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McKibben writes: "The Obama administration's decision to give Shell Oil the go-ahead to drill in the Arctic shows why we may never win the fight against climate change. Even in this most extreme circumstance, no one seems able to stand up to the power of the fossil fuel industry."

Activists in Seattle protest Arctic drilling in April. (photo: Jason Redmond/Reuters)
Activists in Seattle protest Arctic drilling in April. (photo: Jason Redmond/Reuters)

Obama's Catastrophic Climate-Change Denial

By Bill McKibben, The New York Times

22 May 15


HE Obama administration’s decision to give Shell Oil the go-ahead to drill in the Arctic shows why we may never win the fight against climate change. Even in this most extreme circumstance, no one seems able to stand up to the power of the fossil fuel industry. No one ever says no.

By “extreme” I don’t just mean that Shell will be drilling for oil in places where there’s no hope of cleaning up the inevitable spills (remember the ineptness of BP in the balmy, accessible Gulf of Mexico, and now transpose it 40 degrees of latitude north, into some of the harshest seas on the planet).

No, what’s most extreme here is the irresponsibility of Shell, now abetted by the White House. A quarter century ago, scientists warned that if we kept burning fossil fuel at current rates we’d melt the Arctic. The fossil fuel industry (and most everyone else in power) ignored those warnings, and what do you know: The Arctic is melting, to the extent that people now are planning to race yachts through the Northwest Passage, which until very recently required an icebreaker to navigate.

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+28 # Activista 2015-05-22 15:11
Any USA administration/ politicians are under the control of money/oligarchs . The drilling by Shell Oil in Arctic is a great risk - like the nuclear plant in Japan. We need to STOP it.
+25 # indian weaver 2015-05-22 15:27
Whatever it takes to stop Shell / B/P, it's justified. They are murderers and destroyers of our beautiful Great Mother Earth. What's it gonna take to take out Shell, B/P, etc.? Only the complete collapse of the planet and all life will destroy Shell Only when everything is burned up, all fuel drilled, sucked, burnt and spent, then Shell will go away, like everything else. They still have infinite amounts of fuel to burn, so this is going to take awhile - for our Great Mother to die, a la humans, the only "Intelligent Life" in the universe. With this kind of intelligence, who needs ignorance? This is why no intelligent life exists in the universe - it's not intelligent. Any really intelligent sentient beings are probably sorry to see us destroy such a cosmic gem as our Great Mother. Even God, the Buddha, Jesus, Mohammed and your mother are disgusted with what God hath Wrought here, or whatever.
+5 # Eldon J. Bloedorn 2015-05-24 12:22
Unfortunately, Climate deniers seem to be if not winning, at least holding fast to their arguments. Look at the climate deniers ratings based on their comments on this board.

Only in America.
+16 # Activista 2015-05-22 15:40
California Oil Spill -
look at the pictures ... environmental terrorism? - using US political jargon
-22 # MidwestTom 2015-05-23 09:39
Where I live it gets very cold during the winter and I heat my house by burning natural gas, which thanks to Shell and all of the other oil companies that drill and produce it, I can buy a reasonable price. I could stop doing that and burn wood in my fireplace and kitchen stove, but if all of my neighbors did that the sky would be black in the winter.

I also drive a car which uses gasoline to propel it. I could get a horse, but if everybody got a horse we would run out of feed for the horse, because they eat a lot; so again I am thankful that Shell produces gasoline for me. I could get an electric car, but I would have to charge it with electricity made by a power plant that burns either coal, oil, or natural gas. I know that solar and wind now account for 4% of electric generation in the area, but for now I need Shell, and so does every American.
+12 # Malcolm 2015-05-23 10:56

Tom, lots of people make that claim about electric cars. It's called the "long tailpipe argument". But recently, a large number of reports have been written that make the claim that more electricity so used to MAKE gasoline than is needed to power electric vehicles. Here's one:

" "It takes more electricity to drive the average gasoline car 100 miles, than it does to drive an electric car 100 miles."

Let's go over that again. If we simply count the electricity used to make the gasoline that gets burned in a normal vehicle, you need more juice than you do to move an EV the same distance. Of course, then you need to factor in the actual gasoline used (and the resulting CO2 emissions). Plus, don't forget, it takes a bunch of water to refine gasoline. Put this all together and you've got on hell of an energy efficiency argument in favor of plug-in vehicles. Here are some numbers (get more details in Norby's post).

