Result of Global Warming

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We are currently experiencing a threat that will have a huge impact and shape our future. Global warning already has a negative response to our planet and the people who live in it. We can easily assume that our current way of life has caused global warming, and it will only get worse from here. In this essay I will talk about how we each have a moral obligation to try preventing and not contribute to global warming, and a utilitarian’s thought on climate change.

“Climate change caused by the behavior of human beings affects the lives and well-being of hundreds of millions of people now and into the foreseeable future.” (Wolff, 2018, p. 457) This is not surprising because of the amount of greenhouse gas that we use, more specifically carbon dioxide. When reviewing the utilitarian theory, moral actions are to maximize the pleasure and minimize the pain of those effected. Utilitarianism tells us how what it is ethical maximizes total happiness while reducing total pain. “…the happiness which forms the utilitarianism standard of what is right in conduct, it not the agent’s own happiness, but that of all concerned.” (Wolff, 2018, p. 146) So, the main idea of utilitarian ethics is to ensure the greatest good for the majority. As climate change will eventually impact us all, an act utilitarian will act in a way that would maximize pleasure and minimize pain amongst humans, not just now but in years to come as well.

For example, if you were to eat a hamburger, it would only give you 5 – 10 minutes of pleasure while you eat it and soon be forgotten once you’re done eating, whereas you could eat a soy burger. Would you be doing your part to save the environment by eating the soy burger? Studies have shown that it takes nearly 15 times the amount of water to make a beef hamburger than it does a soy burger, now seeing as how there are many parts of the world lack access to fresh water, if we make small changes like switching to soy instead is a step in the right direction. A utilitarian would agree as the switch from beef to soy maximizes pleasure on a much larger scale “… since utility includes not solely the pursuit of happiness, but the prevention or mitigation of unhappiness.” (Wolff, 2018, p. 145). Unfortunately, global warming will continue regardless of ones own personal actions as it would require many people to join in and help combat greenhouse gases and extreme temperature changes “Human life and civilization depends on a stable climate system and the means to protect against extreme weather.” (Wolff, 2018, p. 458)

According to Aldo Leopold we do not consider soil valuable and he goes on further to say “that man-made changes are of a different order than evolutionary changes, and have more comprehensive than is intended or foreseen.” (Wolff, 2018, p. 451) This is true because if we look at farms, if farmers add products to enhance the growth of their crops or animals, eventually some of it will end up in the soil, and that amount will eventually accumulate and not only is that having a negative effect humans that consume the products but also effects the ecological chain.

In this essay I talked about how we each have a moral obligation to try preventing and not contribute to global warming and a utilitarian’s thought on climate change.

Cities around the world account for two-thirds of the world’s energy demand and 70% of the energy-related carbon dioxide emissions. Without efforts to lessen per capita energy use, these values are expected to continue to increase alongside growing urban populations.

Local governments can influence energy use in their communities through a variety of policy and program options. These governments can serve as role models for their communities by promoting energy efficiency in their own operations or participating in national energy efficiency programs, such as DOE’s “Better Buildings Challenge.” Moreover, they can directly motivate residents through interactive energy-saving campaigns, alter mobility behavior, and encourage efficient appliance purchases.

However, as far as past records show, attempts to encourage people to adopt pro-environmental behavior often achieve only limited success. Only a few cities in the US have created systematic plans to respond to climate change. City-scale participation to combat global warming is a unique social problem that requires substantial investment of finances and labor to protect against weather events that are both unpredictable and thought to be far in the future. However, high costs combined with uncertain beliefs about the future usually do not lead to rapid policy decisions or implementation in both the local and national level.

Despite such proposed hardships, across the US, local governments are increasingly designing and implementing energy efficiency programs that aim to change behaviors in order to save energy. With sufficient knowledge gathered upon research of college students and small communities, there are many suggestions and ways local governments can get actively involved with their people in combatting climate change.

In a local government, energy efficiency program administrators can design programs that encourage people to change their behavior in order to reduce energy consumption without disrupting their daily life. These programs change behaviors using principles based on social or behavioral science, in contrast to programs relying solely on incentives, rebates, taxes, or other policies. Several studies with actual communities list a myriad of examples of these programs and other evaluation and interaction mechanisms are also well elaborated through step-by-step analyses.

In sum, local governments may face challenges in terms of funding and staff capacity that impact their ability to design an effective behavior change program against climate change. However, by conducting preliminary research and doing up-front evaluation design, local governments can, early in the process, develop deeper insights into effective strategies and methods and ensure proper data collection and program evaluation. Ultimately, behavior change that increases energy efficiency can actually benefit local governments as they aim to achieve climate change mitigation and other closely related goals, and many local governments have opportunities to expand their local energy efficiency to include behavior change programs. Thus, expanding programs for the public on a local level can be easily incentivized and carried out in order to reduce per capita emissions across the US. 

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Result Of Global Warming. (2022, Apr 02). Retrieved July 19, 2024 , from

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