Davos climate protest

Matters will only get worse if immediate action isn’t taken

January 20, 2023


The 52nd annual meeting of the World Economic Forum underway in Davos has invited 1,500 business leaders as well as politicians, academics, experts, media-persons and advocates to discuss the global economic situation and make plans for the future. However, participants also include the leaders of major oil firms. This has irked climate activists who have accused these leaders of hijacking the climate debate. As a result, they decided to block the airport ahead of the flagship event to register their disagreement.

The protest, led by climate activist Greta Thunberg, aims to promote a “cease and desist” notice which demands CEOs of energy companies to immediately “stop opening any new oil, gas, or coal extraction sites, and stop blocking the clean energy transition we all so urgently need”. Otherwise legal action will be taken. Amid a severe climate catastrophe and an existential threat, these are fairly acceptable demands, especially considering the climate-related devastation that is occurring globally. Climate-induced natural disasters are not just resulting in losses worth billions but they are wiping out communities and making large areas of land uninhabitable. Erratic weather patterns are affecting the way humans have been living for centuries. Matters will only get worse if immediate action isn’t taken. With the global temperature increase surpassing 2°C, many environmentalists fear that it is already too late.

While NGOs and civil society organisations rush to mitigate the damage, global leaders have failed to do their part and their deep pockets have been successful at resisting any attempts to initiate change. International conferences such as COP27 and WEF provide nothing but hollow promises. Let us realise that we may be living on borrowed time. What is necessary is concrete and immediate action.

Published in The Express Tribune, January 20th, 2023.

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