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    Doctor of Scentology DrSmellThis's Avatar
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    http://www.cnn.com/2005/TECH/science/0

    9/23/hurricane.cycle/index.html


    According to this article, it appears there is currently insufficient

    evidence within hurricane studies to pin the jump in number and intensity of hurricanes on global warming. That does

    not mean global warming is not a factor in their number and intensity.

    We have several problems in trying to

    determine what is happening. First, natural cycles are large and chaotic, and there may always be some natural cycle

    functioning that could be a greater effect than any human effect. That tends to mask the human effect from being

    detected accurately by the "instruments" of science.

    Does that mean there is no human effect? No! What that means

    is that research "instruments" cannot currently detect the human effect on hurricanes (for example) amidst the

    "noise" of natural fluctuations, with sufficient accuracy and precision to satisfy all the "hard science types".

    Chaos theory and statistical models/methods are not yet advanced enough to subtract out the natural cycles; and/or

    periods of study are not yet long enough, for this kind of strong data to be available. We might be able to do much

    better than we currently are doing, however, with more state of the art models/methods.

    Theoretically, another

    way to factor out natural cycles in a particular phenomenon, (besides studying a particular phenomenon like

    hurricanes) is to study different phenomena, and somehow detect trends across phenomena; trends which couldn't

    therefore be traced to cycles within a particular phenomenon.

    I do think this approach is important,

    since this really is one of the reasons many believe in human caused climate change -- too many things are

    happening, in little ways, everywhere you look. In order for science to keep pace with common sense, scientists need

    to develop good models and measures of general climate change. Some of that can be made possible through

    sophisticated statistical/mathematical/computer methods that factor out "noise" to make subtle effects more

    detectable.

    Since research methods can't currently address these questions, or convert everything to "apples and

    apples", we are left with the opinions of those who experts in the environment and climate, as well as the opinions

    of everyday people that are "sensitive to their surroundings".

    On the other hand, greenhouse gas induced global

    warming as an individual phenomenon is something researchers might eventually demonstrate. You can almost do that in

    a laboratory. That is another angle. The greenhouse effect per se seems to be a solid theory, other things

    being held equal.

    But it is apparent that the original "hockey stick" studies -- attempts to trace global warming

    to industrialization by looking at historical timelines -- need to be redone in a much more sophisticated manner.

    We'll probably never get to reanalyze the original data, since the original scientists aren't cooperating with

    those who want to do that. So we have to start over with that particular angle. I hope someone is doing this as we

    speak. If it could be done before, it should be able to be done better now.

    For myself, I currently believe

    global warming is happening, and that humans are changing some things about their climate/environment for the worse.



    I also suspect we are affecting global warming, and not in a positive direction. I cannot prove it, obviously.

    But I am not sure how realistic it would be to demand proof, or overwhelmingly conclusive, unambiguous evidence;

    where no alternate explanations would be possible; at the current time. Science never proves anything anyway. We can

    demand the best possible research be conducted immediately, and be careful how we tread on the earth. I am allowing

    myself to be influenced by expert opinions around the world in the mean time.
    Last edited by DrSmellThis; 09-23-2005 at 11:55 AM.
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    Moderator belgareth's Avatar
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    To preface my comments I will

    agree that warming is probably taking place. However, there is no substantiated scientific evidence at this time

    that global warming is the result of human activities. That does not mean human activities do not contribute but it

    has not been demonstrated to date. There is, on the other hand, good solid data demonstrating that global

    temperatures have varied with fluctuations in solar output, not perfectly but far to closelly to be pure

    coincidence.

    Quote Originally Posted by DrSmellThis
    According to this article, it appears there is currently insufficient evidence

    within hurricane studies to pin the jump in number and intensity of hurricanes on global warming. That does not mean

    global warming is not a factor in their number and intensity.
    That is not at all what they are

    saying.
    Quote Originally Posted by CNN Article
    But don't rush to blame it on global warming, experts warn.

    Max Mayfield,

    director of the National Hurricane Center in Miami, told a Senate subcommittee on Tuesday that we're in a period

    of heightened hurricane activity that could last another decade or two
    .(

    [color=#800

    080]See scientists collect data -- 1:33[/color]
    )

    "The increased activity since 1995 is due to natural

    fluctuations (and) cycles of hurricane activity driven by the Atlantic Ocean itself along with the atmosphere above

    it and not enhanced substantially by global warming," he testified
    .

