PORT FOURCHON, LA—In what may be the greatest environmental disaster in the nation’s history, the supertanker TI Oceania docked without incident at the Louisiana Offshore Oil Port Monday and successfully unloaded 3.1 million barrels of dangerous crude oil into the United States.
and later in the article:
Experts are saying the oil tanker safely reaching port could lead to dire ecological consequences on multiple levels, including rising temperatures, disappearing shorelines, the eradication of countless species, extreme weather events, complete economic collapse, droughts that surpass the Dust Bowl, disease, wildfires, widespread human starvation, and endless, bloody wars fought over increasingly scarce resources.
It is scary to think that a satirical article could be so incredibly accurate. As people such as Jon Stewart remind us almost every night, sometimes humor can be the best illuminator of the the truth.
News sources other than The Onion are waking up however. On Sunday, The New York Times ran perhaps the best story on global warming to appear in a major news publication in years. It even appeared on the front page. Whereas most stories that come out of the mainstream media act as if there is serious debate over whether climate change is occurring, the Times’ story was more honest.
A survey conducted by Stanford University researchers found that there is no serious debate about whether human actions are raising world temperatures:
Here, we use an extensive dataset of 1,372 climate researchers and their publication and citation data to show that (i) 97–98% of the climate researchers most actively publishing in the field support the tenets of ACC [Climate Change theory] outlined by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, and (ii) the relative climate expertise and scientific prominence of the researchers unconvinced of ACC are substantially below that of the convinced researchers.
And, a new poll conducted by Jon Krosnick (also of Stanford University) finds that most people (over 70%) do actually believe in “global warming.” Krosnick, who has obtained similar results in other polls he has conducted, postulates that mainstream polling companies ask confusing questions. His poll phrased the questions more clearly. This explains, he says, the substantially different results.
If people believe in climate change then what is keeping Congress from acting? A better question might be: who is keeping Congress from acting? The answer: lobbyists and corporations. While our elected leaders stall, people continue to suffer intense heat (seemingly everywhere), drown in major floods (Pakistan) and starve because of record droughts (Russia).
Humanity has a very simple decision to make: Do we do what seems easy and ignore the siren calls of scientists everywhere or do we step it up and face the great challenge of our time? As the recent environmental disasters have demonstrated, we may not have a choice; nature will force us to face its wrath head-on. It will be hard either way, but it will be far easier if we tackle climate change on our own terms.