Robert Samuelson: Global warming forever?

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  • Traveller Farmington, UT
    Jan. 22, 2019 9:21 a.m.

    Mr. Samuelson, what makes you think nuclear power is unsafe?

    Or rather, what makes it less safe than fossil fuels, which support regimes like Iran, Saudi Arabia, and Russia, which cause the damage caused by oil spills and broken pipelines, and of course climate change, which you seem to think is something that requires substantial investment to avoid?

    You also seem to agree that wind power, solar, etc. are not viable choices.

    So considering the alternative, why don't you support nuclear power?

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    Jan. 21, 2019 6:59 a.m.

    To "jfreed27" and tell us when government projections have ever been right.

  • jfreed27 Los Angeles, CA
    Jan. 20, 2019 11:37 a.m.

    The projected carbon fee and dividend act of HR 7173 would cut 90% of carbon emissions by 2050, close to this side of utter disaster. Solar/wind is cheaper than even nat gas (a few c /kwh) and far, far cheaper than nuclear. The time to act is now. We have dithered long enough!

  • Blue Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 19, 2019 3:10 p.m.

    Just for clarification, human CO2 emissions upset the natural balance of the carbon cycle. Man-made CO2 in the atmosphere has increased by a third since the pre-industrial era, creating an artificial forcing of global temperatures which is warming the planet. While fossil-fuel derived CO2 is a very small component of the global carbon cycle, the extra CO2 is cumulative because the natural carbon exchange cannot absorb all the additional CO2.

    The Earth’s usual mechanisms (mostly the oceans) are losing their ability to absorb all the extra CO2 and it’s resulting in warming oceans, rising sea levels, major changes in habitat, and a dramatic increase in extreme (and extremely expensive) weather events.

    The most expensive thing we can be doing regarding human-caused climate change is to do nothing.

  • Frozen Fractals Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 19, 2019 3:02 p.m.

    "So how is it that this 1% is causing global warming? "

    It's more like 3% but it's still a small percentage so your question is still the same, how does it warm? Based on paleoclimate data atmospheric CO2 changes very slowly, from around 180 to 290ppm and back down again over a period of 100,000 years. But we went from 300 to 400ppm in less than a century. So something is changing extremely rapidly now and it is that human contribution.

    This is because natural sources and sinks are so close to balanced that atmospheric CO2 with only natural forcing is like a bank account with roughly equal gains and expenses each year (virtually no change at all if left to itself). Human involvement, however, is like an interest rate on the atmospheric CO2 account steadily increasing concentrations over time.

  • GrainOfSalt Draper, UT
    Jan. 19, 2019 11:51 a.m.

    I actually agree with liberal larry. The government should stop all subsidies and take a giant step to reducing the federal deficit!

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    Jan. 19, 2019 11:46 a.m.

    NOOOOOOO!!! Not another one. Cap and dividend doesn't work. Everywhere it is tried it hurts the very people that they claim to be giving the dividends to.

    You can't tax your way to reduced carbon emissions without hurting people or economies. If you want to reduce carbon emissions, figure out what it would take to get fully electric cars to perform like gasoline ones and cos just as much. Next, get more nuclear power to recharge the cars.

    A carbon tax and dividend is nothing more than a redistribution of wealth that just transfers more money to political appointees than to the poor.

    To "liberal larry " but per kWh the wind/solar power get more subsidies than fossil fuels. So, if subsidies are bad why are they not bad for renewable energy?

  • liberal larry Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 19, 2019 11:13 a.m.

    Another big step in reducing CO/pollution would be to get rid of the myriad government subsidies to the petroleum industry!

    Deniers howl when Tesla gets a tax credit on the sale of it's electric vehicles, but according to wikipedia:

    "a 2016 IMF study estimated that global fossil fuel subsidies were $5.3 trillion in 2015"!!!

    Maybe we should worry more about our children's future than the oil corporations, bottom line!

  • GrainOfSalt Draper, UT
    Jan. 19, 2019 8:22 a.m.

    Man-made greenhouse gases contribute only 1% of the total greenhouse gases in the world, with the other 99% coming from natural causes. The earth, as established science acknowledges, has a cycle of warming and cooling. Much of North America was covered by ice at one time, and at others was partly covered by a shallow ocean. So how is it that this 1% is causing global warming? Do we really need to implement a carbon tax in light of these facts? The author makes it sound like the tax is a minor thing, but it isn't. Government is wasteful, and another wasteful tax program in the face of man's questionable influence over global warming is a bad idea.