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Old 11-27-2019, 04:13 AM
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Climate Reparations


So at this point it is well-known that major contributors to climate change, most notably Exxon, knew about climate change back in the 1970s, and were aware of the consequences. Instead of moving away from oil and gas, they doubled down, spending massive amounts of money on disinformation campaigns akin to those of tobacco companies a decade earlier. The Scientific American has the information here.

To what degree can or should Exxon (and the Koch brothers, and similar institutions which knew that they were exacerbating the climate crisis but decided to lie about it instead) be held responsible for their role in the climate crisis?

I am not a lawyer, so I cannot really speak to the "can" element of this, but in terms of "should"... Nathan J. Robinson has written about this at length in Current Affairs:
Let’s be clear about what that means: On the most basic libertarian theory of property rights, companies whose activities cause harm should legally owe compensation for that harm. Currently, there is a lot of discussion about whether the government should adopt “carbon taxes” that aim to ensure that carbon emissions are priced correctly. Up until now, carbon emissions have been a giant “externality”—a cost imposed that isn’t accounted for in market prices. (As my colleague Rob Larson has written, this market failure is a significant indictment of capitalism’s ability to find prices that accurately reflect value.) But if those who claim to respect property rights actually took property rights seriously, carbon taxes shouldn’t even be a policy “choice.” Charging companies that emit climate-destroying gases for that destruction is not optional. Not to do it would be to admit that we do not actually care about property rights, we just care about protecting the property of particular favored parties. (Namely corporations.) You shouldn’t even need to pass a tax, because greenhouse gas emitters should be sued out of existence.

So far, United States courts have not been particularly sympathetic to the case that carbon polluters owe damages for their damage. The Supreme Court has rejected attempts to sue the operators of fossil-fuel-fired power plants on the grounds that greenhouse gas emission is to be regulated by the EPA. Last year, a federal judge in San Francisco issued a fascinating opinion dismissing a claim against major fossil fuel companies like Chevron, Exxon, and Shell. The judge said that while “all parties agree that fossil fuels have led to global warming and ocean rise… the issue is a legal one—whether these producers of fossil fuels should pay for anticipated harm that will eventually flow from a rise in sea level.” (Given, of course, that these producers knew full well that these harms would result and launched massive decades-long campaigns to obscure the truth.) Because of my sincere commitment to basic property rights, I find it peculiar that this should even be a question: Given that we know Action X causes Property Damage Y, should those who knowingly take Action X have to pay for Property Damage Y? Of course they should. How could the issue possibly be resolved differently? If all parties agree that the harm is being caused by the companies, then the companies need to pay for the harm, period.
Personally, I think that this is a slam-dunk case for companies like Exxon and Koch Industries to be held responsible for the damage they knew their products would cause to the environment. Furthermore, given the sheer breadth of the harm in this case, I think that it is entirely reasonable to hold individuals and/or broad swathes of the leadership at such companies personally criminally responsible for their actions, perhaps under a "crimes against humanity" suit.

I'm sure there's also an interesting debate to be had over whether such the countries that host such companies (predominately rich, western companies) owe reparations for the harm caused to the countries most negatively effected by climate change (predominately poor, equatorial countries).

Last edited by Budget Player Cadet; 11-27-2019 at 04:14 AM.
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Old 11-27-2019, 08:12 AM
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It seems sensible to me for polluters to pay for the damage, but this is where the climate change deniers get fuel for their claims that climate change action is all about wealth redistribution. Charging them with crimes against humanity seems like a step too far. I don't need to see oil tycoons hang, I just want the planet to not warm up too much. I think it is fair for the polluters to pay the predominate costs to ensure this doesn't happen. And that includes me*. I'm a citizen of Canada. Canada, like most of the West, has greatly benefited from cheap energy to grow. I am personally in some way responsible for the damage done to the planet. So yes, I have to pay.
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Old 11-27-2019, 08:53 AM
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Charging them with crimes against humanity seems like a step too far. I don't need to see oil tycoons hang, I just want the planet to not warm up too much.
Honestly?

