Warnings that failure to deal with the climate emergency will reverse decades of progress in poverty alleviation, lead to increasing conflicts and create tens of millions of climate refugees as the earth becomes inhabitable are stark.
COP26 has focused on the major economies of the word but decarbonisation is impossible without real engagement with less developed countries. Overcoming the climate emergency while lifting half the world out of poverty will require economic planning that also addresses the economic imbalance in the world. This will require technology sharing and economic development which can assist developing countries in effectively developing with green infrastructure.
This should not mean enforcing a completely unfair austerity on the undeveloped world. Merely requiring the developing world to use less than we are willing to use in the West is deeply unfair and will lead not only to resentment, but utimately to conflict.
We need a political programme which places not mere targets, but a method of achieving goals. It can not be based on “incentives”, but instead by political application of capital towards specific goals. Democratic planning and a central role for the state in the direction of resources is not just desirable but necessary. The decisions we make now will have very serious long term consequences for us all.
It is also time that all countries, especially the developing world, were fully part of the conversation and not just the major economic powers. The most developed countries seem to also be the most keen on pulling up the ladder behind them.
Socialism and democratic planning are the solution to the climate crisis and the only feasible way to avert civilisational crisis.