RealClimate logo


Don’t make a choice that your children will regret

Filed under: — group @ 4 November 2016

Dear US voters,

the world is holding its breath. The stakes are high in the upcoming US elections. At stake is a million times more than which email server one candidate used, or how another treated women. The future of humanity will be profoundly affected by your choice, for many generations to come.

The coming four years is the last term during which a US government still has the chance, jointly with the rest of the world, to do what is needed to stop global warming well below 2°C and closer to 1.5°C, as was unanimously decided by 195 nations in the Paris Agreement last December. The total amount of carbon dioxide the world can still emit in order to have at least a 50% chance to stop warming at 1.5 °C will, at the current rate of emissions, be all used up in under ten years! This time can only be stretched out by making emissions fall rapidly.

Even 2°C of global warming is very likely to spell the end of most coral reefs on Earth. 2°C would mean a largely ice-free Arctic ocean in summer, right up to the North Pole. Even 2°C of warming is likely to destabilize continental ice sheets and commit the world to many meters of sea-level rise, lasting for millennia. Further global warming will likely lead to increasing extreme weather, droughts, harvest failures, and the risk of armed conflict and mass migration.

greenland00037small

Meltwater on the Greenland Ice Sheet. Photo with kind permission by Ragnar Axelsson.

In case you have any doubts about the science: in the scientific community there is a long-standing consensus that humans are causing dangerous global warming, reflected in the clear statements of many scientific academies and societies from around the world. None of the 195 governments that signed the Paris Agreement saw any reasons for doubting the underlying scientific facts; doubts about the science that you see in some media are largely manufactured by interest groups trying to fool you.

You have a fateful choice to make. The policies of candidates and parties on climate change could hardly be more different. Hillary Clinton would continue to work with the international community to tackle the global warming crisis and help the transition to modern clean and renewable energies. Donald Trump denies that the problem even exists and has promised to go back to coal and to undo the Paris Agreement, which comes into force today, the 4th of November 2016, as culmination of over twenty years of negotiations.

Please consider this carefully. This is not an election about personalities, it is about policies that will determine our future for a long time to come. While the presidential race has gotten the most attention, voters should consider climate not just at the ‘top of the ticket’, but all the way down the ballot. Don’t make a choice that you, your children and your children’s children will regret forever.

David Archer, Rasmus Benestad, Ray Bradley, Michael Mann, Ray Pierrehumbert, Stefan Rahmstorf and Eric Steig

215 Responses to “Don’t make a choice that your children will regret”

  1. 1
  2. 2
    Russell says:

    “as was unanimously decided by 195 nations in the Paris Agreement last December.”
    Before telling us how to vote, could you please tell us how many of the 195 voted on the subject?

  3. 3
    jules says:

    “The world is holding its breath. The stakes are high in the upcoming US elections. At stake is a million times more than which email server one candidate used, or how another treated women. The future of humanity will be profoundly affected by your choice, for many generations to come.”

    Absolutely true. Good start. But I’m stunned that then you went on to rant about the piddling problems of climate change.

    I’m more concerned about the rise of Populism in Europe and the US, which seems intent on destroying all vestiges of Enlightenment ideas such as reason and logic. The death of science follows. Within that, disinterest (disbelief) in the climate change problem is a side-show.

    The problem with ‘cry for help’ suicide attempts (ie protest votes) is that they sometimes turn into actual suicide. Don’t risk it, America!

  4. 4
    Alastair B. McDonald says:

    I congratulate you all in speaking out, but how many Americans follow this blog? Surely it needs more than seven scientists to speak out?

    It the FBI can announce the reopening of the investigation into the emails without any evidence that they exist, then surely NOAA and NASA should be warning about the imminent demise of the Arctic sea ice and its consequences for the climate of the Northern Hemisphere. Lose the Arctic sea ice and the Greenland ice sheet will not be far behind. What then are the prospects for Bangladesh and Florida?

    It is not just our children who will be affected. Anyone with a life expectancy of more than ten years is going to suffer the consequences of global warming, just as the Syrians and Californians are doing now. We can’t afford to have Trump in charge, when the garbage hits the fan!

