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Sprinkles from the Left

⏰🚀 Ready, Set, Go: These opinions take 1.65 minutes to read.

“We are already paying for decades of government inaction on the accelerating climate crisis through crop losses, social disruption and severely damaged homes, and infrastructure built on the assumption of a stable climate. These costs are likely to worsen without action, as a recent U.N. report makes clear.

But there’s another serious cost that’s hard to quantify: the profound toll of climate change on public health…

According to NOAA, in 2020 the United States suffered a record 22 events causing damage to property, crops and infrastructure of at least $1 billion…

Scant data has meant no one is calculating the total health costs of these worsening problems. Therefore, the true financial wreckage inflicted by climate disasters is likely much higher than government statistics suggest…

[Our research team] recently estimated the health costs of a fraction of climate-sensitive events by analyzing public data from 10 U.S. disasters… We uncovered more than $10 billion in health-related expenses from about 900 deaths, 17,000 emergency room visits and 20,000 hospitalizations in 2012…

Sadly, even that price tag is a vast underestimate because of the scarce accounting of the human toll of climate-fueled disasters…

The science is clear. The health harms and costs of climate change are here today, and they will escalate if we fail to address their root cause: our burning of coal, oil and gas…

We need resolute leadership in Washington, backed by strong support across the country, so that we and future generations can live healthy, safe and prosperous lives. The costs of continued delay and inaction are far too high.”

Vijay Limaye is a climate and health scientist at the Science Center at the Natural Resources Defense Council. (Published in The Washington Post - $)

“If the abstract nature of climate change excuses some of our lack of action to reduce carbon emissions, this summer should shatter that excuse. We are living in the world that was envisioned in past IPCC reports. Extreme heat waves like those that have rocked the U.S. West and extreme rain events that caused catastrophic floods in Europe and China are made worse by high carbon dioxide levels. The events we are seeing this summer were avoidable. They are consequences of the choices that we made since the first IPCC report…

Our pattern is that we don’t act until we begin to feel pain. Climate change is now part of our lived experience, and that experience is getting more painful. The latest IPCC report makes it clear that a high carbon future will move from painful to crushing.

It is not too late for us to act. We have the technology to reduce carbon emissions in time to limit warming to something close to 1.5 degrees Celsius. Keeping global temperatures close to this level would avoid many of the most dire predictions in the latest report.”

Andrew Pershing, director of Climate Science at Climate Central. (Published in The Hill)

Sprinkles from the Right

⏰🚀 Ready, Set, Go: These opinions take 1.57 minutes to read.

“The media say that natural disasters are a result of climate change and we need to adopt radical policies to combat them.

But this framing tells only a small part of what is scientifically known. Take the recent flooding in Germany and Belgium, which many, including German Chancellor Angela Merkel, are blaming on climate change. Yet a new study of more than 10,000 rivers around the world shows that most rivers now flood less…

But of course, blaming the deadly floods on climate change instead of taking responsibility for the missed early warnings is convenient for politicians like Ms. Merkel…

Similarly, climate change is often blamed for wildfires in the U.S., but the reason for them is mostly poor forest management like failing to remove flammable undergrowth and allowing houses to be built in fire-prone areas. Despite breathless climate reporting, in 2021 the burned area to date is the fourth-lowest of the past 11 years. The area that burned in 2020 was only 11% of the area that did in the early 1900s. Contrary to climate clichés, annual global burned area has declined since 1900 and continues to fall…

​​Climate change is a real problem we should fix. But we can’t rely on apocalyptic stories when crafting policy. We must see all the data.”

Bjorn Lomborg, president of the Copenhagen Consensus. (Published in WSJ)

​​”While polls show most Americans embrace moving away from fossil fuels, the eco-warriors have been less than forthcoming about the intricacies of what their radical vision of our energy future entails. And it isn’t pretty. Consider a report on combating climate change released last week by a group of European researchers who fully embrace Chicken Little doomsday scenarios.

The study, led by a sustainability researcher at Leeds University, looked at what sort of measures will be necessary to achieve the goals of climate change extremists. The list is extensive and includes the abolition of capitalism, which has brought more people out poverty than any other economic arrangement. But that’s just the beginning.

The researchers advocate limiting per capita energy use, restricting travel, imposing clothing allowances, regulating caloric intake, limiting living spaces and a “fundamental transformation of the political-economic regime”…

The result, of course, would be an authoritarian state characterized by massive poverty and misery. As Ronald Bailey of reason.com noted last week, “there are absolutely no examples of low-energy societies providing decent living standards — as defined by the researchers themselves — for their citizens”…

Those should be words of wisdom for the utopianists in Congress. But don’t count on it.”

Editorial Board, Las Vegas Journal-Review