Climate Open Thread Plus Climate Cartoon Of The Week by Joe Romm Jun 2, 2012 8:21 am Share 15 Tweet Comment A cyber-penny for your thoughts. Liar, Liar… By Alex Hallatt From the Cartoonist Group. Tags humor Share 15 Tweet Comment 35 Responses to Open Thread Plus Climate Cartoon Of The Week Climate Hawk says: June 2, 2012 at 8:50 am While I like a good laugh as much as the next person, there’s little that’s really funny about this. I keep on coming back to the inherent criminality that characterizes the behavior of pollutocrats like the Koch Brothers and their republican hench-worms. The latter shouldn’t be elected, they should be indicted for the Crimes Against Humanity they’re committing. I remember many years ago when a state trooper brought Ford to court for homicide because they refused to spend $11 on a car part to prevent one of their offerings from exploding when hit from the rear. It didn’t stick, but I sure recall applauding the courage of that officer. I look forward to reports of things like Citizens Arrests of the Kochs and I’d definitely enjoy watching Sen Imhofe frog-marched to jail. Citizens have already put lots of pressure on war criminals like Tony Blair and Bush. I say its time we bring that to bear on these Global Warming Criminals too. Paul Magnus says: June 2, 2012 at 9:10 am Oh Canada, on oil sands we stand… An Oil Industry Witch Hunt in Canada Threatens Us All http://www.huffingtonpost.com What is next in the United States, if the oil industry succeeds in silencing Canadian voices asking for basic public health and safety protections? Like · · Share · 40 minutes ago near Richmond · Paul Magnus A day to let your mp know…. http://blackmark.leadnow.ca/ The Harper Conservatives’ omnibus budget would gut our environmental protections, hollow out our economy, and make our lives less secure. If it passes, this bill would put a black mark on our democracy. It’s time to say “enough!” Love Canada. Defend Democracy. June 2nd, Conservative MP Offices. 19 minutes ago Gail Zawacki says: June 2, 2012 at 9:34 am If anyone has time for a terrific movie, this is a painfully funny view of what Chomsky called “manufacturing consent” in the developed world – from, of all places, North Korea. It’s actually a must see, because there’s absolutely no excuse for not understanding the extent of crimes committed by the corporate empire with our taxes: http://witsendnj.blogspot.com/2012/06/democracy-is-just-slogan.html CW says: June 2, 2012 at 11:32 am Thoughts & reactions to this Yale-led study in Nature? The polarizing impact of science literacy and numeracy on perceived climate change risks Seeming public apathy over climate change is often attributed to a deficit in comprehension. The public knows too little science, it is claimed, to understand the evidence or avoid being misled. Widespread limits on technical reasoning aggravate the problem by forcing citizens to use unreliable cognitive heuristics to assess risk. We conducted a study to test this account and found no support for it. Members of the public with the highest degrees of science literacy and technical reasoning capacity were not the most concerned about climate change. Rather, they were the ones among whom cultural polarization was greatest. This result suggests that public divisions over climate change stem not from the public’s incomprehension of science but from a distinctive conflict of interest: between the personal interest individuals have in forming beliefs in line with those held by others with whom they share close ties and the collective one they all share in making use of the best available science to promote common welfare. More at the journal Nature: http://www.nature.com/nclimate/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nclimate1547.html Joan Savage says: June 2, 2012 at 2:06 pm The researchers’ measures of “science literacy” and “numerancy” do not refer to a specific literacy with climate science. I would not expect an endocrinologist or highway engineer to have reviewed climate science in forming an opinion, yet I would expect them to score high on general science literacy and numerancy. Regarding the researchers’ test of the assumption (SCT) that only persons with scientific knowledge are concerned about climate change, in my observation that assumption is/was time-sensitive. Twenty years ago data on climate change was more subtle, such as slight changes in permafrost, observed by scientists. At present, it doesn’t take scientific reasoning to observe extreme weather. This is not a comprehensive response, but thanks to your link, we have access to the full article and I would appreciate it if others to read it in full before responding. Joan Savage says: June 2, 2012 at 2:36 pm Chikungunya virus loves warm New York winters 12:34 16 May 2012 by Amy Kraft “Warmer New York winters have a sting in the tail. The mosquito that carries chikungunya, a virus that causes joint pain, but isn’t fatal, is flocking to the city in increasing numbers. The virus, which originates in Africa, is