• Nigel Hennerley

The Eve of the Climate Election

Tomorrow is December 12th, election day. This is the eve of the #ClimateElection 🌎

Despite the looming and imminent threat of climate and ecological breakdown dangling above our heads like the sword of Damocles, Brexit has still somehow managed to dominate the discourse of this election. And yes, although it threatens some big consequences for the UK, this pales in comparison to the earth-changing events that will be brought on by climate change. With 11 years left to put into place the legislation we need to bring about meaningful change to our Carbon based infrastructure, we need a government now that can deliver said changes. Or we all die.

So no pressure!

Its hard to escape the evidence of climate change related destruction we are already enduring across the planet. The devastating bushfires continue to rage across Australia amidst some of the driest, hottest conditions they have ever endured. Hundreds of thousands of hectares of forest have been lost, 600 homes destroyed, six lives lost, and the beloved koala, the national animal of Australia, has been declared functionally extinct due to loss of habitat. People are literally choking on the air in Sydney upon which a forest fire smoke cloud has descended, leaving the air 11 times the safe limit for Carbon Monoxide, Carbon Dioxide and particulate matter.

And its not just Australia witnessing the apocalyptic-style scenes. Eight cyclones formed in the Indian Ocean so far this year, an unprecedented number. Even on our own doorstep we are experiencing more extreme weather. On November 8th we saw a month’s worth of rain falling in one day in South Yorkshire causing severe flooding, evacuations and loss of homes. And now comes the news from the IPCC that Greenland’s ice sheet is melting even faster than predicted, around seven times faster than 1990.

So much is at stake here, so much damage has already been done. Parts of the earth will go underwater for the last time. Millions of lives will be lost. Even more will be forced to leave their homes when they become uninhabitable. The refugee crisis will become the norm.

We have measures that we can use to prevent this. We need a flurry of legislation to pass through Parliament to stop contributing to this problem which will cause the mass extinction of all life on the planet. We also need adequate adaptation measures set into place before it’s too late. We need to make sure that all members of society are looked after during this radical shift from a carbonised economy to a decarbonised economy – no one left behind. This method needs to be fully costed and implementable in a timely manner. This legislation already exists and is being proposed by the Green Party of England and Wales. It is called the Green New Deal and you can read more about it here.

The power is in the hands of the people. We need to elect politicians with radical ideas changing as fast as the climate. If we stick with the stagnant politics we have then we will never reach our targets, which are at this point, our survival. If there has ever been a more important time to vote Green it is tomorrow.

Or yesterday.


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