Top Post: Disproving Climate Change

My most popular post is “How To Disprove Global Warming”, which earned its distinction dishonestly, I’m afraid. I can’t prove it, but I have strong suspicions that most of its continuing popularity, week after week, comes from climate change deniers who have stumbled upon it, hoping to find support for their unsupportable belief. It’s amusing that the rating for the post is 2-1/2 stars, which can only mean that half rated it “excellent” and the other half rated it “very poor”. Deniers would rate it “very poor” because it goes against their faith.

I’m very sorry to disappoint them. Their conspiracy theories are ridiculous, and every bit of the evidence is against them. NASA scientist James Hansen said it best. “There are lots of opinions about climate change, but only one set of facts.”

“There are lots of opinions about climate change,
but only one set of facts.”
James Hansen

I have said many times that it really doesn’t matter what scientific ignoramuses and ideological slave politicians think. Climate change is happening before our eyes, and will go on happening regardless of their articles of faith. They claim there is controversy, but the fact is that in a count of tens of thousands of peer-reviewed scientific articles, only about half of one percent suggested climate change was not occurring, and those are old articles. Conservatives claim there’s a worldwide conspiracy, but they can’t explain why all the climate scientists all over the world would suddenly decide to go over to the dark side. Several Republicans continue to characterize climate change as the grandest hoax ever foisted upon the gullible world.

This is idiocy. The only questions are when climate change will become too obvious to ignore, and how bad it will be. This is where genuine scientific disagreements can occur, but every week we get more bad news and almost no good news. The only bright spot in the otherwise disturbing landscape of new research is a finding that the rapid warming may be leveling off somewhat. Good, but climate change hasn’t stopped, nor will it, because it is caused by our abuse, which is actually worsening.

It really doesn’t matter what
ignoramuses and politicians think.
Climate change is happening before our eyes.

Carbon dioxide is the primary greenhouse gas, produced by the normal operation of cars, deforestation, and other processes. For decades, we have been aware that the best scientific evidence we have is that 350 parts per million of carbon dioxide is about the maximum the planet can take without radical consequences. The last update of the subject told us we had crossed the 400 ppm marker for carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. The public shrugged. The politicians paid no attention. The industrialists and all the rest of us continued to pump millions more tons of carbon dioxide into the air.

The last time there was a reading higher than 400 ppm of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere was some 45-million years ago. The ocean then was 65 feet deeper than it is now.

Perhaps the doubters look at the present sea level and conclude that, since the rise is not obvious so far, let alone dramatic, warming can’t be real. If movement is very slow, we can’t see it with our eyes; we can only see it after time has passed, or if we measure it scientifically. As Stephen Jay Gould said, tadpoles are immortal in the eyes of a mayfly, whose entire life passes in one day.

The last time the earth had 400 ppm of
carbon dioxide the sea was 65 feet deeper.

Some, including quite a few fools in Congress, have pointed to record levels of snowfall and concluded we can’t be warming if there’s all this snow. These people are willfully ignorant. That’s exactly what science predicts, along with more violent hurricanes and tornadoes, worse flooding and drier droughts, and all the other things that get worse every year.

Now, we have seen maps that show us the coastal areas that will be under water if the sea rise is ten or twenty feet, which is not imminent, but inevitable. The effects will be radical, requiring the relocation of hundreds of millions of people into areas that are already overcrowded. Major cities will be permanently under water. Agricultural land will be lost. It’s already being lost. But if we had a sea level rise of anything even close to 65 feet at some far future date, it would be a catastrophe unlike anything since long before homo sapiens became a separate species. The population would be greatly reduced. Billions would die. Fortunately for me, I will probably be long dead by that time. But my grandchildren and yours may not.

It’s worth remembering that it won’t be the end of the world. The planet will go on. But it’s possible it will go on without people. No problem. Evolution will continue as it always has (regardless of whether people “believe” in it), only there might be no people.

Solving climate change is no longer possible.
We can only try to live with the consequences.

