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More evidence of that dreaded climate change

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The funny thing is about CC, everybody with a brain knows about it and those who don't like the message are in denial. When the Military and all there energy companies come to the same conclusion how can you deny this is happening.

Spin away my Legions. :rav:

 

Utilities Knew About Climate Change Back In 1968 And Still Battled The Science

Like Big Oil, power companies have long seen the danger of fossil fuels, a new report finds.

Oil giants like Exxon Mobil Corp. and Royal Dutch Shell aren’t the only corporations that understood what was happening to the climate decades ago and covered that knowledge up.

Utility companies recognized that emissions from burning fossil fuels warmed the planet as far back as 1968, according to a report released Tuesday.

That year, a top science adviser to President Lyndon B. Johnson warned utility executives gathered at an industry conference that the federal government feared the projected increase in carbon dioxide emissions over the coming decades could wreak havoc on the environment.

“Carbon dioxide is not toxic, but it is the chief heat-absorbing component of the atmosphere,” Donald F. Hornig said at the 1968 annual convention of the Edison Electric Institute, according to the trade group’s newsletter from that year. “Such a change in the carbon dioxide level might, therefore, produce major consequences on the climate ― possibly even triggering catastrophic effects such as have occurred from time to time in the past.”

The new report, published by the watchdog Energy & Policy Institute, contains dozens of internal documents unearthed from the archives of utility industry associations that initially funded research into climate change, but later opposed efforts to stop it. The research paints a picture of how the utility sector transformed from financier to foe of climate science at a critical point when carbon emissions could have been addressed. 

Less than two years ago, documents unearthed by InsideClimate News and the Los Angeles Times similarly revealed that Exxon Mobil had understood climate change in the late 1970s. But by the late 1980s, the oil company deliberately covered up the evidence to protect its financial interests, funding a Big Tobacco-style disinformation campaign to discredit climate scientists with a network of research institutes pumping out pseudoscience. State attorneys general are now investigating Exxon Mobil for allegedly fraudulently misleading its investors about the risks posed by climate change.

A spokesman for Exxon Mobil insisted in an email to HuffPost that the reporting on the company’s climate record “is not credible” and an “easily discredited talking point.”

Earlier this year, Shell was dragged into the controversy when an internal corporate film from 1991 was surfaced by the Dutch news outlet The Correspondent. It demonstrated Shell’s long-ago grasp of the science behind climate change. 

Utilities followed a similar arc. By the 1970s and ’80s, the Edison Electric Institute and the industry-backed Electric Power Research Institute had sponsored cutting-edge climate research looking at the surge of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, the rise in global temperatures and the risk that melting polar ice caps would flood coastal cities. In 1988, the two organizations co-sponsored research into “the potential effects of climate change on electric utilities.” In a report released that April, the Electric Power Research Institute concluded that “climate changes possible over the next 30 years may significantly affect the electric utility industry.”

There are “striking parallels” between the recent investigations of the oil industry and the utility companies, Dave Anderson, a researcher at the Energy & Policy Institute who uncovered the documents, told HuffPost. “We can now show utilities knew about climate change as far back as the oil industry did.”

But in 1989, the industry’s response to the emerging science took a turn. That year, investor-owned utilities backed the formation of the Global Climate Coalition, a lobbying group that sought to torpedo any governmental action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The coalition disbanded in 2001 after successfully pressuring President George W. Bush to withdraw from the Kyoto Protocol, the United Nations-brokered deal to reduce planet-warming emissions in rich countries.

“The evidence suggests they were very much involved in the deliberate deception [about the dangers of carbon emissions] going on at that time,” said Anderson, who previously worked on the Greenpeace-led Exxon Knew campaign. “Scientists had been warning for years that they could be a problem, and by the late 1980s, it was pretty clear there was an emerging consensus among scientists.”

Anderson noted that the Edison Electric Institute’s website traces the industry’s involvement in climate change issues back only 30 years, to 1987, and that details of the institute’s current work on the issue are locked in a password-protected “Climate Workshop.”

In a short statement, Edison Electric Institute said the industry has slashed its carbon footprint.  

“The electric power industry has reduced carbon emissions by 25 percent below 2005 levels as of the end of 2016,” Jeffrey Ostermayer, an EEI spokesperson, told HuffPost in an email.

The Electric Power Research Institute did not respond to a request for comment. 

Industry efforts to undermine regulations on carbon emissions had real impact. In 2015, utility sector emissions were higher than in 1989, according to U.S. Energy Information Administration data. Totals fell slightly in 2016, although they are likely to increase again as coal use ticks up in response to rising natural gas prices.

To be sure, utilities have made strides in recent years by building up their renewable energy infrastructure and converting smog-spewing coal plants to natural gas, which burns cleaner. But corporations like Atlanta-based Southern Company, a $49 billion giant with more than 9 million customers, continue to publicly deny the basic science behind climate change.

