Last Wednesday, the environmental activist group Greenpeace unfurled a banner calling out President Obama to step-it-up in relation to fighting global warming. Since then, the controversy relating to the incident continues, with people weighting in on both sides of the issue. On one hand, some people believe that global warming is not a man-made occurrence, and the stunt in itself did more harm than good because it defaced an American icon and added to the countries carbon footprint. (Please.) On the other hand, those that support Greenpeace think that the only way to get the government’s (and the general population’s) attention is to perform acts like this that attract the attention of the national media.
Personally, I think demonstrations like this take guts and doing things like this at an American monument focuses on the fact that there won't be any change if the government doesn't step in and force people to stand up and make a difference. I studied environmental science in college and while I do think there is some relationship between natural climate patterns and global warming, I also believe that man has added to the speed and severity at which these cycles occur. I'm sure there are many different opinions relating to this sort of thing. What's yours?
This event has raised quite the debate back in my home state…an interesting (and well put!) article on reactions to the banner can be found here:
I feel like demonstrations such as this are a health way to exercise our freedoms…however, I’m wondering what charges will be brought upon those who dropped the banner, as it technically is considered trespassing…which makes me wonder if effective demonstrations are dependent on lawlessness…
Some more info:
I go further than you, as one who studied glaciology-climatology 25 years back, and spends his best moments in wild places.
I do think that man’s environmental behaviour is a severe and damaging catalyst, as you suggest. I also believe that large climate cycles, measuring in the tens of thousands of years such as the present-day interglacial epoch, are greatly more consequential.
Let’s understand that 7 billion of us and growing are having deleterious effects and not helping. The paucity of volcanic activity in the last 10-15 years is very greatly influential in terms of very short term (decade or two) effects in temperature change, also; the corollary would see temperatures decreasing, naturally.
I think there is too much huffing and puffing from far too many would be pundits; we have a primitive understanding of the science, & moral and political agendas that drives us and motivates our differing views. Too many people is a weird science.
Years ago I helped build a climbing device for Greenpeace to hoist a banner up in Canada to protest a nuclear site. I make a lot of personal efforts to curb my impact on the environment. Unfortunately my skiing probably represents my largest unneccessary impact. Rather then waisting time hoisitng banners I would much rather see these people doing productive work like helping develop a cleaner transportation method or just get a job or two taking up 60 to 80 hours a week and donate the proceeds to curb global warming. This, rather then expecting changes to be made from the sweat off the backs of others. Along the way they may get to understand what it is like to be a taxpayer.
To me it seems unfortunate that these environmentalists play right into the hands of the robber barons creating the cap and trade and the whole global warming hysteria. It fuels justification to tax everybody with a cow and make trillions more on something as innocent as CO2. Sorry, I don’t buy the CO2 theory. Very poor science. It’s also extremely arrogant anthropocentrism that humans can stop global warming when they didn’t start it. There are far worse forms of pollution to be concerned with than CO2 and to keep on indulging in this global elitist scam will only make it possible for the rich to continue polluting and you and I to be further taxed and forced away from natural lifestyles. I wrote a bunch on this at…
Ptor, your article is disturbingly narrow sighted and often false. I didn’t look at most of your references due to time but question what type of propoganda you are being fed
It’s always interesting to see the difference of opinions that we, as skiers, all have on the subject. Though one would think that we would all be on the global warming bandwagon, since the end result would most likely be that measures would be taken to make the earth cooler…and therefore…haven snow more! But that obviously isn’t the case.
And Ptor…that’s some pretty crazy stuff you’re taking about there. It’s easy to say that we aren’t the one’s causing the problem. The hard part is fessing up and fixing what’s wrong.
Thanks for your comments and insight everybody!
I really do not think our goals are different Steve.
I just think the realization of the costs are. I have seen people in california loose everything they had worked for for 20 years when a environmental concern came up only to find out later the concerns were bogus. I have seen watershed protection skeems that were later found more damaging then good. Heck, the earth was supposed to run out of fossil fuels 15 years ago. The effort needed to make meet the goals set forth are enormous and people putting banners up or traveling to an obscure location in nepal to climb a mountain in the name of global protection does not get it done. It is hypocritical. This year the federal budget deficit is looking like 2 1/2 trilllion. That is a bill you and your generation has to pay. An impact you are going to be hurt by in the future.
Good say Lou. To many bureaucrats looking for reelection. I am not sure what to think often. I know for a fact that it is my duty to live as sustainable as possible. That is the only solution. It’s not to hard, just save your money and buy a couple acres, even in the high country and bust it out greenhouse and all. (You’ll never buy store bought eggs again -> YUK!)
On the global warming side of things, I watched these presentations a while ago and thought you’d like to check em out to…
Just wanted to big-up PTOR!
I love Kail’s comment….”I didn’t read most of it(ptor’s blog) but it’s narrow minded and false”. Sounds like alot of the folks I talk to lately that listen to the “correct” propaganda and have all the right answers.
Most of Greenpeace actions are petty vandalism and accomplish nothing more than getting the flock of sheep in an uproar.
I like what PTOR and Bill had to say. The overall theme to me was get busy and actually DO something to MAKE change whatever the cause may be. Quit spewing. Keep an open mind and don’t get spun-up in the hype. Find an attainable goal to meet. Disease, war, famine and ocean pollution will wipe us out long before global warming will.
There are many of opinions about global warming. The “experts” can’t agree on what it is, what’s causing it, etc. But we are being led on a campaign that says we can alter a climate change at the planetary level and all we have to do is throw money at it. It’s laughable.
Opinion is really the lowest form of human knowledge. It requires no accountability, no understanding. The highest form of knowledge is “empathy”, for it requires us to suspend our egos and live in another’s world. It requires profound, purpose-larger-than-the-self kind of understanding.” – Bill Bullard.
I applaud those willing to put their energy toward publicizing the necessity of action on climate change. This issue is terrifically difficult for us to accept because it challenges so much of how we live (and recreate). It is understandable that many will latch on to imaginary defects in climate science, or create impossible conspiracy theories about those who advocate action on climate change.
That skepticism is understandable, but not justified in the face of a looming crisis that threatens not just our skiing but our viability as a civilization. To allow the inconvenience of acting on climate change stop us from doing what is needed to leave our kids a livable planet is just not thinking straight. Since everyone is leaving blog links here, I’ll pass on one of my favorites, http://climateprogress.org/
The things we must do to address climate change are almost entirely things that we should be doing for many other economic, ecological and social reasons – eating local foods, decreasing our dependence on foreign oil, increasing efficiency, investing in our own productive capacities, using our own minds and muscles and communities to satisfy our needs. What’s so scary about that? Do we really need to continue the consumerist gluttony that has dominated our culture? Do we want our generation’s most significant contribution world culture to be Wal-Mart and ExxonMobil?
There are large-scale political and policy changes that need to happen to make a sustainable society possible. That takes massive pressure endlessly applied – if folks at Greenpeace want to make that point by risking their lives and freedoms they have my support and best wishes.
What are you doing to make your part of the world livable (and skiable) for our great grandchildren?
now going into solar cycle 24. increasing solar flares and sun spots. does the emissions from a television account for the increase in temps throughout the solar system? politicians are very two diminsional, and political action committes full of non sense.