In the United States the entire subject is crippled by political-religious ideology, by a conservative, anti-intellectual failure to understand the reality of science, of how the universe actually works. By an inability to get beyond conservative belief in magic that is simply wrong, that is not even possible in the real world. Believers simply don’t accept that their faith is failing them, and is leading us into deep and turbulent waters that will drown us.

Solving the problem of climate change is no longer possible, because even if the generation of greenhouse gasses were to stop completely in an instant, they would continue to build up in the atmosphere for decades. The United States, as the nation that contributes the most to atmospheric greenhouse gasses, has failed to even begin rational discussion. The tiny steps we have taken—recycling our cans and bottles, driving a hybrid—are all but meaningless. The world will probably never address the problem.

There’s a term that describes a species that has lost the ability to adapt because environmental conditions have changed too much: extinction.

 

Here’s a nice little PS for you. It’s an especially telling graphic presentation of what is happening to Arctic sea ice since 1979, by Andy Lee Robinson. Note especially the black trace for September, the month of least sea ice. Looks a bit too much like the vortex going down the drain, doesn’t it?

arctic-death-spiral-1979-201303

 

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8 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. “The tiny steps we have taken—recycling our cans and bottles, driving a hybrid—are all but meaningless. ”

    Well thank God for that. Glad that’s over.

    So can I go back to driving my beautiful SUV again now? Or are they still considered the evil horseless carriage of the right.

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    • Here’s my thought. We need to take radical steps as a society to save ourselves. We’re not doing that. Our stupidity may well create worldwide catastrophe, but to the best of my ability I will not participate. In the overall scheme of things, it makes no difference what car you drive, but do you really want to be part of the problem?

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      • You assume there is a problem. Have you checked the arctic ice shelf recently. Seems the trend is reversing???? How can that be??? Did you hear… high and low altitude temperatures haven’t risen in the last 15 years but CO2 concentration has continued to increase???? Wait, what??? It can’t be true that the Antarctic is seeing temperature averages higher than any other time in recent history??? What, no, all the models are still failing to predict accurately temperatures just 5 to 10 years into the future but we should trust their long term predictions??? I am so confused. Good thing there isn’t any evidence to CONTRADICT that theory of global warming you are clinging to. We can’t even predict what is going to happen one year to the next (look no further than this years atlantic hurricane predictions). Keep up with the fearmongering. Have you even taken the time to view the Global temperature trends for the last 400k years based on core samples. The current trend correlates very nicely to those of past warmings and coolings. The whole arrogant notion that it can all be reduced to one main simple contributing factor, CO2, is amusing. Just tell me one simple thing, if you know for sure that the current warming trend is due to man, what percentage of the warming effect is due to man??? What! you can’t tell me that? Not even a rough approximation? But you know we are causing it? But you don’t know how much? Now that is what I call SCIENCE.

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      • Global climate change cannot be discerned by looking at a few things that support one’s beliefs. It is vastly complex. Certain things wax and wane, such as ice covering in a specific location. Neither I nor any of the thousands of scientists who have devoted their lives to climate study are “clinging” to somebody’s hypothesis. If studies supported what you claim, that’s what would be reported. Anything else is not science. Alas, the many thousands of studies over decades do not support your claim.

        Climate change is what has been demonstrated again and again by increasingly complex analysis of hundreds of millions of data points over a century or so of measurement. Nobody ever claimed that CO2 was the sole cause. Scientists have been very careful to point out that no single event can be attributed to climate change, since all such events also occur naturally. What we CAN measure is the levels of greenhouse gasses and their change, and such things as the temperature of the land and water, and the movement of the oceans and their acidity.

        Is climate change manmade? This is less easily demonstrated than change itself, because the global changes so far are obvious only from careful measurement, and the climate does change naturally over long periods. That’s the reason that so many scientists, say, two decades ago, declined to support the idea. But the science has improved in many ways since then, and all the new measurements show a worsening trend. Only a few scientists at present question whether we are the cause.

        In short, you do not argue from a scientific viewpoint. What you say is what you believe, but belief means nothing in the face of actual evidence. You and all people who deny the reality of climate change should immerse yourself in the science of climate. There are plenty of readily available good books for us laypersons on the subject. Check a few of them out, so you’ll have better information.

