Unpleasant or uninhabitable future?

Lima will be the site for yet another international attempt to frame an agreement to curb greenhouse gas emissions. Today’s semi-optimistic article in the New York Times reports:

“After more than two decades of trying but failing to forge a global pact to halt climate change, United Nations negotiators gathering in South America this week are expressing a new optimism that they may finally achieve the elusive deal.

Even with a deal to stop the current rate of greenhouse gas emissions, scientists warn, the world will become increasingly unpleasant. Without a deal, they say, the world could eventually become uninhabitable for humans.

The aim of negotiators in Lima is, for the first time, to produce an agreement in which every nation commits to a domestic plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, along the model of the November 2014 United States-China agreement. Negotiators expect that by next March, governments will make announcements similar to those made by the United States and China in November

In order to avoid the 3.6 degree increase, global emissions must peak within the next 10 years, going down to half of current levels by midcentury. But the deal being drafted in Lima will not even be enacted until 2020. And the structure of the emerging deal — allowing each country to commit to what it can realistically achieve, given each nation’s domestic politics — means that the initial cuts by countries will not be as stringent as what scientists say is required”.

A powerful documentary film “Disruption” made before the previous Climate Summit held in New York at the UN on 21 September 2014 to mobilise the largest street protest ever seen against the failure to address climate disruption seriously. The film offers a summary of the scientific evidence about human-induced climate disruption, why we are both simultaneously bystanders and perpetrators and how street demonstrations can contribute powerfully to create ‘social tipping points’ that bring about shifts in values and political change.

For a visual account of the biggest climate march ever see this coverage an the Avaaz.org website.

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