Dear Prime Minister
Long-time member of Green Christian, Reggie Norton, writes an impassioned letter to the leader of our country in response to the new oil and gas licences.
Dear Prime Minister,
Forgive my having to disturb your holiday time but I feel a strong moral responsibility to let you know what I feel about your recent new policy with respect to climate change. (I do not believe it was approved by your legal advisers on climate change the Climate Change Committee.)
I will be 90 in November and want, before dying, to believe we are on a path to solving the rising global temperature that, unless we take drastic action now, will create an uninhabitable world.
We all have a moral obligation to do all we can to ensure we leave our children and future generations a liveable world.
I first started working on climate change in January 2000, when I found out that unless politicians on a worldwide basis took action we would get irreversible runaway climate change that would in time lead to the extinction of the human race.
Because of the failure of the representatives of all the nations of the world to do this in any of the COP meetings organised under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) we are now on that path to destruction.
As Prime Minister you have a national and international responsibility that includes not just national political considerations, but the necessary scientific ones too.
The thousands of scientists, appointed by governments, that form the Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) have made it quite clear, and keep on repeating, that to keep to the agreed global temperature to not more than 1.5C above pre-industrial times we need all G20 countries, who are the ones that emit 75% of global emissions, to engage in a rapid and massive reduction of emissions.
And what is clear is that the IPCC, as well as other scientists, say that this has not been done and needs doing urgently!
(Please see in the Guardian of the 23 August, page 15, G20 poured more than $11tn into fossil fuels subsidies despite Cop26 pledges which shows that G20 countries are not on track to do what is necessary to reduce the global temperature.)
It is essential you make sure at the coming G20 meeting that all those countries stop this funding AND engage in a massive and rapid reduction of emissions to avoid climate disaster.
It is because of this, Prime Minister, that your policy of offering to approve 100 new licences for exploration of fossil fuels, is unacceptable and should be withdrawn as soon as possible. This policy would not produce the extra oil and gas that you feel we need in time in any case.
In fact, renewables are available and could solve any needs, whilst exploration for fossil fuels under you new licences , would produce millions of more tons of emissions which could lead to irreversible climate change.
The atrocious present climate situation, that seems to get worse every day, and that we should be doing all possible to control and reduce for the sake of all the people in the world, is causing enormous harm and destruction to the poorest countries in the world whose emissions are extremely low and who are not being compensated properly for the damage they are suffering, that has been caused by the emissions of the G20 nations, as well as by some other countries.
Prime Minister, your present policy has damaged our country’s international reputation and needs correcting. Please change it and do what I have suggested above to make all other G20 countries do what is really needed-the rapid and massive reduction of emissions NOW.
All those in the world, especially the next generation, who fear for their future, will be tremendously grateful and future generations will call you the saviour of humankind from ultimate disaster.
PS I enclose copies of an article from the 29 August Guardian by 46 scientists that confirms what I have written above of the need for G20 countries to engage in an urgent and massive reduction of emissions to avoid disaster. Take action! RN.
Previous: Fire and Ice