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tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  December 27, 2014 2:30am-4:31am EST

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community and say lisa. . and if it's something then where we need to change the probation laws. . how do we not prevent people om being disfamiliar lip and their community at the same time. and help for public safety. >> let me just say that -- i need your opinion. also a knee george bush retch. -- with sex offenders. somebody may have engaged in a relationship with a girl only two years younger. she's a sex offender but for the rest of his life he can't live thin 1,000 feet of a playground.
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when we were parol with these guys. . but i'm talking about people that have helped come under that classification that now because of law we can find for themselves a safe product to live. same thing with the gun situation. if you go to drop it off and then you end upped getting arrested for something. sometimes we have to pull it back. d i will say they need to be questioned >> that you were not happy. >> you have something you wanted to add? er yeah, i just wanted to say that at this stage kind of going back to what ambassador blackwell said with regard to crime. because i worked the last seven years with the perfect dog las
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ound dation. >> foundation. >> i think that we have a tremendous opportunity right now because many of theme candidates with regard to the second amendment. >> they have a second amendment. but yet they come from community where is they do have huge problems as it relates to guns and crime. the point i'm making is that we toe such a great opportunity really help to shape thought and new policy as it relates to overcriminalization in these communities because, you know, i'm -- i lived in i hope. nd shem trained with ken
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cuchanelli and bop mcdonald. were they -- we looked at matches that are criminals. so should someone who was, you no, charged as an adult when ou y were 17 years old for, y felony. then they means that you no longer for the rest of your life will have the right to vote, right? in a u come out of jail society that has become so law based. we a knee-jerk reaction. we want to create a law for every problem. when creating more and more images won't be a two. they will relocate at overcriminalization and communities whether it's regard.
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drugs or whether it's inviting. -- i believe because people do a crime, they should be responsible for paying their we have ty inadvertently have problems. age.similarly at a young those who were talking about it mostly right now are those who are coming from the center right side of the aisle in a meaningful right. i just think that those in urban communities these to think about this in a particular way. does it minister the floor, my first trip to jail is not because i committed a crime. in jail ause i visit because i was hoping young guys
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who had made a young turn in their lives. i believe those are particularly from to -- we artsed from a unique perspective that could give rise to better policies. >> and i think that was the -- i was in a meetings. and i -- luke gingrich. i want to say something that i felt was right arm. he said look there are those of us who took a strinjientpofplgts nd early 19190's and basically were lock them up throw away the key. .t is now time for us to have
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and for hard core criminals that should be locked up and for a very long time. and those who made a simple mistake and with the right intervention can get their lives kinny again. and if we're nude to say that if you go to a right arm copyright. what do you sen it on tv. --. those things need to be seriously looked at. seriously looked at it. >> the last point i wanted to with tight end three regard to the polo. we have access gun. this is not an issue with what
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happens when someone who's population has just been letous. who. it almost like she'll be using and supervised getting access to fire arms and this runs very differently. so in very rule area where is children have access to the family gone and in sort of a general training with regard to gun access it runs differently. in urban areas you have to acknowledge that the shared present as it problem with a closer look. the problem is not just by having someone who's isa felon n the house. the last point -- for me this is about choice. question about whether it's an advocating a and choices about
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how they respond to deadly threats an i think there are lots of people throughout who are principle will choose not to use gun but those people who do choose are exercising the right to do that. >> i have a bunch of questions here and those two are kind of similar. so address to professor johnson and professor blackwell. do you think the history is not taught in public schools in this day and age of gun grabbing? that means people who are not pro-gun. gun grabbing laws and events like ferguson. will it benefit our communities defense? he be ons of and then it was not another , estion to professor hunt bishop hunt. it was not that long ago that gun safety and marksman ship was
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taught in our schools and and i higher percentage of legal gun owners. do you think teaching proper gun safety and markmanship might keep them away from guns and gangs. so, gentlemen. >> the answer to the question as to whether or not first, i think >> i think it's important to because i ulums, think that we should be actually much more forceful in our local school district demanding that
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that integral part of the and the fact that these were veterans who had been in world war ii and korea who had, in fact, defended in our national interest and put their blood and rip their lives --. so the answer to the question is that we should constantly never, never, never give up on making that part for me. is a valuable asset for us. there's no reason why we can't get the work professor johnson and others and make it, you home and to folks who are schools. we need to take social meeze yeah and make sure that the most
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accurate depiction of history is is made. look, i shot my first was a gun. troop 75. and he is in fact. , gun talking about safety? and i am for indeeded to him to him for this very reason. my wife's family who is from west virginia, they are coal .ining family a foot. of with my ability to shoot and eat. [applause]
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>> we've got a few question, gentlemen. i want to talk about the second question about the programs in the school. my kid did graduate from public chools and they con seemed family chooses to have a ghun the home, even if it's a single mom. >> teach your children about how to handle a gun. that means you to be traded. this will be in the hall for your protection. so it's more of a community thing. and i don't know hoom turkey bands right there. but i will say that it is porn for those -- actually they have almost because it wasn't out her
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about in la we're talk breathing responsible. and i respect that how do you aren't the vealt. if you're going to have a women in the house. do you think it will make you go to sleep? >> yes. happy you get this message out there. i'm actually sort of edge couraged partly because i've worked on this issue but there are other two other recent books . he has a book called this nonviolent stuff will get you killed. i did menls it earl and the name has a book about mississippi freedom movement. folks in the 1950's 1960's called we will shoot that.
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so the theme is -- i've actually been sort of encouraging. i think it's very hard to get changes in the curriculum at the high school level. but i am encouraged by the internet. it's what people understand as collection and i maybe you bypass. on this issue. another friend of mine brian h. patrick has a book called bypassing the social media or soiled media. people in the control carry movement moved pass the long stream. and r so i think those who have an issue as well. >> you should say we are ok with you deliberating the
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information. depending on how they zoit. so do these two questions kind of tie in together. i was an elected official with lots of gentlemen where gun violence in a where everyone has a gun and there is no gun violence. rye. and then this -- [laughter] and then this question. and --t county shows the he item and that's two items here in kentucky. the red -- the legalities of trying to obtain a gun in irving, he's this muff higher.
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>> they know the other parts of our the state. maybe it's something that the or other people have some comments about that. we carryed today in the mcdonald's case. response from the gun ntrol and gun ca troll in of making it such a bureaucratic nightmare that is still reduced, the average person's ability to for their and use protection. a gun. f.b.i. statistics show this that
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where, in fact, you have allowed . you have reduced crime. and that's just the argument. accurate of that. and that's how -- the statusics offer the show. you know, they cool out or the gun or not fall. >> you have to use the mic. >> the one thing i wanted to -- llish is >> no, pass that down. so the one development is is that people who want you in public office or making it difficult for the next marginal
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owen or two. the background logic that annie decreased the number of juffers he's good. there's some rediction or the thick that's commuter more. these people will talk about disagreement concealed carriages . with regard to the decline in he recently crime right. he is we now have a record number of fire arms in the u.s. nd than the gun crime weight has gone down over the last 10 .ears and we have basically gun owner shim, right. they want to show them that the
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decline in an any cre mental incress we'll generate our gun violence. people end up trying to put real strong strong federer. i think in that short time of time. be a reputation of that theory. ok, yes. you missed this so i have a question for each of you. , what is your position on university background checks. >> right. because i have it scheduled. but if you give one minute, two minute answer because we're about to go for our break on the next channel.
