As we move into a new decade there are many reasons to feel down given the rising denial of climate change among leaders and an alarming move in politics to the extremes. The targets of the Paris Agreement are slipping and the onset of the worst of climate change seems inevitable.
You would understandably be forgiven for being depressed about the future ☹
But we are optimistic? We are under no illusion, there will be struggle and change ahead, but we believe that the resilience and ingenuity of the human race will prevail and catastrophe will be averted.
What makes us optimistic:
- As sustainable architects we know that there are solutions to make buildings that have minimal impact on the environment and these can be built with today’s technology1.
- Electrification of transport has now been demonstrated to work and its prevalence is increasing every day2.
- There is enough energy in the world (wind, sun, waves etc.) to power the world’s energy needs many times over3 and the technology exists to harvest it.
- The wold population growth rate is decreasing and it is possible that the world population will peak sometime in this century4.
The question of “how” to deal with climate change is already clear, what is more uncertain is the question of “when” and how much damage will be done before change is reversed. It is frustrating to know that solutions exist but they are not being implemented.
2019 has seen an increase in awareness of environmental matters among the general population ? Now what is needed is that everyone demands action of their governments because the problem is a global problem that needs to be tackled with international cooperation. As an individual you can influence change when making purchasing choices (including building or renovating). Let the twenties be the decade of climate reversal ?
(3) Chapter 8.2 World Energy Resources: Solar by World Energy Council, 2013
(4) World Population Prospects 2019 by The United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs.