Tuesday, February 13, 2024

It's all so simple . . .

It's all so simple alone on a stream or listening in desert silence.

In 2014 I suggested "the term 'climate destruction' from now on -- instead of the much less troubling global warming or climate change." The term never caught on but it's certainly what we are seeing with rapid ice loss in GreenlandArctic, and Antarctic.

My favorite recent climate video is the February 15, 2024, YouTube "Prof. Kevin Anderson, Climate: Where We Are Headed" for its excellent summary.

Saturday, February 10, 2024

"Atlantic Ocean is headed for a tipping point − once melting glaciers shut down the Gulf Stream, we would see extreme climate change within decades, study shows" -- The Conversation

by René van Westen, Utrecht University; Henk A. Dijkstra, Utrecht University, and Michael Kliphuis, Utrecht University

Used with permission.

Superstorms, abrupt climate shifts and New York City frozen in ice. That’s how the blockbuster Hollywood movie “The Day After Tomorrow” depicted an abrupt shutdown of the Atlantic Ocean’s circulation and the catastrophic consequences.

While Hollywood’s vision was over the top, the 2004 movie raised a serious question: If global warming shuts down the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation, which is crucial for carrying heat from the tropics to the northern latitudes, how abrupt and severe would the climate changes be?

Twenty years after the movie’s release, we know a lot more about the Atlantic Ocean’s circulation. Instruments deployed in the ocean starting in 2004 show that the Atlantic Ocean circulation has observably slowed over the past two decades, possibly to its weakest state in almost a millennium. Studies also suggest that the circulation has reached a dangerous tipping point in the past that sent it into a precipitous, unstoppable decline, and that it could hit that tipping point again as the planet warms and glaciers and ice sheets melt.

Read the full article on The Conversation

Sunday, February 4, 2024

El Niño and Warm Ocean Temperatures Increase California Rainstorms/Hurricane/Flooding/Evacuations

This is the second time I recycled a post video due to first-recorded hurricane winds off Big Sur, California, and widely-reported heavy rains, flooding, and warnings or evacuation orders affecting "over 11 million people" in the state.  February 2, 2024 Los Angeles Times reporters Haley Smith and Grace Toohey quoted UCLA climate scientist Daniel Swain explaining the rainstorm, "It’s a combination of El Niño and global warming as to why the oceans are so warm over such a broad region. It’s not 100% clear exactly the extent to which each is a relevant player, but they’re both significant. The long-term trend, of course, is mainly because of climate change and the warming of the oceans associated with that.”

Just north of San Francisco, Lagunitas-Forest Knolls had winds 102 mph (about 164 kilometers per hour) according to CNN's Robert Shackelford. ET, February 5, 2024.

On February 4, 2024, Los Angeles Times reporter Rong-Gong Lin II described the California storm as "potentially historic" quoting meteorologist Robbie Munroe with the National Weather Service in Los Angeles.

The big storm follows "hundreds [of rescues] from homes and cars" on January 22, 2024, in San Diego according to Andrew Keatts January 23, 2024, in AXIOS San Diego.

Hurricanes in San Diego?  Maybe Says SCRIPPS Researcher Art Miller in August 18, 2018 CBS Mornings YouTube.

Friday, February 2, 2024

Climate Sensitivity, and Human Insensitivity to Precautionary Principle

German theoretical physicist Sabine Hossenfelder's Youtube "I wasn't worried about climate change. Now I am," with over a million views in the past six days, shows results if James Hansen's warnings of climate sensitivity are correct. She said at 13:14 on the timeline, "It just blows my mind how mind-fucking stupid it is that the lives of all people on this planet depend on an obscure discussion about the properties of supercooled water droplets in a type of cloud whose name I can't even rememeber [ . . . . ] At 12:44 she noted, "If the climate sensitivity is [ . . . as high as James Hansen's recent paper suggests with a climate sensitivity of 4.8 C plus or minus 1.2 C for doubled CO2' . . . ] then we have maybe 20 years or so until our economies collapse." [ . . . . ] At 15:08 she adds, "People in the developed world will somehow cope with the hotter conditions by fertilizing and irrigating the hell out of any agricultural areas they have. But in many countries around the equator, crop yield will substantially drop. This will most affect countries that are already prone to famine, and at the same time, some of the poorest countries in the world will be hit very hard by heat waves and drought. [ . . . . ] We're talking about some hundred millions of people who have nothing left to lose, suddenly beginning to migrate. [ . . . . ] That's going to cause a lot of tensions at the Southern borders of Europe, Russia, and Mexico, for just to mention a few. Someone somewhere will make a lot of money by selling weapons. Drones will be deployed. Some of them will shoot. Innocent people will die." She also added concerns about pandemics, and for those in the developed world, movement inland to avoid rising seas, huge economic problems, and "every-day products will become more and more expensive, until most of us simply can't afford them. And then they'll disappear. Need a new iPhone? That'll be 50 thousand dollars. Internet connection at home? 8 thousand a month [ . . . . ]"

I wrote June 5, 2023, Michael Mann was quoted by Bob Berwyn's May 26, 2023 Inside Climate News article, "James Hansen Warns of a Short-Term Climate Shock Bringing 2 Degrees of Warming by 2050," "Hansen has 'ignored a decade of new science,' and that the incorrect claims about climate sensitivity 'won’t survive peer review.'" However, I added, "Even though Mann is well-known for his 1998 'Hockey Stick' graph, I agree with Zeke Hausfather and Andrew Dessler's point in Berwyn's article. Considering that Jim Hansen’s predictions have often proven correct, it’s important that we pay close attention to what he’s saying.”

With what's at stake, I thought it would be good to dig deeper into the cloud issue as it relates to climate sensitivity. I found concerning news about this in a Nov 2, 2022 YouTube "Deep Dive: Climate Modeling with Nick Lutsko" published by Scripps Oceanography. Assistant Professor of Oceans and Climate Nick Lutsko said at 6:19 on the timeline, "So climate sensitivity is just a measure of how much our surface temperature will warm up in response to increases in CO2 concentrations, and normally we define it per doubling of CO2 so let's say we went from like roughly 400 parts per million today to 800 parts per million. How much would the climate system warm up? [ . . . . ] The  reason I think it's important is because so many of the impacts of climate change  scale with global mean surface temperature. You know we already see this in COP or we know it's much worse to have 2 degrees of warming versus 1.5 degrees of warming and so we think that earth's climate sensitivity is somewhere between let's say two and four and a half degrees Celsius. [ . . . . ] 

At 9:21 on the timeline, Lutsko continued, "Joel Norris and I at Scripps [ . . . ] call these [low clouds] 'hot spots' because if you look at maps [ . . . ] of cloud cover they kind of pop up as being important [ . . . . ] At 13:01 Lutsko noted, "Just having more CO2 in the atmosphere, even if you keep the [sea and land] temperatures the same, has an impact on clouds [ . . . . ]  At 13:52 he added, "Basically the CO2 sits above the clouds and it absorbs radiation that the clouds emit, and so you can think of it as there's this little bit of warming right above the clouds or extra warming where the CO2 is absorbing radiation."

