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Global Warming/Climate Change Super Thread

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couchcommander

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The introduction is very well done, it explores the basis of you are talking about in a (what comes across as) balanced fashion, while still making your point. On that note, I would look at bringing this exploration of issues to your entire paper. Describe where, in the body of research and opinions, the viewpoints you are expousing lie, and importantly, acknowledge prominent dissenting theories or ideas (where appropriate on major points). In the end, it strengthens the document, as it shows it is well researched and grounded.
 

a_majoor

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"Most" scientists have a "consensus" about global warming, we are always told. Perhaps they have a consusus on where their funding comes from and don't want to rock the boat:

http://blog.sciam.com/index.php?title=are_you_a_global_warming_skeptic_part_ii&more=1&c=1&tb=1&pb=1

http://thelondonfog.blogspot.com/

Science vs. political power,
or, Why should we expect that scientists are any different than the rest of us?
The issue of man induced climate change involves not the likelihood of dangerous consequences, but rather their remote possibility.

So begins the abstract to Understanding Common Climate Claims (available in .pdf) http://ff.org/centers/csspp/library/co2weekly/20060126/20060126_13.pdf , an articulate and challenging study of the politicization and alarmist claims of climate science and, by extension, popular environmental beliefs and education. The study was presented at the 22nd International Seminar on Global Emergencies in Erice, Italy in 2005 — the link is to a draft of the paper that will appear in the conference proceedings. Richard S. Lindzen is Alfred P. Sloan Professor of Atmospheric Sciences at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and was previously Burden Professor of Dynamic Meteorology and Director of the Center for Earth and Planetary Physics at Harvard University. Particularly illuminating are the 8th and 9th sections, "Scientific V. Political Discourse " and "Science and Policy." From his summary:

    [A] significant part of the scientific community appears committed to the maintenance of the notion that alarm may be warranted. Alarm is felt to be essential to the maintenance of funding. The argument is no longer over whether the models are correct (they are not), but rather whether their results are at all possible. Alas, it is impossible to prove something is impossible.

    As you can see, the global warming issue parts company with normative science at a pretty early stage. A very good indicator of this disconnect is the fact that there is widespread and even rigorous scientific agreement that complete adherence to the Kyoto Agreement would have no discernible impact on climate. This clearly is of no importance to the thousands of negotiators, diplomats, regulators, general purpose bureaucrats and advocates attached to this issue.

    At the heart of this issue there is one last matter: namely, the misuse of language. George Orwell wrote that language “becomes ugly and inaccurate because our thoughts are foolish, but the slovenliness of our language makes it easier for us to have foolish thoughts.” There can be little doubt that the language used to convey alarm has been sloppy at best. Unfortunately, much of the sloppiness seems to be intentional.

    A question rarely asked, but nonetheless important, is whether the promotion of alarmism is really good for science? The situation may not be so remote from the impact of Lysenkoism on Soviet genetics. However, personally, I think the future will view the response of contemporary society to ‘global warming’ as simply another example of the appropriateness of the fable of the Emperor’s New Clothes. For the sake of the science, I hope that future arrives soon.

Source: Dr. Graham Smith. For more on the subject of climate science alarmism, see also Taken By Storm, coauthored by UWO's Dr. Christopher Essex and Dr. Ross McKitrick.

edit to include link from Scientific American
 

bbbb

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I have not read 'State of Fear' by Micheal Crichton. What is it about?
 

a_majoor

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More from the Manor house:

http://www.jerrypournelle.com/view/view408.html#global

Tuesday, April 4, 2006   
 
For a different view of Hansen the Global Warming Spokesman:

Novak on Hansen

http://www.suntimes.com/output/novak/cst-edt-novak03.html

- Roland Dobbins

My position remains the same: real scientists will admit that they have no models that cover all the data, and know that our understanding of climate is insufficient to justify recommending expensive measures to compensate when we do not yet know whether to expect warming (and how much) or a new ice age.

The Sun is a variable star. How variable we do not know, and it might be worth knowing such things. The oceans have warming and cooling cycles (El Nino and La Nina) that we can't predict with any accuracy but which have enormous climate consequences.

My position continues to be that we need to know more and we ought to be spending more money to find it out; and those grants and studies ought NOT to be supervised by people like Hansen who have already made up their minds and will not spend a dime on gathering evidence that doesn't support their positions.

From the link:

But it is not a matter of industry's allies in government nullifying unanimous scientific opinion. The scientists are divided, and Hansen and his friends are using political tactics to try to prevail.
and
Hansen sounded much the same alarm in 1988, when he energized the global warming movement by predicting a temperature rise of 0.8 degrees Fahrenheit over the next 10 years. When the actual rise in surface temperatures over the decade was only 0.2 degrees, Hansen stepped back from his earlier predictions.

Yet he is making pretty much the same prediction now ("the temperature will rise by 10C in ten years"). Given his record, I wonder why anyone takes him seriously?







 

COBRA-6

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a_majoor said:
Given his record, I wonder why anyone takes him seriously?

Because the environmental lobby groups and media reports it as fact, and make it seem like global warming/climate change is huge, terrible *crisis*  :eek:  Just like they did with DDT, and the power-line cancer scare, etc etc... and by the time it's proved to be bunk, they'll have already moved on to the next terrible crisis, or catastrophe, etc etc...
 

zipperhead_cop

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Ever since someone got paid to look into cow farts ruining the ozone layer, I have been a bit skeptical of "pure science". 

http://www.agr.gc.ca/policy/environment/eb/public_html/pdfs/aei/Chap14E.pdf

Our tax dollars hard at work. ::)
 

exsemjingo

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Worried about failing math?  That's okay, you're still qualified to be (former) Vice President of the United States.  If you haven't heard the story yet, here it is from www.630ched.com

ALBERTA/630 CHED - Not all influential Americans are thrilled by the tremendous reserves in the Oil Sands near Fort McMurray.
Global warming opponent and former US Vice President Al Gore says what's happening in northern Alberta is "totally nuts".
In an interview for next week's issue of Rolling Stone magazine Gore slams our oil sands mega projects. He says: "For every barrel of oil they extract there, they have to use enough natural gas to heat a family's home for four days.
And they have to tear up four tons of landscape, all for one barrel of oil".
Gore compares the extraction process to drug addiction and adds "junkies find veins in their toes.
It seems reasonable, to them, because they've lost sight of the rest of their lives".
- Ed Mason

But how much natural gas is that?  Heating bills vary, so let's use a generous estimate of $80/month.  Divide by 30 days, multiply by 4, and that equals $10.67 worth of natural gas.  At the end of last month, one barrel of crude cost this much:

Crude oil NYMEX 73.93 +0.41 +0.55% 6/30/2006
1:28:00 PM

Now, I haven't factored in exchange rates, but isn't $73.93 far more than $10.67?  I'm no junkie, but I think that sounds economical.  Maybe Al Gore forgot that all industrial processes require energy, even energy extraction ones.  I guess he also forgot to look at a map of Northern Alberta, since we've preserved plenty of landscape in Wood Buffalo National Park, one of the largest national parks in the world.
Or maybe he's just being blindly partisan, and thinks that we are the ones who flunked math. ::)



 

GAP

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Plus from what I have seen of the areas no longer in production, they have backfilled, and landscaped to the point you would never know that the area was once a vast pit.... ::)
 

Michael Dorosh

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But at least he can spell, unlike a certain other former Vice President of the US.

Or certain forum posters.  ;D  ;)
 

Sheerin

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i wonder exactly, where you're getting he figure of 80 bucks a month to heat a house.  I've, in the past, paid close to 500 bucks a month for heating (granted it was an old house), and (500/30)*4 = $66.67 which is close to what  the price of crude is.

However, what Gore is trying to illustrate (and says quite plainly) is that we are junkies when it comes to Oil and we really need to start weaning ourselves off of it.  The sooner we get feasible alternative energy sources the better.

 

wotan

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Hey, leave poor Al Gore alone!  After all, he invented the Internet!  And that definitely beats spelling potatoe with an "e", like I was taught in school.
 

acclenticularis

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Regardless of what seems economical and regardless of the relative resources needed for extraction in the oil sands, there is far more at play here than arithmetic.  I don't see the relevance of comparing how much natural gas costs in the extraction process.  What seems relevant to me is the fact that natural gas is another non-renewable resource that we do not have ample supply of that must be used in the oil sands project.  There are many more consequences of the oil sands production than this.  It is really quite sad that people will jump on trivial details for the sake of ignoring the whole picture when issues such as environmental change is concerned.  Get acquainted with the whole issue.  There is plenty of information out there to form objective opinions re. what we are doing to the environment and will continue to do. 
 

paracowboy

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and why should the inane ramblings of a liar and a loser bother me? I had a brilliant and in-depth retort to the erstwhile former Vice-President, but in the interests of saving time I have boiled it down to the following pithy remark:

Hey Al! Bite me.
 

a_majoor

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acclenticularis said:
Get acquainted with the whole issue.  There is plenty of information out there to form objective opinions re. what we are doing to the environment and will continue to do. 

