Technically, I am 50 today

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"Technically, I am 50 today"

At least that’s what Wikipedia says.

But my daughter keeps me young at heart.  And the blog keeps my neurons firing.  Thanks for that.

For my b’day, consider either buying my book or posting a globally heart-warming story — think “Chicken Soup for the Climate Science Realist’s Soul,” since I don’t expect to see that book anytime soon….

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61 Responses to Technically, I am 50 today

  1. Lennart van der Linde says:

    Happy birthday, Joe, keep up the great work!

  2. Andy Revkin says:

    Happy second half, Joe. It’s not so bad, really.

  3. Kota says:

    Happy B-Day Joe!! I already bought both books so I’ll tell you the only heart-warming story I know. I tried to order a Fiskers rotary mower from Lowes to help kick my fossil fuel addiction and get a little exercise too. They were sold out and on back order. I was pleasantly surprised to learn of this ‘grass roots’ rumbling.

  4. jcwinnie says:

    Happy, Happy, Jo-Jo. Keep those few remaining neurons firing.

  5. Wonhyo says:

    Happy, happy birthday, Joe!

  6. Jeff Huggins says:

    In Celebration, Some Other Context-Setting Dates (part 1)

    1808 – Goethe publishes Faust: The Tragedy Part One

    1824 – Joseph Fourier discusses what would later be called “the greenhouse effect”

    1836 – The French newspaper, La Presse, is the first newspaper to include paid advertising within its pages, allowing it to lower price, extend readership, and increase profitability (Wikipedia)

    August 27-28, 1859 – The first oil well strikes oil: the Drake oil well, in Titusville, Pennsylvania

    1896 – Svante Arrhenius is the first to predict that the production of carbon dioxide from the use of fossil fuels and other sources could or would warm the planet, drawing from the work of Fourier and science since then

    1900 (approx) – Scientist Knut Angstrom is the first to publish a modern infrared spectrum of carbon dioxide with two bands

    1902 – Rodin completes his first large-scale bronze cast of Le Penseur, i.e., The Thinker

    1908 – The Ford Model T is introduced. By this time, John D. Rockefeller was 69 years old, the Standard Oil Company was 38 years old, and it had been: 84 years since Joseph Fourier had first described the greenhouse effect; 12 years since Svante Arrhenius had predicted that carbon dioxide from the human combustion of fossil fuels could warm the planet; and 8 years since Knut Angstrom had published a modern infrared spectrum of carbon dioxide.

    1909 – Artist Evelyn De Morgan does The Worship of Mammon

    December 24, 1914 – John Muir dies

    1927 – The Radio Act of 1927 requires commercial broadcasters to operate in the “public interest, convenience and necessity”.

    1950 – Theodor Seuss Geisel—Dr. Seuss—publishes If I Ran the Zoo

  7. MapleLeaf says:

    Happy B’day Dr. Romm! All the best.

  8. Jeff Huggins says:

    In Celebration, Some Other Context-Setting Dates (part II, including the all-important year 1960, judging from the present occasion)

    July 9, 1955 – The Russell-Einstein Manifesto is issued by Bertrand Russell in London. The Manifesto had been signed by Bertrand Russell, Albert Einstein, Linus Pauling, and other leading scientific and humanitarian figures. Russell announces: “I am bringing the warning pronounced by the signatories to the notice of all the powerful governments of the world in the earnest hope that they may agree to allow their citizens to survive.” The Manifesto includes the statements: “We appeal as human beings to human beings: Remember your humanity, and forget the rest.”

    July 6, 1957 – A young Paul McCartney meets John Lennon and The Quarrymen

    February 21, 1958 – The Peace Symbol is developed, originally for use by the Direct Action Committee Against Nuclear War, and originally used in Britain’s nuclear disarmament movement. Bertrand Russell involved.

    October 15, 1958 – Edward R. Murrow gives his great speech at the RTNDA convention in Chicago.

