Joel Nodelman

Joel is an engineer and risk management specialist with over forty years of professional practice. He is committed to helping his clients achieve climate resiliency and sustainability.

Additional Sleazy Climate Tactics - 2-Sided Black and White Arguments

Further Sleazy Climate Tactics – 2-Sided Black and White Arguments

Today, one of my pet peeves, the sleazy black and white climate argument.

I see this all the time, in political discussion, on social media, or simply dealing with folks every day. It is so common, we just often blind to it, and so fall into its trap. 

In academic circles we call this the “false dilemma” or “False dichotomy”. But, these are just fancy ways of saying that the argument incorrectly demands that we accept there are only two sides to any issue. If you accept one, you reject the other. Most times, this is simply false.

As the heat builds up in the climate dialogue, I see this more and more often, even from very knowledgeable and otherwise trustworthy folks. 

Yet 1 More Sneaky Climate Tactic - Cherry Picking

Yet 1 More Sneaky Climate Tactic – Cherry Picking

Cherry picking data is a sneaky climate tactic, that we often see during a period of normal weather that seems to go against the trend. Often, powerful folks use this technique like politicians, media pundits, or influencers on our social networks.

It usually spawns a barrage of memes and re-posts across social media. Folks jump on the bandwagon. There is a ton of noise.

I find this climate tactic more frustrating than most of the others. It misrepresents Global Warming entirely.  It is wrong on so many levels that climate change specialists are left speechless because we don’t even know where to begin. So, often, it goes unchallenged.

Abusing the Person - The Number 1 Lazy Climate Change Tactic

Abusing the Person – The Number 1 Lazy Climate Change Tactic

Today I start my series on bad climate arguments with the number 1 lazy climate change tactic, the personal attack, also known as the ad hominem argument.

In the world of applied science, we use the word “argument” to mean a logical reasoning process, based on evidence that leads to a conclusion.

This differs from the emotional conflict of a quarrel. Emotions have very little to do it. We are looking for evidence to support a conclusion, and based on that conclusion, an action plan founded on concrete data and rigorous science.

5 Definitive Stages of Climate Change Grief

5 Definitive Stages of Climate Change Grief

It occurred to me that accepting the harsh reality of climate change is very much like the grieving process. We go through stages. Some of us may skip a step here and there, and we may bounce around between stages.

Our goal is to get to acceptance.

Those of us who advocate for climate action, have all travelled this journey.

This year, my goal is to help others along this path.

1 Final Optimistic Video for 2019 1

1 Final Optimistic Video for 2019

We are rapidly approaching the end of 2019. At the beginning of the year, Joan and I set a target … We will post one new blog every week this year. This video is our 51st posting this year and, I think the last one until the New Year.

Joan and I want to send out a huge thank you to all of you who travelled this journey with us this year. Your feedback and support made it all worthwhile.

Climate Change – 2 Optimistic Messages 2

Climate Change – 2 Optimistic Messages

This week I was somewhat preoccupied with sports. Perhaps in reaction to all the Grey Cup coverage over the last couple of weeks. I am not the biggest sports fan, but live in a place where sports can dominate the media, the news I read, and the radio I listen to. The highs and lows of sports offer welcome relief from the really serious stuff that normally preoccupies me, climate change.

1 Problem with Climate Change Dollars and Sense 3

1 Problem with Climate Change Dollars and Sense

Today, I want to discuss climate change dollars and sense.

Human caused climate change is real. Those of us that work in climate change have long since dealt with our doubts about it. In previous videos I shared some of my own struggles coming to grips with this. It is a big idea. The world is big and we are so small. How can the idea that we are causing climate change ever be credible?

In fact, IT IS an incredible idea, and a very scary one. Accepting it obligates us to do something. And this onus, adds further incentive to reject the idea outright. Most of us are pretty comfortable. We really like the way things are. Why should I accept any idea that demands that I change?

More Struggles with Climate Hypocrisy 7

More Struggles with Climate Hypocrisy

I have struggled for some time with the idea that we need to be perfect to advocate change. This idea often comes up when we talk about the need for climate action. Often, the discussion degrades rapidly into accusations of hypocrisy.

It is easy to take the emotional bait. We feel guilty, try to justify ourselves, and regain our emotional composure, usually by trying to convince the other guy that we have the moral credentials to make our case.

Climate Change - The Death of 1000 Cuts 8

Climate Change – The Death of 1000 Cuts

Every step in the right direction is a good step.

We need to remember that climate change is the death of a thousand cuts. It results from the cumulative effect of all of our carbon use, not just that of a few large emitters.

We need to celebrate each success along the way, small as it may be. If we demand perfection, before we act, we never make progress.

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