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  • By Alexandra King

    Scientist and astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson said Sunday that, in the wake of devastating floods and damage caused by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, climate change had become so severe that […]

    • What is lacking here, is the “faith” in the honesty of the people that work on climate and on science in general. That’s the point. If you doubt the “purpose”, the honesty of those people you do not believe the information they provide. And thus you seek new information, probably information that suits better your view of the world: creationism, conspiracies of any kind, and so on. So how can people think to benefit from something they see as not true? It’s impossible. Experience tells me than in the face of climate change devastating effects, we will continue to see people saying that is a Chinese hoax.

    • We barely understand objective reality. Most of our scientific models are overly simplistic and have no predictive value whatsoever. Thanks to NOAA, NASA and others we will be observing (what else can we do but observe?).

      All and any discussion on climate change should include the causes of the last 4 periods of glaciation and the subsequent interglacials.

      Preparing for the conséquences of climate change therefore seems to be the only realistic public policy to uphold. Anything else is delusional.

      GL

    • we will continue to see Americans saying that is a Chinese hoax.

      Clarified.

      Preparing for the consequences of climate change therefore seems to be the only realistic public policy to uphold.

      Yet CO2 IS a greenhouse gas and no longer producing it will help soften the blow of climate change and further solve the inevitable problem of sustainability and provide an indefinite, stable supply of energy aaaand fix our urban air quality (still getting more lethal).

      Your narrow solution, Guy, is typical of the under-informed American take on the issues. The problem of crap high school education, media and politicians owned by big business, makes the American stance here, well… standout.

    • @phil rimmer – look, dude, I am italian and I can tell you that even though we do not see it as a Chinese hoax, we take what climatologists say as nonsense. Because “scientists have always predicted the end of the world and nothing so far has happened”. Typical way to say that we do not care about climate changing. I see not difference in the attitude of those who see climate change as a hoax and those that say it’s bullshit. That’s why I wrote “people” instead of “Americans” 🙂

    • donnie86dc #7
      Sep 19, 2017 at 4:11 pm

      I am italian and I can tell you that even though we do not see it as a Chinese hoax, we take what climatologists say as nonsense.

      To claim that what “climatologists say as nonsense” is an expression of pure ignorance of the subject. A whole range of key predictions have been approximately correct, and the mapping of the global climate, is thousands of times more accurate than ever before.

      Because “scientists have always predicted the end of the world and nothing so far has happened”.

      Actually, that is not correct. The reports of the “end of the world” have come from sensationalist journalists, and reports of cherry picked wildly speculative scientists being given undue prominence for the purpose of promoting newspaper sales and viewing figures.

      Typical way to say that we do not care about climate changing. I see not difference in the attitude of those who see climate change as a hoax and those that say it’s bullshit.

      There have always been those in societies who are too stupid to heed expert warnings, and quite often they become very smug when they happen to get lucky! (“See! I ignored the hurricane / tsunami / wild-fire / bomb-scare / volcanic eruption /avalanche, evacuation warning and I’m OK”) – Of course we don’t hear from the ones who ignored it and are now dead!

    • donnie86dc #7
      Sep 19, 2017 at 4:11 pm

      I see not difference in the attitude of those who see climate change as a hoax and those that say it’s bullshit.

      Anyone who says that the recorded measurements of decades global temperature rises, ocean acidification, expanding deserts, rising levels of atmospheric CO2, or the loss of hundreds of cubic miles of polar ice is bullshit, is simply clueless!

    • Sorry, Donnie, I was right. Big emitters and the poorly educated are the least concerned with the effects of imminent climate change. Europe (more than the UK) and Italians more than any are concerned and so the least likely to call hoax. You really don’t speak for Italians.

      Immediacy of Climate Change Worries Latin Americans, Europeans Most

      The Chinese hoax thing is a particularly American bit of fake news, hence my accurate observation.

    • donnie86dc #7
      Sep 19, 2017 at 4:11 pm

      we take what climatologists say as nonsense.

      Climatologists have been saying for some years now, that a warming climate and more energetic atmosphere, will lead to more powerful storms, with stronger winds, bigger tidal surges, and capable of carrying and dumping much more water out of them as heavier rains and bigger floods.
      They also say more evaporation on land will cause more droughts!

      It will be interesting to see how hard they have to be hit by the climate before the denials are shaken!

    • Donnie there is a comment for you but seemingly in the spam filter…

    • Alan4discussion #8
      Sep 19, 2017 at 5:20 pm
      To claim that what “climatologists say as nonsense” is an expression of pure ignorance of the subject.