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>> right. [applause] do you want to tell us why you're post. >> one, it doesn't work in the hands of government that can can't get it done. it's the same work. [laughter] yeah, i agree that that's not really the point you get in there. we've still dealing with the challenge and whether you can change the person. so to depending on a background check is the only thing that will determine if a person has a gun, that's problematic. >> what i said was right -- because that's what i believe. but if you wanted me to go deeper, let me just tell you a
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little bit. when you say give me an example. look, we put a lot of emphasis because there are people who have fallen through cracks. but the reality is is that their . rst amendment right trumps trumps our right to know therefore. it's been rendered in effective and useless, period. [applause] >> like many of these i'm sympathetic to people who feel this way. but there's a scrip clur that says it seems right but the end therefore will be death an destruction. at the end of the night they don't really do what they're intended to do. and for those reasons that's
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why. >> i'm con apply maded. this would be an objection. you can't do it without a system of registration. and i think that a system of registration is worgs. the question is can you mupt santa's in place to get you very close to what you would get with a university without doing this big command and control structure that would create the. in my state people who sell private fire arms, i'm a member of a commuter board. quire that people as who are buyers show they're con seemed and turned up to be a sur can't. of nemb this room.
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nobody in this room wants to sell a gun to a criminal oar madman or some philip. i got the gun from johnson. somebody asked me this at another panel. i said a boy. just say it. just say don't sell to anybody about the sipi shouse about. make it an incentive that affects the and you will get, the answer is interested to sellers. you will get 99% of the people that you can get. the other 1% you're not going to get them anyway. they're not going to comply. don't enforce it. don't have a scheme of legislation. i think if you call and ged away . as they get into the golden. . that you would do most of the
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work that you want it done. and i don't care what you call it, people wanted to call it care. d -- i don't i think by could do that without the political. [applause] well, we -- and again i guessworked up against me so the president is a big guy just like the university back ground chicks. put illegal guns on the street froms of america. i don't trust the federal government. . so we're about to go to a break. and i'm going to read a question from the audiences that this panel is not going to answer it. i'm going to save it for our second panel. so the question is why has noun
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system. an unfare don't you think that associating goun control. is your and there that already exists. so i happen to know that our second panel will be. you to have a five-minute break. few you come back. >> could i ask you a question. >> lease. and my city for decades now. after his seventh visit to the city ofiness natty. mark twain was asked what husband city of the midwest was. and low wist bill. >> he said i would get to cincinnati as lock as i could. i'd be happy like the rest of
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the world. [laughter] >> conservative. -- thank now on for you for joining our panel. >> this week's renewable energy summit. first we'll hear from lester brown. aauthor of 4r7850 books including great transition shifting from fossil fuel to wind and solar energy. then a crferings circumstances. bob irvin who says there is a fresh water crisis in the u.s. nd around the world. then she will look into the impact of large scale farming. >> the energy summit was held in aspect, colorado earlier this year. up next, two keynote speeches. you'll here fromlesor brown.
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and the great transition. mu had been grumpy. but wind and solar energy. the i. will go unextinct. [applause] >> thank you, chip. thank you for organizing our day and thanks for the invitation to come back again. my topic as i recall is the great transition, the great transition is a shift from coal and oil to solar and wind. . and most of us know about a little sew ar energy and wind
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far there. but things are happening very fast now. i think you're going to see plains. alf century of the principle sources in the world will be solar and wind not coal and oil. glimpses of e the new energy economy that we can now see at various places in world, last year denmark got of its electricity from wind. december, it was 55%. country to get a major share, the major share, of electricity from wind. but it's not finished.
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the goal is to take it up to 100%. portugal, spain and ireland are with 22, 18 and 17% of their electricity coming from wind. in spain, interestingly, wind the principal source of electricity in the country. nuclear.s overtaken in south australia, wind farms replacing coal-fired power plants and doing it very fast. in china, wind-generated not onlyty has overtaken nuclear-generated you look at but if the curves, the nuclear curve looks like this. looks like this. it's just a runaway now. it's exciting to see the other largest economy in the world now
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moving so fast toward wind. there are seven wind under construction in china. each of which will have at least 10,000 megawatts of generating capacity. that's 10 nuclear power plants. the largest, which is not surprisingly in mongolia, a particularly wind-rich air, when it is completed, have 38,000 megawatts of generating capacity. 38,000 megawatts is equal to the consumption of poland. marginalot smalltime, additions to the world's energy supply. this is big-time. we've not seen anything like it. and we've not seen any other coaly source, including and oil and nuclear scale up to levels we're seeing with wind, for example, with
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10,000-megawatt wind farms. whole new ball game. andhe united states, iowa south dakota are the leaders in eachelectric generation, getting about 20% of their wind.icity from iowa wants to take this to 50% within the next four years. may become the first u.s. state where wind becomes the energy.source of electricity. of how is this revolution happened? has it managed to move so quickly? incidentally, there was supposed place, alock here some timer, and i can't -- where is it? it, that's fine. the advances have come from
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policies or indeed subsidies, from environmental groups. sierra club launched, in the beginning of 2010, a beyond coal this country. at that time, we had 530 coal-fired power plants. their goal is to close every one of them. far, they've closed 140. 530, now down to 390. their goal is to close every one not later than 2030. then we say, well, what about china? well, china is moving very fast. trusts in china faced with the shrinking use of coal are on the verge of bankruptcy. in china six provinces which have set their own
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coal-reduction goals. they range from cuts of 5% to 50% between now and 2020. this easy are individual provinces, simply picking it up and saying basically coal has to going to do our part. there are also a number of the world who are pushing for 100% clean energy, like san francisco, wellington, new zealand, just to set a couple. so a number of cities are setting very ambitious goals, ambitious than the goals of the states in which they are located. what about india? is a major source of carbon emissions, heavily for electricity generation, for example. but it's shifting. they have now designed in india
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solar-driven water pumps that are much cheaper than diesel pumps. indian farmers currently have 26 diesel-powered -- is that ten minutes? oh, good. they have 26 million diesel-powered irrigation pumps. and the plan is to replace every one of them with a solar-powered pump.tion and save a lot of money in the process. payback time on these solar-powered water pumps is one to four years, depending on the situation and far down they're pumping the water. earlier, the scaling
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up that we're seeing with wind farms. thingalso seeing the same with solar cells. solar cells can scale up and scale they can scale down to this little strip on my watch that the electricity to run it. and they can go all the way up megawatts, 200 megawatts. there's really no limit to the size. close to 100 of these large plants being built now in the southwestern united states. at the end of last year, the world had 139,000 megawatts of solar-generating capacity. nuclearqual to 139 power plants. but it's growing by an extraordinary rate. 30% and 70% per year. of the most exciting things
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happening now is actually an economic development where rooftop solar panels generating electricity are now producing nottricity cheap enough to only compete with but to undercut the local utility. thishat happens in situation is, as more and more rooftopearn that a installation of solar panels cheaper electricity than the utility, they begin installing them on their homes. utility, the market begins to shrink. so they have to raise their prices. and when they raise their putes, even more people solar collectors on their roofs. suicide called a spiral. but there are many utilities now in this country, and elsewhere world, particularly in germany, where they've invested in solar cells, the
