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Congratulations Alberta, Canada! With a large majority Alberta, Canada has just elected a people friendly, environment friendly premier! Great for Canada and the rest of the world!


NDP Leader Rachel Notley, who ended nearly 44 years of Progressive Conservative rule in Alberta in an extraordinary majority win on Tuesday, has said her government would review the royalties rates paid by oil and gas companies, increase corporate taxes, strengthen environmental rules and halt the practice of spending taxpayer dollars to promote pipeline projects in Washington and elsewhere

The stunning change comes at a time when oil prices are just starting to recover from lows that had sapped billions of dollars of government energy revenues as the sector fell into a downturn.

my bold

Yesterday's Alberta election is one of the biggest shifts in Canadian political history, with huge implications.

Today is hug a Canadian day, everybody!

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Reposted from Lefty Coaster by Lefty Coaster

Gas fracking has be estimated to release much more methane than previous gas industry claims. The worst offender for Methane releases in the US is probably the natural gas field in the Four Corners area.

Methane anomaly in Four Corners area under investigation

By John Hollenhorst

DURANGO, Colo. — There's something in the air in the Four Corners region. Methane. Natural gas. Four research planes and more than two dozen scientists and technologists have descended on the region to figure out where it's coming from.

In the region where Utah rubs shoulders with three other states, satellite imagery detected the nation's worst methane hot spot.

“That’s a huge anomaly,” said Andrew Thorpe from the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory. “But we don’t know exactly where the methane is coming from.”

     
The most obvious suspect is the natural gas industry. It's one of the most productive natural gas fields in the country.

Aubrey explained, “I think it was intriguing to us and deserving of more study.”

Planes operated by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration are collecting airborne samples to quantify the methane.

Eric Kort, a professor of atmospheric science at the University of Michigan, said they are also measuring the chemical fingerprints in the area.

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Reposted from Lefty Coaster by Lefty Coaster

Republican shills for Big Carbon are launching a direct assault on NASA funding designed to gut any future enhancements to the Earth Sciences capabilities to monitor changing conditions on our planet from orbit using satellites.  
 

House GOP Wants to Eviscerate NASA Earth Sciences in New Budget

By Phil Plait

A passel of anti-science global warming denying GOP representatives have put together a funding authorization bill for NASA that at best cuts more than $300 million from the agency’s current Earth science budget.

At worst? More than $500 million.

The actual amount of the cut depends on whether some caps enacted in 2011 are removed or not. If they are, then Earth sciences gets $1.45 billion. If not, it gets $1.2 billion. The current FY 2015 budget is $1.773 billion.

Compare that with the White House request for FY ’16 of $1.947 billion for Earth sciences. The bill will be marked up (amended and rewritten) by the House Science, Space, and Technology Committee today.

The authorization bill passed along party lines (19 Republicans to 15 Democrats) and will move to the House floor eventually for a vote. Rep. Edwards put in an amendment to restore the Earth sciences budget but was voted down ... again along party lines. So there you have it. If this authorization is upheld by the House, it will be reconciled with a Senate version, and then negotiated with the White House. But for now, the huge and devastating cuts to NASA's ability to monitor our warming planet will be the baseline.
From the LA Times:
The GOP attack on climate change science takes a big step forward

By Michael Hiltzik

Living down to our worst expectations, the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology voted Thursday to cut deeply into NASA's budget for Earth science, in a clear swipe at the study of climate change.

The committee's markup of the NASA authorization bill for fiscal 2016 and 2017 passed on a party-line vote, Republicans in the majority. The action followed what appears to be a deliberate attempt to keep Democrats out of the loop. According to Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-Texas), the committee's ranking Democrat, her caucus "did not even know [the markup] existed before last Friday. ... After we saw the bill, we understood why."

From the Washington Post:
Cutting NASA’s earth science budget is short-sighted and a threat

By Marshall Shepherd

When I went to bed last night, I had no intention of writing this commentary. However, I literally could not sleep contemplating the reckless cuts to NASA’s earth sciences budget being proposed by some in the U.S. House of Representatives.

