Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Carbon-Neutral Motorcade??

One more quick thought for the day:

The Natural Resources Defense Council announced today that they have purchased "offsets" to make tonight's Presidential motorcade to the State of the Union address carbon-neutral. This is, I sincerely believe, a well-intentioned gesture intended to raise awareness on the need to adopt renewable, climate-friendly energy policies. (And its working, I might add-- it inspired this post!)

Personally, though, I hope the concept gives everyone pause. The idea of purchasing carbon credits as a worthy penance for those energy consumers affluent enough to do so seems misguided. The practice amounts to a lavish outlay of cash designed to assuage the conscience of the guilt-ridden while they press ahead with the status quo. Clearly, our present situation demands a fundamental change in our priorities and behavior, not a shift in our allocation of capital. We cannot hope to solve our energy woes by throwing money at companies, communities, and countries in the hopes they will save us from ourselves.

What's good for the President on the world stage, sadly, is not the solution for America as a whole.

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