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BSOE-143: Environmental Sociology

BSOE-143: Environmental Sociology

IGNOU Solved Assignment Solution for 2021-22

If you are looking for BSOE-143 IGNOU Solved Assignment solution for the subject Environmental Sociology, you have come to the right place. BSOE-143 solution on this page applies to 2021-22 session students studying in BASOH courses of IGNOU.

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Assignment Code: BSOE-143/ASST/TMA/2021-22

Course Code: BSOE-143

Assignment Name: Environmental Sociology

Year: 2021-2022

Verification Status: Verified by Professor

Assignment A

Answer the following in about 500 words each.

Q1) What do you understand by sustainability? Discuss with examples. (20)

Ans) Sustainability is a difficult idea to grasp. "Sustainable development" is defined by the United Nations World Commission on Environment and Development (WCED) as "development that meets current demands without jeopardising future generations' ability to satisfy their own needs." As a result, sustainability has been described as meeting our current needs without jeopardising future generations' ability to meet their own. It is presumptively assumed that resources are finite and should be used carefully and intelligently, with long-term priorities and consequences in mind.

Nonetheless, because of the environmental and socioeconomic difficulties that countries throughout the world are confronting, the term "sustainability" is being employed in a more precise sense these days. Nowadays, sustainability is commonly described as the processes and actions by which humankind avoids depletion of natural resources in order to maintain an ecological balance that does not allow modern societies' quality of life to deteriorate.

In this way, the term "sustainability" has come to be used broadly to describe improvements in areas such as overexploitation of natural resources, manufacturing operations (energy use and polluting subproducts), linear product consumption, investment direction, citizen lifestyle, consumer purchasing behaviours, technological developments, and business and institutional changes. Someone is often claimed to be sustainable as long as an action causes little, less, or no harm to the natural world – under the assumption (not always guaranteed) that ecosystems will continue to operate and generate the conditions that allow for the quality of life of today's modern societies to not deteriorate.


Technology: Examples of What is Sustainability in Technology

Electronic device usage is increasing every day. These devices, however, are built from Earth materials mined by the mining industry. Mining may be a very polluting business, and the establishment of new mines has a clear impact on deforestation.

As a result, in the tech world, being sustainable requires you to use your equipment for an extended amount of time - therefore if you want to be sustainable, you must avoid upgrading your smartphone every other year! It's also important to make sure you dispose of them responsibly, as they may be quite polluting if not handled properly.

Soon, technological sustainability will also include how electric car and solar panel batteries (mainly lithium-ion batteries) are disposed of. Companies who focus on battery recycling and developing goods with a core that can be maintained and swapped for a new battery will be at the forefront.

Fashion: Examples of Sustainability in Fashion

Fashion, particularly fast fashion, places a premium on speed and low cost in order to offer new collections on a regular basis. Nonetheless, the issue with this industry is its harmful impact on the environment. On the one hand, fast-growing cotton typically necessitates the use of industrial, harmful chemicals (pesticides and fertilisers), which can lead to soil pollution, depletion, and eutrophication of water supplies.

On the other side, there is a lot of textile waste, and many clothing are composed of synthetic fibres that end up in the ocean as microplastics after being washed. In this sense, a company that creates clothes with durable fabrics, employs sustainably farmed cotton, follows circular economy concepts across its value chain, and uses less hazardous chemicals is being environmentally responsible. Within the fashion sector, this would be an example of sustainability.

Q2) Critically examine the term Political Ecology in the study of environment. (20)

Ans) When we think of nature, we usually picture it in its most pristine state. We presume that the mountains and seas represented on calendars and posters are located far away from human settlements. We do know, however, that this is rarely the case, as any visit to a remote alpine or seaside region will demonstrate—humans are inextricably linked to nature. This essential feature results in a sequence of interactions between humans and the natural environment in which they live, which has shaped every element of human life. Whether in the city or in the foothills of the highlands, all human societies must eventually deal with nature and its resources in order to develop their life. The concern of a political ecology approach is to determine whether or not this connection is devoid of politics.

