Are the changes in the Arctic messing with our weather? Background

By: Dr. Ricky Rood , 4:02 AM GMT on January 14, 2014

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Are the changes in the Arctic messing with our weather? Background

(20140115: Revision: This is a revision. In the comments on the original post rlk and ScottLincoln questioned the magnitude of the pressure change in the figure used in the paper. I wrote Kevin Trenberth, the author, and he confirms that the units should be pascals, not hectopascals. I thank rlk and ScottLincoln, and indeed, I should have flagged this as well, rather than noting how large it was and moving along in the original post. The conclusions in the blog are not altered.)

This entry continues with my listing of the big-ticket items in climate change since I last taught in April 2012. In the last entry I wrote about how the technology used to extract oil and natural gas, hydraulic fracturing (fracking), stood as a threat to climate change because it assured the availability of fuels that we preferred and, also, provided desirable jobs. Some would argue that fracking might diminish our use of coal, which is a good thing. This is likely true, but there are several issues that need to be analyzed in that conclusion: selling our coal to other countries, the complete accounting of greenhouse gases associated with fracking, the broader environmental consequences of fracking, the fact that there are no real disincentives for using fossil fuels, and the fact that all burnt fossil fuels have a long-term cumulative effect (My Michigan colleagues integrated assessment of fracking). I don’t want to diminish the importance that the carbon dioxide emissions in the U.S. have, perhaps, been decreasing in recent years; however, it is not a fact that suggests we are on a path to addressing the problems of climate change. I assert we remain in a situation where economic growth, which we require for well-being, is still strongly linked to energy use and carbon emissions. If our economy grows so will our emissions as the preliminary 2013 emissions suggest.

The second big-ticket item that I want to highlight is the work investigating the changes in the Arctic and the possibility that these changes are already influencing the weather in the continental U.S. and, more broadly, in the Northern Hemisphere. I have written about this extensively in my series on the Arctic Oscillation and the hot and cold fluctuations in the U.S. (link to last in series, also see links below). I take some pleasure in noting that back in December I wrote, “The whole Arctic air mass is starting to move east, which means it will get a lot more press.” I did not imagine that it would lead to all of the anxiety about the rogue polar vortex (We the geeks).

I will leave the machinations of polar-vortex mania to my more able colleagues. I want to analyze why this work about the Arctic Oscillation, the polar vortex and wild fluctuations between warm and cold weather is important enough to be on my list of big-ticket items.

There is little controversy that there have been massive changes in the climate of the Arctic. These are most easily noted in the large changes in Arctic sea ice. There is also a whole set of coherent and convergent evidence that documents the changes in the Arctic. The most direct evidence is the increase in temperature, which is much greater in the Arctic than at lower latitudes and in the tropics (Polar or Arctic amplification). Coincident with this warming is a lengthening of the growing season and an increase in activity in the northern forests – the greening of the Arctic (200 blogs ago, Getting Ready for Spring 5). There is controversy about whether these changes in the Arctic are causing changes to the weather at lower latitudes. There is also controversy about if there is a change in the weather at lower latitudes, is it due to the local changes in the Arctic such as loss of sea ice.

I want to start the discussion with Figure 11 from a paper by Kevin Trenberth and John Fasullo entitled, An apparent hiatus in global warming? I will write more about this paper in a future blog. Trenberth and Fasullo provide a self-consistent global analysis that tracks the heating of the planet. Figure 11 of this paper shows the difference in average sea-level pressure between two time periods. An average is taken for 1999-2012 and another for 1979-1998. The difference between the two averages shows an increase in sea-level pressure. This increase is represented by the large red area stretching from the North Atlantic, east of Greenland, to the Arctic Ocean and centered over the North Pole. The maximum magnitude of this increase is about 150 Pa (pascal). To put this in perspective the surface pressure of the Earth is often cited as being 1000 hPa (hectopascal).



Figure 1: Mean annual sea-level pressure differences from ERA-Interim Reanalysis for 1999–2012 and 1979–1998 in Pa (pascal, colors) and for surface wind vectors (arrows) in meter per seconds with the key at top right. (a) Map projection centered on the Pacific and (b) polar stereographic projection of the Northern Hemisphere. (Note the magnitude of pressure is in Pa, not hPa, which is a typo in the original manuscript.)(Figure 11 from An apparent hiatus in global warming?)

This increase in the Arctic sea-level pressure can also be viewed in terms of the strength of the polar vortex, or in terms of wind, the strength of the rotation of the wind. Low pressure is associated with a strong vortex with strong rotation; high pressure is associated with a weak vortex with less rotation (earlier blog on strong and weak vortex). Hence, the observations show that there is a weaker polar vortex. As measured in terms of the Arctic Oscillation, the Arctic Oscillation is more negative. From our narrow U.S. perspective, this is associated with cold and snowy conditions over the eastern half of the U.S. leading to exaggerated political and press attention and excess purchase of toilet paper and bread in supermarkets from Atlanta northwards. It is quite easy to conclude that for the past decade and a half the Arctic Oscillation has been more prominently in its negative phase.

The analysis of Trenberth and Fasullo comes to the conclusion that this change in the Arctic is the consequence of changes in the global distribution of mass of the atmosphere. Specifically, Trenberth and Fasullo trace the changes in the Arctic back to changes in the tropics. Placing the Arctic changes as a part of a global circulation change stands in tension to the conclusions of Jennifer Francis and her collaborators, who are quoted extensively in my blogs. Francis and Vavrus (2012) in Evidence linking Arctic amplification to extreme weather in mid-latitudes correlate the changes in sea-level pressure to changes in the sea ice, the Arctic Oscillation and snow cover. This is a focus on a direct local effect in the Arctic causing changes in the global circulation.

The work that I cite above, in all cases, points to a time in the past 15 years where the Arctic Oscillation is often in its negative phase. There is a difference between the researchers in the determination of cause and effect. The difference in cause and effect leads, perhaps, to different conclusions about the future. The question: in the future will the Arctic Oscillation be more prone to its negative phase? With that question, I introduce another paper, by Elizabeth Barnes and co-authors Revisiting the evidence linking Arctic amplification to extreme weather in midlatitudes. Barnes et al. analyze the simulations used in the most recent Climate Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP-5) and conclude that the models do not support the conclusion that the Arctic Oscillation will become more negative in the future.

