Archive for April, 2008

Polar Bear ESA Decision Court Mandated

April 30, 2008

Article by Dan Joling  AP Writer

US District Judge Claudia Wilken agreed with conservation groups that the department missed a Jan. 9 deadline for a decision. She rejected a government request for a further delay and ordered it to act by May 15.

“Defendants have been in violation of the law requiring them to publish the listing determination for nearly 120 days,” the judge, based in Oakland, Calif., wrote in a decision issued late Monday. “Other than the general complexity of finalizing the rule, Defendants offer no specific facts that would justify the delay, much less further delay.”

Allowing more time would violate the Endangered Species Act and congressional intent that time was of the essence in listing threatened species, Wilken wrote.

A spokesman for the Interior Department said Tuesday the decision was being reviewed.

“We will evaluate the legal options and will decide the appropriate course of action,” said Shane Wolfe in an e-mail statement.

The ruling is a victory for conservation groups that claim the Bush administration has delayed a polar bear decision to avoid addressing global warming and to avoid roadblocks to development such as the transfer of offshore petroleum leases in the Chukchi Sea off Alaska‘s northwest coast to oil company bidders.

“We hope that this decision marks the end of the Bush administration’s delays and denial so that immediate action may be taken to protect polar bears from extinction,” Greenpeace representative Melanie Duchin said in a statement.

A decision to list polar bears due to global warming could trigger a recovery plan with consequences beyond Alaska. Opponents fear it would subject new power plants and other development projects to federal review if they generate greenhouse gasses that add to warming in the Arctic.

Assistant Interior Secretary Lyle Laverty has said the department needed until June 30 to complete a legal and policy review of the proposed listing.

Kassie Siegel of the Center for Biological Diversity, the lead author of the petition submitted in 2005, called the judge’s order a huge victory, despite not knowing whether polar bears ultimately will be listed.

“It means that whatever political interference going on right now is going to be short-circuited,” she said. “The politicians and the bureaucrats in Washington, D.C., are going to have to stop interfering with the decision and get it out the door.”

The law requires a decision based on science, she said, and science shows the Arctic is thawing.

“The science is perfectly clear. There’s no dispute. The polar bear is an endangered species,” she said.

In response to the petition filed in 2005, the Fish and Wildlife Service proposed in December 2006 that polar bears be listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act because of the loss of their primary habitat, Arctic sea ice.

Summer sea ice shrank last year to a record low, about 1.65 million square miles in September, nearly 40 percent less ice than the long-term average between 1979 and 2000. Some climate models have predicted the Arctic will be free of summer sea ice by 2030. A U.S. Geological Survey study generated in response to the listing petition predicted polar bears in Alaska could be wiped out by 2050.

A decision on the proposed listing was due Jan. 9, but Fish and Wildlife Service Director Dale Hall said in January that a delay was needed to make sure it came in a form easily understood. He promised a decision within a month, but that deadline also passed and the Center for Biological Diversity, the Natural Resources Defense Council and Greenpeace sued in March.

___

Pew Poll on Global Warming Shows Just That, Warming With the General Public.Too Bad!

April 30, 2008
 
More stuff on Global Warming
You should read this poll
It is real frustrating for people like me
I am sure I am not alone in this frustration but I am patient on a subject where time is of the essance.
POLITICS: Climate may be warming, but public opinion stays cool (04/30/2008)
Christa Marshall, ClimateWire reporter

Americans have spoken about global warming, and their current message seems to be: “It’s serious, but we have other problems to worry about.”

Politicians beware.

The issue tied for last on a list of domestic priorities for President Bush and Congress in a 2008 survey from the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press (see table below), lagging behind the “influence of lobbyists” and “moral breakdown.” The results mirrored an April New York University poll finding that global warming had less immediacy in American minds than Medicare and Social Security.

