"How could we have faced disaster and extinction in the eye, and looked away knowingly?"
It has been said so much that it might be losing its effect, but it is worth repeating nonetheless that climate change is the most critical problem facing humanity and the survival of it. It is a problem that is going to require what no other problem in the past has required: full scale global co-operation on the part of each and every country in the world, for an issue that supersedes national boundaries. It is a problem that is challenging the discourse of what it means to achieve "progress" in society (which seems to have been defined with increased emissions spewing) and causing massive reflection on the way our world is, and the way we live our lives.
Evidence has already projected how rising sea levels and sea temperatures will effect the world, and the disasters of climate change through intensified natural disasters is just "a taste" of the full out calamity of what climate change will bring. Scientists who have dedicated their lives to the issue have said that global greenhouse gas emissions need to peak by 2015 and then start to come down to combat the worst effects of climate change. The Kyoto Protocol expires in 2012, and for a new effective global agreement to begin in 2013, negotiations need to conclude in 2009 in Copenhagen.
As Yvo de Boer, executive secretary the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change said, the countdown to Copenhagen is on and the failure for the world to agree on climate agreement would be "disastrous". But Poznan barely just reaffirmed what was established in Bali last year save for a few tiny victories, and many countries are still either delaying putting forth positions, or have put forth positions that do not address the problem at all (Canada).
The road to Copenhagen begins today, but will countries get their act together, and solve the greatest problem ever facing humanity? Or will people in the future look back at this time and think, how could we have faced disaster and extinction in the eye, and looked away knowingly?