Jul 11, 2006

Planet-friendly changes do not necessarily mean a lifestyle compromise.

Want to save the planet? Start by turning out the light

Unusual heat waves and floods will become more common as global warming advances, but everyone has the power to turn back its effects, a leading international climate scientist says.

"When you look at greenhouse gas emissions, it's made up of an enormous number of decisions day in and day out by a huge number of people.

But the planet's doom is not inevitable. "If we cause it, we can stop causing it. It requires global change in the way we think about our role in the planet.

"I want us to get away from the debate where if we don't have these intense fossil fuel energy systems, we're going to go backwards.

"There are a lot of little things you can do. You can turn off the lights when you're not using them." Doing so would save significant power, he said.

"We have to get over that debate. Let's think of alternative futures that are attractive, that people want to live and they would enjoy living in, and yet, vastly reduce the amount of these gases. I think we can do it."