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Earth Science

IEA Warns of Irreversible Climate Change In 5 Years 1105

Posted by samzenpus
from the it's-getting-hot-in-here dept.
iONiUM writes "As a follow up to the previous slashdot story, there has been a new release by the International Energy Agency indicating that within 5 years we will have irreversible climate change. According to the IEA, 'There are few signs that the urgently needed change in direction in global energy trends is under way. Although the recovery in the world economy since 2009 has been uneven, and future economic prospects remain uncertain, global primary energy demand rebounded by a remarkable 5% in 2010, pushing CO2 emissions to a new high. Subsidies that encourage wasteful consumption of fossil fuels jumped to over $400bn (£250.7bn).'"
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IEA Warns of Irreversible Climate Change In 5 Years

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  • Re:So (Score:5, Insightful)

    by KiloByte (825081) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @01:43AM (#38009026)

    Actually, a carbon tax might work, if it applies to imported goods as well. Of course, China would scream bloody murder.

  • old news (Score:5, Insightful)

    by sanzibar (2043920) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @01:45AM (#38009036)
    we are past the point of the last Irreversible claim... and the one before that... and the one before that...
  • Re:So (Score:4, Insightful)

    by justforgetme (1814588) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @01:49AM (#38009054) Homepage

    Carbon taxes on industry can work, in theory, when the tax amount makes production infeasible, which it never does and when the tax is actually asked for and not bailed away, like it usually is.

  • Re:So (Score:5, Insightful)

    by flaming error (1041742) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @01:59AM (#38009122) Journal

    > none of which would benefit the planet in the long run
    The planet is a big iron ball that doesn't give a damn what we do. The ones who care about epidemics and war are us humans, who are by and large causing the problems ourselves.

    Although this is not politically correct to say, the fewer humans there are the better off the rest of the biosphere will be.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F-QA2rkpBSY [youtube.com]

  • by Phleg (523632) <stephen&touset,org> on Thursday November 10, 2011 @02:03AM (#38009148)

    So what are any Of you going to do about it? Continue to point fingers at China? The third world? Oil companies?

    How about accepting that you can't change others, and instead set examples yourself. I moved into the city, leave my A/C and heat off whenever possible, bicycle for 95% of my trips (including commuting), grow as much of my own food as I can, and buy the rest locally and in-season whenever possible.

    2 years ago, I was doing none of that. Now my personal energy footprint is a fraction of what it had been. Perhaps not as much as is needed, but it's something, and none of it has honestly even been hard.

    So again I ask: what are you going to do about it? What will you or have you changed about your lifestyle to help avert global disaster?

  • by ad454 (325846) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @02:12AM (#38009192)

    Built a cheap portal to an alternative Earth that is 85 million years in the past, in order to colonize it.

    Or wait for the rapture.

    Because the above choices are more realistic than expecting the human race to put short-term greed aside to save the planet.

    Ask a bunch of people if they would be willing to receive a billion dollar now, in exchange to blowing up the Earth 200 years in the future, you would be surprised how many of them would say yes. That is the problem with the human race.

  • by md65536 (670240) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @02:16AM (#38009208)

    It's not "almost all China". That's completely retarded.
    It's not the rate that CO2 output is increasing that is the problem, it's the level of CO2 output. China only recently surpassed US in level.
    Worse than that though, it's not just a yearly output that's the problem, but decades worth of output, because CO2 stays around in the atmosphere for a very long time.

    Check out this chart from a recent slashdot story: http://planet3.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/11/cdiac.gif [planet3.org]
    Compare the area under the graph of the US relative to the area under China.
    It's more appropriate to say "It's almost all US" at this point. China, having produced less CO2 in the past decades but now producing more, has only just started to catch up. It's got a long way to go.

    That said, with the US not slowing down and China racing to catch up, if their rate of production keeps up then things are going to get a lot worse a lot faster. However you spin it, rate of CO2 production by the US is not sustainable, whether they're producing most of the world's CO2, or (worst case) if their dangerously high levels are only a small fraction of it. In the latter case, in the future the US would be making things generally worse, while China might be rapidly endangering the planet, but that hasn't yet happened and it still wouldn't make the problem "almost all China".

