Climate Change Runs Up Against Green Fatigue
    By Hank Campbell | March 1st 2013 10:05 AM | 66 comments | Print | E-mail | Track Comments
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    Environmental activists make money telling us all how terrible things are; climate scientists appreciate the help promoting their data, we do have a bit of a train wreck coming at us emissions-wise, but climate scientists also know there is a risk of backlash if there are too many hyperbolic claims, and that 'green fatigue' will set in if every change in temperature and every storm is attributed to global warming. That's why even the IPCC, no wallflower when it comes to using media talking points, wishes media would not attribute local weather to climate change.

    And then there is the money aspect to just taking a 'sequester' approach to emissions. While activists seem to believe a sequester approach to taxes and spending - egalitarian, across-the-board cuts without regard to merit - is bad, they have an idealized vision of what it will do in the economy regarding emissions. We should just do it, they insist. When activists said America just 'needs' to get down to early 1990s levels of emissions, they painted a perfect scenario where everyone would somehow be employed in either green energy production or white-collar environmental awareness jobs.  Yet America is back at early 1990s levels of emissions right now - and the economy we have is what that looks like. Stagnant business climate, high chronic unemployment and food stamp recipients are numerous enough to pick a president, but the stock market is up so the government claims that higher stocks and higher taxes will eventually help poor people who bridge a wider chasm from the rich than ever.

    The ironic downside for activists who have gotten the lower emissions they wanted is that in the hierarchy of needs, broad environmental issues are not all that important. When people can't pay the rent or meet lots of other basic necessities, the last thing they want to hear is how they are killing the planet but developing countries like China, India and Mexico are exempt.  And so concern about environmental issues, including climate change, is now at a 20-year low, even in America, despite the full-court press by the media in late 2012 to say that the Sandy storm was caused by climate change. What else happened 20 years ago, the last time people didn't care about the environment? A president got thrown out due to the "It's the economy, stupid" movement. Not having money makes people think about their world, not the world.

    So studies may predict the impact of climate change but people losing their homes are not worried about 50 years from now; the activists who want a full-stop on CO2, more regulations, more penalties, more taxes and then more subsidies for their pet 'green' projects are living in their own fantasy world, where if they mandate and subsidize something like wind power, capitalism will take over and make it viable. The 13th century is not the answer to 21st century energy issues but they are against both fossil fuels and every viable alternative.

    Result: People begin to stop caring.

    Here is the chart from market research group GlobeScan Foundation: 

    * The chart shows average findings across the 12 countries for which tracking data is available since 1992. Polling was conducted by the international research consultancy GlobeScan and its partners in each country. In  Brazil, China, Indonesia, Kenya, Panama, and Turkey , the sample was limited to major urban areas. The margin of error per country ranges from +/- 4.3 to 4.8 percent, 19 times out of 20. ** Question wording and 1992 fieldwork done by The Gallup Institute, Princeton. 

    22,812 citizens were interviewed face-to-face or by telephone between July 3rd, 2012 and September 3rd, 2012 and 6,774 citizens whose tracking data regarding environmental concerns is available since 1992 were used.

    As you see in the chart, it isn't just climate change that is impacted. As the American economy has lurched into becoming European, and the impact has been felt worldwide, concern about water and air pollution, automobile emissions and species extinction have evaporated as well. Concern about the environment, like advocating organic food and toilets that flush less water, has become a pastime for the idle rich - and then those on the left who keep their blinders firmly in place.  Many of the people in the chart have been worried about the environment for a long time, so their concern hasn't gone away entirely. The majority of them are still concerned about clean water. But clean water is not in newspapers every day so for environmentally conscious people to not list 'climate change' as the top worry despite over a decade of media attention is the surest sign of 'green fatigue'.

    Wealthy countries can afford to migrate to green energy but shaky economies cannot so that has to be fixed first. We have cleaner energy solutions that are viable right now, like nuclear power, and that can be a bridge to the future without keeping America a barren economic moonscape. China has entire pollution villages filled with cancer patients, so we don't want a manufacturing free-for-all and therefore we shouldn't be in a race with China to make solar panels or anything else that is worse than the problem it is solving, despite what the Obama administration claims, but there is a moderate stance we can take on 'made in the USA'. Business is not the enemy, it is just the enemy of the current government and they need to soften that stance.

    Greenpeace has their heads firmly in the feel-good fallacy sand too. Spokesman Graham Thompson told Sam Masters at The Independent,  “The public can see that the response of our politicians is completely inadequate to the threat scientists have revealed, and that dissonance is reflected in these polls.”

    In other words, they think the solution is even more government. It isn't just Greenpeace, you could substitute any other anti-food, anti-energy activist group and they all say the same thing.

