Today's assignment regards ethical environment and the moral compass being used by businesses worldwide. Moral VS Ethical Business Practice
Do you believe that business has any direct ethical duties to living beings other than humans? Yes, they do. Any company that has any product which could potentially harm the air, water, plants, or animals has an obligation to humanity and the earth to ensure adherence to proper protocols for the safety of the environment that we all share. The air is required for all beings, including plants, to thrive in their current settings. Suppose the air is polluted by emissions or poisonous gases from manufacturing or power plants and any other business type. In that case, those companies are responsible for repairing or compensating for the damages. However, I write the "compensate for damages" statement lightly, due to some environmental injuries being so extensive that they might not be repairable, and compensation would be pointless if the environment is destroyed. Exxon oil spills are a great example of the destruction of our environment; the ecosystems of multiple locations worldwide, including our fisheries, have suffered tremendously due to their negligence. Not only did the environment suffer, but many businesses that relied on those environments sustained losses due to the failure of products, i.e., fish, lobster, shrimp, and seaweed. According to the referenced article and the results from the spills that have occurred, the damages from those spills can last "days to decades."
Do animals, plants, or ecosystems have rights? To me, yes, each of them does. Referencing from "Science from a Changing World," Not only do they have rights, but they also have entitlements to their natural habitats. Although humans are the dominant species on the planet, we don't have the right to destroy other species and their habitats for the sole purpose of monetary gain. Many disagree, and those who do are usually big businesses seeking profits from the species' habitats. The profits are generally mineral or mining explorations and scientific studies, which companies use to justify their actions. There isn't any justification for destroying our planet or destroying other species and their habitats. After an error occurs, the environment could suffer for decades. They are turning our livelihood upside down, without a way to restore or replenish it properly. For example, many farmers know that a single field must be broken into portions to allow the ground to replenish the minerals and nutrients. The soil loses its ability to grow healthy plants if it's continuously farmed without natural replenishment. A field would be worked for a few years and rest for one year, while a different section is farmed. This allows for the natural replenishment of the field. Some extra minor work might be necessary to restore the soil, but usually the ground will naturally restore itself within one year, if left alone.
The criteria I use is my heritage and family experience regarding land. As part Native American and Irish, we respect the earth because we know that our livelihood comes from it. We also respect every living being, either animal, plant, or water, because they are life, not only for themselves but for all of humanity. The bottom line truly is respect, even though many ignore this simple fact. If society continues at the pace we are currently going; then our earth will be destroyed in less than 30 years. It's not due to population; it's due to the lack of respect for life.
What is your standard for determining what objects count; from a moral point of view? If a species exists, then they count. It doesn't matter what they are; it matters that they live, and that is the standard I use. I firmly believe that respect holds more weight morally, in many instances than anything. Respect goes a long way in any situation, be it environmental, personal, or business relationships. When a business or person only sees an item for profit, then they lack respect for that item, no matter what it is. If there's no respect, then most likely, there will not be an ethical or moral decision made by the businesses regarding it. When that happens, it will be difficult to change the outcome if something happened that could devastate the habitat or environment.
It's challenging to fight big business because most legal systems see their financial holdings as more valuable than humanity or life itself. Unless large groups of people come together to fight against them, there isn't much that can be done. The law doesn't work for many, unfortunately, as much as I hate to write that, it's the truth. Overall, I'd like to see the earth replenished in many areas so that the natural habitats will thrive again, but it's highly unlikely that will ever happen. Too many businesses are greedy for profit, and they lack respect for life and humanity, let alone some animal or creature, even the water we drink and the air we breathe. These days are unfortunate for life because of greedy big business.
As always, all the best for the best. and means you!
His Peace & His Love Always!