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World exclusive* video premier: Simulating and stimulating climate hope

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"World exclusive* video premier: Simulating and stimulating climate hope"

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If you want a stirring stemwinder on climate action, here it is.

The speaker is my good friend Drew Jones, coauthor of this guest blog post (“Only the most ambitious emissions reductions under discussion within UNFCCC can achieve climate goals“).

As you’ll see, Drew took to heart my earlier “Advice to a young climate blogger [and public speaker]: Always use WWII metaphors.

*Technically, this can’t be the world premiere since the video is online.  But Drew has withheld posting it anywhere else so this is the official non-YouTube world premiere.

I’m not quite as optimistic as Drew is in this talk, but more good news keeps coming from key countries like China, India, and Japan.  I am going to launch a multipart series on this important topic this week.

For more of Drew’s work, click here.

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13 Responses to World exclusive* video premier: Simulating and stimulating climate hope

  1. David B. Benson says:

    I clikced on the here and Climate Progress reported

    Sorry, no posts matched your criteria

    [JR: Fixed! That darned "http://"]

  2. paulm says:

    positive stuff.

  3. paulm says:

    I hate to insert this on such a positive post.

    It is easily within the remit of democracy, at the stage we’re at within the big picture, to allow for the immediate nationalization of the coal plants and the implementation of a switch of technology to reduce their CO2.

    This is an option that should be high on the debate now to show/demonstrate everyone how critical the situation is.

    They should certain at a minimum remove fossil fuel subsidies immediately.

    New Analysis Brings Dire Forecast Of 6.3-Degree Temperature Increase

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/09/24/AR2009092402602.html?hpid=topnews

    Climate researchers now predict the planet will warm by 6.3 degrees Fahrenheit by the end of the century even if the world’s leaders fulfill their most ambitious climate pledges..

    global temperature rise is likely to occur even if industrialized and developed countries enact every climate policy they have proposed at this point. The increase is nearly double what scientists and world policymakers have identified as the upper limit of warming the world can afford in order to avert catastrophic climate change.

    “As sobering as this report is, it is not the worst-case scenario. That would be if the world does nothing and allows heat-trapping pollution to continue to spew unchecked into the atmosphere.”

    “We face a situation where basically everybody has to do everything they can,” MacCracken said.

  4. ken levenson says:

    That’s a great talk but one question.

    Joe, do you know what natural feedbacks he’s got in his model? I don’t see the CO2 levels peaking as low as he’s claiming given what we now know about the feedbacks.

    He has included all the very recent good political news but doesn’t seem to have included the very bad recent scientific news on accelerating feedbacks. Just wondering….

  5. ourbig.ru says:

    Is it possible to be allergic to water?

  6. Larry Coleman says:

    Joe, For all these years I thought a “stemwinder” was a boring talk, so boring that it had people winding their watches in the hope/belief that the watch had stopped. “Surely, he can’t have talked only ten minutes,” the listener thinks. So your “stirring stemwinder” struck me as an oxymoron.

    Googling the term I find that your use is more common, but the boring talk definition is also in wide use. What I did not discover is a convincing explanation as to why a rousing talk would have been called a stemwinder in the first place. The explanation I found was that stemwinder watches were all the rage when they were first invented…exciting like an exciting speech. That seems a stretch to me.

  7. Drew Jones says:

    Ken Levenson asked about what’s in the model behind the talk. All the assumptions are under “technical” at http://www.climateinteractive.org/simulations/C-ROADS/overview . In short, the version of C-ROADS shown in the talk here is calibrated to be consistent with the GCMs in the IPCC’s AR4 such as MAGICC, and exclude such important tipping point feedback loops such as the albedo loop, the release of methane from permafrost, and decrease absorption of CO2 in warmer oceans. We hope to add those processes to C-ROADS as the quantification of their effects improves. Ken is correct that with those effects, it would be harder to reach climate goals. That said, the reductions shown in the simulation in the TEDx talk did NOT include non-CO2 GHGs. When we include those reductions, it makes reaching goals such as 2 degrees C more possible.

  8. David B. Benson says:

    Woody Plants Adapted To Past Climate Change More Slowly Than Herbs
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/09/090923121441.htm

    Heavier Rainstorms Ahead Due To Global Climate Change, Study Predicts
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/08/090817190638.htm

  9. Greg Robie says:

    I saw this simulation played watching the Tallberg videos from early this summer. I was unimpressed then. I am depressed watching this now. This positive spinning, while it can garner an audience that is representative of the top quintile, such “success” does not mean that our consumption choices are proof of the consummed product’s enlightenment.

