According to PM Boris Johnson, James Watt, with the invention of the coal fired steam engine initiated climate change and now it will take James Bond to save humanity from doomsday that is already upon us. The bigger challenge we now have is how to find and invest in people and ideas that do not emulate James Watt and teach young minds about the need for much better ideas and inventions that will not hurt the planet even in 250 years. It will still be good to have James Bond as a fictional character and the doomsday scenario limited to movie theatres and live streaming services. Let us ensure we never have to rely on a James Bond.
Einstein is often quoted as the one who defined insanity as “repeating the same process and expecting or anticipating a different result.” For those who have been to 25 COPs and listened to the same arguments and rhetoric, watching 25000 people converge on Glasgow, Scotland is madness or insanity. What a waste of time, money and lot of climate inducing hot air. On the other hand, large gatherings and rooms full of big names and more importantly a room full of cameras does bring out the best in people.
It was good to hear Nepal setting 2045 as the target date for net zero; while one of our neighbors did not turn up and the other set the date as 2070 and called it an elixir. I still cannot understand why these politicians argue and somehow convince their followers that because the west developed by emitting CO2, we should be allowed to do the same.
We should, by the same argument, use slaves and colonize other countries to develop. Why be selective? Extending this argument, a bit further, if one wants to claim loss and damage for the impact of climate change, slavery and colonization, will we not have to pay up some day for our actions today? Should we not take a higher moral stand that a country like Nepal does not want to become prosperous using slavery, looting resources from other countries and people, and harming the planet.
In fact, we should be the beacon and should be easy because Nepal has no coal, petrol or diesel but plenty of water, mountains, top soil, wind, young people and sunlight.
Let us take pride in the fact that we worship the crow, dog, cows, our own body and we aspire to start every new year debt free. The upcoming Chaat festival is the one we need the whole world to celebrate. How great is it that we worship the sun, water and green plants, the only three things humans need to live on earth, and meet all our needs.
As the UN Secretary General said, “We should stop digging”. Everything we dig up seems to bury us all. The current COP26 may be the beginning of the end of insanity with CEOs of fossil fuel companies being grilled, investments moving away from polluting businesses, and young people waking up to the plight of the plant. There is real hope.