Year 2, Month 9, Day 19: The Words Are There. Will We Use Them?

The New Brunswick Telegraph Journal brings up the necessity of actually, you know, talking about climate change:

In the meantime, the reality of climate change marches on. Globally, 2010 was tied with 2005 as the hottest year on record. In Canada, 2010 was the hottest year on record. Extreme weather events across the globe – from Pakistan to Russia to Brazil to the U.S. – have led to misery, destruction, food shortages and loss of life.

And, for the record, global temperature data is indeed accurate: Distinct meteorological organizations around the world have independently noted identical global-warming trends. The climate impacts of sun spots and volcanoes are slight compared to the impacts of CO2 from human combustion of fossil fuel. Ninety-seven per cent of the world’s leading climate scientists do agree that human activity is a major contributor to global warming.

The reality of greenhouse gas emissions marches on too. Global emissions in 2010 were at their highest level ever.

It’s time to talk

In a recent interview, Al Gore reflected that the U.S. civil rights movement. It was finally won when everyday people dared to stand up against racism in everyday conversations. Gore suggests the same strategy is needed to overcome the proliferation of misinformation on climate change. Everyday people would pave the way for real action.

In other words, we need to talk.

Sent September 14:

The corporate climate-change denialist machinery has been going full tilt for well over a decade by now, casting doubt on the integrity of scientific experts with one manufactured non-scandal after another. Unfortunately, many people have fallen for their spurious claims, swallowing the petroleum industry’s position hook, line and sinker. Those so-called “skeptics” who are found everywhere from talk radio to online comment threads are as far from actual skepticism as it’s possible to get. They know the “truth”; factuality and evidence be damned.

Meanwhile, of course, the atmospheric CO2 count continues to climb, exacerbating the greenhouse effect that is making our planet heat up, which in turn is making the weather, um, livelier: heavier rains, deeper snows, drier droughts, more devastating storms. It’s true: if we fail to address climate change, we are ever likelier to fail as a species. Everybody’s doing something about the weather — but nobody’s talking about it.

Warren Senders

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