In Their Own Words - Policy
- Club of Rome, The First Global Revolution, consultants to the UN.
In searching for a new enemy to unite us, we came up with the idea that pollution, the threat of global warming, water shortages, famine and the like would fit the bill ... All these dangers are caused by human intervention and it is only through changed attitudes and behaviour that they can be overcome. The real enemy, then, is humanity itself.
-Walden Bello, Bangkok Post, 29 March 2008
Confronted with the Apocalypse, humanity cannot self-destruct. It may be a difficult road, but we can be sure that the vast majority will not commit social and ecological suicide to enable the minority to preserve their privileges. However it is achieved, a thorough reorganisation of production, consumption and distribution will be the end result of humanity's response to the climate emergency and the broader environmental crisis.
-Czech President Vaclav Klaus
Utopia is an excellent escape for politicians because they can busy themselves with far-away goals and don't have to worry about immediate problems. Climate change is an excellent issue for that escape.
- Stephen Schneider, Stanford Professor of Climatology, lead Author of many IPCC reports
...we need to get some broad based support, to capture the public's imagination.... So we have to offer up scary scenarios, make simplified, dramatic statements and make little mention of any doubts.... Each of us has to decide what the right balance is between being effective and being honest.
- Timothy Wirth, former US Under Sec of State, current Head of the UN Foundation
We've got to ride this global warming issue. Even if the theory of global warming is wrong, we will be doing the right thing in terms of economic and environmental policy.
- Christine Stewart, former Canadian Minister of the Environment
No matter if the science of global warming is all phony... climate change provides the greatest opportunity to bring about justice and equality in the world.
- Emeritus Professor Daniel Botkin
The only way to get our society to truly change is to frighten people with the possibility of a catastrophe.
- David Rockefeller, Club of Rome executive member
We are on the verge of a global transformation. All we need is the right major crisis...
- Al Gore, from Earth in Balance
We are close to a time when all of humankind will envision a global agenda that encompasses a kind of Global Marshall Plan to address the causes of poverty and suffering and environmental destruction all over the earth.
- Mikhail Gorbachev, State of the World Forum
We need a new paradigm of development in which the environment will be a priority... World civilization as we know it will soon end... We have very little time and we must act... If we can address the environmental problem, it will have to be done within a new system, a new paradigm. We have to change our mindset, the way humankind views the world.
- UN Commission for Global Governance report (1999)
The concept of national sovereignty has been immutable, indeed a sacred principle of international relations. It is a principle which will yield only slowly and reluctantly to the new imperatives of global environmental cooperation.
Club of Rome, The First Global Revolution
Democracy is not a panacea. It cannot organize everything and it is unaware of its own limits. These facts must be faced squarely. Sacrilegious though this may sound, democracy is no longer well suited for the tasks ahead. The complexity and the technical nature of many of today’s problems do not always allow elected representatives to make competent decisions at the right time.
- Mikhail Gorbachev, Club of Rome member, State of the World Forum, 1996
The emerging 'environmentalization' of our civilization and the need for vigorous action in the interest of the entire global community will inevitably have multiple political consequences. Perhaps the most important of them will be a gradual change in the status of the United Nations. Inevitably, it must assume some aspects of a world government.
- Gordon Brown, British Prime Minister
A New World Order is required to deal with the Climate Change crisis.
- Dr Robert Muller, UN Assistant Secretary General
In my view, after fifty years of service in the United Nations system, I perceive the utmost urgency and absolute necessity for proper Earth government. There is no shadow of a doubt that the present political and economic systems are no longer appropriate and will lead to the end of life evolution on this planet. We must therefore absolutely and urgently look for new ways.
- UN Commission for Global Governance report (1999)
Regionalism must precede globalism. We foresee a seamless system of governance from local communities, individual states, regional unions and up through to the United Nations itself.
- Mikhail Gorbachev, State of the World Forum, 1996
The alternative to the existing world order can only emerge as a result of a new human dimension of progress.... We envision a revolution of the mind, a new way of thinking....
