A lifetime of climate change – Knowable Magazine

by | May 13, 2022 | Climate Change

Researcher Arun Agrawal has lived three decades on either side of a watershed: the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, signed 30 years ago this June. His 60 years are a window into how far we have come, and how far there is to go.Arun Agrawal remembers only one toy from his childhood in 1960s Bihar, India: a little wooden cart with a tiny leather-and-stone drum that made a tuck-tuck noise when he pulled it around on a string. “I never felt I lacked for anything,” he says. “But when I became a teenager, I realized that we didn’t have a television, we never went out for meals. We lived a lifestyle that was…” — he pauses to search for the right phrase — “…  less materially full than many of my friends that I met in school and then in college.” Things have changed — for Arun, India and the world. The relative simplicity of Arun’s middle-income childhood was a product of both India’s strict trade controls and a familial attitude of making do with less. But India’s economy opened up in the 1980s and 1990s; its skyrocketing population gained wealth and ever more stuff. Arun grew up, got a TV, became a researcher, moved to the …

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