Friday, December 30, 2016

IP law dictionary review

Copyright © Françoise Herrmann

Review of A Dictionary of Intellectual Property Law by Peter Groves
Edward Elgar Publishing Inc.  (Northampton, MA)
2011 - ISBN 978-0-85793-519-9

Hardcopy dictionaries are probably a species in danger of fast extinction considering the competing practicality, sustainability and climate-friendly availability of both mobile and cloud-based technologies. What is perhaps even rarer is an ever-evolving dictionary, harvested from a blog and informed by a community of subscribers, a state of which was frozen into print, in 2011. Indeed, Peter Groves’ Dictionary of intellectual property Law is inspired by a companion blog with the same name as the print version ( where readers are invited to post comments, critiques and entry/header suggestions.

Peter Groves’ Dictionary of Intellectual Property Law is also part of a rare species of dictionaries that reads like a fascinating A to Z book! Each definition of an IP term appears as a short (sometimes even single sentence) or longer stand-alone paragraph, with none of the other usual information such as etymology, pronunciation, potential synonyms, lists of possible meanings depending on the particular context, columns, or other sorts of systematic categorization. This does not mean that grammatical functions (e.g.; noun verb or adjective) or pronunciation never appear in any of the definitions, nor any of the other categories, or even translations to English for foreign terms. Clearly they do, since Groves’ definition of a “patent”, for example, includes both grammatical and pronunciation information.  Indeed, the definition for patent is organized into three paragraphs for noun, adjective and verb forms of the term patent, and both the short and long vowel “a” pronunciations are distinguished as American and British English variations. The point, however, is that these categories do not systematically organize all of the entries, as they might in other sorts of dictionaries, which one might not use as armchair reading.

Peter Groves’ credentials appear important within the context of a dictionary of IP Law that treks off the beaten path. This is, after all, a dictionary that was harvested from a blog and that reads like a book, containing very personally authored definitions.  Peter Groves is a British Solicitor (i.e.; an attorney) who consults for a British firm called C.J. Jones Solicitors, LLP. He is also the author of another blog called Ipso Jure Blog ( among many other career items listed in the blog tab “About me”. This dictionary of intellectual property law is thus explicitly concerned with English law. However, since patents, trademarks and copyrights, are international, even of global scope, and the rights conferred extend to ever increasing geo-political spheres, it would truly be impossible to write a national IP dictionary!  For example, the first definition of this dictionary is for “1-click” (cross-referenced to One-click), the Amazon method of ordering an item with a single click, whose activity spans 16 countries (including, Great Britain, China and India!). Thus, one of the great merits of this dictionary is certainly to have recognized the planetary proportions of IP law, and to have included so many terms from “other English-speaking jurisdictions… and in other languages too”, culled from both US, European and PCT patent law.

The entry just after “One-click” is “Open-Source”, an alternative way of licensing software which enables users to modify the source code and to “Copyleft” the modified versions of the original code ( Consequently, there is also an entry for “Copyleft” defined as a way of subverting existing Copyright laws which place restrictions on the distribution and modification of an existing copyrighted version of a work. Copylefted versions extend licensing rights to a version of a work that has been modified providing that the original is included with the modification. Thus, where a Copyright owner “reserves all rights”, a Copyleft owner “reserves some rights”, to the modifications and improvements, and in turn is required to license Copyleft versions.

BREXIT rules!! Even if many terms pertaining to European patent law are glossed in this wonderful dictionary, the term “European Patent” is actually glossed as: “A misnomer. There is really no such thing as a European Patent, although the national patents granted under the EPC are called by that name […]”. Of course, Peter Groves readily admits he is being a bit facetious (Personal communication dated Oct. 14, 2016). Still, with all due respect, this misnomer definition appears a bit misleading.  

