A charming image to accompany this article in the NYT where, in light of COP15, the Op-Ed editors asked writers from four different continents to give their own report on the climate changes they’ve experienced close to home.
“You’re the ones who will have to live with the effects of climate change,” we caution our youngest as he consumes yet another burger. As a 12-year-old, he has yet to comprehend that at some point he may have to choose between beef and rain forests, plane journeys or glaciers, rationing or perishing. He has no idea that insurance premiums are already rising fast (too fast!), due to the kind of climate-induced flooding that has been filling many a Danish basement. On the other hand, he knows Denmark will have vineyards, and by then he’ll be able to swim with dolphins! Pretty cool, yeah?
I haven’t the heart to mention the plagues of malaria mosquitoes, the risks of contracting West Nile virus and cholera. Neither have I troubled him with forecasts of the cod disappearing from Danish waters, or with the gloomy prospects for growing Christmas trees here. I did, though, (mis)appropriate the climate angle in the course of a discussion about pets. “A medium-sized dog pollutes as much as a 4.6-liter Toyota Land Cruiser clocking more than 6,000 miles a year!” I tell him, reading out of the newspaper. “Yeah, sure,” he says, and rolls his eyes. As if.
…In Denmark, there are more than 100 wind turbine cooperatives, and special exchanges where you can buy shares in them. Our Christmas will be a peaceful one: we’ll talk about the wind and the weather, but in the nice way, so we’ll forget that this year once again Christmas wasn’t white. The snow is going, too.