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I want to sue the republican party for willful denial of scientific evidence about climate change.


Mad Mike

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Global carbon emissions are rising under the Paris climate agreement

 

Planet-warming pollution is expected to increase 9 percent by the end of the decade under the current climate plans of nearly 200 countries, raising alarm among United Nations leaders two weeks before the start of international climate talks.

 

The grim assessment was released Tuesday in a report by the U.N. climate change secretariat that highlighted the shortcomings of global efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Scientists previously have said carbon emissions must fall 43 percent by 2030 over 2019 levels to prevent temperatures from increasing more than 1.5 degrees Celsius.

 

Instead, they’re still rising, though at a slower rate than last year.

 

“Today’s report shows that governments combined are only taking baby steps to avert the climate crisis,” the U.N.'s climate change executive secretary, Simon Stiell, said in a statement, adding that “bold strides forward” are needed at the climate talks that begin in Dubai on Nov. 30.

 

The 9 percent increase in emissions over 2010 levels is down slightly from the 11 percent rise highlighted in last year’s report. If measured against a 2019 baseline, emissions are projected to peak before 2030 and fall 2 percent by the end of this decade.

 

“Governments must not only agree that stronger climate actions will be taken but also start showing exactly how to deliver them,” Stiell said.

 

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Weather experts in Midwest say climate change reporting brings burnout and threats

 

Chris Gloninger was excited to start his new job as chief meteorologist at KCCI, a TV station in Des Moines, when he moved to Iowa from Boston in 2021. Gloninger had extensive experience — more than 15 years in TV meteorology, which included a regional Emmy-award winning weekly series on climate change.

 

He looked forward to connecting the dots between weather and climate change trends, but suspected it may elicit some grumbling from Iowan viewers.

 

"I expected pushback," he said. "I just didn't expect the magnitude and how quickly it went off the rails."

 

At first the negative feedback was fairly standard.

 

"It was stuff like, 'I don't need to hear your liberal conspiracy theories on our air. Take the politics out of your forecast,'" Gloninger recalled. "'You're politicizing the weather, you're a puppet to the left.'"

 

But one year in, Gloninger began receiving a steady flow of harassing emails.

 

In one, the sender asked for his address and said, "We conservative Iowans would like to give you an Iowan welcome you will never forget."

 

That message also referenced an incident where police arrested a man carrying a gun, a knife, and zip ties near U.S. Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh's house.

 

Gloninger's bosses arranged for security to tail him when he came to and from work and when he worked in public, including the state fair. But he said the threats ate away at his mental health and well-being.

 

"You never know what hill someone's willing to die on," Gloninger said. "I didn't know if this person thought risking his future to shut me up was worth it — and that plays in your mind."

Eventually, Iowa resident Danny Han**** pled guilty to a third-degree harassment charge and was fined $150.

 

But the threats – on top of family health issues and shifting priorities from KCCI's management – eventually became too much for Gloninger.

 

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Drought data shows “an unprecedented emergency on a planetary scale”: UN

 

Recent drought-related data based on research in the past two years and compiled by the UN point to “an unprecedented emergency on a planetary scale, where the massive impacts of human-induced droughts are only starting to unfold.”

 

According to the report, ‘Global Drought Snapshot,’ launched by the UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) at the outset of COP28 climate talks in the UAE, few if any hazard claims more lives, causes more economic loss and affects more sectors of societies than drought.

 

UNCCD is one of three Conventions originated at the 1992 Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro. The other two address climate change (UNFCCC) and biodiversity (UN CBD). 

 

Says UNCCD Executive Secretary Ibrahim Thiaw: “Unlike other disasters that attract media attention, droughts happen silently, often going unnoticed and failing to provoke an immediate public and political response. This silent devastation perpetuates a cycle of neglect, leaving affected populations to bear the burden in isolation.”

