There is a climate bill in Congress, one that is too weak. There is an online petition asking Senators to strength the bill. However, even if it were strong, other things would still need to be done to resist climate change. Some of these things follow.
1) Support More Funding for Public Transportation:
In the long term, expanding public transportation is the most important thing we can do do fight Global Warming. Improving mileage is good because it reduces CO2 production, but cars will never be able to compete on an emissions basis with public transport. The National Alliance of Public Transportation Advocates has an Action Alert on efforts in Congress to increase public transportation funding. You can tell that the Action Alert is written by a DC lobbying group, but the cause is just. Here's the most important part.
The STAA recommends a five-year investment of almost $100 billion for public transportation programs - a more than 90% increase over the levels provided in the last surface transportation authorization bill. These funds would help create and maintain thousands of jobs, help reduce greenhouse gas emissions, save energy and provide for new mobility choices for millions of Americans. In addition, the legislation would authorize $50 billion to help support President Obama's vision for the creation of a new high speed rail network in the United States.
2) Oppose Clear Cutting in Alaska:
Fighting Global Warming isn't just about reducing CO2 emissions, though that is incredibly important. It's also about opposing deforestation. Forests are important for storing carbon which otherwise would end up in the atmosphere as CO2. Unfortunately, the Obama Administration doesn't care. From Care2's petition:
In a stunning blow to the environment, the Obama Administration just approved a clearcut of 382 acres of timber in a roadless area of Alaska's Tongass National Forest.
The clearcut in the Tongass will involve building 6.9 miles of roads and rebuilding another 1.9 miles of old roads. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack put a temporary halt to timber sales in roadless areas of national forests -- but he approved this timber sale despite the concerns of people who care about this important temperate rainforest, home to numerous endangered species.
Vilsack argues it'll provide much-needed jobs for the region -- but even in troubled economic times, we cannot sacrifice the future of our planet! Urge President Obama to reverse this decision and ensure no more clearcutting and roadbuilding occurs in the Tongass.
This illustrates another problem. Forest management should not be in the Dept. of Agriculture. Agriculture involves using living things to make products. Forests have a lot of critical functions that fit completely outside this mindset.
Please Sign the Petition!
3) Don't Drill, Baby!
Defenders of Wildlife has a Care2 petition calling on the Secretary of Interior to reconsider shocking plans to allow drilling in Alaska. The focus of the alert is on the wildlife, but increased oil drilling anywhere contributes to Global Warming. We need more public transportation, not more oil drilling. Here is the text of their petition.
Just because Sarah Palin is stepping down as governor, doesn't mean Alaska's wildlife is safe. Bristol Bay -- home to sea otters, whales, sea lions and the world's largest run of sockeye salmon -- could soon be open to oil and gas drilling.
Bristol Bay is not only one of the most biologically productive places on the planet, providing vital habitat for hundreds of fish species and dozens of marine mammals, but it is also an economic powerhouse. Bristol Bay and the northern Bering Sea supply more than 40% of all U.S. fish catch and bring in more than $2 billion a year.
If action is not taken, Bristol Bay could soon be open to oil and gas drilling exponentially increasing the chances for a disastrous oil spill. Help stop the drilling and urge U.S. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar to reconsider plans to allow drilling in one of the world's most sensitive places.
Please Sign the Petition!