The financial crisis shows we don’t care about climate change

Just a quick one…

Yesterday the US government bailed out AIG, a large financial institution, to the tune of more than $85 billion.

Observe. This is how governments act when they think a problem is real, urgent and serious.

Now look at their response to climate change. Spot a difference? Yep, me too.

I’ll feel we’ve got a chance, however slim, of preventing global warming when I see the same sort of urgency on climate change as we’ve seen today.

Right now, however, for most politicians and perhaps most people, the “economy” is still a greater reality than the physical world around us.

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2 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    4fooey said,

    You’re right- the problem of climate change is important and ugent but governments are not acting with anything like the scale measures taken to ‘save’ the economy. Everything I’m reading about the financial crisis points back to a lack of sustainability: the actions of bankers have been too short-term, the regulators have been asleep at the wheel and allowed this all to happen, and the majority of consumers have been in denial about their actions, both in their financial arrangements and their consumerist actions. Now it’s payback time and we are all being dragged down, while the poorest in the world will suffer.

    I’m sure some adjustments will be made but I fear ‘situation normal’ will return after a year or two. It may depend how deep the crisis gets, and how radical the readjustment has to be to fix this. I hope that sustainability can be built-in to the solutions that will need to be sought following this crisis.

  2. 2

    david lewis said,

    I’ve been writing from the same point of view, i.e. look at what the civilization can do when people think something they value is at stake, i.e. their pensions, home values, stock portfolios, and the stability of the economic system itself.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2008/oct/21/economy-green-politics?commentid=07a96d95-52fc-4b56-b850-dfbbccf40ecd

    $2.5 trillion dollars has been thrown in as of week or so ago according to The Economist magazine. The US has expanded its gross debt liabilities by $1 trillion, poof. There is talk that the US may have to throw in another $1 trillion.


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