There is no exact calculation for how much electricity it takes to drill, transport and refine a gallon of gasoline, but the accepted amount is around 8 kWh.
+8 # Malcolm 2015-05-23 10:58
Part 2
"So, for 8 kWh, you can go around 22 miles (using the U.S. average; we know you can go over twice that if you drive a Toyota Prius). That means that a gasoline car uses just under 40 kWh to go 100 miles. An EV, on the other hand, uses around 30 kWh to go 100 miles (given 3.3 miles per kWh, which is on the low side for some cars). Even if the exact numbers need to be shifted a bit one way or the other, we're just comparing electricity use here – not the petroleum that needs to be factored in for the ICE vehicle. So, if we were able to magically use all the electricity that is currently spent to give us gas and shove it into automotive battery packs instead, we'd use less energy and no gasoline."

Admittedly, the 6 kwh figure can be disputed. Among other issues, oil companies are no longer required to report how much electricity is required to manufacture gasoline.
But the point is, electric cars are FAR SUPERIOR to those powered by fossil fuels.

And I'm not just referring to EV's. Even WAY more efficient than EV's are Personal Rapid Transportation systems. No batteries needed.

BOTTOM LINE: all we need to do, if we want adequate electric power to switch to an all electric vehicle transportation system, is STOP MAKING GASOLINE!
-9 # MidwestTom 2015-05-23 14:05
It has probably improved now, but about eight ornate years ago Popular science looked at average emissions from a power plant to produce enough electricity to drive an electric car 10 miles, versus emissions from a gasoline car driving 10 miles, and the result was that the gasoline car was slightly cleaner. Now since then power plants have gotten cleaner and cars now get better mileage so they are cleaner. I have not seen the calculation for current conditions.
+7 # Malcolm 2015-05-23 14:21
I think you missed my point, Tom. It appears that it takes as much electricity to make one gasoline as it does to operate an electric car as far as a gallon of gas can carry a car, REGARDLESS how clean or how dirty the power plant making the electricity.
-5 # MidwestTom 2015-05-23 14:07
If we really wanted to get serious about pollution the first thing I would do is outlaw drive up windows. Engines are at their dirtiest when idling.
+10 # Eldon J. Bloedorn 2015-05-23 11:02
To: MidwestTom

You do own a company.

That company does supply chemicals to the "fracking" industry.

Those companies which are your customers use those chemicals for fracking.

Is that true?

I'm sure I'll get @ least one red ink.

Remember, "Science is true whether you believe it or not."
+7 # NAVYVET 2015-05-23 13:53
You mean Shell. To hell with Shell.

And all the other oligarchs who destroy us for quick profit whivh goes largely to the management--and of course to their heirs that now get untaxed freebies, allowing them, like the barons of old, to be non-working TAKERS who spend their time thinking up new ways to enslave the rest of us.
+4 # lfeuille 2015-05-23 19:08
Where I live we are able to choose to buy wind power through the grid (and maybe solar in some cases). Wind is capable of powering the grid. But too many state politicians refuse to let it.
+10 # reiverpacific 2015-05-22 22:06
Aye: be prepared to be flushed out like an inconvenient turd stuck up the passage.
Our culture is so advanced, it totally bypasses what keeps us alive and breathing.
I'm not gonna inflict the Cree prophesy on y'all again, so I'll leave it to an ancient, wise Persian;
"For in the Marketplace at dusk of day,
I watched the potter slapping his wet clay;
And with it's all obliterated Tongue
It murmur'd -"Gently Brother, gently -pray!".
+4 # WestWinds 2015-05-23 01:26

--- I wanna hear the Cree prophesy again.
-58 # brycenuc 2015-05-22 23:07
Bill McKibben is wrong on climate change, just as are the rest of the alarmists. The Arctic ice is not diminishing as fast as the Antarctic ice is growing. There has never been a consistent correlation between atmospheric CO2 and its temperature, and the current divergence between the two has lasted more than 18 years. If all the carbon in all the world's fossil fuels were converted to CO2 and put in to the atmosphere at a rate which is more than it has ever been put in there, the all-time maximum temperature for that would only be 1 deg. C. McKibben and his acolytes are costing the taxpayer billions for the privilege destroying future world economy for absolutely no reason whatever.
+24 # jimallyn 2015-05-22 23:32
Pardon me, but your ignorance is showing.
+7 # Ray Kondrasuk 2015-05-23 00:19
Also showing.... more open seawater in the Arctic to absorb insolation.

