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Talking about Climate Change with Walter Bauer

In Grade 4, we were asked to practice a safety drill. When the siren sounded, we were to stop what we were doing and immediately hide under our desks. We didn’t know the motive. I don’t recall feeling stressed. We just did what we were told. Years later, I learned the threat had been nuclear war. It didn’t seem to matter that the superpowers had developed enough nuclear weapons that the fallout would kill everything on the planet, including those hiding under desks, hundred times over. We now have an additional existential crisis, Climate Change. The sirens are sounding and our governments continue to ask us, young and old, to hide under our desks. The effects of Climate Change will be far worse and longer lasting than the COVID pandemic. We can debate the decision-making, but with COVID our government acted immediately. We need to do the same with Climate Change, immediately and dramatically reduced our greenhouse gas emissions. Instead of addressing the Climate Change crisis head on, our governments are offering tokenism. The banning of single use plastic for example, while important, is a token, a proverbial drop in the bucket of greenhouse gas emissions. Current policies on carbon tax, coal phase out, carbon capture and storage, zero emission vehicles, transit electrification, retrofits, are very much the same, a start but slow and not enough. Our greenhouse gas emissions continue to rise. Our governments lack the political will to do what needs to be done. Speak out! Walter Bauer, P. Eng.

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