TV3 on track this time

Oxfam-africaI was quick to condemn TV3 news for its gratuitous introduction of denialist claims into its item last week on the Greenpeace ship Esmeralda’s  Pacific climate impact tour.  It’s a pleasant duty to be equally quick to report that their story tonight on Oxfam’s concerns at the suffering of northern Ugandans from the effects of climate change was told straightforwardly and without any nods in the direction of denial.  Mike McRoberts was on the scene and provided a report sympathetic to the plight of the unfortunate people he was taken to see. 

Oxfam’s just-released report was the subject of the item, and it was made clear that Mike McRoberts presence in Uganda was as a result of an Oxfam invitation.  It was straight reporting, in which TV3 was not itself required to take up any position on climate change, though it was clear from the manner of the presentation that they took Oxfam seriously. And they went to the trouble to make the report available on their website.

 I hope it means that TV3 has given up the notion that because it is reporting an organisation that takes climate change seriously it needs to insert a caveat that some don’t.

18 thoughts on “TV3 on track this time”

  1. “I hope it means that TV3 has given up the notion that because it is reporting an organisation that takes climate change seriously it needs to insert a caveat that some don’t.”
    We live in hope!

  2. The Lord’s resistance army, AIDS, Idi Amin (and successors), War with its neighbours, corruption, dictatorship, kleptocracy, ignorance, superstition, tribalism, neopotism, religion, women’s rights (lack of), genital mutilation, western protectionism against the poorest countries’ products…

    For TV3 to be lead by the nose by Oxfam. To ignore these multiple elephants in the room, and declare the they have discovered desperate people due to…climate change… , and offer zero evidence that that country’s weather is outside historical variability is breathtaking inanity.

  3. None of those amount to much against the reality of drought. The Oxfam report acknowledges that the effects of climate change are often tied in with other factors. Here is a quote from their report:

    “Most problems faced by poor people have multiple causes: for example, a family may migrate because of poor prospects, conflict, crop failure, and poor health, and some or all of these problems can be related to climate. Climate change is increasing the day-to-day burdens that poor people endure in trying to make a living – and that is the reason these stories are cited here.”

    But it’s evidence you demand. More extreme events than usual won’t serve, even though they fit the predictions of what we can expect. The cumulative evidence seems overwhelming to me and I think the Oxfam report, which I have read, stays well within the bounds of probability.

  4. Please explain how the Ugandans will be advantaged by constricting the economies of the potential markets for their goods, and restricting their access to cheap, reliable energy?

    1. Steve, we will all be advantaged if we take whatever steps are necessary to combat climate change. I don’t accept that it will necessarily mean constricting our economy, as I said in a post some months ago, but if we carry on as usual the future will be bleak for us and Uganda. If you don’t share the concern over the reality of climate change it’s difficult to reply to your questions.

  5. It appears you’ve never heard of the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM), Steve. In its current form it has put a lot of cash into “advantaging the economies” of the developing world, and in whatever form it takes in the successor to Kyoto (K2), it will pump a lot more. Also note that UK PM Gordon Brown has been calling for $100 billion a year in aid for the developing world as a part of K2.

    It is also worth pointing out that the people who suffer most from the impacts of climate change will not be the rich who can afford to adapt or move, but the poor in all countries – especially in the developing world.

  6. The CDM is a rort that has spawned the normal perverse unintended consequences. Factories in India and China being constructed solely for the purpose of being deconstructed and claiming the cash.
    As for the money being “pumped” anywhere: where does it come from? Oh yeah. My taxes. Thereby displacing real economic activity in favour of the politically favoured.

    Bryan, you “don’t accept” that a 40% reduction in GHG (meaning an even steeper reduction per capita) over the next 10 1/2 year will constrict our economy? Remember this when the baby boomers will hit out technological health system. It’s fantasy.

  7. Steve, the most serious fantasy is that we can safely ignore global warming. To address it we have to reshape the economy. (We would have had to eventually anyway, when fossil fuel ran out.) To freeze with panic at the prospect is not a sensible way to start. There are many ways in which we can get things going, from renewal energy to changed patterns of transport to altered farming practices and more.