    1960 – The Button-Down Mind of Bob Newhart is released

    August, 1960 – Timothy Leary, after recently joining Harvard, travels to Mexico and tries psilocybin mushrooms for the first time

    November, 1960 – Joan Baez’s first record for a large folk label is released. Not long before, she had done an album called Folksingers ‘Round Harvard Square, in 1958 or 1959 (I think). At that time, she was living in the Boston/Cambridge area, as her father was working at MIT.

    1960 – TV in 89% of American households

    1960 – The birth control pill

    Jan. 17, 1961 – President Eisenhower delivers his farewell address, cautioning the public to guard against undue influence by the “military-industrial complex”. Eisenhower calls for an “alert and knowledgeable citizenry”.

    Jan. 20, 1961 – In his Inaugural Address, President John F. Kennedy states, “Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country.”

    Feb., 1961 – A young Bob Dylan travels East and visits Woody Guthrie at Greystone Park Psychiatric Hospital.

    June 6, 1961 – Carl Jung dies

    August 4, 1961 – Barack Obama is born

    1962 – Andy Warhol’s Campbell’s Soup Cans

    February 11, 1963 – The Beatles record their first complete album, Please Please Me, in one day

    1963 – Cap’n Crunch cereal is introduced. The flavor had been developed by Pamela Low, a flavorist at Arthur D. Little.

    April 3, 1980 – Walter Cronkite introduces a segment on the Greenhouse Effect (and global warming) on the CBS Evening News

    Dec. 8, 1980 – John Lennon is killed in New York City

    January 20, 1981 – Ronald Reagan becomes President

    1981 – MTV

  9. mike roddy says:

    It gets better, Joe, trust me.

    Heartwarming story: After the tsunami, I was asked by Sri Lankan Americans to go to their country and attempt to win reconstruction contracts. It was only a few months after the disaster, and thousands of people were living in tents, many of whom had lost family members.

    This is a place that had been torn by civil war and economic implosion even before the tsunami.

    The pride, joy, and warmth of the people totally touched me, and showed that the human spirit may get us through the upcoming climate disasters better than I thought. I’m still friends with my Sri Lankan partner, who is a loyal and straight talking man- even though, for political reasons, we didn’t land a contract.

    There are three companies in Sri Lanka that provide distributed solar for houses. The components are: two small Sharp PV collectors, a battery, transformer/converter, and wiring. Cost: $600, far cheaper on a monthly basis than if they connected to the grid (nonexistent even in the outer parts of most towns). The solar providers arrange for bank microfinancing, and few clients default.

    We spend $25,000 for a home PV system here in the US, prior to rebates. Here’s what it powers in Sri Lanka: a fan, three flourescent bulbs, and a radio. The average Sri Lankan doesn’t own a TV, and air conditioning and refrigerators are out of the question. They socialize for entertainment, and grow produce or walk to the market for it every day.

    Yes, we need clean power, too. But do we really need three car garages, 2500 square feet, two flatscreens, central HVAC, giant refrigerators, and all the rest of it? My grandparents had none of that, and they were happier. So were the Sri Lankans.

  10. Peter Mizla says:

    happy Birthday Joe R.

    I am glad I found this great site- and feel very privileged to add my small contributions- so many very smart people here-wow! I did see you interviewed recently on MSNBC

  11. fj2 says:

    Joe, Happy Birthday! Recently bought “Straight Up” and “Hell and High Water” when it first came out.

    There are many sources for encouragement even though the current pace is glacial compared to what has to be done.

    The successes of the Center for American Progress Action Fund is one source of encouragement.

    You worked for Amory Lovins and the Rocky Mountain Institute so you know better, but the work there seems quite encouraging including scale-appropriate visions and conceptual frameworks balanced by direct technical application providing the tools for mitigation and adaptation to climate change.

    ” . . . abundance by design and to apply the framework of natural capitalism.”
    http://www.rmi.org/rmi/Vision+and+Mission

    Factor Ten Engineering
    “Now that nature is scarce, the next innovation revolution can raise natural resource productivity 10- to 100-fold.”
    http://www.10xe.org/

    Reinventing Fire(TM)
    http://www.rmi.org/rmi/ReinventingFire

    And, Lester R. Brown of the Earth Policy Institute including Plan B 4.0 is very important as are many others as you again, know better.

    http://earth-policy.org/

    John Todd’s “Living Machines” ideas and designs are long past due for broad dissemination.

