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IMPLEMENTATION 64 HAZARD EVOLUTION MODEL A framework for considering the problem of vessel garbage may be found in the work of social geographer Roger Kasperson and public administration specialist David Pijawka (Kasperson and Pijawka, 1985), who considered the ways in which technological hazards pose different and more challenging problems to the public and the government than do natural hazards such as hurricanes, tornadoes, or earthquakes. This work draws upon an overall conceptual framework of analysis developed at Clark University (Hohenemser et al., 1985; Kasperson et al., 1985). Kasperson and Pijawka proposed that technological hazards challenge institutions and communities for a number of reasons: (1) These hazards are new and unfamiliar; (2) there is a lack of accumulated experience with control or coping measures; (3) there is a lack of full appreciation of the hazard chain; (4) the broad opportunities for control mechanisms make these hazards seem more controllable than natural hazards are; and (5) there is a perception that technological hazards can be corrected with technical solutions, regardless of the social context or the significance of social costs. In sum, technological hazards are viewed erroneously as easily "fixable," with the result that less attention and effort are devoted to them than is warranted. In an effort to adjust perceptions to reality, Kasperson and Pijawka proposed using a hazard evolution model to clarify analysis of unfamiliar technological hazards. This comprehensive yet simple model examines the ways in which a society generates technological hazards and deals with the resulting impacts (see Figure 3-1). Human needs result in human wants, which are satisfied by a choice of technology. The selected technology can produce a product or byproduct (waste) that poses a hazard. For example, the production technology may create air, water, or ground pollution that requires constant controls. In addition, the product or its packaging can create hazards after its intended use if disposal is not controlled (e.g., discarded plastic six-pack rings may ensnare small animals). Once the material is in use or released into the environment, humans or other organisms can be exposed to and be harmed by the hazard. Using this flow diagram, Kasperson and Pijawka identified general types of interventions at each stage of the hazard-generating process that could prevent the hazard and its concomitant risks. The model provides an organizing framework for confronting a technological hazard and permits a full appreciation of the intervention opportunities available, both "upstream" and "downstream" of the initiating events. Upstream (toward the left), human wants can be modified, or the technology used to address the wants can be altered, or an initiating event during use of the material can be prevented, or release of the materials can be prevented. Downstream (toward the right), once release or use occurs, exposure of organisms to the hazard can be blocked, or the negative consequences of
IMPLEMENTATION Figure 3-1 The Chain of Technological Hazard Evolution. Source: Kasperson and Pijawka, 1985. 65