06 May 2012

Climate media

Week ending 6 May 2012
Heartland Institute Compares Climate Science Believers And Reporters To Mass ‘Murderers And Madmen
Heartland site archived here: http://www.webcitation.org/67PXtDuFE
What Heartland said: “We know that our billboard angered and disappointed many of Heartland’s friends and supporters, but we hope they understand what we were trying to do with this experiment. We do not apologize for running the ad, and we will continue to experiment with ways to communicate the ‘realist’ message on the climate.


Global Warming: New Research Blames Economic Growth
ScienceDaily, May 1, 2012
It's a message no one wants to hear: To slow down global warming, we'll either have to put the brakes on economic growth or transform the way the world's economies work. That's the implication of an innovative University of Michigan study examining the most likely causes of global warming.

Scientists: Extinctions Just as Damaging as Climate Change
Julia Whitty, Mother Jones, May 2, 2012
A new paper in the prestigious science journal Nature assesses one of the big questions in ecology today: How do species extinctions rack up compared to other global change issues like global warming, ozone holes, acid rain, and nutrient pollution (overfertilization)?

The climate for Labor backflips
David Spratt, Climate Spectator, 3 May 2012
This year the federal government has been very quiet about climate change. Climate Change Minister Greg Combet’s most recent media release on climate was on 23 March.That his statement was devoted to the coalition’s policy, not Labor’s, is indicative of the strategic failure that has beset Labor’s climate communications since 2008.

Coal or wind – which would you pick?
Michael Power, Climate Spectator, 30 April 2012
If you’re going to ‘pick winners’ from the energy market, you at least want to choose wisely. So it’s hard to see why Victorian laws treat coal and coal seam gas more favourably than renewable energy.

Bill McKibben, The Most Important Story of Our Lives
Bill McKibben, TomDispatch, 3 May 2012
Climate change is actually the biggest thing that’s going on every single day.  If we could only see that pattern we’d have a fighting chance


Why Fighting Coal Export Terminals Matters
David Roberts, Grist, 2 May 2012
As I wrote in my last post — and have been writing for years — coal is on the decline in the U.S. The biggest driver of this trend is the current low cost of natural gas from fracking, but it also has to do with increasing competition from renewables, the aging of the U.S. coal fleet, organized grassroots opposition, new EPA regulations, and slowing demand for electricity
Another coal export record for Newcastle

Lung cancer alarm near coal-fired power stations
ABC News, 3 May 2012
A new analysis of pollution data for the Port Augusta region contradicts reassurances from the South Australian Government that smoking can be blamed for high lung cancer rates.

Will Natural Gas Fuel America in the 21st Century?
David Hughes, Post-carbon Institute, May 2011
In this groundbreaking report, geoscientist David Hughes (formerly of Geological Survey of Canada) shatters the myth that U.S. natural gas can be a "bridge fuel" from high-carbon sources of energy like coal and oil to a renewable energy future

Gillard's clash with coal power tricks
Mark Wakeham, Climate Spectator, 3 May 2012
With the clock ticking towards the federal government’s June 30 deadline for contracts for closure, the brinkmanship is beginning in earnest.

Scientist Debunks ‘Misleading’ Coverage Of Wind Farm Study
Shauna Theel, Media Matters, 1 May 2012
A recent study of satellite data found that nighttime land temperatures in the immediate vicinity of wind turbines in Texas have increased relative to nearby areas without turbines.

New solar reality: Busting myths and burying fossils
Adam James, Climate Progress, 3 May 2012
The myth is that solar energy has achieved little despite huge subsidies. The reality is that solar has achieved a great deal despite relatively low subsidies.

Protesters fear environmental effects of CSG
ABC News, 1 May 2012
Thousand people demonstrated outside New South Wales Parliament House today in Sydney. They want greater protection and regulation against mining and coal seam gas operators who the protesters say are seriously threatening the water table and agricultural land.
Independent Analysis Confirms That Hydraulic Fracturing Caused Drinking Water Contamination In Wyoming

Three charts that show why solar has hit a true tipping point
Stephen Lacey, Climate Progress, 1 May 2012
A new report from the prominent global consulting firm McKinsey shows why solar photovoltaics have hit a tipping point.

Annie Kia speaking at launch of CSG Free Community Strategy
Full speech from Annie Kia, the organiser behind the CSG Free Community Strategy, at the Channon, northern NSW, Australia on 14 April 2012.

For Miners, Coal Is No Longer Hot
Matt Day, WSJ, 29 April 2012
It's been a bleak spring for U.S. coal miners—and the question for Arch Coal Inc. and Alpha Natural Resources Inc. is whether they can even meet lowered expectations.


