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2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #37

Posted on 12 September 2020 by John Hartz

A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week: Sun, Sep 6, 2020 through Sat, Sep 12, 2020

Editor's Choice

With California ablaze, Newsom blasts Trump administration for failing to fight climate change

Wildfire in Oroville, CA in Sep, 2020

Trinity River Conservation Camp crew members drown embers Friday in Oroville. (Brian van der Brug / Los Angeles Times)

Standing among charred trees in Oroville, Gov. Gavin Newsom insisted that California will do more to fight climate change and took the Trump administration to task for its policies that reduce environmental protections.

“People that want to roll back vehicle emission standards so you could spend more money at the pump and produce more greenhouse gas emissions, to create more of what you see around me — it’s beyond the pale of comprehension,” Newsom said. “We’re fighting against that and will prevail as long as more people come to this cause.”

The governor warned that the problems facing California and states along the West Coast would soon be experienced across the country.

“This is a climate damn emergency,” he said. “This is real and it’s happening.”

Newsom made a passionate argument for increasing efforts to address climate change as the number of acres that have burned in California so far this year topped 3 million and other state and foreign governments sent resources to battle major blazes statewide. 

Click here to access the entire article originally published on the Los Angeles Times website. 

With California ablaze, Newsom blasts Trump administration for failing to fight climate change by Taryn Luna, California, Los Angeles Times, Sep 11, 2020

Articles Linked to on Facebook

Sun, Sep 6, 2020

Mon, Sep 7, 2020

Tue, Sep 8, 2020

Wed, Sep 9, 2020

Thu, Sep 10, 2020

Fri, Sep 11, 2020

Sat, Sep 12, 2020

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Comments 1 to 7:

  1. NOAA (US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration), responsible for much of US weather prediction, has hired David Legates as new deputy assistant secretary of Commerce for environmental observation and prediction, a position that would report directly to acting NOAA Administrator Neil Jacobs.

    Legates has a long history of climate denial, including a series of poorly written papers coauthoring with Willie Soon. This is likely another move by the current adminstration to put climate denialists and industry boosters into environmental posts, and to influence science reports with political oversight. 

    DesmogBlog write-up on David Legates

    Washington Post article on his hiring

    The next administration, assuming it's not Trump and company, will have a great deal of work to do reversing this dismantling of the US environmental and climate frameworks. 

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  2. I'm a longtime followe of this site, first time commenter.

    Just want to mention what seems to be a popular broken arrow in the rhetoric quiver of climate change denialists; they are all quite eager to suggests that the conflagrations in the western USA are due to bad forestry mana practice.  This may play a part, but many of them suggests it's the only thing.  Hopefull, your team and a number of your readers who are forestry experts can smokejump into this location where the fire of irrationality are spreading and put this fire out.  The John Batchelor show (#407) is one of these flareups.  Guest is a Chicago finance academic, not a forester.  Should be easy to put out.  

    Good work y'all.



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  3. "forestry management" not "forestry mana", putting aside any Old Testament apocalyptic allusions 

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  4. Govanguitar ~ if you haven't already seen it, then you might enjoy the video on Youtube by (science reporter) "Potholer54".   Title is "The cause of Australia's bushfires"  ( number #52 in the climate series ) regarding the major wildfires of early 2020 there.   Duration 36 minutes - rather longer than Potholer's average - but very good value as an example of logical analysis.

    The parallels are strong.  Of course there are differences, some in climate, some in vegetation & management.  And the western USA has also had a multi-decadal alteration in spread of plant types (versus mostly "old growth" in Australia's southeast).

    But a similarity is the Murdoch media & friends, who reflexly front up with every possible excuse . . . except climate change.

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  5. This is my first post and I really enjoy the complex explanations involved in climate science provided by this site. While all the science behind man induced global warming seems sound the crux of the problem will remain elusive to all politicians. I fail to see any one tackle the real problem and that is our wanton lifestyle that disregards and disrespect our only home in the univese. All I can see are politicians talking a good game about actions but yet do nothing about developments in wildland urban interface. People seem to think we can develop green technology to engineer the planet so that we can bake the cake and eat it too. Sadly if we don't change our ways and lifestyle then no force except for nature itself will aright the kilter.

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  6. Steve @5, yes clearly industrial civilisation is harsh on the planet. Green technologies would at least improve that situation, along with eliminating or drastically reducing waste. Going further would mean we have to stop using things like computers and cars. Are you prepared to do that?

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  7. Steve @5

    “The IPCC report that the Paris agreement based its projections on considered over 1,000 possible scenarios. Of those, only 116 (about 10%) limited warming below 2C. Of those, only 6 kept global warming below 2C without using negative emissions. So roughly 1% of the IPCC’s projected scenarios kept warming below 2C without using negative emissions technology like BECCS. And Kevin Anderson, former head of the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research, has pointed out that those 6 lone scenarios showed global carbon emissions peaking in 2010. Which obviously hasn’t happened. So from the IPCC’s own report in 2014, we basically have a 1% chance of staying below 2C global warming if we now invent time travel and go back to 2010 to peak our global emissions. And again, you have to stop all growth and go into decline to do that. And long term feedbacks the IPCC largely blows off were ongoing back then too.”


    'Limiting global warming to two degrees Celsius will not prevent destructive and deadly climate impacts, as once hoped, dozens of experts concluded in a score of scientific studies released Monday. A world that heats up by 2C (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit)—long regarded as the temperature ceiling for a climate-safe planet—could see mass displacement due to rising seas, a drop in per capita income, regional shortages of food and fresh water, and the loss of animal and plant species at an accelerated speed. Poor and emerging countries of Asia, Africa and Latin America will get hit hardest, according to the studies in the British Royal Society's Philosophical Transactions A. "We are detecting large changes in climate impacts for a 2C world, and so should take steps to avoid this," said lead editor Dann Mitchell, an assistant professor at the University of Bristol. The 197-nation Paris climate treaty, inked in 2015, vows to halt warming at "well under" 2C compared to mid-19th century levels, and "pursue efforts" to cap the rise at 1.5C.'


    If 'change' can be implemented?
    “LONDON, 19 February, 2020 − Virtually all the world’s demand for electricity to run transport and to heat and cool homes and offices, as well as to provide the power demanded by industry, could be met by renewable energy by mid-century. This is the consensus of 47 peer-reviewed research papers from 13 independent groups with a total of 91 authors that have been brought together by Stanford University in California.”



    Will there be change?
    “Today’s global consumption of fossil fuels now stands at roughly five times what it was in the 1950s, and one-and-half times that of the 1980s when the science of global warming had already been confirmed and accepted by governments with the implication that there was an urgent need to act. Tomes of scientific studies have been logged in the last several decades documenting the deteriorating biospheric health, yet nothing substantive has been done to curtail it. More CO2 has been emitted since the inception of the UN Climate Change Convention in 1992 than in all of human history. CO2 emissions are 55% higher today than in 1990. Despite 20 international conferences on fossil fuel use reduction and an international treaty that entered into force in 1994, wo/man made greenhouse gases have risen inexorably.”

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    Moderator Response:

    [RH] Please add to the discussion rather than just reposting links and quoted passages. I believe there have been previous warnings on this matter. Please take a moment to review the SkS commenting rules.

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