San Diego big business and the city whistle past the greenhouse-gas graveyard

And then there is drought

Data from the San Diego Foundation’s “San Diego’s Changing Climate: A Regional Wake-Up Call”
  • Data from the San Diego Foundation’s “San Diego’s Changing Climate: A Regional Wake-Up Call”

The data are in: climate change is real, and greenhouse gas emissions are greatly to blame. Global warming does not necessarily cause destructive disasters but definitely intensifies them.

The East Coast seems more vulnerable than the West, but San Diegans can’t gloat. In the past five years, several studies have predicted the devastation Southern California could suffer as a result of climate change.

One study, by Dan Cayan of the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, predicts that summer temperatures will increase sharply and “have severe impacts upon our public health and our supply of water and energy.” If greenhouse gas emissions continue to be high, by century’s end, heat-wave days “could increase by fourfold or more.” The sea level will rise, eroding coastal structures, shrinking beaches, and increasing “the chances of salt water intruding into our fresh water systems.” Severe flooding is possible.

And then there is drought. “Southern California has some of the riskiest wildfire conditions in the United States,” writes Cayan. “As climate changes, it appears that summer dryness will begin earlier, last longer and become more intense.” Multiple infernos could result.

Another study by the San Diego Foundation is titled “San Diego’s Changing Climate: A Regional Wake-Up Call.” The study starts out, “In 2050, if current trends continue, San Diego’s climate will be hotter and drier. Sea level will be 12–18 inches higher. We will face a severe water shortage. Wildfires will be more frequent and intense. Public health will be at risk, especially among our elderly and children. Native plant and animal species will be lost forever. We will not be able to meet our energy needs.”

There are a number of specific recommendations: reduce automobile usage; boost transit; make communities more compact and walkable; consider relocating threatened structures; stress water technologies such as recycling and desalination; scale back water usage; consider prohibiting development in fire-prone and certain coastal areas; and tighten building codes to mandate fire-resistant building design and materials.

The study warns that even if worldwide greenhouse gas emissions are reduced, “further warming is unavoidable as a result of past emissions that have built up in the atmosphere.”

This year, the City put out its draft study, “Climate Mitigation and Adaptation Plan,” or CMAP. It sounds some of the same alarms — but softly. San Diego’s most pressing question is whether the business establishment is capable of implementing changes that can negatively affect its pocketbook. After several delays, the plan is expected to come before the council in early 2013.

Emily Young

Emily Young

Although mayor-elect Bob Filner is more attuned to climate change than recent predecessors, many San Diegans worry that significant changes may not take place until nature mandates them. A group called SanDiego350.org is battling for more aggressive climate-change moves. “[The City’s plan] is not strong enough, does not meet its goals,” says Emily Wier, spokesperson for SanDiego350. “We are nowhere near on track for 2035 and 2050 goals. CMAP takes the low-hanging fruit — increasing bike lanes, encouraging people to carpool, the City purchasing more electric vehicles. But it does nothing to reduce our use of fossil fuels.”

One example: “It should be a no-brainer that all new buildings and existing buildings have solar panels on them,” says Wier.

Bill Powers of Powers Engineering agrees. His name is listed among those contributing to the City’s report, but he wants his name removed. “The plan is weak,” he says. “We have to really start rolling on solar on rooftops, but I have been hitting a brick wall.” The City’s plan uses obsolete statistics that inhibit the advance of solar power in a metro area with abundant sunshine. “I see the heavy presence of San Diego Gas & Electric saying, ‘We don’t want a serious impact on our business.’” (Sempra Energy, San Diego Gas & Electric’s parent, has among the highest profits of American utilities, and the local rates are among the nation’s steepest.)

The City’s plan has “incredibly modest targets” for smart-grid and renewable-energy technologies, says Powers.

The San Diego Association of Governments has been reporting on climate change, too. But at the same time, it has been hatching and effectuating plans for massive expansions of freeways. “SANDAG is a catastrophe as far as global warming is concerned,” says Jim Mills, former president pro tem of the California State Senate. The association of governments is bowing to “developers who want sprawl. Freeways do not solve traffic-congestion problems, they generate them” because distant housing developments spring up. “Expanding those freeways will cause more destruction than the Luftwaffe did on English cities in World War II.”

Conservation-minded groups have filed suit against the association, blasting the “automobile-oriented approach to transportation planning” in its 2050 Regional Transportation Plan. Smart growth will be the loser under the association, says the suit, which is scheduled to be decided November 30. “SANDAG proposes a ‘freeway-first’ system,” in which transit planning is wholly inadequate, says Duncan McFetridge, who has been pushing the suit.

Nicola Hedge

Nicola Hedge

The San Diego Foundation points to studies showing that an overwhelming majority of San Diegans wants movement on climate change, says Nicola Hedge, manager of the climate initiative. This suggests people are not questioning the science, she says. She believes the business community will line up behind the efforts, pointing to “the robust clean-tech sector in the region.”

“The good news is that all the cities and the county are developing greenhouse gas inventories,” says Emily Young, director of environment analysis and strategy at the foundation. “We haven’t gotten that far down the road with the development community, but more developers are looking at opportunities to develop existing areas to help reduce the urban footprint.”

But skepticism abounds. Norma Damashek, former president of the San Diego League of Women Voters, says San Diego has great scientific institutions doing pioneering research on the topic, “but they are not taking leadership in the City.” The scientific community must get aggressive in league with political leaders, she says. “This is a national issue that could put us on the map.” ■

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So, in other words, we've got the brains in our universities to identify the problem and make recommendations, but we don't have the smarts in City Hall to do anything with that knowledge?

