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He predicted climate change in the ’60s

With poetic license: Come gather 'round people Wherever you roam And admit that the waters Around you have grown And accept it that soon You'll be drenched to the bone. If your time to you Is worth savin' Then you better start swimmin' Or you'll sink like a stone For the clime, it is a-changin'. Come writers and critics Who prophesize with your pen And keep your eyes wide The chance won't come again And don't speak too soon For the wheel's still in spin And there's no tellin' who That it's namin'. For the loser now Will be later …

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Another silly debate around the IPCC report

News stories have been reporting that the IPCC will make a statement about the relation between global warming and hurricanes: During marathon meetings in Paris, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change approved language that said an increase in hurricane and tropical cyclone strength since 1970 "more likely than not" can be attributed to man-made global warming, according to Leonard Fields of Barbados and Cedric Nelom of Surinam. The blogosphere is already awash with discussion about this (see here and here), and I expect all the usual suspects to weigh in on this soon. Some commenters have been arguing that this …

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Frankly, My Dear, We Don’t Want These Dams

Federal decision may be first step toward dam removal on the Klamath River Four hydroelectric dams along the Oregon-California border must ease fish passage to earn license renewal, says the Bush administration. The decision may spur the largest dam-removal project in history, as installation of fish ladders and other devices could cost far more than just removing the dam things. The Klamath River dams have cramped salmon's style for nearly a century, and local tribes, greens, and anglers have long clamored for their destruction. Last year, the feds agreed that was the best option to improve water quality and fish …

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Paris Exposed

As world awaits climate report, French capital sends a message All eyes are on Paris this week as the world waits en retenant son souffle for tomorrow's release of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report. (That means "with bated breath." We love the Google!) So Paris, ever obliging, is doing a banana dance to keep the masses entertained. Tonight, the Eiffel Tower and other landmarks in the City of Lights will go dark for five minutes to draw attention to energy consumption. The symbolic gesture "is not an exercise without risk," says a worried grid operator, "but we will …

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Grandchildren, Schmandchildren

Congress holds hearings, realizes climate change is upon us It's official: Congress has red-hot climate-change ants in its pants. As climate-related hearings in the House and Senate got rolling this week, Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) demanded White House documents that could show scientific interference. With a new report by two NGOs citing more than 120 scientists who report fed-meddling with their climate work, Waxman -- running his first hearing as chair of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee -- ain't just whistlin' "Oh Susanna." In the Senate, Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) launched an Environment and Public Works Committee hearing to …

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Fetch Me Another Rouge Taureau

Scientists, officials hash out climate report wording in Paris Call it the cram session from hell: about 500 scientists and officials are spending the week cooped up in Paris, undertaking a word-by-word edit of a major report on climate change. The first installment of the fourth Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report, due Friday, is expected to offer more certain conclusions about our global fate than earlier versions. Since the report must be approved by 154 countries, its seemingly radical predictions of devastating heat waves, sea-level rises, and more are in fact quite conservative. Some critics even say the report …

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It’s all about inequality

Blogging about the new Elizabeth Kolbert article in the New Yorker, David writes: But then, there's the nagging thought. Lovins can always talk and explain and persuade better than we can -- he's a friggin' genius -- but the intuitive question keeps returning: if there were so many errors, and so much benefit to be gained by correcting them, and it's all so easy ... why isn't it happening? Something doesn't fit. Roberts quotes Kolbert expressing similar thoughts: Lovins's promise that apparently intractable problems -- oil dependence, global warming, nuclear proliferation -- can be profitably resolved is both the great …

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Umbra on trusting scientists

Hi Umbra, We've had some bizarre weather in New England, and more and more people are wondering if it's due to global warming. On NBC News, they had a 30-year veteran of NOAA state flatly that it's not global warming, it's El Niño. As a greenie/leftie I got angry, thinking here goes the MSM denying reality again. Isn't the fact that we are seeing the effects of yet another El Niño indicative of a warming trend? Aren't the weeks of abnormally mild weather more ominous than the cyclical effects of El Niño? Is it acceptable for an NOAA scientist to …

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Upward Mobility

ExxonMobil says it's taking climate change seriously -- seriously Guess who said this about climate change: "We know enough now -- or, society knows enough now -- that the risk is serious and action should be taken." No, not some dirty hippie, but an executive from oil behemoth ExxonMobil. (Ow, our jaw!) Greenhouse-gas reduction has become a theme of Exxon's advertising, and the company is participating in an analysis by green think tank Resources for the Future of government options for addressing climate change. An Exxon spokesflack declares that the company's position on climate change has been "widely misunderstood," but …

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We’re All Alright

Blair, McCain lead pep rally at World Economic Forum Let's start the week with a bit of rhetorical optimism. In a high-profile speech this weekend at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland -- a gathering of leading politicians and businessfolk from around ye olde globe -- British Prime Minister Tony Blair offered a hopeful outlook for climate action. "I believe we are potentially on the verge of a breakthrough," he told a packed hall, pledging to support nuclear energy and to work toward a new, binding international emissions agreement that is "more radical than Kyoto and more comprehensive, one …