Interviewer Margaret Leinen, Scripps Director, said at 14:11 "So it's a little blanket on top of the cloud," and Lutsko said "Exactly." 

At 18:06 Lutsko said regarding the also concerning role of aerosols, "We think that [the forcing is] actually on the high end of, for example, the range that the IPCC gives. We think that historically aerosols have provided more cooling than was previously thought and the implication of course is that the climate system is more sensitive than maybe  people thought." 

As I noted above, Hossenfelder said, "If the climate sensitivity is [ . . . as high as James Hansen's recent paper suggests with a climate sensitivity of 4.8 C plus or minus 1.2 C for doubled CO2' . . . ] then we have maybe 20 years or so until our economies collapse." 

At 18:30 Leinen said, "So if we clean up more pollution in the atmosphere and remove that cooling that we would see a much more sensitive climate response," and Lutsko said, "Yeah, this is a big irony. Of course we want to clean up all this air pollution but that's also going to lead to more warming." 

It's worth noting ClimateAdam, aka climate scientist Adam Levy with a PhD from Oxford in atmospheric physics, had a much different response to the climate sensitivity issue than Sabine Hossenfelder's Youtube. He said, "The real story here is that 'Climate models that have shown themselves to be bad at simulating climate change get weird results when asked to simulate future climate change, and climate scientists aren't taking those results so seriously.'" While I agree with most of what ClimateAdam says in his videos, I disagree with him about the IPCC writing "really authoritative reports." My reasons are: 1) Keah Schuenemann's excellent May 19, 2015 YouTube showing "the role of the IPCC and their tendency to underestimate climate impacts"; and 2)  Dahr Jamail, author and winner of a Martha Gellhorn Prize for Journalism, said in May 15, 2019 YouTube "Climate Change & The End of Ice - Presentation at GERC2019," at 36:19 on the timeline, "[Regarding the IPCC] there was a peer-reviewed study that was published on this [that showed the IPCC] is extremely over-conservative. I have talked to several IPCC authors [ . . . ], some of them in this book [The End of Ice], that have said the IPCC's projections are watered down. It's a heavily politicized organization, and in short it's not science. So another person from within the IPCC, it was passed on to me, said you can basically take the IPCC's worst case predictions and double them." In an August 20, 2018 truthout.org article, "Sixth Mass Extinction Ushers In Record-Breaking Wildfires and Heat," Jamail wrote, "I’ve spoken to prestigious scientists both on and off the record who believe that sooner rather than later, global population will be reduced to around 1 billion humans." 

It therefore seems wise to use the precautionary principle at this time. 

Didier Bourguignon, Head of Citizens’ Enquiries Unit (AskEP) who serves as an adviser at European Parliament, wrote "The precautionary principle enables decision-makers to adopt precautionary measures when scientific evidence about an environmental or human health hazard is uncertain and the stakes are high. It first emerged during the 1970s and has since been enshrined in a number of international treaties on the environment, in the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union and the national legislation of certain Member States. The precautionary principle divides opinions. To some, it is unscientific and an obstacle to progress. To others, it is an approach that protects human health and the environment. Different stakeholders, experts and jurisdictions apply different definitions of the principle, mainly depending on the degree of scientific uncertainty required for the authorities to take action. Although most experts agree that the precautionary principle does not call for specific measures (such as a ban or reversal of the burden of proof), opinions are divided on the method for determining when to apply precautionary measures. The application of the precautionary principle presents many opportunities as well as challenges. The precautionary principle is closely linked to governance. This has three aspects: risk governance (risk assessment, management and communication), science-policy interfaces and the link between precaution and innovation." 

I'm grateful my August 24, 2013 post "Metabolism of Stars" had recent interest. 

Saturday, January 20, 2024

Jargon of Possible Human Extinction at 3°C Above Year 1850 Baseline

 A friend said something like, "Most people don't understand the jargon of 2 C, 3 C, 4 C, 5 C, IPCC, and COP."

Let me put it this way: Reliable sources like James Hansen noted November 2, 2023 in a Time article by Alejandro de la Garza, "The 2°C warming limit is dead, unless we take purposeful actions to alter the earth’s energy imbalance [by solar geoengineering]," and former Harvard Fellow Ye Tao noted in a 2020 YouTube about 7 minutes long posted by Wenyan Liao, "At three degrees C [above year 1850 baseline] we're talking about planetary scale biological annihilation of any multicellular species [ . . . due to crossing various tipping points.]"

Young people are right that world leaders have done a worse than terrible job responding, so, as Buddhist monk Thich Nhat Hanh said, "What we most need to do is to hear within ourselves the sounds of the Earth crying."

I am sad over 160 elephants recently died in Zimbabwe due to drought according to Tawanda Karombo in Harare for The Guardian January 17, 2024, and koalas have been scorched in Australia due to massive fires according to a 2019 YouTube by The Sun with over 47 million views. 

I am grateful people in 110 countries care enough to read this blog. I am also grateful for my huge following in Singapore. 

Monday, January 15, 2024

2023 Widely Noted as Hottest in About 125,000 Years

A friend led boatbuilding crews overseas. He told me when someone said, "Don't worry" it only meant one thing: "Worry." This post's headline, in a rational world, would be enough to topple Big Oil. Think about it.

The "125,000" year claim, or close versions, appeared in cbsnews.com citing "U.N.'s International Panel on Climate Change, the world's leading climate scientists," and by Rebecca Hersher of NPR's climate desk citing "official European Union temperature data," European Union scientists noted by Kate Abnett and Gloria Dickie at reuters.com, and Syed Munir Khasru in South China Morning Post.

My September 13, 2020 post noted, "in the film I Am, the Dalai Lama said the most important meditation of our time is critical thinking followed by action."

My December 14, 2023 post noted, "At least '130 nations' [out of 198 parties at COP28 calling for phase-out of fossil fuels] is [a better number] than the reported '80 countries' from [COP27] last year, but out of respect for island nations and most vulnerable countries and nonhumans, progress must be faster and more." I also wrote, "If 197 parties say yes, and one says no, that means no deal."

This climate situation reminds me of when I was a salmon troller/charter captain on the Starfisher out of Depoe Bay, Oregon. The challenge of fishing in thick fog was when huge schools of salmon were biting in tanker and cargo lanes. Even if a tanker or cargo captain saw you visually or with radar, you were still dead because turning speed and radius of a big ship, like COP process, was too slow to avoid impact. No matter how good fishing was in tanker or cargo lanes, old-timers knew it wasn't worth the risk in thick fog. It was better to accept smaller profits, as with renewable energy, to live to fish another day.

My favorite recent climate article is by Carly Dober in the January 12, 2024, issue of The Guardian, "As a psychologist I have witnessed a surge in climate grief. This is what I tell my clients."

