“Today 56 newspapers in 45 countries take the unprecedented step of speaking with one voice through a common editorial. We do so because humanity faces a profound emergency,” opened the editorial in newspapers across the world this morning.
It was an effort co-ordinated by the Guardian marking the beginning of the climate summit in Copenhagen. Participating titles include two Chinese papers, India’s The Hindu, Le Monde, El Pais, Russia’s Novaya Gazeta and the Toronto Star.
“Newspapers have never done anything like this before but they have never had to cover a story like this before,” said Alan Rusbridger, editor-in-chief of the Guardian. “No individual newspaper editorial could hope to influence the outcome of Copenhagen but I hope the combined voice of 56 major papers speaking in 20 languages will remind the politicians and negotiators gathering there what is at stake – and persuade them to rise above the rivalries and inflexibility that have stood in the way of a deal.”
The editorial states:
“Unless we combine to take decisive action, climate change will ravage our planet, and with it our prosperity and security. The dangers have been becoming apparent for a generation. Now the facts have started to speak: 11 of the past 14 years have been the warmest on record, the Arctic ice-cap is melting and last year’s inflamed oil and food prices provide a foretaste of future havoc. In scientific journals the question is no longer whether humans are to blame, but how little time we have got left to limit the damage. Yet so far the world’s response has been feeble and half-hearted.”