This letter is the original of that published in the Independent on 17th April
Climate change: time is shorter than we thought
All these changes are irreversible. They make maintaining the global temperature rise below 2oC an illusory goal. The unavoidable outcome of this nightmare scenario is a rapidly deteriorating climatic situation. It will pose grave problems for all aspects of society in the short-term and certainly well before the end of the next parliament.
The effects will be as profoundly economical as ecological and are already evident. The mitigation actions needed are colossal. They will drive up energy demand at a time when international agreements on climate change will require the imposition of strict limits on carbon emissions and drive up public expenditure as tax receipts from economic growth shrink.
The future of all nations is irrevocably and immediately threatened. Yet we see little to no discussion of this by any of the main political parties during this general election campaign. We therefore request for the benefit of the electorate and as a matter of urgency that all parties specifically set down clearly what policies they propose on the following:
Prof Paul Beckwith (Climatologist, University of Ottawa)