The Ethics of Climate Change
Right and Wrong in a Warming World

The debate about the existence of climate change seems finally at an end. We now have to decide what to do about it.  In The Ethics of Climate Change, James Garvey argues that the ultimate rationale for action on climate change cannot be simply economic, political, scientific or social, though no doubt our decisions should be informed by such things. Instead, climate change is largely a moral problem. What we should do about it depends on what matters to us and what we think is right.

This book considers both climate science and moral philosophy, ultimately finding a way into the many possible positions associated with climate change. It is also a call for action, for doing something about the moral demands placed on both governments and individuals by the fact of climate change. It is a book about choices, responsibility, and where the moral weight falls on our warming world.


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You can order the book in the US here and in the UK here.

Here is a short review of the book in the Guardian.

There's a bit here on the connection between the moral demand for state action and individual action on climate change, written for The Philosopher's Magazine.

Here is an interview on Nigel Warburton's Virtual Philosopher about the book.  It says something about the general moral case for action on climate change.

You can listen to a podcast about the book for Ethics Bites.  I get grilled a bit.

You can read a case for the claim that climate change is a moral problem for all of us, written for Culture Wars.

You can read a review in The Philosopher's Magazine.

There's a short review at Lifegoggles and a long review at Climaticide Chronicles.

You can read a series of guest blogs laying out the moral case for action on climate change for the New Statesman.

You can consider the difference between shoplifting tequila and using fossil fuels, and also the role of justice in thoughts about climate change, in a talking point for Environmental Research Web.

There's a round table discussion off the Bali climate deal for International Affairs Forum.  I'm underwhelmed.

I contribute to the The Philosopher's Magazine Blog about once a week.  Many posts are about climate change in particular or ethics in general.

You can read another book, a book about philosophy books.  There's a review in the Times Literary Supplement.   

You can get in touch by emailing garveyethics at gmail dot com.

'The Ethics of Climate Change is a model of philosophical reasoning about one of the greatest moral challenges any generation has ever faced.  If you don't yet know why you should be morally outraged about the present situation, read this book.  Calmly, carefully, with well-marshalled facts and sound argument, Garvey shows us just how badly the nations of the industrialized world -- and the citizens of those nations -- are behaving.  He also tells us what we need to do about it.'

-- Peter Singer, Ira W DeCamp Professor of Bioethics, Princeton University


'Essential reading for anyone interested in the urgent moral questions raised by our climate crisis.'

-- Mark Lynas, Author of Six Degrees:  Our Future on a Hotter Planet


'Written in plain English, Garvey's excellent book makes accessiblle to the reader the ethical issues surrounding global warming, and the literature too.  It should figure on all relevant reading lists.'

-- Robin Attfield, Professor of Philosophy, Cardiff University


'Open this book and James Garvey is right there making real sense to you.  A new philosopher doing logic in the world.  In a necessary conversation, capturing you to the very end.'

-- Ted Honderich, Grote Professor Emeritus, University College London