Top lawmaker rebutted on climate study accusation

Federal Eye
Top lawmaker rebutted on climate study accusation

By Lisa Rein November 23 at 7:00 AM

An image obtained on Nov. 16 from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) shows the satellite sea surface temperature departure for the month of October 2015, where orange-red colors are above normal temperatures and are indicative of El Nino. (NOAA via Agence France-Presse)

The escalating struggle between an influential House Republican and government scientists over their pivotal study of global warming now turns on accusations that they rushed to publish their findings to advance President Obama’s agenda on climate change.

But a spokeswoman for Science, the prestigious peer-reviewed journal that in June published the paper by climate scientists at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, said in an interview that their research was subject to a longer, more intensive review than is customary.

“This paper went through as rigorous a review as it could have received,” said Ginger Pinholster, chief of communications for the American Association for the Advancement of Science, which publishes Science. “Any suggestion that the review was ‘rushed’ is baseless and without merit.” Continue reading “Top lawmaker rebutted on climate study accusation”

First EPA chief accuses Republicans of ignoring science for political gain

First EPA chief accuses Republicans of ignoring science for political gain

William Ruckelshaus, who this week will receive the presidential medal of freedom, says candidates are harming US’s reputation ahead of Paris climate talks
William RuckelshausWilliam Ruckelshaus

William Ruckelshaus, the first administrator of the EPA, in 2009 at his office in Seattle. Photograph: Ted S Warren/AP

Oliver Milman in New York

Monday 23 November 2015 07.00 EST
Last modified on Monday 23 November 2015 07.56 EST

The man considered the father figure of environmental protection in the US has attacked Republicans for “going through all the stages of denial” over climate change, accusing leading presidential contenders Donald Trump and Marco Rubio of ignoring science for political gain.

William Ruckelshaus, who on Tuesday is to receive the nation’s highest civilian honor, the presidential medal of freedom, told the Guardian that leading Republicans are harming the US’s reputation by attempting to stymie efforts to tackle climate change. Continue reading “First EPA chief accuses Republicans of ignoring science for political gain”

Major countries restrict financing for coal plants

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Members of the 34-nation Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) agreed Tuesday to limit public funds for exporting coal-fired power plants and equipment.

The agreement came after months of negotiations, as countries like South Korea and Australia pushed for looser rules that would allow more financing.

In the United States, the new guidelines, long sought by President Obama, mean that the Export-Import Bank will be severely limited in how it lends money to foreign countries and companies to buy coal technology.Export-Import’s authorization has expired, so the rules would only apply if Congress renews it, as it is moving to do.

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Senate votes to strike down Obama’s climate rules

Senate votes to strike down Obama’s climate rules

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The Senate voted Tuesday to block a pair of regulations representing the central pillars of President Obama’s climate change initiative.

The votes approving resolutions under the Congressional Review Act come less than two weeks before Obama and other world leaders meet in Paris to agree to a worldwide pact to fight global warming.

The votes are symbolic, since Obama would veto the resolutions and supporters do not have the two-thirds majority needed in both chambers to override the vetoes.

Senators voted 52-46 to stop the carbon dioxide limits for existing power plants, which mandate a 32 percent cut in the power sector’s carbon by 2030. The to block the related carbon rule for newly built power plants pass by the same vote.

Continue reading “Senate votes to strike down Obama’s climate rules”

‘High impacts’ from globally stronger El Nino

‘High impacts’ from globally stronger El Nino


The El Niño weather event is expected to gain in strength before the end of this year, according to the World Meteorological Organization (WMO).

In its latest update, the WMO says the 2015 occurrence will be among the three strongest recorded since 1950.

Severe droughts and significant flooding in many parts of the world are being attributed to this El Niño.

The WMO warn these impacts are likely to increase and this event is now in “uncharted territory”.

El Niño is a naturally occurring weather episode that sees the warm waters of the central Pacific expand eastwards towards North and South America. Continue reading “‘High impacts’ from globally stronger El Nino”

Rising Sea Levels Threaten Tiny Islands Home To Indigenous Panamanians

November 12, 2015 4:24 PM ET

Sea rise is threatening the way of life for a Panamanian indigenous group that lives on islands off the Caribbean coast. They’re now pondering moving back to the mainland and abandoning their way of life.


A hundred-and-fifty years ago, the Guna people of Panama left the mainland to escape deadly mosquitoes that carried malaria. They ended up in low-lying islands in the Caribbean. But now rising sea levels are forcing the Guna people to go back to the mainland, and that is changing the way they live. Jacob McCleland of member station KGOU reports.

JACOB MCCLELAND, BYLINE: Jaime Avila zooms his motorboat over clear blue Caribbean water and tosses a baited hook overboard. Avila, like many indigenous Gunas who live off of Panama’s Northeastern coast, used to fish every day. Now instead of fishing, he mostly shuttles tourists from island to island. But the water is now the enemy.

