Environmental Values 22 (5):589-608 (2013)

Authors
Aaron Maltais
Stockholm Environment Institute
Abstract
Obligations to reduce one’s green house gas emissions appear to be difficult to justify prior to large-scale collective action because an individual’s emissions have virtually no impact on the environmental problem. However, I show that individuals’ emissions choices raise the question of whether or not they can be justified as fair use of what remains of a safe global emissions budget. This is true both before and after major mitigation efforts are in place. Nevertheless, it remains difficult to establish an obligation to reduce personal emissions because it appears unlikely that governments will in fact maintain safe emissions budgets. The result, I claim, is that under current conditions we lack outcome, fairness, promotional, virtue or duty based grounds for seeing personal emissions reductions as morally obligatory.
Keywords Climate change  Non-ideal theory  personal responsibility  GHG emissions
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Reprint years 2013
DOI 10.3197/096327113X13745164553798
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References found in this work BETA

Reasons and Persons.Derek Parfit - 1984 - Oxford University Press.
Reasons and Persons.Joseph Margolis - 1986 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 47 (2):311-327.
The Ethics of Voting.Jason Brennan - 2011 - Princeton Univ Pr.

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Citations of this work BETA

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Climate Harms.Garrett Cullity - 2019 - The Monist 102 (1):22-41.
Causing Global Warming.Mattias Gunnemyr - 2019 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 22 (2):399-424.
Non-Ideal Climate Justice.Eric Brandstedt - 2019 - Critical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy 22 (2):221-234.

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