tv To the point Deutsche Welle December 13, 2019 1:30am-2:01am CET
people of east germany. the mideast trant. commerce germany unity journalist on the board was about to sing. 30 years later it looks back on the time interest in. storage system are going to g.w. . as un climate negotiations enter their decisive week in madrid young activists thronged the city's streets demanding that world leaders get serious at their head time magazine's person of the year gratitude bag to school stripes are the worldwide movement fridays for future focusing attention on the climate crisis as never before and helping spur initiatives like the new e.u. commission's trillion euro green deal many see the madrid negotiations as the last chance to set the world on track to avoid a worst case scenario with evidence of the crisis effects mounting many people are
wondering whether the current climate anxiety comes too little too late and that our topic. cut cut cut cut. welcome to to the point we've got 3 top guests to explore where things stand stephanie i'm stuart is a professor of ocean physics who heads earth systems analysis at the renowned potsdam institute for climate impact research he says the science is clear we are facing catastrophic risks and we need to act fast to avoid them it's time for decisive action not for ice id. alan posner is an influential blogger and commentator for the german newspaper and he says we need courage not anxiety in order to save the climate democracy capital. ism and the dream of
a good life for everyone abandoning one of these names lynn danger all of them. and it's quite a pleasure to welcome the clara meyer she is a spokesperson for friday's for future berlin and she says while a certain fear shows real concern it's important that this concern is now channeled into action especially from large corporations and politicians who hold a great responsibility to pass legislation controlling this climate this crisis. so korea let me start out by asking you what does this term this phenomenon of climate anxiety mean to you while i feel like. it shows that people are realizing what catastrophe. are actually n. i feel like a lot of people are now realizing what is happening in europe seeing what is
happening in the global south and are simply afraid of what will come and what is already happening climate anxiety steffen is becoming now a recognized term for distress associated with global warming including on the part of people who are not yet directly affected or appear not to be directly affected by catastrophic risks like the one you mentioned in your opening statement do you think this climate anxiety is a positive force that will actually stimulate the kind of change that you called for. well i think 1st of all it's just a natural human reaction if you are faced with major threats for your future and the future of your children that that causes a certain amount of anxiety the key thing is to not kind of leave that to you to suppress the problem and turn away from it but rather to confront it and avoid these risks in your opening statement seemed to suggest that you think
climate anxiety could wind up being counterproductive. yes yes i do i i mean. we have to fight climate change the 1st person to say that the 1st leader of a government to say that was maggie thatcher in 19891 day before the fall of the button wall in front of the united nations so this is been on the agenda for a long time all i'm saying is my caveat is that you can't you mustn't allow climate exile to dominate everything else i mean you mustn't get into a position where you say i'm so afraid of this change that we have to clamp down the democracy individual rights all i'm so afraid of of climate change and catastrophic dangers which the scientists predict that it's too bad you guys in africa and asia and latin america we can't. we simply can't afford you to come up to our level stuff like that i mean i do think that we need to take
a balanced view climate change is a real problem just like i know fighting communism was a problem just like fighting the 2nd world war against the nazis was a problem and it has to be tackled but without giving up core values of our system that's what you know what he suggests i think anxiety is a tool that we can use i think anxiety is the 1st point that people reach but that is i'd have to spur action and that is the point where we're at right now so we actually have to turn our anxiety into concrete action this is the only way that we can solve this issue clara you're a movement friday's for a future has tried to leverage climate anxiety and also anger as we have clearly seen from gratitude in baghdad who is express that anger powerfully time and again it's also provoked quite a backlash fridays for future has come in for some very harsh attacks so 1st
question how do you personally deal with that and secondly do you ever worry that friday's for future to some degree is polarizing the debate. it in a way that could actually wind up turning some people off i think we're unifying the debase i think we we are the people that try to be the glue of society try to push the people further because yes we demand legislation from politics we demand change from the large corporations who are responsible for 70 percent of the world's carbon emissions but that change has to be supported by the people so that is what we're trying to do and. personal deal with heat well since mostly i get our rape threats and death threats i don't take them seriously because i am very willing and everyone i feel like in friday's future is willing to engage in a constructive debate but if people are just threatening you blankly that is not a debates and shows that certain people. who are not willing to
