Guest essay by Eric Worrall
USA Today thinks celebrities like Leonardo DiCaprio and climate scientists attending conferences should set an example, by reducing their personal carbon footprints.
To fight climate change, start with Leonardo DiCaprio’s private jet lifestyle
Glenn Harlan Reynolds, Opinion columnist Published 2:31 p.m. ET June 4, 2017
Even though Donald Trump withdrew from the Paris climate agreement, there’s plenty Congress can do.
So last week President Trump pulled out of the Paris climate agreement — to the extent that one can pull out of an agreement that’s not actually legally binding, anyway. This left some people upset.
But if climate change is really such a crisis, and if sacrifice on our part is needed to stop it, then why aren’t we seeing more sacrifice from people who think it’s a problem?
That’s what one person asked on Twitter: “What if climate scientists decided, as a group, to make their conferences all virtual? No more air travel. What a statement!” And what if academics in general — most of whom think climate change is a big deal — started doing the same thing to make an even bigger statement?
It would be big. And what if politicians and celebrities stopped jetting around the world — often on wasteful private jets instead of flying commercial with the hoi polloi — as a statement of the importance of fighting climate change?
These proposals are just the beginning, and I’m sure that enterprising members of Congress and various state legislatures can come up with more. But the important thing is to set a good example: Treat climate change like the crisis you say it is, and maybe more people will believe that it really is a crisis.
I share the author’s concern. A few months ago I started a petition urging the world’s governments to ensure every climate scientist has access to video conferencing technology, so they can avoid the moral trauma of having to travel by air to attend climate conferences.
Please support my petition if you have not done so already.