I was a little chagrined that two young friends decided to drive to Astoria 45 miles each way to see a movie, “Bohemian Rhapsody.” The subject of the film was immaterial; it was their decision to drive an hour each way just for a movie, especially given they often stream films via Netflix, which is a relatively carbon-neutral method to get entertainment.
I’ve heard that “Bohemian Rhapsody” is a docudrama, probably with few scenes that really require the big screen to be appreciated. Maybe getting to see it early after its release was important to fans of the band, Queen.
But, in the middle of this discussion, my husband piped in that his daughter had flown from Los Angeles to Portland to see the same film with her long-time best friend, Shannon. I erupted: “So, the earth is going down in flames, but Dawn flies to Portland to watch a movie that is probably showing on five screens within a couple miles of where she lives in central LA.”
There’s a link between this transportation choice, a warmer climate, extreme heat, drought, and destructive storms — that is, if you believe human activity is part of the equation leading to climate change. A round trip plane trip LA to Portland may not seem like much, but it’s the worst way to travel, putting CO2 into the atmosphere at an altitude where it does the most harm.
However, in the last few days, I’ve encountered more than one person who now questions the wisdom of flying. Perhaps it is because news has trickled out about the federal government’s release of the second half of the quadrennial national assessment on climate change; this report focuses on the economic and health impacts of a changing climate. “Gee,” I thought sarcastically, “maybe now that there’s a dollar sign associated with extreme weather events decision-makers will notice.”
Government leaders may choose to look the other way, but the insurance industry will not. A hotter climate and resulting hurricane destruction have been increasing for more