"Virtually no Republican" in Washington accepts climate change science.

Discussion in 'Politics and the Topics of the day' started by thoughtone, May 19, 2014.

  1. thoughtone

    thoughtone BGOL Veteran Registered

    source: PolitiFact

    [​IMG] "Virtually no Republican" in Washington accepts climate change science.

    Jerry Brown on Sunday, May 18th, 2014 in comments on ABC's "This Week"

    <!--this makes sure the truth-o-meter content doesn't wrap around the mugshot.-->
    Jerry Brown says 'virtually no Republican' in Washington accepts climate change science

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    [​IMG] California Gov. Jerry Brown claimed that virtually no Republicans believe in climate change science.

    More than 1,500 wildfires have ravaged California so far in 2014, more than twice the state sees in an average year. On ABC’s This Week, Gov. Jerry Brown, a Democrat, cited scientific research that links the increased number of fires to the state’s changing climate.

    Host George Stephanopoulos asked Brown how he’d adapt to the future, given skepticism among Republicansin Washington. Short answer: not easily.

    "That's a challenge," Brown said. "It is true that there's virtually no Republican who accepts the science that virtually is unanimous. I mean there is no scientific question. There's just political denial for various reasons, best known to those people who are in denial."

    Brown then pivoted away from Washington to say that "we here in California are on the front lines, we got to deal with it."

    PolitiFact decided to take a closer look at how Republicans in Congress perceive climate change. We are focusing on Republicans in Washington because that’s how the question to Brown was framed.

    Republicans more skeptical about climate change

    Recent national polls say that Republican voters are less likely than Democrats and independents to believe humans cause global warming. Among Republicans, tea party Republicans are even less likely to accept the science than the party base.

    Among current Republicans in Congress, a group of 278, we were able to find many examples of politicians questioning climate change science to some degree.

    Most recently, Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., made waves for denying a link between human activity and climate change.

    "I do not believe that human activity is causing these dramatic changes to our climate the way these scientists are portraying it," Rubio told Jonathan Karl on ABC’s This Week May 11. "And I do not believe that the laws that they propose we pass will do anything about it. Except it will destroy our economy."

    That’s in line with other prominent Republicans, such as House Majority Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio, and Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas.

    Organizing for Action, a group that backs President Barack Obama, published a lengthy list of climate change deniers in Congress, with evidence to back each one.

    Still others, like Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., have notably changed on the issue, even after co-authoring legislation to address the issue.

    Republicans who say they believe the science

    We found relatively few Republican members of Congress who accept the prevailing scientific conclusion that global warming is both real and man-made. Brown’s office didn’t return our request for comment, so we are unable to compare our evidence to any that he might have.
    • Rep. Michael Grimm, R-N.Y.: Grimm was a notable skeptic until April 2014, when he told MSNBC’s Chris Hayes, "The mass majority of respected scientists say that it’s conclusive, the evidence is clear. So I don’t think the jury is out. There’s no question that, you know, the oceans have risen, right? And the climate change part is, is a real part of it."
    • Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine: Collins worked with Sen. Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., on a climate change bill in 2009 that proposed an alternative to cap-and-trade cutting carbon dioxide emissions.
    • Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn.: "I am one senator who thinks climate change is a problem, humans are causing it, and we need to deal with it," he said at an Environment and Public Works Committee hearing in 2009.
    • Sen. Mark Kirk, R-Ill.: He’s called climate change a "long-term concern."
    • Rep. Chris Smith, R-N.J.: "Climate change is a global challenge that must be addressed with a global solution," he said in 2007 as he backed a climate change provision in a House bill.
    • Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn.: "I accept the fact that we as a country, and we as a world, need to address this issue," he said on the Senate floor in 2008.
    • Sen. John Thune, R-S.D.: When asked if he thought global warming was man-made, he said, "I’m not denying that."
    • Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen, R-N.J.: "Do I believe in climate change? I do, yeah," he told National Journal in 2011. "With the weather patterns over the past five years. … What causes it? Quite honestly, I don’t know. … Humans have some effect on climate change. There’s so many factors."
    That’s eight out of 278, or about 3 percent.

