You might be tempted to hate the guy in the sunglasses — until you realize who he is.

Let's start off with a spoiler: The jerk in the sunglasses is the SAME GUY who's explaining all the science-y stuff. (Whoa! Inception!) Because sometimes the only person you really need to convince is yourself. And all the doubters. Never forget the doubters.


A lot of misconceptions (13, to be exact) were confronted here with some solid facts. How solid? Here's what our fact-checkers found:

  1. CLAIM: Global warming wasn't happening so they changed the name to "climate change." FACT: "Global warming" is technically correct; however, "climate change" indicates the wide range of problems (stronger storms, rising sea levels, ocean acidification, etc.) our planet is facing.
  2. CLAIM: The globe isn't warming. FACT: 13 of the 14 hottest years occurred this century. And the trend is even more clear when satellite data is included.
  3. CLAIM: In the past, scientists said the earth was cooling. FACT: Some scientists in the 1970s predicted cooling, but six times as many papers during the same period said it was warming.
  4. CLAIM: The earth is cooling. FACT: It's not just temperature that shows the warming. Sea levels are rising 3 mm a year, which indicates oceans are warming and, therefore, expanding. Also, Arctic sea ice is melting at unprecedented rates.
  5. CLAIM: Arctic sea ice is increasing. FACT: Look at the bigger data set, not just the latest little uptick, and you'll see the overall trend is downward.
  6. CLAIM: The sun is responsible for warming. FACT: The sun was getting brighter in the 1930s, but since the 1950s, the sun has been getting dimmer — and yet, temperatures continue to rise.
  7. CLAIM: Humans emit only a tiny fraction of CO2. FACT: That's true — 30 gigatons from human activity vs. 780 gigatons from natural processes. But the earth isn't in balance like it used to be, and current CO2 emissions are outpacing the balance. We know the increase is man-made because the isotope carbon 13, which is less common in fossil fuels, is dissipating in the atmosphere. In other words, we're seeing more CO2 in the atmosphere, and it's got the molecular signature of fossil fuels.
  8. CLAIM: Volcanoes emit way more CO2 than humans. FACT: Volcanoes emit about 0.25 gigaton, less than 1% of what humans emit.
  9. CLAIM: Water is by far the most potent greenhouse gas. FACT: Yes! But water in the atmosphere is increasing because the air is warmer. It's still a CO2 problem that creates a positive feedback loop. More CO2, more warming, more water, still more warming, and on and on...
  10. CLAIM: Predictions have failed. FACT: Most predictions actually agree with observations. A model from 1988 did disagree, but that's when we thought climate sensitivity was higher. If you rerun the model with 3 degrees of warming for every doubling of CO2, the predictions are right on.
  11. CLAIM: The earth has warmed and cooled in the past. FACT: Past changes were due to tilt, precession of tilt, and orbit of the earth — the Milankovitch cycles.
  12. CLAIM: CO2 lags behind the temp rise. FACT: 90% of temperature increases start after CO2 rises.
  13. CLAIM: Global warming isn't that bad. FACT: It means more intense weather, acidic oceans, and rising sea levels, along with a bunch of other terrible stuff. We'd be much better off just reducing carbon now, rather than paying the price later.
Planet Victory Climate Change
Courtesy of Houseplant.

In America, one dumb mistake can hang over your head forever.

Nearly 30% of the American adult population — about 70 million people — have at least one criminal conviction that can prevent them from being treated equally when it comes to everything from job and housing opportunities to child custody.

Twenty million of these Americans have felony convictions that can destroy their chances of making a comfortable living and prevents them from voting out the lawmakers who imprisoned them.

Many of these convictions are drug-related and stem from the War on Drugs that began in the U.S. '80s. This war has unfairly targeted the minority community, especially African-Americans.

Keep Reading Show less

Climate change is happening because the earth is warming at an accelerated rate, a significant portion of that acceleration is due to human activity, and not taking measures to mitigate it will have disastrous consequences for life as we know it.

In other words: Earth is heating up, it's kinda our fault, and if we don't fix it, we're screwed.

This is the consensus of the vast majority of the world's scientists who study such things for a living. Case closed. End of story.

How do we know this to be true? Because pretty much every reputable scientific organization on the planet has examined and endorsed these conclusions. Thousands of climate studies have been done, and multiple peer-reviewed studies have been done on those studies, showing that somewhere between 84 and 97 percent of active climate science experts support these conclusions. In fact, the majority of those studies put the consensus well above 90%.

Keep Reading Show less
via James Anderson

Two years ago, a tweet featuring the invoice for a fixed boiler went viral because the customer, a 91-year-old woman with leukemia, received the services for free.

"No charge for this lady under any circumstances," the invoice read. "We will be available 24 hours to help her and keep her as comfortable as possible."

The repair was done by James Anderson, 52, a father-of-five from Burnley, England. "James is an absolute star, it was overwhelming to see that it cost nothing," the woman's daughter told CNN.

Keep Reading Show less

I live in a family with various food intolerances. Thankfully, none of them are super serious, but we are familiar with the challenges of finding alternatives to certain foods, constantly checking labels, and asking restaurants about their ingredients.

In our family, if someone accidentally eats something they shouldn't, it's mainly a bit of inconvenient discomfort. For those with truly life-threatening food allergies, the stakes are much higher.

I can't imagine the ongoing stress of deadly allergy, especially for parents trying to keep their little ones safe.

Keep Reading Show less