Archive for 7 dicembre 2019

Thousands of workers march in France

dicembre 7, 2019

06.12.2019 – Paris, France – Countercurrents

Thousands of workers march in France

By Countercurrents Collective

A countrywide union strike against pension reform has brought transportation across France to a standstill. Thousands of workers marched in what has been described as the largest protest of its kind since 1995. The protest dwarfed the weekly Yellow Vests demonstrations that have been happening every Saturday for over a year now.

The massive worker walkouts and marches were called in the hope of forcing President Emmanuel Macron to abandon his plans to overhaul France’s pension system.

Police, lawyers, hospital and airport staff, and other professions for the general walkout joined teachers and transport workers.

In Paris, 11 of the city’s 16 metro lines were shuttered and schools in the capital and across the country closed down.

The strike, which is expected to continue until Monday, also paralyzed 90 percent of the country’s trains, and forced Air France to cancel 30 percent of its domestic flights.

1.5 million people join protests

The interior ministry said: More than 800,000 people had joined demonstrations in more than 100 cities across France.

The CGT union said: 1.5m people had turned out, including 250,000 in Paris.

Photographs of Thursday’s demonstrations show public workers carrying banners and flares as they march through France’s largest cities.

Riot police mobilized

In Paris, 6,000 riot police were mobilized as the capital braced for street protests.

Oil refineries blocked

The CGT also said workers had blocked seven of the country’s eight oil refineries, potentially causing fuel shortages if the strike continues.

Eiffel Tower did not open

The strike also forced France’s most iconic tourist spots to shut their doors. The Eiffel Tower and the Orsay museum did not open on Thursday due to staff shortages, while the Louvre, the Pompidou Centre and other museums said some of its exhibits would not be available for viewing. The Palace of Versailles was also shut for the day.

Yellow Vest

According to local media, Yellow Vest protesters were blocking fuel depots in the Var department in the south and near the city of Orleans.

Petrol stations out of fuel

As a result, on Thursday over 200 petrol stations had totally run out of fuel while over 400 were almost out of stock. The group has been demonstrating against Macron’s austerity measures for over a year.

Experts say that the strike, described as the largest of its kind in decades, could spell trouble for Macron. Building on ongoing demonstrations by the Yellow Vests, the strike could paralyze France and force Macron to rethink his planned reforms.

Demonstrators and police clash

Riot police and demonstrators have clashed in some cities amid the ongoing general strike by labor unions against proposed pension reforms.

Dozens arrested

Dozens have been arrested in Paris alone as over a million people marched across the country.

One report said: Police in Paris had arrested 71 people, officials said.

Footage from Paris shows protesters hurling objects at police, and riot-geared officers charging in response.

Stun grenades

As flares light up the night, stun grenades can be heard exploding. There is also what appears to be tear gas.

Sporadic violence

Reports from across France during the day spoke of sporadic violence on the sidelines of the protests, including the smashing of shop windows and security cameras and setting fire to bicycles and effigies. Demonstrators blocked buses in Marseille.

Police fired tear gas in Nantes

Violence was reported in Nantes, Bordeaux and Rennes.

Police have fired tear gas at protesters in Nantes participating in a nationwide strike, according to local media.

Videos taken at the scene show demonstrators fleeing as large tear gas clouds obstruct the marchers’ path.

In one clip, shots can be heard coming from the police as demonstrators chant and jeer.

French BFM TV also reports that tear gas has been used to quell the rally.

Largest strike in years

BBC report headlined “Macron pension reform: France paralyzed by biggest strike in years” said:

France’s largest nationwide strike in years has severely disrupted schools and transport.

“What we’ve got to do is shut the economy down,” said union official Christian Grolier of the Force Ouvrière (Workers’ Force). “People are spoiling for a fight.”


The BBC report told about the extent of affect of the strike on transport. It said:

  • Some 90% of high-speed TGV and inter-city trains were cancelled
  • In Paris, just five of the city’s 16 metro lines were running
  • Train operators Eurostar and Thalys cancelled at least half their services linking Paris with London and Brussels. Eurostar will operate a reduced timetable until December 10
  • Hundreds of flights were cancelled
  • Air France cancelled 30% of internal flights and 10% of short-haul international flights amid walkouts by air traffic controllers
  • Low-cost carrier EasyJet cancelled 223 domestic and short-haul international flights, and warned passengers to expect delays.

