Monday, November 23, 2009

Danger, Will Robinson

My young colleague, Veronica, recently published a blog addressing climate change. Her post acknowledges climate change, refers to several facets thereof, commends companies for going green, and calls readers to action today. This is all very good. However, a few simple procedures could take this post to the next level.

In the first paragraph, the author ambiguously refers to money spent by companies in automotive and other industries on 'green' improvements as evidence that people are committed. I think this would be a much more effective paragraph if it cited, or at least linked to, specific examples of how automobile manufacturers are investing in 'green' research, surveys or statistics about consumer preference for 'green' products, etc.

The next paragraph mentions polar bear commercials, which evoke holiday coca-cola advertisements, both to me, and to google. A link here would have been especially helpful.

The third paragraph emphasizes that global warming is here causing real consequences, one of which was actually stated backwards. (Ocean levels are rising, not sinking.) Also, elevated temperatures during the summer, even record temperatures and such, do not PROVE things. They provide evidence. As legend-in-his-own time scientist and thinker Freeman Dyson will attest, proving things within such complex and poorly understood systems as the global ecosphere can prove exceptionally difficult. My point is this: the fact that global warming is practically indisputable at this point is no excuse for sloppy reporting.

In short, while I generally agree with the sentiments expressed by my colleague, I felt they could have been presented more clearly and with documentation.

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