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From The Socialist newspaper, 2 December 2015

Paris climate summit falls short in world's hottest year

2015 will be the hottest year on record, according to US government scientists, beating the previous record holder, 2014. But world leaders at the UN conference on climate change in Paris show no signs of tackling impending catastrophe.

The slowdown in the warming of global surface temperatures, much-touted by climate change sceptics, has ended. Each of the past four years has been hotter than the one before. A strong 'El Niño' - warm ocean current - is still intensifying, contributing to the record rise in surface temperatures.

Extreme

As the frequency of extreme weather events intensifies, severe droughts, floods and storms will cause crop failures and food shortages. Low-lying lands will become uninhabitable. The struggle for diminishing resources could result in civil conflicts and even war.

But the giant energy companies' greed for easy, dirty profits from coal, oil and gas is unquenchable.

In 2009 the 'G20' advanced capitalist countries pledged to phase out subsidies for fossil fuel production. In spite of this, the Tory government earlier this year announced a further £1.7 billion in new tax breaks for North Sea oil and gas production.

At the same time Tory chancellor George Osborne announced axing subsidies for renewable energy programmes. In the Autumn Statement, he also slashed £132 million from energy efficiency schemes - on the very day when "excess winter deaths" reached a record high.

Immediate binding international action to curb greenhouse gas emissions is vital to stabilise the climate. But this is unlikely to happen on a capitalist basis, where the cornerstone of a competitive system of production is profit at any cost.

Only democratic socialist planning of industry, based on publicly owned and democratically run economies, can start to mitigate the environmental damage generated by capitalism. To halt climate change, we need system change.

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Coronavirus crisis - Finance appeal

The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

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  • When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
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In The Socialist 2 December 2015:


What we think

Don't bomb Syria! War vote reveals two Labour Parties in one


International socialist news and analysis

Greece - general strike against austerity sees mass protests

Eyewitness to the refugee crisis: a visit to 'The Jungle'

Belgium: ruling class can't be trusted with 'security'

Socialist takes third of vote in Hong Kong election


Socialist Party women

Women: fight for equality, fight for socialism


Socialist history

How the Iron Lady was reduced to iron filings


Socialist Party news and analysis

Action needed to save our NHS

Autumn Statement u-turns: austerity can be defeated

Student nurses must pay to work

Paris climate summit falls short in world's hottest year

London ambulances in special measures due to underfunding

Them & Us


Workplace news and analysis

Junior doctors' strike suspended for talks

JCB redundancies mitigated but fight needed

Open Uni strikers prepared to go the distance

Bus drivers fight bully-boy managers

Water workers protest against pension attacks

Workplace news in brief


Socialist readers' comments and reviews

Film review - The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 2

A socialist Christmas gift guide

Letters


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Christmas 'collectathon': 8 to 17 December

Workers snap up the Socialist!

Protesters demand system change not climate change

Demonstration against the war

FBU fights the cuts in Yorkshire


 

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Related links:

Climate change:

triangleLeeds Socialist Party: After Starmer's victory - how to continue the struggle for socialism

triangleHackney & Islington Socialist Party: How can climate change be stopped?

triangleBezos gives $10bn for climate - nationalise the rest!

triangleCaerphilly Socialist Party: Cuts and climate change cause floods

triangleCuts and climate change cause floods

Gas:

triangleNewham gas workers' strike threat

triangleNewham gas workers to strike

triangleBritish Gas workers need rank-and-file leadership

triangleRonan Point disaster 50 years on

Energy:

triangleEDF Energy workers furloughed on 100% pay

triangleBristol North Socialist Party: Renewable Energy - a just transition

triangleJohnson emits huge quantities of hot air!

Oil:

triangleLibya: Civil war and chaos follow interventions by world and regional powers

triangleShell pays £0 corporation tax, and plans huge hike in fossil output

Profit:

trianglePandemic shortages caused by capitalist market - socialist planning is the alternative

Planning:

triangleCoronavirus: socialist planning, not capitalist chaos!

G20:

triangleG20 betrays refugees created by its own policies

Capitalism:

triangleThe Jungle: capitalism's remorseless attack on workers' safety and conditions

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