Harvard and I have known for quite a while that many of the people of goodwill we know need lots more valid information about climate change than one can glean from the popular press and its doctrine of “equal time.” Nothing is gained by giving equal time to myths, misinformation, and outright lies that surround the debate about climate change. Nothing is gained when broadcasters preface everything with “some scientists believe ….” Yeah, if you call 97% some.
So, over a year ago, Harvard and I concluded that someone needs to write a book about climate change that the average non-scientist reader could understand and find interesting—a book that makes clear what is happening and why it’s happening and what collective wisdom now thinks we need to do to stop it. So, we’re hard at work on TRAIN WRECK EARTH—How the fossil fuel industry’s stranglehold on governments and societies is wrecking the planet.
We created a fictional classroom in a university where two professors co-teach a class about climate change with lectures in a conversational style you’d likely find in a classroom, with lots of crosstalk and debate among the students and the professors. Readers will get to know the professors and also the students by name and their personalities. The profs use the Socratic method of asking pointed questions to challenge the students to think about why a particular thing is like it is. This forum lets us teach students (and readers, of course) the science in a gentle and non-technical manner, and also teach about all the collateral issues of climate change such as whether fracking is as bad as people say it is (it’s worse), and whether nuclear still has a place (probably not), or whether geoengineering is a good idea (probably not), and whether we can use renewables in a bigger way to begin replacing coal and petroleum quickly (we can), and so forth.
So, we hope you’ll stay tuned and watch for the book, due out in 2015.
Why the blog? While the book progresses, Harvard and I want to tell interested people about the dynamic topic of climate change. This field changes every day—literally. We continue to make progress in our understanding of what’s going on, but unfortunately, the more researchers confirm about it, the more worried we become—actual results tend to be worse than the forecasts made by folks who are by nature conservative about such. So, dealing with climate change meaningfully is becoming quite urgent.
In these posts, we’re going to call out the worst offenders in Congress who should be ashamed of themselves for basically taking money from the fossil fuel industry to do their bidding for them and keep the United States from moving aggressively ahead to try to mitigate the process before it is actually too late. We may call these posts “climate shaming,” and may have a top 10 worst offenders each year. We’d like your thoughts on this idea. And we’ll report our thoughts on current events and findings as often as we can.
Plus, if you keep up with our Climate Rant, you’ll have an inside track of our book progress while you read about current happenings surrounding the most daunting challenge to modern society since the advent of nuclear weapons.
We hope you’ll comment to these posts, and so long as your comments meet our standards of decorum, we’ll honor them by posting them and by replying to them. If they’re just nasty or vulgar and would offend our family-friendly audience, we’ll not post them. We’re fine if you disagree strongly so long as you do it respectfully and your point is based on intellect, not ideology, and we’ll do the same. That said, we plan to tell it like it is in this post.
More later …