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Helping Others Eschew Oil How to Make Your Life Less Oily in 2017

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Part I:  Taking Stock

Part II: Squeezing Oil Out of Your Travel

Part III: Wringing Oil from Your Beverages, Food, Stuff, and Heat

Part IV: Helping Others Eschew Oil

“You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.” – Buckminster Fuller

So you’re working on reducing your own oil use but maybe you’re downhearted. Maybe you figure, why bother? I’m just an oily drop in an oily nation. What does it matter if I cut my own oil use if everyone around me wallows in the stuff?

First off I would argue that each of us has to do what’s right because it’s right. If I don’t want to support fracking, polluting, stonings, and beheadings, I have to stop abetting ExxonMobil and Saudi Arabia through my oil use.

But never fear, there are many ways to also influence others to reduce their oil use. You won’t impact everyone, but you can do your part to nudge/cajole/enjoin American society towards a less oily future.

Swat those pesky facts

I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but Americans are curiously fact-resistant, especially when it comes to anything concerning the environment, the climate or the economy. We might lament the current state of human intellect, but it’s always been the case that most people don’t find data and factoids nearly as persuasive as emotion. Trial lawyers know this, preachers know this, con men know it, and though it frustrates the engineer in me to no end, the novelist in me is not surprised. It’s part of the business of being human. Now, I know you are persuaded by facts. You love a good fact for breakfast and dine on three more at lunch. After all, here you are reading a post about energy, sustainability and climate, proof that facts have already reached you. I have no doubt you were one of the three kids paying attention in your eighth grade science class, too. But we have the other twenty-seven to consider.

Emotions! Bah, you say! You want to read how to help others eschew oil, not some namby-pamby squishiness about feelings. Wait! Don’t click away! If we can’t reach someone through facts, emotions may very well be the ticket, but in a different way than you might think. In order to convert to an oil-light life, most people will need to believe that such a life will bring them status and pleasure. You might think that health and happiness would be enough, but remarkably neither are as psychologically powerful. Below we’ll look at sixteen ways to help others eschew oil, some aiming at status and pleasure, others political or practical. Let’s begin.

(Credit: Josef Beery)

1.) Walk the talk. You cannot expect others to do what you won’t do yourself. Model oil use reduction. In Gandhian fashion, exemplify the change you wish to see in the world. And let it transform you. Yes, initially people may see your new habits as crazy, pointless, etc., but as your life gets better and better—you gain health, you save money, your personal life satisfaction grows, you become pleasantly grounded in your neighborhood and community, slowly your friends and family will take notice. So walk, bike or take transit to places others think impossible. (This isn’t hard: most Americans think walking half a mile impossible.) Arrive invigorated with your trusty stainless steel water bottle, full of amusing stories of your adventures along the way. Sate your hungry ghost. Clear out your excess stuff. Replace the plastic in your house with fewer but more beautiful things. Celebrate local goods and foods. Give them as gifts, and when you have guests to dinner or when you bring food to other homes, point out the tasty, high quality local food the meal contains. (Bonus points for food you grow in your yard.) Through your vitality and obvious satisfaction, you’ll show rather than tell how a life with less oil can be better than one saturated in it.

2.) Become a roving ambassador for walking. Thirty years ago I read that the best way to improve your neighborhood is to walk around the block. I think this still holds as good advice. Walking not only puts eyes on the street and creates social cohesion through interactions between neighbors, it’s the best way to encourage others to walk. So walk. Don’t be afraid to be noticed. Being seen is the point. Realize that everyone likes to be approved of and admired, even by complete strangers, so approve and admire away. Smile and say hello to the people you pass. Chortle about what a fine day it is. Make eye contact and nod at other pedestrians like you’re both members of the Grand Secret Walking Club. Offer praise, simple encouragement (you don’t have to go overboard) or just beaming glances of approval. Do yourself a favor and get a pair of attractive yet highly comfortable walking shoes. And dress well! Athletic gear is okay for a morning power walk, but we’ll never raise the cachet of walking if it only looks appropriate for people in t-shirts and sweatpants. You could wear a hat and carry a natty walking stick, but that’s not required. If you’re up for it, you could do a David Sedaris and pick up litter. (You might even get a garbage truck named after you.) Use a wire handcart to walk groceries or other goods home to show it can be done. Lead community walks if that happens where you live. Tell store owners you walked to get there. (They’ll assume you drove.) Your job is to raise the status of walking, to encourage those who don’t walk to try it, and to help those who do walk to find it so enjoyable they’ll do more of it.

