Stanford University Professor Jon Krosnick led analysis of more than a decade’s worth of poll results for 46 states. The results show that the majority of residents of all of those states, whether they be red or blue, are united in their worries about the climate — and in their desire for the government to take climate action.
“To me, the most striking finding that is new today was that we could not find a single state in the country where climate scepticism was in the majority,” Krosnick told The Guardian.
In every state surveyed for which sufficient data was available:
•At least three-quarters of residents are aware that the climate is changing.
•At least two-thirds want the government to limit greenhouse gas emissions from businesses.
•At least 62 percent want regulations that cut carbon pollution from power plants.
•At least half want the U.S. to take action to fight climate change, even if other countries do not.
This map shows the percentage of state residents who believe global warming has been happening:
In 2012 the increase in atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide, which accounts for an estimated 80 percent of the overall growth in greenhouse gas emissions showed that increases are more rapid than before. The 2.2 ppm increase in carbon dioxide concentrations was above the 2.02 ppm average increase recorded over the past decade and well above the 1.5 ppm average increase registered in the 1990s.
Rise in Methane Concentrations Puzzling
It was noted that carbon dioxide, most of which is emitted through human activities, is a “very stable gas, there’s no chemical reaction which would naturally destroy the gas, so it stays in the atmosphere for hundreds of years or more.”
“That’s why the actions we take now—or the actions we don’t take—will have consequences for a very, very long period,” Jarred, the WMO chief said.
Another cause for concern was the continued rise in concentrations of methane in the atmosphere after near zero growth between 1999 and 2006. Methane is considered the second most important long-lived greenhouse gas, with an estimated 60 percent of emissions coming from human activities such as cattle breeding, rice growing and fossil fuel exploitation.
The 6 ppb increase in concentrations registered in 2012 was well above the 3.7 ppb average annual increase over the past decade, the WMO noted. Methane has a much shorter life cycle than carbon dioxide, however, remaining in the atmosphere for about 10 years.
“We do not understand what is causing this increase” in methane, Tarasova said. “Our first thought was that this was due to Arctic melting [of the permafrost], and indeed the initial increase in 2007 was due to increased emissions in the Arctic.”
Since then, however, the increase appears to be driven by rising concentrations in the tropical and mid-latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere, where there are both wetlands, which emit methane, and anthropogenic, or human, sources, he said. “Which source is driving it? We cannot say,” Tarasova said.
In highlights of its Fifth Assessment Report issued Sept. 27, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change said that, based on detailed historical estimates, greenhouse gas concentrations have reached their highest levels in at least 800,000 years.
The “Greenhouse Gas Bulletin” is available at http://bit.ly/1cS6YML.
Here is a fascinating study about coal production and jobs in the US. The world figures are probably similar. Conclusion, coal jobs have been going down, down, down in this country since 1920. Why? Automation underground, and surface mining which is non-union, usually, and produces more coal per worker. And more recently, natural gas prices have cut into coal’s share of power generation.
This article points out that there are 83,000 coal mining jobs, underground and surface mining, in 2005 while the number of jobs in wind power has gone up, up and up, surpassing coal mining jobs. To tell the complete story, there are also jobs in transporting coal [trains, trucks] and in running the coal power plants that make electricity. All together, then, full time jobs in coal mining, transport and burning it are around 174,000. That is more than the 85,000 jobs in wind power in 2008.
While natural gas has cut in some to coal’s share of the pie, the US has exported more overseas, meaning that overall, production is flat between 2005 and 2011 at around 1,000 million tons (Mt) while exports have grown from 20 to 84 Mt.