Friday, June 16, 2006

An Inconvenient Truth

I went to see "Inconvenient Truth" this evening, a documentary featuring Al Gore as he uses his slide show to speak about global warming. I recommend that everyone go see it. It is very impactful. So much so that I don't know what to do right now.

I came home and started surfing the web. As is my nature, I wanted to take action, and in so doing, fix the problem immediately. I started by calculating my carbon impact which higher than average. This surprised me as I have tiny electricity bill usually and drive a Honda. I do, however, also put too many miles on my car by insisting on driving to work and by needing to escape to Seattle every few months. Worst of all are plane trips to Seattle. Its taking off that uses the most fuel and so flights with longer flight times are actually more fuel efficient.

While I wanted a quick legislative fix, instead websites such as stopglobalwarming.org suggested that I change my everyday habits. This upset me as my assumption that I am extremely ecoconscious was being threatened.

The documentary had suggested that Washington State did not have legislation dedicated to reducing global warming.

Washington State is supposedly working with Oregon state to to put stricter limits on automobile emissions. Exactly where they are in the process, I have to figure out. I can say though that Washinton State did pass legilation that establishes market access for ethanol and biodesiel.

What I would like to work on is getting our country to sign the Kyoto agreement but other than trying to get my local city council to issue a statement in support of the agreement, I have yet to find my quick fix action. Perhaps with a bit more searching and praying.

In the mean time, I should work on my habits and actions.

In terms of habits, I can buy eficient light bulbs, bike more often, turn off lights, bring a grocery bag to the store, and carrying a washable cup to put my coffee in. These actions seem trivial to me but for now, that seems all that I can do as quick fixes are hard to come by.

Also, I can consider Al Gore's patience and calmness. He has been working on this issue for 40 years. As he says in the documentary, he believed in the political process. He gave the impression that his faith in the process is not as strong. How could it not be after all that he has been through? He is now taking the approach of connecting with people individually. Trying to spark a flame in people through his power point, his book, and the documentary. And yet he remains patient and calm. I always want things to be solved immediately. I must think of Al Gore and be patient. Hopefully then I will not be patient in vain.

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