Local Issue | Contact Councillors on the Idling Recommendation

Dear Citizens,

As citizens of London, you have an opportunity to voice your concern for our shared natural environment.  The startling stats can be found below.

The City of London will be making changes to our idling bylaw which was introduced in 1999.  City staff have recommended a one minute anti-idling bylaw with exemptions for temperature only for severe temperatures.

Proposed Amendments June 1st 2009

On June 1st it was amended to three minutes by ETC (Environment & Transportation Committee) and our current temperature exemptions were added back in.  Currently – Toronto is looking at ten seconds.  Burlington is 60 seconds with no temperature exemption.

If you missed the deadline today at 9am for the agenda – you have until the June 15th, 9am, for your comments to be added on as ‘added’ communications.  On the 15th the recommendation will go to council.  On the 22nd – there will be a public participation meeting.

Lastly – please engage your family and friends to write in a brief submission or call our elected officials in support of the one minute bylaw as presented by city staff. (Removing the amendments made at ETC which made it much weaker).  Our councillors want to hear from us.

Thank you in advance for your care and concern for we all breathe the same air.

It is our hope that sooner rather than later municipalities across Canada and the world will find the political will for a 10 second maximum tolerance on idling, as well addressing the infamous drive-thru issue.  Drive-thrus continue to proliferate as climate change escalates and air pollution becomes more and more dire.  For more information contact Canadians for Action on Climate Change: canadianclimateaction@gmail.com

Email addresses | Copy & Paste:

adecicco@london.ca,

bmacdona@london.ca

barmstro@london.ca,

bpolhill@london.ca

cmiller@london.ca

councillors@london.ca

dwinning@london.ca

gbarber@london.ca

ghume@london.ca

husher@london.ca

jbaechle@london.ca

jbryant@london.ca

nancy@nanbran.com

paul@paulhubert.ca

pvanmeer@london.ca

rcaranci@london.ca

sorser@london.ca

seagle@london.ca

tgosnell@london.ca

wloncc558@rogers.com

Please Cc:

Kevin Bain (City of London Clerk) kbain@london.ca

Linda Rowe (City of London Secretary) lrowe@london.ca

The Numbers:

  • Ontario’s smog causes 9,500 deaths per year, medical association says.  Of these 1,000 occurred immediately after times of intense pollution.
  • The research on the human costs of pollution and pollution-related diseases estimated that around 21,000 people in Canada will die from breathing in toxic substances drifting in the air this year with 3,000 of those deaths due to short-term exposure to smog.
  • By 2031, short term exposure to air pollution will claim close to 90,000 lives in Canada, while long-term exposure will kill more than 700,000, the report said.
  • Ontario and Quebec residents are the worst hit Canadians, with 70 percent of the premature deaths occurring in Central Canada.
  • In the past 15 years alone, there has been a fourfold increase in asthma in children under 15 in Canada.
  • OMA estimates for annual premature deaths (2130) due to smog in Toronto alone were almost three times the number of deaths (831) Health Canada attributes to secondhand smoke exposure for the whole of Canada.
  • In 2008, 80 per cent of those who die due to air pollution will be over 65.
  • 25 Canadians under 19 will die from short-term acute pollution exposure this year.
  • Children are the most vulnerable breathing 50% more air per pound than adults.
  • A child’s breathing zone is lower than adults so they are more exposed to vehicle exhausts and heavier pollutants that concentrate at lower levels in the air.
  • In 2008 there will more than 9,000 hospital visits and 30,000 emergency room visits, and 620,000 doctor’s office visits, stemming from air pollution.
  • Eight thousand people a day die from air pollution. There are 3 million annual deaths, worldwide.
  • Emissions from an individual idling a car in London, will emit nearly the same amount of emissions volume as the total annual emissions from an individual in Bangladesh.
  • More than 20 million people have been displaced by climate-related sudden-onset natural disasters in 2008 alone, according to a new study by OCHA and the Norwegian Refugee Council’s (NRC) Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre.
  • The total number of people affected by natural disasters due to accelerating climate change has risen sharply over the past 10 years, with an average of 211 million people directly affected each year, nearly five times the number impacted by conflict in the same period.
  • April 2009: CO2 hits 800,000-year high at Mauna Loa Observatory Mauna Loa Observatory, Hawaii (USA) Atmospheric CO2 reached 389.47 parts per million (ppm).
  • Wednesday June 10th – co2 went up again.  It is now at 390.18
  • The human respiratory system can only handle an upper level of 426 ppmv before the blood begins to become acidic after long-term exposure.