  5. 5
    freetoken says:

    ” This is not an election about personalities,…” – Well, this election is about personalities. Elections almost always are, but this one in particular is about the personalities involved. Indeed, there appears to be nothing else at play on social media about this election but the nature of high-emotive reactions to the strong personalities. Debate about issues has been almost totally absent this year, and all the more so in regards to climate change.

  6. 6
    patrick says:

    Thank you for standing up with this well-reasoned presentation of facts. You lead with courage.

    I’m voting pro-IPCC all the way down the ballot, to include the smart energy candidate for the local public power board.

    > the world is holding its breath–You bet, and I’m holding mine, literally, on any number of occasions, due to air quality that is is so palpably poor. It doesn’t have to be that way.

    I hope that the wording of the energy ammendment on the ballot in Florida is remembered as nothing more than a record peak of stunt-speak:

    https://cleantechnica.com/2016/11/03/sharp-momentum-shift-anti-solar-amendment-1-ballot-initiative-florida/

    But the good news is accumulating faster than ever, as that site shows.

    Leonardo DiCaprio’s film has 9 million views since October 30. The first two and a half minutes is memorably brilliant–and so is Michael E. Mann. As those opening minutes show, DiCaprio was born with Anthopocene questions on his mind, so to speak.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=90CkXVF-Q8M

  7. 7
    Mary Ellen Cassidy says:

    THANK YOU.

  8. 8
    sidd says:

    I note a conspicuous omission in the author list. I take it the absentee is muzzled by his position ?

  9. 9
    Susan Anderson says:

    Before the Flood: Yes indeedy, I thought I knew what I would find in the diCaprio film, but it is terrific. Copying the link again. Do give yourself the full time and full screen and watch the whole thing without multitasking. The speech at the end is well done, many of the interviews informative, and the cameo with Piers Sellers terrific (regretfully no longer with us) with fabulous animations.

    Russell, it provides a partial answer to your question as well.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=90CkXVF-Q8M

    Remember that Cruz and Lamar Smith and Judicial Watch (also involved in other persecutions, notably Obama and both Clintons) have been attacking climate scientists, NOAA, and the temperature record.

    While once upon a time it was possible to disagree without being disagreeable, and even support, conscientious Republicans, the breed is now almost entirely absent from our elections.

    In order to have sound policy, it is necessary to put public servants in office, and that would be Democrats. Sad … I heard tell that James Hanson, Kerry Emanuel, and Richard Alley were once Republicans.

  10. 10
    Thomas says:

    Voter Polls show extreme antipathy for Congress across the board
    http://www.gallup.com/poll/1600/congress-public.aspx
    http://www.people-press.org/2015/05/21/negative-views-of-new-congress-cross-party-lines/
    http://www.pewresearch.org/data-trend/political-attitudes/congressional-favorability/

    Washington Can Lead: Unwashed Version – 26 October 2016 by James Hansen
    http://csas.ei.columbia.edu/2016/10/26/washington-can-lead-unwashed-version/

    (1) The word “bribes” in the following paragraph of my op-ed was changed to “politics”.

    So why did nations from Australia to Europe and states such as California adopt an ineffectual bureaucratic cap-and-trade system? In a word: bribes. Seven years ago, then Senator John Kerry admitted to me that fee-and-dividend was better, but, he said, in words that still ring in my ears, “I can’t get one vote for that.”

    Instead, liberals pushed for Waxman/Markey cap-and-trade, with every vote bought and paid for by giveaways to special interests, the bill stretching to over 2000 pages.

    Right-wing collaboration with the fossil fuel industry is obvious, but connivance of liberals is widespread. Soon after Dick Gephardt retired as the Democratic leader in the U.S. House of Representatives he began receiving $120,000 per quarter from Peabody coal for lobbying, almost half a million dollars per year from a single source. Once elected, our representatives feel entitled to become part of an elite class.

    Washington is broken. The system in Washington is rotten to the core. Sophisticated bribery reigns. The pharmaceutical industry, the big banks, the fossil fuel industry, and so on, all work the system with impunity.

