Global Climate Change: is it worth brushing off?

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Poet wrote: Plant trees.

Poet wrote:

Plant trees. Plant LOTS of trees.

Buy land like the Nature Conservancy does, make it non-profit or religious land, and plant LOTS of trees. Or, don't buy land, just guerilla plant - a wide variety. Be the Johnny Treeseeds of the new age.

Trees help bring rainfall, trees cool the earth's surface temperature while capturing energy for growth and carbon sequestration. Plant a diversity of trees. Trees help stop desertification. Trees and plants grow roots and help combat soil erosion. Spanish moss sequester nitrogen from the atmosphere and make it available for plants.

Signing cap and trade system or limits on carbon like with the Kyoto Treaty only makes manufacturing more expensive in America, so companies then go to Brazil and China and Mexico and export the polluting there, then the produced goods get imported back here.

Brazil and China and Mexico and a hundred other countries are happy to join in the Kyoto protocols because they will then get additional indirect subsidies (while America and Europe get penalized) to manufacture more goods. We essentially outsource our pollution with our jobs - it is useless and silly and quickens the economic suicide that occurs when businesses seek ever lower labor costs and the ability to pollute water, air, earth, living things, and people without cost or consequences.

But with trees, plant more. Plant much, much more. Carpet bomb the U.S. with diverse cultures of seedlings. Breed for  the drought-tolerate, cold tolerate, heat tolerant varieties that have multiple uses. Layer it permaculture style so there is a diversity of edible plant life (berries, wild grapes, figs, etc.) and wildlife to harvest.

Turn North America into a megaforest. Turn Europe back into a megaforest. Put the people back onto the land and they will need less money, they will walk more to gather food and go places. They will carry guns and hunt. Breed the buffalo for the plains, and the auroch and the gaur for the swamps, the water buffalo for the swamps, and the dromedaries for the desert. Bring the cougars and leopards. Bring the wild horses for people to "break in" and ride.. Let our people be strong and virile everyday hunter-farmer-warriors once again, living by spear and bow and arrow and rifle, instead of by the keyboard or push-button or steering wheel.

Poet

Wow, really cool idea!

A step towards new tribalism!

John

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Poet wrote: Plant trees.

Poet wrote:

Plant trees. Plant LOTS of trees.

Buy land like the Nature Conservancy does, make it non-profit or religious land, and plant LOTS of trees. Or, don't buy land, just guerilla plant - a wide variety. Be the Johnny Treeseeds of the new age.

Trees help bring rainfall, trees cool the earth's surface temperature while capturing energy for growth and carbon sequestration. Plant a diversity of trees. Trees help stop desertification. Trees and plants grow roots and help combat soil erosion. Spanish moss sequester nitrogen from the atmosphere and make it available for plants.

Signing cap and trade system or limits on carbon like with the Kyoto Treaty only makes manufacturing more expensive in America, so companies then go to Brazil and China and Mexico and export the polluting there, then the produced goods get imported back here.

Brazil and China and Mexico and a hundred other countries are happy to join in the Kyoto protocols because they will then get additional indirect subsidies (while America and Europe get penalized) to manufacture more goods. We essentially outsource our pollution with our jobs - it is useless and silly and quickens the economic suicide that occurs when businesses seek ever lower labor costs and the ability to pollute water, air, earth, living things, and people without cost or consequences.

But with trees, plant more. Plant much, much more. Carpet bomb the U.S. with diverse cultures of seedlings. Breed for  the drought-tolerate, cold tolerate, heat tolerant varieties that have multiple uses. Layer it permaculture style so there is a diversity of edible plant life (berries, wild grapes, figs, etc.) and wildlife to harvest.

Turn North America into a megaforest. Turn Europe back into a megaforest. Put the people back onto the land and they will need less money, they will walk more to gather food and go places. They will carry guns and hunt. Breed the buffalo for the plains, and the auroch and the gaur for the swamps, the water buffalo for the swamps, and the dromedaries for the desert. Bring the cougars and leopards. Bring the wild horses for people to "break in" and ride.. Let our people be strong and virile everyday hunter-farmer-warriors once again, living by spear and bow and arrow and rifle, instead of by the keyboard or push-button or steering wheel.