In the next blog, I will discuss the arguments offered by these different researchers. Then I will provide my analysis of why I conclude that what is happening in the Arctic makes it to my list of the big-ticket items of the past year.

r


Cold Weather in Denver: Climate Change and Arctic Oscillation (8)

Climate Change and the Arctic Oscillation 2

Climate Change and the Arctic Oscillation 1

Wobbles in the Barriers

Barriers in the Atmosphere

Behavior

Definitions and Some Background

August Arctic Oscillation presentation

CPC Climate Glossary “The Arctic Oscillation is a pattern in which atmospheric pressure at polar and middle latitudes fluctuates between negative and positive phases.”

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Quoting 668. Patrap:
El Nino Patterns Could Become Twice As Likely In A Warming World...
I hope we get one soon - the denialist community needs a new surface temperature spike spike to use as a cherry-picked starting point for their next round of "there's no warming" blather.

Actually, the next El Nino, if it's a major one, will boost the 30-year warming curve that is used in valid climate science, so the denialist industry will wait a few years after the next major El Nino spike and the start the same old "temps haven't risen schtick, as illustrated by this "Escalator" graph from SkepticalScience.com that is occasionally posted here.

Member Since: June 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 1527
Quoting 672. cyclonebuster:


On graphics all you have to do is right click then click inspect element to get link...


You know I had forgotten that..
I'm pretty lazy sometimes.. :p

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Quoting 669. pcola57:


Link was posted cyclone..
It's the part of the post thats in blue titled "Dr. Cool"..
Just click on it..


Oh ok I missed that...
Member Since: January 2, 2006 Posts: 127 Comments: 20459
Davos: Climate impacts pose severe global economic risk
Annual World Economic Forum Global Risk report again highlights climate change and extreme weather as big risks for economy over the next decade
By James Murray, 20 Jan 2014
Climate change and related risks such as extreme weather impacts and water shortages have again been listed amongst the most serious risks faced by the global economy over the next decade by the World Economic Forum (WEF).
Publishing its latest Global Risks report ahead of the launch of this week's annual WEF Summit in Davos, the group listed the "most likely" risks faced by the global economy over the next decade as social risks associated with income disparity, environmental risks presented by extreme weather events, the impact of unemployment and underemployment, climate change impacts, and cyberattacks. ...
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Quoting 670. pcola57:


Link to your data assumption of 15% please..


On graphics all you have to do is right click then click inspect element to get link...
Member Since: January 2, 2006 Posts: 127 Comments: 20459
Quoting 662. Barefootontherocks:
emComment 646.
I'd like to see the source of the quote posted here from Sen. Inhofe.
Trivial and simple to find - you could do what I just did - Google it!

For the Google impaired - a LINK to the Climate Progress article on that Maddow interview with Inhofe - with the video included.

(Considering his other statements to Maddow during that interview, it appears that Inhofe is really stupid, ignorant, misinfomed, or a liar. Or a combination of those traits.)
Member Since: June 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 1527
Deleted due to my ignorance showing again.. :p
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Quoting 666. cyclonebuster:


Link please... It will be bad for the environment to release sulfur compounds into our atmosphere.... They will settle out and eventually get into our oceans and lakes making them more acidic... They are already to acidic now from burning fossil fuels...We need to learn our lessons....


Link was posted cyclone..
It's the part of the post thats in blue titled "Dr. Cool"..
Just click on it..
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El Nino Patterns Could Become Twice As Likely In A Warming World

Climate Central | By Brian Kahn
Posted: 01/20/2014 10:23 am EST | Updated: 01/20/2014 10:52 am EST

From Climate Central's Brian Kahn:

The question of how global warming will influence El Niño has been a challenging one for scientists to answer. A new study suggests while the overall number of El Niños is unlikely to increase, particularly strong “super” El Niños are likely to occur twice as frequently in a warming world.

El Niño refers to a pattern of unusually warm water stretching across the surface of eastern equatorial Pacific that occurs every 3-7 years. That warm water influences climate patterns around the world, increasing the likelihood of wet and cool weather in the Southeast, heavy rain in California, warm and dry conditions in the Pacific Northwest, and host of other global impacts.

The strongest El Nino ever recorded occurred in 1997-98. It led to heavy rains across the southern U.S., landslides in Peru, wildfires in Indonesia, and the cratering of the anchovy fishery in the eastern Pacific. These and other impacts were responsible an estimated $35-45 billion in damage and 23,000 deaths worldwide.

Another “super” El Nino in 1982-83 wreaked similar havoc globally.

In a study published on Sunday in Nature Climate Change, researchers show that climate change could double the frequency of super El Nino events.

To obtain the results, researchers led by Wenjun Cai, a climate modeler at Australia’s Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation, used 20 climate models to simulate ocean temperatures and rainfall in the tropical Pacific with and without changes in greenhouse gases. Cai looked specifically at the period of December-February, when El Nino tends to peak and its impacts are the most widespread.

“Under greenhouse warming the eastern equatorial Pacific warms faster than the surrounding regions . . . making it easier to have maximum SST (sea surface temperatures) in the eastern equatorial Pacific, and hence more occurrences of extreme El Nino events,” Cai said in an email.

Surface waters in the eastern tropical Pacific averages around 72°F, about 10°F cooler than the western tropical Pacific. Cai said that makes it easier to warm, which reduces the overall temperature difference between the two regions and makes conditions more ripe for super El Ninos to develop.

Specifically, the results show that the likelihood of super El Ninos doubles from one every 20 years in the previous century to one every 10 years in the 21st century.

While the results show an increase in the number of abnormally strong El Ninos, they don’t show a change in the total number of El Ninos. The study also shows that the the current influence El Nino has on weather elsewhere is unlikely to change. Both are results that other studies have found as well.

The core of Cai’s results, that more super El Ninos are likely, was disputed by Kevin Trenberth, a senior scientist at the National Corporation for Atmospheric Research.

He said some of the models used in the study overestimate the past number of El Nino events by a wide margin and do a poor job of representing them and their impacts.

“This seriously undermines the confidence that the models do an adequate job in ENSO (El Nino-Southern Oscillation) simulations and so why should we trust their future projections?” he said in an email.

Trenberth also said that some long-range climate models also fail to adequately simulate other natural climate patterns that influence El Nino let alone how they might also shift in a warming world.

Lisa Goddard, director of the International Research Institute for Climate and Society provided a similar assessment of some of the models used in the study. However, she said the methodology was sound and if the results are accurate, they could provide helpful information for scientists making seasonal forecasts around the globe and decision makers who rely on them.