Last week, Gallup reported that only a third of Americans worry about global warming “a great deal,” a percentage that has budged little since 1989. Less than half of the respondents in the poll indicated that climate change would pose a serious threat to them in their lifetimes, prompting Gallup’s Frank Newport to write that “there has been no consistent upward trend on worry about global warming going back for decades.”

While Americans frequently express concern about climate change when asked about it separately by pollsters, they often list the economy, crime, illegal immigration and health care higher on their anxiety lists. The lack of intensity behind global warming threatens to stifle lawmakers who hope to ride a public opinion wave to cutting greenhouse gas emissions, many analysts say.

‘Inconvenient Truth’ remains so for most

“The conventional wisdom is that media coverage and An Inconvenient Truth [former Vice President Al Gore’s documentary on global warming] changed public opinion,” said Matthew Nisbet, an assistant professor of communication at American University. “Instead, most of the impact was to intensify things for those who already care about climate change.”

Indeed, several polls reveal that the issue is highly partisan, with the gap between Democrats and Republicans higher than on other topics.

A huge dropoff in Republican support from 2007 to 2008 propelled the issue’s fall from second-to-last to the bottom of Pew’s annual survey, said Carroll Doherty, an associate director at the center. Last year, nearly twice as many Republicans, 23 percent, named global warming as a priority.

Only “providing insurance to the uninsured” ranked higher on Pew’s 2008 “partisan gap” analysis.

Gore’s association with the subject and frequent chatter on conservative talk radio and blogs helped breed suspicion about global warming among conservatives in recent years, as well as engender the idea that Democrats were trying to ruin the economy and censure alternative science with a “liberal, Hollywood elitist” agenda, Nisbet said.

Public distrust of the media has grown in the past 30 years, according to many polls, so a recent flood of green magazine covers and television spots showing melting ice caps and drowning polar bears may have solidified the view of skeptics that the climate threat is exaggerated, several analysts said.

People also tend to express more concern about something they can see and feel immediately, which is not currently the case for many with climate change, said Karlyn Bowman, a resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute who researches polls and public opinion. She said a majority of Americans think global warming is serious but may feel they have been heard already and are psychologically handing off the problem to politicians and interest groups.

Americans think science will resolve CO2 problem

“Another potential explanation is that Americans are remarkably confident in science and technology,” Bowman added. “They think we’ll figure out a way to fix global warming and that reduces the intensity in their minds.”

Regardless of the source of the lackluster interest, many political scientists have indicated that the current apathy presents a problem for potential passage of climate legislation.

“Whenever you have systematic policy challenges that have a lot of costs, some in Congress need to see in polls that there is public support,” said Nisbet. “If I had to guess, I’d say maybe at the end of 2009 we’ll get something through.”

Such a delay could have major economic and political ramifications.

A two-year lag in passing the main carbon cap-and-trade bill moving through the Senate would require that greenhouse gas emissions be cut by more than 4 percent a year rather than 2 percent a year to achieve the same carbon reductions, according to a Senate Democratic aide familiar with legislation sponsored by Sens. Joseph Lieberman (I-Conn.) and John Warner (R-Va.).

Already, some in Congress are seizing on polling data to fuel criticism of global warming fears.

Sen. Inhofe
Sen. James M. Inhofe. Photo courtesy of Sen. Inhofe’s office.

“It’s going to take much more than Al Gore’s multimillion-dollar global warming alarmism campaign being supported by the Hollywood elite and mainstream media to fool the American people,” said Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.), who once called global warming a “hoax.”

But Sen. Jeff Bingaman (D-N.M.) — who appeared with other Senate Democrats at a press conference on Earth Day to pressure the Bush administration on environmental issues — said he was not worried about current polling data and believed that the wording of questions often influenced the results.

“If you ask people what are the long-term challenges we need to be addressing as a country, I think you’ll get a lot of them saying global warming,” Bingaman said.

Even if Bingaman is wrong, a new president could shift the national mood quickly by using the bully pulpit, said Julian Zelizer, a professor of history and public affairs at Princeton University.

