Who needs peer review when you can Pruitt review climate science?
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Who needs peer review when you can Pruitt review climate science?
Read this article:
Who needs peer review when you can Pruitt review climate science?
When you bite into a hamburger or enjoy a pile of roast asparagus, do you think about the impact it has on the environment? Well, maybe you should.
See, the food that we eat has an incredible impact on climate change. In fact, agriculture is one of the largest sources of greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide and methane. What foods we choose to buy, howwe choose to purchase them and how often we consume them matter to global warming.
And not all foods have an equal impact.
Livestock and their byproductsaccount forat least 32,000 million tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) per year, or51percentof all worldwide greenhouse gas emissions. And agriculture is responsible for80-90percentof all United States water consumption. That’s crazy!
Here are the top five offenders.
In 2011, CleanMetrics Corp., a Portland, Oregon-based environmental firm, published a report called “The Meat Eater’s Guide to Climate Change & Health.” Based on that report, these foods are the most ‘environmentally impactful’ based on their greenhouse gas emissions. (Be sure to check out their methodology in the report itself.)
Each of these foods was studied from a variety of angles: emissions produced before a product leaves the farm (i.e. use of fertilizer and pesticides, irrigation, impact of animal feed) and emissions produced after the product leaves the farm (i.e. food processing, transport, retail, cooking and ultimately waste disposal).
Here are the results, in kilograms of CO2:
1. Lamb – Produces 39.2 kg CO2 during its lifetime.
2. Beef – Produces 27 kg CO2 during its lifetime.
3. Cheese – Produces 13.5 kg CO2 during its lifetime.
4. Pork – Produces 12.1 kg CO2 during its lifetime.
5. Farmed Salmon – Produces 11.9 kg CO2 during its lifetime.
And it’s not just animal products that are the problem.Potatoes produce the most emissions of all protein-rich plants,followed by asparagus, avocados, bananas and eggplant. Most of these require air freight to different parts of the world, because they only grow in warm climates.
What can you do about it?
Every single day, a person who eats a vegan diet saves 1,100 gallons of water, 45 pounds of grain, 30 square feet of forested land, 20 pounds CO2 equivalent and one animals life. That’s seriously convincing!
Here’s what I want you to hear most:food is power.You have an incredible amount of influence in the palm of your hand. What will you do with it?
Reducing (or eliminating) your meat intake hasinnumerable benefits. Youll contribute significantly to the causes of conservation and lowering greenhouse gas emissions, and youll look and feel better in the process.
Here are some tips to get you started:
Alreadyeating a plant-based diet? Make it a point to shop in season and shop local whenever possible, if not always!
Think you can do it? I know you can!
Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.
Deep in the Republican platform, a quirky line urges the private sector to invent ways to sop up CO2 — a gas many G.O.P. politicians assert is harmless. Original source: As Its Leaders Deny Warming Risks, the G.O.P. Platform Urges Private Sector to Capture CO2? ; ; ;
As Its Leaders Deny Warming Risks, the G.O.P. Platform Urges Private Sector to Capture CO2?
“Global warming is a myth.” Donald Trump calls global warming a “hoax.” He claims climate science is “bullshit,” and he’s even described it (supposedly as a joke) as a Chinese conspiracy. So perhaps it isn’t surprising that Mike Pence—who Trump just named as his running mate—has similar views. “Global warming is a myth,” Pence wrote nearly two decades ago in an op-ed unearthed by BuzzFeed. “Environmentalists,” the Indiana Republican explained, “claim that certain ‘greenhouse gases’ like carbon dioxide are mucking up the atmosphere and causing the earth to gradually warm. Despite the fact that CO2 is a naturally occurring phenomenon in nature, the greenpeace folks want to blame it all on coal (another natural mineral) and certain (evil) coal burning power plants.” He added (inaccurately) that “the earth is actually cooler today than it was about 50 years ago.” Mike Pence has a long history of rejecting climate science. You can read the full op-ed, preserved by the Internet Archive, by clicking here. Pence didn’t change his tune much after winning election to Congress. “The theory of global warming is just that—a theory,” he told the Star Press, a Muncie, Ind., newspaper, in 2002. Seven years later, he continued to express doubt. Pence told Hardball’s Chris Matthews in May 2009 that “the science is very mixed on the subject of global warming,” though he added, “I’m sure reducing CO2 emissions would be a positive thing.” He also insisted that there is “growing skepticism in the scientific community about global warming.” You can watch Pence’s comments above. As governor of Indiana, Pence doubled down. In a 2014 interview with Chuck Todd, Pence said he doesn’t know if man-made climate change “is a resolved issue in science today” and later added, “We’ll leave the scientific debates for the future.” Pence has also been an outspoken opponent of policies that would reduce greenhouse gas emissions. He told the Star Press that a cap and trade proposal passed by the US House of Representatives in 2009 would raise energy prices and harm the