Natural Living

By Irene Fogarty

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If you haven’t had a chance to see Al Gore’s brilliant “Inconvenient Truth” yet, take my Global Warming IQ test and see just how much or how little you really know about this hot topic. Then once you’ve tallied up your GW IQ score (no cheating), check my list of 12 simple things you can do at home to help save energy. Good ol’ Al and Mother Earth will love you for making the effort.

Q.1. Why is global warming becoming such a serious threat?
A. Animals and plants won’t be able to adjust fast enough, leading to mass extinctions.
B. As glaciers and polar ice sheets melt, sea levels will rise, threatening coastal cities.
C. Tropical storms and hurricanes will become more intense.
D. All of the above.

Q.2. Global warming may make the sea level become higher.
A. True
B. False

Q.3. When scientists talk about the issue of climate change, what is their primary concern?
A. Sea levels rising above the norm.
B. Mass extinctions of animals and plants.
C. An increase in hurricanes and tornados.
D. Global warming caused by human activities.

Q.4. During what revolution, did we begin altering the climate and environment through agricultural and industrial practices?
A. Industrial Revolution
B. Franco-Prussian Revolution
C. American Revolution
D. Feminist Revolution

(Warmed up? Now for some trickier questions, Einstein!)

Q.5. In 2003, Europe suffered the worst heat wave in the history of recorded measurements. Roughly how many people died during that killer heat?
A. 700
B. 2,700
C. 27,000
D. 90,000

Q.6. During the 20th century, sea levels worldwide rose between 4 and 8 inches. Before 1900, how many years did it take for a comparable sea level rise to occur?
A. 250 years
B. 500 years
C. 1,000 years
D. 3,000 years

Q.7 How many houses in the United States take advantage of solar energy?
A. 200,000
B. 2,000,0000
C. 200,000
D. 2,000

Q.8. What is the relationship between the ozone hole and global warming?
A. They are the same thing.
B. They are completely different.
C. They are different, but are caused by some of the same pollutants.
D. The ozone hole is a major cause of global warming.

Q.9. Over 160 nations have approved the Kyoto global warming treaty. However a few have not. Which pair of countries below has not ratified it?
A. Estonia and Latvia
B. India and China
C. Monaco and Croatia
D. United States and Australia

(Last one. Then pencils down…)

Q.10. True or false: Scientists claim that Hurricane Katrina was caused by global warming.
A. True
B. False
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Check below for the answers, find your score and then gauge how well you did.

Answers:
1) D; 2) A; 3) D; 4) A; 5) C; 6) C; 7) C; 8) C; 9) D; 10) B

8 – 10 correct answers:
Congratulations! You smart, on the ball, environmentally concerned human being, you. Al and I are both impressed. Keep it up.

6-8:
Very Good. But we know you can do better. Take a look at the links below for the latest info on the topic.

4 – 6:
Well done! You obviously know a little on this topic. But why not know a little more. There is so much debating going on right now. See both sides and see for yourself why we should be keeping an eye on this.

2 – 4:
Two out of three ain’t bad. But two out of ten? Hmmm. Forget about Brangelina for a couple of seconds. Start reading the newspaper. You’ll be amazed how hot this topic really is.

0-2:
Ah…so you thought global warming was a menopausal symptom! We won’t tell anyone. But for penance, watch National Geographic for the next 3 months, you’ll be amazed just how fascinating the earth really is. Then go see Gore’s movie, and see what you could do to slow down global warming. (For starters, see The 12 Simple Things You Can Do To Prevent Global Warming article this month.) For that we’ll give you a perfect 10.

For more information on this topic, check out the following sites:

http://www.climatecrisis.net/
http://www.globalwarming.org/updates.php
http://www.ucsusa.org/global_warming/
http://blog.oneamericacommittee.com/tag/global%20warming
http://www.epa.gov/globalwarming/kids/

Got kids? Keep them informed with this cool child-friendly site: http://www.epa.gov/globalwarming/kids/

Global warming is one of the most serious challenges facing us today. We all have a duty, a moral one, to protect the health and economic well being of current and future generations. That’s why we must reduce our emissions of heat-trapping gases by using the technology, know-how, and practical solutions already at our disposal. So when you do find the time, Forget X Men III or Mission Impossible. Go see Gore’s movie. It’s not only a visual treat but also a necessary truth we all need to face, no matter how inconvenient it is.

Originally published July 2006
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