Poznan: Surrealism Reigns at Climate Conference

“Welcome to the Hotel California. Such a lovely place. Such a lovely place.”

That Eagles’ classic was playing on the taxicab radio when I arrived in Poznan, Poland last night for the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. The cabbie, who doesn’t speak a word of English, couldn’t be blamed for the set-up, but it was a perfect theme song.

This is a climate change conference at which nothing is expected to change. As reported earlier, no one anticipates anything positive from the Americans or (naturally) the Canadians, but even the European powers that once showed admirable leadership on this issue are backing away from action.

Great Idea! Bob Lutz Offers Himself as GM Sacrifice

If Congress wants a sacrifice, it should be me.”

- GM Vice Chairman Bob Lutz

We don’t often agree with GM’s head of product development, but on this point, Bob Lutz has a point.

As we reported the other day, Lutz is the quotable character who is struggling to position GM as a conscientious green company, even while continuing to deny climate change and to blame his company’s disastrous condition on everyone but management.

In his most recent gaffe, Lutz told CBS News today that whoever is charged with monitoring the U.S.  government’s auto-industry bailout should look harshly on the negative impact caused by California fuel regulations.

The Reality of Clean Coal [video]

A new campaign has been launched taking straight aim at the multi-million dollar effort by the coal industry and their front groups to convince us all that somehow the dirtiest energy source in the world is somehow clean.

The reality is that coal is dirty and the industry knows it. Why else would the coal companies funnel tens of millions to a group called Americans Coalition Clean Coal Electricity (ACCCE)?

As this new campaign points out, there’s simply no such thing as clean coal technology:

Check out writer Adam Seigel for a comprehensive look at coal: “This is Reality”: “Clean Coal” Vaporware

Poznan, Sleep Deprivation and Promises of Disappointment

Dense fog hangs inside and outside the Frankfurt airport, a hazy waypoint on the road to Poznan.

As the most dedicated climate policy watchers all know, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change is currently in its 14th session in Poznan, Poland. For the last week, senior climate policy negotiators from around the world have been feeling one another out, testing support for ambitious greenhouse gas reduction targets to replace the now irrelevant Kyoto accord (which times out in 2012).

This week, a collection of politicians are scheduled to join the party, and the early reports suggest that they will shift the mood from merely pessimistic to decidedly defeatist.

On behalf of the DeSmogBlog, I will be on the ground in Poznan, ready to bring you the news.

GM VP Bob Lutz's green pose is (what's the phrase?) a "total crock of sh#t"

Among the most galling visions, as U.S. carmakers stand cap-in-hand before the American people, is the site of a preening GM Vice President Bob Lutz pretending to be green.

Lutz is firmly on the record as someone who is too lazy, too ideologically hidebound or just too stupid to look at the latest robust and frightening science of climate change. He has dismissed global warming as “a total crock of shit,” saying that he puts his faith in the signatories of the laughable Oregon petition.

Lutz has tried to reassure us in the past by saying, “My thoughts on what has or hasn’t been the cause of climate change have nothing to do with the decisions I make to advance the cause of General Motors.” Which raises an interesting question: why would Congress bet billions on a policy maker who would dismiss out of hand the biggest environmental crisis in human history, and then go on making self-destructive decisions that drive his company to the brink of bankruptcy?

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