A little green goes far

Whether or not mankind is contributing to global warming can certainly be debated.

Al Gore and his folks would have you believe driving that big SUV is going to kill us all someday. Others, like Birmingham meteorologist James Spann, argue it&8217;s awfully presumptive to say humans have the power to alter the Earth&8217;s environment, which naturally has periods of high and low temperatures.

It&8217;s a debate bound to continue through the new year.

Regardless of your opinion, this environment is the only one we&8217;ve got, and we need to remember that in 2008.

Just a quick look back at top stories from the Reporter last year shows some disturbing trends here on the local level.

Failed air quality tests and water restrictions throughout our county should serve as alarm bells that we must take steps now to limit our impact on the environment, while conserving our valuable resources.

There is a reason an ozone test site in Helena continually collects too much of the dangerous toxic, which studies have shown causes breathing problems.

Big businesses (the No. 1 polluter) should evaluate their operations and implement cleaner

measures.

But you can help too.

Individually, it would be hard to make any real difference, but collectively, we surely can.

Parts of our county almost ran out of water this summer and without substantial rainfall, this year could be as bad or worse. Small acts of conservation like a shorter shower or running a full dishwasher do add up.

Let&8217;s all see what small changes we can make this year to help our neighbors and Mother Earth