The Top 10 Global-Warming Facts

1.  How sure?  95% that humans caused at least half the warming since 1950.

  • From the UN’s fifth (2014) report (AR5) of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
2.  How hot?  Temperature has increased 1.5° F from 1880 to 2012.(1)0.65 – 1.08°C
3.  CO2 dumping?  About 1300 tons/second into the air (as of 2013) and  rising.
4.  CO2 level?  Highest in 650,000 years. Up 40% due to industrialization.
  • Now (2014) 400 ppm(2)parts per million, up from 280 in 1750. 
5.  Sea level?  About 1 inch rise so far, but it could get serious by 2100.
6.  China?  Emits about 40% more CO2 than the US.
7.  Impact?  When Earth was 9º F cooler, ice over NY City was 2000 feet  thick.
  • There is a decent chance the Earth will get 9º F hotter by the 2100.
8.  Cost?  A 20% emission reduction is cheap: about $0.16 per person per   day.
  • Assumes a $30/ton CO2 tax would work after a few years.
  • Assumes the environmentalists do not abscond with the revenues.

9.  The problem?  US and China need to cooperate.

  • If they cooperated, it’s almost sure the Europe, Australia, Japan, and India would go along.

This election matters to global warming: See “When Mitch Rules the Senate”

10.  Why  failure?  Environmentalists use scare tactics and command & control.

  • Of course big oil and coal are a huge problem, but there is no use hoping they will change and solve the problem. So …
  • The biggest mistake has been for the rich countries to try to cap the poor countries.
  • The US and Europe tried to cap India at the level of emissions (per person) of the US sometime before 1850.
  • Contrary to environmentalists, caps are not the only way. Economists don’t even think they are the best form of commitment.

What should be done? A new plan from the best climate policy minds

Global warming requires a global solution, and that requires global cooperation. Recently the top three climate economists in the US along with the top German climate economist have aligned on a new approach (they came to this independently). It’s much simpler than the Kyoto approach, and it is designed specifically to encourage cooperation.

They have applied game theory, common sense and even used experiments to determine what type of agreement will lead to cooperation. This is completely new. It turns out that the individual caps everyone has focused on would work if everyone cooperated, but they cause disputes and destroy cooperation. This has been confirmed experimentally (and by Kyoto).

International carbon pricing results in a much stronger international treaty because it encourages cooperation. The trick is to agree on one international price of carbon, and then let countries choose a carbon cap and carbon tax or a combination of both. The World Bank is now advocating exactly this. Here’s the full story:

What you can do:

  • Link this site: on your blog, website or Facebook page.
  • Place the CO2 Widget at the right on you blog or website — serves as a link.

Why Worry?

As the deniers say, the science is unsettled. We don’t know for sure. It might not be terrible. But the same goes for your house catching fire, a terrorist attack, or a heart attack. So we take precautions and we buy insurance. Science tells us all we need to know: There’s a decent chance we are wrecking the earth. The idea that we should not spend even the 16 cents per person per day that it would take to make a good start on the problem, is not just crazy, it’s evil. Its source is the greed of big oil and big coal, although most people are honestly confused. But it’s way past time to stop and think.

References   [ + ]

1. 0.65 – 1.08°C
2. parts per million