A new president could create a sense of urgency

“Public opinion is never stuck,” said Zelizer, noting that the three major presidential candidates — Sens. Barack Obama (D), Hillary Rodham Clinton (D) and John McCain (R) — all support the idea of a carbon cap-and-trade system.

He said that interest in supply-side economics in the 1980s emerged from the polling backwaters solely because of President Ronald Reagan and support for the space program in the 1960s surged after President John F. Kennedy promised to put a man on the moon.

At a recent environmental panel in Washington, D.C., advisers to Obama, Clinton and McCain each promised that climate change would be on the agenda for their candidate’s first 100 days in office.

Polls highlighted by environmental groups, especially those done in battleground states and among key constituencies, show much higher interest in climate change.

The National Wildlife Federation recently released a survey showing that two-thirds of New Hampshire hunters and fishers — traditionally a Republican-leaning crowd — believed global warming required immediate action. Eighty percent of Hispanic voters consider “energy and global warming” a major problem, according to a Sierra Club poll released last week.

Then there is the fact that, when other issues are left off the table, individuals often say global warming is happening and is serious.

Newsweek reported in 2007 that about half of Americans said global warming will be a major threat to “human life on earth” in 50 years. A Stanford University-Associated Press poll from September 2007 found that 59 percent of adults believed it would be a “very serious” problem for the world if not addressed in the future.

The energy industry frequently cites different data.

“Only in response to aided questions do likely voters focus on the issue — and then the impacts are viewed to be far into the future,” said Luke Popovich, a spokesman for the National Mining Association, which represents many coal companies.

Discrepancies from poll to poll often depend on the wording and order of questions, according to the American Enterprise Institute’s Bowman. Asking people whether global warming is a problem for the world sometimes will generate a stronger response than questions centered on domestic issues, she said.

But she and other polling experts emphasized that multiple polls conducted from year to year document that global warming is a consistent bottom-dweller in comparison to challenges such as the war in Iraq or taxes.

Attempts to tie the issue to something else

To change that, supporters of controlling carbon dioxide emissions should consider reframing the issue around new green jobs and spiraling energy costs, which already rank as high priorities with Democrats and Republicans, American University professor Nisbet said.

McCain’s environmental adviser, James Woolsey, made a similar point recently when he said he had convinced a Republican congressman to support climate control measures after tying the topic to terrorism in a hearing.

The congressman said, “If we’re doing it for that reason, then fine,” Woolsey recalled this month at an panel of the Society of Environmental Journalists.

A series of catastrophic events definitively tied to global warming also could shift public opinion, experts said. Such a phenomenon happened in the 1970s when the environment rose to the top of polling concerns after Americans began seeing images of dying bald eagles and rivers caught on fire because of pollution.

Yet some say that a massive communications effort with bipartisan overtones and a budget much higher than Al Gore’s $300 million advertising campaign are necessary.

“There needs to be a campaign along the lines of the Manhattan Project,” Nisbet said. “To break out of the current mental boxes, there needs to be a moral urgency similar to the civil rights movement or recovery from the Great Depression.”

Top Domestic Priorities for President Bush and Congress
Percent considering each
a “top priority”
Jan. 2002 Jan. 2003 Jan. 2004 Jan. 2005 Jan. 2006 Jan. 2007 Jan. 2008
Strengthening nation’s economy 71 73 79 75 66 68 75
Defending United States against terrorism 83 81 78 75 80 80 74
Reducing health care costs 68 69
Improving educational system 66 62 71 70 67 69 66
Securing Social Security 62 59 65 70 64 64 64
Improving the job situation 67 62 67 68 65 57 61
Securing Medicare 55 56 62 67 62 63 60
Dealing with energy problems 42 40 46 47 58 57 59
Reducing budget deficit 35 40 51 56 55 53 58
Protecting the environment 44 39 49 49 57 57 56
Reducing crime 53 47 53 53 62 62 54
Providing insurance to uninsured 43 45 54 60 59 56 54
Dealing with problems of poor 44 48 50 59 55 55 51
Dealing with illegal immigration 55 51
Reducing middle class taxes 43 44 48 51 48 46
Dealing with moral breakdown 45 39 45 41 47 47 43
Strengthening the military 52 48 48 52 42 46 42
Reducing influence of lobbyists 35 39
Dealing with global trade 25 32 32 30 34 37
Dealing with global warming 38 35
Making income tax cuts permanent 30 34 36 35
Source: Pew Research Center for the People & the Press, January 2008.

