As you may know, the climate talks in Paris have reached their halfway point.
To support their efforts, last week there were climate rallies and marches around the world. I attend one in Binghamton NY. We shared our thoughts about climate change and headed outdoors for photos:
A group photo which was sent to 350.org
A close-up with yours truly in the lower left corner
And a link to us learning and singing a climate song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s__Ba9saX7E&feature=youtu.be
The COP21 talks continue to be on my mind. I hope and pray for an accord that will have the world united in rapidly reducing carbon emissions while sharing resources to conserve energy and ramp up renewables and offering assistance to those most affected by climate change, including those living in poverty, those in low-lying areas, and those impacted by drought, severe storms, and other problems brought on by global warming.
I have been following the horrible impacts of typhoon Haiyan on The Philippines. I was moved by Yeb Sano’s speech and action at the UN climate talks in Poland. http://ecowatch.com/2013/11/11/philippines-typhoon-global-warming-warsaw-climate-talks/ When will we wake up to the extreme danger that climate change has on our planet and all its inhabitants and take the swift and strong actions we need to keep the earth (at least mostly) hospitable?
Will Haiyan, in the wake of wildfires, floods, droughts, glacial melt, heat waves, and record storms of all types across the globe finally be the motivator to rapidly transition away from fossil fuels? We have already delayed much longer than the science indicated was wise and we can’t undo the damage we have already inflicted on the atmosphere, but we must stop our dependence on fossil fuels if we are to have any hope of averting runaway greenhouse impacts, with massive melting of permafrost and methane hydrate release from the oceans.
I have been trying to do my part by opposing unconventional fossil fuel extraction, promoting efficiency, and supporting renewable energy technology, but, even with many others following the same path, we have been unable to affect change quickly enough. In the aftermath of Haiyan, I find myself thinking within a Catholic social justice framework: about social sin, about care of creation, about the dignity of human life in community, about the responsibility I – and each of us – have to care for others and the earth.
I haven’t figured out yet how much more I can do. I pray that enough people will come together to finally move public policy in the direction necessary to save the planet before it is too late. While we need to preserve the earth for future generations, it is becoming increasingly apparent that we also need to act for present generations.