  • by symbolset (646467) * on Thursday November 10, 2011 @02:23AM (#38009258) Homepage Journal
    No, it's a dynamic, chaotic system that has been changing since "infall". It hasn't stopped changing ever. It was changing before there was life on the planet and it will be changing after we're gone - until the planet is swallowed by the sun. That's what makes the outcry over "climate change" so ironic.
  • Re:So (Score:5, Insightful)

    by sqrt(2) (786011) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @02:23AM (#38009260) Journal

    Why do people always think that reducing the population requires some sort of genocide? You realize it's also possible to just have a birthrate below replacement level? Soylent Green entirely optional.

    I don't think we're at the carrying capacity of the Earth yet, but I think Homo sapiens are the only species so far that will be capable of artificially surpassing the carrying capacity for a short amount of time which will lead to a period of...genocide, at least in some localized populations who aren't lucky enough to have a strong government with a powerful military. So by not addressing the problem now in a humane way we might end up having exactly what you fear.

  • by ColdWetDog (752185) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @02:42AM (#38009376) Homepage

    Just how stable do you think civilization is today? All we have to do is not expand the economy every quarter and hissyfits crawl out of the TV. It is only going to take modest changes in either arable land, fossil fuel supply or potable water to really kick the major economies into a prolonged tailspin. That increases the probability of widespread military actions, enormous problems with refugees and other unpleasantness.

    Read up on Joseph Tainter's 'Collapse of Complex Civilizations' for an overview of what will likely happen.

    Yes, the planet will survive. In fact, homo stupidicus will likely survive as well. But it isn't going to be pretty.

  • by Arlet (29997) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @02:45AM (#38009394)

    PLANT LIFE ON EARTH DEPENDS ON IT.

    True but irrelevant. It's like saying it's okay to flood cities with water, because fish depend on it.

  • by Shompol (1690084) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @02:52AM (#38009450)
    No, mon ami, it is almost all US [worldmapper.org]. In fact, about 25% of world greenhouse emissions, more than any other nation, even if weighted by economic activity.

    Beware of any statistics presented in English, for the publishers have an obvious incentive to skew the output for political reasons.
  • by mykos (1627575) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @02:59AM (#38009498)
    If we ended the Federal Breeding Subsidy in the U.S., we could reduce our carbon footprint as a species in very short order. Even better: $1k per child tax ($200 federal, $800 state). Would help pay for schools too.
  • Re:So (Score:5, Insightful)

    by sqrt(2) (786011) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @02:59AM (#38009500) Journal

    How about hormonal birth control? Condoms? Education? Empowering women? Whenever someone speaks about dealing with population control out come the sado-masochist fetishists who project their worst fears (or fantasies) on what's actually being said. No one is suggesting any of the things you first mentioned, you don't contribute anything by bringing those things up.

  • by SpaceLifeForm (228190) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @03:04AM (#38009524)
    Spot on.

    One of the main reasons for the global warming denial is that it will be profitable.

    Specifically, shipping over the Arctic. [informaglobalevents.com]

    Of course, the same thinking about profits also leads to the thinking that all of the side-effect damage is "not my problem".

    But, for now, the greed factor wants to encourage global warming, because the less ice over the North Pole area, the better the ships will be able to operate.

  • Let's face it (Score:5, Insightful)

    by SpaghettiPattern (609814) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @03:16AM (#38009582)
    Let's face it, CO2 emissions will drop as soon as we run out of fossil fuel. And not a minute before that. There are no two ways about it. On the whole we are a greedy kind of breed and we will always rationalise reasons for doing the wrong things. So we'd better get used to this.

    Viable alternatives to fossil fuel will emerge as soon economics allow this. Remember when oil prices boomed a couple of years ago? Suddenly all kinds of research boomed as well. But the oil price all of a sudden stabilised to a level we perceive as fine and dandy.

    I don't believe in a well organised conspiracy of oil producing countries as that would require much more intelligence and cooperation than portrayed by any kind of existing governing body. Instead I believe that almost everyone in the energy market is acting in the best possible interest of their limited awareness. Oil prices rise, alternative research boosts, oil prices drop, alternative research slows down, ... Repeat until oil is finished. Expect a fluctuation in oil price in the near years to come.

    I don't see developments going in any other significant direction in the current way the world is governed. And I don't expect world government to change any time soon. Who or what would be powerful, charming and effective enough to change mankind's nature? It would require a disproportional amount of concentrated power to achieve such a thing, which after having saved our civilisation will inevitable start at exploiting it.
  • Re:So (Score:3, Insightful)

    by rtfa-troll (1340807) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @03:26AM (#38009626)

    People are surprisingly not stupid. When third world parents have a) education about birth control options b) access to birth control options and c) social services to guarantee them care in old age without a need to have many children then they tend to reduce their own birth rate to one appropriate for their local environment.

