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tv   Tech Know  Al Jazeera  April 7, 2015 4:00pm-4:31pm EDT

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and sources of information available to them. if you see something that doesn't look right to check it out, and if it happens to be incorrect you should correct it. >> thank you, so much beare out of time, until next time [ ♪ music ♪ ] this is "techknow". a show about innovations that can change lives. we're going to explore the humanity and we are doing it in a unique way. this is a show about science by scientists. tonight tech your vets climate change. -- investigates climate change. it's science versus politician. >> do you know what this is? it's a snowball. >> from a city in the crisis.
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>> neighbours were coming down. >> to the epicentre of a political debate. >> carbon pollution, co2, it's food. >> we go to the front lines of a debate that may not be decided. >> they'll raise the sidewalks. >> it's it feet until it's to late. >> as mayor, i don't have the liberty or time to declat meaning. lindsay moran is an ex-cia . >> why is the issue dr crystal dilworth is a molecular neuroscientist. >> why does the small segment of scientists i'm phil torres. 'm an entomologist. >> that was something else, a rush. that's the team. let's do some science. [ ♪♪ ]
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welcome to "techknow", it's a debate that somehow is still raging on - is the climate changing, is man to blame and is there anything we cabn do to stop the disaster. most agree the answers is yes. that's most scientists, not all of them. story. >> at the c.i.a. i was trained to analyse complex and sometimes contradictory data. climate change fits into that model as well. washington d.c. - politics are part of the equation. no matter what the science is, debates. >> i had a different experience. i was dealing with the scientists and citizens would are not debating if climate change is happening, but they are living it now. >> i think it's interesting that both sides of the debate is on the side of science, and use
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studies as ammunition. we wanted to know who is right. things got interesting. >> as scientists we are trained to look at the data and go from there. that's what we try to keep in mind as we delve into the debate - the politics of change. >> the picture esque sunrise on the strip of miami beach florida hides the danger facing the tourist island. >> florida is sort of an epicentre for climate impacts those are forcing a massive city-wide constructionest, turning miami beach into a real-life laboratory to deal with a climate changing all-too fast. florida is not alone, as "techknow" discovered. travelling around the world to talk to experts on the forefront of climate science. recently with n.a.s.a. - they measure the ice melts on glaciers, marking another year of decline.
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>> the climate of the arctic has been changing. we travel to peru, where rain forests are declining. >> in 2005 there was the biggest drought in the amazon, in the history of our records. 2010, five years later, a bigger drought hit the amazon. these are the climate projections playing out before our eyes. >> we saw a camp from the last eye age, to get a comparison on how quickly greenhouse gases are accumulating today. this sample represents 3,000 years of changing of carbon dioxide. >> the equivalent change of greenhouse gases that happened in the last decade took thousands of years to happen when the earth is not implemented these scientists respect the fact that 97% of all research published on climate change say it's fuelled by manmade
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greenhouse gas emissions. >> as scientists we barely agree on anything. to say 97% of climate experts say the climate system is camping today is phenomenal. scientists decide some are not buying it. >> it changes, it gets hot and cold, but man made. why did the dinosaurs go extinct. din saurs aside, "techknow" went to washington d.c. where a herd of lawmakers don't agree with the scientists we interviewed. like republican senator, questioning e.p.a. administrator geena mccarthy. >> would you acknowledge that over the last 18 years, that the increase in temperature has been very little, and that it is well below most of the environmental models that showed how fast texture would increase.