JavaJoe: Yes, City Hall does not have the smarts. But that is only part of the story. No doubt you have noticed that whenever a citizen task force or committee is named, it consists of downtown lawyers, lobbyists, and top executives of local companies. You know what is going to be recommended before the first meeting is ever held. There are endless "conferences" on the topic, and studies by consultants who are paid to provide the recommendations desired by the task forces paying the consultants' bills, and the results are inevitably foreordained because the same group of downtown overlords is named to every committee. So the public's money keeps flowing into corporate welfare. Filner promises to change that. If he succeeds, things will change for the better in a hurry. Best, Don Bauder

City hall will get involved once they are presented with a plan that will make them and their cronies a profit.

murphyjunk: But how will the downtown overlords make a profit on global warming, other than financing emerging green industries? Best, Don Bauder

Excellent warning Don, it's now up to our political and academic institutions to protect future generations from unlivable drought, hurricane and other climate changes that are already out of control in 2012.

We must inform and incite the public to demand that federal, state and local politicians and academics work together like we did in WWII with the Manhattan Project. So far Washington has totally failed to take actions to protect America from global warming, and congress is not allowing open discussions between politicians (especially those beholden to special interests) and voters at all.

Unfortunately, scholars with the information we need to protect our civilization don’t exchange communications with the public either, they are isolated from us in their Ivory Towers. UC is great at giving information to students to memorize, but UC is a total failure at teaching students how to use that information. Ike warned us that the power of money dominates scholars and that culture must end now. Cal just spent $321 million on a football field and this week gave their new Chancellor (who is not from California because they couldn't find anyone in California qualified to do the job) a $50,000 raise making voters for Prop. 30 look like fools.

Thankfully, Obama and our younger generations proved that the new age of social media is capable of taking power away from politicians who think more about the power of money than We The People.

It's time for the younger generations to use their new powers again by demanding that politicians and academics save our future from unacceptable climate changes, or replace them immediately.

Anon: Good analysis. When a company the size of Exxon declares it does not believe in climate change, you realize what we are up against, considering all the money Exxon lobbyists pass around Washington. I agree with you and with Norma Damashek that our universities have the intellectual heft to analyze the problem, but don't use their influence to achieve societal objectives. Why? Because university administrators are kowtowing to the business communities; mustn't ruffle any feathers of a company that gives money to the university. Best, Don Bauder

Absolutely correct Don, and a worst case scenario is that Stephen Chu (Nobel Laureate, Cal professor and former head of LBNL that was supposed to build hybrid nuclear fusion plants to protect us from global warming) made a contract to let BP fund and control some of their research before he was appointed SecEnergy.

Even worse, for 4 years as SecEnergy, Chu has not provided any leadership at all to stop the accelerating CO2 emissions that are accelerating climate changes that are already totally unacceptable in 2012 (arctic melting, midwest drought, east coast hurricane damages, failing water supplies for California in addition to increasing sea level rise and firestorm threats in San Diego, etc.).

So academics share one dominant cultural value with politicians, total subservience to The Power of Money.

Anon: I am aware of the Chu story but haven't studied it. One problem he may have is that bureaucrats above him make the bad decisions. He may be fighting in vain. Again, however, I don't know enough to make a definitive statement on that. Best, Don Bauder

There is absolutely no excuse for Chu's failures, he has as much power, privilege and fame as any scientist in the world today. He has failed to be the leader that science and humanity need to protect quality of life for future generations.

Charles Keeling had to fight as hard as any academic in history to produce his famous CO2 Keeling Curve in spite of the powers that be who had "other priorities" and were always trying to shut him down and steal his funding. Keeling's courage and integrity, and that of some of his colleagues were all that allowed him to produce some of the most important research in the history of our civilization. No other scientist comes close to Charles Keeling when it comes to fighting for quality of life for future generations.

Unfortunately Chu is no Charles Keeling, so our youngest and future generations shall suffer increasingly unacceptable quality of life because of that.

Anon: You have my agreement on Keeling's achievements. Best, Don Bauder

Why must your arguments always start with deliberately contrived false positions? Here, let me clue you in on how obviously wrong you are:


Exxon site talking about what they're doing to deal with what you and others claim they don't believe in: CLIMATE CHANGE.


Funny how, like you, they insist EXXON is NOT "playing ball" on "climate change" even as they announce they're putting a high stakes bet on it!

Don, if you wouldn't take obviously fraudulent positions we might be able to have a discussion on the merits. But when you prove we can't even start from a position of honesty, we're wasting our time.

Bob: I will be happy to take a mea culpa on my statement on Exxon but what you present here is not terribly persuasive. The article by Christopher Jones suggests Exxon is hedging its bets or perhaps talking out of both sides of its mouth. I am a shareholder in Exxon and for a long time complained that it was spending money inveighing against climate change. From what you present here, I am not sure that it has changed its position completely. If it has, I will apologize. I have to study its current position. Best, Don Bauder

BOB: NO MEA CULPA FROM ME. I have done some more research on Exxon and the topic of climate change. Neither you nor Exxon are getting an apology for what I wrote. Sorry. On June 27 of this year, the CEO of Exxon said fears of climate change are overblown and shifting weather patterns and rising sea levels should be considered an engineering problem. Exxon has been accused by such prestigious scientific groups as the Royal Society of giving money to groups to try to stir up skepticism of global warming and funding organizations critical of the Kyoto Protocol. A recent study concluded that last year, 9 of 10 of climate scientists who denied climate change had ties to Exxon. In Exxon's favor, about five years ago it cut back on funding some of the anti-climate change organizations. In 2007, the CEO acknowledged that the planet is warming while carbon dioxide is increasing but he defended the oil industry. It appears to me that Exxon is straddling the fence on this one -- making ambiguous statements acknowledging global warming with one hand and feeding skepticism of global warming with the other hand. According to my sources, Exxon is spending comparatively less on innovating climate change solutions than other oil companies. I am open to argument on these points. Best, Don Bauder

You're being dishonest. It is not "skepticism of global warming" that Exxon is against, rather it is alarmism based on the obviously false claim that human activities have usurped the much more significant natural forces that drive climate change. I get a chuckle every time you talk about stopping climate change - good luck with that!

