Some important pieces of news about global climate change have come out in the last week. A few of the high points:
- Antarctica and its surrounding seas, where animals, like emperor penguins, are especially sensitive to temperature change, turns out to be warming as anticipated by climate models, not cooling as industry PR campaigns have been claiming.
- A new study concludes that the climatic effects of carbon dioxide emissions are likely not to go away for thousands of years – even if humans were to stop emitting all CO2 right now.
- Global warming is likely to expand and make permanent oceanic dead zones where fish cannot live.
The most important thing to remember about climate change is, in fact, not news at all: It may too late to stop climate change, but we can act now to significantly slow it down. When I say that we can act now, I’m not talking about executive orders by the President, or legislation passed by the U.S. Congress or state legislatures, though those are important. I’m talking about what we, the everyday ordinary people can do.
It’s like Denny at Our Tomorrow says:
“For those that want to believe that we can solve this problem with technology. It is NOT going to happen that way. Sure, we can build out solar and wind power capacity and we should. But that is only part of the answer, probably the smallest part. The largest part will be the drastic conservation that we can all do RIGHT NOW without any government legislation or infrastructure change.”
In a symbolic act of conservation awareness, the Las Vegas strip will be turning off its big light displays for one hour on March 28 at 8:30 PM. It’s part of a growing international event known as Earth Hour. That hour of darkness will give people time to contemplate what they can do to reduce the energy consumption they take for granted. If the Las Vegas casinos can do it, so can you.
Furthermore, if you can turn out the lights for one hour once a year, couldn’t you do the same thing once a week, or for that matter, every evening?