Exxon Confirmed Global Warming Consensus in 1982 with In-House Climate Models

Exxon: The Road Not Taken

Exxon Confirmed Global Warming Consensus in 1982 with In-House Climate Models

The company chairman would later mock climate models as unreliable while he campaigned to stop global action to reduce fossil fuel emissions.

Lisa Song, Neela Banerjee, David Hasemyer

Sep 22, 2015

Steve Knisely was an intern at Exxon Research and Engineering in the summer of 1979 when a vice president asked him to analyze how global warming might affect fuel use.

“I think this guy was looking for validation that the greenhouse effect should spur some investment in alternative energy that’s not bad for the environment,” Knisely, now 58 and a partner in a management consulting company, recalled in a recent interview.

Knisely projected that unless fossil fuel use was constrained, there would be “noticeable temperature changes” and 400 parts per million of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the air by 2010, up from about 280 ppm before the Industrial Revolution. The summer intern’s predictions turned out to be very close to the mark.

Knisely even concluded that the fossil fuel industry might need to leave 80 percent of its recoverable reserves in the ground to avoid doubling CO2 concentrations, a notion now known as the carbon budget. In 2013, the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change formally endorsed the idea.

“The potential problem is great and urgent,” Knisely wrote. “Too little is known at this time to recommend a major U.S. or worldwide change in energy type usage but it is very clear that immediate research is necessary.”

Continue reading “Exxon Confirmed Global Warming Consensus in 1982 with In-House Climate Models”

Republican Frontrunners Avoid Climate Change

Republican Frontrunners Avoid Climate Change

Only candidates trailing in the polls mentioned global warming

In that undercard debate, the moderator asked Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) if he was at the wrong party’s debate, pointing to his unorthodox positions on climate change and immigration.
John Orrell/Flickr, CC BY 2.0
Three Republican presidential candidates stated their belief in climate change last night during two debates that wandered from economic policies to sharp attacks on the media. The trio combined capture less than 5 percent of voters’ support in polling.

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie condemned Democratic efforts to curtail greenhouse gas emissions through regulations while pointing to his state’s success at installing solar systems on residential rooftops and businesses.

He expressed support for oil and gas production but also noted that solar and wind are cheap sources of electricity in some areas of the country. He claimed that in New Jersey, “we work with the private sector to make solar energy affordable.”

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UN: Climate plans must go further to prevent dangerous warming

UN: Climate plans must go further to prevent dangerous warming

chimneysImage copyright Thinkstock
Image caption Carbon emissions will be “significantly dented” according to the UN, if all the plans are put into action

The UN has released its assessment of national plans to limit climate change, submitted by 146 countries.

Officials say the submissions, in their current form, won’t keep global temperatures from rising by more than the 2C danger threshold.

The global total of carbon emissions will continue to grow, although more slowly than over the past two decades.

However the UN report says the plans are a major step forward and the 2C goal is still “within reach”. Continue reading “UN: Climate plans must go further to prevent dangerous warming”

GOP-led Congress moves to block Obama’s Clean Power Plan

GOP-led Congress moves to block Obama’s Clean Power Plan

House, Senate move to block Obama plan to cut greenhouse gas emissions from US power plants

Associated Press

GOP-led Congress moves to block Obama's Clean Power Plan

FILE – In this July 1, 2013, file photo, smoke rises from the Colstrip Steam Electric Station, a coal burning power plant in in Colstrip, Mont. Congressional Republicans are moving to block President Barack Obama’s plan to force steep cuts in greenhouse gas emissions from U.S. power plants. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Ky., and Rep. Ed Whitfield, R-Ky. say they will file resolutions this week opposing Obama’s plan to impose new regulations on new and existing coal-fired plants. (AP Photo/Matthew Brown, File)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Congressional Republicans are moving to block President Barack Obama’s plan to force steep cuts in greenhouse gas emissions from U.S. power plants.

Rep. Ed Whitfield, R-Ky., filed resolutions on Monday opposing Obama’s plan to impose new regulations on new and existing coal-fired plants. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell was expected to follow suit late Monday or Tuesday.

The challenges by the two Kentucky Republicans were being filed under the little-used Congressional Review Act, which allows Congress to block executive actions with simply majority votes. The maneuver is subject to a presidential veto and has rarely been successful in overturning executive branch rules.