“Since the majority of skill in seasonal forecasts is realized during El Nino events (and predictions become more skillful over more of the world's land areas), we would be able to prepare much better for the impacts of these events,” she said. “Adverse and costly climate happens in all years. We are just better able to predict that in years with strong El Nino and La Nina events.”

Though the the 1997-98 super El Nino caused extensive damage, decision makers in California poured an extra $7.5 million into flood preparedness based on seasonal forecasts that accurately predicted it months ahead of time. The state still suffered $1.1 billion in losses during the event, but that was half the total suffered during the 1982-83 super El Nino.

Water managers in Tampa Bay regularly use seasonal forecasts and the predictability of El Nino to plan for water availability in the coming months.

There is evidence that El Ninos has been changing already. Research published in January last year showed a roughly 20 percent increase in El Nino intensity over the course of the 20th century, though it didn’t specifically attribute that change to human greenhouse gas emissions.
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Quoting 661. pcola57:
ScienceShot: Ban on Ozone Destroyers Slowed Global Warming


Sid Perkins

10 November 2013 1:00 pm


"Earth is warming, but temperatures would be even higher than they are today if much of the world hadn’t banned chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) in the late 1980s. That’s the conclusion of a new study, in which researchers tracked the heat-trapping ability of all greenhouse gases in Earth’s atmosphere, including carbon dioxide, methane, and CFCs, throughout the 20th century. If CFCs—which used to be common in aerosol cans (image), industrial solvents, and as refrigerants, and which poke huge holes in the ozone layer and trap heat in Earth’s atmosphere much more effectively than carbon dioxide does—hadn’t been curtailed, the heat-trapping ability of human-emitted greenhouse gases would today be more than 15% higher than it actually is, the researchers report online today in Nature Geoscience (I highly recommend) Recommended . Previous studies have shown that global average temperatures rose about 0.8°C (about 1.44°F) during the 20th century. The new research, scientists say, suggests that global average temperatures would be another 0.1°C higher without the ban on CFCs."


So this graph would be 15% higher than it is now?? Really off scale...
Member Since: January 2, 2006 Posts: 127 Comments: 20459
Quoting 659. pcola57:
Dr. Cool


18 October 2013:
Eli Kintisch

"Climate and energy specialist David Keith has become a prominent and controversial public face for geoengineering, the concept of intentionally tinkering with Earth's climate system in order to combat global warming. Since the 1990s, he has helped move the concept into the mainstream, along the way attracting influential allies such as Microsoft founder Bill Gates and starting a geoengineering company that wants to suck carbon out of the atmosphere. Now, he's hoping to breach another frontier, proposing one of the first field experiments aimed at understanding another geoengineering technology that would use a balloon to release sun-blocking particles of sulfuric acid in the stratosphere. Now at Harvard University, Keith is also working to establish rules for such experiments, in part to persuade governments and the public that they can be safe and useful"


Link please... It will be bad for the environment to release sulfur compounds into our atmosphere.... They will settle out and eventually get into our oceans and lakes making them more acidic... They are already to acidic now from burning fossil fuels...We need to learn our lessons....
Member Since: January 2, 2006 Posts: 127 Comments: 20459
These organisms are smarter than the 3%ers...
20 Jan 2014: Soil Microbes Can Alter DNA
In Response to Climate Change, Study Says
A 10-year study of soil ecosystems has determined that microbes alter their genetic code in response to a warming climate so they can process excess carbon being absorbed by plants from the atmosphere, a team of U.S. researchers reports in the journal Applied and Environmental Microbiology. A 2-degree Celsius temperature increase spurred microbes in soil ecosystems to, over many generations, tweak their DNA, amping up their respiratory systems and converting extra organic carbon in the soil to CO2. The soil contained extra carbon because the 2-degree temperature increase made plants grow faster and higher; when those plants began to die, the carbon in their leaves, stems, and roots was added to the soil and taken up by the microbial community. Understanding the "black box" of carbon's fate in soil ecosystems holds important clues for better forecasting an ecosystem's response to climate change, says Georgia Institute of Technology researcher Kostas Konstantinidis, an author of the study. "One reason that models of climate change have such big room for variation is because we don’t understand the microbial activities that control carbon in the soil," he said.


Link



...
Member Since: January 2, 2006 Posts: 127 Comments: 20459
Richest Countries Failing to Combat Climate Change

Ingrid Fromm (AP)
Posted January 20, 2014 at 6:08 a.m.

By Paul Brown, Climate News Network

LONDON The world’s richest countries have made some progress since the 1990s in limiting environmental damage. But they have not done enough to prevent catastrophic climate change, according to the OECD, the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development.

Scientists say that carbon dioxide emissions need to start going down in the next decade to prevent global temperatures reaching dangerous levels. But the OECD predicts that levels of carbon dioxide will continue to rise and by 2050 will be 50 percent higher than today.

The 34 OECD countries in the survey are mainly the older mature economies which in the 1970s produced well over half the world’s CO2 emissions from their factories and transport. Now the OECD share of total world emissions has dropped to 30 percent, but only because of the vast increase in the energy use of China and other high-growth countries like Brazil, Russia, India, Indonesia and South Africa. These now account for 40 percent of global emissions on their own.

More Vehicles

There is some good news in the report. Some OECD countries have both increased production and reduced CO2 emissions by introducing renewables and energy efficiency.

The problem for those that fail to do so appears to be political, with countries like Australia and Canada, which have repudiated the Kyoto Protocol, apparently also abandoning most policies to combat climate change.

The report, Environment at a Glance 2013, says that on average there has been progress. Since 1990 there has been a drop of 25 percent in the amount of energy required to produce a unit of production in member countries, but this is well short of what is needed to safeguard the planet.

The report, which reviews OECD members’ efforts to combat climate change by reducing fossil fuel use, says that the overall energy mix has barely changed in 20 years. There is still an 80 percent reliance on fossil fuels, although there has been a lot of switching from coal to gas, which does reduce emissions.

Renewable energy is still only 9 percent of the total energy supply. Another problem is the increasing demand for transport. Smaller, more efficient engines are failing to offset a 17 percent increase in vehicle numbers.

Rejecting Kyoto

The major political driver for reducing emissions since 1997 has been the Kyoto Protocol. Countries which made pledges to reduce emissions, principally those in the expanded European Union, have made most progress.

This is partly due to the economic recession and exporting some dirty industries to China and other developing countries, but domestic efficiency measures and switching to renewables has helped.

Among the worst performing countries are those that made pledges under the Kyoto Protocol and subsequently abandoned them for political reasons the United States, Canada and Australia.