I do. I want to see them hang. I want to see Charles Koch, Lawrence G. Rawl, and all of their ilk suffer and die for what they've done. I think that the degree of injustice perpetrated upon all of us by rich men who sold our future down the river in order to maintain and grow their already-obscene opulence (make no mistake, the responsible parties here are all rich beyond the wildest dreams of avarice) is both extreme and unforgivable. We're looking at something like hundreds of thousands of deaths per year directly attributable to climate change. It's slow-moving mass murder. The fact that these men will likely die of old age, surrounded by their ill-gotten gains in a level of comfort the rest of us can only dream of makes my brain go to some very dark places. But beyond my own personal psyche (no points for guessing my brain is all kinds of fucked up), it also sets a precedent - if you commit ecocide for profit, you don't get to live off your spoils, you get convicted, imprisoned, and probably killed by those you hurt.
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Old 11-27-2019, 01:53 PM
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Maybe if you hadn't gladly gobbled up their products over the years the position might be more convincing. If we stopped all O&G operations today the result would be immediate death and destruction.
We could go after their owners, you know, the retirees and pension funds and other institutional investors who own ExxonMobil. Or we could recognize and tax the externalities, as ExxonMobil supports.
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Old 11-27-2019, 02:14 PM
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The scientific community knew about global warming before any company did. Since the scientific community is mostly funded by the government, it's clear the government also knew about global warming back then--but the government did nothing about it.

As to the oil companies doing harm note that the vast overwhelming majority of the harm is done by the consumers of this oil companies--in other words virtually all businesses and individuals when they burned the fuel.
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Old 11-27-2019, 02:20 PM
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Honestly?

I do. I want to see them hang. I want to see Charles Koch, Lawrence G. Rawl, and all of their ilk suffer and die for what they've done. ...
This is disturbing.
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Old 11-27-2019, 02:55 PM
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I'm sure there's also an interesting debate to be had over whether such the countries that host such companies (predominately rich, western companies) owe reparations for the harm caused to the countries most negatively effected by climate change (predominately poor, equatorial countries).
China is responsible for emitting almost as much CO2 as North America and Europe combined. The Chinese government has chosen to build an enormous number of new coal power plants over the past two decades and intends to continue doing so. So if you're upset about climate change, blame a communist. (If the "Extinction Rebellion" crowd and Greta Thunberg actually cared about climate change, they would be protesting in Beijing, or at least in front of Chinese embassies.)

Beyond that, there's another fundamental flaw in the argument. Exxon and other companies don't produce oil because they're run by James Bond villain types who sit around stroking white cats, feeding underlings to piranhas, and plotting how to make the world worse. Instead, they produce oil because oil makes the world better, and thus billions of people all over the world want to purchase oil, and thus it is profitable to produce oil.

Let's suppose, just for the sake of argument, that on some day in, say, 1995, the CEO Exxon had decided that the company would stop drilling for oil, pumping oil, refining oil, and selling oil. What would have happened?

Well, first and most self-evidently, the board of directors would have ousted the CEO and replaced him with someone who would go back to drilling, pumping, refining, and selling oil. So the decision would have been pointless.

But beyond that, even if the Exxon corporation had actually stopped producing oil in 1995, then other oil corporations would have increased their production to meet demand. Because people all over the world would have still been demanding oil. So still, the amount of oil produced would have been roughly the same.
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Old 11-27-2019, 03:07 PM
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The "China is responsible.." thing? It is like saying "Why should I put out my own house fire when my neighbor's house fire is so much worse?"
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Old 11-27-2019, 03:24 PM
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Honestly?

I do. I want to see them hang. I want to see Charles Koch, Lawrence G. Rawl, and all of their ilk suffer and die for what they've done.
I'm not sure that I'd enjoy watching them hang as much if I'm in the process of trying to keep my head above water from a flood. Or running from a fire.
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Old 11-27-2019, 03:40 PM
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Honestly?

I do. I want to see them hang. I want to see Charles Koch, Lawrence G. Rawl, and all of their ilk suffer and die for what they've done. I think that the degree of injustice perpetrated upon all of us by rich men who sold our future down the river in order to maintain and grow their already-obscene opulence (make no mistake, the responsible parties here are all rich beyond the wildest dreams of avarice) is both extreme and unforgivable. We're looking at something like hundreds of thousands of deaths per year directly attributable to climate change. It's slow-moving mass murder. The fact that these men will likely die of old age, surrounded by their ill-gotten gains in a level of comfort the rest of us can only dream of makes my brain go to some very dark places. But beyond my own personal psyche (no points for guessing my brain is all kinds of fucked up), it also sets a precedent - if you commit ecocide for profit, you don't get to live off your spoils, you get convicted, imprisoned, and probably killed by those you hurt.
I disagree and a few others have posted reasons why I would disagree so I won't repeat them.

