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View Diary: Watch The Planet Die: A Review of Mark Lynas' Six Degrees (40 comments)

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  •  Real Climate review and Hansen's leadership (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Bob Love, Cassiodorus

    Thanks for an excellent review.

    FYI, Real Climate just did a review a few days ago.

    Also, you say nobody is discussing a binding agreement to keep the fossil fuels in the ground.  Jim Hansen has been doing just that, and he's starting to get a lot of attention.  He believes the main problem is coal (since without it even burning all the remaining easily accessible oil and gas won't put enough carbon into the atmosphere to trigger dangerous climate change), and that the initial major focus needs to be on stopping construction of new coal plants.    

    Jim's home page is here, and includes most everything he's written in the last decade.  (Note the link at the top to sign up for his mailing list.)  For those who don't know him, Jim is the U.S. government's chief climate scientist and probably fair to say the world's leading climate scientist in terms of his influence on other scientists.  He is pushing his colleagues very, very hard and is starting to see results.

    Of the various documents on his site probably his testimony to the House Global Warming Committee last spring, How Can We Avert Dangerous Climate Change?, is the most cogent.  The abstract:

    "Recent analyses indicate that the amount of atmospheric CO2 required to cause dangerous climate change is at most 450 ppm, and likely less than that. Reductions of non-CO2 climate forcings can provide only moderate, albeit important, adjustments to the CO2 limit. Realization of how close the planet is to ‘tipping points’ with unacceptable consequences, especially ice sheet disintegration with sea level rise out of humanity’s control, has a bright side. It implies an imperative: we must find a way to keep the CO2 amount so low that it will also avert other detrimental effects that had begun to seem inevitable, e.g., ocean acidification, loss of most alpine glaciers and thus the water supply for millions of people, and shifting of climatic zones with consequent extermination of species.

    "Here I outline from a scientific perspective actions needed to achieve low limits on CO2 and global warming. These changes are technically feasible and have ancillary benefits. Achievement of needed changes requires overcoming the spurious argument that developed and developing countries have equivalent responsibilities, as well as overcoming special interests advocating minimalist or counterproductive actions such as corn-based ethanol and liquid-fuel-from-coal programs."      

    You will note that none of the candidates' platforms come even close to meeting this need, which I'm afraid is a problem.

    •  Well it's good that someone's mentioning this -- (0+ / 0-)

      though I hardly see how the world is going to keep the fossil fuels in the ground when they're such valuable commodities, and when everyone's playing the capitalist game.

      The candidates need to have signs tacked onto their backs which say: "saving capitalism for a dying planet."  Each and every one of them.

      "Imagine all the people/ Sharing all the world" -- John Lennon

      by Cassiodorus on Fri Nov 30, 2007 at 08:24:45 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

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