Tag Archives: Global Warming

It’s Business As Usual in Saudi Arabia… And Other News

Saudi Arabia King

The King of Saudi Arabia, King Abdullah, has died at the age of 90, weeks after being admitted to hospital with a lung infection.

His half brother and heir to the Saudi throne, Prince Salman, is 79 years old and is also in very poor health – meaning Saudi Arabia will be back in the same spot in a few years. Within hours of acceding to the throne, the newly appointed King Salman, vowed to maintain the same policies as his predecessors. “We will continue adhering to the correct policies which Saudi Arabia has followed since its establishment,” he said in a speech on state TV. So… intolerance of free speech, gender discrimination and multiple beheadings? The Guardian

Hitler MustacheFurther proof it’s never a good idea to don a Hitler mustache: the head of the German anti-Islamisation movement Pegida has stepped down after a picture of him posing as Adolf Hitler went viral. In addition to the Hitler pose, Lutz Bachmann made some disparaging anti-refugee comments on Facebook in which he reportedly described immigrants as “cattle”, “scumbags” and “trash”. Pegida spokeswoman Kathrin Oertel said the anti-refugee comments went too far but the “Hitler” photo was totally fine and that it was a “joke” and “satire, which is every citizen’s right”. Nevertheless, the German government was not pleased. Vice-Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel said: “Anyone in politics who poses as Hitler is either a total idiot or a Nazi. Reasonable people do not follow idiots, and decent people don’t follow Nazis.” Fair enough. BBC News 

Annual March For Life Protests 1973 Roe v. Wade Ruling In WashingtonYesterday marked the 42nd anniversary of Roe v. Wade, in which the US Supreme Court ruled women had the freedom to terminate a pregnancy if they desired, ending once and for all America’s abortion debate – minus the four decades of passionate debate that followed. Yesterday was no exception to the ongoing abortion fight. Anti-abortion protesters marched in Washington as the US House passed a bill to tighten restrictions on abortion. Although an earlier bill to ban abortions after 20 weeks was scrapped, the Republicans did manage to pass a more limited measure to forbid the use of taxpayer money for abortions. The White House has said it will veto the legislation – arguing it “unnecessarily restricts women’s reproductive freedom and consumers’ private insurance options” – making the whole thing a fruitless endeavour. But since the US is still sharply divided on the issue of abortion, with polls suggesting Americans are about evenly split four decades after the Roe v Wade, politicians and citizens alike will continue to squabble over the issue or years to come.  New York Times

Climate Change Senate 1The US Senate passed an amendment on Wednesday saying climate change is real and not a hoax – because the only way to decide if something is a scientific fact is by having politicians vote on it. The measure, stating that “climate change is real and is not a hoax”, passed by a margin of 98-1. The lone dissenter was Senator Roger Wicker from Mississippi. Sigh… Although to Mississippi’s credit, their other state Senator, Thad Cochran, voted yes – possibly because he’s old enough to have witnessed all the cyclical trends since the last ice age. The whole climate science squabble broke out during debate over amendments to the bill to approve the Keystone XL pipeline. Democrats wanted Republicans to admit that climate change is real and that human activity plays a role. But while Republicans were willing to admit that climate change isn’t a hoax, many refused to admit that human activity is a factor. Two other amendments (which needed 60 votes to pass) failed: “human activity significantly contributes to climate change” failed 50-49 and “human activity contributes to climate change” failed 59-40. Still, progress…? The Hill

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Current Event Cat of the Day: Global Warming

Current Event Cat - Global Warming

Scientists have put out a new global warning about global warming. Spoiler alert: it exists!

According to a new landmark report from hundreds of the world’s top climate scientists, there is a 95 to 100 percent chance that humans have been the “dominant cause” of global warming since the 1950s.

In the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s previous assessment in 2007, they said it was “very likely” that global warming was man-made. The UN-sponsored panel has now upgraded to “extremely likely.”

“Human influence has been detected in warming of the atmosphere and the ocean, in changes in the global water cycle, in reductions in snow and ice, in global mean sea level rise, and in changes in some climate extremes,” the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change wrote in the report.

First, duh. Second, is this a thing we’re still debating? Apparently yes, because climate-change deniers have been out and about promoting the idea that because temperatures have risen at a slower pace in the past 15 years, humans are clearly not responsible for global warming.

The UN’s climate panel say that’s a bunch of baloney and a pause in warming over the past 15 years is too short to reflect long-term trends. And now they’ve got something no one can dispute: physical evidence – in the form of a report! The report is a 30-page synopsis of a larger, 900-page report that will be released next week on the physical science of climate change. The gist of the report is that humans are totally causing global warming and we have many things to look forward to:

  • a rise in sea levels of 26-82 cm by the end of century (goodbye Maldives!)
  • a rise in global average temperature by 0.3 to 4.8 degrees Celcius by the end of the century (have fun in Dubai!)
  • an increased urgency for emission cuts (I’m looking at you China…)

Climate activists said the report should spur governments to action, and for once the US seems to be on board. And I’m not just talking about crazy ole environmentalist Al Gore – here’s what John Kerry had to say:

This is yet another wakeup call: Those who deny the science or choose excuses over action are playing with fire,” the U.S. Secretary of State said. “Once again, the science grows clearer, the case grows more compelling, and the costs of inaction grow beyond anything that anyone with conscience or common sense should be willing to even contemplate.”

Now let’s see if the US government has any common sense…. oh dear.

Via: New York Times & Current Event Cats