My good colleage and Global Water Partnership Special Advisor, Mike Muller, writes: “Many of us participants arrived in Copenhagen by air. And some of us are feeling guilty about making the climate problem worse even as we try to solve it. But let’s put that guilty conscience to good use, and not just by planting the statutory ‘conscience tree.'”
Then he outlines a startling panorama of potential climate change impacts on water resources between South Africa (where he is from) and Europe. You can read his piece here: http://www.gwpforum.org/gwp/library/091208_MikeMuller_Outreach.pdf
His conclusion: “So what will you do as a penance for the damage you have done by coming to Copenhagen? Choose one intervention to help respond to the challenges you have seen:
– Take action to strengthen the understanding and management of water resources in one of the vulnerable countries
– Act to help the people on the ground to take decisions that make sense in the face of growing challenges.
– Support action to use the immense potential for renewable and sustainable development that the water resources offer
“And if you still insist on planting that tree, remember that trees can be part of the problem as well as the solution. In South Africa, plantation forestry and wild invasions of alien trees use scarce water, and have dried up streams and depleted groundwater. So if you do plant a tree to atone for your CO2 emissions, make sure it is the right tree in the right place.”