Asked on CNBC in March if carbon dioxide is the primary cause of climate change, Southern Company CEO Tom Fanning said, “No, certainly not.”

“Is climate change happening? Certainly. It’s been happening for millennia,” Fanning said, promoting a commonly used, albeit widely debunked, argument by climate science deniers that the warming seen in the last few decades is a mostly natural occurrence.

In a brief phone interview, a Southern Company spokesman said: “We’re meeting or exceeding all regulations in terms of climate.”

“Southern Company is committed to a leadership role in finding solutions that make technological, environmental and economic sense,” he added in an email. “The focus of this effort must be on developing and deploying technologies that reduce [greenhouse gases] while making sure that energy remains reliable and affordable.”

The utility has urged the Trump administration to reverse power plant rules enacted by President Barack Obama to cut back emissions. It funds groups like the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity, which argues that the benefits of carbon dioxide outweigh the environmental costs.

“Southern Company would seem to be the individual company that’s the most Exxon-like,” Anderson said. “The move Trump is making is very much in line with what lobbyists at that company have been doing in recent years.”

 

This story was updated to include a statement from Exxon Mobil. 

Edited by TimS
Don't know how many more ways I can ask people - when you copy/paste, choose "paste as plain text" - there's an entire thread about it at the top of the forum

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Please, not sure how else to ask, when you copy/paste, choose "paste as plain text" - it takes ZERO extra clicks. There's an entire thread locked to the top of the forum explaining this :read:

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Posted (edited) · Report post

From a 1912 Newspaper clipping

 

Or for a scientific publication, check out:

On the Influence of Carbonic Acid in the Air upon the Temperature of the Ground. Svante Arrhenius, Philosophical Magazine and Journal of Science, Series 5, Volume 41, April 1896, pages 237-276.

 

But nope, totally made up by the Chinese.

dotclimate1912-blog480-v2.jpg

Edited by RIRockhound
Forgot image

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5 minutes ago, Gotcow? said:

Please show me any cost effective alternative to fossil fuels.

why is it every discussion about IF it's happening always gets boiled down to "i will deny it until it's cost effective to deal with it".

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I'm looking forward to the open northwest passage. I wish things would move along a little faster. 

That flat tundra looks like the perfect landscape for growing rice. We just need it a little warmer. 

Go north young man!

The greatest trait of humans is our ability to adapt. What's the worry? :D

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Just now, fish'nmagician said:

why is it every discussion about IF it's happening always gets boiled down to "i will deny it until it's cost effective to deal with it".

Why is it that every discussion about it is happening leave out how much money you want to fix it, how your going to do it and what will represent effective change?

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Talk to me about the exploding human population and it's affect on the environment and I'll listen. 

I don't think all your cute little feel good "green energy" lies are going to fix the problem. 

9.7 billion by 2050? Another billion mouthbreathers? But solar power!

Stop it.

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1 hour ago, JimW said:

Let's look at costs to do nothing.  Not sure how you decide what is cost effective without that first

What assurances can you give that man is responsible for 'this' warming trend?

You are aware that at a historical scale, C02 is at the low end, right? Low being 160 ppm, high bring 7000+ ppm, presently 400 ppm.

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1 hour ago, J said:

 

 

The greatest trait of humans is our ability to adapt. What's the worry? :D

I'll pretend for a moment that everything going on is natural.

The tundra for rice growing? Part of the tundra has bedrock at the surface, or mountains, or other terrain you can cross off the list. The rest of it? The only way people can get around is frozen ground, i.e. permafrost. And alot of that is underlain by soft organic deposits like peat. No permafrost, no getting around. Machines would sink 10 feet down or something. Think ice road truckers. Think how the Alaskan pipeline and settlements have to be built on gravel pads to insulate the permafrost.

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1 hour ago, TimS said:

Please, not sure how else to ask, when you copy/paste, choose "paste as plain text" - it takes ZERO extra clicks. There's an entire thread locked to the top of the forum explaining this :read:

Sorry Tim, I tried to fix it but could not go back. :howdy:

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11 minutes ago, patchyfog said:

I'll pretend for a moment that everything going on is natural.

The tundra for rice growing? Part of the tundra has bedrock at the surface, or mountains, or other terrain you can cross off the list. The rest of it? The only way people can get around is frozen ground, i.e. permafrost. And alot of that is underlain by soft organic deposits like peat. No permafrost, no getting around. Machines would sink 10 feet down or something. Think ice road truckers. Think how the Alaskan pipeline and settlements have to be built on gravel pads to insulate the permafrost.

The permafrost is holding an incredible amount of carbon dioxide, when it melts things will go from bad to worse exponentially.

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