Day view

3.) Pamper your local pedestrians. Adopt a stretch of sidewalk and make it a place pedestrians feel happier walking through. As I described in Building Community One Bench at a Time, we put a decorated bench in front of our house. We also strung up solar-powered light strings to make our stretch of sidewalk friendlier at night. Since then I’ve also started sweeping 75 feet of sidewalk belonging to three sets of neighbors. Why, you ask? My neighbors live up a whole bunch of stairs and can’t keep their compost bins at street level. I have a garage at street level and so can more easily discard sweepings. For years I was annoyed that they didn’t keep their sidewalk clear and pedestrians had to trudge through leaves, branches and litter to get by. Now I just sweep it. It takes about twenty extra minutes a week and the sidewalk looks much, much better. I challenge you to choose a stretch of sidewalk beyond your own to sweep or keep snow-free. You’ll be helping out not only a neighbor but also our planet. If you have the space, plant flowers or lovely shade trees along your sidewalk, put in garden gnomes, stone lions, whatever might interest or amuse pedestrians as they pass. Walking naturally feels good, but you can make it that much better.

Night view

4.) Become a roving ambassador for bicycling. First off, if you’re a serious bicyclist with an awesome road bike you’ve spent major bucks on that is fantastic for hundred mile rides, good for you. But you also need a town bike, one suitable for leisurely, conspicuous, happy bicycling. For this assignment, being duded up in Lycra hunched over your handlebars while barreling along at 30 mph just won’t do. I recommend an upright bike because it shows your face, which, of course, will be beaming due to just how much fun it is to casually bike around town. People like to look at faces, so you’ll attract more attention, which is the point. Make your bike festive! I have a wicker basket decorated with silk flowers. I get lots of compliments; however, I didn’t put on the basket for compliments but rather to make bicycling look as appealing as possible. Guys might not be wild about flowers, but a tweed-style approach to bike riding is always eye-catching. Women, don’t be afraid to wear fashionable clothes while cycling. Looking stylish while pedaling very much raises the status of biking, and it’s easier to ride a bike in heels than to walk in them. (My husband and I ride our bikes to the ballet and the symphony.) Cargo bikes and box bikes can be great fun to decorate (involve the family!), and every single bicycle can benefit from festive lights at night. (I love the Monkey Lights on both my bikes but there are many sparkly, twinkly options.) Festive lights are not only safer, they attract attention in a positive way. On a bike it’s easy to strike up conversations with other bicyclists and pedestrians at intersections. Be cordial, be genial. Give out compliments; help the people biking around you feel great about what they’re doing. If you have a kid-toting cargo bike, be sure to regularly park it in a conspicuous place in front of your kids’ school and chat up anyone who asks about it.

My about-town bike

5.) Change the story. As we discussed in Part III, the average American gets a phenomenal amount of brainwashing (aka advertising) persuading them that cars make them powerful, sexy, and free when actually most of their time in a car is spent in traffic stressed, alone, and unhappy. The story most Americans have running in their heads about bicyclists and pedestrians is that they must be poor and stupid (so pity them) because anyone with money and sense has a car. It’s the American way. So your job is to convey with every stride and pedal stroke that not only do walking and bicycling save you money, not only do walking and bicycling improve your health, walking and bicycling are highly pleasurable. It’s the people in cars–getting more stressed, obese and diabetic by the hour–who should be pitied. Now I know there are days when you think, “Walking and bicycling would be bliss if it weren’t for all these crapola drivers trying to run me over.” However true this may be, if you’re going to change the walking/biking story, harassed fearfulness is not the sentiment to convey. You want your body language to exude the joy of walking, the fun of bicycling. You want to express that this is one the best parts of your day. Beam, smile, emote. That’s your focus, that’s your mission.


