July 26, 2009

Global Warming vs. Climate Change: we lose either way.

Self-wrought devastation is as scary by any other name.

In the past few years, for those who may not hang out in the green media space, you may not have noticed—but what was only recently oft referred to as “global warming” is now better understood as “climate change.” Why? Because, while anomalies occur year by year and month by month, the general trend is toward warmer temperatures, more frequent and more powerful tropical storms…what’s happening is that as we lose our ice shiled on our north pole, and more sun is absorbed by more ocean (which is much darker than white ice), the great ocean currents responsible for our weather patterns of the current temperate ice-lite age may slow, stop, even reverse. And then, when we’re finally all motivated to act—whether rich or poor, conservative or liberal, first or third world—it’ll be too late (the ripples of our actions and resultant carbon emissions now will effect our grandchildren, not us; the ripples of our grandparents’ actions when young are what’s hitting us now). Rising sea levels threaten to displace millions. The displacement of millions will cause billions upon billions of damages, lost real estate, newly provoked regional tensions and even wars. More hurricanes will wreak more damage.

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And so, some even call it Global Weird-ing (a term coined by our elepal Hunter Lovins of RMI). For while our man-made climate change may seem small, small changes in our planet’s status quo are enough to provoke vast, unexpected, unpredictable and oft devastating effects.

This reflections inspired by the far more simple, and eloquent comment on this Denver Post blog. To see how many of our citizens still deny that millions upon millions of cars and factories and livestock are having any effect whatsoever on our climate, check out the dozens upon dozens of passionate, ill-considered comments.

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