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So as the politicians talk down the likelihood of a binding deal at Copenhagen, the science is saying things are getting bleaker. It looks more likely that we are heading for the nightmare scenario of 6 degrees rise – if we continue on the path we are on. And unless emissions level off in the next few years it may all be too late.

As Marcus Brigstocke said on Radio 4’s Now Show about this year’s greenwashed UK Budget “All part of the ongoing policy to leave responses to climate change just a little bit too late.”

Someone asked me last week why governments aren’t taking urgent action now – what do they know that we don’t? Now I trust governments as far as I could throw them, ie very little – having been an activist – or should that be “domestic extremist” – for 25 years. But the reason that they aren’t is that they are either frightened of rocking the boat (Gordon Brown according to someone who knows him) or totally in the pocket of big business, especially oil (as George W Bush was). It is absolutely not that they know that Climate Change is all a con – cooked up as a conspiracy. The conspiracy is by big multinationals to prevent anything that hits their short-term profits – humanity can go to hell in a handcart for all they care.

Green activists like me have been campaigning for governments to pay attention to this issue for years. Greens in the European Parliament have worked tirelessly to get legislation passed which would push national governments in the right direction – and they’ve managed to get some through despite tough opposition particularly from the right, including of course our Tory MEP, Martin Callanan, who sat on the Environment Committee in the last parliament and singlehandedly defeated rigourous measures or kicked them way into the long grass of decades away.

The way climate change deniers and sceptics talk you would think that the Green Party was in government and was forcing people to accept carbon rationing now – if only that were true! I am not a fanatic who accepts everything that scientists say as gospel truth – you only have to think of scientists involvement in GM crops, vivisection, nuclear weapons (actually any sort of weapons!). But the risk of them being right on climate chaos is too great to ignore. I have a ten year old son and the nightmare scenario will play out in his lifetime if we carry on with business as usual.

But business as usual is wrong on so many counts anyway, that even if the climate change theory is wrong if we do the things we need to avoid it we will benefit humanity anyway. I would rather have well-insulated houses and no fuel poverty, energy security with renewables, community-scale clean power generation keeping the profits in the community, cheap, plentiful public transport, communities where you can live and work, walking and cycling almost everywhere you need, zero waste, local organic food, international peace without energy and water wars and appalling poverty fuelling migration – rather than the world we have right now.


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