It seemed a little apocalyptic: Climate Case Study

By: Dr. Ricky Rood , 5:48 PM GMT on May 02, 2014

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It seemed a little apocalyptic: Climate Case Study

When I heard that the train carrying crude oil had blown up in Lynchburg, VA yesterday (April 30, 2014), it felt a little apocalyptic. Lynchburg, VA is place that I remember fondly because as a kid riding around the country looking at Mail Pouch Tobacco barns, Lynchburg had this big billboard on the edge of town proclaiming it the home of Chapstick. (Here is a set of historical pictures from Lynchburg.)

The burning train in Lynchburg immediately brought to mind the Lac-Megantic Quebec disaster in July of 2013. There have been several train wrecks and fires in the last year. They are all carrying petroleum products. This is an issue that I mentioned in my blog on No Energy Policy and the Keystone Pipeline. It is, therefore, part of climate change and our response.

Earlier in the day I had been asked by my favorite climate policy friend whether or not there was any new information about climate change and tornadoes. The question was in response to the tornadoes in Arkansas, Mississippi and Alabama. My response was to steer away from attributing the tornadoes to climate change, especially if any public statements were to be made. The special circumstances that lead to tornadoes are complicated, and how tornadoes will change in our warming and moistening planet is far from certain. A likely change in the characteristics of tornadoes would be the timing of tornadoes, occurring, perhaps, earlier in the year. I said that if there was something to talk about policy wise, then it would be the quality of forecasts and warnings. Alas, even this is politicized, as Rep. Jim Bridenstine (R-OK) gave NOAA Director Dr. Kathryn Sullivan grief over forecast deficiencies and stated that NOAA was compromising weather forecasting by placing money in climate research rather than forecasting.

What did catch my climate sensor, however, was that rather than more Alabama tornadoes on the afternoon of April 29, 2014, there was more than 15 inches of rain in Pensacola, FL (NWS Historic Flash Flood). What struck me first was that all of this rain was not very far east of where the tornadoes had struck the day before. I immediately thought of the jet stream and the blogs I’ve written on the research about weather systems moving more slowly. There was all of this rain in Florida, and here in Colorado where I am, there has been a persistent and unpleasant north wind. In California, it’s hot, chronically dry, with unusual Santa Ana winds and wildfire. (More on Santa Ana winds)

With all of this I hunted down a weather map at the European Center for Medium-range Weather Forecasts, which I reproduce in this figure. This map is of North America and shows the sea level pressure and the wind speed (colors). The wind field is at an altitude about 1.5 km above sea level (850 hecto-Pascals (hPa), nice discussion of 850 hPa). I have marked the low, high, low pattern extending from the eastern half of the U.S. into the Atlantic Ocean. This is a distinct and unusual pattern that has been slow moving, perhaps pretty close to stuck.




Figure 1: Sea level pressure and 850 hPa wind speed (about 1.5 km above sea level) from ECMWF. See text for description.

I put a big red arrow crossing the coast at the Florida panhandle. This is where very moist air is flowing, persistently, into the East Coast of the U.S. This is the source of the water for the extreme rain. Here we have two important characteristics, the weather pattern is moving slowly, and moist and warm air resupplies water as it rains out of the atmosphere. I put another red arrow in the center of the continent, showing those north winds in Colorado. They’re just the other side of the low that caused the rain in Florida and Alabama. In the western side of the U.S. and Canada, there is a broad region of high pressure (dashed red arrow), which keeps California hot and dry and is also the condition that sets up Santa Ana winds.

Let’s return to Pensacola. The Pensacola News Journal has many stories and pictures of the flood. Here’s another story on the flood from the Tallahassee Democrat. Also I have learned about NWSMobile, which has many snippets about the flood along the Alabama – Florida shore. Here is an entry with rainfall totals that shows a total, at 7:40 AM on April 30, of 17.70 inches of rain in Pensacola. The pictures show collapsed roads, flooded cities and overwhelmed sewers.

Later in the day I got an email from a friend entitled “The near future is clear.” The first sentence is “We got about 8-10 inches of rain over the past day and a half.” This is up in Maryland. There is this amazing video in the Baltimore Sun of a road collapsing in Baltimore - you need to make it to about 1:18 in the video.

In my last blog I wrote about the impacts of climate change. One of the most robust signals that has already emerged as the climate warms is the increase of extreme precipitation events. For example Groisman et al. 2012 state that, “Analyses show that for the central U.S., a statistically significant redistribution in the spectra of intense precipitation days/events during the past decades has occurred. Moderately heavy precipitation events (within a 12.7–25.4 mm per day range) became less frequent compared to days and events with precipitation totals above 25.4 mm.” This observation is not limited to the Central U.S. or even the U.S.; it is a global observation. Figure 2 shows changes observed in the continental U.S.



