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Hey, Why Don’t We Just Suck the CO2 Out of the Air and Use It?



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Newsweek:

Global industrialization has poured carbon in the sky, and now we must pay the price: the nasty specter of climate change, with its sinking islands and superstorms. But what if we could bring some of that carbon dioxide back down to earth?

Direct air capture (DAC) is the scooping of carbon from the sky. Unlike traditional carbon capture and storage, DAC doesn’t try to simply capture carbon from chimneys and factory flues; instead it scoops carbon directly from the atmosphere, no intermediate steps necessary. Better yet, the most sophisticated DAC plants don’t even need much electricity to function—they run on excess heat produced by other industrial processes. The temperatures needed to capture a ton of atmospheric carbon dioxide are “less than what is needed to boil your cup of tea,” says Graciela Chichilnisky, founder of direct air capture company Global Thermostat.

The CO2 removed from the air by plants like Chichilnisky’s has a variety of applications: It can be frozen into dry ice, introduced to greenhouses as plant food, used to carbonate beverages and even injected into oil wells in a process known as “enhanced oil recovery.”

“A lot of demand for CO2 is unmet,” says Chichilnisky. “In fact there’s a market for it that exceeds one trillion dollars per year.”

Companies like Chichilnisky’s want to profit from this unmet demand, an aggressive example of doing well while doing good. Global Thermostat’s pilot plant at the Stanford Research Institute in Menlo Park, California, has been profitable since construction finished, says Chichilnisky: The cost of producing compressed carbon dioxide via direct air capture is “minuscule” compared to compressed CO2’s sale price. Now she wants to build plants elsewhere, using the excess heat from power plants and foundries. “If the technology shows the way to be profitable is by cleaning up the atmosphere then this will be the strongest motivation for the world to attack climate change.”

The rest here.

Climate and Fracking Alarmism Meets Geologic Realism



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We read a lot about how climate change might hurt Napa’s wine industry and we read a lot about how fracking might cause earthquakes in California, but it looks like businesses in Northern California were not prepared for the certainty of an earthquake caused by the natural process of plate tectonics.

For example, here’s the damage at Bouchaine Vineyards via the Washington Post:

I grew up in California. Every bookcase was secured to a wall and we were never allowed to hang as much as a picture over our beds lest they get disturbed by even a minor earthquake. 

Not all businesses were so unprepared, however. Via the Los Angeles Times:

Duncan of Silver Oak said his main storage room, where hundreds of barrels are kept, was largely unharmed. He was able to salvage three barrels that fell to the ground and leaked.

“We had a fire in 2006, so we rebuilt things to withstand an earthquake,” Duncan said. “It worked very well.”

In the next few weeks, the shock of what happened in Napa will wear off and the enviros will be back in the news pitching their apocalyptic climate scenarios. And as we’ve just seen, California is not fully prepared for the real risks the state faces, and that is truly alarming. 

 

 

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People Ignore Climate Scientists Because They’re Not Enough Like the Kardashians?



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Georgia Tech climatologist Judith Curry thinks scientists need to get better at social media to make an impact on what the public thinks about global warming. Via Oilprice.com:

Oilprice.com: You’ve also talked about the “Kardashian Factor” … Can you expand on this?

Judith Curry: The Kardashian Factor relates to a scientist’s impact in social media. There is a growing disconnect between scientists who impact within the ivory tower, as measured by publications and citations, versus those scientists that are tweeting and blogging. While some of the smartest people on the planet are university professors, most of them simply don’t matter in today’s great debates. The use of the term ‘Kardashian Factor’ is designed to marginalize social media impact as shallow popularity.

Social media is changing the world, and academia hasn’t quite figured out what to do about it. On issues relevant to public debate, social media is rivaling published academic research in its impact. Social media is leveling the playing field and democratizing science. The skills required to be successful in social media include good writing/communication skills and the abilities to synthesize, integrate, and provide context. Those who are most successful at social media also have a sense of humor and can connect to broader cultural issues – they also develop a trustworthy persona. These are non-trivial skills, and they are general traits of people that have impact.

