This article: Why the Petro-Divestment Movement Is Unstoppable is a possible forerunner of things to come.
Why would growing numbers of students and faculty collectively challenge the energy future being actively pursued by our prime minister? The short answer resides in a simple report released by the International Energy Agency (IEA) in 2012, a report estimating that two-thirds of known fossil fuel reserves need to remain in the ground if run-away climate change is to be avoided. The economic implications of these findings are massive.We are in the midst of monumental struggle and we know the outcome in advance. You may disagree, but I have both time and reality on my side.
Since current valuation of fossil fuel companies includes reserves yet to be extracted, keeping these reserves in the ground means trillions of dollars in devaluation. This is the basis for what is increasingly being called the "carbon bubble." This term refers to the inflated value of fossil fuel companies, since current share prices include fossil fuel reserves that are unburnable if we want to maintain the biophysical preconditions for human prosperity. Either the carbon bubble bursts, or climactic stability bursts. A stable climate system is more essential to the human enterprise, by all metrics, than the share prices of one industrial sector.If you doubt this then read on below and we will deal with the sources of your skepticism.
Ouir President may be more on top of things than many realize:
The divestment movement is working to break the political deadlock on climate change by challenging the social license to operate fossil fuel companies still enjoy. This challenge will make it easier for governments to impose the kind of measures that are inevitable, but more effective if implemented sooner. These measures include disincentivizing fossil fuel consumption through robust carbon taxation, and incentivizing clean energy alternatives through large public investments in research, deployment and infrastructure. The divestment movement is helping lay the cultural and political groundwork for accelerated government action.
We in the USA have been partially blinded by massive efforts to deny and misinform that cost billions. The political theater this has created is the topic of many a diary here. Yet a question arises among all this lunacy. How real is the the theater we are are experiencing? Oh it is real in the trivial sense but look deeper.
Unlike the other divisive issues of our time like abortion, for example, the climate change issue is one that transcends human values and actually raises questions about the survival of animals, plants, and a good share of the human race. It, as an issue, links in some vital way to every other important issue we deal with. The link between profits from selling fossil fuels and the state of our global economy is irrefutable. The fact that Thomas Piketty has a best seller out there right now is no coincidence.
Here's an other facet of the same gem:Climate change denial, laissez-faire economics and conspiracy theories: A productive pairing?
Climate change denial, laissez-faire economics, conspiracy theorizing. A new study suggests that these rather diverse belief systems may lie on a continuum. That climate change denialists don’t believe in anthropogenic global warming is a given, but are there other more general indicators of their belief system that include climate change denial as a subset?This should come as no surprise. It should not be necessary to remind anyone that "free market capitalism" is as much a myth as a topic for serious discussion.
This is the question that a group of psychologists from the University of Western Australia and the University of Zurich sought to answer. They found that climate change denialists also seem to display two other characteristics; a belief in laissez-faire capitalism and more troublingly, a tendency to espouse conspiracy theories. The correlation of climate change denial with free market capitalism was stronger and not completely unsurprising but the correlation with a conspiratorial mindset is more unexpected and intriguing.
It is hard to see people who study notions like Sustainability as conspiratorial. It is audacious at best to attack scientists on the grounds that they are fronts for some "movement" secretly designing to take over the world. Yet we are experiencing this theater every day. So what is the meaning of such theater?
Is it that the forces behind denial have something very real to fear? I believe so. They are not so worried about the future of the planet as they are the fragility of the system that makes them rich and powerful. If you had their values and were feeling that threatened you would try anything to hold on. The idea that the system you built could be adapted to the values of a sustainable global economic system is not even near the surface of the fears they feel. What they fear is exposure. Exposure of their many systematic acts aimed at holding on to what they have at all costs. This totally antisocial behavior is something they know will be their downfall.
So we may be watching the beginnings of a dance of death. The dance will be ugly and cause unnecessary harm but they don't care. The web they have woven is too complex and too far reaching. I can't even feel pity for them. They have imprisoned so much of humanity that where they are is the real haven for criminals.
As always when such things unravel, the people who were serving them, for whatever reason, will have been damaged deeply, maybe beyond repair. The times we must pass through now are going to be hard for everyone. The Divestment movement is a forerunner. That which will follow will be monumental. As usual, we really don't need a weatherman to tell which way the winds are blowing.