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Developing countries should prioritize environmental protection over resource extraction

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/30/2013 Category: Economics
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 5,799 times Debate No: 43130
Debate Rounds (3)
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I affirm, developing countries should prioritize environmental protection over resource extraction when the two are in conflict.

The following definitions are from Oxford Dictionary

Developing Country- poor agricultural country that is seeking to become more advanced economically and socially

Environmental Protection- Environmental protection is a practice of protecting the natural environment on individual, organizational or governmental levels, for the benefit of both the natural environment and humans. ...

Resource Extraction- Natural resources occur naturally within environments that exist relatively undisturbed by humanity, in a natural form

I value morality.

Arbor states,
We like trees around us because they make life more pleasant. Most of us respond to the presence of trees beyond simply observing their beauty. We feel serene, peaceful, restful, and tranquil in a grove of trees. We are "at home" there. Hospital patients have been shown to recover from surgery more quickly when their hospital room offered a view of trees. The strong ties between people and trees are most evident in the resistance of community residents to removing trees to widen streets. Or we note the heroic efforts of individuals and organizations to save particularly large or historic trees in a community.
The stature, strength, and endurance of trees give them a cathedral-like quality. Because of their potential for long life, trees frequently are planted as living memorials. We often become personally attached to trees that we or those we love have planted.
This means that trees make us feel at peace during our time on earth and help us with particular things such as recovering from surgery. Trees are like to us our mothers when we were young and were sick.

Arbor 2,

Trees alter the environment in which we live by moderating climate, improving air quality, conserving water, and harboring wildlife. Climate control is obtained by moderating the effects of sun, wind, and rain. Radiant energy from the sun is absorbed or deflected by leaves on deciduous trees in the summer and is only filtered by branches of deciduous trees in winter. We are cooler when we stand in the shade of trees and are not exposed to direct sunlight. In winter, we value the sun"s radiant energy. Therefore, we should plant only small or deciduous trees on the south side of homes.
Wind speed and direction can be affected by trees. The more compact the foliage on the tree or group of trees, the greater the influence of the windbreak. The downward fall of rain, sleet, and hail is initially absorbed or deflected by trees, which provides some protection for people, pets, and buildings. Trees intercept water, store some of it, and reduce storm runoff and the possibility of flooding.
Dew and frost are less common under trees because less radiant energy is released from the soil in those areas at night.
Temperature in the vicinity of trees is cooler than that away from trees. The larger the tree, the greater the cooling. By using trees in the cities, we are able to moderate the heat-island effect caused by pavement and buildings in commercial areas.
Air quality can be improved through the use of trees, shrubs, and turf. Leaves filter the air we breathe by removing dust and other particulates. Rain then washes the pollutants to the ground. Leaves absorb carbon dioxide from the air to form carbohydrates that are used in the plant"s structure and function. In this process, leaves also absorb other air pollutants"such as ozone, carbon monoxide, and sulfur dioxide"and give off oxygen.
By planting trees and shrubs, we return to a more natural, less artificial environment. Birds and other wildlife are attracted to the area. The natural cycles of plant growth, reproduction, and decomposition are again present, both above and below ground. Natural harmony is restored to the urban environment.
This means that trees offer many positive benefits to humans.

Life on Earth depends on plants, algae and fungi. For humanity, all seven billion of us, they are the major source of food, clothing, shelter and medicine. Our fossil fuels were formed by them. They clean our air and water, store carbon, and protect us from floods and drought.
This shows that humans cannot survive without the plants that make up our environment. Even drastically changing the amount of trees and plants that make up our environment can be fatal.

Marine Conservation Institute,

Because the oceans are the largest ecosystems on Earth, they are the Earth"s largest life support systems. To survive and prosper, we all need healthy oceans. Oceans generate half of the oxygen people breathe. At any given moment, more than 97% of the world"s water resides in oceans. Oceans provide a sixth of the animal protein people eat. They"re the most promising source of new medicines to combat cancer, pain and bacterial diseases. Living oceans absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and reduce the impact of climate change

This shows that oceans are vital for humans to continue to live on Earth.