The top four countries in the per capita emissions table (the amount of CO2 emitted for each person in a country) has Australia in the lead and Luxembourg second, followed by the United States and Canada.

Positive Note

Luxembourg makes the list only because of its low taxes on fuel, which mean that motorists from neighboring countries fill up their cars at its petrol pumps and then drive back over the border.

Australia relies heavily on coal burning to power its industry and also exports large quantities of coal to China. The new government turned its back on international efforts to combat climate change last year. Canada had previously done the same, deciding instead to exploit its tar sands for oil production, involving high-energy use.

The United States has high per capita carbon emissions because of the lavish lifestyles of its citizens and a powerful Republican lobby that supports the fossil fuel industry and blocks any attempt to combat climate change.

On what the OECD calls “a positive note,” its members have slashed emissions of sulphur oxides by 69 percent since 1990 and of nitrogen oxide by 36 percent in the same period.

Sulphur oxides, in various forms, are a chief cause of acid rain and a potent greenhouse gas. Nitrogen oxides are also a contributor to climate change and low level ozone, which damages plants and buildings and irritates human lungs.

These reductions have been possible because of political action, showing that it is not the lack of technology that prevents the world tackling climate change but the lack of will and legislation.

Paul Brown is a joint editor for Climate News Network. Climate News Network is a news service led by four veteran British environmental reporters and broadcasters. It delivers news and commentary about climate change for free to media outlets worldwide.



Read more: http://www.kitsapsun.com/news/2014/jan/20/richest- countries-failing-to-combat-climate/#ixzz2qy2HIsFu
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Quoting 642. ColoradoBob1:

"It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!"

Upton Sinclair -



LOL

“Upton Sinclair?”
“Yes. The quote is something like, ‘It’s difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends on his not understanding it.’”

Richards, Douglas E. (2014-01-13). Mind's Eye (p. 132). Paragon Press. Kindle Edition.
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640. ColoradoBob1,
As you may also know, The Jungle, a novel, more or less helped the U.S. begin to face the issues you mention. Works of fiction can change society.

A few years back, I co-authored a manuscript (yes, fiction) that brought science and humanities together into one batter, and not batter in its violent sense. Quite the opposite. A couple publishers at Simon and Schuster group liked it a lot. Would have been a small book, kind of...(thinking) hope-generating. The publisher at Beyond Words, thought to be the best arm for the manuscript, as I like to think of it lacked imagination enough to understand the writing. After a year, they passed on it.

Point being, a unity of science and the humanities is necessary to deal with a warming globe, not one way of looking at existence but all ways, in a blend. Many of the bloggers who post here seem fearful. Fear often results from lack of hope. Right now, the world may be facing a "lesser of two evils" scene, but I hope mankind does not lose hope a solution will come to light.
...

Quoting 613. Daisyworld:


It's an important point to consider. If I know the conspiracy crowd at all, they'll translate "debiasing" as "brainwashing", then go on a rant accusing us of telling them how to think so we can control their opinions.
Less to do with "conspiracy" and more to do with those of us who've lived a life refusing to be brainwashed. Perhaps when the original Yuppies (nee Baby Boomers) die off, brainwashing will work for you. We grew up learning about the "evil brainwashing of Communism" and many will naturally resist any effort that does not allow free thinking. After all, we changed the world. And we rememeber(sic) Jonathan Livingston Seagull.

Your sociologists might want to start creating your desired memebers(sic) from the young ones who don't understand, those for whom the 1960s and 70s are words in a history book.
...


Couple other thoughts:
~Comment 646.
I'd like to see the source of the quote posted here from Sen. Inhofe. Also a vid of the "TV" moment when he said this. Can you provide them? The word, "cost," can be taken different ways in this statement. I want to know what cost he is referring to, not from you but from the source. TIA

~Comment 648. Re: the linked article.
Gosh. Is that a blog?
...

'Bye now. Me and Jonathan have a date with fate.

(edited for flow after posting)
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ScienceShot: Ban on Ozone Destroyers Slowed Global Warming


Sid Perkins

10 November 2013 1:00 pm


"Earth is warming, but temperatures would be even higher than they are today if much of the world hadn’t banned chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) in the late 1980s. That’s the conclusion of a new study, in which researchers tracked the heat-trapping ability of all greenhouse gases in Earth’s atmosphere, including carbon dioxide, methane, and CFCs, throughout the 20th century. If CFCs—which used to be common in aerosol cans (image), industrial solvents, and as refrigerants, and which poke huge holes in the ozone layer and trap heat in Earth’s atmosphere much more effectively than carbon dioxide does—hadn’t been curtailed, the heat-trapping ability of human-emitted greenhouse gases would today be more than 15% higher than it actually is, the researchers report online today in Nature Geoscience (I highly recommend) Recommended . Previous studies have shown that global average temperatures rose about 0.8°C (about 1.44°F) during the 20th century. The new research, scientists say, suggests that global average temperatures would be another 0.1°C higher without the ban on CFCs."
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ScienceShot: Predicting Heat Waves



Sid Perkins

27 October 2013 2:00 pm

"The team of Scientists used a worldwide climate model that incorporated normal month-to-month variations in sea surface temperatures and sea ice coverage, among other climate factors, to simulate 12,000 years worth of weather. During the summer months of that period, and within an area roughly equivalent to the continental United States, there were more than 5900 heat wave events, including a total of more than 16,000 heat wave days (defined as days when the high temperature reached the top 2.5% of readings for that date across 10% or more of the continental United States). For the 2300 isolated heat waves (ones that had no heat wave days in the preceding 3 weeks) that occurred during the simulation, a higher-than-normal proportion were heralded by the halo of high-pressure systems."
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Dr. Cool


18 October 2013:
Eli Kintisch

"Climate and energy specialist David Keith has become a prominent and controversial public face for geoengineering, the concept of intentionally tinkering with Earth's climate system in order to combat global warming. Since the 1990s, he has helped move the concept into the mainstream, along the way attracting influential allies such as Microsoft founder Bill Gates and starting a geoengineering company that wants to suck carbon out of the atmosphere. Now, he's hoping to breach another frontier, proposing one of the first field experiments aimed at understanding another geoengineering technology that would use a balloon to release sun-blocking particles of sulfuric acid in the stratosphere. Now at Harvard University, Keith is also working to establish rules for such experiments, in part to persuade governments and the public that they can be safe and useful"
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Crusin ' Through Science.org today..
Archives and such..
Will post anything of substance and interest..
Starting with this..

