Straight from the Prez's own mouth during the State of the Union:
America is on the verge of technological breakthroughs that will enable us to live our lives less dependent on oil. And these technologies will help us be better stewards of the environment, and they will help us to confront the serious challenge of global climate change. (Applause.)
Six years WAY too late, but better than never. I congratulate him (choke!) for finally stepping up.
My .02 cents on this thread. It is not about stopping or reversing climate change. It is about preparing for and mitigating the severity of the impacts.
American policy is basically pedicated on national security. This includes threats to our economy, energy resources, safety, way of life, etc. If the environmental "frame" for climate change leaves some of you gagging and foaming at the mouth, ponder the following from the national security perspective.
1) Changes in climate will and are having profound impacts on food production and water supplies. Recall Maslow's heirarchy of needs - food and water. We are already dealing with severe water issues in the West. All hell can break loose economically and politically as the world's bread baskets are being redistributed. We Americans have had it pretty easy minus that thing called the Depression - our one big drought, famine, economic national tragedy.
2) Our dependence on fossils fuels and imported energy supplies have gotten us into some relatively nasty foreign snafus. Sustainable alternative technolgies are available which can benefit our economy through local production.
- Is reducing our dependence on foreign energy supplies a bad thing?
- Is becoming more energy and resource efficient a bad thing?
- Is improving air and water quality a bad thing?
- Is water efficiency a bad thing? (please, how can any paddler say keeping water in the river is a bad thing????)
Addressing climate change from a national security policy perspective is responsible regardless is you feel humans contribute or not.
And heck, if we don't do anything, we will probably be wishing for something more drastic to wipe us off the planet like an insignificant gnat rather than this incremental and subtle change. You think the winter paddling haitus is long? We can only hope the Buzz will still be here to allow us to talk about paddling cuz we are gonna be too damn hungry to paddle and the rivers will be dry.