Mod+ 234. GLOBAL WARMING, CLIMATE CHANGE AND OUR ILLUSION OF CONTROL

#21
You don't need a scientific argument to believe global warming. Glaciers are melting all around the world. The Arctic ice cap shrinks year by year. Just visit Alaska or Glacier National Park (in the U.S.) and view the old photographs from around the 1950s and 60s. The evidence is clear before our eyes that the Earth is warming. I think many people do not understand or do not want to understand that there will be statistical and environmental fluctuations about a warming trend and that in some years and some places it might actually become colder. But the overall warming trend is clear for all to see.

Even from physics, it should be understood that some degree of anthropogenic global warming MUST be happening. Gases like carbon dioxide are greenhouse gases which trap heat in the atmosphere. Humans are burning fossil fuels, which release greenhouse gases. Ergo, humans are causing global warming. Now I can see people arguing about the degree of anthropogenic global warming but that it exists in some amount can not be disputed on scientific grounds. With billions of humans driving cars every day and using electricity from the burning of coal and oil every day, even small effects from an individual perspective add up a lot.

I think quite a few people have a distorted view of how mainstream science works or how scientists think based on the travesty of the parapsychology debate but consider this: surveys have shown that a majority of scientists believe psi is proven or is likely true (one survey showed 56% and the other, 67%). As for climate change, ~95% of climate scientists believe humans are causing global warming. Consider this too: if you're greedy for money and/or power, you don't go into science. The vast majority of scientists do what they do because they want to learn about the world and expand knowledge. Would you rather trust a scientist who does hard work for low pay or an oil company (most funding for global warming opponents comes from Big Oil) whose first loyalty is, by law, to their investors?

Indeed, I would ascribe psi-denialism and global warming denialism to the same phenomenon of denying empirical scientific results because they conflict with deeply held ideological beliefs. In the case of global warming denialism, this is usually libertarianism. Of course, you have heard the accusation that the Left supports action to fight global warming because they believe in controlling other people's lives. But this is a complete misunderstanding of how left-wingers, and people in general, think. What if they support action to prevent global warming because they are concerned about the effects of global warming? What if they are concerned about their children, their grandchildren, and the future of the human race? Is this not much easier to believe than believing that millions of your countrymen are making their and your lives more miserable just because they can?

As for the so-called "Climategate" scandal, what if I followed you around every day for a year, recording everything you said or did during the year and then took the absolutely worst-sounding thing you said, put it out of context, and then claimed that represented you and everyone like you. You would claim this as a libelous attack on character. So too, is the fake "Climategate" scandal.

Video of global temperature increase:
 
Last edited:
#22
If the earth were that fragile and sensitive to CO2, then we'd have had periods of catastrophic warming in the past: but we haven't.
That's factually incorrect. 55 million years ago was the PETM event....

The Geological Society of London statement on climate change, November 2010:

Has sudden climate change occurred before?

Yes. About 55 million years ago, at the end of the Paleocene, there was a sudden warming event in which temperatures rose by about 6 C globally and by 10-20 C at the poles. Carbon isotopic data show that this warming event (called by some the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum, or PETM) was accompanied by a major release of 1500-2000 billion tonnes or more of carbon into the ocean and atmosphere...
Similar sudden warming events are known from the more distant past, for example at around 120 and 183 million years ago. In all of these events it took the Earth's climate around 100,000 years or more to recover, showing that a CO2 release of such magnitude may affect the Earth’s climate for that length of time.

http://www.geolsoc.org.uk/~/media/s...ge - evidence from the geological record.ashx

One statement from this: This injection of carbon may have come mainly from the breakdown of methane hydrates beneath the deep sea floor.

If you now follow to the Arctic Methane Emergency Group,

http://ameg.me/index.php/emergency

and listen to Prof. Peter Wadhams he speaks of an ice-free summer in the Arctic by around 2016. These are actual satellite pictures, note. The problem now being methane gas hydrates on the sea floor. They say: The retreat of sea ice appears to be leading to the most catastrophic feedback process of all. This is the venting of methane to the atmosphere from frozen methane gas hydrates on the sea floor of the Arctic continental shelf.