 

Drought data, selected highlights:

  • 15–20%: Population of China facing more frequent moderate-to-severe droughts within this century (Yin et al., 2022)
  • 80%: Expected increase in drought intensity in China by 2100 (Yin et al., 2022)
  • 23 million: people deemed severely food insecure across the Horn of Africa in December 2022 (WFP, 2023)
  • 5%: Area of the contiguous United States suffering severe to extreme drought (Palmer Drought Index) in May, 2023 (NOAA, 2023)
  • 78: Years since drought conditions were as severe as they were in the La Plata basin of Brazil–Argentina in 2022, reducing crop production and affecting global crop markets (WMO, 2023a)
  • 630,000 km2 (roughly the combined area of Italy and Poland): Extent of Europe impacted by drought in 2022 as it experienced its hottest summer and second warmest year on record, almost four times the average 167,000 km2 impacted between 2000 and 2022 (EEA, 2023)
  • 500: years since Europe last experienced a drought as bad as in 2022 (World Economic Forum, 2022)
  • 170 million: people expected to experience extreme drought if average global temperatures rise 3°C above pre-industrial levels, 50 million more than expected if  warming is limited to 1.5°C (IPCC, 2022)

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Making oil is more profitable than saving the planet. These numbers tell the story

 

Oil companies have long been under pressure to invest more money into renewable energy to help fight climate change. Here's one simple reason why that's not happening: Right now, oil makes a lot more money.

 

Energy companies spend a lot of money every year. Picture a giant Scrooge McDuck-style mountain of cash, to the tune of $800 billion.

 

According to the International Energy Agency, the oil industry would need to spend 50% of that on clean energy by 2030 to be on track to meet global climate targets. 
 

But right now, oil companies are spending just 2.5% of their capital, collectively, on green power. The speed of the transition to renewables — as well as who should pay for it — has been a hot topic at the ongoing COP28 climate talks in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

 

Companies point out that their expertise is in pumping oil, but there's another reason that is obvious to every energy investor. Just consider these numbers.

 

102 million barrels per day

 

That's how much oil the world uses every single day. And it's going up. 

 

Fossil fuels power the global economy, in cars, trucks, airplanes and factories. Despite urgent efforts to reduce demand and switch to cleaner power sources, demand for oil has continued to rise so far. And that keeps oil prices fairly high.

 

How long before oil demand drops? That's a matter of fierce debate. But for now, high demand means high prices — and for oil companies, high returns.

 

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After a Decade of Planning, New York City Is Raising Its Shoreline

 

On a recent morning in Asser Levy Playground, on Manhattan’s East Side, a group of retirees traded serves on a handball court adjacent to a recently completed 10-foot-high floodwall. Had a sudden storm caused the East River to start overtopping this barrier, a 79-foot-long floodgate would have begun gliding along a track, closing off the playground and keeping the handball players dry. In its small way, this 2.4-acre waterfront park is a major proof of concept for a city at the forefront of flood resilience planning — a city working toward living with, and not against, water.

 

The Asser Levy renovation, completed in 2022, is part of East Side Coastal Resiliency (ESCR), the largest urban resiliency project currently underway in the United States. Over the next three years, at a total cost of $1.8 billion, ESCR will reshape two-and-a-half miles of Lower Manhattan’s shoreline. But ESCR is just one link in a much larger, $2.7 billion initiative called the BIG U — a series of contiguous flood resilience projects that runs from Asser Levy, near 25th Street, around the southern tip of Manhattan, and up to Battery Park City, along the Hudson River. When finished, the BIG U will amount to 5.5 miles of new park space specifically designed to protect over 60,000 residents and billions of dollars in real estate against sea level rise and storm surges.

 

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https://grist.org/politics/why-people-fall-for-climate-conspiracies-fake-news/?utm_source=pocket-newtab-en-us

 

While political identity can explain some resistance to climate change, there are other reasons people dismiss the evidence, as Bloomfield outlines in her upcoming book Science v. Story: Narrative Strategies for Science Communicators. “In the climate change story, we’re the villains, or at least partially blameworthy for what’s happening to the environment, and it requires us to make a lot of sacrifices,” Bloomfield said. “That’s a hard story to adopt because of the role we’re playing within it.” Accepting climate change, to some degree, means accepting inner conflict. You always know you could do more to lower your carbon footprint, whether that’s ditching meat, refusing to fly, or wearing your old clothes until they’re threadbare and ratty.

 

By contrast, embracing climate denial allows people to identify as heroes, Bloomfield said. They don’t have to do anything differently, and might even see driving around in a gas-guzzling truck as part of God’s plan. It’s a comforting narrative, and certainly easier than wrestling with ethical dilemmas or existential dread.

