The Changing Ethics of Climate Change

Ethics and International Affairs 28 (3):351-358 (2014)
Many in the environmental movement have argued in recent years that in order to speed up climate actions we should take the ethics out of the climate change debate. Focusing on the moral obligation to act or on the effects of climate change on the most vulnerable was often judged to render the discourse too “heavy,” “negative,” or “difficult.” Many also deemed it unnecessary. After all, renewable energies, better designed cities that allow for reduced car use, and power plant regulations that lead to cleaner local air—to take just three examples—all have real and substantial benefits unrelated to the fact that they are “the right thing to do” in the face of climate change. They create jobs, reduce health problems and costs, and make society fitter
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DOI 10.1017/S0892679414000422
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