Jeff Goodell, our roving reporter at the American Geophysical Union’s fall meeting, filed his second dispatch after the talk by the nation’s leading climate scientist.
Maybe Justin Timberlake or Barry Manilow draws a more adoring crowd, but I doubt it. Hansen is not just a rock start here at AGU, but the one true prophet, the Man Who Saw It All Before Anyone Else. And Hansen, in his own quiet way, did not disappoint.
The themes of his talk were not new to anyone who has heard him speak recently (or to readers of Climate Progress) — the dangers of runaway warming, the need to keep CO2 level in the atmosphere at 350 ppm or lower, the urgency of phasing out coal by 2030. Today, Hansen laid it all out with dry, devestating precision.
Near the end of his talk, he predicted that, because of the earth’s current energy balance and the coming solar cycles:
In his first term, President-elect Obama is likely to face even higher global temperatures.
Of course, given that Hansen has called for public demonstrations against coal plants, it was hard not to read this as a warming about the rising political heat Obama will face too. Or, to put it another way, if Hansen is feeling optimistic about the coming change in administration, he gave no indication of it. “I think we could solve this problem if we would just tell the truth,” Hansen said during the Q & A session after the talk. “But politicians aren’t willing. How do we make them understand how serious this is?”
- Stabilize at 350 ppm or risk ice-free planet, warn NASA, Yale, Sheffield, Versailles, Boston et al
- Drilling off-shore is a “crazy thing” says Hansen on 20th anniversary of his famous testimony
- ‘Tipping Point’ — A non-technical Hansen piece
- Hansen’s plea for leadership to Nevada Gov.
- Hansen: Yankee Ticket Prices and Fossil Fuels
- NASA’s Hansen responds to NYT’s Revkin
- Hansen (et al) must read: Get back to 350 ppm or risk an ice-free planet
- Hansen throws cold water on cooling climate claim
- Hansen: The Shadow on American Democracy
- Dr. Hansen to Dr. Merkel: Carbon is forever — so ban new traditional coal plants now
- Hansen’s op-ed advice to Massachusetts
- NASA: 2007 Second Warmest Year Ever, with Record Warmth Likely by 2010
- Hansen apologizes, warns against “averting our eyes”
- Hansen stands by coal train/death train analogy
- James Hansen, writing on peak oil, gets rejected
- Hansen’s final Iowa testimony
- More swiftboating of James Hansen
- Another “Must Read” from Hansen: ‘Long-term’ climate sensitivity of 6°C for doubled CO2
- A Must Read: “Global Temperature Change,” by James Hansen et al.
- Hansen 1: Sea Level Rise
- Hansen 2: Iowa Edition of Declaration of Stewardship
- Hansen on “Fossil Fuel Subsidies”
- Hansen on “Who Killed the Electric Car?”
- NASA’s Hansen on Live Earth, Gore, and Coal
- Hansen on “civil disobedience”
- Hansen’s “Two Plus Two Solution” to Global Warming