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Climate Justice and Historical Responsibility

Bou-Habib, Paul (2019) 'Climate Justice and Historical Responsibility.' The Journal of Politics. ISSN 0022-3816

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Abstract

Many agree that developed states must bear greater burdens in tacking climate change than developing states for two reasons: their greater historical responsibility for global warming and their greater wealth. People disagree, however, about the relative importance of these two reasons. This article develops an "institutional view" to address this issue, which consists of two claims. First, many past emissions of greenhouse gases that took place prior to the establishment of legitimate institutions of global climate governance do not give rise to climate related duties. Secondly, the absence of legitimate institutional global governance, more generally, undermines full rights to wealth on the part of developed states and thus removes an objection to their having to contribute more to tackling the challenges of climate change. The upshot is that, at present, climate duties should be allocated between states mainly on the basis of wealth rather than history.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Climate change, Historical responsibility, Justice, Global institutions, Rawls
Subjects: J Political Science > JA Political science (General)
Divisions: Faculty of Social Sciences > Government, Department of
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 05 Sep 2018 11:20
Last Modified: 09 Jul 2019 12:15
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/22167

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