Delusional in Durban

Reason’s science correspondent sends a first dispatch from the U.N. Climate Change Conference.

Durban, South Africa—Delegates from 190 countries have gathered in this seaside resort town to see if they can salvage anything from nearly 20 years of climate change negotiations. The prospects are dim. A review of the amalgam of draft negotiating texts [PDF] released this past weekend at the half-way mark of this 17th Conference of the Parties (COP-17) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), suggests that few delegates are even trying to pretend that these negotiations are going anywhere. Some countries are making demands for greenhouse gas emissions cuts that are about as credible as Soviet Five-Year plans.

First, some recent history. In 2009, climate change militants anticipated that the Copenhagen COP-15 would be the triumphant culmination of 17 years of climate negotiations. The crowning achievement would be the adoption of an even more comprehensive and legally binding treaty than the Kyoto Protocol which is set to expire by 2012. The new more stringent version of the Kyoto Protocol would have set deeper targets for greenhouse gas reductions.

From the point of view of many global warming activists, there was every reason to believe that the Copenhagen conference would be a “success.” After all, the loathed George W. Bush had been replaced by the enlightened Barack Obama and the United States House of Representatives had finally passed a cap-and-trade scheme to limit U.S. greenhouse gas emissions. So sure was the world that Copenhagen would be the decisive moment in international climate diplomacy, 126 heads of government and state flew in ready to sign off on the momentous agreement. Instead, the Copenhagen conference completely collapsed. Why? Chiefly, because China refused to play.

In fact, 2009 was the year that the burgeoning Chinese economy surpassed the United States as the world’s biggest producer of greenhouse gases. Since 1992, when the UNFCCC was adopted, China’s economy has grown from just $422 billion to nearly $6 trillion today, making up about 13 percent the world’s entire GDP. When China signed onto the UNFCCC it was included as a poor developing country with no obligations with regard to cutting its emissions. Twenty years later China is no longer poor, yet its leaders still insist that it be treated as a developing country. China will not commit to cutting its greenhouse gas emissions any time soon.

President Obama recognized that it was politically impossible to get Americans to adopt limits on greenhouse gases unless China and other big developing countries also agreed to some kind of binding limits. China said no and the conference collapsed. To save face, the big countries hastily met behind the scenes to cobble together the Copenhagen Accord consisting of legally unenforceable goals to limit greenhouse gas emissions and a promise to give poor countries some climate change aid in the future. Then, embarrassed by the fiasco, the 126 world leaders all raced to their airplanes without even bothering to take the traditional “class photo” that is normally an obligatory ritual at the end of such prominent international confabs.

Chastened climate change delegates and dispirited activists convened in 2010 for COP-16 in Cancun, Mexico, to sift through the Copenhagen wreckage. The modest result of COP-16 was to get both developed and developing countries to list officially their Copenhagen climate change goals in a United Nations document. In addition, conferees agreed to set up a process for devising a bureaucratic structure for a Green Fund that would supposedly distribute climate change aid amounting to $100 billion annually by 2020 from rich countries to poor countries.

COP-16 also set out a “vision” in which countries “recognized” that deep cuts in greenhouse emissions are necessary to keep average global temperature increases to below 2.0° Celsius, the pre-industrial average. Keep in mind that the average is believed to have already increased by 0.8°C. Again, the United States refused to commit to any binding treaties unless big developing countries—China, Brazil, India—agreed to do so. And again, China refused to do so. Burned by the bad publicity of the Copenhagen flop, most world leaders had better things to do than bask on the beaches of Cancun. The Kyoto Protocol, much beloved by European Union climate negotiators, was left hanging.

A week ago, the annual climate change diplomatic cycle convened here in Durban. Global interest in COP-17 goings-on can be gauged by the fact that the media contingent is half what it was in Copenhagen and only 12 heads of state—mostly from Africa—are planning to drop by. Even the activist contingent seems dispirited. When nobody important is paying much attention and nothing significant is likely to be at stake, then, as the Durban draft negotiations documents show, even diplomats can and will say any silly thing that they’d like.

Issued by the chair of COP-17, the negotiating draft is “an intermediate product presenting work in progress, a Saturday snapshot of where we are at the end of this first week of COP 17.” Consider some of the proposed cuts in emissions that are being demanded of developed countries. One of the more moderate proposal demandswith proposed phrases in bracketsthat “developed countries as a group should reduce their greenhouse gas emissions…[by][at least][40][45][50] per cent from 1990 levels by 2020.”

To make it simple, let’s take a look at just how a 50 percent cut in U.S. emissions of carbon dioxide might be achieved. Carbon dioxide is the chief greenhouse gas released by burning fossil fuels like oil, natural gas, and coal. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the U.S. burned enough fossil fuels in 2009 to emit 5.2 billion tons [PDF] of carbon dioxide, up from 4.7 billion tons 1990. A 50 percent cut in fossil fuels below 1990 levels would mean cutting annual emissions by roughly 2.8 billion tons in nine years. One way to achieve this would be to shut down completely the 70 percent of America’s electric power generation that is fueled by coal and natural gas, plus removing from the roads nearly half of America’s 250 million vehicle fleet.

But if that proposed emissions cut is not ambitious (read: delusional) enough consider the draft proposal that demands that rich countries “undertake ambitious national economy-wide binding targets for quantified emission reduction commitments of at least 50 per cent of their domestic greenhouse gas emissions during the period 2013 to 2017 and by more than 100 per cent before 2040, compared with their 1990 levels.” Instead of trashing and trying to replace 70 percent of U.S. electric power generation and half its vehicle fleet in nine years, get Americans to sign a treaty that commits them to doing that in as little as two years.

One more proposal simply requires that rich countries commit to cutting their “greenhouse gas emissions more than 100 per cent by 2040.” One way to achieve cuts of “more than 100 percent” might be to shut down all American industry, transport, fossil fuel power generation, and cover the landscape with carbon dioxide absorbing trees.

T.S. Eliot wrote that “humankind cannot stand very much reality.” This apothegm apparently applies to some climate change negotiators here in Durban who, when reality becomes too much, retreat to fantasies conjured by their rhetoric. The likelihood of draft proposals that require deep greenhouse gas emissions cuts by rich countries being adopted here in Durban is exactly nil.

Note: This is the first daily dispatch from the U.N. Climate Change Conference in Durban. Tomorrow I will seek to gauge better the mood of the activists here in Durban. I will be reporting from the conference for the rest of the week.

Ronald Bailey is Reason's science correspondent. His book Liberation Biology: The Scientific and Moral Case for the Biotech Revolution is available from Prometheus Books.

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  • ||

    I just came. Can someone lift up the fat so I can clean myself?

  • Libertarianism is Juvenile||

    Thanks, heller, for providing yet more evidence that...

    Libertarianism is juvenile
    Grown-ups need to stop taking the ideas of libertarianism seriously
    www.salon.com/2010/05/21/liber.....singleton/

  • Libertard=Marxist of the Right||

    Their entire philosophy and worldview is predicated on a set of assumptions more common among leftists and actual Marxists than conservatives...

    And not to be a dick here, but this tendency is not merely political; it's a psychological tic as well. Sit down at a table with a bunch of strangers, whose exact boundaries for vulgarity and taste are unknown to everyone else, and if you hear someone down the table loudly expounding on, say, the various gauges and colors that anal plugs are now available in, chances are, you just discovered yourself a libertarian...

    Why I Hate Libertarians: The Continuing Saga
    Ace of Spades HQ
    http://minx.cc/?post=235285

  • Old Mexican||

    You're a bore, White Imbecile.

  • Bill||

    Two year old link, don't bother.

  • Libertarianism is Juvenile||

    True, nothing has changed in two years.

  • Barack the Jaunty Overlord||

    Not true... *I* came along, and I'm not done changing things just yet.

  • Ray||

    I'm sorry free speech frightens you, comrade.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    And how much CO2 will a tree that size emit?

  • ||

    That graphic definitely gives the impression of the Earth being crushed under a giant parasitic plant.

    So, that works.

  • o3||

    trees absorb CO2

  • ||

    lrn2respiration.

  • spencer||

    Not GAS POWERED trees!

  • annonymous commenter some guy||

    trees absorb CO2

    Then release it when they die.

  • Gray Ghost||

    Who knew the UNFCCC were such big Rainbow Mars fans?

  • Radioactive||

    Hey, they finally gave a UN conference and no one came. No one with a wit of sense anyway

  • AlmightyJB||

    Hey Ron, since the conference is a bust, why don't you spend the rest of the week photographing any hot South African women you find and posting their pics? Seems like a better use of your time and ours.

  • Tony||

    US feeds its endless greed by destroying the planet's climate for everyone (what libertarians call "freedom"). No, really.

  • Old Mexican||

    You're boring. Go back to Indonesia to satisfy your "appetite" for little kids you "saved" from work.

  • ||

    Plant more fucking trees hippie.

  • Without trees, you'd be dead||

  • Radioactive||

    but not buried...no pine boxes

  • ||

    I'm confused by your statement. Do you think I don't want more trees or that I don't want trees at all?

    If people are so worried about CO2, then the most obvious solution is more trees cause they do this magical thing where they take the CO2 out of the air and put out O2, thus enabling life.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Tony reminds me of some fucktard poster I read about a year ago, somewhere other than here, who basically said "it'll come down to two men fighting over who gets to cut down the very last tree".

    By which time, of course, most - if not all - of humanity would be dead.

    But that's liberals for ya.

  • ||

    This spoof isn't even necessary -- that crony dipshit actually believes this crap.