Antarctic sea ice has summer melt-back only to its glacier-covered land mass; the southern ice cap keeps its roughly .93 albedo while the Arctic open water has an albedo of .07.
+8 # maddave 2015-05-23 01:05
So, Ray, Let me see if I get this right: What you are saying is that "albedo" differences (the energy reflected back into space by a planet) between seas once covered year-round (or nearly so), with white ice and those same Summer seas, now-ice-free open waters, is an incalculable massive amount of energy trapped in the Antarctic waters.
Is that close?
The same must be true of the Arctic.
Obviously, adding this energy over such massive areaa will raise seawater temperatures and, hence, alter both sea currents and climates in both hemispheres ... and unpredictably so.
-13 # MidwestTom 2015-05-23 09:30
Starting the the famous Hockey Stick Projection, predicting rapid temperature rise in the the 1990's not one climatic projection made more than five years ago has come true.

If you truly believed the Climate Change religion (it is not a science, because a science can actually predict what will happen with accuracy) ten years ago you would have expected the oceans to be at least 6 to 12 inches higher by now and the earth to be 3 to 5 degrees warmer.
-6 # Malcolm 2015-05-23 10:23

Indeed, since SOME satellites are showing no global warming for many long years, the global warming High Priests have decided maybe satellite records are NOT all that reliable. Had the records shown temperatures to be RISING, I presume they'd have accepted the data, no questions asked.

"In fact, for the time period 1987–2006, the temperatures among the four groups that collect satellite data ranges from 0.086°C per decade to 0.22°C per decade. In more recent years, the trend is much reduced, and for two of the leading satellite groups (University of Alabama at Huntsville, and Remote Sensing Systems), temperatures are basically flat." NOTE: even when data showed rising temperatures, the data were in disagreement. .086 to .22°? That's a HUGE discrepancy!

By the way, having a couple of decades experience working with land-based temperature monitoring, I've written many times, at this site and elsewhere, that the recording thermographs deliver data that can be off by over 15°. At best, these data are accurate to +/- 2-3° F.

To take this "garbage in" data, and make predictions of future changes in the 1-2° range is, clearly, "garbage out". GIGO!

I'm not saying the earth isn't warming. I'm saying the High Priests' predictions are-like the Hockey Stick, no better than a guess.
+8 # Eldon J. Bloedorn 2015-05-23 11:23
You might want to to type into your computer address bar, "Bangladesh losing its coastline." Or, how about, Newport Beach Ca, and its associated island, Balboa Island.

The City of Newport Beach has a serious problem. Storm drain sewers which empty into the ocean are now backing up into the city. The city is trying to figure out ways prevent this event from happening by using specially constructed storm "gates." Why is this important? You know, people who live in that area have found mold to be a problem when ocean water threatens and backs up into their homes.

When will U S citizens learn basic laws of physics and chemistry?

That Carbon Dioxide, a gas in the atmosphere which unlike other component gases absorbs reflected infra red energy from Earth. Consequently, causes a warming effect. Nature so intended that a certain amount of CO2 is necessary in the atmosphere for a number of reasons. One being that Earth, to sustain life, needs a certain balance of warmth, a range of temperature change within limits.

CO2 is unusual in that it like other atmospheric gases easily allows the passage of high frequency radiation from the sun to Earth. But, it absorbs reflected infra red energy from Earth.

Easily forgotten. One example: we use smog converters on our cars. Those devices convert a deadly carbon mono gas to carbon dioxide. Obviously, the gas gets ejected into the atmosphere. Where does it stay? In the atmosphere.
+4 # Eldon J. Bloedorn 2015-05-23 11:39

While it is known that U S citizens rank 25th in the world based on the upper 10th percentile, science scores, they should be smart enough to know that carbon dioxide is a product of combustion. Generated by burning fossil fuels.Smog converters are just one example of forcing the atmosphere to take in more CO2 than Nature's original design. Not to mention the huge influx of CO2 forced into the atmosphere by coal fired power plants.

One day, and hopefully before it is too late, Americans will understand that The Creator Of The Universe does speak to us in terms of math, science, chemistry, physics. You mess with the Creator's laws, you pay the price. You destroy perhaps our only home in the Universe.

