Canadian journalist Donna Laframboise. Former National Post & Toronto Star columnist, past vice president of the Canadian Civil Liberties Association. New posts: Mondays & Wednesdays.
In a 23-minute interview, filmed in the UK last month, I talk about activists and the UN’s climate process.
While I was in the UK recently, I had the pleasure of being interviewed by filmmaker Ben Pile, who blogs at Climate-Resistance.org. I’ve long been a fan of his writing because, like me, he’s more interested in the cultural, sociological, and historical aspects of the climate debate than in the interminable arguments over the science itself.
During this 23-minute video, we discuss last November’s UN climate summit held in Warsaw (COP 19). It was my first time attending one of these climate confabs, and I was struck by the role activists were permitted to play at a two-week event from which the public is excluded (I gained access on assignment with the National Post).
Summit organizers were oddly at pains to reassure participants that they are virtuous, caring individuals. But precious little empathy was actually on display. At their press conferences, the climate activists sounded like ungracious, petulant children – frustrated because their temper tantrums weren’t having the desired effect.
They had no empathy for tsunami-traumatized Japan (which announced in Warsaw that it won’t be able to meet its pre-tsunami emission reduction targets). Nor did I hear them utter a kind word about their hosts – Poland and its long-suffering people.
Far too often, climate activists seem oblivious to the larger historical and cultural context. They see only one thing – their own, narrow agenda. I find fanaticism of this sort rather frightening.
The video can also be viewed on Pile’s blog here – where comments are welcome.