Carbon Dioxide

U.S. Carbon Dioxide Emissions at Lowest Level Since 1991

And that was one year before the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change was negotiated.



The nations of the world agreed in 1992 at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro to the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change. The goal of the UNFCCC is to stabilize greenhouse gas concentrations "at a level that would prevent dangerous anthropogenic (human induced) interference with the climate system." It states that "such a level should be achieved within a time-frame sufficient to allow ecosystems to adapt naturally to climate change, to ensure that food production is not threatened, and to enable economic development to proceed in a sustainable manner."

In 1991 U.S. carbon dioxide emissions were 5,064 million metric tons and rose to 5,170 million metric tons the next year. Now the Energy Information Administration reports:

U.S. energy-related carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions totaled 2,530 million metric tons in the first six months of 2016. This was the lowest emissions level for the first six months of the year since 1991, as mild weather and changes in the fuels used to generate electricity contributed to the decline in energy-related emissions. EIA's Short-Term Energy Outlook projects that energy-associated CO2 emissions will fall to 5,179 million metric tons in 2016, the lowest annual level since 1992.


Changing fossil fuel consumption mix. Coal and natural gas consumption each decreased compared to the first six months of 2015. However, the decrease was greater for coal, which generates more carbon emissions when burned than natural gas. Coal consumption fell 18%, while natural gas consumption fell 1%. These declines more than offset a 1% increase in total petroleum consumption, which rose during that period as a result of low gasoline prices.

In a 2015 report, the EIA noted, "Natural gas emissions have risen every year since 2009. Because it is the least carbon-intensive fuel, subsitution of natural gas for other fossil fuel inputs has served to mitigate overall CO2 growth in the industrial sector."

Those who worry about man-made global warming should thank shale gas fracking for this result.

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  1. Amazing what the development of massive natural gas reserves combined with a sluggish economy can do.

    1. My friend ‘Sarah Bartlett’ makes $95/hour on the internet. She has been laid off for six months but last month her paycheck was $14750 just working on the internet for a few hours.. Go to this website and click tech tab to start your own work…. http://www.Trends88.Com

      1. Change that to ‘Sarah Jackson’ and I might believe you.

        1. Or Barrett-Jackson . . .

        2. Flagging for title IX violations

    2. Trust government to make energy policy, you get Solyndra and a lighter wallet. Trust the market and you get a result that actually should make left-wing greens happy if they had any sense of shame.

      1. And to prove they won’t, see Tony (below).
        I’m sure Jack, out resident mud-momma fundy will be here soon to provide more proof.

  2. Plants need CO2 to breath. Why do you hate plants?

    1. They’re crowding out the meat on my plate.

    2. You better be thankful whatsherface isn’t around.

  3. Seriously, when we do switch to a fuel source that doesn’t emit CO2 (as it seems we ultimately must), won’t there then be an issue with too-much oxygen building up in the atmosphere at that point? The extra carbon in the atmosphere over the period since industrialization, it would seem to me, has caused a complimentary growth in the flora’s ability to process said CO2, and that vegetative infrastructure will keep on processing all the carbon it can, presumably resulting in an excess of oxygen.

    What am I missing here?

    1. What am I missing here?

      Mother nature, man. That’s all that matters.

      1. Just seems like if solar, or some as yet undiscovered technology, vastly outstrips carbon’s ability to compete, kw/$-wise, the transition to that new fuel will be extremely rapid, yet the pace of carbon uptake/oxygen release will decrease more slowly.

        1. The thing is, the *power* of the effect of increased CO2 on plant life is not related to the power of its effect on temperature.

          Meaning that (again, according to some sketchy models) a *tiny* increase in CO2 has a large effect on average global temperatures – while not having a notable effect on plant life because the the percent change is too small to do anything *there*.

        2. is the unit of measurement Kw/h/$? legit question, not trying to be a pedantic a-hole. maybe this isn’t necessary to debate but i want to get this shit straight in my head.

          1. No you’re right, with Kw/hr being the measure of energy.

            1. Actually, KW-hr. Not power/time. Power * time.

              1. Actually, kWh is the preferred abbreviation for kilowatt-hours in Syst?me International.

                — Pedant

    2. Sounds like a good reason to raise more cattle and eat more beef!

    3. What the deleterious effects of oxygen at that partial pressure are.

      The excess CO2 is a problem (if you accept the models) because it reduces the heat radiated away from earth. An excess of oxygen doesn’t do that, nor does it increase the amount of heat that can escape – ie excess oxygen won’t cause ‘global cooling’.

      A high enough PP will lower the ignition temperatures of a lot of things – things like forests – but we’re talking adding significantly more oxygen to the atmosphere (even accounting for the different percentages that O2 and CO2 make up of air) than we’ve pumped CO2 out.

      1. Ok, that makes sense. What I was worried about was the rapid rate of CO2 decrease/oxygen increase due to rapid adoption of a revolutionary energy technology vs the relatively slow rate of plant attrition.

