Durban Climate Talks Follow Predictable Path

Published December 9, 2011

Climate Change Weekly #30

United Nations global climate talks in Durban, South Africa took a predictable path this week with the European Union and many Third World nations pushing for legally enforceable restrictions on carbon dioxide emissions while Russia, Canada, Japan, China, India, and the United States opposed such restrictions.

Russia, Canada, and Japan have indicated they are not happy with the nature of the soon-to-expire Kyoto Protocol and will not join a similar such treaty in the near future. The European Union would like to craft a new treaty similar to the Kyoto Protocol but will support it only if nations such as China and India, which were exempt from emissions reductions under Kyoto, will agree to make significant emissions reductions under the new treaty. China, which in the past has categorically refused to consider any such restrictions, indicated in Durban that it would consider such an agreement if the western democracies agreed to give at least $100 billion per year to China and other developing nations and made substantial new cuts in their own emissions before asking China to cut any of its emissions.

Carbon dioxide emissions in the United States and the western democracies are at or below year 2000 levels while global emissions have risen 33 percent since 2000. China is responsible for 75 percent of the rise in global carbon dioxide emissions since 2000.

SOURCE: Business Week


Durban demands would transform U.S. economy … United Nations contemplates climate court … Global warming activists masquerading as national delegates … Lack of hurricane strikes defies overwhelming odds … Oceans not warming as much as models predicted … Michael Mann plays the victim in WSJ letter … Warming response targets capitalism … ClimateWiki update


Third World nations at the United Nations climate talks in Durban are seeking to create a Global Climate Fund that would have the power to tax the United States and other western democracies for their carbon dioxide emissions, financial transactions, electricity usage, air travel, and shipping. One year after U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton indicated the United States might be willing to pay the lion’s share of $100 billion in annual payments to developing nations to help them deal with the perceived challenges of climate change, developing nations are seeking to turn this offer into an enforceable commitment and tax.



United Nations officials have drafted a 138-page document that would create an International Climate Court to adjudicate claims that western democracies are harming developing nations via carbon dioxide emissions and compel western democracies to pay for carbon dioxide mitigation and adaptation. The proposed document would also create “Rights of Mother Earth” and outlaw national defense forces.

SOURCE: Climate Depot


The World Wildlife Fund, Oxfam, Rainforest Alliance, Nature Conservancy, and are some of the global warming activist groups that have members appointed as official national delegates at the United Nations climate talks in Durban. The World Wildlife Fund leads the pack with 14 members appointed as official delegates representing various nations.

SOURCE: Watts Up With That?


No major hurricanes (Category 3 or above) have struck the mainland United States since 2005. Prior to 2005, one or more major hurricane struck the U.S. mainland in 69 of the previous 106 years. Within that context, there should have been less than a 1 percent chance of the mainland United States not experiencing a major hurricane strike from 2005 through 2011. Keep this in mind when a major hurricane finally does hit the United States again and activists blame it on global warming.

SOURCES: Roger Pielke Jr.’s blog and Watts Up With That?


The world’s oceans are warming at a pace that is less than one-third the pace predicted by alarmist climate models. Very little upper-ocean warming has occurred during the past several years, defying Goddard Institute models created by NASA scientist-global warming activist James Hansen.

SOURCE: Climate Science: Roger Pielke Sr.


Penn State University researcher and Climategate figure Michael Mann claimed this week in a letter to the Wall Street Journal that he is the sympathetic victim in the Climategate scandal and criticisms of his conduct as revealed in the Climategate emails are an attack on climate science. To the contrary, Mann’s conduct is itself an attack on science, and Mann’s attempt to play the victim after being caught red-handed calls to mind Hollywood science fiction movies.



Global warming activist Naomi Klein explains to environmental reporter Andrew Revkin that restricting carbon dioxide emissions necessarily requires destroying economic freedom and global capitalism. “[T]he reality that humans are causing the climate to warm, with potentially catastrophic results, really does demand radical government intervention in the market, as well as collective action on an unprecedented scale,” said Klein. Moreover, “climate change really does demand a profound interrogation of the ideology that currently governs our economy. And that’s not bad news, since our current economic model is failing millions of people on multiple fronts,” she said.

SOURCE: Dot Earth


The Heartland Institute has created a Web site,, to help everyone – from high school students to scientists working in the field – quickly find the latest and most reliable information on climate science. Please send your questions, suggestions for new pages, or improvements to current ones to [email protected]. And if you have new research to share, is the perfect place.

An example from ClimateWiki, Plant Productivity Responses, reads in part:

Although climate model projections are generally thought to be unreliable, there are potential positive outcomes that are being posited from projected climate changes – as is the case with grapes. In a 2011 study, a team of six scientists from Portugal responded to the IPCC prediction that “more frequent extreme weather will increase summer air temperature and water stress, namely for regions with a Mediterranean-type environment. Expected changes in the climate of viticultural regions may alter significantly both the spectrum and the distribution of grape varieties currently used.” Red wine produced in Demarcated Region of Douro (DRD) is one of the most important products for the Portuguese economy.

The team grew grapes in open-top chambers in 2004, 2005, and 2006 with ambient (365 ppm) and elevated (500 ppm) atmospheric CO2 concentrations, and found that the elevated CO2 concentration increased net photosynthetic rate, intrinsic water use efficiency, and leaf thickness. In 2004, 2005, and 2006 the elevated CO2 increased the yield by 50 percent, 27 percent, and 50 percent, respectively.

If you have questions about the ClimateWiki or about The Heartland Institute, contact Jim Lakely, director of communications, at [email protected] or call 312/377-4000.

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