January 26, 2015
Mankind is exposed to two mortal addictions: smoking and burning fossil energy.
In recent years Europe and other industrialised countries have started coming to grips with them while emerging countries have seen both addictions worsen.
Germany is a case in point for a successful campaign against the two plagues.
Within two decades the number of cigarettes sold has halved from 150 to 76 billion. This stunning development is attributable to civil society campaigns and a doubling of excise taxes.
People have progressively realised that smoking is mortal. Advertising for cigarettes has been prohibited. Teenagers can no longer admire their film stars smoking on the screen. Smoking has been made practically impossible within closed doors; after initial opposition from bar and restaurant owners everybody now seems happy with non- smoker establishments. Non-Smoking has become “cool”.
Something similar is happening with fossil fuels. Becoming “green” has become fashionable, and massive public financial support has reinforced this trend. […]