    4. If the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere decreases, there will be a corresponding decrease in the amount of plant life.

      1. No there won’t. There’s been no noticed increase in plant life based on the actual increase in atmospheric CO2 so there’s no reason to expect there will be a decrease if its removed.

        If the current increase in CO2 actually has an effect on plants, its sufficiently delayed to not be noticeable over a couple hundred years.

        1. How do they even measure the amount of plant life? Compare current satellite images to pre-industrial satellite images?

          1. Isn’t it a best guess about how much land isn’t dedicated to agriculture/cities?

        2. See, that sounds highly counter-intuitive. Is it that the percentage increase in actual CO2 is relatively low over the period in question?

        3. That’s not true at all. There is a definite relationship between concentration of CO2 in the air and rate of plant growth. Even going from 300ppm to 400ppm.

          1. I’ve always been bugged about the periodicity in the Keeling Curve. It’s bizarrely consistent throughout the timeline despite the supposition that the dominate source of carbon is changing. Either one source is paradoxically/counterintuitively mimicking the other or the ‘ascending’ source isn’t doing anything the prior source hasn’t seen and/or can’t adapt to. It is believed that the Northern (bio-)Hemisphere is taking “deeper breaths” of CO2.

        4. There’s been no noticed increase in plant life based on the actual increase in atmospheric CO2

          There actually has been, seemingly causing an increase in plant biomass.

          That’s being packaged as a bad thing, though. We’re losing precious deserts which now supposedly shed more heat than those pesky, heat-trapping forests.

          1. Ain’t it weird how the people who don’t deny Climate Change don’t want any actual changes to climates? Its like a weird noble savage extension where the perfect climate was whatever was around just before civilization could affect it, and any deviation from that must be bad (and anthropogenic in nature).

            1. I think it’s as simple as Edenic thinking translated into the pseudo-scientific leftist worldview. The presumption of a “prefect eternal state” that existed prior to being polluted and corrupted by human civilization.

        5. There’s been no noticed increase in plant life based on the actual increase in atmospheric CO2.

          Sure about that?

          In the end, they teased out the carbon dioxide fertilization effect from all other influences and calculated that this could account for an 11 percent increase in global foliage since 1982.


          No idea if this has been replicated, or if you could even get funding for a study on the positive effects of CO2 building up in the atmosphere.

    5. “What am I missing here?”

      The numbers.

      Earth’s atmosphere is roughly 21% oxygen, and less than 0.5% carbon dioxide. So, even if all carbon was removed from the atmosphere the percentage of oxygen gas present would not increase appreciably.

      1. That is the answer. The percentage of oxygen, even with wide swings in the CO2 concentration, is always about 50 times the carbon.

      2. Edit: Double checked my numbers. Carbon dioxide is less than one twentieth of one percent of the atmosphere.

    6. There will still be plenty of CO2, even if we stop burning all fossil fuels tomorrow. Far more is released by natural processes than by human activity.

      1. Now you are just being difficult and undermining the AGW cult’s agenda with facts…

    7. The oxygen going into the atmosphere is also originally came out of the atmosphere, so it’s not going to change the aggregate levels.

      Carbon emissions are an issue because you’re pulling the carbon out of the ground and putting it into the atmosphere, raising the amount in the atmosphere.

      1. Yes, but then the plants take that carbon back out of the atmosphere, returning it to the ground, and replacing it in the atmosphere with oxygen stripped of the carbon.

  4. Those emissions really only declined because of Obama. #Legacy

    1. Well, the part that’s due to the sluggish economy, anyway.

      1. One of the popular arguments among stupid people is to assume “Stuff that Happened” when someone was president …. must somehow be primarily due to the influence of that president.

        1. Sort of. Their guy is responsible for the good stuff that happened, but is totally not responsible for any of the bad stuff that happened. And vice versa.

        2. I suspect the mentality behind sacrificing kings still informs our political mentality.

          The President/King is not an administrator, he’s a totem. If “things” go well, he is Good. If “things” go bad, he must be dismembered to satisfy the angry gods.

          1. Everybody knows Bill Clinton is responsible for the internet.

            1. So that explains why the internet is 60% porn.

    2. Can’t wait for the sea levels to start receding next! #Legacy

    3. A Republican administration would have been throwing money at coal no matter how the market looked just to stick it to the envirofags (and line the pockets of their business allies). I think we can safely say Obama has a lot to do with any progress in this area.

      1. Oh sure, because fracking was a progressive environmental push.

        1. Actually, at one point is was. Back when it was not considered viable or profitable. Then somebody figured out how to make it work economically, we started doing it, emissions went down, prices were reasonable, and the Greenies needed a new thing to bitch about.

      2. Wow, that was really well timed to prove my point

        1. Tony is kind of an idiot savant in that respect. He’s a genius at illustrating other people’s points about stupidity.

          1. Isn’t that just a plain old idiot?

        2. It’s a shame, I was headed down to post the exact same joke about how one side will definitely be looking at the years on that graph and rushing to give Obama credit despite his preference for much worse energy sources than natural gas.

