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Climate Change Predictions - How Accurate Are They?

Updated on February 28, 2019
jackclee lm profile image

I am a retired engineer and scientist who has expertise in digital image processing and are engaged in other disciplines like climate change

Introduction

This hub is in response to a challenge from another distinguished hubber who disagree with me on Climate Change. He is Doc Snow and his recent hub Climate Change: How much Time Do We Have? was the start of this debate. To proof each of our positions, we decided to each create a hub detailing the accuracy of recent predictions made by Climate Scientists. We will select a few highlights to make our points and leave it to the readers to decide. We have agreed on a time frame of about one month to complete. I hope you will keep an open mind and wait till you had a chance to read both hubs. Here is the hub by Doc Snow opposing opinion. Let's have a robust discussion with respect. Please take the poll at the end after reading both hubs.

-September 2015

Background

I am an engineer by training and I am also a skeptic when it comes to AGW (man-caused global warming or climate change). I've written several hubs related to this topic and they are linked below. As an engineer, I am pragmatic and I look for solutions that produce results. The reason we are at this point is very simple. The vast extreme claims made by climate scientists over the last 20 years have not panned out. If they were accurate, I would not be a skeptic today.

I have been following this topic with great interest for many years. At first, I bought into the scientific theory that CO2 emissions were causing our planet to heat up. The theory seem simple enough and made some sense. However, after looking into it deeper and reading some related writings available, I began to realize that climate is a very complex issue. No one factor can determine the total effect. That's the genesis of the debate. How much of the warming is due to man-made events and how much of it is due to natural cycles and events.

A Side Bar

Let me give an example where I have been convinced by Science theories just to show I am not anti-Science or an ideolog. In the 1970's, a scientist discovered that our ozone layer was eroding. An ozone hole was becoming apparent in the antarctic pole region. This was alarming because the ozone layer in our upper atmosphere was protecting us from the harmful UV from the sun. The scientific community got together and determined that CFC was primarily responsible for the depletion. The is the chemical Chlorofluorocarbons that are in spray cans and air conditioners. The International community worked with nations to remove and replace CFC usage. Recently, we have seem a reduction of the ozone hole. In fact NASA is reporting the hole is reducing in size and may be closed in a few years. This is a success story I welcome. Just to summary this experience.

  • A problem was identified - Ozone Hole
  • A theory was proposed on the cause by scientists
  • A man-made chemical was identified as the culprit - CFC
  • Policies was adopted to fix the problem by replacing the chemicals
  • The problem seem to be reversing

Progression of Ozone Hole

AGW Climate Change

Getting back on topic, in the case of climate change, this is a very different scenario. Even though it may share some of the attributes of Ozone Holes, there is one important distinction. The projections made on global temperature and climate due to increased CO2 concentrations did not come to fruition. There is something else going on and we don't have a good understanding at the moment.

If the theory say "A" causes "B", and we see "A" causes "?", then we need to revisit the theory. That is why I'm a skeptic in 2015.

Let's example three predictions that were made about AGW and increase CO2 levels.

Here are three bullet points taken from the list published on the EPA main site.

  1. Earth will get warmer
  2. The Ocean level will rise
  3. The annual hurricanes will increase in intensity and frequency

FACT: CO2 Crosses Above 400 ppm 2013

Increase Temperature (Predictions vs. Actual Reality)

As seen from the above chart, CO2 concentration have been increasing steadily and have crossed the 400 ppm level.

Prediction: from Michael Mann, the creator of the "hockey stick" chart and Dr James Hansen of NASA in 1988. Here is a snippet from the NYT article 1988 - (read link below)

"Mathematical models have predicted for some years now that a buildup of carbon dioxide from the burning of fossil fuels such as coal and oil and other gases emitted by human activities into the atmosphere would cause the earth's surface to warm by trapping infrared radiation from the sun, turning the entire earth into a kind of greenhouse.

If the current pace of the buildup of these gases continues, the effect is likely to be a warming of 3 to 9 degrees Fahrenheit from the year 2025 to 2050, according to these projections. This rise in temperature is not expected to be uniform around the globe but to be greater in the higher latitudes, reaching as much as 20 degrees, and lower at the Equator."

Results: It is 2015, and 27 years since the dire prediction. Does it seem like we are anywhere near the temperature rise predicted by Dr. Hansen? In fact, even a former IPCC lead author Dr. Philip Lloyd recently admitted that global warming is within natural variability.

Rising Oceans

Another dire prediction is the rising sea levels and the impact that will have on all parts of the world especially coastlines. Here is a technical paper on this topic from 1988.

What is the reality?

Increase Hurricanes in Frequency and Intensity

Another projection is that global warming will lead to drastic increases in the frequency and intensity of hurricanes. On the face of this, it seems logical. If the temperature of the oceans are warming, it will create more cloud activity and lead to storms in the summer months.

What is the reality?

In the last 10 years, there has not been a category 3 or greater hurricane making land fall in the US. How is this possible?

Here is the list of major storms in the last 100 years or so…

Scroll down to the listing for the 20th century. You will note that 1938 was the biggest of them all, called the "Long Island Express." Also, 1960 had Hurricane Donna and both were category 5 storms. This happened before any global warming awareness.

I rest my case.

What's The Harm?

Environmentalist have co-opted the climate change movement. They have tied the environment protection to reducing fossil fuel as if the two are one and the same. They are not.

I have heard smart people such as Tom Friedman of the New York Times make the following argument. Suppose the theory of global warming are wrong. What's the harm? the worst is we will end up with cleaner air...They say think of it as an insurance policy.

The answer is lots.

  • destroying jobs in the energy sector.
  • increase cost of electric utility.
  • subsidizing alternative energy production that are not cost efficient.
  • reduced quality of life.
  • Wasted resources and missed opportunities.


What If?

Here is a mental exercise to ponder. If reducing CO2 is the proposed solution to global warming, what if sometimes down the road the earth enters a cooling phase? Would these same scientists propose that we increase CO2 to counter global cooling? Bring back the coal power plants... I tend to doubt it.


Items For Thought...

For all who are concerned about climate change, here are some items to think about going forward.

  • The past dire predictions have not come to fruition. Remember the boy who cried wolf...
  • Climate change is not the same as environment protection. I disagree with the Pope on this even though I am a catholic. I believe we should be good steward of the earth but climate change is not in our power to affect.
  • The hypocrisies of the climate change proponents such as Al Gore and some of the Hollywood crowd. They want us to curtail our energy consumption while they live in mansions and fly in private jets. Who's carbon footprint is larger?
  • Consider the harm that was done and ongoing with large amount of resources put into energy tax credits and renewable development...solar, wind, electric cars
  • Consider the increased cost of basic necessity of electric power for everyone and the lost of coal power plants.
  • Consider the increase of standard of living and improvements for 3rd world nations due to cheap and efficient fossil fuel.
  • Consider the lost of good jobs in the construction of the XL pipeline and the coal industry.
  • How does scientist explain the climate change occurring in the rest of the plants in our solar system?
  • Consider the false prediction of "peak oil" and the high cost of crude oil. Last I check, it is around $45 a barrel.
  • Notice that many predictions are for 25 years or 50 years into the future. Why is that? Could it be that they will not be around when the predictions don't come true. They will be retired and collecting their pensions.

Some Sign Of Desperation

Recently, a group of 20 climate scientists sent a letter to President Obama asking him to use the RICO law to prosecute climate change deniers. Is that a sign of desperation? Now we learned that one of the leader of the group, Jagdish Shukla, is under investigation for corruption.

The Sun

Here is an important quote I discovered from a workshop discussing the Effects of Solar Variability on Earth's Climate - (page 28)

"The basic question in understanding the Sun’s role in climate change is a compelling one: How well is past and present total solar irradiance known and understood? As Haigh pointed out, it is certainly an issue of concern that the existing TSI database has been derived from measurements that could not be intercalibrated to the degree of accuracy necessary for climate studies."

Summary

In this hub and others, I tried to make the case that the science of climate change is still a work in progress. The current models are incomplete and have a poor record of predicting future climate effects. We are about to reached a tipping point in a few short years. The projected rise in global temperature plotted against actual data is about to cross into a zone below that of the variance. If that trend continues, the whole model's credibility will be put to the test.

Let the reader decide. Please take the poll at the end.

The Changing Climate Models

Update 11/23/2015 (Hard Data Nugget)

Recently, I attended a Colloquium at the Lamont Observatory, Columbia University (Palisades, NY). It was a talk by Dr. Neil Pederson of Harvard University.

His specialty is the study of tree forests. The title of the talk was “Did the climate of the late 20th Century mask mechanisms for rapid, large-scale change in eastern US forests?”

It was a very interesting talk because it gave me a real data point that is peripheral to the general climate change environment. What I mean is that his work is related to climate science and how it affects the tree population over long periods of time but it is not a study of climate change per se. In the course of his presentation, he put up a chart showing the average temperature of four regions of forests in the US over a period of last 100 years. His focus was on droughts but it surprised me because the temperature were even over that period and in fact one region even show a slight decline of temperature.

At the Q/A session at the end, I posed the question to Dr. Pederson and ask for his comment with regard to the claim of climate change scientists that the earth is warming. His response shocked me a bit. He didn't see any issue with that and ended his response that we are not seeing warming "yet." I was also struck by the lack of curiosity on his part. Why are we not seeing the predicted warming?

His talk ended with the conclusion that we are in the best time of environment for trees. The last 15 or 20 years are wet and not too warm and ideal for tree life. This was not always the case going back 300 years. his study have found periods of severe drought and frost that have had negative effects on forests in the US.

This incident relates to my assertion that most scientists are just doing their narrow study on the effects of climate change on some specific item. They "assume" that CO2 causes global warming almost religiously and don't even question that fact even when their own data fail to agree with that assertion. Instead of questioning it, they just move along and continue with their study and getting the grants.