benefit our society as a whole are just that they criticize us with with well even sometimes criminal means i mean there's even a group in germany that. the very large facebook group that threatens to drive cars into our demonstrations and that is not a healthy debate at all. thank you for for being so honest stefan my own climate distress increased rather significantly after i saw the damage done to a coastal area in the us that i have known since childhood and i asked myself when we see this heightened level now of. anxiety and awareness to what degree is it attributable to movements like friday's for future and to what degree is it attributable to the fact that people are now starting to see physical changes in
their own lives well i think it is both and of course people already affected millions of people affected by the increase in extreme weather events extreme heat waves extreme drought flash floods fires and so it takes home close to home for more and more people just in the last 20 years half a 1000000 people have died from the direct effects of extreme weather events and these extreme weather events on the rise and for a long time the media have often not linked to extreme weather events to climate change because you can't tell for an individual extreme weather event was is due to climate change or not but you can clearly see the increase in extreme weather events due to global heating and the physical reasons behind that are also largely understood. let's be honest here in europe most people have at most a limited experience of the crisis impact not so many parts of the global south
where sea level rise glacier melt and or drought are destroying people's homes and livelihoods our report takes us to the andes. the glaciers above are shrinking just one consequence of global heating that means less glacial water to last through extended periods of drought. rivers and the soil are drying out for millennia of the people have lived on this barren end. but now their survival is in doubt one plant species has always grown in the dry sailing ground a protein rich grain but in recent years extreme weather has destroyed the harvest and heavy rains have inundated large parts of the territory. it's getting worse as the extremes of more frequent it will because of the floods we've built a levee around the village. you know without the water would destroy all the houses
all if. for some years now young have been moving away now as climate change undercuts their subsistence many of their elders are thinking about fall when they're fleeing the weather extremes but where to. where to indeed alan would you say that europe and also perhaps north america are prepared for a major influx of climate change driven migration. we were obviously not prepared because we. almost collapsed in europe politically when we had to do with syrian migration which was driven by civil war and brutality of a. you know of the regime in syria and so no we we're not prepared to be controversial hadn't we should do everything we can to prevent this
migration for the simple reason that these people are needed especially the young people to to change things where they are i had a statistic that 31 percent of africans would prefer to move away from their continent and that these young ambitious like unlike in the like in your clip people who want a better life and we have to you know to simply say ok well. we response for the time it changed a great deal to have to take these refugees would say king the young the ambitious the people who want to change things away from where they needed to thinking says that i'm not you know. saying that we shouldn't take an refugees who come from for instance like syria but i am saying that we need to do much more. to enable them to combat climate change and adapt to climate change where they are and that includes by the way getting rid of or helping them get rid of the corrupt
governments which don't do anything for them neither in the in the field of of vaccination against diseases nor in the field of of helping them deal with drought nor in the fear of democrat as asian you know who simply take away the wolf them. as it's a complex problem you're not going to help the africans deal with climate change unless you help them get democracies that there will can be imposed on their corrupt leaders let me just ask you one thing about democracy because your opening statement said that we need to preserve democracy and the promise of a good life at the same time that we're fighting. the climate the climate crisis so migration is inevitable indeed we need to work on causes but it's inevitable doesn't that possibly represent a threat to the very democracies here in europe and north america that you want to preserve we've seen what kind of strains migration is already imposing well to be
quite frank it's not migration that. that destroys or endangers democracy it's right wing politicians who use migration as as a club to get back to democracy for their own areas and that happen but that will happen that's one reason why we have to control migration whether we like it or not because you know to be opening the borders isn't going to work politically but i think the more important reason is if you don't help people there i mean look at syria they're not going to do anything about time it's the too busy dodging bombs and then when the bombs on phillip on forming them or rebuilding their lives so we need a comprehensive support for democracy for development and for protection of climate for these countries rather than saying ok you guys. you know your country's ruined come here that's not going to work i think the debate is going in the wrong direction yes we are the main contributors to climate she is the global north just
