This Week’s Report, from the CQ Researcher weekly alert:
“Reducing Your Carbon Footprint” by Thomas J. Billitteri, December 5, 2008
Can individual actions reduce global warming?
As climate change rises closer to the top of the government’s policy agenda - and an economic crisis intensifies - more and more consumers are trying to change their behavior so they pollute and consume less. To reduce their individual “carbon footprints,” many are cutting gasoline and home-heating consumption, choosing locally grown food and recycling. While such actions are important in curbing global warming, the extent to which consumers can reduce or reverse broad-scale environmental damage is open to debate. Moreover, well-intentioned personal actions can have unintended consequences that cancel out positive effects. To have the greatest impact, corporate and government policy must lead the way, many environmental advocates say.
Are measures of individual carbon emissions valid? Should government do more to encourage individuals to reduce their carbon footprints? Can individual action significantly reduce global climate change?
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