Sunday, April 22, 2012

Happy Earth Day

School children and "green" conscious adults across the nation are celebrating Earth Day this weekend.

I recall during my teaching days the great lengths we'd go to to bring awareness to students regarding the problems we face in terms of the Greenhouse Effect and global warming.

We had kids make posters, we saw movies and put on skits of our own.  Very often we had visitors come to the school and make presentations.

Community efforts are in full swing also with groups of people roaming the streets with garbage bags picking up litter.  Towns and cities of course have been running recycling programs for several years now.

All of this is good.  We need to be recycling glass, paper and plastic.  Our landfills are filling up. But here's the problem.  In terms of actually reducing our carbon footprint it's small potatoes.  The fact is one coal fired power plant like the one shown here does more harm to the earth than all of the litter combined in the country.  And given the fact that this country has enough coal to keep us going for many, many years, the prognosis doesn't seem promising...unless government and industry work together to find ways to burn coal cleanly.  That will involve tax dollars and reduced profits but the end result will be worth it. 

Unfortunately a republican controlled Congress is not in the least bit receptive to this idea.  More reason to make some dramatic changes in Congress this November.

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