European Patents definitely exist as unbundled documents, separate from a family of patents granted nationally, and conferring certain rights. As evidence, I am linking one such EP rogue patents, displaying just 3 designated contracting states (DE, FR and GB) for which yearly dues are computed. Incidentally, EP 0672994A1, titled Method and apparatus for reading an optically two-dimensional code was granted for the QR Code invention, winner in 2014 of the EPO award in the popular vote category. An award, that can be bestowed only upon an inventor who has been granted a EP patent for his or her invention. Thus, you will find thousands more such EP patents recorded in the Espacenet database.

Moving forward, Peter Groves’ Dictionary of Intellectual Property Law contains more than one most welcome inclusion. For example, the term “Traditional knowledge” (TK), defined as “The knowledge held by particular communities, especially indigenous peoples” is particularly welcome. And especially, since the rest of the definition for TK highlights such issues as the absence of a universal legal framework for protection, despite the emerging recognition of TK as intellectual property. Additionally, this definition  concludes with the much cited case of a Turmeric patent (US5401504),which together with an earlier Neem tree patent (EP0436257) were the first patents to be revoked (respectively in the US and Europe) on the grounds of prior art existing in the form of TK, and thus the absence of novelty.

In the fast and fluid domain of legislation, the 2011 publication date of this dictionary coincides with passage in the US of the largest US Federal Patent Law reform since the codification of US patent law into Title 35. The Leahy-Smith America Invents Act, whereby the US changed from the “first to invent” system to a “first to file system”, was signed by President Obama on September 16, 2011, effective for all patent applications filed in 2013 and onwards.  Thus, the entry on the “First to Invent” already needs some revisions, which is one of the reasons why the second edition of Groves’ Dictionary of Intellectual Property Law, is already a much-anticipated publication.

In the interim, this is an IP dictionary that also has the merit of being interesting for all the surprises that arise upon careful reading. For example, one eagerly looks for Peter Groves’ take on trade marks (two nouns) for which there is also a separate trademark (single noun) entry, covering US and UK variations in signifier. However, the real surprise arises in the separate entry for the verb trade mark (or trademark), which according to Groves must “logically be confined to applying a trade mark to goods” rather than “the act of registering a trade mark or even the mere act of applying to register for a trademark”.  This surprising restriction on the definition of the verb form of “trademark/trade mark” could send you flipping pages back for Grove’s take on the definition of “plain or literal meaning” per US regulations and/or British Rules, in the domain of IP law. However, you might only find such an entry for “plain or literal meaning” in the much anticipated second edition of this dictionary.

Grove’s Dictionary of IP Law is otherwise unrestricted to a particular country or continent in the choice of terms. Where else will you find the terms kokai (an unexamined Japanese patent application) and kokoku (an examined and allowed Japanese patent application), listed with in conjunction with Octrooi (Dutch for patent – or more generally, an official document conferring a privilege […]), the Russian term Samizdat (“literally, ‘self-published’ as was the frequent practice among dissidents of the former Soviet Union”);  the French saisie descriptive (“A court-order available in France, authorising a bailiff to collect evidence of the alleged infringement at the defendant’s premises by (for example) taking photographs […] or buying samples”), and the Spanish acronym MERCOSUR (Mercado Común del Sur, a free trade organization comprising the southernmost countries in South America)?

Grove’s dictionary pleases, instructs and surprises. Enjoy! 👠 

EP 0672994 - Method and apparatus for reading an optically two-dimensional code
EP0436257  Method for controlling fungi on plants by the aid of a hydrophobic extracted neem oil
US5401504 Use of turmeric in wound healing
Groves, P. Ipso Jure Blog
Groves, P. A Dictionary of Intellectual Property Law Blog
Groves, P. (Oct. 14, 2016) Personal email communication. RE: Dictionary of IP Law
Traditional Knowledge (TK) - WIPO 
USPTO - Leahy-Smith America Invents Act

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Oh, patents on the soles of your golf clubs too…!

Copyright © Françoise Herrmann

The sole of a golf club is:The bottom or underside of any type of golf club. It is where the club rests on the ground in playing position” (Pine Meadows). 

Indeed, this portion of your golf clubs is well-patented too! The EPO (European Patent Office) returned 3730 patents to the search terms “golf club sole” filed by such sports giants as Dunlop Sports Ltd, Yamaha Corp.and Nike Inc.

