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Uploaded:2010-04-12
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This one actually is a rant

Good morning. This is Hank Green with the twelfth day of April, the eleventh day of me vlogging every day in April; and I hope you don't mind if I get a little pissed off today. This happens to me sometimes, sometimes I get pissed off.

 

Sometimes you get pissed off too, I’m sure, but you’re asking yourself: Hank, what are you so pissed off about right now? Well, my friends, I am pissed off that the fricking debate about climate change has come back. "The debate".

 

And you want to know what I think has caused this resurgent in debate? I think it's two things. I think one, it was scientists at the IPCC not taking their jobs seriously and spending too much time trying to engage in the political discourse, and not enough time trying to just do science and do their job, which is science, and not trying convince the world that their science is accurate; but just do their freaking science!

 

Back when someone had hacked into their e-mail accounts it was shown that they were doing all kinds of crazy things to try and make the media understand that climate change was real.

 

And some of those things they were doing helped convince the media and the doubters that climate change was real. Some of those things weren't science. And while climate change deniers, of course, are happy to not have any science and falsify everything in that they do. When actual climate scientist do this, even just a little bit, that is a big, freaking deal and it's totally lame and it's their job. It is our job as thinking, educated people, to not…to not participate in that crap discourse.

 

I have, for a long time, been way past trying to convince people that climate change is real. It's just become a polarized political issue, and polarized political issues don't get…like the discussion breaks down immediately because all the talking points have been assigned to both sides and everyone knows how to counter each other's talking points. It's much more useful for people who know that there is a genuine world-wide problem going on to focus on things like solutions. And solutions that are not too economically disadvantageous and can potentially create opportunities for a lot of people in the world; and that is what I do — I focus on clean technology, focus on solutions that are good for everyone and I'm very excited about those solutions. So the fact that the debate had kind of subsided for a while was making me really happy. But guess what, the debate is back. And that was one of the reasons why I think the debate is back.

 

The other reason, and this is also our fault, is because it was cold this winter. For the sake of this video, because I am angry, I am going to do a little bit of convincing right now. Climate and weather are not the same. I know this is going to sound weird to all you climate deniers — because it is cold where you are does not mean that it is not warm somewhere else. I know that's crazy to think that the weather in one place can be different than the weather in another place. But it turns out that that's totally true. It can be like raining where you are and totally sunny someplace else. It can be cold where you are and really warm in other places. Turns out, that the Earth is really, really big.

 

Here's the thing. Weather changes. Weather is very variable. That's why it rains one day, and it's sunny the next. And it's warm one year, and it's cold the next. It's just why climate scientists don't deal with weather. When people say that the world is getting warmer. They don't mean that every year the world will increase by point-two degrees Celsius. They mean that they're taking floating ten-year averages of the last thousand-years, and seeing that there is a significant and marked increase.

 

And when people say "a significant increase", they are not talking about the fact that they believe that it is significant. There are scientific definitions for "significant". They're seeing a significant increase in the temperature that is, you know, undeniable.

 

And yes, year to year, sometimes the temperature goes down. But to our brains, and this is partially also the fault of, you know, the ridiculous mess of, uh, our side of the political  climate debate. It seems like what's happening now is the important thing. And when Katrina happened, right at the same time people were starting to think about climate change, right at the same time as Al Gore's movie was coming out, people were like: Oh! Wake up call! Weather is changing!

 

Oh no, no, not weather! It's not about weather! Global warming did not cause Katrina! When we, as scientists, start using this fear technique, and these like under-handed, kind of dirty, little lies - that is when it doesn’t' work anymore. That is when it's not about truth anymore. Can we just leave that to them? Can we stop trying to like change our words and be all Orwellian like they do?

 

I get so pissed off when people are like: don't use the word "climate change", because "change" in people's minds is a good thing. Oh f*** you! Really? You don't think that people can understand this? I chose to have faith in the fact that people have a rational and complex understanding of the world. And if they don't, then f*** them.

 

This is me being pissed off. It happens…sometimes. I'm so over this debate. I was over this debate ten years ago. Let's move on. Let's talk about solutions. That's all there is to do right now.  Maybe I'm just lucky that I don't have to think about this in political terms. But when we, as rational, thinking scientists, start to play their game, they've already won. So, let's let them have their people. We'll have our people. And we'll solve this problem for everyone. Cuz that's what it's about. It's not about fighting against people, it's about solving a problem that everyone, everyone currently lives on the planet has.

Okay everyone, sorry about that. I'll see you tomorrow.