Poet

Poet,

You are right about the trees.  If the faux environmental activists were really concerned about the planet, they would be pushing for a national initiative to promote an ongoing version of National Arbor Day on steroids.  Buy they're not and they won't.  Collapse by Jared Diamond makes a convincing case for the importance of trees just as you have described.  Unfortunately, the TPTB don't want us independent, they don't want us to be able to feed ourselves, and they don't want us to be healthy.  That would take away their power and give power to the people and that's not going to happen, given the present trends.  We're becoming more like the fat humans in Wall-E than the crowds in V for Vendetta.  And look at phony environmentalists like "do as I say, not as I do" Al Gore, Laurie David, and others.  They make me want to puke.     

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forests

The great eastern forest in the US that was pretty much clear cut at one time has re-emerged to a significant degree.  Of course, it isn't as ecologically intact as the primordial forest was, but in terms of carbon sequestration, erosion protection and providing shelter for many species, its doing a pretty good job.  Further west, in the Great Plains and parts of the desert/mountain west there were never (in the past couple millenia) forests to speak of.  The prairie states were dominated by grasses that, over eons, built up deep fertile topsoil (carbon sequestration) and should be restored for that purpose, not planted in trees.  Much of the topsoil that was there when the conestogas headed west is now in the Gulf of Mexico, along with innumerable tons of fertilizers and pesticides.  My point is, restore the land to the purposes for which it is best suited, don't just willy-nilly plant trees. 

Doug

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One wee

One wee question.......

What population do you believe the current area of the USA would be able to be sustained in that environment?

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What A Way To Go: Life At The End Of Empire

Gyro',

At a guess, I'd say a (former) American combined population estimate of more or less roughly 50 million at the very best if lucky?

The [dis-] ingeniousness of peak oil will see to this equation, working its magic more openly within the decade against a back-drop in an escalation of war in perpetuity, famine, drought, and the conciliatory nature of the financial system continuing to haemorrhage unsustainable investment and manufacture to the east.

A reduction of what in real world terms was the very short-term apparent wealth ownership - as a loan (or theft, dependent on your point of view) - in the grand celestial scheme of things.

The American Empire will break up into a series of about seven to ten fragmented social pockets, modelled similarly on present day third world nations in the long run, while many will continue to scratch their heads over what short cut they can fashion while they and their neighbours learn from a long forgotten sensation called starvation, is my guess.

Frankly, America will become the shell of its formative self economically.

It'll be utterly delicious - splendid in many respects - for the planet in spinning six billion or so of us off over about a century, indirectly recreating ecological harmony again over time. Of course, for humanity, it's against the calamity of this great die-off event we're all at the very nadir of.

But after all, Earth has been here for quite a few billion years in kicking one predator after another off of it. And humanity really is just a tiny insignificant little inconsequential blip in all of the great grand scheme of such things

Of course, this is only my opinion, for what it is worth.

I can see a great benefit with Americas destruction in present day terms, but you can never quite tell what grand ideas in the human psyche are in process of building yet another brand-new empire elsewhere, modelled on this old one about to go down the tubes.

All I can say is that I'd best go see the Great Barrier Reef real quick, so as to see it with my own eyes for what could well be the very last time.

My Grand kids might still not believe such beauty existed, but at least I can say my goodbyes to the natural beauty of this fading world, whose population doubled in my own lifetime, modelled on a city-scape of concrete; drinking my very own urine over and over and over again - eating animal excrement in hamburger meat - while being told I'm living in a model of advanced civilization, growing man-boobs from run-off chemicals and antibiotics, and having my children farmed in test-tubes for want of a sperm count.

Such successes in first living off the back of, learning from, then living as a captive through the scientific imperative, there was surely the existence of Astro Turf organisations well before Astro Turf had ever been invented, with the formative propagandised linear ancestry of the Koch brothers going on back beyond antiquity to the very early attempts at modelling the sands of time.

Since we're running out that commodity - time, not sand - I reckon catching up on this film below may be time well spent to motivate for many. Believe me when I say that I have a great deal less time here than most for naval gazing and procrastination : -

What A Way To Go: Life At The End Of Empire

~ VF ~

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gyrogearloose wrote: One wee

gyrogearloose wrote:

One wee question.......

What population do you believe the current area of the USA would be able to be sustained in that environment?

