BREAKING: Tar Sands Pipeline Shut Down


By Afrin Sopariwala, Tim DeChristopher’s Website – 12 October 16

Source: Reader Supported News

This morning, by 7:30 PST, 5 activists have successfully shut down 5 pipelines across the United States deliverying tar sands oil from Alberta, Canada in support of the call for International Days of Prayer and Action for Standing Rock. Activists employed manual safety valves, calling on President Obama to use emergency powers to keep the pipelines closed and mobilize for the extraordinary shift away from fossil fuels now required to avert catastrophe.

192 nations have agreed that average global temperature should not increase 1.5C° above baseline in order to avert climate change cataclysm. This objective cannot be met, and any hope of keeping temperature below even 2.0°C depends on a total ban on new fossil fuel extractions and an immediate end to oil sands and coal use. In the absence of any political leadership or legal mechanisms for accomplishing this, these individuals feel duty bound to halt the extraction and combustion of fossil fuels by personal direct action.

Ken Ward, 59, of Corbette OR said, “There is no plan of action, policy or strategy being advanced now by any political leader or environmental organization playing by the rules that does anything but acquiesce to ruin. Our only hope is to step outside polite conversation and put our bodies in the way. We must shut it down, starting with the most immediate threats — oil sands fuels and coal.”

Emily Johnston, 50, of Seattle WA said, “For years we’ve tried the legal, incremental, reasonable methods, and they haven’t been enough; without a radical shift in our relationship to Earth, all that we love will disappear. My fear of that possibility is far greater than my fear of jail. My love for the beauties of this world is far greater than my love of an easy life.”

Annette Klapstein, 64, of Bainbridge Island, WA said “Like mothers everywhere, I act from a deep love that extends to all children and young people, and all living beings on this planet. I have signed hundreds of petitions, testified at dozens of hearings, met with most of my political representatives at every level, to very little avail. I have come to believe that our current economic and political system is a death sentence to life on earth, and that I must do everything in my power to replace these systems with cooperative, just, equitable and love-centered ways of living together. This is my act of love.”

Michael Foster, 52 of Seattle WA said, “I am here to generate action that wakes people up to the reality of what we are doing to life as we know it. All of our climate victories are meaningless if we don’t stop extracting oil, coal and gas now.”

Leonard Higgins, 64, of Eugene, OR said, “Because of the climate change emergency, because governments and corporations have for decades increased fossil fuel extraction and carbon emissions when instead we must dramatically reduce carbon emissions; I am committed to the moral necessity of participating in nonviolent direct action to protect life.”

WHERE. Enbridge line 4 and 67, Leonard, MN; TransCanada’s Keystone pipeline, Walhalla, ND; Spectra Energy’s Express pipeline, Coal Banks Landing, MT; Kinder-Morgan’s Trans-Mountain pipeline, Anacortes, WA.

WHO. Climate Direct Action is Emily Johnson, 50 and Michael Foster, 52, of Seattle, WA, Annette Klapstein, 64, of Bainbridge Island, WA, Ken Ward, 59, of Corbett, OR, and Leonard Higgins, 64, of Eugene, Oregon, with the support of Climate Disobedience Action Fund.


Climate Movement Across Movements

Climate- Coalition climat
By: Patrick Bond
Published 26 March 2015
Will a “climate movement across the movements” produce Seattle-style shutdowns or a Paris cul de sac?
TUNIS —Looming ahead in eight months’ time is another Conference of Polluters, or COP (technically, the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change). The last twenty did zilch to save us from climate catastrophe. Judging by early rough drafts of the Paris COP21 agreement recently leaked, another UN fiasco is inevitable.The Coalition Climat21 strategy meeting on March 23-24 began in Tunis just before the World Social Forum. I had a momentary sense this could be a breakthrough gathering, if indeed fusions were ripe now, to move local versions of “Blockadia” — i.e. hundreds of courageous physical resistances to CO2 and methane emissions sources — towards a genuine global political project. The diverse climate activists present seemed ready for progressive ideology, analysis, strategy, tactics and alliances. Between 150 and 400 people jammed a university auditorium over the course of the two days, mixing French, English and Arabic.It was far more promising than the last time people gathered for a European COP, in 2009 at Copenhagen, when the “Seal the Deal” narrative served to draw activist lemmings towards — and over — a cliff: first up the hill of raised expectations placed on UN negotiators, before crashing down into a despondency void lasting several years once leaders of the US, Brazil, South Africa, India and China did a backroom deal that sabotaged a binding emissions follow-up to the Kyoto Protocol. In “Hopenhagen,” even phrases like “System change not climate change” were co-opted, as green capital educated by NGO allies agreed that a definition of “system” (e.g. from fossil fuels to nuclear) could be sufficiently malleable to meet their rhetorical needs.