    This business is so ingrained in Washington that a Presidential candidate sees nothing wrong in accepting $250,000 from big banks for a single talk. Campaign finance reform was once talked about seriously, championed by John McCain, a potential standard-bearer, as a true, indeed remarkable, American war hero.

    […]

    Democracy is alive. Indeed, it is our best hope. But we stand at a dangerous point in history. The public knows enough about the Washington mess that it will not tolerate it much longer. The old cleansing action, throwing out one party for the other, no longer works. Both parties are infected. If an alternative does not arise, public anxiety may produce dangerous extremism.

    That is why, in Sophie’s Planet, I argue that we must allow more than two parties to compete. The public is so fed up with the two ruling parties that a “Revolutionary” party could compete effectively while taking no funds from special interests. However, the current electoral situation in the U.S. is rigged to prevent success of a third party.

    The reason I mention this here is the existence of another important ballot initiative in the current elections, in Maine, for what is called “ranked” or “instant runoff” voting. In this system you are allowed to vote for several candidates in rank order, eliminating the chance that you lose your vote on a minor party candidate with little chance of winning.

    [ranked = preferential voting system]

    Truism goes: “If it ain’t broke, then don’t fix it.”

    And if it is broke, then what?

  11. 11
    Thomas says:

    On Aug 17, 2014 3:50 PM, “H” to “John Podesta”
    <hrod17@clintonemail.com> wrote: Note: Sources include Western intelligence, US intelligence and sources in the region.

    Quote: “we need to use our diplomatic and more traditional intelligence assets to bring pressure on the governments of Qatar and Saudi Arabia, which are providing clandestine financial and logistic support to ISIL and other radical Sunni groups in the region.”
    https://wikileaks.org/podesta-emails/emailid/14068

    This fact is an open secret – and yet it has still not been admitted to by any western government on earth nor the Obama Administration nor “H” herself in the last 2 years?

    Why does the USA support undemocratic kingdoms who have been sponsoring Islamist terror for over 20 years now?

    Now that’s a question “journalists” could be asking – but they do not.

    fwiw the info in the “H” email was a copy/paste from a Classified USG doc.
    It’s easy to prove that by using any part of the “text” to search for it online. You find it anywhere except on wikileaks and refs to wikileaks post 11th Oct 2016.

    Assange speaks about it here, as well as confirms again that Russia was not involved in any of the leaking of the Podesta or Clinton emails.

    UK: Clinton Foundation and IS funded from the same sources – Assange
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0ktchDCoLek&feature=youtu.be

    Extract is from a new Nov 2016 interview being released Sat 5th Nov 2016

    More confirmation here:
    U.S. Elections “November Chaos”: What You’re Not Being Told
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q-TRMobiiNQ

    Both Presidential candidates and their entire apparatus are seriously flawed and corrupt.

    As Jim Hansen says: “The system in Washington is rotten to the core. Sophisticated bribery reigns. Both parties are infected. If an alternative does not arise, public anxiety may produce dangerous extremism.”

    Clinton’s email in fact confirms was Pres Assad has been saying about the Syrian unrest and the so called ‘civil war’ since 2011 when it began. They did the exact same thing to Libya and in Ukraine.

    Seymour Hersch a Pulitzer prize winning journo like Woodward and Bernstein confirmed 2-3 years ago that the chemical weapons in Syria came from Turkey, provided to the “rebels” as “false flag” events to bring the US into the war. Hersch confirmed also that Obama knew this after the event and yet he has said nothing to the Public or the Voters.

    Putin and Russia knew it and that’s why they are in Syria. But all this must be “top secret” hey? Still, the public are gullible pawns as usual.

    Why does anyone ever believe the Mass Media without any thought?

    Due to Human Psychology:101 and information asymmetry we can all be so easily manipulated 24/7

  12. 12
    Chuck Hughes says:

    We have to at least win the Senate or it will be 4 more years of gridlock. It’s that simple. I think Hillary Clinton will win but without the Senate or the House in Democratic control it’s going to be a standoff. People do not generally understand the real threat of Climate Change. It certainly didn’t come up during the debates except when Hillary Clinton mentioned it.