Sabotage by Extinction Rebellion

The Extinction Rebellion group said it had sabotaged thousands of e-scooters by painting over the QR codes that smartphone users scan to unlock the vehicles.

The group said this was because e-scooters – despite being widely viewed as an ecologically-friendly form of transport – actually required large quantities of energy and resources during their manufacture and had short life cycles.

How do French workers view the reforms?

The BBC report said:

Train driver Cyril Romero from Toulouse told France Info he would reconsider his job if the reforms went through.

“I started in 2001 with a contract that allowed me to leave at 50. But like everyone else, I got the reforms which pushed back my early retirement age to 52-and-a-half and then, in reality, 57-and-a-half for full pension. Now they want to make us work even longer.”

An unnamed history teacher, writing in HuffPost, was planning to strike on Friday as well as Thursday.

“For me, the pension reforms are one punch too many. We’re fighting not to lose hundreds of Euros of pension a month – after more than 40 years in a job.

“How can you even think of ending your career in front of pupils beyond the age of 70, in worsening conditions and on what for many of us is just a minimum wage?”

How much support is there for the strike?

The report said:

Some trade union leaders have vowed to strike until Macron abandons his campaign promise to overhaul the retirement system.

One opinion poll put public support for the strikes at 69%, with backing strongest among 18- to 34 year olds.

Single, points-based pension system

Macron has proposed making a single, points-based pension system, which he said would be fairer to workers while also saving the state money. The planned scheme would replace current system, which has 42 different pension schemes across its private and public sectors, with variations in retirement age and benefits.

The official retirement age in France has been raised in the last decade from 60 to 62, but remains one of the lowest among the OECD group of rich nations – in the UK, for example, the retirement age for state pensions is 66 and is due to rise to at least 67.

The move would remove the most advantageous pensions for a number of jobs ranging from sailors to lawyers and even opera workers.

Meanwhile, those retiring before 64 would receive a lower pension. For example, someone retiring at 63 would receive 5% less, so unions fear it will mean having to work longer for a lower pension.

Labor unions oppose the move, arguing that the changes would require millions of people to work beyond the legal retirement age of 62 in order to receive their full pension.

The unrest could signal dark days ahead for Emmanuel Macron’s pro-austerity government.

However, farmers, whose pensions are among the lowest in the country, are not taking part.

Since coming to power, Macron has pushed through other reforms including relaxing labor laws and cutting taxes for businesses.

Mezzo milione di persone in marcia per la giustizia climatica: i politici siano all’altezza dell’emergenza globale

dicembre 7, 2019

07.12.2019 – Madrid – WILPF (Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom)

Mezzo milione di persone in marcia per la giustizia climatica: i politici siano all’altezza dell’emergenza globale
(Foto di Giovanna Pagani)

6 Dicembre, Madrid.Nel giorno della Costituzione, festa nazionale in Spagna,  mezzo milione di persone hanno sfilato chiedendo GIUSTIZIA CLIMATICA, criticando l’inadeguatezza dei politici di fronte all’emergenza globale.

Il corteo che si era dato appuntamento al Museo del Prado alle ore 18, ha raggiunto  alle ore 20  Nuevos Ministerios, per avvicinarsi simbolicamente alla zona della Feria de Madrid, dove si tiene il vertice dell’Onu sul Clima.  La Marcia si è chiusa con la lettura del  Manifesto  “Il mondo si è svegliato di fronte all’emergenza climatica”.

L’attore  Javier Bardem, durante la lettura del Manifesto, a titolo personale ha definito  “molto stupidi” sia  Il presidente USA Trump -per essersi ritirato dagli Accordi di Parigi – sia il Sindaco  di Madrid che consente ai veicoli contaminanti di circolare in città. Due esempi di politici non all’altezza del momento storico.

