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Brazil space institute director sacked in Amazon deforestation row | World news | The Guardian
Available on a government website, data from the Deter satellite showed an alarming rise in deforestation in recent months: it soared 88% in June compared with a year earlier.

Bolsonaro and has ministers have called its release irresponsible and an attempt to stain Brazil’s image abroad. Last month he called INPE numbers “lies” and implied that Galvão was in “the service” of a foreign non-profit group. The next day Galvão said the president behaved “like he is in a bar” and defended the institute’s data.

The most accurate data on deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon is collected by the Prodes satellite system and released annually. The Deter satellite system has a lower resolution and is primarily used for deforestation alerts, said Tasso Azevedo, a former head of Brazil’s forest service. But over the last 12 years, whenever annual Deter data showed deforestation increasing, Prodes confirmed the trend and calculated an even higher rate.
brazil  climatechange  agriculture  agroecology  forestry 
20 days ago by juliusbeezer
Train can be worse for climate than plane | New Scientist
A new study compares the “full life-cycle” emissions generated by 11 different modes of transportation in the US. Unlike previous studies on transport emissions, Mikhail Chester and Arpad Horvath of the University of California, Berkeley, looked beyond what is emitted by different types of car, train, bus or plane while their engines are running and includes emissions from building and maintaining the vehicles and their infrastructure, as well as generating the fuel to run them. (Table 1 on page 3 has a complete list of components that were considered).
transport  climatechange 
24 days ago by juliusbeezer
While the planet burns, Ohio's coal industry gets a bailout | Leah C Stokes | Opinion | The Guardian
These companies have spent several million dollars on deceptive advertising, lobbying and campaign contributions to help elect politicians sympathetic to their cause.

In return, these politicians have proven dutiful beneficiaries, working diligently to secure almost a billion dollars of ratepayer subsidies for FirstEnergy and AEP.

As lobbying goes, not a bad return on investment.

This isn’t just happening in Ohio. Utilities across the country are pushing to delay climate action and stall the growth of renewables, which are already a cheaper source of electricity than continuing to operate three-quarters of US coal plants.
climatechange  us  politics  fossil-fuel 
27 days ago by juliusbeezer
Twitter
RT : What did you know about when you worked as Chief Economist for Shell? Why did you oppose carbon emis…
ClimateChange 
may 2019 by juliusbeezer
Twitter
This article came out two months before I was born. We've known about human-caused for a long, long…
climatechange 
may 2019 by juliusbeezer
What Will You Say to Your Grandchildren? - EcoWatch
"likelihood" and "inevitability" stand a long way from each other. As Rebecca Solnit points out in Hope in the Dark, hope is not a prognostication. Taking either an optimistic or pessimistic stance on the future can justify a cop-out. An optimist says, "It will turn out fine so I don't need to do anything." A pessimist retorts, "Nothing I do will make a difference so let me not waste my time." Hope, by contrast, is not a matter of estimating the odds. Hope is an active state of mind, a recognition that change is nonlinear, unpredictable, and arises from intentional engagement.

Bendell responds to this version of hope with a comparison to a terminal cancer patient. It would be cruel, he suggests, to tell them to keep hoping, pushing them to "spend their last days in struggle and denial, rather than discovering what might matter after acceptance." This is a false equivalency. A terminal cancer condition has a statistical history, derived from the outcomes of many thousands of similar occurrences. Our current situation is unique. There is no history available of thousands of global civilizations bringing their planetary ecosystems to breaking point. This is the only one we know of, and it would be negligent to give up on it based on a set of projections. If a doctor told your mother, "This cancer is unique and we have no experience of its prognosis. There are things we can try but they might not work," would you advise her to give up and prepare for death? I'm not giving up on Mother Earth that easily.
climatechange  politics  psychology  medicine 
may 2019 by juliusbeezer
The Best Technology for Fighting Climate Change Isn't a Technology - Scientific American Blog Network
Yet the international focus on fossil fuels has overshadowed the most powerful and cost-efficient carbon-capture technology the world has yet seen: forests. Recent scientific research confirms that forests and other “natural climate solutions” are absolutely essential in mitigating climate change, thanks to their carbon sequestering and storage capabilities. In fact, natural climate solutions can help us achieve 37 percent of our climate target, even though they currently receive only 2.5 percent of public climate financing.

Forests’ power to store carbon dioxide through the simple process of tree growth is staggering: one tree can store an average of about 48 pounds of carbon dioxide in one year. Recent research shows intact forests are capable of storing the equivalent of the carbon dioxide emissions of entire countries such as Peru and Colombia.
agroecology  climatechange 
february 2019 by juliusbeezer
'I feel very angry': the 13-year-old on school strike for climate action | Environment | The Guardian
Holly was inspired by the actions of Greta Thunberg, who in September sat outside the Swedish parliament for three weeks on “school strike”. International interest in her story led to Thunberg going to Davos last month to address world leaders. While she travelled for 32 hours on trains to reach the ski resort, political and business leaders hired 1,500 private jets to get to the summit.
transport  climatechange  politics 
february 2019 by juliusbeezer
37 things you need to know about the new IPCC report
21. Estimates of the carbon budget vary depending on which measure of warming you use. If you are going by the average temperature over land, it is 420Gt CO2 to give a 66% chance of staying below 1.5C. If you factor in sea surface temperatures, which are rising more slowly, it’s 570Gt. Either way, we are using up the budget at a rate of 42Gt a year.
climatechange 
january 2019 by juliusbeezer
Immediate fossil fuel phaseout could arrest climate change – study | Environment | The Guardian
The study found that if all fossil fuel infrastructure – power plants, factories, vehicles, ships and planes – from now on are replaced by zero-carbon alternatives at the end of their useful lives, there is a 64% chance of staying under 1.5C.

In October, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change said the difference between 1.5C of warming and the earlier international target of 2C was a significantly lower risk of drought, floods, heatwaves and poverty for hundreds of millions of people.

Christopher Smith, of the University of Leeds, who led the research, said: “It’s good news from a geophysical point of view. But on the other side of the coin, the [immediate fossil fuel phaseout] is really at the limit of what we could we possibly do. We are basically saying we can’t build anything now that emits fossil fuels.”
climatechange 
january 2019 by juliusbeezer
Greenhouse Gas Emissions Accelerate Like a ‘Speeding Freight Train’ in 2018 - The New York Times
Greenhouse gas emissions worldwide are growing at an accelerating pace this year, researchers said Wednesday, putting the world on track to face some of the most severe consequences of global warming sooner than expected.

Scientists described the quickening rate of carbon dioxide emissions in stark terms, comparing it to a “speeding freight train” and laying part of the blame on an unexpected surge in the appetite for oil as people around the world not only buy more cars but also drive them farther than in the past — more than offsetting any gains from the spread of electric vehicles.

“We’ve seen oil use go up five years in a row,” said Rob Jackson, a professor of earth system science at Stanford and an author of one of two studies published Wednesday. “That’s really surprising.”
climatechange  china 
january 2019 by juliusbeezer
Climate Change First Became News 30 Years Ago. Why Haven’t We Fixed It?
Can we name the main culprits? There are almost as many theories and targets as there are advocates of one stripe or another. Among them: lack of basic research funding (I was often in that camp), industry influence on politics, poor media coverage, and doubt-sowing by those invested in fossil fuels or opposed to government intervention. There’s also our “inconvenient mind”—my description for a host of human behavioral traits and social norms that cut against getting climate change right.

For years I thought the answer was like the conclusion in Agatha Christie’s Murder on the Orient Express: that all suspects were guilty. But there’s another possibility. Maybe climate change is less an environmental wrong to be set right and more an emerging source of risk—a case of humanity’s planet-scale power outrunning, at least for now, our capacity for containing our momentous impacts. In a 2009 piece called “Puberty on the Scale of a Planet,” I toyed with this notion, suggesting that our species was in a turbulent transition from adolescence to adulthood, resisting admonitions to grow up—with fossil fuels standing in for testosterone.