 

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The Great Climate Change Hoax Rumbles On!

The Great Climate Change Hoax Rumbles On!

NASA’s “research is under increasing fire by some Republican leaders in Congress, who deny or question the scientific consensus.”

I’m telling you, this has to be the most elaborate hoax in human history.

Each year, the federal government spends about $1 billion to support Arctic and Antarctic research by thousands of scientists like Dr. Smith and his team. The agency officials who receive that money from Congress, including the directors of the National Science Foundation, NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, say the research is essential for understanding the changes that will affect the world’s population and economies for more than a century.

 You know what’s coming. Wait for it…

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Scientists Try Radical Move To Save Bull Trout From A Warming Climate

Scientists Try Radical Move To Save Bull Trout From A Warming Climate

OCTOBER 08, 2015 4:49 PM ET
Bull trout are running out of time in Montana as their traditional waters heat up, biologists say. By moving more than 100 fish to higher elevations, fisheries scientists hope to save the species by seeding a new population in waters that will stay cooler longer.

Bull trout are running out of time in Montana as their traditional waters heat up, biologists say. By moving more than 100 fish to higher elevations, fisheries scientists hope to save the species by seeding a new population in waters that will stay cooler longer.

Something unusual is happening in America’s wilderness — some animals and plants are moving away from their native habitats. The reason is a warming climate. It’s getting too hot where they live.

Species that can’t migrate may perish, so some biologists say we need to move them. But they admit that’s a roll of the dice that violates a basic rule of conservation: If you want to keep the natural world “natural,” you don’t want to move plants and animals around willy-nilly.

Why not? Well, Europeans introduced rabbits to Australia for food and hunting in the 18th and 19th centuries and the rabbits overran the place. Residents of the Great Lakes are up to their eyeballs in invasive zebra mussels. People brought wild pigs to Hawaii, and the animals have destroyed much of the rain forest there.

But a few years ago, some biologists argued that the planet is warming faster than many plants and animals can handle. Maybe, they wondered, we should take a risk and move some of them.

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When Denial Attacks: Ted Cruz vs. Reality

When Denial Attacks: Ted Cruz vs. Reality

Ted Cruz
Is it hot in there, or is it just the entire freaking planet?

Photo by Ted Cruz, from the video

It’s like GOP presidential hopeful and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz stepped right out of George Orwell’s 1984.

Phil PlaitPHIL PLAIT

Phil Plait writes Slate’s Bad Astronomy blog and is an astronomer, public speaker, science evangelizer, and author of Death From the Skies!

On Tuesday he was on a Senate subcommittee hearing about government regulation. Among the people giving testimony was the president of the Sierra Club, Aaron Mair. I’m a fan of the Sierra Club; my wife and I have donated to them many times over the years.

Toward the end of the hearing, Cruz started grilling Mair on one part of his testimony, where Mair said, “That people of color and low-income communities are disproportionately impacted by pollution, and climate disruption should not be up for debate any more so than the science behind climate change itself.”

That, of course, set Cruz off. In a typical denier fashion, he lights into Mair about this, starting off with this:

I’m curious: Is the Sierra Club, is this a frequent practice to declare areas of science not up for debate, not up for consideration of what the evidence and data show?

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Could A Mushroom Save The Honeybee?

Could A Mushroom Save The Honeybee?

OCTOBER 09, 201510:46 AM ET

from ERTHFX

A honeybee is seen on the countertop of entomologist Steve Sheppard's lab at Washington State University. Sheppard is studying whether he can boost honeybees' immunity using liquid extracted from wood-rotting mushrooms.

A honeybee is seen on the countertop of entomologist Steve Sheppard’s lab at Washington State University. Sheppard is studying whether he can boost honeybees’ immunity using liquid extracted from wood-rotting mushrooms.

Ken Christensen/Courtesy of EarthFix/KCTS 9

Honeybees need a healthy diet of pollen, nectar and water. But at a bee laboratory in eastern Washington state, Steve Sheppard fills their feeding tubes with murky brown liquid from the forest.

His bees are getting a healthy dose of mushroom juice.

“If this does what we hope, it will be truly revolutionary,” says Sheppard, who heads the Department of Entomology at Washington State University. “Beekeepers are running out of options.”

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