9 February 2009


Whilst it is not possible to link single extreme weather events such as those that led to the current bushfires in Australia to a change in the climate, it can be argued that such events fit a pattern and are a further reminder of the urgent need to address climate change.

The overwhelming scientific consensus is that global warming is occurring, and it is almost certainly the result of human activity. (see the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) Whilst governments around the world are beginning to respond to the issue, again the consensus would be that the measures proposed so far are a case of "far too little, far too late".

As the major contributors to global warming, the economically developed western countries together with the rapidly developing countries with large populations such as China and India, have the particular responsibility to rethink their patterns of energy production and use.

The promotion of alternatives to using fossil fuels (eg coal) for the generation of electricity such as Concentrated Solar Power and for transport (eg oil) such as the electric car is the responsibility of governments. However often governments are more interested in their own survival than in providing visionary leadership so the voice of informed public opinion is crucial to bringing about change.

A simple public campaign in Australia to encourage the installation of solar panels can currently be found at the Cool the Globe website.

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