In the Media this Week: Global Warming

This week National Geographic informed us about experimental field trials done at Duke University. The research indicates that Poison Ivy becomes nastier with increased atmospheric carbon dioxide. Better not go in the woods today or you're in for a big surprise; and, don't set the Lacrosse stick down in the weeds. That's the bad news. The good news is that Big Al was nominated as best crossover artist, making him the first politician recognized for his potential to become a movie star. Academy insiders say it was "the incredible Reverse-Reagan" move that got their attention. We think it was more about the passion thing. Next up: -- A Climate Realist was nominated to be the next US Treasury Secretary , prompting Rob Portman, White House budget director, to help us better understand nominee Henry Paulson's environmentalist creds. ".., I would call him more of a conservationist," Mr. Portman said. "The distinction might be that he focuses on preserving and protecting sensitive environments, sensitive land, and some of that land has endangered species in it." See the full article where the quote came from here, in the New York Times .

Klaus Toepfer, former head of the UN Environment agency, said about the need to mitigate climate change : "The poorest of the poor are suffering most. Our world will be destabilized if we are not able to solve this problem. It is not something on the margins. Our children and their children will suffer the most and it's our obligation to do it now." Seems like he's the first major governance figure to realize that by referring to children directly, instead of as "future generations", people will listen, even while driving SUVs to fertility clinics and soccer games.

Greenwire reports that oil and gas rigs in the Gulf of Mexico " have been significantly fortified following last year's devastating storms in the Gulf of Mexico, but a substantial amount of work will not be complete as the official hurricane season begins this week "

Small town newspapers have taken to regularly covering the climate beat, offering op. ed. space to people not on the usual "think tank" climate-denial expert roster. A good example might be this one from Bill McKibben

We were surprised when a famous NYT columnist referred to RealClimate,org as 'the go-to place' for objective information. Might have been because the scientists who post there just added a piece on economics called "Buying a Stairway To Heaven". Anyway, good evidence that the newspaper types are reading their "internets". Hey...over here!

And finally, from">U.S. News & World Report, a feature story: "Global Warming: Can We Live With It?" The story's focus is on "what is shaping up to be the next battle in the climate-change wars: preparing for and adapting to a warmer climate." The debate no longer is whether global warming exists, "why the planet is warming, or if we can stop it. The debate is: How do we live with it?"

What a week it was. And it's not even over yet!