For decades now, climate change is one of the most discussed problems about the environment and has aroused lots of scholarly interest in several quarters.

The effect of climate change is quite apparent ranging from the continuous rise in the earth’s surface temperature by 0.85-degree centigrade. The increase in temperatures links to the emission of greenhouse gases in increasing levels to the atmosphere due to an increase in the intensity of anthropogenic activities.

Climate change and Politics

A picture showing before climate change and after

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The effects of climate change are not alleviating; instead, it is extending beyond the boundaries of environmental and weather elements. Evidence to buttress this lies in the fact that climate change has altered our economic, cultural as well as our political spheres. It has put lots of pressure on our political institutions, challenged established ethical theories, gone against the established principles of distributive justice and have changed the content of the relationship between man and the environment.

Through this relationship means, climate change has assumed the core topic of political theory.  The shift has several implications which include the relative decline in the magnitude of importance attached to nature itself. Also, on the other hand, this shift has birthed a series of research around global environmental politics. This shift has placed the politics of climate change under the limelight of research within the larger sphere of international relations. It has become an anchor point of an extensive body of knowledge which involves biology, geography, law, history as well as economics. Numerous research has made climate change a more complex phenomenon prompting several studies emanating from divergent approaches.

In a bid to have a more uniform response, a policy, as well as a strategy to address the problem of climate change, is increasing the concept of the political theory of climate change.

What exactly is a Political theory?

Political theory is a discipline that is concerned or interested in a political action which is brought about by a group of people, their identities, the societal ripple effect produced by actions as well as institution that they influence. It is also an aspect of knowledge in which the prospective source of action deducts or identifies via observation of historical occurrences, such that assumptions within this regard are not treated with levity but verified carefully.

The effects of the political theory of climate change

Light bulb with a question mark

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The political theory of climate change, according to scholars seeks to address the issue of climate change first as a political problem. It focuses on provoking a political response from the domestic and international fronts, as well as providing insights into the possible consequences of negligence.

It presents useful tools that could help that could help adequately understand impediments to fair and effective climate change policies. Political theorists in some quarters are of the opinion that when appropriately employed will sufficiently address the issue of distributive justice with regards the allocation of emission reduction commitments, especially among the industrialized nations.

It also evaluates the complicated relationship between the polity and provides insight pertaining to the impact of climate change on social institutions and possible practices that can be employed to handle these issues.

Even though exploring the political theory of climate change is waiting to happen, numerous political theorist is confident that it will play a pivotal role in the development of a global uniform approach to mitigate the effects of climate change.


Political scientists of MIT claim that the political theory presents useful tools.  These tools can help us understand the obstacles to fair and effective global climate change policies. Plus offer a selection of innovative and integrative scholarly efforts to do so. Illuminating the variety of political, economic, and social problems caused by global warming, the book, “Political Theory and Climate Change” by Steve Vanderheiden, applies a range of theoretical approaches and methodologies. Ranging from analytic philosophy, constitutional, and legal theory to neo-Marxism and critical theory. This uses climate change as a case to test standard regular and experimental premises.

The book first looks at distributive justice concerns raised by climate change. These concerns include a quota of the standard climate and how to establish the policy. This policy examines the complex relationships between climate change and society, including the way that social institutions and practices construct, reinforce, aim to address, and the disruption of climatic instability. Showing how political theory challenges and is challenged by global climate change, the book both demonstrates and evaluates innovative approaches in the developing field of environmental, political theory.

The key to having a healthy climate is gaining knowledge on how to better our environment and how to communicate.

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