    Of course, all this stuff must go viral for success.

    And, perhaps the best story yet would be a World War III effort to mitigate and adapt to humanity’s self-destructive tendencies, which is what this is all about; and, fighting with sonnets probably wouldn’t be a bad idea either.

  12. Wit's End says:

    Many Happy Returns, JR. Here is a heart and hearth-warming story – according to this NPR report I heard this morning, there actually exists a “tiny home movement” where do-it-yourselfers are connecting on the web to learn how to build abodes with recycled materials that are as small as 100 square feet, and cute, to boot!

    Transcript, video and photos here: http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=128109273

    Make a wish before you blow out the candles!

  13. Leif says:

    About 20 years ago my youngest son, 13 at the time, and I left Port Townsend for a journey thru the Inside Passage to Alaska. Our vessel, a salty 25 foot shallow draft pocket cruiser, Shadowfax. I had made the journey a number of times in my commercial fishing past but this time we wanted to gunk hole nooks and crannies passed and wondered about.

    Thru the San Juan Islands, Georgia Strait, Seymour Narrows, Johnstone Strait. Day by day we left civilization behind. Provisioning up at Alert Bay, we faced the open water of Queen Charlotte Sound and a 10 hour crossing. At this point we leave “civilization” and the vast majority of recreational boaters behind.

    Safely on the other side of this “swallow your gum” expanse of North West water we anchored in a tiny secure unnamed bay, barely big enough for our little vessel.
    Mirror flat, sunset peeking thru the trees, surf noise muffled to nonexistent, we are sitting around listening to the sounds of the evening. Bait fish are jumping, a few birds discussing the beautiful day gone by. Rustling in the bushes… an otter family makes an appearance.

    “Dad, this is just like a Bambi Movie”…

    Six weeks later we returned home.

    Happy birthday Joe, and some Bambi Movies to you and yours,

    Two Palms up,
    Leif

  14. Prokaryote says:

    Cheers Joe, and Happy Birthday!

    In Celebration, Some Other Context-Setting Dates

    In 1897, electric vehicles found their first commercial application in the U.S. as a fleet of electrical New York City taxis.

    In 1901, Porsche had created the first petroleum electric hybrid vehicle on record.

    In 1911, the New York Times stated that the electric car has long been recognized as “ideal” because it was cleaner, quieter and much more economical than gasoline-powered cars.

    Acceptance of electric cars was initially hampered by a lack of power infrastructure, but by 1912, many homes were wired for electricity, enabling a surge in the popularity of the cars. At the turn of the century, 40 percent of American automobiles were powered by steam, 38 percent by electricity, and 22 percent by gasoline. 33,842 electric cars were registered in the United States, and America became the country where electric cars had gained the most acceptance. Sales of electric cars peaked in 1912.

    In 1917, the first gasoline-electric hybrid car was released by the Woods Motor Vehicle Company of Chicago.

    (From the wikipedia)

  15. Congratulations, Joe! Characteristically blogging on, even if it’s your 50th birthday and it’s Sunday!

  16. Alex says:

    Happy Birthday, Joe! I turned 50 in December, 2009. Now, half-way to 51, I am 5150!

  17. Lucy says:

    Happy Birthday, you youngster!

    Here’s the New Urbanist video on Climate Change:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VGJt_YXIoJI

    enjoy

  18. Marion Delgado says:

    Happy Birthday, Joe!

    What did Wiki get wrong? Also, if it should be corrected, you might want to drop a note to the Facebook Joe Romm page (a “Like” page). It uses Wiki’s data.

    [JR: I was joking.]

  19. darth says:

    Happy birthday Joe! I’ve got another 6 years to hit that milestone. I’ve been reading your blog since you started and love it. Great commenters here as well. Keep it up and enjoy that daughter, kids are the best!

  20. PeterW says:

    Happy Birthday Joe. I hope you and your family have a great day.

