Climate

climate change current situation

Who will win the hearts and minds of voters during tough economic times? Sceptics or Scientists?

Climate communication remains the number one issue for the development of climate change policy. You may have noticed a decidedely precipitous drop in the discussion, policy making activity and front page presence of climate change. Check out the reasons why this is so at PBS Frontline TIMELINE: The Politics of Climate Change   

And for an in depth coverage of current funding behind climate change denial, see PBS' balanced but penetrating examination of American political evolution over the past 10 years with respect to climate change policy in the U.S. see PBS FRONTLINE CLIMATE DOUBT

 

CO2 levels May 15 2013

399.74

CO2 levels for last million years

270 - 300

 

We have not won the battle for public education on climate change and the impact of this reality is seen nowhere more clearly than in recent national elections where there is barely a whisper of climate change policy issues. This is the result of well-funded, deliberate misinformation campaigns.

This is why it is so important to not give up on the struggle to get the science out. We are playing politics with our Grandchildren's future and yet this has been stated so many times that it has become banal.

Yale University's Dean of the School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, James Speth, from The Bridge at the End of the World:

  • Atmospheric CO2 data and trendAbout half of the wetlands and a thirdof the mangroves are gone.
  • The rate of deforestation continues at about an acre a second.
  • Half of the world's tropical and temperate forests are now gone.
  • An estimated 90 percent of the large predator fish are gone.
  • Freshwater withdrawals doubled globally between 1960 and 2000.
  • 75 % of marine fisheries are now overfished or fished to capacity.
  • Species are disappearing at rates about a thousand times faster than normal.
  • Persistent toxic chemicals can now be found by the dozens in each and every one of us.

 

Year 1000 population 270 million GDP $120 billion
Year 1820 population 1 billion GDP $690 billion
Year 2000 population 6 billion GDP $40 trillion
Year 2050 projected GDP $160 trillion

 

As we can see from the CO2Now's greenhouse gascounter, CO2 levels are now higher than at any time since they were first directly measured and they are now rapidly increasing.

Current CO2 levels, which increase each time I sit down to write about climate change, and which are presently above 390 ppm, are far, far higher today than at any time in the last 800,000 years of empirical measurements and higher too, than at any time in the last 2 million years when using both proxy and empirical measurements.

Climate RefugeesThere is no dubious science here, there has been no unraveling of climate science provoked by ClimateGate. We know the CO2 record with certainty from our measurements of atmospheric CO2levels and  global temperature markers in Antarctic ice cores, while the proxy evidence simply becomes ever more compelling.

We are constantly monitoring temperatures, both on land and at the sea surface, on an increasingly extensive scale. The Planet is warming just as the IPCC science indicated. The global temperature for May 2010 was 15.50C, which is nearly 0.70C above our global temperature records for the last century.

Our targets to stabilize the global atmosphere are to reduce carbon emissions by bringing down CO2 levels to 350 ppm, so that we may avoid a global temperature increase of an additional 2 degrees.

Currently we are nowhere near on track to meeting these targets. International conventions and national governments are not delivering the goods required to moderate global warming.

One reason for current political inaction is simply the state of public polling on climate change which reveals that approximately half of the developed world's populations do not support progressive climate strategies. The reasons for this are many and complex but one of the reasons is that climate science has been very poorly explained to the various public audiences.

This is due, in part, to the fact that there are fewer working climate science communicators. Which is a key factor in why this site exists. We do not, however, simplistically think that an injection of science information will automatically result in publics which side more frequently with climate strategies. Clearly, public opinions and values are more complex than this.

We do know, that without the basics of climate science explained in a crystal clear manner, there cannot even begin to be a dialogue on appropriate climate strategies.

This is one of the main mission goals for this site. For starters, read our Paper:

The 2013 Number One Climate Issue: where is the political support for climate change strategies?

 

 

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