[Vision2020] Tutorial on science of human-induced climate change in a Federal District Court

Ted Moffett starbliss at gmail.com
Tue May 1 21:05:11 PDT 2018

Vision2020 Post: Ted Moffett
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As the Trump propaganda machine continues to turn Truth upside down, with
Trump a major generator of fake news, and the global warming denialist junk
science promoter EPA head Pruitt makes a mockery of science based policy,
at least in a US Federal Court credible professional climate science was
presented, a glimmer of hope:

The full article can be read at the website below:


The Alsup Aftermath
25 April 2018

*The presentations from the Climate Science tutorial
last month have all been posted (links below), and Myles Allen (the first
presenter for the plaintiffs) gives his impression of the events.*

*Guest Commentary by Myles Allen*

A few weeks ago, I had an unusual — and challenging — assignment: providing
a one-hour “tutorial” on the basic science of human-induced climate change
to a Federal District Court in San Francisco. Judge William Alsup had
requested this tutorial to bring him up to speed on the fundamental science
before proceedings begin in earnest in a case brought by the cities of San
Francisco and Oakland, on behalf of the people of California, against a
group of major fossil fuel companies, addressing the costs of climate
change caused, they argue, by products those companies have sold.

The format was straightforward — two hours each for the plaintiffs and the
defendants, and the judge had provided us with a series of questions on the
essential physics that he wanted addressed, as well as requesting a timeline
of how our understanding of climate change has evolved over the past 150
years. My presentation was followed by Professors Gary Griggs, showing
detailed projections of sea-level rise and its impacts on California
and Don Wuebbles, presenting key findings from the latest US National
Climate Science Special Report
(also speaking for the plaintiffs). Between Gary and Don, the Court heard
from Theodore Boutrous
a lawyer speaking on behalf of Chevron, one of the defendants.

The case was fairly widely covered, (here’s an example
and most of the attention was, understandably, on what the oil companies
had to say: the fact that Gary, Don and I agreed with the IPCC was hardly
ever likely to be newsworthy. But I’ve had a few requests since about what
I presented — including from some students who spotted that a carefully
compressed summary of climate change science might be quite handy revision
material. So, with exam season nearly upon us, here it is — or at least,
here is what I would have presented if I’d got through it all: in preparing
this material, I had completely failed to anticipate the number and depth
of Judge Alsup’s questions, so we only got as far as the Charney Report.

Prior to the hearing, Andrew Dessler on Twitter, Gavin Schmidt at
RealClimate and Oliver Milman at the Guardian all had a crack at the
judge’s questions:
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