September 14th, 2012
07:00 AM ET

Opinion: Common sense choices can fight climate change

Editor's note: Juan Sostheim is owner and founder of Rancho Margot, an eco-resort, educational facility and sustainable farm in Costa Rica. Sostheim is the subject of Sunday's episode of "The Next List," on CNN at 2 p.m. ET.

By Juan Sostheim, Special to CNN

(CNN) - Almost 40 years have gone by since I graduated from the University of Florida and started my professional career. I remember being relieved that the Vietnam War was nearly over and the threat of someone pushing "the button" and starting a nuclear war was becoming an unlikely scenario.

As terrible as these issues were, we always felt that we could somehow it behind us.

Today, we face a very different problem and it’s one which most people feel powerless to do something about on an individual level. I’m referring to climate change.

There have always been and will always be naysayers, but no one can stay on the sidelines and hope someone else will do the right thing. We all must become eco-literate. We all must participate.

In the scientific community, there is no doubt about where we are heading and what is causing it. There is some legitimate debate about how long the devastation due to climate change will take, how much damage we can expect or where, but the situation as a whole is clear; global warming is real and if we don’t change, life will forever be different. I’m an optimist and I know we can change. We must adapt and mitigate but most important of all we must let everyone know where we stand or it will continue to be business as usual.

When I built Rancho Margot, an eco-resort in Costa Rica, I had to make choices. I wanted to have the smallest possible environmental impact - but at the same time I needed to get tourists to come and support what we were doing. How was I going to sell my vision to people who don't believe in climate change? My mission became to get people to realize that small changes in lifestyle can have a big impact. There is no need to sacrifice.

So what is it that we as individuals can do? First and foremost, we must demand that the true cost of all products and services be visible for all to see. This is only possible if we demand that carbon footprints be measured under strict international norms. At Rancho Margot, we chose the PAS 2060 norms from the British Institute of Standards. We emit 115 tons of carbon dioxide per year and, through our mitigation efforts, sequester 1,375 tons. That means we had a minus-1,260-ton carbon footprint in 2011. As consumers, we need to demand this information.

Forget, for the moment, the global picture. This is about us. I want to know how much carbon we emit. I need to know. If this is not consumer protection, I don’t know what is. In the UK, all public companies are now required to report and certify their carbon footprint. It’s a start. It is a slow process and we have little time. In the absence of this consumer protection we need to make common sense choices. We can buy locally produced fruits and vegetables. We can buy quality that lasts and things that can be locally repaired. We need to stop supporting our own destruction. There is a whole sustainable future out there and it’s up to us.

The opinions expressed in this post are solely those of Juan Sostheim.

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soundoff (132 Responses)
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  5. ODD

    why is it that NPR and Forbes are publishing facts about the Antarctic sea ice setting another record this past week, with the most amount of ice ever recorded?

    September 20, 2012 at 7:03 am | Reply
  6. my4sons

    shameful of you Ken B – is that what you took away from the article? one can only hope that through this man's kind and caring spirit, and maybe a bit of osmosis, that folks like you will get a whopper dose of humility to quiet your out of control ego. try listening to others with your eyes closed and maybe your heart will get the real message – we can ALL make small and painless steps to heal and save our beloved planet.

    September 17, 2012 at 10:12 am | Reply
  7. Svdb

    I find it somewhat strange that people need a reason like climate change (caused by humans) in order to feel the need to change our way of life. Why not just change because it's not a healthy or considerate thing to just carelessly romp around on earth? The people who insist on their right to "romp" remind me of a selfish, greedy, & awful child from Southpark: Eric Cartman. In one of the older episodes of the show, he keeps saying, "Whatever! I do what I want!" Striking resemblance between the two...
    I recently stayed at Rancho Margot & I really appreciate that Juan (and all of the workers) are making such strides to share their experience with the world. They are already making a difference by showing people realistic ways to live more in line with nature, regardless of your feelings/opinions on climate change.

    September 16, 2012 at 2:57 pm | Reply
  8. Incredulus

    Perhaps the most telling story is about a physicist at Berkeley who did not believe that humans affect the climate. The libertarian nonbelievers paid him to show that he was right. Unfortunately for the K brothers, he and almost all of his nonbeliever team came to believe that humans affect the climate. They approached the question from a different direction than climate scientists and got the same conclusions about global warming.

    September 16, 2012 at 2:52 pm | Reply
    • Dave123

      Actually, all he did was a somewhat different statistical techique to come up with same result. The leading climate scientists say that Muller has caught up to climate science in the 1990s...and they'r wondering when he'll come forward another 20 years.

      September 16, 2012 at 3:43 pm | Reply
  9. 21k

    global warming won't be prevented, the gop will see to that. but the effects of gw will be dealt with. once rich gop's like rush start to lose their shoreline mansions, they will expect big, bad gub'mint to bail them out with fema funds to replace their value. so the top 1% will again vacuum more money for services out of the rest of our retirement funds, and some future gop president will sign off. enjoy the endless summer!

    September 16, 2012 at 2:44 pm | Reply
    • Arnold Ziffel

      Clueless dolt.

      September 16, 2012 at 2:59 pm | Reply
  10. Mavrik

    We need to address climate change, but no matter what we in the US do on this we are still screwed because there are 1.3 billion Chinese who want to have the same lifestyle that we have. They will build a hundreds of coal fired power plants over the next decade to accomplish this.

    September 16, 2012 at 2:41 pm | Reply
  11. Jersey Boy

    While I applaud this effort and environmental conservation in general, I seriously question the claim of sustainability. How can an endeavor featuring so many volunteers be considered sustainable? Not to mention all the non-sustainable capital being brought into this “off the grid” operation by guests employed in the “regular”, non-sustainable outside world? A step in the right direction, definitely. Sustainable: Not so sure?

    September 16, 2012 at 2:37 pm | Reply
  12. libs_r_evil

    I truly believe climate change is happening, BUT MAN IS NOT CAUSING IT!!!!! 2 simple questions can put this all to rest, but the "believers" will dismiss it as here say. 1. What caused the ice ages the earth has seen throughout its existence? 2. What ended each one of those ice ages?

    September 16, 2012 at 2:10 pm | Reply
    • Tom Steadman

      Mr. libs r evil: You are confusing a process that takes tens of thousands of years with one that is occuring over a matter of decades. I suggest that you enrol in the nearest community college and take some courses in atmospheric science, and of course, discontinue watching FOX News.

      September 16, 2012 at 2:23 pm | Reply
      • Troy Patrick Brown

        Thank you Mr. Steadman your point is well taken. This is very important!

