Senator James Inhofe Rehashed Skeptic Screed Getting Old

He may only be part of a noisy minority, but Sen. James Inhofe (R-OK) isn’t about to let his fringe status get in the way of his latest skeptic shtick.

As he did last year, Inhofe, writing under the guise of the Minority on the Senate Committee on Environment & Public Works, has penned another anti-global warming screed with the help of his staffer, Marc Morano, entitled “UN Blowback: More than 650 International Scientists Dissent over Man-Made Global Warming Claims”. And, like last year, Inhofe’s laughable attempt at a serious “report” falls flat on its face upon any close scrutiny.

While there is much that could be singled out for ridicule in the senator’s report, I’ll focus on what I’ll call the skeptics’ “greatest hits” (i.e. the wrong-headed arguments they’ve been trotting out for months, if not years, to “prove” their point).

Let’s start with the claim made in the report’s title: that “half of warming” is due to solar forcing.

Despite being debunked over and over again, skeptics like Inhofe have latched onto a few studies published during the last decade that purported to show a link between solar activity – cosmic rays, in particular – and rising greenhouse gas emissions. (The idea being that cosmic rays helped water droplets form in the atmosphere, leading to increased cloud clover and, thus, lower average temperatures.)

Chinese build electric car while US automakers beg for money

Chinese auto-manufacturer BYD (Build Your Own Dreams), which is partially owned by billionare finance guru Warren Buffet, has unveiled its new plug-in hybrid today.

BDY’s F3DM model can travel up to 100 kilometers (62 miles) on a single battery charge and it contains a back-up independent gas-powered motor. The big kicker is that its retail price is $22,000 US, making it a lot cheaper than General Motor’s plug-in Chevy Volt which will not be on the market for another couple of years and will cost around $40,000 US - and that’s with government subsidies.

No wonder General Motors and the other US automakers are begging for a bailout, their competitors are kicking their butts.

Joe Romm at Climate Progress has an in-depth look at the BYD pug-in: World’s first mass-market plug-in hybrid is from … China, for $22,000?

DeSmog Exclusive: The Policy Communications Inc. Astroturf Shell Game

Desmog Blog has uncovered an energy industry-backed astro-turf network concocted by a single PR/Lobbying firm that is working to undermine the efforts of environmental groups and organizations like the Western Climate Initiative (WCI). that are pushing for solutions to climate change.



The Top of the Pyramid

At the top of the network is a PR/Lobby firm with offices in Colorado and Washington, DC called Policy Communications Inc. The firms principals are:

Jim Sims, President/CEO

Holly Propst, Senior Vice President

Greg Schnacke, Vice President

Paul Poister, Vice President

Britt Weygandt , Vice President

Cody Stewart, Policy Specialist

Poznan: "Such a catastrophe"

It’s not even a full sentence, but when Katherine Trajan uttered those three words - “Such a catastrophe” - it seemed to sum up perfectly the declining state of our natural world and the tragic inadequacy of our response.

Trajan is just 25 – too young to be jaded, too bright, too pretty and too generally promising to be giving over to despair. Yet, as the 14th Conference of the Parties (COP) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) was drawing to a close in Poznan, Poland, there was surely a note of despair in her voice.

Originally from the Canadian town of Nanimo, B.C., she had come to Poland as one of 27 non-governmental observers in the Canadian Youth Climate Coalition, and she had come with high hopes. “I came believing that these world leaders were going to come together, recognizing the seriousness of the (climate change) problem, make an agreement and then go home and do something about it.”

As it turns out: Not.

Poznan: Canada replaces U.S. as "single worst" country

After eight years during which the United States was consistently derided as the most obstructive force in international climate negotiations, Canada moved into worst place today, receiving the “Colossal Fossil” award for having done more than any other country to drag down talks at the UN climate negotiations in Poznan.

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