Science can inform, but it cannot arbitrate, it cannot decide. Science can say that if we burn another half-trillion tons of carbon the atmospheric content of carbon dioxide will go up by another 100 ppm and that will almost certainly lead to a warming of the planet greater than 2C, with major disruption of the climate system and huge risks for the natural world and human wellbeing. But it can’t answer moral questions.
Do we care about the poor? Do we care about future generations? Do we see the environment as part of the economy, or the economy as part of the environment? The whole point about climate change is that, despite having been revealed by science, it is not really about science. It is about what sort of world we want to live in and what kind of future we want to create.
Chris Rapley and Duncan Macmillan for The Guardian (November 22, 2014)