"This is the Starfisher KDX 3175 clear channel 80, and back to 16. Over and out."

Wednesday, December 20, 2023

"Every day you get older. Now that's a law!" Butch Cassidy in film Butch Cassidy and The Sundance Kid (1969)

Reflecting on ever-escalating climate emergency, I recall a 3-minute film scene in Butch Cassidy and The Sundance Kid (1969) when Butch says, "Every day you get older. Now that's a law!" It's one of those cause and effect things. Many cultures note this cause and effect relation:

> karma -- Buddhism, Hinduism, Jainism, and Sikhism

> "So I say, 'that' comes out of 'this' and 'this' depends on 'that' - which is to say that 'this' and 'that' give birth to each other." Chuang Tzu

> "A man reaps what he sows." -- Galatians 6:7 in The Bible

> "This is, because that is. This is not, because that is not. This is like this, because that is like that.” -- Thich Nhat Hanh

> "For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction." -- Newton's third law of motion

You get the point. No matter what future COPs say, adding coal, oil, and gas warms Earth's average temperature, changing the climate, killing coral reefs, Amazon forests, Canadian forests, many people with floods, fires, droughts, bigger hurricanes and storms. Climate scientists reported we can not CCS (Carbon Capture and Storage) our way out of this in any reasonable time frame.

This is simple.

Don't let Big Oil or petrostates fool you into thinking the law of cause and effect doesn't matter. It matters.

If you are like me, feeling this reality "Cuts You Up" as Peter Murphy sang, on the way to uncomfortable, yet necessary, transformation into various kinds of activism.

If this fossil fuel madness continues long enough, millions or billions of humans will die in early miserable ways like billions of nonhumans already have

Still, I understand the importance of balance in life. Obsessing about anything, including climate madness, must be avoided. It's important to spend time near rivers, and in mountains, if one is to be useful in the long run. 

I'm grateful for three readers who offered money to continue this blog, one who offered me money to be a social influencer, and one who offered to pay me to include an editorial from an unnamed source. My answers were no, no, no, no, and no. I enjoy freedom to write what I want, when I want, how I want, and to stop writing. I mean I can't see Jesus wearing a Coca-Cola T-shirt on his way to be crucificed. Maybe I will write more posts, maybe not. We'll see. A great site for climate updates is Bill McKibben's The Crucial Years. I have also been impressed by Nick Breeze's video interviews

Thursday, December 14, 2023

"130 nations at Cop28 [called] for a fossil fuel phase-out" but Big Oil and Major Oil-Producing Nations Said No

Yesterday, I wrote an angry response to COP28, then deleted before posting because it didn't help, or add anything. A day later now, past the self-imposed "watch an ice cube fully melt before responding," I will try more creativity, reflection, and at least one solution. As I wrote in my March 17, 2018 post, the goal is "-- to speak the truth, and as [U. S. Poet Laureate from 2019-2022] Joy Harjo noted, 'to sing' while we are doing it."

For writer Douglas Adams, the number was 42. That was the "Answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe, and Everything" calculated over 7.5 million years by supercomputer Deep Thought in Adams' book The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. For us, that number is 198 because that is the number of parties at COP required to pass meaningful phase-out of fossil fuels thus preserving ecosystems in sea, land, and sky for billions of humans and nonhumans. If 197 parties say yes, and one says no, that means no deal. Future generations on a climate-degraded Earth will look back on this rule with astonished disgust. Sir Alec Issigonis was the car designer credited with the idea "a camel is a horse designed by committee." One could say yesterday's COP28 decision was begging nations to "Please, please, please, optionally, you know, if it's okay, if it doesn't affect your income or status, if it doesn't upset your Big Oil companies or high-level politicians, could you consider, maybe, sort-of 'transition away' from coal, oil and gas, any amount and timeline to be solely determined by you? Cough" This is worse than a camel posing as a horse. It calls to mind "Seven Social Sins" cited by Wiki as "a list by Frederick Lewis Donaldson that Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi published in his weekly newspaper Young India on October 22, 1925":

"1. Wealth without work.

2. Pleasure without conscience.

3. Knowledge without character.

4. Commerce without morality.

5. Science without humanity.

6. Religion without sacrifice.

7. Politics without principle."

The "sacrifice" part rings strong. A well-known poet cried as he told me, and others, his son scolded him for not sacrificing enough regarding the climate emergency. In coming years, the vast majority of us will have to sacrifice more. The longer the COP waits to phase-out fossil fuels, the greater the sacrifices, and the more pain, suffering, and death. It would be better to take the phase-out medicine now in 2023.

The Guardian Environment Editor Damian Carrington wrote December 14, 2023 in "Cop28 failed to halt fossil fuels’ deadly expansion plans – so what now?," "Petrostates fought fiercely against the call from 130 nations at Cop28 for a fossil fuel phase-out. That is because they are engaged in a colossal fossil fuel phase-up, already working on double the extraction that the planet can cope with."

At least "130 nations" is better than the reported "80 countries" from last year, but out of respect for island nations and most vulnerable countries and nonhumans, progress must be faster and more. Regarding these numbers, the entire European Union, with 27 countries, counts as one COP party.

Former U. S. Vice President Al Gore was quoted December 4, 2023, by The Guardian's Oliver Milman in "Agreement to phase out fossil fuels would be huge for humanity, says Gore," "There is only one measure of success for Cop28: will it include a commitment to phase out fossil fuels or not[?]”

Instead of Carbon Capture and Storage, it seems COP28 was, like 27 COPs before, more about "Politician Capture and Storage."

Marshall Islands' head of delegation, John Silk, was more gracious than me. BBC.com Climate Reporter Georgina Rannard quoted him Decemeber 13, 2023, in "More island nations join criticism of deal," "I came from my home in the islands to work with you all to solve the greatest challenge of our generation. I came here to build a canoe together for my country. [par break] Instead we have built a canoe with a weak and leaky hull, full of holes. Yet, we have to put it into the water because we have no other option [ . . . . ] And so we must sail this canoe. It has a strong sail - the intent to transition away from fossil fuels is progress that we have fought hard for."

From another angle, The Guardian's Fiona Harvey and Nina Lakhani clarified the "hypocrisy" of "rich countries" claiming to be "climate champions" December 12, 2023, in "Last-ditch attempt to forge fresh Cop28 deal after original rejected." They quoted Meena Raman, "a climate policy expert at her 16th Cop with the Third World Network" who said, "The global stocktake has been full of dishonesty and hypocrisy from the global north, especially the US and umbrella group of countries, who are suddenly claiming to be climate champions talking about the 1.5C north star, while refusing to talk about their historical emissions and historical responsibility. [par break] This is a super-red line for the United States. They don’t want to talk about equity, and insist that the text refers to all parties without any differentiation. [par break] They are setting up the developing countries for failure so they can blame, and show themselves as climate champions even as they are expanding fossil fuel production and consumption … This is hypocrisy, it’s climate colonialism, and climate injustice.”

I agree with Raman these are huge problems.