        September 16, 2012 at 2:36 pm |
      • JetPro

        Record trmps....

        September 16, 2012 at 2:41 pm |
      • Arnold Ziffel

        Record temps over the last 150 years. Fine. What about the temps in 648 BC? The earth's climate is not static but constantly changing.

        September 16, 2012 at 3:01 pm |
    • churflap

      Saying that because earth has always naturally experienced climate change we couldn't possibly be causing it right now, is kind of like saying that if I stab you in the chest and you die I must not have caused it because people have always died naturally.

      September 16, 2012 at 2:24 pm | Reply
      • pn

        Are you trying to appeal to logic? That's not going to work with this crowd. They have their talking points and will stick to them.

        September 16, 2012 at 2:30 pm |
    • pooh2

      I do not know what caused the ice ages and I do not want to venture into guessing it. Being being part of the scientific community myself (although in a different field), and knowing how we operate, I can assure you that the questions you are raising in your mail have been investigated thousand times over. Gigabytes of measurement results have been searched through and thoroughly analyzed. Various formulas and hypotheses were coma red with each other. Believing that the questions that you ask were not investigated is like believing that a professional baseball player cannot throw a ball straight. I ask for your pardon, but it just sounds extremely childish.

      September 16, 2012 at 2:34 pm | Reply
    • Dan, TX

      The answers to what causes and ends the ice ages are well known by scientists. Do you believe scientists? If not, then I guess we'll never know what cause or ends ice ages. But if you do believe scientists are competent, then they are telling us that no matter what the background level of climate change is, the rapid deforestation and GHG emissions are unprecedented in the history of the planet except for catastrophic mass extinction events. Fortunately, we will all be long-dead before the global warming problem becomes severe enough to impact our quality of life. Thus, it is our great-grandchildren's problem, not ours. So, I am not going to change my lifestyle. My grandchildren and yours can deal with it – or die – I don't care.

      September 16, 2012 at 2:36 pm | Reply
    • Dan C

      Libs don't cause climate change, as yur name implies.

      Yet yur comment is ignorant AND is dangerous.
      Here is a link going back 800k years.
      No man back then. Give the graphic the full 3:15 to run and watch and learn about CO2.

      September 16, 2012 at 2:39 pm | Reply
    • sojourndave

      What was the level of CO2 (and other greenhouse gases) at the times of the geologic events to which you refer? What is the level of CO2 now? What was it one hundred years ago? In addition to the perennial dynamics of natural climate change, what has been demonstrated about the effects of adding the new, unprecedented amount of CO2? Will these likely be additive effects, or synergistic effects?

      What kind of name is "libs_r_evil?" Do you offer it in the spirit of conservative good faith discussion, or are you just some kind of troll?

      How topical is your comment to today's show? What was the primary theme of today's show? Did the report deal with the man's view of global warming, or with his efforts to live and act locally?

      You are here to provoke and offend. How evil is that?

      September 16, 2012 at 2:41 pm | Reply
      • Deadguy

        Sorry, Dave... I guess he was just channeling the Progressive mindset.


        September 16, 2012 at 3:01 pm |
    • serenity now ?

      libs r evil(nice!)..AKA(don't give a crap)...When the ice caps are melting and the planet is in obvious danger it is not healthy to deny the possibility of MMGW.Perhaps the %99.9 of scientists are wrong and the Koch brothers' %01 are correct,but you might want to entertain the chance that the greed brothers have an agenda.Just saying'..

      September 16, 2012 at 3:06 pm | Reply
    • libs_r_evil

      "To capture the public imagination,
      we have to offer up some scary scenarios,
      make simplified dramatic statements
      and little mention of any doubts one might have.
      Each of us has to decide the right balance
      between being effective,
      and being honest."
      – Leading greenhouse advocate, Dr Stephen Schneider
      (in interview for "Discover" magazine, Oct 1989)

      September 16, 2012 at 3:38 pm | Reply
    • Dave123

      The ice ages were caused by what we call Milkanovitch cycles (regular, very long term changes in the earth's distance from the sun, the angle of tilt towards the sun). They ended the same way with the help of green house gas emissions. Where have you been that you don't know this? We know where we are in those cycles, and things don't change much in 200 years. But CO2 has changed from 260 ppm to 390 ppm in the last couple of centuries.

      September 16, 2012 at 3:41 pm | Reply
    • wesley

      well I can tell you that right now. the massive size of the continents blocked warm air from reaching the entire globe. caused by a shift in the jet streems. it then ended with a massive rise in the Co2 levels in the late proterozoic period, probley caused by lots of volcanic activity. other similer ice ages started and ended in a similar way. but never in the history of this planet has there been such a sharp rise in Co2 gases. man is causing this by burning fuels.

      September 16, 2012 at 4:40 pm | Reply
  13. Schhhience

    Ok, for a preface, I don't like the current concept of AGW, and contrary to the author's assertion, alot of the people in the field I deal with, and many of my coworkers think AGW is a joke.

    However– to push REAL common sense, other than some stupid political agenda or belief, here is what actually needs to be done.

    –Regardless of whether AGW is real or not I think we can all agree that science and technological progression are great endeavors and should be expanded, not only in America but internationally. Through real investment in new technology and infrastructure (not necessarily green techonology, but more along the lines of more efficient technology that currently exists and is only waiting on widspread implementation) it is possible to save electricity, water, increase recycling, reduce land use and waste, and reduce the Carbon footprint (and more potent greenhouse gases) as a byblow.

    People get too caught up in the argument and not enough in common sense solutions that would improve life and environemental quality regardless of whether AGW actually exists or not. Thats the problem with politicizing an issue, it becomes more about the idea than any possible progress that may result from it.

    September 16, 2012 at 2:05 pm | Reply
    • El Flaco

      Goober, the only literate people on earth who do not believe in man-made global warming are Republican voters with no college education.

      September 16, 2012 at 2:23 pm | Reply
  14. HenryMiller

    "In the scientific community, there is no doubt about where we are heading and what is causing it. ... but the situation as a whole is clear; global warming is real..."

    That simply isn't true. There may be no doubt among the people who agree that there's no doubt, but those same people deny, dismiss, and do their best to keep from being published anyone, even those with qualifications as good or better than theirs, who disagrees with them. It's like saying that in the cat-allergic community, there's no doubt that cats cause allergies.

