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Restoring ourselves to nature: ethics and ecology in an urban watershed Thompson, Alison Kathleen 1998

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Restoring Ourselves to Nature: ethics and ecology in an urban watershed by Alison Kathleen Thompson BA Hon. Dalhousie University, 1994 A Thesis Submitted in Partial Fulfilment of The Requirements for the Degree of Master of Arts in The Faculty of Graduate Studies (Department of Philosophy) We accept this thesis as conforming to the required standard The University of British Columbia August 1998 ©Alison Kathleen Thompson, 1998 In presenting this thesis in partial fulfilment of the requirements for an advanced degree at the University of British Columbia, I agree that the Library shall make it freely available for reference and study. 1 further agree that permission for extensive copying of this thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the head of my department or by his or her representatives. It is understood that copying or publication of this thesis for financial gain shall not be allowed without my written permission. The University of British Columbia Vancouver, Canada Department of DE-6 (2/88) 11 Abstract Environmental philosophy has expanded and diversified greatly since its beginning. Yet as applied philosophies, environmental philosophy and environmental ethics have not engaged in descriptive ethics in the way that biomedical ethics has. I will suggest that the failure to do so has meant that environmental philosophy has had limited impact on environmental practices such as restoration ecology. In this thesis I will attempt to reposition philosophy's ethical spotlight upon what I feel to be the most ethically relevant features of the practice of restoration ecology, and to facilitate this, I develop a case-study. A history of the Musqueam Watershed restoration project and its participants' objectives and their operating policies will be given, followed by an ethical analysis of the project. I will argue on several counts that getting restoration right involves more than paying careful attention to the finished product, as the philosophers Elliot and Katz have suggested. Getting restoration right involves placing the practice within a broad social and political context where process becomes as crucial as outcome. This will require an examination of the way in which interested stakeholders value nature, as well as an examination of the democratic structure and mandate of the Musqueam Watershed Committee. I will argue that restoration projects ought to be conducted in a manner that exploits the inherent participatory potential of restoration ecology. Finally, I will argue for the inclusion of ecosystems within the human socio-political context, and thus suggest the replacement of the Wilderness Paradigm, or the Hyperreal Paradigm with a Garden Paradigm for human relations with nature, in the hope that in this way we will restore ourselves to nature. Table of Contents i i i Abstract ii List of Figures iv Introduction 1 Chapter 1 Philosophical Context 7 Chapter 2 Introducing the Musqueam Watershed Project 25 Chapter 3 Conceptualizing Restoration 45 Chapter 4 Balancing Values and Stakeholder Interests 71 Chapter 5 Paradigm Shifts: Wilderness, Hyperreality and Gardens 94 Works Cited 124 Selected Bibliography 129 Appendix 1 130 Appendix 2 131 iv List of Figures Figure 1. General diagramatic representation of environmental philosophy 11 Figure 2. The Organizational Structure of M E S H 34 1 Introduction Defining Ecological Restoration In this thesis the practice of the ecological restoration of ecosystems will be examined ethically to determine whether or not the practice is based, as some have suggested, upon unsound philosophical assumptions about humanity's place in nature. The practice itself is based on the belief that the active restoration of damaged ecosystems, when coupled with preservation and management of key natural areas, will eventually become an accepted and vital element of strategies to maintain biological diversity and function. It is important first, however, to be clear about what exactly the practice is: how we define this new practice of restoration will have a large impact on what features of the practice we find ethically relevant. The practice has sparked, as many disciplines do in their infancy, much debate over its meaning and legitimacy, even among practitioners themselves. Dispute originated around the very term "restoration" and this debate has become the semantic eye of the conceptual storm, so to speak. We need to ask whether the debate over an appropriate name or definition is merely one of semantics, which cannot contribute to the conceptualization of the practice, i.e. what it is and what it hopes to accomplish. To believe this would be to deny the power of rhetoric to shape thought. As philosopher-anthropologist and restorationist, Eric Higgs says, "an agreeable definition forms the base of the larger project of deciding what constitutes good restoration" (Higgs 1996, 2). Rhetoric not only shapes, but reflects thought, and so any definition for restoration ecology will also reflect how people conceptualize the practice. The term 'restoration', then, implies in the most basic sense, the replacement or giving back of something that has been lost. Most practitioners now agree that 'restoration' is actually an unfortunate term that seems to have stuck: it is unfortunate because most will intuit, upon hearing the term that 'restoration' is a technological fix that aims to restore some kind of historical continuity to a degraded ecosystem. This limited and narrow definition of restoration raises many questions. What about cases where a literal restoration is not even a hypothetical possibility? To what time period does one restore, and why? Suppose, as is suggested by William Stevens, that the reason for restoring to a particular point in time is because there are early land surveys which can inform what the ecosystem looked like, and consequently they can guide restorationists (Stevens 288). Does this alone justify the choice of time-slice? What if there are several European settlers' land surveys, as well as a wealth of knowledge held by indigenous people about the state of the ecosystem ~ how does one decide which source to use as a guide? As Higgs asks, why is one time slice preferable to another (1996, 3)? The answer to this question is complex, and is not one which is easily answered by ecology alone: social and political factors must also be considered. Thus, the problem of the literal meaning of the term restoration raises the question of whether or not historic continuity and replication is really at the heart of the practice. Do we really mean to say that a restoration must replicate an ecosystem's condition at a static point in time, or could we talk about replicating as closely as possible, a level of ecosystemic functioning? Or is it possible to speak about restoring ecosystem health or integrity? The Society for Ecological Restoration [SER]'s most recent, official definition of restoration ecology reflects the concern, "that historic standards should not be taken too literally" (Higgs 1996, 3). The current definition that was adopted by the SER Board in October 1996 is as follows: Ecological restoration is the process of assisting the recovery and management of ecological integrity. Ecological integrity includes a critical range of variability in 3 biodiversity, ecological processes and structures, regional and historical context, and sustainable cultural practices (SER 1997).1 Anyone who has been involved in the task of defining the concepts of ecosystem health and integrity will know that the task is quite daunting and is considered by many to be ultimately a flawed endeavor2. Many would agree, however, that a merely technical definition for ecological restoration, (ecological) health or (ecological) integrity will simply not suffice.3 However, I submit that anyone who looks beyond the most basic, literal meaning of restoration will recognize that there is more to it than a technological endeavor to replicate historic states. The Aims of this Thesis It is the goal of this thesis to expand the context in which restoration is viewed by philosophers, in order to provide a truly normative analysis of restoration ecology. Only in this expanded context can we do justice to the practice of ecological restoration as a holistic endeavor to rectify the problem of environmental degradation. In Chapter One, I will endeavor to explain why environmental philosophy has had so little impact on environmental practices and their practitioners. At least a part of the answer to this question is that philosophers have tended ignored the complex realities of the practice. Throughout the thesis it will be shown that the failure of some philosophers to attend to the real-world context in which restoration is done lThe SER Policy Working Group is currently attempting to provide a detailed description of the attributes of the definition which will eventually accompany the above definition. 2For more on why the concept of ecosystem health may be a flawed metaphor in this context, see: Lilly-Marlene Russow, "Ecosystem Health: An Objective Evaluation?" in Ecosystem Health, 4.4 (1995): 363-369. 3For an example of a philosophical approach to the task of defining ecological integrity, see Laura Westra, An Environmental Proposal for Ethics: the principle of integrity, Roman and Littlefield, 1994. 4 renders much of their argument against the practice ineffectual. In Chapter 2 a case study is introduced and along with this history of the particular restoration project, the relevant policies that bear on the practice are discussed. It will be shown in Chapter 3 that restoration is not just a manifestation of the strong anthropocentric world-view — those who practice restoration ecology have a far more biocentric view. I will also argue in Chapter 3 that restoration ecology is rarely seen by practitioners purely as an engineering endeavor. The philosophical issues being addressed differ, however, from the philosophical issues that are addressed by philosophers in general, and from the issues that the two main philosophers who have written on the subject, namely Elliot and Katz, have chosen to address4. This is not to say that environmental philosophy has nothing to contribute — that all question posed by philosophers are irrelevant — but we should be selective: which questions are germane to restoration and which answers are helpful to restorationists? Chapter 3 also explores the connection between the way in which people value nature, and their interests in restoring particular ecosystems. Stakeholder interests are shaped by the things that people value about the ecosystem, and it shall be shown that there are many different reasons for wanting to participate as a stakeholder in the restoration of an ecosystem. In Chapter 4, the question of whether or not non-human animals should be considered interested stakeholders for the purposes of restoration ecology is addressed, as well as the process by which stakeholder interests are balanced. In order to ensure that interests are balanced in a just manner, the principles of equal consideration and equitable participation are discussed, in conjunction with the 4 Elliot and Katz have written the seminal articles in philosophy on the subject of restoration. It is their works upon which I shall focus my attention for much of the thesis, in an attempt to show that their definition of restoration is too limited, and consequently, their criticisms of the practice are not entirely justified. So, although they do have valid philosophical problems with the practice as they conceive of it, they are not justified in claiming that the practice itself is immoral, because they have not considered the other socio-political contexts in which restoration is practiced. Failing to consider the other contexts within which restoration is practiced is a serious problem, for it tends to undermine the validity of their claims, as we shall see. 5 principle of welfare. A case is also made for the adoption of the consensus model of decision making. It is also argued that only by adopting these principles can the inherent participatory potential of restoration ecology be exploited in a just manner. The participatory potential of restoration ecology needs to be exploited because it is the practice's potential community building (in the biocentric sense of community) wherein lies its great promise for improving human relations with nature. It is this biocentric approach that leads many, myself included, to believe that the practice of restoration ecology holds much promise as a means to help find humanity's place in the natural world. The endeavor to improve human relations with the natural world must include preservation and even the development of a new ethical paradigm for human relations with nature. Indeed the term ecological restoration implies a more biocentric approach to environmental problem-solving than the more narrow approaches of animal liberation/rights philosophies. In Chapter 5 then, I will explore what I term the wilderness paradigm for human relations with nature that has been so influential and pervasive in North America. I will argue that is does not serve as a helpful metaphor owing to the fact that by definition, humans are excluded from the wilderness, and thus it cannot teach us anything about how to live in nature. Next, I will examine the "hyperreality" paradigm, which is at the opposite end of the spectrum from the wilderness paradigm. It will be shown that human recreations of the natural that aim to improve upon the real, and which are sold to the public as commodified experiences, such as the Disney Corporation's Wilderness Lodge, are redefining our society's concept of the natural with the result that our sense of moral responsibility for nature is diminished. Finally, then, it is suggested that we look to the garden for inspiration and for the clues to where we fit in to the natural world. It is in the garden that we can foster improved relations with nature, and increase our sense of belonging in the natural world. It is argued that restoration is gardening on a community scale, and thus has the potential to restore not only historical continuity, or ecological integrity, but also humans to nature. Following their lead then, I intend to follow Light and Higgs into "new territory in the philosophy of ecological restoration that speaks to the ongoing debate among restorationists over the role of humanistic concerns in evaluating restoration practices" (Light and Higgs 230). The main question to be posed by the thesis is, then: What is good ecological restoration? This will mean addressing not only the ecological engineering aspects of the work, but also the social, political and paradigmatic context within which restoration is practiced. Unlike the philosopher Katz, who claims "the problem for an applied environmental ethic is the determination of the moral value of this artifact [a restored ecosystem]" (Katz 1992, 234), I believe there are additional issues that need to be addressed which concern the process by which restorations occur. Questions I intend to look at concern the organizational structure of such projects — how are they run? How are decisions made? Who is involved? Whose interests are represented? More broadly speaking still, what can restoration work tell us about how we interact with nature? Can restoration help us forge a new relationship with nature that is more harmonious than the one we currently have? 7 Chapter 1 — Philosophical Context Even the broadest kind of approach that has been advanced in environmental ethics to date...is quite inadequate for addressing may of the environmental problems that may people are vitally concerned with on a day-today basis (Fox 16). Environmental philosophy has diversified and expanded significantly in its relatively short history, becoming a branch of philosophy which now encompasses many differing and often contrary views. Environmental philosophers have wrestled with both the underpinnings of Western Philosophy and applied philosophy. It is curious, therefore, that environmental philosophy has had a rather limited impact on policy makers5, scientists and other practitioners that one would expect and desire for an applied philosophy. Part of the problem is that what environmental philosophers talk about is of limited help for the people involved in environmental practice whom it is meant to influence and aid. It is likely that part of the reason environmental ethics has not enjoyed the widespread impact as its sister branches of applied ethics is that much of the debate has remained at a theoretical and generalist level. Consequently, the scope of the literature in environmental ethics is somewhat narrow and tends to be of more than little interest to anyone other than philosophers. A case in point is the practice of restoration ecology. Now a growing professional, lay, state and corporate practice in North America about which there are two dedicated journals, ecological restoration has received little attention from environmental philosophers. The few philosophers who have written on the subject have had little influence on the practice. Why is this, and how can environmental philosophers achieve what their counterparts in bioethics have in terms of their ability to contribute in a meaningful way to policy and practice? If this failure to influence is at least partially attributable to environmental philosophy's ignorance of contextual details and lack of interest in descriptive ethics and normative ethics, then perhaps we should look 5 One notable exception to this is the animal rights movement, which has in fact had a significant impact on policy makers. 8 to the evolution of the method of thinking within the practice of bioethics for a clue to solving this problem. Before we do this, however, it ought to be noted that there are likely other reasons for the relative success that biomedical ethics has enjoyed in influencing the practice of medicine and medical research. There are regulatory bodies that exist today in medical practice and research, such as hospital ethics committees and research ethics committees which simply do not exist in environmental practice. Of course, medical practice is a better defined field than that of environmental practice, which can partly explain why there are fewer committees concerned with environmental ethical issues than biomedical ethics issues, be they ad hoc or more permanent committees with broad purviews. Environmental practice involves people from many different and varied professions, too, in a way that medicine does not, despite the fields of specialization within medical practice itself, thus making it difficult for philosophers to target their audiences. Yet another reason why environmental philosophers may have a harder time reaching practitioners is that the media plays a large role in promoting bioethical issues in the minds not only of the public but also in the minds of practitioners. Medical issues, owing to the fact that everyone has concern over human health, generally get more coverage in the media. Fewer people are as concerned over the health of a few lonely salmon, unless it directly affects their livelihood. In addition there is the fact that the media is often used by politicians to gauge public opinions of scientific issues, and this may cause politicians to focus their concern, and funding for ethics committees, on medical rather than environmental issues (Wilkie). Thus, the fact that coverage in the media of ethical issues having to do with the environment is far less than the coverage of ethical issues in biomedicine could also help to explain the lack of impact environmental philosophy has had on practitioners. I intend, however, to focus on the problems that are internal to environmental philosophy itself which may explain why philosophers are not reaching environmental practitioners. To do this, I will look to the evolution of biomedical ethics to find other clues as to why it may be that it has had more influence on practitioners and researchers in medicine. 9 Sumner and Boyle, in the introduction to their volume, Philosophical Perspectives on Bioethics. give a concise and optimistic account of the changes in the methods of thinking in bioethics. They tell a story which begins when there were only principles and top down approaches: moral justification flowed from lofty moral theory down to particular cases. Virtually the same principles were applied to all situations, and any moral judegment was made in deference to those principles. These principles were termed by some the "Georgetown Mantra", in reference to the four principles laid down by Beauchamp and Childress (1979): beneficence, nonmaleficence, autonomy and justice. But arguments about which moral theory is best, and principlism's limited ability to help resolve the concrete dilemmas faced by practitioners led some bioethicists to develop a bottom up, contextualized approach. Among these new methods of moral reasoning are casuistry, particularism or contextualism, feminine and feminist ethics. However, this approach created new problems. In the absence of principles, how does one decide what the ethically relevant features of cases are? How do we know when to draw ethical parallels between cases? Most bottom-up approaches now recognize that there is a place for principles and more generalized thinking within their methods, and vice versa. This is largely owing to the introduction of the Wide Reflective Equilibrium, which showed that some common ground can be found between the different camps of thought and which offered the hope of at least a partial reconciliation between the "highlanders" and the "lowlanders", as Norman Daniels terms the two camps.6 Thus, moral thinking in the practice of bioethics is often now a blend of the generalist and the particularist approaches. It is possible now to imagine the day when the two terms become obsolete. Sumner 6Daniels, Norman. "Wide Reflective Equilibrium in Practice." In Philosophical Perspectives on Bioethics. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1996. Daniels gives an excellent, and more detailed account than I can here of the differences in bioethical methodologies in this article, which includes his witty and insightful Brief Report from the Battle Zone in the Land of Bioethics. 10 and Boyle see this blending of approaches to ethics as the way forward, not only for bioethics, but for all applied ethics: While there are important respects in which bioethics differs from other areas in applied ethics—such as environmental ethics or business ethics--it is unlikely to be unique in its basic methodology. The lessons learned here should therefore be transferable to these cognate areas. More important, they should tell us a great deal about how to go about doing ethics unmodified which, however theoretical it may become, remains ultimately a practical enterprise (8). Returning to ecological restoration, then, what is needed is a re-examination by philosophers of the ethically relevant features of the practice. Just as in bioethics there was a need for the discourse to move away from the theoretical towards the contextual, so too in applied environmental philosophy is there a need for a better blending of the theoretical and the practical. Let us look for a moment at what has been keeping environmental philosophers so preoccupied with the theoretical. The question of how we value nature has been of the utmost importance to the development of discourse in environmental philosophy. Whether one is a strong or weak anthropocentrist, or an inherentist or an intrinsicalist is considered definitive: the battle lines within the discipline are not drawn between "highlanders" and "lowlanders," as they are in bioethics, but rather between the "deep" and the "shallow". If we were to locate the "deep" and the "shallow" in Daniels' terms, both would be considered to be "highlanders", in that they are both operating at the theoretical level. In addition to and associated with the question of how one ought to value nature, philosophers have been arguing about what is responsible for the environmental crisis, and about what is required in light of their findings to remedy the crisis. The "deep" philosophies look to the more metaphysical roots of the environmental crisis, where the shallow philosophers believe the source of the crisis to be political. Of course there is some overlap between the camps and the categories are not mutually exclusive, but in general the discourse is divided as follows: the three main divisions in environmental philosophy are between radical ecophilosophy, environmental ethics, and anthropocentric reformism (See Figure 1). Figure 1. General diagramatic representation of environmental philosophy Radical ecophilosophy includes deep ecology, ecofeminism and social ecology. All three claim their analysis discloses the "conceptual, attitudinal and social origins"(Zimmerman vii) of the environmental crisis. They also claim that the only solution to the problem of environmental degradation is a radical shift in our cultural paradigm. Deep ecology believes that anthropocentrism is at the root of the problem; ecofeminism believes that patriarchy is responsible for the crisis; and social ecology believes that social hierarchy is at the heart of the problem. Abolish these cultural paradigms and one will eliminate the causes of the environmental crises say the radical ecophilosophers. Of course, this is easier said than done. Anthropocentric reformists believe the radical ecophilosophers to be naive and perhaps overly optimistic in hoping for such a paradigm shift to occur (Zimmerman viii). It is humanity's greed, ignorance and failure to think in the long term with enlightened self-interest that is the cause of environmental destruction. Prudent allocation of resources, legislation and changes to public policy are what the 12 anthropocentric reformist believes are necessary to stop the abuse of natural resources and the pollution of the environment. Lastly, we have the environmental ethicists who believe it necessary to extend moral consideration to other, non-human animals. This group can be subdivided into the weak anthropocentrists, who believe that humans are intrinsically more valuable than other living things, but that there are reasons why one should not treat other organisms instrumentally, and ethicists who are more radical. The far end of the environmental ethics spectrum where the radical environmental ethicists reside begins to look a lot like the space inhabited by radical ecophilosophy. Back towards the weak anthropocentrist end of things, there are those whose views begin to overlap with the views of social ecologists. Thus, we cannot say that social ecologists necessarily share the views of the deep ecologist where anthropocentrism is concerned. Ecofeminism being a broad term which incorporates many different philosophical positions, from Marxist feminism to radical feminism, overlaps with all but the anthropocentric reformist. It remains fundamentally, however, a radical ecophilosophy owing to its call for an end to patriarchy and to all forms of oppression. And finally, there are those who we can term strong anthropocentrists. This is the view that there is only instrumental value to nature, and does not admit that there are limits to the uses to which we can put the natural world. Warwick Fox calls this view the "unrestrained exploitation and expansionist" view (Fox 3). It does not admit that there are limits to growth apart from those imposed by humans. The instrumental value of the natural world, then, can only be derived from the "physical transformation value", where the natural world is used to further human ends. Although categorization is complex, then, those are the basic divisions within philosophical environmental discourse. So what do these different factions think of ecological restoration? The easiest answer is that they don't: one can only speculate about what they think, because a mere handful of philosophers have chosen to apply their notions to the practice of ecological restoration. One would be tempted to say that, owing to its inherently pragmatic and hands-on approach to ecologicaL problems, restoration ecology might be sanctioned by Deep Ecology, which is a 13 practice that is "aimed at directly experiencing connectedness with nature,[my emphasis]"(Callicot). Although ecological restoration may not be explicitly aimed at this, it will be argued that it certainly has the inherent potential to promote a more intimate relationship between its practitioners and the natural world. For this reason, ecological restoration would be sanctioned by the Deep Ecologist, if only because of its potential to restore humans to nature — a concept explored in Chapter 5. I suggest however, that without closer examination of what ecological restoration is all about, this exercise in philosophical categorization is perfunctory. As one would expect, the consequence of the ethical discourse's failure to become grounded in practice in any significant way has been an alienation of philosophers from the things that concern those practicing ecological restoration. The failure to examine such things as the motivations of people who practice or support ecological restoration, and the social and political context in which the practitioners of restoration ecology work and move has meant that much of the debate in environmental ethics has been of little help or interest to the practitioners of restoration ecology. Indeed as Light and Higgs note, "there has been almost no productive interplay between practitioners and philosophers. "(Light and Higgs 232) They go on to argue that philosophers should be tempering their reflections on the environmental with the "pragmatic imperatives of environmental practice" (qtd. in Light and Higgs 230). Sadly, the two seminal works in philosophy on the subject of ecological restoration demonstrate this lack of knowledge of the practice. Robert Elliot's "Faking Nature" and Eric Katz's "The Big Lie: Human Restoration of Nature," seem to have set the tone and content of the tiny discourse in environmental philosophy on the subject of ecological restoration, with some exceptions7. Had these philosophers a better understanding of the practice of restoration ecology, and of practitioners' philosophical assumptions, they would have realized that the process of restoration is at least as ethically relevant as the product. This is not to claim that what Elliot and 7There is at least one notable exception to this, by Michael Vincent McGinnis, "Deep Ecology and the Foundations of Restoration", in Inquiry 39 1996: 203-217. 14 Katz have to say about the product of restoration is not ethically relevant, at least to some degree. For if their assumptions about the kinds of attitudes restoration ecology is a manifestation of were correct, their moral indignation would be entirely justified. Indeed, we shall see in the final chapter that the hyperreal version of the natural, brought to us by the Disney Corporation is an example of what Elliot and Katz describe. So although these two philosophers do have a valid point, they are aiming their criticism at a very narrow sub-section of restoration practitioners without realizing it, and consequently they condemn the entire practice. By ignoring the who, what, why, where, when and how of restoration they have practiced philosophy from their arm chairs and have subsequently ignored many ethically interesting and important issues that pertain to restoration ecology. Katz and Elliot define restoration ecology in the narrowest and most pessimistic of ways, and thus they are incapable of perceiving the enormous potential of the practice to transform not only landscape, but human relations with nature. First then, Elliot and Katz have chosen to focus their discussions on the nature of the values that are either present in, or absent from, restored ecosystems. The very limited view of what restoration is leads them to focus only on the finished product. Elliot claims that what he calls the "restoration thesis" entails "that natural areas may have their value restored by means of the techniques of environmental engineering" (Elliot 81). He claims that what results is in fact something of far lesser value and he compares a restored ecosystem to an art forgery. Katz, taking his cues from Elliot, explores the notion that a restored ecosystem is an artifact, and consequently of lesser value than the original ecosystem. Katz sees restoration policy and its advocates as misguided: I question the environmentalists' concern for the restoration of nature and argue against the optimistic view that humanity has the obligation and ability to repair or reconstruct damaged natural systems. This conception of environmental policy and environmental ethics is based on a misconception of natural reality and a misguided understanding of the human place in the natural environment. On a simple level, it is the same kind of "technological fix" that has engendered the environmental crisis. Human science and technology will fix, repair, and improve natural processes. (Katz 1992, 232) 15 Leaving aside for the moment Katz's notions concerning the motivation to restore, it is evident that for Katz, restoration is nothing more than a technological endeavor, with dubious goals. Although one cannot claim that all practitioners do not subscribe to the restoration thesis as Elliot defines it, it is my intent to show that this conception of restoration as mere technological fix is not necessarily accurate: it is usually a much more dynamic practice which includes an element of social ritual. Thus, one must evaluate morally not only the end state of a restored ecosystem, but also the means by which the restoration is conducted and the aims of the practitioners. Once again drawing a parallel to bioethics to illustrate where Katz and Elliot have gone wrong let us consider what a bioethicist would say of a colleague who focuses all his or her moral scrutiny on the actual physical outcome of, say, reconstructive surgery. Not only is the colleague preoccupied with the values instantiated by the reconstructed body parts, but she also completely ignores the patient's motivations and the circumstances of the treatment.. Any bioethicist who insisted on passing moral judgement on the practice of reconstructive surgery as a whole, after having ignored such ethically relevant features as, for example, whether the surgery was therapeutic or cosmetic, in favour of evaluating the actual, physical reconstructed body part, would be told he or she had not finished the job. What is involved in getting the moral analysis of restoration right then? Well, we can start with the question, What is restoration and who is practicing it? and then move to What does getting all aspects of restoration right actually involve? By asking these questions, we are immediately forced to contextualize our approach, and this means expanding the breadth of our inquiry to include the process as well as the product of restoration. The term 'contextualization' deserves more attention. What is meant by contextualizing the approach is an examination of the social and political context within which restoration is practiced. For example, Elliot seems to think that it is only engineers, large corporations, and politicians who are involved in or advocates of restorative ecology (Elliot 81-2). In fact, the Society for Ecological Restoration is largely comprised of biologists, ecologists, anthropologists, and historians who are academics or professionals. In addition, the practice itself often involves 16 groups of community members young and old, sports clubs, and community centers. So not only are government agencies, both federal, provincial and municipal, engineers and business involved in the practice, but so are many other people. Contextualizing the approach, then involves looking at the realities of the practice, or as was mentioned before, the who, what, where, why, when and how of the practice. In order to do so, one ought really to engage in some descriptive ethics. Let us now turn to the motivations that Katz ascribes to those who restore ecosystems. In his article he takes a broad historical look at humanity's relationship with nature. He locates the cause of environmental destruction where a deep ecologist would: Katz looks to the past and sees only the dark shadow of the human project of the domination of nature, and traces restoration ecology's roots to the human desire to dominate and manipulate nature. Had Katz looked more closely, and located practitioners and advocates of ecological restoration within a specific social and political context, he would see the error of making such sweeping statements as the one that follows: A 'restored' nature is an artifact created to