Here's a link to Judge Taylor's tentative decision in advance of tomorrow's court hearing, indicating that SANDAG failed to properly consider climate impacts with its approved regional transportation plan: twitdoc.com/1LWZ

For more on a transit-first approach to regional planning: www.transitsandiego.org.

Thanks for this great article, Don!

sara: Yes, the tentative decision is a very important step and would appear to be a victory for the good folks, for once. Best, Don Bauder

I guess you and those filing this suit still don't understand that the more bus, light rail and other mass transit that you create to run around almost empty will by definition create much more CO2 than it eliminates. How subsidizing more white elephant mass transit will help slay your imaginary doomsday climate change monster has yet to be revealed. I guess you could use government to force us to make transportation choices you probably don't even utilize, or if you do, more power to you, let us make up our own minds.

Bob: The people who believe as you do certainly state your position strongly.There might be a lot of good information from the court case we are discussing. There is a lot of scientific information out there. Best, Don Bauder

Apparently the scientists who produced the initial draft of the IPCC's AR5 agree with me too. The leaked draft suggests, among other things, that cosmic rays are a more significant factor in climate than anthropogenic CO2, that even the best case scenarios predicted by the IPCC and their climate models were wildly pessimistic, that CO2 does not have anything like the influence those who practice Catastrophic Anthropogenic Climate Change Alarmism have claimed, that there is no indication that human activities have any measurable effect on natural disasters, the list goes on and on. No doubt the reason the IPCC is hopping mad over this early release is their admission it will "interfere" with the review process - which is the politicians taking what the REAL scientists tell them and turning it into the exact opposite, the same nonsense they've released in the past.

The bottom line is this: Climate change happens. It's inevitable, unstoppable. Those who think we can go back to the stone age (funny, none of them actually will do that, they just want everyone else to do it) and save the planet are hypocrites and they're dangerously wrong.

The most liberal people I know right now like to take carbon-intensive trips all over the world to go look at flowers and plants so they can come back and brag about what they've done that you haven't. They don't contribute anything to society or the world, they just satisfy their own self-absorbed desires to one-up everyone else. And let's not even start to talk about all the carbon-intensive meetings the IPCC keeps hosting all over the world, all at OUR EXPENSE, mind you. If they were serious about carbon footprints, would they behave this way?

I don't think mass transit has proven to be effective. I think there is a flaw in the reasoning of pro-environmental folks. The flaw is ignoring practical concerns like time. Most people won't use public transit because automobiles save time - seems pretty obvious to me. So rather than spending money building highway lanes which will relieve trafffic - which will allow automobiles to save gas - we continue to invest heavily in mass transit.

Don, by coincidence, the LATimes had an article on this subject yesterday:

EPA bans BP from new federal contracts - The Obama administration cites the oil giant's 'lack of business integrity' in the 2010 Gulf of Mexico disaster.


To which I add a historical reference:

Big Oil buys Berkeley - The BP-UC Berkeley research deal pushes academic integrity aside for profit.


Anon: You can find stomach-turning examples like these all the time. Best, Don Bauder

Note that Chu was responsible for the Berkeley sellout to BP, no wonder he failed at LBNL and he is still selling out our future quality of life as SecEnergy.

Chu is a worst case consequence of our failure to heed Ike's "Power of Money" warning.

Don, the bottom line is that we need another Rachel Carson class leader, spokesperson, scientist and writer to represent and lead the international environmental movement to control global warming today, to make the right things happen with the overwhelming sense of urgency we are experiencing today.

Do you know of any such person?

Anon: Give me some time to think of a scientist/author/activist who can influence society as Rachel Carson did. Best, Don Bauder

Well I know pretty much EVERYTHING Rachel Carson ever predicted turned out to be NOT TRUE. Her work against pesticides led to many deaths around the world. And if you'd stop devouring and regurgitating propaganda for just a moment and start looking at what geology and other real sciences can teach us you would know the warm, wet times are the times that the biosphere, and human civilization, thrives. The cold, dry times are the times of the great extinction events. Global warming is actually good - who would have guessed? Too bad there's been no statistically significant warming for the past 16 years.


Now watch you attack the messengers and ignore the message, which you know is true - you can't refute.

Bob: Sorry. I think Rachel Carson was a pioneer who influenced society greatly, and positively. And I do believe that climate change is real, and caused in part by human activity that can be modified. Best, Don Bauder

Climate change is real, obviously. You keep trying to establish the false proposition that I and others "deny" climate change is real. Why?

As for the causes of climate change, I suggest you and others who feel humans have usurped the natural forces that drive it need to seriously stop listening to people like Al Gore, who is laughing all the way to the bank.

I am stunned that a man of Mr. Bauder's smarts would buy into that scam known as 'global warming,' which exists only in computer models. It's all about implementing the UN's 'Agenda 21,' the purpose of which is to deindustrialize the developed world and drive us all into poverty.

starsovan: I have received several private calls and emails stating the view that climate change does not exist, or is a hoax. However, yours is the first communication asserting that climate change is part of a United Nations conspiracy to deindustrialize the world and drive us all into poverty. I do not understand why the nations belonging to the U.N. and their representatives in that body would want to drive the developed world into poverty. In fact, the idea sounds preposterous to me, but you are certainly entitled to express your opinion on this blog. I would welcome your expatiation on this theory. Best, Don Bauder

Don, the reality is that it will take a new version of Manhattan Project to end global warming's accelerating climate change threats to our future.

Even though we experienced extraordinary droughts, hurricanes, quality water and food supply declines, etc. in 2012 there are too many special interests and their indentured politicians that are capable of producing propaganda to fool far too many voters.

Right now the entire world is in the watch helplessly and do nothing mindset, hoping it will go away.

Again, what we need is an internationally recognized and respected spokesperson to lead a worldwide environmental movement and there are none in sight, most sadly not even from universities like UC that like to call themselves "preeminent" but don't have a clue on how to make the right things happen or they would have acted decisively by now, especially with the Keeling Curve's continuing escalation with increasingly unacceptable consequences.