But let's say I did agree. Even under that circumstance, I would still think this is a bad idea. You have to pick your battles, and have a priority. Hanging a few oil tycoons isn't going to change people's behavior. It probably wouldn't even change oil tycoons behavior. The goal for climate change action needs to be focused on keeping warming to a minimum, and to do that we need people's behavior to change.

I cannot to the level of trying to go after the companies criminally. It just doesn't make sense to me. Hit them in the pocketbook, to most of them their bank accounts are their scorecards anyway.
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Old 11-27-2019, 05:52 PM
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Maybe we should just hang anyone that's ever bought a fuel or plastic made from petroleum in the past 50 years. After all the "oil tycoons" wouldn't pump it if people weren't buying, and if you look at narcotics or prostitution it's just as illegal to buy as to sell.

Realistically if we hanged the oil tycoons, the world would keep buying petroleum products just as fast as the replacement tycoons can pump it out of the ground. And will continue to do so until we have viable replacements for it. So maybe investing in Tesla is better than hanging the oil tycoons.
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Old 11-27-2019, 07:53 PM
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The scientific community knew about global warming before any company did. Since the scientific community is mostly funded by the government, it's clear the government also knew about global warming back then--but the government did nothing about it.
I would need to see a citation to support this claim.
"Scientists", whoever they may be, have been studying climate change for many decades. However, reports from scientists within Exxon, Mobile, Shell, and other companies have been reported going back to the 1960s. I am not aware of any reports from schools or government agencies that actually precede those from the petroleum companies.

Before we start hanging people, I think we should discover who knew what when and how much energy they invested in suppressing the information.

Last edited by tomndebb; 11-27-2019 at 07:57 PM.
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Old 11-27-2019, 07:56 PM
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Moderating


Budget Player Cadet, wishing harm or death on people is not a good thing and serves no purpose in a discussion forum except to demonstrate personal feelings.
Please ratchet down the rhetoric.

[ /Moderating ]

Last edited by tomndebb; 11-27-2019 at 07:57 PM.
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Old 11-27-2019, 07:59 PM
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I don't know man it's really just more fun to kill hippies and free spirits than oil magnates. It's like eating veal.
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Old 11-27-2019, 09:08 PM
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The "China is responsible.." thing? It is like saying "Why should I put out my own house fire when my neighbor's house fire is so much worse?"
No it's not.
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Old 11-27-2019, 09:45 PM
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Honestly?

I do. I want to see them hang. I want to see Charles Koch, Lawrence G. Rawl, and all of their ilk suffer and die for what they've done.....
And with this, there no longer a debate, just a rant.
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Old 11-27-2019, 11:51 PM
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The "China is responsible.." thing? It is like saying "Why should I put out my own house fire when my neighbor's house fire is so much worse?"
China has not only vastly surpassed other countries in CO2 emissions, they continue to increase them while others decrease them (and so does India for that matter), so right now focus on reducing CO2 emissions should be on those that are not reducing them but doing the opposite.

The OPs plan, besides being bad in many other ways would punish countries who are doing the right thing and in effect benefit (by increasing their competitiveness) those doing the most damage now.

That is to say, your analogy is flawed, the situation now is that there's a fire under control (Western industrial nations) and there's one out of control and spreading (China and other developing countries), so of course more effort is needed in the one that represents a bigger present and future threat.
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Old 11-28-2019, 05:44 AM
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The thing is though, how can we (i.e. the 'western' world) insist China, India et al cut their carbon emissions without appearing massively hypocritical? I mean, our societies have benefited enormously from cheap energy over the last 150 years or so - who are we to deny them the same opportunity? I'm not denying it's a problem, I just don't see we have any moral high ground here.
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Old 11-28-2019, 07:35 AM
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The thing is though, how can we (i.e. the 'western' world) insist China, India et al cut their carbon emissions without appearing massively hypocritical? I mean, our societies have benefited enormously from cheap energy over the last 150 years or so - who are we to deny them the same opportunity? I'm not denying it's a problem, I just don't see we have any moral high ground here.
For the vast majority of the that time the societies involved were not aware of the impact of their actions in regards to AGW, places like China more than doubled IIRC their carbon emissions during the last 20 or so years, if it's about morality then where is the morality on doing something known to be harmful in full knowledge of the consequences?, because if the idea is to punish those doing such a things doing it retroactively, and selectively ignoring the current worst offenders then it evidently the point of the exercise has less to do with environmental considerations and more with some other agendas.