    And, rather than demanding to know about "carbon footprint," I'd rather see proof that it matters. From those who claim that they know AGW is happening, and that it will be catastrophic in scope, I'd rather see proof in the form of reasonably exact mathematical models that retroactively predict the Little Ice Age, the Medieval Warm period, and the millions of years of prior ice ages, all based on conditions prior to those events. Until the past can be explained, it's ridiculous to claim you can predict the future. After all, "the future" will some day be "the past."

    September 16, 2012 at 1:53 pm | Reply
    • Darth Cheney

      No amount of proof in the world could convince you, because you've already betrayed that you believe the consensus of the scientific community is some sort of liberal conspiracy. Lay off the Kool-Aid.

      September 16, 2012 at 2:10 pm | Reply
      • Deadguy

        Duh, I can't refute your comments so I'll make Ad Hominem attacks against someone else. This is why the Left will lose in the end.


        September 16, 2012 at 3:23 pm |
    • pn

      The statement is true. You confuse the "scientific community" with right wing disinformation web pages. Check the latest decade of the leading publication outlet "Science" and try to find any (real) scholars arguing against C02 driving the currently increasing temperatures.

      September 16, 2012 at 2:13 pm | Reply
      • Deadguy

        Can you answer his questions about Medieval Warming and The Little Ice Age? If you can, then please, by all means, answer him. Don't refer him to some collection of research that will take years to absorb. Just answer the questions asked. If you can't, you're obfuscating... This sort of behavior is prevalent in all the Progressives I've ever met... The number is considerable. Faced with a question they can't answer they attempt to send the questioner off on a quest to destroy the ONE RING because they don't have an answer to the questions asked... If you don't have simple, to the point, specific factual answers, then you don't have answers.


        September 16, 2012 at 3:34 pm |
      • pn

        I'm in a different field so I don't know the details, but I think the most common view about the little Ice age and the medieval warming period is that they were regional/local phenomena. As such, there is no need to explain them.

        September 16, 2012 at 4:59 pm |
    • Dave123

      For someone who obviously doesn't do any modeling, you're sure placing some interesting demands on it. We can predict and model the ice ages because those as simply a function of the Milkanovitch cycles. For the alleged Medieval warm period and little ice age- there remains the question of whether they were truly global phenomena- or simply regional...and climate models are pushing toward regional predictions but based on far more starting state data than we have for those other phenomena.

      In the meantime what we do have the certain knowledge that CO2 is trapping more heat in the earth's biosphere and oceans, and we know that land temperatures have been rising and the pH has been dropping in the oceans. We can see the radiation loss to space in the IR bands as predicted because of increased CO2, water vapor and other greenhouse gases, and we can see that same radiation bouncing back at the earth from ground stations.

      Climate models do not and cannot predict volcanos, changes in the economy or technology of emissions. They can only run scenarios based on guess about what those things will be in the future. Given reasonable guesses Hansens 1980s work has held up pretty well in forecasting todays global average temperature. But details about which glacier melt, when the arctic will be ice free in the summer, (and what the consequences of that are), exactly when droughts and heat waves will occur are beyond the capabilities of climate modeling now, and may be forever, because some elements that go into inital and boundary conditions are simply chaotic.

      In the meantime, some of us are starting to suspect that the scientific community, far from being alarmis, has bent over backwards not to be alarmist. The failure of climate models to predict the current ice loss in the artic is a prime example. This wasn't supposed to happen for decades.

      I could go on, but leave it that the goal posts set forth aren't particularly useful. Here's an alternative challenge for you: Why don't any models at all predict stable or cooling temperatures in the face of increased CO2? You know that Exxon and Shell have been funding climate model studies....why can't they get a favorable result?

      September 16, 2012 at 3:57 pm | Reply
      • Michael Moon

        Why do ALL the Global Circulation Models use clouds as a positive forcing? This is not established. Without this positive forcing CO2 would do almost nothing to the weather. Clouds could just as easily be a negative forcing. The modellers are all ardent activists, and would not go into this "profession otherwise. None of them ever ever discuss whether clouds should be positive or negative, they just hit the + sign and run the simulation. Try it with the – sign, see what happens.

        September 16, 2012 at 4:11 pm |
      • Dave123

        Michael, because all the measurements on clouds show them to be net positive forcings. It's not assumptions. It's been uncertain in the past, but it is far less uncertain now. But for a guy who doesn't know where the CO2 is coming from, it's really hard to imagine anything getting through your preconceptions and invented notions of AGW.

        September 16, 2012 at 6:13 pm |
  15. Tim W.

    Sure we should do better taking care of this planet but lets face facts.....the climate will change ! The climate has been changing sense the first two bits of dust got stuck together and the climate will keep changing long after we humans are long gone the way of the Dinos ! If you worry about the sea level coming up...well move to higher ground....if you wait till theres water in your living not blame science or the government or FEMA etc !
    I know it sounds so simple and it is just that simple....the climate has chnaged, is changing and will change !
    Resistance is futile !!!!!!!

    September 16, 2012 at 1:47 pm | Reply
    • HenryMiller

      Consider the "Like" button clicked.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:56 pm | Reply
    • regertz

      You know we mean rapid change due to human effect. Look, Tim...The human population has jumped from 1 billion to nearly 7 in a century. We've dumped enormous amounts of CO2 and other gases which affect mean temperature into the atmosphere...This is not a natural, cycling process occuring over tens or hundreds of thousands of years. It's too late to stop the results but with effort we can limit the damage, including the sort of severe drought that will turn the Middle West into a dust bowl permanently if not checked....Now you may not care about that, thinking you'll die before it gets too bad but most of us have kids, grandkids, nieces, nephews, and children of friends and relatives we care for. Also we can plan ahead for predicted further changes and try to migitate the results.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:57 pm | Reply
      • Michael Moon

        Where did you get the idea that natural processes take tens or hundreds of thousands of years to affect change? That is a giant factual error. The Vostok ice cores, as well as GISP-1 and -2, show jumps of 5 to 10C over a few dozen years, more than once or twice.
        You know much less than you claim you know.

        September 16, 2012 at 3:52 pm |
      • Tim W.

        So what you say is you are willing to delete 6/7's of the worlds population to save the world ? If the people are the problem then the only answer is to delete the people from the equation ! Good luck with that !

        September 16, 2012 at 6:33 pm |
  16. Josie

    I believe in what you are doing, but don't flights to Costa Rica leave a pretty big carbon footprint?