Now don’t expect instant change–we’re trying to alter the collective unconscious here. Most likely your joie de vivre will intrigue some people and give those waffling on the edge permission to give walking or biking a try. If you want to be a roving ambassador for transit, go for it, but depending on how well your local transit system works, it may be harder to convey great happiness about it. (Train buffs, on the other hand, have no problem waxing euphoric about riding the rails.) At least don’t trash talk your local transit. Instead, offer encouragement/admiration/ positive reinforcement to those friends and family members who take transit. Always be respectful, kind and polite to your fellow passengers on transit and act as if you approve of and admire them. The psychological field you radiate can actually make others around you feel calmer and more content.

Live, die and even be buried in your car.

6.) Combat American car culture. Car culture in the US has long been bonkers. Maybe our love affair with the auto has dimmed a little since the fifties when we ate cheeseburgers and saw movies in our cars, but we still congratulate people when they get a new car almost as much as when they have a baby. And getting a driver’s license is still a rite of passage almost as important as graduating high school. This is nuts! To counter this, never admire a car and do not congratulate anyone on buying a new car ever. You don’t have to say, “Gee, the value must have dropped $4000 when you rolled it off the lot.” Just don’t say anything. Instead, compliment people on their spiffy bikes, their awesome water bottles, or how nice their sidewalk always looks. When teens you know get to driving age, chat with their parents about how much safer it is for kids these days to take Uber/Lyft (or transit or protected bike lanes if you have them), how it really cuts down on teen traffic fatalities, the number one cause of teen deaths. Enough said.

7.) Gifts. If you give gifts at holidays and birthdays make them count! Every dollar you spend has influence. Certainly give non-oily/non-plastic presents, but if you can also help your loved ones eschew oil, why not? At this point my family knows my eccentricities (and hopefully forgives them), but I have been known to give LED bulbs, low-flow showerheads, and stainless steel water bottles as Christmas presents. I am absolutely not kidding. (With kids I’m less dogmatic and usually give non-plastic things on their wishlists.) Next year, I swear, I’m going big with wool dryer balls. If you can’t think of anything your friends and family would appreciate, try consumables (preferably local food) that at least don’t add to their pile of stuff. You could also give gift memberships to a local CSA, bikeshare, or carshare. Strategically support with your gifts any interests or inclinations your friends and family have already shown in reducing their oil use.

8.) Holiday Gatherings. Get there by non-automotive means if possible. Bring local food in your non-plastic dish to share. After the meal go on a walk (so good for the digestion) and invite/prod/cajole others into coming with you. Make it fun, a great opportunity for pleasure and adventure. (See flowers! Birds! The sunset! Stars!)

Helpful hint: it’s quite possible to walk and bike at a leisurely pace without sweating. But if you’re prone to sweat, bring a shirt to change into or invest in some merino wool t-shirts and wear them as a base layer. They’re marvelous at absorbing both sweat and stink. Truly, you’ve got to try it to believe it.

Guerilla plumbers strike again!

9.) Make walking/biking safer. Support daylighting, the removal of one parking space just before crosswalks. It makes pedestrians much more visible to car drivers, and makes it easier for pedestrians to see if a car is really going to stop for them. In addition, speed kills. Support lowering speed limits on residential streets to 20 mph (“Twenty is plenty”) and adding speed humps to enforce this speed. The main reason people give for not riding bicycles is safety. The underlying emotional reasons are the fear and stress that come from biking next to cars. Support protected bike lanes that create a peaceful, stress-free biking experience even if it requires giving up parking or a lane of traffic. If you really feel gung ho, you could do some guerilla bike lane creation, using plungers to mark off protected territory like a group did in Wichita.

Don’t be evil

10.) If you must drive, drive peaceably. I live in San Francisco where half the people drive responsibly, another third are texting, and the rest are freaking maniacs. This shows up in the high number of pedestrian/bicyclist fatalitieswe have caused by inattentive, speeding drivers. Where you live, drivers may be calmer. (I hope so!) Still, most people justify speeding and rolling through stops because “everybody does it.” So don’t be that everybody. All cars have blind spots, and pedestrians and bicyclists make mistakes. At every single stop sign and every time you turn before you proceed make absolutely sure you’re not about to run somebody over. When you get to intersections busy with pedestrians, slow down rather than blast through. Follow the speed limit however much it pisses off the car behind you. Never double-park in a bike lane. (So evil!) And never, ever honk at a bicyclist just to tell them “you’re there.”