Thus, the standard is decreasing harmful resource production.

C1: Resource Extraction harms the Environment

Liam Downey [associate professor of sociology at the University of Colorado at Boulder], Eric Bonds [doctoral student at the University of Colorado at Boulder], and Katherine Clark [graduate student in environmental studies at the University of Colorado at Boulder], "Natural Resource Extraction, Armed Violence, and Environmental Degradation", Organic Environ. 2010 December, vol. 23(4):417-445.
Moreover, because natural resources are the ultimate source of all the energy and goods we produce, consume, and throw away, natural resource extraction harms the environment not only at the "point of extraction" but globally as well. Thus, the grave environmental problems associated with industrial production and consumption (in both capitalist and noncapitalist societies) would not exist, or would not exist in their current form, if industrial societies were unable to efficiently extract and safely transport vast quantities of natural resources.

This shows that natural resource extraction harms our environment we live in and we must reduce or get rid of industries in their current system of extracting resources.


Anne Ehrlich & Paul Ehrlich, Professor of Biology and Senior Research Scientist at Stanford, 1/9/13 (Can a collapse of global civilization be avoided?,Proceedings of the Royal Society Biological Sciences, Proc. R. Soc. B 2013 280)
But today, for the first time, humanity"s global civilization"the worldwide, increasingly interconnected, highly technological society in which we all are to one degree or another, embedded"is threatened with collapse by an array of environmental problems. Humankind finds itself engaged in what Prince Charles described as "an act of suicide on a grand scale" [4], facing what the UK"s Chief Scientific Advisor John Beddington called a "perfect storm" of environmental problems [5]. The most serious of these problems show signs of rapidly escalating severity, especially climate disruption. But other elements could potentially also contribute to a collapse: an accelerating extinction of animal and plant populations and species, which could lead to a loss of ecosystem services essential for human survival; land degradation and land-use change; a pole-to-pole spread of toxic compounds; ocean acidification and eutrophication (dead zones); worsening of some aspects of the epidemiological environment (factors that make human populations susceptible to infectious diseases); depletion of increasingly scarce resources [6,7], including especially groundwater, which is being overexploited in many key agricultural areas [8]; and resource wars [9]. These are not separate problems; rather they interact in two gigantic complex adaptive systems: the biosphere system and the human socio-economic system. The negative manifestations of these interactions are often referred to as "the human predicament" [10], and determining how to prevent it from generating a global collapse is perhaps the foremost challenge confronting humanity. The human predicament is driven by overpopulation, overconsumption of natural resources and the use of unnecessarily environmentally damaging technologies and socio-economic-political arrangements to service Homo sapiens" aggregate consumption [11"17]. How far the human population size now is above the planet"s long-term carrying capacity is suggested (conservatively) by ecological footprint analysis [18"20]. It shows that to support today"s population of seven billion sustainably (i.e. with business as usual, including current technologies and standards of living) would require roughly half an additional planet; to do so, if all citizens of Earth consumed resources at the US level would take four to five more Earths. Adding the projected 2.5 billion more people by 2050 would make the human assault on civilization"s life-support systems disproportionately worse, because almost everywhere people face systems with nonlinear responses [11,21"23], in which environmental damage increases at a rate that becomes faster with each additional person. Of course, the claim is often made that humanity will expand Earth"s carrying capacity dramatically with technological innovation [24], but it is widely recognized that technologies can both add and subtract from carrying capacity. The plough evidently first expanded it and now appears to be reducing it [3]. Overall, careful analysis of the prospects does not provide much confidence that technology will save us [25] or that gross domestic product can be disengaged from resource use [26]

Since resource extraction is harming the environment, and if the environment keeps getting worse due to resource extraction, the human race may no longer exist. All plants and animals will be wiped out and oceans will be ruined. Also, many resources needed for human survival will disappear

