Will Cop21 be a triumph, a disaster, or just a lot of hot air?
Monday was a huge day for news and politics, but a slow start to the actual negotiations here in Paris. It felt like a little bit of a letdown after the weekend of intense marches and protests, including some dramatic tussles with the Police that sadly stole the headlines.
Still, President Obama is here and he’s laid out the stakes pretty clearly when he said
I want our actions to show her that we’re listening. I want our actions to be big enough to draw on the talents of all our people — men and women, rich and poor — I want to show her passionate, idealistic young generation that we care about their future.
For I believe, in the words of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., that there is such a thing as being too late. And when it comes to climate change, that hour is almost upon us. But if we act here, if we act now, if we place our own short-term interests behind the air that our young people will breathe, and the food that they will eat, and the water that they will drink, and the hopes and dreams that sustain their lives, then we won’t be too late for them.
Ecuador’s president Rafael Correa seemed to double down on that idea when he called for the creation of an International Court of Environmental Justice to punish environmental crimes. It’s a bold statement, and not at all out of place at a time when Exxon is under investigation in the U.S. for lying about climate change, and in England Prince Charles (Royalty, no less!) have joined a call sue or prosecute big polluters if they fail to accurately disclose their impact on climate change or reform their ways.
The Paris Climate Talks Will Be a Historic Success. And a Historic Disaster….We won’t win the climate fight; we won’t even come close. But at least we’ll know the score — and we’ll know how much we have to do in the next few crucial years.
Sitting here just outside the ‘blue zone’ where President Obama and other world leaders are meeting to start this process, that feels about right – except that I think the scoreboard shows us tied, thanks to all the last minute actions by people like you.
It’s not too late to get in your shot, either: Click here to sign on to petition calling on President Obama and all World Leaders to commit to keep 80% of fossil fuels in the ground and finance a just transition to 100% renewable energy by 2050.