    We have to win a majority in the Senate. We can’t even appoint a 9th Supreme Court Justice without that.

  13. 13
    pete best says:

    Its a great attempt by Leonardo, its a good message here as well.

  14. 14
    Ray Ladbury says:

    Russell,
    Ever hear of representative democracy?

    Reality is on the ballot. Vote for it.

  15. 15
    Stephen Pekar says:

    THANK YOU. I made it my facebook front cover. I just wish that the US Corporate media would pick this up.

  16. 16
    Debra Marple says:

    I awake, first thought… “This is really happening” Donald Trump could be our next Preaidenr! Voted early, Democratic all the way. Many friends here in Ohio and in close by WV are voting Trump and don’t give a damn about climate change. Many people in this neck of the woods say they don’t believe it and don’t care if it is true! How do you battle that attitude?

  17. 17
    Chris Dudley says:

    Worth noting that Jill Stein is the only candidate with an adequate climate policy.

  18. 18
    SecularAnimist says:

    Thank you.

  19. 19
    John E Pearson says:

    This might be slightly off-topic but I am curious if anyone knows what happened to flip the republican party to its current position regarding climate change. A decade ago they were running adds with Al Sharpton and Pat Robertson and Pelosi and Gingrich https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qi6n_-wB154 for example. At some point they made an about face. Gingrich calls that ad the “dumbest thing I’ve ever done.” I don’t believe he just sat down and concluded he’d erred. I figure somebody tore him a new one. Who? When? How?

  20. 20
    Ilma says:

    Lots of ‘coulds’, and consensus is just opinion. If it were fact, opinion wouldn’t be needed. There’s not a single shred of actual evidence that the small amount of a trace, colourless and harmless gas can do any of the catastrophic things claimed for it. “Metres of SLR”? No prospect of that whatsoever! This is just yet more unsubstantiated alarmism.

  21. 21
    Carolyn Herbert says:

    Americans need to realize you do not have to choose either Trump or Clinton. You may choose Jill Stein who supports the Paris agreement – choose what you do want, not just the least of the evils.

  22. 22
    t marvell says:

    For ironic reasons, a Trump presidency would more likely slow climate change more than a Clinton presidency. Trump’s announced economic and geo-political policies threaten economic disaster worldwide. That would reduce CO2 admissions far more than the Paris agreement.

  23. 23
    mike says:

    I voted for Jill Stein. I am in reliably blue state and my vote means nothing in terms of the outcome of presidential elections. My vote has meant nothing here in WA State since I arrived here from TX in 1977.

    Please don’t start with the Nader gave the 2000 election to Bush unless you are willing to address the 300K registered dems who voted for Bush in FL in that cycle.

    We are in dire climate situation and there is no chance of electing a president in this cycle who understands what needs to be done. I heard on NPR = This American Life program today that Hillary does not know how to use a personal computer, she can only use an obsolete Blackberry device. I try to imagine how disconnected I might be if I did not know how to use a personal computer.

    All that said, I sure that voter suppression and other swing state election tricks don’t give the race to Trump. It’s a dark time, but it’s almost over and then we can get back to the real work of trying to reduce CO2 and CO2e accumulation in the atmosphere.

    Even the republicans are going to figure out how important that is one of these days. I can hardly wait. My grandchildren can hardly wait.

    Warm regards all,

    Mike

  24. 24
    Mack says:

    #12 Debra Marple
    “I awake, first thought…”
    Debra, you need to awake, go to the window and look outside. Then honestly ask yourself…Is the weather and climate any different to when you were a kid.? (the conclusion you come to gets easier the older you get).
    Many people in your neck of the woods, “don’t believe it”, you say.
    Maybe these people have looked outside and asked themselves..how many more years of my life have to go by before I realise that man-made global warming is just a load of bollocks.

  25. 25

    On this very day, in 1965 – the President Johnson’s Science Advisory Committee released its report… it uses fairly clear language – all the studies are familiar – but certainly simplified or way too new – after all this is one of the earliest of the formal warnings. PDF is of the original document.

