The new film "An Inconvenient Truth" is about to open in theaters around the country. In it Al Gore delivers a presentation on global climate change that proves the necessity of confronting global warming now or face the consequences. The film documents his worldwide crusade to expose the misconceptions surrounding the issue. According to Al we have just ten years to avert a major catastrophe involving extreme weather, floods, droughts, epidemics and killer heat waves beyond anything we have ever experienced.
As Michael Moore's "Fahrenheit 911" proved, documentaries can be a good way to reach the masses. There is a lot of hype for this one. Let's hope the message gets out past the choir, and that it arrives with practical advice about what people can do in their daily lives to make change.
Check out the trailer here: http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=2078944470709189270&q=an+inconvenient+truth&pl=true
Find a theater near you showing the film www.climatecrisis.net/findatheater/
Something we can do in California is encourage AB 32, the California Global Warming Solutions Act, in the state legislature. California is the 12th largest source of global warming pollution in the world. Given our size and political clout, we could provide leadership on an issue that has few champions at the federal level. We did this recently with the Million Solar Roofs Initiative. AB 32 gives us the chance to be innovators once again. It's co-authored by Assembly Speaker Fabian Nunez and Assembly member Fran Pavley, and it would:
1. Put "teeth" behind the governor's goal of reducing global warming pollution 25 percent by 2020. Dramatically reducing global warming pollution over the next decade would become state law.
2. Authorize CalEPA to develop regulations tough enough to achieve these reduction goals by going after the biggest polluters. Today, global warming pollution is totally unregulated at refineries, power plants and other major industries. This bill would require industry to clean up and be part of the solution to global warming.
3.The bill would require that all major sources of global warming pollution begin mandatory reporting of their emissions by 2008 and begin making reductions by 2012.
Between now and September the bill must be heard in several committees, starting with the Senate Environmental Quality committee, as well as by the full Senate and Assembly, before making it to the governor's desk for his signature. Ask your state senator and assembly member to co-author AB 32 today by doing this easy click action: https://www.environmentcalifornia.org/action/global-warming/coauthorab32?id4=ES
Another thing we all can do is change our lightbulbs. 21 Percent of America's global warming pollution is produced by individual households. As Wangari Maathai says “Solutions to our problems start with us. We must not wait on outsiders.” In the film "Kilowatt Ours" (www.kilowattours.org), which I saw a few months ago, the filmmakers showed how easy it was and what a significant amount they saved on their electric bill by switching all their fixtures over to compact fluorescents.
This is from the website www.fightglobalwarming.com:
Though we call them light bulbs, traditional incandescent bulbs are actually small heaters that give off a little bit of light, something you know if you've ever touched a bulb that's been on for a while. These bulbs were technological wonders when they were patented in 1880, but today they are inefficient dinosaurs. They waste energy and money, and they are responsible for millions of tons of global warming pollution.
Fortunately, the next generation of bulbs is here: Compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs) now give off high-quality light using a fraction of the electricity. Using CFLs puts less strain on the electric grid and saves you money. If every household replaced just three 60-watt incandescent light bulbs with CFLs, we would reduce as much pollution as if we took 3.5 million cars off the roads!
If you were disappointed by CFL bulbs in the last couple years, it's time to try again. The design of the bulbs and quality of light have improved dramatically. Also, though the price of a CFL is higher than traditional bulbs, CFLs save in the long run. They lower your electric bill and last up to 15 times as long as the old-fashioned bulbs.
For a chart comparing watts, lumens and CO2 savings look here:
Lastly, for something really funny, check out Will Ferrell as GW on Global Warming: www.transbuddha.com/mediaHolder.php?id=1147