Changes in attitudes towards global warming

A place to bring a contemplative / Dharmic perspective and opinions to current events and politics.

In the past 5 years I have become...

More concerned about man-made climate change
23
50%
Equally concerned about man-made climate change
9
20%
Less concerned about man-made climate change
6
13%
Never believed in it, still don't
5
11%
Climate change? Global warming? Bring it on!
3
7%
 
Total votes: 46

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robertk
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Re: Changes in attitudes towards global warming

Post by robertk » Tue Apr 10, 2018 4:28 am

Wall Street Journal
https://www.wsj.com/articles/climate-al ... 1522605526

They likened a courtroom ‘tutorial’ to the Scopes Monkey Trial. But their side got schooled.

[​IMG]
Illustration: Phil Foster

By
Phelim McAleer
April 1, 2018 1:58 p.m. ET

San Francisco

Five American oil companies find themselves in a San Francisco courtroom. California v. Chevron is a civil action brought by the city attorneys of San Francisco and Oakland, who accuse the defendants of creating a “public nuisance” by contributing to climate change and of conspiring to cover it up so they could continue to profit.

No trial date has been set, but on March 21 the litigants gathered for a “climate change tutorial” ordered by Judge William Alsup —a prospect that thrilled climate-change alarmists. Excited spectators gathered outside the courtroom at 6 a.m., urged on by advocates such as the website Grist, which declared “Buckle up, polluters! You’re in for it now,” and likened the proceeding to the 1925 Scopes Monkey Trial.

In the event, the hearing did not go well for the plaintiffs—and not for lack of legal talent. Steve W. Berman, who represented the cities, is a star trial lawyer who has made a career and a fortune suing corporations for large settlements, including the $200 billion-plus tobacco settlement in 1998.

“Until now, fossil fuel companies have been able to talk about climate science in political and media arenas where there is far less accountability to the truth,” Michael Burger of the Sabin Center for Climate Change Law at Columbia University told Grist. The hearing did mark a shift toward accountability—but perhaps not in the way activists would have liked.

Judge Alsup started quietly. He flattered the plaintiffs’ first witness, Oxford physicist Myles Allen, by calling him a “genius,” but he also reprimanded Mr. Allen for using a misleading illustration to represent carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and a graph ostensibly about temperature rise that did not actually show rising temperatures.

Then the pointed questions began. Gary Griggs, an oceanographer at the University of California, Santa Cruz, struggled with the judge’s simple query: “What do you think caused the last Ice Age?”

The professor talked at length about a wobble in the earth’s orbit and went on to describe a period “before there were humans on the planet,” which “we call hothouse Earth.” That was when “all the ice melted. We had fossils of palm trees and alligators in the Arctic,” Mr. Griggs told the court. He added that at one time the sea level was 20 to 30 feet higher than today.

Mr. Griggs then recounted “a period called ‘snow ballers,’ ” when scientists “think the entire Earth was frozen due to changes in things like methane released from the ocean.”

Bear in mind these accounts of two apocalyptic climate events that occurred naturally came from a witness for plaintiffs looking to prove American oil companies are responsible for small changes in present-day climate.

The defendants’ lawyer, Theodore J. Boutrous Jr. , emphasized the little-discussed but huge uncertainties in reports from the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and the failure of worst-case climate models to pan out in reality. Or as Judge Alsup put it: “Instead of doom and gloom, it’s just gloom.”

Mr. Boutrous also noted that the city of San Francisco—in court claiming that rising sea levels imperil its future—recently issued a 20-year bond, whose prospectus asserted the city was “unable to predict whether sea level rise or other impacts of climate change or flooding from a major storm will occur.”

Judge Alsup was particularly scathing about the conspiracy claim. The plaintiffs alleged that the oil companies were in possession of “smoking gun” documents that would prove their liability; Mr. Boutrous said this was simply an internal summary of the publicly available 1995 IPCC report.

The judge said he read the lawsuit’s allegations to mean “that there was a conspiratorial document within the defendants about how they knew good and well that global warming was right around the corner. And I said: ‘OK, that’s going to be a big thing. I want to see it.’ Well, it turned out it wasn’t quite that. What it was, was a slide show that somebody had gone to the IPCC and was reporting on what the IPCC had reported, and that was it. Nothing more. So they were on notice of what in IPCC said from that document, but it’s hard to say that they were secretly aware. By that point they knew. Everybody knew everything in the IPCC,” he stated.

