Mayor Mitchell Landrieu of New Orleans at the meeting in the Vatican could be pleased to hear what other mayors were doing to make cities more resilient and “get a practical guide on climate change.” When Hurricane Katrina hit 10 years ago, he said, his city became “the canary in the coal mine” showing the world how extreme weather associated with climate change can devastate a major city.
Mayor Tony Chammany of Kochi, India said that mitigating climate change and curbing poverty and exploitation cost money and demand investments. Today’s financial crisis is hindering greater efforts. for that reason the greater worldpowers should find solutions to get a better balance between rich and poor and getting their priorities right.
Governments must make the environment and social problems a top priority in public spending.
The American politician currently serving as the 109th mayor of New York City, Bill De Blasio said making an impact will not be easy; Pope Francis’ recent encyclical on creation
“holds individuals accountable for the fate of our planet, but it rightly asks the most of governments.”
People are being
“pushed by the highest moral authority to take the next step, no matter how challenging it appears to be,”
California Gov Jerry Brown said in his speech that there is “fierce opposition and blind inertia” to moving away from dependence on petroleum and coal. And, he said,
“that opposition is well financed — hundreds of millions of dollars are going into propaganda, to falsifying the scientific record, bamboozling people of every country.”
Mayor Kagiso Thutlwe of Gaborone, Botswana, told CNS that he disagrees with claims that radically reducing greenhouse gas emissions will hurt development.
“There was a period when our forefathers didn’t know anything about development,”
he said. That changed when outside assistance brought in modern methods
“and this development is now making us be engaged with the world”
and getting his people access to new technologies, he said.
In fact, Thutlwe said he sees public-private partnerships as being key to growing a more “green” development, for example by partnering with solar-panel companies to exploit his country’s abundance of sunshine and get needed electricity to more people.
Mayor Angela Brown-Burke of Kingston, Jamaica, told CNS that if local people have no options, they will continue to use polluting fuels.
“People aren’t stubborn. They are trying to make a living,” she said. “They say, ‘If I need fuel, don’t tell me not to cut down my trees because that’s the only way I am going to be able to cook my food.’”
Communities will need to provide the alternatives if any of the environmental awareness campaigns are going to work, she said.
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- In The End
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Excellent post. Thank you for sharing so many positive quotes from people in authority – it’s gives us hope when you put it all together like that. That’s so right – that ordinary people need to be provided with alternatives to fossil fuels and to cutting down trees. Governments need to invest heavily in renewable energy. Then we could really turn things around. Thanks Marcus 🙂
Reblogged this on Corporate Skirts and commented:
More often then not, people are not thinking of the long term effect of their choices because they are busy trying to meet immediate needs. In discussions and policy debates, we need to start putting the need of our future generations first to start making a dent to the damage that we are causing to our environment now.
thanks for sharing this message and spreading the call to react wisely, thinking of the next generations. The damage done by the technical revolution, in the 19-20 century, we cannot screw back, but we can learn form the disastrous consequences and avoid further damage. It is not yet to late to take action and to avoid further pollution.
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