tv Interview - Earth remains the blue jewel in space. Deutsche Welle October 22, 2017 9:02am-9:16am CEST
and on wednesday portugal's interior minister resigned over the government's handling of the crisis. its one formation day w. will have programs around the clock marking its five hundredth anniversary we're going live to the commemoration ceremony in vietnam back so far will be documentaries magazines and talk shows focusing on luther and the groundbreaking events he helped set in motion so. reformation day october thirty first w. . today i'll be talking with one of germany's most respected climate researchers professor much. welcome to the d.w.
interview. thanks for joining us today i'm thomas on. weather forecasters often make predictions that don't turn out correctly you recently said that president trump will change his mind about climate change only after a storm of public proportions hits the u.s. . has now happened has the president changed his mind. unfortunately he has not i had hoped that he would realize what's going on. come to the conclusion that he doesn't listen to the advice of others. i don't think he'll ever change his mind. we see the sort of ignorance about climate change not only in the us but also in germany former chancellor helmut schmidt for example the debate over climate change is pure hysteria and schmidt
knew something about science is climate research a legitimate form of science. research is one of the physical sciences. climate models are based on physical base equations expressed through mathematics. and i meant helmut schmidt shortly before he died. did me to talk to him about this very subject but. i didn't manage to change his mind but i hope that i was at least able to make it clear to him climate change is something that must be taken seriously. as a man had something to do with the fact that our weather data is just a snapshot. a moment in time geologically speaking. because it really possible for humans to have such an influence on earth's climate. science leave the point
this snapshot the earth has experienced ice ages and warm periods but these developed over many thousands of years. that's what we're seeing right now is unprecedented temperatures have risen one full degree in one hundred years and that's a lot. this is not a natural occurrence they have also been rapid changes in the atmosphere because greenhouse gases. we haven't seen levels like this for at least one million years. then there's nothing we explain to people like president trump climate change is all about. put simply means that the earth is warming up i think all of us at least older folks like you and i notice that it is getting warmer we can also detect rising sea levels. this is happening right now
those levels have risen by an average of twenty centimeters worldwide. in the arctic the northern polar region the ice is melting at a remarkable speed. extreme weather is occurring more and more around the world. and that includes here in germany that. despite all this the u.s. still wants to pull out of the paris climate agree about. the impact will it have on climate change. after all the us creates a lot of air pollution. we're at a standstill right now on climate protection. i hope that president just one term and he will not have had much influence on this. that is a president. could then come back into play by default worldwide emissions are the key the largest producers of c o two are in china and the us.
china alone creates nearly thirty percent of the total. we're all in the same boat when it comes to climate. but regardless of where the c o two is produced it has a global effect because it stays in the atmosphere for a long time. in the loft but if you know you mentioned china it is moving away from fossil fuels and it is now a global leader in solar energy so why does china have such an impact on climate change. the question is whether china will follow the path that we have taken in europe. will they carry out their industrialization program by using fossil fuels. will they skip a phase of that program directly from coal fired plants to renewable sources of
energy i think this is i certainly hope that this will happen not only in china but worldwide also hoff well this is the thing he had been identified. germany still needs to do some work on that transition we reduce our role as leaders and international climate protection but we still produce fifty two percent of our energy from fossil fuels like coal and gas. are we just deceiving ourselves yeah absolutely absolutely we are deceiving ourselves germany is claiming to be a leader in international climate protection and that was the case. not to reunification we were fortunate to be able to replace outdated eastern technology with modern technology but over the last decade we really haven't made much progress. in the first half of two thousand and seventeen greenhouse gas emissions in germany actually rose so we're not much of a leader anymore. i think it's important for the government to play
a more active role in developing climate protection policy and it didn't happen yeah i think so because business and proper climate and environmental policy go hand in hand. i believe more and more people have come to this conclusion but we still have a way to go. but we are making progress even in the u.s. . but i believe that at some point no one knows exactly when there's going to be a boom in alternative energy and things will start moving quickly. that no one predicted the rise of the smart and look where we are today. even if we do take a stronger international stand against climate change we're still going to have to live with the damage that's been done. to this point specific threats to we face
and how can we protect ourselves. you know the short term there's nothing we can do the climate will continue to react to the greenhouse gases that we've produced over . in the last few decades we'll see some improvement in the decades to come back the earth will keep getting warmer sea levels will continue to rise and there will be more examples of extreme weather. where will the sea levels right here be in twenty years would we be sitting in the water. yet we've seen a rise of about twenty centimeters since the start of the twentieth century. right now the levels are rising at the rate of about three millimeters per year. so over ten years that would be three centimeters more. but it could also happen. in twenty years we could see an increase of perhaps ten centimeters. he said and
some might say the three millimeters here is just a small amount that's not that bad a lot of people don't seem to be bothered by these kinds of predictions you know i think often what that this is that it's a big problem you can't always see the effects of these threats people who live in coastal areas or on some islands can see. those low lying islands in the south pacific or areas like bangladesh or even miami and florida. i rising sea levels are causing a lot of trouble in miami spending millions to protect their property. and bought a lot of them still don't want to mention the words climate change that. is widespread ignorance on this topic and some interest groups may be dragging their feet. mention the indian sub continent that's where your family is from your
parents moved from pakistan to however good one nine hundred fifty four your father was and a mom and built a mosque there. when you were growing up and were thinking about a career was climate research your first choice yes. i did want to do something that involves science but after i graduated high school my parents said i should choose a career that would pay well so i studied economics and i soon discovered that i was not to be an economist so i switched to studying science. and that such decision that i've never regretted. it we have some seagulls. i'm sure that just delighted to see us. but like i said i've never regretted my choice of career. i'm passionate about this kind of research is my hobby so it doesn't seem like work to me at all. but it seems that internationally
speaking many people are ignorant about the effects of climate change as you've described them. if you could stand on the moon and watch the earth rise would you be concerned about what you'd see the dust and i think home. you know there's still a beautiful place it's a blue jewel in space and it will always be. if you look at the from the moon it will always be beautiful so the question is not wants going to happen to the earth . it was going to happen to people because their living conditions will worsen dramatically but man is used to dealing with catastrophes and it will deal with this one too that. really doesn't care whether we humans survive on not. and i think that in fact professor to round off our interview we ask our guests to
complete three sentences here's number one. despite the threats posed by climate change i'm still optimistic because. i. value. because i have experienced things in my life that i never would have thought possible i. mention and then sometimes people have to be forced to change their behavior i think that's. unfortunate but that's how people love them and. i think the chances of seeing palm trees here on the coast in twenty years time our . climate doesn't change that finalist it would be like tif thank you my pleasure. welcome to what reagan that he sat on in the i can't tell you about it business. women's talk w.
. smart women. talks we. call it smart station you'll find out what it's like w. me. hijacking the news. where i come from the news is being hijacked journalism itself has become a scripted reality show it's not just good versus evil us versus them black and white. in countries like russia china turkey people are told it's that simple and if you're a journalist there and you try to get beyond that you are facing scare tactics intimidation. and i wonder is that where we're headed as well. my responsibility as a journalist is to get beyond the smoke and mirrors it's not just about being fair and balanced or being neutral it's about being true. when he was born golf and i work in the deli.