Wednesday, May 06, 2015

An Elephant in the Polling Booth

In 1978, as the Ecology Party's representative on the wonderfully named Parliamentary Liaison Committee for Alternative Energy Strategies, I met Tony Benn, then the Energy Minister.  He dismissed us as a 'single issue party', dismissed our call for renewable energy and said that nuclear generated electricity would be too cheap to meter. He was wrong, on both counts, as he came to admit in latter days when his position became almost indistinguishable from that of the Green Party.

Still the Green Party is criticised as being a single issue Party, but now we hear another criticism, that we have been too quiet about the environment.  Rocks and hard places come to mind.

The overwhelming failure of the election campaign, and UK politics in general, is the almost complete absence of discussion about global warming and climate change.  So focussed are we on the minutiae of daily life, little things that only affect the present generation for the next few years, the NHS, education, pensions, transport, Scottish independence, austerity, migration, bankers' bonuses, energy costs, Trident replacement, tactical voting and what have you. None of these things, however excited we may get about them, represent an existential crisis for the very future of human civilisation.

Our society, led by all the powers that be, is heading for global warming of several degrees. 4 degrees, 6 degrees, more, who knows, but the certainty is that the trajectory we are currently on leads to a future which is not survivable. Let me repeat that: the trajectory we are currently on leads to a future which is not survivable.  And I've not heard any politician outside the Green Party say that. 

Which is why I'm voting Green. Nothing else really matters.


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