Source of Mysterious Medieval Eruption Identified..
Dated 1 October 2013 4:45 pm


Excerpt :

"In 2012, a team of scientists led by geochemist Gifford Miller of the University of Colorado, Boulder, strengthened the link between the mystery eruption and the onset of the Little Ice Age by using radiocarbon dating of dead plant material from beneath the ice caps on Baffin Island and Iceland, as well as ice and sediment core data, to determine that the cold summers and ice growth began abruptly between 1275 and 1300 C.E. (and became intensified between 1430 and 1455 C.E.). Such a sudden onset, they noted in Geophysical Research Letters in 2012, pointed to a huge volcanic eruption injecting sulfur into the stratosphere and starting the cooling. Subsequent, unusually large and frequent eruptions of other volcanoes, as well as sea-ice/ocean feedbacks persisting long after the aerosols have been removed from the atmosphere, may have prolonged the cooling through the 1700s."
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"Gratitude is a state of mind that inherently recognizes interdependence with the external world, whether it be other humans, nature, the sacred, or a combination of these.

In a time of colossal loss, which I anticipate a chaotic world will entail, gratitude for the ability to survive and to have food, water, shelter, companionship, reasonably good health, and the use of one’s limbs and senses will be crucial."

Baker Phd, Carolyn (2013-11-19). Collapsing Consciously: Transformative Truths for Turbulent Times (Sacred Activism). North Atlantic Books.
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Quoting 612. Patrap:



Truthout Interviews: Richard Smith on the Failure of Green Solutions to Solve Environmental Problems

Sunday, 19 January 2014 10:24

"Don't shoot the messenger." Richard Smith's message may be sobering, but it's based on information that suggests we've reached a tipping point when it comes to climate change. How can we reverse the effects of greenhouse gases changing our climate? Smith says we can't – at least not under a corporate capitalist framework. The logic of corporate capitalism simply won't allow the large-scale changes needed to reverse the disastrous effects global climate change will have on life on our planet.

Also see: Beyond Growth or Beyond Capitalism?

As Richard notes in the interview, no amount of recycling, buying environmentally friendly goods, or market-based carbon reduction schemes can change corporate capitalism's rapacious depletion of natural resources in the production of consumable goods. Moreover, these goods (that often have a short shelf life so companies can produce more) are key to stock prices, 401k portfolios, and other investments individuals have made to assure their own security.

The will of the shareholder that drives the cycle of extraction, production, consumption and disposal of goods will push us to the environmental tipping point sooner than we think. We simply cannot sustain the levels of production and consumption with the population explosion of humans on our world.
The news is not good, but people have the capacity for imaginative and creative solutions to problems that plague our world. Now that the survival of our species is on the line, we need to move now to change our economic system.


Sorry for commenting so much, but this is priceless.

We are watching a geological process, but it is moving so fast, that even the most radical of us have trouble keeping up, much less the mainstream guys.

Speaking of mainstream, Dr Rood stopped teaching his class how to avoid 2C warming and is now teaching how to "prepare" for 4C. His efforts are laudable, but obsolete, and in my view a great example of cognitive dissonance. (I could be wrong here, the good doctor might be teaching organic gardening, scavenging techniques, military tactics, etc. but i doubt it.)

The World Bank recently pointed out that 4C of warming would more or less crash our civilization, and that from the World Bank an institution that is well on the conservative side of mainstream.

From their summary:
A world in which warming reaches 4°C above preindustrial levels (hereafter referred to as a 4°C world), would be one of unprecedented heat waves, severe drought, and major floods in many regions, with serious impacts on human systems, ecosystems, and associated services. … The impacts of the extreme heat waves projected for a 4°C world … could be expected to vastly exceed the consequences experienced to date and potentially exceed the adaptive capacities of many societies and natural systems."

If that leaves any doubt given all the other symptoms of late stage population overshoot that we all know about, all one need do is follow the links presented by the (serious) posters on this forum to see the effects of AGW already being experienced. So, any doubt (except from very understandable psychological issues like denial) is long past that this civilization is done.

Mr. Smith has abandon the "green growth" lie, but rather than fully facing the truth, he is now talking about "green socialism" a concept which might have worked to save most of us if it had been implemented in the 1990's. Mr. Smith has obviously not gone through all the stages of mourning, and seems stuck in the "negotiating" stage. Meanwhile, his recommendations are about as likely to be adopted as mine.

So, what can one really do? What actions can you take now that will help you during the inevitable collapse of this civilization and the very likely extinction of our species?

From Carolyn Baker:
"Every form of collapse is a glaring indicator that what we have been doing is not working and will ultimately lead to extinction. In the macrocosm, an unraveling of an entire civilization and the way of life we have known since birth is a stellar opportunity to practice, as the poet Rumi instructs us, “dying before we die.”


"Whether or not we actively practice a specific technique of mindfulness meditation, we are forced to become mindful in the process of preparing for the collapse of industrial civilization. One cannot be mindless and prepare consciously and intentionally at the same time. Yet even as we try on a plethora of “what if” scenarios in our minds, none of which are particularly pleasant, we can experience joy in preparing to navigate a chaotic world—and, what is more, in the throes of that very chaos, there very well may be moments of joy."

Baker Phd, Carolyn (2013-11-19). Collapsing Consciously: Transformative Truths for Turbulent Times (Sacred Activism) North Atlantic Books.

Peace.
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Quoting 645. Neapolitan:
Alternative headline: Game Over for Climate: Cowardly Conservative European Leaders Bury Green Energy Under The Direction Of Their Corporate Leaders


The brainless West Nile Virus, the Pine Beetle, the Cockroach and Northern Arctic Ice extent know better...
Member Since: January 2, 2006 Posts: 127 Comments: 20459
Quoting 644. Naga5000:
Why bother linking if you just copy/paste the whole article?


Because people complain about it if you don't link to what you just pasted...
Member Since: January 2, 2006 Posts: 127 Comments: 20459
Quoting 651. SteveDa1:
Oil Companies Will Soon Use Drones To Find Deep-Sea Fossil Fuels

There is only despair and no hope when it comes to Climate Change...

I think I'm being realistic. It's 2014 and global emissions are still rising exponentially and everybody still seems to be interested in oil.

Sure there are a few good things happening here and there but they are greatly overshadowed by the bad and only a foolish optimist will think that we are heading in the right direction.

My opinion, of course. ;)


It's difficult to refute that statement, Steve.

Many decades after climate scientists first went public with their hair on fire, global CO2 emissions continue to climb.