The Costs:

  • The national economy: air pollution will top eight billion dollars in 2008, and by 2031 it will go over 250 billion.
  • The Ontario Medical Association estimated that health care costs caused by poor air quality in 2000 would amount to nearly $630 million, not to mention the $566 million in costs due to workers taking sick days.
  • In Ontario alone, lost productivity will cost Canada $349,400 this year. By 2031 that will total over $9 million in damage.
  • Healthcare costs in the province will be $221,800 this year, up to almost $6.5 million total by 2031.
  • Economic damage to quality of life will hit $194,100 in Ontario in 2008, up to $265,000 in 2031 and totalling almost $5.5 million by that time.
  • Economic damage due to loss of life will cost $3,644,100 in 2008, rising to $6,367,200 in 2031, and totalling $115,674,500 by 2031.

Air Releases of Carcinogens by Province

Rank Provinces Air Releases of Toxics
of Carcinogens (kg)
Percentage
1 Ontario 2,736,369 38. 18 %
2 Alberta 1,283,727 17. 91 %
3 Quebec 1,261,851 17. 61 %
4 British Columbia 797,639 11. 13 %
5 New Brunswick 392,403 5. 47 %
6 Manitoba 369,686 5. 16 %
7 Saskatchewan 115,839 1. 62 %
8 Nova Scotia 97,280 1. 36 %
9 Newfoundland 65,029 . 91 %
10 Northwest Territories 29,103 . 41 %
11 Prince Edward Island 18,325 . 26 %

http://www.pollutionwatch.org/

Think drive-thrus are insignificant?  Think again …

idling-report-markham1

We have used the calculations provided to us in this study (idling times are completely in line with Tim Horton’s own study (3-4.5 minutes) & with the national average of 3.84 seconds) to produce a very conservative number for the total number of emissions, etc. produced in London drive-thrus.

London has 156 drive-thrus – so we have based our amounts on (29 x 5) 145 as opposed to 156 to keep our results conservative.

Here are the results: (City of London only)

  • Idling time: 108, 795, 760 minutes.
  • Fuel Wasted: 2, 175, 925 litres of fuel wasted.
  • Emissions: 590 tons of carbon dioxide & other pollutants.
  • To offset this amount of pollutants in one year we would need to plant 29,220 trees.
  • Fuel wasted – enough for an average car to circle the globe 425 times.

And this is ONLY London based on only 150 drive-thrus. Imagine the result from all cities in Ontario, in Canada, in North America, in the world.

For more info. on this study (data) please contact us at councilofcanadians.london@sympatico.ca

We thank Dave De Sylva for taking the time, effort, (out of pocket) costs and conviction to produce this report.

https://drivethrulies.wordpress.com/wp-admin/post.php?action=edit&post=309

Humanity’s carbon budget set at one trillion tonnes

If emissions keep growing at the present rate, the carbon emissions budget for the 2 degrees target will run out in 2021.

Humanity’s carbon budget set at one trillion tonnes

No more than one-quarter: that’s the proportion of existing reserves of oil, gas and coal that we can burn if we are serious about keeping the planet from warming by 2°C or more.

These are the conclusions of the most comprehensive efforts yet to pin down just how much carbon dioxide can be emitted into the atmosphere.