    We need a fundamental change in the way the West gives aid. It should be 100% conditional on setting up good democratic, education, birth control and pension systems.

  • by ShakaUVM (157947) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @03:29AM (#38009642) Homepage Journal

    >>95% of US electric power is generated by BURNING COAL

    Uh, no, Captain Hyperbole. It's consistently between 40%-50%. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electricity_sector_of_the_United_States) NG, which is cleaner than coal, but still not "clean" is about a quarter of production. The mix varies a lot by state - we don't have coal reserves in California, so we generate from NG instead of coal, and are boosting our renewables... though we're paying some of the highest energy rates in the country for the privilege.

    Most of the rest comes from Nuclear and Hydro (our two big green sources of energy), which environmentalists hate for some reason, not really understanding that by blocking/shutting down/destroying nuclear plants and dams, they're just upping our coal and NG production.

    >>And the answer is simple -- do what the French did -- go nuclear

    Yep.

  • Re:So (Score:5, Insightful)

    by _KiTA_ (241027) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @03:51AM (#38009762) Homepage

    Actually, a carbon tax might work, if it applies to imported goods as well. Of course, China would scream bloody murder.

    When has a tax ever done anything? Name one!

    Well, I rather like having public education, public roads, and public defenders, all of which are paid via tax money... Just as a few examples off the top of my head.

  • Re:So (Score:5, Insightful)

    by toriver (11308) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @03:52AM (#38009768)

    No, he is saying that a country with 5% of the world's population is responsible for a disproportionate 25% of emissions, and should try and mend their ways.

  • Re:So (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Megaflux (1803738) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @03:56AM (#38009790)
    Actually if you would put the tax in ratio with the population, the US would scream bloody murder
  • Re:old news (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Luckyo (1726890) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @03:57AM (#38009794)

    There has been credible evidence that "point of no return" comes when oceans are warm enough to start releasing methane stored on the seabed. Then greenhouse effect will start feeding itself and will likely become unstoppable, and we'll simply repeat history with massive warming and sea level rise.

    Reality is though, that we have no reliable information on when this threshold will occur. We do know that oceans are warming up, and it's alarming, so reducing the emissions would absolutely help. But all this crying about DOOMSDAY only pulls the rug from under the people who are actually working on the problem.

  • Re:old news (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Galestar (1473827) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @04:38AM (#38010000)
    I think they are all correct. Saying a trend is irreversible does not mean you are going to see the final effects of the trend immediately. Anyone who says "well the catastrophe hasn't happened yet, therefore they must be wrong" has a serious problem with logic.
  • Re:So (Score:5, Insightful)

    by jibjibjib (889679) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @04:40AM (#38010010) Journal

    I disagree that the carbon tax "bones the economy on a grand scale". I also disagree that we "fucked the future of the country".

    Could you provide any information (e.g studies predicting a significant decrease in GDP, standard of living or any other reasonable measure of progress) to support this claim?

    I agree that the carbon tax in Australia won't make much of a difference. But of course we can look at each individual in the world and say their individual actions won't make much of a difference. It would be unreasonable to use this as a reason to take no action.

  • by hsthompson69 (1674722) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @04:43AM (#38010020)

    So shouldn't we do something to stop the changes we can stop?

    Why? What if human caused changed might end up being very good for us? What if *without* human caused change, we would face doomsday and disaster? You've got all sorts of imaginary risks here that have no basis in any sort of firm rationale.

    The precautionary principle, while instinctually compelling, is dangerous to follow blindly. Everyone assumes that their proposed "precautionary intervention" has no downside risk, but that's simply baseless assumption. By the tenets of the precautionary principle, we could have rationalized never starting any agriculture - the conscious manipulation of our environment, through either farming or animal husbandry, was a new, different, and wholly unprecedented activity. Naysayers back in the hunter-gatherer tribe could have insisted that such intervention into the natural world was going to doom us in 5 years.

    And where would we be now?

  • by Jeremi (14640) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @04:58AM (#38010100) Homepage

    Ask a bunch of people if they would be willing to receive a billion dollar now, in exchange to blowing up the Earth 200 years in the future, you would be surprised how many of them would say yes. That is the problem with the human race.

    If you want a really stark illustration of the problem, ask any parent how many endangered species they would be willing to see go extinct if it would mean sparing the life of just one of their children. (and now multiple that by the number of parents in the world).

