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Window To Prevent Catastrophic Climate Change Closing

October 21, 2007

Report Urges Action

ScienceDaily (Oct. 21, 2007) — Consumption of energy and many other critical resources is consistently breaking records, disrupting the climate and undermining life on the planet, according to the latest Worldwatch Institute report, Vital Signs 2007-2008. According to Erik Assadourian, Vital Signs Project Director.

“The world is running out of time to head off catastrophic climate change, and it is essential that Europe and the rest of the international community bring pressure to bear on U.S. policy makers to address the climate crisis,” said Assadourian, who spoke at the Barcelona launch of Vital Signs. “The United States must be held accountable for its emissions, double the per capita level in Europe, and should follow the EU lead by committing to reducing its total greenhouse gas emissions by 80 percent by 2050.”

While U.S. carbon emissions continue to grow, the fastest growth is occurring in Asia, particularly China and India. But without a U.S. commitment to emissions constraints, persuading China and India to commit to reductions is unlikely. “The only hope for reducing the world’s carbon emissions is for the U.S. to begin reducing its emissions and cooperating with other nations immediately. The EU may be the only entity that can make that happen,” said Assadourian.

“With the U.S. Congress preparing to take up far-ranging climate legislation this fall, and with President Bush planning to hold an international climate change summit in Washington, now is the time to act. If the U.S. and other nations walk away without concrete plans to implement a binding agreement, the EU should not hesitate to use its diplomatic clout to press the issue,” suggested Assadourian.

Already, the window to prevent catastrophic climate change appears to be closing. Some governments are starting to redirect their attention away from climate change mitigation and towards staking their claims in a warming world. “Canada is spending $3 billion to build eight new patrol boats to reinforce its claim over the Arctic waterways. Denmark and Russia are starting to vie for control over the Lomonosov Ridge, where new sources of oil and natural gas could be accessed if the Arctic Circle becomes ice free—fossil fuels that will further exacerbate climate change. These actions assume that a warming world is here,” said Assadourian.

How fast can the world get it’s act together? When will the United States turn it’s attention away from World Military Dominance to World Ecological Responsibility? When does the light turn on that there will be no world to dominate if nothing stops the downward trend of Global Warming? Yes, wars will be fought over food and water, not oil.

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