Mary Robinson delivered the annual Ralph Miliband Programme Lecture at the London School of Economics on Thursday 18 January titled Turbulent Climate Change Shows the Need to Address Injustice.
The Programme’s 2018 theme of Turbulent Times aims to explore some of the dramatic and often unexpected political and social changes that are currently taking place, and which leave many people feeling like we are living through a period in which history has ‘sped up’. Mary Robinson spoke about how climate justice is the antithesis to growing inequality and the rise of populism arguing that “the existential threat of climate change confronts us with our shared interdependence. I believe that there is an increasing awareness of our role as global citizens in the face of climate change”.
Mary Robinson emphasised the need for innovative policy development that is underpinned by intergenerational equity in order to ensure sustainable development saying that “the task of protecting future generations must start with ensuring fairness and equality in the current one. We will not succeed in fighting climate change and securing a safer world for future generations without first ensuring that the dignity and rights of all people alive today are respected and protected. Advancing climate justice means ensuring that present generations can enjoy the full realisation of their rights while safeguarding the earth’s resources for future generations.”
The Ralph Miliband Programme is one of the LSE’s most prestigious lecture series, receiving attention not only at the LSE but across London, the UK, and globally. It has hosted numerous internationally renowned scholars, along with Nobel laureates, eminent writers, and major public figures. The programme was set up in 1996 thanks to a generous anonymous benefaction from a former PhD student inspired by ‘Ralph Miliband’s contribution to social thought’.