* "climate change" is a euphemism introduced by opponents of government action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, to make the situation sound less threatening than "global warming". See the links below for the tactics of lobby groups who have a vested interest in maintaining unsustainable consumption of fossil fuels.

Alerts

Mikhail Gorbachev - "We cannot go on like this!" - MANIFESTO FOR THE EARTH

David Suzuki - "I believe that future generations will look back on the inactivity, the unwillingness to do anything, as a crime against future generations. It's outrageous that we are not taking advantage of foresight, our predictive capacity to see where the dangers lie, seize the opportunities and make our way into a more liveable future" + I don't ever want my grandchild to look at me and say: "Grandpa, you could have done more." + We're in a giant car heading towards a brick wall and everyone's arguing over where they're going to sit.

Carl Sagan - "The principal energy sources of our present industrial civilization are the so-called fossil fuels. We burn wood and oil, coal and natural gas, and, in the process, release waste gases, principally CO2 into the air. Consequently, the carbon dioxide content of the Earth's atmosphere is increasing dramatically. The possiblity of a runaway greenhouse effect suggests that we have to be careful; Even a one- or two-degree rise in the global temperature can have catastrophic consequences...Do we value short-term advantages above the welfare of the Earth? Or will we think on longer time scales with concern for our children and our grandchildren, to understand and protect the complex life-support systems of our planet? The Earth is a tiny and fragile world. It needs to be cherished" (written in 1980!). 24 Dec 06 Planetary Society: Where Would We Be With Carl? by Ann Druyan

John Lennon - "Living is easy with eyes closed, Misunderstanding all you see..." (Strawberry Fields Forever)

Jane Goodall - One of the most eminent conservationists in the world has condemned Australia for its lack of response to climate change and said the country ''needs a wake-up call''. Dame Jane Goodall, regarded as the first lady of conservation and a UN Messenger of Peace who has made a lifetime study of chimpanzees, accused politicians of having more concern for their immediate political careers than for future generations.

12 Jan 04 SMH: Greenhouse gas scheme gets the axe - The Australian Greenhouse Office is no more! See its last major publication Climate change - An Australian Guide to the Science and Potential Impacts.
Update: 26 Jul 05 - AGO still seems to be in operation.

29 Oct 06
GEOTHERMAL Safe BASELOAD (i.e. continuous) "nuclear" power with no waste! Tapping into vast reserves of heat from natural radioactive decay in granite  4km underground -
Opinion: I am getting a little tired of renewable energy sceptics saying no renewal energy sources provide "baseload" power. Geothermal sources provide continuous power that could prove more reliable than fossil-fuel or nuclear options. The irony is that escalating oil prices are making the cost of drilling geothermal pilot plants more expensive. In any case, domestic/village solar systems have been developed in Norway that store the heat underground until it is needed. Update 5 Aug 10. 4 Dec 10 ABC: Busting the baseload power myth

Some regions get colder?

Puzzled by reports of the US and other countries having the coldest winter for decades? See this article from EurekaAlert: The eastern U.S. keeps its cool while the world warms (updated URL) (also here) - warming oceans produce more cloud over the US (+ Higher ocean temperatures linked to cooling in Midwest) . Livescience.com: How Global Warming Can Chill the Planet. Some of the think tank organisations are misleadingly using this effect to question global warming.

Try this at home - experiment with a hot bath

Two or three degrees of warming does not sound like much - every day the temperature fluctuates much more than this. But it is the devastastion caused by unrelenting record peak temperatures that is a major concern. To get a good idea of the effects of small peak temperature increases try this with a bath at home:

The japanese enjoy a hot bath - known as onsen where natural hot spring water is used. Onsen have temperatures controlled to within a degree or so and there is good reason for such tight temperature control.

Fill the bath with hot water so that it is 38C (maybe use a medical thermometer). Try immersing yourself in the bath (but not your head). Most people find this hot but tolerable.  Now increase the temperature to 40C. Immerse yourself again. Many people will find this uncomfortably hot. Try it again at 42C and your body will probably find it much too hot.

OK, water heats your body up much more quickly than air, but this demonstrates how sensitive life is to temperatures slighly higher than "normal". No wonder thousands of birds dropped dead from trees in Western Australia during the hot weather event that devasted Ningaloo coral reef recently.

18 Oct 08 Opinion: Would these same organisation claim that the current stock market turmoil is cyclic and that there is no reason for government intervention?