Could you clarify what you mean by "that environment?"

Doug

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Enough Food?

gyrogearloose wrote:

One wee question.......

What population do you believe the current area of the USA would be able to be sustained in that environment?

Not sure what environment you're talking about.

Depends on how intensely and skilled the arable land is farmed via permaculture methods. It is possible to raise plants and animals for food year-round for a family on a several fertile acres.

This paper indicate that in Asia, the average farm size has been something less than 1 hectare (less than 2.5 acres) since the 1930s until now, while in Europe, the average farm size was less than 3 to 4 hectares ( 7 to 10 acres) in the same time period. Before the 19th century, a significant number of farms took up about 1 to 3 hectares.

http://www.sussex.ac.uk/Units/PRU/farm_size.pdf

There are currently some 470 million arable acres in the U.S. So it would be possible to raise enough food under intensive, permaculture means to feed all Americans. Just not sure everyone would be happy with the variety and the hard work involved.

And of course the landowners. Don't forget about the landowners and their ownership of land. Right now, in some states in the U.S., pastureland can be rented for $12 to $25 per acre per month. The land itself can cost anywhere from $1,500 to $6,000 up per acre.

Poet

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Arable acres

Poet

Quote:

There are currently some 470 million arable acres in the U.S. So it would be possible to raise enough food under intensive, permaculture means to feed all Americans. Just not sure everyone would be happy with the variety and the hard work involved.

But what will be displaced by the development of those acres?
Further development might solve the food crisis, but how about the environmental impacts? 
Our "solutions" are notorious for creating more problems.

Just some thoughts.
Cheers,
Aaron

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Alpha Mike

Alpha Mike wrote:

Poet

Quote:

There are currently some 470 million arable acres in the U.S. So it would be possible to raise enough food under intensive, permaculture means to feed all Americans. Just not sure everyone would be happy with the variety and the hard work involved.

But what will be displaced by the development of those acres?
Further development might solve the food crisis, but how about the environmental impacts? 
Our "solutions" are notorious for creating more problems.

Just some thoughts.
Cheers,
Aaron

Thanks, Aaron.

I was just giving an example of theoretical feasibility. The very next paragraph, I did mention that such a "solution' (Link: Plant Trees) obviously would have to consider all the landowners out there, which would be a practical concern that likely won't ever be met.

Poet

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 The fair and balanced

The fair-and-balanced corporate shill propaganda TV station reports on the insidious AGW message in a Sponge Bob episode.


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Re: Global Climate Change: is it worth brushing off?

I offer you a ride in my car. Over 95 % of car safety experts will tell you that you will either die or be seriously injured if you come for a ride. So will you take up my offer?

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what?

mwahren wrote:

I offer you a ride in my car. Over 95 % of car safety experts will tell you that you will either die or be seriously injured if you come for a ride. So will you take up my offer?

What???

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what?

mwahren wrote:

I offer you a ride in my car. Over 95 % of car safety experts will tell you that you will either die or be seriously injured if you come for a ride. So will you take up my offer?

What???

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what?

jturbo68 wrote:

mwahren wrote:

I offer you a ride in my car. Over 95 % of car safety experts will tell you that you will either die or be seriously injured if you come for a ride. So will you take up my offer?

What???

Only two watts today...?  Not that bright?

Mike

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 mwahren wrote:I offer you

mwahren wrote:
I offer you a ride in my car. Over 95 % of car safety experts will tell you that you will either die or be seriously injured if you come for a ride. So will you take up my offer?

So what are you planning to do, drive the wrong way on the Taconic Parkway at 100 mph after drinking a few beers?

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wrong way go back

r wrote:

mwahren wrote:
I offer you a ride in my car. Over 95 % of car safety experts will tell you that you will either die or be seriously injured if you come for a ride. So will you take up my offer?

So what are you planning to do, drive the wrong way on the Taconic Parkway at 100 mph after drinking a few beers?

Wow what a great metaphor for what's happening....

Mike

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The environment described in

The environment described in the post I was replying to.......

"Turn North America into a megaforest. Turn Europe back into a megaforest. Put the people back onto the land......."

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Poet "There are currently

Poet

"There are currently some 470 million arable acres in the U.S. So it would be possible to raise enough food under intensive, permaculture means to feed all Americans. Just not sure everyone would be happy with the variety and the hard work involved."