Chart by Dr. Neil Pederson (Harvard University)

Update Nov. 18, 2016 (on rising sea level)

I attended a talk at the Lamont Dogherty campus today. It was given by professor Andrea Dutton of the University of Florida. Her topic was polar ice sheet retreat during past warming periods...and their effects on sea level rise. I was particularly interested in this topic because of recent discussions here on this hub and elsewhere on the potential dangers of sea rise due to climate change. She spent a good part of 45 minutes describing the details of her teams work. She went on to expain the difficulty of measuring sea level averages and that they vary from location to location and even places where sea level will go down due to other factors such as topography and gravitational effects. She also mention the recent estimates of a rise of 3mm per year of oceans as accepted range. Going back over the past 3 million years, there have been multiple periods of warming and cooling. Her study focused on how high oceans have risen due to these natural warming cycles. The numbers they came up with using carbon dating and instrumentation were between 6-13 meters for a corresponding 2 degrees C rise in temperature. The implications is that a modern day warming of 2 degrees will possibly cause the same among of sea rise which will be devastating. She ended the talk with the projected chart of the IPCC of rise of 20 feet over the next 100 years.(2000-2100 time frame)

During the Q/A session, I asked the question of how fast the rise will come based on her studies. She was brutally honest and said she doesn't know. Her studies and experiments using coral reefs and radioactive dating does not indicate the timeframe but only the rise and fall of sea level. I found this astounding. When I followed up and ask about her last chart, she said they were based on combining the various work done by her colleagues and various climate models. Again, she does not know how accurate these projections are since they were made by other groups.

Here is the bottom line for me. If these scientists cannot answer the basic question of how fast, then we can't trust any projections. From a birdseye view of an outsider, I can accept the theory that a warming earth will lead to melting polar caps and rising oceans. I just can't agree on the dire nature of their projections. Let me pose the following hypothetical. Assuming a worse case scenario, that our earth will experience an average warming of 2 degrees C. Assuming we know from past history that the ocean will rise as high as 13 meters as a result. How fast will that rise take place? If it is decades, we are in definite trouble. If it is hundreds of years, we have time to mitigate by relocating to higher grounds. If it is thousands of years, then I say we can just forget about it. It is a non issue because other factors will become much more significant. Our civilization has only been here 5 or 6 thousand years.


Update April 21, 2018; A talk by Peter Kelemen - Columbia University

The title of the talk is too long but I will just summarize it. He is a geologist who is the expert on mantle rock formation. His talk which is a summary of works done by over 30 scientists in this field. His idea is to use the natural process that exist today in areas of the world where the tectonic plate shifts is taking place, and accelerate this process of extracting CO2 from the atmosphere. He estimate the venture will cost 40 billion dollars per year to mitigate and remove a significant amount of the manmade CO2 emissions. Sound like a viable solution if it can proven to work.

This is exciting since it is a different approach to fighting climate change. I am wondering how many billionaires will sign up and donate some of their fortunes to save the planet. How about it, Bill Gates and Jeff Bezos and Al Gore?

Unscientific Poll

What should we do in 2015 about Climate Change?

See results

Final Poll After Reading Both Hubs (Started 11/18/2015)

Have your opinion on climate change science moved one way or another?

See results

Projected US Energy Sources by the EIA

Flooding in Paris- Then and Now

An Inconvenient Truth - 10 years later 2016

One of the chart that struck me is the one Al Gore presented in the documentary film released in 2006. It depicts the projection of temperature rise due to man-made global warming. As you can see, it is a complete fabrication to scare people. Here is the official website. The prediction of increased number of hurricanes, rising oceans, disappearing glaciers, polar bears going extinct...all have not come to pass. What happened Al Gore? Please explain the discrepancy...Is the science of climate change really settled? Does 100% of scientists agree with you?

Truth or Distortion?

Latest Temperature Records ...2016

Mann Hockey Stick graph

Al Gore and the IPCC have bought into this. Now, they will have to live with the implications going forward...In particular, the steep rise in just the last 50 years. What will the actual temperature be in the next 25 years?

Projected for 2100...up up and away!!!

Glacier National Park 2017

Discrepancy Between Predicted Warming and Revised...

A New Question About Models? 2/2/2018

I attended a talk today on the intricacies of volcanic crystals. The speaker‘s research was on the makeup of magna in the depth of volcanos...and how to deternine their ages and their composition to help with future predictions of eruptions.

This gave me an inspiration and a philosophical question.

Why is it so hard for scientists to predict volcano erruptions and earthquakes in localized regions and yet they are so confident in their models to predict global climate years into the future?

Think about it. Does it seem reasonable or odd that this is the case?

Can someone explain this contradiction or dilemma?

Rising Oceans Projections...

Energy Production By Source in 2017

Postscript - October 2018

My latest realization on the climate debate. It may just be both sides are right. Let me explain my thought. First of all, we all agree that climate science is very complex. It is not a one answer fits all type of problem or solution. If I were to use math as an analogy. It is not as simple as 1 + 1 = 2. It is more like a differential equation with many variables and some are unknown.

Therefore, it is unfair to ask the simple question that what percent of the warming in recent years are due to human activity and what percent is natural causes?

The answer may be multi-faceted.

From all my interactions with scientists and layman, it is clear to me that there are at least two scenarios and both are in play in any given moment in time.

First, in ordinary periods, the natural variablility of our climate is small compared to the recent run up in fossil fuel use by humans. As the concentration of CO2 indicates, it has been rising steadily and has surpassed the 400ppm a few years ago and rising still. This is the scenario that most climate scientists adopt to be true and they also assume this to be the reality we face. Therefore, their estimate on climate change causation to be 95% human is understandable.

Second, in other extra ordinary periods, such as a weak sunspot cycle, or a major volcanic errption, or an asteroid striking from outer space, the effects of these natural occurances, though rare, can be major in its effect.

Therefore, combining both scenarios, the estimate on human contribution to climate change needs to be qualified and re-stated. It can be stated as a three part solution.

If condition A, Human contribution to climate change is 95% and natural causes 5%.

if Condition B, Human contribution is 50%, and natural causes 50%.

if Condition C, Human contribution is 5%, and natural cuases 95%.

Can you guess what condition C might be?


Finding Causation in the Noise

Climate change is hard to detect. The reason are many but one of the problem is climate is changing in nature. In fact, temperatures vary as much as 40 degrees F from day to night. Therefore, to detect a change of .5 degrees C over a decade is almost impossible. Another problem is looking at averages. In mathmatics and statistics, there is a thing called standard deviation. This indicator measures how much of a swing in data variation. For example, take a series of measurement over 10 years, 10, 11, 9, 10, 11, 9, 10, 11, 9, 10 and you will say the average is 10. However, another series of 10, 20, 0, 10, 20, 0, 10, 20, 0, 10 the average is also 10. The deviation in the first case is 10% while the deviation in the second case is 100%.

In climate change, we are looking for changes so small, it is hiding in the noise. In any given year, we have a large variation of temperatures around the globe. The science is trying to detect a small change over a long period of time. Climate cycles can be as long as 60 years and as short as 1 year. To extract a change due to one particular source is almost impossible. You would have to exclude all other natural elements that could come from a very long cycle and also may be random in nature such as a volcanic erruption.

So far, the change in warming of 0.5 degrees over the last 20 years is among the natural variability of the earth. I am not saying it is not human induced. I am just saying, it is not significant enough to say it is definitively outside of natural causes.

A new Observation - Oct. 4, 2018

Over the past year, I attended numerous talks given at the Lamont Dogherty Earth Observatory campus. I heard a talk by a vulcanologist on some details of volcanic activity. I head a talk by a seismologist on the science of tectonic plates and relations to earth quakes. Of couse, I heard numerious talks on the study of climate science.

In the first two cases, my question to the speakers at the end of their talk focused on why it is so hard to make predictions regarding volcanic erruptions or earth quakes and tsunamis. They had no answer. Apparently, these are real hard problems for scientists.

However, when it comes to climate science, which by all comparison are much more complex and much more global in its effects, they claim their various models are accurate in predicting our future climate.

As an engineer, I am perplexed. How is this possible? When we speak of a volcano, we are only talking about one mountain. When we speak about earth quakes, we are only talking about the ring of fire around our globe. There are two specific regions where volcanic activities are most active. Yet, these advanced models and sensors and all kinds of monitors cannot predict the next erruption or the next “big one.“

Climate science, covers our whole globe. It includes numerous natural cycles like the the sun, and moon and the major planets and the precession of the earth and earthquakes and volcanic activities and various climate related effects such as the jet stream and the North Atlantic oscillations and known la Nina and el Nino...

The 64 thousand dollars question is this. How can these climate scientists be so confident that their models are correct and that their projections for the next 30 years are true? Does anyone have an explanation?

A Page From A Manual on The Geology of Westchester Country - 1934

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2015 Jack Lee

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    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      7 weeks ago from Yorktown NY

      “To a hammer, everything else look like a nail.” - Mark Twain.

    • My Esoteric profile image

      Scott Belford 

      7 weeks ago from Keystone Heights, FL

      Lomborg stated: "Global warming is by no means our main environmental threat." - If that claim were actually true, then his book would have relevance. But it is not, as my examples should be convincing you of, so the book is pointless.

      I am not sure what adding antioxidants to your diet has to do with AWG.

    • My Esoteric profile image

      Scott Belford 

      7 weeks ago from Keystone Heights, FL

      More data:

      - In 2017, there was a quadruple famine - 4 separate starvation events at the same time - in Somalia, South Sudan, Nigeria, and Yemen which killed up to 20 million people that year. This is unprecedented. - This was predicted.

      - "Since 1950, most of the good stuff in plants we grow - protein, calcium, iron, vitamin C, just to name four - has declined by as much as 1/3 ... Even the protein content of bee (which are also disappearing due to AWG) pollen has dropped by a 1/3rd" - This was predicted.

      - In 2018, a study looking at the protein content of various strains of rice, a staple crop for over 2 billion people, found that as CO2 increased, nutrition provided by the rice declined (save for vitamin E). The impact imperiled the health of up to 600 million people. This was predicted.

      - Between 1995 and 2015, 2.3 billion people were negatively impacted (of which 157,000 were killed) due to inland flooding around the world enhanced or outright caused by AWG. This was also predicted.

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      7 weeks ago from Yorktown NY

      Here is one book recommendation for you...

      https://www.amazon.com/Cool-Movie-Tie-Skeptical-En...

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      7 weeks ago from Yorktown NY

      Scott, here is one article that disputes your theory...

      https://www.benefitsof.org/what-are-the-benefits-o...

      There are many others.

      There have been numerous books published also. Some even suggest the money spent on fighting global warming could be better used for other projects to help mankind.

      It is not just about climate but social and economic system. When you divert resources from one to another, there are consequences...

