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Thoughts about the relationships between transport and the urban area it serves

Don’t kill the planet in the name of saving the economy

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Johann Hari : The Independent (UK)

A fine, if long, opinion piece which continues the discussion on how the current finance meltdown seems to be diverting attention to the very much bigger problem facing us.

By the summer of 2013, the Arctic will be free of ice. How big an event it this?

The Wall Street Crash hadn’t happened for 80 years. The Arctic Crash hasn’t happened for three million years: that’s the last time there was watery emptiness at the top of the world. The Arctic is often described as the canary in the coal mine. As one Arctic researcher put it to me this week: the canary is dead. It’s time to clear the mine, and run.

It is written from a European persepctive, becuase it actually seems likely that something positive is likely to happen there. If Mr Obama is elected President things might happen there. But in Canada and BC I am far less optimistic. The oil sands will no doubt continue to ramp up, Campbell is now pushing for coastal drilling and no doubt before too long we will be hauling up the gas hydrates too.

Then, as the climatologist Professor Marty Hoffert says: “Somebody will visit in a few hundred million years and find there were some intelligent beings who lived here for a while, but just couldn’t handle the transition from being hunter-gatherers to high technology.”

Written by Stephen Rees

October 21, 2008 at 2:48 pm

Posted in energy, Environment

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