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Climate hoaxes and divorced Canadian drunks

While the world’s climate experts meet in Bali, the rest of the world is getting on with the serious business of elaborate hoaxes and stating the obvious. First up: activists from the Rising Tide movement successfully impersonated a major business group and pretended they were going to cut carbon emissions by 90%.

“Leading scientists say decisive action must happen now to reduce our emissions. However, corporate interests have stymied substantive action and are derailing genuine efforts of civil society to adequately address climate change,” says Matt Leonard, member of the movement (press release). Wired has a full interview.

The spoof press release was supposedly from the US Climate Action Partnership, which counts General Motors, Shell, and environmentalists’ bête noire Rio Tinto among its members. Both blogs and news sources were taken in: examples with later retractions at Thomson Financial News (story, correction) and It’s Getting Hot In Here (original, correction).

USCAP issued the following terse statement (reproduced in its entirety):

A fraudulent news release was distributed today that misstates the positions of the US Climate Action Partnership (USCAP). In addition, the release cites a website that does not represent USCAP or its views. Neither USCAP nor its member organizations were involved in the development of this website or the distribution of today’s announcement. This fraudulent website has been shut down.

Below the fold – why it’s all the fault of drunk Canadian divorcees anyway…


Two new studies out today confirm what we already know about, but in amusingly novel ways.

First up, Eunice Yu and Jianguo Liu report in PNAS that 73 billion kilowatt-hours of electricity and 627 billion gallons of water could have been saved if separated couples had stayed together. It is an established fact that people living alone have a bigger impact on the planet that people sharing accommodation. Yu and Liu note that divorce results in smaller average household size and therefore more households and a higher demand for resources (study).

alcoholPunchstock.jpgSecondly, fridges are bad. Specifically Canadian fridges. Even more specifically Canadian beer fridges. In Energy Policy Denise Young looks at the phenomenon of using old, inefficient fridges as beer fridges. “A reduction in the use of ‘beer fridges’ or a movement towards the use of newer and smaller energy-efficient models in Canada would lead to lower levels of energy use in the residential sector and, in some regions, lower emissions of [greenhouse gases],” she concludes (study).

Image: the latest planet threat / Punchstock

Cross-posted from Daniel Cressey on The Great Beyond

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