If governments are to stick to their pledge to avoid “dangerous” global warming – which most politicians and many scientists take to be no more than 2°C – the models come up with roughly the same answer. Humans must not inject more than 1 trillion tonnes of carbon into the atmosphere in total.

That, say teams led by Myles Allen of the University of Oxford and Malte Meinshausen of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research in Germany, will give us a 50:50 chance of limiting global warming to 2°C.

To improve the chances that the planet remains this side of 2°C, Meinshausen’s study suggests we should emit no more than 750 billion tonnes of carbon in total. The risk of exceeding 2°C would then drop from 50% to 25%.

Halfway there

Industrial activity since the mid-18th century means we have already emitted 500 billion tonnes of carbon – half of the 1-trillion-tonne budget. “At some point in the last few years, we released the 500-billionth tonne of carbon,” says Allen. We can afford to dump only 250 billion tonnes more – or perhaps 500 billion tonnes, if we are willing to run the higher risk.

So how much longer have we got? Don’t let past emissions fool you, says Allen. “It took 250 years to burn the first 500 billion tonnes. On current trends we’ll burn the next 500 billion in less than 40 years.”

Busting the budget

That means that if we continue emitting carbon at the same rate as we are now, we will exhaust what Allen calls the trillion-tonne “carbon budget for the human race” by 2040. Anything that is emitted beyond that will commit the planet to more than 2°C of CO2-induced warming.

Meinshausen and colleagues calculate that we could exhaust the carbon budget within as little as 20 years. They also find that if we were to burn all the proven reserves of fossil fuels, this would inject nearly three times the carbon budget into the atmosphere.

To have a 75% chance of keeping to the 2°C target, “we can burn less than one-quarter of known economically recoverable fossil-fuel reserves between now and 2050”, says Bill Hare of the Potsdam institute. “This means that whilst a lot of the oil and natural gas can be burned, certainly not much at all of coals reserves can.”

None of these figures include “unconventional” fossil fuel reserves, such as tar sands.

Good effort, but try harder

Both papers show that, because CO2 takes so long to disappear from the atmosphere, governments need to aim for a global zero-carbon economy in the long run. This confirms results from earlier studies.

Regarding shorter-term goals, Meinshausen says that to have a good chance of staying below 2°C, global emissions must start falling after 2015. Achieving this will be no small feat: at present we emit between 1% and 3% more each year than we did the year before. That trend must be reversed within six years.

The researchers say that even the most ambitious climate plans tabled so far must be pushed further. The G8’s aim is that by 2050 we will have cut emissions to half their levels in 1990, but even that may not be enough. Depending on the timing, the cutbacks would have to be closer to 70% below 1990 levels, studies suggest.

http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn17051-humanitys-carbon-budget-fast-running-out.html

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/05/090502092019.htm

http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2009/04/hit-the-brakes-hard

The Declaration of Cumaná, Venezuela | This is a Brilliant Read Based on How We are Currently Functioning as a Society

The Declaration of Cumaná

April 23rd 2009, by ALBA Member Countries

ALBA

Cumaná, Venezuela

We, the Heads of State and Government of Bolivia, Cuba, Dominica, Honduras, Nicaragua and Venezuela, member countries of ALBA, consider that the Draft Declaration of the 5th Summit of the Americas is insufficient and unacceptable for the following reasons:

– The Declaration does not provide answers to the Global Economic Crisis, even though this crisis constitutes the greatest challenge faced by humanity in the last decades and is the most serious threat of the current times to the welfare of our peoples.

– The Declaration unfairly excludes Cuba, without mentioning the consensus in the region condemning the blockade and isolation to which the people and the government of Cuba have incessantly been exposed in a criminal manner.