  • ||

    Well, Tony, you have my blessing to cease emitting CO2. I'm sure your carcass will make wonderful fertilizer for a few CO2-consuming trees.

  • jtuf||

    Twenty years later China is no longer poor, yet its leaders still insist that it be treated as a developing country. That depends on your definition of poor. China's economy has improved much, but the average Chinese worker still earns much less than the average Greenpeace employee.

  • FTFY||

    the average Chinese worker still earns takes home much less than the average Greenpeace employee

  • spencer||

    not mutually exclusive.

  • AZ||

    I think FIFY's point was the production implicit in calling a wage "earned".

  • Old Mexican||

    New at Reason: Ronald Bailey on Delusions at the Durban Climate Change Conference


    So you're not reporting anything new, tehn!

  • Realist||

    Good one.

  • adam||

    Is there any country on the face of the planet that has negative greenhouse gas emissions?

    Is negative greenhouse gas emissions even desirable, taking as true all of the climate models? Wouldn't that lead to a great global cooling?

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Adam,

    Is there any country on the face of the planet that has negative greenhouse gas emissions?


    Probably North Korea, where people have resorted to eat farts.

  • ||

    does Beano still work then?

  • Wen Szizhiz DeFon||

    North Korea, where people have resorted to eat farts

    In the US we'll soon be eating old farts.

  • Radioactive||

    mmmm, with fava beans and a nice chianti?

  • _||

    SGIP!

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Is there any country on the face of the planet that has negative greenhouse gas emissions?

    Bhutan, maybe?

  • ||

    Or as the Jack Nicholson character says in A Few Good Men, "The truth? You can't handle the truth."

  • o3||

    wasnt he convicted anyway?

  • Apatheist||

    His character wasn't on trial.

  • jtuf||

    A good article overall, Bailey.

  • Old Mexican||

    One way to achieve cuts of “more than 100 percent” might be to shut down all American industry, transport, fossil fuel power generation, and cover the landscape with carbon dioxide absorbing trees.


    UN: "And the US will lead. We get to watch."

    This is shit to laugh anybody out of a room, yet there are people (like Tony the Pederast) who take such ideas seriously. It is clear just how low the bar has been set when it comes to college "education:" The output is a bunch of Tonys.

  • Realist||

    Yes, a college education now requires an IQ of at least 50.

  • ||

    Because we should give a fuck about what the United Nations thinks we should do.

    Those internationalists, and every militant environemtalist, can piss off.

  • ||

    Is negative greenhouse gas emissions even desirable, taking as true all of the climate models? Wouldn't that lead to a great global cooling?

    There is a lot more CO2 in the atmosphere than there was 200 years ago. According to the climate models, that has raised the average global temperature significantly.

    Negative greenhouse emissions would bring the amount of CO2 down and, according to the models, bring the average temperature down too.

    Of course, at some point you'd want to stop pulling CO2 out.

  • ||

    "According to the climate models, that has raised the average global temperature significantly."

    And there is the problem in a nutshell. Any meaningful definition of "significant" might include concepts like "perceptible," or "noticeable."

    When the models and perceived reality are out of sync, some folks decide that the models are faulty, others decide that reality is just not trying hard enough...

  • Tony||

    The longer we wait the bigger the controls will have to be. You guys are bringing it on yourselves. A simple price on emissions years ago could have made this into a free market solution.

    But what do alleged free market worshipers do? Everything they can, including denying scientific fact and supporting backdoor government subsidies, to defend the fossil fuel status quo. It's always so difficult when free market platitudes conflict with the profit interests of the underwriters of free market platitudes.

  • ||

    Shorter Tony: "You make me do this, I don't want to hit you, but you make me."

    You guys are bringing it on yourselves.

    Seriously people, if you don't volunteer for an agrarian existence, it's gonna be a lot more painful when the Tonys of the world force it on you.

  • Tony||

    Continue burning fossil fuels unchecked and we'll be praying for an "agrarian existence."

    All I want is a price for fossil fuels that reflect the damage they cause and investment in clean energy. That's not the radical position. The radical position is saying we get to engage in a global experiment to alter the chemical composition of the atmosphere and nobody gets to do anything about it.

  • Zeb||

    That may or may not be a good idea. But as long as people want cheap(er) gas more than that, it isn't going to happen.

  • Tony||

    But it's only cheap because it is heavily subsidized, largely by ignoring its environmental costs.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Tony the Pederast,

    But it's only cheap because it is heavily subsidized, largely by ignoring its environmental costs.


    World: Meet the fool who still believes that scuh "costs" have not been factored in. He ignores the concept of "Opportunity Costs" and "Pareto Efficiency."

    Hey, you Pederast: People already factored in these so-called "environmental costs" when deciding to use fossil fuels. The concept is called "Opportunity Cost."

  • Tony||

    So you're claiming that everyone who uses a gas car or coal energy in their home has consciously factored in environmental effects and decided the trade-off is worth it? And that their making this decision for third parties who don't get the energy but will still suffer the consequences is part of this rational conscious decisionmaking?

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Tony the Pederast,

    So you're claiming that everyone who uses a gas car or coal energy in their home has consciously factored in environmental effects and decided the trade-off is worth it?


    Yes. Next question?

    And that their [sic] making this decision for third parties[...] [???]


    You're an idiot. Next question?

  • ||

    But it's only cheap because it is heavily subsidized

    That's funny, the gas I buy is heavily taxed.

  • ||

    Tony...many of us would be quite happy if the military stopped subsidizing big oil by spposedly protecting oil supplies around the world...it seems neither the Newts nor Pelosis of the world want to raise oil prices in that way though...they prefere to tax us for extra military and then tax us extra again for carbon...wierd.

  • sarcasmic||

    Tony, how much federal taxes the Exxon pay last year?
    How much federal taxes did GE pay last year?

    Which is more subsidized?

  • shamalamadingdong||

    T, have you looked at the outcome of all the "investment in clean energy" we have already done? It is a lot of money circling the drain.

    Nuclear energy is probably the cleanest energy that can be deployed on a large scale at the moment.

  • Tony||

    Nuclear energy wouldn't exist without massive government support.

    It is so pathetically transparent what goes on here. You guys support fossil fuel and nuclear energy, two of the most entrenched lobbies in Washington. But we can't give any special favors to green energy, even though it does have the virtue of not destroying the planet like fossil fuels or being too expensive to be feasible without massive government underwriting like nuclear.

    A huge and complex policy discussion reduced to cultural politics. There are few quicker pathways to libertarian hypocrisy than nuclear energy.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Tony the Pederast,

    Nuclear energy wouldn't exist without massive government support.


    Agreed. Nuclear energy is right now as big a racket as "renewable energy," especially because of the transfer of liability from the producers to government for exhausted fuel storage, supposedly under a guise of "national security."

    You guys support fossil fuel and nuclear energy, two of the most entrenched lobbies in Washington.


    You're boring, Pederast. You were making a good point and then you let this idiocy loose.

    But we can't give any special favors to green energy, even though it does have the virtue of not destroying the planet like fossil fuels


    It's worse than fossil fuels for the planet - the price SAYS SO, you stupid sack of dog poop. You think the price does not convey more information than mere availability, but that is only evidence of your pitifull ignorance. The price also gives signals on the ECONOMIC EFFICIENCY of the good.

  • sarcasmic||

    supposedly under a guise of "national security."

    The first nuclear reactor was the Manhattan Project, and the heat was considered a wasteful byproduct of producing material to make atomic bombs.
    When did new nuclear reactors stop being built in this country, and when were treaties signed to stop the building of new nuclear weapons?
    I believe there is more than a correlation.

  • R||

    Nuclear power probably wouldn't need nearly as much subsidizing if every nuclear energy project didn't get bogged down with dozens of frivilous lawsuits from environmental groups that should be embracing them rather than trying to stop them.

  • shamalamadingdong||

    When was the last time a nuclear power plant was built in the US? I think you have your entrenched lobbyists mixed up.

  • Joe||

    This is only true because Carter passed laws to kill nuclear power plants by making it illegal to reprocess depleted fuel. As it is we use a small amount and throw away the rest. It's like eating the banana peel and throwing away the banana. What's more, the stuff we throw away takes like a 100 times longer to degrade to safe levels, whereas if we reprocessed the fuel and threw away only what we had to, it would degrade after (I think) 300 years. There was plenty of private investment back in the day before Washington declared a jihad against nuclear energy. It is only so stupidly expensive because gov't made it that way. Of course, it is the same people that want to inflate the cost of carbon emitting fuel. The truth is, people like you don't want advancement so you artificially create 'problems' with all viable energy sources then dismiss them. The same day that everyone agrees that windmills, dams, and solar panels are the only responsible ways to harness energy is the same day eco-terrorists will declare that these things, cause cancer, thin egg shells, kill fish, and make kittens cry. They won't be happy until we are all living in caves and throwing crap at each other.

  • Tony||

    I'm OK with nuclear especially as an alternative to fossil fuels. I'm just saying libertarians supporting nuclear is absurd--it wouldn't even exist without government handouts especially limited liability. Not to mention governments invented the technology. If anything solar power is much more libertarian, as it doesn't require such heavy government subsidy, at least beyond getting it to a viable place in a market that is deeply controlled by dirty energy.

  • Radioactive||

    thank you master

  • ||

    WHAT? WHAT? Doesn't require subsidies? Viable place in the market? Do you have ANY fucking idea what kind of numbers your talking about? Can you liberals do math?

    I did some a few months ago. In order to replace fossil fuels with wind (based on generator output, efficiency/predictability of the wind blowing and standard turbine spacing) you would need a wind farm the size of North Carolina.

