Meet the Teenagers Leading a Climate Change Movement. #auspol #qldpol #StopAdani #NoNewCoal #Longman

By Alexandra Yoon-Hendricks

“The march is a launch,” Jamie Margolin, the founder of Zero Hour, said of Saturday’s demonstration in Washington. “It isn’t, ‘That’s it, we’re done.’”Erin Schaff for The New York Times

WASHINGTON — Some of them met on Instagram. Others coordinated during lunchtime phone conferences. Most of them haven’t even graduated from high school.

The teenagers behind Zero Hour — an environmentally focused, creatively minded and technologically savvy nationwide coalition — are trying to build a youth-led movement to sound the alarm and call for action on climate change and environmental justice.

For the last year, a tight-knit group spanning both coasts has been organizing on social media.

The teenagers kicked off their campaign with a protest on Saturday at the National Mall in Washington, along with sister marches across the country.

As sea levels rise, ice caps melt and erratic weather affects communities across the globe, they say time is running out to address climate change.

The core organizing group of about 20 met with almost 40 federal lawmakers about their platforms on Thursday, and hope to inspire other teenagers to step up and demand change.

“The march is a launch. It isn’t, ‘That’s it, we’re done,’” said Jamie Margolin, the founder of Zero Hour. “It means it doesn’t give them an excuse to be like, ‘I don’t know what the kids want.’ It’s like, ‘Yes, you do.’”

They are trying to prove the adults wrong, to show that people their age are taking heed of what they see as the greatest crisis threatening their generation.

“In our generation when we talk about climate change, they’re like: ‘Ha ha, that’s so funny.

It’s not something we’ll have to deal with,’” said Nadia Nazar, Zero Hour’s art director. “‘Oh, yeah, the polar bears will just die, the seas will just rise.’ They don’t understand the actual caliber of the destruction.”

The group is building off the momentum of other recent youth-led movements, such as the nationwide March for Our Lives rallies against gun violence.

“No one gives you an organizing guide of how to raise thousands of dollars, how to get people on board, how to mobilize,” Ms. Margolin said. “There was no help. It was just me floundering around with Dory-like determination, like, ‘Just keep swimming,’” she said, referring to the Disney movie “Finding Nemo.”

At the Sierra Club’s Washington headquarters on Wednesday, as Zero Hour members continued to make preparations, six of the coalition’s leaders and founding members discussed how they became involved with the group, and why they think it’s one of young people’s best shots at creating a healthy, sustainable environment.

Ms. Margolin said she has been overwhelmed by the response from people of all ages to Zero Hour. “We’ve proven ourselves,” she said.Erin Schaff for The New York Times

‘We are on the verge of something amazing’

Jamie Margolin, 16, Seattle

“I’ve always planned my future in ifs,” Ms. Margolin said. If climate change hasn’t destroyed this, if the environment hasn’t become that.

So for the last few years, Ms. Margolin has worked to raise awareness about climate justice issues.

A passionate writer, she went through an “op-ed phase,” submitting essays to publications, like one titled “An Open Letter to Climate Change Deniers” published in the monthly magazine Teen Ink.

Still, Ms. Margolin thought that she and other young people could — and should — be doing more.

“I had had this idea building up since January, since the Women’s March” last year, Ms. Margolin said. “The kind of idea that was nagging me and you try to ignore, but it’s an idea poking you.”

At a Princeton University summer program last year, she met other teenagers interested in taking action on climate change and created Zero Hour.

They began to plan a huge protest in the nation’s capital.

On social media, Ms. Margolin espoused factoids and reached out to other young activists.

A professed climate justice advocate, Ms. Margolin has kept the movement inclusive, putting the stories and concerns of those most directly affected by environmental issues at the heart of Zero Hour’s mission.

Youths from in and around the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation spoke on Saturday, and others repeatedly called attention to those killed during

Hurricane Maria and threatened by rising sea levels in the Marshall Islands.

Since starting Zero Hour, Ms. Margolin said she had been overwhelmed by the response from people of all ages.

Dozens of environmental advocacy groups and nonprofits have approached the coalition, looking to donate to or sponsor it.

“We flipped the scenario as the underdog. We’ve proven ourselves,” she said. “We are on the verge of something amazing. We’re going to change history.”

Kallan Benson has encouraged other young people to express their concerns about the climate through art.Erin Schaff for The New York Times

Showing a movement’s artistic side

Kallan Benson, 14, Crownsville, Md.

When Ms. Benson was planning a trip to the Peoples Climate March last year with her family, she knew she wanted to make a statement.

Ms. Benson doesn’t consider herself an artist. But a 24-foot-wide play parachute that she covered in a gigantic monarch butterfly design and hundreds of signatures from children in her community became a canvas for her to display the dire future she and coming generations may face, and express optimism that they will overcome it.

A chance encounter with the son of the founder of the nonprofit Mother Earth Project led Ms. Benson to encourage children around the world to create parachutes of their own made of recycled bedsheets (to be “environmentally conscious,” of course).

Inspired by the AIDS Memorial Quilt that has been unfurled on the National Mall in years past, some of those parachutes, sent from every continent except Antarctica, were laid out on the grass during Saturday’s march.

“The original idea was, ‘We got to get them on the National Mall,’ but then we thought that, ‘Well that shouldn’t be our first exhibit; it’s a little ambitious,’” Ms. Benson said.

“Then we talked to Zero Hour and they were like, ‘Hey, why don’t you bring them out?’” she continued. “I never imagined it would get this far.”

Madelaine Tew’s finance team has raised about $70,000 for Zero Hour.Erin Schaff for The New York Times

Where business and the environment meet

Madelaine Tew, 15, Teaneck, N.J.

As Zero Hour’s director of finance, Ms. Tew has had to get creative about securing funds and grants.

On the day of a deadline for a major grant — $16,000 from the Common Sense Fund — Ms. Tew’s school was hosting an event where seniors gave presentations about their internships. But she knew the grant would be a huge boost for Zero Hour.

“So I went to the nurse and was like: ‘Oh, I have cramps. Can I lie down with my computer?’” she said. “Then I just went in and wrote the whole grant.”

Her stunt paid off. Zero Hour secured the grant, and now Ms. Tew’s finance team, made up of students just like her, has raised about $70,000 for the coalition.