But the situation is even more tangled. The more I reported in unlit Kenyan slums and Indian villages where people cook on illicit charcoal or hand-gathered twigs, the clearer it became that there’s no single “we” when it comes to energy, nor for vulnerability to climate hazards. The rich “we” can afford to convert to clean energy and cut vulnerability to heat, floods, and more. But the rest of humanity is still struggling to get the basic economic benefits that we’ve gotten from burning fossil fuels.
climatechange  politics  agnotology 
december 2018 by juliusbeezer
Portrait of a planet on the verge of climate catastrophe | Environment | The Guardian
For 24 years the annual UN climate conference has served up a reliable diet of rhetoric, backroom talks and dramatic last-minute deals aimed at halting global warming.

But this year’s will be a grimmer affair – by far. As recent reports have made clear, the world may no longer be hovering at the edge of destruction but has probably staggered beyond a crucial point of no return. Climate catastrophe is now looking inevitable. We have simply left it too late to hold rising global temperatures to under 1.5C and so prevent a future of drowned coasts, ruined coral reefs, spreading deserts and melted glaciers.

One example was provided last week by a UN report that revealed attempts to ensure fossil fuel emissions peak by 2020 will fail. Indeed the target will not even be reached by 2030.
climatechange  news 
december 2018 by juliusbeezer
Brazil records worst annual deforestation for a decade | Environment | The Guardian
Brazil has released its worst annual deforestation figures in a decade amid fears that the situation might worsen when the avowedly anti-environmentalist president-elect Jair Bolsonaro takes power.

Between August 2017 and July 2018, 7,900sq kms were deforested, according to preliminary figures from the environment ministry based on satellite monitoring – a 13.7% rise on the previous year and the biggest area of forest cleared since 2008. The area is equivalent to 987,000 football pitches.
agriculture  brazil  climatechange 
november 2018 by juliusbeezer
Matthew and Sarah Elliott: How a UK Power Couple Links US Libertarians and Fossil Fuel Lobbyists to Brexit | DeSmog UK
At the heart of this network lies a little-known power couple, Matthew and Sarah Elliott. Together, the husband and wife team connect senior members of the Leave campaign and groups pushing a libertarian free-market ideology from offices in Westminster’s Tufton Street to major US libertarian lobbyists and funders.

Collectively, the network aims to use Brexit as an opportunity to slash regulations in the UK, paving the way for a wide-ranging US-UK free-trade deal that could have disastrous consequences for the environment.

The current draft withdrawal agreement appears to try and provide some protection for the current level of environmental regulation — at least in principle. But politicians associated with this transatlantic network are lobbying hard for the draft deal to be scrapped, along with those protections.

This DeSmog UK investigation reveals the strength of the ties between Matthew and Sarah Elliott, UK lobbyists and politicians, and US groups with vested interests in fossil fuels keen to profit from deregulation.

It shows how organisations with strong ties to the Koch Brothers and Robert Mercer increased their political activities in the UK immediately before and after the Brexit referendum.
agnotology  politics  uk  us  climatechange 
november 2018 by juliusbeezer
The Earth is in a death spiral. It will take radical action to save us | George Monbiot | Opinion | The Guardian
The problem is political. A fascinating analysis by the social science professor Kevin MacKay contends that oligarchy has been a more fundamental cause of the collapse of civilisations than social complexity or energy demand. Control by oligarchs, he argues, thwarts rational decision-making, because the short-term interests of the elite are radically different to the long-term interests of society. This explains why past civilisations have collapsed “despite possessing the cultural and technological know-how needed to resolve their crises”. Economic elites, which benefit from social dysfunction, block the necessary solutions.
economics  climatechange  politics 
november 2018 by juliusbeezer
Judicial Office Launches Investigation into Complaint over Fracking Judge with Alleged Oil and Gas Ties | DeSmog UK
An investigation has been launched into allegations the judge who handed three fracking protesters “manifestly excessive” jail sentences has family ties to the oil and gas industry.

Judge Robert Altham sentenced Simon Blevins, Richard Roberts and Richard Loizou to up to 16 months in prison after they were convicted by a jury of causing a public nuisance offence. The protesters had their sentences quashed in an appeal case last week.

Under the Judicial Code of Conduct, judges are expected to disclose personal relationships, social contacts and activities that could cause a bias or a conflict of interest and which put their impartiality into question.

In a statement, the Judicial Conduct Investigations Office (JCIO), an independent body which deals with judicial complaints of misconduct, has confirmed receiving a complaint regarding Judge Robert Altham and added that it will be considered in accordance with the Judicial Conduct Rules.
law  uk  energy  climatechange 
october 2018 by juliusbeezer
IPCC - SR15
Must cut CO2 by 45% by 2030 to keep within 1.5C target
climatechange 
october 2018 by juliusbeezer
Sources of Greenhouse Gas Emissions | Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Emissions | US EPA
Transportation (nearly 28.5 percent of 2016 greenhouse gas emissions) – The transportation sector generates the largest share of greenhouse gas emissions. Greenhouse gas emissions from transportation primarily come from burning fossil fuel for our cars, trucks, ships, trains, and planes. Over 90 percent of the fuel used for transportation is petroleum based, which includes gasoline and diesel.2
transport  climatechange  environment  fossil-fuel 
august 2018 by juliusbeezer
Domino-effect of climate events could move Earth into a ‘hothouse’ state | Environment | The Guardian
The authors of the essay, published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, stress their analysis is not conclusive, but warn the Paris commitment to keep warming at 2C above pre-industrial levels may not be enough to “park” the planet’s climate at a stable temperature.

They warn that the hothouse trajectory “would almost certainly flood deltaic environments, increase the risk of damage from coastal storms, and eliminate coral reefs (and all of the benefits that they provide for societies) by the end of this century or earlier.”

Johan Rockström, executive ​director, Stockholm Resilience Centre

“I do hope we are wrong, but as scientists we have a responsibility to explore whether this is real,”
climatechange 
august 2018 by juliusbeezer
Our scorched Earth needs voters to put more heat on their politicians | Andrew Rawnsley | Opinion | The Guardian
This is progress. It is not sufficient progress, but it does demonstrate that there are things that can be done to mitigate climate change and there are smarter responses to this threat than burying your overheated head in your sweaty hands...
The international picture has deteriorated. Global warming has been crowded out as a subject energising international leadership and the push to tackle the danger has lost momentum. The Paris climate agreement signed in 2016 was supposed to commit more than 170 countries to measures to hold the increase in the global average temperature to “well below” 2C above pre-industrial levels. What it lacks is any mechanism for holding the signatories to their promises and not one of the major industrialised nations has published a full and plausible strategy for meeting their targets. A growing number of the scientists of climate change fear that global warming is going to be in excess of 2C. Donald Trump, who dismisses climate change as a hoax made up by the Chinese to hurt US industry, has ripped up the commitments made by his predecessor. American withdrawal is a double disaster.
climatechange  politics  us  uk 
july 2018 by juliusbeezer
Antarctic ice melting faster than ever, studies show | Environment | The Guardian
A separate study warns that unless urgent action is taken in the next decade the melting ice could contribute more than 25cm to a total global sea level rise of more than a metre by 2070. This could lead eventually to the collapse of the entire west Antarctic ice sheet, and around 3.5m of sea-level rise...
The study, published in Nature, involved 84 scientists from 44 international organisations and claims to be the most comprehensive account of the Antarctic ice sheet to date. It shows that before 2012, the Antarctic lost ice at a steady rate of 76bn tonnes per year - a 0.2mm per year contribution to sea-level rise. However since then there has been a sharp increase, resulting in the loss of 219bn tonnes of ice per year - a 0.6mm per year sea-level contribution.
climatechange 
june 2018 by juliusbeezer
Guest post: Seven key things to know about ‘negative emissions’
negative emissions technologies (NETs) are fundamentally different from solar radiation management (SRM), the other set of technologies typically considered “geoengineering”.

