If Canada proceeds in exploiting its vast oil sands reserves, it's "game over for the...

If Canada proceeds in exploiting its vast oil sands reserves, it's "game over for the climate," James Hansen writes. Canada’s tar sands contain twice the amount of CO2 emitted by global oil use in all of history, he says; full exploitation plus continuing use of conventional energy sources "would assure that the disintegration of the ice sheets would accelerate out of control... Civilization would be at risk."

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Comments (25)
  • Angel Martin
    , contributor
    Comments (1364) | Send Message
    hey, we have hit the big time !


    guys like Hansen are calling us the world's biggest villians !
    10 May 2012, 05:58 PM Reply Like
  • youngman442002
    , contributor
    Comments (5123) | Send Message
    Boy..this guy knows it all......
    10 May 2012, 06:02 PM Reply Like
  • Larry Smith
    , contributor
    Comments (3127) | Send Message
    Keep talking Mr.Hansen, you have to keep those speaking engagements lined up. But, someday people will see your hysterical claims are all hot air. No pun intended.
    10 May 2012, 06:03 PM Reply Like
  • Neil459
    , contributor
    Comments (2636) | Send Message
    Oh my, oh my, how many batteries does it take to fly a commercial airliner? None, it can't happen.


    Fact. The world has had a lot more CO2 than we have now or are projected to have in the next 100 years. And the world was just fine. This is just more fear mongering to get the minorities, youth, and soccer moms to vote stupid.
    10 May 2012, 06:11 PM Reply Like
  • catamount
    , contributor
    Comments (380) | Send Message
    What's your problem with warmer temps? I want warmer temps b/c I have to pay less for heating. Why is everyone against this?
    10 May 2012, 07:54 PM Reply Like
  • geologist
    , contributor
    Comments (503) | Send Message
    I'm not for nor against what you are saying regarding CO2 levels, but what are the numbers and are you talking about time that humans have been on earth?


    I know for sure that the levels of CO2 have been higher in the geological past, but that was during a time before humans inhabited the planet. The Earth used the be much much warmer than it is now, but we were not around then.


    Just curious about your references and numbers regarding CO2. Regards
    10 May 2012, 10:35 PM Reply Like
  • Neil459
    , contributor
    Comments (2636) | Send Message
    "...but that was during a time before humans inhabited the planet."


    And what in the world does that have to do with anything?


    So your saying it's ok for dinosaurs to live well, but us humans have to go back to the dark ages because; will just because some government con man says so?
    11 May 2012, 09:48 AM Reply Like
  • haruglory12
    , contributor
    Comments (54) | Send Message
    It is game over for Mr. Hansen. Without the lie of extreme global warming caused by exhaling, Mr. Hansen has no purpose in life. He knows his game is over and now he is lashing out against everyone he claims to be protecting. Btw how about the increasing glaciers in the Himalayas?
    10 May 2012, 06:13 PM Reply Like
  • Brian27
    , contributor
    Comments (79) | Send Message
    Put on the clown suit Hansen. It fits you well.
    10 May 2012, 07:56 PM Reply Like
  • Yokyok
    , contributor
    Comments (327) | Send Message
    maybe the dinosaurs could come back. wouldn't be all bad :)
    10 May 2012, 08:10 PM Reply Like
  • Poor Texan
    , contributor
    Comments (3527) | Send Message
    Help reduce carbon dioxide! Everybody quit breathing! :-(
    10 May 2012, 08:18 PM Reply Like
  • saratogahawk
    , contributor
    Comments (2529) | Send Message
    Sorry, this is such bullshit. I have spent 39 years as a environmental scientist doing climate research etc and this is such crap.
    10 May 2012, 08:22 PM Reply Like
  • colecade
    , contributor
    Comments (12) | Send Message
    This is not only bullshit but ludditism at its very worst- I suggest he move off the grid and practice what he preaches and become a hermit. My apologies for being stern but this is such unfounded recycled crap.
    10 May 2012, 08:32 PM Reply Like
    , contributor
    Comments (187) | Send Message
    Rarely do I see 100% of the people that comment on these articles agree. Congratulations Mr. Hansen, you have been deemed a pure fool.
    10 May 2012, 09:22 PM Reply Like
  • briandwright
    , contributor
    Comments (30) | Send Message
    Thank You, Mr. Hansen, for being absolutely correct once again. There may yet be time to save the planet with the continuing benefit of your research and that of your colleagues.
    10 May 2012, 10:21 PM Reply Like
  • MAUX
    , contributor
    Comments (4) | Send Message
    This planet has gone through several warming and cooling trends. Life came, went, came again, and will go yet again. Thinking that humans can truly influence the weather in any way is pathetic! Has anyone counted the amount of CO2 and other poisonous gases that are emitted naturally around the globe? On a daily basis? For eons? We are only a blip in the equation...Regardless, we must be careful not to poison our air, water, and soil. Also, we must strive to preserve nature, and food resources. This is more like practicing "good housekeeping".
    10 May 2012, 11:00 PM Reply Like
  • DaleW
    , contributor
    Comments (70) | Send Message
    I'm sure any man, woman, child, animal, and plant are dead around the lethal out gas caused by the years this event.
    10 May 2012, 11:57 PM Reply Like
  • smarton
    , contributor
    Comments (56) | Send Message
    No, humans can't affect the climate. They can't extinct entire animal species. They can't put holes in the ozone layer. They can't possibly emit enough pollution to make people sick and cause epidemic proportions of childhood asthma. Studies show that smoking tobacco is not harmful to human health. Hmmm, who funded those studies?... I can't remember. The EPA should never have been created, it only serves to hurt corporate profits. We should still be burning leaded gas, licking lead paint, and snorting asbestos - no one has died on the spot from the first sniff. Climate change can't ever affect us. It's only a *little* warm. Said the frog sitting in the pot.


