Ed Begley Jr.: There's Nothing Funny About Climate Change

Climate change is no joke. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) just released numbers confirming that last month was the hottest March on record (based on land and ocean surface temps), and at the rate at which humanity is releasing greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, it looks like it's going to get worse before it gets better.While it's true that we don't understand the Earth's climate system perfectly, and that the future is hard to predict, those are arguments for a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, not against it. If your life depends on a complex life-support system that you don't really understand well (though you get the broad strokes), you shouldn't temper with it, you should leave it as untouched as possible.

But even if we have solid science, policy is another matter. As James Hansen says, "Our fossil fuel addiction, if unabated, threatens our children and grandchildren, and most species on the planet," and we need to both understand the problem and act effectively to mitigate and fix it.

But it won't be easy. Some groups have huge vested interests in the status quo, and they are spending a lot of money to create Fear, uncertainty and doubt (FUD). Just recently it was revealed that Koch Industries outspent Exxon 3 to 1 when it came to this.

No, climate change is no joke. Just ask the president of the Maldives.

For more, check out the Climate Change section on Planet Green.


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