Portrait of the Norwegian philosopher Arne Naess and the Deep Ecology Movement. Made in 1997 by Rerun Productions, The Netherlands. Shot on location in Naess’s hut Tvergastein on the Hardangervidda mountain plateau, and in Berkeley, USA. With Bill Devall, Vandana Shiva, George Sessions, Helena Norberg-Hodge, and Harold Glasser. 51 minutes
Avram Hiller (left) and Walter Sinnott-Armstrong (right) on anthropogenic climate change.
Earth’s climate is changing as a result of human emissions of greenhouse gases (GHGs). How much of this is your fault? For instance, suppose you go on a Sunday drive in a gas-guzzling car just for fun. Then have you done any harm? Sinnott-Armstrong argues (starting at 9:43) that such an action is utterly harmless. But Hiller argues that every GHG-emitting activity—even one Sunday drive—is quantifiably harmful. After discussing their disagreement, Hiller and Sinnott-Armstrong consider a range of other philosophical issues related to climate change: the moral significance of nature (25:32); the ethics of species destruction (31:03); the influence of evolution on our moral intuitions (41:33); and the connections between global warming and global poverty (52:54).
“Climate Change and Individual Responsibility” (2011)
“Morally Significant Effects of Ordinary Actions” (2011)
“It’s Not My Fault: Global Warming and Individual Moral Obligations,” in Sinnott-Armstrong and Howarth (eds.), Perspectives on Climate Change: Science, Economics, Politics, Ethics, Vol. 5 (2005)
In this conversation, Dale Jamieson and Jay Odenbaugh discuss how climate change raises novel philosophical concerns and underscores traditional ones. Climate change, they explain, poses a challenge for both consequentialism and its alternatives, and brings out questions about our obligations to future generations and about the moral status of non-humans. Further, the public controversy over climate science involves questions about the epistemology of testimony, the value-neutrality of science, and action under uncertainty. Produced by Philosophy TV.