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The Sound of Climate Silence: Romney and Obama Spar Over Who Wants to To Drill for More Fossil Fuels During Debate
Stephen Lacey, ThinkProgress
“The door is closing. I am very worried – if we don’t change direction now on how we use energy, we will end up beyond what scientists tell us is the minimum [for climate safety]. The door will be closed forever.”
No, that was not President Barack Obama or his Republican Challenger Mitt Romney speaking in the presidential debate. It was Fatih Birol, the renowned chief economist of the International Energy Agency, speaking about the pressing need to transition away from fossil fuels...
(16 October 2012)
Kate Sheppard, Foreign Policy
Was it really just six years ago when a documentary about climate change -- Al Gore's An Inconvenient Truth -- could draw $24 million at the U.S. box office? That was back when the words "housing bubble" were just entering the average American's lexicon, back before the liquidation of Lehman Brothers, back when we would voluntarily fork over cash to sit in a dark room while a former vice president told us that we're all boiling ourselves to death.
There was, for a brief period then, a sort of optimism about what the United States could accomplish on climate change. President George W. Bush, already on his way out the door in April 2008, affirmed that human activity was causing global warming and vowed that the "ingenuity and enterprise of the American people" would help us overcome it...
(16 October 2012)
From FP's 'Who Won the Recession' feature. Do they think it's over?
Why we can't bank on recessions to keep global warming in check
Duncan Clark, The Guardian
Greenhouse gas emissions rise when economies expand but don't fall as quickly when recession strikes, according to new research that emphasises the risks of relying on economic downturns to keep future emissions in check.
The most likely reason is that carbon-emitting vehicles and infrastructure created as the economy grows continue to be used in harder times, even as the economy contracts.
Based on a review of World Bank statistics of more than 150 nations from 1960 to 2008, the research – published in Nature Climate Change on Sunday – found that emissions of carbon dioxide rose by an average of 0.7% for every 1% growth in gross domestic product (GDP) per capita. But emissions fell just 0.43% for every 1% decline in GDP per capita...
(8 October 2012)