Study Questions

Schnaiberg and Gould, Chapter 10


(1)  Identify three levels of difficulties inherent in efforts to deal with the political and scientific issues that arise in the transition to a sustainable society.  For each level, provide concrete examples and explain why and how sustainability is impeded.


(2)  Why do environmental tensions endure?  Explain, taking into consideration the ecological, economic and social benefits of the treadmill of production.


(3)  Is it possible to construct a sustainable society without conflict?  What types of conflict might result from efforts to remake the treadmill of production?  What are the most likely outcomes of these conflicts?  What can be done to ensure more equitable and sustainable outcomes?


(4)  What role does politics play in a transition to a sustainable society?  Have American political leaders taken this necessity seriously?  Explain, and cite evidence to support your response.