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Politics of Global Warming

Tyger

Paranormal Adept
Yes, folks, this is being reported by a FOX News outlet. The times they are a-changin'. :cool: Keep in mind that Global Warming is no longer an object of derision by the disinformation folks (only those holding onto long-outdated press releases are maintaining that fiction). Global Warming is so obvious in everyone's everyday lives that it's acknowledged, though the anthropogenic part is now the main focus of the denial.

4th warmest start to November on record
LINK
: 4th warmest start to November on record
TEXT: "KMSP - While no daily records were broken during the first week of November, it was one of the warmest starts to the month ever. It was the 4th warmest first few days of the month in the last 120+ years. You can see the official measuring sites below and their respective rank when it comes to warmest ever…What do you think?


upload_2015-11-7_11-52-32.jpeg

upload_2015-11-7_11-52-32.jpeg

"You can also see though that we aren’t the only ones starting off mild. Both Madison and Milwaukee have experienced their warmest start to November ever. Not all that surprising considering the combination of the 6 days of the month has averaged 9 to 15 degrees above normal for a dozen states or so from South Dakota and Nebraska, eastward through Minnesota, the Great Lakes, and down into the Appalachians. What do you think?

upload_2015-11-7_11-52-32.jpeg

"While temperatures are now moderating a bit, we can still expect at or above average temperatures heading through your weekend and much of next week."
 
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aNorthernSoul

Professional Breather
I am going to say this as slowly as one can in text-language: I.Am.Not.In.A.Debate. Please go to one of the debate threads. Okay? By your own admission you do not read posts nor watch videos, so your posting on this thread comes perilously close to being trolling.
So you are saying that you want to be able to post your propaganda without being challenged or questioned?

What I actually said was that I don't finish articles or videos if they are suspect or BS.

Challenging information or a stance is not trolling.
 

Tyger

Paranormal Adept
So you are saying that you want to be able to post your propaganda without being challenged or questioned?
It's not my propaganda. It's what's out there. Like it or not, it's not going to go away.

One more time: this is not the thread to challenge or question - it's just an information thread, and it's not about the science, per se. It's about the politics. Go to a debate thread - can you read those words? You can easily enough take the link that offends you and copy-and-paste it onto the debate thread and there dice-and-splice to your heart's content. Sounds like a plan - why not do it?
What I actually said was that I don't finish articles or videos if they are suspect or BS.
I see. I can relate to the strategy.
Challenging information or a stance is not trolling.
It is when you are doing it on the wrong thread. This is an information thread - not a debate thread about the science.

In my full post I said this as well: If you do go to a debate thread be certain to actually engage. Don't make statements and expect them to stand. You must back-up what you are claiming, otherwise you stand in a self-created reality. You must also absorb what is being said by someone else and not dismiss out-of-hand. You need to back up your claims. Just not on this thread.

Just to be clear, I have a fairly comprehensive background (imo - though I suppose there may still be some curve balls out there I haven't come across) in the denier arguments and modus operandi. One just has to set aside a full weekend afternoon to read all the climate change debate threads on this site to get an education in that. The difference between the science and the denier stuff is that the denier stuff (tactics and all, like the gutter language and the ad hominem attacks) doesn't change. The science does change (in fact) - it moves and shifts as new research changes the landscape. It's a living conversation - not a battleground, as deniers like to make it out to be.

Fact is, you and your children will have a better world because there were people who understood the science and worked to off-set the worst of the catastrophe coming down the pike at us. Fact also is, you and your children are already cooked because by some estimations (many, in fact) the tipping point has been past. We are already on track for a 2'C rise by the year 2035, if not sooner. Sea levels have already risen significantly - ask the Dutch. We have work to do. With the information at hand it behooves us to act. When we get more information, we will incorporate it and adjust accordingly. But we will not sit still and say 'oh woe is us'.
 
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aNorthernSoul

Professional Breather
This is the freewheeling chitchat area of the forum. That's a pretty good place to chit chat in whatever freewheeling manner I see fit.

And exactly how will my children and I benefit from taxing something due to a misrepresentation of something?
 

Tyger

Paranormal Adept
Exxon Mobil Investigated for Possible Climate Change Lies by New York Attorney General
By JUSTIN GILLIS and CLIFFORD KRAUSSNOV. 5, 2015
LINK: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/11/06/s...t_na_20151105&nlid=54852892&ref=headline&_r=0
TEXT: "The New York attorney general has begun an investigation of Exxon Mobil to determine whether the company lied to the public about the risks of climate change or to investors about how such risks might hurt the oil business. According to people with knowledge of the investigation, Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman issued a subpoena Wednesday evening to Exxon Mobil, demanding extensive financial records, emails and other documents.

The investigation focuses on whetherstatements the company made to investors about climate risks as recently as this year were consistent with the company’s own long-running scientific research. The people said the inquiry would include a period of at least a decade during which Exxon Mobil funded outside groups that sought to undermine climate science, even as its in-house scientists were outlining the potential consequences — and uncertainties — to company executives.

“We unequivocally reject the allegations that Exxon Mobil has suppressed climate change research,” Mr. Cohen said, adding that the company had funded mainstream climate science since the 1970s, had published dozens of scientific papers on the topic and had disclosed climate risks to investors. Mr. Schneiderman’s decision to scrutinize the fossil fuel companies may well open a new legal front in the climate change battle.

The people with knowledge of the New York case also said on Thursday that, in a separate inquiry, Peabody Energy, the nation’s largest coal producer, had been under investigation by the attorney general for two years over whether it properly disclosed financial risks related to climate change. That investigation was not previously reported, and has not resulted in any charges or other legal action against Peabody. Vic Svec, a Peabody senior vice president, said in a statement, “Peabody continues to work with the New York attorney general’s office regarding our disclosures, which have evolved over the years.”

The Exxon inquiry might expand further to encompass other oil companies, according to the people with knowledge of the case, though no additional subpoenas have been issued to date. The people spoke on the condition of anonymity, saying they were not authorized to speak publicly about investigations that could produce civil or criminal charges. The Martin Act, a New York state law, confers on the attorney general broad powers to investigate financial fraud.

To date, lawsuits trying to hold fuel companies accountable for damage they are causing to the climate have failed in the courts, but most of those have been pursued by private plaintiffs. Attorneys general for other states could join in Mr. Schneiderman’s efforts, bringing far greater investigative and legal resources to bear on the issue. Some experts see the potential for a legal assault on fossil fuel companies similar to the lawsuits against tobacco companies in recent decades, which cost those companies tens of billions of dollars in penalties. “This could open up years of litigation and settlements in the same way that tobacco litigation did, also spearheaded by attorneys general,” said Brandon L. Garrett, a professor at the University of Virginia School of Law. “In some ways, the theory is similar — that the public was misled about something dangerous to health. Whether the same smoking guns will emerge, we don’t know yet.”

In the 1950s and ’60s, tobacco companies financed internal research showing tobacco to be harmful and addictive, but mounted a public campaign that said otherwise and helped fund scientific research later shown to be dubious. In 2006, the companies were found guilty of “a massive 50-year scheme to defraud the public.”

The history at Exxon Mobil appears to differ, in that the company published extensive research over decades that largely lined up with mainstream climatology. Thus, any potential fraud prosecution might depend on exactly how big a role company executives can be shown to have played in directing campaigns of climate denial, usually by libertarian-leaning political groups.

For several years, advocacy groups with expertise in financial analysis have been warning that fossil fuel companies might be overvalued in the stock market, since the need to limit climate change might require that much of their coal, oil and natural gas be left in the ground.

The people with knowledge of the case said the attorney general’s investigation of Exxon Mobil began a year ago, focusing initially on what the company had told investors about the risks that climate change might pose to its business. News reporting in the last eight months added impetus to the investigation, they said.

In February, several news organizations, including The New York Times, reported that a Smithsonian researcher who had published papers questioning established climate science, Wei-Hock Soon, had received extensive funds from fossil fuel companies, including Exxon Mobil, without disclosing them. That struck some experts as similar to the activities of tobacco companies.

