Professor Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, adviser to German government and Pope Francis, said on Friday: “In the end it is a moral decision. Do you want to be part of the generation that screwed up the planet for the next 1,000 years? I don’t think we should make that decision.”..Schellnhuber was speaking at a major science conference in Paris, taking place before a crunch UN summit in December, .. World leaders were sent a stark message in communique.. warned that opportunity to avoid disaster rapidly diminishing…induced implosion of carbon economy over the next 20-30 years. Otherwise we have no chance of avoiding dangerous, perhaps disastrous, climate change.”
“The promise of the fossil fuel age has never been fulfilled,” he said. “We still have 2bn people living on $2 (£1.30) a day – that is crazy.” He called for two strong messages: that “the age of carbon is over” and that “it is not the poor of the world who will pay for the transition”.
To achieve these outcomes, Schellnhuber said: “We need a global social movement and it is already happening.” He said the best analogy for the transition from dirty to clean energy was abolition of slavery, which was fundamentally driven by ethical concerns…tackling climate change is economically affordable, but nations “waiting on the sidelines” will cause costs to rise…Stiglitz backed affordability of tackling climate change: “Creating a green economy is not only consistent with economic growth, it can promote economic growth,” especially when there is a lack of demand in the global economy.
He said the best option for an enforceable climate deal was for willing countries to introduce carbon taxes and then penalise nations refusing to do the same with border taxes on their exported goods…A voluntary agreement cannot solve the climate crisis, he said: “The atmosphere is a public good – all want to get the benefits, but no one wants to pay the cost.” He also dismissed carbon markets as being too prone to political lobbying: “It is basically giving away money.”