In most civilised countries, it is quite a hard thing to explain to people how bad things are going to get if they don’t start changing their ways. In South Africa, it is even harder, because we’re already largely living a worst-case scenario on a daily basis.
Who needs environmental headaches when you have crime, corruption and Aids?
When I quote Friends of the Earth and say that, at the rate we’re emitting carbon dioxide now, the number of climate refugees will climb from 1 million people in 1990 to 70 million in 2080, you tell me that it’s a subsidiary issue when you consider that the average person that’s alive today in SA will not live much past their 40th birthday, thanks to Aids and Extreme Drug Resistant TB.
You tell me that the climate crisis can kiss it because the biggest cause of death among men aged 30 and younger today is caused by trauma – gun, knife and car accident related – not pathetic little 5% rises in global temperatures every century or so.
Yet influential thinkers and scientists such as Al Gore and his climate change expert panel agree that with global warming comes more floods – and more long-term droughts.
My dad’s problems are bigger than yours
Now when you consider that 70% of all Africans are farmers, and that 40% of their exports are agriculture-related, that leaves but millions of very poor people very vulnerable to climate-related catastrophes.
Add to that the fact that 60 – 80% of African cash is spent on food, and you have a very bleak future risk picture at hand.
To you, it’s just 0.2 to .5% warmer per decade. To the average third world state’s citizen, it is the difference between harvesting crops and reaping the whirlwind.
Now whether you choose to do something about global warming for the sake of the civil-war-crippled poor living in coastal areas of countries like Mozambique, or whether you want to leave your children’s children a planet that can sustain them;
Whether you do it for ethical reasons or simply to feel better about your smoking habit, it is time to start doing something proactive.
For those of you that can recall the World Summit on Sustainable Development (2002), our man Bush gave the entire proceedings the stubby dry finger and kept pumping carbon dioxide like there’s no tomorrow. (Please see below.)
And the way America’s going, that’s fast becoming a possibility.
When will the world stand up and demand the enforcement of the Kyoto Protocol’s stipulations?
When will the very notion of “carbon credits” be abolished?
And before all this happens, will you be protesting in the streets? Will you be teaching your children climate struggle songs and how to burn furniture?
Carbon accountability is as much up to the individual as it is to corporates and ruling parties in developed countries, and voting is powerful. As a medium for civil expression, it has the power to overthrow corrupt regimes.
It has the power to change everything.
Now the question is: If there was a political party that skipped the politicking and ID-style voter base pimping, a party that had the balls to take on industry and challenge government to drive carbon accountability at ALL levels, would they get your vote when next the elections rolled round?
Or would you keep on wasting your vote towards furthering individual politicians’ careers?
Yes, it IS political!
There’s no black and white when it comes to climate change, but it sure as hell is a key politicial issue that will directly affect the poorest of the poor worse than anybody else.
Aids will kill millions in the present, yet planetary failure will wipe out the possibility of a future.
Are you ready to take ownership of global warming as the single most critical challenge facing us as a generation? Or are you going to keep on supporting the Boks and drink SAB?
NOW who’s your daddy?
And now that I’ve totally killed your mojo for the day, you can get it back by sharing this piece of doom and gloom with the guy in your office that drives the biggest urban 4×4 to work on his ace every morning.
Individual accountability, remember? Yes aye!
And remember to CC in the entire holdings company – let’s expose the carbon criminals in our midst!