Back in early September, and for the 2nd consecutive year, GreenSportsBlog ran its “Who Will Have A Better Season, Gang Green or The Green Movement” fall preview. Gang Green being my New York Jets. I spent 1,304 words to lay out, in, I thought, insightful detail, why the Green Movement AND the Jets would have successful autumns. I even said Gang Green would “sneak into the playoffs.” Quoting former Colts coach Jim Mora: “Playoffs? PLAYOFFS!?!” Well, while the Green Movement has had strong moments this fall, the Jets have just been AWFUL (1-7 as of this writing). If the Green Movement can’t beat Gang Green this season, then humanity is in worse shape than the most pessimistic of climate scientists would imagine.
Not to worry, fans of Humanity As We Know It. The Green Movement has had a MUCH BETTER early fall than Gang Green.
That’s faint praise, I know, but I’m here to tell you that, despite September 2014 being the hottest month since such records have been recorded (1880), despite another draft report from the IPCC warning about the “irreversible impacts” of climate change, I’d give the Green Movement, in NFL terms, a 5-3 record at this point. Let’s see if you agree:
- A crowd estimated at 400,000 walked and chanted through the streets of New York City at the People’s Climate March on September 21, demanding the UN General Assembly (in session that week) and the US government take meaningful action on climate change. Much less publicized here were the 2,000+ other marches the same day all over the world, from Melbourne to Johannesburg, from Rio de Janeiro to New Delhi. Did all this lead to immediate action at the UN and elsewhere? No. But it showed the political leaders that serious, bold actions will be expected in the coming years, starting with the 2015 UN Climate Change Conference in Paris next December, at which a successor to the 1997 Kyoto Protocol on carbon emissions will be expected/demanded.
- Cleantech markets continued with strong performances through Q2-Q3 2014, from solar to electric vehicles (EVs), from LED Lighting installations (up 435% year-over-year!) to the steep, early-stage-but-real growth curve seen in the commercial energy storage world.
- While a national climate policy is, sadly, not in the short term cards, some exciting things are happening in the states. And not only in Blue ones. Continuing with Cleantech, Rentricity, an innovative, New York City-based in-pipe hydropower clean energy company (it harnesses excess pressure within water mains and uses it to generate clean electric power. How cool is that??) earlier this month started its first project in a deep Red state–Idaho, after having success in Blue bastions like California, (Purple, really) New Hampshire, New York, Pennsylvania and Vermont.
- The intersection of Green and Sports, as covered by this blog all fall, has been vibrant indeed. If I had to pick one highlight, it would be the opening of the LEED Gold Certified Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, CA, home of the 49ers and site of Super Bowl 50 in February, 2016. The NFL, by far the National Sport, has had negative story (domestic violence) after negative story (commissioner Roger Goodell’s handling of domestic violence) after negative story (more awful news about concussions). The opening of Levi’s Stadium, while of a much, much lower profile than Rice/Goodell/Concussions) at least gives the league the chance to show it gets it on green–at least a bit.
Schematic which demonstrates how Rentricity’s exciting clean energy generation (via water-flow-in-water-main system) works. Rentricity, which this month started its first project in a Red state (Idaho) is one of many cleantech startups and early growth companies that is enjoying a strong autumn. (Image Credit: Cleantech Open).
As to the Jets, here are the positives:
- They have a really good kicker, Nick Folk, and two, young, excellent defensive linemen, Muhammad Wilkerson and Sheldon Richardson.
- Richardson has an excellent sense of humor.
- If they keep losing and have a 1-15, 2-14 season, they could have the 1st pick of the 2015 NFL Draft, which means they could be in line to pick University of Oregon Duck quarterback Marcus Mariota, the “It QB” in college this season. Here is his 2013 highlight reel. “Suck For A Duck” will become the Jets fans anthem the rest of the season.
- That’s about it.
Marcus Mariota, QB, University of Oregon Ducks, the object of Jets’ fans “Suck For A Duck” anthem. (Photo Credit: USA Today)
I’m not going to go through the negatives–you’ve got the Daily News, NY Post, and a gazillion blogs, etc. for that. OK, I lied. Here are two:
- They will start to win games over the last 8, meaning they will get a lower draft pick, meaning they won’t have a chance to pick Mariota. You know this will happen.
- Or they will Suck For A Duck, will draft Mariota and the Duck will turn out to Suck at the NFL level.
Diehard Jets fan Mike Greenberg of ESPN Radio’s “Mike and Mike” morning talk show speaks for the rest of us Gang Groan-afflicted souls in this LOL clip, in which Hall of Fame receiver Cris Carter advises “Greeny” to visit his therapist, and, in fact, offers to pay for the first session! You have to do some work to get to the clip–scroll down to the 5th story (the first 4 give you all you need to know about the Jets ineptitude–I’d skip those), entitled “C’mon Man: Carter Calls Out Greenberg”. Then you have to sit through a 30 second commercial (hey, this is ESPN). Believe me, it is worth it!
I used to consider going to a therapist when I got down about climate change. But, despite the vastness of the problems, I’m bullish (not polly-anna-ish, but bullish) about our ability to reach potential game breaking solutions, some of which were detailed above. No climate-related therapy for me, Jets-related therapy for Greeny. Green Movement a clear winner over Gang Green. Nuf ced.
* The Raiders (0-7) are having a worse season than Gang Green. In fact they are the only club the Jets beat this season.
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