    Of course. the upside to a bad economy is that people who worry about their finances and less about the environment also start ignoring Greenpeace and Union of Concerned Scientists. Maybe then we can get actual reality-based science policy rather than more calls for top-down social authoritarianism about their politics.


    “The public can see that the response of our politicians is completely inadequate to the threat scientists have revealed, and that dissonance is reflected in these polls.”

    LOL, where do these guys come from?
    Never is a long time.

    "Business is not the enemy, it is just the enemy of the current government and they need to soften that stance."

    I firmly believe there is no contradiction between appreciating the reality and challenges connected to climate change and nurturing thriving businesses strengthening the economy. Contrary, I believe that using businesses and industry as tools in solving our planetary challenges is pivotal. And I do not see why this is not comprehended by people and politicians. Including green movements and conservative industrialists!

    As for screaming 'wolf, wolf' too loud and too many times, that is basic psychology. We know that is not going to work. No wonder people have focus on other worries. ;-)
    Bente Lilja Bye is the author of Lilja - A bouquet of stories about the Earth
    Businesses are not formed for "solving our planetary challenges" unless they are government sponsored rent seekers. That's the realm of religion. The use of such a phrase reeks of Hayek's fatal conceit.

    Businesses work because their goals are limited to areas they can concretely influence with the limited information rational people can possess. Religions, like modern environmentalism, grow because they paint pictures of the unknown, and thrive when the basis is unknowable.

    The modern green movement will soon see a brown backlash and wither since its basis is a falsifiable and falsified unknown, Sooner or later folks wake up and realize that all of the horror stories are just fiction. That's when they dump the whole system down the low-flow toilet. It's the problem of all cults based on predictions. When the deadlines pass without validation events, so do the cults.

    If the greenies want to survive they need to go back to unverifiable catastrophes. Life after death is a good one, but the competition is stiff. Their 2100 deadline was good for a generation or three, but it didn't leave room for future growth in the structure: very selfish on the part of the current leaders, IMHO. Hitler did a better job by fixing 1000 years as his cult's timeframe. As it stands the global warming folks are just going to have to hitch a ride on the next passing comet.

    But they will have to flush two or three times to do so.

    Why you write this based on my comments is a mystery:

    "Businesses are not formed for "solving our planetary challenges".."

    The point is that the business sector can and will see opportunities that lies in a changing environment. There are also sound business ideas to be developed to solve global challenges. To be clear, the business sector alone is of course not responsible or able to solve all problems, but the sector is an underused actor.

    To claim that businesses who engage in planetary challenges are government sponsor rent seekers only demonstrate that you have very little knowledge about business.

    Other than that, I leave the sewerage to you. You seem to be good at it. ;-)
    Bente Lilja Bye is the author of Lilja - A bouquet of stories about the Earth
    It's the problem of all cults based on predictions. When the deadlines pass without validation events, so do the cults.
    Not on this planet they don't. They just change the deadlines.
    So if we can just spread enough lies to get the figure below 50% then climate change will just go away.

    Sorry deniers - the laws of physics don't give a damn HOW ignorant the populace is - they just carry on warming the planet with the kind of inevitable results we are now seeing all over the world.

    It's a good point but the data doesn't show it is black and white. Climate change deniers don't conserve energy any less than believers, they are not out there buying giant SUV - people participating at Burning Man belch more CO2 than most conservatives on a vacation. And the rationalizations climate change advocates use to fly to conferences makes rational people dizzy.

    I'd think it would be worse to do something they know is bad as opposed to doing something they don't think is bad.

    But we have a policy issue that isn't going away and the gridlock on it that we have right now is on the shoulders of people who insisted the science was settled in 2001 - but only because they threw the climate scientists who said it was unsettled off the IPCC. The public does not forget that sort of thing.
    Or we can just look at the data which shows that global temperatures remain flat even as global CO2 levels have steadily increased. There's no denying that the earth warmed from around 1980 to the early 2000s, but there are plenty of indications--noted by reputable scientists--that we may very well be heading for a period of prolonged cooling. Despite all the media hype, there is no scientific consensus (among real scientists) on phenomena that is still under observation.

    I'd also like to support what Hank has already alluded to: The alarmists, and the media who support them, have not helped themselves by making such statements as "Snowfalls are now a thing of the past" ( and "Billions could die from global warming by 2012" ( We need to stop ringing the alarm bell, stop trying to prevent global warming or cooling, and figure out a better way to adapt to such changes.

    Right on!
    The one single thing that gets my goat concerning the sky is falling rhetoric being spewed by the alarmists is that anything that humans do is somehow outside of nature. There are numerous potential benefits for life on this planet by our climate being slightly warmer. The environMENTALists will NEVER even entertain anything but negative outcomes from human behavior.