E’ seguito l’intervento di Greta Thumberg che in mattinata aveva partecipato alla manifestazione dei FFF nell’area Blu della COP25. Greta continua a definirsi un piccolo pezzo di un grande movimiento, ad accusare il “tradimento” dei politici e ad annunciare un cambiamento in corso inarrestabile.

In contemporanea,  altre manifestazioni in altre capitali del mondo. Tra queste Santiago de Cile arrivata al 50esimo giorno di mobilitazione popolare in nome della “giustizia sociale”  oltre che  climatica. La Corte Interamericana per i Diritti Umani ha nuevamente condannato il Governo cileno per l’uso della repressione e si e’ dichiarata preoccupata per il crescente numero di denunce. La gente protesta  per la  selvaggia política di  privatizzazioni (acqua, salute, educazione) che continua ad arricchire le imprese private e a impoverire il popolo sempre più deprivato dei  suoi legittimi diritti.   Il governo non ascolta, non dialoga e continua  con la dura repressione dei carabineros.

A Madrid, insieme ai numerosi attivisti di ONG e associazioni ecologiste ed ambientaliste di tutto il mondo, arrivati   per la COP25:  insegnanti, sindacalisti, famiglie coi loro bambini al grido “curiamo il pianeta, altrimenti moriamo”. Tanti, tantissimi giovani. E poi tante Femministe appassionate e creative nell’esprimere la loro volontà di contribuire alla giustizia climatica nel pieno rispetto dei diritti umani e dei popoli. Assieme ad altri slogan, ripetuttamente cantato  l’inno delle femministe cilene  che accusa lo Stato che reprime :  “El estado opresor es un macho violador”.

Ben rappresentati nella Marcia pure i  Popoli indigeni coi i loro coloratissimi costumi. Auspichiamo che lo loro ancestrale saggezza – collegata a una visione del mondo in  l’essere umano è  una parte della “ comunità dei viventi” asieme agli animali e alle piante –  sappia farci sentire (così come loro lo sentono) il grido di dolore della nostra  “madre terra” troppo a lungo violentata da un modelo di sviluppo militarizzato e predatorio.

L’Agenda 2030 0nu per lo Sviluppo Sostenibile dipende per i 2/3 dal raggiungimento degli obiettivi climatico-ambientali e tra questi c’è la Pace.

Giovanna Pagani WILPF Italia

COP25: Alternative Climate Summit Honors Those “Suffering the Crimes of Transnational Corporations”

dicembre 7, 2019

07.12.2019 – Madrid, Spain – Democracy Now!

COP25: Alternative Climate Summit Honors Those “Suffering the Crimes of Transnational Corporations”
(Image by Democrarcy Now)

We broadcast from Madrid, Spain, where the United Nations Climate Change Conference, known as COP25, began Monday and will continue through next week, as environmental leaders from around the world gather to negotiate global solutions to the climate crisis. Activists have converged on Madrid for the conference and are hosting an alternative summit of their own: Cumbre Social por el Clima — the Social Summit for the Climate. The alternative summit has been organized by social justice and environmental groups to draw attention to the ongoing political repression in Chile, corporate influence on the climate summit, Spain’s own failure to address the climate crisis and the Eurocentrism of the climate conference. This is the third year in a row that the conference is being held in Europe. We speak with Tom Kucharz, one of the organizers of the alternative climate conference. He is a journalist and activist with the group Ecologists in Action.

AMY GOODMAN: This is Democracy Now!, The War and Peace Report. I’m Amy Goodman. We are broadcasting from Madrid, Spain, where the United Nations Climate Change Conference, known as COP25, began Monday and will continue through next week as environmental leaders from around the world gather to negotiate global solutions to the climate crisis. The summit was supposed to be held in Santiago, Chile, but the country’s right-wing president Sebastián Piñera canceled the summit just over a month ago amid massive protests against economic inequality and austerity. Spain’s president Pedro Sánchez then offered to host the summit.

Activists have converged in Madrid for the summit and are hosting an alternative summit of their own, Cumbre Social por el Clima, the Social Summit for the Climate. The alternative summit has been organized by social justice and environmental groups to draw attention to the ongoing political repression in Chile, corporate influence on the climate summit, Spain’s own failure to address the climate crisis and the Eurocentrism of the climate conference, which is being held in Europe for the third year in a row.

