Foreign Policy Blogs

A Big Story, an Interesting Story, and a Challenge

Climate Change "Skeptics" – The big story is that "Newsweek's" cover this week has an arresting burning planet image, and the copy reads:  Global Warming Is A Hoax*  and the asterisked portion says "Or so claim well-funded naysayers who still reject the overwhelming evidence of climate change.  Inside the Denial Machine by Sharon Begley."  Now "Newsweek" is not exactly the capital of Left Blogostan.  It's as MSM as you get.  Here's a pungent quote though:  "outside Hollywood, Manhattan and other habitats of the chattering classes, the denial machine is running at full throttle‚ and continuing to shape both government policy and public opinion.  Since the late 1980s, this well-coordinated, well-funded campaign by contrarian scientists, free-market think tanks and industry has created a paralyzing fog of doubt around climate change."  Ouch!  There are great links, some videos from the Competitive Enterprise Institute, and graphics here, even a quiz, and an archive of "Newsweek's" excellent coverage of climate change.  You must see this article.  It's quietly revolutionary.

Meanwhile, history's most famous American vice-president who never became president, Al Gore, is making news along the same lines from Singapore.  See this article from today's "Daily Mail."

If you'd like a little more depth, go to "SourceWatch's" comprehensive coverage of global warming skeptics. 

Richard Branson , I'm writing a magazine article on "green airports" (for print, if you can believe it) and coming up with some great, great material.  I've been meaning to write about Richard Branson and his commitment to fighting against a climate change crisis.  If you go to the Virgin Atlantic's "Sustainability Challenge" webpage, you'll find some pretty interesting and useful information.  You can also read about "The Virgin Earth Challenge" and the $25 million prize. 

The FPA Climate Change Challenge , Now maybe if we work together here, we can come up with some good ideas.  Who's got a good idea?  Okay, I'll start this off.  Are you ready?  Since light color reflects heat efficiently (albedo effect), then why don't we start breeding white grass and get people to accept this for their lawns and golf courses?  We should also use these on roofs. 

Not incidentally, there is a wonderful, growing movement for, at least, green roofs.  Check out these good people and their important work

If you don't like white lawns, then let's have some good ideas.  I promise not to poach them.  You can apply for Branson's prize and I'll just be happy to tell people that you "heard it here first."



Bill Hewitt

Bill Hewitt has been an environmental activist and professional for nearly 25 years. He was deeply involved in the battle to curtail acid rain, and was also a Sierra Club leader in New York City. He spent 11 years in public affairs for the NY State Department of Environmental Conservation, and worked on environmental issues for two NYC mayoral campaigns and a presidential campaign. He is a writer and editor and is the principal of Hewitt Communications. He has an M.S. in international affairs, has taught political science at Pace University, and has graduate and continuing education classes on climate change, sustainability, and energy and the environment at The Center for Global Affairs at NYU. His book, "A Newer World - Politics, Money, Technology, and What’s Really Being Done to Solve the Climate Crisis," will be out from the University Press of New England in December.

Areas of Focus:
the policy, politics, science and economics of environmental protection, sustainability, energy and climate change