torsdag, juli 28, 2005

Filthy Polluter's Pact / Bush' utsläppspakt

George W Bush has launched a new "Climate Pact" in order to save American Big Business from the restrictions in emissions of greenhouse gases in the Kyoto Protocol. He has succeeded in getting the big industrial countries in east Asia on board, as well as the ultra-conservative Australian government.

Some media has made humble comments on this pact being about "sustainable development", instead of saying the naked truth that this pact does not include any restrictions on carbon dioxide emissions. The pact is launched as a bad argument for Bush to avoid doing anything to force the American industry to cut back on CO2 emissions.

Anyone who has taken a glimpse on Mark Lynas' book High Tide – News from a warming world (Oväder på svenska) knows that the climate threat is a reality. This issue - to understand that the most crucial question for a socialist in our time is our very survival on this small planet - is something that the Norwegian Labour Youth (AUF) has a very strong tradition on working with. Swedish social democracy was much better on working with this in the 1980's when Anna Lindh was chair of the SSU and really pushed the issues in the public debate, and when issues like unemployment and the welfare state's survival luckily wasn't that alarming.

The climate issue is a big divider in international politics. The UK government is considering ration cards on CO2, while Bush is doing filthy polluter's pacts. The Swedish government has good policies, but the public debate on the issue in Sweden is very limited. It is up to us to change that!

2 kommentarer:

Roger sa...

"This issue - to understand that the most crucial question for a socialist in our time is our very survival on this small planet - is something that the Norwegian Labour Youth (AUF) has a very strong tradition on working with."

Oh so true. When me and Anders Ygeman kinda nicked their Vote No-manifesto (for the EU) in the mid-90s we had to rewrite all the environmental chapters, cause they would have been impossible to use in Sweden.

"Swedish social democracy was much better on working with this in the 1980's when Anna Lindh was chair of the SSU and really pushed the issues in the public debate"

I am not sure on this one though. A lot of No to the bridge and Help fix your local lake, but not really pushing the issue on the structural level, I would say.

Peter Gustavsson sa...

OK, fair enough. The difference between the environmental debate in SSU and in AUF is that AUF has succeeded to take the debate up on a higher level - global solidarity and the issue of survival. If you take the slogan "think globally, act locally", AUF has done much of the first part while the SSU environmental wave was very much about the latter.

As long as environmental issues is seen as being solely about how you deal with your own garbage, it is doomed to be seen as boring by most political activists. No one really succeeded in telling my SSU generation that it is about much more than that. OK, Anders Ygeman tried, and I guess I'm still somewhat inspired by those "AUF inspired" speeches he held in 1994-97.

The acute problems with unemployment and cuts in the welfare state took the grip on all political debate in the middle and late 1990's, and then all these globalisation, terror and war debates started. The environmental issues fell back on the agenda. It's time to change that!