    September 16, 2012 at 1:39 pm | Reply
    • Mr. Sinjensmith

      No, they get you there by paddleboat.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:42 pm | Reply
  17. DN3

    I sincerely hope that people don't just use the climate sciences to assess the presence or absence of climate sciences. Comparing what is going on now with the past 10,000 years is helpful but can be misleading. If you think current knowledge of climate science is not complete, well then neither are all the 'data' we have of our planet's climate and ecosystems. You can't just look at one aspect, you have to look at the big picture. And looking at the sudden changes in the animal and marine world, one only needs common sense to realize that something global and something very big is happening. Whether or not we are completely responsible for the current warming (and cooling) trends, we have to acknowledge that a previously unaccounted for influence has been in action since the Industrial Revolution: pollution of our atmosphere by humans. These types of influences by a rapidly growing world population can't possibly be having no effect on our climate. Does the fire really have to be at our doorstep before we do anything?

    September 16, 2012 at 1:29 pm | Reply
    • DN3

      Oops, I meant to say the presence or absence of climate *change*

      September 16, 2012 at 1:29 pm | Reply
    • Michael Moon

      What exactly were the sudden changes in the animal and marine world before the Industrial Revolution? Your sweeping statement regarding a previously unaccounted for (sic) influence has no basis in fact. I am not from Missouri, but Show Me anyway. Correlation does not imply causation.

      September 16, 2012 at 3:49 pm | Reply
      • Dave123

        But since we have correlation, we have a mechanism and quantifiable predictions from that mechanism, and disproof of alternative mechanisms, we're in a far stronger position.

        September 16, 2012 at 6:44 pm |
    • DN3

      Changes in animal and marine life NOW not before the Industrial Revolution.

      September 16, 2012 at 10:29 pm | Reply
  18. johnquepublique

    When you tell the same lie over and over and over and over again...sooner or later, the general public will accept it as gospel. Once again, the lib-errorists tell it again.

    When the lib-errorists listen to the science community and understand the nature of the our living and breathing earth, they will better understand that the oceans emit hot water from it's base. The volcanoes will continue to throw ash and noxious gases into the earth's atmosphere. The atmosphere will continue to regulate itself and change weather-patterns from time to time. For those that study history and science they will see these patterns throughout history. For those that choose to not study these changes....they will continue to spew their "sky is falling" mantra...

    September 16, 2012 at 1:19 pm | Reply
    • El Flaco

      Every literate person on earth knows that man-made global warming is real except for American Republican voters with a high-school education or less.

      Conservatives bark and clap like the trained seals they are whenever someone mentions global warming.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:25 pm | Reply
      • Mr. Sinjensmith

        You are the one barking and clapping, or didn't you notice?

        September 16, 2012 at 1:30 pm |
      • Mr. Sinjensmith

        When you don't recognize the mark, it's you.

        September 16, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
    • El Flaco

      Every competent climate scientist on earth – except for a few who are employed by global oil corporations – believe that man-made global warming is a fact.

      Every government on earth believes that man-made global warming is a fact.

      Only poorly educated Republican voters in the US question that fact. Of course, Republican voters do not believe in evolution, mathematics, statistics, or pi either.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:33 pm | Reply
      • Mr. Sinjensmith

        Of course, democrat voters don't believe in the law of supply and demand either.

        September 16, 2012 at 1:37 pm |
      • Mr. Sinjensmith

        Every journalist on earth believes in whatever he is told by his democrat masters, and regurgitates it upon the rest of the populace.

        September 16, 2012 at 1:39 pm |
      • Mr. Sinjensmith

        Seriously, if "the government" believes it, there is no better indicator that it's wrong.

        September 16, 2012 at 1:41 pm |
    • Frank

      Don't argue with him. you can't change stupid.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:55 pm | Reply
    • wesley

      humm well first off its not the lib's and its not the dems. its the republicans that just laugh at this. im a liberal dem and I know this is no laughing matter. I know this does exist, and if left unchecked this will destroy our planet. second off as a planet ages it starts shutting down the volcanoes, and less and less gas is realeased from the ocean floor. because theres less heat to make the gas, and less friction in the plates. 3rd the atmosphere IS changing because of the Co2. the more Co2, the hotter, the less the colder. there is way more Co2 in the air right now then ever in this period of time. all man made Co2.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:55 pm | Reply
    • regertz

      You're telling us that the jump from 1-7 billion in a century means nothing? That dumping millions of tons of garbage into the atmosphere has no effect? Bullcrap JQP and you know it.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:59 pm | Reply
    • ngc1300

      "the oceans emit hot water from it's base." What?

      September 16, 2012 at 2:32 pm | Reply
    • Dave123

      So John q- since you're talking about the science community, you surely must have a source for your allegation that the oceans are emitting heat from the base. It's really an astounding claim....surely you can provide evidence for it.

      September 16, 2012 at 5:29 pm | Reply
  19. Keith

    Sustainable systems will look a lot different than his piece of paradise, but he can make a great contribution with the education he provides.

    September 16, 2012 at 12:52 pm | Reply
  20. 2tor

    "In the scientific community, there is no doubt about where we are heading and what is causing it. "

    When you begin a story with a lie. That's alll it will ever be, is a story. When we use rationality, and common sense, instead of emotion, we'll get a lot further with "climate change"

    September 16, 2012 at 12:45 pm | Reply
    • me

      You are the typical naysayer – head in sand, do nothing republican.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:13 pm | Reply
      • Mr. Sinjensmith

        You are the typical democrat, create straw man arguments and do "something" regardless of the harm caused.

        September 16, 2012 at 1:28 pm |
      • Mr. Sinjensmith

        Do you accept responsibility for the malaria deaths caused by the abolition of DDT?

        September 16, 2012 at 1:32 pm |
      • miketol

        @ Mr sinjinsmith. The EPA does not have the power (or the inclination) to ban the use of DDT worldwide. In the US, since the banning of DDT, we have not suffered "millions" of deaths due to malaria. Similarly, other industrialized nations who have banned most uses of DDT have not suffered "millions" of deaths. Of course, where millions of deaths HAVE occurred has been in developing nations, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa. And guess what? Those nations have continued using DDT all along. Visit the WHO ( for some real information, instead of your biased anti-environmental "sources" It's clear your views on environmental problems are about as well-informed as your views on the uses of DDT.

        September 16, 2012 at 2:17 pm |
    • regertz

      It is not a lie and only people too greedy or ignorant to heed scientific fact call it such.

      September 16, 2012 at 2:03 pm | Reply
    • Darth Cheney

      What happens, though, when half of the most powerful country on earth (and hardly anyone else anywhere) believes that 2+2=4 is a lie and 2+2=5 is the truth? 100 years from now, you right-wing freaks will be compared, unfavorably, to the flat-earthers, who at least existed in an era before scientific literacy and mass communication were available.