    Are there others? It’s possible. Not every member of Congress has taken a clear stance on climate change, and we can’t read people’s minds. If we find more examples, we’ll update our list.

    Former Rep. Jim Greenwood, R-Pa., told PolitiFact that the number of Republicans like himself who stand by climate change science has been shrinking in recent years, due to a more polarized Congress.

    "There used to be a lot more of us," said Greenwood, who serves on the board of directors for the National Audubon Society. "A lot of us were very green in our voting records. That has changed. I think it's part of the phenomenon of the polarization of the Congress."

    Agreeing with climate change science also could be a political liability for Republicans. In 2010, South Carolina Rep. Bob Inglis lost a Republican primary to tea party challenger Trey Gowdy. Inglis blamed his loss, in part, over his belief in climate science.

    Inglis has since formed the Energy and Enterprise Initiative, a conservative group that agrees with climate change science. Energy and Enterprise Initiative spokesman Price Atkinson said Republicans support efforts to reduce CO2 emissions but criticize the way Obama and Democrats want to go about it.

    "There are many Republicans in Washington who accept, understand and agree with sound science regarding climate change, but it's the way forward that is more difficult for my fellow conservatives," Atkinson said. "We agree with fellow conservatives in opposing the president and the growth of government thru increased EPA regulations, which is precisely the worst way to reduce carbon emissions."

    The charged political climate makes finding clear positions on climate change from many Republicans tough to come by, say experts who follow the issue.

    "Most Republicans say the same thing behind closed doors: ‘Of course, I get that the climate is changing, of course I get that we need to do something — but I need to get reelected,’ " Audubon Society President David Yarnold told National Journal in 2013. "Somehow they’re going to have to find a safe place on this."

    Our ruling

    Brown said that "virtually no Republican" in Washington accepts climate change science. When it comes to on-the-record comments of members of Congress, Brown’s characterization is about right.

    We found at least eight Republicans in Congress who publicly voiced support for the scientific consensus and manymore conservative legislators who deny either a human link to the changing climate, or the fact that the climate is changing altogether.

    A reason for caution, however, is comments from someone like Yarnold — who suggest GOP members of Congress acknowledge climate change science behind closed doors but avoid the talk in public for political reasons.

    We rate Brown’s claim Mostly True.
  2. thoughtone

    thoughtone BGOL Veteran Registered

    source: Salon

    BBC staff ordered to stop giving equal airtime to climate deniers

    The network will stop airing "debates" featuring members of the anti-science fringe

    Good news for viewers of BBC News: You’ll no longer be subjected to the unhinged ravings of climate deniers and other members of the anti-science fringe. In a report published Thursday by the BBC Trust, the network’s journalists were criticized for devoting too much airtime (as in, any airtime) to unqualified people with “marginal views” about non-contentious issues in a misguided attempt to provide editorial balance.

    “The Trust wishes to emphasize the importance of attempting to establish where the weight of scientific agreement may be found and make that clear to audiences,” the report reads. “Science coverage does not simply lie in reflecting a wide range of views but depends on the varying degree of prominence such views should be given.” So far, according to the Telegraph, about 200 staff members have attended seminars and workshops aimed at improving their coverage.

    To illustrate the ridiculousness of having one fringe “expert” come in to undermine a scientific consensus, the report points to the network’s coverage of the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which in September released a report concluding, with 95 percent certainty, that man-made climate change is happening. As was their due diligence, BBC reporters called a dozen prominent U.K. scientists, trying to drum up an opposing viewpoint. When that didn’t happen — probably because 97 percent of scientists agree that man-made climate change is happening — they turned instead to retired Australian geologist Bob Carter, who has ties to the industry-affiliated Heartland Institute.

