Guest commentary from Drew Shindell There has been a lot of discussion of my recent paper in Nature Climate Change (Shindell, 2014). That study addressed a puzzle, namely that recent studies using the observed changes in Earth’s surface temperature suggested climate sensitivity is likely towards the lower end of the estimated range. However, studies evaluating model performance on key observed processes and paleoclimate evidence suggest that the higher end of sensitivity is more likely, partially conflicting with the studies based on the recent transient observed warming. The new study shows that climate sensitivity to historical changes in the abundance of aerosol particles in the atmosphere is larger than the sensitivity to CO2, primarily because the aerosols are largely located near industrialized areas in the Northern Hemisphere middle and high latitudes where they trigger more rapid land responses and strong snow & ice feedbacks.
Victory at Hand for the Climate Movement?There are signs the climate movement could be on the verge of a remarkable and surprising victory. If we read the current context correctly, and if the movement can adjust its strategy to capture the opportunity presented, it could usher in the fastest and most dramatic economic transformation in history. This would include the removal of the oil, coal and gas industries from the economy in just a few decades and their replacement with new industries and, for the most part, entirely new companies.Unburnable carbon 2013: Wasted capital and stranded assetsThis new research from Carbon Tracker and the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment at LSE calls for regulators, governments and investors to re-evaluate energy business models against carbon budgets, to prevent $6trillion carbon bubble in the next decade. Unburnable carbon 2013: Wasted capital and stranded assets has revealed that fossil fuel reserves already far exceed the carbon budget to avoid global warming of 2°C, but in spite of this, spent $674billion last year to find and develop new potentially stranded assets. “Smart investors can see that investing in companies that rely solely or heavily on constantly replenishing reserves of fossil fuels is becoming a very risky decision.
In the 70s, they said there'd be an Ice AgeClimate LiteracyAbout Teaching Climate Literacy Climate information can be used to reduce vulnerabilities or enhance the resilience of communities and ecosystems affected by climate change. Continuing to improve scientific understanding of the climate system and the quality of reports to policy and decision-makers is crucial. About Teaching the Guiding Principle Other materials addressing GPa
Australia's carbon bubbleThe Australian Coal Association recently hired some consultants (ITS Global) to review the carbon bubble thesis. For clarification, here are our corrections and responses to their output. The two degree commitment Our reports use this as a reference point, as it is indeed the stated objective of the international community. We respect the right of companies, investors and other parties to take a view on how likely this outcome may be.
Vote Compass: What Australians think about the big political issuesUpdated Mon 11 Nov 2013, 1:23pm AEDT The ABC's Vote Compass policy tool received more than 1.4 million responses during the 2013 federal election campaign. We've now crunched the enormous final dataset, weighted it against Census information and are releasing the full data so you can find out who thinks what about the key political issues facing Australia.How a Professional Climate Change Denier Discovered the Lies and Decided to Fight for ScienceThe hardest part of reversing the warming of the planet may be convincing climate change skeptics of the need to do so. Although scientists who study the issue overwhelming agree that the earth is undergoing rapid and profound climate changes due to the burning of fossil fuels, a minority of the public remains stubbornly resistant to that fact. With temperatures rising and ice caps melting — and that small minority in control of both Congress and the White House — there seems no project more urgent than persuading climate deniers to reconsider their views.
Global-Warming Denial Hits a 6-Year HighFox News on the morning of September 27, 2013, covering the new IPPC report on climate change.Media Matters/Fox News The latest data is out on the prevalence of global warming denial among the US public. And it isn't pretty. The new study, from the Yale and George Mason University research teams on climate change communication, shows a 7-percentage-point increase in the proportion of Americans who say they do not believe that global warming is happening. And that's just since the spring of 2013.UK Polling ReportI like data from tracking polls. There is often no “correct” way of asking about a subject and answers can come down to how you word a question, but if you ask a question in the same way over a long period of time then – all things being equal – any significant change you see should reflect a genuine change in public opinion. For that reason I am always very loathe to change the wording of tracking questions, as you are throwing away all that past data and any change you see is as likely to be due to different wording as it is to changing opinion. However, there comes a time when the vocabulary used in the public debate changes, and the wording you’ve used in the past really isn’t the wording you’d use if designing a question today. In past years YouGov has asked about public opinion towards climate change using this question:
Reddit’s science forum banned climate deniers. Why don’t all newspapers do the same?In addition to my career as a PhD chemist, I am one of a select few who enjoy the privilege of moderating content on reddit.com’s science forum. The science forum is a small part of reddit, but it nonetheless enjoys over 4 million subscribers. By comparison, that’s roughly twice the circulation of The New York Times.