    The facts are that there are way too many people with narcissistic superiority complexes (also called god complexes) in influential positions that can do a whole lot more damage to human societies than anything that might arise from a few degrees of global warming. (that is IF it should begin warming again)

    The facts are obvious, the climate has always been in continuous flux and the temperatures have often been much warmer than they currently are. You are absolutely correct the temperatures indeed have been stable for the last decade or so, and absolutely NONE of the alarmists' climate models capture this fact. In fact NONE of the current climate models can predict the past fifty years of known climate data when inputing KNOWN INITIAL CONDITIONS into their models.

    We should be putting our resources into adapting to the inevitable changes to our climate, including the inevitable upcoming ice age, whenever it may come to pass. Wasting valuable resources into crippling the worlds economies and wasteful funding of non sustainable (at least economically) idiotic "green" energy projects, which are the real atrocities surrounding the global warming debate. Hear this Chicken Little: The debate is NOT over!

    So much for the practice of science, at least in the modern sense. ;-)

    Gerhard Adam
    You think a "few degrees of warming" is perfectly fine.  You think you're discussing climate and all you can come up with is some simplistic notions of weather behavior?  A few degrees doesn't mean a few extra days at the beach.

    You need to recognize that humans aren't the only species on this planet.  Simplistic notions such as "humans operating outside of nature" are rhetorical devices that are meaningless.  Using such logic then we can rationalize how nuclear weapons are perfectly natural and there isn't any reason to not use them when it suits us.  Similarly, it's perfectly natural to drive species into extinction, after all, it's happened in the past.

    Such talk is simply foolishness, because it presumes that humans ARE in fact outside of nature, because it fails to recognize our own dependence on those same natural processes. 

    Humans do not know best and it's time we got over ourselves and started recognizing that what will destroy our societies is ourselves.  There is no one or nothing else to blame, and it will happen because we think we know better than the "natural systems" that have existed for billions of years and worked just fine without us.

    So, keep whistling past the graveyard ... this time it might even help.
    Mundus vult decipi
    Temperature fluctuations have occurred throughout Earth's history. A few degrees of warming may or may not be a problem, if it occurs. We'll see if and when it happens. But your logic is on no stronger footing. You're simply assuming that human activity causes the Earth to warm and/or cool. There's no quantifiable evidence that supports that, and plenty of contrary evidence that suggests natural cycles drive climate.

    Gerhard Adam
    ...plenty of contrary evidence that suggests natural cycles drive climate.
    Actually that's the goofy part.  What is a "natural cycle"?  It is the result of a cause-effect relationship with some phenomenon.  So while one may argue in the abstract that everything nature does is "natural", it explains nothing.

    Our present atmosphere exists because of early microbial life.  That means that one by one each microbe contributed it's tiny share of atoms/molecules to create the atmosphere we enjoy today.  To claim that humans have no impact is to ignore reality.  Everything begins with a tiny change.  Our mere existence exerts an influence.

    This is precisely why the Earth had ice ages, and went through numerous climate extremes.  Each was the result of some change in the environment [often by existing lifeforms], but it wasn't simply a unidirectional event.  Other effects influenced a rebound in the other direction. 

    I always find it interesting that humans are touted as being the one species that has taken control of their environment, well beyond that of any other organism.  Yet, when faced with the possibility that we may have gone too far, then suddenly humans have little or no influence.
    You're simply assuming that human activity causes the Earth to warm and/or cool.
    This statement simply makes no sense, unless you're willing to qualify it with "at present".  Otherwise you're expecting me to accept the notion that humans are somehow invisible to the environment, which is patently false.
    Mundus vult decipi
    "Natural," as in "naturally occurring"..."Natural" as in the sun, celestial bodies, the oceans, volcanism, climate patterns, etc., etc. But of course we influence the environment.. Land use, pollution, etc. But I don't believe human influence in the form of increased CO2 levels caused a sudden increase in temperatures beginning in the late 80s or early 90s (e.g., the "hockey stick" graph). Humans have influences, yes. Undeniably. Subtle influences. Has the Earth's human activity (at present) caused the planet to heat uncontrollably and will it continue to cause the Earth to heat uncontrollably until it destroys life on the planet? No and no. I don't believe so. It makes for a great Twilight Zone episode, but nothing more.

    Gerhard Adam
    You're not making any sense.  Who said anything about "uncontrollably"?  What makes you believe that the temperature increase is "sudden"?

    If your only point is to consider the most extreme scenarios talked about by unqualified individuals, then your position is irrelevant.  I can't think of anyone except the most extreme laypersons that would ever suggest that climate change threatens all life on the planet.

    Let's be clear.  Whatever "life" risk exists, will impact humans the most, whether it be through species we depend on, or on our lives in general.  The one thing that won't happen, is that life will be destroyed.  Earth will have life long after we've become dust.

    The problem that seems to be overlooked is that individuals seek to focus on the most extreme scenarios, without realizing that even mundane changes can have severe human impacts.  What would happen if the rain patterns [i.e. monsoons in Asia] shifted by a few hundred miles?  What would happen if insect habitats shifted north a few hundred or thousand miles?  What might happen to large fish species if ocean temperatures and currents change?

    I'm not interested in speculative issues like whether New York City will be underwater, or Mad Max kind of scenarios.  There are plenty of real problems that would occur, and even if they don't have a significant impact on the biosphere, even small changes would be devastating to the economies of many nations [including the U.S.].

    This doesn't mean we run out and immediately implement knee-jerk responses, since that isn't likely to help any more than doing nothing.  So, in that respect we certainly need to learn a great deal more to ensure that any course of action has a reasonable change of producing a relevant effect.
    Mundus vult decipi
    Sorry to break it to you but the data says that there has been no measurable global warming for the last 15 years or so. As a scientist I think the concept of calculating a 'global temperature' is bunk anyway, but there it is. So if global warming is not causing your 'climate change' then what is?

    You nailed it , (Environmental activists make money telling us all how terrible things are).

    A "solution to climate change" is seen as a threat by the Environmental activists to their wallets.

    In my opinion

    We need to replace the fossil fuel power plants, the primary source of GHG. Now!

    At a scale required to accomplish this task :

    Ethanol starves people : not a viable option.

    Fracking releases methane : not a viable option.

    Cellulose Bio Fuel Uses Food Land : not a viable option

    Solar uses food land : Not a viable option

    Wind is Intermittent : Not a viable option

    All Human and Agricultural Organic Waste can be converted to hydrogen, through exposure intense radiation!

    The Radioactive Materials exist now, and the Organic waste is renewable daily.

    Ending the practice of dumping sewage into our water sources.

    Air, Water, Food and Energy issues, receive significant positive impacts .

    Reducing illness / health care costs as well !

    Dennis Baker
    Penticton BC V2A1P9
    cell phone 250-462-3796
    Phone / Fax 778-476-2633

    I am a biologist & a doctor.
    I am not a climate denier or a Warmist. Climate has always been dynamic.
    My only gripe about the science of climatology is their picking CO2 as the
    prime mover of climate is at best dubious as CO2 to day is less than 390 parts
    per million and it is essential ingredient for life as we know it for all beings.
    These were the same people that were predicting that Hudson river is going to be permafrost
    in the 1970s.Talk about settled science. I am all for conservation & using our resources
    and leave as little pollution possible for future generation. The CO2 debate at this point
    is a far from settled science. Follow the money to get some answers.

    Gerhard Adam
    Whether or not CO2 is the prime driver, your logic is extremely dubious.

    Whether CO2 is essential for life or not is totally irrelevant.  Bear in mind that it was early life on this planet that created the atmosphere we have today, and given the proper circumstances it could just as readily change it into an atmosphere that doesn't support humans.

    As for AGW being a product of the "same people" that predicted the Hudson river was going to be permafrost ... well, that's just disingenuous.  It's like accusing every biologist of buying into the "selfish gene" dogma or other equally silly ideas.

    I'm sure you wouldn't like to be held to the standard of what you accepted as "settled" in the 1970's.  If so, then biologists would surely be a red-faced lot.  Only now are they beginning to appreciate what many thought was obvious [i.e. the importance of commensal relationships with microbes, etc.].

    While I certainly agree that the science isn't sufficiently settled to warrant political action, let's not pretend as if everyone involved in climatology is a total moron such that only unqualified lay-persons can point out their errors.  If that is to be the standard for assessing scientists, then let's definitely stop with nuclear energy, GMO foods, etc.  Since you can't very well blame a whole class of scientists for being fools, and then expect groups of other scientists to be presumed credible.
    Mundus vult decipi
    I agree with everything you wrote but I had to chuckle at this:
    It's like accusing every biologist of buying into the "selfish gene" dogma or other equally silly ideas.
    Only you could find a way to slam Dawkins in a comment about global warming! :)
    Gerhard Adam
    It wasn't a slam as much as it was bait to see if I would get a nibble.
    Mundus vult decipi
    Nibble on this: Bait and switch is for used car salesmen and politicians. Which one are you? Of course you are baiting.

    Gerhard Adam
    What are you talking about?  Did you even understand the comment? 

    My guess is that you don't even understand what the "bait" was.
    Mundus vult decipi
    All Human and Agricultural Organic Waste can be converted to hydrogen, through exposure intense radiation!
    You could get your hydrogen from seawater, and a lot less handling required than with human waste. Energy usage would leave a return of fresh water. It's not worth it though.

    It takes more energy to manufacture hydrogen than you get usable energy from it. You may argue that you're using "waste energy" in the form of nuclear waste, but the handling requirements are way too strenuous. 

    A much better way - although a horror story in the waiting - would be for everyone to use a chunk of nuclear waste at home, to have a life-long supply of hot water.

    Manufactured Hydrogen: Not a viable option
    that settles it then Billions of people want clean water , but you say its not worth it , so I'll just forget it

    For goodness sake!

    What Francois said was that it's not worth creating water from hydrogen made by irradiating waste. That has nothing whatsoever with whether it's worth providing billions of people with clean water.

    I said creating Hydrogen from waste radioactive materials irradiating Human Organic Waste!

    This would end sewage dumping (including chemical and pharmacological waste) into drinking water!

    Yes burning the Hydrogen at this scale would create a lot of mineral free water, which could have a lot of Industrial uses
    such as leeching, and perhaps replacing Volatile Organic Compounds cleaners.



    When true conservationists finally decide to separate themselves from enviroMENTALISTS then, and only then, will the issues be dealt with rationally and real sound pragmatic solutions for our energy requirements be found.

    Let me explain the difference; Conservationism, rooted in conservative ideals, strives to protect our natural resources, while enviroMENTALISM has its roots firmly seated in liberalism and its resulting irrational motivations are political and mainly interested in exercising power and control over all others.

    Deception, lies, coercion, intimidation, and thuggery are all part of the environMENTALists toolbox, for them the end always justifies the means.

    The fact is that "Green Fatigue" is simply the general populace waking up to this fact.

    Green fatigue is driven by repeated warnings of imminent global catastrophe that has not happened. The fact that the U.S. has decreased emissions through greater use of natural gas (due to fracking), is just a fact, not necessarily the best solution. Like all social initiatives, the AGW "consensus" started as a movement, became a business, and has degenerated into a racket ... and I'm sympathetic to the idea of limiting man's footprint on the planet.

    The society which follows and replaces the United States of America, if it is peaceful and intellectual, will study the green movement as a major cause of the destruction of an advanced society, similar to Nazism, or Communism. It ceased to be a scientific issue and morphed into a struggle for power, based on a big lie. If carbon combustion is bad for mankind, billions must die; there is no technical substitute for energy, and energy supports life. Green energy technologies can not work for bulk supply. No leader will say that. The same power center destroyed the peaceful exploitation of fission energy. Hint: if a nation kills a complex technology for two generations, they no longer possess the skills to restart it. Their professors and experts are dead. Think Aztec agricultural experts, but two zillion times more difficult. History is filled with societies which failed due to vast ignorance being channeled, by demagogues, into hatred of those other types. Once it was witches, today it is coal combustion, or spent fuel.

    When children have no food, perhaps it will stop.

    Gerhard Adam
    Oh jeez ...
    Mundus vult decipi
    Green energy technologies can not work for bulk supply.

    At least the ones your aware of that the Fossil Fuel industry allows you to know about.

    read my previous post

    With a handful of engineering degrees, P.E. licenses, forty years of practice, a score of nukes, two score of fossil fuel power plants of every type, and decades assessing advanced technologies, e.g superconductivity, silicon carbide switching, ultracapacitors, and nanotechnology, I am certain that all green energies can not support bulk supply at a cost which permits our standard of living. They can not survive without massive subsidies, mandated purchases, and enormous costs which must land on Americans. The result is clear. Any activity in which energy is a large cost factor must wither in the US. Has withered.
    My only large uncertainty is what happens to our military position relative to our enemies, as our technical infrastructure rots.

    massive subsidies, mandated purchases, and enormous costs which must land on Americans.

    you describe the fossil fuel industry very well

    Your statement is false. The subsidies to green energies, in recent years, on a unit basis, are an order of magnitude larger than fossil fuel subsidies. People's energy bill is based on unit cost, e.g. per gallon, per kilowatt, thus if green energy grows to a sizable fraction of our energy, we can expect our energy costs to sky rocket. But this will kill our economy, which is my point.
    The green hope is that the unit costs will plummet, over time, due to technical improvements, or effects of mass production. After a half century of engineering, we know this is a false hope. We must face the facts of life. Or die.

    An aside, but our common point. The oil subsidies we pay today, at the pump, are the product of five powerful politicians and Texas oil who met in a D.C. hotel generations ago. Lyndon Johnson, Sam Rayburn, and John Connolly were recognizable names (to old people). The sole reason was to protect an infant US industry, the oil industry. Generations of wealth, made off the backs of working people, stem from this corruption. I do not want it repeated by green crooks.