    Mayfield's colleague at the National

    Hurricane Center, meteorologist Chris Landsea, said two recent studies about global warming and hurricanes raise

    more questions than they answer. He added that the impact of global warming is "minimal for the forseeable

    future.
    "

    Landsea said the studies indicate global warming could increase hurricane wind speeds and

    rainfall by about 5 percent --100 years from now
    . But, he added, more study is needed, looking back at

    historical data and making it more compatible with modern reporting techniques.
    As you can see, the

    people who study hurricanes don't see global warming as the cause or as a major contributor to storm strength in

    the forseeable future.
    Quote Originally Posted by CNN Article
    Brenda Ekwurzel, climate scientist of the Union of Concerned

    Scientist National Climate Education Program
    , told CNN that while global warming might not be causing

    hurricanes, it already is making them more intense.

    "We would never point to a single weather event and

    blame global warming," she said. "While hurricanes have bedeviled the Gulf Coast region for years, global warming

    is making matters worse
    ."

    Ekwurzel points to recent studies indicating that carbon dioxide is raising ocean

    temperatures.

    "And those warmer oceans are converting low-grade storms into powerful hurricanes," she said. "In

    short, the warm oceans are like fuel to a hurricane. It's like throwing gasoline on a

    fire
    ."
    While those who are already sounding the alarm about global warming are quick to attribute

    hurricane strength to global warming.
    Quote Originally Posted by CNN Article
    But not all hurricane experts are willing to make the

    link between global warming and hurricanes. At least not yet.
    They say the string of major storms that have

    struck the southeastern United States over the past two seasons signal a return to normal
    .
    Despite

    the hurricane scientists' belief that hurricane intensity is no more than a return to normal.
    Quote Originally Posted by CNN

    Article
    "From 1970 to 1995, there weren't that many hurricanes, and the ones we had were nice, well-mannered,

    housebroken hurricanes
    that stayed out to sea and didn't make a mess," said Hugh Willoughby, a hurricane

    researcher at Florida International University in Miami.

    "The only thing I can say," he added, "is this run

    of good luck we had is ending
    ."

    "This year you can just say nature is averaging out its climatology,"

    said Colorado State University's famed hurricane predictor, William Gray
    .

    (See video of

    the science of the storm --3:55
    )

    Katrina and Rita are what Gray calls "Bahama busters," storms that

    form off the Bahamas rather than near the coast of Africa. They explode after feeding on the warm waters of the Gulf

    of Mexico.

    The past century saw 18 "Bahama busters," Gray said.

    Even Katrina's and Rita's back-to-back

    pounding of the Gulf Coast has a precedent. In 1915, Gray said, New Orleans and Houston areas were hit by Category 4

    storms six weeks apart
    .

    "You can't blame that on global warming," he observed.

    Gray first sounded

    the alarm in 1995, noting that the surface waters in the north Atlantic Ocean had warmed slightly. 1995 saw 11

    hurricanes and eight tropical storms, the highest tally since 1933.

    By 1997, Gray's annual forecasts warned of

    "a new era" of hurricanes.

    He put forth the theory that many climatologists, including Mayfield and Willoughby,

    now embrace -- that hurricanes are driven by cycles of rising water temperature and salinity that affect the

    speed of currents in the Atlantic
    .
    The technical name for the engine driving the hurricane cycles is the

    Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation
    , or AMO for short. It can cause droughts in the West and hatch hurricanes in

    the East.

    "This cycle has been repeating back to the Ice Age," Willoughby said. "It's related to changes

    in the ocean currents that move heat northward. If it's fast, we get a lot of hurricanes."

    Studies show the AMO

    was cool -- and the currents slower -- from 1900 to 1925, warm from 1926 to 1969, cool from 1970 to 1994 and warm

    since 1995.

    And so, to a generation of Americans with little experience with hurricanes, it seems like these

    monsters are coming out of nowhere.

    Gray and Willoughby are among the skeptics who doubt global warming can be

    blamed for the trend of the past few years. They are joined by the hurricane trackers at the National Hurricane

    Center.


