I finally got around to watching Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth last night. I hadn’t been in a big hurry to see it, because I already understood how global warming works (thanks to an excellent National Geographic article from awhile back). I even thought I was pretty decent at explaining it to people. Now that I have watched it, I’m very glad I did so. Gore lays out the argument powerfully and effectively, and needless to say, he has plenty of visual documentation of what’s going on that’s not available to most of us. I thought the movie itself was well done, and was about as entertaining as a movie about a guy giving a slide show could be.
One thing that bears mentioning (and I know that because I’ve seen it mentioned in every other review of the movie I’ve seen) is that the movie is hopeful. Yes, we have problems, but these are solvable problems, and as technology advances, they will become more solvable. That’s something that can’t be said often enough.
The other good news is that not everyone has to agree on global warming for society to take action to fight it. For real change, all we need is for a majority of people to take it seriously. In the best case scenario, after a herculean effort, we will lower our carbon emissions enough to reverse the trends we’re seeing now, climate change will be slowed or even halted, and 75 years from now some group of people who haven’t paid attention will make fun of the crazy liberals from way back when who said that global warming was going to put an end to civilization, completely ignoring the fact that it would have had we not taken action.