The alternative summit begins Saturday morning—that’s tomorrow—at the University of Madrid and will kick off tonight with a climate march through the city center. We are broadcasting from the convergence space that activists are using as a hub for their organizing. It’s a union hall and former monastery that today is covered in colorful protest art and bustling with organizers that have pulled the alternative summit together with only a few months notice.

So we are right here in the Cumbre Social, in the Social Summit for the Climate, with one of the organizers, Tom Kucharz. He is a journalist and activist with Ecologists in Action.
It is great to be with you. Welcome to Democracy Now! Tom, as we sit here, this place is surrounded by posters. Maybe we could do a broad view of the walls. It says “Plaza de los Pueblos”—the Plaza of the People. “Salvemos la Tierra”—Save the Earth—as well. “Let’s Decolonize.”

TOM KUCHARZ: That is a very important issue. We have a huge historic debt with millions of people who were slaved from Africa to America and never have been justice about that. So the issue of antiracism and anticolonialism is very important for the march also today at six in the afternoon. So hopefully, thousand of people will gathering in this very important march.

AMY GOODMAN: Tell us about this place that we are in. It is a former monastery?

TOM KUCHARZ: Yes, it was built more than 400 years ago, but it was a trade unions building since the ’80s. Fortunately, the trade unions, UGT, said we can have it for two weeks to make gatherings, assemblies and prepare the march and actions of the different groups who are involved in the preparation of the activities these two weeks, like Fridays for Future, Extinction Rebellion and many environmental and human rights groups, trade unionists and many international solidarity groups also fighting all around the world for justice, both environmental and social justice.

AMY GOODMAN: Tell us about this Social Summit for the Climate, where it will be held, from the university to here to where else? And talk about the 850 groups who organized this space in a very short period of time, since you guys just got the summit a few months ago.

TOM KUCHARZ: Actually, the social summit was organized in less than four weeks. First of all, it is a solidarity action with the people in Chile, with all of the people in the world who are suffering crimes against humanity, who are suffering repression, who are suffering the crimes of transnational corporation and corrupt states, who are only doing business and doing politics in favor of a very small minority, which are the big businesses, who are also gathering here in the official climate summit. So it’s a complete unjust world. We have heard that in your news at the beginning.

And also in Spain, we have a huge situation of injustice, unemployment. So for us, the issues of social injustice, the problem of corruption, the problem of huge economic and social and environmental crisis all over the world brings us together. Social movements, trade unions, environmental groups, but also social justice groups from all over the world.

And it’s first of all a denouncement also of the repression of the right-wing government of Chile against the people in Chile. And that is very important for us. We are very connected with the movement in Santiago de Chile. And today, the march actually will be at the same time as the march in Santiago de Chile. We will be marching together. And we are connecting also with the organizers of the civil society space held at the same time in Santiago de Chile, also criticizing the farce and the theater is done in the official summit because they are not the solution to the huge climate emergency. We, the people, are the solution.

AMY GOODMAN: Talk about how Spain ended up getting the U.N. Climate Summit. Originally it was Brazil and the far-right president, when he was elected, one of his first actions in office, canceled the COP. Then Chile took it. Then because of those protests, the right-wing president there canceled it. And President Sánchez of Spain picked this up very quickly. Talk about the significance for him, and now the right-wing government that runs Madrid, what it means for them, who actually campaigned against climate regulations, its major campaign focus in the last weeks.

TOM KUCHARZ: Exactly. We should know that Spain is one of the European countries which is most responsible for the increase of greenhouse gas emissions over the past decades. So Spain has a huge ecological and historical debt with the Global South, completely dependent on imports of fossil fuels. And the big transnational corporation from Spain are committing crimes and human rights violation all the time and are very responsible for the natural destructions all over the world. So Spain is very responsible for the climate emergency.

And we have had social democratic governments and conservative right-wing governments who are very irresponsible. They were not caring sufficiently about the climate emergency. And even if they bring the official climate summit from the U.N. here to Madrid, it was a kind of political shift to help them to get some votes towards the last elections we had very recently on the 10th of November. Actually, the Spanish social democratic governments have shown in the last year that they were not increasing their willingness to fight climate emergency. They are not really willing to change the economic and also energy policy in Spain, and that needs also a completely shift, a paradigm shift of the development model in Europe, which is completely irresponsible and a root cause of the climate emergency all over the world.

