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Not Saving the World at COP 21


Not Saving the World at COP 21

Alex Scrivener

Over the last few months, attempts have been made to present COP 21, the ‘landmark’ Paris climate summit to be held in December as an opportunity to ‘save the world’. The people behind these appeals appear to believe that if only we had a big enough petition or an impressive enough march, the political elite might be persuaded to use the Paris COP to take serious action on climate change.


"We could do with a lot more of that here, where environmental campaigning is all too often focussed on exhorting individuals to make ethical choices (usually to give stuff up), a message that doesn’t appeal to the poorer sections of society who after years of austerity have had quite enough of doing without things like heating. The narrative needs to be about systemic change and creating a world that is at once more equal, more ecologically sustainable and one in which the majority of people are better off than they are now."

Interesting, isn't it, that when any discussion about implementing those systemic changes shows up, paid posters push the individual use meme... along with plucking violin strings intended to invoke guilt in those who still drive an auto to work (particularly if there is no public transportation) or eat an occasional piece of meat.


Big Brother is the face of the news divas with the dark soul of Rupert Murdoch.


Yes we do need to implement the systemic changes you mentioned but we can't put off addressing climate change while we wait for them to come to fruition. Popular opinion already is that the poor will bear the brunt of climate change so don't expect any great societal changes to be implemented in the west until the tidal wave of catastrophe has already washed over the third world. My guess is that there will be a conscious effort to push the effects and solutions of climate change off on the poor as long as possible.