Ms. Tew, who attends a magnet high school where she takes classes in business and finance, has been involved in clubs to get the school and local businesses to adopt more renewable practices. But before meeting Ms. Margolin at the Princeton summer program last year, she thought those local efforts were “as far as you can go” for someone her age.

“It shifted from youth being a limitation to ‘it doesn’t matter,’” Ms. Tew said.

Though the practices of big corporations can sometimes anger environmentalists, for Ms. Tew, combining “my love for business and my care, my concern for climate” just makes sense.

“In many cases you can see how the environmental movement can be rooted in the way we do business,” she said.

That could take the form of encouraging companies to divest from fossil fuel industries or having local communities build their own solar or wind grids.

“We’re not just talking about building more cooperative farms,” Ms. Tew said, but also figuring out how to integrate ethical and sustainable environmental policies into business so “we can continue the American economy’s future.”

Iris Fen Gillingham believes that sustainable lifestyles are essential for the success of her generation.Erin Schaff for The New York Times

‘Repping the younger generation’

Iris Fen Gillingham, 18, Livingston Manor, N.Y.

When three floods in the mid- to late 2000s swept through the vegetable farm Iris Fen Gillingham’s family owned in the Catskill Mountains, the topsoil was washed away and their equipment was submerged, eliminating their main source of income.

The floods devastated Ms. Gillingham’s family, which has always lived “very consciously with the land and with nature,” she said. Even her name, Iris Fen, like the flower and marshy wetland behind her house, alludes to that attachment.

“I have a pair of mittens that are made out of one of our Icelandic sheep, Rosalie,” Ms. Gillingham said. “My brother named her, I remember her being born and I’ve seen her grow up and my mom sheering her and spinning the wool.”

So when landsmen came to explore the possibility of hydraulic fracturing — a technique of oil and gas extraction also known as fracking — in their neighborhood when she was about 10, Ms. Gillingham joined her father, an environmental activist, in speaking out at local meetings, often as the youngest in the room.

“It was always myself repping the younger generation,” Ms. Gillingham said. “Part of that was my brother and I saying, ‘We don’t want to play on contaminated soil,’” (The Environmental Protection Agency has concluded that fracking can contaminate drinking water in some circumstances.)

But part of it was also knowing firsthand how essential a sustainable lifestyle — growing food at home, conscious spending, building greener homes — will be for her generation.

“We’re setting aside our differences and we are building a family and a community using our skills and our creativity,” Ms. Gillingham said of the movement. “We’re having fun, we’re laughing with each other, but we’re also talking about some pretty serious issues and injustices happening in this country.”

Nadia Nazar got her start as an activist by trying to persuade people not to go to SeaWorld.Erin Schaff for The New York Times

Linking animal rights and environmentalism

Nadia Nazar, 16, Baltimore

Before joining Zero Hour, Nadia Nazar considered herself mostly an animal-rights activist. When she was 12, she saw a PETA video on slaughterhouses and immediately became a vegetarian.

“I had just gotten a cat,” Ms. Nazar said. “What if my cat was that cow?”

She got her start as an activist by trying to persuade people in her neighborhood not to go to SeaWorld, which has been criticized over its treatment of animals. (“I was slightly successful in that.”)

Then she dug deeper into the root causes of animal suffering and death.

“I found out how so many species are endangered by climate change, and how many are dying and going towards extinction that we caused ourselves,” Ms. Nazar said.

During a class, she stumbled upon Ms. Margolin’s Teen Ink essay and followed her on Instagram. And a little over a year ago, when Ms. Nazar saw a post by Ms. Margolin calling for action, she knew it was her chance to put her artistic skills to use. As art director, she helped organize a smaller art festival on Friday, and created the majority of the graphic elements for the coalition.

“Her story said: ‘I’m going to do it. Who wants to join me?” Ms. Nazar said. She immediately messaged Ms. Margolin. She was in.

Zanagee Artis said he was inspired by Ms. Margolin’s enthusiasm to do “a big, big thing.”Erin Schaff for The New York Times

Working together toward a bigger goal

Zanagee Artis, 18, Clinton, Conn.

Zanagee Artis’s journey as an environmentalist began in the same place many other budding activists get their start — in a high school club.

During his junior year, he had big ambitions for his school: the building facilities department would finally start recycling white paper, students would start composting their food waste and the lunchroom would be free of plastic foam trays.

“I’m going to accomplish all these things and I’m going to go to the administration and tell them, ‘Stuff needs to change,’” Mr. Artis said.

But, he said, “nothing ever happened.” Mr. Artis said the problem was clear: Without engaging other students who might be interested, change was unlikely to happen.

So he started a sustainability committee within the school’s National Honor Society, and the results spoke for themselves. The group was able to buy the school an aquaponic system — a tank-based farming system that combines hydroponics (water-based planting) and aquaculture (fish cultivation) — and raise $700 to install water bottle refilling stations.

“So we accomplished all these things because we worked together as a community, and that’s how I feel about the climate movement,” he said.

Still, Mr. Artis said he “really didn’t think I could do much” beyond his local community until he met Ms. Margolin and Ms. Tew last summer at Princeton. Inspired by Ms. Margolin’s enthusiasm to do “a big, big thing,” Mr. Artis became Zero Hour’s logistics director, in charge of submitting permits for Saturday’s march, estimating attendance numbers, checking for counterprotests and helping sister marches with logistical issues.

“I was like, ‘Yes!’” he said with a satisfying clap. “‘Let’s do it.’”

Press link for more: New York Times


#ClimateChange: a global heatwave #auspol #qldpol #NoNewCoal #StopAdani

The Guardian view on climate change: a global heatwave | Editorial | Opinion | The Guardian

EditorialTue 10 Jul 2018 05.27 AEST

The British are parochial about weather.

It is our cherished grievance, not to be shared with foreigners.

Perhaps it is the fact that our weather tends to come from the west, across the Atlantic, and not from our neighbours in Europe (unless it’s a “beast from the east”) which reinforces the belief that our weather is a uniquely British problem. But though we cannot say definitively that the current heatwave is caused by carbon emissions, it fits the pattern of long-term changes that we call climate.

It is part of a global phenomenon, even if not the most important part.

The really significant change is happening in eastern Siberia at the moment, where a completely unprecedented heatwave is warming that Arctic coastline, with consequences that are unpredictable in detail but surely bad on a large scale.

Siberia is a vulnerable point in the global climate system for two reasons.

