Trump Escapes to Davos but Gets Schooled by Young Climate Activists
President Trump escaped Washington and his Senate impeachment trial by flying to Davos, Switzerland for the World Economic Forum which is focused on combating climate change this year. He gave his usual fact-free stump speech calling climate activists, "the perennial prophets of doom," took credit for America's current economic expansion which actually began years before he took office and complained about the "fake" press and impeachment "hoax". Same speech, different country, and it wasn't received well.
BBC: "Economist Joseph Stiglitz, a Nobel Laureate, criticised Mr Trump's speech. According to Reuters news agency he said it was "astounding" and made "as if what we are seeing with our eyes are not there".
"Joint leader of Germany's Green Party, Robert Habeck, was scathing.
"Only self-praise, ignorance, disregard for everyone, no perception of global problems. It was the worst speech I've ever heard in my life."
Elsewhere at the Summit, Greta Thunberg took a more serious and mature approach by addressing the current climate science and warning of the risks posed by inaction, citing the "current best-available science."
AP: "Thunberg cited a report released in 2018 by the U.N.’s science panel that calculated the amount of additional carbon dioxide the atmosphere can absorb before global average temperature increases exceed 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 Fahrenheit). Leaders agreed to try to stay below that threshold when they signed the 2015 Paris climate accord, but scientists warn the chances of doing so are dwindling."
"Thunberg noted that the remaining carbon “budget” to confidently meet that target stood at just 420 gigatons of CO2 two years ago, the equivalent of 10 years of global emissions. Even with a more optimistic calculation, keeping the global temperature rise below 1.5 C would require a massive reduction in emissions over the next two decades."
Thunberg was joined by other young climate activists who echoed her call for immediate measures to address the crisis.
AP: "Salvador Gómez-Colón, who raised funds and awareness after Hurricane María devastated his native Puerto Rico in 2017, said young activists are doing more than just talking."
“We’re not waiting five, 10, 20 years to take the action we want to see. We’re not the future of the world, we’re the present, we’re acting now. We’re not waiting any longer.”
Years from now, when Donald Trump is simply considered an embarrassing political aberration, Thunberg and others of her generation will be remembered for their courage to speak truth to powerful economic interests whose profits depend on convincing enough of us that everything will be just fine.
By: Don Lam & Curated Content