RE: MD Beyond

From: David Buchanan (
Date: Sun Mar 14 2004 - 02:09:57 GMT

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    All thread followers: wrote:
    > I also don't really agree with the other sentiments of your post.
    > Earth is not in trouble. This planet is four and a half billion years
    > old. Earth has survived forces that are slightly more damaging than
    > SUVs. I can name some of them: cometary impacts, volcanic eruptions,
    > whole continents moving, violent upheavals too horrible to think of
    > witnessing--Earth survived it all. Human beings are not God. Human
    > beings can not control the weather. Ants have more of an impact on a
    > person's front yard than we do on Earth's environment.

    Leland replied:
    That has to be the biggest load of tripe I've heard in a long time.
    Excuse me, but we are wrecking the Earth. We are poisoning the air
    faster than nature can clean it. We are poisoning the water supply
    faster than nature can clean it. We are expanding into animals' habitats
    and forcing them into extinction. We're overfishing. We're overbreeding.
    It's not that what we are doing to the planet are things that it can't
    deal with. The problem is the rate at which we are doing these things.
    ...There, that's my eco-rant of the moment. That ought to last me.

    dmb says:
    I'm with Leland here. Its amazing that anyone still doubts that humanity is
    having a big impact on the enviroment. You're killing me over here. I'll let
    the following news article serve as my "eco-rant".

    Now the Pentagon tells Bush: climate change will destroy us

    Secret report warns of rioting and nuclear war
    Britain will be 'Siberian' in less than 20 years
    Threat to the world is greater than terrorism

    Mark Townsend and Paul Harris in New York
    Sunday February 22, 2004
    The Observer

    Climate change over the next 20 years could result in a global catastrophe
    costing millions of lives in wars and natural disasters..
    A secret report, suppressed by US defence chiefs and obtained by The
    Observer, warns that major European cities will be sunk beneath rising seas
    as Britain is plunged into a 'Siberian' climate by 2020. Nuclear conflict,
    mega-droughts, famine and widespread rioting will erupt across the world.

    The document predicts that abrupt climate change could bring the planet to
    the edge of anarchy as countries develop a nuclear threat to defend and
    secure dwindling food, water and energy supplies. The threat to global
    stability vastly eclipses that of terrorism, say the few experts privy to
    its contents.

    'Disruption and conflict will be endemic features of life,' concludes the
    Pentagon analysis. 'Once again, warfare would define human life.'

    The findings will prove humiliating to the Bush administration, which has
    repeatedly denied that climate change even exists. Experts said that they
    will also make unsettling reading for a President who has insisted national
    defence is a priority.

    The report was commissioned by influential Pentagon defence adviser Andrew
    Marshall, who has held considerable sway on US military thinking over the
    past three decades. He was the man behind a sweeping recent review aimed at
    transforming the American military under Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld.

    Climate change 'should be elevated beyond a scientific debate to a US
    national security concern', say the authors, Peter Schwartz, CIA consultant
    and former head of planning at Royal Dutch/Shell Group, and Doug Randall of
    the California-based Global Business Network.

    An imminent scenario of catastrophic climate change is 'plausible and would
    challenge United States national security in ways that should be considered
    immediately', they conclude. As early as next year widespread flooding by a
    rise in sea levels will create major upheaval for millions.

    Last week the Bush administration came under heavy fire from a large body of
    respected scientists who claimed that it cherry-picked science to suit its
    policy agenda and suppressed studies that it did not like. Jeremy Symons, a
    former whistleblower at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), said that
    suppression of the report for four months was a further example of the White
    House trying to bury the threat of climate change.

    Senior climatologists, however, believe that their verdicts could prove the
    catalyst in forcing Bush to accept climate change as a real and happening
    phenomenon. They also hope it will convince the United States to sign up to
    global treaties to reduce the rate of climatic change.

    A group of eminent UK scientists recently visited the White House to voice
    their fears over global warming, part of an intensifying drive to get the US
    to treat the issue seriously. Sources have told The Observer that American
    officials appeared extremely sensitive about the issue when faced with
    complaints that America's public stance appeared increasingly out of touch.

    One even alleged that the White House had written to complain about some of
    the comments attributed to Professor Sir David King, Tony Blair's chief
    scientific adviser, after he branded the President's position on the issue
    as indefensible.

    Among those scientists present at the White House talks were Professor John
    Schellnhuber, former chief environmental adviser to the German government
    and head of the UK's leading group of climate scientists at the Tyndall
    Centre for Climate Change Research. He said that the Pentagon's internal
    fears should prove the 'tipping point' in persuading Bush to accept climatic

    Sir John Houghton, former chief executive of the Meteorological Office - and
    the first senior figure to liken the threat of climate change to that of
    terrorism - said: 'If the Pentagon is sending out that sort of message, then
    this is an important document indeed.'

    Bob Watson, chief scientist for the World Bank and former chair of the
    Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, added that the Pentagon's dire
    warnings could no longer be ignored.

    'Can Bush ignore the Pentagon? It's going be hard to blow off this sort of
    document. Its hugely embarrassing. After all, Bush's single highest priority
    is national defence. The Pentagon is no wacko, liberal group, generally
    speaking it is conservative. If climate change is a threat to national
    security and the economy, then he has to act. There are two groups the Bush
    Administration tend to listen to, the oil lobby and the Pentagon,' added

    'You've got a President who says global warming is a hoax, and across the
    Potomac river you've got a Pentagon preparing for climate wars. It's pretty
    scary when Bush starts to ignore his own government on this issue,' said Rob
    Gueterbock of Greenpeace.

    Already, according to Randall and Schwartz, the planet is carrying a higher
    population than it can sustain. By 2020 'catastrophic' shortages of water
    and energy supply will become increasingly harder to overcome, plunging the
    planet into war. They warn that 8,200 years ago climatic conditions brought
    widespread crop failure, famine, disease and mass migration of populations
    that could soon be repeated.

    Randall told The Observer that the potential ramifications of rapid climate
    change would create global chaos. 'This is depressing stuff,' he said. 'It
    is a national security threat that is unique because there is no enemy to
    point your guns at and we have no control over the threat.'

    Randall added that it was already possibly too late to prevent a disaster
    happening. 'We don't know exactly where we are in the process. It could
    start tomorrow and we would not know for another five years,' he said.

    'The consequences for some nations of the climate change are unbelievable.
    It seems obvious that cutting the use of fossil fuels would be worthwhile.'

    So dramatic are the report's scenarios, Watson said, that they may prove
    vital in the US elections. Democratic frontrunner John Kerry is known to
    accept climate change as a real problem. Scientists disillusioned with
    Bush's stance are threatening to make sure Kerry uses the Pentagon report in
    his campaign.

    The fact that Marshall is behind its scathing findings will aid Kerry's
    cause. Marshall, 82, is a Pentagon legend who heads a secretive think-tank
    dedicated to weighing risks to national security called the Office of Net
    Assessment. Dubbed 'Yoda' by Pentagon insiders who respect his vast
    experience, he is credited with being behind the Department of Defence's
    push on ballistic-missile defence.

    Symons, who left the EPA in protest at political interference, said that the
    suppression of the report was a further instance of the White House trying
    to bury evidence of climate change. 'It is yet another example of why this
    government should stop burying its head in the sand on this issue.'

    Symons said the Bush administration's close links to high-powered energy and
    oil companies was vital in understanding why climate change was received
    sceptically in the Oval Office. 'This administration is ignoring the
    evidence in order to placate a handful of companies,' he added.

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