Wednesday, July 28, 2021

A leaked draft report from the United Nations (UN) includes a stark warning about climate change - 'the worst is yet to come,' with droughts, starvation and extreme heat all mooted for the next 30 years.

Will these galoots ever recognize that NONE of their prophecies ever come true?

The report, from the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) was set to be released next year, but it was obtained by Agence France-Presse (AFP), which reported on the findings Thursday.

That draft states that prolonged warming even beyond 2.7 degrees Fahrenheit (1.5C) could produce 'progressively serious, centuries' long and, in some cases, irreversible consequences.'

These consequences, according to the report, are set to appear by 2050 and will likely cause 130 million people worldwide to face chronic hunger, 350 million to be in drought and expose 420 million more people to extreme and potentially lethal heatwaves.

'The worst is yet to come, affecting our children's and grandchildren's lives much more than our own,' the report says.

'Climate change will fundamentally reshape life on Earth in the coming decades, even if humans can tame planet-warming greenhouse gas emissions.'

AFP says the 4,000-page draft report 'may be subject to minor changes in the coming months as the IPCC shifts its focus to a key executive summary for policymakers.'

Prof Helen McGregor is an ARC Future Fellow at the University of Wollongong said in a statement: 'The draft IPCC report is not the final report and therefore it is inappropriate for me to comment on the report itself.

'However, in general climate tipping points are extremely concerning. Essentially a tipping point is a switch from one state to another with often a much slower pathway back to the original state. Ice sheet melting is an example of this, with rapid rises in sea level – meters-worth of sea-level rise – as a consequence.

'Past ocean acidification is another example with the geological record showing an acidification event 56 million years ago occurring in a few thousand years compared to the recovery taking 200,000 years.

'The message here is that there really are dire and costly consequences of increasing CO2 levels in the atmosphere. It is in all of our best interests to reduce emissions as soon as we possibly can.'

The report has four main takeaways, with he first stating that Earth's climate is already changing with 2 degrees Fahrenheit (1.1C) of warming.

This contradicts previous findings that ensured limiting warming to 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit (2C) above mid-19th century would be enough to save our planet.

However, the report notes that we are heading to a rise of 5.4 degrees Fahrenheit (2C) 'at best' with the current trends.

The World Meteorological Organization projected a 40 percent chance last month that Earth will surpass the 2.7-degree (1.5C) threshold for at least one year by 2026.

But for some animals and plants, it will be too late.

'Even at 1.5 degrees Celsius of warming, conditions will change beyond many organisms' ability to adapt,' the report notes.

And this includes the Great Barrier Reef.

The Australian Academy of Science revealed in April that if 2.7F (1.5C) degrees of warming continues, the world's largest coral reef system will eventually perish by 2025.

The second takeaway is the impact it will have on humans living on Earth.

Millions will face hunger, water shortages, extreme heat and natural disasters.

Coastal cities are also at the highest risk of climate change, which will threaten millions of people with floods and more frequent storm surges.

'Adaptation costs for Africa are projected to increase by tens of billions of dollars per year with warming greater than two degrees,' the report cautions.

The report also highlights a number of point-of-no-return thresholds.

Approximately 12 temperature tipping points have been found in the climate system.

These include a warming of 3.6 degrees (2C) that is enough to melt glaciers in Greenland and the West Arctic.

A study released in May revealed the Greenland ice sheet, the second largest on the planet, is close to reaching the tipping point of no return with 'accelerated melting.'

If the troubling signs in this region were to happen to the entire ice sheet, causing it to melt completely, it could eventually raise global sea levels by 23 feet (7m).

'Even at 1.5 degrees Celsius of warming, conditions will change beyond many organisms' ability to adapt,' the report notes. And this includes the Great Barrier Reef +5
'Even at 1.5 degrees Celsius of warming, conditions will change beyond many organisms' ability to adapt,' the report notes. And this includes the Great Barrier Reef

The draft also highlights tipping points could cause tons of carbon to spew from Siberia's permafrost, adding more to our warming world.

Professor William Laurance, director of the Centre for Tropical Environmental and Sustainability Sciences (TESS) at James Cook University, said in a statement: 'A scary thing about tipping points is that they’re often ‘unknown unknowns’—sudden, calamitous environmental changes that come flying out of nowhere and smack us in the back of the head.

