Dev’t model as a cross | Inquirer Opinion

Dev’t model as a cross

/ 08:29 PM June 25, 2012

The noon sun burned and the heat was just unbearable. Hours later, darkness took over and the night began with thunder and lightning. A heavy downpour followed, causing floodwaters to rise. Expectedly, transportation stood still.

As I write this, the rains have ceased. But in the rest of the world, extreme drought and rain alternate in buffeting the planet—not in a matter of seasons but in a matter of hours! The global climate has been altered by man’s carbon footprint and the ongoing “development model.”

The planet cannot endure more of the pressures bearing on it. The costs of living have increased everywhere. Poverty continues to grow, along with the population.

Greece has voted for new leaders. Welcome development, perhaps, if not for the circulating news that it wants a moratorium on debt payment. Frankly, I see no harm in that scenario, considering that the global business world is running on debt and more restructured debts. What makes the scenario worrisome is the rising corruption rate among the rich. How often do we read and hear of some corporate names once respected but now tarnished with fraud and corruption?

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The time has come for stockholders to act and speak out! It is encouraging that some have already done so, putting a cap on CEO earnings and saying “No!” to environmentally and socially impacted transactions. They are obviously aware that these are the causes of climate change, which will forever kill the planet.

Yet, world leaders are still engrossed in saving the anemic global economy by imposing austerity measures on peoples and countries that have done no harm. We need to see the same iron hand applied to those damaging Mother Earth, specifically those who harm our environment in the guise of development and progress.

Development means making life better for the people. It means providing better food, better water supply, better shelter, as well as better employment to sustain their living.

The “development model” now being used globally has failed and must be changed. The sooner it is done, the better. Anything that falls short in responding to this urgency allows more abuse of the environment.

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The time has come for better change to unfold, and that time is NOW!

—ANTONIO M. CLAPAROLS,

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president,

Ecological Society of the Philippines

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TAGS: climate change, environment, letters, Population growth

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