    I bought and enjoyed your book. Is there any chance of an audio book version?

  21. Susan says:

    Joe, I taught a class about global warming to 11th and 12th graders this year. Thanks to you (and a few other vigilant bloggers) I always had the most updated information about the science and politics of global warming. You really helped educate some future voters. They could all pick out holes in denier arguments by the end of the class. Happy Birthday!

  22. Happy Birthday Joe. Take a good rest, enjoy, and come back refreshed.

  23. Jim Groom says:

    Happy Birthday Joe. I hope you enjoy your special day and come out again swinging. I’m 67 years young myself, but I can still remember when I turned 50 and AARP came calling. LOL

  24. Nancy says:

    Happy Birthday, Joe! A heartwarming story: a few nights ago, I was walking the dogs when a little neighbor came up to me and said he was fighting global warming. He started a ‘go green’ newsletter in his 4th grade class and he is going to a camp this summer to learn more about the environment. He had a huge smile on his face as he was talking and was very pleased that he is doing his part. We need more of his can-do spirit and optimism from our young people.

    Stay well!

    Nancy

  25. Ron Broberg says:

    Happy Birthday, Joe!
    Hopefully you aren’t reading this and are out and about today! ;-)
    Thanks for helping keep us informed about this and that.
    It is appeciated and I know it reaches out beyond this blog.

  26. Anne says:

    Welcome to the Half-A-Century-Old-&-Still-Breathin’ club, I joined in May, it’s more fun than it first looks!

    In the category of “You gotta laugh to keep from cryin’” — here ya go..

    “Here’s a little bit of good news. The Coast Guard says that BP is now catching up to 630,000 gallons of oil a day. The bad news is that they’re capturing it with ducks.” —Jimmy Fallon

    “This Tony Haywire guy, whatever his name is, he told the BBC on Sunday that he believes the new oil cap that they’ve installed will eventually capture the vast majority of oil spewing from the well. You know, if they could capture half the BS spewing from Tony Hayward, people would be thrilled.” —Jay Leno

    “BP CEO Tony Hayward said he would just like to get his life back. He wants to get his life back. You know, I say give him life plus 20.” —Jay Leno

    “A few days ago, Vice President Biden and Rahm Emanuel had a water gun fight during a party at Biden’s house. Meanwhile, Sasha and Malia spent the last few days trying to solve the BP oil crisis.” —Jimmy Fallon

    “BP wants Twitter to shut down a fake BP account that is mocking the oil company. In response, Twitter wants BP to shut down the oil leak that’s ruining the ocean.” —Jimmy Fallon

    “A new poll found that 43 percent of Americans think President Obama is doing a good job at handling the BP oil spill. Of course, the same poll found that 43 percent of Americans hate pelicans.” –Jimmy Fallon

    “In a new interview, BP’s CEO said that the Gulf Coast oil spill is relatively tiny compared to the ‘very big ocean.’ That’s like telling someone who’s just been shot not to worry about the bullet because they’re really, really fat.” –Jimmy Fallon

    “Scientists say they have developed a car that can run on water. The only catch is, the water has to come from the Gulf of Mexico.” -Jay Leno

    “I love this. On the news today, the CEO of British Petroleum says he believes the overall environmental impact of this oil spill will be very, very modest. Yeah. If you live in England!” –Jay Leno

    “BP has inserted a siphon tube into the well to suck up all the oil from the spill. And they’ve had a lot of experience in this area, by the way. This is the same tube they’ve been using to suck the money out of our wallets for the past 50 years.” –Jay Leno

    “What they’re going to do is they’re going to suck all of that oil that’s leaking into the gulf and pump it up into a tanker. Now the bad news is the tanker is the Exxon Valdez.” –David Letterman

    “In Louisiana, BP claims that it’s making progress with the leaking oil in the Gulf. They’re working on a plan to heat the Gulf up to 600 degrees and use it to fry chicken.” –Jimmy Kimmel

    “Have you been following the big oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico? Or as we call it now, the Dead Sea.” –David Letterman

