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Sunday, December 13, 2015

The Paris Agreement has been adopted by COP21

Sou | 10:16 AM Go to the first of 54 comments. Add a comment
It's agreed. On Saturday 12 December at 7:31 pm (Paris time), 195 nations adopted a new, universal Paris agreement. A momentous step signalling a commitment to end the use of fossil fuels.








54 comments:

  1. Brilliant.

    Even if the goal is very very very optimistic, the ground rules have been changed and there's no going back.

    As far as I saw none of the usual old non sequiturs, evasions, red herrings and time-wasting straw man arguments so loved by the denialists were given any weight at all. I'm not sure if they were even raised.

    Now it's time to concentrate on implementation and dealing with the likes of the Republicans and their counterparts in other countries eager to sink this agreement at the first opportunity. It would be a wonderful bonus if the media will eventually relegate climate pseudoskeptics to the fringes along with creationists, anti-vaxxers, homeopaths and 9/11 conspiracy theorists.

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  2. I'm surprised and pleased that the outcome of Paris was as good as it materialised. I was fearing that it would be coöpted by the usual suspects and diluted to uselessness by the end of the negotiations, but the result this weekend is sufficient to keep hope that perhaps we can do sufficient to prevent the worst of it.

    It certainly has me revising my plans. I'd expected a desultory commitment to 2 °C, and in that case I was prepared to basically disconnect from my involvement in the blogosphere and focus mostly on local resilience preparation. It seems though that the message has finally started to filter through - and the Climate Council certainly seems to think that the online community has made a difference:

    http://www.climatecouncil.org.au/whats-happening-in-paris

    Now is the time to start really lifting up the rocks and revealing the lurking recalcitrant trolls of denialism and vested interest that would have their own material and ideological comforts placed before the security of the rest of the world, and before the future of the world.

    So... once more unto the breach my friends!

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    1. Thanks for taking the time to track down the problem, Sou. Here's an attempt with OpenID...

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  3. The best thing about this agreement will be watching denier's heads explode over the next couple of weeks.

    Should be a lot of fun.

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    1. I am looking forward to that.

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    2. From what I've seen so far it's just business as usual for the denialati. Some mutterings along the lines of "money", "wealth redistribution", "it won't happen", "countries will pull out", "money", "wealth redistribution", "what about the poor", "the poor will grab our money" - then it's back to their usual mantra that "climate science is a hoax".

      I think it's mostly utter nutters, with the previously semi-sane now turned into utter nutters. (Eg Judith Curry thinks that the 97% is wrong and that global warming is "natural". She's turned out to be as nutty as a fruitcake.)

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    3. The next big hurdle is the US elections. Its possible the Republicans will try and make it be all about Islam. How many more Paris/San Bernardino incidents would it take to enable a total fruitcake to get elected?

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    4. The exploding heads won't really set in until they see their entire agenda being comprehensively ignored when it comes to actual policy implementation. That hasn't happened yet. I want it to happen.

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    5. Re US elections: it has occurred to me that Trump may yet end up being the world's best friend, simply because he has the potential to destroy the power of the Republicans by fragmenting their voting base.

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    6. I don't know about that. On several general public sites I frequent (e.g. slate.com), I have noted a huge uptick in denier activity. Slate in particular is running scores-to-hundreds of lines of denier material, mostly cut and paste, to each line of more rational material. Be it astroturfers or committed amateurs, the output is amazing and amounts to a pretty good DOS attack. I expect we'll see this spread.

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    7. "that" = heads exploding.

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    8. "Slate in particular is running scores-to-hundreds of lines of denier material, mostly cut and paste"

      Yeah, there was a Dyson Freeman cut & paste job on the Guardian website. I have no idea what it was meant to signify.

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    9. @ jgnfld: I'd often thought of the flooding of comment boards with repetitive, idiotic and often abusive posts as a tactic to drown out sensible discussion, as well as to provide some self-reassurance for the denialists. That DOS analogy is excellent, and one I hadn't heard before.

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    10. "On several general public sites I frequent (e.g. slate.com)"

      The biggest abuser on slate (and livescience) is an American named Rick Cina (goes by rcina on slate) who posts thousands of cherry picked lines from scientific papers in a gish gallop that would make Duane Gish proud.

      As far as I can tell, he's not an astroturfer but a very committed amateur. He's been praised by Anthony and Jo Nova before, but nothing really beyond that.

      What I did find interesting about him, is that he practices a form of evangelical protestant christianity which is known for its climate change denial. He also claims he's a registered democrat, but you look at the last presidential election stats for his region and it was a landslide for Romney.

