Saturday, May 20, 2006


Turned off by Global Warming?

Notice the percentage cuts in greenhouse gases required . . .
One downside to this article is that the clearly well-informed woman
doesn't get the connection between compact flourescent bulbs and
coal-fired power plants . . .


Turned Off by Global Warming

Published: May 20, 2006

San Francisco

BY now, only someone who has been hiding under a rock would need to see the new Al Gore movie, "An Inconvenient Truth," to learn that global warming is real. Even Time magazine caught up to the degree of the threat last month, with its cover story urging us to be "very worried."

. . .

Well, I for one am very, very worried. As the mother of two young boys, I want to do everything I can to protect their future. But I feel like a shnook buying fluorescent light bulbs — as Environmental Defense recommends — when at last count, China, India and the United States were building a total of 850 new coal-fired power plants. Clearly, it's time for some radical ideas about solving global warming. But where's the radical realism when we need it?

Here's the truly inconvenient truth: Scientists have long been warning that the world must cut back on greenhouse-gas emissions by as much as 70 percent, as soon as possible, if we're to have a fighting chance of stabilizing the climate.

. . .

While the California governor backpedals, a team of scientists, economists and business executives have put forward a potentially revolutionary plan. Outlined by Ross Gelbspan, a former Boston Globe reporter and editor, in his book "Boiling Point," the so-called Clean
Energy Transition would start by turning over an estimated $25 billion in annual federal government payments now supporting the fossil-fuel industry to a new fund for renewable energy investments. It would also create a $300 billion clean-energy fund for developing countries through a tax on international currency transactions, while calling on industry
to get in line with a progressive fossil-fuel efficiency standard, forcing greenhouse-gas emitters to immediately work on conservation.

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