The U.S.'s Role in Climate Change. Paper Example

Published: 2024-01-14
The U.S.'s Role in Climate Change. Paper Example
Essay type:  Problem solution essays
Categories:  YouTube Ecology Water Pollution Climate change
Pages: 7
Wordcount: 1705 words
15 min read

Question 1: Arguments and Objections to Videos

In the YouTube video titled Prolific The Rapper x A Tribe Called Red - Black Snakes [Updated], the artist sang about the Indigenous people’s struggles to save the planet from the effects of climate change in Turtle Island. In his song, the rapper advocated for the equal distribution of water among the Indigenous populations. In his several premises, the rapper concludes that change is coming.

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One of the key arguments made in the video is that every human needs clean water to survive. Polus (2011) indicated that land degradation in turtle Island is depleting natural resources and resulting in water scarcity. His conclusion is that change is coming. From the rapper’s song, suppose everyone needs clean water to survive; the conclusion can be arguable if some people in the community are too afraid to fight for their land to embrace that change.

The second argument is that we live in a system that experiences continued destruction, and nothing new is happening. In his article, Gardiner (2009) argued that it is necessary to tackle climate change to help preserve future generations. In response to the rapper’s premise, the objection and counter argument is that if the system is experiencing continued destruction, his conclusion that change is coming might be arguable because the indigenous people need an additional way of understanding climate change threats to find other strategies to protect the environment.

The third argument is that the government is destroying the environment to make money through oil companies. Eherenfield (n.d) indicated that the future of diversity is dominated by economic realities, such as industrial enterprises. From watching the video, the objection to the rapper’s argument is that placing an economic value on environmental degradation is not the right way to handle it. The counter-objection to the statement is that the indigenous conservationists need to understand that biodiversity is their warrant for continued survival.

In the YouTube Video, Militant French Eco-Activists Protest Deforestation: Fight for the Forest, groups of activists are defending the protection of forests in South France. One of the key arguments presented in the video is that building the dam will result to deforestation, which damages the natural ecosystems in the forest. Protestors in the video argue that deforestation is leading to the loss of habitat for the animals that live in the forest. An objection to the argument is that the dam will be beneficial to the area because it will provide irrigation. The counter objection is that it is a fallacy to argue that dams will damage the ecosystem when, on the real sense, they will provide water for irrigation.

The second argument in the video is that France has lost almost all of its forest, and the government’s directive to continue cutting down more trees will lead to environmental degradation. An objection to the argument is similar to the one mentioned above, that building dam will not destroy the entire ecosystem. The conclusion of the video’s premise is that the ecosystem needs to be protected. The counter objection based on the conclusion is that even if the dams will cause environmental damage, it more harmful for the people to fight the police and risk their lives. There are more strategic approaches like holding peaceful protests or understanding the benefits of the dams to the environment.

The third argument in the video is that cutting off the trees is causing climate change. A key objection to this argument is that increase in the human population is the direct link to climate change threat. Even if their argument seems plausible, dealing with the real threat of population growth should be their primary concern.

Question 2: American Disenlightenment, or Climate Change Made in the USA

Main Article Premise, Argument and Conclusion

Climate change can be described as a culture and practice of protecting the environment and nature from harmful substances and imbalances caused by human activities. The United States’ long history of industrialization, rapid urbanization, individualization, intensive mining, and usage of hydrocarbon fuel has propelled the country to be the main pollutant and leading cause of climate change. As an industrial nation, the US has been a mass producer of Green House Gases GHG from 1850 to date, giving the nation a 150-year head start regarding of Carbon Dioxide CO2 emissions to the atmosphere. The US is also a leading producer and consumer of hydrocarbon fuel, a major emitter and producer of CO2 gases, further solidifying the US position as a root cause of climate change. The growing number of personal vehicles using hydrocarbon fuel in the US is also very high compared to other developed nations, which further increases CO2 emissions to the atmosphere. This is driven by the culture of individualism and libertarian practices, which opposes any collective thinking and solutions in transport, urban living, and community policies; in favor of personalized solutions that prioritize individual benefits. The US still stands out as the leading GHG emitter and primary cause of climate change by total quantity and per capita GHG emissions; compared to China, which accounts for 20 % of global population, and smaller-sized oil-producing nations like Qatar, Bahrain, UAE, and Kuwait.

