From Greenwire (subs. req’d):
The United Nations’ top official invited President Bush today to attend the General Assembly’s debate this fall on global warming.
Calling climate change a “very important issue for all humankind,” U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon invited Bush to the daylong debate Sept. 24.
“Your participation will be very much appreciated, and I’m looking forward to welcoming you to New York,” Ki-moon said during a meeting with Bush in the Oval Office, according to a transcript released by the White House.
Bush did not say if he would accept the invitation, and a White House spokeswoman did not respond to inquiries by press time.
Dept. of No Point in it Happening (buried at the end of the article):
Bush plans to host his own forum in the late fall on global warming, though the exact date and location are still to be determined.
The NASA Goddard Institute of Space Studies data has January-June 2007 just edging out the same period in 1998 for the record. The National Climatic Data Center (NCDC) reported today that 2007 has been “the second warmest on record for January-June year-to-date period,” missing 1998 by only 0.01°C. Either way, it is hot!
Other factoids from the NCDC data:
- For the January-June period, the global surface temperature over land ranked warmest on record, beating 2002 by 0.10°C.
- Much of the West and the South suffered from extreme drought conditions brought about by months of below average precipitation. It was the second driest January-June and driest April-June on record in the Southeast. By the end of June, 65 percent of the region was in drought.
Don’t worry Denyers–I wouldn’t dare attribute this extreme weather to human-caused climate change. No, let’s just say, if we don’t take action soon, this weather won’t be extreme for very long–it’ll just be the norm.
This hearing is the main reason I haven’t had time to post more “rules” — I know, I know … you have been waiting for them as anxiously as for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.
The House Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming hearing tomorrow on voluntary carbon offsets will be webcast at globalwarming.house.gov — and I have been reliably informed that if there’s any problem with that website, the direct link to the hearing room feed is here — you don’t get that kind of information anywhere else on the Web.
And here’s a Greenwire (subs. req’d) story on the hearing:
A friend just e-mailed me that the most downloaded article from January to March 2007 for the journal Energy Policy was my article “The car and fuel of the future,” from the November 2006 issue. The article is for subscribers only, but you can read a longer version here. This is the article’s abstract:
This paper is based on a review of the technical literature on alternative fuel vehicles (AFVs) and discussions with experts in vehicle technology and energy analysis. It is derived from analysis provided to the bipartisan National Commission on Energy Policy [NCEP].
The urgent need to reverse the business-as-usual growth path in global warming pollution in the next two decades to avoid serious if not catastrophic climate change necessitates action to make our vehicles far less polluting.
In the near-term, by far the most cost-effective strategy for reducing emissions and fuel use is efficiency. The car of the near future is the hybrid gasoline–electric vehicle, because it can reduce gasoline consumption and greenhouse gas emissions 30 to 50% with no change in vehicle class and hence no loss of jobs or compromise on safety or performance. It will likely become the dominant vehicle platform by the year 2020.
Ultimately, we will need to replace gasoline with a zero-carbon fuel. All AFV pathways require technology advances and strong government action to succeed. Hydrogen is the most challenging of all alternative fuels, particularly because of the enormous effort needed to change our existing gasoline infrastructure.
The most promising AFV pathway is a hybrid that can be connected to the electric grid. These so-called plug-in hybrids or e-hybrids will likely travel three to four times as far on a kilowatt-hour of renewable electricity as fuel cell vehicles. Ideally these advanced hybrids would also be a flexible fuel vehicle capable of running on a blend of biofuels and gasoline. Such a car could travel 500 miles on 1 gal of gasoline (and 5 gal of cellulosic ethanol) and have under one-tenth the greenhouse gas emissions of current hybrids.