Figure 2: From Jeff Master’s blog on 2011 extreme spring: Percent increase in the amount falling in heavy precipitation events (defined as the heaviest 1% of all daily events) from 1958 to 2007, for each region of the U.S. There are clear trends toward more very heavy precipitation events for the nation as a whole, and particularly in the Northeast and Midwest. Climate models predict that precipitation will increasingly fall in very heavy events, similar to the trend that has been observed over the past 50 years in the U.S. Image credit: United States Global Change Research Program. Figure updated from Groisman, P. Ya. et al., 2004: Contemporary changes of the hydrological cycle over the contiguous United States, trends derived from in situ observations. Journal of Hydrometeorology, 5(1), 64-85.

Anecdotally, in the problems that I work with on climate planning for cities, the issue that is most discussed is extreme rain and the impact on cities. The Duluth, Minnesota flood of 2012, caused by a slow moving weather system, overwhelmed the storm sewers and water management systems. The floods in Duluth and Pensacola demonstrate vulnerabilities. From the Glossary of the IPCC Working Group II vulnerability is defined as “The propensity or predisposition to be adversely affected. Vulnerability encompasses a variety of concepts including sensitivity or susceptibility to harm and lack of capacity to cope and adapt.” My colleagues and I find that people understand vulnerability, especially when made real to them by streets collapsing, municipal sewer plants overflowing, cars sliding into the abyss, buildings flooding and people suffering physical and financial harm. When this vulnerability aligns with observations, such as those, highlighted above, of increasing extreme precipitation, then the links between weather, climate and new types of risk become real. When the observations of change, the predictions of models, the relation between weather and climate, and the need to rebuild infrastructure to last for fifty years come together, then inclusion of climate change into planning and development becomes desirable and substantive.

The weather events of this week are part of our evolving climate. The extreme rains, the drought and fires are too closely aligned to what we expect from climate change to ignore. They provide us with examples of weather, climate, vulnerability and impacts. They demand our short-term and long-term response. Looking at the cars crashing into the ravine in Baltimore, we are reminded that neglect of infrastructure will become more vulnerable to extreme weather events. And, if weather events that are extreme relative to weather for which infrastructure is designed are becoming more frequent, then separation of climate, climate change and vulnerability into their own little cubbyholes of cause and effect denies how we are intertwined with our climate and climate change.

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390. PensacolaDoug
10:42 AM GMT on May 12, 2014
Quoting 381. Neapolitan:



"Oh, look; the icecap has stayed within the standard deviation this summer. Oh, wait, not it hasn't. It's actually more than two standard deviations below climatology. Yikes! How could I have been so wrong? Oh, I see; my browser was open to Goddard's site, my radio was stuck on Limbaugh, and someone changed the channel to Fox. Whew..."
+ You didn't answer the question. You might wanna check you're calendar because s ummer hasn't started yet, genius.. Let's see where it bottoms out at in Sept or October. I do like how all of your lemming buddies just "plus click" any bs you put up tho..
Member Since: July 25, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 553
389. Birthmark
7:49 PM GMT on May 11, 2014
Quoting 380. PensacolaDoug:

What chu guys gonna say when the icecap stays within normal deviations this summer?

Your question is vacuous, as has been demonstrated by others. For instance, do you mean within two standard deviations of the downward trend in volume?



If that's what you mean, then what do you think we should say...aside from the melting continues?
Member Since: October 30, 2005 Posts: 7 Comments: 5469
388. WunderAlertBot (Admin)
6:54 PM GMT on May 11, 2014
RickyRood has created a new entry.
387. Xulonn
6:31 PM GMT on May 11, 2014
Edit - comment moved to Ricky's new blog entry... ...
Member Since: June 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 1422
386. Xulonn
6:23 PM GMT on May 11, 2014
Edit - comment moved to Ricky's new blog entry...
Member Since: June 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 1422
385. riverat544
5:06 PM GMT on May 11, 2014
Quoting 374. Creideiki:


The last time a group of denialists decided to do the work, we got the BEST--and a group of former denialists.

I plussed you but actually it's unfair to characterize most of the scientists who worked on BEST as denialists. It was partially funded by the Koch brothers who fit on that side of the spectrum and Judith Curry has been treading close to that territory lately but Richard Muller and the rest exhibited true scientific skepticism and were convinced by the evidence.
Member Since: March 29, 2014 Posts: 0 Comments: 79
384. Patrap
4:57 PM GMT on May 11, 2014
Is Climate Change Real? The Pentagon Sure Thinks So
BY BILL BRIGGS


U. S. military and intelligence agencies are increasingly monitoring and preparing for how, when and where the consequences of a warmer planet will collide with national security, requiring the eventual need to deploy American troops to weather-torn lands.

As climate-change arguments continue at home — including pundits who assert the scientific consensus on the issue is overblown or concocted — current and former Department of Defense officials are mapping future strategies to protect U.S. interests in the aftermath of massive floods, water shortages and famines that are expected to hit and decimate unstable nations.

