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55% of Holland below sea? IPCC got this wrong too The Netherlands has asked the UN climate change panel to explain an inaccurate claim in a landmark 2007 report that more than half the country was below sea level, the Dutch government said on Friday.
According to Dutch authorities, only 26% of the country is below sea level, and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change will be asked to account for its figures, environment ministry spokesman Trimo Vallaart said.
The incident may cause further embarrassment for the IPCC, which recently admitted that a claim in the same report that global warming could melt Himalayan glaciers by 2035 was wrong. (Times of India)
The dam is cracking So the 40% of the world's population that relies on the seven major river systems supplied by these glaciers can sleep a little more soundly in the knowledge that their water won't run out in 25 years after all. (BBC)
Glacier scientist: I knew data hadn't been verified The scientist behind the bogus claim in a Nobel Prize-winning UN report that Himalayan glaciers will have melted by 2035 last night admitted it was included purely to put political pressure on world leaders. - In an interview with The Mail on Sunday, Dr Lal, the co-ordinating lead author of the report's chapter on Asia, said: 'It related to several countries in this region and their water sources. We thought that if we can highlight it, it will impact policy-makers and politicians and encourage them to take some concrete action. 'It had importance for the region, so we thought we should put it in.' Dr Lal’s admission will only add to the mounting furore over the melting glaciers assertion, which the IPCC was last week forced to withdraw because it has no scientific foundation.
- Environmentalist Alton Byers said the panel’s credibility had been damaged. ‘They’ve done sloppy work,’ he said. ‘We need better research on the ground, not unreliable predictions derived from computer models.’
Last night, Dr Pachauri defended the IPCC, saying it was wrong to generalise based on a single mistake. ‘Our procedure is robust,’ he added. (UK Daily Mail)
UN climate body admits 'mistake' on Himalayan glaciers An alternative genesis lies in the misreading of a 1996 study that gave the date as 2350. AR 4 asserted: "Glaciers in the Himalayas are receding faster than in any other part of the world... the likelihood of them disappearing by the year 2035 and perhaps sooner is very high." (BBC)
Greenhouse gases ...are gases in an atmosphere that absorb and emit radiation within the thermal infrared range. This process is the fundamental cause of the greenhouse effect. The main greenhouse gases in the Earth's atmosphere are water vapor, carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, and ozone. In our solar system, the atmospheres of Venus, Mars and Titan also contain gases that cause greenhouse effects. Greenhouse gases greatly affect the temperature of the Earth; without them, Earth's surface would be on average about 33 °C (59 °F) colder than at present.
The burning of fossil fuels since the beginning of the Industrial revolution has substantially increased the levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. (Wikipedia)
True sustainability needs an ethical revolution Obsessed with technology, we have overlooked something critical that lurks in our institutionalised notion of sustainability - Technology increases our ability to exploit the environment and the efficiency of exploitation. But it does not determine how we ought to exercise that ability and efficiency. In the 1970s, technology and economic incentives led to more efficient home heating and insulation in America. What did we do with that ability? Use less energy? No. We built bigger houses, because we could heat bigger houses more affordably.
Society is a ship whose engine is technology and rudder is ethics; history bears plenty of witness to the wrecks caused by technologies that developed ahead of ethics. There is no reason to think sustainability is any different. Technology is important, but not as important as understanding how sustainability is first and foremost a relationship: a relationship with the environment; a relationship where ethics (or a lack of attention to ethics) is the predominant influence on how we exploit nature. (The Ecologist)
CNN FINALLY Reports ClimateGate -- To Downplay It Of Course
It only took CNN six days to notice the growing international scandal known as Climategate, and when it finally reported on the matter, it predictably did so by downplaying the significance.
Maybe even more embarrassing for the supposedly "Most Trusted Name In News," Russia Today did a far better job of detailing what happened at Britain's Climate Research Unit and how the global warming debate is impacted by it. Throughout her report on Wednesday's "The Situation Room," CNN correspondent Brooke Baldwin regularly referred to the "global warming consensus."
Even worse, she complained about there being "very little context" in the e-mail messages hacked from a "climate research institute," but never actually read ONE complete message or named ONE of the scientists involved.