So, why do I do spend a lot of my time engaging with the public via social media? I’m interested in exploring social media as a tool for engaging with the public, group learning, exploring the science-policy interface, and pondering the many dimensions of the wicked climate problem. I would like to contribute to the public debate and support policy deliberations, I would like to educate a broader and larger group of people, and finally I would like to learn from people outside the group of my academic peers (and social media is a great way to network). I am trying to provoke people to think outside the box of their own comfort zone on the complex subject of climate change.

The whole interview here.

The problem is scientists and climate activists are already active on social media. For Neil deGrasse Tyson has over 2 million followers on Twitter; Bill Nye has over 1.6 million. They even took the social-media equivalent of a peer-reviewed paper — a selfie — with the president:


But if Tyson and “The Science Guy” — the Kim and Kourtney of science Twitter accounts – can’t change the debate, Curry and her 2,700 followers on Twitter won’t do much. As for Curry’s claim that she is “engaging with the public via social media,” I don’t see much evidence of it. Here are here recent tweets, none of which show any engagement with her readers. You can love or hate the third Kardashian of science, Richard Dawkins, but you can’t say he doesn’t get into a dialog with followers, i.e., here’s Dawkins going back and forth with many, many people angered by his recent tweets on abortion. But Dawkins didn’t change anybody’s mind even with his high level of engagement.

Yes, social media is important, but it’s important because it’s a medium to deliver to people the content they want to read, not to deliver the content that you want them to read. 

 

 

Science: ‘Unexpected’ Link Between the Sun and Cold Temperatures



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From Watts Up With That:

Lund University have published a reconstruction of solar activity vs snow accumulation in Greenland, which indicates a strong correlation between solar minima and a colder climate.

‘The study shows an unexpected link between solar activity and climate change,’ Dr Muscheler said in a press release.

‘It shows both that changes in solar activity are nothing new and that solar activity influences the climate, especially on a regional level. ‘Understanding these processes helps us to better forecast the climate in certain regions.’

According to the study abstract;
http://www.nature.com/ngeo/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/ngeo2225.html

“We find that during the Last Glacial Maximum, solar minima correlate with more negative δ18O values of ice and are accompanied by increased snow accumulation and sea-salt input over central Greenland. We suggest that solar minima could have induced changes in the stratosphere that favour the development of high-pressure blocking systems located to the south of Greenland, as has been found in observations and model simulations for recent climate9, 10. We conclude that the mechanism behind solar forcing of regional climate change may have been similar under both modern and Last Glacial Maximum climate conditions.”

Dr. Muscheler emphasised that he does not believe that the sun is the main factor driving current global warming – but he does believe that climate modellers will have to pay more attention to the influence of the sun on climate change.

However, he warned that the sun was not the only factor in causing climate change.

‘Climate skeptics like to say sun is causing more global warming than we think but I don’t think so.

‘What our paper shows is we need to include all processes – greenhouses, the sun and so on, especially for local climates which is important of course.

The rest here.

Global Warming ‘Alarmists’ Should Embrace the Term



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They really think this will work. Eric Holthaus of Slate writes:

I’m sick of having to hide it, so here goes: I’m a climate change alarmist.

There, I said it. After years of fighting off Internet trolls and being ridiculed on Fox News for caring about the Earth and its inhabitants enough to make big changes to my life, I’ve had enough. It’s time that we climate change alarmists reclaim this dismissive term and defend ourselves.

Many of us have been lambasted for talking about the fundamental health of the planet. Climate scientist Kerry Emanuel has written “those interested in treating the issue as an objective problem in risk assessment and management are labeled ‘alarmists,’ a particularly infantile smear considering what is at stake.”

Now, I’m also an optimist. I’m convinced that humanity has the ability to tackle the problem and come to international agreement on how to do so in a fair way. It simply must happen. But for something so serious, it seems like there’s a general lack of alarm, a lack of emotion, and—to be blunt—a lack of ambition to act with the scale and urgency the issue requires.