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germanyest utilities in are really on their knees. market value for the two of them has dropped 56% over four years, which says something about the market's assessment of utility-generated -- mostly coal generated -- electricity. so the markets are beginning to pick up these changes. denmark's3% of electricity came from wind. iowa and south dakota, it was 25%. on wind.pushing hard fall, a block of nine
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mid-western states got 20% of their electricity from wind. of oklahoma, in october, got 32% of its wind.icity from i'm getting these examples and so we canpses just begin to see what's happening. china's seven wind complexes. i mean, this is bend generation generation on a scale we've never seen before, when 10,000-megawatt plants at a minimum and some 38,000 megawatts. there are four states in north of theirhat get half electricity from solar cells. exciting thing
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about having a rooftop solar generator is that you cannot only run your household, you can your car, with solar energy. to need an electric car or a plug-in hybrid, but they're coming. also is going to be market-driven and it's going to move much faster than people simple reason that the cost of electricity as one-third that of gasoline. and that's going to become the more andk, more people in the years ahead -- clear to more and more people in the years immediately ahead. have seen an interest for several years now in using corn ethanol. i'm not sure that's the best use of land. if you have an acre of land growing corn, you can produce
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$1,000 worth of ethanol. but if you put a wind farm on land, it will generate $300,000 of electricity. so we can begin to see where the thence of -- where advantage lies as we look ahead. i mentioned iowa. one sort of wild thing about reflects the extraordinary piece of agricultural real estate we have u.s. midwest, iowa canada. more grain than and at the same time, more soybeans than china. that's a double wow. u.s. midwestean, is why the u.s. is the food world.wer in the there's no other country close to us in terms of production and exports and part of this is the good fortune of having inherited productiverdinarily
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soils. what about nuclear power? minutes to go. what about nuclear power? competecannot economically. the technology is there. with eknow how to do it -- we the costsaud it to do it, but are just not there. technology.the it's the economics that has led to the decline in both u.s. generation and worldwide nuclear generation. both are on the way down. is on the way out. i don't see anything reversing that. number of things contributing to this transition. advancing technologies have lowered the costs of solar and wind energy. is mounting public concern about climate change that sort of underlies the
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and the shaping of policies in this area. people withen some money, a lot of billionaires, money inton to plow renewable energy. warren buffet. billion a couple years ago. more recently, another $15 billion going into wind and solar development. ted turner, five solar plants in the south now and a wind farm coming in minnesota. anschutz, a denver-based guy who made his first billions and gas, is billing a farm ingawatt wind wyoming, and a transition line he can ship that wyoming wind energy to california basically of electricity. we're beginning to see all sorts of new developments now. to my final minute. strandeding some
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assets along the way of this transition. coal mines not worth anything anymore. the french firm, a big energy billion. $ $11 they just pulled out and wrote the whole thing off. fewer and fewer now. the corner service station, as gasoline use in the u.s. declines because of more efficient cars and we're driving less. my corner service station just went two weeks ago. now.gone and this is happening in many parts of the world. gasolinee stations, service stations, will be an important part of the stranded assets. oil refineries, a lot of them, not enough demand for oil to keep them going. so a lot of those are also going
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going. final point. and shellxxon mobil invested $120 billion last year oilrying to expand production. with that $120 billion investment, they only succeeded preventing further decline. they were not able to increase it at all. the stock market is not looking at the oil companies. the s&p 500 index went up 40% last year. sorry. the last three years. mobile and chevron went up 11%. shell went down 2%. when i see the oil ceo's now, they don't quite know where to go. entirely new world. instead of the companies expanding, they're actually shrinking. it's an indication of the kind of thing that we're going to be seeing in the years immediately ahead, and i'm not talking about from
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i'm talking about the rest of this year and next year. transition -- i call it the great transition because it's going from fossil fuels to and wind energy -- will be the defining element of our time. this is a historic development. thank you very much. [applause] most important developments in modern human history. to introduce mike phillips. of the gentlemen who pulse on keeping his conversation.ty and mike comes to us from the turner endangered species fund. i'm really looking forward to your presentation. thank you, mike.
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>> right here. good. good morning. i'm going to dive right in, minutes is not a lot of time. i caught my first gray wolf 34 ago. not long after that -- that's not supposed to be the first slide. that is. there you go. okay. not long after that, i had the fortune to lead a red wolf to the southeastern united states. this little female, known as the first red wolf born in the wild in many decades. had the good fortune in the effort to restore wolves to yellowstone national park. after that, i had the good to saddle up with ted turner and his family to launch what has become the largest private effort in the world to redress the extinction crisis. say that -- well,
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i've been involved with the crisis since 1980. i wish i could say that i didn't today becauseay to the work was done, but that's not the case, unfortunately, heard of whipples, narrow cat's paw, tennessee diving beetle, pig yellow-faced bee, true toe? all of those are species that the recentxtinct in past in the united states. have you ever heard of martha? that's martha. martha was a passenger pigeon. she died at the cincinnati zoo on september 1, 1914, at the ripe old age of 29. was not an extraordinary passenger pigeon. she just happened to be the last.
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passenger pigeons were fan gregarious creatures. consequently, they were very kill.o fast.cline happened in the early part of the 1880's, flocks, including millions of birds were known. before the end of that decade, groups of 200 were noteworthy. by aast wild bird was shot 14-year-old boy in ohio on march 24, 1900. the species was only known in captivity. and martha was the last of that crowd. upon her death, martha's small in a block ofn ice and shipped to the smithsonian. it?ic, isn't billions of passenger pigeons have been killed with no
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to their biology or their ecology.r but upon her death, martha's body was seen as precious, in accord with the scarcity theory of value. extinction crises, the one that we're currently in operates across a massive scale. every year, thousands of species and attendant interactions fine-tuned by time and place disappear at the hand of man, thees so severe that redundancy is being stripped away, exhausting the lives of millions. without doubt, the current extinction crisis is one of humanity's most pressing problems. and on par, on par, with the five great waves of extinction that have swept across this planet since multicellular life
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arose a billion years ago. the first extinction crisis era about 440 million years ago. that event emptied the oceans. fifth crisis occurred during 66 million years ago. during that crisis dinosaurs geologiced in a instant as an asteroid measuring slammedx miles across into the earth, traveling at 45,000 miles per hour. the sixth great extinction crisis began in the latter part onset oftury at th the age of man. waves ofof these extinction, ours is characterized -- if you want to extinction crisis, it's characterized by untold disappearingecies
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around the world. these aren't isolated events. exceedse that greatly the normal geological rhythms of life and death. extinction crisis, all bets are off. darwinian-based rules of survival of the fittest, those rules become irrelevant. change is brought about by these waves of destruction, so that theso complete very notion of darwinian fitness is rendered moot. species that survive -- this is adaptedt -- are not so as simply lucky. the power of a destructive force that is so overwhelming that survival of the fittest, that tried and true approach for life marching inexorably in the direction of persistence is rendered totally irrelevant. imagine forces so powerful that of living nature, the
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whole of living nature, with the ages, hasthe insufficient time, resources and to adapt. what then are we to make of the sixth great crisis before us? it's most important to note that it's not a speeding asteroid rather, it is us marching inexorably in this direction in onest powerful way to do thing. to domesticate the planet. driving thiss crisis as we speak today. do withs this have to renewable energy? well, i think the extinction crisis, above all else, is a changing ourfor relationship with one another and the planet earth. this so? why is the extinction crisis is clarion call? because it's loud and it's clear, as all clarion calls must be. for thosely allowed who are willing to listen.
