environment Politics: assholes denialists U.S. Chamber of Commerce
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The Chillicothe Times-Bulletin (IN) has a good column by a chap named Bill Knight, who calls out the deniers nicely:
However, deniers and apologists remain bold. If they’re ostriches hiding heads in sand, they’re powerful birds. Fox News still tries to legitimize those who deny the evidence, (recently airing a British tabloid’s story based on a report by a U.K. agency — which criticized the broadcast as misleading). Besides disinformation, the most disturbing reaction has been from corporations and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. Exxon Mobil CEO Rex Tillerson suggests that humans will just adapt to changed climate, saying, “Changes to weather patterns that move crop production areas around — we’ll adapt to that.”
The Chamber in a brief filed with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency urged officials not to regulate carbon: “Should the world’s scientists turn out to be right and the planet heats up,” the Chamber wrote, “populations can acclimatize to warmer climates via a range of behavioral, physiological and technological adaptations.”
More sensible insights come from environmentalist and journalist Bill McKibben, who recently warned about Earth facing three crucial numbers: 2 degrees Celsius (or 3.6 Fahrenheit), the maximum increase in global temperatures that the planet can tolerate; 565 gigatons (a gigaton is 1 billion metric tons), the most carbon dioxide that can be released into the air by midcentury and remain below that 2-degree mark; and 2,795 gigatons, the amount of proven reserves of coal, oil and gas available for burning.
Rupert Murdoch and all those in his sphere of influence are doing irreparable damage to our collective future. Sent November 9:
Conservative groups like the U.S. Chamber of Commerce use a lot of doublespeak when they try to explain away the frightening facts of the climate crisis. What on Earth do they mean when they assert that humanity can adjust to a radically transformed climate “via a range of behavioral, physiological and technological adaptations”?
“Behavioral adaptations” like car-pooling or recycling are worthy activities, to be sure, but they’re inadequate coping strategies for a world that’s drastically hotter and racked by catastrophic weather events. Is the Chamber actually just telling us to run for the hills? And how will “technological adaptations” like electric cars or wind turbines protect us against extreme droughts and superstorms? “Physiological adaptation” is easy to understand. It’s an Orwellian euphemism for dying in large numbers.
If our species is to prosper in the coming centuries, we must stop denying and distorting the facts of the climate emergency.