100 months to desaster

Scientists and celebrities raise the alarm regard global warming. Prince Charles for example claims that there’re only 100 months left to act. On the Copenhagen Climate Change Summit 2009 the economist Nicholas Stern confronts politicians and scientists with a dire outlook of the future if politicians fail to act swiftly on carbondioxide emissions.

Obviously there is a strong consensus among scientists, that politicians haven’t taken the issue serious enough in the last years. The Bush administration did not only oppose the Kyoto Protocol – it failed to raise the public awareness about the issue, even negated that global warming is a problem at all. As a result 66% of Republican voters think the global warming issue is “exaggregated” (44% of all Americans). Only 41% of the Republicans admit that global warming has started to show effects in nature (76% Democrats). There is even a documentary claiming the whole thing is a swindle to allocate research funds.

The mere difference in these numbers of the Republicans and Democrats show that politicians are responsible! They set the agenda, they rally their voters, they need to act – it is not enough to hope that the market will act upon their behalf. This is not going to happen – or: It will happen too late. The reason for this is that clime change is too slow to be anticipated by individuals or corporations.

Nicholas Stern has estimated two years ago that countries have to invest 1 percent of the GDP to address the climate change issue. If they don’t do that, the cost will consume up two 20 percent of the GDP. And these figures may even be too optimistic.