Monday, September 24, 2007

The Climate Criminals

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPPC) Fourth Assessment Report (2007) warns of the following disasters this century if mankind does not respond urgently to anthropogenic climate change: possible temperature increases of up to 4 degrees Centigrade, sea level rises of up to 0.6 metres, massive damage to agriculture and serious threat to huge populations, especially in Asia and Africa. Further, the IPCC warns that “anthropogenic warming and sea level rise would continue for centuries due to the timescales associated with climate processes and feedbacks, even if greenhouse gas concentrations were to be stabilized” (IPCC, Climate Change 2007: the physical science basis. Summary for policy makers: ).

Now a recent scientific paper by top American climate change experts, NASA’s Dr James Hansen and colleagues, and published by the prestigious UK Royal Society, says that the IPCC warnings are actually UNDER-estimated and warns of an impending “cataclysm”. Dr Hansen and colleagues conclude: “Palaeoclimate data show that the Earth's climate is remarkably sensitive to global forcings. Positive feedbacks predominate. This allows the entire planet to be whipsawed between climate states. One feedback, the 'albedo flip' property of ice/water, provides a powerful trigger mechanism. A climate forcing that 'flips' the albedo [light reflection capacity] of a sufficient portion of an ice sheet can spark a cataclysm. Inertia of ice sheet and ocean provides only moderate delay to ice sheet disintegration and a burst of added global warming. Recent greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions place the Earth perilously close to dramatic climate change that could run out of our control, with great dangers for humans and other creatures. Carbon dioxide (CO2) is the largest human-made climate forcing, but other trace constituents are also important. Only intense simultaneous efforts to slow CO2 emissions and reduce non-CO2 forcings can keep climate within or near the range of the past million years” (Dr James Hansen et al, Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society, vol. 365, 1925-1954 (2007), “Climate change and trace gases”:
ontent/l3h462k7p4068780/fulltext.html ).

Professor James Lovelock FRS goes even further. In his recent book “The Revenge of Gaia” (London, 2006) Dr Lovelock says that it may already be too late, that the control systems regulating the global temperature may be too severely damaged already. A gloomy summation of Dr Lovelock’s position by Commondreams.( ) is blunt: “Environment in crisis: “We are beyond the point of no return’”.

Urgent global action is demanded by the IPCC, the US National Academy of Science, the UK Royal Society, former World Bank Chief Economists Sir Nicholas Stern (UK) and Economics Nobel Laureate Professor Joseph Stiglitz (US) and an overwhelming international scientific consensus. Thus Sir Nicholas Stern believes that urgent action now will enable stabilization of the Earth’s atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) to about 500 ppm (parts per million) and that acting NOW will be far cheaper economically than leaving it till later (see: The Stern Review: the economics of climate change (2006):
shared/bsp/hi/pdfs/30_10_06_exec_sum.pdf ). Professor Stiglitz has stated that Sir Nicholas Stern’s position is actually conservative.

Indeed in “The Revenge of Gaia” Professor Lovelock states that at 500 ppm CO2 the Greenland ice shelf goes and so does the ocean phytoplankton system that is vital for global temperature homeostasis (balance) through sequestering CO2 and generating dimethyl sulphide (that helps nucleate the formation of sunlight-reflecting clouds).

Recent summaries by the prestigious New Scientist shows that the atmospheric CO2 concentration is currently about 380 ppm (parts per million) but is increasing at a rate (3.3% per year) corresponding to the WORST scenario envisaged by the IPCC i.e. of unaddressed carbon pollution (
-carbon-emissions-rising-faster-than-ever.html ).

However the US Bush Administration and the pro-Bush Australian Federal Government refuse to sign the Kyoto Protocol or to constrain CO2 pollution as revealed by the following statistics for “annual per capita fossil fuel-derived CO2 pollution” (tonnes CO2 per person per year) (2004): 19.2 (for AUSTRALIA; 40 if you include Australia’s “world’s biggest” coal exports), 19.7 (the US), 18.4 (Canada), 16.4 (Netherlands), 11.9 (Russia), 10.4 (Germany), 9.9 (Japan), 9.7 (UK), 8.5 (Italy), 6.7 (France), 4.2 (the World), 3.6 (China), 3.6 (Argentina), 2.0 (Egypt), 1.8 (Brazil), 1.0 (India), 0.7 (Pakistan), 0.7 (Nigeria), and 0.25 (for Bangladesh) (US Energy Information Administration (2006):
Notes%20for%20Table%20H_1co2.html ).

The major climate criminals are clearly the Western countries with the HIGHEST annual per capita fossil fuel-derived CO2 pollution, most notably the stand-out Kyoto Protocol NON-signatories Bush America (the world’s worst greenhouse gas polluter) and Bush-ite Australia (the world’s biggest coal exporter and the world’s big country with the world’s highest “annual capita greenhouse gas pollution” if coal exports are included ) (see the World Bank report:
64199955-1178226923002/21322619/LGDB2007.pdf and and
about_greenhouse_gases/australia's_emissions.html ).

In contrast, the major “climate victim” countries threatened by climate criminal-impelled global warming, drought and inundation through sea level rises (climate genocide) are African, South American and Asian countries with major river delta systems and with “annual per capita fossil fuel-derived CO2 pollution” (tonnes CO2 per person per year) (2004) BELOW that of the World (4.2), notably China (3.6), Argentina (3.6), Egypt (2.0), Brazil (1.8), India (1.0), Pakistan (0.7), Nigeria (0.7) and Bangladesh (0.25).

What can decent and responsible people do?

We cannot ignore this mounting threat to humanity – we cannot walk by on the other side. Already, in 2006 a Bengali island, Lohachara Island, once home to 10,000 of our fellow human beings, finally disappeared under the waves. We are obliged to (a) inform others about gross abuses of humanity and (b) to take peaceful action against those complicit in such atrocities. Sanctions and boycotts worked against the racist atrocity of Apartheid South Africa and may well help constrain the implicitly racist atrocity of climate genocide being foisted on the world by climate criminal Bush America and Bush-ite Australia.

It has recently been estimated that the ACTUAL price of coal-based electricity (taking into account the environmental and human cost) can be about 4 times higher than the present commercial cost. However this Canadian estimate was conservative and may have UNDER-estimated the additional environmental cost due to climate change by a factor of TEN (10) (see: ). Nevertheless this ACTUAL COST estimate indicates that a number of renewable options (notably wind power and concentrated solar power, CSP) are ALREADY competitive on current costings with the TRUE cost of coal-based electricity i.e. for economic reasons the coal should stay in the ground. Those greedy, corrupt, intrinsically racist climate criminals (climate terrorists) that IGNORE the science, the technology and economics and remain committed to fossil fuel-based energy to the cost of Humanity will eventually get the BILL for the full COST of their racist irresponsibility and the consequent climate genocide.

However the Western world is dominated by lying, racist, Bush-ite media who are still giving the climate criminals a free run to pollute the planet at the expense of the Developing World. The WORDS of the world’s most eminent scientists, technologists and economists are FAILING under the weight of corporate Mainstream media lies and spin.

Both water-deficient and river delta (deltaic) regions around the world (notably those of South Asia e.g. India, Bangladesh and Pakistan) are acutely threatened by global warming. Already about 16 million people die avoidably around the world each year (3.7 million in India alone) (see: “Body Count. Global avoidable mortality since 1950” (G.M. Polya, Melbourne, 2007): ). Please inform all your associates and please feel free to reproduce “TERRA” and its attendant message with attribution in the interests of our Planet and Humanity.


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