Monday, January 15, 2007

Winter and Warming

A preview of the next Timberwind newsletter includes a useful editorial on global climate change, particularly in connection with Al Gore's film An Inconvenient Truth. This is an issue very close to the Maine Windjammer community, along with many who are in the coastal areas being impacted first. Here is the text. I will weigh in after some thought.

The Timberwind Weighs In On Global Warming

poster Al Gore’s movie, “An Inconvenient Truth” was the focus of many discussions on the quarterdeck of the Timberwind last summer. I was aware he had written a book and produced a commercially successful movie. I was aware he was traveling around the country giving his slide show again. I already knew that in spite of his passion and expertise regarding global warming, he hadn't had much success rallying the country while in the Congress or the Senate. I was aware he had continued to be a advocate for a comprehensive ratifed global plan (Keyoto) as Vice President.

Yet unbelievably, I was still one of those people who didn’t feel the need to see the movie. I already understood the science at a conversational level, and believed global warming to be a fact. I viewed it as “ preaching to the choir” after all, we were registered members of “leave no trace” right? Well, as it turns out, I was both wrong and arrogant at the same time, though hardly a first for me!

Mr. Gore’s presentation expands our awareness with the use of visual images, graphics and science, presented in a way that can be easily understood by anyone who wants to understand, and he does so with humor, insight, and humility. The moment you first grasp the magnitude and impact of the sequence of events that will occur after a sudden rise in earth’s oceans, well, I had never let it in before.

Some people approve of Al Gore, and some people don't; I understand. Nevertheless, Global Warming is too important of an issue affecting everything we think we know to "diss" the message just because we may not like the messenger. In my view, If Al were a firefighter standing on the front lawn of my burning house with a hose in his hands, I wouldn’t think to question him about his politics. I would just help him put out the fire!

His urgent plea for our attention is a brave and honorable effort, presenting a chronology of environmental havoc our industrialized world has created. He places a challenge before all people, and still inspires us with enough hope, that we might still turn things around if we prioritize this globally! The first step of course is to acknowledge what we are working with, and then to accept our personal responsibility in co-creating this problem. Once we separate the truth from the misinformation, (and there is plenty of it), we can welcome the changes into our lifestyles as this shift in awareness will demand. Look at it this way; Ultimately, it comes down to one individual who during any human event (whether they know it or not) becomes the tipping point leading to a chain reaction that results in a major change. Any one of us could be that tipping point, as human kind rises to the greatest challenge and purpose of all time. How cool is that!

This web site, www.climatecrisis .net is the official site of the movie “An Inconvenient Truth”. In addition to screen savers, posters, and a link to purchase the DVD, it also provides in PDF form, a manual as it were, to use in a group setting should you become inspired to host a “An Inconvenient Truth” party or discussion. You can also download a complete “to do” list to help you and your family in becoming carbon neutral at home.

The Schooner Timberwind in association with Maine Adventure Sails has committed to implementing as many environmentally responsible procedures as practicable during the operations of our vessel, including recycling, composting, biodegradable cleaning products, and the introduction of bio diesel while running our yawl boat. In addition, a closer review as to how to deal more effectively with our waste products associated with our annual refitting and painting will begin this season. The Timberwind’s ultimate goal is to be fully self-contained in terms of grey and black water discharge by 2010.

We encourage all of our friends to see this movie as we feel it will influence your lives and the lives of your children. We also want you to come back and sail with us therefore contributing to our progress as the Timberwind achieves the goal of becoming carbon neutral!

Annie, from the Schooner J&E Riggin, turned me on to this flash animation. I think you’ll like it! shtml

Capt. Bob

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