I agree with the article linked above that this surge is a bubble because cynical-me thinks this whole 'concern' for the environment is just a passing fad and will fade away...right around 2008, when the next US government takes office, signs the Kyoto agreement, and stops propounding that Global Warming is an unproven theory! In some ways, the attention this topic has received has been a backlash at the Bush administration's absolutely radical "f----the-environment, f--Kyoto-protocol, f--whatever-else-the-rest-of-the-world believes, and put a cloud of doubt over everything scientists say about global warming" attitude.
"As a people, we can either be defined by what we consume, wear, and drive- or by what we honor, value, and save." -- T.A. Barron
Not to say this is not a matter of great importance but it is too convenient and easy not to make an effort... and the pessimist in me tells me that people at large do not honor, value, or want to save much! (Note: I believe that though there are many that are making great efforts to raise awareness about the topic, there are only a few that genuinely care about the topic enough to make lifestyle changes to ensure they leave as lttle a footprint as they can as they pass through this world, while, I fear there are millions of other people who just do not care enough... and continue to "make thermodynamic whoopee with atomic energy and fossil fuel" and "trash the joint", in the words of Kurt Vonnegut.
And so, here we are ---- its 2007 and the concern about global warming has suddenly spawned various fads and engendered buzz-words like "sustainability" and "green buildings" or "eco-imagination" over the past 2-3 years as various groups and major companies join the bandwagon. A lot of it is what they call 'green-washing' - indulged in by those that are just riding the 'green' bandwagon to sound or look good ..er..green!
Like a recent NYT article said: "Be It Ever So Homespun, There’s Nothing Like Spin"
That said... for the time being, global warming and 'green efforts', with all their political and business ramifications, will continue to be in the limelight: be it in construction, energy conservation, reducing fossil fuel dependence
by tapping into renewable and alternative energy sources around the world, or even planning the Oscars! This emphasis on all-things-'green' is no doubt thanks to Gore's tireless efforts and his timely documentary, which have providing a much needed push to the efforts of various scientists and other organizations that have been raising this issue for some years now. (Seemingly, the cause has gotten a fresh boost of energy after the awards won by The Inconvenient Truth at the Oscars over the weekend. Supreme irony then... - a whole lot of the brouhaha surrounding 'green' sometimes seems as hollow, superficial, and hypocritical -- like the Oscars and Hollywood, which the Oscars celebrates.)
Note (lest my above rant be mis-interpreted): Global warming IS and should be a matter of great concern for all of us.
Related: Its a surprise right-wingers did not go after Gore earlier. All the attention he and his cause have been getting surely rankled them no end... am surprised it took an Oscar for them to get back at him! :)
Reference: My compilation post with various links on Global Warming and the Environment and also Oil Politics and Energy Alternatives.