C2: Resource Extraction harms oceans.
Allen, 12 (Greg, NPR, "U.S. Watches Closely As Oil Drilling Begins Off Cuba", 2/13,
There are big plans for oil exploration in the Caribbean, not far off the coast of Florida. A Spanish company recently began drilling in Cuban waters " just 55 miles from Key West. The well is the first of several exploratory wells planned in Cuba and the Bahamas. The drilling has officials and researchers in Florida scrambling to make plans for how they'll respond in case of a spill. The U.S. currently doesn't allow any drilling for oil off its Atlantic coast or in the eastern Gulf of Mexico. One reason is what's at stake. Florida's tourism-based economy depends on its beaches, fishing and clear Caribbean water. Environmental Concerns The U.S. ban on drilling off of Florida, however, doesn't affect America's Caribbean neighbors. The exploratory well being drilled off of Cuba has many here concerned, including people like Richard Dodge. Dodge is the dean of Nova Southeastern University's Oceanographic Center in Dania Beach, near Fort Lauderdale, and what he's really concerned about is coral. At the school, Dodge and his graduate students raise staghorn coral in outdoor saltwater tanks. Live coral grow in the crystal-clear water, some just finger length. "These are relatively new ones that we're starting out," Dodge says. "But over here, these are ones we'll be transplanting to the wild." In another tank, large branches of coral will soon be used to help restore damaged reefs. Florida is home to more than three-quarters of the nation's coral reefs " and they haven't been doing so well. Development and warming oceans have already weakened many. On a map, Dodge points out the location of what he believes is an even bigger potential threat " the spot where Cuba has approved offshore oil drilling. "The site that will be drilled," he says, "is only about 50 miles from Key West." The rig drilling off Cuba's northern coast is operating in water that is more than a mile deep. But it's not the depth that concerns Dodge. In the case of a blowout, it's the operation's proximity to the Gulf Stream. "We're worried that it could get into that stream fast and therefore, within days, impact our coastal ecosystem and coastline," Dodge says. A spill could potentially affect hundreds of miles of beaches, mangroves and estuaries from the Keys to Palm Beach. Dodge and other marine scientists in Florida are asking the federal government to fund research that would help identify the resources most at risk, and develop guidelines to protect them. Embargo Could Complicate Cleanup Complicating matters is the fact that this new well is being drilled in the waters of a country that's under a strict U.S. embargo. Unless they apply for and receive special permission from the government, U.S. companies are banned from doing any work on the well " even if there's a spill..

Oil is a natural resource, and this is one case in which people are worried that oil can ruin the oceans and the ecosystems that are very essential to Earth. And without these ecosystems from the ocean, the human race is in danger of extinction.


I accept this debate.

I negate, Resolved: Developed countries should prioritize environmental protection over resource extraction when the two are in conflict.
For clarification, I offer the following definitions:
From Oxford Dictionary
Prioritize- designate or treat as more important than other things
Environmental protection- to maintain or restore the quality of the environment
From Merriam- Webster
Resource- a source of supply or support
Extraction- the act or process of extracting something
Observation 1: The Aff and the Neg must consider all types of resources in this round.
Observation 2: The Aff must show that environmental protection doesn"t require economic aid in order to win this round.
The value for this round shall be country"s framework. This shall be the value because a civilization cannot function properly without a good economy and austere social programs. This should be valued because it allows for developing countries to progress by having more and more in similar with developed countries.
The criterion shall be strengthening a country"s foundation. The criterion allows for the value of country"s framework to be achieved because by strengthening the basic components of a country, we are creating a better framework for the developing countries to work on. Thus by strengthening a country"s foundation, we can achieve the value of country"s framework.
CONTENTION 1: Economic development is necessary to solve many of the environmental issues of developing countries.
Walter, Ugelow "79:
"The available evidence seems to suggest that environmental policy in developing countries remains comparatively permissive. The developing countries do have major environmental problems, but most of them are the product of poverty rather than affluence. Non-separation of storm and sanitary sewers and the use of open fires for cooking and heating, for example, serve to create environmental problems in developing country urban centers that rival the worst conditions in the advanced nations. Yet only economic growth can generate the real resources required to alleviate such conditions. This fact, together with myriad competing social needs far more pressing than pollution control, contributes to a generally permissive set of environmental attitudes in developing countries. Nevertheless, there is substantial variance among developing countries in environmental policy, partly because of differences in levels of development and partly because of differences in environmental preferences-and environmental attitudes have sometimes demonstrated rapid change. Past environmental "disasters" like the dramatic losses in the Peruvian cotton crop after introduction of pesticides, the stripping of the Haitian mahogany forestand the ecological effects of the Aswan Dam in Egypt are not as likely to be repeated quite as readily in the future. In general, though, environmental constraints specifically in the extractive sector are not likely to serve as a major obstacle to growth of the industry."
Environmental protection is important; however, for developing countries to protect the environment, money is necessary and money comes from economic development. Resource extraction is a great contributor to helping the economy, thus resource extraction is needed in order to produce the money needed for protecting the environment. By creating a better economy, the developing countries will achieve the criterion of strengthening the country"s foundation, therefore the value of country"s framework is achieved.