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each imagine that with passing, there's a celestial bell that rings endlessly in the heavens, marking the passage of yet another miracle. and it's certainly clear. provides clear evidence, unequivocal evidence, that is be mindful over the long sweep, a billion years, of life, there have been five events that rival the that we're insis today. if that's not evidence that something is amiss, then i don't know what amiss means. we understand the cause of the crisis.on it's human-induced habitat loss,ation, habitat habitat modification, invasive species, and other the last few decades, climate change. so you wonder, what does this have to do with energy and policy and renewable energy? well, if we can mainstream renewables as a way for the extinction --
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redressing the climate change double as awill redress for the extinction crisis as well. shouldnsition that we consider should align us with the great thoughts of the ecotheologian, thomas barry, who imagined a transition from a human devastation of the earth to a period when humans would relate in a more beneficial manner. we need a transition to a heavy aliance on renewables, restorativeo a economy. fairness transition to within and between generations, peace amongsto ourselves and all other creatures, great and small. the growing momentum of the extinction crisis makes clear we're running out of the time. soon we won't have anything to to.sition without immediate and substantive changes, we are not
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going to have a world that we're give to our children and grandchildren and great-grandchildren. a step in the direction of be toary change would redouble our support for the federal endangered species act. tos would be a direct way respond to the extinction crisis. increasingly, it seems that the isangered species act incapable of doing anymore than simply buying us a bit of time the permanent losses are registered. what do you do on behalf of the endangered species act? your luckythank stars that you live in a country where votes matter. then i would ask that you redouble your involvement in electoral politics. elect officials who are willing to remedy environment degradation, remedy misguided fossil fuel energy policies that favor a few at the cost of many. by degraded condition of our
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earth screams out that we redouble our efforts. we must be part of a movement a stop to politicians' disregard for science on matters of great importance, like biodiversity, energy policy and human welfare in general. probably doand you too, that we're imagining a thisve mission to effect great transition. massive missions always require mastery of politics. there is simply no other way to resources. requisite we could more fully master politics, we could more fully a certain transition if ine of us showed up to serve elected office. now, you may agree that the world is run by those who show but you're not the least bit inclined to show up to serve in the irrational world of politics. well, you know, i found that politics is not all that
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irrational. served as a montana representative. by a bunchd defined of knuckleheads, but they're not irrational. [laughter] importantly, i have come to believe that at its core, our political system favors folks like us. it favors people that believe facts and knowledge and scholarship and determination matter. i believe this in this age of hyperpartisanship? in.use of the way our country was founded. during the formative years, from 1788, the founders recognized that there was no way on the heels of the hard-fought revolutionary war to establish a republic that resolved the rightss related to the of the federal government versus the rights of state governments. resolve the way to problems related to the rights of women, the rights of native americans, the rights of slaves. at the time of our nation's
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problems weree insolvable. so our founders created a political system, and political parties, as institutionalized for ongoing debate, which permitted dissent to be not as a treesson act but as a legitimate voice in an endless argument. ae constitution provides framework for debating salient endlessly, if need be. we will not succeed in ending the extinction crisis, in making renewable energy a foundation of a new energy future. not succeed in any efforts to make the world a more prosperous or just place, for all creatures, great small, unless we more fully master politics.
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winning more debates, by elections.e of1990, following 27 years imprisonment, nelson mandela ended11 words that apartheid. he said, we can't win a war but we can win an election. he became south africa's first black president with that ended the policy of apartheid. similarly, we can win more elections. and which winning enough elections, we can ensure the the wondrousof earth.ty of life on and that is, of course, a critically important part of the great transition before us. thank you very much. [applause]
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>> more now from the american renewable energy summit with a group of scientists discussing climate change and the of category 4ber hurricanes. from aspen, colorado, this is 45 minutes. >> good morning. hope you're ready for some climate science, and i know because those were two great presentations, and we're happy to follow that. you're awake,that because i'm going to put you to work. instead of just listening and instead of me asking questions of the panelists, at the end of want yousentations, i to do the asking. i want you to be thinking of questions during their presentations. so please write those down and be ready to engage in end of then at the presentations. so my name is cindy schmidt. i'm with the university
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corporation for atmospheric research. the united nations foundation. and those are two institutions that are funding my project, would like to plug, because i think it could be a good resource for all of you. voices.led climate it's -- the website is network of scientists across the country, in all 50 to theirhat are going local communities and are willing to talk to any group those local communities about climate science, about thosee change, in communities, and about what can be done in the community. and these scientists are ready to involve with their fellow citizens there. so please go to and take a developing and growing project. this morning i am slighted to be here -- delighted to be here with three distinguished scientists. climatelking about science and the current state of knowledge of climate science.
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it's notu all know, just the atmosphere that we're worried about. of jigsawreal sort puzzle of land, water, atmosphere, and two of our presenters this morning are ofng to address the state knowledge of that science. and then our final presenter talk about a possible solution that addresses all of those, land, water, and atmosphere. that.ll get started on greg holland is going to be our first speaker. at thesenior scientist national center for atmospheric research in boulder. career is inmic tropical meteorology with a and climatether extremes and the relationship between the two. you'll hear from his accent that is not from brooklyn. susan avery is going to be our second speaker. she is president and director of
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the woods hole oceanographic institute. lucky enough to have her on two panels. she was on one yesterday. some of you may have heard her then. the woods hole oceanographic institute is affectionately and susan used to work at the colorado. of and then also at the institute for research and environmental directed inch she boulder. and those of us in boulder who sorry with her were very when woods hole oceanographic institute stole her. is going to be our final speaker. he's the chief scientist for nasa langley research center where he is responsible for thesight programs for formulation for several technological areas. dennis holds several patents and has contributed much work on the area of biofuels and biomass as which he'llplaces, be addressing today. please remember to think of those questions.
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greg.start off with >> cindy, can i have the slide? someone was supposed to get me a clicker. we have the clicker? >> i'll just tell you to go to the next one. that's easy. the title up there. >> oh, that's the clicker! >> cindy is sitting on it. [laughter] part of myt it was chair. i just stole the clipper. ha ha! see the title up the back there. i don't think i'm going to be cindy'squite live up to expectations, because i don't think i can give you a summary of the state of the science in five, ten minutes. is what i would like to do make three points. those three points are, firstly, change?ually is climate and the second point is, how are weather and -- extreme weather and climate systems responding to that climate change? because at the end of the day, it's the extremes that really
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matter. how can we actually work with society at large, and how does working with society at large help both -- not fix but let us adjust to them and become more resilient to those changes but also to scientistst the understand how they can do their job better? to start with the first one, is climate change, if you look at most newspapers and see thiske that, you lovely curve that goes up at a until aboutr basis, now, then it starts to go off like this. and that's only partly true, theuse if you look at carbon dioxide in the air, the main greenhouse gas that is changing due to us, it's going up like that. go upe warming did not like that, because up till about putting in we were another gas and aerosol into the
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air, and that was called sulfates. you can remember the acid rain and all the major ecological problems. we cleaned that up. what had happened before then was those sulfates were a net cooler and you have a net warmer and a net cooler, and they were largely cancelling each other out. so the warming that we're actually seeing is because we smokestacks.e smok it's not accelerated quite rapidly up at a much deeper see in the simple linear curves. when i talk about climate change, that's what i'm actually about.g extremes, there beinglot of problems with able to predict what happens to extremes. for one simple reason. they don't happen very often. and so there's a big noise level. hard to get a statistical signal. but there are fundamentals that you just can't get away from, is, if you make any changes to the overall
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distribution, the means and the way the distribution looks, the biggest change is always at the extreme. that the changes are not going to be big, we just need to be able to identify them them down better. and there's another story to this as well, because those extremes actually have other limitations other than climate change. the most extreme thing that can happen is usually happening because it basically used up all the energy there is. you can drive your car, maybe maybe 600 miles, but at about 700 miles, you ain't it anymore unless you put more fuel in it, because you've used up all the energy. atmosphere works like that. if we look at hurricanes to is what hasthis happened with hurricanes. the bottom curve, bottom axis is number of categories where category 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 i'm sure aware 0 is tropical storms sm.