      September 16, 2012 at 2:14 pm | Reply
    • Dave123

      No context, no content, no citations....just assertion.

      We measure the radiation blocked from going back into space, we measure it returning to the ground. That's scientific fact. It's also fact that global temperatures are increasing....even the Koch brothers now agree. We also know that we're not got getting more heat from the sun.

      So unless you've got another physics based explanation, you're up a creek without a paddle.

      "Natural variation" isn't a physics based explanation- it's an excuse for not knowing any science and being too arrogant and lazy to study it.

      September 16, 2012 at 5:27 pm | Reply
  21. Chris Reeve

    Re: "In the scientific community, there is no doubt about where we are heading and what is causing it."

    We hear this all the time, but I'm afraid it's simply not true. It is possible to be pro-science, pro-Obama, Democrat, believe that something is probably happening, but also anti-AGW. Where most climate scientists go wrong is in not realizing that, like other scientists, they are specialists - And that, being a specialist, they are forced to take for granted the work of other specialists. I'm speaking principally about the discipline of astrophysics, which lays a foundation for the climate sciences. If there are mistakes in astrophysics, then these mistakes do not remain confined to astrophysics. They percolate downwards into the other disciplines.

    The AGW climate models make certain assumptions. Among these assumptions is that our universe is principally dominated by gravity - the weakest force known. Gravity is so weak that the electric Coulomb force is on the order of 10^39 times stronger than it. If a unification of the forces of Nature is indeed possible, common sense dictates that gravity would be side-effect of electromagnetism - Not the reverse.

    And yet, the AGW models reflect the exact opposite belief, insofar as they fail to account for a phenomenon known as "electric joule heating." Even though we call it the solar "wind," the stream of charged particles emanating from the Sun is no wind at all. Moving charged particles are called electric currents in the laboratory. And when you pass an electric current through something, as Mr Wizard demonstrated, it heats up.

    Now, imagine that you are a lightning researcher, but that your measuring device for monitoring lightning does not measure the lightning's light. It instead measures the electrical current, and it can only observe flows of electricity which are a mile wide. This is effectively the state of the AGW models with regards to electric joule heating: We are not even taking sufficiently accurate data yet to even accurately measure the effect of electric joule heating. And yet, we know that our planet is every day being assaulted with high-speed charged particles.

    Our work is not yet done, and we need to stop pretending that we already know everything that we need to know ...


    Possible reasons for underestimating Joule heating in global models: E-Field variability, spatial resolution and vertical velocity

    "It is important to understand Joule heating because it can significantly change the temperature structure, atmosphere composition and electron density, and hence, influences satellite drag. It is thought that many coupled ionosphere-thermosphere models underestimate Joule heating because the spatial and temporal variability of the ionospheric electric field is not totally captured within global models."



    Please stop pretending that the science is settled. It's not true, and science journalists do great harm when they pretend that it has been.

    September 16, 2012 at 12:42 pm | Reply
    • Keith

      I am often attacked by "scientist" that believe it is settled science. Too bad scientists don’t take history classes.

      I do however do everything I can to develop sustainable systems, save the forest and save BTU's in every project I design or build. I work with the larger community to train and educate those in my industry to do the same. I am actually doing something to save the planet no matter what the science is.

      I believe that Earth Stewardship is a worthy goal with or without global warming and have been doing it for almost thirty years.

      September 16, 2012 at 12:58 pm | Reply
    • Mr. Sinjensmith


      September 16, 2012 at 1:22 pm | Reply
    • minnesota realist

      Let's say for the moment that the current trend toward warmer temps is driven by your electric heating model. It doesn't matter in terms of the need for human action. Our current behavior, even if it is not THE cause, serves to amplify the effect. Can we agree on that much? If so, we must make changes sooner since we're making a change we can't entirely control even worse. If not, stay out of the conversation since no amount of evidence, no mountain of data will ever be enough to convince you.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:22 pm | Reply
      • Mr. Sinjensmith

        I hope you ride a horse to work and grow your own vegetables.

        September 16, 2012 at 1:25 pm |
    • c s

      Interesting comments. Science is never settled; it is always an ongoing attempt to understand the world and the universe. If humans wait until everyone agrees on anything, then nothing will ever get done. With the current technology it is possible to make weather predictions about 3 to 7 days in advance. Beyond that it is currently impossible. Climate predictions are better but the variations are quite large. If you live in New York city, generally most days in January will be colder than most days in July. However you can still have a day in January that is warmer than a day in July. So saying that January is colder than July is generally agreed to be true. As for climate changing, it depends upon the time frame. I would guess that a minimum time frame is probably 10 or 20 years. Due to huge complexity of climate, it can only be predicted over a large time frame from the historical records. I believe that one of the best indicators of a warming climate is record high versus record lows in a year. So if the number of record high days greatly outnumbers the record low days, then you can say that the climate is warming. This is exactly what is happening. Since most climatologists believe that the world is getting warmer then the next question is why this happening. Again most climatologists believe that increasing amounts of CO2 is causing it.

      NASA, NOAA and the US military all believe that the climate is warming and that CO2 is causing it. Maybe these organizations are wrong but I doubt that there is any political reasons for their official beliefs. When so many people who spend their life studying the climate and say that it is happening and that CO2 is causing it, then the time to act is now. Waiting until absolute proof means doing nothing forever.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:56 pm | Reply
      • D R

        But the Earth hasn't actually warmed in 14 years.

        Yes, perhaps your "10 to 20" year window is (conveniently) valid, but what of all the alarm about the polar ice caps? If they are shrinking yearly due to Global Warming, why are they shrinking now instead of when the Earth was actually warming?

        Why do we get constant alarm about flooded cities, when sea level rise has been very steady around 2mm per year for over a centuy of rapid CO2 buildup? It would take a thousand years to rise even 2 meters at that rate, and we probably will only be using CO2 emitting fuels for another 50 years or so.

        Why do droughts AND floods get blamed on Global Warming? What is the scientific basis of this? Theoretically the poles warm the most, leading to a world with smaller temperature differentials and thus FEWER storms, not more.

        The AGW alarmists are their own worst enemy, because enough hyperbole over time leads the vigilant among us to call them on it publicly.

        September 16, 2012 at 2:52 pm |
      • Michael Moon

        Record highs vs record lows for records that go back 100 to 150 years on a 4 billion year old planet, right, irrefutable evidence. NASA, NOAA and the US Military believe what Obama tells them they believe.