11.) Advocate for electric buses, electric shuttles, and electric trains. Now that electric bus technology has advanced to the point where range is not a problem, write to corporations like Google, EBay, Genetech and Apple that use corporate internal combustion buses and ask them to use electric ones instead. These companies are rich and can easily afford it. If you ride to work on a corporate bus, you should especially make your voice heard. If company buses routinely pass down your street (like they do mine) politely request of those companies to switch to electric models made by American companies such as Proterra so as to reduce the noise, vibrations and particulate matter that internal combustion buses inflict on your neighborhood. If your employer uses any kind of shuttle, these too could easily be replaced with electric ones. Though the initial cost of an electric bus or shuttle is higher than an internal combustion equivalent, because of reduced maintenance and fuel costs, they are actually cheaper to operate over the life of the vehicle. Many cities are now using electric transit buses, reducing the toxic levels of pollution they are dousing their citizens with. Yours could too. And vigorously support electrified trains everywhere. In a few years we’ll all be extremely grateful for every single mile of electrified rail we have in this country. (Oil glut or not, peak oil and falling oil EROEI are still with us, folks.)

12.) Ask for drinking fountains and water bottle refill stations in public areas. Drinking fountains used to be a common public amenity, and they can save each taxpayer hundreds of dollars a year in oily bottled water costs. Public access to drinking water is not an unreasonable request.

13.) Support biking/walking/street safety programs, weekend street closures, as well as congestion charges/HOV lanes, etc.  This is the traditional approach to helping others eschew oil, and all of it is certainly worth doing. Participate in or otherwise support bike to work days, walk to work days, walk/bike to school days, safe routes to school, Vision Zero, Summer Streets, Sunday Streets, etc. Get upset whenever a bicyclist or pedestrian dies in a traffic crash. These are not accidents. They are almost always the result of poor driver behavior or poor street design. Street design that properly protects pedestrians and bicyclists saves lives and encourages non-automotive transportation. The Netherlands has the most bicycling per capita in the world, no one wears helmets, and yet they have almost no bicyclist fatalities and very few injuries. What they do have are careful drivers and excellent bicycle infrastructure.

14.) Be a YIMBY. Say Yes in My Backyard. Support accessory dwelling units, such as granny flats, in your neighborhood. Support infill development of multistory residential over office space or ground floor retail, especially if it will replace car infrastructure such as parking lots, parking garages, automotive repair shops, gas stations and car dealerships. Support adding density especially when it allows new residents to live in ten-minute neighborhoods (see Part II).

Ditch the SUV

15.) Be an early adopter. If/when bikeshare, carshare or scootershare programs start up in your town, sign up even if you’re unlikely to use them extensively. They usually don’t cost much and could use extra support the first year to get them off the ground. If new light rail starts up near you, make a point of at least trying it out. And if you can afford it, get one of an explosion of new models of electrified cargo bikes available these days. They’re a blast to ride and really can replace your car for the lion’s share of errands. The more of these on your streets, the more likely others are to get one too.

16.) Advocate for sidewalks. Sidewalks are the most basic way to make our lives less oily. Unless you live extremely rural, your neighborhood should have them. If it doesn’t, petition or advocate for them. Your town/community might feel they’re expensive, but if paid for over ten to thirty years (completely valid for capital improvements) they’re not all that much. The cost of not having them is far higher.

Okay, at this point you may be saying this woman is batshit crazy. We’re never going to get the world off oil in these tiny, incremental ways. We need big action, on a federal level, and that is completely not going to happen anytime in the next four years. All is doomed, the arctic permafrost is going to melt releasing a methane climate bomb, and human extinction (as well as extinction of a large portion of the animal world) is next up on the agenda.

Massive carbon absorber

I’m sorry but this line of thought is both untrue and will freeze you into passivity like a deer in existential headlights. We human beings haven’t even tried to truly deal with climate change yet, not in any kind of concerted way. There’s still time; there’s still hope. There’s still time to cut our energy use in half, largely through electrification and efficiency. There’s still time to prudently use natural gas as a bridge fuel while we build out renewables. Massive amounts of carbon can be still sequestered through biochar, reforestation, wetland restoration, regenerated grasslands, and regenerative agriculture. World population can slowly ebb by educating girls and giving women access to contraception. Yes, all this must be done on a scale we humans are nowhere near to approaching, but what’s necessary is not beyond our reach, have we but the will. The issue at hand is entirely human culture, which in turn is entirely a creation of our collective minds.

