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Time and temperance: How perceptions about time shape forest ethics and practice

Duncan Macqueen

, 24 pages

We each have perceptions of how much time we have left and what we should do with it. These perceptions have implications for our treatment of forests. We can no longer take the longevity of trees and forest ecosystems for granted. This paper takes a preliminary look at some questions that deserve our attention: What is time? How much time is left? Should we adopt a precautionary approach as a result? What is it worthwhile for us to do with time - what constitutes value within it? Does value change over time? Can we share values without sharing time? It concludes with some suggestions for changing our forest ethic and for practical forest decision-making. It is also a call to personal and collective temperance.

Publication information

  • IIED code: 13507IIED
  • Published: Sep 2005 - IIED
  • Theme: Forests
  • Language: English

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