POLLUTION: Action is needed to try to save planet

My address/telephone number book has just had another name marked as ‘passed on’, a contemporary of mine.

He gave a great deal of his time to voluntary work, including our missions to avoid further carbon pollution of the UK’s land, water and air, thus saving the planet.

We believe the media has been full of efforts and conclusions by nearly 200 countries taking part in the great conference in Paris, and such volunteers will be greatly encouraged by the final deal, without us being sure that the ambitions will be achieved as fully and as quickly as intended.

If there is the will to achieve the targets of the UN’s conference, we can hope substantial achievements will take place, but we all must ensure no back-biting takes place as time passes.

There has been, for decades now, the recognition by some that our use of the planet’s resources is a total error of judgement.

Millions of tonnes of carbon fuels and carbon-filled wastes have been burned without much cleaning of their emissions, the cleaning avoided by the UK for hundreds of years.

At present China, with a population of about 20 million-plus, has to support its population like everybody else.

China, India and others are being told by the West that they need to avoid the errors of the West, which did not know any better at the time, but can advise the whole world, if they wish to listen.

The offer of $100bn a year to poorer countries is an investment in survival, although I see commentators say it’s not enough, and who pays anyway?

However, if faced with the alternative of one world or none, even those of us with limited time left must do our best.

There are people who wish to avoid thinking about the great carbon dioxide issue, and others who deny there is any such danger.

I and other green environmentalists think they know better, of course.

AM Johnson