Dammthematrix goes on about permaculture and how nothing is alowed to leave the land....

Currently farms are a strip mine for a range of minerals, and on our farm the produce mainly disapeared overseas.

Even if it did not go overseas, it would go to town, to be eaten there and the minerals flushed down the toliet and out to sea.

We made up the loss by applying fertalizer. ( refilling the mine so to speak )

To be long term sustainable and not to rely on exaustable supplies of minerals like phosperous, all the minerals extracted from our land would need to be returned to the land. Our own consumption is easy. the stuff sent to town is harder. we would need our portion of the waste to be returned to our land. all this leads to needing a significant transport system which needs......  opps back into the matrix we go.

Cheers Hamish

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Believers Getting Desperate

A scene from Mars Attacks!

Aliens may destroy humanity to protect other civilisations, say scientists

Rising greenhouse emissions could tip off aliens that we are a rapidly expanding threat, warns a report

http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2011/aug/18/aliens-destroy-humanity-protect-civilisations

NASA's new theme song

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Interesting Thought, But Unlikely

GregRoberts

It's unlikely that aliens - if they exist and are aware of us and capable of genocide - would destroy humanity to protect other civilizations at this stage.

We can't even get out past our own moon at this point. If they knew of us, they'd realize that we're already doing two things that will make climbing out of the gravity well and populating even our own solar system a near-impossible task: global warming and peak oil/resources.

Rising greenhouse emissions would likely signal to them that we're boiling frogs about to stew in a pot of our own making. Peak oil/resources will likely see us warring with one another over dwindling resources, as well as prevent us from being able to truly mount a solar system colonization and resource mining effort.

They could intervene to save the dolphins, elephants, whales, and bonobos though - or just our entire bio-diverse, life-rich planet. Assuming they cared.

Poet

gregroberts wrote:

Aliens may destroy humanity to protect other civilisations, say scientists

Rising greenhouse emissions could tip off aliens that we are a rapidly expanding threat, warns a report

http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2011/aug/18/aliens-destroy-humanity-protect-civilisations

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Scientific explanation

I stumbled across this post on the Open Mind blog:

http://tamino.wordpress.com/2011/08/12/learning-from-bastardis-mistakes/

Its a fairly easy to read explanation and depiction of the data by a scientist in response to a TV weatherman named Joe Bastardi.  Apparently he's something of a celebrity on the denialist circuit.

And here's a video of a presentation by Dr. Scott Denning, an actual atmospheric scientist at Colorado State U, made at the annual sham climate change conference put on by the Heartland Institute, a so-called think tank, the only recent purpose of which is to carry the fossil fuel industry's water in the climate change debate.  Their past fame came from carrying the tobacco industry's water in the smoking debate.  Anyway, its  an interesting presentation at an unlikely forum.

Doug

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Pragmatic Question

I remember seeing some graphs a few years back that showed the frequency distribution of outgoing radiation from Venus, Mars, and Jupiter. The infrared frequencies were shifting slightly higher, implying global warming was occurring on these planets as well. I just spent 2 hours searching for that graph, but to no avail.

That piece led me to believe that solar energy or cosmic rays or some other phenomenon that is coincident to our solar system is having an effect on Earth as well. Now, I'm reading that solar cycle 24 is expected to peak in May 2013 with a below average number of sunspots. http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2009/29may_noaaprediction/ You can see from the following figure that we have experienced increased sunspot activity from about 1930 onward.

Sunspots appear dark because they emit higher energy radiation in frequencies that aren't visible. Is it just a coincidence that we've had much higher than normal sunspot activity coinciding with global warming? Note the Maunder Minimum occurred just after 1640 and ended just before 1720. Here is a graph from wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Little_Ice_Age) that shows reconstructed temperatures for the last 2 millenia. Note the current increase in temperatures since about 1950 and the colder periods from mid millenium to 1950.

File:2000 Year Temperature Comparison.png

To be fair, the wikipedia article states that solar sunspots could have contributed to the cooling, but there isn't consensus among scientists about what caused the cool down and how much was contributed by which events. I'm bringing this up because there may be forces beyond our (humanity) control that are driving global temperatures higher.