NASA Administrator Charles Bolden, one of the few people that has actually seen our home planet from the vantage point of space, issued a statement noting that proposed cuts, “gut our Earth science program and threatens to set back generations worth of progress in better understanding our changing climate, and our ability to prepare for and respond to earthquakes, droughts, and storm events…” This statement is measured and appropriate, but I am writing to amplify this statement.

Cuts in the $300-500 million dollar range as proposed literally take NASA’s earth science program from the “enhanced” smart phone era back to the first-generation “flip” phones or maybe the rotary phone. It also fundamentally challenges the Congressional mandate of the 1958 Space Act creating NASA.

NASA chief: House budget may 'set back generations worth of progress' in climate research

These Republican imbeciles and the charlatan "experts" they follow are all bought and paid for by fossil fuel billionaires like the Kochs, and other obscenely wealthy individuals blinded by their own insatiable greed.

We haven't seen such a heavy handed attack on science since 1616 when Pope Urban VIII disturbed by Copernicus' Theory of Sun Centered Universe banned its printing and publication, eventually resulting in the trial of Galileo a few decades later.

                                       
                                                        Pope Urban VIII
                                             Role Model for House Republicans
 

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We've tried everything else, it's time to ask a member of our own oligarchy if he will lead us in humanities greatest challenge. The Gates Foundation has done many good things including helping to tackle polio, HIV, malaria, sanitation, and much more.

The Guardian's Keep It In The Ground campaign is calling on Bill Gates to lead by pulling out of fossil fuel investment and investing in renewable energy.

Here is text of their letter to Gates:

To Bill and Melinda Gates, founders of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation; Jeremy Farrar and Sir William Castell, director and chair of the Wellcome Trust:

Your organisations have made a huge contribution to human progress and equality by supporting scientific research and development projects. Yet your investments in fossil fuels are putting this progress at great risk, by undermining your long term ambitions.

Climate change poses a real threat to all of us, and it is morally and financially misguided to invest in companies dedicated to finding and burning more oil, gas and coal. Many philanthropic organisations are divesting their endowments from fossil fuels. We ask you to do the same: to commit now to divesting from the top 200 fossil fuel companies within five years and to immediately freeze any new investments in those companies.

You can sign their petition here:

Please sign we need all the help we can get.

