Thursday, July 28, 2011

Adaptation, justice and morality in a warming world

Jeremy Hance of Mongabay interviews your faithful blogger today. I'm basking in the fame!: If last year was the first in which climate change impacts became apparent worldwide—unprecedented drought and fires in Russia, megaflood in Pakistan, record drought in the Amazon, deadly floods in South America, plus record highs all over the place—this may be the year in which the American public sees climate change as no longer distant and abstract, but happening at home. With burning across the southwest, record drought in Texas, majors flooding in the Midwest, heatwaves everywhere, its becoming harder and harder to ignore the obvious. Climate change consultant and blogger, Brian Thomas, says these patterns are pushing 'prominent scientists' to state "more explicitly that the pattern we're seeing today shows a definite climate change link," but that it may not yet change the public perception in the US.

Thomas, who writes frequently about climate adaptation and justice, says that some governments—local and national—are beginning to act on adapting to a new, warmer, and more unpredictable world. However, many are not moving quickly enough.

"A great many coastal towns and cities are acting as if they have centuries to do with sea level rise. Because the impacts feel like they are a long way off, most people are procrastinating. It's a cognitive problem we face because of the very long-term nature of climate change impacts. The risks are grave, the impacts are here, but the problem doesn't feel urgent," he told in an interview....

Photo of Brian Thomas by Catherine Noren

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