That precedent notwithstanding, the phrase “A climate movement across the movements” used here seemed to justify an urgent unity of diverse climate activists, along with heightened attempts to draw in those who should be using climate in their own specific sectoral work.

Unity – without clarity, responsibility and accountability?

Over the last nine months, since an August gathering in Paris, a great deal of coalition building has occurred in France and indeed across Europe. The proximate goal is to use awareness of the Paris COP21 to generate events around the world in national capitals on both November 28-29th – just before the summit begins – and onDecember 12, as it climaxes. There was consensus that later events should be more robust than the first, and that momentum should carry into 2016. (The December 2016 COP22 will be in Morocco.)

Christophe Aguiton, one of Attac’s founders, opened the event: “In the room are Climate Justice Now! (CJN!), Climate Action Network (CAN), international unions, the faith community, and the newer actors in the global movement, especially and Avaaz. We have had a massive New York City march and some other inspiring recent experiences in the Basque country and with the Belgium Climate Express.”

But, he went on, there are some serious problems ahead that must be soberly faced:

” there is no CJ movement in most countries;
grounded local CJ organisations are lacking;
we need not just resistances but alternatives; and
there are some important ideological divisions.”

Still, he explained, “We won’t talk content because in the same room, there are some who are moderate, some who are radical — so we will stress mobilisation, because we all agree, without mobilisation we won’t save the climate.”

But this unity-seeking-minus-politics was reminiscent of a process four years in South Africa known as “C17,” a collection of 17 civil society organisations that did local preparatory work before the UN’s COP17 Durban climate summit. Actually, fewer than a half-dozen of the 17 representatives really pitched in throughout, and the moderate organisations which had promised to mobilise financial resources, media attention and bodies ultimately did none of these. South Africa’s Big Green groups and trade unions failed to take C17 ownership, to commit resources and to add the institutional muscle needed.

The Durban counter-summit messaging was vapid and virtually no impact was made on the COP or on South Africa’s own reactionary emissions policy. The final rally of 10,000 activists midway through the COP17 unfortunately presented UN elites and local politicians with a legitimating platform. Nor did we use the event to build a South African climate justice movement worthy of the name. So my own assessment of the “state failure, market failure and critic failure” in Durban strongly emphasised the problem of excessiveunity, without ideological clarity, institutional responsibility or political accountability.

At COP21, radicals outside and only moderates left standing inside

Maybe it will be different in France, because their movements are mobilising impressively, with projects like November 27-29 mass actions aimed at municipalities; a Brussels-Paris activist train; a “run for life” with 1000 people running 4km each from northern Sweden to Paris; the “Alternatiba” alternatives project with 200 participating villages from the Basque country to Brussels which will culminate on September 26-27; and getting warmed up, onMay 30-31, an anticipated 1000 local climate initiatives around the country.

Yet the local context sounds as difficult in 2015 as it was in South Africa in 2011. As Malika Peyraut from Friends of the Earth-France pointed out, national climate policy is “inconsistent and unambitious” and the country’s politics are poisoned by the rise of the far right to 25 percent support in municipal elections. French society will be distracted by regional elections from December 6-12 and “there is a high risk of co-optation,” she warned.

Indeed there are no reliable state allies of climate justice at present and there really are no high-profile progressives working within the COPs. It’s a huge problem for UN reformers because it leaves them without a policy jam-maker inside to accompany activist tree-shaking outside. Although once there were heroic delegates badgering the COP process, they are all gone now:

Lumumba Di-Aping led the G77 countries at the Copenhagen COP15 — where in a dramatic accusation aimed at the Global North, he named climate a coming holocaust requiring millions of coffins for Africa — and so was lauded outside and despised inside, but then was redeployed to constructing the new state of South Sudan;

President Mohamed Nasheed from the Maldives — also a high-profile critic at Copenhagen — was outed by WikiLeaks for agreeing to a $50 million deal to get support for the Copenhagen Accord, was couped by rightwingers in 2012 and, earlier this month, was illegitimately jailed for a dozen years;

