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Or, similar question, “Why is the Green New deal?”

Answer is that, there is no legislation yet. Turns out this kind of massive program is really, really, really hard to put together.
To do it, we’re going to have to do a whole lot more than tweet-shame Nancy Pelosi – we, all of us, are going to have to get involved with the process and push from the grass-roots – because the alternative is simply too grim to consider.

The insights I got from Rob Meyer in December are still cogent.

One of the best arguments for transitioning to renewable, distributed energy, is the national security factor.
A grid that is more dispersed and diverse, that looks more like the internet, will be inherently more resilient to disruption in the age of terrorism, cyber-hacking, and extreme weather.

And the Russians. As a new piece in the New York Times shows, we are in an era where the balance of terror includes having a finger on a nation’s lightswitch.

In the article below, very telling paragraph near the end:

Pentagon and intelligence officials described broad hesitation to go into detail with Mr. Trump about operations against Russia for concern over his reaction — and the possibility that he might countermand it or discuss it with foreign officials, as he did in 2017 when he mentioned a sensitive operation in Syria to the Russian foreign minister.

New York Times:

WASHINGTON — The United States is stepping up digital incursions into Russia’s electric power grid in a warning to President Vladimir V. Putin and a demonstration of how the Trump administration is using new authorities to deploy cybertools more aggressively, current and former government officials said.

In interviews over the past three months, the officials described the previously unreported deployment of American computer code inside Russia’s grid and other targets as a classified companion to more publicly discussed action directed at Moscow’s disinformation and hacking units around the 2018 midterm elections.

Advocates of the more aggressive strategy said it was long overdue, after years of public warnings from the Department of Homeland Security and the F.B.I. that Russia has inserted malware that could sabotage American power plants, oil and gas pipelines, or water supplies in any future conflict with the United States.

But it also carries significant risk of escalating the daily digital Cold War between Washington and Moscow.

The administration declined to describe specific actions it was taking under the new authorities, which were granted separately by the White House and Congress last year to United States Cyber Command, the arm of the Pentagon that runs the military’s offensive and defensive operations in the online world.

But in a public appearance on Tuesday, President Trump’s national security adviser, John R. Bolton, said the United States was now taking a broader view of potential digital targets as part of an effort “to say to Russia, or anybody else that’s engaged in cyberoperations against us, ‘You will pay a price.’”

Power grids have been a low-intensity battleground for years.

Since at least 2012, current and former officials say, the United States has put reconnaissance probes into the control systems of the Russian electric grid.

But now the American strategy has shifted more toward offense, officials say, with the placement of potentially crippling malware inside the Russian system at a depth and with an aggressiveness that had never been tried before. It is intended partly as a warning, and partly to be poised to conduct cyberstrikes if a major conflict broke out between Washington and Moscow.

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Frank Luntz is a well known Republican pollster, and author of a key road map from the early 2000s for Republican office holders on how to delay meaningful action on climate. So, yeah, he’s a monster.

He has results to new polling data showing that even in the dim Fox-addled reaches of the GOP, climate has become an important issue, and one for which there is a popular solution.
Above, PBS interview from 2007.

The Hill:

Prominent GOP pollster Frank Luntz is warning Republican lawmakers that the public’s views on climate change are shifting and that ignoring the issue could cost them important votes at the ballot box.

In a memo circulated to Republican congressional offices on Wednesday, Luntz Global Partners warned that 58 percent of Americans, as well as 58 percent of GOP voters under the age of 40, are more concerned about climate change than they were just one year ago.

The polling group also noted that 69 percent of GOP voters are concerned that the party’s stance on climate change is “hurting itself with younger votes.”

Of the GOP voters under the age of 40, more than half, or 55 percent, said they are “very or extremely” concerned about their party’s position on climate change.

“Climate Change is a GOP VULNERABILITY and a GOP OPPORTUNITY,” read a copy of the memo obtained by The Hill. “Yes, Republican voters want a solution. It is on measures of salience to vote that we have detected the greatest change.”