carried by the Asian tiger mosquito (Aedes albopictus) and could become endemic in New York within a few years. Until now the bitter winters have kept mosquito numbers down, says Laura Harrington at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York.” Full article: http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn21816-chikungunya-virus-loves-warm-new-york-winters.html?DCMP=OTC-rss&nsref=online-news colinc says: June 2, 2012 at 3:51 pm The whole thing is utter BS and I call shenanigans! First, 1540 respondents is by no means a “large sample” at least by any definition or measure I know. However, and much more significantly, I suggest any others look first at the “Supplemental Information” (PDF) linked at the bottom of the article. In that you will see how these “researchers” determined(?!) “scientific literacy and numeracy.” Based on those questions and the correct response rate I’d be surprised if any of those 1540 “people” can even dress themselves. Economic Democracy says: June 2, 2012 at 5:45 pm Climate Hawk: yes it is criminal…but why take a tiger to court for eating meat? That is what we are talking about…you can replace a tiger with an herbivore, or you can take the tiger to court for killing and eating meat… I do not deny personal resonsibility, it is not either-or…but institutional including LEGAL frameworks (that mandage externalization of all costs as much as possibole, that mandate short term profit maximization, etc) is the tiger we have created..there is no law of physics that states it must be that way, these are social choices…even if you “win” in court against one tiger, 100 others exist and 100 others will be born…stop giving birth to tigers…yes I am taking the Corporation and the individual CEO as if they are the same, they are not, but by taking a CEO to court you’re not that different…you still have an economic model that will make it very likely teh next CEO will do the same, or another CEO of another companyh will…or if not the CEO, then some astro-turf group will do it…it’s a losing battle.. and we don’t have that many decades plus it has 0% chance of working as noted above, just new tigers are born I’d rather take the 1% chance (I think it’s higher than 1%) of replacing the economic system with something more sane, more humane, and that does not _mandate_ murderous tigers the way our system _mandates_ putting profits over all else (yes, a super-moral CEO would still avoid things..and then they would get replaced with a less moral one..we still lose) Build the new economic system from the grassroots level from the bottom up See Alternatives To Wall Street project on our website linked to in our name David F. says: June 2, 2012 at 7:42 pm You’re correct. As an engineer, I can confirm that we received no special education in climate science. So the researchers’ premise here is likely flawed by the assumption that general science literacy should approximate climate science literacy. A better study would have compared those with a high level of climate science literacy versus those lacking such literacy. Given that the “science literate” in this particular study were actually slightly less likely to find climate change a significant risk, it’s likely they lacked such literacy in climate science. Anyone with a basic understanding of climate change would realize it poses a major risk to human health and welfare. The “science literate” in this study would probably be the type to repeat long-debunked denier myths regarding the sun and other related bunkum — which is to say they aren’t very literate at all regarding climate science. David F. says: June 2, 2012 at 7:52 pm You are right. Those questions are a joke. I guess the researchers’ ideas of scientific literacy is an elementary level understanding of basic science and stats. Tom King says: June 3, 2012 at 1:10 am By this point, we’ve all heard that watching Fox news leaves you less informed than if you didn’t watch any news at all. But I’m starting to think this is also true for all mainstream media. For instance, think of how many parts of the business world are going to be broadsided by Climate Change and then consider how unexamined it is by the business press. It would seem that the biggest mistake a business person could make would be to read a business paper or magazine. Mulga Mumblebrain says: June 3, 2012 at 5:21 am And we must never forget that anthropogenic climate destabilisation denialism, by making a climate destabilisation catastrophe almost certain, is the greatest crime by orders of magnitude in human history. I think that we must never forget and endlessly argue that these, the knowing denialist hardcore, are the greatest destroyers in human history. Mulga Mumblebrain says: June 3, 2012 at 5:25 am As was always plain to any who have studied the spiritual evil of the hard Right, the collapse of their world system of unlimited and parasitic greed, and total domination over the rest of humanity, was certain to provoke a ferocious response, and a descent into neo-fascist