Open Thread Plus Cartoon Of The Week

Opine away!


45 Responses to Open Thread Plus Cartoon Of The Week

  1. Will Fox says:

    The world’s first algae-powered building

    With 15 apartment units, the Bio Intelligent Quotient (BIQ) House demonstrates a cost-effective way of producing environmentally-friendly, sustainable architecture.

  2. Bill D. says:

    This cartoon is right on the mark. Most likely, we’ll start to do something meaningful about climate change only when we’ve exhausted all other options. Too bad that people continue to treat this as a political issue or perhaps a contest to see who can orchestrate the most effective propaganda. In reality, it’s nothing less than a matter of survival for the human species.

    The only important question now is whether we choose to have a viable future on this planet. Everything else is background noise.

  3. Paul Klinkman says:

    What we need 20 years from now (ok, 10 years from now. 5 years from now?) is a workable plan.

    What we need 2 years before that is a workable plan that we can present to Congress and to any other body with any power, saying, here are the answers. Either you implement them and get re-elected or you drag your feet and get unemployed pretty quickly.

    What we need before that is competent people we can hire, who have a good idea where they’re going to find the answers.

    Then we need a time machine to go back to, say, 2013 and round up a huge number of people that we need. Then we start to get them fully ready for the job at hand. These people will have to forgo promising careers trading bond derivatives and researching hydrogen fusion.

  4. Joan Savage says:

    In the cartoon, the audience seated at the meeting reminds me of complacent CEOs, or actually anyone who has the opportunity to escape a disaster.

    At a presentation about hydrofracking underneath the city of Calgary, someone in the audience asked if energy CEOs who live in Calgary ever feared that their own homes and water supply would be damaged. The guest speaker replied that the CEOs already had alternate homes with fresh water, just somewhere else, far away!

    Maybe not as far as Mt. Everest.

  5. Paul Klinkman says:

    Good concept. The building stores its own fuel for night, for winter, with no fuel transportation cost, with no net carbon extraction cost to the environment.

    I have designed a far more cost-efficient algae-growing building. Using your favorite search engine, go look at figures 26 and 27 of my patent #8,408,199, just published this month. It’s far easier to grow algae in tanks in the basement using concentrated sunlight. The waste heat heats the building at night, except in summer the infrared rays should be filtered out with standard low-emissivity film.

    You’re welcome.

  6. prokaryotes says: is temporarily unavailable, will be back or migrate entirely to

    In case anybody cares :)

  7. catman306 says:

    Exxon hates your children satirical ad blocked by Exxon in Arkansaw!

    See the ad at this link:

  8. Artful Dodger says:

    Reflections on Sandy

    First they mined for coal,
    and I didn’t speak out because I wanted electricity.

    Then they drilled for oil,
    and I didn’t speak out because I wanted money.

    Then they fracked for natural gas,
    and I didn’t speak out because I wanted to believe.

    Then the storm surge came for me,
    and no one in Congress cared to listen.

  9. Superman1 says:

    What we need here and now is the truth. I have no doubt the intel boys are using far more inclusive climate models, obtaining far more critical atmosphere measurements, and obtaining far more ocean bottom measurements (especially in the Arctic) than are being reported in the press. We need to know the real situation, so we can make plans based on reality.

  10. rollin says:

    We could always change, I think, maybe. If we have to.

  11. Ken Barrows says:

    That’s great. Too bad everyone is salivating over new housing starts that are 90%+ inadequate to get us away from fossil fuels.

  12. Frank Zaski says:

    Good for RE, and EE!

    All of the US energy capacity added in March was solar—all 44 megawatts

    Between January and March, the US added a total of 1,880 MW of new electricity generating capacity. Even so, renewable energy projects—wind, solar and biomass—accounted for 82% of new capacity in the first quarter of the year, and solar alone chipped in nearly 30% of the additional power. Natural gas power plants, on the other hand, added just 340MW, or 18%, of new capacity. And coal? Zip. Zero. Nada.