This is similar to Greta Thunberg's lawsuit, where she scolds and seeks to punish the countries that are currently flat lining or reducing their CO2 emissions while ignoring the ones who are increasing them now and in the foreseeable future.

You should take a look at the graph in the link I posted before and you will plainly see where the problems lie today in regards to CO2 emissions.

In any case that line of argumentation can just as well be used to justify other things, "well you prospered in the past with the use of slaves/without labour laws/exploiting colonies, etc, etc. So why can't we make use of slavery, abuse workers and colonize and plunder foreign lands now?"
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Old 11-28-2019, 08:02 AM
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Fair points, thank you. I am not seeking to deny there is a problem or where it largely lies. But, I can see why the Chinese and Indian governments might choose to ignore western pressure to make changes. Not that that makes it right, of course.

Where we can go wrong is by saying "fuck it, they're much worse than us so we're not going to take any steps to sort our own nations out", i.e. like Czarcasm's analogy, flawed as it may be. I wouldn't go so far as to support the OP of this thread, but let's do what we can and pressure others to do the same.
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Old 11-28-2019, 12:31 PM
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Note that the Op has been wished into the cornfield.
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Old 11-29-2019, 02:20 PM
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Translators of Hebrew biblical texts into Koine Greek simplified some concepts. Herbalists, jugglers, diviners, were all labeled "witches". A certain well-known passage should read, "Thou shalt not allow a poisoner to live." Moving that from the personal to the corporate, polluting firms should be nationalized and restructured - not left to live as it is. Sure, jailing or otherwise severely punishing corporate directors and managers would be entertaining. But don't expect a Koch perp-walk anytime soon.
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Old 11-29-2019, 06:53 PM
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. So maybe investing in Tesla is better than hanging the oil tycoons.
Tesla's Electric Cars Aren't as Green as You Might Think

https://www.wired.com/2016/03/teslas...t-green-think/
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Old 11-29-2019, 08:46 PM
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China has not only vastly surpassed other countries in CO2 emissions, they continue to increase them while others decrease them.... (and so does India for that matter), so right now focus on reducing CO2 emissions....
.
There is a debate if CO2 emissions should be counted by the total geography of a country or per capita. If you look at per capita, Saudi Arabia has the most followed closely by USA. China is way far behind based on per capita. India is even further behind. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List...ons_per_capita

There’s also debate if the sum total of CO2 emissions per country since the Industrial revolution needs to be added up when arriving at global contributions.
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Old 11-29-2019, 10:55 PM
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There is a debate if CO2 emissions should be counted by the total geography of a country or per capita. If you look at per capita, Saudi Arabia has the most followed closely by USA. China is way far behind based on per capita. India is even further behind. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List...ons_per_capita

There’s also debate if the sum total of CO2 emissions per country since the Industrial revolution needs to be added up when arriving at global contributions.
what is the point of using per capita numbers for China? You can cut their air with a knife.
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Old 11-29-2019, 11:33 PM
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what is the point of using per capita numbers for China? You can cut their air with a knife.
Not sure what you mean by that. I thought we were talking CO2 emissions.

The concentration of CO2 geographically varies between 391 and 402 ppm. Cite : https://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/im...carbon-dioxide

Sure China is on the higher end, but so are parts of the US too.
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Old 11-30-2019, 03:12 PM
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The "China is responsible.." thing? It is like saying "Why should I put out my own house fire when my neighbor's house fire is so much worse?"
Except it's more like 'The city is burning, and the responsible party is burning fires in other cities, but let's blame this guy who's house is on fire instead!'. Because, the reality is China burns MORE CO2 than the US and EU combined...in fact, possibly more than the rest of the world combine. And, if that's not enough, they aren't just building new coal fired plants in China...they are building them in a bunch of other countries.