totalitarianism. And so it is unfolding. It’s all downhill, at accelerating speed, from here. In a few years Harper will look like a dove. Spike says: June 3, 2012 at 5:37 am If you look at this list of characteristics you can see how far down this particular road the Right have taken many of our former democracies http://www.rense.com/general37/char.htm Spike says: June 3, 2012 at 5:52 am The right wing UK government, having successfully decimated the solar industry, now turns its attentions to wind power despite the UK’s huge wind resource http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2012/jun/02/george-osborne-cuts-windfarm-subsidies catman306 says: June 3, 2012 at 8:40 am Apparently some coastal residents are catching on to what rising sea level means for them. “Stay or go? Some towns are eyeing retreat from sea LOS ANGELES — Years of ferocious storms have threatened to gnaw away the western tip of a popular beachfront park two hours drive north of Los Angeles. Instead of building a 500-foot-long wooden defense next to the pier to tame the tide, the latest thinking is to flee.” http://onlineathens.com/national-news/2012-06-02/stay-or-go-some-towns-are-eyeing-retreat-sea John Tucker says: June 3, 2012 at 2:20 pm Euro Coal-Prices dip, UK burn hits 6-year high Coal accounted for 46 percent of Britain’s power production in Q1, a six-year high share, the UK Energy Ministry said on Thursday, because coal has been far cheaper a fuel than gas for the past several months. ( http://af.reuters.com/article/southAfricaNews/idAFL5E8GVGAJ20120531?pageNumber=1&virtualBrandChannel=0 ) John Tucker says: June 3, 2012 at 2:22 pm While the far left attacks Nuclear Power relentlessly and incorrectly. John Tucker says: June 3, 2012 at 2:33 pm In cane you missed it : Gas rebranded as green energy by EU Victory for gas lobby as aims of €80bn EU innovation programme altered to channel money to ‘low-carbon’ fossil fuel Energy from gas power stations has been rebranded as a green, low-carbon source of power by a €80bn European Union programme, in a triumph of the deep-pocketed fossil fuel industry lobby over renewable forms of power. ( http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2012/may/29/gas-rebranded-green-energy-eu ) Paul Magnus says: June 3, 2012 at 3:23 pm Climate Change… animal-human incident multiplier… He cited the long-term Arizona drought as a possible reason for the attack, adding there is “not much for these bears to eat so they’re looking for a meal, and that’s what this bear was doing.” Bear Rips Open Tent, Attacks 74-Year-Old Woman http://www.huffingtonpost.com PHOENIX (AP) — A bear attacked and injured a 74-year-old Arizona woman camping east of Payson in Paul Magnus says: June 3, 2012 at 5:15 pm But is irrelevant because its too expensive and risk adverse. (Well is not irrelevant as that money and resource should be used on renewables instead.) Paul Klinkman says: June 3, 2012 at 5:48 pm Story #1 is how the United States Congress teamed up with the post-Maoist Chinese dictatorship to kill American solar and wind companies dead. China’s government created a $30 billion dollar slush fund for monopolizing the world markets. Chinese PV panel manufacturers received enormous unsecured zero percent interest loans for the job, with orders to expand production and to push prices way, way down. The Chinese manufacturers also received free land for their manufacturing plants, plenty of help in union-busting after workers or townspeople got poisoned by the plants, no pollution controls of course, and great state planning for setting up their entire supply chain. Now that all of the American PV panel companies have been crushed and bankrupted by low Chinese prices, perhaps their prices can rise again. The American government might well have let this happen because of campaign contributions. In particular, the “American” Chamber of Commerce would probably be a good vehicle with which to buy off a few running dog lackeys. So what we, the people, get are the ashes of solar companies, no jobs, and no one on Wall Street willing to take another gamble in this field. Note that the solar slaughter isn’t a complete corporate slaughter. Many of the small details in the solar panels are still made in the U.S. and shipped to China for assembly. For example, we make innovative weatherproof substrates and top layers, and innovative electrical connections. John Tucker says: June 3, 2012 at 8:20 pm That argument is not reasonable or correct. Solar and wind do not replace nuclear or coal – they displace gas. BTW solar is 10-12 percent capacity factor in Germany – Wind is like 17 percent. So at minimum if the technology existed to store energy you would need 6 to 10 times the nameplate capacity of those to replace new nuclear. Do the math. As for natural gas and coal Nuclear is FAR FAR more safe. Its time to wake up and put an end to the misinformation and fear – its not motivating more renewable installs and its certainly not helping CO2 levels. John Tucker says: June 3, 