What does it tell us? That climate change is accelerating beyond all expectations.
The report took over a year to complete, and here's some of the new evidence the authors have uncovered (I'm quoting the bullet points from the press release):
- Satellite and direct measurements now demonstrate that both the Greenland and Antarctic ice-sheets are losing mass and contributing to sea level rise at an increasing rate.
- Arctic sea-ice has melted far beyond the expectations of climate models. For example, the area of summer sea-ice melt during 2007-2009 was about 40% greater than the average projection from the 2007 IPCC Fourth Assessment Report.
- Sea level has risen more than 5 centimeters over the past 15 years, about 80% higher than IPCC projections from 2001. Accounting for ice-sheets and glaciers, global sea-level rise may exceed 1 meter by 2100, with a rise of up to 2 meters considered an upper limit by this time. This is much higher than previously projected by the IPCC. Furthermore, beyond 2100, sea level rise of several meters must be expected over the next few centuries.
- In 2008 carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuels were ~40% higher than those in 1990. Even if emissions do not grow beyond today’s levels, within just 20 years the world will have used up the allowable emissions to have a reasonable chance of limiting warming to less than 2 degrees Celsius.
Yes, but how does that jive with what Lorne Gunter was squawking about in today's Leader Post? Well, it doesn't. Why? Because Gunter is hopelessly confused and misled on the science of climate change. (I say "confused and misled" because the alternative is that he's lying.)
Look, I just haven't got time right now to tear apart all of Gunter's latest nonsense. Suffice to say, that everytime I've gone off to fact check one of his anti-science screeds, I've found that his opinions are based on a misreading of scientific reality. Usually, all he is doing is parroting the talking points being issued from propaganda machines such as the Friends of Science.
I'll post more later. But in the meantime, you can read some actual science on climate change by reading the Copenhagen Diagnosis. Unlike this hacked-email circus Gunter was crowing about, this report is probably the most important thing you'll read about this year.
First, there's this piece on Saskatchewan Conservative MP MauriceVellacott's opinion that it's just peachy how women in Saskatoon have restricted access to abortion.
The article's fine but Vellacott's views (which are of course not the Leader-Post's fault) are loathsome.
I'll say it for the one zillionth time: there's nothing wrong at all with being opposed to abortion. But when you're an elected lawmaker pushing your old-fashioned, sloppy-sentimental, anti-science and frankly medieval moral values on normal 21st century people who don't agree with them for good reasons (i.e. women's rights supercede fetal rights and when you make abortion illegal women die and in any case a fetus ISN'T A BABY you manipulative, fact-twisting propagandha-spewing dicks), you are a thug.
Unless I'm profoundly mistaken Maurice Vellacott opposes all legal abortion, period. He's an extremist. That's fine for him personally but it's disgusting that he's trying to push this junk on the rest of us.
Much worse is this opinion column by climate change unbeliever Lorne Gunter stating that global warming is a fraud.
I don't understand why the Leader-Post is printing it when anthropogenic warming is a near-universally accepted scientific fact. Would they print articles arguing the sun revolves around the earth? Would they print articles saying the earth is flat? Would they print articles saying cigarettes are safe? No they would not. They'd dismiss those as the raving of crackpots.
Yet they'll print this crap. It's ridiculous.
(You know who accepts global warming? NASA. The United Nations. Most scientists. You know who doesn't? Sarah Palin and Rush Limbaugh. Case closed.)
More on how Lorne Gunter is full of crap here. And here. And here. (Desmog Blog)
And here's a terrifying article in the Guardian on the consequences of decades of climate-change denial propaghanda.
Our civilization is threatened and the Leader-Post is running junk opinion columns by deluded ideologues. It's inexcusable and you should tell them so. You can send letters to the editor here.
THIS IS GOING TO GO OVER WELL … As the Liberals look like they’re about to China Syndrome, (Canadian Press) more dingbats are climbing out of the Conservative woodwork. First, a Nova Scotia MP claims unemployed Haligonas are lazy no-good bums, (Halifax Chronicle Herald) then Saskatoon area MP Maurice Vellacott takes a page from the Brad Trost playbook. (Star-Phoenix)
SUCH A WISE INVESTMENT The 80,000 seat Pontiac Silverdome, former home of the Detroit Lions, was built for $55 million when it opened in 1975 (Wikipedia). Last week, a Canadian property developer bought the stadium and the 122 acre lot on which it sits for $583,000. He was the highest bidder. (Toronto Star)
SARAH PALIN HAS FANS WHO LIKE HER BECAUSE … UMMM … at least you can understand where Miley Cyrus and Jonas Brothers fans come from. (HuffPo)
I BET THE INVESTIGATING OFFICER IS BALD … RCMP bust some guy selling lots and lots of knock-off hair curling irons. (CBC Sask)
MORE ON THE GRIT SPLIT? Norman Spector isn’t exactly known for his progressive views so anything he writes with an Liberals-look-bad tone is suspect. But if La Presse and Chantal Hebert are saying that the wife of the former Liberal leader is angry enough to join the NDP, (Globe and Mail) then it’s a good question as to why the English-language media in Canada didn’t pick up the same story from the same original source.
ANOTHER DAWG BLOG TO RECOMMEND Why isn’t a Calgary white supremacist arrested for allegedly planting a bomb not considered a terrorist? (Dawg’s Blog)
As Rosie also noted in his article, which he wrote despite a failed attempt to secure an interview via the Toronto-based singer/songwriter's management, Royal Wood is his real name. I can believe it. In fact, we used to have a sales rep in the office named Royal (as in the bank, he used to joke, or a royal pain-in-the-ass) Watson. True, Royal Wood stretches the bounds of credibilty a bit more than that, given that "wood" is a slang term for an erection. Nonetheless, he's a top-notch performer. To prove my point, here's the video for his song "Juliet" (YouTube)