      That’s the power of the internet, Alan. Everyone says something because everyone can say something. But, apart from this, yes, is a stupefying display of ignorance, especially on the part of people that have no experience on the subject. There is an Italian physicist, he wrote one book (one!), like 17 years ago, about climate change, in which he wrote that there is no evidence for human responsibility. Now, 17 years ago I was well aware of the problem of climate change, even though I was 14. And I was worried. Nowadays people still consider that book and its conclusions to say that climate change is not heavily triggered by our activities. A book written by a physicist (!), that has published zero papers on climate in his carreer: not a climatologist, a physicist! It’s like going to the ophthalmologist to cure the diarrhea. When I reply by saying that no matter what the reputation of the man is, he’s not a climatologist and he has never run a single experiment or model about the subject, I read responses that make my hair grey. For the majority, people has not the faintest idea of how science works. But they feel entitled to say that one physicist can provide the truth where hundreds of climatologists say the opposite.

      Actually, that is not correct. The reports of the “end of the world” have come from sensationalist journalists, and reports of cherry picked wildly speculative scientists being given undue prominence for the purpose of promoting newspaper sales and viewing figures.

      Journalists in the last couple of decades has wreck havoc in the information landscape, at least in Italy. The quality of the information has worsened by a lot. Even important newspapers publish trash things and it’s difficult for normal people to have an idea of what’s going on, for example, on vaccines. In Italy, the share of parents that vaccinates their children is dangerously reaching the minimum amount to guarantee the “herd immunity”. People are convinced that there is a link between autism and vaccines and are terrified to loose their children. Virologists and doctors all over the country are literally fighting to convince people that it’s all a bunch of b*llshit. The phenomenon is growing and I am really worried about the future of our children. The damage done to biotechnology, agriculture, medicine and Earth Sciences (a group of geologists was convicted few years ago, unbelievable) is enormous and I can’t believe what I read. Not for nothing, mine is the country where people believe in the miracle of Saint Gennaro, miracle that is repeated every year in front of hundreds of people. I mean, Middle Age in plain view. Why do I marvel at the ignorance in science?

      Climatologists have been saying for some years now, that a warming climate and more energetic atmosphere, will lead to more powerful storms, with stronger winds, bigger tidal surges, and capable of carrying and dumping much more water out of them as heavier rains and bigger floods.
      They also say more evaporation on land will cause more droughts!
      It will be interesting to see how hard they have to be hit by the climate before the denials are shaken!

      That’s precisely what I say every time I find in a middle of discussions about man-induced v natural climate change. A list of predictions that we are seeing coming true in front of our very eyes. Italy is already going under a processo of partial desertification in some small parts of the South as result of the climate that is more and more like that of the near Africa. And we are facing similar droughts to that that I have seen in California. Water shortening are becoming the norm in a country that has always been rich in water. At this pace, agriculture will soon follow, and we will have problems of food production as well.
      But all of this, to those that say that climate change is “natural” because “the climate has always shifted in time”, is nothing worth worrying. It’s frustrating to me to come to the conclusion that there is no worse deaf man than the one who doesn’t want to hear.

      What can we do when people are ignorant and defend their own ignorance with pride?

    • phil rimmer #11
      Sep 19, 2017 at 8:39 pm
      Donnie there is a comment for you but seemingly in the spam filter…

      Uh, is there a way to read it? I do not see it anywhere!

    • It should reappear once a moderator returns to the site, east coast USA work time.

      It argued I was right to identify the “Chinese hoax” as a mostly American phenomenon. I linked to data showing other countries anyway cared more about about the immediate impact of change than the USA (and the UK). In fact Italians were the most caring and rational.

      Excellent comment at #13. (though it might increment to 14 if my comment gets rescued…)

    • Dan #15
      Sep 20, 2017 at 3:19 am

      While there is some ambiguity in the post, I think Donnie is quoting the views of deniers, rather than stating his own.

      @#7 look, dude, I am italian

      Could be a language issue as with some of Maria’s posts.

      • Alan (#21)

        Yes, that’s how we read Donnie’s posts too. He’s made it quite clear that he personally accepts climate change. He’s just relaying the attitudes he frequently encounters in Italy, largely as an argument against the notion that it’s just an American phenomenon.

        We have removed the inappropriate section from Dan’s post.

        The mods

    • Alan. I think there was some misunderstanding, but I was addressing only the hoax idea. I hope Donnie is delighted his countrymen are ahead of the rest of us in reason, though maybe knowing so much stupid still abounds that could make it depressing still…

    • ‘Fraid so, Olgun! If it’s any consolation, it does it to us, too.

