Cool It  

Posted by Big Gav

The TED Blog has a look at Bjorn Lomborg's new book "Cool It" and recommends not following the advice of the skeptical "environmentalist" / political scientist.

Wired editor Chris Anderson got an advance copy of Bjorn Lomborg's upcoming book Cool It: The Skeptical Environmentalist's Guide to Global Warming, and his summary is: read it, but don't follow his advice.

Lomborg (watch his TED2005 speech) argues that although global warming is clearly happening and is human-caused, the debate over what to do about it has been polluted by way too much bad science, non-science, inflamed rhetoric and outright fibs.

In the book, the Danish political scientist offers numerous examples of how much of the rhetoric over the effects of climate change doesn't stand up to scrutiny (for example: the most likely effect of climate change would be to increase, not decrease, the amount of ice in Antarctica).

"It's time to put the debate over whether human-driven climate change is happening behind us and instead focus on technologies to decarbonize the economy," writes Anderson. But climate change is only one of three strong reasons to do this, he adds: the others are economics (rising direct and indirect costs of oil and carbon fuels) and geopolitics (oil revenues prop up bad governments around the world).

There is a fourth reason that Anderson forgets, and which has been convincingly put forth by Al Gore in his TED2006 speech: it's a moral imperative.

I think we all look forward to the day oil revenues no longer prop up bad governments.

RealClimate considers an outbreak of much ado about nothing - this time the global warming denial world breaking out into a steamy lather about importance of some historical temperature data.
Another week, another ado over nothing.

Last Saturday, Steve McIntyre wrote an email to NASA GISS pointing out that for some North American stations in the GISTEMP analysis, there was an odd jump in going from 1999 to 2000. On Monday, the people who work on the temperature analysis (not me), looked into it and found that this coincided with the switch between two sources of US temperature data. There had been a faulty assumption that these two sources matched, but that turned out not to be the case. There were in fact a number of small offsets (of both sign) between the same stations in the two different data sets. The obvious fix was to make an adjustment based on a period of overlap so that these offsets disappear.

This was duly done by Tuesday, an email thanking McIntyre was sent and the data analysis (which had been due in any case for the processing of the July numbers) was updated accordingly along with an acknowledgment to McIntyre and update of the methodology.

The net effect of the change was to reduce mean US anomalies by about 0.15 ÂșC for the years 2000-2006. There were some very minor knock on effects in earlier years due to the GISTEMP adjustments for rural vs. urban trends. In the global or hemispheric mean, the differences were imperceptible (since the US is only a small fraction of the global area). ...

RealClimate also looks at the disappearing arctic ice. At this rate the fighting over newly exploitable north pole oil will be breaking out next year.
A few people have already remarked on some pretty surprising numbers in Arctic sea ice extent this year (the New York Times has also noticed). The minimum extent is usually in early to mid September, but this year, conditions by Aug 9 had already beaten all previous record minima. Given that there is at least a few more weeks of melting to go, it looks like the record set in 2005 will be unequivocally surpassed. It could be interesting to follow especially in light of model predictions discussed previously.

There are a number of places to go to get Arctic sea ice information. Cryosphere Today has good anomaly plots. The Naval Sea ice center has a few different algorithms (different ways of processing the data) that give some sense of the observational uncertainty, and the National Snow and Ice Data Center give monthly updates. All of them show pretty much the same thing.

The Australian has a report on the changing legal climate - "Litigation is heating up over climate change".
CLIMATE change litigation is heating up, with billions of dollars in projects already before the courts on greenhouse grounds.

This week, the world's biggest producer of export thermal coal, Xstrata Coal, fronted a Brisbane court hearing in an appeal over a planned mine expansion in north Queensland, under challenge because of potential greenhouse impacts. And on August 21-22, the Federal Court will carry out a judicial review -- again prompted by carbon emissions -- of government approvals of Centennial Coal's Anvil Hill coal project in the NSW Hunter Valley.

"I'm advising my clients that there's a present exposure -- likely to increase -- to actions being brought by people, based on inadequate exposure of carbon impacts on a company," John Taberner, a partner at major law firm Freehills, said. He points to other actions, including challenges to a windfarm in NSW and a Carlton United Beverages brewery in Sydney, as examples of the trend.

Climate change lawsuits not only cost time and money by pushing out deadlines, but were soon likely to extend to actions seeking costs due to personal injury or economic loss, Mr Taberner said. Those risks could mount when firmer carbon emission caps were set by the federal Government, because firms would risk shareholder action if they failed to properly report on the gases they produce or the financial consequences of their carbon debt, he said. ...

