Year 4, Month 8, Day 30: And The Countdown Begins!

The Washington Post is moving slowly to atone for decades of George Will columns:

NEXT MONTH, the international arbiter of the scientific consensus on global warming will release its latest evaluation of the state of the research. A few will dismiss the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) findings as overwrought alarmism. But a draft leaked to reporters last week indicates that, for most people, the report will serve as another stern warning about the risks of continuing to pump carbon dioxide into the air.

The scientists are set to claim that the increasing amount of greenhouse gases that humans have emitted into the atmosphere has almost certainly been the chief driver of the warming of the planet over the past half-century, a finding to which they ascribe 95 percent confidence. That’s the level of likelihood researchers typically consider robust enough to justify drawing very strong conclusions.

Grim. August 27:

The question is not whether humanity’s complex industrial civilization has caused a radical reconfiguration of Earth’s climate. That was resolved long ago, and the answer was “Yes”; the IPCC’s new report is just statistical icing on a well-baked cake of certainty. The real question is how long it’s going to take for this new climatic reality to radically reconfigure the attitudes of those with deeply vested financial and political interests in denial.

It’d be nice to think that the encroaching realities of climate change — burgeoning wildfires, rising ocean levels, increasingly severe storms, historically unprecedented droughts — would be persuasive enough. But it is inherent in the nature of paranoid thinking that mere evidence is inadequate. The only way these politicians will change their entrenched anti-science attitudes is for their corporate sponsors to recognize that rejection of climatological evidence will negatively impact profit margins. Civilizational collapse is bad for business.

Warren Senders

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