Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Climate is a public goods

Climate change is one of the greatest problems in the world. We have to address it in some ways for better future. Otherwise, it is possible our descendents will not survide the next era.

My past entry: Climate change and rising of sea level

However, it is said that many people are indifferent to this issue.

One of the reasons is that we hardly feel exactly that our environment is rapidly changing. Indeed, less people believe that modern climate change is attributable to human activity than experts.

My past entry: The gap between scientists and the public

But, the problem is deeper. Even if they are concerned, only a few people take an action, according to the media report. The gap between our worrying and the attitude in real is discussed.

A study suggests that whether a person takes a public action on the situation depends on the sense of them how many people are going to do the same thing and how much their action seems to be really effective. This result is quite natural, because nobody is willing to do an act which is likely not to gain other people's approval.

The Washington Post: Why even the people who worry the most about climate change often take little action

Considering this fact, protest against climate change is very difficult to be spread. There are few people who dare to spend much time to public action. Also, it is unsure such actions will be able to change the future. Even if our challenges is rewarded, it will be proven several years after now.

There is another theory to explain why actions for stabilizing climate is not popular. Stabilized climate is deemed as a public goods in the economic context. Thus, climate is concerned to everyone regardless he or she is contributing to its stabilization. In this case, nobody has an incentive to invest for stabilized climate because you can be a free rider when other people make efforts to acheive the goal. Therefore, such actions never become acitvated.

To develop public goods, governmental intervention is necessary. To address the issur of climate change, strong leaderships and international collaboration are indispensable. I hardly believe personal efforts compensate for them.

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