          Not only did you beat me to the observation, but Tony became living proof of it before I could even read the article.

      3. Tony, I would be interested in hearing about all these subsidies that coal gets.

        Other than the different tax treatment that resource extraction gets, faster writeoffs on exploration and development costs vs amortization of capital cost that other industries get and depletion allowances vs depreciation etc, I’d be interested in knowing what exactly where coal gets anywhere near the kind of direct cash subsidies that ‘alternative energy” gets.

      4. It’s been declining since 1991.


        1. He was the one the planet was waiting for.

      5. Yeah, right, because Democrats and environmentals have been such ardent supporters of fracking.

  5. This was the lowest emissions level for the first six months of the year since 1991, as mild weather and changes in the fuels used to generate electricity contributed to the decline in energy-related emissions.

    So, a warmer climate stems global warming?

    1. Just one more way that Gaia self-regulates to keep things in balance. Yet the people most inclined to see things in those terms are oddly silent when pointing it out would hurt their position.

      1. I was just going to say that this sounds like one o’ them there ‘negative feedback loops’ by which natural processes dampen out oscillations and returns to equilibrium.

        But hey, I’m just one a’ them high-school graduates and don’t know nothing about real science.

    2. Here’s a wild idea. What if the Earth’s climate is a complex system of multiple complementary interactions and processes which tends to adjust towards equilibrium when any given input changes? After all, the climate is in a constant state of flux. Looking just at temperature, the planet has heated and cooled over its history in a cyclical pattern that suggests some sort of compensatory or mitigating influence from other environmental inputs, like the kind of thing illustrated by those “drinking bird” toys.

      This is why I have such a hard time buying into CAGW. It’s the ultimate lesson in “correlation isn’t causation”. It’s like saying that every morning my making coffee causes the sun to rise.

      1. ” It’s like saying that every morning my making coffee causes the sun to rise.”

        I’m just glad it’s not an either or, because, well, coffee.

        1. Yeah, if it was an either/or, well, sorry for causing the vampire apocalypse, guys.

      2. It’s like saying that every morning my making coffee causes the sun to rise change position in the sky.


  6. Hollywood told me fracking was bad! I’m so confused now.

    1. The key to remember is not to believe your lying eyes.

      1. Or hide them

    2. Oh, well, that’s the kind of thing you’re supposed to say in public to the stupid proles. Once you’re safely away from the hoi polloi you can like fracking again.

      1. public vs. private position-just ask Hillary

    3. I assume the Jihad against fracking will continue since it delivers lower cost energy to Americans.

      1. That, and strips pricing power from the cadre of Human-Rights Violators known as OPEC.

      2. Apparently it also destroys small towns and virgin landscapes that nobody gave a crap about, especially on the left, until somebody figured out how to make money off of it. Next thing you know the Dakotas go from worthless, boring flyover country to the centerpiece of a John Mellencamp song.

    4. Fracking don’t fuel Leonardo’s Gulfwing.

  7. I can also thank fracking for the earthquakes that have been occurring in my neck of the woods, a place where buildings are not traditionally constructed with earthquakes in mind.

    It’s like a fetish for you guys. If we’re not drilling a hole and pulling shit up from the earth, it’s not the good kind of energy! Solar and wind are pussy energy.

    1. Well Tony – you’re perfectly welcome to build a wind/solar farm to power your home. Of course you’ll still need to drill a hole and pull shit up from the earth in order to keep the fossil-fuel generator on standby for when your ‘renewable’ energy production facility get heavy cloud cover, the wind dies down, its night time, the sun’s up and its hot, the sun’s up and its cold, when the wind is blowing too hard . . .

      1. You guys really just set aside the century of massive government subsidy for fossil fuel energy as if it never existed, don’t you?

        1. And Tony shows he also doesn’t know what a subsidy is.

        2. Keeping your money is not a fucking subsidy. Unless you think all the money that companies and individuals make actually belongs to the government. (We already know that’s what you think Tony.)

        3. analysis/requests/subsidy/pdf/ subsidy.pdf

          solar gets >400 times the subsidy coal gets per megawatt hour.

          (to get that eia URL through the 50-character limit spaces were added. delete spaces for it work)

        4. Why are you complaining about utilities being regulated?

          It never ceases to amaze me when leftists complain about the consequences of their own policies.

          1. It wasn’t the consequences they intended .

        5. Let’s not forget that wind turbines are made of steel and the iron ore to make it must come out of the ground. Solar panels are made from rare earth elements that must be mined in not-so eco friendly places like China, Africa, and Russia. You can make your windmills out of wood I guess, but still need copper for the wires, which also must come out of the ground.

          1. You can make your windmills out of wood I guess,

            Recommend to him that we make more stuff out of one of mankind’s most abundant, phenomenally capable, and wholly man-made/”unnatural” carbon sinks (plastic) and see how that goes.