      We’ve retrieved your post now 🙂

    • Olgun #22
      Sep 20, 2017 at 7:10 am

      Are we preparing for the worst or is there some denial that we can actually fix this problem and and we should be preparing instead.

      I think we can still avoid worst-case scenarios, but there will be parts of the planet where the territories will have to written off – at least for the purposes for which they are used at present, and problems for human and other populations, having to adapt to new situations such as:- droughts, desertification, increased seasonal flooding, tropical pests and diseases, following the climate towards the poles, climate-forced migrations sparking off conflicts and wars – and such like.

    • Apparently not, Olgun. Sorry.

    • test

    • Whooa, it seems that a lot happened yesterday while I was away! I am sorry if I resulted unclear with my statements but, yes,

      Moderator #23

      Sep 20, 2017 at 7:11 am

      that’s how we read Donnie’s posts too. He’s made it quite clear that he personally accepts climate change. He’s just relaying the attitudes he frequently encounters in Italy, largely as an argument against the notion that it’s just an American phenomenon.

      that was the way my post was supposed to be read. Again, I am sorry. I do my best to write in your language, but I have a lot of practice to do before I can say “my English is good”.

      phil rimmer #16

      Sep 20, 2017 at 3:24 am

      It should reappear once a moderator returns to the site, east coast USA work time.

      Ok, now I see the post. Interesting. I will read the pewglobal.org article, I am curious. I could change my mind about my fellow Italians. My experience comprises talks with different people, from the church goers to the post-doc at the university. And, even though there are people concerned with the phenomenon, especially people that work in my field (food production) and in agriculture, lots of people, as I said are not concerned at all by climate change, nor they think about the impact of the transfer of carbon into the atmosphere.
      That state of things makes me nervous.
      Thank you to all the people that answered me!

    • Dan #15

      I have not read you reply as it has been removed by the moderators (I suppose from the successive comments). However, thank you for the links and for the list of references that you provided.

    • donnie86dc #29
      Sep 20, 2017 at 1:13 pm

      Again, I am sorry. I do my best to write in your language, but I have a lot of practice to do before I can say “my English is good”.

      Don’t worry about it. This site is international, and you are not the only one posting in English as a second language.

      And, even though there are people concerned with the phenomenon, especially people that work in my field (food production) and in agriculture,

      Those involved in agriculture should be particularly concerned as the with warming and the climate belts moving from the tropics towards the poles, the North African climate seems to be moving into southern Europe.

      There have been droughts, wild-fires, and instances of tropical diseases crossing the Mediterranean.

      Around 700 tourists have been rescued by boat from wildfires in Sicily, as swathes of southern Italy battle blazes.

      Italy has three chikungunya fever cases in Anzio

      A four-year-old Italian girl has died of cerebral malaria in northern Italy, a region free of the disease,

    • Donnie,

      I think we can agree people are not concerned anywhere near enough about climate change… even the Italians. But the Italians should be least ashamed.

      It is great to have your thoughts on these matters and your perspectives from Italy, Europe and food production.

      Your English is excellent. Me? I’m a little bit Aspergers and misapprehend other people’s intentions sometimes as I did with you initially…apologies. So, the problem is not with Italians yet again.

    • Alan4discussion #31
      Sep 20, 2017 at 1:38 pm

      Those involved in agriculture should be particularly concerned as the with warming and the climate belts moving from the tropics towards the poles, the North African climate seems to be moving into southern Europe.
      There have been droughts, wild-fires, and instances of tropical diseases crossing the Mediterranean.

      Yes. Especially wildfires. This year has been terrible, far worse than previous years.

      Around 700 tourists have been rescued by boat from wildfires in Sicily, as swathes of southern Italy battle blazes.

      Italy has three chikungunya fever cases in Anzio
      A four-year-old Italian girl has died of cerebral malaria in northern Italy, a region free of the disease,

      In these two cases, different newspapers (and politicians of course) are blaming immigrants. I will not put down the “logic” of their reasoning, because there is no logic but just huge, staggering levels of ignorance. Immigrants are the problem, for these people, and not the changing climate. I know nothing about how to affect the public opinion about any subject that has importance on society, but spreading lies like this, instead of focusing on the most probable culprits of such phenomena is criminal and to me affects hugely the perception that people have about climate and science in general, shifting its attention to false problems. That’s one of the reasons why I stated such things about Italians. Maybe I have a distorted vision of the common perception about climate change, but I see and read things that are creepy almost on a daily basis.

