Terrorism, Climate Change and India

Climate Change peaceA few hours from now, the world will witness the next UN Climate Negotiations take place in Poznan, Poland. A few hours ago – Mumbai, India’s financial capital was struck by a terrorist attack – one the most coordinated acts of terror the world has seen till date.

Though on the outset, the two events have nothing in common (save for the fact that the Mumbai attacks led to the cancellation of the Live Earth event and related events that were to follow) and that climate change and terrorism are two diffrent challenges faced by our civilization today, the cause and consequences of the two are in some way pretty much the same. And in order to ensure a peaceful world, it is important that both these challenges are tackled – the earlier the better.

Climate Change in India is also the story of inequitable distribution of resources and uneven consumption patterns. While some (can) consume and (thus) pollute more, others have no choice but to pollute. Poverty was once declared and is still believed to be the biggest polluter. Climate Change for India is also the story of costlier technology transfer and non-availability of the right technology at the right place and time.

The kind of coordinated terrorism we are witnessing in the country no doubt comes from outside, but is able to find base in India because the development in the country has been uneven. Not all sections of the society have benefitted or are even aware that India is now on the expressway to development. The challenge is huge for India because India is both the largest democracy of the world and claims to be the biggest most secular nation.

While being trained by Al Gore, to be able to deliver The Climate Project presentation effectively, I could not agree with Al when he said that climate change like terrorism is the biggest threat faced by mankind today. The challenges for both are same, since to fight terrorism we need to come together and work across departments, towns, cities and countries, and so is the case with fighting climate change. How much are we able to fight this menace and how quickly we can begin to win over them, will determine the time period this civilizations has on this Planet. Climatic Peace is what we should thus all pray for until then, hoping the COP delegates would declare a war against climate change.

First Posted on EcoWorldly

Govind Singh

Dr. Govind Singh is currently associate professor of environmental studies and associate dean of academic affairs at Jindal School of Environment & Sustainability, O.P. Jindal Global University, Delhi NCR. He can be reached at contact@govindsingh.com
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One thought on “Terrorism, Climate Change and India

  1. In the words of U.K. Chief Scientific Advisor David King, “the most severe problem that we are facing today—more serious even than the threat of terrorism.” WorldWatch has acknowledged this fact and so have a lot of other organisations…yet…even when a terrorist strike is replied with much action….a polar bear dying looking for land is not even considered something to think again about. 🙁

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