2009-12-18

Remixed Danish tourist poster reflects the brutal new Copenhagen police-state Boing Boing

Remixed Danish tourist poster reflects the brutal new Copenhagen police-state


Carsten sez, "My friend, artist Camilla Brodersen created a wonderful, freely-redistributable rehash of an old Danish tourist poster, highlighting the new situation after the new police powers, as demonstrated in the heavy-handed clampdown on protesters at the recent climate change summit in Copenhagen. My friend Amila juxtaposed the mashup with the original poster on her English-language blog, creating a chilling and all too realistic contrast."

Copenhagen before and after (Thanks, Carsten)

As I mentioned earlier, probably not a good place for vacations, unless you like fascism.

Posted via web from TweetingDonal's Temporary Insanities

Politi near fascist behaviour around COP15, Copenhagen sounding like a place to avoid for Tourism.

Indymedia action timeline | live radio stream | icop15 agreggator.

Today's Reclaim Power action held a people's assembly outside the COP15 Bella Centre calling for Climate Justice. Police tried to disrupt marches from outside reaching the COP15, with baton charges, pepper spray and preventive arrests (call for action, press release, video). Despite the COP15 pretence of democracy and inclusion of the global south, the police threatened delegates with arrest, and assaulted with batons when they tried to march out to the joint assembly.

Bella_centre_1of_8_-medium
Blue bloc

Bella-demo2-medium
The blue bloc (courtesy of Modkraft)

2009-12-16_11
People in Bella Centre moving towards main gate

Bluee2-medium
Blue bloc approaching Bella Center

Bf0c0a34-9a6f-43d8-8563-996606d98289-medium
Delegates sit-in protest at the Bella Centre

Related stories:

Early in the morning, multiple marches tried to make their way to the Bella Centre where the COP15 is held. The group meeting at Orestad station (Green) was surrounded by police and some were arrested [videos 1 | 2 | pic], but others managed to move towards COP15. A second bloc (Blue), of more than 1000 people, made their way to the Bella Center whilst resisiting attempts from the police to break it [Video 1 | 2 | 3 | 4] [Pics 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6] The bike bloc was blocked by police and redirected away. At the same time a group of protestors managed to get into the area of the COP15-Summit with a raft [pics]

Police have been repeatedly attacking the crowds with baton charges and pepper spray, as well as arresting protesters throughout the morning, and arresting medics [pics]. Corporate media report 200 to 250 arrests [viedo] Following yesterday's arrest of Tadzio Muller after the Climate Justice Action press conference, at  more spokespeople were violently snatched out of the crowd today. At 18:00 a CJA press conference will address the arrests of 4 media spokespeople that aim to limit their freedom of speech.

Meanwhile at the COP15 Friends of the Earth, Avaaz and Via Campesina were refused entry despite aquiring a second accreditaton. Delegates staged a sit-in protest [http://indymedia.dk/system/photo/2009/12/16/1949/bf0c0a34-9a6f-43d8-8563-996606d98289.jpg">pic, video], whilst 200 others from NGOs, indigenous people and the Global South marched out [Pics 1 | 2 | Videos 1 | 2] but police with batons and pepper spray prevented them from reaching the People's Assembly. An hour later, a protest broke into the COP15 plenary with the slogan "Climate Justice Now!", and the Indian delegation burned its badges [vid].

The People's Assembly took place at midday outside the Bella Centre [Pics 1], without those from inside the Bella Centre - they were prevented from getting out. After speeches, the assembly decided to move towards the centre [vid] of town, while the police have been snatching people, and blocking progress intermittently. 

Timelines Indymedia DK (castellano) | Modkraft.dk (dk | en) | Motkraft.net (se, en) | Global Project (it) | Politiken.dk (dk | en) | Lahaine (castellano)
Previous days' COP15 reporting: 10th, 11th, 12th, 13th, 14th and 15th December 2009

Today is the first day of the ministerial phase of the COP15 summit, that so far has made little progress. The Reclaim Power! Action, aims to take over the summit for this one day to turn it into a people assembly (call for action, latest press release). Similar assemblies have already been taking place outside the UN summit for a week, as part of the Klimaforum09 people's climate summit with an estimated 25.000 people having taken part in discussions.

[ Democracy Now! coverage ] [ Reports from corporate media: 1 | 2 ]

Grabbed the first page of this just in case someone tries to "clean" this off the Web...

Posted via web from TweetingDonal's Temporary Insanities

2009-12-16

NASA Animates Breakthroughs in Greenhouse Gas Research with New Tool (Video) : TreeHugger #openclimate

Thanks to AIRS research, scientists have been able to see important information about CO2, including that it doesn't mix uniformly in the troposphere, that the southern hemisphere is a net recipient of CO2 from the north, and that there's a carbon dioxide belt that circles the globe.

Researchers also discovered the role of water vapor in atmospheric models. The data are the strongest observational evidence to date for how water vapor responds to a warming climate, finding that most of the warming caused by CO2 actually happens as a result of "feedbacks" with water vapor being one of them, which amplifies initial warming.

"AIRS temperature and water vapor observations have corroborated climate model predictions that the warming of our climate produced as carbon dioxide levels rise will be greatly exacerbated -- in fact, more than doubled -- by water vapor," said Andrew Dessler, a climate scientist at Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas.

More info about NASA's new CO2 data set.

Posted via web from TweetingDonal's Temporary Insanities

Satellite sees "lumpy" layer of CO2 : Discovery News

Scientists reported their findings this week at the annual meeting of the American Geophysical Union in San Francisco.

NASA image of AIRS instrument's detection of global CO2 distribution July 2009 This NASA image shows the the monthly average of carbon dioxide in the middle of the troposphere made from data acquired by the infrared sounder during July 2009.  These maps are the first-ever depictions of the global distribution of CO2 based solely on observations.

The observations show a large band of carbon dioxide undulating around the Northern Hemisphere, where most of it originates, but also a smaller band that researchers didn't expect to find around the Southern Hemisphere.  They can follow big lumps of CO2 moving across the Pacific from Asia and across the Atlantic from North America, and around again.

NASA team leader Moustafa Chahine of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena said the data "can be used to develop better models to identify 'sinks,' regions of the Earth system that store carbon dioxide."

Andrew Dessler, a Texas A&M climate scientist studying the data, said the observations "have corroborated climate model predictions that the warming of our climate produced as carbon dioxide levels rise will be greatly exacerbated -- in fact, more than doubled -- by water vapor."  This finding "essentially guarantees" warming "by several degrees Celsius" in the next century unless some unknown "strong negative feedback mechanism emerges elsewhere in Earth's climate system."

News from the AGU meeting. And not good news.

Posted via web from TweetingDonal's Temporary Insanities

» Copenhagen summit is failing. Let’s make it the largest petition in history in the next 72 hours!

cop15_blueWith three days to go, the crucial Copenhagen summit is failing. Tomorrow, the world’s leaders arrive for an unprecedented 60 hours of direct negotiations.

Experts agree that without a tidal wave of public pressure for a deal, the summit will not stop catastrophic global warming of 2 degrees. Click below to sign the petition for a real deal in Copenhagen – the campaign already has a staggering 10 million supporters – let’s make it the largest petition in history in the next 72 hours!

Every single name is actually being read out at the summit — sign on at the link below and forward this email to everyone! http://www.avaaz.org/en/save_copenhagen_now/?cl=402340316&v=4920

An Avaaz team is meeting daily with negotiators inside the summit who will organize a spectacular petition delivery to world leaders as they arrive, building a giant wall of boxes of names and reading out the names of every person who signs.

With the largest petition in history, leaders will have no doubt that the whole world is watching.

Millions watched the Avaaz vigil inside the summit on TV yesterday, where Archbishop Desmond Tutu told hundreds of delegates and assembled children: “We marched in Berlin, and the wall fell. “We marched for South Africa, and apartheid fell. “We marched at Copenhagen — and we WILL get a Real Deal.” Copenhagen is seeking the biggest mandate in history to stop the greatest threat humanity has ever faced. History will be made in the next few days.

How will our children remember this moment?

Let’s tell them we did all we could. http://www.avaaz.org/en/save_copenhagen_now/?cl=402340316&v=4920

With hope, Ricken, Alice, Ben, Paul, Luis, Iain, Veronique, Graziela, Pascal, Paula, Benjamin, Raj, Raluca, Taren, David, Josh and the whole Avaaz team.

Sign up folks!

Posted via web from TweetingDonal's Temporary Insanities

2009-12-15

For the US audience :) Meet your COP15 Negotiator tracker

adopt a negotiator

United States

Lead Tracker – Ben Jervey

Picture 1

Ben Jervey works to better communicate climate, energy, and environmental issues to mainstream audiences. He writes a weekly column for GOOD Magazine called “The New Ideal,” and has freelanced for many other magazines, newspapers, and websites.

Ben has also worked with many environment, education, and clean energy non-profit organizations. He serves as Community Editor of OnEarth Magazine, where he is launching an environmental citizen journalism platform. His reporting and work on climate change and clean energy have brought him from the streets of New York to the glaciers of eastern Greenland, to the mountain villages of Vietnam. A few years back he wrote a book–The Big Green Apple–on living a lower impact life in New York City. A bicycle enthusiast, Ben has ridden across the United States and through much of Europe

The US Delegation

Jonathan Pershing, sporting the logo cap of his last job.

Jonathan Pershing, sporting the logo cap of his last job.

The US climate negotiating efforts from Bonn through Copenhagen are being lead by Jonathan Pershing, the Deputy Envoy on Climate Change. Pershing’s a longtime veteran of international negotiations with 30 years of experience under his belt working on climate and energy issues. Technically speaking, Todd Stern, as the State Department’s Special Envoy on Climate Change, is the head of the team, but on the ground at the talks, Pershing is steering the ship. (Stern has been all over the world meeting bilaterally with foreign governments and has been instrumental in hammering out some key energy and climate partnerships and agreements.)

Worth noting: Pershing was a lead author of the IPCC’s Fourth Assessment Report (and, thus, a Nobel Prize winner along with his colleagues and Al Gore), working specifically on Chapter 13 in Working Group III, which, translated from wonk-speak, chapter that famously stated that Annex I countries as a group need to reduce their collective greenhouse gas emissions by 25-40% from 1990 levels by 2020. (See page 776, Box 13.7.) He also served as Director of World Resources Institute’s Climate and Energy Program for nearly six years, and before that as head of the energy and environment division at the International Energy Agency. Clearly, Pershing is someone who understands and respects what the science demands. And I don’t for a moment envy his assignment for Copenhagen, as a State Department-appointed negotiator charged with representing a US position that is, due to domestic politics, far from that which physics and chemistry tell us is necessary, and far inadequate to most of the international community.

Posted via web from TweetingDonal's Temporary Insanities

It's Here! Now you can download "The Age of Stupid" #350ppm #stupidshow #cop15



Can't make it to a cinema screening?
DVD not available in your country?
Or just too lazy to leave the house?
Good news! The Age of Stupid is now available for you to download and watch from the comfort of your computer screen. Choose Pay-per-view to watch the film in your browser window, Download to download the film to your computer, or choose Torrent to rip us off.
I've waited a long time for this!
Now you can all see the show I've been talking about!