For this reason, we, the member countries of ALBA believe that there is no consensus for the adoption of this draft declaration because of the reasons above stated, and accordingly, we propose to hold a thorough debate on the following topics:

1. Capitalism is leading humanity and the planet to extinction. What we are experiencing is a global economic crisis of a systemic and structural nature, not another cyclic crisis. Those who think that with a taxpayer money injection and some regulatory measures this crisis will end are wrong. The financial system is in crisis because it trades bonds with six times the real value of the assets and services produced and rendered in the world, this is not a “system regulation failure”, but a integrating part of the capitalist system that speculates with all assets and values with a view to obtain the maximum profit possible. Until now, the economic crisis has generated over 100 million additional hungry persons and has slashed over 50 million jobs, and these figures show an upward trend.

2. Capitalism has caused the environmental crisis, by submitting the necessary conditions for life in the planet, to the predominance of market and profit. Each year we consume one third more of what the planet is able to regenerate. With this squandering binge of the capitalist system, we are going to need two planets Earth by the year 2030.

3. The global economic crisis, climate change, the food crisis and the energy crisis are the result of the decay of capitalism, which threatens to end life and the planet. To avert this outcome, it is necessary to develop and model an alternative to the capitalist system. A system based on:

– solidarity and complementarity, not competition;
– a system in harmony with our mother earth and not plundering of human resources;
– a system of cultural diversity and not cultural destruction and imposition of cultural values and lifestyles alien to the realities of our countries;
– a system of peace based on social justice and not on imperialist policies and wars;
– in summary, a system that recovers the human condition of our societies and peoples and does not reduce them to mere consumers or merchandise.

4. As a concrete expression of the new reality of the continent, we, Caribbean and Latin American countries, have commenced to build our own institutionalization, an institutionalization that is based on a common history dating back to our independence revolution and constitutes a concrete tool for deepening the social, economic and cultural transformation processes that will consolidate our full sovereignty. ALBA-TCP, Petrocaribe or UNASUR, mentioning merely the most recently created, are solidarity-based mechanisms of unity created in the midst of such transformations with the obvious intention of boosting the efforts of our peoples to attain their own freedom. To face the serious effects of the global economic crisis, we, the ALBA-TCP countries, have adopted innovative and transforming measures that seek real alternatives to the inadequate international economic order, not to boost their failed institutions. Thus, we have implemented a Regional Clearance Unitary System, the SUCRE, which includes a Common Unit of Account, a Clearance Chamber and a Single Reserve System. Similarly, we have encouraged the constitution of grand-national companies to satisfy the essential needs of our peoples and establish fair and complementary trade mechanisms that leave behind the absurd logic of unbridled competition.

5. We question the G20 for having tripled the resources of the International Monetary Fund when the real need is to establish a new world economic order that includes the full transformation of the IMF, the World Bank and the WTO, entities that have contributed to this global economic crisis with their neoliberal policies.

6. The solutions to the global economic crisis and the definition of a new international financial scheme should be adopted with the participation of the 192 countries that will meet in the United Nations Conference on the International Financial Crisis to be held on June 1-3 to propose the creation of a new international economic order.

7. As for climate change, developed countries are in an environmental debt to the world because they are responsible for 70% of historical carbon emissions into the atmosphere since 1750. Developed countries should pay off their debt to humankind and the planet; they should provide significant resources to a fund so that developing countries can embark upon a growth model which does not repeat the serious impacts of the capitalist industrialization.

8. Solutions to the energy, food and climate change crises should be comprehensive and interdependent. We cannot solve a problem by creating new ones in fundamental areas for life. For instance, the widespread use of agricultural fuels has an adverse effect on food prices and the use of essential resources, such as water, land and forests.