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>> no, i would not agree with that. a 1 degree temperature is significant. >> carbon pollution is co2, it's not a pollutant. it's a plant food. it doesn't harm anyone, except temperature increases. that senator is not alone. >> as we hear, 2014 has been the warmest year on record. do you know what this is? it's a snowball. and that is from outside here. so it's very, very cold out. >> i'm not a scientist. i'm not qualified to debate the science over climate change. >> i'm not a scientist, and i don't claim to be. >> i'm not a scientist either. but you know what, i know a lot of really good scientists, at n.a.s.a., and noah, and at our major universities. topping obama's list of experts is dr john halled ron director of the office of sign
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and technologies, lindsay moran office. >> what we are facing is human-driven changes in the global climate that are producing more hot day, heatwaves, extreme downpours and wildfires and droughts. sea level is rising. the ocean is acidifying because it absorbs excess carbon dioxide that humans added into the ocean on republican hill, the leader of the senate and public idea. >> the cleaning is changing and always has. he led a 98-1 vote declaring that climate change is not a hoax. >> the hoax is people are so arrogant that they think they have the power to change climate. that is the ho., not the fact that -- hoax, not the fact that climate is changing.
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"techknow" invited that senator and the other senators from the environmental committee to appear. all declined or did not respond. >> first of all, it's interesting that senator inhough argued only god could change the climate and not long after the pope issued a statement saying the human impacts on climate is a great test for humanity country? >> the fundamental reason is the misperception that being in favour of addressing the climate change challenge is against jobs in the economy. >> i'm not afraid to stand up to big oil. it does us no good to punish manufacturing in missouri, when india and china put up a coal fired plant every 10 minutes, it's the same atmosphere. >> there's a lot of people in the political sphere that think if you admit the reality of climate change, you are inviting a degree of government
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regulation that will be too pervasive, too intrusive, and against the general inclinations, particularly of political parties and factions anti-regulationses. >> do you think substantive contributions from the fossil fuel industry is a factor in the politics of climate change? >> i think that obviously has to be recognised as a factor one strong anti-regulation voice is dr patrick michaels, director for the center of study of science. the libera tarian think tank was co-counselled by charles coke and his brother. they head koch industry, a large company. through their country and foundations they donate to politicians and issues surrounding climate change.
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duds climate change exist? >> of course, since the earth got an atmosphere. >> is climate change manmade. correct. >> michaels is amongst a group of scientist this love the worsening climate change models are wrong much. >> i would argue that every model that we have - i wouldn't argue, these are facts, okay. shows that if we dump the emissions to zero, we don't do anything really over the course of 100 years. that's incontrovertible reality coming from the own models. >> that is the most irrelevant comment i have ever heard. "techknow"'s crystal dilworth turned dr rick tore, a nobel prize-winning citizen, to fact check arguments about climate change. >> it will be destructive. consequences.
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>> so the argument that it doesn't matter what we do, we difference. >> i don't understand the point of that. this is a world issue. the question is what is the world going to do with the texture rise. -- temperature rise. >> if you look at the temperatures measured in the lower atmosphere, by satellites, or you look at all four analyse sis of the weather balloon data, 5,000 to 20,000 feet in the atmosphere. the disparity between the average of the 107 united nations computer model, the disparity between the trends predicted by them, average trends, and what is measured by weather balloons and satellite stunning. >> first of all there's not 107. there are 25 of general circulation models.
