Hardin The Tragedy Of The Commons

807 Words 4 Pages
Marie Divine
Bio 130 Environmental Science
30 August, 2017
The Tragedy of the Commons
In Hardin’s work, “The Tragedy of the Commons”, the population problem is thoroughly examined philosophically and logistically. The commons refers to a resource in nature shared by many. The tragedy is referred to an individual’s unlimited use of these resources resulting in overexploitation and the ruin of resources. Haridn’s four major assumptions in this piece guide him to come to an ultimate conclusion. Hardin’s ultimate stance is that the population problem will be solved by “relinquishing the freedom to breed, and that very soon.” Yet looking at his reasoning, I question how this solution would be implemented effectively.
Hardin’s first key assumption
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We must treat the world around us as if it is finite. If we continue to make choices with grave consequence, the world will deteriorate and the effects will be detrimental to the future. There must be limits, however, not only on population, but on the regulations in place over consumption, drilling, water usage, and other areas which impact the world. The method Hardin states to limit breeding is a possibility yet the challenge of getting individuals to agree is still present. There must be greater education upon the consequences of self-interest upon the environment etc. Yet even when individuals are informed, many do not change their future actions due to the depersonalization of the problem. Only when catastrophe truly begins to affect the individuals, will change become a more common occurrence. After reading Hardin's evaluation, I am left with more questions of how to effectively restore the world before the destruction becomes too vast. Not many will willingly give up one of their freedoms for others. With further education, and perhaps at worst, a catastrophe, will people begin to open their eyes to the harms of their self-interests around the world? There is still time to rectify the errors. Still, I wonder, at what point does man have to reach in order to completely understand the consequences of their own wants? Perhaps, one day we will

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