Faithful reader have been waiting more than 6 years for reality to catch up to the name of this blog. So I am delighted to report that despite those doomsayers at the New York Times and New Scientist, the United States of America, at least, is finally making some big-time Climate Progress.
How do we know? Because one of our senior negotiators at the international climate conference in Doha, Qatar, Jonathan Pershing, said so:
“Those who don’t know what the US is doing may not be informed of the scale and extent of the effort, but it’s enormous.”
For the uninformed, here is what “enormous” climate progress — in scale and extent — looks like, according to the US Energy Information Administration:
Woo-hoo! All we need is a ten more years like 2009, and we’ll achieve the catastrophe-averting 80% reduction in carbon pollution by mid-century that Obama campaigned on.
Yes, the administration is touting emissions reductions that were due in large part to the economic collapse and subsequent slow economic growth, coupled with the low price of natural gas (which itself was partly due to the unnaturally warm weather last winter and spring, as the EIA notes).
Not that the U.S. has been a total slacker in climate policy. Obama has put in place impressive fuel economy standards and made major investments in clean energy. States have pushed renewable electricity through portfolio standards. For a detailed breakdown of all the reasons for the drop in carbon pollution, see “Shale Gas And The Overhyping Of Its CO2 Reductions.”
But the “scale and extent of the effort” is minimal, at best, compared to the scale and extent of the problem.