2012 at 8:25 pm Just one year of coal mining deaths worldwide (~6000 ) outstrips all the scientifically PREDICTED deaths form Chernobyl by 50 %. No reactor in the free world is as unsafe as Chernobyl was and in the most recent incident No deaths occurred from radiation and few if any are expected by experts. Period. AND THAT was 30-40 year old technology. SqueakyRat says: June 3, 2012 at 9:27 pm Just to quibble, even talking penguins probably don’t care about the Arctic. Paul Magnus says: June 3, 2012 at 11:12 pm Anyone seen Mitt Romney? WALLABY Found In Pennsylvania http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/06/02/cambridge-springs-wallaby-pennsylvania_n_1565493.html?ref=green Paul Magnus says: June 3, 2012 at 11:14 pm John, Nuclear is simply too expensive. It really is. Mulga Mumblebrain says: June 4, 2012 at 4:53 am They seem all to be rampant in the West, the Anglosphere in particular. The Masters tried ‘friendly fascism’ for a while, but then they just couldn’t control their greed and lust to dominate the serfs any longer, and, after the early 1970s, they have embarked on a neo-feudal project to drive the 99% into deeper poverty, powerlessness and internecine, class-based, strife, which the Masters’ MSM specialises in stoking and fomenting. Seeing the rabble, inside countries and between them, engaged in a ‘race to the bottom’ in wages, conditions and social welfare, really amuses the Bosses. When they finally provoke resistance, they have a surfeit of ‘anti-terrorism’ laws and the means of intrusive surveillance prepared or any eventuality. Mulga Mumblebrain says: June 4, 2012 at 5:11 am The MSM in Australia, including the so-called ‘Leftwing’ ABC (that’s a sick joke, but an article of faith on the demented Right)have dropped climate change like a hot stone. It hardly ever gets a mention, save in the Murdoch apparatus, where it is about 99% denied. That doesn’t stop the Murdochians from claiming to be ‘even-handed’, but that is simply risible arrogance, the ‘we create reality’ delusion of the hard Right. The other media groups are getting more denialistic, too, which confirms my suspicion that preventing action to avert climate destabilisation is growing in importance for the 0.01%. Mulga Mumblebrain says: June 4, 2012 at 5:15 am The ‘greenest government ever’-always a transparent Big Lie, the Right’s stock-in-trade when trying to con the suckers before an election, but one they are abrogating with the fanatic’s glee. The Right clearly want the climate catastrophe to occur, in a reckless attempt, I would surmise, to exterminate as many of the 99% as possible. Nothing else can explain their increasingly deranged actions. Tom King says: June 4, 2012 at 11:06 am Yes, a lot of penguins have been polarized into anti-arctic positions. DRT says: June 4, 2012 at 11:07 am What if SMRs (Small Modular Reactors), preferably thorium based, could be factory built and delivered by rail or truck? SMRs are supposedly more inherently safe than traditional reactors. There are numerous small modular reactor designs. I think that constructing SMRs can be less like building a cathedral and more like building a submarine or an airplane. That is, they are complex machines that could be constructed in a factory. Presumably being essentially built would bring the cost down. Tom King says: June 4, 2012 at 11:26 am Agreed. But if the entire media gets sucked into the vortex of offering non-factual information, then doesn’t this increase the value of those outlets that offer truly factual information? Why aren’t these being pushed into the foreground? I don’t have an answer to this. I ask it as an honest question. I can’t believe the level of disinformation that appearing in all media sources. Its not just climate change. The media sounded no alarm for Peak Oil either. (Even though I think Peak Oil is trumped by Climate Change, the media should still have felt the duty to warn about it.) The media offered no warning of the financial collapse, environmental toxicity, or the fact that weapons inspectors had found no WMD in Iraq. http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/6190720/ns/world_news-mideast_n_africa/t/inspector-iraq-had-no-wmd-invasion/#.T8zTEsXO98E Mulga Mumblebrain says: June 4, 2012 at 8:03 pm The corporate controlled MSM lie about everything, through sins of omission and commission. Much of it is straight propaganda service to the business and ideological interests of their owners and the Western state terror apparatus that threatens and bullies the non-Western world. Much is the expression of the ideological and pathopsychological prejudices of the hard Right zealots who infest the MSM these days, real journalists having long ago been purged. And much is simply the intellectual insufficiency and laziness and moral cowardice of overpaid apparatchiki who know that ‘Thought Crime’ is severely punished. Mulga Mumblebrain says: June 4, 2012 at 8:04 pm John, your indoctrination is showing. And you must use capitals when evoking the Orwellian ‘Free World’.