        6. As I asked above, name these subsidies and we can then talk about ending them.

        7. I keep hearing about these subsidies that the big oil companies get, but when pressed no liberal is able to name one of any significance. Oh, sometimes, they’ll mention the subsidies on ethanol, and it is a huge subsidy; but it’s a subsidy on bio-fuel that the oil industry fought against. If one bothers to look up the subsidies that big oil gets, the biggest of them all is the ability to LIFO for inventory and cost-of-goods-sold valuation. But just about every business can use LIFO if it wants, and with low oil prices it’s not so valuable anyway.

          In 2015, the baddest ass oil company of them all, ExxonMobil, made $16 billion of evil profits. It paid out $22 billion in sales-based taxes, $5 billion in income taxes, and $27 billion in other taxes and duties: a total of $54 billion in taxes. I rather doubt its subsidies were any greater than a roundoff error.

          I also doubt that the sum of all taxes paid by entirety of the wind, solar, and biofuels industries minus subsidies received is anything other than a hugely negative number whose cost is borne by taxpayers like me, and ExxonMobil.

      2. Solar City is big where I am. I’ve even thought about getting solar panels through them on their monthly lease plan just to see if I can shave a few bucks off my electric bill. But even they (and every other reputable solar company) say that the kind of solar system you’d need to go entirely off the grid would require more panels than you could mount on your roof, would be prohibitively expensive for the average homeowner–especially when you add the cost of maintenance, replacing broken panels, etc.–and would still require storage batteries sufficient to handle gaps in generation due to weather and so forth.

        Really, if you wanted to go entirely renewable, you’d need solar and geothermal in tandem, neither of which are cheap for what you’d need to go off the grid. This is something I’ve looked into because of my self-sufficiency fetish. Both are great for what they are, but they’re still not (and probably never will be) a complete replacement for traditional power plants unless you’ve got a ton of money and a lot of land.

        1. The only carbon emissions free (100% even) technology mankind posses, is despised by the Gaia worshipers, because it doesn’t afford them the handy “Needz more intrusive government collectivism” line that the CO2 hating cultists peddle.

      3. Tony hates birds and wants to mess up their migratory patterns.

    2. “Fracking is NOT causing most of the induced earthquakes. Wastewater disposal is the primary cause of the recent increase in earthquakes in the central United States.”

      —-United State Geological Society

      To whatever extent that is a danger, it may still be possible to mitigate for and/or avoid those effects entirely by doing something differently with the wastewater.

      Regardless, there are plenty of people who would welcome the trade of minimal earthquakes for 40% less carbon intensive fuel sources, and CO2 from natural gas burns off about 40% less CO2 than coal.

      “Each year the southern California area has about 10,000 earthquakes. Most of them are so small that they are not felt.”

      1. And the water injection was started to “help replenish the aquifers.”

      2. FWIW, the LP candidate for Texas Railroad Oil & Gas Commissioner is well aware of this fact. Unlike his GOP opponent, twice-named as the worst legislator in the Texas Legislature by Texas Monthly magazine, the LP’s Mark Miller recognizes that both mineral rights owners and surface owners have property rights, and he won’t be a pushover for the industry in anticipation of campaign contributions. Unlike the Democrat opponent, he’s not a 79-year-old retired schoolteacher who wants to ban fracking. Instead, the LP candidate Mark Miller has a PhD in petroleum engineering, was a full professor of petroleum engineering at UT-Austin, and has decades of experience in oil and gas.

        1. That is good to know. I’ll make sure to pimp him on Facebook.

    3. Tony|10.14.16 @ 12:51PM|#
      “I can also thank fracking for the earthquakes that have been occurring in my neck of the woods, a place where buildings are not traditionally constructed with earthquakes in mind.”

      I’m sure, since you’re a ‘sciencuy’ sort of guy, you have proof of that, right? Right?
      Oh, and can we hope you’ll die in one?

      1. He has the same proof that JackassAce has that global warming is producing more frequent and intense hurricanes.

        Saying that Oklahoma has never had earthquakes before is about the same as saying the southern and eastern coasts of the USA have never had hurricanes before.

    4. I can also thank fracking for the earthquakes that have been occurring in my neck of the woods

      Wastewater disposal from drilling operations is not unique to fracking. The correlation between the wastewater disposal operations and the (mostly imperceptible) earthquakes in OK is due to having picked a stupid place to do it and doing it in a somewhat stupid way.

      None of this, of course, has anything to do with federal regulations regarding wastewater disposal.

    5. I can also thank fracking for the earthquakes that have been occurring in my neck of the woods,

      You can? Throw me a link, at least.

  8. When CO2 emissions really started plunging with the surge in supply of natural gas circa 2008, the prevailing explanation among environmentalists at the time was that it was primarily due to the recession.

    The key idea for them being that you can’t have economic growth and falling CO2 emissions, so we’re all gonna have to learn to live with less under what would amount to government imposed recession lasting through a transition to carbon free alternatives.

