Bring on the global governance: form of environmental regulatory infrastructure

Posted on September 28th, 2009 by bile
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http://arstechnica.com/…

A major environmental disaster may no longer be a question of if, but when, according to a growing number of leading scientists. The multiple threats posed by unrestricted climate change, ozone depletion, and pollution, among others, has made the need for some form of global regulatory infrastructure more urgent than ever. Yet, as the recent G20 summit climate talks made resoundingly clear, the road there will be long, arduous, and full of half-hearted compromises.

Not surprising… just frustrating. This problem can be fixed through the re-enforcement of private property rights. Stop allowing the government to pollute, stop allowing the government to give passes to individuals to pollute, and turn over government owned land to the private sector to foster real, natural incentives to protect that land.

The Yes Men release another “Special Edition” paper

Posted on September 21st, 2009 by bile
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http://nypost-se.com

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 21, 2009

“WE’RE SCREWED”: MEDIA HEIST BLANKETS CITY WITH “SPECIAL EDITION” NEW YORK POST
Tabloid Tells Truth About Climate Change and How It Will Affect City, World

Contact: The Yes Men <mailto:tabloid@theyesmen.org>, 347-254-7054, 646-220-4137
Fake New York Post: http://www.nypost-se.com/
Video News Release: http://www.nypost-se.com/video
City report on climate change: http://www.nyc.gov/html/om/pdf/2009/NPCC_CRI.pdf
Wake-up call: http://www.tcktcktck.org/wakeup

Early this morning, nearly a million New Yorkers were stunned by the appearance of a “special edition” New York Post blaring headlines that their city could face deadly heat waves, extreme flooding, and other lethal effects of global warming within the next few decades. The most alarming thing about it: the news came from an official City report.

Distributed by over 2000 volunteers throughout New York City, the paper has been created by The Yes Men and a coalition of activists as a wake-up call to action on climate change. It appears one day before a UN summit where Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon will push 100 world leaders to make serious commitments to reduce carbon emissions in the lead-up to the Copenhagen climate conference in December. Ban has said that the world has “less than 10 years to halt (the) global rise in greenhouse gas emissions if we are to avoid catastrophic consequences for people and the planet,” adding that Copenhagen is a “once-in-a-generation opportunity.”

Although the 32-page New York Post is a fake, everything in it is 100% true, with all facts carefully checked by a team of editors and climate change experts.

“This could be, and should be, a real New York Post,” said Andy Bichlbaum of the Yes Men. “Climate change is the biggest threat civilization has ever faced, and it should be in the headlines of every paper, every day until we solve the problem.”

The fake Post’s cover story (“We’re Screwed”) reports the frightening conclusions of a blue-ribbon panel of scientists commissioned by the mayor’s office to determine the potential effects of climate change on the City. That report was released in February of this year, but received very little press at the time.

Other lead articles describe the Pentagon’s alarmed response to global warming (“Clear & Present Disaster”), the U.S. government’s sadly minuscule response to the crisis (“Congress Cops Out on Climate”), China’s alternative energy program (“China’s Green Leap Forward Overtakes U.S.”), and how if the US doesn’t quickly pass a strong climate bill, the crucial Copenhagen climate talks this December could be a “Flopenhagen.”

The paper includes original investigative reporting as well. One article (“Carbon counter counts New Yorkers as fools”) reveals that Deutsche Bank – which erected a seven-story “carbon counter” in central Manhattan – not only invests heavily in coal-mining companies worldwide, but has recently entered the business of coal trading itself.

The paper has the world’s gloomiest weather page, covering the next 70 years rather than just 7 days. The “Around the World” section describes the disproportionate effects of climate change on poorer parts of the world, including extreme droughts, floods, famines, water shortages, mass migrations and conflicts. Developing countries will bear the brunt of climate change effects even though they have done very little to cause the problem.

But the paper isn’t all doom and gloom. An article called “New York Fights Back” notes that the carbon emissions of Big Apple residents are only one third the national average, and that the city is building 1800 miles of bike paths, planting one million trees, and replacing its fleet of police cars with hybrids. There’s also a page of black-humor cartoons (in one, Charlie Brown finds Snoopy drowned), a gossip section that takes no prisoners, and a number of truly cheerful ads – for sex (“Awesome. No carbon emissions.”), tote bags, bicycles, and tap water (“Literally comes right out of your faucet!”).

Another ad promotes civil disobedience, encouraging readers to visit http://BeyondTalk.net and pledge to risk arrest in a planned global action November 30, just before the conference in Copenhagen.

“We need strong action on climate change,” said David Solnit of Mobilization for Climate Justice West, one of the partners in BeyondTalk.net. “But history shows that leaders act only when people take to the streets to demand it. That’s what needs to happen now.”

This paper is one of 2500 initiatives taking place in more than 130 countries as a response to the “Global Wake-up Call” on climate change.  For more information, visit www.tcktcktck.org/wakeup

Even if their concern is warranted, which I seriously question, the means they advocate will not make things better but surely make them worse for us all. Remove government regulations restricting the market from developing cleaner solutions, remove government subsidies and most importantly… start enforcing property rights.