    • My Esoteric profile image

      Scott Belford 

      7 weeks ago from Keystone Heights, FL

      Jack, here is the problem, which I alluded to in the initial statement, with the migration north. 1) You can't just pick up an agriculture industry, croplands, farms, livelyhoods, etc. and simply plop them down hundreds of miles away every few decades. It just doesn't work that way.

      2) the further north you go in Canada and Russia, the worse the land is for growing things. It is true the land may improve over time through the centuries, but in the meantime, yields will collapse leading to mass starvation

      3) the further north you go, the shorter the growing season becomes because of less sunlight. That is a piece of physics which no amount of human adaptation can overcome. This will also lead to lower crop yields and mass starvation.

      Further, your "few degrees" warmer comment is very off-putting. Since you believed in the ozone hole and its effects on earth, why don't you believe in the disastrous effects of a "few degrees"? I can see you quibbling about the impact of a half of a degree, but to say that a 3, 4, 5, 6 degree world is anything but catastrophic is very surprising.

      By the way, while studies do show that while some grain does improve in size with heat, it also shows their yields and nutrition declines substantially because most of the extra growth is in fiber. That also has the effect of making these same plants less efficient in converting CO2 to O2.

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      7 weeks ago from Yorktown NY

      Scott,

      You presented some real data I will look into.

      But I am not convinced even if the warming is affecting the growing land mass, it is not alway a negative. If the earth warms on average a few degrees, the overall growing season will be longer and lead to greater food production. The fruitful region would migrate northward which means countries like Canada and Russia would benefit...

      Man adapters to the changing environment.

    • My Esoteric profile image

      Scott Belford 

      7 weeks ago from Keystone Heights, FL

      Jack - a point about your Ozone example. People fought (and a few still fight today) as hard against doing anything about that crisis as your side is fighting against doing anything about AWG today. Those who opposed the science then used the same arguments being used against science today.

      I am sure Doc covered this ground already, but, of course, I have my own spin having studied this for quite a while now. But even in 2015, this statement isn't true "The projections made on global temperature and climate due to increased CO2 concentrations did not come to fruition. " Some examples as to why (drawn from "The Uninhabitable Earth: Life After Warming" by David Wallace-Wells; a few have already been offered in other hubs)

      - Since 1980, there has been a 50-fold increase in dangerous heat waves. That is a prediction that came true by 2015

      - For every degree of warming, yields are estimated to decline, on average, 10%. That means by 2015, yields have declined 8%. Studies are showing this prediction is happening to one degree or another today

      - It was predicted that the natural growing belts will move north - they are, at about a rate of 160 miles each decade. The further north you move, the worse the soil becomes and will take centuries to improve.

      - There is a line running North to South, from Canada through Oklahoma to Mexico that separates wonderful farm lands to the East and poorer lands to the West. Since 1980, that line has moved East by a full 140 miles, reducing arable land.

      - A similar line separates the Sahara desert from rest of Africa. This line is moving South expanding the desert by 10% overall, and 18% during the winter.

      These are just a few examples of predictions that have come true as of 2015 which you claim haven't.

      -

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      2 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      By the way, anyone interested in which countries are, or are not, on track to meet their commitments under Paris, can see 'report cards' here:

      https://climateactiontracker.org/

      By and large, we are not on track to meet the primary Paris goal of no more than 2 C warming, let alone the "aspirational" target of no more than 1.5 C. That's not surprising, since the NDCs so far are known not to be sufficient to that goal, even if met. (That's why there's a mechanism to increase 'climate ambition' over time under the terms of the Accord.)

      The biggest group of nations by rating is "Insufficient". Only a couple of small countries are "sufficient", and no country is yet a "role model."

      On the other hand, quite a few countries are on track to meet the goals set forth in their NDSs, which means that Paris is already doing some good. But there's an urgent need to set better, more adequate goals. (Russia, a relatively large emitter on the world scale, is a bit of a poster child here: it is on track to meet its climate goals, but they are so weak that nevertheless its action is rated as "critically insufficient.")

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      2 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      What do I think of the demonstrations in New York?

      I think we are going to see more events like that, particularly if climate mitigation continues to be slow. I agree with the ER protesters that we do, in fact, face an emergency, and it is time--really, well past time--to be clear about that.

      I'm sure that quite a few people will find such actions excessive and difficult to understand. However, that tends to be the reaction to protest when it is sufficiently bold as to make ignoring it possible. I marched in Washington DC for climate in early 2017, and estimates put the number of marchers into 6 figures. I well remember the visceral power of the mass of people, particularly when we did a 'stadium wave' roar covering miles of downtown, including 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

      Yet media coverage, except Democracy Now, was largely pretty perfunctory, and the political establishment ignored us completely. When that happens--when polite people, who have all the proper permits and follow all the legal and social niceties that they can think of, who take enormous pains, and speak with great clarity--when they are ignored, you will see people taking measures that are more "inconvenient", more "extreme".

      It happened with the civil rights movement in the 1960s. Read Dr. King's famous Letter From A Birmingham Jail:

      "While confined here in the Birmingham city jail, I came across your recent statement calling my present activities "unwise and untimely." ... You deplore the demonstrations taking place in Birmingham. But your statement, I am sorry to say, fails to express a similar concern for the conditions that brought about the demonstrations. I am sure that none of you would want to rest content with the superficial kind of social analysis that deals merely with effects and does not grapple with underlying causes. It is unfortunate that demonstrations are taking place in Birmingham, but it is even more unfortunate that the city's white power structure left the Negro community with no alternative."

      https://www.africa.upenn.edu/Articles_Gen/Letter_B...

      Since you have chosen not to believe the evidence I and others have attempted to lay before you, Jack, you will naturally not feel any urgency around this issue. Naturally, then, you will view (perhaps with pity) demonstrators for climate as unfortunate dupes and puppets, or worse (and with condemnation rather than pity) cynical manipulators and opportunists.

      However, for those of us who have examined that evidence and found it persuasive, we cannot but fail to be highly concerned--indeed, alarmed--by the resistance of the political and social establishment to effective action in an area that, as we've discussed, poses an existential threat to our society as a whole, and potentially to any of us as individuals.

      Put plainly, we see lives, including ours, at risk. We will not fail to act to persuade everyone that this is not acceptable--even if it means ridicule, jail, or the kind of danger faced already by some in the climate science community:

      https://hubpages.com/politics/Green-Fascism-Let-Th...

      Is that truly so hard to understand?

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      2 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      NOYFOB asked:

      "Maybe you can tell us what is being accomplished by the Paris Accord countries in response to Climate change control?"

      Yes, I think that I can help somewhat. There is far more going on than anyone can keep track of, but let me give you a couple of pointers, one more general and on a larger scale, and one encompassing more local and smaller scale projects.

      First, we are seeing an energy revolution unfold in front of our eyes. Ten or fifteen years ago, coal generation was king around the world. Now, it is on the ropes, losing out to renewable energy--primarily, in terms of growth rates--wind and solar.

      It's not a sacrifice, because in most cases, building new solar or wind capacity is cheaper than building new coal capacity. In fact, in many cases--already, in the US, a majority of cases!--*it is actually cheaper to build and operate new wind or solar than to continue operating existing coal plants!*

      The result is that we're seeing developing nations moving away from coal and toward renewable energy. That possibility was part of the reason that the world was finally able to reach a comprehensive agreement in the form of the Paris Accord. At the same time, the commitments made in the Accord have helped drive down financing costs for wind and solar energy.

      The result is that global RE development is growing at a terrific rate:

      https://www.irena.org/Statistics/View-Data-by-Topi...

      The undisputed leader today in deployment of wind and solar power is China, which has roughly a third of the world's RE capacity. It has achieved this through very large investments, and multiple rounds of increased 'ambition'. For instance:

      "China’s 2020 targets for solar PV have been ratcheted up several times, rising from an initial target of 1.8 GW set in 2008, to 105 GW in the 13th Five-Year Plan set at the end of 2016. Recent discussions are looking to 210 GW or beyond."

      https://www.iea.org/newsroom/news/2019/february/is...

      This, despite the fact that many folks were convinced--and a few still are, despite all evidence to the contrary--and "China and India will never give up coal." It will take some time to get to that point--there is a large existing infrastructure that isn't going away tomorrow, and in fact some coal plants are still being built, though far fewer than in the recent past--but it's clear that that renewable energy is winning, and figures to win bigger and bigger going forward. Partly it's economics, and partly it's the urgent need to stop emitting carbon to the atmosphere, as codified in the Paris Accord.

      The second area I want to highlight is what is being done with the money donated to the Green Climate Fund, the primary vehicle of the Paris Accord's program to assist developing nations to mitigate emissions and to adapt to climate change and its consequences. So far the fund is badly undersubscribed, to be frank.

      Nevertheless, they have begun funding projects with what they have. You can see their website, here:

      https://www.greenclimate.fund/home

      To sum up the GCF, they are an independent agency, set up to administer the funds donated, governed by an independent Board, and headquartered in South Korea. Money does not go to 'UN bureaucrats' nor to local governments.

      Specific arrangements vary by project. Some of the things the GCF is doing now:

      --Rural electrification

      --Developing robust financial institutions to support RE and energy efficiency projects in multiple countries

      --Water supply

      --Aiding selected cities to fund infrastructure development contributing to "Green Cities" initiatives

      --Adaptive measures for smallholder farmers vulnerable to climate change

      --Kickstarting utility-scale solar PV in NIgeria

      If you take time to browse the projects, you'll note that almost all of them--all of the ones I've looked at, in fact--involve co-funders such as NGOs or development banks. Clearly, they are trying to get the maximum 'bang for the buck.'

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      2 months ago from Yorktown NY

    • bradmasterOCcal profile image

      Brad 

      3 months ago

      Doc Snow

      Problem solved, maybe it will catch on.

      But the point is that the main thing they are spending their 100s of billions is on infrastructure.

      Maybe you can tell us what is being accomplished by the Paris Accord countries in response to Climate change control?

      The other climate change control believers don't seem to have an answer.

      Cool Avatar

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      3 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      Um, Brad, why exactly do you think they built a wall extending up 8 meters above current sea level, extending for kilometers?

      Hint: Lagos has had a bad flooding problem for years, which has been getting steadily worse.

      A random example from 2017:

      https://www.premiumtimesng.com/news/top-news/23634...