    Fortunately for the rest of us, carbon emissions continued to decline even as the economy grew. And yet that belief among environmentalists and average people–that economic growth and falling carbon emissions are mutually exclusive–remains a persistent problem.

    One of the problems with focusing on trying to convince people that AGW isn’t a problem is that it keeps us from debunking other beliefs that are much more harmful than believing in AGW. I don’t care whether people believe in AGW–so long as they oppose authoritarian and socialist solutions.

    On the other hand, the belief that if people care about the environment, then the government must necessarily squelch economic growth is much more dangerous than the belief in AGW itself. How can we relate to average people on other non-environmentalist issues if they believe that the government crushing economic growth is part of the solution to any of our problems?

    1. People who don’t believe in scientific fact ought not to be a part of the conversation, as they will obviously have nothing useful to add.

      If your model of how the economy should work can’t solve a problem like AGW, that is a problem with your model (a rather large problem).

      And there is plenty of research that indicates that methane, over the medium-term, is actually worse for emissions than coal.

      A free market does not preclude the possibility of humans continuing to burn petroleum products until it is all used up or we all die. That’s why total faith in the free market is dumb.

      1. I support you not being part of the conversation anymore, you know, since you don’t understand the scientific process, basic facts or reasoning.

        1. If it can’t be done with a flask and petri dish like when I was in 9th grade, it’s not science! DERRRRR.

          1. Can you describe the scientific method, and how your AGW claims are supported by it?

            1. 97% of climate scientist agree that Humans are the cause of global warming. You’re just a science denying repulicunt!

              /Tony’s science correspondence

        2. Fuck, Tony doesn’t even understand what a problem is.

      2. If your model of how the economy should work can’t solve a problem like AGW

        Whereas your model of the climate has been worse than useless.

        1. If your model of how the economy should work can’t solve a problem like AGW

          Holy shit, there’s so much wrong with just that statement.

          1. He got people talking to him, so that statement was perfect.

        2. AGW isn’t an economic problem, so why should it have an economic solution?

          1. What is that even supposed to mean?

      3. “People who don’t believe in scientific fact ought not to be a part of the conversation, as they will obviously have nothing useful to add.”

        Your disregard for the value of average people and their right to vote and make choices about their own economic well being is disgusting.

        If our environment is destroyed by global warming, it won’t be because of climate change deniers. It’ll be because morally depraved people like you offered average people a false choice between authoritarianism and poverty, on the green side, and democracy and prosperity on the other side.

        1. If our environment is destroyed by global warming, it won’t be because of climate change deniers.

          Tony’s dying words in that scenario: “Goddamn Republicans…”

          1. I have little doubt but that if saving the planet required Tony to embrace capitalism, he’d rather see the planet destroyed.

            1. ^^^^^^^ So much this.

            2. Saving humanity does require capitalism.

        2. Democrats have always been opposed to the notion of government of the people, by the people, and for the people.

          1. Even when they’re pro-democracy, it’s about legitimizing an elite to impose their will on the rest of us.

      4. A free market does not preclude the possibility of humans continuing to burn petroleum products until it is all used up or we all die.

        Nothing precludes the possibility. What happens in an eco-socialist paradise state when people start dying of exposure in the winter? The Party can deny it only for so long before people start burning whatever the fuck they can get their hands on to stay alive. If Pol Pot couldn’t permanently turn Cambodia into a subsistence-level agricultural commune, no one is going to eradicate the burning of fossil fuels “until [they] are all used up”.

        The market provides an effective discouragement mechanism. It is called price. If and when fossil fuels become very scarce, their price will increase enough to create incentives for alternatives. People will adapt, whether by developing other sources of energy or by being more conservative in their use of fossil fuels.

        Don’t talk about “facts” when you don’t even understand any of the things you are saying.

      5. If your model of how the economy should work can’t solve a problem like AGW

        Using free markets and individual liberty in a political environment that respects private property will make people of the world rich. The richer the world becomes, the more likely it will be to choose and afford renewables rather than burning coal and cow dung.

        So, yes, the libertarian model of the economy will solve global warming.

        1. Yeah, and the poorer people are, the less wiling they are to make voluntary sacrifices for the environment.

          I’ve been fishing with rednecks and hiking with yuppies over last summer, and none of them were too keen on destroying the environment. I don’t think most people want to destroy the environment anymore than they want to murder, rape, or steal from their neighbors.

          People will pay more for hybrids than the cost savings in gas is worth, and if that’s because it’s a prestige thing, then that just underscores my point–people will voluntarily go out of their way not to destroy the environment. And the wealthier they are, the less of an impact doing that has on their standard of living.

          On the other hand, if you convince people that the only way to save the environment is to destroy their own standard of living and give up their freedom of choice to government bureaucrats, you just end up making them more anti-environment than they would be otherwise.

