Monday, February 05, 2007


Following the latest Intergovernmental report on climate change, there's a real sense of impending doom in the British media - property values slowly sinking near the coast, premium being placed on higher ground, mock-up images of the non-existent Arctic ice-cap circa 2040, and discussion of the carbon footprints of the rich and famous (well done Leonardo for that Prius). How ironic that Prince Charlie went to pick up a Green award in New York the week before last, with 15-odd servants in tow (one for the Duchess' hair, the other to clean her teeth etc). Most surprising of all, a piece on Newsnight last week about how veganism can drastically reduce your 'footprint'. Anyone who eats beef or drinks milk is automatically associated with the 500 litres or more of methane that your average cow unleashes into the universe everyday. Meanwhile, although vegans fart more than your average homo sapiens, we only fart up to 1/2 litre per day. So eco-warriors and global warming worriers have no option: veganism is your future!

The question I have for Fred, Kemi and all the other who left comments on my previous eco-posts: do you still think climate change is not caused by humans, in the face of the overwhelming evidence of 2000+ scientists in strict consensus last week?

More seriously: how is the guzzling West going to be able to persuade India and China to seek lower carbon futures, given the history? What with the cow being sacred in India and all, its not looking good.

We have between 20-50 years of the good times left - low cost airlines, planetary travel several times a year, the kind of global trade that gives Tescos consumers access to all-year-round strawberries etc etc. From what I gather from the report, climate change is now locked into an irreversible upward shift, with the feedback loops of a non-existent Arctic ice cap to look forward to. Is there anypoint having children, when Easter Island is the fate of all of us? We've messed it all up.


Fred 11:33 pm  

First, in 50 years, I won't give a shit about the climate. And neither will you. And as I know you will not be having any children, neither will your non-existent children.

Second, there were times in human history, even living memory when (I'll go one 10-factor better) 20000+ "scientists" believed something that was later proven to be absolutely, completely wrong.

Third, even if the earth was warming at the rate at which the Chicken Littles say it is, how do we know that's bad? We simply do not know. To quote George Will: "Over the millenia, the planet has warmed and cooled for reasons that are unclear but clearly were unrelated to SUVs. Was life better when ice a mile thick covered Chicago? Was it worse when Greenland was so warm that Vikings farmed there? Are we sure the climate at this particular moment is exactly right, and that it must be preserved, no matter the cost?"

Fourth, in your magical 20 - 50 years' time, we will very likely not be using fossil fuels any longer anyway. Some genius (perhaps your unborn son or daughter, Jeremy) will have found a way for us to drive and fly around powered by sunshine.

Bitchy 11:50 am  

"Meanwhile, although vegans fart more than your average homo sapiens, we only fart up to 1/2 litre per day."

Brilliant Jeremy! Lol! Climate change is one topic I'm looking to learn a whole lot more about. I'll endeavour to sift through your other posts on the subject.

We're waiting for you on The Afro Beat oh! I thought you'd have been in there stoking some flames by now. Ah ahn... Ki lo de? Is it the cold weather? Are you still in England even?

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