Does anyone really think that the world's governments will begin cutting emissions by amounts sufficient to avoid a rise of 2C in the very near future?

I don't.

I see people using diversion tactics, and resorting to finger-pointing (especially towards China and other developing countries), as if they're to blame for this crisis.

Simply put, that's not even close to accurate:



Going forward, we need to remember that 'developed' countries, like the U.S., are basically outsourcing their carbon footprints to 'developing' nations.

We aren't reducing our rate of consumption, much less the amount of dirty energy needed to create those consumable goods.

We're just consuming things made somewhere else now.
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652. yoboi
Quoting 650. Xulonn:

And I just discovered why you are correct...

/endsnark




I always wondered how AGW was created....
Member Since: August 25, 2010 Posts: 7 Comments: 2527
Oil Companies Will Soon Use Drones To Find Deep-Sea Fossil Fuels

There is only despair and no hope when it comes to Climate Change...

I think I'm being realistic. It's 2014 and global emissions are still rising exponentially and everybody still seems to be interested in oil.

Sure there are a few good things happening here and there but they are greatly overshadowed by the bad and only a foolish optimist will think that we are heading in the right direction.

My opinion, of course. ;)
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Quoting 649. Creideiki:


I don't see any coming to understanding happening.

And I just discovered why you are correct...

/endsnark

Member Since: June 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 1527
Quoting 646. Xulonn:

The survival of the modern high-energy consumption civilization and lifestyles will not be possible much longer if political leaders and governments do not acknowledge the problem and take action very soon.

The "not understanding" phase will be temporary, because AGW/CC will continue to modify the biosphere in ways that will more and more frequently manifested by disastrous events that seriously damage the infrastructure that supports civilization. By the time the recognition of reality becomes widespread enough support massive changes, it will likely be too late. A large-scale effort to counter and reverse the AGW/CC trend will probably not occur soon enough to be truly effective.

It is ironic that for many people, human nature is to not understand nature. Those who do not understand nature are often in that position because of phenomenon that Upton Sinclair observed. They not only do not understand, but they deny reality. This irrational state of mind will prevent necessary action being taken before it is too late to prevent the ultimate disaster for the human race.

James Inhofe, the Republican U.S. Senator from the state of Oklahoma - and the former Chair of the Senate Environment Committee - is the poster boy of willful ignorance with respect to AGW/CC. He actually stated on television that:

“I was actually on your side of this issue [global warming and anthropogenic climate change] when I was chairing that committee and I first heard about this. I thought it must be true until I found out what it cost.”


I don't see any coming to understanding happening.

Remember in 2011 when Inhofe got sick from that algae bloom?

The problems are 1 part summer camp ideology color wars and 1 part class warfare. At the end of the day, the Republican Party in the US cannot acknowledge that they are wrong because the cognitive dissonance is so painful. Tacked onto that is the class warfare aspect where the Economic Royalist Class has been assuring the Political Class that they're going to be sheltered from the devastation that will hit everyone else.
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Meanwhile, in another part of the world also run by backward-thinking, self-serving politicians beholden to energy interests:

Australia’s hottest year was no freak event: humans caused it

The Bureau of Meteorology has confirmed that 2013 was the hottest year in Australia since records began in 1910.

---

For various record-breaking 2013 Australian temperatures, we investigated the contributing factors to temperature extremes using a suite of state-of-the-art global climate models. The models simulated well the natural variability of Australian temperatures.

---

In August 2013, Australia broke the record for the hottest 12-month period. The odds of this occurring increased again from the hottest summer. We found that human influence increased the odds of setting this new record by at least 100 times.

Recent extreme temperatures are exceeding previous records by increasingly large margins. The chance of reaching these extreme temperatures from natural climate variations alone is becoming increasingly unlikely. When we considered the 12-month record at the end of August, it was nearly impossible for this temperature extreme to occur from natural climate variations alone in these model.

---

So to return to our what caused the 2013 record hot year across Australia? Simply put, our climate has changed due to human activities. Recent extremes, such as this hot year, are occurring well outside the bounds of natural climate variations alone.
Member Since: November 8, 2009 Posts: 4 Comments: 13743
Quoting 645. Neapolitan:
Alternative headline: Game Over for Climate: Cowardly Conservative European Leaders Bury Green Energy Under The Direction Of Their Corporate Leaders


Alternative headline:Corporate Leaders Assure European Political Class that They Will Be Protected From Worst Affects of Climate Disruption Due to Decimate the Middle, Working and Lower Classes.
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Quoting 642. ColoradoBob1:

"It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!"

Upton Sinclair -
Quoting Xulonn

"It is difficult to get people to understand global warming and the climate change it causes, when the survival of the growth-based economy and their lifestyles depend on not understanding it!

David van Harn (a.k.a. Xulonn)

The survival of the modern high-energy consumption civilization and lifestyles will not be possible much longer if political leaders and governments do not acknowledge the problem and take action very soon.

The "not understanding" phase will be temporary, because AGW/CC will continue to modify the biosphere in ways that will more and more frequently manifested by disastrous events that seriously damage the infrastructure that supports civilization. By the time the recognition of reality becomes widespread enough support massive changes, it will likely be too late. A large-scale effort to counter and reverse the AGW/CC trend will probably not occur soon enough to be truly effective.

It is ironic that for many people, human nature is to not understand nature. Those who do not understand nature are often in that position because of phenomenon that Upton Sinclair observed. They not only do not understand, but they deny reality. This irrational state of mind will prevent necessary action being taken before it is too late to prevent the ultimate disaster for the human race.

James Inhofe, the Republican U.S. Senator from the state of Oklahoma - and the former Chair of the Senate Environment Committee - is the poster boy of willful ignorance with respect to AGW/CC. He actually stated on television that:

“I was actually on your side of this issue [global warming and anthropogenic climate change] when I was chairing that committee and I first heard about this. I thought it must be true until I found out what it cost.”
Member Since: June 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 1527
Quoting 643. MisterPerfect:
Green Fade-Out: Europe to Ditch Climate Protection Goals
Alternative headline: Game Over for Climate: Cowardly Conservative European Leaders Bury Green Energy Under The Direction Of Their Corporate Leaders
Member Since: November 8, 2009 Posts: 4 Comments: 13743
Why bother linking if you just copy/paste the whole article?
Member Since: June 1, 2010 Posts: 4 Comments: 3894
Green Fade-Out: Europe to Ditch Climate Protection Goals

By Gregor Peter Schmitz in Brussels - Spiegel

The EU's reputation as a model of environmental responsibility may soon be history. The European Commission wants to forgo ambitious climate protection goals and pave the way for fracking -- jeopardizing Germany's touted energy revolution in the process.



