Wednesday, September 03, 2008

...5...4...3...2....1...then what?

Recently I have been rather bombarded by PR, reports, and then reports about PR, and then stories about reports about PR about a movement behind our race having 100 months to a 'tipping point'.

As this is all a bit close to the whole climate change 'discussions' I have wearied of, I have tended to ignore it all as, rather typically, we have ended up with two camps, 'pro' & 'con', though I am not exactly sure, if they are either, of what they are advocating, or why.

If it's a hurry up call, well OK, but history has kind of shown me that the chicken little approach seems to be brought out a tad too often, and a tad too precisely, and often to serve all sorts of other agendas.

What concerns is that, though this is dealing in matters of years (well, a decade), it is still a) a bit far off for most folk to get their heads around (especially pols fighting for their jobs and families their finances) and b) once (if?) we get that far and at 9 years, 11 months and 30 days if the measure is missed for any reason (and there could be many), it will be yet another (and there have been a few), for the more vocal climate optimists to add another alarmist scalp to their rather one-sided view of what's what.

Thing is, outside of some rather, how to put it, usual suspectesque outlets, this essentially 'end-of-the world is nigh' prediction hasn't exactly yet set the major media or many 'official' outlets alight as yet. And while I am more than concerned, self evidently, the origins of all this have already got my eyebrow cranking simply because of what is being said, they way it is being said and the provenance of some of those saying it all.

Here's 'a' link about it from the Guardian, though I do wryly note their non main-news g2 section, so I almost missed it: The final countdown

Can you imagine if a telescope spotted a meteorite that in 10 years was going to write our race off?*

ps; What got me on this eventually was being berated for not replying to a 'poll' on a forum that offered me only choices of tipping point from 2 years to twenty. As I am not qualified and hence have no idea, as this was not an option I declined to respond.

Rather typically, of those that did the 10 year assessment is now being touted as a more substantive measure. I am unsure of the make up of the rest of those 'polled' (don't forget the only correct answers presumed a certain view), but I very much doubt they are much different to me, so this already smells of a pr exercise that can and will lead to some rather uncritical journalistic reporting as 'fact' very soon.

Which, IMHO, serves few of us well. Well, some may disagree:

Spread the word about

(Early pollsters can give themselves a small back-pat for being in the 1-10 years bracket... 100 months being around 8.3 years...)

Personally I feel this adds some fresh light to the recent discussions around “putting more coal on the global bonfire” and highlights the importance and wisdom of Climate Camp...

I am not saying they (who ever they are) might not be sincere an have many good points, but in my main area of interest - how things play with the public - if I am already cranking an eyebrow there have to be questions, again, on methodology.

BBC - Climate crisis: Roosevelt revisited

Guardian - NEW - How can we save the planet in 99 months? Over to you - When this latest little effort popped up I must confess I passed; along with pledges, I rather view deadlines in this arena as at best pointless and at worst a potential set up for a fall. However, in reading this the intention seems at least noble and with latest reminder there at least looks to be a spirit of proactivity. So good luck.

I of course would advocate reuse and designed in second use, as espoused and promoted by such as , representing a worthy compromise between economic constraints, majority consumer (ie: those who may not select the Guardian as first choice of daily, and hence actually are more significant as a public force of influence) behaviours and the chance that we really should get around to re-addressing a lot of what we currently do pronto.

Sadly, at current count this is but one of only a few that actually have tried to answer the invitation. The rest, totalling some 15 to date, being the near inevitable 't'is/t'isn't' 'warmings' (a sort of climatic flame exchange) from various camps that rarely seem to serve much bar heating things up a tad more. Sigh.

*In case you are interested

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