Should developing countries prioritize environmental protection over resource extraction when the two are in conflict?

Asked by: msmith0126
  • Prioritizing environmental protection will bring economic development in the long-run.

    The world spends about 20% of its budget on the military, on "defense". A.K.A. Fighting countries for oil and sacrificing lives because we don't have sustainable energy. If we can spend at least 1/10 of that money, the earth could be saved. Environmental protection is keeping one’s physical, chemical and social surroundings from harm. The definition for environment includes the social and cultural influences on an individual and on a community. Unless that can be protected and kept from harm, a developing country can never become a developed country. The administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, Lisa Jackson said that “Environmental protection is good for economic growth. Don’t get me wrong – environmental regulations are not free. But the money that’s spent is an investment in our country – and one that pays for itself. Cleaner car standards will mean 950 million tons of carbon pollution cut from our skies; $3000 in savings for each driver of clean cars, and $2.3 billion that can stay at home in our economy rather than buying oil from overseas.” Better environmental policies mean less usage of fossil fuels and more efficient use of energy and therefore efficient use of money. For example, a 2007 study by the Alliance to Save Energy said that if only all Christmas bulbs were replaced with LED bulbs, U.S. would save $17 billion dollars per one year. When fossil fuels and minerals deplete, sustainable energy will bring economic safety in the long-run. Merriam-Webster dictionary says that something sustainable is “able to last or continue for a long time.” Developing sustainable energy will bring economic opportunity in domestic land rather than depending on oil nations for power. Americanprogress.Org says that the American Clean Energy and Security Act can generate roughly $150 billion per year and about 1.7 million jobs. Resources extraction will cause resource depletion which will cause an economic downfall, but investment in environmental protection will protect the society in the future.

  • People over economy

    The trade-off developing countries get for their resources is usually money. They are participating in the global commodity chain. This is how they continue to exist in most cases so I am speaking specifically about countries that do this. The money the country does end up getting is not nearly enough to actually stabilize their economy and the vast majority goes to the small amount of rulers instead of the masses. Algeria is a perfect example. It extracts oil and has a lot of business, but the rulers take all the money. In the process of extracting, they pollute and destroy the environment. Now, 57% of the people of Algeria have no access to clean water and the vast majority of the country is poor. It is listed as one of the worst places to be born on earth. So the country valued resource extraction over protecting the environment and Its people are far worse off now than before. At least in poverty they had clean water rather than being poor and unhealthy. Its conditions like this that cause conflict rather than solving it.

  • YOLO, Holla For a Dolla!

    You see, there is only one earth. Developing countries are developing for the future. A future that may last for an infinite amount of time. If we plan only for the present, we lay a weak foundation for our future. If developing countries do not value the preservation of the environment, there will be no environment for their posterity.

  • We only have one planet

    We cannot let war, or any other human conflict be an excuse to forget we only have one planet. We cannot stand by as our planet dies. No more excuses. There needs to be a program where each country has a neutral environmental person in the UN so during times of war there can be negotiations of environment done even in the worst times of conflict.

  • We need change

    This is my debate topic. I know that the opposing side argues... "mankind" is so important. Well, if we don't protect the earth, there will be no mankind. We are in the largest extinction. YES, the largest in earth history. Why? Because humans are too busy with money and finding the most crap to help their economy

  • Block against- Silly Argument - The Environment is Expendable

    What a load of nonsense! How is the environment expendable? Once an animal or plant goes extinct, there is no bringing it back. Every year, 240 species go extinct about every year creating a problem called bio diversity lost (there are other names for it) which is when in the ecosystem, the different types of animals become less and less and they lose their food or survival needs completely collapsing the ecosystem. If we kept on causing oil spills like the Gulf incident killing the fish, it will cause the ecosystem to collapse (see how I used the same word again) and not only that, it will even affect the economy. Stocks in the fish market will fall and there would be losses of money that can amount to millions. Nature is not expendable, of course we need the resources, but it is sort of like killing the gooses that lays golden eggs. Bull**** to who ever wrote that argument.

  • Life over Death

    If we do not priortize environmental protection, then we will all be wiped from the earth soon. The human race as a whole is too dependent on resources such as oil and petroleum, what happens when they run out? Because they will run out.
    Because of the extraction of resources, such as oil, we are polluting the air with our extraction methods as well, as destroying our environment. If we destroy our environment then we will have no place to live to use the resources we extract. Its really simple, its just the reasons tacked onto it by people are complicated and useless.
    What would you rather, Living but without certain resources such as electricity and oil, of die because of our continual refusal to let go of our IPads and fancy luxury cars meanwhile the world around us (the natural world) is dying?

  • People will live for a longer period of time.

    Already, we know that our planet will run out of resources soon enough. If we allow all countries that are developing to use the amount of resources needed to become fully developed rather than paying attention to the environment, we won't have an environment to protect. Having become accustomed to extracting resources, we'll change as human beings once those resources run out and eventually our planet won't have life on it. Because us not prioritizing environment protection won't only affect humans, it'll affect all life. All because we didn't prioritize environmental protection over resource extraction.

