It is no surprise that it is young people who are pushing for their elders to take effective action on the climate emergency. Not only will they suffer more from our failure to act, but they accept change as a fact of life! There could be no clearer proof of that than the messages from Greta Thunberg!
Many people, as they age become more conservative and afraid of change, because it unsettles them. By refusing to believe that mankind has been responsible for the accelerated pace of global warming, which is quite separate from the accepted ice age/warm age cycles of past history, they avoid worrying about the disruption to their lives, which would inevitably accompany genuine efforts to slow, stop and reverse the processes we have set in train.
In WWII, governments imposed an incredible range of restrictions on the entire population, which were accepted by all, as we knew we needed to support the common cause of saving this country and its allies from invasion and occupation.
We need similar action now, because we have already wasted the best part of 4 decades since research by the oil barons predicted exactly the situation we are now in!
We need the Climate Council, probably in association with a revitalised CSIRO, to draw up a timetable for the nature and sequence of actions we must take to drastically reduce pollution by fossil fuels and by waste.
The knowledge is undoubtedly there, but the will and the way are still too vague. Any action we recommend for adoption should, I suggest, be notified to the United Nations, because it is certainly true that our efforts alone will be only a drop in the ocean. But it would be logical for the UN to act to coordinate existing and future plans, world-wide.
This is something which will be helped enormously by local efforts to reduce waste and pollution, but in large part it will be dependent on governments to mandate changes to electricity supply, transfer to non-fossil fuels, coordinated action across the country to ensure that the grid can supply an uninterrupted flow of energy 24/7, and across the board changes which encourage a reduction in waste from packaging, travel by all modes, encouraging more work from home and general use of the internet – Oh for a decent NBN!
All this will need to take into account that we will continue for some time to be subject to increasingly severe, adverse and highly destructive weather events, with little time to recover before the next. This is why action is so urgent.
How much will that cost? What price do you put on lives which are lost?
And that is just for starters and needs to be done NOW!
One reason we hoped that more young voters would support the ALP was the need to elect a government which did not deny that action on the climate emergency was essential, as they themselves have been driving the cause. By ‘we’ I mean the growing number of people who accept the scientists’ predictions and are quite certain that we have a real emergency on our hands.
We are not helped by having a Prime Minister who believes in miracles!
However, I believe in a version of a miracle which is available right now without divine intervention!
The parable of the loaves and fishes implies a miraculous delivery of food to feed the multitude.
My interpretation of the parable is that the miracle was that people’s selfishness was overcome!
Among people who had congregated to hear Jesus Christ would have been many who brought food with them. When their children became hungry, parents would have been wary, initially, of bringing out their food publicly, but finally their reluctance was overcome. So more and more offered to share their food with others who were less well prepared, and – lo and behold! – there was enough for all!
Just as an aside – the world produces enough food for the entire population, but poor people go hungry while developed countries throw food away because it is less than perfectly formed!
Too many of us are living in a cocoon, interested only in our own concerns and reluctant to risk future problems which might arise because of acting to help others. This applies to many who claim faith in some supreme being as well as those of us who are agnostic or atheist!
But a climate emergency affects every living animal and plant on this Earth, and therefore failure to act to slow, stop and, hopefully, reverse temperature changes is essential for survival. A massive number of species are already heading for extinction.
If I could perform a sufficiently prominent act to jolt people out of their apathy, I would! But one alone is helpless. United we can prevail!
We need global action to avoid a global catastrophe – and we need it NOW!
If you agree, then please share this message widely and we just might start the vital program of saving our planet before we run out of time!
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