December 9: Final exam Part I. The multiple-choice portion of the final exam will be administered in class and will count as 20 points toward the final grade.
December 16: The take-home portion will be due as an email attachment delivered before the end of the day on December 16, the assigned exam date for this course and will count as 20 points toward the final grade. The essay question will be provided well in advance.
Part I: Sustainability and Global Crisis
September 9 to 30: Introducing Sustainability
Learning Goal #1: As displayed in
the Syllabus, the first goal of ENST209 is to demonstrate your thorough
understanding of the concept of sustainability.
September 9 Part I: After our introductions and initial business, our first session
provides a detailed overview of the course to establish expectations and to
assist your planning and preparation.
Introductions to the course and to each other; roster confirmation
Orientation, overview, and business of the course: syllabus, schedule, Wiki Bulletin Board: We
will go over the flow of the course in detail.
September 16: The Anthropocene provides the historical context within which to understand world sustainability. This seminal and challenging journal article is short but will require close reading. We will engage in ample discussion, so come to class prepared.
Part II: We explain what sustainability means in the context
of ENST209: Report of the World Commission on Environment and Development (a.k.a.,the Brundtland Commission Report), Our Common Future.
Browse the Brundtland Report and sample its findings and logic. This is a seminal historical document.
Read the important Overview, noting the
way that sustainable development was framed and
the language used to define sustainable development,
quoted below. Read the Brundtland section on sustainable development carefully.
Note the Report's succinct
working definition of sustainability: "Humanity has the ability
to make development sustainable to ensure that
it meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future
generations to meet their own needs."
Tip: Brundtland defined world sustainability for the first time. When asked for an explanation of sustainability, don't neglect this seminal report.
October 7 to October 21: The Global Crisis
Learning Goal #2: The student will demonstrate
an empirical grasp of the nature and extent of the
current global crisis. The student will coherently explain
timely and comprehensive aspects that indicate the
extent of the unsustainability of our current civilization. This includes a critical interpretation of how modern civilization
resists, even obstructs, sustainability. The mid-term exam, counting 40 points, will be given on October 21.
October 7: We will introduce and define the global crisis.
Please read Lester Brown, World on the Edge, Preface and Chapter One.
Lester Brown, World on the Edge, Part I, A Deteriorating Foundation, pp. 19-55. Hear Lester
Brown in his own words connecting Limits to Growth to his Plan B.
October 21 Part I: Concluding remarks on the global crisis and the disabling analysis. Set up for the next section of the course, sustainability solutions. We will also discuss the Course Enrichment Component assignment.
October 21 Part II: The mid-term exam on all course materials to date will be given as multiple-choice and essays using blue books, provided. The mid-term exam counts 40 points toward the calculation of your grade for the course. A separate support page provides assistance for your preparation and explains the format.
Note: The last day to withdraw from a class with a "W" grade is October 23.
Part II: Sustainability Solutions
Learning Goal #3: The student will demonstrate an appreciation of how people and organizations take
actions toward sustainability: How can citizens and organizations make
decisions and gain skills helpful in making their lives sustainable, promoting
sustainable communities, and achieving a sustainable world. What public
policies and business models can be formulated and implemented that promote world sustainability?
October 28 - December 9: Sustainability Solutions & the Emergence of Civil
October 28 Part I: Transition from the global crisis to sustainability solutions.
Film: The Economics of Happiness: See the web site of the International Society for Ecology and Culture.
October 28 Part II: Review of mid-term exam: I will distrubute the blue exam books for review of the essay questions and distribute the Scantron cards to go over the multiple-choice questions from the mid-term exam.
November 4: Economic growth, happiness, and sustainability:
Lester Brown's World on the Edge: Part III: The Response, Plan B, pp. 99 - 180. We will view and discuss the the slide show on the second part of World on the Edge, starting with slide #28. Note: The PowerPoint corresponds to Brown
December 2: Brown, World on the Edge, Part IV: Watching the Clock, pp. 181-202.
Prof. Hayes has made a legacy overall supplementary presentation
on Brown Plan B. My notes on Brown's themes were originally developed for the prior version of the book. Brown's themes and the overall argument, however, have remained largely the same.