A Few Things Ill Considered

This weekly posting is brought to you courtesy of H. E. Taylor. Happy reading, I hope you enjoy this week’s Global Warming news roundup


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Confronting a New Age of Consequences

April 13, 2014


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Here’s some bleak humour for ye:

Looking ahead to COP20 and future international climate negotiations:

Poking through the embers of previous negotiations:

The IPCC WG3 report Mitigation of Climate Change was released this Sunday morning:

Some initial WG3 commentary:

Before the release, WG3 leaks were popping up here and there:

Surprisingly little Post WG2 commentary:

This seems to be one of the more remarkable developments lately. I keep wondering “Where is the catch?”:

  • 2014/04/07: BBerg: Shell, Unilever Seek 1 Trillion-Ton Limit on CO2 Output
    Royal Dutch Shell Plc and Unilever NV joined 68 other companies in urging world governments to cap cumulative carbon emissions since the industrial revolution to 1 trillion metric tons to contain rising temperatures. The emissions cap is needed to stabilize the increase in temperatures since the 19th century to 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit), according to an e-mailed statement. That’s the level beyond which scientists say the rising seas, more intense storms and melting glaciers caused by global warming may become dangerous.

This won’t put an end to claims of natural variation, but if it is verified and replicated, it could be another arrow in the quiver:

How is the German Energy Transition [Energiewende] doing?

And on the Bottom Line:

Who’s getting the subsidies?

What’s the World Bank up to?

John Cook and friends continue their point-counterpoint articles:

A note on theFukushima disaster:

    It is evident that the Fukushima disaster is going to persist for some time. TEPCO says 6 to 9 months. The previous Japanese Prime Minister, Naoto Kan, said decades. Now the Japanese government is talking about 30 years. [Whoops, that has now been updated to 40 years.]
    And the IAEA is now saying 40 years too.
    [Now some people are talking about a century or more. Sealing it in concrete for 500 years.]
    We’ll see.
    At any rate this situation is not going to be resolved any time soon and deserves its own section.
    Meanwhile…
    It is very difficult to know for sure what is really going on at Fukushima. Between the company [TEPCO], the Japanese government, the Japanese regulator [NISA], the international monitor [IAEA], as well as independent analysts and commentators, there is a confusing mish-mash of information. One has to evaluate both the content and the source of propagated information.
    How knowledgeable are they [about nuclear power and about Japan]?
    Do they have an agenda?
    Are they pro-nuclear or anti-nuclear?
    Do they want to write a good news story?
    Do they want to write a bad news story?
    Where do they rate on a scale of sensationalism?
    Where do they rate on a scale of play-it-down-ness?
    One fundamental question I would like to see answered:
    If the reactors are in meltdown, how can they be in cold shutdown?

Not much good news coming out of Fukushima:

Post Fukushima, nuclear policies are in flux around the world:

The Arctic melt continues to garner attention:

As for the charismatic megafauna:

That Damoclean sword still hangs overhead:

As for the geopolitics of Arctic resources:

While in Antarctica:

The food crisis is ongoing:

The state of the world’s fisheries is a concern. See also, and:

Food Prices are still problematic:

Regarding the genetic modification of food:

Regarding labelling GM food:

And how are we going to feed 9 billion, 10 billion, 15 billion?

In the Western Pacific, Tropical Cyclone Ita is takinng aim at Queensland:

TD Peipah [05W] faded mercifully East of the Phillipines:

  • 2014/04/07: NASA: Tropical Cyclone Peipah [05W] Passes Palau, Philippines Prepare

    While elsewhere in the hurricane wars:

  • 2014/04/11: WaPo: Forecasters predict lackluster hurricane season thanks to El Niño forecast
  • 2014/04/11: GLaden: Atlantic Hurricane Season Prediction
  • 2014/04/10: NOAANews: WMO retires Ingrid and Manuel for Atlantic and eastern North Pacific basins — Both storms had deadly impacts on Mexico in 2013
  • 2014/04/08: FAO: FAO and Canada to help Philippine coconut farmers rehabilitate their livelihoods hit hard by Typhoon Haiyan
  • 2014/04/07: UN: Philippines’ debt must be cancelled to support typhoon recovery effort – UN expert

    This week in notable weather:

    As for GHGs:

    And in the carbon cycle:

    Aerosols are making their presence felt:

    Regarding Climate Sensitivity:

    As for ozone:

    And on the ENSO front:

    As for the temperature record:

    Meanwhile in near earth orbit:

    While in the paleoclimate:

    Dealing with uncertainties:

    What’s the State of the Oceans?:

    What’s new in Biodiversity?

    And on the extinction watch:

    The bees and Colony Collapse Disorder are a constant concern. And then, there are the Neonicotinoids:

    How are the Insect Orders doing?