    To be clear, having one guy dismiss the consensus of hundreds of the world’s top climate scientists as “hocus-pocus science” wasn’t the “balanced” thing to do, and the only reason why people like Carter continue to be taken seriously is because news networks continue to suggest they should be.

    Were every network to start doing what the BBC is, their unfounded opinions would cease to be heard, Bill Nye wouldn’t have to keep debating them, and maybe, just maybe, they’d all just go away.
  3. thoughtone

    thoughtone BGOL Veteran Registered

  4. yureeka9

    yureeka9 The Enlightened One... BGOL Investor

    Republicans are a bunch of cowards. I can't even call them stupid because we all know these people came from somewhere. They came from the same grade schools and colleges everyone else attended and were taught the same scientific methods, reasoning and logic. Hell, some of them are scientists and doctor's themselves, but they pretend to not believe the science because they are too afraid of what will be said about them if they don't fall in line with the rank and file. There are probably a lot of intelligent progressive minds with the R behind their names but not much integrity and courage. So that's what you get when you have a party of people that love the taste of old white money and the wrankled white asses that have stolen it.
    Z MONSTER likes this.

    Z MONSTER Well-Known Member BGOL Investor

    Freon and CFCs are perfect examples of man changing the climate. Why is it against the law to release these chemicals into the atmosphere? Are the republicans in denial about this?
  6. QueEx

    QueEx Well-Known Member Super Moderator

    What’s New in the Latest U.S. Climate Assessment

    A volunteer helping flood victims in Wilmington, N.C., in September.CreditTamir Kalifa for The New York Times[​IMG]

    The New York Times
    By Brad Plumer
    and Henry Fountain
    Nov. 23, 2018

    WASHINGTON — Global warming is now affecting the United States more than ever, and the risks of future disasters — from flooding along the coasts to crop failures in the Midwest — could pose a profound threat to Americans’ well-being.

    That’s the gist of Volume Two of the latest National Climate Assessment, a 1,656-page report issued on Friday that explores both the current and future impacts of climate change. The scientific report, which comes out every four years as mandated by Congress, was produced by 13 federal agencies and released by the Trump administration.

    This year’s report contains many of the same findings cited in the previous National Climate Assessment, published in 2014. Temperatures are still going up, and the odds of dangers such as wildfires in the West continue to increase. But reflecting some of the impacts that have been felt across the country in the past four years, some of the report’s emphasis has changed.

    Predicted impacts have materialized
    More and more of the predicted impacts of global warming are now becoming a reality.

    For instance, the 2014 assessment forecast that coastal cities would see more flooding in the coming years as sea levels rose. That’s no longer theoretical: Scientists have now documented a record number of “nuisance flooding” events during high tides in cities like Miami and Charleston, S.C.
    “High tide flooding is now posing daily risks to businesses, neighborhoods, infrastructure, transportation, and ecosystems in the Southeast,” the report says.

    As the oceans have warmed, disruptions in United States fisheries, long predicted, are now underway. In 2012, record ocean temperatures caused lobster catches in Maine to peak a month earlier than usual, and the distribution chain was unprepared.

    It’s all tied together
    The report suggests a different approach to assessing the effects of climate change, by considering how various impacts — on food supplies, water and electricity generation, for example — interact with each other.

    “It is not possible to fully understand the implications of climate change on the United States without considering the interactions among sectors and their consequences,” the report says.
    It gives several examples, including recent droughts in California and elsewhere that, in combination with population changes, affect demand for water and energy. The report also cites Superstorm Sandy, six years ago, which caused cascading impacts on interconnected systems in the New York area, some of which had not been anticipated. Flooding of subway and highway tunnels, for example, made it more difficult to repair the electrical system, which suffered widespread damage.

    Beyond borders
    The United States military has long taken climate change seriously, both for its potential impacts on troops and infrastructure around the world and for its potential to cause political instability in other countries.