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Dreaming of a white Christmas? Try Alaska. Meteorologists say Minnesota will get a wet Christmas

 

For most Americans dreaming of a white Christmas, this year’s prospects aren’t good.

 

Although parts of the Rockies and Midwest already have snow or could get a fresh dusting by Monday, other parts of the country that are normally coated in white this time of year are still sporting their drab late-fall look.

 

“Some people will get their dream, their wish, and get a white Christmas right at the last minute,” said Judah Cohen, the director of seasonal forecasting at Verisk Atmospheric and Environmental Research. “But most of the country will have a brown Christmas.”

 

If you ever dreamed of playing golf on Christmas in Minnesota, this is the year to do it, meteorologists said.

 

With unseasonal highs that could reach the low 50s on Christmas Eve and soil that has not yet frozen, it will be more of a green Christmas than a brown or white one.

 

“It will be like having Halloween for Christmas,” said Mike Griesinger of the National Weather Service. “Halloween was colder and had more snow than Christmas will this year.”

 

It will also be a wet Christmas, he said. Rain is expected beginning Saturday night and lasting through Christmas evening.

 

Temperatures will cool a bit on Christmas Day, with the mercury dropping closer to 40 degrees, which is still 15 degrees above normal, he said.

 

Among the areas more accustomed to snowy Decembers is the Northeast, where a powerful storm blew in this week and dumped heavy rain on the region’s ski areas, wreaking havoc on the snowpack.

 

“It didn’t wash out our trails. But it was crazy rain,” said Tom Day, the general manager of Gunstock Mountain Resort in Gilford, New Hampshire.

 

He hiked the ski area Monday, when it was closed, as 3.5 inches (8.8 centimeters) of warm rain fell and the wind howled.

 

"That’s a four-letter word, rain, in our business,” Day said.

 

The snow cover across the U.S. is at near-record lows for this time of year, said Cohen, who doesn’t expect much change by Christmas Day.

 

“There is a storm that is supposed to come out of the Rockies and head toward Canada, so it looks like some fresh snow in the western Plains, from Kansas to North Dakota,” he said, adding that snow could fall as far west as Denver and as far east as Minnesota.

 

The National Weather Service also doesn’t foresee a white Christmas for much of the country. But on the bright side, “At least the weather is favorable for most people who have plans to travel this year,” the service wrote in its holiday forecast.

 

So where should snow lovers turn?

 

“The best chance for a white Christmas by far is in Alaska,” the service wrote. “Anchorage’s record snow depth on Christmas Day is 30 inches (76 centimeters), which was set back in 1994, and this year’s snow depth could be close to the record.”

 

Climate change is playing a role in diminishing Christmas snow, Cohen said, although he noted it remains a complicated picture, with extreme cold snaps and unusual weather events occurring.

 

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See How 2023 Shattered Records to Become the Hottest Year

 

The numbers are in, and scientists can now confirm what month after month of extraordinary heat worldwide began signaling long ago. Last year was Earth’s warmest by far in a century and a half.

 

 

Global temperatures started blowing past records midyear and didn’t stop. First, June was the planet’s warmest June on record. Then, July was the warmest July. And so on, all the way through December.

 

Averaged across last year, temperatures worldwide were 1.48 degrees Celsius, or 2.66 Fahrenheit, higher than they were in the second half of the 19th century, the European Union climate monitor announced on Tuesday. That is warmer by a sizable margin than 2016, the previous hottest year.

 

To climate scientists, it comes as no surprise that unabated emissions of greenhouse gases caused global warming to reach new highs. What researchers are still trying to understand is whether 2023 foretells many more years in which heat records are not merely broken, but smashed. In other words, they are asking whether the numbers are a sign that the planet’s warming is accelerating.

 

When scientists combine their satellite readings with geological evidence on the climate’s more distant past, 2023 also appears to be among the warmest years in at least 100,000, said Carlo Buontempo, director of the European Union’s Copernicus Climate Change Service, at a news briefing. “There were simply no cities, no books, agriculture or domesticated animals on this planet the last time the temperature was so high,” he said.

 

Every 10th of a degree of global warming represents extra thermodynamic fuel that intensifies heat waves and storms, adds to rising seas and hastens the melting of glaciers and ice sheets.