    • phil rimmer #32
      Sep 20, 2017 at 1:45 pm
      Donnie,
      I think we can agree people are not concerned anywhere near enough about climate change even the Italians. But the Italians should be least ashamed.

      Yes, we can agree about the first point. And, from the information that you gave to me, also on the second point, regarding the Italians. 😛

      It is great to have your thoughts on these matters and your perspectives from Italy, Europe and food production.

      Yes, I would really like to work on food safety, because it is the subject that will be affected the most and in the first place by climate change (it already is, especially for corn and cereals that are the “battlefield” between us and the mycotoxin-producing fungi). Food security too will become an issue if we do nothing: in this case GMOs can help a lot and I am among those that think GMOs could help Italian agriculture to fight the drawbacks of climate change, at least for a period.

      Your English is excellent. Me? Im a little bit Aspergers and misapprehend other peoples intentions sometimes as I did with you initiallyapologies. So, the problem is not with Italians yet again.

      No apologies needed, Phil. It happens to me too, and several times I should add, to misapprehend what other say. 😉

    • Donnie, Ciao,

      Yes I made a careless error. Very grateful indeed to the Mods that they removed that top part. (I guess the rest may be of use to others.)

      But is is fair to generalize about Italy or the US even? Ignorance and stubborn is ignorance and stubbornness. In some places you might see more; in others, less; but that’s not an Italian thing or an American thing, is it? Seek out a higher class of people and you will get a different perspective, I would think. If you go to the comments section of a political video on YouTube over here you’ll find a lot of vitriol and hate. Go to a play, concert, or a museum, in a fashionable or nice part of town, and you’ll meet a different type of crowd. Seek and you shall find what you’re looking for. But looking down on or criticizing a whole people is too easy and pointless – unless one can make a case that a sizable percentage of a given country has been infected with the disease of denial. But this has nothing to with being Italian or American; ignorance is universal, as are the causes – whatever they may be.

    • Donnie, Ciao,

      Yes I made a careless error. Very grateful indeed to the Mods that they removed that top part. (I guess the rest may be of use to others.)

      This comment is a general one as I assume everyone here knows this: Ignorance and stubborn is ignorance and stubbornness. In some places you might see more; in others, less; but that’s not an Italian thing or an American thing. Seek out a higher class of people and you will get a different perspective, I would think. If you go to the comments section of a political video on YouTube over here you’ll find a lot of vitriol and hate. Go to a play, concert, or a museum, in a fashionable or nice part of town, and you’ll meet a different type of crowd. Seek and you shall find what you’re looking for. But looking down on or criticizing a whole people is too easy and pointless – unless one can make a case that a sizable percentage of a given country has been infected with the disease of denial (which is created and nourished by the oil companies). But this has nothing to with being Italian or Russian or American or whatever; ignorance of truth, disdain for evidence, ignorance – willful or otherwise – is universal, and has many causes. There are powerful people in positions of great power that have a vested interest in that lack of concern and ignorance; they literally manufacture denial and they benefit, profit from it.

      While the poorly educated may be the “least likely to be concerned”, they are the most likely victims of brainwashing (propaganda), which comes from the top. The problem of science denial is one of greed and mania for profit. I have argued before that Pruitt (an opponent of the EPA who now leads the EPA, Donnie) is well-aware of the science; and if he isn’t it is not because he is poorly educated; it is because he is a psychopath (to use one of my friend Phil’s favorite words).

    • Donnie, Ciao,

      Yes I made a careless error. Very grateful indeed to the Mods that they removed that top part. (I guess the rest may be of use to others.)

      This comment is a general one as I assume everyone here knows this: Ignorance and stubbornness is ignorance and stubbornness. In some places you might see more; in others, less; but that’s not an Italian thing or an American thing. Seek out a higher class of people and you will get a different perspective, I would think. If you go to the comments section of a political video on YouTube over here you’ll find a lot of vitriol and hate. Go to a play, concert, or a museum, in a fashionable or nice part of town, and you’ll meet a different type of crowd. Seek and you shall find what you’re looking for. But looking down on or criticizing a whole people is too easy and pointless – unless one can make a case that a sizable percentage of a given country has been infected with the disease of denial (which is created and nourished by the oil companies). But this has nothing to with being Italian or Russian or American or whatever; ignorance of truth, disdain for evidence, ignorance – willful or otherwise – is universal, and has many causes. There are powerful people in positions of great power that have a vested interest in that lack of concern and ignorance; they literally manufacture denial and they benefit, profit from it.

