You’ve no doubt been impressed/terrified by the TV reports of flooding, burning forests, erupting volcanoes and general mayhem being inflicted on us by Mother Nature. That’s because, just as you cannae shove your granny off a bus, so too you can’t assault Mother Nature indefinitely without expecting her to respond. And there’s more kickback from her up ahead.
According to UN Secretary General António Guterres, we are headed for disaster. Even with new and updated plans and pledges from countries for cutting greenhouse gas emissions in the next decade, the world faces global warming of 2.7 degrees by 2100.
You might think that , coming (we hope) out of the pandemic, we would be in a position to implement major changes,go for green, so to say. But it seems that only a fifth of the recovery investment to help reboot economies after the pandemic has gone to supporting green measures.
Most of us know that the climate crisis is a real one – a literally earthshattering one. Yet you see Irish farmers on TV complaining that the government hasn’t shown them a route out of the damage done to the environment by cattle (did you know there are more cattle in Ireland than there are people?).
When things are sufficiently dire, governments act. The pandemic is a classic example: governments round the world have discovered not just one magical money-tree but a forest of them. The alternative would have been social and economic chaos. So they acted, and by and large things have held up. But maybe that’s the problem: we think we’re winning as things get back to ‘normal’. I’m afraid not. If we don’t radically change our way of living – what we consume, our travel, how we try to repair the damage, each of us in our own small way, we’ve had it. Seriously. If you thought Covid was a ghastly global experience, just wit unil your grandchildren try to live in a world where Nature has gone mad.
If Cop26 in Glasgow doesn’t get realistic, the planet is headed for catastrophe. You may not feel the full impact, I certainly won’t. But our grandchildren and great-grandchildren most certainly will. Don’t you think we could leave them a better legacy than that?