The obvious one is the Arctic ice. The more that melts, the less remains to reflect heat back into the atmosphere. Water, being dark, absorbs heat better so there is a feedback loop set up. That is worrying, but it may be less dangerous than the feedback caused by the melting of the layer formerly known as the permafrost.

This releases carbon and methane – more methane will be released from under the warming sea – and both are powerful greenhouse gases.

Instability in the Arctic affects the whole of the northern hemisphere, as it increases the chances that the northern jet stream, will stick for longer than usual in a particular pattern.

When that happens, the weather stops changing in the affected areas.

Heatwaves are prolonged and so are cold snaps.

Extremes of every sort, such as the rains in Japan which have killed more than 100 people, become more likely.

What seems to be happening at the moment is that a fixation of the jet stream has produced the heatwave in Siberia as well as ours here.

Again, this is yet another feedback loop.

This is a heatwave which makes further, hotter heatwaves more likely in the future.

Although there is enormous uncertainty about the exact progression of climate change, the direction of travel is entirely clear.

This is a problem that demands coordinated global action.

The Paris accords are an effort in that direction, but they are being sabotaged. British, or English nationalism about the weather is mildly comical but the selfish and ignorant attitudes of the Trump administration are purely tragic for the whole world.

Still, there is more chance of changing the climate than there is of changing the mind of Mr Trump.

While the US continues to sulk on climate change and to be driven by short-term imperatives of profit, the best any British government can do is to prepare for a change in the weather here.

In 20 years’ time, the heat of the last week will no longer be news.

It will be routine.

The effect on old people, on schools, and on hospitals will be grim.

A responsible government would be planning for this perfectly foreseeable outcome.

Ours, however, is otherwise  preoccupied.

Press link for more: The Guardian

Journalists Challenged To Focus On #ClimateChange #auspol #qldpol #QandA #TheDrum #NoNewCoal #StopAdani

Journalists Challenged To Focus On Climate Change

A Communications Analyst at the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) has urged the Ghanaian media to focus attention on climate change and its related issues to create awareness among the people and the need to develop necessary actions that would make the country more resilient to climate change.

Ms. Praise Nutakor, said the media had the responsibility to report adequately on issues related to climate change, green economy and other related issues that had serious implications for the country’s future development.

Speaking at a day’s training workshop for selected journalists from the northern sector of the country in Kumasi, she said encouraging the people to understand climate change and develop measures that would help mitigate its effect, while promoting green economy, was necessary to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The workshop was organized by the Ministry of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation (MESTI) with financial support from the UNDP, while the Partnership for Action on Green Economy (PAGE) provided technical support.

The participants were taken through the concepts of climate change and green economy, the national policies, institutional arrangement for SDG implementation projects initiatives on the policies, among others.

Mr Peter Dery, Head of Climate Change and Sustainable Development at MESTI, said the Ministry was supporting the development of climate change and green economy related projects and programmes in order to achieve the SGDs in medium and long term planning process.

He stressed the need for the harnessing of green economy in the country’s development process to promote healthy environment and sustainable development.

Mr Dery also called for the intensification of the country’s afforestation programme while working to protect water bodies and stop actions that further depleted the ozone.

Press link for more: Modern Ghana

#ClimateChange will get a whole lot worse before it gets better. #auspol #qldpol #NoNewCoal #StopAdani

Climate change will get a whole lot worse before it gets better, according to game theory

To understand why governments continually fail to take decisive action against climate change you’ve got to have a strong grasp on game theory and the tragedy of the commons

Roger Highfield11:05 AM

A firefighter douses flames from a backfire in San Andreas, California

Getty Images / JOSH EDELSON / Stringer

It’s going to get a lot worse before it gets any better. According to new research published in Nature, humanity will witness marked sea level rises and frequent killer heatwaves before governments take decisive action against climate change. And to predict the future, mathematicians have turned to game theory.

The paper, published by a team of mathematicians, uses game theory to explain why it is so hard to protect the environment, updating it so they could model the effects of climate change, overuse of precious resources and pollution of pristine environments.

The bad news is that the model suggests that, when it comes to climate change, things might have to get demonstrably worse before they can get better. The good news, on the other hand, is that game theory could help policymakers to craft new and better incentives to help nations cooperate in international agreements.

The researchers used one of the best known social dilemmas in game theory — called the tragedy of the commons — to reach their predictions. The tragedy of the commons was first described in the 19th century by William Forster Lloyd, an Oxford University political philosopher. Lloyd analysed the overuse of common land (also known as a “common”) by people who had rights to use it — to graze their sheep, for example — to air the idea that resources that do not clearly belong to an individual or a group are likely to be overexploited, since conserving them isn’t in the interest of the individual.

The idea was later made famous by American ecologist Garrett Hardin, in a 1968 paper published in the journal Science. The tragedy of the commons has become one of the most used metaphors among experts to illustrate our chronic inability to sustain a resource that everybody is free to use and, alas, just as free to abuse.

We see examples of this dilemma in our daily lives, from litter on the subway to the reluctance to empty the dishwasher in the shared student kitchen. The most extreme example, however, is the current environmental crisis.

Previous attempts to come up with a mathematical model of the environmental tragedy made the unrealistic assumption that the commons remained unchanged as people exploited them – they played the same game in every round of the model. These approaches could not study the effects of a degrading environment, such as an increasingly overfished sea or a river as it was being polluted, for example. In their new Nature paper Martin Nowak of Harvard University, working with Christian Hilbe and Krishnendu Chatterjee of the Institute of Science and Technology Austria, and Stepan Simsa of Charles University in Prague, detail a more faithful way to model – and understand – the dilemma with mathematics.

“It is based on the simple idea that our actions today change the game we can play tomorrow,” Nowak says. The games in question involve encounters between people where they can either work together and cooperate or pursue their own selfish motives instead. “Depending on what you and I are doing, we move to another game so, as an example, you and I write an article together and, if we do well, we may do a book and, if this continues, we might set up a research institute.”

When they explored the new mathematical model, the scientists found that this dependence on players’ actions could greatly increase the chance that players cooperate, provided the right conditions were in place. “We have shown how environmental feedback can spur cooperation,” says Nowak, who has spent decades exploring the laws of cooperation.

