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Nobel peace prize; time for IPCC and Gore to address the inconvenient truth of militarism PDF Print E-mail
Peace News
Thursday, 11 October 2007 23:47
Nobel peace prize; time for IPCC and Gore to address the inconvenient truth of militarism

PEJ News- Joan Russow- Global Compliance Research Project - Now that the Nobel Peace Committee has recognized that climate change is a peace issue, and that the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and Al Gore are disserving recipients of the Nobel Peace prize , the IPCC and Gore must finally expose the
Militarism, nuclear power also 'inconvenient truths'
Al Gore missed an opportunity to expand the scope of his warnings

Joan Russow, Times Colonist
Published: Friday, October 05, 2007

Al Gore's documentary An Inconvenient Truth has successfully raised the profile of climate change. After almost 50 years of unheeded warnings, the

human-generated causes of climate change are finally being taken seriously.

During his presentation in Victoria, Gore spoke of a "planetary emergency" and said "we have to get over denial and moral cowardice ... it is important for individuals to be part of the solution, but it requires the changing of laws and politics."

These announcements are not new. It would have been new and welcome, however, if Gore had announced two more films -- An Even More Inconvenient Truth: Nuclear Power is Not the Answer and The Most Inconvenient Truth: Militarism and greenhouse-gas emissions.

Gore is right. Laws have to be in place to compel governments to end years of procrastination and fulfill their commitments to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions and conserve carbon sinks.

In 1988, scientists, politicians and non-government organizations at the Changing Atmosphere Conference in Toronto acknowledged that "the stabilizing of the atmospheric concentrations of CO2 is an imperative goal. It is currently estimated to require reductions of more than 50 per cent from present [1988] emission levels. Energy research and development budgets must be massively directed to energy options which would eliminate or greatly reduce CO2 emissions and to studies undertaken to further refine the target reductions."

They warned that "Humanity is conducting an unintended, uncontrolled, globally pervasive experiment whose ultimate consequence could be second only to a global nuclear war and that it is imperative to act now."

Governments, coerced into inaction by industry, industry front groups and industry-controlled states, have failed to address the urgency of the crisis and enact effective legislation.

Governments must stop subsidizing the fossil-fuel and military industries, redirect military expenses and discontinue the promotion of nuclear energy, the most hazardous and expensive form of energy known, as the solution to climate change.

Corporations and policymakers are talking about nuclear energy as the solution to climate change. However, nuclear energy, with its radioactive footprint and its inextricable link to the development of nuclear arms, including depleted uranium in weapon systems, is not a solution. Gore should not be ambivalent about nuclear energy.

During a recent United Nations conference on climate change, several representatives of the NGO community involved in militarism and nuclear matters and in the peace caucus drafted a statement expressing concern about the failure of international bodies to address the impact of militarism on climate change. This statement was presented to the chairman of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

If leaders are to address the challenge of climate change they cannot ignore the impact of militarism on climate change. The statement called for the International Atomic Energy Agency to end the promotion of nuclear energy as the solution to climate change.

The statement called on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change to estimate the military's impact on greenhouse-gas emissions and demand that each state release information related to greenhouse-gas emissions from the weapons production and testing, military exercises, war games, military aviation, environmental warfare, military operations and reconstruction after acts of violent intervention.

The statement also called for NATO to be disbanded, saying it has contributed to the scourge of war and the violation of international peremptory norms, and produced a substantial volume of greenhouse-gas emissions.

And the NGOs called for "global military budgets to be reallocated to global social justice."

If citizens are willing to do their part in reducing greenhouse gas emissions, member states of the United Nations must stop subsidizing the fossil fuel and military industries and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) must discontinue its promotion of nuclear energy
Last Updated on Thursday, 11 October 2007 23:47

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