HOT BLAST: Planes, trains, automobiles or buses
Feb 06, 2014 | 1679 views |  0 comments | 23 23 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Eric Holthaus was shaken by last fall's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report, which raised red flags about climate change's inevitability and its human-activity-based causes. Among that report's conclusions:

• Between 1901–2012, “almost the entire globe has experienced surface warming… Each of the last three decades has been successively warmer at the Earth’s surface than any preceding decade since 1850.”

• ”The rate of sea level rise since the mid-19th century has been larger than the mean rate during the previous two millennia…. It is virtually certain that global mean sea level rise will continue beyond 2100.”

• ”Atmospheric concentrations of CO2, methane, and N2O have increased to levels unprecedented in at least the last 800,000 years….Most aspects of climate change will persist for many centuries even if emissions of CO2 are stopped.”

So, Holthaus vowed to get serious about his contribution to climate change. He writes in Slate:

I’m never going to fly again.

My reason was simple: Flying used to be my biggest personal source of CO2 emissions. With a single action, I was able to cut my personal impact on climate change by nearly 50 percent.

So, how's that working out? Holthaus writes:

This week, I put my no-fly vow to the test for the first time. I took the bus from Wisconsin to Atlanta.

The destination was the American Meteorological Society’s annual meeting. Thousands of meteorologists are here in Atlanta from around the world, and it's a chance to share the latest research and meet fellow weather nerds.

I chronicled the journey in a series of tweets.

He describes the bus trip from Madison to Atlanta this way: 

Besides the baby crying across the aisle, the loud-talker a few rows behind me, and my seatmate who slept the last hour of the trip on my shoulder, my bus trip wasn't actually that bad. I wrote a piece for Slate on the bus, had an hour to walk around downtown Chicago, met two high-school students who were scouting colleges and a 74-year-old grandmother traveling to visit her 92-year-old mother, and otherwise enjoyed my window seat.

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Thursday, April 17, 2014