While NETs address the root cause of climate change by reducing atmospheric CO2 concentrations in the atmosphere, SRM approaches do not. Instead, they aim to reduce some of the worst impacts of climate change temporarily by reflecting incoming solar radiation.
climatechange 
june 2018 by juliusbeezer
Secret UK push to weaken EU climate laws 'completely mad' | Environment | The Guardian
Benedek Jávor, the vice chair of the European parliament’s environment committee, told the Guardian: “The UK’s proposal to widen ‘flexibilities’ is completely mad and undermines the principle of additionality, as well as the overall ambition of the energy efficiency directive.”

“This approach would risk failure in our efforts to reach even moderately ambitious overall targets, while the higher – and beneficial targets – that we need to strive for could become lost altogether.”...

The EU’s climate goals for 2020 are a staging post to its more ambitious promise to the Paris conference of a 40% emissions cut by 2030.

Europe is expected to easily achieve this, although its CO2 emissions appear to be rising as economic activity picks up, while energy efficiency gains have gone into reverse.

Eurostat figures released last week showed a 1.8% rise in CO2 emissions from fossil fuel use in 2017 after a 0.4% fall the year before. Surprisingly though, the UK was the only EU country to reduce its electricity consumption in 2017.
climatechange  energy  politics  eu  uk 
may 2018 by juliusbeezer
Comment: Now is the time to tackle shipping emissions | DeSmog UK
At sea, ships burn “heavy fuel oil,” a sludgy residue of the oil refining process that contains 3,500 times more sulphur than road diesel (in Europe and the US).

Many of the world’s main shipping routes hug the coastlines of developing countries in Africa and Asia, meaning that fumes from passing ships are responsible for around 14 million childhood asthma cases and 400,000 premature adult deaths each year. The consequences of particulate matter pollution for brain development and learning are only beginning to be understood, but the early studies are worrying.

And ships are responsible for massive carbon emissions. If shipping was treated as a country it would be the 6th largest emitter in the world, next to Germany. But unlike Germany (and most other countries), it has no plan in place for how to reduce its emissions. Like aviation, some last-minute haggling meant shipping emissions were not mentioned in the Paris Agreement.
climatechange  marine 
march 2018 by juliusbeezer
Pourquoi les agriculteurs n'arrivent pas à réduire leurs émissions de GES
Responsable de 20% des émissions de gaz à effet de serre, l'agriculture fait partie de l'équation de la lutte contre le changement climatique. Mais les derniers résultats de la stratégie bas-carbone française ne sont pas reluisants : en 2016, le secteur affiche un dépassement de 
3% par rapport à l'objectif annuel d'émissions de CO2. Pourtant les solutions sont connues : optimisation de la fertilisation azotée, réduction des consommations d'énergie des bâtiments d'élevage, introduction de légumineuses dans les rotations, développement de l'agroforesterie, recours à la méthanisation, etc. Certaines de ces actions ont même un intérêt supplémentaire : elles améliorent la situation économique des exploitations. C'est le cas de la méthanisation par exemple. Selon la dernière étude de l'Ademe en la matière, les énergies renouvelables permettent aux agriculteurs de diversifier leurs revenus pour des montants allant de quelques milliers d'euros de réduction de leur facture énergétique à plus de 15.000 euros de revenus supplémentaires par an.
agriculture  france  energy  climatechange  GES  Methanisation 
march 2018 by juliusbeezer
Climat : la hausse de la température moyenne de la Terre pourrait flirter avec 1,5°C d'ici à 2022
Une sérieuse alerte sur le réchauffement climatique vient d'être lancée par le Met Office, le service de météorologie britannique. Pour le professeur Stephen Belcher, directeur scientifique de cette institution qui compte 500 chercheurs, «compte tenu de ce que nous avons noté ces trois dernières années sur la température globale moyenne, environ 1°C au-dessus des niveaux préindustriels, il est maintenant possible que le réchauffement provoqué par les gaz à effet de serre associé à la variabilité du climat puisse conduire à une hausse temporaire supérieure à 1,5°C dans les cinq prochaines années». Autrement dit, l'objectif le plus ambitieux de l'accord de Paris sur le climat, limiter l'augmentation de la température à 1,5°C, adopté en décembre 2015, pourrait être bientôt dépassé. C'est la première fois qu'une prévision aussi pessimiste sur le climat, à court terme, est réalisée par l'un des instituts les plus réputés au monde.
climatechange 
february 2018 by juliusbeezer
Veridium Review - TGR ICO Natural Capital Tokens Environment FinTech?
Veridium is an alternative trading and digital asset issuance network based on Ethereum. The goal of the platform is to provide a digital token for natural capital commodities and “EcoSmart-Commodities” (a term Veridium has trademarked). Some of the examples of things you can digitize with Veridium include carbon neutral or environmentally neutral commodities.

The first digital token, or Natural Capital asset, released by Veridium is called the TGR. Each TGR is backed by Triple Gold REDD+ credits, which are considered the world’s highest quality environmental credits.

REDD+ credits deliver compound environmental and social returns, forest and biodiversity conservation, carbon emissions, savings and reductions, and a positive social impact for forest-dependent indigenous communities.

TGRs create a common denominator that can easily integrate environmental mitigation credits into commodities transactions with far greater efficiency than anything available today. The TGR is described as a “cryptographic natural capital asset token”. You can trade tokens on the Veridium network. The Veridium network itself is a blockchain-based platform designed to provide open and transparent trading for the pricing of natural capital.
finance  environment  bitcoin  climatechange 
february 2018 by juliusbeezer
Après celle du climat, l’industrie et ses lobbyistes s’attaquent à la science de la pollution de l’air - Observatoire des multinationales
Après le climato-scepticisme, le dieselo-scepticisme ? « L’air moderne est un petit peu trop propre pour une santé optimale » ; « on ne peut pas faire de lien entre décès prématurés et ozone » ; « [si la pollution de l’air tue,] où sont les corps ? » ; « les experts ne sont pas d’accord entre eux quant à la réalité de l’impact sanitaire des particules fines » ; « la qualité de l’air n’a jamais été aussi bonne qu’aujourd’hui »… Telles sont quelques-unes des phrases que l’on a pu récemment glaner, de divers côtés, dans les médias ou les réseaux sociaux en France, aux États-Unis et ailleurs. Alors que des voix de plus en plus nombreuses s’élèvent pour dénoncer l’impact sanitaire de la pollution de l’air, et les dizaines de milliers de décès prématurés qu’elle provoque chaque année en France et dans le monde, certains font de la résistance.

Ce « déni de la pollution de l’air » se manifeste aussi sous une autre forme, dans certaines études « scientifiques » financées par des constructeurs automobiles. Le New York Times a raconté il y a quelques jours comment une officine crée par Volkswagen avait payé des chercheurs pour faire respirer des vapeurs de diesel à un groupe de singes, dans le but de prouver leur innocuité.
agnotology  pollution  airpollution  climatechange  tobacco  français  india  us  france  germany  oil 
january 2018 by juliusbeezer
Q&A: How do climate models work? | Carbon Brief
Because of the complexity of the climate system and limitation of computing power, a model cannot possibly calculate all of these processes for every cubic metre of the climate system. Instead, a climate model divides up the Earth into a series of boxes or “grid cells”. A global model can have dozens of layers across the height and depth of the atmosphere and oceans.
climatechange  climate  science 
january 2018 by juliusbeezer
Some of the most interesting, least-covered climate-related stories of 2017
Even if EVs are still a relatively small part of the fleet in say, 10 years, that’s still a problem — because they are where the growth is at. This is a great quote explaining why the “energy systems are slow to change” axiom isn’t cause for complacence:

Systemic change is indeed slow, but marginal change can be extremely rapid. And it is marginal change that matters for companies and financial markets.