Undoubtedly, it helps if you are a golfer… because golf clubs speak a language of their own. For example, the “hosel” is the part where the golf club head (also called a “golfhead”) connects to the shaft. The “bounce” is the degree of roundness of the sole on wedges. The bounce helps when the ball is in sand or long grass as it prevents the club head from digging into the ground. As for golf wedges… these are “a subset of the iron family of golf clubs” designed for special situations… for example when the ball is lodged outside of the green, in a sand or grass "bunker" (the golf term for a pit(fall)).  As for the “green” in golf (also called the “putting green”), this is the area, oval or round, at the end of each golf hole (or unit of a golf course), at the center of which an actual opening or “hole” is located, where the ball must drop to mark the end of each hole (or unit). 

Evidently, many more such terms exist for each sort of golf club, their parts or functions, even if just 14 clubs are permitted in a golf bag, at any given time, for each game, according to golf rules set forth by the USGA (United States Golf Association).

Interestingly… the language of golf clubs in French is infused with borrowings. The term club is borrowed (and used in the masculine), generating têtes de clubs for club heads.  The term wedge is borrowed (also imported as a masculine term). Alternatively, the term cocheur for wedge is used in Quebec, with all manner of variations such as cocheur intermédiare (gap wedge), cocheur de lob (lob wedge), cocheur d’allée (pitching wedge) and cocheur de sable (sand wedge) (Glossare GDT). 

However, the sole of the club head translates to French directly without borrowing, as it is called a semelle, and similarly the toe or heel of the (club head) sole are called pointe or talon, so that both English and French draw on foot and shoe terminology for designating the various parts of a golf club….

In terms of (club) head and sole patents, much more is included in golf clubs than meets the eye. The heads of golf clubs are weighted for various biomechanical reasons, such as swing speed and feel, or ball trajectory and distance. Thus, the ways to weight a golf head might be patented. For example the Dunlop Corp. patent application US2016361612, titled Golf Club Head, filed 12-15-2016, is a club head weighting patent.

Golf clubs, designated woods (because they used to be made of wood), irons (because they are made of metal) or hybrids (because they combine woods head design and iron shaft length), are now made of metal or composite materials such as carbon fiber polymers, all of which might be patented relative to the physics and biomechanical properties of golf. For example, the Dunlop Corp patent application US2016354649 titled Iron-type golf club head, filed 12-08-2016, is a golf club-head materials patent, relative to promoting “high rebound performance in the central region as well as in a sole-side region of the club face”.  

Likewise, the shape of golf club heads (e.g.; the loft and lie angles – the angle of the club face, and how the club lies on the ground) as well as their particular connection to the shaft and its variable length, are all patentable -- in connection to the physics of striking and managing the trajectory of a ball, and to the level of the golfer’s skill at swinging (to strike the ball). The following Nike patent application US2016346630 titled Golf club head with polymeric hosel,  filed 12-01-2016, relates to hosel material relative to the club’s moment of inertia affecting the club head’s forgiveness, meaning relative to the structural resilience of the club head to repeated impact with the ball, and between the ground and the club.

The following recent Nike golf club head patent application - US2016354661, titled Golf Club Head or Other Ball Device Having Reinforced Sole Striking, filed on 12-08-2016, also discloses an invention concerned with the physics and biomechanics of golf, in particular, striking resonance and vibration. Indeed, striking resonance is known to dampen the velocity and energy transferred upon impact to the ball. Resonance and vibration are also known to impact the feel of a swing, and to sometimes even cause discomfort. Thus, the purpose of this invention is to improve the resonance and vibration of the golf club head upon impact with the ball, and consequently to increase speed and distance of the ball, as well as the golfer's comfort. 

Below, a figure drawing, extracted from US2016354661, of the triangular truss device inserted inside a wood-type golf club head to control resonance. 