      I do find it suspicious that he goes to great lengths to distance himself from the usual suspects, here's an example of his tactics.

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    11. At the moment I'm more concerned that the Queensland Labor Party seems to be signing up for climate science denial. Annastacia Palaszczuk was reported yesterday as saying the Queensland "will always be reliant on coal", which is clearly insane if you actually listen to the scientists. She also want to be able to classify gas as "renewable", so doesn't even understand the concept of renewable energy.

      http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-12-13/firm-focus-on-renewables-palaszczuk-says/7024762?section=qld

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    12. From AP

      Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky said Obama is "making promises he can't keep" and should remember that the agreement "is subject to being shredded in 13 months." McConnell noted that the presidential election is next year and the agreement could be reversed if the GOP wins the White House.

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    13. Tried to post here earlier on my phone, but of course, Google declined to hook up to Wordpress. It's getting beyond frustrating, when you spend 15 mins composing a post, only to not be able to post it. WTF. I do web sites for a living, and if my stuff did that, I'd be embarrassed beyond belief. However...

      Slate/Bad Astronomy. Hmph. I was a regular contributor there for years, but then the climate change denialati took the place over, and I gave up about a year ago. On Discover, Phil used to at least make the occasional appearance in the comments. But on Slate, he doesn't seem to give a FF and the lunatics have taken over the asylum. Lots of sockpuppets on there, and yeah, there's only so many 'rcina' copy-pastas you can read before you just give up. It's an unmoderated mess.

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    14. Sorry metzomagic. Are you able to comment signing off using Name/URL instead of wordpress? It seems to be only the Wordpress sign-off that's still causing problems.

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    15. I've just sent another couple of complaints/queries to Google about this.

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    16. Metzomagic, as a follow up, I've been told that the problem probably lies with WordPress. I've written an article with two workarounds. Let me know if that works for you.

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    17. Thanks for taking the time to track down the problem, Sou. Here's an attempt with OpenID... well, aside from the fact that I replied to the wrong comment above, it does appear to work ;-)

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    18. Thanks for the feedback, mm.

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    19. Metzo, I shot Phil an email probably a year ago urging him to shut down the unmoderated comments section since it was being used as sort of a denier go to clearinghouse. He responded and said he would bring it up with his editor, so I don't really think it's his choice unfortunately.

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  4. I'd hoped for more. Yet it does seem to be all-that-is-possible, given the opposition to the global program by Republicans in the US.
    The 'possible' is reduced to what doesn't need their ratification.

    In this 'unavoidable' version, what we see as lost reasonableness and fairness, will at least be to the deniers: lost opposing arguments.

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  5. Check out Roy Spencer's response over at Climate Crock.
    The guy's not just a bad scientist he's an awful human being.

    http://climatecrocks.com/2015/12/13/and-now-the-view-from-denier-ville/#respond

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    1. Well, that's one head exploded, for sure. Deniers are such charming people...

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    2. "[I] do hereby proclaim the three-day period from Friday, April 22, 2011, to Sunday, April 24, 2011, as Days of Prayer for Rain in the State of Texas. I urge Texans of all faiths and traditions to offer prayers on that day for the healing of our land, the rebuilding of our communities and the restoration of our normal way of life."

      "Texans have been strengthened, assured and lifted up through prayer; it seems right and fitting that the people of Texas should join together in prayer to humbly seek an end to this devastating drought and these dangerous wildfires."

      --Gov. Perry, (R) TX

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    3. I've never quite understood why people who think the world is being run by an all-powerful, all-knowing and completely benevolent deity would feel he was so incompetent that he needed them to tell him how to run the weather. Surely this is verging on heresy.

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    4. True. But my main point was to point out the rather vast irony of Spencer--as cited by the OP--making fun of others praying to their gods (he gets American aboriginal beliefs pretty wrong as well, but that's to be expected given his extreme arrogance in even taking this approach) while holding Cornwall Alliance and other fundie Xtian beliefs himself.

      The mind boggles if not explodes.

      As for your point, Jim Morrison said it best in The Soft Parade:

      When I was back there in seminary school
      There was a person there
      Who put forth the proposition
      That you can petition the Lord with prayer
      Petition the lord with prayer
      Petition the lord with prayer
      You cannot petition the lord with prayer!

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    5. https://youtu.be/jHsbwY4EPyA?t=13

      Perhaps he is punishing them for not groveling enough.

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  6. And the there's this today from Clueless etc

    Climate change in the 21st century will be on the low end of the IPCC projections, and that we will not see anything close to 4C warming (unless natural variability somehow conspires to produce substantial warming).

