Saturday, July 16, 2005

Philip Stott's review of the G8 Conference

A quick entry as I'm away from computers. Access this article by biogeographer Philip Stott that is a good synopsis of the sea change created at Gleneagles. Science overcame Myth, Progress overcame Ascetics.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

I'm optimistic about the G8 Meeting on Climate Change!

Well, I hope I am right to think that the US stand on global warming (i.e. anti-Kyoto Protocol) is starting to get through to everyone else. We'll see the final outcome but this report from the BBC is certainly promising.

Monday, July 04, 2005

Global Warming is a religion!

As the rhetoric before the G8 meeting warms the planet up, the BBC reports that the UK government is still positive about an "outcome" to the talks on global warming. But the best "soundbite" of the day goes to UK Environment Secretary, Margaret Beckett, who is quoted as saying "the summit's aim is to secure a general agreement rather than concentrating on an "exact theology" of climate change issues".

What is an "exact theology"?

Beckett is an important and loyal member of the Labour Party, having trade union links and at one time voting as a left wing hard liner. More recently she has moved toward the center. She trained as a metallurgist but has spent most of her adult life in politics.

Independence Day

A report by the BBC on President Bush's interview with Trevor Macdonald on ITV suggests that the USA is not going to make any deals on the Kyoto Protocol at the G8 Meeting. This is good and what is more, the Prez's reasoning appears to be an honest reflection of Washington's position on the subject. I do worry, however, that Bush also stated that the USA sees global warming as a "significant long term issue". Of course, when you know you only have 3-1/2 years to go as leader, you can make these statements to soften the rhetoric, but even so it does suggest a chink in their logical armor - a chink that can be exploited.

Technology is indeed the way of the future, whether it be to combat global warming or not. The US position is therefore the correct one given that scientists really can't predict much about the long term impact of what may be a slight warming cycle. So full marks to Washington for insisting that Kyoto was a poorly thought out construction that has the potential to do a lot more harm than good.

Alternative energy sources make a lot of sense and we do need to expand our technological base for providing clean energy (regardless of global warming). Ultimately we will need oil as a feedstock for plastics rather than for energy, so it make sense to start looking for alternatives right now.

Sunday, July 03, 2005

ID Cards and Global Warming

This post has little to do with global warming (man-made or not) but is here for its relevance as an unusual example of a liberal newspaper actually being liberal. The subject is ID cards and the argument is that "the innocent have plenty to hide" if we are to retain the concept of freedom. Compelling reading for all those who think ID cards are a harmless intervention into our collective privacy.

So where's the connection? Well, its the same government that wants to foist ID cards on us that also tells us that we must spend our money (for the government's money is not theirs to spend, it came from us, the taxpayer) to save the planet from a terrible end. Just like the ID card proposals, it is clear that the government does not understand the underpinnings of its proposed actions toward "solving" global warming.

If the Guardian can see through the ID card rhetoric, perhaps they can also see through the political science of global warming. After all, the Washington Post has!

Saturday, July 02, 2005

On Carbon Credits

Here we go again with the UK government stating there is "increasingly clear evidence that climate change is happening more quickly than expected (which) has made it necessary to "think the unthinkable". As a result, we can now expect the introduction of energy ration cards and the capability of trading carbon points. Please, UK Government, desist from scaremongering, or at least tell us how you know that climate change is happening more quickly than expected! Just how fast did we expect climate to change before we discovered a faster rate!!! This is sheer baloney being foisted on a population who are more and more inclined to believe what the non-scientists tell them about science.

As for carbon rationing, this is clearly a pre-G8 ploy to demonstrate that the UK is going to do something about complying with the Kyoto Protocol in the future. It's always easier to talk about what you're going to do than defend what you haven't been able to do!