meet human satisfactions and interests. Thus, on the most fundamental level, [restoration] is an unrecognized manifestation of the insidious dream of the human domination of nature. Once and for all, humanity will demonstrate its mastery of nature by 'restoring' and repairing the degraded ecosystems of the biosphere. Cloaked in an environmental consciousness, human power will reign supreme. (Katz 1992, 232) Is this insidious attitude really what drives restoration? As will be shown later, in Chapter 5, it is possible to find evidence of such an attitude in projects that will be termed "hyperreal", rather than "restorative". But it is doubtful that this attitude is as pervasive in the practice of restoration ecology as Katz makes it out to be. Sadly, Katz's self-confessed emotional reaction to restoration ecology blinds him. He claims his "initial reaction to the possibility of restoration policy is visceral: I am outraged by the idea that a technologically created "nature" will be passed off as reality" (Katz 1992, 234). Katz's fierce reaction has blinded him not only to the realities of restoration ecology, but also to its possibilities. The importance of the human imagination in seeing a way through the environmental crisis is recognized by many, including the social 17 ecologists. John Clark states that seeing the possibilities for the future are an important, if not crucial element of social ecology: A necessary condition for the success of this project of social and spiritual regeneration is the liberation of the imagination. Bookchin has rightly said that the creation of an ecological community must be a "work of art" .... One of the greatest insights of social ecology is its comprehension that the flowering of the human spirit and personality is a continuation of natural evolution (Clark 351). Had Katz looked more dispassionately, he would have seen that restoration as a practice can be located on the cusp of the anthropocentric, dualistic conceptual framework that engendered environmental destruction, and an emerging, more biocentric framework in which nature and culture are reconciled. I will be attempting to refine Katz's blinkered attempt to locate restoration ecology within a social context, and I will show that although he is partially right about its origins in the anthropocentric view of the environment, most people involved in restoration ecology have the liberation of nature, not its domination, in their hearts and minds. Katz fails in his attempt to explain the motivation for restoration because he believes restoration to be a technological fix practiced only by engineers. The failure of Katz and Elliot to see the real context of restoration, causes them to believe that restoration ecology is only practiced by anthropocentric technicians. Methodology The question of how best to contextualize one's approach should be raised. We can attack these questions from our armchairs, or we can get our hands dirty and look at one example of a grassroots restoration project to see how the problems raised above manifest themselves; to see how serious they actually are, and to attempt to determine what philosophy can contribute that is heuristic and edifying for those involved in the endeavor to restore damaged and degraded systems. As was mentioned previously, the top-down approaches often tend to ignore ethically relevant features of people's situations but an approach which incorporates descriptive ethics can help to paint a more accurate moral picture. Thus, I have attempted to create a case study from 18 the project which I was able to become familiar with, and which I have attempted to describe ethically in the following chapters. To date, environmental philosophers have made very little attempt to create case studies in which they can engage in descriptive ethics, with the notable exception of the recent anthology of case studies in environmental ethics by Newton and Dillingham (1994). By looking at a real restoration project, we can focus on the issues that are germane to those who are doing the work of restoring ecosystems, and illustrate that perhaps there are issues that should be addressed that are currently being ignored in the philosophical literature. Having no formal training in sociology, anthropology, ethnography, or statistics, I am nevertheless aware that some may doubt the validity of any claims made on the basis of a sample of one. Of course they are right to some extent, but I see this as a starting place, where ethically relevant features of a case can be revealed and used to reference any future attempts to examine ethically ecological restoration from a position grounded in reality. I believe that there will be many features of the case I have selected that will be similar in an ethically significant way to many other restoration projects8. In order to familiarize myself with the subject of restoration ecology, I did a literature review of the relevant philosophical and non-philosophical materials. As was previously mentioned, the philosophical literature that pertains to restoration explicitly is relatively small. The two seminal articles in the philosophical literature are by Elliot and Katz. Elliot's now infamous article, "Faking Nature" was published in 1982. In it he argues that natural areas that have undergone destruction/exploitation cannot have their intrinsic value restored by techniques in environmental engineering. The belief that the restoration of intrinsic value is possible through the restoration of the ecosystem is what Elliot terms the "restoration thesis" (81). Elliot draws a 8For at least one example of a similar project see, Dennis Rogers-Martinez, "The Sinkyone Intertribal Park Project", in Restoration and Management Notes 10.1(1992): 64-69. This project is similar to the case study I will examine in that it involves a coalition of people, including First Nations people, who work together to restore degraded ecosystems. The philosophy which underlies the two projects are remarkable similar, too, in terms of their holistic approach to restoration ecology. 19 parallel to aesthetics, and he argues that a restored ecosystem is devoid of its intrinsic value in much the same way that an art forgery is devoid of the values that the original masterpiece instantiated. He also argues that part of the reason for this is that the historical continuity of a place is disrupted irrecoverably. Katz takes Elliot's article and develops it further. In 1985, Katz published his article entitled "Organism, Community and the 'Substitution' Problem" in which he argues for what he terms a community model which focuses on "both the functional value and the autonomous intrinsic value of natural entities in a system" (Katz 1985, 241). He is concerned in this article to avoid the problem encountered by holistic approaches to environmental philosophy which involve the failure to stress the distinction between the concepts of community and organism9. In 1991 Katz published an article specifically targeting restoration as the domination of nature in disguise, in which he examines ethically the significance of human intervention in nature (Katz 1991, 90-96). This article is perhaps the most damning attack in the philosophical literature upon the practice. An earlier version of his 1991 paper, which was only slightly different, was published after this previous one in 1992. He entitled this paper "The Big Lie: Human Restoration of Nature." The phrase, "the big lie" has become renowned in both the philosophical and non-philosophical literature on restoration, and is often used by those who agree with Katz to refer to restoration. Katz perpetuates in both these articles the concept, which originated with Elliot, of restoration as a technological fix. However, Katz does not believe that Elliot's comparison between the restored ecosystem and an art forgery is of great philosophical merit, and he chooses to focus upon the philosophical roots of the restoration thesis, as well as providing an analysis of the value of a restored ecosystem that does not rely on the likening to an art forgery. Another difference between the writings of Elliot and Katz is that Elliot very clearly defines what he means by restoration whereas Katz does not. Elliot provides a restoration scenario, where a mining company justifies is destruction of a landscape on the basis of the fact that they can later 9 We will see in this thesis that this at least partially explains his reaction to the practice of 20 restore it to its former state. Katz, however, does not provide us with as clear a picture of what he means by restoration, beyond a very general description of the premise that lies behind restoration: that a degraded ecosystem can be restored to some level of functioning. It seems safe to assume, however, that it is likely that Katz's view of the practice is limited to corporate restoration scenarios similar to the one which Elliot describes. Katz has published at least one other article on the same theme, and has not changed his position on the moral value of the practice of restoration over the years. In addition to the works of Elliot and Katz, there are only a few others which comprise the philosophical body of literature on the subject of restoration. Those which I have encountered seem to have in common with Elliot and Katz a highly theoretical argument. In 1995, Alastair Gunn published his article entitled, "The Restoration of Species and Natural Environments." In this article, Gunn argues that although restoration poses formidable technical difficulties, it is not impossible to restore the value of an ecosystem. He is addressing directly the claims of Elliot that the restoration of value is impossible. Thus, in contrast to Katz, he argues that we do indeed have a moral responsibility to restore degraded ecosystems: Elliot is right to insist that there is a value difference between human and non-human caused environmental change. Nevertheless, the difference lies in the fact that we are morally responsible for what we produce, not in an inherent and necessary qualitative difference between environments which have been influenced by humans and environments which have not (Gunn 308). Thus, Gunn chooses to speak directly to what has been written before in the literature, and attempts to rebut Elliot and Katz at the theoretical level. In the Spring of 1993, Mark Co well had published "Ecological Restoration and Environmental Ethics." We find again that in this article a theoretical, as opposed to normative, argument is presented. A detailed argument for the redefinition of "restoration" is given, in the hopes that it will correct for what he perceives to be philosophical misunderstandings in the conceptualization of restoration by practitioners. Ultimately, his project is to show that restoration ecological restoration, which can be described as a holistic approach to environmental problems. 21 is a practice which may "aid in the clarification and development of a system of environmental ethics that recognizes human relationships with the environment as potentially symbiotic and positive" (Cowell 19). In 1995, Donald Scherer published "Evolution, Human Living, and the Practice of Ecological Restoration", which is an attempt to show that the value of ecological restoration is "ambivalent" (359) against the background of "reiterative prisoner's dilemmas", which are used to show that the moral imperative should be to lessen tolerance of human practices which degrade ecosystems. Basically, then, his argument rests on the premise that restoration is a practice which can be justified in the name of enlightened self-interest, despite the monumental barriers to achieving a true restoration in many cases. He concludes that restoration is, "if not a hoax of easy optimism and self-deception, a monumental expression of faith" (Scherer 379). Thus it is not until 1996 that we start to see reflected in the philosophical literature a call for the expansion of the context in which we view restoration. In 1996, Michael Vincent McGinnis published an article in Inquiry, the journal where Elliot first published his pivotal article, in which he argues from a Deep Ecology standpoint for a recognition of the potential of restoration to help effect the paradigm shift in human relations with the natural world. His argument claims that Elliot and Katz were mistaken, and that "in deep ecological restoration we can develop a realization that our community is part of the self-producing character of all life" (McGinnis 203). That same year, Andrew Light and Eric Higgs published in Environmental Ethics their article entitled "The Politics of Ecological Restoration." In this article they argue that environmental ethics has focused too closely upon the question of the value of restored landscapes. They shift the philosophical focus to the social and political context in which restoration is practiced, and argue that the politics of restoration can be criticized based on the politics in restoration (Light and Higgs227). This article is firmly grounded in the normative realm of discourse. Thus, it is unique in the philosophical literature. 22 Light and Higgs have also published widely in the non-philosophical literature on restoration. Higgs's article "What is Good Ecological Restoration" explores the potential of restoration to achieve "ecological fidelity and harmonious relationships with nature" (1996, 1). Light's article, "Hegemony and Democracy", explores the democratic potential of restoration, and claims that it is this potential which distinguishes good restorations from those that appropriate natural images for capital gain. He has published this article in Restoration and Management Notes, one of the two main restoration journals. Covering a broad range of topics, some more technical than others, this journal, owned by the University of Wisconsin Arboretum, includes articles on the ethics of ecological restoration. Most of the non-philosophical literature I reviewed for this thesis came from this journal, as its focus is less technical than that of Restoration Ecology, a journal owned by the SER and published by Blackwell Science. I found most helpful several editorials by William R. Jordan, one of which pertains almost exactly to the final chapter of this thesis. In his editorial, "The Ghosts in the Forest", Jordan argues against the belief that the restored ecosystem is of lesser value than the original. Recall that this was Elliot's main argument, based on the premise that a restored ecosystem is the equivalent to an art forgery. Jordan argues that what is deeply relevant to the work of restorationists is the idea that "the realness, the ontologic value of nature, is seen not as given, and certainly not as compromised by human influence, but as actually dependent on deliberate human acts" (Jordan 4). This belief is reflected in much of the non-philosophical literature of restoration. Another article by Higgs suggests that restoration has the potential to help us escape from consumerism and the commodification of nature, but only if we regard it as "a creative act as well as an environmental technology" (Higgs 1991, 97). The theme of commodified nature also runs through the restoration literature. Jonathan Perry writes about what happens when corporations undertake "green" practices like restoration 23 in a bid to improve their corporate images. He argues that corporate restorations should really be considered landscaping projects, rather than true restorations, because of the process by which the landscape is "authored" (Perry 146). In addition, Albert Borgmann pays close attention to the processes that exist in our society by which nature becomes commodified. He believes restoration to be a counter force capable of pointing out the difference between what is real and what is hyperreal (Borgmann 36). Karen Holland also believes restoration to be a healthy alternative to consumerist culture, arguing that restoration can provide inspiration rituals that are better alternatives to the rituals of shopping mall culture (Holland 122). Through restoration rituals she believes that communities can build spirit and "reaffirm personal vows" (Holland 121). This, with a couple of exceptions, is an overview of the non-philosophical literature which I have looked at. The first exception is an interesting article, more for where it is to be found than for what it says. In Sierra magazine there is an article entitled "A Time to Mend" by Sarah Pollock which is an overview of the restoration movement in the United States. It is interesting because it shows that restoration is a growing movement which environmental philosophers ought to be more interested in, if for no other reason than its ubiquity in North America. The second exception is the Musqueam Creek Restoration Plan by Nick Page. This is a plan for the restoration of the watershed from which I build a case study. This was a helpful text in that it gave a detailed history of the watershed, and outlined some of the technical issues which are important in the case. And finally, I would recommend a visit to the SER website for a wealth of information, and leads to interesting publications in the field of restoration ecology10. 1 0The SER website can be found at the following URL: http://nabalu.flas.ufl. edu/ser/About SER.html 24 The research into the restoration project itself involved structured personal interviews with the key members of the project. For a sample set of interview questions, please see Appendix 1. In order to carry this research out in an ethically sound manner, an Ethics Review was carried out and submitted for approval to the Ethics Committee at the University of British Columbia. A copy of the consent form used to obtain permission to interview can also be found in Appendix 2. Please note that for the sake of anonymity real names of participants have not been used. I would also like to extend my deepest gratitude to the participants for their willing cooperation, without whom there would be no case study. With no further ado, then, let me introduce the Musqueam Watershed Restoration Project. 25 Chapter 2 — Introducing the Musqueam Watershed Project A map produced • by the federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans, "Lost Streams of the Lower Fraser River," has a powerful effect upon the viewer. Vancouver is covered in squiggly red lines showing the former location of once-thriving streams that now exist only as drainage ditches and sewers or that have disappeared entirely as ravines were filled in, smoothing out the city's topography ... But all is not lost. A growing movement of urban environmentalists is also seeing red in the way this region's cities have evolved and are still being planned. A new generation of activists and neighborhood residents are speaking up on behalf of the remaining streams and their inhabitants. And many more are putting their hands and their spare time where their hearts are: working to protect and restore long-buried streams and wetlands (Kirkby 1997). In his article on the restoration of Tatlow Creek, Gareth Kirkby describes a growing phenomenon that is not peculiar to Vancouver's Kitsalano district, to British Columbia, nor even to the Pacific Northwest. Al l over North America, citizens are joining ranks with municipal and federal governmental authorities, universities, corporations and NGOs to restore everything from urban streams to prairie savannah. These restoration projects are initiated by historical societies, concerned individuals,11 government agencies, First Nations, the private sector, and local conservancies. The reasons for initiating restoration projects vary in as many ways as the projects' initiators vary from one another. Most, but not all, corporate restorations take place because of governmental policies which have as a guiding principle a "no net loss of habitat" (Department of Fisheries and Oceans 1986, 12) in land development, whereas individuals may initiate restoration projects out of concern for the historical continuity of their communities12, and 1 1 For example, Steve Packard began the restoration of a suburban site not far from Chicago and he and his project became the subject of William Stevens' book Miracle Under the Oaks New York: Pocket Books, 1995. 1 2The term restoration itself implies that the process itself involves the returning to some thing that has been lost, or hidden. Thus, the replication of a historical state of ecosystemic functioning, or even the returning to an aesthetic state is implied by the practice. As was mentioned before, there is much debate over what the term restoration entails, but often it is most 26 still others may restore out of concern for threatened or endangered organisms. Of course there is often more than one reason for restoring an ecosystem and such is the case with the restoration project that will be the subject of this particular example of a restoration project. Before we explore the reasons for restoring the Musqueam Watershed, however, it is important to know more about the project. History of the Musqueam Watershed The head waters of Musqueam and Cutthroat Creeks are located near the Sassamat Reservoir which is located in the Pacific Spirit Park. They flow through this park, and pass under a culvert at South West Marine Drive. Musqueam Creek then flows through Musqueam Park, the Musqueam Indian Reserve and finally through the Musqueam Golf Course, to join the Fraser River via an artificially created slough. Cutthroat Creek flows through the Shaughnessy Golf Course, then flows to the housing area, under Salish Drive and then it joins Musqueam Creek in Musqueam Park, just before entering the Reserve. Cutthroat Creek was diverted from its original course in the 1960s during the construction of the golf course so that it now flows into Musqueam Creek rather than over the embankment (Tera Environmental Consultants as cited by Page 1993, 6). On their way to join the Fraser River, the Creeks flow through many different jurisdictions: the Greater Vancouver Regional District Parks Department, City of Vancouver Parks Board, and the Musqueam Indian Band being the main ones. This has meant that the Creeks have been somewhat better protected than other urban waterways. In no way, however, does this mean that Musqueam and Cutthroat Creeks have not suffered drastically the effects of urbanization. closely associated with the restoration of the landscape so that is has a historical continuity with what it looked like, or functioned like in the past. 27 Part of the reason for selecting the restoration of the Musqueam Watershed for study is that the project has brought together a diverse group of agencies and individuals who together represent a broad range of stakeholder interests. One of the groups represented on the restoration project's committee is the Musqueam Indian Band. The Musqueam watershed takes its name from the Musqueam Indian Band, who are one of the Coast Salish Tribes which have lived in the area for over 3,000 years. According to Thomas Dutton, until fairly recently, there has been an abundance of fish life within Musqueam and Cutthroat Creeks: No one would ever dream that during the salmon run, English Bay would be so full of fish that one could figuratively almost cross to the south shore by stepping from fish to fish, and still harder to believe that I caught a salmon at the corner of Maple Street and Third Avenue (Page 1993, 2). The Musqueam people have long valued the salmon populations that inhabited the streams and rivers that were adjacent to their residential areas. The salmon fishery has been an essential facet of the Musqueam way of life for centuries. The Musqueam way of life altered drastically with European settlement and urbanization of the area we now know as Vancouver. The Musqueam lost much of their land, and had many of their rights taken away. Most importantly, their rights to the fisheries were curtailed significantly, as were their rights to profit by the fisheries. It was not until very recently that they were once again granted rights which meant that they could once again use the fishery resource in a manner which reflected their past usage of this resource. The court case, Sparrow v. The Queen which took place in 1990, was the first case in which the Supreme Court of Canada dealt with section 35 of the Constitution Act, 1982 which recognizes and affirms "the existing aboriginal and treaty rights of the aboriginal peoples of Canada" (Henderson's Virtual Law Office). During the course of this important trial, an anthropologist named Dr. Suttles described the importance of the salmon fishery to the Musqueam people: 28 The Salmon was not only an important source of food but played an important part in the system of beliefs of the Salish people, and in their ceremonies. The salmon were held to be a race of beings that had, in "myth times", established a bond with human beings requiring the salmon to come each year to give their bodies to the humans who, in turn, treated them with respect shown by performance of the proper ritual. Towards the salmon, as toward other creatures, there was an attitude of caution and respect which resulted in effective conservation of the various species (Henderson's Virtual Law Office 11). The abundance of the salmon in those days is credited for giving the Musqueam people enough surplus food to allow them to develop their complex culture (Page 1993, 3). In 1992 the Musqueam people finally won back the right to sell their fish legally. As Page says, "The future of the Band's control over a resource they historically depend upon is finally improving"(1993, 4). Unfortunately, there is not much of a fishery left for the Musqueam to have control over. The detrimental effects of environmental degradation due to the process of urbanization have led to drastic changes in the hydrology of the watershed and to the quality of aquatic and riparian habitat within the watershed. Musqueam and Cutthroat Creeks have been luckier than most of the original streams in Vancouver, however, making this watershed significant in that it is the only urban creek in Vancouver in which wild salmon stocks can still be found. The watershed's special location within the urban center of Vancouver has afforded it a rather protected environment: where other urban streams and creeks have been culverted, drastically re-routed, buried underground or filled in to level the topography of the city, or to make way for roads and other developments, Musqueam and Cutthroat Creeks have sustained relatively little physical disturbance. A large portion of the watershed has been developed: housing and hard surfaces prevent the critical absorption of rainwater that replenishes ground water sources. This accounts for a substantial change to the hydrology of the watershed. There are also several culverts which inhibit the passage of fish. For this reason, most of the Musqueam Creek system is not used by anadromous salmonids (that is, salmon that ascend rivers from the sea to spawn), and the lower section of Musqueam Creek below Marine Drive is used by coho and chum salmon as well as both resident and anadromous cutthroat trout. Above Marine Drive only resident cutthroat trout 29 are found (Page 1993, 8). This cutthroat trout population is a remnant of the original population that was isolated when Marine Drive was built (Northcote and Hartman 409-442). Local residents have also contributed to a decline in the fish population. According to Page, twenty-five years ago a gill net was put up across the mouth of the slough into which Musqueam creek drains with the intent to intercept returning adults: "This was done by a local resident over a period of several years and this destroyed a large portion of the salmon run" (Page 1993, 9). Local residents draining swimming pools into the Creek have also had a devastating effect on the fish populations: one year a fish kill of 20,000 occurred from such action (Page 1993, 9). As recently as September 1997 there was yet another fish kill as a result of someone dumping an unknown pollutant (presumed to be pesticide) into what one Musqueam Indian Band fisheries officer has come to call "the culvert from Hell "(Participant 3 October 1997). The point of entry was the culvert where Cutthroat Creek crosses Salish Drive: "In typical fashion consistent with every other fish kill in Musqueam someone dumped something down a storm drain in concentrated form and it mixed into the stream" (Participant 3 Oct 4, 1997). Fish died directly because of the pollutant. The salmon stocks are not the only organisms in this watershed to have been affected by urbanization. The vegetation of the watershed has also changed over time: Originally the area was heavily forested with Douglas-fir, Western Hemlock and Western Red Cedar. Use of the forest by the Musqueam people was minimal and major disturbances were confined to areas where cedar trees could be cut and moved to the water. Since settlement of the area began in the 1860's all of the forested area has been logged at least once. Currently forest cover still exists on approximately 64% of the watershed area. The majority of this area is dominated by second-growth Douglas-fir, Red Cedar, Western Hemlock, Big-leafed Maple and Red Alder (Page 1993, 9). Time is running out for the salmon of Musqueam Creek: January 1997's salmon run saw only six coho and six chum salmon return to spawn (Kirkby 16). Not only do these salmon have a cultural and historical value to many local people, including and especially, the Musqueam Indian Band, but they also play a key role in keeping the watershed nutrient rich. Participant 6, an aquatic entomologist, local resident and member of the Musqueam Creek Committee explains: 30 We tend to have very low nutrient streams [in Vancouver] because of the constant rain, the constant flushing itself out. So the fish moving upstream are important because they die after they spawn and a number of studies have shown that that is a very important source of limiting nutrients to the streams. In obvious ways, then they feed bears, they feed eagles, they feed humans but they also provide food for the stream-side vegetation, and for the insects which also provide food for [the fish's] own juveniles. So there is a circularity there, where the fish moving upstream are providing nutrients for their own young to feed on before they return to the ocean (Participant 6). Salmon have not only had an integral role to play within the ecology of the ecosystem itself, but they have also played an integral role in the history and culture of British Columbia. The Native and non-Native economy of British Columbia has long been based on the fishing and forestry industries, and preserving and maintaining the health of these industries is important historically as well as economically. That is why the Sparrow v. The Queen ruling was so significant. On May 31, 1990, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that Aboriginal communities have a right to fish for food, social and ceremonial purposes. The federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans [DFO] has since acquired the constitutional responsibility to ensure that Native groups "are allowed to exercise first claim on the resource, after conservation needs are met but before the claims of other users" (Fisheries and Oceans Canada). In the same ruling, it was provided for that the DFO must consult with Aboriginal people before allocating resources that might affect Aboriginal rights. This is significant in that since this ruling, the Musqueam are now a powerful jurisdiction within the watershed. History of the Musqueam Creek Committee The restoration of Musqueam and Cutthroat Creeks began in the Fall of 1991 with a small incubation box project that was the result of a joint initiative between the Musqueam Indian Band Fisheries and the DFO's Salmonid Enhancement Project. The incubation box hatched 35,000 to 56,000 chum salmon eggs annually and guardians of the Musqueam Band monitored these eggs on a daily basis. When community advisor for the DFO, Participant 1, came on board in 1991, there was already a small group gathering to discuss problems on the Creeks, in an attempt to 31 expand their efforts beyond the relatively unsuccessful incubation box project. Their aim was to do a more comprehensive job of habitat enhancement, as the incubation box project would not be a success until the causal factors of habitat degradation were redressed. In 1990, Fausch had performed a comprehensive assessment of the watershed and indicated that several changes had to be made to the watershed to return it to a Salmonid-friendly, state with a more sustainable habitat (qtd. in Page 1993, 6). On the basis of this report, the small group of individuals decided that their first project should address the critical summer low flow periods that resulted from radical changes in the hydrology of the watershed due to urbanization. The University of British Columbia, the DFO and the Greater Vancouver Regional District Parks Department (GVRD) each contributed a sum of one thousand dollars respectively to hire a geotechnical consultant to review possible solutions to the problem of augmenting the summer flow. There were three options presented: 1) purchasing of water from the G V R D from the Sassamat Reservoir, or persuading them to release water into Musqueam Creek, which originates just a few metres from the Reservoir; (2) creating a storage lake to collect rain water and then slowly releasing it over the low flow periods and (3) digging a ground-water well. It was decided that the latter was the most desirable option. It was at this point that Participant 1 was brought in on the project as the Community Advisor representing the DFO. Shortly thereafter, the Musqueam Creek Committee (MCC) was formed, and the City of Vancouver Vancouver Parks Board, Ministry of the Environment, U B C Geography, Langara College, Shaughnessy Golf Course all acquired representation on the M C C in addition to the original parties. In addition to these agencies there are several members of the local community who are on the M C C . The M C C has continued to meet regularly, and their presence in the community has grown considerably. A society has also been formed by the Musqueam Indian Band Fisheries which functions primarily as the financial arm of the M C C . It is called the Musqueam Enhancement of Salmonid Habitat Society (M.E.S.H.) and it raises funds for the various initiatives of the M C C ; it is likely more successful than the M C C at doing so, because it is a registered charity and consequently provides a tax benefit for those who donate to the Society. The M C C and M.E.S.H. 32 work together to achieve their goals, which have expanded greatly since the early days of 1990. What follows is a brief description of the MCC's current projects drawn from their Spring 1997 Newsletter: The Flow Augmentation project proceeded and has now worked over a period of several years to develop a ground-water well to augment low summer flows. The well is located within the Pacific Spirit Regional Park, which is within the GVRD's jurisdiction. The pump that is required to make the well functional, costing over forty thousand dollars, was to be installed in the Spring of 1997. The Biofiltration Wetland is a proposal to construct a wetland within the watershed. This wetland is not a restoration of a former wetland, but it is a solution to the problem of storm water contaminants impacting on Musqueam Creek. The wetland uses plants to remove nutrients, sediment, metals and other pollutants (Musqueam Creek Committee). If successful, it is hoped that this method of dealing with storm water can be used elsewhere in the watershed. The Musqueam Watershed Initiative began in the Spring of 1997 and will last for two years. Funding for this project came from the Vancouver Foundation, and a portion of this money will go towards the hiring of a Project Co-ordinator. The project will "designate the Musqueam watershed as a model for the management of urban watersheds in coastal B.C. ; undertake an inventory of resource values; and implement a public education and awareness project" (Musqueam Creek Committee 1). The role of the Project Co-ordinator will be to supervise a biophysical inventory of the Musqueam Watershed and to supervise the designation of the Musqueam watershed as a model for urban watershed management. As well, the Project Co-ordinator will work to promote public involvement and to develop communication strategies to involve and inform local residents and watershed users in the protection and restoration of the watershed. Finally, the Project Co-ordinator will prepare a financial report which should provide direction for future work in the watershed and presents the methods and results of the project. Flow and Water Quality Monitoring is an ongoing, volunteer based project to monitor water quality in an attempt to assess the impact of urban development on water quality and the hydrology of the watershed. U B C Geography is co-ordinating the flow