Not the best choice.

But (you might say) we don’t have a functioning collective mind! Our politics are insane and brainless! We are Thelma and Louise, driving off the cliff!

Seriously, if the human race drives off a cliff without making any real effort to deal with the problems that we ourselves have created, then we deserve extinction. Take comfort in that.

Physics lesson

I am not so hopeless. Let me leave you with an image. At the Exploratorium in San Francisco, a museum about art, science and human perception, before it moved to the Embarcadero (let me complain about the loss of the old museum and how, like all good San Franciscans, I hate change in my venerable institutions like cats hate rain) there was an exhibit called the Resonant Pendulum. It featured a massive hunk of concrete and metal weighing in at 350 lbs as it hung from the rafters of the Palace of Fine Arts. Imagine its bulk in front of you. You are given the challenge to get the pendulum moving, but you can’t touch it. Your only tools are a bunch of pathetic little wires with puny magnets at the end of them. You throw the magnet at the metal on the pendulum and it sticks, but when you pull with any force, it pops right off. Schoolchildren flitting by are indignant. Moving this colossal pendulum with such teensy implements is impossible. A complete waste of time.

But. But. If you throw your puny little wire with its puny little magnet at the pendulum and five or ten others do also, and if you pull just a little bit, not enough for the magnet to detach, and if those on the other side pull just a little bit on their puny magnet when the pendulum shifts almost imperceptibly in their direction, then slowly, slowly, the massive weight begins to move. Slowly, slowly, if tenacious children and inquisitive adults pull in time to reinforce the pendulum’s natural frequency, the humongous object begins to swing. Slowly, slowly it really begins to swing. And all of the sudden it’s making a huge arc across the floor.

Though there are all sorts of physics lessons here, there are many more about what is possible, how it is possible, and when it is possible. Timing, weight, cooperation. Magnificent.

Perhaps the moment will come when it’s appropriate to despair, but that time is not yet. The enormous pendulum of human culture can still be moved if we are but wise enough to coax it.

Be the puny magnet. Change the emotion, change the story, change our culture. It’s a worthy endeavor.


36 Comments on "Helping Others Eschew Oil How to Make Your Life Less Oily in 2017"

  1. Plantagenet on Mon, 20th Mar 2017 2:33 pm 

    Great article. I’m just back from a trip to Egypt, and the best parts of the trip were walks through the temples at Luxor, Karnak, Abu Simbel etc. and a hike in the desert at the Bent Pyramid.

    Walking is good. Get out of your car and walk.


  2. GregT on Mon, 20th Mar 2017 3:06 pm 

    “Walking is good. Get out of your car and walk.”

    No need to fly half way around the world to do so, and your little walk added more CO2 into the environment than the average human contributes in an entire year of driving.


  3. rockman on Mon, 20th Mar 2017 4:54 pm 

    Greg – Shame on you! I’m sure P reduced personal oil consumption from all other areas of life to compensate for that share of jet fuel.

  4. dave thompson on Mon, 20th Mar 2017 5:43 pm 

    All of this is good advice even if it only improves your own health.

  5. Driving Directions on Mon, 20th Mar 2017 8:38 pm 

    Thanks for sharing! It’s very useful!

  6. Apneaman on Mon, 20th Mar 2017 8:46 pm 

    “Those who struggle to change the world see themselves as noble, even tragic figures. Yet most of those who work for world betterment are not rebels against the scheme of things. They seek consolation for a truth they are too weak to bear. At bottom, their faith that the world can be transformed by human will is a denial of their own mortality.”
    ― John N. Gray, Straw Dogs: Thoughts on Humans and Other Animals

  7. Midnight Oil on Mon, 20th Mar 2017 10:57 pm 

    I’m getting better at pounding the rocks together bit, but chewing the meal worms, ..
    Without coffee it’s a no go…
    Come on guys…without oil…how are you gonna ride a friggin bike?
    Best to go shoeless now and build up the callouses.