Now, on to the pragmatic question - does it really matter? I bought a Prius in 2003, partly because I expected Peak Oil to drive gasoline prices higher and partly because I felt that I needed to do my part to reduce energy consumption. What I saw was others buying gas hog SUVs and using all the gas that I was saving. It wasn't until gas prices exceeded $4.00 per gallon that I noticed an appreciable change in driving habits. Occasionally, someone would comment to me while filling up that they wished they had a more fuel efficient vehicle like mine. I'd usually ask them at what price they thought gas was expensive. The answer was usually - NOW! So I'd ask about their fuel mileage. Whatever it was, I'd ask them how much they'd pay someone to push their vehicle that far. Turns out that gas was cheaper.

Bottom line is that we'll pump and use all available petroleum that we can. If it isn't you or me, someone else will. All that carbon dioxide will end up in the air. Does it really matter if we consume the petroleum in X years or we consume it in X+5 years? Even if we go back to 1990 consumption levels, we'll still be increasing the percentage of atmospheric carbon dioxide (just as we did then.)

Unless we develop a new form of energy that is as convenient and more contains more energy per unit cost as petroleum, we will end up in the same place.

Grover

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Grover

Quote:

Bottom line is that we'll pump and use all available petroleum that we can. If it isn't you or me, someone else will. All that carbon dioxide will end up in the air. Does it really matter if we consume the petroleum in X years or we consume it in X+5 years? Even if we go back to 1990 consumption levels, we'll still be increasing the percentage of atmospheric carbon dioxide (just as we did then.)

Unless we develop a new form of energy that is as convenient and more contains more energy per unit cost as petroleum, we will end up in the same place.

That's a fairly fatalistic pov, but one with which it is difficult to argue.  You might find this article in agreement:

http://guymcpherson.com/2011/08/three-paths-to-near-term-human-extinction/

Quote:

About a decade ago I realized we were putting the finishing touches on our own extinction party, with the party probably over by 2030. During the intervening period I’ve seen nothing to sway this belief, and much evidence to reinforce it. Yet the protests, ridicule, and hate mail reach a fervent pitch when I speak or write about the potential for near-term extinction of Homo sapiens.

“We’re different.”
“We’re special.”
“We’re too intelligent.”
“We’ll find a way out. We always do.”

We’re humans, and therefore animals. Like all life, we’re special. Like all organisms, we’re susceptible to overshoot. Like all organisms, we will experience population decline after overshoot.

Let’s take stock of our current predicaments, beginning with one of several ongoing processes likely to cause our extinction. Then I’ll point out the good not quite so bad news.

Quote:

The bottom line

You’ve been warned repeatedly in this space, and the Guardian finally joins the party: The industrial economic system is about to blow. This burst of hope, our remaining chance at salvation, will undoubtedly be greeted with the usual assortment of protests, ridicule, and hate mail I’ve come to expect from planetary consumers who want to keep consuming the planet.

The underlying predicament — reduction in available energy — is described graphically by Gail Tverberg in this essay. She then tacks on fine analysis in this subsequent essay. Jared Diamond adds a dose of complexity, as described by Erik Curren at Transition Voice.

But these warning shots are only the most recent in a rich history dating back to Marcus Aurelius (and probably further). For materials only slightly older than me that focus on our energy predicament, take a peek at M. King Hubbert’s 1956 paper and the text of Admiral Hyman G. Rickover’s 1957 speech.

And then, let go.

He documents this theme in fair detail, but that doesn't mean he's on target.  It does mean we should be taking heed.  There are plenty of warning signs that we are approaching, and have already passed, environmental tipping points that cannot sustainably be passed.  Although there is a good deal of fretting on this site and others about peak oil and the economy (two Es), I would suggest that the earth will be much better off if we run out of non-renewable resources tomorrow.  Humanity might take a serious hit, but will probably survive in some fashion.  Continuing our consumption patterns only makes that survival more difficult and improbable.  When the environmental crash comes (3rd E to which far too little attention is paid), it may well be horrendous, far worse than running out of oil or a global economic collapse.

Doug

edited to add material

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critters and plants heading north

http://apnews.excite.com/article/20110818/D9P6LK500.html

Quote:

WASHINGTON (AP) - Animals across the world are fleeing global warming by heading north much faster than they were less than a decade ago, a new study says.

