Thursday, June 19, 2008

Save the cheerleader

Follow-up to: The Carbon Cycle

On Monday I wrote about how changes in atmospheric carbon levels (or any greenhouse gas) is extremely unlikely to lead to the end of the world. Some of my astute friends pointed out that while climate change might not cause any damage to our planet, it will make it a less pleasant place to live for us humans.

They're right.

However, the future of the world and the future of humanity are logically distinct futures. This may seem obvious, I don't think that it is a point made often enough. The main reason that people are concerned with global warming is not to save the cute polar bears, or so that we can all take long walks in the park. It's about saving human lives.

The earth doesn't mind if it gets a little bit warmer for a few thousand years. But we do.

Forget the world. Save the cheerleader.