    While people in places like Subsaharan Africa will be dying in higher and higher numbers, species are dying out around you, more and more conflicts erupt in the third world over famines, droughts.
    11 May 2012, 10:19 AM Reply Like
  • Larry Smith
    , contributor
    Comments (3127) | Send Message
    There have been famines and droughts for thousands of years. Species have died out for thousands of years and there has been conflict since man arrived. The earth is a living breathing organism, it continues to evolve and adapt, just has it has since the planet was born. We have had ice ages and warming trends, followed by more cooling. In the 70's the fear was a new ice age, then it was global warming, when the global warming argument started losing credibility it was renamed climate change. We have a hurricane it is climate change. We have a warm winter it is climate change, never mind that last winter was brutally cold. I always thought it was weather.


    Unless all living creatures who inhabit the earth stop breathing, stop expelling gas, stop traveling, stop heating their homes, etc. CO2 will continue to be one of the gases that make up the atmosphere.


    Here is a link concerning artic ice, that shows just how far global warming alarmists go to spin their story. If all the facts don't support are story, only write about half the facts.


    11 May 2012, 11:07 AM Reply Like
  • smarton
    , contributor
    Comments (56) | Send Message
    The fact that humans CAN and DO affect the earth's atmosphere along with virtually every other part of the ecosystem. This leads sane people to the conclusion that we'd do well to not let this influence affect our future negatively.


    CO2 being a naturally occurring atmospheric gas does not mean it's conducive at the current concentrations we've raised it to, and doesn't mean we can't and shouldn't slow the rate of that increase. Simply flawed logic.


    The article you linked is itself misleading. The gain in antarctic sea ice is overshadowed by loss in the arctic. http://bit.ly/ITMSl4
    The more important question is total ice VOLUME, and I can not find good references for that...


    In the end the logic is simple: you increase greenhouse gas concentrations, you will get a warmer planet, regardless of local or temporal variations. There's no way around that. Unless you want to prove that CO2 is not actually a greenhouse gas.
    14 May 2012, 09:34 AM Reply Like
  • saratogahawk
    , contributor
    Comments (2529) | Send Message
    Smarton, the whole issue is enormously complex. For all the factors that may raise climatic temps (and that has happened often in geologic history) similar events have lowered global temps. The albedo effect is well known and significantly affects the total solar energy that can enter the Earth's atmosphere thus reducing net solar insolation. With all the competing issues the models are highly subject to subjective design and reasoning. After 39 years in the air pollution field I still do not feel that the argument is compelling in either direction and I surely don't feel that changing the entire economy of the world is merited with our limited understanding of how the global environment functions. Man has constantly made changes in the environment to make his life more productive and I don't see that stopping in the future. We surely don't have the tools to do without fossil fuels for the time being so decisions to do that have potentially disasterous consequences. Wars have been fought over far less. Even recent research in wind farms shows that the wind farm has an immediate heat island affect on the land below and downwind. Heat island change micro and regional climates significantly so do you also want to stop wind farms? I can make arguments for any so-called green energy. The fact of the matter is that we will affect the Earth's climate no matter what we do so we need to be better able to engineer solutions.
    14 May 2012, 09:57 AM Reply Like
  • Neil459
    , contributor
    Comments (2636) | Send Message
    "The fact that humans CAN and DO affect the earth's atmosphere."


    There is simply no research that proves this.


    "In the end the logic is simple: you increase greenhouse gas concentrations, you will get a warmer planet,"


    And there is no research that proves this is true or bad. In fact, the planet has been much warmer several times in the earth's history. It also had higher concentrations of greenhouse gases (not caused by humans because there weren't any to speak of).


    Get over your god complex and realize that humans do not impact the earth and are not as important as you seem to want.
    15 May 2012, 07:36 AM Reply Like
  • Graham E. Mewburn
    , contributor
    Comments (3) | Send Message
    I am just an Aussie bloke
    I have followed peak oil for nearly 20 years
    now peak oil is in the past
    the IEA says it happened 2006
    crude oil went into decline 2008
    it is declining at 6% PA - IEA and Uppsala Uni
    this is year 5 of crude oil production in decline
    now we are waiting for the
    oil crunch
    Sir Richard Branson predicts an oil crunch by 2015
    the US Military predicts an oil crunch by 2015
    the World Bank predicts an oil crunch by 2015
    so do others
    no need to worry about global warming
    we will stop polluting very soon
    Google key words for verification of the above facts
    you have a little time to become informed
    then you can make an informed decision
    as to what preperations you will make for you and your loved ones
    or you can wait till it happens
    you haven't long
    Graham Mewburn
    11 May 2012, 10:21 AM Reply Like
  • Larry Smith
    , contributor
    Comments (3127) | Send Message
    We are not in peak oil and peak oil did not happen in 2006. I don't believe Richard Branson is an energy expert, so I don't really care what he thinks. We find new oil every day, new technology opens new oil reserves that were previously unexplored. Brazil may have more oil off shore than Saudi Arabia has, the United States produces more oil ow than it did a few years ago. We will be discovering oil and producing oil long after I am gone.
    11 May 2012, 10:47 AM Reply Like
  • Neil459
    , contributor
    Comments (2636) | Send Message
    There is one good thing about us not using American oil. When we run out of Middle East oil, we will still have 100+ years of good old American oil. In that time, I'm betting we can figure out what to do next. The quicker we burn through Middle East oil the better. Because once its gone, we don't have to worry about Middle Eastern terrorism.
    11 May 2012, 06:30 PM Reply Like
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