This piece struck me just because it explored a fact that is often unsaid: Changes at the margin — and therefore, the direction of travel — matter a lot. Because that’s where finance goes.
climatechange  finance  business 
january 2018 by juliusbeezer
Vehicles are now America's biggest CO2 source but EPA is tearing up regulations | Environment | The Guardian
For the first time in more than 40 years, the largest source of greenhouse gas pollution in the US isn’t electricity production but transport – cars, trucks, planes, trains and shipping...

Emissions data has placed transport as the new king of climate-warming pollution at a time when the Trump administration is reviewing or tearing up regulations that would set tougher emissions standards for car and truck companies. Republicans in Congress are also pushing new fuel economy rules they say will lower costs for American drivers but could also weaken emissions standards.
climatechange  transport 
january 2018 by juliusbeezer
The impact of parenthood on environmental attitudes and behaviour: a longitudinal investigation of the legacy hypothesis | SpringerLink
This paper explored whether having children leads to changes in individual-level environmental attitudes and behaviours, possibly as an effect of having greater consideration for future generations (the ‘legacy hypothesis’). Using the Understanding Society Survey, changes in three environmental attitude items and the frequency of 11 environmental behaviours were assessed for those who had children in between two waves of data collection. We examined four groups of people: those who had at least one new child (irrespective of whether this was a firstborn or not), those who became a parent for the first time, first-time parents with high environmental concern and first-time mothers. Our analysis showed only small changes in individual-level environmental attitudes and behaviours following people having a new child. In contrast with expectations from the legacy hypothesis, all changes were negative, indicating the environmental behaviours were performed less often. The only observed positive change was an increase in the desire to act more sustainably amongst first-time parents who already had a high level of environmental concern. Overall, the results do not provide support for the legacy hypothesis. Where there are any changes, these are more likely to be negative, suggesting that having a child reduces self-reported environmental behaviours.
climatechange  psychology  parents  children  research 
december 2017 by juliusbeezer
'No shame': how the Trump administration granted big oil's wishlist | Business | The Guardian
in a “wishlist” drawn up by the American Petroleum Institute (API), the leading lobby group for US oil and gas companies.

In a document called “comments on specific regulations” sent to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in May, API highlighted eight key changes it wanted to ease the regulation of air and water pollution. An analysis shows that the EPA has now so far either partially or wholly delivered on six out of these eight key demands within the first year of the Trump administration, which solicited input on government rules from a number of trade groups.
energy  us  politics  climatechange  environment 
december 2017 by juliusbeezer
‘Death spiral’: half of Europe’s coal plants are losing money | Environment | The Guardian
Carbon Tracker analysed the revenues and operating costs of all the EU’s coal plants and found 54% are already loss making today. All coal power must be phased out if the EU is to meet the goals of the global Paris climate change agreement, but the current business plans of the utilities would see just a quarter of plants closed.

The new report estimates that closing all the plants by 2030 will avoid losses of €22bn for the plant’s owners, either shareholders or governments. Germany hosts the largest number of unprofitable coal plants and the losses avoided by early closure there total €12bn, with both RWE and Uniper highly exposed. Plans put forward to close German plants have been delayed by the failure of talks to form a new coalition government.

“The changing economics of renewables, as well as air pollution policy and rising carbon prices, has put EU coal power in a death spiral,” said Matt Gray, co-author of the Carbon Tracker report. “Utilities can’t do much to stop this other than drop coal or lobby governments and hope they will bail them out.”
energy  climatechange  fossil-fuel  renewables 
december 2017 by juliusbeezer
Bill McKibben: Winning Slowly Is the Same as Losing - Rolling Stone
But climate change, sadly, isn't a classic contest between two groups of people. It's a negotiation between people on the one hand and physics on the other. And physics doesn't do compromise. Precisely because we've waited so long to take any significant action, physics now demands we move much faster than we want to. Political realism and what you might call "reality realism" are in stark opposition. That's our dilemma.
You could draw it on a graph. The planet's greenhouse-gas emissions are still rising, though more slowly – let's say we manage to top out by 2020. In that case, to meet the planet's goal of holding temperature increases under two degrees Celsius, we have to cut emissions 4.6 percent annually till they go to zero. If we wait till 2025, we have to cut them seven percent annually. If we wait till 2030 – well, it's not even worth putting on the chart. I have to sometimes restrain myself from pointing out how easy it would have been if we'd acted back in the late 1980s, when I was first writing about this – a gradual half a percent a year...
Even much of the money is in place. For $50,000 in insulation, panels and appliances, Mosaic, the biggest solar lender in the country, can make a home run on 100 percent clean energy. "And we can make a zero-down loan, where people save money from Day One," says the company's CEO, Billy Parrish. Mosaic raised $300 million for its last round of bond financing, but it was nearly six times oversubscribed – that is, investors were ready to pony up about $1.8 billion.
climatechange  politics  business  finance 
december 2017 by juliusbeezer
Natural gas emissions will blow Europe's carbon budget at current levels | Environment | The Guardian
Governments have drastically underestimated methane emissions from natural gas and will miss the Paris agreement’s goal of limiting global warming to 2C unless they urgently scale down its use, a major new study has found.

Continuing natural gas emissions at present levels will add 0.6C to global warming and, with other fossil fuel use, exhaust Europe’s carbon budget – the amount it can safely and fairly emit – in less than a decade, says the report by the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research.

It concludes that Europe must phase out all fossil fuels including gas by 2035 and decrease emissions by 12% per year – far beyond its current ambitions – to keep to the Paris 2C pledge.

EU countries, including the UK, have committed to burn more natural gas as a “bridging fuel”, because it offers a baseline alternative to wind and solar on cloudy and windless days, and because it emits less carbon dioxide than coal.

But the report’s authors find that there is “categorically no role” for new gas, oil or coal production, because of their high CO2 and methane emissions.
climatechange  energy  fossil-fuel 
november 2017 by juliusbeezer
One Bitcoin Transaction Now Uses as Much Energy as Your House in a Week - Motherboard
That problem is carbon emissions. De Vries has come up with some estimates by diving into data made available on a coal-powered Bitcoin mine in Mongolia. He concluded that this single mine is responsible for 8,000 to 13,000 kg CO2 emissions per Bitcoin it mines, and 24,000 - 40,000 kg of CO2 per hour.

As Twitter user Matthias Bartosik noted in some similar estimates, the average European car emits 0.1181 kg of CO2 per kilometer driven. So for every hour the Mongolian Bitcoin mine operates, it's responsible for (at least) the CO2 equivalent of over 203,000 car kilometers travelled.

As goes the Bitcoin price, so goes its electricity consumption, and therefore its overall carbon emissions. I asked de Vries whether it was possible for Bitcoin to scale its way out of this problem.
climatechange  energy  bitcoin  blockchain  environment 
november 2017 by juliusbeezer
Hurricane Ophelia Hit Ireland Days After Minister Lobbied to Weaken Climate Commitments | DeSmog UK
Ireland is already among the laggards of Europe, being one of only five EU states which is certain to fail to meet its 2020 emissions targets. Unusually, however, Irish transport and agriculture emissions are actually rising sharply, thanks to government policy supporting a rapid expansion of its dairy herd, as well as major ongoing investment in a car-dependent transport infrastructure that has exacerbated urban sprawl.
ireland  climatechange  politics 
october 2017 by juliusbeezer
Eating less meat essential to curb climate change, says report | Environment | The Guardian
Emissions from livestock, largely from burping cows and sheep and their manure, currently make up almost 15% of global emissions. Beef and dairy alone make up 65% of all livestock emissions.

