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The Climate Crisis After GlasgowRalph Stone, Salem-News.com Commentary
The largest delegation at the conference was the fossil fuel lobbyists.
(SAN FRANCISCO, CA.) - The August 9, 2021, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) delivered a doom and gloom report on climate change predicting that we can no longer stop global warming from intensifying over the next 30 years and the role of human influence on the climate system is undisputed.
The report is described as a “Code Red for Humanity.”
The best we can do now is slow climate change down and prepare to deal with its effects such as intensified storms, wildfires, droughts, flooding, heat waves, etc. Unfortunately. there has been too much talk about climate change at the national and international level, but not nearly enough action.
In response to the climate crisis, at least 200 countries met at the COP26 U.N. Climate Summit in Glasgow from October 31, 2021 to November 12, 2021. Notably China and Russia were not represented at the summit.
The delegates reached a consensus that all nations must do much more, immediately, to reach decarbonization to limit future global temperature rise to 2°C, but ideally to 1.5°C (2.7°F) above preindustrial levels by 2030. Results from a wide range of climate model simulations suggest our planet’s average temperature could be between 1.1 to 5.4°C (2 and 9.7°F) warmer in 2100 than it is today.
This means a 30% cut is needed to limit warming to 2C. and a 55% cut is needed to limit to 1.5°C. Instead, delegations left Glasgow with the Earth still on track to pass those thresholds, pushing toward a future of escalating weather crises and irreversible damage to the natural world.
The largest delegation at the conference was not from India or the United States; it was the fossil fuel lobbyists who like the world the way it is.
The U.S. can set an example by immediately passing the $1.75 trillion Budget Reconciliation bill, which includes the Build Back Better agenda with all its climate provisions intact. This would be a $555 billion framework to combat the climate crisis.
The lofty rhetoric of world leaders at the summit did not include an agreement on concrete action. Lots of talk, too little concrete action. Or, as environmental activist Greta Thunberg put it, the COP26 climate summit was a failure; it was “blah, blah, blah.”
Is Ms. Thunberg’s harsh judgment of the world’s response to the climate crisis justified? Only time will tell, and time is running out.
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