    The report cites these international concerns, but goes far beyond the military. Climate change is already affecting American companies’ overseas operations and supply chains, it says, and as these impacts worsen it will take a toll on trade and the economy.

    Global warming and natural disasters are also affecting development in less affluent countries. That, the report says, puts additional burdens on the United States for humanitarian assistance and disaster aid.

    Adaptation, adaptation, adaptation
    Since 2014, more detailed economic research has estimated that climate change could cause hundreds of billions of dollars in annual damage, as deadly heat waves, coastal flooding, and an increase in extreme weather take their toll. To limit that harm, communities will need to take steps to prepare beforehand.

    The previous assessment warned that few states and cities were taking steps to adapt to the impacts of climate change. That’s slowly changing, the new report finds. More and more communities are taking measures such as preserving wetlands along the coasts to act as buffers against storms.

    But outside of a few places in Louisiana and Alaska, few coastal communities are rethinking their development patterns in order to avoid the impacts from rising seas and severe weather that the report says are surely coming.

    The report warns that the country is particularly unprepared for the upheavals that will come as rising sea levels swamp coastal cities: “The potential need for millions of people and billions of dollars of coastal infrastructure to be relocated in the future creates challenging legal, financial, and equity issues that have not yet been addressed.”

    A focus on air quality
    While much of the discussion of climate change looks at the role of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases in warming the planet, the report puts a renewed emphasis on the impacts of other atmospheric pollutants like ozone and smoke, which can cause respiratory problems and lead to premature death.

    The report notes with “high confidence” that climate change will increase ozone levels, as rising temperatures and changes in atmospheric circulation affect local weather conditions. But the increases will not be uniform. By near the end of the century, the worst ozone levels will be found across a wide expanse of the Midwest and Northern Great Plains, while levels are expected to improve, at least somewhat, in parts of the Southeast.

    The report reiterates what residents of the West have learned from hard experience: that warmer springs, longer dry seasons in the summer and other impacts are lengthening the fire season. The smoke from fires affects not only health, the report says, but visibility.

    For more news on climate and the environment, follow @NYTClimate on Twitter.
    Brad Plumer is a reporter covering climate change, energy policy and other environmental issues for The Times's climate team. @bradplumer

    Henry Fountain covers climate change, with a focus on the innovations that will be needed to overcome it. He is the author of “The Great Quake,” a book about the 1964 Alaskan earthquake. @henryfountainFacebook


  7. QueEx

    QueEx Well-Known Member Super Moderator

    Donald Trump buried a climate change report because 'I don't believe it'

    Analysis by Chris Cillizza,
    CNN Editor-at-large
    November 26, 2018

    CNN)President Donald Trump on Monday dismissed a study produced by his own administration, involving 13 federal agencies and more than 300 leading climate scientists, warning of the potentially catastrophic impact of climate change.

    Why, you ask?

    "I don't believe it," Trump told reporters on Monday, adding that he had read "some" of the report.

    On one level, this shouldn't be surprising. Trump's views on climate change at this point are very, very well established.

    Just over eight years ago, he tweeted this:

    "The concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive."​

    In 2014, he penned this tweet:

    "It's late in July and it is really cold outside in New York. Where the hell is GLOBAL WARMING??? We need some fast! It's now CLIMATE CHANGE."​

    View this interactive content on CNN.com

    And then, this from last Wednesday: "Brutal and Extended Cold Blast could shatter ALL RECORDS - Whatever happened to Global Warming?"

    (Here are 20 more times in which Trump has dismissed the idea of global warming and/or climate change.)

    All of which brings me to last Friday -- 48 hours after Trump's how-can-the-world's-climate-be-changing-if-it's-cold-in-half-the-country-on-one-day tweet -- and the moved-up release of the Fourth National Climate Assessment.

