AS I write this, the United States is experiencing below freezing temperatures in all 50 states. Some counties were declared in a state of calamity.
The Financial Times reported that Stanford University and the family foundation of John D. Rockefeller had announced plans to cut their hydrocarbon investments. This is no longer a joke as corporations and peoples are doing their own to cut greenhouse gas emissions to abate climate change.
I pray that this historical climate change announcement by the United States and China to lower GHG-Greenhouse gasses by 2030 and 2025, respectively, is more than just words.
The United States said it would reduce by a third GHG by 2025 and China countered that it would cap its GHG by 2030.
The announcement was made during the APEC summit in China at a time when the EBOLA virus is spreading rapidly, with a no cure scenario.
As for China expanding its new silk road to Germany and Portugal, to Africa and India -- this in itself tells a story. While we were in Portugal last September, we were told of the many Chinese nationals caught laundering money and getting special Investors visa as a second home -- just in case the mainland blows.
I don’t know how much action they will put in the battle against climate change.
For one thing, 2025 and 2030 are too far away to even shout victory that we have made it, or that we have reduced GHG emissions.
In this day and age where EBOLA, cancer and many new diseases are sprouting up more than flowers, where poverty is on an upswing, where greed and the lack of empathy are present, where materialism and corruption are prevalent -- we will NOT give up. We will never surrender.
The UNFCCC panel of experts repeatedly said that a 2-degree Centigrade increase in temperature would be bad enough to cause more devastation on climatic calamities.
They have warned that we have already passed the 2-degree Centigrade and are heading upwards. They have warned that a 4-degree Centigrade increase will cause loss of water and biodiversity, will bring unprecedented typhoons, storms, flash floods and the loss of food, shelter and water. Poverty will rise to high levels.
The so-called Millennium Development Goals are useless as we have passed the dates of the goals set forth that the loss of biodiversity will stop. That was yesterdays ago and nothing concrete has happened except the rapid and speedy loss of our forests and marine biodiversity. Over two billion people have no access to water and sanitation and that was 10 years ago. Today, perhaps it could be three billion people.
With the World Parks Congress being held in Sydney this week, we would probably hear all the bad news on our so-called protected areas and NO GO areas marked for protection.
Nothing much has been done since the last two World Parks Congress in Durban in 2003; we were only told of the partnerships with Shell, ICMM-International Chamber of Mining and Minerals and other corporations that disregarded the NO GO protected areas.
Extraction and logging continue at an accelerated pace.
Even the Great Barrier Reef is under attack.
Our oceans which make up more than 75 percent of our planet are under acidification and Marine Protected Areas make up less than 2 percent.
There were plans and promises to increase marine protected areas; sadly, nothing has been done.
What is being done is to find a shorter sea navigational route via the Arctic due to the melting ice and glaciers.
What in heaven’s name are they doing?
The crimes and criminals against nature are getting away with murder.
The Financial Times mentioned that the China- United States announcement lacks details, and for good reason. Governments come and go.
In 2016, elections will be held; the United States Democratic party has lost control of the US Senate to a party that does not believe in Climate Change.
Sometimes, we wonder if both parties lack the political will to pursue the reduction of carbon dioxide emissions.
From what we have seen since the Inconvenient Truth presented by Al Gore and the last 19 Conference of Parties (COP) of the United Nations, nothing has been done. Emissions continue to increase and the ice continues to melt as the temperature continues to rise and get hotter.
Let’s see what happens in Paris next year in COP 20.
How hot do they want, our planet to get? Already, one can cook an egg in the blistering heat, at the same time get blown away by the likes of super typhoon Yolanda.
Many more Yolandas will come. Mark my words. Brace up and plant trees and mangrove forests. Brace up and protect your own communities.
At the home front, the Visayan Daily Star has reported that the North Negros forest reserve -- the last in the island -- will be lost as the Mayors voted not to demolish the many structures that eco-tourist companies have built.
This is so sad and must be opposed and stopped.
We have been fortunate enough to have planted trees and stopped agriculture in our small 41 hectares mountain forest farm.
Its biodiversity is blooming and its natural regeneration continues unabated.
We are happy for we began this over 40 years ago. Today, it has become symbol of a true protected area, a real NO GO zone and we are proud of it.
Let us all unite and win the battle against climate change and show the world what we can do.
Let us walk our talk.
(By: Antonio M. Claparols – President ESP)