December 7, 2021

CRITIQUE-PTRG Seminar The Emission Connection Model: Defining Individual Responsibilities to Remove Carbon – 8 December 2021, 3 pm

This is a pre-read, virtual seminar with Hanna Schuebel (Environmental Humanities, University of Fribourg, Switzerland). Hanna is presenting a draft paper in which she develops an account of individuals’ responsibilities to remove carbon from the atmosphere with carbon dioxide removal (CDR) technologies.

The upscaling of CDR to reach states’ net-zero targets will make it possible for the individual to remove emissions by purchasing carbon removal certificates. This way, individuals can reduce their carbon footprint to zero. However, today’s carbon removal schemes face at least two problems; firstly, assigning individuals a duty to remove their emissions and, secondly, excluding the morally relevant side-effects of CDR technologies. In response, the paper offers a model of individuals’ responsibilities to remove emissions, the Emission Connection Model (ECM). The model consists of two concepts of individuals’ responsibility: a shared responsibility for carbon removal and a responsibility to remove harmful emissions. These two qualitatively different responsibilities are interlinked. Concerns of justice and social structures play a crucial role in determining both the responsibilities to remove carbon that fall on the individual, as well as how CDR technologies should be implemented

To receive the paper and link to the event, please email The event is co-sponsored with the Political Theory Research Group at the University of Edinburgh.