CONTENTION 2: Economic growth is required to achieve environmental protection.
Beckerman "92:
"The important environmental problems for the 75% of the world"s population that live in developing countries are local problems of access to safe drinking water or decent sanitation, and urban degradation. Furthermore there is clear evidence that , although economic growth usually leads to environmental deterioration in the early stages of the process, in the end the best- and probably the only- way to attain a decent environment in most countries is to become rich."
This is a good time to go back to the old clich": the ends justify the means. A developing country can only protect the environment by spending money and resource extraction produces money. In the beginning, it may harm the environment, but in the end, enough money will be available to supply funds for environmental protection programs. Environmental protection shouldn"t be prioritized over resource extraction because resource extraction is required for environmental protection to occur therefore resource extraction must come before protecting the environment. By growing the economy, a developing country can achieve the criterion of strengthening the country"s foundation, therefore the value is achieved.

CONTENTION 3: Extracted renewable energy is correlated to less poverty, better health services, and improved education, such as cases in Sub- Saharan Africa.
Kammen and Kirubi "08:
"After five decades of rural electrification, less than 5% of the rural population has access to the central grid in SSA, and new connections barely keep pace with population growth (TABLE 1). The patterns of regional energy production and consumption are far from uniform, however. North Africa is heavily dependent on oil and gas and the Republic of South Africa, on coal and nuclear power; in the rest of SSA, biomass (charcoal, fuelwood, dung, and crop residues) supplies 70%"" 90% of energy demand. The Republic of South Africa accounts for 50% of installed electricity generation on the continent. Moreover, energy use and energy investments SSA are clearly mismatched. Despite serving a minority, large-scale conventional energy sectors (electricity and petroleum) receive most energy investments. This is at the expense of the abundant, mature, and cost-effective small-scale renewable energy technologies, such as microhydro, solar energy, and improved biomass cookstoves. Many studies in SSA and elsewhere demonstrate strong empirical linkages between renewable energy technologies and a wide range of the United Nations Millennium Development Goals, including reduced child and maternal mortality, poverty alleviation, improved education, and health services."
Extracted resources can help create better hospitals, better schools, and more jobs. Environmental protection may create more jobs but it spends more money than it can bring in and therefore cannot create better schools and hospitals. This is why environmental protection shouldn"t be prioritized over resource extraction. Resource extraction has more benefits to a developing country than environmental protection does. In order to strengthen the country"s foundation, its government must create better social services and create more jobs and this can be done better by resource extraction rather than environmental protection. By achieving the criterion we have achieved the value.