More recently, Inside Climate News and The Los Angeles Times have reported that Exxon Mobil was well aware of the risks of climate change from its own scientific research, and used that research in its long-term planning for activities like drilling in the Arctic, even as it funded groups from the 1990s to the mid-2000s that denied serious climate risks. Mr. Cohen, of Exxon, said on Thursday that the company had made common cause with such groups largely because it agreed with them on a policy goal of keeping the United States out of a global climate treaty called the Kyoto Protocol. “We stopped funding them in the middle part of the past decade because a handful of them were making the uncertainty of the science their focal point,” Mr. Cohen said. “Frankly, we made the call that we needed to back away from supporting the groups that were undercutting the actual risk” of climate change. “We recognize the risk,” Mr. Cohen added. He noted that Exxon Mobil, after an acquisition in 2009, had become the largest producer of natural gas in the United States.

Because natural gas creates far less carbon dioxide than coal when burned for electricity, the company expects to be a prime beneficiary of President Obama’s plan to limit emissions. Exxon Mobil has also endorsed a tax on emissions as a way to further reduce climate risks.

Whether Exxon Mobil began disclosing the business risks of climate change as soon as it understood them is likely to be a major focus of the New York case. The people with knowledge of the case said the attorney general’s investigators were poring through the company’s disclosure filings made since the 1970s, but were focusing in particular on recent statements to investors. Exxon Mobil has been disclosing such risks in recent years, but whether those disclosures were sufficient has been a matter of public debate.

Last year, for example, the company warned investors of intensifying efforts by governments to limit emissions. “These requirements could make our products more expensive, lengthen project implementation times and reduce demand for hydrocarbons, as well as shift hydrocarbon demand toward relatively lower-carbon sources such as natural gas,” the company said at the time.

But in another recent report, Exxon Mobil essentially ruled out the possibility that governments would adopt climate policies stringent enough to force it to leave its reserves in the ground, saying that rising population and global energy demand would prevent that. “Meeting these needs will require all economic energy sources, especially oil and natural gas,” it said.

Wall Street analysts on Thursday were uncertain whether the case would inflict long-term damage on the company, which has already suffered from a plunge in commodity prices. “This is not good news for Exxon Mobil or Exxon Mobil shareholders,” said Fadel Gheit, a senior oil company analyst at Oppenheimer & Company. “It’s a negative, though how much damage there will be to reputation or performance is very hard to say.”
 

Tyger

Paranormal Adept
A Range of Opinions on Climate Change at Exxon Mobil
By THE NEW YORK TIMES NOV. 6, 2015
LINK: http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/...global-warming-statements-climate-change.html
TEXT: "The New York attorney general’s investigation of Exxon Mobil will seek to determine whether the company lied to the public and investors about the risks of climate change. The investigation will focus on whether statements the company made to the public about climate risks were consistent with its own long-running scientific research. Here are some examples of statements made by the company – including executives and its own scientists – over the years.
  1. 1980
    Internal Exxon Document
    From a paper titled, “Exxon Research and Engineering Company’s Technological Forecast CO2 Effect,” by H. Shaw and P.P. McCall: “Projections of scientists active in the area indicate that the contribution of deforestation, which may have been substantial in the past, will diminish in comparison to the expected rate of fossil fuel combustion in the future. A number of scientists have postulated that a doubling of the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere could occur as early as 2035. Calculations recently completed at Exxon Research indicate that using the energy projections from the CONAES (Committee on Nuclear and Alternative Energy Systems) study and the World Energy Conference, a doubling of atmospheric CO2 can occur at about 2060.
  2. 1989
    Duane G. Levine, Exxon’s Manager of Science and Strategy Development
    A year after the NASA climate scientist James Hansen warned Congress that global warming was already occurring, an Exxon scientist made a presentation on the topic to the company’s board of directors. His notes included the following language: “In spite of the rush by some participants in the greenhouse debate to declare that the science has demonstrated the existence of [global warming] today, I do not believe such is the case. Enhanced greenhouse is still deeply imbedded in scientific uncertainty, and we will require substantial additional investigation to determine the degree to which its effects might be experienced in the future.”
  3. 1995
    Lenny Bernstein, Exxon Mobil Chemical Engineer and Expert on Climate Change
    An email by Mr. Bernstein to Ohio University’s Institute for Applied and Professional Ethics shows that Exxon (before its merger with Mobil) was aware of climate change science years before it became a political issue.

    In his note, Mr. Bernstein refers to a giant natural gas field in Indonesia that Exxon did not ultimately develop:
    “Exxon first got interested in climate change in 1981 because it was seeking to develop the Natuna gas field off Indonesia. ”“When I first learned about the project in 1989, the projections were that if Natuna were developed and its CO2 vented to the atmosphere, it would be the largest point source of CO2 in the world and account for 1 percent of projected global CO2 emissions.”
  4. 1997
    Lee Raymond, Exxon Chief Executive
    Mr. Raymond, in a speech to the 15th World Petroleum Congress in Beijing, addressed the issue: “It is highly unlikely that the temperature in the middle of the next century will be affected whether policies are enacted now or 20 years from now.”
  5. 2000
    Exxon Mobil Newspaper Ad
    In response to the Clinton Administration’s report on the potential effects of climate change on different regions and industries in the United States, the company took out a lengthy ad. Excerpts include: “The report’s language and logic appear designed to emphasize selective results to convince people that climate change will adversely impact their lives.”“The report is written as a political document, not an objective summary of the underlying science. Climate change is an important public issue. That is why we support emphasis on further climate research, the development and encouragement of promising technology, the promotion of more efficient use of energy, the removal of barriers to innovation, and cost-benefit assessments of proposed policies.”
  6. 2002
    Bob B. Peterson, Chief Executive of Imperial Oil, Exxon Mobil’s Subsidiary in Canada
    Mr. Peterson told the Canadian Press news service that “Kyoto is an economic entity,” referring to the Kyoto Protocol initiative to reduce greenhouse gas emissions: “It has nothing to do with the environment. It has to do with world trade. This is a wealth-transfer scheme between developed and developing nations.”
  7. 2004
  8. Exxon Mobil Newspaper Ad
    “Scientific uncertainties continue to limit our ability to make objective, quantitative determinations regarding the human role in recent climate change or the degree and consequences of future change.”
  9. 2007
    Rex Tillerson, Exxon Mobil’s Chief Executive
    Mr. Tillerson changed course in a speech before a conference in Houston organized by the energy consulting firm Cambridge Energy Research Associates: “The risks to society and ecosystems from climate change could prove to be significant. So, despite the uncertainties, it is prudent to develop and implement sensible strategies that address these risks.”“A range implies a certain degree of uncertainty. Policy decisions need to accommodate that uncertainty.”
  10. 2008
    J. Stephen Simon, an Exxon Mobil Senior Vice President
    Testifying before a Senate Judiciary Committee on May 21, 2008, Mr. Simon was pressed by Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, Democrat of Rhode Island, who suggested that fringe views on climate change were being endorsed and espoused by oil companies. Mr. Simon responded: “In other words, that we are supporting junk science and trying to make people think that this is not an issue. I think all of us recognize it is an issue. It is how we deal with it – and I think we are dealing with it, and we are doing so in a responsible fashion.”
  11. 2010
  12. Exxon Mobil Annual Report
    “Because we want to ensure that today’s progress does not come at the expense of future generations we need to manage the risks to our environment. This includes taking meaningful steps to curb global greenhouse gases (GHG) emissions, while also utilizing local resources to help maintain secure supplies. Energy-related carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions represent close to 60 percent of global GHG emissions attributed to human activities, and are expected to increase about 25 percent from 2005 to 2030. This increase is substantially lower than the projected growth in energy demand over the period, reflecting improved energy efficiency, as well as a shift to a significantly less carbon-intensive energy mix – mainly natural gas, nuclear and wind gaining share as fuels for power generation.”
  13. 2014
    Exxon Mobil Annual Report
    The company commented on various countries’ consideration of rules for reductions in greenhouse gas emissions to control climate change: “These requirements could make our products more expensive, lengthen project implementation times, and reduce demand for hydrocarbons, as well as shift hydrocarbon demand toward relatively lower-carbon sources such as natural gas.”
  14. 2015
    Ken Cohen, Exxon Mobil Vice President for Public and Government Affairs
    Mr. Cohen, in a blog post entitled “Exxon Mobil’s commitment to climate science,” wrote: “What we have understood from the outset – and something which over-the-top activists fail to acknowledge — is that climate change is an enormously complicated subject. “The climate and mankind’s connection to it are among the most complex topics scientists have ever studied, with a seemingly endless number of variables to consider over an incredibly long timespan.”
 