monitoring and the M C C and Langara College are working on water sampling. Community Involvement is promoted by the M C C at community events. Volunteers from the M C C attend the GVRD's Night Quest in Pacific Spirit Regional Park to promote stream stewardship. There is also an annual open house held on B.C. Rivers Day in September at which there are information displays, stream walks and, ironically, a salmon barbecue! What began as a tiny group of individuals from various agencies and the local community has now grown into a well established organization with a comprehensive plan for the restoration of a degraded watershed. Curiously, the M C C itself has a rather vague mission statement, as they have decided to focus their attention on specific problems as they arise rather than developing 33 comprehensive goals and guidelines for their work. Participant 1, as chair of the M C C believes that setting a better thought out and more clearly defined mandate is an important exercise (Participant 1). What follows is the temporary mandate that was agreed upon democratically several years ago, shortly after the project's inception: Musqueam Watershed Committee Mission Statement (circa 1991) The purposes of the Musqueam Watershed Committee are: • To Protect and enhance the habitat and natural biotic diversity of the watershed. • To engage in education and information collection and dissemination to increase public awareness. • To improve the water quality of the creeks within the watershed. • To encourage responsible use and respect for the natural resources in the watershed by all people, including residents, businesses and visitors. • To carry out the purposes of the committee in a democratic and open manner to foster community participation and support. M.E.S.H. also has its own purposes and objectives which are more comprehensive that those of the M C C : Musqueam Enhancement of Salmonid Habitat Society (M.E.S.H.) Purposes and Objectives: • To protect and enhance the habitat and natural biotic diversity of the Fraser River Watershed • To form a body of persons to provide for, on a volunteer or paid basis, a source of funds and resources to enhance fish habitat in the Fraser River • To raise funds for the establishment, maintenance, and operation of equipment needed during enhancement projects • Develop an ongoing monitoring program to oversee activities that impact aquatic life and provide a reporting system upon such activities • Train and educate the user groups of the river in pollution prevention • To work closely with law enforcement agencies to report any illegal activities, develop and implement a river-watch program 34 To have the various user groups of the river and adjacent waters speak with a unified voice, so that issues can be raised with the various levels of the government who have jurisdiction over river activities To ensure there is an integrated approach to the management of the various user groups of the river and adjacent waters Upon dissolution of the society, its property and assets remaining shall be donated to a non-profit Canadian organization, which is also a registered Charitable organization as defined in the Income Tax Act (Canada), which organization has similar purposes and objectives to the Society. This dissolution clause is unalterable in accordance with the Society Act The purpose of the Society shall be carried out without purpose of gain for its members, and any profits or other accretions to the Society shall be used for promoting its purpose. This paragraph is unalterable in accordance with the Society Act 1. Community 2. M.E.S.E. 2b. Musqueam Watershed Committee Education Facilities X Enhancement! Projects Research of Marine Environment User Groups of River Systeml Figure 2. The Organizational Structure of M.E.S.H. These two mandates are the ones directly related to the restoration project. As the M C C is comprised of a number of agencies as well as community members though, it is important to 35 include in the history of the M C C information that pertains to the interests of the individual agencies who have jurisdiction over the watershed: Excerpt from the Pacific Spirit Regional Park: Management Plan November 1991, Adopted by GVRD Board of Directors October 30,1991: 7.6 Streams — Musqueam and Cutthroat Creeks A number of small streams flow through Pacific Spirit Regional Park. They provide environmental diversity and visual interest. Two of these streams, Musqueam Creek and Cutthroat Creek, are important fish habitat. Musqueam Creek flows from the Greater Vancouver Water's District's (GVRD) Sassamat Reservoir south through the Park. The creek is culverted under S.W. Marine Drive, flows through Vancouver's Musqueam Park and through the Musqueam Indian Reserve. It empties into the Fraser River North Arm. The section below S.W. Marine Drive is one of the last salmon-bearing streams in the City of Vancouver and contains important spawning and rearing habitat. Similar habitat exists above the S.W. Marine Drive culvert, but the culvert is a barrier to sea-run fish. The Federal Salmon Enhancement Program (SEP) is working with the Musqueam Indian Band and a number of schools in the area to enhance fish habitat and increase fish returns to Musqueam Creek. Both Musqueam and Cutthroat Creeks contain resident Cutthroat trout (Oncorhynchus clarki) in pools upstream of S.W. Marine Drive. Sections of these streams often dry up in summer. The pools become warm and stagnant, low in oxygen and low in food for the resident fish. Yet the Cutthroat trout manage to survive in this harsh environment (Dr. Tom Northcote, U B C , personal communications 1989). The U B C Resource Management Department has studied fish in these two streams over a number of years. G V R D Parks is working with U B C and other agencies to try to enhance the fish habitat in both streams. Thus streams are placed in the Environmental Enhancement Zone to protect and enhance them as important natural features of the Park. To further protect the streams, the stream corridors are placed in the Buffer Zone. Riding mountain bikes in the sensitive stream areas has caused damage in the form of eroding stream banks and silting stream beds. This must be stopped. To a far lesser degree, dogs playing in the streams have also caused damage to the fish habitat. Al l Park users will be encouraged to stay on designated trails. This is especially important when people are crossing streams or in the vicinity of the fish-bearing streams. With stream corridors in the Buffer Zone, a protective strip of 36 forest will buffer the streams from the recreational use permitted in the Forest Recreation Zone, which contains the majority of recreation trails. Action: • Work with Federal and Provincial fisheries agencies, U B C Resource management, and the Musqueam Indian Band in an effort to protect, restore and enhance the fish habitat in the Musqueam and Cutthroat Creeks systems. • Launch a user awareness program through signage, pamphlets, interpretative programs, etc., promoting recreation in harmony with the environment, and including special emphasis on respecting the streams and fish habitat. The evidence that this management plan has been put into action is hard to miss as one walks in Pacific Spirit Regional Park. One will notice prominently displayed yellow and green signs: Musqueam and Cutthroat Creeks Water Flow Augmentation Project G V R D Parks has approved the drilling of a well by the Musqueam Creek Committee to test for possible addition to Musqueam and Cutthroat Creeks during their summer low flow period. If a suitable water supply can be found, the water will be pumped up and added to each creek. Scientists believe that chances for the long term survival of fish and other wildlife will be enhanced by augmenting summer water flows to pre-development level. The drilling is being funded by the Pacific Salmon Foundation and the Department of Fisheries and Oceans and Musqueam Fisheries Department. For more information contact the Musqueam Creek Committee... Another strategically placed sign reads: MUSQUEAM CREEK This tiny creek is home to an endangered strain of Cutthroat trout. Cyclists and dogs cutting through the channel are damaging creek life and drainage. PROTECT FISH HABITAT The most powerful agency represented on the M C C is the federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO). Indeed, the chair of the M C C is 37 the Community Advisor hired by the DFO to work with community groups like the M C C to help with waterway restoration efforts. This is because of an explicit policy goal under the DFO's Policy for the Management of Fish Habitat: 4.6 Sixth Strategy Cooperative Action Encourage and support involvement by government agencies, public interest groups and the private sector to conserve, restore and develop fish habitats. Interpretation: 1. Community involvement in habitat-related activities will be encouraged so as to instill positive attitudes and local pride in the fisheries resource and its habitat, and to raise the level of understanding about the complex relationship between the resource and its supporting habitats. Employment and economic benefits can also be realized by involving local communities in habitat-related work 4.7 Seventh Strategy Habitat Improvement Initiate projects and provide advice to other interested groups to restore and develop fish habitats, in support of the net gain objective .... 3. Where it manages the fisheries directly, the Department will provide advice and guidance to community and conservation groups that wish to undertake habitat restoration and development projects; financial support also may be provided, depending on the availability of public funds for this purpose (Department of Fisheries and Oceans). Although the DFO has many policies that affect urban watersheds, and which affect First Nations Fisheries, they also have produced a guide to establishing community stewardship. The M C C seems to be modeled to some degree by this guide. What follows is an excerpt from the guide in which the role of the community in stewardship is explained. Excerpt from: Community Stewardship: a guide to establishing vour own group (Canadian Wildlife Service et al.) Communities need to get involved in stewardship because: 38 • Past experience has shown that the " top down" approach just isn't effective enough. • There isn't enough money for government to do it all. For example, agencies are having to cut back the numbers of enforcement officers who work to prevent poaching of fish and wildlife. • Small groups can be more adaptive and innovative in stewardship than large agencies. • Only communities can say what their needs and priorities are. Decisions made by governments tens or hundreds of kilometers from the community often do not reflect the needs of the community. • The environment benefits from community-level stewardship as a result of: • direct investment of knowledge, energy and skills of people at the local level leading to immediate and longer term improvements to environmental health; • increased awareness of ecosystem needs; and • the ethic of responsible citizenship that is established and passed on to future generations. • Individuals benefit from their work as stewards. People involved in stewardship: • learn about their natural surroundings, • meet people and get to know the values and interests of their neighbours, • acquire new skills, • get the pride and satisfaction of contributing to the well-being of their community, • have fun, and • improve their health - both body and spirit. • Communities benefit from stewardship activities by: • learning from experience how to help themselves; • practicing co-operative approaches to decision-making which can extend to other aspects of community life, such as managing growth or planning for sustainability; • drawing in marginalized or disadvantaged people such as the unemployed; and • finding opportunities to bridge cultural differences and build understanding between First Nations peoples and non-aboriginal peoples. In the same publication, there is a section on consensus decision making: Consensus Decision-making 39 If your group has a formal structure, its ways of working together might be described in "terms of reference" or a constitution. If you don't have these formalities, you should at least agree on some ground rules, setting out procedures for meetings and decision-making. Most stewardship groups are using consensus decision-making rather than the old "Robert's Rules" or parliamentary-type procedures. Essentially, consensus requires that all participants agree to a decision before it is finalized. Individuals might disagree with smaller aspects of the decision but all participants feel that they can live with it on the whole. The advantages of consensus are: • to treats all members of the group equally, making it difficult for a few to dominate; • it gets away from "winners and losers" and meets a broader range of interests; • it increases the collective understanding of issues and of alternative strategies for dealing with them; • it motivates people to search for innovative solutions in order to reach closure; and • it results in decisions that are more credible and likely to have lasting effectiveness. Also included in this publication is a chapter on setting goals which will be relevant to the next chapter in which the creation of the MCC's mandate is discussed. Here is an excerpt from this chapter: Distinguish between goals that are "personal" and goals that are "public." In many cases it is difficult to separate personal and public gains. For example, a group of residents working to clean-up a stream running through a ravine at the back of their property have a personal interest in the outcome. But they are also providing a service for themselves as members of the general public and for others who may walk the paths alongside the creek. There is nothing "wrong" with stewardship projects having personal benefits to those involved. It is important however, to be clear about the balance between personal and public gains and be able to explain the distinctions to those who may be skeptical about you motivation. Also of relevance to this case study is the Aboriginal Fisheries Strategy designed by the DFO (Department of Fisheries and Oceans 1). Under this Strategy, the DFO guarantees Natives the right to fish for food, social and ceremonial purposes as the Supreme Court of Canada ruled in 1990. This right takes first priority after conservation. The Strategy also "aims to increase the 40 economic opportunities for Native people, and at the same time maintain stability and profitability in the commercial and recreational fisheries" (Department of Fisheries and Oceans 1). We have now looked at the major policy and mandates of the main agencies involved in the restoration of the Musqueam Watershed. Let us now turn to the individuals who represent these agencies on the M C C , and to the other dedicated individuals who sit on the Committee. Musqueam Creek Committee — Some Key Individuals For the purposes of this case study, it was necessary to select a number of individuals who have made long term and/or significant contributions to the M C C . What follows is an introduction to those members of M C C who were interviewed and a brief description of their role on the M C C and their motivations for being involved in the project. Participant 1 is the Community Advisor who works with volunteers on the DFO's Salmonid Enhancement Projects. He is a part of the Streamkeepers project which teaches a holistic approach to stream and watershed restoration and protection. The Streamkeepers project is meant for the public and there are assessment and action-modules for people to become involved in. Participant 1 joined the M C C in 1991 and is currently its Chair. As well as representing the DFO on the M C C , he has helped in the process of recruiting new members in an attempt to have the entire watershed represented. For the most part, he has been successful. He believes that there is an element in this project of "doing what is right and trying to correct past mistakes" (Participant 1). He believes that this project should instill an ethic of long-term protection in people, and he believes that restoration efforts have come a long way from ten years ago when only incubation boxes were used. Now efforts to restore waterways will take a look at the broader picture, perhaps the entire watershed and see whether the conditions are right for the restocking of creeks. He has witnessed a change in the direction of restoration thinking that leads towards sustainability. 41 Participant 2 became involved in the M C C when the need for a hydrology expert was assessed. When asked about his role in the project, he comments that he has deliberately tried not to shape the goals of the project because it is the community's project. He has tried to represent the willingness of U B C to give expertise but he believes that it is for the various people of the community to decide where the project should go. He does, from time to time try to suggest what specific things should be done, for example finding out the characteristics of the drainage area, and he does this as a scientist. Participant 3 was an aboriginal fisheries officer who was involved in enforcement and who also advises the Chief and Council of the Musqueam Indian Band on environmental issues. His role in the Musqueam Fisheries Commission was to protect the interests of the Band whether they be aboriginal rights or the interests of the Band in general. This involves protecting and restoring habitat. He was on the M C C to represent the Band's interests in the Musqueam watershed. In the past few years, his role on the Committee had become angled towards fund-raising: he found that people were less likely to make donations when there was no tax benefit, and so M.E.S.H. was formed. M.E.S.H. was actively involved in raising money for the well development that is a part of the Flow Augmentation Project of the M C C . He also believes that the restoration and protection of the Musqueam Watershed should be important in creating jobs for aboriginals under the Aboriginal Fisheries Strategy of the DFO. Participant 4 is a member of the Musqueam Indian Band, and former enforcement officer for the Band's Fisheries Department. He is active in all the habitat enhancement at the M C C level and actively involves Band members, especially school age children, in the act of restoring the habitat of the Creek. He is also interested in creating jobs for aboriginals through this project — the restoration and enhancement of fish habitat should provide work under the Aboriginal Fishery Strategy of the DFO. His current role in the Musqueam Fisheries Department is to address the 42 ecological needs of the watershed and he is on the M C C to represent the Band's cultural and historical needs, and to see that they are addressed. Participant 5 is involved in the M C C as the representative of the G V R D Parks. He is the Park planner for Pacific Spirit Park where Musqueam and Cutthroat Creeks have their head waters. He sees his role on the M C C as a part of a collaborative effort to work on the management issues that faced the two Creeks. If his work on the M C C involves policy considerations, or budget considerations, he takes the issue to the staff of the G V R D for their input. He recognizes the important educational value of the watershed, especially because the Creeks flow through the publicly accessible Pacific Spirit Park, and he also recognizes the watershed's cultural and ecological value. After conceding that his work might expose him to a somewhat unique group of people, Participant 5 believes that people are beginning to "develop keener interest in nature and nature values ... we are kind of evolving to a better relationship with nature." Participant 6 is a local resident living close to Musqueam Creek who represents no agency on the M C C . He is an environmental consultant and stream ecologist. When he moved into the community he felt it important to explore his new environment. Participant 6 became interested in the status of Musqueam and Cutthroat Creeks, and began an investigation of the Creeks' conditions and a little investigation led him to the M C C . He is now an active member of the M C C and brings not only his knowledge of biology to the project, but also actively takes part in the physical work involved in the restoration process. Participant 7 is a community member who represents no agency on the M C C . While searching for a graduation project to complete a degree in Landscape Architecture at the University of British Columbia, he came across Musqueam Creek. At first he dismissed the idea — others had already looked at the Creek — but when he discovered there was a restoration project under consideration, he reconsidered. He became involved, and now describes his role on the M C C as a "generalist", meaning he takes an interest in the entire watershed, unlike some members who 43 restrict their area of focus to their own jurisdictions. Participant 7 is currently a fisheries consultant; over the past four years, since he completed his B L A graduation project on Musqueam Creek, he has altered his view somewhat of how the restoration should proceed: "[in] Landscape Architecture, you always have to include the human side of things — but more and more I sort of exclude that ." Participant 7 grew up on Vancouver Island, in a rural area where there were many streams, and so he enjoys visiting the Creek, "just to see what is going on, out of curiosity." Participant 7 does not believe his involvement is based on sentimentality, however. Nor does he think that the fact that the Creek is home to the last wild coho salmon stock is terribly significant in terms of his motivation for being on the Committee. He is involved because it is close to where he lives, and it gives him an opportunity to be involved in something that is exciting and that has the potential to be a successful restoration. Of course, there are other members of the M C C who have volunteered their time to help with the restoration of the Musqueam Watershed. These include the local Boy Scouts, the Dunbar Community Center, the Shaughnessy Golf and Country Club and other individuals from the local community. The Ministry of the Environment's Urban Salmonid Habitat Program has also been involved in the M C C . It is the aim of the Committee to include as many users of the watershed as possible, and it seems evident that the M C C has grown from a few initial members into a well balanced committee. Indeed, as we have seen, they have attempted to include all interested stakeholders in the community and this is reflected in the mandate drawn up by the M C C . What was the reasoning behind the decision to have as many interests as possible represented on the MCC? Surely it would be easier in some ways to limit the number of participants in the project: It is plain that if there are one or two technical objectives in the project they would be more efficiently and more effectively carried out by a smaller group — say the DFO acting benevolently on behalf of a paternalistic government (Participant 2). 44 One can infer from the fact that Participant 2 identifies some objectives as "technical" that there might be other types of objectives to this project. Do restoration projects have other types of goals apart from technical objectives? The answer may lie in how the project is conceptualized by its participants — is the restoration of the Musqueam watershed an engineering project? Or is this project viewed by its participants as a more holistic project that is not merely about fixing something that is broken or degraded? Is one way of conceptualizing the project more ethical than the other? How will the conceptualization of the project be reflected in the project's mandate and operating procedures? The answers to these questions, and to the question of what role applied ethics should play in the creation of a project's mandate and the just balancing of stake-holder interests have yet to be answered. 45 Chapter 3 — Conceptualizing Restoration The way in which a restoration project is conceptualized by its participants is perhaps the most ethically relevant feature of any case study in restoration ecology. Katz believes that there are no significant differences between different forms of restoration ecology, because all forms of the practice rest upon the same philosophical assumption. This belief leads Katz to conclude that restoration projects are nothing more than technological fixes. He is right that the philosophical assumption he presumes is behind restoration is problematic, especially as it is formulated by philosophers like Paul Taylor. Katz is wrong, however, in his presumption that this crucial philosophical assumption underpins all forms of the practice of restoration ecology, and consequently he is also wrong when he concludes that restoration ecology is incapable of being more than a technological fix which results in the creation of human artefacts. Katz's failure to engage in descriptive ethics has resulted in the false claim that those who practice restoration ecology are deceived into thinking restorative acts are acts of environmental conscience and that in reality restoration is yet another manifestation of anthropocentric megalomania (Katz 1991, 90). First of all let us turn to Katz's views on what the role of philosophy should be in the analysis of restoration ecology; this view is informed by his belief that there are no significant differences between the various forms of restoration ecology. He claims that the "clear policy differences between various forms of restoration"(Katz 1991, 90) are not ethically significant: I contend that there is a single set of philosophical assumptions that serve as the foundation for the entire spectrum of restoration policies. As it will become clear, it is also my view that this set of philosophical assumptions is mistaken. (Katz 1991, 90) Katz does not differentiate then, between corporate, government run, or grassroots restoration efforts. He believes that all three types of projects are based on the same false suppositions: Policies of restoration rest on the assumption that humanity can, and should, repair the damage that human intervention has caused the natural environment ... The idea that humanity is morally responsible for reconstructing natural areas and 46 entities - species, communities, ecosystems - thus becomes a central concern of an applied environmental ethic. (Katz 1991, 90) Katz believes that restoration as some sort of measure of restitution, undertaken by humanity, is a mistaken notion for the following reasons: (1) restoration is nothing but a technological fix of the kind that gave rise to the environmental crisis in the first place and (2) "it is an expression of an anthropocentric world view in which human interests shape and redesign a comfortable natural reality" (Katz 1991, 90). Thus, according to Katz, the end result of any restoration project is an artefact created by humans to serve their own needs and interests exclusively. The issue of restitutive justice can be seen as part of the spectrum that makes up a broader notion of justice which would also include punitive justice and distributive justice. An act of restitutive justice can be seen as a compensatory act which attempts rectify an injustice created by an act which, in this context, resulted in the degradation or destruction of an ecosystem. Thus, in this context a duty to perform a restitutive act is derived from the belief that compensation can and should be made for an act of degradation or destruction13. Katz believes, however, that the focus of and applied environmental ethic should not be the question of whether or not humanity is morally responsible for restoring ecosystems, but rather it should concern itself with an evaluation of the values instantiated in a restored ecosystem: The recreated natural environment at the end result of a restoration project is nothing more than an artifact created for human use. The problem for an applied environmental ethic is the determination of the moral value of this artefact. (Katz 1991, 92) Returning to the notion of restoration as restitution for a moment, Katz objects specifically to the notion of restitutive justice that is put forth by Paul Taylor. He objects to the notion of restitution as a fundamental rule of 'duty' under what Taylor terms biocentric ethics. Despite the 1 3The concept of restitutive justice is explored more fully in the discussion which focuses on the work of Paul Taylor in Chapter 4. 47 fact Katz's dismissal of Taylor's formulation of restitutive duty as arrogant and anthropocentric is not justified, as we shall see, there are certainly other problems with Taylor's principle of Restitutive Justice which bear closer examination. Taylor describes this duty derived from the principle of restitutive justice: A duty of restitutive justice (as a corollary of the Rule of Reciprocity) arises whenever one of the other valid rules of human ethics is broken. Even if the action was required by a more stringent duty, a human person has been unjustly treated and therefore some compensation is due her or him. That the action was morally justified, all things considered, does not license our overlooking the fact that someone has been wronged. Hence the propriety of demanding restitution ... So in our present concerns, even if the destruction of a biotic community is entailed by a duty of human ethics that overrides the rules of environmental ethics, an act of restitutive justice is called for in recognition of the inherent worth of what has been destroyed (Taylor 189). Taylor believes that it necessarily follows from the human recognition of the inherent worth of all living things that if organisms, for whatever reason, are not treated in a way that respects their interests, then reparation must be made either to the individual organism, or to its broader community. In cases where there is a total destruction of, say, an ecosystem, Taylor states that reparation cannot be made to the community: No reparation for damages can possibly be given to the community itself, which exists no more. As is true of a single organism that has been killed, the impossibility of repairing the damage does not get rid of the requirement to make some kind of compensation [to the community] for having destroyed something of inherent worth (Taylor 190). Indeed, it is difficult to see how we could make sense of this notion that reparation can be made to an individual/community that has ceased to exist. As Taylor correctly points out, this notion is absurd. Symbolic gestures that acknowledge harm done are certainly possible, but actual reparation is not possible. Restoration projects are often attempts to restore ecosystems 48 that have ceased to exist.14 Thus, even i f the practitioners of restoration ecology were motivated by a sense of moral duty to restore, they would not make reparation for the wrongdoing of whomever or whatever was responsible for the ecosystem's destruction; rather they would only compensate for the wrongdoing, according to Taylor. Now the distinction between reparation and compensation is an important one to make, because for Taylor, implicit in the act of restoring a hitherto non-existent ecosystem is the recognition that no matter how successful the restoration is, there remains a sense of loss over the destruction or degradation of the original ecosystem and its constituent individuals which possessed inherent worth. Thus, Katz's notion that people who "recreate" ecosystems through restoration believe that they can make reparation for harm done is incorrect under Taylor's biocentric view. We can see then that at least on this basis there might be a case for distinguishing between morally different types of restoration projects. If we were to subscribe to Taylor's biocentric ethic, we would want to distinguish morally between restoration cases that can be considered to be acts of reparation, and those which are merely compensatory: that is to distinguish between acts of restoration that are radical recreations of destroyed ecosystems, and those which are less radical rehabilitations of damaged ecosystems. Even though Taylor's theory provides us with a way of distinguishing between different types of restoration projects, as I wish to do 1 5, his theory of retributive justice is somewhat perplexing. In cases where restoration is not a "recreation" but rather a "rehabilitation", Taylor would say that reparation for a moral wrong under the principle of restitutive justice is possible and is even a duty: 1 4The restoration project described in Stevens' book Miracle Under the Oaks is a description of the restoration of prairie savannah near Chicago, II, that could no longer have been considered a prairie ecosystem. 15There are morally insignificant differences between types of restoration projects. Although Taylor provides us with one way to make a moral distinction between restoration that is reparation and restoration that is compensation, we will see that ultimately this is insignificant. The distinction that I will make in the following chapter between types of restoration projects is based upon different criteria altogether. 