    To replace fossil fuels with solar, given current technology, you would need a solar array the size of North Dakota.

    Do you get it? What kind of ecological problems would ensue if we covered a land mass the size of ND in solar panels?

    It isn't feasible, nor is it likely to be any time in the foreseeable future. Crunch the numbers and pull your head out of your ass. Your "green solutions" are a pittance, you may as well piss in the ocean. IT CAN'T BE DONE!

  • DK||

    Not only that, but the technological and economic problems are ridiculous. Solar cells these days are semiconductors with some thin films deposited. Super expensive to make. Oh, and how do we intend to produce enough solar cells to cover ND? Seems to require a massive industrial base (which will, of course, need to be run with energy from fossil fuels).

  • mad libertarian guy||

    Dude.

    My solar powered walkway lights don't even work for me this time of year. What makes you think that solar is enough to power my entire home, all of the time?

    Fuck off.

  • DK||

    It definitely is. No doubt that solar power could easily generate all the world's energy - the sun gives off a fuck ton of energy. It's the economic situation that's insurmountable.

  • ||

    The Sierra Club is already filing suit against a wind farm in North Carolina....

    http://www2.journalnow.com/new.....r-1678264/

  • Bill||

    I can't tell if you are a spoof or not. Either way, it's still not honest.

    Most people here do not want subsidies for anything and do not want the complicated tax code we have now.

    It is the politicians of both parties that continue to push policies we do NOT agree with. How in the hell does that translate into we wanted these policies and support them when we clearly and consistently say we OPPOSE them.

    With nuclear, it is subsidized but also heavily regulated and politicized. It could possibly be profitable in some future scenario where the gov't interfered as little as possible and allowed fuel reprocessing, etc. Our current nuclear fuel could be re-used 33 times without having to mine any additional fuel. Ask Greg Choppin.

  • Tony||

    Nuclear is heavily regulated for one simple reason: anything goes wrong and there is a risk of a massive disaster. No nuclear plant would be built in a "free" market because no cost-effective private insurance would exist for it.

  • Joe||

    It's not the regulation making it safe that is the problem it is the regulation that makes it inefficient that is the problem. In other words, the banning of fast reactors. I have worked in procurement of materials to fabricate nuclear facilities. The costs are high, and rightly so, but capital costs can always be mitigated by the efficiency of the plant. By only using a small percentage of the fuel you make it infeasible.

  • Radioactive||

    yeah just look at the list of dead from TMI...

  • ||

    Exxon, Shell and BP are all for some sort of carbon tax scheme...you are on their side Tony.

  • Tony||

    They also admit global warming is real.

  • Juice||

    Did Exxon pay you to say that?

  • sarcasmic||

    Nuclear energy requires government subsidies that are, per kilowatt hour, almost as high as "green" energy.
    Fossil fuels use the least government money per kilowatt hour of energy produced.

  • Tony||

    If I were to make a product and then were allowed to dump all the waste on your land for free, would you consider that the free market at work?

  • sarcasmic||

    I do not consider CO2 to be "waste".

  • sarcasmic||

    That's not entirely true. If the CO2 comes as a result of you breathing, then it is indeed waste.
    If it comes as a result of burning fossil fuels, then no I do not consider it to be waste.

  • Tony||

    What is it, plant food? By your reasoning, cheetos are human food, thus there is no such thing as eating too many cheetos.

  • sarcasmic||

    It is an inert trace gas.
    What would you know about reasoning? Seriously.
    What you present as "logic" is little more than a string of fallacies.

  • Tony||

    If only the worldwide scientific community could wrap its mind around sarcasmic's stunning deployment of semantics.

    CO2 is a greenhouse gas. OK in certain quantities, increase the quantity, increase the heat being trapped. It's basic physics.

  • sarcasmic||

    FYI Tony, consensus is a tool of politics, not science.

    A little less than a century ago politicians, following scientific consensus of the time, would have had you locked in a mental institution and had you sterilized because you like to suck dick.

    The worldwide scientific community agreed.

    Come to think of it, maybe scientific consensus isn't such a bad idea after all.

  • Tony||

    By your reasoning, nothing is known or knowable, ever. Including basic physics such as that which informs the greenhouse effect. The only things that are certain are what you happen to believe because you read it on a right-wing blog.

    Energy policy is a disaster for libertarians because their constant inability to conform their policy beliefs to scientific fact suggests that they simply don't have an answer.

  • sarcasmic||

    "Let's have a vote" is not part of the scientific method.

    It is a part of the political method, but it has no place in actual science.

    "Science" that is derived by consensus is not science. It is politics.

    What you call "science" is not science, it is politics.

    See?

    It ain't science. It may be loosely based upon science, but consensus is not science.

  • Tony||

    I didn't say anything about consensus. I was referring to physics any schoolchild learns. But glad to see you've mastered the talking points.

    Let me see if I understand: if 99% of scientists say something, the 1% are more likely to be right, because... you like what they have to say more?

  • sarcasmic||

    Let me see if I understand: if 99% of scientists say something, the 1% are more likely to be right, because... you like what they have to say more?

    I don't know where you get 99% from. Unless you mean 99% of the scientists who are being paid to prove human activity is causing the climate to change, which would make sense since that's what they're paid to do.

    AGW is based upon consensus, not the scientific method, therefor it is not science.

  • ||

    Tony, you're as fool. There is nothing "basic" about gthe physics of the atmosphere, a comp0lex dynamic system with an unknown number of variables and boundary conditions.

    Even the Warmmongers admit that CO2 alone can't produce their doomsday scenario=-for that they have to posit positive water-vapor feedback many times greater than carbon compounds' direct influence.... not one shrerd of evidence for which has ever been fouynd.

    Moreover, their assumptions aboyut the effect of cloud albedo are entirely bnackwards, being based in the same optical back-scatter equations that Carl Sagan made a fool of himself with.

    Besides, if AGW were a function of "basic physics," then why do its proponents have to constantly lie and cheat? Michael Mann and James Hansen have credibility down around Bernie Madoff's.

  • ||

    Two times nothing is still nothing. The amount CO2 in the atmosphere is two orders of magnitude less than the most efficient greenhouse gas, water vapor. Knowledgeable AGWers (if there is such a thing) will readily admit that CO2 will not cause the impending doom (sarc), but the increase in CO2 will cause feedback loops which will increase the temperature.

    Your "basic physics" argument is sophomoric.

  • ||

    This positive feedback theory seems to be what holds up the simulations of the AGW crowd. When the CERN experiment showed that cosmic rays make clouds from saturated water vapor, it blew a big hole in the simulations. Clouds reflect solar energy and keep us cooler.

    If ( as now seems to be the case ) the key factors are beyond human control so there is no point in trying the reduce CO2.

  • ||

    Tony: "CO2 is a greenhouse gas. OK in certain quantities, increase the quantity, increase the heat being trapped. It's basic physics."

    I completely agree with you up to this point (and so do all the scientists).

    The area of disagreement has little to do with the CO2 itself, and instead relates to the various feedback effects that serve to either amplify or diminish the warming from the original increase in CO2.

    Ask any scientist you like how much warming a doubling of CO2 will cause excluding feedbacks... the answer will be around 1.2 degrees C.

    The debate surrounds the magnitude and direction of feedbacks (especially relating to clouds).

    Fact remains... nobody knows whether the sum total of all feedback mechanisms is positive, negative or neutral.

    So, back to your point... yes more CO2 = more heat energy being absorbed in the atmosphere = more warming. However, the quantity of warming is the issue, and even the best minds on the subject haven't managed to model it out.

    In a climate scientist's own words: "The fact is that we can’t account for the lack of warming at the moment and it is a travesty that we can’t.”

  • mad libertarian guy||

    So basic that the AGW models are ALREADY all fucked up with their ability to predict dick.

    Like the LACK of current warming.

  • protefeed||

    CO2 is plant food, or more precisely, a necessary ingredient for plants to create food.

    Cheetos are human "food". The company that makes Cheetos obviously thinks there is an optimal supply of Cheetos to manufacture, and to not make more than that, since otherwise the excess will go uneaten.

  • Tony||

    So what happens to the excess CO2 with no manager around to regulate its output?

  • sarcasmic||

    So what happens to the excess CO2 with no manager around to regulate its output?

    How do you know plants won't do the job?
    Aren't there fossils of HUGE plants back when dinosaurs roamed the earth in their SUVs, putting all that CO2 into the atmosphere?

  • Sevo||

    Tony|12.5.11 @ 12:02PM|#
    "If I were to make a product and then were allowed to dump all the waste on your land for free, would you consider that the free market at work?"

    Do you fart, shithead? In that case, pay up.

  • ||

    That being the case, which it isn't obviously, why are the feed in tariffs so much higher for wind and solar?

  • ||

    Nuclear energy requires government subsidies that are, per kilowatt hour, almost as high as "green" energy.

    Only if you think a buck and a half is "almost as high" as roughly $25 for wind and solar.

  • sarcasmic||

    All I want is a price for fossil fuels that reflect the damage they cause and investment in clean energy to eliminate any vestiges of a free market and replace it with a command and control economy where wise people choose what the rubes are allowed to buy and how much they will pay for it because I believe that most people are too stoopid to make any decisions for themselves.

    IOW Tony is a Communist.

  • free2booze||

    All I want is a price for fossil fuels that reflect the damage they cause

    The benefits of fossil fuels, outweigh the costs. Fossil fuels are directly responsible for the increase in wealth, and standard of living through out the world. The next time you pass a bucket of coal, or a quart of oil, you should pucker up and give it a giant kiss, and thank it for the standard of living you enjoy.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: free2booze,

    The benefits of fossil fuels, outweigh the costs.


