Climate briefing for activists, more Tory Covid failure, Clarks strikers fight fire-and-rehire, Scotland’s wider crisis, socialism explained and more in this month’s Counterfire freesheet
This time, the stakes really are existential.
Melville’s epic novel about life aboard a wayward whaling ship holds lessons for the climate crisis today.
Resolving the climate crisis isn’t just about shifting from one technology to another; it’s about shifting our ways of thinking and being. It’s a point that often gets missed in conversations about major greenhouse gas emission sources.
COP 26 reaffirmed what has been obvious from the beginning: the Northern colonial and capitalist states most responsible for creating the climate crisis are unwilling to place people before profits in order to address the planet’s looming ecological collapse and humanitarian catastrophe.
And yet, the planet has so far only warmed 1.2° Celsius (2.2° F) since pre-industrial times. We already have the technology we need to convert our energy systems to clean, renewable energy, and doing so would create millions of good jobs for people all over the world. So, in practical terms, the steps we must take are clear, achievable and urgent.The greatest obstacle to action that we face is our dysfunctional, neoliberal political and economic system and its control by plutocratic and corporate interests, who are determined to keep profiting from fossil fuels even at the cost of destroying the Earth’s uniquely livable climate. The climate crisis has exposed this system’s structural inability to act in the real interests of humanity, even when our very future hangs in the balance.