- David Collin
- Beaverton, OR
- United States
TED must put much more emphasis on speakers and actions related to climate change because the US government is not going to do anything.
April 6 Jeffrey Sachs, the Dir. of Columbia University's Earth Institute said in a lecture at Harvard: “Stop pretending that government will play a role, because it won’t...We need a massive intellectual effort led by the expert community worldwide.” http://hvrd.me/fXnLbt [...]
Sachs blamed the U.S. refusal to act on the power and influence of the oil and coal industries. Opponents have effectively stalled action by using lobbyists, political contributions, and an effective public relations campaign that questions climate change science. [...]
“No president since George H.W. Bush has honestly taken on this issue — not Clinton, not Bush Junior, not Obama, because they’re scared of the interests...It’s worse than we think,” Sachs said. “Climate change has started. It’s serious. It is impacting the world’s food supply, and it’s going to accelerate.”
To be fair, Sachs said, the problem is an extremely difficult one. Because it deals with the energy supply, remedying it requires painful changes at the heart of the economy of every country. It is also complex, centered on a global climate system not yet fully understood, including multiple interactions with other natural and manmade systems. The problem also requires international cooperation to solve it, something that has never been a strength of humankind. Sachs called for a worldwide effort by scientists, mainly at universities but some from companies as well. Their task, he said, will be to plot a path toward de-carbonizing the global economy, answering questions about climate change science, determining which technologies are viable, and ultimately coming up with a plan that takes the world toward an energy supply much less dependent on fossil fuels within 40 or 50 years.
I think Sachs is spot-on. It's a waste of effort to try for effective government action in the US. It ain't gonna happen.
It's up to the smart minds of people who follow TED to spur action.
What steps can we take?