The health and state of the environment today has become uppermost in the people's minds because of the adverse consequences of man's activities. The sorry state of the environment is manifested by fast-dwindling natural resources, both the renewable and non-renewable. …
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Acceptance of the reality of interdependency is implicit idea that all kinds or types of natural resources are for the good of everybody. This means resources are safeguarded for a common purpose of use, exploitation and preservation for replenishment and eventual use of all future generations. This idea is called the global commons of natural resources (Nonini 164). Early or primitive human societies had latched unto this idea of the commons due to their own survival instincts. Every member of the tribe is tasked to help preserve all resources not only for today's present consumption needs but for the future requirements of succeeding generations as well. Because of this concept of environmental preservation, the tribe members had banded themselves together with some social, cultural or religious arrangements to ensure that resources are safeguarded from over-exploitation, allowed to recover and replenish and to make everyone aware that no one owns these resources exclusively but everybody owns it. It is this idea that is known as the commons with the added sense of good stewardship. People are supposed to take only what they need from their common-pool resources. A fertile or rich environment can support a population adequately to provide a comfortable life as long as this practice is enforced. Nobody is supposed to take more than what they need, such as exploiting a resource for profit because some people had become too greedy. This had been practiced by the native Americans before the white colonizers came along. In fact, this is shown to be viable, a sense of abundance even in marginal ecological zones (ibid.). Continued population growth had put pressure on natural resources, a grim reminder of the theory put forward by Malthus centuries ago regarding...
Good governance today demands consent, cooperation and commitment from people and the old ways of using coercion is no longer an acceptable alternative when imposing some form of social contract in managing common-pool resources (CPR). In fact, this was what the Nobel prize winner Elinor Ostrom advocates, using her recommended seven principles on the best ways on how to govern the commons while privatization is also considered but it has its limitations but an important point is that socio-economic models for sustainable extraction of resources can be implemented using the old ideas of liberal democracy. Global commons has been shown to be generative as well if done right, such as in music, literature, new medical technologies, hybrid seeds and in computer software where the intellectual rights are recognized and protected by copyright and patent laws.
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