The environmental problems in the Anthropocene, should have a global character and, therefore, concern all humankind. Anthropogenic environmental causes are threatening more and more the biodiversity, which is why it is humans’ responsibility and obligation to preserve and appreciate species diversity, and include themselves, again, in the animal kingdom.
The modern scientific community recognizes rights and intrinsic values in every species regardless of their ecological role. However, those rights have not been respected by most human societies. The fact, though, that it has been recognized philosophically and legally it is a step forward to the right direction, but in the Anthropocene that is not only not enough but the pace of progress on this matters should speed up.
The last decade the concern on this issues have sparked intense research and social discourse. Guerrini (2016:25), calls for a discourse that involves nonhuman animals, while it displaces humans from their anthropocentricity. Ground breaking ideas are a necessity to assist humans with the comprehension of the ethical challenges emerging from the variation of human and nonhuman relationships, especially, the new ones that are developing due to anthropogenic stress on biodiversity.
Which is why Keulartz (2016: np), argues that, in the Anthropocene, the traditional anthropocentric deontology, that is based on utilitarianism, can’t offer answers to ethical questions, thus, new moral approaches need to be entertained. This is crucial, particularly, because as Crutzen (2002:23) states humans will maintain their role as the leading environmental force for many years to come, therefore, scientists need to find and societies to implement environmentally sustainable methods of management and conservation.
The golden mean, though would be sustainable conservation approaches that are infused with animal ethics and take an interdisciplinary approach. This combination can become a valuable tool in the holistic understanding of the impact of climate change on human-nonhuman animal affairs. This, in return, will produce those insights necessary to start devising ethical and environmentally sustainable practices of management and conservation that will place in the center the triptych environment-humans-nonhuman animals, equally.
Therefore conservation methods not only should not separate humans from nonhuman animals and the rest of the biosphere, especially since climate changes has been stressing all of these already complex relations and processes, but also culture should not be separated form nature either. Mentalities about the nature of human-nonhuman animal relations are influenced by social variables that will eventually guide positions on conservation policies. Thus, practices that fuse cultural perceptions with scientific methods will offer a personalized management approach in each society, which will make it easier for humans of different cultural backgrounds to accept, respect and abide to ethical environmental policies. Because, human integration in an ethically sustainable environment is not just a matter of science and technology, it is also a matter of changing morality, attitude and behavior, in order to create a more nature-friendly society (Plant 1987: 4).
Thereby, apart from the practical solutions that need to employ a nonhuman animal friendly philosophical basis, and an underline premise of a non-anthropocentric view of nature, the legal frame for the protection of the biosphere is of equal importance. However, the legal status of environmental protection alone is not sufficient, since its poor implementation does not ensure ecological balance. Hence, humans should start the individual process of self-examination, in order to mature and rediscover their animality, so they can protect nature and other animals.