Tragically, there’s a vast mismatch between our actions to date and what’s needed. This isn’t just another big environmental issue. When the ozone hole was discovered decades ago, the world got together and agreed to change the chemical used in making refrigerators cold. In hindsight, that seems incredibly easy compared to this. Climate change cuts to the core of who we are as a civilization and what kind of world we want to create for our kids. Perhaps understandably, that’s meant that a lot of smart people are really pessimistic about our future.

The rest here.

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California Solar Plant Igniting Birds in Midair



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And you thought only windmills killed avian wildlife. Via the AP:

Workers at a state-of-the-art solar plant in the Mojave Desert have a name for birds that fly through the plant’s concentrated sun rays — “streamers,” for the smoke plume that comes from birds that ignite in midair

Federal wildlife investigators who visited the BrightSource Energy plant last year and watched as birds burned and fell, reporting an average of one “streamer” every two minutes, are urging California officials to halt the operator’s application to build a still-bigger version.

The investigators want the halt until the full extent of the deaths can be assessed. Estimates per year now range from a low of about a thousand by BrightSource to 28,000 by an expert for the Center for Biological Diversity environmental group.

The rest here.

Al Gore Is Suing Al Jazeera



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Bloomberg:

Former U.S. Vice President Al Gore sued Al Jazeera, claiming the satellite news provider owned by the Qatari royal family owes him and a partner $65 million from a deal to buy his network, Current TV, for $500 million.

Gore, 66, and Joel Hyatt, another former Current TV owner, accused Al Jazeera American Holdings I Inc. of fraud and breach of contract. They are seeking undisclosed damages in a mostly sealed complaint filed today in Chancery Court in Wilmington, Delaware. The men alleged that Al Jazeera illegally tried to seize $65 million in escrow funds.

“Al Jazeera America wants to give itself a discount on the purchase price that was agreed to nearly two years ago,” David Boies, a lawyer for Gore, said in a statement. “We are asking the court to order Al Jazeera America to stop wrongfully withholding the escrow funds that belong to Current’s former shareholders.”

So, Al Gore wants more of the Qatari royal family’s dirty oil money? This is all so confusing. The rest here.

Oregon State Univ. Won’t Divest from Fossil Fuels



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From the Corvallis Gazette-Times:

A campaign led by Oregon State University faculty, staff and students to persuade the OSU Foundation to divest its holdings in fossil fuels has failed.

The foundation has announced that it will not divest, angering OSU Divest supporters who said they will continue the battle.

In a letter distributed to the OSU community, Ruth A. Beyer, who chairs the foundation’s Board of Trustees, cited divestment’s “impact on the foundation’s portfolio” and whether it would advance the cause of climate change as key drivers of the decision.

While noting that fossil fuels constitute only 6 percent of the foundation’s nearly $700 million in holdings, Beyer wrote that “categorically removing this sector would violate prudent investing rules that characterize best practices in asset allocation.”

Beyer also said that OSU’s record on environmental and energy issues was worthy of the support of the foundation, which is a nonprofit entity governed separately from the university.

“OSU is at the forefront in the research and development of technologies designed to improve the deployment of solar, wind and wave energy,” Beyer wrote, adding that OSU is an “unquestioned global leader” in small-scale nuclear energy.

“In short, our university’s actions dictate clearly our real and meaningful commitment to reducing carbon emissions. We believe that supporting this leadership financially is the best way for the foundation to contribute to the goal of carbon reduction.”

Ken Winograd, an OSU professor in the College of Education and spokesman for OSU Divest, expressed disappointment in the decision.

“We believe the foundation’s rejection of divestment undermines the university’s goals for sustainability both locally and globally,” Winograd said. “The foundation is disingenuous regarding fiduciary duty by not doing all it can to protect the future of our students and, instead, continuing to support an industry whose business plan is to pollute and degrade until the planet is completely exhausted.”