About 2,000 species examined are moving away from the equator at an average rate of more than 15 feet per day, about a mile per year, according to new research published Thursday in the journal Science which analyzed previous studies. Species are also moving up mountains to escape the heat, but more slowly, averaging about 4 feet a year.

The species - mostly from the Northern Hemisphere and including plants - moved in fits and starts, but over several decades it averages to about 8 inches an hour away from the equator.

"The speed is an important issue," said study main author Chris Thomas of the University of York. "It is faster than we thought."

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Doug wrote: Quote: Bottom

Doug wrote:

Quote:

Bottom line is that we'll pump and use all available petroleum that we can. If it isn't you or me, someone else will. All that carbon dioxide will end up in the air. Does it really matter if we consume the petroleum in X years or we consume it in X+5 years? Even if we go back to 1990 consumption levels, we'll still be increasing the percentage of atmospheric carbon dioxide (just as we did then.)

Unless we develop a new form of energy that is as convenient and more contains more energy per unit cost as petroleum, we will end up in the same place.

That's a fairly fatalistic pov, but one with which it is difficult to argue.

Doug,

My view is more fatalistic than you can imagine. About 10 years ago, I woke up to the problems of infinite wants bumping up against constraints of a finite world. After considerable reading, I've narrowed my problem focus areas to the following (in order of importance to me:)

  • 1) Peak Oil
  • 2) Crushing levels of debt at all levels
  • 3) Aging demographics in the developed world
  • 4) Response to global warming
  • 5) Religious and political zealotry

I don't believe that humans are capable of mustering sufficient will to combat global warming. I'm afraid of any attempts to do so. They will have to be coordinated by a superstate organization. That just opens the door to a new world order ... and the subsequent dictatorship that will eventually accompany it.

I'm not convinced that anthropogenic contributions to global warming are the primary cause. Is it smart to burn as many fossil fuels as we do to maintain our economy? No. There are always unintended consequences. Will we sacrifice our economy and the debt based fiat currency? Not willingly.

Grover

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Opinions?

Doug -

What's your take on this article?  http://post-gazette.com/pg/11233/1168499-373.stm

Admittedly, it was tough reading around the political partisan axe grinding, but I'm more interested in the couple of nuggets of alledged fact that were sprinkled in.

I don't lend much credence to Harrison polling - these are the same people who think Snookie's underwear is important. 

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Kelly article

You don't have to get far into the article to find the first non-truth:

Quote:

Global temperatures peaked in 1998.

1998 was a peak, no doubt about it, but to suggest that global temperatures are leveling off is wrong, albeit a recent denialist talking point.  This chart takes out the non-man made contribution to global temperatures and shows a very clear and consistent warming pattern.

Read more: http://post-gazette.com/pg/11233/1168499-373.stm#ixzz1VmL5PGic

Quote:

If we remove the non-global-warming factors (solar variation, volcanic eruptions, el Nino), then we’ll get a much clearer picture of how global temperature is changing due to global warming (you know, from the increase in greenhouse gases). I’ve done that too. Here it is, not just for data from NASA GISS, but for all five major global temperature records:

Kelly:

Quote:
People have noticed winters are getting colder.

"People have noticed"?  Wow, now there's an objective statement of fact.

I think that whether the warmest year was 1998 or 2010 or 2005 may be arguable, but these are data points.  There are always outliers in data points.  The importance is the trend.  And, there isn't much scientific debate about that.

Quote:

This offers a fine illustration of the fact that simplistic one-liners aren’t sufficient to understand what’s going on. There are three parts to the answer. Let’s hope that’s not too much for Joe Bastardi to handle.

  • First: Natural variability can mask a rising trend on short time scales.
  • Second: Many things affect global temperature in addition to greenhouse gases.
  • Third: It hasn’t leveled off.

    Let’s consider each in turn. First, take a look at this obvious downward trend in temperature data:

    We can even put it into context with more data:

    It sure looks like temperature has “leveled off” since 1998 — in fact, perhaps since 1996 or even earlier! That’s obvious, right?

