Ireland's Democratic Union Party can't have its Climate Cake

There’s those few dinosaurs left out there who refuse to acknowledge the decades of science telling us that human activity is to blame for global warming. One of them just so happens to be the environment minister for Northern Ireland. 

North Ireland’s Environment Minister, Sammy Wilson, has blocked a series of public awareness ads on energy consumption and climate change calling it an “insidious propaganda campaign.” In a recent letter Wilson stated that he does “not believe that man-made greenhouse gas emissions are the main cause of climate change,” and that such campaigns promote “anthropogenic [human-made] climate change as gospel and as you are of no doubt aware, this is contrary to my views.”

In an odd statement on his website, titled “Sammy Wilson slams climate change deniers” Wilson states:

“Spending a day with Prince Charles has not caused me to have a Road to Damascus like conversion in regards to my views on climate change.

Although I do not believe in man made global warming, I do subscribe to the fact that there has been a change in the political climate in Northern Ireland over the last number of years, which was not naturally occurring but caused by the DUP.”

But it looks like the leadership of the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), of which Wilson is a member, wants to have its climate cake and eat it too. The DUP is touting a climate agenda, but refusing to take action against they’re head-in-the-sand environment minister.

Landmark Settlement Makes U.S. Agencies Acknowledge Climate Change

Under the terms of a landmark settlement reached last Friday, U.S. financing agencies will no longer be able to ignore the climate change repercussions of their actions.

Close to seven years and several bruising court battles later, a coalition of environmental groups and eco-minded cities have succeeded in forcing the Export-Import Bank and Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) to do the unthinkable: acknowledge the reality of climate change and obey the law.

California Drownin'

The denial machine regularly recycles phony findings that climate change won’t be all that bad, or is all a big mistake. Meanwhile in the real world, the scientific implications of global warming just keep getting worse.

The latest is a paper published in the prestigious journal Science showing that melting ice caps in Antarctica will unevenly flood the planet – leading to much higher sea level rise in heavily populated areas of the northern hemisphere than previously believed.

According to these latest figures, Washington, New York and California could see the ocean rise by more than 21 feet - up to 25% higher than previously projected. Southern Florida could disappear entirely beneath the waves.sea level rise map

For years researchers assumed that the world’s oceans would behave like a bathtub in a warming world – any additional water from melting ice would spread evenly around the globe. Not true according to the researchers at Oregon State University, and the reasons illustrate the enormous forces being unleashed by our continued addiction to fossil fuels.

So colossal is the Antarctic ice mass that it exerts a powerful gravitational pull on surrounding waters, raising local sea levels. As this melting mass pours into the ocean, this effect will dissipate, redistributing waters elsewhere in the world.

When an ice sheet melts, sea level does not change uniformly,” says Jerry Mitrovica, a geophysicist at the University of Toronto. “You get this whopping amplification of sea-level rise in North America.”

Scientists had also not considered what would happen to the underlying landmass when the incredible weight of Antarctic ice is released in a warming world. Researchers now believe that the Antarctic bedrock that currently sits under the ice sheet will slowly rebound upwards, pushing huge amounts of water out into the ocean.

Lindzen's Thermostat Theory Swallowed by Giant Snake

A favorite theory of prominent “skeptic” Dr. Richard Lindzen just had a fatal encounter with a 60 million old snake.

Researchers from the University of Toronto discovered the bones of this massive bus-sized reptile in a coal mine in Columbia and published their findings in the prestigious journal Nature. How big was this monster? About 42 feet long, it weighed as much a small car. It would have had trouble slithering through a standard doorway. Its girth would come up to your belly button. 

The size of this massive snake also shows the tropics were much warmer than previously believed. Snake size depends on temperature - the hotter the bigger. For this beast that snacked on crocodiles to thrive, temperatures in the tropics must have averaged 30 to 34 degrees Celsius – three to four degrees hotter than the present. That throws cold water on the “thermostat” theory championed by Lindzen that in a warming world, the poles will warm much more than the equator, sparing the tropics from the worst of climate change.

About the Western Business Roundtable (WBR)

The Western Business Roundtable (WBR) is run by energy lobbyists with a history of using astroturf organizations as a means of advancing their client’s interests.

We have previously reported our extensive research on the Western Business Roundtable and Policy Communications Inc.,(the PR/Lobby firm that concocted the WBR), but we thought it worthwhile to summarize and update our findings in light of some anticipated activities we’ve gotten wind of.

The rumor is that the WCB will be releasing an economic impact study on the Western Climate Initiative during the week of February 16th, 2009. As we have reported previously, the WBR is providing their energy industry clients the ability to make life very difficult for the Western Climate Initiative. Considering the history and past strategies employed by Policy Communications Inc., it won’t be much of a shocker if their soon-to-be-released report will attempt to paint an extreme view of economic doom and gloom. And watch them flog the report hard with key reporters.

(If anyone gets a hold of an advance copy I would love to get my hands on it, anonymity guaranteed of course.)

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