    If you missed the study's release, well, that was the point. It was originally slated to be made public next month but was suddenly released on the day after Thanksgiving, aka Black Friday, when the country shops, eats, hangs with family and pays a total of zero attention to what's going on in politics. Outside of Christmas and the actual day of Thanksgiving, there's no better day to drop bad news that you don't want people to see.

    Because there are VERY few coincidences in politics, the decision to speed up the release of the report to the day after Thanksgiving -- rather than, say, today -- was clearly a move by the administration to cover up what they see to be bad news. Or, better put, news that challenges Trump's fact-free position that all of this talk of global warming and climate change is belied by, uh, the fact that it was cold in the Northeast on the day before Thanksgiving.

    The report, the second of four such annual studies commissioned by Congress, concludes not only that the world's temperature is rising and but also that the preponderance of evidence suggests human actions play a role in it. The report's authors conclude that the changing climate "is transforming where and how we live and presents growing challenges to human health and quality of life, the economy, and the natural systems that support us." And that, unless we change our practices and policies, there will be "substantial damages to the US economy, environment, and human health and well-being over the coming decades."

    The report goes on to detail the economic impact of climate change (hundreds of billions lost, with farms being hardest hit) and the physical toll it could take on our collective health, as factors like air quality, disease transmission by insects, food and water will "increasingly threaten the health and well-being of the American people."

    It's, candidly, a terrifying read. Unless we start making some major changes -- and soon -- we face the very real potential of crossing the point of no return when it comes to the planet's warming, and the consequences that result from it.

    Earlier the White House downplayed the report, saying it relied on extreme models that were selected during the Obama administration.

    It's important to note here: This is not a partisan document. It was, as I mentioned above, produced by 13 agencies within the Trump administration -- the result of Congress, in the 1980s, mandating that this sort of report be submitted every four years as a sort of reference point for lawmakers and legislators.

    And yet, the chances of Trump taking any of the advice from this report, which was conducted by HIS administration, are somewhere close to zero. Why? Because it was surprisingly cold in a lot places in the country on Thanksgiving, of course!

    This sort of thinking -- anecdotes = data -- is disproven time and time again by the actual science. A warming planet doesn't mean there won't be cold days. Or even cold weeks! Or months! It means that, in the long seep of history, the planet is getting hotter and hotter. And that those changes in the climate produce more wild and unpredictable weather events, like tornadoes and fires.

    Unfortunately, Trump's willingness to ignore the conclusions of experts because it doesn't jibe with what he wants the truth to be isn't isolated to just the climate.

    Trump has repeatedly dismissed the unanimous conclusion of the country's intelligence community that Russia interfered in the 2016 presidential election to help him and hurt Hillary Clinton.

    And of late, he has chosen to ignore the CIA's conclusion that Mohammed bin Salman personally ordered the murder of Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi in Turkey.​

    Trump's disdain for the idea of climate change is also born of his broader suspicions of the United States being taken advantage of by other countries. In Trump's conception, the US signs on to pledges to reduce its carbon footprint and the like and sticks to itwhile other competitor countries break the rules and force America to fight on the economic world stage with one hand tied behind its back.

    Trump insisted Monday the US is "the cleanest we've ever been," and said other countries weren't keeping up.

    "If we're clean, but every other place on earth is dirty, that's not so good," he said. "So I want clean air, I want clean water, very important."

    What's genuinely scary about all of this is that, unlike some random dude on the street who chooses to ignore the science on climate change, Donald Trump is in a position to have a considerable impact on how we approach (or don't) solving the problem. He already has -- pulling the United States out of the Paris Climate Accord. That makes the US the only country in the world not signed on to the global attempt to curb climate change.

    The decisions Trump makes -- or, more likely, doesn't -- on climate change are not the sort of thing that are easily reversible. This latest report -- you know, the one that the Trump administration sought to bury because its conclusions are at odds with the President's personal beliefs -- suggests they may not be reversible at all.

    CNN's Kevin Liptak contributed to this report.



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