severity of crisis

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severity of crisis

Post  nittinchabbra on Sat May 01, 2010 11:03 am

The obvious questions provoke the obvious answers. From my reading of the literature over the last month, and from everything I have learned at Copenhagen, there can be no doubt that the scientific consensus on climate change is consistent and overwhelming. So it leaves us with a quandary. All of these researchers, across a half dozen academic disciplines, are either right or they are terribly wrong. If wrong it calls into question our entire cult of modernity which in good measure is based on our faith and confidence in the scientific method and the brilliance of the technologies it has spawned. If however the scientists are right, as I believe them to be, then it begs an obvious question. If, as they suggest, the entire fate of the world hangs in the balance, if a rise in sea levels promises to inundate much of the Nile Delta, if by 2030 nearly half of the world’s population will live without certain access to water, if the glaciers of the Andes and the Tibetan plateau, source of life for much of Asia, will be largely be gone, then why has not our response been in any way commensurate with the severity of the crisis? Why have we not responded with even a modicum of the intensity of devotion and sacrifice that we have brought to other moments of national and international crisis? Why have we not fully mobilized, declared the equivalent of war, with the potential consequences of global warming fully in mind? According to the Chair of the IPCC, Rajendra Pachauri, who spoke last evening at the conference and dinner I attended at Kornborg Castle, the climate crisis could be fully mitigated and the world’s economy transformed with an investment equivalent to some 3% of global GNP. During World War 2, the United States devoted 38% GDP to military victory. Nobody complained. I don’t understand this disconnect and over the next couple of days I hope to find some answers.
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