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Tip of a boat gliding on a wide river
Precarious tip of the boat gliding on a large river


The paradoxical burden of vulnerable societies that bear the brunt of extreme weather conditions even if they had very little contribution to the anthropogenic origins of climate change must be understood within the complex reality of the nature of climate change Itself.

The intricate relationality and entanglement of all beings on earth makes us all co-responsible for the current dismal condition of our planet.

Every frugal act of conserving nature’s resources can go a long way in alleviating the burdens borne by vulnerable populations and future generations. By the same token, wasteful mismanagement can have a multiplier effect on the undeserved sufferings of other human and non-human living beings.

COMEST then specified the principle of “‘avoiding harming’ people and the environment by failing to act in responding to climate change or by responding to it in an ill-considered way” as a necessary principle of climate change ethics. From this premise follows the articulation of the “Precautionary Principle”, the subject matter of the next and final week of our course.

For discussion in the comments section:

  • If climate change ethics presupposes the relationality of all beings, can you cite the examples from your experience of ill-considered responses to climate change?

  • Why do you think should people be held responsible for “failing to act in responding to climate change”?

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This article is from the free online course:

Climate Justice: Lessons from the Global South