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The dirty lowdown about Canada's commitment to Kyoto

If anyone hasn't already read Jeffrey Simpson's Globe and Mail column today, it's worth a look.

Simpson points out that while the U.S. has been thumbing its nose at Kyoto and flagrantly ignoring the climate change crisis, it has still outperformed Canada, where everyone apparently drives single-occupancy SUVs to their environmental awareness meetings.

Transcendental Medication

The on-line Investors.com, puts the lie to the notion that investors are long-term thinkers with a piece entitled The EU’s Global Warming Fantasy. The article hammers away at Europe for having tried, but so far failed, to meet its Kyoto commitments. Much better the American way to not try at all.

If you start reading this piece looking for a cogent argument on what will happen if everyone takes the American path, you’ll be disappointed. But it’s worth forging on to the columnist’s last line: “The U.S. doesn’t need to ‘sign on’ to a new Kyoto deal — especially if, through technology and common sense, it can transcend it.”

The Daily Doubter

Wednesday’s Calgary Sun brought the triumphal announcement that we can stop worrying about global warming: “GLOBAL SCAM; KYOTO MAY JUST BE BAD SCIENCE.” The story, by Editor Licia Corbella, opened by saying:

“Many of the world’s top climatologists who live right here in Canada, have not even bothered to take a short train ride to attend the meeting. Why? Well, let’s ask Dr. Tim Patterson, a professor in the Department of Earth Sciences (paleoclimatology) at Carleton University in Ottawa and a world-renowned expert in the field.”

“I can’t be bothered,” he replied from his university office. “It’s just a waste of time.

Real Climate Scientists Talking About RealClimate Science

Confused by the news? Check out www.realclimate.org, “a commentary site on climate science by working climate scientists for the interested public and journalists.” Great stuff. You can quibble about their posts or pose questions for future analysis. They also back everything up with peer-reviewed papers.

... and check out the Christmas Gifts for Tim Patterson

A great selection of books for the uninitiated, the unwilling or the uninformed can be found at the RealClimate book wrap-up. Great reading on great reading.

Remedial Reading: Defending clarity of thought, on climate or other issues

Whenever someone is tredding carelessly through your brain, intentionally causing confusion or hapharzardly clogging up the works, it’s good to go back to first principles. George Orwell said a lot of this best in his 1945 essay: Politics and the English Language.

... and speaking of George Orwell

The world’s most prescient conspiracy theorist didn’t invent the world “doublespeak” even if he might have intended to do so. Wikipedia has the scoop.

Just because they're European doesn't mean they're wrong

A Deutche Welle feature from Nov. 29, 2005, began, as the UN climate summit began, with the European Environment Agency warning: “Europe is facing the worst climate change in five millennia as a result of global warming.” EAA Executive Director Jacqueline McGlade said, “Even if we constrain global warming to the EU target of a two-degree (Celsius) increase, we will be living in atmospheric conditions that human beings have never experienced. Deeper cuts in emissions are needed.”

The Big Chill: Counterintuitive Global Warming effects

Nature magazine has a chilling article in this issue tracking the enui that seems to be overtaking the Gulf Current.

It seems that as the ocean warms, it also becomes less active. Thus, the Gulf Stream might ultimately stop flowing north, while the once-icy Arctic waters will stop flowing south. This might be “Good for Canada” (see next post), as Newfoundland suffers less the effect of the Arctic backflow, but it could equally be devastating for much of Northern Europe, which depends on the warm Gulf waters to moderate its climate.

Mindless Media: A little climate change knowledge is a dangerous thing ...

A wonderfully reassuring headline appeared in Toronto’s National Post newspaper on Wednesday, Nov. 30, 2005: Global Warming: Good for Canada.

This flat statement of fact was offered over a story by “Science writer Stephen Strauss,” who set about debunking an earlier story that had warned of the possibility of severe droughts changing the landscape on the Canadian prairie. Strauss had done a little extra work on the file and found that the full Nature magazine article had said, in Strauss’s words “These models predict that because of global warming, most of Western Canada is going to get wetter. A lot wetter.”

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