Just the beginning

The worst part of the story is that this is the beginning of climate change. There is no lever to pull to stop the warming at 2ºC as politicians would have us believe. The levers of industry, reliant on burning coal oil and gas, have already been pulled and the greenhouse gases in the atmosphere will be their with devastating effects for centuries or millennia to come.

As the temperature has heated year on year, breaking new records in regions all around the world, the likes of Senator James Inhofe use their guile and cunning to simplify global climate to what is going on outside the window, in order to try and convince us that the planet is fine.

The climate is not fine. Crops are failing around the world each year and more and more pressure is being put on the global water supply. With over 100,000 new people appearing on the planet each day, we are on track for one awful disaster in our own lifetimes.

Why lie?

So why? What could possibly motivate these people to pursue lies and deception on such a scale that they are willing to risk the fates of not just the poorest and most vulnerable people on Earth, but also the lives of their own children and grandchildren?

It is obvious that they are not really aware of any real science because such data is filtered out long before it can reach the cognitive receptors of the brain. We have to go a bit deeper. Digging down we hit the bedrock of basic 19th century thinking that says, the only way to emancipate yourself is to become rich at any cost. Exploiting the planet for profit is an opportunity and is the apotheosis of mans dominion over the Earth. It provides a perfect framework for disbelieving that changes to the Earth climate can possibly have serious consequences. Being rich will enable us to buy our way out of such threats.

Although many of my generation would not use money as a sound metric for wealth, for these particular climate change deniers, it is the only metric for wealth. They believe it must be pursued relentlessly and the power and deception it buys must be distributed like hard opiates amongst the masses. This should translate into enlisting their help to guard and maintain this ponzi scheme cycle of destruction.

And that is what has happened over the previous decades, that have taken us into hugely destructive resource wars, creating policies that pitch human against human. However, the veil of deception is now becoming hard to maintain when the effects of drought, huge freezing events, increased hurricane impacts, and many others are slapping US residents hard in the face. The Republican lie and spin machine is realising that the tide is turning against them.
Even the Pope has published his Encyclical calling for a global discussion that includes all people from all walks of life to participate. The Republicans hate that. Jeb Bush stated on his campaign trail that he wouldn’t go to the Pope for instruction on policy, despite the fact that the Pope never tried to dictate any policy. He just asked if we could have a discussion about a subject that is ruining millions of peoples lives and is getting increasingly worse. But the trouble with rotten eggs is eventually they begin to smell. The stench of these rotten republicans is becoming hard to ignore.

Vested interests in search of a new “story”

I was amused to to read an email newsletter from the US economist John Mauldin where he discusses the state of the environment as a major concern. His commentary is often interesting, even when not to my own taste. So I was interested that he had finally chosen to say something on the subject of the environment.

Mauldin lets slip some early indicators of what his environmental position is going to be when he says the following:

"I spent the weekend at the fabulous retreat compound of Gary Bahre, where some 15 people involved in his investments and businesses listened to Mark Faber, David Rosenberg, Ed Yardeni, Danny (David) Blanchflower, Peter Boockvar, Gary Shilling, and your humble analyst present and debate a series of economic topics. Trish Regan, now with Fox Business, moderated, kept things moving along, and displayed a very wide breadth of knowledge in her questioning."

If I was to spend a weekend anywhere with a discussion moderated by Trish Regan from Fox Business (part of the Fox News deception network), I would be sure to dust off my Seargent Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club long play records and try and get hold of several sheets of LSD, because, knowing how these guys role implies one would sure as hell need it.

Conceding the problem

Mauldin opens his letter with an overview of the climate crisis as he sees it, albeit interpreted through the mass media:

"The common meme in today’s world is that we are slowly (or perhaps even rapidly in some instances) destroying our global environment. Not just by way of global warming, but pollution, over-farming, water usage, and increasing use of all sorts of resources taken from the ground. Post-apocalyptic movies and books are the rage, showing us living in a world where man has ravaged his environment and our lives have been degraded if not destroyed. Our failure to deal with global warming and the destruction of the environment are key components of the mantra repeated by the mainstream media, pundits, and politicians."

Consulting the experts

In the run up to presenting the emerging wisdom on climate change, Mauldin introduces us to Jesse Ausubel, the author of a new paper comedically titled, ‘Nature Rebounds’: 

"I recently spent an afternoon with Jesse talking over a number of topics and especially a paper he recently published which lays out serious research in an accessible way on the subject of how things in our beleaguered world might actually be getting better."

