Climate & Energy

'Be quiet and sit down'

Wisdom from 13th-century Persia

Last Friday, Bill Moyers interviewed the poet Robert Bly on PBS. Bly has been translating some of the poetry of the great Persian poets Hafez and Rumi, and he recited the following piece from Rumi: Just be quiet and sit down. The reason is you're drunk. And this is the edge of the roof. Bly (and Man with a Muck-Rake) relate this to Bush, but I wonder if the phrase could be also be applied to way humans have been abusing the environment: becoming drunk on fossil fuels and the natural capital of nature, ready to fall off the roof.

Pacific Rim nations meet to consider climate, unlikely to do much

If you haven’t had your fill of anticlimactic climate meetings, hark: climate is at the top of the agenda at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum in Sydney this week. APEC’s 21 members — Pacific Rim …

We won't even help our own

For mitigation over adaptation: the argument from cynicism

The second anniversary of Katrina has passed, marked by me only with craven silence. There are three Katrina tidbits I wanted to pass along, though, as they are germane to the argument over whether humanity …

Letter from Tom Gage

Consumer Reports hypes hydrogen cars

Consumer Reports has a fluff piece on hydrogen fuel cell cars in its latest issue (subs. req'd). I spend way too much time debunking this most consumer unfriendly of alternative fuel vehicles -- I even wrote a book on the subject, The Hype About Hydrogen. So I was happy to get an email from Tom Gage, President and CEO of AC Propulsion, containing a letter he sent to the magazine. I asked him if I could run it, and he not only said yes, he expanded it:

Post-Labor Day link dump, the second

Exploring the tubes so you don’t have to

Mo’ links! Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland Ohio recently passed a renewable portfolio standard that falls prey to the worst pitfalls of that particular policy mechanism: Gov. Ted Strickland wants to require that 25 percent of …

Mission Accomplished II

Bush lies misleads on global warming, again

The Prez has a long history of misleading the nation on climate change. Not unlike his father, who promised on the stump to be the "environmental president," Bush promised on the campaign trail in 2000 to reduce CO2 emissions, then promptly reversed this position once he took office. But that's in the history books. Last week, according to the Washington Post, he told an audience at a fundraiser in Washington state: Do you realize that the United States is the only major industrialized nation that cut greenhouse gases last year? One problem: that's, er, misleading at best. A spokesperson for the Council on Environmental Quality admitted so after the speech, saying that although the U.S. did slightly reduce energy consumption and thus emissions last year, it couldn't rule out the possibility that other nations did as well. "We are making sure the President is aware of that," the spokesperson said.

Voluntary actions didn’t get us civil rights, and they won’t fix the climate

Strange but true: Energy-efficient light bulbs and hybrid cars are hurting our nation’s budding efforts to fight global warming. More precisely, every time an activist or politician hectors the public to voluntarily reach for a …

Post-Labor Day link dump, the first

A gaggle of URLs

I’ve been off work since Wed., so a ton of stuff has accumulated in my browser. As I would prefer to start Autumn ’07 blogging with a clean slate, I hereby give you a Gargantuan …

Larry Craig's 'wide stance' on coal and timber

The disgraced senator’s real crimes go unpunished

In John Kennedy Toole’s A Confederacy of Dunces, a lowly cop finds himself assigned to lurk in a public bathroom, on the lookout for “suspicious characters.” Sen. Larry Craig bumbled into just that sort of …

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