    • bradmasterOCcal profile image

      Brad 

      3 months ago

      Jack

      Does this sound like people are worried about climate change?

      Building Africa's City in the Sea - theb1m.com

      [Search domain www.theb1m.com/video/building-africas-city-in-the-sea] https://www.theb1m.com/video/building-africas-city...

      Despite its current challenges, the State of Lagos and the Nigerian government are working to elevate the city to become the economic centre of West Africa and the financial heart of the entire African continent. Above: Eko Atlantic is set to become the new financial heart of Africa (image courtesy of Eko Atlantic/South Energyx Nigeria Limited).

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      3 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Here is one reason our climate models are incomplete...

      https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2019/05/scientists...

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      3 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      RMK, of course the adjustments aren't random; the whole point of making them is to remove systemic biases that exist in the data--which, it is important to note, was not intended for climatic study, but rather for operational weather forecasting. As such, it was not originally important to maintain what's called "homogenous" data. If measurement techniques improved--as they did over time, repeatedly--then that by definition introduced a systematic bias, since if there were no change it wouldn't count as an "improvement", and since it was system-wide. It was great that the temperatures were more accurate after the introduction of, say, the Stevenson screen, but it also meant that daily highs were suddenly not as high as previously measured.

      But for climate studies, that doesn't work. The climate didn't change when the Stevenson screen came in, just the technique used to observe temperature. So, to get an accurate picture, adjustments are necessary.

      If you really get into the weeds, you'll find that in fact there are corrections working both ways--that is, some increase apparent warming while others decrease it. But on balance there has been a greater effect in the former direction than in the latter.

      Jack, you say that "If warming does not continue, and it can’t at the rate they projected..."

      However, there's no evidence that that is true, and ample evidence of the reverse. As we've previously discussed, the IPCC projections found in AR5, the most recent Assessment Report, give a possible range of warming up to about 5 C above pre-Industrial by the end of the present century, depending largely on choices we collectively make about emissions in the next couple of decades.

      The actual wording:

      "Under the assumptions of the concentration-driven RCPs, global mean surface temperatures for 2081–2100, relative to 1986–2005 will likely be in the 5 to 95% range of the CMIP5 models; 0.3°C to 1.7°C (RCP2.6), 1.1°C to 2.6°C (RCP4.5), 1.4°C to 3.1°C (RCP6.0), 2.6°C to 4.8°C (RCP8.5)..."

      https://www.ipcc.ch/site/assets/uploads/2018/02/WG...

      So the worst-case math looks like this:

      4.8C/~94 years between the 'midpoint' years of the two reference periods = 0.051 C/year, on average

      Now, that *is* higher than the observed rate of warming over the last 30 years, which, depending on the data set, is ~0.017 C/year--higher, in fact, by a factor of about three.

      But that's the 'worst case' math. Let's work it the other way, figuring from the observed warming:

      0.017 x 94 = 1.6 C

      That falls within the ranges of three of the four scenarios given.

      Now, let's consider some very basic realities.

      First up is the fact that the world's carbon emissions are at a record high. That means that, even if they leveled off right now, that far more greenhouse gases would be added to the atmosphere between now and 2091 than were added over the past 94 years.

      Therefore, the greenhouse forcing would also be greater over the coming 94 years.

      Second is the fact that many climate feedbacks take several decades to have an effect. For instance, the albedo feedback of Arctic sea ice is easily understood: with less summer ice, more solar radiation is absorbed by the ocean. Since 1979, the mean daily ice extent has decreased by about 35%, from an average of ~7 million km2 in the first few years to a present average of ~4.5 million in recent years.

      Therefore, the albedo feedback exerted by a decreased arctic ice cap over the coming years will be significantly greater than historical norms--even if, against all logic, the ice should stop declining!

      Similar patterns apply to things like the water vapor feedback, the methane feedback, and more.

      The bottom line is that *acceleration* of warming would not be at all surprising.

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      3 months ago from Yorktown NY

      The problem with this approach is that they are short sighted and will be exposed as fraud down the road. If warming does not continue, and it can’t at the rate they projected, they will loose their credibility.

    • Readmikenow profile image

      Readmikenow 

      3 months ago

      Interesting article from Investor's Business Daily

      “That is, until the NOAA's statisticians "adjust" the data. Using complex statistical models, they change the data to reflect not reality, but their underlying theories of global warming. That's clear from a simple fact of statistics: Data generate random errors, which cancel out over time. So by averaging data, the errors mostly disappear.

      That's not what NOAA does

      .

      According to the NOAA, the errors aren't random. They're systematic. As we noted, all of their temperature adjustments lean cooler in the distant past, and warmer in the more recent past. But they're very fuzzy about why this should be.

      Far from legitimately "adjusting" anything, it appears they are cooking the data to show a politically correct trend toward global warming. Not by coincidence, that has been part and parcel of the government's underlying policies for the better part of two decades.”

      https://www.investors.com/politics/editorials/the-...

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      3 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      "The human component is a small element and hard to quantify. It is by no means the dominant force..."

      At the present time, the weight of evidence very strongly suggests the contrary. That is not to say that natural forces could not become much stronger drivers, in principle at least. But observations are enough to demonstrate very clearly that no natural forcings are currently operating as primary drivers of the observed temperature trend.

      It is quite true that quantifying the human--or for that matter, natural--forcings is hard. But impressive successes have been achieved. See, for instance, Chapter 8 of the WG I portion of AR5, from 2015. You can find it here:

      https://www.ipcc.ch/report/ar5/wg1/anthropogenic-a...

      If you would like a quick takeaway relative to the current point, I'd suggest clicking on "graphics" and then on Figure 8.20, which presents climate forcings since 1750.

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      3 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Mike, the earth is definitely not static like a real green house. That is why the simple “green house” analogy is insufficient to explain climate change. There are multiply forces and cycles and natural events at works. The human component is a small element and hard to quantify. It is by no means the dominant force. Hence, the AGW theory cannot be the end all of all this. Time will tell but I am betting on mother nature.

    • Readmikenow profile image

      Readmikenow 

      3 months ago

      Is the Earth self-correcting?

      NASA Study: Mass Gains of Antarctic Ice Sheet Greater than Losses

      "A new NASA study says that an increase in Antarctic snow accumulation that began 10,000 years ago is currently adding enough ice to the continent to outweigh the increased losses from its thinning glaciers.

      The research challenges the conclusions of other studies, including the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) 2013 report, which says that Antarctica is overall losing land ice."

      https://www.nasa.gov/feature/goddard/nasa-study-ma...

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      3 months ago from Yorktown NY

      I would agree we should end subsidies to all fossil fuel industries and to farmers...

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      3 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      "There is a middle ground where we do the prudent thing about climate and allow the people to have a better standard of living, which fossil fuel provides at this point in time."

      Jack, you are quite correct that in practical terms compromises are constantly necessary in life. For instance, right now I'm driving with seriously worn suspension parts, because I've been putting off installing the replacements in order to manage my finances, judging that the danger posed is relatively small. (But I think next week may be the week I get that job done; compromise can go too far.)

      However, inaction on climate is not 'middle ground.' It is an extreme choice, which only seems moderate because it is familiar. Increasing the CO2 mixing ratio of our atmosphere by over 46% is not 'moderate'.

      Nor is pulling the US out of the Paris Accord 'moderate': NDCs are *voluntary*, and the provisions of Paris were in large part determined by the policy demands made by 20 years of US climate negotiation. A moderate course of action would have been to alter terms, or adjust payments, but to remain engaged. Instead, this Administration chose the action best designed to blow up the whole Accord. No surprise, given that among their biggest supporters have been gas, oil, and petrochemical interests.

      I would humbly suggest that ending all subsidies for fossil fuels, such as the exploration tax credit, and instituting a realistic price on carbon emissions, would be a 'moderate' step. It won't impoverish people if it is done in a revenue-neutral manner and the money is returned to the economy. In fact, it would, according to several analyses, probably be a net economic gain to society because it would improve public health and consequently increase labor productivity.

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      3 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      Note that the piece does not, in fact present actual evidence of its claims, beyond the fact that some professional honors have been withheld from climate change-denying members. And that's not evidence, since it's equally compatible with the hypothesis that the societies in question were correctly choosing not to endorse viewpoints they find incompatible with scientific and social responsibility, and frankly, truth.

      Note, also, that the argument presented is not very coherent. You've mentioned the "money corrupts everything" argument, which seems to be present, all right:

      "...many of the world’s primary professional societies have changed from being paragons of technical virtue to opportunistic groups focused on maximizing their members' financial gains in support of the climate scare..."

      Now, I've never found that a very persuasive argument, because if promoting "financial gain" were the object, they wouldn't have been saying, as they have in essence, "this is a clear and present danger to society and we need to move our focus toward policy actions"; they'd have been saying "this is an enormous potential danger to society and we need to ramp up research spending in order to discover more about it, and preferably the sort of research that is performed by our members."

      However, Harris and Lehr aren't content with "it's all about the money," they have to assert, rather incongruously, that maybe it's really all about making the world safe for socialism:

      " The long march through the Institutions" as proposed by the Frankfurt school back in the 1930s was launched knowing it would be a generations long policy. Here we are three generations on and they have now taken control of all the western institutions as planned. The socialists do not stop just because their prime construct, the USSR failed in 1990. They regard that failure as simply work in progress. The climate as a tool which can never be tamed, was a genuine piece of strategic genius by the COGS (constantly offended green socialists). They will not stop. The destruction of humanity is too big a prize, they view this activity as pressing the Earth’s reset button."

      That's even less credible, and utterly at odds with the "money corrupts" hypothesis.

      In my view, Harris and Lehr are basically well into 'sour grapes' territory. They can't accept that their side lost the scientific debate long ago, so they grope for alternate explanations.