So, now... do you speak golf clubs? 👠

Glossary - Pine Meadows Golf Clubs
Terminologie du golf (Extraite du Grand Dictionnaire Terminologique  de l’Office de la Langue française du Québec – Canada)
USGA - United States Golfing Association
Wikipedia – Wedge (golf)  - Club (golf)
Wikipedia – Hybrid (golf)
Wikipedia - Wood (golf)

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Santa Baby redux!

Copyright © Françoise Herrmann

The following Xmas message was delivered at the New Zealand Parliament, earlier this month, by New Zealand Maori Party co-leaders Marama Fox and Te Ururoa Flavell, playing the ukulele.

In Marama Fox’s own comment: “There is often a lot of doom and gloom in parliament. We wanted to enlighten everyone with a little vibrancy”.  Plus, as you can see, there is also a real message in this take on the American, Eartha Mae Kitt, 1950's classic, Santa Baby -- about poverty, homelessness, and children, to whom the future belongs, not to mention the call for joining the Maori Party!

In any event, you might all agree that Marama Fox has a great voice!

Merry Xmas everyone

Eartha Mae Kitt - Original Santa Baby song (1953)
Marama Fox and Te Ururoa Flavell take on Santa Baby (Dec. 14, 2016)
Marama Fox interview at Radio NZ Checkpoint

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

NASA's eye-poppin' global warming CO2 emissions

Copyright © Françoise Herrmann

 The following video animation from NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center shows the accelerated life-cycle of global warming CO2 greenhouse gas emissions, during a year, from Sept. 1, 2014 to Aug. 31, 2015. 

The NASA Goddard Earth Observing System Model - 5 (GEOS-5)  simulation data was combined with live observations and measurements collected by the NASA Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2 (OCO-2) satellite, in a process called "data assimilation" to provide a better understanding of  carbon flux - that is, the sorts of exchanges occurring between CO2 emissions and the absorption taking place on land and in the oceans. The OCO-2 satellite returned about 100,000 CO2 estimates, daily from the Earth to inform the modeling process.

As you can see the red and purple-colored CO2 emissions are concentrated in the Northern hemisphere, and they change during the year as about 50% of CO2 greenhouse gas emissions are absorbed through photosynthesis during the summer and by ocean sinks. 

Scientists are seeking to answer such questions as which ecosystems sink CO2 emissions, and most importantly whether the rate of absorption on-land and in the ocean will remain constant, or eventually saturate, considering rates of increased CO2 emissions arising primarily from burning fossil fuels for energy. 

NASA - OCO-2 and GEOS team up to produce a new view of carbon dioxide
NASA - Eye-popping view of CO2, critical step for carbon-cyle science

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Oh, patents! Commercial drones

Copyright © Françoise Herrmann

Imagine all your Amazon and postal service packages delivered by drone!

Although long lines at the post office, at this festive time of the year, do not appear to be the primary reason for the piloting and testing of drone deliveries carried out separately, both by the French postal service in France, and Amazon in the UK, this might well be what’s in store for the future. 

Rather, it is both the costs and difficulty of accessing remote locations that prompted developments and research in this domain for the French postal service. And in the UK, for Amazon, it looks like speed of service might be part of the equation too, since Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos tweeted: “13-minutes - click to delivery time” following successful delivery of  popcorn and an Amazon Fire tablet, from the Amazon fulfillment center, to the first drone-delivery customer, located 2 miles away. (WSJ, Wells & Stevens, 12/2016)

Amazon commercial drones are located at the Amazon Cambridge fulfillment center in the UK. They are permitted to operate in the airspace at 400 feet, during the daytime only, to avoid collisions with aircrafts. They are completely autonomous devices, driven by GPS, and can carry a payload of 5lbs. Amazon is testing in the UK, because it could not secure authorization to use the US airspace. (BBC)

Likewise, in France, the French postal service has begun weekly service in the remote and mountainous location of the southwestern Var region after securing permission from civil aviation authorities to operate in the airspace of that region. The French postal service drones are operated by the DPDgroup. They carry payloads up to 6 lbs, at a speed of 30 km/hour with a maximum range of 20 km. (Le FigaroLe Monde - J.M. Normand 12/2016)