Baldwin also withheld from viewers the connection these scientists have to the United Nations' Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change as well as their ties to the White House and Congressional Democrats (videos embedded below the fold with CNN transcript)... (News Busters)
Alleged Email: Gavin Schmidt to many RealClimate.org - Dec 10 2004 08:56:42 - "The idea is that we working climate scientists should have a place where we can mount a rapid response to supposedly 'bombshell' papers that are doing the rounds and give more context to climate related stories or events. Some examples that we have already posted relate to combatting dis-information regarding certain proxy reconstructions and supposed 'refutations' of the science used in Arctic Climate Impact Assessment." (Climate Research Unit at the University of East Anglia)
Alleged Email: Tom Wigley to Timothy Carter Re: Java climate model - 24 Apr 2003 09:17:29 - "I do not know the best way to handle the specifics of the editoring. Hans von Storch is partly to blame -- he encourages the publication of crap science 'in order to stimulate debate'. One approach is to go direct to the publishers and point out the fact that their journal is perceived as being a medium for disseminating misinformation under the guise of refereed work. I use the word 'perceived' here, since whether it is true or not is not what the publishers care about -- it is how the journal is seen by the community that counts. I think we could get a large group of highly credentialed scientists to sign such a letter -- 50+ people." (Climate Research Unit at the University of East Anglia)
Go forth and multiply a lot less THOMAS MALTHUS first published his “Essay on the Principle of Population”, in which he forecast that population growth would outstrip the world’s food supply, in 1798. His timing was unfortunate, for something started happening around then which made nonsense of his ideas. As industrialisation swept through what is now the developed world, fertility fell sharply, first in France, then in Britain, then throughout Europe and America. When people got richer, families got smaller; and as families got smaller, people got richer.
Now, something similar is happening in developing countries. Fertility is falling and families are shrinking in places— such as Brazil, Indonesia, and even parts of India—that people think of as teeming with children. As our briefing shows, the fertility rate of half the world is now 2.1 or less—the magic number that is consistent with a stable population and is usually called “the replacement rate of fertility”. Sometime between 2020 and 2050 the world’s fertility rate will fall below the global replacement rate. (The Economist)
International Swine Flu Conference Top leaders and key decision-makers of major companies representing a broad range of industries will meet with distinguished scientists, public health officials, law enforcers, first responders, and other experts to discuss pandemic prevention, preparedness, response and recovery at the 1st International Swine Flu Conference (International Swine Flu Conference)
The world's first cocaine bar Route 36 has turned La Paz, Bolivia into a hotspot for drug tourism, tempting backpackers from all over the world - "Tonight we have two types of cocaine; normal for 100 Bolivianos a gram, and strong cocaine for 150 [Bolivianos] a gram." The waiter has just finished taking our drink order of two rum-and-Cokes here in La Paz, Bolivia, and as everybody in this bar knows, he is now offering the main course. The bottled water is on the house.
The waiter arrives at the table, lowers the tray and places an empty black CD case in the middle of the table. Next to the CD case are two straws and two little black packets. He is so casual he might as well be delivering a sandwich and fries. And he has seen it all. "We had some Australians; they stayed here for four days. They would take turns sleeping and the only time they left was to go to the ATM," says Roberto, who has worked at Route 36 (in its various locations) for the last six months. Behind the bar, he goes back to casually slicing straws into neat 8cm lengths.
La Paz, Bolivia, at 3,900m above sea level – an altitude where even two flights of stairs makes your heart race like a hummingbird – is home to the most celebrated bar in all of South America: Route 36, the world's first cocaine lounge. I sit back to take in the scene – table after table of chatty young backpackers, many of whom are taking a gap year, awaiting a new job or simply escaping the northern hemisphere for the delights of South America, which, for many it seems, include cocaine. (London Guardian)
Obama as Joker Explained The basic problem with the Obama as Joker poster is that its message is lost on those who believe the government is basically good and all it takes to turn things around (things accomplished by that monster Bush) is that we elect the right man to the office of president. (Prison Planet)
A democratic dark spot in Indonesia Unless Yudhoyono plans some dramatic changes for his second term, Jakarta's duplicitous laws and reliance on militarized commerce in West Papua will continue to devastate its largest province (Asia Times)
Israel must attack Iran, insists Bolton Former US Ambassador to the UN John Bolton told The Washington Post on Thursday that the only way left to prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons is to support an Israeli military strike on the Islamic Republic (Israel Today)
Bioterrorism Evidence Evidence that an international corporate criminal syndicate, which has annexed high government office inside the United States, is intent on carrying out a mass genocide against the people of the United States by using an artificial (genetic) flu pandemic virus and a forced vaccination program to cause mass death and injury and depopulate America in order to transfer control of the United States to WHO, the UN and affiliated security forces (UN troops from countries such as China, Canada, the UK and Mexico etc) (Jane Bürgermeister)
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