    The problem with that conclusion is that these are not temperature data. They’re artificial data. They were constructed by combining a constant upward trend at 0.018 deg.C/yr (about the same as in the real world) with random noise having a standard deviation of 0.1 deg.C (about the same as in the real world). There is absolutely no doubt, none whatsoever, that the actual trend is not only upward, it’s at exactly the same rate throughout, it didn’t stop or slow down or level off. We can be quite certain, because the data were made that way.

    I didn’t get that by generating lots and lots of random data sets until I found one showing this behavior. I just created one such data set, and there it was. It illustrates the fact that on short time scales, the appearance can be misleading, which is entirely due to the noise in the data, while the signal simply continues its increase at the same rate for the entire time span.

    It’s the very nature of statistics that not only is is possible for false trend reversals to appear for no other reason than random noise, it’s actually inevitable. In fact it’s even easier for this to happen with real global temperature, because the randomness exhibits autocorrelation. That’s why, if you really want to know whether or not global temperature has leveled off, you have to apply significance tests, you have to compensate for autocorrelation, you even have to allow for the fact that a 130-year (or 160-year) record gives you lots of chances to see such behavior just by accident.

Kelly again:

Quote:

When evidence emerged in 2009 that scientists affiliated with the Climate Research Unit of the University of East Anglia in Britain were "hiding the decline" by fudging data, few journalists paid much attention.

But a lot of Americans did, apparently. In a Rasmussen poll Aug. 3, 69 percent of respondents said it was at least somewhat likely scientists have falsified research data.

"Evidence" did not emerge.  In the thousands of emails that were hacked illegally, there was one private email between two scientists that was egregiously and probably intentionally misinterpreted by the usual denialist propagandists.  But, in fact, no fewer than five independent panels have examined the facts and found no wrong doing on the part of CRU or its chief scientist, Phil Jones.

Quote:

The mainstream media picked up the story as negotiations over climate change mitigation began in Copenhagen on 7 December, with conservative media outlets like Fox News giving the controversy increased coverage.[11] Because of the timing, scientists and policy makers speculated that the release of emails was a smear campaign intended to undermine the climate conference.[12] In response to the controversy, the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the American Meteorological Society (AMS) and the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) released statements supporting the scientific consensus, with the AAAS concluding "based on multiple lines of scientific evidence that global climate change caused by human activities is now underway...it is a growing threat to society."[13]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Climatic_Research_Unit_email_controversy

Quote:

Most of the emails concerned technical and mundane aspects of climate research, such as data analysis and details of scientific conferences.[29]The Guardian's analysis of the emails found that the hacker had filtered them using keywords, including "Yamal", "tree rings", and "Phil Jones", so that these terms appear in many of the documents.[21] The controversy has thus focused on a small number of emails.[29] Skeptic websites picked out particular phrases, including one in which Kevin Trenberth stated, "The fact is that we can’t account for the lack of warming at the moment and it is a travesty that we can’t".[20] This was actually part of a discussion on the need for better monitoring of energy flows involved in short-term climate variability,[30] but was grossly mischaracterised by critics.[31][32]

Quote:
Climatic Research Unit email controversy
Date 17 November 2009
Location Climatic Research Unit, University of East Anglia
Also known as "Climategate"
Inquiries House of Commons Science and Technology Committee (UK)[1]
Independent Climate Change Review (UK)
International Science Assessment Panel(UK)
Pennsylvania State University] (US) United States Environmental Protection Agency (US)
Department of Commerce (US)
Verdict Exoneration or withdrawal of all major or serious charges

The rest of the article goes on to repeat several denialist talking points that have long been discredited.  If Mr. Kelly were a responsible journalist and did even minimal research he would have known that.

Doug

PS Dogs, if you're wondering about specific points, list them and I will go into it a little deeper when I have the time.  Stuff like chicken coops and firewood keep getting in the way.

Stan Robertson's picture
Stan Robertson
Status: Platinum Member (Offline)
Joined: Oct 7 2008
Posts: 529
Doug wrote: And here's a

Doug wrote:

And here's a video of a presentation by Dr. Scott Denning, an actual atmospheric scientist at Colorado State U, made at the annual sham climate change conference put on by the Heartland Institute, a so-called think tank, the only recent purpose of which is to carry the fossil fuel industry's water in the climate change debate.  Their past fame came from carrying the tobacco industry's water in the smoking debate.  Anyway, its  an interesting presentation at an unlikely forum.