'For example, the Amazon Rainforest, where I work, has been suffering badly from bizarre droughts in recent years. These droughts are being triggered by exceptionally warm Atlantic seas that drive rain-bearing winds away from the rainforest—killing hundreds of millions of trees and triggering severe wildfires.

'No one expected this new type of killer drought in the Amazon—but it’s here now. Global warming isn’t just affecting cold parts of the world. It’s also disrupting the climate and ecology of the world’s biggest rainforest, with serious implications for us all.'

The last takeaway is that in order to recover our world from climate change, we need to adopt 'transformational change.'

This includes protecting and restoring blue carbon ecosystems, kelp and mangrove forests for example, which protect coastal regions from flooding and provides food security.

'We need transformational change operating on processes and behaviors at all levels: individual, communities, business, institutions and governments,' it says.

'We must redefine our way of life and consumption.'


ABC News is Wrong, the Western U.S. Is Not Suffering from a Climate Change Induced “Megadrought”

ABC News is promoting the false claim that human climate change is responsible for a “Mega-drought” affecting much of the Western United States. Although drought conditions have persisted for a couple of years now across portions of the Western United States, droughts in the dry West are common and research shows much larger, longer-term droughts have occurred there historically. Because current conditions are not outside the historic records of drought, there is no evidence human greenhouse gas emissions are contributing the current drought.

In a story, titled “‘Mega-drought’ in West directly linked to climate change, experts say,” ABC New claims,

“The ‘mega-drought’ that’s plaguing much of the western U.S. is a direct consequence of warming global temperatures, according to experts. The term is used to describe a severe and intense drought that spans a couple of decades, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration meteorologist Brad Pugh told ABC News.”

ABC News’ report starts from a false premise, that the Western United States has been suffering severe drought conditions for couple of decades. It hasn’t. At worst, some areas of the Western United States have been experiencing some level of drought for a couple of years at most. Data shows “back to back” dry years are not unusual in Western United States, and consecutive years of drought don’t count as a mega-drought, regardless of the severity.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reintroduced its Climate Change Indicator series in mid-May. The agency’s post, titled “Climate Change Indicators: Drought,” reported no cause for alarm that climate change is increasing drought. The data cited and graphed by EPA shows no trend towards greater numbers of droughts or droughts of greater severity.

“Average drought conditions across the nation have varied over time,” writes EPA. “The 1930s and 1950s saw the most widespread droughts, while the last 50 years have generally been wetter than average [see the figure below]. Over the entire period … the overall trend has been toward wetter conditions,” wrote EPA.

EPA’s drought climate change indicator confirms what other sources of data have shown. As reported in Climate at a Glance: Drought, for example, the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reports with “high confidence” that precipitation has increased over mid-latitude land areas of the Northern Hemisphere (including the United States) during the past 70 years. IPCC also has “low confidence” about any negative precipitation trends occurring globally.

Moreover, the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reports America is currently is undergoing its longest period in recorded history with less than 40 percent of the country experiencing “very dry” conditions. Also, the United States in 2017 – and then again in 2019 – registered its smallest percentage of land area experiencing drought. Indeed in 2019, California, which is currently suffering under widespread and severe drought conditions, just two short years ago experienced among its wettest years since official records have been kept.

Conditions in Colorado and Wyoming also show how mistaken ABC News’ claims of a Western mega-drought are. Although nearly 2/3 of Colorado was experiencing severe drought or worse in June of 2020, and 93 percent of the state was suffering “severe drought” or worse as of January 2021. Yet, currently more than half the state is experiencing no drought at all, and just 35 percent of the state is experiencing severe drought or worse. In naturally arid Wyoming, one year ago, nearly 99 percent of Wyoming was entirely drought-free. This has changed. At present, 68 percent of Wyoming is suffering from some level of drought, with 24 percent experiencing at least severe drought. The data from Colorado and Wyoming’s demonstrate how dramatically precipitation conditions can change in short periods of time.

Going back further in time, research conclusively demonstrates the current drought in the Western United States is not historic in length or severity. It is well-recognized that drought is cyclical, and mega-droughts, some lasting 100 years or more, have been commonplace in the past.