49 Any agent which has caused an evil to some natural entity that is a proper moral subject owes a duty to bring about a countervailing good, either to the moral subject in question or to some other moral subject. The perpetration of a harm calls for the producing of a benefit. The greater the harm, the larger the benefit needed to fulfil the moral obligation" (Taylor 191). Intuitively, this account of moral duty has a lot of appeal. It has the sort of intuitive appeal of the biblical "eye for an eye" sense of retributive justice. Taylor would claim that the agent responsible for clear-cutting a stand of old growth trees should be the one to provide the compensation. This seems relatively unproblematic, but he does no stop there: he claims something much stronger and, indeed, untenable: It is worth adding here that all of us who live in modern industrialized societies owe a duty of restitutive justice to the natural world and its wild inhabitants. We have all benefitted in countless ways from large-scale technology and advanced modes of economic production. As consumers we not only accept the benefits of industrialization willingly, but spend much of our lives trying to increase those benefits for ourselves and those we love ... None of us can evade the responsibility that comes with our high standard of living; we all take advantage of the amenities of civilized life in pursuing our individual values and interests. Our well-being is constantly being furthered at the expense of the good of the Earth's non-human inhabitants. Thus we should all share in the cost of preserving and restoring some areas of wild nature for the sake of the plant and animal communities that live there. Only then can we claim to have genuine respect for nature (Taylor 191). The problem with applying this kind of principle to environmental ethics is the problem of culpability and there are a number of reasons to find fault with this line of reasoning. What is morally interesting here is not that we live at the expense of other organisms, for many other species manipulate the natural world to further their own ends, and live at the expense of other organisms. It is important that we note that there are other organisms which can cause destruction to ecosystems, too. For example, star fish plagues destroy or degrade entire coral reef ecosystems. They don't do it very often, but when they do, the destruction is complete. Thus we are not necessarily unique in our ability to destroy entire ecosystems. It is not that we survive at the expense of other organisms that shows them disrespect. If we do have a duty derived from the principle of restitutive justice, it is derived from the fact that the scale upon which we profit at 50 the expense of other organisms and the rate at which we do so is disproportionate to the ability of those organisms exploited to recover from our impact: it is unsustainable profiting. What is unique about humans is their ability to cause degradation on a large scale, and also the frequency with which we do it. The consequences of this enormous human impact is the (sometimes permanent) destruction of the ability to recover in many organisms and ecosystems and this is why we owe reparation or compensation. Another reason to find fault with Taylor's ascription of culpability is that we are not all equally guilty of harm and we do not therefore owe this duty of restitutive justice to the natural world merely because, as a society, we have benefitted from large-scale technology and other natural resource dependent industry. Taylor fails to distinguish between those who have a strong duty and those who have a weaker duty: surely there is a moral difference of degree between the duty owed by the person who knowingly pollutes a stream with toxic chemical by-products of the pulp and paper industry and the duty owed by those people who buy the paper product at their local stationary shop. Holding all consumers in a capitalistic society morally responsible for causing environmental degradation is paramount to saying that polluters who are just "responding to a demand", whose fulfilment "necessitates" environmental destruction, are no more responsible for the environmental degradation than the average consumer: it weakens the duty owed by the polluter. Although not a perfect analogy, Taylor's reasoning is reminiscent of the famous Nazi war criminal's excuse, "I was just following orders." We want to blame the Nazi for atrocities perpetrated against other humans in the Second World War, and it would not be just to say that an apathetic, average German citizen was equally responsible for the atrocities that went on. Perhaps through their apathy they do share in the blame, but certainly they are guilty of far less. Just as we hold the Nazi more responsible than the apathetic German, so we should hold the 51 polluter more responsible than the average consumer. The industrialist has a stronger duty not to pollute than the consumer does to prevent him from polluting. Not all consumers have the same buying power either, nor the same demands. Some benefit far less from modern industrialized society than those who have more buying power. And some, even though they do have the financial means to benefit greatly from technology, choose not to do so. Some people tread much more lightly on the earth than others, so to speak. Is it really fair to say that the duty of restitutive justice is shared equally amongst all those in a technologically advanced society, regardless of considerations like wealth and lifestyle? The duty owed which is described by Taylor as "return[ing] the favour [other organisms] do us by doing something for their sake" (306), is not shared equally among us all. Indeed, some peoples, like many First Nations, may not even view our advanced technology and industrialized society as something they have been benefitted by at all. In fact, quite the opposite may be true. Surely, then the duty of retributive justice cannot apply to "all of us who live in the modern industrial societies" with equal strength. And yet, is it so wrong of Taylor to want to ease the "burden of eternal guilt" (Taylor 305) as Katz seems to think it is? Despite the fact that Taylor's notion of restitutive justice is problematic, the restorative acts it calls for can hardly be called "an unrecognized manifestation of the insidious dream of the human domination of nature" (Katz 1991, 90). Implicit in Taylor's theory is the recognition of the loss of something with inherent worth which redeems the theory from the picture that Katz paints of it as the ethic of the dangerously optimistic anthropocentrist. Continuing in our analysis of Katz's beliefs about the philosophical assumptions which underpin restoration, let us return now to the case at hand. Do the members of the M C C actually consider their work to be fulfilling a moral obligation? When asked if they believe that humans have a moral obligation to restore degraded systems, most members admitted that this was not a 52 question that they had really considered before. Thus, many of the members were not able to answer the question in such a way that would make it possible for a philosopher to identify whether or not they were anthropocentrically motivated or more biocentrically motivated. Let us look then at what they said when asked the question, "Do you think that we have a moral obligation to restore the systems that we degrade? Why or why not? If so, how would you convince others who do not share your sense of moral obligation that to do so is the "right thing to do"? Participant 2 said the following: No, I don't feel a moral obligation to do the work and I think in a very qualified way that I would say no to the larger question that the community in general has any sort of moral obligation. At the bottom we have a very commonsensical and pragmatic obligation to maintain the system in a very general sense because the system provides the resources on which we survive and conduct a civil society in some level of comfort and quality (Participant 2). Participant 2 went on to say that he clearly recognizes the substantial interdependence between human communities and the environment in which they live and that we have obligations to maintain or sustain an environment that can sustain us. He does not feel a moral obligation to maintain a particular species of animal, but he does see a need to maintain as many of them as we can, because of the desirability of genetic diversity and also because we do not have a great enough understanding of how ecosystems function. He concluded by saying "I personally do not attach great importance to some inviolability of other organisms in the way that some people do" (Participant 2, December 10, 1996). Participant 6 gave a long and complex answer to the question of moral obligation. He began by stating that he felt the obligation to restore, but then stated that everyone is responsible for their own moral decisions: "I may attempt to influence them, but that is as far as I can go" (Participant 6). He continued: There is a circularity, because we are part of the natural world, and because we have done this damage to the natural world, and to ourselves ... so it is enlightened self-interest, i f you like ... As part of my effort to answer that question, I have been 53 teaching myself, and learning about the Native way of looking at the world. In their view, the rocks are alive, and the trees are not just alive in the biological sense, they have spirit. They would not cut a tree down — they have a ceremony, a way of re-establishing the balance that they disturb by cutting that tree down. One of the things I struggle with is trying to reconcile that with our [non-Native] view which is so different, so profoundly different, which is that that tree has no value until it is cut and chopped up into lumber and made into a piece of furniture. It is something very hard for me to resolve, and its sort of an ongoing thing. And then you see people like the animal rights people who say you can't kill anything, and that is not right either because we have to live, too. Animals don't have more rights! We need to eat, and we can be vegetarian, but it is quite difficult to be vegetarian and even if you are a vegetarian, you know, your wheat fields used to be the habitat of something, and [are] no longer. Virtually nothing lives in a wheat field other than wheat. So does this really get you any further ahead? ... I guess our responsibility is that if we do kill something because we need it then you must make the most of it. And to make sure that we don't kill any more than we need, no matter what it is, trees, deer or fish. Participant 6's views illustrate nicely the problems with trying to capture the dynamic, complex nature of a practitioner's moral views about responsibility and categorize his views within the more rigid categories that philosophy provides. A lot would be lost by trying to pigeon-hole his views into one school of philosophical thought or another. And it is clear that he is not at all sure what to think about this question of moral obligation, and it would be a unhelpful to the negotiation process to force his views to rigidly into a predetermined, consistent, coherent theory, despite the fact that to have a more coherent view would allow him to make a stronger claim against others. At any rate it would be unfair to say that he has given much consideration to the notion of restitutive justice. Participant 1 approaches restoration "as an ethical person" but also acknowledges that one might have to resort to arguing for what is in people's best interests. He gave an example of those people who are only interested in having the fish come back. Participant 1 says that one must "appeal to their reason and argue that, if [they] want the fish back, [they had] better start taking the broader view of the entire watershed, and start caring about the whole thing because that is the only way the fish will come back to stay — and your grandchildren won't be able to come 54 fishing here if you don't" (Participant 1). He was not sure what form the obligation took, but did differentiate between people's self interest and a "basic wanting to do the right thing." His notion of doing the right thing seemed to mean looking beyond self-interest, and looking more holistically at things. He talked about running the project in a way which created "an ethic of long term protection" (Participant 1, December 6, 1996). Participant 5 of the G V R D has a complex answer to this question, too: In a way I think we do [have an obligation to restore degraded ecosystems]. In another way it serves our interest to do it. It is kind of like the planet is finite so there are limits to what you can do and so I think that it is important to protect where we can and to restore and enhance where we can ... In a way it serves our interests to do some restoration work but I also think that your question alludes to a higher level of obligation, and I think I agree, I believe that. I think that there is that obligation to pass it on to our children's children. I would say that there is an obligation to the ecosystem, too, but humans are a part of that ecosystem and I guess we are not going to suddenly go away. So it seems to me that we have got to try and achieve a new balance — something that is sustainable. Participant 5 also differentiates between self interests and a "higher level" of obligation. Just what form this "higher obligation" takes is not quite clear, but he does mention obligations to future generations. We can also see evidence of a holistic view of things in that he does not wish to set up a dichotomy between humans and ecosystems, and in this way his view is somewhat biocentric. However, he stresses duties to other humans, not ecosystems. Implicit in his response is the rational choice perspective, where the agent is motivated to act in a way that reflects not only rational self interest, but Participant 5 also includes the interests of future generations in this moral equation. Participant 7 gives a slightly confused answer to this question: I don't think [we have a moral obligation to restore ecosystems]. I don't say, "I am doing this because society has caused these problems." I think that if you were to do that you would have to take some of the problems personally — you personally or morally, or take ethical responsibility. I didn't grow up here ... you have to be causing the problem to think that you are morally responsible for fixing it. Some of the reason I am involved is that I think that people should volunteer to fix problems, environmental problems, but I don't think that it is sort of a moral or 55 ethical reason. I don't think, again, if you were to try to sell the community by saying "You guys have a moral responsibility here" ... I don't know if that would be the best way of getting them involved in it. It would almost come across heavy handed. People pave over the stream, it wouldn't be necessarily better for people [to restore] — you could pack more houses in there. I think in the long run the idea is to educate the community and get them involved and the moral responsibility is something that comes later. They are involved, and there is a responsibility there and the only way to get that responsibility is participation. Some ownership and being part of a successful process [will develop responsibility]. Now this is interesting, and is perhaps the most contrary view to that put forth by Katz. Katz claims that moral obligation is what drives restoration at a philosophical level. Participant 7 believes that it is only by getting people involved in the restoration process, and by getting them to feel invested that you can create this sense of moral obligation. It is clear, however, that he feels no obligation to restore because he feels he is not responsible for the degradation of the watershed and is thus not motivated to restore out of a sense of moral duty. Thus we might want to characterize his position by saying that restorative acts performed by those who are not directly responsible for the degradation the act attempts to rectify should be considered to be supererogatory. And yet, he does use the language of "should" which implies that some form of moral obligation does obtain, perhaps in the form of an imperfect duty. Thus, seems fair to say that his beliefs about whether or not it is our moral duty to restore depend on whether or not we are made to feel as though we are somehow responsible for the degradation of an ecosystem and/or the preservation of an ecosystem. And finally, Participant 4 and Participant 3 both agreed that humans do have a moral obligation to restore degraded ecosystems (Participant 4, Participant 3 March 1997). Participant 3 said. "It is not so much a moral obligation to the environment or other humans, but to children, the future. Conserving it for the future, making sure it exists from here on in" (Participant 3, March 1997). He qualified this statement by saying, "[the watershed] should be there forever, and we shouldn't do anything to damage it, but at the same time we still have to be able to house and 56 employ people." In addition to obligations to the watershed, he believes we also have obligations to other humans. It is evident that we would be hard pressed to attempt to categorize the M C C members' views about moral obligations to restore by the traditional categories that environmental philosophy and ethics provide. This is due either to a lack of sufficient development of their positions which would enable them to distinguish to whom or what exactly a moral obligation obtains, or to the fact that often these views are complex, and dynamic in that they may not necessarily be firmly held. Indeed, as Participant 6 said, he is still trying to sort through what he thinks about our moral obligations to ecosystems and to each other. In light of what the M C C have said, it seems clear that (a) there is no strong sense of responsibility, collective or otherwise, for the destruction of this particular ecosystem and (b) it would be hard to justify Katz's claim that the moral obligation to provide reparation is a fundamental assumption behind this project. Thus it seems that Katz is wrong in at least this case where he says: Policies of restoration rest on the assumption that humanity can, and should, repair the damage that human intervention has caused the natural environment. The implicit message is an optimistic one, for it implies that we recognize the harm we have done to the natural environment and that we posses the means and the will to correct these harms. These policies also make us feel good, since the prospect of restoration relieves the guilt that we feel about the destruction of nature. (Katz 1991, 90) The fact that to restore might be the right thing to do seems to be more an added bonus than a driving force behind the Musqueam project and it seems clear that most of those involved do not consider that they were responsible in any direct way for the degradation of the watershed. Indeed, as we saw in the previous chapter, the degradation of the watershed has occurred over many years, and was the result of urbanization — hardly a process that many people consider themselves personally responsible for. It seems that Katz has himself made an assumption for not 57 all the individuals involved in the restoration of the Musqueam Watershed would agree with Katz's statement that they feel they should repair the damage done to the ecosystem because of some duty derived from a sense of retributive justice. In this way Katz has failed in his attempt to account for the way in which at least the M C C restorationists are (morally) motivated. What about Katz's claim that restorationists believe that "the wounds we have inflicted on the natural world are not permanent; nature can be made 'whole' again" (Katz 1991, 90), and that restoration is a technological fix of the kind that got us into trouble in the first place? The M C C members interviewed were asked the following question about how they conceptualized the restoration project: "Do you think of this project as being about fixing something that is broken, i.e. purely as an engineering project, or as a project that has come about because of some sort of Land Ethic, where the goal is more holistic?" Again, there were a variety of answers which show that there are a number of ways to conceptualize projects. Participant 3 and Participant 4 again agreed with what each other said. Participant 4 said: You have to look at all your information before you make your decision. The way I look at the project, the system is not broken, but it is ill so we have to remedy it, and that is our total involvement. This is an interesting response to the question because the rather non-mechanistic notion of ecosystemic health is invoked when he speaks of the system being "i l l" . Participant 3 had a similar response: My understanding has developed since I got involved. We looked at it from a scientific point of view, and it all started because of Northcote's paper. He came in and said, "Well, the problem is, there is not enough water." So we said, "We will get more water — let's drill a well." Then we looked at it and said, "Well, that is only part of the problem" ... and then my point of view suddenly expanded, there was this leap, and I realized that it wasn't just the water that was the problem, and that it was just a bench mark that was going to tell us that we are making some progress. But just the nature of being involved in the work expanded my view, where the goal is now more holistic ... it expanded to the point where you say, "Wait a minute. It isn't just that we don't have enough water, it's the very way that we deal with the environment that is the problem." 58 Participant 5 had a mixed view: I guess with some things it is a technological fix because we are not able to turn back the clock. There is a big portion of the watershed that has been developed ... so when you compare what it was like a hundred years ago there is a huge difference ... But it seems to me that there are some other components to the stream work, like the log placements, there is some benefit there in terms of working with nature and there is some understanding among fisheries people in terms of what makes a creek more attractive to fish or more sustaining to fish ... it is kind of a combination. It is not clear from this statement what he believes counts as a technological fix. He does make the point, however, that the project has attempted to create an environment that is "attractive" to fish, rather than just to humans. Participant 7 had an interesting answer to the question: I think there are almost three levels. The scientific view, there is the level of the individual problems — there is a technological fix, and there is the scientific understanding of the landscape or the watershed level, and that is starting to approach the land ethic level, where you see things greater than the individual problems. You see the sum of the parts, and I guess the land ethic is even greater than the sum of the parts .... I think personally I have grown to understand things that are going on in the watershed, but in terms of a land ethic it is not something that I am really conscious of. I think the land ethic is an understanding, it can be a scientific understanding of processes and how they work over time .... I am not huge on the spiritual aspects of things like this (Participant 7). Participant 7 believes the restoration has forced him to look at the broader picture, and for Participant 7 this means seeing the problems in a broader scientific context than before. I believe it would be safe to say that Participant 7 doe not subscribe to the view of the project as technological fix, because a technological fix implies an immediate, short-sighted solution and rarely conjures up images of long-term planning and an "understanding of processes and how they work over time." For Participant 1, the M C C chair, the project is much more than a technological fix. He believes that many of the problems stem from "blatant ignorance and man's fixation that he is all-powerful and all-knowing" (Participant 1). He says: We are just realizing now that we are just one of the critters on this planet and that we have to live with everything else, and not be so destructive of our land 59 base, and their land base. You have to attack these things in a pragmatic way and you can only engineer so far back in time, and we must work in harmony within our watershed and try to get back to a balance of some kind that is more in tune with nature. So you approach the project as an ethical person, but also as an engineer. Participant 6 had a similar response: We try to stay away from the engineering solutions, although there are times where engineering is needed and is appropriate, as long as the engineering attitude isn't driving the project. The well had to be engineered ... even the log placements that we put in there had to be done in a way that didn't cause erosion problems. So there are always engineering questions; the thing to avoid is to have that attitude or that approach drive the project. Participant 2, as one of the technical experts on the project had an interesting answer: To a substantial measure my role in the project is as sort of an expert, so my job is to think of these things, although others involved in the project will answer this question differently ... Indeed, I would suggest that in some engineering circles, the business of modern engineering is coming to be seen more and more as an enterprise in which people and their actions and their reactions are an intrinsic part of the project. The old idea that you build an object or fix an object and that is engineering is slowly disappearing, because some engineering projects proved to be unsatisfactory, because they didn't satisfy human functional needs or human values or even human aesthetic senses. So the antimony between an engineering project and a more holistic view is, I suspect, breaking down slowly. You'll still find lots of engineers that are glorified mechanics, but you'll also find lots of good ones who will thoroughly recognize that they are trying to organize conditions and circumstances and the artefact, the structure, or the repaired stream, or whatever, is really only part of that. So getting the fish back would be the equivalent of the narrow engineering view. The bigger issue is to create a set of conditions around the Creek such that people can take a variety of satisfactions from it. That is the more holistic view. For the Musqueam people it means having a piece of the environment which delivers culturally significant values as well as the fish themselves. For lots of other people it is about having a piece of quality environment nearby that they can repair to for relaxation or spiritual purposes and for some people it would be about discharging some sort of moral obligation to the environment. More and more the holistic view is coming to be the dominant view, but even within that, different people have different objectives and purposes. From this it is evident that not one of the members subscribes to the restoration thesis that Katz borrowed from Elliot (81-93). The restoration of the Musqueam watershed is humbly undertaken in the spirit not of an engineering fix, but rather as a long-term solution to a problem 60 that has human, socio-political elements as well as scientific ones. The project is not radical, and will require much patience, as the changes made to the ecosystem are observed, and the impact of the restorative effort assessed: We have come to understand that we do not understand the complexities of these ecosystems and perhaps a fairly leisurely pace of intervention is not a bad thing: doing a bit and seeing what the result is, rather than doing some ambitious landscape architecture plan and putting it all into place and then discovering that the fish didn't like this construction" (Participant 2 1997). The M C C intend to take their cues from the ecosystem, not to impose their own grand design. This attitude towards restoration, as we shall see in the final chapter, is one which reflects an ethic in which humans acknowledge their ability to profoundly impact the environment — but also acknowledge that they do not have the wisdom to control nature completely. Thus, a respect for nature and what it can teach us is also a part of the underlying ethic at work in the endeavors of the M C C . Thus Katz mistakenly believes that restoration always demonstrates the arrogance with which he understands humanity surveys the natural world. This arrogance, according to Katz is manifested in the human presumption that we are capable of a technological fix (Katz 1991, 92). Katz makes this mistake because he believes that there is no significant moral difference between types of restoration. It is this belief that has caused him to dismiss an entire form of restoration work which is not only scientifically more legitimate than a technological fix, but also morally commendable. In his failure to distinguish between corporate, national, and grassroots restoration efforts, he fails to see the potential of restoration. Instead, he fixates upon a discussion of the values instantiated in the restored ecosystem — and he assumes that all forms of restoration lead to the creation of similar artefacts: The recreated natural environment at the end result of a restoration project is nothing more than an artefact created for human use. The problem for an applied environmental ethic is the determination of the moral value of this artefact. (Katz 1991, 92). 61 We shall see in the following chapters that restoration does have the potential to create far more than mere artefacts created by humans to satisfy human needs. There is an entire set of ethically relevant features of restoration projects that will help to determine whether or not restoration is 1) ethical and 2) capable of amounting to anything more than an artefact.16 It is the spirit and the process under which the restoration project is undertaken that will determine the moral worth not just of the restored ecosystem, but also of the practice itself. Now then how can we avoid the mistake that Katz and Elliot have made? We need to ask ourselves again what an applied environmental ethic should concern itself with. By consulting the agents involved in the M C C , we have shown that Katz is mistaken: there is at least on case where restoration ecology is being practiced under another set of assumptions: the restoration of the Musqueam watershed is not viewed by its practitioners as a technological fix, nor has it been undertaken in the spirit of making moral reparation. Katz failed to consider the actual, not supposed, motivations of agents involved in restoration. This led him to conclude that a set of philosophical assumptions were at play that in reality could not have been further from the truth as far as the case of the M C C is concerned. We should learn from Katz's failure to consult with practitioners: we ought to consider individual agents in the attempt to analyze restoration ethically. Caroline Whitbeck explains the importance of doing so: Part of the explanation for the misunderstanding and misrepresentation of moral problems is that most of recent ethics and applied ethics have neglected the perspective of the moral agent. Instead, ethics has exclusively emphasized the perspective of the judge or that of a disengaged critic who views the problem from nowhere and treats it as a "math problem with human beings". For the agent facing a moral problem, not only are possible responses undefined, but the nature of the problem situation itself is often ambiguous (Whitbeck 16). 1 6 I intend to show that Katz is right to argue that an artefact has diminished value, but that restoration ecology, as it is practiced by people like those on the M C C does not result in artefacts because of the role of nature itself is allowed to play in the authorship of the finished product. It is artefacts that I will henceforth term the hyperreal that Katz should be directing his criticism at. 62 Whitbeck describes what moral experts often tend to do, or fail to do, as the case may be. Descriptive ethics is an important balance to ethical analysis and even to normative analysis. One of the best places to begin to examine the philosophical assumptions that lie behind restoration projects is the project mandate. Not only does the mandate reveal technical goals for the project, but it also may reveal to the philosopher engaged in descriptive ethics the philosophical underpinnings of the project. The mandate should be a statement that represents the interests of the group as a whole, rather than individual interests. In this way, the mandate could yield moral standards which override the considerations of self-interest on the part of the M C C members. The ethical mandate will then distinguish between self interests and moral standards. This seems right when one considers that morality is concerned with "the best interests of everyone living together as part of a community" (McDonald et al. 7). An ethically sound mandate should reflect a negotiated balance of values. This balance should help to reduce, i f not completely resolve conflicts between interested stakeholders. Thus the ethical side to the creation of a mandate for a restoration project is the just resolution and balancing of competing interests and values. The number of different agencies and individuals represented on the M C C increase the potential difficulty of satisfying all stakeholder interests. In general, stakeholder interests will vary, depending on what individuals believe to be valuable about whatever is under consideration. To demonstrate how individual's modes of valuation will influence their interests in seeing an ecosystem restored, let us look at what values are being expressed in the interests of the M C C members, and in the mandates and objectives of the different agencies individuals represent. Participant 2, as one of the technical experts on the project, had two different motivations for becoming involved with the M C C . One of the reasons he decided to play a major role in the technical side of the project is that he perceived a very good, long-term opportunity to provide 63 interesting and educational hydrological work for his students at the University of British Columbia, where he teaches a hydrology course in the Geography department. The other reason he is involved is that he views his work with the M C C as an opportunity to try to show a broader range of citizens, and citizens' groups, what science can contribute to the concerns that people have about the quality of their community, and also to show them what science cannot do: In the world there is often an assumption that science and technology will solve all our problems, but after a while it becomes clear that they are not going to. So people flip-flop — when they realize this they say that we do not need science and technology. The degree to which you can introduce a more realistic idea about the proper role of a specialist's knowledge is useful (Participant 2 1997). It seems then that the main reason that Participant 2 became involved in the project was to take advantage of an opportunity to educate students in a technical way, and also to educate the public who may be involved in, or come into contact with, the work of the M C C . This latter goal is one which involves improving public understanding and perceptions of the role of science in restoration work. Thus he values the educational opportunity provided by the endeavor to restore the Musqueam watershed. Participant 4 has many interests in seeing that the watershed is restored. First and foremost, his role is to address the ecological needs of the watershed as far the Musqueam Band is concerned, and he is also there to "address the cultural and the historical needs" (Participant 4) of the Band. He says, "I take up the whole ball of wax." Participant 3 agrees that there are many reasons for being involved in the project and many non-scientific values at stake: Everything about the fact that the stream still exists is important, whether it be the cultural needs of our people here, or the educational value of the stream, and although there is no real economic return here, to provide jobs for the community is something that is a goal of the Department here. We are supposed to work under the Aboriginal Fishery Strategy of the DFO and one of the ideals of this was the creation of work for aboriginals ... That is one of the other values, here, putting people to work (Participant 3 March 1997). 64 Participant 3 also believes that his role as an aboriginal fishery officer on the M C C "is to protect the interests of the Band whether they be aboriginal rights or the interests of the Band. And that can differ from protecting habitat or restoring it" (Participant 3 March 1997). We can see then that for the Musqueam Indian Band Fisheries Department officers, the value of the restored stream represents cultural, ecological and perhaps even economic value, and these values are what underlie their own involvement in the restoration project. They are also there to represent the interests of the Musqueam Indian Band. Apart from the immediate ecological goals of the restoration project, Participant 5 believes that "education, cultural values and natural values" (Participant 5) are also at work in the project: Regional Parks are places where you have got some kind of natural values and cultural values and you have got to address protection of those and enhancement as well, because that provides the setting for the people you are inviting in. So there is always that balance between preservation and recreation. Participant 5's role on the M C C is to represent the interests of the GVRD. As we saw in the previous chapter, the GVRD's management plan sets specific scientific goals to be achieved. One of its other goals is to run a public awareness campaign designed to increase user awareness of the watershed, with the end of "promoting recreation in harmony with the environment" (GVRD 1991). It seems then that for Participant 5 and the G V R D , the values that underlie their interest in the restoration of the Creeks are scientific and recreational. It is interesting to note that even within the interests of this one agency a tension exists between the scientific goal of restoring the Creeks, and the recreational interests of the public whom the G V R D officials are meant to represent. So competing interests and values do not always have to occur between committee members and agencies, there can be tensions internal to an agency, too. Participant 7 values the personal enjoyment that he gets from visiting the stream: I grew up on Vancouver Island in a rural area, and there were streams all over the place, so I really enjoy when I am at U B C and I am driving back and it is still light 65 out. I will stop at Musqueam Creek just to see what is going on out of curiosity. It keeps me interested and I think that builds after watching it for five years ... Personally, I am involved because it is close to where I live, and it gives me an opportunity to go down there and be involved ... I don't focus on the fish too much — I think that fish are a great indicator of coastal watersheds so I think that if we can keep fish or restore fish populations, it is because we are doing something right at the watershed level. At the same time, if you see a fish (there are so few fish) there is something very attractive about seeing salmon come back to us. (Participant 7). Participant 7 also recognizes that there are other reasons for valuing the stream, although he doesn't necessarily subscribe to that way of thinking: In terms of value for the community, I think one of Musqueam's great selling features is its symbolic value as it is the last [creek] that is ever going to have promise in the city of Vancouver. So you might say it has symbolic value, educational value and recreational — I think those things are all tied in. That is one thing that is a selling feature and why I became interested in it . . . I don't think its is a sentimental reason — there is a judgement that you make that your efforts are going to be successful or there is hope there. A lot of urban streams don't have much hope in terms of restoring them. So the fact that the Creek has the last wild salmon stock is important, but I am trying to figure out if that gives it more value. I don't think so — that is sort of the salmo-centric view that is another great selling feature (Participant 7). For Page, then, it seems that, although he recognizes the symbolic, cultural and educational values of the Creek, they do not personally motivate him to any large degree. He is motivated by the fact that the project has the potential to be successful, and by his excitement at seeing the watershed's health restored slowly over the past five years. The other community member who represents no agency on the M C C is Participant 6. He recognizes that there are historical, cultural, educational and aesthetic values at work: Al l these are there, and history is particularly relevant in view of the Musqueam First Nation for whom the stream has always had a special significance ... As far as aesthetics goes a stream that is restored is hopefully more attractive than a damaged stream. That aesthetic element is important ... value from the point of view of fish is clear ... There is definitely a fish angle here, as there is in most restoration projects in B C , but from my point of view, fish are a kind of hook (pardon the expression!) ... So the Creek definitely has symbolic significance simply because it is the last stream in Vancouver that has a wild run of salmon in it. That in and of itself is of great importance. They are a hook to get people interested, and I am interested in historical streams. 