Compare and contrast:
1) In D.C. today, Sen. Jim Inhofe and others of like mind bring up extraordinarily misleading information about global warming, such as repeating Pat Michaels’ shibboleth-cum-hoax that if we did everything promised under the Kyoto Protocol (which, remember, only covered the years from 1990 to 2012**, and wasn’t even reached, much less ratified, until 1997) it would only result in lowering atmospheric temperatures by 7/100ths of a degree Centigrade. (Reason it’s a hoax: Everyone knows that we have to keep cutting greenhouse gas emissions far past 2010 if we are to avert a climate calamity.)*
2) In a recent meeting in Copenhagen, an international body of scientific experts on polar bears concludedthat melting sea ice means that eight of the world’s 19 populations of the furry white beasts are now in decline. That’s up from five that were in decline the last time the world’s polar bear experts met in 2005. (Andy Revkin of the New York Times points out in a worthwhile post that there are serious data gaps; so we don’t really know how many of these populations are faring. We do know, however, that the sea ice they depend on appears to be disappearing.)
**Our favorite storyon today’s Senate Environment and Public Works Committee hearing so far comes to us from Reuters India (!) news service’s coverage. Hed: A Dollar a Day Could Keep Climate Change Away.
Update 2:37 p.m.: Tip o the hat to David Robertson at Grist for tweeting to alert us to this interesting piece on TheHill.com, which argues Republicans are hurting themselves by digging in their heels on the climate issue. Of course, keep in mind that it’s written by bigtime Democratic pollster Mark Mellman.
** Correction: Post originally misstated the end date for the Kyoto Protocol.