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NeilBlanchard 08-14-2010 07:05 PM

Eaarth
 
http://www.billmckibben.com/images/eaarth-200.jpg
(click on image for link)

Quote:

"Read it, please. Straight through to the end. Whatever else you were planning to do next, nothing could be more important." —Barbara Kingsolver
I agree. Please read "Eaarth". Check it out from your local library, or buy it and pass it along to someone.

gone-ot 08-14-2010 08:47 PM

...pardon the cynicism, but is this just another "...sky is falling..." book?

...however, I must admit the author (I Google'd him) at least is not an ex-vice (pun intended) president, which lends lots more credibility to him.

Thymeclock 08-14-2010 11:51 PM

Thanks for the endorsement.

I would have thought that the aauthor might have been Aal Gore.

NeilBlanchard 08-15-2010 03:50 PM

Tomgram: Bill McKibben, A Wilted Senate on a Heating Planet | TomDispatch

Phytoplankton Population Drops 40 Percent Since 1950: Scientific American

Arragonis 08-16-2010 06:26 PM

And today one of the main tenets of AGW is under challenge - not for the first time.

New paper makes a hockey sticky wicket of Mann et al 98/99/08 | Watts Up With That?

NeilBlanchard 08-16-2010 11:11 PM

Questions are good, but a couple of papers do not change the accepted science.

The tropics are now over 2 degrees bigger both in the north and the south than they were in 1950.

Glacier National Park is down to 25 quickly melting glaciers -- it used to have 150.

The ocean pH used to be 8.2 and it is now 8.1 -- shellfish and corral are not going to make it much longer. Some carbon dioxide is absorbed by the ocean and this drops the pH.

Plankton are down 40% from 1950 -- this is the very base of the food chain in the ocean.

The northwest and the northeast passages are open through the Arctic for the first time in human history.

Evaporation is 5% higher than it used to be, and this is making rainstorms much more intense, and droughts are now the norm in many places (Australia for instance).

The temperatures went above 100F for the first time in the 130 years recorded in Moscow -- they hit 111F. The land is on fire, literally.

Lightening is increased, and the strikes are lighting many, many more fires. The Arctic tundra burned for the first time we have ever known.

There are a least two island nations that are planning to *move* *everybody* because they are getting flooded out by the rising sea level.

Disease is spreading out -- West Nile virus, malaria, Dengue fever, etc. are all spreading well beyond their "traditional" ranges.

Methane is escaping the underground where it has been frozen for millennia; under the tundra, bogs, and lakes.

Much/Most of the boreal forests of the northern hemisphere (about 1/3 of the land plants?) are dead -- as far as the eye can see, there are only dead trees. Pine bark beetles are not getting frozen and killed off, so they are running rampant.

Right now, about 1/5th of the entire country of Pakistan is under water -- they got ~10 months worth of rain in TWO DAYS! And it is raining again...

GCC is real, and it largely caused by humans burning a few million years worth of carbon fuel in ~150 years. If you want to join the scientific debate, fine.

But if you simply do not want to believe that the scientists are correct -- then you need to decide why you don't also disbelieve the theory of gravity, or atomic structure, relativity, plate tectonics, etc. The scientific process is the same for all of these. They are all based on the data, and they are all the accepted scientific theory. If one of 'em is wrong, then they all are wrong.

Thymeclock 08-17-2010 12:44 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by NeilBlanchard (Post 189235)
Questions are good, but a couple of papers do not change the accepted science... (etc.)

Gee, Neil, that was quite a speech!

I really miss AalGore. It's such a shame that since his domestic scandals erupted we have heard comparatively less from the formerly relentless drumbeat of the global warming campaign.

Maybe you aspire to fill his shoes? :rolleyes:

Arragonis 08-17-2010 07:05 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by NeilBlanchard (Post 189235)
Questions are good, but a couple of papers do not change the accepted science
....
GCC is real, and it largely caused by humans burning a few million years worth of carbon fuel in ~150 years. If you want to join the scientific debate, fine.

Sorry Neil and I don't want to start an argument but those of us who are neither believers or skeptics find this kind of language from one side or the other very closed and not open to any kind of debate.

There IS a debate to be had here, the science is not settled - I refuse to believe Monbiot, someone who compares people who do not have his beliefs to Holocaust deniers - jeesh.

Quote:

Originally Posted by NeilBlanchard (Post 189235)
But if you simply do not want to believe that the scientists are correct -- then you need to decide why you don't also disbelieve the theory of gravity, or atomic structure, relativity, plate tectonics, etc. The scientific process is the same for all of these. They are all based on the data, and they are all the accepted scientific theory.

Gravity - things fall to the ground, planets orbit suns, moons orbit planets - all in a way that proves the theory. You predict it with the theory and confirm it with real observations.

Atomic Structure - Torness power station is just 25 miles from where I sit. It seems like a big investment in a unproven theory.

Relativity - Some observations have proven aspects of it such as quasars and background radiation, but it is still a theory so far and someone may come up with another explanation which also fits. Still a theory.

Plate Tectonics - I find earthquakes and volcanos pretty convincing. Faults are examined and watched to predict quakes all over the world.

Quote:

Originally Posted by NeilBlanchard (Post 189235)
If one of 'em is wrong, then they all are wrong.

Sorry, no.

AGW does not come close to those theories and should not be linked. For AGW to be proven the scientists have to prove 3 things

1. We are living in a period of warming not seen before
2. That warming is caused by greenhouse gasses
3. The gasses we contribute are accelerating the effect

The problem is that after 35 years of this theory being around and all the research associated with it even part 1 of this theory has no convincing evidence. The paper I linked to (and there have been quite a few others) suggests that both the data used and the methods offer little in the way of proof.

For those not reading it, basically they analysed the methods used in temperature reconstruction going back to 1000AD. It is this research that allows headlines like the temperatures now are higher than history. It also produced the famous (or should that be infamous) Hockey Stick.

It turns out that the data can be seen as flawed - some proxies are unreliable due to external factors not temp related or local environmental conditions and disturbances. On top of this the methods used to analyse the data are also questionable. They are not standard methods used in the science of statistics, and the environmental scientists using them are not experts in those methods anyway.

The most damning conclusion was that if the researchers used random red-noise through the model it came close to replicating the actual results. Random data !

As I tapped above I'm not a skeptic or a believer but there is still need for an open debate. The emails leaked from CRU seem to suggest that the scientists don't want that debate, the reasoning seems unclear. You also seem to think the debate on that aspect is closed. Not for me I'm afraid.

I have a kid and I want the world to be livable when he's grown up. I'm willing to do what I can to conserve resources, recycle when I can and polute as little as possible but AGW still remains unconvincing to me.

Sorry - that was longer than I intended. :D

RobertSmalls 08-17-2010 11:01 AM

I seriously doubt we're going to tip the planet into a Venusian greenhouse scenario where higher temperatures lead to even higher temperatures. But if we did, neither localvorism nor carbon-neutral living would save you.

Hopefully, Antarctica and Siberia would remain habitable. The survivors would be well advised to build up international trade to support a massive industrial and research base. The goal would be to engineer crops and cities that would allow us to reclaim the formerly temperate zones and tropics despite the heat, or terraforming methods to bring global temperatures down. I see nothing to recommend local economies in this or any other scenario.

But that's all science fiction.

Climate change might bring about an overall decline in the planet's ability to support human crops. People in wealthy countries will hardly notice. The price of food on the international market will rise, and most people will eat more grain and less meat, perhaps without noticing it.

In response to a poor harvest this year, Russia has barred the export of grain, causing a fall in the local price of wheat and a rise in the world price. Also recall the controversy over Japan refusing to open its strategic rice reserves during the Burmese typhoon a few years back. Good for them, promoting localvorism. I fully expect American, European, and powerful Asian governments to be similarly able and willing to look after their own, at the expense of the world's poor.

But perhaps continued innovation will allow agricultural production to continue to exceed the needs of the world's population despite a reduction in available arable land. Perhaps more heat-tolerant crops may be required. Or perhaps global warming will increase rainfall, which would be nice.

@Arragonis: It doesn't matter whether humans have already caused detectable global warming. There's very little debate that the GHG's that we are releasing in unprecedented quantities will cause climate change if they haven't yet. Regardless of whether it has happened or will someday happen, our response should be the same: reduce GHG emissions when we can.

Most of our GHG emissions are from burning coal and petroleum. Just look at our collective fuel logs to see how easily we could reduce our consumption of petroleum if that were made a priority. Likewise, with a little intelligent legislation (carbon tax, renewable energy mandates), we'd see a dramatic decrease in our dependence on coal as an energy source.

I'm not 100% certain reducing GHG emissions would help us leave a more habitable planet. But with as easy as it is to do, and as helpful to our descendants as it might be, I say we should at least leave the coal in the ground and stop driving unaerodynamic bricks around.

gone-ot 08-17-2010 11:02 AM

...a skeptic is not the same as a heretic, although a rather common "religious" thread often seems to exist.

basjoos 08-17-2010 01:19 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by NeilBlanchard (Post 189235)
Disease is spreading out -- West Nile virus, malaria, Dengue fever, etc. are all spreading well beyond their "traditional" ranges.

West Nile and dengue fever are Old World diseases that recently jumped over to the New World and are currently spreading to their full potential range in the New World.

The traditional range for malaria prior to the 1900's ran north into Scandinavia and Siberia in Eurasia and into Canada in North America. Malaria was a big problem in the railroad camps that built the Trans Canadian railroad in the late 1800's.

NeilBlanchard 08-17-2010 01:53 PM

I hear you, and you all make good points. I hope that you can check the Eaarth book out from your local library and read it.

Arragonis 08-17-2010 02:31 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by RobertSmalls (Post 189295)
@Arragonis: It doesn't matter whether humans have already caused detectable global warming.

It does matter. Its actually core to the debate. Most reconstructions, apart from the ones used by the IPCC, accept it has been warmer - a lot warmer - than it is now. If it isn't warmer then we aren't having an effect.

Quote:

Originally Posted by RobertSmalls (Post 189295)
There's very little debate that the GHG's that we are releasing in unprecedented quantities will cause climate change if they haven't yet. Regardless of whether it has happened or will someday happen, our response should be the same: reduce GHG emissions when we can.

There isn't debate that GHGs will cause climate change. There IS debate about whether the amount we are releasing has, does and will cause it.

But above all I accept the basic point you are making :D

I think we are all coming here for the right basic reasons, to reduce our effect on the planet as well as personal costs and of course the politics of oil. It effects us in different ways depending on where we are in the world. We may not agree what the effect we are trying to prevent or change is but its all good. :thumbup:

As Neil has said maybe we can have a look at the book and see if it offers something new. I applaud and respect his effort to get people to look at something he believes in, but at the same time I don't agree with his premise.

Now, on with the FE increasing...:turtle:

gone-ot 08-17-2010 03:59 PM

...with all due respect (or not) to British namesakes, mankind has not been a very good steward, but similarly, 'Mother Nature' hasn't been so 'beautiful' either!

NeilBlanchard 08-18-2010 12:39 AM

It has been warmer than this in the past -- the problem is that this *change* has occurred in a geological instant. That and we humans have had ~10,000 years of near perfect climate in which to gain as much as we have.

Our human ability to adapt will be strenuously tested. Things will be different from now on.

pletby 08-18-2010 01:05 AM

Just how much greenhouse gases was expelled from the volcano in Iceland this spring? The one that closed down European airports for days (weeks?) and that's erupted for years at a time before. That'd be just one volcano of course. Just wondering how that compares?

roflwaffle 08-18-2010 02:49 AM

The USGS on volcanoes via about dot com.

Plus an obligatory repost...
http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4036/...27b1ed7ff0.jpg

tumnasgt 08-18-2010 07:46 AM

As is summed up nicely by the picture in roflwaffle's post, there isn't really a downside to reducing emissions.

There are financial costs for some things, but a huge amount of difference can be made by simple things like putting on a warm top before turning up the thermostat and switching off the lights when you don't need them.

In my life, I have decided that until there is real proof to whether global climate change is a real problem, I'm going to play it safe. Pretty well everything I do will save me money, so even if GCC turns out to be a miscalculation, I'll be better off in the pocket.

So much media attention is focused on how much all this "being green" will cost us, but the core message (use less energy) will save money short-term as well as long-term.

Arragonis 08-18-2010 09:23 AM

There is a potential issue with the rate of increase - the data isn't exactly straightforward. For example a load of temp sites are badly placed, so actually they are recording temps that are higher than expected.

And secondly a lot of the data has been, er, 'adjusted'. Its interesting how these adjustments are always upwards and never down.

And thirdly when you look at the reconstructions, another issue is that there is a divergence between what the proxies tell us should be happening and what is happening - thats the 'hide the decline' issue - the proxies are declining yet recorded measured temp seems to be increasing.

If the proxies don't match current temps how can they be trusted to record past temp. So can we say there wasn't a warmer period or indeed a period of rapid change ? Dunno but the data needs analysing more cleanly to make sure. Like I say I'm on the fence.

The precautionary principle is a nice thing, except if you are in the 3rd world and being denied any of the developments we take for granted which may save your life or those of your children because of something which is at best a theory so far. And at the same time those same people still fly, drive, use central heating, electricity like mad.

If I was in one of those countries I would want my government to tell the IPCC to "go forth and multiply" too.

Arragonis 08-18-2010 09:31 AM

One last point then I'm going to leave this

Droughts in Australia have been the norm for quite a long time, certainly since the 19th century when records really started.

Drought in Australia - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

It isn't something new or unusual. We don't know the full effects of the droughts in those years, only what people have recorded.

NeilBlanchard 08-18-2010 02:00 PM

If you want to look for ulterior motives, you only need to look to the large energy companies who are making record profits right now. And to the others who are dependent on all of us continuing to consume this most amazing resource.

A tiny portion of those record profits is all it takes to buy the FUD makers.

The only real doubt is the exact timing of the changes. If you look at the predictions of GCC in the past 20-30 years, the only trend is that things are already worse than they thought they would be in 50-100 years. The rate of change is surprising even the experts; possibly due to the fact that many of the multiplier effects are happening already.

We are acting out a huge and incredibly risky experiment, and the whole world and all the life on it -- is the guinea pig.

Weather Spotter 08-18-2010 02:46 PM

I think that being a good steward of what God gave us is important, to that end I try to promote green things but not to the point where they cost my lots of $$$$ or if they impact my standard of living. People come first.

The things I find interesting about climate change:
1. God mad the earth to have lots of cyclical patterns (think seasons). We know that there was a time when Ice covered most of North America. We also know that in the 1500's (not sure of the exact date) people moved to Greenland and farmed there. Then things got colder.

2. when my parents were in school the big thing was the next global ice age environmentalists were warning about how in the next 50 years we will see a massive cool down.

3. Show me the reliable data for the last 1000 years, 1/8 of the length of earth has been around (If you believe the Bible), if not then the last 1000 years is only a paper thin line on the time line of this planet. The data that I have seen leads me to think that there are cycles of warmer and colder times. There might even be 3 or 4 going on (think floods 10yr, 30 yr, 100yr etc).

4. are humans changing things with pollution? Yes. To what extent are we and what will this cause? We can not tell that yet. Is change bad? Maybe we can not tell yet.

5. God made the earth for us to use (not abuse), so use it wisely.

Summery: Nature is full of cycles, we have not determined what is normal and therefore can not tell if anything is wrong. Should we impact people quality of life now for a possible help in the future? NO! small things to reduce polution, fine, but keep the costs down.
I say that it might be a conspiracy to control people and to distract them from fixing other things.

C3H8 08-18-2010 03:49 PM

biggest detractor from global warming is the beatnicks and refuse who won't take a shower like hippys that preach about it all day. i cant help but oppose any views these people have.

take a shower and get a job! or atleast join the military.

gone-ot 08-18-2010 04:51 PM

...uh, isn't the "...third rock from the sun..." about 4.567 billion years old since creation...and only about 4.54 billion years old since firmament?

RobertSmalls 08-18-2010 07:35 PM

Well, I have something to say about Thomas Jefferson's excellent "The Life and Morals of Jesus of Nazareth", but:

Quote:

For the way off-topic topics (lighter stuff). Political discussion? ONLY topics directly related to efficiency are allowed. And keep it civil!
So I'll just say that I like to respect other religions as a general principle, even though certain beliefs and disbeliefs test my dedication.

Arragonis 08-18-2010 11:26 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Douglas Adams
Far out in the uncharted backwaters of the unfashionable end of the Western Spiral arm of the Galaxy lies a small unregarded yellow sun.

Orbiting this at a distance of roughly ninety-two million miles is an utterly insignificant little blue green planet whose ape-descended life forms are so amazingly primitive that they still think digital watches are a pretty neat idea.

This planet has or rather had a problem, which was this: most of the people living on it were unhappy for pretty much of the time. Many solutions were suggested for this problem, but most of these were largely concerned with the movements of small green pieces of paper, which is odd because on the whole it wasn't the small green pieces of paper that were unhappy.

And so the problem remained; lots of the people were mean, and most of them were miserable, even the ones with digital watches.

Many were increasingly of the opinion that they'd all made a big mistake in coming down from the trees in the first place. And some said that even the trees had been a bad move, and that no one should ever have left the oceans.

And then, one Thursday, nearly two thousand years after one man had been nailed to a tree for saying how great it would be to be nice to people for a change, a girl sitting on her own in a small cafe in Rickmansworth suddenly realized what it was that had been going wrong all this time, and she finally knew how the world could be made a good and happy place. This time it was right, it would work, and no one would have to get nailed to anything.

Sadly, however, before she could get to a phone to tell anyone about it, a terrible stupid catastrophe occurred, and the idea was lost for ever.

This is not her story.

.

dcb 08-18-2010 11:40 PM

reflections on a mote of dust
 
here is earth through saturns rings from voyager:
http://lib.store.yahoo.net/lib/skyimage/pbdwords.jpg

Arragonis 08-19-2010 02:06 PM

That quote in text. Its pretty good. :thumbup:

Quote:

Originally Posted by Carl Sagan
From this distant vantage point, the Earth might not seem of particular interest. But for us, it's different. Consider again that dot. That's here, that's home, that's us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every "superstar," every "supreme leader," every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.

The Earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena. Think of the rivers of blood spilled by all those generals and emperors so that, in glory and triumph, they could become the momentary masters of a fraction of a dot. Think of the endless cruelties visited by the inhabitants of one corner of this pixel on the scarcely distinguishable inhabitants of some other corner, how frequent their misunderstandings, how eager they are to kill one another, how fervent their hatreds.

Our posturings, our imagined self-importance, the delusion that we have some privileged position in the Universe, are challenged by this point of pale light. Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity, in all this vastness, there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves.

The Earth is the only world known so far to harbor life. There is nowhere else, at least in the near future, to which our species could migrate. Visit, yes. Settle, not yet. Like it or not, for the moment the Earth is where we make our stand.

It has been said that astronomy is a humbling and character-building experience. There is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world. To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another, and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we've ever known.


NeilBlanchard 08-19-2010 09:11 PM

I'll add that this pale blue Eaarth may be the only home we will ever know; unless we get through this rough patch. Let's err on the side of caution, shall we?

Weather Spotter 08-19-2010 11:25 PM

better safe than sorry, but can you say we are in a rough patch? Where is the data to show we are in a "rough patch". Show me the data on what is normal (over the last 1000 years) and then I will see if we are in a rouch patch. Pending the data, we can not draw conclutions. that would be the same as saying that my last take of gas was the normal and that this one is way lower so I did somthign wrong. You would ask me to show you the last seveal months of data before you could draw a pattern. the same thing applys to the earth! We do not have reliable data for more than a few 100 years (under 300). Past that the numbers get hard to pin down. what data we do have has been "tweeked" and then the origanls were "lost". If that were the case for some new 20MPG boost snake oil we would all cry foul. this makes me think that there is somthign going on behind our backs.

Therefore, I am verry hesitant to bend over backwards to fix a "problem" that might not even be there.

Can we be more responsablle with our tratment of the earth? Yes! Should we sacrifise a lot to do it? No! Techonogly will help us change while keeping our standard of living.

NeilBlanchard 08-19-2010 11:52 PM

Just take a look at the flooding in the multiple places all over this country -- Milwaukee got 7.5 inches of rain in TWO HOURS(!!), the epic flooding in Pakistan (~10months of rain in TWO DAYS, and it is still raining) -- the flooded area is bigger than Italy and it is in the heart of their most productive farm land, the fires in Russia, the melting glaciers and ice on the poles, the changing ocean pH, the expanding tropics (see my earlier post), the dead boreal forests, the methane bubbling up from under the "permafrost" that isn't so permanent after all...

Weather Spotter 08-20-2010 12:18 AM

So? the earth has never been in a stedy state, things are always chanig. Is this bad? "If" we evloved as a part of the change, we can also die off.

I think that people view of eternity has a huge impact on how they treat the earth. If this is the only place we have than the upmost care should be taken. Since I know that "the earth will will be distroided with a fervent heat" and that God will make a "new heaven and a new earth" why should I get woried about this one? God made this earth, He can fix any problem we make. Also this is not my final home, Heaven is. That puts things into perspective for me. If you do not belive this, than you must belive in somthing else. I can trace it back to faith one way or the other, you must belive in God or you believe there is not a God who made the universe. Faith is the evidance of what we do not see. None of us saw how the earth came into beeing so we must have faith in somthing.

You pick.

I choose to belive in a caring God. If I am wrong, what have I lost? If I am right I avoid an eternity in Hell! If nothing else I am making the safest choise.

tumnasgt 08-20-2010 12:42 AM

If I were religious, I would take the view that God does not want us to screw up what we were given. How is making the planet uninhabitable for future generations any better than killing another human?

I'm not saying that GCC is real, but I do think that looking after what we have is important. Most processes that emit CO2 also emit particles which harm other humans and wildlife. Reducing energy consumption has many upsides, and very few downsides.

In the way of quality of life, is driving a 5000lb SUV really improving your life? What about lighting a room nobody is in, or turning on the heater when you could put on a sweater?

RobertSmalls 08-20-2010 01:27 AM

I am completely unmoved by examples of extreme weather. Weather is not climate.

The biggest problem with citing extreme weather is it's so hard to quantify. It seems to me like 2010 has been a light year for natural disasters, but how do you put a number to something like that?

On Pakistan: it's an 80 year flood, as I understand. It's hard to build flood control systems to endure a 100 year flood in a region with monsoons, especially on a budget like Pakistan's. Add in Pakistan's understandably poor response and relief effort, and the result is a human tragedy that captures your attention and stimulates an emotional reaction, but it's not unprecedented, nor is it evidence of climate change.

Statistically speaking, you can expect hundred year floods to happen every year. Add in hundred year droughts, fires, hurricanes, etc. and it's enough to keep a newspaper afloat, provided that enough people enjoy reading stories about these kinds of events.

NeilBlanchard 08-20-2010 11:35 AM

Greatly increased rates of melting glaciers and polar ice is not weather. Neither is rampant pine bark beetle infestations. Neither is 30 year droughts where rain used to fall. The expansion of the tropical zone by more than 2 degrees latitude north and south is climate change. A pH change in a few decades from 8.2 down to 8.1 is not weather. Significant increases of lightening, the world over, over a period of years, that are causing many more fires is not weather. 40% reduction in plankton since 1950 is not weather. Bleached corral is not normal. 5% more evaporation year after year is part of what is driving the extreme rainfall and more frequent and stronger storms.

I used to think that 0.5-1 inch of rain per hour was a huge amount of rainfall -- and it still is. So, when a half a dozen times in one year in this country (the USA) alone we see rainfall more than 3 TIMES that, it is more than just normal variations of weather.

The flooding in Pakistan is still getting worse. It may well be the largest flooding event in centuries, in the whole world. Ironically, the glaciers that feed the Indus River may only last a few more decades, and the 6 rivers the flow from the Himalayan mountains are already diminishing, and they may "go away" for all intents and purposes in the next 30-50 years. If they do, then about 1/3 of the world's population are going to know that global climate change is all too real.

Weather Spotter 08-20-2010 02:16 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by tumnasgt (Post 189745)
If I were religious, I would take the view that God does not want us to screw up what we were given. How is making the planet uninhabitable for future generations any better than killing another human?

I'm not saying that GCC is real, but I do think that looking after what we have is important. Most processes that emit CO2 also emit particles which harm other humans and wildlife. Reducing energy consumption has many upsides, and very few downsides.

In the way of quality of life, is driving a 5000lb SUV really improving your life? What about lighting a room nobody is in, or turning on the heater when you could put on a sweater?

This sort of thing, turning off lights, geting better gas mileage I am all for. It is things like a carbon tax (or cap and traid which is the same thing) that I think is going too far. I am all for reducing emissions, but only as long is it costly less than 10% more that what we are doing now. With this econnmy, I think the money is better spent in other ways, not driving up costs.

Reducing energy use is allways good. but there are other issues that I feel have greater priorty (like fixing the border).

Arragonis 08-20-2010 03:35 PM

There are consequences of the precautionary principle as I have already tapped.

Many people in the 3rd world will get sick or die because they don't have access to the energy we take for granted for food production, medicine and so on. Why ? Well partly because of this fear we will prevent them from using the efficient cheap energy we use and force them to use the ones that really and honestly don't work all that well at the moment - renewables. Solar and wind mainly.

I don't see why this is acceptible. Especially when (for example) 20 % of the world's oil is consumed by one country - and we all know which one. :D

I know this is a place where the converted gather, but you get my point. GWH Bush said the US way of life is not negotiable. Richard Feinberg made the best response in "Nature doesn't negotiate" - seems fair to me.

Arragonis 08-20-2010 03:37 PM

Sorry - PS - we are on the same page, for different reasons. Lets do our bit to solve the key immediate issue of resource usage. We can sort or disagree other one later.

dcb 08-20-2010 04:08 PM

Yah, environmental concerns and "social justice" concerns don't always overlap. We are all created equal, but born into vastly different circumstances.

roflwaffle 08-20-2010 05:14 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by RobertSmalls (Post 189755)
Statistically speaking, you can expect hundred year floods to happen every year. Add in hundred year droughts, fires, hurricanes, etc. and it's enough to keep a newspaper afloat, provided that enough people enjoy reading stories about these kinds of events.

Statistically speaking it's fairly easy to look at climate from the POV of weather. If there is an uptick in extreme weather, ie we're breaking or approaching more records than usual, then it's likely we're seeing climate change in action.


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