Today is blog action day, a day on which bloggers from all over the world discuss a key issue of global concern on their blogs. This year's topic is climate change. Wikipedia defines climate change as "a change in the statistical distribution of weather over periods of time that range from decades to millions of years."
The phenomenon of climate has engaged the world's attention over the past decade, provoking debates in science, politics, business and technology. Within the scientific community, there is no consensus on the extent of man's involvement in causing climate change, and its overall effect on the sustainability of our planet earth. It is gratifying that many concerned global citizens are taking steps to counter the possible ravaging effects that climate change could have on the world's future. Below is a summary of views on climate change from five global leaders.
Former US Vice-President Al Gore
"Two thousand scientists, in a hundred countries, engaged in the most elaborate, well organized scientific collaboration in the history of humankind, have produced long-since a consensus that we will face a string of terrible catastrophes unless we act to prepare ourselves and deal with the underlying causes of global warming."
Noble Laureate Wangari Maathai
"The world's remaining tropical forests must be protected, because without them not only will the global climate not be stabilized, but the entire world will suffer." "This is particularly true for many in the global south, where protecting forests is not only about conservation but also about economic development. Forests are the source of livelihoods, water and energy, and in most places they host abundant biodiversity that attracts tourism income. Destruction of forests in many places has jeopardized key economic sectors."
US President Barrack Obama
Former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan
"Climate change is the greatest humanitarian challenge facing mankind today. And it is a challenge that has a grave injustice at its heart. It is the major developed economies of the world which contribute the overwhelming majority of global greenhouse emissions. But it is the poorer and least developed nations that are hit hardest by its impact."
Former Cuban President Fidel Castro
"Consumer societies and the squandering of material resources are likewise incompatible with ideas of economic growth and a clean planet. The unlimited waste of non-renewable natural resources, particularly oil and gas, accumulated over hundreds of millions of years and which will be exhausted within barely two centuries at the current rate of consumption, have been the fundamental causes of climate change. Even if contaminating gases are reduced in the industrialized countries, which would be praiseworthy, it is no less certain that 5.200 billion inhabitants of the planet Earth are living in countries still to be developed to a greater or lesser degree, which are going to be demanding a huge consumption of coal, oil, natural gas and other non-renewable resources which, in line with consumer patterns created by the capitalist economy, are incompatible with the objective of saving the human species."
The Debate Continues
What are your views on climate change? Is it for real? Is it a myth? In what ways do you think that the world can use its resources more sustainably? Can developing countries contribute to reversing climate change?
Picture credit: http://www.toothpastefordinner.com/archives/2008/Jan/