    Fossil fuel 'subsidies' are almost nonexistent. Anti-energy advocates call a tax credit a subsidy, which spins the issue so that tax you never pay is the same thing as writing out a check using taxpayer money.  So the administration has wasted $72 billion on ill-considered 'alternative' corporate welfare schemes and the rationalization is that some viable energy companies get tax breaks, so it's the same thing. But it isn't the same thing, except to people who are in the anti-business spin movement. If it were, the government would just give out tax credits to wind and solar rather than having to write huge checks.
    You are absolutely correct. People who steal also lie about basic words America's energy policy is wholly controlled by vested interests who buy politicians and drive ideologues. The resultant costs to the public ride above the direct production costs which are inherent in any technology (which was my expertise). For bulk supply, all green energies cost too much due to technical weaknesses. These facts are beyond the authority of politicians. The promise of a bright green tomorrow is a falsehood.

    Our issue is simple: if carbon combustion is bad for mankind, we face a horror far worse than any war we have ever fought. To simply survive, we must sacrifice with exquisite suffering but no certainty of success. We may lose the industrial revolution. Do we have the societal will for this struggle?

    No politician has the integrity to say this.

    Bingo Hank!

    Just follow the money. Its never actually been about "saving the planet" its always been about the money. Money is the most liquid form of power and control. Who was the person set up to gain the most from carbon credits? Yup, you guessed it, Big Al. (I'm not referring to Einstein here)

    "The games afoot", regardless how you slice it , an Industrial revolution is underway!
    The fossil fuel industry is all about the money, as well .

    So the moral of story is Whom Ever Develops a technology that can be shown to be a Best Practice, environmentally!
    Gets to Export Globally. replacing fossil fuels.

    Going back to my original post .......................................

    I wouldn't call it 'green fatigue', rather environmental concerns (beyond affecting one's immediate well-being) are a luxury good, and in hard times people cut back on luxuries more than necessities. That is the paradox of the climate change problem, the only way to address it is sharply declining living standards, while the only way for people to be willing to address it is improving living standards.

    the only " sharply declining living standards ", is that of the executives of the fossil fuel industry!

    You're welcome to stop buying their products, and the products made with their products, and see if your standard of living declines sharply. If most of us were willing to do that, the problem would be solved already.

    While climate deniers are being dishonest about the science, most climate change advocates are being similarly dishonest about the costs off addressing the issue.

    your being dishonest , its the fossil fuel powered electrical generating facilities that ( got to go ).

    other products , are other issues

    First of all, I think though economic times are often a catalyst for change. For example, if I just got my hours cut and Gas is 3.70 a gallon, I'm going to start thinking that maybe a hybrid car isn't such a bad option. It doesn't mean I'm going to go out and buy one that day, but it's a starting point.
    My only takeaway from your article is "this guy thinks people don't care about the environment". This flat out isn't true. More and more people in America are driving hybrids or CNG vehicles. Even if you think global warming is a total myth made up by the liberal media, from a business perspective it makes sense to transition to sources of energy we can produce here in America. You don't have to be wearing tie-dye and listening to The Grateful Dead to realize that having an addiction to foreign oil isn't in the country's best interest. I like a lot of writers on this website, but most of what I see is "look why they're wrong" without any solutions.

    It's been a while since I did the math, but you have to drive a lot of miles (~300k miles) with very low repair costs to recover the added cost of a hybrid system in gas savings, you're far better buying a low cost high mpg car, if you're really trying to save money. It's far easier to recover the hybrid cost on a low mpg vehicle like the GM trucks and SUV's that get an extra couple mpg with it (~100k miles).

    Now like I said it was a while ago, so the add on cost is lower, but they've also increased mpg on small gas and diesel cars.
    Better still if you live someplace with decent weather a small motorcycle is a lot more fun, and can match or exceed the mpg of just about anything.
    Never is a long time.
    Your numbers aren't far off MiCro but they do vary from car to car. I did the math for a used 1998 Audi A4 1.8L Turbo at $3500 late last year and to recover the cost of a Prius at the MSRP I'd need to drive it about 300K miles before it was cheaper than the Audi assuming gas at $5/gallon. So you're in the right ballpark afaik. The Audi get about 28mpg. All this assumes you can drive a Prius 300K before having to replace something expensive like the batteries. Unless you don't already own a car and hate the idea of recycling someone's old one, hybrids just don't make any economic sense.

    without any solutions????? read my post

    The greenies are today's socialists and that is why Bama pushes it. He forgets or doesn't care that our military will never run on green goop. He sees the Dakotas with huge oil resources. He forgets off shore oil in huge numbers via Ca., Fla., NJ, the Carolinas. He hates nuclear. But we have the tech now to do it safely. We have more natural gas than any other nation. We have energy right here which would last 3 hundred years. And these lefty socialists blab about climate, global warming and other nonsense which will not hurt the globe or the USA till Jesus c omes. It is sickening along with and the PC baloney that the Mussolini on the Potomac blabs in his eternal campaigning instead of governing. Enough. Sign the Keystone bill. Drill in Anwar. Use our own energy and stop the Chinese, Russians, Koreans and Iranians plus in our own area, stop Brazil from using our, our , our resources while seniors freeze in the winter and gas pump prices near $4.50 a gal. Just inane for the USA. Enough

    Gerhard Adam
    So you're one of those people that thinks modern civilization started with the Obama administration, so that everything that's even been done wrong is his fault.

