Climate change and environmental destruction are contentious and disputed topics.
In the US, for instance, there is a powerful faction of Republican politicians who flat-out deny that climate change even exists. In Britain, the Environment Secretary, Owen Patterson, is also a climate change sceptic, oddly enough.
These denials go against science: carbon emissions have increased by 35 per cent since 1990, and climate change is responsible for over 300,000 deaths a year, a figure that could rise to half a million people by 2030. It is blindingly obvious that we are heading towards environmental destruction and any failure to admit this is negligent and dangerous.
The international system has set numerous targets to resolve the crisis, such as the UN Millennium Development Goals on the environment, but they are rarely met. The many environment summits which regularly take place also fail to produce tangible results, with the big powers failing to agree on terms.
The 2011 Durban Climate Change Conference is a case in point – we’re three years later and no agreements have been reached. All these meetings are mere rhetoric aimed at duping the public into thinking that our leaders are taking action.
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