Do our leaders care about the environment?
Rajendra Pachauri, the head of the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is not satisfied by the lack of attention given to environmental and social issues at the current Poznan talks.
I was right in my article on sustainable development, our leaders only think about the economy, the economy and the economy. Climate change is a HUGE threat, it should have their attention.
Governing is all about foreseeing the future problems and acting proactively to avoid them. In this regard, not many of our leaders are doing their job.
Here is what the AFP notes on an interview given by Pachauri:
The head of the world’s top climate scientists says he is stunned at the trillion-dollar cheques that have been signed to ease the banking crisis when funding for poverty and global warming is scrutinised or denied.
In an interview on the sidelines of the UN climate talks here, Rajendra Pachauri, chairman of the Nobel-winning Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), said he was both astonished and dismayed at the imbalance.
“It seems very strange, what has happened in the past two or three months,” he told AFP.
“It defies any kind of logic, if you look at the type of money that the world has spent on these bailouts, 2.7 trillion dollars (2.13 trillion euros) is the estimate, and it’s been done so quickly and without questioning.”
Pachauri recalled that when the Millennium Development Goals for attacking poverty and sickness were being drawn up, a panel chaired by Ernesto Zedillo, the former president of Mexico, suggested “a fairly modest estimate” of 50 billion dollars a year in help for poor countries.
“But everyone scoffed at it. Nobody did a damn thing,” Pachauri said in the interview on Monday.
(…) The December 1-12 talks in Poznan, taking place under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) are intended to serve as a springboard to an ambitious new treaty to slash emissions of greenhouse gases beyond 2012.
The deal is scheduled to be completed in Copenhagen in December 2009.
(…) Only seven years are left, warned Pachauri, for global emissions of greenhouse gases to peak and then start declining, in order to stem warming to around two degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) over pre-industrial levels.
Tackling the problem would cost less than three percent of the world’s gross domestic product (GDP) in 2030, a fleabite when compared to the bill that would come from drought, flood, rising sea levels and storms, he said.
Pachauri added that he was pressing for a meeting with US President-elect Barack Obama to drive home his message. “If I can get 10 minutes with him, that’s all I’ll need,” he said.
The discussions are not exactly going in the right direction. Indeed, the AP notes on another article:
Negotiators from 190 countries agreed a year ago to complete a new global warming treaty by the end of 2009 that would force governments to reduce carbon emissions.
That deadline now appears to be slipping away.
“It was too optimistic to begin with,” said Eileen Claussen, the president of the Pew Center on Global Climate Change, whose organization closely monitors the U.S. Congress on climate issues.
(…) Yvo de Boer, the U.N.’s top climate official, has said it is critical to have a new framework by next year, though he doubted a full text could be reached by then.
In any case, be sure that I will keep you posted on that most important matter. So for this and for much more, stay tuned !