Greenhouse gases are bad for our health

It’s official. Greenhouse gases (the ones that trap heat in the atmosphere) are bad for our health! You may havEPA.jpge known that for some time now, but the EPA just announced it on Monday so now, it’s official.

The US Environmental Protection Agency today announced its final determination that greenhouse gases are a hazard to human health a widely expected move whose less-than-expected timing came on the first day of climate talks in Copenhagen, Denmark. [CSM]

Word on the street is that if Congress doesn’t do something to pass a climate bill, then the EPA will start regulating emissions on it’s own. Renegade agency!

… it is also seen as the stick part of a carrot-and-stick approach that many observers say the Obama administration is using to nudge Congress toward new climate-energy legislation. If the Senate where the bill is bogged down wont act, then its clear the EPA now stands ready to regulate carbon dioxide emissions, analysts say. [CSM]

Climate talks have begun in Copenhagen this week and are expected to not result in a climate deal. What actually will be achieved remains to be seen. Will it even be worth the carbon footprint created to bring all of the environmentalists to Copenhagen? Let’s hope.

The climate change summit at Copenhagen, which starts this week, isnt likely to end with a legally binding agreement to cut carbon dioxide emissions to curb global warming.

But thats not keeping environmental advocates, manufacturers, clean tech executives and others from attending in hopes of influencing the negotiations, which may lead to a series of less far reaching political agreements among participating countries. [TH]

And while politicians discuss climate change and carbon emissions, let’s not forget the environmental problems that remain in our backyards- in Punjab especially where the lowering water table threatens the livelihoods and way of life of too many. We can’t afford to wait for politicians to solve these problems.


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32 Responses to “Greenhouse gases are bad for our health”

  1. Amit Singh says:

    Since CO2 is the most abundant greenhouse gas, people all over the world should stop breathing, or else the EPA will fine them for "polluting" the atmosphere. How dumb can these agencies really be.

  2. Amit Singh says:

    Since CO2 is the most abundant greenhouse gas, people all over the world should stop breathing, or else the EPA will fine them for "polluting" the atmosphere. How dumb can these agencies really be.

  3. Bandana Kaur says:

    Amit, I understand your concern that carbon dioxide is a seemingly natural component of our atmosphere. Yeah, for sure, we breathe out carbon dioxide, and always have. What's not natural is the amount of carbon dioxide we've emitted into the atmosphere after the industrial revolution. We've already seen measured effects of this around the world in the form of natural disasters, desertification, and environmental refugees.

    Climate change is happening with high certainty, and is very likely to impact northern South Asia (yes, Punjab!) changes in monsoon cycles, a 30 percent reduced flow from Himalayan glaciers, and a 70 percent reduce crop output by 2100. Can you imagine the impact that would have on Punjab – to have 70 percent of agricultural production halted when it forms the backbone of the economy? Environmental questions are inevitably economic questions. And the economics of Punjab has everything to do with its political stability.

    As Sikhs and as humans, need to see the environment and human rights and the well being of Punjab and the rest of the world as inextricably linked.

  4. Bandana Kaur says:

    Amit, I understand your concern that carbon dioxide is a seemingly natural component of our atmosphere. Yeah, for sure, we breathe out carbon dioxide, and always have. What's not natural is the amount of carbon dioxide we've emitted into the atmosphere after the industrial revolution. We've already seen measured effects of this around the world in the form of natural disasters, desertification, and environmental refugees.

    Climate change is happening with high certainty, and is very likely to impact northern South Asia (yes, Punjab!) changes in monsoon cycles, a 30 percent reduced flow from Himalayan glaciers, and a 70 percent reduce crop output by 2100. Can you imagine the impact that would have on Punjab – to have 70 percent of agricultural production halted when it forms the backbone of the economy? Environmental questions are inevitably economic questions. And the economics of Punjab has everything to do with its political stability.

    As Sikhs and as humans, need to see the environment and human rights and the well being of Punjab and the rest of the world as inextricably linked.

  5. Reema says:

    Amit- How about people stop driving Hummers. Agencies are made up of people like you and me. We need to regulate our own behavior.

  6. Reema says:

    Amit- How about people stop driving Hummers. Agencies are made up of people like you and me. We need to regulate our own behavior.

  7. Bandana Kaur says:

    Yeah, Reema, it's a matter of our own behavior as well addressing the larger challenges to the wellbeing of our human family. Historically, Sikhs raised their voices against political tyranny, and we have to be astute about making these connections today.

    What does climate change mean for us as Sikhs? How would Guru Nanak or Guru Gobind Singh Ji reacted? Bhagat Puran Singh Ji? Sikhs historically have had that level of sensitivity to the woes around them; to lose that would be to lose everything we stand for.

  8. Bandana Kaur says:

    Yeah, Reema, it's a matter of our own behavior as well addressing the larger challenges to the wellbeing of our human family. Historically, Sikhs raised their voices against political tyranny, and we have to be astute about making these connections today.