Keep up the good fight Don, the READER has the most important audience there is, our younger generations who made a positive difference in the results of the 2012 elections. They will have to deal with our continuing failures to do the right things for their long-term future quality of life.

"what we need is an internationally recognized and respected spokesperson to lead a worldwide environmental movement"

What happened to Al Gore? Oh that's right, he lost all credibility when it was revealed he stood to make gazillions with his carbon-trading scheme. Picked from the pockets of the little people, of course.

starvosan: If Gore had made a gazillion with his carbon trading scheme, he would have had no place to spend it, because, according to you, the industrialized nations would have been driven into penury. Best, Don Bauder

Anon: The Manhattan Project really faced no organized opposition -- no big bucks trying to block it. But that's not true of climate change. Best, Don Bauder

You really believe it is possible to "end global warming"? You really think it is a good idea to plunge us headlong into the next ice age?

Listen, the geological record proves the long term trend on Earth has been, and likely will continue to be cooling. Think about the fact that the Earth at one time was a molten ball of rock were no free water could exist without being vaporized and only over a long period of time was the world we know today able to form. Further, the primary climate feature of the Earth is long periods of intense cold during which all life on Earth struggles and much of it dies. Mass extinctions aren't caused by WARMING (except in the case of a giant impact, and even then only locally - a giant impact's main and long term effect is apparently also COOLING) but rather by COOLING. Look into it - the times of mass extinctions tend to correlate with periods of intense global COOLING, not warming.

The warm, wet times of higher atmospheric CO2 were the times life THRIVED! Where do you think all that fossil fuel came from in the first place?

"I do not understand why the nations ... would want to drive the developed world into poverty."

Because the poor are too weak and ignorant to understand the forces arrayed against them, much less fight them off. Once an educated middle class disappears, then the global population reduction agenda can begin.

It is telling that the graphs at the top of the page deal with projections into the future. Why don't they just point out the global warming that has occurred in the last 40 years? Because there hasn't been any statistically significant change, that's why. Any REAL scientist would never claim he has a crystal ball to see into the future like the warm-istas do.

starvosan: I think you will find that most scientists who have studied the question, such as climatologists, accept climate change. Incidentally, the global average surface temperature has risen in the past century, particularly in the last 30 years. Best, Don Bauder

A wise man once said "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his paycheck depends on him not understanding it."

And I'll bet most of those climate 'experts' are on the gub'mint payroll somewhere down the line.

"the global average surface temperature has risen..."

Climate always changes. The next 30 years could just as easily show a decline. That's why they switched from 'global warming' to 'climate change,' because then the warmistas no longer have to be embarrassed by cold spells.

When they started claiming that CO2 was a pollutant--that should have been the tipoff.

starvosan: Yes, it is difficult to get somebody to understand something when his paycheck depends on him not understanding it. Let me turn that aphorism on its head: the scientists who deny climate change are very often the ones who work for oil companies or companies that produce pollution often blamed for climate change. Best, Don Bauder

"Most scientists" is a political argument, not a scientific one. Plus that is incorrect, as a visit to http://www.petitionproject.org/ quickly reveals. Those same "climatologists" have been caught red handed faking data and though many have attempted to whitewash and cover it up, the fact remains that even the U.K. Met office now admits there's been no statistically significant warming in 16 years despite continuing steady miniscule increases in atmospheric CO2 year over year. As human CO2 use has fluctuated over the last 150 or so years the CO2 level has continued an essentially linear rise suggesting that the two are NOT related. Much of the surface temperature rise you cite was indeed man-made or should I say "MANN-MADE" as it was "scientists" like Mann who have continually adjusted the data to support their theories. That is not science, that is propaganda. But there's a bigger question I have not yet seen you or anyone address. Who, other than Al Gore, has any HARD evidence that current temperature and CO2 levels are optimum and that warming or higher CO2 is bad? If you bother to check, the current atmospheric CO2 levels are at relatively historic lows. If you bother to check the Earth tends to go through periods of intense cold that last a long time. The warming we are currently experiencing, that started around 15,000 years ago before humans had anything to do with it, is not a bad thing - it is a good thing! Warmer would not necessarily be worse and, as I pointed out in another post here, the conclusions that temperatures will go up uniformly are hasty and already proven false. Much of the alarmism stems from a period where several known REGIONAL climate cycles happened to all line up on the hot side of things and yes, we did have some unusually warm nights and mild winters then, but we do not have the sustained high temperatures alarmists keep saying will be here soon - and they've been issuing dire warnings about that for what, three if not four decades now? All the fuss about two storms, Katrina and Sandy, when in fact the measure of tropical storm intensity, the Accumulated Cyclone Energy Index, shows there is no major uptrend in tropical storms as claimed. Go ahead - tell me what claim of the alarmists you still believe and I'll present HARD DATA that refutes it.

Very well stated! I suspect, though, the comments aren't. Haven't read them yet, just guessing!

Bob: We've had some interesting comments, yea and nay, on this column. Suggest you read the comments. Best, Don Bauder

Sort of blows your belief in his smarts... Funny how Obama and the Democrats are part of that U.N. effort to drive everyone DOWN to the same level, yet people still vote for them. Low information voting sure did surge this time around!

Bob: Sorry, I do not believe there is a U.N. or Obama effort to drive everyone down to the same level. Economists left, right, and center would scoff at that idea. Best, Don Bauder

Obama repeatedly states that his plan is to essentially tax the rich until there are no rich no more. He has been preaching "wealth redistribution" since before he was ever first elected to public office. Obama rolled back welfare reforms made under Clinton which made that system a hand up, not a hand out. This is a tried and true way to buy votes but it is disastrous in the long run. The more people who board the gravy train the less there are to propel it and, eventually, it grinds to a halt. But we're a bit off topic now and it's part my fault so perhaps we should meander back to the issues of your story.