The rest here.

Debunking the New Keystone XL Study



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The alarmists were pretty excited a few days ago when a new study from Nature Climate Change found that building Keystone XL “could be worse for global warming than previously believed.” Via the Toronto Star:

The world’s most debated pipeline could be worse for global warming than previously believed, a new economic analysis says.

Keystone XL could produce four times more greenhouse gases than the U.S. State Department calculated in January — those estimates did not take into account that the added oil from the pipeline is likely to decrease prices and increase consumption — which would probably create more pollution, researchers say.

“There is no indication that the State Department took the market implication into consideration,” said lead author Peter Erickson.

In the study, published in the journal Nature Climate Change, Erickson and Michael Lazarus, of the Stockholm Environment Institute in Seattle, Wash., evaluated how building Keystone XL could affect oil prices: they found that for every barrel of oil obtained from Alberta’s oilsands as a result of the pipeline, global oil consumption would increase by 0.6 barrels because the surplus oil would lower oil prices and encourage people to use more.

“This is our analysis, and we believe that it could have the greatest emissions impact of the pipeline,” said Erickson in an interview.

Or not. Andrew Leach writes in Macleans:

A paper on Keystone’s climate impacts would fail Econ 101

The claim that Keystone will lead to lower oil prices and thus higher consumption is based on a faulty model

Well, most of what the alarmists believe is based on what we consider incomplete and faulty models. Why should Keystone XL be any different? Here’s Leach’s opener:

An article published this week in Nature Climate Change (article via Nature paywall) is making the rounds of the headlines because it makes some pretty bold claims—namely that the US State Department under-estimated the emissions impact of the Keystone XL pipeline by up to a factor of four.

The paper’s authors apply a simple model of the world oil market to reach their conclusions, which are driven by the potential for the pipeline to increase global oil supply, thus lowering oil prices and increasing consumption.  If this is true, then the increased consumption induced by the pipeline should be treated as a consequence of the project, and accounted for in a broad analysis of its costs and benefits (of course, so too should the benefits of increased oil consumption at lower prices).

This paper attempts, basically, what those of us who teach or have taught undergraduate economics often try to do—the authors take a simple model of a market, in this case oil, and apply that model using a real world example, in this case, KXL.  What’s important, however, is to get the basics of the example correct. If you miss that, you’ll reach a conclusion or generate a set of numbers, but they won’t really mean much.  It’s also, of course, important to discuss what you miss in building your simple model.  There’s a lot left out of the basic model used in this paper, but I think they also get the basic model wrong.

The rest of Leach’s analysis here.

 

GAO Criticizes EPA’s Cost-Benefit Analysis of New Power-Plant Rules



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The Government Accounting Office has found that the “most transparent administration” in history isn’t transparent enough on the analysis of new power-plant regulations. From The Hill:

A government report made public Monday finds fault with the Environmental Protection Agency’s analyses of the costs and benefits of its regulations. 

The Government Accountability Office report concluded that information incorporated into the EPA’s Regulatory Impact Analyses (RIA) was sometimes murky. 

Additionally, the GAO found that the agency did not always monetize the costs and benefits of proposed actions and that the EPA had estimated effects of its regulations on employment by, in part, using a study that is more than two decades old. 

“Without improvements in its estimates, EPA’s RIAs may be limited in their usefulness for helping decision makers and the public understand these important effects,” the GAO concluded. 

And . . .

The EPA’s rules lacked transparency, the GAO found. 

“Specifically, the information EPA included and presented in the RIAs was not always clear,” the report found. “According to OMB guidance, RIAs should communicate information supporting regulatory decisions and enable a third party to understand how the agency arrives at its conclusions.” 
 
EPA officials told GAO researchers that the costs and benefits cannot always be gauged, given the limits of agency resources and available data. 

The report concedes that such estimates are not always possible. 

“However, without doing so, the public may face challenges understanding the trade-offs associated with regulatory alternatives,” the GAO found.