9. We condemn the discrimination against migrants in any of its forms. Migration is a human right, not a crime. Therefore, we request the United States government an urgent reform of its migration policies in order to stop deportations and massive raids and allow for reunion of families. We further demand the removal of the wall that separates and divides us, instead of uniting us. In this regard, we petition for the abrogation of the Law of Cuban Adjustment and removal of the discriminatory, selective Dry Feet, Wet Feet policy that has claimed human losses. Bankers who stole the money and resources from our countries are the true responsible, not migrant workers. Human rights should come first, particularly human rights of the underprivileged, downtrodden sectors in our society, that is, migrants without identity papers. Free movement of people and human rights for everybody, regardless of their migration status, are a must for integration. Brain drain is a way of plundering skilled human resources exercised by rich countries.

10. Basic education, health, water, energy and telecommunications services should be declared human rights and cannot be subject to private deal or marketed by the World Trade Organization. These services are and should be essentially public utilities of universal access.

11. We wish a world where all, big and small, countries have the same rights and where there is no empire. We advocate non-intervention. There is the need to strengthen, as the only legitimate means for discussion and assessment of bilateral and multilateral agendas in the hemisphere, the foundations for mutual respect between states and governments, based on the principle of non-interference of a state in the internal affairs of another state, and inviolability of sovereignty and self-determination of the peoples. We request the new Government of the United States, the arrival of which has given rise to some expectations in the hemisphere and the world, to finish the longstanding and dire tradition of interventionism and aggression that has characterized the actions of the US governments throughout history, and particularly intensified during the Administration of President George W. Bush. By the same token, we request the new Government of the United States to abandon interventionist practices, such as cover-up operations, parallel diplomacy, media wars aimed at disturbing states and governments, and funding of destabilizing groups. Building on a world where varied economic, political, social and cultural approaches are acknowledged and respected is of the essence.

12. With regard to the US blockade against Cuba and the exclusion of the latter from the Summit of the Americas, we, the member states of the Bolivarian Alternative for the Peoples of Our America, reassert the Declaration adopted by all Latin American and Caribbean countries last December 16, 2008, on the need to end the economic, trade and financial blockade imposed by the Government of the United States of America on Cuba, including the implementation of the so-called Helms-Burton Act. The declaration sets forth in its fundamental paragraphs the following:

“CONSIDERING the resolutions approved by the United Nations General Assembly on the need to finish the economic, trade and financial blockade imposed by the United States on Cuba, and the statements on such blockade, which have been approved in numerous international meetings.

“WE AFFIRM that the application of unilateral, coercive measures affecting the wellbeing of peoples and hindering integration processes is unacceptable when defending free exchange and the transparent practice of international trade.

“WE STRONGLY REPEL the enforcement of laws and measures contrary to International Law, such as the Helms-Burton Act, and we urge the Government of the United States of America to finish such enforcement.

“WE REQUEST the Government of the United States of America to comply with the provisions set forth in 17 successive resolutions approved by the United Nations General Assembly and put an end to the economic, trade and financial blockade on Cuba.”

Additionally, we consider that the attempts at imposing the isolation of Cuba have failed, as nowadays Cuba forms an integral part of the Latin American and Caribbean region; it is a member of the Rio Group and other hemispheric organizations and mechanisms, which develops a policy of cooperation, in solidarity with the countries in the hemisphere; which promotes full integration of Latin American and Caribbean peoples. Therefore, there is no reason whatsoever to justify its exclusion from the mechanism of the Summit of the Americas.

13. Developed countries have spent at least USD 8 billion to rescue a collapsing financial structure. They are the same that fail to allocate the small sums of money to attain the Millennium Goals or 0.7% of the GDP for the Official Development Assistance. Never before the hypocrisy of the wording of rich countries had been so apparent. Cooperation should be established without conditions and fit in the agendas of recipient countries by making arrangements easier; providing access to the resources, and prioritizing social inclusion issues.

14. The legitimate struggle against drug trafficking and organized crime, and any other form of the so-called “new threats” must not be used as an excuse to undertake actions of interference and intervention against our countries.

15. We are firmly convinced that the change, where everybody repose hope, can come only from organization, mobilization and unity of our peoples.

