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View Diary: Where were you when CO2 passed 400 parts per million? (82 comments)

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  •  It's fun to blame dumb hicks (9+ / 0-)

    and point the finger at licentious consumerism. But the fact of the matter is it's the Coal Industry, here and around the world, especially China, who are the real culprits. I'm all about slagging people for their stupid habits, but it's a sign of the complete and total success of Big Coal's marketing campaign that they are simply never referenced even when the subject is the problem that they have directly caused.

    •  Don't Forget The Ones Whose Answer Is... (5+ / 0-)

      ..."I was putting up a spotlight for my 'NO NUCLEAR POWER' sign".

      On the Internet, nobody knows if you're a dog... but everybody knows if you're a jackass.

      by stevemb on Wed May 15, 2013 at 07:13:33 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Coal is very bad, evil even, not just for the CO2 (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Stude Dude

      but for the corruption, the killing of workers and workers' rights, the destruction of landforms and pollution of surface and groundwater, the shedding of really nasty and persistent toxins, all that crap.

      But while mining and burning coal may be a large "single identifiable source of what we are consuming that is killing us, it's only about a third of the total CO2-spew, if I read the accounting and science right: http://www.c2es.org/...

      Time for a "Manhattan Project," except that the bastards who run the place have convinced us that WE are the "common enemy," and so we are all good with killing each other via the current "weapons of mass destruction," burning anything with a BTU in it, and not about to aim at doing anything effective to keep the species alive.

      Like the FOXes observe, Al Gore has the fattest carbon feet in Tennessee, so why the f___ should I "cut back" and reduce my comfort and pleasure?

      "Is that all there is?" Peggy Lee.

      by jm214 on Wed May 15, 2013 at 07:34:17 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  That makes as much sense as... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Calamity Jean

        ...suggesting that the fact that "our" government kills innocent people in drone strikes would to any degree validate a choice on your part to commit murder.
        What Al Gore, or anyone else on the planet, does is utterly irrelevant to the choices you make, and the moral responsibility you bear both for the choices, and for the consequences thereof.
        And no matter how small the incremental consequences may be of any one individual's choices in re: AGW, they are not zero.
        I must say I'm a bit surprised to see both this thought, and the attitudes underlying it, on this site (or for that.matter, in the same comment as your other points).
        And though I agree with you on the need for a "Manhattan Project" approach (and with your other observations about coal), the odds of that happening in the near future are very close to a Kelvin zero.
        And even if they weren't, such a process and individual action are not only not mutually exclusive, they are clearly complementary.
        Neither is likely to be sufficient, especially in the short and medium term.  Both -- and other societal and institutional approaches as well -- are necessary.

        •  Why, thank you so much for the inappropriate (0+ / 0-)

          scolding. Seems Irony is wasted on the Earnestly Ardently Sincere...

          I live on a boat, most of my electric comes from solar panels, my wife and I use maybe 100 gallons of potable water for all purposes every week, et cetera. My observation was intended to point out that putting Big Dirty Coal out of business is a wonderful, laudable goal but is not a cure-all. That "sector" is maybe a third of what's killing us. No argument with your various points and barbs, though around here it seems "we" are starting to savage each other pretty regularly. No argument about the individual and collective guilt of all of us who use and consume plastics and pesticides and GMO and cars and airplanes and leafblowers and all that are part of a problem of Dumb Design, apparently, where "features" are "failures" when it comes to survival of the human-centric system.

          Every little bit helps, I agree, and I know I could do even more, every day, in every way, to Cut Carbon and Minimize Methane and all that, and I look for ways to do so. You are all virulent about something: got any ideas how you encourage people like Al Gore to "live simply, that others may simply live?" I am doing a good bit of my part already, and your scolding ought to be directed elsewhere. Maybe you could go back and re-read what I wrote and what you wrote and see if you still think so vanishingly, condescendingly little of me.

          Bearing in mind that whether by burning, drowning, stroke or asphyxiation or what ever, we are all eventually dead, and our good deeds and bad are gone into the Great Brownian Motion that makes up the biosphere...

          "Is that all there is?" Peggy Lee.

          by jm214 on Wed May 15, 2013 at 12:51:21 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  You're right. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        JeffW, jm214
        But while mining and burning coal may be a large "single identifiable source of what we are consuming that is killing us, it's only about a third of the total CO2-spew, if I read the accounting and science right: http://www.c2es.org/....
        From your link:
        With the highest carbon content of all the fossil fuels, carbon dioxide emissions from coal combustion represented 28.3 percent of total U.S. greenhouse gas emissions in 2010.
        (Bolding mine.)  But almost nobody but the Big Coal Barons love coal; what people want is electricity, and most coal is burned for electricity.  More from your link:
        In 2010, 92 percent of coal consumed in the U.S. was used for 45 percent of total U.S. electric power generation. The remaining 8 percent was consumed for industrial purposes, including steel and cement manufacturing. Worldwide, electric power generation was also the largest consumer of coal.
        Coal-burning electrical generation could be replaced with efficiency, wind, solar, "low head" hydro, biomass, and small amounts of natural gas generation.  Will it?  I don't know, but it's replace or die.  Electrical generation is the place to start.  

        Renewable energy brings national global security.     

        by Calamity Jean on Thu May 16, 2013 at 10:46:51 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Hicks? more like yuppies n/t (0+ / 0-)

      "I'm sculpting now. Landscapes mostly." ~ Yogi Bear

      by eXtina on Wed May 15, 2013 at 12:07:58 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Not "especially China". (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JeffW
      But the fact of the matter is it's the Coal Industry, here and around the world, especially China, who are the real culprits.
      Great Britain and the United States started burning significant amounts of coal much longer ago than China did.  The accumulated total of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is much more our doing than China's, because we started first.  

      In addition, China is trying to get away from coal power.  In 2012, the Chinese added about 12 terawatt hours (TWh) of coal generation, but 26 TWh of wind power and triple digits of hydroelectric power.  http://thinkprogress.org/...  Chinese citizens are objecting to the air pollution from burning coal.  Because wind turbines have improved so much in recent years, it's now cheaper to reduce air pollution by replacing coal with wind power than it is to install stack gas scrubbers, which the US did in the 60s.  

      Renewable energy brings national global security.     

      by Calamity Jean on Thu May 16, 2013 at 10:05:00 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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