Monday, May 27, 2013
Text of my 3 min talk at the Swindon Think Slam:
I will walk you down the frightening path that humanity must travel together if it is to survive.
Today we are standing on the edge of the abyss.
We face 2 existential threats, runway climate change and nuclear war.
These are the flip sides to the same coin, industrialisation.
150 years of industrialisation had caused atmospheric CO2 to exceed the safe limit to avoid runaway climate change. Today CO2 is increasing super exponentially.
Despite 18 rounds of international climate change talks with all the best intentions, they have led to 18 failures. To think the 19th will succeed is naivety.
Industrialisation has also brought the military industrial complex. There is a symbiotic relationship between the two. You cannot have a military industrial complex without a industrialisation and industrialising nations need a military industrial complex to secure resources.
The apex of this is the possession of nuclear weapons.
As our planet becomes more unstable due to the climate change caused by industrialisation governments around the world will seek and are seeking protection by nuclear weapons. This leaves the nuclear non proliferation treaty fit only for the bin.
This comes at a huge price. To build a credible nuclear threat a massive military industrial complex is needed and this must be funded by an exponentially expanding economy to raise the taxes.
A carbon intensive military industrial complex and expanding economy are the antithesis of what is needed to tackle climate change and resource depletion. Building these increases the risk they are trying to protect against. It is the ultimate death spiral.
We have no choice. If we want to tackle climate change we must put nuclear weapons on the climate change negotiating tables. This will cause the most profound changes in the history of humanity.
Only this will enable the deadlock in climate change and NPT talks to be broken. Doing this will not guarantee success in the fight against climate change, but failure to do so will guarantee failure.