“For DoD, this is a mission reality, not a political debate,” said Mark Wright, a Pentagon spokesman. “The scientific forecast is for more Arctic ice melt, more sea-level rise, more intense storms, more flooding from storm surge, and more drought.

“Those changes shape the future operating environment, help us predict missions we'll have to undertake, and create challenges and constraints on how we operate on our bases,” Wright said. “We're taking sensible measured steps to mitigate the mission risk posed by climate change.”

The White House on Tuesday released an alarming litany of current and near-term weather calamities that Americans should plan to endure due to ongoing atmospheric shifts. That report also noted: “The implications of climate change for U.S. national security are significant.” And the White House cited a 2010 Pentagon review that, for the first time, acknowledged climate change would play a “significant role in shaping the future security environment.”

But inside and outside the DoD, many experts agree U.S. national security already is being tested by massive unrest, revolts and humanitarian calamities triggered, in part, by climate change.

The civil war in Syria, which has left an estimated 100,000 people dead, has its roots in a regional drought, said retired Navy Vice Adm. Lee Gunn, now a member of the military advisory board for CNA Corporation, a non-profit research and analysis organization in Alexandria, Virginia.


more,...
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 421 Comments: 127664
383. FLwolverine
4:44 PM GMT on May 11, 2014
Quoting 382. Creideiki:



The bigger question is what would "normal deviations" mean? Normal for when? 1950? Not a chance of normal deviation for the 1950s. And we're getting to a point where "normal deviation" for the post-millenial era will me approaching 0.
Man, I'm feeling smart today! My question was going to be "deviation from what baseline"?

:-)
Member Since: January 6, 2013 Posts: 3 Comments: 2331
382. Creideiki
4:36 PM GMT on May 11, 2014
Quoting 381. Neapolitan:



"Oh, look; the icecap has stayed within the standard deviation this summer. Oh, wait, not it hasn't. It's actually more than two standard deviations below climatology. Yikes! How could I have been so wrong? Oh, I see; my browser was open to Goddard's site, my radio was stuck on Limbaugh, and someone changed the channel to Fox. Whew..."


The bigger question is what would "normal deviations" mean? Normal for when? 1950? Not a chance of normal deviation for the 1950s. And we're getting to a point where "normal deviation" for the post-millenial era will me approaching 0.
Member Since: July 10, 2013 Posts: 0 Comments: 162
381. Neapolitan
4:30 PM GMT on May 11, 2014
Quoting 380. PensacolaDoug:

What chu guys gonna say when the icecap stays within normal deviations this summer?


"Oh, look; the icecap has stayed within the standard deviation this summer. Oh, wait, not it hasn't. It's actually more than two standard deviations below climatology. Yikes! How could I have been so wrong? Oh, I see; my browser was open to Goddard's site, my radio was stuck on Limbaugh, and someone changed the channel to Fox. Whew..."
Member Since: November 8, 2009 Posts: 4 Comments: 13470
380. PensacolaDoug
4:24 PM GMT on May 11, 2014
What chu guys gonna say when the icecap stays within normal deviations this summer?
Member Since: July 25, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 553
379. yoboi
4:23 PM GMT on May 11, 2014
Well Sport I am located in louisiana not fla............
Member Since: August 25, 2010 Posts: 7 Comments: 2336
378. Patrap
4:13 PM GMT on May 11, 2014
"Tin Soldiers and Nixon's coming,
Were finally on our own
This Summer I heard the calling
4 dead in Ohio"
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 421 Comments: 127664
377. no1der
3:44 PM GMT on May 11, 2014
Memorandum from Daniel Patrick Moynihan to John Ehrlichman

The White House

Sept. 17 1969

"As with so many of the more interesting environmental questions, we really don't have very satisfactory measurements of the carbon dioxide problem. On the other hand, this very clearly *is* a problem, and most particularly, is one that can seize the imagination of persons normally indifferent to projects [sic] of apocalyptic change.

The process is a simple one. Carbon dioxide in the atmosphere has the effect of a pane of glass in a greenhouse. The CO2 content is normally in a stable cycle, but recently man has begun to introduce instability through the burning of fossil fuels. At the turn of the century several persons raised the question of whether this would change the temperature of the atmosphere."
Member Since: June 5, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 527
376. Birthmark
12:56 PM GMT on May 11, 2014
Quoting 374. Creideiki:



The last time a group of denialists decided to do the work, we got the BEST--and a group of former denialists.

