PHIL 224, Week 8

Guest lecture:

Exam 2 is Nov. 3, in class.

Structure: same as exam 1, 4 short answers and short essay. Only weeks 5-8 are covered.

Review questions are available at the end of the lecture notes, including Jim Jordan's.

How to do well:

  1. Come to class and pay attention.
  2. Do not use laptops or other electronics, for these reasons.
  3. Read the text carefully and critically.
  4. Prepare detailed answers to review questions (note updates to review questions for weeks 5 and 6).

International Environmental Justice (Peter Penz)


Canada benefits from exports of asbestos, with health hazards to developing countries. CBC article.

Other issues of environmental justice: pollution, fresh water, food, climate change.

Distributive Justice

  1. Distributive justice concerns the allocation of the benefits and burdens of economic activity. Stanford Encyclopedia article.
  2. Environmental justice: benefits and burdens with respect to the environment.
  3. Harm principle: harming others is wrong and must be compensated. Self-determination, non-interference.
  4. Sharing principle: benefits and burdens should be shared equally.
  5. Compare Cragg and Schwartz from week 6: Principle: The costs of resource development should be born by those who will reap its benefits.
  6. Tension: libertarian versus egalitarian values. Intermediate: utilitarian and difference principle.
  7. Needs principle: people in all countries should have vital needs satisfied.

International Justice

Are countries morally responsible for their actions, or just the people who run them?

Countries have actions that impact other countries, e.g. pollution, trade, .

Question: where does property come from? Rights to acquisition and transfer?

Global Warming

Some countries may benefit from global warming, e.g. Canada.

But poor countries will suffer (from CNN).

Key dispute (Kyoto, Cophenhagen): Which countries should limit carbon emissions?

How do the harm, sharing, and needs principles apply to global warming?

Arguments Against Equal Sharing of Resources

  1. Land has been been legitimately acquired and transferred.
  2. Some countries have depleted their resources.
  3. Well-being requires security of tenure.

Review Questions for Week 8

  1. According to Penz, what are the two main principles of international environmental justice? Describe how each would apply to a current dispute such as asbestos or climate change.
  2. What are the three arguments that Penz considers against sharing environmental resources and what are his responses?
  3. Essay: From the ethical perspectives of consequences and rights, should countries be required to share their environental benefits and burdens?
    1. statement of at least two alternatives
    2. consequences pro and con, and evaluation
    3. rights and duties, pro and con, and evaluation
    4. overall evaluation.

Phil 224

Paul Thagard

Computational Epistemology Laboratory.

This page updated Oct. 31, 2011