Oz Blog News Commentary

The crime of ecocide

September 9, 2019 - 09:38 -- Admin

The International
Criminal Court (ICC) is an intergovernmental organisation and international
tribunal that sits in The Hague, in the Netherlands. The ICC has jurisdiction
to prosecute individuals for the international crimes of genocide, crimes
against humanity, war crimes and crimes of aggression. It is intended to
complement existing national judicial systems and therefore exercises its
jurisdiction only when certain conditions are met, such as when national courts
are unwilling or unable to prosecute criminals or when the United Nations
Security Council or individual states refer situations to the Court1.

The most recent draft Intergovernmental
Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report into the oceans and the cryosphere (the frozen
parts of the planet), which is due to be released on the 25th of
September warns that if we do not dramatically alter the way we produce and
consume almost everything, then there may be a dramatic decline in fish stocks,
a hundred-fold increase in damage caused by superstorms, and the displacement
of more than a quarter of a billion people by rising sea levels2.
These destructive changes have already been set in motion and many are
irreversible3. The most dangerous are the positive feedbacks:
melting of the permafrost will release carbon dioxide and methane which will
reinforce the heating of the planet4. It is now likely that the Earth
will be heated by another 2-3 degrees C by the end of the century, and it is possible
that it may be heated much more, much sooner, if these feedbacks operate faster
than expected; perhaps by as much as 8 degrees C5.

Humanity could have
perhaps done something to mitigate these dire consequences if we had acted when
the first IPCC report came out some 30 years ago6, but we didn’t.
That is when the denialism industry kicked into gear, and all sorts of
manufactured doubt as to the veracity of the science was promulgated by fossil
fuel companies and their supporters, in much the same way as the tobacco
industry did when the link between smoking and lung cancer was established. The
worst transgressions were by many of our politicians who, despite having the
scientific expertise of the nation at their beck and call, did nothing, because
those fossil fuel companies and their supporters donated large amounts of money
to their political parties. It is often said that you should never stand
between a politician and a bag of money, in the expectation that you will be
pushed out of the way or trampled on. However, these politicians and their
mouthpieces have not simply trampled on individuals to get to the money, they
have, at best, seriously endangered the survival of this nation, just to keep
their donations up. It is unfortunate that the crime of treason only applies to
assisting an enemy of the nation during a shooting war6. The damage
done by these deniers far outweighs the damage any group of traitors could do
to the nation by aiding an enemy. In the latter case, the nation could be
overrun, thousands could die, but the land and its biota, and the surrounding
oceans and their biota would likely survive. This is not the case now. The
future that my children aspired to when they were asked by their schoolteachers,
friends and relatives is in deep jeopardy; that of my children’s children will
likely be very difficult. This is all because of venal politicians who denied
the science to pad out their wallets. If they had been caught accepting money
from common criminals to allow the latter to rob or murder someone, they would
be held accountable. However, they have been doing much the same, but those
that suffer will likely run into the hundreds of millions. That disastrous
future is not only restricted to the human occupants of parts of this planet,
but the rest of the biota as well. We are now in the middle of an extinction
event which may rival that of one or other of the big five events of the
geological past. This is the crime of ecocide; the decimation of the ecosystem
which supports us. While it is not the same as direct genocide, buy attempting to
wipe out a people by bomb gun or concentration camp, the result will be the
same. That is criminal, and these deniers should pay dearly for it.

In Australia, the
individuals and organisations listed below have denied climate science. They
have actively campaigned against doing anything to mitigate the effects of climate
change. For a proportion of them, that is because they are mindless drones who
have little understanding of reality, let alone science. But for most of them,
it is because they have a vested interest in doing nothing; they or their associated
political parties get donations from the fossil fuel industry or denialist
organisations. Reference to the International Criminal Court is warranted to
test their complicity in the disaster that is likely to befall humanity and
this planet.

Individuals: Eric Abetz, Tony Abbott, Kevin Andrews, Cory Bernardi, Brian Burston, David
Bushby, Ross Cameron, Matt Canavan, Michaelia Cash, George Christensen, Rowan
Dean, Jonathan Duniam, Concetta Fierravanti-Wells, Pauline Hanson, Alex Hawke, Alan
Jones, Barnaby Joyce, Bob Katter. Craig Kelly, David Leyonhjelm, Ian Macdonald,
Nick Minchin, Scott Morrison, Fiona Nash, Ken O’Dowd, Barry O’Sullivan, Stephen
Parry, Tony Pasin, James Paterson, Ian Plimer, Malcolm Roberts, Ann Sudmalis, Tom
Switzer, Angus Taylor, Tim Wilson.

Organisations: New South Wales Branch of the National Party, Institute
of Public Affairs, One Nation, News Limited, Business Council of Australia, Minerals
Council, Sky News Australia, 2GB.

PS: Any further
nominations will be added as long as documentation (e.g. quotes, writings,
membership of denialist organisations) of climate change denial is given.



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