Newsweek must read on Global Warming; Read It Here Than Buy a Copy of This Week’s Newsweek

April 29, 2008

NEWSWEEK: The Eco Movement is Turning Upside Down. Who Is Winning The Brand New Game?

by Barrett Sheridan and George Wehfritz

Apr 26, 2008

With less than a year left in office, President George W. Bush will probably never win the Greenpeace seal of approval. He is, after all, the leader who, in one of his first official acts back in 2001, rejected the Kyoto Protocol, keeping the United States from participating in the effort to curb carbon emissions. He also told a skeptical Congress that opening Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil drilling was essential to national security. Lately, however, Bush is turning … well, if not green, then at least lime or chartreuse. In mid-April he announced that the United States would be willing to commit to binding emissions targets. He has also signed into law the first increase in auto-efficiency requirements in three decades and embraced alternative fuels. What is behind Bush’s late-term epiphany about the environment?

The answer: public opinion. The state of the environment has begun to loom large in the minds of Americans. In 2007, the Pew Global Attitudes Project found that 37 percent of Americans named environmental problems as a top global threat, a 61 percent increase from just five years earlier. Sensing this groundswell of environmentalism, Bush knows that he risks being labeled in history books as the last major leader to ignore the environmental perils facing the world. The two Democratic candidates for Bush’s job, Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, as well as the presumptive Republican nominee, John McCain, have all come out in favor of ambitious plans to roll back climate change, including a cap-and-trade program to cut carbon emissions.

The green tilt can be felt not only in the United States. The Pew survey included 46 other nations, and in all but three the environment had swelled in importance between 2002 and 2007. (The laggards were Jordan, Lebanon and the Ivory Coast.) Between 45 and 66 percent of Western Europeans named environmental issues as a top threat last year, as did 70 percent of Chinese. People in India, Brazil and other large developing nations also felt strongly. Chalk it up to the blizzard of doomsday predictions from scientists or Al Gore’s PR blitz—either way, it equates to a rising global demand for environmentally sound leaders, and a public that will give them unprecedented support for tackling the thorny problems facing the planet. It should also give fresh impetus to climate talks now underway for a post-Kyoto agreement, which this time around is likely to include China and India.

Leaders that truly want to prove their green worth would do well to look north. In Iceland, a country better known for cod than clean technology, an amazing 80 percent of energy comes from renewable sources like hydroelectric and geothermal power plants. That achievement has been decades in the making—Iceland has long tapped its rivers and volcanoes for electricity. Prime Minister Geir H. Haarde now wants to export his country’s success in alternative energy. With government backing, Icelandic companies are taking their expertise in renewables to places as diverse as Djibouti, China and southern California. Although Iceland, with its geothermal reserves and tiny population, may be in a unique position, other heads of state might find an idea or two by looking to Reykjavik.

Still, getting citizens to sacrifice income for the environment’s sake will be easier in Stockholm than in Tokyo and London. Although Western Europe and Japan have been far ahead of the rest of the world on the environment, old-fashioned politics still temper the greenest rhetoric. Many of the measures environmentalists are calling for and politicians give lip service to are meeting stiff resistance from lobbyists and entrenched bureaucrats. Whereas Britain’s Tony Blair made the environment his calling card, and Angela Merkel has initiated climate-change measures in Germany and the European Union, both Merkel and Blair’s successor, Gordon Brown, are struggling to implement their green agendas. Brown has taken flak for his support of coal-fired plants and a new runway at Heathrow airport. Merkel has been reluctant to confront Germany’s coal, steel and cement industries over carbon emissions. Nicolas Sarkozy has tried to make himself out to be France’s green president, but he’s lately run into trouble with environmentalists over genetically modified foods. And Japan’s Yasuo Fukuda has made the environment a high priority—it will be on the agenda of the G8 summit in July, which Japan is hosting—though he’s been in office too short a time to accomplish much.

