Planet Watch

Glimmer of hope: SUV sales down

This may be bad news for Detroit, but given fast-growing evidence of global climate destabilization, it's damn good news for the rest of us. From the New York Times Nov. 2:

DETROIT, Nov. 1 - October, which is the start of the new model year, used to be a month for the auto industry to celebrate. This year, it was a month for Detroit to forget.

Big oil rakes in historic profits, keeps alternative energy off market

While the idiot left is busy blaming the Jews, the people who really run the planet are laughing all the way to the bank.

Big oil rakes in historic profits
While drivers have been paying up at the pump, profit has been gushing in to oil companies.

Thursday, ExxonMobil became the starkest example yet of how much big oil companies benefited from the huge run-up in oil prices in the third quarter even as two hurricanes ripped through the industry's Gulf Coast infrastructure. Exxon reported:

2005 warming record hinges on Siberia

2005 will be the second or third warmest year globally on record. The prediction comes as climate concerns build among people in polar and low-lying areas and in the insurance and utility industries. "Whether it is second or third depends on how Siberia reacts between now and the end of the year," said Wayne Elliott, a spokesman for Britain's weather service, the Met Office. "1998 was the warmest ever, 2005 is looking at being second. It will be another very warm year generally, which is in line with global climate change research."

Bicycle sales overtake cars

More bicycles than cars were sold in the United States over the past 12 months the US Chamber of Commerce reports, with rising gas prices prompting commuters to opt for two wheels instead of four. Not since the oil crisis of 1973 have bicycles sold in such big numbers, according to Tim Blumenthal, executive director of Bikes Belong, a Colorado-based industry association.

Oil shock: denial in the New York Times

The new resident reactionary on the New York Times op-ed page, John Tierney, boasts in his Aug. 23 column, entitled "The $10,000 Question," that he has made a five-grand wager with Matthew Simmons, author of Twilight in the Desert: The Coming Saudi Oil Shock and the World Economy, against the latter's predictions quoted in the Aug. 21 Sunday Times Magazine ("The Breaking Point" by Peter Maass) that oil prices will hit the triple digits by 2011.

Siberian permafrost melting

An Aug. 11 story from NewScientist.com notes recent findings by scientists that the world's largest frozen peat bog is melting. An area stretching for a million square kilometres across the permafrost of western Siberia is turning into a mass of shallow lakes as the ground melts, according to Russian researchers just back from the region. The sudden melting of a bog the size of France and Germany combined could unleash billions of tons of methane, a potent greenhouse gas, into the atmosphere.

Hiroshima Peace Declaration: nuclear powers "jeopardize human survival"

The annual Hiroshima Peace Declaration, delivered this year by the city's Mayor Tadatoshi Akiba, explicitly calls the nuclear powers to task for not living up to their committments under the Non-Proliferation Treaty. The historic 60th anniversary of the dawn of the nuclear age comes just two months after the UN conference on the treaty ended in dischord and paralysis. As we noted in 2002, the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists "Doomsday Clock" moved forward two minutes that year in response to rising world tensions and lagging support for disarmament efforts. The clock now stands at seven minutes to midnight—the same position as when it debuted in 1947.

Antarctic ice shelf collapse "unprecedented"

From Scientific American, Aug. 4:

In the spring of 2002, a large chunk of the Larsen B ice shelf (LIS-B) on the Antarctic Peninsula broke off and tumbled into the Weddell Sea. A new analysis published today in the journal Nature suggests that the more than 3,200 square kilometer area that collapsed signifies an unprecedented loss in the past 10,000 years and can be attributed to accelerated climate warming in the region.

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