Climate change: Getting our own house in order

Climate change: Getting our own house in order

THERE were two global developments on climate change yesterday – one gloomy and one hopeful — while, at home, new levies on plastic bags, disposable cups and waste disposal have been proposed by the Government.

Chinese leader Xi Jinping and French President Emmanuel Macron have declared that the Paris climate pact is “irreversible”, after the United States formally withdrew from the accord this week.

At the same time, more than 11,000 scientists in 153 nations have endorsed a newly published statement on climate change. The statement, published in the journal BioScience, declares that “the climate crisis has arrived and is accelerating faster than most scientists expected. We declare clearly and unequivocally that planet Earth is facing a climate emergency. To secure a sustainable future, we must change how we live.”

That was also the message from Minister Richard Bruton as he announced measures he said were aimed at encouraging more sustainable behaviour and were a key part of the Government’s Climate Action Plan.

The scientists’ warning makes any adverse reaction to the Irish government’s so-called ‘latte levy’ a storm in a disposable tea-cup. Considering the crisis before us, refraining from using disposable cups is not a lot to ask but could make a real contribution to more sustainable living.

More on this topic

Greta Thunberg mobbed as she arrives in Madrid for climate change meetingGreta Thunberg mobbed as she arrives in Madrid for climate change meeting

Greta Thunberg arrives in Madrid for climate change marchGreta Thunberg arrives in Madrid for climate change march

Government inaction on clean air strategyGovernment inaction on clean air strategy

Satellites aiming to measure carbon emissions ‘will not be used to police world’ say EUSatellites aiming to measure carbon emissions ‘will not be used to police world’ say EU

More in this Section

Brexit ‘will present a tsunami of building opportunities’Brexit ‘will present a tsunami of building opportunities’

FAI not only ones with questions to answerFAI not only ones with questions to answer

Louise O'Neill: We want to be conscientious consumers, but we still want our lives to be easyLouise O'Neill: We want to be conscientious consumers, but we still want our lives to be easy

Standard of mental health care should not be toleratedStandard of mental health care should not be tolerated


Lifestyle

As we wait, eager and giddy, a collective shudder of agitated ardor ripples through the theatre, like a Late, Late Toyshow audience when they KNOW Ryan’s going to give them another €150 voucher. Suddenly, a voice booms from the stage. Everyone erupts, whooping and cheering. And that was just for the safety announcement.Everyman's outstanding Jack and the Beanstalk ticks all panto boxes

Every band needs a Bez. In fact, there’s a case to be made that every workplace in the country could do with the Happy Mondays’ vibes man. Somebody to jump up with a pair of maracas and shake up the energy when things begin to flag.Happy Mondays create cheery Tuesday in Cork gig

More From The Irish Examiner