The appetite for change is more evident elsewhere, especially in Asia. Australia’s recent presidential election highlights the shift in political climate. The vanquished John Howard—the country’s second longest-serving prime minister—was famously friendly to industry, defended his country’s domestic coal businesses and denounced carbon trading as a “knee-jerk reaction” to global warming. His rival, Labor Party candidate Kevin Rudd, was better tuned to the Zeitgeist: after stumping on the pledge to ratify the Kyoto Protocol, he won by a margin so large the media dubbed it a “Ruddslide.”

South Korea’s new president, Lee Myung-bak, is also widely expected to make the environment a top concern of his administration. Lee was born into poverty, rose to the top of Hyundai, the country’s largest conglomerate, and presided over Korea’s headlong rush to industrialize, a time in which it quickly became a world leader in steel, petrochemicals and other heavy industry. Yet as a politician, it was Lee’s efforts to green Seoul during his stint as mayor from 2002 to 2006 that brought him to national prominence. (His signature achievement: a campaign to clean a fetid waterway that had been buried beneath a concrete highway system in the 1970s.) Koreans share these priorities: a recent poll reported that 53 percent think environmental protection is more important than development.

Many Asian leaders, like Lee, still have one foot in the old world where economic growth was the measure of everything. That’s especially true in China. By any measure, China’s ecosystems are severely stressed, but President Hu Jintao has given signs that he understands how degraded China’s environment has become, and that further damage could hobble the economy and trigger social unrest. He has unveiled ambitious policies to promote energy efficiency, created a “circular economy” based on sustainability and recycling, and begun to enact a climate-change policy “that is ahead of many other countries,” argues Christine Loh, founder of the influential Hong Kong think tank Civic Exchange.

In rapidly industrializing nations like China, it is local pollution that drives environmentalism, but savvy leaders will need to harness that sentiment to make progress on the No. 1 international environmental issue: climate change. “Climate change is by far the biggest environmental issue of our time, and indeed of any time,” says John Holdren, the director of the Science, Technology & Public Policy program at Harvard’s Kennedy School. In the past, developing countries dragged their feet on this issue, arguing—not unreasonably—that climate change is a legacy of the West’s industrialization, and that they must focus on economic development above all else. But at the Bali climate talks last year, “that really substantially turned around,” Holdren says, largely because the effects of climate change are already being felt in the developing world in the form of droughts, storms and melting glaciers. “They’re now saying, ‘We understand that climate change is already harming us, and that a solution will have to include us’.”

Rolling back climate change is a challenge that will test the resolve of today’s green heads of state, who are less hard-core environmentalists than realists responding to new political truths. Rudd, for instance, supports logging in his country’s old-growth forests—hardly a Greenpeace action item. China’s leaders plan to install 30 gigawatts of wind power by 2020, but in 2006 added 90 gigawatts more of new coal-fired plants. That kind of dichotomy is likely to be a hallmark of the Age of Green. Just ask George Bush.

Easment Negotiations Between the Feds and Private Owners Stunk, Have Now in a Harmful Way, Come Back to Roost. This is Happening in States Like Montana. Looks Like a Cat Fight but the Biggest Loser is the Wildland’s Resource…Read On!!!

April 28, 2008
 From journalist/ecologist George Werthner of the Center For Biological Diversity
*Road agreement language comes back to haunt land managers*

/By MICHAEL JAMISON of the Missoulian/

For decades, the U.S. Forest Service and private timber companies have shared logging roads, negotiating access across one another’s ground and agreeing to split the cost of shared roads.

