Wednesday, February 11, 2009

State of the Planet

from :Island Press website.

State of the Planet
Dear rosaria,

This is an exciting time for environmental activists, professionals, and scientists. Much has been made of our new president's apparent commitment to re-incorporating science into the American political dialogue. In his inaugural address, Obama expressed his intention to "restore science to its rightful place." John Holdren's appointment to science advisor comes on the heels of the Island Press release of Science Magazine's State of the Planet 2008-2009, a comprehensive and authoritative look at one of the toughest environmental problems we face: the need to change the way we produce and consume energy.

The book is edited by Don Kennedy, former editor-in-chief of Science magazine, and is out just in time for the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) annual meeting, taking place in Chicago this week. Holdren provides the framework for the book with the first chapter, The Energy-Economy-Environment Dilemma. "Arguments about which of the three. . . is 'most important' are pointless," he writes, "in part because each of the three is indispensable: just as a three-legged stool falls down if any leg fails, so is human well-being dependent on the integrity of all three pillars."

The energy crisis is not an isolated, independent problem. Real solutions will require economic deference, technological breakthroughs, and government and public support. This concept is gaining ground, especially as discussions heat up over stimulus package stipulations. Testifying before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee last week, Vice President Al Gore connected three of the most detrimental and urgent challenges currently facing the United States and the entire international community: climate change, the economic recession, and national security, he said, "are linked by a common thread -- our dangerous over-reliance on carbon-based fuels."

Environmental issues don't affect some people, in some areas, but all people, everywhere, and in every way. State of the Planet 2008-2009 inspires this whole-world perspective, and puts us on the right path to discover the solutions we know are possible.


Charles Savitt
President, Island Press

25% Discount!
Enter 2AEB at the Island Press checkout to receive a 25% discount on the books listed below (under Environmental Hot Topics).

'Green' Energy a Tiny Share of Stimulus Plan (The Christian Science Monitor): For all the hope and hoopla surrounding the largest public works program since the Interstate Highway System in the 1950s, the share spent on long-term "green" investments is surprisingly small.

From Island Press: Apollo's Fire: Igniting America's Clean Energy Economy by Jay Inslee and Bracken Hendricks


Renee said...

Not about the environment but I know many of us here in Canada when we heard President Obama state there would be a new look at science (however he said it).

For me with stage 4 inflammatory breast cancer I always was so mad that the states had basically stopped stem cell research. Now I am glad that it will be back on, I believe it will save many lives.


Lizzy Frizzfrock said...

Yes, Renee, I too am hopeful for the return to stem cell research in our country.
I am very happy that President Obama (doesn't that sound great) is keen on science in education. In Texas there is a move afoot to rein in the teaching of evolution by pairing it up with a discussion of intelligent design. I don't think evolution precludes any religious leanings that one has. If we teach religion in school (what ever happened to separation of church & state) a comparative study should be taught, not settling on one specific religion.
Wow, I certainly got on that soap box. But I do think that school is the place for learning & exploring, let's leave the teaching specific religious beliefs to home, family, and church.

lakeviewer said...

Yes, ladies, the conversation has changed and we should be moving ahead on many issues that had been marginalized under the previous administration

Natalie said...

The trouble is that big changes are hard to implement - whatever the topic.

Hi, R. Nice to see you!xx

Renee said...

Okay Cheryl now you brought up something that I wrote about on June 4, 2008.

I think this may link you to it in my blog if not, go to that day, I would love to hear what you two thing about it.

If that doesn't take you just look under June's post for June 4th? Comment there and let me know.

Now I am interested in hearing what two wonderful intelligent women think.

Love Renee

lakeviewer said...

Renee, Cheryl,

Thanks for your responses. I have never been too keen on 'labels'. Even when being a 'hippy' was hip, I hated being just that, or,a woman, a Mom, etc..

WE have had an unusual bump in the road in the last eight years, so big of a bump, that it has broken the axle of our vehicle. We are sitting now on the side of the road waiting for assistance, and wish very much to know how to pick ourselves up and fix that car ourselves.

We stopped teaching people that progress is not about making money. We played a game called 'fear mongering', labeling people and marginalizing all conversations that did not advance a certain world view. Fear trumps everything else, stops us smack on the road and allows us no options.

The three things that will set us back on the road, the three E's: Economy, Environment and Education. Each is dependent on the other, and must support the other for progress.

I'm not talking about flag waving and parading. I'm talking about thoughtful planning to improve the economy by understanding the status of our scientific knowledge, promoting healthy choices be it in product manufacturing to energy production and consumption, to investing in long-term research about the effects of our present methodologies and quality controls.

Renee, one of every three women is diagnosed with breast cancer, ten percent of children are diagnosed with learning/behavior disabilities, twenty percent of people never live to see retirement. ( But, if you read the papers, everybody is concerned about all these old people who will collect social security!)

The conversation should be about how to strenghten our knowledge, how to avoid costly mistakes, how to protect those who need protection, how to improve what we are doing in fighting diseases and improving quality of life for all.

French Fancy said...

I did like your metaphor in the previous comment about a big bump in the road - or a big bush even.

Poor President Obama - his in-box must be the size of a small house.

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