Ponder Climate Change Denial


Rampant denial of humanity’s contribution to climate change explains why I’ve been called an “eco-clown” and “nutstoponder”. Republican Senator James Inhofe of Oklahoma can toss a snowball across the Senate floor, declaring  “God is still up there, and He promised to maintain the seasons and that cold and heat would never cease as long as the earth remains, the arrogance of people to think that we, human beings, would be able to change what He is doing in the climate is to me outrageous,” and I’m the delusional nutter taking exception to   Wisconsin Koch puppet Scott Walker “scrubbing” public Natural Resource websites of references to man made climate change. We’re asked to believe Trump’s appointment of Scott Pruitt to head the EPA will restore American greatness, and I’m the nutter.

Links to refresh your memory –

https://notestoponder.wordpress.com/2014/05/15/the-world-according-to-koch/

https://notestoponder.wordpress.com/2015/03/09/senate-snowball/

https://notestoponder.wordpress.com/2016/12/15/american-environmental-research-scramble/

Still in denial? Ponder these short videos –

 

 

American Environmental Research Scramble


America has been dead to me since election night. Self preservation prescribed absolute avoidance of U.S. media. Hearing his voice, seeing that orange face, reacting to Trumpish ascension without blind rage, perfectly good reasons to wash hands of the sordid affair. All well and good until ambushed by CBC radio this afternoon. But for missing that last green light, I might have been out of the vehicle when “U.S. scientists are scrambling to archive environmental research in Canada before Trump inauguration” shot resolve to smithereens. Oh crap! I knew Trump appointed climate denier Scott Pruitt to head the EPA, now I had to look into the impetus of a news bomb.

Oh man, if knowledge were power America wouldn’t be facing the likes of Scott Pruitt. Ponder Pruitt’s environmental legacy below, followed by a link to “Meet Scott Pruitt”-

May 2011: As Oklahoma Attorney General, Scott Pruitt sues the EPA, alleging that the federal agency violated its own procedures in rejecting a state plan to reduce regional haze at three coal plants. In May 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court declined to review Pruitt’s challenge of the EPA’s plan for reducing haze. The EPA’s plan is designed to reduce pollution from coal-fired power plants and industrial sources to improve visibility at federally managed wilderness areas such as the 59,000-acre Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge near Lawton.

It would target coal-fired power plants operated by Oklahoma Gas and Electric Co. at Red Rock and Muskogee and another operated by American Electric Power-Public Service Company of Oklahoma at Oologah.

September 2011: Oklahoma joins other states in challenging an EPA regulation of power-plant air pollution that crosses state lines. In 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the cross-state air pollution rule, which is scheduled to take effect in May 2017.

July 2013: Pruitt and his counterparts in 11 other states sue the EPA in federal court, alleging violations of the Freedom of Information Act. The states sued after the EPA denied a request for communication records between the federal agency and nonprofit environmental groups. Pruitt claimed that the agency encourages certain types of lawsuits by nonprofit environmental organizations, such as Greenpeace, Defenders of Wildlife, WildEarth Guardians and the Sierra Club. The EPA then settles the suits by entering consent decrees that contain obligations not found in federal law, Pruitt claimed.

A district judge dismissed the lawsuit in December 2013, siding with the EPA’s claims that the records request was overly broad and vague.

April 2014: Pruitt sent a letter to the EPA’s Office of the Inspector General, questioning plans to evaluate how the agency and states have done in regulating hydraulic fracturing.

“I am concerned that this project is politically motivated and ignores the EPA’s three previous failed attempts to link hydraulic fracturing to water contamination,” Pruitt wrote. “The U.S. Department of Energy has investigated hydraulic fracturing’s potential harm to water supplies and found no evidence linking the drilling technique to groundwater contamination.”

August 2014: Pruitt joined 11 other states in a suit challenging the Environmental Protection Agency’s regulation of greenhouse gases. Filed in the District of Columbia Circuit Court of Appeals, the suit specifically seeks to throw out a 2011 settlement in a lawsuit brought against the EPA by 12 states, the District of Columbia and three environmental organizations. In the settlement, the EPA agreed to begin regulation of greenhouse gases under the Clean Air Act.

July 2015: Pruitt sues the EPA in Tulsa federal court over the agency’s plan to rein in pollution from coal-fired power plants. In a news release, Pruitt described the EPA’s Clean Power Plan as “an unlawful attempt to expand federal bureaucrats’ authority over states’ energy economies in order to shutter coal-fired power plants and eventually other sources of fossil-fuel generated electricity.” The lawsuit was later dismissed by a judge on jurisdictional grounds.