Tyger

Paranormal Adept
Citing Climate Change, Obama Rejects Construction of Keystone XL Oil Pipeline
By CORAL DAVENPORTNOV. 6, 2015
LINK: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/11/07/u...t&contentID=WhatsNext&src=recg&pgtype=article
TEXT: "WASHINGTON — President Obamaannounced on Friday that he had rejected the request from a Canadian company to build the Keystone XL oil pipeline, ending a seven-year review that had become a symbol of the debate over his climate policies. Mr. Obama’s denial of the proposed 1,179-mile pipeline, which would have carried 800,000 barrels a day of carbon-heavy petroleum from the Canadian oil sands to the Gulf Coast, comes as he seeks to build an ambitious legacy on climate change. “America is now a global leader when it comes to taking serious action to fightclimate change,” Mr. Obama said in remarks from the White House. “And, frankly, approving this project would have undercut that global leadership.”

The move was made ahead of a major United Nations summit meeting on climate change to be held in Paris in December, when Mr. Obama hopes to help broker a historic agreement committing the world’s nations to enacting new policies to counter global warming. While the rejection of the pipeline is largely symbolic, Mr. Obama has sought to telegraph to other world leaders that the United States is serious about acting on climate change.

The once-obscure Keystone project became a political symbol amid broader clashes over energy, climate change and the economy. The rejection of a single oil infrastructure project will have little impact on efforts to reduce greenhouse gas pollution, but the pipeline plan gained an outsize profile after environmental activists spent four years marching and rallying against it in front of the White House and across the country. Mr. Obama said that the pipeline has occupied what he called “an overinflated role in our political discourse." “It has become a symbol too often used as a campaign cudgel by both parties rather than a serious policy matter,” he said. “And all of this obscured the fact that this pipeline would neither be a silver bullet for the economy, as was promised by some, nor the express lane to climate disaster proclaimed by others.”

Republicans and the oil industry had demanded that the president approve the pipeline, which they said would create jobs and stimulate economic growth. Many Democrats, particularly those in oil-producing states such as North Dakota, also supported the project. In February, congressional Democrats joined with Republicans in sending Mr. Obama a bill to speed approval of the project,but the president vetoed the measure. The rejection of the pipeline is one of several actions Mr. Obama has taken as he intensifies his push on climate change in his last year in office. In August, he announced his most significant climate policy, a set of aggressive new regulations to cut emissions of planet-warming carbon pollution from the nation’s power plants.

Both sides of the debate saw the Keystone rejection as a major symbolic step, a sign that the president was willing to risk angering a bipartisan majority of lawmakers in the pursuit of his environmental agenda. And both supporters and critics of Mr. Obama saw the surprisingly powerful influence of environmental activists in the decision. “Once the grass-roots movement on the Keystone pipeline mobilized, it changed what it meant to the president,” said Douglas G. Brinkley, a historian at Rice University who writes about presidential environmental legacies. “It went from a routine infrastructure project to the symbol of an era.”

Environmental activists cheered the decision as a vindication of their influence. “President Obama is the first world leader to reject a project because of its effect on the climate,” said Bill McKibben, founder of the activist group 350.org, which led the campaign against the pipeline. “That gives him new stature as an environmental leader, and it eloquently confirms the five years and millions of hours of work that people of every kind put into this fight.”

Environmentalists had sought to block construction of the pipeline because it would have provided a conduit for petroleum extracted from the Canadian oil sands. The process of extracting that oil produces about 17 percent more planet-warming greenhouse gases than the process of extracting conventional oil.

But numerous State Department reviews concluded that construction of the pipeline would have little impact on whether that type of oil was burned, because it was already being extracted and moving to market via rail and existing pipelines. In citing his reason for the decision, Mr. Obama noted the State Department findings that construction of the pipeline would not have created a significant number of new jobs, lowered oil or gasoline prices or significantly reduced American dependence on foreign oil. “From a market perspective, the industry can find a different way to move that oil,” said Christine Tezak, an energy market analyst at ClearView Energy Partners, a Washington firm. “How long it takes is just a result of oil prices. If prices go up, companies will get the oil out.”

However, a State Department review also found that demand for the oil sands fuel would drop if oil prices fell below $65 a barrel, since moving oil by rail is more expensive than using a pipeline. An Environmental Protection Agency review of the project this year noted that under such circumstances, construction of the pipeline could be seen as contributing to emissions, since companies might be less likely to move the oil via expensive rail when oil prices are low — but would be more likely to move it cheaply via the pipeline. The price of oil has plummeted this year, hovering at less than $50 a barrel.

The recent election of a new Canadian prime minister, Justin Trudeau, may also have influenced Mr. Obama’s decision. Mr. Trudeau’s predecessor, Stephen Harper, had pushed the issue as a top priority in the relationship between the United States and Canada, personally urging Mr. Obama to approve the project. Blocking the project during the Harper administration would have bruised ties with a crucial ally.

While Mr. Trudeau also supports construction of the Keystone pipeline, he has not made the issue central to Canada’s relationship with the United States, and has criticized Mr. Harper for presenting Canada’s position as an ultimatum, while not taking substantial action on climate change related to the oil sands. Mr. Trudeau did not raise the issue during his first post-election conversation with Mr. Obama.

The construction would have had little impact on the nation’s economy. A State Department analysis concluded that building the pipeline would have created jobs, but the total number represented less than one-tenth of 1 percent of the nation’s total employment. The analysis estimated that Keystone would support 42,000 temporary jobs over its two-year construction period — about 3,900 of them in construction and the rest in indirect support jobs, such as food service. The department estimated that the project would create about 35 permanent jobs.

Republicans and the oil industry criticized Mr. Obama for what they have long said was his acquiescence to the pressure of activists and environmentally minded political donors. “A decision this poorly made is not symbolic, but deeply cynical,” said Senator Lisa Murkowski, the Alaska Republican who leads the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee. “It does not rest on the facts — it continues to distort them.” Jack Gerard, the head of the American Petroleum Institute, which lobbies for oil companies, said in a statement, “Unfortunately for the majority of Americans who have said they want the jobs and economic benefits Keystone XL represents, the White House has placed political calculations above sound science.”

Russ Girling, the president and chief executive of TransCanada, said in a statement that the president’s decision was not consistent with the State Department’s review. “Today, misplaced symbolism was chosen over merit and science,” said Mr. Girling, whose company is based in Calgary, Alberta. “Rhetoric won out over reason.”

The statement said that the company was reviewing the decision but offered no indication if it planned to submit a new application. If a Republican wins the 2016 presidential election, a new submission of the pipeline permit application could yield a different outcome. “President Obama’s rejection of the Keystone XL pipeline is a huge mistake, and is the latest reminder that this administration continues to prioritize the demands of radical environmentalists over America’s energy security,” said Senator Marco Rubio of Florida, who is seeking the Republican nomination for president. “When I’m president, Keystone will be approved, and President Obama’s backward energy policies will come to an end.”