      While the poorly educated may be the “least likely to be concerned”, it is clearly not because they are inherently less concerned with the health and survival of the species that they themselves represent, are members of; they are simply the most likely to be manipulated by propaganda, which comes from the top. The problem of science denial is one of greed and mania for profit. I have argued before that Pruitt (an opponent of the EPA who now leads the EPA, Donnie) is well-aware of the science; and if he isn’t it is not because he is poorly educated; it is because he is a psychopath (to use one of my friend Phil’s favorite words).

    • Donnie, Ciao,

      Yes I made a careless error. Very grateful indeed to the Mods that they removed that top part. (I guess the rest may be of use to others.)

      This comment is a general and obvious one one and I assume that everyone that has already contributed here knows this: Ignorance and stubbornness is ignorance and stubbornness. In some places you might see more; in others, less; but that’s not an Italian thing or an American thing. Seek out a higher class of people and you will get a different perspective, I would think. If you go to the comments section of a political video on YouTube over here you’ll find a lot of vitriol and hate. Go to a play, concert, or a museum, in a fashionable or nice part of town, and you’ll meet a different type of crowd. Seek and you shall find what you’re looking for. But looking down on or criticizing a whole people is too easy and pointless – unless one can make a case that a sizable percentage of a given country has been infected with the disease of denial (which is created and nourished by the big oil companies and those who are in close cooperation with them). But this has nothing to with being Italian or Russian or American or whatever; ignorance of truth, disdain for evidence, ignorance – willful or otherwise – is universal, and has many causes. There are powerful people in positions of great power that have a vested interest in that lack of concern and ignorance; they literally manufacture denial and they benefit, profit from it.

      While the poorly educated may be the “least likely to be concerned”, it is clearly not because they are inherently less concerned with the health and survival of the species that they themselves represent, are members of; they are simply the most likely to be manipulated by propaganda, which comes from the top. The problem of science denial is one of greed and mania for profit. I have argued before that Pruitt (an opponent of the EPA who now leads the EPA, Donnie) is well-aware of the science; and if he isn’t it is not because he is poorly educated; it is because he is a psychopath (to use one of my friend Phil’s favorite words).

    • Donnie, Ciao,

      Yes I made a careless error. Very grateful indeed to the Mods that they removed that top part. (I guess the rest may be of use to others.)

      This comment is a general and obvious one and I assume that everyone that has contributed here thus far knows this: Ignorance and stubbornness is ignorance and stubbornness. In some places you might see more; in others, less; but that’s not an Italian thing or an American thing. Seek out a higher class of people and you will get a different perspective, I would think. If you go to the comments section of a political video on YouTube over here you’ll find a lot of vitriol and hate. Go to a play, concert, or a museum, in a fashionable or nice part of town, and you’ll meet a different type of crowd. Seek and you shall find what you’re looking for. But looking down on or criticizing a whole people is too easy and pointless – unless one can make a case that a sizable percentage of a given country has been infected with the disease of denial (which is created and nourished by the big oil companies and those who are in close cooperation with them). But this has nothing to with being Italian or Russian or French or Chinese or American or whatever; ignorance of truth, disdain for evidence, ignorance – willful or otherwise – is universal, and has many causes. There are powerful people in positions of great power that have a vested interest in that lack of concern and ignorance; they literally manufacture denial and they benefit, profit from it.

      While the poorly educated may be the “least likely to be concerned”, it is clearly not because they are inherently less concerned with the health and survival of the species that they themselves represent, are members of; they are simply the most likely to be manipulated by propaganda, which comes from the top. The problem of science denial is one of greed and mania for profit. I have argued before that Pruitt (an opponent of the EPA who now leads the EPA, Donnie) is well-aware of the science; and if he isn’t it is not because he is poorly educated; it is because he is a psychopath (to use one of my friend Phil’s favorite words).

    • The same with healthcare. (Good analogy.) I can’t imagine that the poorly educated are less concerned about getting sick and not being covered. But they are against Obama’s Affordable Care Act because they have been influenced by conservative propaganda.

      One of my bad habits (correcting sentences that no one cares about):

      Inelegant sentence: …ignorance of truth, disdain for evidence, ignorance – willful or otherwise – is universal, and has many causes. There are powerful people in positions of great power that have a vested interest in that lack of concern and ignorance…

      Better sentence: …ignorance of truth, disdain for evidence, ignorance in general – willful or otherwise, is universal, and has many causes. There are people in positions of great power that have a vested interest in that lack of concern and ignorance…