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  2. Of course climate change occurs. It has since the dawn of the earth itself. It is amusing that I am always labelled a global climate change denier everytime I have this discussion. The discussion is as to whether man has been contributing to it at a level that would have any significant effect above the normal “wax and wane”. Everything I stated is verifiable. It is funny, I even pointed out data that exist showing global climate trends over the last 400k years and yet you still felt empowered to label me a “climate change denier.”

    I chose those specific examples as you use those as points of support for the theory that the current warming trend is anthropogenic in an earlier post of yours. If one cannot identify the amount that is naturally occurring and that which is anthropogenic, how can one determine what action if any at all, is necessary and if some impending future disaster will or will not occur? I have read and reviewed much information on this topic. I state again. I never said climate change did not occur. I argue the theory that man is causing the current global warming trend and that if nothing drastic is done in the near future to reduce “greenhouse gases” the world will reach a critical point it will not be able to recover from.

    I have seen much data regarding greenhouse gases and attempts to correlate them to the current warming trend. Some of these even show warming trends leading the increased levels of greenhouse gases. I NEVER stated CO2 was the sole contributer. You stated that in your response. What I stated is that the argument is that the main (primary, not the only) anthropogenic contribution to climate change is CO2.

    If there is no or a minute anthropogenic component to the current warming trend than isn’t all this nothing more than what has been referred to in the past as the WEATHER? I just would like to say again that it is always amusing when one challenges the notion that the current warming trend is man-made, they are labelled climate change deniers when every last one of us (well almost all) would whole heartedly agree with you that natural climate change is occurring and has always occurred. Besides, where do you draw the line and determine….this is naturally occurring and this is not? What do you compare it against to make that determination that is not in part based on speculation and extrapolation?

    You also make bold assumptions as to my background, experience, and knowledge base.

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    • My goodness, Gus. Between all the excited statements and question marks (????) it’s hard to determine just what it is you are saying. If everyone calls you a climate change denier, maybe you should tighten your communications a bit.

      I don’t agree that it is necessary to determine the exact degree of manmade change. Just the measurement of the change itself is extremely difficult. Everyone knows there have been climate swings for hundreds of thousands of years, but the current changes are unique because we have pumped so much junk into the environment.

      One can speculate about natural vs. anthropomorphic change, but in the end we are stuck with steadily worsening numbers, and steadily worsening pollution that is probably driving them.

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      • My original post style was to be taken as satire in response to your ridiculous ranting, raving, fear mongering, misrepresentations, and outright slandering in your above blog post. BTW, your last two paragraphs in your most recent response above make the exact same point that I was making in my posts. So, I do thank-you for that.

        It appears that, after all, I am not the one being lead around by my feelings and gut after all. You make a correlation in your 2nd to last paragraph that is just not able to be supported with current data (that the current changes are UNIQUE because of the junk we have pumped into the environment – though this is not in the least bit true when current trends are compared to long-term global historical trends, changes, and deviations or when compared to greenhouse gas trends).

        If you were arguing that sulfurs and other acid forming air-borne toxins were creating acid rain and the like I would agree with you 100% as evidence supports this conclusion and the damage it is causing. If you were arguing that heavy metal pollutants were ruining good fertile soil and land, I would agree with you 100%. If you were arguing that toxic run-off from landfills and dumping zones, especially in other non-US industrialized nations were polluting the world’s water shed and oceans, I would agree with you 100%. We are definitely doing much harm to the planet; that is without a doubt.

        But, the conclusions you’re pushing related to life ending catastrophic anthropogenic global warming is truly based on speculation and various computer models that have yet to make an accurate prediction of future global trends and, even worse, turns attention away from more immediate and dire environmental catastrophes and threats. I think the last paragraph in your response makes that point on its own.

        You do understand that not being able to give even an approximate percentage of contribution due to anthropogenic effects means that scientists still don’t understand or know what is happening with any degree of confidence or they would be out there making those claims and attaching their name and reputation to it.

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  3. You go Gus!!

    Like


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