EnergyBasic and Decision-Making
EnergyBasic and Decision-Making
Today,the global change issues have become a worldwide concern where everydecision may result in uncertain risks. These concerns are affectingthe policies enacted in different parts of the world including NovaScotia, Canada. The world faces unprecedented challenges arising froma scale of human activity and its impact. In this decade, humanactivities have had a significant effect on the biodiversity,ecosystem, and the security of current and future generations(Polasky et al., 2011). Therefore, it is necessary to have anintegrated analysis of the dynamics of socio-ecological systems whereevery policymaker has to take into account the large spatial andtemporal risks and balance because it shows the current and potentialconsequences of the decisions.
Sometimes, the standard methods of making decision presents uncertainties,which makes it necessary to have information that will show thelikelihood of other situations, their effects, and overall benefits(Polasky et al., 2011). Nonetheless, the potential situations andpossibilities and the impacts of different actions or theiradvantages for the global change issues are often unknown. Thus, thedecision makers use the decision theory, scenarios, thresholds, andresilience thinking to expand awareness of the potential situationsand outcomes as well as the probabilities and results of outcomesunder different decisions. They can also use adaptive managementwhere every decision is considered an experiment that will informfuture decisions (Polasky et al., 2011).
Currently,the world is experiencing a rapid rate of environmental change, andwith the intricacy of feedback effects in socio-ecological systemsand lack of historical statistics, the future decisions are marred byuncertainty. Besides, the attempts to compare the probable outcomesand substitute decisions results in significant elements ofpresumptions. Despite these difficulties, understanding the futuretrajectory of global change is important because it helps in formingsustainable developments that aim to satisfy the current needs ofpeople without affecting the ability of future generations to meettheir needs (Polasky et al., 2011).
Likeanywhere else in the developed nations, the 20thcentury in Nova Scotia was characterized by successful industrial andtechnological innovations, but they also led to unintended andharmful consequences. Presently, the lack of reliable information onthe implications of the current actions makes it hard to advise thedecision-makers on how the current actions can affect the trajectoryof global change (Polasky et al., 2011). However, the policymakershave to understand that working in an era characterized by globalchange it requires a better ability to gather new information andperspectives to predict better the future conditions. Besides, theyshould be capable of making good decisions even without fullknowledge, but fully using the available information at the time.Moreover, repeated decision-making through time and earlier decisionhelp in determining the conditions under which subsequent decisionsshould be made. Thus, it is crucial to evaluate not only the futureimpacts of the current decisions but also the possibility of learningusing those choices to help enlighten future decisions (Polasky etal., 2011).
Consequently,the decision theory can be useful in such a situation. The decisiontheory is a powerful tool that provides advice on the excellentmanagement alternative using the available information. It can beused for optimization to increase the expected utility or minimizethe risks (“Decision Making Challenge III,” 2015). In a standarddecision theory, uncertainty is symbolized by assuming a set ofpossible situations with a known possibility for the occurrence ofeach state. Outcomes result from the combination of state and action,which generates a set of possible states, which increases theestimated cumulative benefit of the results and the possibility ofoccurrence aggregated over all likely outcomes. However, the theoryrequires information about the possibilities of various outcomesunder alternative management options and the benefits of thoseresults.
Thenagain, one of the highly accepted approaches is the EnvironmentalImpact Analyses (EIA), which defines the relevant environmentalfactors in the form of descriptive analysis. EIA is mandatory forsome projects in several countries including Canada (Milne, 1991).The EIA is used in Nova Scotia to predict the environmental effectsof proposed projects before they are carried out. Specifically, theregion mainly uses an integral EIA, which combines the economic,health, cultural, social, and physiological well-being as well as thebiological, physical, and geochemical environments to provide acomprehensive understanding of the complex interrelationship betweenthe natural environment and human activities that are fundamental tohealth. Thus, the framework of this approach is the biophysicalconcerns related to a proposed project (Milne, 1991).
Furthermore,economics also has a significant effect on the decision-makingprocess (“Decision Making Challenge IV,” 2015). The decisionmakers have to analyze the social costs and benefits of every projectwhile still considering the full range of values associated with theexpected changes. Therefore, the decision makers have to consider howthey can use market information from the Nova Scotia region and useit to quantify if a project is worth much to the people collectively.They can quantify a project using the consumer’s willingness to payand the particular region within Nova Scotia where the services orproducts are much needed. However, when evaluating the total economicvalue of the environmental amenities, it is crucial to considerdirect and indirect use values, existence values, and option values(“Decision Making Challenge IV,” 2015). The direct and indirectvalues assess both consumptive and non-consumptive uses such as waterpurification by wetlands. The option values are the worth that peopleexperience, which are associated with keeping current and futurepossibilities open to everyone. Lastly, the existence value consistsof the significance of knowing that something persists withoutexpecting to use them presently or in the future (“Decision MakingChallenge IV,” 2015).
Thedisastrous effects of global change have attracted much attentioneven from the movie industry, which has resulted in the release offilms to depict the sudden and adverse changes in the climate such asthe day after tomorrow (Leiserowitz, 2005). The movie had aconsiderable impact on global warming risk perception among thepeople who watched it. Consequently, it created a higher level ofconcern among about global warming while still encouraging the peoplewho watched it take up actions in political, personal, and socialaspects to deal with climate change and ease global warming(Leiserowitz, 2005).
Inconclusion, global change is a major concern in most regionsincluding Nova Scotia as it is expected to bring higher sea levels,warmer average temperatures, storm flooding, and extreme rainfalls.Hence, the policy makers have to careful to ensure that everydecision they make considers the current and future outcomes and thebenefits of those results. Consequently, it is meant to ensure thatthe current decisions do not infringe on the future generationsability to meet their needs. As such, the decision theory helps inevaluating the outcome of every decision even when the policy makerslack sufficient historical statistics. On the other hand, theEnvironmental Impact Analyses assesses the impact of every project inNova Scotia before it commences. These initiatives are significantsteps towards a better regional and global environment, which alsocalls for personal and social responsibilities of every citizen.
Decision-MakingChallenges IV: Complexity & How to Address It in Decision-Making[lecture notes]. (2015). 1-14.
Decision-MakingChallenge III: Using Individual Preference and Economic Values toInform Decisions [lecture notes]. (2015). 1-26.
Leiserowitz,A. A. (2005). Before and after the day after tomorrow:a U.S.Study of climate change risk perception.Environment,46(9), 24-44.
Milne,M. J. (1991). Accounting, Environmental Resources Values, andNon-Market Valuation Techniques for Environmental Resources.Accounting,Auditing & Accountability Journal,4(3), 81-101.
Polasky,S., Carpenter, S. R., Folke, C., & Keeler, B. (2011).Decision-Makingunder Great Uncertainty: Environmental Management in an Era of GlobalChange.Retrieved Fromfile:///C:/Users/Grace/AppData/Local/Temp/reading%233-2.html