International talks due to take place in Paris in 2015 have sparked debate over how we can save the earth from irreparable damage. The goal of the talks is to limit global warming by two degrees, and Robin McKie, a science writer at The Guardian, has added to this debate by formulating six vital steps that world leaders must take to protect the earth.
McKie agrees that global warming must be kept below two degrees centigrade. This is due to the fact that we have seen unprecedented warming in the last two centuries since the industrial revolution and that a two degree warming from today would be the equivalent two century rise within thirty years. This he states would cause “spreading deserts, worsening storms and widespread flooding’ displacing and killing millions. Secondly he states countries must make “real commitments” to address climate change such as power blocks within the EU to set limits on energy use. Thirdly he believes emissions must be monitored. This may sound obvious, but even today many countries simply are not connected enough to realistically monitor energy use nationally and understand the detail for their usage. He suggests an independent commission is the only way to do this.
To do all this costs money. McKie says that to achieve our green aims we need to see the commitment of developed nations to “pledge billions” to developing countries. This is because developed countries have caused the problems, so it is right that they foot the bill to help developing countries adapt to hotter climates. In fact this has already begun, last week the west agreed a $9.3 dollar green climate fund at a conference in Berlin.
Fifth, McKie says that the most vulnerable countries and areas must be compensated. Areas like Bangladesh and the Maldives island chain are going to see massive sea ingress and flooding, even with a two degree cap. Finally McKie states that “technology must be shared”. Technologies such as tidal power, solar plants and carbon capture technologies must be disseminated amongst developing countries, if we are to see a significant global impact from climate curbing actions. McKie joins a growing number of influential people including celebrities, who are increasingly calling for meaningful action on climate change. Recently Leonardo DiCaprio joined the debate with his film calling for solutions for climate change mitigation. It’s clear there will be much more debate before the talks begin in Paris next year.