Why geoengineering is not a ‘global public good’, and why it is ethically misleading to frame it as one

Climatic Change 121 (3):513-525 (2013)
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In early policy work, climate engineering is often described as a global public good. This paper argues that the paradigm example of geoengineering—stratospheric sulfate injection (hereafter ‘SSI’)—does not fit the canonical technical definition of a global public good, and that more relaxed versions are unhelpful. More importantly, it claims that, regardless of the technicalities, the public good framing is seriously misleading, in part because it arbitrarily marginalizes ethical concerns. Both points suggest that more clarity is needed about the aims of geoengineering policy—and especially governance—and that this requires special attention to ethics.



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