In a related matter, three posts ago I wrote, "I recently told a group where I was invited to speak that watching University of Manchester professor Kevin Anderson interview Johan Rockström, co-director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, made me grateful to be a climate poet because 'Rockström seemed restrained by his position, but a poet is free of what I call The Four Horsemen of Distraction: stakeholders, funding sources, constituencies, and agendas.'" COP28 had these four "horsemen" in "rich countries" vs. laws of physics for what is quickly needed to support human and nonhuman health on most of Earth. 

Imagining a future COP, sans greenwashing and distraction, this is from my next book Sharks and Flowers:

Big Oil Company Press Release at COP300

We understand
there are only
10 million humans left.

We’re not sorry.
This was war,
and we won.

So what if most
everything on Earth
must die?

We underwent
extensive blame
and denial therapy.

you and your children
are the problem.

It’s not our fault
oil kills people
and nonhumans.

We’re not responsible
for anything
but making money.

We’re not saints.
We own politicians
and corporations.

Remember your
ancestors elected them,
and bought our products.

Comments on an earlier draft of the COP28 proposed agreement/global stocktake were revealing as shown below.

Harvey, Lakhani, and Patrick Greenfield reported at The Guardian December 10, 2023 in "‘Come with solutions’: Cop28 president calls for compromise in final meetings," "Mary Robinson, chair of The Elders and former president of Ireland, asked for all countries to show true leadership, as Cop28 reached its critical final days. 'Those at the negotiating table at Cop28 are steering the course of our shared future [but] the science tells us we are in grave danger of bequeathing our children a completely unliveable world,' said Robinson. [par break] 'The nations thwarting progress are those with the greatest stakes in fossil fuels but also the most plentiful resources to act. Saudi Arabia and allies are holding talks hostage. However it is not the only country hindering progress: the USA, China, the EU and India have been happy to hide in the shadows cast.'”

In addition to COPs becoming a Big Oil charade, the process has also become a war of survival for some countries. On one side, the world's top climate scientists claim island nations will be lost to sea rise unless a phase-out of fossil fuels happens fast. On the other side, Xie Zhenhua, China’s climate envoy, was quoted by The Guardian's Fiona Harvey December 9, 2023 in "Cop28: China ‘would like to see agreement to substitute renewables for fossil fuels’," "I’ve already talked with the minister of one oil-producing country. And he said to me 80% to 90% of his country’s income depends on oil production. So if we phase out all the fossil energy, including oil, how will their country survive or develop?”

Regarding the new global stocktake draft, Samoa’s minister of natural resources and environment, Toeolesulusulu Cedric Schuster, was quoted by The Guardian's Adam Morton in its COP28 blog updates, "If we do not have strong mitigation outcomes at this Cop then this will be the Cop where 1.5C would have died. We will not sign our death certificates. We cannot sign on to text that does not have a strong commitment on phasing out fossil fuels."

Similarly, John Silk, head of delegation for Republic of Marshall Islands, was quoted in more of The Guardian's COP28 blog updates, "The Republic of the Marshall Islands did not come here to sign our death warrant. We came here to fight for 1.5 and for the only way to achieve that: a fossil fuel phase out. What we have seen today is unacceptable. We will not go silently to our watery graves. We will not accept an outcome that will lead to devastation for our country, and for millions if not billions of the most vulnerable people and communities."

Similarly, Teresa Anderson, Global Climate Lead at ActionAid, was quoted in more of The Guardian's COP28 blog updates, "[ . . . . ] It legitimises debunked technologies such as carbon capture and storage. It’s a paper fan being waved at a burning house. After all the momentum and hope that has been building here, it’s horrible. It’s devastating."

Given billions of human and nonhuman lives at stake, one possible solution would be for the global community to incentivize "Saudi Arabia and allies" with huge economic and social benefits to get a fossil fuel phase-out approved at COP29 November 11-24, 2024 "[tentative]" in Baku, Azerbaijan, or COP30, 2025, in Belém do Pará, Brazil near the Amazon forest. Otherwise, small-scale geoengineering seems likely with significant risk of wars due to intended or unintended effects on different countries. Large-scale geoengineering, if even possible over 1°C [above year 1850 baseline], would bring a financial burden for many, or all, future human generations, and serious risk of the dreaded "termination effect" if financing were cut for any reason. Tim Krueger, a James Martin Fellow at University of Oxford Geoengineering Programme, made a great Youtube about 3 minutes long explaining "The Termination Effect on GeoEngineering."

My favorite recent climate-related items are a short video of a "tipping point"; "Cabal of Oil Producers": Climate Scientist Kevin Anderson Slams Corporate Capture of COP28" at Democracy Now!; "COP28: will there be an agreement to phase out fossil fuels?" by Kate Abnett and Alison Withers December 7, 2023; "Sally Weintrobe: Climate Psychology & the struggle to care; Narcissistic v's Lively Entitlement," at Nick Breeze ClimateGenn; "Time to say ‘the F-words'? A fossil fuel fight takes center stage at the COP28 climate summit" updated December 4, 2023 by Sam Meredith at nbcphiladelphia.com; "At Cop28 it feels as if humanity’s shared lifeboat is sinking. There are only hours left to act" by Vanessa Nakate December 12, 2023 at The Guardian"My Turn: Can we face climate truth and respond together?" by Russ Vernon-Jones modified November 20, 2023 at Greenfield Recorder; and "Our Global Economy Won't Survive | Sandy Trust" Youtube at Planet: Critical.

Regarding the last item above, actuary Sandy Trust explains vital information for pension fund managers, bankers, financial services, and all those depending on them. Trust said, "You don't have to be an astronaut to know that mucking with your life support system is a pretty bad plan. [ . . . . ] By the time you get to 3°C [above year 1850 baseline] [ 49:19 on video] you're somewhere between 40 to kind of 80 percent GDP damage depending on your rate of warming. [ . . . . ] At what point do we expect 50 percent GDP destruction? Somewhere between 2070 and 2090. [ . . . . ] You don't have to think too much to start to imagine what sort of events in terms of food stress, heat stress, sea level rise, etc, would lead to that scale of damages, and whether it's recoverable." Readers of this blog may recall former Harvard Fellow Ye Tao was quoted, "two degrees is already passed [no matter what we do]" and "At three degrees C [above year 1850 baseline] we're talking about planetary scale biological annihilation of any multicellular species [ . . . ]"

In the past year I'm grateful for 4,260 pageviews from Singapore, noted by Michelle Zhu September 21, 2023 at businesstimes.com.sg as "South-east Asia’s most likely climate leader" based on a 2023 survey by Iseas – Yusof Ishak Institute.

I'm also grateful for 308 pageviews last week from Luxembourg. Wiki notes its capital is "one of the four institutional seats of the European Union (together with Brussels, Frankfurt, and Strasbourg) and the seat of several EU institutions, notably the Court of Justice of the European Union, the highest judicial authority."