    More GW impacts are being seen:

    And then there are the world’s forests:

    Climate refugees are becoming an issue:

    Desertification looms as a global threat:

    Emerging diseases accompany ecological change:

    On the tornado front:

    As for heatwaves and wild fires:

    Corals are a bellwether of the ocean’s health:

    Glaciers are melting:

    Sea levels are rising:

    As for hydrological cycle disruptions [floods & droughts]:

    First, stop putting GHGs into the atmosphere,
    Second, begin to reduce current levels of GHGs,
    Third, save as many species as possible,
    Fourth, begin to reduce the human population,
    And elsewhere on the mitigation front:

    Consider transportation & GHG production:

    While in the endless quest for zero energy, sustainable buildings and practical codes:

    Large scale geo-engineering keeps popping up:

    What’s new in conservation?

    While on the adaptation front:

    Meanwhile in the journals:

    And other significant documents:

    As for miscellaneous science:

    In the science organizations:

    What developments in the ongoing struggle for Open Science?

    Regarding Lovelock:

    Meanwhile at the UN:

    More talk about changing the IPCC process:

    The idea of a carbon tax is still bouncing around:

    On the international political front, tensions continue as the empire leans on Iran:

    South [& East] China Sea tension persists:

    In the widespread solar squabbles:

    These ‘free trade’ treaties should be called the corporate control treaties:

    Tension is building in the standoffs of Eastern Ukraine while the new cold/economic war percolates:

    It would be ironic if one result of the Ukraine confrontation was the loss of the petrodollar:

    As for miscellaneous international political happenings:

    What are the activists up to?

    Is the Climate Movement anything more than a fantasy?

    The move to divest from fossil fuel investments is growing slowly:

    Regarding Water Politics and Business; See also:

    While in the UK:

    And in Europe:

    Meanwhile in Australia:

    Now we get to watch the suppository of wisdom destroy what little Australia has done to fight climate change:

    The slightly farcical RET review plays on:

    After years of wrangling, the Murray Darling Basin Plan is in place, but the water management fights are far from finished:

    The Federal and now the State Liberals are bent on trashing the hard won Tasmanian forest deal:

    And in the Indian subcontinent:

    While in Japan:

    And elsewhere in Asia:

    And South America:

    In Canada, neocon PM Harper, aka The Blight, pushes petroleum while ignoring the climate and ecology:

    Greenpeace has asked Elections Canada to investigate links between the Conservative Party and Ethical Oil:

    Pipelines – Natural Gasand Liquids:

    The TransCanada West-East [aka Energy East] pipeline has passed the first stage:

    The battle over the Northern Gateway pipeline rages on:

    And the Kinder Morgan expansion:

    The task confronting the ELA team Harper almost destroyed:

    Apparently there is a process underway to choose a site to build a Deep Geologic Repository for nuclear waste:

    • 2014/04/10: CBC: Canada narrows list of possible locations for nuclear waste facility
      7 of 22 municipalities dropped from list of potential sites Canada is a step closer to picking a place to store spent nuclear fuel underground for the next 100,000 years, a project that’s backfired on some of the world’s other nuclear economies. Despite the stigma of radioactivity, 22 Canadian municipalities expressed interest in hosting such a facility. Four have now been moved up the list for further evaluation, while seven have been rejected as not suitable. The other 11 are still in the initial assessment phase. Final approval could take another couple of decades, but if a site is found and approval given to build a Deep Geologic Repository (DGR), the project will generate thousands of jobs, some lasting generations. Billions would be spent constructing a vast warehouse over 500 metres underground to contain some of the most radioactive waste in the world.

    What’s the state of the West Coast salmon fishery?

    • 2014/04/12: Tyee: Without Better Science, BC’s Herring Crisis Could Resurface
      Experts say there’s more to do to ensure future fights, like this year’s, end peacefully. A tense conflict between commercial fishermen and central coast First Nations near a northern British Columbian herring roe fishery has concluded peacefully. But while a crisis was averted this year, those involved say the main catalysts behind it — problems with the government’s management of fisheries — go unresolved. Last week, commercial fishermen caught the last of their allocated 750 tonnes of fish without entering aboriginal territory waters, where a group of First Nations waited, ready to disrupt fishing activity. The nations had pledged to protect herring stocks by any means necessary.

    Meanwhile in BC:

    Meanwhile in that Mechanical Mordor known as the tar sands:

    In Ontario:

    Well, Pauline Marois is now the ex-Premier. We have yet to see how Couillard will fare:

    And on the American political front:

    The Keystone XL wheel grinds slowly. And it grinds woe:

    Leaks and spills:

    In North Carolina, Duke Energy spilled coal ash slurry into the Dan River:

    Earlier in Michigan, Enbridge spilled dilbit into the Kalamazoo River:

    The BP disaster continues to twist US politics. See also:

    After the Galveston barge spill:

    In Wilmington, a Phillips 66 pipeline spewed crude oil on to streets:

    The NorthWest coal export debate remains heated:

    Public comments on the Alberta Clipper pipeline to the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission end Monday:

    And then there is the ANR Pipeline:

    Looking ahead to the 2014 & 2016 elections:

    The actions of the Obama administration are being watched closely:

    As for what is going on in Congress:

    What are the lobbyists pushing?