July 2015: Pruitt files a lawsuit in Tulsa federal court challenging the EPA’s new rules governing pollution controls on waters governed by the Clean Water Act. A judge later dismissed the lawsuit on jurisdictional grounds. An appeal is pending.

October 2015: Pruitt joins 26 other states in challenging the EPA’s Clean Power Plan rules just after they became effective. The new rules require states to cut carbon emissions by 30 percent by 2030. Each state has a customized target and is responsible for drawing up an effective plan to meet its goal. All but two of the state challenges were filed by Republicans. The case is still pending in U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.

August 2016: Pruitt joined a dozen other states in a lawsuit challenging federal regulations for methane emissions from new equipment at oil and natural gas sites. The rules are part of the Obama administration’s goal to cut methane emissions from the oil and gas industry more than 40 percent from 2012 levels by 2025.

http://www.sierraclub.org/sierra/green-life/meet-scott-pruitt-man-picked-lead-epa

http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/scientists-copy-climate-data-fearing-trump-raze-article-1.2909960

Scott Pruitt is buddies with James Inhofe, fellow Okkie and Republican chair of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, the genius who tossed a snowball on the senate floor as proof God exists, climate change is a hoax, the politician who declared “God is still up there, and He promised to maintain the seasons and that cold and heat would never cease as long as the earth remains.” https://notestoponder.wordpress.com/2015/03/09/senate-snowball/

Scott Pruitt is why U.S. climate researchers scramble to preserve data before Trump’s buffoons assume positions of power.

 

 

Senate Snowball


You’ve gotta love American politics, only in America would the head of the Environment and Public Works Committee saunter onto the Senate floor with snowball in hand. James Inhofe, Republican Senator from Oklahoma, chairman manning the helm of environmental issues, had a point to make. This wasn’t just any snowball, it was proof God existed and climate change was a hoax.

“God is still up there, and He promised to maintain the seasons and that cold and heat would never cease as long as the earth remains.”

“The arrogance of people to think that we, human beings, would be able to change what He is doing in the climate is to me outrageous,” he said.

Inhofe isn’t content with jurisdiction over environment – he published a book titled The Greatest Hoax, urging readers to ignore science (dubbed alarmists) because a greater “Authority” has already spoken.

Over the past few days I’ve been called “eco-tard” “nuts to ponder” “ignorant clown” “climate fetishist” “moronic liberal” “parroting lies of liars” – and those are just the nice names. More than one of these people supported venom with links to The Greatest Hoax.

All I can say is “good luck America” and have a nice day.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/03/06/jim-inhofe-genesis_n_6815270.html

 

Saving Ozone


Today is an environmental landmark – on January 23, 1972 Sweden became the first country to ban aerosol sprays. Reacting to scientific concerns chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) damaged the ozone layer, Sweden’s swift action set the stage for a world-wide ban.

Visionary Swedes abolished CFCs before science discovered the Antarctic ozone hole – ponder decisive environmental action based solely on reputable concern. Spared decades of irreparable damage at the hands of anti-ozone propaganda machines – Sweden stepped up in the interest of us all. America followed in October of 1978.  On January 1, 1989 the Montreal Protocol took effect. Officially the “Montreal Protocol on Substances That Deplete the Ozone Layer” – a global treaty signed by almost every nation, effectively abolished use of CFCs.

Did it work? The answer is a cautious slowly but surely. Since the mid 90s, Antarctic ozone holes have “stabilized” – that in itself an environmental victory. Optimistic science predicts recovery by 2050-2070.

This is where I get worked up – switching from CFCs to other propellents or pump action dispensers might have been mildly inconvenient, yet hardly broke the bank or put vast numbers of corporate interests in financial jeopardy.  The world played nice, behaving responsibly because alternatives didn’t bankrupt the bottom line. We took science at its word – our ozone was in danger, anything less than responsible action became out of the question.

Harmful carbon dioxide levels are an entirely different matter. Look no further than the failed Kyoto Accord – a global treaty to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, systematically dropped by worst offending powerhouse nations. China and the U.S. – awarded dubious distinction of first and second worst offenders, with 27% and 14% of global greenhouse gas production, can’t even be bothered to go through the motions. Neither country participates in 2001 talks to adopt the protocol. A statement released by America’s Environmental Protection Agency states, “the Bush administration has no interest in implementing the Kyoto Protocol”.