    Tony the Pederast does not realize that when people decide for one option, they automatically weigh other alternatives. He simply indulges in this second-guessing, back-seat driving game the economic centrallists call "externalities."

  • Tony||

    You're explaining away a central flaw in your thinking by merely assuming the flaw doesn't exist, no other explanation given.

    I am fully aware of the environmental costs of my energy use, but I have no option but to use the type of electricity generation available to me. And you can't argue against the phenomenon of externalities just by claiming they don't exist. It's a very simple concept, apparently unfathomable to you ONLY because it conflicts with your dogmatic preconceptions. Some transactions present costs to non-involved parties.

  • sarcasmic||

    but I have no option but to use the type of electricity generation available to me.

    Then you must stick true to your principles and stop using electricity and fossil fuels.
    While you're at it you must not use any products that come as a result of humanity's exploitation of cheap energy.

    Happy gamboling!

  • Tony||

    I see it this way: I'm informed on the subject but can't feasibly stop contributing to the problem, and don't want to sacrifice my lifestyle while other less educated people go on enjoying a good lifestyle while the problem goes on unabated. This is exactly why big centralized action is the only option. Expecting token gestures by environmentalists to do anything is fantasy. Me not being a hypocrite doesn't remove an ounce of greenhouse gas from the atmosphere.

  • sarcasmic||

    Me not being a hypocrite doesn't remove an ounce of greenhouse gas from the atmosphere.

    No, but it would stop the addition of many tons of greenhouse gasses.

    Stop being a hypocrite Tony. Set an example.

    Oh wait. You're a liberal. I guess then by definition you are a hypocrite who will not set an example until you get the government to force everyone to do what you would like everyone to do but won't do yourself unless everyone else is forced.

  • Tony||

    I believe in social policy, that doesn't make me a hypocrite. And you don't get moral bonus points for being ignorant.

  • sarcasmic||

    I believe in social policy, that doesn't make me a hypocrite.

    I didn't say that.

    Your hypocritically criticizing people for using energy and products derived from putting greenhouse gasses into the atmosphere and demanding that the government use force to stop it, while yourself doing those very things you want to criminalize, makes you a hypocrite.

    Set an example Tony.

  • Tony||

    I'm specifically not criticizing consumers for using fossil fuel energy. They don't have a choice because energy policy has favored fossil fuels. I'm criticizing people who employ all manner of embarrassing antics--up to and including denying inconvenient scientific facts like a common creationist--all to defend the profits of the industrial status quo, which for all its blather about free markets is what libertarianism amounts to.

  • sarcasmic||

    Consensus is not science.
    It is politics.
    What I dismiss is not science.
    What I dismiss is politics that is loosely based upon science.

  • Tony||

    This issue is heavily politicized... by climate change deniers. Those who believe in what science is telling us are merely responding to the science.

    You'd have us believe that the worldwide scientific community is engaged in a political conspiracy, but deniers are just innocent bystanders trying to get the truth out (the truth that Oil must be the most profitable industry in the world for the next 5 years or so).

  • sarcasmic||

    Those who believe in what science is telling us are merely responding to the science.

    Except that since they're not using the scientific method what they're doing is not science.

  • ||

    You are insane. You're right. YOU DON'T have a choice. BECAUSE THERE IS NO ALTERNATIVE, with the possible exception of nuclear, which you and your ilk have effectively stymied. WHAT IS YOUR ALTERNATIVE? Solar panels covering the entire state of North Dakota? A wind farm the size of SC?

    The technology isn't even close, nor will it be in your lifetime. Eliminating fossil fuels without a replacement means you advocate living in caves. Can you not follow simple logic?

  • ||

    That was for Tony (if there was any question).

  • Tony||

    If that were true (it's not, though it's highly amusing when Ayn Rand worshipers suddenly become pessimistic about human ingenuity), then you're advocating exactly the same thing: living in caves with no alternative. Ignoring science won't make it go away.

  • ||

    DUDE

    Not true? DO THE FUCKING MATH!

    Go do it yourself. You do know how to do math don't you? Go figure out how big the wind farm would need to be to eliminate fossil fuels. How many acres of solar panels? Get back to me when you have the answer.

    I've done the math. See my comment above. If I'm wrong, prove me wrong. Until then...SHUT THE FUCK UP!

    Rand preached A is A. A isn't B just because you'd like it to be so.

  • DK||

    It's not possible using current solar technology. The expensive nature of current Group XIV semiconductors makes it that way. I'm not convinced that it couldn't be done with some type of organic thin film semiconductor, which are currently being developed.

  • free2booze||

    I'm not convinced that it couldn't be done with some type of organic thin film semiconductor, which are currently being developed.

    Even if a solar panel with 100% efficiency were produced, solar still wouldn't be able to replace fossil fuels. Under perfect conditions, the sun delivers 1000 watts per square meter.

  • DK||

    Ok. Let's take your ideal conditions. 1kW/m^2. Say I have a square house of ~1000sq ft...that's about 100m^2. So that's 100kW. Collection period of 8h is 800kW*h generated per day at 100% efficiency. The average U.S. household uses 15kW*h per day. So we have 53 times more energy than we need in a given day by replacing our standard size roof with 100% efficient solar panels.

    Obviously not realistic. Let's say we only get 1/10 the amount of light and our solar panels are 10% efficient. Now we're getting 53% of our daily energy from the sun. Not too shabby. These types of numbers are already within reach of most Si/Ge based solar cells. The problem is the expense of making them. With cheap organic thin films, much of the energy crisis is solved.

    Sure. We may still have some dependence on fossil fuels. Though energy usage can be radically decreased through the use of alternate building materials, architectural designs, and conservation efforts. And why do fossil fuels need to be the fuel of choice? They may be easiest for transportation, but they're not necessary for other power distribution.

    This solution also does away with all the monopolistic problems associated with centralized power generation. I would think that a true libertarian would be all for such movements.

  • MJ||

    "They don't have a choice because energy policy has favored fossil fuels."

    It is not that they do not have a choice. It is that fossil fuels provide the most energy per unit or are the most portable and reliable source of energy for the application. Blaming sinister conspiracies when society makes choices you do not like is merely rejecting technological reality for a fantasy.

  • DK||

    Tony has a point. Government has consistently favored fossil fuels (in the forms of subsidies, wars, etc) over technologies like solar for decades. Technological reality is an ever-shifting thing. What's technologically realistic today may not be so tomorrow. With solar, there are plenty of exciting possibilities which could be game changers.

  • Sevo||

    Tony|12.5.11 @ 12:29PM|#
    "I see it this way: I'm a fucking self-righteous hypocrite"

    FIFY, shithead.

  • ||

    I'm informed on the subject but can't feasibly stop contributing to the problem, and don't want to sacrifice my lifestyle while other less educated people go on enjoying a good lifestyle
    ----------------------------
    I have yet to meet an environmentally alarmed person who is willing to do the things they strongly want to force the rest of us to do.

    This attitude is a pretty dramatic admission that the changes they want to make in the way we live are draconian, and totally unacceptable.

  • protefeed||

    I am fully aware of the environmental costs of my energy use, but I have no option but to use the type of electricity generation available to me.

    No one is forcing you to use electricity supplied by a centralized fossil fuel burning plant. You can move somewhere and go off the grid if you want it bad enough. You can pay exorbitant prices for solar electric panels and go off the grid.

    The fact that you choose to continue to use the much cheaper form of electricity is what is known in economic circles as your "revealed preference". That is, you state you want to have these delusionally low levels of fossil fuels useage, but the fact that you're able to post here using a electricity-consuming computer is pretty strong proof that you've chosen otherwise having weighed the alternatives.

  • Tony||

    Even if I did make the effort to live a carbon-neutral life, it wouldn't make a bit of difference to the overall problem. That problem can't be solved by individuals acting responsibly, but only by large collections of people doing so via national and global policy changes. I'm sorry you don't like that, but the universe doesn't owe you anything, least of all assurance that your rigid political beliefs will cover every circumstance.

  • Neu Mejican||

    Actually, Tony...

    The only solution is for individuals to pay attention to their own carbon footprint and do what they can to reduce it. Things like a carbon tax can help to give them signals of how best to approach the problem, but the voluntary reduction and changes in lifestyle will come about due to better information on the ease and low cost of reducing your home's or your business's carbon foot print. Regulations will always be most useful around the edges. They will not get to the core of the issue. Think prohibition. Reductions in alcohol's harm did not happen when alcohol was banned. Reduction in harm came with better education about those harms and simple solutions to avoid them. You don't reduce drunk driving rates PRIMARILY by outlawing drunk driving. You reduce rates by showing people how dangerous it is and how easy it is to avoid. Same principle works here.

  • Tony||

    I don't think the negative effects of climate change are individualized enough to incentivize individual behavior on a meaningful scale, especially not in order to mitigate free riding (DD doesn't have that problem--and there are few people who deny drunk driving is bad as a way to get out of responsibility for it).

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Tony the Pederast,

    That problem can't be solved by individuals acting responsibly, but only by large collections of people doing so via national and global policy changes.


    Yes, because people act differently when working collectively than when acting as individuals. That is correct

    Think: The Huns.

    You're a naive idiot, sockpuppet - the worst kind of idiot.

  • MJ||

    "That problem can't be solved by individuals acting responsibly, but only by large collections of people doing so via national and global policy changes."