Political ecology, broadly defined, is the study of environmental politics in the broadest sense of the term. Political Ecology rejects the notion that environmental degradation is a simple objective problem that can be solved with scientific and technical solutions—for example, "there are just too many people," or "we just need cleaner and more efficient production or disposal technologies." Political ecologists, on the other hand, emphasise that there is an ecology of politics as well as a politics of ecology. Natural resources—their distribution, allocation, and extraction—play a critical role in shaping the type of political and social institutions in a community.

The formation of social structures and institutions is influenced by environmental conditions, which impose difficulties and possibilities for providing basic requirements. Furthermore, environment is a political issue. When there is scarcity, judgments must be taken about how items will be distributed, as well as who will receive and who will not. Aside from resource distribution and benefit streams, judgments are made about who in society bears the brunt of environmental degradation. As social dynamics determine natural resource use patterns, as well as fundamental ideas of what defines environmental problems, who causes them, and what the solutions should be, hierarchies, privilege, and power all play a role.

The study of the relationships between environmental concerns, interests, and movements, as well as the uneven access of the environment as a whole to different social groups, is referred to as political ecology. Its philosophical roots may be traced back to the 1970s, when anthropologists began studying the connections between ecology and political economics in order to better explain bourgeois environmental protests. Dianne Rocheleau, Arturo Escobar, Richard Peet, Piers Blaikie, Bunyan Bryant, Eric Wolf, Johnston Barbara, and others have contributed to the philosophical foundations of political ecology, which examines the links between social power and the functioning of ecosystems.

Access and control over environmental resources, creation, and consumption of environmental discourse, and understanding forms of environmental disturbance, degradation, and rehabilitation have all been studied using theoretical ideas from the social sciences. During the 1960s and 1970s, the proliferation of peasant studies and criticisms of colonialism sparked interest in the changing environmental landscape and community relations against the backdrop of the establishment of the developmental state. Scholars influenced by Marxian political economics began to raise issues such as rural class distinction, peasant mobilisation against colonial rule, and the growing impact of the worldwide market on emerging countries' rural poor.

Scholars in this discipline have looked at how different ethnic groups, classes, races, and genders generate environmental knowledge and environmental actions. They are adamant about emphasising empirical involvement with various social groups, their stakes, and solutions to social-environmental issues. Political Ecology emphasises the importance of larger economic, political, and cultural discourses in determining people's attitudes toward environmental issues.

Assignment B

Answer the following questions in about 250 words each.

Q3) Examine the main features the Anti-dam movements in India. (10)

Ans) Prior to independence, India had a small number of dams, but that number has increased since then. The dams were built largely to manage flooding, provide water, generate hydroelectric power, and, most critically, provide irrigation. There were only roughly 300 large dams in India at the time of independence. The dams were named Multiple River Valley Projects as a result. The total had nearly risen to around 4000 by the year 2000, with more than half of them constructed between 1971 and 1989. Because of its elegance, our first Prime Minister, Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, proudly termed dams the Temples of Modern India in post-independence India. Dams were designed to bring the rural agricultural economy and the urban industrial sector together.

When Nehru launched the Bhakra Nangal Dam on the river Sutlej in 1955, he introduced a new nomenclature for dams in modern India. The dams were expected to be the foundations of the new India's progress. However, since the 1980s, India's public investments in large dams have been beset by controversy, with the Sardar Sarovar Project at the centre of a long-running debate that has encompassed the entire country. The Narmada Andolan would serve to draw attention to a few of the concerns that characterise our country's water shortage. Let us look into these issues because they accurately show the country's developing environmental problems.

The Narmada River's Sardar Sarovar Project was one of India's most powerful and costly multi-purpose river valley projects. As you may already aware, the river is shared by Gujarat, Rajasthan, and Madhya Pradesh, thus there have always been problems around the project. The project was supposed to irrigate 1.8 million hectares of land in Gujarat and Rajasthan and provide drinking water to over 40 million people. The dam would have a hydropower installed capacity of around 1450 watts for the following thirty years. As a result, the dam exploded with lofty pledges and difficult-to-follow commitments.

