I’m on my way to a “Transformation in a Changing Climate” Conference, jointly run by Oslo University and the Stockholm Resilience Centre – a great honour. A 7 hour transit in Kuala Lumpur airport has been long enough to sort out my computer and electronic challenges. So, after a frantic lead-up to my departure, with family sorry business around the death of my mother on 8th May and a last ditch effort to get my paper finished, I’m tackling my first blog.
En route to Oslo, I’ve pondered how much and how little has changed since I went to the Copenhagen climate talks as a community representative in 2009.
Despite much rhetoric about action on climate change, it appears to be “business as usual” across most of Australia, with real transformation slow to eventuate.
The recent Cherryville bushfire, only 7km from our house in the Adelaide Hills, was both too close for comfort and close enough to focus the mind. Flying first across Australia’s vast inland then over the wide blue ocean where cloud formations mirror the occasional islands below, made me once again think that our species interferes with the balance between “heaven and earth” at our own peril. Given growing evidence that the earth’s carbon sinks are losing efficiency, clearly we humans need to reduce our greenhouse emissions and radically change our treatment of natural ecosystems to maintain and improve their ability to buffer the system.