Articles filed under Pollution
The CO2 hysteria is absurd, considering the minute contribution made by human beings. Of course the climate is changing - it always has done, hence the thriving vineyards of Northumberland in the 12th century and the Thames frozen three feet deep in the 19th - but human activity is largely irrelevant. The world's climate is controlled by solar activity, by variations in the earth's rotation and orbit, by external factors in space and, terrestrially, by clouds and volcanic activity. If the Canutes of the IPCC imagine they can control those elements, they are even more infatuated than they appear.
Some might think Dr. Griffin is entitled to think for himself. Apart from his PhD in aerospace engineering, he holds five masters degrees, he is a member of the National Academy of Engineering and the International Academy of Astronautics, he manages a US$1.1-billion climate-research budget and was unanimously confirmed to head NASA by the United States Senate. But no. He is either "totally clueless" or "a deep anti-global warming ideologue," concludes Jerry Mahlman, a scientist at the National Center for Atmospheric Research, in a statement similar to many. Dr. Griffin's radio interview drew this storm of controversy after he was asked about the seriousness of global warming. He replied by saying, "I am not sure that it is fair to say that it is a problem we must wrestle with. To assume that it is a problem is to assume that the state of Earth's climate today is the optimal climate, the best climate that we could have or ever have had, and that we need to take steps to make sure that it doesn't change."
BEIJING - China acknowledged Monday that it soon may become the world's biggest source of harmful greenhouse gases but said the United States and other advanced countries must take the lead in fighting global warming because they had been polluting heavily for longer.
Wind power could also reduce coal-plant carbon dioxide, which is thought to cause climate change, but the impact may be small, the report said. By 2025, wind turbines could cut carbon dioxide output by 4.5 percent compared with what it would otherwise have been, but this "would only slow the increase," said Dr. Risser. "It wouldn't result in a decrease in the amount of CO2."
The only proven source of the steady base load electricity necessary for a modern society to function is nuclear fission. James Lovelock - deeply pessimistic about the effects of what he calls global heating - recognises this. However, Greenpeace and others stick to their long-established opposition to nuclear power. Some people see bio-fuels as an important component of a lower-carbon future. Others believe they are a distraction and cause more environmental problems than they solve. Of course, these are not the only options, but they illustrate the point that specific technologies should not to be rejected out of hand. It is ludicrous to suggest that we could rely on wind and solar power entirely. And the agenda for some seems to be to eliminate all private transport and scale back international trade enormously, to take us back to smaller, self-contained economic units; the very reverse of a globalisation trend which has been in progress for centuries.
Whether it is called "emissions trading", carbon credits, or cap and trade, the practice amounts to buying and selling the right to pollute. It is an administrative solution to pollution and doesn't, in the final analysis, prevent pollution at all.
RALEIGH - A nonprofit environmental advocacy group, which staunchly believes global warming must be reduced through reductions in human-caused carbon dioxide emissions, controls another nonprofit organization that advises a climate action panel started by the N.C. Division of Air Quality. The DAQ-created group, in turn, makes recommendations on carbon-dioxide reductions to the Legislative Commission on Global Climate Change. The advisory organization, the Center for Climate Strategies, is Pennsylvania-based and helped establish the study commission through a proposal to DAQ. But there is question whether the study panel, called the Climate Action Plan Advisory Group (CAPAG), is authorized under N.C. law.
Zichichi pointed out that human activity has less than a 10% impact on the environment. He also cited that models used by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) are incoherent and invalid from a scientific point of view. The U.N. commission was founded in 1988 to evaluate the risk of climate change brought on by humans.
This Earth Day, Professor Richard Lindzen, an atmospheric physicist and the Alfred P. Sloan Professor of Meteorology at MIT, wants you to calm down. The Earth, he says, is in good shape. "Forests are returning in Europe and the United States. Air quality has improved. Water quality has improved. We grow more food on less land. We've done a reasonably good job in much of the world in conquering hunger. And yet we're acting as though: "How can we stand any more of this?" A leading critic on the theory of man-made global warming, Professor Lindzen has developed a reputation as America's anti-doom-and gloom scientist. And he's not, he says, as lonely as you might think.
Dr. Friis-Christensen questions the very premise that human activity explains most of the global warming that we see, and through his work he has convinced much of an entire scientific discipline to explore his line of inquiry. Of all the scientists who are labelled "deniers" because they don't support the orthodoxy of the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, none comes in for more vilification than Eigil Friis-Christensen. For understandable reasons.
The alleged solutions have more potential for catastrophe than the putative problem. The conclusion of the late climate scientist Roger Revelle, Al Gore's supposed mentor, is worth pondering: the evidence for global warming thus far doesn't warrant any action unless it is justifiable on grounds that have nothing to do with climate.
The planet deserves the benefit of the doubt. Climate change is serious and must be a political priority. But the arguments must be subject to free and rigorous debate and the facts separated from fanciful predictions - the environment is too important to be bequeathed to the hysterical.