Well, except for Curry.
Member Since: October 30, 2005 Posts: 7 Comments: 5469
375. pcola57
12:45 PM GMT on May 11, 2014
Brothers Battle Climate Change on Two Fronts

Member Since: August 13, 2009 Posts: 13 Comments: 6774
374. Creideiki
12:22 PM GMT on May 11, 2014
Quoting 372. ScottLincoln:


They never do the work themselves. Always just go on and on about what they think other people should do, and all the things wrong with everyone else's work. This alone makes me incredibly skeptical. If they feel so strongly that the methodology is inadequate, then they can alter the methodology and put their results in a peer reviewed journal article. I think it's time for them to actually do the work. I think it's time for them to put up or shut up.


The last time a group of denialists decided to do the work, we got the BEST--and a group of former denialists.
Member Since: July 10, 2013 Posts: 0 Comments: 162
373. Patrap
12:33 AM GMT on May 11, 2014

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) argues that President Obama's proposals to regulate carbon emissions "would have a devastating effect on our economy" without solving the climate change problem. (Joe Raedle / Getty Images)


The GOP does the climate change dance

May 10, 2014 5:00am

Last week, the White House issued a new and alarming edition of its national report on climate change. How did leading Republicans respond?

Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), the GOP's leader in the Senate, scoffed at President Obama for "talking about the weather," dismissing the issue as a hobbyhorse of "liberal elites who leave a giant carbon footprint and then lecture everybody else about low-flow toilets."

After pointing out that the president is "not a meteorologist," Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) argued that Obama's proposals to regulate carbon emissions "would have a devastating effect on our economy" without solving the problem.

And Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.) said the central issue wasn't climate change but cost-benefit analysis. Asked whether he thought global warming had been caused by human activity, Thune said: "I'm not denying that. I'm simply saying that the debate ought to be: What are we going to do about it, and at what cost?"

Perhaps this counts as progress. They weren't calling climate change a hoax, as many conservatives once did (and some still do). They're not even challenging the scientific consensus that human activity has contributed to the warming of the Earth (although some still contest that finding too).

Why the shift?


Polls have found that most Americans are worried about global warming, except for one group tea party conservatives. A Pew Research Poll conducted last year found that only 25% of tea party adherents believe climate change is real, against 61% of non-tea party Republicans (and 84% of Democrats).

That puts the GOP in a bind, caught between its most zealous conservative supporters and the broader majorities it'll need to win elections.

More worrisome for the GOP, younger voters are even more convinced that climate change is a big problem and they're going to be around longer than their grandparents.

And, remarkably, almost two-thirds of Americans, including about half of Republicans, favor stricter limits on emissions from power plants, the centerpiece of Obama's regulatory agenda.


"In the short term, it's politically smart for Republican politicians to express doubts about climate change because that responds to what their base wants," said Sherwood Boehlert, a moderate former GOP congressman from upstate New York who chaired the House Science and Technology Committee for six years until 2007. "But public opinion is moving forward, and that won't be good for the deniers."

In the not-too-distant past, the Republican Party's platform actually listed global warming as a national problem and cited "human activity" among its causes. But that was 2008, when Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) was the nominee; even Sarah Palin, his running mate, agreed. "It's real," she said then. "We need to do something about it."


But that was before the tea party insurgency of 2010, and before Democratic proposals for cap-and-trade legislation made climate change a forbidden zone for most Republican politicians including McCain, who abandoned his earlier positions and fell in line. Last year, when Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.) proposed an amendment to ban any new federal regulation of greenhouse gases, only one Republican voted against it: Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine).

Now only a few defiant Republican moderates still argue for policies to counter climate change, including former Gov. Jon Huntsman of Utah and former Sen. Olympia Snowe of Maine. Except for Collins, they're all out of office.

Some current GOP members of Congress still deny that the problem exists, including Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Costa Mesa), who has called global warming "a total fraud" designed by "liberals who want to create global government."

Others agree that climate change is real but say they aren't certain that it's man-made and, as a result, they feel no need to fix it.

"People like me who support hydrocarbon development don't deny that climate is changing," Rep. Joe Barton (R-Texas) said last year. "If you're a believer in the Bible, one would have to say the great flood is an example of climate change, and that certainly isn't because mankind had overdeveloped hydrocarbon energy."

That argument has always struck me as odd: If climate change isn't man-made, does that mean there's no reason to try to counter its effects? Noah's flood wasn't man-made, but he still spent the money (or at least the timber) to build an ark.

But increasingly, the most popular argument among leading Republicans in Congress is a mix of all of the above maybe it's a problem, maybe it isn't plus a new talking point designed for tough economic times: Whatever the problem, it looks too expensive to fix.

"There has to be a cost-benefit analysis," Rubio said last year. "The benefit, I think, is difficult to justify. Is there anything government can do about it that will actually make a difference?"

It sounds, for a moment, as if Rubio is criticizing Obama for being too timid in his regulatory proposals. But it's really just another argument for doing nothing.

That position would carry more weight if Rubio and other Republicans had actually done the cost-benefit analysis they ask for, one that includes the costs of flooding in Miami and droughts in the Southwest as well as the price of regulating coal-burning power plants. But they haven't.

