Another short treatment of GDRs, in German. This time in Kurswechsel (Zeitschrift fur gesellschafts-, wirtschafts- und umweltpolitische Alternativen) in the context of a symposium on climate change and distributive justice. It looks good, and we wish we could read it. Alas, only one other piece is in English — Climate Change, Industrial Policies, and the way out of the crisis.
The definitive (academic philosophical) climate ethics reader was just published by Oxford University Press, and we’re happy to say that it contains a chapter on GDRs. The book is Climate Ethics: Essential Readings, and it’s edited by Stephen Gardiner, Simon Caney, Dale Jamieson and Henry Shue.
The GDRs essay is “Greenhouse Development Rights: A Framework for Climate Protection that is ‘More Fair’ than Equal per Capita Emissions Rights,” a focus that makes good sense given the state of the philosophical debate. (Peter Singer also has an essay, “One Atmosphere,” in which he defends the per-capita approach.)
Paul Baer, of the GDRs author’s group, also has a second chapter all his own, one called ‘Adaptation: Who Pays Whom?”
The essay version, but this time in German!
The book, edited by Martin Voss, is Der Klimawandel: Sozialwissenschaftliche Perspektiven.
The last year has seen a massive uptick — under the signs of “carbon debt” and “historical responsibility” and even, in rhetorically extreme cases, “reparations” — in the amount of attention being paid to the problem of inequality between nations, in the context of the global climate policy debate.
Much less systematic attention — again in the context of the global climate policy debate (as opposed to domestic debates, where thanks to the environmental justice movement the topic is very much in play) — has been paid to the problem of inequality within nations. This article, The Greenhouse Development Rights Framework: Drawing attention to inequality within nations in the global climate policy debate, just released by Development and Change (by invitation for special issue on climate change and capitalism), thus begins to fill a very large, and very important hole.
It is difficult to overstate the importance of Going Clean, which was produced by a high-level group that included analysts from both the West and the Chinese Economists 50 Forum. Nor is it easy to overstate the role that the GDRs analysis plays in Going Green’s underlying analysis of the climate challenge.
Among its most notable points, Going Green provides a clear estimate the emissions budget that would be available to China in a world that was seriously committed to holding the 2ºC line:
“If the industrialized (Annex 1) countries were to commit to more ambitious targets of reducing their emissions to 40 per cent below 1990 levels by 2020, and 95 per cent below 1990 levels by 2050, their future emissions would amount to 200 Gt CO2. This would leave 460 Gt CO2 for the non-Annex 1 countries. If we assume that China’s part of this remaining budget is proportional to its share of current non-Annex 1 emissions, its future budget would be 220 Gt CO2.”
Just as significantly, it shows that this is an achievable goal, though only in the context of a fair global regime. [Read more…]