Goshen News, Goshen, IN

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December 9, 2012

SHADES OF GREEN: Better safe than sorry when it comes to the climate

(Continued)

All I am saying is that we need to lower our carbon production so the blanket of CO2 in the earth’s atmosphere blanket doesn’t continue to thicken because I know when I am sleeping and I have too many blankets on I can just remove one of those comforters to decrease my heat production. Reducing the size of our blanket in our atmosphere is none too easy — except through reducing our carbon releases, which means reducing our consumption.

I am not saying “don’t buy anything.” I am not saying become a Luddite and fear technology.

I am asking us to read and understand data AND work at being the solution and not the problem.

Currently our CO2 level in the atmosphere is 392 parts per million (ppm). Since the beginning of time we always had a CO2 blanket of around 275 ppm that helped us keep an average temperature of in the upper 50s globally. A goal that was given to us by some very wise climatologists is to reduce that number to 350 ppm.

Last week the Center for International Climate and Environmental Research in Oslo, Norway said we putting more than 2.4 million pounds of carbon dioxide into the air every second. They also stated globally our carbon production increased by 3 percent in 2011.

According to NOAA (the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) the average global temperature across land and oceans during June 2012 was 1.13 degrees F above the 20th century average of 59.9 degrees F and ranked as the fourth warmest June since records began in 1880.

June 2012 also marks the 36th consecutive June and 328th consecutive month with a global temperature above the 20th century average. The last below-average June temperature was June 1976 and the last below-average temperature for any month was February 1985. It was the second warmest June in the Northern Hemisphere, behind only the record warmth of 2010. The Southern Hemisphere had its 12th warmest June on record.

I’m an environmental educator/lover of science. That kind of information tells me something.

Could it be a cycle of warming? Sure — it can be part of the situation — I am a holistic person.

But the 7 billion consumers.

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Poll

Last weekend (July 12) the Goshen Parks Department held its Kid’s Try-athlon to promote childhood fitness and this week (July 18) the new bicycle trail is open to the fairgrounds in Goshen, offering residents a healthy way to get to the annual agriculture exposition. Have you joined the local fitness movement?

Yes, I work at eating healthy and exercising
No, I am happy with my fitness level
Changing my diet and exercise frequency is a work in progress
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