Monday, November 13, 2023

A Good Time to Pray (post recycled from 1/9/18)

This is the first time I recycled a post. I thought it odd this post was visted recently until I read it again.

Today I saw James Temple's  December 6, 2017 article "Global Warming’s Worst-Case Projections Look Increasingly Likely" in MIT Technology Review citing a paper in Nature that claimed "under the the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s [IPCC's] steepest  prediction for greenhouse-gas concentrations [ . . . . ] the odds that temperatures will increase more than 4 [°C over pre-industrial level . . . ] by 2100 in this so-called 'business as usual' scenario increased from 62 percent to 93 percent." For context, consider the newly complied data means a prediction "15 percent hotter than the previous estimate" following a pattern of the situation being much worse than thought.

Consider what an increase of 4 °C over pre-industrial level means. In a December 31, 2013, article in The Guardian by Damian Carrington, Professor Steven Sherwood, at the University of New South Wales, in Australia, said "4C would likely be catastrophic rather than simply dangerous [ . . . ] For example, it would make life difficult, if not impossible, in much of the tropics, and would guarantee the eventual melting of the Greenland ice sheet and some of the Antarctic ice sheet."

If Greenland melts, it has been widely reported seas will rise "6 meters (20 feet),"  and if the Antarctic Ice Sheet melts, "60 meters (197 feet)."

Below I wrote we need a modern Alan Turing (invented computer) with enough vision to matter. However, the more one looks into the scale and trends, the more obvious it is that social engineering is needed as much as technological geoengineering, especially since, as was noted below by Stefan Rahmstorf, Potsdam University Professor of Physics of the Oceans, speaking at the 2017 Bonn Climate Conference, geoengineering is unlikely to work. Many people cringe when they hear the term "social engineering" so how about "global social awakening"?

Robert Bly's book The Light Around the Body quotes Jacob Boehme (1575-1624): "For according to the outward man, we are in this world, and according to the inward man, we are in the inward world…. Since then we are generated out of both worlds, we speak in two languages, and we must be understood also by two languages." and

"Dear children, look in what a dungeon we are lying, in
what lodging we are, for we have been captured by the spirit
of the outward world; it is our life, for it nourishes and
brings us up, it rules in our marrow and bones, in our flesh
and blood, it has made our flesh earthly, and now death has us."

It is possible the IPCC is wrong, but probably not.

If you are a prayerful person, now would be good.  I recall in Leonardo Dicaprio's Before the Flood, he met with my favorite Pope, Francis. Dicaprio noted "He said that as far as the Paris Conference is concerned, he felt was a step in the right direction, but certainly not enough. He feels we all need to keep speaking out about this issue as loud as we can, and that we must immediately take action. But more than anything, he said to pray for the human race."

If space aliens are watching, children of the same God, I hope they don't follow a Star Trek-like "Prime Directive" or "Temporal Prime Directive."

If they are following those, or aren't watching, it's up to you, me, and anyone willing to help.

Tuesday, November 7, 2023

Poem for COP28 in East Fork Eagle Creek, Columbia Gorge; James Hansen's "Global warming in the pipeline" (revised 23 May 2023) notes "Equilibrium global warming including slow feedbacks for today's human-made greenhouse gas (GHG) climate forcing (4.1 W/m2) is 10°C, reduced to 8°C by today's aerosols."; British Antarctic Survey researcher Dr. Kaitlin Naughten says "It looks like we’ve lost control of melting of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet." meaning, according to a related video, "slow addition of nearly 6 feet [1.8 meters] to sea levels" "in hundreds of years."

Poem for COP28
in East Fork Eagle Creek,
Columbia Gorge

Below 172-foot Tunnel Falls

a dead deer,

maybe from crossing

swift winter current.


I’m guessing

when flesh hit basalt

it ended quick.

Soon, coyotes would feast.


I knew it was metaphor

for something big

but didn’t know how big.

In a related matter, James Hansen's "Global warming in the pipeline" (revised 23 May 2023) appeared with this abstract:

"Improved knowledge of glacial-to-interglacial global temperature change implies that fast-feedback equilibrium climate sensitivity (ECS) is 1.2 +/- 0.3°C (2σ) per W/m2. Consistent analysis of temperature over the full Cenozoic era -- including 'slow' feedbacks by ice sheets and trace gases -- supports this ECS and implies that CO2 was about 300 ppm in the Pliocene and 400 ppm at transition to a nearly ice-free planet, thus exposing unrealistic lethargy of ice sheet models. Equilibrium global warming including slow feedbacks for today's human-made greenhouse gas (GHG) climate forcing (4.1 W/m2) is 10°C, reduced to 8°C by today's aerosols. Decline of aerosol emissions since 2010 should increase the 1970-2010 global warming rate of 0.18°C per decade to a post-2010 rate of at least 0.27°C per decade. Under the current geopolitical approach to GHG emissions, global warming will likely pierce the 1.5°C ceiling in the 2020s and 2°C before 2050. Impacts on people and nature will accelerate as global warming pumps up hydrologic extremes. The enormity of consequences demands a return to Holocene-level global temperature. Required actions include: 1) a global increasing price on GHG emissions, 2) East-West cooperation in a way that accommodates developing world needs, and 3) intervention with Earth's radiation imbalance to phase down today's massive human-made 'geo-transformation' of Earth's climate. These changes will not happen with the current geopolitical approach, but current political crises present an opportunity for reset, especially if young people can grasp their situation."

As a reminder, Gregor Aisch at Datawrapper provided this "[ . . . 2°C, 3°C, 4°C, 5°C] Degrees of Global Warming" graphic based on the Raftery et.al, 2017 article "Less than 2 °C warming by 2100 unlikely," in Nature Climate Change, and "Inspired" by Josh Holder, Niko Kommenda and Jonathan Watts' article in The Guardian"The three-degree world: the cities that will be drowned by global warming."

In more bad news, October 23, 2023 eurekalert.org quoted British Antarctic Survey researcher Dr. Kaitlin Naughten, "It looks like we’ve lost control of melting of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet. If we wanted to preserve it in its historical state, we would have needed action on climate change decades ago. The bright side is that by recognising this situation in advance, the world will have more time to adapt to the sea level rise that’s coming. If you need to abandon or substantially re-engineer a coastal region, having 50 years lead time is going to make all the difference."

This October 23, 2023 Associated Press YouTube featuring Naughten notes, "The full melt will take hundreds of years, but its slow addition of nearly 6 feet [1.8 meters] to sea levels will reshape where and how people live." She adds, "I definitely don't want people to read this study and say, 'Oh, there isn't any hope. We should just give up.' because the West Antarctic is not the whole world. There are so many other impacts of climate change that we probably still can avoid even if this isn't one of them."

Regarding recent humanitarian issues, please donate to Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders to help those suffering in Gaza, and for its offer to support the injured in Israel. I have supported Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders for many years, and greatly respect their work.