The intent of those agreements was to enable both the agency and the companies to cut timber and haul logs. But that intent was not spelled out in any specific way. Instead, the easements were written with the broadest of language.

Now, the breadth of that historic language is causing headaches for modern land managers, as forest values and uses change. In 1999, Plum Creek Timber Co. restructured as a real estate investment trust, turning to residential land sales to bolster its bottom line – and turning logging roads into subdivision gateways.

The Forest Service viewed the easements narrowly: logging use only. Plum Creek viewed them broadly: all uses, including residential access.

Neither wanted to test its opinion in court, however, because there was too much at stake for the loser. And so they talked.

Beginning in fall 2006, the agency and the company embarked on closed-door negotiations aimed at hammering out a middle ground. They succeeded, but just as they were finishing, word of the talks leaked.

County governments, among others, became alarmed. They worried the plan paved the way for wholesale conversion of forests into subdivisions.

They worried about impacts to lumber mills, recreationists, wildlife and wildlands. They worried about wildfire and future forest management.

The counties, in particular, worried taxpayers would get stuck paying to provide emergency services and infrastructure maintenance to rural forest neighborhoods.

And so the door has not quite closed on the true nature of those decades-old road easements. The Forest Service has its legal opinion but others have theirs, as well. And now that the discussion is out in the open, the road rights are being tested, right here in Missoula.

Forest Service staffers who wrote the old road easements and cost-share agreements could not have imagined Gary Kauffman.

Kauffman, of West Glacier, is a textbook example of today’s new forest values, and is the hinge upon which the initial debate turned. Back in the summer of 2006, he was closing a real estate deal with Plum Creek on timberland not far from Condon.

A real estate broker specializing in ranches and large properties, Kauffman wanted to build a cabin, maybe more than one, on a square mile of what had been industrial timberland.

The sale was part of a much broader trend. Plum Creek is the nation’s largest private landowner, with 8 million acres, including 1.2 million acres in Montana. Nationwide, the company has targeted 2 million of its acres for sale in coming years, with an estimated value of $5.7 billion.

During the last five years, Plum Creek’s real estate revenue has tripled, to more than $330 million annually.

Kauffman was scheduled to close on his purchase on Sept. 11, 2006, but there was one hitch. The driveway.

He wanted a clean easement, not encumbered by any old “cost-share”

agreements.

But that, according to the Forest Service, was easier said than done.

“What they were trying to do,” Kauffman said of the agency, “was to attach conditions to a legal, insurable easement. My position was, you can’t do that.”

Tim Love, district ranger on the Lolo National Forest’s Seeley Lake Ranger District, wrote to Kauffman in late August 2006, noting that some of the Forest Service roads in question were closed in the winter – open only to snowmobiles and dogsleds.

“Winter recreation is an important portion of the local economy,” Love wrote, “and any limitations (such as plowing) on these activities will be controversial.”

In addition, some of the roads were gated to protect endangered species habitat, and opening them would require talks with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. One road, in fact, was the subject of ongoing negotiations between Plum Creek and the agency; they were looking to remove the road entirely to protect sensitive streams.

None of which sat very well with Kauffman, who needed a driveway.

He wrote forest officials saying, “I plan on building a full-time residence on the property and will need full-time, wheeled vehicular access.”

Any road-use agreements Plum Creek had made with the agency did not apply to him, Kauffman argued, and regardless, the underlying legal easement was broad enough to grant him full road-use rights.

The easement promised a “perpetual” right to a road, “without cost,” for “all purposes deemed necessary or desirable

 

 

 

 

Š in connection with the protection, administration, management, and utilization” of the property.

Matt

Narwhals and more on polar bears

April 27, 2008

There are two articles in Yahoo’s Global Warming News that I found. One is written by AP Science Writer, Seth Borenstein. Borenstein writes about the narwhal whale, a small whale in the artic with a spiral, spearlike tusk that gave rize to the legend of the unicorn. According to Borenstein the narwhal is more endangered by a warming climate than polar bears, who face no ice in the artic by as early as 2014 by some estimates. The narwhal whale is a marine animal. in the same article group is an article entitled, Canadian Panel: Climate change is threat to polar bears.

