Defending Biodiversity Book uri icon


  • © Jonathan Newman, Gary Varner, Stefan Linquist 2017. All rights reserved. Imagine that you are an environmentalist who passionately believes that it is wrong to drill for oil in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. How do you convince someone that a decision to drill is wrong? Debates about the environment and how humans ought to treat it have gone on for decades, yet arguments in favor of preserving biodiversity often lack empirical substance or are philosophically naïve, making them far less effective than they could be. This book critically examines arguments that are commonly offered in support of biodiversity conservation. The authors adopt a skeptical viewpoint to thoroughly test the strength of each argument and, by demonstrating how scientific evidence can be integrated with philosophical reasoning, they help environmentalists to better engage with public debate and judiciously inform public policy. This interdisciplinary and accessible book is essential reading for anyone who engages in discussions about the value of biodiversity conservation. Systematically categorizes various rationales for preserving biodiversity and discusses their 'weak links', with the aim of helping readers to strengthen their own arguments A highly interdisciplinary book that ties philosophical arguments about instrumental and intrinsic value to scientific research and related debates about empirical issues Accessible to a wide readership, including environmental scientists and environmental philosophers.

altmetric score

  • 9.2

author list (cited authors)

  • Newman, J. A., Varner, G., & Linquist, S.

citation count

  • 17

publication date

  • October 2017