Global Citizens Crave Climate Action, Who Will Lead?

Climate protest bannerA new BBC poll finds 2 out of 3 respondents from 21 countries including big polluters such as the U.S., India and China believe “major steps starting very soon” need to be taken to combat global warming. Further, 8 in 10 accept that “human activity… is a significant cause of climate change.” What is needed is not simply action, but radical action; policy adequate to save the climatic system and heal the biosphere. This will require massive reductions in energy use and emissions, achievable only by shrinking human populations and total consumption (but more equitable); as well as an end to coal burning, primary forest logging and reductions in aviation. The being held in New York is rife with calls for action [news search]; but of the posturing and greenwashing sort. Who will lead, truthfully and wisely?

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5 Responses

  1. John Poxon says:

    Hello Dr Barry,
    I think your question “Who will lead . . .” is essentially rhetorical, because humanity doesn't have anyone capable of rising above the political and economic systems that combined with gross overpopulation are the root cause of the problems you describe.
    I wish it were otherwise, but I believe humanity is doomed to discover the extremes of its capacity to degrade our biosphere. I doubt that it will retain its technological capacity to the end. Humanity faces catastrophe.
    Regards
    John Poxon

  2. james.h says:

    hello. i think gloebal warming is badd

  3. Evidently, concerns like long-term human wellbeing, biodiversity preservation and the integrity of Earth's body are MOMENTARILY at odds with powerful economic and political forces which relentlessly and unrealistically maintain an economic system marked by unrestricted and increasing per capita consumption, unbridled and expanding economic globalization, and continuous and rapid growth of the human population.
    It now appears clear that at the base of certain primary human activities now overspreading Earth is an "economic engine" that drives human action and requires unregulated human consumption, production and propagation for its very existence. Because a colossal pyramid scheme is the structure employed for organizing and governing the global economy

  4. Nigel Miles says:

    Sorry would like to join but it is for the pollution proficient Americans to
    take a bit more responsibility for the atmospheric havoc they are causing
    Yours,
    Dr Nigel Miles
    UK resident and citizen

  5. Loren says:

    Thanks for your thoughtful comments. Just wanted inform you of a recently launched blog which may be of interest to you, End Poverty in South Asia (http://endpovertyinsouthasia.worldbank.org/), which addresses common issues you're discussing and has a recent post on issue of climate change.
    The blog is maintained by Shanta Devarajan, the Chief Economist of the South Asia Region at the World Bank. Its goal is to create conversation around how South Asia can end poverty in a generation. Briefly, part of the post on climate change is below:
    “As world leaders meet this week in New York and Washington to discuss climate change and ways to mitigate its effects, the discussion frequently turns to the large, fast-growing economies such as China and India who are, and are likely to be, among the largest emitters of carbon dioxide (CO2) and other greenhouse gases. But despite being the world's second most populous country and fourth largest economy, India's CO2 emissions is still only one-fifth that of the U.S. or China. Furthermore, India is one of the lowest-intensity producers of CO2 among the large countries. India's per-capita emissions of CO2 is about one metric ton per person, compared with 4 as the world average, 9 for the United Kingdom and 20 for the U.S.. In a group of 70 of the world's largest emitters, India ranks in the bottom 10 (http://go.worldbank.org/0XAV4BYO60). In terms of carbon emissions per unit of GDP (measured at Purchasing Power Parity, or PPP), too, India is virtually the lowest among comparator countries (see chart). Finally, unlike in other countries, India's carbon intensity did not rise as economic growth accelerated in the last decade.”
    See the full post and share your thoughts here: http://endpovertyinsouthasia.worldbank.org/

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