Global warming

We’ve come to accept that if nature can yield something of value to the lucrative engines of commerce, then we should grab it and rip it out, never thinking twice about the wounds left behind. According to this way of thinking, if exploitation results in injury to the environment, so be it: nature will always heal itself. But the magnitude of environmental destruction is now on a scale few ever foresaw; the wounds no longer simply heal themselves. We have to act affirmatively to stop the harm. Source: An Inconvenient Truth, by AY Gore, p. 161 May 26, 2006 An Inconvenient Truth, by AY Gore: on Energy & Oil

Skeptics point to historical warming–but today is hotter The correlation between temperate and CO concentrations over the last 1,000 years-?as measured in the ice core record by Thompson team-?is striking. Nevertheless, the so-called global warming skeptics often say that global warming is really an illusion reflecting nature’s cyclical fluctuations. To support their view, they frequently refer to the Medieval Warm Period. But as [the historical] thermometer shows, the vaunted Medieval Warm Period was tiny compared to the enormous increases in temperature of the last half- entry.

In any given year, it might seem as if the average global temperature is going down, but the overall trend is very clear. And in recent years, the rate of increase has been accelerating. In fact, if you look at the 21 hottest years measured, 20 of the last 21 occurred within the last 25 years. The hottest year on record during this entire period was 2005. Source: An Inconvenient Truth, by AY Gore, p. 64&72-73 May 26, 2006 Ocean warming causes stronger hurricanes, like Strain Scientists have been using evermore accurate computer models that long ago redirected a much higher range of ocean temperatures as a result of man- made global warming.

The actual ocean temperatures are completely consistent with what has been predicted, and they’re way above the range of natural variability. As the oceans get warmer, storms get stronger. In 2004, Florida was hit by 4 unusually powerful hurricanes. That same year, Japan set an all-time record for typhoons. The previous record was 7. In 2004, 10 typhoons hit Japan. The emerging consensus links global warming to increasingly destructive power of hurricanes, increasing the strength of the average hurricane a full Alfa-step on the well-known 5-step scale. As water temperatures go up, wind velocity goes up.

One major study came out less than a month before Hurricane Strain hit. When Strain first hit, it was Only a category 1 Storm. Then, it passed over the unusually warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico [and became category 5]. Source: An Inconvenient Truth, by AY Gore, p. 78-94 May 26, 2006 Global warming causes more floods & also more droughts There has been record flooding in China, which, as one of the planet’s oldest civilizations, keeps the best flood records of any nation in the world. Recently, for example, there were huge floods in Chuan and Sandhog provinces.

Paradoxically, however, global warming also causes not only more flooding, but also more drought. The nearby Annum province was continuing to suffer a severe drought at the same time the neighboring areas were flooding. One of the reasons for this paradox has to do with the fact that global warming not only increases precipitation worldwide but at the same time causes some of it to relocate. A second reason for the paradoxical effect of global warming is that while it produces more evaporation from the oceans to fill the warmer atmosphere tit increased moisture, it also sucks more moisture out of the soil.

Partly as a consequence, desertification has been increasing in the world decade by decade. Source: An Inconvenient Truth, by AY Gore, p. 1 12&1 18 May 26, 2006 Supported ethanol in asses & celluloses ethanol now When was in Congress we used to wrangle about the value of making ethanol from corn. Despite the moonshine jokes, I supported ethanol. Even though some of its environmental consequences made me uncomfortable, I thought it was important for us to work on alternatives to fossil fuels to begin to break our dependence on foreign oil.

Since then, newer innovations have [come along]: one company has figured out a way to make a new kind of ethanol out of plant fiber–cheaper & cleaner than regular ethanol. Source: An Inconvenient Truth, by AY Gore, p. 137 May 26, 2006 Arctic ice is melting & may disrupt global weather patterns Since the asses, the extent & thickness of the Artic ice cap has diminished precipitously. There are now studies showing that if we continue with business as usual, the Artic ice cap will completely disappear each year during summertime.

At present, it plays a crucial role in cooling the Earth. Preventing TTS disappearance must be one of our priorities. The melting of the ice cap represents bad news for creatures like polar bears. A new study shows that for the first time, polar bears have been drowning in significant numbers. What does it mean to look at a vast expanse of water that used to be ice? We ought to care about this because it has serious planetary effects. An increase of 5 degrees actually means an increase of only 1 or 2 degrees at the Equator, but more than 12 degrees at the North Pole.

