Energy Efficiency and Conservation as Ethical Responsibilities: Suggestions for IPCC Working Group III

16 Pages Posted: 6 Feb 2008  

John C. Dernbach

Widener University - Commonwealth Law School

Date Written: December 14, 2007

Abstract

This paper provides a brief assessment of the ethical issues raised by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) Working Group III report, Mitigation of Climate Change. It argues that energy efficiency and conservation are not simply two more options that can be employed to address climate change; they are the most equitable and sustainable options. The other major options available to address climate change are direct reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, long-term storage of carbon, and adaptation. The paper argues that Working Group III should issue a special report in the near future assessing the potential of energy efficiency and conservation to contribute to stabilization of greenhouse gas emissions in the next ten years. It also argues that Working Group III should directly address developed country leadership in future reports, especially on per capita energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions.

Keywords: United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Working Group III, Mitigation of Climate Change, climate change, equity, ethics, energy efficiency, energy conservation, common but differentiated responsibilities, sustainable development

JEL Classification: K32, K33

Suggested Citation

Dernbach, John C., Energy Efficiency and Conservation as Ethical Responsibilities: Suggestions for IPCC Working Group III (December 14, 2007). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1089423 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1089423

John C. Dernbach (Contact Author)

Widener University - Commonwealth Law School ( email )

3800 Vartan Way
Harrisburg, PA 17110-9380
United States

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