Drone deliveries are highly patented technologies. The following are a few of these patents ranging from the ADLPs (Aerial drone landing pads), to the computerized systems for managing drone delivery cycles:
  • WO2016196093 (A1) 2016-12-08 - Systems, methods, and apparatuses for managing aerial drone parcel transfers  
  • US2016335898 (A1) 2016-11-17 - Automated drone management system
  • WO2016094067 (A1) 2016-06-16 - Drone docking station and delivery system
  • GB2537122 (A) 2016-10-12 - Automated drone package receiver module
  • US2015248640 (A1) 2015-09-03 - 3D model and beacon for automatic delivery of goods
  • US2014316243 (A1) 2014-10-23 - Systems and techniques for delivery and medical support
  • US2016101874 (A1) 2016-04-14 - Drone receiving systems and methods
  • US2016033966 (A1) 2016-02-04 - System and method for controlling drone delivery or pick up during a delivery or pick up phase of drone operation
  • US2016068264 (A1) 2016-03-10 Methods, Systems and Devices for Delivery Drone Security 

Amazon makes first drone delivery – Dec. 14 (BBC)
Amazon conducts first commercial drone delivery (WSJ, Wells & Stevens, Dec. 14, 2016)
In major step for drone delivery, amazon flies package to customer in the England
Premiers clients pour les drones d'Amazon et de la Poste - Le Monde 15 déc. 2016 - J.M. Normand

Friday, December 16, 2016

Ora-ïto INPI 2016 Innovation Trophy

Copyright © Françoise Herrmann

Each of the INPI 2016 Innovation Trophy winners received the following Ora-ïto designed trophy: 


INPI 2016 Innovation trophies – The winners!

Copyright © Françoise Herrmann

The winners of the 2016 INPI Innovation trophies in the four categories of Trademark, Patents, Research and Design, are the following:
  • Obut®, a pétanque ball company in the Trademark category.  
  • Wandercraft, a firm designing robotic exoskeletons for wheelchair users, striving to create ordinary lives for extraordinary people, in the Patent category. 
  • LAPHIA (Laser and Photonics in Aquitaine) an interdisciplinary cluster of research, operating with funds from the University of Bordeaux, bringing together multidisciplinary teams focused on laser and high energy physics, photonics and materials, and innovative imaging, in the Research category.
  • Procédés Chénela firm creating interior design solutions made of paper, with a more than 100-year old history, dating back to 1896, in the Design category.

The lucky winners not only received an Ora-ïto designed trophy. They were also treated to 25 years of macaron dessert creations, celebrating the 25th annual award of the INPI Innovation Trophies, offered by the master pastry-chef and President of the Jury Pierre Hermé.

As for the People’s Choice Trophy, where you might have cast a vote, results remain undisclosed.👠

INPI 2016 Innovation Trophy Awards
Pierre Hermé
Procédés Chénel

Friday, December 9, 2016

Global warming and clean air (Paris)

Copyright © Françoise Herrmann

This week, Paris recorded the worse air quality in 10 years with a spike in airborne pollution of particles measuring less than 10 microns (PM10) equal to  80 ɥg/m(Willshire, 2016 The Guardian) 

French air quality norms are set to PM10 < 50 ɥg/m3 (daily mean) with an alert threshold of 80 ɥg/m(AirParif). 

As a result, public transportation in Paris is operating free of charge, and an odd/even car use ban. similar to that which operates in New Delhi, was implemented to combat air pollution, under virtually windless conditions.

 This means that only cars with odd license plates could operate on Wednesday, Dec. 7, 2016, whereas only cars with even license plates could operate on Thursday, Dec. 8, 2017. Today, the car use ban is still effective with only odd license plate vehicles allowed to operate (carpool, emergency vehicles, hybrids and EV excluded). (Sharman, 2016 The Independent). And the same sort of ban has been implemented in the city of Lyon. 

