12 October 2007

Congratulations Al!

Al Gore won the Nobel Peace Prize with United Nations Panel on Climate Change. Let's talk a moment about "An Inconvenient Truth" and Al's crazy Tennessee home. He is not a scientist conducting long-term research... instead he is working on the intersection of science and reaching the public which is a very hard intersection. Most scientists lack the social skills to convey the findings of their research to the general populous and even if they did give people P-values and degrees of freedom the public would not know what to do with such information. Kudos to Al for getting people to think about climate change. That is huge!

An Inconvenient Truth may not be 100% factual since some is technically speculation at this point. If you have an issue with it then do what the judge in Great Britain suggested as part of using it for the public school curriculum... include the arguments about what is considered speculation. At least think about what the film is trying to convey.

Wedding-related: I know at least one knottie planning on giving this DVD to her guests as a wedding favor.

Gore's Tennessee home... I bring this up because this is the argument that is always presented when talking about Gore and Bush and climate change by conservatives. Gore's home consumes more energy than Bush's Texas ranch... big deal. For me it is not a deal breaker for supporting Mr. Gore because the impacts on this issue that these two men have dwarf their personal use. Anyway, here is an article about Gore's home.

I applaud Al and his efforts. The November prior to the Bush administration taking control of the White House a U. S. Climate Change report was generated by our scientists and shelved. The Bush administration has done little to acknowledge that climate change exists beyond what is considered normal temporal oscillations. I was mighty surprised when Condoleeza Rice came out recently and acknowledged that a consensus needs to be reached on this issue because it is real.

My thoughts are that carbon emissions have been noticeably elevated since the industrial revolution and are having an impact on climate and the environment. We don't know the full extent and won't until the crisis is over (like all ecology studies) but anything we can do now to reduce the impact should be taken. Thank you Al for your efforts to have people besides ecology graduate students and scientists think about this issue. Reaching "Joe America" is hard and I don't know how you did it, but you did. What I can't understand is why some people are SO ANGRY that you are bringing attention to this subject?


bunnygroom said...

Great post. I think the anger is based on an unwillingness to give up the luxuries that most americans consider necessities (power, light, car, A/C, etc) but can only speculate. Now that people know the problem, perhaps they need a readily adoptable solution?

I found this article really intersting. Ships asked to avoid whale route. Therein is a link to an even longer piece. The second piece contains some beautiful language:
"Where environmental threats are concerned, the usual excuse for inaction is scientific uncertainty.

"But waiting for definitive research can be a prescription for disaster - especially for species as resistant to study as whales."

And this most excellent paragraph:
"To tell that a whale or dolphin population is in serious decline can take decades, millions of dollars, and the better parts of several scientific careers."

If we wait for definitive inarguable fact before we're willing to make changes, it will be too late.

Christy said...

Boo! Oprah deserves it over him.
What did he EVER do while the Clinton administration was in office to make a change. And it's not okay for him to have a house like that. These people annoy me---to go out and say what we should do to improve the earth, yet living the comfy & high life and wasting all kinds of electricity. Just like Leonardo DiCaprio getting on his high horse about this, yet he's making films that use tons of electricity in these productions that gives him more $$$ that he doesn't need. The earth has to perish at some point, it's natural for something to die. We have too many people in this world who are all living longer. I don't think we can make a big enough change. I don't really believe in the whole global warming theory.

Terry said...

Oprah?!? That liberal whore has voiced her support for Barack Obama.


Well, man-whore, but the same thing.

Why do you listen to ANY of them?!?

I'd burn them alive if it weren't for all the pollution they'd create.