These feedback factors include how quickly our resources — be it the ocean or the planet’s ozone layer — degrade. This might explain why relatively rapid action to ban chemicals such as chlorofluorocarbons were prompted when a dramatic drop in atmospheric ozone that protects life from the Sun’s harmful UV rays was detected by a British team working in Antarctica in 1985. A global agreement to protect the stratospheric ozone layer, the Montreal Protocol, was finalised in 1987 and went into force a couple of years later.

This is not the case with climate change. Although we know that glaciers are shrinking, sea levels are rising, and extreme weather events — from hurricanes to heatwaves — are becoming more intense, these effects are often complex and occur over longer timescales, so establishing a clear link between them and climate change is less straightforward. This, according to Nowak, might explain why it has been more difficult to come up with effective international cooperation to curb climate change driven by greenhouse gases.

The new mathematical model suggests the global environment has to deteriorate in a dramatic way – hurricanes becoming more intense, more droughts and heatwaves – before our eyes before governments will be spurred on to make things better. “When human activity leads to drastic environmental deterioration, through global warming, cooperation becomes the winning strategy,” Nowak says.

However, this new mathematical model also enables policymakers to explore future possibilities raised by climate models and explore next steps on a more rational basis. “This opens up many new possibilities,” says Nowak. Because key impacts of climate change occur over a long timescale, one option is not to rely on environmental decline to spur policymakers into action. Instead we need to devise incentives that work over much shorter timescales, say a year or so. “We even show which feedback is needed,” Nowak says.

“You could give people, cities or countries financial incentives to work together on a problem and, if they succeed, they get these incentives and can move to bigger and more complex problems, along with even larger rewards.” The financial incentives hinge on the actions of the players, whether they are people or countries. “Cooperation leads to more valuable games, defection to less valuable ones, and can be designed to occur quickly enough to make a difference,” Nowak says. “This new approach is a game changer.”

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Higher ambition needed to meet Paris Targets #auspol #qldpol #ClimateChange #Divest @ElliottShayne CEO @ANZ_AU #NoNewCoal #StopAdani #CoralnotCoal

Higher ambition needed to meet Paris climate targets


With current climate policies and efforts to increase clean power generation, the remaining use of fossil fuels in industry, transport and heating in buildings will cause enough CO2 emissions to push climate targets out of reach, according to a study co-authored and co-designed by the JRC.

Accelerated energy efficiency improvements and a widespread electrification of energy demand are needed.

Otherwise, the world will become increasingly dependent on carbon dioxide removal to hold warming to well below 2°C, and the 1.5°C target for this century is likely to be unachievable.

A team of scientists from across the world set out to identify bottlenecks towards achieving the internationally agreed Paris climate targets.

They found that even with very strong efforts by all countries, including early and substantial strengthening of the intended nationally determined contributions, residual carbon emissions will reach around 1000 gigatons of CO2 by the end of the century.

This goes considerably beyond the level that emissions must be limited to in order to achieve the 1.5°C target.

Carbon dioxide removal is therefore no longer a choice, but a necessity for limiting warming to 1.5°C.

None of the scenarios the scientists modelled were able to achieve this target without the availability of a negative emissions technology, such as bioenergy with carbon capture and storage technology.

The researchers also found that a failure to ramp up mitigation efforts now will increase the dependence on carbon dioxide removal as it locks in even more investments in infrastructures and leaves the world unprepared to make the changes needed to decarbonise.

The research has been published in Nature Climate Change.

Integrated Assessment Modelling

To assess options for emissions reduction, the scientists used 7 state-of-the-art modelling frameworks, which take into account temperature targets as well as the economic costs and technological options.

This included the JRC’s POLES global energy model. JRC scientists also contributed to the design of the research scenarios and the processing and interpretation of the results.

The study was conducted as part of the ADVANCE project, a central aim of which is to evaluate and improve the suitability of models for climate policy impact assessments.

The POLES model covers the entire energy balance, from final energy demand, transformation and power production to primary supply and trade of energy commodities across countries and regions.

It enables scientists to assess climate and energy policies, as well as future energy needs.

Related studies, recently co-authored by JRC scientists include:

The first multi-model analysis of mitigation efforts in the short term (to 2030) and their effectiveness in 2?°C and 1.5?°C climate stabilisation scenarios. The report confirms the importance of energy efficiency improvements and efforts for a zero carbon energy supply; An assessment published in Nature Energy which confirms that considerably up-scaled investment will be needed globally to realise the energy system transformation required to fulfil the Paris Agreement and achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.


These studies contribute to a growing body of scientific insights on the actions needed to achieve the Paris climate targets.

They strengthen the evidence behind climate initiatives which aim to strengthen global commitments to reaching these targets, including the major milestones to be reached by 2020 and the EU’s mid-century strategy for moving to a competitive low carbon economy by 2050, proposals for which are expected in November this year.

Following the 23rd Conference of the Parties (COP23) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), the Talanoa Dialogue for climate ambition, constructive, facilitative and solutions oriented approach was launched.

The studies also provide timely evidence ahead of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) special report on the impacts of global warming of 1.5 °C above pre-industrial levels and related global greenhouse gas emission pathways, which will serve as an input to the Dialogue.


Press link for more: Eureka Alert

Global warming may be twice what climate models predict #auspol #qldpol #ClimateChange #Divest @ElliottShayne CEO @ANZ_AU #NoNewCoal #StopAdani

Global warming may be twice what climate models predict

Past warming events suggest climate models fail to capture true warming under business-as-usual scenarios


Future global warming may eventually be twice as warm as projected by climate models under business-as-usual scenarios and even if the world meets the 2°C target sea levels may rise six metres or more, according to an international team of researchers from 17 countries.

The findings published last week in Nature Geoscience are based on observational evidence from three warm periods over the past 3.5 million years when the world was 0.5°C-2°C warmer than the pre-industrial temperatures of the 19th Century.

The research also revealed how large areas of the polar ice caps could collapse and significant changes to ecosystems could see the Sahara Desert become green and the edges of tropical forests turn into fire dominated savanna. “Observations of past warming periods suggest that a number of amplifying mechanisms, which are poorly represented in climate models, increase long-term warming beyond climate model projections,” said lead author, Prof Hubertus Fischer of the University of Bern.

“This suggests the carbon budget to avoid 2°C of global warming may be far smaller than estimated, leaving very little margin for error to meet the Paris targets.”

To get their results, the researchers looked at three of the best-documented warm periods, the Holocene thermal maximum (5000-9000 years ago), the last interglacial (129,000-116,000 years ago) and the mid-Pliocene warm period (3.3-3 million years ago).

