Not With A Bang, But A Fever

Samain                                 Moon of the Winter Solstice

Durban.  On the somewhat binding, sort of advanced, might be effective at some point result of this latest climate summit.

On this point a very interesting column by a philosopher wondering how to make his discipline matter.  On climate science he suggested analyzing the thought and logic of so-called climate skeptics.  Given the weight and quantity of high quality data documenting climate change, climate skepticism is not skepticism, rather it’s the height of credulity.  That is, true skeptics, given the science, would doubt the doubters who somehow swallow, accept as credulous, the patent propaganda of those whose self-interest (as they short-sightedly see it) turns them against facts.

“The last-minute successful agreement at Durban puts pressure on what has been the world’s biggest obstacle to a climate agreement – the US Republican party.

For ten years or more, they have walked out of hearings on renewable energy or climate policy with “We won’t act on climate because China won’t!” – a petulant mirror image of the parental favorite: “Would you jump off a bridge, just cause your friend does?””

But now – China will

In terms of sheer global impact, there is nothing else within human control that matters more than reducing carbon emissions.  We insist on running our present in a way that commits our grandchildren to a difficult, if not downright dangerous, world.

Because this is global politics and because the big emitters, China #1 and US #2, have internal political problems on this issue, as does India, and because the world is in the midst of a very unsettled global economic mess, the odds of something substantive happening seems faraway, distant.

It may be that this is the way the world ends, not with a bang, but a fever.  But, maybe not.*

“So does the outcome in Durban truly represent a “remarkable new phase,”  as U.N. Climate Chief Christina Figueres put it? Does the Durban Platform really “set a new course for the global fight against climate change”  (the phrase from an Associated Press wire story that many media outlets have picked up)? Maybe, but it will require a whole lot of work by the likes of the United States and China to keep the world on that course. At the very least, perhaps one could say, in that regard, that in the Durban Platform two of the world’s biggest emitters have agreed to stop squabbling and have shaken hands.”

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