Until recently, why the denial of climate change? I think it may be simply a matter of the fossil fuel industry forcing the planet into a distress state. Then, the governments will be forced to take action that the fossil fuel industry is refusing to take, not taking. Governments world-wide will have to clean up the fossil fuel industry mess. And the price tag will not be cheap but horrendous. Will the fossil fuel industry get off scott free?

Depends on much money they can supply to the hungry politicians, buy votes, who need campaign contributions to preserve their envious life style.

The U S has a below normal rated average national I Q of 98. We know 100 is normal. Hong Kong, while not a country, has the highest rated I Q of any nation.
+3 # Eldon J. Bloedorn 2015-05-23 11:58
Any country with a below average national I Q will not easily understand Nature's laws. And I say to the American people, based on this nation's attitude toward science vs.religion what I say to the fat lady when she gets into her car, heads into town to visit the beauty parlor. "Good luck to you."

The U S has 50 organizations which are specifically created to "dumb down" Americans. One of them is The American Petroleum Institute. Some powerful people, past and present have done and are doing their share to dumb down Americans.

I read J. Edgar Hoover's book some years ago. "Masters Of Deceit."One of his striking comments, "we should not promote, emphasize science in the American school system. To do so will weaken Christianity." When I read that statement, I was on my way "out the door" of the Republican party.

That statement kept the door open until I passed through it and I made sure the door the door slammed shut ever since.
+1 # Malcolm 2015-05-23 14:46
"Nature's Original Design"? Is that the same as "intelligent design"? Sorry, but I'm one of those nasty evolutionists. There's no "original design" in my universe.

Oh, I see you ARE a creationist. The Creator Of The Universe indeed!

And you dare discuss science!
+2 # Eldon J. Bloedorn 2015-05-23 17:12
Think you may not have taken the time to fully understand my comments. I believe in evolution. To think a human was not designed, the atmosphere was not designed for practical function and subject to constant change (evolution) is to deny what we see, observe. Man is causing the atmosphere to change by polluting it. Nature has a hand in it, eruptions, etc.

I did not make the rules. I only follow the rules. Nature has laws. We break them, we pay.

Having said that, take some science courses. Get up to speed. Then, get back to me.

I do have a bachelor's degree, science. One year of post grad work. I love science. It is my life's hobby.
+1 # Malcolm 2015-05-23 14:38
Not sure why you're telling me about Newport Beach's SUBSIDENCE, in response to my comments on TEMPERATURE measurements.

Regardless of your motives, I'm assuming Newport Beach is SINKING. Consider its history, similar to that all around San Francisco Bay, which I helped survey in the early 1970s. I worked for USGS, and we were hired to do the FEMA flood plain maps.

You may not realize that SF Bay used to be about 50% larger than it is today, due to mining-caused sedimentation and deliberate land fills.

Most of the cities built on bay fill have subsided. Nature of the beast. Buildings along the north side of San Francisco have sunk up to 4-5 feet. Downtown Corte Madera has sunk to about two feet below sea level. I would guess the same is happening in Newport Beach,balthough I have never surveyed there. I'd be willing to give odds that the problems you describe are NOT sea level rise, but rather land subsidence.

By the way, I see you live in Riverside. That's another area that's subsiding. Will you blame CO2 when your home sinks below sea level? That might make you feel good, but it won't solve the problem :)
-1 # Eldon J. Bloedorn 2015-05-23 17:34
Your comments are not fact based, but opinion based. You state, "Regardless of your motives, I'm assuming Newport Beach is sinking..." What may be true for the San Fancisco Bay area, and I'm not sure it is, may not be necessarily true for the Newport Beach area.

Scientists do not assume. They think. An assumption is not fact based. Although an assumption might be if based on fact.

When you learn to use reference points as surveyors do, get back to me and then we can talk about Newport Beach. How the city and associated islands are sinking. Also, when you "educate" me on why you assume Newport Beach is sinking, please use valid surveyor's reference points. OK? Do you use sea level reference points? High tide? Low tide. Mean tide? What tide? I do know that when my company used sea level as a reference point when we built a peaker power plant for the City of Glendale, Ca. we used ocean level as a reference point. Now, if the sea level is rising, can we say, "Newport Beach is sinking?" Practical question for a surveyor.

Please tell me how Bangladesh is "sinking." Where is Bangladesh sinking to? Tell me about how Miami Beach is sinking. Where is it "sinking to?"

