“What gives you hope? This is a question I’m often asked these days. And what I’ve come to realize is that being hopeful, in the face of so much bad news about climate change, is not something that just happens — at least not to me. It’s not a passive process, but an active one. Hope isn’t something I have, it’s something I have to go out and find.”
These were the opening lines of a speech I delivered at the Momentum for Change awards ceremony in Doha last Tuesday, which celebrated innovative work on the ground to address climate change. But now that this year’s climate conference is over, driven nearly to the brink of collapse by a process awash with OPEC influence, they bear repeating.
To be clear, we are still barreling down the highway to a dangerously warming world. Nothing happened in Doha which could even remotely be thought of as hitting the brakes, and the US was roundly criticised for blocking key agreements despite President Obama’s election night hint of a new-found sense of urgency.. But in the wee hours of the final night’s negotiations, as prospects for an outcome were looking grim, I asked a number of seasoned delegates whether they found any reason to be optimistic about the future as a result of their time in Doha.
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