Doug

Doug, Folks who don't know physics shouldn't be expounding on it. Denning saying that CO2 emits heat is simply wrong. He is also wrong in saying that the details don't matter. Putting another coat of black paint on a black window isn't likely to make it much darker. The direct effect of adding more CO2 to the atmosphere is about the same. Whether or not it contributes much to additional warming depends entirely upon feedbacks, which IPCC have assumed to be positive without proof. If it is China and India that are responsible for the possible severity of the problem, then it will be necessary to engage them in the solution.

Doug's picture
Doug
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Oct 1 2008
Posts: 2763
Stan Quote:Whether or not it

Stan

Quote:
Whether or not it contributes much to additional warming depends entirely upon feedbacks, which IPCC have assumed to be positive without proof.

That is incorrect.  GHGs by themselves have a warming effect through the following process.  It may be indirect, but the effect is there nonetheless.  GHGs block heat that is emitted by the earth as a result of solar heating that would normally escape into space, thereby warming the atmosphere.  To argue otherwise is to claim that CO2 is not a GHG.  Is that your assertion?

http://www2.sunysuffolk.edu/mandias/global_warming/greenhouse_gases.html

Quote:
Atmospheric temperature is influenced by gases that absorb outgoing radiation and these gases are called greenhouse gases. Although greenhouse gas concentrations appear to be small (less than one percent), their effect is certainly not.

Figure 2.1 (IPCC, 2007) shows the role that greenhouse gases play in the atmosphere. Solar radiation is primarily shortwave radiation which is transparent to greenhouse gases. Incoming solar radiation passes through these gases as if they were not present so the concentration of greenhouse gases does not directly influence incoming sunlight. The sunlight is absorbed by the Earth and atmosphere. Heat from the surface radiates up into the atmosphere in the form of infrared energy (longwave radiation). Greenhouse gases do absorb longwave radiation so the concentration of these gases is very important in determining how much energy the atmosphere absorbs. Increasing greenhouse gases causes an increase in atmospheric temperature. The greenhouse effect from natural greenhouse gas concentrations prior to the Industrial Revolution has kept the Earth's surface about 33 oC warmer than with an atmosphere with no greenhouse gases. For the detailed physics of the greenhouse effect please see Raymond T. Pierrehumbert's Infrared radiation and planetary temperature and Arthur Smith's Proof of the Atmospheric Greenhouse Effect (both are .PDF).

Role of Greenhouse Gases in Warming
Figure 2.1: Role of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere

I agree that China and India have probably overtaken the US in emissions.  But how does that in any way invalidate climate change theory?

Doug

Stan Robertson's picture
Stan Robertson
Status: Platinum Member (Offline)
Joined: Oct 7 2008
Posts: 529
Doug

Doug wrote:

Stan

Quote:
Whether or not it contributes much to additional warming depends entirely upon feedbacks, which IPCC have assumed to be positive without proof.

That is incorrect.  GHGs by themselves have a warming effect through the following process.  It may be indirect, but the effect is there nonetheless.  GHGs block heat that is emitted by the earth as a result of solar heating that would normally escape into space, thereby warming the atmosphere.  To argue otherwise is to claim that CO2 is not a GHG.  Is that your assertion?. . . . . .

What I said was that Denning's assertion that CO2 emits heat is errant nonsense. Now if you want to say that a (non-electric) blanket emits heat, I think that most people would just giggle. I also said that Denning was wrong when he said that the details of how greenhouse gases warm the earth don't matter. By the IPCC's own calculations, the direct warming effect from doubling the atmospheric CO2 concentration would be about 1 C and not anything to worry about. It is the details of the feedback mechanisms that will make the difference between this relatively small effect and something either larger or smaller.

It amuses me that global warming has morphed into climate change theory. The skeptics are now called deniers of climate change in a complete reversal. It used to be the proponents of global warming who did not believe that climate could change except via human causes; never mind that there is an extensive history of change that includes times much warmer than the present within the past two millennia.

Doug wrote:

I agree that China and India have probably overtaken the US in emissions.  But how does that in any way invalidate climate change theory?

Doug

Huh? Classic nonsequitur. Go read what I actually said. Better yet, read the notes that I sent to you a while back and see if you can rebut anything that I wrote.

Stan

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