The spike in Paris air pollution was determined due to a combination of factors: household heating, transportation exhaust and windless weather conditions. 

According to The World Health Organization (WHO) :

Ambient (outdoor air pollution) in both cities and rural areas was estimated to cause 3 million premature deaths worldwide per year in 2012; this mortality is due to exposure to small particulate matter of 10 microns or less in diameter (PM10), which cause cardiovascular and respiratory disease, and cancers

Airparif – French Air quality standards
Sharman, J (Dec. 8, 2016) Paris makes all public transport free in battle against 'worst air pollution for 10 years – The Independent
 Van Eeckhout, L.  (Dec. 8, 2016) Qualité de l’air : de nouvelles limites d’émissions polluantes dans l’Union européenne – Le Monde
WHO – Fact Sheet:   Ambient (outdoor) air quality and health
Willshire, K. (Dec. 7, 2016) Paris bans cars for second day running as pollution chokes city - The Guardian 

Saturday, December 3, 2016

Global warming and clean air (New Delhi)

Copyright © Françoise Herrmann 

And you thought that Los Angeles smog was bad! Here is what the worse air pollution on earth looks like in New Delhi.

 On Nov. 1, 2016, the airborne pollution of particles measuring less than 2.5 microns (PM2.5­ particulate matter < 2.5 microns) measured 1.2 ppm (or 1200 ɥg/m3 - micrograms per cubic meter of air), that is, 120 times more than the annual mean threshold (PM2.5­  = 10 ɥg/m3) set by the World Health organization for protecting public health, or close to 50 times more than the 24-hour mean average of 25 ɥg/m3 set by WHO for protection public health (WHO, 2005, p. 8).

Similarly, in comparison, the US EPA National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) sets the threshold level of PM­2.5­ at 12 and 15 ɥg/m3 mean average for 3 years, respectively for primary and secondary air standards. Primary air standards are set to protect public health, including vulnerable populations such as the elderly, children and asthmatics. Secondary air standards are set to protect public welfare, including “protection against decreased visibility and damage to animals, crops, vegetation and buildings.” (US NAAQS)

For a 24 hour period, the EPA NAAQS for PM2.5­ is set at 35 ɥg/m3, for both primary and secondary air standards, averaged over three years. Thus, in New Delhi, on Nov 1, 2016, the air quality was about 35 times too dangerous even for buildings and vegetation, according to the EPA NAAQS standards. (US NAAQS)

And none of this is measuring any other pollutants, considered critical air quality criteria both by the US EPA NAAQS, and the WHO Air Quality Guidelines, such as levels of ozone (O3), sulphur dioxide (SO2), carbon monoxide (CO), lead (Pb) and nitrogen dioxide (NO2). 

Nor does the particulate matter measurements include those “well-mixed” GHG gasses and emissions such as: “carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), nitrous oxide (N2O), hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), perfluorocarbons (PFCs), and sulfur hexafluoride (SF6)incorporated in Section 202(a) of the Clean Air Act by the US Administration on Dec. 7, 2009, as “Endangerment and Cause or Contribute Findings” deemed threatening to the public health and welfare of current and future generations (Clean Air Act, Section 202(a), and Technical Report in support of the Findings). 👠

EPA – Table NAAQS – National Ambient Air Quality Standards
US Clean Air Act (1990)
WHO Air quality Standards (2005 – English)
US Clean Air Act - Endangerment and Cause or Contribute Findings for Greenhouse Gases under the Section 202(a) of the Clean Air Act
Technical support for the findings on GHG appended to the Clean Air Act on Dec. 7, 2009

Friday, December 2, 2016

Green gone grey post Nov. 2016 US elections?

Copyright © Françoise Herrmann

The UNFCCC - COP22 (Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change), held this year in Marrakesh, Morocco, ended on Nov. 7, 2016, just one day before voters elected Mr. Trump as the 45th President of the United States.

