The fact that 200 world leaders agreed at Paris that climate change is a real and pressing problem is by far the most significant outcome of the COP21 summit. Political acceptance may be there but the rest of the document signed by them has no teeth, no enforcement and only voluntary targets. It seems like we are all agreed on the looming presence of Climate Change, yet collectively unable to react to it meaningfully.
It is not about two sides to the debate, it is cognitive disonance, the dualiity is within ourselves; we understand what the science is telling us on one side but don’t like the the reprocussions on the other. Professor Kevin Anderson
There is no doubt we need meaningful action on climate, new long term strategies. We need to see some kind of leadership, a country or union and nations with the will to articulate and implement a powerful response. I see this all of the following as key components of such a vision.
- Rapid decarbonisation of the economy. Best way to achieve this, as suggested by James Hansen and many others is..
- Creation of a carbon tarriff, one that is progressive, revenue neutral and uses the market mechanism to accelerate investment into renewable energy production and energy efficiency.
- This tariff needs to bring an end to fossil fuel use altogether within decades and send a clear market signal.
- Creation of a carbon sequestration sector at the heart of the economy. Beyond energy generation we nned to be creating and using new carbon negative technologies and strategies for building, transportation, food production and more.
- Strategic promotion of farming and land management strategies that sequestrate carbon, eg: permaculture, agroecology, agrofrestry, biochar production
- New economic paradigm. A fundamental shift in thinking away from the GDP growth models, resource driven economies to one that meets the needs of peope and planet. This would be typified by strong local economies, especially around food resource management and social care.
Howcan permaculture design contribute in helping us raise ourselves to meet this challenge?
I will be presenting some of my ideas and perspectives on this at Cardiff University on March 12th.
Booking required but the event is free.