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Climate Change and National Self-Interest
Linköping University, Department of Culture and Communication, Centre for Applied Ethics. Linköping University, Department of Culture and Communication, Arts and Humanities. Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences.
2016 (English)In: Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics, ISSN 1187-7863, E-ISSN 1573-322X, Vol. 29, no 6, 1043-1055 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Mitigation of climate change is often described as a tragedy of the commons. According to this theoretical framework, it is collectively rational for present-generation countries to mitigate climate change, but not individually rational to do so. It is rather in national self-interest to ‘free-ride’ on the mitigation actions of other countries. In this paper, I discuss two arguments criticizing this view. According to these arguments, it is in most cases individually rational for present-generation countries to mitigate, i.e., it is in their national self-interest. The first argument focuses on national self-interest in terms of economic efficiency, the second on national self-interest in terms of national security. I conclude that the critical arguments to a large extent are tenable, but that they seem to underestimate the significance of those cases in which it is not in national self-interest to mitigate climate change. In these cases the tragedy of the commons framework is still applicable.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer, 2016. Vol. 29, no 6, 1043-1055 p.
Keyword [en]
Climate change, Economic efficiency, Mitigation, National security, Self-interest
National Category
Ethics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-132599DOI: 10.1007/s10806-016-9646-3OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-132599DiVA: diva2:1046930
Available from: 2016-11-15 Created: 2016-11-15 Last updated: 2016-11-22Bibliographically approved

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Nordgren, Anders
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