I can't feel my toes.

on 4:23 pm

In line with current Summit on climate change in Copenhagen, it appears that in the next few days a cold spell is going to pass through Portugal, and temperatures are expected to drop below zero! With next Monday being one of the coldest days of the year. This motivated a communiqué from Civil Protection, warning residents to be careful with ice formation on roads.

This reminds me of how blessed we (residents in Portugal) are with the weather here.

Since about 90% of national territory has no snowfall, and therefore there is no need to salt the roads. For this reason you see cars without a spot of rust, and many 30 and 40 year old cars in pristine condition on the roads. During the day, when it’s sunny out, you can actually hang outside with friends, or take a walk downtown without worrying about frostbite. No ice or snow on the roads theoretically means fewer accidents (Portugal, despite having little to no snow, is one of the most accident prone countries in Europe). Energy bills are much lower since heaters are not needed (I actually have my windows open while typing this, it’s about 18C now).

The other side of the coin is that people here don’t know what they’re missing by not having snow. Making snowmen and snow angles, tobogganing, snow fights, soaked snow pants and snow days are all fond memories of Canadian children. Sure you'd throw out your back shovelling snow, see your car rust away to nothing due to salt, rarely savour sunshine, and lose a finger or two to sub-zero temperatures, but all that is a small price to pay for the sight of a magical white blanket of cold fluff covering everything in the morning after a snowstorm, and all that’s associated with it.

On the issue of climate change; what can I say? I truly hope something is done, since it is an issue that affects us all.

But I doubt that the developing countries are willing to abdicate their own economic development in order to benefit the climate. After all, the current industrialized countries were able to expand and develop without any checks or limits with regards to CO2 or other greenhouse gas emissions, so why should currently developing countries be subject to limitations? Equal opportunities and all that... Well, let’s see what happens.

Anyhow, don’t forget to bundle up!


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