    > This day in Climate History November 5, 1965 : via D.R. Tucker – thnx Peter Sinclair & Daniel Betty—-
    > November 5, 1965: President Johnson’s Science Advisory Committee issues a report, “Restoring the Quality of Our Environment,” that cites the hazards of carbon pollution…. “We must rely on economic incentives to discourage pollution. Under this plan special taxes would be levied against polluters…..Carbon dioxide is being added to the earth’s atmosphere by the burning of coal, oil, and natural gas at the rate of 6 billion tons a year. By the year 2000 there will be about 25 percent more carbon dioxide in our atmosphere than at present. Exhausts and other releases from automobiles contribute a major share to the generation of smog. ” ….Read the original document at: http://dge.stanford.edu/labs/caldeiralab/Caldeira%20downloads/PSAC,%201965,%20Restoring%20the%20Quality%20of%20Our%20Environment.pdf

  26. 26
    Nemesis says:

    ” It’s the Economy, stupid!”

    – Bill Clinton

    That quote could have been from Trump as well, doesn’t matter. It’s the econmoy, live with it, die with it.

    Amen.

  27. 27
    Ron Larson says:

    One week ago, I was able to ask Michael Moore about this topic via skype after a showing of his new film “Michael Moore in TrumpLand”. (The movie is almost entirely about Hillary, not the Donald.) Michael replied that he wouldn’t make any effort to convince Trump about climate topics as Trump is already a believer; his “hoax” statements are simply more lies. Unfortunately, I don’t think this helps much being so close to the election – but I sure wish we had more proof of how Donald really feels. One debate question could have brought out a lot. Thanks to the 7 authors for their statement/recommendation. Ron

  28. 28
    patrick says:

    #2 Russell: Look again. Nobody’s telling you how to vote. They’re telling you what’s at stake. The strong analysis comes with source.

  29. 29
    Night-Gaunt49 says:

    When the system has been so corrupted that the US Supreme Court you know you are under assault from the inside out. There are those that don’t care the outcome no matter how destructive. As long as they can make a “profit” as they see it. They either think their wealth will protect them (they better prepare now) or they will be dead before anything gets “too” obvious even for them. Either way they will send us all to perdition with a smile on their face when the Earth has become a flooded hot house. I don’t see how we can convince them not to. They seem to have an “I don’t care about anyone else” attitude. And for a Plutocracy we have now, it has only just begun.

  30. 30
    Mal Adapted says:

    Debra Marple:

    Many friends here in Ohio and in close by WV are voting Trump and don’t give a damn about climate change. Many people in this neck of the woods say they don’t believe it and don’t care if it is true! How do you battle that attitude?

    Only by outvoting it.

  31. 31
    -1=e^iπ says:

    The claim “in the scientific community there is a long-standing consensus that humans are causing dangerous global warming” that is made is not supported by the corresponding link. The Cook et al. study demonstrates that there is a consensus on global warming occurring and that the majority is human caused, but not that it is dangerous.

    Seems to be a dishonest tactic to change the meaning of consensus to justify mitigation. There is a 97% consensus on climate changing being primarily anthropogenic, then be ambiguous about consensus to try to convince the reader that there is a consensus about warming being dangerous and that there is a 2 C target, even though no such 97% consensus exists for those 2 things.

  32. 32
    -1=e^iπ says:

    Out of curiousity, why did Gavin Schmidt not sign this but the other 7 contributors did? Is there a departure in agreement between Gavin and the other 7 contributors?

  33. 33
    Chris O'Neill says:

    #8 quoting James Hansen:

    So why did nations from Australia to Europe and states such as California adopt an ineffectual bureaucratic cap-and-trade system?

    Australia adopted a Carbon tax which was thrown out by voters at the subsequent election.

    The system in Washington is rotten to the core.

    The core of our political systems is voters. You can shift some blame onto others for successfully misleading voters but ultimately voters are the core.

