A growing number of climate advocates say increasing the price of fossil fuels is the surest way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, but leaders in the House and Senate are resisting calls for a carbon tax in Vermont.
During the last two legislative sessions, lawmakers introduced several bills that would have assessed a new tax on carbon-emitting fossil fuels. Last week, on the opening day of the legislative session, 40 or so people rallied in the Statehouse cafeteria against a carbon tax.
Three decades after a top climate scientist warned Congress of the dangers of global warming, greenhouse gas emissions keep rising and so do global temperatures.
Thirty years ago, a NASA scientist, James Hansen, told lawmakers at a Senate hearing that “global warming is now large enough that we can ascribe with a high degree of confidence a cause-and-effect relationship with the greenhouse effect.” He added that there “is only 1 percent chance of accidental warming of this magnitude.”
By that, he meant that humans were responsible.
His testimony made headlines around the United States and the world. But in the time since, greenhouse gas emissions, the global temperature average and cost of climate-related heat, wildfires, droughts, flooding and hurricanes have continued to rise.
The truth about climate change is nuanced: it is real, and in the long term it will be a problem, but its impact is less than we might believe. And yet we are too eager to believe the problem is far worse than science shows, and – conversely – that our solutions are far easier than reality dictates.
BRUSSELS – The latest global climate summit in Poland has generated familiar predictions of doom and disaster from environmental activists. Climate change seems to freeze our capacity for critical thinking: we are too eager to believe the problem is far worse than science shows, and – conversely – that our solutions are far easier than reality dictates.
Last year’s oceanic heat wave wasn’t as destructive as one the year before, scientists said.
The Great Barrier Reef fared better during an oceanic heat wave last year than during sizzling weather a year earlier that caused hundreds of miles of corals to bleach, according to a study published Monday that suggests the massive structure may be growing more tolerant to climate change.
The report in the journal Nature Climate Change analyzed how corals along the Great Barrier fared in back-to-back mass bleaching events. The reef ― a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the largest living structure on the planet ― was cooked by overheated seawater in 2016 and again in 2017, with images of sickly white coral horrifying people around the globe.
Germany’s task force on planning the definite phase-out of coal-fired power production has scrapped plans to present a decision before the end of this year.
Several days after three eastern German federal states had demanded better and more detailed plans to support coal mining regions, the so-called coal commission has decided to “conclude its work on 1 February 2019”.
The task force set up a working group from its ranks to draw up further concrete proposals for coal regions and to hold talks on these with both the federal and state governments, the commission said in a press release.
Talk about cold turkey! The coldest Thanksgiving in 100 years, and quite possibly the coldest Thanksgiving ever, has hit the Northeast United States today.
The unprecedented cold snap comes courtesy of a large Canadian chill working its way across the country on its way to the Atlantic. According to the Weather Network, the deep freeze is the result of a large, low pressure system moving south from the Arctic across the Great Lakes. Combine that with a wicked wind chill, and many Americans are looking at the coldest Thanksgiving in a century.
by Bob Weber, November 12, 2018, updated, in HuffingtonPost
There are too many polar bears in parts of Nunavut and climate change hasn’t yet affected any of them, says a draft management plan from the territorial government that contradicts much of conventional scientific thinking.
The proposed plan — which is to go to public hearings in Iqaluit on Tuesday — says that growing bear numbers are increasingly jeopardizing public safety and it’s time Inuit knowledge drove management policy.
“Inuit believe there are now so many bears that public safety has become a major concern,” says the document, the result of four years of study and public consultation.
THE CANADIAN PRESS
A draft plan from the Nunavut government says growing bear numbers are increasingly jeopardizing public safety.
China produces about two thirds of the whole world’s supply of lithium ion batteries, the most common battery type used in electric vehicles. Furthermore, these highly valuable batteries make up a staggering 40 percent of the cars’ value. As it stands, Europe is far from being able to compete with China when it comes to the production of lithium ion batteries. In fact, currently the entire continent is estimated to hold just 1 percent of the market.
First, Nordhaus shows that aggressive mitigation policies can be a cure worse than the disease, and he specifically includes the United Nation’s latest goal in his examples of such misguided goals. Second, Nordhaus’s estimate of the optimal carbon tax (for the year 2025, for example) has almost tripled in less than a decade. Third, far from being tied to specific analyses of particular threats, Nordhaus’s global damage estimate was largely driven by a simple survey of experts, and this figure was furthermore manipulated arbitrarily by Nordhaus in light of new developments. The public would be very surprised to learn just how crude the “settled science” underlying various proposals to limit climate change really is.
Environmental officials warned 30 years ago the Maldives could be completely covered by water due to global warming-induced sea level rise.
That didn’t happen. The Indian Ocean did not swallow the Maldives island chain as predicted by government officials in the 1980s.
In September 1988, the Agence France-Presse (AFP) reported a “gradual rise in average sea level is threatening to completely cover this Indian Ocean nation of 1196 small islands within the next 30 years,” based on predictions made by government officials.
Then-Environmental Affairs Director Hussein Shihab told AFP “an estimated rise of 20 to 30 centimetres in the next 20 to 40 years could be ‘catastrophic’ for most of the islands, which were no more than a metre above sea level.”
Even before Hurricane Florence made landfall somewhere near the border of North and South Carolina, predicted damage from potentially catastrophic flooding from the storm was already being blamed on global warming.
Writing for NBC News, Kristina Dahl contended, “With each new storm, we are forced to question whether this is our new, climate change-fueled reality, and to ask ourselves what we can do to minimize the toll from supercharged storms.”
The theory is that tropical cyclones have slowed down in their speed by about 10 percent over the past 70 years due to a retreat of the jet stream farther north, depriving storms of steering currents and making them stall and keep raining in one location. This is what happened with Hurricane Harvey in Houston last year.
But like most claims regarding global warming, the real effect is small, probably temporary, and most likely due to natural weather patterns …
Global tree canopy cover increased by 2.24 million square kilometers (865,000 square miles) between 1982 and 2016, reports a new study in Nature.
Researchers using satellite data tracked the changes in various land covers to find that gains in forest area in the temperate, subtropical, and boreal climatic zones are offsetting declines in the tropics. In addition, forest area is expanding even as areas of bare ground and short vegetation are shrinking. Furthermore, forests in montane regions are expanding as climate warming enables trees to grow higher up on mountain.
La géologie, une science plus que passionnante … et diverse