Listening to California Parks People Discuss Climate Change

Some random highlights:

  • I watched a 20 minute presentation in which a woman from LA parks talked repeatedly about the urban heat island being a result of global warming
  • I just saw that California State Parks, which is constantly short of money and has perhaps a billion dollars in unfunded maintenance needs, just spent millions of dollars to remove a road from a beachfront park based solely (they claimed) based on projections that 55 inches of sea level rise would cause the road to be a problem.  Sea level has been rising 3-4mm a year for over 150 years and even the IPCC, based on old much higher temperature increase forecasts, predicted about a foot of rise.
  • One presenter said that a 3-5C temperature rise over the next century represent the low end of reasonable forecasts.  Most studies of later are showing a climate sensitivity of 1.5-2.0 C (I still predict 1C) with warming over the rest of the century of about 1C, or about what we saw last century
  • I watched them brag for half an hour about spending tons of extra money on make LEED certified buildings.  As written here any number of times, most LEED savings come through BS gaming of the rules, like putting in dedicated electric vehicle parking sites (that do not even need a charger to get credit).  In a brief moment of honesty, the architect presenting admitted that most of the LEED score for one building came from using used rather than new furniture in the building.
  • They said that LEED buildings were not any more efficient than most other commercial buildings getting built, just a matter of whether you wanted to pay for LEED certification -- it was stated that the certification was mostly for the plaque.  Which I suppose is fine for private businesses looking for PR, but why are cash-strapped public agencies doing it?


  1. Onlooker from Troy:

    Drinking the kool aid, for sure.

  2. lelnet:

    I was going to write a comment about how, at least with using used furniture, they probably saved a bit of money on that. Then I remembered that this is California, where the government no doubt has dozens if not hundreds of ways to make used furniture even more expensive than brand new furniture, if used furniture is what they decide they should have.

  3. Matthew Slyfield:

    "Which I suppose is fine for private businesses looking for PR, but why are cash-strapped public agencies doing it?"

    This is CA you are talking about, they are probably required by law to have any new gov buildings LEED certified.

  4. Not Sure:

    Potemkin villages in California? What do you suppose the odds of that happening are?

  5. don:

    LEED certification is administered by a non-tax paying (non-profit) organization hiding behind a governmental sounding name, US Green Building Council. For a small 50k sf building project, they charge you to register your project $1,200, plus $2,750 to review of the design and construction costing on the magnitude of tens of thousands of dollars, charge for the architects and engineers $550.00 to be LEED certified, which you have to have on the project to get the points. If you are doing a larger project (500,000sf) just multiply the review fees by ten and get $27,500.00 in review fees. Then they send you a ten dollar plaque.
    Genius if you ask me, I just wish I would have thought of it and sold it to the hippy liberals. Pay myself a large salary to review a few drawings, use the matrix you force the consultants to fill out to calculate the rating, mail the plaque, cash your paycheck. Absolutely brilliant.

  6. Nehemiah:

    Warren, why, may I ask, did you sit through a meeting of this nature? Did you venture a rebuttal to anything that was said?

  7. Sam L.:

    Example 1--"Urban heat island
    An urban heat island is a metropolitan area that is
    significantly warmer than its surrounding rural areas due to human
    activities. The phenomenon was first investigated and described by Luke
    Howard in the 1810s, although he was not the one to name the phenomenon.
    ...As a population center grows,
    it tends to expand its area and increase its average temperature. The
    less-used term heat island refers to any area, populated or not, which
    is consistently hotter than the surrounding area.
    More at Wikipedia" Too young to know better, or too ignorant?

    Example 2--Must be done today because it will cost more when it really needs to be done.

    Example 5--"Which I suppose is fine for private businesses looking for PR, but why are cash-strapped public agencies doing it?" Because they BELIEVE! Or their bosses do.


  8. randian:

    Even if the 55 inches of sea rise were real, why on earth would you waste money removing the road when you could let it become flooded and useless for free? Besides, the road probably had years of useful life left before it becomes flooded.

    Where is all the water supposed to come from to occupy the volume represented by a 55 inch higher sea level? Spontaneous matter generation?

  9. sean2829:

    I saw this you tube video about PV solar which also had a section on LEED certified buildings. If you have to cut a tree down to put solar panels on your roof, the extra cooling load negates energy generated by panels, even if you ignore the amount of energy that went into their manufacture. He also has a section on the use of PV solar in LEED buildings describing them as a temple to solar energy as opposed to being a practical energy source at about the 27-28 minute mark. Clearly, LEED certification is being done to feel good as opposed to doing good.

  10. HenryBowman419:

    Idiots seem to be attracted to California. Then, they breed more idiots...

  11. Not Sure:

    "Example 5--"Which I suppose is fine for private businesses looking for PR, but why are cash-strapped public agencies doing it?" Because they BELIEVE! Or their bosses do."
    Because it's not their money.

  12. Incunabulum:

    The Antarctic polar ice. Which when it melts and runs into the ocean is supposed to somehow counter the sea level *decrease* that the Arctic polar ice melting will cause.

  13. Incunabulum:

    Doubly so since, once the building is actually occupied, you can expect that as many senior personnel as possible are going to want have their furniture replaced immediately.

  14. mesaeconoguy:

    Yet more reasons

    a) Why I refuse to live in CA, and

    b) CA is screwed

  15. Me too:

    All govt work is PR

  16. Douglas2:

    Thanks for that very interesting video. In areas outside of his focus he parrots a few things that I think are probably also fairy-tales, such as the comparative efficiency of energy use in capitalist vs. other economies and the efficiency of light rail systems. I like his use of the term "fetishists" to describe those who want the totems of green energy production but aren't actually interested in what the actual enviromental impact of their choices might be.

  17. jhertzli:

    It makes more sense for leftists to complain about urban heat islands than global warming. Urban heat islands really are caused by capitalism.

  18. Not Sure:

    Leftists also think people should live in high density housing in the middle of the city, not in single family homes in the suburbs. So there's that, too...

  19. jhertzli:

    In suburb, they claim we need less low-density housing. In cities, they claim we need less high-density housing. I think they're opposed to building anything.

  20. randian:

    They're BANANAs: Build Absolutely Nothing Anywhere Near Anything.

  21. obloodyhell:

    }}}} Which I suppose is fine for private businesses looking for PR, but why are cash-strapped public agencies doing it?

    1) They are liberals. It makes them "feel good about themselves".
    2) It''s not their money. Now see #1.

  22. obloodyhell:

    Useless chicken parts dipped in battery acid as an appetizer seems like a bigger scam, but not by much.

    Let the Enron people and Bernie Madoff go, they're mere pikers.

  23. obloodyhell:

    This goes hand in hand with being Perpetually Indignant. Anything you build is an excuse to get on your high horse and ride around in your dudgeon...