Climate Change Is Not A ‘Message.’ It’s An Objective Reality And An Urgent Crisis. That’s Why We Must Talk About It.
KC Golden, via Climate Access, 2 May 2012
Have climate campaigners learned the art of political communication too well?  We poll and focus group.  We segment audiences and target swings. We “go to people where they’re at” – activating live communication frames and salient issues. We move the dial. There is tactical merit in all this … but climate change is not a “message.” It’s an objective reality and an urgent crisis.

A Greener Shade of Blue? Communicating Climate Change on the Right
This debate will consider whether there is a genuine problem with climate action on the right of politics and how those who care about the environment might be better able to persuade doubters of the need for policy intervention.

Nation now 'indifferent' to environment
Ben Cubby, SMH, 30 April 2012
Concern for the environment has dwindled into a ''middling'' issue that many people do not have strong feelings about, a major study into Australian attitudes towards society, politics and the economy has found.

Job blues put our minds to work
Melissa Davey, The Age, May 5, 2012
Workplace concerns trump broader issues such as war, the environment and politics when it comes to what Australians worry about most.

Gauging Public Opinion on Climate Change Policy
NPR, May 4, 2012
Majorities of Americans say that global warming and clean energy should be among the nation's priorities, according to a new survey. Will those feelings translate into any action in the government? Anthony Leiserowitz of the Yale Project on Climate Change Communication discusses the survey's findings.


ABC documentary demonstrates the how and why of climate denial

Putting action into Direct Action
Tristan Edis, Climate Spectator, 1 May 2012
As explained in the article From Direct Action to Abbott’s Gospel Truth (April 24), the clean energy sector must convert the Coalition’s Direct Action policy into some more detailed and unambiguous “gospel truth” commitments before the next election. Without further detail nailed down about this policy, it runs the risk of going the way of other grant  tendering schemes that made for impressive press releases and precious little else.

Nations fail scorecard for reducing global warming
Brad Plumer, The Age, May 1, 2012
Each year, the International Energy Agency puts out a study of which technological advances are needed to keep global warming below 2 degrees. This year's report is out and the grades are dismal: Aside from a boom in wind and solar power, the world isn't making much progress.

Nature Is Not A Commodity: The Path to Rio+20
David Korten, Alternet,  April 26, 2012
With these three words, Karma Tshiteem, Secretary of the Bhutan Gross National Happiness Commission, ended his brief description of Bhutan’s distinctive approach to economic development. It caught my attention because of the striking contrast to our common Western phrase, “Time is money.”

Dump carbon tax, Keneally tells PM
ABC News, 1 May 2012
Former NSW premier Kristina Keneally says PM Julia Gillard should dump the carbon tax or seriously consider dialling it back in an effort to fix Labor's woes.
The Gillard factor makes Labor a pariah


More flood warnings after wettest April
AFP, 2 May 2012
Parts of Britain were on "high alert" for floods again Tuesday after a night of torrential downpours as Met Office figures showed April was the wettest on record.

Sea-level rise: towards understanding local vulnerability
ERW, 26 April 2012
Projections of global sea-level rise into the future have become more pessimistic over the past five years or so. A global rise by more than one metre by the year 2100 is now widely accepted as a serious possibility if greenhouse gas emissions continue unabated.

Need To Know  Rising tide (video)
The city of Norfolk, Virginia is grappling with massive flooding caused by sea-level
Regional Sea-Level Projection
Modeling Ice-Sheet Flow
BOTH PAPERS available here:

Study: ‘Virtually’ Certain Impact Of Manmade ‘Climate Change Is Observable In Arctic Sea Ice Already Today’
Joe Romm, Climate Progress,  May 5, 2012
The ongoing rapid retreat of Arctic sea ice is often interpreted as the canary in the mine for anthropogenic climate change. In a new study, scientists have now systematically examined the validity of this claim.

Weird Winter - Mad March
Part 1
Part 2
Scientists have been examining the problem of extreme weather intensely over recent years, as Europe, America, and Asia have all been subject to wave after wave of record breaking weather events. Now the picture is coming into focus.

Eating Less Meat Is World's Best Chance For Timely Climate Change, Say Experts
Michelle Maisto, Forbes, 28 April 2012Shifting the world’s reliance on fossil fuels to renewable energy sources is important, certainly. But the world’s best chance for achieving timely, disaster-averting climate change may actually be a vegetarian diet eating less meat, according to a recent report in World Watch Magazine.

Ice is Flowing Slower on Greenland than Many Feared
Michael D. Lemonick, Climate Central, 3 May 212
News is not all that good for sea level rise. Greenland is the 800-pound gorilla of sea-level rise. The world’s biggest island holds 680,000 cubic miles of ice, and if it all melted, the oceans would rise by more than 20 feet.