    “And tar is washing up onto the beaches — big globs of tar. And people are saying, ‘Is that going to ruin our summer at the beach?’ No, of course not. You take the big blobs of tar and you use them to hold down your blanket.” –David Letterman

    “This oil spill in the Gulf is affecting everybody. In fact, when I went to lunch this weekend and ordered the sea bass, they asked if I wanted it regular or unleaded.” —David Letterman

    “British Petroleum said today that if this spill gets worse, they may soon have to start drilling for water.” —Jay Leno

    “Dick Cheney’s pals at Halliburton … say they’re going to do the underwater cement job to plug the hole. I thought, wait a minute, this is a mistake. Underwater cement? You call the mafia. Am I right?” —David Letterman

    “The oil company said it was the rig company’s fault. The rig company said it was Halliburton. And somehow, each time they passed the blame, Goldman Sachs made a hundred million dollars.” —Bill Maher

    “We’re still dropping things on it. This is like if your toilet overflowed and you tried to fix it by smashing it with a brick. Their next idea is to get the old lady from Titanic and she’s going to throw her jewelry at it.” —Bill Maher, on the oil spill in the Gulf

    “You folks been following the big British Petroleum oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico? I’m telling you, British Petroleum has put more birds in oil than Colonel Sanders.” —David Letterman

    “On Monday, British Petroleum promised to pay all necessary cleanup costs for this oil spill. And they said they will do it, no matter how much they have to raise gas prices.” —Jay Leno

    “They say the oil spill has the potential to kill more wildlife than a Sarah Palin hunting trip.” —David Letterman

    “This is the worst thing to happen to beaches since the Speedo.” —Bill Maher, on the oil spill on the Gulf of Mexico

    “The plan is to contain the oil slick with fire-retardant beams, and then set fire to the oil that pools on the surface. They say if it works there in the Gulf, they’re going to try it on the cast of Jersey Shore.” —Bill Maher

    “Bad news, it’s going to be a huge environmental disaster, the oil rig down there in the Gulf of Mexico. The good news is they think now that the oil spill will be diluted by the melting ice caps.” —David Letterman

  27. Christopher S. Johnson says:

    Super happy birthday to you! You are very, very much appreciated.

  28. Walter Meier says:

    Happy Birthday, Dr. Romm! I echo all the sentiments above.

  29. Edie Frederick says:

    Happy birthday Joe Romm! Know that your work is invaluable. Be very good to yourself. Life goes on longer
    than some imagine. A local to global perspective & outreach supports vital life. My globally heart-warming
    story is still under the radar. You will among the first to be apprised, the sooner with a less public link.
    Many happy returns of the day!

  30. Frank says:

    Wish there was digital book available for my ipad

  31. Prokaryote says:

    “Wish there was digital book available”

    I second that – pdf version.

  32. Drew Jones says:

    Here’s to 50 more!!!

  33. BobSmith says:

    Happy Birthday

    Keep up the good work.

  34. Wit's End says:

    Anne, I loved your joke list, thank you!

    Another happy:

    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/06/100625185428.htm

    “The small number of scientists who are unconvinced that human beings have contributed significantly to climate change have far less expertise and prominence in climate research compared with scientists who are convinced, according to a study led by Stanford researchers.”

    “We really wanted to bring the expertise dimension into this whole discussion,” Anderegg said. “We hope to put to rest the notion that keeps being repeated in the media and by some members of the public that ‘the scientists disagree’ about whether human activity is contributing to climate change.”

  35. catman306 says:

    Beyond Phifty! Best wishes and good luck to you, your family, and your important work. You’re still running on all 8 billion neurons. (Or more!)

    Thanks for creating this website that has the highest possible signal to noise ratio and has attracted such brilliant readers and commenters.

    Thanks, everybody!

  36. paulina says:

    Happy B-day Joe!
    Grattis på födelsedagen!

    Thanks for all the important work you do
    and for bringing people together,
    despite ourselves.

    -Paulina

  37. Andy says:

    Happy birthday Joe. I am a relative newcomer to this blog but have found it to be one of the most useful and informative resources on the web. I really appreciate your work!!