    Amazing that the person advocating heavy handed authoritarian global ebergy policies accuses his opponents of having rigid political beliefs

  • ||

    Even if I did make the effort to live a carbon-neutral life, it wouldn't make a bit of difference to the overall problem. That problem can't be solved by individuals acting responsibly, but only by large collections of people doing so via national and global policy changes. I'm sorry you don't like that, but the universe doesn't owe you anything, least of all assurance that your rigid political beliefs will cover every circumstance.

    --------------------------------
    Everybody read this, at least three times. He's giving away a lot here.

  • ||

    Dear Sir in your last post you are not being entirely truth full you do understand what going off the grid mean's do you not

  • ||

    LOL sorry last post was to Tony

  • mad libertarian guy||

    You mean you can't buy your own solar array and use it for your own personal use?

    Liar.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Who here is surprised over the vehement anti-individualism upthread?

    Hmm... no hands. Good.

  • ||

    All I want is a price for fossil fuels that reflect the damage they cause

    And how do you calculate that?

    I suppose you will want these costs to be imposed via taxation. No risk those funds will be redirected to politicians' pet projects, is there?

    Have you given any thought what your big carbon taxes will do to the poor and working classes you profess to care about? Not everybody is as rich as Al Gore.

    Then there's the city, county, state, and federal budgets. The government goes through a LOT of fuel.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Enjoy Every Sandwich,

    And how do you calculate that?


    E, Tony is an economics ignoramus. He despises the price system except when it can be used to "prove" externalities.

  • Tony||

    I don't care how poor you are, you don't have a right to trash up your neighbor's yard and not pay for it. If clean energy is too expensive for poor people to be able to have a modern lifestyle, then we can tax the excess wealth of the rich to subsidize it. You're advocating an unfree market of rampant freeloading to protect us from "pet projects." I've never seen a utopian ideology make so many excuses for the status quo.

  • Sevo||

    Tony|12.5.11 @ 3:11PM|#
    "I don't care how poor you are, you don't have a right to trash up your neighbor's yard and not pay for it..."

    Shithead, how long are you going to beat that strawman?

  • mad libertarian guy||

    Until, as a grand finale, he douses it in gas and chucks in a match.

  • ||

    Why don't you answer my question?

    If you care to. It may be that OM is right about you: you don't really care about how your vision will actually be implemented. In that case, you should get a dictionary and look up "utopian" because you plainly don't know what the word means.

  • ||

    Oh, and by the way: that "excess wealth of the rich"? You already spent it.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    "I've never seen a utopian ideology make so many excuses for the status quo."

    It is to laugh, reading the above, having been typed by a liberal.

  • Tony||

    We make a lot of excuses, I'll grant you that, but we are not utopian.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Hah.

    Unobtainable egalitarian New World = not utopian.

    Hah.

    The ONLY way you can have the world you seek, Tony, is to tear up the Bill of Rights and impose equality on everyone.

    You willing to take that step?

  • Mr. FIFY||

    That "price" you want, Tony, would be a regressive tax on the poor people, of whom you claim to give a shit.

    You want five-dollar gasoline? Move some place where that's the lowest rate. Knock yourself out.

  • Tony||

    God now you're an advocate for government handouts to the poor... the rhetorical knots you'll tie yourself in to defend oil industry profits.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    No, I'm not in favor of that. How the fuck you got that out of the post...

    What profits *would* you allow, were you King?

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Tony the Pederast,

    The longer we wait the bigger the controls will have to be.


    Assuming they are needed. You ass...ume too much, you ass.

    A simple price on emissions years ago could have made this into a free market solution.


    Price floors are a not a free market solution, you ignorant fool.

    Leave the economics talk to us, the adults. Go play with the little kids in Indonesia, those that you "saved" from work.

  • Tony||

    Nothing in this debate suggests that the "free market" has found a way to handle environmental harm--one of the biggest criticisms of free market economics. By denying scientific fact in order to hang onto your free market religion you're admitting as much.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Tony The fucking liar.

    Nothing in this debate suggests that the "free market" has found a way to handle environmental harm[...]


    This is an obvious lie.

    one of the biggest criticisms of free market economics.


    That does not mean the criticism is sound.

    By denying scientific fact [...]


    You're begging the question.

  • sarcasmic||

    Experts OM!
    Are you an expert? No?
    Then how dare you question the experts?
    They're experts!

  • So...||

    ...is Tony an expert?

  • free2booze||

    By denying scientific fact

    What "fact"? The computer models have proven nothing, and only suggest a possible outcome. They have never been tested, so any predictions about the future are only speculation.

  • sarcasmic||

    But they're experts!
    Experts I tell you!
    Experts!

  • ||

    We have TOP MEN on it!

  • Top. Men.||

  • ||

    Computer models = garbage in = garbage out

  • spencer||

    Tony, everytime you don't buy BP the freemarket finds a way to handle environmental harm.

  • Bill||

    We have not (and may never have) a free market in energy and in environmental pollution.

    So something that does not exist had not found a way to handle something. Big surprise.

  • Tony||

    True, but it doesn't exist because it can't exist. The concept is a fantasy. Libertarians would have us believe (when convenient) that the status quo is the freest possible market, and any deviation is an addition of socialism. So we can't even attempt to correct for the distortions in the market status quo, not even to make the market freer. Libertarian utopianism becomes deeply pessimistic when convenient.

    One thing remains constant: not a dime of profits from the oil industry must be sacrificed. Funny that.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Tony the Pederast,

    The concept is a fantasy. Libertarians would have us believe (when convenient) that the status quo is the freest possible market[...]


    The statement tells me you don't know what "status quo" means.

    [...]and any deviation is an addition of socialism.


    You also have a problem with sentences. an "addition to socialism"???

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Good catch, OM. The real Tony would be proud of addiction to socialism.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Oops... "is", not "would be".

  • spencer||

    I missed something, why is Tony a pederast? He's wrong about 98% of the time on everything, but when did he admist to "loving" boys?

  • Tony||

    I believe he's referring to a time when I mocked libertarian logic on child labor. The argument was that if children weren't allowed to work in sweatshops, they'd be forced into prostitution. Which I thought was about as sound an argument as saying if children weren't allowed to be prostitutes, they'd be forced to work in sweatshops.

  • spencer||

    It's not that the argument is a zero sum game- labor or sex work- bu that the fact is kids working in sweatshops are not being deprived of what would otherwise be better, happier childhoods. They would not be going to school and playing with friends.

    That being said, that is pretty hyperbolic of OM.

  • Pudgeboy||

    OM is the man. If he wants to be 'hyperbolic,' so be it.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Tony the Pederast,

    I believe he's referring to a time when I mocked libertarian logic on child labor.


    You were mocking a clumsy strawman, as clumsy as you.

    The argument was that if children weren't allowed to work in sweatshops, they'd be forced into prostitution.


    That's not the argument; the argument against child labor laws is that it impedes children from learning work skills and to increase the wealth of the family. The reality is that kids that are impeded to work in any job because of child labor laws end up, in some very poor countries, as prostitutes or sold into sex slavery. That's what is happening, it's not something made up.

    Since your objection is laughable, I can at least think that your motive lies somewhere else, hence Tony the Pederast. It makes sense.

  • Tony||

    You're a vulgar moron and I find it a bit much even for you to go around accusing someone of being a pedophile, which I would dearly love for you to do to my face.

    As far as the topic, I'm about sick of libertarians and their "sweatshop labor is good enough for those children, but give me maximum freedom and lowest possible taxes" bullshit.

  • Sevo||

    Tony|12.5.11 @ 3:14PM|#
    "As far as the topic, I'm about sick of libertarians and their "sweatshop labor is good enough for those children, but give me maximum freedom and lowest possible taxes" bullshit."

    Shithead, I'm tired of your sleazy, dishonest posts.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    See, Tony, what you said - about being labeled a pederast - should, in theory, teach you to not call people bigots or racists when no such label applies.

    But, since you won't, I really don't feel all that sorry for you.

  • Tony||

    Everyone's a little bit racist. Some more than a little.

    Guess on which end of the spectrum uniformly white conservative males fall.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    If you knew how much I despise racists, or how many dollars I've spent replacing tires slashed by angry white supremacists, you'd eat those fucking words.

  • Malcolm X||

    I was pretty fuckin' racist when I was alive...

  • Louis Farrakhan||

    I'm pretty fuckin' racist, and I'm STILL alive...

  • Any New Black Panther||

    What Louis said.

  • So...||

    ...every white male conservative is more racist than anyone else?

    Numbers, please. AND your mind-reading data.

  • Restoras||

    I think it's Thursday in an alternative universe.

  • Ren 'n' Stimpy||

  • ||

    A simple price on emissions years ago could have made this into a free market solution.

    Oh, how I wish that were true. Determining the price is anything but simple. Should it be twice what it is now? 3X? If we really are in substantial danger of frying ourselves, it should be ten or twenty times. If the price change is small, it won't have much effect. But if it is large ...

    Who is going to pay those prices? If just people in rich countries, there are going to be major smuggling issues and political issues. Try telling the guy paying $30 a gallon for gas why someone in China should pay $3.

    But if it applies to everyone, it is a guarantee that the poor of the earth will always be that way. A high standard of living requires an awful lot of energy--and if it's not cheap, poor people won't have it.

    It would be wonderful if there were cheap, non CO2-generating ways of getting useful energy to people. But there simply are not. Not any that can be used on a large scale. Hopefully, there will be someday but there simply isn't now.

  • mad libertarian guy||

    Nuclear.

  • kinnath||

    There was an article over the weekend that said that the CO2 in the atmosphere was much higher with the ice cap in Antartica was formed than it is now (based upon recent drilling and core samples).

    And of course the final conclusion from the scientist was that we need to make sure that we don't raise CO2 levels even close to what they were when the ice cap formed to make sure we don't melt the ice cap.

    *facepalm*

  • ||

    Citation? I'd like to read it.

  • kinnath||

    Searching Google News does not bring up the article -- really weird.

    But there are some related articles such as this one:

    http://tucsoncitizen.com/wryhe.....ezes-over/

    Just in time for the Durban climate conference we have a bit of science fiction from Yale and Purdue universities. The paper is Pagani et al., 2011, The Role of Carbon Dioxide During the Onset of Antarctic Glaciation, Science, Vol. 334 no. 6060 pp. 1261-1264. (Link to abstract)

    The research team claims “A drop in carbon dioxide appears to be the driving force that led to the Antarctic ice sheet’s formation.” According to the press release:

    The onset of Antarctic ice is the mother of all climate tipping points. The team found the tipping point in atmospheric carbon dioxide levels for cooling that initiates ice sheet formation is about 600 parts per million. Prior to the levels dropping this low, it was too warm for the ice sheet to form. At the Earth’s current level of around 390 parts per million, the environment is such that an ice sheet remains, but carbon dioxide levels and temperatures are increasing.

    The team studied geochemical remnants of ancient algae from seabed cores collected by drilling in deep-ocean sediments and crusts as part of the National Science Foundation’s Integrated Ocean Drilling program. The biochemical molecules present in algae vary depending on the temperature, nutrients and amount of dissolved carbon dioxide present in the ocean water. These molecules are well preserved even after many millions of years and can be used to reconstruct the key environmental variables at the time, including carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere.

    I'm going to guess that the article that I saw was a really bad summary of the referenced paper that was published to coincide with the climate conference.

  • American Patriot||

    You can get the article at Anthony Watts site

  • Xmas||

    You know, if you want to convince someone that Global Warming is actually happening...Durban in December is the right place to be. I think it just about 100 deg F with 99% humidity when I was there in December a few years ago.

    Hope Ronald gets to enjoy a nice braai and some pinotage.

  • ||

    One more proposal simply requires that rich countries commit to cutting their “greenhouse gas emissions more than 100 per cent by 2040.”

    The mask slips...

  • R||

    The mask was never anything more than a transparent piece of green cellophane in the first place.

  • American Patriot||

    Thus you see the "calculated" gamble of Obama Admin in backing up car companies like Fisker and solar companies like Solyndra and SunPower to the tune of billions of dollars.
    It is a little like insider trading. If they were to succeed with climate regulations, the dollars that would flow back to them from all their cronies would be in billions!

  • El Duderino||

    When they say "green" jobs, they are speaking about their own jobs.

  • El Duderino||

    Wait, if we shut off more than half of our nations power plants, how the hell am I supposed to charge my electric car?

  • American Patriot||

    Not to worry. You will not need a car in Soviet style society that results.

  • Ivan Towtaheir||

    In Soviet America car charges you!

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Even if Obama loses re-Hood Ornamentation in 2012, it will only stave off the inevitable Sovietization of what's left of this country.

    Glad to see more people get that point.

  • free2booze||

    The UN also suggests we suspend the laws of thermodynamics. You can push your electric car down a big hill, which will charge your battery with enough power to drive back up the hill, and still have energy to spare.

  • El Duderino||

    Somehow, driving an electric car is more "efficient" because it gets better gas milage. Are these fucking people retarded? Of course it gets better gas milage, it doesn't run on fucking gas, but this doesn't make it more efficient. You still need to use the same ammount of energy to move a 2000 lb car 100 feet. The fucking laws of physics didn't change. We can barely generate enough electricity to satisfy current demand, mostly because of our fucking retarded energy policy and these enviro-nazis want to on one hand make our power generation system even less capable of meeting demand whilst demanding we drive electric cars. I mean are we in some kind of extended Monty Python skit or something.

    PS. Sorry for the rant, but how many goodman times are we going to have these meetings where we all seriously consider reverting civilization back to the middle ages. Every time I read a story on this topic, I feel like someone is shoving a Christmas tree directly up my ass and they didn't even have the courtesy to remove the ornaments.

  • ||

    Of course it gets better gas milage, it doesn't run on fucking gas, but this doesn't make it more efficient.

    Please see this table:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/E.....efficiency

  • El Duderino||

    You have to get the energy from somewhere... Where does it come from?

  • Tom Friedman||

    Why do you need a car. In China they rides bikes. China is the greatest country on earth. China, China, China...

  • Tom Friedman||

    I know there are cars there but those are for people like me, not for people like you.

  • ||

    Tom Friedman is a great american. Some times we do need to go around to countries not playing ball with the BIS central bank system and breakdown the dorrs of random houses and hit them on the head with a baseball bat and tell them to "suck on this".

  • Chinese Men||

    We like Tom Friedman because he can suck all our cocks... at the same time.

  • Tom Friedman||

    It's true... I can fit every Chinese cock in my mouth at the same time.

  • GILMORE||

    "more than 100 percent"

    We will reduce our current greenhouse gas emissions to nil, and also travel back in time and reduce previously emitted emissions.

  • El Duderino||

    This of course result in a paradox wherein the offending emissions never exist and therefore never give rise to a single AGW "study" thereby killing the whole movement.

    Of course the green movement will defy the easy-to-understand law that states an effect always follows a cause simply by demanding studies and subsequent action on greenhouse gas emissions simply because it's convenient to the cause of communism.

  • ||

    Brain aspode. *

  • ||

    A carbon-zero economy would be one where no fossil fuels were used for anything at all, I guess.

    All surface transportation - electric. Including trains.

    Air transport? Sorry, no way to fly an electric plane, so no more air transport.

    Shipping? Unless cargo ships go nuclear, or we go back to the Age of Sail, no more cargo ships.

    And, of course, all electric generation would have to be nuclear (oops, can't do that to Mother Gaia), hydro (ditto), wind (ditto), solar. So I guess we have to run the entire country on solar panels?

  • Wally Whirled||

    Solar panels and death panels.

  • eCig Vapor||

    Solar panels made from solar panels. Wind turbines made from materials mined by hand. You wouldn't be able to use plastics in it. All of our containers would be clay or glass made by wood fires. We would have to watch how much wood we burned versus how fast it was growing. As we process our manure, we will have to be careful about the methane released. So, we get to freeze in the winter and starve to death. Awesome. Where do I sign up?

  • ||

    "We would have to watch how much wood we burned versus how fast it was growing."

    You know better than that...burning wood produces CO2. We must all move to the equator (no heating required) and eat cold fish caught with nets made from braided tree bark.

  • eCig Vapor||

    And compete against the natives?

    If we moved to Brazil, we would be in a developing nation and thus could use fossil fuels again.

  • El Duderino||

    If I move to Brazil I'll have to shave my pubes otherwise they will know I am an American and deport me.

  • El Duderino||

    And yes I did stereotype all Brazillians. I won't stop making fun of Brazil until I finally see a fucking movie filmed there that does not somehow include a helicopter shot of that huge Jesus statue. Note to Hollywood: a simple subtitle reading "Brazil" will sufficiently tell the audience where things are happening. Also you could just have one of the character say something about the fact they are in Brazil, that works too.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    What about the movie Brazil?

  • El Duderino||

    I was thinking about that as I wrote this post and was kinda hoping nobody would call me out. Anyway, I should have known there would be at least one libertarian who has seen the movie Brazil.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Many times. BIG fan of Terry Gilliam.

  • ||

    Solar panel production is not carbon free. So what these people want is to pray to Gaia and magically get electricity from ether. And of course, their final source is the reduction of human population by 99.99%. Just those correct thinking Greens are allow to inherit the Earth.

  • spencer||

    It worked for me. I prayed to Gaia and now I have no body odor.

  • El Duderino||

    I prayed to Gaia and I got natural sugar. It just fell right out of the sugar beat into my fair trade coffee.

    Thank you Gaia.

  • adam||

    Also, everyone would have to stop breathing.

  • El Duderino||

    I've been working on this for the past forty seconds. If I keep this up I may have to call in sick to work.

  • adam||

    Solar is bad too. Can imagine how much land would be necessary to produce enough solar electricity to replace all electricity generation and other energy production for the US? I wonder if anyone has done this calculation.

  • Gray Ghost||

    Total USA electric generation per Wiki: 4369 billion kW*Hr in 2008.

    Average solar radiation in USA per day: From this wiki chart showing photovoltaic solar radiation intensities in the US, I get about 6 kW*Hr/m^2/day.

    So, you need ~2 billion m^2 of area. Or, a square about 45 km on a side. So, if we took all of metropolitan Phoenix, and covered it with PV cells, that should take care of it.

    This only covers electric power generation. You're going to need a bigger yard to account for powering electric cars, ships, planes, tractors, etc... Not to mention efficiency losses in transmission and in the PV cells themselves. Still, it's a smaller figure than I'd have thought before doing the estimate.

  • Neu Mejican||

    Surprise, they have.
    You could do it by putting solar panels on roofs and roadways.

    If put all in one place you would need an array that was between 100 and 200 miles on a side. But spread out over rooftops and roads, it ain't so daunting a size. Let than 1% of US land area.

  • adam||

    Link? Does that estimate cover only current electricity generation, or all energy production? Can you put solar cells on road and still drive on them?

  • Gilbert Martin||

    "Can you put solar cells on road and still drive on them?"

    And even if you could, what would that do to the traction between tires and the road?

  • ||

    maintence costs on these solar panels would only be 3 trillion dollars per year...My family of companies will be happy to serve this great country for the low discount price of only 2.5 trillion/yr.

  • ||

    maintence costs on these solar panels would only be 3 trillion dollars per year...My family of companies will be happy to serve this great country for the low discount price of only 2.5 trillion/yr.

  • Neu Mejican||

    Squirrels ate my last two attempts.
    I'll keep it short.

    Adam...it typically covers current production plus the cost of moving transportation to electric vehicles. There are a range of estimates. Lots of easily googled versions of the calculation.

    As for the "driving on the panals" thing... most proposals put them in medians/shoulders, etc...use that land in the right of way not being driven on.

    Old Mexican: Leave the engineering to us, the engineers.

    Lots of engineers working on distributed power generation ideas like this. They know as much as you about the issues. Interestingly much of the maintenance of a distributed network gets done by a distributed network of labor (property owners with solar panels on their roof, for instance. No need for a centralized solution when indiviudals will act to maintain their own system for their own benefit. Strange that you don't get that. Centralized planning = bad because it is inefficient, centralized power generation = good because it is more efficient?

    Economic efficiency (i.e. COST, you dumbass) IS an indicator of environmental impact

    Not a perfect indicator, particularly when the cost is widely distributed across both space and time. But you know that 'cuz you always tell us how you ain't one of them economic ignoramuses.

    ;^)

  • Neu Mejican||

    And even if you could, what would that do to the traction between tires and the road?

    As I said above, most don't have you driving on the panels...but look at this

    http://solarroadways.com/intro.shtml

  • Gilbert Martin||

    I doubt it would be tough enough to hold up under the weight of semi trucks constantly driving on it.

  • Neu Mejican||

    One of the challenges would be durability...as with any road surface. I can't imagine that they haven't considered this factor.

  • Sevo||

    Neu Mejican|12.5.11 @ 7:29PM|#
    ..."I can't imagine that they haven't considered this factor."

    Shorter Neu:
    I can't imagine what could go wrong!

  • Neu Mejican||

    Shorter Sevo...

    I have nothing to contribute.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Neu Mejican,

    adam: "I wonder if anyone has done this calculation."

    NM: You could do it by putting solar panels on roofs and roadways.


    You are surely jesting. Or being an ass, whichever poison you choose.

    Solar panels:
    + Require more maintenance per kilowatt than a coal firing plant. The reasons? Simple DUST. BATTERIES. Their DISPERSION. A coal-fired plant is a single, concise package, whereas solar panels require HUGE areas to comparatively produce the same power as a coal-fired plant. DUST that settles on panels reduces the production efficiency, and scratches the surfaces to a point they become USELESS (i.e. crazying.)
    + Are extremely INefficient producers of electrical power by operational cost. Economic efficiency (i.e. COST, you dumbass) IS an indicator of environmental impact. The more costly a good compared to a similar good, the more WASTE it represents.

    Leave the engineering to us, the engineers. Go play with dolls or something.

  • ||

    "I wonder if anyone has done this calculation."

    My numbers are rough but:

    I did some math a few months ago. In order to replace fossil fuels with wind (based on generator output, efficiency/predictability of the wind blowing and standard turbine spacing) you would need a wind farm the size of North Carolina.

    To replace fossil fuels with solar, given current technology, you would need a solar array the size of North Dakota.

  • ||

    or how much freshwater would be wasted on cleaning them?

  • Matt M||

    "Our greatest experiment- Civilization itself" -will succeed only if it can live on natures terms, not mans. To do this we must adopt principals in which the short term is trumped by the long; in which caution prevails over ingenuity; in which the absurd myth of endless growth is replaced by respect for natural limits; ...in which progress is steered by precautionary wisdom." - Ronald Wright

  • El Duderino||

    Natural limits huh... What would those be, and why do you believe we won't innovate a way through those limits before, or at least once we reach them?

  • Sevo||

    And why should we believe Matt M or Ronald Wright has any better crystal ball than the jackass on the corner with the "WORLD ENDS TOMORROW" sandwich board?

  • El Duderino||

    I'm that guy with the sandwich board. And if you understand quantumn mechanics as I do, then you know that the world ends an infinite number of times per second as each event in time is anhilated in the never ending fugue of entropy that is our universe.

  • Sevo||

    Yeah, but I'm still looking forward to a cup o'joe in the morning.
    Even if that cup is quantumly different from the one I had this morning.

  • El Duderino||

    It's all gone ya see! And it'll happen again too! You can't stop it! Can't nobody stop it! Were not real, noe of this is real, it's all just an illusion. It's all just traces of "reality" destroying itself over and over and we are stuck in this loop. We were nothing and we are becoming nothing and therefore . . . Ohh free coffee!

  • Mr. FIFY||

    What you need, is to hook the logic circuits of a Bambleweeny 57 Sub-Meson Brain to an atomic vector plotter suspended in a strong Brownian Motion producer - say, a good cup of tea...

  • Sevo||

    El Duderino|12.5.11 @ 10:38PM|#
    "It's all gone ya see! And it'll happen again too! You can't stop it! Can't nobody stop it! Were not real, noe of this is real, it's all just an illusion. It's all just traces of "reality" destroying itself over and over and we are stuck in this loop. We were nothing and we are becoming nothing and therefore . . . Ohh free coffee!"

    Not close to a decent spoof. F. And that's a courtesy.

  • Trespassers W||

    steered

    "Whoops, let me readjust my mask!"

  • Matt M||

    Incredible how ignorant our leaders and many of our folks on this continent are about the effects of carbon emissions. All this destructive behavior for the almighty dollar and a few jobs and a pat on the back from the oil cartel and countries with insatiable appetite for gas to run their dirty operations in china. Let's all just flush our future generations natural resources down the toilet!

  • Sevo||

    Matt M|12.5.11 @ 12:56PM|#
    "Incredible how ignorant our leaders and many of our folks on this continent are about the effects of carbon emissions. All this destructive behavior for the almighty dollar and a few jobs and a pat on the back from the oil cartel and countries with insatiable appetite for gas to run their dirty operations in china. Let's all just flush our future generations natural resources down the toilet!"

    Spoof or stupidity^n? You decide.

  • GILMORE||

    All this destructive behavior for the almighty dollar and a few jobs and a pat on the back from the oil cartel and countries with insatiable appetite for gas to run their dirty operations in ....

    This was much better when in the form of an O'Jays funk song.

    I vote parody. Or recent college graduate.

  • ||

    "No computer for YOU!"

  • Matt M||

    You're welcome to have your opinion. And skepticism is healthy. However, unless you're well versed in the science and have a complete, well reasoned argument that can refute the consensus of thousands of independent researchers across the globe, please don't try to turn your opinion into fact.

    I've read high quality studies refuting some models and data, but that's the normal scientific process. The field of research hasn't been negated though, only specific points, and it's moving us towards a more truthful answer. That answer still appears to be climate change driven by emissions. If you don't agree with this, you're rejecting the entire scientific process, which is what has given us our current standard of living.

  • Sevo||

    Matt M|12.5.11 @ 1:41PM|#
    "You're welcome to have your opinion. And skepticism is healthy. However, unless you're well versed in the science and have a complete, well reasoned argument that can refute the consensus of thousands of independent researchers across the globe, please don't try to turn your opinion into fact."

    You know, since you're obviously a lefty, I'm not surprised that my disagreement with your strawman is construed as a lack of knowledge.
    Before you start arguing from authority, I'd suggest you take some elementary courses in logic and 'deconstruct' your silly claims.

  • GILMORE||

    If you don't agree with this, you're rejecting the entire scientific process, which is what has given us our current standard of living.

    Actually, free enterprise. Science's main contribution has been anticeptics/antibiotics etc. And the atomic bomb.

    Aside from that, I've rarely seen such a dense concentration of rhetorical fallicies.

  • ||

    "If you don't agree with this, you're rejecting the entire scientific process, which is what has given us our current standard of living."

    And another idiot unfamiliar with the definition of "scientific process"

    "I've read high quality studies refuting some models and data,"
    Cite them.

    "that answer still appears to be climate change driven by emissions."
    Cite.

    "If you don't agree with this, you're rejecting the entire scientific process"
    Yes, because you say so, right? If the "scientific process" was conducted thoroughly, you would have a point..but you don't.

  • ||

    Consensus is not part of science. What part of that is so hard for you idiots to grasp?

    It's like you say it over and over thinking that next time we'll all say 'oh, consensus, we get it now'

  • El Duderino||

    Matt, you must have just graduated this past summer with what I am sure is a very expensive degree, but surely one of your professors explained the merits of citing your research.

    And BTW genius, this article is about climate change POLITICAL POLICY, not science, so feel free to explain why you thing the various incarnations of policy described in this article are of any merit whatsoever.

    Let's just assume for the sake of argument that the most recent IPCC estimates on AGW are accurate, why is this even a problem and why are the solutions proposed at the never ending series of Coppenhagen conferences or Kyoto even the right solutions?

    If the weather gets warmer, wear fewer layers.
    If the oceans rise up, move inland or build a dyke. It's not the first time civilization has had to adapt to climate. How do you think the native Americans got over to the Americas? The crossed a goddamn ice bridge for Christ sake. They survived by dealing with the extreme cold, which is far more lethal than a few more degrees of warmth.

    Is dismantling the engine of civilization really going to make a noticeable difference? Wouldn't adaptation to a slightly different environment be a more useful way to deal? I don't have anything agains "alternative" energy, but you can't just shut the lights off. You describe our world as this greed fueled death spiral where the accumulation of wealth is the noose and our own selfish ambitions is the executioner, but you are seeing only the flesh and missing the reality below.