And so all those wind and ocean patterns that formed during the last ice age, are now up in the air. Our civilization has never experienced any environmental shift remotely similar to this. Source: An Inconvenient Truth, by AY Gore, p. 143-149 May 26, 2006 Carbon exchange market can cap-and-trade CO like we did ASS When acid rain was falling on parts of the US back in the 1 sass, an innovative program helped to clean up the polluted precipitation. With bipartisan support, Congress put in place a system for buying and selling emissions of sulfur dioxide (ASS), the main culprit behind acid rain.

Called a cap-and-trade system, it used the power of market forces to help drastically reduce ASS missions, while allowing pioneering companies to profit from environmental stewardship. A similar approach can speed up the reduction of CO emissions. The European Union has adopted this US innovation and is making it work effectively. Here at home, while Congress has not yet passed a federal cap- and-trade system for CO emissions, there is an effective private-sector carbon market that is already up and running-?the Chicago Climate Exchange (ICC).

The ICC is leading the way toward a future in which reducing CO could bring not only environmental rewards, but financial ones too. Source: An Inconvenient Truth, by AY Gore, p. 252 May 26, 2006 Consensus on global warming, but newspapers fabricate doubt Politicians often confuse self-interested arguments paid for by lobbyists & planted in the popular press with legitimate peer-reviewed studies published in reputable scientific journals.

For example, the global warming skeptics cite one article more than any other in arguing that global warming is just a myth: a statement of concern during the 1 sass that the world might be in danger of entering a new ice age. But that article was published in Newsweek and never appeared in a peer-reviewed journal. There is a misconception that the scientific community is in a state of disagreement about global warming. In fact, there is virtually no serious disagreement On the central points. The misconception of disagreement is actually an illusion that has been deliberately fostered by oil & coal companies.

These companies want to prevent any new policies that would interfere with their current business plans that rely on the massive unrestrained dumping of CO into the Earth atmosphere every day. Source: An Inconvenient Truth, by AY Gore, p. 260-3 May 26, 2006 Current tech can reduce CO emissions to 1 970 levels Together, these changes, all of which are based on already-existing, affordable technologies, can bring emissions down to a point below 1 9705 levels. Reduction from more efficient use of electricity in heating and cooling systems, lighting, appliances and electronic equipment.

Reduction from end-use efficiency, meaning we design buildings and businesses to use far less energy. Reduction from increased vehicle efficiency by manufacturing cars that run on less gas and putting more hybrid and fuel-cell cars on the roads. Reduction from making other changes in transport efficiency, such s designing better mass transit systems. Reduction from increased reliance on renewable energy technologies that already exist. Reduction from the capture and storage of excess carbon from power plants and industrial activities. Source: An Inconvenient Truth, by AY Gore, p. 81 May 26, 2006 Dealing with global warming inconvenient for rich & powerful As for why so many people still resist what the facts clearly show, I think, in part, the reason is that the truth about the climate crisis is an inconvenient one that means we are going to have to change the way we live our lives. The truth about global warming is especially inconvenient and unwelcome to some powerful people and companies making enormous sums of money from activities they know full well will have to change in order to ensure the planet’s livability.

These people-?especially those at a few multinational companies with the most at stake–have been spending many millions of dollars every year in figuring out ways of sowing public confusion about global warming. Source: An Inconvenient Truth, by AY Gore, p. 284 May 26, 2006 We solved ozone crisis; can solve CO crisis by same methods Once upon a mime, your refrigerator could kill you. Early models used toxic and explosive gases top keep food cold. In 1927, chlorofluorocarbons (CIFS) replaced those gases.

But in 1974, scientists theorized that as CIFS rose into the upper atmosphere, their molecules would be broken down by the sun, releasing chlorine into the ozone layer and setting in motion a dangerous chain reaction. Ozone protects us from the sun’s damaging rays. Chlorine would eat away at this fragile protective skin, allowing the sun’s ultraviolet rays to stream unimpeded through the atmosphere, thereby causing skin cancer and other problems. In 1 987, 27 nations signed the Montreal Protocol, the first global environmental agreement to regulate CIFS.