Now clearly the Arctic ice is melting, the Arctic is heading for an "ice-free summer" in a few years. What happens if the methane gas hydrates get released - adding to the current CO2 emissions? A repeat of the PETM from 55 million years ago?

(who is Professor Peter Wadhams? Fascinating interview here on Matters of Life and Death and Higher Consciousness and his support of Prof. William Crookes)

http://www.spiritoday.com/cambridge...s-of-life-and-death-and-higher-consciousness/






























 
#23
That's factually incorrect. 55 million years ago was the PETM event....
Whatever caused the PETM (which isn't known, but might include vulcanism or cometary impact), it wasn't catastrophic for life. Had it been so, we wouldn't be here talking about it. The rise in CO2 associated with that period was probably mainly due to the warming causing outgassing from the oceans. Al Gore (in his film Inconvenient Truth) deliberately obfuscated the fact that CO2 rises follow temperature rises by up to 800 years rather than precede them. If CAGW enthusiasts want to invert causality and say that CO2 caused the PETM, well, they would, wouldn't they?

As for Arctic ice, it hasn't melted and is in fact recovering; meanwhile, Antarctic sea ice is expanding, which is why we currently have the comical situation of a vessel sent to examine sea ice retreat being locked into the ice down there.
 
#24
PS: Sorry to be impertinent, but: are these people complete cretins? He says: "To solve the tabacco problem, we can ban it, and that's it, problem solved". Kinda explains their GW-mongering, statist, prohibitionist mentality. They think that all problems can be solved by banning, prohibiting, taxing, legislating, etc. So, I just had a brainstorm: LET'S BAN DRUGS!! Problem solved, right? This is how it works, right, right? Or, or, LET'S BAN MURDER!!! PROBLEM SOLVED!!! Nobody will kill anybody, 'cause, like, it's gonna be illegal and stuff….

Highly educated but extremely intellectually lame people.
Am I the only person that thinks this is an emotional rant headed off down some side alley that the guest barely even noticed ? (Given the opportunity he may even agree with you ? )

He was comparing the difficulty of reversing the effects of GW (IF it's true) with something like smoking . If everyone was convinced that both of these were vitally important to the continuation of the human species, one would be relatively easy to achieve, it is in our hands, the other might be too far gone no matter what we did ?

I consider myself having ' expertise' in only one area (aviation) but I recognise that, even in that area, my opinion is just one of many. When it comes to GW, I wouldn't be so ignorant as to even venture an opinion .
 
S

Stephen Timmis

#25
How many people opposing climate change at this forum are USA citizens with a traceable Ancestry back to Europe?
 
#26
How many people opposing climate change at this forum are USA citizens with a traceable Ancestry back to Europe?
Nobody is opposing climate change. The climate is constantly changing. The claim is catastrophic anthropogenic global warming (CAGW) caused by CO2. That is what I am opposing: that warming caused by a small excess of CO2 resulting from human industrial activity is catastrophic. It may actually be beneficial; much better to be a bit warmer than a bit colder, because cold really is a killer. There are much worse things to worry about, like human-caused land use changes, especially noteworthy in the case of biofuels cultivation, ironically supposed to combat global warming. Even Al Gore has admitted this.

As to the point about European ancestry, I'm puzzled what you are trying to say. I'm a Brit, and we have CO2 catastrophists here, as they do in the USA and other developed countries. If you're trying to say that Europeans are somehow especially resistant to the global warming narrative, it ain't so.

The theme of the thread is the illusion that human beings have the power to control the climate through CO2 emissions. In it's own way, it's a beautiful conceit and you have to admire its cleverness and appeal to the authority of science, the new arbiter of Truth. What is actually being demonstrated, as in other areas (cosmology and medicine to name but two), is the mythologising of the power of science as a latter-day god.

In this respect, we're living in a no less mythological era than the ancient Greeks: however, at least in ancient Greece, mythology was regarded in the correct way, as a story about reality that wasn't actually reality, but a spiritually useful way of looking at things. The modern myths of science aren't regarded as stories, but as concrete literalisms, and that's what makes them specially dangerous. We can no longer distinguish stories from actuality.
 
