Thursday, June 14, 2007

crossing the arctic, two ways

Sir Wally Herbert died. The Scotsman Herbert led the first expedition to cross the entire Arctic Ocean on foot, back in 1968-69. This earned him a knighthood. The data Herbert collected is still being used by scientists, including to assess the effects of climate change.

The Washington Post editors are right to excoriate the Senate energy bill for "ignoring the 800-pound gorilla in the room," climate change. And they're right to say that all of de facto President Bush's hoorah about technology and converting switchgrasses into gasoline notwithstanding, we need to put a price on carbon (either a carbon tax, a cap-and-trade regime, or some combination) into effect soon. That will send the right price signals, force emitters to pay for some of the damage done, and make alternative technologies economically competitive.

Because if we don't, the King or Queen of England could be giving some other explorer a knighthood in about 2060. For being the first person to cross the entire Arctic Ocean - on a yacht.



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