Blog Roundup #52

A sampling of United Nations related blog commentary

Outside the Beltway: “The UN is warning that the Asian bird flu could spread to humans and kill up to 150 million people.”

Fed Blog: “John Bolton made clear Wednesday that he believes the United Nations has systematic management problems, but the new U.S. ambassador to the world body said he held out hope that those problems could be fixed.”

American Future: “Reassuring words from Tony Blair’s speech at the Labour Party Conference: “British troops whose bravery and dedication we salute, along with those of 27 other nations, have been in Iraq with full United Nations authority and in support of the Iraqi Government.”

Balloon Juice: “I am a little fuzzy on the science of this: “Capturing and storing the carbon dioxide generated by power plants and factories could play an important role in limiting global warming caused by humans, says an international climate research group associated with the United Nations. In a new report the group, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, says doing so could cut the cost of stabilizing carbon dioxide concentrations in the atmosphere as much as 30 percent compared with other options, like switching to cleaner technologies.” So they will capture it, pipe it somewhere, and store it in big tanks and wells forever?”

Centerfield: “Reuters: With Katrina and Rita dominating the news recently, there’s a good deal of talk out there about the relationship between hurricanes and climate change (or global warming). And it comes down to this: Are these larger, more powerful hurricanes related to climate change, or not? Reuters: “Scientists say it’s not easy to tell if global warming caused hurricanes Katrina and Rita but on Monday they forecast more unpredictable weather as Earth gets hotter. ‘Global warming, I think, is playing a role in the hurricanes,’ said Kevin Trenberth, a senior scientist at the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colorado. ‘But a lot of what is going on is natural. What global warming may be doing is making them somewhat more intense,’ said Trenberth, a member of the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.'”

Informed Comment: “The United Nations is urging member states not to send Iraqi asylum seekers back to Iraq, since it is too dangerous.”

Nuno Macedo: “Today was the first day of the UNHCR annual consultations with NGOs that will last the whole week. As intern of the UN Liaison Office of the General-Conference of the Seventh-Day Adventist Church, I could not miss it! So there I go to the plenary session… We then had a very inspirational speech from Gil Loescher, Emeritus Professor of Political Science and International Relations of Notre Dame University, who was nearly killed in the bombing at the U.N. headquarters in Baghdad in August 2003. At a moment of the speech he said something that made the entire assembly hold its breath, more or less like this: …it was with them (speaking about refugees) that I learnt how to survive and live under difficult conditions which, ultimately, has been very useful for my own recovery (he made his speech in his wheel chair).”