Continue reading “Rising Sea Levels Threaten Tiny Islands Home To Indigenous Panamanians”

Society ‘set for climate change woe’

Society ‘set for climate change woe’

 Flooding in Jakarta
Image copyright AFP

Human societies will soon start to experience adverse effects from manmade climate change, a prominent economist has warned.

Prof Richard Tol predicts the downsides of warming will outweigh the advantages with a global warming of 1.1C – which has nearly been reached already.

Prof Tol is regarded by many campaigners as a climate “sceptic”.

He has previously highlighted the positive effects of CO2 in fertilising crops and forests.

His work is widely cited by climate contrarians.

“Most people would argue that slight warming is probably beneficial for human welfare on net, if you measure it in dollars, but more pronounced warming is probably a net negative,” Prof Tol told the BBC Radio 4 series Changing Climate. Continue reading “Society ‘set for climate change woe’”

Impacts on Oceans Need Urgent Attention in Climate Talks, Researchers Say

Published on InsideClimate News (

Impacts on Oceans Need Urgent Attention in Climate Talks, Researchers Say

A series of studies highlighting the impact of global warming on the oceans also urges climate negotiators to appreciate their huge role.

By Phil McKenna, InsideClimate News

Nov 12, 2015


Oceans are often overlooked in climate talks, researchers say. Credit: Wikipedia [1]

Warming waters, rising sea levels, ocean acidification and changing water currents caused by climate change are having devastating effects on marine environments, scientists say.

But despite these effects, which researchers say will intensify and spread inland as the planet warms, oceans have not been a focus of international climate negotiations. The authors of a set of five studies on oceans and climate change in a special issue of the journal Science published Thursday hope to change that.

“The dynamics of the ocean really are key to understanding how well we are going to be able to adapt to future climate change,” said William Sydeman of the Farallon Institute for Advanced Ecosystem Research and lead author of one of five papers. “Up until the last [Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change] assessment report, the oceans really have been largely neglected from the standpoint of impacts.” Continue reading “Impacts on Oceans Need Urgent Attention in Climate Talks, Researchers Say”

Climate Scientist Michael Mann: Exxon Story ‘Confirmed Things We Long Suspected’

Climate Scientist Michael Mann: Exxon Story ‘Confirmed Things We Long Suspected

In this interview, Mann, a key figure in the climate wars, reacts to the recent revelations about what Exxon knew about global warming science.

Nov 13, 2015

Michael Mann, long a target of climate denialist campaigns, says it makes him “angry” that Exxon “would knowingly risk the degradation of our planet for future generations in the name of their own short-term profits.” Credit: Greg Grieco/Wikimedia Commons

Climate scientist Michael Mann has spent much of his career in the crosshairs of climate denialists. A professor of meteorology and director of the Earth System Science Center at Pennsylvania State University, Mann is best known for helping to develop the famous “hockey stick” graph, which reconstructed 1,000 years of global temperature data and showed the abrupt warming of the late 20th century.

Mann, who studied theoretical physics before taking up climate research, published the paper explaining the hocky stick graph in 1999, just three years after he completed his Ph.D.

The graph drew widespread public attention, especially after it appeared in the 2001 Third Assessment Report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Mann soon became a target of climate contrarians and the institutions that support them, including those funded by ExxonMobil. He has received death threats, been accused of scientific fraud by people who don’t accept climate science and targeted by politicians.

Continue reading “Climate Scientist Michael Mann: Exxon Story ‘Confirmed Things We Long Suspected’”

House Republicans Plan to Call for Action on Climate Change

House Republicans Plan to Call for Action on Climate Change

Rep. Chris Gibson of New York is leading the charge, and nine other Republicans are on board.

September 15, 2015

A co­ali­tion of House Re­pub­lic­ans is gear­ing up to make waves by call­ing for ac­tion to fight cli­mate change on the eve of Pope Fran­cis’s vis­it to Cap­it­ol Hill.

Ten Re­pub­lic­ans have so far signed onto a res­ol­u­tion af­firm­ing that hu­man activ­ity con­trib­utes to cli­mate change and en­dors­ing ac­tion to re­spond to the threat of Earth’s chan­ging cli­mate. The res­ol­u­tion is ex­pec­ted to be un­veiled as early as Thursday.

Rep. Chris Gib­son, a New York Re­pub­lic­an, led the charge in craft­ing the res­ol­u­tion and con­vin­cing oth­er Re­pub­lic­ans to speak out in sup­port. “This is a call for ac­tion to study how hu­mans are im­pact­ing our en­vir­on­ment and to look for con­sensus on areas where we can take ac­tion to mit­ig­ate the risks and bal­ance our im­pacts,” Gib­son told Na­tion­al Journ­al. Continue reading “House Republicans Plan to Call for Action on Climate Change”