        September 16, 2012 at 3:43 pm |
      • Dave123

        Oh, nonsense, the earth hasn't warmed in 14 years. This is just cherrypicking data based on the 1998 el nino. The fact is the average temperature from 2000-2009 is higher than 1990-1999. That's how you track tempertures.

        September 16, 2012 at 4:49 pm |
      • Dave123

        What you've got is your own imaginary version of what you think global warming should be about.
        first, the earth is still warming, and that's why the ice is going in the north. Don't be fooled by a spike in 1998.

        This scienific basis for droughts and flood being blamed on global warming is that most of the heat goes into the regions boardering the seas get floods. The inland regions heat up, jet stream changes lock weather patterns in place and you get heat waves and droughts. But you don't want to hear it, just aren't paying attention, or are convinced that the people studying this stuff aren't far smarter than you....and you take the position you have no need or obligation to study what they've worked on because you're just so special.

        You've cited no basis for the poles getting warmer leading to fewer storms....where did you pull that one from.
        What does happen is the jet stream slows down, and like a slower river gets more kinks in it, leading to stalled weather patterns. All being discussed and analyzed in the scientific literature.

        What is really frustrating is how so many people, without even basic knoweldge of physics, the history of climate studies etc., think they have a useful opinion. Really a shame.

        September 16, 2012 at 4:58 pm |
      • Dave123

        @Michael Moon...if all those organization are doing what Obama tells them to, then they were doing what Bush told them to also....and you know they weren't denying climate change back then. Tin foil hat stuff.

        September 16, 2012 at 4:59 pm |
    • ngc1300

      Gravity may be the weakest force, but it's the only one that works in a coherent way. i.e. towards the center of mass. That's why the weakest force can overwhelm all the other stronger (electromagnetic, weak nuclear, and strong nuclear) forces. If you don't believe me, go jump in a black hole.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:57 pm | Reply
    • ngc1300

      "Common sense" dictates that gravity should be a side-effect of the electromagnetic force"? Much of science is counter-intuitive. Perhaps you should bounce your ideas off Stephen Hawking, or John Wheeler, or Steven Weinberg, or Kip Thorne? Hmm?

      September 16, 2012 at 2:04 pm | Reply
    • regertz

      Joule heating by solar wind is of limited variability. Global warming models are based on increasing CO2 in the atmosphere. There is reasonable data to show not only is CO2 modulated warming occuring but that CO2 sinks, including the results of deep ocean data, are failing due to the rapid and overwhelming increase in CO2 emissions from human society. There is never 100% proof in Science, that is the nature of the game but to suggest the enormous increase in human activity on this planet over the past century has no effect is ridiculous.

      September 16, 2012 at 2:10 pm | Reply
    • Dave123

      You're citing unpublished work, but Deng and Ridely have been publishing regularly. You however also are misreading the papers. The overall business of AGW is about increased heat retention on earth, (radiative forcing) commonly reported to be about 1.4-1.6 w/m2. Nowhere in D and R's paper do they discuss the idea that joule heating causes a significant error in this estimate. Your are confused about a detail that the authors themselves make no claim influences radiative forcing. Other papers studying upper atmosphere heating (Marsh 2009) for example don't show significant influences on the energy budget... nor do comprehensive papers such as those by Trenberth (2006, 2009, 2011). I think you're barking up the wrong tree.

      September 16, 2012 at 5:23 pm | Reply
  22. spinoneone

    Well, let's see, if we go back 1000 years we didn't have global warming. We did, however, have global freezing. We also didn't have electricity, cars and trucks, railroads, airplanes, or a global market place for our good and services. The average male lived 35 years, women four or five longer, except those that died in childbirth or complications from it.

    Clean air and water are generally good things. In fact, in the U.S., our CO2 emissions are at their lowest point in 20 years. China – India – Russia, all of Africa, well, in fact, they aren't doing so well. Of course, they all harbor dreams of making great progress for the lives of their populations. Europe is also doing much better. London and Los Angeles looked a lot a like in terms of air pollution in 1950-60. They look a lot alike today, too, with generally clear skies.

    I also remember that, because of somewhat shaky science promulgated by Rachel Carson, we stopped using DDT around the world in an effort to save some birds. Now, malaria is making a strong comeback in Africa and we can't use DDT to stop it. Is that important? I don't know, but I do know that DDT is the only chemical compound known that will stop the malaria mosquito. So are a couple of bird species worth saving by allowing a million Africans to die? You be the judge.

    September 16, 2012 at 12:33 pm | Reply
    • Dave123

      There's a nice slate article a few weeks ago about've got nearly all your facts wrong...and DDT is presently being used in Africa to do things like treat mosquito nets Wholesale spraying leads to DDT resistant mosquitos and kills polinators required for food and cash crops. A bit more complicated than you'd like it to be, I know. To bad...reality has both a liberal bias and is generally too complicated for conservative's "values" based world views.

      September 16, 2012 at 7:20 pm | Reply
  23. Draxta

    Here I thought this article was going to talk about climate change, which is a cyclical event as a result of the earths precession. Instead I find a shameless plug. Typical CNN garbage.

    September 16, 2012 at 12:30 pm | Reply
    • me

      what a moron you are. but not too worry – when the climate really starts to takes its toll – the dumb ones go first 🙂

      September 16, 2012 at 1:17 pm | Reply
  24. Drroberts49

    I have no problem with consevation and recycling. It all makes good sense. What I have a problem understanding, is why no one understands that climate change is part of the normal process of our planet. Has anyone ever taken a course in geology? The planet is dynamic. It changes on its own time. Geologic time. It's getting warmer not just because of human contribution. We're at the ending of an ice age. It's suppose to be warmer. The planet changes and those that can't adapt die. Trying to keep it simple, but when was the last time you saw a dinosaur? Or a mammoth? And its not always the slow change of geologic time. If Yellowstone goes, we won't have to worry about smog and industrial pollution. Our only chance to survive the planet, was lost when we turned our back on space and started hitching rides with the Russians. Right now, we got all our eggs in one basket. Mother Earth,has no more feeling for us as a species as it did for the dinosaurs. You want to save human kind? Bring back space travel.

    September 16, 2012 at 12:26 pm | Reply
    • Dave123

      You must have had a course in basic chemistry or the conceptof conservation of energy cannot be entirely foreign to you. For the earth as a whole to get warmer it either must get more heat from the sun (the sun gets brighter, the earth moves closer in its orbit, changes tilt etc) or it gives up less heat back to space. (no, there is no heat to speak of coming from the molten core of the earth). We can track the total insolation very precisely....and over the past 50 years the average trend has been slightly down....but less overall than the 11 year cycles. We do see the green house gases trapping heat on the earth, both by observations from satellites above looking down, and ground stations looking up. We see temperatures going up on earth's surface and heat building up in the oceans.

      anything else is simply handwaving mysticism....