Matt Partridge, who sells Gamesa wind turbines in return for an outlandishly large subsidy, is circularising Welsh newspapers with various bits of evidence for global warming (Have Your Say, March 29). What has global warming got to do with the need, or otherwise, for wind turbines? Nothing - because the Government's own figure for saving the UK's CO2 emission by renewable power generation, mainly wind, is just 9.2 million tonnes per year by 2010. This is less than the emission from a single, medium-sized coal-fired power station, and is less than four ten-thousandths (0.0004) of global CO2 emission, and stands no chance of altering atmospheric CO2 concentration, still less deflecting climate change, as Mr Partridge's advertising spiel implies.
As the U.S. Supreme Court took decisive action Monday on the matter of planet-warming emissions, a proposed law in Washington to reduce carbon dioxide pollution continued to creep along, scarred and slightly mangled from multiple revisions. In its original form, the bill would have set state goals for cutting greenhouse gases, created limits for how much carbon dioxide new power plants could release, created a state climate office and required other actions to reduce pollution that's contributing to climate change. Since then, the legislation has morphed into a Franken-bill with new rules tacked onto it and major rewrites. It was then patched together into something approximating its original form and on Monday, it was tacked onto another piece of legislation to help ensure its survival. "Trying to figure out how to stop global warming is complex," said Rep. Hans Dunshee, D-Snohomish. "We know it's a problem. How do we deal with it? There are various schools of thought."
ELVIS is not still alive and living in Brazil. The Royal Family had nothing whatsoever to do with Princess Diana's death. And Marilyn Monroe died of nothing more sinister than a drugs overdose. All of which will convey to you that I am not normally one who believes in conspiracy theories. In the absence of evidence to the contrary, the dullest and most obvious explanation is usually the right one. However, I am beginning to join that rebellious group of people who - whisper it - are becoming less, rather than more, convinced of global warming. An enormous industry is growing up and some people are doing very nicely thank-you on the back of climatic change. One can only wonder at the scale of scientific grants. One thing we don't have to wonder about is taxes - any excuse. And the business to be in today is undoubtedly the manufacture of wind turbines and hybrid cars. The most recent alarming report, by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, tells us Glasgow will need 1344 wind turbines by 2050 and Edinburgh's cars will have to be cut by a third. Inverness will have to be a model of eco-brilliance and will have to be forbidden from its planned expansion
The UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change is very particular about the scientists it selects to investigate the health consequences of global warming. Those the likes of Paul Reiter needn't apply.
The actual politics of global warming defies Hollywood's stereotypes. It's not saints vs. sinners. The lifestyles that produce greenhouse gases are deeply ingrained in modern economies and societies. Without major changes in technology, the consequences may be unalterable. Those who believe that addressing global warming is a moral imperative face an equivalent moral imperative to be candid about the costs, difficulties and uncertainties.
I just saw a very inconvenient movie. Not An Inconvenient Truth, starring Al Gore, but a new documentary that aired last week on BBC 4 called The Great Global Warming Swindle. The film is not inconvenient because it predicts environmental disaster, but because it forced me to think heretical thoughts. As Patrick Moore, a founder of Greenpeace, said in the film, questioning the global-warming orthodoxy has become tantamount to denying the Holocaust..................................All this should lead thinking people to at least keep an open mind. But there is more. Global-warming activists have been urging poor countries not to use their coal and oil, but to turn to wind and solar energy instead. This effectively condemns the two billion people now living without electricity to their misery. According to the World Health Organization, four million children under the age of five die each year from the smoke produced by the indoor fires used in homes without electricity. There is nothing wrong with people in rich countries volunteering to cut their carbon emissions, but demanding this of the extreme poor is inhuman. Global warming has become a religion not only in the sense of intolerance toward dissent, but also as the animating moral crusade of our age. Here too, it is not harmless, if environmentalism is allowed to trump ethics. Our children should not be taught that the height and essence of being good is to be green. I'm all for preserving the environment. I would even pay a premium for a hybrid car - not to stop global warming, but simply to cut down on unhealthy and unpleasant smog. But all this should be at the level of good hygiene, not religion. To do good, one must first do no harm. Global-warming extremism, by harming the poorest of the poor and by substituting for real moral causes, fails this test.
A Danish scientist said the idea of a "global temperature" and global warming is more political than scientific. University of Copenhagen Professor Bjarne Andresen has analyzed the topic in collaboration with Canadian Professors Christopher Essex from the University of Western Ontario and Ross McKitrick of the University of Guelph. It is generally assumed the Earth's atmosphere and oceans have grown warmer during the recent 50 years because of an upward trend in the so-called global temperature, which is the result of complex calculations and averaging of air temperature measurements taken around the world. "It is impossible to talk about a single temperature for something as complicated as the climate of Earth," said Andresen, an expert on thermodynamics. "A temperature can be defined only for a homogeneous system. Furthermore, the climate is not governed by a single temperature. Rather, differences of temperatures drive the processes and create the storms, sea currents, thunder, etc. which make up the climate". He says the currently used method of determining the global temperature -- and any conclusion drawn from it -- is more political than scientific. The argument is presented in the Journal of Non-Equilibrium Thermodynamics.
The environmental movement has begun to approach scientific issues with a similar zealotry typically found in religious fanaticism. A case in point: global warming................We need skeptical scientists to keep public and political passions in check. Otherwise, we devolve in our thinking to the point where unverified beliefs, held strong enough, can become idolatry.