Discuss
Three tropical cyclones churned the waters around Australia on March 11, 2015, including Pam, which reached category 5 and devastated the south Pacific islands of Vanuatu.
Three tropical cyclones churned the waters around Australia on March 11, 2015, including Pam, which reached category 5 and devastated the south Pacific islands of Vanuatu.
In early March, the strongest wave of tropical convection ever measured (known as the Madden Julian Oscillation) by modern meteorology moved into the western Pacific from Indonesian waters bringing an outbreak of 3 tropical cyclones, including deadly category 5 Pam which ravaged the south Pacific islands of Vanuatu. This extreme outburst of tropical storms and organized thunderstorms pulled strong westerly winds across the equator, unleashing a huge surge of warm water below the ocean surface. Normally, trade winds blow warm water across the Pacific from the Americas to Australia and Indonesia, pushing up sea level in the west Pacific. When the trade winds suddenly reversed to strong westerlies, it was as if a dam burst, but on the scale of the earth's largest ocean, the Pacific. The front edge of that massive equatorial wave, called a Kelvin wave, is now coming ashore on the Americas.
A huge surge of warm water from an enormous deep equatorial wave called a Kelvin wave is now hitting the west coast of the Americas. A wave of similar size struck last year bring a massive marine die off to the west coast, but this year's marine die offs will likely be worse because climate models are predicting it will trigger a super El Nino.
Detailed research in California has found that nutrient upwelling was at a minimum in the El Nino year of 1992 and the super El Nino year of 1998. A huge surge of warm water from an enormous deep equatorial wave called a Kelvin wave is now hitting the west coast of the Americas. A wave of similar size struck last year brought a massive marine die off to the west coast, but this year's die offs will likely be global because climate models are predicting a super El Nino. Credit NOAA.
Last year the largest Kelvin wave ever seen in the Pacific ocean developed in February. After it came ashore and the surge of warm water moved up the Pacific coast, the upwelling of nutrient rich cold water dramatically slowed, and marine life began starving up and down the coast of north America. As the warm water moved north from the equator it merged with an enormous mass of warm stagnant water dubbed "the blob" which had built up in the central north Pacific ocean under the mound of high barometric pressure known as the Pacific high. Because the Pacific high had expanded north of its normal position, possibly because of climate change, warm, stagnant low nutrient water covered a large percentage of the surface of the north Pacific ocean. That stagnant water came ashore on the coast of the Pacific northwest and Alaska as the surge of warm water from the Kelvin wave moved up the California coast. The warm stagnant water lacked nutrients to support the growth of krill and copepods which are at the bottom of the food chain. Species that fed on krill and copepods had little to eat. Juvenile birds were the first to be affected by the lack of food. The west coast marine die off is already a crisis but it's likely to get much worse this summer and fall as  the surge of warm water moves up the coast from the huge Kelvin wave now coming ashore.
"The Pacific Coast saw record numbers of dead Cassin’s Auklets this winter. " Audubon.
10,000 baby sea lions dead on one California island — Experts: “It’s getting crazy… This is a crisis… Never seen anything like it… Very difficult to see so much death” — TV: “Numbers skyrocketing at alarming rates”
An unprecedented number of auklets, a tiny sea bird that dives for plankton, were found dead in fall 2014, apparently of starvation, along the west coast from California to Canada. Nutrient poor warm waters are the probable cause of the lack of food.
Last year, beginning about Halloween, thousands of juvenile auklets started washing ashore dead from California's Farallon Islands to Haida Gwaii (also known as the Queen Charlotte Islands) off central British Columbia. Since then the deaths haven't stopped. Researchers are wondering if the die-off might spread to other birds or even fish.

"This is just massive, massive, unprecedented," said Julia Parrish, a University of Washington seabird ecologist who oversees the Coastal Observation and Seabird Survey Team (COASST), a program that has tracked West Coast seabird deaths for almost 20 years. "We may be talking about 50,000 to 100,000 deaths. So far."

The warming that last year's huge Kelvin wave brought started a global coral bleaching event is likely to get much worse after this year's huge wave of warm water spreads up and down the coasts of north and south America.
“It started in 2014 – we had severe bleaching from July to October in the northern Marianas, bad bleaching in Guam, really severe bleaching in the north western Hawaiian Islands, and the first ever mass bleaching in the main Hawaiian Islands,” said said Mark Eakin, Noaa’s Coral Reef Watch coordinator.

“It then moved south, with severe bleaching in the Marshall Islands and it has moved south into many of the areas in the western south Pacific. Bleaching just now is starting in American Samoa. In Fiji we’re starting to see some, the Solomon Islands have seen some. We’ve already seen a big event."

Bleaching takes place when corals are stressed due to changes in light, nutrients or temperature – though only the latter can cause events of this magnitude. This causes them to release algae, lose their colour and in some cases die off. It is a relatively rare occurrence. Large-scale bleaching was recorded in 1983, followed by the first global scale event in 1998. A second global wave came in 2010.

NOAA's CFSv2 model is forecasting a strong El Nino event will develop this summer and continue through 2015. Warm water along the west coast, combined with weaker than normal winds caused by El Nino will prevent nutrient rich cold water from welling up along the coast. Species that depend on nutrient upwelling will face starvation. Australia's Bureau of Meteorology has an excellent El Nino forecasting model which is also predicting a strong El Nino. Because the jet stream has already gone into an El Nino pattern by moving south over the eastern Pacific ocean and Mexico and further north than normal over the eastern Atlantic ocean, the likelihood of El Nino failing to strengthen is small. Last year's Kelvin wave failed to bring on a strong El Nino because trade winds in the south Pacific didn't weaken but this year they have and waters along the west coast of south America have already warmed. The south Pacific has moved out of the cool mode it was in a year ago.
NOAA forecast of the departure from normal of Pacific ocean sea surface temperatures.
NOAA forecast of the departure from normal of Pacific ocean sea surface temperatures. NOAA's CFSv2 model predicts a strong El Nino with much above normal sea surface temperatures along the west coasts of south and north America up to January, 2016.
The forecast of a strong El Nino brings good news to California. NOAA's CFSv2 model is forecasting above well above normal precipitation for October through December, 2015. Because models are forecasting El Nino conditions to continue through January 2016 there is a good chance that heavy winter rains will break the California drought. The downside will be massive landslides and flooding in areas that have been affected by recent wild fires.
NOAA's CFSv2 model predicts heavy rains will fall in California in October to December 2015.
California is likely to get relief from the drought in November and December 2015.
Discuss
Reposted from Pakalolo by Assaf