2009-12-14

Could you please word that more vaguely?



Originally posted at Bad Astronomy, Phil has found a treasure of a cartoon, and it applies now much more than ever, especially with the second week of COP15 starting.


2009-12-12

For Aspiring Writers and Photograhers: SEED.COM - Where Your Content Flourishes

You might be a writer. A photographer. A filmmaker. Or all three. No matter where your talent lies, there's a place for it on SEED. The urge to create something lives in all of us. There's nothing quite like unearthing your passions, expressing them, being heard, and having your work be appreciated. We can help you do all of that. All you have to do is keep imagining.

In a way, creating is the easy part. Finding a place for your work to live is the challenge. But thanks to our extensive network of web sites like Moviefone, Spinner, and others within the AOL network, your ideas could be showcased on some of the most entertaining, informative, and vibrant destinations on the Internet. Sites that reach over 100 million people around the world each month. Your work is original. Shouldn't it be featured in places equally as original?

Creating is rewarding, but we can make it really rewarding. That's because we can actually pay you for your work. Answer an assignment we list and you can get paid. Post your own work at a price you determine and you can get worldwide exposure and attract an audience. Or let us find a place for your work on our expansive content network of hundreds of web sites. Just set up an account and get paid. It's that easy.

To Learn More

Something to think about :)

Posted via web from TweetingDonal's Temporary Insanities

2009-12-11

The Common Link with Climate Change, Peak Oil, Limits To Growth, Etc. - Belief Systems | Energy Bulletin

DENIAL/COGNITIVE DISSONANCE






Denial is a defense mechanism where a person is faced with a fact that is too painful to accept and rejects it instead, insisting that it is not true despite what may be overwhelming evidence. A related psychological concept is that of cognitive dissonance, originally coined by social psychologist Leon Festinger. Cognitive dissonance describes the negative tension that results from having two conflicting thoughts at the same time, or from engaging in behavior that conflicts with one's beliefs.

From Wikipedia,
"The theory of cognitive dissonance states that contradicting cognitions serve as a driving force that compels the mind to acquire or invent new thoughts or beliefs, or to modify existing beliefs, so as to reduce the amount of dissonance (conflict) between cognitions. Experiments have attempted to quantify this hypothetical drive. Some of these have examined how beliefs often change to match behavior when beliefs and behavior are in conflict."

Jared Diamond, in "Collapse" quotes the behaviour of people living below a dam that may break:
"Consider a narrow river valley below a high dam, such that if the dam burst, the resulting flood of water would drown people for a considerable distance downstream. When attitude pollsters ask people downstream of the dam how concerned they are about the dam’s bursting, it’s not surprising that fear of a dam burst is lowest far downstream, and increases among residents increasingly close to the dam. Surprisingly, though, after you get to just a few miles below the dam, where fear of the dam’s breaking is found to be the highest, the concern then falls off to zero as you approach closer to the dam! That is, the people living immediately under the dam, the ones most certain to be drowned in a dam burst, profess unconcern. That’s because of psychological denial: the only way of preserving one’s sanity while looking up every day at the dam is to deny the possibility that it could burst. If something that you perceive arouses in you a painful emotion, you may subconsciously suppress or deny your perception in order to avoid the unbearable pain, even though the practical results of ignoring your perception may prove ultimately disastrous. The emotions most often responsible are terror, anxiety, and grief."

Reaching social limits to growth is potentially a world-sized dam break. It's no wonder initial reactions to hearing how the world we know might change are met with skepticism. (Note: interestingly, and something I intend to explore on a subsequent post, is the concept of denial is related to the study of addiction.)

COGNITIVE LOAD THEORY




"Chocolate Cake?"
"or Fruit Salad?"

Cognitive load theory suggests humans have a maximum capacity of working memory. At around 7 'chunks' of information, our working memory maxes out and we can't accept anything else without losing some of the previous 'chunks'. Try remembering the following numbers 1-9-1-4-7-6-7-5-9-5-9. Its quite hard to do. But if they are rearranged in chunks 1-914-767-5959, it becomes much more manageable. Numerous studies have measured this phenomenon - a notable study by Shiv and Fedhorkhin(1) asked a group of people to memorize a two digit number, walk down a corridor and at the end choose a dessert - either chocolate cake or fruit salad. A different sample of people were then asked to memorize a 7 digit number and walk down the corridor (while internally reciting this 7 digit number) and also choose a dessert. When required to memorize the 7 digit number, almost twice as many people chose the chocolate cake as in the sample only memorizing the 2 digit number - the implication being - 'my short term memory is full - I cant access my rational, long term decision-making hardware - just give me the damn cake'.

Of course, in a society with cell phones, taxi-cabs, internet, coffee, soccer practice, Grays Anatomy, corporate ladders and a plethora of other chocolate cake-like stimuli, meaningful contemplation and education about energy depletion and our planet's environment usually represents the fruit salad. Many people are just too cognitively taxed to take on much more.

Particularly useful way to sort things out... whether all aspects of the theory are correct, this works well when modeling the American People.

Warning! Brain Damage possible! Karl Rove On "O'Reilly" (VIDEO): Bush Was A Green Leader #cop15

WATCH Rove rave about Bush's green leadership on The O'Reilly Factor:


There's nothing to say...

Merde.

