fredag 4 september 2009

US Senators Freeze Despite Global Warming

The Guardian reports that The US Freezes on Climate Change:
  • The stalled US climate change debate has killed the hope of reaching a final agreement at the Copenhagen summit
  • Without concrete action in the Senate, there will not be an actual deal ready to sign in Copenhagen. With no Senate action, there's no guarantee that the US will commit to binding targets. And with no US targets, there will be no firm agreement from China, India or other emerging powers.
  • It won't be a failure if there's no deal in Copenhagen, but it will be hard to gauge success with no new expectations.
What is the true reason that US Senators hesitate? Is it because most US Senators are not convinced about the reliability of present computational climate models predicting catastrophical global warming from CO2 emission? Is this because the Senators knowledge of mathematics and computer simulation is not deep enough? If so, would some education help?

Or is it because the Senators realize that they can only convince voters about the necessity of costly emission controls, if they themselves are convinced about the predictive power of present climate models, and they do not feel convinced? 

It seems that the only possibility is that the Senators sit down and carefully study mathematics and computational simulation, and after this experience check if they are convinced or not. It should be possible to bring them to the research front in a couple of weeks, with good math teachers. I guess this effort cannot be spared? 

I guess we here touch the essence of democracy? You cannot dictate, only convince others by first convincing yourself by first thinking yourself. Not even President Obama can get around this predicament. In his campaing Obama talked like a convinced: "the science is beyond dispute, the facts are clear", but today he has to face a disputable reality of unclear facts. How is Obama going to handle this situation? By joining the Senators math class?

  • The cost of reducing China’s total greenhouse gas emissions is likely to reach $438bn a year within 20 years, and developed economies will have to bear much of that cost, according to a group of Beijing’s leading climate economists.The figure, equivalent to about 7.5 per cent of China’s estimated gross domestic product in 2030, is likely to be deployed to support Beijing’s argument at December’s climate change summit in Copenhagen that industrialised nations must share the cost of cutting emissions in developing countries.
Another math lesson for both US President Obama and EU Chairman Reinfelt? 

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