  8. Bryan, your economics are are barmy as a 20-year old choosing, and putting a deposit on his rest home, before he’s started to save for a house.

    The possibility that in 300 years we may have to rely on windmills and solar panels, is no reason to forego much cheaper and reliable energy sources now. No-one else will.

    “My experience as a missionary teacher in Africa opened my eyes to this simple fact: Without access to energy, life is brutal and short. The uncertain impacts of global warming far in the future must be weighed against disasters at our doorsteps today….spending on health issues such as micronutrients for children, HIV/AIDS and water purification has benefits 50 to 200 times those of attempting to marginally limit “global warming.””
    -John R. Christy: director of the Earth System Science Center at the University of Alabama in Huntsville and a participant in the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change

  9. “The possibility that in 300 years we may have to rely on windmills and solar panels, is no reason to forego much cheaper and reliable energy sources now.”

    I agree, and I was not offering that as a reason, merely as a supporting observation. The reason why we must forego so called cheaper energy sources is that they are destroying the climate in which human civilisation developed and building the likelihood of catastrophic consequences if we continue. You obviously don’t think any such likelihood exists. Why not just say so. There is little point continuing these exchanges in that case.

  10. Steve, I have a nice large bucket of sand here you can bury your head in.

    Peak oil is not 300 years away, more like 30. The oil companies don’t want us to start thinking about that, because if we have not moved away from an oil-based economy well before then, they stand to make some quite stupendous profits when the price of oil goes through the roof.

    This explains why they are so assiduous in funding the climate denial disinformation campaign.

    But of course, you are free to think whatever the oil companies want you to think, if that makes you happy.

  11. The CDM does not have to be funded by the public purse. In fact the idea is for the private sector to get into funding CDM projects as a means of gaining credits so as to undertake projects in their own countries (a cost of doing business). It is another mechanism to internalise the cost of carbon. I agree that the system has been and can be subject to rort, but then any financial/trade dealings can be (and have), does this possibility mean that we turn our back completely on the market? No we develop oversight, trade standards, accpetable practices and behavioural norms that minimise this potential. Just has we do for the sharemarket, forex and derivatives (yes these are really hard, much harder than CDM) markets.

    As an aside I suppose he got the 50-500 figure from Lomborg’s Copenhagen consenus. If you have read what little documentation there is it is not the most robust of economic analyses.

    Dr Christy seems to assume that CC and the adverse impacts from other issues on developing communities are mutually exclusive and by implication the measures to address them are also mutually exclusive (competing for funds). CC will make many of the problems currently faced in these countries worse (drought, famine, diesase, conflict etc.). They will need to be addressed together.

    CDM potentially provides a mechanism for developing countries to leapfrog old school fossil based economies and as CTG has pointed out since fossil fuels are on the way out due to emerging resource limits why have them invest in it. (This raises some interesting questions about how much longer China and India can drive their economic development using coal).

    Think of it like the telephone do these emerging countries have to install country wide land based copper systems or do they just go straight to cellular or satellite?

  12. Bryan: “..we must forego so called cheaper energy sources [because] they are destroying the climate ”
    What observation would falsify this belief?

    1. What observation would falsify this belief?

      Recovery of the multi-year sea ice in the Arctic. Growth and slow-down of the massive glaciers in Antarctica. Recovery of glaciers worldwide. Lowering of globally measured temperatures. Sea level stopping rising. Lowering of COâ‚‚ levels (indicating absorption by biomass or other uptake).

      Guess what, none of these things are happening.

  13. Steve, as Sam’s comments make clear climate change is attested by a now vast array of evidence. I can assure you I’d be more than happy for it to turn out to be all mistaken, as no doubt we all would. But I can see no possibility ahead which would have that result. You refer to it as a belief, but it’s a matter of inescapable facts so far as I can see. And they reveal a perilous situation which we must try to escape or at least ameliorate.

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