I keep hearing from climate deniers that "all is sinking!" What? I say in jest, is Earth getting smaller? Is the ocean also "sinking?"
0 # Malcolm 2015-05-24 07:57
"Scientists do not assume. They think." I THINK that's a pretty strange statement.

Ok, here's a website that supports my thoughtless assumption:

"Along the southwestern margin of the Planning Area, sediments flowing from the two major drainage courses that transect the mesa have formed the beaches, sandbars, and mudflats of Newport Bay and West Newport. These lowland areas were significantly modified during the last century in order to deepen channels for navigation and form habitable islands..."

"Compressible soils underlie a significant part of the City, typically in the lowland areas and in canyon bottoms. These are generally young sediments of low density with variable amounts of organic materials. Under the added weight of fill embankments or buildings, these sediments will settle, causing distress to improvements. Low-density soils, if sandy in composition and saturated with water, will also be susceptible of the effects of liquefaction during a moderate to strong earthquake."

Assuming (oh, garsh, there's that bad word again) that these "habitable islands" that were formed from estuarine mud were, in fact, habitated, one can safely assume they would behave the same way other areas that are built on areas artificially constructed with estuarine mud. Like around San Francisco Bay. By settling.

-5 # Malcolm 2015-05-24 08:17
I'm not traveling 1000 miles in order to satisfy your desire for "valid surveyor's reference points." Those points are, um, "pointless", anyway.

FYI, "sea level" is generally considered to be the average of mean low tide and mean high tide.

Bangladesh? Miami? I said nothing about those locations. I addressed Newport Beach, simply because YOU brought it up, acting as though it was indicative of worldwide sea level rise.

Read some geology, or some oceanology, sir. You'll find that virtually every seacoast is either rising or falling. For the most part, in the USA, the east coast is sinking. The west coast is rising. Look at Chesapeake Bay, for an excellent example of what happens when land sinks below sea level. This is not some scam made by climate skeptics.
-3 # Eldon J. Bloedorn 2015-05-24 12:33
Malcomb, you state that Newport Beach and associated island are sinking.

There is no scientific evidence to support your claim that "Newport Beach is sinking." None.

Then you say, ""The West Coast is rising."But, previously you said, "San Francisco is sinking and Newport Beach."

OK, in jest, are you now saying the ocean is sinking? A little humor
-1 # Malcolm 2015-05-26 07:42
Don't be stupid. Generally speaking, the west coast is being uplifted. That doesn't mean some areas are not subsiding.

+4 # Eldon J. Bloedorn 2015-05-24 12:11
Malcom, You have convinced me that you are surveyor. Not a scientist. I think a surveyor is not equipped by training to be a scientist, fully understand science. Why? Your training is simply math based to the exclusion of, physics, chemistry. Perhaps you should not be commenting in areas outside your level of expertise?

I do laugh (and cry) that the climate change deniers are now using a new scheme. "Lands bordering the ocean are sinking, sea level is staying the same." Pretty wild stuff unsubstantiated stuff.

All the while scientists are in agreement that atmospheric CO2 absorbs low frequency radiation reflected from Earth. Causes warming. That warming, including ocean warming, causes evaporation. Water vapor absorbs infra red radiation. Increased water vapor in the atmosphere absorbs more reflected infra red radiation from Earth which increases climate warming.

If you and your fellow non-science surveyors can pull this off, get the public to believe you, I say the U S citizen is definitely deserves its internationally ranked rating of being below normal I Q. U S is ranked internationally at 98. 100 is normal.

The U S is ranked 25th in the world, science, math scores, based on the upper 10th percentile. You might get the U S to believe your story. And the 50 organizations in the U S which are devoted to dumbing down the U S citizen are take another bow.
-1 # Malcolm 2015-05-26 07:44
Nice try. If YOU were a scientist, you might refrain from making ridiculous assumptions!

Guess what? When I did the surveying you're talking about, I was a hydrologist. Last I heard, hydrologists were also known as scientists.

