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A Convenient Change

By Louis on Apr 9, 2007 10:25PM


Friday night, Chicagoist sat in the Kroc University Theater of the Adler Planetarium to hear Al Gore's "An Inconvenient Truth" presentation given by someone with PhD style credibility, Dr. James Sweitzer. The majority of the presentation had the same slickness of Gore's documentary without the cut scenes of impending doom (though the excessive rumbling of traffic above the theater was slightly ominous). However, in lieu of soliloquies about being a boy on a farm, Sweitzer did have some recently released studies that demonstrate the massive effect humans could have on the environment if we don't change our ways.

In a nutshell, we are already going to push the the temperature up another 3º over the course of the next century, but we have the ability to push it into the 9º range. Somewhere after 3º we will begin massive disruption of the planets ecosystem, and begin to wipe out large percentages of species.

Despite Daley's faults, Chicagoist does applaud Chicago's efforts in the green movement with the Center for Green Technology. Unfortunately, Chicago is only a part of Illinois, who just changed a law that no longer requires tail pipe checking of cars manufactured before 1996. Newer cars are tested via on board computers.

Cars manufactured before 1996 might seem like a dwindling number, and officials say most will be off the road by 2012, the cars that this change excludes made up 40% of the infringing cars last year. Additionally, studies show that even if only 1 in 20 cars are dirty, the one polluting may easily make up for the other 19 due to quickly changing emissions standards. While the change seems clearly negative for the environment, we are going to stay away from the political quagmire of no-bid contracts and campaign donations that were involved in the awarding of the new testing contract.

But, back to the presentation. On the way back, we opted out of taking a cab and went for public transportation, changed all of our light bulbs to CFLs, and began writing letters to our congressman. Ok, all but that last part is true.

Image via Swanksalot