31 August 2009

97 Days - It's All About the Methane (GO VEG!)

American President Bill Clinton's campaign team, back in 1992, made famous the line, "It's the economy, stupid." More and more, it's looking like we should borrow it for our climate emergency action:


It's not the easiest of math. The heating effect of methane over its 12 year lifespan in the atmosphere is about 100 times stronger than the heating effect of the same amount of emitted carbon dioxide. But then the methane breaks down into water vapour, ozone and CO2 — all greenhouse gases — and can carry on emitting heat for hundreds of years longer.

The physics of methane heating (like the physics of global warming), however, is simple. Put more methane into the atmosphere, the atmosphere heats up more.

And keep in mind that we are emitting all these greenhouse gases constantly, so they are accumulating in the atmosphere.

Since so many human beings seem to be overwhelmed by the idea of safeguarding the future by lowering our CO2 emissions, what about if we focus for the next two years on just one thing: stopping our methane emissions?

And what if we (the people) focus on just one way to do that: not eating meat?

What if? There is some scientific conjecture that if globally we stopped eating meat as quickly as possible (within about two years), we could still save the day — and the future.

Here's a
Meat Free Petition I have signed and am happy to support.

And this
Meat Free Monday Canada site explains the background to the Meat Free petition.

Please think about this. We're going to have to get our carbon dioxide emissions down to virtually zero — but that can be a slightly longer term feat. Right now, let's see what we can accomplish by being more compassionate to the other animals we share this planet with and going vegetarian or, better yet, vegan.

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I would appreciate hearing your thoughts or questions on this post or anything else you've read here. What is your take on courage and compassion being an important part of the solution to the climate change emergency?