Draft Al Gore for President of the World: His Nobel lecture.

Al Gore’s Nobel lecture, in full I hope.

More than ever, we need leaders who take climate change seriously. I’m not talking Kyoto serious, I’m talking “Oh crap oh crap, billions will die if we don’t do something now” serious. It is something of a blessing and a curse for me that I studied some environmental science at UEA, as it leaves me less able than most to blithely ignore the coming storm, and go about my business.

Seriously, as someone with a fair bit of ecologist training, I am shitting myself. Not for my own sake, I’ll get by, but for the sake of a world that I’m really quite fond of, and the sake my my entirely theoretical grandchildren. We need the world to wake up and engage in a bit of constructive panic, or our descendants are going to inherit a pretty bleak post-mass extinction world. The greatly reduced natural diversity might sound boring, but I’m sure the greatly increased occurrence of catastrophic weather events will keep things interesting. This sounds like hyperbole. I wish it was.

Global warming is by no means the only environmental issue we have to deal with. Our air, our water, our food; all have become tainted by novel manmade chemicals that have absolutely no business being in our bodies. Species are dying off at an ever increasing rate. Mostly due to destruction of habitat, or inability to cope with changing climate, but sometimes we’re not even sure why, except that they’re probably reacting badly to one of the cocktail of chemicals they’re being poisoned with.

We need leaders who will grasp all these literally existential threats, and take the massive and momentous steps necessary to address them. The nature of politics, sadly, is that very few are willing to take the pain in the short term that we need to ensure long term prosperity.

Al Gore still hasn’t ruled out running for US President, though he’s leaving it bloody late. Al Gore announcing his candidacy would be the best Christmas present I could get. I’d even pass up an iPhone for it. If we can’t have Gore, then in every state, in every nation, we need to ask our politicians what they’re going to do about the environment. If they don’t think that it is the number one issue for our times, find someone who does. If they’re not shitting themselves, they’re not paying attention.

Intelligent Design Special on Nova Online

The PBS Nova Special on Intelligent Design, “Judgement Day” has just gone online. It’s pretty thought provoking, and well worth a watch if you didn’t get the chance to see it when it aired earlier in the week. It covers the 2005 dispute between the Dover school board, and the parents who brought a lawsuit against it for breach of the 1st amendment right of the seperation of church and state.


My degree was predominantly in evolution and ecology, so you can guess which side I was cheering….