Bush, Harper, Howard: Lies, damn lies and statistics

The three “world leaders” who are working hardest these days to kill the Kyoto Accord are also asking their public to believe numbers that are, at best, misleading.

U.S. President George Bush, Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Australian Prime Minister John Howard lead three of the richest countries in the world and the three leading per capita greenhouse gas emitters among major nations. All three have rejected the Kyoto Accord - or any other fixed and measurable limit on greenhouse gas emissions - preferring “aspirational” targets that are voluntary and keyed off “carbon intensity.” All three are also straining credulity in making their case.

The Paradox of Al Gore

The Paradox of Al Gore When Al Gore won the Nobel Peace prize last Friday–along with the very deserving U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change–the fulminations predictably followed. Previous victims of what Paul Krugman calls “Gore Derangement Syndrome” had new flare-ups of the disease, often in the most embarrassing of places. There was a rash of bad science reporting, suggesting that Gore's An Inconvenient Truth (the film version) is somehow much more inaccurate than it actually is.

And then came the powerful defenses of Gore, the skewerings of the Gore deranged, and just general voicing of reason. Alas, the Gore defenders, while being broadly accurate about Gore's “broadly accurate” film, also seem to have missed some key matters that bear addressing.

So let's add some needed perspective here.

A DeSmogBlog exclusive weekly column by best-selling author and science writer, Chris Mooney.

Does This Count as a National Post Apology?

The National Post, having humiliated itself on the weekend with an assault on everything from Mother Teresa to UN peacekeeping has offered a Counterpoint today that reads awfully like a mea culpa.

Entitled Hate Al Gore All You Like, Global Warming is Real, the article by CFRB DJ John Moore rips into the Post's anti-Gore screed and especially business editor Terence Corcoran's desperate effort to suggest that the science behind climate change is still somehow uncertain.

Canadian Climate Change Policy: Let's Be First Among the World's Worst Polluters

The Throne Speech authored by Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper promised yesterday a 20-per-cent reduction in greenhouse gases (GHGs) by 2020. By all the evidence, that was politicalspeak for: We're going to do less and take longer than you could ever have imagined.

Speak Up, David, Goliath Has A Hearing Problem

David Suzuki, Canada's best-known environmentalist, has spent a generation encouraging Canadians to look after the environment, but it seems they have not been listening.

While Canada ratified the 1997 Kyoto Protocol on limiting greenhouse gas emissions, the current, Conservative government says the standards cannot be met, reopening a debate he thought had been won.

“We've already been here before, and that's the thing that breaks my heart,” he told Reuters during one of his frequent trips to Toronto from his home in Vancouver. “If we had taken it seriously and done something, we would be so far past the Kyoto target today, and the problems would be infinitely simpler and cheaper.”

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