Bob: Obama has never said or implied that he would tax the rich out of existence. He just wants to restore the tax rates that the upper 2% had under President Clinton. In my opinion, that won't be sufficient. I believe that the distribution of both wealth and income in the United States is more unbalanced -- and unhealthy -- than it was in robber baron days. We are in grave danger because of this imbalance. There must be wealth and income redistribution. Consumption is 71% of GDP and the middle class is sinking. Our own economic health depends on wealth and income redistribution that can be accomplished through a more progressive tax code. Face facts: taxes were cut too steeply in the Reagan years. Supply side economics did NOT work. We must restore sanity. Best, Don Bauder

And yet it's happening right before our eyes. Go figure.

Tax the rich, feed the poor, until there are no rich no more.

It is one of Obama's fairly clearly stated goals, just in different words.

Mr. Bauder claims ignorance of 'Agenda 21' or at least everything it entails.

Don't forget the Jesuits!

from http://s1.zetaboards.com/LooseChangeForums/topic/709947/1/

" Here are some facts about Columbine from researcher Starviego/Starvosan:

And of course, at the time of the massacre, the CIA director (George Tenet) was a Jesuit-trained Knight of Malta and the FBI director was Louis Freeh, a devout Roman Catholic, an alleged member of Opus Dei who sent his son to an Opus Dei school. The President at the time, Bill Clinton, was Jesuit-trained at Georgetown University. Clinton, his wife, and his Vice President Al Gore all had Chiefs of Staff. All of those Chiefs of Staff were Jesuit-trained at Georgetown University. So, Columbine happened under a Jesuit-controlled regime, and the key agencies involved (CIA & FBI) were directed by Vatican-connected individuals when the attack took place. In addition, we cannot deny that the military would be involved in such an operation. Well, when you look at all the military people who are Jesuit-trained, it's clear that the US military is run by the Jesuit Order. "

Duhbya: Bill Clinton must have been absent for the classes on chastity run by the Jesuits. Best, Don Bauder

Or perhaps he subconsciously added a consonant to the name of their order, and read it as "Jesduit".

Duhbya: You have a wit I strive vainly to emulate. Great line! Best, Don Bauder

Yeah, drove the Jesuits nuts. Much of it could be considered a reach, though. High praise, coming from you. Thanks.

I think this is one issue for which most of the public dialogue is dominated by far extremists on both sides of the issue - and that is preventing solutions.

On the right you have guys that deny that there is any evidence of global climate change - despite clear CO2 increases.

On the left you have people who continue to push hard (and get) expensive programs that sound enviromentally nice but don't work in practice (e.g. insisting car-pool lanes must be put everywhere at all times regardless of effectiveness, see http://paleale.eecs.berkeley.edu/~varaiya/papers_ps.dir/TRC_342.pdf ).

Realistically there is a tradeoff between long-term effects of climate change, which could potentially be devastating vs. the economic costs and effectiveness of various environmental programs. I would like to see more pragmatic compromises between economic and enviromental sides of the equation. I don't think these tradeoffs are acknowledged and analyzed properly - instead everyone wants to sell things with the usual "win-win" Bullsh. I can't believe, for example, that the $68B+ CA high-speed rail would possibly be considered a good tradeoff - it's FAR too expensive for the benefit it might provide. In contrast, pushing for more environmental building standards, tighter CAFE fuel standards, those squigly light bulbs, LEDs, alternative electricity sources - these all seem like good ideas that have worked.

But I don't really see much cost-effectiveness dialogue in the public discussion because you can't get much compromise between extremists.

ImJustABill: You make a good point: environmental programs should be cost-effective. Extremists on both sides should be willing to compromise. It seems to me we see much of this inability to reach consensus in a lot of public dialogue today. One such dialogue dominates today's headlines. Best, Don Bauder

Coincidence does not prove causation. Nobody's denying climate change, that's a straw man that only people with no valid arguments use. Here, want to borrow my mirror so you can see what I'm saying? Nobody's denying CO2 is increasing. However, a mechanism that explains that, along with a slight move towards NEUTRAL (of course alarmists talk of a dangerous acidification when it is no such thing) of the ocean surface waters is known and gee, it's all natural! A naturally warming planet with naturally upwelling cold, carbon rich waters tends to see some of that carbon go into the atmosphere and some go towards a slight decrease in ocean surface water pH.

We cannot stop climate change. It is real and it is a constant. Constantly changing, that is. Beyond our ability to alter in any significant way, whether due to economics if you must believe only that or the more realistic view that it is driven by natural forces which are demonstrably orders of magnitude greater than anything we can do.

Anyone bother to estimate how much CO2 insects produce annually?

You should.

Meanwhile, see my other posts. Turns out global warming is actually good, if you bother to ask NASA or check the geologic record.

And don't forget all the CO2 released in volcanic eruptions every year. I've heard that the eruption of Mt. St. Helens by itself released more CO2 into the atmosphere than all man-made carbon emissions since the dawn of recorded history.

starvosan: How about all that hot air generated in Congress? Is that a contributor? Best, Don Bauder

Bob: Has anybody done a study on that? Best, Don Bauder

Scientists, at least some of them, tend to discount the CO2 that is released. However, I am not convinced they are properly monitoring, estimating or even aware of all the carbon that is input into the carbon cycle at even those places on land where this happens 24/7/365, much less the places under the sea where it happens all the time as well. We are still learning a lot about this planet - I think the most important lesson is we know a lot less than some so-called "experts" claim.

