Notes From Underground: Pipeline to Paris

Facebooktwittergoogle_plus

Notes from the underground parisThe 21st Conference of the Parties (COP 21) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) is taking place in Paris until December 11th.

The Paris Conference will hopefully yield real solutions to climate change — that is, provide measures to achieve sufficient mitigation of CO2-equivalent emissions to make adaptation to the unavoidable impacts of climate change possible. But even as the plans and deals are being hammered out, two things are clear: first, that the lead up to the conference has already forced important action on the part of various stakeholders, and second, that any resulting plan could still be dismantled before it can be carried out.
Continue reading

Posted in Activism, Assessments of Climate Impacts and Adaptation, Climate Change Education and Communication, Climate Change Mitigation, Climate Change Preparedness, Congress: Legislation and Oversight, Energy, General, Global Climate Disruption and Impacts, Global Warming Denial Machine, International Climate Policy, Obama Administration, Obama Climate Plan, Science Communication, Science-Policy Interaction | Comments Off on Notes From Underground: Pipeline to Paris

The Importance of Paris: What’s the Climate Now?

Facebooktwittergoogle_plus

shutterstock_110244986_news_featuredIn the past year alone, there has been a marked sea-change in the wider American public and international discourse on climate change. For far too long, it seems, the world has had to endure the prolonged grieving process of the fossil fuel industry.

The debate over climate change has been dominated by a fossil fuel industry in a deep state of denial (Stage 1) and anger (Stage 2) and which, so far, has refused to accept that the age of fossil fuel dependence is dead.
Continue reading

Posted in Activism, Assessments of Climate Impacts and Adaptation, Attacks on Climate Science and Scientists, Climate Change Education and Communication, Climate Change Mitigation, Climate Change Preparedness, Climate Science Censorship, General, Global Climate Disruption and Impacts, Global Warming Denial Machine, International Climate Policy, National Security, Obama Administration, Science Communication, Science-Policy Interaction, Scientific Integrity, Whistleblowers | Comments Off on The Importance of Paris: What’s the Climate Now?

Notes From Underground: Fracking – The Bridge to Nowhere, Part II

Facebooktwittergoogle_plus

NFUG, CSPW Fracking 2Its defenders like to claim that fracked natural gas is providing a bridge between the traditional fossil fuels of oil and coal, and clean, renewable energy like wind and solar power. I suggest that such a bridge is unnecessary, and that the investment in fracking and its associated infrastructure represents a step backward in the pursuit of widely available, sustainable energy, creating illusory benefits with real, negative side effects.
Continue reading

Posted in Assessments of Climate Impacts and Adaptation, Climate Change Education and Communication, Energy, General, Obama Climate Plan | Comments Off on Notes From Underground: Fracking – The Bridge to Nowhere, Part II

The United States is Dangerously Unprepared for Risks Imposed by Climate Change Impacts — Is Exxon Mobil Corporation Much to Blame?

Facebooktwittergoogle_plus
Exxon Knew PIC2

Excerpt of internal Exxon memo from August 1988 titled “The Greenhouse Effect.” Available at: http://graphics.latimes.com/exxon-research/

As we immediately posted on CSPW’s social media sites late yesterday, New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman issued a subpoena Wednesday evening to Exxon — signaling the beginning of what The New York Times reports to be “a sweeping investigation of Exxon Mobil to determine whether the company lied to the public about the risks of climate change or to investors about how those risks might hurt the oil business.” This has been long in coming and joins the chorus of what has been a nascent, but rapidly growing movement calling for at least two separate, but related, federal investigations into oil giant Exxon Mobil Corporation.

Climate Science & Policy Watch is launching a set of articles that will complement and strengthen this movement. CSPW will do so by providing the narrative, disclosing details of material damage inflicted on taxpayer-funded US climate science and communications programs, and concrete examples of instances in which Exxon engaged in obstructing the Executive branch from fulfilling obligations under the law to assess the likelihood of potential climate change impacts and to communicate those impacts to Congress and the American people.
Continue reading

Posted in Assessments of Climate Impacts and Adaptation, Climate Change Education and Communication, Climate Change Mitigation, Climate Change Preparedness, Climate Science Censorship, Climate Science Watch, Global Climate Disruption and Impacts, Global Warming Denial Machine, National Security, Science Communication, Science-Policy Interaction, Scientific Integrity, U.S. Global Change Research Program | Comments Off on The United States is Dangerously Unprepared for Risks Imposed by Climate Change Impacts — Is Exxon Mobil Corporation Much to Blame?

Should Exxon Be Prosecuted for Suppressing Climate Science?

Facebooktwittergoogle_plus

Buttons-ExxonMobil-2The latest newsflash is that Exxon scientists researched man-made global warming as early as the 1970s, found it to be a likely threat, and told management. But Exxon’s management responded by keeping the science under wraps and spending tens of millions on a science-denial PR campaign that spanned decades. All the while, Exxon was using its scientists’ predictions of global warming to guide its own business decisions in places like the Arctic, and denying that it was funding climate-change denial.

Now a long battle over scientific truth — and the corporate right to lie — may eventually be moving from the politicized halls of the Capitol to criminal court. Some experienced prosecutors, members of Congress, and presidential candidates are calling for probes into whether Exxon should be prosecuted.
Continue reading

Posted in Assessments of Climate Impacts and Adaptation, Attacks on Climate Science and Scientists, Climate Change Education and Communication, Climate Change Preparedness, Climate Science Censorship, Climate Science Watch, General, Global Climate Disruption and Impacts, Global Warming Denial Machine, Science Communication, Scientific Integrity, Uncategorized | Comments Off on Should Exxon Be Prosecuted for Suppressing Climate Science?