Sunday, October 29, 2023

Thinking About Antarctica

One of my most-visted posts August 4, 2023 quotes Graham Readfearn at The Guardian, July 29, 2023, and others, "[In Antarctica] an area bigger than Mexico has failed to freeze, worrying scientists." Jess Thomson reported at newsweek.com July 26, 2023, "Eliot Jacobson, a retired professor of mathematics and computer science, using data from Japan's National Institute of Polar Research" noted, the recent Antarctic melt is "about a 1-in-2.7[million] year event."

I am grateful to Amsterdam Quarterly for publishing my poem about Antarctica in the September 2023 issue which I hope doesn't come true. 

I also had a poem in their Autumn 2016 issue on Climate (Change), a poem in May 2014 called "Of Whales and the Hinckley Hunt on Christmas Eve, 1818," and a poem in September 2013 called "At Lake Absarraca" about rewilding buffalo and elk.

My favorite recent climate article is "A climate of the unthinkable on a burning Earth" by Andrew Y. Glikson October 26, 2023 at arctic-news.blogspot.com. I also appreciate the article he noted about Antarctic ecologist Dana Bergstrom and others silenced and/or punished for speaking. That article at abc.net.au/news notes, "Ecologists and climate scientists have told the ABC of a widespread culture of suppression and self-censorship. [par break] Sometimes it’s insidious, driven by the fear of losing funding or contracts. [par break] Sometimes it’s overt, through active gagging or academic careers being threatened. [par break] All of that for attempting to 'speak the truth' about environmental damage, ecosystem collapse and climate change."

I recently told a group where I was invited to speak that watching University of Manchester professor Kevin Anderson interview Johan Rockström, co-director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, made me grateful to be a climate poet because "Rockström seemed restrained by his position, but a poet is free of what I call The Four Horsemen of Distraction: stakeholders, funding sources, constituencies, and agendas."

Thursday, October 19, 2023

Cain and Abel

Other Christians and I were discussing what a climate sermon would be. At first, I suggested the story of Gideon which shows how a small group of committed people make all the difference when supported by God. Later, I thought the story of Cain and Abel may be better. I mean Cain did not give his best gifts to God, while Abel did. Out of jealousy, Cain killed Abel.

Genesis 4:9 notes, "Then the Lord said to Cain, 'Where is your brother Abel?'

'I don’t know,' he replied. 'Am I my brother’s keeper?'"

Genesis 4:10 notes, "The Lord said, 'What have you done? Listen! Your brother’s blood cries out to me from the ground. [ . . . . ]'"

Regarding the climate emergency, the story of Cain and Abel is important for two reasons. First, are we giving our best gifts to God to reduce suffering? Second, we are our brother's keeper. Specifically, Dr. Veerabhadran Ramanathan, Distinguished Professor of Atmospheric and Climate Sciences at Scripps Institution of Oceanography, and one of the Pope's climate advisors, noted in a 2018 meeting I attended, "It would take $450 per person per year in the top one billion people to change from our carbon economy to renewables" saving over 3 billion people that may otherwise die from exposure to 130 degree [54.4 Celsius] plus heat 30 years from now if humans fail to convert energy sources from coal and fossil fuels to "solar, wind, hydro, and possibly nuclear. [ . . . . ]" Based on what Ramanathan said in 2018, we now have 5 to 10 years "to solve the problem."

Rumi said, "God is the only real customer."

Friday, October 6, 2023

Art for Global Political Leaders Before COP28

Saturn Devouring His Son by Francisco Goya  (1746–1828) 

The official position taken by the Wikimedia Foundation is that "faithful reproductions of two-dimensional public domain works of art are public domain". This photographic reproduction is therefore also considered to be in the public domain in the United States. In other jurisdictions, re-use of this content may be restricted; see Reuse of PD-Art photographs for details.

Wiki notes Goya, extremely frustrated with political leaders of his time, secretly painted this on a wall in his house. It's obvious since James Hansen's U.S. Senate climate testimony 35 years ago, global political leaders have been "devouring" their children, and yours.

Hansen was later quoted, "Coal is the single greatest threat to civilization and all life on our planet. . . . the dirtiest trick that governments play on their citizens is that they are working for ‘clean coal.’ . . .The trains carrying coal to power plants are death trains. Coal-fired power plants are factories of death."

Similarly, Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, founding director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, noted in my August 25, 2018 post, "In Germany we should focus everything on the phase out of coal." Recent reports show now is a good time to phase out coal, and all fossil fuels, everywhere as soon as possible.

Monday, October 2, 2023

Climate Story

I ran Climate Conversations for professors and students two years at one of the colleges where I taught. In one meeting I tried to make it simple. I said, "It's like we're on a plane that pilots will crash into a cliff [unless they get political clearance to land which seems unlikely]. There are some parachutes, but not enough for most people."

"I don't like your airplane story," a professor challenged, adding something like, "I don't see it that way at all. I don't think we're all going to die."

"I didn't say everyone," I replied, then repeated, "There are some parachutes, but not enough for most people."

My February 23, 2020 post "Climate Lifeboats of the Rich and Famous?" explores how Earth's wealthiest, Bill Gates and Jeff Bezos, allegedly "bought -- then didn't buy" superyachts as they "can't go to Mars yet to escape or wait out climate chaos, [so] the sea may be the next best thing." About two years later I posted "The Last Two Men on Earth" noting, "Playing their cards right, they may be the last two surviving humans, as neurons shut down like light switches in Halloween mansions, and words fade as in flooded seaside libraries."

Unfortunately, the "cliff" in my plane story is fast approaching for those glancing up from their cell phones to look out the reality window. Crew members are telling everyone to "Calm down!" For example, U. S. Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry called UAE appointment of oil chief Sultan al-Jaber to oversee COP28 UN climate talks "a terrific choice" according to several sources. Let's see if Kerry feels that way after COP28 ends in December. 

Similary, Johan Rockström, co-director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, said in a video I posted September 19, 2023, "[ . . . . ] For an orderly phaseout [of fossil fuels] I think The Marshall Plan option is simply not an option. [ . . . . ]" Will Rockström feel that way in ten years at the end of 2033?

In contrast to Kerry and Rockström, I agree with actress Keira Knightley who imagines children asking in this short video, "The science and data were all there for everyone to see. Why didn't you stop this while you still could?" She adds, "Our governments must enter crisis mode before it's too late, urgently investing in and implementing policies to reduce carbon in the atmosphere." 

Another Extinction Rebellion video I like is by former UK police officers Rob Cooper, John Curran, and Richard Ecclestone

Rumi, translated by Daniel Liebert in the book RUMI - FRAGMENTS - ECSTACIES, said "[ . . . . ] don't flee across the chessboard of this world, for it is [God's] game and we are checkmate! checkmate!" In other words, it's best not to resist God and nature.

I am also grateful to Coleman Barks who in 2017 gave me permission to include his translation of Rumi's "An Empty Garlic," still one of the most-read posts here. 