S

Stephen Timmis

#27
Nobody is opposing climate change. The climate is constantly changing. The claim is catastrophic anthropogenic global warming (CAGW) caused by CO2. That is what I am opposing: that warming caused by a small excess of CO2 resulting from human industrial activity is catastrophic. It may actually be beneficial; much better to be a bit warmer than a bit colder, because cold really is a killer. There are much worse things to worry about, like human-caused land use changes, especially noteworthy in the case of biofuels cultivation, ironically supposed to combat global warming. Even Al Gore has admitted this.

As to the point about European ancestry, I'm puzzled what you are trying to say. I'm a Brit, and we have CO2 catastrophists here, as they do in the USA and other developed countries. If you're trying to say that Europeans are somehow especially resistant to the global warming narrative, it ain't so.

The theme of the thread is the illusion that human beings have the power to control the climate through CO2 emissions. In it's own way, it's a beautiful conceit and you have to admire its cleverness and appeal to the authority of science, the new arbiter of Truth. What is actually being demonstrated, as in other areas (cosmology and medicine to name but two), is the mythologising of the power of science as a latter-day god.

In this respect, we're living in a no less mythological era than the ancient Greeks: however, at least in ancient Greece, mythology was regarded in the correct way, as a story about reality that wasn't actually reality, but a spiritually useful way of looking at things. The modern myths of science aren't regarded as stories, but as concrete literalisms, and that's what makes them specially dangerous. We can no longer distinguish stories from actuality.
The level of the debate at this forum bores me. Pollution occurs and we should stop it as far as we are able. This debate is similar to other debates with proponents and sceptics. Who are the people financing the proponents and who are financing the sceptics? These are key questions.

We do not know the truth of Global Warming or any aspect of the human contribution to climate change. It is always possible to argue both ways, and both sides purchase scientists to say what they want to hear, and, surprise, surprise, the scientists agree with who is paying them.

Senor Vargas is convinced all arguments in favour of Global Warming are a product of ultra-left-wing, pro United nations activists. I mean, this is the sort of nonsense you get from those "Illuminati" advocates. We know the Koch brothers are financing the anti GW camp. This is a fight for political control of the International Economic Arena, and the big money players will stop at nothing.

Too many topics like this, and you may as well close up shop and keep greenfly off the roses in future. I mentioned the European Ancestry thing because Native Americans, Indiginous South Sea Peoples, South American Tribesman all want White European types stopped from their nonsense.

I am in the Philippines, I personally dug bodies out of the rubble of Yolanda. I do not give a damn about your semantic games, and your childish spats pro and contra GW. Fukishima may sink us all yet. Are you going to seriously sit there and tell me all is ok, and TEPCO are not hiding the truth of the damage at Fukishima. We know, as Brits, that the Government and the Nuclear Industry routinely lied about the extent of the Windscale (sorry...Sellafield - Why did they change the name?) disaster. Do you trust the advocates of centralised power-generation to tell the truth about GW? History has shown them to be selfish money grabbing filth who will do anything, kill anyone (Check the history of oil in Nigeria) to maintain or increase their profits. This is a political struggle for control of the planet, and people of European ancestry are too far removed from reality to think the matter applies to them.
 
S

Stephen Timmis

#29
Michael, what is your source for this? I haven't heard this reported anywhere, I've only heard the opposite.
Antarctic sea ice expands and contracts every year. If you look short term, then you can argue that the last two years have seen a greater expansion than the last twenty. However, overall, the trend is towards contracting sea ice around antarctica. Sea Ice is also contracting more in bad years, than it expands in good years over the arctic.

The story of one ship trapped in the ice is just childishly silly, and cannot be used to guage the truth of anything. The anti-GW camp like to argue about how human action is nothing in the grand scheme of things, and if you study long history you can tell that GW is natural and the Human contribution insignificant. However, two years of contra-trend sea ice expansion, and suddenly they want to use short-term data.

Notice the pattern on TV and Radio. Someone comes on talking of climate change, and is immediately followed by a media sceptic to pooh-pooh the data. Does that remind you of any other subject people at this forum have an interest in?
 
#30
This story is false:
http://www.foxnews.com/science/2013/09/09/arctic-sea-ice-up-60-percent-in-2013/

See here,
http://mediamatters.org/research/2013/12/30/climate-change-misinformer-of-the-year-the-dail/197340
There was a calculation error - the number is really 29% instead of 60%. Daily Mail corrected their number already but as of this posting, Fox News hasn't.