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up on the other curve is relative to all hurricanes. focus on the little area on your right-hand side, back in the 60's and 70's when cleaned out the smoke stacks, we had a curve that came down like this. decade since then, it has actually bulged up. of ans been a bit increase out in the category 5 area, but the big differences category 4's. that's because the energy limit has changed a little bit but not fast. capacity to intensity has gone up very rapidly. this is all published information. it's not that we're going to have superhurricanes. that's the good news. news is we've now got twice as many going on to two and a half times as many 4 and 5 hurricanes as we had before. it happens globally. that's the global result. it also happens to have happened in every ocean base except the pacific. so that's something we're living
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with now. temperatures. as cindy said, i'm not from brooklyn. i'm from the south country down here. had a horrific january actually the hottest we've ever seen. there were several days in where the temperature exceeded 40 degrees celsius for whole country, not just one station. and there's a lot of talking about it and everything else. decided we'd go and have a look at it. it's actually interesting, temperaturesis the in this particular case on one day. the really high temperatures you see, greater than 42 celsius. you can see the cooler temperatures around the coast like that. where do you think the records set? well, we can do this two ways. going to show you another slide and say, what happens if i
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100% of green here? in other words, double the greenhouse for that situation? will happen?hink well, here's what happened. this is a change. as you can see, we've got around degrees celsius change. and let me -- i guess i can't go back. back.t go but if you remember the area that was there originally, all was up in the center of the country, all the changes down here. thank you. and that's because what's happened is that extreme temperatures haven't gone up. thethe temperatures near to extreme have gone up substantially in frequency, same as is happening with the hurricanes. and this is also an energetic limitation. it's really hard to get extremes higher. there's not enough greenhouse forming to do that. happen is've seen this. you see some unintended consequences here. north.little bit further it's actually maybe a little bit
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hotter, maybe a bit cooler. mostly nothing or a little bit cooler. in the southwest, it's just the particular particularity that month. peculiarity that month. but in the content as a total is warming up, the summer monsoon gets more intense and you're bringing more cold, tropical air,cold and wet tropical down into the northern region. these are the sorts of uncertainties you read about in the paper. and people say, well, look, you don't know anything. the answer is we can say about this.ngs that's my second message. my third message goes to how we actually interact with folks like you in a particular -- in particular, we're interacting with several groups. but i want to show you a slide. slide.a it's an old slide, deliberately so. you look at it. say, well, that was a pretty
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what do you think it was? well, here's the headline that goes with that slide. molasses blew up and took out the entire town. my point here is that if we what'sng to actually say happening with climate change, there is another element to the can'tand that is that we just be building buildings in a more rigid, more extreme, able to go another 100 years without falling over, because they will, and they will for a whole bunch reasons we don't understand. so we've been working with groups such as these. for climateing extremes partnership and rising voices. you heard about rising voices colleagues in the native american community yesterday. and what we're doing is we're just trying to get a dialogue going where we can actually say, hey, this is what's happening how weneed to work out
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can work with you. and i'm going to give you one theple, which goes back to picture above, that's come out of that, which really makes a big difference to how i do it's making a big difference to how people do planning as well. and that is the concept of graceful failure. we no longer are talking about hundred-year return periods for a building. we're still talking about it but entirely oncusing that. we're saying, what happens if the building falls down or the or the vat of molasses blows up? what you do is build the consequences and recovery there the planning process. so you say, if it happens, here is what we need to have as part planning process to make sure we can recover quickly. that's what i call resilience. becoming a bit of a buzzword now. i'm sure you'll start to hear a about it. but i want to go further since
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about alternative energy. i absolutely support alternative energies. go to renewables. let me start by saying that. but it is not a panacea. indeed, there is no doubt that took all of our current energy requirements and the requirements of india and china and the rest of the world, but they're the two gorillas on the block, and turned them all into alternative energies in the sense of wind and solar power, we will make permanent and unknown at this changes to the climate. it won't be necessarily global. it may be global. certainly be regional. a good example i gave you earlier on was, when we cleaned stacks, we did it for very good reasons. we then accelerated the warming, brings us to this meeting here. we just -- let's say simply took all of the energy for the united states and used
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wind farms to do it. you can't take that much energy out of the wind systems of the not make some changes. and it's not just going to happen no the united states. in the united states. it will make changes elsewhere. entire sahara desert green, grow trees, whatever we decide to do there, it will change the climate of the world. and it has. example, because the the nile sorry -- valley was once a very fertile region. indried up and that happened conjunction with the onset of the indian summer monsoons. cindy is giving me a wrap-up here. all i want to do is simply say hope you'llints i go away with. firstly, look carefully what you mean by climate change or what meant by climate change. extremes are going to happen, and in my view, have already happened and i showed you an
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example. and thirdly, let's keep the dialogue up in a two-way sense, because i think there really will be good things come out of it. thank you. [applause] you.ank thank you, greg. i think greg really sets the sharefor what i want to with you, and, again, i think -- startave the power to this? i guess you do. what i want to do is talk about the fact that this climate jigsaw puzzle that was alluded to, has more components than the atmosphere. there's the total focus on what's happening in the atmosphere, not realizing it's land,osphere, ocean, humanity process going on here. and so i want to talk about some intersections of these complex things. arctic,appening in the and the triple whammy of what's termsing in the ocean in ocean, acidicatiom.
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this whammy is affectionately and gaspingarming of the ocean. i'm showing this slide again because i showed it yesterday. several people wanted to see it once more. when you look at the planet from see all of this water and think, oh, it's not going to do anything. it's not going to change. need to worry about it. but in wre al ti, as -- reality, of this waterll off the planet, the amount of water that you have, that really our planetaryt of system, is quite small compared to the volume of the planet itself. fresh water you have is that second dot there drained off of the larger blue. and then the smaller dot is the available fresh water. so since the next panel is really talking about fresh thought i would show this again to really give you a
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perspective of how precious this ocean is and the water that we have on this particular planet. it is a critical component of the climate system, because the ocean is the fly wheel of the climate system. it's the memory of the climate system. it basically holds so much of capacity of heat. and in fact i'm going to show you a slide later on here that heat, the most of the excess heat that has gone into of atmosphere as a result carbon dioxide is being taken up by the ocean. let's start first with sea level rise. i want to focus our attention on antarctic ice sheets. this is some of the latest science coming through, what is antarctica in terms of the melting ice sheets. this is an animation i want to show. it goes quickly. it was produced by nasa and an itis mostly covered by ice.
