SRJC Course Outlines

1/19/2019 7:35:16 PMECON 12 Course Outline as of Fall 2015

Changed Course
CATALOG INFORMATION

Discipline and Nbr:  ECON 12Title:  INTRO ECON & ENVIRONMENT  
Full Title:  Introduction to Economics and the Environment
Last Reviewed:5/11/2015

UnitsCourse Hours per Week Nbr of WeeksCourse Hours Total
Maximum3.00Lecture Scheduled3.0017.5 max.Lecture Scheduled52.50
Minimum3.00Lab Scheduled06 min.Lab Scheduled0
 Contact DHR0 Contact DHR0
 Contact Total3.00 Contact Total52.50
 
 Non-contact DHR0 Non-contact DHR Total0

 Total Out of Class Hours:  105.00Total Student Learning Hours: 157.50 

Title 5 Category:  AA Degree Applicable
Grading:  Grade or P/NP
Repeatability:  00 - Two Repeats if Grade was D, F, NC, or NP
Also Listed As: 
Formerly: 

Catalog Description:
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An introduction to environmental studies emphasizing the interplay of ecology, economics, ethics and their translation to public policy. Topics include macroeconomic design characteristics and market failure  as causes of environmental degradation; socio-ecological requirements for a sustainable society; and  economic tools of analysis and incentive-based policy prescriptions for resolving problems of resource scarcity and environmental pollution. Includes perspectives from microeconomics, macroeconomics, and ecological economics.  Also examines the role of policy in addressing environmental issues at the local, national, and global levels.

Prerequisites/Corequisites:


Recommended Preparation:
Eligibility for ENGL 1A or equivalent

Limits on Enrollment:

Schedule of Classes Information
Description: Untitled document
An introduction to environmental studies emphasizing the interplay of ecology, economics, ethics and their translation to public policy. Topics include macroeconomic design characteristics and market failure  as causes of environmental degradation; socio-ecological requirements for a sustainable society; and  economic tools of analysis and incentive-based policy prescriptions for resolving problems of resource scarcity and environmental pollution. Includes perspectives from microeconomics, macroeconomics, and ecological economics.  Also examines the role of policy in addressing environmental issues at the local, national, and global levels.
(Grade or P/NP)

Prerequisites:
Recommended:Eligibility for ENGL 1A or equivalent
Limits on Enrollment:
Transfer Credit:CSU;UC.
Repeatability:00 - Two Repeats if Grade was D, F, NC, or NP

ARTICULATION, MAJOR, and CERTIFICATION INFORMATION

Associate Degree:Effective:Fall 2009
Inactive: 
 Area:D
H
Social and Behavioral Sciences
Global Perspective and Environmental Literacy
 
CSU GE:Transfer Area Effective:Inactive:
 DSocial ScienceFall 2009
 D2Economics  
 
IGETC:Transfer Area Effective:Inactive:
 4Social and Behavioral ScienceFall 2009
 4BEconomics  
 
CSU Transfer:TransferableEffective:Fall 2009Inactive:
 
UC Transfer:TransferableEffective:Fall 2009Inactive:
 
C-ID:

Certificate/Major Applicable: Major Applicable Course



COURSE CONTENT

Student Learning Outcomes:
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Upon completion of this course, students will be able to:
 
1.  Explain economy-environment interdependence and examine its implications for transitioning to an environmentally sustainable economy.
2.  Identify major environmental issues facing society today and explain how systemic economic drivers contribute to environmental degradation.
3.  Identify and assess tools of economic thought and analysis, as well as methods of economic inquiry (drawing from both standard economics and ecological economics) that can be employed to alleviate environmental problems.

Objectives: Untitled document
Upon completion of the course, students will be able to:
 
1.  Define environmental sustainability and explain the ecological imperative underlying it.
2.  Differentiate between ecological and economic perspectives, and identify ways in which these two perspectives can be combined to address environmental issues.
3.  Describe the relationship between economic growth and the environment, explore the question of planetary limits, and posit a formulation for environmentally sustainable economic development.
4.  Outline the shortcomings of current national income accounting measures in terms of their ability to serve as indicators of sustainable development; describe adjustments to these measures that would cause them to better reflect environmental and resource factors; and evaluate whether new, "greener" measures of national well-being are needed.
5.  Explain how markets work and why they fail, and evaluate the market's ability to look after the environment as well as the case for government intervention.
6.  Compare and contrast command-and-control type policies with incentive-based policies and evaluate their effectiveness in reducing environmental impacts.
7.  On the basis of current evidence regarding global climate change, discuss the seriousness of the problem, evaluate the role of economics in creating the problem and appraise economic policy alternatives.
8.  Evaluate the perspectives of women and those in the non-Western world regarding the interface between economics and the environment.

