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Environmental Ethics

Volume 22, Issue 3, Fall 2000

Janna Thompson
Pages 241-258
DOI: 10.5840/enviroethics200022316

Environment as Heritage

Arguments for the preservation of natural objects and environments sometimes appeal to the value of those objects as cultural heritage. Can something be valuable because of its relation to the historical past? I examine and assess arguments for preservation based upon heritage value and defend the thesis that we have an obligation to appreciate what our predecessors valued and to value those things that have played an important role in our history. I show how this conception of our obligations can be used to defend the preservation of natural objects and environments including wilderness areas.

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