    Anyway, I graduated from high school in 1969. In 2069, should there still be free public education to graduate from, people who learn of what my generation did not do, expecting a rabbit to be pulled out of a hat, will find a certain irony in the “Rocky and Bullwinkle Show” vignettes that may yet exist then—were something other than a rabbit comes out of the hat.

    I am a boomer raised in a military family of the WWII meme—but went to jail for the sake of my conscience when drafted during the Vietnam police action. I know, in ways that whatever-the-liberal-equivalent-of-a-conservative-chicken-hawk-is cannot imagine, what the hard work Drew talks about feels like. It cost you everything . . . and is worth it. Even so, sholdering this hard work is anything but a feel good experience.

    This positive spin of this simplistic “solution” to the crisis—to the doom and gloom—is a disservice to the truth. Given Drew’s clarifications, this marketing strategy amounts to little more than a false hope and Drew a false prophet. False prophets tend to experience a bad ending when the people learn the truth and turn against you (and Joe, this dynamic applies to the too rosy a cost projection of the scientifiocally inadequate ACES that you have created an echo chamber for here at CP).

    Much of the “red line’s” emissions are the consequence of the “blue line’s” consumption and investment choices (to say nothing of the foreign policies that have made (enforced) what has been needed for the “miracle” of global capitalism’s planetary cancer to be possible). Drew, if you want to make this simulation more truthful—and marketable to a global audience—factor in all of the blue line’s footprint, not just what is generated within a nation’s boundaries. When you make those adjustments, the game will play out very differently. And it is this difference that is behind the Common Dreams’ article today about CAP signaling that Copenhagen will fail.

    In addition, before glibly talking about the “green line” folk reforesting the planet’s tropics, the economic dynamics have to change to fix what caused the deforestation in the first place: IMF and World Bank loans denominated in US dollars. Such were the US’ iteration of creating banana republics that were the British model for wealth creation and planetary exploitation. “Green line” countries have had to sell whatever they can to raise US dollars to pay for the loans foisted on them by a US foreign policy that supported leaders in those countries who would sign on to the debt and remove the ones that wouldn’t.

    Fortunately, for justice, the collapse of the economic system of global capitalism is only flash frozen in its free fall. Even if the Fed succeeds in duping Congress into allowing it to create a second currency to “fix” the inflation of their monitorizing of debt has set for stage for and keep the collapse frozen a bit longer; or the G20 does so as central banker’s front men, such freezing will be thawed by the heat of the systems systemic injustice. And global warming is justice’s trump card. The “civil” society global capitalism has enabled cannot undue what it has done and retain what it thinks is positive as positive.

    No matter how we get there (and I still advocate for doing so consciously and redress the four Constitutional crisis I commented about before), the paradigm shift we are headed into is that big a sea change. What we feel is trustworthy will be given up or taken from us. It is that simple. In the process we “blue” folk (and blue folk-wanabes) will find out a lot about our hubris and humility that will do us good.

  10. paulm says:

    Even the Guardian has a difficult time posting reality on the front page…

    Front page heading…
    Met Office warns of temperature rises

    Environment page heading…
    Met Office warns of catastrophic global warming in our lifetimes

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2009/sep/28/met-office-study-global-warming

  11. paulm says:

    Now were they keeping this a secret or did they have their heads so deep in their simulations that they missed what has happened in the past and what is going on RIGHT NOW before our very eyes?

    Unchecked global warming could bring a severe temperature rise of 4C within many people’s lifetimes, according to a new report for the British government that significantly raises the stakes over climate change.

  12. paulm says:

    “It’s important to stress it’s not a doomsday scenario, we do have time to stop it happening if we cut greenhouse gas emissions soon.” Soaring emissions must peak and start to fall sharply within the next decade to head off a 2C rise, he said. To avoid the 4C scenario, that peak must come by the 2030s.

    I find this hard to swallow. If the worst case scenario can hit 4C by 2060 then it seem a very remote possibility that we can limit it to 2C by the the end of the century whatever we do now.

    If this is the case then we should recognize this and start planning for an outcome of 3+C. And plan we must for there is going to be chaos.

  13. Anonymous says:

    My computer is so old that the movie is completely invisible, but:
    See: “Climate Code Red” by David Spratt and Philip Sutton:

    Long term warming, counting feedbacks, is a least twice the short term warming.
    We have already warmed the planet 1.4 degrees F since 1750, short term.
    The long term effect is at least 2.8 degrees F.
    The limit set by the president is 2 degrees F. We have already exceeded it.

    560 ppm CO2 gets us 6 degrees C or 10.8 degrees F. We will hit 560 ppm before mid century. 6 degrees C is the for-sure extinction point for Homo Sapiens. Don’t make any long term plans unless you pass a MUCH MUCH stronger bill than HR 2454 RIGHT NOW!