[GWSG] literacy don't matter; random hurricanes?; 400 ppm; sea walls; corporate personality

Tilley, Al atilley at unf.edu
Tue Jun 5 09:43:08 EDT 2012

1.  Increasing scientific literacy does not correlate with an increase in support for climate science.  Identification with a cultural group appears to be the more significant factor.  A Nature Climate Change study implies that we will not succeed in sensitizing people to the problem through scientific literacy alone.  Education on climate change should appeal to altered cultural identification, perhaps by outlining the possibility of an attractive sustainable community (my suggestion).    http://content.usatoday.com/communities/sciencefair/post/2012/05/study-personality-split-climate-views-not-science-literacy/1#.T8LOkVJ6PiQ

2.  A summary of the recent record of hurricane activity maintains that the current seven year lull in major hurricanes making landfall in the US is due largely to random variability.  While the influence of global warming on hurricane activity is neither simple nor clear, the expanding area of waters warm enough to feed a hurricane (80° F and up) may have helped to turn storms to the North Atlantic and away from the mainland last year.  http://www.climatecentral.org/news/americas-record-major-hurricane-gap/

3.  The arctic atmosphere is now at 400 ppm CO2.  http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/47637140/ns/us_news-environment/

4.  The first response for coasts threatened by sea level rise is to build a sea wall.  What will probably follow is a decision to get out of the way gracefully. http://www.therepublic.com/view/story/ebcc4cfaa631404994b6da2ef339a96f/US-SCI--Fleeing-from-the-Sea

5.    Leaked documents reveal elements of the British government attempting to undermine EU emissions control measures.  The attempts are backed by fossil fuel corporations.  The issues in the documents are familiar from US politics.  http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2012/jun/03/coalition-dilute-eu-green-energy-targets  Greenpeace turned over the British rock by securing the incriminating documents.  The Union of Concerned Scientists recently found that 19 of 28 US corporations which have been busy advertising their concern for California emissions controls publically were working to undermine them in private.  http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-05-30/companies-political-cash-contradicts-climate-stance-group-says.html  Perhaps the exposures of corporate and governmental hypocrisy will help neuter their efforts.  ALEC and the Heartland Institute have lost corporate support since the recent exposures of their activities.  The moderation is likely to be superficial, though.  The Global Climate Coalition broke up in 2002, after all, partly in response to the 2001 IPCC report and partly because of the exposure of their activities in such works as Ross Gelbspan’s The Heat is On (1998, and still worth your time).  But it cannot be said that the corporations mended their ways after they left the Coalition: they scuttled for fresh rocks.  If a corporation is a person it is an impaired one, lobotomized (impaired long range planning, childish sense of ethics, and bland temperament), with a single dependable motivation: greed.  Such a person requires guidance.  Our security depends on our success in moderating the activities of corporations and the politicians they purchase.  For that, publicity will not suffice.  They require regulation, which they hate so.
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