But beyond that 2012 was a record low and represents a statistical fluctuation down. So naturally there is some reversion to the mean. One must look at the long term trend of an average loss of ~10% per decade in the yearly minimum.
 
Last edited:
#34
My mistake, I see. But unless I'm still misinterpreting it, the averages are still all lower, for every month. The grey line is the average over a 29 year period, which is why the reduction doesn't look as bad as if you compared it against the average 29 years ago.

How do you explain away the graph that I posted?

I really am trying to see your point here, but at first glance those graphs seem to be supporting my current view. Obviously I haven't studied the data as much as you, so I'm still open to correction. Graph and statistics such as these can be very hard to interpret, which is why I usually trust the experts in these things.
 
#35
@Enrique Vargas

How do the policies to combat global warming have anything to do with wealth redistribution? Wealth redistribution from oil/coal companies to solar/wind companies? Now that would be an amazing feat given the relative sizes of the respective players.
 
#36
@Enrique Vargas

How do the policies to combat global warming have anything to do with wealth redistribution? Wealth redistribution from oil/coal companies to solar/wind companies? Now that would be an amazing feat given the relative sizes of the respective players.
I'm also interested in this. It's been brought up a few times how people are being made poorer by green taxes etc. but I haven't seem any evidence for this at all. There are many reasons for the gross inequality in wealth, I personally wouldn't even put climate policies in the top 100 reasons for wealth inequality. I'm open to evidence though, so if you have any that is easily accessible I'll take a quick look.

As for fuel prices increasing, this is because we are fast running out of fossil fuels and they are becoming more costly to extract, as far as I know it's nothing to do with climate change policies. I suspect that the energy companies are also cashing in on the fact as well by artificially inflating prices, and this needs to stop.

Where is the evidence that climate policies are affecting wealth redistribution?
 
#37
My mistake, I see. But unless I'm still misinterpreting it, the averages are still all lower, for every month. The grey line is the average over a 29 year period, which is why the reduction doesn't look as bad as if you compared it against the average 29 years ago.

How do you explain away the graph that I posted?

I really am trying to see your point here, but at first glance those graphs seem to be supporting my current view. Obviously I haven't studied the data as much as you, so I'm still open to correction. Graph and statistics such as these can be very hard to interpret, which is why I usually trust the experts in these things.
Stewart, I don't even know where you got the graph or which hemisphere it represents. I need more information to check it out. How you see the graphs I posted as supporting continuing Arctic decline and other than Antarctic increase, I can't understand.
 
#39
It seems to me that there is evidence that the world is warming and evidence that this will continue and be bad. However, most of the evidence comes from what is a very small sample size when compared to the history of the planet. Furthermore, as bad things might be in the future, developing countries have important needs right now that will always take precedence over fears of global warming. Because as more people around the world are pulled out of poverty and into the modern technological age the more carbon will be burned, there is no practical way to seriously reduce warming by the first world countries alone reducing emissions.

I think it makes more sense to keep doing what we are doing and if the effects of the warming start getting drastic and catastrophic, we can come up with an articial solution (e.g. pumping stuff into the upper reaches of the atmosphere to limit sunlight) to reduce the warming.

The reality is that people want to have the pleasures and amenities of modern life too much to give them up for only a potential danger, no matter how extreme. If the danger really comes to pass we will come up with a solution then.
 
#40
Stewart, I don't even know where you got the graph or which hemisphere it represents. I need more information to check it out. How you see the graphs I posted as supporting continuing Arctic decline and other than Antarctic increase, I can't understand.
The graphs that you showed me show that while the levels may have had a slight upward trend in the last few months, over a 30 year period, they are all trending down. You can't tell anything by looking on a monthly scale, these things take decades to show a trend. If you look at the graph that I posted you'll see that it goes up an down all the time, but the overall trend is a down one.

With respect, the graph that I posted was further down the page that you linked to. If you'd scrolled past the graphs that shows what you wanted to see you would have seem them.

Interpreting such complex data such as this is hard. I'm certainly no expert. I still remain unconvinced by your argument.
 
Top