Sunday, October 14, 2007

Elsewhere: science, global warming,and Gore

Excellent: stages of scientific progress

Short video in which our favorite science teacher takes an updated look at global warming (a.k.a. global climate destabilization) in terms of risk analysis:

And please watch this (considerably longer) Jan 2006 Gore speech to the American Constitution Society.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Gore, Doerr and activism

You heard it here last: Gore wins Nobel Peace Prize. Today's NY Times editorial -
[I]t shouldn’t have to be left to a private citizen - even one so well known as Mr. Gore - or a panel of scientists to raise that [climate crisis] alarm, or prove what is now clearly an undeniable link, or champion solutions to a problem that endangers the entire planet.

That should be, and must be the job of governments. And governments - above all the Bush administration - have failed miserably.
We cannot afford to squander any more time.
Video of Gore's press appearance, after winning the Nobel Prize -

He's not ruling it out.
Run, Al, Run!

I have maintained previously that I'm not an activist, but for some causes that's a luxury we can't afford - "Don't expect to live in a democracy if you're not prepared to be an active citizen.*" So for the most important concerns - our climate, and our freedoms - activism it's gonna be. I'll be out collecting signatures for the Draft Gore movement.

"Entrepreneurs do more than anyone thinks possible with less than anyone thinks possible."
See this video of Silicon Valley venture capitalist John Doerr's TED talk, Seeking salvation and profit in greentech - it's powerful, and offers a different perspective from what we typically see in Nevada County. Doerr cares about his daughter's future, and has the financial tools to play a significant role in shaping it, and exhorts us to join him in doing so. Excerpts -
There is a time when panic is the appropriate response, and we've reached that time. We can not afford to underestimate this problem.

The best way to predict the future is to invent it; the second best way is to finance it.
...[his co. is] investing $200 million in a wide range of technologies for disruptive innovation in green technologies...
geothermal could supply us for a thousand years; yet the fed budget calls for only $20 million R&D in geothermal
We need to reduce CO2 emissions by 1/2, as fast as possible
[A representative from China pointed out:] "Americans use 7 times the CO2 per capita as Chinese. Why should China sacrifice our growth so that the West can continue to be profligate and stupid?" does anyone here have an answer for him?

Energy is a 6 trillion dollar business worldwide, it is the mother of all markets. Do you remember the Internet? Green technologies, going green is bigger than the Internet - it could be the biggest economic opportunity of the 21st century.

[and if we don't do it...]
Several persons - your correspondent among them - were not dry-eyed at the end.

In Gore's U.N. speech he made the point that decades from now our children will be asking us one of two things:
What were you thinking - why didn't you act?
How did you find the moral courage to rise and solve this crisis that so many said was impossible to solve?

Let's get moving. Our house is burning.

Sun. update - since the demagogues' smear-o-rama can't abide leaders, the smears on Gore have returned - read about them here.
Also - see what Gore did during Katrina; and, if you'd like, compare and contrast...

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Local climate denialist Russ Steele edits, censors, deletes comments?

Does he? The evidence points that way.

One comment I submitted Sept 30, in which I asked commenter "Anthony" (who appears to be "Surface Stations" Anthony Watts) for a disclosure statement, initially survived moderation but later was deleted. Russ said this deletion occurred inadvertently as he was editing my comment to remove Anthony's last name (which raises another question*...which also didn't survive moderation), but curiously, my resubmitted comment - in which I'd helpfully removed Anthony's last name - did not appear either.

Others appear to have been deep-sixed as well, including this response to Russ's post "Yes, the sun really is creating global warming" extolling a paper by Svensmark and Friis-Christensen. My comment (which quotes from Russ's post):

> [Russ Steele said:] "Physicist Henrik Svensmark and Eigil Friis-Christensen, Danish National Space Center, defending their position in a peer reviewed study. There most recent study: Reply to Lockwood and Fröhlich (PDF)"...

The climatologists' blog today covers this paper, concluding that "...all the evidence goes against the notion that GCR[galactic cosmic rays] are the cause of the present global warming"


> "A paper by Ken Gregory, Friends of Science Society, Calgary, Alberta, Canada..."

Sourcewatch on the (oil industry backed) Friends of Science Society. Ought to be renamed - with friends like that...

> "Another look at the Lockwood/Frochlich paper by SPPI Staff here, who conclude:..."

Sourcewatch on the Science and Public Policy Institute (SPPI) ("the content of the website draws heavily on papers written by Christopher Monckton. However, the SPPI website also lists a number of other prominent climate change skeptics...." [including D'Aleo])

Very entertaining and revealing recent email correspondence between Monckton and George Monbiot, Did Lord Monckton fabricate a claim on his Wikipedia page?

Credibility matters, except to the gullible.

Russ, please, wake up. Your children's house is burning.

And here's my saw-the-light-of-day-but-submerged-again comment responding to "Anthony" (presumably Anthony Watts) in these comments:
re weatherman Anthony Watts's
> "your lack of understanding of the scientific method is clear now"

Anthony, please review Science vs. Faith, and consider which investigative algorithm you employ.

Anthony, I'd really like to know - what's your position now on the recent (last 40 years) global warming - do you still think that it's caused by the sun, and if so, by what mechanism or correlation - solar rays? sunspot cycles? something else?
(and do you have peer-reviewed evidence for this belief, or is it faith-based?)

And Anthony, have you ever received compensation, whether monetary or nonmonetary, whether directly or indirectly, in exchange for engaging in PR(Public Relations) activities?

More to come, when I have time.

And, dear reader, if you have time, I spent considerable time over at Russ's denialist blog in September, investigating each claim he made and, typically, only needing a minute of Googling to find it was bogus. Please feel free to drop by there and browse through that month of posts and comments. Somewhat naively, I had thought that I might be able to get through to him...but I can't.