Q4) What do you understand by the term ecofeminism? (10)

Ans) Ecofeminism, also known as ecological feminism, is a feminist discourse that has been referred to as a branch of feminism. The word "ecofeminism" was coined by the French feminist Françoise d'Eaubonne in 1974 and gained prominent in the late 1970s and 1980s environmental movements.

Its goal was to address the following ideas:

  1. Women and nature are inextricably linked in a variety of ways.

  2. Patriarchal systems and organisations handle them in a similar and hierarchical manner across nations and societies.

  3. Because women are inextricably linked to nature, exploitation of nature may and should be viewed as exploitation of women as well.

  4. In the guise of progress, patriarchal forces oppress, exploit, and assault women and the environment.

Women, the third world, peasantry, tribals, and other marginalised people, according to ecofeminists, are all victims of maldevelopment. At the same time, we cannot dispute that they are classic knowledge repository agents. They cannot be reduced to mere victims of the masculine world's development. Communities on the margins are capable of taking action and questioning exploitation, and they can resist the disparities generated by maldevelopment. What is required is a shift in our thinking in order for a new intellectual ecological paradigm to emerge. Ecofeminism's relevance can be summarised as follows: Women know first-hand what it's like to be victims of violence and exploitation, and their direct interaction with the environment is what drives them. They have a thorough understanding of nature, forests, and ecosystems, as well as a strong commitment to environmental protection and preservation. They become forerunners in fixing environmental concerns since they are ingrained in nature.

Q5) How is material desires socially constructed? Explain with examples. (10)

Ans) Constructionists claim that nature does not reveal itself in an unmediated state and always necessitates interpretation, mediation, and discourses about it. It is based on the notion that human knowledge is socially generated rather than passively absorbed from the environment. Language, collective symbols, technologies, socialisation, political debate, everyday behaviours, cultural beliefs, and values are all social dimensions. Any animal that is socially classed and categorised as a 'cat,' for example, will be understood as such by society.

People have grown up hearing and believing that a cat is an animal with specific characteristics. The topic of ‘social production of reality' is examined in depth by Peter Berger and Thomas Luckmann. They think that human encounters lead to the development of conceptions about human behaviour, which then become ingrained in social habits and institutionalised. Our understanding of the universe and reality is dependent on our perceptions of reality, which are based on our experiences in social circumstances, during interactions, and socialisation.

Gould and others remark that human needs and desires are primarily controlled by pre-existing production conditions when they investigate the nature of consumer choice, which extends beyond man's physiological necessities. They argue that want is socially produced, and material desires are mostly constructed by material producers, following Schiller. Transformations of material demands into human needs, according to Gould and others, is a social process including production decisions. And, rather than consumer preferences, the industry shapes the shape of the markets. In order to promote a culture of mass consumerism, captains of industry partnered with leaders of advertising companies. This is one of the reasons why an increase in productive output leads to an increase in personal consumption.

Assignment C

Write a note on the following in about 100 words each.

Q6) Beej Bachao Andolan (6)

Ans) This campaign was started in the late 1980s by a group of activists from the Hemwal Valley of Tehri, led by Vijay Jardhari, a farmer and social activist. The 'Beej Bachao Andolan' (Save the Seeds Movement) began in Jardhargaon, Uttarakhand's Tehri district. As you may be aware, due to the arrival of western technology, traditional agricultural resources and techniques are rapidly dwindling. Before the Green Revolution, there were roughly 3000 different varieties of rice in Garhwal; currently there are just 320.

The 'Beej Bachao Andolan' began in 1989 as a public awareness effort to persuade farmers to abandon income crops such as peas, potatoes, and soybeans in favour of indigenous methods such as the 'Baranaja.' It represented a classic agricultural system of mixed farming and intercropping of twelve species. It was essentially a movement to reintroduce tried-and-true agricultural practises in opposition to agro-business policies that favoured primarily the wealthy. Instead, this campaign supported villages' traditional ways, such as utilising walnut and neem leaves to manage pests. This trend is noteworthy since it not only increased yields but also exacerbated soil fertility and biodiversity in agriculture. Arundhati Roy, the 2002 Booker Prize winner, donated Rs 1.5 lakhs to Beej Bachao Andolan in recognition of the locals' outstanding seed conservation abilities.