To borrow a word from a different public debate, the GOP appears to be evolving, but only in its rhetoric, not its policies. But evolution is a slow process, and if the environment changes as quickly as the scientists expect, some political species could soon become endangered.

Copyright 2014, Los Angeles Times
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 421 Comments: 127664
372. ScottLincoln
12:33 AM GMT on May 11, 2014
Quoting 327. yoboi:

[snipped link to yet another claim that the John Cook 97% consensus paper is flawed]

They never do the work themselves. Always just go on and on about what they think other people should do, and all the things wrong with everyone else's work. This alone makes me incredibly skeptical. If they feel so strongly that the methodology is inadequate, then they can alter the methodology and put their results in a peer reviewed journal article. I think it's time for them to actually do the work. I think it's time for them to put up or shut up.
Member Since: September 28, 2002 Posts: 5 Comments: 3172
371. Patrap
12:27 AM GMT on May 11, 2014

What The Science Says:

The amount of warming caused by the anthropogenic increase in atmospheric CO2 may be one of the most misunderstood subjects in climate science. Many people think the anthropogenic warming can't be quantified, many others think it must be an insignificant amount. However, climate scientists have indeed quantified the anthropogenic contribution to global warming using empirical observations and fundamental physical equations.
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 421 Comments: 127664
370. Xulonn
12:21 AM GMT on May 11, 2014
Quoting 368. PensacolaDoug:
Have another sip of the Kool-Aid, Skid.
Is that what you tell Dr. Masters to do when he attempts to enlighten us about climate science?

Is climate science the "Kool-Aid" to which you refer?
Member Since: June 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 1422
369. Birthmark
12:12 AM GMT on May 11, 2014
Quoting 368. PensacolaDoug:




Have another sip of the Kool-Aid, Skid.

See? Denialists can't even get that one right! It was Flavor-Aid. So it's little wonder that science is a mystery to denialists.

Member Since: October 30, 2005 Posts: 7 Comments: 5469
368. PensacolaDoug
12:06 AM GMT on May 11, 2014
Quoting 367. Birthmark:


Yeah, apparently he doesn't mind reattaching his butt on a daily basis after having it handed to him. You do. Different strokes, I guess.



Have another sip of the Kool-Aid, Skid.
Member Since: July 25, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 553
367. Birthmark
12:04 AM GMT on May 11, 2014
Quoting 354. PensacolaDoug:

I haven't posted here in a while and after reading thru the last 30 or so posts, it's easy to remember why.
You've got a lot more stamina than me Yoboi!

Yeah, apparently he doesn't mind reattaching his butt on a daily basis after having it handed to him. You do. Different strokes, I guess.
Member Since: October 30, 2005 Posts: 7 Comments: 5469
366. Patrap
11:50 PM GMT on May 10, 2014

Scenes of street flooding, like this one on Alton Road in Miami Beach in November, are becoming increasingly common. Credit Angel Valentin for The New York Times


Miami Finds Itself Ankle-Deep in Climate Change Debate

By CORAL DAVENPORTMAY 7, 2014


MIAMI BEACH — The sunny-day flooding was happening again. During high tide one recent afternoon, Eliseo Toussaint looked out the window of his Alton Road laundromat and watched bottle-green saltwater seep from the gutters, fill the street and block the entrance to his front door.

“This never used to happen,” Mr. Toussaint said. “I’ve owned this place eight years, and now it’s all the time.”

Down the block at an electronics store it is even worse. Jankel Aleman, a salesman, keeps plastic bags and rubber bands handy to wrap around his feet when he trudges from his car to the store through ever-rising waters.

A new scientific report on global warming released this week, the National Climate Assessment, named Miami as one of the cities most vulnerable to severe damage as a result of rising sea levels. Alton Road, a commercial thoroughfare in the heart of stylish South Beach, is getting early ripples of sea level rise caused by global warming — even as Florida’s politicians, including two possible contenders for the presidency in 2016, are starkly at odds over what to do about it and whether the problem is even real.

“The theme of the report is that climate change is not a future thing, it’s a ‘happening-now’ thing,” said Leonard Berry, a contributing author of the new report and director of the Florida Center for Environmental Studies at Florida Atlantic University. “Alton Road is one of the now things.”

Sea levels have risen eight inches since 1870, according to the new report, which projects a further rise of one to four feet by the end of the century. Waters around southeast Florida could surge up to two feet by 2060, according to a report by the Southeast Florida Regional Climate Compact. A study by the Florida Department of Transportation concluded that over the next 35 years, rising sea levels will increasingly flood and damage smaller local roads in the Miami area.

The national climate report found that although rapidly melting Arctic ice is threatening the entire American coastline, Miami is exceptionally vulnerable because of its unique geology. The city is built on top of porous limestone, which is already allowing the rising seas to soak into the city’s foundation, bubble up through pipes and drains, encroach on fresh water supplies and saturate infrastructure. County governments estimate that the damages could rise to billions or even trillions of dollars.