As the Liberator wisely said:

Unity of our peoples is not a mere illusion of men, but an inexorable decree of destiny. — Simón Bolívar

Published in: http://www.venezuelanalysis.com/analysis/4390

Canada’s greenhouse emissions soaring: UN report

1) Canada’s Report to the UN attached.  Canada has the worst record of any G-8 country and one of the worst of all countries who signed and ratified the Kyoto Protocol.  Spain actually is even worse but it signed through the EU agreement.

greenhouse-gas-emissions-2007

2) Unfortunately the global picture is also very bad.  Global emissions are rising at least as fast as the most pessimistic IPCC scenario of 2000.  Since 2000 the increase is more than twice the 1990s, on a per annual basis.


Canada’s greenhouse emissions soaring: UN report

By Margaret Munro, Canwest News Service

Canada’s greenhouse emissions are back on a ‘significant’ growth trajectory despite bold promises from federal and provincial leaders to get serious about cutting discharges.

Canada’s greenhouse emissions are back on a “significant” growth trajectory despite bold promises from federal and provincial leaders to get serious about cutting discharges.

The latest greenhouse-gas inventory from Environment Canada shows that after a slight dip in 2004-2006, Canada’s total emissions took off again, thanks largely to Alberta’s oilsands, an increase in the number of vehicles on the road, and greater reliance on coal-fired electricity.

“Long-term growth remains significant,” says an Environment Canada summary report, showing the country’s emissions are 33.8 per cent above Canada’s Kyoto commitment.

The figures are based on the 2009 national inventory report that Environment Canada quietly filed last week with the United Nations to meet its international reporting obligations. The full 673-page inventory is available on the UN’s website and shows Canada has the dubious distinction of having its emissions climb more since 1990 than any other G8 nation.

Canada ranks “first among the G8 nations” for increasing emissions, the report notes, even though Canada had committed to cut them. It notes that while Canada’s emissions have soared, Germany chopped its emissions by 18 per cent between 1990 and 2006, and the United Kingdom slashed its by 15 per cent.

“We’re laggards and obstructionists,” said climatologist Andrew Weaver at the University of Victoria who, like many scientists and environmentalists, has been urging the Canadian government to cut emissions for years.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper said he is committed to fighting climate change, and his government two years ago launched Turning the Corner: An Action Plan to reduce greenhouse gases by 20 per cent by 2020.

Weaver and other critics see little hope of the country living up to the commitment, given the Harper government’s enthusiasm for the oilsands.

“They’re turning the corner all right, but they are turning the wrong way,” said Weaver, pointing to the renewed upward trend in Canada’s emissions.

This 2009 Environment Canada inventory covers 1990 to 2007, the most recent year that details on human-induced greenhouse gas emissions are available.

It says total greenhouse gas emissions in Canada in 2007 were 747 megatonnes, an increase of four per cent from 2006 levels. That means Canada’s emissions in 2007 were about 26 per cent above the 1990 total of 592 megatonnes, and 33.8 per cent above Canada’s Kyoto target, which committed the country to be below 1990 levels by now.

Greenhouse gases trap heat in the atmosphere and are widely believed to help drive climate change. Massive amounts of carbon dioxide, a leading greenhouse gas, is released through the burning of fossil fuels, such as coal, oil and gas.

There was a dip in Canada’s emissions between 2004 and 2006, which Environment Canada says was due primarily to changes in electricity production and petroleum extraction activities. The weather also played a role, with warm winters in 2004 to 2006 curbing Canadians’ need for heating fuels.

But the overall trend is up, Environment Canada notes. “Between 1990 and 2007, large increases in oil and gas production — much of it for export — as well as a large increase in the number of motor vehicles and greater reliance on coal electricity generation, have resulted in a significant rise in emissions.”

Alberta is responsible for the biggest jump in emissions since 1990, but Saskatchewan, British Columbia and Ontario also have seen emissions climb much more than other provinces, the report says.

