La révolution climatique

Le monde traverse actuellement de grands bouleversements politiques, et l’évolution du climat est désormais un enjeu central à l’échelon national et international. Même les politiciens les plus récalcitrants – dont le Président George W. Bush aux Etats-Unis, le Premier ministre John Howard en Australie et le Premier ministre Stephen Harper au Canada – ne peuvent plus nier l’évidence. Les conclusions scientifiques sont sans ambiguïté, les changements climatiques dus à l’activité humaine sont perceptibles, et les électeurs sont de plus en plus nombreux à exiger une mobilisation des pouvoirs publics. Encore peu probable il y a quelques mois, l’adoption d’un accord international pour les décennies à venir semble possible dès 2010.

Les dirigeants politiques des pays producteurs de combustibles fossiles – comme les Etats-Unis, l’Australie et le Canada – ont prétendu que le réchauffement de la planète n’était qu’une hypothèse. Pendant plusieurs années, le gouvernement Bush a tenté de dissimuler la vérité, en effaçant les allusions aux conséquences de l’activité humaine dans les documents officiels, et même en essayant de taire les conclusions de climatologues de renom travaillant pour le gouvernement. Encore récemment, Exxon Mobil et d’autres entreprises payaient des groupes de pression pour influencer le débat public.

Pourtant, la vérité a eu raison de ces tractations. Les phénomènes naturels ont fait passé un message fort et souvent dévastateur. L’ouragan Katrina a fait prendre conscience au public américain du risque d’augmentation de l’intensité des tempêtes destructrices. De même, la grande sécheresse qui a frappé l’Australie l’année dernière a ridiculisé l’attitude insouciante de M. Howard.

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