Topics and Scope
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I.  An introduction to economics and the environment
  A.  Two methods of inquiry
       1.  The traditional economics approach
       2.  The ecological economics approach
  B.  Brief history of environment and economics
  C.  Science and ethics
  D.  Sustainability and sustainable development
II.  The environment; biophysical constraints
  A.  Energy
  B.  Ecology
III.  Humans in the environment - some history
  A  History and human numbers
  B.  Human environmental impact
IV.  The economy in the environment - a conceptual framework
  A.  The big picture: circular flow model with economy-environment interdependence
  B.  Stocks and flows
  C.  Natural capital
  D.  Implications of the laws of thermodynamics
  E.  Threats to sustainability
V.  Macroeconomics and the environment
  A.  Economic growth and human well-being
  B.  Economic growth and the environment
       1.  Kenneth Boulding: "The Spaceship Earth"
       2.  Donella Meadows: "The Limits to Growth" and "Beyond the Limits"
       3.  Herman Daly: "Beyond Growth"
       4.  Tim Jackson:  "Prosperity without Growth"
  C.  Issues of macroeconomic scale
  D.  National income accounting conventions (such as GDP)
  E.  National income accounting and the environment
  F.  Greening the National Income Accounts
       1.  Index for Sustainable Economic Welfare (ISEW) and Genuine
                Progress Indicator (GPI)
       2.  Other alternative measures of economic progress
       3.  Environmental asset accounts
VI.  Microeconomics and the environment
  A  How markets work
  B.  Limits to markets
       1.  Market failure
             a.  Externalities
            b.  Public goods
            c.  Common-property resources
       2.  Correcting market failure.  Markets and sustainability: The case for
             government intervention
VII.  Governance and the economics of a sustainable society
  A.  Determining policy objectives
  B.  Operationalizing sustainability
       1.  Weak and strong sustainability
       2.      Precautionary principle
  C.  Environmental policy instruments
       1.  Moral suasion
       2.  Command and control
       3.  Creation of property rights [including Coase Theorem, common assets)
       4.  Taxation  (Pigouvian taxes)
       5.  Quotas, caps and tradable permits
       6.  Others, may include: least cost theorem, environmental performance bonds, subsidies
  D.  General policy design principles: An ecological economics approach
       1.  Sustainable scale
       2.  Just distribution
        3.  Efficient allocation
VIII.  Applications: pollution  (Topics may include some, not all, listed below)
  A.  Pollution: impacts and policy responses
  B  Global climate change
  C.  Industrial ecology
  D.  Environmental justice considerations
IX.  Applications: energy and resources (Topics may include some, not all, listed below)
  A.  Non-renewable resources
  B.  Energy:  the great transition
  C.  Renewable resources
  D.  Ecosystem management/ biodiversity
X.  Environment, trade and development
  A.  World trade and the environment
  B.  Institutions for sustainable development
       1.  Muhammed Yunus and the Grameen Bank
       2.  Vandana Shiva and Navdanya
 C.  Climate change
 D.  Biodiversity loss

Assignments:
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1.  Regular weekly reading assignments from course texts and supplementary materials.
     Typical reading assignments are 25 to 50 pages.
2.  Ten to twelve take-home assignments and practice quizzes covering assigned readings
      and discussion topics.  Quizzes may be multiple choice or short answer.
3.  One or two midterm examination(s):  Students must write in-class essays in response to
     questions on material covered in class and in texts and supplemental readings (50%).
     Students will answer multiple-choice questions on material covered in class and in
      assigned readings (50%).
4.  Final Examination: Students must complete an in-class final examination in response to
     questions on material covered in class and in texts and supplemental readings. (Essays
     and multiple choice questions.)
5.  Additional written assignments such as critical analysis and personal response papers
     (250-1500 words) regarding topics from assigned readings, an additional book from a
      selected  bibliography, SRJC Environmental Forum presentations, and  relevant news articles.

Methods of Evaluation/Basis of Grade.
Writing: Assessment tools that demonstrate writing skill and/or require students to select, organize and explain ideas in writing.Writing
20 - 40%
Critical analysis and personal response papers, reports on books and other readings, internet research.
Problem solving: Assessment tools, other than exams, that demonstrate competence in computational or non-computational problem solving skills.Problem Solving
10 - 20%
Homework assignments
Skill Demonstrations: All skill-based and physical demonstrations used for assessment purposes including skill performance exams.Skill Demonstrations
0 - 0%
None
Exams: All forms of formal testing, other than skill performance exams.Exams
50 - 70%
Essay exams, multiple-choice exams
Other: Includes any assessment tools that do not logically fit into the above categories.Other Category
0 - 0%
None


Representative Textbooks:
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An Introduction to Ecological Economics, 2nd ed.  Costanza, Robert; Cumberland, John;
Daly, Herman; Goodland, Robert and Norgaard, Richard.  CRC Press:  2015
 
Economics and the Environment, 7th ed. Goodstein, Eban.  John Wiley and Sons, Inc:  2014
 
Environmental and Natural Resource Economics a Contemporary Approach, 3rd ed.
Harris, Jonathan M.; Roach, Brian. M.E. Sharpe:  2013
 
Environmental and Natural Resource Economics, 10th ed. Tietenberg, Tom; Lewis, Lynne
Pearson:  2014
 
State of the World 2008:  Innovations for a Sustainable Econoomy. The Worldwatch Institute.
W. W. Norton and Company:  2008. (classic)
 
State of the World 2013:  Is Sustainability Still Possible? The Worldwatch Institute.
W.W. Norton and Company: 2013

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