    She who cannot be embarrassed

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    1. PG, she's beyond denial, don't you think? Judith shows that she doesn't have a clue about what gets done in climate research. In that same article she wrote: "it will hopefully become ‘easier’ for scientists to obtain funding to research natural climate variability and challenge the IPCC’s consensus".

      Do you think she's bothered to read a climate research journal ever in her denialist life? Like BAMS, Journal of Climate, Climate Dynamics, International Journal of Climatology, etc etc

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    2. Mindless reactionary tribalism nourishes her stupidity and her many supporters save her from having to deal with herself.

      She has eschewed physics in favour of becoming Anthony Watts and she has no problem with that. All problems belong to Georgia Tech and to its vast discredit it seems happy to accept them

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    3. If she has been foolish enough to take fossil fuel industry money then she has no place left to go.

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    4. Millicent, there's nothing to suggest that, is there?

      I see her as someone the US disinformation machine uses almost free of charge (expenses only, and maybe sitting fees and the occasional speakers fee - not worth sacrificing one's self-respect for). I figure her motivation isn't money, it's fame from wherever she can get it. She's no longer fussy. I figure what drives her backward and downward is nothing more than adoration from climate conspiracy clowns, hobnobbing with the power-brokers (or wannabe power brokers) in right wing politics, and getting tabloid sensationalists to quote her nonsense. (She might also be so far gone that she hopes that one day one of her grad students will discover that an ice age cometh or something, and that she can add her name to their paper.)

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    5. "Millicent, there's nothing to suggest that, is there?"

      I have no evidence at all one way or the other. Hence the "if" at the start of the line.

      Talking in generalities with no person in particular in mind, I find it fascinating that not one denier has broken ranks and come clean. It seems to me that deniers taking the money must be signing draconian NDAs. That probably stems from the link to the tobacco industry. That industry was hurt to the sum of billions of dollars by whistle blowers way back. But they seem to have fixed that problem, so I expect their lawyers spent a fortune developing NDAs that are bulletproof.

      For anyone interested in the background, I'd recommend a very good film "The Insider" which is a dramatised account. The film uses people's real names so it must have taken care to be accurate.

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    6. I'm with Sou on this one. I get the impression that Aunt Judy is not really up to the physics for climate - can't blame her, radiative transfer equations are beyond most people's ken. Come to think of it, she's pretty feeble on statistics and computer-based stuff into the bargain.

      She'd rather tell people that you don't need to understand the physics, just go by gut feel. She seems not to get it that most of us who can't (or won't) do the physics for themselves are perfectly willing to go with the outcomes of other people's work. I very much doubt she'd go for the fossil industry money. That would be a kind of acknowledgement that she's being dishonest.

      She is fooling herself however and glad to do it because it gets her a whole lot of attention and faux authority (witness to congress no less!) she couldn't possibly muster if she was just a wannabe or also-ran in the physics and related climatology fields.

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    7. I don't think that's how the denier industry works. As I understand it, there are the organisations with paid staff, who filter funds through various channels to anonymise the donors (eg Donor's Trust). But the hoi polloi don't get any money out of it, or nothing more than peanuts. Why spend money where there are plenty of fools who'll do your bidding for free?

      Jo Nova and her Rocket Scientist from Luna Park make enough to live on from begging for denier handouts. Anthony Watts scrapes together a bit the same way. And those people supplements it with minor scams like failed secret open societies, and endless but undelivered promises of mysterious Force X's and Notches. (Most denier scientists live off the taxpayer - the ones who work at universities like John Christy, Roy Spencer and Judith Curry.)

      Even the denier lobby groups have to scrimp these days. A lot of companies that used to donate have deserted them and no self-respecting newspaper will publish their tripe - well, not as often.

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    8. Crossed comments - I was replying to Millicent's comment. Agree with Adelady about Judith. (Judith thinks she can pretend cleverness and insight by making sure her fan base is even more deficient in both than she is.)

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    9. "As I understand it, there are the organisations with paid staff, who filter funds through various channels to anonymise the donors (eg Donor's Trust)."

      I think that's just another part of it. But I'd bet that if you want their money, you sign an NDA before you can get anything from them. I think that, as a consequence of the tobacco industry experience, any number of layers have been put in place to protect the pollutocrats and their empires.

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    10. Sou...just asking...Does she get quality grad students any more? Not publishing nor getting grants would seem to be a damper for getting them.

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    11. "Most denier scientists live off the taxpayer"

      Even denier royalty who are well funded by the fossil fuel industry will maintain their academic links for the credibility it gives them. They tend to emphasize those and forget their front group positions when presenting their academic credentials.