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it's actually speeding up. what i'm going to show you here is this animation of that process of a flow coming in and the flow coming out. it's color-coded. color-codedin this kor fasteron basically means glacier flows that are happening. antarctica.western you see the inlets there and then the outlets of the glaciers. they are basically rivers of ice. what's happening here is that warmer water that's happening in the antarctic is coming underneath the ice shoals that you see here. as it comes under this ice, it puts up and reroads the eroadsng points of -- it
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the glacier. eroads this, the grounding point moves landward. and that unstabilizes. it's not as secure. the glacier begins to fall and surge forward and out into the ocean. the process of this complex interaction between a warming ocean and its ice that is basically cascading and ice into theutting water and eventually melting the ice. amount of sea level attributed to melting of the western an tire antarctic. so what does that mean? ten feet of sea level rise? let's put it into the context of new york. this is new york city with ten feet of sea level rise. i think the first thing you can
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see, that you complete the inundated three metropolitan airports. okay? of sea lega level rise 100 years orver so. but in the short term, ten feet inundated new york has happened and already has happened. sandy.ened with sandy is a combination of the small amounts of sea level rise combinedave already, with a storm at a relatively high tide period that gave you two and a half foot storm surges that inundated manhattan. can happen, this intersection of what's happening toa longer term time scale our climate system along with these extreme events that one is of weathererms patterns. surgeseasily produce like this that we're going to see in the short term. the point is, not only are we going to need to worry about mitigating and clearly climate
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offnce is telling us get fossil fuel as much as possible, adaptations also an strategy in terms of the engineering of our cities and infrastructure that we have here. adaptation strategies, you can retreat. can we retreat new york? i don't know where it's going to go. maybe to colorado. ha! we can accommodate. we can raise these cities. the 1800's, we raised chicago and seattle. lot easier toas a do in those days than it is today. or you can protect. of debate on, how do you protect? harderprotect with infrastructure, building walls and seawalls, or do you protect with putting our self-defenses back into place, no longer building on barrier islands, and restoring our mangroves, restoring wetlands. there's a lot of discussion on in coastal communities about exactly how they're going
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to approach this problem, of a combination of both soft well ases to adapt as hardened strategies. theet me go to the arctic, loss of sea ice is certainly a sentimental feature of climate the arctic. you've seen this graph before. point is, it's not just the sea ice area that's important. the volume of the sea ice. and increasingly, what we're seeing. much, much less ice,lived ice, age-old four to five-year-old ice, and almost all the ice is becoming ice, which melts rather quickly. there's an uptick in 2013, but an anomaly, you see a lot of wiggles there. our point is that it may have increased the area of ice for that year 2013 but it is still one-year ice. now, arctic ice has an
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well, let me stop a minute. this is basically a tipping tont with respect issues.ical what does it mean in opening up the arctic. opening up the arctic certainly has a lot of economic potential, has an economic potential in terms of fisheries, in terms of lanes, in terms of oil and gas and other extraction. you know companies are looking at this. i think one of the greatest an oceanography point when, not if an oil spill is going to open, it is when an oil spill is going to the arctic. and it's not going to come from probably drilling for gas and oil. to come from shipping. if you look at what the response was for deep water horizon and getting down there and trying to clean up an oil spill in an area which is basically mother nature's pretty kind basically,
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of ways to help clean up that oil spill, compared to what is going to happen to a pristine area that we know little about scientifically, physical ability, easy physical ability to get there, in an easy way, and how clean it up. so there's some real important sort of adaptation strategies or through about the security of what's going to happen in the arctic as this becomes an ice-free area. there's the geopolitical consequences, and economic values that they have. interestingly enough, the u.s.ary lines between the wellussia have been established as a result of the cold war. but it's the other nations that are still arguing what's going on here. >> finally, i'm going to skip this. i'm just going to go to the triple whammy. as carbon dioxide
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increases, that carbon as carbon monoxide increases and part of it is dissolved in the ocean that means the ph decreases and you have certainly a major habitat consequence associated with that. this is the whole process. there is a lot of research looking at the biological functioning and relationship between ph conditions and ealthy ecosystems. clearly, one of the problem areas is the habitat loss of the coral reef systems and production of mollusks and ability to function. that is the acid issue. the warming issue. the ocean is warming. okay? most of that heat content is in the ocean. this just shows you the fact that the ocean, the heating we have from the carbon monoxide is ending up most in the ocean. if we didn't have an ocean it would be a lot of a heck more atmospheric heating right now.
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buffing us right now. the growing oxygen minimum zones in the ocean, my last slide, first this is the surface of the ocean absorbing more heat, warming up. you aren't getting as much oxygen down into the deeper parts of the ocean which is pretty critical because that different part of the ocean is disassociated with the atmosphere in that deeper part. the only way the lower levels of the ocean are going to get oxygen is through the mixing process. warmer water inhibits that mixing process. you are basically enhancing the ocean minimum zones in the deep ocean and they're going to
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spread. that has tremendous implications for marine animals that require oxygen such as the tony:. okay? the tony: requires oxygen. they live in the deeper parts of the ocean. without oxygen they're going to run into some trouble here. it does, though, provide a wonderful habitat for jelly fish. if you want to have jelly fish we may have lots of jelly fish because they thrive. this accounts for what we're having on coast with the nurent ading from atmosphere -- basically run off, your pharmaceuticals, whatever, in the coastal regions, it causes the plankton to bloom and pull the oxygen out of the coastal waters there. as you have these minimum zones increasing in the deep ocean coming up into areas of coastal areas where you already have additional stresses associated with neernt loading you enhance
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the dead zones in the ocean increasing and we are seeing this as well. so you are this complex feedback system in the complexity of an ocean-land atmosphere system of which science is becoming -- really beginning to come to grips with. we are at a stage where i think it is really important to make that investment in r&d that really looks and studies these complexities. this gives us the information to adapt to a changing world. applause] >> thanks for that overview and statement of some of the problems. now dennis with address some of those with possible solutions. >> if i could have the charts please. folks yesterday said we have to do something very different and what you're going to see is very different. grown the salt plant,
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on waste lands, deserts, using sea water irrigation to solve land, water, food, energy, and climate afford bli and soon. all of it. there are two types of plants. fresh water plants and then halophyte, salt water plants used for food and fodder in india and other countries for hundreds of years. a goodly portion of the sahara is capable if we plowed it up and irrigated with the mediterranean and grew halophytes with direct sea water irrigation of producing sufficient biomass to replace all of the carbon fuels, provide petro chemical feedstock and all the food anybody wants to eat while returning much of the 68% of the fresh water we're now running out of for direct human use. i.e. solves land, water because we're substituting salt water to grow food, solves food
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because we're growing food. solves energy because we're producing biomass and biofuels at about $50 a barrel. the climate because we're sequestering some 18% of the co2. so conventional wisdom for but lture -- salt is bad with this salt is good. 97% of the sea water -- of the water is sea water. we won't run out of it. it contains a massive number of miep he recalls needed in the human diet which we've just about depleted out of the land. 80% of nutrients required for agriculture in proximity to a large number of desert and dry areas. 40% of the land worldwide is waste land, has a lot of sun light and barackish/saline ground water. you don't have to pump ocean
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water. you can pump saline ground water. in the sahara there is one that is absolutely huge. we can utilize these to solve our problems. the characteristics of this wasteland, halophyte sea water, no asoshable salt buildup, produces a cooler surface, produces fresh water, rain downwind. in the sahara, you could put rain back in the middle east and regrow the cedars of lebanon and stop the decertification of the sub sahara. we have a plethora of wastelands and sea water to solve what we have now. there's about 10,000 metro halophytes and 25% of the irrigated lands now perfected because the aquifers we're now pumping including the one down in texas and oklahoma are in fact becoming saline.
