Seven errors in the challenge of climate change

Walter Longo
Grey, São Paulo

In this provocative article, Walter Longo challenges the conventional ideas that dominate the sustainability debate, arguing that the debate is too focused on present capabilities. A more imaginative examination of future technological and behavioural innovations provides more promising solutions.

Imagine the year is now 2019. I challenge the reader to consider the following questions about global climate change.

  1. Do you think that we will have succeeded by 2019 in reversing the tendency of global warming?
  2. Do we think that climate change is perceived as something really serious?
  3. Do we think that the socio-economic changes proposed as solutions are actually feasible?

If you have answered 'no' to these three questions, I invite you to continue reading. Organisations and individuals have been making huge efforts to be more and more sustainable: recycling waste, saving water and electricity, prioritising the acquisition of 'green' inputs, investing in initiatives to promote biodiversity and so on. They try but they don't get anywhere.