66 Participant 6 here expresses his personal values and interests as well as those which may appeal to the broader community. He agrees that the symbolic value of the salmon stock is important, but mainly because it has broad appeal and thus tends to draw the attention of the community. It seems clear that community awareness and involvement is important to Participant 6. For Participant 1, the main value he is trying to promote, in addition to the ecological values, is the value of community involvement in long term protection. This is directly in line with the policies of the DFO's Salmonid Enhancement Project and the Stream Keepers initiative: One of the intents was to have full inclusion, and also to have all the land uses represented ... where you have an active group on a stream you see a difference ... Aesthetics are definitely a part of it, too: it is a constant goal and a constant battle because the location of the Creek is in an urban area — in fact it used to be called Tin Can Creek because it was so littered ... As for historical continuity, of course the intent is to re-create more than anything, but realistically there are limitations because of the changes and urbanization that cannot be put back (Participant 1). For the DFO, community involvement in the restoration and preservation of fish habitat is an explicit policy goal, as we saw in the excerpt from the Policy for the Management of Fish Habitat made by the DFO. Thus, for the DFO, their interest in full inclusion is motivated by the recognition of the value of the community as a potential ally or partner in the restoration and preservation of fish habitat. The main values, then, that affect the stakeholder interests in the project are as follows: (1) the recreational value of the ecosystem, especially within the parks; (2) aesthetic value of a restored ecosystem; (3) the symbolic values of the last remaining wild salmon stock and the genetically distinct cutthroat trout population; (4) the value of the community as a human resource to aid in the implementation of long-term protection measures for the watershed; (5) the value of the opportunity that restoration represents to educate students about biology and hydrology; (6) the value of the restoration project as a means to educate the broader community 67 about their environment and about the role and limitations of science and technology in the restoration of ecosystems; (7) the economic value of the restoration project as a means and an end for creating jobs; (8) the value of the project as a unique opportunity in Vancouver for successful restoration of an urban watershed; (9) the cultural value that a restored ecosystem would represent to the community, and especially to the Musqueam Indian Band; (10) the ecological value of a restored ecosystem as a place of increased ecosystem health or integrity and; (11) the value of the historical continuity that a restored ecosystem would provide. Al l of these different ways of valuing a restored ecosystem will translate into different goals and priorities for action; thus the interested stakeholders respective values will inform their stakeholder interests. Not all differing ways of valuing will lead to conflicts, but some differences in belief will almost certainly cause a level of friction among people, or even cause personal conflict for individuals whose values translate into conflicting interests and desires. For example, the recognition of the recreational value of the ecosystem drives the GVRD's desire to create more mountain-biking trails. This desire conflicts with the desires of the G V R D to protect the streams and with the desires of those members of the M C C who value the ecosystemic health or integrity and who wish to decrease erosion and enhance the riparian zone. Thus the desire to keep the Pacific Spirit Park's status as a center for the community's recreational activities such as mountain-biking, and the desire to protect the fish habitat come into conflict. We can see then that people's values influence stakeholder interests, and that in this way differences in valuations can cause conflict. What can be done resolve such conflicts ethically? In what way can environmental philosophy help? Environmental philosophy has spent much time and effort exploring the implications of the various ways of valuing nature. Surely, then, environmental philosophy can help resolve discrepancies arising from conflicting stakeholder interests and values. Perhaps the 68 first step would be to label the individual's beliefs in order to determine where they fit into the debate in environmental philosophy which is something that is dependent upon the way that they value nature: this individual is a deep ecologist, this one is an anthropocentric reformist, this one is a social ecologist. The next step would be to help individuals formulate their beliefs in the way in which environmental philosophers attempt to formulate their own beliefs: this would help them to see the origins of their differences. By determining what kind of moral consideration people extend to ecosystems, and to nature in general, it would be easier to see where people's interests are compatible, and to identify where conflict may arise. By clearly defining the moral position of committee members, the process of negotiation should become clearer: a constructive honest dialogue could aid in the process of weighing the respective user interests. The structure of philosophical debates could lend a framework to the negotiation process, and allow people to argue their positions more cogently than before. Indeed, how likely is it that our friends above, struggling to define a list of action priorities and long term goals for their restoration project are going to have highly developed, theoretically complex ethical views on the environmental crisis that they face? Surely it should be philosophy's role to help individuals involved in restoration projects understand and develop their beliefs about the valuation of nature, in an attempt to facilitate rational and cogent negotiation of user interests. There are three reasons to reject this proposed role for environmental ethics. The first is that, as we have already seen, the field of environmental philosophy is filled with competing, irreconcilable opinions which has served to draw attention away from the common goal of finding solutions to practical environmental problems and to focus discussion on theoretical concerns. Recall Callicott's plea from the introduction in which he stresses the need for genuine dialogue among philosophers that transcends their political and theoretical debates (Callicott ix). 69 The problem with many of the solutions that environmental philosophy has to offer is that solutions such as radical paradigm shifts, or the abolition of patriarchal institutions are not solutions that the interested stakeholders described above are going to find particularly helpful in the short term, although they may agree that these solutions may work in the long term. It is really a question of how far back one looks in the causal chain. Where philosophy prides itself at getting to the primary, fundamental causes of environmental degradation, a practitioner's concerns are going to be with causes less remote. This does not mean that solutions to the primary causes, such as ending patriarchy or social hierarchies, cannot be incorporated into the mandate, but it is unlikely that practitioners are going to see the solution to conflicts in stakeholder interest as being most satisfactorily resolved on a theoretical level. Forcing stakeholders to look at what divides their opinions on a fundamental level will not necessarily help them to resolve their differences, and in fact will likely only make conflicts worse. Stakeholders may have not have thought back far enough in the causal chain of events to ascribe the environmental degradation of the salmon stock to anything more fundamental then the urbanization of the watershed. They may not ask the normative question of whether or not the watershed should have had its hydrology changed to accommodate housing and roads in the first place, for the question is moot for a practitioner who finds herself in a situation where restoring the original hydrology of the watershed is simply not an option. More immediate causes of degradation, such as residents emptying swimming pools into storm sewers, are what more likely cause them concern. Consequently, if environmental ethics is going to be helpful, it had better offer something more directly relevant to the contextual features of specific cases. The second reason that an ethicist should resist the temptation to transport the negotiation process to the theoretical level upon which environmental philosophy operates is that less well formulated opinions are more malleable, and therefore more conducive to the process of 70 negotiation. In addition to this, we are more likely to find that practitioners' ethical beliefs resist philosophical categorization and that they are more flexible and dynamic. Consequently, it is likely that philosophical categorization will not do justice to their beliefs. The final reason that there is a problem with this philosophical project is that even if the members of the M C C were to reach agreement at a deep philosophical level about how they value nature, this would not necessarily translate into shared or even mutually compatible practical aims. For example, a shared belief in the intrinsic value of the coho salmon stock will not inform what strategies should be given priority for their preservation. Some might consider the restoration of the riparian zone to be of the highest import, and others might feel that the education of the local community, because of recent fish kills related to swimming pool water-dumping, should take priority. Thus, a conflict might arise despite a deep philosophical solidarity over the priorities for the restoration project, which may in turn cause conflicts over how the resources at the disposal of the M C C are used or distributed. In what way, then, should we proceed? As many of the values we identified earlier as belonging to certain individuals on the M C C are widely recognized or shared by other members of the M C C , we can see that in this particular case there will not be too much tension between interests. Although the ethical discourse for the rest of this paper could center around a discussion and evaluation of these values that are held by various members of the M C C , there is still the question of how negotiation of interests should take place within a restoration project's committee in such a way that would render the resulting mandate ethically sound. 71 Chapter 4 — Balancing Values and Stakeholder Interests It was argued in the previous chapter that personal value judgements form the basis of stakeholder interests and that stakeholder interests will structure the priorities for a restoration project. Environmental philosophy's role should be to show how it is possible to achieve an equitable balance of values, and thereby achieve an equitable balance of stakeholder interests. Keeping in mind that a project mandate should be a statement that represents the interests of the group as a whole, rather than individual interests, we can argue that not only do the stakeholders have a working relationship with one another, but that they also have an ethical relationship with one another: the members of the M C C have recognized the interests of their fellow Committee members and consequently they have the basis for an ethical relationship, based on the mutual respect of those interests. Recall from the last chapter that most individuals interviewed from the M C C acknowledged that there were other interests apart from their own at play in the restoration project: a search for mutually satisfactory and beneficial outcomes ought to follow from this recognition of others' interests, which forms the basis for the M C C members' ethical relationship to one another. This chapter attempts to show how a balance of stakeholder interests can be facilitated in an ethically sound manner. It will be argued in this chapter that there are two crucial principles that can be derived from the values of the M C C , and from the original mandate of the M C C . It should be noted that the use of principles in the endeavor to achieve an equitable balance of stakeholder interests is the normative correlative to the descriptive ethics I have heretofore engaged in. As was argued in Chapter 1, a blending of the descriptive and the normative is an approach much favoured in bioethics today. It should be noticed, however, that there is a difference between principles, and rules. This distinction is made in McDonald et. al. and is useful in this context to explain why it is that principles, rather than rules should be applied to a situation where the consideration of 72 competing interests is involved. Generally speaking, then, a principle requires more thought than a rule because often principles conflict with one another, owing to the fact that there may be more than one relevant principle that applies to a given situation. Careful thought must be given, then, to which principle is weightier, or of more import in a given situation. In the case where there are conflicting rules, however, one must ask which rule is valid, not which rule is most important, because "either a rule applies to a situation or it does not" (McDonald et. al. 10). Thus, the use of principles necessitates a level of circumspection that is appropriate for the just consideration of conflicting interests, and the just balancing of values. There is nothing formulaic about their application in this case, as some people believe of the principled approach to conflict resolution, for we have already engaged in descriptive ethics to safe-guard against painting a moral picture that does not capture the complexities of the practice of ecological restoration. Thus, the issues under consideration have been drawn from the case at hand, rather than from any theoretical concerns, and consequently, the principled approach can achieve a balancing of competing considerations. Although there are likely many other principles supported by the various values of the M C C members, two principles, i.e. the principles of equal consideration and equitable participation, are crucial to the ethical resolution of conflicting interests and also to the process of finding an equitable balance of values. Owing to the vital ethical and practical importance of the resolution of conflicts in stakeholder interests and to the importance of balancing the values of the relevant moral community, not only will these principles apply to the case study under consideration, but they will be applicable to all forms of restoration ecology, be it grassroots, national/government- run, or corporate-run restoration. One of the values that was cited by most members of the M C C in the last chapter was the value of the community as a resource to aid in the implementation of long-term protection for the 73 watershed. Another was the value of the opportunity the restoration project represents to educate the broader community about their environment and about the role and limitations of science and technology in the restoration of ecosystems. We saw in Chapter One that these two values are reflected at present in the temporary mandate the M C C drew up: The purposes of the Musqueam Watershed Committee are ... To engage in education and information collection and dissemination to increase public awareness .... To carry out the purposes of the committee in a democratic and open manner to foster community participation and support (Musqueam Creek Committee Mission Statement). These values concerning the role of the community in the restoration process also have normative implications for restoration. In addition to these values being demonstrated in this particular case study, we also saw in the previous chapters that the DFO is interested in promoting public awareness and community support for restoration projects. A cynic might suggest that this policy of the DFO, found in their Fish Habitat Strategy, reflects the government's unwillingness to fund and provide the personnel to undertake restoration projects, and that this policy is a way to off-load the responsibility for restoring ecosystems they have allowed to degrade onto the local community. Although there may be some truth in this, one should not be so quick to find fault with such a policy. It seems to be widely agreed by the M C C that having the community involved in the restoration of the Musqueam watershed is essential to ensuring the project's long-term viability. The value of community participation and the value of community education, both of which are recognized by the M C C , can be used to support two principles which are the most ethically significant principles in restoration ecology because they are the key to finding an ethical balance of stakeholder interests. These two principles can be labeled the principle of equal consideration and the principle of equitable participation respectively.17 They provide a more 1 7 These two principles are part of a number of basic principles developed by McDonald, Stevenson and Cragg in Finding a Balance of Values: An Ethical Assessment of Ontario Hydro's Demand /Supply Plan. Report to the Aboriginal Research Coalition of Ontario. Unpublished Ms. 74 refined version of what could be called a principle of full inclusion that we have seen is supported by much of the policy that was cited in Chapter One. By refining a principle of full inclusion into two separate principles, one is able to clarify what exactly is and is not entailed by this notion of full inclusion. Let us look at what McDonald, Stevenson and Cragg say firstly about the principle of equal consideration: Each person deserves equal consideration ... no one's interests are to be given a privileged position and no one's interests are to be ignored because of race, creed, colour, birth, gender, handicap, social or economic status ... It is important to understand that equal consideration is not the same as equal results .... Equal consideration raises the question of equal consideration of what. Here, we would suggest that in a "free and democratic society" there is a consensus that equal consideration should be given to the welfare or well-being of each member of society in public planning (McDonald et. al. 20). Within the context of restoration ecology, we can take this principle to mean that each stakeholder's interests must be given equal consideration. Of course, as McDonald et al point out, this does not mean that each stakeholder's interests will require equal attention. This principle merely states that all must be considered equally. This principle also raises the question of what constitutes an interested stakeholder. In matters of public planning, McDonald et al have suggested that under the principle of equal consideration, each member of society should be deemed an interested stakeholder. We will try to make sense of this notion later on in the chapter. The second principle, that of equitable participation is different from the principle of equal consideration, but both are inherently inclusive in character. Again let us look at what McDonald et al have said about this principle: The principle of equitable participation says that each competent individual's thoughtful assessment of his or her own welfare is to be taken as morally determinative. This principle is anti-paternalistic ... affected parties are to speak for themselves. Together the principles of equal consideration and equitable participation provide November 7, 1992. They are however, also reflected in the wider body of literature in environmental ethics, most notably by Peter Singer in his utilitarian argument for the inclusion of sentient organisms in the set of organisms that deserve moral consideration. 75 that no one is to be ignored or left unheard and that no one ... has a privileged moral position ... The principle of equitable participation is subject to misunderstanding. It is first of all about input rather than output. Simply put, having a say does not always guarantee getting your way. Equitable participation is not about having a veto over development; it does mean having a say, being heard (McDonald et. al. 21). This principle compliments the principle of equal consideration in that it safeguards against the presumption that one can know what is in the interests of those whose self-determination of their own interests ought to be considered morally determinative. For the practice of restoration ecology this mean that not only should all interested stakeholders be considered equally in the decision-making process, but that only the competent stakeholder himself or herself is capable of determining what his or her interests are. These two principles reflect the values of not only the M C C restorationists, but also those of a democratic society. Andrew Light and Eric Higgs have written on the subject of what they call "the inherent participatory capacity at the heart of restoration" (227-247). Light and Higgs argue that ecological restoration must be seen in its political context by its practitioners, in order for the practice to avoid resulting in the commodification of nature18. They argue that neither the practice of corporate restoration, typically done in the United States, nor the more Canadian practice of nationalizing nature by having state interventions in ecological management "offers a political setting wherein the democratic potential in restoration can be realized fully" (Light and Higgs 231). Light and Higgs argue that the practice of restoration ecology has this fundamental, inherently participatory or democratic potential, and that "ecological restoration ought to connect us to each other as participants in a process that should be integrated into a close communal connection with the land" (Light and Higgs 234). It is clear, however, that Light and Higgs would certainly prefer the nationalization of nature to the commodification of nature which can This notion of commodification of nature will be explored in the next chapter more fully. 76 occur when corporations are involved in restoration. Indeed, the very notion of a corporate restoration seems antithetical to democratic values. However, in the case at hand, all of the M C C members agree that involving the community in a democratic fashion in the restoration process is important to its long-term success, despite the fact that it is often a frustrating process: It is plain that if there are one or two technical objectives in the project they would be more efficiently and more effectively be carried out by a smaller group — say the DFO acting as a benevolently paternalistic government. But not everyone in the community would agree with the objectives of a single agency or a small group. On the other hand, trying to draw in as many people from the community as they can is unlikely to satisfy everybody, or perhaps even nobody, because you are always watering one set of objectives to satisfy another set of objectives. But in the long run, that is the whole business of trying to govern a society — and in a microcosmic way the decisions about the way they try to preserve or restore or maintain these lands is like how we try to run all our social affairs and in that context it is important (Participant 2 1996). The political context of restoration is of the utmost importance, and thus two principles that are most directly relevant to this context must be considered further. There are two residual questions, which are derived from the principles of equal consideration and of equitable participation. The first is the question of who counts as an interested stakeholder, and the second is by what means the decision making process is to take place to ensure that these principles are upheld. Who Counts as an Interested Stakeholder? Perhaps the most relevant question we can ask is whether or not non-human organisms ought to be considered to have interests in the same way humans do, because, if they do, then non-human organisms would be entitled to the same ethical consideration as human stakeholders. Secondly, how can we know (a) what these interests are, given that non-human organisms are not able to articulate in our language what is in their interests, even i f they were able to give thoughtful consideration to their situations, and (b) if non-humans can be considered to have 77 interests, how ought these interests to be represented on a committee such as the MCC? To answer the question of whether or not non-human organisms can be considered to be stakeholders, we must first find the answers to these questions, since a stakeholder by definition must have interests. Let us return to Taylor, who would doubtless point out that, at least in the case of the Musqueam watershed, neither the fish, nor the other critters and plants that comprise the ecosystem, have been officially considered interested stakeholders. But can we make sense of this notion of non-human animal interests? Taylor would have us conceive of a non-human organism as "a teleological center of life, striving to preserve itself and realize its good in its own unique way" (Taylor 120). This is not a unique notion in and of itself. Indeed, any person subscribing to the Darwinian notion of the struggle to remain fit and to survive would be likely to agree that animals do have interests and therefore conclude that they do have a certain telos to their existence.19 What is less obvious, however, is Taylor's claim that humans can achieve "a genuine understanding of [an organism's] point of view" (Taylor 120). He goes on to say that those who have studied an organism in depth in the way many scientists do "can then imaginatively place [themselves] in the organism's situation and look at the world from its standpoint" (Taylor 121). It is important to note that Taylor claims that this mode of understanding applies to particular individual organisms, and not just to a species as a whole. He says, "when observed in detail, its way of existing is seen to be different from that of any other organism, including those of its species" (Taylor 123). Now let us suppose for a minute that what Taylor claims is true. The principle of equal consideration demands of us that we give each individual's interests equal consideration, "regardless of race, creed, colour, birth, gender, handicap, social or economic status" (McDonald 1 9Taylor has a complex notion of what it means for an organism to be a teleological center of a life, his notion of an organism's striving to preserve itself and to realize its good is not the same as the common Darwinian notion that is generally accepted by modern science. Taylor finds the concept of fitness too limiting, although this tendency to maintain fitness is included in his concept of an organism as a teleological center of a life. 78 et al 19). Should we therefore add species to this list of those deserving of equal consideration? Does having an interest entitle them to be considered under the principle of equal consideration? Peter Singer argues effectively for the inclusion of non-human interests under the principal of equal consideration. He claims that all sentient organisms have an interest in avoiding suffering and "the fact that [a being] is not a member of our own species cannot be a moral reason for failing to take its suffering into account" (Singer 194). Singer terms that discrimination against the consideration of non-human suffering, speciesism, and he equates it with racism. Certainly, if we acknowledge that there are some non-humans who have the capacity to suffer and thereby acknowledge that they have an interest in the avoidance of suffering, we have by our own acknowledgment laid the foundation of an ethical relationship. Although this same acknowledgment on the part of the individual M C C members of the fact that their fellow members also had interests formed the basis for their ethical relationship, the ethical relationship between humans and non-humans will be different, owing to the fact that the non-human organisms cannot recognize the reciprocal interests of humans. This would be relevant if we considering a theory that bases morality on reciprocity. However, this theory will fail to include non-human animals, and perhaps even some non-sentient humans, in the moral community, as they are incapable of recognizing reciprocal interests. This inability is no reason, however, to exclude them from the realm of moral considerability. Thus, it seems that whether one construes the interests of non-human organisms as being the avoidance of suffering, or in a different, life based, approach like that of Taylor2 0, we are obliged to extend moral considerability to them, as there is no good moral reason for exempting non-human organisms that does not lead to an inconsistency in the way we regard those human beings who are nonsentient or not capable of having an interest in living. 2 0The life based approach was originally put forth by Albert Schweitzer with his reverence for life ethic. See, Albert Schweitzer, "The Ethics of Reverence for Life" in Animal Rights and Human Obligations, eds. Tom Regan and Peter Singer, Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey: Prentice-Hall (1976): 308-25. 79 There is a significant difference between merely having an interest and also knowing and being able to articulate that interest or to show a preference about the matter. It is not clear that non-human animals, and some handicapped humans, are even conscious of the fact that they are "teleological centers of a life" or that they are aware of their interest in avoiding pain, never mind being able to express a preference. However, it seems clear that we must consider these interests, despite this fact, when making restoration decisions that will affect their interests, however they are construed. It seems clear then that non-human animals and humans who are unaware that they have interests and who are also incapable of articulating these interests, are in need of representation by proxy on a committee that makes restoration decisions. Not only are there moral grounds for claiming this, but there are also practical grounds, for any restoration project that fails to take non-humans into account will be unlikely to result in a viable and healthy ecosystem. Now the question of how to construe non-human interests is still open. Returning to Taylor and leaving aside the fact that it would be physically impossible for a proxy to come to understand the interests of each individual non-human organism that exists in the watershed to the degree Taylor suggests, we still have yet to decide whether or not Taylor is right in asserting that non-human organisms have interests in the way that he claims they do. Let us put this question aside for one moment, however, and turn to the question of whether or not we are even capable of knowing what these supposed interests might be, for if it turns out that we are incapable of knowing what the subjective interests of non-human organisms are, then the question of whether or not Taylor's conception of non-human interests stands up to criticism becomes irrelevant.21 In his article, "What is it Like to Be a Bat?" Thomas Nagel argues that the problem for humans in conceiving what it is like to be another organism (and thereby beginning to conceive of what the non-human organism's interests may be) is not an epistemological one in the way that the 2 1 For a convincing argument about why Taylor's claim that living things have an interest in maintaining their own existences falls apart upon analyzes, see Fox's article (11-14). 