Carpe Diem, Climate Innovation Summit 2018

Delivering sustainable economic growth
Posted Nov 18, 2018 | Seán Cleary, FutureWorld Foundation

Three reports in October make clear the need to act decisively to avert a tragedy of the commons that risks making the earth uninhabitable for our species:


•                     The IPCC’s Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C, which sets a hard target of slashing GHG emissions by 45 percent by 2030, if we are to avert a dangerous disruption of human well-being


•                     The Progress Report of the Our Oceans Conference delivered in Bali on 29 and 30 October, showing little progress in mitigating ocean acidification, securing habitat and species protections, reduce plastic and chemical pollution, and ending illegal fishing and overexplotation; and


•                     The World Wildlife Fund’s Living Planet Report on species extinction, which records a 60 percent decline in wildlife populations in 40 years due chiefly to overexploitation and land conversion.


Read together, these reports make it clear that time is running out. We must address climate, the oceans, our terrestrial system, and the effects of human activity on the earth system, as a whole. Climate, oceans, freshwater aquifers, soils, forests, fields and the biodiversity in each, are all part of one bio-geosphere, on whose health our human species depends for survival. In this speech at the Gala Dinner of the Climate Innovation Summit in Dublin on November 7, 2018, Seán Cleary calls for an urgent whole system response, involving activists, governments, business, and citizens. We now number almost 7.7 billion people – over two and a half times the number on the earth in 1930 – and are pushing dangerously against planetary boundaries. Averting life-threatening disruption demands big changes in our social and economic behaviour.

 

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