Pretty much everyone agreed that the Climate Talks at Copenhagen failed. Although it was brilliant to have all the world's leaders agree, in one room, the scientific imperative of keeping our global temperature under 2 degrees, they failed to make an agreement that would make it happen.
The commonly agreed target for safe levels of CO2 in the atmosphere is 350 parts per million (ppm). We've already overshot that: there is currently around 388 ppm in the atmosphere, with a need to reduce emissions as soon as possible to safe levels. According to my daughter Sophia, a calculation of emissions agreed in Copenhagen would lead to a very unsafe level of CO2 of over 700ppm by the end of the century and we'd have reached the point of no return long before that.
Two commentators have this to say today in the aftermath of Copenhagen.
In Requiem for a Crowded Planet, the Guardian's George Monbiot gives us some bitter medicine
Johann Hari wrote in the Independent that we're finally realising that Daddy is not going to look after us and only grassroots practical and even protest action will get us the changes needed.
I've been struggling with despair for the planet for again lately, which is not good for my new-refound physical health nor my mental health. I don't know where to put this information, and I wonder if anyone does. My belief in God has transformed into worship and gratitude more akin to that of indigenous people so that's no help. Perhpas, as Philip Carr-Gomm said on the solstice on the tump yesterday, when it's dark, just wait. The light will come.
I will have 10 days off with my family and friends over Christmas. I'll eat and laugh and sit by the fire and walk in the cold. I'll love my wonderful life. And then, come the new year, I'll start again to do whatever I can, anything in my power, to Be the Change I want to see. I've seen this coming and, alongside many others, I'll see it through.