Sunshine and warmth this late-afternoon Monday here in California’s Central Valley. Spring has sprung so summer won’t be long in coming — words to weed.
Meanwhile. Ukraine has tragic consequences beyond its borders. Today, UN Secretary General António Guterres, in a video address to a conference on sustainability run by the Economist newspaper in London, painted a grim picture of our world’s near-immediate future due to the panic over Russian oil.
An alarming tweet:
We are sleepwalking to climate catastrophe.
Our planet has already warmed by as much as 1.2 degrees – and we see the devastating consequences everywhere.
We need a 45% reduction in global emissions by 2030 and carbon neutrality by mid-century to keep our climate goals alive.
— António Guterres (@antonioguterres) March 21, 2022
However, all that shit is easy to say, but getting harder-and-harder to actually do — Vlad Putin’s right-now bullshit will eventually kill us all. Even before with Ukraine, the climate emergency appeared running out of steam bogged-down in bullshit — or as Greta Thunberg’s right-on remark about the COP26 summit last October: “blah, blah, blah” — as CO2 emissions from energy last year spiked 6-percent to the highest level in history. Guterres rightly says the horror-war in Ukraine could put the best work done at COP26 (the call to limit global temperatures to 1.5C above pre-industrial levels) in jeopardy as the world reacts to losing Putin’s oil by clamoring for more and more fossil fuels — shit making shit worse.
Guterres’s words use the literary art of foreshadowing: “We are sleepwalking to climate catastrophe … The 1.5 degree goal is on life support. It is in intensive care.”
Further shit like that via the Guardian this afternoon:
“The fallout from Russia’s war in Ukraine risks upending global food and energy markets, with major implications for the global climate agenda. As major economies pursue an ‘all-of-the-above’ strategy to replace Russian fossil fuels, short-term measures might create long-term fossil fuel dependence and close the window to 1.5C.”
“Countries could become so consumed by the immediate fossil fuel supply gap that they neglect or knee-cap policies to cut fossil fuel use … This is madness. Addiction to fossil fuels is mutually assured destruction.”
“As current events make all too clear, our continuing reliance on fossil fuels puts the global economy and energy security at the mercy of geopolitical shocks and crises … Instead of hitting the brakes on the decarbonisation of the global economy, now is the time to put the pedal to the metal towards a renewable energy future.”
“If we continue with more of the same, we can kiss 1.5C goodbye. Even 2C may be out of reach. That would be catastrophe.”
If only we could go back to the future.
Despite the solstice time difference, once again here we are…
(Illustration out front from the UN’s International Children’s Painting Competition, and found here).