economy. The legislation would have put a limit and a price on the carbon emissions that cause climate change. “I really believe Democratic climate change legislation will cap growth and trade jobs,” he said. As governor of Indiana, Pence has continued to fight against policies intended to combat global warming. His latest battle? An effort to block President Barack Obama’s Clean Power Plan, a set of Environmental Protection Agency regulations that would limit greenhouse gas emissions from coal-fired power plants. Last year, Pence called Indiana a “proud pro-coal state” on a press call, according to the Indianapolis Star. He vowed to resist the new regulations. In June 2015, Pence sent a letter to Obama stating that Indiana would refuse to comply with the plan unless there was “significant improvement” to it. As in 2009, he warned of higher electricity prices if the proposal was implemented. He called the rules “a vast overreach of federal power.” “Your approach to energy policy places environmental concerns above all others,” he wrote to Obama. Despite Pence’s objections to federal efforts to combat climate change, he apparently has no problem asking the federal government to fund green jobs in his state. As Think Progress reported, in 2009 Pence wrote a letter to then-US Secretary of Energy Steven Chu supporting a grant application submitted by an Indiana company that wanted to use algae to produce fuels. “Algae production directly addresses all of the significant challenges being faced by the US,” wrote Pence, “namely domestic energy security, greenhouse gas emissions, scientific leadership in a variety of industries, and broad-based green job creation.” Master image: AJ Mast/AP
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Scientists are working on ways to recycle and reuse carbon dioxide, rather than storing it underground, to fight climate change. Visit site – Researchers Aim to Put Carbon Dioxide Back to Work ; ; ;
Original article –
A study found that oceans that had absorbed more atmospheric carbon dioxide leads to young corals with serious skeletal deformities in subtropical waters. View original article – Trilobites: Acidic Ocean Leads to Warped Skeletons for Young Coral ; ; ;
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Trilobites: Acidic Ocean Leads to Warped Skeletons for Young Coral
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The most comprehensive study to date on geoengineering says we probably shouldn’t do it—at least not yet. Johnno/Flickr You might have heard of “geoengineering.” It’s the highly controversial theory that humans could slow, stop, or even reverse global warming by “hacking” the planet with epic technological feats that would alter the chemical composition of the atmosphere. The idea has been around for a few decades, but there have been only a few actual experiments with it, most recently in 2012 when a rogue American millionaire dumped 220,000 pounds of iron sulphate into the Pacific Ocean. His goal was to create a massive, carbon-sucking plankton bloom. The effort succeeded, but was condemned by many scientists, the Canadian government, and the United Nations for violating international laws and for forging ahead with little regard for potential ecological fallout. Every now and then, geoengineering of one kind or another gets floated by the media as a possible silver bullet if we continue to fail to make meaningful reductions to greenhouse gas emissions. But as the plankton debacle vividly illustrated, there are any number of very good reasons why the proposition never seems to get any traction. Ideas for how to do it are either too expensive, too entangled with thorny legal and geopolitical complications, too ineffective, or all of the above. These issues and more were laid bare today in the most comprehensive assessment of geoengineering to date, a two-volume study involving dozens of scientists that was pulled together by the National Academy of Sciences (a nongovernmental organization that produces peer-reviewed research). The reports offered a fairly damning critique of geoengineering and found that while there could be value in continuing to research the technology, it will never be a panacea for climate change, and we’re definitely not ready to start using it yet. “We definitely don’t think that we’re ready to say this is something worth doing,” said atmospheric chemist Lynn Russell of the University of California, San Diego, a lead author on one of the report’s volumes. There are two basic categories of geoengineering, each with its own unique obstacles. The first involves pulling carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere and burying it underground, effectively reversing the man-made greenhouse gas pollution that causes global warming. (The plankton incident fits this category; the idea was that the plankton bloom would consume a bunch of CO2 and then take it to the ocean depths when the plankton died.) The second kind involves “seeding” the atmosphere with particles that would increase its reflectivity—what climate scientists call “albedo”—and send more sunlight back into space. Before getting into the whys and wherefores of both categories, it’s important to note one key finding of the study: A major risk of all geoengineering is that scientists really don’t know that much about what the risks are. This is a relatively young field, Russell explained, but more importantly, it hasn’t held much attention for scientists because even the most optimistic scenarios for geoengineering aren’t a preferable substitute