The reasoning is that the market is the most democratic means of assigning value. The basic idea is that people will be richer in the future as economies keep growing, so a given amount of a commodity or money will have less value than it has now. But his larger point is, more simply, that even such quantitative economic evaluations need to fully incorporate moral principles.
If we hide or dilute the moral issues, then this important truth is lost, and the prospects for ethically defensible action diminish. The others involve the different impacts of climate change around the world and among different populations, and the prospect that theoretical uncertainties in areas such as intergenerational ethics and climate science will make it difficult for us to act.
The way economists calculate discount rates has enormous implications for energy policy. Trained in economics at MIT, Broome is particularly interested in assessing the ethical judgments made by economists. But while that practice might work well to account for the value of commodities, Broome argues that calculating the discount rate for action on climate change is far more complex.
He doubts we would be very good at it, or very fair in applying a technology that would be likely to harm some people and help others. But how should we value the ability to avoid a catastrophic outcome that is very improbable?
Most people accept that it is worthwhile to invest in avoiding a particularly onerous outcome, even if it is not a likely one. Gardiner reaches similar conclusions after a far different type of analysis. Is it ethical of us to expect a future generation to take on the dangers and costs of geoengineering because we have failed to address climate change?
More generally, the current focus on the green energy revolution rationale puts pressure in the wrong place.
But he stresses that the ethical assumptions underlying such analyses are critical—and that economists often ignore or misunderstand them.
Typically, economists calculate the discount rate by using money markets to determine the expected return on capital. In his book, Requiem for a Species: Even if people are richer in the future, climate change might reduce the quality of their lives.
Indeed, few are even likely to accept the basic role that ethical issues should play in our policy decisions, and certainly our responsibilities to the distant future are seldom part of the public debate.
Broome wrestles with how to balance these factors in an ethically responsible way, concluding that economists are, in general, right in adopting so-called cost-benefit analyses to evaluate actions on climate change.
More than anything else, it determines what sacrifices the present generation should make for the sake of the future. What Would God Do? Perhaps most damning, he says that it raises moral problems—and strains common sense—to propose using such risky measures because we have failed to tackle climate change with existing technologies.
And climate change makes that obvious. Some leading economists have begun arguing that heading off even the remote chance of such outcomes should be the main object of climate-change policy. Most notably, William Nordhaus of Yale University published A Question of Balance, in which he argued that the appropriate discount rate should be about 5 percent.
This is a moral matter. If humans were sufficiently omniscient and omnipotent, would we, like God, use climate engineering methods benevolently? The key point is that we should act on climate change even if doing so does not make us better off: In A Perfect Moral Storm: Crosswinds Though they reflect very different interests and objectives, these books, taken together, begin to shed light on why climate change has been such a difficult problem to address and even define.
It might be supposed that we should do everything we can possibly do now, but that would probably be wrong, suggests Broome, since extremely radical action would have such negative consequences for those alive today that the effects would be felt for generations.
Broome also ponders the implications of how we think about extreme risk. Earth system science cannot answer this question, but it hardly needs to, for we know the answer already. Not surprisingly, Broome calls for using moral principles to evaluate just how bad various outcomes could be and how much we should concentrate on avoiding them.
Nordhaus thus concluded that spending to deal with climate change should be much more gradual, and that much of it should be delayed for several decades. Given that humans are proposing to engineer the climate because of a cascade of institutional failings and self-interested behaviours, any suggestions that deployment of a solar shield would be done in a way that fulfilled the strongest principles of justice and compassion would lack credibility, to say the least.Climate Change and Its Ethical Challenges In this essay, first published in The Bahá’í WorldArthur Dahl asks what are the ethical concepts and spiritual principles that are now necessary to transform society in order to make solutions to global warming possible?
ethics of climate change PLEASE ENSURE THE FOLLOWING 4 REFERENCES ARE BEING USED, FOLLOWED BY AN ADDITIONAL 8 THAT YOU CAN CHOOSE AT YOUR mi-centre.com NEEDS TO BE 12 REFERENCES. The coming temperature change labeled “global warming” is simply a symptom of climate disruption.
Research is required to generate specific forecasts of effects on water supply, on hurricanes and other storms, and on droughts, floods, and many other phenomena. Climate Change Essays. According to the case study entitled "On the Ethics of International Religious/Spiritual Gatherings" the impact of global warming and climate change involve ethical elements such as carbon foot printing, that are addressed by political leaders, businesses, and religious organizations in an effort to address.
Because global climate change is likely to have substantial impacts on the environment and human health, bioethicists should take part in the discussion about global warming and contribute their perspectives to these urgent issues.
ETHICS AND CLIMATE CHANGE POLICY Peter Lee With a foreword by Dr Peter Forster, Bishop of Chester The Global Warming Policy Foundation GWPF Essay 2.Download