  • Developing Countries Need to Find Better Solutions

    I do not see how just destroying much needed parts of nature to get temporary resources would help us. For example, in Nigeria, oil companies are destroying forests and wildlife just to harvest oil which a quarter of the product harvested is spilled into water such as the Niger Delta. The developing companies should ether enforce or create policies and laws to punish these companies or, better yet, get rid of the companies performing illegal and unjustified actions upon the poor people in the country. Plants and animals are going extinct from these companies like Shell or PetroChina. Another reason why developing countries should prioritize the environment is because it puts them in debt. Imagine, how all the companies cause all these issues in which the country must handle with their already weak economy. These "accidents" are not performed by the developing country, they are produced by the companies. All in all, the developing countries should prioritize the environment over resource extraction.

  • Think About It

    Earth is our home, without it we wouldn't be here. It's where we sleep, eat, breathe, play, work, and live. If we destroy our only home, we won't have anywhere else to go. There's no other options. If we don't prevent the destruction of our planet, there won't be any developing countries to worry about because we'd be suffering from our mistake of procrastinating protecting the environment. There's no point in fixing the walls if the foundation is bad.

  • Humans are more important.

    Should we protect the environment? Yes. Definitely. Should we put the environment ahead of mankind? No. We are more important than the environment, and if we wish to survive, it is necessary for us to extract the necessary resources from the earth and, if we so choose, also have enough to make it easy to survive.

  • Developing Countries don't have a strong enough economy

    While supporting the environment is great, I can't see how developing countries are able to provide economic sanctions while trying to grow their economies. Most developing countries have a wealth of natural resources (oil, minerals, etc.), and sometimes you can't put economic restrictions on the ability to extract these resources. For developed countries, sure. Developing ones are too weak economically to comply.

  • Improving environment strongly required economics development.

    Environmental protection is not on the contrary of economics development. It is economics development that leads to the technology development, the increase of production, and finally, the advance of human society. In summary, economics development is giving us the chance consuming less nature sources and meeting the growing needs. In other words, without economics development, there’s no way contributing to environmental protection.

  • Got Anything Else?

    Everyone on the pro side f this debate is saying that the Earth will be destroyed if we keep doing this. But, do you have any other argument to tell us because that one is getting old. This is the only income for some of these countries. They need to do this.

  • What about developed nations?

    If one think about it carefully, why should developing nations protect their environment instead of extracting their resources?
    During most of the roughly 3 decades since climate change became a global concern, governments around the world optimistically assumed that a green transition would happen naturally overtime, as rising fossil fuel prices nudged consumers towards low carbon alternatives. Today we can clearly see that this belief is completely wrong.
    Think about it, where are the ones who are fighting for green technology reside? In developed nations right. These think-tanks are trying to propel developing economies into green technology. Surely, we have to look out for our own selves before commanding others, that's what I believe. Developed economies are the ones who consume in excess, waste so much resources, ( do you know how much food is thrown to mother nature monthly to avoid increasing supply and thus decreasing prices in developed nations?), and are the ones offering 'green' technology to developing nations. Should they not set examples themselves before?
    Developing countries have more pressing needs. The growing global burden of non communicable diseases (NCDs) is now killing 36 million people each year and needs urgent and comprehensive action, countries like these suffer from poor government, weakened or a failed political system, combined with high corruption – that also makes the countries questioned on their capability of attaining true growth. These countries are suffering from extreme poverty, should they be concerned about their own survival or prioritize environmental protection at this stage?

  • Too much money is already being spent by the government

    The proposition, has a hasty generalization. They think that there will be a whole world apocalypse if we don't do anything. However, they have a fallacy. The fact that the government is spending a lot of money already, we have shown we can do. The government's economy will fail if we take the proposition's side. We have to focus on our economy first.

  • Circle of Life

    The world as a whole is a vicious cycle that revolves around the environment as much as humans. Without trees, humans cant survive and by killing the environment you're simply killing yourself at the same time. By extracting resources you're killing off our already suffering planet and giving these countries a higher risk of becoming less developed

  • A country's main priority is to people.

    In underdeveloped nations, it is paramount to start your economy. If a country cannot stand economically, it cannot stand at all. If a country goes into complete poverty, it cannot defend from invaders or supply for its citizens. People are saying that it is important to protect the resources we rely on, but most resources are in plenty, or aren't relied on. Diamonds are a natural resource of income, and those have almost no use other than jewellery, and there are far too many alternatives to oil for us to rely on that which is extracted.

  • Medicine and World Starvation

    The term resource extraction defines anything that is taken out of the environment. This could include medical herbs, food and research & development necessities. Many people living in third world countries need these resources to survive. There are millions of people that are plagued with malnutrition and diseases. We can't simply deny the lives of innocent children and adults in the effort of saving a RENEWABLE resource. And let's not forget, these innocent children could very well help the environment in the future. Environmental protection seems futile and tiny compared to the ever growing numbers of the sick.

  • The resolution is simply too problematic to properly debate over this.

    The term developing countries is too conflicted. There is no true definition of the word, and also all you people have been forgetting that we are discussing developing countries. That means we're not talking about the UK, or the U.S.A. We are talking about places that have a lower living standard that developed countries, and the problem with that is the fact that is that these developed countries have decided which countries are developing. I negate the resolution, not because I think developing countries should prioritize resource extraction, but because the resolution is flawed.

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