For example, the average global temperature on Mars is increasing:
http://www.mos.org/cst-archive/article/80/9.html
http://www.space.com/scienceastronomy/mars_ice-age_031208.html

Vikings farmed in Greenland during the dark ages. How many farmers are working in Greenland today? http://www.expressnews.ualberta.ca/article.cfm?id=776
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_Greenland

Dastardly Conservatives, Republicans and Neo-Cons are obviously going through space AND time to manipulate the climate.

And of course there is other historical data that can be accessed and understood if you know how to read and use critical though process to interpret the data. Al Gore and his friend's one sided climate change screeds will join the Ozone hole of the 1980's or the "Impending Ice Age" of the 1970's on the trash heap of history.


 

I_am_John_Galt

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a_majoor said:
Dastardly Conservatives, Republicans and Neo-Cons are obviously going through space AND time to manipulate the climate.

The notion that climate has varied in the past is obviously a lie perpetuated by the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy.
 

GAP

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I_am_John_Galt said:
The notion that climate has varied in the past is obviously a lie perpetuated by the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy.

Well, if that's the case, we should invite them to the water thread, they'd fit right in. Might even be able to contribute !!  ;D
 

Sheerin

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Vikings farmed in Greenland during the dark ages. How many farmers are working in Greenland today?

Farming of today is VERY different from farming during the times of the vikings.  In fact farming back then is more akin to people putting vegetable gardens in their back yard, rather than the large scale farming you see in across the world.  So, I don't think that helps your argument at all.

As for the coming ice age, well, there is one coming, no one doubts that.  We're currently in an interglacial period and given enough time another ice age will start.  How and when will it start?  I have no idea.  I just know its going to happen at some point. 
 
As for global warming, yes we are altering he enivornment around us, and yes the temperature is rising, but is it permanent or directly the result of our activity?  I don't know.  What is knowning is that human activity has been linked to past increases in the global temperature, so it isn't beyond the realm of possibility that our increasing output of greenhouse gases is affecting the climate.  There was an interesting article published about a year or so ago (can't remember which journal) which suggested that the mephane released by upper paleolithic/mesolithic rice farmers in asia helped increase the global temperature, which in turn allowed for agriculture to be developed in Europe (leading to the neolithic revolution). 

And if global warming isn't a good enough reason to look into alternative fuel sources, then I suggest that smog and air quality is a damned good one.

The evidence is clear, we really need to change our ways. 
 

paracowboy

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Sheerin said:
Farming of today is VERY different from farming during the times of the vikings.  In fact farming back then is more akin to people putting vegetable gardens in their back yard, rather than the large scale farming you see in across the world.  So, I don't think that helps your argument at all.
the salient point is that 1,000 years ago, vegetation grew in Iceland and Greenland. They don't now (that's first-hand experience. By the way, Iceland? No freakin' ICE! Greenland? NOT green. And no big-breasted Xena-like valkyries either. DOn't bother going.)
 

Michael Dorosh

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The simple fact that these resources are non-renewable should be enough reason to change our ways, really. Klein wants to use oil and gas revenue for prosperity cheques again; I think the time is long past to start looking at effective battery powered cars, etc. The billion dollars he wants to blow on prosperity would be better spent on something like that. The bust may not come in my lifetime, but it will happen at some point.
 

Kirkhill

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Sheerin - if you want to argue that we should keep the neighbourhood clean and tidy, that it looks good, that it might even be good for our health and emotional well being - feel free, fill your boots. 

My issue with Al Gore, Michal Moore, Green Peace and the IPCC is that they are parroting the line of Malthus and the Club of Rome and millenias worth of other psychotics - "The end of the world is nigh."

It ain't.

Stop panicing and deal with problems as they come.
 
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