Several things have been going on this year that should make politicians pause and reflect on what a climate emergency means - and take action to stop it.
The extent of the Arctic sea ice this July is the second lowest on record (for the month of July).
A huge iceberg roughly the size of Manhattan has just broken off Greenland's Petermann glacier and will soon drift down Nares Strait - an event Greenpeace warned was very likely to happen.
A large part of the Asian continent is facing unprecedented heat waves.
In Russia, this heat wave is partly responsible for unprecendented forest fires that have been chocking the capital, Moscow. It is estimated that about one fifth of the wheat of the country has died due to lack of water.
Despite all the talk about extreme snow-storms in North America and Western Europe, January 2010 was the 4th warmest on record planet-wide according to the US National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration. March was the warmest in recorded history. So was April. So was May. So was June. The results for July aren't in yet.
Individually, none of these events mean anything regarding the overall climate of our planet - just like the snow storms of the beginning of the year didn't mean anything, taken out of context. There will always be extreme weather events, no matter what we do. All together, however, they correspond to the projections of climate scientists regarding the evolution of temperatures.
Now, let's consider other events that have been happening lately:
In the US, the largest accidental oil spill in history has been wrecking the beaches of Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama, as well as the local fisheries - and while the extent of the damage on the wildlife isn't fully understood yet, predictions are bleak.
We're finding evidence that fossil fuels are receiving more subsidies worldwide than renewable energy, despite huge profits, and while using the atmosphere (and now the Gulf of Mexico) as a sewer.
In the meantime, Greenpeace has demonstrated that it is not only possible to power ourselves with renewable energy that doesn't cause all this damage, but we calculated that we could create 8 million green jobs while doing so.
With all the evidence above, I am astounded that Parliaments and Congresses worldwide aren't meeting in emergency to make plans to stop our fossil fuel addiction and promote renewables, but that is exactly what is happening. In fact, in the US, Congress is not going to look at a clean energy bill at all this year.
What does this tell me? It tells me that more than ever, we need individuals - people like you - to take charge, and demand that change. Demand an energy revolution. Write to your local representative. Ask why, in the face of all the evidence, your country isn't doing more to stop our fossil fuel addiction. Tell your friends and families to do the same. Join the 10/10/10 global work party and start working on solutions with us.
TAKE ACTION: Sign the Energy [R]evolution pledge.
Photo: Petermann Glacier in Greenland. © Nick Cobbing / Greenpeace