An inconvenient truth

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Copenhague verité qui derange le climat

Why are we not doing anything, or why are we doing so little ? Scientists are unanimous and the scenarios are bleak – some more than others. Al Gore called his famous film “An inconvenient truth”. Is it so inconvenient that we refuse to see it?

The comparison is striking: we spend billions to prevent a flu pandemic, we plan emergency measures and we form crisis teams. However, we are finding it difficult to act on the climate. Yet, a climate crisis is just as likely to occur as a pandemic. The flu seems closer as it could be here tomorrow but the most serious consequences of global warming will only be felt the day after tomorrow. The flu affects people close to us and global warming affects those further away. We know one simple way of curing the flu, even if this cure is not perfect. It strikes suddenly, not gradually. It is caused by an enemy – the virus – whilst global warming is the work of Man himself…

Despite the efforts of scientists, militants, international organisations and journalists, global warming is not entering consciences as much as it should. It seems that the human mind has difficulty believing what it knows.

This, to such an extent that some environmentalists are relying on what they call “Learning from disasters”. Seveso had to happen for laws against dioxins to be passed, a heat wave had to occur for hospital services to be suitably equipped, 4000 people had to die because of smog in London for the first British law on air to be passed etc. For all these pessimists, even if they must be avoided at all costs, major disasters are the only thing that will trigger the necessary responses from people. They claim that “The very thing that is threatening us could save us”. Let us prove them wrong for once and anticipate the forthcoming crisis.


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