That is why we are feeling that it’s a greenwashing both of the national very gray and dark fossil fuel policies of the Spanish government. It’s a greenwashing of the right-wing government in Madrid. Because only some months ago, this Madrid major from the right-wing party who was denying climate change, who was saying he will eliminate all the environmental policies which the municipal left-wing government put in place only some months ago, like a low-emission scheme to try to stop entering many cars into the Madrid center.

We should know that Spain is one of the most polluting countries also in the world. We have nearly 40,000 people who are dying, so we have premature deaths, 40,000 a year. That means in Madrid, it’s about more than 3,000 people dying prematurely because of the air contamination. And that is mostly because of this huge traffic. So we have unsustainable transport system.

AMY GOODMAN: So you have the previous mayor, Manuela Carmena, a socialist mayor, who pushed for the Madrid Central, this low-emission zone—


AMY GOODMAN: —so you don’t have this mass traffic jam all day—

TOM KUCHARZ: We still have them, unfortunately.

AMY GOODMAN: —as much. And then you have the new mayor, Almeida—


AMY GOODMAN: —who actually made his total campaign about getting rid of these restrictions.

TOM KUCHARZ: Exactly. And just before the climate summit, he says that is the best thing he have ever done. So now he is trying to greenwash completely his very unresponsible campaign he did. And actually the popular party is very responsible to filling the most polluting companies in Spain with public money. That is why Spain gives hundreds and thousands of millions of euros to the energy companies, to the oil companies, to the gas companies over the last years. That is why we have a real problem that it’s very difficult to get out of this fossil feel industry right now.

AMY GOODMAN: So you stopped—Ecologists in Action, your group, stopped the mayor from getting rid of the low-emission zone?

TOM KUCHARZ: Not alone. We have a very interesting platform created of many people here in the city center. So there are dozens of organizations involved in the platform to defend Madrid Central. And it was collective work, and tens of thousands of people poured into the streets in summer just after the local elections to ask to not eliminate Madrid Central, this low-emission scheme.

And that is very linked to fight for climate justice not only in Spain but over the whole world. That is why those people who are fighting to get Madrid rid of car traffic and air contamination is also fighting together with many people in the world against air contamination, but the whole silly system of putting public money into the car industry and the oil industry which then are also very responsible for the mining and human rights violation all over the world. We have that in Middle East and also Latin America.

AMY GOODMAN: Talk about nationally. We have just arrived in Madrid from Stockholm. The prime minister won a snap election recently, Pedro Sánchez. He is in the midst of negotiating with Podemos.

TOM KUCHARZ: Unidos Podemos, yeah, which—it’s currently [inaudible] Podemos Together.

AMY GOODMAN: But talk about the role and the increasing power of the extreme-right group Vox and how that plays in here, whether we are talking about the environment or gender violence.

TOM KUCHARZ: The extreme-right party is coming out actually on the split of the right-wing scheme which was the Popular Party. Because there’s a huge problem of impunity in Spain, so the crimes against humanity committed by Spanish fascism of the Franco dictatorship was never been judged, and we have still hundreds of thousand of people in graves all over Spain and people are looking for the bodies of their families. So that is a very anxious system. And still from this we have a very fascist legacy in the judicial system, in the political system.

But because of the corruption scandals, because [inaudible] Popular Party of Spain is one of the most corrupted party in the world, the right-wing political party split it up to neoliberal Ciudadanos, to Vox, the extreme right, and still the PP is the Popular Party. So there is also a growing vaulting towards this extreme-right party, which is very dangerous and very similar to things happening with Trump in the U.S., with Salvini in Italy, or Le Pen in France, or Alternative für Deutschland in Germany.

So it is very dangerous because it’s giving oxygen to the right-wing groups, trying to make attacks on migrants, on refugees, and maybe there is a new fear towards these very extreme fascist groups to make attacks against migrants like we had this attack with a bomb this week.