The warming of the first two periods was caused by predictable changes in the Earth’s orbit, while the mid-Pliocene event was the result of atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations that were 350-450ppm – much the same as today.

Combining a wide range of measurements from ice cores, sediment layers, fossil records, dating using atomic isotopes and a host of other established paleoclimate methods, the researchers pieced together the impact of these climatic changes.

In combination, these periods give strong evidence of how a warmer Earth would appear once the climate had stabilized. By contrast, today our planet is warming much faster than any of these periods as human caused carbon dioxide emissions continue to grow. Even if our emissions stopped today, it would take centuries to millennia to reach equilibrium.

The changes to the Earth under these past conditions were profound – there were substantial retreats of the Antarctic and Greenland ice sheets and as a consequence sea-levels rose by at least six metres; marine plankton ranges shifted reorganising entire marine ecosystems; the Sahara became greener and forest species shifted 200 km towards the poles, as did tundra; high altitude species declined, temperate tropical forests were reduced and in Mediterranean areas fire-maintained vegetation dominated.

“Even with just 2°C of warming – and potentially just 1.5°C – significant impacts on the Earth system are profound,” said co-author Prof Alan Mix of Oregon State University.

“We can expect that sea-level rise could become unstoppable for millennia, impacting much of the world’s population, infrastructure and economic activity.”

Yet these significant observed changes are generally underestimated in climate model projections that focus on the near term. Compared to these past observations, climate models appear to underestimate long term warming and the amplification of warmth in Polar Regions.

“Climate models appear to be trustworthy for small changes, such as for low emission scenarios over short periods, say over the next few decades out to 2100. But as the change gets larger or more persistent, either because of higher emissions, for example a business-as-usual-scenario, or because we are interested in the long term response of a low emission scenario, it appears they underestimate climate change.,” said co-author Prof Katrin Meissner, Director of the University of New South Wales Climate Change Research Centre.

“This research is a powerful call to act. It tells us that if today’s leaders don’t urgently address our emissions, global warming will bring profound changes to our planet and way of life – not just for this century but well beyond.”


Press link for more: Eureka Alert

#ClimateChange Growing Threat to World Heritage @ElliottShayne CEO @ANZ_AU #NoNewCoal #StopAdani #auspol #qldpol

Climate Change is the Fastest Growing Threat to World Heritage

Adam Markham

Nineteen extraordinary places were added to UNESCO’s World Heritage list this week, including Buddhist temples in South Korea, the forests and wetlands that form the ancestral home of the Anishinaabeg people in Canada, and the ancient port city of Qalhat in Oman.

But amongst all the congratulations and good feeling that comes with adding sites to list of the world’s most important places, there was little or no serious talk about the implications of climate change.

Last year, the 21-nation World Heritage Committee, the Convention’s governing body, raised the alarm about climate change and called for stronger efforts to implement the Paris Agreement and increase resilience of World Heritage properties, promising to revise its own decade-old climate policy.

In Bahrain, however, the issue received short shrift, making it vital that the Committee make it a key agenda item at its next meeting in 2019.

Climate threats were not anticipated when the Convention was signed in 1972

Added to the World Heritage list in 2018, Pimachiowin Aki in Canada, part of the ancestral lands of the Anishinaabeg people. Photo: Bastian Bertzky/IUCN

Adopted at the General Council of UNESCO in 1972, the World Heritage Convention’s core mission is to protect and conserve the World’s most important natural and cultural heritage.

Back in 1972, there was no hint that climate change would become the systemic threat to World Heritage sites that it has since proved.

To be inscribed on the World Heritage List, a protected area must demonstrate Outstanding Universal Value (OUV) under at least one of ten criteria.

For example, in the US, the Statue of Liberty is listed under two criteria, as a “masterpiece of the human spirit” and as a “symbol of ideals such as liberty, peace, human rights…”.

Yellowstone National Park is listed under four criteria, including for its scenic splendor, unparalleled geothermal activity, intact large landscape and role as a refuge for wildlife.

If a site should come under threat from, for example, mining, deforestation or urban development, it can be added to the List of World Heritage in Danger, with the possibility of being de-listed if the problems are not addressed.

This year, Kenya’s Lake Turkana was added to the Danger List, because of an immediate threat from upstream development of the Gibe III Dam in Ethiopia.

Climate change is a major threat to the OUV to many World Heritage properties, but the Danger List does not seem an appropriate tool for addressing the issue, as no one state party can address the threat on its own.

Neither does the nomination process for new World Heritage sites require any assessment of whether the OUV may be degraded as a result of climate change.

It seems absurd that site nomination dossiers which are extremely detailed, take years to complete and require the inclusion of comprehensive management strategies, have no obligation to include even the most basic assessment of climate vulnerability.

Consequently, UCS is working with partners to try and identify ways to better respond to climate risks within the World Heritage system.

Climate change is the fastest growing threat to World Heritage

At a workshop in Bahrain last week, we asked a group of natural and cultural World Heritage site managers from around the globe whether they were experiencing climate impacts at the site where they work, 21 of 22 said yes, and 16 of the 22 described actions they are taking to monitor or respond to climate change  And that makes sense, because we know from the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change), and a host of country and site-level studies that the impacts of climate change are everywhere.

But it also drives home the point that this issue is not getting as much attention as it needs at the higher levels of the Convention.

Climate impacts are clearly being under-reported by states parties under the official mechanisms of the Convention – the State of Conservation (SOC) reports, and IUCN’s World Heritage Outlook 2 report, published in 2017, identified climate change as the biggest potential threat to natural world heritage and estimated that one in four sites is already being impacted.

This also must be an underestimate. In fact, virtually all properties must be being impacted in some way, the key question is how severe the threat to OUV is for each site, and over what time-scale?

UCS, with UNESCO and the United National Environment Program (UNEP) has published 31 representative case studies of World Heritage properties being impacted by climate change, including Yellowstone National Park and the Galapagos Islands. In Bahrain, we heard many new stories about how climate change is affecting World Heritage properties, including for example the immediate risk of flooding and erosion to the Islands of Gorée and Saint-Louis in Senegal, vulnerability to changes in rainfall patterns at Petra in Jordan, and the potential loss of cave paintings & petroglyphs in Tasmania.

