The international climate negotiations in Durban, South Africa, succeeded two weeks back. Succeeded, that is, in putting Africa, Australia, the world’s small island states, and much of Asia on the deathlist.
“Saving tomorrow Today” runs the slogan of the 17th Conference of the Parties. What came of the 16-day sweat- and anxiety-laden event? (An event that the Obama Administration consistently sabotaged.) This: a pledge by all countries to accept binding emission cuts by 2020. Twenty-twenty? As Australia and Russia burn, killing tens of thousands? As Pakistan submerges? And as CO2 emissions surpass scientists’ worst-case predictions? As the United States faces record-breaking extreme weather events?
The political and economic elite, manic at the helm of their decades-antiquated model of “development,” industrial capitalism, have logjammed once again humanity’s only chance at reconciliation with the planet and our own psychosis.
International Director of Greenpeace Nami Kaidoo remarked: “The chance of averting catastrophic climate change is slipping through our hands with every passing year that nations fail to agree on a rescue plan for the planet.”
More from Common Dreams:
Nnimmo Bassey, chair of Friends of the Earth International, said: “Delaying real action till 2020 is a crime of global proportions.
“This means the world is on track to a 4C temperature rise, a death sentence for Africa, small island states and the poor and vulnerable worldwide. The richest 1% of the world have decided that it is acceptable to sacrifice the 99%.”
I pray that by now you don’t read this post’s title with skepticism that it’s “alarmist.” No, quite literally, it’s an accurate statement of fact and a useful metaphor for the state of us.