They have put off listing the Canadadian polar bear. This is crazy because even under Bush, no friend to polar bears, the US polar bear is being looked at for inclusion as a Threatened Marine Mammal. With the prospects of no Canadian Arctic ice, by most meusures at this rate by 2050, polar bears in Canada will face a dim future.

Ever herd of an ostrich sticking its head in the sand. Well look at the Canadian Government  because on this issue that is what they are doing. Both articles were written Saturday April 26th.

Matt

 

This Is An Urgent Issue…Global Climate Change!

April 25, 2008

What is, you say? Everything he writes about is urgent so I will not read him. OK. I just write about birds, bears, some environmental things but mostly I write about Global Warming. I should ad that there are many who know a lot about this topic and they are better writers than I and they write urgently about Global Warming all the time.

My proclivity is to be an advocate of good, low carbon footprint living. I can get easily sidetracked by bird or bear news and have as long as I remember. I did bears as a profession and birds as an avocation. I have done both birds and bears for longer than most people. Dinosaurs are up there also.

 I had parents, who for all the wrong reasons, as far as I am concerned, loved nature and encouraged me to do so also but they were not naturalists, nor were my sisters. I was a definite “black sheep” when it came to interests. I do see much trouble for birds and bears that is Global Warming related on the horizon. I see us (humans) as hugely resposable. I am a father and think my children will be negatively impacted by a warming planet. I really wish that was not so. 

I do see a large human foot print and I am so tired of arguing its presence with skeptics who are a lot smarter than I. It is a very visceral thing with me. As anadvocate, I have had an adult lifetime being just as skeptical back at skeptics, and all the things I cherish will be affected if nothing is done about Global Warming. I will do my part while I still am able.That is what I have done for over 25 years. I do have some regrets but no time to dwell on them. This Global Climate Change is a huge issue we have created, and only we can uncreate it or mitigate it. I only hope we can in time. I either read too much about Global Warming or no a lot about its ecological symptoms, another thing I wish there was more time to dwell on.

Matt

More Activities for the Global Warming Activist

April 24, 2008

Do not forget that Bridgette Stuchberry will talk about what is happening to migratory songbirds and if you buy her book, Silence of the Songbirds, which I have not read, but I have heard from real credible birders it is quite good; she will sign it. I remember Rachel Carson’s book (one of her books), Silent Spring, and the days of Peregrines and DDT look a lot like what we face in Global Climate Change. Global Climate Change will be a fight, though for our future, as we know it…The event is at the Zoo auditorium at the Smithsonian Zoo at Woodley Park (Adams Morgan) in Washington D.C. on the subway and the lecture is free and starts at 7pm. Do not miss this lecture.

CCAN, the relentless area Global Warming activists who you gotta cheer them on is having a Mother’s Day walk rallying against the horrific prospect of human accelerated  Global Climate Change. Read their website for more information on this May 11th event.

I have children, and I told my wife she should read the CCAN letter when she recovered from the comute (Public Transportation of course) If she goes I will be a part!!! She does Global Warming for a living. So do I. I have a choice. She really doesnt, but she is very supportive of these great rallies and realizes the important symbology of mother and child in these environmental actions. I remember in Montana, Moms for Wilderness. What a powerful picture of 3 mom’s with their strollers, walking along and conversing. That was 25 years ago.The photo had a lot of power then and still does. A new generation of moms needs to be photographed doing the same but the topic of conversation needs to be accelerating Global Climate Change. Read the CCAN website for more. This activity is better than eating a brunch.

Finally read the blog, Climate Ark. We are approaching their view. I must warn you ahead of time the blog is excellent, but it is a bit like having a bucket of cold water thrown in your face. Read the blog!!! The topic though dark is very real!!!

