Last year, I stumbled upon a speech by Vijay Prashard that I resonated with. In the video, Prashard criticizes the West for holding developing countries such as India and China responsible for significantly contributing to climate change, when the root of the issue stems from historical and economic factors such as the aftermath of colonialism on a post-colonial India and outsourcing of unsustainable manufacturing to countries such as China. I also think that calling for control on carbon emissions is unfair to developing countries as they may heavily depend on fossil fuels to even barely just get by or lack the infrastructure or resources to develop alternative energy sources.
Given that we live in a world where not everyone begins at the same starting point, I believe that it is important that peoples who hail from developing countries should not be pressured to be held at the same environmental standard as people who come from developed countries. I also believe that responsibility for Climate Change should be designated not just by superficial factors such as current air quality but also by addressing the causes of underlying issues such as oppression and poverty so that we can approach a world that is more just.
I envision a world where different peoples of different standings can progress at their own pace without being criticized of being indifferent about the environment when addressing ecological problems takes lower priority over simply surviving in this unforgiving world.
I believe that in order to solve this issue, we need to address the dark and persistent history of exploitation, oppression and humiliation that is inextricably connected to it. We need to call reconciliatory action and by this I don't just mean monetary reparations. We need to educate the general public and not obscure the past atrocities committed by colonial and warmongering nations that attempt to whitewash or downplay them in the present. Only then can we gain the slightest glimpse of how these people have suffered and have been deprived of a future of prosperity. Only then can we understand that not everyone stands on the same ground when it comes to climate change. Perhaps in a future where we do achieve such a feat, others can provide unconditional aid to those in need and pull them up to the same level so that we can approach a more sustainable world together.