While the country’s total emissions have soared since 1990, the report notes that Canadian homeowners have been doing their bit to cut emissions. “Residential emissions were essentially the same in 2007 as they were in 1990,” the report says, noting that improved energy standards and higher-efficiency furnaces and appliances have “served to reduce emissions.”

It is transportation and energy production that has driven emissions up, the report concludes. Between 1990 and 2007, emissions from energy industries such as the oilsands and transportation increased by about 143 million tonnes, or most of the overall increase of 155 million tonnes, the report says.

There has been a proliferation of light-duty trucks, the number of which increased 117 per cent since 1990, and a 94 per cent increase in the number of heavy-duty trucks on Canadian roads.

To avoid the most catastrophic effects of climate change, scientists and policy-makers say global carbon emissions must be slashed between 50 and 80 per cent by 2050. If nothing is done, they say the climate will change and there will be more extreme and unpredictable weather, Arctic ice will continue to melt and global sea levels will rise.

“In Canada, the impact of climate change may be felt in extreme weather events, the reduction of fresh water resources, increased risk and severity of forest fires and pest infestations, a reduction in Arctic ice and an acceleration of glacial melting,” the Environment Canada report says.

http://www.canada.com/Business/Canada+greenhouse+emissions+soaring+report/1516154/story.html

From Ricardo Navarro | GAIA’s Steering Committee member for Latin America

Dear Friends:

In addition to Neil’s report that some members of GAIA were in Poznan  and we held a session to denounce some of the false solutions to climate  change, such as waste incineration, I also want to share with you my  impressions about certain themes in the meeting.

The first impression that I have is that, among the political leaders  such as ministers or heads of environmental policy of the various  countries, there is no consciousness about the gravity of the climate  problem. They all know the problem exists but their reactions and  proposals do not reflect the gravity of the situation. For example, they  talk of reducing emissions 20% by the year 2020 and 50% by 2050. But the  IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) says that, in order to have a 50% probability of keeping global temperature rise to 2C (after which there would be true environmental catastrophes), we would have to stabilize the concentration of CO2 equivalent gases in the atmosphere below 450ppm. This implies that the concentration of CO2 itself would have to be below 360ppm; but in 2005, the concentration of CO2 had already reached 379ppm. In other words, we are already past the limit for a scenario where we have only a 50% probability of holding the temperature below dangerous levels, and even so we are not acting with the necessary urgency.

This goal that so many politicians mention, of not passing 2C seems to  be merely wishful thinking since we have already increased 0.8C; as one  British scientist said: “…we have to try to keep the temperature  increase to 2C but we also have to prepare for an increment of 4C…and of course if it rises by 4C most probably there will be a series of  feedback mechanisms such as the escape of methane from the permafrost of Siberia, the Canadian tundra and ocean clathrates, as well as the destruction of the Amazon and the melting of the glaciers, which will push the temperature rise above 5C, then to 6C and then… ?”

To see the gravity of the case, we only have to remember that less than
8 months ago there was a tropical cyclone in Burma that left more than  150,000 dead, the equivalent of 2 Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombs together. And this is before the temperature has increased even 1C. I wonder, what will be these catastrophes that the IPCC speaks of if the temperature rises more than 2C? Millions of dead in one single climate event?

In spite of all this, the principal polluters (the countries of the
North) want to continue polluting, and in order to do so, they want to  give the Southern countries money for them to plant trees, capture the  methane from landfills or put up wind turbines. This they call carbon  trading, clean development mechanisms, joint implementation – they have plenty of creativity to continue inventing names when an intelligent and honest analysis of the problem demands an immediate halt to any  additional CO2 emissions. The problem is complicated because many  Southern countries agree with this approach, as it provides them with  funds.

