A Weather Report on the Road to Paris

This article was originally published on Huffington Post, on September 15, 2015, by William S Becker.    When TIME magazine published the "Top 10 Geopolitical Risks of 2015" at the beginning of this year, foreign affairs columnist Ian Bremmer listed friction in the European Union, Russia's ambitions in Ukraine, China's slowing economy, ISIS and assorted other "geopolitical trends we consider most likely to change our world in the coming year". Remarkably, climate change and the movement toward an international agreement to combat it did not make the list. Assuming the agreement is achieved and short of nuclear war, it is hard to imagine a more consequential development. Photo: A NASA satellite captured this image of smoke from just one of the fires that burned earlier this year in California, this one near the San Bernardino National Forest. Mr. Bremmer published his list so we could track "market-moving surprises in international politics". There could be some debate about whether a climate treaty 20 years in the making would be a surprise this December when nearly 200 nations meet in

September 15th, 2015|Uncategorized|

The Most Important Elections in 2016

This article was originally published on Huffington Post, on September 14, 2015, by William S Becker.    When historians evaluate the presidency of Barack Obama, they will conclude that he and his administration did a remarkable job combatting climate change, given the limits of his legal authorities and the active opposition from the wholly owned subsidiary of the fossil energy sector, better known as Congress. Unless there is a radical change in Congress's direction, the same historians will reach the verdict that America's highest lawmaking body was part of a conspiracy with polluters in crimes against humanity. The crimes in question were Congress's persistent work to block any effort to prevent global warming. Scholars will note the result: Enormous suffering among the world's people including those Congress was elected to serve. In short, history's chroniclers will conclude that nation that held itself up as humanity's greatest hope turned out to be humanity's greatest disappointment. The United States Congress succumbed to greed -- the greed of politicians for power and the greed of energy barons to profit as much and as

September 14th, 2015|Uncategorized|