Publication details

Privatization of Responsibility for Climate Change: A Promising Way?


KALA Lukáš

Year of publication 2012
Type Article in Proceedings
Conference Ecological Theology And Environmental Ethics Vol.2
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Social Studies

Field Philosophy and religion
Keywords ecology theology responsibility climate change
Description Environmental responsibility is among the most urgent societal challenges of our times. In upcoming article I discuss the problematic nature of individual responsibility adequately dealing with environmental (climatic) issues. While searching the internet I found countless blogs describing lifestyle changes motivated by climate change. I will pose examples of individuals living as climate-responsible persons. Readers are encouraged to take personal responsibility for climate change and environmental degradation by making life style changes. Theirs action illustrates great social change, when responsibility is delegated from the powerful actors (politicians, corporations) to individual citizens. I posed following questions to myself: “Can individual citizens bear responsibility for global environmental problems as climatic change?” “Should everyone be held responsible for global problems?” Where are barriers of individual responsibility? Does a new type of ethics emerge? From Christian point of view: Isn't it a kind of haughitness to be responsible for all the word by oneself (God equally)? This paper aims to clarify the meaning of the term individualization of environmental responsibility, and presents opposing approaches to the process of privatization of environmental responsibility. From the literature, I deduce that environmental responsibility is a form of virtue, and can be developed only if certain prerequisites are fulfilled. I base my work on arguments written in ethical books of Judaeo-Christian authors like Jonas, Lévinas and Arendt. Upcoming paper will describe the necessity of an interdisciplinary approach to responsibility understanding. I incline to the opinion that that activities such as green consumerism, passive membership of environmental groups, and domestic recycling cannot be taken as the sole way of responsible behaviour.
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