George Monbiot looks back in regret at Copenhagen :-
“…The closer it comes, the worse it looks. The best outcome anyone now expects from December’s climate summit in Mexico is that some delegates might stay awake during the meetings. When talks fail once, as they did in Copenhagen, governments lose interest. They don’t want to be associated with failure, they don’t want to pour time and energy into a broken process. Nine years after the world trade negotiations moved to Mexico after failing in Qatar, they remain in diplomatic limbo. Nothing in the preparations for the climate talks suggests any other outcome…”
Copenhagen was never seriously going to deliver, and I don’t think most of the protesters on the streets in Copenhagen thought so. Activist demands, including from activist nations, were always going to be ignored, The solutions really didn’t come to the conference, and the problems really lay elsewhere.
But there’s no need to utterly despair, George !
You ask, “Climate change enlightenment was fun while it lasted. But now it’s dead : The collapse of the talks at Copenhagen took away all momentum for change and the lobbyists are back in control. So what next?”, and the two most obvious things to say are :-
a. The media have failed the public.
b. The big institutions working on global issues, such as the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, have failed to perceive and deflect political attacks.
David Cromwell and David Edwards of MediaLens write :-
“Re: The battle against climate change is now over. Climate change won. : Posted by The Editors on September 21, 2010, 9:07 am, in reply to “The battle against climate change is now over. Climate change won.” : Monbiot: “To compensate for our weakness, we indulged a fantasy of benign paternalistic power – acting, though the political mechanisms were inscrutable, in the wider interests of humankind. We allowed ourselves to believe that, with a little prompting and protest, somewhere, in a distant institutional sphere, compromised but decent people would take care of us. They won’t. They weren’t ever going to do so. So what do we do now?”. We turn on the corporate media that are a huge part of this problem. The attitude of the Greens to the media has always been pitiful. Time and again groups like Greenpeace, Friends of the Earth and the Green Party have told us, ‘We have to maintain good relations with the media.’ But if the world is sleeping, the mainstream media is the great corporate sandman. It really is time to wake up about that. Working through the media does not work. Eds”
Declaring war on the media is quite a bold call. A great number of people straddle and cross the boundaries between science communications and media. Should we ask everyone to step outside the publishing house circus ?
And would we see a different flavour from the writings of those such as Richard Black and Roger Harrabin if they were to quit the BBC ?
Is George Monbiot’s position compromised by continuing to write for The Guardian ? This is a question that has been posed by MediaLens contributors in the past.
Opinion is varied on that. But what is clear is that new non-traditional organisations have the opportunity to take on the role of being the best communicators on Climate Change.
Trouble is, currently that’s mostly the sceptic-deniers. But that could change, and that is maybe what George Monbiot could promote – New Media on accurate Climate Change Science reporting.
George, George, you wonderfully caring fellow, you should keep your spirits up – there are masses of people out there, all over the world, planting trees, growing organic crops, cycling their whole lives, building sustainably and putting up wind turbines – bypassing the politicking and posturing on Climate Change policy and just getting on with the things that need to be done. Quite economically beneficial, too, sometimes.
Get back your positive perspective, George, do. Chin up, old man !
Come, call with us for a truly sustainable media, outside the press barons’ nosebags and troughs. Let us tell the whole, unwholesome, worrisome narrative of the Climate Change Science, and let’s make Climate Change policy a voting-worthy issue !