Welcome to Shaping The Future climate change podcast - In this episode, I speak with Professor Kevin Anderson who is Deputy Director of the UK’s Tyndale Centre for climate change research, he is also a part-time professor at the University of Uppsala in Sweden and even squeezes in a day a week at a university in Norway.
In this episode, we discuss who are the culprits of climate action failure, how coronavirus has shown us we are all equal in society and how solving current inequality is an essential component of solving the climate crisis.
In picking these complex topics apart, we discuss the evolving role of civil society and climate activism by academics that is actually reinforcing the status quo and committing us to fail on our Paris commitments.
Kevin, like Katharine Hayhoe in the previous episode, highlights the job losses and those suffering in industries that are high polluting but nonetheless provide incomes for families. In terms of post-lockdown, Kevin emphasises that it is a choice whether we go back to high emitting business as usual.
Importantly Kevin is not confident that we can hold the temperature rise to 1.5ºC and that it would require serious mitigation efforts combined with effective carbon drawdown technologies (that do not currently exist) in order to achieve it.
Most of all we have to take on board that change in society required to meet these emission reduction challenges are only needed by the top ten per cent. The majority of people are not emitting high amounts of carbon. This again feeds into the need for an agenda of equality and a new narrative of fairness that perhaps the pandemic can make us more aware of.
In the next episode in the series, I will be speaking to Professor Jason Box from the Geological Survey of Denmark. Jason is a Greenland ice sheet expert and is going to share his insights into the changes happening in Greenland and the impact this could have on the overall climate system.
You can also follow Nick Breeze on Twitter here: @NickGBreeze
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