    All the best,

    Andy

  38. Stuart says:

    Happy Birthday Joe! You are providing an important service with this blog, thank you.

  39. Mike O'Brien says:

    Hi, Joe–

    We just got home from the Sunday Parkway, one of four this summer where thousands of Portlanders enjoy cycling on neighborhood streets closed to auto traffic, a brief vision of our future.

    Happy birthday!

    Mike

  40. Rabid Doomsayer says:

    Happy Birthday Joe.

  41. David B. Benson says:

    Happy B’day, technical or not.

  42. Rob R. says:

    Happy Birthday Joe!

    I think someone at RC mentioned recently that many of the prominent denialists are really quite old and that reminded me of a quote that I read from Max Planck: “A scientific truth does not triumph by convincing it’s opponents and making them see the light, but rather because it’s opponents eventually die and a new generation grows up that is familiar with it.” Let’s hope that you can prove that Max Planck wasn’t entirely correct.

    By the way Joe I don’t think you’re old since you’re younger than me. “Power to the youth!”

  43. Marc says:

    Happy Birthday Joe! Thanks to you and your blog, I’m riding my bike, writing my senators, eating less beef, insulating my house, taking the train instead of flying, and spreading the word. Keep up the great work!

  44. In my experience, the 50′s are about setting aside false optimism (phew, what a relief), some inspiration towards that path from Wendell Berry, Leavings…

    Let hopelessness
    Shrink us to our proper size.
    Without it we are half as large
    And the world
    Is twice as large. My small
    Place grows immense as I walk
    Upon it without hope.

    Happy Birthday and many thanks for keeping those neurons firing!

  45. Roger says:

    Hi Joe,
    Happy Birthday! We at GWEN send all of the above kind remarks, with interest (as from the bank–if you’re lucky)! I’ll have more later!
    Warm regards,
    Roger

  46. Mark Shapiro says:

    Happy Birthday — and many more!!

  47. Roger says:

    Dear Joe,
    Your birthday is officially over, but notice that I did get the greeting to you in time!

    Because I try to save the best for last, I usually end up reading (and commenting upon) Climate Progress quite late. As a bonus, I get to read most everyone’s comments too.

    So here are a few observations, and then maybe a climate story or two.

    Observation #1: After reviewing your astoundingly strong qualifications in Wikipedia, and then thinking about your views on climate change, and then further considering the soundness of all the other worrisome climate science I’ve read, and then, finally observing what little we’re doing to react—well, I wonder, is this all just a bad dream?

    I mean, it can’t be true, can it, that we’ve survived everything that Mother Nature, and our fellow life, could throw at us for billions, millions, or thousands of years (depending on when you want to ‘start the clock’ on human evolution/history), including (so far) ICBM’s with nuclear warheads, etc.—only to slowly and calmly make ourselves extinct now, with only a few people aware of what’s happening, despite tons of clear evidence?

    Observation #2: From the above comments, one gets a sense that many of your readers, or at least the ones who comment, are 50 or beyond. Perhaps this is to be expected, given the greater difficulty that many younger people seem to have dealing with the grim reality. We all have bouts with denial, but it logically would run stronger in those who are starting a career and/or a family. Not to mention the added demands on their time.

    Stories to follow later on…

    Roger

  48. Even says:

    Happy Birthday and best wishes from Beijing!

  49. Richard Brenne says:

    Happy Birthday Joe, keep up your incredibly important work!

    And this is a good time to have a mid-life crisis, because then you’ll live to be at least 100.

    When your daughter reaches the age you are now, no matter what else has happened your daughter will be incredibly proud of you.

  50. Esop says:

    Happy Birthday and best wishes from Norway!
    Keep up the fantastic work!

  51. Dan says:

    Happy b-day. I’ll buy your book the moment you make it available in digital format. Tks.

  52. Raul says:

    On Finding Beauty’s #45 link there is a nice comment
    about the market should be a servant to the public.

  53. ken levenson says:

    Happy Birthday Joe! (Got the book and recommend it often.)

  54. Doug Bostrom says:

    Belated Happy Birthday.

