Monday, September 28, 2015

Some Good News from the Southern Ocean, the Arctic, and Republican Pollsters

Since most news about climate change falls in the two categories of "confirming our worst fears" and "creating new, more depressing fears" I thought I'd share a few tidbits of recent good news.
The downside mentioned by one of the study's lead scientists, Nicolas Gruber - "One has to recognise that despite this remarkable increase in the Southern Ocean carbon sink, emissions have gone up even more."
The downside of this good news is that it describes the attitudes of potential voters, not Republican elected officials or candidates for the top office of the country. Potential voters are not the same as political party influencers, unfortunately. The more extreme voices are appearing to win the day in terms of how the elected/ would-be elected leadership is positioning itself on climate change.
I don't see any downside here!

This Sept. 28, 2015, BBC article has some helpful maps illustrating the location of the Shell test drilling site with respect to the ice extent and international boundaries.

The Arctic will never be safe from the threat of oil drilling as long as we use oil in our energy stream, but for "the foreseeable future" it is safe from Royal Dutch Shell.

Meanwhile, the Russian oil production project by Gazprom Neft is still active in the Pechora Sea, drilling at the Prirazlomnoye Arctic field, apparently unaffected thus far by sanctions, unlike the Rosneft/Exxon joint drilling project in the Kara Sea.

Still further north from the Gazprom Neft project, the "Goliat" platform, owned by the Italian energy group Eni and Norwegian company Statoil, is in place at the border of the Barents Sea and Norwegian Sea. According to the BBC article cited above, it "could soon start producing oil ... within weeks." So, the Arctic Oil Rush is underway, just without one of the world's biggest oil multinationals.

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