'It's catastrophic, really. They kill 99 per cent of things they come in contact with".
David Barnes, British Antarctic Survey

An iceberg 17 miles long,  now named B-34,  cracked and broke loose from Antarctica's Getz Ice Shelf. The Getz ice shelf is roughly 300 miles long and up to 60 miles wide. Ice shelves in Antarctica have an average thickness of between 1,300 to 1,600 feet and some can extend out hundreds of miles off the coast. The Amundsen shelves are grounded on a bed that lies below sea level and several large islands are partially or wholly embedded in the ice shelf.  The Amundsen Sea ice shelves are weak and more prone to climate change. It is thought to be melting at a rate triple of what it had 10 years ago. NASA notes:

"Why is the Amundsen Sea region more at risk than other parts of West Antarctica?

In addition to the ice sheet being grounded below sea level, there are three main reasons. First, the glaciers here lack very large ice shelves to stem ice flow. Second, they aren’t "pinned" by obstructions in their beds except in a few small places, unlike the Ronne and Ross shelves which are pinned down by large islands. Third, as first observed in the 1990s, the area is vulnerable to a regional ocean current, ushered in by the shape of the sea floor and the proximity of the circumpolar deep current. This current delivers warm water to grounding lines and the undersides of ice shelves in the region."

NASA reports on the recent finding that B-34 has separated from the ice shelf:

B-34 is the 34th iceberg from the “B” quadrant of Antarctica (located between 90 degrees East and 180 degrees) to be tracked by the NIC. The new berg is still smaller, however, than the much older B-15T—a fragment of B-15 that initially broke off from the Ross Ice Shelf in March 2000.

Large icebergs can have large-scale impacts on the Southern Ocean. For example, as the bergs melt, the addition of cold, fresh water to the saltwater ocean can affect ocean currents and circulation. Researchers have shown, however, that even more fresh water comes from the melting of smaller and much more numerous bergs.

In just 17 years, icebergs have decimated the sea life near western Antarctica. In 1997 a 500 square mile section of sea bottom was studied and discovered to have colorful coral like creatures called "moss animals". These creatures filter the water for food. Upon return in 2013, the researchers discovered that all but one of these species had vanished.

CBC news reports:

As the glaciers retreat and the ice shelves collapse on the West Antarctic Peninsula, they break off into floating chunks of ice, some of them extremely massive.

Fifty years ago, icebergs couldn't move around much because most years, the sea surface was frozen for much of the year. But recently, Barnes said, most years, the sea is frozen for less than 50 days a year. That leaves the icebergs free to drift and blow in the wind until they crash boulders on the sea floor, pounding and scraping away everything that lived on them.

The animals that live on the sea floor are called benthos. Species can include sea anemones, sponges, corals, sea stars, sea urchins, worms, bivalves, crabs, and many more. These organisms grow very slowly in the ice cold water, have low levels of reproduction, colonization and growth. Ice shelves and ice bergs scour the bottom killing everything in its path. This is not good news for the southern ocean food web.

