December 1, 2020

NOW EVERYONE WILL GET ALONG

Wall Street Journal:

“The new coronavirus infected people in the U.S. in mid-December 2019, a few weeks before it was officially identified in China ….”

THE THOMAN REPORT
Rick Thoman, climate specialist at University of Alaska Fairbanks:

“High temperature for Dec 01 at Fairbanks Airport wound up at 39F (+3.9C), a new record for the date.”

“As of 953pm AKST Dec 01, Juneau Airport has reported 4.77″ (121.2mm) of rain the past 24 hours. This is the greatest 24 hour rainfall on record. …”


MEMORY LANE
NOAA-ESRL/Scripps (“In-situ CO2 Data”):

December 1, 2020, CO2 413.69 ppm
December 1, 2019, CO2 410.88 ppm
December 1, 2018, CO2 408.31 ppm
December 1, 2017, CO2 406.22 ppm
December 1, 2016, CO2 – no data –
December 1, 2015, CO2 400.47 ppm
December 1, 2014, CO2 398.67 ppm
December 1, 2013, CO2 396.24 ppm
December 1, 2012, CO2 393.94 ppm
December 1, 2011, CO2 390.84 ppm
December 1, 2010, CO2 389.91 ppm

December 1, 1992, CO2 354.63 ppm (year of UNFCCC)
December 1, 1990, CO2 353.49 ppm
December 1, 1980, CO2 337.26 ppm
December 1, 1970, CO2 324.77 ppm
December 1, 1960, CO2 315.80 ppm


December 3, 2020
HOW TO WRITE SCIENCE NEWS
Nature (journal):

“Physicists in China challenge Google’s ‘quantum advantage’ / … photonic computer performed in 200 seconds a calculation that on an ordinary supercomputer would take 2.5 billion years to complete. … They have used beams of laser light to perform a computation which had been mathematically proven to be practically impossible on normal computers. The team achieved within a few minutes what would take half the age of Earth on the best existing supercomputers. …”


BLAME AND RESPONSIBILITY

The New Yorker/Bill McKibben:

“The Climate Debt the U.S. Owes the World / …[I]ntuitions about blame and responsibility have usually been offered in airy moral terms,* but a new report released on Wednesday puts them into numbers. The analysis, from the activist group U.S. Climate Action Network, draws on the work of Tom Athanasiou, at a California-based nonprofit called EcoEquity, and his colleagues at the Climate Equity Reference Project …. [They] calculate how much of the burden each country should be bearing, based on its historical contribution to the cloud of greenhouse gases and its ‘capacity to pay’ – a reflection of how rich the nation became during the fossil-fuel era. The report finds ‘that the US fair share of the global mitigation effort in 2030 is equivalent to a reduction of 195% below its 2005 emissions levels …’ That is, we can’t meet our moral and practical burdens simply by reducing our own emissions; we’ve already put so much carbon into the air (and hence reduced the space that should rightly go to others) that we need to make amends. Of this hundred-and-ninety-five-per-cent reduction, Athanasiou says, seventy per cent would be made domestically, by building solar panels, rolling out electric cars, and insulating buildings. … ‘The rest—the other 125%—would come by way of financial and tech support for adaptation and rapid decarbonization in poor and developing countries.'”

* The responsibility for the greenhouse effect has been quantified in numbers by experts for years. EcoEquity’s work, for example, was cited by Robin Hahnel six years ago in the best explanation of international climate politics to date, a lecture titled “The Political Economy of Climate Change,” for the RSA on December 4, 2014:

“[G]ood friends of mine in the ‘advanced’ world – Bill McKibben, Naomi Klein – they still don’t get it. … [I]f you take into account how much of what’s up there the Chinese put up, compared to the Americans … the Chinese pledge is right in the middle of the target for what their fair share is. And the U.S. pledge is approximately half of what our fair share is. And I got news for you: the European pledge is half too.”

Note also – from the same 2014 talk:

“[C]limate reparations, climate debt, technology transfers, and adaptation funds- the problem with all that is, it inevitably will yield much less than what is actually deserved and fair — because … it comes across as charity or guilt money and that’s just not the way the world works.”


MEMORY LANE

NOAA-ESRL/Scripps (“In-situ CO2 Data”):
December 3, 2020, CO2 413.54 ppm
December 3, 2019, CO2 411.13 ppm
December 3, 2018, CO2 409.03 ppm
December 3, 2017, CO2 407.00 ppm
December 3, 2016, CO2 404.42 ppm
December 3, 2015, CO2 400.53 ppm
December 3, 2014, CO2 398.26 ppm
December 3, 2013, CO2 396.34 ppm
December 3, 2012, CO2 393.31 ppm
December 3, 2011, CO2 390.95 ppm
December 3, 2010, CO2 389.50 ppm

December 3, 1990, CO2 353.89 ppm
December 3, 1980, CO2 337.28 ppm
December 3, 1970, CO2 324.81 ppm
December 3, 1960, CO2 315.63 ppm


December 4, 2020

EDITORIAL SENSIBILITY

Ishmael Reed in Counterpunch:

“… Judging by trends in Black literature, the salespeople have won out. In a Poets and Writers’ interview, a superior novelist, Elizabeth Nunez, complains that publishers demand ‘girlfriend books’ from Black authors. The other genre that’s trending might be called ‘how-to-get-along-with-Black people,’ an auxiliary of the self-improvement industry. The recent list of 100 Black fiction writers compiled by U.S.A. Today, leaned heavily toward the fiction of Black women, but even that category omitted major Black women writers like Nunez, Charlene Hatcher Polite, Kristin Hunter Lattany, and Margaret Walker, whose “Jubilee!” should be taught in tandem with ‘Uncle Tom’s Cabin,’ a view of slavery from the inside and one from the outside.”

“The dean of Black writers, Louise Meriweather, is also missing. … Of course, if she were a white novelist of her stature there would be no need for a Go Fund Me effort to assist in her recovering from the Covid virus [at age 97]. She’s bedridden ….”


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