Sunday, April 22, 2007

An Inconvenient Truth

Disclaimer: No, its not an advertisement for the documentary. Though I was seeing it last night and am still thinking about it today.

For quite some time now, we(work colleagues) have been having a discussion - to recycle or not ? Is global warming for real ? Or is it just one of the cyclical warmings that happens every so many years (we've had numerous such cycles in the history of this planet) and will most likely be followed by another Ice age ? Is it too egoistic of man to think that he can effect nature in such a big way ?

I had been meaning to see the documentary for a long time now. And I finally rented it yesterday. 5 minutes into the documentary, I was in for a shock when Gore compared pictures of glaciers receding from mountains from 30 years before and 2005. What was even more alarming was the rate at which they were receding. Now these were places I some day hope to visit (as do many of you, I guess), and to think that they will be altered so much before I even get to catch a glimpse of them.

Another hour into the documentary, and I paused it. Gore was now talking about the Arctic and Antarctic glaciers. More particularly, the break up of Larsen B glacier ice shelf in Antarctica. In a matter of 35 days (this is not a typo), a glacier that was miles long, disappeared. It baffled even scientists - a mass they thought would be stable for about 100 years or more, gone within a span on 35 days.

All political propaganda aside (there is lots of it in the documentary), the documentary was definitely a blow in the face to wake up. Even we are seeing the consequences of global warming - how else does one explain Hurricane Katrina or the torrential rains in Mumbai ?

So what can we do ? What can just one person do ? After all, isn't the government first required to pass some regulation to reduce carbon emissions ?

The good thing is we can do a lot.
To start off, here is a list of 10 things easy enough for anyone of us to do (from

Time magazine came out with another list of 51 things we all can do. While some of the ideas here may seem far fetched, but some are definitely doable.

Or just go and see this documentary, rent it. Check the facts for yourself on the internet that are mentioned in the documentary.

Or see this page on wikipedia on global warming.

It is an inconvenient TRUTH, the operative word being TRUTH.

P.S. Just realized, its Earth Day today. Talk about timing!


Riot said...

Happy Earth Day! Yes, that was great timing.

You are absolutely right. There are several things we can all do. Here is to hoping that every day is Earth Day

Mridula said...

Thanks for sharing this Pooja. We all need to do more.

Pooja Aggarwal said...

Could not agree with you more, Riot. This documentary caused me to think quite a bit. I am hoping I can spread the word about a little bit among my known ones.

Thanks Mridula, I am hoping to get the word around. And trying to reduce my carbon emission footprint as much as I can. I think each small bit can make a difference in the long run

Anonymous said...

Yes and we all agree but we turn a blind eye towards it.

On this earth day, I took a small initiative and gave my company suggestion to switch out the computers at night. We were not switiching it off earlier and to keep the office/PC's cool AC were on 24/7. They took it :)

Some say you can't change the world single handedly but atleast we all can contribute in small ways.

We just need to do some creativity. Look around yourself you will definately find ways to help mother planet.

Think this way, may be a single step can give a good night sleep in hot summer days to your parents back in India. There is around 8-10 hours power cut off these days.