  34. 34
    Peter Cannavo says:

    My article in the Huffington Post makes a similar point: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/peter-cannavo/longterm-impact-of-our-short_b_12790566.html

  35. 35
    Chris G says:

    Alastair,
    That is where we come in. Scientists, those who run and contribute to this site, others at NASA, NOAA, the Hadley Centre, their Japanese counterparts, and others too numerous to mention, have all been delivering the message for decades. It is up to everyday people, to convince other everyday people that we have a problem and it needs to be dealt with in a manner more realistic than pretending it does not exist.

  36. 36
    Thomas says:

    Where do people stand on the Dakota Access Pipeline… this election?
    short outtake from TYT showing Twitter comments by progressive politicians on #NoDAPL https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hPbvWG-Vnwg

    https://twitter.com/hashtag/nodapl

    I think Americans and all people lucky enough to have a Vote should vote their personal values and based on their current knowledge state. I don;t care who people vote for, not here not anywhere. It’s their business.

    But after the bs is over I do hope that everyone remembers what is said here Julian Assange talks to John Pilger (FULL INTERVIEW) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_sbT3_9dJY4

    and here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q-TRMobiiNQ

    I’m always hopeful that people will eventually reconsider that knowledge/info/facts with their values next time there’s an opportunity to join a protest march – be it on climate, the environment, anti-war or corporate & political corruption – no matter where they live – or what their level of education or IQ may be.

  37. 37
    Thomas says:

    Di Caprio’s doco is excellent, including the comments by Mike Mann
    here https://youtu.be/90CkXVF-Q8M?t=24m25s

    It’s interesting to note that the UN Secretary-General designated Leonardo DiCaprio as a UN Messenger of Peace – and not for the environment/climate change. That’s quite telling imo. Could AGW/CC really be more about Peace than the science/mitigation issues?

    So few in the west are aware of the triggers for the Syria disaster and ISIS go back to Saudi/Qatar’s $10 bln gas pipeline running through Syria and Turkey to Europe but that Assad was a holdout for an earlier agreement Syria had made with Iran for it’s major gas pipeline via Syria/Greece to Europe and the involvement of Russia in that option plus it’s pipelines via Turkey. It’s called an ‘open secret’ because these facts get zero attention by the MSM or politicians or environmentalists either.

    As the FBI agent ‘Deep Throat’ recommended in 1973 – “always follow the money!” However the money aspects can so easily be distorted into something else entirely that’s far more attention getting.

    such as this 9 point classified national security assessment made public in early Oct 2016
    “Note: Sources include Western intelligence, US intelligence and sources in the region about the Saudis and Qatari Governments.”
    Copied and sent Sent via email On Aug 17, 2014 https://wikileaks.org/podesta-emails/emailid/14068

    [I don’t know why Pt. 5 is missing in that email? – the content cannot be found anywhere else online except via this wikileaks source btw]

    Such matters truly do directly relate to other serious issues like the Keystone Pipleline and #NoDAPL protests today – for example see
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4LoGej6BqMc Hollywood actress and environmental activist Susan Sarandon talks to Evan Davis BBC about the civil resistance on the Dakota access pipeline and the US election.

    She says “people didn’t understand fracking for the longest time” – so true. People don’t understand a lot of things that are directly interrelated because they simply do not know about it as they live their busy lives. They have to rely on others be they climate scientists or the media or their friends.

    The multinational miners actually submitted applications for fracking in the inner suburbs of Sydney a cpl of years ago and these were being seriously considered by the NSW Govt. It’s amazing what people are willing to do for a $ and a share price.

    Luckily it was stopped and like in the US a nationwide protest movement was created called “Lock the Gate” in Oz. http://www.lockthegate.org.au/ It worked really well because ordinary people can make a difference to the political system and power brokers.

    But high profile people like Jim Hansen, Mike Mann, Saradon and Di Caprio really help a lot too.

    Here’s another Susan Sarandon Interview on TYT recently https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ngXuEVXjkWA (21mins)

    Who in the US and other developed nations know all about the race to frack all over Africa, and what are they doing about it besides Sarandon and handful of others? Or the ongoing destruction of the Indonesian and Brazilian Old Growth Rainforests, or the slow destruction of the GRB by acidification and mass bleaching events?