  8. forbin on Tue, 21st Mar 2017 4:55 am 

    still misses the bigly point


    ( and their pets , go take a look , fascinating how many pets people have , and the cost , not just money ! )


  9. Sissyfuss on Tue, 21st Mar 2017 8:44 am 

    Forbs, Soylent Green is pets also. Makes for a good backup plan. Yummy, Spot sure hits the spot.

  10. Sissyfuss on Tue, 21st Mar 2017 8:45 am 

    I’m going to try to eschew chewing cashews.

  11. JuanP on Tue, 21st Mar 2017 11:12 am 

    “The issue at hand is entirely human culture, which in turn is entirely a creation of our collective minds.” The real problem is human nature which we can’t control or change. It is too late; it has always been too late. Our end was predetermined from the moment our species began its existence. I know this is very hard for optimists to accept, but it is the truth.

  12. Davy on Tue, 21st Mar 2017 11:33 am 

    Juan, this is true for all species. There is nothing exceptional about humans and extinction. It will be our common fate sooner or later.

  13. Apneaman on Tue, 21st Mar 2017 12:16 pm 

    Record-breaking climate change pushes world into ‘uncharted territory’

    Earth is a planet in upheaval, say scientists, as the World Meteorological Organisation publishes analysis of recent heat highs and ice lows

  14. Apneaman on Tue, 21st Mar 2017 12:18 pm 

    Study concludes climate change has doubled acres burned in western U.S.

    “A new study released yesterday concludes that human-caused climate change is responsible for nearly doubling the number of acres burned in western United States wildfires during the last 30 years.

    Fires in western forests began increasing abruptly in the 1980s, as measured by area burned, the number of large fires, and length of the fire season. The increases have continued, and recently scientists and public officials have in part blamed human-influenced climate change. The new study is perhaps the first to quantify that assertion. “A lot of people are throwing around the words climate change and fire–specifically, last year fire chiefs and the governor of California started calling this the ‘new normal,’ ” said lead author John Abatzoglou, a professor of geography at the University of Idaho. “We wanted to put some numbers on it.”

    Warm air can hold more moisture. As the temperature rises the relative humidity decreases. Low humidity withdraws more moisture out of live and dead plants as well as soil. Plants are the fuel for wildfires and lower moisture means fires can burn more rapidly and with increased intensity and resistance to control. Average temperatures in forested parts of the U.S. West have gone up about 2.5 degrees F since 1970, and are expected to keep rising. The resulting drying effect is evident in the rise of more fires.”

  15. Apneaman on Tue, 21st Mar 2017 12:21 pm 

    OK class, everyone repeat after me “positive self reinforcing feedback loops”

    Global emissions stayed the same but atmospheric CO2 increased last year

  16. Apneaman on Tue, 21st Mar 2017 4:50 pm 

    Yellow-crested cockatoo on brink of extinction in West Nusa Tenggara

    On verge of extinction, house sparrows mostly prefer earthen nests: Research

    Caracal vanishes from MP, triggers extinction fear

  17. Apneaman on Tue, 21st Mar 2017 4:53 pm 

    Mass Extinction Timeline: Prehistoric Climate Change Caused Three Extinction Events In A Row

    “The study says the huge extinction event in the late Permian Period of our planet’s geologic history, more than 250 million years ago, can be linked to volcanic activity that caused climate and environmental changes, because it released massive amount of greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide and sulfur into the atmosphere, the University of Texas at Austin said in a statement. The Great Dying took out about 95 percent of marine life and 70 percent of life on land.”

  18. makati1 on Tue, 21st Mar 2017 5:21 pm 

    Ap, maybe the oceans have slowed or stopped their absorption of co2? When they stop absorbing the heat, we are cooked, literally. but that may take a long time. At what point does the frog in the pot die?

  19. Davy on Tue, 21st Mar 2017 5:46 pm 

    “India Already Facing Water Shortages Ahead of Dry Season”

    “the warming of our world through fossil fuel burning and related greenhouse gas emissions is causing the glaciers of the Himalayas to melt. It is causing temperatures during spring to increase — which more rapidly dries the rivers and wells of India’s plains. It is creating a hot, dry atmospheric barrier that increasingly delays the onset of India’s monsoon.”

