What is the world's biggest challenge in the coming decade?

Question: What are the world's biggest challenges?

Gerry Adams: You know here we are. This is being recorded in October [2007]. I’m in New York. It’s like an august day; it’s bright summer sunshine.

In Ireland to rained every day of the summer. And yet now we have a beautiful, sunny period. But that has its negatives everywhere else in the world. So the environment is a huge, huge issue.

I keep coming back to this issue of global poverty that can be cured; that we who live in the West need to remind ourselves that we're not the world, and that we do have the ability; it’s like the great plague.

If you're reading that during the great plague by the multitudes who are dying from this disease. People elsewhere had the cure for it, but didn’t use it.

Or similarly today, that there are people in the developing world who are being crippled by foreign debt; who are being crippled by the World Bank; who are being crippled by corruption in their own places; or who are being crippled by the fact that the developed world is turning a blind eye to what is happening. What that means isn’t just that people have a hard time, but it means that people actually don’t have a life at all. And I think that’s the big, big, big challenge.

Therefore issues like global warming will affect those people. When there are floods, it’s the poor people who suffer most. Even when you got the disaster in New Orleans, it was the poor people who suffered most. It’s always the case that the poorest are the people who suffer most because they don’t have the resources, the dwellings, the ability to meet what can be what are manmade or natural disasters.


Recorded on: Oct 8, 2007

Gerry Adams fears August in October.

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