Friday, February 27, 2009

climate review February

-- updated, revised 3/4, 3/6 --

February 2009 was encouraging, inspiring, in a bracing sort of way. Obama acts as a Confucian gentleman. He responds to knowledge. He cherishes friends from distant places. He doesn't repay scorn with violence. And as Mencius counsels, he heeds the people.

That cat can dance.

This month's climate review suggests that information clarifies. Boundary conditions are now emerging. For remaining within the limits of a temperature rise of 2 C (bad, but acceptable), it appears we have 93 months left. This is the green revolution timeframe. Beyond this timeline opportunity looms dieback. The way the dieback would unfold has become clearer, too. Policywise, February showed a big change for the better. What follows are first some thoughts, next some quotes, and then the regular link list of climate events, climate policy items, mitigation attempts, and climatology news.

Thanks, as always, for your input -- keep it coming!


-- Risky --

So far, it appears the new administration has made all the right moves -- but also a mistake. Obama continues Bush policies. Bush reminds me of Hitler: everything he touches he ruins. Bush, like Hitler, freely started wars with no exit strategy ("kill 'em all" won't do). By sending more troops to Afghanistan, Obama makes Bush's war into his own. Furthermore, Bush, like Hitler, rewarded cronies with booty and transferred wealth from the little people to those in power. And when those in power messed up and the people got hurt, the wealth transfer worsened: the first bailout last fall. By sending a second bailout after the first, without changing the rules much, Obama follows Bush. Over war and bailout, Obama follows a loser.

-- Answers --

Of course the system is collapsing, as unsustainable structures must. Answers, to the question of what to do, stay unchanged. Excellent survival is hippie evolution. A post-consumerist world is our chance. The post-collapse economy will not be based on growth. We will use more Nash than Marx or Smith. Think Star Trek communism with a free market in the green sector.

-- Questions --

Now that the planet is turning hot and dry, and the seas lose their abundance, and the lands lose their fertility, what shall be done with those Americans who've cheated the world's youth out of resources? When will Bush, the climate-changer-in-chief, be brought to justice? What shall be done with the Republican architects of collapse--when will American Denazification begin? And locally, I ask: when will solar, wind, & trains be allowed at the Sun Coast? When will USF Professor Sami Al-Arian, still innocent, still in jail, be rehabilitated?


Alligators basking off the English coast; a vast Brazilian desert; the mythical lost cities of Saigon, New Orleans, Venice, and Mumbai; and 90 percent of humanity vanished. Welcome to the world warmed by 4 C.

G Vince how to survive the coming century New Scientist 2-25

In the face of the impending crisis, people often ask what they can do to protect themselves. 'Buy gold? Stockpile canned goods? Build a fortified compound in a remote area? What should I do?' I would like to suggest a different kind of question: 'What is the most beautiful thing I can do?'

C Eisenstein money & the crisis of civilization RealitySandwich 2-23

Among other things, contraction means that all the activities of everyday life need to be downscaled including standards of living, ranges of commerce, and levels of governance ... The wealth of several future generations has already been spent and there is no equity left there to re-finance.

Jim Kunstler the abyss stares back Clusterfuck Nation 2-23

Owners of capital will stimulate the working class to buy more and more expensive goods, houses and technology, pushing them to take more and more expensive credits, until their debt becomes unbearable. The unpaid debt will lead to bankruptcy of banks, which will have to be nationalized, and the State will have to take the road which will eventually lead to communism.

Karl Marx, thanks to D Schechter, who will rescue us as economy remains in free fall? common dreams 3-2

President Obama, this is your moment. This is your time to beat Buicks into bullet trains, Suburbans into subways, and Hummers into hybrid buses.

Derrick Z Jackson pull the plug on US automakers Boston Globe 2-21

We head off down Panchsheel Marg, one of New Delhi’s main streets. The ladies want to show me something. The U.S. Embassy and the Chinese Embassy are both located on Panchsheel, directly across from each other. They asked me to check out the rooftops of each embassy. What do I notice? Let’s see ... The U.S. Embassy’s roof is loaded with antennae and listening gear. The Chinese Embassy’s roof is loaded with ... new Chinese-made solar hot-water heaters.
You couldn’t make this up.

Tom Friedman yes they could. so they did New York Times 2-15

Admittedly, Nome is a long way from Australia, but last summer my wife and i saw there a number of moored, well-rigged but unexceptional yachts that had come through the Northwest Passage. That is, they had made without drama a journey that defeated Cook in the 18th century and killed Sir John Franklin and all his expedition in the 19th century.