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all this stuff about layers in the atmosphere, and all that, it's a question that we do not fully understand. where is the heat going? the big surprise in the period when the surface temperature stayed relatively constant is the temperature of the oceans is still going up. to stick your head in the sand and say everything is all right when it's not - that is foolish. >> we talked to patrick michaels at the cato institute, who has a bit of press for his belief that the federal government has no change. >> i think he's just wrong about that. obviously i strongly disagree. it's a little like the arguments that used to go on about tobacco smoking and cancer, where for years there were people who
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disputed that smoking is implicated in lung cancer. the fact is in modern societies there's a lot of activities that people might want to undertake, that are regulated by the government, because it's in society's interests to minimise the damage from those activities. it's true of smoking and climate change coming up... ..while politicians argue the merits of climate change, miami beach can't wait. >> that bay is not republican, it's not democrat, it knows no limits. following us on twitter and at
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[ ♪♪ ]
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miami beach florida. >> the whole planet comes here to have fun. >> this is an unbelievable place to live. it's the hottest city in the world. >> reporter: walking down the strip of miami beach, it's easy to see why it's a tourist mecca. it is vulnerable to rising sea level. most of it was built not more than four feet above the lines. how they are dealing with it in miami may become a blueprint for the rest of the country. >> we have pictures two blocks from here of people on kayaks when it's high tide and blood. >> reporter: valerie lives a block from the bay and paid the price of sea rise when her condo's parking area turned into a swimming pool. >> by the time you realised what was going on, neighbours came down, everyone helping each
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other. most of us lost our cars. >> you see water in the streets during sunny days without rain. >> reporter: sandwiched between the atlantic ocean and biscayne bay high tide in miami beech has been inching up. up by a third of an inch, and in the last five years accelerating at 1.27 inches annually. >> 2 feet of see level rise is projected from roughly 2040 to 2060. when we get to that point the people on the high ground will be dry. these people will have issues with salt water in their yards. >> reporter: pete is a geographic systems coordinator at florida national university. >> this shows a rise. >> reporter: by 2100 miami florida could disappear under
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sea level rise. there's an effort to save the city. to the casual observer it may look like a construction nightmare. as an administering i can tell you the challenges through the city are massive. and the solutions impressive. >> i thank each and every one of you for being here. it's a great cause - keep the city dry. >> reporter: all this pumps. >> we'll put in 70 to 80 across the city. >> reporter: first-time mayor philip levine is overseeing pumps, each moving 14,000 gallons of water a minute. here? >> this over here is - they are dewatering the ground and putting in filtration systems to make sure the pumps in the ground will put out water that bay. >> reporter: the problem is not just water topping sea walls, but water bubbling up from below.
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miami beach is built on porous limestone that absorbs the rising water. as the limestone is saturated by rising sea, there's an upsurge of water through the sewer system. so far 8 pumps have been installed, and seem to be doing the trick. >> we think we have a great 50-60 year solution. after that human innovation and technology, we believe, will catch up. >> this is the first type anyone did this on a city-wide scale. we'll make mistakes... >> we are the pioneers. >> i like it. >> reporter: with a lifetime in miami, dan is a retired boat cap feign and is an environmental activist. he took us on a tour of the city's efforts. >> let me show you something. they'll raise the sidewalks. look at that. >> reporter: that's what, 2 feet. >> at least 2 feet. it's fine for this building, they have raised the base of the building. but nor that house there, the
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sidewalk. >> reporter: what is different building? >> the first floor is 6 feet off the ground. if you have to leave the beach. >> reporter: keeping everyone here by installing pumps, building sea walls and raising the streets and buildings comes with a pies tag. it sounds necessary but cost. >> $300 million to $400 million. we expect to go to the state and federal government. >> florida's construction changes are not the only obstacle. dr ben curtman, a researcher joined a group of climate scientists with a meeting with online. >> when we are trying to get resources from the state of florida they can't talk about the climate change rer.
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>> christopher is a former florida state attorney, working on waterway issues. he told al jazeera america he was put on notice. >> they said if you know what's good for you we will not use the terms climate change, global sustainability. >> reporter: governor scott denies there's a policy against discussing climate change. department of environment protection - look, there's lots issue. >> what is hard for politicians to get their head around is how to respond to what will happen in 2100. >> reporter: that's when miami beach could be under 6 feet of water. what is your opinion when republicans say man has not caused climate change. >> as mayor, i don't have the liberty or time to debate why climate change is happening. all i have is the opportunity to fix it. the bay is not republican, it's not development, it knows no
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limits. no matter who pays the bill. it will be a short-term fix. with all the innovation that's proposed, do you think it will solve the problem. >> no, it will not solve the problems. miami will are to produce new technologies, invest money to counterbalance the pressure by sea level rise. >> reporter: what about residents that have been here their entire lifetime, what will we do. >> i have been here my entire life. i know for a fact that i'll have to leave. >> reporter: coming up on techno, simulating category 5 hurricanes in a tank. >> the new al jazeera america primetime. get the real news you've been looking for... >> you know, everybody in this country can hear them... >> at 7 a thorough wrap up of the days events >> here are today's top stories... >> things did turn violent... >> god does not discriminate!
