Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Global Consensus: Wide Majority Believe Climate Change Is Real (Including Evangelicals, Prominent Republicans, Nobel Laureates, and American People)

Note: I am keeping this post at the top of the blog for Wednesday as it touches on a very important subject.

Jay Bush and the three Republicans running for the U.S. Senate have been trying to say that there is no consensus that global warming is real. However, as I show in the post below, there really is no debate among anyone these days.

Apparently Jay Bush of Blogging for Bryant and the three Republican "candidates" running for the U.S. Senate didn't get the memo that the debate is over--global warming is real.

However, that has not stopped Bush and the three "scientists" from trying to confuse the public by saying there is no proof that global warming is real and trying to discredit those who do say it is real.

In a post on Blogging for Bryant Monday, Bush said, "The Republican candidates for U.S. Senate aren't willing to dismiss facts that don't fit Al Gore and Harold Ford, Jr.'s narrow ideology on global warming.

Pretending there is scientific consensus on climate change is like pretending the Earth is flat...."

In effect, Jay is calling anyone who says global warming real dumb.

However, it turns out Jay is the dumb one because as I have noted below, basically everyone and their brother now admits global warming is real. Whether it be evangelicals, prominent Republicans, Nobel laureates, or the American people as a whole, they all agree the threat is real and we must act now.

Evangelicals, who make up a big part of the Republican base, have joined the global warming debate big time and are urging action on the issue.

According to the New York Times, "86 evangelical Christian leaders have decided to back a major initiative to fight global warming, saying "millions of people could die in this century because of climate change, most of them our poorest global neighbors."

Among signers of the statement, which will be released in Washington on Wednesday, are the presidents of 39 evangelical colleges, leaders of aid groups and churches, like the Salvation Army, and pastors of megachurches, including Rick Warren, author of the best seller "The Purpose-Driven Life."

The group noted, "For most of us, until recently this has not been treated as a pressing issue or major priority," the statement said. "Indeed, many of us have required considerable convincing before becoming persuaded that climate change is a real problem and that it ought to matter to us as Christians. But now we have seen and heard enough."

Even some of the nation's most prominent Republicans are seeing the light and admitting global warming is real.

One such Republican is hardcore conservative, Senator Lisa Murkowski. According to the Washington Post, "In an interview, Murkowski said that "there's an emerging consensus we've got to deal" with climate change, adding it would be "tough" to cut greenhouse gases sufficiently through voluntary programs alone."

And according to Bloomberg news, "Representative Bob Inglis, a South Carolina Republican, says he ``pooh-poohed'' global warming until he trekked to the South Pole in January.

"Now, I think we should be concerned,'' says Inglis, who heads the U.S. House Science Research subcommittee. ``There are more and more Republicans willing to stop laughing at climate change who are ready to get serious about reclaiming their heritage as conservationists.''

Further, Senator Larry E. Craig, who is also a Republican, has said, "I have come to believe, along with many of my colleagues, that there is a substantial human effect on the environment."

Senator John McCain is also another prominent Republican at the forefront on the fight to stop global warming.

Speaking on the subject of global warming, McCain said, "We are convinced that the overwhelming scientific evidence indicated that climate change is taking place and human activities play a very large role."

Republican Senator Susan Collins also knows global warming is real and is trying to fight it. She recently said, "In order to address this serious problem, it is important that we take steps now to reduce carbon dioxide emissions from power plants, automobiles, and other sources."

Her Republican colleague, Olympia Snowe agrees. Speaking on the inability of President Bush and the Republican Congress to address climate change, Senator Snowe said, "(The) lack of a comprehensive strategy has forced the United States to relinquish any influence it could have had in international negotiations that move ahead without us."

It is official: Republican leaders are coming around on global warming.

Another group of people who believe 100% that there is no doubt global warming is real is Nobel laureates, who are among the world's most respected experts in their fields of study.

For example, F. Sherwood Rowland, Alan MacDiarmid and Steven Chu all agree "that global warming was a real phenomenon."

The evidence they cited for their conclusion was that, "The year 2005 was the warmest of the last 150 years, and there has been a considerable increase in global surface temperatures , particularly in the Arctic region."

Further, "Human activity has been instrumental in creating these effects, with increasing levels of atmospheric pollutants and carbon dioxide levels as a result of fossil fuel use and deforestation."

At a recent conference on global warming, Chu put the whole argument in perspective when he noted that, "the warmest period in the Earth's history was followed by the greatest mass extinction in human history."

These three scholars are all backed up by a recent report that said, "The National Academy of Sciences, reaching that conclusion in a broad review of scientific work requested by Congress, reported Thursday that the "recent warmth is unprecedented for at least the last 400 years and potentially the last several millennia."

A panel of top climate scientists told lawmakers that the Earth is heating up and that "human activities are responsible for much of the recent warming."

Their 155-page report said average global surface temperatures in the Northern Hemisphere rose about 1 degree during the 20th century".

"The report was requested in November by the chairman of the House Science Committee, Rep. Sherwood Boehlert, R-N.Y., to address naysayers who question whether global warming is a major threat.

Last year, when the House Energy and Commerce Committee chairman, Rep. Joe Barton, R-Texas, launched an investigation of three climate scientists, Boehlert said Barton should try to learn from scientists, not intimidate them." "There is nothing in this report that should raise any doubts about the broad scientific consensus on global climate change," he said."

"Climate scientists Michael Mann, Raymond Bradley and Malcolm Hughes had concluded the Northern Hemisphere was the warmest it has been in 2,000 years. Their research was known as the "hockey-stick" graphic because it compared the sharp curve of the hockey blade to the recent uptick in temperatures and the stick's long shaft to centuries of previous climate stability.

The National Academy scientists concluded that the Mann-Bradley-Hughes research from the late 1990s was likely to be true, said John "Mike" Wallace, an atmospheric sciences professor at the University of Washington and a panel member. The conclusions from the '90s research "are very close to being right" and are supported by even more recent data, Wallace said."

Finally, the American people, by a large margin, believe global warming is real.

According to a recently released poll, "Most Americans (85 percent) believe global warming is happening now, more than half (60 percent) perceive global warming as a great threat to themselves, and even more (88 percent) believe global warming threatens future generations..."

The truth here is, as much as Jay Bush, Bob Corker, Van Hilleary and Ed Bryant want you believe there is a debate about global warming, there really isn't one. They facts and the experts speak for themselves.

It must be really sad to be alone, the way the Bush, Corker, Hilleary, and Bryant are on this issue.

But hey, it's not all bad--they can still party with the people who say we didn't land on the moon, the people that believe Elvis is still alive, and the people who still think the Earth is flat on the weekend.

Bush, Corker, Hilleary and Bryant all need to wake up and smell the coffee; global warming is real and we need a U.S. Senator who has the political will to fight it.

That is why I am support Congressman Harold Ford Jr. in this race.

184 Days

Days of Congressional Inaction on Ethics

Above is the number of days that have passed since Jack Abramoff pleaded guilty to bribing Congressman.

It is also the number of days in which Congress has failed to pass an ethics reform bill that would limit private travel, ski and golf junkets, and would call for a full disclosure of expenses by lobbyists on members of Congress.

It is time for Congress to step up and pass an ethics reform bill that would do all of the above. In addition, it is time to end the pork barrel spending system as we know it and establish an independent ethics commission that would review ethics complaints against members of Congress.

I am proud Congressman Harold Ford Jr. is fighting for that reform!

Read Congressman Ford's call for reform of the House rules here!