      September 16, 2012 at 4:45 pm | Reply
  25. See Novak

    Let's see: Climate Change, unlike its predecessor Global Warming, can't be discredited by observable events. More hurricanes than last year? Climate Change! Fewer hurricanes? Well, that's climate change, too! Record high temperatures?You guessed it: Climate Change! Freezing in Miami ? Ditto! Even if humans were contributing to a gradual change in earth's climate, NOTHING WILL CHANGE until the population is under control. Cap & Trade is just another gimmick to enrich Wall Street Hedge Funds at the cost of average Americans

    September 16, 2012 at 12:25 pm | Reply
    • GaryB

      Climate change is global warming. The reason you see scientists using the term climate change more often is that a lot of lay people couldn't grasp the concept that as the planet grows warmer, shifts in weather become more pronounced, so a planet that's hotter overall can result in record snowstorms and other winter phenomena in some locations. Look at the consistent reduction of polar ice (which has been accelerating the last few years) and you can pretty much confirm that global warming is real. But look, even if you refuse to believe that mankind has anything to do with the planet getting warmer... almost all steps that should be taken to address climate change would be good for the US consumer in the long run. Greater reliance on home-grown green energy reduces our reliance on foreign oil (much of which is provided by people who don't like us much. Reducing emissions reduces the rates the of asthma and other lung ailments which should lower the cost of health insurance for all of us. And the list goes on.

      September 16, 2012 at 12:42 pm | Reply
      • Michael Moon

        A ridiculous fabrication. Just because the average moves does not mean the standard deviation increases. If the average temp increases 0.7 degrees C, than the average hot spell will be 0.7 C warmer. That is all you know. Why would the Standard Deviation change at all?
        We don't know much about the weather prior to 1851 when the British Navybegan collecting daily air and water temperatures. We use thermometers accurate to +-0.5 C for almost all our data, and argue about changes in the third decimal place. We simply do not have the information to make these claims.

        September 16, 2012 at 3:37 pm |
      • Dave123

        MM- just because the average moves, doesn't mean that the standard deviation doesn't increase either. What Hansen showed in his paper published last month in the Proceeding of the National Academy of Sciences is that that deviation has increased as well. But keeping up with the literature isn't exactly what you do is it?

        September 16, 2012 at 6:51 pm |
      • Dave123

        There is always someone in these threads who finds the terminology global warming vs climate change to be signfiicant. They typically accuse people of changing the name to confuse things, to hide that it isnt warming and various other nonsense and non-fact. The fact is that Climate Change has been used from the first IPCC (the CC stands for Climate Change), in the 1990s, and that the US political emphasis on this stems from a Republican strategist, Frank Luntz, whose revealed secret memo advised Republicans to change the language to Climate Change because it sounds less threatening.

        September 16, 2012 at 6:54 pm |
  26. Michael Moon

    "how much damage we can expect" There is no proof that there will be ANY! Temperatures may have risen 0.7 degrees C in 150 years, since the Little Ice Age ended. Temperatures vary, always have, always will. The Arctic is only above freezing from June 10 to August 20, and changes in Arctic ice have varied wildly over the last 11,000 years since the last Ice Age ended. We have only been watching with satellites since the 70's.
    Don't believe everything you read, examine the evidence yourself, without any activist spin...

    September 16, 2012 at 12:15 pm | Reply
    • minnesota realist

      "Temperatures vary, always have, always will."

      The classic out for the deniers. It essentially allows you to ignore any and all evidence. Nothing will ever convince you- no matter how much or what kind of evidence is presented – because you've already decided. You can always fall back on "it's a natural cycle."

      The funny part is that those who roll out this gem, acting as if they've discovered something all of the stupid scientists forgot to take into account, tend to be the least qualified to do so. Hobby scientists and weekend Internet researchers.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:31 pm | Reply
      • Michael Moon

        Activists wth no statistics to back themselves up always resort to ad hominem attacks. "Denier," "hobby scientist," "weekend Internet researcher," your words tell us who you are. CO2 absorbs some longwave radiation which would otherwise be transmitted to space. Is the CO2 increasing because the oceans are warming, or are the ocean warming because the CO2 is increasing? How do you know? Can you prove it? Our puny 3% contribution to annual natural sources of CO2 may or may not be the cause of what may or may not be an unusual rise in atmospheric CO2. Ice cores show CO2 concentrations averaged over centuries, and do not show annual fluctuations.
        You know much less than you claim you know.

        September 16, 2012 at 3:23 pm |
      • Dave123

        Michael- Denier is an appropriate term for people who rehash the same disproven stuff every time an article like this is posted. Activist is simply your version of name-calling. CNN blocks posting links to citations, so it's hard to provide the evidence needed, but what we see in this thread are all the classics- it isn't warming, it's the sun (solar wind in this case), and you're not understanding the basic of mass balance, or knowing that isotope signature prove that the CO2 increase inthe atmosphere proves that the CO2

        September 16, 2012 at 6:09 pm |
    • AR

      MM, I agree, don't believe everything you read, check the evidence. What I find so funny are your statements that totally disagree with the all the evidence that the current warming is due to man's carbon release. You have expressed an amazing contradiction in your post

      September 16, 2012 at 2:45 pm | Reply
      • Michael Moon

        CO2 absorbs some longwave radiation which would otherwise be transmitted to space. Is the CO2 increasing because the oceans are warming, or are the ocean warming because the CO2 is increasing? How do you know? Can you prove it? Our puny 3% contribution to annual natural sources of CO2 may or may not be the cause of what may or may not be an unusual rise in atmospheric CO2. Ice cores show CO2 concentrations averaged over centuries, and do not show annual fluctuations.

        September 16, 2012 at 3:26 pm |
      • Dave123

        Oh Michael, c'mon. If CO2 was increasing because the oceans were heating, then we'd measure a decrease in CO2 in the oceans corresponding to the increase in the atmosphere. But we don't. In fact CO2 in the oceans is increasing...just as you'd expect if humans dump CO2 into the air, and then its absorbed by the ocean. Just because you haven't bothered to study this stuff doesn't mean other people haven't. Don't confuse your state of ignorance with the climate science community. Best you assume that if you don't know something you need to look it up, not that all those other people are wrong.

