by Harvey Miller
If it won’t be done from the top down, we’ll prove its value from the grassroots up!
Definition: Greenhouse gases are those gases, mostly carbon dioxide (CO2), that, when introduced into the atmosphere, prevent the sun’s heating light energy from radiating back into space, resulting in a global increase in atmospheric temperature. CO2 is produced mostly via coal-fired energy production and vehicle exhaust, both of which the US creates more than any other nation on earth. When the atmosphere heats up, storms become more frequent and more violent. (Katrina may be a mild example.) Ice caps melt, which could cause vast damage to coastal areas like New York City and Bangladesh; famine increases significantly due to major disruptions of the food chain, from fish to crops, and more.
(For information, see: http://www.environmentaldefense.org/article.cfm?contentID=4981&linkID=303)
When the US refused to ratify the Kyoto protocol which promised to reduce greenhouse gases to 7% below 1990 levels by 2012, it sent a clear signal across the environmental worldwide landscape.
(For details on the Kyoto agreement see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kyoto_Protocol.)
Not only have we reneged on our leadership role on environmental policy, but by not curbing the 25% of all man-made greenhouse gases which we alone produce, we have effectively established our image as both the world’s worst polluter and its biggest environmental threat. What can we citizens do when our country’s “leaders” refuse to recognize their own scientists’ conclusions, which have proven again and again that global warming is a real and present danger? This year your Long Island Sierra Club’s Energy Committee and member volunteers decided to join the national effort towards getting commitments from our local leaders - mayors, town supervisors - to commit to the Kyoto Protocol. The program is called the “Cool Cities Campaign.” Interested readers or members can join us in an attempt to show our local leaders why reducing greenhouse gases is not only good for the environment, but will be good for the economy. By changing the fleet to hybrid, by constructing new governmental buildings with solar energy, by changing lights to full cut-off LED technology, and lots more, they can save taxpayers money, all the while reducing those deadly carbon emissions.
PLEASE JOIN US. Contact Energy Committee Chair, Neill Clenaghan at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more details on the Cool Cities Program, see: