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Reality, science and climate (long)
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Mark



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 1391

PostPosted: Thu Mar 19, 2009 12:35 am    Post subject: Reality, science and climate (long) Reply with quote

Except for a few reflexes like a baby's sucking reflex or the classic knee-jerk, people do not react directly to sense impressions. People have to learn to interpret sense impressions, and then react based on their learned interpretations. This learning process essentially builds an internal map or model of the external world that is unique to each person. Some parts of the internal model of the world are easier to form than others. For example, people seem to be born with special brain circuitry to recognize faces, making the whole process of interacting with other people easier to learn (for most people in which the circuits are in working order).
If you think you respond directly to what your senses "tell" you with no interpretation required, test yourself with a few simple examples.
Listen to a sample of speech in a language you don't speak or know. You can probably (though not guaranteed) tell that it is speech, but you certainly can't get any linguistic meaning out of the sounds. Depending on the nature of the speech sample and the similarity of the sample language to languages you do speak, you might get emotional content from the sample, detecting anger or joy or other strong feelings.
Now look at unknown or unfamiliar pictures, especially of unfamiliar objects or involving unusual compositions. You will probably be able to identify what objects are depicted quickly in most cases, but if you look at enough pictures, you will also almost certainly encounter some that are just incomprehensible shapes and/or colors at first glance. Some might even take several long looks before you can spot an edge or a face or a head or a limb or something that gives you a clue to separate the image into recognizable objects. Once you achieve that recognition, it will be very difficult to see the picture again as incomprehensible.
Also in the area of pictures, there are multiple techniques for letting people see images that look three-dimensional. One very common technique involves a single image (an anaglyph) with overlapping components in red and blue. If you look at this with standard vision it is just a not-very-good picture. If you look at this through special glasses with one red side and one blue side, you see an apparently 3D picture. There is another technique (stereogram?) that looks like a jumble of colors. I have to take on faith that those can be viewed as 3D pictures because I have never been able to get my eyes & brain to see anything but a jumble of colors in the examples I've looked at.
For a final example, look at a few classic optical illusions or paradoxical figures. The face-vase is a classic, as are impossible triangles, perspective drawings of cubes that visually flip depending on how you view them, or some of the art of M. C. Escher. Many such illustrations change as you focus on different parts or as you mentally change what you think you are seeing.
I believe the fact that we respond to our mental model of the world rather than responding to the world directly is at the heart of the reference to the world as an illusion in several religions and philosophies. This is often misunderstood as a denial that a real world exists. I think it is a reminder that while the real world exists, that isn't what most people "see" in normal mental states. (That also suggests the thought that at least some mental illnesses could be described as bad models of reality.)

I mentioned the importance of expectations in my essay on genre labels (last posted on the talk about novels board several weeks ago). This ties in fairly closely to the point of personal mental models. Expectations are predictions from personal mental models. Inaccurate mental models can cause trouble by creating unrealistic expectations. Gambling can be an example when the gambler expects to win despite actual statistical odds for the house. I don't know the exact nature of the false expectations involved (prices will rise forever, nobody will notice bad assets hidden in complicated portfolios, perpetrators will be rich & retired before houses of cards collapse, etc.), but the current mess in the world's financial systems is a serious reality check of whatever false expectations guided so many people in so many companies for several years. The freezing of so much credit is another affect of models and expectations--many banks are afraid to make loans now that they can no longer shuffle bad debts off to some other sucker. The bankers, along with many other people, now fear an even worse economy, creating a spiral of inaction and loss. (Fear is a negative expectation based on a mental model.) Expectations based on mental models can create self-fulfilling prophecies through reinforcing feedback loops.

Just as every person has to build a personal model of the real world to be able to function in it, science is a collective process of building models of the world. Scientists have been engaged for centuries in the process of building better models of the world.
All modern technology depends on the models of reality established by science. The Internet, the servers hosting these message boards, my connection to the Internet, the computer I'm typing on, the electrical power grid letting me run my computer, and the power plants supplying electricity to that grid all work because they are built using good enough models of reality.
I do not make any claim that the models of reality already established by science are finished or complete. Part of the scientific method is the process of testing hypotheses. A theory or model of reality is only considered useful if it lets people (or programmed computers) make predictions and/or retrodictions (also called hindcasts) that can be tested. (A retrodiction is a prediction about the past--a statement made based on a hypothesis or model or theory that can be checked against past data.) A working scientist might assess the discipline as a whole differently, but my personal view is that modern science is doing very well in the physical and biological sciences, that it has a long way to go in the social and mental sciences, and that it is severely lacking in the spiritual sciences. (In fact, I almost never see anything in the general science reporting I read about spiritual matters.)
Laws governing planetary motion provide an example of scientific models of reality. Newton's laws provide a set of equations that are a good enough model of reality to correctly describe most of the motions of most of the bodies in the solar system most of the time. Einstein gave us the added refinements of relativity theory, adding equations that handle a few conditions that Newton's laws don't get right. There are a few situations in the solar system where chaos theory is involved. Each addition since the fundamental work of Newton has been a refinement of or supplement to his equations, not invalidating them in any way.
It is always possible for a model builder to misapply scientific knowledge. In a project years ago where I wanted to work with planetary positions over more than a 26,000-year precession cycle I got some really strange planetary positions out of one iteration of the programming. I finally traced the weirdness to limitations of the precession equation I had been using, but it was a good illustration of the need for a reality-check with any model.

Climate is an incredibly complicated field of study, so no short post on the topic can be anything more than superficial. (The Teaching Company course "Earth's Changing Climate" is 12 lectures, and that is just on the narrow topic of climate change.) Completely modeling the climate of just one planet (Earth) requires understanding the Sun (total energy output, output in each frequency of the electromagnetic spectrum, particle emissions, storms, sunspots, magnetic fields), the Moon (mostly tidal effects and a little reflected light), cosmic rays from outside the solar system, and meteors (mostly dust and a little energy) as well as the Earth itself. On the Earth, it requires understanding physics (gravity, orbital and rotational motions & their changes over time, radiation belts above the atmosphere, radiation balance [reflection & absorption by every solid, liquid & gas; how changing albedo affects everything], pressure effects in solids & liquids & gases, convection, phase changes of water [evaporation, condensation, freezing, thawing, sublimating], flows of gases & liquids & solids & plasmas & particulates in gases, how the shapes of surface features affect all flows, magnetic fields, dynamics of storms, electrical or plasma effects in the ionosphere & auroras & lightning & sprites, heat and radiation effects from radioactive elements in all layers of Earth), chemistry (components & interactions of the atmosphere, oceans, continents, mantle & core), geology (contributions to atmosphere by volcanoes & geothermal sites, absorption & release of gases by rocks, effects of continental drift on existence of ice caps), biology (absorption & release of gases by all microscopic & macroscopic life, both while living and after death), technology (effects of human mechanisms and actions on all the preceding), meteorology (weather, cloud cover, storms, fogs, etc.), and probably several more things I haven't thought to list. Beyond all the factors involved in climate, there are issues with the science of chaos. The "butterfly effect" nickname for chaos comes from the observation that exact weather predictions will almost certainly never be achievable because some necessary calculations display sensitive dependence on initial conditions. You can give a range of expected results or a confidence rating with phenomena behaving in that way, but a single unambiguous answer is almost impossible. The same limitations would apply to any attempt to make exact detailed statements about future climate rather than statements with ranges of expected values.
Modern understanding of climate has developed tremendously since the development of computers with enough power to let scientists program computer models of all the factors involved (global circulation or climate models). I'm probably grossly oversimplifying, but my understanding is that the models set up as many data points (cells) as the computer's capacity will allow, plug in data for each point, then run simulations applying the equations & rules needed to describe as many of the factors mentioned above as the model can handle. The earliest models could use very few data points or equations at first, with more points allowing more detail with each generational increase in computer capacity. Each generation of model can improve in two (or more) ways. More data points allow each cell to describe a smaller portion of the Earth, which permits the model to include more details (topography, composition, life, etc.) and allows the many equations to work better. More computer capacity allows the model builders to incorporate more equations describing more contributing factors. The many factors involved do not contribute equally to climate. Some factors are much more important than others, and many factors interact in complex ways with reinforcing feedback or negating feedback or threshold triggers. Modeling started with the most obvious contributing factors and each generation of model can add weaker factors that refine the results, but the models are already beyond the level of refinement where an addition will make a big change in the development phase of working with past data. Modern climate models will probably approach within not too many more years as good a map of reality for climate as was achieved for celestial mechanics during Newton's lifetime. They also show how much more complexity science has learned to handle in a few centuries. I can run calculations of a Newtonian model of the dozen or so largest bodies in the solar system with a few constants and equations on a home computer. A climate model requires incredibly complex programming and masses of data on a supercomputer (a site listed below does have a cut-down subset for home computers). All climate models are tested & validated by running them for past times to be sure they make good retrodictions before running them for future times to make projections or predictions. Even 20 years ago the model Hansen used was good enough to make projections close to the actual measurements taken in this decade. The only valid basis for challenging the good fit to data (reality) achieved by GCMs is some other model with an even better fit to the data (reality)--anyone who can ignore all that work or dismiss it because of religion, ideology or self-interest is living in a cave (Paleolithic or Platonic, take your pick).
Greenhouse gases are so labeled because adding more of them to the atmosphere acts on the Earth just like putting up glass to build a greenhouse. More greenhouse gases in the atmosphere cause more incoming energy to stay, causing overall warming. Carbon dioxide, methane, and several other more complicated molecules all act as greenhouse gases. They are a major focus of attention both because past human activity has released them into the atmosphere and because they are one of the few factors affecting climate that deliberate human action CAN change in the near future. The opportunity for people to act is a classic illustration of the phrase "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure". The longer action is delayed, the more costly action becomes. Hurricane Katrina's disastrous flooding of New Orleans could have been prevented by better engineering of levees before the storm. Since the better engineering didn't happen, we have a devastated city that is still a mess over four years after the storm. Acting on climate is like rebuilding levees in New Orleans on a larger scale--act in time and you save a lot of lives and property, fail to act and you face massive loss of life and a huge repair bill.
Some uncertainty in the projections from climate models comes from factors I listed (or others I missed) above that are not yet incorporated into all models. Another uncertainty relates to the very conservative assumptions used in most projections, especially those from the ipcc. If the assumption that no component will drastically or suddenly shift turns out wrong, the situation could get much worse much faster. Most of the variations in the projections come from the use of different assumptions about future human actions. Optimistic projections assume people will wake up and take drastic action, leading to slowing increases in CO2 and temperature. (Worth repeating: the most optimistic outcome is a slowing of global warming, not an end or reversal any time within many years.) Less optimistic projections based on people continuing to act unthinkingly lead to scenarios rather hostile to human civilization as we know it.
The term "global warming" is used as shorthand for a very complicated process. The overall average temperature of Earth's atmosphere is increasing, so the term is accurate to an extent, but the whole process might better be called global climate destabilization. More overall energy in the atmosphere leads to more extreme weather of all kinds (hot, cold, hurricanes, droughts, floods, etc.), not just a gentle general warming. For a visual analogy, think of bringing a pot of water to a boil (by adding heat, just as is happening to our atmosphere)--at room temperature, there is little visible motion, but at a full boil there is a huge amount of bubbling and other motion.
Beyond the destabilization of weather, the warming aspect of the climate changes predicted by climate models has a couple already measured effects. It is melting both Arctic and Antarctic ice caps at rates unprecedented in recorded human history, which will lead to rises in sea level. The exact amount that sea levels will rise and the speed at which it will happen is still being argued, but the increased polar melting is already happening. In the rest of the world, climate change has already affected many habitats, causing plants to bloom and animals to breed at different dates, causing other animals to move their ranges when they can, and squeezing other plants and animals out completely when their ecological zones move and they can't move or adapt fast enough. Crop plants are not exempt from these problem, so problems with future food supplies can be expected.

On the 10th I posted a link to a Science News article about projected sea levels and the Maldives and Kiribati. Sharon w posted a link to an article about Maldives local conditions. The local conditions article essentially says that since the Maldives experienced sea levels about 1/2 meter higher than now only about a millennium ago, a sea level rise of 1/2 meter as projected by the ipcc in 2001 is nothing to worry about.
That article does not change any conclusions of the Science News article. The 2001 ipcc sea level values are extremely conservative. The Science News article is discussing more recent and less conservative projections with possible sea level rises up to several meters. (Projecting to 2100 gives a convenient benchmark used in many projections, but nobody thinks changes will magically stop on that date. All projections without assumptions of major greenhouse gas abatement lead to even grimmer futures beyond that benchmark.) The local 1/2 meter dip would not save the Maldives if any of the higher projections are right. Since I've never seen the innards of a GCM, I don't know if the extra Indian Ocean evaporation mentioned in the article is already incorporated in the current generation (since the article is several years old, it might be), but this is exactly the kind of greater detail I said above improves each new GCM.
The Science News article also mentions that Kiribati is already dealing with increased flooding & other effects. Now. Real observations. Not projections.

Since I'm in my 50s and have no known children, nieces or nephews, most of the worst impacts of climate change are not expected soon enough to strongly affect anyone I know well. I still urge strong action because I don't find the thought of humanity regressing to a new age of "nasty, brutish and short" lives appealing.

On a side note, I don't understand why some people talk as if the concept of global warming is a conspiracy invented by Al Gore. I could understand castigating Gore for running such a poor campaign in 2000 as to allow W to occupy the White House, but AFAIK Gore's contribution to the climate debate is simply popularizing. He made a movie a few years ago that brought it to the attention of a lot of people who had previously ignored it, but the science has been around for years for anyone who pays attention. Just as one example, James Hansen testified to Congress in 1988 about global warming. The Kyoto Protocol is an international agreement about limit greenhouse gases that was adopted in 1997, and it was partially a follow-up of a big 1992 international meeting. Politicians in the U.S. and other countries have blocked action on the Kyoto Protocol for a decade now, making any solution more difficult and expensive.

Returning from the collective reality models of science to the individual reality models I started with, the personal nature of each model of reality has a major impact on communication and learning. New knowledge must build on or be acceptable to a person's model of reality or it stands almost no chance of being accepted. As Plato's allegory of the cave reminds us, trying to teach anyone something contrary to their current beliefs is more likely to achieve hostility than learning. If someone is raised in a culture that devalues science, citing the realities of science will never convince them of anything. Kuhn's material on scientific revolutions makes a similar point, arguing that many advances in knowledge require the old guard who think otherwise to die off.
At the level of the individual, the limiting case of bad modeling of reality can be death. Long ago the proximate cause would have been starvation, disease, losing a competition with some large animal, or some other basic survival problem. In the modern world fatal accidents are much more prevalent. ("I'm strong / fast / sober / alert / etc. enough to handle this situation / these driving conditions / this job.") Unfortunately, we now live in a world where one person's bad modeling of reality can lead to many deaths beyond their own (like the many traffic accidents that kill multiple drivers). The climate situation is an extreme case of this phenomenon. If enough people continue business as usual long enough, all people will suffer. This is a case where natural selection will operate at the species level rather than the individual level--if our species collectively isn't smart enough to deal with reality, we will join the dinosaurs as fossils (though dinosaurs lasted much longer than humans have so far).
Despite the difficulties, learning does still happen. Sometimes the 10th or 100th rewording of a topic finds a match in a person's model of reality and they are finally able to learn about the topic. The faint hope of that is why I was willing to spend hours working on this post.

Figures and suggested reading (there is lots more data on most of the host sites than just the pages linked here):

Here is a graph of CO2 concentrations for a few recent centuries (trend: rising):
http://cdiac.ornl.gov/trends/co2/graphics/siple-gr.gif

Here is a graph of over 150 years of global temperatures (trend: rising):
http://www.cru.uea.ac.uk/cru/data/temperature/nhshgl.gif

Here is a graph of 30 years of arctic sea ice (trend: falling):
http://nsidc.org/images/arcticseaicenews/200903_Figure3.png

Here is a graph of changes to glaciers (trend: more retreating than advancing):
http://www.grid.unep.ch/glaciers/img/5-1.jpg

Here is a UK site with lots of weather & climate change info for anyone claiming to distrust US sources:
http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/

Here is a site with lots of experts & comments:
http://www.realclimate.org/
This is just one page of many within the above site that gives some idea of how complex some climate questions are (in this case, possible sea level rise):
http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2007/03/the-ipcc-sea-level-numbers/

Here is a site for anyone with idle computer time who wants to actually make a constructive contribution to climate science:
http://www.climateprediction.net/

UK Treasury Review Report on the Economics of Climate Change:
http://www.hm-treasury.gov.uk/stern_review_report.htm
(The short version: doing nothing about climate will cost 5% to 20% of global GDP per year while acting will cost 1%.)

Here is a site that goes beyond science to get into policy issues:
http://www.pewclimate.org/

Lots of statistics about energy use:
http://www.iea.org/Textbase/stats/index.asp
http://www.eia.doe.gov/emeu/aer/
http://www.eia.doe.gov/iea/

If you want official US EPA greenhouse gas data:
http://www.epa.gov/climatechange/emissions/index.html

Here is a lot about energy alternatives:
http://ec.europa.eu/energy/index_en.htm
http://www.nrel.gov/

A greenhouse stabilization proposal:
http://www.princeton.edu/~cmi/resources/stabwedge.htm

This describes a very recent meeting, one theme of which is that the situation is getting worse even faster than most people expected even a few years ago:
http://www.voanews.com/english/2009-03-12-voa18.cfm

A recent show I happened to hear about melting glaciers:
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=102041024

James Hansen June 23, 2008 to Congress (20 years after 1988 testimony):
http://www.worldwatch.org/node/5798
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LisaW



Joined: 05 Apr 2007
Posts: 173

PostPosted: Thu Mar 19, 2009 3:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Man Made Global warming -- good for taking money out of your pocket.

$750 billion "green" investment could revive economy: U.N.
http://www.reuters.com/article/environmentNews/idUSTRE52I09T20090319?feedType=RSS&feedName=environmentNews&rpc=22&sp=true

The synopsis: The UN will tax oil to raise money. Yeah. That's a bunch I'd trust with lots of money.


Antarctic Ice May Melt, But Not For Millennia (NPR!!!)
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=102066621

Quote:

"The main reason that it collapsed in the past is the ocean has gotten warmer around the periphery of Antarctica, increasing the rate of melting of these floating ice shelves which fringe West Antarctica," Pollard says.



Wait a minute -- it's melted before??? I thought it was what man was doing now that was causing the problem.

Oh, yeah, the article streams toward "The Sky is falling!!!" but little snippets keep showing up like:

Quote:
That's because there's now a clear history showing this massive ice sheet has melted before, under conditions that the Earth may soon experience. And while the full effect may not unfold for thousands of years, it would transform the planet into a place we would not recognize today.



Sooooo ... there's been climate change in the past. Yeah, we can agree on that. It's been catastropic. Yeah. But it was not man made -- not enough men around then to do it! So, maybe, just maybe, climate change, warmer, colder, drier, wetter, whatever, is *gasp* normal and natural. Course, if everyone accepted that, who would the likes of Al Gore get to buy their "carbon credits."


George Will, Washington Post
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/02/13/AR2009021302514.html

Quote:
A corollary of Murphy's Law ("If something can go wrong, it will") is: "Things are worse than they can possibly be." Energy Secretary Steven Chu, an atomic physicist, seems to embrace that corollary but ignores Gregg Easterbrook's "Law of Doomsaying": Predict catastrophe no sooner than five years hence but no later than 10 years away, soon enough to terrify but distant enough that people will forget if you are wrong.


Quote:
In the 1970s, "a major cooling of the planet" was "widely considered inevitable" because it was "well established" that the Northern Hemisphere's climate "has been getting cooler since about 1950" (New York Times, May 21, 1975). Although some disputed that the "cooling trend" could result in "a return to another ice age" (the Times, Sept. 14, 1975), others anticipated "a full-blown 10,000-year ice age" involving "extensive Northern Hemisphere glaciation" (Science News, March 1, 1975, and Science magazine, Dec. 10, 1976, respectively). The "continued rapid cooling of the Earth" (Global Ecology, 1971) meant that "a new ice age must now stand alongside nuclear war as a likely source of wholesale death and misery" (International Wildlife, July 1975). "The world's climatologists are agreed" that we must "prepare for the next ice age" (Science Digest, February 1973). Because of "ominous signs" that "the Earth's climate seems to be cooling down," meteorologists were "almost unanimous" that "the trend will reduce agricultural productivity for the rest of the century," perhaps triggering catastrophic famines (Newsweek cover story, "The Cooling World," April 28, 1975). Armadillos were fleeing south from Nebraska, heat-seeking snails were retreating from Central European forests, the North Atlantic was "cooling down about as fast as an ocean can cool," glaciers had "begun to advance" and "growing seasons in England and Scandinavia are getting shorter" (Christian Science Monitor, Aug. 27, 1974).


Quote:
Speaking of experts, in 1980 Paul Ehrlich, a Stanford scientist and environmental Cassandra who predicted calamitous food shortages by 1990, accepted a bet with economist Julian Simon. When Ehrlich predicted the imminent exhaustion of many nonrenewable natural resources, Simon challenged him: Pick a "basket" of any five such commodities, and I will wager that in a decade the price of the basket will decline, indicating decreased scarcity. Ehrlich picked five metals -- chrome, copper, nickel, tin and tungsten -- that he predicted would become more expensive. Not only did the price of the basket decline, the price of all five declined.

An expert Ehrlich consulted in picking the five was John Holdren, who today is President Obama's science adviser. Credentialed intellectuals, too -- actually, especially -- illustrate Montaigne's axiom: "Nothing is so firmly believed as what we least know."



It was 1988, IIRC, when that great climatologist Ted Danson said we only had 10 (or was it 20??) years before it would be too late ... well????

http://www.libertypundit.com/2009/01/18/ted-danson-anyone/

You think the Brits are falling for this? I see Mark quoted some UK sites. How about a court ruling in the United Kingdom " barring the showing of Al Gore's "An Inconvenient Truth" in public schools without an explicit disclaimer that it is "partisan," "political" and is riddled with misleading exaggerations and factual errors

http://www.worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=59066

Quote:
Here's what the UK court singled out as falsehoods in the movie:

* that sea levels will rise 20 feet in the foreseeable future due to ice melts;

* that people are evacuating Pacific island nations because of rising sea levels;

* that the "oceanic conveyor" belt is in danger of shutting down and triggering a new ice age;

* that rising atmospheric carbon dioxide levels have historically caused temperatures to rise;

* that global warming is causing a retreat of Mount Kilimanjaro's alpine glacier;

* that global warming is causing Africa's Lake Chad to dry up;

* that global warming contributed to Hurricane Katrina;

* that polar bears are dying due to receding sea ice;

* that global warming is causing coral reefs to bleach and die.


Here's some more detail:

http://www.newparty.co.uk/articles/inaccuracies-gore.html

Quote:
In order for the film to be shown, the Government must first amend their Guidance Notes to Teachers to make clear that 1.) The Film is a political work and promotes only one side of the argument. 2.) If teachers present the Film without making this plain they may be in breach of section 406 of the Education Act 1996 and guilty of political indoctrination. 3.) Nine inaccuracies have to be specifically drawn to the attention of school children.

The inaccuracies are:

* The film claims that melting snows on Mount Kilimanjaro evidence global warming. The Government’s expert was forced to concede that this is not correct.
* The film suggests that evidence from ice cores proves that rising CO2 causes temperature increases over 650,000 years. The Court found that the film was misleading: over that period the rises in CO2 lagged behind the temperature rises by 800-2000 years.
* The film uses emotive images of Hurricane Katrina and suggests that this has been caused by global warming. The Government’s expert had to accept that it was “not possible” to attribute one-off events to global warming.
* The film shows the drying up of Lake Chad and claims that this was caused by global warming. The Government’s expert had to accept that this was not the case.
* The film claims that a study showed that polar bears had drowned due to disappearing arctic ice. It turned out that Mr Gore had misread the study: in fact four polar bears drowned and this was because of a particularly violent storm.
* The film threatens that global warming could stop the Gulf Stream throwing Europe into an ice age: the Claimant’s evidence was that this was a scientific impossibility.
* The film blames global warming for species losses including coral reef bleaching. The Government could not find any evidence to support this claim.
* The film suggests that sea levels could rise by 7m causing the displacement of millions of people. In fact the evidence is that sea levels are expected to rise by about 40cm over the next hundred years and that there is no such threat of massive migration.
* The film claims that rising sea levels has caused the evacuation of certain Pacific islands to New Zealand. The Government are unable to substantiate this and the Court observed that this appears to be a false claim.

Not all of the inaccuracies in the film were fully considered by the court as the judge requested a sample on which to consider the case. Professor Carter's witness statement (reproduced below) lists 20 inaccuracies in the film.



I lived through "the sky is falling!" in the 1970's when we were faced with "The New Ice Age." Now it's "global warming." Guess what? The planet has climate. It changes. Constantly. How much money you can make from the change depends on how many like Mark you can find to fall for your schtick.
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Mark



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 1391

PostPosted: Thu Mar 19, 2009 11:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'll keep this short: only one reference from LisaW about is from a scientist about the science. The rest contribute only hot air. In fact, George Will is mentioned on realclimate as a particularly egregious distorter and I already said Gore is a popularizer, not an expert. The scientific (npr) reference is about an Antarctic ice sheet, the melting of which would add MANY feet to sea levels. That particular melt isn't needed for the alarming rise many people are discussing.
As for climate change happening before, Earth's history has included the whole gamut from global ice ages ("snowball Earth") to periods of no ice at all. On long (many millions of years) time scales, Earth has done it all.
The point shown clearly by the real climate science for anyone willing to read it undistorted it that HUMAN ACTIVITY IS SPEEDING UP THE WARMING PROCESS, making it happen at a disastrous rate.
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LisaW



Joined: 05 Apr 2007
Posts: 173

PostPosted: Fri Mar 20, 2009 11:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mark wrote:
I'll keep this short: only one reference from LisaW about is from a scientist about the science. The rest contribute only hot air. In fact, George Will is mentioned on realclimate as a particularly egregious distorter and I already said Gore is a popularizer, not an expert. The scientific (npr) reference is about an Antarctic ice sheet, the melting of which would add MANY feet to sea levels. That particular melt isn't needed for the alarming rise many people are discussing.
As for climate change happening before, Earth's history has included the whole gamut from global ice ages ("snowball Earth") to periods of no ice at all. On long (many millions of years) time scales, Earth has done it all.
The point shown clearly by the real climate science for anyone willing to read it undistorted it that HUMAN ACTIVITY IS SPEEDING UP THE WARMING PROCESS, making it happen at a disastrous rate.


You either ignore or call it immaterial -- but

WHAT HUMAN ACTIVITY IS CAUSING THE SPEEDING UP OF THE WARMING PROCESS ON MARS???

Mark, look at the news. More and more qualified scientists (climatologists) are speaking up that man is not the cause of global warming. The sky is not falling now any more than it was falling in 1970 or will be falling in 2025 when the new boogey will be too much grassland or something equally ridiculous. Without the scare tactics, there's no big money grants.
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LisaW



Joined: 05 Apr 2007
Posts: 173

PostPosted: Sun Mar 22, 2009 2:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I wouldn't normally respond to myself -- but I thought this was worth sharing and putting this topic back up in the que.

Oops!

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/columnists/christopherbooker/5028380/The-Global-Warming-Three-are-on-thin-ice.html

Quote:


The 'Global Warming Three' are on thin ice

The ony problem with a project to prove that Arctic ice is disappearing is the fact that it is actually getting thicker, says Christopher Booker.

What a wonderful parable of our time has been the expedition to the North Pole led by the explorer Pen Hadow. With two companions, he is measuring the thickness of the ice to show how fast it is “declining”. His expedition is one of a series of events designed to “raise awareness of the dangers of climate change” before December’s conference in Copenhagen, where the warmists hope to get a new treaty imposing much more drastic cuts on CO2 emissions.

Hadow’s Catlin Arctic Project has top-level backing from the likes of the BBC, the WWF (it could “make a lasting difference to policy-relevant science”) and Prince Charles (“for the sake of our children and grandchildren, I pray that we will heed the results of the Catlin Arctic Survey and I can only commend this remarkably important project”).

With perfect timing, the setting out from Britain of the “Global Warming Three” last month was hampered by “an unusually heavy snowfall”. When they were airlifted to the start of their trek by a twin-engine Otter (one hopes a whole forest has been planted to offset its “carbon footprint”), they were startled to find how cold it was. The BBC dutifully reported how, in temperatures of minus 40 degrees, they were “battered by wind, bitten by frost and bruised by falls on the ice”.
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The idea is that the expedition should take regular radar fixes on the ice thickness, to be fed into a computer model in California run by Professor Wieslaw Maslowski, whose team, according to the BBC, “is well known for producing results that show much faster ice-loss than other modelling teams”. The professor predicts that summer ice could be completely gone as early as next year. It took the Watts Up With That? science blog to point out that there is little point in measuring ice thickness unless you do it several years running, and that, anyway, Arctic ice is being constantly monitored by US Army buoys. The latest reading given by a typical sensor shows that since last March the ice has thickened by “at least half a metre”.

“In most fields of science,” comments WUWT drily, “that is considered an 'increase’ rather than a 'decline’.”


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Mark



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PostPosted: Wed Mar 25, 2009 12:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It took a few days before I could get to fact checking the latest posts.
On the climate on Mars, this says it much more authoritatively than I could:
http://www.realclimate.org/index.php?p=192
What it boils down to is that data distorters have grabbed hold of a speculation about Mars by one scientist to try to confuse the picture.
Even if the Mars climate speculation was right, it would indeed be irrelevant to an analysis of Earth climate. Weather and climate on other planets can be used for analogies, which can sometimes help thinking, but they do not provide directly useful data for the whole climate modeling process I described before.

On Arctic sea ice, the distorter quoted is slicker. I had to read the linked column twice to see that the columnist was not citing ANY data results from the expedition going on right now. The WEATHER the expedition is facing is mixed with a reference to other data (it was still winter in the Northern Hemisphere until a couple days ago, and even spring in the Arctic is no picnic).
It took a little poking around to find the real ice buoy data.
This is about one ice mass balance buoy:
http://imb.crrel.usace.army.mil/2006Csum.htm
This is a summary of ice melt data from many buoys:
http://imb.crrel.usace.army.mil/allmelt.htm
This is a summary of the whole sea ice issue:
http://nsidc.org/sotc/sea_ice.html
This shows ice extent maps from several recent years:
http://imb.crrel.usace.army.mil/review.htm
This discusses a recent satellite sensor failure that is already being grabbed as another talking point by data distorters:
http://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/2009/022609.html
What it boils down to is that the CLIMATE trend is consistent with all the science confirming global warming. Within the long-term climate trend there are year-to-year variations in WEATHER that fluctuate more. The buoy data for ONE year was made to sound like a long-term trend by the columnist. See the links above for the real long-term trend. Several of the sites I cited (or links from them) go into more detail, but basically more ice is melting, which causes even more rapid heating because water reflects less than ice.
The expedition now in progress has produced NO results yet. When they do get their data in, it can be used to integrate with and calibrate satellite sensor data. Since this is a single expedition, it can provide no year-to-year or long-term values.

I really don't understand why so many people fight tooth-and-nail against the whole concept of anthropogenic climate change. To me, the aspect of human causation makes a more empowering model than that of the data distorters. Early stages of warming are already there in recent past data--see the links in the opening post of this thread. If that warming was entirely from natural causes it would mean that humanity is heading into a climatic catastrophe with no ability to fix anything. The anthropogenic greenhouse gases explanation points to ACTIONS people can take to ameliorate the catastrophe.
Is it the planetary scale that make warming deniers balk? If so, what scale is the threshold for consequences of human actions?
Heat islands changing local weather around cities?
Extinctions of ancient American megafauna (with humans either contributing to or directly causing the extinctions, depending on who you ask)?
Extinctions of many species in recent history?
Ecological effects of invasive species (which can have continental scopes): diseases, plants (like the rogue aquarium plants taking over miles of sea bottoms), mollusks (like the zebra mussels messing up lots of US waterways & works), fish, insects (e.g., Africanized bees), birds, reptiles, mammals (like the rats destroying fauna on some islands), etc.?
Deforestation on massive scales?
Desertification from bad land-use habits?
Acid rain from uncontrolled air pollution?
Growing dead zones in coastal waters due to everything humans dump in rivers?
Overfishing that caused collapses of multiple fisheries over many years?
Recent extreme overfishing that is causing rapid forced evolution to smaller fish?
Near-extinction of whales by whaling before most countries stopped?
The mass-extinction many scientists believe is now in progress due to human actions (habitat destruction, pollution, climate change, over-predation)?
Humans do not live lightly on this planet. All our actions have impacts, many totally inconceivable to the people starting any given chain of actions. Why is it so hard to believe that the consequences of human actions now reach a scale changing the atmosphere and climate of the whole world?
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LisaW



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PostPosted: Sat Mar 28, 2009 1:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mark wrote:


I really don't understand why so many people fight tooth-and-nail against the whole concept of anthropogenic climate change. To me, the aspect of human causation makes a more empowering model than that of the data distorters.



First off, because it depends on what the trends show lately that makes those into anthropogenic climate change decide if man is making it colder (60's-70's) or warmer (now). I remember very well some of the same teeth gnashers bemoaning how the Earth was cooling and we were facing "A New Ice Age" ... until temperatures rose some and suddenly it became global warming. Gee, if in the 70's we were heading for the Big Freeze, why don't we just do now what we were doing then and cool things down. Of course, that fact that 1934 still holds the record for hot, IIRC, helps add to it.

And, since the Global Warming crowd have already been shown to manipulate that data to fit their desired results, I think bringing up "data distorters" as a arguing point is light weight. These "Global Warming" advocates cannot even tell me what the weather is going to be next week accurately. Why should I believe they can predict 10 years? Wait -- weren't we told in the lates 80's "We only have twenty years!!!" If that's the case, it's too late to do anything, anyway. That's just one more instance verbalizing Gregg Easterbrook's "Law of Doomsaying": Predict catastrophe no sooner than five years hence but no later than 10 years away, soon enough to terrify but distant enough that people will forget if you are wrong. Except, oops, too many of us remember. It's the young kids on the block running around in panic.
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iluvarake



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PostPosted: Sat Mar 28, 2009 9:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

To me it all boils down to the greatest potential harm. If we make heroic efforts to reduce greenhouse gases and develop renewable energy technologies, and climate change proves NOT to be as bad as current models indicate, some economic upheaval may result but it should not have a longterm impact on future generations. However, if we do nothing and the current models are correct, our children and their children and many future generations are well and truly screwed.

Why do we keep rationalizing our right to use every drop of resources we desire in spite of the fact that doing so shortchanges others now and will in the future? What does this wastefulness gain us? Does our selfishness know no bounds?
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LisaW



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PostPosted: Sun Mar 29, 2009 1:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

iluvarake wrote:
To me it all boils down to the greatest potential harm. If we make heroic efforts to reduce greenhouse gases and develop renewable energy technologies, and climate change proves NOT to be as bad as current models indicate, some economic upheaval may result but it should not have a longterm impact on future generations. However, if we do nothing and the current models are correct, our children and their children and many future generations are well and truly screwed.

Why do we keep rationalizing our right to use every drop of resources we desire in spite of the fact that doing so shortchanges others now and will in the future? What does this wastefulness gain us? Does our selfishness know no bounds?


The problem is, Global Warming is not gearing toward finding new energy sources, it's geared toward making money. Period. Oh, yeah, the little guy sorting his garbage into recyclables, cutting back on his driving, planting his trees has a desire to help. But the big Poo-Bahs of Anthropogenic Climate Change is in it for the Power and the Money. If they were legitimate, would they have to lie about the relationship between CO2 and temperature rise? CO2 rise actually follows temperature rise (6 - 9 months later), not the other way around. If alternative energy has been so vitally important to the Democrats, why when there have been Democrat presidents with Democrat majority Congresses (Carter, Clinton) was nothing done? Instead there are calls to buy "carbon credits" which just happen to be sold by Al Gore's company.

The major problem is, the way the current Anthropogenic Climate Change is to be handled is to bring down the major Western Nation Economies while letting those nations who are still "growing" pollute as much as they like so they can catch-up. Free passes for China? For India? And, much of the third world is doing what it can to pollute. Shutting down those countries that have the ability to grow the world's food and develop new medicines to "Save the World" is going to bring the world to ruin.

What's the problem with conserving? Nothing. What's the problem with the Anthropogenic Climate Change movement? Everything.

http://wattsupwiththat.com/2008/12/17/the-co2-temperature-link/

Quote:

The CO2 - Temperature link
17 12 2008

Guest Post By Frank Lansner, civil engineer, biotechnology.

The trend difference means, that from 1979 to 2008 the CO2-rise per year compared to the global temperatures has fallen 0,5 ppm/year, or the other way around: It now takes approx. +0,15 K global temperature anomaly more to achieve the same level of CO2 rise/year as it did in 1979.

How can this be? The CO2 rise/year now takes higher temperatures to achieve?

With the human emissions rising in the time interval 1979-2008, one could imagine that it would be the other way around, that CO2 rises came with still smaller temperature rises needed. But no, its becoming “harder and harder” to make CO2 rise in the atmosphere.

So generally, the human emissions effect appears inferior to other effects in this context at least.

Which effects could hold CO2 rise/year down as we see?

The fact that we today have higher CO2 concentration in the atmosphere than in 1979 does not favour more CO2 release from the oceans. However the fact that we approx 500 million years ago had several thousand ppm CO2 in the atmosphere implies that the 385 ppm today hardly does a big difference.

My guess is, that what we see is mainly the effect of the growing biosphere.

In short: A period with higher temperatures leads to higher CO2 rises/year and thus of course after some years higher CO2 concentration in the atmosphere.

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Mark



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PostPosted: Thu Apr 02, 2009 9:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

On cooling claims, I already cited this on March 1:
http://www.sciencenews.org/view/generic/id/37590/title/Cooling_climate_‘consensus’_of_1970s_never_was
Claiming that there was a scientific consensus a few decades ago on cooling is a modern myth.

I already mentioned in the first post of this thread the limits that chaos imposes on predictions. Both weather and climate predictions are constrained by chaos, which means any predictions are probabilistic: this is expressed as x% chance of y phenomenon in a typical weather forecast. Unfortunately, the global warming problem has EXTREMELY HIGH PROBABILITY, so even though exact details will be filled in later the overall outline is very solid.

On claims of alarmism, there is this little problem called inertia. The Earth's atmosphere contains a large (relative to human scale) volume of gases interacting in incredibly complex ways as I mentioned in earlier posts. Many atmospheric interactions take YEARS to happen. If all human greenhouse gas emissions stopped instantly, the climate effects of the gases already released would take DECADES or CENTURIES to play out. This means that so-called "alarmists" could be proved right by the climate several decades from now. You can't assume actions have no consequences just because you don't see results today. It's like a smoker saying tobacco smoke isn't hurting them because they haven't yet died of cancer.
There is also the matter of tipping points or critical thresholds. (The freezing and boiling points of water being examples in everyday life.) If a critical threshold is crossed, phenomena under study can undergo sudden radical changes. There are several possible tipping points, like total melting of Greenland or Antarctic icecaps, that are not expected with the conservative assumptions used in the ipcc climate models but could become serious problems if less conservative assumptions prove true.
If you want real examples of alarmism, just look at claims that acting to fix climate will cause economic collapse used by people who fight the concept of global warming. Daily news looks to me like the status-quo crowd already caused a pretty big economic collapse.

What I have been trying to make clear from the start of this topic is the science, not the politics. Here is a brief side trip to politics. I am frankly surprised by any accomplishments for the general good by politicians given the number in all political parties in all levels of office that are swayed (when not outright owned) by the people putting up the money that elects them or by lobbyists. There are some true public servants, but there are also an awful lot of self-serving politicians. Leaving that aside and making the rather huge assumption that the majority of even Democratic politicians will act for the good of people as a whole, this has been the balance of power in Washington, DC over the last 50+ years:
House Democratic majority: 1955-1994, 2007-now
House Republican majority: 1995-2006
See http://clerk.house.gov/art_history/house_history/partyDiv.html
Senate Democratic majority: 1957-1980, 1987-1994, 2009-
(Nominally filibuster-proof 1959-1968, 1975-1978)
Senate Republican majority: 1981-1986, 1995-2000, 2003-2006
Messy Senate splits: 1955-1956, 2001-2002, 2007-2008
See http://www.senate.gov/pagelayout/history/one_item_and_teasers/partydiv.htm
Democratic Presidents: 1961-1968, 1977-1980, 1993-2000, 2009-
Republican Presidents: 1953-1960, 1969-1976, 1981-1992, 2001-2008
You can see from these dates that there was Democratic control of the Presidency, House and Senate during the years 1961-1968, 1977-1980, 1993-1994, and now. Of that time, only 1961-1968 and 1977-1978 included a nominally filibuster-proof Senate majority. Climate science was still far too young for consensus conclusions the last time before this year that one might have hoped for action from Democrats alone without Republican cooperation.

On the Wattsup site, the actual bottom-line conclusion is the opposite of what you quoted. Even with a lot of skimming it took a whole evening to read the original post and the many responses. The final conclusion is that the claim you quoted that temperature drives CO2 (with a time lag) rather than vice versa is another case of selective use of data. The initial claim took data from a limited range of years and came up with a formula that could be made to fit that data to describe a short-term feedback cycle involved in reaching new equilibrium values when atmospheric CO2 changes, an effect well-known by climate scientists and already incorporated into their calculations. Read the whole page, especially the many posts by Ferdinand Engelbeen. He demonstrated incredible patience in posting & rephrasing repeatedly over several months to get across the point that the short-term formula fails beyond a few years while the formula used by the climate scientists has been checked against and works with data for at least 400,000 years. The formula that works is based on CO2 driving temperature, a basic part of the global warming problem.
The discussion led me to a few more good graphs.
CO2 emissions & atmospheric CO2:
http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/acc_co2_1900_2004.jpg
http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/dco2_em.jpg
CO2 showing seasonal patterns:
http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/mlo_co2_seasons.jpg
Long-term CO2:
http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/law_dome_1000yr.jpg
CO2 and temperature:
http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/temp_emiss_increase.jpg
http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/lans_egbn_acc_trend.jpg
Very long-term CO2 and temperature:
http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/Vostok_trends.gif

The kind of claim in the original Wattsup post (which the discussion corrected) is why the labels of conclusion contorters, data distorters, fact fiddlers, science stretchers, etc. are appropriate for most arguments against the climate science warning of global warming.

I will try again to give a clear description of science. Science collectively builds models of the world. These models are TESTED and refined or discarded based on how well their retrodictions and predictions match real measurements of whatever aspect of the world the models are trying to describe. Fields of science grow and mature just as people do. An immature science can explore many varying models. A more mature science coalesces around one model or a small number of models that consistently provide the best match for the most data. An immature science can make radical changes in models. A more mature science generally only refines one primary model by filling in details and expanding coverage at any edges. An immature science is more open for useful contributions from dabblers and non-specialists. A more mature science is largely a field for specialists or large teams, though sometimes outsiders can still make useful contributions. An immature science can involve a small enough sum of knowledge that a newcomer can learn the whole field in a relatively short time. A mature science will usually include so much specialized knowledge that it takes many years of study to master the field, and sometimes includes so much knowledge that it has to be broken into more narrow specialties to be within the grasp of individuals. Wildly different models can be on almost equal footings in an immature science, giving mavericks and pioneers a chance to contribute. With a mature science, models radically different from the mainstream or consensus have a huge burden of proof to overcome--they have to give retrodictions and predictions as good as the consensus model for all data used to validate the consensus model AND give BETTER retrodictions and predictions of data the consensus model hasn't handled.
Perhaps an analogy can make the concept of a developing science clearer. Think of producing an image of a library or school globe as the model of reality you are trying to construct. Early attempts might focus on a reflection of the globe in a mirror or on a shadow of the globe, but eventually the focus will be on the globe itself. Early images might have only a few black-and-white pixels of detail, then a few colors, then more pixels, and so on, with each generation of image adding more pixels or more gradations of colors or both. Eventually the best single image might become a hologram or some other 3-D technology. Finally, multiple images will be used to show the globe from all sides or angles or to show a time sequence as the globe rotates. After the first few false starts looking at reflections and shadows, every image is recognizably of the same object and no image invalidates any previous image, but the clarity of each image has grown step-by-step by showing more details.
The science of modeling the Earth's climate was quite immature several decades ago, but in the past several decades the science has matured tremendously. As I said in earlier posts, there is a huge amount of detail to be filled in, but the broad framework is established. There is now a mainstream or consensus model (or set of models [GCM]), and that consensus is the source of warnings of global warming. People talking about global warming decades ago turned out to be pioneers. Now they are the mainstream of a much more mature science.

I mentioned in a March 7 post that the fossil fuel economy amounts to trillions of dollars per year. Having a bias toward idealism, I didn't follow through to a now (once pointed out) obvious corollary. I got a piece of mail recently that mentioned that people who like the status quo are spending over 1 million dollars PER DAY on Washington lobbying and political contributions to try to block any action on regulating greenhouse gases. Here is an EDF site that mentions money spent on climate change denial:
http://www.edf.org/page.cfm?tagID=12803
Here is a related EDF site giving some disinformation vs. reality checks:
http://blogs.edf.org/truthsquad/
This spending goes a long way toward explaining the volume of opposition to climate science. There probably are some people with sincere doubts, and there are unfortunately way too many people with poor understanding of science, but a huge amount of the noise is generated by people being PAID to squawk. So we have real climate scientists (of whom only an unknown subset might be good speakers to laypeople) who spend their time working on the science and paid communicators and persuaders who spend their time trying to squelch understanding of the science. With this in mind, it is actually surprising how many people do understand the dangers of business as usual.

This creates an obvious analogy to Big Tobacco and other merchants of death. It took many years, but eventually Big Tobacco sprang enough leaks for the facts to come out that those in charge of the industry had known how deadly smoking is for several decades during which they publicly denied such knowledge and did everything they could to prevent regulation of tobacco products. Now multi-million- (and billion-) dollar judgments against Big Tobacco are being upheld.
During those years of tobacco denial I heard a prominent psychologist or psychiatrist (I don't recall which he was) sometimes called a "stormy petrel" in his field claim that you could argue that cancer came from some personality factor rather than the smoking itself. More recent biochemical research into the many ways tobacco contributes to cancer definitely invalidates his claim, but when he said that in the 1970s or 1980s it was controversial but not provably wrong. I doubt that he was in the pay of Big Tobacco, but whether simply because he liked to argue or because he wanted to justify his own smoking or for other reasons I can't guess, his arguing of the point helped the Big Tobacco disinformation campaign.

It is clear that humans have widely varying levels of conscience, from followers of some religions that avoid killing anything down to the level of insects to members of some regimes that kill millions of fellow humans in deliberate genocide. I'm afraid I classify people who deliberately prevent amelioration of dangerous consequences of human actions as being toward the atrophied or stunted conscience end of the scale. I wonder how many years it will be before the fossil fuel promoters are called Big Carbon and viewed in much the same light as Big Tobacco?

As a reader of F&SF for several decades I've read a fair number of post-apocalypse stories or stories about visiting aliens trying to reconstruct what Earth's vanished civilizations might have been. I've also listened to a lot of real history since I discovered tapes from The Teaching Company several years ago. Names of historical periods are usually given by historians or archeologists living later. I have to wonder if some future (human or alien) historian will label the 20th & 21st centuries (C.E.) the Genocide & Greed Age or the Suicidal Stupidity Age.
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LisaW



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PostPosted: Fri Apr 24, 2009 12:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Man Made Global Warming is a sham, a con, an attempt to control people by taxing them for "carbon" use. Hey -- carbon dioxide is not a toxin! Sure -- too much, people die -- well guess what too much oxygen and a person dies!!

But more proof? Do not let anyone around who disagrees with Saint Al of the Carbon:

http://www.climatedepot.com/a/429/Report-Democrats-Refuse-to-Allow-Skeptic-to-Testify-Alongside-Gore-At-Congressional-Hearing

Quote:
Report: Democrats Refuse to Allow Skeptic to Testify Alongside Gore At Congressional Hearing

UK's Lord Christopher Monckton, a former science advisor to Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, claimed House Democrats have refused to allow him to appear alongside former Vice President Al Gore at a high profile global warming hearing on Friday April 24, 2009 at 10am in Washington. Monckton told Climate Depot that the Democrats rescinded his scheduled joint appearance at the House Energy and Commerce hearing on Friday. Monckton said he was informed that he would not be allowed to testify alongside Gore when his plane landed from England Thursday afternoon.

“The House Democrats don't want Gore humiliated, so they slammed the door of the Capitol in my face,” Monckton told Climate Depot in an exclusive interview. “They are cowards.”

According to Monckton, Rep. Joe Barton (R-Texas), Ranking Member on the Energy & Commerce Committee, had invited him to go head to head with Gore and testify at the hearing on Capitol Hill Friday. But Monckton now says that when his airplane from London landed in the U.S. on Thursday, he was informed that the former Vice-President had “chickened out” and there would be no joint appearance. Gore is scheduled to testify on Friday to the Subcommittee on Energy and the Environment's fourth day of hearings on the American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009. The hearing will be held in 2123 Rayburn House Office Building.

According to Monckton, House Democrats told the Republican committee staff earlier this week that they would be putting forward an unnamed 'celebrity' as their star witness Friday at a multi-panel climate hearing examining the House global warming bill. The "celebrity" witness turned out to be Gore. Monckton said the GOP replied they would respond to the Democrats' "celebrity" with an unnamed "celebrity" of their own. But Monckton claims that when the Democrats were told who the GOP witness would be, they refused to allow him to testify alongside Gore.

“The Democrats have a lot to learn about the right of free speech under the US Constitution. Congress Henry Waxman's (D-CA) refusal to expose Al Gore's sci-fi comedy-horror testimony to proper, independent scrutiny by the House minority reeks of naked fear,” Monckton said from the airport Thursday evening.

“Waxman knows there has been no 'global warming' for at least a decade. Waxman knows there has been seven and a half years' global cooling. Waxman knows that, in the words of the UK High Court judge who condemned Gore's mawkish movie as materially, seriously, serially inaccurate, 'the Armageddon scenario that he depicts is not based on any scientific view,'” Monckton explained. Monckton has previously testified before the House Committee in March. (See: Monckton: Have the courage to do nothing...US Congress told climate change is not real ) Monckton has also publicly challenged Gore to a debate. (See: Al Gore Challenged to International TV Debate on Global Warming By Lord Monckton - March 19, 2007 )

A call to the Democratic office of the House Energy and Commerce Committee seeking comment was not immediately returned Thursday night.

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Mark



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PostPosted: Fri Apr 24, 2009 6:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Monkton IS NOT A CLIMATE SCIENTIST. He is a journalist. His testimony would be as useless as Gore's--it would be hot air from laymen on both sides. See again everything I've said above about SCIENCE!

I wrote this recently when I was in a limerick mood:
Facing climate calamity
Doing naught is insanity
Yet the lovers of oil
Still do their best to foil
Efforts to save humanity.
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LisaW



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PostPosted: Sat Apr 25, 2009 11:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mark wrote:
Monkton IS NOT A CLIMATE SCIENTIST. He is a journalist. His testimony would be as useless as Gore's--it would be hot air from laymen on both sides. See again everything I've said above about SCIENCE!

I wrote this recently when I was in a limerick mood:
Facing climate calamity
Doing naught is insanity
Yet the lovers of oil
Still do their best to foil
Efforts to save humanity.


Al Gore IS NOT A CLIMATE SCIENTIST. His testimony was allowed in front of Congress -- Monkton's wasn't. See a little bias going on here? Of course -- by going for even more taxes, for "cap and trade" the politicians in Washington head more and more to controlling every bit of our every day lives ... because people are letting for fear "The sky is falling!"

Gee how about this:

http://news.yahoo.com/s/livescience/20090425/sc_livescience/dinosaurslivedinthearctic

Quote:
Dinosaurs Lived in the Arctic

.
.
.
nd they weren't lost wanderers, either. The fossils include dinosaur eggshells - a first at high latitudes, and evidence of a settled, breeding population.

It's true the Arctic was much warmer back then, but it wasn't any picnic. The size and shape of fossilized leaves found with the bones enabled Godefroit's team to estimate a mean annual temperature of 50 degrees Fahrenheit, with wintertime lows at freezing.


Gee -- just what did man do with his "modern" sticks to cause the warming of the Artic then?

Global Temperature fluctuations happen -- there are cycles -- and, right now, we are actually in a cooling cycle. Man is not so powerful that he can affect, all by his wittle wonesome, the global weather (no matter what the Chinese are trying!).
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Mark



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PostPosted: Mon Apr 27, 2009 12:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Read the science I've already cited. As I said in an earlier post, Earth's history has included everything from snowball Earth to iceless Earth, and such changes are ACCOUNTED FOR in climate science. Anthropogenic climate change is MODIFYING natural cycles!
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LisaW



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PostPosted: Mon Apr 27, 2009 3:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mark wrote:
Read the science I've already cited. As I said in an earlier post, Earth's history has included everything from snowball Earth to iceless Earth, and such changes are ACCOUNTED FOR in climate science. Anthropogenic climate change is MODIFYING natural cycles!


Okay ...

Quote:

Here is a graph of CO2 concentrations for a few recent centuries (trend: rising):
http://cdiac.ornl.gov/trends/co2/graphics/siple-gr.gif

Here is a graph of over 150 years of global temperatures (trend: rising):
http://www.cru.uea.ac.uk/cru/data/temperature/nhshgl.gif



When the CO2 concentration and temperature graphs are overlayed (well, by anybody but Al Gore for his movie ...), it shows CO2 rising 6 months behind temperature rise.


Quote:

UK Treasury Review Report on the Economics of Climate Change:
http://www.hm-treasury.gov.uk/stern_review_report.htm
(The short version: doing nothing about climate will cost 5% to 20% of global GDP per year while acting will cost 1%.)


This would be the Lord Stern who says the CO2 concentration is "430 ppm" when it's actually less than 389ppm? Seems like something an "expert" ought to really know. But wait! There's more!

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/columnists/christopherbooker/5220173/Lord-Stern-Scaremonger-in-chief-exposed-by-simple-blunders.html

Quote:

one would not expect a man whose institute is claimed to be "a world-leader in low carbon technologies" to claim, as he does in his book, that by next year wind energy "is set to account for 8 per cent of electricity generation in the UK", when the current figure is scarcely 1 per cent; or that "wind accounted for 35 per cent of total installed power capacity in the US in 2007", when two minutes on the internet could have shown him that wind power that year generated less electricity in the US than a single large coal-fired power station.

In fact, when the Stern Review came out in 2006, predicting that global warming could soon account for the extinction of 40 per cent of all species of life on earth, far from being universally lauded it was savagely criticised by some of the very people who might have been expected to praise it – his fellow economists. No one was more excoriatory than the man on whose work Lord Stern claimed to have based many of his most scarifying predictions, the noted Dutch economist Dr Richard Tol.

Far from being a global-warming sceptic, Dr Tol has played a key part in the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and wrote the UN Handbook on Methods for Climate Change Impact Assessment. But he could not have been more withering about the way the Stern Review went out of its way to cherry pick the most alarming possible predictions about the impacts of climate change and then to exaggerate them still further. Where Tol had, for instance, given a range of costs up to $14 per ton of CO2, while saying that the actual cost was "likely to be substantially smaller", Stern had more than doubled his figure, to $29 a ton. Stern's report, Tol pronounced, could be "dismissed as alarmist and incompetent", and his doomsday prophecies were simply "preposterous".


Hmm ... doesn't look like everyone with the know-how is agreeing with your sources.

Okay so ...

Quote:

James Hansen June 23, 2008 to Congress (20 years after 1988 testimony):
http://www.worldwatch.org/node/5798


Well, he did give his report -- but not to "Congress" -- rather to the House Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming

http://townhall.com/columnists/AmyRidenour/2008/07/02/james_hansens_hissy_fit?page=2
Quote:

The global warming committee is chaired by Massachusetts Democrat Ed Markey, who first became famous for opposing clean nuclear power. Oh, and for opposing Reagan’s approach to winning the Cold War.

Guess he was wrong on that one.

Surprise.

It was in Markey’s ghetto committee that Hansen delivered his remarks.

There were plenty of chairs for the interns.


But, well, gee ... Hansen can't seem to make his points without, well, using lies

Quote:
When Canadian mining engineer Steve McIntyre discovered in 2007 that the U.S. government’s NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies -- led by Hansen -- had screwed up its figures and erroneously (and conveniently, for Hansen) reported that 1998 is the warmest year on record instead of 1934, Hansen flipped out. He referred to those who caught the error as “court jesters,” charging they did the bidding of unnamed captains of industry.


http://hennessysview.com/2008/11/10/james-hansens-boldest-lie-to-date/
Quote:

Dr. Hansen apparently believes the world is as stupid as, well, as stupid as the world seems to be.

All of the October surface station temperature from Russia was corrupted. So what did Hansen do? He simply copied and pasted Russia’s temperatures for September into October and reported that October 2008 was the hottest October on record.

Why isn’t James Hansen in prison? The AGW argument has lost so much steam that he’s resorted this level of lying, fraud, and deceit. So fast are the data disproving Hansen’s theories that he’ll stoop to bald faced lies to protect his crumbling reputation.

Meanwhile, 2008 is shaping up to be below average across the vast majority of the United States.


And, there average temperatures Jan - Oct 2008 were cooler than normal. The temps are dropping.

http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/img/climate/research/2008/oct/01_10_2008_DvTempRank_pg.gif

But, if you "cook the books" you can make your point -- of course, its lying, but, hey, if it sounds good, right:

http://www.moonbattery.com/archives/2008/11/global_warming_78.html
Quote:

Lest you're ever tempted to believe the liberal establishment's shrill lies about the nonexistent climate crisis:

A surreal scientific blunder last week raised a huge question mark about the temperature records that underpin the worldwide alarm over global warming. On Monday, Nasa's Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS), which is run by Al Gore's chief scientific ally, Dr James Hansen, and is one of four bodies responsible for monitoring global temperatures, announced that last month was the hottest October on record.

This was startling. Across the world there were reports of unseasonal snow and plummeting temperatures last month, from the American Great Plains to China, and from the Alps to New Zealand. China's official news agency reported that Tibet had suffered its "worst snowstorm ever". In the US, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration registered 63 local snowfall records and 115 lowest-ever temperatures for the month, and ranked it as only the 70th-warmest October in 114 years.

The GISS got the alarming numbers it wanted by carrying over some temperatures from the previous month. As even Al Gore probably knows, September tends to be warmer than October.

Hansen et al. were caught out not by the increasingly irrelevant mainstream media, but by the blogs Watts Up With That and Climate Audit. The GISS's response was to discover a new "hotspot" in the Arctic — despite the fact that sea ice there is 30% more extensive than it was at this point last year.


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