Bob: I think genuine experts would state that we know less than we should. That's true of every discipline. Best, Don Bauder

Bob: I understand cows contribute to climate change, too. Best, Don Bauder

If you really want to believe that, I suppose anything that emits CO2 "contributes to climate change", but only if you fall for the belief that the atmospheric CO2 level is driving atmospheric temperature levels. I invite you to head on out to Anza-Borrego any clear night and you will find out quickly how false the idea CO2 is forming some sort of "blanket" or "barrier" really is. You do know that daily temperature fluctuations all over the world more or less destroy that myth, don't you? Plus, again, we've already had demonstrated for us we cannot trust those who have taken over control of temperature records. They keep adjusting them to fit their theories - as I said in another post yes, in that respect global warming/climate change is indeed "MAN MADE". When you falsify (or adjust, if you insist on not accepting it's done deliberately to support a philosophy, not scientifically) temperature records to fit your political and social goals that is not climate change - it's fraud.

Bob: Sorry, I do not believe that the people who come up with climate data are altering the figures because they have their own agendas. I have never seen any proof of that. Best, Don Bauder

Believe it or not. It's been proven, more than once, they even admitted it in their e-mails. To see the proof you have to be willing to look at it - it is there.

Remember Jones and his famous "hide the decline" remark?


Also, if you bother to take a look at which temperature stations were eliminated and which were kept, as well as which are not even sited properly:


In terms of global temperatures and climate - of course throughout the lifetime of the Earth they have varied quite a bit - long before man was around. But the CO2 levels and ocean water pH levels show a strong spike up at about the time of the industrial revolution to now. That's a pretty big coicidence I would think.

Actually no, that's not true. You've been taken in by people who used deliberately deceptive choices of scale in their graphs to make it appear that way, but in fact the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere has gone from almost nothing to nearly nothing. Do the math yourself, stop just believing what you are spoon fed. Do you know what fraction 280 ppm represents? What fraction 390 ppm represents? If you bother to check, the increase in CO2 in the atmosphere has been rather linear despite wild fluctuations in the production of human CO2 byproducts. We had a major increase in human CO2 production around WWII yet the atmospheric levels increased at roughly the same rate as always. Similar human changes in production are NOT reflected in atmospheric rates. Plus humans are a bit player in the carbon cycle - the data is there, look for it, stop being spoon fed your faulty "facts". Finally, there is a perfectly understandable mechanism for what we're seeing - carbon is stored in the sea, among other things, and it is likely we're seeing a natural, normal result of a natural, normal warming cycle. As cold, deep, carbon rich waters well up to the surface, known chemical reactions cause some of that carbon to come out of solution and go to the atmosphere. The rest causes a slight change in the pH of surface waters. There is no "strong spike" as you suggest. And you're forgetting one thing. Earth's natural tendency is to lose heat and in fact the warmer something becomes in relation to it's surroundings (in this case Earth related to space), the more efficient a radiator that warm thing becomes. The thing we have to fear is not a warmer Earth - geology and other sciences show that the Earth, the biosphere, and human civilization THRIVE during the warm times. It's when the Earth cools, when the ice ages come, that we suffer and die. Go read the leaked IPCC AR5 draft and see if maybe it tends to destroy your carefully contrived convictions.

Oh and here's my big environmental suggestion to the US government which I haven't seen made before - but that I think is a big root cause of high energy use in the USA.


End the mortgage interest deduction. End (or greatly scale back) Fannie Mae, Freddie MAC, FHA, CRA.

We have relatively huge houses in the US - at relatively far distances from our jobs. This means more energy use for heating, cooling, and transportation. Many people would say more government is the solution - urban revitalization programs, etc. I would say less goverment is the solution - roll back all the government programs that encourage people to buy big houses.

ImJustABill: Good idea: down with the McMansions. Instead of having tax policies encouraging them, we should have tax policies discouraging them. Best, Don Bauder

This article is full of the usual disinformation. Where to begin? 1st, the measured "global warming" was mostly milder winters, warmer nights, not higher daytime temperatures. There is ZERO data that suggests we're headed towards the temperature results given. 2nd, the wildfires we had were due in large part to the mistaken policy to prevent ALL fires as fire is a natural way the Earth keeps a balance. Preventing ALL fires allows fuel to build up to catastrophic levels and then when a fire does come through it burns so hot that the soil chemistry changes and instead of a natural cleansing affect you get disaster. Anthropogenic, yes, in part because no doubt greeniacs demand we don't do any proscribed burns to keep things reasonable, but it had NOTHING to do with climate change. 3rd, the opening sentence: Yes, climate change is real - it has been ever since Earth formed a fluid envelope. However, there is NO VALID EVIDENCE for a significant human contribution despite decades of trying to manufacture it. Now watch, I'll be called a "climate change denier" even though I just pointed out climate change is a constant we cannot hope to stop - we just have to ride it out. Indeed someone needs to write an HONEST, FACT BASED piece for the Reader on the truth about climate change. I would but I know I'd be wasting my time - they seem as caught up as many others in the nonsense that is Catastrophic Anthropogenic Climate Change Alarmism - just work out the acronym, it sums the matter up perfectly. What is certain is that pretty much for all my life people have been predicting doom and gloom and the fact is it never happens, it's ALWAYS nonsense. Please, Reader, stop printing nonsense propaganda. The U.K. Met already admitted there's been no statistically significant warming in 16 years despite ever increasing atmospheric CO2. Didn't you get the memo? Or the one from NASA? pHere, I'll CC you all!p

What do you know - turns out more CO2 is better... turns out global warming is GOOD for the biosphere. Who would have guessed? Anyone who studied history, paleontology or geology, that's who! Keep putting your faith in climate models which have only proved they are failures if you must, but stop expecting us to go along with it.