In and around Miami, local officials are grappling head on with the problem.

“Sea level rise is our reality in Miami Beach,” said the city’s mayor, Philip Levine. “We are past the point of debating the existence of climate change and are now focusing on adapting to current and future threats.” In the face of encroaching saltwater and sunny-day flooding like that on Alton Road, Mr. Levine has supported a $400 million spending project to make the city’s drainage system more resilient in the face of rising tides.

But while local politicians can take action to shore up their community against the rising tide, they are powerless to stop what scientists say is the heart of the problem: the increasing fossil fuel emissions that continue to warm the planet. Scientists say that the scale of emission reductions necessary to prevent the most dangerous effects of global warming can only come as a result of national and international policies to cut carbon pollution.

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In particular, climate experts say, national policies to tax or regulate carbon pollution are required by the world’s top emitters, chiefly the United States and China. Such efforts have to date met a wave of political opposition in Congress — bills aimed at putting a price on carbon pollution have repeatedly failed. President Obama plans to use his executive authority to issue a regulation that would cut carbon pollution from coal-fired power plants, but Republicans, who call the rule a “War on Coal,” want to overturn it.

Senator Bill Nelson, Democrat of Florida, supports carbon-cutting efforts, even as he acknowledges that they will come with some economic cost. In April, he convened a packed hearing at the Miami Beach City Hall on the encroaching waters.

“With sea level rise, you’ve got to get to core of the problem,” Mr. Nelson said at the hearing. “You have to lessen the amount of CO2. It’s politically treacherous and costly. But at the end of the day, something like that is going to have to get passed. Otherwise the planet is going to continue to heat up.”

But three prominent Florida Republicans — Senator Marco Rubio, former Gov. Jeb Bush and the current governor, Rick Scott — declined repeated requests to be interviewed on the subject. Mr. Rubio and Mr. Bush are viewed as potential presidential candidates. Political analysts say the reluctance of the three men to speak publicly on the issue reflects an increasingly difficult political reality for Republicans grappling with the issue of climate change, particularly for the party’s lawmakers from Florida. In acknowledging the problem, politicians must endorse a solution, but the only major policy solutions to climate change — taxing or regulating the oil, gas and coal industries — are anathema to the base of the Republican Party. Thus, many Republicans, especially in Florida, appear to be dealing with the issue by keeping silent.

“Jeb likes to take positions on hot-button issues, the same with Rubio,” said Joseph E. Uscinski, a political scientist at the University of Miami. “On immigration they are further mainstream on that than the rest of the G.O.P. But on this, Republicans are dead set against taking action on climate change on the national level. If you have political aspirations, this is not something you should talk about if you want to win a Republican primary.”

Over the past year, Mr. Rubio has signaled his skepticism about the established science that fossil fuel emissions contribute to climate change. When asked in a 2013 Buzzfeed webcast interview if climate change posed a threat to Florida, Mr. Rubio responded: “The climate is always changing. The question is, is manmade activity what’s contributing most to it?” He added that “I’ve seen reasonable debate on that principle” and “if we unilaterally impose these sorts of things on our economy it would have a devastating impact.”

But in 2008, while serving in the Florida State Legislature, Mr. Rubio supported a bill directing the State Department of Environmental Protection to develop rules for companies to limit carbon emissions.

As governor from 1999 to 2007, Mr. Bush pushed several environmental initiatives, particularly efforts to protect Everglades National Park, which scientists say is highly vulnerable to encroaching seawaters. Political scientists say that Mr. Rubio’s shift and Mr. Bush’s current silence on the issue appear to reflect the position of lawmakers who are mulling transitions from the state to the national stage and the realities of satisfying their party’s base in the 2016 primaries.

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 421 Comments: 127664
365. PensacolaDoug
10:52 PM GMT on May 10, 2014
Quoting 364. Naga5000:



I believe they make a pill for that Doug. AIn't technology grand?


Better living thru chemistry!
Member Since: July 25, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 553
364. Naga5000
10:45 PM GMT on May 10, 2014
Quoting 354. PensacolaDoug:

I haven't posted here in a while and after reading thru the last 30 or so posts, it's easy to remember why.
You've got a lot more stamina than me Yoboi!


I believe they make a pill for that Doug. AIn't technology grand?
Member Since: June 1, 2010 Posts: 4 Comments: 3306
363. JohnLonergan
10:31 PM GMT on May 10, 2014
"You all can have a conference if needed to debate the simple facts.....Have a great day....School will be in session later......Yoboi is going to bring the A game later....."