  • Re:So (Score:4, Insightful)

    by AC-x (735297) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @05:54AM (#38010368)

    For example, want to reduce CO2 from transport? Well you better man transport unaffordable to the masses. Little changes won't work.

    How about we make a far greener public transport system more affordable and practical?

  • Re:So (Score:5, Insightful)

    by thelamecamel (561865) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @06:05AM (#38010414)

    Without a carbon tax, industry has no incentive to reduce their emissions. With a carbon tax, they have a small financial incentive to do so. Therefore they will pick the lowest hanging fruit to save some money, in the process lowering their emissions. While there is still low-hanging fruit (e.g. now, coming from where there's no incentive not to emit CO2), a carbon tax can reduce a nation's emissions without forcing large changes in how things are done.

    I vaguely remember that a month or two ago, a mine in Queensland (possibly the one owned by the Indian who threatened to pull out of Australia if the carbon tax went through) worked out how to reduce their emissions by 30%.

    The other effect is that the added cost of coal power due to the carbon tax/trading scheme makes gas somewhat more financially viable and renewables significantly more financially viable.

    It's a very neat theory, and it's easy to see how it will affect businesses either gently (with a low price on carbon) or eventually reshape industries (with a high price).

  • Re:So (Score:5, Insightful)

    by TapeCutter (624760) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @06:34AM (#38010506) Journal

    I agree that the carbon tax in Australia won't make much of a difference. But of course we can look at each individual in the world and say their individual actions won't make much of a difference. It would be unreasonable to use this as a reason to take no action.

    I don't know who said it but - It's like seeing a truck coming at you from a distance, do you start calmly taking one step at a time towards the curb, or do you wait until the last minute and then dive into the gutter?

    Personally I'm strongly in favour of this small step despite the fact I'm in the tax bracket that gets zero compensation. In principle I would like to see a situation where the cost of dumping shit on to the commons is greater than the cost of proper disposal.

  • by Warwick Allison (209388) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @07:15AM (#38010666) Homepage

    Your faith in science is excellent. However, you're basically saying it is somehow easier to collect a vastly dispersed gas rather than to stop producing it.

    Climate control engineering is far far beyond human capacity in time to solve this. The things that are well within our power are utility-scale solar thermal power and electric automobiles. These simple, existing technologies are completely sufficient. They just need to be built. To do so will have far less risk and lower cost than fanciful planet-sized umbrellas and other science fiction dreamery.

    More importantly, when someone builds them, you can believe it, unlike when someone tells you they are going to research climate control, "clean coal", or other distractions. Don't believe anything but real action.

    Buy wind power (at a premium) RIGHT NOW. Contact your electricity provider and ensure they too are taking it seriously. You can act now. It's only 20% or so extra in Australia (and expect that gap to close with the Carbon Tax).

    Or do nothing and be a pathetic loser.

  • by Raenex (947668) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @07:24AM (#38010716)

    No, mon ami, it is almost all US. In fact, about 25% of world greenhouse emissions, more than any other nation, even if weighted by economic activity.

    The map you linked to was data from 2002, with some data from 2004. Go ahead, download the linked data and look for yourself.

    In the meantime, China has been growing economically at an incredible clip, and lots of their energy comes from coal. They have surpassed the United States, and with a billion+ people moving from agriculture to Western lifestyle, are going to dwarf whatever the United States does in the future.

    Beware of any statistics presented in English, for the publishers have an obvious incentive to skew the output for political reasons.

    Beware of your own biases. English is the world's de-facto common language between countries. It's not like you're going to get unbiased data from China government newspapers.

  • Re:old news (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Arlet (29997) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @07:41AM (#38010790)

    Imagine you're standing on the beach, and someone's telling you that flood is coming in. You're screaming they are wrong, because the sea has retreated in the last 2 minutes.

    Are we clear now?

    We are clear that you don't understand how to look at the data, yes.

  • Re:So (Score:5, Insightful)

    by PopeRatzo (965947) * on Thursday November 10, 2011 @08:01AM (#38010870) Homepage Journal

    25% is not significant.

    Let me take 25% of your skin, or 25% of your food, or 25% of your family, and then tell me if 25% is "significant".

    And remember, it's only 25% at the moment (if that's really the number). If you take the entire industrial revolution, how much of the carbon output was from the US?

    At 25%, the US is the leader. It's time for the US to lead toward the solution.

