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May 18, 2007

Carbon indulgences

Here's a very interesting article from a somewhat surprising source: Alexander Cockburn (co-editor of CounterPunch) wrote it for his "Beat the Devil" column in The Nation.

Is Global Warming a Sin?

[from the May 14, 2007 issue]

In a couple of hundred years historians will be comparing the frenzies over our supposed human contribution to global warming to the tumults at the latter end of the tenth century as the Christian millennium approached. Then as now, the doomsters identified human sinfulness as the propulsive factor in the planet's rapid downward slide. Then as now, a buoyant market throve on fear. The Roman Catholic Church sold indulgences like checks. The sinners established a line of credit against bad behavior and could go on sinning. Today a world market in "carbon credits" is in formation. Those whose "carbon footprint" is small can sell their surplus carbon credits to others less virtuous than themselves.

As it happens, I noticed my first TerraPass bumper sticker just this week.

But to stay with the topic, Coyote links to this interesting post that appeared on the US Senate Committee for Environment and Public Works blog (what a mouthful) this week.

Climate Momentum Shifting: Prominent Scientists Reverse Belief in Man-made Global Warming - Now Skeptics

Growing Number of Scientists Convert to Skeptics After Reviewing New Research

Following the U.S. Senate's vote today on a global warming measure (see today's AP article: Senate Defeats Climate Change Measure,) it is an opportune time to examine the recent and quite remarkable momentum shift taking place in climate science. Many former believers in catastrophic man-made global warming have recently reversed themselves and are now climate skeptics. The names included below are just a sampling of the prominent scientists who have spoken out recently to oppose former Vice President Al Gore, the United Nations, and the media driven “consensus” on man-made global warming.

They've got a dozen folks listed, so it's way too long to excerpt. RTWT.

Via this post at the reference frame, I learned that there was an "Intelligence Squared US" debate on the topic "Global Warming Is Not a Crisis" in mid-March. The author links to a set of 10 video clips of the debate that are availabe at YouTube.

Since NPR is the distributor for these debates, there's a page about the debate at the NPR site as well, which includes this summary.

In this debate, the proposition was: "Global Warming Is Not a Crisis." In a vote before the debate, about 30 percent of the audience agreed with the motion, while 57 percent were against and 13 percent undecided. The debate seemed to affect a number of people: Afterward, about 46 percent agreed with the motion, roughly 42 percent were opposed and about 12 percent were undecided.

Posted by joke du jour at May 18, 2007 08:30 PM

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