From Current Biology:

Life on Antarctica’s coastal seabed rollercoasters between food-rich, open-water, iceberg-scoured summers and food-sparse winters, when the sea surface freezes into ‘fast-ice’, locking up icebergs, reducing their seabed collisions (scouring). In the last half century, there have been massive losses of winter sea ice along the Antarctic Peninsula, as well as retreat of glaciers and disintegration of ice shelves coincident with rapid recent regional warming [1] . More calving from glaciers and ice shelves coupled with less winter ice should increase scouring of the seabed — which is where most Antarctic species live (http//www.SCAR-MarBIN.be). Polar benthos are considered highly sensitive to change, slow growing and all endemic. However, the only published effect of increased scouring on benthos has been increased mortality of the pioneer species Fenstrulina rugula, adjacent to Rothera Research station, West Antarctic Peninsula [2] (Supplemental information; Figure S1 ). It is likely that the recent increase in mortality in this species reflects the mortality of other species on hard substrata. A 2013 survey dive at a nearby locality (Lagoon Island) revealed large areas where no live mega- or macro-fauna could be found, the first time this has been observed there despite being regularly visited by scientific divers since 1997. Here, we report the first assemblage level changes coincident with increased scouring.
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Reposted from Climate Action Hub by VL Baker
Arctic sea ice melt summer 2012
Remember Arctic Ice? There's less of it every year.

Extraordinary words coming from our Secretary of State who seems to be hitting his stride. He seems born to the job and his passion for the mitigation of climate change is evident. In an interview with the Washington Post on the eve of the Arctic Summit, Kerry was brutally honest.

Acknowledging that governments may not be moving fast enough to avert a climate disaster, Secretary of State John F. Kerry is pushing for a bigger role for cities, universities and other institutions in achieving rapid cuts in ­greenhouse-gas emissions.
Unusual for a politician, Kerry is not spinning his remarks about the prospects for the climate talks coming up in Paris later this year. He doesn't seem confident that the talks will accomplish the needed remedies to avert disaster but, says they will begin the process - the rest is up to us.
The goal of the talks is to slow the growth of carbon in the atmosphere to keep Earth’s temperature from rising more than two degrees Celsius — 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit — above the global average for the past century. ­Kerry in the past has expressed his pessimism about the willingness of governments to agree to the kinds of cuts in fossil-fuel burning needed to keep temperatures from soaring beyond the two-degree mark.

“We’re not meeting that goal, and it bothers me immensely,” Kerry said in the interview. At best, he said, any climate pact reached in Paris would be a “down payment” toward a solution that protects Earth’s climate. But, he added, a strong agreement could create momentum by sending a signal to energy markets and corporations to accelerate the shift to climate-friendly technologies.

So as we continue to advocate for policy solutions, we should also get busy in our communities to help develop resiliency plans and adaptations at the local level. Part of those plans must be transitioning our personal carbon footprints to become a part of the solution to mitigating the worst effects of climate change.
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Reposted from Meteor Blades by Agathena
rain
More of these will be part of global warming's impacts, scientists predict.
The name of the study by Erich M. Fischer and Reto Knutti is a mouthful—"Anthropogenic contribution to global occurrence of heavy-precipitation and high-temperature extremes." Translation: global warming is causing weather extremes. Just as scientists have been predicting for at least a quarter century.

While this isn't the first study to make such a connection between extreme weather events and global warming, Fischer and Knutti are the first to forecast how those extremes may be transformed by future global warming. Not a pretty picture.

The authors acknowledge that it is challenging to tie a specific extreme weather event to human-caused global warming effects. This is so in part because of deficiencies in climate models and observational uncertainty. But the study's authors are confident of their fresh methodology. They used "computer analyses of what the climate would be like if the Industrial Revolution had never happened," Justin Gillis reports:

The moderate global warming that has already occurred as a result of human emissions has quadrupled the frequency of certain heat extremes since the Industrial Revolution, scientists reported Monday, and they warned that a failure to bring greenhouse gases under control could eventually lead to a 62-fold increase in such heat blasts.

The planetary warming has had a more moderate effect on intense rainstorms, the scientists said, driving up their frequency by 22 percent since the 19th century. Yet such heavy rains could more than double later this century if emissions continue at a high level, they said.