  • by GameboyRMH (1153867) <{moc.liamg} {ta} {hmryobemag}> on Thursday November 10, 2011 @09:16AM (#38011342) Journal

    At least the US' emissions are only on a slight increase and are slowing down. China's have almost gone vertical in the last ~7 years 8-(

    On the other hand, consider that the USA is emitting nearly as much as China with less than 1/4 the population 8-(
      WTF guys!? You're doing something seriously wrong over there, especially considering that all the heavily polluting industry has been outsourced and people don't commonly ride 2-stroke bikes in the US.

    Are you putting WW2 fighter engines in your SUVs now or what?

  • Re:So (Score:5, Insightful)

    by tbannist (230135) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @09:33AM (#38011462)

    It's like seeing a truck coming at you from a distance, do you start calmly taking one step at a time towards the curb, or do you wait until the last minute and then dive into the gutter?

    Or do you stand still and do nothing at all and get hit by the truck? Because every motion can be subdivided into smaller motions until each accomplishes virtually nothing. Since none of those actions will individually get you out of the way, why bother taking any of them?

  • Re:So (Score:3, Insightful)

    by fyngyrz (762201) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @10:44AM (#38012150) Homepage Journal

    And that's exactly the problem.

    No, the problem is that in 5 years, the climate will have changed by such a tiny fraction of a degree that, just as in the past ten years, it'll be basically irrelevant to anything and everything. And in 100 years, where enough change might accumulate to make a (very, very slight) difference, people will naturally and inexpensively adjust (move, change crops, rebuild waterfront installations) to whatever comes without really noticing why.

    CO2 absorption is limited; there's a limited amount of IR to absorb, and it's nonlinear, and feedback systems (like evap/precip) will accelerate to compensate, and the climate graphs show that CO2 increases lag warm periods (not lead), so this whole CO2 causing warm periods is a guess without any prior evidence, the models don't actually work globally (though they are abused to "predict" GLOBAL climate change) which should be a HUGE red flag for anyone trying to use them as evidence for anything, etc., etc., etc.

    But hey, you get right on with your "sky is falling" thing, there. Keeps you distracted from things like your liberties and freedoms being taken away, government encouragement and sponsorship of religious delusions, overfishing, strip mining, etc.

  • Re:So (Score:5, Insightful)

    by wisty (1335733) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @11:12AM (#38012450)

    If it "bones the economy on a grand scale", that would be because it's costing so much, greatly reducing carbon emissions, right?

    As for the "we are only 1%" argument, that's kind of BS. We are basically the worst in the world, per capita. We also screwed up global efforts, by dragging our feet on Kyoto (though the US had more of an impact), despite having *very* generous terms.

    For a complete sociopath's point of view, we should do everything we can to get out of having any responsibilities. We are a small fish, and no-one really cares what happens here. But from the same point of view, China should invade us for our coal and ore reserves. I'm rather glad that sort of behaviour is frowned upon.

  • It's the elites (Score:5, Insightful)

    by bzipitidoo (647217) <bzipitidoo@yahoo.com> on Thursday November 10, 2011 @11:16AM (#38012490) Journal

    I fear so too. We have such fools leading our nations and large corporations. Trolls like Rupert Murdoch are deliberately confusing the public, sowing doubts about science itself, not only climate science, and telling outright lie after lie. In 1993, I personally heard a speech from the CEO of Lennox to employees in which he said that 1) he didn't believe in global warming, but 2) if global warming was real, then good, because it would be good for Lennox's business of selling more A/C's! (He also complained that he would have made more money in the stock market than he made having it all tied up in Lennox, implying that the employees didn't work hard enough or something, but for the sake of everyone's jobs, he stayed with the company. What a guy!) They ought to be our best and brightest people. They evidently believe they are, the way they carry on. But they don't seem to understand something basic that separates children from adults, which is that you can't make problems go away by ignoring them. They've done worse. They've actively worked to deny everything, actually spent money that they are so greedy to have, on propaganda dressed up as science. What the hell! We have a huge, huge leadership problem. In Lennox's case, I know that CEO inherited the company. He didn't win his position on any sort of merit at all. He was the son of the previous leader, that's all.