AMY GOODMAN: A grenade was just thrown into a residential center of mainly unaccompanied minors, refugees from other countries, and also orphans here in Spain.

TOM KUCHARZ: In Madrid, yeah. That is an attack which we can explain that there is a growing institutional racism which is legitimized both by the right-wing Popular Party and the social democrats, because unfortunately the social democratic government is talking about human rights in the official climate summit, but at the end, they are responsible for migration policies which brings the deaths of thousand of people in the Mediterranean Sea. You just mentioned the example in Mauritania, migrants and refugees trying to get to the Canary Islands.

AMY GOODMAN: Sixty-two people dying yesterday.

TOM KUCHARZ: Exactly. And that is happening all the time.

AMY GOODMAN: As they tried to make it to what is Spain’s Canary Islands.

TOM KUCHARZ: To Spain, exactly. But this is happening all the time because the Spanish government, together with the European Union, are pulling hundreds of millions of public money to finance the militaries and the police in Morocco, in Libya and also Turkey to stop refugees and migrants getting to Europe, and then they are responsible for these very criminal policies which makes people dying all the time in the Mediterranean Sea. That’s why we are talking about one of the biggest mass graves in the world. So very similar to the very criminal migration policies of Trump in the Mexican border.

AMY GOODMAN: Tom, very quickly, we only have about 30 seconds, but we started by you talking about decolonization and how that relates to climate. I’m sitting in front of a big sign that you have here at the Cumbra, at this Social Summit for the Climate, that says “Let’s decolonize.” Explain that more fully.

TOM KUCHARZ: “Let’s decolonize” means there is a deep, historic impunity of the crimes committed by Europe in colonial time, both with the slave trade, but also with the assassination of millions of indigenous people in America. And these historical crimes against humanity was never been judged. And this is still impugn and we will not accept it. That’s why for us it is so important that indigenous people, migrant and refugees are on the forefront of the demonstration today at six. But those indigenous communities and the frontline communities all over the world are also fighting against fossil fuels, megaproject, of these same Spanish and European transnational corporation who are financing the official climate summit. So this is completely injust policies. And unfortunately, the European Union and the Spanish social democratic government are very responsible for those very unjust situations.

AMY GOODMAN: Tom Kucharz, journalist, activist with Ecologists in Action, one of the leading environmental groups organizing the alternative climate summit, thank you so much for welcoming us into your space, rapidly put together in the last few weeks since Spain took on the U.N. Climate Summit. When we come back, we will be joined by two Fridays for Future youth activists from Chile and Uganda who are here in Madrid for the U.N. summit. They will join activists from around the world today in the climate march. Stay with us.

10 punti fermi dagli scienziati sul clima

dicembre 7, 2019

06.12.2019 – Giornalisti Nell’Erba

10 punti fermi dagli scienziati sul clima

 Clima: nel rapporto “10 New Insights in Climate Science 2019”, presentato oggi a COP25 e consegnato alla segretaria esecutiva dell’UNFCCC Patricia Espinosa, si legge chiaramente, al primo punto, che il cambiamento climatico è più veloce e potente di quanto avessimo mai previsto: “Il ritmo dell’aumento contemporaneo delle concentrazioni di gas a effetto serra non ha precedenti nella storia del clima negli ultimi 66 milioni di anni e le concentrazioni di metano sono ora a un livello record del 257% dei livelli preindustriali. Un aumento della temperatura globale di 1,5 ° C al di sopra dei livelli preindustriali potrebbe essere raggiunto già nel 2030, anziché nel 2040 come è la proiezione media dell’IPCC”.

Il report- non certo l’unico proveniente dal mondo della ricerca presentato alla conferenza ONU sul clima – è in 10 punti chiave.

Secondo punto: non andiamo per niente bene. “Nonostante i fattori trainanti della riduzione delle emissioni, come la crescita dell’energia verde, le istituzioni che disinvestono dai combustibili fossili e alcuni paesi che eliminano gradualmente il carbone, l’industria fossile è ancora in crescita e i leader globali non si stanno ancora impegnando per i necessari tagli alle emissioni. Non siamo sulla buona strada per raggiungere l’accordo di Parigi”.

