Bali: Gambling the Present for an Unknown Future

Very wise words about the results of the Bali “climate deals” in December 2007, from Dr. Sonia Boehmer-Christiansen (University of Hull, UK), editor of the journal “Energy and Environment“:

What the Bali agreements (i.e. a small adaptation fund, more CDM projects/policies, more negotiations on targets and timetables; technology transfer) are likely to mean for international efforts is simple to predict for a long-time observer. Great rhetorical efforts will continue with little effective actionother [than] more centralization of state power – in most countries […]

many agendas and several regions are likely to benefit from developments of less carbon intensive economies and lifestyles. The political consequences of such attempted developments may nevertheless be disastrous where economic growth or prosperity is undermined […]

Food, water, education and health are already more urgent ‘real’ global problems than climatic changes. Our primary (and more arduous) responsibility therefore is to current generations, though politics favors the future. People alive today are expected to pay for the implementation of an agenda too little concerned with conflict resolution but based on fear derived from computer model predictions generated and used by institutions that cannot be absolved of political motivations, however honorable.

For scientific reasons, all climate change policymakers and activists might familiarize themselves with the many voices – admittedly not proclaiming consensus – that are critical of the IPCC ‘scientific consensus’. More efforts needs to be devoted to observing climatic reality, understanding climate and only then, perhaps, on preparing for adaptation to real change. In the meantime, there are enough real problems to solve.

The above is from the Roundtable Forum “Tackling Climate Change” at IA-forum.org.

Spiked Online's Christmas All-Out Attack on AGW

(a) “Al Gore: enviro-tyrant” by Brendan O’Neill (Dec 18)
After Bali: In aspiring to ‘control the destiny of all generations to come’, Gore has unwittingly unveiled his anti-democratic streak

As he flies around the world to tell people that they should fly less, or organises rock-star extravaganzas to tell the masses they should live more meekly, some sceptics have asked: ‘Who the hell does Al Gore think he is?

(b) “Eco-imperialism at the Bali summit?” by James Heartfield (Dec 18) 
After Bali: Are Western powers offsetting their industrial growth by blackmailing poorer countries to foreswear development? One writer thinks so

More than most scientific questions, the state of the environment has been deeply mixed up with international rivalries. In fact, some nations seem to have politicised environmental claims as a weapon in their economic competition. CO2 emissions mirror industrial output. The agreement in Bali to limit CO2 emissions looks to me like an attempt by the Great Powers to regulate industrial competition.

(c) “Hairshirt posturing vs everyday reality” by Robert Lyons (Dec 18)
After Bali: It ended in stalemate because while everyone poses as an opponent of CO2-emitting technologies, the fact is humanity needs them.

‘It was exactly what we wanted, we are indeed very pleased. We will have now two tremendously demanding years, starting right in January.’ So said the European Union’s chief negotiator Humberto Rosa following the outline agreement forged at the UN climate change talks in Bali last weekend. But it seems quite clear that, on the substantive issues under negotiation, everyone simply agreed to disagree.

(d) “Return of the Skeptical Environmentalist” by Tony Gilland (Review, Dec 2007)
In his new book Cool It, Bjørn Lomborg shows how ‘the science’ on global warming – covering everything from polar bear extinction to the disappearance of Greenland – has been distorted and politicised

(e) “Who’s afraid of…Greenland melting?” by Rob Lyons (Dec 13) 
Rob Lyons says we should keep cool about the ongoing scare story of Greenland’s melting ice.

Shame in Bali (Beware of the Gents!)

The UN Conference on climate change in a luxury resort in sunny Bali is likely to go down in history as the biggest waste of public money this side of Nero’s rebuilding of Ancient Rome. The idea that the only way to get less CO2 in the atmosphere is to organize the biggest event in UN history is beyond belief.

Anyway, as usual in everything called global warming, numbers simply never add up:

(1) the Sunday Times estimates 15,000 people, TV crews included

(2) Voice of America opts for 20,000, without the TV crews

(3) AP talks of more than 10,000 delegates, celebrities included

(4) Radio Australia says 5,000 police officers will be there, an extraordinary amount that will generate several tonnes of CO2 by itself (also, I didn’t think UN meetings could get rowdy?)

In truth, if anybody can manage to get anything meaningful out of 10,000/15,000/ 20,000 people in two weeks, either all those are there just to rubber-stamp something already prepared, or the Nobel Peace Prize has been awarded to the wrong UN group

In any case…they better watch out when using the gentlemen’s lavatories

Vergogna a Bali

Comincia domenica la conferenza per il dopo-Kyoto, e dura 12 giorni. Che sia fatta a Bali a Dicembre (temperatura:fra 23 e 33C. Nuvoloso, qualche probabilita’ di pioggia), la dice lunga sulle priorita’ dei conferenzieri.

E’ una vera vergogna: per chi non crede al Cambiamento Climatico, perche’ sara’ uno sperpero immane di denaro “per niente”.

E per chi ci crede, perche’ a parte non dare alcun esempio su come caspita dovremmo affrontare questa emergenza, generera’ colossali e inutili quantita’ di CO2 visto che per ogni delegato ci saranno almeno tre giornalisti e altri “addetti”.

I problemi della scarsezza delle risorse saranno forse discussi ma certo non esperiti dagli astanti. Basta vedere cosa hanno combinato l’anno scorso, a Nairobi, questi “turisti climatici”.

Ban Ki-Moon, naturalmente, ci sara’. Si vede che Skype e le webcam all’ONU ancora non funzionano.