Appetite for meat is rocketing as the global population swells and becomes more able to afford meat. Meat consumption is on track to rise 75% by 2050, and dairy 65%, compared with 40% for cereals. By 2020, China alone is expected to be eating 20m tonnes more of meat and dairy a year.

Two recent peer-reviewed studies calculated that, without severe cuts in this trend, agricultural emissions will take up the entire world’s carbon budget by 2050, with livestock a major contributor. This would mean every other sector, including energy, industry and transport, would have to be zero carbon, which is described as “impossible”. The Chatham House report concludes: “Dietary change is essential if global warming is not to exceed 2C.”
food  agriculture  climatechange 
october 2017 by juliusbeezer
UN Shipping Climate Talks ‘Captured’ by Industry | DeSmog UK
Shipping has a carbon footprint roughly the size of Germany. Without intervention, the IMO’s own research predicts that to grow 50-250 percent by 2050.

The latest available data, published by the International Council on Clean Transportation last week, showed emissions increasing 2.4 percent between 2013 and 2015. Fuel efficiency improved for many ship classes over the period, but the gains were outweighed by increased demand.
climatechange  pollution  marine  transport 
october 2017 by juliusbeezer
The GOP wants to repeal Obama's climate plan. Like health care, it's going to be a fiasco. - Vox
In 2007, the Supreme Court ruled, in Massachusetts v. EPA, that carbon dioxide qualifies as an air pollutant under the Clean Air Act. If the EPA determines that carbon is a danger to public health, the court said, it must regulate carbon to reduce that danger.

In 2009, the EPA issued its Endangerment Finding, demonstrating (based on intensive research and documentation) that greenhouse gases are in fact a danger to public health.

The Supreme Court ruling plus the Endangerment Finding mean that the EPA is legally obligated to regulate carbon in such a way as to meliorate the danger it poses to public health.

The only way EPA can escape that core legal obligation is to overturn the Endangerment Finding. Some conservative denialist groups, recognizing that fact, are pressuring Pruitt to attempt just that. Doing so, however, would likely prove impossible. It would have to pass legal review, and the simple fact is that the science overwhelmingly supports the EPA’s case.
climatechange  us 
october 2017 by juliusbeezer
1.5 Climate Action Plan - Mayor's Office of Sustainability
In 2014, the City of New York (the City) committed to reducing its GHG emissions 80 percent by 2050, compared to 2005 levels (80 x 50). The City's 2016 report, New York City's Roadmap to 80 x 50, used the best available science and state-of the-art analysis to identify strategies in the buildings, energy, waste, and transportation sectors that would achieve 80 x 50 based on current technology.

NYC's progress toward 80 x 50 continues: our air is cleaner, our energy is greener, and we are sending less waste to landfills. Meeting the global carbon budget to keep global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius requires that the City implement a priority subset of its 80 x 50 strategies by 2020 in order to accelerate GHG reductions. This plan clearly lays out the pace, scale, and impact of actions across the built environment that are necessary to bring NYC's actions in line with the Paris Agreement's 1.5 degree Celsius outcome - and commits the City to lead in the development of a global protocol for carbon neutrality.
climatechange  politics  us 
october 2017 by juliusbeezer
Guest post: Authors respond to misinterpretations of their 1.5C carbon budget paper | Carbon Brief
We estimated the remaining “carbon budget” – the amount of CO2 that could be released from 2015 onwards – consistent with meeting the most ambitious part of the Paris Agreement long-term temperature goal, namely “pursuing efforts to limit global warming to 1.5C above pre-industrial levels”.
What were the conclusions?

That the carbon budget “likely” (see note 1, below) to be consistent with 1.5C of human-induced warming is about 200-240 gigatonnes of carbon (GtC, or 730-880GtCO2) from the beginning of 2015, depending on how rapidly we cut back on non-CO2 contributions to global warming. Here, we interpreted 1.5C as being 0.6C of warming above the present decade (2010-2019), using an estimate of human-induced (“attributable anthropogenic”) warming (note 2) by 2015 of 0.93C above mid-19th century values (see discussion below on our choices of reference periods and datasets). This carbon budget represents around 20 years of present CO2 emission levels, equivalent to reducing emissions in a straight line to zero by 2055.
climatechange  energy 
september 2017 by juliusbeezer
Stop Worrying About Climate Deniers – We Won’t Escape Extreme Warming Unless we Deal with Climate Apathy | DeSmog UK
We should stop talking so much about climate denial. That might seem a surprising message from the author of a book on public opinion about climate change, but I’m convinced it’s the right answer for those of us who want more action to cut emissions.

Look at the news and climate denial seems to be everywhere. It’s common in the media, as Newsweek readers and UK radio listeners have recently been reminded, while its grip on the White House seems stronger than ever.

But among the public, denial is quite rare. As I show in my book, The Climate Majority, in comparison with the proportion that think climate change won’t be a threat, Americans are more likely to think 9/11 was a US government plot, more Brits think Princess Diana was assassinated, not killed accidentally, and Canadians are more likely to say Bigfoot is real. Those are fringe conspiracy theories, and it’s right they’re treated as such.

And yet we still get distracted by climate denial, when our real target should be climate apathy. Many people, perhaps half the population, understand that climate change is real and a threat but just don’t think about it very much and don’t understand why they would need to change their lives to deal with it. If that apathy isn’t tackled, the world will face dangerous warming.
agnotology  attention  climatechange 
september 2017 by juliusbeezer
This is how your world could end | Environment | The Guardian
the most common maximums for wet-bulb temperatures around the world are 26C to 27C. Wet-bulb temperatures of 35C or higher are lethal to humanity. Above this limit, it is impossible for humans to dissipate the heat they generate indefinitely and they die of overheating in a matter of hours, no matter how hard they try to cool off.

“So we were trying to get across the point that physiology and adaptation and these other things will have nothing to do with this limit. It’s the easy-bake oven limit,” he said. “You cook yourself, very slowly.”

What that means is that this limit is likely far too generous for human survivability.

“When you do real modelling, you hit a limit much sooner, because human beings aren’t wet socks,” he said. According to Huber and Sherwood’s modelling, 7C of warming would begin to render large parts of the globe lethally hot to mammals. Continue warming past that and truly huge swaths of the planet currently inhabited by humans would exceed 35C wet-bulb temperatures and would have to be abandoned.
climatechange  climate 
september 2017 by juliusbeezer
CO2 Intensity of Electric Cars | Energy Matters
The bar chart shows that it is mainly countries where electricity is already decarbonised as a result of legacy nuclear and or hydro production that EVs compete with diesel cars on the emissions front (Spain to Paraguay). In all most other countries, EVs will produce similar amounts or more almost as much CO2 than diesel cars, 2 1.7 times as much in India. EVs fare better when compared with petrol cars but not to the extent that would warrant a $10,000 subsidy. And the gasoline car shown has a high fuel consumption of 25 mpg (Table 1). Most petrol cars in Europe will achieve much better fuel consumption than this.

As an additional check, David Mackay [2] quoted a figure (among several others) of 105 g CO2/km for an EV assuming that electricity has a footprint of 500 g CO2 per kWh. That is for driving alone and adding on the manufacturing component we get to 175 gCO2/km which lies in the middle of the numbers discussed here.
driving  climatechange 
august 2017 by juliusbeezer
Exxon Dared Critics to Prove It Misled the Public. These Researchers Just Called the Company’s Bluff. – Mother Jones
Their content analysis examines how 187 company documents treated climate change from 1977 through 2014. Researchers found that of the documents that address the causes of climate change, 83 percent of its peer-reviewed scientific literature and 80 percent of its internal documents said it was real and man-made, while the opposite was true of the ads. The researchers analyzed ads published in the New York Times between 1989 and 2004. In those ads, 81 percent expressed doubt about the scientific consensus, tending to emphasize the “uncertainty’ and “knowledge gap,” while just 12 percent affirmed the science.

