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Lack of political commitment to combat climate change

Lack of political commitment to combat climate change


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By Felix Nieto

Climate Change is becoming fashionable, some see it as a great business opportunity, they tell us that renewable energy is the solution and that it will create many jobs, it is true. Others tell us that we as citizens are part of the solution, consuming less energy and talking about it with friends, family and acquaintances, also true.

We have just reached the point of no return, we already know that global warming is a fact, we also know that Climate Change is being accelerated by the combustion of fossil fuels (coal, gas and oil). Scientists tell us that the global temperature cannot rise more than 2º C, and that for this not to happen we must keep the concentration of gases in the atmosphere below 450 parts per million, according to 2005 data we are already at almost 400 ppm. As if that were not enough, we now also know from the Stern report that inaction is going to cost us 20 times more, instead of investing 1% of annual GDP, we will have to invest 20% within a few years.


Climate Change is becoming fashionable, some see it as a great business opportunity, they tell us that renewable energy is the solution and that it will create many jobs, it is true. Others tell us that we as citizens are part of the solution, consuming less energy and talking about it with friends, family and acquaintances, also true.

What they don't tell us is how the hell are we going to avoid exceeding that 2ºC limit, I have the impression that they think that if we change the light bulbs in our houses and take a shower instead of bathing, or maybe they think that technology will advance and it won't It is necessary to take the necessary drastic measures, we cannot waste any more time on this. We need a reduction, in rich countries, of 90% between now and 2030, and I fear that our individual effort, although important, will not achieve the necessary objectives.

What is really needed is that the political parties stop thinking about the next elections and start taking the bull by the horns (without bad intention), instead of throwing the dead at the citizens and suggesting to the energy companies that they put their grain of sand, they must begin to make laws that severely penalize the use of fossil fuels and that bet on sustainable public transport.

But instead of that they do the opposite, an example is the sale of SUVs, increasing year after year, in 2005 more than 100,000 units were sold, this year we are already going for 108,940 at the end of October. In total in Spain more than 1 million cars are sold per year. (1,528,849 in 2005, a record year). one


The Ministry of Development PEIT (The Strategic Plan for Infrastructure and Transport 2005-2020) "foresees an investment of 241,000 million euros, especially in roads and railways, until all capital cities are linked by highways and AVEs." According to the minister, the high-speed train will be the jewel in the crown and will go from the current 1,000 km of track to 10,000 in 2020. 2
I guess you know that a high-speed train uses a lot of energy, almost as much as airplanes.
With regard to the latter, the PEIT intends to "increase the capacity of the airport facilities, doubling the traffic absorption capacity of the airport network (from 165 to 311 million passengers per year)". 3
Only this increase in capacity would cancel the reductions that we could achieve with our energy savings and with the use of solar panels to heat water in all homes.
So we have two options or maybe three.
- Ignore the issue and resign ourselves to our fate.
- Do what we can individually and wait for the miracle, (whoever believes in them).
- Demand the government to take the necessary measures, no matter how unpopular they may be, to try to tackle the problem.

I choose the third, but for it to be effective we must make the fight against climate change the most important political campaign of our time.
It is in our hands nothing less than the future of future generations and the present of thousands of people who are already dying directly or indirectly because of climate change, and everything so that we continue wasting energy and going on vacation to the Caribbean.

So we must ask ourselves if we really want to avoid climate chaos or we just want to feel better about ourselves.


References:

1 http://www.anfac.es/global.htm
2 www.cadenaser.com 12- July 2005 interview with the Minister of Public Works Magdalena Álvarez
3 http://www.fomento.es/MFOM/LANG%5FCASTELLANO

* http://www.felixnieto.com/Globalizate


Video: David Attenborough takes aim at Australia for lack of climate action (July 2022).


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