•  407
    Sympathy for Cecil: gender, trophy hunting, and the western environmental imaginary
    Journal of Political Ecology 27 (1): 759-774. 2020.
    This article draws from political ecology and ecofeminism to examine sympathy, expressed by record-breaking donations from North Americans, for the death of Cecil the Lion. The overlapping normative critique offered by these two perspectives together demonstrates how sympathy is disclosive of power relations. Sympathy reveals, relies upon, and reinforces different forms of gender, racial, and neocolonial domination; especially when western sympathy remains ignorant of the power relations, includ…Read more
  •  82
    What’s the Harm in Climate Change?
    Ethics, Policy and Environment 20 (1): 103-117. 2017.
    A popular argument against direct duties for individuals to address climate change holds that only states and other powerful collective agents must act. It excuses individual actions as harmless since they are neither necessary nor sufficient to cause harm, arise through normal activity, and have no clear victims. Philosophers have challenged one or more of these assumptions; however, I show that this definition of harm also excuses states and other collective agents. I cite two examples of this…Read more
  •  46
    Sharing Responsibility for Divesting from Fossil Fuels
    Environmental Values 26 (6): 693-710. 2017.
    Governments have been slow to address climate change. If non-governmental agents share a responsibility in light of the slow pace of government action then it is a collective responsibility. I examine three models of collective responsibility, especially Iris Young's social connection model, and assess their value for identifying a collective, among all emitters, that can share responsibility. These models can help us better understand both the growth of the movement to divest from fossil fuels …Read more
  •  36
    Colleges and universities already contribute significantly to the fight against climate change, but the UN has recently called upon them to do even more. The purpose of this article is to demonstrate that institutions of higher education play a unique role in combatting climate change and other structural injustices, not only by conducting research and disseminating knowledge, but also by fostering a form of collective political responsibility. A philosophical analysis of different forms of coll…Read more
  •  34
    We constantly forget our interdependence with nature as we lose track of what “natural” means. Consider especially the American nostalgia for an imagined past believed to be lost; a past in which our relationship with nature was more authentic, more natural. Yet, as I argue below, such a past never really existed. The scary thing is, so long as that nostalgia guides our desire for a return to a “proper” relationship with nature, we’re bound to be misguided and forget again and again, no matter h…Read more
  •  22
    To Trump’s Chagrin, Non-nationals Are Still In
    Ethics, Policy and Environment 21 (1): 42-44. 2018.
    The anti-environmental policies of the Trump administration are morally disturbing, to say the least. The willful ignorance of basic scientific facts and shameless pandering to the very industries...
  •  19
    I discuss the energy democracy movement and its call to expand democratic power over energy production, distribution, and development. In addition to sparking wildfires and driving climate change, the world’s energy system is linked to a host of justice issues. A commitment to a robust conception of democracy and social sustainability is the best way to guard against replicating those injustices as the world transitions to a renewable energy system. Philosophers can say much more about the value…Read more
  •  14
    Olmsted was an influential landscape architect whose works include many parks, recreation grounds and more. Inspired by Romantic and transcendentalist thinkers, he developed ‘pastoral transcendentalism’, a style of designing parks that mimicked natural spaces to reproduce their values within cities. Although environmental justice scholars have pointed out how these designs limit access to parks, I argue that environmental philosophers have not adequately discussed Olmsted, particularly his axiol…Read more
  • Divestment is a Shared Responsibility
    In Bob Fischer (ed.), College Ethics A Reader on Moral Issues that Affect You (2nd Ed), Oxford University Press. pp. 515-530. 2020.
    I argue that Iris Young’s concept of social connection responsibility is helpful for thinking about collective responsibility to address climate change. It also offers good reasons why Institutes of Higher Education in particular should divest their fossil fuel holdings.