Scotland has approved 11 wind turbines in Aberdeen, which will supply have the town’s electricity. They are being touted as job-creators and engines of economic growth, and are locally popular. (Green energy has already created 11,000 jobs in Scotland and the country is rapidly increasing the amount of electricity it generates from renewables).
But Donald Trump, has plans for a golf course near Aberdeen and is threatening a law suit now that the project has been approved.
This was his address to the Scottish parliament on the subject last year:
The Donald’s complaint that wind turbines are a blight on the beauty of the land is silly. There is lots of land. And, the beauty of the land won’t remain anyway if it is turned to desert or ends up under the ocean. Scotland is doing its bit to avert the catastrophe of climate change caused by dumping carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.
Trump exemplifies the selfishness and childishness of the current American business class, too many members of which are unimaginative and scientifically illiterate. If they knew what was good for them they’d be lobbying for green energy.
Dreaming of playing golf where wind energy can be generated is the contemporary equivalent of Nero fiddling while Rome burned.
Middle East is getting drier because of climate change, impelling people to replace lost rain water with underground fossil or aquifer water that cannot be replaced. From 2003-2009, enough of this aquifer water was permanently drained off to meet the needs of 100 million people. Some Middle East specialists are afraid that wars over water are the next big thing in the region.
By analyzing the dramatic and sudden increase in water levels—or storm surges—which occur as a result of fierce hurricane winds and low central air pressure, researchers have found that even a 'statistically downcast' estimate of a 1.8°F increase in global average surface temperatures would result in a two-fold to seven-fold increase in the risk of these devastating events.
The latest climate projections, however, are far more dramatic with estimates falling between 3.2°F and 7.2°F for global temperature increase by 2100.
“Our study shows that extreme (storm) surges become more frequent in a warmer climate, and that the relative change in frequency is much more pronounced for the most extreme events,” said lead author Aslak Grinsted, a climate researcher at the University of Copenhagen.
"Storm surges," writesClimate Central's Andrew Freedman, "are hurricanes’ greatest killer, a point that was driven home again just last year, when Hurricane Sandy killed at least 72, mainly along the coast of New Jersey and New York."
Similarly, when Hurricane Katrina hit the gulf coast, water levels along some parts of the shoreline rose as high as 28 feet above the astronomical tide level, leveling entire communities and contributing to the death of more than 2,000 people.
“I think our study is important," said Grinstead, "because it says that coastal adaptation measures should include changes in surge statistics in addition to local sea level rise.”
Reasoning that tidal gauge records could be used to reveal the biggest storm surges, scientists from the University of Copenhagen, Beijing Normal University and NERC's National Oceanography Center (UK) analyzed data dating back to 1923 from six tidal gauges in the southeastern US coast—from Galveston, Texas to Atlantic City, New Jersey.
Factoring out other influences, such as sea level rise, the researchers determined that "the warming that took place during the 20th century has already led to a doubling of the risk of Katrina-magnitude storm surge events," Climate Central reports. Adding, "a warming of just 0.72°F could cut in half the return period of Katrina-magnitude surges, thereby making them a far more frequent occurrence."
Previous studies have suggested a link between warming temperatures and an increased risk of hurricanes but scientists have been reluctant to assume causality because they have been unable to isolate the trend from other competing factors – such as El Niño, tropical temperatures or droughts in the Sahel region of Africa.
"Scientists have been extremely careful about saying some event has a cause. But here, it's fair to say that warmer conditions make hurricanes more probable," Grinsted concluded.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 License
Documentary on what the 600 coal plants in the US are doing to our health and well-being. The government should announce a crash program to close them all by 2023 and replace them with green energy. If it won’t municipalities (your city) should go into the business of solar and wind electricity generation itself. The “cost” would be minor to the cost to our health and our planet (via global warming — it isn’t a distant threat–) that we will incur if we don’t.
Although the Gulf makes its way in life by selling petroleum, countries like Qatar and the United Arab Emirates don’t engage in that sordid game of the American rich, of climate-change denial. The emirs are in no doubt about its dangers to their region and the need to use their current wealth to move to renewables. Since green energy requires massive investment capital, and since these countries are very wealthy, they are, ironically, in a position to take the lead on green energy. And they have the will. Unlike big American energy corporations who pay weasels to deny the dangers of our rapidly altering climate.
the United Arab Emirates has launched the Middle East’s biggest concentrated solar power plant, with the help of Spain’s Abengoa and the French energy firm Total S.A. When fully operational, Shams-1 will generate 100 megawatts of electricity.
The project was inaugurated by UAE President, Shaikh Khalifa bin Zayed al-Nahyan. It is a project of Masdar, a green energy concern backed by the UAE government and headed by Sultan al-Jaber, whom I met in February when I was given a wonderful tour of Masdar City near Abu Dhabi by the very kind genius, Hector Hernandez. (See this press release).
“Encore: Ending the Silence on Climate Change
March 15, 2013
Remember climate change? The issue barely comes up with any substance in our current political dialogue. But bringing climate change back into our national conversation is as much a communications challenge as it is a scientific one.
This week, in an encore broadcast, scientist Anthony Leiserowitz, director of the Yale Project on Climate Change Communication, joins Bill to describe his efforts to galvanize communities over what’s arguably the greatest single threat facing humanity. Leiserowitz, who specializes in the psychology of risk perception, knows better than anyone if people are willing to change their behavior to make a difference.
“[A] pervasive sense up to now has been that climate change is distant — distant in time, and distant in space,” Leiserowitz tells Bill. “And what we’re now beginning to see is that it’s not so distant. I have a nine-year-old son — he’s going to be my age in the year 2050. I don’t want him to live in the world that we’re currently hurtling towards.”
The show also includes a short video portrait of photographic artist Chris Jordan, whose work helps us understand the scope of American consumerism and consumption.
Interview Producer: Candace White. Editor: Rob Kuhns. Associate Producer: Julia Conley.