Sunday, August 22, 2010

President Medvedev Says Russians Have Serious Lessons to Learn from the 2010 Wildfires

"What is happening to our planet's climate should motivate all of us, I mean, states and heads of non-governmental organizations, to take more active steps to resist global warming."---Russian President Dmitry Medvedev (RIA Novosti, 7-30-10)

"We have serious lessons to learn from what has happened."---Russian President Dmitry Medvedev (RIA Novosti, 8-21-10)

This summer, Russia has been suffering from a heatwave, a drought, and hundreds of destructive wildfires. Russia's official government news agency, RIA Novosti, has frequently been citing NASA satellite reports about the fires. Sometimes, however, the smoke is so thick that NASA cannot see the ground or even some of the fires. Here is a link to the word Russia on the NASA search engine. Here is a link to the word NASA on the RIA Novosti site. RIA Novosti has a special report in Russian called Hot Summer--2010. The articles are in Russian, but you can use your Google translation tool. The articles frequently quote NASA satellite data.

NASA even has a Moscow Liason Office at the U.S. Embassy. NASA's representative in Russia is Patrick Buzzard. Mr. Buzzard has a Russian-English blog, but he hasn't posted since May. Maybe he is busy manning the satellites.

NASA satellite maps, computer simulations, can help scientists spot places in danger of wildfires before blazes even begin. Probably this mission will become even more important as the earth is impacted by droughts caused by global warming. Perhaps NASA has even been able to help the Russians spot some of these fires so they could be extinguished.

I don't know if the fires this summer in Russia can be attributed to global warming. One swallow does not make a spring; on the other hand, these catastrophic wildfires may be a harbinger of global warming in Russia. When scientists study global warming, they track long-term trends, not single events.

According to "The Russian Heat Wave of 2010 Draft Report by NOAA CSI - 13 August 2010," the immediate cause of Russia's heat wave can be attributed to an extreme pattern of atmospheric winds---called "blocking"---"a static atmospheric pattern that has trapped a high-pressure bubble over western Russia since mid-July, pulling in hot air from Africa."

New Scientist (8-12-10) reports:

Computer models of climate are not detailed enough at present to reproduce blocking events, making it impossible to say whether rising greenhouse gas concentrations makes them more likely to happen.

Some articles in RIA Novosti have attributed the fires to global warming. One Russian conspiracy theorist, a historian named Dr. Andrei Areshev, even claimed that U.S. scientists are causing global warming by using secret "climate weapons" against other countries! Paranoid conspiracists like Areshev do a lot of damage because their conspiracies make people afraid of the very scientists who could help them solve their problems. Dr. Andrei Areshev doesn't understand global warming so he can only make up a conspiracy theory, but that doesn't mean that climate scientists don't understand what is happening.

RIA Novosti (8-21-10) reports:

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev said earlier on Friday that the government has managed to overcome the wildfire crisis and has valuable lessons to learn from the experience.

"Russia has gained control and on the whole I think that the situation has normalized," Medvedev said. "We have serious lessons to learn from what has happened."

I wonder what lessons President Medvedev will learn from this terrible summer. Perhaps he will learn to listen to NASA instead of spreading canards in the official media cooked up by dishonest, destructive troublemakers like Lord Christopher Monckton and Dr. Andrei Areshev about the "crafty plots" of climate scientists.

Last winter, the Kremlin-financed Russia Today satellite T.V. interviewed the English conspiracist Lord Monckton who promoted the view that global warming was a "hoax" cooked up by Western scientists. His claims were not challenged by climate scientists. This summer, Russia's official press agency RIA Novosti reported Dr. Andrei Areshev's defamatory claim that U.S. climate scientists were causing global warming with secret "climate weapons." How can it be that in the winter global warming is a "hoax" that isn't happening and in the summer the climate scientists are causing global warming with secret climate weapons?

In the U.S. destructive canards about the "plots" of climate scientists are also spread by politicians such as Oklahoma Senator Inhofe and Virginia's Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli. Those two American politicians are even persecuting climate scientists. History will remember Inhofe and Cuccinelli as destructive, mendacious demagogues who followed the money instead of leading the people.

Even in Russia, politicians eventually retract ridiculous lies about scientists because they have to deal with reality.

In his famous 1956 "Secret Speech" to the 20th Party Conference, Nikita Khrushchev stated:

Let us...recall the “affair of the doctor-plotters.”

(Animation in the hall.)

Actually there was no “affair” outside of the declaration of the woman doctor [Lidiya] Timashuk [more here], who was probably influenced or ordered by someone (after all, she was an unofficial collaborator of the organs of state security) to write Stalin a letter in which she declared that doctors were applying supposedly improper methods of medical treatment.

Izvestiya (3-19-92) reported:

[Russian intelligence chief Yevgeni Primakov]
mentioned the well known articles printed a few years ago in our central newspapers about AIDS supposedly originating from secret Pentagon laboratories. According to Yevgeni Primakov, the articles exposing US scientists' "crafty" plots were fabricated in KGB offices.

Official Government media in a great nation should help people understand what scientists and the peer-reviewed literature are saying. Government media shouldn't be spreading ignorant conspiracy theories that confuse people with lies and half-truths as if it were some mendacious blog like Marc Morano's Climate Depot.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is a good example of official media that explains science and debunks conspiracy theories financed by selfish and short-sighted fossil fuel interests. See here and here.

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