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Climate Change and the Moral AgentIndividual Duties in an Interdependent World$
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Elizabeth Cripps

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199665655

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199665655.001.0001

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Harming and Protecting Non-Humans

Harming and Protecting Non-Humans

(p.85) 4 Harming and Protecting Non-Humans
Climate Change and the Moral Agent

Elizabeth Cripps

Oxford University Press

This chapter extends the sphere of moral concern beyond the human. The non-intentionalist model is expanded to include at least sentient nonhuman animals as members of collectivities. The collectivised no-harm principle and principles of beneficence are extended to sentient nonhuman animals, yielding highly counterintuitive implications. This prompts a further expansion, to include duties to (or at least duties or protect or not to destroy) species or ecosystems. This is applied to the climate change case and the non-identity problem is re-evaluated. A challenge is raised: rather than three broadly mutually fulfillable weakly collective duties, we face conflicting but morally salient reasons for collective action on climate change, and will have to trade the interests of humans, individual animals, and species or systems off against one another.

Keywords:   climate change, nonhuman animals, species, ecosystems, conflicting claims, non-identity problem

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