Have We Lost the Plot?

earthquaker Issue 92

We all use two words that in the 21st century have had their meaning distorted. Every politician, and just about every media outlet talks about the “economy” when they really mean the manipulation of market forces to distort peoples' wealth.

The word economy comes from the Greek – ecos meaning the home, and nomia meaning to manage. In Middle Ages the word “economy” was simply a word for household management. We have succeeded in distorting it to mean, purely, management of finance at state or world level.

From exactly the same root as “economy” we have “ecology” - ecos = home, logia = study.

Therefore, ecology and economy are closely connected – connected to the home and the home environment – never intended to be corrupted into a global context, losing sight of the original meaning.

And so, with this in mind, we look at the world climate change talks currently taking place in Marakesh, Morocco – COP22 - - the 22nd discussion by the representatives of 195 countries belonging to the Conference Of the Parties (world leaders) to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). If number 21 last in Paris is anything to go by one has to question what they achieve. Yes it is good they are talking, but are they talking about the right things or are they letting their idea of “the economy” get in the way?

The report from number 21 ran to several pages of what was basically basically gobbledegook. Nowhere did it mention any idea of limiting carbon emissions; no mention of the damage caused by fossil fuel burning; no mention of curbing the excessive promotion of the internal combustion engine and the encouragment of personal transport world-wide. Reading into what wasn't there, it was a charter to carry on as normal. Even the Secretary of United Nations admitted that it stood no more than a 50:50 chance of bringing about any reduction in climate change.

And this in a year that has seen the highest global temperatures ever recorded. In a year when all the leading climate scientists have been totally emphatic that if we are to stand any chance of limiting climate change to an absolute maximum of 2 degrees C the we MUST leave all fossil fuels in the ground and accelerate the process to use alternatives – most of which already exist, but do not generate the massive profits that multi-nationals want to see. And under the present “economic” system unless something attracts the multi-national companies it never becomes mainstream.

Let us hope and pray that those basking in the sweltering heat of Marrakech will at last come to their senses and produce some meaningful agreement.