Part 1. Introduction -- Introduction: Navigating the Perfect Moral Storm in Light of a Thirty-Five Year Debate -- Thirty-Five Year Climate Change Policy Debate -- Part 2. Priority Ethical Issues -- Ethical Problems with Cost Arguments -- Ethics and Scientific Uncertainty Arguments -- Atmospheric Targets -- Allocating National Emissions Targets -- Climate Change Damages and Adaptation Costs -- Obligations of Sub-national Governments, Organizations, Businesses, and Individuals -- Independent Responsibility to Act -- Part 3. The Crucial Role of Ethics in Climate (...) Change Policy Making -- Why Has Ethics Failed to Achieve Traction? -- Conclusion: Navigating the Perfect Moral Storm. (shrink)
Preliminary elements of a practical strategy are described to achieve greater traction for ethical principles to guide international efforts to achieve a just global climate change solution. This paper begins with an ethical review of the major elements of United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Conference of Parties 17 outcomes in Durban, South Africa that will be further considered at Conference of Parties 18 in Qatar, December 2012. This analysis then draws conclusions about how to generate greater consideration (...) of the ethical issues that need to be faced if international climate change negotiations have any hope of creating a just global solution to climate change. It will then be argued that the key to obtaining greater traction of ethical principles in climate policy formation is to create greater global awareness of the unjust or ethically unsupportable positions of participants in climate change negotiations, rather than focusing on abstract arguments about what ethics and justice requires. (shrink)
Este ensayo analiza –desde unas lentes éticas- las dos conclusiones posibles sobre los resultados de Cancún. Explicará que, aunque todavía queda alguna esperanza de encontrar soluciones globales al cambio climático debido a las decisiones adoptadas en Cancún, uno debe ver Cancún en el contexto de un error de veinte años en el intento de prevenir un cambio climático peligroso.
Because complex environmental problems are relegated to scientific experts, the ethical questions that are embedded in these problems are often hidden or distorted in scientific and administrative methodology and communication. The administrative process requires that facts and values be separated. Those values that cannot simply be ignored are usually translated into technical economic language and settled in terms of economic costs and benefits. Calls for regulatory reform-i.e., to reduce or eliminate environmental regulation--create additional pressures on analysts that encourage them to (...) focus on quantitative questions at the expense of qualitative ones. Distortion can also result from the use of standard risk assessment procedures and from the improper placement of burden of proof on govemment agencies. The greatest problem, nevertheless, is the narrow scientific training of technical experts which frequently leaves them unprepared to deal with the ethical and value issues in environmental public policy. (shrink)