It’s For an Important Cause . . .

// Here is what Bill McKibben said about his fossil fuel use on The Colbert Report:

There’s no doubt that I’m a hypocrite. I’ve spent the last 4 years on the move around the planet, building this big global climate movement, and spewing carbon behind me as I went.

In 2008, Al Gore famously asked us to stop using fossil fuels for electricity by 2018, and yet he flies in private jets around the world to this day promoting his environmentalist ideas. Obviously they believe they deserve special treatment because they have an important cause, which requires them to use more fossil fuels than they think others ought to use. But what does it mean to be important? In the four years McKibben flew around promoting, I flew to Europe for a semester abroad, met my best friend (and many other good friends), advanced my career by attending conferences in

six states, moved halfway across the continent, visited my family and friends regularly, and took memorable trips to interesting places. I’ve enjoyed meals with food grown around the world, with people from around the world, and wines from every region. I’ve had affordable, reliable access to transportation, healthcare, clothing, a comfortable home, and so on—all because of fossil fuels. According to McKibben, I shouldn’t have been able to use 80-95% of the fossil fuels I did during those highly formative years, presumably because I’m not pursuing an important cause. Well, I am pursuing the most important cause I can—my life—by the best means possible: using tons of fossil fuels. If there’s something I should regard as more important, I’d like to know what.   //