What have you done today to lower your impact?

We are washing away the foundations of our existence on every front. It is high time we move from crashing about on the planet like a bull in china shop and find a way to go forward with intent. We must find systems of living based on sustainability. The systems and tools exist, it is up to each of us to adopt them.

Blog Archive

Wednesday, 18 March 2009

The dangers of the blinkered US media

I've requested on several occasions recently that readers of this blog let me know if they had seen reporting of various environmental or climate change stories on the mainstream media. Of course, with recent news about Anna Nicole Smith to cover, the major purveyors of news in the US just didn't have time to cover threats to human civilization as we know it!

Joe Romm has written an interesting piece about it over on Climate Progress.
Here is an excerpt;

"Energy Daily (subs. req’d) notes of the U.S. media non-coverage of Copenhagen:

Ironically–given the Gallup finding that two in five Americans think the press is exaggerating climate change concerns–only a few of the major U.S. news outlets published accounts of the Copenhagen gathering, which received heavy coverage by news outlets in Europe and Asia.

Great point — though “ironically” isn’t the right word. There is nothing ironic about this. It is cause and effect. The right word is “tragically. ...

West Coast Climate Equity notes:

Last time mean global temperatures reached 2 to 3 degrees Celsius above present levels, in the mid-Pliocene (3 million years ago), an event associated with CO2 levels of about 400 parts per million, polar regions were heated by near-8 degrees C and sea levels have risen by 25+/-12 meters relative to the present. This represents near-total melting of Greenland and west Antarctica ice sheets (Robinson et al., 2008: “Pliocene role in assessing future climate impacts” (http://pubs.giss.nasa.gov/ abstracts/ 2008/ Robinson_etal.html).

A rise of mean global temperatures above 4 or 5 degrees Celsius would shift the atmosphere to pre-glacial/interglacial conditions, which dominated the Earth from about 34 million years ago (end-Eocene) (Zachos et al., 2008) http://www.nature.com/ nature/ journal/ v451/ n7176/ full/ nature06588.html

That means ultimate sea level rise of 250 feet, with the best current projection being 5 feet by 2100 (see “Startling new sea level rise research: “Most likely” 0.8 to 2.0 meters by 2100“), rising thereafter 10 to 20 inches a decade (or more) for centuries. Good luck adapting to that, next 50 generations."

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