Is China solely responsible? Nope. But they get a pass around here so often that it's sickening...and not just on this board. No idea why folks just handwave away the shit they do on either the human rights side or the environmental side, but it gets old. I note the OP has been banned, but I also note that not ONE FUCKING WORD WAS SAID ABOUT CHINA. The OP wanted to string up mainly US companies and their CEOs...and, basically, one poster called out the CCP as it should be.
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Old 12-03-2019, 03:38 PM
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So at this point it is well-known that major contributors to climate change, most notably Exxon, knew about climate change back in the 1970s, and were aware of the consequences. Instead of moving away from oil and gas, they doubled down, spending massive amounts of money on disinformation campaigns akin to those of tobacco companies a decade earlier. The Scientific American has the information here.

To what degree can or should Exxon (and the Koch brothers, and similar institutions which knew that they were exacerbating the climate crisis but decided to lie about it instead) be held responsible for their role in the climate crisis?
They did not drive all those cars. They did not use all that energy.

We've known about global warming since the 1980s but no one wanted to do anything about it. Frankly they still don't, not if it means drastically cutting down on energy use.

We will not sue our way out of this problem. We will have to science our way out.
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Old 12-03-2019, 04:20 PM
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The thing is though, how can we (i.e. the 'western' world) insist China, India et al cut their carbon emissions without appearing massively hypocritical? I mean, our societies have benefited enormously from cheap energy over the last 150 years or so - who are we to deny them the same opportunity? I'm not denying it's a problem, I just don't see we have any moral high ground here.
China, India, and darn near every place on the planet has had cars, trains, electricity and whatever else for the last 100 years or more. It's not like just 20 years ago the first car drove thru Bejing. Now maybe in some countries and some areas it wasnt until close to the 40's but most major cities and world capitals have gone modern for a long time.

So that means we are all in this together and share equal responsibility.
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Old 12-03-2019, 04:49 PM
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They did not drive all those cars. They did not use all that energy.

We've known about global warming since the 1980s but no one wanted to do anything about it. Frankly they still don't, not if it means drastically cutting down on energy use.

We will not sue our way out of this problem. We will have to science our way out.
Past history shows (like in the tobacco and cancer case) that change does require a combination of lawsuits after the science was clear. Then science does help with the consequences, but it is silly to leave the ones that knew early about how they were polluting the environment to get off the hook regarding the costs.

This is because the deployment of the solutions will not be cheap, and it is clear that if the "leadership" that we have remains a conservative one, then the obvious result will be "solutions" that ignore the very scientists who they disparaged for so long; because one will need lots of real climate experts and real computer modelers to check if any geoengineering solutions are viable. If the leaders we get are still following industry lackeys, then the results will not be pretty.

Last edited by GIGObuster; 12-03-2019 at 04:53 PM.
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Old 12-03-2019, 05:42 PM
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China, India, and darn near every place on the planet has had cars, trains, electricity and whatever else for the last 100 years or more. It's not like just 20 years ago the first car drove thru Bejing. Now maybe in some countries and some areas it wasnt until close to the 40's but most major cities and world capitals have gone modern for a long time.

So that means we are all in this together and share equal responsibility.
I disagree with this. It's not true that most non-industrial countries, including China, were major contributors to GhG emissions, especially from automobiles, unless we are just talking the last 20 years. Before that, they weren't because they couldn't be...they simply didn't have the infrastructure or wealth to have a large enough number of cars TOO cause problems.

The trouble is, now, today, China specifically gets a pass. And that's total bullshit. They aren't an emerging power. They aren't developing. And they pollute more than the US and EU combined wrt CO2 emissions....and they are rising, not dropping or even stabilizing. Worse, it's not even just in China...they are building coal powered plants in many, many other countries. They are exporting their rising CO2 emissions.

