Andrew, For the power of words to influence and effect decision makers to make the right decisions, satire is not the place to look. Satire, such as Don’t Look Up, makes one step back and from a distance take notice of the absurdity of it all – especially selfishness at the expense of other. I like the way Don’t Look Up hits sexist stereotypes with the woman going hysterical and the man becoming a stud muffin, and the disparity of wealth where the 1% have the means to save themselves at the expense of those they are supposedly leading (or parenting).

Don’t Look Up works because it is an asteroid that will hit the earth in six plus months – It’s all math. And the filmmaker sets the timer to maximum suspense, which is absurd for deep space astronomy.

The climate calamity will happen if we do not change trends of increasing greenhouse gasses. As you know, In 1846 Stanley developed the steamer in Glasgow launching the industrial revolution. Since then global average temperatures have risen 1.2 degrees Celsius. If temperatures rise another 0.8 degrees to 2 degrees C by 2100, we are totally cooked and done for. Lower lying communities would survive if the temperature rise was kept to 1.5 degrees.

Two phenomena vital to our survival are not being spoken about by the doomsayers for fear people will not follow their prescriptions. One is that there has been an enormous awakening and many changes to detrimental behaviors. For example, more people are employed manufacturing solar panels than by the coal mining industries.

Second phenomena is nature. Life on earth is organizing, responsive and adaptive. Yes the permafrost is full of methane ready to be released when thawed. But no account is taken for the microbes that will chow down on methane as soon as it is released. How much of the sulfur released in ocean deep thermal vents gets very far from the marine life of that place?

What is being said about climate change by pop music and all including Pope Francis is being heard! Never have so many people cared about taking better care of Earth. In Glasgow at COP 26 substantial commitments in the fight against climate change were made:

✅ Ending deforestation. More than 100 world leaders, covering about 85% of the world’s forests, have promised to end and reverse deforestation by 2030.

✅ No more financing international fossil fuel projects. The US and 20 other countries will stop spending $18 billion a year supporting international fossil fuel projects and direct the funds toward clean energy projects in developing countries.

✅ Ending support for overseas coal projects. The world’s 20 biggest economies agreed to end public financing of overseas coal projects. Without government assistance, these investments become less attractive to private investors.

✅ 18 countries agreed to phase out coal by 2031. Eighteen countries, including Poland, Vietnam and Chile, committed to phase out coal by 2031.

✅ Reducing Methane Emissions. Methane/natural gas was addressed for the first time at a COP. 100 countries promised to cut methane emissions 30% by 2030, and the US pledged a 30% reduction by 2050.

✅ Implementation of the Action for Climate Empowerment. Respecting, promoting, and considering their respective obligations on human rights, as well as gender equality and empowerment of women.

If all goals that were committed to in Glasgow were met, we’d experience a 1.8 degree temperature rise. That's not 1.5. So, the work goes on where all generations must speak truths to power (greed), listen locally, and collaborate to develop more robust solutions to climate change before its too late.

Unlike in Don’t Look Up, for the climate crisis actions are being taken and the great ship of state is turning away from collision. Many reasons for doubling down our efforts and cause for hope.

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Rob Moir, Ph.D. is Executive Director of the Ocean River Institute. He writes Clam Chowdah dot org blog and hosts Moir’s Environmental Dialogues iTalk radio.

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Rob Moir

Rob Moir

Rob Moir, Ph.D. is Executive Director of the Ocean River Institute. He writes Clam Chowdah dot org blog and hosts Moir’s Environmental Dialogues iTalk radio.

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