Nature of science - 4.8

Science has been used to solve many problems and improve man's lot, but it has also been used in morally questionable ways and in ways that inadvertently caused problems. Advances in sanitation, clean water supplies and hygiene led to significant decreases in death rates but without compensating decreases in birth rates this led to huge population increases with all the problems of resources, energy and food supplies that entails. Ethical discussions, risk-benefit analyses, risk assessment and the precautionary principle are all parts of the scientific way of addressing the common good.