    Pretty myopic.
    It is sickening along with and the PC baloney that the Mussolini on the Potomac blabs in his eternal campaigning instead of governing. Enough.
    Agreed, enough.  Your ignorance is showing.
    Mundus vult decipi
    So you think destroying the planet will bring jesus back.............

    There was a leaked IPCC document recently that indicates the alarmism is overhyped, even among the climatologists. First, they are starting to admit that the sun has a much larger effect on the climate than they previously thought (duh!). In particular, CERN laboratory in Switzerland had conducted a cloud chamber study that empirically proved the link between cosmic rays (and hence sunspots) and cloud formation. This has been known theoretically for many decades, but amazingly was not included in climate models. The lower estimate is that sunspots alone represent 1/4 to 1/2 of the warming effect seen since the 1970's (a local temperature minima).

    The other major admission is that the computer models' prediction from 1990 to 2010 consistently overpredicted the temperature rise, so much that the actual temperatures in most years was below what the models said was possible (they give a range from minimum to maximum, but the actuals were below minimum). The actual rate of temperature rise was only about 1/4th the predicted rate. The only "proof" that CO2 causes global warming is from the computer models, there is NO empirical evidence of it. The gross overpredictions mean that the models are invalid and CO2 does NOT have nearly the effect we were once told. 25% of temperature rise rate x 75% (the lower bound of solar activity, being very generous) = 19%. When over 80% of the cause of something is no longer the cause, you know there is a fundamental problem with understanding. Due to the saturation effect and the narrow absorption band of CO2 compared to H2O, in the end, CO2 will become what many have asserted all along, that it is a minor greenhouse gas whose effects are far less than natural variability and therefore pointless to try to control.

    The models are known to be inadequate on solar activity, water vapor (95% of greenhouse gas effect is from water vapor, which varies widely from time to time and place to place) and cloud formation. These inadequacies are material. One cannot believe anything the computer models predict, and therefore, the green policy agenda is based wholly on a flawed assumption.

    Nailed it!
    The problem is that the alarmists have taken the AGW leap of faith and as a result believe in global warming. As such they treat the subject in the exact same way as a religion. You will never convince them otherwise, no matter how rational your arguments are they simply refuse to listen to logic and reason.

    Until someone can separate the normal temperature fluctuations from the components of human contributions and thus quantify the correlation there can be no scientific causation attributable to human activity. To see the fallacy of the AGW argument one should look up Pascal's Wager in order to see a perfect example of their argumentative philosophical fallacy. Simply replace "God" with "global warming" and things become obvious.

    pseudo intellectualism
    the contamination of air, water and food is proven harmful and deadly to humans.

    yet you advocate further contamination of air is GREAT.

    That's it, your the Esso "Tiger in the Tank "

    There it is! The one consistent identifying trait among liberals is that they will always accuse their opponents of the very things that they are most guilty of themselves.

    "Pseudo intellectualism" is precisely the aspect that most AGW alarmists are indeed most guilty of.

    I do not "advocate further contamination of air," I just don't see a life critical compound such as C02 as a "contaminant."

    We could also save a lot of lives if we were to ban water, just think of the lives that could be saved from the prevention of drownings every year. By the way water has much, much more, by several magnitudes, influence in the thermal qualities of our atmosphere. I guess we should also consider this insidious compound a "contaminant" as well.

    False accusations are also a consistent identifying liberal trait, I am in no way associated with any company let alone an oil company like ESSO or their "Tiger in the Tank."

    well then if CO2 is not a contaminant then Oxygen is

    You are quite incorrect. "Contamination" is not the same as "harmful levels". Without your so-called contamination of the air by CO2, you would not exist. CO2 in any practical air concentration is not harmful to humans.

    If you believe CO2 is in fact a contaminate and should be stopped, then by all means remove yourself as a pollution source.

    You just nailed it "harmful levels", The consensus is the levels are Harmful.
    No removal here, I'll continue to go after the Fossil Fuel Powered electrical generation facilities, they seem to produce more CO2 than I do.

    John Hasenkam
    The risks are hyped which isn't surprising because scientists tend to score highly on neuroticism. Democrats tend to be more neurotic than Republicans. So when scientists proclaim doom the Democrats embrace, when scientists proclaim "nothing to see here" Republicans tend to embrace. When either side demands scientific certainty, whatever that entails, they are dreaming. Scientific certainty is what you get in the lab, not the open world.
    At the bottom of all this is a simple question: Can we keep indefinitely releasing GHGs into the environment and expect that this will have no consequences for the ecology? If history is any guide to the consequences of human behavior then our propensity to keep doing something until something bad happens is history repeating itself. For myself it is obvious that at some point we will have to control our GHG emissions in particular and pollution in general. The problem is not if but when and how we decide to do that. We already have multiple examples of pollution that was once accepted as safe and we now know that wasn't true. 