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    12. "NDAs that are bulletproof" do not exist. An NDA is just a promise. Academics are really, really bad at keeping promises that restrict their speech.

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    13. ""NDAs that are bulletproof" do not exist."

      Maybe "NDAs that are bulletproof" don't get talked about. Certainly, nobody is talking at the moment. And that is odd, given that denier talking point after talking point has gone tumbling down in ruin.

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    14. We know quite well that the think tanks are paid by big fossil and rich libertarians. They occasionally slip up and mention as much, and early on they weren't even hiding the fact.

      That none of the bit players has "defected" sounds to me like rather good evidence that they actually aren't paid off to any substantial extent.

      Otherwise you are stuck believing in a huge conspiracy of hundreds if not thousands of people with no evidence to back up the conspiracy theory. When pushed you fall back on claiming that some talisman by the name "NDA" is preventing people from speaking out. It quickly starts to sound nutty.

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    15. "a huge conspiracy of hundreds if not thousands of people"

      Hundreds if not thousands of people who are wrong, are consistently being shown to be wrong, and not one of them is standing up and saying, "oh I was wrong"?

      Then there really is no non-nutty explanation of what is happening here.

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    16. Thousands of people who are wrong, shown wrong, and consistently continue to believe -- that's a day that ends in 'y'.

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  7. "Climate change in the 21st century will be on the low end of the IPCC projections, and that we will not see anything close to 4C warming (unless natural variability somehow conspires to produce substantial warming)."

    Just think about that for a second.

    Being exeedingly generous in interpretation, Curry's effectively saying that the planet will warm no more than another degree as a result of human 'greenhouse' gas emissions, so therefore natural climate variability will be adding on at least another 2 °C should the 4 °C mark be tipped by the end of the 21st century.

    Erm, which professional climatologist would ascribe a 2 °C increase (and not just a 2 °C ± around a mean...) in 85 years as a feasible change in any natural circumstance but a majorly catastrophic one involving something like a massive asteroid strike or severe vulcanism (both of which would drive the temperature down, unless it was an especially carbon dioxidey vulcanism, but then that begs the question why human-emitted CO2 won't warm the planet...)?*

    Curry's crackers.

    On the subject of her 'expertise', it's telling that when she talks about climate change she never actually engages the technical aspects of the science. She's all vague waffle, but never addresses the nuts-and-bolts science in which she's supposed to have this lauded 'expertise'. Further, her spiel on uncertainty, which is her primary area of first-authorship publication for the last ten years, never seems to include much technical drilling either. Indeed she never even seems to much touch on the technical details on the uncertainty papers from a decade or so ago and on which she appears as a co-author. Given that she's taken the uncertainty meme to heart one would expect that she would show regular reference to the corpus of uncertainty research, especially hers, and confront the physics that she disputes with her mighty uncertainty trucheon. Even the "stadium wave" was a piece of pattern-fitting waffle that had a shorter life than a damp squib, and spawned no public display of technical competence.

    Curry's nothing but warmish air; a smoke pellet for testing chimneys, that puts out a thick cloud but which is based on nothing more that a few pinches of sugar and an oxidiser.

    Oscar Zoroaster Phadrig Isaac Norman Henkle Emmannuel Ambroise Diggs would be proud.

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    1. Heh, missed the target sub-thread, and if I'd refreshed I'd have found that Adelady and Sou said as much anyway...

      Still, the point bears repeating.

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    2. Oh, and...

      *My English teachers would be having kittens reading that mess above!

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    3. In her shouty performance at Ted Cruz's circus last week Judith was commenting on the fact that the US surface temperature records had a lot of adjustment (though she didn't seem to know that Ted Cruz's chart was only for the USA). What she then said was that because adjustments have been applied it means that the error bars should be larger. She provided no explanation for why corrected records should result in wider error bars. No mathematics. It was all bluff and bluster. She is either extremely ignorant or a deliberate liar. I go for the latter.

      I'm with you, Bernard. For all her talk of uncertainty I don't think she understands the first thing about statistics or how uncertainty is calculated. It's just one of those words she's latched on to to puff up her substance-less waffle.

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    4. "...because adjustments have been applied it means that the error bars should be larger"

      I missed that. That's crazy. Removing known biases for things such as the time of day of observation should reduce, not increase, error bars.

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  8. None of it is legally binding.
    Just a bunch of pointless promises to "try really, really hard, honest guv."
    Yet again another massive gabfest that wasted a lot of peoples' money and produced a lot of CO2

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