Good quote from prettylight's link at sabinabecker.com
"Fear doesn't travel well; just as it can warp judgment, its absence can diminish memory's truth. What terrifies one generation is likely to bring only a puzzled smile to the next.
--Arthur Miller, "Why I Wrote 'The Crucible'", The New Yorker, October 21, 1996
In 50 years i think we will look back at this time and think we had our fears all mixed up. Why are we so afraid of CO2 when our rivers are dirty, our air is dirty, food is dirty and the land is eroding? Our fears are out of whack when we are more afraid of a few tons of carbon going into our atmosphere than a few tons a mercury from more efficient bulbs.
It's funny how for over 50 years, hundreds of millions of fluorescent tubes, containing the same amount of Mercury, were used and thrown away with nary a twitch from the Right, but as soon as the Right Wing opinionators associated compact fluorescents with Obama and 'treehuggers', they became this horrid threat to health and safety that must be resisted. Wonder why that is?
A few tons of Carbon? How about 9,200,000,000 metric tons annually. That is enough to have increased the CO2 content of the atmosphere by about 40%. It is enough to have changed the energy balance of the planet. And we are well on our way to doubling CO2.
There are very good reasons to think that this increased CO2 will warm the atmosphere and the oceans, reasons that have nothing to do with the temperature in Milford, Al Gore, melting ice or Ethanol, but with the physical properties of the CO2 molecule. That CO2 is a greenhouse gas has been known for over a century. And it is this property of CO2 that is at the heart of global warming science. You work with the universe you live in, and in this universe, CO2 is a greenhouse gas.
Yes, there are a multitude of environmental problems, but don't you think a changing climate and rising sea level is a problem. Take some time and think about the implications of that. And, CO2 does not wash out of the atmosphere for centuries, so whatever climate we succeed in creating from burning fossil fuels will be the new climate. There is no going back.
Things fall apart; the center cannot hold; Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst Are full of passionate intensity.
W B Yeats