Tuesday, July 10, 2007

A Climate in Crisis

The environment is a hot button issue and it seems that everyone is talking about it yet I don't feel educated enough on the topic. Why do I feel like I know so little? Does turning off the lights when I leave a room do enough to reverse all the damage that has been done to the Earth?

It's become cool to be green. Celebrities are getting in on the action. Just this past weekend Live Earth helped raise awareness. These concerts encouraged us to do little things in our daily life to help our environment. I learned that I should be unplugging my cell phone charger when I am not using it. Previously I thought that it only was using energy when I plugged my phone into it.

The Industrial Revolution changed the way we live. Daily life from a hundred years ago has changed drastically. The population grew. Culture changed. The Me generation felt a sense of entitlement. Society consumed and everyone seemed to be in on a materialistic race with the pursuit of leisure. We have joined the fast lane, in search of convenience and too often our society goes the disposable route.

What we didn't realize is that we've been at war with Mother Nature. We are poisoning her. Sure she retaliates by unleashing bigger storms but we are killing her. With us winning this unknowing war, we all lose.

How is this going to affect us? What's going to happen to the earth because of how we have been living? What is it going to take to reverse the damage? Is this even a reality? Do we have a one way ticket for destruction? I want real answers. I decided to rent An Inconvenient Truth to try to educate myself with some facts.

* 10 of the hottest years on record have all been within the last 14 years, with 2005 being the hottest.

* The world has been inflicted with 30 new diseases in the last quarter century.

* Stronger and more Hurricanes, Cyclones and Typhoons have been reported within the last thirty years.

* With the loss of shelf ice in Greenland and Antarctica, global sea levels could rise by 20 feet causing 100 million people along coastlines to be displaced.

* More than a million species could be driven to extinction by 2050.

What things should I be doing? Can we educate ourselves to live better to effect real change? What kind of legacy are we leaving if the gradual changes do not get us to react?

There are more questions than answers here and that is why I propose that this be the issue that we band together and try to make real change. We need to now before the consequences of our actions are worse. Every day more carbon dioxide is added to our environment. This is the world we share. Let's hope. Let's act.

11 Singing the blues:

kgirl said...

yup, scary shit. we are all responsible.

We do not inherit the earth from our parents. We borrow it from our children.

time to smarten up.

kittenpie said...

So true. We are so about convenience, yet the result is anything but convenient. I actually kind of like Toronto's new garbage plan because it forces us to think a little more about how much garbage we want to pay for. It's been easy to ignore for so long with people just removing it for us without question.

MotherBumper said...

Scary stuff. And unfortunately true. Excellent post SBB. I agree - let's act NOW!

eredux said...

Check out this US Carbon Footprint Map, an interactive United States Carbon Footprint Map, illustrating Greenest States. This site has all sorts of stats on individual State energy consumptions, demographics and State energy offices.

http://www.eredux.com/states/

chelle said...

Dude the more I learn the more I try to make less of an impact. Tough in todays society of go go go go go.

Andrea said...

Awesome post. Really. This is one of my hot button issues, too. I don't want to leave a trash heap for my kids to have to fix in my wake. And I want to teach them environmental responsibility as well.

L.A. Daddy said...

I'm gathering a "Things we can do" list for my blog. I'll probably post it sometime next week. It's scary stuff.

mamatulip said...

After reading this I'm thinking maybe the environment is a great cause to focus on...I've been so torn on what one cause we should focus on. Excellent post, SB.

Sandra said...

I am with you on this. 100%. Great post. Even greater photo!

Jodi said...

we definitely need to talk about this... i saw al gore and that certainly opened my eyes. there are so many things we can do that aren't difficult at all.

Heather said...

It can be so hard to know what to do. Every time you think you learn "X is the right thing to do," then you hear about a complicating factor that makes you wonder if you should be doing Y instead. I just try to find little ways to improve my affect on the earth, one day at a time. If I try to look at the whole thing it'll seem so big that it'll seem hopeless, and that'll just make it harder to do something about it.