Monday, September 25, 2023

Two Questions Before COP28

I was encouraged by former UN chief Christiana Figueres' comments reported by The Guardian's Dharna Noor September 21, 2023, "If [fossil fuel companies] are going to be [at COP28] only to be obstructors, and only to put spanners into the system, they should not be there.” The subtitle notes, "‘My patience ran out,’ said Christiana Figueres, who for years had advocated oil companies should be involved in policymaking talks." 

This complements my November 28, 2022, post "Circus" COPS and Civil Society "Clowns," and my November 21, 2022 post "Good COP, Bad COP" in which I wrote, "To use a football metaphor, imagine a fullback dropping the ball 27 consecutive games. Maybe it's time to get a new fullback. [par break] In this case, that means two separate COPs each year, one with fossil fuel interests, and one without. Global media, governments, and citizens could decide which COP to focus on. [ . . . . ] Politicians and Big Oil executives have children too, and may eventually see the shared responsibility to protect all children in every country. Unfortunately, the global community, especially in the global south, can't wait another 10 years or longer."

Similarly, Sandra Laville wrote in The Guardian June 22, 2023, "The Church of England is divesting from fossil fuels in its multibillion pound endowment and pension funds over climate concerns and what the church claims are recent U-turns by oil and gas companies."  Laville noted, "Responding to the announcement, Jennifer Larbie, Christian Aid’s head of global advocacy, said: 'It is telling that the Church of England, which has worked tirelessly to engage with the oil and gas industry and shift it on to a sustainable approach, has decided that these companies are beyond the pale.'"

Recently, the UK and Sweden seem to be following the advice of a Shell CEO who told Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, Founding Director of Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, "The climate problem is real but it is completely intractable. You can not solve it. So, let's get rich quick before the world ends, huh?" I included Schellnhuber's words in my August 25, 2018 post before the video was deleted. 

In other words, as I wrote in my October 10, 2022 post, "Deactivating Big Oil now will likely be no less dramatic than Deactivation of Hal 9000."

Here are two questions for my readers in 110 countries:

1) What would a Nonviolent Political D-Day look like at some future COP?

2) Would you like to do this before or after Earth's coral reefs are bleached, Amazon rainforest is gone, and island nations are submerged?

Late 2023 and Summer 2024 look bleak from various forecasts. In my previous post I linked Dave Borlace's video The heat may not kill you, but the global food crisis might! - September 17, 2023, in which he noted a Mintec August 21, 2023 paper with "forecast updates [ . . . ] pointing towards a Very Strong El Nino event [ . . . ] triggering extreme and potentially destructive weather globally," and a Barclay's January 2023 paper noting "extreme weather" as one of three factors in "the current predicament" [ . . . . ] "with the food price volatility further exposing the fragility of our global food system: rising food insecurity, social unrest, human displacement and migration are all possible effects."

I also chose Dave Borlace's new video Big Oil, Big Lies and Big Al... as one of my favorites. It was posted yesterday, and already has 87,496 views. 

Tuesday, September 19, 2023

Johan Rockström, IPCC, and World Leaders Bet Human Future on Fantasy-Scale Direct Air Capture, and Carbon Capture/Storage

Video begins at 33:47.

Unsaid in the above video is that world leaders would rather use risky, and possibly war-producing, unilateral geoengineering than lose privilege and negative emission technologies fantasy. 

As Al Gore, former Harvard Fellow Ye Tao, and Kevin Anderson (above) have clearly shown, negative emission technologies are not realistic solutions given scale, rate of climate change, and time it will take these machines/devices to make meaningful carbon reductions. Instead, fossil fuel use must be quickly cut. God and the universe have given us a winning lottery ticket with a blue planet supporting life, and world leaders are trashing it.

In the above video Johan Rockström says at 33:47: "If you take away negative emission technologies, you would exceed 10 percent [on mitigation pathways to reduce carbon] very rapidly [to meet our goals]. You would be more than 10 to 15 percent. [ . . . ] That's not revolution. That is a complete disruption of the global economy. [ . . . ] I mean then you need to bulldoze down coal-fire plants basically. You would be in a compete global Marshall Plan. It's a war zone agenda."

Kevin Anderson responds, "[ . . . . ] Our choice to fail over the last 30 years has brought us to this position. [ . . . . ] Our way out of the Marshall Plan is to say we are going to have these negative emissions. I think we need to say that, okay, that's one way out of it -- if they work. Another way out of it is the Marshall Plan. [ . . . .] I would have a guess when we say 'That's not feasible.' many people elsewhere in the world say, 'Of course it's feasible. We've been living like that for years.' And other people live good quality of lives in the developing countries as well [ . . . ] with much lower consumption than we have on average in the global north, let alone the wealthy of us in the global north. [ . . . . ]" 

Rockström responds, "[ . . . . ] For an orderly phaseout [of fossil fuels] I think The Marshall Plan option is simply not an option. [ . . . . ]"

Anderson acknowledged, "I'm not against doing these technologies. I think we should be researching them. Deploy them if they meet broader sustainability, ecological, and social sustainability criteria. [ . . . . ] But to deeply rely on [negative emission technologies] in all of our models is to me a systemic bias, and it has stopped us asking other questions. [ . . . . ] We, as [an academic] community here, have not served society well because we have closed that debate down."

I agree with Anderson about the problem of relying on negative emission technologies. I recall Al Gore's criticism of a direct air capture machine, "They're improving this, and [in] the new model seven years from now each of these machines is going to be able to capture 27 seconds worth of annual emissions."

Prof. David Kipping, Carl Sagan Fellow at Harvard College Observatory, made an excellent video September 19, 2023 called Direct Air Capture Vs Thermodynamics to help readers understand the enormous challenges. 

My third favorite recent video is Dave Borlace's The heat may not kill you, but the global food crisis might! - September 17, 2023. I was also impressed by one of the saddest, and most honest, cartoons I have seen August 28, 2023 done by First Dog on the Moon in The Guardian called I only read about climate change now because I have to.

Given our small window of opportunity to avoid worst climate impacts, negative emission technologies appear nowhere near as good as a Hail Mary pass thrown by a rookie quarterback with an injured elbow against the wind.

To be clear, stakes are high. Founding director of the Potsdam Institute Hans Joachim Schellnhuber was quoted by Paddy Manning in a July 9, 2011 article in The Sydney Morning Herald: "in a 4 degree warmer world, the population ' . . . . carrying capacity estimates [are] below one billion people.'" Today theworldcounts.com notes Earth's population is over 8 billion. 

December 3, 2019 I suggested "Barry McGuire's protest song 'Eve of Destruction' written by P. F. Sloan in 1964 is a good COP25 theme song." The same goes for COP26, COP27, and it seems from Al Gore's comments COP28 (Nov 30, 2023 – Dec 12, 2023).