Crawl back under your rock.
+14 # maddave 2015-05-23 00:21
brycenuc . . . You do not know WTF you are talking about. That shows in your first two statements. Like all other climate observers, McKibben may err somewhat, but he is certainly within reasonable limits.
Your second (pseudo-intelle ctual) statement: "Antarctic ice is growing at a record pace" reveals a classic intellectual sloth. I invite you to do as I did: google "Changes in Antarctic Ice" and read the wealth of info regarding the types, of ice and their characteristic growth & declines.. The rapidly diminishing "Land Ice" built up steadily over millions of years. It is the sole meaningful gauge climate change in the Antarctic. "Sea ice",on the other hand, comes and goes annually--some years more , some years less. This is the classic contrast between "weather" an "Climate"--some thing beyond the ken of the likes of Lush Rimbaugh & Company. .
Those, like Rimbaugh, who conflate the two dissimilar phenomena are just as likely not count the growth of annual meadow weeds & grass as growth in the numbers of ancient trees in the world's also-diminishin g rainforests. (Let's save that subject for another day.),
+3 # WestWinds 2015-05-23 01:31
"El Rushbo" he likes to be called El Rushbo.
+16 # Phillybuster 2015-05-23 00:42
97% of those alarmists are the world's best trained and experienced climatologists.
-9 # MidwestTom 2015-05-23 10:17
98% of the alarmist in the climate change arena are receiving compensation for studying climate change. If they deny or doubt it their money goes away. Some people believe the New World Order, known in America as Goldman Sacks, is actually funding most of the climate change hysteria to sell the uniformed voters on the idea, so that they can get Carbon Trading mandated, which Goldman Sacks will be operating, and making additional Billions.

Follow the money, if you want to know who is behind anything.
+2 # Questions, questions 2015-05-24 13:00
What an incredibly cynical and unreasonable argument to make. Yes, follow the money - but the vast majority of it clearly leads to the CEOs and major investors in fossil fuel industries! And come on, NOBODY gets rich doing real science (that not paid for by corporate polluters). So what do you do for a living?

Cap and trade may not be the best approach to really tackle climate disruption, but they've made it almost impossible in this country to talk about ANY solution that isn't within the capitalist framework. What's your solution? (if you even think there's a problem - besides those black helicopters whirring overhead...)
0 # bingers 2015-05-25 23:51
Follow the money, if you want to know who is behind anything.

Follow the money indeed. The only ones getting rich from the climate issue are the ones paid by the fossil fuel industry.
+10 # WestWinds 2015-05-23 01:34

--- The very fact that you put "future world economy" and "costing taxpayer billions" in the same paragraph with "climate change" is a big red flag.

I think the group is giving this post a "pants on fire" rating.
+2 # Eldon J. Bloedorn 2015-05-23 12:01
You may be 100 % right in your personal opinion. But, when facts enter the scene, you are 100 % wrong. You have a right to your personal opinion, but not your own facts.
+2 # Malcolm 2015-05-23 14:49
You have facts about the "Creator of the Universe"?
-5 # Eldon J. Bloedorn 2015-05-23 17:54
Ben Franklin's comment to a friend: "Did you make the universe?"


Franklin: "Nor did I.But Something did make the universe if you and I did not"

If that reasoning is good enough for Franklin, it serves me well also.

Nobody has the intelligence to understand "The Creator." Yet, I do think there was, is one. That is all I know. Those who say they do are "religionists." And, I don't get into, I pass on religion.
0 # bingers 2015-05-25 23:56
It doesn't take a Godlike creator, it takes natural physics happening over billions of years. Not overnight as the Bible claims, although it probably doesn't mean that literally. But you never know, it was written by primitive people with little understanding of anything scientific. For instance, the Bible tells of Moses parting the red sea, while the Egyptians wrote "A meteor struck and the emperor was killed."
+3 # NAVYVET 2015-05-23 13:57
Whoa! Here's someone who gets all his
news" from Faux!
-3 # Eldon J. Bloedorn 2015-05-23 14:27
You are entitled to your own opinion but not your own facts.
+3 # A_Har 2015-05-24 22:17
Quoting brycenuc:
Bill McKibben is wrong on climate change, just as are the rest of the alarmists.

Oh really? Your post is such a splendid example of this article from the Guardian:

97% global warming consensus meets resistance from scientific denialism

The robust climate consensus faces resistance from conspiracy theories, cherry picking, and misrepresentations

Dana Nuccitelli

"The Skeptical Science survey finding 97% expert consensus on human-caused global warming has drawn an incredible amount of media attention. Hundreds of media stories documented our survey and results. Lead author John Cook and I participated in a number of interviews to discuss the paper, including on Al Jazeera, CNN, and ABC. President Obama even Tweeted about our results to his 31 million followers.

