Sunday, January 1, 2012

Our grandparents fought, died and defeated the greatest threat in their lifetime so that we could have our freedom...we should live a more sustainable life so that our grandchildren can enjoy theirs

We are very passionate about remembering our war dead, our war heroes that fought and died in the name of democracy, and rightly so. They did it because it was the right thing to do, to fight the Nazis and Hitler’s fascist agenda. If they had just sat back and said “Ah, it’ll be ok”, “I can’t be bothered today” etc then we wouldn’t be here today, we’d all be speaking German, and wouldn’t be able to enjoy the many freedoms we have in a liberal democracy. Our ancestors, including my great granddad, William Whitmarsh who fought under Field Marshall Montgomery in North Africa defeated the greatest threat in their lifetime. It would have negatively affected them had they not won and Europe, and probably the world would be a lot darker place than it is today. The Daily Mail claimed the Nazis weren’t a threat and today the same sensationalist tabloid is refusing to admit the truth about the greatest threat we face today.

Today the greatest threat to humanity is climate change, man made climate change. Some people refuse to believe it. To those that deny its existence, you are disagreeing with 97% of climate scientists, with 35,000 of the world’s scientists of the IPCC, and with science. I’m afraid that no matter how hard you argue with science, it will always win because science is based on cold hard evidence. The evidence for man made climate change is overwhelming- (here it is). Each year, human activity causes billions of tonnes of greenhouse gases to be released into the atmosphere. As scientists have known for decades, these gases capture heat that would otherwise escape to space – the equivalent of wrapping the planet in an invisible blanket. This has caused the earth to warm by 1.4 °F in the last 100 years, threatening the habitat of many plants and animals already.

We are running out of oil and global production is likely to peak in about 10 years. Relying on this finite source of energy not only damages the environment but pushes prices up, hitting the economy. Some of the consequences include rising sea levels, an increase in the number of people exposed to devastating droughts and floods, and a potentially massive increase in extinction rates. Not to be alarmist but scientists say that we could see a 70% wipe out of all life on this planet by the end of the century. It will have grave consequences for our grandchildren. I care not because I want to have my name on a plaque but like my great grandfather, I care because it’s the right thing to do.

And yet the only war we need to fight is against the burning of fossil fuels; the only enemy we face is ourselves; our burning ambition to keep on with our addiction to oil; we need to realise that we cannot keep on with an capitalist economic system that relies on infinite growth in a world with finite resources. There is constant opposition to fighting climate change from the right wing tabloids such as the Daily Mail because of the short termism to Tory policies and many people refusing to change their unsustainable lifestyle. BP and other oil companies spend millions on PR and lobbying our government's to reduce environmental regulation.

This is all we need to do- realise the facts, and start thinking about how we can all live a more responsible, sustainable life. We need a change in culture and it won’t come unless we all come together and realise that we just need to make a few sacrifices in our lives.

If you would like any further information on climate change this is an excellent link

This is a good link for how to live a more sustainable life:

There are other things you can do, such as tell Nick Clegg to make himself useful for once!!

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