What an intense week it has been! The publication of the IPCC report has prompted some in the media to understand what we have been saying for a long time: that we face an existential climate emergency, and only a WWII-scale climate mobilization can protect humanity and the natural world.
In a nation-wide first, the Portland Press Herald editorial board called for this IPCC report to be our “Pearl Harbor Moment” and called on the country to initiate a WWII-scale mobilization:
This is not a hoax. It is not a theory. It is not a natural cycle of warming and cooling. It is a man-made catastrophe that demands a national effort unlike anything this country has seen since World War II.
The Guardian editorial board called climate a “global emergency” and an “existential threat to the human race.”
In an incredibly exhilarating video interview with The Young Turks, Alexandria Ocasio Cortez shared her plans of prioritizing the pursuit of emergency climate mobilization in Congress:
And so for me this is an existential issue. We need wartime mobilization around climate change, and that level of economic mobilization is gonna be required. And, the same way that we have an urgency, where we mobilize entire economies around existential war crises or threats, I don’t see any larger threat to our existence than climate change, and it’s going to take a really full economic mobilization in order for us to address it…. For me I think that it deserves all of the resources possible that we have. When we think about what government is useful for, it should be used to improve the lives of everyday people and I really don’t think that there is a price tag on our survival when it comes to global warming and climate change.
Finally, David Wallace Wells said this in NYMagazine:
Other activists often see one precedent, in all of human history, citing the model of how the United States prepared for World War II, and calling for a global mobilization of that kind — all of the world’s rivalrous societies and nationalistic governments and self-interested industries organized around the common pursuit of a stable and comfortable climate as though warming was an existential threat.
It is. And the World War II mobilization metaphor is not hyperbole. To avoid warming of the kind the IPCC now calls catastrophic requires a complete rebuilding of the entire energy infrastructure of the world, a thorough reworking of agricultural practices and diet to entirely eliminate carbon emissions from farming, and a battery of cultural changes to the way those of us in the wealthy West, at least, conduct our lives.
The media, and the public, are starting to wake up. We have incredible momentum. We need a full-court press in order to wake up America. But will it be fast enough? It can happen only if we, people who understand climate truth, spread the word and build power for mobilization. Post this blog post to your social media. Send this to 5 friends and ask them to get involved!