Matt

Article Lost

April 23, 2008

I get sent a lot of things on Global Warming. Most of what I get sent is other articles. Some good ones get lost because I do not have any space; just a computer on a computer desk and I share it with 3 other person’s.

 Sometimes I get a point of view from a naysayer on Global Warming who happens to present a decent point of view. While I appreciate that I cannot help but think that it is tooo bad that person is not in line with my thoughts nor side. Sometimes I get the traditional demogogary that I get soooo tired I just cannot read that stufffff!!!!!!! I am getting cranky as I get older and I wag my finger a lot more these days; somewhat because I like to.

There was a very good article sent to me yesterday about little things you can do to help make Global Warming less impactive but what was the point, wrote the author, when all of your good efficiencies were being wiped out by someone in China trying hard to mimic the American who wasted energy buying a big car, and a big house and having six children. The article was good and I meant to share it, or divide it and share it for today and tommorows blog post.

I cheated and had biologically 3 children because you could not have 2.8 children, and from college I new enough statistics to be dangerous and had actually used that kind of math(Blatent Guilty Rationalization that cannot be changed now, nor will I ever be convinced otherwise). On this I am hipocritical with a capitol H. No the third child of mine was not planned. She just came and I would not change her although I might change her world as I see it. I have 4 children, but one is a stepchild. 

I cannot even spell, it is kind of grandious to think I might change my daughter’s world!!!

 Anyway, the author of the piece ended by saying he slimmed down riding a bike to do local errands and reduced his carbon footprint by hook or crook and felt good about it. It was a very good article. I was thinking it was long and it was a little wierd in an “Ugly American” way because you still see a lot of SUV’s in the Wal Mart Parking Lot not in Bejing but in small-town America; sometimes 2 walmarts. Places like Wal Mart are so huge that they have yet to correct their mistakes.

China will have its own problems with a blatent disregard (at least Environmentally), for its own people. My cop out, and most should know this is..”we shall see…”

Matt

Rain, Rain Go Away…………..

April 23, 2008

Last weekend,which was April 18th,19th and 20th, 2008,was very wet. As a birdwatcher you want the rain to come in and start spring migratory songbirds to start flooding in. As a gardener you want spring rains to nurture your plants. As a Global Warming advocate you want just enough rain to slow the progression of Global Warming down a bit; just guessing on that last one, but that is how I feel.

 It rained hard and many of the D.C. area children’s activities for “Earth Week” were canceled or rescheduled. For the grown-amongst us the “official” Earth Day was yesterday.

It was not a fun day for famlies who were celebrating the environment. Earth Day started as a series of rallies, The largest rally I new of was in Washington, D.C.; at the time I was in Missoula, Montana and we rallied for Wilderness. I remember many earth day cleanups and I still have the T-shirts to prove I earned my stripes. I remember many visits to my local Congressman, who after awhile at least one of them would hide when I came knocking; what a riot! There were the local politicians; I remember one being rude. I could only think my children and his did not get along in school, or he was rude to everyone and somehow got elected and I was the easy kind of target, so was anyone who wore their emotions as clothes.

Things like Earth Day do change. I have not decided if that is good or bad. I am just glad we still do it!!!at least I think we do; looking at the marketing in the area and listening to everyone say Happy Earth Day. My view is that we need it to be more than a holiday but a way or approach to life. We might even wear green if the Irish do not rain on are parade. Speaking of lifestyle, I was sent something on that I will share with you in my next post.

Matt

Climate Talks Failing

April 22, 2008

This post can be summed up by reading Martin Abbagaos article on Global Warming in the Yahoo news about Global Warming. Now if you are going to be skeptical about this topic any talks are a good thing to be skeptical about. The past talks were in Bali, and they were sponsored by the UN. The next talks, and there is already quibbling, are in 17 months and will be in Copenhagen.

I am from the US and I am not expecting much to happen this time around. My feeling is that when the US is engaged much will happen fast because the US is the world’s largest polluter and the world’s conservation  innovater; at least that has been our history.

Matt