“Let’s make the next 100 years the best of centuries”

The state of the climate – and what we might do about it

The well-known economist Nicholas Stern recently delivered a ‘TED’ talk entitled, ‘The State of the Climate and what we might do about it’.  He opens the talk with these words; “We are at a remarkable moment in time. We face over the next two decades two fundamental transformations [in the structure of economies /societies worldwide and in the planet’s climate] that will determine whether the next 100 years is the best of centuries or the worst of centuries.” His closing words are;Are we going to look our grandchildren in the eye and tell them that we understood the issues, that we recognised the dangers and the opportunities, and still we failed to act? Surely not. Let’s make the next 100 years the best of centuries.” The full 16 minute talk can be viewed online at www.ted.com.

Ban Ki-Moon, Secretary – General of the UN says: “Future generations will judge our actions on climate change”.   Last week at the UN Summit in New York on climate change, 120 government leaders each made 4 minute speeches. While no decisions were made at the summit, it has however highlighted the urgent need for agreement by these leaders to commit to major reductions in greenhouse gas emissions when the climate talks take place in Paris next year.

An article in the New York Times that was also published in the Observer newspaper on Sunday last says that in just 30 years millions of Americans will become climate refugees in their own country. Jennifer A Kingston’s report sets out  how American land and cities will be affected  by rising temperatures,  sparking huge population shifts to newly desirable locations further north like Detroit, the Pacific Northwest and Alaska. See online copy of the article at www.theguardian.com/environment.  Similar population shifts to those expected in the US are also likely to happen in Europe and in other parts of the world.

An EPA lecture to update us on climate change will take place in Dublin on this Monday, 6 October. On the same evening a talk focusing on people’s attitudes to climate change will be held in Trinity College. Here in Monaghan an event to highlight and discuss the issue of climate change will take place in the Hillgrove Hotel on Saturday, 11 October. See Noticeboard above for details of these events and how to book a place.

 Taking an Eco Tour of Ireland

Roz Kelly founder and owner of EcoActiveIreland.com recently decided to embark on an ‘eco tour of Ireland’. Roz says: “Ecotourism and nature related activities account for 20% of global tourism, a figure that is set to grow in the coming years”. She’s been visiting a range of ecotourism attractions and facilities nationwide and meeting the people involved such as at Rock Farm in Slane and The Three Towers Eco House & Organic Kitchen near Slieve Aughty, Co Galway.  Her tour is now near an end and to date she has been cycling, birdwatching, kayaking, surfing, glamping (glamorous camping), staying in an organic farm guesthouse and an ecocabin, experiencing a seaweed bath and visiting a cheesemaker, a natural perfumery and many other interesting places.

Roz is using a sponsored Opel Mokka ecocar for her travels. A bonus has been the fact that the countryside has been looking its best in the recent spell of early autumn sunshine.

The eco tour is being featured on RTE Radio One’s CountryWide programme on Saturday mornings. Roz is also blogging and tweeting about her tour. For more on her eco tour see www.ecoactive.com and Twitter at ‘ecoactiveirl’ and ‘ecoactive Ireland’ on Facebook. For other information on ecotourism see www.discoverireland.ie/Where-To-Stay/Features/Stay-Green and also www.ecotourism.ie.

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