Q7) Medha Patkar (6)

Ans) Medha Patkar is an Indian social activist who fights for the rights of Adivasis, dalits, farmers, labourers, and women who face discrimination in India. She is a graduate of TISS, a prestigious Indian university. She was astounded by the scale of tribal displacement caused by the construction of the Sardar Sarovar Project dam on the Narmada River, and thus founded the Narmada Charangrast Samiti, or Narmada Oustees Association, which eventually evolved into the Narmada Bachao Andolan in collaboration with Gandhian organisations in the states of Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra.

Medha spoke with the valley's residents to have a better understanding of their suffering and sorrow. The majority of them had no idea what the government was up to or what kind of rehabilitation they would receive. The state pleaded with the World Bank the following year, 1986, to support the Sardar Sarovar Project. Patkar realised that the World Bank had to be kept from stopping the construction of the Sardar Sarovar dam in order to put the project on hold. As a show of opposition to the idea, Medha and her colleagues marched from Madhya Pradesh to the dam site. The 36-day march became a symbol of unity among the Narmada Valley's neighbouring states, as well as a direct challenge to the government and the World Bank.

Q8) Anthropocene (6)

Ans) In scientific circles, the word "Anthropocene" is thrown around casually. Archean to Anthropocene: From Archean to Anthropocene was the theme of the Geological Society of America's annual meeting in 2011. The key to the future is the past. Though it is difficult to determine the period's original date, certain assumptions can be made based on meteorological data. Its beginnings can be traced back to the Industrial Revolution.

There were numerous examples of human impact, such as increasing human influence on land use, ecosystems, biodiversity, species extinction, and climate change, particularly global change. With the arrival of men in the Quaternary period of the Cenozoic era, such changes began to manifest on the world. Scientists argued that the proposal was made a long time ago. Other scientists have suggested that "the commencement of the Anthropocene should be extended back many thousand years, making the Anthropocene basically synonymous with the present term, Holocene," based on geologic evidence.

Q9) The notion of risk (6)

Ans) The concept of "risk" and its repercussions pervade decision-making processes in each person's life and business outcomes, as well as in society as a whole. Risk, and how it is managed, are indeed important parts of decision-making at all levels. Profit potential must be weighed against the hazards they entail, both in company and in personal life. Solutions to challenges (global, political, financial, and personal) must be assessed on a risk-cost, cost-benefit basis rather than on an absolute basis. You might be shocked to learn that the word "risk" is difficult to define, given its pervasive presence in our daily lives.

What does it mean, for example, when a businessperson says, "This idea should be rejected because it is too risky"? Does this imply that the loss amount is excessive or that the loss's projected value is excessive? Is the project's estimated profit too little to justify the risk it entails and the potential losses it could cause? In this context, the term "risk" (as used in the English language) is unclear. Any of the previous interpretations could be used. As a result, professionals try to distinguish between these various interpretations by using distinct terminology.

Q10) Globalisation (6)

Ans) Globalization, sometimes known as globalisation, is the connection and integration of people, businesses, and governments all over the world. Because of advancements in transportation and communication technology, globalisation has accelerated since the 18th century. Global connections have resulted in an increase in international trade as well as the interchange of ideas, beliefs, and culture. Globalization is essentially a business-to-business interaction and integration process with social and cultural implications. Dissensions and diplomacy, on the other hand, are an important element of the history of globalisation, as well as modern globalisation.

Globalization, in its most basic form, refers to the world becoming increasingly interconnected. Air travel, containerized marine transportation, international economic agreements and legal conventions, and the Internet have made countries more connected than ever before. Outsourcing, free trade, and worldwide supply chains are all examples of globalisation in the business sector.

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