    What does climate change mean for us as Sikhs? How would Guru Nanak or Guru Gobind Singh Ji reacted? Bhagat Puran Singh Ji? Sikhs historically have had that level of sensitivity to the woes around them; to lose that would be to lose everything we stand for.

  9. blog of bull says:

    You can even tell over the internet the smell coming from this crock pot blog that crap is being cooked for dinner. Hopefully its just a table for one, bon appetit Reema.

    The worst part about all the talk of pollution is the moral stance the left takes on it (the church of don’t drive a hummer unless it has a rainbow sticker on the back). The right is not any better (don’t drive a hummer unless it has swastika on the back). So who do you listen too, no one, make up your own mind, do the research, follow your conscious. You don’t need a global crisis to do the right thing.

    And if a comet hits the earth, just watch all the righties and the lefties reach deep down inside from their own emptiness gasping for a clear conscious.

  10. blog of bull says:

    You can even tell over the internet the smell coming from this crock pot blog that crap is being cooked for dinner. Hopefully its just a table for one, bon appetit Reema.

    The worst part about all the talk of pollution is the moral stance the left takes on it (the church of dont drive a hummer unless it has a rainbow sticker on the back). The right is not any better (dont drive a hummer unless it has swastika on the back). So who do you listen too, no one, make up your own mind, do the research, follow your conscious. You dont need a global crisis to do the right thing.

    And if a comet hits the earth, just watch all the righties and the lefties reach deep down inside from their own emptiness gasping for a clear conscious.

  11. Bandana Kaur says:

    Word, Amit, you're right about using more appropriate technologies. We don't want to stop farmers from meeting the requirements of their livelihoods, but you want to ensure that farmers are not running into a dead end eventually through escalating fuel costs, for example. Even if we're using catalytic converters, such technologies need to be financed from the center to be implemented on a wide scale to and that's why making sure our governments make responsible decisions is so important.

    That's also why I think EPA's decision was a good move. Unless we have good environmental governance that is accountable for our collective human future we're going to see a lot more problems. If not us brother, our children.

  12. Bandana Kaur says:

    Word, Amit, you're right about using more appropriate technologies. We don't want to stop farmers from meeting the requirements of their livelihoods, but you want to ensure that farmers are not running into a dead end eventually through escalating fuel costs, for example. Even if we're using catalytic converters, such technologies need to be financed from the center to be implemented on a wide scale to and that's why making sure our governments make responsible decisions is so important.

    That's also why I think EPA's decision was a good move. Unless we have good environmental governance that is accountable for our collective human future we're going to see a lot more problems. If not us brother, our children.

  13. Jacob McBane says:

    "Climate talks have begun in Copenhagen this week and are expected to not result in a climate deal." Well let's do our best to change that, and show our leaders how we feel!

    Invitation to Planet First! People First! Sign the deal in Copenhagen rally

    When: 3pm – 7:30pm, December 12, 2009
    Where: University of Toronto, Earth Sciences Building, 33 Wilcocks Street, Toronto.
    Description: Climate Action Network Canada is partnering with the Toronto Climate Campaign to host an indoor rally from 3pm to 5:30pm. The indoor rally will include speakers, bands, face-painting, live report backs from Copenhagen, and a signature wall.
    Following the event, from 6pm to 6:45pm we will march with candles to Queens Park, University and Wellesley Avenues, Toronto, Ontario M5H2N2. At 7pm we will hold a candlelight vigil at Queens Park, Toronto.

    To find an event scheduled in your community, visit http://www.climateactionnetwork.ca/e/action/event… and click on the map.

  14. Jacob McBane says:

    "Climate talks have begun in Copenhagen this week and are expected to not result in a climate deal." Well let's do our best to change that, and show our leaders how we feel!

    Invitation to Planet First! People First! Sign the deal in Copenhagen rally

    When: 3pm – 7:30pm, December 12, 2009
    Where: University of Toronto, Earth Sciences Building, 33 Wilcocks Street, Toronto.
    Description: Climate Action Network Canada is partnering with the Toronto Climate Campaign to host an indoor rally from 3pm to 5:30pm. The indoor rally will include speakers, bands, face-painting, live report backs from Copenhagen, and a signature wall.
    Following the event, from 6pm to 6:45pm we will march with candles to Queens Park, University and Wellesley Avenues, Toronto, Ontario M5H2N2. At 7pm we will hold a candlelight vigil at Queens Park, Toronto.

    To find an event scheduled in your community, visit http://www.climateactionnetwork.ca/e/action/event… and click on the map.

  15. Hot air says:

    There have been plenty of hot ages and ice ages during Earth's history. What tractors caused the climate to change then?

    If you say, "the scientists say we did it", and a scientist would never lie, you must not have heard of the ClimateGate scandal in which a whisteblower exposed evidence of wrongdoing in the worst science scandal of our lifetime.

    http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/jamesdelingpole

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/columnists/chr

    It's true Sikhs have raised their voices against wrongs, and if the evidence for global warming were solid, they'd be for remedial steps. However, what's come out is that "scientists" have been manipulating data to arrive at a pre-determined conclusion. So Sikhs should be against them because the highest virtue is truthful living and actions.