The value: It is not moral to deny the citizens of a country better education, better hospitals, and more jobs in an excuse to protect the environment when resource extraction allows for all those benefits and in the end allows for environmental protection.
Standard/Criterion: It states decreasing resource production; however, the con is extracting resources not producing resources, so the standard doesn't justify the prioritization of environmental protection over resource extraction. Also, when the aff's contentions don't decrease resource extraction but rather decrease resource production, the con's viewpoint remains untouched and the aff's arguments are atopical.
Contention 1: 1)As I said in my case, resource extraction does harm the environment in the beginning, but in the end it allows for more environmental protection than could've been possible before and so the end justifies the means. 2)And are poor countries to stop developing their countries for their countries and therefore leave most of the citizens in poverty. This is not moral and therefore the aff doesn't acheive its value.3) I would like to say extinction is good and will offer the following arguments as to why: " The version of progress enunciated in Hawking's story of cosmic colonisation presents a view whereby the solution to the negative consequences of technological action is to create new forms of technology, new forms of action.Does his mode of reflection pay enough attention to the irredeemable moments of destruction, harm, pain and suffering inflicted historically by human action upon the non-human world? There are, after all, a variety of negative consequences of human action, moments of destruction, moments of suffering, which may not be redeemable or ever made better.What we try to do paper is to draw out some of the consequences of reflecting more broadly upon the negative costs of human activity in the context of environmental catastrophe. This involves re-thinking a general idea of progress through the historical and conceptual lenses of speciesism the only appropriate moral response to a history of human destructive action is to give up our claims to biological supremacy and to sacrifice our form of life so as to give an eternal gift to others. From the outset it is important to make clear that the argument for the global suicide of humanity is presented as a thought experiment. The purpose of such a proposal in response to Hawking is to help show how a certain conception of modernity, of which his approach is representative, is problematic. Taking seriously the idea of global suicide is one way of throwing into question an ideology or dominant discourse of modernist-humanist action. [3] By imagining an alternative to the existing state of affairs, absurd as it may seem to some readers by its nihilistic and radical 'solution', we wish to open up a ground for a critical discussion of modernity and its negative impacts on both human an
Debate Round No. 1


ravi.upadhya forfeited this round.


I have nothing to say because my opponent forfeited?
Debate Round No. 2


ravi.upadhya forfeited this round.


Same thing.
Debate Round No. 3
6 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Posted by WalleyKing 4 years ago
Pros VC????
Posted by LDPOFODebATeR0328 4 years ago
Full Forfeit...
Posted by kbub 4 years ago
Nice topic.
Posted by sungod97 4 years ago
cities. Human errors create oil spills. even in the biggest oil spill in the world, the cause was a deliberate action done by Iraqi forces during the Gulf War. Resource extraction doesn't cause oil spills, so this contention doesn't make much sense.3) I would like to add that in the occurrence of an oil spill, money is needed to clean it up and the biggest money producing industry is resource extraction and not environmental protection.4) The aff doesn't achieve his value because he cannot achieve the standard of decreasing harmful resource production because he attempts to attack resource extraction in this contention not resource production.
Posted by sungod97 4 years ago
I would like to continue my round 1 argument here because I ran out of space.

and non-human animals, as well as on the environment. [4] In this respect, by giving voice to the idea of a human-free world, we attempt to draw attention to some of the asymmetries of environmental reality and to give cause to question why attempts to build bridges from the human to the non-human have, so far, been unavailing. . If we were to colonise other planets, what form of 'racism' would underlie our actions? What higher value would we place upon human life, upon the human race, at the expense of other forms of life , 'life' is not to be understood in "a biologically narrow sense". Rather he argues that the term 'life' should be used in a comprehensive non-technical way such that it refers also to things biologists may classify as non-living . Rather than reject this common reasoning of modern science we argue that it should be reconsidered upon the basis of species equality. That is, modern science needs to ask the question of: 'Who' is the best candidate for 'sacrifice' for the good of the environment and all species concerned? The moral response to the violence, suffering and damage humans have inflicted upon this earth and its inhabitants might then be to argue for the sacrifice of the human species. The moral act would be the global suicide of humanity." Since the aff is against such a moral act, he is not upholding his value again and his entire contention 1 must fall apart.4) in his impact, the aff value resources for survival which entirely contradicts his stand against resource extraction.
Contention 2: The aff says resource extraction harms the oceans because oil spills will pollute entire oceans. 1) I would like to make it clear that oil spills are rare and the biggest one took place in part of a gulf, the Persian Gulf, not an entire ocean. 2) According to both of our definitions, resource extraction doesn't create oil spills, it supplies the world with oil to run cit
Posted by sungod97 4 years ago
yay! an ld debate! I need to practice my case
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