Posted via web from TweetingDonal's Temporary Insanities

2009-12-10

Stephen H. Schneider: Hammering Out a Deal for Our Future #cop15 #climate

Hockey Stick vs. Fingerprinting

Unfortunately, Climate Denier Gate is being used by some on blogs and the usual suspects in media to lionize the perpetrators as some kind of heroic stealth investigative reporters who have just in time saved the world from the “big mistake” of fashioning climate policy in Copenhagen. The amazing scientific thing that nobody seems to be covering is that the "hockey stick" was never used as proof of anthropogenic global warming by IPCC—it was the "fingerprinting" studies of many scientists dating back to 1995—three years before the first hockey stick was even published. A fingerprint is an attempt to combine models of climate change with observed data. The models are driven by natural forces like solar variations or volcanic eruptions, and their retrodictions of what should have happened between 1900 and 2000 are compared to what actually happened. Then the models are driven by anthropogenic forces such as increasing greenhouse gases as has been observed and again compared to what actually happened to the 20th century climate. And finally models are driven by combined natural and anthropogenic forces—and as expected, the latter has the highest correlation with observations, the former the least and the middle one in between correlations. That is a smoking gun—but for AGW—and the number of such studies appearing in the peer reviewed scientific literature since 1995 has multiplied. Ergo, IPCC has increased its confidence in AGW over successive studies, with the “very likely” the most recent 2007 assessment.

For those who, because of lack of time or attention span, aren't getting to the bottom of this article.

Posted via web from TweetingDonal's Temporary Insanities

2009-12-09

China’s 1000 Enterprise Energy Conservation Program Beats Target | ChinaFAQs

Covering fully one-third of primary energy use in China, the 1000 Enterprise Program set the goal of reducing energy consumption by 100 million tons coal equivalent by the end of 2010. In November, China’s National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) announced that the program had exceeded that goal two years early – by the end of 2008, the program had saved 106 million tons coal equivalent, resulting in avoiding 265 million metric tons of CO2 emissions.

The NDRC’s report (which was also covered by the People’s Daily Overseas Edition in print on November 26) states that the “1000 Enterprises” program saved 36.5 million tons coal equivalent in 2008, the third year of the program. These results come from reported energy data from the 922 companies currently in the program (of the original “1000 enterprises,” some merged, went bankrupt or underwent other structural changes). 96.1% of these 992 companies met or exceeded the required targets for the program, with only 36 companies failing to meet their assigned goals.

NDRC and its experts committee attributed the program’s success to five factors that could be a textbook list for an effective industrial energy efficiency program:

  1. Focusing leadership on the energy efficiency objective;
  2. Assigning clear responsibility, along with penalties and rewards;
  3. Increasing investment in energy efficiency;
  4. Strengthening management and the implementation of specific efficiency systems and programs within firms, including data management;
  5. Increasing awareness among all employees.

The successful first two years of the 1000 Enterprise Program were reported and analyzed by U.S. experts including Lynn Price and her colleagues at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory last year, and in WRI’s analysis of China’s overall energy program. Both analyses found the 1000 Enterprises program will be a crucial element to China’s goal of reducing national energy intensity (i.e., lowering the amount of energy used to produce GDP) by 20% between 2006 and 2010.

In discussions with the ChinaFAQs expert network this past week, scientists from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory reported the results that, along with China’s program of closing the smallest and most inefficient factories, this “1000 Enterprises” program has contributed to the bulk of China’s energy efficiency gains over the past several years. In looking to China’s new target of reducing CO2 intensity by 40-45% between 2005 and 2020 the challenge will be to expand the reach of such industrial efficiency programs beyond only China’s largest companies; to improve efficiency in other sectors, such as buildings; and to make improvements in the overall industrial structure by encouraging the development of less energy-intensive sectors, including services.

China is starting to beat its own targets on the way to a 20% cut... hmmmm

Posted via web from TweetingDonal's Temporary Insanities

Crack Research: Good news about knuckle cracking.: Scientific American

Crack Research: Good news about knuckle cracking.

One man's long, noisy, asymmetrical adventure gets him a high five

By Steve Mirsky   
 


Matt Collins
The latest physical anthropology research indicates that the human evolutionary line never went through a knuckle-walking phase. Be that as it may, we definitely entered, and have yet to exit, a knuckle-cracking phase. I would run out of knuckles (including those on my feet) trying to count how many musicians wouldn’t dream of playing a simple scale without throwing off a xylophonelike riff on their knuckles first. But despite the popularity of this practice, most known knuckle crackers have probably been told by some expert—whose advice very likely began, “I’m not a doctor, but ...”—that the behavior would lead to arthritis.
One M.D. convincingly put that amateur argument to rest with a study published back in 1998 in the journal Arthritis & Rheumatism entitled “Does Knuckle Cracking Lead to Arthritis of the Fingers?” The work of sole author Donald Unger was back in the news in early October when he was honored as the recipient of this year’s Ig Nobel Prize in Medicine.
Read more at scientificamerican.com
Is there anyone anywhere who hasn't been told not to crack knuckles? LOL

2009-12-08

2009-12-07

Hey Colorado! Live, From Copenhagen: Mayor Hickenlooper and FasTracks #cop15 #climate

Live, From Copenhagen: Mayor Hickenlooper and FasTracks

December 7, 2009 · Leave a Comment

That’s right — Mayor Hickenlooper is in Denmark to talk about FasTracks at the worldwide global warming summit. He’ll be on a panel called “Buses, Trains, and Commuter Vans: Reducing Carbon through U.S. Public Transit,” sponsored by the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT). And you can watch it live via webcast.

I had no idea... time for a webcast I see!

Posted via web from TweetingDonal's Temporary Insanities

12/07/2009: EPA to Host U.S. Center Events at the Copenhagen Climate Negotiations

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will host 13 events at the annual Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, which will be held at the U.S. Center in Copenhagen. The center will provide an interactive forum to highlight the strong steps being taken at home and the United States’ international leadership role to combat global climate change.