As Mr. Obama seeks to carve out a substantial environmental legacy, his decision on the pipeline pales in import compared with his use of Environmental Protection Agency regulations. The power plant rules he announced in August have met with legal challenges, but if they are put in place, they could lead to a transformation of the nation’s energy economy, shuttering fossil fuel plants and rapidly increasing production of wind and solar. Those rules are at the heart of Mr. Obama’s push for a global agreement.

But advocates of the agreement said that the Keystone decision, even though it is largely symbolic, could show other countries that Mr. Obama is willing to make tough choices about climate change. “The rejection of the Keystone permit was key for the president to keep his climate chops at home and with the rest of the world,” said Durwood Zaelke, the president of the Institute for Governance and Sustainable Development, a Washington research organization.
 

Tyger

Paranormal Adept
China Burns Much More Coal Than Reported, Complicating Climate Talks
By CHRIS BUCKLEY NOV. 3, 2015

LINK: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/11/04/w..._th_20151104&nl=todaysheadlines&nlid=54852892
TEXT: "BEIJING China, the world’s leading emitter of greenhouse gases from coal, has been burning up to 17 percent more coal a year than the government previously disclosed, according to newly released data. The finding could complicate the already difficult efforts to limit global warming.

Even for a country of China’s size, the scale of the correction is immense. The sharp upward revision in official figures means that China has released much more carbon dioxide — almost a billion more tons a year according to initial calculations — than previously estimated. The increase alone is greater than the whole German economy emits annually from fossil fuels.

Officials from around the world will have to come to grips with the new figures when they gather in Paris this month to negotiate an international framework for curtailing greenhouse-gas pollution. The data also pose a challenge for scientists who are trying to reduce China’s smog, which often bathes whole regions in acrid, unhealthy haze.

The Chinese government has promised to halt the growth of its emissions of carbon dioxide, the main greenhouse pollutant from coal and other fossil fuels, by 2030. The new data suggest that the task of meeting that deadline by reducing China’s dependence on coal will be more daunting and urgent than expected, said Yang Fuqiang, a former energy official in China who now advises the Natural Resources Defense Council. “This will have a big impact, because China has been burning so much more coal than we believed,” Mr. Yang said. “It turns out that it was an even bigger emitter than we imagined. This helps to explain why China’s air quality is so poor, and that will make it easier to get national leaders to take this seriously.”

The new data, which appeared recently in an energy statistics yearbook published without fanfare by China’s statistical agency, show that coal consumption has been underestimated since 2000, and particularly in recent years. The revisions were based on a census of the economy in 2013 that exposed gaps in data collection, especially from small companies and factories. Illustrating the scale of the revision, the new figures add about 600 million tons to China’s coal consumption in 2012 — an amount equivalent to more than 70 percent of the total coal used annually by the United States. “It’s been a confusing situation for a long time,” said Ayaka Jones, a China analyst at the United States Energy Information Administration in Washington. She said the new data vindicated her earlier analysis of China’s preliminary statistics, which flagged significantly increased numbers for coal use and overall energy consumption.

The new data indicated that much of the change came from heavy industry — including plants that produce coal chemicals and cement, as well as those using coking coal, which goes to make steel, Ms. Jones said. The correction for coal use in electric power generation was much smaller.

Officials accepted the need to correct worsening distortions in the old data but have not commented publicly on the changes, according to Lin Boqiang, director of the China Center for Energy Economics Research at Xiamen University in eastern China. Mr. Lin said in a telephone interview that this was partly because the new figures made it more complicated to set and assess the country’s clean-energy goals. “It’s created a lot of bewilderment,” he said. “Our basic data will have to be adjusted, and the international agencies will also have to adjust their databases. This is troublesome because many forecasts and commitments were based on the previous data.”

When President Xi Jinping proposed that China’s emissions stop growing by 2030, he did not say what level they would reach by then. The new numbers may mean that the peak will be higher, but they also raise hopes that emissions will crest many years sooner, Mr. Yang, the climate adviser, said. “I think this implies that we’re closer to a peak, because there’s also been a falloff in coal consumption in the past couple of years,” he said.

Chinese energy and statistics agency officials did not respond to faxed requests for comment on the data revisions. The press office of the International Energy Agency said by email that the organization would revise its own data to reflect China’s revisions, starting with numbers for 2011 to 2013 that will be released Wednesday. The agency estimated, based on the new figures, that China’s carbon dioxide pollution in 2011 and 2012 was 4 percent to 6 percent greater than previously thought. But some scientists said the difference could be much larger.


Jan Ivar Korsbakken, a senior researcher at the Center for International Climate and Environmental Research in Oslo, said that based on his preliminary analysis, the new data implied that China had released about 900 million metric tons more carbon dioxide from 2011 to 2013. That would be an 11 percent increase in emissions, he said. For comparison, the International Energy Agency estimated before the revision that China had emitted 8.25 billion tons of carbon dioxide from fossil fuels in 2012. Dr. Korsbakken, a physicist, emphasized that deeper analysis of the new data was needed before firm conclusions could be drawn.

When estimating emissions, scientists prefer to account for coal use by the amount of energy in it rather than by its raw mass, which includes impurities that end up as ash. Measured in energy terms, Dr. Korsbakken said, China consumed 10 percent to 15 percent more coal than the old data had showed from 2005 to 2013, the last year for which the new and old figures can be compared. The revisions for 2001 through 2004 were smaller.

Economists have grown increasingly skeptical about the economic data China publishes, and the revisions open a new episode in the debate over its energy use and greenhouse-gas emissions. China burned or otherwise consumed 4.2 billion metric tons in 2013, according to the new data, and its emissions now far exceed those of any other country, including the United States, the second-largest emitter. This is not the first time China has underestimated its coal consumption. In the late 1990s, small coal mines were ordered to close, but many of them simply stopped reporting their output to the government. For a time, this created an erroneous impression that China had succeeded in generating economic growth without increasing emissions.

More recently, some scientists concluded that China’s emissions were lower than widely believed because the coal it was using burned less efficiently than researchers had generally assumed. But Mr. Yang said that conclusion had been disputed. The revised numbers do not alter scientists’ estimates of the total amount of carbon dioxide in the air. That is measured directly, not inferred from fuel consumption statistics the way countries’ emissions are usually estimated.

So if China’s emissions have been much greater than believed, researchers will want to understand where the extra carbon dioxide output ended up — for example, how it might have been absorbed in natural “sinks” like forests or oceans, said Josep G. Canadell, executive director of the Global Carbon Project, which studies the sources and flows of greenhouse-gas pollution. “If the emissions are partially wrong,” Mr. Canadell said, “we’ll be wrong in attributing carbon sources and sinks.”

Correction: November 6, 2015
Because of an editing error, an article on Wednesday about the release of new data showing that China burns up to 17 percent more coal per year than the government had previously disclosed misidentified, in some editions, the measurement that the figure of 4.2 billion metric tons applies to. It represents the amount of coal consumed in China in 2013, not the amount of carbon dioxide emitted.

 

Tyger

Paranormal Adept
This article is from 2013, but the meme is still circulating.

Al Gore Inspires New Level Of Dishonesty And Stupidity In Right Wing Media

December 16, 2013 by Justin Rosario
LINK: Anti-Al Gore meme reaches new level of dishonesty and stupidity
TEXT: "Al Gore is one of those public figures that make conservative heads explode. It might have something to do with the fact that Bush needed a conservative Supreme Court to take the election away from Gore or it could be the fact that Gore really pushed the Climate Change debate to the forefront of public discourse. Either way, the right hates Al Gore. So much so that they are unaware of just how insanely stupid they look in the insane lengths they go to attack him.

“Al Gore is a big doo-doo head!” And other derp from the right.
Take, for instance, the most recent round of “Al Gore was wrong!” that’s flying around the right-wing echo chamber. It concerns his famous Climate Change speech in Copenhagen.

