[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/06/09/art.heatnyc.jpg caption="A man tries to cool himself with a bottle of water during the first heat wave of the year in New York City."]
AC360° Associate Producer
As a firm believer in the theory that misery loves company, I suppose I should take comfort in the fact that millions of other East Coast residents are also sweating through their shirts today. Yet, despite this knowledge, I’m still cranky. My neighbors are cranky. Even my dog is cranky. When I asked her if she wanted to go for a walk this morning, she didn’t even get up off the floor, she just gave me the finger. I didn’t even know dogs could do that.
I’m not tremendously well versed on Global Warming. I believe that it exists and tell myself that if I ever move out of Manhattan and buy a car it will be a hybrid. I bought some of those energy saving light bulbs but – I’ll be honest – they made me look like Herman Munster so I replaced them with regular ones. I realize that I am part of the problem.
This heat wave is hitting the East Coast while Anderson and the Planet in Peril team travel overseas to document environmental battle lines. The irony is not lost on me. When one thinks of global environmental emergencies, one tends to think of far off rain forests and jungles. And while those are are indeed in peril, so are our cities and towns, our cul-de-sacs and apartment buildings. Our elderly neighbors, those without the money to afford air conditioning – they, too, are in peril as temperatures rise. Don’t take my word for it. I’m not even a genuine environmentalist; I’m just an angry, sweaty person.
So, what can be done? What is being done? Where are the battle lines and how can we help? The next installment of Planet in Peril will hopefully begin to answer these questions.
In the meantime, I sit in my apartment with a box of frozen peas resting on my chest (don’t act like you’ve never done it), Labrador Retriever at my feet, wondering where Al Gore is when I need him. Doesn’t he have a hotline for concerned citizens who were too cheap to buy his DVD? I Google “global warming.” Bar graphs, pie charts, lots of numbers. Yawn. I wish my computer had a frozen drink maker built into it. I Google “frozen drink maker.” I realize that I am part of the problem.
Editor's note: You can read about this and other Planet in Peril stories here.
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