 

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Michael Mann Wins $1 Million Verdict In Defamation Trial

 

In a victory for climate scientists, jurors in Michael Mann’s defamation case against Rand Simberg and Mark Steyn awarded Mann $1 million in punitive damages for defamatory comments made in 2012.

 

In a unanimous decision, jurors agreed that both Simberg and Steyn defamed Mann in blog posts that compared Mann to convicted sex offender Jerry Sandusky, former assistant coach of football at Penn State University. They announced that Simberg will pay $1,000 in punitive damages and Steyn will pay the larger $1 million.

 

Standing in front of the courthouse smiling with his legal team after the verdict was read, Mann told DeSmog that he trusted the jury to see through the “smoke and mirrors” that the defense used during the trial.

 

“One million dollars in punitive damages makes a statement,” he said in an exclusive interview. “This is about the defense of science against scurrilous attacks, and dishonest efforts to undermine scientists who are just trying to do our job.”

 

Mann also noted that the trial was about defamatory statements made in an effort to discredit scientists “whose findings might prove inconvenient to certain ideologically driven individuals and outlets.”

 

“It’s about the integrity of the science and making sure that bad actors aren’t allowed to make false and defamatory statements about scientists in their effort to advance an agenda,” he added.

 

Climate Science on Trial
Mann sued Simberg and Steyn for defamation, but the trial proved to be about much more than statements that harmed the scientist’s reputation — the entire field and validity of climate science was under scrutiny.

 

In closing arguments, Mann’s lawyer John Williams compared the climate deniers in this case to election deniers overall. “Why do Trumpers continue to deny that he won the election?” he asked the jury. “Because they truly believe what they say or because they want to further their agenda?” 

 

He asked the jury to consider the same question about Steyn and Simberg, the two climate deniers found guilty of defaming Mann: Did they believe what they wrote was the truth, or did they just want to push their agenda?

 

Mann has “been attacked in all the ways that a climate scientist can be attacked,” Lauren Kurtz, the executive director of the Climate Science Legal Defense Fund, told DeSmog. “He’s been remarkably public about what’s happened to him, [and] willing to fight back in ways that other scientists haven’t necessarily wanted to take on.”

 

These attacks, however, take their toll, and Mann’s lawyers expressed hope that this case could help protect other climate scientists from abuse and harassment.

 

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One Central Texas city is the nation's first to reach 100 degrees this year. Here's where.

 

Several cities in Texas had record-high temperatures on Monday. Dallas reached 94 degrees, besting their previous record for Feb. 26 of 90 degrees, set back in 1917. Abilene reached 94 degrees, too, which also broke the daily record for the city.

 

A large part of Texas topped the 90-degree threshold. That includes areas from the Rio Grande Valley, northward into West and Central Texas. The 90-degree heat extended east along the dry line into Central and North Texas, too. But only one Texas city went above and beyond the rest, reaching the triple-digit mark for the first time this year.

 

That city is Killeen, which is about 60 miles north of Austin along the Interstate 35 corridor. Fort Cavazos, formerly known as Fort Hood, which sits on the southwest side of Killeen, recorded a temperature of 100 degrees. This new record high temperature for Feb. 26 at Fort Cavazos smashed the old daily record, 89 degrees set in 1954, by a whopping 11 degrees. 

 

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And now a few days later...

 

Strong cold front could bring a chance of snow to Texas

 

Texas weather: It’s nothing if not unpredictable. It’s been a hot week or two considering we’re in the throes of winter – there’s nearly been record-setting days in Texas where cities are approaching 100 degrees in February – but a cold front sweeping the nation could bring temps to a much milder place. There may even be some snow in areas currently plagued by wildfires and hot, windy weather.

 

The Texas Panhandle is ablaze with roughly 75,000 acres on fire. But with a cold front crossing the U.S., that same region of the Lone Star State could see snow. According to the National Weather Service seven-day forecast, Dumas, Texas, in Moore County is currently under a Red Flag Warning – a fire risk – but a cold front will see temperatures drop to 24 degrees Tuesday night, February 27, and the region could see snow Thursday.