    • 2014/04/11: BBerg: Ukrainian Crisis Not Wasted by Washington Lobbyists
      A lot of Washington interest groups owe Russian President Vladimir Putin a big thank you. Putin’s annexation of Ukraine’s Crimea region last month is being cited in Washington as a reason to do everything from building an oil pipeline to accelerating private space flight and even boosting the export of liquefied natural gas. “This is truly classic behavior,” said Burdett Loomis, a political science professor at the University of Kansas who specializes in lobbying. “You can create a narrative that puts you on the side of the angels.”

    The movement toward a long term ecologically viable economics is glacial:

    In nature, there is no garbage:

    IPAT [Impact = Population * Affluence * Technology] raised its head once again:

    Apocalypso anyone?

    Another Day in the battle:

    Okay hot shot, how are we gonna fix this?

    How do the corporate media measure up?

    And for your film & video enjoyment:

    Meanwhile among the ‘Sue the Bastards!’ contingent:

    The Mann defamation suit saga rolls on:

    Developing a new energy infrastructure is a fundamental challenge of the current generation:

    What do you have in energy comparisons and transitions?

    What’s changing in energy investments?

    Hey! Let’s contaminate the aquifers for thousands of years! It’ll be a fracking gas!

    On the coal front:

    On the gas and oil front:

    In the gas and oil corps:

    And in pipeline news:

    Ships and boats and trains — How to tranport the stuff?

    Marvelous! Now the USA has their own Mechanical Mordor:

    • 2014/04/07: BBerg: A Landscape of Fire Rises Over North Dakota’s Gas Fields [US mordor]
      Towering flames atop oil wells break the inky darkness in the badlands on North Dakota’s Fort Berthold Indian Reservation. The flares of natural gas set grass fires on the prairie where Theodora Bird Bear’s ancestors hunted buffalo and create a driving hazard on rural roads. “At nighttime, clouds of gravel dust from semis are lit up with flaring lights,” said Bird Bear, 62, who can see flames shooting from a well behind land where she grows red beans, corn and squash. “It’s a hellish scene.”

    A rush of American triumphalism pervades the energy independence PR campaign. Think it will last?

    Biofuel bickering abounds:

    The answer my friend…

    Meanwhile among the solar aficionados:

    The nuclear energy controversy continues:

    Nuclear waste storage requires _very_ long term thinking:

    Nuclear fusion projects around the world limp along:

    Feed-In-Tariffs (Net Metering & Time-of-Use Tariffs) are being variously implemented around the world:

    Like a mirage, the dream of a Hydrogen Economy shimmers on the horizon:

    More people are talking about the electrical grid:

    How are the utilities adjusting (or not)?

    And then there is the matter of efficiency & conservation:

    Automakers & lawyers, engineers & activists argue over the future of the car:

    As for Energy Storage:

    The reaction of business to climate change will be critical:

    Insurance and re-insurance companies are feeling the heat:

    What do we have in (weekly) lists?

    Anything in pithy (or piffling) quotes this week?

    The carbon lobby are up to the usual:

    More on that forced retraction of the Recursive Fury paper:

  • 2014/04/13: STW: Clarifying a revisited retraction
  • 2014/04/11: RetractionWatch: “[W]e did not succeed:” Frontiers editor on handling of controversial retraction
  • 2014/04/10: CCP: 3rd editor resigns from Frontiers journals over retraction of Recursive Fury by Lewandowsky et al.
  • 2014/04/09: DeSmogBlog: Editors Resign From Frontiers Journal Over Retracted Paper That Upset Climate Science Deniers
  • 2014/04/09: BBrembs: Recursive fury: Resigning from Frontiers
  • 2014/04/09: GLaden: Björn Brembs Resigns Editorship At Frontiers Journal Over Recursive Fury Fiasco
  • 2014/04/09: CCP: Chief specialty editor resigns from Frontiers in wake of controversial retraction of Recursive Fury paper about climate science denial psychology
  • 2014/04/09: CCP: Ugo Bardi: Climate of intimidation: “Frontiers” blunder on “Recursive Fury”
  • 2014/04/09: STW: The analysis of speech
  • 2014/04/08: GLaden: Frontiers Editor Ugo Bardi Resigns Over Recursive Fury Botch Job
  • 2014/04/08: UBardi: Climate of intimidation: “Frontiers” big blunder on the “Recursive Fury” paper
  • 2014/04/08: P3: Ugo Bardi Resigns as Chief Topic Editor over Journal’s Conduct in Lewandowski et al Retraction
  • 2014/04/07: STW: Revisiting a Retraction
  • 2014/04/06: CCP: Stephan Lewandowsky: Revisiting a Retraction
  • 2014/04/06: ERabett: Da Lawyer!, Da Lawyers
  • 2014/04/06: GLaden: A Conspiracy And Dunces? Journal Frontiers Tosses Authors Under Bus

    As for climate miscellanea:

    And here are a couple of sites you may find interesting and/or useful:


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