November 18 News: Climate-Conscious Republicans Call Gingrich’s Flip on Climate Change “Disconcerting”

Other stories below: CSP Market to See Ups and Downs; Fisherman Sue ConocoPhillips Over China Oil Spill

Winslow Townson/AP Photo

Gingrich’s Shifting Statements on Climate Change

Mitt Romney may be the GOP presidential candidate that is most often criticized for flip-flopping, but as Newt Gingrich rises to challenge him at the top of the polls, the former House speaker may also be giving him a run for his money on that label of inconsistency.

When it comes to global warming, Gingrich’s position seems to have changed faster than the climate.


“I don’t know if he’s just being opportunistic or of he’s had a real change of heart, but it is a bit disconcerting,” said Jim DiPeso, the policy director for Republicans for Environmental Protection.

In the more than 30 years since Gingrich was first elected to the House, he has said there is both sufficient evidence to prove the climate is changing and also that there is no conclusive proof. He supported a cap-and-trade program to limit carbon emissions and then later testified against it before a Congressional committee.

And while in the House he co-sponsored a bill that said climate change was “resulting from human activities,” but he later said he did not know if humans were to blame.

Concentrated Solar Power Market to Experience Ups and Downs over the Coming Decade, According to Pike Research

The market for concentrated solar power (CSP) systems began a revival around 2004, at which time several key policy announcements inspired investors and engineers to start developing again. The revival gained further momentum in 2006, fueled by concerns about climate change and energy independence, with a peak in 2007-2008 as silicon-based photovoltaic (PV) modules rose to record prices during a temporary global shortage of solar-grade silicon.

While the 2008 global economic crisis did not have an immediate effect on the CSP sector due to strong momentum of projects in the pipeline, the capital crunch along with pullbacks in government incentives eventually caused growth to slow down.

A new report from Pike Research forecasts that the global CSP market will continue to experience ups and downs between now and 2020, rising dramatically from $2.1 billion in 2012 to $5.1 billion in 2013, and then experiencing a gradual decline to $2.0 billion by 2016 before resuming gradual growth again to $4.9 billion by 2020. Despite this volatility in market value, the cleantech market intelligence firm forecasts that total installed capacity of CSP will increase significantly by the end of the decade, rising from 1.7 gigawatts (GW) in 2012 to 35.0 GW by 2020.

China’s False Hope For Aussie Gas

After several false starts over nearly a decade, U.S. oil giant Chevron Corp. looks set to be frustrated again in its ambition to export Australian natural gas to China–at least for now.

Chevron has been courting state-owned China National Offshore Oil Corp., known as Cnooc, over a deal to sell liquefied natural gas, or LNG, from its US$29 billion Wheatstone project in Western Australia state, a person familiar with the matter told Deal Journal Australia.

But talks over a long-term supply contract have stalled recently, the person said, citing China’s move to shelve indefinitely plans to reform its natural gas pricing system because of inflationary concerns.

That Chevron is marketing Wheatstone gas isn’t a surprise. The company has committed roughly 60% of gas from the project’s first phase to Japanese customers, and LNG projects typically begin construction with around 80%-90% of gas volumes locked into long-term contracts.

Fishermen sue ConocoPhillips over China oil spill

A group of Chinese fishermen is suing ConocoPhillips for damages allegedly caused by a huge oil spill at an offshore field operated by the US energy giant, their lawyer said Friday.

The early-June spill leaked more than 3,000 barrels of oil and oil-based mud — a substance used as a lubricant in drilling — off China’s eastern coast, drawing widespread public criticism and warnings from Chinese authorities.

The group has filed a civil lawsuit in a court in the eastern city of Qingdao asking the Houston-based firm to pay 30 million yuan ($4.7 million) to more than 200 fishermen living there, Jia Fangyi told AFP.

“In environmental pollution lawsuits, we follow the principle of ‘inverse responsibility of providing proof’ — the victims detail the damage and the respondent must provide counter evidence,” he said.

ConocoPhillips was not immediately available for comment.