The historic city of George Town in Penang, Malaysia suffered unprecedented damage from a typhoon in 2017, the kind of extreme storm that the area has not normally had to face in the past.

Map showing highest level of heat stress for the 29 World Heritage reefs during the third global coral bleaching event, Image: NOAA Coral Reef Watch/UNESCO

Although there was a 2014 independent analysis of long-term sea level vulnerability to cultural World Heritage sites that identified 136 out of 700 , the only group of World Heritage properties for which a comprehensive scientific assessment of climate risk has been undertaken, are the coral reefs.

There are 29 World Heritage reefs, including Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, the Belize Barrier Reef, and Papahānaumokuākea in the Hawaiian archipelago.

According to UNESCO’s 2017 analysis (for Scott Heron and Mark Eakin, both of NOAA, were coordinating lead authors, along with Fanny Douvere from the World Heritage Centre), coral in 21 out of the 29 properties (79%) have experienced severe or repeated heat stress during the past three years.

Projecting impacts into the future, under the IPCC’s RCP 8.5 scenario, with a global average temperature of 4.3C by 2100, twice-per-decade severe bleaching would be apparent at 25 of the World Heritage Reefs by 2040.

Why we need a Climate Vulnerability Index for World Heritage

What is needed is a simple, standardized methodology for top-line rapid assessment of climate vulnerability that would work for all World Heritage sites, whether listed for natural, cultural or mixed values.

Such a tool would enable the World Heritage Committee to determine which World Heritage properties are most immediately at risk from climate change, where the problems will likely be in the future, and where resources are most urgently needed for more detailed assessment and monitoring, and to undertake resilience and adaptation activities.

The methodology needs to be repeatable so that periodic reviews can be undertaken.

Island of Saint-Louis, Sénégal – a World Heritage site at immediate threat from sea level rise. Photo: Dominique Roger/UNESCO

To meet this need, a Climate Vulnerability Index (CVI) for World Heritage properties has been proposed.

If adopted by the World Heritage Committee, it has the potential to influence responses to climate change at the World’s most important natural & cultural heritage sites. The concept emerged at an expert meeting on the Baltic island of Vilm, Germany, in 2017, which UCS participated in, and was proposed in the meeting outcome document.

The meeting which was called in response to a decision at the World Heritage Committee in Krakow earlier in 2017 to prioritize climate action and resilience, to investigate the implications for the OUV of World Heritage sites, and revise the Convention’s decade-old climate policy.

At the Bahrain meeting of the World Heritage Committee, the CVI concept was presented at a side event organized by two of the Committee’s three official advisory bodies (IUCN and ICOMOS (the International Council on Monuments and Sites)) in which UCS participated, and at a meeting of the ICOMOS Climate Change & Heritage Working Group co-organized by UCS at the National Museum of Bahrain. The CVI idea is gaining traction. Its value to the Committee would be that it could help quickly identify thematic groups of properties – such as Arctic sites, coastal archaeology, or high mountain ecosystems – at risk, then provide for a deeper dive into all sites within a threatened category, flagging individual sites in need of urgent action or further assessment at the national level.

Critical for the success of the CVI is that it can be applied to both natural and cultural sites, so that a methodology that works for coral reefs, can also work for earthen architecture or cave paintings.

Outside of the side events and the workshops of the advisory bodies and NGOs, where it was a bigger topic than ever before, climate change was hardly mentioned in the plenary sessions of the World Heritage Committee.

Only Committee members Trinidad & Tobago and Australia substantively raised the issue, the latter offering an amendment to the Bahrain decision document which was adopted without objection, and which requires the revised climate policy to be presented at the 43rd Committee meeting in Azerbaijan in 2019.

Now there is a window of opportunity for civil society to influence the policy revision, and for the vulnerability index concept to move forward.

It’s an opportunity that, if taken, could influence how the World Heritage Convention deals with climate change for decades to come.

Press link for more: Union of concerned scientists

Rhode Island files lawsuit against fossil fuel companies. #auspol #qldpol #StopAdani #Divest @ElliottShayne CEO @ANZ_AU #ClimateChange

Rhode Island Attorney General Kilmartin Files Lawsuit Against Fossil Fuel Companies for Costs and Consequences of Climate Change

The “Ocean State” Becomes First State to Challenge Big Oil in Court for Knowingly Putting Rhode Island Infrastructure, Businesses, Families, and Ecosystems in Jeopardy

PROVIDENCE, RI – Faced with growing effects of climate change and the costs related to protecting the State, Rhode Island Attorney General Peter F. Kilmartin filed a complaint today in Providence County Superior Court suing the world’s largest fossil fuel companies for knowingly contributing to climate change and the catastrophic consequences to the State and its residents, economy, eco-system, and infrastructure.

Peter F. Kilmartin

Rhode Island, known as the Ocean State, boasts more than 400 miles of shoreline, historic communities, robust marine and fishing industry, and a long commitment to policies to protect and preserve the State’s vast natural resources and environment.

“Rhode Island is especially vulnerable to the effects of climate changes that is now on our doorstep with sea level rise and an increase in severe weather patterns, as seen by the extensive damage caused by storms in the past several years, including Super Storm Sandy and the floods of 2010,” said Rhode Island Attorney General Peter F. Kilmartin. “The defendants’ actions for the past several decades are already having and will continue to have a significant and detrimental impact on our infrastructure, economy, public health, and our eco-systems, and will force the State to divert already-limited resources to mitigate the effects of climate change, thereby diminishing resources for other vital programs and services.”

“For a very long time, there has been this perception that ‘Big Oil’ was too big to take on, but here we are – the smallest state – taking on some of the biggest corporate polluters in the world,” he added. “The defendants have contributed greatly to the increased costs associated with climate change, and as such, should be held legally responsible for those damages.”

Naming 21 defendants, including ExxonMobil, BP, and Shell, the lawsuit seeks to hold the defendants accountable for damages associated with both sea rise level and changes to the water cycle above and below the ocean’s surface, known as the hydrologic cycle, caused by greenhouse gas pollution from these companies’ products. Rhode Island is the first state to file such a lawsuit against the defendants.

