Date: Mon Jan 30 2006 - 08:41:31 EST
This is a story that has more than one dimension: on the one hand, it is a story about the Bush administration threatening government scientists (in this case, a NASA scientist) about talking about global warming. You probably know that the Bush administration denies that global warming is an urgent problem and favors voluntary agreements ("self-regulation") by corporations. It also echoes the "its now or never" claim of President Chavez when Hansen argues that Earth is approaching a "tipping point", i.e. when the quantitative increase in warming results in an "irreverible" qualitative climatic changes for this planet. Is this alarmist? ... is there something missing or assumed in Hansen's claim? ... or are we approaching The End? In solidarity, Jerry ================================================================= Report: Global warming soon irreversible WASHINGTON, Jan. 29 (UPI) -- There is growing concern that global warming, if left unchecked, will reach a point of no return within just decades, The Washington Post reported Sunday. James Hansen, who directs NASA's Goddard Institute of Space Studies, confirmed that 2005 was the warmest year on record, surpassing 1998. Earth's average temperature has risen nearly 1 degree Fahrenheit over the past 30 years, and another increase of about four degrees over the next century would "imply changes that constitute practically a different planet." "It's not something you can adapt to," Hansen told the newspaper. "We can't let it go on another 10 years like this. We've got to do something." There are three specific events scientists fear. They are ongoing widespread coral bleaching that could damage the world's fisheries within three decades; a dramatic sea level rise by the end of the century, and a shutdown of the ocean current that moderates temperatures in northern Europe. The rising sea level would claim the bottom third of Florida, and drive the coast well into New York City as far as Greenwich Village, the report said. Copyright 2006 by United Press International. All Rights Reserved.
This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.5 : Tue Jan 31 2006 - 00:00:02 EST