The entire piece here.

How to Teach Children About Climate Change?



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The enviro-mag Grist suggests reading a “classic story” to your kids because even though the stories “weren’t written with ecology in mind, the books are goldmines for environmental meanderings.”

I agree with this. And tonight, I will read to my daughter the story of The Boy Who Cried Wolf

The NYT Is Questioning How Obama Handled High-Speed Rail Funding



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The New York Times really seems shocked that the president’s vision for high-speed rail isn’t working out as planned:

$11 Billion Later, High-Speed Rail Is Inching Along

WASHINGTON — High-speed rail was supposed to be President Obama’s signature transportation project, but despite the administration spending nearly $11 billion since 2009 to develop faster passenger trains, the projects have gone mostly nowhere and the United States still lags far behind Europe and China.

While Republican opposition and community protests have slowed the projects here, transportation policy experts and members of both parties also place blame for the failures on missteps by the Obama administration — which in July asked Congress for nearly $10 billion more for high-speed initiatives.

Instead of putting the $11 billion directly into those projects, critics say, the administration made the mistake of parceling out the money to upgrade existingAmtrak service, which will allow trains to go no faster than 110 miles per hour. None of the money originally went to service in the Northeast Corridor, the most likely place for high-speed rail.

On a 30-mile stretch of railroad between Westerly and Cranston, R.I., Amtrak’s 150-m.p.h. Acela hits its top speed — for five or 10 minutes. On the crowded New York to Washington corridor, the Acela averages only 80 m.p.h., and a plan to bring it up to the speed of Japanese bullet-trains, which can top 220 m.p.h., will take $150 billion and 26 years, if it ever happens.

Florida, Ohio and Wisconsin, all led by Republican governors, canceled high-speed rail projects and returned federal funds after deeming the projects too expensive and unnecessary.

“The Obama administration’s management of previously appropriated high-speed rail funding has been as clumsy as its superintending of the Affordable Care Act’s rollout,” said Frank N. Wilner, a former chief of staff at the Surface Transportation Board, a bipartisan body with oversight of the nation’s railroads. 

When Mr. Obama first presented his vision for high-speed rail nearly four years ago, he described a future of sleek bullet trains hurtling passengers between far-flung American cities at more than 200 m.p.h.

“Within 25 years, our goal is to give 80 percent of Americans access to high-speed rail,” Mr. Obama said in his 2011 State of the Union address. “This could allow you to go places in half the time it takes to travel by car. For some trips, it will be faster than flying — without the pat-down.”

But as Mr. Obama’s second term nears an end, some experts say the president’s words were a fantasy.

“The idea that we would have a high-speed system that 80 percent of Americans could access in that short period of time was unadulterated hype, and it didn’t take an expert to see through it,” said Kenneth Orski, the editor and publisher of an influential transportation newsletter who served in the Nixon and Ford administrations. “And scattering money all around the country rather than focusing it on areas ripe for high-speed rail, didn’t help.”

Imagine if the Times had raised these concerns prior to the spending of the funds? You know, like we did at Planet Gore.

The rest from the Times here.

 

Science: Drought in California Might Cause Earthquakes



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Via Takepart:

California’s drought has reached epic proportions. Nearly 60 percent of the state is in exceptional drought—the most severe category—and farmers are depleting groundwater reserves at record rates as wildfires break out north and south.

Now there’s something else to worry about: drought-triggered earthquakes.

If you want to sink a well in California and pump out as much water as you can, there historically hasn’t been a lot to stop you. Unlike other Western states, California has never regulated groundwater withdrawals. As a result, over the last 150 years, Californians have pumped nearly 160 cubic kilometers of groundwater from the Central Valley, the state’s agricultural heartland. That’s enough water to fill Lake Powell, Lake Mead, and all the Colorado River reservoirs downstream—twice, with some left over.

(For more on how California may run out of groundwater in 60 years, see the video above for an update to the documentary Last Call at the Oasis, produced by Participant Media, TakePart’s parent company.)

