Planktos/KlimaFa Call for Emergency Green Action Alliance to Counter High Tech, High Cost Climate Solution Offensives

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Chicago Green Festival's official carbon offset sponsors challenge industrial lobby/media push to trivialize climatic and ecological potency of ocean and forest renewal.

International ecorestoration firm Planktos was delighted to be chosen as the Chicago Green Festival's official Carbon Neutral Agency this year, but soon decided that erasing the huge Earth Day event's carbon footprint was not enough. The ocean restoration company and its EU climate parks partner KlimaFa now hope to use this 30,000-visitor GreenFest to start building an alliance for a more ecological, less industrial suite of global warming solutions.

Planktos members claim the media and government's current disproportionate focus on engineering answers to climate change both ignores more powerful green solutions and puts vital ecosystems at intolerable risk.

According to Planktos/KlimaFa CEO Russ George, "Anyone working closely with the ocean is constantly reminded that worst effect of excess CO2 is not global warming, but the deadly acidification and micronutrient starvation of plant plankton in the sea. This is threatening the source of half the planet's oxygen and the marine food chain is collapsing so quickly that some scientific reports project the loss of all food fish by 2048. The phytoplankton that nourish everything are already down over 50% in the central Pacific and the plankton-dependent krill which feed fisheries, sea birds and whales are down over 80% in the southern oceans. This is not a catastrophe waiting to happen but one that is well underway."

Planktos' ecological economist Julia Clark also highlights the climatic stakes, "If our goal is achieving an 80% reduction in global CO2 levels by 2050, ocean plankton restoration alone could annually reduce our emission surplus by 3~4 billion tons and get us half way there. It could also create enough carbon credit revenue to finance source reduction breakthroughs as well. Unfortunately these green solutions generate little interest in our media or policy councils where the predominant lobby emphasis is on high cost, high tech schemes."

Besides the media's continuing disregard of ocean peril and plankton power, CO2-absorbing climate forestry is also now under attack. There have been hundreds of absurd headlines around world this month suggesting temperate countries could slow global warming by cutting down all their trees. These reports are largely based on simplistic computer models which compare the heat absorbing darkness of mature forests to the reflective brightness of barren land or snow. Many environmental scientists have pointed out the critical flaws in this one-dimensional analysis but their refutations get no media play.

Government policy has also recklessly ignored low tech, low cost green solutions. Although the US Office of Science's set up a project office to consider all forms of carbon sequestration, it benignly neglected ocean and forest biomass studies when they were overwhelmed by lobby interest from the deep-pocketed CO2 injection industry. Of the hundred plus current members of the National Carbon Sequestration Leadership Forum, virtually all advocate slow industrial answers over more immediate, affordable and ecologically beneficial approaches.

Planktos' George likens the global CO2 crisis to a classical triage situation that requires an urgent strategy to save as many lives as fast as possible, which means attending to the worst stricken ecosystems first. "Half of the answer of course is radically reducing CO2 emissions, but the other more urgent half is reducing the deadly surplus that is already here and rescuing its worst casualties. The latter course is not only merciful, it is rational since reviving seas and trees will greatly help to solve the climate problem, too. It's truly sad that we still don't have an audible constituency for this common sense green approach, but that is what we are hoping to build at the Green Festivals this year."

In addition to rallying support for a new trees & seas climate coalition at the April 21~22 Chicago Greenfest, the Planktos/KlimaFa team will be offering visitors the greenest carbon offsets and ecorestoration campaign materials at their festival booth #1005.

Mr. George will also be conducting a Thursday luncheon workshop on climate strategy at the Chicago Green Business conference and introducing keynote speaker Ray Anderson as well as leading Sunday's Green Festival climate change workshop and introducing main stage speaker Dennis Kucinich.

For more information on supporting green climate initiatives and ecorestoration, please visit Planktos/KlimaFa at the Chicago Green Festival (http://www.greenfestivals.org) or online at http://www.planktos.com and http://www.klimafa.com

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DAVID KUBIAK
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