Sunday, February 04, 2007

Scarlet Fever

Well I had planned on writing something on Friday, or at least Saturday, about the UN report on global warming, but life had other plans. I went down to Houston on Thursday for work and got home late Friday. No biggie, write something on Saturday, but Seamus had other plans. When I had left Thursday he said he was sick and “my neck hurts”. We figured just a cold with a sore throat, especially since that seems to be going around. Ade stayed home with him on Friday and noticed a rash coming on. By the time I looked Saturday the rash was bad, all over his groin, back and face. Needless to say a trip to the doctor was scheduled. Strep throat plus a rash outbreak on the body equals? Scarlet Fever. It sounds so 1800’s but I guess isn’t uncommon. A prescription of antibiotics and life is good, aside from the rest of Saturday being a day of complete lethargy for Shay.

The good news is after less than 24 hours he is back to himself and running around like a mad man. So finally a chance to read about and write about the UN report, reuters article on report. I have started to review some of the actual report, but there is a lot to read and digest. In any case highlights include (in layman’s terms) that it is highly likely human activity has caused global warming. To that I say no shit. Yes there are natural trends and warming cycles to be considered. I won’t even debate that we are in a natural warming cycle, but I will also say we are accelerating and promoting the problem. Carbon Dioxide emissions have increased from 310 parts per million in 1958 to 381 ppm in 2005, a significant increase. What has caused this, well I’ll venture to say car emissions (how many of us drive two cars a day?), wasted resources (plastic bags, ipods, computers etc.). While all of these items certainly make life convenient they do tend to waste. Since I don’t have to worry about my status in the scientific community I’ll say humans (Americans) have caused a significant amount of this global warming.

And now for the bad news, even if we drastically change our ways now the effects of our negligence will be seen for 100 years. One of the reasons global warming is a topic that is important to me is not because of how environmental changes will affect me, but how they will affect Seamus, and his children. I may not have much to leave Seamus when I’m gone but at least I can make an effort to improve the planet, or leave it only slightly more messed up than when I was around for Seamus. I wish the UN report had good news, and in ways it may, but overall even our best efforts will cause planetary harm for 100 years. Hopefully the planet responds like the human body and you can abuse it for awhile (think college) and then repair the ill effects later. Maybe the parallel to bike racing makes sense, crazy and unhealthy in college, but after because of all the riding pretty damn healthy. I mean I’d venture to say I’m in better shape at 36 (yea that hits this week) than I was at 21. Anyway sit down and read the report, then ask yourself what have I done today?

No comments: