While Americans support action on climate change, many don’t see the issue as an immediate threat and so the issue does not elicit the powerful responses necessary for Americans to mobilize, argues sociologist Doug McAdam.
President Donald Trump on June 1 took the dramatic step of removing the U.S. from the Paris climate agreement – the product of many years of diligent and difficult negotiation among 175 nations around the world. Recent polls reveal that six in 10 Americans oppose Trump’s move.
In the early 15th century the Ming Dynasty in China undertook a series of expensive oceangoing expeditions called the Treasure Voyages.
Even before the Paris Agreement was signed in December 2015, market forces and policy measures were starting to tilt the world toward a lower-carbon future. U.S. carbon dioxide emissions peaked in 2007, and Chinese emissions may have peaked in 2014.
The conventional wisdom that the United States should remain under the Paris Agreement is wrong. A US withdrawal would be the best outcome for international climate action.
Until recently, weather talk was an easy filler for any awkward silence. But tragically for polite conversationalists everywhere, the weather is no longer mundane.
Towns and villages along the east coast of England were put on red alert on Friday 13 January.
A new detailed, easily navigable opinion map clarifies what people in each county, city, and even congressional district in the United States believe about climate change.
New York Attorney General's office discovers secondary email while investigating company's climate science cover-up
President-elect Trump has called global warming “bullshit” and a “Chinese hoax.” He has promised to withdraw from the 2015 Paris climate treaty and to “bring back coal,” the world’s dirtiest, most carbon-intensive fuel.
"Scientists are right to preserve data and archive websites before those who want to dismantle federal climate change research programs storm the castle"
The wonders of NASA — Mars rovers, astronaut Instagram feeds, audacious missions probing distant galactic mysteries — have long enthralled the American public.
The man who called global warming a fabrication invented by the Chinese to make US manufacturing less competitive is now president-elect of the US.
Movie buffs will recognize this title as the most memorable line from “A Few Good Men” (1992), spoken by the character Colonel Jessep, played by Jack Nicholson (“You can’t handle the truth!” is #29 in the American Film Institute’s list of 100 top movie quotes).
It should be a momentous occasion for the environment. In early October 2016, 55 countries with 55% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions ratified the Paris climate change agreement.
Over breakfast at our riad in old town Marrakech, conversation was dominated by Donald Trump’s election victory and what kind of world we had woken up to.
When Secretary Hillary Clinton sought to mobilize millennial voters, she held a rally with Al Gore in Florida and focused heavily on climate change.
President…Donald…Trump. For those on both sides of the aisle who vowed “Never Trump!,” that’s going to take some getting used to.
Not only is climate change bad for the planet, but rising temperatures could mean politicians face a greater risk of being voted out of office.
Exxon Mobil announced on Oct. 28 that it may have to take the largest asset write-down in its history. The company said that 4.6 billion barrels of oil and gas assets – 20 percent of its current inventory of future prospects – may be too expensive to tap.
As scientists become more gloomy about keeping global warming below the allegedly “safe” limit of 2℃, the issue is disappearing from the US presidential debates.
Many mini-dramas develop during major disasters like Hurricane Matthew, which has left a trail of devastation in the Caribbean and the southeastern United States.
Leading scientists say most people remain unaware of the truth that climate change is a stark reality now and will continue to get worse without drastic action.
Forest fires in the Amazon region are reaching record levels as Brazil’s government fails to tackle the deforestation that fuels the country’s high rate of emissions.
The Paris climate agreement set a “safe” global warming limit of below 2℃, aiming below 1.5℃ by 2100. The world has already warmed about a degree since the Industrial Revolution, and on our current emissions trajectory we will likely breach these limits within decades.
The recently elected One Nation senator from Queensland, Malcolm Roberts, fervently rejects the established scientific fact that human greenhouse gas emissions cause climate change, invoking a fairly familiar trope of paranoid theories to propound this belief.
Given that 2016 is expected to be the hottest year on record, with several months that not only surpassed old heat records but did so by increasingly large margins, it stands to reason climate change should be an issue we as a nation are rushing to address.
"Getting the social cost of carbon right is most pressing, given its importance to policy," says Charles Kolstad. "It's also an area where rapid research progress should be possible."
Ocean acidification is causing fundamental and dangerous changes in the chemistry of the world’s oceans yet only one in five Britons has even heard of ocean acidification, let alone believes it a cause for concern.
For two weeks this May, organizers across 12 countries will participate in Break Free 2016, an open-source invitation to encourage “more action to keep fossil fuels in the ground and an acceleration in the just transition to 100 percent renewable energy.”
One of the biggest threats to a thriving world today is that the world’s poorest people face disproportionate risk from climate change. The World Bank’s Turn Down the Heat report notes that climate change threatens to erode progress made on reducing poverty.
The title of this piece should instead be: how to weather the next few years of stupid politics over climate change while watching the oceans rise, acidify, and lose oxygen, and while watching extreme drought, forest fires, and weather slap us upside the head.
Representatives of Australian coastal communities have gathered this week to discuss the major challenges they face. Delegates at the conference in Rockingham, Western Australia, represent 40 councils around Australia, some falling within the 24 federal electorates held by a margin of 5% or less.
Despite the Republican US presidential candidate’s claim that climate change is a hoax, a new survey has found that more than half of his supporters believe global warming is happening.
Worsening wildfires endanger communities. Invasive insects imperil forests. In the American West, many worry about these threats — but fewer fret about climate change, a major force behind both the burning and the bugs. Why? Apparently, because lots of people don’t see the local connection. Polling residents of eastern Oregon
By putting a temporary halt to Obama’s cornerstone climate policy, the Supreme Court puts the next president in the driver’s seat. Earlier this week, the U.S. Supreme Court decided to halt, at least temporarily, implementation of one of the central components of the federal effort to constrain U.S. climate emissions, the Clean Power Plan.
Volcanic eruptions that triggered climatic extremes could have heralded deadly plague and famine in Europe and undermined the Roman empire.
An environmental activist friend of mine recently shook her head and marveled at the extraordinary accomplishments of the last several months. “Still lots of work to be done,” she said. “But wow! This has been an epic period for environmentalists!”
In the lead-up to the Paris climate change summit, US President Barack Obama recently said “We only get one planet. There’s no Plan B”. Of course he’s right – there’s no other planet we can retreat to. Obama’s statement emphasized the urgent need for international agreement in Paris to minimize human-caused climate change and its impacts.
Analysts say the world’s 20 leading economies give nearly four times as much in subsidies to fossil fuel production as total global subsidies to renewable energy.
North of the 49th parallel, Canadian voters turfed the decade-old government of Stephen Harper. With close ties to the Albertan oil industry, Prime Minister Harper was an established friend of fossil fuel. As leader of the former Canadian Alliance Party, Harper in 2002 had gone as far as to describe the Kyoto Protocol as a “socialist scheme to suck money out of wealth-producing nations.”
More than three out of four Americans—or 76 percent—now believe that climate change is occurring. The number is up from 68 percent just one year ago, but partisan politics are still a huge factor in how people respond.
It’s a big few weeks at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The EPA issued a regulation clarifying its authority to regulate bodies of water throughout the country. This week it issued an “endangerment finding,” a precursor to a regulation governing carbon emission from aircraft.
Converting the world’s entire energy infrastructure to run on clean, renewable energy could effectively fight ongoing climate change, eliminate air pollution deaths, create jobs, and stabilize energy prices.
This summer, Pope Francis plans to release an encyclical letter in which he will address environmental issues, and very likely climate change.
To detoxify the debate over climate change, we need to understand the social forces at work. To reach some form of social consensus on this issue, we must recognize that the public debate over climate change in the United States today is not about carbon dioxide and greenhouse gas models; it is about opposing cultural values and worldviews through which that science is viewed.
The climate debate seems to be as polarised as ever. While joint political pledges offer some hope that climate change no longer has to be a partisan issue, a look at the comments below most articles on global warming says otherwise.
If we want to use scientific thinking to solve problems, we need people to appreciate evidence and heed expert advice. But the Australian suspicion of authority extends to experts, and this public cynicism can be manipulated to shift the tone and direction of debates. We have seen this happen in arguments about climate change.
There are many complex reasons why people decide not to accept the science of climate change. Climate scientists, myself included, have strived to understand this reluctance. We wonder why so many people are unable to accept a seemingly straight-forward pollution problem. And we struggle to see why climate change debates have inspired such vitriol.
The climate science might be gloomy but at least governments seem to be doing something about it. But this is only half the story. Side by side with policy initiatives designed to cut greenhouse gas emissions have come new policies that have the opposite effect: increased emissions.
I’ve heard it many a time, and you probably have too. It’s supposedly the trump card to any argument on addressing climate change globally: “Yeah, but what’s the point? Isn’t China building a new coal plant every week?”
Naomi Klein’s third attack on capitalism, This Changes Everything, has put the urgency of climate change front and centre.
Each of the 125 leaders attending the New York climate summit this week has been given four minutes to speak to the world. They (or their aides) may well have dipped into the climate literature to add scientific ballast to their speeches.
A report published ahead of the 2014 UN Climate Summit illustrates that poor and prosperous nations, tiny islands and great cities, can achieve all their energy needs from renewables.
On August 28, 1963, 200,000 people swarmed into the nation’s capital for one of the most iconic moments in the civil rights movement: the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. More often remembered today simply as the March on Washington, it was seen by many as a turning point for the civil rights movement, which helped spur passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act and 1965 Voting Rights Act.
Transportation continues to generate a large proportion of emissions worldwide, even as emissions from other areas of the economy fall. In the EU, transport accounts for around 30% of CO2 emissions, and is rising. It’s the transport sector that is set to derail the EU’s overall emission reduction objectives.
Bill McKibben, an activist who has dedicated his life to saving the planet from environmental collapse, talks about his hopes that Americans will collectively pressure Obama to stand up to big oil. Also included a interview with McKibben and Democracy Now.
Climate scientists agree that global carbon dioxide emissions need to be sharply cut. A prominent player in the energy industry predicts they will go in the opposite direction.
The shortfall between what governments say they will do to cut greenhouse gases and what actually needs to be done by 2020 is growing steadily bigger, the UN says.
Most of the many millions of dollars channelled each year to US organisations which deny that climate change is an urgent problem come from sources which cannot be identified.
Maggie Fox, Climate Reality Project, joins Thom Hartmann. Global warming is the greatest threat our planet has ever faced. So what are some concrete steps we can take now to stop runaway climate change before its too late?
The giant corporations powering the fossil fuel industry are warned that they face a damaging backlash if they try to resist the mounting pressures of climate change legislation and high-profile campaigning. The financial and economic muscle of the global fossil fuel industry’s corporate behemoths will not protect them from the costly effects of negative stigmatisation if they ignore climate change pressures, according to a new academic study.
Reporting climate change as a disaster story, or as something intrinsically uncertain, may be less helpful than describing it in terms of the risks it entails, according to a UK study. Doubtful about climate change? Confused by it? Or scared out of your wits? Then perhaps what you’re being told about it is not helping you to get the full story.
A worldwide survey commissioned by the multinational insurance group Swiss Re to assess public attitudes towards risk has shown that climate change is ranked high on the list of people’s concerns. – with 84% of people polled saying they expect more natural disasters in future
The People's World has obtained internal documents produced by the right wing American Legislative Exchange Council outlining a new ALEC plan to kill clean energy programs across the nation. The operation involves the top U.S. energy companies and hundreds of state lawmakers from one end of the country to the other.
The first scientist to warn the US Congress of the threat of climate change retired earlier this year. But that has not stopped him continuing to try to alert the world to the dangers he sees ahead.
Though Australia is considered one of the countries most vulnerable to the vagaries of a changing climate, very few in the Australian corporate sector pay much attention to the issue says a report focusing on business attitudes in the country.
The world’s two greatest emitters of greenhouse gases, China and the US, earn high praise for their efforts to tackle climate change from an Australian report. But it says much more radical global action is urgently needed.
President Obama’s pick to become the nation’s next secretary of energy is drawing criticism for his deep ties to the fossil fuel, fracking and nuclear industries.
It appears that energy and thus climate policy is turning into throwing dung at the wall and seeing what sticks. Big bets are being made on technology to save civilization. Technology certainly has its place but perhaps we need to explore what policies cause us to need this breakneck pace of technical advancement for physical and economic survival.
John Hocevar, director of Greenpeace’s oceans campaign, discusses how climate change threatens the existence of the world’s penguins. One species, the Adelie penguin, is down 90 percent thanks to melting ice decimating the availability of krill, penguins’ main food supply.
In the BBC's three-part series, geologist Dr Iain Stewart takes us on a journey through the history of climate change, the rise of the skeptics, and the future challenges of climate scientists. While this documentary first aired in 2008 it is an excellent primer on the climate change controversy and the importance of moving out of controversy and into action.
With hurricane Sandy as the opening act, President Obama, in his second inaugural speech, has elevated climate change discussion once again. Given the gridlock in Congress, just what can the administration actually accomplish without their participation?