The shameless sham shuffles on. World leaders have descended on Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, for another United Nations climate summit. COP(out)-27 promises delegates a great stay at one of Egypt’s prime resorts, “known for its sheltered sandy beaches, clear waters and coral reefs,” according to the ubiquitous folks at Google.

          The planet would be better served if these folks just stayed home instead of contributing to air pollution with their flights – and the hot air they will be spewing.

          People are walking all over the Mississippi River bed, accessing one-time islands and finding Civil War shipwrecks while Midwest grain barges are marooned in the backwaters.

          That’s one example supporting a Dartmouth College report passed on by Science Daily:

          “Researchers report that more severe heat waves resulting from global warming have already cost the world economy (sixteen) trillions of dollars since the early 1990s.”

          The BBC reported the past summer’s drought was the worst in 500 years. It added that Spain’s olive oil production was “devastated.” But, confused almond trees were blooming again this autumn.

          (And, my lilacs, apparently reading the summer drought as winter, are sprouting buds.)

          The evidence of global warming is as irrefutable as the determined opposition to meaningful reforms by those resort-going representatives of the status quo. (But, they can take heart, as The Guardian reports, because “COP-27 protesters will be corralled in desert away from (the) climate conference.”)

          The pre-conference UN report called actions since last year’s hot air conference “highly inadequate.”

          Words without commitment will do that. Common Dreams reported last week that the G20 major industrial countries and multilateral development banks spent about $55 billion a year from 2019-2021 to prop up oil, gas and coal while contributing just $29 billion a year for clean energy projects.

          The countries and banks all promise green action. Turns out the long green of money proves  more enticing. Al Gore told a New York Times climate policy summit that it “is ridiculous to have a climate denier (appointed by Donald Trump) the head of the World Bank.”

          In one late October week, Common Dreams ran these headlines:

          • “Biden’s LNG Export Goal ‘Would Spell Climate Disaster,’ Analysis Warns”

          • “2 Billion Kids to Face Extreme Heatwave Threat by 2050, Warns UNICEF”

          • “’Not a Single Global Indicator Is on Track’ to Reverse Deforestation by 2030: Analysis”

          And while Common Dreams noted a Lancet study declared a “healthy human future still possible if world ditches fossil fuels,” there are moneyed interests who would cash their last royalty check if the bank vaults were melting. (Hyperbole.)

          In Greta Thunberg’s Sweden, a newly-elected rightwing government’s first order of business was to gut the country’s independent, five-decade old environmental ministry and put its survivors under the minister for energy, business and industry. Yeah, those are the folks you want protecting you from – well, their own polluting ways.

          Regressive right-wingers? During budget negotiations last month, Common Dreams reported: “GOP threatens to hold economy hostage to slash climate investments.”

          At the first of this month, RUV, Iceland’s national broadcasting service, noted: “COP-27 Is a working session rather than a forum for major decisions.”

          Right. More talk. More hot air. No action. Too much money is riding on the other side – and that money owns the delegates.

          Stephens County Democrats will meet Thursday at 7 p.m. in Room 506 of the Morris Building at Red River Vo-Tech on West Bois D’Arc.

          (Gary Edmondson is chair of the Stephens County Democratic Party: <> or <>.)

Another massive waste of energy…

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