Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/593/7983

From The Socialist newspaper, 15 September 2009

Big business to blame for climate change

Socialist policies needed

Climate change demo December 2007, photo by Paul Mattsson

Climate change demo December 2007, photo by Paul Mattsson

CLIMATE CHANGE is already with us. Temperatures are increasing, polar ice caps melting, glaciers retreating, sea levels rising, biodiversity being lost, food production being threatened, water scarcity spreading. Extreme weather - storms, floods, droughts and heatwaves - is occurring more frequently. It's going to cost a lot of money to put it right - but who's going to pay?

Dave Nellist, Coventry Socialist Party councillor

A new United Nations report says that climate change is "the outcome of a gigantic market failure." But the capitalists, who are responsible for this failure, are trying to avoid paying the true cost of emitting the greenhouse gases and want to make sure that society picks up the bill. For 'society', read ordinary working-class families.

The consensus amongst climate scientists is getting bleaker. 90% of them, in two recent polls, do not believe that the world can reach emissions targets that will keep global warming to an "acceptable" two degrees this century.

That is even though "acceptable" still means millions of people, particularly in poorer countries, falling victim to more violent weather and crop failures such as the looming famine in Ethiopia and the dying livestock in Kenya's drought.

According to Imperial College in London, the additional spending needed to build new flood defences, transport water for agriculture, treat an increase in the range and severity of diseases, and replace buildings and other infrastructure affected by rising temperatures or water levels, could easily reach 200 billion a year or more.

Such costs now don't seem quite so high in the light of the trillions of pounds spent bailing out the banks and the international finance system. Ordinary working people are expected to pay for this through tax rises, benefit cuts, public spending cuts and rising unemployment. Similarly, if the capitalists have their way, they would pass on the cost of rescuing capitalism from climate change.

Left to themselves big industries will always put profits for shareholders above any notion of social responsibility. Privately owned Drax power station in Yorkshire, Europe's largest emitter of global warming gases, will produce electricity in a way that gets the biggest profits for its shareholders.

Danish multinational Vestas Wind Systems closes down the UK's only wind turbine manufacturing plant, destroying 600 jobs, to move elsewhere in the world where profits are greater.

Instead of rationally and rapidly reducing emissions through safe, non-polluting methods, governments want failing market mechanisms such as 'carbon taxes'. These taxes could feature high on this December's UN climate change conference agenda, which is discussing a successor to the (extremely weak) Kyoto treaty.

No major party in Britain stands for renationalisation of energy, or transport, or the public ownership of the resources necessary to construct low carbon producing houses - that party has yet to be built. Without the ability to direct the country's resources and rationally plan how to tackle the urgent problems of climate change, solutions won't materialise.

To fight climate change, the 'gigantic market failure', we need system change!

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.


In The Socialist 15 September 2009:

Big business to blame for climate change


No Job Cuts

No to cuts in jobs and services

Capitalist market prescribes diet of cuts

TUC conference - reactions to Brown's speech

TUC conference: Fightback rally


War and occupation

End the Afghan nightmare now


Socialist Party workplace news

Nationalise Anglesey Aluminium to save jobs

Rover - Gangster capitalists were treated as saviours

London RMT: Discussing an election coalition

Leeds council workers on indefinite strike

National Greed

Construction workers' pay - reject the deal!

The fight against the building blacklist


Socialist Students

Students left penniless

Cardiff: Youth Fight for Jobs

College workers strike against vicious cuts


Vestas

Vestas: the fight is far from over

Coventry Socialist Party councillors show support for Vestas


Socialist Party feature

Interview with POA leader Brian Caton


Socialist Party women

Victory - Decent jobs not exploitation


Socialist Party review

A life of revolution


International socialist news and analysis

Japan: Election ends Liberal Democrats' 54-year reign

Bangladesh: Angry protests at police attacks

Sri Lanka: Defiant Tamil protest


 

Facebook   Twitter



Home   |   The Socialist 15 September 2009   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate   |   Bookshop






Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter



Related links:

Climate change:

triangleProtests against fracking: Stop drill permits!

triangleBeyond the Pale - capitalism and the environment

triangleLlanelli & West Wales Socialist Party: Red to be Green - the socialist solution to climate change

triangleDefend the right to protest

triangleSocialist change to remedy climate change

Big business:

triangleCuts for us, handouts for rich

trianglePride: we need politics, not just a parade

triangleBruised and Blattered - Fifa's boss eventually resigns

triangleState and big business spied on activists

Water:

triangleThem & Us

triangleIreland: crucial stage for water charges

Market:

triangleSocialist plan or capitalist chaos

triangleDerby TUSC meeting: Why you should vote for TUSC

Global warming:

triangleSocialist change to halt climate change

Carbon:

triangleTories and Labour refuse moratorium on fracking

Dave Nellist:

triangle24-hours to go - Help spread the TUSC message

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns

29/7/15

Glasgow

Striking homelessness workers win

29/7/15

Huddersfield

'Prevent'ing terror or preventing opposition?

29/7/15

London underground

Back tube strikes

29/7/15

Austerity

Anti-austerity protests from Northumberland to the 'English Riviera'

29/7/15

Jobs

Coal closure costs 700 jobs

29/7/15

Housing

Workplace news in brief

29/7/15

TUSC

Campaigns news in brief

29/7/15

Austerity

Help fund the party that fights austerity!

29/7/15

Nottingham

Nottingham rehab unit campaign

29/7/15

Workers

The menopause: breaking the taboo

29/7/15

The Socialist

The Socialist summer schedule

29/7/15

Cardiff

Wales: Stop the Bedroom Tax evictions!

28/7/15

Socialist Party

Media coverage of Socialist Party's statement on Corbyn

28/7/15

Metro

Mirror and Metro report view of "exhausted nurse"

23/7/15

Tolpuddle

Determined mood to defend the unions

triangleMore Reports and campaigns articles...

triangle29 Jul Striking homelessness workers win

triangle28 Jul Corbyn's support shows anti-austerity message is popular

triangle27 Jul Blairites' terror at popularity of left-wing ideas

triangle23 Jul Determined mood to defend the unions

triangle23 Jul Anger at the 'Labstainers' - Labour's lack of opposition to attack on...

triangle22 Jul Demo of protest and anger at Suruc attack

Jeremy Corbyn, photo David Hunt, Wikimedia Commons

triangle17 Jul Support for Corbyn's anti-austerity message rattles Labour machine

More ...

triangle30 Jul York Socialist Party: The importance of stalls and canvassing

triangle30 Jul Southwark Socialist Party: London review and perspectives

triangle30 Jul Waltham Forest Socialist Party: Can Jeremy Corbyn change the Labour Party?

triangle30 Jul Huddersfield and Halifax Socialist Party: A display of socialist art

More ...

Share on Facebook
Share on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

Find us on Facebook

Archive

Categories

1-9 

1-9 


Archives:

July 2015

June 2015

May 2015

April 2015

March 2015

February 2015

January 2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999

Legal

SP RSS feed RSS

Platform setting: = No platform choice