The story has been so popular mainly because our results present a simple but critical message. There is a wide gap between the public awareness and the reality of the expert consensus on human-caused global warming...."

Read may find it helpful.
+19 # Shorey13 2015-05-22 23:17
Not noted herein: the next day, Obama publicly attacked climate change deniers. Can you say cognitive dissonance? Also not noted (as usual) without all that oil, our economy would collapse in a couple of days.

The human race is collectively decompensating. Falling apart. Evil is everywhere, robots are poised to eliminate 090% of our jobs (yet there is no plan whatsoever for a guaranteed income), millions of children in the world's richest country go to bed hungry every night, and today's PBS news featured the alarming increase in Senior poverty (one in six in dire poverty).

I would agree with you, reiverpacific, except that prayer is clearly useless. God is too busy painting her nails.

I keep asking: How bad does it have to get?
+12 # WestWinds 2015-05-23 01:43

--- In 1937, the German people all threw their support behind the fascist, Hitler. And now, this country is doing the exact same thing; throwing their support behind the global fascists in this country. It's mind boggling. Although, I've heard that the small business community is finally waking up to the fact that the Right-wing does NOT support their best interests. I hope so. This intentional stupidity is wearing.

As for BHO's "cognitive dissonance"... I think it's more a case of "keep them guessing" because one thing is very clear, this POTUS is not a clean hands player.
+7 # maddave 2015-05-23 01:49
Shorey.God bless you!

For now, forget climate deniers and whatever they say and do. For right now, they are merely distractions. Our big problems in the USA (and the world) are as you state. What you and i need NOW are jobs that pay living wages; adequate & affordable physical, mental and dental health care; stable Social Security; affordable education opportunities; a cap on welfare for the rich (tax loopholes, etc); money to meet the transportation and highway needs of this country; forward-looking clean air, pure water and safe land projects; take all private & corporate money out of the elections; strengthen unions; etc, etc.

Pardon me if I point out these things will happen ONLY under a progressive/lib eral President and Congress. These are the very things that the GOP has battled furiously against for more than a century, and from the comments & opinions of current conservative Congressional leaders and presidential candidate-wanna bes, they are so beholden to our Military-Indust rial-Financial Complex for huge campaign contributions and post-Congress jobs, that they will do ABSOLUTELY NOTHING FOR THE WORKING PEOPLE WHO HAVE SUFFERED HALF A CENTURY OF STAGNANT OR, MORE COMMONLY, CONSTANTLY DECREASING STANDARDS OF LIVING ... BUT ANYTHING FOR THEIR BUDDIES, THE BLOODSUCKING BILLIONAIRES.
+7 # fredrad 2015-05-22 23:41
brycenuc, please site your references. I would love to believe what you say but I don't think it jibes with any reputable scientific studies.
+5 # universlman 2015-05-23 06:06
This will not happen. There is only bluster behind the words of brycenuc - no courage.
-2 # brycenuc 2015-05-24 08:50
Google "Nature Abhors a Positive Feedback" for an explanation of what I am saying and a derivation the mathematics utilized as well as a list of references.
+3 # skywatcher 2015-05-23 05:28
Although I've found it easy to agree with McKibben about the odious practices of fracking, Arctic drilling, etc., it's also beyond disappointing that he won't acknowledge that geoengineering is not the 'hypothetical' scenario that liars like David Keith advance. This is like the Emperor's New Clothes, right in front of us, every day. Wake up folks--subatmos pheric aerosol spraying of aluminum, barium, strontium and many other toxins has been the norm in NATO (and increasingly other, though not all) countries for almost two decades--and is the true no. 1 force behind climate change (as bad as fracking, tar sands extraction, etc, are--and they're Bad.) Hyperbolic? Do your research--and just start looking upward, every day. You can start with the air force's own paper: and find plenty at . Watch WITWATS free at youtube, get current with tens of millions of others.
-4 # Malcolm 2015-05-23 09:14
The paper at was written in 1996, and is a fictional piece-sci fi, in reality-specula ting what COULD HAPPEN in 2025. Are you suggesting the paper is describing the illustrious "chem trails" that have so many pairs of panties in a twist?
0 # Questions, questions 2015-05-24 13:11
And they (whoever "they" is - chemtrails folks are never very specific) are doing all this for what secret and non-discussed purpose? To improve the weather? Or is it yet another devious way they're trying to kill us all, however inefficiently? (In which case, I'd suggest you increase your meds...)
0 # Stilldreamin1 2015-05-23 08:41
Lip service
+3 # Rich Austin 2015-05-23 11:09
Plastic kayaks transported to the demonstration by gasoline burning trucks. Both are derivatives of fossil fuels. Ditto the made-in-China synthetic crap the protestors purchase at WalMart on a daily basis.

