Monday, June 23, 2008


James Hansen tries once again to sound the alarm about global warming. It been twenty years since he testified to Congress about the science, the risk, and what can be done. His current message is simple, we must act now. Since his twenty year old testimony, the US has done everything conceivable to make things worse.

This is no coincidence, political power has more and more come under the control of the fossil fuel industry (see Kevin Phillips' American Theocracy). Hansen addresses this specifically:

Special interests have blocked transition to our renewable energy future. Instead of moving heavily into renewable energies, fossil companies choose to spread doubt about global warming, as tobacco companies discredited the smoking-cancer link. Methods are sophisticated, including disguised funding to shape school textbook discussions.

CEOs of fossil energy companies know what they are doing and are aware of long-term consequences of continued business as usual. In my opinion, these CEOs should be tried for high crimes against humanity and nature. If their campaigns continue and "succeed" in confusing the public, I anticipate testifying against relevant CEOs in future public trials.

Conviction of ExxonMobil and Peabody Coal CEOs will be no consolation, if we pass on a runaway climate to our children. Humanity would be impoverished by ravages of continually shifting shorelines and intensification of regional climate extremes. Loss of countless species would leave a more desolate planet.

His goal, and ours, if we still have any brains, is to reduce the CO2 count in the atmosphere from the current 385 ppm, to 350 ppm.

Read the article, because there are specific policy actions and goals that are definitely doable.

But it will never be done under the control of the current cabal. Needless to say, the goal is also incompatible with our current 'grab the oil fields' foreign policy, which is failing, but still being pursued. And this foreign policy is still supported by both parties, and both presidential candidates. If they won't wake up, we better.
(h/t Jonathan Schwarz)


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