to the more familiar endeavor of reducing greenhouse gas emissions from cars, power plants, and other sources. “As a community we’ve been afraid to do the research,” Russell said, “because we thought it would take attention away from mitigating greenhouse gases.” On that note, this week negotiators from around the world are meeting in Geneva to make strides toward a international climate accord expected by the end of this year. And recently President Barack Obama has announced a few major initiatives—new limits on carbon dioxide and methane emissions—that should slash America’s greenhouse footprint. But progress is still too slow for most climate hawks: Even the usually-optimistic United Nations climate chief admitted last week that the upcoming accord is unlikely to keep global warming within the 3.6 degree Fahrenheit limit called for by scientists and agreed to by governments. With that in mind, Russell said, “there is an obligation to think about whether, even if climate engineering isn’t a great idea, it might not be as bad as nothing.” Which brings us back to our two categories. Here’s a useful rundown of the risks and rewards of each, from the report: NAS Note the row fourth from the bottom, about how both kinds of geoengineering should be judged; this point is key for understanding why the scientists are against rolling out geoengineering today. The report finds that existing carbon dioxide removal proposals (like ocean iron fertilization; a process called “weathering” that chemically dissolves CO2 in the ocean; or giant machines that suck carbon directly out of the air) are too expensive to deploy widely. Even if future engineering advances were to bring those costs down, they would have to be weighed against the costs of the more straightforward route: To stop burning fossil fuels for energy. Pulling carbon back out of the atmosphere on a scale necessary to alter the global climate, the report says, is unlikely ever to be more cost-effective than not putting it there in the first place. One notable exception is reforestation, which is cost-effective and readily deployable (a study yesterday from Oxford University argued that planting trees is one of the “most promising” short-term fixes for climate change). The outlook for albedo modification is somewhat more frightening, in part because the technology is already relatively cheap and available. China already creates an estimated 55 billion tons of artificial rain per year by “cloud seeding”—launching chemical-filled rockets into the upper atmosphere that accelerate the formation of ice crystals that cause rain. Albedo modification would work essentially the same way, using airplanes or rockets to deliver loads of sulphate aerosols into the stratosphere, where they would bounce sunlight back into space. But if the technology is straightforward, the consequences are anything but. The aerosols fall out of the air after a matter of years, so they would need to be continually replaced. And if we continued to burn fossil fuels, ever more aerosols would be needed to offset the warming from the additional CO2. Russell said that artificially blocking sunlight would have unknown consequences for photosynthesis by plants and phytoplankton, and that high concentrations of sulphate aerosols could produce acid rain. Moreover, if we one day suddenly ceased an albedo modification program, it could cause rapid global warming as the climate adjusts to all the built-up CO2. For these reasons, the report warns that it would be “irrational and irresponsible to implement sustained albedo modification without also pursuing emissions mitigation, carbon dioxide removal, or both.” To be fair, plenty of diversity of opinion exists among scientists. One long-time proponent of geoengineering, Harvard physicist David Keith (who was not on the committee behind this report) told the Washington Post yesterday that the technology is nothing to be afraid of: “A muffler is a technological fix for the fact that the internal combustion engine is very noisy, and people don’t have a problem with mufflers,” he said. The difference in this context is that mufflers don’t come with a host of unknown, potentially catastrophic side effects. Either way, the disagreement this topic inspires just between scientists gives you some indication of how far away we are from making it practically and politically feasible. Still, Russell said, we should continue to research both kinds of geoengineering, if only to be able to express what a large-scale experiment would actually look like. “The stage we’re at now is not even having enough information to make that decision,” she said. “But if we did put together a serious research program, we would make a lot of advances relatively quickly.” Source: Scientists Are Pretty Terrified About These Last-Minute Fixes to Global Warming ; ; ;
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Scientists Are Pretty Terrified About These Last-Minute Fixes to Global Warming
A tendency of climate campaigners to bundle science and preferred solutions runs up against “solution aversion,” a study finds Source: How ‘Solution Aversion’ and Global Warming Prescriptions Polarize the Climate Debate
How ‘Solution Aversion’ and Global Warming Prescriptions Polarize the Climate Debate
The varied energy needs and capacity of member nations led to concessions and compromises that experts say watered down an agreement that was hoped to pressure other countries at climate talks in 2015. See the original article here: E.U. Greenhouse Gas Deal Falls Short of Expectations ; ; ;