80 problem of other minds is: for the problem is not that we are prima facie incapable of knowing what it is like to be, in Nagel's case, a bat. Nagel is concerned that to even form a conception of what it is like to be a bat, "and a fortiori to know what it is to be a bat, one must take up the bat's point of view" (Nagel 172). From what Taylor has said about how we can come to know what is in another organism's interests, it seems clear that he believes it is possible for humans to know what it is like, to take Nagel's example, for the bat itself to be a bat. This is achieved by adopting objectivity and a wholeness of vision. Taylor first describes what he means by an objective standpoint: Besides adopting the detachment and neutrality of scientific inquiry, we can increase our objectivity by becoming aware of the particular distortions we are prone to, and then making deliberate efforts to free ourselves from them ... To the extent we are able to do this [my emphasis], we more closely approximate the ideal state of reality-awareness concerning individual living things (Taylor 127). It seems implicit in this statement that there is a limitation on our ability to raise our consciousness above the "partiality and warped outlook of our less thoughtful moments in reacting to animals and plants around us" (Taylor 127), but Taylor does not find this limitation an epistemic obstacle. But what of our inability to know what it is like for a bat to be a bat? The limitations our subjectivity put on Taylor's project are not surmountable by merely adopting the attitude of what Taylor terms objectivity, for this would require the human capacity to exceed human subjective limitations of knowing. I can no more will myself to know what it is like for a bat to have sonar than a bat can will itself to know what it is like for humans to have well developed frontal brain-lobes. Taylor fails to acknowledge that there are serious experiential barriers which prevent us from being objective in the way necessary to achieve what he claims for the human intellect. Wholeness of vision is the second requirement for achieving Taylor's reality awareness. He describes how we can achieve this wholeness of vision in our understanding of plants and animals by disregarding the instrumental value that they may posses. Taylor describes how we are able to do this and why this will help us to understand the viewpoint of the creature: To free ourselves from such one-sidedness is to gain an understanding of the whole character or "personality" of an individual based on our recognition of its 81 concrete qualities in all their particularity. The animal or plant is not seen through a screen of abstract forms, categories, or stereotypes imposed by human interests and purposes. Insofar as we are able to achieve wholeness of vision in our grasp of an organism's uniqueness, we come to know the life of that individual as it is lived by it. We then conceive of it as a complete, many-faceted being carrying out its own mode of existence, responding in its own way to the particular circumstances confronting it. When our consciousness of the life of an individual organism is characterized by both objectivity and wholeness of vision, we have reached the most complete realization, cognitively and imaginatively, of what it is to be that particular individual. We have let the reality of another's life enter the world of our own consciences. We know it as fully and intensely as it can be known (Taylor 127). Now this imaginative awareness of another creatures world is highly problematic. Nagel claims that there is no reason to suppose that what it is like for a bat to be a bat is subjectively like anything we can experience or imagine (Nagel 170). Thus, the objectivity and wholeness of vision that Taylor urges us to adopt will not render the desired knowledge. The Cartesian notion that we cannot imagine anything beyond which our own experience provides the material for, would limit our imagination in its ability to deliver subjective knowledge of what it is like for a bat to be a bat. As Nagel says, imagining myself to be a bat tells me what it would be like for me to behave as a bat behaves, but to know what it is like to be a bat I would have to be able to imagine what it is like for a bat to be a bat (Nagel 170). If I cannot know this, then I cannot claim to know what is in a bat's interest. Nagel does not claim that this gives us reason to deny that bats have experiences, though, he merely claims the following: The best evidence [of what it is like for a bat to be a bat] would come from the experiences of bats, if we only knew what they were like ... So if extrapolations from our own case is involved in the idea of what it is like to be a bat, the extrapolation must be incompletable. We cannot form more than a schematic conception of what it is like (Nagel 169). Thus, although epistemically Taylor claims too much for our cognitive and imaginative power, his methodology is likely to render what it is humanly possible to hypothesize about non-human organisms' interests. If we acknowledge that the experiences (and the interests) of non-human organisms have in each case a specific subjective character that it is beyond our capabilities to conceive of, it does not follow that we cannot imagine in an educated manner what is in the 82 organism's interests and have this "schematic conception" counted among the other interests under the principle of equal consideration. The imaginings that render an educated schematic conception of what it is like to be an organism and thus what the interests of an organism might be considered to be are best done by scientists, as Taylor suggests. Thus, although we would be wrong to believe that a scientific/Darwinian description of interests as they pertain to a species does justice to the true nature of individual interests, if indeed they have them in the sense that Taylor claims they do, we can only assert this because, as Nagel points out, we know it would be wrong for Martian observers of humanity to assume that there are certain general types of mental states ascribable to humans: The fact that we cannot expect ever to accommodate in our language a detailed description of Martian or bat phenomenology should not lead us to dismiss as meaningless the claim that bats and Martians have experiences fully comparable in richness and in detail to our own (Nagel 171). It seems then, that we are compelled to recognize that we can never truly understand what it is like to be a non-human organism and consequently never truly know what is in its interests, in a subjective sense. This should not stop us from attempting to imagine, with what objectivity and wholeness of vision we can achieve, and with the concepts and notions that Darwinian theory and biology and ecology provide, what is in the interests of non-human organisms in addition to the most basic interest of avoidance of suffering. For it seems that a description of the interests of non-human organisms that is limited to the interest in the avoidance of pain and suffering is impoverished.22 Thus, although we are not capable of having the understanding Taylor claims for us, science can tell us more about the interests of non-humans than just their interest in pain avoidance. Part of the problem with Taylor's conception of non-human interests is that it is an individualistic approach. He argues that only individual organisms can be seen as having a good of their own. According to Taylor then, the scientist proxy representing organisms' interests who 83 might sit on a committee such as the M C C would be required to spend much time and effort getting to know not just the interests of a certain species23, such as coho salmon, or mountain ash, but of each individual organism which is a teleological center of life, as this is the prerequisite to gaining an understanding of a non-human organism's point of view. And yet, notions of health and integrity, as applied to groupings of organisms such as species or ecosystems, are the only way we are able to account for and represent the interests, of non-human organisms on a restoration committee. Indeed, concern for the environment in the restoration of the M C C is not primarily centred on the individual salmon, as we have seen, although they certainly form a part of the whole with which the restorationists are concerned. The interests of the individuals that comprise a species group or ecosystem cannot be conceptualized or imagined because of the sheer physical impossibility of accomplishing the task of identifying and studying each and every organism in an ecosystem in an attempt of acquire the intimate knowledge necessary for a human understanding of the individual's interests. For even if it were pragmatically feasible to do so, we would likely find it difficult to differentiate in a consequential way between the interests of Coho Salmon X and Coho Salmon Y. Thus, although we have established that non-human organisms do have interests, despite the fact that we cannot verify if these interests are what Taylor imagines them to be, we must recognize that there are both cognitive and physical limitations to our knowing them. In addition, we have a reason for rejecting the life-based approach because it is blind to the existence of species and ecosystems per se, and thus cannot provide any notion of aggregate interests for non-humans. Yet is precisely these aggregated interests that restoration must be concerned with, out of necessity, for restorationists cannot possible hope to consider each individual non-human 2 2 A discussion of the failings of the sentience based approach is beyond the purview of this paper, and thus I would recommend Fox's article for a concise overview (10-11). 23Indeed, Taylor's theory is blind to the existence of species per se, since species per se are not alive on this understanding, and the same goes for ecosystems (Fox 1-13). 84 organism's interests. In addition, the M C C is concerned with the entire watershed's health, not just that of the individuals who comprise the system. Therefore, the representation of non-human interests under the principle of equal consideration is only possible by scientist-proxy who represents the aggregate interests of non-humans as they are couched in terms of species' interests or in terms of ecosystem health or integrity. At this point, the question of whether or not non-human interests should be considered under the principles of equal consideration remains unanswered. Some may argue that such a principle is usually only applied to human communities. It will be argued in Chapter 5, however, that we ought to extend our definition of human community to include the natural, biotic community as well. For to fail to include non-human organisms in our conceptualization of what makes a community is to perpetuate the nature/culture dichotomy which will be shown to be at least partially responsible for humanity's poor relations with nature. Thus, the principle of equal consideration of interests should be applied to humans and non-humans alike, but their interests cannot be represented in the same way on a committee such as the M C C . This is not owing to some relevant moral fact, but rather to the conceptual and practical barriers to having the interests of individual organisms represented by proxy-scientists on the committee. Thus, we have a moral obligation to attempt to understand non-human organisms' interests, despite the fact that we must acknowledge the subjective limitations of doing so, and we ought to have a scientist-proxy represent what is in the interests of species or of ecosystem health/integrity upon a committee such as the M C C in an attempt to uphold the principles of equal consideration and equitable participation. The second question that is thrown up when one considers the implications of the principle of equal consideration is whether or not the interests of future generations should be given moral consideration. Recall that Participant 3 stated that one of his concerns was that the ecosystem be restored and preserved because of the interests of future generations (Participant 3 March 1997). 85 In environmental ethics, the discussion of future generations has often taken place in the context of distributive justice as it pertains to non-renewable resources. Within this context, some have chosen to speak of the rights of future generations to non-renewable resources.24 However, it seems that it is not logical to couch a discussion of present-day human obligations to future generations in the language of rights, as there are two significant problems associated with the rights of future generations. The first is the problem of reciprocity. With a right comes a responsibility to recognize the rights of others, and to owe a debt of reciprocity. This debt simply cannot be fulfilled by a human being that is not yet in existence. Also, rights are generally something we can exercise, which brings us to the second problem which is that a human being not yet in existence cannot be the bearer of anything, including a right. Richard De George attempts to make sense of rights talk, despite the aforementioned problems: Nonetheless possible future entities can be said to have possible future rights. And future generations when they exist will have rights at that time. But the temptation to consider all rights as temporally on a par should be resisted. Moreover, the weight which should now be given to the rights claims which future generations will have should be proportional to the likelihood that such individuals will exist (De George 96). Recall that M C C members speak about future generations having the right to know and enjoy the watershed the way it was, with a healthy salmon stock. But are we to preserve its state for time immemorial? What about changes brought about by non-human evolutionary influences? As present day people, can we make sense of the notion that we have a right to know the woolly mammoth or the dinosaur? Do future generations have a right to know the wild coho salmon stock? If so, for how many generations into the future does this right obtain? Arguing with rights language means we have impossible demands put upon us by future generations. It seems 2 4See Rex Martin and James W. Nickel, " A Bibliography on the Nature and Foundation of Rights 1947-1997" in Political Theory, as cited by Richard De George , "The Environment, Rights, and Future Generations" in Ethics and Problems of the 21 s t Century, ed. K . E . Goodpaster and K . M . Sayre (Notre Dame: Notre Dame Press, 1979), 93-105. 86 the most rational way to avoid such problems is (1) to claim that present existence is a necessary condition for the possession of a present right (De George 98) and/or (2) not to approach this problem of the interests of future generations from a rights based perspective. For although it is unreasonable to approach this problem from a rights perspective, it is not at all unreasonable to be concerned with the legacy we are leaving for future generations. Thus we can see that we run the risk of making rights claims vacuous if we stick too closely to the concept of the interests of future generations in terms of rights. There is a parallel to be made between the consideration of the interests of future generations and the notion of restitutive justice that was discussed in the previous chapter. Recall that it makes no sense to speak of making reparation to a species or organism that has been destroyed, and therefore no longer exists, but that there is still a duty to compensate for the destruction of that organism or species. This is similar to the duty owed to future generations in that, although they do not yet exist, and we do not have a duty derived from any right to address their concerns, for they do not have any, we must acknowledge that our actions have the power to shape what those concerns and interests will be to some extent. For example, the Europeans who settled in the Fraser Basin and who began the process of the urbanization of the Musqueam watershed have influenced the interests of the current inhabitants of that area, as demonstrated by the desire to restore the wild coho salmon stock. We ought to acknowledge that our knowledge of the interests of our fore-bearers might inform what we believe might be in the interests of generations to come. Thus, although we cannot know what will be in the interests of future generations, we have an obligation to imagine, or extrapolate from, our own interests what will likely be the concerns of future generations, and to acknowledge that our actions have the power to shape the nature of interests of future generations. Owing to the fact that we can best imagine what the 87 interests of future generations will be based on our knowledge of our own interests25, the scope of the future community on whose behalf current-day interested stakeholders speak will be influenced by the human composition of the community represented on a restoration committee such as the M C C . Indeed, it would seem that the degree of veracity with which one could claim to speak on the interests of future generations would diminish the further afield one strays from one's realm of experience, so it is likely that most interested stakeholders will be concerned with the future generations of their own families, and thus this will influence the realm of concern again for future generations. De George has a similar notion about our responsibilities to future generations: We can plausibly argue that we individually have an obligation to provide the minimum goods of life necessary for those for whom we have a rather close responsibility. And collectively we have a similar responsibility for preserving the environment in such a way that it can provide the goods necessary for those who come after us (De George 101). It seems, then, that we must restrict the claim to those for whom we have a close responsibility.26 However, it is likely that the Musqueam Indian Band have a different and more complex way of conceptualizing the interests of future generation, in which is reflected their rich history and the importance of ancestral ties. Thus, something else that should be given equal consideration is the culturally different way of conceptualizing the interests of future generations, so that an individualistic way of conceptualizing such interests does not eclipse all other ways of characterizing the interests of future generations. 25Certainly it should be noted that part of what forms our conception of our own interests are current theories about such things as what constitute human health, ecosystem integrity, sustainability, etc. 2 6This is reminiscent of the feminine ethic of caring which suggests that we ought to base our ethical relationships on the notion of caring. To overcome the claim that this ethic is not very good a resolving ethical conflicts, or that it is not very action-guiding, owing to the fact that we are incapable of caring for everyone equally, defenders of the ethic of caring developed the notion that we owe stronger obligations to care for those who are close to us. 88 Thus, under the principle of equal consideration, we must include the interests of the interested stakeholders who are themselves interested in the welfare of future generations, such as Participant 3 and Participant 4 of the Musqueam Indian Band. The interests of future generations can be made sense of, then, in terms of the interests of living people who are concerned for the well-being of future generations, either on an individualistic basis, or a more holistic basis, such as the Musqueam view of the interests of future generations. In this way only can we account for the interests of future generations under the principle of equal consideration. Although we have seen that there are limits to our ability to speak of the interests of future generations, and that we can only consider the interests of living people who are concerned about the welfare of people yet unborn under the principle of equal consideration, and although we have shown that non-human organisms' interests should also be considered, we have begged the question to some extent of how to define "community" or how to define "interested stakeholder". So how should we define "community" for the purposes of restoration, and how should we define the term "interested stakeholder"? Should "community" be defined scientifically by the concept of an ecosystem, so that only organisms living or working within an ecosystem should be considered "interested stakeholders"? Should "community" be defined by geography or municipality? I suggest that we consider that there is a significant moral difference between those whose interests will be directly affected by a restoration, and those whose interests may only be indirectly impacted27. Consequently, the weight given to these interests will differ when making decisions. This is all very well to say, but how does one decide how to distinguish between direct impact and indirect impact upon interests? In order to answer this we need to have a principle of welfare. Welfare is, as we have already seen, to be understood on an individual basis, as there is no one 2 7 We must be careful here about whom we consider to be indirectly or directly impacted, for although it may seem, for example, that other First Nations (especially other Coastal Salish Bands who live in the United States) are not going to have their interests directly impacted by the way the M C C carry out their restoration project, the project may turn out to have quite a significant impact upon them, in terms of say, its symbolic value. Or, the project may affect many other restoration projects that are geographically removed from the Musqueam watershed, in that this project may be used as a model upon which future restoration policy may be based. 89 definition of welfare which suits all organisms and individuals28. That is why we have the principle of equitable participation under which it is agreed that each individual's assessment of what is in his or her own welfare is morally determinative. Thus we can describe something as having a direct impact upon an individual's interests if it significantly affects that individual's welfare in either a positive or negative way. Peter Singer explores this notion that different interests can be weighted differently: Giving equal consideration to the interests of two different beings does not mean treating them alike or holding their lives to be of equal value. We may recognize that the interests of one being are greater than those of another, and equal consideration will then lead us to sacrifice the being with lesser interests, if one or the other must be sacrificed (Singer 196). Of course, in restoration, conflicting interests will not always result in the sacrifice of one life for another, but the concept remains the same. In order to be considered an interested stakeholder, then, one must have interests that will be directly impacted by the restoration project. This does not mean that there are not others of whom it may be said that their interests will be affected indirectly by a restoration project. For example, the residents of the City of Vancouver may have an interest in seeing that the restoration of the Musqueam watershed is carried out in an ethically sound way so that in future their welfare will be more likely to be considered if a restoration of their neighbourhood were to be undertaken. Thus, the way in which the Musqueam watershed restoration is conducted will have an indirect impact on the welfare of the residents of the City of Vancouver. Or, it may be that other First Nations have an interest in seeing that the Musqueam watershed restoration take place in a way which respects the values of the Musqueam people, because the Musqueam restoration can be considered to be precedent-setting in light of the DFO's new Aboriginal Fisheries Strategy. Thus the welfare of other First Nations will be indirectly impacted by the restoration of the Musqueam 2 8This is not to deny that certain groups of individuals are likely to have common interests, or perhaps even lack a notion of individual welfare per se that is distinct from the welfare of the group or community. For example, the notion of welfare that the Musqueam participants will have will be located in their Band's tradition, and also within the Native communities as a whole, and thus their notion of welfare may differ significantly from the other M C C members'. 90 watershed. The peoples' interests that may be indirectly impacted by the restoration project will carry less weight than the interests of those who are directly impacted, however. Thus we can define the term "community" in restoration as the group of individuals, both human and non-human, whose welfare is both directly and indirectly impacted by the restoration project. The question of how decisions ought to be made on a restoration committee such as the M C C remains. We have already seen that those whose welfare is only indirectly impacted by a restoration project do not have their interests weighted as strongly as those of the people who are directly impacted. How should these interests be represented so that the outcome of the process of balancing competing interests is just? One way in which to make decisions that is supported by the principle of equal consideration is that "each is to count as one and no more than one" (Bentham as cited by McDonald et al 19). This view is consistent with the democratic process of decision-making in which the majority opinion prevails. But what of those committee members who represent aggregate interests? In the case of the M C C , Participant 3 and Participant 4 represent the interests of the Musqueam Indian Band, and Participant 5 and Participant 1 represent the interests of the population as a whole, in so far as they work for government agencies. It does not seems just for their interests to count as one and no more than one when they actually represent aggregate interests. How heavily should the interests that they represent be weighted against those of individual community members? If we decide that those who actually live, rather than just work in the area should have more say because their interests are more directly affected by decisions made by the M C C , should Participant 6's interests be weighted more heavily than those that Participant 5 or Participant 1 represent? These questions are extremely complex, and are best avoided. I suggest that a democratic means of settling conflicting interests will not work on a committee where some people represent the interests of groups of people or organisms and where both stakeholders and others whose interests are only indirectly affected are equally represented. Thus the weighting of interests must be balanced in a way which better reflects the strength of the interest, whether the strength be derived from the 91 degree to which welfare is impacted or in the sheer number of interests being represented by an individual. The method of decision making suggested by the DFO is consensus, as we saw in Chapter One. This method would have to incorporate the principles of equal consideration and equitable participation into its proceedings. Although a process such as consensus will not completely eliminate the problems of adequately representing and weighing aggregate interests, it will avoid the problems that arise if a democratic voting system of decision making were to be adopted. Consensus allows for the thoughtful consideration needed to balance values and interests justly. Issues of distributive, and retributive justice that may be especially relevant to the case of the Musqueam watershed restoration, because of the involvement of a traditionally oppressed group, namely the Musqueam Indian Band, can be taken into consideration using the consensus method — an important consideration in light of the fact that an unrefined utilitarian approach, or democratic voting system of decision-making cannot address adequately these issues. Of course there are draw backs to this system of decision making. The consensus model is notoriously slow, and often results in stalemates, or "dissensus". Thus, consensus decision making either results in some form of (ethical) compromise, or it results in a situation where the group must accept internal dissent. This raises the important question of whether or not, when it is an ethical issues that is being addressed, ethical position are type of thing one should have to compromise over29. The alternative, however, is to let ethical decisions be made by democratic vote, and it is doubtful that majority decision making is any more ethically right than any one individual's decision. This 2 9 0 f course there is compromising, and then there is compromising. Some form of concessions are of course a fundamental part of negotiating a balance of values in stakeholder interests, however, one hopes that no one is forced to compromise over an ethical issue of fundamental importance for the sake of consensus. At least in a vote, dissent can be noted "for the record" by recording the numbers for and against a particular resolution. However, the fear that in consensus decision making the voice of dissent is forgotten after consensus is reached is mitigated against by the fact that any concessions made can be recognized by subsequent concessions made by others to the dissenting individual(s). Thus, by mutual concession making, a community can get on with taking practical decisions, while still maintaining the elements that make it a consensus based community. 92 approach is decidedly more communitarian than utilitarian, and this seems appropriate in light of the fact that many consider the process of grassroots restoration to be a community-building exercise. The principles of equal consideration of interests, equitable participation and of welfare ought to be applied to all restoration projects in order for them to be deemed just, for to ignore the interests and welfare of humans and non-human organisms that are affected by restoration projects, be they grassroots, corporate-run or national projects, is to be morally negligent and shows a blatant disregard for the welfare of others. Let us briefly return to Katz, for it seems that his "almost entirely visceral" (Katz 1991, 92) reaction to restoration can be explained in light of the fact that he has failed to see the potential of restoration. This is because he has chosen only to focus on the moral problems that ensue from restoration that is morally negligent in this critically important way. I believe that Katz was reacting to policies such as the No Net Loss Guiding Principle of the Canadian DFO that attempt to "avoid disruption to the natural productive capacity of habitats by avoiding any loss or alteration at the site of a proposed project or activity, "(Fish Habitat Management Branch 4) and which can easily be construed as indifferent to the welfare of interested stakeholders and other members of the relevant moral community. In order to fulfil its objective, this particular policy states that: First, preference would be to maintain without disruption the natural productive capacity of the habitat(s) in question by avoiding any loss or alteration at the site of a proposed project or activity. Only after it proves impossible or impractical to maintain the same level of habitat productive capacity would the Department accede to compensatory options — like-for-like-compensation, off-site replacement habitat, or an increase in the productivity of existing habitat for the affected stock. In those rare cases where it is not technically feasible to avoid potential damage to habitats, or to compensate for the habitat itself, the Department would consider proposals to compensate in the form of artificial production or supplement the fishery resource, subject to certain conditions as outlined in the policy (Fish Habitat Management Branch 4). A policy like this one would require developers to provide compensation in the form of a restored habitat when their proposed developments necessitate the destruction of another habitat. Habitat similar to the habitat under proposed development would have to be restored to compensate for 93 the loss. In this context, one can see where Katz might get the idea that such policies are legislating technological fixes, for they seem more concerned with square footage of habitat than they are with acknowledging the inherent worth of what has been destroyed, or the welfare of moral communities. Indeed, as we shall see, most corporate restorations and government-run restoration do not operate in ways which uphold the principles of equal consideration and equitable participation, and thus they do not exploit the inherent participatory nature of restoration. It will be explained in the following chapter that the consequences of this are not only that corporate or national restoration projects are morally censurable, but also that they result in mitigations, rather than true restorations. 94 Chapter 5 — Paradigm Shifts: Wilderness, Hyperreality and Gardens The choice of images or myths we use to structure our accounts of the world is a fundamental one, which radically constrains the questions we ask and the answers we get (Clark and Munn 11). Not only ought we to put restoration in its socio-political context in order to evaluate it ethically, but we ought also to look at some of the cultural paradigms which inform our relations with the natural world. It is important for us to identify which paradigm for human relations with nature will foster a harmonious and sustainable relationship with the environment. If we can find the paradigm within which restoration ecology is or ought to be practiced, we can also see that there might be other paradigms which, because of the kind of relationship between humans and nature they entail, can be deemed unethical. First, then, we will examine the "wilderness" paradigm; secondly, we will look at the paradigm of "hyperreality"; and then, after returning briefly to Katz, we will propose the Garden Ethic as the most satisfactory paradigm for restoration ecology. It will be shown that when practiced under the most ethically sound paradigm, restoration ecology is not only a morally acceptable practice, but one which ought to be encouraged; for within this Garden Ethic there can be found a model for human stewardship of nature which holds the most promise of improving our relationship with the natural world, and provides an explanation of why we ought to exploit the democratic potential of restoration. The Cult of Wilderness Let us begin by looking at the historical aspects of the notion of wilderness. In the history of human civilization, wilderness has been either feared or revered. In the Judeo-Christian tradition, for example, the tradition that influenced and continues to influence Western thought so profoundly, there is evidence of this ambivalence towards the natural world. Yet despite the 95 ambivalence, the dominant view of the wilderness was that it was to be feared and even despised. Indeed, it is in the Bible that we find some of the word's strongest associations: it is at once a place where Satan resides, and also a place where God can be found. When Adam and Eve are driven from the garden of Eden, it is into a wilderness. In Exodus, we find Moses and the Israelites wandering in a wilderness for forty years, during which time, although the Israelites fall frequently into apostasy, God continues to reveal himself in dramatic ways. It is no coincidence that the location of Christ's temptation is the desert: "Wilderness, in short, was a place to which one came only against one's will, and always in fear and trembling" (Cronon 71). And yet early in the Christian era, hermits and early Participant 2 Fathers took to the desert to find God, and the founder of Western monasticism, St. Benedict, chose to found his monastic order in the wild, away from normal human existence. This, however, was extraordinary, and it seems that for ordinary folk an adversarial relationship with the wilderness prevailed over the centuries. There is evidence of this, for example, in the Old English poem, Beowulf (probably written between 800 and 1000), where the monster Grendel lives as an outcast in the moors and swamps, and the dragon in a remote cave in a cliff by the sea. The view of wilderness as the opposite of all that is civilised and fruitful continued right up until the end of the sixteenth century. Indeed, it is not only that wilderness was the opposite of a properly ordered human society, but being sent there was also a punishment for those who break the rules of civilisation: in the wilderness was exile from society and even from God. The consideration of the natural world, Telluris Theoria Sacra, written by Thomas Burnet in the mid-sixteenth century, is very much a product of this way of thinking about the natural world: Considering the jagged precipitous shapes of mountains and the irregular and unsymmetrical coastlines of the continents, Burnet concludes that such roughness, such ugliness could not have been the work of God in the creation of the world (Thacker 4). 96 By what alchemy then, was the wilderness transformed in our collective consciousness to represent no longer perdition and pandemonium, but paradise? One could even theorise that the change that occurred in our conceptualisation of wilderness began at just about the same time as wilderness was becoming more and more remote, or, as human civilisation and its impact became more and more ubiquitous: thus the valuation of the wild may contain a practical element of market economics, in which as wilderness becomes more scarce, its worth escalates. This application of free-market economics to our relations with nature is somewhat crude and simplistic, for scarcity can only partially explain the cult of wilderness which has pervaded the modern (at least North-American) consciousness. As more and more land was cleared and wilderness became increasingly remote, wilderness also became less threatening. The battle to keep nature at bay, to keep her from reclaiming what humans had claimed for their own to farm and build on as they willed, had largely been won by the beginning of the eighteenth century. Indeed, as society became more and more industrialised, the way for the Romantic movement was paved, in which nature could be championed against the mechanical. The Romantics would propagate the dualism between the natural and the civilised in a radical new way for now it was in the wilderness that one found the sublime: What Wordsworth described was nothing less than a religious experience, akin to that of the Old Testament prophets as they conversed with their wrathful God ... no mere mortal was meant to linger long in such a place (Cronon 74). In the mid to late seventeen hundreds, wilderness became so alluring that some even sought to bring the wild into the garden in a move which, on the face of it, seems slightly counterproductive, if not paradoxical. At Worlitz, in Saxony and Fonthill in England, the sublime is reproduced in a garden landscape: at Worlitz there was even an entirely man-made volcano (Thacker 184). Philosophers have changed, too: Rousseau describes a way of studying nature which is not really a study at all, but rather a way of transcending the self, and "finding ecstasy in 97 the contemplation of nature" (Thacker 226) - an activity which Aristotle, say, would have thought to be a complete waste of time and energy. Perhaps the person most responsible for the cult of wilderness that is current today is the father of the tradition of American nature writing, Henry David Thoreau. And yet, although his love of nature and the wild are legendary, his emotions are as ambivalent as Wordsworth's were: although the sublime is present in the wild, their reverence is mixed with fear and trepidation. As time went on, however, this began to change, and Cronon argues that even as wilderness became imbued with the sublime (and perhaps even because of this), it was also being tamed. By the second half of the nineteenth century, the terrible awe that Wordsworth and Thoreau regarded as the appropriately pious stance to adopt in the presence of their mountaintop God was giving way to a much more comfortable, almost sentimental demeanour. As more and more tourists sought out the wilderness as a spectacle to be looked at and enjoyed for its great beauty, the sublime in effect became domesticated (Cronon 75). As the tradition of American nature writing continued, fear and trepidation were replaced by the love of something, i f not quite familiar, at least moderately benign. Cronon identifies the "powerful attraction of primitivism" (76) and the regret at the passing of the frontier in North America as the fuel behind the movement. The belief that "the best antidote to the ills of an overly refined and civilised modern world was a return to a simpler more primitive living" can be traced back to Rousseau (Cronon 76). This accounts for the sense of loss felt by many in North America as the frontier was pushed further and further west, until it was gone. This loss of the frontier, coupled with Thoreau's belief that "in wilderness is the preservation of the world" led to the seeking out of what has come to be known as the "wilderness experience"30. Cronon covers more fully than I can here the notion that in wilderness was not just the preservation of the world, but also the preservation of manhood and individualism. This notion arose with the passing of the 3 0 For an interesting exploration of the phenomenon of wilderness experiences, see Rene Dubos, "The Wilderness Experience" in People. Penguins and Plastic Trees, ed. Donald Van De Veer and Christine Pierce (Belmont, CA: Wadsworth Publishing Company, 1986) 142-150. 