Terzo risultato del reporttutte le montagne saranno devastate con danni per tutto il pianeta. “Le montagne sono in prima linea per l’impatto dei cambiamenti climatici. I ghiacciai, la neve, il ghiaccio e il permafrost stanno diminuendo, il che influenzerà la disponibilità di acqua e aumenterà i pericoli naturali come frane e cascate, che potenzialmente colpiscono più di un miliardo di persone in tutto il mondo. Il cambiamento climatico influenzerà anche in modo irreversibile gli ecosistemi montani e la loro biodiversità, riducendo l’area dei punti di crisi della biodiversità, facendo estinguere le specie e compromettendo la capacità delle montagne di fornire servizi ecosistemici chiave. Dobbiamo riconoscere che la conoscenza locale e indigena nelle regioni montane svolge un ruolo chiave nella loro conservazione e gestione”.

Anche le foreste sono minacciate, con conseguenze globali. “Le foreste del mondo sono un importante pozzo di anidride carbonica, assorbendo circa un terzo delle emissioni antropogeniche di anidride carbonica. Gli incendi boschivi causati dall’uomo però hanno ridotto questi pozzi e il cambiamento climatico amplifica globalmente gli incendi boschivi selvatici. L’aumento degli incendi è stato osservato negli Stati Uniti occidentali e in Alaska, Canada, Russia e Australia a causa della prolungata siccità. Enormi emissioni sono state registrate dai cambiamenti nel terreno dell’Etiopia occidentale e dell’Africa tropicale occidentale. La perdita di foreste influenza sia il clima locale che quello globale. Combattere la deforestazione e incoraggiare la riforestazione, insieme alla gestione sostenibile delle foreste e altre soluzioni climatiche naturali, sono opzioni importanti per ridurre le emissioni nette”.

Le condizioni meteorologiche estreme sono la “nuova normalità” nel 2019”, scrivono i ricercatori.  Il cambiamento climatico ci sta costringendo a riconsiderare l’idea che abbiamo di un evento estremo. Ciò che una volta era considerato improbabile o raro – sia in termini di intensità che di frequenza – sta diventando parte di una “nuova normalità”. Gli eventi meteorologici e climatici estremi da record hanno continuato a dominare i titoli nel 2019, con l’impatto di eventi che vanno al di là della semplice registrazione e del danno ambientale: i costi materiali e umani sono particolarmente elevati. Sempre più le società dovranno adattarsi  ad eventi “composti”, che possono amplificare in modo significativo il rischio di gravi impatti, e ad eventi “a cascata”, che non lasciano abbastanza tempo alle società di riprendersi prima che ne arrivi un altro. Gli estremi persistenti delle piogge e le ondate di calore, i modelli meteorologici insoliti dovuti al mutamento del flusso di correnti nell’emisfero settentrionale, così come i mari più caldi e più alti, influenzeranno tutte le regioni del mondo in modi diversi. Una mitigazione ambiziosa può contenere i rischi se manteniamo il riscaldamento a 1,5 ° C, ma a livello regionale verranno comunque raggiunti livelli pericolosi”.

Altra questione, la biodiversità: “la custode della resilienza della terra è minacciata”. “La biodiversità sulla terra, le barriere coralline e le popolazioni ittiche vedranno perdite tra il 14 e il 99 % a un riscaldamento da 1 a 2 ° C”, figuriamoci cosa potrebbe accadere se andassimo oltre. Inoltre, “la biodiversità è una caratteristica chiave degli ecosistemi stabili, fornendo – tra molti altri servizi all’umanità – riserve e pozzi di carbonio e proteggendo in tal modo la resilienza del sistema terrestre contro l’interruzione delle emissioni antropogeniche di carbonio. Pertanto, è urgente fermare il degrado degli ecosistemi”, continuano i ricercatori.