Bob: I do not believe the Reader has any position on climate change. Even if it did, I don't think the Reader would reject a story expressing a different point of view. I think a well-researched article on the topic, quoting local experts on both sides, would be a good candidate for a cover story. However, I must hasten to say that I have nothing to do with such decisions. I'm not in the management. Best, Don Bauder

I stand corrected - I hope, seeing what they've decided to publish on the topic in the past, they will be agreeable to running some stories that actually go into the real science behind climate change, the fact it is controlled by forces well beyond human control or influence, and the fact that despite several decades of alarmist rhetoric, NOTHING that the IPCC, Al Gore and the "Hockey Team" have warned us about is showing ANY SIGN of coming about. The only thing they DO have going for them is they keep fiddling with both the past hard data concerning temperature measurements, and in the case of JONES he actually destroyed the original data, plus they keep eliminating any stations that show cooling trends or help show that global temperatures are in fact NOT changing significantly. As for the sea levels, I was walking in Torrey Pines one day and some self-proclaimed expert was talking about how devastating sea level increases driven by anthropogenic climate change have been for San Diego. Since my family has been here for generations and there are plenty of old photos showing that in fact very little change in sea level has occurred, the coast is essentially where it has been for much of San Diego's recorded history with only normal, natural erosion changing things much, it was easy to see FROM HARD DATA AND ACTUAL FACTS, that the worries about forthcoming huge changes in sea level were just more nonsense. But here, if you're willing to stipulate that Scripps Institute of Oceanography does contain more than it's fair share of climate alarmists, why do you think they just spent millions to build a facility within a stone's throw of the mean high tide line on a bluff that certainly will be quickly eroded out from under it if their claims have any validity? Why, if Al Gore's fear of major sea level increases is true, did he buy a million dollar property on the shore? My perception is that people who share your views are generally convinced to do so by emotional arguments and, for some curious reason, are resistant and even immune to actual hard scientific data as well as common sense. I'm trying to express it as politely as I can so please don't take it the wrong way. But the simple fact is this isn't rocket science and the evidence is there - why can't you at least consider it? If we were really headed for those huge temperature increases the alarmists, and your article, says are coming, and indeed people like you have been saying were actually underway for the last three decades, why is it not happening? Why is it not here? Time has proven you wrong, yet you cling to a disproven set of beliefs. Why?

Bob: In re Al Gore's home: how long do you think he expects to live? Climate change is taking place over a long period of time. Best, Don Bauder

Oh, and by the way, if your own statement that, "Sempra Energy, San Diego Gas & Electric’s parent, has among the highest profits of American utilities, and the local rates are among the nation’s steepest." isn't a clear indication of the FAILURE of government involvement in energy, I don't know what is. CA is one of the most regulated, taxed energy markets on the planet, isn't it? And there's your result. A better argument for abolishing government meddling I don't know, other than the rest of your article perhaps!

Bob: Sempra's high profits and SDGE's high rates are not arguments for abolishing government regulation. They are arguments for REFORMING government regulation. Best, Don Bauder

As I pointed out, the regulation we have, some of the strictest in the world, has allowed a situation where you claim it is not working so we need more. I know that's not the words you used and you will probably argue that is not what you said and I concede no, not in those words, but that is the gist of your position. Despite being one of the most regulated industries/companies in the world, Sempra is an evil corporation that is destroying the world by giving us what we demand and so the answer is more regulation that isn't working anyway?

Guess again please.

Your position is based on the canard that profits are evil. That it is wrong to make a profit. That's Obama-speak. It's getting tiresome.

Bob: Regulation does not work well. Read the past articles I have written on the SEC's corruption, for example. However, LACK of regulation is even worse. This was proven decisively by deregulation of Wall Street during the Clinton years, and the resultant calamity that began in 2008, and, quite possibly, is not over. Best, Don Bauder

I'm curious - is there ANYONE who reads this article or the comments who really believes it is possible to actually take the temperature of the Earth not just once but repeatedly in such a way that they can actually claim, with any reliability, that the Earth has warmed a degree or two over 100 years?

Do you really believe that, using thermometers, that is possible? I'm not talking about satellite measurements, as I suppose you know they cannot do surface temperature measurements.

Bob: Taking the earth's temperature with a thermometer? My only response is to play a variation on an old theme: If somebody took Mother Earth's temperature rectally, the thermometer would be stuck in....name your city: St. Louis? Bakersfield? Kansas City? Cleveland? Detroit? Youngstown? Scranton? Best, Don Bauder

Don, too bad no one from UC joins in on this, but UC scholars spend too much in their Ivory Towers and hardly any time communicating facts that the public needs to know to make the right decisions to save the planet for human habitation beyond this century. In the meantime, right wing propagandists have their own way with the facts no matter how fallacious their mendacities.

Anon: Good points. Academic scholars should take leadership roles in communities on such matters as climate change. My guess is that the university administrations, afraid to upset local companies that provide money, pressure the scientists to shut up. Best, Don Bauder

Fortunately, despite their efforts to keep the facts from the public, the IPCC AR5 draft was just released. You'll be pleased to hear it confirms there is no valid basis for claiming that the Earth's ability to support human or other life is not and has never been seriously threatened by human activities. Fallacious mendacities? Oh, you're talking about the past IPCC reports, the ones the public actually saw, which were significantly edited to completely reverse the facts originally provided by science. This time that's going to be hard to do, what with this draft made public. And UC Scholars? You mean like Naomi Oreskes, who cherry picked her search terms until she got the result she wanted? That's not science, that's propaganda.

Duhbya: There is a song that has the line..."or run a ranch in Butte." I'll let you figure out what song it is. Best, don Bauder

Well, I'm stumped, although, having lived in Northern Nevada for 7 years, I'm surmising it might have something to do with a ranch similar to the Mustang?

Duhbya: It has to do with the keyboard music played in establishments such as Mustang. Best, Don Bauder

Hmm....must be from some horse opera.

Duhbya: horse opera or whores opera? Best, Don Bauder

With complimentary hors d'oeuvres? Good one, Mr. B!

Like Bob Roberts, I challenge the intrinsic assumption that public transit is good for the environment. I don't think favoring public transit over automobile transit is good for the economy OR the environment.

As described in http://www.freakonomics.com/2012/11/07/can-mass-transit-save-the-environment-right-wing-or-left-wing-heres-a-post-everybody-can-hate/

"Might studies that demonstrate transit is greener be similarly wrong?