Says the guy who finished last in his class at Ding Dong School.
Member Since: June 27, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 3181
362. schwankmoe
10:01 PM GMT on May 10, 2014
Quoting JohnLonergan:


But that one little, tiny neutron causes the long-term trend in carbon isotope ratio (13C/12C) of the CO2.
:



This is absolutely diagnostic of the atmospheric combustion of 12C-rich fossil biological carbon.


that may be true, but have you seen al gore's house? checkmate!
Member Since: October 18, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 676
361. schwankmoe
9:59 PM GMT on May 10, 2014
Quoting yoboi:
well i need to go run crawfish traps......I will be back later to provide the science AGAIN that shows humans can't impact the climate more than 10 %......You all can have a conference if needed to debate the simple facts.....Have a great day....School will be in session later......Yoboi is going to bring the A game later.....


"just gotta find where i put those legos..."
Member Since: October 18, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 676
360. JohnLonergan
9:19 PM GMT on May 10, 2014
Quoting 357. Patrap:

Talking about carbon-12 and carbon-13 is gonna throw some folks off in a Huge way me tinks too.

: P






But that one little, tiny neutron causes the long-term trend in carbon isotope ratio (13C/12C) of the CO2.
:



This is absolutely diagnostic of the atmospheric combustion of 12C-rich fossil biological carbon.
Member Since: June 27, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 3181
359. Patrap
9:03 PM GMT on May 10, 2014
We are a flexible and innovative species
and we have the capacity to adapt and modify our behavior
Now, we most certainly have to do so if we're to deal with climate change.
It's the biggest challenge we have yet faced.


David Attenborough




We're talking about something
That affects the entire Earth
Problems that transcend nations.


Isaac Asimov
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 421 Comments: 127664
358. Daisyworld
8:45 PM GMT on May 10, 2014
Quoting 357. Patrap:

Talking about carbon-12 and carbon-13 is gonna throw some folks off in a Huge way me tinks too...


It's really not that hard to understand:

Member Since: January 11, 2012 Posts: 6 Comments: 852
357. Patrap
8:21 PM GMT on May 10, 2014
Talking about carbon-12 and carbon-13 is gonna throw some folks off in a Huge way me tinks too.

: P



Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 421 Comments: 127664
356. Patrap
8:16 PM GMT on May 10, 2014
All Science Is Wrong, Concludes Esteemed Fox News Panel

By Jonathan ChaitFollow @jonathanchait


Some may blog here from this story me thinks.

There is no issue where educated ignorance is on more perfect display than watching the conservative movement confront scientific evidence of climate change. Educated ignorance is not the same thing as the regular kind of ignorance. It takes real talent to master. George F. Will and Charles Krauthammer are two of the intellectual giants of the right, former winners of the Bradley Foundation's $250,000 annual prize, Washington Post columnists, and Fox News All-Star panelists. They numbered among the select conservative intellectuals chosen to dine with newly elected president Barack Obama in 2009.

On their Fox News All-Star Panel appearance this week, both men discussed the U.S. National Climate Assessment, which they dismissed with various irritable mental gestures. Their evasions and misstatements, clothed in faux-erudition, offer a useful entrance point to study the current state of the right-wing mind.

mucho more,...
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 421 Comments: 127664
355. FLwolverine
8:15 PM GMT on May 10, 2014
Quoting 351. Naga5000:

I go out of town for one day...but seriously, this is hilarious. Carry on!
Pathetic, no?
Member Since: January 6, 2013 Posts: 3 Comments: 2331
354. PensacolaDoug
8:11 PM GMT on May 10, 2014
I haven't posted here in a while and after reading thru the last 30 or so posts, it's easy to remember why.
You've got a lot more stamina than me Yoboi!
Member Since: July 25, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 553
353. riverat544
8:07 PM GMT on May 10, 2014
Quoting 345. yoboi:


Far from it...going to show humans produce less than 10% C02 that is emitted......

It's disingenuous to ignore the other side of that equation. Humans are responsible for 0% of the carbon that is absorbed. Carbon cycles through the various stores of carbon on the Earth, the atmosphere, the oceans, the biosphere and land but the relative balance between those stores remains about the same with seasonal variations of around 10 ppm in the Northern Hemisphere. That the total amount of carbon in the carbon cycle is increasing is evident in the increase in atmospheric CO2 and in ocean acidification. Those measurable increases match well with the amount of carbon humans are emitting and an analysis of the change in isotopic concentrations of 12C and 13C shows the increase is primarily due to fossil fuel combustion. Since the start of the industrial revolution humans have emitted roughly 500 GT of carbon (1800 GT of CO2) which is a substantial increase in the total carbon in the active carbon cycle.

How we know recent CO2 increases are due to human activities.
Member Since: March 29, 2014 Posts: 0 Comments: 79
352. Patrap
8:02 PM GMT on May 10, 2014
Upton Sinclair said, "It is very hard to get a man to understand something when his livelihood depends upon him not understanding it."
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 421 Comments: 127664
351. Naga5000
7:50 PM GMT on May 10, 2014
I go out of town for one day...but seriously, this is hilarious. Carry on!
Member Since: June 1, 2010 Posts: 4 Comments: 3306
350. JohnLonergan
7:16 PM GMT on May 10, 2014


Well certain climate models show you should be able to do that in 2016...........