    In reality, survival is an inherent human trait. Survival requires cooperation. Survival requires love. Survival requires charity. Our efforts to survive have resulted in an explosive technological revolution, which has and will continue to evolve. We feed more and more people because of innovation. We cure more diseases because of technology like computers and MRI machines and STMs. This technology becomes less expensive and more powerful every day and he technology transmits more information to more people. Those people use the information for their own survival and they also use it to innovate, thereby accelerating our technological evolution. Computers, MRIs, cancer drugs and even food don't just pop into existence. Even food needs to be harvested, and if you hope to feed a large population, it needs to be planted on a large scale and fertilized with a highly efficient fertilizer. Computers don't just exist on their own, they come from metals mined from the earth, from chips made in a factory, which was built by machines built in yet another factory. You see Matt, we build these things to move beyond our physical limitations so that more and more of us can survive and you cannot do any of these things without energy. If you tax carbon, you tax every productive effort and you reduce thesurvivability of the human race,you also make it more difficult to adapt to changes in climate. The people that will suffer the most under these stupid schemes is the third world. The third world is already trying to climb a shit-greased pole they don't need something else to come along that makes it more difficult to develop into a relatively more survivable second or first world nation. Do you honestly think that the third world countries of Africa will be better off if they are less capable of producing their own energy, aka, food, computers, medical supplies, clean water and so on?

    Even if these ridiculous carbon reduction schemes work, what will we have to show for it? At most a reduction of average temperature over the course of a century of something less than a couple degrees Fahrenheit. We will also have billions more people starving to death most of them in the third world, a stagnant technological evolution resulting in fewer cures, fewer advances that help us become smarter so that we can help ourselves and therefore each other survive longer and enjoy life more. But at least the goddamn green crybabies will have achieved their goals of curbing populate growth, a strange public policy fetish they seem to have in common with communists.

  • Sevo||

    El Duderino,
    You have far more patience with brain-dead lefties than do I.
    I wish you well, but I'm not optimistic.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    El Dude, didn't you get the memo? Climate-change political policy = the science is settled so shut your fuckin' gob about it and pay ten bucks a gallon for low-octane horse piss.

    Ask Tony, he'll get you up to speed. Oh, and you'll need a Phillips-head screwdriver for the lobotomy.

  • Tony||

    www.google.com will help you out. There are layers upon layers of mental hangups required for you not to understand where current science is on this topic, just as you do uncontroversially with any other topic except maybe evolution in your case.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Don't fucking condescend in my direction, asshat. I'm not as stupid as you say I am. Not even close, for that matter.

  • Tony||

    Smart people can have blind spots. Very smart people believe in invisible friends in the sky.

  • Sevo||

    Tony|12.5.11 @ 11:21PM|#
    'www.google.com will help you out. There are layers upon layers of mental hangups required for you not to understand where current science is on this topic"

    Yes, shithead, I'm sure you're a sucker for every 'level' of mental hangup ever found.
    You are the most dishonest, sleazy, self-righteous asshole I've yet to encounter.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    But... only stupid, gun-toting inbreds believe in God! Rachel Maddow said so!

  • El Duderino||

    Yes, google, the bastion of accurate unimpeachable data, the go to resource for all serious scientists who seek facts that conveniently match up perfectly to their desired result.

  • El Duderino||

    At this point my responses to this sort of nonsense are more for therapy. See my comments above, RE: Christmas trees being shoved up my ass (ornaments included) for evidence that this therapy is a necessity.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    I'm sure there's at least one fetish website devoted to that particular therapy...

  • So...||

    ...does Tony frequent such places?

  • GILMORE||

    Earth be natty dread rudeboi

  • ||

    Even the most extreme predictions on the rise in temperature do not rise to levels that have already occurred during the course of human existence.

    I'm not sure why we should panic over the fact that temperatures might go up a bit but not as high as they've ever been for us.

  • ||

    Because of teh childrenz!!!1!! or something

  • first||

    Meet Silvie - a crazy, lanky, fun girl from Prague who lives life to the maximum.

    Silvie is the ultimate free-spirit and not one to follow the rules! For example, you may have noticed Silvie prefers a more natural look. She tells us that she loves her bush, and says it makes her feel like a lioness; raw and animalistic. Silvie’s lifestyle reflects her unconventional personality, not only is she bisexual she is also a naturist.

    She has a typical fashion models body: long skinny arms, long legs and a petite structure but she still has a full bust and curves - which is very rare, a rare gem you could say. All blessings from her mother apparently!

    Nothing is taboo when it comes to Silvie!

  • Sevo||

    Tony|12.5.11 @ 12:57PM|#
    "Even if I did make the effort to live a carbon-neutral life, it wouldn't make a bit of difference to the overall problem. That problem can't be solved by individuals acting responsibly, but only by large collections of people doing so via national and global policy changes."

    Shithead, you just admitted you're a lying hypocrite.

  • Tony||

    Say we each witness a murder, and each murder someone. I announce it to the world and say "something must be done about murder!" You say nothing but "we should do nothing about murder!"

    I may be a hypocrite, but you are morally contemptible.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Bullshit. Murder is the ultimate taking of the rights of another person.

    But you knew that before you typed your vulgar retort.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    What the fuck this has to do with hypothetical murders... eh, who can say.

    But good call anyway, Sevo, despite the irrational rabbit-trail thrown in your path.

  • Sevo||

    Tony|12.5.11 @ 11:09PM|#
    "Say we each witness a murder, and each murder someone. I announce it to the world and say "something must be done about murder!" You say nothing but "we should do nothing about murder!"
    I may be a hypocrite, but you are morally contemptible."

    You lying, sleazy shithead. You are not only a hypocrite, you are beneath contempt.
    There must be a place in the world for you but I can only imagine it would be in some 'paradise' like No. Korea. Except they *reward* lying, liar.

  • Tony||

    Me = Murder + confession + positive action

    You = Murder + denial + substanceless name calling

    (murder cancels out)

    I'm still winning.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    "substanceless name calling"

    Better check yourself.

  • Sevo||

    Tony|12.5.11 @ 11:20PM|#
    "Me = Murder + confession + positive action"

    Yes, you sleazy shithead, you can justify murder.
    It's not surprising; your moral standards are despicable.

  • Tony||

    I knew you'd miss the point.

  • There was a point?||

  • Sevo||

    Well, I responded with anger; now let's parse this:
    Tony|12.5.11 @ 11:09PM|#
    "Say we each witness a murder, and each murder someone. I announce it to the world and say "something must be done about murder!" You say nothing but "we should do nothing about murder!"
    No, given that ridiculous example, you'd claim you murdered someone, but it was for the good of society. I wouldn't have murdered anyone, since I dislike violence, but I'd point out you're a lying, sleazy, murderous shithead. And report your murder.
    -------
    "I may be a hypocrite, but you are morally contemptible."
    I'm neither, you're both.

  • Wholly Holy Cow||

    Re: Global Warming

    1) Who cares? We'll all be dead in 50 years.

    2) In 50 years, the worldwide cadre of nitwit Lefties will have moved onto a new bullshit cause intended to increase government's power.

    The new Lefty scare is gonna be either:

    A) Asteroids from the Van Allen belt crushing Earth.

    B) Stalin, Napoleon, Betsy Ross and Attila the Hun have finished their time machine. And they're coming back...back to the future, and they're pissed off.

    C) Supermegacanceraidsrabiescholeraidsagainwhynot Syndrome. No symptoms, it can't be diagnosed by any medical evaluation. But a 97% tax on all that you own (including blood and semen) will cure it. Unless you have some offshore accounts, then you might need two doses to cure Supermegacanceraidsrabiescholeraidsagainwhynot Syndrome.

  • ||

    Betsy Ross

    Ummm... is she gonna tear up all American flags or why did she get bunched with all those nasty boys?

  • ||

    I thought we were told before the last conference that if nothing was done at that one, it was going to be too late and that doom was certain. Well, nothing was done, so why are they having another, I though it was already too late to save humanity, isn't this just needlessly wasting both time and money?

  • Patrick Rich||

    "Negative" CO2 emissions for a developed country *are* possible through the magic of carbon credits, traded through a wonderful carbon exchange, making gazillions of real currency units for well-placed participants while shifting massive amounts of wealth from developed countries with large CO2 balances to third-world cesspits with offsetting "credits" to sell. So wake up and and realize THIS is what it's all about. AGW is just the crisis du jour being used to flog carbon trading and all the other popular environmental scams. Real issues, concerns and possible constructive developments are being buried by crooked rhetoric and twisted schemes.

  • ||

    More nonsense on stilts by a deluded Reason writer who ignores the actual facts. First, according to a JAXA study that used satellite data, the US is not a net emitter of carbon dioxide. While it burns a lot of fuel, which releases the gas the amount given off is more than offset by the increase of biomass in the country. The same is true of the EU, Canada, and Russia.

    Second, the radiative imbalance due to the increased concentration of CO2 was supposed to show up in ocean heat storage. It was supposed to be easy to measure because hundreds of millions were spent on equipment that would provide accurate and comprehensive temperature data for the top 700 meters of the ocean for the first time in history. Well, the data from the ARGO system shows that the prediction has not come true and the data falsifies the theory. Whether this is due to a failure of the radiative imbalance to take place or of the excess heat being lost to space in some way is not the issue. What is the issue is the fact that the AGW theory has been falsified. No amount of cherry picking, data adjustments, or the use of bad math can ever lend credibility to the discredited narrative. It is time to move on and time for Reason to start paying attention to the actual science as well as the politics.

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