Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Advocacy and (social) science

Do Nobel laureates who support Obama do a disservice to the noble cause of curbing climate change?
There is an excellent blog post by Daniel Lende from the Neuroanthropology Blog on "Science, Social Science, and Politics". It is an answer to  a piece in Nature, written by Daniel Sarewitz, "Science must be seen to bridge the political divide". It is an exciting discussion about the role of (social) science in the politicized climate debate. Alarmed by the open support of Nobel laureates for President Obama, Sarewitz argues that science has to remain bipartisan and neutral in this debate; otherwise, the Republican side would (as so often before) only claim the politicization of science in order to undermine consensus on climate change. For the same reasons, he also seems willing to sacrifice social sciences.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

In eigener Sache

Am 25. Februar erscheint im Hanser Verlag das Buch von Hans von Storch und Werner Krauß mit dem Titel "Die Klimafalle. Die gefährliche Nähe von Politik und Klimaforschung".

Hier gehts zur  Verlagsankündigung, und es steht auch eine längere Leseprobe zur Verfügung. Hier der Klappentext:

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Re-thinking adaptation after Sandy

There is a brilliant article written by Eric Klinenberg in The New Yorker, Dept of Urban Planning, about „adaptation“; a wonderful example that the climate debate indeed moves forward and is not only deadlocked in the fruitless discussion between alarmists and skeptics or the incestuos climate science / climate politics relationship. Unfortunately, the article is behind a pay wall. I will try to sum up those arguments which really impressed me most; I’ll do so mostly from memory and in form of my own thoughts; I can only hope that you get access to The New Yorker and read this elegant piece of climate expertise on your own!

Monday, January 7, 2013

Is Germany's energy transformation coal powered?

The EU, and Germany, like to portray themselves as leader when it comes to progressive climate policies. Germany in particular has adopted several policies dear to the environmentalist movement, the phasing out of nuclear energy while at the same time increasing renewable energies. Such is the enthusiasm that it seems to escape attention that the necessary back up energy mainly comes from coal, which is the dirtiest form of energy and the most damaging to climate. The Economist has two articles on the subject (here and here) which are worth a read.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Climate utopia

This sounds a bit like a New Year’s resolution and the impression is not altogether wrong. Thinking about the narrative of climate change, and the project to prevent dangerous warming of the planet, it occurred to me many times that it is lacking in vision but excels in warnings, exhortations, and polarization.