Bolivia’s UN Ambassador Pablo Solon was booted from his country’s delegation after the 2010 Cancun COP16, where, solo, he had bravely tried to block the awful deal there;

an Amazon jungle road-building controversy divided Evo Morales’ supporters, and in 2013 the COP’s progressive leadership void grew wide after the death of Hugo Chavez and the battle by Rafael Correa against green-indigenous-feminist critics for his decision that year to drill for oil in the Yasuni Amazon (after having once proposed an innovative climate debt downpayment to avoid its extraction); and

Filippino Climate Commissioner Yeb Saño had a dramatic 2013 role in Warsaw condemning COP19 inaction after his hometown was demolished by Super Typhoon Haiyan, but he was evicted by a more conservative environment ministry (apparently under Washington’s thumb) just before the Lima COP in 2014.

If you are serious about climate justice, the message from these COP experiences is unmistakeable: going inside is suicide.

Framing for failure

It is for this reason that the original protest narrative suggestions that CAN’s Mark Raven proposed were generally seen as too reformist. Acknowledging the obvious — “People losing faith in the broken system, corporations sabotaging change” and “We need a just transition” — his network then offered these as favoured headline memes: “Showdown in 2015 leads to a vision of just transition to fossil-free world” and “Paris is where the world decides to end fossil fuel age.”

Yet with no real prospects of reform, the more militant activists were dissatisfied. Nnimmo Bassey from Oilwatch International was adamant, “We need not merely a just transition, but an immediatetransition: keep the oil in the soil, the coal in the hole, the tar sands in the land and the fracking shale gas under the grass.” That, after all, is what grassroots activists are mobilising for.

Added Nicola Bullard: “This narrative is too optimistic especially in terms of what will surely be seen as a failed COP21.” Bullard was a core Focus on the Global South activist in the 2007 Bali COP13 when Climate Justice Now! was formed. The movement’s principles were further fleshed out at the April 2010 World People’s Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth in Bolivia, to include emissions cut targets — 45 percent below 1990 levels in the advanced capitalist economies by 2020 — plus a climate tribunal and the decommissioning of destructive carbon markets which have proven incapable of fair, rational and non-corrupt trading. Dating to well before the CJN! split from CAN in Bali, that latter fantasy — letting bankers determine the fate of the planet by privatising the air — remains one of the main dividing lines between the two ideologies of climate justice and climate action.

The necessity of a radical narrative

Concrete actions against the emitters themselves were suggested, including more projects like the Dutch “Climate Games” which saw a coal line and port supply chain disrupted last year. There are coming protests over coal in Germany’s Rhineland and we will likely see direct actions at Paris events such as Solution 21, a corporate ‘false solutions’ event where geoengineering, Carbon Capture and Storage, and carbon trading will be promoted.

Likewise, ActionAid’s Teresa Anderson reported back from a Narrative Working Group on lessons from Copenhagen: “Don’t tell a lie that Paris will fix the climate. People were arrested in Copenhagen for this lie. No unrealistic expectations — but we need to give people hope that there is a purpose to the mobilisation.”

Most important, she reminded, “There is Global North historical responsibility, and those who are most vulnerable have done the least to cause the problem.” This is vital because in Durban, UN delegates began the process of ending the “common but differentiated responsibility” clause. As a result, finding ways to ensure climate “loss & damage” invoices are both issued and paid is more difficult. The UN’s Green Climate Fund is a decisive write-off in that respect; a different approach to climate debt is needed.

Looking at more optimistic messaging, Anderson concluded the report-back: “Powerful positive actions are in play. We are life — fossil fuels are death. Paris is a moment to build movements, to show we are powerful and will fight into 2016 and beyond to solve the climate crisis. It takes roots to weather the storm ahead.”

Responding, said former Bolivian negotiator Solon (now Bangkok-based director of Focus on the Global South), “I think we need a clearer narrative: let’s stop an agreement that’s going to burn the climate. We are against carbon markets, geoengineering and the weak emissions targets.”

But the clearest message of all came from veteran strategist Pat Mooney of the research network called the etc group, describing to the mass meeting what he wanted to see in Paris: “It should start like New York and end like Seattle. Shut the thing down.”