Many people point out that weather extremes are nothing new, and Fischer agrees. But, as he points out in an interview about the study published Monday in the journal Nature Climate Change, "[T]he odds have changed, and we get more of them.”

He and Knutti conclude:

Already today 75% of the moderate hot extremes and about 18% of the moderate precipitation extremes occurring worldwide are attributable to warming, of which the dominant part is extremely likely to be anthropogenic. The fraction increases nonlinearly with further warming such that the probability of hot extremes at 2°C, for example, is double that at 1.5°C global warming. With every degree of warming it is the rarest and the most extreme events—and thereby the ones with typically the highest socio-economic impacts—for which the largest fraction is due to human-induced greenhouse gas emissions.
Currently, tropical island nations, "which typically have high vulnerability and low adaptive capacities," face the worst impacts. For now.
Discuss

Mon Apr 27, 2015 at 08:27 AM PDT

The Lusty Meatless Monday

by VL Baker

Reposted from Meatless Advocates Meetup by VL Baker

Who knew that the easiest and most effective way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (pdf) to slow the worst effects of climate change could also be your simplest route to a lusty, sexy you.

It makes sense. When you feel and look your best you radiate sexuality and that is just what a healthy meatless diet does for you (and me)

In his new book, The Lusty Vegan, Chef Ayinde Howell, founder of the popular website IEatGrass.com, lets us in on the now not so secret news. The book talks about navigating the awkward moments in relationships between vegetarians and meat eaters with humor and includes lots of delicious recipes.

Meatless Monday

As part of Earth Week, Access Hollywood Live co-hosts Kit Hoover and Billy Bush invited Chef Ayinde Howell, founder and publisher of the award-winning iEatGrass.com. to show how he creates delicious meatless versions of traditional meals for Meatless Monday.

Chef Ayinde began by cooking up a traditional meatloaf using tofu, with lentils added for texture, and oats to bind it together, plus onions, dijon mustard catsup, and a few other ingredients for flavor. One smart tip he suggested was shaping them into mini-meatloafs to make them more attractive to kids. Billy Bush, a self-proclaimed ‘heavy carnivore’ decided to be the guinea pig and took the first taste. He gave the meatloaf top marks, as did Kit Hoover. You can see the recipe here.

Chef Ayinde said the simple recipe would be about 40% less expensive than if you used beef. While the savings are significant, the focus of the segment was how Meatless Monday benefits the planet, and Billy Bush shared an important statistic:

Over a year, if your four-person family skips meat once a week, it’s like taking your car off the road for five weeks.
Watch the segment with Chef Ayinde below:

Below the meatloaf recipe courtesy of Meatless Monday. This is really good. Make sure to drain your tofu very well for a good textured loaf.

CLASSIC TOFU LOAF

    1 tbsp. grapeseed or safflower oil
    14 ounces firm tofu, well-drained
    1 cup cooked french lentils or use brown
    1 1/2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
    1/2 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
    1/2 cup chopped onion
    1 tsp. minced garlic
    1/2 cup ketchup
    1/4 cup Dijon mustard
    1/4 cup barbecue sauce
    1/4 cup low-sodium wheat-free tamari
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    For garnish: ketchup; chopped fresh parsley

Preheat the oven to 350F. Grease a 9×5-inch loaf pan with the oil and set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, crumble the tofu into bite-size pieces. Add the lentils and the oats and mix well. Stir in the parsley, onion, and garlic. Add the ketchup, mustard, barbecue sauce, tamari, and salt. Mix well, until all ingredients are incorporated.

Press the mixture evenly into the prepared pan. Bake for 30 minutes.

Serve garnished with ketchup and fresh parsley.

 

Discuss
Reposted from Lefty Coaster by Lefty Coaster

The Koch funded Heartland Institute is sending some of its industry compliant scientists to Rome to correct Pope Francis ideas about Global Warming.

Koch-backed group sending ‘real scientists’ to school Pope Francis about ‘Biblical duty’ to pollute

The libertarian Heartland Institute — perhaps best known for working alongside cigarette manufacturers to question the dangers of second-hand smoke — will host a workshop featuring two “real scientists” Tuesday in Rome ahead of a Vatican summit on the environment, although the group neglected to identify its scientists.

