Sunday, March 4, 2012

Six Degrees

A day of activism yesterday. First off, a rally for Jim Reed (in the photo above) who is running for Congress. Jim is a homespun Democratic candidate. He has a penchant for big gaffs. A likable fella, his politics is a combination of awe shucks ranch style populism and Berkeley lawyer sophistication. He does listen to his constituents though; when he recommended raising the Shasta Dam as a public works project, he rescinded the proposal after meeting with Chico area Enviros. Then the guy went out and opposed the Keystone pipeline cause he wants to see the pipeline oil be refined in California. A bit more education is in order. However, he had a decent turnout for Chico--around 80 folks.

Then, while the girls and Joni went to see "The Lorax", I wandered around a bit and heard a lecture on climate change at Chico State.

And speaking of climate change, I also read the best book on the subject the other day: "Six Degrees" by Mark Lynas. The book, which came out in 2008, details exactly what is expected to happen at 1 degree Celsius (where we are now), two degrees Celsius and all the way up to six degrees Celsius; a separate chapter for every degree. He also documents what can be expected with a historical flare, going back in time to eras when the Earth was six degrees warmer. Scientists agree that six degrees by 2100 is more than a possibility. The news ain't good with this sort of warming.

So far we've had a pittance of warming (0.8 Celsius) with some rather graphic consequences. As I write this, an early season "swarm" of tornadoes struck the mid-west. Out here in California, we really haven't had much of a winter; our rainfall is 1/3 the normal amount (and the lowest on record) for this rainy season. It will only get worse.

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