Monday, December 10, 2018

Climate Change: Fingers in their ears

Back in October the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change warned that we have to limit global warming to less than 1.5 degrees above pre-industrial temperatures, and that we had only 12 years left to do so. The stark description of the disaster we are heading for has focused minds around the world and created a push for urgent action to avoid it. Unfortunately, the denier states simply don't want to hear it:

The US and Russia have thrown climate talks into disarray by allying with Saudi Arabia and Kuwait to water down approval of a landmark report on the need to keep global warming below 1.5C.

After a heated two-and-a-half-hour debate on Saturday night, the backwards step by the four major oil producers shocked delegates at the UN climate conference in Katowice as ministers flew in for the final week of high-level discussions.

It has also raised fears among scientists that the US president, Donald Trump, is going from passively withdrawing from climate talks to actively undermining them alongside a coalition of climate deniers.


when it was submitted to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change on Saturday, the four oil allies – with Saudi Arabia as the most obdurate – rejected a motion to “welcome” the study. Instead, they said it should merely be “noted”, which would make it much easier for governments to ignore. The motion has not yet been able to pass as a result of the lack of consensus.

The diplomatic language game hides the reality that this is about preventing the conference from using the report as the basis for future action. It is about pretending the problem does not exist, and watering down the response, so these countries can keep on burning and polluting and destroying the world. But given the consequences, the actions of these states are now a threat to global security. And the answer must be a global campaign to boycott and blockade them.