The same pattern holds for how Exxon has addressed the seriousness of the consequences of climate change. Downplaying the impacts is another tactic climate deniers tend to use to call for more delays in implementing policies that curb fossil fuel use. Sixty percent of Exxon’s peer-reviewed papers and 53 percent of its internal documents acknowledge serious impacts—a 1982 internal document lists flooding and sea level rise and a 2002 paper lists coral reef bleaching and the disintegration of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet among them—but Exxon’s ads were more likely to claim, “The sky is not falling.”
climatechange  agnotology 
august 2017 by juliusbeezer
What ‘Clean Coal’ Is — and Isn’t - The New York Times
Critics note that “clean coal” is a misleading term for any of these techniques. Even a coal power plant that emits fewer pollutants is still a far dirtier way to produce electricity than a natural gas, nuclear, wind or solar plant. In 2014, the Clean Air Task Force estimated that particle pollution from power plants, mainly coal, led to 7,500 premature deaths each year, although that number has been going down over time because of environmental regulations and the retirement of older coal plants in the face of cheap natural gas.
fossil-fuel  climatechange  economics 
august 2017 by juliusbeezer
When Will Climate Change Make the Earth Too Hot For Humans?
We published “The Uninhabitable Earth” on Sunday night, and the response since has been extraordinary — both in volume (it is already the most-read article in New York Magazine’s history) and in kind. Within hours, the article spawned a fleet of commentary across newspapers, magazines, blogs, and Twitter, much of which came from climate scientists and the journalists who cover them.

Some of this conversation has been about the factual basis for various claims that appear in the article. To address those questions, and to give all readers more context for how the article was reported and what further reading is available, we are publishing here a version of the article filled with research annotations. They include quotations from scientists I spoke with throughout the reporting process; citations to scientific papers, articles, and books I drew from; additional research provided by my colleague Julia Mead; and context surrounding some of the more contested claims. Since the article was published, we have made four corrections and adjustments, which are noted in the annotations (as well as at the end of the original version).
journalism  annotation  peerreview  attention  climatechange  sciencepublishing  science 
august 2017 by juliusbeezer
Analysis: Switch to electric vehicles would add just 10% to UK power demand | Carbon Brief
Note that EVs offer CO2 savings even under relatively CO2-heavy electricity grids including coal-fired generation. This is because EVs are more efficient than combustion-engine cars. Similarly, the CO2 associated with manufacturing EV batteries is more than offset by savings during EVs’ lifetimes.

A comprehensive literature review from the International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT) says EVs offer CO2 savings of 40-50% compared to average combustion engine vehicles. This includes full lifecycle emissions including manufacture, use and electricity generation, based on an EU average grid mix. This means EVs could cut global emissions by 1.5 billion tonnes of CO2 per year in 2050, a second ICCT study says.
driving  renewables  energy  climatechange  pollution 
august 2017 by juliusbeezer
Thanks, Climate Change: Heat Waves Will Keep on Grounding Planes | WIRED
“A lot of airplanes at full capacity are ill-equipped to take off on some of the world’s runways when temperatures get really high.”

The scientists looked at five common commercial airplane models—the Boeing 737-800, Airbus A320, Boeing 787-8, Boeing 777-300, and Airbus A380—and calculated how their takeoffs would be affected at 19 airports around the world, based on projected temperatures from 27 different global climate models.
aviation  climatechange  aéroport 
july 2017 by juliusbeezer
When Will Climate Change Make the Earth Too Hot For Humans?
If your anxiety about global warming is dominated by fears of sea-level rise, you are barely scratching the surface of what terrors are possible, even within the lifetime of a teenager today. And yet the swelling seas — and the cities they will drown — have so dominated the picture of global warming, and so overwhelmed our capacity for climate panic, that they have occluded our perception of other threats, many much closer at hand. Rising oceans are bad, in fact very bad; but fleeing the coastline will not be enough...

There are now, trapped in Arctic ice, diseases that have not circulated in the air for millions of years — in some cases, since before humans were around to encounter them. Which means our immune systems would have no idea how to fight back when those prehistoric plagues emerge from the ice.

The Arctic also stores terrifying bugs from more recent times. In Alaska, already, researchers have discovered remnants of the 1918 flu that infected as many as 500 million and killed as many as 100 million — about 5 percent of the world’s population and almost six times as many as had died in the world war for which the pandemic served as a kind of gruesome capstone.
climatechange  disease 
july 2017 by juliusbeezer
What does ‘Clean Coal’ CCS Failure in U.S. Mean for Meeting Our 2°C Climate Goals? | DeSmog UK
The concept of “clean coal” was dealt a significant blow as Southern Company announced last week that it was suspending its coal gasification project in Mississippi.

The project was meant to be America’s flagship example for commercial-scale carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology. It was going to be a way to keep burning coal, except without the polluting carbon dioxide emissions.

The failure of this “clean coal” experiment has impacts beyond the US though as the world continues to wait for CCS technology to take off at scale.

CCS is the process of scrubbing carbon dioxide emissions from power plants and other industrial sources and storing them deep underground. The Kemper plant was attempting to use CCS in the power generation process as it converted coal into natural gas.
energy  climatechange 
july 2017 by juliusbeezer
BlackRock Busts $1 Billion Green Power Goal With Second Fund - Bloomberg
BlackRock Inc. exceeded a $1 billion fundraising target for wind and solar investments for its latest global clean energy fund, underscoring investor interest in renewable energy amid policy uncertainty in key markets.

The second Global Renewable Power Fund, or GRP II, managed by BlackRock’s Real Assets closed after it raised $1.6 billion from 67 pension funds, insurance companies and institutional investors, according to a statement on Wednesday.
climatechange  finance  renewables 
july 2017 by juliusbeezer
'Flammable Ice' Harvesting Could Spell Trouble for the Climate
"Fundamentally, it [methane] is still a fossil fuel, and when you burn it for energy, you still produce CO2," Mann told Live Science in an email. "A fossil fuel, fundamentally, cannot be the solution to a problem that is caused by fossil fuels."

Still, the worst-case possibility — of vast methane leaks going straight into the atmosphere — may not be as likely as people have assumed, Ruppel said.

"Even after the Deepwater Horizon incident, which released a lot of methane in the ocean, studies showed a lot of the methane was consumed by microbes, and turned into CO2," Ruppel told Live Science, referring to the 2010 disaster involving a huge oil spill. "It's not like this methane is on a freight train to the atmosphere."

However, even if there's a safe way to extract methane from the ocean, methane is a natural gas, so it warms the climate, several experts said.
clathrates  climatechange 
july 2017 by juliusbeezer
How a Professional Climate Change Denier Discovered the Lies and Decided to Fight for Science
From 1991 through 2000, I was a pretty good warrior on that front. I was absolutely convinced of the case for skepticism with regard to climate science and of the excessive costs of doing much about it even if it were a problem. I used to write skeptic talking points for a living.

SL: What was your turning point?

JT: It started in the early 2000s. I was one of the climate skeptics who do battle on TV and I was doing a show with Joe Romm. On air, I said that, back in 1988, when climate scientist James Hansen testified in front of the Senate, he predicted we’d see a tremendous amount of warming. I argued it’d been more than a decade and we could now see by looking at the temperature record that he wasn’t accurate. After we got done with the program and were back in green room, getting the makeup taken off, Joe said to me, “Did you even read that testimony you’ve just talked about?” And when I told him it had been a while, he said “I’m daring you to go back and double check this.” He told me that some of Hansen’s projections were spot on. So I went back to my office and I re-read Hanson’s testimony. And Joe was correct. So I then I talked to the climate skeptics who had made this argument to me, and it turns out they had done so with full knowledge they were being misleading.
climatechange  politics  agnotology 
may 2017 by juliusbeezer
Obama had a chance to really fight climate change. He blew it. - Vox
Despite vigorous recent attempts to greenwash his legacy, President Obama’s climate policy in his first term was largely indistinguishable from George W. Bush’s. Both fought mightily to avoid greenhouse gas regulation — Bush because he didn’t care about the issue, Obama because it was a lower priority than health care and, after the Affordable Care Act passed, because of fear of the political consequences. Only after the 2012 election did Obama show any appetite for actual emissions regulation, and by then it was too little — and way too late.