    Only a handful – these things are not an election issue anywhere in the rich Western nations. Neither is #NoDAPL or the legal rights of the Souix native Americans.

    Here’s another quality climate science energy people activist related doco from Oz recently released and info article worth knowing about and sharing.

    The Bentley Effect: Why community energy will power our future
    By Giles Parkinson on 28 October 2016
    http://www.thebentleyeffect.com/

    There is a moment towards the end of the newly-completed documentary The Bentley Effect that will cause politicians, fossil fuel developers and major corporations to wince: “We won,” says Meg Neilson, a former accountant and local landowner. “We took on the big boys and we kicked their arse.”

    The Bentley Effect chronicles the community fight against coal seam gas in the Northern Rivers [WHERE I LIVE AND WHERE JULIAN ASSANGE GREW UP], from early defeats to the resounding victory at Bentley, where more than 5,000 people gathered to show their opposition to a CSG drilling program by the listed company Metgasco.

    “This is a great moment for democracy and will resound around the planet, and we will continue to roll this invasive, unsafe and dirty industry backwards,” Ian Gaillard, a carpenter and one of the chief organisers, tells the film.
    http://reneweconomy.com.au/the-bentley-effect-why-community-energy-will-power-our-future-88819/

    Must be something in the water in these parts – thank goodness it isn’t methane. :-)

  38. 38
  39. 39
    nigel jones says:

    Thomas @8

    We have cap and trade in my country of New Zealand. The scheme is unwise in my view, but was adopted as the least likely to annoy business. Cap and trade by its nature is over complicated, ineffective lowest common denominator open to rorts, loopholes and abuse by all players involved especially the government that set it up. Virtually any alternative approach to mitigation would be preferable.

    Business has huge influence on politics in America and this creates all sorts of problems in my opinion. Of course they have business financing of campaigns with no limits and few controls. The Democrats tried to introduce legislation putting a cap on election finance, but it was struck down by the courts as unconstitutional. I used to admire Americas constitution but on deeper consideration it is leading to a sort of absurd situation in many regards.

    Regarding Trump versus Clinton. Trump and Clinton both have bad character, so it has to be decided on their policies. Clinton’s policies are just much more sensible overall, particularly on climate change. Not ideal but at least reasonable.

  40. 40
    Mike Roberts says:

    Excuse me. Is Hilary Clinton wedded to economic growth? If so, how would anyone expect her to achieve anything significant to mitigate climate change? I’m not sure any of the four candidates would sacrifice the holy economic growth to try to give our children a planet that’s habitable. So how should those with a vote cast that vote? Perhaps on other issues that are currently important to them?

  41. 41

    “could you please tell us how many of the 195 voted on the subject?”

    195, obviously. ;-)

  42. 42

    “I’m more concerned about the rise of Populism in Europe and the US, which seems intent on destroying all vestiges of Enlightenment ideas such as reason and logic. The death of science follows.”

    These problems are not independent. And climate change is an enormous threat to science itself, because it is a threat to the infrastructure and culture upon which it depends. To dismiss this as ‘piddling’ is foolish.

  43. 43

    Thanks for a statement that is appropriately clear and straightforward.

    My only point of disagreement is that IMO the question of “how another treated women” is also of extremely high importance. Misogyny is a cultural sickness that is pervasive, debilitating and (some, at least, have argued) linked in deep ways to our abuse of the biosphere. Hence Mr. Trump’s braggadocio about sexual assault is more than an issue of personal character; it’s a litmus test for who we are, and what our society should or should not be. Put bluntly, Trump is the candidate of traditional rape culture.

    Therefore, Trump’s treatment of women is not, in my view the best-chosen example of ‘less-crucial facets at stake’.

    However, I have to agree that while rape culture is an affront to fairness, a drag on society, even “a stench in the nostrils of Heaven” (to go metaphorical here), it is not an existential threat to humanity itself or even to civilization–obviously, since we’ve survived it for many millennia thus far. Climate change could be, since we are unable to effectively bound its potential risks as of now, and since we know that its effects will be all-pervasive and prone to unpredictable interactions involving the fundamentals of our environmental infrastructure.

