Resolving Environmental Conflicts, Second Edition
CRC Press – 2011 – 271 pages
True progress toward an ecologically sound environment and a socially just culture will be initially expensive in money and effort. The longer we wait, however, the more disastrous the environmental condition will become, the more disputes will arise as a result of our declining quality of life, and the more expensive and difficult the necessary social changes will be. The second edition of a bestseller, Resolving Environmental Conflicts demonstrates how to practice the type of conflict resolution that not only settles a dispute but also heals the people.
Once the consultants and mediators leave, the work must go on. This second edition covers the basic transformative concepts vital for resolving environmental conflicts. It includes discussions of the inviolate biophysical principles, how the English language is changing, as well as the critical principles of social behavior. It also examines new dynamics in making decisions along with the effects of the younger generations shifting their interests from nature-oriented interest to technologically oriented interests and their subsequent lack of understanding the importance of the natural environment to a sustainable society.
No biological shortcuts, technological quick fixes, or political rhetoric can mend what is broken. Dramatic, fundamental change is necessary if we are really concerned with bettering the quality of life. It is not a question of can we change or can't we, but one of will we change or won't we. Change is a choice, a choice of individuals reflected in the collective of society and mirrored in the landscape throughout the generations. Considerably more than a "how to" directive, this book examines the "whys" of the mediation process and broadens the knowledge base by providing the philosophical underpinnings of "a new environmental responsibility."
From the "down and dirty" (who can shout the loudest?) to the cerebral (the Law of Cosmic Unification), Maser and Pollio's Resolving Environment Conflict has something for everyone involved in negotiating, mediating and resolving disputes. I have spent almost forty years in the conflict resolution arena and thought I knew it all until Chris and Carol forced me to look in the "coping mechanism" mirror only to see my own dispute resolution weaknesses staring back. A must read!
—Mr. Michael J. Bartlett, President of New Hampshire Audubon and retired Field Supervisor, US Fish and Wildlife Service New England Field Office
Seasoned veterans Chris Maser and Carol Pollio take us on a visit to our planet’s 21st Century frontier—effective resolution of environmental conflicts. They make a clear case for our adaptive social evolution: Transform ourselves and live. Fail to transform ourselves and die. … In well-written, unequivocal language, they map a way forward—a pattern of thought, ethic, word, relationship mending, and action—that can only help us save our planet and, thereby, ourselves … If you want to save the planet, read this gracefully written book. Onward to the healing frontier!
—James A. "Cap" Caplan, veteran of 30 years working with environmental conflict, senior administrator for the U.S. Forest Service, and author of The Theory and Principles of Environmental Dispute Resolution and The Practice of Environmental Dispute Resolution
Praise for the First Edition:
This book is very readable and also offers additional valuable references for facilitators as well as those immersed in environmental conflicts.
—Environmental Network News, January/February 1996
Maser's experience has proven that the facilitation process works best at the local level.
—FORUM For Applied Research and Public Policy
Approaches to MediationMediation at the Crossroads
A Brief Look at the Mediation Process We Practice It
Conflict is a ChoiceWhat Is A "Right"?
The Equality of Differences
Environmental Justice Is Predicated On Human Equality
Perceived Resource Scarcity Accentuates Environmental Conflict
Resource Overexploitation: A Matter of Perceived Loss
Conflict is a Mistake
Conflict is Usually Based on the Misjudgment of Appearances
Biophysical Principles of SustainabilityThe Waterbed Principle
Understanding the Law of Cosmic Unification
The Inviolate Biophysical Principles
Social Principles of SustainabilityThe Paradox of Life
Air: The Breath of Life-And Of Death
Soil: The Great Placenta
Water: A Captive of Gravity
Biodiversity: The Variety of Life
Sunlight: The Source of Global Energy
Human Population: A Matter of Gender Equality
How the Commons Usufruct Law Arose
The Precursor of Today's Environmental Conflicts
Social Principles of Engagement in a Sustainable Society
The Human EquationA Child's Gift
We Take Our Family With Us
Dysfunctional Family Dynamics Lead To Ongoing Destructive
Homeostasis Is Designed To Hide Dysfunction
Boundaries, The Silent Language
Coping Mechanisms: Unconscious Thoughts That Manifest As Regonizable Behaviors
The Capacity For Rational Thought
Everyone Is Right From Their Point of View
Acceptance of Circumstances Offers the Choices of What Might Be
Communication: The Interpersonal ElementLanguage as a Tool
The Use of Silence In Communication
The Need to Be Heard
The Basic Elements of Communication
Changes in the Children's Oxford Dictionary
Nature Deficit Disorder in Children
Barriers to Communication
Inability to Transfer Experiences from One Situation to Another
The Process Is The DecisionFaith in the Process is Belief in the Outcome
The Primacy of Process
Perception is Truth; Facts Are Relative
Reframing the Issue
Conflict Is a Learning PartnershipA Mediator Is At All Times a Guest And A Leader Simultaneously
The Fallacy of Rescuing
A Mediator's Role in Participant Relationships
Mediation Means Total Participation
Detachment and Equanimity
As A Mediator, You Must Be A Sieve, Not A Sponge
As A Mediator, You Are The Keeper Of Each Participant's Dignity
Have A Beginner's Mind
The Continual Learning Curve
Practicing the Mediation of ConscienceCompromise and the Point of Balance
A Curriculum of Compassion and Justice
Mediation as a Gift is Free, But as a Trade Has a Cost
Resolution: Social-Environmental Conflict Brought To A Shared VisionWho Are We As A Culture?
What Legacy Do We Want To Leave Our Children?
Vision, Goals, and Objectives
Modifying Our Belief Systems Regarding Change
Chris Maser is an Author and Consultant in Corvallis, Oregon.
Carol A. Pollio is a Consultant and Professor at American Public University, Amherst, Massachusetts.