Here’s The Gateway Pundit: FIVE YEARS AGO TODAY… Al Gore Predicted the North Pole Will Be Ice Free in 5 Years
Ed Driscoll: Yet Another Final Countdown Expires
World Net Daily: ANOTHER AL GORE PREDICTION BITES THE DUST

Etc. Etc.

There’s just a teeny little problem with all of this gleeful mockery from the conservative pundits: They’re lying. And not very well.

Conservative media is fundamentally dishonest but this is…wow.
It’s a known fact that right-wing media lies a lot. What isn’t so well-known is the absolute and total contempt they have for their audience.

What I mean by “contempt” is that the conservative media doesn’t bother coming up with clever lies anymore. That takes some effort. No, they believe that their audience is so intensely stupid/brainwashed that you can tell them anything and they’ll believe it. They might be on to something there. How else can you explain the utter transparency of the lie?

This is 2013. The “prediction” that the right is in a tizzy about was made in….2009. 2013- 2009 = 4.

How stupid do you have to think your readers are that you simply assume that basic math is beyond their grasp? Or how easily manipulated does your audience have to be that you can be such an over-the-top liar and be completely confident no one will question you?

Worse, the “prediction” was for 5-7 years from 2009. And it was only a 75% possibility, not a definitive statement. And it wasn’t Al Gore’s.

Here’s the video. Take a look at the comments on Youtube to see how many suckers have fallen for this new story hook, line and sinker:

Al Gore Warns Polar Ice May Be Gone in Five Years
TEXT: "Uploaded on Dec 16, 2009"

“Some of the models suggest to Dr. Maslowski that there is a seventy five percent chance that the entire north polar ice cap during summer, during some of the summer months, could be completely ice free within the next five to seven years. Bob used a figure of 2030 and the volumetric analysis leads this uh… Dr. Maslowski to make that projection. We will find out.”

Yes, clearly Al Gore sharing two possible dates of the possibility of the ice cap melting is the same as Al Gore making a solid prediction of his own. Further, five years from 2009 is now 2013 in right wing Makeshitupland.

Let’s play make believe.
But let’s pretend that Al Gore made a prediction that the ice cap would melt completely this year. Obviously that hasn’t happened and it doesn’t seem likely that it will happen within the next couple of years. Does this mean that Al Gore is completely discredited?

Ridiculous. The ice cap melting has mineral companies, oil companies and shipping companies as giddy as a virgin on prom night. Are they all delusional? Climate Change deniers might as well deny that water is wet. The free market has spoken and it’s saying, loud and clear, “The ice is melting and there’s money to be made!”

But so what? Gore was wrong on the date so he must be a complete kook! We hate Al Gore!

I’d like to answer this nuanced and well thought out line of reasoning with an analogy:

You have decided to smoke cigarettes. I tell you that it will give you cancer in 5-7 years. 4 years pass and you don’t have cancer. Therefore you declare that, HAH,! cigarette smoke is totally safe. Meanwhile, your teeth are stained, you’re addicted to nicotine and you run out of breath easily. But hey! I was wrong about the time frame so keep puffing away! Nothing bad could possibly happen.

Unless you’re the 1 in 3 people that die from smoking, that is. And in this analogy, when you get cancer, you kill the rest of us, too. But don’t let any of that get in the way of bashing Al Gore. He’s just a big dummy, right?
 

Tyger

Paranormal Adept
I post this here because of the extraordinary ad hominem attacks directed at Al Gore by the Far Right. The reality of Al Gore is quite different from the meme that the ignorant, vitriolic hate directed at him would maintain. He is not reviled as some would have one believe. Quite the reverse.

Article from The Atlantic -
The Planet-Saving, Capitalism-Subverting, Surprisingly Lucrative Investment Secrets of Al Gore
The former vice president has led his firm to financial success. But what he really wants to do is create a whole new version of capitalism. by JAMES FALLOWS NOVEMBER 2015 ISSUE
LINK: The (Planet-Saving, Capitalism-Subverting, Surprisingly Lucrative) Investment Secrets of Al Gore
 

Tyger

Paranormal Adept
A short 3:20 minute Frontline video on the EXXON situation - EXXON knew CO2 was a problem as far back as 1977. They had the research to prove the CO2 was increasing, but in 1995 began the disinformation campaign questioning the science.

It is noteworthy that many deniers identify themselves as having been pro-climate change up until round about the mid-90's when they 'saw the light' - at the time the oil companies (like EXXON) were beginning the 'science is not settled' meme.

Exxon Researched Climate Change in 1977 | FRONTLINE

TEXT: "Published on Sep 16, 2015: A short FRONTLINE film about Exxon's early research into climate change produced in collaboration with InsideClimate News."
 
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Tyger

Paranormal Adept
Scientists warned the US president about global warming 50 years ago today: On 5 November 1965 climate scientists summarized the risks associated with rising carbon pollution in a report for Lyndon Baines Johnson - November 5, 2015
Scientists warned the President about global warming 50 years ago today | Dana Nuccitelli
TEXT: "Fifty years ago today, as the American Association for the Advancement of Science highlighted, US president Lyndon Johnson’s science advisory committee sent him a report entitled Restoring the Quality of Our Environment. The introduction to the report noted: Pollutants have altered on a global scale the carbon dioxide content of the air and the lead concentrations in ocean waters and human populations.

"The report included a section on atmospheric carbon dioxide and climate change, written by prominent climate scientists Roger Revelle, Wallace Broecker, Charles Keeling, Harmon Craig, and J Smagorisnky. Reviewing the document today, one can’t help but be struck by how well these scientists understood the mechanisms of Earth’s climate change 50 years ago.

"The report noted that within a few years, climate models would be able to reasonably project future global surface temperature changes. In 1974, one of its authors, Wallace Broecker did just that in a paper titled Climatic Change: Are We on the Brink of a Pronounced Global Warming?.

"You can read the details about this paper and Broecker’s modeling here and in my book Climatology versus Pseudoscience. His model only included the effects of carbon dioxide and his best estimates of natural climate cycles. It didn’t include the warming effects of other greenhouse gases, or the cooling effects of human aerosol pollution, but fortunately for Broecker those two effects have roughly canceled each other out over the past 40 years.

"Broecker’s model predicted the global warming anticipated by 2015 both from carbon pollution alone, and when including his best estimate of natural climate cycles. In the figure below, the carbon-caused warming is shown in blue, and in combination with natural cycles (which Broecker turns out not to have represented very accurately) in green, as compared to the observed global surface temperatures from NOAA in red. As you can see, the climate model predictions from over 40 years ago turned out to be remarkably accurate.


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Wallace Broecker’s 1974 climate model global warming predictions vs NOAA observations. Created by Dana Nuccitelli.
"The 1965 report also debunked a number of myths that climate contrarians continue to repeat to this day. For example, the first section of the climate chapter is titled Carbon Dioxide from Fossil Fuels – the Invisible Pollutant. Although the US supreme court ruled that carbon dioxide is a pollutant in a landmark 2007 case, many contrarians object to this description. Nevertheless, climate scientists realized a half century ago that human carbon emissions qualify as pollution due to the dangers they pose via climate change.

"The report noted that although carbon dioxide is an invisible “trace gas” – meaning it comprises a small percentage of the Earth’s atmosphere as a whole – it can nevertheless have significant impacts on the climate at these seemingly low levels. As the scientists wrote: Only about one two-thousandth of the atmosphere and one ten-thousandth of the ocean are carbon dioxide. Yet to living creatures, these small fractions are of vital importance … Within a few short centuries, we are returning to the air a significant part of the carbon that was slowly extracted by plants and buried in the sediments during half a billion years.

"Contrarians today often repeat the myths that because carbon dioxide is invisibleand only a trace gas, it can’t possibly cause significant climate change. This report demonstrates that scientists understood the greenhouse effect better 50 years ago than these contrarians do today.

The report documented the several different lines of evidence that prove the increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide is entirely human-caused, concluding: We can conclude with fair assurance that at the present time, fossil fuels are the only source of CO2 being added to the ocean-atmosphere-biosphere system. This is yet another fact understood by climate scientists 50 years ago that some contrarians, including a few favorite contrarian climate scientists like Roy Spencer and Judith Curry, continue to cast doubt upon to this day.

