Archive for December 11th, 2009


Climate Ethics

December 11, 2009

Time Magazine has just done a nice piece responding to Todd Stern’s bald rejection of the notion of a climate debt the other day. Friend and former colleague Dale Jamieson gets a nod:

“The impact of emitting greenhouse gases will go on for a millennium or more,” said Dale Jamieson, an environmental ethicist at New York University, in a speech last year. “It’s as if I stood on your foot for a while. It hurts, but when I take my foot off you, the pain gets worse and goes on longer. That’s the kind of problems we deal with in climate change, and that’s why we need to act sooner rather than later.”

As does Don Brown, who organized the contingent of ethicists here at COP through his outfit at Penn State University:

“Ethics says that those who cause the problem must take responsibility for compensating for the damages,” says Donald Brown, director of the Collaborative Program on Ethical Dimensions of Climate Change at Penn State University. “It’s unfair and unethical to deny that responsibility.”

We held a presser this morning. More on that in a bit.