A modern nation can’t go all green, but it can die trying.
The forthcoming COP26 love-in will do just that, but we are all urged to chip in. Just follow the steps outlined in The Times, and you’ll acquire divine powers by preventing climate from ever changing.
Any old Tom, Dick or Harry can now go Joshua one better by gaining permanent sway over the elements. That amateur only managed to make the sun stand still for a while – but we can control its activity in perpetuity, thereby eliminating 95 per cent of the factors affecting climate.
To begin with, we must all go vegan. You see, each time a cow, sheep or pig breaks wind, it produces methane, a satanic greenhouse gas. And every attempt to make animals mind their manners has so far failed.
Thus, since we can’t eliminate livestock flatulence, eliminating flatulent livestock is the only logical solution. We should all eat nothing but plant-based food – and grow it ourselves.
A word of caution though. Growing our own pulses, especially beans, is a planet-saving idea, but careful how you consume such food.
There’s a distinct danger that people on such a diet may emit even more methane than the newly culled livestock ever did. Since culling people is an idea whose time hasn’t quite come yet, each vegetable should carry a flatulence rating.
That would educate people to the climatic perils of some produce. A diet heavy in red beans and Jerusalem artichokes, for example, is in no way preferable to tucking into a sirloin, pork chop or lamb stew.
Then we are reminded of a new planet-saving legislation, the Right to Repair Law. It obligates manufacturers of household equipment to make enough spare parts to help your toaster last for ever.
We’ve been too profligate in discarding broken appliances. We forget that, before it makes its way into our kitchen, a new toaster has to be manufactured first. And doing so produces, on average, a hell of a lot of CO2.
Also, since steel-making involves much physical effort, the likelihood of enhanced methane emissions is also high. Our planet is thus hit with a double whammy so hard it may never again pick itself up from the floor.
The Times solution is ingenious. Instead of dumping your broken toasters, kettles and dishwashers, learn to fix them. Surely you have enough spare time on your hands to take a few courses in electric repairs if it means saving the planet?
Barring that, we now have 200 repair cafés across the UK, so called because presumably you can enjoy a latte while your toaster gets a new lease on life. Take it easy on that beverage though.
Studies show that the ingredients of a latte, caffeine, milk and sugar, have a strong flatulent effect. Thus, while taking care of one problem, you may be inadvertently creating another. Perhaps you ought to have a nice glass of celery juice instead.
As you’ll doubtless be pleased to know we now have various apps for keeping track of your carbon. A useful innovation would be for the app to zap you each time you exceed your daily allowance, although care must be taken not to reach the electric chair level of 2,200 volts.
However, it shouldn’t take meticulous accounting for you to realise that every time you exhale you destroy the planet with CO2. Ideally you should stop breathing altogether, but that solution has to stay on hold until all government programmes have gathered momentum.
Meanwhile, avoid activities that make you breathe, and therefore exhale, harder. If you can’t get rid of all exercise, at least stop lifting weights. There, in addition to blowing out CO2, you also poison the planet by emitting methane (if you have to ask how, you’ve never pumped iron).
We are also encouraged to turn the heating off during cold winters. Ideally, we’d all thereby die from hypothermia and save the planet by ceasing to emit greenhouse gases.
But barring that, we can keep ourselves warm by wearing several layers of clothing indoors. There’s a catch though.
The garments can’t be made of wool or leather because the animals that produce them also produce methane. Nor can it be made of synthetic materials because they are plastics and therefore the work of the devil.
A coat of mail or any other armour is also off limits because of the CO2 and methane emissions resulting from steel-making. Perhaps we can all equip our houses with tastefully lacquered wooden boxes that can also double as… well, other useful things.
While we are on the subject of plastics, they are made of hydrocarbons. Hence every time you buy food packaged in plastic, you stick another knife into the planet’s back. Tins and glass containers are wrong too because the former are made of metal, and have you seen glassworks with their belching smokestacks?
This gets us back to the allotment in which you can grow your whole diet, from brekkie to supper. Dig up enough potatoes to keep body and soul together, shun pulses (see above for the reason) and you’ll be doing the planet a huge favour.
Yet whatever goes in must come out, which simple truth brings loo rolls into focus. Most of them are made of paper, which in turn is made of wood pulp. Wood pulp comes from trees, and when one is felled the planet dies a little.
The solution, according to The Times, comes from a product elegantly called Who Gives a Crap. It’s made of 100 per cent recycled paper and conveniently comes in batches of 48 rolls.
On second thoughts, this is a false convenience. For a huge pack of 48 Who Gives a Crap rolls has to be carried home by car – and don’t get me going on that devil’s chariot.
The Times says you must drive an electric car, but you shouldn’t buy one. Stealing one wouldn’t solve the problem because that only switches ownership from one planet murderer to another.
However, hiring an electric vehicle each time you plan to buy a pack of 48 Who Gives a Crap rolls will go a long way towards saving the planet from its death throes.
But whatever you do, don’t shop on the net. Deliveries of such purchases produce half of our CO2 emissions. And quite a bit of methane too, especially if the delivery man has to carry heavy weights up the stairs (to their credit they hardly ever do so any longer, and I thank them on behalf of the planet).
COP26 is our last chance to save ourselves, and I propose a slogan that’ll give it wings. If we all wear T-shirts saying “Fair COP, governors”, we’ll help the conference no end. Just make sure those garments are made of natural fibres.