have to accept this position that they have in the world and change that because they cannot be that we the people of the global north produce the most you to and that people in the global south are suffering from it additionally suffering. as they have suffered through colonialism and exploitation from us for the last centuries so yes this is just another problem we're laying upon them but it is one that we can control that we have the financial ability to control so we have to tackle this issue now and fast and in fact zara as you know part as the. process has also been a fund to help people in the global south both adapt to climate change and mitigate the damages that they're facing is that fund in your opinion adequately financed and supported by the rich countries no because we're the main contributors of climate change and if we actually truly when accept our position and change them
think about that we have to direct all of our capacities to solving the climate crisis because the climate crisis is a social crisis and as soon as we see that we can see that all issues that we have right now are directly linked to this crisis and that this is what we have to solve right now and on a global level and germany and europe as certain like financial and political leaders of this world have responsibility tackled a crisis and to lead the fight now stephan if i can be you're welcome to respond to that but also if i can just take us back to the report one more time because your research is all about catastrophic effects and i wish you would just please tell us what you are seeing in terms of the magnitude of climate caused impact right now and what you think we will be looking at in the next 10 years so
number of people likely to be displaced and other perhaps basic facts in a nutshell well the number of people that are likely to be this place is very difficult to estimate obviously but since you mentioned syria i should mention that the the mess protests and i understand broke out after the worst drought in the syrian history which according to sediment data from the eastern mediterranean was the worst in at least 900 years there which led to a harvest fayez. cattle dying and one and a half 1000000 interior refugees in syria which also. contributed to the stress and dissatisfaction with the government which didn't help the victims of the drought but where this will strike next and what extent is the very difficult to say but drought is certainly one of the risks that i worry about most including a major food crisis a colleagues of mine have just published
a study that shows that there is an increasing risk of synchronous drought in the main breadbaskets of the northern hemisphere and if that happens we are going to be in for a major food crisis then another thing that we worry a lot about is the tipping points in the earth system with self employed firing effects happen we already. see that out of the 15 tipping elements that have been identified in the climate system 9 active in this and that moving towards a critical tipping point for example for the complete loss of the greenland ice sheet which would take a very long time but it could be triggered at below 2 degrees or we see a slowdown of the gulf stream system in the north atlantic which has been long predicted and we're now seeing evidence that it has slowed down already by about 15 percent which means that the northern atlantic is the only region on the globe that
has actually been significantly cooling in the last one he is while the whole rest of the planet has been warming and there are major risks for our forests for example that we see the amazon forest is under threat that we now see big wildfires in australia where i have spent 6 months on a professorship so that's that's where it's very close to home for me when i see my friends and colleagues in australia sydney under a smoke of clouds cloud of smoke and mess of fire the wildfires burning there these are just you know i could go on let me ask you about the timetable because the. un's body of scientists the i.p.c.c. has issued some pretty dire warnings about the amount of time that we have to try to get on a track that would be at least to some degree sustainable what's your take how much time do you think we have in a word. very little if you see that to limit global warming to $1.00
degrees we only have remaining emissions budget of $340.00 gigatons and we are emitting 40 gigatons each year that means at current emissions level after 8 years we would have run out of any more possibility to emit so 2 and a great deal to me because i created her very much to mention these numbers every time in his speeches which was the i.p.c.c. has published them. already a year more than a year ago and nobody takes them seriously apparently but that's not an opinion that's the best science we have so on the un cup process the paris treaty and the conference of parties to the treaty that try to put policies in place that is the main vehicle by which the so-called world community is hoping to turn things around when you look at what's happened over the last 2 weeks how hopeful are you
