Environment and climate emergency: turning words into action
As a result of widespread protests, the British Parliament has taken the lead in reducing carbon emissions to zero.
Hamburg/London, 3 May 2019. While today the young activists of Fridays for Future will be protesting again in over 72 countries in 725 cities, the World Future Council welcomes the historic decision of the British House of Parliament to declare a formal environment and climate change emergency.
This decision, taken earlier this week, was a direct response to the vigorous and widely reported campaign by the school climate strikers of Fridays for Future and groups such as Extinction Rebellion. Following the vote in London, a similar one in the Welsh Parliament in Cardiff and a declaration from the First Minister of Scotland. Hundreds of Councils across the UK have joined the announcement. Other cities like Vancouver, Oakland, Los Angeles, Basel, and Constance have also declared the climate emergency.
“The UK, the pioneer of the coal-based industrial revolution, is now the first country to formally concede the reality of a climate (and earth) emergency,” says Prof. Herbert Girardet, Co-Founder of the World Future Council. “The current envisioning of a legally binding target to cut greenhouse gas emissions to zero by 2050 it is to be greatly welcomed. While it may cost up to 2% of Britain’s GDP to reach this target, it is now clearly understood that not acting would be far more expensive. Britain may now take the lead in initiating a green industrial revolution, delivering a cleaner and healthier society while bolstering the UK economy and creating jobs.”
The World Future Council welcomes these developments. As the “voice of future generations”, the foundation has worked with legislators and political decision makers for over a decade to improve policy frameworks across the world. It is therefore committed to supporting legislators in turning these words into action and will strongly encourage other countries and cities to follow Britain’s lead.
Vandana Shiva, Councilor of the World Future Council and Founder of Navdanya, India: “The declaration of an environment and climate change emergency means that we must address root causes and start the transition. Half of all greenhouse gases emissions come from fossil fuel-based industrial agriculture. Biodiversity and agroecology have the potential to entirely stop man-made mass extinction and reducing excess carbon and nitrogen from the atmosphere.”
The World Future Council has identified key policy solutions that already proved successful and can support other legislators in responding to the climate emergency.
More information can be found on www.worldfuturecouncil.org
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