During the presidential campaign, President-elect Donald Trump expressed the following position and opinions about climate change:
“I’m not a big believer in man made climate change. There could be some impact, but I don’t believe it’s a devastating impact … I would say that it goes up, it goes down, and I think it’s very much like this over the years. We’ll see what happens. I mean, we’ll see what happens. Maybe you and I – even you, as young as you are – you won’t be around to see. But certainly, climate has changed. You know, they used to call it global warming. They’ve had many different – they call it extreme weather. They always change the name to encapsulate everything.” interview [Miami Herald, 8/11/16]
“This very expensive GLOBAL WARMING bullshit has got to stop. Our planet is freezing, record low temps, and our GW scientists are stuck in ice.” [Donald Trump Twitter, 1/1/14]
“It's really cold outside, they are calling it a major freeze, weeks ahead of normal. Man, we could use a big fat dose of global warming!” [Donald Trump Twitter, 10/19/15]
“The concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive.” [Donald Trump Twitter, 11/6/12]
[Quotes extracted from: League of conservation voters (Oct. 2016) – In their own words – 2016 Presidential candidates on climate change ]

Does this mean that the US is slated to become color-blind, and that the new color green is going to be grey, like the color of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, for the next 4 years? Is this for real?

According to Noam Chomsky, in response to a question on the long-term consequences of a Trump administration:
 “First we have to ask if he means what he is saying... And if he does, then not only we, but the human species is in very deep trouble.”  (Chomsky, 2016)
Indeed… the above-cited President-elect electoral campaign remarks and opinions are not only disturbing, they are backed by an even more unsettling policy agenda which includes such items as: 1. a pledge to revive the US coal industry; 2. a vision of the US as a leader in fossil fuel production with an expansion of both onshore and offshore drilling and, 3. a plan to dismantle, or greatly cut back on the activities of the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). All of which arises in direct and complete opposition to internationally binding climate change decisions and agreements. First, beginning in 1994, with the ratification, and quasi-universal acceptance of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), an agreement whose essential goal is to prevent “dangerous human interference with the climate” and that brought together 197 countries party to the Convention.  Secondly, the Kyoto Protocol in 1997 which set internationally binding emissions reduction targets for all the 197 countries party to the UNFCCC.  And finally, in stark denial of the UNFCCC – COP21 - Paris Agreement, ratified on Dec. 12, 2015, and now in force, 113 countries of the 197 Parties to the UNFCCC having already signed the agreement which calls for keeping the rise in global temperatures this century down to less than 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels, and if possible even down to 1.5 degrees Celsius.

As a result of such denial, responses to the new grey color of climate change have ranged from raw despair, fear and anger on the part of climate change activists, to a more tempered, firm and hopeful response on the part of scientists and current climate change policy makers, who complacently believe that their indisputable data on climate change and global warming will ultimately be recognized --once the new administration is in place.

In other words, and as Chomsky put it, activists definitely believe that the President-elect “means what he says” and that the US is on a new path to opt out of all previous international climate change agreements, whereas scientists and climate change policymakers think the President-elect “can’t possibly be meaning what he says”, considering the amount irrefutable data on global warming, produced by such widely recognized and reputable institutions as: the US EPA (Environmental Protection Agency), The World Meteorological Organization, the CNRN - Centre national de recherches météorologiques (France), Environment and Climate change Canada, the UK Met Office, plus many more.

As Daniel Kammen, science envoy for the U.S. State Department, Professor of Energy at the University of California at Berkeley, has responded:
“To be a climate denier in 2016 is to simply ignore science. A businessman is supposed to be flexible and thoughtful about opportunity. Clean energy is an economic boom, and it’s a boom for equity around the planet. And to turn your back on that is to put ideology over simple, good clean energy business and clean energy jobs.” (Democracy Now!, Nov. 15, 2016)
So, at the end of the day, do we, translators, all update our term bases with the term “grey” instead of “green” in reference to technology and patents that seek to both reduce global warming and/or mitigate its effects?

Well, it is perhaps too early to tell, since the US has just entered the transition period between administrations, before the January 20th, 2017 inauguration day. What is certain, however, is that the President-elect’s opinions and remarks are both misguided and the reflection of a true misunderstanding of global warming and climate change. 

