Climate Change-Society Change

Mira Rochyadi-Reetz's picture

[This post is part of a series offered by IECA members attending COP24 in Katowice, Poland.]

This is my first time at COP and since I am participating during the second week, I had the opportunity to check on some notes from a fellow COP24 observer who attended meetings last week. On my way to Katowice, I read a note by Marissa Lerner on 6th December about a Wrap-up Meeting of the Preparatory Phase for Talanoa Dialogue. The Chinese delegation’s statement sparked my interest. Her (or his?) statement was: “… IPCC is composed of very specialized scientists who can provide good predictions of scenarios as to economic and social costs or impacts. As to political risks involved they don’t have sufficient information.”

I think Immanuel Macron, who’s very proud of the Paris Agreement, is someone who definitely knows what political risks one may to face for creating a law committed to mitigating climate change. He just suspended planned increases in gasoline and diesel taxes after massive protests in Paris. His plan to act in favor of climate change was answered by huge demonstrations, which demanded he step down as president of France. We often speak up so loud that politicians should act fast and stop talking when it comes to climate change issue. We have no time. However, looking at what happened in France, I think one of the most important issue is to change people’s awareness and knowledge on why it is fair to get high tax on fossil fuels for the sake of climate protection. It is urgent to inform and educate the society about this.

Today I attended a high-level dialogue at the Indonesia Pavilion which was also attended by several ministries from Indonesia, Australia, Fiji Island and ambassadors of the UN. Those politicians presented and praised their programs for mitigating and adapting to climate change. They might be right. However, the slogan of the pavilion got my attention the most: “Climate Change-Society Change”. I think the slogan fits with the phenomena we see in France right now. Yes, those politicians and their policy are important to make changes, but society also plays an important role in change.




About the Author: 

Mira Rochyadi-Reetz is a research assistant at the Institute of Media and Communication Science at Technische Universität Ilmenau, Germany.