“But first - a couple hints. The 1962 publication of Rachel Carson’s book Silent Spring raised awareness of the dangers of the pesticide DDT. As a result, its use in U.S. agriculture was banned in 1972 and worldwide in 2004. Those bans are largely credited with the successful comeback from near-extinction of the bald eagle and the peregrine falcon.
“Also, in 1987 the international community agreed to the Montreal Protocol on Depletion of the Ozone Layer that forbid the use of CFCs. These chemicals were destroying the protective atmospheric ozone over Antarctica. Once CFCs were banned, ozone levels (the good kind!) began to increase. They’re expected to recover to former levels over the coming decades.
“Now panelists, I’ve received your written questions and will begin answering them. When you think you’ve uncovered the secret, sound your buzzer. Here we go!
“Yes – The issue is of global importance.
Yes – It affects a wide range of concerns including infrastructure, health, the economy, environmental degradation and even national security.
No - It cannot be solved by individual countries alone.
Yes – It does have to do with global spending.
Yes – It involves the International Energy Agency (IEA). Ima, how did you ever guess that one??
BUZZZZ! “Willie! Do you think you know the answer?”
“I do! Governments have allocated $16 trillion in fiscal support throughout the Covid pandemic to rejuvenate economies and protect their citizens. Is the secret that funds spent for clean energy and climate mitigation is exceeding expectations?”
WAH,WAH,WAH! “I’m sorry Willie, it’s just the OPPOSITE. The IEA found that governments have only spent 2% of that $16 trillion to address climate issues. That’s only about 35% of the estimated amount needed to reach net-zero emissions by 2050. Instead of greenhouse gas emissions dropping they’re continuing to rise!
“But the DDT and ozone cases demonstrate that the global community CAN come together and overcome seemingly insurmountable problems. Now it’s time to ante-up for our climate because this is the only home we’ll ever know. It’s where we’re all forever… Earthbound.”