We are all in this, no doubt. The US certainly gets the lions share of the blame by everyone, and has in fact contributed a lot more to the problem. But the US is actually, despite our idiot president, slowly lowering our emissions. We could do a lot more, but we are doing something. China isn't...they are going full speed ahead. And if we are going to play the blame game I would like to see people acknowledge that right now, today, China is the main problem wrt global emissions, and that the problem is getting worse every year as they ramp up their emissions AND export them. Like I said in my earlier post, it's fucking ridiculous that no one calls them out in threads like this and the the fucking OP didn't even mention them. And that gets a pass. Fuck that.
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Old 12-03-2019, 09:08 PM
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We are all in this, no doubt. The US certainly gets the lions share of the blame by everyone, and has in fact contributed a lot more to the problem. But the US is actually, despite our idiot president, slowly lowering our emissions. We could do a lot more, but we are doing something. China isn't...they are going full speed ahead. And if we are going to play the blame game I would like to see people acknowledge that right now, today, China is the main problem wrt global emissions, and that the problem is getting worse every year as they ramp up their emissions AND export them. Like I said in my earlier post, it's fucking ridiculous that no one calls them out in threads like this and the the fucking OP didn't even mention them. And that gets a pass. Fuck that.


Actually many that I know do take China to task, just because one does notice progress, it does not mean that they get a pass; on the contrary, many do ask for better efforts, although if we had a better leader in place more pressure regarding more change from countries like China could be possible.

As for still doing something with "our idiot president"; no, there no buts when a dolt is at the helm:

https://psmag.com/environment/u-s-em...ng-under-trump
Quote:
U.S. Emissions Are Rising Under Trump
The Trump administration has been systematically rolling back environmental regulations, and now carbon emissions are up across every sector in America.
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Old 12-04-2019, 09:57 AM
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just because one does notice progress,
I noticed that they were up 4% in the first HALF of 2019. And these are both coming from the OFFICIAL stats the CCP puts out, so massive grain of salt. You are STILL handwaving and excusing them with shit like this.

Quote:
although if we had a better leader in place more pressure regarding more change from countries like China could be possible.
I agree we need a better leader. But whoever our leader is, no one can force China to do what the CCP doesn't want to do. They talk about what they might do, and folks eat it up. But the reality is that their CO2 emissions are going up steadily, year by year, by large amounts...and, again, this is from their official (which means bullshit) statistics. Unofficially it might be as much as double what they are reporting. AND, to put the cherry on top, China is building many, many coal plants (the world 'hundreds' is tossed around) for other countries as part of their belt and road. That CO2, of course, isn't counted towards China, though it should be. Feel free to show me how many the US or EU are building in other countries. I couldn't find any, but I'm sure there must be a few.

As for the rise in US emissions, according to this it rose (slightly) in 2018, but is projected to drop in 2019 and 2020. Maybe it will, maybe it won't...but I can tell you, it won't freaking rise 4% in the first half of this year!

I'm not saying the US shouldn't get dinged. It DID rise after all, and I'd say that putting the blame on Trump is warranted. He's a fucking idiot. But notice how you immediately went for a cite that seemed to show China is actually doing really well (headline "China may peak up to a decade earlier than the nation has pledged under the Paris Agreement, according to a new study"), while the reality is much, much different. And in both cases, neither is using the ACTUAL figures, because, well, the CCP doesn't give those out. So everything has to be extrapolated. Even using their bullshit figures, it's up, however.
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Last edited by XT; 12-04-2019 at 09:59 AM.
  #34  
Old 12-04-2019, 11:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by XT View Post
I noticed that they were up 4% in the first HALF of 2019. And these are both coming from the OFFICIAL stats the CCP puts out, so massive grain of salt. You are STILL handwaving and excusing them with shit like this.
Well thanks for doing what many fail to do, as in checking the cites; of course, then the other point was spectacularly missed, just like in the previous cites, I’m not hand waving what the Chinese do since I do expect others to check the cites, so drop that inaccuracy.

Quote:
Originally Posted by XT View Post
I agree we need a better leader. But whoever our leader is, no one can force China to do what the CCP doesn't want to do.
Well that reminded me of a past item regarding China from a past debate. You actually did hand wave about the pollution reporting in the capital of China and other cities coming from American Embassies and consulates. What you missed there was an actual example of not excusing China for what it was doing and that there are ways indeed to make China do the proper thing. (It should not be needed, but one has to remark here that still more needs to be done.. that should not be needed to be remarked, but in this case it is needed to be said because more silly remarks about leaving China off the hook are bound to follow, it seems.)

https://www.wired.com/2015/03/opinio...ted-clear-air/
Quote:
When the US Embassy in Beijing started tweeting data from an air-quality monitor, no one could have anticipated its far-reaching consequences: It triggered profound change in China's environmental policy, advanced air-quality science in some of the world’s most polluted cities, and prompted similar efforts in neighboring countries.