The State alleges in the complaint that the defendants:

• Created, contributed to, and assisted in creating conditions in the State of Rhode Island that constitute a public nuisance;

• Failed to adequately warn customers, consumers, regulators, and the general public of the known and foreseeable risks posed by their products, and the consequences that inevitably follow from their use;

• Refuted the scientific knowledge generally accepted at the time, advanced pseudo-scientific theories of their own, and developed public messaging that prevented reasonable consumers from forming an expectation that fossil fuel products would cause grave climate changes;

• Failed in their duty to prevent reasonably foreseeable harm that could result from the ordinary use of their products;

• Caused the sea level rise that has encroached upon the land;

• Interfered with the use and enjoyment of public trust resources within Rhode Island; and

• Violated the State’s Environmental Rights Act by polluting, impairing, and destroying natural resources of the State.

Greenhouse gas pollution from fossil fuel companies is warming the oceans and atmosphere, causing sea levels to rise, and increasing the frequency and severity of heat waves, droughts, extreme precipitation events and severe storms.

Climate change impacts as a result of the defendants’ actions have already cost the State of Rhode Island taxpayers significantly for the repair and maintenance of roads, bridges, and other infrastructure projects, mitigation and remediation of the State’s shoreline, and wetlands, and the rebuilding of coastal structures, among other costs, and will continue to do so as the effects from climate change continue.

“We have 400 miles of coastline in Rhode Island. Rhode Island is more vulnerable to the effects of climate change than nearly any other state. The climate is changing and we need to take action now for the long term. In recent years, Rhode Island has made great strides and we’re standing up together against the Trump Administration’s actions that threaten our ocean, our Bay, our forests and our open space. We’re home to the nation’s first off-shore wind farm and since 2014, we’ve added more than 5,000 green jobs to our economy,” said Governor Raimondo. “As we face the threat of climate change, we need to build more resilient infrastructure and we need to hold the people and companies most responsible for climate change accountable. Working families shouldn’t have to pay for the willful ignorance of big oil, big gas and big coal companies. I applaud Attorney General Kilmartin for taking action against oil companies. My team has worked closely with his from the start, and I pledge to offer any and all assistance necessary to make those responsible for climate change pay.”

“The Ocean State has so much at stake in the fight against climate change,” said U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse. “I commend Attorney General Kilmartin for his leadership in holding some of the world’s most powerful corporations responsible for the damage they’re inflicting on our coastal economy, infrastructure, and way of life.”

“Rhode Islanders have had a front row seat to the effects of a changing climate for years, effects that are only becoming more pronounced,” said U.S. Congressman James Langevin, the Energy Task Force Chair of the House Sustainable Energy and Environment Coalition. “Rising sea levels, increased storm strength and warmer temperatures threaten our way of life in the Ocean State. I commend Attorney General Kilmartin for this bold action to hold fossil fuel companies accountable for their contributions to this crisis.”

“Climate change presents one of the greatest challenges facing our country and the entire world. If President Trump will not meet this challenge head on, it’s critical that states and cities fill the void,” said U.S. Congressman David Cicilline. “Rhode Island has always stood at the forefront of protecting our planet’s beautiful natural resources. I’m proud that today we are once again leading our country forward on this issue.”

The complaint asserts significant to severe impacts to Rhode Island as a direct result of the defendants’ action, including:

Sea level rise, changes to the hydrologic cycle, and increased air and ocean temperatures resulting from anthropogenic climate change have and will result in injury to public, industrial, commercial, and residential assets within the State either directly, or through secondary and tertiary impacts that cause the State to expend resources in resiliency planning, responding to these impacts, and repairing infrastructure damage; lost revenue due to decreased economic activity in the State; injury to natural resources which the State holds in trust for the use and enjoyment of the people of Rhode Island; and cause the State to suffer other injuries.

Among the assets and natural resources in the State that have and/or will be injured as a result of climate change are:

Roads, bridges and other transportation infrastructure: According to recent analysis, 175 miles of roadway will be exposed with seven feet of sea level rise. In a storm surge event with seven feet of sea level rise, 573 miles of roadway will be exposed. In addition, 90 bridges across the state are vulnerable to seven feet of sea level rise and 163 bridges are vulnerable in a storm surge event plus seven feet of sea level rise. Rising temperatures and extreme weather also contribute to the degradation of roads and bridges, thereby increasing repair and maintenance costs.

Energy Infrastructure: One of the most direct energy security impacts of major storm events is power outages. Power outages result in direct costs to repair damaged or flooded infrastructure or downed poles and wires and to restore service and indirect costs such as lost business and tax revenue and health impacts from loss of electricity and air conditioning. Increased extreme heat days also put stress on the state’s electricity grid, by requiring increased air conditioning. State agencies are playing key roles in overseeing energy assurance and resiliency in the state.

Ports: Maritime transportation, including the Port of Providence and Port of Galilee, serves a critical role in the Rhode Island economy, providing products, raw materials, and revenue from scrap metal and other exports. Numerous ancillary businesses depend on the ports’ functionality. The Port of Providence alone generated more than $200 million in economic benefits for the region and over 2,400 jobs. The commercial fishing industry generates around $200 million in annual sales and supports about 7,000 jobs. Impacts of climate change, including flooding from a major storm and associated damage and closure of fisheries and loss of profitable aquatic species, have and will cause both short and long-term disruptions in the state economy causing the state to lose revenue

Dams: The state has 668 dams, 96 of which are classified as “high hazard,” meaning that failure or mis-operation may result in loss of human life, and 81 of which are classified as “significant hazard,” meaning failure can cause major economic loss, disrupt critical facilities or infrastructure, or detriment public’s health, safety or welfare

Beaches: Climate change has and will subject beaches to increased storm surge, erosion, coastal flooding and sea level rise. The State owns several beaches open for public use and enjoyment. Because bacteria grows more quickly in warm water, warming ocean temperatures will result in increased beach closures. As a result of climate change the State will lose real property to inundation and flooding and revenue from decreased tourism and use of state beaches.

