Sunday, July 06, 2008

Altruism Isn't Enough

I like to think altruism works for the human race. Or even self-interest across a time span like a human lifetime. But then I think about what I've actually seen. In the last two years or so - since climate change became more of a commonly talked about issue, more accepted, there has been change. Across those two years, a few of the people I know have made significant changes. They almost never drive, they plan carefully, they conserve. I've made changes, although less than a lot of people I know. I still drove to a trailhead today to walk the dog, when I could have left from the house. I chose a fairly local trailhead, but still....

Then, came the last few months. As gas prices rose dramatically, almost everyone I know changed behavior to at least some extent. Many to a great extent. The change is big enough for shock value. My thirty dollar a tank car is now a fifty dollar a tank car. I think about driving trip distances. There's a party in Kent I'm not going to go to, but which I would have driven to a year ago.

So simply understanding climate change was real didn't change behavior to the extent we need. But gas price change - something real and tangible - made more real changes. This makes me think a few things:

Gas prices need to get higher
Regulation, penalties, and carbon taxes are probably even more important that I thought

2 comments:

hernadi-key said...

Half the Amazon Rainforest to be Lost by 2030
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(NaturalNews) Due to the effects of global warming and deforestation, more than half of the Amazon rainforest may be destroyed or severely damaged by the year 2030, according to a report released by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF).

The report, "Amazon's Vicious Cycles: Drought and Fire," concludes that 55 percent of the world's largest rainforest stands to be severely damaged from agriculture, drought, fire, logging and livestock ranching in the next 22 years. Another 4 percent may be damaged by reduced rainfall caused by global warming. This is anticipated to destroy up to 80 percent of wildlife habitat in the region.

read more...

http://hernado-key.blogspot.com
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