Back in 2009, just weeks before he died, this was what Dennis Brutus — the mentor of so many South African and international progressives — also advised: “Seattle Copenhagen!” The Paris Conference of Polluters also needs that kind of shock doctrine, so that from an activist cyclone a much clearer path can emerge towards climate justice in the months and years ahead.

Patrick Bond directs the University of KwaZulu-Natal Centre for Civil Society in Durban.

Source: teleSUR

Noam Chomsky: The End of History?

climate-change Dry soil

The short, strange era of human civilization would appear to be drawing to a close.

By Noam Chomsky –  In These Times

It is not pleasant to contemplate the thoughts that must be passing through the mind of the Owl of Minerva as the dusk falls and she undertakes the task of interpreting the era of human civilization, which may now be approaching its inglorious end.

The era opened almost 10,000 years ago in the Fertile Crescent, stretching from the lands of the Tigris and Euphrates, through Phoenicia on the eastern coast of the Mediterranean to the Nile Valley, and from there to Greece and beyond. What is happening in this region provides painful lessons on the depths to which the species can descend.

The land of the Tigris and Euphrates has been the scene of unspeakable horrors in recent years. The George W. Bush-Tony Blair aggression in 2003, which many Iraqis compared to the Mongol invasions of the 13th century, was yet another lethal blow. It destroyed much of what survived the Bill Clinton-driven U.N. sanctions on Iraq, condemned as “genocidal” by the distinguished diplomats Denis Halliday and Hans von Sponeck, who administered them before resigning in protest. Halliday and von Sponeck’s devastating reports received the usual treatment accorded to unwanted facts.

One dreadful consequence of the U.S.-U.K. invasion is depicted in a New York Times “visual guide to the crisis in Iraq and Syria”: the radical change of Baghdad from mixed neighborhoods in 2003 to today’s sectarian enclaves trapped in bitter hatred. The conflicts ignited by the invasion have spread beyond and are now tearing the entire region to shreds.

Much of the Tigris-Euphrates area is in the hands of ISIS and its self-proclaimed Islamic State, a grim caricature of the extremist form of radical Islam that has its home in Saudi Arabia. Patrick Cockburn, a Middle East correspondent for The Independent and one of the best-informed analysts of ISIS, describes it as “a very horrible, in many ways fascist organization, very sectarian, kills anybody who doesn’t believe in their particular rigorous brand of Islam.”

Cockburn also points out the contradiction in the Western reaction to the emergence of ISIS: efforts to stem its advance in Iraq along with others to undermine the group’s major opponent in Syria, the brutal Bashar Assad regime. Meanwhile a major barrier to the spread of the ISIS plague to Lebanon is Hezbollah, a hated enemy of the U.S. and its Israeli ally. And to complicate the situation further, the U.S. and Iran now share a justified concern about the rise of the Islamic State, as do others in this highly conflicted region.

Egypt has plunged into some of its darkest days under a military dictatorship that continues to receive U.S. support. Egypt’s fate was not written in the stars. For centuries, alternative paths have been quite feasible, and not infrequently, a heavy imperial hand has barred the way.

After the renewed horrors of the past few weeks it should be unnecessary to comment on what emanates from Jerusalem, in remote history considered a moral center.

Eighty years ago, Martin Heidegger extolled Nazi Germany as providing the best hope for rescuing the glorious civilization of the Greeks from the barbarians of the East and West. Today, German bankers are crushing Greece under an economic regime designed to maintain their wealth and power.

The likely end of the era of civilization is foreshadowed in a new draft report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the generally conservative monitor of what is happening to the physical world.

The report concludes that increasing greenhouse gas emissions risk “severe, pervasive and irreversible impacts for people and ecosystems” over the coming decades. The world is nearing the temperature when loss of the vast ice sheet over Greenland will be unstoppable. Along with melting Antarctic ice, that could raise sea levels to inundate major cities as well as coastal plains.

The era of civilization coincides closely with the geological epoch of the Holocene, beginning over 11,000 years ago. The previous Pleistocene epoch lasted 2.5 million years. Scientists now suggest that a new epoch began about 250 years ago, the Anthropocene, the period when human activity has had a dramatic impact on the physical world. The rate of change of geological epochs is hard to ignore.

One index of human impact is the extinction of species, now estimated to be at about the same rate as it was 65 million years ago when an asteroid hit the Earth. That is the presumed cause for the ending of the age of the dinosaurs, which opened the way for small mammals to proliferate, and ultimately modern humans. Today, it is humans who are the asteroid, condemning much of life to extinction.

The IPCC report reaffirms that the “vast majority” of known fuel reserves must be left in the ground to avert intolerable risks to future generations. Meanwhile the major energy corporations make no secret of their goal of exploiting these reserves and discovering new ones.

A day before its summary of the IPCC conclusions, The New York Times reported that huge Midwestern grain stocks are rotting so that the products of the North Dakota oil boom can be shipped by rail to Asia and Europe.

One of the most feared consequences of anthropogenic global warming is the thawing of permafrost regions. A study in Science magazine warns that “even slightly warmer temperatures [less than anticipated in coming years] could start melting permafrost, which in turn threatens to trigger the release of huge amounts of greenhouse gases trapped in ice,” with possible “fatal consequences” for the global climate.

Arundhati Roy suggests that the “most appropriate metaphor for the insanity of our times” is the Siachen Glacier, where Indian and Pakistani soldiers have killed each other on the highest battlefield in the world. The glacier is now melting and revealing “thousands of empty artillery shells, empty fuel drums, ice axes, old boots, tents and every other kind of waste that thousands of warring human beings generate” in meaningless conflict. And as the glaciers melt, India and Pakistan face indescribable disaster.

Sad species. Poor Owl.




EU Gets Ready to Open Canadian Tar Sands Floodgate


By Sarah Lazare, Common Dreams

Despite protest, lawmakers poised to give legislative handout to industry that peddles one of world’s dirtiest fossil fuels


After years of lobbying to break into European markets, Canada’s tar sands oil industry is poised to score a victory from EU lawmakers who have signaled willingness to drop a requirement that labels tar sands oil as dirtier than other fossil fuels.

The EU agreed five years ago to a piece of climate legislation called the ‘Fuel Quality Directive,’ which was to go into effect in 2010 with the aim of cutting transport fuel emissions by 6 percent by 2020. Yet thanks to heavy industry lobbying and government stalling, the plan still has not gone into effect years later.

Both the Financial Times and Reuters reported Thursday that the EU is likely to weaken the language of the not-yet-implemented plan by scrapping a requirement that bitumen—oil extracted from tar sands—be labeled as high-emissions diesel. The higher rating would have discouraged, but not prevented, imports.

A draft document drawn up by the European Commission will, if implemented, allow companies to sidestep penalties on tar sands imports. “Under the new methodology, companies would only have to make their emission cuts based on EU averages for the ‘output’ fuels – the petrol or diesel – regardless of whether it was originally made from heavy crude or not,” the Financial Times explains.

One of the world’s dirtiest fossil fuels, bitumen produces up to five times more carbon than conventional crude oil. The extraction process is extremely energy-intensive, destructive to ecosystems, and creates large reservoirs of toxic waste. Environmental groups have argued that proposed regulations in previous drafts of the Fuel Quality Directive were already too lax, and that tar sands should simply stay in the ground.

The government of Canada and the oil industry have aggressively opposed potential EU penalties on bitumen imports, and Canada’s Natural Resources Minister Greg Rickford pressed the issue in sideline conversations at the G7 meetings in Rome last month.

Meanwhile, environmental protesters rallied this week against what is believed to be the first large shipment of bitumen to Europe, which arrived in Spain from Canada.

“Tar sands are deadly for our climate and must be kept in the ground and out of Europe,” said Colin Roche of Friends of the Earth in a statement about the delivery. “To give a lifeline to this dangerous industry is to set us up for climate disaster.”

Source: RSN

Η αντιμετώπιση της Κλιματικής Αλλαγής ωφελεί τις επιχειρήσεις – Μπαν Κι-μουν Γ.Γ. ΟΗΕ

21 Οκτωβρίου 2013

Δουλειά μου, ως Γενικού Γραματέα του ΟΗΕ, είναι να αγωνίζομαι για έναν ασφαλή και ειρηνικό κόσμο. Αυτό σημαίνει την αντιμετώπιση απειλών, όχι μόνο για όσους κατοικούμε τον πλανήτη σήμερα αλλά και για τις μελλοντικές γενιές.