Water Supply Sea level rise and increased summer and fall droughts will stress Rhode Island’s water supply. As decreased seasonal precipitation increases reliance on and diminishes replenishment of groundwater, sea level rise will result in saltwater intruding into coastal groundwater and wells, contaminating drinking water resources

Wastewater Management: The State is home to nineteen major wastewater treatment facilities and over 250 pumping stations to transport sewage to these systems. Most of these wastewater systems are located in floodplains to take advantage of gravity fed flows. Sea level rise, and increased flooding and storms associated with climate change will exceed infrastructure capacity, overwhelming and submerging infrastructure, including pipelines, wastewater pumping stations and treatment systems

Coastal Communities A study evaluating the State’s 21 coastal communities found that with 3 feet of sea level rise, over 300 homes will be in the inundation zone. With 7 feet of sea level rise, over 4,000 occupied residential units and 800 commercial units would be within the inundation zone

The State also alleges that the defendants have known for decades that business-as-usual combustion of their products could be “severe” or even “catastrophic,” according to Exxon’s own internal memos. Some of the defendants were in fact so certain of the threat that some even took steps to protect their own assets from rising seas and more extreme storms, and they developed new technologies to profit from drilling in a soon-to-be ice-free Arctic. Yet instead of taking steps to reduce the threat to others, the industry actually increased production while spending billions on public relations, lobbying, and campaign contributions that have led to the consequences today in Rhode Island.

According to the complaint:

Defendants have known for nearly 50 years that greenhouse gas pollution from their fossil fuel products has a significant impact on the Earth’s climate and sea levels….Instead of working to reduce the use and combustion of fossil fuel products, lower the rate of greenhouse gas emissions, minimize the damage associated with continued high use and combustion of such products, and ease the transition to a lower carbon economy, Defendants concealed the dangers, sought to undermine public support for greenhouse gas regulation, and engaged in massive campaigns to promote the ever-increasing use of their products at ever greater volumes.

Press link for more: Rhode Island Government press release

Greenhouse gases were main driver of #climatechange in the deep past #auspol #qldpol #StopAdani #NoNewCoal @ElliottShayne CEO @ANZ_AU

Greenhouse gases were the main driver of climate change in the deep past

July 2, 2018

Purdue University

Greenhouse gases were the main driver of climate throughout the warmest period of the past 66 million years, providing insight into the drivers behind long-term climate change.

Antarctica and Australia separated around the end of the Eocene (56 to 22.9 million years ago), creating a deep water passage between them and changing ocean circulation patterns.

Some researchers believe these changes were the driver of cooling temperatures near the end of the Eocene ‘hothouse’ period, but some think declining levels of carbon dioxide were to blame.

If the cooling had been caused by changes in ocean circulation, regions around the equator would have warmed as the polar regions cooled, shifting the distribution of heat on Earth. But changing the concentration of greenhouse gases would affect the total heat trapped in Earth’s atmosphere, causing cooling everywhere (including in the tropics), which is what the researchers found.

The findings were published in the journal Nature.

The synchronized evolution of tropical and polar temperature we reconstructed can only be explained by greenhouse gas forcing,” said Margot Cramwinckel, a Ph.D. candidate at Utrecht University in the Netherlands and first author of the paper. “Our findings are uniquely compatible with the hypothesis that the long-term Eocene cooling was driven by greenhouse gasses. This greatly improves our understanding of the drivers behind long-term climate change, which is important in order to predict the development of future climate change.”

Climate change often has more intense effects near the poles than elsewhere on the planet, a phenomenon known as polar amplification.

The study found that temperature change was more dramatic near the poles than in the tropics during the Eocene, even though most of the period was extremely warm, leaving little to no ice near the poles.

“Even in a largely ice-free world, the poles cooled more than the tropics as temperature dropped,” Cramwinckel said. “This indicates that greenhouse gas forcing by itself can cause polar amplification.”

The researchers had one more question about polar amplification: does it reach some sort of limit?

“Our results support the idea that polar amplification saturates out at some point in warm climates and does not continue to increase with further warming,” said Matthew Huber, a professor of earth, atmospheric and planetary sciences at Purdue University and co-author of the paper.

As a proxy for temperature, the research team looked at membrane lipids of simple, sea-surface dwelling organisms called Thaumarchaeota that change their membrane composition as temperatures change in deep sea sediment cores drilled near the Ivory Coast.

They combined these observations with climate models, produced by Huber’s team at Purdue, to mesh together a timeline of temperature throughout the Eocene.

“The simulations took about four years of continuous computing to achieve equilibrated climate states at various carbon dioxide levels,” Huber said. “For the first time, the climate model is capable of capturing the main trends in tropical sea surface temperatures and temperature gradients across a range of climate encompassing nearly 20 million years. The only problem is that the simulations required more carbon dioxide changes than observed, which demonstrates that this model is not sensitive enough to carbon dioxide.”

Historically, researchers have had trouble reproducing temperature gradients between the tropics and the poles throughout the Eocene. These new climate models are capable of overcoming most of the issues faced by past models.

Press link for more:

Is #ClimateChange an existential threat? #auspol #qldpol #NoNewCoal #StopAdani

Do you think climate change is an existential threat?

PAUL JAY: 97 percent of the scientists say so. And in this world one can’t directly investigate everything oneself.

You know, I take medicine. I don’t go and do my own pharmacology.

If I fly on an airplane I don’t, I can’t tell you anything about the fundamentals of aeronautics.

We live in a world where you kind of learn to judge information. And over a period of time, when almost every climate scientist on earth says the science is definitive or definitive within 5 percent of error, that’s enough for me. And you know, if they turn out to be wrong, great.

I’d be more than happy.

We’re not heading towards the apocalypse.

But that’s not how we operate in this world.

None of us do.

We live in a world where we rely on scientific knowledge, whether we’re scientists or not. And when you’ve got every climate scientist saying the situation is urgent and dire, you’ve got to believe it. And especially when you look at the economic interest behind the scientists.

Sometimes scientists say such and such medicine’s good for you, and you find out the study was financed by the pharmaceutical company. Makes the information less persuasive.

For decades, climate scientists were operating in an environment where they were being completely bombarded with counter climate scientists funded by fossil fuel companies. There may be some money for climate science now, but that wasn’t the case for most of the time that the science was being developed. And quite the contrary, scientists were sometimes personally vilified by the Koch brothers. They tried to get scientists fired from universities. They abused them personally.

A lot of the climate science was developed in a very courageous way against very difficult conditions. That, to me, makes that science more persuasive. And even now, you know, it may be the majority of politicians in D.C. don’t believe in climate science. Although, frankly, I think they do believe it. They just don’t want to say it. They all have their own escape plans ready, just in case. But it’s in their interest politically to promote ignorance.

So I’m not a scientist. I can’t answer the scientific question. I mean, I have a basic knowledge, but it’s not up to me to answer the basic question about the urgency. But I know how to judge information. And the way I judge it, you know, it’s persuasive enough to say we better get urgent about this.

Press link for more: The Real News