    A moot point, I suppose, for the current situation, since it boils down not to which candidate to vote for, but why.

    US electors, get out there and kick the clowns to the curb. Please!

  44. 44
    Ray Ladbury says:

    negative_one,
    Gavin is a civil servant. Google the Hatch Act, and as a bonus see the FBI director’s actions violate it.

  45. 45
    Ray Ladbury says:

    Mack, I read your dismissal of climate change with great interest on the night of Nov. 6, at roughly the 40th parallel N to the sound of Summer insects. What planet does your window look out on?

  46. 46
    Ray Ladbury says:

    Carol Herbert: “Americans need to realize you do not have to choose either Trump or Clinton. You may choose Jill Stein…”

    Actually, no. You can’t.

  47. 47

    Several people in the comments stated that they had voted for the Green Party candidate Jill Stein. If other people are considering the same, please read my election blog post: Greens, progressives: No, Clinton and Trump are not the same.

  48. 48

    I 20: There’s not a single shred of actual evidence that the small amount of a trace, colourless and harmless gas can do any of the catastrophic things claimed for it.

    BPL: Ilma, please pick up a book on atmosphere physics and read through it. You are so completely wrong it’s alarming.

  49. 49

    M 24: man-made global warming is just a load of bollocks.

    BPL: No, but your post is. “Looking outside” is not really a substitute for field research and statistical analysis.

  50. 50
    Thomas says:

    24 Mack the Blind says: “… go to the window and look outside. Then honestly ask yourself…Is the weather and climate any different to when you were a kid.?

    Brisbane QLD is my home – it’s weather and climate were overtly different by 2000 versus the 1950s to the 1980s. In the 1960s in winter the majority of people used to wear gloves catching the train to work or school. IN the 1950s and 1960s the water pipes used to ice up and burst it was so cold in winter. In August the cold dry westerly winds used to blow like clockwork. None of that has happened since the 70s.

    By the 2000s the summer hail storms had stopped – that used to blow though from the SE (again like clockwork) during summer used to rip through southern Brisbane and the gold coast daily for weeks on end dumping rain and uprooting trees and destroying farm produce. in the early 2000s the same storm cells would begin and blow towards Brisbane, by the time they got there they had evaporated into nothingness, and Brisbane would remain dry for weeks on end through the hot early summers.

    The weather and the climate has also changed since I was a child on the Gold Coast, the hinterland and the northern rivers district around Byron Bay significantly. What used to be dripping wet rainforests and now dead, dying and dry as a bone for over 15 years now. That has noticeably changed since the early 1990s as well fro back in the 1960s.

    The Eskimos state the situation is even worse in far north Canada. The same degree of change have occurred across New Zealand. 50% of the GRB is dead or dying from bleaching and runoff and COT starfish and acidification. Shell fish stocks are collapsing in the cold waters of Tasmania now +5C summer temps higher than historical norms on avg that’s 2C.

    All along the eastern coast of Australia the casuarinas and other native trees are already and the few left are dying with the sand dunes being ripped away by storms. All these things are obvious and some have even been recorded by environmentalist etc.

    The Murray Darling Basin such a big ticket item for your ethereal Saint Jennifer Marohasy had a major record breaking winter rainfall and floods only this year = UNPRECEDENTED. South australian storms and tornadoes knocked over 22 high voltage power towers and shit down the entire states electricity network.

    Right now where I live in the northern rivers it is the DRIEST in living memory everywhere it;s brown and trees and shrubs are dying again. IT’s supposed to be raining constantly from sept to nov – that’s the NORMAL CLIMATE — there is nothing normal about anything here – Critical Fire Danger rating, strong gusting dry winds and everything is tinder dry when in the 1960s and the 1970s and the early 80s it would be wet and soaked and the everywhere Green vs Brown and Dead

    Mack: (the conclusion you come to gets easier the older you get).

    Only for some Mack, only for some. Some remain as dumb as dirt and as BLIND AS A BAT until the day they die.

    I believe that only an idiot needs a climate scientist or a peer-reviewed paper to tell then that the weather and climate is significantly different where they live than it was 30+ years ago!!!