Climate Science Watch Weekly Update, 6/14


A brief summary of events we are attending, keeping track of, and writing about this week.

Post by Alexa Jay

Tuesday, June 15

President Obama will address the nation about the hemorrhaging Gulf oil blowout Tuesday at 8 P.M. EDT, senior White House adviser David Axelrod said Sunday on Meet the Press.  This is a key opportunity for the President to both outline his administration’s response plan and speak to the true costs of fossil fuel dependence, from the environmental disaster unfolding in the Gulf to the risks posed by global climatic disruption.  President Obama has thus far lent less-than-forceful public support to the passage of comprehensive climate and energy legislation, letting Congress take the lead in developing it.  But with rising anger over the Gulf oil disaster and an uncertain future for legislation in the Senate, the President has begun to ramp up his rhetoric in support of putting a price on carbon.  In Pittsburgh on June 2, Obama vowed that “the votes may not be there right now, but I intend to find them in the coming months…and we will get it done.”  It remains to be seen whether he will use this opportunity to connect our fossil fuel dependence to the growing threat of climate change, or to at least set the stage for a major speech about climate impacts in the push to pass comprehensive legislation.*

[*We had a recent exchange with John Holdren, the President’s Science Adviser, in which he said we can expect at some point a major speech about climate change from the President “that puts all this together in a very forceful way.”]

Global warming denialist watch:

Climategate – A Veteran Meteorologist Exposes the Global Warming Scam
The Heritage Foundation, Washington, DC
12:00 PM – 1:00 PM

From the Heritage Foundation website: “The common-sense consensus is in: Global warming is a sham. That’s what Brian Sussman, a former San Francisco meteorologist and current Bay Area talk radio show host, has been saying for years.  In his new book, Climategate, he provides the definitive word on why the architects behind such massive manipulation will employ every deception imaginable to advance their assertion that carbon dioxide emissions generated by mankind are ruining the planet.”

Sussman will speak Tuesday at the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank that has consistently opposed regulation of greenhouse gases and has distorted climate science to do so. One example from Climate Progress here.

In his new book, Sussman “asserts that the global warming hype is really just a form of communism rooted in the principles of Karl Marx,” according to an interview with Sean Hannity of Fox News.  Sussman is also known for promoting “birther” theories questioning President Obama’s citizenship.  If you need any further proof that Sussman panders to extreme-right conspiracy theories, Desmogblog has the scoop.

What possible motivation could climate scientists have for orchestrating a massive Marxist conspiracy, you ask? We’re going to find out! Stay tuned.


EPA’s economic analysis of the American Power Act is now available. (PDF, 74 pp, 738K)

Forthcoming Climate Science Watch posts:

Notes on climate science in the June 10 Senate debate on the Murkowski resolution to overturn the Environmental Protection Agency’s scientifically based “Endangerment Finding” on greenhouse gases, which was defeated by a vote of 47-53.

“Backdraft – The Conflict Potential of Climate Mitigation and Adaptation” – Notes on a June 10 panel at the Woodrow Wilson Center in Washington, DC.

On the problem of discussing climate change preparedness at the local level – Post-mortem on the National Climate Adaptation Summit.

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