Thursday, June 16, 2005

Drowning coastal cities

Climate Change:

1. Ideally, people should vote for parties that promise to abolish the military. It is primarily the military that keep the greedy elites in power. It is the Pentagon that decides who rules the USA and many other countries. It is the military in Indonesia that is responsible for much of the illegal logging. It is the military in China that defends the fat cats.

2. Ideally, people should vote for parties that will change transport policies. Journeys by car and plane must be made more expensive; journeys by train, bus and bike must be made easier and cheaper.

3. Ideally, people should vote for parties that will increase taxes on the rich. In Jakarta, at least 100,000 families are five-car families. In the USA, too many overweight people drive around in large vehicles which use petrol that is too cheap. In China, more and more people are buying cars rather than bikes. Governments need to persuade people not to be so greedy. When the 'poor' in the Third World become less poor and become better educated, there is the chance that they will produce fewer children. Income should be distributed in such a way that nobody starves and nobody has so much money that they always decide to travel by car rather than by bike or bus.

4. Ideally people should support political parties and religions and other institutions that promote a simpler and more intelligent way of life. Ideally, people would stop supporting the fundamentalists who (1) oppose birth control (2) oppose moderate life styles.

In the UK, people should not vote for New Labour or for the Conservatives. These parties are the parties of the greedy elite.

In the USA, voters should not vote Republican or Democrat.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/climatechange/story/0,12374,1506672,00.html

The Guardian, 15 June 2005, had an article entitled: 'The boat is sinking'.

The UK's chief government scientist David King has explained:

Since the industrial period carbon dioxide levels have risen from 270 parts per million (classical for all previous warm periods) to 379ppm today, and are rising at 2ppm per year. In 10 years' time they will be at 400ppm.

At 500ppm, Greenland's ice will melt entirely - it's already receding by 10 metres a year - and the sea level will rise, drowning coastal cities and entirely changing the contours of the earth.

Most scientists now agree that unless we stabilise the earth's atmosphere by 2050, there will be no way to halt the disaster.

From the Guardian article:

Lord Oxburgh, Chairman of Shell, advocates that government uses the controls at its disposal: "Regulate biofuels. Or subsidise. Or tax" - any incentive really, but "what we don't want to see is in two years' time the government simply becoming bored with climate change after we've invested a lot of our shareholders' money. Remember, those shareholders are pension funds and other similar organisations." The prospect of big business forcing government to regulate it would be funny, if it weren't so serious.

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