Despite China leading in terms of total GHG emissions from 2006, the country which hosts has a fifth of the global population; produces less GHG emissions per capita as compared to the US. The oil-producing nations, on the other hand, rank high in GHG per capita emissions since oil production is a CO2 emission intensive industry, which isolates them from major climate change perpetrators. The 21st century can thus be identified as an American century in terms of the global influence of the US in global politics, economy, and climate policies. The argument that climate change is made in the USA is thus a justified claim since the US has gradually developed a culture that promotes many forms of pollution and CO2 emissions by continuous use and support of hydrocarbon fuels, mass usage of private vehicles, and fuel-guzzling trucks. The political ideology of America is also polarized with Republicans promoting free-market economies and continued denial of climate change while holding funds and any form of support for climate change campaigns. A culture of denying climate change has therefore grown in the US with leaders as well as citizens collectively staying aloof to climate change harm, hence driving the continued GHG and CO2 emissions in the US. The US dis-enlightenment has made the country the leading opponent of Climate Change Campaigns like the Kyoto Protocols and recent Paris Climate Agreements.

Counter Arguments

It is however shortsighted for one to only measure climate change from the single viewpoint of CO2 emissions, GHG and industrialization. Factors such as deforestation, growing population exerting pressure on limited natural resources, and pollution in the lands, seas and water systems also contribute to climate change. Climate change outcomes such as irregular rains, droughts, famines, hot winters and burning summers, heat waves, and typhoons are caused by imbalances in nature caused by human activities. The rapid deforestation, population expansion, and pollution is most rampant in 3rd World and Developing nations, not the USA.

The next fact is climate change is as old as the earth and thus not cultural; since factors such as industrialization, GHG emissions and modern pollution are just a recent occurrence in the history of the earth. The Ice Age which last occurred 12,000 years happened before the earth was populated by humans and modern industries. The Ice Age, was a period of severe climate change where glaciers, which covered most of the earth melted, yet the USA and its climate denial culture did not yet exist.

Counter Objections to II Above

It is a fallacy to argue that industrial GHG emissions do not contribute significantly to the rapid climate changes being recorded in the globe. Major glaciers in the North and South Pole, as well as ancient mountain glaciers in the Equator, have recorded the highest loss of glaciers in the last century, with highest losses in the last 50 years. Global population and deforestation has not grown at such a rapid rate, but GHG emissions from vehicles and industries have grown exponentially in the third world, developing and developed nations.

The argument that climate change is as old as the earth is true since the earth has experienced various climate cycles including desertification of the Sahara, splitting of the English Channel from Europe among other climatic changes. These natural climate changes, however, occurred gradually over many years with the Ice Age starting 2.6 Million years ago, before it ended 12,000 years ago. These natural gradual process of climate change has however been changed, and hurried by human factors and influences, including rapid population growth, CO2 and GHG emissions, and plastic pollution.

Counter-Counter Arguments to III Above

It is wrong for one to argue that Climate Change is made in America while ignoring the other factors contributing to the problem. If CO2 and GHG emissions are stopped in the US and across the globe; while the uncontrolled deforestation of water catchment areas and loss of vegetation protecting river, sea, and ocean beds persists; then the probability of climate change disasters will continue to occur. The second counter-argument is flawed since nature has shown resilience and strength to self-correct and rejuvenate itself from harmful human activities. An example of this flawed argument is the deforestation of hills and riverbeds in developing nations. Nature counters this human interference through increased flooding and mudslides, hence indicating a natural system of ensuring natural balance in the environment whenever man oversteps their boundaries. The belief that climate change is a natural event and not an American culture or made in the USA is thus not disenlightenment, but rather based on facts and geographic history of the Planet Earth.


Eherefield, D. (n.d). Chapter 24 why put a value on biodiversity?

Gardiner, S. (2009). Saved by Disaster? Abrupt climate change, political inertia, and the

possibility of an intergenerational arms race. Journal of Social Philosophy, 40, 140-162.

Polus, C. (2011). Save Turtle Island. [Unpublished Master’s thesis]. Mälardalen University.

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