    For a long time economists perceived environmental consequences as an externality, a way of saying "nothing to value here". The biomedical literature is replete with studies showing how various elements we have introduced into the ecosphere has created problems for ourselves and other creatures. Coal fired power stations are or were a leading source of mercury emissions and environmental mercury levels have been rising for decades. It is very difficult if not impossible to accurately quantify the risks of this one example of pollution but in spite of that lack of scientific certainty we recognise the risk and have acted to reduce it with scrubbers. It took decades of increasing mercury accumulation for us to act. We are now in the ridiculous state where we are advised to eat fish but not too much because of mercury and other pollutants. In Australia we have great big globs of coal. Due to massive rains this summer some of the open cut mines are completely flooded and that has created an environmental problems because that water is so polluted it should not be drained off into rivers etc. 

    The problem is that some demand a complete revolution in our economic and industrial behaviors. That's silly, it isn't going to happen and if it did will do more harm than good. It is just as silly to proclaim "nothing to see here". Modern cultures are slowly transitioning towards a stance where we are increasingly aware we must stop shitting in our own nest. We now recognise the folly of the attitude "she'll be right mate, don't worry about it." We must worry about it because history shows that all too often we don't worry when we should have been afraid. Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. That something is not scientifically certain does not mean it is not going to happen. 

    In the very least we must keep exploring ways to minimise our GHG release. We cannot continue as we have in the past, all too often civilisations have collapsed because of a refusal to recognise that the world  is changing so we must change. We don't have to turn the world upside down but we must start evolving our industrial and energy processes towards modes that minimise our propensity for shitting in our own nest. That is not a choice that is an imperative. 

    But hey, in relation to GHGs I think the problem is tractable. Some want the focus to be entirely about reducing GHGs at the point of emission but there is the possibility of creating carbon sinks. I think the future is in geo-engineering but I don't want that to become an excuse for us to maintain existing energy technologies and forget about less GHG intensive technologies. I don't want the world turned into a friggin' car park. 
     He hates nuclear.
    Sure, that's why he approved the building of more plants, first time in decades that has happened in the USA. 

    As I have said before, those modular reactors are not viable. He hates nuclear because he put two anti-nuclear zealots in charge of the NRC and has our incredibly expensive national labs and all of their nuclear expertise doing simulations about pollution. 

    The two installations in GA and SC are real, however.  He is likely to approve Keystone XL too. That doesn't mean he doesn't the energy sector.
    ways to minimise our GHG release

    read my post

    The public is easily duped. Too often you now see labels on the shop-shelves of "green" or "eco-friendly", only to find that there's hardly any of that in the actual product. I believe the only reason I am seeing so many branded like this, is because it sells. Even manufacturers have learnt to milk from the public's ignorance about the environment.
    It may be unjust to the companies who really try to be environmentally friendly, but I look at every product like that with great suspicion now.

    The public ( and You ) is easily duped

    combine these two truths and you get SLAVERY in USA

    CIA Torture Jet crashed with 4 Tons of COCAINE

    Stumbled upon your website and wondered whether it was science based or not. This is the article that convinced me you are an anti-science political hack. Thanks but no thanks.

    Instead of doing what a scientist would do, and analyzing the data about CO2 or other greenhouse gas data in an attempt to reach a truth about climate change, we find you analyzing climate-change-popularity data, and dismissing the science of climate change because it isn't popular enough with non-scientists like you.

    Pathetic, yes?

    I think you make a mistake that is far too common on the activist fringe - you adapt an immediate 'you are with us or against us' mentality that would make even George W. Bush think you are too black and white in your thinking.  You don't know anything about science, me or this site, so your kneejerk attempts at insult should stay at Mother Jones or Grist or whatever site only discusses issues that agree with your politics.  In the real world, policy is impacted by the actions of people so climate fatigue is a concern. As you have shown with your behavior, even people who claim they accept the science of climate change can be damaging to the credibility of the science by their behavior. 
    Please reconsider Jeff. You may have got a wrong "first impression" If this article somehow rattled your cage, look further. I have seen many high-quality science contributions here.
    We are not all able to contribute to research, but we can still discuss and keep the topic alive. One day when we all agree, on that day we can lay the topic to rest.

    You don't need to be a scientist to understand that excessive CO2 emissions are detrimental prior to reaching a point where humans can not breath.
    So dummy the moot argument about climate change ( true or false)!
    Lets just replace fossil fuel powered electrical generation , and move on to other issues.