The timing of this is interesting -- to coincide more or less with the final run up to this fall's presidential elections. Following yesterday's NPR slot, in which an ordinary Atlanta couple was startled to discover that they contribute to climate change through their vehicle and household emissions, I'd have to say that this, or something like it is definitely needed. Wait for the backlash -- I wrote a prospective analysis of backlash possibilities when I studied US propensity for accepting limits on climate change for my PhD dissertation, years ago now. The same people who've been operating the backlash campaign all along will chip in again. This being what they get paid for, by companies who have something to lose, and people who can't think through all the ramifications of a climate emergency because they have an extreme neo-liberal political theory. Both should be ashamed.
And, when the dust is all settled and we finally have a national climate change policy -- possibly this summer if the bill in Senate right now gets 60 votes, or later if we have to wait for a president who won't veto a 51 vote bill -- then we'll suddenly realize how few trained people we actually have to do the work.
Because, folks, and how long have I been saying this, saving climate emissions is very different work than either high politics or low skullduggery. It's actually about workaday jobs like household retrofit, household and vehicle finance and refinance, carpentry, electrical, plumbing and HVAC contracting, and home and industrial energy audit: about understanding the energy choices we have and being able to do some math and accounts. We have people who do all this right now, of course, they just haven't yet learned the climate emissions angle of their jobs.
But they will. They're professional people, who get up every day to do a job, on which we all already depend, and who already know how to counsel a customer to save money or energy, and who just need to learn how to expand that knowledge to counseling customers to save more energy.
We can figure this out. It is, as the article says, do-able. But they're referring to the political campaign. I'm referring to the actual work which (still!) comes later, it seems.
Gore Launches Ambitious Advocacy Campaign on Climate
By Juliet Eilperin
Washington Post Staff Writer
Monday, March 31, 2008; A04