Year 2, Month 8, Day 14: Is Anyone Listening?

The July 27 Manila Bulletin lets Rajendra Pachauri tell it like it is:

MANILA, Philippines — The key facts on global warming are already known and leaders should not wait for the next edition of the UN climate panel’s report to step up action, the body’s top scientist told AFP.

The 4th Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report, released in 2007, “is very clear,” Rajendra Pachauri said Monday in Paris, ahead of a five-day meeting of the body in Brest, France.

The fifth multi-volume assessment, which summarizes peer-reviewed science to help policy makers make decisions, is due out in 2013-2014.

“We have enough evidence, enough scientific findings which should convince people that action has to be taken,” he said after a round-table discussion with France’s environment minister, Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet.

“Based on observation, we know that there will be more floods, more drought, more heat waves and more extreme precipitation events. These things are happening,” Pachauri said.

Sent July 29:

It is beyond foolish to delay action on mitigating the effects of climate change any further. Rajendra Pachauri is entirely correct; the accumulated evidence overwhelmingly supports the idea that global warming is caused by human civilization’s emissions of greenhouse gases. Responsibility for the solution must be borne by all the world’s nations, for building a sustainable future that protects us all against the ravages of a radically transformed climate is a civilizational project. But consider the predicament of an island state facing physical elimination in consequence of rising sea levels triggered by the greenhouse effect. Because large industrialized countries have contributed far more to the problem over the past century, it is economically sensible and morally just that they should contribute proportionally to the solution. If the tables were turned, and a tiny nation’s actions threatened the existence of one of the world’s great powers, could anyone doubt the outcome?

Warren Senders

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