In the book “The West Without Water,” the authors wrote,

“Prolonged droughts — some of which lasted more than a century — brought thriving civilizations, such as the ancestral Pueblo (Native Americans) of the Four Corners region, to starvation, migration and finally collapse.”

Indeed, research shows decade-long droughts happen once or twice a century in the Western United States, and droughts last for multiple decades, occur a few times each millennium. In a 2016 Columbia University Academic Commons paper, the authors’ state,

“During the Medieval Climate Anomaly (MCA), Western North America experienced episodes of intense aridity that persisted for multiple decades or longer. These mega-droughts are well documented in many proxy records, but the causal mechanisms are poorly understood.”

In short, contrary to ABC News’ report, the Western United States is not in the midst of a two decade long mega-drought, and it is impossible to attribute current drought conditions, only two years old, to human caused global warming.


EU: Green politicians, stop blaming climate change for your failures

The huge floods in Europe show that the EU water drainage has fallen short in protecting citizens. Even in the South of my country (The Netherlands), with an excellent record of water management, there is a huge amount of damage. How could this happen?

The situation along the coast and major rivers of my country is pretty much in order and ensured there were no casualties. However, still a lot of work need be done on the canals, tributaries and local streams. In Southeast Netherlands life is totally disrupted for some time. We already took note of this shortcoming during the major floods in the early 1990s. We also saw at that time that responsible national and local green politicians were ducking their responsibility by blaming CO2-emissions.

Now, after 30 years, nothing has changed. Again, European politicians state that they are not to blame for the victims and damage, but claim that the citizens and entrepreneurs, who have refused to play the green climate emergency game, are the culprits – an impudent way to disguise their own failure.

From mitigation to adaptation

No doubt, we are in an era of global warming, as has happened already numerous times in the history of our planet. The geological record clearly shows that periods of warming and cooling have constantly alternated. But how that complex climate mechanism works, we do not yet know. In any case, the relationship between CO2-emissions and weather extremes is scientifically very unlikely

History shows that high water levels and flooding have occurred many times over the centuries

To attribute current flooding to CO2 emissions is a mere construct

All this historical information is known by authorities. Instead of acting, they are just concerned with investing in CO2-reduction

However, if we look at the facts, we see that – in contrast to climate mitigation (less CO2) – climate adaptation (protection measures) has brought a spectacular reduction in climate casualties in recent decades. Why haven’t green decision-makers learned anything from this knowledge? They are so occupied with investments in CO2-reduction that embarrassingly few resources are allocated to effective protection measures.

We also know very well that countries like China and India are responsible for most of the global CO2 emissions and that they are going to increase their emissions significantly with hundreds of new coal-fired power plants. Note that the EU contribution is only 6% and the Dutch contribution is less than 0.5%(!) of the global CO2 emissions. So, whatever the EU is doing with CO2 it makes little difference and for The Netherlands it makes no difference at all. What will have a decisive effect, however, is to get the water drainage system in order. Success is guaranteed!

The central role of government in the 21st century, is to serve the general welfare of the population, and that would include maintaining public infrastructure and adapting it to changing circumstances. This is especially true for weather extremes, because it is here that much suffering can be prevented. It is well-known that adaptation provides high benefits at low costs. So, why do we allow green politicians to continue with their malicious CO2-measures? Why don’t we stop them from wasting tens of billions of tax revenues into unreliable and wasteful biomass plants and wind turbines? They divert these funds from much-needed locks, pumping stations and inland dikes?

Governments held hostage by the Greens

At the beginning of July, some four(!) days before the floods, hydrologists were alerting authorities to imminent heavy rains. Politicians and media, however, ignored these warnings. Instead, they treated us to drivel from EU vice-president Timmermans about CO2. Citizens were left in the dark; they carried on with their daily business, being unaware of the huge water masses that were coming their way. As a result, too many people paid with their lives in Germany and Belgium. Some deal, this ‘Green Deal’!


Biden’s Conservation Plan Hints at Land Grab, Governors Warn

Tucked away on page nine of one of President Joe Biden’s executive orders on climate change are two small paragraphs that have raised alarm among governors of more than a dozen states. The paragraphs task the administration to figure out a way “to achieve the goal of conserving at least 30 percent of our lands and waters by 2030.”

