Friday, October 27, 2006

Climate change hot topic at present


Labour are having a workshop on climate chage at their national convention this weekend at which they will be screening al gores an inconvienient truth. Unfortunately no time is being given for discussion or planning and no real steps are expected from the weekend regarding climate change.

Another issue in the news this morning is that a paper detailing the effects of climate change is to be presented to the british government next week. The guardian article (which is well worth reading here ) includes quotes such as that:

"Climate change could tilt the world's economy into the worst global recession
in recent history"

The report goes on to say that climate change could have similar economic effects to the great US depression or the two world wars. Regarding sea level rises the report says that hundreds of millions of people will be displaced.

another quote from the article regarding The IAEA
"The International Energy Agency predicts that $15 trillion (£8 trillion) of
investment in new energy sources will be required over the next 15 years. The massive investment programme that's ahead of us is an opportunity for us to move towards a zero carbon energy system. "


I have no illusions that either the labour party conference or this report will bring about any real action on climate change but I think that it indicates a growing public and government awareness of the issues around climate change. I believethat direct action with a focus on economic damage to those who are the biggest causes of climate chage will have some public and some government sympathy and if the direct action is significant and targeted that concerned members of the public can have a real impact.

The link between climate and food production is particularly worrying with global warming set to cause droughts, storms and disruption to almost all of our current agricultural systems. Im particularly concerned that planning is not being put inplace to create food production systems resilient enough to survive significant climatic disruption. Permaculture and Agroforestry need to be adopted on a widespread nature throughout New Zealand if we are to continue to produce a regular fod supply particularly in drought prone regions like canterbury.

It is positive that the huge economic damage and the hundreds of millions of lives that wll be disrupted or ended is being talked about but the kind of change needed to halt climate change would require an end to our current consumerist lifestyles. Because the changes needed are so great I believe that change must come from the grassroots and it must come from those that will be most effected by rising sea levels and falling economys. It is not just humans that are being affected by climatic disruption and action needs to be taken on behalf of the rest of the members of this planet urgently.

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