I stumbled upon a news article today by the environmental editor of The Independent, Michael McCarthy, in the UK which inspired me to write a brief blog post. The title of the article is “UN Climate Conference: The Countdown to Copenhagen” and the opening line reads, “Three hundred and thirty-one days, plus a final frantic fortnight: not very long, really, to put together the most complex and vital agreement the world has ever seen.”
Whew, make that three hundred and twenty-eight days now. And it’s true, the international negotiations dealing with climate change are absurdly complex, both due to the complexity and depth of the climate crisis and also the complexity of the United Nations process created in response.
But at least one fact is both simple and clear — the new treaty to come out of Copenhagen must set us on course to 350 ppm CO2, and right now the majority of the world’s governments have yet to adopt that goal. And so, we — that’s right, you and me — have the next three hundred and twenty-eight days to change that and set 350 as the clear benchmark for a new global treaty.
McCarthy’s article particularly struck me due to his discussion of the historical significance of this Copenhagen conference. He referenced a few other major international treaties and summits — the Congress of Vienna, the Paric peace conference, and more. Each, he remarked, was relatively inconsequential in the face of the subject at hand in Copenhagen: “Copenhagen will be dealing with something fundamental to life on earth: the stability of the biosphere.”
We have a daunting task this year. Yet thanks to all the incredible people I know around the world prepared to do all it takes to make the 350 goal a reality, I couldn’t be more excited for each and every day ahead of us.
Click here to read the full article from The Independent.