Climate change on the horizon?

climate change

You apparently know when the market is going to crash, when your barber is giving you stock tips.

So what does it say for climate change when the head of a federal bank is warning us about the tragedy on the horizon.

In a few words, something very serious.

Climate change will lead to financial crisis and falling living standards unless the world’s leading countries do more to ensure that their companies come clean about their current and future carbon emissions.

The insurance industry can already taste the crisis and has prepared itself for weather related loss events totaling more than $50bn a year.

But this crisis pales in significance compared to the likely impact on property, migration, political stability as well as food and water security unless companies come clean about their carbon emissions.

In order to limit a global temperature rise to 2 degrees above pre-industrial levels, the carbon budget only amounts to between 20% and 30% of the remaining fossil fuel reserves.

Hence, upto 80% of the remaining oil, gas and coal reserves will be unusable unless offset by carbon-capture technology.

Companies need to measure and disclose what they are emitting today and how they plan their transition to a net-zero world of the future.

Are these the opinions of a lefty, tree-hugging, new age, liberal? Nope this is from the Governor of the Bank of England and chairman of the Financial Stability Board, the international body set up by the G20 in 2009 to monitor risks to the financial system.  You can read it here.

We can all see the tragedy on the horizon, but it remains to be seen if we have the will, the wherewithal and the ability to do something about it.

The G20, whose member states (including South Africa) account for nearly 85% of global emissions has a unique ability to do so.

The next Climate Change Conference is COP21 in Paris on 30th November 2015. We need to ensure that we reach a universal, legally binding agreement that will enable us to combat climate change effectively and boost the transition towards resilient, low-carbon societies and economies.  COP21 – Paris 2015

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