EPA staff will be participating in and hosting side events throughout the conference, from December 7 until December 18. Topics to be covered include:

  • U.S. government and state climate efforts
  • U.S. fuel efficiency policy
  • Climate change and air quality
  • Greenhouse gas inventories, measurement and reporting
  • Short-lived climate forcers and their impact on the Arctic
  • Impacts of, and adaptation responses to, climate change

For those of us who couldn't or shouldn't go to COP15, here's a feel for how the US is officially presented.

Posted via web from TweetingDonal's Temporary Insanities

12/07/2009: EPA: Greenhouse Gases Threaten Public Health and the Environment / Science overwhelmingly shows greenhouse gas concentrations at unprecedented levels due to human activity

EPA: Greenhouse Gases Threaten Public Health and the Environment

Science overwhelmingly shows greenhouse gas concentrations at unprecedented levels due to human activity

WASHINGTON – After a thorough examination of the scientific evidence and careful consideration of public comments, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced today that greenhouse gases (GHGs) threaten the public health and welfare of the American people. EPA also finds that GHG emissions from on-road vehicles contribute to that threat.

GHGs are the primary driver of climate change, which can lead to hotter, longer heat waves that threaten the health of the sick, poor or elderly; increases in ground-level ozone pollution linked to asthma and other respiratory illnesses; as well as other threats to the health and welfare of Americans.

At last, movement. Perhaps the Senate will try stepping up to this one, now that the carrot has been replaced with a whip.

Posted via web from TweetingDonal's Temporary Insanities

6. Climate Change -- Those hacked e-mails: YouTube #climategate #swifthack

Potholer54 is geologist turned science journalist that is semi-retired to Oz. His videos are always clear and to the point. You'll want to watch this one :)

Posted via web from TweetingDonal's Temporary Insanities

L'Ombre de l'Olivier: The Shadow of the Olive Tree

07 December 2009

"Harry" gets a rewrite

The most important news on the CRU leak (aka Climategate) over the weekend was that the UK Met Office is not just opening up its data it is also checking the processing and rewriting the code.

I strongly suspect that this only happened because of the leak and that all the discussions about "HARRY_READ_ME" were influential in this decision. It will be very interesting to observe just how the process will develop and whether they take on board the suggestions of many of us who've looked at the code about the choice of a database or of language use.

The really good news is that we ought to be able to build some kind of third party hooks onto the database so as to identify the problem stations and so on. The one interesting thing that I note is that we are not, as far as I can tell, seeing a release of the sea data - only the land data. I'm going to email them to verify whether this is the case or not because it would seem to be quite important regarding the global temperature.

via di2.nu

While I don't agree with this "Englishman" on all points, I have to agree that the CRU information that the leaker/hacker published is pretty grim when it comes to reproducibility. You pretty much have to have the author present to ensure you're using the same info as published. Some help from the Computer Science field would seem in order :)

Posted via web from TweetingDonal's Temporary Insanities

Interactive Chart: Analyzing Comparability of Annex I Emission Reduction Pledges | World Resources Institute

The Bali Action Plan calls for “ensuring the comparability of efforts” among developed Parties. The ability to compare pledges is seen as a vital element of ensuring a fair, equitable, and transparent global agreement. There are many metrics of comparability that one could examine, including level of effort taken domestically versus via international offsets, abatement costs, historical responsibility, among others, and metrics could be combined and weighted differently. Here we examine two metrics of comparability: percent change in absolute emission reductions and per capita emission reductions.

Definitions

Annex I Party: The industrialized countries listed in this annex to the Convention which were committed to return their greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by the year 2000 as per Article 4.2 (a) and (b). They have also accepted emissions targets for the period 2008-12 as per Article 3 and Annex B of the Kyoto Protocol.

Pledge: For the purposes of this analysis, a proposed commitment for emission reductions, to be realized by 2020. Although the term has been used in the context of voluntary measures, we use it to refer to a target proposal regardless of the legal form used.

Data and Methods

To compare and aggregate the pledges, data were collected on Annex I pledges, historical greenhouse gas emissions, and socioeconomic indicators. To the extent that pledges for emission reduction commitments are to be met through international offsets, we assume these reductions are real and additional.

The Annex I Parties analyzed here represent the majority of Annex I emissions, but it should be noted that the analysis focuses upon larger Annex I emitters and, therefore, does not capture all pledges.

Absolute emissions reductions are calculated by first determining each country’s projected emissions in 2020 based on its stated pledge(s) and baseline year. We then divide the difference between the 2020 projected emissions and the country’s emissions in the base year by the 2020 projected emissions.

Per capita emissions reductions are calculated in a similar way, using population data in the base year, and projected population estimates in 2020.

For more information, please read our working paper.

I see we (the U.S.) are leading the way backwards again...

Posted via web from TweetingDonal's Temporary Insanities

2009-12-04

ClimateGate: Addressing the ‘not a hacker’ meme - Michael Roston - Newsbroke - True/Slant

Is it or isn't it?

Time for the CRU crew to come out with it! Is it a crime or was it a whistle blower? Everyone is waffling around about it, and frankly the uncertainty is causing more problems than either admission would.

Currently reading...

Image by p373 via Flickr

Since I published my article Friday about the concerted effort of climate change deniers to cover up the criminal origins of the leaked ‘ClimateGate’ e-mails and files, I’ve received quite a few comments that have taken the argument a step further, stating outright that it wasn’t a hacker, but an East Anglia insider who leaked the files as some sort of whistleblower.

This rebuttal has even been picked up by Chris Horner of the climate change-denying Competitive Enterprise Institute in an op-ed for the Washington Examiner, showing that beyond covering up the criminal act of hacking that resulted in the release of the Climate Research Unit’s files, ‘ClimateGate’ warriors are now taking to mainstream media outlets to fight back against the idea that an act of crime is the source of their evidentiary bounty.

