Weatherdem's Weblog

Bridging climate science, citizens, and policy

2010 Earth Day Poll: Better Results Than 2007?!

13 Comments

In surveying different articles discussing Earth Day, I ran across these poll results.  I have to be honest, they don’t make much sense.

Only 49% of respondents think the environment will be worse for the next generation.  Only 3 short years ago, 57% held the same view.

In contrast, 16% now think it will be better, up from 11% 3 years ago.

Seriously?  What magical wand was waved in the last 3 years that would lead people to believe the environment they’re leaving for the next generation will be better than it is today.  I could write a very long list of the things that are getting worse by the year, yet fewer people today think the next generation will have a worse environment than today’s.

This is simply stunning.  Or perhaps not – people that are free to choose the policy that means most to them or needs the most work do not choose the environment or catastrophic climate change as their top issue.  Those issues are lucky to combine to garner double digit percentages of respondents.

The reason is the success of the disinformation/propaganda effort perpetrated on the American public in the past 40 years by the dirty energy industry.  “There is no climate crisis,” they tell us.  It seems to be working.  Combine that with the perception that a Democrat in the White House is enough to change the environment all by itself and you get nonsensical poll results like this.  Don’t worry about the lack of legislation, Americans.  After all, signing legislation into law is the only thing that has brought about the successes of the whole Earth Day movement in the first place.

The simple truth is that the next generation will be very lucky indeed if their environment isn’t a catastrophe.  If people still live their lives in more or less the same way they do today, a monumental victory will have been achieved.  What we’re doing to the planet is truly frightening.  Ignorance really is bliss.

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13 thoughts on “2010 Earth Day Poll: Better Results Than 2007?!

  1. Disinformation/propoganda eh?

    Are you sure its not just people waking up and looking at the evidence themselves.

    Well read my blog: http://www.rogerfromnewzealand.wordpress.com

    It most certainly does not agree with your views.

    You are most welcome to leave a message there if you disagree (or agree) with the facts referenced therein.

    Because the insecurities of sites such as yours usually show up in their refusal to publish any opinions except those that agree with the owners views,I have recently got into the habit of publishing my comments (such as this one) on another blog of mine, just in case you have some inhibition about publishing contrary views on your own blog.
    Feel welcome to check it out as well.

    http://www.globalwarmingsupporter.wordpress.com

    Cheers

    Roger

  2. People don’t look at the evidence themselves – that’s the point of my post.

    The Medieval Warm Period, from 950 to 1250 AD, largely affected the land masses around the North Atlantic and didn’t produce record warmth globally. It was the previous warmest period if you look back in time, true. The Medieval Warm Period was about 0.1-0.2°C cooler than the 1961-1990 global mean. Temperatures in the 1990s were ~0.3°C warmer than the 1961-1990 mean and temperatures in the 2000s were ~0.2°C warmer than the 1990s.

    The record temperatures of the 2000s would not have been possible if global cooling were occurring. Most projections made in the IPCC reports to date have occurred faster and at larger magnitudes than were projected. The only knock on the IPCC then is their predictions are too conservative. They’re leaving the public without critical information that it could use to pressure policy makers.

  3. Thanks for visiting my blog, but I seriously suggest you read it a little more carefully.
    You will note it is carefully referenced and I suggest you check those out.

    In your reply you made a number of un-referenced assertions which definitely require some justification.
    I for one am interested on which authority or reasoning you are relying upon.

    Cheers

    Roger

    • I read your blog the first time, thank you very much. Calling it ‘carefully referenced’ is being very charitable. You provide links to anecdotes and opinions that sort of dance around the point you’re trying to make – that it might have been warmer in select locations than it is today, but no discussion on why this might have been. I don’t see anything demonstrating conclusively that the global temperatures in the Medieval Warm Period were equal to or higher than they are today. After all, local conditions are not the same thing as global climate.

      Nor do I see any explanation for why global temperatures in 2009 were the second highest on record (higher than 1998, a year most deniers like to claim global “cooling” began) despite a continued solar minimum and a La Nina in effect to begin the year.

      What this boils down to though is this: there are conditions under which I would acknowledge climate change is not occurring as quickly as I would currently characterize. Are there any conditions under which you would possibly acknowledge climate change is occurring at all?

      You ask for authority and reasoning. Given such a request, I assume you haven’t read any other posts on this blog, many of which detail references and reasoning. Is there actually a citation I could provide or a thread of reasoning I could present that would lead you to acknowledge the existence of global warming? Because if not, you’re not going to convince me that climate change isn’t already occurring. I have read hundreds of peer-reviewed journal papers detailing the evidence and reasoning. Links on a blog aren’t going to overturn the professional work I’ve encountered.

      Likewise, if you can’t come up with potential citations or reasoning that establishes a confidence in you about the possibility of catastrophic climate change, this blog certainly is not going to convince you.

  4. weatherdem
    I am not the least surprised by the tenor of your reply.
    Please note for a start that I have treated your blog with respect without any resort to name calling or other emotional criticism.
    However it is certainly within the realm of good manners to require the sources of your assertions.
    I hate to tell you old chap that it looks like you don’t know yourself-it appears that you are repeating what someone has told you without ascertaining for yourself the truth.
    Who said the following then? “People don’t look at the evidence themselves – that’s the point of my post.”

    I hope you don’t mind if I give you some references that IF YOU ARE HONEST WITH YOURSELF will make you seriously doubt your above assertions.
    1) Was the Medieval Warm Period Local.
    Here are a few of the thousands of studies and references that assert otherwise
    I take it you looked at the links about Greenland, Switzerland, Greenland ice cores and the US on my blog. Well here is an anecdotal one about Spain.

    http://tenthmedieval.wordpress.com/2010/01/09/darn-climate-sceptics-get-out-of-my-field/

    Of course the medieval warm period shows up in other literature as well, such as

    http://ruby.fgcu.edu/courses/twimberley/EnviroPhilo/CookPalmer.pdf

    or if you want to read “Grove, J.M. 988:The little ice age.by methuen.
    Warm periods are well documented by other cultures eg http://www.springerlink.com/content/gh98230822m7g01l/ etc where the historical history of China’s climate is examined.
    Medieval warming and earlier periods are even suggested in the Antarctic Ice core project and the Pacific Warm Pool

    http://www.pages.unibe.ch/products/newsletters/2009-1/special%20section/science%20highlights/Bentley+Hodgson_2009-1(28-29).pdf

    2) Was the Medieval Warm Period Warmer than today?
    Well although I am generally careful to steer clear of the IPCC reports as they are rapidly being exposed as somewhat less than reliable because clangers that have emerged recently and reviews like this one http://co2realist.com/2010/04/18/ipcc-report-card/ , check out the excerpt on my blog from the 1990 IPCC reports. http://rogerfromnewzealand.wordpress.com/porky-no-3-ipcc-attempts-to-change-history/ Actually this is of some embarrasment to them and it was removed without explanation and replaced by the Mann graphs. The CRU emails also appear to discuss ways to explain away their earlier “Mistake”.
    The graph http://rogerfromnewzealand.files.wordpress.com/2010/01/holocene_delta_t_and_delta_co2_full2.jpg which is drawn from work by Nasif Nahle which in turn is carefully referenced (references also included in my blog) also shows the MWP as being considerably warmer than the present.
    Should you have taken the trouble to read my blog carefully you would also know there is archaeological evidence which shows that the MWP had to be warmer than at present. Such as the permafrost still present at Gården under Sandet http://www.expressnews.ualberta.ca/article.cfm?id=776 where in Viking times there had been a dairy farm for many years and the archaeological evidence at Schnidejoch where the retreating glacier shows that the route was used intensively in past epochs. http://www.welt.de/print-welt/article177591/Steinzeitliche_Handelswege.html
    3) Is there Global Warming?
    Maybe, maybe its over who knows. What the real question is why we should blame CO2 for it. Sure our planet needs nuturing and we need to look after and remedy a myriad of issues which our carelessness has endowed on this earth, but chase CO2?
    The point of my blog which you seem to have missed is that if there have been a number of warmings (and coolings) in the historical past and others before (which most certainly had nothing to do with CO2, where is the FACTUAL evidence which shows that this time round it is because of CO2. All we have is a hypothesis “Anthropogenic CO2 causes Global Warming”, a lot of modeling based on this assumption, but not one shred of empirical evidence to prove the hypothesis. Instead we have a lot of evidence which disproves the hypothesis.
    CO2 is a friendly gas. 280ppmv is not a dangerous concentration to our health. http://www.hydrofarm.com/articles/co2_enrichment.php http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carbon_dioxide and the world would be a better and more fertile place at a concentration of as much as 1,000ppmv

    Why am I interested in the subject of Global Warming?
    It is because I am an Economist, the skills and understanding of which enables me to understand the rapid consequences to the HUMANS on this planet should we proceed with the IPCC CO2 emmission reduction guidelines.
    This threat, in the opinion of any main stream economist, is the greatest threat ever to face mankind. Far surer than what we are told about the effects of Global Warming.
    I am preparing a blog to show this, but if you have any concern for humanity perhaps you will direct your research to these economic effects and the likely effects on yourself and your family and community.
    “People don’t look at the evidence themselves”
    Well this person and many others have, and this is an example of the answers they are finding.

    Cheers

    Roger

    • Interesting to note ‘Because the insecurities of sites such as yours…'; ‘IF YOU ARE HONEST WITH YOURSELF'; ‘Should you have taken the trouble to read my blog carefully’ is treating my ‘blog with respect without any resort to name calling or other emotional criticism’. Thank you for clearing that up for me. I will point out again that I have a number of posts on this blog which are extensively referenced. I know because I took the time to do it. I encourage you, if you’re that interested in references to their original sources, to read more posts.

      I note that you answered none of my questions. That’s okay, I really didn’t expect you to. I haven’t interacted with a climate change denier to date that has answered them, which is very telling. None of the materials on your blog rise to the level of peer-reviewed science. As you yourself note, there are plenty of anecdotes, which don’t do a lot to convince me of the opposite of what peer-reviewed science has painstakingly assembled.

      It is unsurprising though disappointing to learn that another economist considers emission reduction plans to present more of a threat to humans than does catastrophic climate change. Interestingly, there were plenty of economists who argued against related plans in the recent past. Guess what – economies didn’t collapse after they were implemented. That’s more than can be said for what is likely to happen if nothing is done to rein in greenhouse pollution.

      I would recommend you think about the question I posed above: Is there actually a citation I could provide or a thread of reasoning I could present that would lead you to acknowledge the existence of global warming? Admonishing me to read more of your links in no way answers that question.

  5. 1. above answered the first question you posed complete with references.
    2. above answers the second question in your comment completely with references.

    “It is unsurprising though disappointing to learn that another economist considers emission reduction plans to present more of a threat to humans than does catastrophic climate change”

    I suggest you do some study in that area. My new blog will certainly cover it when it is ready.

    “Is there a citation or reference that you could present to acknowledge the existance of global warming?”
    A. I did not deny there may be global warming.
    B. My mind is open and if my memory serves me right, I have been asking you for citations to support your views in this post for three comments before this and have not even received a bad one yet.
    In fact you have managed to say nothing at all so far, so the question is why should I or anyone else respect your opinions so far?

    If there are other questions hidden in your unsupported assertions please be more specific.

    Incidently “climate change denier ” for your information is an example of the name calling I mentioned above. It is actually a way to categorise someone so you can ignore their uncomfortable arguments. I could return the complement but I consider it beneath me.

    Its interesting that you seem unwilling to answer MY questions with anything but unsupported statements. To say my references are not up to peer review standard when you are unable to provide ANY is a little rich to say the least.

    So far, because your inability to provide ANY support for your assertions on my request, I and other readers must simply assume that you have none and therefore your writing is completely void of substance.

    Cheers

    Roger

    • Roger, you assume far too much.

      I have studied the area of emission reduction plans. Economic groups without an ideological axe to grind the world over have found the benefits to far, far outweigh the costs in the long-term. Anyone who argues against emission reduction plans then is really arguing for higher long-term costs and higher emissions – resulting in a weaker economy and a radically different climate. Moreover, a growing number of businesses understand the difference between short-term and long-term viability. Guess what – they’re choosing to call for the emissions reductions scientists have recommended. They haven’t bought into any conspiracy theory; they haven’t been taken over by wild eyed enviros; they’ve all independently and closely examined the costs and benefits of how proposed actions to limit emissions would impact their business – and more and more have come to the conclusion that the proposals make sense.

      Mince words all you want. Arguing that today’s climate features temperatures lower than that of past periods and calling into question the basic physical reaction of radiation and gases as the proximate cause of higher temperatures today is denying global warming. I have references spread across this blog. I will not assemble them in a cute little package for you or anyone else. You can either do a little clicking and find them or not – the choice is yours. There’s even a third choice. You can read what I have to write over a period of time and I’ll provide additional references for you then. Nowhere on this blog have I demanded or even asked for you to respect my “opinions”, which are actually empirically-based conclusions shared by the vast majority of professional scientists across the world. You say you don’t consider IPCC-related material to be valid. Can you tell me which part of the 2007 report contained error and which part didn’t?

      Your post was filled to the brim and over with categorizations of people. I’ll let you draw whatever conclusion you want from that.

      Am I and my readers supposed to assume that you have submitted your blog post, or any other blog post, to a peer-reviewed journal? You went to all that trouble to carefully reference everything you’ve written. Perhaps you might share with us which journals you’ve submitted your manuscript to? Or have they published it already? I admit there are a lot of journals out there. Perhaps I missed yours amongst all the other articles I have read.

      Assume anything you want, Roger. The point of this blog is not for me to hold your hand or anyone else’s. I provide up-to-date analysis and commentary on a multitude of scientific subjects. But since everything here is void of substance in your opinion, I’m sure you’ll never waste your time here again.

      Good day.

  6. Weatherdem

    “I provide up-to-date analysis and commentary on a multitude of scientific subjects. But since everything here is void of substance in your opinion, I’m sure you’ll never waste your time here again.”

    For the first time you have said something justifiable.

    You are absolutely right.

    In spite of your claim

    “I have read hundreds of peer-reviewed journal papers detailing the evidence and reasoning.”

    (which I don’t believe in the slightest), although I have quite reasonably requested several times, you are unable to back up anything you say with some relevant references.

    Your whole post therefore is indeed meaningless.

    “People don’t look at the evidence themselves – that’s the point of my post.”

    Maybe you should heed your own advice, I think you are simply a religious zealot and have no actual facts backing your opinions whatsoever.

    Cheers

    Roger

  7. PS these comments and my opinions are posted at http://globalwarmingsupporter.wordpress.com
    Cheers

  8. Isn’t it interesting how Deniers project their personal shortcomings onto people who understand climate science? It does make sense, of course, that someone who grew up immersed in a strict religious setting would throw out the ‘religious zealot’ (I totally love that one, btw!) label as part of their emotional outbursts. Such a label is thrown around more and more often of late, which means deniers have observed similar behavior on the science blogs they enjoy trolling and decide they too should lob what they view as insults at those they disagree with.

    A newer phenomenon is copying trollish comments for the sake of … posterity. I suppose if someone really wants their allies to know how bitter and non-constructive they are, that’s certainly one way to make sure that happens.

    I suppose one of the more interesting things I’ve learned recently is the length to which some Deniers will go to spread their disinformation, propaganda, baseless accusations and holier-than-thou attitudes as far as they possibly can. I’m not entirely certain what they hope to accomplish, but I get the distinct sense it’s not working. By all means, keep it up though. :)

  9. Haha,

    Well my friend, resort to name calling because you seem unable to reason, in spite of me giving you every invitation.
    After all you are the one who said “People dont look at the evidence themselves”
    I did not realize at first you were including yourself.
    Cheers

    Roger

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