- Al Gore, from Earth in the Balance
We require a central organizing principle - one agreed to voluntarily. Minor shifts in policy, moderate improvement in laws and regulations, rhetoric offered in lieu of genuine change - these are all forms of appeasement, designed to satisfy the public’s desire to believe that sacrifice, struggle and a wrenching transformation of society will not be necessary.
- Al Gore, from Earth in the Balance
Adopting a central organizing principle... means embarking on an all-out effort to use every policy and program, every law and institution... to halt the destruction of the environment.
- excerpt, UN Agenda 21
Effective execution of Agenda 21 will require a profound reorientation of all human society, unlike anything the world has ever experienced a major shift in the priorities of both governments and individuals and an unprecedented redeployment of human and financial resources. This shift will demand that a concern for the environmental consequences of every human action be integrated into individual and collective decision-making at every level.
– from the Earth Charter website
The current course of development is thus clearly unsustainable. Current problems cannot be solved by piecemeal measures. More of the same is not enough. Radical change from the current trajectory is not an option, but an absolute necessity. Fundamental economic, social and cultural changes that address the root causes of poverty and environmental degradation are required and they are required now.
- Maurice Strong, former Secretary General of UNEP
Isn't the only hope for the planet that the industrialized civilizations collapse? Isn't it our responsiblity to bring that about?
- Mikhail Gorbachev, Club of Rome member
I envisage the prinicles of the Earth Charter to be a new form of the ten commandments. They lay the foundation for a sustainable global earth community.
– Sir James Lovelock, BBC Interview (2002)
The big threat to the planet is people: there are too many, doing too well economically and burning too much oil.
- Maurice Strong, founder of UNEP, opening speech of 1992 Rio Earth Summit
...current lifestyles and consumption patterns of the affluent middle class - involving high meat intake, use of fossil fuels, appliances, air-conditioning, and suburban housing - are not sustainable. A shift is necessary which will require a vast strengthening of the multilateral system, including the United Nations.
- Sir James Lovelock, Healing Gaia: Practical Medicine for the Planet (1991)
Humans on the Earth behave in some ways like a pathogenic micro-organism, or like the cells of a tumor.
- preface of Down to Earth by Prince Philip
I don't claim to have any special interest in natural history, but as a boy I was made aware of the annual fluctuations in the number of game animals and the need to adjust the cull to the size of the surplus population.
- Ted Turner, founder of CNN and major UN donor
A total population of 250-300 million people, a 95% decline from present levels, would be ideal.
- Prince Phillip, Duke of Edinburgh, patron of the World Wildlife Fund
If I were reincarnated I would wish to be returned to earth as a killer virus to lower human population levels.
- David Brower, first Executive Director of the Sierra Club
Childbearing should be a punishable crime against society, unless the parents hold a government license. All potential parents should be required to use contraceptive chemicals, the government issuing antidotes to citizens chosen for childbearing.
- Al Gore, An Inconvenient Truth
Humanity is sitting on a time bomb. If the vast majority of the world's scientists are right, we have just ten years to avert a major catastrophe that could send our entire planet's climate system into a tail-spin of epic destruction involving extreme weather, floods, droughts, epidemics and killer heat waves beyond anything we have ever experienced - a catastrophe of our own making.
- Angela Merkel, German Chancellor
Climate Change is the greatest threat that human civilisation has ever faced.
- Barak Obama, US Presidential Candidate
...climate change is real. Not only is it real, it's here, and its effects are giving rise to a frighteningly new global phenomenon: the man-made natural disaster.
- Arnold Schwarzenegger, Governor of California
We simply must do everything we can in our power to slow down global warming before it is too late.
- Prince Charles
Climate change should be seen as the greatest challenge to ever face mankind.
- Gordon Brown, British Prime Minister
Climate change makes us all global citizens, we are truly all in this together.
- Al Gore, Earth in Balance
The fate of mankind, as well as of religion, depends upon the emergence of a new faith in the future.' Armed with such a faith, we might find it possible to resanctify the earth.