  13. Mimikatz says:

    I think the information available from government and other reliable sources about what is happening (land and ocean temperatures, melting ice, rising seas, shifting climate zones etc) is pretty accurate. What we aren’t seeing is a way to translate into an understandable picture that the public could grasp, and a plan of action to deal with the problems. There are separate plans, by cities, companies, a few states, but nothing coordinated. The media seems to have decided it is too much of a downer to talk about. The deniers are getting shriller but also more ridiculous and less credible.

    I’m sure there is planning by the pentagon and Homeland Security for impending disasters and conflicts that we don’t hear about, but most of the underlying information is out there if you look, and most of it is published on this site.

    Some other

  14. Mimikatz says:

    This was meant to be a reply to Superman at #3 above.

  15. rollin says:

    One good wave and it’s goodbye to all those old guys.

  16. Dennis Tomlinson says:

    “The decision about what to do, or not do, about climate change will ultimately depend on how much people believe climate models’ predictions of a markedly different world in the future that we’ll see only limited—and often ambiguous—evidence of in the present.”

    Methinks they’ve forgotten the geologic and ice core records. The Eemian was a degree or two warmer than the present, but the CO2 level was a bit less than the current level.

  17. Ed Leaver says:

    “America can generally be counted on doing the right thing — after first exhausting all other possibilities.” –Winston Churchill

  18. Raul M. says:

    The UN does have a fancy boat. It might hold many animals; but the cartoonist is probably right about the animals using the ark as it already has a good reputation of success.
    From what I have read about the UN ship, though, there is still more to do so that it controls its emissions. Good luck ladies and gents in getting it all under control.

  19. Mulga Mumblebrain says:


  20. Luc Binette says:

    How does the open tread works? I do not see how the cartoon helps in starting a new topic.

  21. Merrelyn Emery says:

    Dennis, I doubt that most people would know any details of the geologic record, or of current models. I’m afraid that in the USA you will have to rely on their pattern-making brains to attribute meaning to the increasingly destabilized weather patterns. Reality ultimately pulls trumps, ME

  22. catman306 says:

    A new way to link climate data with demographic and geographic data.

    Climate change could hit Atlanta hardest, UGA research predicts

  23. David B. Benson says:

    As we see in
    with proper accounting the USA is not doing so well after all.

  24. It means you can write about whatever you want, so long as it has something to do with climate change or related environmental, economic or political issues.

  25. 6thextinction says:

    “What we need” is a different president and congress, but we’re not going to get that soon enough.

    So what we have to do is create a movement, which historically is the only thing that worked–for slavery, for workers, for women’s voting rights, for civil rights, for feminism…. And now has one for climate.

    Therefore, let’s stop writing about what we “need”. Let’s plan what we’re going to DO. That’s what will get us out of our horrific mess–the climate movement we join. If you don’t want to chain yourself to heavy equipment, you can ask your alma mater to divest from fossil fuels. Find out online the size of its endowment: University of Michigan’s for instance is 8 Billion Dollars. Ask the Student Governing Board to vote to make that divestment demand of its college. What an impact the readers of Climate Progress alone could make!

  26. Merrelyn Emery says:

    Joan, I think they are kidding themselves. That’s the same sort of attitude they employ when they engage in any sort of risky endeavour and they often pull it off, saving themselves and their fortunes. You only have to look at the current crazy synoptic charts and the strange places in which disaster is striking to know that we are now beyond any reasonable expectation of predictability, ME

  27. Merrelyn Emery says:

    Doesn’t have to be a wave. Keep your eye on H7N9 and its soon to be incubated new little relatives, ME

  28. fj says:

    3 Ways to Unlock Climate Finance @WorldResources

  29. Raul M. says:

    By the way, if a ship isn’t to concerned with mobility action, it could probably enjoy some wave action by generation of electricity. You know boat at rest, electric generators deployed to the waves, electricity used to produce a storable form of power. Just day dreaming of
    exciting new forms of power generation. Enjoy.