Commission officials attribute, among other things, to the "reckless" way German Chancellor Angela Merkel blocked stricter exhaust emissions during her re-election campaign to placate domestic automotive manufacturers like Daimler and BMW. This kind of blatant self-interest, officials complained at the time, is poisoning the climate.

But now it seems that the climate is no longer of much importance to the European Commission, the EU's executive branch, either. Commission sources have long been hinting that the body intends to move away from ambitious climate protection goals. On Tuesday, the Süddeutsche Zeitung reported as much.

At the request of Commission President José Manuel Barroso, EU member states are no longer to receive specific guidelines for the development ofrenewable energy. The stated aim of increasing the share of green energy across the EU to up to 27 percent will hold. But how seriously countries tackle this project will no longer be regulated within the plan. As of 2020 at the latest -- when the current commitment to further increase the share of green energy expires -- climate protection in the EU will apparently be pursued on a voluntary basis.

Climate Leaders No More?

With such a policy, the European Union is seriously jeopardizing its global climate leadership role. Back in 2007, when Germany held the European Council presidency, the body decided on a climate and energy legislation package known as the "20-20-20" targets, to be fulfilled by the year 2020. They included:

a 20 percent reduction in EU greenhouse gas emissions;

raising the share of EU energy consumption produced from renewable resources to 20 percent;

and a 20 percent improvement in the EU's energy efficiency.

All of the goals were formulated relative to 1990 levels. And the targets could very well be met. But in the future, European climate and energy policy may be limited to just a single project: reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The Commission plans also set no new binding rules for energy efficiency.

Welcome, Frackers

In addition, the authority wants to pave the way in the EU for the controversial practice of fracking, according to the daily Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. The report says the Commission does not intend to establish strict rules for the extraction of shale gas, but only minimum health and environmental standards.

The plans will be officially presented next Wednesday ahead of an EU summit meeting in March. Observers, however, believe that a decision is unlikely to come until the summer at the earliest. But action must be taken this year: At the beginning of 2015, a climate conference will take place in Paris at which a global climate agreement is to be hashed out.

The European Parliament is unlikely to be pleased with the Commission's plans. Just at the beginning of January, a strong parliamentary majority voted to reduce carbon emissions EU-wide by 40 percent by 2030 and to raise the portion of renewables to at least 30 percent of energy consumption.

Germany's Energy Goals at Risk

The Commission's move further isolates Germany. Merkel's government, a "grand coalition" of her conservatives and the center-left Social Democratic Party (SPD), seeks to increase the share of renewables in the country's energy mix to 60 percent by 2036. As reported in the latest issue of SPIEGEL, Sigmar Gabriel, SPD chair and minister of energy and economics, recently urged Climate Commissioner Connie Hedegaard and Energy Commissioner Günther Oettinger to put forth mandatory expansion targets for renewable energy in the EU by 2030. Europe "can't afford to pass up this opportunity," Gabriel wrote.

But within the Commission, the ambitious project has long been controversial. The same goes for EU member states, as Gabriel recently discovered. Prior to Christmas the minister, together with eight colleagues from throughout the EU, called for a "renewables target" in a letter to the Commission. But some countries, such as France, joined the appeal only hesitantly at the time. Paris might prefer instead to rely more heavily on nuclear power in order to meet stringent carbon emission requirements.

Energy Commissioner Günther Oettinger, a German from Merkel's Christian Democratic Union, has also shown reluctance. Rather than setting clear goals for the share of renewables, he wants fixed targets only for the reduction of carbon emissions -- and he is skeptical even of the 40 percent target proposed by Climate Commissioner Hedegaard.

The Berlin-based German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP) writes in a recent study that more moderate EU climate goals and less support for renewable energies could have a real impact on Germany's so-called Energiewende, or energy revolution. "In such a context," writes the nonpartisan think tank, "it will be increasingly difficult for Germany to successfully carry out pioneering policies."

http://www.spiegel.de/international/europe/europe an-commission-move-away-from-climate-protection-go als-a-943664.html
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"It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!"

Upton Sinclair -
Member Since: August 13, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 3022
Hundreds of millions of people are alive today because Upton Sinclair wrote 'The Jungle'.
Member Since: August 13, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 3022
"It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!"

Upton Sinclair -

When Sinclair wrote , " The Jungle " , we had a complete 'free market' world. I could sell cocaine in a soft drink and call it a 'tonic'.
I could employ 12 year old boys in the coal tipples to flip 'clinkers' out of stream from my mine for 12 hours a day.

I could put radium in tooth paste , and claim it made your teeth 'brighter'.

But mainly I could ship beef from Chicago to New York covered in E. Coli.
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Quoting 638. ColoradoBob1:
Desert wrecks: The desolate ship cemetery where camels walk beside rusting vessels buried in sand


These are the desert wrecks - great hulking ships scattered across a wide expanse of sand in Central Asia.

The rusting vessels once sailed proudly across the 26,000 sq mile Aral Sea between Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan.

Now they lie in a vast, arid plain that provides no hint of the fact it was once a lake the size of Scotland.


Read more: Link


The lake has shrunk by 90 per cent in the past 50 years in what has been called one of the planet's 'most shocking environmental disasters.'

It began to disappear back in the 1960s, when Russia diverted the rivers that fed the lake to assist irrigation at their cotton plants.



"It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!"

Upton Sinclair -


Member Since: August 13, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 3022
Desert wrecks: The desolate ship cemetery where camels walk beside rusting vessels buried in sand


These are the desert wrecks - great hulking ships scattered across a wide expanse of sand in Central Asia.

The rusting vessels once sailed proudly across the 26,000 sq mile Aral Sea between Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan.

Now they lie in a vast, arid plain that provides no hint of the fact it was once a lake the size of Scotland.


Read more: Link
Member Since: August 13, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 3022
Quoting 634. Creideiki:


"It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!"


This article in Forbes is about a year old, it was written by James Taylor, a well known denier, with Heartland Institute aid.

Here are two links to articles debunking the article:

ClimateScienceWatch

Eli Rabett


Two things to remember:

1. If it's about climate change and it's in Forbes it's wrong.

2.If it's by James Taylor, it's worse than wrong.



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Quoting 634. Creideiki:


"It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!"


Upton Sinclair -



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Quoting 632. Astrometeor:


Why people swim in a river that is a homophone (near, if not exact) of piranha is beyond me. I know it's hot down there, but I'd rather be sweaty and stinky than have little bite marks on me...