    “April, May and June is the hottest, driest period for India. And the state is entering this season with almost a 150 million people already facing water stress. Moreover, the warming of Equatorial waters in the Pacific as another El Nino is again expected to emerge increases the risk that the 2017 monsoon could be delayed or weakened. So with a water crisis now ongoing in the south, conditions are likely set to worsen soon.”

  20. onlooker on Tue, 21st Mar 2017 6:10 pm
    Peru Suffers Worst Flooding in Decades

  21. onlooker on Tue, 21st Mar 2017 6:16 pm
    Where do you start when climate data comes out that scientists simply call “jaw dropping”, “alarming”, an “ominous milestone”, “true shocker” and “quite stunning … it’s completely unprecedented”?

    The jaw dropper is the global average temperature for February 2016, released on 11 March by the US government agency NASA

  22. GregT on Tue, 21st Mar 2017 6:24 pm 

    From your last link onlooker:

    ‘The headline figure was a 1.35°C warming anomaly (increase from the norm) for February, but that is just in the last fifty years. It’s worse that it first sounds, much worse. It’s 1.65°C warmer than the start of the twentieth century, and close to 2°C warmer than the pre-industrial level of the mid-eighteenth century, the true “pre-industrial” marker.’

    “Those who thought Paris was a reasonable deal with a stated aim of keep warming “well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels” and to “pursue efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5°C” but then signed off on an agreement that means emissions will be higher in 2030 than they are now should be in a state of complete shock. And embarrassment. Australia’s chief scientist has warned the planet is “losing the battle” against climate change. It has taken just three months for the Paris climate accord to become a relic, completely disconnected to the task the world now faces.”

    Too little too late.

  23. onlooker on Tue, 21st Mar 2017 6:30 pm 

    You know Greg I used to think the real Calamity die off related to climate change was gonna wait maybe to somewhere around 2050 or later. Now, I do not think that now

  24. peakyeast on Tue, 21st Mar 2017 6:59 pm 

    Look at graphs and make your own conclusion.

    All this jibberish about record this and that has happened for all eternity when you have a scope as small as the past 100-200 years.

  25. Apneaman on Tue, 21st Mar 2017 7:34 pm 

    peakyeast, you go ahead and cling to your fossil fuel funded retard hero Anthony Watts all you like since you’re a fucking retard too.

    “According to leaked documents released in 2012, Watts has received funding from the Heartland Institute.”

    The Heartland Institute. Bahaha, they also take money from big tobacco and claim that “the science” is not settled on that either.

    “Anthony Watts

    Learn more from the Center for Media and Democracy’s research on climate change.

    “Blogger Anthony Watts

    Willard Anthony Watts (Anthony Watts) is a blogger, weathercaster and non-scientist, paid AGW denier who runs the website He does not have a university qualification and has no climate credentials other than being a radio weather announcer.”

    Climate Misinformer: Anthony Watts

    I think the combination of peaky and cloggie is more than enough to finally dispel any and all myths of the superior European intellect or education systems. They as dumbed downed as any Alberta or Alabama redneck.

  26. Sissyfuss on Tue, 21st Mar 2017 7:48 pm 

    Peakleast, wattsup is a cherry picking climate denial site known to anyone with a 3rd grade education. Go back to watching the all cartoon lineup on Fox.

  27. GregT on Tue, 21st Mar 2017 7:53 pm 

    Ya onlooker, I originally thought around the 2075 mark, when the Arctic was first expected to be ice-free in the summer months. It certainly does not look that far out anymore. Everything that I’m reading as of late, points to the beginning of a runaway greenhouse event already. Not good.

  28. Davy on Tue, 21st Mar 2017 8:03 pm 

    Deniers or not, climate is clearly destabilizing. Our planetary system is in decline and localized failure. Does the why or why not matter beyond a point? It’s apparent and their are consequences. When does an argument turn irrelevant?

  29. Boat on Tue, 21st Mar 2017 9:17 pm 


    After your dead the events will continue to unfold. Your doomer life was just a couple of generations early. Hey it’s cheap entertainment.

  30. GregT on Tue, 21st Mar 2017 10:08 pm 


    You’re dead. Not your dead. How do you ever expect anybody to take anything at all that you say seriously, if you can’t get beyond basic grade school grammar?


    And Boat, besides absolutely nothing, WTF does your comment have to do with what Davy said above?

    More nonsense.

