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Thread: Kiwis reacting to global warming

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    Default Kiwis reacting to global warming

    Summer poll: As the world warms, Kiwis are reducing their energy use
    Thursday January 04, 2007
    By Errol Kiong

    People are making lifestyle changes as concern over global warming grows. Nearly four in five people (77.7 per cent) polled in a Herald-Digipoll survey believed they needed to make lifestyle changes to reduce global warming.

    Two-thirds of the 1003 people surveyed had installed energy-efficient lightbulbs in their home while more than half (56.3 per cent) had cut down on car use. Two in five people (39.1 per cent) had switched to a more fuel-efficient car.

    Andrew Mackenzie, managing director of Albany Toyota, said car sales trends had been driven by high petrol prices and concerns over climate change."There is definitely a trend towards people giving consideration to the cost of running a vehicle. They're also thinking about what the vehicle has done to the environment in the past and what they can do to help the environment in the future."

    The firm has seen "at least a 10 per cent increase in sales" of its small cars in the past six months. Sales of its hybrid vehicle, the Prius - new and used - have also increased steadily.

    But George Seymour, managing director of Honda New Zealand, believed car sales trends have been influenced more by fuel prices than "a feeling about global warming, unfortunately".He said consumers were beginning to revert to bigger cars as fuel prices drift off a historic high.

    "Unfortunately, fuel prices have come down. I would have liked to see them stay up." If fuel prices remained stagnant, the shift to small cars would slow, he said.

    For every car it sells, Honda NZ funds the planting of 10 native trees."We're doing as much as we can to promote the global warming story and social responsibility." Mr Seymour believed Government action was needed."They need to get on, quite frankly. They've been studying and studying and studying, and they need to make decisions."

    Nevertheless, National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research principal scientist David Wratt said the poll results were heartening."It shows that people are thinking about the issue seriously," said Dr Wratt.

    He said concern about global warming had been growing."People in general are starting to understand the science rather more and it's been helped by things like the Al Gore movie."

    He said the finding that 16 per cent did not believe in global warming was not a surprise. Despite consensus on the issue among the world's leading climate scientists, climate change sceptics are often given equal coverage in news stories in an attempt to provide "balance". This confused the issue in people's minds.

    Professor Augie Auer, of the sceptics group the Climate Science Coalition, meanwhile, was not surprised so many believed in global warming."We are not surprised so many people think there will be a problem for New Zealand because that's all they read and hear on our news media, and from Government politicians."

    He said warming would take place at a similar rate to what was already happening, "most of that from the same natural causes which man can never control"."Restricting emissions of carbon dioxide and bringing in carbon taxes is nonsense and will achieve nothing but cost and inconvenience."
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    Default Re: Kiwis reacting to global warming

    More gloom and doom. *:-?

    Climate change: it's coming our way.....
    Monday January 22, 2007
    By Robin McKie



    According to experts climate change will mean devastating storms, rising sea levels, disappearing snow and deadly heatwaves

    Global warming will have a far more destructive and earlier impact than previously estimated.
    A draft of the most authoritative report yet produced on climate change, the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, shows the frequency of devastating storms will increase dramatically.

    Sea levels will rise over the century by about half a metre; snow will disappear from all but the highest mountains; deserts will spread; oceans will become acidic, leading to the destruction of coral reefs and atolls; and deadly heatwaves will become more prevalent.

    The impact will be catastrophic, forcing hundreds of millions to flee their homelands, particularly in tropical, low-lying areas, while creating waves of immigrants whose movements will strain the economies of even the most affluent countries.

    More here .
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    Default Re: Kiwis reacting to global warming

    The bad news.

    Sobering report for energy users large and small
    Saturday February 03, 2007
    By Brian Fallow

    The latest word from the world's climate scientists is both sobering and heartening.
    Though it will inevitably be attacked by a sceptical minority, the report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change will stand as the official word on the subject until it is updated in five or six years.

    It is the work of many hundreds of scientists and has been run past more than 2500 expert reviewers.

    The panel's best estimate of how much the planet could warm by the end of the century - within the lifetime, in other words, of some children already born - is sobering.

    Just what it will mean in terms of environmental and human impacts, and what we can do about it, will be spelled out in later parts of the report due in April and May.