Two words
Member Since: June 27, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 3181
349. Patrap
6:48 PM GMT on May 10, 2014
A game?

again...?

LoL

Hard to run crawfish traps in the Fla Panhandle I bet.
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 421 Comments: 127664
348. Xulonn
6:41 PM GMT on May 10, 2014
Quoting 329. yoboi:anytime that you would like to debate the facts....just say the word.......
Openings and challengs for debate have been offered to you for about two years on this blog - and we're still waiting for you to respond with to the points made and the questions asked of you.

Why do you lie and say you want a debate, and then refuse to debate?
Member Since: June 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 1422
347. FLwolverine
6:17 PM GMT on May 10, 2014
Time to stop feeding the troll. I guess we need some interesting topics to discuss so we don't get bored and keep responding to the blather. Oh, and I'm definitely as guilty as anyone!
Member Since: January 6, 2013 Posts: 3 Comments: 2331
346. yoboi
6:03 PM GMT on May 10, 2014
well i need to go run crawfish traps......I will be back later to provide the science AGAIN that shows humans can't impact the climate more than 10 %......You all can have a conference if needed to debate the simple facts.....Have a great day....School will be in session later......Yoboi is going to bring the A game later.....
Member Since: August 25, 2010 Posts: 7 Comments: 2336
345. yoboi
5:54 PM GMT on May 10, 2014
Quoting 343. no1der:
Dick Lindzen said that people why deny that CO2 is a greenhouse gas are "nutty".
Are you nutty, Yoboi?





Far from it...going to show humans produce less than 10% C02 that is emitted......
Member Since: August 25, 2010 Posts: 7 Comments: 2336
344. FLwolverine
5:53 PM GMT on May 10, 2014
Quoting 338. yoboi:

for starters you need to understand......
When one of these conditions is satisfied, the critical value can be expressed as a t score or as a z score. To find the critical value, follow these steps.

■Compute alpha (α): α = 1 - (confidence level / 100)
■Find the critical probability (p*): p* = 1 - α/2
■To express the critical value as a z score, find the z score having a cumulative probability equal to the critical probability (p*).
■To express the critical value as a t score, follow these steps.
■Find the degrees of freedom (DF). When estimating a mean score or a proportion from a single sample, DF is equal to the sample size minus one. For other applications, the degrees of freedom may be calculated differently. We will describe those computations as they come up.
■The critical t score (t*) is the t score having degrees of freedom equal to DF and a cumulative probability equal to the critical probability (p*).
The confidence level is low with climate modles......
And this shows error margins have been expanded on climate models .... how?
Member Since: January 6, 2013 Posts: 3 Comments: 2331
343. no1der
5:52 PM GMT on May 10, 2014
Dick Lindzen said that people why deny that CO2 is a greenhouse gas are "nutty".
Are you nutty, Yoboi?

Quoting 339. yoboi:



Let's start with C02......Does C02 impact the climate????

Member Since: June 5, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 527
342. FLwolverine
5:49 PM GMT on May 10, 2014
Quoting 339. yoboi:



Let's start with C02......Does C02 impact the climate????
That's not a statement, that's a question. Please state a fact that you want to debate and provide evidence to support your position.
Member Since: January 6, 2013 Posts: 3 Comments: 2331
341. FLwolverine
5:46 PM GMT on May 10, 2014
Quoting 327. yoboi:

John Cook’s 97% consensus claim is about to go ‘pear-shaped’..........
Yeah, right. And we should be concerned because Richard Tol (who apparently can't tell a plus sign from a minus sign) says he is going to publish something in a journal he doesn't even name?

Your hero Tony must be hard up for material to be publishing such trivia. Maybe you could clue him in to some real science to discuss.
Member Since: January 6, 2013 Posts: 3 Comments: 2331
340. Daisyworld
5:46 PM GMT on May 10, 2014
Quoting 334. yoboi:



I don't know what his IQ is....So can't honestly answer that.....And I understand if you feel the need to shy away from a debate....but the offer is still there if you can except the challenge.....


Wow... Judging Neil deGrasse Tyson based on his IQ... How very prejudice...

You can always watch his program and find out about the real science behind human-induced climate change:

The Lost Worlds of Planet Earth

Otherwise, based on your past behavior here, no one should expect any honest answers from you, and we cannot expect a real debate when one side does not adhere to the facts. Since you admitted that you will not be posting any real science until 2016, there's no point to a debate.

Now, for my own sanity, I'm grabbing my parachute and bailing out of this conversation...

Member Since: January 11, 2012 Posts: 6 Comments: 852

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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.

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