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Urban and Regional Planning ProgramCollege of Architecture and Urban PlanningThe University of MichiganUrban Planning 502Environmental Planning: Issues and ConceptsFall 2001 Richard Norton, Assistant ProfessorTuesdays & Thursdays 3:30 – 5:00 pm 3119 A&AB / 936-01972108 A&AB [email protected] Hours: TBA (and by appt.)Course DescriptionThis is an introductory graduate-level course on the fundamental concepts and issues thatconfront environmental policy makers and planners in practice. The term “environmentalplanning” encompasses a wide array of planning techniques and institutional settings. Ratherthan focusing on one particular type of planning (e.g., cost-benefit analysis, impact assessment,site design), the course is designed to address recurrent value-based and analytical conflicts thatcross that array of various environmental policy-making and planning activities. Although wewill focus in some detail on site planning and impact assessment in particular at the end of theterm, the course is not designed as a hands-on, studio-oriented course.Contemporary environmental policy-making and planning debates typically appear at thesurface to hinge on disagreements about scientific questions and appropriate policy-making andplanning techniques. These debates, however, often mask at their core hidden (and unquestioned)disagreements over fundamental philosophical values and analytical assumptions. Rather thanattempting solely to prepare students to be competent environmental policy analyst and plannertechnicians, the principle goal of this course will be to provide students with the knowledge andskills they will need in order to be thoughtful and creative professionals capable of recognizingthe key disjunctions in communication and analysis that often hinder the achievement of effectiveand satisfying environmental policy and planning solutions. Specifically, the course is designedto:• provide students the ability to recognize and tease apart the competing values andanalytical assumptions made by various stakeholders in environmental policy-making andplanning debates;• consider how those debates are shaped by and play themselves out within the political,legal, and administrative processes that characterize environmental policy-making andplanning in the U.S.; and• familiarize students with the various forms of contemporary environmental policy-makingand planning practice that they will likely encounter in their professional work.The focus of this course will be on domestic environmental planning and policy-making,although students are encouraged to address international environmental planning issues throughtheir independent work if they wish to do so. This class will not address in great depth theconcept of sustainable development, but has been designed as a foundational course for theUP 502 ‘Environmental Planning Fall 2001 ‘ Norton2sustainable development course that will be offered during the spring term. This course shouldalso provide a good complement to a variety of other planning and natural resource managementcourses that focus on particular topics or analytical techniques, such as land use planning anddesign, landscape planning, watershed design, dispute resolution, and analytical tools forenvironmental policy.Course FormatBecause of the nature of the topics to be addressed by this class—topics that lend themselvesto healthy debate—I hope to conduct the class as part recitation and part seminar, with as littlelecturing by me and as much discussion by all as possible. You will be expected to keep ajournal of short summaries and critiques for each set of readings, participate actively in classdiscussions, and write two papers that present synthetic analyses of a selection of the topicscovered. There will not be a mid-term or final exam.I will assign a question each at the end of class for the following class’s journal entry.Journal entries should be printed, double-spaced and 1 to 2 pages in length (no longer than 2pages with standard fonts and margins). Note your name, the session date, and the questionaddressed at the top of each entry. I will typically give a one-class warning before collectingjournals. Use the journals both to summarize briefly the key points being made in the readingsand to critique the readings.Course Requirements and GradingGrades will be assigned for the journal entries on a √- / √ / √+ basis. Well-written entriesthat respond to the assigned question will be given a check and summed (i.e., by completing all ofthe entries thoughtfully you will be able to earn the maximum for that component of your finalgrade). The papers and in-class participation will be given letter grades. The final grades will bebased on the following distribution:Journal: 30%In-class participation: 30%1st Paper: 15%2nd Paper: 25%ReadingsRequired texts:DesJardins, Joseph. 1999. Environmental Ethics: Concepts, Policy, Theory. MountainView, CA: Mayfield Publishing Company.Buck, Susan J. 1996. Understanding Environmental Administration and Law.Washington, D.C.: Island Press.Course Reader (on reserve with Tawny Pruitt for students to copy individually).UP 502 ‘Environmental Planning Fall 2001 ‘ Norton3Recommended texts:Schueler, Tom. 1995. Site Planning for Urban Stream Protection. Ellicott City, MD:Center for Watershed Protection.Bass, Ronald E., et al. 2000. The NEPA Book: A Step-by-Step Guide on How to Complywith the Environmental Policy Act. Point Arena, CA: Solano Press Books.Summary OutlineCourse Introduction / Review of Traditional Philosophical EthicsPart I: Environmental EthicsHistorical context and debatesIs there an environmental crisis?The economics view defended and critiquedPrivate property and public welfareWhat value nature?Alternative visions: anthropocentrism, extensionism, and ecocentric (holistic) ethicsDeep Ecology, Social Ecology, and EcofeminismEnvironmental problems: pollution and environmental justiceEnvironmental problems: growth and developmentPart II: Environmental Policy-Making and Planning Institutions and TechniquesOverview of environmental protection, planning, and lawEnvironmental policy analysis described and critiquedPollution control and wildlife protectionRecent trends: development dispute resolutionDevelopment management planning and suitability analysisIntergovernmental growth managementCase-study: land use planning in coastal North CarolinaPart III: Selected Applications


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