Of course, climate change deniers have a clear interest in portraying their source as Woodward and Bernstein’s ‘Deep Throat’ rather than Richard Nixon’s Plumbers. If their treasure trove of e-mails and files comes from a criminal action, and perhaps a criminal conspiracy, it casts a heavy, looming shadow over their efforts to pillory the climatologists implicated. More than anything, it will suggest that the climate change deniers are so desperate to make their case that they had to rely on a possible criminal conspiracy in order to prompt a thorough-going investigation of the science behind the theory of anthropogenic climate change. And that’s not how they want to be remembered.

Before I discuss the theorizing that it wasn’t a hacker, let’s first look at the evidence that it was a crime that led to the e-mails being leaked online.

First, the University of East Anglia has stated that they were hacked. In a statement published on the university’s website, Trevor Davies, the universities ‘pro-vice-chancellor for research,’ and a climatologist himself, discussed the computer security failure that resulted in the e-mails getting out:

Given the degree to which we collaborate with other organisations around the world, there is also an understandable interest in the computer security systems we have in place in CRU and UEA. Although we were confident that our systems were appropriate, experience has shown that determined and skilled people, who are prepared to engage in criminal activity, can sometimes hack into apparently secure systems. Highly-protected government organisations around the world have also learned this to their cost.

via CRU climate data already ‘over 95%’ available (28 November) – University of East Anglia (UEA).

True, not a blunt statement that “we were hacked.” But if East Anglia didn’t want it known they were hacked, they would not have mentioned it at all in their statement on the subject as subsequent proof that the release of the file came from a whistleblower would put them back on the defensive.

Furthermore, shortly after the file was widely publicized, UEA released the following statement:

A spokesman for the University of East Anglia said: ‘We are aware that information from a server used for research information in one area of the university has been made available on public websites.

‘Because of the volume of this information we cannot currently confirm that all of this material is genuine.

‘This information has been obtained and published without our permission and we took immediate action to remove the server in question from operation.

‘We are undertaking a thorough internal investigation and we have involved the police in this inquiry.’

If a crime did not occur, East Anglia would not involve the British police. And if they hadn’t identified the work of a cyber criminal, rather than some pissed-off insider, they wouldn’t be speaking of a specific server where the files and e-mails were hosted.

Beyond the Climate Research Unit and the University of East Anglia’s statements, there is Senator Jim Inhofe who has been bellowing for an investigation of the ClimateGate files (an investigation I support, subject to some previously stated conditions). In spite of Senator Inhofe’s earlier sly praise for the timing of the hackers who stole the East Anglia files, he released the following statement about his proposed investigation:

I certainly don’t condone the manner in which these emails were released; however, now that they are in the public domain, lawmakers have an obligation to determine the extent to which the so-called ‘consensus’ of global warming, formed with billions of taxpayer dollars, was contrived in the biased minds of the world’s leading climate scientists.

It would seem even Senator Inhofe is ready to acknowledge that there’s something unseemly about the way the CRU files came to light. If there was any possibility that East Anglia leak was the work of a disconsolate whistleblower, Senator Inhofe would not be hedging his bets. Instead he would be calling for the protection of the rights of a whistleblower he believes revealed a fraud.

Moving on, a variety of bloggers have implied that there is reason to believe that someone other than a hacker was involved in securing and leaking the files.

Take Terry Hurlbut, one of the hordes of ‘citizen journalists’ in the Examiner.com network. Hurlbut offers speculation that the behavior involved in releasing the files is not the work of a hacker:

The anonymous tipster, whom many people initially assumed had “hacked” into the computers at the Climatic Research Unit (CRU) of the University of East Anglia (repeatedly called the “Hadley CRU,” by mistake), might in fact be a CRU insider who released the files for his own reasons.

The user, known only as “FOIA” (which now appears to be a reference to the British equivalent of the US Freedom of Information Act), left only one comment on The Air Vent to announce his release of his 61-MB ZIP archive. He has never been heard from since, nor has anyone stepped forward claiming to be that person since the story became widely known.

Persons knowledgeable in information security hold that this is not the behavior of a hacker. A hacker normally boasts of his act, even if he were hired or otherwise suborned to commit his act by someone else. These two reports provide illustrations of such behavior.

[...]

In all that time, the original poster of the Russian FTP link never made another comment in any forum. As discussed above, this is not typical of a hacker. A hacker would be boasting about his act, and loudly. Instead, his file sat in that anonymous FTP account for more than forty-eight hours, and the poster never made any further attempt to publicize his find. Hence the conclusion, by this Examiner and a host of other commenters, including IP security professionals, that this unknown user was one who had had access to CRU computers, in accordance with his duties at the CRU.

The attempted claim here is that the hacker hasn’t boasted about the job, and all hackers boast, so he or she does not exist. Of course, there is a clear difference here between the cases Hurlbut cites – the teenager who hacked Sarah Palin’s private e-mail account for fun, and Russian hackers who make a living off of credit card fraud – and cyber criminals who are acting like Richard Nixon’s ‘Plumbers.’ If you’re a Plumber, your client has an expectation of your discretion, so I wouldn’t be shocked if the hacker in question kept his or her mouth shut. Hurlbut is otherwise referring to ‘IP security professionals,’ but he doesn’t cite any who have commented on the East Anglia files in particular. If they are ‘IP security professionals’ who already deny the existence of global climate change, their professional opinion is certainly colored by their political viewpoint, which is of course why we need an independent investigation of this affair.

Beyond Hurlbut’s ‘no boast, no hack’ theory, he and others have suggested that the file was too well organized to have been put together by a hacker:

Other commenters have observed that the very form and organization of the archive, which expands to 168 MB of text files, word-processing documents, PDF files, raw data, and even program code, indicate that someone already having access to the system logged in through his usual channels, made the archive, and then logged out. The user’s choice of words indicate someone having a motive to disclose to the world certain activities and mindsets that the user found distasteful, at least.