Presumably for similar reasons people swim the the Dead Sea, I would guess.
Member Since: January 11, 2012 Posts: 6 Comments: 867
Quoting 607. Physicistretired:
And now for something completely different. Looks like the good folks at Forbes are up to their usual tricks:

Peer-Reviewed Survey Finds Majority Of Scientists Skeptical Of Global Warming Crisis

When did APEGA petroleum engineers in Alberta (read tar sands country) become 'scientists'?


"It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!"
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627. Daisyworld 1:27 AM GMT on January 20, 2014 +4

"Voracious" carnivorous fish keep attacking Argentine bathers


Add that to the 100,000 dead bats , and dead kangaroos in Australia. The starfish collapse on the East and West coast.

And this :
Algae In The Pacific Are Losing Their Skeletons Because Of Ocean Acidification, Global Climate Change

Link
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Quoting 627. Daisyworld:
"Voracious" carnivorous fish keep attacking Argentine bathers

Associated Press | January 19, 2014

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina - Attacks by a school of carnivorous fish have injured at least 10 people bathing in an Argentine river since Thursday.

The attacks took place in the Parana River in Rosario some 186 miles northeast of Buenos Aires. Seventy people who were cooling off from high temperatures were also injured there in late December by the same piranha-like fish. They included seven children who lost parts of their fingers or toes.

The latest attack by the "palometas" was confirmed Saturday. They've been described by the local director of lifeguards as "a type of piranha, big, voracious and with sharp teeth that can really bite."

Media reports said the injured included a boy who suffered a foot wound while floating in the river.

Experts say unusually high temperatures during the Austral summer and lower numbers of species such as caiman that preyed on the fish could be causing the attacks.


Why people swim in a river that is a homophone (near, if not exact) of piranha is beyond me. I know it's hot down there, but I'd rather be sweaty and stinky than have little bite marks on me...
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Member Since: August 9, 2011 Posts: 26 Comments: 8802
Member Since: June 27, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 3600
At My view on climate change Bart Verheggen discusses

Andrew Dessler’s testimony on what we know about climate change and contrasts it with Judith Curry's testimony which tends to muddy the waters.

In his recent testimony, Andrew Dessler reviewed what he thinks “are the most important conclusions the climate scientific community has reached in over two centuries of work”. I think that’s a very good choice to focus on, as the basics of what we know is most important, “at least as to the thrust and direction of policy” (Herman Daly). This focus served as a good antidote to the other witness, Judith Curry, who emphasizes (and often exaggerates) uncertainty to the point of conflating it with ignorance. ...

...A key distinction in the two senate hearings was that Andrew Dessler focused on what we know, whereas Judith Curry focused on what we don’t know (though “AndThenTheresPhysics” made a good point that Curry goes far beyond that, by e.g. proclaiming confidence in certain benign outcomes (e.g. regarding sensitivity) while claiming ignorance in areas where we have a half-decent, if incomplete, understanding, e.g. regarding the hiatus). I have argued before that emphasizing (let alone exaggerating) uncertainties is not the road to increase people’s understanding of the issue, where what we do know is much more important to convey (if your goal is to increase the public understanding of scientific knowledge). Alongside that I argue that much more attention is needed to explain the nature of science, which is needed to e.g. place scientific uncertainties in a proper context.


Herman Daly said it as follows, in a quote I’ve used regularly over the past few years:

If you jump out of an airplane you need a crude parachute more than an accurate altimeter.

Arguing whether the altimeter might be off by a few inches is interesting from a scientific/technological perspective, but for the people in the plane it’s mostly a distraction.
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Objectivism - Quantitative side of Sociology, we strive to approach everything as a value neutral observer.


This reminds of the debate about building the A-bomb.

Except the physics and politics are much clearer than Niels Bohr getting Alfred to write a letter to Franklin.
Member Since: August 13, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 3022
"Voracious" carnivorous fish keep attacking Argentine bathers

Associated Press | January 19, 2014

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina - Attacks by a school of carnivorous fish have injured at least 10 people bathing in an Argentine river since Thursday.

The attacks took place in the Parana River in Rosario some 186 miles northeast of Buenos Aires. Seventy people who were cooling off from high temperatures were also injured there in late December by the same piranha-like fish. They included seven children who lost parts of their fingers or toes.

The latest attack by the "palometas" was confirmed Saturday. They've been described by the local director of lifeguards as "a type of piranha, big, voracious and with sharp teeth that can really bite."

Media reports said the injured included a boy who suffered a foot wound while floating in the river.

Experts say unusually high temperatures during the Austral summer and lower numbers of species such as caiman that preyed on the fish could be causing the attacks.
Member Since: January 11, 2012 Posts: 6 Comments: 867
At My view on climate change Bart Verheggen discusses

Andrew Dessler’s testimony on what we know about climate change and contrasts it with Judith Curry's testimony which tends to muddy the waters.

In his recent testimony, Andrew Dessler reviewed what he thinks “are the most important conclusions the climate scientific community has reached in over two centuries of work”. I think that’s a very good choice to focus on, as the basics of what we know is most important, “at least as to the thrust and direction of policy” (Herman Daly). This focus served as a good antidote to the other witness, Judith Curry, who emphasizes (and often exaggerates) uncertainty to the point of conflating it with ignorance. ...

...A key distinction in the two senate hearings was that Andrew Dessler focused on what we know, whereas Judith Curry focused on what we don’t know (though “AndThenTheresPhysics” made a good point that Curry goes far beyond that, by e.g. proclaiming confidence in certain benign outcomes (e.g. regarding sensitivity) while claiming ignorance in areas where we have a half-decent, if incomplete, understanding, e.g. regarding the hiatus). I have argued before that emphasizing (let alone exaggerating) uncertainties is not the road to increase people’s understanding of the issue, where what we do know is much more important to convey (if your goal is to increase the public understanding of scientific knowledge). Alongside that I argue that much more attention is needed to explain the nature of science, which is needed to e.g. place scientific uncertainties in a proper context.


Herman Daly said it as follows, in a quote I’ve used regularly over the past few years:

If you jump out of an airplane you need a crude parachute more than an accurate altimeter.

Arguing whether the altimeter might be off by a few inches is interesting from a scientific/technological perspective, but for the people in the plane it’s mostly a distraction.
Member Since: June 27, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 3600

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About RickyRood

I'm a professor at U Michigan and lead a course on climate change problem solving. These articles often come from and contribute to the course.