Earth on Fire: The Overheating Planet

Earth on Fire: The Overheating Planet

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The reason some popular posts are tagged ‘no title’ is not because they have no title—they all do—but because the old Blogger embedded the title at the top of text, and the new software does not see that. You can see the titles in capitals at the start of each snippet. (It would be nice if Blogger introduced an upgrade program that could fix this little problem.)

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Tuesday, 8 May 2007


Someone who flies is often accused of having a huge carbon-footprint, but the reasoning is false.

First, the entire airline industry accounts for only about 3% of the total greenhouse-gas emissions. If that was all we had we would have achieved a 97% cut, and the planet could easily handle what was left.

Second, whether that person flies or not does not affect the flight. It will still happen; its fuel will still be burned. There would have to be a mass, ongoing boycott to stop it. And most of the weight is in the aircraft and its fuel, not the passengers. In total they account for no more than about 10%, so adding one individual makes only a very tiny difference to the fuel-consumption.

In contrast the carbon-footprint created when that person drives to the airport is huge. So people who point accusing fingers at the airlines should reserve their venom for what is in their own garages and over at the coal-fired power-stations that generate their power. Or is that too close to home? Better to shift the blame to that extremely horrid 3% up there than face the fact that you are part of the catastrophic 97% right here. Otherwise you might have to think about giving up your own planet-wrecking habits. You might even have to turn thought to action. Aaaaaaaaaaaaaarggh!