Kevin Grandia, not a climate change denier, offered a similar perspective:

The folder of information contains over 3,800 separate files and it is clear that someone has taken a lot of time to pull together what they thought would be the most damaging. This is not the work of a hacker, unless that hacker is extremely well-versed in climate science, and specifically the conspiracy theories of the climate denial movement.

This package of stolen data and emails would have taken hundreds of hours to compile and someone out there knows exactly how all this went down.

What both of these statements fail to take into account is the possibility that the data and e-mails could have been hacked by one person, and sorted and compiled by another or others who knew his or her way around the debate. It’s also kind of funny that as a digital mob gets together to crowdsource their way through these files, they can’t imagine that some enterprising cabal working in concert with a hacker wouldn’t already have done the same thing.

Honestly, I don’t know, and I’m not afraid to say so. After all, if Hurlbut is relying on the word of ‘IP security professionals,’ can’t they examine the file and state unequivocally that the files were all pieced together in a manner consistent with their theory? As long as we’re in the world of speculation, it’s worth pointing out that there are credible alternative explanations to why the ‘FOI2009.zip’ file looked the way it did.

There is one last remaining theory, offered up at ‘Watts Up With That’, another blog that denies the existence of anthropogenic climate change. ‘Charles the moderator’ argues that it was neither a hacker, nor a whistleblower who released the file. Rather, someone mistakenly posted to an open server an attempt to comply with a known Freedom of Information claim filed by the Climate Audit blog:

It would take a hacker massive amounts of work to parse through decades of emails and files but stealing or acquiring a single file is a distinct possibility and does not require massive conspiracy.  The same constraints of time and effort would apply to any internal whistle blower.  However, an ongoing process of internally collating this information for an FOI response is entirely consistent with what we find in the file.

In the past I have worked at organizations where the computer network grew organically in a disorganized fashion over time.  Security policies often fail as users take advantage of shortcuts to simplify their day to day activities. One of these shortcuts is to share files using an FTP server.  Casual shortcuts in these instances may lead to gaping security holes.  This is not necessarily  intentional, but a  consequence of human nature to take a shortcut here and there. This casual internal sharing can also lead to unintentional sharing of files with the rest of the Internet as noted in the Phil Jones, CRU mole, example above.  Often the FTP server for an organization may also be the organization’s external web server as the two functions are often combined on the same CPU or hardware box.  When this occurs, if the organization does not lock down their network thoroughly, the security breaches which could happen by accident are far more likely to occur.

While it’s rather substantial leap to believe that the file had been aggregated just so by East Anglia staff so they could quickly distribute a variety of self-incriminating e-mails on the world, I won’t dismiss outright that there could have been an FOI file. But, if Charles is right, and there was a hole in CRU’s information security protocols, I don’t understand why this makes it any less of a malignant act. If someone was sitting on CRU’s servers waiting for an opportunity to strike, they sound a lot like a hacker to me, even if the law wouldn’t ultimately find them to be criminals. And knowing, as we do, that someone was sending BBC reporter Paul Hudson privileged e-mails in October makes it sound like someone was inside CRU’s servers prior to the November denial of the FOI appeal.

But the theory offered up by Charles of Watts Up With That isn’t one that’s being endorsed by the climate change denial movement. They’re stuck on the idea that some brave East Anglia Deep Throat just couldn’t take it anymore, and blew the whistle. They need that, because some anonymous soul snooping on some climatologists’ servers just doesn’t sound very good.

And it’s worth keeping in mind that if UEA is housing a whistleblower, that person has a legal framework in Britain that protects them for revealing fraud, the Public Interest Disclosure Act 1998. More than that, much as Daniel Ellsberg first went to Members of Congress with the Pentagon Papers, or Sgt. Joe Darby went to the Army’s Criminal Investigative Division in order to blow the whistle on abuses of detainees at Abu Ghraib, a theoretical UEA whistleblower could have gone to university officials, Conservative MPs in England, or even to someone like Senator Jim Inhofe in the United States. Instead we know that someone anonymously seeded a file with lots of e-mails and files on the websites of both climate change believers, and climate change deniers those who debate the scientific consensus on climate change. We also know that a BBC reporter had received some of the e-mails in question in October, and hadn’t done anything with them. It sounds like someone was on a fishing expedition, and finally found a shallow pool – the Air Vent – in which to drop their bait.

I’m ready to admit that I was wrong if evidence comes out to the contrary. You will see a blog post in this space if it turns out that way. But for the moment, it’s difficult to question that some people who have a lot to gain from denying the science of anthropogenic climate change also have a lot to gain from seeing their efforts buoyed by a whistleblower rather than a hacker. And it’s a little suspicious how many of them are getting sensitive about the leak being called a hack, and not an act of conscience.

Time for the CRU crew to come out with it! Is it a crime or was it a whistle blower? Everyone is waffling around about it, and frankly the uncertainty is causing more problems than either admission would.

Posted via web from TweetingDonal's Temporary Insanities

2009-12-03

YouTube - Warming hits Greenland's hunters #climate

Warming hits Greenland's hunters
Even Reuters has kooks following them around talking about the scam/conspiracy/New World Order!

A new video up from Reuters... #climate change

Posted via web from TweetingDonal's Temporary Insanities

2009-12-02

Witchcraft and Woman Healers

Witchcraft and the Patriarchal System

There will always be a debate on whether the witchcraft trials in Europe and England caused or were caused by the low position of women in society. This debate can and will continue to rage, but one fact remains: the majority of those convicted of witchcraft were female. You may want to argue that women were accused because they were already vulnerable to accusations due to their weak position economically, socially and politically in their communities. There exactly lies the question. To achieve total patriarchal control, women had to be seen as the opposite of good. Males had to prove their superiority, in order to both establish and retain the patriarchal system. One way of achieving this goal was through medicine and religion.