      Either that, or they are paid for propaganda. After all::

      "According to Harris's archived profile at APCO Worldwide... has worked with oil and gas, coal, nuclear, environmental and aerospace clients for whom he has conducted effective media and public relations campaigns.” His profile also highlights how he has “worked with private companies and trade associations to successfully position these entities and their interests with media and before various government committees and regulatory bodies.” "

      https://www.desmogblog.com/tom-harris

      As for Lehr, was known formerly to be on Phillip Morris's payroll to deny the health dangers of tobacco, and is currently an official with the Heartland Institute, which has a very definite political agenda--Lehr himself calls it "Libertarian."

      https://www.desmogblog.com/jay-h-lehr

      And while he also claimed that it hadn't received funding from oil and gas interests in some time--a claim impossible to vet since they are no longer required to disclose their donations--it is a matter of record that they were heavily funded by Exxon for many years in their earlier history. A suggestive fact regarding their present bent is that gas and oil interests were the leading source of campaign donations for Heartland's new President, former Kansas Rep Tim Huelskamp, who took over from Joe Bast in 2017.

      https://www.desmogblog.com/heartland-institute

      As you say, "Money has a way of corrupting everything."

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      3 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Doc, what if this is true...?

      https://pjmedia.com/news-and-politics/sciences-unt...

      Money has a way of corrupting everything.

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      3 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Doc, life is full of compromises and climate change is no different.

      Do you know if the phone company would design a system for the worst case scenario, like on Mother’s day, the system would cost twice as much...most of the time, it would be under utilized.

      There is a middle ground where we do the prudent thing about climate and allow the people to have a better standard of living, which fossil fuel provides at this point in time.

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      3 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      "On wind power": full of falsehoods and tired talking points, not meriting detailed rebuttal. Or, more properly, re-rebuttal.

      "Risk management": a ludicrous analogy. While witches may exist in some sense--I've met a few folks over the years who claim to be such--there is every reason to believe that their supposed 'powers' do not. By contrast, climate change most certainly does, and there is every reason to believe that human activities can and do contribute to it.

      Keep building those straw men, people. It's fun applying the flame.

      "Since when we humans have done so on anything else?"

      How many insurance policies do you carry?

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      3 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Doc,

      Do you believe as this article states

      https://wattsupwiththat.com/2019/05/22/claim-we-sh...

      Since when we humans have done so on anything else?

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      3 months ago from Yorktown NY

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      4 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      Yes. As they say in the article, "Prediction is hard, especially about the future."

      "Who knows what new inventions can change the current green house effect?"

      Well, I know some: the solar panel, modern wind turbine, and modern battery technologies are doing so now, and with suitable policy decisions, can do much more in the future.

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      4 months ago from Yorktown NY

      I think the bigger point is making predictions about the future is hard. Very hard. Even experts gets it wrong most of the times. Not because they are dishonest but because they just don’t anticipate changes down the road that can affect the outcome. It always starts with “assume things continue as now...” and a straight line prediction follows... but, life is more complex and does not always move in a straight line. Who knows what new inventions can change the current green house effect?

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      4 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      Read the Atlantic article. I don't perceive it as saying that you shouldn't trust experts; I see it saying that the best forecasters are expert integrators and collaborators--generalists rather than specialists.

      People like, for instance, Michael Mann. ;-)

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      4 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      !) "Doc, that is your interpretation."

      Sure, but you asked!

      2) "Is this something we should explore and study instead of crying wolf on CO2 increased concentration due to human activities?"

      No, because this has nothing to do with the increase in CO2 or its human causation. All he is saying is that over time the oceans will keep taking up CO2, albeit less quickly as temperature warms. That has nothing to do with what's driving observed trends.

      It is also nothing that wasn't known. Had Dr. Mazziele--hope I spelled that right--done a literature check, as he would have had to do in a real scientific publication, I'm pretty sure we would have found a lot on the topic. I know that the issue of oceanic take up of CO2 has been an important focus since at least 1958, and I know that the relevant chemistry is included in fully-coupled climate models.

      3) Haven't read the link yet, as if I click away I'll lose this comment. Sure, sole reliance on any given class of information or informant probably isn't the best idea... but surely experts are much better and more reliable than cranks, political hacks, lobbyists, or propagandists?

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      4 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Doc,

      Don’t rely solely on “experts” as rhis article clearly demonstrates.

      https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2019/...

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      4 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Doc, what do you think of this?

      https://wattsupwiththat.com/2019/05/18/co2-and-oce...

      Is this something we should explore and study instead of crying wolf on CO2 increased concentration due to human activities?

      Not a denier but a skeptic when it comes to AGW.

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      4 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Doc, that is your interpretation. Alternatively, perhaps the people of Australia, given the choice of drastic measures to combat climate change or a measured approach, chose the latter. Perhaps, loosing jobs and reduced standard of living, and having reliable electricity weighs more on the people’s mind than the dire predictions of climate change.

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      4 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      How the heck would I know? Folks who pay close attention to the Australian scene don't understand what happened.

      I just hope it's not a policy disaster from the climate point of view. The extremism of former PM Tony Abbott in this regard--and I see he is as of now also a 'former politician,' having gone down to defeat in his home riding--seems to have been rejected by the Liberal Party. But they still surely have a population of climate change deniers in their ranks. Moreover, Labor campaigned on addressing climate change, and lost an election that was seemingly theirs to win. That can't be a good thing for the planet--or if it can, I can't imagine how. Just when we need serious, concentrated global action the most urgently, Australia seems to have gone for, at best, half measures.

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      4 months ago from Yorktown NY

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      4 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Brad, you are right. Extreme weather has been around forever. People just have a short memory. I am just not so sure, we can effect it in any big way. Even if we were to stop using fossil fuel, as all the green party supporters seems to want, it will not change these events.

      Besides, we really don’t have a viable alternative energy source anything soon.

    • bradmasterOCcal profile image

      Brad 

      4 months ago

      Jack

      To me it is not a question about whether the world is warming up, but what is the problem today, the near future and the future.

      Weather always changes, and quite frankly it has never been good for the world. The droughts, the typhoons, hurricanes etc have been around for ever. Changing temperature and Changing clime may be better or just different, but is it a path to the destruction of the Earth as many predict.

      If the threat to destruction is real, then I don't see the world countries really acting as if that was true.

      Another fact that favors the lack of action is the increasing projects on infrastructure around the world. For example, so major airports around the world are spending Billions on expanding airports to handle increases of tens of millions of more passengers due to the trend of increased population.

      There is no green solution to power the super airplanes of today and tomorrow, And that would have needed to be resolve for any solution.

      The world is building huge new infrastructures, but what are they building to reduce or stop the climate temperature?

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      4 months ago from Yorktown NY

      The answer is simple. Look at the growth of population and housing boom, that is why they need more reserviors.

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      4 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      Again, I can find no evidence whatever that there is any 20-year periodicity in California drought, even though some folks like to claim this as a 'fact'. And if there were--that is, if this were a matter of natural cycles--why would CA need new reservoirs? They last much longer than 20 years, after all.

      While California forest management policy may well be in need of improvement, it has not created the serious droughts that we have seen, nor is it responsible for the observed lengthening of the fire season into a year-long affair. It is not responsible for the measurably warmer temperatures, which increase the drying of the soil. (And which, in a seeming paradox, also increases the intensity of precipitation when it does come.)

      And it's definitely not responsible for increased wildfire risk elsewhere in the American west--also a measured trend.

      As to California's budget, yes, they tax quite a bit, but they do so in order to provide more services than do many states. And yes, there is waste--I'd argue, as I did above, that curbing California's over-incarceration might be a good place to start. But regardless, the point is, there are serious constraints on what is available for fire prevention--and it keeps getting swallowed up by mounting fire-fighting costs--and not just in California:

      2017:

      https://www.dailynews.com/2017/12/07/rising-costs-...

      Over budget by a factor of nearly 2--$442 million budgeted, over $770 million spent

      2018:

      http://fortune.com/2018/09/06/california-fire-2018...

      2019:

      https://www.redding.com/story/news/2019/05/09/new-...

      Looking to spend over $1 billion, all told. Let's hope it's not such a bad year this year.

      US:

      https://www.fs.fed.us/about-agency/budget-performa...

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      4 months ago from Yorktown NY

      California does not have a funding problem...they have one of the highest tax rates among the 50 States, and NY and NJ is not far behind. The problem has always been spending and waste and abuse. The poor policies of land and forest management has created the fire problem and exasperated the drought situation in CA. The “green” governor of CA also did not do enough to build reservoirs as population increased...to anticipate the periodic drought conditions, which comes approximately every 20 years or so...

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      4 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      I think that's an amazing piece of spin.

      While it may well be true that California regulations could be improved in order to facilitate controlled burns and other thinning efforts, it does not follow that climate change plays no role in increased drought and fire risk. Nor does the fact that mega-droughts can arise from natural causes imply that anthropogenic climate change can't do so too, any more than the fact that natural heart attacks occur means that murder never does.

      Furthermore, I would suggest that a major factor in much of the backlog in forest management work has nothing to do regulation; rather, it's a pretty good bet that the main culprit is budgetary constraints imposed by California's restrictions on taxes, which are known to have resulted in real financial constraints. (California's prison industry doesn't help in that regard, either--now, there is an overinflated (and extremely expensive) institution.) It's ironic that those (like the current author) most bitterly opposed to action on climate are usually also those most bitterly opposed to proper funding of government agencies, including those tasked with fighting fire.

      In this connection, note how the author blames California for shifting funds from fire prevention to fire-fighting--as if it were a deliberate choice. The same pattern is visible at the national level in the US, and it's not because the agencies don't want to do prevention. It's because they are chronically underfunded and fire seasons are lengthening and becoming more severe, and "protecting communities" is always going to be priority #1. Thus, resources needed for fire-fighting increasingly cannibalize funding for prevention.

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      4 months ago from Yorktown NY

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      4 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      Jack, you're changing the subject a bit here; the point wasn't the Palmer Adelies per se, it was that most of those projections were reasonable.

      On the extinction front, though, you're basically putting forward a "nothing to see here, folks" line.

      Well, there *is* something to see. Yes, extinctions happen--but we are in the process of creating a real wave of them. See this:

      https://owlcation.com/stem/Elizabeth-Kolberts-The-...

      "The problem with climate change is placing the blame on humans only. There are many natural phenomenon that can cause the same results..."

      Not currently going on, there aren't. That's been examined in detail, and there are no known natural forcings that can account for the temperature trends we see today.

      "If humans were to disappear tomorrow, do you think the planet will be perfect? If not, then obviously, we can’t be blamed for everything that is going wrong."

      A logical non sequitur. The effects we are causing could well dominate everything else going on now, without implying that non-human forcings wouldn't still exist in a future without us.

      Anyway, it's a mis-framing to make this a case of 'blaming us for everything.' The smart and responsible thing for us to do is to take responsibility for what we *are* causing, in order to mitigate the harm.

