30 May 2008

A scientific case for going car-less

If you care about the environment and you've finally conceded that global warming will, in fact, be a defining issue of our lifetime, then you probably realize that reducing the amount of time you spend driving around in your car can't hurt. And you might want to pay attention to news like this...

Yesterday, on the NY Times Environmental Blog, Dot Earth, Andrew Revkin talked about a conversation he had with Nobel-Prize winner Dr. F. Sherwood Rowland at New York's World Science Festival. As many of you know (at least those of you who have seen An Inconvenient Truth), the level of carbon dioxide is hovering around 385 parts per million now, after never going above 280 parts per million for at least 650,000 years. Most scientists acknowledge that to keep our climate in familiar territory, our long-term goal should be returning this level to 350 parts per million, a level passed in 1988.

With this in mind, Dr. Rowland's answers to Mr. Revkin's questions are rather alarming. Mr. Revkin's first question:
Given the nature of the climate and energy challenges, what is his best guess for the peak concentration of carbon dioxide?

His answer? “1,000 parts per million,” he said.

My second question was, what will that look like?

“I have no idea,” Dr. Rowland said. He was not smiling.

I don't know about you but this scares the crap out of me. Every time I think about how nice it might be to have a car, I'll reread this article and look at a picture of my lovely bike. It's going to take a heck of a lot more than just us though.

But hey, have a great weekend! :-/

my lovely bike

1 comment:

randar said...

your bike is a bit cooler than my huffy. but i bet i have had mine longer!