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the characteristics, the yields this and it to produces the entire spectrum, seeds, fruits, roots, tubers, grains, foliage, wood, oils, berries, gums, resins, pulp, ich in energy, salt penalty, 35% saline water already grows this stuff. use it for food, fodder, biomass, energy, petro chemical, feed stock, wood, co2 secretion and wildlife habitat. for centuries there's been a uccessful saline brakish water agriculture with no buildup and nations are now growing halophytes for food and fodder. wastelands are a massive possibility to do this. western australia, persian gulf, middle east, sahara, southwest u.s. including west
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texas, and the anaconda in south america and many others. the current efforts in the u.a.e., boeing is growing halophytes for airplane fuel. i worked with the state department. there is an operation down there -- farms in northern mexico are growing fuel. there are several others that are in the formative stages. so utilize the opportunity -- the opportunity is utilizing wastelands and deserts, inexpensive land. utilize sea water which is extremely pottable and inexpensive. grow halophytes, massive amounts of food and biomass for petro chemical food stock and green fuels while sequestering about 18% of the co2 afford bli with existing technology. start now. 10 to 20 years up you fix land, water, food, energy, and
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climate. thank you. [ applause] >> thank you, dennis. thanks to all three of you for those great presentations. do we have questions? yes, john? >> the presumption which i think we all share is that climate change is real. my question is about plication of your science to reality, being that we have a gubernatorial election coming up in which one candidate says that climate change is the biggest hoax ever perpetrated and the other who claims to be a scientist saying the science is unclear. so my question to you all is what can you do to affect the leadership in this state and what can we do to help you? because our governor claims to be a scientist and claims that there is no significant proof of aspergenic caused climate
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change. it's just crazy. i know your objectivity keeps you in a certain rem of being scientific but there is too much at stake. we need advocacy and we need to support that advocacy. [ applause] >> i'll start off. you heard yesterday that the climate change politics is driven largely by the financial aspects in the real world. and recently the renewables are punching through a parody and so the financial business is in fact becoming very successful. half of the new generation worldwide is now renewables and one of the previous speakers this morning went into this. okay? so it's actually not the concern about climate i think, which is going to change things the way some of us would like to see it go. i think it's the favorable financial aspects which are
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just about here. >> you talked a little bit about other countries being involved with halophyte development. do you see that in the u.s.? do you see some attention to that now in the u.s.? >> yeah. halophytes in the u.s. were actually started out of university of arizona. there is a major effort in the university of delaware. d.o.e. down in oak ridge has some halophyte work. we are, you know, becoming far more successful with this. the entrepreneur that actually started the major sea water farms operation in the horn of africa and is working now with united arab emirates came out of arizona. >> greg, you wanted to address john's question? >> yes. very quickly, i spent many years working diligently with
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politicians and i woke up after a while i was getting nowhere. it's not because they're idiots. they're actually very smart people. they have an agenda and it's driven by two things. it's driven by the people in this room and they're also driven by who gives them the money to get elected. you have to simply understand that. you can do all of the logical o arguments you like. ou are running up against that political reality. a few years ago we started not to do that. that is where for example the rising voices and engineering for climate extremes came out of. let me give you two examples of where that is now affecting the political process. first, the last rising voices meeting, americans wrote directly into the presidential system saying, here is what has to happen. it's no longer me talking about it but all the indians in america and hawaiians in hawaii doing that. that's what they listen to. the second thing is that the
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financial industry gets a bad rap as we saw in many cases but the insurance and the financial industry again working with people like us have actually come to a united nations agreement. we're starting next year. every company in the u.s. and other parts of the world that have shareholders, in other words publicly listed, has to put in their sensitivity and their problems that they may have with climate change and severe weather and similar things that come out of it. the world is moving in that direction not because the politicians are taking us that way. because the people that elect the politicians are taking us that way. >> and let me just add to the conversation a little bit about voices. i mean, scientists are a small percentage of the population. it's your voices that have to come through. let me just tell you a little bit about massachusetts. maybe you can actually concretely look, tell your
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gubernatorial people, look what's happening in massachusetts. so in massachusetts, there has been a very concerted effort to put in place an agenda for a green economy, green and blue economy. the governor has done it. the state legislature has done it. there are resources that have been put into investments that have been done. we are beginning to see results already in terms of economic development. this is where you have to -- you have to talk about it in terms of financial terms. you have to talk about it in terms of human terms. you don't talk about it in terms of science terms. there are things happening here in colorado that shows the climate is changing. regardless of what you, if you believe in it or not the climate is changing. we have to get away from this business of basically just talking at the scientific level and instead casting it in terms of economic development, human stories, and basically what's
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happened to the environment as a whole. massachusetts has had success years in a period of five years. take a look. go on the website. alk to people there. >> a question from mr. bushnell. halophytes sound too good to be true. many of the middle eastern countries that struggle with food have lots of money. why does the list not show saudi arabia for example? it sounds too good to be true. convince me that it's not. >> i have worked with the saudis. the saudis called me up and said they're worried after they run out of oil what's their economy going to be? i worked with the people in the province of alberta for the same reason and i asked whether they had any sand. i asked whether they had sea water. they had sea water.
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i said, have i got a deal for you. the last time i saw the saudis were going down the street looking into halophytes. the middle east was on my chart. that's one of the major areas. again, for energy. > one more question. >> my name is steven hoffman. i'm really honored to be here. i live in boulder. i work in natural and organic foods and i'm working on the colorado ballot initiative to label g.m.a. foods in our state. i was very curious when you brought up the dead zone because it's actually caused by agriculture driven by genetic engineering and is all the synthetic nitrate fertilizer that just poisons the water of toledo, ohio. call that a dead zone too because it's an algae bloom. it's caused by g.m.o. agriculture. we think g.m.o. agriculture and
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conventional agriculture in general contributes 30% of the greenhouse gases to global warming. interestingly enough and i'm very interested in your halophyte conversation because according to rode al institute organic food and farming puts so much carbon back into healthy living organic soils that it can actually sequester more carbon than is being released in our atmosphere. so there actually are open source low cost solutions to sequestering carbon and it has to do with agriculture. agriculture as we practice it today which is why we want to label g.m.o.'s is because that agriculture has killed the soils releasing all the carbon and is atmosphere really contributing to climate change. thank you very much.