Ίσως να μην υπάρχει μεγαλύτερη απειλή για την παγκόσμια κοινότητα από αυτήν της κλιματικής αλλαγής. Αντιπροσωπεύει έναν σαφή κίνδυνο για όλους εμάς εδώ και τώρα αλλά και στα επόμενα χρόνια.

Η κλιματική αλλαγή είναι η μεγαλύτερη απειλή για την ανάπτυξη και μπορεί να υπονομεύσει την πρόοδο που έχουμε επιτύχει στην μείωση της φτώχειας. Αποτελεί κίνδυνο για τις οικονομίες, μεγάλες και μικρές και για την σταθερότητα του παγκόσμιου οικονομικού συστήματος. Αυξάνει τους κινδύνους για μειωμένες διατροφικές προμήθειες στο μεγαλύτερο μέρος του κόσμου και μπορεί να απειλήσει την ειρήνη.

Επισκεπτόμενοι την Ανταρκτική με την σύζυγό μου, Yoo Soon-taek, είδαμε από πρώτο χέρι τις συνέπειες της κλιματικής αλλαγής για το λιώσιμο των παγετώνων.
Visiting Antarctica with my wife, Yoo Soon-taek, we saw first-hand the effects of climate change on melting glaciers.

Χωρίς την λήψη επειγόντων μέτρων, ο κόσμος βρίσκεται σε τροχιά υπερθέρμανσης περισσότερων από 2 βαθμούς κελσίου πάνω από τις θερμοκρασίες της προ-βιομηχανικής εποχής μέχρι το τέλος αυτού του αιώνα -το σημείο όπου οι πλέον επικίνδυνες επιπτώσεις της κλιματικής αλλαγής, αναμένονται να πραγματοποιηθούν.

Το περασμένο μήνα, η Διακυβερνητική Επιτροπή για την Κλιματική Αλλαγή (IPCC) στην έκθεσή της ανέφερε οτι η κλιματική αλλαγή επηρεάζει τον παγκόσμιο κύκλο των υδάτων, γεγονός που οδηγεί σε μη-κανονικές βροχοπτώσεις, περισσότερες πλημμύρες και περισσότερες ξηρασίες. Η έκθεση σαφώς κατέδειξε οτι η ανθρώπινη επίδραση στο κλιματικό σύστημα είναι πλέον εμφανής στις περισσότερες περιοχές του πλανήτη. Είναι εξαιρετικά πιθανό η ανθρώπινη επίδραση να υπήρξε η κυρίαρχη αιτία της παρατηρούμενης υπερθέρμανσης από τα μέσα του 20ου αιώνα.

Αυτό είναι βαθιά ανησυχητικό. Ωστόσο πολύ συχνά ένα σημαντικό γεγονός χάνεται μέσα στον φόβο• η αντιμετώπιση της κλιματικής αλλαγής είναι επίσης μία από τις μεγαλύτερες ευκαιρίες μας.

Μπορούμε να δημιουργήσουμε αξιοπρεπείς εργασίες, να βελτιώσουμε την δημόσια υγεία, να ενισχύσουμε τις γυναίκες και να προστατεύσουμε το περιβάλλον με φωτισμένη δράση για την κλιματική αλλαγή. Δεν χρειάζεται να περιμένουμε τα επιτεύγματα του αύριο. Οι τεχνολογίες, οι πολιτικές και οι πρακτικές που έχουμε τώρα στα χέρια μας μπορούν να βοηθήσουν στην επιτάχυνση και στην κλιμάκωση του κλιματικού μετριασμού και προσαρμογής, σήμερα.

Ο ιδιωτικός τομέας μπορεί να παίξει ζωτικό ρόλο. Οι επιχειρήσεις μπορούν να πρωτοπορήσουν με το παράδειγμά τους στους τομείς της βιομηχανίας και των δικτύων. Οι βιομηχανικοί ηγέτες μπορούν να ευθυγραμμίσουν τις επιχειρηματικές ανάγκες τους, ενώ θα δημιουργήσουν ένα βιώσιμο μέλλον.

Η αντιμετώπιση της κλιματικής αλλαγής είναι η σωστή πράξη που πρέπει να κάνουμε και πιστεύω ακράδαντα οτι τα αποτελέσματα στο τέλος θα είναι εμφανή. Οι επιχειρήσεις μπορούν να ωφεληθούν από την μείωση των εκπομπών αερίων θερμοκηπίου και από την χρήση καθαρής και αποτελεσματικής ενέργειας. Η δημιουργία ανθεκτικών υποδομών και η παροχή έξυπνων υπηρεσιών για το κλίμα, είναι προνοητική επιχειρηματικότητα.