Hell and High Water: the Perils of Climate Denial Politics — South Carolina as a Case Example

Facebooktwittergoogle_plus

Jaoquin pics4South Carolina was the hardest hit of all the Atlantic coastal states affected by the massive storm system that was exacerbated by Hurricane Joaquin. Massive flooding took the lives of 19 South Carolinians and 6 others, demolished homes and buildings, turned roads into rivers, left over 30,000 without power, felled trees, and inflicted at least $1 billion in property damage. For Dixieland, the so-called October 2015 North American Storm Complex — there is not even a memorable name for it — is another Hugo (1989) or a milder (but still devastating) version of Hurricane Katrina (2005) or Sandy (2012).

Fewer than one out of ten homeowners in the state have flood insurance: the road ahead will be difficult if not impossible for many. Elected officials representing South Carolina have a poor track record of readying the state for a litany of climate change impacts predicted for the Southeastern US. Even Senator Lindsey Graham [R-SC], who has charmed environmental groups of late with sweet talk about the need for sensible policies to deal with climate change, and set himself apart from fellow Republicans who play the climate denial game, backtracked on passage of national climate change legislation at a critical moment in 2010, and again in 2012, when he voted to deny federal disaster relief for victims of Hurricane Sandy. South Carolina is poorly prepared for a climate disrupted future, its leaders at every level of government have thus far shirked their responsibility to help protect their constituents from climate risks, and now, the state is feeling the sting of an extreme weather event. Will lessons be learned, and new, improved leadership emerge from the floodwaters?
Continue reading

Posted in Assessments of Climate Impacts and Adaptation, Climate Change Education and Communication, Climate Change Mitigation, Climate Change Preparedness, Climate Science Watch, Climate Science Watch Update, Global Climate Disruption and Impacts, Global Warming Denial Machine, National Security, Uncategorized | Comments Off on Hell and High Water: the Perils of Climate Denial Politics — South Carolina as a Case Example

Rick Piltz’s Legacy: One Year Later

Facebooktwittergoogle_plus

RP 1It has been a year since Rick Piltz passed away. At GAP we miss him profoundly. We were not prepared for his sudden departure, of course. The antidote to our feeling of loss has been to work as hard and effectively as humanly possible on Rick’s legacy program: Climate Science and Policy Watch. As we continue to execute the challenging vision he set before us in the face of the critical need and evolving opportunities to have a solid impact, we are blessed to have join us as CSPW contributors a host of former science colleagues, associates whom Rick mentored, and other professionals whose lives Rick touched in deeply meaningful ways.
Continue reading

Posted in Activism, Attacks on Climate Science and Scientists, Climate Change Education and Communication, Climate Science Censorship, Climate Science Watch, Global Warming Denial Machine, Uncategorized | Comments Off on Rick Piltz’s Legacy: One Year Later

Associated Press Bans Term “Deniers,” Prefers “Doubters”: An Inaccurate and Misleading Replacement

Facebooktwittergoogle_plus
global-warming-stylebook-entry

Image source: Associated Press

Climate change denial has always been about controversy. As the science of man-made climate change has become increasingly certain over the last three decades of work by thousands of researchers, a cadre of deniers, often funded by fossil fuel industries, has become more vocal. During that same time, the use of the term “denier” to describe them has become increasingly common. Now that is controversial, too.

In many newsrooms, the Associated Press (AP) Stylebook is the default rulebook on everything from what to capitalize and which words to avoid. So when the AP banned the term climate change “denier” on September 22, it started an argument that matters.
Continue reading

Posted in Attacks on Climate Science and Scientists, Climate Science Censorship, Climate Science Watch, General, Global Warming Denial Machine, Science Communication, Science-Policy Interaction, Scientific Integrity | Comments Off on Associated Press Bans Term “Deniers,” Prefers “Doubters”: An Inaccurate and Misleading Replacement

Notes From Underground: Fracking — The Bridge to Nowhere, Part I

Facebooktwittergoogle_plus

NFUG, CSPW Fracking 2According to its proponents, natural gas is supposed to be the bridge between old, dirty energy and new, clean, sustainable energy. But if the benefits it provides are temporary, illusory, and carry great risk to public health and the environment, fracked natural gas is not so much a bridge as it is a short pier – on which we’ve started a long walk.
Continue reading

Posted in Assessments of Climate Impacts and Adaptation, Climate Change Education and Communication, Climate Change Preparedness, Climate Science Watch, Energy, General, Global Warming Denial Machine, Obama Administration, Obama Climate Plan | Comments Off on Notes From Underground: Fracking — The Bridge to Nowhere, Part I

CSPW’s New Climate Action Plan Oversight Series: Continuing Rick Piltz’s Work on the CAP

Facebooktwittergoogle_plus

logo-cop21-paris-climat-2015largeWhen President Obama announced the Climate Action Plan (CAP) in June of 2013, it was a landmark moment. The first-of-its-kind plan aims at achieving comprehensive action on climate change by way of a three-fold goal: cutting domestic carbon pollution, adapting the US to irreversible climate change impacts, and leading the international community in addressing climate change at the global level.
Continue reading

Posted in Assessments of Climate Impacts and Adaptation, Climate Change Education and Communication, Climate Change Mitigation, Climate Change Preparedness, Climate Litigation, Climate Science Watch, Climate Science Watch Update, Congress: Legislation and Oversight, Energy, General, Global Climate Disruption and Impacts, Obama Climate Plan, Science-Policy Interaction | Comments Off on CSPW’s New Climate Action Plan Oversight Series: Continuing Rick Piltz’s Work on the CAP