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In the following sentence:

我们每个人都是世界公民,千万不应该有低碳生活与己无关的想法,即别人都过“低碳生活”,我自己过“高碳生活”也无妨

无妨 means "might as well", "there is no harm", or "no matter".

However, it then makes no sense, since the meaning would become something like the following:

Every person is the world citizen, so should never have the idea that low-carbon life is irrelevant with yourself. That is, others make a low-carbon life while I make a high-carbon life is also no harm (无妨).

This does not make sense, as 无妨 seems to be positive connotation for the sentence 我自己过“高碳生活”, which is incompatible with the author's point of view, which proposes the low-carbon life.

So what is the meaning of 无妨 here? Is my understanding here correct in the first place?

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What you post under Philipp's answer is correct, which I have upvoted it.

即 here indeed means 'that is'.

So 低碳生活与己无关的 想法: the notion of excluding ourselves from the concept "low-carbon life";

即: that is (the notion[想法] is);

别人都过“低碳生活”,我自己过“高碳生活”也无妨。: Since other people live a low-carbon life (already), it's ok/not a big deal for me to live a high-carbon life. (apparently this is a selfish notion, which the author is trying to persuade people not to have.)

无妨 means there is no harm. I interpret 无妨 here as ok/not a big deal according to the context.

1

我们每个人都是世界公民,千万不应该有低碳生活与己无关的想法,既别人都过“低碳生活”,我自己过“高碳生活”也无妨。

We are all living on this planet, and we definitely shouldn’t think that a low-carbon lifestyle doesn’t have anything to do with us personally.
And neither should we think that, since there are so many other people already following this low-carbon lifestyle, it wouldn’t matter if we personally had a very high carbon footprint.

The meaning of this is that

  • A low-carbon lifestyle is important for the world, and we should know this.
  • Many have realized this and follow a low-carbon lifestyle.
  • But the fact that many people are producing very little carbon is not a reason for you personally to think that there is no harm if you produce more than others. (Because if everybody thinks that way, then everybody will be living a high-carbon lifestyle again.)
  • 既 here is a typo. It should be 即ԅ(¯ㅂ¯ԅ) – Toosky Hierot Jun 29 '18 at 7:58
  • @TooskyHierot It’s not a typo. 即 would suggest “even though”: “Even though (即) other people are following a low-carbon lifestyle, there would be no harm in me producing a lot of carbon.” That doesn’t make sense. 既 (the original character) suggests “since (=because)”: [It’s wrong to think (from the first part of the sentence)] that because (既) other people are behaving correctly, I can do whatever I want!” (paraphrased). The 既 is correct. – Philipp Jun 29 '18 at 8:20
  • Yeah, the 既 is not a typo, it looks like a formal contraction of 既然 to me. Which means "since/seeing that". – user2137196 Jun 29 '18 at 8:22
  • 即 here is equivalent to "that" In English, leading an appositive clause to explain 想法 in detail... – Toosky Hierot Jun 29 '18 at 8:34
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    Sorry it is a typo, 即 is correct. Just fixed. I thought 即 here means “that is”, not “even though”. – Blaszard Jun 29 '18 at 9:21
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I bet you will have no issue understanding this if I rearrange it a little:

我们每个人都是世界公民,千万不应该有 “低碳生活与己无关,既别人都过“低碳生活”,我自己过“高碳生活”也无妨” 的想法。

The original sentence has a slightly odd structure in my opinion. The way I have arranged it here is better and is how you should write yourself.

  • Sorry but in my opinion it doesn't sound to USE 既 here In such way and now that you have rearranged the text, it's more natural to delete (not omit) 既 as well as 即 here. If you insist I recommend 既然 and to insert “了” between 无妨 and 的想法. – Toosky Hierot Jun 29 '18 at 9:15
  • @user2137196 has a typo on "既", it should be "即". His main idea is OK, but I would like to change it a little bit as this: 我们每个人都是世界公民,千万不应该有低碳生活与己无关的想法,即(别人都过“低碳生活”,我自己过“高碳生活”也无妨” 的想法)。 – Bruce Huang Jun 29 '18 at 12:31
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This is not a direct answer but a proposal of corrections that more or less preserve the core meaning of the given sentence.

  • 我们每个人都是世界公民,千万不应该有低碳生活与己无关的想法——既然别人都过“低碳生活”,我自己过“高碳生活”也无妨。

  • 我们每个人都是世界公民,千万不应该有“低碳生活与己无关”的想法,即“别人都过‘低碳生活’,我自己过‘高碳生活’也无妨”的想法。

0

我们每个人都是世界公民,
We are all citizens of this (one) world,
千万不应该有低碳生活与己无关的想法,
we absolutely should not think, "low carbon lifestyle has nothing to do with me,"
即别人都过“低碳生活”,
namely, (we should not think) "if other people live 'low carbon lives,'
我自己过“高碳生活”也无妨。
(then) there is no harm in my living a 'high carbon life.' "

  • namely is an adverb. Can it be used as a conjunction to connect clauses in this context? – dan Jun 29 '18 at 23:13
  • namely: "used for introducing more detailed information about a subject that you are discussing" That is what namely does here, it tells us more about what we should not think. – Pedroski Jun 30 '18 at 0:50

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