Climate Change

Victor Lipman, Forbes, February 4, 2014

Two recent communications from respected global organizations have underscored the long-term impacts of climate change – and the potential vast effects on business. Communiques from the World Bank and the United Nations both highlighted the complex, long-lasting and extraordinarily costly nature of the problem.

David Robert Grimes, The Guardian, February 5, 2014
Burying your head in the sand does not qualify as scientific scepticism. Photograph: Daniel Karmann/DPA/Corbis

The grim findings of the IPCC last year reiterated what climatologists have long been telling us: the climate is changing at an unprecedented rate, and we're to blame. Despite the clear scientific consensus, a veritable brigade of self-proclaimed, underinformed armchair experts lurk on comment threads the world over, eager to pour scorn on climate science. Barrages of ad hominem attacks all too often await both the scientists working in climate research and journalists who communicate the research findings.

Ari Phillips, ThinkProgress, February 1, 2014

As California sees the future impacts of climate change playing out in the form of epic drought on one side of the globe, across the map in the U.K.

Joanna M. Foster, Climate Progress, January 28, 2014

The frozen opalescent lake and thin, gray sky fade together into white light where the horizon should be. Tall, skeletal grasses shiver on the beach in a wind that makes any sliver of exposed skin burn. The Arni J. Richter, an icebreaking ferry, is about to pull away from Northport Pier for its second and final trip of the day to Washington Island. It’s loaded with food and fuel for the more than 700 hardy residents who call the remote island, just north of Door County peninsula in Wisconsin, home.

Larry Pynn, Vancouver Sun, January 22, 2014
Less than five per cent of Metro Vancouver’s air pollutants on average comes from offshore, although that can increase to 25 per cent on certain days, says Michael Brauer of UBC’s School of Population and Public Health.  Photograph by: Mark van Manen , PNG

A new international study showing that pollutants from China are affecting air quality on the west coast of North America is partly payback for western consumers having their goods manufactured there, a University of B.C. professor said Wednesday. “Why are they having these high emissions?” asked Michael Brauer of the school of population and public health. “Part of it is the stuff they’re producing for us. Some of it is coming back to bite us ... through our consumption.”

Staff, Wall Street Journal, January 27, 2014

MANILA-The Philippines is reeling from a barrage of massive natural disasters-three in as many months-that has tested the ability of government responders and aid agencies to help millions of displaced people across the country's central and southern regions. "We're stretched as thin as I've ever seen," said Ned Olney, country director for Save the Children, one of numerous nongovernmental organizations responding to an earthquake on Oct. 15, a typhoon that made landfall on Nov. 8 and then deadly floods from a tropical depression that ended Jan. 20.

Dave Lindorff, Counterpunch, January 21, 2014
US Pentagon

Climate skeptics in Congress, and oil and coal industry lobbyists like the American Petroleum Institute (API) and the American Coal Council (ACC) may be preventing any significant action in the US on reducing this country’s emissions of carbon into the atmosphere, but at the Pentagon, and in the executive suites of the oil industry giants, there is no doubt about the reality of climate change.

 

Justin Gillis, New York Times, January 17, 2014
IPCC latest report

Nations have so dragged their feet in battling climate change that the situation has grown critical and the risk of severe economic disruption is rising, according to a draft United Nations report. Another 15 years of failure to limit carbon emissions could make the problem virtually impossible to solve with current technologies, experts found.

Norimitsu Onishi and Malia Wollan, New York Times, January 17, 2014
California drought

NORDEN, Calif. — Cattle ranchers have had to sell portions of their herd for lack of water. Sacramento and other municipalities have imposed severe water restrictions. Wildfires broke out this week in forests that are usually too wet to ignite. Ski resorts that normally open in December are still closed; at one here in the Sierra Nevada that is actually open, a bear wandered onto a slope full of skiers last week, apparently refusing to hibernate because of the balmy weather.

James M Byrne, The Guardian, January 16, 2014
The fossil fuel industry's high-stakes bluff takes balls. Photograph: Isaac Brekken/AP

My friends and I get together once a month to play Texas HoldEm poker - great conversation, a few drinks, snacks and laughs. But I don't like high-stakes poker. Gambling with high-value is not a wise choice, particularly if the pain of the loss translates beyond oneself. The fossil fuel industry is bluffing society in a multi-trillion dollar high-stakes poker game.

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