Local Regina publication, Prairie Dog Magazine, is laying down the gauntlet by asking climate change skeptics to record their doubts on paper.
The magazine has created a declaration that outlines various scenarios for rejecting scientific consensus and has mailed it to several public figures who have openly expressed skepticism on the issue of global warming, including Stephen Harper, Margaret Wente, Rex Murphy, Tim Ball and Ross McKitrick amongst others.
The plan to check in with the skeptics in 10 years is all about “accountability” and the magazine states that should they be wrong they will give credit where credit is due. And if they’re right…..it’s a sad bet to win.
WASHINGTON – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today denied 10 petitions challenging its 2009 endangerment finding which said that climate change is real, is occurring due to emissions of greenhouse gases from human activities, and threatens human health and the environment.
EPA found no evidence to support the claims of the petitions which assert that a conspiracy invalidates the findings of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, and the U.S. Global Change Research Program. On the contrary, EPA’s review of the petitions found that climate science is credible, compelling, and growing stronger.
“The endangerment finding is based on years of science from the U.S. and around the world. These petitions – based as they are on selectively edited, out-of-context data and a manufactured controversy – provide no evidence to undermine our determination. Excess greenhouse gases are a threat to our health and welfare,” said EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson.
“Defenders of the status quo will try to slow our efforts to get America running on clean energy. A better solution would be to join the vast majority of the American people who want to see more green jobs, more clean energy innovation and an end to the oil addiction that pollutes our planet and jeopardizes our national security.”
An international team of climate scientists led by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has confirmed that climate change is “undeniable” and clearly driven by the “human fingerprints” of greenhouse gas emissions. The findings are based on new data that was not reviewed during the most recent 2007 report by the UNIntergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
The Financial Times reported today that the NOAA study drew on 11 different indicators of climate, and “found that each one pointed to a world that was warming owing to the influence of greenhouse gases.”
The scientists confirmed that seven of the indicators are rising, including air temperature over land, sea-surface temperature, marine air temperature, sea level, ocean heat, humidity, and tropospheric temperature in the “active-weather” layer of the atmosphere closest to the earth’s surface. Four other indicators were declining: Arctic sea ice, glaciers, spring snow cover in the northern hemisphere, and stratospheric temperatures.
The Financial Times quotes Peter Stott, head of climate monitoring at the UK Met Office, stating:
“The whole of the climate system is acting in a way consistent with the effects of greenhouse gases. The fingerprints are clear. The glaringly obvious explanation for this is warming from greenhouse gases.”
Glaringly obvious, unless you are a climate skeptic who denies the facts in favor of touting manufactured scandals like “Climategate” - a mythical tale ginned up by the climate denial machine to further confuse the public about the real dangers of climate change.
One of the enduring myths of climate denialism is that global warming stopped sometime in the last decade. I see it in the blaring headlines of pseudoscience websites, in comments on my videos, even some of our most “distinguished” journalists have been taken in.
Rep. John Shimkus (R-IL) shared a moment of sheer absurdity with Britain’s stuffiest global warming denier Lord Christopher Monckton in last week’s Energy & Commerce hearing on climate change adaptation.
Shimkus encouraged Lord Monckton - who has absolutely no background in climate science whatsoever - to talk about how Earth is a “carbon starved” planet, making it seem as though we desperately need to seek out new sources of CO2 emissions if we have any hope for survival as a species. After all, the pair agreed, “carbon dioxide is plant food,” so why on Earth would we want to cut carbon emissions from coal-fired power plants and other sources?
As a journalist, one might hope Lord Monckton would know better, but you wouldn’t get that impression from listening to his zany answers to Shimkus’s questions.
For example, Monckton cites the Cambrian period as evidence that plants love carbon dioxide.
While climate isn't the only focus of the new JPL blog, so far there has been a pretty heavy focus on the issue. So grab the JPL blog's RSS feed and keep up-to-date on the latest in climate change science through the eyes of an actual climate scientist.
A scathing report from NASA this week slammed their own PR department for systematically misleading the public on climate science.
The Inspector General of NASA penned the investigation in response to a complaint by fourteen US Senators, alleging that NASA was colluding with the White House to downplay the known dangers of climate change. Specifically, the Senators wanted NASA “to conduct a full and thorough investigation into the suppression of science and censorship of scientists at [NASA].”
A Canwest New Service story just hit the wire reporting that all Environment Canada scientists now must refer all media queries to Ottawa where communications officers will help them respond with “approved lines.”
According to documents obtained by Canwest, this new policy is in place to “ensure there are no “surprises” for Environment Minister John Baird and senior management when they open the newspaper or turn on the television.”
Democracy is utterly dependent upon an electorate that is accurately informed. In promoting climate change denial (and often denying their responsibility for doing so) industry has done more than endanger the environment. It has undermined democracy.
There is a vast difference between putting forth a point of view, honestly held, and intentionally sowing the seeds of confusion. Free speech does not include the right to deceive. Deception is not a point of view. And the right to disagree does not include a right to intentionally subvert the public awareness.