    So determined were the "scientists" to prevent Freedom of Information requests for their raw data, they sent deleted the data rather than provide the information. They ganged up to prevent dissenting scientists from publishing their work. They rigged their computer code to show warming. Their emails show know there is no anthropogenic global warming: "The fact is that we can’t account for the lack of warming at the moment and it is a travesty that we can’t."

    As for Punjab, the former Director-General of the Geological Survey of India, VK Raina, says there was no decline in the Himalayan glacier in 2009.

  16. Hot air says:

    There have been plenty of hot ages and ice ages during Earth's history. What tractors caused the climate to change then?

    If you say, "the scientists say we did it", and a scientist would never lie, you must not have heard of the ClimateGate scandal in which a whisteblower exposed evidence of wrongdoing in the worst science scandal of our lifetime.

    http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/jamesdelingpole

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/columnists/chr

    It's true Sikhs have raised their voices against wrongs, and if the evidence for global warming were solid, they'd be for remedial steps. However, what's come out is that "scientists" have been manipulating data to arrive at a pre-determined conclusion. So Sikhs should be against them because the highest virtue is truthful living and actions.

    So determined were the "scientists" to prevent Freedom of Information requests for their raw data, they sent deleted the data rather than provide the information. They ganged up to prevent dissenting scientists from publishing their work. They rigged their computer code to show warming. Their emails show know there is no anthropogenic global warming: "The fact is that we can’t account for the lack of warming at the moment and it is a travesty that we can’t."

    As for Punjab, the former Director-General of the Geological Survey of India, VK Raina, says there was no decline in the Himalayan glacier in 2009.

  17. Mewa Singh says:

    For those that may not know, James Delingpole is a right-wing UK columnist, something akin to Anne Coulter. In general parlance, we call them "hacks".

  18. Mewa Singh says:

    For those that may not know, James Delingpole is a right-wing UK columnist, something akin to Anne Coulter. In general parlance, we call them "hacks".

  19. Hot air says:

    > In general parlance, we call them "hacks".

    What do you call, other than a hack, a "scientist" who says:

    – "I can't see either of these papers being in the next IPCC report. Kevin and I will keep them out somehow — even if we have to redefine what the peer-review literature is!"
    – “I will be emailing the journal to tell them I’m having nothing more to do with it until they rid themselves of this troublesome editor.” (trying to gag his critics)
    – "Can you delete any emails you may have had with Keith re AR4? Keith will do likewise." (illegally thwarting Freedom of Information requests — what does he have to hide?)
    – “… in an odd way this is cheering news” (said by the Chief Scientist at CRU, Phil Jones, on learning that his critic John Daly died)

    This Climate Research Unit was at the heart of the UN's climate panel, writing their key reports, which influences other scientists.

    Forgive me, but that doesn't quite sound like a man of God, or even of science, or even a man.

    Read the primary sources yourself: http://www.eastangliaemails.com/

    It's quite unfortunate that you've chosen to dismiss the unraveling of the global warming enterprise as the work of a hack, who's a "right-winger" and probably hates brown people. Well, with the global warming hacks wanting to spend 45 trillion dollars to "fix" a non-existent problem, how do you think the brown people of Punjab will fare? After spewing factory emissions for 1.5 centuries, the West wants to prevent India and China from developing and providing electricity to their people.

    By the way, this is not to say that actual pollution (such as that occurring to Punjab's air and water) shouldn't be reduced, but that water vapor is not an air pollutant.

  20. Hot air says:

    > In general parlance, we call them "hacks".

    What do you call, other than a hack, a "scientist" who says:

    – "I can't see either of these papers being in the next IPCC report. Kevin and I will keep them out somehow — even if we have to redefine what the peer-review literature is!"
    – “I will be emailing the journal to tell them I’m having nothing more to do with it until they rid themselves of this troublesome editor.” (trying to gag his critics)
    – "Can you delete any emails you may have had with Keith re AR4? Keith will do likewise." (illegally thwarting Freedom of Information requests — what does he have to hide?)
    – “… in an odd way this is cheering news” (said by the Chief Scientist at CRU, Phil Jones, on learning that his critic John Daly died)

    This Climate Research Unit was at the heart of the UN's climate panel, writing their key reports, which influences other scientists.

    Forgive me, but that doesn't quite sound like a man of God, or even of science, or even a man.

    Read the primary sources yourself: http://www.eastangliaemails.com/

    It's quite unfortunate that you've chosen to dismiss the unraveling of the global warming enterprise as the work of a hack, who's a "right-winger" and probably hates brown people. Well, with the global warming hacks wanting to spend 45 trillion dollars to "fix" a non-existent problem, how do you think the brown people of Punjab will fare? After spewing factory emissions for 1.5 centuries, the West wants to prevent India and China from developing and providing electricity to their people.

    By the way, this is not to say that actual pollution (such as that occurring to Punjab's air and water) shouldn't be reduced, but that water vapor is not an air pollutant.

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