An Inconvenient Truth (The Planetary Emergency of Global Warming and What We Can Do About It)
By Al Gore, Rodale Publishers 2006, 328 pages, $28.95 CAN.
If your loved one is critically ill, you are galvanized into activity. You research to obtain the most up-to-date statistics and information, network with support groups, and seek out appropriate experts. You want to comfort your loved one and you need to have hope for a full recovery while facing grim reality. As the stricken one’s condition deteriorates, you may even pray to ‘the great beyond.’ You are involved physically, emotionally and even spiritually because you desperately want your loved one to be healed. However, most people ignore the gasping pleas of one that is severely ailing and loved by each of us…our own earth.
When you’re faced with the loss of a cherished love one, it changes who you fundamentally are. Al Gore experienced this when his young son was struck by a car and nearly died. Staying bedside at the hospital for a month, Gore states that all busy schedules suddenly are eliminated from your mind and you’re forced to prioritize your life. He makes clear the analogy of wanting his son to heal and recover with realizing that the ravished earth needs to heal too.
Faced with the possibility of a profound loss at this crucial period of his life, Al Gore asked himself what he could do to make a difference for his son and our planet. Surrounded by the solace and beauty of nature at his heritage farm in Tennessee, Gore realized that he could use a similar recovery formula of seeking and learning, to help mankind understand enough about the extent of the earth’s global warming damage so that everyone would be motivated to help. The title, "An Inconvenient Truth” infers that knowledge is moral obligation to act accordingly.
There are dire circumstances we each must confront about our world environment, especially global warming. Scientists proclaim that climatic catastrophes are very plausible. If Greenland continues melting at its accelerated rate and falls into the ocean, it will raise sea levels almost 20 feet around the earth. Most of Florida would be submerged as well as other more populated areas of the world such as Beijing and Shanghai, which would displace 100,000,000 people. This would be untold calamity for infrastructure, food production, overcrowding and drinking water shortages, and would create havoc in society.
Perhaps the American press hasn’t been kind to Al Gore over the years, but this man wins kudos around the world for the tireless effort and tremendous positive impact he is generating with his stellar slide show, stunning book and memorable movie of the same title. With colourful graphs and concise text, he cites the hard facts which demonstrate the irresponsibility of the Bush-Cheney administration towards global warming and the ensuing environmental problems caused by their hiring of ‘naysayers’ to misinform the public.
It’s significant to note that nearly 50 Nobel Prize winning scientists wrote a collective letter to the current Bush government accusing it of distorting science and threatening the future of the earth!
Every page of this book is enlightening with succinct explanations of the problems. But all is not doom and gloom. As the subtitle suggests, there is hope. The last 17 pages are devoted to helpful ideas and websites to address the woes of the earth. You ought to start with www.climatecrisis.net to calculate your own personal carbon emission statistic. Interspersed throughout the book are soft yellow coloured pages which give us a privileged glimpse into the Gore family album. Those poignant photographs and captions allow us to follow the profound influences on Al Gore as he develops from boy to man to world humanitarian.
Ignorance is not bliss. No matter where you live, and no matter what your profession, business or pleasure time consists of, we are all interconnected. The quality of your life depends on the future health of our earth.
Run, don’t walk to obtain a copy of this very comprehensive and instructive book. Fate deals each of us tragedies in a lifetime, but do the experiences make us a ‘better’ person or a ‘bitter’ person? Gain knowledge and inspiration from this book and ask how YOU can make a difference.
IT IS DIFFICULT TO GET A MAN TO UNDERSTAND SOMETHING WHEN HIS SALARY DEPENDS ON HIS NOT UNDERSTANDING. Upton Sinclair
THERE ARE TWO WAYS TO LIVE YOUR LIFE. ONE IS AS THOUGH NOTHING IS A MIRACLE. THE OTHER IS AS THOUGH EVERYTHING IS A MIRACLE. Albert Einstein