          It’s extraordinary! Convincing people that the only way to save the environment is to destroy people’s standard of living is what anti-environmentalists should do. But there are so many environmentalists shooting themselves in the foot head that way.

      6. Tony|10.14.16 @ 12:57PM|#
        “People who don’t believe in scientific fact ought not to be a part of the conversation, as they will obviously have nothing useful to add.”

        Waiting for sciency proof of fracking = earthquakes.
        “A free market does not preclude the possibility of humans continuing to burn petroleum products until it is all used up or we all die. That’s why total faith in the free market is dumb.”

        “Conclusion” drawn from assertion masquerading as a fact.
        Fuck off, imbecile.

      7. Apostates and Heretics must not be allowed to speak.

        At least he’s not calling for rounding them up in rail cars like his idol Bill Nye (yet).

        1. Oh no, he did that a couple of years ago.

      8. There is no correlation between levels of CO2 and temperature. There is no proof otherwise.

      9. So, now that fracking can reliably supply natural gas, methane is the problem instead of CO2?

        How convenient!

    2. you didn’t get the memo that the ends justify the means.

      1. Frankly I’m beginning to doubt that it is even a matter of ends. Oh sure, the Frankfurt School project remains alive and active, but for many others I think it is simply pure will to power and nothing more.

        1. I’m less inclined to believe the average prog craves power over all others. I think it’s more that they don’t fully consider what the “means” would do to our standard of living and human progress over famine, poverty, and pestilence.

          1. Average prog? You a probably correct.

            It’s the ones who go the extra miles needed to get hold of the levers of power that worry me.

            By and large these people are direct heirs of the left Hegelians – God is dead, there is no order to the universe, only entropy and so all that ultimately matters is direct expression of their own will.

  9. So correct me if I’m wrong Ron, but: if 2016 is on track for being the hottest year since 1998, and global CO2 emission levels have decreased to pre-1991 levels, wouldn’t that mean that CO2 is not the driving force behind increased temperatures?

    1. China, we have to stop Chinese industry to destroy the economy and save the planet.

      1. I love Gaia so let’s kill Chinamen.

        1. San Francisco cock sucka.

    2. It would seem to imply that, yes. At the very least it further falsifies the hypothesis that CO2 is the driver of global warming.

    3. The real takeaway of the last 20 years in “climate science” is that, whether the planet is going to warm indefinitely or not, the sensitivity of the temperature to CO2 is far less than the alarmist predictions made it out to be.

      1. Addendum: Atmospheric CO2 concentration is not “back to pre-1991 levels” which Ken’s comment alludes to. In fact, atmospheric CO2 concentration has increased substantially since 1991, but the temperature hasn’t (the increase, if any, is slight).

    4. “So correct me if I’m wrong Ron, but: if 2016 is on track for being the hottest year since 1998, and global CO2 emission levels have decreased to pre-1991 levels

      Global CO2 emission level have not decreased to pre-1991 levels.

      CO2 emission levels in the United States have decreased to pre-1991 levels.

      CO2 emission levels continue to increase world wide.

      China continues to build new coal plants–despite overcapacity.…..1464692337

      1. Ahh, it helps if I actually read the damn headline.

        So it really is all China’s fault…

      2. China, the world leader in CO2 emissions, emits twice as much CO2 as the US, although China’s 2016 numbers are apparently leveling off. India is also increasing its CO2 output. I think it’s awfully racist and ethnocentric for the US and EU to try to force other countries from growing their economy (the way we did for 200 years) by limiting their use of fossil fuels. If those growing economies choose to use less CO2 emitting energy sources, so be it, but that’s *their* choice.

        1. Moreover, the connection between industrial CO2 emissions and atmospheric CO2 concentration hasn’t been well established.

          It reminds me of the way “dietary science” worked for a long time; you have high blood cholesterol, stop eating cholesterol! Except the body produces cholesterol and the mechanism by which dietary cholesterol becomes blood cholesterol was never explored (in fact, there seems to be no direct link).

          We know* that CO2 levels were higher at certain times in the past than they are today. Yet there were no humans and no industrial emissions. Obviously there have to be other factors affecting atmospheric CO2 concetration. This is probably why you hear all of this talk about “dissolved CO2 in the ocean” but the problem is, no one seems really all that interested in understanding the factors that affect all of these variables. The hypothesis that “industrial CO2 emissions control all other variables” has not only not been well tested but instead has become dangerous dogma.

          * = If you accept tree rings, ice cores, and the like as representative.

      3. If you google that WSJ article, they’re saying that it’s basically a stimulus package for China.

        China worries today about unemployed and disaffected workers today like it used to obsess about famine. When the growth stops (or slows down), they CCP figures they’re all gonna end up hanging from telephone poles. So they’re building coal plants left and right as more or less a jobs program–even though they have problems with overcapacity in electricity production right now.

        When Obama doe that, he calls it “stimulus”.