    What a bunch of lying, smug, lazy hedonists. Every generation can use a challenge, to keep life from becoming too easy and boring. We ought to embrace this problem. We could solve it. The US didn't go AWOL for WWII, didn't chicken out and let Japan grab half the Pacific, didn't leave the Brits to the Nazis. We demonstrated to the world that democracy is superior to fascism. Now we call them the Greatest Generation. If Rupert Murdoch had been a media mogul then, I can imagine he'd have spewed ridiculous pro-Nazi propaganda, maybe suggest that the US ought to cut a deal to sell Hawaii to Japan in exchange for peace. Solving global warming doesn't require the sacrifice that war did. Yet, we're running away from it. We don't deserve to stay #1 with that attitude. Our parents would be ashamed. All the work and sacrifice they did so we'd have a better life, and this is how we repay that.

    So, we won't do enough to address this problem, not until it's far too late. Greenland will melt, and maybe western Antarctica will too, most of Florida and Bangladesh will drown, and the Netherlands may find it impossible to raise the dikes high enough. Then we'll engage in recriminations as we fight over higher ground and food. There will be war, maybe even WWIII and use of nuclear weapons. There will be wailing and gnashing of teeth.

  • Re:So (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 10, 2011 @11:37AM (#38012778)

    Two points:

    1) Yes temperatures varied much more in the past but I fail to see the importance of that. What I care about is whether a) there is a current temperature rise caused by man, b) whether this is a bad thing and c) whether we can do anything about it. The fact that there were other greater changes in the past may mean that a) and c) are false but certainly don't preclude them.

    2) While I agree 'irreversible' is probably not the right word, the timescales involved make the point a bit moot; to give an example the last glacial period lasted 100,000 years. Now if I told you that man's effect on the climate wasn't in fact irreversible but would, in fact, right itself in 100,000 years I don't think you'd take much comfort from that.

  • Re:So (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Quiet_Desperation (858215) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @11:44AM (#38012858)

    So are we drawing a line between economy vs. climate now?

    Now?!

  • Re:So (Score:4, Insightful)

    by canadian_right (410687) <alexander.russell@telus.net> on Thursday November 10, 2011 @12:48PM (#38013606) Homepage

    The climate has been warmer in the past, but humans and the civilization we have built like the climate we have NOW, not a million years ago. Being natural doesn't make something good for you. Rattle Snake poison is perfectly natural, but I don't want any.

    A much warmer world is going to be very difficult for the great mass of humanity that is poor. The average slashdotter will barely notice the higher food costs, the higher taxes to build dikes, or help relocate people from flooded areas. But, because this warming is caused by us, we have the power to reverse it if we choose. The cost of reversing this is much less than say the war in Iraq, and would do much more good.

    Creating whole new industries for new "green" power should help the economy, not harm it.

  • Re:So (Score:4, Insightful)

    by ahodgson (74077) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @01:12PM (#38013864)

    It also hasn't done anything to slow carbon emissions. Which makes it useless.

  • Re:So (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 10, 2011 @02:27PM (#38014620)

    I disagree that the carbon tax "bones the economy on a grand scale". I also disagree that we "fucked the future of the country".

    Could you provide any information (e.g studies predicting a significant decrease in GDP, standard of living or any other reasonable measure of progress) to support this claim?

    Don't you know how the Global Warming debate works? If you're on the "Global Warming will destroy the environment" side, then no matter how much evidence you present to support your claims, you're just an alarmist. But if you're on the "Reducing emissions will destroy the economy" side, then no evidence is required whatsoever, and you're allowed to call your opponents "alarmists".

  • Re:So (Score:5, Insightful)

    by im_thatoneguy (819432) on Thursday November 10, 2011 @02:47PM (#38014840)

    So what you're saying is that if a glacier moved through Manhattan it wouldn't be a problem. I mean hell, there used to be glaciers in Manhattan all the time, why the big fuss *now*?

    The reason your argument is 'fucking stupid' and not just 'stupid' is the same reason that having a volcano erupt under you is quite different in every single way from a volcano having erupted where you're standing 100k years ago.

    I mean shit son, not that long ago Japan was entirely under water, who gives a shit about a little wave?

    I would like to see that argument in a court of law. "Your honor, members of the jury, I don't see what the fuss is all about. Yes a bulldozer drove through Xenobyte's home but only 10 years ago that was an empty lot! That lot has seen far greater changes in the last 100 years than last Tuesday. So who's to say that humans are responsible for driving that bulldozer through his living room? Why, 1,000 years ago huge glaciers would have driven through his living room."

If a subordinate asks you a pertinent question, look at him as if he had lost his senses. When he looks down, paraphrase the question back at him.

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