Such statements as: “This very expensive GLOBAL WARMING bullshit has got to stop. Our planet is freezing, record low temps, and our GW scientists are stuck in ice” uncover several important misconceptions of global warming, climate change and the science that drives the interpretation of planetary temperature.  

First, scientists understand climate change as a result of global-warming, and not vice versa. Scientists understand global warming as a phenomenon arising out of the accumulation of greenhouse gases (GHG) such as carbon dioxide (CO2). In other words, it is not the weather that is responsible for global warming, it is our fossil-fuel and heavy emissions industrial activity, and more particularly the industrial activity of the Northern Hemisphere, that is assumed responsible for the accumulation of GHG, which in turn has steadily augmented the temperature of the planet. A record streak of freezing temperatures in New York City, Paris or Vienna will not “cool” our planet, just as a record heat wave in Detroit, Chicago or Southern Europe will not “increase the temperature” of our planet. These exceptional climate events are the consequences, not the cause of global warming, especially when recorded as increasingly frequent phenomena.

The following glossary entry on “Global Warming” extracted from the EPA Student’s guide to Global Warming clearly explains the relationship between global warming and climate change (italics mine):
Global warming: An increase in temperature near the surface of the Earth. Global warming has occurred in the distant past as the result of natural causes. However, the term is most often used to refer to recent and ongoing warming caused by people's activities. Global warming leads to a bigger set of changes referred to as global climate change.  
Secondly, a warmer planet does not mean just warmer weather, it means an increase in the frequency of extreme weather and catastrophic weather events, such as for example, an increase in both the number and intensity of hurricanes arising from the increase in ocean temperature; a record number of tornados, an increase in rainfall and floods by almost 20% in the last century, and an increase in snowfall and resulting damages, pointing to “weather gone-crazy” in the Northern Hemisphere, and to the disappearance of lakes and increased droughts in the non-industrialized Southern Hemisphere generating increased suffering from the resulting shortages of both food and water supplies. However, these points are truly nothing new. This is a message that was already delivered loudly and very clearly in 2006 by Former Vice-President Al Gore in the book and non-fiction documentary titled An inconvenient truth: The planetary emergency of global warming and what we can do about it.

In fact, this message was powerful enough to generate a quasi-universal response, consolidating the action of 197 countries in the fight against global warming and its consequences (Lapowski, 2016). All of which makes the President-elect's remarks all the more disconcerting.

The hope then, as far as translators and interpreters are concerned, is that we might be commissioned to build more communication bridges in educational campaigns designed to gain the support of “climate change deniers”, whose loudest and winning representative is about to take the highest office.

 If the new grey color of green is just a misconception, then there is still a place for reason, and for hope. Indeed, if President-elect Donald Trump really meant what he said when he asserted:
“I think that clean air is a pressing problem. You want to have clean air, clean water. That's very important to me, and I've won many environmental awards. I am not a believer in climate change,’ [Politico, 9/24/15 in League of Conservation Voters, 2016]
then it won’t be too difficult to reconcile the contradiction expressed above, so that green, clean and renewable energy remains the true color of climate change and the fight against global warming. 👠

Al Gore (website)
Chomsky, n. (2016) If Trump becomes president (YouTube recording)
CNRM - Centre national de recherches météorologiques (France)
 Democracy now! (Nov 15, 2016) U.S. State Dept. Science Envoy on Trump's Climate Denialism & Why Sanders Could Have Beaten Him
Environment and Climate Change Canada
EPA-  Environmental Protection Agency - EPA
EPA – Student’s Guide to Global Climate change
Gore, A. (2006) An inconvenient Truth: the Planetary Emergency of global Warming and what we can do about it. New York, NY: Rodale.    
Lapowski, I.  (2016) Ten years after An Inconvenient Truth, Al Gore may actually be winning.
League of Conservation Voters (Oct. 2016) – In their own words – 2016  Presidential candidates on climate change 
The World Meteorological Organization
UK Met Office