 

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On 12/20/2023 at 8:36 PM, PeterMP said:

https://grist.org/politics/why-people-fall-for-climate-conspiracies-fake-news/?utm_source=pocket-newtab-en-us

 

While political identity can explain some resistance to climate change, there are other reasons people dismiss the evidence, as Bloomfield outlines in her upcoming book Science v. Story: Narrative Strategies for Science Communicators. “In the climate change story, we’re the villains, or at least partially blameworthy for what’s happening to the environment, and it requires us to make a lot of sacrifices,” Bloomfield said. “That’s a hard story to adopt because of the role we’re playing within it.” Accepting climate change, to some degree, means accepting inner conflict. You always know you could do more to lower your carbon footprint, whether that’s ditching meat, refusing to fly, or wearing your old clothes until they’re threadbare and ratty.

 

By contrast, embracing climate denial allows people to identify as heroes, Bloomfield said. They don’t have to do anything differently, and might even see driving around in a gas-guzzling truck as part of God’s plan. It’s a comforting narrative, and certainly easier than wrestling with ethical dilemmas or existential dread.

 

I think scientists probably communicate their findings somewhat effectively.  I feel that its the media and activists that are more likely to communicate things ineffectively.  For example, the media loves a good headline and will tend to catastrophize findings.  Like if a report looked at four scenarios ranging from most mild to most severe, the media story is going to focus on the worst case scenario.  Overtime this has made the climate change stories lose creditability.  I was in college from 2001 to 2005 and I remember hearing lots of stories and believing them in college that if we didn't do such and such by 2010 this terrible thing would happen and if we didn't do this by 2015, this would happen.     A lot of bad stuff has happened over the last year 20 years, but almost none of the worse case scenarios have come in to play so these catastrophizing media reports have lost credibility.   Second and this again falls more on activists than on the scientists, the refusal of some activists to consider things like nuclear energy makes me think things are not as bad as they seem.   I get that there are some risk with nuclear energy, but nuclear energy  emits no pollution in the air (whether that be greenhouse gases or other pollutants).   Ultimately green energy is going to be the main clean source of energy but in nuclear can be a good supplement and be the main source in areas without a lot of wind or sun.  There is no doubt that green technology has not progressed as fast as we hoped 30 years ago.   I think people thought 30 years ago battery technology would improve so we could capture say surplus energy during the daylight when it sunny on solar farms and use it at night when there is no sunlight to capture--that hasn't happened, I think people thought the technology for solar panels would increase faster so we would be to capture more energy in any given unit of area than we currently are for example.  The techonology will improve but its not where we needs it to be.   So when activists are like "no nuclear" it just makes me think that they have a hidden agenda.  For example they are not only worried about global warming but they are naturalists (though solar farms and windfarms take up a lot of space so if that was their hidden agenda at best they would likely be breaking even with nuclear).  Likewise when activists immediately deny the potential of carbon capture technology that seems suspicious to me.   I do realize carbon capture technology is probably decades away from having any significant effect on climate change, but I think it is something that can still be looked into.

None of this probably really changes the opinions of vocal climate change denialists.  But there are a lot of reasonably people out there who can be persuaded.  And if the media and activists are worried about really opinionated climate change denialists they are focused on persuading the wrong people.  They cannot be persuaded no matter what evidence or dire the scenarios. But reasonably people can be persuaded. 

Edited by philibusters
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Climate change could unearth, disturb Cold War-era nuclear waste buried by the US, officials say

 

The rise in global temperatures that are causing Arctic ice to melt and sea levels to rise could disturb Cold War-era nuclear waste buried by the U.S. decades ago, according to a federal report.

 

Noxious waste buried beneath former nuclear weapons testing sites could be unearthed by 2100 should the greenhouse gas emissions that cause climate change continue at the current rate, a report published by the U.S. Government Accountability Office last month found.

 

At multiple testing sites around the world, the U.S. military detonated atmospheric nuclear weapons -- or hydrogen bombs -- and later attempted to clean up the leftover radioactive waste by putting them in containers covered with a concrete cap, Robert Hayes, an associate professor of nuclear engineering at North Carolina State University, told ABC News.

 

Rising temperatures could cause the spread of the radioactive contamination from these test sites in the coming decades, according to the Government Accountability Office report, which analyzes what is left of the nuclear debris in the Pacific Ocean, Greenland and Spain.

 

In Greenland, chemical pollutants and radioactive liquid left over from a nuclear power plant at Camp Century, a U.S. military research base, were frozen in ice sheets that could melt in the coming decades, according to the report. Denmark has instituted permanent ice sheet monitoring in the region.

 

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