Why “too late”? Better late than never, you might think. The catch, and it’s a big one, is that regulations that came out in the second half of 2016 can be killed via the Congressional Review Act (CRA) — eliminated through a simple-majority vote of both houses of Congress, and the president’s signature. Such climate-related regulations that Obama issued exist at the whim of the Republican House and Senate — and we know the inclinations of the Republican Congress.
climatechange  us  politics 
april 2017 by juliusbeezer
Cut fossil fuel use dramatically: Shell-backed climate report
The falling costs of renewables means that increasing shares of overall energy use could be decarbonised through electrification, the report says. Around 10-20% of fossil fuel use could be eliminated in this way, using electric vehicles and heating.

Across the global economy, a “step change in energy productivity” is required, with improvements in the amount of energy needed to generate wealth rising from 1.7% per year to 3%. To achieve this “energy productivity revolution”, more efficient devices and vehicles will have to be combined with deeper structural change, such as more efficient urban design.
environment  climatechange  urban  energy 
april 2017 by juliusbeezer
Hauntingly Freakish Siberian Wildfires Now Flicker to Life in April | robertscribbler
This year’s early wildfire eruption in Siberia comes after 2014, 2015, and 2016 wildfire outbreaks during similar timeframes and following similarly abnormal warm periods. These fires tended to crop up south of Lake Baikal or closer to the China-Russia border. This year, the early fire outbreak appears to have emerged both further north and generally along a wider expanse than during past years.

If past years are any guide, we can expect the present fire season’s early start to produce blazes that continue through September and that peak sometime during late June through August. The fires will tend to be very large and will probably range as far north as the Arctic Ocean.
climatechange 
april 2017 by juliusbeezer
Scientists just found telltale evidence of an ancient methane explosion in the Arctic - The Washington Post
new findings provide suggestive evidence that changes in the ancient climate may have had a dramatic effect on the earth’s methane deposits — and they suggest that, at some point, a similar relationship could occur again.

Grasby, along with a team of scientists from institutes in Canada and Europe, discovered evidence for the ancient methane leak during a recent expedition to remote Ellef Ringnes Island in the Canadian Arctic, which they have described in a paper published this month in the Geological Society of America Bulletin. There, they found a cluster of 139 strange, rocky mounds, which they say were formed by a rapid release of large amounts of methane from the ocean floor.
climatechange  clathrates 
april 2017 by juliusbeezer
Receding glacier causes immense Canadian river to vanish in four days | Science | The Guardian
The abrupt and unexpected disappearance of the Slims river, which spanned up to 150 metres at its widest points, is the first observed case of “river piracy”, in which the flow of one river is suddenly diverted into another.

For hundreds of years, the Slims carried meltwater northwards from the vast Kaskawulsh glacier in Canada’s Yukon territory into the Kluane river, then into the Yukon river towards the Bering Sea. But in spring 2016, a period of intense melting of the glacier meant the drainage gradient was tipped in favour of a second river, redirecting the meltwater to the Gulf of Alaska, thousands of miles from its original destination.
climatechange  geography 
april 2017 by juliusbeezer
Stop swooning over Justin Trudeau. The man is a disaster for the planet | Bill McKibben | Opinion | The Guardian
Last month, speaking at a Houston petroleum industry gathering, Trudeau got a standing ovation from the oilmen for saying: “No country would find 173bn barrels of oil in the ground and just leave them there.”

Yes, 173bn barrels is indeed the estimate for recoverable oil in the tar sands. So let’s do some math. If Canada digs up that oil and sells it to people to burn, it will produce, according to the math whizzes at Oil Change International, 30% of the carbon necessary to take us past the 1.5C target that Canada helped set in Paris.

That is to say, Canada, which represents one half of 1% of the planet’s population, is claiming the right to sell the oil that will use up a third of the earth’s remaining carbon budget. Trump is a creep and a danger and unpleasant to look at, but at least he’s not a stunning hypocrite.
climatechange  canada 
april 2017 by juliusbeezer
Guess Who’s for a Carbon Tax Now - The New York Times
Oil companies that support a carbon tax do so because they are also gas companies, and carbon pricing would help gas replace coal in the power generation business.

They also know that the likely alternative is a patchwork of regulations. “If you accept that society is going to deal with this problem, you want approaches you can understand, manage and work,” said Nicolette Bartlett, director of carbon pricing at CDP, a global organization through which companies disclose their environmental impacts. “Market-based approaches give you this.”
climatechange  politics 
april 2017 by juliusbeezer
Use Of Alternative Jet Fuels Won't Allow For Significant Emissions Reductions, Study Finds | CleanTechnica
The problems? Other than costs, the issues are: 1) when land use change effects are factored in, vegetable oil–based feedstocks usually have a higher carbon intensity than conventional jet fuel does, and 2) with regard to agricultural waste feedstocks, the supply simply isn’t there (and won’t be there) to offset significant amounts of conventional jet fuel use.

The study was performed with the intent of evaluating the possibility of the aviation sector achieving carbon-neutral growth by or after 2020 (despite the sector’s expectation of strong growth over the coming decades).

Here’s more on the study from the ICCT: “The feedstocks that provide the largest carbon reductions in AJFs are constrained in their supply and will likely also be in demand from competing sectors such as road transport. Estimates for maximum availability of sustainable AJF feedstocks reveal that it would be impossible to substitute total jet fuel consumption with AJF up to 2050 or attain carbon-neutral growth through AJF only. Although estimated demand for jet fuel amounts to 24–37 EJ in 2050, the absolute maximum amount of lignocellulosic biofuel that could be available for the aviation sector is around 4 EJ in 2050
energy  aviation  climatechange 
april 2017 by juliusbeezer
German coal plants burn on as EU carbon price stagnates | Climate Home - climate change news
The UK’s emissions from coal power generation plummeted 58% in 2016, helped by a minimum carbon price of £18 a tonne of CO2 (US$22).

In stark contrast, the EU market price of €5 ($5) is making little dent in Germany’s coal sector. Seven of the EU’s 10 biggest polluters are German lignite (brown coal) plants.
eu  politics  climatechange  germany 
april 2017 by juliusbeezer
Majority of People in Britain Accept Climate Change is ‘Happening Right Now’, Survey Shows | DeSmog UK
most people understand that the climate is changing and that these changes will be seen through more extreme weather, the number of people who still remain sceptical is the highest in the UK, at 14 percent, compared to just eight percent of people voicing scepticism in France and nine percent in Norway.

The report is quick to point out, however, that scepticism is “not very widespread” and that across the four countries “a clear majority think that climate change is at least partly caused by human activity”.

But while it seems most people understand the science behind climate change, many are still not sure about how many scientists agree about the reality of climate change and it being caused by human activities.

In Britain, for instance, just 30 percent of people think the vast majority of scientists agree about climate change and 28 percent think most scientists do. Meanwhile only five percent think just a small minority of scientists agree.
climatechange  agnotology  europe  uk  politics 
march 2017 by juliusbeezer
Q&A: The social cost of carbon | Carbon Brief
the SCC is the social cost of CO2, not simply carbon, and it is usually measured in dollars, pounds or euros per metric tonne of CO2. You might see it shortened to SC-CO2, to distinguish it from estimates of the social cost of methane (SC-CH4). We use SCC throughout this article, referring to CO2.
climatechange  economics 
february 2017 by juliusbeezer
Scientists Discover An Environmental Message That Resonates With Conservatives  | GOOD
A recent experiment asked self-identified liberals and conservatives what they would do with a $0.50 donation they had to give to an environmental charity. One charity’s focus was on reinstating a healthier Earth from the past, while the other emphasized preventing future environmental degradation.

