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All IPCC definitions taken from Climate Change 2007: The Physical Science Basis. Working Group I Contribution to the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Annex I, Glossary, pp. 941-954. Cambridge University Press.

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2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #13

Posted on 29 March 2020 by John Hartz

Story of the Week... Toon of the Week... Coming Soon on SkS... Climate Feedback Claim Review... SkS Week in Review... Poster of the Week...

Story of the Week...

‘Misinformation kills’: The link between coronavirus conspiracies and climate denial

 Misinformation Kills

Grist / Rob Kim / Stringer / CSA Images 

Scientific warnings are being ignored, misinformation is spreading, and prominent Republicans have said that addressing the problem is either too expensive or too difficult. No, this isn’t climate change: This is the new reality of the novel coronavirus, the deadly pandemic sweeping the planet.

Over the past several weeks, as global cases of COVID-19 have climbed to over 500,000, conspiracy theories and fake news have also been on the rise. On Monday a man died after ingesting chloroquine phosphate, an ingredient in an anti-malarial drug that President Trump had heralded as a coronavirus cure.

Meanwhile, the website Snopes has been forced to scale back its fact-checking work in response to the overwhelming number of fake stories around the pandemic. (Some disturbing highlights: claims that the coronavirus was released by world governments to distract from a planet-ending doomsday asteroid, or that breathing hot air from a hair dryer can kill the virus.)

‘Misinformation kills’: The link between coronavirus conspiracies and climate denial by Shannon Osaka, Grist, Mar 28, 2020 


Toon of the Week...

2020 T00n 13

Hat tip to the Stop Climate Science Denial Facebook page.


Coming Soon on SkS...

  • Scientists share their grief, anger, and hope over climate change (Greenman)
  • Could the Atlantic Overturning Circulation ‘shut down’? (Richard Wood & Laura Jackson)
  • SkS New Research for Week #13 (Doug Bostrom)
  • YouTube's Climate Denial Problem (zentuoro)
  • How does the way we define methane emissions impact the perception of its effects on global warming? (Justine Wickman)
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #14 (John Hartz)
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #14 (John Hartz)

Climate Feedback Claim Review...

CO2 can increase plant growth in greenhouses while also negatively affecting ecosystems and human societies

CLAIM: "CO2 is a plant nutrient...it’s not a pollutant that threatens human civilization. If CO2 was so terrible for the planet, then installing a CO2 generator in a greenhouse would kill the plants."

VERDICT: Flawed Reasoning 

SOURCE: If carbon dioxide is so bad for the planet, why do greenhouse growers buy CO2 generators to double plant growth? by Mike Adams, Natural News, June 22, 2013

KEY TAKEAWAY: CO2 can increase plant growth but its effects, which decrease with higher concentrations, are limited by the availability of other plant nutrients, such as nitrogen and phosphorus. CO2 emissions can negatively impact natural ecosystems through global warming—e.g. by increasing evaporation and drying up soils in some regions or increasing heavy precipitation in others. 

CO2 can increase plant growth in greenhouses while also negatively affecting ecosystems and human societies by Nikki Forrester, Climate Feedback, Mar 19, 2020


Poster of the Week...

2020 Poster 13 


SkS Week in Review... 

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