“What happens if the climate skeptics are wrong? Catastrophe.”
Those were the words of Secretary of State John Kerry here in Lima today as he addressed the COP 20 climate talks on the need to foster global action to address climate change.
Secretary Kerry also emphasized the 97 percent scientific consensus on manmade global warming, calling it “a dramatic statement of fact that no one of good conscience or faith should ignore.”
Kerry spoke firmly about the climate-related costs of fossil fuels, saying that “oil and coal are largely responsible” for manmade global warming, and cautioned against any further expansion of fossil fuel use.
“If developing nations choose the energy choices of the past rather than the energy choices of the future,” they would further endanger the planet and miss out on “one of the greatest economic opportunities of all time” to build economies based on clean energy technology, Kerry said.
“Coal and oil may be cheap ways to power an economy today, in the near term, but I urge nations around the world, the vast majority of whom are represented here at this conference, look further down the road,” Kerry said. “I urge you to consider the real, actual, far-reaching costs that come along with what some think is the cheaper alternative. It's not cheaper.”