Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Hot under the collar

In one of the grander displays of childish petulance seen of late, Sen. James Inhofe (R-I'm OK You're Not OK), fresh from his failed attempt to sandbag Al Gore during the recent Congressional hearing about global warming, is vowing to use parliamentary procedure to shut down a planned free concert at the Capitol designed to promote awareness of the issue. As a result, organizers are looking for another city to host the event.

I first mentioned the proposed concert, called "Live Earth," just over a month ago. Inhuffin'n'puffin bases his opposition on the laughable claim that it's a "partisan political event" even though the motion to allow for the use of the west lawn of Capitol was co-sponsored by Democrat Harry Reid and Republican Olympia Snowe. The real reason, it's easy to suspect, is to get back at Al Gore, who is promoting the concert in cooperation with Kevin Wall, the man who oversaw the promotion of Live Aid.

Senator In-a-huff is not alone in his inanity; it was Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell who objected to the request for unanimous consent for the Reid-Snowe request, putting the brakes on it.

Meanwhile, a few recent bits:

- According to a draft obtained by AP, the next installment of the IPCC's four-part report, due out next week, will say that
[t]he harmful effects of global warming on daily life are already showing up, and within a couple of decades hundreds of millions of people won't have enough water....

[T]ens of millions of others will be flooded out of their homes each year as the Earth reels from rising temperatures and sea levels....

Tropical diseases like malaria will spread. By 2050, polar bears will mostly be found in zoos, their habitats gone. Pests like fire ants will thrive.

For a time, food will be plentiful because of the longer growing season in northern regions. But by 2080, hundreds of millions of people could face starvation....
- Polar ice experts reported on Wednesday that a "Texas-sized piece" of the Antarctic ice sheet is thinning at a "surprisingly rapid" rate. They attributed it to a combination of several factors, including global warming, and said it could cause the world's oceans to rise significantly.

- Related to that, a new study in the peer-reviewed journal Environment and Urbanization, released Wednesday, says that
[m]ore than two-thirds of the world's large cities are in areas vulnerable to global warming and rising sea levels, and millions of people are at risk of being swamped by flooding and intense storms....
- Evidence says that climate change is already disrupting the habitats of many species.
Some of the world's most distinctive and biologically diverse climate regions – from South America's Andes Mountains to southern and eastern Africa and the US Southwest – may be drastically altered by century's end, endangering plant and animal life there, according to a new climate-modeling report....
- A reflection of that may be visible in the fact that
[i]ncreasing numbers of birds [of North America] are spending their winters further north in what experts say is a clear response to global warming. In one example, the sandhill crane, which normally spends its winters in the south of the US, has been spotted in Nova Scotia.

Experts say an examination of 30 years of data gathered by birders supports other evidence of climate change. Greg Butcher, of the National Audubon Society, said: "The American crow, the Carolina wren, the American robin, the eastern bluebird. They are all spending the winter farther north than they were 30 years ago."
- Finally, during that hearing, Senator Inhofe-his-rocker held up a picture of icicles in Buffalo and asked "Where's global warming when you need it har har har?"
Winter in the Northern Hemisphere this year has been the warmest since records began more than 125 years ago, a US government agency says.
NOAA declined to say it was "evidence of the influence of greenhouse gases," and, standing alone, it's not. But with 10 of the warmest years on record having occurred since 1995 and only two years of the last 27 being below the average temperature over the entire 125-year period, it is just one more nail in the coffin of James Inhofe's fantasies.

No comments:

// I Support The Occupy Movement : banner and script by @jeffcouturer / (v1.2) document.write('
I support the OCCUPY movement
');function occupySwap(whichState){if(whichState==1){document.getElementById('occupyimg').src=""}else{document.getElementById('occupyimg').src=""}} document.write('');