Tuesday, September 22, 2009

As Eli was saying

Barak Obama obviously reads Rabett Run, for in his speech to the UN special meeting on climate change, he said

We must also energize our efforts to put other developing nations—especially the poorest and most vulnerable—on a path to sustainable growth. These nations do not have the same resources to combat climate change as countries like the United States or China do, but they have the most immediate stake in a solution. For these are the nations that are already living with the unfolding effects of a warming planet—famine and drought; disappearing coastal villages and the conflict that arises from scarce resources. Their future is no longer a choice between a growing economy and a cleaner planet, because their survival depends on both. It will do little good to alleviate poverty if you can no longer harvest your crops or find drinkable water.

That is why we have a responsibility to provide the financial and technical assistance needed to help these nations adapt to the impacts of climate change and pursue low-carbon development.
A point that The Rabett has been stressing especially with respect to India (1, 2, 3) but also the other countries that draw drinking water from the rapidly vanishing Himalayan glaciers such as Pakistan and to an extent Bangladesh. Rabett Run, where you read it before it happens.

4 comments:

Martin said...

Yeah. I rubbed my eyes when reading this: is this a politician speaking?

This is the thing called vision. And gamesmanship: he's clearly playing the international card, so the Senate will be required to renege on America's word if they want to bomb the climate bill.

Especially if China and India are already on board, they would have a lot of explaining to do.

Deech56 said...

But do not underestimate the ability of the Senate to kill meaningful legislation. There is a bloc of Senators, and the American public in general, that cares little for global opinion (except in Lonborgian arguments).

jg said...

Thank you for sharing this. It's a joy to get a window into any politician's reading material. Though, if I were president, I wouldn't have time to read Rabett Run (I have to think too long on some of your wit), but I would want my advisors, or their advisors to. More important, it shows a connection to a body of scientific thought that we recognize as credible. So often, what glimpses we get of a politician's intellect and values are those fed us by a politician's rivals (or those summarized in a brief 'God Bless'). Back in the 1990s, I didn't know what to think of Al Gore, I didn't know if it was OK to approve of him. I started reading a book I discovered through public radio, another source I trust, and saw Al Gore had written the introduction. Al was the first politician whom I read through my exploration of science.

Compare this Obama quote and Gore's introduction with my California Assemblyman. I called him to support California's greenhouse gas legislation and got told by his staff that there's no link between the automobile and greenhouse gases and that the majority of science is disproving a greenhouse effect. I asked if we had any reading material in common, Nature? Scientific American? The staffer scoffed at the suggestion.

jg

Anonymous said...

That is why we have a responsibility to provide the financial and technical assistance needed to help these nations adapt to the impacts of climate change and pursue low-carbon development.

huh ha. So with the US running a budget deficit of 13% of GDP Eli suddenly thinks the American government ought to buy tickets in the Florida state lottery?

Is Eli as smart as Obama then?