* First posted 7/12/2018
Right now, we are facing a man-made disaster of global scale. Our greatest threat in thousands of years. Climate change.
If we don't take action, the collapse of our civilisations and the extinction of much of the natural world is on the horizon.
David Attenborough, Katowice Climate Change Conference, December 2018
Climate change. We’ve been hearing about it for many years… but obviously we didn’t want to hear too much as it is one of the unpleasent environmental issues that the more you learn the more you freak out. However in recent years, while the average global temperature keeps rising, the effects of this are becoming more and more obvious and more people, no matter where they live, are starting to feel that something is not quite right with the climate.
The scientists that have been warning us for years, now talk about a climate crisis because of which time already counts down for humanity. Furthermore, they are totally clear that this crisis is directly related to the burning of fossil fuels and that if we want to have a chance for the future the remaining fossil fuels stocks must remain in the ground.
The fact that the burning of fossil fuels would cause the greenhouse effect and the crisis we live today, was very well known by the oil industries for at least half a century. But in order to keep making billion dollar profits, they used part of these to fund think tanks and politicians with a purpose to spread doupt and missinformation – initially for the existense of climate change, later for the extend of the problem and now for its cause.
Until today, that the globe is in this dire situation, their tactics have not changed that much. As we read in Klein’s latest book: “The top 5 petroleum companies have made profits of $ 900 billion during the last decade- just Exxon Mobil can have profits of $ 10 billion in a semester. For years these companies commit to use their profits to invest in a change towards energy from renewable sources (with BP's new brand being the prime example). But according to a study by the Center for American Progress, just 4% of the $ 100 billion in total profits went to . On the contrary, they continue to channel their profits into shareholder pockets, pay exorbitant salaries to executives and adopt new technologies designed to extract even dirtier and more dangerous fossil fuels. A lot of money has also been given to lobbists of pressure groups to reject any climate legislation that seeks to raise its head and to fund the movement against climate change."
So few have won and continue to win a lot. But we will all suffer the consequences. It is probably time to hold those responsible accountable. Instead of subsidizing them as we have done so far, it is time to tax them and demand that part of their huge profits be used to deal with the ecological crisis. It is time to unite our voices and demand climate justice.
Worth watching :
In 1991, Shell produced a public documentary on global warming called Climate of Concern. It warned that trends in global temperatures raised serious risks of famines, floods and climate refugees. But in the quarter century since, Shell has continued to invest heavily in fossil fuels
This is a story about how the world’s most powerful industry used science, communications, and consumer psychology to shape the public debate over climate change. And it begins earlier—decades earlier—than anyone suspected.