Environmental groups and local fishermen have accused the US firm and its Chinese state-run partner CNOOC of initially covering up the spill, which was discovered in June but only made public nearly a month later.

EPA Takes Action Against Toxic Arizona Copper Plant

The Environmental Protection Agency has taken tough enforcement action against a copper smelter in Arizona that has drawn complaints about toxic pollution for years.

The unpublicized “finding of violation” issued against the Asarco copper smelter in Hayden, Ariz., claims the company has been continuously emitting illegal amounts of lead, arsenic and eight other dangerous compounds for six years.

The finding also suggests that the state of Arizona, which has primary responsibility for federal Clean Air Act enforcement in the state, has failed to take meaningful action.

The EPA revealed the existence of the Nov. 10 finding to NPR and The Center for Public Integrity (CPI) as they were concluding a joint, six-month-long investigation of air pollution and regulation in Hayden as part of the Poisoned Places series.

24 Responses to November 18 News: Climate-Conscious Republicans Call Gingrich’s Flip on Climate Change “Disconcerting”

  1. Colorado Bob says:

    Link to Hansen’s paper here.

    Page 4 very clearly shows the temperature anomalies that Hansen is talking about. The graphs on page 5 show how each decade since the 1950s is gradually shifting towards more and more 3-sigma-plus events.

    Non-scientists should understand that 3 sigma deviations are very rare – they have a 0.27% likelihood ofhappening. Ten percent of the planet’s land mass experiencing 3 sigma events is hard to wrap one’s head around.

    A picture is worth a thousand words.

  2. Colorado Bob says:

    Page 7 –

    The most important change is the emergence of the new category “extremely hot summers”, warming more than 3C than climatology.
    This what Hansen’s talking about .

  3. Susan Anderson says:

    I have been spellbound by the new Jon Huntsman advertisement going the rounds, and grateful to the people putting it up. One can hope that reasonable Republicans will take a good hard look, as he is reasonable (though I have long since concluded that Republicans are set in a mold with which I cannot agree) in a way we have come to believe is not possible.

    On my statement about Republicans, once upon a time I had to vote – I thought – for Weld in Massachusetts, as the Dems had nominated mildly insane Silber. What happened then taught me a lesson for life – he got rid of all the rural ratcatchers – a great metaphor for our greedy cutters hoarding the goodies for themselves at the cost of the public and the future.

  4. prokaryotes says:

    I think it’s time for category of industry products, which are compatible with our environment.

    Volkswagen eT! Concept: Can’t Phone Home, Can Drive Itself

  5. Raul M. says:

    To be honest, I wimped back when we had 105 degrees and humidity.I thought of how the couch gained heat from my body.or didn’t cool it anyway without air-conditioning and thought-
    What about a couch or chair that was air-conditioned?
    The extent of the air-conditioning would be much less than whole house. The body would have a way of cooling some.
    At that time I couldn’t find.examples of such comforts.

  6. Mike Roddy says:

    It’s a little scary that Gingrich is one of the leaders in the Republican nomination presidential race. How in the world could anybody vote for this man? Oh, I forgot. Look at his opponents.

  7. prokaryotes says:


    UN fails in education about climate change

    the UN presentation was dubious: Research results are ignored, the report remains secret.

    By Axel Bojanowski

  8. Paul magnus says:

    And climate’s not much better. America’s lack of a federally mandated carbon scheme is half the reason why Julia Gillard’s life is so hard. And Barack Obama knows that the task is beyond him; getting America to accept health care for its own poor nearly knocked him over, so the chances of convincing them to carry the can for China’s poor? Non-existent, you’d have to think.

  9. Bill Walker says:

    They seem to be just cycling through all the candidates. When they get ahead in the polls, the media digs up the dirt on them, or they crack under the pressure, and the next most crazy one comes to the top (Bachmann, Perry, Cain, Gingrich). I don’t think Paul is going to get a turn at the top, because he’s too far out there even for the GOP. I think they may be trying to show that Romney is their only reasonable choice, but I think his flip-flopping will turn them off. And Santorum has a name problem, thanks to that internet meme.