In this article a key area will be discussed, namely women's contribution to the health care of their society, on the one hand, and how it was eroded by male dominance, on the other hand. The power of healing and ultimately the power over life and death, mad or sane, fertile or infertile, was taken away from women in England long before the 16th and 17th Century. Like all key areas of society, a monopoly was formed and controlled by males. Women were barred from legal, political and medical institutions. The practice of medicine not only divides genders, but also the socio-economic groups. As medicine progressed, a clear division was formed between male practioners, who treated the wealthy and powerful, and women, who treated the masses.

A simple cycle was introduced: anyone practicing medicine without training would be classed as a witch. Therefore, only males could practice medicine, because only males could enter education. Women could not enter education, because they were only women. The patriarchal system argued that women were not intelligent enough to study and that those who practiced medicine were witches. Thus the cycle continued; it could count on the support of the male ruling elite and the churches. The churches, both protestant and catholic, considered women as a threat: sexually, politically and socially. It was a threat that, according to the church, had to be contained and controlled by all the institutions that constructed society. Indeed it was the church who controlled the universities and it was the priest who had to accompany all medical professionals, as only the priest could receive the soul.

Society however needed woman healers. There was no other help for the sick. The church preached a better life and the qualified medicine professionals would only heal the wealthy. However, a woman healer by her sheer existence understood that she would always face the possibility of conviction as a witch. Her charms - which were not controlled by the church - would be deemed as magic and evil. The practical nature of her healing and independence from prayer placed her directly in opposition to the church.

Without the presence of women healers, there would have been little if no progression in medicine during these centuries. It was the women who used empiricalist methods to test herbs and treatments. It was the women who passed on their knowledge to the next generation of women, enabling tested methods to be used centuries after their first discovery.

Up until the 18th century, witchcraft was a common feature of the western world. Clusters of witchcraft trials would appear at times when the society experienced social, political and economic pressure. In Europe, under the Holy Roman law, those accused of witchcraft would be tortured, cross examined and burned to death. In England from the 16th century, witchcraft was considered a crime requiring a clear legal procedure, with a court, a judge and a legal hanging. Whether in Europe or in England, the 11th or 16th century, one predominant factor remained: the majority of the victims were women who practiced or were thought to have practiced medicine.

References:
Summers,M. (1926.) The Geography of Witchcraft London: Routledge.

Levack,B.P. (2001.) New Perspectives on Witchcraft, Magic, and Demonology New York: Routledge.

 

I have always been told this is true, it's nice to see citations to back it up a bit.

Posted via web from TweetingDonal's Temporary Insanities

» So what IS happening in Antarctica?

So what IS happening in Antarctica?

Antarctica 5If we doubt any of the reports of accelerating melt on Antarctica in recent days from Scientists (warming at three times the global average) it is a wake up call;………… no it is a wake up SHOUT when you take a Google Earth tour of the Antarctic coastline.

Antarctica 2

Antarctica 3

Antatctica 4 Pine Island Glacier

Posted: November 15th, 2009 under Climate Change, Foundation News, Nature, Tipping Points.
Tags: , , , , ,

This one is VERY self explanatory.

Posted via web from TweetingDonal's Temporary Insanities

MARC ROBERTS CARTOONS: Titanic

Marc's on a recycling kick right now, to our benefit... have a look at the throbgoblins site!

Posted via web from TweetingDonal's Temporary Insanities

Big freeze plunged Europe into ice age in months

ScienceDaily (Nov. 30, 2009) — In the film The Day After Tomorrow, the world enters the icy grip of a new glacial period within the space of just a few weeks. Now new research shows that this scenario may not be so far from the truth after all.

William Patterson, from the University of Saskatchewan in Canada, and his colleagues have shown that switching off the North Atlantic circulation can force the Northern hemisphere into a mini 'ice age' in a matter of months. Previous work has indicated that this process would take tens of years.

Around 12,800 years ago the northern hemisphere was hit by a mini ice-age, known by scientists as the Younger Dryas, and nicknamed the 'Big Freeze', which lasted around 1300 years. Geological evidence shows that the Big Freeze was brought about by a sudden influx of freshwater, when the glacial Lake Agassiz in North America burst its banks and poured into the North Atlantic and Arctic Oceans. This vast pulse, a greater volume than all of North America's Great Lakes combined, diluted the North Atlantic conveyor belt and brought it to a halt.

Without the warming influence of this ocean circulation temperatures across the Northern hemisphere plummeted, ice sheets grew and human civilisation fell apart.

Previous evidence from Greenland ice cores has indicated that this sudden change in climate occurred over the space of a decade or so. Now new data shows that the change was amazingly abrupt, taking place over the course of a few months, or a year or two at most.

Patterson and his colleagues have created the highest resolution record of the 'Big Freeze' event to date, from a mud core taken from an ancient lake, Lough Monreach, in Ireland. Using a scalpel layers were sliced from the core, just 0.5mm thick, representing a time period of one to three months.

Carbon isotopes in each slice reveal how productive the lake was, while oxygen isotopes give a picture of temperature and rainfall. At the start of the 'Big Freeze' their new record shows that temperatures plummeted and lake productivity stopped over the course of just a few years. "It would be like taking Ireland today and moving it up to Svalbard, creating icy conditions in a very short period of time," says Patterson, who presented the findings at...

Posted via web from TweetingDonal's Temporary Insanities