We want to gain a deeper understanding of which animals are most vulnerable to climate change.
First, we want to consider the effects of climate change on animals: How are wild animals, sedentary animals, migratory animals, companion animals, and many others affected by forces of climate change, such as drought, the encroaching rise in sea levels, availability of food, accessibility of space, habitability, maintenance of borders, and securitization? Climate change also creates winners, so are there animals who will be better off? Will climate change do more good or harm to animals, and how can we tell?
Second, we will examine how humanity’s actions in response to climate change are affecting animals: Are there examples of how either mitigation or adaptation strategies/policies have been explicitly designed to reduce harmful impacts on animals? Do these examples raise moral dilemmas – for example, do they involve sacrificing the interests of individual animals to benefit the species (as in captive breeding or forced relocation)? Are there examples of how mitigation/adaptation policies are in fact exacerbating the harmful impacts for particular animals (or where policies designed to benefit certain animals impose costs on other animals)? Stepping back from individual policies, are there examples of how animals’ interests are being institutionalized within decision-making processes around climate change (e.g., via animal representatives or advocates or audits)?
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