I follow climate science closely enough that I expect the coming decade, the 2020s, will witness upheaval of the global systems we have come to accept as norms. By the time 2030 rolls around you might not recognize the place.
One of the first norms to fall will be global human rights. That's already underway.
Climate change is not only having a devastating impact on the environments we live in, but also on respect for human rights globally, the UN has warned.
The UN rights chief, Michelle Bachelet, cited the civil wars sparked by a warming planet and the plight of indigenous people in an Amazon ravaged by wildfires and rampant deforestation.
“The world has never seen a threat to human rights of this scope,” she told the UN human rights council in Geneva.
“The economies of all nations, the institutional, political, social and cultural fabric of every state, and the rights of all your people, and future generations, will be impacted” by climate change, she warned.
What are we going to do about it? In a word, "nothing." We will treat this as a problem for other people in other places. By the time we discover that no country gets a pass it may well be too late. There are things we could be doing to bolster our human rights resilience beginning with badly overdue democratic restoration but that doesn't seem to be a priority for any of the parties apt to form our next government. As far as revisiting Canada's role in the world that's now mainly a function of tweaking trade deals.
Maybe when Dominic Barton has finished sorting out the Chinese he'll be able to devote more time to the global effort.
When do you imagine Barton will be ready for a new job?
My guess is that he will be ready when through his new position he will have acquired the additional knowledge and made the elusive interpersonal connections at the highest levels in the Chinese government and state-owned enterprises that together will enable him better to assist global management consulting firms in adapting their operations to the Chinese model. But it's not exactly a "new job".
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