Ron Paul responds to reddit.com users

Posted on September 10th, 2009 by bile
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Paul Krugman calls those against Waxman-Markey climate change bill treasonous against the planet

Posted on June 29th, 2009 by bile
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http://www.nytimes.com/…

So the House passed the Waxman-Markey climate-change bill. In political terms, it was a remarkable achievement.

But 212 representatives voted no. A handful of these no votes came from representatives who considered the bill too weak, but most rejected the bill because they rejected the whole notion that we have to do something about greenhouse gases.

And as I watched the deniers make their arguments, I couldn’t help thinking that I was watching a form of treason — treason against the planet.

To fully appreciate the irresponsibility and immorality of climate-change denial, you need to know about the grim turn taken by the latest climate research.

I keep fairly up to date on the latest information regarding climate change and I’m still not convinced of the extent to which humans have influenced the climate. The lists of scientists which oppose the politically correct version of anthropogenic global warming climate change grows larger and larger all the time. Regardless of whether or not global climate change is man made the solution is more freedom and property rights protection rather then less. It is fascism and collectivism which has lead to the increase in pollution and use of oil. The government is the largest polluter, excuses other polluters and subsidizes organizations which the free market likely wouldn’t had invested in.

The Age of Stupid

Posted on February 19th, 2009 by bile
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http://climateandcapitalism.com/…

The Age of Stupid is a 90-minute film about climate change, set in the future, which will have its world premiere in London on March 15 and then be released in UK cinemas on March 20, followed by other countries.

  • “Every single person in the country should be forcibly made to watch this film.” Ken Livingstone, former Mayor of London
  • “I defy anyone to come out and not feel like they’ve got to make a difference.” Caroline Lucas, Leader of the UK Green Party
  • “It is not a film to make you happy. It’s a film to make you sit back and think ‘What is my role on this planet?’“ Ashok Sinha, Director of Stop Climate Chaos coalition
  • “The most powerful piece of cultural discourse on climate change ever produced.” Mark Lynas, author of “Six Degrees: Our Future on a Hotter Planet”
  • “It is a captivating and constantly surprising film: the first successful dramatisation of climate change to reach the big screen.” George Monbiot, journalist & author

Sorry to lob an ad-hominem comment but… I’m not going to trust anything at face value that the likes of those listed above rave about. They don’t exactly have the most neutral background on the global warming / climate change topic. I don’t see anything in the trailer that implies this is anything more than a stereotypical eco-statist / leftist diatribe attempting to appeal to emotions rather than truth.

The Age of Stupid? Rather harsh. History will show who was ignorant, close minded, and/or short sighted. For all our sake I hope its those who made and agree with the premise of this film. I fear the outcome of the proposed statist solutions far more than the actual outcome of any global warming. Anthropogenic or otherwise.

Consistency for its own sake isn’t science: Satellite sensor drift cause sea ice coverage analysis errors

Posted on February 19th, 2009 by bile
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http://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/

As some of our readers have already noticed, there was a significant problem with the daily sea ice data images on February 16. The problem arose from a malfunction of the satellite sensor we use for our daily sea ice products. Upon further investigation, we discovered that starting around early January, an error known as sensor drift caused a slowly growing underestimation of Arctic sea ice extent. The underestimation reached approximately 500,000 square kilometers (193,000 square miles) by mid-February. Sensor drift, although infrequent, does occasionally occur and it is one of the things that we account for during quality control measures prior to archiving the data. See below for more details.

We have removed the most recent data and are investigating alternative data sources that will provide correct results. It is not clear when we will have data back online, but we are working to resolve the issue as quickly as possible.

Sensor drift is a perfect but unfortunate example of the problems encountered in near-real-time analysis. We stress, however, that this error in no way changes the scientific conclusions about the long-term decline of Arctic sea ice, which is based on the the consistent, quality-controlled data archive discussed above.

Some people might ask why we don’t simply switch to the EOS AMSR-E sensor. AMSR-E is a newer and more accurate passive microwave sensor. However, we do not use AMSR-E data in our analysis because it is not consistent with our historical data. Thus, while AMSR-E gives us greater accuracy and more confidence on current sea ice conditions, it actually provides less accuracy on the long-term changes over the past thirty years. There is a balance between being as accurate as possible at any given moment and being as consistent as possible through long time periods.

I fully understand the issues with calibration, drift, real-time data collection, etc. I agree that it can and will happen. Ignoring for a moment their statement about consistency for a moment I’d have say I have no problems with events like this. Shit happens. The problem is with the religious fanaticism of the eco-statists. Just as a news paper correction is almost always lost and forgotten relative to the original headline… data like this has more often than I’d like been used as legitimate. “Skeptics” who doubt the data are often lumped into the “deniers” group with flat-earthers and Holocaust deniers. Hyperbolic and ad-hominem statements incongruous with real science.

About real science and consistency. Perhaps its just the way they explained it but they seem to be advocating using potentially inaccurate data for the sake of consistency. As if they have their conclusion set and they want the closest data set available to match it. That’s not science. If historical data does not match current and supposedly more accurate data they need to find out why the historical data is off or why explain why the supposedly more accurate data isn’t.

It is the far too regular fuck ups, slight of hand, outright lies and political influences which make the whole global warming global climate change topic so controversial and people like myself so skeptical.