Thanks to the Virus . . .

Thanks to the Virus

we are getting a taste of what the world will look like only a few years down the track when climate change takes hold.
Less air travel. Greta Thunberg alerted us to it with her example.
Less mass tourism destroying our natural environment and making precious destinations like Venice or Barcelona unbearable for their residents to actually live in.
Less consumption of cheap (Chinese) products designed for our overflowing landfills.
Less ‘can-do-without’ mass gatherings and events.
Less chasing the fairy-tale of perpetual growth in a “dig and gig” (Naomi Klein) economy based on environment and climate destroying extraction together with dispiriting exploitation of the work force by taking away job security.

Thanks to the Virus the upwards trajectory of increases of the main greenhouse gas CO2 in the atmosphere will show a dent this year despite the enormous emissions from the Australian bush fires.

Thanks to the Virus the climate gets a reprieve.

Thanks to the Virus we are forced to learn the lesson that the neo-liberal ideology that we are only egoistic greedy individuals and “society does not exist” (Margret Thatcher) is failing. We will experience the opposite. Only collective action as a society will give us any chance to contain the spread of this deadly disease.

Thanks to the Virus we are learning that it is crucial in a crisis to be prepared.

Thanks to the Virus we are learning that time matters for our preparedness. In this case time is measured by days and weeks to learn about the spread of the disease and prepare the health system for our response.
This lesson should be applied to climate change where the world leaders so far have wasted time measured in years and decades.

Thanks to the Virus we are now force fed the experience of a live similar to what it will look like under climate change. The difference being that this time it happened over night. If we would take climate change seriously we would be prepared. The alternatives in the entire economic system, infrastructure, power generation, transport, food production and a just and fair distribution of income and wealth would be in place introduced gradually.

Thanks to the Virus we are given the opportunity to learn.
We will learn that the mainly for profit skeletal health system of the US will do much worse than the “socialist” public health systems of Europe and New Zealand for that matter.
We will learn that he most neo-liberal regime in the world the US will fare worst in this crisis having all but destroyed all communal collective organisations and undermined all previous efforts of preparedness to deal with a crisis like this.
We will learn that a country without paid (sick) leave cannot hope for workers to self quarantine.
We will learn that countries with an inclusive cohesive society will do much better than countries divided by racism, xenophobia and hatred.
We will learn the outcome of the presently running experiment of “Will People listen to the Scientist” ? (Neil deGrasse Tyson)

Thanks to the Virus we will relatively quickly get the answers to this most important question.
Why does it have to take thousands of lives to get this most important answer ?
The right answer is the one and only chance we have to act in time to avert the climate crisis.

Greta Thunberg

repeats again and again the mantra of her climate campaign : Listen to the scientists !
Will we ?

by Dr. Hans B. Grueber

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