Study warns of stark costs of failing to counter climate change

The report, regarded by experts as the most authoritative assessment yet of the costs of climate change, will argue that the developed economies, led by the US, face far higher costs if they do not act.

Sir Nicholas gave a private briefing on his review to a meeting of leaders of the world's 20 most polluting nations in Mexico yesterday. The report is said to be framed so that the Bush administration recognises it will not cost the earth to solve climate change, but will cost the earth literally and financially if it does not.

Speaking on the opening day of the conference Margaret Beckett, the foreign secretary, said: "It is sound economic sense to respond to climate change and economic nonsense not to."

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Read the Stern Report


Making Money By Feeding Confusion Over Global Warming

Electric Utility Pays $100,000 To Global Warming Naysayer

July 27, 2006 — - Ever wonder why so many people still seem to be confused about global warming? The answer it seems, confusion means profit -- especially if you're in some parts of the energy business.

One Colorado electric cooperative openly admits it paid $100,000 to a university academic who prides himself on being a global warming skeptic. Scientists and consumer advocates say the co-op is trying to confuse its clients about the virtually total scientific consensus on the causes of global warming.

The energy co-op, Intermountain Rural Electric Association, is heavily invested in power plants that burn coal, one of the chief sources of greenhouse gasses that scientists agree is quickly pushing earth's average temperature to dangerous levels.

ABC News has obtained a copy of a nine-page document that IREA general manager Stanley Lewandowski Jr. addressed to the more than 900 fellow members of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association. The document is a wide ranging condemnation of carbon taxes and mandatory caps on greenhouse gas emissions that Lewandowski writes would threaten to "erode most, if not all, the benefits of coal-fired generation."

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Scientist Denounces TV Ads for Deliberately Misleading Public on Global Warming

Oil Industry-Financed Ads Misrepresent Global Warming Research Results

A senior scientist whose research is being cited in television ads that challenge the reality of global warming has denounced the ads as a “deliberate effort to confuse and mislead the public” and says the group that produced the ads is misrepresenting his work to support its false claims.

The Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI), a Washington D.C.-based nonprofit public policy that is partially funded by large oil companies, is running a series of national television advertisements claiming that warnings about global warming are “alarmist.” The ads were timed to coincide with theatrical release of An Inconvenient Truth, a documentary film starring former U.S. Vice President Al Gore that provides scientific evidence of global warming and urges people to take action to help reduce it.

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The new study, “Balance as Bias: Global Warming and the U.S. Prestige Press,” examined coverage of human contributions to global warming in the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, and the Wall Street Journal from 1988 to 2002 to assess how scientific findings were conveyed to readers.

“By giving equal time to opposing views, these newspapers significantly downplayed scientific understanding of the role humans play in global warming,” said researcher Maxwell T. Boykoff

They also note the role of concerted “disinformation” campaigns funded by carbon-based industries that catered to journalists’ need to represent opposing viewpoints.

The Boykoffs found that in 1989 and 1990, government officials, armed with the assertions of skeptics, surpassed scientists as the most cited source in prestige-press articles. Calling for more research as a precursor to taking mandatory action, these politicians contributed to coverage that indicated an even split within the scientific community, at a time of general agreement among scientists about the existence of anthropogenic influences on global warming.

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Was Confusion Over Global Warming a Con Job?

That lack of concern may have been just what big oil wanted.

It's not as if the information hasn't been out there: A new ad by the Environmental Defense Fund warns time is running out to combat climate change, adding, "Our future is up to you."

The vast majority of scientists has determined global warming to be a real threat. So why has it taken so long to convince Americans?

Misinformation Campaign

Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Ross Gelbspan blames a 15-year misinformation campaign by the oil and coal industries.

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The world heated up by about 0.6 degrees last century, and the 1990s were the warmest decade on record, the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) says.

Most mainstream scientists believe that increased emissions of greenhouse cases, particularly carbon dioxide, are contributing to the warming of the planet. This graph shows how carbon dioxide levels have increased as the world has industrialised.

Researcher alleges climate cover-up

BOULDER - The American public is not hearing the full story on global warming because Bush administration officials are muzzling government scientists, a top climate researcher said Wednesday.

Warren Washington, a senior scientist at the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, said that Bush appointees are suppressing information about climate change, restricting journalists' access to federal scientists and rewriting agency news releases to stress global warming uncertainties.

"The news media is not getting the full story, especially from government scientists," Washington told about 160 people attending the first day of "Climate Change and the Future of the American West," a three-day conference sponsored by the University of Colorado's Natural Resources Law Center.

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America's leading climate scientists censored and gagged

A US government whistleblower tells Panorama how scientific reports about global warming have been systematically changed and suppressed.

Some of America's leading climate scientists claim to Panorama that they have been censored and gagged by the administration.

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Exxon Funding Climate Change Denial

Britain's leading scientists have challenged the US oil company ExxonMobil to stop funding groups that attempt to undermine the scientific consensus on climate change.

In an unprecedented step, the Royal Society, Britain's premier scientific academy, has written to the oil giant to demand that the company withdraws support for dozens of groups that have "misrepresented the science of climate change by outright denial of the evidence".

The scientists also strongly criticise the company's public statements on global warming, which they describe as "inaccurate and misleading".

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NASA Scientist Slienced

The top climate scientist at NASA says the Bush administration has tried to stop him from speaking out since he gave a lecture last month calling for prompt reductions in emissions of greenhouse gases linked to global warming.

The scientist, James E. Hansen, longtime director of the agency's Goddard Institute for Space Studies, said in an interview that officials at NASA headquarters had ordered the public affairs staff to review his coming lectures, papers, postings on the Goddard Web site and requests for interviews from journalists.

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They are covering up climate research

Don't be fooled they have penetrated even the highest places.

White House officials have undermined their own government scientists' research into climate change to play down the impact of global warming, an investigation by The Observer can reveal.

The disclosure will anger environment campaigners who claim that efforts to cut greenhouse gas emissions are being sabotaged because of President George W. Bush's links to the oil industry.

Emails and internal government documents obtained by The Observer show that officials have sought to edit or remove research warning that the problem is serious. They have enlisted the help of conservative lobby groups funded by the oil industry to attack US government scientists if they produce work seen as accepting too readily that pollution is an issue.

Central to the revelations of double dealing is the discovery of an email sent to Phil Cooney, chief of staff at the White House Council on Environmental Quality, by Myron Ebell, a director of the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI). The CEI is an ultra-conservative lobby group that has received more than $1 million in donations since 1998 from the oil giant Exxon, which sells Esso petrol in Britain.

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