Protecting ozone passed with nary a whimper – everyone’s on board when environmental salvation doesn’t rattle big business, irrefutable science was good enough for ozone.  Dare  apply logic to greenhouse gas and climate change – suddenly science is ruled by nincompoops.

Ponder climate change denial – ask yourself who stands to lose, and who spends exorbitant amounts of money on denying the obvious.

http://earthsky.org/earth/this-date-in-science-sweden-goes-first-to-ban-aerosol-sprays?utm_source=EarthSky+News&utm_campaign=3c6cfe3904-EarthSky_News&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_c643945d79-3c6cfe3904-393970565

Climate Change and The Taliban


What does climate change mean,  how do people define global warming? Do we think of melting ice caps in terms of rising ocean levels, threatened animal habitats, violent unpredictable weather? Do we think about it at all? Are we confused by anti warming propaganda, suspicious of scientific proof? How many ponder a connection between climate change and the Taliban?

Founded in 1994 by Mohammed Omar, iron fist Taliban fundamentalism seized control of Afghanistan in 1996. Brutal Taliban justice, horrific oppression of women, terrorist agendas, outraged the global community long before 9/11. One of the first Taliban edicts – eradicate all opium poppy fields as an offense to Islam. From 1996 to the American ousting of Taliban rule in 2001, Afghan farmers who once supplied of 60% of world heroin, grew wheat crops.

Unfortunately 2001 coincided with a period of unprecedented drought in Afghanistan. Devastated farmers had families to feed – the Taliban needed money, soldiers and safe havens. Fragmented Taliban forces came up with a solution. In exchange for “taxes”, recruits and absolute indifference to caching weapons or hiding insurgents, they would protect impoverished farmers choice of crops. Opium poppies thrive on 1/6th the water of wheat.  Drought resistant poppies sustained a population whose only choice became Taliban loyalty or starvation.

Far from suggesting Afghanistan’s untimely drought was a direct result of climate change – it’s worth considering implications beyond rising sea levels. Religious fundamentalists outlawed opium poppies when rain fell, weaponized poppies by allowing starving farmers to plant them in exchange for loyalty.

Ponder climate change as a weapon. Consider ramifications of weaponizing crops We can ignore mind numbing climate change rhetoric, or wrap our heads around drought and Taliban support.

 

Extreme Climates


Mention global warming or climate change –  most people think of temperatures increasing world-wide. According to researchers at Northwestern University in Boston, Mass. 97% of the scientific community agrees – the planet is heating up due to burning fossil fuels and deforestation. The tricky part is predicting “variability”, the difference between hottest and coldest temperatures from year to year.

Evan Kodra and Auroop Ganguly of Northwestern, published a paper July 30 in Scientific Reports, it outlined research data from Ganguly”s Sustainability and Data Sciences Laboratory. Research pointing to wider swings in hot and cold temperatures. In a nutshell – global temperatures are rising, at the same time, we can expect far greater swings between hot/cold in any given place.

For the first time, research looked at science behind a particularly hot summer with accelerated ice cap melt, and how that translates to extreme cold snaps in winter. Phenomenon like the Polar Vortex of last winter – all symptoms of global warming.

“Just because you have a year that’s colder than the usual over the last decade isn’t a rejec­tion of the global warming hypoth­esis.” – Evan Kodra

http://earthsky.org/earth/more-heat-waves-and-cold-snaps-ahead

Climate is changing – anyone who pictures balmy winters fading gently into early springs or glorious extended summers keeping first frosts at bay ought to think again. Climate change will be defined by extremes – storms of the Century or “100 year floods”, replaced with “events” of the decade, and soon storm of the year or month.

Ponder what you know about global warming – next, ask yourself where the majority of information comes from. Consider Donars Trust aka Donors Capital Fund – between 2000 and 2010 collecting over $120 million in private donations – money used to fund over 100 “think tanks” and conservative right wing action groups – their sole purpose to deny climate change, create enough confusion and polarization to “create a wedge”, prevent legislated reduction of greenhouse gasses and above all – prevent the Obama administration from initiating climate change legislation.

“We exist to help donors promote liberty which we understand to be limited government, personal responsibility, and free enterprise,” – Whitney Ball CEO of Donars Trust

http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2013/feb/14/funding-climate-change-denial-thinktanks-network

I could list dozens of anti-climate propaganda mongers – dangerously elevated blood pressure isn’t worth hammering down the point. Suffice to say, misguided bat shit libertarians have us by the balls – if society is too lazy to figure it out, we deserve what’s coming.