On the other hand, although the historical responsibility for the  current problem lies with the industrialized countries, since they have  produced 70% of all greenhouse gases emitted since the start of the  industrial revolution (in spite of having only 17% of the global  population), the problem is that, in the last decade, the situation has  changed. Those countries called “developing countries” now emit more  than the “developed” countries. For example, China has passed the US as the world’s principal emitter of CO2.  This means that, in order to  solve the problem, the Southern countries must also embark on an  effective program of emissions reductions; this could be done if the  industrialized countries recognize their historical responsibility of  having caused the problem and provide the necessary capital and  technology to do so. Some estimates of the necessary investment run on the order of US$200 billion per year; but the industrialized world seems not to be prepared to to put in more than 10% of this amount at best; and, to make matters worse, they want the funds to be managed by the World Bank!

The final decisions will be taken in Copenhagen in one year, but  everything indicates that, if the decision makers of Northern and  Southern countries do not change their postures, we will soon face  climatic situations never before seen in the history of humanity. In the  face of this challenge, we in NGOs have a huge task to complete, at the  national and international levels.

Greetings to all, and may God and Mother Earth protect us.

Ricardo Navarro

Greenhouse Gas Bulletin

WMO Greenhouse gas bulletin
Courtesy of World Meteorological Organization (WMO)
Originally published Nov. 2008

world-climate-news-2008-june-see-page-9

[Note: On the PDF above – Page 9.  We are actually at 288 PPMV and not 281 as the report states.  This is due to the fact their reference date is 2006 and now we are 2009.  A 7 point increase.]

The latest analysis of data from the WMO-GAW Global Greenhouse Gas Monitoring Network, a comprehensive network of the Global Climate Observing System (GCOS), shows that the globally averaged mixing ratios of carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4) and nitrous oxide (N2O) have reached new highs in 2007 with CO2 at 383.1 ppm, CH4 at 1789 ppb and N2O at 320.9 ppb. These values are higher than those in pre-industrial times (before 1750) by 37%, 156% and 19%, respectively. Atmospheric growth rates in 2007 of CO2 and N2O are consistent with recent years. The mixing ratio of CH4 shows the largest increase since 1998. The NOAA Annual Greenhouse Gas Index (AGGI) shows that from 1990 to 2007 the atmospheric radiative forcing by all long-lived greenhouse gases has increased by 24.2%. The combined radiative forcing by the most abundant ozone depleting substances, CFC-11 and CFC-12, exceeds that of N2O. They are decreasing very slowly as a result of emission reductions under the Montreal Protocol on Substances That
Deplete the Ozone Layer.


For Free Access to the full article click here (pdf Format)

http://www.environmental-expert.com/resultEachArticle.aspx?cid=27116&codi=40329&loginemail=elle-provocateur@sympatico.ca&logincode=187521

WMO Greenhouse gas bulletin

WMO Greenhouse gas bulletin
Courtesy of World Meteorological Organization (WMO)
Originally published Nov. 2008

The latest analysis of data from the WMO-GAW Global Greenhouse Gas Monitoring Network, a comprehensive network of the Global Climate Observing System (GCOS), shows that the globally averaged mixing ratios of carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4) and nitrous oxide (N2O) have reached new highs in 2007 with CO2 at 383.1 ppm, CH4 at 1789 ppb and N2O at 320.9 ppb. These values are higher than those in pre-industrial times (before 1750) by 37%, 156% and 19%, respectively. Atmospheric growth rates in 2007 of CO2 and N2O are consistent with recent years. The mixing ratio of CH4 shows the largest increase since 1998. The NOAA Annual Greenhouse Gas Index (AGGI) shows that from 1990 to 2007 the atmospheric radiative forcing by all long-lived greenhouse gases has increased by 24.2%. The combined radiative forcing by the most abundant ozone depleting substances, CFC-11 and CFC-12, exceeds that of N2O. They are decreasing very slowly as a result of emission reductions under the Montreal Protocol on Substances That
Deplete the Ozone Layer.
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