Monday, August 29, 2011

Debate on climate change, culture and art

The panel
Plastic bag for culture, yet biodegradable

I went to listen to a debate about ecology and culture. Basically the question was 'what can the cultural sector do to prevent climate change which, when nothing is done, will make children sick in about 20 years'. There is a radical solution: Insulate your house, don’t eat meat or fish, don’t fly and in 20 years we would have avoided that the temperature would go up with the fatal 2°C. I learned that working half an hour equals drinking a glass of water. Each worth one unit, and the bad news is: one person has only 40 units per day for a good ecological footprint. Many solutions are at best tentative or even misleading. I try to buy organic and fair trade food and products, I have paid to carbon offset flights but it seems that is not the right system. Many artists have renovated their house in order to leave a smaller footprint, some installed solar power, others make artwork with low ecological impact. As a poet and literary translator I wonder whether I do have to feel guilty for using my laptop extensively, for using a lot of paper to check in print for mistakes. I wonder that people speak about not eating meat or fish, not flying, making tickets more expensive but don’t really deal with social injustice or the cost of war, cost in lives, in destruction, in pollution by the heavy armored tanks, the war planes. I wonder what the ecological cost is of war. Or is war just considered to be a branch of polluting industry? And if you want to know how I went to this debate: I walked, I shared one cup of coffee (bio & fair trade) and connected to people.

No comments:

Post a Comment