    Heartwarming story: Last year my son and I assembled and installed a solar hot water system over the course of several months. This involved a lot of enjoyable teamwork including planning, other assembly details including the fun of watching solder flow into plumbing joints. Now much of our hot water is fusion-heated and my son gets to think about his accomplishment every time he takes a shower.

  55. Anna Haynes says:

    H.B., and please tell your parents thank you from me.

  56. Karen S. says:

    My story: I’m sitting on a 24-foot sailboat in a small coastal village in western Canada, using a solar panel-powered laptop and a distant wireless connection to send you belated birthday wishes and congratulations for being in the top blogs of all time. The other half of the story is that I’m still checking CP whenever the chance presents itself because I can’t NOT check it–a sign of hopeless addiction to the info feed if there ever was one. Please keep up the energetic coverage, and happy belated birthday.

  57. Roger says:

    Hi Joe,

    Since we’ve got your wonderful books, here’s my promised story, about Earth Day, President Obama, our precious climate and YOU!

    On Earth Day (April 22, 2010), some friends of GWEN traveled from as far away as California (thanks, Jeff H.) to demonstrate in front of the White House. We were asking President Obama to educate misinformed Americans about climate change, and to lead the battle against it. We delivered a petition with hundreds of signatures from concerned citizens from around the world, and held a huge banner saying “Obama—Please Lead on Climate!”

    Our “Please Educate and Lead on Climate Change” petition continues to be among the most popular on Change.org. We now have some 3400 signatures—more than a third of our goal of 10,000. Each time a person signs, an email of the petition is sent to the president, encouraging him to act—to educate Americans so that they can make informed choices about their future, and the future of everyone on the planet. Please, more signatures are needed here: http://www.change.org/global_warming_education_network.

    After also demonstrating at the US Chamber of Commerce, to protest their climate change disinformation campaign, we had a pleasant group dinner with you (see the end of Gail’s great blog: http://witsendnj.blogspot.com/2010/04/wits-end-goes-to-washington.html). I remember you mentioning your planned speech at Sunday’s huge Earth Day rally on the National Mall. We agreed to cheer loudly when you mentioned Climate Progress, so we did—even using a small portable bullhorn so that we might be heard above the 100,000!

    I don’t know that our voices stood out, but you can clearly see us (at min. 1.22-1.25, and again at the end), in the front and center, holding our orange and red signs (asking for US Climate Leadership), plus a 3-foot diameter Earth Ball (thanks Shaw T, and Geneva B.)! (Video at: http://climateprogress.org/2010/06/20/earth-day-fathers-speech/#more-28057.) Yes, it’s hard to hear our cheering until the very end, but we were with you every second.

    Bottom line: It seems that we might finally see some more aggressive leadership from our president. I certainly hope so! Maybe our demonstrations, our letters, our emails, our calls, our petitions, and everything else we in the climate-concerned community have done in the past several years—are finally starting to have an impact. It’s about time.

    To the extent that we enjoy some success in preserving a livable climate for ourselves, our kids, and beyond, we will owe a huge debt of gratitude to the climate movement’s inspirational leaders, not the least of which are Jim Hansen, Bill McKibben, and you!

    Once again, warm wishes for many happy returns of your birthday,

    Roger, ‘Mossy’ and Team GWEN

  58. Anonymous says:

    Happiest Birthday Joe!

    Your blog gives me the content I need when I’m out and about. My neighbors always get what they can understand, because CP posts so much comprehensible material. And I’m often there with the best means of communication, because you discuss communication frequently and model it so well and so consistently.

    My neighbors are from a dozen different nations. They’re taking the messages I relay from CP to their communities. I’ve got one setting up a “Green” section of the local Urban League!

    Hope you enjoyed a great cake and wonderful time with friends and family. You warm hearts even when reality is too much.

    Dan

  59. Leif says:

    Karen S: I did not realize your vessel is 24 feet. When you get back to town I want a show and tell. I would like to reciprocate with a show and tell my 25 footer, Shadowfax, that I took to Alaska and my current 29 footer, Raven.

  60. mark says:

    happy birthday, and thanks.