        And then there’s this tidbit:

        “China already has more power-generating capacity than any other country. It is projected to add nearly 200 gigawatts worth of new thermal power capacity between 2015 and 2017, according to an analysis by Fitch Ratings Inc. That is more than the entire electrical capacity of Canada. While some capacity would be for natural gas, most will be coal-powered.”…..1464692337

        In the United States, where technology brought and market forces brought us low cost natural gas, our CO2 emissions are dropping. In China, where these decisions are made more by bureaucrats and less by markets, they’re building more coal plants that no one needs, and CO2 emissions continue to rise.

        1. China is still obsessed about famine, and rightly so.

          For all of their economic ‘advances’ much of their food production is still effectively pre-industrial. They are about one generation away from losing the ability to feed themselves. They were hoping to do a rapid industrialization of food production, but this is not working out as desired, and the move away from the one child policy is in direct response to this failure. Because if nobody is left to work down on the farm then the game is well and truly over.

          1. I think they face a two-edged sword. The “simple” answer is industrial food production, a la the U.S. and Western Europe. They could easily* make far more food than their own people could eat. But, they would put hundreds of millions of people out of work. They’re already facing issues with having more industrial capacity than demanded (besides just power plants). The solution that squares this circle is, of course, a free(er) market economy and strong protection of property rights. The domestic economy has to develop to the point that internal demand is the primary driver. But this would shift power away from the party elites, and would give the masses the ability and desire to overthrow them.

            * = Setting aside, for the moment, the difficulty of capital concentration and exploitation under an authoritarian quasi-communist state

          2. Very well.

            Point is that their decisions here are being driven more by political considerations rather than market considerations.

            1. Yes, it was not my intention to distract from that point. One both you and kbolino make very clearly.

    5. global still rising. USA is down.

      1. Yeah, I was wrong about that.

        (See Tony, that’s how you admit when you are wrong. It’s really not hard.)

  10. WE DID IT.


  11. I really forgot what H&R was like without the troll-blockers

  12. Dammit. Some of us are still hoping for fire hurricanes to end this shit show.


    What is the carbon footprint of a nuclear attack? No one seems to be paying any attention to Obama starting World War III in Syria. Every day this gets more insane. Missed in all of the mud wrestling of the second debate was Hillary saying she wanted to enforce a no fly zone over Syria. Do you people not understand that that would necessarily mean shooting down Russian planes and finally going toe to toe with the Ruskies? Hillary as much as said she plans to start World War III if elected. And no one seemed to care. Its like we have forgotten that yes wars do really happen or something.

    1. William Jefferson Clinton put no fly zones in Iraq and it led to peace and stability across the whole region. What part of most qualified to hold the office do you not get?

      1. I have never understood the point of now fly zones. Yeah, air power makes it easier to kill people but it is not the only way to kill people. Our no fly zones did nothing to save the Shia and Marsh Arabs from Saddam’s wrath. They helped out the Kurds but that was only because the Kurds had their own army. I don’t think Saddam would have taken Kurdistan even if he could have used air power.

        1. No fly zones are a way to exercise military force without committing to “boots on the ground” or whatever that means. It seems like a really dangerous game to me because as soon as the no fly zone is contested I would think you are now committed to war. It only works if no one can or will stand up to the no fly zone. That said “now fly zone” is pretty funny.

          1. It is a way of “doing something” without actually doing anything. It has all of the disadvantages of going to war without any of the advantages of actually winning or accomplishing anything. It is no wonder our current political class loves the things.

        2. The original “No Fly Zones” in the 1990s were supposed to deny air superiority to Baathist Iraq in the north and south — the original idea was that doing so would keep the Iraqi army out of those zones and allow the non-Baathist Iraqis (like the Kurds in the North) would be able to stand up autonomous defense forces and eventually topple the Baathist government. Which didn’t work. And so the idea of No Fly Zones is another failed strategy that we will continue to employ. Much like in Yemen, where we will continue to beat up on a minor power who has the misfortune to be next to a major power we want something from.

    2. You just hate her because she’s a woman!

      1. And so does Putin. The big meanie.

    3. Every time someone publicly supports a no-fly zone I cringe.

      You are right, it means shooting down Russian planes. No chance in hell Syria is worth doing that.

      1. I am not going to any war much less World War III over Syria. The whole thing is insane. There isn’t even any oil in Syria. And while Assaad is a bad guy, so what? Him and is idiot father have run Syria for over 50 years and the world and the US have somehow managed. And now it is worth risking nuclear war with Russia over what happens there? Our government has lost its mind.

        1. Best case is all this dick waving ends with the election, but Kerry is so bereft of feck that I can imagine him fucking up a done deal with Putin because he’s an idiot.

    4. Don’t forget that NATO has already shot down one Russki plane in this conflict.

      2015 Russian Sukhoi Su-24 shootdown

      The Russian plane was flying at the behest of and with full authorization of the sovereign government of Syria. Yet, for some reason, Russia is the evil aggressor, rather than al-Nusra, al-Qaeda, and ISIS.

