In order to save the planet from global roasting, it seems entirely reasonable to ask Mr. and Mrs. Joe Peasant to subordinate their freedom of movement to an annual “carbon allowance” preventing them flying hither and yon and devastating the environment. As Dr. Rajendra Pachauri, the chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, explains:
Hotel guests should have their electricity monitored; hefty aviation taxes should be introduced to deter people from flying; and iced water in restaurants should be curtailed, the world’s leading climate scientist has told the Observer.
Rajendra Pachauri? Hey, if you’re manning the VIP lounge at Heathrow, that name may ring a bell:
Dr Rajendra Pachauri flew at least 443,243 miles on IPCC business in this 19 month period. This business included honorary degree ceremonies, a book launch and a Brookings Institute dinner, the latter involving a flight of 3500 miles.
Wow. 443,243 miles. How many flying polar bears does Dr. Pachauri kill in an average quarter? Well, not to worry, he probably offsets his record-breaking ursocide with carbon credits from carbon billionaire Al Gore.
And in any case it’s okay to devastate the planet on IPCC business — plus the occasional cricket match:
So strong is his love for cricket that his colleagues recall the time the Nobel winner took a break during a seminar in New York and flew in to Delhi over the weekend to attend a practice session for a match before flying back. Again, he flew in for a day, just to play that match.
And why not? Aside from a slight increase in the risk of polar bears dropping from the skies onto stray Indian bowlers and wicket-keepers, where’s the harm?
P.S. I like the headline on Dr. Pachauri’s climate’n'cricket story: “Heat On Cricket Pitch Warms This Climate Change Laureate.” If you’re waiting for some journalist to ask him about the contradictions between his lifestyle and the one he wants the rest of us to submit to, that sound you hear is cricketers chirping.