T Keneally after the inferno Guardian 2-20

The effects we're seeing now are largely the results of gases pumped into the air during the Kennedy administration.

Stephan Faris, Forecast New York: Henry Holt 2009, p.222


Alabama blanketed by rare snow 2.28.
California declares drought emergency 2.27.
Spain loses 90 percent of its glaciers 2.23.
Australia worst fires on record 2-12
North American birds alter migrations 2-10
Britain gets one month's rainfall in one day 2-10
US cold January was actually warm 2-10
NOAA January US temperatures 2.9.
China declares emergency: worst drought in fifty years 2-5
Chicago coldest temps in ten years 2-4
Kentucky deadly ice storm 2-2
World heads for 'water bankruptcy' 1-30


California mulls water rationing 2.27.
Washington climate protest planned 2.26.
NYC Times Square to be turned into pedestrian mall 2.26.
US explosive growth of climate change lobby 2.25.
Chicago launches climate initiative 2.24.
Florida dying Everglades restoration in jeopardy 2.24.
Obama's address to congress (text) 2.24.
Australia: charged for toilet flushing -- rational water tax 2.16.
UN, EU: US 'sea change' on climate talks 2.13.


global general strike March 13-19 info
ASEAN leaders urged to discuss climate change 2.27.
US/UK blamed for rapid increase in China's CO2 2.23.
US universities advise to avoid spring breaks in Mexico 2.23.
Latvia government collapses 2.20.
stock decline hits depression levels 2.17.
US living standard changes permanently 2.17.
Ireland might be next 2.16.
International jurists bewail damage done by US war on terror 2.16.
is America ready to quit coal? 2.14.
US fed obligations exceed world GDP 2.13.
Dubai spirals down 2.12.
Iraq prez declares end of US dominance 2.10.
US actual unemployment 14 percent 2.6.
Florida from boom to bread lines 2.8.
Krygyzstan closes US military base 2.6.
US anti-torture activists sentenced to US prison (Spanish) 1.30.
Europe's welfare system a model for the 21st century 1.27.


Boston airport parking carbon fee proposed 3.2.
new outlook in US raises hopes on climate treaty 3.1.
NASA's chief climatologist calls for civil disobedience 2.27.
France builds nuclear power plants for Italy (German) 2.24.
Japan utilities may buy domestic solar power at twice the price 2.24.
California cuts off water to farms 2.20.
China Chery Automobile Co. launches hybrid 2.20.
World Bank steps up climate fight in Latin America 2.17.
wind turbines on household roofs 2.15.
Center for Biodiversity declares legal war on climate change 2.13.
to slow climate change, tax carbon 2.13.
California solar firm announces big contract 2.12.
Oil industry ready to work on global warming 2.12.
US ethanol is struggling 2.11.
... compare: Cohen: bring on the right biofuels '08
... contrast: Monbiot: biofuels do more harm than good '09
UK mulls rationing air travel 2.9.
US renewable energy grid expenses 2.8.
Obama reverses Bush pollution policies 2.6.
Sweden turns to nuclear energy 2.5.


Truth Commission for the Bush era? 3.2.
America's stupid health care debate 3.1.
Total says oil output near peak 2.15.
Truth Commission to investigate Bush/Cheney abuses? 2.12.
Latin American panel calls US drug war a failure 2.12.
call for Bush Administration trials 2.3.
smallest house in the world '08


George F. Will


how to survive the coming century 2.25.
... link to interactive map 4 C warmer (be patient, slow upload)
Risks of global warming have been underestimated 2.24.
Arctic summers predicted to be ice-free by 2013 2.21.
Andean glaciers 'could disappear': World Bank 2.18.
positive loop: melt-pools accelerate Arctic ice loss 2.18.
UN: food production may fall 25 percent by 2050 2.17.
South American glaciers gone by 2030? 2.17.
a world without water 2.16.
climate change worst-case scenarios: not worst enough 2.14.
Gore: level of climate change 'without precedent' 2.14.
IPCC: climate change likely to be more devastating as thought 2.14.
IPCC: climate change even worse than predicted 2.14.
five top myths about 'clean' (sic) coal 2.14.
UK should prepare for massive loss of landmass 2.12.
new climatology-ecology synergies 2.6.
climate change could wipe out California farming 2.5.
icemelt could shift Earth's rotation 2.5.

The perspicacious surfer may have noticed that no peer-reviewed links appear this month. Indeed. Starting next month, I will post technical stuff in periodic updates on the climate blistered data bank, at least as long the klimasofia site is not yet up & running.

Ninety-three months left ... clock's ticking.

No comments: