Help Write a Title for the First DeSmogBlog Book

The first DeSmogBlog book is far enough along that our publisher is demanding a title, so we’re looking for feedback - and we have three other great climate change books to reward the best responses or suggestions.

The titles we are tentatively considering include:

Climate Science Fiction: Exposing the PR Campaign to Deny Global Warming

Courting Climate Chaos: Exploring the PR Campaign to Deny Global Warming

Fossil Fools: The PR Tactics used to Bamboozle the World about Climate Change

Solar Forcing and Global Warming: Here We Go Again

Global warming skepticism knows no (planetary) bounds. The big scientific news of the week was the discovery of methane plumes rising from Mars’ surface. Because methane release on Earth is commonly associated with microbial digestion, NASA researchers believe the greenhouse gas could be a sign of life.

In a new paper published in the journal Science, Michael Mumma, the project’s lead scientist, hypothesizes that bacteria buried one to two miles below the red planet’s surface could be producing the plumes. The other possibility is that the gas is being generated by vulcanism or another geologic process – though that seems less likely since there has been no evidence of active volcanoes. This uncertainty, on top of recent warming trends, has led some to speculate that solar activity may be responsible for Martian climate change.

The dramatic melting of glaciers on Mount Everest

Courtesy of SolveClimate.com comes a dramatic video showing the rapid melting of glaciers on Mount Everest.

Watch it:

Reading The Climate Change Czars

Few challenges facing America – and the world – are more urgent than combating climate change…Many of you are working to confront this challenge….but too often, Washington has failed to show the same kind of leadership. That will change when I take office.”

So began Barack Obama in a video message addressed to the Bi-Partisan Governors Global Climate Summit just weeks after the election. However, while he supports an 80 percent reduction of emissions by 2050 through a cap and trade bill, Obama’s nominations leave us uncertain of how the new administration intends to take on global warming.  

The President-elect’s energy team marks a stark contrast from George W. Bush’s inertia on climate change. Consider Steven Chu, our next Secretary of Energy: As a leading voice in the science community on the dangers of excess CO2, he will be an advocate for the development of alternatives to limit fossil fuel consumption.

Likewise, former head of the Environmental Protection Agency Carol Browner will serve as Assistant to the president for energy and climate change. Her appointment makes additional strides toward an aggressive approach because she will coordinate agency climate change policies while balancing economic and national security considerations. Another strong pick is Lisa Jackson to head the EPA who is expected to play a critical role toward establishing cap-and-trade legislation. These nominations demonstrate that science will once again be taken seriously in government.

The science team looks equally promising. John Holdren as science advisor provides Obama with an international expert on climate and energy who has long advocated for firm government regulation of greenhouse gas emissions. Adding momentum, marine scientist Jane Lubchenco should guide the Commerce department’s focus on climate policy through her role as head of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Leaked Clean Coal Strategy Memo to Peabody Energy

A 2004 memo from Steve Miller, CEO of a coal industry lobby group to the CEO of Peabody Energy, details the public relations and lobbying strategies being used to deal with issues ranging from climate change to Mercury.

When it rains it pours.

Earlier today we told you about a newsletter written by a Virginia-based public relations firm called the Hawthorn Group that sent out a newsletter to their “friends and family” outlining the work they did on behalf of a coal industry lobby group called the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity.

Now we’ve came across a 2004 memo to coal giant Peabody Energy (NYSE: BTU) from Steve Miller, then President of the Center for Energy and Economic Development (now called American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity) to Irl F. Engelhardt, the CEO of one of the largest coal companies in the world, Peabody Energy.

The memo provides a lot of insight into the strategies and tactics that the coal lobby was using at the time to spin everything from Mercury to climate change to the McCain-Lieberman bill.

Below are some of the choice quotes, if you want to download the entire document in PDF go here: Coal Industry Strategy Letter to CEO of Peabody Energy.

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