      "If anything, we as a species, have done more to save endangered species than any other group. Wouldn’t you agree?"

      Yes, but it's a misleading framing of the question, because we're the *only* species that intentionally sets out to save other species. We're number one in a class of one.

      But the sad reality is that the species we have saved are generally saved from problems that we created for them in the first place (historically, usually by overexploiting them (as for instance egrets, or bison), or by intentional eradication efforts (as for instance various raptor species, or wolves).

      Worse yet, there's a lot of species we *didn't* save from our worst selves: dodos and passenger pigeons are famous North American examples, and there are quite a few species on the brink now. A few mammalian examples:

      https://www.dw.com/en/8-species-on-the-brink-in-20...

      Overall, the biosphere has been doing a whole lot worse since we started industrializing. Our technological prowess hasn't been matched with a comparable wisdom--at least, not where the 'rubber meets the road.'

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      4 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Sorry to hear about the penguins. But it does not change the fact that species comes and goes all on its own...for a variety of reasons. We have new species all the time and old ones going extinct...it is all party of the life cycle.

      The problem with climate change is placing the blame on humans only. There are many natural phenomenon that can cause the same results...

      If humans were to disappear tomorrow, do you think the planet will be perfect? If not, then obviously, we can’t be blamed for everything that is going wrong. If anything, we as a species, have done more to save endangered species than any other group. Wouldn’t you agree?

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      4 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      And I disagree. That was why I spent so much time examining a set of them that we mutually selected, with a procedure as objective as I could make it, given the nature of the problem and the available information.

      As you remember, the result was mixed: while many projections--that's a better word in many of the cases than "predictions" because often the outcomes were contingent upon actions not yet made when the projection was issued--were inexact, very few were unfounded.

      A good example is the prediction of the Palmer Station Adelie penguin population, which I just updated the other day. (You may have missed it.)

      The original prediction was that they would be locally extinct by 2015, which was rated as a 3 out of 4, because while the timeline was too aggressive, the population was observed to be in catastrophic decline.

      Unfortunately that trend continues in 2019. According to biologist James McClintock interviewed by phone from Palmer Station:

      "The population of 15,000 breeding pairs of Adelie penguins has reached a new low. It's down to 1,100 this year. So over 90 percent of them are disappearing."

      In fact, the population is now down to just over 7% of its previous norm, and still declining.

      In fact, 9 of the 14 projections/predictions examined were rated 3 or 4, and none received a 0 ('no resemblance between outcome and prediction').

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      4 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Doc, the point is predictions were over blown and now it is hard to believe their credibility...

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      4 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      Hmm, that article doesn't seem to get too deep into "predictions"--unlike us. (But I didn't read past the digital 'fold' so maybe there's more further on.) All it really talked about was crude oil. And personally, I'd be glad if we *were* really running out of it. That would be an easier technological fix.

      Then it says "According to the Environmental Protection Agency’s latest air quality trends report, the combined emissions of the six common air pollutants have decreased 73 percent between 1970 and 2017." And I'm sure that's true.

      But for me it begs the question, what's the delta on that been *since* the beginning of 2017? Given that pretty much every Trump appointee to a regulatory body has been an industry lobbyist opposed to environmental regulation, it wouldn't be too surprising if we saw that benign declining trend in air pollution start to reverse itself.

      Foxes, henhouses...

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      4 months ago from Yorktown NY

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      5 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      "Climate alarmists tell us that the Earth has never been warmer, and that we can tell by looking at tree rings, treelines, and other proxy indicators..."

      Um, no.

      Short version: Not sure who these "climate alarmists" are that Mr. Watts is speaking of, but scientists have consistently placed the height of warmth during the current interglacial at several thousand years back. We've even spoken about it before.

      https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/c/c...

      So he's tilting at a strawman.

      Longer version: all of the above, plus the observation that there is, as shown in the graphs, considerable uncertainty about the temperature several millennia ago. As shown, present-day temps MAY in fact be higher than the height of the last interglacial--or not. But even if they are, they haven't been higher for very long.

      As you yourself observe, it takes a while to melt lots of ice--and the temperatures 5,000 years ago had been elevated a lot longer than current ones are--even if the latter are continuing to rise, as we in fact observe.

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      5 months ago from Yorktown NY

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      5 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      Thanks for expanding on that point.

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      5 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Doc,

      I would not go so far. I do believe in the strong human will to survive in any harsh environment. We humans have always rise to the occasion otherwise, we would be extinct like so many other animal species. Adapt or die out.

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      5 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      Interesting theological perspective. I would note, in this context, the remarkable tendency of humankind to expand into all sorts of ecological niches which are way beyond those for which our bodies are naturally adapted--the indigenous peoples of the Arctic being an extreme case in point. For them, their clothing technologies are the key to survival--true of many societies, of course, but most markedly for the Arctic peoples.

      Would you link this to the Fall, and thus human sinfulness in general, or do you see it as simply another example of the ingenuity with which we were gifted?

      (I hope I'm not prying to ask; these perspectives are not mine, as you would probably expect, and I'm curious.)

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      5 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Just like men was not meant to fly like birds, they were not designed by God to live on water...or beneath the water or up in space. That is what I mean by against our natural tendencies. We are meant to live off the land on earth, until the 2nd Coming.

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      5 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      Yes, they want it to be affordable, but it sounds... exclusive.

      That said, I don't quite understand why it would be "against nature?" Are the folks on Lake Titicaca in Peru against nature?

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uru_people

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      5 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Doc, you are right. I am skeptical of this as well...too expensive and not sure it can stand category 5 storms...and just goes against nature. I have heard some other exotic proposals in the past, like a floating city, or underwater world...or 2001 a space odessey...with people living on the moon or around earth or its...

      I don’t think God ever intended that for humans.

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      5 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      My flip reaction is: "Hey, maybe we could put all the climate refugees there, if no nation is willing to take them."

      Then again--provided any of these actual get built--maybe they'd become trendy, and the poor and displaced would be frozen out. They sound pretty nice to me.

      But if you detect a tone of skepticism in my quick reactions, you're right. At best, this would be an adaptive measure--which are necessary, certainly, and going to be increasingly so--but not something that addresses the primary problem we face.

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      5 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Doc, what do you think of this novel idea?

      https://www.businessinsider.com/un-floating-city-h...

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      5 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      A couple of new comments you may have missed:

      https://hubpages.com/politics/Climate-Change-Predi...

      The one about paleoclimate modeling in particular made me think of you, Jack.

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      5 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      You likely won't have the opportunity, Jack! ;-)

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      5 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Doc, great, I will hold you to that promise.

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      5 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      Good news for California, indeed. And I certainly welcome it. The Golden State certainly could use a break in the weather/climate department after the past few years.

      For climate change? Hardly. However welcome this year's 'bumper' snowpack may be, it doesn't by itself have any prognostic value. Put a few good years together, and then maybe there's something to talk about or to consider.

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      5 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Doc,

      Good news for climate change and for California...

      https://www.mercurynews.com/2019/04/02/sierra-neva...

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      5 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      Jack, you may have missed it, but I posted a comment noting an update on global alpine glacier ice loss, as observed over time, and particularly the last decade. The results show a accelerating trend--really, I should say a drastically accelerating trend:

      https://hubpages.com/politics/Climate-Change-Predi...

      I'd be interested in your view.

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      5 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      Thanks for a substantive contribution, tsad. However, the numbers I previously provided came from a reputable source. Where does yours come from?

      I'll also add this result to the mix:

      https://www.nature.com/articles/ngeo1999'

      "Here we analyse radiative forcing and temperature time series with state-of-the-art statistical methods to address this question without climate model simulations. We show that long-term trends in total radiative forcing and temperatures have largely been determined by atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations, and modulated by other radiative factors. We identify a pronounced increase in the growth rates of both temperatures and radiative forcing around 1960, which marks the onset of sustained global warming. Our analyses also reveal a contribution of human interventions to two periods when global warming slowed down."

      I tried to find the source of your claim, since you didn't give one, but it did not come up via search. However, I did find this:

      "The oceans contain 37,400 billion tons (GT) of suspended carbon, land biomass has 2000-3000 GT. The atmosphere contains 720 billion tons of CO2 and humans contribute only 6 GT additional load on this balance. The oceans, land and atmosphere exchange CO2 continuously so the additional load by humans is incredibly small."

      That's from here:

      https://noconsensus.wordpress.com/2008/12/06/ten-g...

      If you do the math, 6 GT works out to be ~0.015% of the total of the three carbon reservoirs he considers. That's at least reasonably close to your 0.012%.

      But that's some serious sleight of hand. Why? Because it is like comparing one's bank account with one's monthly or weekly expenditures. It can provide a good index of one's financial status, but has little to say about whether or not one's budget balances.

      Let's break it down in detail. First of all, what we're talking about is greenhouse *gases*. That's what affects the Earth's radiative balance. So the amount of carbon stored in "suspended carbon" in the oceans is completely irrelevant from a radiative point of view. Subtracting out the 37,400 GT, we now find that we're at ~0.16%.

      Second, terrestrial biomass doesn't affect the radiative balance, either. So we subtract the 720 GT, and that gets us to 0.2%--or 0.3%, if we take the lower estimate given by Mr. Id.

      But the main thing is that we're still comparing stocks to fluxes--that is, the bank balance to expenditures and income--when the main point isn't our overall wealth, but how our financial choices are affecting it over time. To know whether human activities are changing the atmospheric balance, we have to know what the natural fluxes are, because those are the other 'expenditures' and 'income' affecting the budget. So, what does Mr. Id say about those?

      This: "The oceans, land and atmosphere exchange CO2 continuously."

      Do you see a number in that statement? I sure hope not, because there isn't one. Yet that is the crucial number to know. Why would Mr. Id give irrelevant numbers, but omit the crucial ones that you need to know to make a judgment?

      I'll leave that to you to answer.

      But the numbers I presented are not false (though it's possible that they may be refined and improved by future research). They are solidly grounded. The original source of the summary figure I provided is here:

      https://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/features/CarbonC...

      NASA's Earth Observatory lab is a highly reputable source, whether you are willing to admit it or not.

      So, yes, the human contribution to the atmospheric CO2 'surplus' is about 4.5% per year. Since pre-Industrial times, the change that that relatively small imbalance has driven has now reached over 46%. (410/280 x 100% - 100%).