The report also projected how much the atmospheric carbon dioxide level would increase in the following decades. Based on projected world energy requirements, the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (1956) has estimated an amount of fossil fuel combustion by the year 2000 that with our assumed partitions would give about a 25 percent increase in atmospheric CO2, compared to the amount present during the 19th Century.

"A 25% increase from pre-industrial levels would result in about 350 ppm of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. The United Nations underestimated the growth in fossil fuel combustion, because the actual carbon dioxide level in 2000 was 370 ppm.

"In addition to rising temperatures, the report discussed a variety of “other possible effects of an increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide”, including melting of the Antarctic ice cap, rise of sea level, warming of sea water, increased acidity of fresh waters (which also applies to the danger of ocean acidification, global warming’s evil twin), and an increase in plant photosynthesis.

"These climate scientists warned President Johnson in 1965 not just of the dangers associated with human-caused global warming, but also that we might eventually have to consider geoengineering the climate to offset that warming and the risks that we’re causing by inadvertently running a dangerous experiment with the Earth’s climate. Through his worldwide industrial civilization, Man is unwittingly conducting a vast geophysical experiment. Within a few generations he is burning the fossil fuels that slowly accumulated in the earth over the past 500 million years … The climatic changes that may be produced by the increased CO2 content could be deleterious from the point of view of human beings. The possibilities of deliberately bringing about countervailing climatic changes therefore need to be thoroughly explored.

"Fifty years later, the impending Paris international climate negotiations represent our last chance to heed the expert counsel about the dangers posed by human-caused climate change before we’re fully committed to the deleterious consequences that climate scientists have been warning us about for a half century.

"That’s why more than 1,500 academics from around the world have signed an open letter asking world leaders and delegates at Paris to take vigorous action now in order to avoid a future of catastrophic global warming."
 

Tyger

Paranormal Adept
Why Doesn’t Everyone Believe Humans Are Causing Climate Change?
By Brad Balukjian on Wed, 19 Nov 2014

LINK
: Why Doesn’t Everyone Believe Humans Are Causing Climate Change? — NOVA Next | PBS
TEXT: "Last week [Nov 2014] during his tour of Asia, President Barack Obama struck a new global warming deal with China. It was a landmark agreement that many expect could break the logjam that has kept the world’s two largest emitters largely on the sidelines of talks to curb greenhouse gas emissions. Both countries agreed to reduce carbon dioxide emissions, with the U.S. ramping up reductions starting in 2020 and China beginning cuts in 2030.

"Yet back home, President Obama still faces an electorate that doesn’t believe climate change is caused by humans. Only 40% of Americans attribute global warming to human activity, according to a recent Pew Research Center poll. This, despite decades of scientific evidence and the fact that Americans generally trust climate scientists.

"That apparent cognitive dissonance has vexed two scientists in particular: Michael Ranney, a professor of education at the University of California, Berkeley, and Dan Kahan, a professor of law at Yale University. According to both, we haven’t been asking the right questions. But they disagree on what, exactly, those questions should be. If one or both of them are right, the shift in tone could transform our society’s debate over climate change.

"The Wisdom Deficit
"In the 1990s, Michael Ranney started informally asking people what they perceived to be the world’s biggest problem. He hadn’t set out to tackle environmental issues—he was first trained in applied physics and materials science before turning to cognitive psychology. But time and again, he heard “climate change” as an answer.

"Ranney had also noticed that while the scientific community had converged on a consensus, the general public had not, at least not in the U.S. The Climategate controversy in late 2009 over leaked e-mails between climate scientists and Oklahoma Senator James Inhofe’s insistence that anthropogenic global warming is a hoax are just two examples of the widespread conflict among the American public over what is causing the planet to warm.

"Ranney and his team say that a “wisdom deficit” is driving the wedge. Specifically, it’s a lack of understanding of the mechanism of global warming that’s been retarding progress on the issue. “For many Americans, they’re caught between a radio talk show host—of the sort that Rush Limbaugh is—and maybe a professor who just gave them a lecture on global warming. And if you don’t understand the mechanism, then you just have competing authorities, kind of like the Pope and Galileo,” he says. “Mechanism turns out to be a tie-breaker when there’s a contentious issue.”

"Despite the fact that the general public has been inundated with scientific facts related to global warming, Ranney says that our climate literacy is still not very high. In other words, though we may hear a lot about climate change, we don’t really understand it. It’s similar to how lots of people follow the ups and downs of the Dow Jones Industrial Average but don’t understand how those fluctuations relate to macroeconomic trends.

"Climate illiteracy isn’t just limited to the general public, either. Ranney recalls a scientist’s presentation at a recent conference which said that many university professors teaching global warming barely had a better understanding of its mechanism than the undergraduates they were teaching. “Even one of the most highly-cited climate change communicators in the world didn’t know the mechanism over dinner,” he says.

"Depolarizing Language
"Meanwhile, Dan Kahan says that it’s not a wisdom gap that’s preventing acceptance of human’s role in climate change, but the cultural politicization of the topic. People don’t need a sophisticated understanding of climate change, he says. “They only need to be able to recognize what the best available scientific evidence signifies as a practical matter: that human-caused global warming is initiating a series of very significant dynamics—melting ice, rising sea levels, flooding, heightened risk of serious diseases, more intense hurricanes and other extreme weather events—that put us in danger.”

"According to Kahan, the problem lies in the discourse around the issue. When people are asked about their acceptance of anthropogenic global warming, he says the questions tend to confound what people know with who they are and the cultural groups they identify with. In those circumstances, declaring a position on the issue becomes more a statement of cultural identity than one of scientific understanding.

"Kahan’s ideas are based on his own surveys of the American public. In one recent study of 1,769 participants recruited through the public opinion firm YouGov, he assessed people’s “ordinary climate science intelligence” with a series of climate change knowledge questions. He also collected demographic data, including political orientation. Kahan found no correlation between one’s understanding of climate science and his or her acceptance of human-caused climate change. Some people who knew quite a bit on the topic still didn’t accept the premise of anthropogenic climate change, and vice versa. He also found that, as expected, conservatives are less likely to accept that humans are changing the climate.

"Declaring a position on the issue can become more a statement of cultural identity than one of scientific understanding. Unlike Ranney, Kahan did find strong evidence for polarization. The more knowledgeable a conservative, for example, the more likely they are to not accept human-caused global warming. Kahan suggests that these people use their significant analytical skills to seek evidence that aligns with their political orientation.

"Still, despite many people’s strong reluctance to accept anthropogenic global warming, cities and counties in places like southeast Florida have gone ahead and supported practices to deal with global warming anyway. Kahan relates one anecdote in which state and local officials in Florida have argued for building a nuclear power generator higher than planned because of sea-level rise and storm surge projections. But if you ask these same people if they believe in climate change, they’ll say, “no, that’s something entirely different!” Kahan says.

"Kahan’s not exactly sure why some people act in ways that directly contradict their own beliefs—he laughs and verbally shrugs when asked—but he has some ideas. The leading one is the notion of dualism, when someone mentally separates two apparently conflicting ideas and yet feels no need to reconcile them. This happens on occasion with religious medical doctors, he says, who reject evolution but openly admit to using the principles of evolution in their work life.

"Whatever the cause, Kahan thinks the case of southeast Florida is worth studying. There, the community has been able to examine the scientific evidence for climate change and take action despite widespread disagreement on whether humans are actually driving climate change. The key, Kahan says, is that they have kept politics out of the room.

