A draft report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) states: “The worst is yet to come, affecting our children’s and grandchildren’s lives much more than our own.” It reiterates that we have to act now to avoid runaway climate change.
Before Saturday, it is simple. Boris should be brave. He should cancel overseas fossil fuel finance. But he should do more. To encourage others to do the above, he should also follow Denmark’s lead and cancel the next round of oil and gas licensing, and end all future exploration in the UK North Sea.
For those hoping that the duel whammy of the pandemic and our climate emergency would belatedly and finally pivot Exxon away from fossil fuels, this is not going to happen. The company just wants to carry on drilling.
Some of the world’s worst polluting companies, including BP and Shell, have been regularly lobbying the UK Government offering money to be part of next year’s UN COP26 conference.
We are in a climate emergency. The warnings from Antarctica are real. The message is simple. Big Oil is not to be trusted as driving the solution to the problem they created.
Shell, a company often vilified for being complicit in human rights abuses in Nigeria, of rampant pollution and ignoring the risks of climate change for decades, belatedly wants us to believe it is central to the climate fight.
As yet another UN climate summit draws to a close without showing any real sense of urgency commensurate to our climate emergency, campaigners have criticised the UN process for being in a “parallel universe” and being riddled with conflicts.
“Instead of kicking out these polluters, the UNFCCC 25th Conferences of the Parties (COP25) kicked out the people. Instead of listening to our voices, they attempted to silence us.”
We’re blowing through our carbon budget the way an addict blows through cash. At a time when carbon dioxide pollution is higher than it’s ever been.
Trump’s actions may make Big Oil Executives richer in the short term, but they make all of us poorer in the long-term. In the meantime, the U.S. remains a land on fire, a land that cannot breathe. And a land being led by a fossil fool.