      And that is confirmed by isotopic analysis of atmospheric carbon dioxide--we have pre-Industrial samples from ice cores--which have changed in a way that is a chemical 'fingerprint' for fossil fuel burning. If you like, I can provide sources on that, too.

    • tsadjatko profile image

      5 months ago from now on

      "And still nothing substantial to say, I see.

      Oh, well." ~ doc snow

      Well here is some substance that demonstrates you don't deal in substance you deal in lies when you claim "I wouldn't call ~4.5% 'minuscule', and it's certainly not negligible from a practical point of view.

      "The fact is, all of man's co2 emissions amount to a feeble 00.0012% of greenhouse gases, or, to put it another way, 99.9988% are naturally occurring greenhouse gases."

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      5 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      "If we humans did nothing and live like we had in pre industrial age, would the next age arrive in 100,000 years?"

      Presumably.

      "If so what would be your solution? Raise the temperature on earth?"

      I already answered that last comment, I think.

      "It is like trying to change our environment and man made global warming? What is the difference between that and what we are doing now?"

      The difference is that what we're doing now is uncontrolled and takes no consideration for unintended consequences. The scenario you speculatively propose would be an intentional, controlled manipulation.

      "We are also changing the climate just on a different time scale."

      Yes. But in addition to our reckless disregard for the consequences, there's nothing 'just' about the difference in time scales. We're doing over the span of a couple of centuries what happens in natural glaciations and deglaciations over several millennia.

      The consequence of that is that we are currently allowing very little time for the biota to adapt. There is a big difference between 200 generations of, say, ground squirrels, and 10,000 generations. (Or, for that matter, 10 generations of humans and 500 generations.)

      The biological and ecological stresses are much, much more severe in the current case.

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      5 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Doc,

      The reason I ask is to stir thinking on your part...

      If we humans did nothing and live like we had in pre industrial age, would the next age arrive in 100,000 years?

      If so what would be your solution? Raise the temperature on earth?

      It is like trying to change our environment and man made global warming?

      What is the difference between that and what we are doing now?

      We are also changing the climate just on a different time scale.

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      5 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      Well, without going into unnecessary detail, the onsets of glaciations are more than sufficiently slow that we should be able to raise CO2 in a controlled manner if necessary.

      Although--on second look, you said "current levels". Current levels are probably high enough to prevent the next glacial cycle from taking place, if I recall correctly. ("Probably", because there have only been, I think, a couple of studies so far that look at this question, so it isn't 'settled.') The last time CO2 was as high as it is now was in the previous geological age, the Pliocene:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pliocene#Climate

      But if we follow the prescriptions of some folks and find a way to draw down atmospheric CO2 to 350 or so--there isn't yet a proven way to do this economically, though there are a couple of promising prospects--we could still raise levels again if we needed to stave off glaciation.

      But the question as posed is roughly as far in the future as the beginning of civilization is in the past. So, not at the very top of the priority list.

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      5 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Doc,

      Where do you see humans going in the next 10000 years?

      This is a serious question.

      Suppose we follow your advice and keep CO2 in current levels...

      What will happen when the next ice age comes?

      In other word natural climate change...

      What will we do then?

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      5 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      As the story said, it IS good news--in the short run.

      As to the long run, we won't have a whole lot of good news unless and until we see CO2e concentrations actually start to decrease.

      The main reason that is so is that we've been in an Ice Age for over 2 million years now, in which glacials alternate with interglacial periods such as the present.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quaternary_glaciatio...

      So most all of the biosphere is cold-adapted, with the present climate at the warm end of the norm over the Quaternary.

      Particularly notable in this regard are all our main staple crops. They were all developed during the very stable Holocene epoch of the last 10,000 years or so--and while that means that they aren't cold-adapted in quite the way I was talking about above, it is nevertheless true that they have very tight maximum thermal tolerances (with respect to current conditions, especially in the tropics).

      That means that there is not that much of the biota that's going to really like the conditions we're in the process of bringing about. And those that do--poison ivy is one example, and zika virus is another--we're not going to enjoy so much, unfortunately.

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      5 months ago from Yorktown NY

      I am shocked...increase in Glaciers in Greenland points to worse sea level rise down the road...

      When will we hear good news from the Global warming community?

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      5 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      The answer is in the story:

      "A natural cyclical cooling of North Atlantic waters likely caused the glacier to reverse course, said study lead author Ala Khazendar, a NASA glaciologist on the Oceans Melting Greenland (OMG) project. Khazendar and colleagues say this coincides with a flip of the North Atlantic Oscillation — a natural and temporary cooling and warming of parts of the ocean that is like a distant cousin to El Nino in the Pacific.

      The water in Disko Bay, where Jakobshavn hits the ocean, is about 3.6 degrees cooler (2 degrees Celsius) than a few years ago, study authors said.

      While this is “good news” on a temporary basis, this is bad news on the long term because it tells scientists that ocean temperature is a bigger player in glacier retreats and advances than previously thought, said NASA climate scientist Josh Willis, a study co-author. Over the decades the water has been and will be warming from man-made climate change, he said, noting that about 90 percent of the heat trapped by greenhouse gases goes into the oceans.

      “In the long run we’ll probably have to raise our predictions of sea level rise again,” Willis said."

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      5 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Doc, how can this be? I was shocked to read this...

      https://www.nbcnews.com/mach/science/key-greenland...

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      5 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      And still nothing substantial to say, I see.

      Oh, well.

    • profile image

      5 months ago

      “Doc”

      “at this point readers here can draw their own conclusions about which of us has something to contribute, based on the thread below.”

      That’s the only credible thing you’ve said about your responces to my proposed hypothetical. Too bad no one but you and Jack, who seems to enjoy watching you squirm, care to read y’alls ongoing discourse.

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      6 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      Tsad, I won't comment further until you have something substantial to say. I think at this point readers here can draw their own conclusions about which of us has something to contribute, based on the thread below.

      Jack, Susan Crockford has been a 'polar bear skeptic' for a long time; this is just more of the same. There is no good evidence that the bears are 'thriving', as far as I know. And as for that other article, it's pretty evidently cherry-picking. The clearest example is the section on the Pentagon report. It's very clear that the scenario they pick on was just that--an extreme but not utterly out of the question *scenario*--that is, a projection. It's even explained in a relatively lengthy quote from the author.

      Yet they claim that it was presented and intended as "fact". Either they know better, which would make their claim a deliberate falsehood, or they didn't, in which case they aren't competent to analyze this matter.

      I'd also point out that the article comes from 2014, which is undoubtedly why it fails to mention the record warmth of the years since then--rather embarrassing for the author(s), I should think, looking back from 2019.

    • tsadjatko profile image

      6 months ago from now on

      Snow, i already said you can’t find that info anywhere (the margin of error) and I explained why so why are you changing the subject again from the fact you refuse to agree with me that if it is even near the margin of error the carbon debate is a hoax.

      I never argued anything you have brought up which is all deflection. I gave you a hypothetical and you are afraid to admit if it were true the carbon debate is meaningless - you are the only one being evasive because you are brainwashed and cannot allow your ego to be besmearched even hypothetically. Very inscientific btw.

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      6 months ago from Yorktown NY

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      6 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Another myth from Al Gore’s documentary dispelled...

      https://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2019/03/pol...

      The polar bears are thriving....

      How do you explain that?

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      6 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      Correct, I think, though perhaps we haven't had 7 billion long enough to kniw whether it's sustainable or not. And I add that it's not only resources we need; we also must be able to effectively 'sink' the wastes we produce. That seems to me to be more of a limiting factor, since that's the side of the equation responsible for many of the worst pollution problems we observe today.

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      6 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Doc, I gave your comment a lot of thought and here is my response to your hypothesis. God gave humans free will so that we can make the decisions for ourselves. God also provided the resources...such as fossil fuel to power our increasingly complex world. He did instruct us to be fruitful and multiply... this would imply we would use the resources he provided... the question really comes down to what is an acceptible level of usage. Obviously, the world is not limitless. At some point, we would run out of resources to feed an increasing population. So far, we have been lucky and 7 billion is still sustainable. If we harness the sun or nuclear energy, we can extend that capacity but to what extent no one knows.

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      6 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      "Do we believe we have the power to change nature?"

      Depends what you mean. We can't change the laws of nature. But we can wreak havoc on our natural environment. We've done so in numerous ways already, quite apart from climate change. The absence of megafauna in North America, almost certainly due to human over-harvesting; the plastic gyres in our oceans... and many other instances, old and new. Too many to list.

      "If there was no God, then we are the only hope. But if there is a God, he can do miraculous things...who is to say, he would intervene and save us...?"

      There's a story about that. A minister, trapped on his roof by flood waters, refuses rescue by several humans pleading his reliance on God, and ultimately drowns. In Heaven, he asks God how this could happen, given his sincere prayers for succour.

      And God says, "My child, I sent you two boats and a helicopter--but you refused my grace merely because it was embodied in humans."

      Who's to say God won't tell us similarly, "I sent you thousands of climate scientists?"

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      6 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Yes, I agree.

      I would abolish the UN and start from scratch. It is beyond repair.

      I think membership in the new United Nations should be based on countries that have a democratic form of government.

      Dictatorships and Monarchy have no place in the UN.

      As the policeman of the world, the US should be given a prominent role.

      As for beliving in a Supreme Being, it is just natural for us humans. If the concept of God does not exist, it would have to be invented.

      I think we get in trouble when we think we are just like God...ala Tower of Babel...story. In many ways, the climate change debate comes down to this. Do we believe we have the power to change nature?

      If there was no God, then we are the only hope. But if there is a God, he can do miraculous things...who is to say, he would intervene and save us...?

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      6 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      I certainly agree with you about abuses committed by UN personnel--though to be fair, there are really no "UN personnel" properly speaking; peacekeepers are trained and paid by their national armed forces and 'loaned' to the UN.

      And that's the problem with Saddam defying the UN, too--though in fact, he had no WMDs, as we found out the hard way--and much too late. Yes, there were UN resolutions. But the UN has never been given the muscle to enforce those; the great powers have never been willing to cede the authority. "National Sovereignty", right?

      I expect you'd abolish the UN. If I had my druthers, I'd strengthen it, in order to address the sorts of issues you are talking about.

