Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Climate Crisis Action Day

See my spiffy new button for I spent yesterday in Washington, D.C. for a rally against global warming, officially called, Climate Crisis Action Day. We heard John Kerry speak on the history of growing concern and legislative failures and a third grader talk about her concern for drowning polar bears. We also picked up some info on installing solar water heaters, plus a button from the Wilderness Society announcing, "I Like it Wild." Then we headed for our Congressional Rep's office to deliver my seven-year-old's drawing of a polar bear asking, "Save me!"

The rally was a little sparse, especially for such a beautiful day. The minimal gathering inspired my activist son to write a blog entry today, pondering the effectiveness of rallies in campaigns for social change. I'll leave that for his more social-theory oriented mind. My books-oriented mind started wondering how books can shape the campaign.

I've read only one, though: James Gustave Speth's Red Sky at Morning. It's a good place to start, written by a scholar (Speth's Dean of the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies) and supplemented by a website, complete with additional resources, updates, and a streaming video of the author discussing his work. I've also skimmed the companion book to Gore's movie, An Inconvenient Truth, and read laudatory reviews of Field Notes from a Catastrophe: Man, Nature, and Climate Change by Elizabeth Kolbert (Paperback,2006).

But there are so many other choices, some overtly hostile to climate change theories, others aimed at spoofing concerns rather than inspiring action. The field looks too big for one humble blogging over-reader to pick the best or most effective at helping the debate progress. So what books have you found useful? Did it inspire you to think better, talk better, act better? Or is there a book on climate change that still needs to be written? Well, then, stop rallying and start writing. . . .

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