Yes, their s_ _ _ stinks too.

Most people work out of necessity and some people protest as a hobby. In the first instance workers would prefer to have jobs that are environmentally -friendly, but where are they? It is unreasonable to expect working class families to give up so-called “dirty” jobs and thus their livelihoods.

The solution is Just Transition as envisioned by the old Oil, Chemical and Atomic Workers Union back in 1991. It is the holy grail that labor and environmentalis ts must embrace so that together we can address climate change.

Boeing is located just a few miles from the Polar Pioneer. You know Boeing - it’s the outfit that built the cruise missiles that rained down on innocent Iraqi our name! Where were/are the protestors at Boeing? (Now that the draft is gone who cares, huh?)

Absolutism is the enemy of progress. In order to deal with climate change we need to work together.

(Hint: Tossing working families to the curb is not an acceptable option. Promises of “green jobs” in the future does exactly what for running a household today? The old pie in the sky when we die malarkey is a lie.)
+7 # NAVYVET 2015-05-23 14:11
Rich, I agree with your strong desire for a sane plan to re-educate and make a clear transition from old buggy-whip jobs to new solar/wind jobs. But WAKE UP! NATION magazine and PROGRESSIVE magazine have featured recent articles on the growing alliance between environmentalis m and unionization--t o build new industries and new jobs. I worked in that field myself for almost 14 years.

As for Boeing, I'm a member of Veterans for Peace and Vietnam Veterans Against the War. There have been peace veterans' protests at Boeing--FOR YEARS. Locally, the Grannies for Peace brigade that I belong to tackles the missile and drone manufacturers monthly, although most of us are elderly and in terms of money and avoiding the pain of travel, can't afford a trip across country, so we must do our demonstrating locally.

That's right, locally. Just like the most admirable of the people who must work to support themselves and their families -- but are brave enough come out to local demos against the companies they work for. I know. I've talked to them. They HATE their employers.
-3 # BKnowswhitt2 2015-05-23 21:47
I preface my comments with this. Overall i ike Obama very much. However his stance on 'Global Warming' ie changed to 'Climate Change' after the emails UK proven that the 'scientists' asked those others who disagreed to 'get on board' .. let's be clear that is not even remotely how Science works. Also up to the most recent presidental roast at which Obama clearly said that 8 of last 10 years hottest in history of recorded mankind. Factually incorrect and completely inaccurate. This badly badly taints the Obama admin ... here is what the argument LEFT is and should be on this article subject ...
-3 # BKnowswhitt2 2015-05-23 21:51
.. that when a sitting president 'allows' policies like this one ... the question should be this: "How is it that you award the land for private gain and interest?" If you do that as a sitting president . then why isn't it "for the people you represent?" ... with 'limitations' of how that oil should be distributed to the economy and et al? Those should be the gripe and are mine of the LEFT instead of the phone unproven false Global Warming out of touch with reality Climate Change hoaxers ... pay attention folks they want you in that mode ... you shoudl instead ask yourselves WHY and how come H'es going there ...
+2 # rhgreen 2015-05-25 11:54
I agree with Bill McKibben entirely, but to be fair to President Obama he has always said that his priority is oil supplies that are either domestic or close to home and "secure". Thus drilling in the Gulf of Mexico and the Alaskan Arctic is consistent with this. His veto of the Keystone XL pipeline was, as he said, because it offered nothing to the US except the environmental risk of transporting the nasty Alberta tar sands heavy oil across the US so it could be refined in Texas and shipped overseas. It was not because he was worried about Global Warning. Not that I agree with Obama or BKnowswhitt2 on that. The science on global warming is sound and those who deny it have their heads in the sand. But give Obama credit for being consistent.
0 # Malcolm 2015-05-27 21:49
Rhgreeen you say, "The science on global warming is sound and those who deny it have their heads in the sand."

Facile facile facile. A skeptic can just as easily paraphrase you with The science on global warming is not sound and those who believe it have their heads in the sand. "

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