Judge Alsup then turned to Mr. Berman: “If you want to respond, I’ll let you respond. . . . Anything you want to say?”

“No,” said the counsel to the plaintiffs. Whereupon Judge Alsup adjourned the proceedings.

Until now, environmentalists and friendly academics have found a receptive audience in journalists and politicians who don’t understand science and are happy to defer to experts. Perhaps this is why the plaintiffs seemed so ill-prepared for their first court outings with tough questions from an informed and inquisitive judge.

Activists have long claimed they want their day in court so that the truth can be revealed. Given last week’s poor performance, they may be the ones who inherit the wind.

chownah
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Re: Changes in attitudes towards global warming

Post by chownah » Tue Apr 10, 2018 4:52 am

So, did someone change their attitudes towards global warming?
chownah

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Kim OHara
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Re: Changes in attitudes towards global warming

Post by Kim OHara » Tue Apr 10, 2018 7:33 am

robertk wrote:
Tue Apr 10, 2018 4:28 am
Wall Street Journal
https://www.wsj.com/articles/climate-al ... 1522605526

They likened a courtroom ‘tutorial’ to the Scopes Monkey Trial. But their side got schooled.

[​IMG]
Illustration: Phil Foster

By
Phelim McAleer
April 1, 2018 1:58 p.m. ET

San Francisco

Five American oil companies find themselves in a San Francisco courtroom. California v. Chevron is a civil action brought by the city attorneys of San Francisco and Oakland, who accuse the defendants of creating a “public nuisance” by contributing to climate change and of conspiring to cover it up so they could continue to profit.

No trial date has been set, ...
It ain't over til it's over.
And there could be a long way to go. How long did the tobacco cases drag on for?

It's good that the judge was sincerely enough interested in climate science to have approached the experts for answers to some fairly basic questions. You can see them, and the best answers to them, at http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/ar ... r-answers/

:coffee:
Kim

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Kim OHara
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Re: Changes in attitudes towards global warming

Post by Kim OHara » Fri Apr 27, 2018 8:08 am

I'm not sure what I think about this - https://www.theguardian.com/environment ... are_btn_fb
The core message is that
“We’re doomed,” says Mayer Hillman with such a beaming smile that it takes a moment for the words to sink in. “The outcome is death, and it’s the end of most life on the planet because we’re so dependent on the burning of fossil fuels. There are no means of reversing the process which is melting the polar ice caps. And very few appear to be prepared to say so.”

Hillman, an 86-year-old social scientist and senior fellow emeritus of the Policy Studies Institute, does say so. His bleak forecast of the consequence of runaway climate change, he says without fanfare, is his “last will and testament”. His last intervention in public life. “I’m not going to write anymore because there’s nothing more that can be said,” he says ...
and
Without hope, goes the truism, we will give up. And yet optimism about the future is wishful thinking, says Hillman. He believes that accepting that our civilisation is doomed could make humanity rather like an individual who recognises he is terminally ill. Such people rarely go on a disastrous binge; instead, they do all they can to prolong their lives.

Can civilisation prolong its life until the end of this century?
I'm a bit worried that people will see the "doom" and then just stop trying - which is silly because (as I've been saying for a while) there are always going to be ways of making the future less bad than it would otherwise be.
Never ever give up!
:jedi:
Kim

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Kim OHara
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Re: Changes in attitudes towards global warming

Post by Kim OHara » Mon Apr 30, 2018 11:16 am

slowly.jpg
slowly.jpg (46.65 KiB) Viewed 465 times

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Leeuwenhoek2
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Re: Changes in attitudes towards global warming

Post by Leeuwenhoek2 » Wed May 02, 2018 9:07 am

Hum. I may be the only reader of this thread who actually read the transcript of this hearing.
robertk wrote:
Tue Apr 10, 2018 4:28 am
The defendants’ lawyer, Theodore J. Boutrous Jr. , emphasized the little-discussed but huge uncertainties in reports from the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and the failure of worst-case climate models to pan out in reality. Or as Judge Alsup put it: “Instead of doom and gloom, it’s just gloom.”
I think the judge summarized that well. But "just gloom" doesn't fit a strongly clung to narrative.

This is a lawsuite which means it runs on a logic that's different from much of what appears in social media. The judge sort of warned the audience of that in his opening. IMO, court proceedings often run truer to Buddhist ethics than say many pronouncements of so-called eco-Buddhists.