He describes Jesse as follows:

"He has more serious science attached to his name than most climate and ecological scientists do, and he has the awards and honors to prove it."

For a quick look at some responses to the work on climate Jesse Ausubel has produced it is worth reading this page on the Think Progress climate blog: http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2011/04/27/207974/jesseausubel-decarbonization/

New strategy, same old obfuscation and deception

So this brings me back to the beginning. Having finally exhausted the argument that climate change is not manmade, those who profit from the continued business as usual burning of fossil fuels and consuming of the natural world are about to change their story:

"Nature is winning. Not everywhere, of course, and he [Jesse] documents the downside as well, notably the serious devastation of our oceans and fishing. There is still a lot to do, but the trends are positive (except, notably, for the oceans). He shows us that the effort to clean up the environment and expand the areas that are allowed to return to a more natural state has been worth it."

It is worth repeating this last line as it is likely to appear soon in the big message switch in US political climate discourse, “… the effort to clean up the environment and expand the areas that are allowed to return to a more natural state has been worth it.”

I am slightly puzzled as to what “effort to clean up” Mauldin is referring to. Certainly we have seen none of it. The world climate is changing in a way that does not suit our current civilisation and although nature will likely survive, our way of life will not. To declare that all the work we have (not) done was worth it, is a bare face lie, one that we are likely to start hearing again and again once the mainstream media mouthpieces for these fools gets underway.

Psychological summary

It is of course interesting that this is the emerging message from those who previously denied climate change was real and then that it was manmade. By casually skipping the bit where we actually have to do anything to the stage where we have done what is necessary, we see a new intent.

The emerging strategy is to try to convince the public that whilst it is obvious climate is changing, no matter how it happened, luckily we (the people the public never heard of or knew about) stepped in and did all the right things to allow nature to rebalance herself.

In the meantime, we just have to sit out this period of anomalous but anticipated crazy weather until at some unknown point in the future we will be back to where we were when things were better.

Personally, I will continue to roll my eyes at this surreal nonsense (it has long ceased to be amusing) and continue doing everything possible to promote a pathway to a sustainable (renewable) energy policy. Add to this the necessity to begin the largest and most economically beneficial project on Earth to make our civilisation as resilient as possible to the huge threats posed by an extreme disruption of the global climate system.

 

 

More posts by Nick Breeze

The World Economic Forum (WEF) is the first of the big global conferences of 2020 that will lead us to COP26 in Glasgow where governments will be under enormous pressure to agree safe and realistic action for the future. With Extinction Rebellion (XR) and other protest groups converging in the Swiss alpine town of Davos, I asked their leading spokesperson, Rupert Read, whether the tone being set here is encouraging:

 

The UK is readying itself for the presidency of the 26th Conference of the Parties (COP26), to be held in Glasgow in November 2020. In the wake of the failure of COP25, a British presidency must bring to bear its accumulated powers in diplomacy, persuasion, purpose, and determination, to recreate trust in the Paris accord, kickstarting a new decade of meaningful achievements on safeguarding our collective future. 

 

Seeing the extent of environmental destruction in 2015, Jackie Bond started volunteering for the Green Party in Southwark, SE London. In the last year, aside for standing for the Greens in Vauxhall and doubled their share of the vote, she has worked extensively with Extinction Rebellion, organising civil actions in pursuit of radical climate action. In this interview with Nick Breeze, Jackie discusses how she got involved in XR, why we need to put the climate crisis at the centre of policymaking, and her strategy for creating change in the UK.

 

Longstanding climate change siren, Professor James Hansen talks to Nick Breeze about negative emissions technologies NET's, accelerating emissions, the need for international and intergenerational cooperations. Is he optimistic?

 

Addressing a wine industry on the frontline of climate change, Former President Obama said: “We are speeding our car towards the cliff at a very fast rate”. The audience and former president were invited to the launch of this new initiative by 326yr old port company CEO, Adrian Bridge, who is calling for solutions, saying “what we need to do is stop talking and start doing!” Nick Breeze reports.

 

A three day hearing at the High Court is in process that will decide whether an injunction be granted, effectively preventing any campaigning that might negatively impact the economic interests of UKOG and their associated companies.