Pope Francis plans to issue an encyclical letter this summer that will address environmental issues, and very likely climate change — which could make the issue a moral and religious concern for Christians worldwide.

The Vatican summit will feature UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon and Harvard economist Jeffrey Sachs – who the conservative group complained ignore “abundant data showing human greenhouse gas emissions are not causing a climate crisis.”

They said proposed international regulations on airborne pollutants would amount to “a radical reordering of global economies that will cause massive reductions in human freedom and prosperity.”

“The Holy Father is being misled by ‘experts’ at the United Nations who have proven unworthy of his trust,” said Joseph Bast, president of the Heartland Institute. “Humans are not causing a climate crisis on God’s Green Earth – in fact, they are fulfilling their Biblical duty to protect and use it for the benefit of humanity..."

The Kochs are doing the Lord's work! They embody human prosperity! Why can't Pope Francis see that?  
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Reposted from Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse by Onomastic

from 2015 White House Correspondents' Association Dinner: You won't wanna miss this!

full video here

Full transcript of President Obama’s White House Correspondents’ Association dinner toast

some more laughs!

Obama also reminded the chuckling audience that Texas Senator Ted Cruz recently denied the man-made causes of global warming: "Ted Cruz said that denying the existence of climate change made him like Galileo."

"Galileo believed the earth revolved around the sun," the president continued, leading to a punch line. "Ted Cruz believes the earth revolves around Ted Cruz."

Anyway, it’s amazing how time flies. Soon, the first presidential contest will take place, and I for one cannot wait to see who the Koch brothers pick. It’s exciting. Marco Rubio, Rand Paul, Ted Cruz, Jeb Bush, Scott Walker, who will finally get that red rose?

The winner gets a billion dollar war chest. The runner-up gets to be the bachelor on the next season of “The Bachelor.”
 

Discuss
Reposted from Seattle & Puget Sound Kos by John Crapper Editor's Note: Important issue and initiative for Washington State. -- John Crapper

Calling on Washington State Kossacks to put some adrenaline into the mix.  It's time.

Time for a carbon tax reality check: There are only two carbon pricing policies on the table in Washington State. One of them is Governor Inslee's climate bill in Olympia. The other is CarbonWA's  "relief pitcher" carbon tax ballot measure, Initiative to the Legislature #732.

The most important thing we can do as progressives for either one of them is to contribute our strength and our voice to the Carbon Washington campaign.

But don't take my word for it.  Read what Rep Joe Fitzgibbon, the Chair of the Washington State Environmental Committee and a former guest last year at our Seattle & Puget Sound Kos meet up, recently said:

... administration officials, House representatives and even representation from the GOP Senate caucus have been meeting almost daily to discuss the possibility of reviving Inslee’s dormant proposal. It would require Washington’s 80 to 90 biggest polluters to pay for the right to produce specific amounts of carbon emissions, which scientists have linked to global warming.
...legislators have looked at signature gathering by the group Carbon Washington to put Initiative 732 on the 2016 ballot. I-732 would install a $25-per-ton tax on carbon emissions beginning July 1, 2017.

The prospect of a blunt initiative rather than a more nuanced bill has prompted legislators to huddle about Inslee’s carbon emissions tax proposal, said Fitzgibbon.

CarbonWA is starting to light a fire under our legislature.  I think we should help add fuel to that fire - a lot of fuel.  Personally, I'd like to see both CarbonWA's initiative and Governor Inslee's cap and trade proposal succeed, but regardless I want to see the temperature continue to be increased on this issue!  The time is now!  

How can we help?  Well, first and foremost we can contribute to their efforts.  

Check out the heartwarming crowdfunding video.

Already they've raised over $5,000 in small donations (75 so far, none greater than $500). We can help by donating $22 in honor of Earth Day, or $150 to get a t-shirt, or $250 to get a t-shirt and a signed copy of Yoram Bauman's Cartoon Climate Change book.

Follow below the orange hairpiece to find out about other ways to help.  Thanks!

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