I suppose commenting on recent reports of Laurie David, co-producer of An Inconvenient Truth, leaving her husband for “another man” (who left another woman to be with David), is simply pandering to the base gossip-crazed worst in all of us, wouldn’t it?
Let me try to connect it to a larger point, if I may (if I can, we shall see).
Laurie David has arguably done much to raise awareness about global warming and climate change. Her website StopGlobalWarming.org is undoubtedly a media powerhouse that attracts many eyeballs.
I do believe that dealing with global warming and developing a sustainable future takes movement at every human level. From individuals coalescing into grassroots organizations, who in turn motivate governments and society as a whole. To that end, a website like Laurie David’s is a great tool in creating a structure for an effective grassroots movement. Getting the ball rolling, if you will.
But, as regular followers of this blog may know by now, I have a problem when the messenger draws focus from the message. I also have problems when we are told that changing a light bulb or turning down the thermostat will help “stop” global warming
Every little bit does help, and we should all do whatever we can to consume less energy and spew less carbon into the air – we do all know that by now, don’t we?
But “every little bit” doesn’t necessarily add up to a complete solution. I’ve said it before and I say it again here: we can’t “carbon offset” our way out of the climate change problem. We could completely stop burning carbon or emitting any other greenhouse gas tomorrow, and the climate will still continue to warm for decades. That ship has already sailed, to keep the analogies flowing, and nothing we do now will “stop” global warming for at least several decades.
But after everyone is done reporting on Laurie David’s tryst; complete with accusations from a Martha’s Vineyard neighbor that David is a “carbon sasquatch” and then trashing Al Gore for, well, being Al Gore, there is still the issue of Global Warming and what we think we might do about it.
We can wait to be led from government – and if you live in the United States, you’ll be waiting until at least 2009; you can sign pledge after pledge at the most popular websites and happening events; you can deny the whole idea as a sham and “liberal” attempt to undo the economy; or you can endeavor to form your own opinion and pay attention to what is really happening in the world…
Oh yes, by the way, as reported from several sources, including the environmental blog Hugg.ca, scientists report current precipitation patterns have already changed in the last century and that change is likely to continue with increased drought and “major precipitation events” over the next century. This change, according to the report due to be published in Nature magazine, is mostly due to human activity.
Let’s keep our eyes on the ball.