that this process can be successful and i say that with a focus on carbon markets which have been in fact the dominant topic of this past week. or do you. how hopeful. i hope will be clever enough as a species to avoid our own extinction right. we have done in the past. look it's a i think that this cop at this conference is un conference had to move from chile to. to madrid because of because the government entity was no longer stable why were they don't have a stable because they put up the price of gas gasoline which is a week which is something we're demanding right and that led to to a people's rebellion now. these are the problems we have to deal with right i mean i think really we can to agree on the fact that we should we really need to stay
under 2 degrees global warming and that means definitely getting c o 2 emissions down and that means that any kind of burning of fossil fuel is really a stupid idea and a bad idea and almost a criminal idea but when you actually try to do it if it's missing a call in france if it's the government in chile it is the government to iran if it's the government in iraq. people are demonstrating and of course we're not doing that here but what i'm saying is we have to bring the people. along with us i mean obviously the government tehran is not going to do that because this is a dictatorship but we have to do it too if we don't want the kind of things that are happening in chile or happened last year in france that's what i'm saying well it has to be done in a socially just way otherwise we won't succeed with climate protection and bought some institute has of course made a report for the german government on how to do carbon pricing which included a carbon dividend that means that the money that the government takes in by
a carbon price would be given back to the people on a per capita basis so that the low income earners at the end of the year they have more money in their account and it's the high income earners which will carry a proportionately a larger burden which actually still is a tiny fraction of the annual income. yes i agree the examples you mentioned had no social balance whatsoever but is now important that we reach climate justice because that is our actual goal and what we see right now is if we don't act now if we don't act now we will not have a smooth. smooth passing to the next climate best option the longer we wait with the actions we take the more radical and. more drastic they have to be compared to our lifestyle right now so acting now is the less radical thing to do. a propos lifestyle germany just released it to sticks showing that there are more
s.u.v.s on the roads in this country than ever before so we have a whole lot of germans joining climate activism protests at the same time are we seeing real concrete evidence of people changing their consumption habits i know you are opening statements said that it's corporations and policy makers who need to move 1st but given the role of lobbies and given the coziness between many policy makers and for example the auto into. stree in germany do you really think that consumers can afford to wait for them to get wise i think it's very important not to mix the topics of consumption and production because what i always say is the grandma driving her to the supermarket because she can't walk anymore and the disabled person who use the plastic straw because otherwise you can't drink those are not the main polluters the main polluters are the large corporations and that is why we need legislation to prohibit them from producing. c
o 2 emissions or let's say s.u.v.s or generally politics that harm our environment to a large extent. yes we need a change in the mindset of people and that is i think fight as futures for our responsibility to a certain extent because we try to set the ground for legislation we try to. get the acceptance in society so that legislation is supported by the people. you called allan for the balance between what well essentially also for climate justice if you look at german energy policy and climate policy don't we see all kinds of contradictions that that illustrate exactly why this is so difficult on the one hand and very moderate rise in carbon pricing so that consumers will pay more for fuel on the other rebates to compete commuters how in the world is that going to
change behavior. i don't know i mean german climate policy has been a zig zag policy to put it mildly i mean. it was probably a really bad idea to. try to get out of coal and nuclear at the same time. it was a really bad idea to force people to put 10 percent ethanol in there in the and that caused the tanks which led to many is being. a mother a culture of meson in the countryside there's a looks of things that we're really doing wrong it's a process of trial and error other countries one have to go through that so in a way i don't understand about the about giving commuters the money. in that you don't assign it so since it makes sense but it seems you totally counterproductive this is only one of many counterproductive things that we're doing i hope other people will learn from mistakes i'm afraid i'll have to stop
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play. play play cut. mrs d. w. newsline from berlin u.k. conservatives are poised for a massive majority in parliament the 1st exit poll after thursday's general election signals the tories could have an $86.00 seat advantage of course fantastic news there for prime minister boris johnson and his pledge to go to get brant said done but it's a crushing defeat for the labor party and jeremy corbett will have full analysis also coming up europe tells the us to mind its own business over a controversial pipeline that will carry brushing gas to germany.
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