- Robert Muller, founder of UNESCO
What an incredible planet in the universe this will be when we will be one human family living in justice, peace, love and harmony with our divine Earth, with each other and with the heavens.
- Rene Dubos, board member, Planetary Citizens
The earth is literally our mother, not only because we depend on her for nurture and shelter but even more because the human species has been shaped by her in the womb of evolution.... Our salvation depends upon our ability to create a religion of nature.
- Maurice Strong, former Secretary General of UNEP, opening speech of 1992 Rio Earth Summit
It is the responsibility of each human being today to choose between the force of darkness and the force of light. We must therefore transform our attitudes, and adopt a renewed respect for the superior laws of DIVINE NATURE.
- Envision Earth
The spirit of our planet is stirring! The Consciousness of Goddess Earth is now rising against all odds, in spite of millennia of suppression, repression and oppression inflicted on Her by a hubristic and misguided humanity.
The Earth is a living entity, a biological organism with psychic and spiritual dimensions. With the expansion of the patriarchal religions that focused on a male God majestically stationed in Heaven ruling over the Earth and the Universe, the memory of our planet's innate Divinity was repressed and banished into the collective unconscious of humanity.
– Sir James Lovelock, Gaia: A New Look At Life
Still more important is the implication that the evolution of homo sapiens, with his technological inventiveness and his increasingly subtle communications network, has vastly increased Gaia's range of perception. She is now through us awake and aware of herself. She has seen the reflection of her fair face through the eyes of astronauts and the television cameras of orbiting spacecraft.
Our sensations of wonder and pleasure, our capacity for conscious thought and speculation, our restless curiosity and drive are hers to share. This new interrelationship of Gaia with man is by no means fully established; we are not yet a truly collective species, corralled and tamed as an integral part of the biosphere, as we are as individual creatures. It may be that the destiny of mankind is to become tamed, so that the fierce, destructive, and greedy forces of tribalism and nationalism are fused into a compulsive urge to belong to the commonwealth of all creatures which constitutes Gaia.
- Robert Muller, former UN Assistant Secretary General, founder of UNESCO
Little by little a planetary prayer book is thus being composed by an increasingly united humanity seeking its oneness. Once again, but this time on a universal scale, humankind is seeking no less than its reunion with 'divine,' its transcendence into higher forms of life. Hindus call our earth Brahma, or God, for they rightly see no difference between our earth and the divine. This ancient simple truth is slowly dawning again upon humanity, as we are about to enter our cosmic age and become what we were always meant to be: the planet of god.
– Sir James Lovelock, Ages of Gaia
What if Mary is another name for Gaia? Then her capacity for virgin birth is no miracle . . . it is a role of Gaia since life began . . . She is of this Universe and, conceivably, a part of God. On Earth, she is the source of life everlasting and is alive now; she gave birth to humankind and we are part of her.
- Mikhail Gorbachev, Green Cross International
Nature is my god. To me, nature is sacred; trees are my temples and forests are my cathedrals.
- Al Gore, Earth in the Balance, page 260
The spiritual sense of our place in nature... can be traced to the origins of human civilization.... The last vestige of organized goddess worship was eliminated by Christianity.
- Earth Pledge, Global Education Associates
I pledge allegiance to the Earth and all its sacred parts. Its water, land and living things and all its human hearts.
- Global Alliance for Transforming Education
By fostering a deep sense of connection to others and to the earth in all its dimensions, holistic education encourages a sense of responsibility to self to others and to the planet.
- Prayer to the Earth, US Student Textbook
The earth is not dead matter. She is alive. Now begin to speak to the earth as you walk. You can speak out loud, or just talk to her in your mind. Send your love into her with your exhalation. Feel your heart touching upon the heart of the planet. Say to her whatever words come to you: Mother Earth, I love you. Mother Earth, I bless you. May you be healed. May all your creatures be happy. Peace to you, Mother Earth. On behalf of the human race, I ask forgiveness for having injured you. Forgive us, Mother Earth.