    Given all of that, I think it’s quite possible that they finally end up with Huntsman. He might be the only one with a shot at winning the general election.

  10. Paul Magnus says:

    Xtreme weather, xtreme prices…

    fresh vegetable prices shot up 13 per cent during the year, bakery products increased 7.2 per cent and meat rose 6.1 per cent, according to the national statistics agency.

  11. prokaryotes says:

    Training in ‘Concrete Thinking’ Can Be Self-Help Treatment for Depression, Study Suggests
    ScienceDaily (Nov. 17, 2011) — New research provides the first evidence that depression can be treated by only targeting an individual’s style of thinking through repeated mental exercises in an approach called cognitive bias modification.

  12. David B. Benson says:

    One in 370 years.

  13. prokaryotes says:

    US Plans New Sanctions Against Iran’s Oil Industry

    Wasn’t a great part of said industry created by the ‘Koch Brothers?

  14. prokaryotes says:

    Reno fire expands to over 2,000 acres
    Reno fire: a fire that has forced 9,500 people from their homes and closed 90 schools has expanded from 400 acres to over 2,000 acres.

  15. prokaryotes says:

    Like early humans, Neanderthals adapted to climate and that may have been a disaster for them.

    In response to drastic cooling of the climate, Neanderthals and early humans started roaming farther from home.
    As they moved more, the two groups mingled more and their interbreeding may have led to Neanderthal extinction.
    The fate of Neanderthals may hint at the future of cultures in places that are threatened by climate change

    More likely the Neanderthals couldn’t get enough calories for their higher diet. And then i wonder, if the Neanderthal was sophisticated enough to hunt in groups, like the evolving human did. They certainly fought over scarce resources and might have been target for food during a glaciation.

  16. prokaryotes says:


    Earth’s biggest mass extinction rolled over the planet like hell on wheels.

    For the first time, paleontologists have pinned down exactly when and how fast the granddaddy of all mass extinctions took place, and their findings leave the finger of blame pointing squarely at a colossal and long-lived injection of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. Sound familiar?

    That ancient carbon dioxide came not from cars and factories, of course, but from massive volcanic eruptions, brush fires, and possibly even the combustion of coal seams ignited by hot lava.

    The greenhouse gas increase, in turn, raised global temperatures and turned the oceans acidic and oxygen-deprived, among other trying consequences. Needless to say, life did not fare well. An oft-quoted estimate suggests that 90 percent of all marine life went extinct.

    The new study, published this week in Science, puts that stark statistic into a fresh, rigorous perspective: At the peak of the crisis, right around 252.28 million years ago, and for at least 20,000 years, the planet was losing 3 percent of species every millennium.

  17. prokaryotes says:

    Michigan State University have built a prototype gasoline engine that requires no transmission, crankshaft, pistons, valves, fuel compression, cooling systems or fluids. Their so-called Wave Disk Generator could greatly improve the efficiency of gas-electric hybrid automobiles and potentially decrease auto emissions up to 90 percent when compared with conventional combustion engines.

  18. prokaryotes says:

    FOX NEWS CLIMATE DENIAL DOMINATES CABLE NEWS | A new academic paper confirms that Fox News systematically deceives its viewers about climate change, significantly altering their views. Nearly 60 percent of Fox News broadcasts were dismissive of climate change

  19. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    Santorum should just change his name to Smegma, by deed-poll-problem solved!

  20. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    The rulers of the USA must have a death-wish. Attacking Iran can only increase the oil price, and throttle any nascent ‘recovery’. But when you get direct orders from your most generous ‘contributors’, you’ve gotta jump!

  21. John McCormick says:

    Or, Spasmodic.

    Firesign Theater fans will recognize that one.

  22. Greg Junell says:

    “The new IPCC report is a stark reminder of the extent to which rising greenhouse-gas concentrations and the ensuing rise in global average temperatures are already leading to increased incidences of floods and heat waves, and that such incidences will become more frequent and severe if the global rise in greenhouse-gas emissions is left unchecked,” Ms. Figueres said.