"Two Sides of the Same Coin
"Ranney and Kahan, much like the skeptics and supporters of human-caused climate change, question the other’s conclusions. Kahan is skeptical that Ranney’s approach can be very effective on a large scale. “I don’t think it makes sense to believe that if you tell people in five-minute lectures about climate science, that it’s going to solve the problem,” he says. He also questions the applicability of Ranney’s experiments, which have mostly included students and Mechanical Turk respondents. “The people who are disagreeing in the world are not college students,” he says. “You’re also not in a position to give every single person a lecture. But if you did, do you think you’d be giving that lecture to them with Rush Limbaugh standing right next to them pointing out they they’re full of shit? Because in the world, that’s what happens.”

"Hundreds of millions of in-person lectures would certainly be impossible, but Ranney has high hopes for his online videos. Plus, Ranney points out that Kahan’s studies are correlative, while his are controlled experiments where causation can be more strongly inferred. In addition, most of the measures of climate science knowledge that Kahan uses in his research focus on factual knowledge rather than mechanism. (For example, the multiple choice question, “What gas do most scientists believe causes temperatures in the atmosphere to rise?”). Ranney’s work, on the other hand, is all about mechanism.

"Despite their apparent disagreement, Ranney thinks the debate is a bit of a false dichotomy. “It’s certainly the case that one’s culture has a significant relationship to whether or not you accept [anthropogenic global warming], but that doesn’t mean your global warming knowledge isn’t also related to it. And it doesn’t mean you can’t overcome a cultural predilection with more information,” Ranney says. “There were a lot of things that were culturally predicted, like thinking we were in a geocentric universe or that smoking was fine for you or that the Earth was flat—all manner of things that eventually science overcame.”

"Perhaps Ranney and Kahan are on the same team after all—they would probably agree that, at the end of the day, both knowledge and culture matter, and that we’d be well-served to focus our energy on how to operationally increase acceptance of anthropogenic global warming. “Whatever we can do now will be heroic for our great-grandchildren, and whatever we do not do will be infamous,” Ranney says."
 

Tyger

Paranormal Adept
Opinion piece -

Imagine 100 million more refugees...
By Thom Hartmann, Nov. 18, 2015
LINK: Imagine 100 million more refugees...
TEXT: "If we don't strengthen our fight against climate change, 100 million more people may be pushed into extreme poverty within the next 15 years.

"That's Oxfam International's response to a stunning, new report by the World Bank. That analysis is called “Shock Waves: Managing the Impacts of Climate Change on Poverty,” and it is the first to consider how global warming will be felt at a household level.

"In other words, the researchers considered how heat waves, floods, droughts, and public health issues will impact poor people, rather than simply considering how nations as a whole will deal with such problems.

"The report explained, “Poor people and poor countries are exposed and vulnerable to all types of climate-related shocks – natural disasters that destroy assets and livelihoods; waterborne diseases and pests that become more prevalent during heat waves, floods, or droughts; crop failure from reduced rainfall; and spikes in food prices that follow extreme weather events.”

"While those who can afford to withstand these events will be able to adapt to climate change, those who don't have the means to move or pay higher food prices may suddenly find themselves in a desperate situation.

"
In order to reduce these risks, and help more people survive on our warming planet, Oxfam and the World Bank insist that we must reduce poverty as we ramp up our climate fight.

"They call for “rapid, inclusive, and climate-informed development” to help people cope with short-term climate change, and “pro-poor mitigation policies” to limit the long-term impact.

"
A senior economist at the World Bank said, “The report demonstrates that ending poverty and fighting climate change cannot be done in isolation – the two will be much more easily achieved if they are addressed together.”

"
The fact is, we can no longer look at the climate fight and the effort to end inequality as two separate issues. If we want our species to survive, we better get to work and deal with both."
 

Tyger

Paranormal Adept
Climate Change Helped Spark Syrian War, Study Says: Research provides first deep look at how global warming may already influence armed conflict. By Craig Welch, for National Geographic PUBLISHED MARCH 02, 2015
LINK: Climate Change Helped Spark Syrian War, Study Says

Published on Monday, November 16, 2015
Amid Terror Fever, [Bernie] Sanders Refuses to Back Down on Climate Threat Stance
"If we do not get our act together and listen to what the scientists say, you're going to see all sorts of international conflict," said candidate, repeating previous assertion that climate change is our greatest national security threat by Lauren McCauley,

LINK: Amid Terror Fever, Sanders Refuses to Back Down on Climate Threat Stance
 

mike_thoth

Skilled Investigator
I have followed this global warming story for the last 10 years or so, I have covered many scientific subjects and many subjects covered by the Paracast. I also work in a broad sense in the scientific community where when statements are made and need to be backed up with evidence, citing papers etc…. And the global warming debate is much like the debate of whether the UFO phenomena is real regardless of its origin.

For instance in the "Science world" UFOs are not considered real, the "Skeptics" in this case demand evidence, they want physical evidence but lacking physical evidence, any documentary evidence from pilots for instance is also not compelling, as the person in question could have misidentified the phenomena.

When radar and multiple witness sightings occur, the radar could have been a flock of birds, a temperature inversion whilst at the same time the witness misidentified something. In other words they claim no evidence exists but are largely unaware of the excellent cases and any physical evidence left behind. This is why a cosmologist like Hawking can say only lunatics see UFOs (I am paraphrasing here) when one of his distinguished colleagues Michio Kaku has looked into the subject himself and found many cases compelling. In other words, an Air Force Pilot or Astronaut are not lunatics.

On the other side lets take global warming. I am firmly in the skeptic camp on this front for one reason, the scientists promoting Global Warming alarm act very much like the skeptics or debunkers in the anti UFO camp.

They act unscientific first of all by claiming a consensus exists. The consensus is also that UFOs are not real. It used to be consensus that women should not vote. These consensus arguments are always used when there is a lack of genuine proof. The alarmists ignore science, by claiming that CO2 is a pollutant and that we MUST lower the atmospheric concentration of this evil molecule before the earth overheats.

Over geological time periods temperature & CO2 concentration simply do not have a lock step relationship, that is not an argument that is fact. They also ignore the ecological benefits of CO2. Higher yields of crops, increase in vegetation, global greening and the receding desert. Should the UNIPCC get their way and lower the CO2 concentration to 150ppm or lower like they have expressed in official documents, then life on Earth would start to die off as many plants cannot exist in an atmosphere with so little CO2. As plants die off and then animals. This anti scientific mind set has co opted so many environmentalists these days that in order to be considered an environmentalist, you must identify with the group calling for a ban on fossil fuels.

Fossil fuels MUST be replaced because of the CO2 they emit. If we were to ban all fossil fuels today, or in 5 years or 10 years, what would follow would be mass die offs. All of our farming techniques to feed our populations require of fossil fuels, there is no replacement available.

Now this leads to another topic that has also been covered on this thread, over population. If we go back in time to Giammaria Ortes or to Thomas Malthus, or even to the writings of "The Old Oligarch" population control was always considered a major problem. From having too many people pushing down on the breast of Mother Earth to rising living standards and wealth of the ordinary man, elites have always considered population the road to ruin. We also have more contemporary examples, in Science we have the likes of James Hansen and more popular of all, the ultimate doomsayer of humanity, Paul Erlich. Both these men couldn’t predict a day would follow the night, there are so many examples of the irrational predictions they make, it could almost be called cruel to bring them up. But again like so many people, they fail to comprehend that science and technology can improve the lives of people, that population means historically….wealth. Consider the elites today, the wonderful British Royal Family, who often talk of over population and one particular member, wishes to return as an Ebola virus to help thin out the stock.

So what are we left with just on the global warming front? We have first a very tentative hypothesis which says CO2 means higher temperatures. Well it may make a difference but in all likely hood it is impossible to detect a human fingerprint to assign a percentage of warming to human factors. Computer models are being used to estimate the warming expected and these models over predict the real world by factors of 2, 4, 8 or higher. So we are meant to use computer models to enact policy? Lunacy.

We have the benefits of slight warming clearly understood, in the UK given the stupid green energy policies enacted here, means that prices for heating the homes of people have shot up, so we can expect this many deaths of our most vulnerable people because of cold, and because they cannot afford the energy thanks to the green tariffs enacted.

