The Climate Two Step

More caution needed on climate change, scientists say.

If news were like music that sets the tempo of public opinion, the latest spate of climate change headlines is tapping out something like a two-step. One step closer to certainty, then the music reels toward denialism; Inspiring, if brief, performances by grassroots activists, flanked by the chorus line of corporate sponsorships and murky backroom dealings.

Last week the world’s leading scientific authority on global warming, the United Nation’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, issued a report linking extreme weather to climate change and urged governments around the world to step up their efforts for dealing with “climate extremes.” The same day U.S. Congress  killed plans for a national climate agency.

Months of protesting the Keystone pipeline led to a postponement that could provide bureaucratic deathblow to the project. But it turns out that defeating the pipeline will not keep the Canadian tar sands from flowing to refineries via other routes, including the millions of miles of existing U.S. pipelines that already transport — and sometimes spill — the particularly gooey and toxic fossil fuel.

The Sierra Club‘s longtime leader Carl Pope has finally stepped down amid what the Los Angeles Times said was “discontent that the group founded by 19th century wilderness evangelist John Muir has compromised its core principles.” Pope’s replacement, Michael Brune, declared “done” the $1.3 million sponsorship deal Pope had championed with the makers of Clorox  bleach. Brune vowed to never again risk sullying the venerable institution’s reputation by shilling for another corporate polluter. Having been one of those who criticized the Sierra Club’s Clorox deal, it’s good to see the new leadership heeding concerns about greenwashing. But virtually all of the the country’s other flagship environmental groups are beholden to corporate “sponsors” and “partners” today, as the recent greenwashing scandals involving  World Wildlife Fund and the National Park Foundation and their corporate sponsor, the Coke-a-Cola Co, atest.


About greendistrict

I'm Christine MacDonald, a journalist and the author of the book: "Green, Inc., An Environmental Insider Reveals How a Good Cause Has Gone B

Posted on November 21, 2011, in Activism, Carbon footprint, Climate adaptation, Climate Change, Climate Deniers, Climate politics, Corporate Citizenship, Corporate Social Responsiblity, Environment, environmental justice, Global Warming, Green Inc., Green Living, National Politics, sustainability, Washington, World. Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. Pretty much everyone realizes that the IPCC report last week was designed to bolster attention for the Durban meeting next week. They claim to be unbiased but they demonstrate thier bias by releasing their report just before the Durban meeting. They have shot themseves in the foot again.

    What an incompetent organization.

    Even with the release of their report and the flurry of climate alarmist papers coming out now, Durban summit will still be the biggest failure of the all.

    I can’t wait for Durban. Lol!


  2. True, but after fighting climate alarmism since 2007, seeing skeptic opinions deleted on blogs, seeing skeptics ignored by the media, seeing science magazines treat skeptic scientists like fringe lunatics, being called holocaust deniers or on the payroll of big oil, hearing the IPCC claim to be a scientific organization when it is a political one and now watching climate alarmism completly fail in such a public way, It’s just so gratifying.

    There is also the entertainment factor to consider; We get to watch the same paid climate protesters get arrested again like we saw last year, and we might even see an ‘Occupy Durban’ protest this year. Wahoo!

    If Al Gore shows up, it will probably snow.

    Got my beer and popcorn ready. This is going to be great.


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