“The appetite for seeing real action is palpable to voters of both sides,” the memo states.

Referring to a listening session with likely voters, the memo said many are angered that GOP leadership “ceded the issue to the Dems.”

“Typically, the most effective campaign approach is to build-out from the base. … Not here; there’s simply too much recognition that the politicking has blocked Progress,” the group said in the memo.

Luntz Memo on Climate Strategy:

  1. I. Climate Change is a GOP VULNERABILITY and a GOP OPPORTUNITY… Yes, Republican voters want a solution

It is on measures of salience to vote that we have detected the greatest change. 58% of Americans – including 58% of GOP voters under 40 – are more concerned about climate change now than they were only one year ago. The appetite for seeing real action is palpable to voters of both sides. This underlying fact sets the stage for the country and defines the political landscape for climate change. 

69% of GOP voters are concerned their party is ‘hurting itself with younger voters’ by its climate stance. Meanwhile, 55% of GOP voters under 40 are ‘very or extremely’ concerned about their party’s position on climate change. In the listening sessions, we heard real anger that leadership has ‘ceded the issue to the Dems.’ 

  1. II. In the age of ‘partisan divide,’ this is the ONE area where BI-PARTISANSHIP trumps everything else

Typically, the most effective campaign approach is to build-out from the base… Not here; there’s simply too much recognition that the politicking has blocked progress. Even in our current political atmosphere, 80% of all American voters say it’s important for any national climate solution to be bipartisan

Americans across the country are looking to see real leadership that can spearhead a bipartisan solution to climate change. These feelings are set to carry to the ballot box. Most American voters (65%), including a majority of Republicans (53%), have said they would be more likely to support a candidate who supported Carbon Dividends. In other words, this plan – in stark contrast to the ‘Green New Deal’ – has significant, measurable impact on Vote

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European Commission tweet features my friend Stephen Lewandowsky, Australian psychologist and expert on persuasion techniques. Here, Stephen points out an obvious warning sign of cyber propaganda.

Dr. Lewandowsky is featured in my video on this topic from 2 years ago, on best practices for climate (or any) myth busting and communication.

A few months ago, I posted a piece, based on interviews with leading permafrost experts, that pushed back, hard, on the “we’re all gonna die and there’s nothing we can do” catastrophism around the so-called “methane bomb” in the arctic. (I’ll repost that one below if you have not seen it)

That’s not to say that we don’t have a problem. When people tell me that the world is about to end, my response is that we’re not getting off that easy.
Above, more from the same researchers, looking at a little more fine grained data from the permafrost – and observations of a phenomenon that is coming into sharper focus.
As the planet warms, permafrost is softening, causing microbes to awaken and begin feeding on the organic matter therein – releasing more CO2 and methane. Good enough – but a lot of folks don’t understand that THAT process alone is not a world breaker – in fact, as more vegetation springs from softened permafrost, photosynthesis is kicking in – carbon is being stored, and in some models, actually sequestering more carbon.

The more pressing issue coming into focus is that the permafrost does not melt uniformly, and tends to collapse here and there into thousands, maybe millions, of lakes – that break through the surface “active layer” of the permafrost, and into the reservoir of more deeply stored carbon.
These lakes are hot-spots of carbon and methane release, and could add substantially to the total output in coming centuries.
It’s not the sudden catastrophic impact of disaster movies, but, as one of the experts, Katey Walter Anthony, told me, “..it’s a strong headwind.”

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Jeffrey Ellebogen is in a very small club of well prepared experts who know the global scientific literature on the health effects, or lack thereof, of wind power.

Formerly an Assistant Professor in Neurology at Harvard, and director of the Sleep Lab at Mass General Hospital, Ellenbogen was lead author of the Massachusetts Department of Public Health study on the issue, in 2012. He continues his research at John Hopkins University today.

Dr. Ellenbogen was recorded last month in Saginaw, MI.