Ecological Ethics

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Public discussion is needed around the ecological inequality that arises from health and social care which comes with high ecological costs and is prevalent in the affluent countries.  All public services come with a high ecological cost, this is one of the reasons that a relatively poor person living in an affluent country will still have a high ecological footprint.  The approach to health and social care in affluent countries also brings with it emotional costs, both for the invalid and their relatives, as the natural process of death is often interrupted and prolonged in an extremely challenging manner.

Projects relating to scaling down and altering expectations from public institutions are key to devolving the responsibility for long-term survival to local communities.  These projects need to inspire and engage local communities so they are empowered to imagine the way forward from our current predicament.  Much of the judicial and retail services that maintain the current civilisation would be greatly reduced in a society focussing on minimal consumption.  Any projects that are rethinking travel, leisure, education, in fact any aspect of modern life, with a view to minimising our ecological demands, will help to maximise mitigation. 

Challenging Assumptions – The UN Charter for Ecological Justice challenges the assumption that a rich person or country is entitled to spend or make their money however they wish. It challenges the assumption that country is entitled to employ an ecocidal socio-economic model. It questions the justice of countries subsisting with very high ecological footprint which are clearly contributing far more to climate and ecosystems breakdown than the low consuming countries. It raises all sorts of ethical questions that have never been subject to global debate.

Publicity regarding Ecological Injustice – Any project that will allow this proposed Charter to be aired and discussed publicly will go a long way to raising awareness about the fact that affluent countries are only reaping financial rewards by an ongoing process of degrading the global environment.

The Ethics of Eco-Costly Health, Social Care and Housing – The Covid vaccination strategy in the global North served to earn big profits for pharmaceutical companies and providers of Personal Protection equipment. Where this strategy saved lives, they were usually lives in the eco-costly affluent part of the world. From the perspective of a world in escalating ecosystems collapse there are strong grounds to challenge the ethics of this strategy.

Projects that bring any of the ecological aspects relating to these topics into the public debate are welcomed. The book Saving Us From Ourselves is free to download; chapters 6, 7, 8 and 10 look at different aspects of the ecological cost of health, social care and housing. The author has successfully used some of her personal income to experiment with the idea of providing reparation, an idea hinted at in the book. This was done by funding education about prudent family planning to relieve pressure on the environment in Malawi. Malawi have been hard-hit in 2022/3 by cyclones that are more extreme than ever experienced in living memory. This collaboration was so successful that it inspired an application to the UN SDG Action Awards 2023. Nowadays the Malawi government openly address the issue of overpopulation in their country, in this respect they are leading the world by setting a Degrowth objective. The book was essentially part of a personal journey to try and persuade humanity to seek to achieve maximum mitigation from climate and ecological collapse, in a peaceful and equitable manner.

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