Post a New Topic
Original post made
on Dec 16, 2007
"It's just too late, we missed our chance," Will Travis says. If you look at the BCDC maps on their web site, increasing water levels by one meter will flood over 101.
What he doesn't talk about is high-tide storm-surge levels, which, of course, will be much higher and sweep inland much farther.
So, even though "it's just too late", Travis advises that we, ". . .try to minimize the region's emissions by promoting high-density development amenable to public transportation."
Uh, huh. And, where, exactly, would that be? Menlo Park, on average, is about 70 ft. above present sea level. However there is a topographic slope toward the bay.
Just how far inland these waters and by 2040, we are told will rise under worst-case scenarios is not clear. It's an interesting problem. Some people want to run Caltrain in a trench. Wait a minute. Could floodwaters reach El Camino? Maybe underground parking isn't such a good idea. Are we going to high-density develop downtown Menlo Park for a very wet future? In short, are we really serious or are we just pretending to be serious with solar panels and bicycles? I can't get Travis' phrase out of my head, " . . . it's just too late. . ."
After writing the statement, above, I thought more about this. We in Menlo Park have been exposed to a great deal of political attention regarding climate change over the past year.
I need to get this off my chest. Global warming is global. And, global problems are seldom solved at the local level.
There was a time, several centuries ago, when many fewer people on this planet lived in survivalist mode off the land, barely making a dent on its resources. Nature was an enemy to be conquered and controlled. Its consumption was modest. Its gifts appeared endless. Now the global population is 6 billion rising to 9 billion in fairly short order. We have won the battle against Nature, thereby defeating it. As Pogo famously said, "And the enemy is us."
So, the first order problem is people. There are too many of us. In the 21st century, civilization is so totally energy and resource dependent that we are now consuming and destroying our host planet, everything on it and everything in it. More of us will only make it worse.
The economically powerful on this planet are the beneficiaries of this consumption regime and most resistant to its reduction. What the rest of us do is trivial. Until global leaders, political and economic, actively and forcefully reduce our self-indulgent manner of living -- that to which all lesser nations aspire -- energy and resource consumption will continue ever increasing.
Even the most optimistic see no turn-around as we approach a tipping point of no return. Some feel that we have reached it already. In my opinion, all the feel good gestures, the tokenism, the pious meetings, and the political correctness amount to no more than a cosmetic palliative. We really are not serious about this, are we?
Martin, I wish I could say you're way off base in your assessment of the problem. But I'm not ready to throw in the towel yet. Sometimes big solutions start small. There are many people who are concerned about the disastrous results of climate change, but are paralyzed because they don't think there's anything we can do individually or as a community. But the more Menlo Parks there are -- communities willing to make a committed effort to DO something -- the more models there will be for other individuals and communitites to point to and, perhaps, draw hope and inspiration from. What else can we do?
Don't miss out on the discussion!
Sign up to be notified of new comments on this topic.
Post a comment
Posting an item on Town Square is simple and requires no registration. Just complete this form and hit "submit" and your topic will appear online.
Please be respectful and truthful in your postings so Town Square will continue to be a thoughtful gathering place for sharing community information
We prefer that you use your real name, but you may use any "member" name you wish.
Select your neighborhood or school community: * Not sure?
- Atherton: Lindenwood
- Atherton: Lloyden Park
- Atherton: other
- Atherton: West Atherton
- Atherton: West of Alameda
- Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
- Menlo Park: Belle Haven
- Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
- Menlo Park: Downtown
- Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
- Menlo Park: Felton Gables
- Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
- Menlo Park: Menlo Oaks
- Menlo Park: other
- Menlo Park: Park Forest
- Menlo Park: Sharon Heights
- Menlo Park: South of Seminary/Vintage Oaks
- Menlo Park: Stanford Hills
- Menlo Park: Stanford Weekend Acres
- Menlo Park: Suburban Park/Lorelei Manor/Flood Park Triangle
- Menlo Park: The Willows
- Menlo Park: University Heights
- Portola Valley: Brookside Park
- Portola Valley: Central Portola Valley
- Portola Valley: Ladera
- Portola Valley: Los Trancos Woods/Vista Verde
- Portola Valley: other
- Portola Valley: Portola Valley Ranch
- Portola Valley: Westridge
- Portola Valley: Woodside Highlands
- Woodside: Emerald Hills
- Woodside: Family Farm/Hidden Valley
- Woodside: Kings Mountain/Skyline
- Woodside: Mountain Home Road
- Woodside: other
- Woodside: Skywood/Skylonda
- Woodside: Woodside Glens
- Woodside: Woodside Heights
- Woodside: Woodside Hills
- Belle Haven Elementary
- Corte Madera School
- Encinal School
- Hillview Middle School
- James Flood Magnet School
- La Entrada School
- Las Lomitas School
- Laurel School
- Menlo-Atherton High School
- Oak Knoll School
- Ormondale School
- Willow Oaks Elementary
- Woodside High School
- Woodside School
- another community
Verification code: *
Enter the verification code exactly as shown, using capital and lowercase letters, in the multi-colored box.
I Told My Mom She's Dying
By Chandrama Anderson | 11 comments | 2,394 views
Grab a Bowl of Heaven soon in Mountain View
By Elena Kadvany | 0 comments | 1,638 views
Quick Check List for UC Applications
By John Raftrey and Lori McCormick | 0 comments | 1,060 views
Fancy Fast and Fun!
By Laura Stec | 3 comments | 892 views
“I live near Sunset”
By Stuart Soffer | 5 comments | 409 views
Home & Real Estate
Shop Menlo Park
Send News Tips
Circulation & Delivery
Palo Alto Online
Mountain View Voice
© 2014 The Almanac
All rights reserved.