The SMH reports that uptake of green power is growing rapidly - "Households switch on to green power".
AUSTRALIANS are backing their commitment to fight climate change with their wallets, spending as much as $400 extra a year to go for green power. Despite a lack of federal support for renewable energy, green power sales have surged.

In NSW alone the number of customers paying extra for renewable energy to be fed into the grid on their behalf has more than doubled in the past six months and more than tripled in the 12 months to June. Nearly 8 per cent of all Australian households choose to pay more for power to ensure it is environmentally friendly.

For the average family, a 100 per cent commitment to green power could cost up to $400 extra a year. For customers buying 10 per cent green power for their homes - the minimum offered by energy retailers - more than $50 a year is added to their electricity bills.

The public enthusiasm for renewable energy has prevented nearly 4.2 million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions entering the atmosphere every year, says the GreenPower office. "That's equivalent to taking 930,000 cars off the road and is five times the emission reduction achieved by the Federal Government's phase-out of incandescent light bulbs," said the Australian Conservation Foundation campaigner Tony Mohr. In February the federal Minister for the Environment, Malcolm Turnbull, announced that the Government would phase out energy-intensive incandescent bulbs by 2009-10, saving up to 800,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions.

The rise in sales of green power has coincided with heightened public awareness of the dangers of climate change due in great part to the drought, to the film An Inconvenient Truth, and to a British Treasury report last year by Sir Nicholas Stern on the costs of ignoring it. The GreenPower scheme was started by the NSW Government in 1997 in consultation with the energy industry and environment groups. The scheme was extended nationally three years later.

To be eligible, renewable energy projects must have begun after 1997 to ensure they are selling new green power into the electricity grid, rather than reselling renewable energy that has been in the system for many years. Only that way can consumers be sure that the electricity they are paying for is cutting greenhouse gas emissions.


* TreeHugger - Plextronics Breaks World Record for Organic Solar Cell Efficiency
* IT Week Business Green - Could PC management software succeed where turn off campaigns fail?
* Technology Review - GM plans to develop batteries with A123 Systems for its new electric vehicle.
* Technology Review Geothermal: Exploiting an Enormous Energy Source
* The Australian - Unrest will hamper LNG project. Looks like Woodside and Shell are pushing to do Pluto and Browse before Sunrise. Which means the East Timorese won't see any money or jobs for quite a few years.
* The Australian - ExxonMobil inflates Bass gas future. There is some weird commercial jockeying going on here I think. But anything that delays coal-to-liquids plants is fine by me.
* Envirofuel - Australia, the peak oil microcosm
* The Australian - Trading house's move will deliver Bass oil direct to Japanese homes
* The Australian - Clean energy shake-out
* STCWA - Energy crisis at Turkey's doorstep
* AlterNet - It's Time to Withdraw Iraq's Oil Law
* ZNet - The Iraq Oil Ministry: In the Service of the Oil Companies?
* The Times - Total and Chevron agree to work together in Iraq
* New Straits Times - In Iraq, oil is the byword that rules them all
* AP - Italy probe unearths huge Iraq arms deal
* The Observer - Fatigue cripples US army in Iraq
* New York Times - Things Fall Apart, but Some Big Old Things Don’t
* New York Times Book Review - Grass Roots Rising: Paul Hawken’s “Blessed Unrest”
* USA Today - Scientist's arrest stirs concern
* Chris Floyd - Goading Xerxes: A New Tactical Twist in the Coming War on Iran
* Mark Thornton - The Ron Paul Ultimatum
* TruthDig - The Last Days of Democracy
* TruthDig - Chris Hedges and the ‘Other War’
* SMH - Fair Dinkum. Under new TSA rules all Australians will be bound and gagged on US flights.
* The New Shelton Wet / Dry - Don't Annoy the Squid


Hey all…I just found this brand new green and sustainable living concept on the market that was invented in Oregon. It’s called the NW Modern from ideabox and the man who created this home was also the brains behind the e-rated appliances, the predecessor to the Department of Energy’s Engery Star Program.

Ideabox is sustainable and green in both building materials and construction. It’s the hippest and most resourceful thing I’ve seen since Bluetooth technology! This energy efficient pre-fab home is wrapped up in a cool, modern design that is actually affordable!

For the environmentally responsible consumer this cabin is cool and sleek. I mean we’re talking living large here in 400 sq. feet of luxury in a clever high end pre-fab home with a very intelligent design.

The research I’ve done shows that ideabox uses environmentally friendly products and construction with wireless technologies. Designed with the idea that you can live large in a small space, ideabox is attracting very posh customers. And hey…less can be more! My family is considering it for a vacation home on some land at the lake or the beach. Another thought I have is putting it on my property for when the kids come home. Once you’re in college, staying right with mom is tough. This way, they can have space but still be “home”.