Groundwater withdrawal in the Central Valley was accelerating even before the current drought began in 2011. As much as 20 cubic kilometers of Central Valley groundwater may have been pumped out in just the last three years, according to one estimate. That’s about 12 percent of the last 150 years’ total depletion. 

With less water in the aquifer beneath it to hold it up, the soil throughout the Central Valley is sinking. In some places, the land is dropping as much as a foot a year, damaging roads and other infrastructure and exposing communities to increased flood risk.

But the missing water wasn’t just holding up the soil; it may have been holding the earth down as well. A study published earlier this year in the journal Nature suggested that the more water gets pumped out of the ground in the Central Valley, the greater the chance of earthquakes on the nearby San Andreas Fault.

It’s no surprise that groundwater pumping can set off earthquakes. A May 2011 quake in Lorca, Spain, which killed nine people and caused extensive damage to historic buildings, is thought to have been sparked by overdrafting of the local aquifer.

The rest here.

But now for some good news: As the revered climate models predict a wetter California in the future. . .

In fact, the most recent computer projections suggest that as the world warms, California should get wetter, not drier, in the winter, when the state gets the bulk of its precipitation. 

So global warming should help prevent earthquakes in California. More carbon dioxide to save the Sunshine State!

Science: Ants Might Save the Planet From Global Warming



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From the Times of India:

Ants may be cooling the Earth by helping trap carbon dioxide from the environment, a new study has claimed. 

A long-term experiment tracking the ants’ effects on soil suggests they cooled Earth’s climate as their numbers grew. 

“Ants are changing the environment,” said lead study author Ronald Dorn, from the Arizona State University in Tempe. 

Certain ant species “weather” minerals in order to secrete calcium carbonate — better known as limestone. The process traps and removes a tiny bit of carbon dioxide gas from the atmosphere, Dorn said. 

This ant limestone factory is a small-scale version of the massive planetary-cooling process that takes place in the oceans, known as carbon sequestration, ‘Live Science’ reported. 

Dorn discovered that ants were powerful weathering agents by tracking the breakdown of basalt sand. 

The rest here.

And the best news? Science has, in the past, suggested that global warming is increasing ant populations. The ants that we’ve created will save us!

Obama’s Proposed EPA Plan Triggers Protests in Pittsburgh



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Via the Pittsburgh Tribune:

The national debate over regulating carbon emissions from coal-fired power plants reached its loudest and most contentious point on Thursday at a Downtown corner.

During a lunchtime break from testimony on proposed federal rules, hundreds of protesters fresh from a clean-air rally with Mayor Bill Peduto confronted thousands of union workers marching through what Allegheny County Labor Council President Jack Shea told them is a “union city.”

The collision of opinions outside the William S. Moorhead Federal Building was more boisterous and tense than what Environmental Protection Agency workers heard inside during 11 hours of testimony that will continue on Friday.

Inside, 200 people spoke of balancing job and energy concerns with stopping climate change.

On Liberty Avenue just after noon, shouts of “Move to China!” from union marchers in green camo shirts met responses of “No planet, no jobs!” from sign-waving environmentalists.

“It’s really emotional because I understand the fear they have (about their jobs),” said Gretchen Dahlkemper-Alfonso, 30, of Philadelphia, who is national field manager for the Moms Clean Air Force and daughter of former U.S. Rep. Kathy Dahlkemper, D-Erie.

“But all I want to do is protect my children,” she said. “It’s emotional for me. I’m no stranger of going to the emergency room with my daughter on days when the air quality is bad.”

The 45-minute confrontation ended peacefully despite the arrests of 14 union organizers, including United Mine Workers President Cecil Roberts for obstruction.

The rest here.

No, Global Warming Won’t Bring Back Smallpox



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Phew. One fewer thing for the alarmists to be alarmed about. Via Gizmodo:

Could the frozen bodies of smallpox victims in Siberia, now thawing because of climate change, re-release the virus into the environment and thus start a global pandemic?