They might. The reason is that many studies of energy efficiency by mode often make questionable and — depending on the author’s point of view — self-serving assumptions. The main trick is to look at autos with but one passenger and compare them to transit vehicles in which every seat is full."

"According to the Department of Energy’s Transportation Energy Data Book, in 2010 transporting each passenger one mile by car required 3447 BTUs of energy. Transporting each passenger a mile by bus required 4118 BTUs, surprisingly making bus transit less green by this metric"

ImJustABill: One problem I have with transit is the number of people I know who claim they are afraid to ride it. Best, Don Bauder

Yeah - safety and security are one issue - recent NY Post photographs probably don't help.

I think working within an automobile-dominated transportation system - tougher CAFE MPG standards, congestion pricing, etc. would be a more important priority than trying to get everyone to take public transit.

ImJustABill: Of course, auto transit is not safe either. Best, Don Bauder

This just in from Chicago:


Woman attacked by passenger wielding feces-filled sock on Chicago public transport.

At least his stocking wasn't full of coal...

Bob: I rode the Chicago El to and from work for five years without incident. This incident would disquiet anybody. Best, Don Bauder

The problem I have with public transportation is that whenever I do ride it, or happen to see a bus, trolley or coaster go by, I see how few are in the vehicles and, considering the amount of carbon produced mainly to move around empty mass transit vehicles, it's no wonder our air quality is not improving as we would hope. It would be good for the air here, and for climate change fantasies, if perhaps we curtailed the waste of energy and resources that is under utilized mass transit here in San Diego County - but don't let such facts interfere with your attempts to create utopia in your own image!

Public transportation/transit can be extremely dangerous, especially for those who are young, elderly or have limited mental capacities.

SP: What form of transportation is completely safe? Best, Don Bauder

Does anybody really think that the yakkity-yaks yakking about global warming are ever going to be found taking the public transit that they are advocating for everyone else? Ha! Their idea of going green is a Prius parked between their Cadillac SUVs.

starvosan: I can assure you that most of the people whose organizations were plaintiffs in the SANDAG case are not limousine liberals. Best, Don Bauder

And yet the number of "Obama" election stickers on SUVs and other high-dollar, high carbon vehicles never ceases to astound me. I thought they were all about taking public transport, yet they all seem to drive the biggest, most ostentatious, gas-guzzling vehicles available.


NASA satellite data from the years 2000 through 2011 show the Earth's atmosphere is allowing far more heat to be released into space than alarmist computer models have predicted, reports a new study in the peer-reviewed science journal Remote Sensing. http://news.yahoo.com/nasa-data-blow-gaping-hold-global-warming-alarmism-192334971.html


Geologist Dr. Don Easterbrook's warning came in the form of a new scientific paper he presented to the 4th International Conference on Climate Change in Chicago on May 16, 2010. Dr. Easterbrook is an Emeritus Professor at Western Washington University who has authored eight books and 150 journal publications. Easterbrook's full resume is here. Dr. Easterbrook joins many other scientists, peer-reviewed research and scientific societies warning of a coming global cooling. Easterbrook is presenting his findings alongside other man-made global warming skeptics at the three day conference in Chicago.


You may or may not remember the "climate change" everyone was concerned about in the 1970s was global cooling and a possible "snowball Earth". Of course, despite scientists (including James Hansen, no less) who were involved in that controversy, today it is claimed "no real scientist actually believed or advocated that" despite significant evidence to the contrary.

Now, however, there's no denying that some REAL SCIENTISTS are pointing out the fact that global warming is actually good - it's cooling we should be worried about and it is very possible cooling is what's coming next.

And if you are watching the scientific literate as I am, you will notice the alarmists are carefully positioning themselves to blame the coming cooling on anthropogenic fossil fuel use - watch, and when they do I'll remind you I told you so.

Bob: This controversy is similar to others in various scientific disciplines. Rarely do you see unanimity; you may even see some tobacco industry-paid doctors still claiming that smoking is not harmful to your health. Best, Don Bauder


I know, it's just weather, but so are the storms alarmists keep claiming are "proof" of anthropogenic warming. So are the heat waves. Funny cold events don't get the same play in the media. When the Arctic ice sheet hits a new low we can't stop hearing about it but when the Antarctic ice sheet hits a new high all you hear is crickets. Why is that?

Though as I mentioned in another forum you knew the fix was in when they stopped emphasizing "global warming" and instead started using the term "climate change". Will you try to tell me, a couple decades from now, that I'm silly to suggest that anyone was worried about "global warming"? That no serious scientists ever were behind that nonsense? You know, when the alarmists are talking about how our fossil fuel use is creating atmospheric aerosols and particles which are the cause of global cooling? That day is coming, you know, coming soon.

Actually this goes a bit beyond being "just a controversy", seeing as it's fairly obvious one side has been engaging in deliberate and systematic fraud from the start. I'm curious - what will it take for those who fell for this fraud to realize they've been had? How many years of complete FAILURE of the IPCC and alarmists' predictions to come true will it take? I know it's fashionable to compare this to the whole smoking thing but the only comparison was that, like the tobacco companies, the IPCC, Al Gore and so-called "climate scientists", aka "the hockey team" were clearly dishonest in every possible way.

If Al Gore really believed we're looking at catastrophic sea level increases as you must admit he's been claiming, why did he just by a multi-million dollar home just feet above the current mean high tide line? Does the fact he's secured his place among "the 1%" have any effect on your feelings about him?

Bob: You may disagree with those who believe climate change is caused, to a large degree, by humans. But I don't think you can accuse the believers of fraud. I don't believe they are raking in big bucks by stating their opinions. That even applies to Al Gore. Best, Don Bauder

Bob: If there was "deliberate and systematic fraud," what was the personal financial gain from it? Best, Don Bauder

viewer: I hardly think Jim Mills is a loser. He is an expert on transit, among many things. Best, Don Bauder

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