Honors_essay-1 - In the debate over climate change, should...

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In the debate over climate change, should developing countries be allowed to emit without many restrictions and the developed world bear most of the burden, or should both developing and developed countries bear similar burdens Seldom has a topic engendered such polarizing opinions or galvanized so many demographics as the debate over global climate change has. Liberals, conservatives, businessmen, students, and scientists all seem to have an opinion and all fight to make their voice be heard the loudest. At this stage in scientific research, most would agree that greenhouse gas emissions and the increase in carbon dioxide harm the earth in many ways. The deviation in thought begins with how to deal with the problem of global warming and who should foot the bill. The problem may appear to be so intractable because of the parasitic relationship between developed and developing countries and the disproportionate power wielded by the former; prosperous nations flood money into resource-rich but technologically-poor countries in order to extract as much valuable oil or mineral as possible. In return, poor countries receive nominal compensation when compared to how much profit the foreign powers take in. Furthermore, these poor countries are left with no self-sustaining infrastructure so they have to continue to rely on the developed countries—even if it creates terrible, life threatening ecological conditions. An entire continent, Africa, has already been devastated by documented global climate change yet almost nothing has been done by international organizations. Given this reality, one is forced to leave the cold, hard world of the numbers and dollars involved in controlling global warming and approach the matter from an ethical standpoint asking the question: is it worth it to gain riches at the cost of destroying not only land but human lives? When considering the empirical data along with the moral implications associated with global climate change, developed countries such as the United States, China, and Australia should not only reduce their emissions but also appropriate funding for the developing nations so that the international economical and technological playing can achieve some sort of equilibrium. The standard argument underdeveloped countries have for compensation assumes that developed countries should bear the costs associated with global warming because they have been the ones largely responsible for degrading the global environment. While such an argument is attractive because of its objective equity, it must be explored further. In their book, Ethics and
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Honors_essay-1 - In the debate over climate change, should...

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