Ep 74 / Cancun and Steven Chu


The Cancun climate talks are in their 2nd week and Dr. Steven Chu gave a talk about renewable energy at the National Press Club. Both are discussed in this episode of Climate Files and Steven Chu’s talk is played in its entirety. As US Energy Secretary, what he has to say is very important, though I don’t agree with all of his priorities, especially those involving coal and economic growth. In fact, at times he sounds more like an economics professor than a former science professor.

In this episode we also discuss some of the latest news from Cancun, news that includes the following stories.

UN chief warns climate talks are too slow — UN chief Ban urges faster work on climate deal; Pacific islanders fear homes are doomed

According to the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), 2001-2010 has been the warmest decade on record, and 2010 is likely to be among the warmest three years since 1850.

“The final rankings will not become clear until November and December data are analyzed in early 2011. Regionally, warming has been particularly strong in East Africa, Central Asia, and Greenland and Arctic Canada. The WMO also notes the extreme Asian summer monsoon, extreme summer heatwaves in the Russian Federation, abnormal winters in many parts of the Northern Hemisphere, droughts in parts of the Amazon and a below average cyclone season”

Climate Change Policy and Practice–a great website for all things COP16.

UNEP Releases Report on Glaciers and Climate Change

And check out the official UNFCCC website here and DemocracyNow here.   Here is the Department of Energy summary of Steven Chu’s speech.

Also see this report: UNEP Releases Vital Climate Change Graphics for Latin America and the Caribbean. I was inspired in many ways by my recent trip to Costa Rica and developed a new appreciation of the amount and variation of life in the tropical forest.  Destroying forests is nothing short of mass slaughter, and that’s obvious when you are in the middle of one of them. (The photo used as the podcast art was taken in Costa Rica).

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Music by En Vogue and Molotov.
This podcast was originally released on December 8, 2010.