A famous French television presenter has forced ten presidential candidates to sign a pact to enforce environmental policies. By threatening to run in the first round of the election and take precious votes, Nicholas Hulot, has managed to persuade the leading candidates to listen to his proposals on how France can do more to save the planet.
The Socialist candidate, Segolene Royal, said if she is elected president, she would personally take charge of an ambitious environmental programme to have a sustainable development. Similar sentiments were echoed by the conservative candidate, Nicolas Sarkozy, who pledged to do exactly what he said. “Global warming, declining biodiversity and environmental health must be dealt with urgently, it’s a question of survival.”
While the success of the media stunt remains to be seen, elsewhere in Paris, environmental experts from around the world have begun a meeting to discuss the issue. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change will deliver a definitive verdict on Friday on what needs to be done.
There is reported to be some disagreement over what forecasts will be made for sea level rise. Some scientists say mountain glaciers are shrinking three times faster than they were in the 1980s, a trend that suggests many will disappear within decades.
Most evidence makes it clear that the earth’s temperature has increased by at least three degrees Celsius over the last century. But some experts say in some regions, climate change has been much more significant with temperatures going up by as much as five degrees Celsius. The IPCC report is likely to contain stronger wording than its previous assessment, in 2001, on the likelihood that human activities are principally responsible for the climatic changes observed around the world.