In as much as I've looked into claims about "smoking gun" documents my evaluation parallels the judges.
The IPCC doesn't say what many warming believers think it says. And many so-called "deniers" are often more in agreement with the IPCC reports than commonly believed. Thus it's not at all surprising the alleged "smoking gun" is really mostly a summary and re-statement of a IPCC report.
robertk wrote:
Tue Apr 10, 2018 4:28 am
Judge Alsup was particularly scathing about the conspiracy claim. The plaintiffs alleged that the oil companies were in possession of “smoking gun” documents that would prove their liability; Mr. Boutrous said this was simply an internal summary of the publicly available 1995 IPCC report.

The judge said he read the lawsuit’s allegations to mean “that there was a conspiratorial document within the defendants about how they knew good and well that global warming was right around the corner. And I said: ‘OK, that’s going to be a big thing. I want to see it.’ Well, it turned out it wasn’t quite that. What it was, was a slide show that somebody had gone to the IPCC and was reporting on what the IPCC had reported, and that was it. Nothing more. So they were on notice of what in IPCC said from that document, but it’s hard to say that they were secretly aware. By that point they knew. Everybody knew everything in the IPCC,” he stated.
-----------------------------------
<wink> I'm predicting this case will become a lesson in the karma of slothful allegations. It may even help Trump get re-elected.
That's what my :roll: climate model says -- the reader is advised to consume all predictions of climate models with a grain of salt.

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Leeuwenhoek2
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Re: Changes in attitudes towards global warming

Post by Leeuwenhoek2 » Thu May 03, 2018 3:32 am

If recent history is a guide there are reasons not to expect that climate lawsuits will prevail.
... the fierce debate among scientists over the virtues of aiming for 100 percent renewables rages on. Most prominently, Mark Jacobson of Stanford has argued that states and nations can make that transition affordably. Other researchers have critiqued his work, notably in a paper published earlier this year in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Jacobson subsequently filed a libel lawsuit against the lead author and publisher, which he dropped last week (see “A Renewable-Energy Champion Is Suing His Scientific Critics”).
https://www.technologyreview.com/s/6103 ... he-energy/

The "publisher" cited in the quote above was no less than the US National Academy of Sciences!
Stanford professor Mark Jacobson has sued a prominent energy researcher and the National Academy of Sciences for defamation
A number of scientists, at least one science body, and climate science specialists opined that such lawsuits are not a good idea. But the case shows once again that there are wealthy donors that are willing to put up the considerable expenses for such cases. Arguably they file and/or support these cases regardless of the legal merit or likely hood of success. If you have the money, lawsuits are a way of censoring and punishing people you disagree with or have some beef with. Sometimes this goes for business competitors and even those competing for research grants. I've help defend people this has happened to. The lawsuit is the punishment as the saying goes. If you have the money and the will you don't need to win or have a solid case.

I'd like to think it was partly the science community that talked Jacobson down off his "high horse".
There are several reasons why many/most scientists discourage these lawsuits. One reason is that unless the science and technology issues are well settled (which they aren't in this case) it's difficult to impossible for courts to decide on the science. When the alleged defamation is stated in a peer reviewed science paper the case strongly favors the defendants.

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Kim OHara
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Re: Changes in attitudes towards global warming

Post by Kim OHara » Thu May 03, 2018 5:47 am

It won't *prove* anything at all, of course, but it's a fun idea ...
An environmental group wants to carve President Trump's face into an arctic iceberg for one special purpose: To prove climate change is happening. "Melting Ice," a Finnish non-governmental organization, aims to raise about $500,000 to build a 115-foot monument dedicated to Mr. Trump.

