It’s been a year since the global carbon dioxide levels have reached 400ppm and climbing.
Here’s my take on the bottom-line from the references below:
Political ideology matters.
The more conservative the politician, the more likely to believe man is not responsible for the continual rise in global temperatures. The more conservative one’s beliefs, the more likely the commitment to the notion of fiscal austerity, that is, reducing government spending as a necessary prerequisite for restoring the economic health of this country, even if it comes at the expense of those in financial need. Conversely, the more progressive the politician, the greater the belief and concern over climate change (not only that it is real, but also real serious) and the strong opposition to the politics of austerity as posing a direct threat not only to the poor but the general economy, as well.
Here’s my question to the republican members of Congress: Your economic and climate change positions are outside the academic and scientific mainstream. In particular, to the potential threats posed by climate change, what if your ideas turn out to be wrong?
From the May 2015 Guardian: Global carbon dioxide levels break 400ppm milestone
“Reaching 400ppm as a global average is a significant milestone,” said Pieter Tans, lead scientist on Noaa’s greenhouse gas network.
“This marks the fact that humans burning fossil fuels have caused global carbon dioxide concentrations to rise more than 120ppm since pre-industrial times,” added Tans. “Half of that rise has occurred since 1980.”
From Nasa: A Year in the Life of Earth’s CO2
And this from the Pew Research Center: Ideological divide over global warming as wide as ever
From the New York Times: The Price of Republican Orthodoxy
“A majority of economists surveyed in 2012 by the University of Chicago found that, despite Republican demands for austerity, the $831 billion American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 stimulus legislation significantly reduced unemployment. Every Republican in the House voted against the bill on Feb. 13, 2009, as did 38 of 41 Republican senators on the same day.”