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Global Weirding News of the Week

It’s been a little more than a week since my last Global Weirding News of the Week update, but better late than never… This one is an especially long update, since a lot has been going on. Hope you find the news stories below interesting and useful.

North Carolina Got Its 2nd 500-Year Rainfall in 11 Years

A little more than a week ago, Climate Progress reported on North Carolina’s 2nd 500-year rainfall in 11 years. Strange, that is highly unlikely.. unless you consider that humans are causing accelerated global climate change and we are starting to see the effects of that.

September 2010 Hottest September on Record (Record Highs Compared to Record Lows = 5:1)

Think it was hot in September? Well, it was. It was apparently the hottest September in the RSS satellite record and there were five times as many daily high temperature records as daily low temperature records. (Note that even if it was the hottest September on record, there were still some low temperature records in some places… in case you happened to be in one of those places where it was colder than normal.)

How Warm Was Summer 2010?

A 6-page, chart-filled report [PDF] by leading climate scientist James Hansen via Columbia University answers that question in detail. The takeaway point is that it was record-breaking, disastrous as a result, and increasingly the norm.

Wegman-Gate

“Climategate” never really lived up to its name, since numerous independent studies have delved into the pseudo-scandal and found nothing to warrant that name. Wegman-gate, on the other hand, might be a good fit for describing the horrible, politically-driven Wegman Report. Meteorology professor Scott Mandia delved into this topic recently.

MIT Launches International Climate Change Agreement Contest

Before we get into all the negative news surrounding international climate negotiations, on a positive note, the MIT Sloan School of Management’s Climate CoLab has just launched a contest centered around the following question: What international climate agreements should the world community make? Looks like an interesting and potentially helpful contest. Thanks to Cindy Hoots on our sister site The Inspired Economist for covering this news.

Tianjin, China Climate Change Talks — Not Good News

We’ve got mostly bad news from the climate talks in Tianjin, China, the last climate talks before the big meeting in Cancun next month.

Developing nations have said that funding promised by rich nations in the Copenhagen talks has been slow to come in and may not even be “new” money at all.

US and China negotiations, probably the most important part of climate negotiations in the world, have also reportedly “hit a new low,” with both countries accusing the other of stalling these negotiations.

One solution to these problems that may soon be pursued instead of these international climate negotiations (if they continue to go like this) is developing countries could sue the US and other industrialized nations.

WWF: Global 2020 Emissions Expected to Far Exceed Dangerous Levels… but Not Too Late to Aim Higher

As if the problems at the Tianjin climate talks weren’t enough to put you down, the WWF has a new report out saying that global 2020 emissions are expected to far exceed dangerous levels… Great! Fortunately, the WWf saysit’s not too late, or too difficult, to aim a bit higher. That’s the upbeat conclusion of our new report, ‘Plugging the Gap: An easy guide to a safe climate future’.”

UK Conservative Sounds Like Climate Activist

On another site, Change.org, I wrote an article this last week on an excellent speech by a UK conservative leader that I would be thrilled to hear even a US liberal give, let alone a US conservative. I dig into the reasons things are so different in Europe in that piece and in one regarding the great disparities in renewable energy targets in Europe versus the US.

10/10/10 Global Work Party

Of course, it would be a crime not to mention today’s tremendous activist effort, the 10/10/10 Global Work Party, in this week’s global weirding update. Today looks like it was the biggest day of global political action in history. Amazing work by the 350.org crew and the thousands of people involved in thousands of events in nearly 200 countries.

Efforts by Virginia Attorney General Cuccinelli, the Foreign-Funded US Chamber of Commerce, and the Anti-Science Folks Pushing Prop 23 in California are Insidious

Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli recently tried to criminalize science, more or less. The Washington Post subsequently discussed the embarrassment Cuccinelli is to my old home state.

Leading climate scientist Michael Mann (one of the main people being attacked by Cuccinelli and his tribe) also responded with an article in The Washington Post, and excellent piece about the anti-science bent of these politicians.

Meanwhile, you are probably well aware of the ridiculous battle going on in California and the anti-science, anti-jobs Proposition 23. Levi Strauss recently dug into how Prop 23 would “turn back the clock” for business — nice to see a leading corporation step up and help address this issue.

And if you think anti-science, backwards political action couldn’t get worse, check out this piece on our foreign-funded Chamber of Commerce and its partisan attack ads against climate and clean energy political leaders.

& A Little More Climate Science…


We had a few climate science pieces this week, on how global warming will accelerate precipitation and evaporation cycles, on how current climate goals are not safe, and on how an ice-free Arctic won’t absorb more CO2.

There’s also an excellent piece by physicist John Cook of Skeptical Science on cherry picking climate science and making it show you things you want to see (or show others), no matter how untrue such things are.

Hope you enjoyed this week’s wrap-up.

Photo Credit: William Hague, by flickr user Drown




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