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Will 2013 be the year we finally address climate change?

As Hurricane Sandy bore down on the East Coast in late October, everyone from Bill McKibben to Andrew Cuomo declared the storm our wake-up call on climate change. Now we would finally have that serious conversation we’d been meaning to get around to; faced with apocalyptic images of flooded subways and decimated houses, we would be shocked out of complacency and into action. Damian Carrington’s column in the Guardian was typical:

If Sandy – and this summer’s record US heat wave – end up blowing Obama back into the White House with enough wind in his sails to persuade him to make climate change a winning issue, it really could have positive global consequences. If not, I shudder to think what scale of apocalyptic disaster will be needed to destroy the political cowardice among world leaders that is stoking the ever greater climate change storms of the future.

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