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>> and at 8, john seigenthaler digs deeper into the stories of the day. >> this is a complicated situation. the justice department.... >> and at 9, get a global perspective on the news... >> sending their government a message.... >> organizing themselves... >> people say their finally fed up... >> weeknights on al jazeera america primetime >> the peninsula, in arabic, is aljazeera. our logo represents courage. fiercely independent quality reporting. >> to take as much aid as possible... >> and standing up for the voiceless. when you see this symbol respected around the world it means you too can now count on all the things we stand for. aljazeera america.
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this bit of land on the virginia keys is home to a hurricane simulation lab at the home for marine and atmospheric science. pool. >> roughly the size of a large swimming pool. >> reporter: dr brian house runs sustain, surge, structure atmosphere interaction facility. why is it important to recreate the conditions in a chamber? >> there's a couple of things that we are keen to figure out. what causes hurricanes to
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intensify, to come from a cat 3 to a cat 5 in less than 24 hours, and is important not just for hurricanes, but climate change issues >> reporter: we were invited to see a full-speed demonstration. >> there's no computer model that gets to the physics of what's when the high wind is ripping the top of the wind. >> reporter: researchers want a better understanding of the transfer of heat from the ocean surface and sea spray to the atmosphere. what wind speeds are we at now? >> at the equivalent 80 miles per hour category 1 stosh. -- storm. >> reporter: the house is battered and it's only category is. 1. >> the large waves and wind - that's what we are trying to capture. >> reporter: category 4 - pushing against the structure.
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>> we need to understand how buildings can be resilient to these conditions. >> reporter: time to crank it up to full speed, 150 miles per hour, category 5 hurricane. >> fire. >> reporter: i can feel it vibrating now. everything is shaking. >> that was something else. that was a real rush for me. studying a storm in a tank is not just an academic exercise for the researchers here. >> we have chosen to live here, to have our families and homes here in this place where we are just above sea level. it's a personal issue for us. the reality on the ground there in miami is so drastic, but also it seems like a different reality than what they have in d.c. >> true, but what is interesting to me is the department of defense moved beyond the politics.
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this is their 2014 climate change adaptation roadmap, and they have accepted that climate change is happening. it's going to impact the national security, it's a threat multiplier, it will have affects on military installation, they are not worried about the politics or what causes it. future. >> when there's a debate politically, scientifically, 97% of published papers are in agreement. everyone focuses on that. it is interesting, because the 3% is necessary for scientific process. you need to have the main way. >> the people are scientists, crystal. who are they? >> they are contrarians. when you look at the 3% that don't agree with the other 97, what does that mean? oftentimes in science we are taking a narrow look at a specific thing, and that doesn't
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necessarily fit in the context of before. this debate and view is important. unless you add up the tiny little measurements and look at the big picture, you are not understanding the whole problem. >> obviously this is a discussion we could have for hours. it is fascinating. and as the science advances, as the politics advance, we will stay on it. be sure to check us out next time on techknow, we'll bring you more. go behind the scenes at follow you are expert contributons on google. facebook and more. an >> monday - a climate emergency. >> those species could not be here in 10 years. >> nasa steps in to help protect the future of the planet. >> the tropics regulate our climate. >> techknow heads to costa rica to see how one rainforest is fighting back. >> wow! some of these are amazing.
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>> techknow's team of experts show you how the miracles of science... >> this is my selfie, what can you tell me about my future? >> can affect and surprise us. >> don't try this at home. >> "techknow" - where technology meets humanity. monday, 6:30 eastern. only on al jazeera america. >> part of al jazeera america's >> special month long evironmental focus fragile planet this week on "talk to al jazeera" u.n.i.c.e.f. executive director anthony lake. >> you see children everywhere who have not given up hope. if they haven't given up hope, what possible excuse can we have for giving up hope? as the syrian war enters its fifth year he says critical efforts are needed to stop millions of children becoming a lost generation. >> every one of those numbers is an individual child. but these kids are losing their childhoods. from syria and iraq, to the central african republic


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