John Kerry, The U.S. Secretary of State, visited Indonesia on Sunday, after a visit to China on Friday. He urged the country to help in the fight against global climate change, citing losing resources as a major motivating factor for their government.
He warned that their countries economy could be severally damaged if climate change continues to spiral out of control. One of the most pressing issues facing the Indonesian people and their government is rising ocean temperatures, which if it continues could severally cripple their fishing industry because it would significantly impact the health of the fish in this region.
He also said that this region of the globe is on the “front lines” in the fight against climate change. Kerry added to those gathered, in particularly frank language, “It’s not an exaggeration to say to you that your entire way of life that you live and love is at risk.”
This speech is another mark in the secretary’s tenure as Secretary of State which shows that he is devoted to making climate change a top priority. Reports have surfaced that he would like to be the lead broker at the 2015 United Nations treaty which will strive to commit the leading economies around the world to sign on to take significant steps aimed toward cutting carbon emissions around the world.
For the last couple of years now Asian countries, including China, and India have been fighting to get America to shoulder the vast majority of the economic load needed to lower carbon emissions in these countries. They say that because America is still the world’s largest economy they should have to be responsible for helping financially.
Until only recently, the United States was also the country with the most greenhouse gas emissions. America was surpassed by China and other countries in the Asian region are expected to continue to rise their total out put of greenhouse gases over the next couple decades. This increase will mostly be attributed to the growing amount of workers in these areas who will be able to drive automobiles and receive electric power in their homes.
Indonesia, the third highest contributor to greenhouse gas emissions, is a major polluter because deforestation is the largest part of that countries economy. Indonesia is also expected to start providing electricity and could powered energy sources to more and more of its countries population which will also increase their emissions.
Secretary Kerry’s speech was given in Jakarta and was sponsored by the U.S. Embassy as a part of a series of speeches given by the secretary aimed at third world countries. The speech was also transmitted in areas on the islands Sumatra and Borneo. Although Kerry never outlined any particular steps that Indonesia should take he did call global climate change, “perhaps the world’s most fearsome weapon of mass destruction.
In Indonesia the major concern is that warmer water could become more acidic and reduce the population of Indonesian fish caught and able to be sold by 40 percent. They could also lose considerable coast line all of which is why Kerry urged them on Sunday to take part and help out in the global fight against climate change.
By Nick Manai