Convenient Truths: A Call to Action for Regulation (and Great Contest Videos!)


If you're keeping an eye on the Treehugger and Seventh Generation Convenient Truths video contest site, you know that there are only 35 days left to submit your video on your efforts to lower your personal climate impact. We've got more entries available to view on the main site, so take a look, and then get out your camera: we'd love to add your video to the mix! If you're an amateur videographer, or simply someone with a mobile phone camera and an idea, we welcome your submission -- no experience required!The business world is quickly catching on to both the threats and opportunities presented by the climate crisis, and Monday's press conference by the newly-formed US Climate Action Partnership demonstrated that a range of business types are stepping up to address greenhouse gas emissions. The Partnership, which consists of ten major corporations and four environmental organizations, issued "A Call to Action" (in PDF) last Friday, which calls for, among other things, mandatory greenhouse gas regulation and the development of a "cap and trade" system. The timing of the press event on Monday wasn't accidental: the Partnership wanted to draw attention to its call in anticipation of President Bush's State of the Union Address. The president's speech addressed environmental and energy issues, but his proposed policies didn't include mandatory regulations. We'll be interested to see how the administration, and the new Congress, responds to this pretty bold request.

Of course, a cap and trade system will be limited to the commercial sector; you'll want to take other actions to limit your own carbon emissions. As you're considering activities to lower your climate footprint (and to get on video), take a look around your home. Whether you own or rent, numerous options are available for aligning your living space with your green values. Among your choices:

  • Recycle -- recycling not only lessens the need for virgin materials, but also lowers carbon emissions. By shifting half of your waste disposal into the recycling stream, you can lower your emissions by as much as 2400 pounds of carbon dioxide a year!
  • Use a clothesline -- this is a tough one for many during the winter months (or if you live in an apartment), but when Spring rolls around, consider setting up a clotheslines for drying laundry. If you can do this for 6 months out of the year, you can keep as much as 700 pounds of CO2 out of the atmosphere.
  • Replace your furnace filter -- keeping the filter on your furnace (or on your air conditioner in the Summer) keeps it working efficiently, and could reduce your carbon emissions by 350 pounds
Looking for other tips? Visit and of what you choose to do around the house or apartment, keep the camera rolling, and send your video to the Treehugger and Seventh Generation Convenient Truths contest.