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Climate Ethics

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on 3 July 2017

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Transcript of Climate Ethics

Climate Ethics
Unique nexus
Applied ethics - Psychology - Political Science - Sociology
Economics of Climate Injustice
The perceived and real futility of individual action when compared to GHG emitting industries and their impact/responsibility/financial position.
Who is harmed?
The worst off are in:
unstable states,
with poor governance.
Climate Ethics
The ethical dimensions of climate change.
Rachel Kippen
Climate Justice and Climate Consequences
Dr. Marna Hauk
Spring 2017
Prescott College

Gardiner, Stephen M. (2006). A perfect moral storm: Climate change, intergenerational ethics and the problem of moral corruption. Environmental Values, 15, 397-413.

Kamminga, Menno R. (2008). The ethics of climate politics: Four modes of moral discourse. Environmental Politics, 17(4), 673.

Macy, Joanna. (yr) Active hope: How to face the mess we're in without going crazy.

Revkin, Andrew (2015). The morality of climate change. https://soundcloud.com/integrity20/integrity20-2015-andyrevkin-keynote

Tokar, Brian. (2010). Toward climate justice: Perspectives on the climate crisis and social change. Porsgrunn, Norway: Communalism Press.
"The fact that global warming is caused by human activity does not mean that we are all equally to blame" (Tokar, 2010, p. 7).
"We are all in this together is often how we sell environmentalism. The truth is, we are not all in this together, not at all." Andrew Revkin, 2015
Consideration for what is fair distribution - energy use - technology - infrastructure - urban reorganization - agricultural reform
Not separate from social justice. Social ecologists navigate this space.
or transdisciplinary issue.
No single problem source.
What are the harms?
Increased violence over scarce resources - increased violence towards migrating refugee groups - increased crop failures - starvation - increased farmer suicide - health and nutrition issues- disease - increased spread of disease - increased respiratory issues - increased heat related deaths - wildfire - drought - flooding - hurricanes - soaring temperatures - plummeting temperatures
Who Counts?
Distant others may be less likely to be seen as deserving of ethical consideration (people who live in other countries, who will be alive in the future, nonhuman species)
The fact that fossil fuel rich countries have the ability to pay for climate change mitigating technologies due to wealth driven by fossil fuels. More than half the world's population is living on $2/day.
Cap and trade, offsetting emissions
Marketing of biofuels
People- of color, indigenous, impoverished, living in the global South
Future generations
Nonhuman nature
Nonhuman animals
"The first world owes the third world a climate debt." - Andrew Revkin, 2015
Victims unable to defend themselves could be seen as deserving of ethical consideration
Who deserves your consideration? Future generations? How? People outside your political sphere? Future children who are not your own?
Vandana Shiva's Earth Democracy Principles
Dr. Vandana Shiva, Indian scholar,
environmental activist,
anti globalization author

Andrew Revkin,
Environmental science
journalist, author
Dr. Stephen Gardiner,
climate ethic and virtue
ethic scholar,
University of Washington
Photo: Dr. Vandana Shiva, vandashiva.com
Photo: Pixabay, 2017
Photo: pixabay, 2017
Photo: Rachel Kippen, 2016
Photo: Pixabay, 2017
Joanna Macy, Active Hope, pg. 89

Widening Circles of Self
Diagram from Active Hope, pg. 89, recreated by Rachel Kippen
Ethical consideration of others
Photo: Pixabay, 2017
Guided Discussion
What do you think about the media's portrayal of climate change and climate justice?
What comes to mind when considering the needs of future generations and the actions of the present in terms of setting policies, caps on emissions, quality of life?
Can you think of other social issues that have similar complexities to constitute a perfect storm like the one Gardiner mentions? What about the notion that wealthy nations do not address climate change because they have not addressed other pressing issues/have no interest in doing so?
Photo: Pixabay, 2017
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