First 5 or 6 minutes has strong descriptions of climate impacts, followed by solutions.

Sobering assessment of trends, harsh words for climate deniers. “..those who want to ignore the science, they are increasingly alone, they are on their own shrinking island..”

“..this is not simply a danger to be avoided, this is an opportunity to be siezed..”

“..any leader willing to take a gamble on a future like that..any so-called leader who does not take this issue seriously, or treats it like a joke, is not fit to lead…”

More please.

AP:

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — President Barack Obama is painting a doomsday scenario for the Arctic and beyond if climate change isn’t dealt with fast: entire nations submerged underwater, cities abandoned and refugees fleeing in droves as global conflict breaks out.

It’s a harrowing image of a future that Obama insists is inevitable, unless the world follows his lead by making sweeping cuts to greenhouse gases.

Obama opened his three-day trip Monday with a speech calling global warming an escalating crisis already disturbing Alaskans’ way of life.

“We will condemn our children to a planet beyond their capacity to repair,” Obama said. Alluding ironically to the threat of rising seas, he castigated leaders who deny climate change as “increasingly alone — on their own shrinking island.”

The President mentioned thawing permafrost, warming and acidifying oceans, in the strongest language yet heard from a sitting President on this issue.

nsidc_0901It’s countdown time, as we watch the arctic sea ice drift toward the September minimum.
In March, traditionally the winter high mark, the ice set a record for lowest Maximum extent.
A new record low would be a stretch this year, but it may well be second or third lowest.

A comparison, as of August 17, of the last few years, speaks volumes.

nsidc_augcompare

The predictable climate denial crock around sea ice is,  whenever we have a year that is not a new record low, (which obviously does not happen every year) we hear that sea ice is “recovering”.  Might not work so much this year.

sea_ice3_recoverThe new research described below.

TakePart.com:

The new study, published Monday in the journal Nature Geoscience, advances a growing body of science demonstrating that these record-breaking extremes have not been a pause in the advance of human-driven climate change but a result of it.

Read the rest of this entry »

Description via google translate:

Noon on the lake, as the sunrise on the planet Crematorium.
PZTs.Eto no night is day.
That’s what‘s going on Baikal.

20 percent of the world’s free fresh water is in North America’s 5 Great Lakes. Another 20 percent is in one lake in Siberia, Baikal.

Siberian Times, 27 august:

Russians grieving over damage to magical forests surrounding Siberia’s jewel.

Recent weeks have seen shocking fires around the world’s oldest and deepest lake, home to 20% of the world’s unfrozen freshwater. And after the flames, we can now see all too clearly the desecration of pristine forests rising above Baikal.

Pictures of the fast-spreading fires that we highlight here were taken by Anna Baskakova, posted on 16 August.

Those of the sad aftermath, the evidence of the ruination of the lake’s hinterland, are from Oksana Gromyko, who wrote: ‘We returned to Peschanaya (Sandy) Bay on 24 and 25 August.

baikal1

‘Earlier we had to be evacuated from the bay on 9 August. I felt I just had to get back. ‘I do not comment myself and I’m not asking anyone to express their opinion.
She captioned her pictures reflecting the distraught feelings of many Russians who love this lake.

We also do not comment.

Looking for a quiet, private place to meditate?

NYPost:

PORTSMOUTH, R.I. — A Benedictine monk who works at a private Rhode Island school has discovered that finding solitude is no easy feat, even 175 feet in the air.

Brother Joseph Byron was recently relaxing atop the Portsmouth Abbey School’s wind turbine — as he often does — when a drone zoomed in.

Video taken by the drone, owned by a Californian on vacation, shows Byron sprawled across the turbine’s flat surface, with views of Narragansett Bay in the background. The footage was posted online this week.

Byron told the Providence Journal on Thursday he’s now hearing from everyone on the planet.

He says seeing the drone was a little annoying since he climbs the turbine when he wants to be alone.

Byron has been climbing the turbine since its 2006 installation.

Weird. “..fossil fuels are partly to blame for climate change..”.

?

UPDATE: For what it’s worth, one of the major “fact checking” web sites has now contacted the scientists interviewed here to follow up.

I think this is important.

The other night, we had yet another demonstration of how things go wrong when one of our major political parties decides that they no longer believe in the scientific method.

Rick Santorum, former Senator and current Presidential candidate in the US, appeared on the Bill Maher program.  With the departure of Jon Stewart, Maher is left as one of the few remaining powerful, critical and satiric voices available in the media, and thus the platform is an important one.
Maher quizzed Santorum about climate change, and why it was that Santorum did not believe in the overwhelming consensus, 97 percent, of the science community, who have warned about the human causes of climate change.

Santorum’s response was horrifying, but at least we can take the opportunity to learn from it, as an example of how the alternative universe of climate denial works.

“The most recent survey of climate scientists said, 57 percent don’t agree with the idea that 95 percent of the change in the climate is being caused by man.”

Maher’s response, “Which ass did you pull that out of?”,  was dead-on appropriate.

Since I spend a lot of time looking at asses on this blog, I decided to investigate, using an obscure, antique, and seldom used technique that has fallen out of favor among most professional journalists, –  calling up the author of the survey, and asking him what it really said.

Meet Bart Verheggen.

Another paper that Santorum maligned was the famous “97 percent” paper by John Cook. I spoke to John via skype twice in the last 24 hours, and here’s the first quick cut, more coming.

UPDATE: I had a second chat with John Cook this morning, and he went thru the Santorum statements in more detail.

Read the rest of this entry »

Transcript here.

About that Arctic drilling thing:

This is all real. This is happening to our fellow Americans right now. In fact, Alaska’s governor recently told me that four villages are in “imminent danger” and have to be relocated. Already, rising sea levels are beginning to swallow one island community.Think about that. If another country threatened to wipe out an American town, we’d do everything in our power to protect ourselves. Climate change poses the same threat, right now.

President Obama discussed his upcoming three-day trip to Alaska in this morning’s weekly address, tying the visit tightly to the dangers and challenges of climate change. And while he lauded the nation’s efforts to move to clean energy, he spoke of the need to continue to rely on less-than-clean sources—which led him to discuss his adminstration’s recent decision about letting Shell into the Arctic:

Now even as we accelerate this transition, our economy still has to rely on oil and gas. As long as that’s the case, I believe we should rely more on domestic production than on foreign imports, and we should demand the highest safety standards in the industry – our own. Still, I know there are Americans who are concerned about oil companies drilling in environmentally sensitive waters. Some are also concerned with my administration’s decision to approve Shell’s application to drill a well off the Alaskan coast, using leases they purchased before I took office. I share people’s concerns about offshore drilling. I remember the BP spill in the Gulf of Mexico all too well.

His administration, he told listeners, has “made it clear that Shell has to meet our high standards in how they conduct their operations – and it’s a testament to how rigorous we’ve applied those standards that Shell has delayed and limited its exploration off Alaska while trying to meet them.”

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