The World Wide Fund for Nature [Hong Kong] has launched a website, Climateers, to encourage people to reduce carbon footprints. But to me, it has weaker aims than situation requires, and excessive PR puffery and Monty Python graphics. More guff follows:
I live in Hong Kong, and back in spring I was asked in to WWF Hong Kong office, to talk about my maybe writing a website on climate change for them. Had long talk; I made various suggestions. Afterwards I heard ... nothing at all re this from WWF HK.
Lately, thro local paper, seen WWF HK has started Climateers site. Intrigued, I had a look. (And I did send an email or two with brief comments to WWF HK; no response as yet.)
First off, "Climateers" Reminded me of Disney's Mouseketeers, in which (as I recall) bunch of kids danced about dressed as cartoon mice etc. Googling, found some right-wing warming debunker coining "climateers" as derogatory term, and a follow up post w someone remarking that like Mouseketeers - so I wasn't alone in this.
"Be a Climateer!" the site merrily announces. Also, with horrible grammar, "Climate Change. But so can you!"
But before you notice the slogans, I reckon your eyes will be drawn to the Monty Python style cartoons, as buildings fall from the sky, land by a road. Here, can click on buildings, vehicles etc, see tips re reducing personal and business carbon outputs: worthy aims, but who is target audience: children, the graphics say to me; yet adults says the info. No real indication that this issue is, says UN, the defining challenge of our age; I know WWF is highly concerned re climate change, seen WWF (international) warning that we have only a short window of opportunity for action.
Look around the site - there's even a smiling cartoon sun - and can find info like:
Anybody can be a Climateer. Global warming is the buzzword of the decade- everyone from former US vice presidents to rock icons are joining the cause to reconcile the climate crisis. ... Becoming a Climateer is not about sacrificing quality of life or hugging trees
Now you may have wondered: Where are the climate change action leaders in Hong Kong? In the US they have the likes of Al Gore, Di Caprio and Sienna Miller, in the UK we have Sting, Prince Charles, Coldplay etc., what about ours?
Was this written by some PR hack, I wonder?: so used to scribbling lightweight piffle that when confronted with a massive issue, underpinned by science, simply not up to the task.
There's collection of Hong Kong dwellers who are doing a bit to reduce carbon footprints; they're Climateers, and local role models ("See how our Climateers put their foot down on climate change"). Can see photos, read short interviews. Well, that's ok. Also, at heart of the site, a carbon footprint calculator - specifically for Hongkongers.
Change can be as simple as using the Carbon Calculator to measure your carbon footprint-and following our practical solutions to curb global warming. We can be Climateers and pioneer change.
For climate info, links lead out of the site, to rather brief info on WWF Hong Kong site. There's near zip on scale of the issue, on arguments countering sceptics. Nor anything much re advocacy: trying to encourage change, inc by government, companies; being prepared to pay more for some things if means lower carbon output. Here, though, is surely where battle to fought and lost or won: without massive changes to the way we live as societies, will barely make a ha'porth of difference if a few "climateers" turn off their lights more often.
I've tried the carbon calculator: my carbon footprint around 24 tonnes per year, with flights (just two long return flights) a whopping 19 tonnes of this. Get some tips on things I can do to reduce footprint: turn down air conditioning (ie, higher temperature), say. Takes time to scroll down tips. Also, registered with the site; received email saying "Best of luck with your carbon reduction journey." :S
The site is Climateers">http://www.climateers.org]Climateers Hong Kong - if you visit, maybe post re your opinions here.
While if you'd like to see a site that has far more comprehensive range of advice on what you can do re warming, see The">http://www.climateprotect.org/]The Alliance for Climate Protection, which received some of money Al Gore received for winning Nobel Peace Prize. You can find cartoons (as Climateers, can click around, see info), but also plenty of info. Sign up, and can get emails re taking action, albeit so far I've been asked to send email to US congress, which not so appropriate when live in HK.