While all sides seem to support taking care of nature, subjecting nearly a third of America to federal conservation rules is hardly what many state and local officials have in mind.

Pete Ricketts, governor of the heavily agricultural state of Nebraska, was among the first to raise questions about the plan.

The administration considers about 12 percent of American land and water to be currently in conservation. If that’s to become 30 percent, a chunk of land roughly the size of Nebraska would have to be added every year for nine years, Ricketts pointed out.

“What we’ve asked from the administration is for more information, because their math doesn’t work,” he said on June 24, announcing an executive order opposing the “30 x 30” plan.

“Either they’re going to fail to get to 30 percent, or they’re not telling us something else about how they’re going to get to 30 percent.”

His order bans the state government from supporting federal conservation programs without the governor’s express authorization, among other measures.

Ricketts and 14 other governors sent a letter to the administration in April with a request for more details on the plan. They pointed out that the federal government has no authority to unilaterally take land for conservation.

“We are deeply concerned about any effort to enlarge the federal estate or further restrict the use of public lands in our states,” they said.

Realization of the plan would be “infringing on the private property rights of our citizens and significantly harming our economies,” the letter says.

Ricketts said they haven’t heard back from the administration.

The White House and the U.S. Department of Agriculture didn’t respond to requests for comment.

Federal departments of interior, agriculture, and commerce as well as Biden’s Council on Environmental Quality put out a preliminary report in May that was supposed to outline how the “30 x 30” goal was to be achieved (pdf).

But the 24-page document still largely deals in generalities. Prominently, it fails to define what the administration means by “conservation.”

As Ricketts sees it, local landowners are already doing a good job taking care of the land.

“Farmers and ranchers were the original conservationists,” he said during a June 24 townhall in Pickrell, Nebraska.

The federal report acknowledges so too, saying “there is a strong stewardship ethic among America’s fishers, farmers, ranchers, forest owners, and other private landowners.”

But “if that’s the case … all agricultural land would be considered in conservation,” said Tanya Storer, one of the commissioners of Cherry County, Nebraska, during the townhall. “So that can’t be what they mean.”

The report suggests the “30 x 30” plan can be enacted without new laws, on a voluntary basis, while taking into consideration local input.

“Though President Biden’s national conservation goal is ambitious, it can be achieved using the wide array of existing tools and strategies,” it says.

For sure, the government already has an arsenal of conservation programs, some of them having already been in place for decades.

But if all those programs so far only achieved 12 percent conservation, how does the administration plan to push it to 30 in just 10 years, Ricketts asked.

“I don’t believe that the federal government is going to try to come out and just take land, through eminent domain, for example,” he said. “I believe the way they’re going to try and cover these goals is by creating more ways that they can regulate you and take your private property rights away.”

He suspects the government will try to cajole people into signing conservation agreements where they surrender some of their property rights in exchange for a financial compensation. In a series of press conferences and townhalls, he’s been warning Nebraskans to “read the fine print” of any contract they may be offered by the government to make sure they understand the commitment.

Some such agreements—conservation easements, for instance—can even be permanent, he noted.

The government may set up the agreement in a way that it allows the owner to keep using the land, even for agriculture, Storer explained. The trick is, if the owner wants to do something new, suddenly the federal government may have a say in it.

“You create a baseline. So whatever you’re doing now, you can continue to do, but just a quick raise of hands: How many farmers here do things the same way you did them 20 years ago?” she asked.

Nobody raised their hand.

Nebraska land is currently 97 percent private. Subjecting 30 percent of it to federal restrictions “would be devastating for small towns and rural communities,” Ricketts said during the townhall.

The impact on urban areas would be minimal, since those are “already developed,” he said.

“It’s here. We’re going to pay the price for that, if that land is restricted. And that’s why I’m so concerned about this plan. Because it will impact so many of us in rural areas.”

Conservation easements would also hike up property taxes, he said. Once a piece of land is restricted, its price goes down and the local assessor has to reflect it on property rolls. That means the owner is levied a lower tax and all the other owners have to pick up the slack.

Restricting land also boosts prices of all the unrestricted land, making it harder for young people to get into farming, the governor said.

He stressed he’s not against conservation per se, but urged Nebraskans to be vigilant about the government’s attempt to sneak in new regulations.




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