At last count there were 183 signatories, and the levels of CIFS have stabilized or declined. Today, as the CO crisis unites us, we must remember the lesson of the CUFF battle: that cool heads can prevail and alter the course of environmental change for the better. Source: An Inconvenient Truth, by AY Gore, p. 295 May 26, 2006 Steadily increase energy from clean, renewable sources Governor Douglas and his team have been hard at work planning Vermont’ energy future and steadily increasing the amount of power reduced here in Vermont by clean, renewable sources.

Governor Douglas is a leader in the effort to reduce greenhouse gases and halt global warning. He was the first governor to agree to a new Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, a cooperative effort by Northeastern and Mid-Titanic states to reduce carbon dioxide emissions. Source: Rutland Herald pop-deed, “The real inconvenient truth” July 28, 2006 An Inconvenient Truth, by AY Gore: on Environment Humans can impact earth’s ecology; especially the atmosphere Many people today assume mistakenly that the Earth is so big that we humans cannot sibyl have any major impact on the way our planet’s ecological system operates.

That may have been true at one time, but it is not the case any more. We have grown so numerous and our technologies have become so powerful that we are now capable of having a significant influence on many parts of the Earth’s environment. The must vulnerable part of the Earth’s ecological system is the atmosphere. It is vulnerable because it is so thin. Indeed, the Earth’s atmosphere is so think that we have the capacity to dramatically alter the concentration of some o fit basic molecular components. In particular, we have vastly increased the amount of carbon dioxide–the most important of the so-called greenhouse gases.

Source: An Inconvenient Truth, by AY Gore, p. 22-25 May 26, 2006 To let earth continue warming would be deeply immoral In Antarctica, measurements of CO concentrations and temperatures go back 650,000 years. At no point in the last 650,000 years before the pre- industrial era did the CO concentration go above 300 parts per million (pimp). Where CO is now–350 pimp–is way above anything measured in the prior 650,000-year record. There is not a single part of this 650,000-year record-?no fact, date, or umber–that is controversial in any way or in dispute by anybody.

To the extent that there is a controversy at all, it is that a few people in some of the less responsible coal, oil, and utility companies say, “So what? That’s not going to cause any problem. ” [Does temperature follow CO levels? ] It’s a complicated relationship, but when there is more CO in the atmosphere, the temperature increases because more heat from the Sun is trapped. But if we allow this to happen, it would be deeply and unforgivably immoral. It would condemn coming generations to a catastrophically diminished future. Source: An Inconvenient Truth, by AY Gore, p. 7 May 26, 2006 Use market capitalism as ally of environmentalism One of the keys to solving the climate crisis involves finding ways to use the powerful force of market capitalism as an ally. And more than anything else, that requires accurate measurements of the real consequences-?positive and negative–of all the important economic choices we make. The environmental impact of our economic choices has often been ignored because traditional business accounting has allowed these factors to be labeled “externalities” and routinely excluded from the balance sheet. Urge: An Inconvenient Truth, by AY Gore, p. 270 May 26, 2006 An Inconvenient Truth, by AY Gore: on Foreign Policy Drought from global warming set stage for Darker genocide Unbelievable tragedies have been unfolding in the part of Africa near Lake Chad, where genocidal murders have become commonplace in the region of Darker. The region-wide drought has contributed to the famine conditions that put millions at risk. A little discussed contributing factor to the famine and genocide is the disappearance of Lake Chad.

Just 40 years ago Lake Chad was as large as Lake Erie–formerly the 6th largest lake in the world. But now due to declining rainfall and ever- intensifying human use, it has shrunk to 1/20th of its original size. The lake’s dissipation has led to collapsing fisheries and crops. While Lake Chad withered, intense drought set the stage for the violence that erupted in neighboring Darker, a war-torn region of Sudan. The more we understand about climate change, the more it looks as if we may be the real culprit–the US emits 1/4 of the world’s greenhouse gases.

We helped manufacture the suffering in Africa, and we have a moral obligation to try to fix it. Source: An Inconvenient Truth, by AY Gore, p. 1 16-7 May 26, 2006 An Inconvenient Truth, by AY Gore: on Homeland Security Real danger to WET is not terrorism, but rising sea levels In Manhattan, the World Trade Center Memorial is intended to be, among other things, an expression of the determination of the United States never to allow such harm to befall our country again. But if sea levels rose 20 feet worldwide, the site of the World Trade Center Memorial would be underwater.

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