Around the world these days the usual suspects point to each weather event and claim it proves global warming, or climate change. Just imagine being in an argument where the public are told that more rain, less rain, more snow, less snow, more heat, less heat, more hail less hail, terrorism, murders, rapes, car theft, late trains (and I could cite dozens of papers funded because in the grant proposal the word climate was carefully inserted) are all proofs of their hypothesis. Its an argument that cannot be lost but it is absurd.

In Paris soon leaders will all turn up for a jolly old meeting just before Christmas where millions of dollars will be spent, potentially enacting policies which will cost trillions annually, to save us from a problem that exists inside a computer system and not in the real world. I look around the world today and see the same weather patters and variation as was in existence when I started school, no change. This is a threat that exists only in the minds of wealthy westerners; it’s a hypochondria of the world that developing nations do not care about, because they have real problems like poverty and they need to get their populations out of said poverty. That is where money should be spent.

In 10 years time I will come back to this blog where the alarmist supporters will still be here. However in 2025 they will be saying "we warned you that by 2035 if we don’t cut CO2 drastically we will get sea level rise" etc.… In other words, the only thing that will have changed would the date for this impending catastrophe. Just like has recently with Michael Mann, Al Gore, Prince Edward, it’s the easiest game to play on Earth, wait until the next tipping point date comes, and then simply add 10 or 20 years.

I am not waiting 20 years, I have officially had enough of this. It is time that money were put to better use and not used to enact policies that will ultimately take away peoples freedoms.
 

DaveM

Paranormal Adept
I occasionally drop in to see what is posted here. It seems to be the same... long winded posts that go nowhere. I see lots of statistics but one thing is always missing. No one ever states what they are personally going to do to change matters. Please do not say that you plan to vote in a different set of politicians. Politicians take their money and orders from whatever interest groups and nothing really changes.

All the hot air expended is not going to change the environment.
 

Tyger

Paranormal Adept
First EPA chief accuses Republicans of ignoring science for political gain: William Ruckelshaus, who this week will receive the presidential medal of freedom, says candidates are harming US’s reputation ahead of Paris climate talks - November 23, 2015
LINK: First EPA chief accuses Republicans of ignoring science for political gain
TEXT: "The man considered the father figure of environmental protection in the US has attacked Republicans for “going through all the stages of denial” over climate change, accusing leading presidential contenders Donald Trump and Marco Rubio of ignoring science for political gain. William Ruckelshaus, who on Tuesday is to receive the nation’s highest civilian honor, the presidential medal of freedom, told the Guardian that leading Republicans are harming the US’s reputation by attempting to stymie efforts to tackle climate change.

"The criticism is particularly stinging as Ruckelshaus previously ran for election as a Republican and was appointed by Richard Nixon as the first head of the Environmental Protection Agency in 1970. Ronald Reagan appointed him to a second term at the federal regulator in 1983. “The [Obama] administration is trying to lead on climate change but they aren’t getting much support from the Republicans who have turned it into a partisan issue, which is too bad,” Ruckelshaus said. “If they are successful, that will set us back a fair bit. It won’t look good to the world and it won’t be good for the US.”

"Republican leaders, who have signaled their opposition to any deal at looming climate talks in Paris, have attempted to dismantle key elements of Barack Obama’s strategy to lower emissions. The Republican-dominated Senate voted on Tuesday to repeal Obama’s centerpiece policy that uses the EPA to enforce rules to cut pollution from power plants. Mitch McConnell, the senate majority leader, said Republicans were protecting middle-class Americans from “deeply regressive energy regulations that would eliminate good-paying jobs and punish the poor”. Obama has vowed to veto any repeal, but any Republican who succeeded him as president appears unlikely to follow suit. Trump, a leading contender for the Republican nomination, has called global warming “bullshit” and a “total and very expensive hoax”.

"Ben Carson, another potential nominee, has said climate change is “not a big deal”, while Florida senator Marco Rubio said last year that scientists have taken “a handful of decades of research and say that this is now evidence of a longer-term trend that’s directly and almost solely attributable to man-made activity. I don’t agree with that.” Ruckelshaus criticised the current Republican leadership for “resisting doing anything” on climate change in a bid to appease the party’s increasingly conservative voting base.

"The 83-year-old was appointed the first administrator of the EPA in 1970 by Nixon, leading the landmark introduction of pollution regulations before standing down in 1973. He then served a second stint heading the federal regulator under Ronald Reagan from 1983 to 1985. Prior to the EPA, he ran for the Senate as a Republican.

" “The Republicans aren’t helping, they are just responding to the convictions of the base that climate change isn’t a real problem and feeding that back to them – it’s a vicious cycle,” he said. “Instead of treating it as a serious problem they are going through all the stages of denial. They are now at the stage of saying that it’s too expensive to do anything about climate change, which is no solution at all, they may as well just deny it’s a problem.

" “I don’t know what Trump actually knows about climate change, I don’t think Trump thinks much about many of the issues. Rubio shifts around a lot because he hears a lot of different messages from his constituents but what he’s essentially saying is that climate change isn’t a big enough problem to address. That comes down to not dealing with it. It’s concerning and I don’t understand why they don’t see this as an opportunity rather than something to be denied.”

" “There was huge resistance from the auto industry, they pushed back very hard,” Ruckelshaus said. “The difference from then until now is that the public demanded something be done about pollution and the government listened. The four major auto companies sent their CEOs to lobby against the Clean Air Act and they got about three votes in the Senate and not many more in the House. They thought they’d get it reversed in the House and they didn’t get anywhere.

" “In those days you could smell and touch the pollution, it was a bit like how China’s cities are today. That had a galvanizing effect. The greenhouse gases of today, you can’t see or taste or feel them. And it’s got way too partisan. The atmosphere today is completely different to the 1970s; Republicans’ arguments are all partisan driven, they aren’t based on any legitimate analysis of science.”

"Under Obama’s plan to slash the US’s output of greenhouse gases, the EPA will treat carbon dioxide as a pollutant and will ensure that power plants cut emissions by 32% by 2030 on 2005 levels. A coalition of 24 states and a coal mining companies have filed lawsuits against what they call the “flatly illegal” regulations, claiming that they represent an overreach of executive power. But Ruckelshaus said the new use of the EPA’s powers was “exactly how the Clean Air Act was meant to work in the first place. If the states didn’t meet standards to protect public health, the federal government stepped in, that’s how it was set up,” he said. “Congress is now threatening all sorts of things but if you don’t like the laws you rewrite them not complain about them. The EPA has to keep enforcing the law, they don’t have a choice. It would be underreach if they didn’t enforce the law and protect public health.”

"The former EPA administrator will be honoured primarily for his environmental work but he is also known for resigning as deputy attorney general in October 1973 amid the Watergate crisis after refusing to dismiss the special prosecutor in the case. “Not all the calls I’ve received from the White House have been welcome ones, but this latest one certainly was,” he said. “Never in my wildest dreams did I think I’d be honoured like this.”

William Ruckleshaus
1932: Born in Indianapolis, Indiana.

1960: Made deputy attorney general of Indiana at 28 years old.

1968: Ran for the US Senate as a Republican, losing narrowly to Birch Bayh.

1970: Appointed the first administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency by President Richard Nixon.

1973: After bringing in landmark regulations of transport pollution and banning the pesticide DDT, Clean Air Act is enshrined in US law. Ruckelshaus shifts to become acting director of the FBI.

1973: In the same year, Ruckelshaus is appointed deputy attorney general of the US Department of Justice. He subsequently resigns the position, along with his boss Elliot Richardson, rather than obey an order from Nixon to fire Archibald Cox, the special prosector in the Watergate scandal. The event is known as the ‘Saturday night massacre’.

1983: Appointed to second stint as EPA administrator by President Ronald Reagan.

1985: Retires as EPA head.

2008: Endorses Barack Obama for president.
 
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