CLIMATE CHANGE

GET ED PRELL'S BOOK EXCERPT HERE! Click on the link to download or read the pdf!

Climate change is the major crisis that the "baby boomer" generation is passing on to its children and grandchildren. It is a crisis caused by our insistence that we can live lives of unending growth and consumption in a world of limited resources and limited capacity to absorb waste. It is a crisis caused in large part by the insistence of a vocal minority in the United States that science is a matter of opinion and that one opinion is worth the same as any other opinion. As a result, we are living in an era where we are producing more carbon dioxide than the planet's plant life can consume while at the same time we are scalping the planet's northern forests to release yet more carbon in the form of tar sands in Canada and fraced gas in the Western United States and Argentina - where fracing pads dot the landscape - once green with grasslands and/or forests!

When dissolved in ocean water, carbon dioxide becomes carbonic acid - toxic to both plant and animal life. When dissolved in fresh water, CO2 as carbonic acid dissolves limestone, releasing more carbon dioxide from the stone in the process.

Carbon dioxide in the atmosphere welcomes solar radiation IN from the sun but inhibits the release of infrared radiation FROM the earth, thus warming the Earth. Thus it is one of a category of what are known as "greenhouse gasses." In this same category are: methane (produced by natural gas pipeline leaks, livestock and swamps), nitrous oxide, water vapor, and ozone. These are the MAJOR greenhouse gasses.

The impact of these gasses on the atmosphere differs in terms of both warming potential and duration because some of them break down chemically into other gasses with more (or less) greehouse effect. As a result, scientists simplify things by equating all discussions in terms of carbon dioxide equivalents. On this basis, in the "short term" (over a 20 year period), methane is 72 times as harmful as carbon dioxide and nitrous oxide (the most obvious ingredient in the smog in Los Angeles) is 289 times more harmful. HOWEVER, the sheer VOLUME of carbon dioxide produced world-wide is over 

3,600,000,000,000,000,000% MORE than that of nitrous oxide! See http://cdiac.ornl.gov/pns/current_ghg.html  and figure it out for yourself, if you don't believe me!

Anyway, people are not helping things, what with driving gas-guzzlers and wearing stuff made from petro-chemicals (that's made from oil, ya know). And deforesting the rain forests of Indonesia to produce palm oil don't help the orangutans, elephants, tigers, or the planet either!

So on that happy note, here is a song from some children to think about! Turn on your sound and click on the picture!

dapvoices_savetheplanet.png

Or the song "End of Fossil Fuel Man" : Music & lyrics by Mike Stout - ©2013 American Blue Collar records. Turn on your sound and click on the picture of a North Dakota Bakken oil well flaring off "waste" natural gas!

flaringbakkensmall.jpg 

Resources:

Earth's CO2 Home Page 

NOAA Earth System Researh Laboratory

350.org climate focused movement website

United Nations Environment Program - Climate Change site

United States Environmental Protection Agency - Climate Change site

NASA Climate Change

Union of Concerned Scientists

National Geographic