Climate change: a threat to world economy

Botswana’s economy could take a major hit in the next decade due to the destructive impacts of global warming, such as rising sea levels to more fierce natural disasters.

According to the Vice President of Education International (EI) Mugwena Maluleke, there is increasing concern that some areas currently home to many people could become uninhabitable within a few decades.

Maluleke was the guest speaker at the Botswana Sectors of Educators Trade Union (BOSETU) Ordinary Conference in Palapye recently.

Maluleke, who is also South African Democratic Teachers Union (SADTU)’s General Secretary, revealed the estimates range from a small, positive impact on GDP to a potential loss of nearly 20 percent.

“Almost all studies show climate change as negatively impacting the economy. This shows that climate change is likely to have significant negative effects on the economy that becomes worse as the temperature rises,” he warned. The Unionist, who was unanimously elected as the EI Vice-President during its 7th World Congress held in Ottawa, Canada in 2015 – a position he retained at the 8th edition in Bangkok, Thailand earlier this year – said the impacts of global warming come from a variety of sources.

“These include productivity losses, rising sea levels, increased coastal storms, increased cooling costs, impacts on human mortality and adaptation costs.”

To combat this, Maluleke revealed the EI is convening a high-level event to declare a climate emergency in education.

From the event, he said there should be a commitment to ensure that all students learn about climate change and sustainable development.

“We have to combat global warming because there’ll be no employment in a dead planet. When the planet is finally destroyed, nothing will survive!”

highlighted the bespectacled South African.

The Vice President further warned that the world could face another possible recession because of the trade dispute between United States of America and China.

He added that the rise of Prime Minister, Boris Johnson in Britain means the Brexit advocates are willing to leave the European Union (EU) without a deal.

In turn, he believes this means they are cheering the possibility of shortages of medicine and increased border queues, which will have a negative impact on the economy.

Maluleke stressed something needs to be done to heal a planet ‘torched and abused’ by multinational companies.

He declared that the ‘stagnating’ global economy needs rebuilding as it is shedding jobs and creating resentment and hopelessness.

“What’s to be done rewiring policy makers in the call for the creation of decent jobs and making business to be responsible to the environment?” asked Maluleke.

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