High School Students Discussed the Ethical Dimension of Geoengineering Solutions in Climate Change

Our high school Philosophy, Environment and History club students from both campuses held an online “Environmental Ethics” workshop on Friday, December 25th.

Firstly, in the context of World Philosophy Day, in 3 separate sessions held between 1 and 11 December, our 10th grade volunteer students conducted the first phase of the workshop at our Levent campus. Our students Ilgar Çapkın (10A), Ecem Doğa Can (10E), Lal Çalıkoğlu (10E), Beril Demirbilek (Science 10), İpek Ünlihan (Science 10) and Ceyda Sürmeli attended a workshop where they examined how dragon metaphors in Western and Eastern mythologies are depicted. After reaching the conclusion that the dragon represents “nature” in both civilizations, they discovered how the West and East constructed their relations with nature. The dragon figure in Western myths states that “the idea that man positions himself as the master of nature and that for civilization to be strong, he must defeat and destroy nature. In the Eastern myths, however, they concluded that “man is seen as a part of nature and is a being that must live in harmony with nature itself”.

They noted that the issues of existence that our planet is experiencing today are not actually caused by “human nature”, but rather by the West’s relationship with nature, dominating the world in the last 200 years, and mankind’s establishment of a life that does not refrain from destroying nature.

In the second stage of the workshop, they examined geoengineering (climate engineering; intervening in the climate and atmosphere with certain engineering methods to save the world from climate disaster) studies and their ethical dimensions, seeing that the view of “being the master of nature” can be encountered even in the search for solutions to our ecological problems in the world where Western myths bring us today. They had a discussion about this matter while reading Naomi Klein’s This Changes Everything.

They turned their discussions and questions into a presentation and got  them ready to be shared with their friends in our other Social Sciences clubs (Environment and History clubs).

In the second hearing of the workshop, 65 students from the History, Environment and Philosophy Clubs from both campuses came together on Friday, December 25 during  club time.

Our student Ecem Doğa Can (10E), who was  the moderator of the discussion noted that the climate crisis will have more devastating and irreversible consequences in this century compared to the Covid-19 crisis that humanity is currently facing. She further explained that the foundations of the climate crisis and the environmental problems we are experiencing hark back to the beginning of human history.