John continues with the debate on Gobal Warming
Thank you to Cyril Marsters for lending some words of wisdom last month to the issues I have been bangin' on about. His observations about the problems with food supply are particularly astute. It is hard not to take the apparent abundance of food for granted for granted, though in reality we have at best only two days supply of food available to us through a centralised highly oil dependant production and distribution system.
Concerns about transport (I agree with Peter Bodle about hybrid cars, the Prius is an eco trinket, I couldn't afford one and apparently the battery is rubbish) and technology pale into insignificance, when faced with a food production and distribution system that lacks resilience. It is said civilisation is only four meals deep.
The food price spike last year was not unconnected to the Problems of oil supply. The pressure on making land available for "Biofuels" (an oxymoron if there ever was one) has forced the price of staple crops upwards. So whilst food riots spread across the third world. Here in affluent Britain lawns were dug up for growing vegetables and a surge in demands for allotments has put pressure on local authorities to meet this demand. Stoke Ferry is in this situation right now.
Last October "Downham and Villages in Transition" ran a large event in Downham Town Hall called "Our Food our Future". The event consisted of speakers, stalls, films, seed swapping and most important food. Feedback was very positive. It is our intention to bring an offspring this event to Stoke Ferry and villages around the weekend of March 21st anyone interested is welcome participate, you may have ideas we haven't thought of. Call 01366 502106 for more information.
Other things; Peter Bodle claims the links between Global warming and hurricanes is false. May I use the phrase "Climate Instability" coined by Vandana Shiva as a response to the global warming deniers. Extreme weather events are well on the up floods, droughts, species extinction, (if we looked at these occurrences as a "canary in the cage") perhaps we would see the real danger that a path of vacillation and inaction leaves for us and our immediate generations.
This is one thing that emerged amidst the disgrace that was the COP15 Copenhagen Climate Conference. Levels of consumption today represent scarcity tomorrow. We rob our children of their birthright, whilst selling them wholesale trivia and distraction. Copenhagen was a stitch up by the US and their wealthy friends us included. African nations and Island nations are condemned to extinction if the current meagre proposals stay in place. Most of the NGO's were excluded from the conference on day ten whilst corporate lobbyists continued to slime the conference. Vested interests overruled humanity and compassion. The police handcuffed thousands of protesters laying them end to end on the freezing streets for up to two hours, not even allowing them to take a pee. Some pee'd their pants they were then held in buses for a further two hours before being released without charge. Democracy in shambles.
But there is hope! Hundreds of thousands of people converged on Copenhagen to campaign, protest and hold their (our) own conference, with the genuine intent of creating solutions to our many crises'. The Klima Forum conference was everything that COP15 wasn't. There is little about it in the mainstream media (little surprise) but it is a mass movement. Those clinging to power are aware of this growing movement. It happens on the streets and in your back garden. That's where "Acting locally" come in.