There has apparently been speculation about this for more than a decade. “In the past,” the BBC explains, “some researchers and news outlets speculated that smallpox in the frozen graves of former victims might remain in suspended animation, ready to begin a new cycle of infection should those bodies ever be dug up and unthawed [sic]. Scientists have attempted to excavate corpses in frozen graves in Alaska and Siberia that contain the remains of smallpox victims, however none of the bodies contained viable viruses.” . . . 

This terrifying possibility — a plot straight out of a future horror film — is all but immediately quashed, however, by Michael Lane of the CDC. Lane previously worked on smallpox eradication programs from 1970 to 1981 and he, for one, is not worried. “No one feels there’s a serious chance that global warming will melt the permafrost and unleash an epidemic,” he quips.

The whole thing here.

Japan Is Betting Big on Hydrogen for Future Fuel Needs



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Bloomberg:

The hydrogen market in Japan is set to expand to 1 trillion yen ($9.8 billion) by 2030 and 8 trillion yen by 2050, according to a government report.

“Hydrogen energy has the potential for wide applications, not just fuel cell vehicles and fuel cells for homes,” the government-affiliated New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization said in a report. “It also has the potential for areas such as transportation and power generation.”

Japan has the largest number of applications for patents related to fuel cells, according to the report.

The U.S. is investing some money in hydrogen, but not nearly as much as Japan.

White House Tries to Make an Economic Case to Fight Climate Change — With No Real Numbers



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Via the Wall Street Journal:

The White House is trying to put a price on delaying action on climate change.

Aiming to create a sense of urgency around its actions to curb greenhouse gas emissions, the White House is issuing a report Tuesday that argues that the longer the delay, the more future generations will bear costs.

The report doesn’t put a dollar amount on what the administration says is the price of inaction. Instead, it employs a pair of economic models to predict its magnitude.

Critics of climate action argue that the upfront costs to cut carbon emissions are greater than the administration predicts. They are also skeptical of predictions of how much climate change will cost future generations.

The White House report finds that economic costs to address climate change rise by 40% in each decade in which there is a delay in enacting policies to cut carbon emissions.

It also finds that for each 1 degree Celsius rise in global temperature, the global gross domestic product takes an increasingly larger hit. In other words, it says, an increase of between 3 and 4 degrees creates more economic damage than an increase of between 2 and 3 degrees.

“If we do nothing this year, we save money this year,” said Jim Stock, leader author of the report and a staff member of the White House Council of Economic Advisers until earlier this month. “But the trouble is, by doing nothing this year, it costs us more in the future.”

Summary: The White House doesn’t know how much more it will cost to delay this fight against climate change, nor does it know if what it wants to spend money on today will be effective, but it’s positive that it will cost “more in the future.”

This isn’t economics, it’s economics denialism.

John Kerry Traveling to India to Talk Climate Change



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Via the Wall Street Journal, as “the world burns,” John Kerry heads to India for global-warming talks. Good luck with that.

Rolling Stone: ‘Climate Change Is Real, and Sharknadoes Are the Proof’



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From Rolling Stone’s “10 Biting Lessons We Learned from Sharknado 2: The Second One“:

3. Climate change is real, and sharknadoes are the proof.
Along with rich character work and intricate worldbuilding, scathing political commentary on the perils of anthropogenic climate change is a constant in both of the Sharknado films. In this installment, we see New York City at the center of wild weather patterns – tropical storms moving in from one direction, unseasonal summer blizzards from the other. In addition to creating optimal conditions for a sharknado, these unstable climatic conditions recall the snowstorm that followed Hurricane Sandy in 2012, further devastating the New York metropolitan area. Or maybe it’s just a crass and thoughtless way for the movie to explain why half the time there’s an outdoor scene, there’s snow on the sidewalks and you can see the actors’ breath even though it takes place in July. Either way!

It’s hard to know when the alarmists are joking and when they are serious. You be the judge.

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