  14. The mistake of the chart is to assume that whether these figures or higher or lower is significant of anything.

    Carbon dioxide, last i checked, is the least impactful “greenhouse gas” and has the weakest connection to any anthropmorphic impact; the share of human-produced emissions in the overall carbon-cycle is effectively meaningless, and thats even if you assume any of this Climate Change stuff matters.

    I think the reason people like to pretend it matters is because, unlike things like Methane or Halocarbons, is because it is easier to measure and because the sources are the symbolic-bugbears which Lefties love to hate.

    I mean, you dont see Greenpeace demonizing dairy farmers, or screeching about the gasses unleashed by wetlands. They make CO2 into their enemy not because it matters, but because it is convenient

    1. Don’t kid yourself, dairy farmers are very much on the list. Wetlands a bit further down.

      1. not publicly. Greenpeace, Sierra Club, et al won’t touch animal agriculture.

    2. I think the reason people like to pretend it matters is because they don’t know what they’re talking about but not knowing what they’re talking about doesn’t preclude them from having a strong opinion on the matter. Being seen as having a strong opinion on the matter is the whole purpose of having a strong opinion on the matter. I’d guess about 97.9% of the people talking about global warming couldn’t pass a test on the basics of science necessary to even understand the problem, let alone critique methods of addressing the problem. Heck, I’ve looked into it some and at a fairly low level it’s like a couple of paleoethnobotanists arguing over whether the Greek diphthong is ungulate or cantilevered. I have no idea what the hell they’re talking about, and I’d bet my life I know more science than the average random person on the internet.

      1. All I know is that the German Umlaut is very metal. The Hungarian umlaut less so.

    3. I think the reason people like to pretend it matters is because, unlike things like Methane or Halocarbons, is because it is easier to measure and because the sources are the symbolic-bugbears which Lefties love to hate.

      I think there is definitely some ardent statists behind the useful idiots as well. 90% of the movement would say ‘Do something about methane.’ the market would discover that, ‘Holy shit, if you guys will pay $0.10/BTU (or kWh) more for us to trap it, we’ll trap all of it.’ and that would be the end of it. But there’s a significant portion that *can’t* allow that.

      Well before fracking, some scientists even pointed out that focusing on methane and similar gases lowers the temperature/alleviates the burden short term and buys us time to find and implement more practical solutions. Apparently, nobody has any use for people who would simply kick the can down the road in that manner.

  15. (and line the pockets of their business allies)

    Because Team Blue doesn’t do this exact thing with “green” energy companies.

  16. The report mentions three areas that drove that important. Yes, fossil fuel mix, mild weather (the earth is warming, not a positive), and this which you left out:

    “Increasing renewable energy consumption. Consumption of renewable fuels that do not produce carbon dioxide increased 9% during the first six months of 2016 compared with the same period in 2015. Wind energy, which saw the largest electricity generating capacity additions of any fuel in 2015, accounted for nearly half the increase. Hydroelectric power, which has increased with the easing of drought conditions on the West Coast, accounted for 35% of the increase in consumption of renewable energy. Solar energy accounted for 13% of the increase and is expected to see the largest capacity additions of any fuel in 2016.”

    Note the largest capacity additions will be from solar.

    1. By the way, the real important story in regard to carbon this past month is that for the first time we passed the 400 ppm mark in the last week in September, which is typically the low point. Ralph Keeling, who is the Director of the Scripps CO2 Program at Scripps Inst. of Oceanograpghy, said this:

      “Brief excursions towards lower values are still possible but it already seems safe to conclude that we won’t be seeing a monthly value below 400 ppm this year ? or ever again for the indefinite future.”

      Because global warming is exactly that…a global phenomena…unless we can build a wall around the U.S. we can hardly pat ourselves on the back. Natural gas is still adding carbon to the atmosphere. It’s the renewable fuels that deserve the largest thank you.

    2. If an Icelander sends for his wife and two children, the Icelandic population in town goes up by 300%!

      That does not mean a city of 100,000 people is being overrun with Icelanders.

      If solar went up by 13%, that’s still a drop in the bucket.

      Solar made up .06% (six-tenths of one percent) of all electricity generation in the United States in 2015.

      If it went up by 13% in 2016 (and other proportions remained the same), then solar still only made up .0678% (6.78 tenths of one percent) of all electricity generation in 2016.

      In other words, it’s contribution is insignificant compared to other factors like consumers choosing more fuel efficient cars and utilities substituting and using inexpensive and abundant natural gas rather than coal.

      And why’s that natural gas so plentiful? Go ahead, you can admit it!

      1. You don’t solve the problem of too much man made carbon in the atmosphere by adding more man made carbon to the atmosphere.

        1. You don’t build support for major policy changes by advocating strategies that destroy people’s standard of living either.

          Hell, our “do nothing” strategy was so effective, we met our Kyoto commitments without even signing the treaty. If the progress America made by “doing nothing” is so inconsequential, then so were the goals of the Kyoto treaty.

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