I cambiamenti climatici minacciano la sicurezza alimentare e la salute di centinaia di milioni di persone. “La denutrizione sarà il maggior rischio per la salute a causa dei cambiamenti climatici con il calo della produttività agricola, in particolare nelle zone aride dell’Africa e delle regioni montuose dell’Asia e del Sud America. Inoltre, l’aumento delle concentrazioni di anidride carbonica ridurrà la qualità nutrizionale della maggior parte delle colture di cereali. I cambiamenti climatici stanno già influenzando la produzione alimentare riducendo i raccolti agricoli, in particolare ai tropici, e aumenteranno perdite e danni in tutto il sistema alimentare. Gli stock ittici globali sono destinati a ridursi ulteriormente con il cambiamento climatico ed è un’ulteriore pressione sulle scorte già in calo di pesci e molluschi, importanti fonti di proteine ​​e sostanze nutritive umane”.

I più poveri e vulnerabili saranno anche i più colpiti dai cambiamenti climatici. “La mancata risposta e relativo mancato adattamento ai cambiamenti climatici avranno conseguenze disastrose per centinaia di milioni di persone, principalmente le più povere, e ostacoleranno lo sviluppo nei paesi in via di sviluppo. Mentre tutti noi saremo colpiti dai cambiamenti climatici, i poveri sono più vulnerabili alla siccità, alluvioni, alte temperature e altri disastri naturali, anche per la loro scarsa capacità di adattamento. Con l’aumentare della frequenza dei pericoli naturali e climatici, sfuggire alla povertà sarà particolarmente difficile”.

Equità e uguaglianza sono fondamentali per mitigare e adattare con successo i cambiamenti climatici. “La giustizia sociale è un fattore importante per la resilienza della società di fronte ai cambiamenti climatici, vitale per la cooperazione sia locale che globale per facilitare la mitigazione e l’adattamento. L’elevata disuguaglianza è stata identificata come un fattore che contribuisce al disastro: l’esaurimento delle risorse ha spinto le civiltà a collassare in passato e minaccia la capacità della nostra attuale civiltà di sopravvivere ai cambiamenti climatici e ad altri cambiamenti ambientali. Il successo della politica climatica dipende anche dall’accettazione sociale, dalla giustizia, dalla correttezza e da un’equa distribuzione dei costi. Si tratta di fattori importanti per il sostegno pubblico alla politica e per evitare pericolosi sentimenti nazionalisti. Potrebbe essere giunto il momento per i punti di svolta sociale sull’azione per il clima”.

I sondaggi dell’opinione pubblica indicano che un numero crescente di cittadini in vari paesi è seriamente preoccupato per i cambiamenti climatici e che le recenti massicce proteste civili si stanno avvicinando alle soglie in cui ci si potrebbe aspettare il “ribaltamento” di alcuni sistemi socioeconomici. Tuttavia, le misure politiche devono accompagnare il cambiamento comportamentale e per soddisfare l’accordo di Parigi sono necessarie trasformazioni profonde e di lungo periodo guidate da una grande varietà di attori”.

A proposito di sondaggi, anche gli italiani sono preoccupati. L’89% degli intervistati del sondaggio del XVII Rapporto “Gli Italiani, il solare e la green economy” fatto da Noto Sondaggi per Fondazione UniVerde, è preoccupato dai cambiamenti climatici, il 79% è convinto che si sta facendo poco per contenere l’aumento delle temperature entro i 2 gradi e solo il 2% crede nell’azione del Governo. Inoltre per il 34% degli italiani a mettere in campo azioni sono associazioni e società civile, seguono scienziati (25%), Università e scuole (8%). Per fermare il cambiamento climatico, la convinzione è che si stia facendo di più nel settore del riuso e riciclo dei materiali (27%) e nella produzione di energia da fonti rinnovabili (24%).

Il nostro primo ministro dice che il governo è in azione: “L’Italia c’è, nella sfida ai cambiamenti climatici”, dichiara Giuseppe Conte: “Noi lavoriamo innanzitutto per rispettare i parametri di riduzione della Co2 così come indicato dall’Accordo di Parigi e per raggiungere gli obiettivi posti dall’Agenda 2030 sullo sviluppo sostenibile delle Nazioni Unite”, dice. Si tratta di “una sensibilità declinata molto puntualmente e in modo molto prospettico nel programma di governo. Va arricchita di contenuti”. Appunto. E di incisività, aggiungiamo noi.

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