The study found that conservatives were much more inclined to donate to the charity whose messaging emphasized restoring the Earth to its past state. This new data gives scientists a way to frame climate change information to make it more appealing to conservatives. This type of messaging embraces the conservative value of preserving the past while mitigating their skepticism towards change. Who knows, maybe if climate scientists started wearing red hats that said “MAKE EARTH GREAT AGAIN,” conservatives might really start paying attention.
politics  authoritarianism  environment  climatechange 
february 2017 by juliusbeezer
The causes of the recent decrease in US greenhouse gas emissions | Energy Matters
According to these results the US electricity sector is in fact responsible for only about 30% of total US GHG emissions – a good illustration of the futility of concentrating on cutting electricity sector emissions while ignoring emissions from other sectors.

Between 2007 and 2014 total US annual GHG emissions fell from a peak of 7,370 to 6,826 million tonnes. This 544 million-tonne decrease is in the same range as the UK’s total annual GHG emissions – i.e. not peanuts. Figure 2, which plots emissions by sector, shows how the different sectors contributed to the decrease (data again from EPA).
energy  climatechange 
february 2017 by juliusbeezer
The Atomic Origins of Climate Science - The New Yorker
Reagan was himself persuaded by nuclear winter; a nuclear war, he said, “could just end up in no victory for anyone because we would wipe out the earth as we know it.” In the U.S.S.R., nuclear winter energized dissidents. In 1985, when the Soviet physician Vladimir Brodsky was arrested, one of the charges was “transmitting a letter to the Soviet Academy of Sciences requesting greater publicity about the nuclear winter.” Protesters in Moscow’s Gagarin Square chanted, “Tell the truth about the nuclear-winter phenomenon to our people.” Eduard Shevardnadze, the Soviet foreign minister, talked about nuclear winter in a speech at the U.N., and Mikhail Gorbachev alluded to it on another occasion. In 1985, the Federation of American Scientists presented Sagan with an award honoring him as the “Most Visible Member of the Scientific Community on the Planet Earth.” In 1986, Turco won a MacArthur prize. After that year, the number of nuclear weapons in the world began to decline.
nukes  climatechange  us  ussr 
february 2017 by juliusbeezer
Arctic 2.0: What happens after all the ice goes? : Nature News & Comment
Emerging research4 suggests that open water in the Arctic might have helped to amplify weather events, such as cold snaps in the United States, Europe and Asia in recent winters.

Indeed, the impacts could reach around the globe. That’s because sea ice helps to cool the planet by reflecting sunlight and preventing the Arctic Ocean from absorbing heat. Keeping local air and water temperatures low, in turn, limits melting of the Greenland ice sheet and permafrost. With summer ice gone, Greenland’s glaciers could contribute more to sea-level rise, and permafrost could release its stores of greenhouse gases such as methane. Such is the vast influence of Arctic ice.
climate  clathrates  climatechange 
february 2017 by juliusbeezer
About Us | DeSmog UK
DeSmog UK encourages intelligent, informed and robust debate. Commenters are encouraged to include links to supporting information as this helps enrich the conversation, especially when discussing climate change science. Users who make demonstrably false claims about the science may on occasion have their posts deleted. We believe this will assist readers in accessing more reliable information. DeSmog UK does not censor comments based on political or ideological points of view. We may delete comments that are abusive, off-topic or use offensive language.
agnotology  commenting  journalism  climatechange 
february 2017 by juliusbeezer
Gas Hydrate Breakdown Unlikely to Cause Massive Greenhouse Gas Release
The new review concludes that current warming of ocean waters is likely causing gas hydrate deposits to break down at some locations. However, not only are the annual emissions of methane to the ocean from degrading gas hydrates far smaller than greenhouse gas emissions to the atmosphere from human activities, but most of the methane released by gas hydrates never reaches the atmosphere. Instead, the methane often remains in the undersea sediments, dissolves in the ocean, or is converted to carbon dioxide by microbes in the sediments or water column.

The review pays particular attention to gas hydrates beneath the Arctic Ocean, where some studies have observed elevated rates of methane transfer between the ocean and the atmosphere. As noted by the authors, the methane being emitted to the atmosphere in the Arctic Ocean has not been directly traced to the breakdown of gas hydrate in response to recent climate change, nor as a consequence of longer-term warming since the end of the last Ice Age.

“Our review is the culmination of nearly a decade of original research by the USGS, my coauthor Professor John Kessler at the University of Rochester, and many other groups in the community,” said USGS geophysicist Carolyn Ruppel, who is the paper’s lead author and oversees the USGS Gas Hydrates Project. “After so many years spent determining where gas hydrates are breaking down and measuring methane flux at the sea-air interface, we suggest that conclusive evidence for release of hydrate-related methane to the atmosphere is lacking.”
clathrates  climatechange 
february 2017 by juliusbeezer
Absence of carbon capture and storage is ‘biggest challenge to’ 2C limit | Carbon Brief
The study gets around this problem by using a method known as the “Kaya Identity”, which breaks the rate of CO2 emissions down into the different human factors that affect it. This, as you can see from the diagram below, includes broad influences such as GDP and more specific factors such as how much renewable energy is up and running.

The idea is that this can be used to assess progress across all of the different emissions pledges to show whether the world as a whole is on track.
climatechange 
february 2017 by juliusbeezer
Bay of Bengal: depleted fish stocks and huge dead zone signal tipping point | Environment | The Guardian
Last month a multinational team of scientists reported an alarming finding – a very large “dead zone” has appeared in the bay. Apart from sulphur-oxidising bacteria and marine worms, few creatures can live in these oxygen-depleted waters15. This zone already spans some 60,000 sq km and appears to be growing16.

The dead zone of the Bay of Bengal is now at a point where a further reduction in its oxygen content could have the effect of stripping the water of nitrogen, a key nutrient. This transition could be triggered either by accretions of pollution or by changes in the monsoons, a predicted effect of global warming.
[Indian Ocean]
climatechange  marine  food  agroecology  environment 
january 2017 by juliusbeezer
High temperatures to hit staple crops in the US this century, study says | Carbon Brief
The research team used a collection of crop models to assess the impact of rising temperatures on the three crops by the end of the century. Their simulations assume a business-as-usual scenario, called RCP8.5, where emissions aren’t curbed and global average temperature rise is likely to hit 5C by 2100.

The results suggest that with more days surpassing 30C in future, high temperatures will increasingly cause harm to crops – lowering yields by 49%, 40% and 22% for maize, soybean and wheat, respectively.

Note, the study only considers temperature; it doesn’t factor in changes to rainfall or the frequency of extreme weather events.
food  agriculture  climatechange  us 
january 2017 by juliusbeezer
Rapid rise in methane emissions in 10 years surprises scientists | Environment | The Guardian
Scientists have been surprised by the surge, which began just over 10 years ago in 2007 and then was boosted even further in 2014 and 2015. Concentrations of methane in the atmosphere over those two years alone rose by more than 20 parts per billion, bringing the total to 1,830ppb...
The authors of the 2016 Global Methane Budget report found that in the early years of this century, concentrations of methane rose by only about 0.5ppb each year, compared with 10ppb in 2014 and 2015.
climatechange  clathrates 
december 2016 by juliusbeezer
Twitter
RT : Countries are going to pay for one way or another best way to pay for it is tackling the root causes
ClimateChange 
december 2016 by juliusbeezer
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