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Can you buy a greener conscience?

Los Angeles Times – September 2, 2007

P.T. Barnum supposedly said that there was a sucker born every minute. Sometimes, when I read about carbon credits, I am not sure who the sucker is – the person buying, the person selling, or the general public for thinking it is helping!

I really don’t like carbon credit schemes.  I have written about them multiple times and most of what I read simply doesn’t make sense and is closer to scam than it is to solution.

In order for credits to be feasible and to be more than a “feel good” gesture, we need solid accounting, accountability, and penalties. We have none of that now and this article makes this painfully clear. We cannot allow credits to be used for minor contributions to a project. The credit must go to the cost of reducing the greenhouse gas. 

Wembley Urged To Take Meat Off Live Earth Menu

LifeStyleExtra – July 5, 2007

It seems that the organizers of Live Earth are a little closed in their thinking.  Methane is one of the largest greenhouse gas components and animal production is one of the largest contributors to methane overproduction.  It seems that Live Earth is selling meat products which is sending the wrong message.

Organizers of the Live Earth concerts should not sell burgers or hot dogs at the high profile gigs, an animal rights group claimed


PETA activists said that Wembley should take meat off the menu after a recent UN report found that the meat industry creates more greenhouse gases than all the cars, trucks, ships and planes in the world combined.

Live Earth Pledge

Live Earth

I have no problems with people pledging to do better, I am just cynical that it will happen.  Most Americans make “resolutions” each New Years (the most popular are to lose weight and stop smoking) and by the Super Bowl, these pledges are broken.

I do have some concerns about the details of this pledge.  By pledging to the first one, 2-7 are pretty much moot. The first item, if implemented, would effectively prevent all the others from ever happening.  In the US, to reduce CO2, H2O, and methane by 90% in 18 years (time for the next generation to be born) would be a gigantic burden on the economy.  I mention this in a previous post: Wanna Pay $7 a Gallon?

How Farm Odors Contribute to Global Warming: New Research Happening in NYS

WETM – June 27, 2007

I know that others are taking a more cynical view on this legislation (see this blog and that blog and another blog) but I think this is wise money.

I have commented before on methane and its ability to add to the greenhouse effect.  It is only logical that we would spend money to research this area and see how we can control it. In fact, it may be a better investment than trying to control the carbon dioxide pollution in the environment.

The United States Department of Agriculture has released reports stating that when you smell cow manure, you’re also smelling greenhouse gas emissions.

A New Global Warming Strategy: How Environmentalists are Overlooking Vegetarianism as the Most Effective Tool Against Climate Change in Our Lifetimes

EarthSave International

This report has been out there for quite sometime but I am still surprised that more environmentalists do not advocate the changing of our diet in order to make a substantial impact on combating runaway greenhouse gases. While CO2 is widely thought to influence the weather of planet Earth, methane is a very large contributor as well.  In my opinion, methane is not discussed because the chances of convincing the large meat eating public to drop their reliance on meat as a protein source is far more difficult than blaming multi-nationals like GM, Ford, and Exxon.

Britain pulls plug on Als big climate change show

Times Online – June 3, 2007

This article concerns the concert to increase awareness of global warming called Live Earth.  The concert series is being planned by former Vice President Al Gore with as many as 12 concerts. The shows have been receiving a fair bit of criticism for their use of energy, which in itself is indicative of the entire movement.

Analysis that doesn’t matter

This is a totally different type of article and I hope you will indulge me. I typically give my editorial thoughts on an article that is fairly easily referenced on the web but in this case I wanted to explain some basic mistakes of an article that I recently read and then propose my own calculations on the article. I finish this post with some observations. While I try very hard to show arguments on both sides of this complicated issue, by reading this post you will have some idea of my personal stance.

The article in question is on the Deltoid blog and is titled Corrections to the McKitrick (2002) Global Average Temperature Series. It may be valuable for you to click through to that article and read it first before continuing here. Take your time, I will wait.

A New Global Warming Strategy: How Environmentalists are Overlooking Vegetarianism as the Most Effective Tool Against Climate Change in Our Lifetimes

EarthSave International

This report has been out there for quite sometime but I am still surprised that more environmentalists do not advocate the changing of our diet in order to make a substantial impact on combating runaway greenhouse gases. While CO2 is widely thought to influence the weather of planet Earth, methane is a very large contributor as well.  In my opinion, methane is not discussed because the chances of convincing the large meat eating public to drop their reliance on meat as a protein source is far more difficult than blaming multi-nationals like GM, Ford, and Exxon.

Why global climate models do not give a realistic description of the local climate

RealClimate – May 27, 2007

I have written about this excellent site often (here and here and here and here and here) but I really must encourage all of my regular readers to read this article on climate models.  As you know, I regularly have called for more effort to be done in this area of computer technology as I honestly believe that the climate scientists need a concerted effort for a rapid increase in capability in handling massive amounts of numbers and equations in parallel.

The climatic effects of water vapour

physicsweb – May 2003

This article is a couple of years old but it is excellent. I have been meaning to write about it for some time but there have been recent discussions on the web regarding the thermodynamic tendencies of the entire planet, as it relates to space and the sun with comparisons to the Moon, Venus and Mars.  While these discussions are scientifically interesting, they do not really address the issue at hand.