If doctors were to treat patients like we treat global warming, the demand for ventilators would sky rocket.
It is one of the most uncoolest of topics to discuss and even write upon. If you search for the words Global Warming one of the first result is Global Warming Essay hinting that this very relevant topic now shares classroom space with terms like Brain Drain and What would I do if I was a millionaire. It is impossible to be unaware of climatic change, the last decade has seen weather events unlike any other.While these may not be assumed to be directly influenced by the melting polar caps, the polar vortex and multiple hurricanes hint at a changing landscape.
It is not very difficult to see why anyone would deny climatic change and especially those in power. The majority of governments in the world today are elected. Their tenures limited and determined roughly by their ability to deliver progress to their citizens. A climatic conscience thus is the last thing a nation hungering for development wants on its already full platter of problems. If one is to look at any of the recent climate control international treaties and policies none mention a definite reduction in emissions. Trade offs, letting lower emitting countries taking the burden of more industrial nations and deferring responsibility is the tune to which each nation is dancing. Whether or not the impact of human activity on this Earth is as pronounced as claimed by scientists, the direction this planet’s surface is taking is easy to agree upon. There are ice sheets loosing as much as 27 feet a year, their areas are the size of large cities. A look at any image from such melting glacial regions reveals not a white reflecting surface but one covered with soot making the ice more receptive to heat absorption.
Why are we not bothered about this? Why is this not part of the ceaseless discourse that the television and media inflict us with? For developing countries like ours it would take a gigantic amount of energy investment to meet basic infrastructural needs, our unrestricted population growth has insured that. In India nearly half of the population has no or extremely inadequate access to electricity. Any form of progress shall demand the correction of this and that must obviously have a carbon cost associated with it which perhaps the World can’t afford. Europe, parts of Asia and the America’s having had their industrial revolutions and carbon binges still continue to fill the atmosphere with the by products of their prosperity. So to nations like ours the need to pollute is seen as the right to develop. India has one of the largest coal reserves and the second largest population, the math is obvious. The world may need to come together sooner or later to address the ballooning problem, shall then we come to a per-capita solution? Shall it take into account the improvement of the life of the impoverished or focus on the sustenance of the life style of the rich? Equality is after all as much a myth as climate change is a reality. This government of ours must address these concerns even if they are not voiced by the electorate. But a yagna is more likely than actionable plans for saving the Earth.