We’ve lived so long under the spell of hierarchy—from god-kings to feudal lords to party bosses—that only recently have we awakened to see not only that “regular” citizens have the capacity for self-governance, but that without their engagement our huge global crises cannot be addressed. The changes needed for human society simply to survive, let alone thrive, are so profound that the only way we will move toward them is if we ourselves, regular citizens, feel meaningful ownership of solutions through direct engagement. Our problems are too big, interrelated, and pervasive to yield to directives from on high.
—Frances Moore Lappé, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Keystone XL's Climate Impact Worse Than Thought: Study

Click here to access article by Andrea Germanos from Common Dreams.

The author bases his article on a recent study posted behind a paywall in a journal published by the reputable Nature Publishing Group. Germanos focuses on the many underestimates of emissions previously cited by government agencies. However, I think he overlooks an important fact when he highlights a quote from an environmentalist:
"It's obvious that Keystone XL isn't going to single-handedly cause or solve climate change," Luísa Abbott Galvão, climate and energy associate at Friends of the Earth, told Common Dreams, but it speaks to what we've "called the 'Keystone principle,' which is the idea that we can't be investing in infrastructure that's going to lock in our fossil fuel reliance."
That missing fact is that a capitalist economy with its growth requirement must rely on the relatively cheap source of energy provided by fossil fuels. There is no promising, alternative, cheap source of energy in sight, and capitalists see that. What they don't see, or refuse to acknowledge, is that cheaply available fossil fuels are diminishing rapidly. This fact, of course, dooms their system which lays so many of their golden eggs of power and wealth. 

However, that fact which they refuse to acknowledge will doom all of us. We will be affected in the near term by more horrors of wars (as we already are) for control of diminishing supplies, and in the long-term by catastrophic climate destabilization. If we of the global Ninety-Nine Percent fail to dismantle the capitalist system and replace it with a sustainable system, we are indeed "fucked".