98 frontier, which had been so crucial in the formation of North America: with this passing also came the passing of an era of "real men" who were the rugged individuals they were meant to be before civilisation "sapped [their] energy and threatened [their] masculinity" (Cronon 78). For it was only in the wilderness that their "true" natures could be preserved: If the frontier was passing, then men who had the means to do so should preserve for themselves some remnant of its wild landscape so that they might enjoy the regeneration and renewal that came from sleeping under the stars, participating in blood sports, and living off the land. The frontier might be gone, but the frontier experience could still be had if only wilderness were preserved (Cronon 78) The ability to cope in the wilderness today is still seen as a mark of masculinity: yet this search for authentic, individualist experience is now not restricted to males. Under the rubric of "feminism", women can also claim the title "rugged individual" if only they too will undergo "the wilderness experience". In a recent issue of Marie Claire, a women's fashion magazine, an Alaskan contest called "Wilderness Woman" is described by one contestant as the "I-Wonder-If-She's-A-Woman Contest?"(Meyerowitz 16), and it has "evolved into a battle for recognition as the meanest, the baddest and the best wilderness woman within a 100-mile radius"(19). Perhaps it is not after all so surprising that this story has made it into the U K edition of the well known fashion and beauty magazine, to be found nestled in amongst the other empowering articles such as "Why I Hate a Man With a Hairdryer", "Gwyneth Paltrow: Marooned on a Desert Island" and "The Kinky Castle Where Women Keep Men in Dungeons". The author of the article, Meyerowitz, describes the Alaskan woman not only as beautiful, "stripped down to a 'GI Jane' tank top that shows off her toned triceps" (22), but also as an independent, rugged individual. The women themselves describe what life is like for those who are able to transcend the evils of "civilised" life by leaving their original homes in other American states, where one woman was "more scared growing up in sunny California that [she is] here"(22). It is in the wilds of Alaska that they are able to find themselves: "I think there is a lot to envy about this lifestyle .... Women here are-able to break out of that stereotypical female role"(22). Another young woman 99 who lives alone in a wood-stove-heated cabin with no running water and whose most recent purchase was a new chainsaw, also feels liberated in her wilderness home: "I'm the only person where I work who doesn't have running water, so I haul my own water .... I pee outside .... I was sick of depending on Alaskan men to cut my wood ... and asking to borrow an Alaskan man's chainsaw is like asking for an appendage." The women in the article are described as "thriving on life in the wilderness" (22). It is evident then that not only can men become "real men" in the wilderness, but so can women! Of course there is a lot to be said for the wilderness experience, and there can be no doubt that for many people, myself included, wilderness is place where some of the most memorable human experiences take place. What is troubling is that now humans all to often go to the wilderness as consumers: The irony, of course, was that in the process [of wilderness coming to embody the national frontier myth], wilderness came to reflect the very civilisation its devotees sought to escape. Ever since the nineteenth century, celebrating wilderness has been an activity mainly for the well-to-do city folks. Country people generally know far too much about working the land to regard ««worked land as their ideal. In contrast, elite urban tourists and wealthy sportsmen projected their leisure-time frontier fantasies onto the American landscape and so created wilderness in their own image (Cronon 78). Perhaps it is not so odd, then, that of all the Wilderness Women who entered the contest in Meyerowitz's article, none were native Alaskans. The phenomenon of going to the wilderness as a consumer of authenticity can be witnessed in the rise of eco-tourism, where "pristine" cultures and wilderness experiences are marketed by tourist companies and are sought out by those who are willing to pay that little bit more to reach these now remote locations. Often, in keeping with the cowboy mentality of frontierism, eco-tourists "rough it" and are prepared to give up the luxuries other tourists enjoy from a holiday in exchange for an "authentic" experience. Advances in science and technology are also partly responsible for making the wilderness less a place to be feared and more a place to be treasured and sought out. With science came a better understanding of ecosystemic functioning, and as often happens, the more science learned 100 about nature and the wild, the more the fear of it diminished. There is also now a scientific motivation for admiring wilderness. It is generally accepted within the scientific community and within the environmental movement that there is a need to preserve pristine environments as datum-lines against which to measure human impact. It is also generally thought that the best way to learn about how best to manage natural resources is to study the functioning of "natural" systems. Aldo Leopold, one of the fathers of environmentalism, was perhaps the first person to locate part of the value of wilderness in its independence from human influence and its self-regulation - a concept that has influenced ecological science profoundly. Indeed, that a system is self-regulating is seen to be a sign of its health or integrity: The other and most perfect norm is wilderness. Palaeontology offers abundant evidence that wilderness maintained itself for immensely long periods: that its component species were rarely lost, neither did they get out of hand; that weather and water built soil as fast or faster than it was carried away. Wilderness, then, assumes unexpected importance as a laboratory for the study of land health...In short, all available wild areas, large or small, are likely to have value as norms for land science (Leopold 251). We now have a scientific rationalisation for valuing the wilderness instrumentally: not only is it aesthetically pleasing, but it is also useful! Leopold's call for a new Land Ethic is heard by contemporary philosophers and many attempts to formulate such an ethic have been made. One such attempt incorporates the wilderness paradigm into the development of a principle of integrity. Laura Westra, in her attempt to develop a concept of ecological integrity under what she calls the "ecosystemic approach", claims that "the value of integrity in its paradigm instantiation (that is manifested ... in a wild, undisturbed ecosystem) is primary" (Westra 59). Echoing Elliot and Katz, she claims that once integrity is lost, even though both similar structure and function are restored to an ecosystem, complete integrity cannot be recaptured. Now we come to the crux of the problem of holding up wilderness as the paradigm instantiation of nature, 101 as that most valuable of landscapes: by definition, humans are excluded from it. It is most ironic, then, that Westra goes on to claim: The project of integrity, as a goal of the ecosystem approach, requires change in both perspective and mindset on our part: the reduction of human beings to parts of the ecosystem's biota (Westra 60). In light of this brief and by no means exhaustive history of our hate/love relationship with wilderness, it is not surprising that the cult of wilderness lies at the heart of the environmental movement, for, as Cronon points out, the concern over wild areas is not just another cause of the environmental movement. In fact it serves as the foundation for a long list of other such concerns that on their face seem quite remote from it. That is why its influence is so pervasive and potentially so insidious ... to gain such remarkable influence [wilderness] had to become sacred" (Cronon 73). In support of this argument, Cronon invites us to look at the sites Americans chose to be their first national parks: it is the most sublime, the most dramatic landscapes that are preserved first, and it was not until the 1940s that the less dramatic landscapes, such as the Everglades swamp were honoured (73). Perhaps the best way to characterise wilderness, then, is as the sublime and the peopleless. This characterisation is, despite its prevalence, deeply flawed. For the notion that there was ever pristine wilderness within the history of humankind, not just in Europe, but also in North America, is but myth. Not only was the frontier pushed back during the European settlement of North America, but so were the people who had dwelled there for hundreds of years, managing the land in ways which are all to often forgotten. If there is a myth of wilderness, there is also a corresponding myth about the way in which the First Nations impacted the land. Far from being a people with the smallest of ecological footprints, some tribes, such as those which inhabited the prairies, engaged in a form of land management that the average lay North American would balk 102 at now. 3 1 Controlled burning of the grasslands was practised and became essential in order to maintain the Savannah ecosystem. Because we have forgotten this fact, many grasslands are threatened by the "invasion" of trees which threaten to transform landscapes that have been prairie landscapes for centuries. So although "wilderness" is often valued for its continuity with a humanless past, it is rarely the case that this state ever existed in the first place. Indeed, as Cronon points out, "the myth of wilderness could only begin as Indians were rounded up out of the 'virgin', 'pristine' land onto reservations" (29). The cult of the wilderness, then, serves to demonstrate the profound distancing that exists from the perspectives of indigenous peoples. In holding up the wilderness as the standard against which to measure the failings of the human world, as environmentalists often do, not only do environmentalists do so under a mistaken notion of what wilderness is and was, but they also fail to see that the "pristine" wilderness has nothing to teach us about the way in which we can live in harmony with nature, for by its very definition it excludes humanity. Perpetuating the crude dichotomy, that is largely myth, between nature and culture or humans and non-humans is the destructive result of perpetuating the cult of wilderness. Indeed, the cult of wilderness forces us to look far afield for inspiration and authenticity ~ both spiritual and scientific ~ to those remote corners of the land where there are humanless landscapes. And as we are encouraged to look farther and farther afield for the most wild, the most pristine, we become less and less inspired by our local landscapes and the experiences we have in our communities, and more and more inclined to believe that any experiences had within the confines of "civilisation" lack authenticity. Cronon's principle objection is that the cult of wilderness "teaches us to be dismissive of or even contemptuous of... humble places and experiences" (86). The "authentic" experience sought by eco-tourists, and the scientifically "authentic" ecosystems that wilderness represent mean that the search for the 3 1 In fact, when Steve Packard resumed the tradition of controlled burning in his attempt to restore the savannah outside Chicago, he was forced to leave a line of scrub along the roadways, to hide from the public the fact that the restoration involved controlled burning. It was thought that the public would be horrified at the site, and indeed some people were (Stevens 118). 103 authentic and the real cannot take place within our own backyards and within the realm of everyday experience. Civilised life itself has become unnatural. Hyperreality At the opposite end of the spectrum from the cult of wilderness, there is a new paradigm described by Albert Borgmann as "hyperreality" (Borgmann 33). Borgmann's exploration of the phenomenon of hyperreality is motivated by the belief that there must be an alternative to the cynical view that everything humans touch is and ever will be artificial and by the recognition of "how constricting the common distinction between the natural and the artificial is" (35). He believes that we have merely constructed new norms, in addition to that of the independence of natural systems (as manifest in the Leopoldian self-regulating wilderness) in an attempt to erect "absolute criteria that would delimit and secure the natural environment once and for all" (35). Terms such as biodiversity, integrity, biocentrism and even the intrinsic value of nature all reinforce the dichotomies that post-modern deconstruction has taught us are fallacies. For this reason, Borgmann sees what I have labelled the cult of wilderness as a very modern project, but with a twist: Whereas the proponents of the modern project used to reproach nature for its recalcitrance, the environmentalists had been hoping for its invincibility, and seeing their favourite threatened with defeat, they want to restore at least its independence (Borgmann 35). Thus, what is emerging is a new and important distinction to replace the older and pervasive distinction between nature and culture, or the natural and the artificial. Borgmann believes that "the critical and crucial distinction for nature and humans is not between the natural and the artificial, but between the real and the hyperreal" (39). One important project for environmental philosophy will be, then, to define what is real, despite the fact that postmodernism has attempted 104 to show that there is no such thing. Borgmann provides us with a workable definition: "what is eminently real has a commanding presence and a telling and strong continuity with its world"(89). This definition of reality is particularly useful in the context of restoration, as often restoration is driven by a desire to restore the historical, cultural and/or ecological continuity of a landscape. Hyperreality, then, is whatever is devoid of continuity with its surroundings, or "devoid of contextual bonds" (Borgmann 40), and thus it is something whose genesis must be entirely human. A rather benign example of the hyperreal is a small town in the U K , called Portmeirion. This town was the product of one man's dream: Clough Williams-Ellis attempted to recreate, with great effort, a quaint Italian landscape, complete with Italian architecture, in the middle of Wales. In the 1920's, Williams-Ellis began to search Britain for a suitable island on which to set his village. The Rough Guide to Wales describes his project: [It was] his dream to build an ideal village which enhances rather than blends in with the surroundings, using a 'gay, light-opera approach'. The result certainly is theatrical: a stage set with a lucky dip of unwanted buildings arranged to distort perspectives and reveal tantalising glimpses of the sea or the expansive sand left behind (Parker and Whitfield 246). Needless to say, to stumble upon such a place while touring the rolling green hills of the Welsh countryside is perhaps one of the most incongruous experiences one can have. What is important to note, and what makes this an example of the hyperreal is that Williams-Ellis deliberately aimed to create something that would be incongruous with the landscape, all the while believing that his design would enhance the surroundings. Borgmann uses the example of a "skiorama" to illustrate the hyperreal: Let me therefore make this modest proposal: an artificial indoor ski area in downtown Los Angeles. What would it look like? You may have seen in a sporting goods store the moving carpets that are mounted like large tilted conveyor belts and allow a skier to ski down the incline so that the skis sliding down and the carpet moving up roughly balance and, to a stationary observer, the skier stays in place. In addition to boots, skis and poles, the skier is given a pair of 105 goggles (skiers are used to these) where the lens is replaced by two microtelevision screens .... We play on those screens moving scenes of ski slopes that are co-ordinated with the varying speed and pitch of the conveyor belt carpet. Everything else is a matter of technological refinement: blowers to simulate the rushing of the wind, a harness to suspend the wayward or crashing skier, and more (Borgmann 38). The skiorama provides its patrons with an experience that is completely incongruous with the world in which it takes place, and for this reason the experience can tell the "skier" nothing about his or her environment just as Portmeirion can tell us nothing about Wales. What exactly is wrong with the hyperreal experience, if indeed it is problematic at all? As Borgmann points out, it is quite possible that the skiorama experience is more environmentally friendly than the "real" thing — there is no driving for hours to the nearest slopes, no need for artificial snow-making, trail grooming etc. The heart of the problem with hyperreal experiences and phenomenon lies in the danger that we are in, in this post-modern era, of losing all sense of the veridical, and the value of the authentic. The philosophical challenge, according to Borgmann is to: circumscribe this sense of reality in a way clear and precise enough to counter the suspicion of deconstructive postmodernism that advocates of a substantial reality are wistful and sentimental at best, and patriarchal and fascist at worst. To fix our attention on a particular instance, how do we explicate the difference between a mountain in the Northern Rockies, covered with natural snow, and a skiorama in Los Angeles? (38). Within the context of ecological restoration, this problem is of some gravity when one considers that there is already quite some debate over the question of what to restore ecosystems to. For if there is no reality, then it would seem that we are free to (re)construct ecosystems in our own image, as Cronon might say, not unlike the way we have constructed the notion of wilderness. The fact, then, that we can create a rural Italian village in the middle of the Welsh countryside is reason enough to do so, despite the fact that it has absolutely no continuity with the landscape in which it is found. Worse than this, it can tell us nothing about the countryside 106 surrounding it, nor can it tell us anything about Wales, its culture nor its history. Let us turn now to a more threatening example of the hyperreal. In their article, "Colonising the Imagination: Disney's Wilderness Lodge", Jennifer Cypher and Eric Higgs apply Borgmann's notion of the hyperreal to the Walt Disney version of an environmental restoration, which is in fact not a restoration at all, but a recreation of an American ideal in the middle of the Floridian swamplands. Cypher and Higgs explore the Wilderness Lodge from this side of the postmodern divide, only to discover that the Lodge bears no more resemblance to the real thing than the Disney film Pocahontas bears resemblance to the life of the historical figure upon which the film is based. The Wilderness Lodge provides its consumers with "wilderness without dirt or danger" (Cypher and Higgs 2). Make no mistake, however, this is not a true wilderness experience: this is not eco-tourism for the rugged individual, because the Lodge itself is the equivalent of a four-star hotel. Beware the irony of Disney's Wilderness Lodge - for the metamorphosis of the emasculated urban man into the rugged individual he was meant to be is about as likely to occur when eating Ranch dressing on a salad of delicate field greens as it is here. Cypher and Higgs call all attempts to manufacture (and sell) experience the "colonisation of the imagination" (4). An important part of Disney's hyperreal environments are not only that they skew reality, as does Portmeirion but like the skiorama, they also commodity these experiences. That is why it was claimed previously that Portmeirion is a benign example of the hyperreal. With the startling figure of over thirty million visitors to Disney World every year, the corporation can be seen to have a far-reaching cultural and economic influence (Cypher and Higgs 9). Just what is it that Disney have done, then, to create a hyperreal experience for their hungry consumers? Disney has worked a miracle of sorts, creating a forest that you would swear belonged in the North Western United States in the midst of a swamp, and nestled in these swamp-woods is a most incredible "mythical super-lodge" (Cypher and Higgs 20) that surpasses any National Park Lodge in existence elsewhere and comes complete with a mechanical geyser that is reminiscent, at 107 least in spirit, of the recreated volcano at Worlitz. Cypher's description of the Lodge and its surroundings reveal the fantasy Disney have attempted to create, sell and promote: The centre meridian is planted with low scrub pine bushes and small redwood trees supported by unobtrusive guy-wires .... [There are] beds of wildflowers in neat borders the wooden doors stand permanently open, and the double layer of glass sliding doors opens to let you into the cool, air conditioned lobby of the Lodge .... At the far end of the lobby is a fireplace, its chimney nine stories of stratified rock formations. Two totem poles face each other from across the lobby, each reaching almost to the ceiling, decorated with carved and painted images familiar to those who have seen the carving of the Native people of North America's Northwest coast [however], the majority of what looks like wood and stone is actually moulded, coloured and sometimes handpainted concrete .... The geyser itself is a highly complex, computerised water-theatre .... Nothing is what it seems to be at first glance, or upon closer examination (13). By attempting to recreate not one particular national park lodge, but by taking the inspiration for the Wilderness Lodge from many different lodges and by mimicking certain elements from each to form a themed experience, "direct comparison is replaced by vague impressions, distant experiences and the imagination" (Cypher and Higgs 16). Only someone quite naive would actually believe that the hyperreal was actually the real. How could one fail to be struck by the incongruities of a north- western United States wilderness lodge that is situated in a southern swamp? If the incongruities and ironies of the Lodge are plain, what accounts for the success of the hyperreal experience that Disney presents us with? The key is that the Lodge, like all Disney commodified experiences, attempts to improve upon reality. A college graduate just returned from her first trip to Europe said this of the experience: I didn't like Europe as much as I liked Disney World. At Disney World all the countries are much closer together, and they show you just the best of each country. Europe is more boring. People talk strange languages and things are dirty. Sometimes you don't see anything interesting in Europe for days, but at Disney World something different happens all the time, and people are happy. It's much more fun. It's well designed (Papanek 137). Another student returning from Europe said this: "What do you do when the real place looks like a copy of the place where it's fake?" (Papanek 137). In these two quotes are crystallised the 108 problems with hyperreal experiences: they succeed in making the real seem fake by attempting to improve upon or emend the real, thereby rendering the real fatuous. It is interesting to note that this is the same consequence we observed when the wilderness is worshipped: the real, everyday experiences we have become uninspiring, and we lose our ability to be stimulated by them. G.K. Chesterton also laments the passing of our sense of amazement and wonder at the real world in which we live. In his essay, "The Logic of Elfland" he argues that the reason we so love fairy tales is that they restore the wonder and amazement at the world we felt as very young children: A child of seven is excited by being told that Tommy opened a door and saw a dragon. But a child of three is excited by being told that Tommy opened a door .... Babies like realistic tales because they find them romantic.... [Fairy] tales say that apples were golden only to refresh the forgotten moment when we found that they were green. They make rivers run with wine only to make us remember, for one wild moment, that they run with water (Chesterton 338). Chesterton's contention is that when we remember that real life, not fantasies, is what is truly romantic, we come alive. So experiences like the Disney experience, which we come to depend on for excitement and amazement only serve to deaden us, and to make us forget the origins not only of our wonder at things, but of the things themselves. Despite the fact that the hyperreal experience that the Wilderness Lodge provides might serve some good. i.e. to increase some people's awareness of nature and their sensitise them to the interests of others, or to reduce the impact of tourism in the real National Parks, there remains a danger. Reality is replaced with hyperreality, and eventually one can foresee a time when the hyperreal will no longer hold its romantic appeal, so accustomed to its illusions we may grow, so that even more fantastic and fictitious experiences will need to be manufactured. In addition we may come to mistake their illusion for reality, as the young students describing their Disney experiences seem to do. The real danger of the hyperreal is that we may one day decide to recreate the National Parks in the image of Walt Disney. 109 In the cult of wilderness, the quest for the "authentic experience" leads to the belief that wilderness is the paradigm instantiation of the natural, and in the hyperreal world, the quest for illusion leads to the belief that the hyperreal experience is an improvement upon reality. Both are equally inauthentic experiences which lead us to feel less and less responsibility for our actions in reality, as reality itself retreats and is forgotten. Like the drug addict, we need more and more of either the wilderness experience or the hyperreal to stimulate ourselves, until the altered state is all we care to know; thus we become divorced from the culture, nature and history that shaped us and from which our responsibilities and moral obligations are derived. Cypher and Higgs rightly fear, then, that the artificial will become the centre of moral value, and this fear is echoed when Papanek claims, "the culture of a country shapes its form and ... these forms eventually shape us" [my emphasis] (140). Thus, although we as a society are a product of our history and cultural backgrounds, we are reinventing ourselves through the perpetuation of hyperreal experiences. Louis Marin describes Disney's representation of reality as a "degenerate Utopia" which is ideologically changed into the form of a myth (Marin, as cited by Cypher and Higgs 24). The danger is that because the hyperreal is divorced from its physical, cultural, and/or historical context, the experience lacks depth. Thus, the hyperreality we create for ourselves is devoid of profundity, and cannot be sustaining. One might go so far as to say that the Wilderness Lodge is a Platonic endeavour, where the aim is to create the "mythic super-lodge" or the Form of the national park lodge. The end result, however, is the tightening of the bonds that keep us chained and staring at the shadows of reality flickering across the Cave wall, believing all the while that this reflection is the source. Kendal Walton's book, Mimesis as Make Believe provides us with an interesting perspective on hyperreality. Walton develops a theory of aesthetics for the representational arts in which he believes that, in experiencing art (going to a film, for example), we experience what he 110 calls quasi-emotions: therefore it is "fictional" that one is afraid of the axe-murderer in the horror film (Walton 243). Despite the fact that some aspects of his emotive theory are problematic, suppose for a moment that we can in fact experience things fictionally, and then let us use this supposition to help us examine the hyperreal experience. It is fictional that one is skiing when one is at the skiorama, and it is fictional that one is having a wilderness experience at Disney's Wilderness Lodge. The danger in the hyperreal experience is that we might be prone, if exposed too often to the hyperreal experience (especially because the hyperreal is supposed to improve upon, or enhance the real), to forget that it is fictional, and come to confuse the hyperreal with the real.3 2 To illustrate this point let us look at an episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation. In the relevant episode, a shy and incompetent engineer named Reg takes refuge from the world in the holodeck. The holodeck is the place where one can live out one's fantasies in computer generated holograms: this is goggle-free virtual reality - hyperreality gone wild. It can simulate just about anything, and is therefore the perfect place for a lonely engineer to act out his fantasies, which in this case involves dressing down fellow crew-members he finds intimidating, or just making friends with people he is too shy to get to know in reality. Eventually, his reclusive and fantastic behaviour is discovered by the ship's counsellor, and he is gradually weaned from this "anti-social" mode of behaviour. Reg's behaviour is regarded as unhealthy and misanthropic, and the message is quite clear: Reg's relationship with the holodeck is unwholesome — where others realise that its function is for recreation, Reg had come to depend on the computer for companionship and perhaps even his sanity. However, as Walton might say, his entire emotional life is fictional: it is fictional that he had friends, and it is fictional that he had the courage to tell off a superior officer. Reg, however, spends so much time on the holodeck that he actually came to believe that he was a confident, stable individual, and it was no longer necessary for him to Of course there can be no non-arbitrary way to draw the line between the real and the hyperreal, but we can certainly be aware of particular features that are hyperreal. I l l seek out relationships with humans because he had holograms. The problem, then, with hyperreality such as Disney's Wilderness Lodge is just as Cypher and Higgs suggest: hyperreal experiences eventually come to colonise the imagination, and will eventually lead us if not to depend, as Reg did, upon their fictions, at least to believe that their fictions are, in fact, veridical. What begins as a substitution for reality (albeit often a seductive substitution) comes to be perceived and valued as the norm. Thus, our behaviour, reflected in the type of experiences we seek out, eventually becomes divorced from the forces that shaped it. In the case of the Wilderness Lodge, Cypher and Higgs explain how this occurs: It is given mythical status, and becomes understood as something natural and common-sensical .... [The] stories that are retold at Disney World ... become the way reality is experienced, their narrative structures are repeated and participated in by the guests, in this way, "reality is changed into image", images are given equal values and by this sleight of hand fantasy and reality become interchangeable .... Through the use of hyperreality, reality is seemingly flexible, easily constructed by those with the right kind of imagination and the right amount of money .... Disney is able to present their version of things and call it reality, blurring the lines between the real and the hyperreal (24-25). This blurring of lines between the real and the hyperreal could not occur, however, if the hyperreal experience was not commodified and made appealing to consumers. This essential element of the Disney case explains why it is that they are so successfully affecting this transformation in human perceptions, and why Portmeirion as an example of hyperreality is benign by comparison. Another interesting fact about the Walt Disney corporation is that the fantasy worlds it creates are designed for consumption by the middle classes and not the rich elite that Cronon describes as being the consumers of wilderness experiences. Disney brings the "wild" to the ordinary folk at the cost of the "authenticity" of the experience. The Disney corporation uses its so-called wonderland not only to recreate and reinvent the ideologies they are meant to reflect, but also to perpetuate consumerism and the commodification of hyperreal experience. For this 112 reason, Cypher and Higgs call all attempts to manufacture experience the colonisation of the imagination. Therefore, in addition to the fact that the hyperreal experience is meant to improve upon reality, we can also credit the commodification of experience for the scale of its success. Robert Nozick's thought experiment about the experience machine is meant to reveal our intuitions about how we feel about manufactured experiences (Nozick 42-45). To do this, he asks the question of what else matters besides how our experiences feel from the inside. For our purposes, the question might be phrased in this way: what is wrong with the fact that the hyperreal experience is incongruous with the reality of the context in which it takes place? I have already argued that it lacks depth, but Nozick helps to explain why this is so, and his argument relies upon our own intuitions. He argues that the experience machine is not something that many people would plug into on a large scale for long periods of time. But in fact this is exactly how many people consume the experiences that Disney sells. "What does matter to us in addition to our experiences?" asks Nozick (43). We can discover at least in a general sense the answer to this question by engaging in the experience machine thought experiment in which we hook up to machines which, in essence, live our lives for us. Nozick argues, I think rightly, that this idea of a machine living our lives for us, or transforming us into the people we want to be, is repugnant to us because "what we desire is to live (an active verb) ourselves, in contact with reality" (45). Thus, any experience which is packaged and sold to us, i.e. commodified, or is "lived for us" in any sense, dislocates us from reality. This helps to explain why such experiences can only be shallow and "limit us to a man-made reality, to a world no deeper or more important than that which people can construct" (Nozick 43). Thus, the moral danger here is that because, as was already shown, it is feared that the hyperreal will eventually become the centre of moral value, this will mean that only those things that are human-made, i.e. are artefacts, will have value. The genuine and the natural lose not only their romantic qualities, but also their value. As we have already noted, the wilderness experience which the eco-tourists might seek out is equally inauthentic, and has recently become commodified through eco-tourism. We can 113 see what the cult of wilderness and hyperreality have in common, then: they are both romantic myth. In the former, the quest for the authentic experience leads to the belief that wilderness is authentic nature, and in the latter the quest for illusion leads to the belief that the hyperreal experience is, at first, an improvement on the real thing, and eventually may lead to the belief that it is the standard against which reality is measured. Both are equally inauthentic experiences to the degree that they are artefacts of human attempts to create a paradise on earth, and both render everyday life prosaic. To the extent that they succeed in making us feel that somehow our backyards are commonplace and uninspiring, they also make us feel less and less responsible for our humdrum way of life: "as we slide from the real to the less real and hyperreal, our moral condition is undergoing a crucial change" (Borgmann 40). As the real becomes more and more banal, and the need seek out hyperreal experiences increases, we lose the ability to care for those things that have a continuity with the terrain of everyday life. If what is genuinely of value lies outside the realm of everyday life, then we come to feel less and less responsibility for the