SciBlogs

Posts Tagged Bangkok

The Climate Show #11: a trillion tonnes of trouble Gareth Renowden Apr 14

Join the conversation at Hot Topic

Glenn says he thinks this show’s “a cracker” (but he always says that), and despite the lack of a special star guest — though with the help of assorted luminaries from the Climate Futures Forum (David’s Karoly and Frame, Robert Gifford and Erik Conway –) we cover a huge range of issues, from Jim Hansen’s upcoming visit to NZ, the climate talks in Bangkok and Arctic ice, to why we need to think about our carbon budget, and why a trillion tonnes of the stuff might be a tad too much. John Cook joins us to discuss why there really is a scientific consensus on the reality of climate change and its causes, and in the solutions section we look at new developments in battery technology.

Watch The Climate Show on our Youtube channel, subscribe to the podcast via iTunes, or listen direct/download here:

The Climate Show

Follow The Climate Show at The Climate Show web site, on Facebook and Twitter.

News & commentary:

Climate Futures Forum: Routefinding the future: reflecting on the climate futures forum.

Jim Hansen to tour NZ: dates announced.

New warning on Arctic ice melt.

Bangkok climate talks stall.

The trillionth ton: http://trillionthtonne.org/,
A ton too far (more bad news).

Scotland could cut emissions 50% by 2020.

Interviews: David Frame, Bob Gifford, Erik Conway.

Debunking the skeptic with John Cook from Skeptical Science.

Scientific Consensus

The broader picture: The 5 characteristics of scientific denialism

Common technique: Fake Experts — http://www.galileowaswrong.com/

The argument: ’31,000 scientists signed a skeptic statement (OISM Petition)’: http://sks.to/oism

Response to the survey question “Do you think human activity is a significant contributing factor in changing mean global temperatures?” (Doran 2009)

Distribution of the number of researchers convinced by the evidence of anthropogenic climate change and unconvinced by the evidence with a given number of total climate publications (Anderegg 2010).

Naomi Oreskes searched the Institute for Scientific Information database for papers matching ‘climate change’ – out of 928 papers, 0 papers disagreed with scientific consensus.

Fact and Fraud: Brad Johnson (Wonk Room)

http://sks.to/consensus

FEEDBACK: http://www.theclimateshow.com/the-climate-show-10-david-suzuki-survives-tec#comment

Solutions

Batteries that can recharge in seconds.

Lithium-air batteries could rival liquid fuels.

Thanks to our media partners: Celsias.co.nz, Scoop and KiwiFM.

Theme music: A Drop In The Ocean by The Bads.

[PS: Not Fade Away was Buddy Holly of course, but this is my excuse...

… and the stutter was of course d-down to Daltrey, who also did a f-fade …

… unmissable, that. What a band, what a drummer!]

How not to negotiate #1 Gareth Renowden Oct 01

Join the conversation at Hot Topic

targetNew Zealand’s commitment to piffling and highly conditional emissions targets appears to have been weakened even further by chief negotiator Adrian Macey’s admission in an interview with Point Carbon that if the conditions aren’t met:

“…we reserve the right to drop (our target) below 10 per cent.”

As Geoff Key of Greenpeace notes, this is like holding the world to ransom with a pop gun:

Point Carbon asked Ambassador Macey about why New Zealand hasn’t made a unilateral pledge. For comparison, the European Union has pledged to reduce emissions to 20% below 1990 levels no matter what the rest of the world does and has written this into law. In reply Adrian Macey said, possibly without realising the irony of the statement, ’We didn’t think there was any point in setting a low-ambition figure.’

Meanwhile, the rest of the world thinks that’s exactly what we’ve got. I can only hope that John Key was paying attention at the UN climate conference last week and will return home ready to take firmer action.

But I’m not holding my breath.

Postcard from Bangkok Gareth Renowden Sep 30

Join the conversation at Hot Topic

This is a guest blog from Oxfam NZ’s executive director Barry Coates, in Bangkok for the latest round of negotiations in the run-up to Copenhagen. Barry sets the scene:

Tcktcktck. The clock counts down to the deadline for climate change negotiations. Not to achieve an agreement is unthinkable. It was good last week to hear the speeches of heads of state at the UN meeting in New York saying how committed they are to a deal. But the key question is how. It is not easy to negotiate a hugely important global deal amongst 192 countries. And especially since climate science demands that there be a dramatic transformation of economic activity worldwide.

That’s the scene setting for UN negotiations on climate change that started yesterday in Bangkok. There are 15 days of negotiations before the Copenhagen conference and hundreds of pages of densely typed documents. The challenge? Distill it all down to about 30 pages, agree on some of the key issues and avoid a massive greenwash.

The past 24 hours shows how hard this will be. The opening was, as usual, marked by fine sounding speeches. My favourite was the Thai Prime Minister saying there is no Plan B, only Plan F where ‘f’ is for fail.

But even before the day had ended the good vibes had been replaced by a fight between the US (supported by other rich countries) and India (supported by most of the developing countries). The issue is whether the developing countries need to take on legally binding obligations or whether they have obligations that are different to those of the rich countries (as is provided for in the mandate for these negotiations agreed in Bali almost two years ago).

The lines are drawn tightly in these negotiations. Most of the dynamic is between the two blocs, ignoring the fundamental point that we will all be in deep trouble if there is no global agreement. The casualty is trust and cooperation.

So not much progress yet. I am a part of the Oxfam delegation here, working both inside and outside the convention centre. I must say that the real fun is happening amongst the myriad of groups who have joined in the tcktcktck coalition across South-East Asia. I am also on the board of the tcktcktck campaign so it’s great to be joining with activists from across the region.

It’s not all bad though. I had time to walk through the Bangkok markets near our high rise hotel. It’s a great grounding in the high levels of poverty that exists in this society. And in the vulnerability to climate change that has just struck hard in Manila. The images of people’s lives being devastated in the Philippines has been a really useful reminder of the humanity behind the negotiations. If these negotiations don’t work, there will be many millions more suffering under climate change in the future.