        September 16, 2012 at 6:04 pm |
    • Dave123

      And what was the last primary source paper you read Michael? Read Hansens' PNAS paper last month? How about any of the radioistope studies on atmospheric CO2. Got yourself a copy of a climate text, such as Pierrehumberts "Principes of Planetary Climate"? Do you know the difference between the Greenland and Antarctica Ice cores? Which papers there have you read? Daansgard perhaps? Or not. We'd love to know if you take your own advice.

      September 16, 2012 at 6:59 pm | Reply
  27. Keith

    carbon trading and credits are a scam to make a few people rich, they have nothing to do with a solution. Until he talked abouty the "TRUE" cost of things I thought he was a reasonable individual.

    No matter what we do the world will change and be forever different.

    What is important is that everyone do what they can locally to protect the enviroment. I chose to save the world by the work I do and everyone can make the same choice in the way they live their lives.

    September 16, 2012 at 12:09 pm | Reply
  28. Greater Good

    Ignorants like Gutz22 above need to sit in a white room full of auto exhaust and cigarette smoke for week with just a crack of air and then tell us what the walls look like and how their lungs and brain feel. Yeah, who needs clean air and water?

    Keep up the good work, Juan.

    September 16, 2012 at 11:55 am | Reply
    • age

      Pollution has nothing to do with greenhouse gas. Different effects and chemicals. Water vapour is the biggest GFG but it isn't polution so your silly example can be stood on its head if you sit in a sauna and feel the refreshing GHG!

      September 16, 2012 at 12:31 pm | Reply
      • regertz

        Pollution has everything to do with greenhouse gas. CO2 emissions are the cause, short-term, non-natural "cycle" warming the result.

        September 16, 2012 at 2:19 pm |
  29. Minnie Mouse

    The entire country needs environmental changes. Changes in our air flow, what's going into our landfills, what's going into our foods that we eat and whats going into our water that we drink. We need a cleaner and greener American so we can all be heathier and let alone breathe better. The less pollutants in the air, environment, our food, the water we drink, and in the streams, rivers, lakes and oceans this will maker for a 'Greater America". So "Climate Change", you rock!!

    September 16, 2012 at 11:55 am | Reply
  30. Lorena San Román

    Ranco Margot es un perfecto ejemplo de lo que es el desarrollo sostenible con educación e integración de la sociedad, adelante amigo,continuaremos apoyando tu iniciativa!!!!!

    September 15, 2012 at 11:13 pm | Reply
    • Keith

      It is a great educational situation but it is not an example of how many of us can live.

      September 16, 2012 at 12:27 pm | Reply
  31. David

    Thanks for the positive example and optimism.

    September 15, 2012 at 11:35 am | Reply
  32. gutz22

    Man caused climate change is a George Soros hoax all part of the international new world order plan to extort taxes from producers.The second biggest hoax & fraud is Soros's puppet, Obama.

    September 15, 2012 at 7:57 am | Reply
    • Derek

      Why do conservatives find conservation so offensive?

      September 16, 2012 at 11:55 am | Reply
      • Keith

        I isn't conservation we are against, it is the scam of Carbon Trading we are against.

        September 16, 2012 at 12:29 pm |
      • 2tor

        We prefer common sense, not more fear mongering from the left. That's all we get from them.

        September 16, 2012 at 12:50 pm |
    • thedoctor

      Watch a lot of Glenn Beck, do we? Ever notice how paranoid conspiracy theorists are? It's laughable that one man can be "behind it all!!!!!!"

      September 16, 2012 at 11:55 am | Reply
    • thedoctor

      Oh, yes....and it's not a plan to "extort taxes from producers." It's about pricing the energy (cough) at its (cough) true cost. (cough, cough) We finally shut down a coal plant in Chicago that's been causing asthma in minority neighborhoods for decades.

      September 16, 2012 at 12:01 pm | Reply
    • GaryB

      Even if you're completely brainwashed by the conservative media and the conservative elite (much of whom have large holdings in foreign oil companies) and you refuse to believe that man has anything to do with global warming, you need to understand that the steps proposed to deal with global warming would be good for the US consumer in the long run. Greater reliance on home-grown green energy reduces our reliance on foreign oil (much of which is provided by people who don't like us much) and would evetually result in lower energy prices. Reduced emissions (particularly in urban area) leads to a reduction of lung-related health ailments, resulting in lower insurance costs for all of us. And by the way, George Soros is just not all that powerful, especially compared to guys like the Koch brothers.

      September 16, 2012 at 12:50 pm | Reply
    • regertz

      Pointless to argue with a fool who gets his "proof" from You Tube but... George Soros? C'mon...At least debate on science grounds...Don't spew ignorant, bigotted conspiracy nonsense.

      September 16, 2012 at 2:21 pm | Reply
  33. fransiweinstein

    I don't understand why so many people don't seem to understand just what a serious problem we've got. What you're doing is amazing and inspiring.

    September 15, 2012 at 7:46 am | Reply
    • Keith

      Actually the part that is not settled science is what will happen. Death and destruction is not inevitable. Global warming will bring about as many opportunities as it will challenges. Human history is evidence of that, we will change to meet the new conditions and be different because of it.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:05 pm | Reply
      • Dave123

        Human history is littered with the corpses of those who didn't adapt or survive. Read Jared Diamond for goodness sake. Surviving isn't supposed to be at a stone-age level. So what's an acceptable death toll for you? 100,000,000? A billion or two?

        September 16, 2012 at 7:08 pm |
      • Keith

        I know Jared Diamond's writings very well. I don't know if I have a number for an acceptable death toll. Historically it takes a death toll of at 30 to 40 percent to drive us into the next major advance of society. So I am guessing that between 2 and 3 billion would probably be a reasonable expectation.

        What always happens first is a grand migration and war so the natural events, flood, famine and inhospitable climate will actually kill very few. Survival at a stone age level would be better than the alternative.

        September 16, 2012 at 7:26 pm |
      • Keith

        If you read to the bottom of the comment section I am sure you read my other comments, I actually do things to save the earth. I earned my opinion with almost thirty years of work on systems that save energy and help the envioroment.

        September 16, 2012 at 7:34 pm |
  34. shano

    An innovator for sustainable living shows it can be done. People need to catch up with Juan Sostheim. Sustainable models of living are best for the planet and for human health and happiness. .

    September 14, 2012 at 3:05 pm | Reply
  35. Jonathan

    Great job!! Look forward to seeing the episode

    September 14, 2012 at 2:58 pm | Reply
  36. Landon

    Fantastic perspective and kudos to you for all of your work!!!

    September 14, 2012 at 2:25 pm | Reply

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