The summer is fully upon us now, and other than the odd cool day, it’s been a hot one so far. It’s hard to be able to tell anecdotally, but it seems like every year that I have lived here, it’s gotten hotter. And I have been and remain concerned, because the data from non-anecdotal sources is clear and unambiguous. The globe is getting much warmer. Personally, I work indoors for the most part, and should I feel the need, I can afford air conditioning — but there’s obviously far more to this than that. I am torn between despair and cynicism for the future of our world.
I have been reading the latest Papal Encyclical, Laudato Si’, and I cannot agree more with Pope Francis on this. I can only pray that it is sufficient to spur more action from the global community. There has been some action to date, and there are far more renewables in use than ever before, but it’s simply not enough. The best way forward is probably a straight-up carbon tax that is enforced globally, but it’s hard to see that happening anytime soon. The political will for it just isn’t there at present. That said, the number of natural disasters that have happened in the last decade or so are starting to change the public perception of the problem. That can only be a positive development.
I think one of the biggest problems here is the moral one that Pope Francis highlights, namely that it is the poor that will suffer disproportionately for our dithering. As has repeatedly been shown in incidents like Hurricane Katrina and othe natural disasters, it’s the disenfrachised that take it on the chin, that can’t afford to simply get air conditioning or move to other countries where drought or flooding haven’t taken hold. This is to me the most baffling element of this whole debacle — why have so many Christians by and large sided with the polluters?! This is my stand; I won’t vote for or support leadership that chooses willful blindness over action and enlightenment.