world, which is the product of human history and natural forces combined. The belief that we can flee into a mythical wilderness (Cronon 90) or hyperreality is itself a myth. As Borgmann says, "when the natural/artificial distinction is replaced by the real/hyperreal distinction, it is clear that the problem with consumption is not its sweet recklessness but its debilitating mindlessness" (41). Thus, just as Cronon claims that the belief that wilderness is more authentic than urbanity leads to the devaluation of humble places and experiences, so too does the commodification of the hyperreal experience. Although these two "cults" take different paths, they both lead us to the belief that the everyday reality we inhabit is an insipid and spurious place. Returning to Katz As hyperreal experiences such as the Wilderness Lodge change what people understand wilderness or nature to be, this in turn shapes their views of nature, leading them to believe that the real thing is mundane, boring and valueless. It is this replacement of real nature with fake nature that Elliot and Katz have feared the most. Indeed, they are more than justified in believing 114 this colonisation of the imagination, as Cypher and Higgs would say, to be a powerful force in our consumerist society. But does restoration ecology fit into this consumerist, hyperreal paradigm? Katz could be describing the Wilderness Lodge when he says: We are all impressed by the power and breadth of human technological achievements. Why is it not possible to extend this power further, until we control, manipulate, and dominate the entire natural universe? This is the illusion that the restoration of nature presents to us. But it is only an illusion. Once we dominate nature, once we restore and redesign nature for our own purposes, then we have destroyed nature - we have created an artifactual reality, in a sense, a false reality, which merely provides us the pleasant illusory appearance of the natural environment (Katz 1992, 240). But the Wilderness Lodge is a far cry from the restoration of the Musqueam Creek Watershed. In fact, it does not count as a true restoration at all, for there never was a North Western forest in the Floridian swamplands. The picture that Katz paints of restoration ecology is far closer to that of the hyperreal project than it is to the local restoration projects that pepper the North American landscape. Thus, although Katz's, and Elliot's fear that the human artefact will replace the real and the natural is certainly valid, we have seen that the philosophical motivations which result in the creation of the hyperreal and the perpetuation of illusion are far more likely to occur in the context of commodified nature than they are in the context of local restoration projects like that of the Musqueam Creek Committee. It is Disney, and not the likes of the M C C that should be the target of Katz's criticism. It also seems evident from Katz's writing that he is a subject of the cult of the wilderness. "The Big Lie" is full of reifications of the nature/culture dualism which has so cruelly served to separate us from nature in the past, as which is evident in the cult of the wilderness. The belief that the human influence on nature is destructive is pervasive in his writing. Remarks such as, "The 'natural' then is a term we use to designate objects and processes that exist as far as possible from human manipulation and control"(Katz 1992, 239) and "Nature is not permitted to be free, to pursue its own independent course of development" (Katz 1992, 240) indicate his belief that 115 human intervention is tantamount to human domination of nature, and that human intervention in nature can never be considered natural. His belief that nature has an independent course of development was also shown earlier to be part of the doctrine of the cult of wilderness. What is perhaps the most revealing remark Katz makes, which should convince us that he subscribes to the cult of the wilderness and all that it entails, is this: "The attempt to redesign, recreate, and restore natural areas and objects is a radical intervention in natural processes" (Katz 1992, 239). Here, his failure to differentiate between redesigning and restoring nature is a failure to differentiate between the activities of Disney and those of the M C C . If he can equate these two activities with one another, and the ethical worth of the endeavours of Disney and the M C C , than surely he believes that only the pristine wilderness has value, for he seems to admit to no degree of intervention in nature being acceptable, despite the fact that he claims that he does33. So although Katz is quite right to react with moral indignation to what I have described as the hyperreal, he fails to see that his own position as a member of the cult of wilderness is equally problematic. The Garden Ethic We need a new paradigm for our relations with nature that overcomes, or transcends the problems that arise when we hold up the wilderness as the paradigm instantiation of nature, and the problems that arise from trying to redesign and improve on nature, especially when the product of such efforts are commodified. I shall suggest that it is within the garden, not in the wilderness nor in hyperreality that we can learn to live both in harmony with the natural world, and within the natural world. It will become evident that the restoration of the Musqueam 3 3 Katz admits that to equate a toxic waste dump with a compost heap of organic material is to obscure important distinctions between what is unnatural and natural (Katz 1992, 239), and yet he fails to make that very important distinction when it comes to restoration. His failure to distinguish between the hyperreal project which is redesigning nature, and the restoration project which restores nature is the same as the failure to distinguish between the toxic waste dump and the compost heap. 116 Watershed is a restoration project which demonstrates that restoration can be practised in such a way that more than just the ecosystem is restored ~ humans too can be restored to nature. Not all of us have had a wilderness experience, nor have we all been to Disneyland. It is more likely, however, that if one wanted to have "an experience", one would opt to go to either of these two places over one's own back garden. Yet it is here that we may have the most profound experiences, as anyone who has had a garden will attest. My own experiments with Miracle-Gro garden fertiliser excited and inspired (at eight feet high my sunflowers towered over the landscape), but my inability to control aphids and drought made an equally impressive impact. In time, one comes to appreciate the fact that one cannot have complete control over one's garden. No sooner does one "Miracle-Gro" eight-foot sunflowers than the wind and rain topple them. No sooner does one thin out the forget-me-nots than the weeds move in to take advantage of the space you have created. No sooner does one finish mowing the lawn than it needs cutting again. The good gardener soon realises that no matter how much she tries, she will never be able to do exactly as she pleases in the garden « it doesn't matter how many chemicals she sprays, how many support rods she ties, or how much she sings to the plants — not everything is subject to the human will. One soon gains a healthy respect for nature, and whether one understands them or not, the rules by which nature plays can seldom be altered or overcome. This is not to say, however, that I could not do some serious damage to my garden if I so wished. I could leach the soil of nutrients, erode the topsoil, or even pave over the whole thing with concrete, lay down some astro-turf and strategically arrange a few garden gnomes. This, however, can hardly be considered gardening. It is in the garden that we can learn about our place in nature: it has many lessons to teach us, as Michael Pollan well knows3 4. Pollan's book 3 4 Of course, the garden metaphor has its cultural limitations. It would not serve as a heuristic metaphor for the world's few remaining hunter-gatherer peoples, for example. In his paper, "Linear Destiny and Geometric Fate", Emilio Mordini describes the limitations of metaphor: Metaphors are used to describe better, with more nuances, what we mean, but they often serve two masters. Any metaphor conceals as much as it reveals, masks as well as unveils. When I say: "Caesar was a lion" I probably intend to hint at his 117 Second Nature chronicles his experiences as a novice gardener in the Connecticut back country as he attempts to establish some semblance of a garden from the relative wilderness that is his (large) backyard. Not only does he attempt to describe the physical goings on in his garden, he chronicles his own personal transformation from an urbanite who was divorced from nature, to one who listens to, and grows to feel a part of the natural. This is no easy feat, and his battle with groundhogs and a hurricane, although perhaps the most frustrating experiences he has, are also the ones that teach him the most about humans in nature. Pollan eventually puts forth the notion of a garden ethic which can, i f not replace the wilderness ethic, compliment it and restore us to nature. A garden ethic is offensive to some for its rather frank anthropocentrism, says Pollan, but, he argues, every one of our various metaphors for nature ~ wilderness, ecosystem, Gaia, etc., is already a kind of garden, "an indissoluble mix of our culture and whatever it is that is really out there" (Pollan 227). This is similar to Cronon's argument that we created wilderness in our own image — of course we cannot escape the fact that paradigms are of our own construction. We should not evaluate their worth on their relative "naturalness", but rather evaluate them for what they can teach us about how to live in nature. As Lele and Norgaard argue, using naturalness as both means and end forjudging worth creates tautologies, and uninteresting ones at that (355). Thus, Pollan argues that a Garden Ethic is ideal, "for the garden is a place with long experience of questions having to do with man in nature" (225). It is in the garden that we at once explore our might (e.g. Miracle-Gro) and are humbled by nature (e.g. aphids or drought). It is here that we restore our wonder at the greenness of apples, or at the water in the riverbed. And although some lament what might be considered to be the end of the wilderness paradigm, Pollan does not: courage, however I cannot avoid suggesting other qualities that our culture attributes to lions (ferocity, violence, regality, capacity to inspire fear and respect). Moreover if the listener belongs to another culture, for instance Masai culture, chances are that she perceives something rather different from what I intended to The only thing that is really in danger of ending is a romantic, pantheistic idea of nature that we invented in the first place; one whose passing might well turn out to be a blessing in disguise. Useful as it has been in helping us protect the sacred 8 percent [of wild America] it nevertheless has failed to prevent us from doing a great deal of damage to the remaining 92 percent. This old idea may have taught us how to worship nature, but it did not tell us how to live with her. It told us more than we needed to know about virginity and rape, and almost nothing about marriage (Pollan 224). It is that the wilderness ethic is often silent and unhelpful that many find so problematic. And we can say the same of the hyperreality scenario — the hyperreal tells us nothing about reality, let alone how we ought to behave in it. And yet, more often than not, it is the wilderness and the hyperreal experiences which we seek out, and through which we receive our information about the natural world: it is likely that the garden is not stimulating enough to entice us to have experiences there, as Cronon and Borgmann pointed out when they said the consequence of embracing the wild or the hyperreal is to render one's own backyard mundane and uninteresting. Yet it is precisely here that we can learn the most about "marriage", or how to forge a long-term relationship with nature. An essential element of any marriage is the ability to compromise. In the garden we learn to compromise, and to respect the limitations of the natural with the aim of creating something sustainable. Just as compromise and respect for the other is necessary if a marriage is to last a lifetime as intended, for us to live sustainabley we need to learn how to compromise with, and gain respect for, nature. We will not be able to do so if we continue to honour only the exotic. As Cronon says, "we need to discover a common middle ground in which all of these things, from the city to the wilderness, can somehow be encompassed in the word "home" (Cronon 89). Embracing a garden ethic does not mean we have to stop honouring wildness, which can be found, if looked for, in any place, but rather we have to stop worshipping wilderness. Looking communicate. Perhaps she may appreciate the central idea of bravery, but other 119 for the wild in a sidewalk crack, or in our gardens, takes reflection and self-awareness. This type of self-awareness is found in our backyards, in our homes, in the garden, for it means that instead of distancing ourselves from what is familiar, we embrace it and feel responsible for it. The only way to avoid the sense of moral divorce from reality which Cronon and Borgmann both warn of is to consider every instance of our use of nature, and not just consider acts of non-use. What we learn in the garden extends far beyond the scope of our backyards, to our relationships with other organisms and groups of organisms in our communities and beyond. Of course, the term garden is a generic one and there are many different kinds of gardens, some with rich historical and cultural significance. Thus, despite the cultural limitations of the metaphor, the garden as a metaphor provides a wealth of contexts in which it can be explored. Even within the metaphor, then, there is no one paradigm for human relations with nature. Contrast the formal gardens of Versailles, for example, with le jardin sauvage, or contrast the formal Japanese garden with the English cottage garden. The gardens at Versailles were built during the reign of Louis XIV, the Sun King, during the Renaissance, and reflect the emphasis on rationality, symmetry and balance that pervaded the era's scholarship. The English cottage garden, on the other hand, appears more natural, however, and seems lush and overgrown when compared to Versailles. Let it be noted, however, that both gardens require much time and effort to be made on the part of the gardener, and thus, although one may look as though it is closer to a state of nature than the other, appearance could deceive the casual observer into thinking that one requires much more human intervention than the other. The garden metaphor is a rich one and deserves more exploration than can be made here, but it should be noted that there are as many ways of conceptualising human relations with nature as there are gardens, but that the garden qualities involved in the image are likely to be misperceived (Mordini). 120 metaphor does not exhaust all such possibilities. It is important, then to remember that it is just a metaphor, and therefore has its limitations. Restoration ecology is gardening on a community level. Unlike Katz and Elliot, who view restoration only as a technological fix, Higgs believes that "restoration may serve as a way of escaping the culture of technology and linking culture with nature, but only if we regard it as more than a mere technological practice" (Higgs 1991, 98). The reason for this is that if we view restoration as a mere technological practice, it tends to focus our attention on the product of restoration rather than the process. But, as William Jordan argues, it is in the process that we find ourselves transformed: I am not talking about restoration merely as a technology, but as a significant, expressive act. I see in the healing act of restoration not a technological solution to environmental problems, but a paradigm for a mutually beneficial relationship with nature - an act of respect that balances the act of assertion and opens up the possibility of a reciprocal and truly ecological relationship with nature (qtd. in Higgs 1991, 102). What we might say typifies the garden ethic as a paradigm for relations with the natural world is the willingness to respect nature, and to be willing to alter our pattern of use of a resource, if we find that our use is having a negative impact on nature. Fundamental to this is the acknowledgement that although we cannot survive without using nature instrumentally to some degree, this does not necessarily entail any disrespect. This attitude was exemplified by Participant 2, as we have already seen in a previous chapter, when he said that the M C C were taking things slowly with the restoration of the Musqueam Watershed in order to have time to observe the impact of their actions on the ecosystem. The M C C is willing to listen to what the ecosystem is telling them about the impact of their actions, and to alter their behaviour, if that is required, in order to restore the Watershed to a level of ecosystemic functioning that it once had. Not only can restoration restore ecosystems, then, but it can also restore humans to the natural world, thereby breaking down the old nature/culture dualism, or the real/hyperreal 121 dualism. Yet its power does not stop there. Karen Holland describes the power of restoration not only to restore us as humans to nature, but also to restore that sense of inspiration about the natural world that G.K. Chesterton, Borgmann and Cronon lament. In her article, "Restoration Rituals: Transforming Workday Tasks Into Inspiration Rites", Holland opens with a description of a wedding between two lay restorationists which takes place at the site of the restoration of an oak grove (Holland 121). Holland describes the wedding as "the human restoration community and a society [coming] together with the ecological community in a harmonious union" (Holland 121). Admittedly, this is what Holland and most people call a rare occurrence. Yet it is indicative of the potential that is inherent in the practice of restoration to repair through ritual the fractured relationship that exists between humans and the ecosystems in which they live. Some rituals, says Holland, are born out of necessity. For example, in one project it is a seasonal ritual to demonstrate the correct way to use the tools of restoration, such as a rake to gather seeds. During this ritual, everyone present takes the opportunity to introduce themselves and to relay an interesting anecdote (122). Yet other rituals are more inspirational and are more nourishing. For, as Holland points out, we can find rituals everywhere, even in shopping malls. The article goes on to describe various rituals, ranging from the theatrical to The Illinois Rivers Project Student Congress which involves more than 400 students. What is central to each is the inspirational element, the element of seduction and the transformation which subsequently occurs with the "understanding that we are ecosystemic citizens" (Holland 125). Central to the restoration rituals, too, is the sense of community which the rituals foster: We talk often about how doing restoration reconnects us with nature. I suppose we are, in a sense, rediscovering what we so often protect ourselves from with concrete and walls and predictable shrubbery. I believe what we are really reconnecting with is each other. We need the companionship, co-operation, and caring of a community to assist us in our restoration work. And we need traditions and accompanying rituals to define relationships within the community (Holland 125). 122 Thus it is clear that restoration is perhaps one of the ideal situations in which humans can reconsider and redefine their relationships with the natural world, and indeed, restore themselves to the natural. And it seems that a key element in this process of restoring humans to the natural world is the process of community building, where relationships between humans, and between humans and organisms are forged to form a sense of citizenry which includes all the organisms in a given ecological community. Indeed, the SER recommends that restoration practices be evaluated not only on their ecological soundness, which includes factors such as biodiversity, functioning, ability to accommodate normal disturbances etc., but also on the basis of the degree to which a restoration programs "engage the human community and enhances its relationship with the larger biotic community" (SER 2). In addition, the SER recognizes humans as an integral part of ecosystems and emphasizes that one of the greatest benefits of restoration is its value as an occasion for education and raising the awareness of the value of what is being restored. For this reason, evaluations should take into account the extent to which restoration programs have contributed to public education as a way of developing a satisfying relationship between the human and biotic communities (SER 2). This is what we hope for with a garden ethic where we acknowledge our power of the natural world, and the fact that it is not absolute, but at the same time acknowledge that ecosystems and their constituents deserve respect as part of the community in which we must live sustainabley. Although the garden ethic as I have here described it is by no means exhaustively described or worked out, we can see its potential for improving human relations with nature so that they are more biocentric and sustainable, as manifested in the practice of good ecological restoration. The practice of restoration itself does not necessarily have to be practised under what we have termed the Garden Ethic. It could in fact be practised in such a way as to result in a commodity, something hyperreal. I imagine that more often than not restoration is done in such a way as to ask not "How can humans improve their relationship with the natural world" but rather, 123 "How can I improve my corporate image?" or "How can I make a profit from this land?"35. The answers to these questions results in hyperreal commodities. It is restoration that is practised with the aim not of improving the welfare of the ecosystem's constituents, but rather with the aim of commodification, that results in morally unacceptable restoration; for it is unlikely that a financially driven corporation would uphold the principles outlined in the previous chapter. But good ecological restoration, as described in the previous chapter, where the principles of equal consideration, welfare and equitable participation are upheld, can be seen as a manifestation of the Garden Ethic. For good ecological restoration forces a consideration of the well-being of other humans and non-human organisms. And it is precisely through this consideration that we champion the Garden Ethic and thereby restore ourselves to nature. 3 5 It is interesting to note that on the face of it, the pump used to augment the flow of the Musqueam and Cutthroat Creeks is likely similar to the pump used to create the clock-work geyser at the Wilderness Lodge. However, the pump used in the former is used to benefit the ecosystem, and in the latter, it is a means to attract and thrill paying holiday makers. 124 Works Cited Beauchamp, T. and J. Childress. Principles of Biomedical Ethics. New York: Oxford University Press, 1979. Borgmann, Albert. "The Nature of Reality and the Reality of Nature." Reinventing Nature? Responses to Postmodern Deconstruction. Ed. Michael E. Soule and Gary Lease. Washington: Island Press, 1995: 33-45. Callicot, J. Baird. "Introduction." In Environmental Philosophy: From Animal Rights to Radical Ecology. Eds. Michael Zimmerman et al. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice- Hall Inc., 1993. Canadian Wildlife Service, Environment Canada, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Fraser Basin Management Program, and Forest Renewal BC. Community Stewardship: A Guide to Establishing Your Own Group. Chesterton, G.K. "The Logic of Elfland " In Man and His World. Canada: The Bryant Press Limited, 1961: 333-39. Clark, W. and R. Munn. Sustainable Development of the Biosphere. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 1986. Clark, John. "Introduction." In Environmental Philosophy: From Animal Rights to Radical Ecology. Ed. Michael Zimmerman et al. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall Inc., 1993: 345-53. Cowell, Mark. "Ecological Restoration and Environmental Ethics." In Environmental Ethics 15 (1993): 19-30. Cronon, William. "The Trouble with Wilderness; or, Getting Back to the Wrong Nature." In Uncommon Ground: Toward Reinventing Nature. Ed. William Cronon. New York: W.W. Norton and Company, Inc., 1995: 69-90. Cypher, Jennifer and Eric Higgs. "Colonizing the Imagination: Disney's Wilderness Lodge." Unpublished ms., 1996. Daniels, Norman. "Wide Reflective Equilibrium in Practice." In Sumner, L.W. and Joseph Boyle, eds. Philosophical Perspectives on bioethics. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1996. De George, Richard. "The Environment, Rights and Future Generations." In Ethics and Problems of the 21 s t Century. Eds. K .E . Goodpaster and K . M . Sayre. Notre Dame: Notre Dame Press, 1979: 93-105. Department of Fisheries and Oceans, Canada. The Aboriginal Fisheries Strategy: Answers to Your Questions. February 1993. 125 Department of Fisheries and Oceans, Canada. Policy for the Management of Fish Habitat. Ottawa. Presented to Parliament by the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans October 7, 1986. Dubos, Rene. "The Wilderness Experience." In People, Penguins and Plastic Trees. Eds. Donald Van De Veer and Christine Pierce. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth Publishing Company, 1986: 142-50. Elliot, Robert. 'Taking Nature." In Inquiry 25 (1982): 81-93. Fausch, K . D . Management of Habitat in Musqueam Creek for Resident and Anadromous Salmonids. Unpublished ms., 1990. Fish Habitat Management Branch, DFO. Fish Habitat Management Policy: Summary. Communication Directorate, DFO, 1990. Fisheries and Oceans Canada. West Coast Fisheries: Changing Times. Cat. No. Fs 23-240/1993E. Fox, Warwick. "A Critical Overview of Environmental Ethics." In World Futures 46 (1996): 1-21. Greater Vancouver Regional District. Pacific Spirit Regional Park: Management Plan. Greater Vancouver Regional District, November 1991. Gunn, Alastair. "The Restoration of Species and Natural Environments." In Environmental Ethics 13 (1991): 291-310. Henderson, Bill . The Virtual Law Office: Sparrow v. The Queen [1990 1 S C R . 1075], Online. August 22, 1997. Available: http://www.bloorstreet.eom/200block/rsparrow.htm#l Higgs, Eric. "What is Good Ecological Restoration?" In Conservation Biology 10.5 (1996): 1-12. Higgs, Eric. " A Quantity of Engaging Work to Be Done." In Restoration and Management Notes 9.2 (1991): 97-104. Holland, Karen. "Restoration Rituals: Transforming Workday Tasks Into Inspirational Rites." In Restoration and Management Notes 12.2 (1994): 121-25. Jordan, William. "The Ghosts in the Forest." In Restoration and Management Notes 11.1 (1993): 3-4. Katz, Eric. "Organism, Community, and the 'Substitution' Problem." In Environmental Ethics 7 (1985): 241-256. Katz, Eric. "The Ethical Significance of Human Intervention in Nature." In Restoration and Management Notes 9.2 (1991): 90-96. 126 Katz, Eric. "The Big Lie: Human Restoration of Nature." In Research in Philosophy and Technology 12 (1992): 231-41. Kirkby, Gareth. "The Streamkeepers." In Georgia Straight. Vancouver, 29 May - 5 June, 1997. Lele, S. and R. Norgaard. "Sustainability and the Scientist's Burden." In Conservation Biology 10.2 (1996): 354-56. Leopold, Aldo. A Sand County Almanac With Other Essays On Conservation From Round River. New York: Oxford UP, 1966. Light, Andrew. "Hegemony and Democracy: How Politics in Restoration Informs the Politics of Restoration." In Restoration and Management Notes 12.2 (1994): 140-144. Light, Andrew and Eric Higgs. "The Politics of Ecological Restoration." In Environmental Ethics 18 (1996): 227-47. McDonald, M . , J.T. Stevenson, and W. Cragg. Finding a Balance of Values: An Ethical Assessment of Ontario Hydro's Demand /Supply Plan. Report to the Aboriginal Research Coalition of Ontario. Unpublished ms., filed with the Ontario Environmental Assessment Board by the Aboriginal Coalition of Ontario. November 7, 1992. Meyerowitz, Robert. "Alaska's Wilderness Woman: On the Hunt for a Lover." Marie Claire. U K Edition (March 1988): 16-22. Mordini, E. "Linear Destiny and Geometric Fate." In Genetic Information: Acquisition. Access and Control. Eds. Alison Thompson and Ruth Chadwick. New York: Plenum Publishing Corporation. Forthcoming. Musqueam Creek Committee. Musqueam Creek update: Newsletter of the Musqueam Creek Committee and the M E S H Society. Spring 1997. Musqueam Creek Committee. "Musqueam Watershed Committee Mission Statement" (unpublished document, n.d.). Nagel, Thomas. "What is it Like to be a Bat?" In Mortal Questions. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 183: 165-80. Newton, L . and Catherine Dillingham. Watersheds: Classic Cases in Environmental Ethics. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth, Inc., 1994. Northcote, T.G. and G. F. Hartman. 'The Biology and Significance of Stream Trout Populations (Salmon spp.) Living Above and Below Waterfalls." In Pol. Arch. Hydrobiology 35 (1988): 409- 42. Nozick, Robert. Anarchy. State and Utopia. Oxford: Basil Blackwell, 1974: 42-45. 127 Page, Nick. "Musqueam Creek Restoration Plan." Diss., Landscape Architecture, University of British Columbia, April 1993. Papanek, V. The Green Imperative: Ecology and Ethics in Design and Architecture. London: Thames and Hudson, 1995. Participant 1. Personal Interview, December 1996. Participant 2. Personal Interview, December 1996. Participant3. E-mail to Author, October 4, 1997. Participant 3. Personal Interview, March 1997. Participant 4. Personal Interview, March 1997. Participant 5. Personal Interview, March 1997. Participant 6. Personal Interview, March 1997. Participant 7. Personal Interview, March 1997. Parker, Mike and Paul Whitfield. Wales: The Rough Guide. London, 1994. Perry, Johnathan. "Greening Corporate Environments: Authorship and Politics in Restoration." In Restoration and Management Notes 12.2 (1994): 145-147. Pollan, Michael. Second Nature: A Gardener's Education. New York: Dell Bantam Doubleday Publishing Group Inc., 1991. Pollock, Sarah. "A Time to Mend." In Sierra (September/October 1988): 51-55). Scherer, Donald. "Evolution, Human Living, and the Practice of Ecological Restoration." Environmental Ethics 17 (1995): 359-380. Siemens, A . H . Lower Fraser Valley: Evolution of a Cultural Landscape. Vancouver: Tantalus Research, 1968. Singer, Peter. "Not for Humans Only: The Place of Non-Humans in Environmental Issues." Ethics and Problems of the 21 s t Century. Eds. K .E . Goodpaster and K . M . Sayre. Notre Dame: Notre Dame Press, 1979: 191-206. Society for Ecological Restoration. "Ecological Restoration". Online, last updated 5 May 1997. Available: http://nabalu.flas.ufl.edu/ser/definitions.html Stevens, William K. Miracle Under the Oaks: The Revival of Nature in America. New York: Pocket Books, 1995. 128 Sumner, L.W. and Joseph Boyle, eds. Philosophical Perspectives on Bioethics. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1996. Taylor, Paul. Respect for Nature: A Theory of Environmental Ethics. Princeton: Princeton UP, 1986. Tera Environmental Consultants. Drainage and Fish Study of the Musqueam Creek System. Unpublished ms., Vancouver, 1981. Thacker, Christopher. The Wilderness Pleases: The Origins of Romanticism. London: Croom Helm, 1983. Walton, Kendall. Mimesis as Make-Believe: On the Foundations of the Representational Arts. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1990. Wilkie, T. "Ethical Controversies: the role of the Media." Presented at Science Friction, Monday 16 March, 1998 at The Royal Society, London, U K . Organized by the Progress Educational Trust and Sponsored by the Wellcome Trust. Westra, Laura. An Environmental Proposal for Ethics: The Principle of Integrity. Maryland: Rowman and Littlefield, 1994. Whitbeck, Caroline. "Ethics as Design: Doing Justice to Moral Problems." In The Hastings Center Report 26.3 (May 1996): 9. Zimmerman M . "General Introduction." In Environmental Philosophy: From Animal Rights to Radical Ecology. Eds. Michael Zimmerman et al. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall Inc., 1993 129 Selected Bibliography Brunk, Conrad G. "Professionalism and Responsibility in the Technological Society." Professional Ethics. 1985: 4-24. Buell, Lawrence. The Environmental Imagination: Thoreau. Nature Writing, and the Formation of American Culture. Cambridge: Belknap-Harvard UP, 1995. Callicott, J. Bairdf, "The Value of Ecosystem Health." In Environmental Values 4:4 (1995): 345-362.' City of Vancouver Parks Board et al. Musqueam Creek Cutthroat Creek and their Fish. Environmental Policies of the Society for Ecological Restoration," & "Project Policies of the Society for Ecological Restoration." Document URL: http: //nabalu. flas. ufl. edu/ser/EnvironmentalPolicies. html Frenay, Robert. "Biorealism: Reading Nature's Blueprints." In Audubon 97.5 (1995): 70-79, 104-106. Katz, Eric. "The Problem of Ecological Restoration." Environmental Ethics 18 (1996): 222-224. Longino, Helen. Science as Social Knowledge: Values and Objectivity in Scientific Inquiry. Princeton: Princeton UP, 1990. Nabhan, Gary P. "Cultural Parallax in Viewing North American Habitats." Reinventing Nature? Responses to Postmodern Deconstruction. Ed. Michael Soule and Gary Lease. Washington: Island Press, 1995. Oelschlaeger, Max. The Idea of Wilderness: From Prehistory to the Age of Ecology. New Haven: Yale UP, 1991. Regier, Henry. "The Notion of Natural and Cultural Integrity." Ecological Integrity and the Management of Ecosystems. Ed. Stephen Woodley et al. Ottawa: St. Lucie Press, 1993. Russow, Lilly-Marlene. "Why do Species Matter?" In People. Penguins and Plastic Trees. Ed. Donald Van De Veer and Christine Pierce. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth Publishing Company, 1986. Spence, Mark David. "Crown of the Continent, Backbone of the World: The American Wilderness Ideal and Blackfeet Exclusion from Glacier National Park." In Environmental History 1.3 (1996): 29-49. Wright, Will. Wild Knowledge: Science. Language, and Social Life in a Fragile Environment. Minnea 130 Appendix 1. INTERVIEW QUESTIONS These questions are arranged arbitrarily. This may not represent a complete interview, owing to the fact that some questions may have been answered without being asked, and other related questions may have been thought up during the course of the interview, depending on informant response. i. What role do you play on the Musqueam Creek Committee? ii. Would you call this a restoration project? Why or why not? What alternative words could be used to describe the project, e.g. rehabilitation, regeneration? iii. Do you feel that it is important that this project is undertaken in a democratic fashion, involving as many members of the public as possible? Should certain interests be given more weight than others? iv. What kind of values do you think underlie your own involvement in the restoration project, apart from the immediate ecological goals, i.e., are there other values at work here, such as cultural, educational, historical, or aesthetic values? How important are they in relation to the ecological goals of the project? v. How would you describe what humanity's relationship with nature is presently? What do you think it should be? vi. Do you think of this project as being about fixing something that is broken, i.e. purely as an engineering project, or as a project that has come about because of some sort of Land Ethic, where the goal is more holistic? vii. Who is actually doing the restorative work in the field? Who do you think should be responsible for doing this work, both now and in the future? viii. Do you think that humans have a moral obligation to restore degraded ecosystems? If so, what is the reason why they do and how would you convince others who do not share your sense of moral obligation that to do so is the "right thing to do"? ix. Do you think that this project has significance for the broader community? How would you define the "broader community"? x. What is it about this particular ecosystem that justifies the cost of restoration? Who do you think should pay that cost? xi. Do you think of the pristine wilderness as the ideal for this project, or for any other restoration project? xii. If you were to view the work that you do on the restoration of the Musqueam Watershed as though it were your professional duty, who do you think would be the client? 


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