Wednesday, July 16, 2008

I'm Just Keepin' It Weird, Yo: Heading to Austin for Netroots Nation

The Green Miles is at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport right now. I’m on my way to Austin for Netroots Nation, a blogger convention (formerly known as YearlyKos).

The second leg of this trip will be my fourth flight in five days. I take the train or drive as much as I can on personal and business trips to keep my carbon footprint to a minimum, but some flights are unavoidable. While doing the jet-setter thing, I do what I can to at least minimize waste, bringing my reusable coffee mug and downloading articles to read rather than buying newspapers and magazines. I also ask flight attendants if they recycle cans and paper, if not taking them with me into the airport, which usually offer recycling these days.

From an environmental perspective, I actually find the view from high up to be heartening. For all the wide highways and sprawling cul-de-sacs scarring the suburban landscapes as you take off and land, there remain vast expanses of forest and rolling hills untouched by development. And from 20,000 feet, it’s nice notice that among of the few identifiable man-made structures below are baseball diamonds.

I’ll be spending most of my time at Netroots Nation on the job for the National Wildlife Federation, but I’ll try to post interesting tidbits here as time permits. Considering how much time liberal blogs tend to spend focused on political races and Iraq, I was pleasantly surprised to see how many environmental sessions are on the agenda.

And with the Democratic National Convention putting so much effort into going green, I’ll be watching to see how well Netroots minimizes its environmental impact. Will they give me a big bag full of junk when I get there? Will the convention site and hotel offer recycling?

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