    But at the same time it is encouraging that the scientists are now more than 90 per cent sure it is humanity's activities that are responsible for the warming, because it means we can do something about it, provided we don't wait too long.

    More here .

    Followed by this …. good news.
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    Hurray for Hamilton - it's inland.

    Climate change not all doom and gloom
    Updated 3:55PM Tuesday April 10, 2007



    New Zealand will become more vulnerable to floods, storms and fire as a result of global warming and climate change over the next century, an international report released today claims.

    Scientists told media the outlook for New Zealand was not all "doom and despondency" despite the report's bleak forecast.

    New Zealand Climate Science Coalition spokesman Augie Auer said, that the report was more of the same.

    The projections had no realism at all, with a computer generating different outcomes based on contrived situations, he said.

    "They have no way of determining what will happen."

    More here.
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    Thanks for posting that latest article, MB. Karin has been getting all Doom-and-Gloom-y since she read a tiny blurb about there being water problems forecast for NZ. Maybe now I can get her interested in NZ again.
    If men had wings and bore black feathers, few of them would be clever enough to be crows.
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    Ratepayers face big bills to fight climate change
    5:00AM Wednesday April 11, 2007
    By Errol Kiong

    New Zealand's ecosystems and coastal communities face threats from dramatic changes to the world's climate - and ratepayers face a big burden in paying to combat them.

    Niwa scientist Jim Salinger warns the effects will be substantial if nothing is done.

    Dr Salinger was the lead author of the Australia and New Zealand chapter in the report of the United Nations' Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

    But local authorities - which will have to pick up a big part of the bill - warned last night that they face an almost impossible task.

    "We simply can't do all of this to mitigate, to adapt as a nation, and pay for it all out of property tax. It's just impossible," said Local Government New Zealand president Basil Morrison.

    Local government will have to pay for upgrading infrastructure such as stormwater networks to cope with heavier rains and protecting the water supply in drought areas.

    Mr Morrison said councils would need to look at everything from transport to land use and building controls.

    More here .
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    Quote Originally Posted by selchie View Post
    Karin has been getting all Doom-and-Gloom-y since she read a tiny blurb about there being water problems forecast for NZ. Maybe now I can get her interested in NZ again.
    Quote Originally Posted by NZ Herald
    "They have no way of determining what will happen."
    I think that sums it all up nicely. ::)

    I think there'll be enough wet to go around during our lifetime anyway, Selchie. Some places have had short-lived droughts during the summer, but you can get those in any country.
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    Oh yes, I know that. I think Karin is being a negatroid. Beginning in 1987, the west coast of the US was hit by a 7-year drought - similar I suppose to what Australia has recently experienced. Water rationing was the name of the game, and a lot of water-saving techniques were inplemented and devices developed. We got through it just fine.
    If men had wings and bore black feathers, few of them would be clever enough to be crows.
    - Rev. Henry Ward Beecher, mid-1800s

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    Meltdown for Franz Josef Glacier
    5:00AM Thursday April 12, 2007



    One of New Zealand's outstanding tourist attractions is melting away, glaciologists say.

    The tongue of the iconic Franz Josef Glacier on the West Coast will melt away in the next 100 years, a team of glaciologists from Canterbury and Victoria universities have found.

    The researchers used a computer model to test the effect of the predictions from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) on the glacier.

    "Even with the minimum amount of likely warming over the next century, the glacier will shrink in length by 4km, and reduce in size to three-quarters of its current volume," Brian Anderson from Victoria University said.

    While Franz Josef Glacier is currently advancing, that was only because it was unusually responsive to short-term climate cycles such as El Nino, he said.

    El Nino causes lower temperatures and greater snowfall in the Southern Alps over three to five-year periods.

    Associate Professor Wendy Lawson, head of geography at Canterbury University, said glaciers responded quickly to changes in climate.

    More here .
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    It's interesting to see Franz Josef and Fox Glaciers, and the outwash plains that were covered by them only a couple of hundred years ago. It's sad to see the glaciers recede, but also fascinating to see the sucession of lichens and plants as they reinhabit these areas.
    If men had wings and bore black feathers, few of them would be clever enough to be crows.
    - Rev. Henry Ward Beecher, mid-1800s

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