Sunday, February 04, 2007

Inconvenient truth or dare

Tess and I watched Al Gore's film about global warming (An Inconvenient Truth) last night. I have to admit that I wasn't too keen on seeing it at first. It's not that I don't believe global warming is a problem, I just didn't want the buzz kill on my world view that we are all doomed.

I was wrong. The movie does tell us that there is indeed a dire problem facing us, not centuries away, but mere decades. That is a sobering fact. But it tells us something I didn't expect. Global Warming can be stopped. It isn't a conundrum. Scientists know the solution. The solution is us.

The film points out that we can all make a difference by doing little things to reduce the amount of CO2 we contribute to the atmosphere. It can be as simple as recycling, driving less, maintaining your car or choosing a more fuel efficient mode.

I toyed with deleting this post because it's not what I normally write about. I hate preaching and I hate regurgitating politics and current affairs. That is what the evening news is for. But at the very least perhaps this post will encourage someone to watch An Inconvenient Truth. Even if you don't change or reinforce your beliefs about global warming, you might discover that Al Gore is a pretty smart and funny guy.


Whitesnake said...

And those in power keep saying yeah yeah yeah and we keep kicking up a fuss.

But to be honest, If coutries like the USA and China and India aren't going to cut back or cut out the carbon emmisions being that they are the greatest contributors then what we lesser contributors do seems pointless.

From here it is like we are doing our bit but the main culprits are saying up yours.

Kindness said...

i have yet to see the movie but it is on my netflix queque. i personally try to do what I can to reduce and offset my carbon footprint but i have no control over what others decide they will or will not do.

Time said...

Whitesnake, You are right. The USA is the #1 contributor to CO2 that causes Global Warming. Gore makes the point in his film that Global Warming is a moral issue, not a scientific one. People can't keep saying it is up to someone else to do something. It is up to everyone to do something.

The movie is worth seeing. We saw it in part because one of our local school district's board had attempted to ban it being shown in school's unless opposing viewpoints were presented along with it. I think it is great that you do what you can do to reduce your carbon footprint. And I don't think we could force anyone to do their part, but we can at least try to help them be aware.

Hayden said...

thanks for posting this, Tim. Yesterday I saw a man bicycling to work with a placard on his bike: bicycling to fight global warming.

Whitesnake, I think it's important to notice that the USA isn't monolithic. California sports the worlds 6th or 7th largest economy, and has often passed legislation that becomes a coalition of the willing (states), and then the Fed is forced to act. It's happened before with fuel efficiency, and it's happening again right now with Global Warming.

If you listen only to Bush, instead of what the cities and states are doing without him, you'll miss the real story. California is in court right now battling against the Feds to preserve our newly passed law limiting carbon emissions from cars. Chances are excellent that we'll win. If we do, there are 7 or 8 states that have already declared they'll adopt the new standards.

Right now the SF board of supes is debating how far they can push local building regulations to REQUIRE green building practices.

Here in my tiny town of 4000 people if I decide to tear down my house and rebuild, I have to have city approval on my plans for recycling the remains of the old house.

The US has always been a nation of grass-roots movements, and we're at it again.

Naughti Biscotti said...

I've avoided seeing "An Inconveinient Truth" for the same reasons you stated. I didn't really want to be depressed with yet another doom and gloom "we're all dying and going to hell" message. You've convinced me. I'll definately add it to my netflix.

Thanks for educating me on California Hayden. I don't stay up on all the latest politics but it sure is nice to see that our state is doing more than surfing and smoking pot ;-)

And... yet another reason for me to LOVE my new car. It's more fuel efficient than my van and being new it meets all the requirements for low emissions. Whooo hooo!!!

Time said...

Shandi, If nothing else, the movie will make you wonder what would have happened if Gore had won that fateful election and become president. Congratulations again on the Jeep. Did you ever get your souvenir from the van?

Naughti Biscotti said...

Nah, I decided not to. I was afraid that the insurance company would then consider that "damaging property" that now belonged to them. I'm trying to move one.

Anonymous said...

Gore DID win the election.

Time said...


Yeah, I know, but let's not get hung up on the truth here.

Footpad said...

Um, don't we already know what would have happened if Gore had won the election?

-- f

R. said...

Nuclear power.

Worried about waste? After the material is no longer fissionable, there are a couple of patents for batteries that generate electricity from waste without fission or fusion by using electrons excited by radioactive particles running into metal atoms. Basically these batteries are a big coil of copper with a bunch of radioactive material packed around it.

Yucca mountain is a joke. They should have built a bunch of banks of these nuclear batteries, run high tension power lines down into the tunnels and viola' no more rolling blackouts for California.

I agree that this is a societal problem (read leadership that does not serve a noble purpose besides self-aggrandizement) and not a technological problem.

Time said...

FP, Yes we do. If only it was so.

R. Channel that brilliance into money to support your poor uncle in his old age.