Monday, August 21, 2023

Climate Disasters Are Here, and Worse Predicted to Come

I was fishing in Canada, and took a lunch break in a lodge where I sat beside two men in heated conversation. I wrote about this in my September 6, 2018 post. One was jilted by an attractive woman, and ranted about the injustice. The other listened awhile then said, "Look around!" In other words, "Notice reality around you." Similarly, fossil fuels have been attractive, yet deadly. I mean, "Look around!" at recent climate-related events: MauiCalifornia, Washington State, Florida, Vermont, PhoenixKelowna B.C.IndonesiaSloveniaTenerifeBeijing, Niger, Algeria, Morocco, NorwayChile and Argentina

What should one do? I like Joanna Macy's story about Thich Nhat Hanh at the start of this video, "When he was asked, 'What's the most important thing we can do for the sake of life on Earth?' And I think his questioners were asking, you know, should we work in the system, or sit on a zafu, or meditate, or climb the barricades? [ . . . . ] He said, 'What we most need to do is to hear within ourselves the sounds of the Earth crying.'"

Nhat Hanh's advice seems like a good first step to help people know where to go, and what to do.

Tuesday, August 15, 2023

Al Gore "Hot and Bothered" About Big Oil's "Carbon Capture and Storage" and "Direct Air Capture" Plans

August 17, 2023 Update -- CBS News anchor Errol Barnett interviewed Washington Post reporter Evan Halper about the multibillion dollar "Giant Direct Air Capture Vacuums" being built in Texas and Louisiana, and planned for other states. Halper said, "You just need to look outside to know the situation is desperate, and [ . . . ] we're way behind where we need to be in terms of cutting emissions, in terms of transitioning away from fossil fuels, and so we're looking at these other kind of moonshot ideas [ . . . . ] There is a case to be made that they can be part of a solution, but [ . . . ] on the flip side there is worry [ . . . ] these technologies that don't really even work yet are going to give people a sense of complacency that [ . . . ] there is a technological solution to this, and lifestyles don't need to be changed, and this is getting figured out when it really isn't." In response, I agree with Al Gore and former Harvard Fellow Ye Tao below. Tao said, "Any form of direct air capture by industrial method will not be able to work at scale, and to make a measurable impact to the climate crisis in less than several centuries of time. The basic reason is the process of demixing the air is a highly energy-intensive process. Just imagine if you had to separate a pile of well-mixed salt and pepper [ . . . . ]"

In other words, the Vacuums seem as crazy as the "BASH operation fails" scene in the film Don't Look Up -- except this time the stakes are real life. It was amusing/terrifying, in a tragicomedy-way, when Barnett asked Halper in the CBS News Vacuum story above, "This is the kind of thing that sounds like a joke, right? Is this a parody? I'm wondering are we out of ideas as far as just putting less CO2 into the atmosphere?"

Similarly, in Gore's TED Talk above at 14:05, he shows what looks like long pillow cases behind a Direct Air Capture Vacuum. Gore says, "This is state of the art. Looks pretty impressive, doesn't it?" Audience laughter can be heard, to which Gore replies, "I had the same thought. [ . . . . ] They're improving this, and [in] the new model seven years from now each of these machines is going to be able to capture 27 seconds worth of annual emissions."

President Biden should have listened to Gore's recent angry TED Talk before Biden continued to support "$1.2 billion to help build the nation’s first two commercial-scale plants to vacuum carbon dioxide pollution" as quoted by New York Times reporter Coral Davenport August 11, 2023. She added, "The 2021 bipartisan infrastructure law included $3.5 billion to fund the construction of four commercial-scale direct air capture plants. Friday’s announcement covered the first two." Davenport summarized Gore's above TED Talk, "Gore gave a blistering critique of direct air capture technology, calling its use a 'moral hazard' that would enable fossil fuel producers to continue to pollute. [par break] 'It’s useful to give them an excuse for not ever stopping oil,' he said. 'That gives them a license to continue producing more and more oil and gas.' [par break] Mr. Gore noted that the current cost of direct air capture technology was extraordinarily high and that the process required so much energy that it would make more sense to prevent carbon emissions in the first place rather than try to clean them up after the fact. Oil and gas companies say that the costs will fall and that the processes will improve in the coming years."

Regarding that last sentence above, in my February 19, 2022 post, I quoted former Harvard Fellow Ye Tao, "Any form of direct air capture by industrial method will not be able to work at scale, and to make a measurable impact to the climate crisis in less than several centuries of time. The basic reason is the process of demixing the air is a highly energy-intensive process. Just imagine if you had to separate a pile of well-mixed salt and pepper. So to create order out of disorder takes a lot of energy, and that is guaranteed by the laws of thermodynamics. So it doesn't really matter how much engineering you put onto it. We need an operation the size of the U. S. Military six thousand years [ . . . ] to really achieve what these companies are calling for."

Al Gore should have ended his TED Talk with a more angry, "DIVEST NOW!" He should have mentioned the need to "Dynamite The Energy Charter Treaty" noted by Dr Julia Steinberger July 9, 2023 at Nick Breeze ClimateGenn. Steinberger noted, "[Big Oil companies] have been acting in such a way that their social license should be removed." Céline Keller's comic book Dawn Of The ECT, available in multiple languages, was highlighted.

President Biden must listen to former Harvard Fellow Ye Tao.

Last week I told a professor about Michael Mann's October 2020 claim, as noted 24:35 in Gore's TED Talk, "Once the world reaches net zero CO2 emissions global temperatures will stop increasing in as soon as three to five years." Crossing tipping points, it seems, may make this a missed opportunity. 

Regarding level of crisis, writer/editor Jeff Goodell said in a Jul 21, 2023 Ten Across video at 40:47 geoengineering is "a very dangerous idea [ . . . ] a lot of people tell me personally I should not be talking about, and [ . . . . ] we don't know how things will go, if this will mess up the monsoons that bring water for millions of people in Asia. It could have all kinds of unexpected consequences, but I think that it's an important thing to talk about openly because we are moving in that direction. I think it's an important thing to have good legitimate scientists really looking at it so we understand better what the risks are, and I think it's emblematic of the really dumb stuff we may be doing as this emergency gets deeper and deeper, and clearer and clearer. And we're going in that direction. It's a doable thing, and I kind of think, to be honest, it's inevitable for better or for worse. And that's a very scary thought."

It was reported by DW News, August 24, 2022, China used geoengineering, as the country said it would, in a desperate effort to save it's 2022 fall harvest.

I'm grateful The Washington Post reporter Kate Selig wrote August 14, 2023, "Judge rules in favor of Montana youths in landmark climate decision." She noted, it's "the first ruling of its kind nationwide," and "The ruling could influence how judges handle similar cases in other states." My June 5, 2023 post noted, "Juliana v. United States filed by Our Children’s Trust is back on. According to a June 1, 2023 Associated Press article at columbian.com, the 2015 suit was heard by 'A three-member panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals [that] dismissed the case in 2020 after finding that [U.S. District Court Judge] Aiken lacked the power to order or design a climate recovery plan sought in the lawsuit. [par break] The plaintiffs then filed an amended complaint asking to change their lawsuit to seek a ruling that the nation’s fossil fuel-based energy system is unconstitutional.'"