Η ενέργεια είναι χαρακτηριστικό παράδειγμα. Σε όλον τον κόσμο, σχέδον ένα στα πέντε άτομα δεν έχει ακόμα πρόσβαση στον ηλεκτρισμό. Περισσότερο από το διπλάσιο αυτού του μεγέθους -2,8 δισεκατομμύρια ή 40% του πληθυσμού της γης- βασίζονται στο ξύλο, στο κάρβουνο, στα ζωικά και φυτικά απόβλητα ή σε άλλα στερεά καύσιμα για το μαγείρεμα και την θέρμανση.
Η αρνητική επίπτωση στο περιβάλλον είναι τεράστια, τόσο όσο και στην υγεία και στον χρόνο των ανθρώπων.

Όσοι από μας δεν έχουν πρόσβαση στην σύγχρονη ενέργεια, συχνά την σπαταλούν -εν γνώσει ή εν αγνοία τους. Πρέπει να χρησιμοποιούμε την ενέργεια πιο αποτελεσματικά και να επικεντωθούμε σε καθαρότερες, χαμηλού άνθρακα λύσεις και να εξοικονομήσουμε πόρους και χρήματα στην πορεία.

Κατά την πτήση πάνω από την Λίμνη Μαρόβο, Νησιά Σολομώντος το 2011, είδα τις επιπτώσεις της αποψίλωσης των δασών, της κλιματικής αλλαγής και των φυσικών καταστροφών στην περιοχή.
Flying over the Marovo Lagoοn, Solomon Islands, in 2011, I saw the effects of deforestation, climate change and natural disasters on the area.

Διαπιστώνουμε πρόοδο. Η επένδυση στην καθαρή ενέργεια έχει τετραπλασιαστεί στην διάρκεια της τελευταίας δεκαετίας και τον περασμένο χρόνο είδαμε δραματική μετατόπιση στην ισορροπία των επενδύσεων ανανεώσιμης ενέργειας.

Η ανάπτυξη των αγορών ανανεώσιμης ενέργειας την περασμένη δεκαετία έφερε επίσης τεχνολογικές βελτιώσεις και μειώσεις του κόστους, τα οποία σημαίνουν οτι τα έργα μπορούν να παράγουν ελκυστικές αποδόσεις. Οι επενδυτές ανοίγουν νέες αγορές, διευκολύνοντας νέα επιχειρηματικά μοντέλα και υποστηρίζοντας επιχειρηματίες στον αναπτυσσόμενο κόσμο όπου η ζήτηση για ανανεώσιμη ενέργεια για όλους είναι μεγαλύτερη.

Οι ευκαιρίες αφθονούν. Για να τις εκμεταλλευτούμε, πρέπει να κλιμακώσουμε τις προσπάθειές μας. Όσο περισσότερο καθυστερούμε, τόσο μεγαλύτερο το κόστος -για τις κοινότητες, τις επιχειρήσεις, τις οικονομίες και τον πλανήτη. Όσο συντομότερα δράσουμε, τόσο περισσότερο θα επωφεληθούμε.

Για να προσθέσω δυναμική, έχω προσκαλέσει ηγέτες του κόσμου και ηγέτες των επιχειρήσεων και των κοινωνιών πολιτών, σε Διάσκεψη Κορυφής για το Κλίμα τον επόμενο Σεπτέμβριο, προκειμένου να ενεργοποιήσουμε την θέληση για νομικά δεσμευτική συμφωνία σχετικά με την κλιματική αλλαγή μέσα στο 2015, να διατυπώσουμε συγκεκριμένες δεσμεύσεις και να πυροδοτήσουμε έναν αγώνα προς την κορυφή στην κλιματική δράση.

Απευθύνω έκκληση προς όλους να ηγηθούν στην κλιματική αλλαγή. Δράστε αποφασιστικά όσο ακόμα μπορούμε. Πρόκειται για το καλό του πλανήτη και το καλό των επιχειρήσεων.

Περισσότερα στο UN’s work on climate change.

ΠΗΓΗ: Ban Ki-moon Secretary-General of the United Nations at United Nations (LinkedIn)