  30. David B. Benson says:

    Should coal burners pay a health tax?

  31. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    The perfect bioweapon for those uppity East Asians.

  32. Merrelyn Emery says:

    Yep, the chooks are getting pretty smart these days, ME

  33. Paul Klinkman says:

    This cartoon is the first imagining of the UN taking all of those species and saving them from extinction. I say, good for the UN (one hand clapping at the end of a Laugh-In TV episode), and better late than never.

  34. Merrelyn Emery says:

    Carbon is more direct and easier to measure, ME

  35. Johnathan Richards says:

    It’s pretty obvious that no agreement with any meaning (effect) will ever occur. It’s also pretty obvious that continuing to expect this is dangerously delusional.

    And finally, any agreement that would EVER be reached would, by choice and by historical fact of how we do things, would be projected far enough into the future to allow those involved to not be held accountable the many years later this would actually be put into force.

    Therefore — we are once again, being extremely misled with this red herring as a “solution” to anything (it won’t be), it will not accomplish anything in time and we should abandon this as the tool of choice to “change our ways through legislation or politics”.

    I’m surprised how few climate scientists, climate watchers, greens and so forth “don’t get it” yet in full (just how much trouble we are already in).

    The dots are ALL there. This picture this mosaic paints is CATASTROPHE AHEAD. And very soon too — probably less then 2 or 3 years now.

    Our goose is cooked, as they say, the evidence is in the ice, the energy this has now dumped into our atmosphere, oceans and the hydrological cycle is not something we can “fix” now.

    We should be working on mitigation and adaption, as fast as humanly possible. Instead, it’s all about who’s going to pay for the carbon credits and how corporations can continue to make obscene profits.

    If this is the best we can do, I reiterate: our goose is cooked and we’re toast already.

  36. Steve Funk says:

    Gross exaggeration does not help the cause. Maximum predicted sea rise is what, about 7 meters. Mount Everest is 8,000 meters.

  37. Raul M. says:

    Ark story goes that man was bad in chopping the wood but still resolved to trust in the power of God hence nature to provide sustenance for the journey. So there was not any more chopping of the woods after the journey started,but still plenty of time to trust. That might be a good mainstay of method for preppers. Ark story also goes that Noah had many limits on what was allowable. Seems that what is allowable is a gamble and we know that gambling is a prime discomfort for those planning to weather the storms.

  38. PeterM says:

    Actually sea level in the Eeemian interglacial was 5-6 meters higher then today.

  39. Joe Romm says:

    It’s a cartoon. And we are on track for over 200 feet of sea level rise when all is said and done

  40. Chris Winter says:

    I probably missed this 2011 talk when a link to it was posted here; but IMO it is worth re-posting.

    Professor Kevin Anderson — Climate Change: Going Beyond Dangerous (2011)

    This must-hear presentation is filled with grim news — but it ends on a hopeful note. That is because of Pareto’s Rule, which holds that 80% of any single activity involves 20% of the population. Thus, one-fifth of Americans cause four-fifths of the CO2 emissions. Extend this, and you get half of all emissions coming from just 1%.

    This is very good news because those 1% can readily cut their emissions drastically without suffering drastically. They could, for example, replace their GE refrigerator with a Sun Frost model RF16, cutting yearly energy consumption for that appliance to a mere 254kWh. They might trade in their Mercedes CL600 coupe for a Tesla Model S.

    The point is, their relatively high incomes give the 1% more options to go green without pain — should they choose to accept that mission. This is why Kevin Anderson’s message is a hopeful one.

  41. Bill says:

    Why is global warming mostly tied to sea level rise as the principal danger? The big threat is loss of agriculture which has already started.

    You can run from sea rise, but where do you run when food disappears?

  42. Bill says:

    It seems any comment that questions things like methodology of this blog are quickly removed.

    Is this done in the name of professional journalism? Or science? What then?