Here is some more information I found on how environmentally friendly ideabox is…

· Wireless technology because power lines are SO last year.
· Standing seam metal roofing – sustainable and fire retardant
· Fiber-cement siding for low maintenance
· Galvalume corrugated metal siding for an industrial look and efficient construction.
· Bamboo flooring because it’s sleek and renewable
· Energy Star appliances and lighting for the best in energy efficiency
· Marmoleum countertops, made from renewable resources
· Fully insulated walls for maximum energy efficiency
· Energy-efficient ENERGY STAR labeled windows to regulate temperature
· Less than 2% construction waste because materials are ordered to size
· Low volatile organic compound paints for better, healthier indoor air
· Duo-flush toilets for water efficiency
· Day lighting; windows in all exterior walls and interior re-lite strategies
· Tankless water heaters to reduce electricity use

I haven’t seen anything like this before! Have any of you? If you want more information about these homes you can visit

Post a Comment


Locations of visitors to this page

blogspot visitor
Stat Counter

Total Pageviews




Blog Archive


australia (619) global warming (423) solar power (397) peak oil (355) renewable energy (302) electric vehicles (250) wind power (194) ocean energy (165) csp (159) solar thermal power (145) geothermal energy (144) energy storage (142) smart grids (140) oil (139) solar pv (138) tidal power (137) coal seam gas (131) nuclear power (129) china (120) lng (117) iraq (113) geothermal power (112) green buildings (110) natural gas (110) agriculture (91) oil price (80) biofuel (78) wave power (73) smart meters (72) coal (70) uk (69) electricity grid (67) energy efficiency (64) google (58) internet (50) surveillance (50) bicycle (49) big brother (49) shale gas (49) food prices (48) tesla (46) thin film solar (42) biomimicry (40) canada (40) scotland (38) ocean power (37) politics (37) shale oil (37) new zealand (35) air transport (34) algae (34) water (34) arctic ice (33) concentrating solar power (33) saudi arabia (33) queensland (32) california (31) credit crunch (31) bioplastic (30) offshore wind power (30) population (30) cogeneration (28) geoengineering (28) batteries (26) drought (26) resource wars (26) woodside (26) censorship (25) cleantech (25) bruce sterling (24) ctl (23) limits to growth (23) carbon tax (22) economics (22) exxon (22) lithium (22) buckminster fuller (21) distributed manufacturing (21) iraq oil law (21) coal to liquids (20) indonesia (20) origin energy (20) brightsource (19) rail transport (19) ultracapacitor (19) santos (18) ausra (17) collapse (17) electric bikes (17) michael klare (17) atlantis (16) cellulosic ethanol (16) iceland (16) lithium ion batteries (16) mapping (16) ucg (16) bees (15) concentrating solar thermal power (15) ethanol (15) geodynamics (15) psychology (15) al gore (14) brazil (14) bucky fuller (14) carbon emissions (14) fertiliser (14) matthew simmons (14) ambient energy (13) biodiesel (13) investment (13) kenya (13) public transport (13) big oil (12) biochar (12) chile (12) cities (12) desertec (12) internet of things (12) otec (12) texas (12) victoria (12) antarctica (11) cradle to cradle (11) energy policy (11) hybrid car (11) terra preta (11) tinfoil (11) toyota (11) amory lovins (10) fabber (10) gazprom (10) goldman sachs (10) gtl (10) severn estuary (10) volt (10) afghanistan (9) alaska (9) biomass (9) carbon trading (9) distributed generation (9) esolar (9) four day week (9) fuel cells (9) jeremy leggett (9) methane hydrates (9) pge (9) sweden (9) arrow energy (8) bolivia (8) eroei (8) fish (8) floating offshore wind power (8) guerilla gardening (8) linc energy (8) methane (8) nanosolar (8) natural gas pipelines (8) pentland firth (8) saul griffith (8) stirling engine (8) us elections (8) western australia (8) airborne wind turbines (7) bloom energy (7) boeing (7) chp (7) climategate (7) copenhagen (7) scenario planning (7) vinod khosla (7) apocaphilia (6) ceramic fuel cells (6) cigs (6) futurism (6) jatropha (6) nigeria (6) ocean acidification (6) relocalisation (6) somalia (6) t boone pickens (6) local currencies (5) space based solar power (5) varanus island (5) garbage (4) global energy grid (4) kevin kelly (4) low temperature geothermal power (4) oled (4) tim flannery (4) v2g (4) club of rome (3) norman borlaug (2) peak oil portfolio (1)