November 10, 2006

Climate change and Africans

Roger Pielke, Jr. writes in The Guardian:
[O]ne of the great puzzles of the debate over climate change is how people who express great concern about the plight of future generations expected to experience the impacts of changes in climate can be simultaneously apparently so callous about those who suffer climate impacts in today's generation. Images of poor people suffering in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina are more often used to justify changes in energy policies than to recommend those adaptive actions that might have an appreciable impact on the lives of those who suffer the effects of today's disasters.
Similarly, Tony Blair, José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero and their friends and alikes express concern about the welfare of future generations but ban poor Africans from selling their products and from coming to work in the UK or Spain. Maybe this is because people from future generations, lacking corporeal existence, are more appealing than Africans made of flesh and bone.

1 comment:

  1. This is problematic as well when characters like Lomborg insist money is better spent lifting up poor starving Africans out of poverty rather than on climate change mitigation when he knows darn well we won't spend money in Africa. A kind of change of topic, so to speak.

    We make no investments in ag infrastructure over there, no low-interest loans for cheap medicine, no devices for clean water.

    Politically, we can't because, you know, that's redistribution of wealth to brown people. Our wealth should stay with the rich west where we can buy yachts.

    My 2¢.

    Best,

    D

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