In 2008, everyone knew Beijing was polluted, but we didn't know how much. That year, the US Embassy in Beijing installed a rooftop air-quality monitor that cost the team about as much as a nice car. The device began automatically tweeting out data every hour to inform US citizens of the pollution’s severity

In 2010, it became official: Beijing’s air quality was deemed "crazy bad" by the Embassy when the pollution exceeded the bounds of the EPA's air quality index. This inadvertently undiplomatic tweet reached a growing audience via third-party apps that circumvented China’s twitter firewall. People were attracted by the reliability of the Embassy’s data, which helped them make daily decisions—whether it was safe to let their children play outside, for example.
This data often painted a bleaker picture than did the Chinese official pronouncements. Beijing residents, dissatisfied with the crudeness of China's air quality monitoring efforts, put pressure on Chinese officials to acknowledge the scale of the problem and start taking proactive measures to tackle it.

At first, the Chinese government pushed back and pressured the Embassy to stop releasing the data, saying that “such readings were illegal”. Fortunately, the Embassy stood its ground. Eventually, the Chinese government relented and began implementing an effective monitoring system of its own. By the beginning of 2013, it had succeeded in setting up around 500 PM2.5 stations in over 70 cities. Later that year, completing its about-face, China pledged hundreds of billions of dollars for cleaning the air and began to implement pollution reduction targets for major cities
Quote:
Originally Posted by XT View Post
They talk about what they might do, and folks eat it up.
Again, no.

Quote:
Originally Posted by XT View Post
But the reality is that their CO2 emissions are going up steadily, year by year, by large amounts...and, again, this is from their official (which means bullshit) statistics. Unofficially it might be as much as double what they are reporting. AND, to put the cherry on top, China is building many, many coal plants (the world 'hundreds' is tossed around) for other countries as part of their belt and road. That CO2, of course, isn't counted towards China, though it should be. Feel free to show me how many the US or EU are building in other countries. I couldn't find any, but I'm sure there must be a few.

As for the rise in US emissions, according to this it rose (slightly) in 2018, but is projected to drop in 2019 and 2020. Maybe it will, maybe it won't...but I can tell you, it won't freaking rise 4% in the first half of this year!
Since there are no ways to prevent the yahoo from dropping more regulations (and the Republicans are complicit on this too), the most likely thing is to expect a rise in the USA.

As pointed before, what China is doing is not good; but the accords that were made do acknowledge that we can not go cold turkey or back to the stone age as many right wingers like to claim that environmentalists want all to do. Since that is not the case, pressure needs to continue and looking at the big picture China’s emissions are actually not growing much now, China is still then more likely to hit their accorded targets ahead of schedule.

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-c...-idUSKCN1VQ1K0

And again, trust but verify, and continue the pressure for them to do it even better. > and again yet another item where there should be no need to remark that, but it needs to be over here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by XT View Post
I'm not saying the US shouldn't get dinged. It DID rise after all, and I'd say that putting the blame on Trump is warranted. He's a fucking idiot. But notice how you immediately went for a cite that seemed to show China is actually doing really well (headline "China may peak up to a decade earlier than the nation has pledged under the Paris Agreement, according to a new study"), while the reality is much, much different. And in both cases, neither is using the ACTUAL figures, because, well, the CCP doesn't give those out. So everything has to be extrapolated. Even using their bullshit figures, it's up, however.
However, the reality is that thanks to past pressure, there are more accurate numbers than before. This does not deny anything that was pointed out before, only that you seem to fall for the echoes of the denier conservative media narrative that is now reaching for bogus criticisms such as 'You proponents of change are giving the Chinese a break" when that is not the case.

Last edited by GIGObuster; 12-04-2019 at 11:59 AM.
  #35  
Old 12-04-2019, 12:28 PM
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One more item I forgot, that very passive/aggressive move by the US embassy took place during the Obama days.

Had the current Agent Orange been president then it is more likely that he would had folded like zhezhi. (That is how the Chinese call the art of paper folding that in Japanese is referred as Origami)
  #36  
Old 12-10-2019, 06:18 PM
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If the info on global warming had been made fully public in 1960, what different course of action would we have taken as a nation?
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