  31. Midnight Oil on Tue, 21st Mar 2017 10:21 pm 

    Like how these chaps come on and claim; sure, the Planets warming…sure, we agree….but by how much? They go on claiming it’s just “lukewarming” and beneficial! How many times have I’ve seen these denialists write “even the IPCC”.
    Never mind not one science academy or University on the planet disputes the conclusions of the IPCC!!!!
    Not one, ZERO…NADA…
    I agree with you guys, it’s way too late and we farted around for decades on this one.
    Back in the late 1980’s, when I was a young lad and still idealistic I my outlook, took a stint with Greenpeace to ask for membership in neighborhoods. Remember the head of the office, a mature, young man pointing out Global Warming is the biggest threat to our ecosystems. This was in the late 1980s!!!
    Here we are STILL at square one…..
    2017 and on Capital Hill, The Oval Office, those in power claim it’s just a hoax!
    I think these Guys just surpassed Adolf H.
    and his Gang of Thugs as the worse scum the human race has produced. No doubt.
    Yes Sir, War ” Defense” Stocks surge with Trumpet! Heil!

  32. makati1 on Wed, 22nd Mar 2017 2:54 am 

    To admit global warming would mean having to do something about it. That ‘something’ would be to shut down ALL of the FF plants across the world, Trash most of the vehicles and spend winters in much less comfortable homes. THAT would shut down the world economy and especially capitalism. They will be boating to work in the Capital Building as the surf rolls up the steps, sweating their asses of and they will just say it is a ‘one in 500 year flood’. It is too late anyway. All we can do is experience the end in as much comfort as we can afford.

  33. Davy on Wed, 22nd Mar 2017 5:26 am 

    Thanks Greg

  34. Davy on Wed, 22nd Mar 2017 6:08 am 

    In the late 80’s I took a college elective called Ecology 101. It was a basic class nothing sophisticated but I had a good teacher. She made the point of how bad global warming could be. Back then I thought it was for the next generation. I guess in a way I was right in that regards but back then I thought we may get carbon down through sustainable development. If we could educate poor women to have less children for example. There was a flicker of hope with renewables just coming on the scene. Population was at 5BIL. We didn’t yet have widespread ecosystem failures or realized what that was. The acceleration of extinction was just becoming an issue. China was begging its move into modernism. China was the beginning of the end of any hope. China was a creation of globalism. Globalism is the end game.

    Fast-forward to today and the changes are all for the worst at all levels. We have achieved nothing. The alternatives produced so far have only added to energy usage. Sustainable development is really just more dirty development and has allowed more people. More people have been lifted out of poverty but with more people in poverty because of population growth. Extinction and ecosystem decline and localized failures are now dangerous too all life including ours. Renewables are just now showing promise of taking the place of fossil fuels but too little too late. We are past the curve and those claiming climate change is insignificant need to review the past two years. They need to consider what a blue Arctic ocean will mean. Climate deniers and those who diminish the effects are going to be surprised. Why they are not surprised now is the same reason many people are not surprised now about a collapse process. It is called techno optimism and human exceptionalism.

    It is not too late to begin to get ready for the worse but that will be a localized affair for individuals I am afraid. There is no consensus on what to do higher than that. There is a consensus and that is more affluence and more with less. This is failure. It is the hole we are already in. Less with less spread fairly is the only answer. Techno optimist are lying to themselves about green development but green development is better than Trumpism development. So I will only poke one eye instead of two.

    If you are honest then in your own little local begin to adapt yourself to a world of unpredictability at all levels. Climate change will conspire along with other predicaments to leave us with less. The world is going to shrink and your lives will shrink along with it. Food is the biggest danger and that concern is on few (rich 1BIL) people’s radar. We think the food issue is for the 3rd world but it is a danger for all. We think climate change risk to food is another next gen thing. I feel the climate change food issue is now. Food is a variable that causes states to fail even rich ones. Climate change is going to gut our modern food system in just a few years. That is likely the end game.

  35. dooma on Fri, 24th Mar 2017 3:18 am 

    ” Combat American car culture”. Good luck with that. Same goes in my country. Every election the two parties try to win votes by promising to build or widen roads. Yet we don’t even have a public transport option for our international airport. We are going to reap what we have sown. As people get fatter and dumber.

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