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>> a lot of the issues that are going on internationally, i wanted to ask about as scientists that you are, what is your thoughts on fukushima and how come the government doesn't tell the truth? i'm talking even about the u.n., the effects of what's going on with fukushima, what's going on in the pacific ocean, the deaths occurring. why doesn't that knowledge ever come out to the main stream public how it's affecting us now? how it's affecting global warming. >> anybody want to take that? it's a little more out out -- >> i'll talk about fukushima only in the context of the radio act ive release into the ocean. that's associated with it. if you really want some good,
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concrete information very straight forward, evidence based information, go to our website and look at the center for marine and radioactive activity just published. we have a scientist who immediately when the tsunami hit and the meltdown in fukushima happened realized this was probably the largest ccidental release of radioactive -- into the ocean. we worked very hard and it wasn't through the government or anything we got funding to get into japanese waters and off japan waters to be tracing this and basically who came to the rescue for that funding was a private foundation, betty gordon moore foundation. one of the first things you have to do in scientific evidence and what's happening in some of these crises is get the baseline data. that enabled to get the baseline data and also establish relationships between japan and international scientists to pull together in a cooperative way to continue to trace what's happening with
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the fukushima ocean radioactivity. also these scientists have worked very hard in getting information out to the japanese public. there was a workshop and public forum. the japanese came in droves and thanked the scientists for getting the unbiased, solid information out there. we worked very creatively through crowd sourcing to get, again, samples of water along the west coast and that has come in to be analyzed and shows that the level of threat s very, very low, well below a safety standard. we have a whole center devoted to it. >> i want to thank all of you
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for your interest this morning in this panel and please thank me in -- join me in thanking these distinguished scientists for their time. [ applause] >> our coverage of this year's american renewable >> our coverage continues with american enterprise institute scientist bob irvin. one drops, i had the foundation. before i get to introduce the great work of peter and bob i just wanted to tell you a little bit about what we do. we were created in 2007 by the founder and everybody is asking why would cirque du soleil pay so much attention to water that it would create a foundation? so much attention to water that it would create a foundation? the first connection is evidently our founder, who started basically from nothing, toured the world, started his career as a flame thrower, saw a lot of poverty worldwide, and
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wanted to have a major impact to alleviate poverty. he did a lot of research and soul searching to figure out where he would have the most impact and he realized quickly it was going to be through water. cirque du soleil also performs in countries all around the world where some of them have serious water issues. obviously our biggest permanent operations are in las vegas right in the middle of the desert as well. so it's no coincidence i think that one drop was created. i also think that when we created one drop, basically cirque du soleil reinvented in the way of the circus arts and they thought there was room for perhaps a creative n.g.o. in a sector that would also inspire change rather than impose change. and i could talk to you and i will in a few minutes a little bit more about what we do. i thought i would show a little video that shows what we've done in the first six months of this year. it shows you a little bit about our business model and how we
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go on about our business. so cue the video. thank you. >> a partnership with water for people and delivering a program n an integrated way. ♪ ♪
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>> the united nations has laid important groundwork. i would want to also recognize water aid, the global poverty project. the one drop foundation and many more.
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>> there you see one drop is basically an organization that delivers very unique water management programs on three continents but more than just providing access to water and sanitation, i mean the greatest issue that our sector faces certainly is sustainability. there is anywhere between 30 and 75% of all the water and sanitation programs that are delivered worldwide that will fail within two years of being
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implemented. so quickly we wanted to come up with a model to help overcome the sustainability challenge. not only do we provide access to water and sanitation but we also provide behavior change using the arts, culture, entertainments. that allows us to speak to communities from, people who are literate to illiterate the young and the old and address an entire community all at once. it is very similar to the work you are doing here. it will be an interesting connection to make later. the third component of what we deliver is the sea is a capital. we basically transformed water into revenue generating activities so after five or six years of implementation the community has enough resources and wealth and ownership of the infrastructure to maintain it forever. now the reason why we're here today is certainly because it's hard to talk about water and or talk about energy without talking about water.
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decisions made in one sector definitely impact the other. they are intrinsically linked together. someone who actually saw, you know, and we talk, we've talked yesterday and we talked today and we will in the next few days talk about the energy crisis and the fact that in a little more than a hundred years we'll run out of oil, 200 years we're going to run out of gas. the fact is we're running out of water right now. i think someone who has seen it first hand because it happened in his back yard is peter mcbride who is an amazing award winning film maker, photographer, water expert. so, peter, we have about 30 minutes, a little less now to leave the audience with a powerful message about what's actually happening. do you want to share some of your thoughts? >> thanks. thanks for your work. thanks for coming out. just to give you a little background on what i do, i've worked -- i started as a photographer doing work mostly
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for "national geographic." i've had the privilege to travel over 70 countries. i started off doing adventures going to the far flung corners of the planet. after a little while i wanted to do a story a little closer to home. about five years ago i followed what i call my back yard river. i grew up here in the valley and the colorado river starts in the rocky mountains here and flows all the way to the sea of cortez. it used to. it ran there for 6 million years. i followed that river about three times and was amazed four years ago when i came to the u.s.-mexican border just south of it and saw the colorado river go completely dry. that just perplexed me beyond my comprehension. colorado river ran to the sea for 6 million years. not a single drop of it reached the sea since 1998. it's been drying up since the 1960's basically. i think what is so significant about that is that rivers really embody so much of fresh
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water as a whole. it supports us in recreation, agriculture, industry, and basically maybe our well being. i started following rivers all over. i've now done about i think five source to sea rivers. i just completed a source to sea from 18,000 feet in the himalaya and followed the sacred river the ganges all the way to the sea. the ganges river supports water for 400 million people in india. arguably one of the most contaminated rivers in the world. believed to be by 1 billion hindus sacred and embodyment of a god and goddess. what is so remarkable to me is not only a river on the other side of the world that is loved and hugged daily by so many people, embraced, you know, face on and getting terribly over used and abused, revered and reviled as many like to
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say, yet at the same time, in my back yard, in a river that is famous in the world, worldwide for the grand canyon, so many of us turn our backs to it in part because we just think water is going to keep flowing. our taps are going to keep running. the reality is they're not. it's an issue everywhere. whether you're impoverished in india or whether you live in aspen, colorado, or anywhere in the southwest or even in the u.s. because every bit of lettuce comes commercially from the u.s. and our grocery stores comes from colorado river water. winter lettuce. baby spinach in january comes from the colorado river. and lake mead, one of the largest reservoirs on the colorado river built by hoover dam, 1935, has now reached the all-time record low, 39% full. so we have this mentality that water is, you know, as long as our taps flow, no big deal.
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we'll just keep turning the sprinklers on and keep doing business as usual. and we're basically just eroding, detonating our reservoirs, our bank account water. what amazes me is nobody is really paying that close attention. a lot of people banging the drum but it seems to be one of these issues that goes very heavily ignored and now wherever i go whether it's locally or abroad i'm seeing the issue everywhere. water, water, water. fresh water is just vanishing. what i was going to do is show you a two-minute little video i recently did because i want to make you aware that although we're in an extreme, i would call it approaching a very serious crisis on fresh water, particularly around rivers but ground water as well, it feels like what can we do? it's such a big challenge. how do i make a difference? sure i can turn my sprinklers down or use less but i think a
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lot of it is just i know it's used, the phrase is used a lot but awareness and being aware of what is happening and getting your voice out there. the video i'm about to show you is an example because the colorado river although it hasn't reached the ocean continuously for a long time did this spring. is video is about an eight-week experimental post flow that is mainly due because a lot of people were concerned and got together and the hands of many as the video will explain lifted the gates on the last dam and enabled the colorado river to actually kiss the sea of cortez this last may for the first time in a very long time. it was temporary, experimental. i was one of three people that took a paddle board the entire length of it to see it. so i know it a little more closely than i maybe wanted to. the angry mosquito down there iting for fools like us were
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extraordinary. cue the video and then we'll ove on to bob. >> you have to go over that. rgets like a trail. >> this is an improvement, i swear. > you're moving. >> this is called moving an inch an hour. >> a trickle of water is enough. trust me. >> what are we doing here? >> the last time i came here, i walked 90 miles across a dry, forgotten river channel. my back yard river, the colorado. i've been chasing its flow for years. most people think of it as that loved architect of the grand canyon, carrying the memory of
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the rocky mountains near my home in colorado. be you it is different down .ere at the end it's been sucked dry so we can eat baby spinach in january. but in the spring of 2014, something happened. two countries decided to work together to restore a delta. the hands of many lifted the gates on the morales dam and released a temporary pulse of water. less than 1% of the river's flow. mexico's allocated aqua into the delta to see what would happen. a river of sand became wet once again. and a fiesta ignited down the tream. locals celebrated the return of the rio.


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