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Another View to Think About Climate Change

Updated on February 23, 2018
jackclee lm profile image

Jack is currently a volunteer at the Westchester County Archives. Jack has worked at IBM for over 28 years.

Introduction

The climate change debate, even if some in the media and politics think it is settled, is not conducted in a productive manner. Currently, the proponent of climate change mitigation is focused on our use of fossil fuel and CO2 emissions. The skeptics like me were focused on real data and the lack of accuracy of these various climate models in their projections. It seems to me a different approach based on science may be a better way to move both sides forward. Let me propose it here.

- Feb. 2018

Background

Assume I, as a skeptic, will allow myself to believe in the claims of climate change scientists that we, humans are the largest contributor to climate change.

And let me also assume that the climate scientists are genuinely interested in solving this problem that they foresee in our horizon to be devestating to mankind.

How do we proceed to solve this crisis...or is it a crisis?

Here is my proposal. Assume the basic science behind climate change is sound, the greenhouse effect, what if we examine the reality of theses effects that are being predicted as a result.

1. How likely are oceans to rise 20 feet and in what time frame?

2. How likely are super storms and extreme hurricanes materialize as a result of climate change or glogal warming? With increasing frequency?

3. How likely are areas of the globe that will experience extreme heat that are life threatening?

These are “what if” questions that scientists should be able to address or at least attempt to answer with a certain amount of confidence.

After all, anything that we project has to work within the confines of what is possible physically. What I mean about that is due to the immense size of the earth, some things are just physically impossible.

Let me use a simple example to illustrate this basic concept.

If we pile snow 10 feet high in a parking lot. How long do you think it will take to melt it?

Suppose we know an increase in the average temperature of the earth will lead to ocean to rise due to the melting of glaciers...

How fast and how high the rise is a number we should be able to compute. Assume the worst case scenerio and a rise of 2 degrees C over the next 30 years. Given that assumption, let us compute how long it would take to melt the glaciers around the globe that will result in a 20 foot rise in our oceans. The amount of heat or energy to do this should be easily calculated. Also, the time it would take to accomplish it. How many years will it take to rise the ocean one foot?

Who are these scientists that can do the calculations? Shouldn’t they be the first to come up with the answers that are so important for us the people and for our public officials who has to come up with policies to deal with these changes?

Some Possibilites...

Let me state that I am not a scientist. I don’t have the skills or the expertise to do the calculations. But, let me hypothesized for a moment. Suppose the answer is a decade. If it takes 10 years for the glaciers to melt and increase our ocean even by 10 feet, then this is very bad news. We as a society are in deep trouble. We cannot fix this fast enough...

Suppose the answer is 100 years. Then we do have some leverage. We can plan to mitigate any harmful effects of the rising oceans. We can move cities to higher grounds for example. We can find ways to reduce the greenhouse gases or counter its effects. We have time to solve this problem that is slow in the making.

Suppose the answer is 1000 years. Well, then I would conclude there is nothing to worry about. The time frame is so large that none of us will be around including our children and grand children. The effects are so far away, there are just too many other factors to consider. We may destroy our civilization by a nuclear war. We could be struck by an asteriod similiar to the one that killed off the dinosaurs 65 million years ago. Or we could invent some new technology to sequester Carbon dioxide. Or we could relocate our civilization to outer space or another planet. The possibilities are just endless.

What to Do Going Forward...

My suggestion for those who are engaged in this issue is to ask questions. You will be surprised by the answers. Next time when you hear a talk by climate scientists, ask point blank just how long does the effect will materialize, based on our current understanding? In many cases, the answer is they just don’t know. How come?

If I was engaged in a life long study on climate change, I would want to know how much time are we talking about. Is it imminent, or do we have time to mitigate?


Summary

In conclusion, I just want to change the debate on climate change. Instead of arguing whether if it exist or not, or whether if it is natural on manmade, why not assume the worst and calculate the effects. If the time frame is short, we better act with urgency. If it is long then it may not be too bad...as projected.

Isn’t this the more responsible and common sense approach to deal with this potential disaster?

A Simple Poll

How long do you think it will take Greenland to melt?

See results

© 2018 Jack Lee

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    • tsadjatko profile image

      TSAD 

      4 months ago from https:// www.consumeraffairs.com/ online/ hubpages. html

      Exactly what I am saying Jack. You can't tell me any member of the today's scientific community (as it has become like a cult ready to excommunicate any scientist who goes against the agenda) dare to seriously argue against the "concensus" crowd of scientists when they are a member of that community and depend upon it for their salaries, their very survival. They all need the collaboration of their peers to promote funding of their pet projects so how can you expect the honest ones, if you can call them honest, to go against the crowd. Look what happens to those who have tried! They are labeled "climate change deniers" as if they were some sort of racists.

      Btw good points Brad...you do see the forest for the trees.

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      4 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Tsad, I have some personal experience in this area. Over the past few years, I have been attending lectures at the Lamont Dogherty Earth Observatory in Palisades NY. Over these years, there were numerous scientists who presented talks about there particular field such as volcanos, earthquakes, forests, glaciers... and I could tell they all buy into the idea of Man caused climate change...yet they can’t answer some basics about the issue. They are just part of the machine that accept this theory and then try to get funding for their pet project and somehow relating them to climate change...just to get the funding. They are clueless as to the underlining causes.

    • bradmasterOCcal profile image

      bradmasterOCcal 

      4 months ago from Orange County California

      Jack

      The real issue is if there is a real climate change, why would we be able to reverse it?

      We have after hundreds of years, and super computers have failed to accurately predict weather. That is because the weather works not by else but the rules of nature. These rules existed before we were a life form, and it will exist after we are gone.

      There is also the change in polarity in the north and the south pole that happens periodically.

      What are the chances they we have a clue as to what is changing the weather, and even less of a clue how to reverse.

      Chances are no matter what we do, it will be wrong?

      Remember how many pyramids of foods were supposed to be healthy? It keeps changing, and so do the foods that are produced.

      Are best scientists, and minds have failed to find cures for any major diseases since the 1950s.

      In California, we have failed to keep water resources to meet the demand of a population that has doubled.

      These are simple things to fix as opposed to the complexity of the global climate.

      BTW, methane is one of the new issues that seem to adversely affect climate change.

    • tsadjatko profile image

      TSAD 

      4 months ago from https:// www.consumeraffairs.com/ online/ hubpages. html

      I believe what you say is not true or if it is true the few that are as you say do not claim the evidence (which begs the question is their evidence false data too, do they even know what the real data is?) demonstrates without a doubt global warming is man made and that mankind can stop or fix it! Actually if there are any "just focused on their narrow field of study" they are the ones who do see the forest (which is there is no proof climate change is manmade) from the trees (which is the left wing, democrat and media propaganda with an agenda which in reality has nothing to do with changing the direction of the climate).

    • jackclee lm profile imageAUTHOR

      Jack Lee 

      4 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Tsad, I knew what you are saying but not all climate scientists are political. Some are just focused on their narrow field of study and not seeing the forest from the trees.

    • tsadjatko profile image

      TSAD 

      4 months ago from https:// www.consumeraffairs.com/ online/ hubpages. html

      "And let me also assume that the climate scientists are genuinely interested in solving this problem that they foresee in our horizon to be devastating to mankind." ???

      You can't accept that without lying to yourself! Lying to yourself is not a scientific approach now is it - unless you are a climate scientist it appears.

      NOAA’s climate gatekeepers are political activists not honest scientists and the U.S. taxpayer has no business funding their propaganda.

      The latest: http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2018/02/20...

      And there is no such thing as a "scientific concensus"

      Once the consensus of scientists was that the appendix was a vestigial organ of no functional use - eventually proven wrong by science just like every other so called "consensus" of scientists throughout history.

      There is only data and/or experimentation which can be repeated which leads to conclusions and when the data is fudged or incomplete there can be no valid conclusions or science...at all...P.E.R.I.O.D .

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