      And I agree with you about the Security Council structure. It's not equitable, and it does tend to inhibit many actions that could be helpful in the world. However, realpolitik makes it inevitable: essentially, the Security Council formalizes, or institutionalizes, the real power structure, at least as it existed in the post WW II world.

      As to my personal beliefs, the existence or otherwise of God is *way* above my pay grade. Yet I do believe that there is meaning, that there is right and wrong independent of philosphical or legal systems. And that isn't really based on evidence, but faith. Whether that lines up with what you might consider to be God, I don't know (but perhaps you'll tell me.)

      And yes, I know that there's no contradiction between theistic beliefs and science, even including evolution. I would tend to think that evolution is just Creation in progress.

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      6 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Doc,

      I disagree the UN has done a good job. If anything, it has been the problem in some conflicts...the Iraq war being a prime example. If the UN has done a better job of overseeing the weapons of mass destruction of Saddam, we may not have gone to war...

      The human rights abuses and sex crimes committed by UN personnel is another example of poor performance.

      The structure of the UN is the problem in my opinion. The 5 member security council prevents anything meaningful of being accomplished. Meanwhile, the rest of the UN body, ruled by mostly dictatorships countries which are in the majority and rule against the only democracy in the middleeast, that being Israel.

      You didn’t comment whether you belief in a higher power. Believing in evolution is not a contradiction. There are many reknown scientists who believe in God. I just happen to disagree with the way evolution are presented. The slow incremental mutation process does not work for me. The statistical odds are just too great.

      By the way, a good book on this topic is “the Science of God” by Gerald Schroeder.

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      6 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      Jack, sorry to have missed your comment amidst tsad's accusations. I'll go point by point.

      "That is all well and good...but you dodged my question. What is your personal belief when it comes to economics and politics?"

      I certainly didn't intend to 'dodge' anything; I answered your question as fully and honestly as I could.

      But in response to the question just asked, I believe in democracy when it comes to politics, and in a free market when it comes to economics. However, as I've discussed before, the free market is structured by the legal framework within which it exists, and for best results with respect to human welfare, that legal-economic framework must be structured to protect ecological and economic well-being.

      For instance, it must deal with 'externalities'--the classic being the 'tragedy of the commons,' which you can Google if you wish. And

      as economist Herman Daly pointed out, the free market is also powerless to determine the appropriate scale of the economy in relation to the environment--another question that must be dealt with 'for best results.'

      "I am a conservative and proud of it. My philosophy transcends into the rest of my life, into politics, economics and religion. I believe we are put on this planet for a purpose. I do not buy into the evolution theory of man evolved from primitive animals."

      Well, I'd disagree there; I think that there is very powerful evidence for evolution both ongoing today, and as a formative process in the past. I do have a bit of an issue with the 'from primitive animals' part, as our relatively recent pre-human forbears weren't 'primitive' by any means, but rather the latest efflorescence of a larger process that had been ongoing for more than a billion years.

      "We are unique as a species and we are given the task of being good steward of the earth and control over all the resources including the energy resources and animals..."

      I think that anyone who reads Scripture would be unable to disagree.

      "This basic believe system is based on my reading of the Bible. I don’t like to mix religion with science, being an engineer and a scientist..."

      Not sure what that really means, sorry.

      "However, there is overlap of the two realms, the physical and the spiritual. Climate change has developed into almost a religion with some. It is more based on faith than science."

      No, it isn't, though I understand that some feel that way. My 'belief'--I don't really like the word in this context--in anthropogenic climate change is entirely founded on evidence. Of course, I don't claim to understand everything relevant to the topic; I'm not claiming omniscience here. But insofar as I can follow the science, that understanding of evidence is the whole and entire basis of my support. If the evidence changes, my mind changes, too.

      "The economic consequences and linkage cannot be understated."

      Do you mean that they can't be *over*-stated? That would be my opinion, too, if so.

      "The fact that he UN and the IPCC is involved also should give us pause. What has the UN done in the 70 years of its existence?"

      It's done a lot. My favorite example is the elimination of smallpox, achieved by the WHO. That's an enormous boon to humanity. I hope that they'll be able to finish off polio, too, and I wish them success in their efforts to control ebola. (Also, while we're at it, guinea worm, a horrifying parasitical disease--but that effort isn't UN, or not much so.)

      It has also been, and continues to be, the primary institution caring for refugees around the world (via the UNHCR). That function has saved or transformed for the better probably millions of lives.

      The UN is also responsible for negotiating the end of numerous armed conflicts (and sometimes even avoiding them altogether.)

      Is it perfect? Of course not. It's human, and it's highly political (as any organization trying to mediate international conflict is going to be.) It has failed sometimes, and will of course fail again. But being human is to fail, and IMO the jobs the UN undertakes would necessitate a replacement organization, should it ever be abandoned.

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      6 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      More insults. Really, it doesn't add to your credibility.

      And yes, my answer remains a responsive answer, no matter how many times you assert the opposite.

      Speaking of 'objective,' since you brought it up, do you have any 'objective' support for the claim that the amount of "man made carbon" is less than the margin of error? That's a question I asked that you yourself still have yet to answer.

    • tsadjatko profile image

      6 months ago from now on

      Like I said, if that’s what you’d say in answer to my question then that’s nothing but a deflection from answering the question and nothing you say can change that to an objective person. Yes it is what you say but what you say is no answer to the question and just demonstrates what I already explained, you are too brainwashed to even consider what it would mean if the amount of man made carbon is less than the margins of error involved with all these statistics.

      If you actually were a “doctor” of anything I’d claim malpractice! Your discouse is as phony as your “title” “doc” snow!

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      6 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      Ah, tsad, so you consider my answer not to be an answer because it's not the answer you deem 'correct.'

      Got it.

      However, you asked me "what would I say if..." And I typed out what I would say 'if'. You want to think about that, 'tsad'?

    • tsadjatko profile image

      6 months ago from now on

      Jack, so “doc” continues to avoid answering the question now trying to focus the discussion on “insults”? “ In my opinion” they aren’t insults, i’m calling a spade a spade.

      I asked a hypothetical and demonstrated “doc” totally avoided answering (which I knew he would) because the only answer possible to my question is “then the whole argument about manmade co2 has to be baseless therefore man made global warming is a hoax!”

      He is so brainwashed he can’t even think of that possibility! Let alone express it in answering a hypothetical question which he didn’t answer in any way despite his “opinion” that he did which in itself his “opinion” of his answer is totally unscientific and frankly a lie in the eyes of anyone objective.

      You can search until your brain explodes no one gives the margin of error for carbon statistics. Why is that? since even doc admits

      “I'm sure it's out there; scientists always pay close attention to the question of all sorts of potential errors in measurement.”~ “doc” snow

      But even he can’t find it?

      Why is that? Could it be because the media and scientists know that information would destroy their hoax? Likely “dic” doesn’t want to find it!

      Anyway whether it is to be found is meaningless in respect to my question because I said what if. Surely “doc” knows what a hypothetical is.

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      6 months ago from Yorktown NY

      T, the recent green new deal embraced by many Democrats and also the shift left to socialism is an indicator that this climate change initiative is not based exclusively on science. It is a political and economic push to cut down capitalism. In the pursuit of equality and fairness, some are willing to give up their liberty and freedom, a very dangerous move.

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      6 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      tsad, in my opinion I offered a full response to your question. If you have a further concern on this topic, I'd be glad to answer that, too. But my 4.5% figure is not 'false,' and you've offered no support for it.

      I'd also suggest that any discussion we have would go better if you avoid gratuitous insults.

    • tsadjatko profile image

      6 months ago from now on

      Jack, don’t you find it odd that “doc” snow never answered my question

      What would you say about man made carbon dioxide causing global warming if I told you that the amount of man made carbon dioxide put into the atmosphere (which scientist admit is minscule) is less than the margin of error in aprroximating the amount of CO2 present in the atmosphere?

      but instead changed the subject of my question giving fraudulent stats on carbon that he gets from the same scientists who are promgating the hoax of global warming?

      His 4.5% figure is false, thereis no question that fossil fuel carbon emissions are very small but small or miniscule is a samantics problem and has nothing to do with my question. This is how deceptive global warming crackpots are in discussions. They never venture wheretheycan be embarrassed if they can avoid it.

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      6 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Doc,

      That is all well and good...but you dodged my question. What is your personal belief when it comes to economics and politics?

      I am a conservative and proud of it. My philosophy transcends into the rest of my life, into politics, economics and religion. I believe we are put on this planet for a purpose. I do not buy into the evolution theory of man evolved from primitive animals. We are unique as a species and we are given the task of being good steward of the earth and control over all the resources including the energy resources and animals...

      This basic believe system is based on my reading of the Bible. I don’t like to mix religion with science, being an engineer and a scientist...

      However, there is overlap of the two realms, the physical and the spiritual. Climate change has developed into almost a religion with some. It is more based on faith than science.

      The economic consequences and linkage cannot be understated. The fact that he UN and the IPCC is involved also should give us pause. What has the UN done in the 70 years of its existence?

    • Doc Snow profile image

      Doc Snow 

      6 months ago from Camden, South Carolina

      My opinion is that no true climate activist is doing that. Rather, people concerned about climate feel--as, if I understand what you've said in the past, do you--that addressing climate change has important economic consequences due to the central importance of fossil fuels in the status quo.

      Opinions differ a lot on what that means in terms of capitalism. Some do feel that capitalism itself is an inextricable part of the problem and needs to be changed. Proposed alternatives include various flavors of socialism, 'community-oriented economics' which are essentially free market systems but with tight controls on scale, and 'simple living models' of various sorts, including some folks who want to abolish money altogether.

      A great many climate activists just want to reform the energy economy without such deep systemic changes, which they presumably do not see as necessary--for example, the Citizen's Climate Lobby, which is working in a bipartisan manner to institute a revenue-neutral carbon tax (a pretty modest reform, and one quite friendly to Republican principles, by design--its whole premise is a free market.)

      *All of which said, there may be some foes of capitalism out there who have latched onto climate change as a justification for their pre-existing beliefs. But you can't blame real climate activists for that, nor conflate the two groups.

      I'm quite certain that the article particularly misrepresents Ms. Figueres, who has spent large chunks of her career working to build the economies of Latin American countries (especially her native Costa Rica) by organizing and managing public-private partnerships and investment:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christiana_Figueres#...

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