The UN’s climate change panel, the IPCC, says that it is ‘code red for humanity’; that a rise of 1.5°C in global temperatures is unavoidable over the next few decades and rises above that are likely unless there is a major shift in how the world is organised. This will bring with it devastating consequences and misery for millions of people.
This report will come as no surprise. It has been clear for some time that, without change, there is no stable future on offer for most young and working-class people. There is no future on offer that includes a secure and well-paid job, a decent home, and even a planet on which we can live comfortably and safely.
The leaders of the capitalist world gather in Glasgow to discuss what to do about the climate crisis. They know that people are angry at their inaction and the continuation of the polluting status quo. There will be pressure on them to come out with new agreements and be seen to be doing something about the issue. But as was shown when Trump pulled out of the Paris Accords, whatever is agreed won’t be worth the paper it’s printed on. And not only that, it is likely to be too little too late.
In Britain, the Tory government has pledged to make ‘the UK carbon neutral’ – but not until 2050. This is miles off what is actually needed.
The previous IPCC report calculated the cost of the measures that would need to be carried out to prevent climate catastrophe would be $900 billion a year.
The wealth and resources do exist, but they are in the hands of the super-rich. The major corporations that dominate the economy are responsible for the bulk of carbon emissions, and there is no prospect of them accepting a $900 billion hit to their profits in order to take the action needed.
Therefore we fight for the nationalisation of the big businesses, the banks and other financial institutions under democratic workers’ control. Wealth and resources could then be democratically planned to meet the needs of people and the planet. To make sure it is not workers and the poor who pay for the environmental crisis, and to secure a decent future for all.