Monday, February 19, 2007

Study Questions Prospects for Much Lower Emissions





WASHINGTON, Feb. 14 — As Democratic leaders in Congress prepare to put climate change legislation on the agenda, some in the utility industry are arguing that it will take decades of investments and innovation to get substantial reductions in their emissions of greenhouse gases.




A Path to Reduced Emissions Electric power companies, which emit about one-third of America’s global warming gases, could reduce their emissions to below the levels of 1990, but that would take about 20 years, no matter how much the utilities spend, according to a new industry study.



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Sunday, February 11, 2007

Boycott America?




The fact that humans have contributed to the current problem of global warming is “unequivocal” according to the recent report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Webster’s definition of “unequivocal” tells us: not equivocal; unambiguous; clear; having only one possible meaning or interpretation; absolute; unqualified; not subject to conditions or exceptions. This is the most definitive information we have on the issue of global warming and ends the speculation about causal effects of our activities.



Doubters will now have to get down to the business of securing our future. There is no more “us and them” in regards to our next evolutionary step and all indications are that we must act quickly and decisively. The damage we have created up until now will be felt for the next 1.000 years and so too will be the significance or our future actions or inactions.



History has called on us with challenges in the past and we have risen to the occasion. Reducing our carbon output will require extraordinary cooperation amongst business, government, and citizens. This action is needed within the current context of the government’s escalated push against the notion of “the commons. ” We must revive our notion of the common good if we want a future worth living in. It does not help that our national identity has changed from being a “citizen” at the beginning of the 20th century to that of a “consumer” 100 years later. We have become individual mindless pacman consuming units. The trail of debris from the ever-manic hyper-vigilant pacman has never been seen. Perhaps the IPCC report will in effect slap night vision goggles on us before sitting down to our gaming console as we peek into our future in the 21st century. We also must not heed the advice of vested interests when they tell us “ pay no attention to that man behind the curtain.” There is no turning back. The IPCC report has neatly removed the curtain to reveal the reality of what Pogo taught us,“ we have met the enemy and he is us.”



As the reality of George Bush’s failed policies permeate our national psyche and we catch up to what the rest of the world already knows, what will their reaction be? Parts of the European Union are light years ahead of us in regards to moving towards a more energy sustainable future. The reaction to our recalcitrant behavior towards global warming has isolated and alienated us from the rest of the world. At what point does the notion of “buying American” become shameful? Increasing hostile dependence with our trading partners will further erode our brand value as other competitive markets develop in this global economy. All of this of course is moot when we relocalize and reinvigorate our economy for a healthy future. Until we discover these answers, the likelihood of “ Boycott America” builds.



Mike