climate change

Business mouthpiece casts wide net in latest bid to derail climate-change efforts

True to form, the Wall Street Journal has slammed former Vice President and Nobel Prize winner Al Gore and tried to discredit the science arguing the case for global warming. In so doing, the pro-business bastion appears to be as far out of step with the forces driving the U.S. economy as the Bush Administration is with the majority of the U.S. electorate.

The crux of the Journal’s argument is contained in a question: “What if everyone believes in global warmism only because everyone believes in global warmism?” Here’s a better question: What if they’re right?

You Might Die - But it Will Cost Too Much To Do Anything So Let's Not.

If you were told that you had a fatal disease and a Doctor told you how to get better, but then an economist came along and told you that the cost of treating you would be too high so it would be better not to do anything - would you sit there and wait to die?

It's that kind of inane logic that governs this quote from Cato Institute Senior fellow, Jerry Taylor who said, “scientists are in no position to intelligently guide public policy on climate change.” Scientists can lay out scenarios, but it is up to economists to weigh the costs and benefits and many of them say the costs of cutting emissions are higher than the benefits”.

A Climactic Scandal? Harper Government Cannot Account for $1.5 billion in Climate Change Funds

Yesterday at a meeting of the Standing Committee on Environment and Sustainable Development, Canada's Minister of the Environment waffled about heavily and refused to provide a full accounting of the government's $1.519 billion Canada Eco Trust Fund for Clean Air and Climate Change.

This follows on criticism two weeks ago of the Eco Trust by the government's Auditor General, Sheila Fraser, who stated:

We are deeply concerned about very large transfers being made purportedly for certain purposes. But when you look at the actual agreements there are absolutely no conditions requiring the recipient to use the moneys for the purposes being announced.”

Lacking the oversight guaranteeing that monies provided to the provinces will be spent appropriately is bad enough, but even worse it appears the government cannot even account for monies spent to date.

DSCOVR Grounded by Office Politics?

They spent $100 million on the spacecraft. It’s finished.
Two other countries and another US government agency have offered to launch it at no cost to NASA.
Yet it still remains in a box.

U.S.- China intransigence imperils climate-change breakthrough in Bali

If members of the 187 nations in Bali, Indonesia, are going to reach explicit agreement on a successor to the Kyoto Protocol, the world’s largest greenhouse-gas spewers are going to have to come on board.

The U.S. and China are responsible for some 40 per cent of global emissions and their commitment is essential to rein in global warming.

Neither has shown willingness to make concessions, however, thus reducing the current round of talks to a political tap-dance.

Alaska's Sen. Ted Stevens: It's sunspots! Let's get out the oil drills

At a meeting of the US Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation, Alaska's Senator Ted Stevens claimed that the unprecedented decline in Arctic sea ice melting is probably due to sunspots.

Of course, if a major plank in your political platform is the opening up of Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil exploration, you probably would be inclined to grasp at anything to discredit the human-induced theory of global warming as well.

Soaring divorce rates cited as factor in global warming, environmental stress

As world leaders in Bali strive for agreement on a successor to the Kyoto Protocol, a new study in the U.S. has given the climate-change struggle a domestic perspective.

The escalating number of divorces leads to greater use of energy, researchers say, and governments should take this into account when formulating environmental policies.

New York Times Features DeSmog's 100 Year Letter Project

Check out the New York Times today. 

Science writer Andrew Revkin mentions our 100 Year Letter Project here.

And if that wasn't enough, he also wrote a more in-depth piece on his new Dot Earth blog.   

If you haven't written your entry for the 100 Year Letter Project, please do. In fact, we've decided that the best letters every month will receive a DeSmogBlog swag bag, including the much-coveted DeSmog t-shirt.

We have quite a few already and will start posting them over the next week.

James Hansen and the Holocaust Frame: not even heroes are perfect

Just in case you were wondering, the new Beowulf movie is pretty awful–but there's at least one thing interesting about it. It turns a heroic character without any apparent flaws (the original Beowulf) into a guy that, well, has loads of them. In so doing, it modernizes the story (and, as it happens, trashes the original poem).

Weirdly, I thought of Beowulf when I read the latest about NASA's James Hansen, our most famous climate scientist, who used an unfortunate Holocaust-related analogy to discuss the impact of global warming on endangered species in recent testimony in his home state, Iowa.

Washington State Rejects Coal Plant Over Global Warming Concerns

A Washington State panel has rejected plans for a 793-megawatt plant in Kalama, Cowlitz County, that would be fueled by coal or oil-refinery waste.

The coal plant was rejected on the grounds that it did not meet the State's new law that any new power plant must limit the amount of its global warming emissions to that of a highly efficient natural gas plant.

If a plant emits more than that, then it has to capture and sequester the extra emissions permanently.

Sustainablog has more. 

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