Nicholas Prieto, chairman of the Melting Ice association, which is behind "Project Trumpmore", said the idea is a tangible attempt to show Mr. Trump and others who don't believe climate change is a "real issue."
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/president- ... is-accord/

:twothumbsup:
Kim

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Leeuwenhoek2
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Re: Changes in attitudes towards global warming

Post by Leeuwenhoek2 » Thu May 03, 2018 6:46 am

"Project Trumpmore" brings to mind the works of artist Christo http://christojeanneclaude.net/artworks ... d-projects

Kim, I hope we can agree that, as objective as one can be, the project will
  1. ... prove that icebergs melt.
  2. ... prove that climate change is a real issue. Real enough in the mind to motivate burning through a pile of money and fuel.
  • Finally, "prove" that there are believers who will burn 0.5 million $ and some considerable amount of fossil fuel in order to create the causes and conditions to :rolleye: and/or ____<fill in the blank here with your favorite theory about social influence > _______________.
----------------------------------------------
I predict it will be seen as fun or amusing in different ways and will somehow be seen as supporting every major climate narrative and perspective and it's opposite.
Energy spend "howling at the moon" is probably better for society than the alternative.
"full of sound and fury, signifying ... nothing"

Kim OHara wrote:
Thu May 03, 2018 5:47 am
It won't *prove* anything at all, of course, but it's a fun idea ...
An environmental group wants to carve President Trump's face into an arctic iceberg for one special purpose: To prove climate change is happening. "Melting Ice," a Finnish non-governmental organization, aims to raise about $500,000 to build a 115-foot monument dedicated to Mr. Trump.
Nicholas Prieto, chairman of the Melting Ice association, which is behind "Project Trumpmore", said the idea is a tangible attempt to show Mr. Trump and others who don't believe climate change is a "real issue."
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/president- ... is-accord/

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Kim OHara
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Re: Changes in attitudes towards global warming

Post by Kim OHara » Thu May 03, 2018 7:07 am

:heart: your positive attitude, Leeuw!

:coffee:
Kim

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Leeuwenhoek2
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Re: Changes in attitudes towards global warming

Post by Leeuwenhoek2 » Thu May 03, 2018 7:25 am

Kim OHara wrote:
Thu May 03, 2018 7:07 am
:heart: your positive attitude, Leeuw!
I can't decide if you are serious or sarcastic on that last.

I'm creative too! I elucidated two theories that would be proved by the project whereas you were pessimistic that it would prove nothing.

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Kim OHara
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Re: Changes in attitudes towards global warming

Post by Kim OHara » Thu May 03, 2018 11:44 am

:focus:
Please!

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Leeuwenhoek2
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Re: Changes in attitudes towards global warming

Post by Leeuwenhoek2 » Thu May 03, 2018 9:59 pm

Kim OHara wrote:
Thu May 03, 2018 11:44 am
:focus:
Please!
If you regard your recent posts as being "on topic" then asking for :focus: now doesn't make sense to me ... except perhaps as a manipulative strategy.

What would make sense would be to say something like:
"I regret that my recent posts have been off topic but ..."

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Kim OHara
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Re: Changes in attitudes towards global warming

Post by Kim OHara » Thu May 03, 2018 10:23 pm

Leeuwenhoek2 wrote:
Thu May 03, 2018 9:59 pm
Kim OHara wrote:
Thu May 03, 2018 11:44 am
:focus:
Please!
If you regard your recent posts as being "on topic" then asking for :focus: now doesn't make sense to me ... except perhaps as a manipulative strategy.

What would make sense would be to say something like:
"I regret that my recent posts have been off topic but ..."
Sure.
I regret that my recent posts have been off topic but I felt a need to address meta-discussion and personal criticism posted by Leeuwenhoek2.
Done. :smile:

It's all true, too. And I would be perfectly happy to stay on topic, i.e. global warming, all the time. Can we let this response of mine to yet another metadiscussional (is that a word? :tongue: ) post of yours, be the last of the nonsense?

:namaste:
Kim

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Kim OHara
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Re: Changes in attitudes towards global warming

Post by Kim OHara » Fri May 04, 2018 4:30 am

Another court case -
Shell is one of the biggest climate polluters in the world. This transnational company has known about the severity of climate change and the impacts of oil and gas drilling for decades, but has not only misled the public on the issue, it continues drilling for fossil fuels. Across the world Shell’s climate wrecking activities are leaving a trail of devastation, from Australia to the Netherlands. We cannot save the climate if large corporations continue to pollute the planet. This is why Friends of the Earth Netherlands is taking Shell to court.

This historic case could set a powerful legal precedent: if we win, one of the world’s biggest polluters will have to stop wrecking the climate. Join the case against Shell as an honorary co-claimant. ...
:reading: https://www.foe.org.au/join_climate_case_against_shell

Eventually one of these cases will be won, but even the prospect of continued legal challenges will help reduce fossil fuels corporations' mad enthusiasm for their toxic product.

:jedi:
Kim

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