A lot of ethical and concerned people have – quite sensibly – given up. There was period in the late 2000s when some young professionals agonised about whether to fly – either for work or pleasure.
That time, I think (and I have only anecdotes, no data) has passed. And not – as the skeptics would have you believe – because of climategate this or trapped-ship that. No, because the science and the rhetoric has moved on. Anyone who has been paying any attention knows that most climate scientists have, in the last two or three years, come to the conclusion that there is no realistic chance of keeping global warming below 2 degrees above pre-industrial levels. Even if the political will were there (it isn’t) and even if the technology was there (it isn’t) we have left it Too Late.
All that seems to be left is to soften the blows, and to try to create enough mechanisms of democracy and common sense to avoid (or defer!) the predictable spasms of dictatorship, victim-blaming and all around “Kill the pig, stick his throat” ness that awaits.
A revivified climate movement would have to deal with this gloomy outlook, while also answering the “so how will it be different next time” question.
The NGOs, clearly preparing themselves for a 2015 in Paris re-run of 2009 in Copenhagen, are spectacularly poorly equipped to do this, and so, I fear, are the social movement organisation remnants populated by the refugees from Climate Camp and so on.
Answers on a post-card, please.