    "We're just entering a busy time here," said Chris Lauer, a meteorologist at the

    center
    .

    "You see a few decades of slower activity, followed by a few decades of higher oscillation," he said.

    "Our position is the recent increase in hurricane activity is not caused by global warming."

    Researchers at

    the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta, Georgia, suggested earlier this month that more than nature and

    coincidence might be driving the storms


    In the September's issue of the journal Science, Peter Webster and

    Judith Curry documented a 60 percent global jump in major hurricanes with winds of 131 mph or more and a 1-degree

    increase in the tropical ocean surface temperature
    .

    But Webster warned on Georgia Tech's Web site that

    more study was needed before blaming global warming
    .

    "We need a longer data record of hurricane statistics,"

    he said, "and we need to understand more about the role hurricanes play in regulating the heat balance and

    circulation in the atmosphere and oceans."

    Willoughby said he is keeping an open mind about the role of

    global warming but believes it won't be a factor for at least another 100 years
    .

    "The answer I give

    everybody, because it has all been so politicized, is I don't know," he said.

    Gray was more direct.

    "There are all these medicine men out there who want to capitalize on general ignorance on this subject," he

    said.

    "With all the problems in the world, we shouldn't be dealing with this."

    Willoughby believes

    the debate over hurricanes and global warming is healthy. "It's good for the science," he said.
    While I

    included a lot of stuff the really important part is the information that this is a cycle that has been going on

    since the last Ice Age. I don't think any rational person could honestly say these observed trends are anything but

    natural. Of course that is always subject to new information. I have been happily digging around in my spare time

    trying to find information for months now. Frankly, there is little real data that has not been twisted to one

    purpose or the other available to the public.
    To compel a man to subsidize with his taxes the propagation of ideas which he disbelieves and abhors is sinful and tyrannical.

    Thomas Jefferson

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    Doctor of Scentology DrSmellThis's Avatar
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    Phero Dude DCW's Avatar
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    Two of my co-workers ages 57 and 45

    were discussing the fact that when they were kids the weather was a lot cooler here in Houston.


    DCW

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    Moderator belgareth's Avatar
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    Default Rita and Katrina fit normal storm patterns: meteorologist

    Heated battle



    Rita and Katrina fit normal storm patterns: meteorologist



    By DR. JAMES J. O'BRIEN



    Alarmists are claiming that

    global warming - which they relate to the burning of fossil fuels - has increased the intensity or strength of

    hurricanes. But for storms that hit the Southeastern United States, there is absolutely no scientific support for a

    correlation between hurricane intensity and global warming.




    At a time when Katrina and Rita have caused extensive damage, it may

    seem like hurricanes are becoming worse, but that is a short-term view. We have excellent records going back to 1850

    on the strength of hurricanes in the Atlantic. Newspapers, diaries and scientific sources from this time period -

    before the burning of fossil fuels could have an impact on global climate - indicate the hurricane intensity was not

    less than it is today.


    Climate scientists disagree on the potential impact of global climate change on hurricane strength. But

    experts agree that variations in surface temperatures of the ocean have a strong impact on the frequency and

    strength of hurricanes.


    A warmer surface temperature will intensify a storm - and this is why some people believe that global warming

    will lead to stronger hurricanes. But there are no scientific calculations showing areas of the Atlantic warm enough

    to cause a major shift that are increasing in size.


    While it has

    been predicted that the number of Atlantic hurricanes will increase over the next 10 to 15 years - compared to

    recent years - fluctuations are common. When conditions are weak - between 1905 to 1925, for example, or between

    1975 and 1994 -- the hurricane season is mild. The last major peak in hurricane activity occurred between 1940 and

    1970.


    Climate experts

    claim that rising sea surface temperatures due to global warming increase the number of strong storms. But

    scientific data on the ocean environment does not show a correlation between surface temperatures and category 3, 4

    and 5 storms - the big ones.


    While it is tempting to blame the

    frequency or intensity of hurricanes on man, we must remember how variable - and powerful - nature is. The effects

    of natural variations on hurricane intensity are much greater than the possibility of man's

    interference.


    O'Brien is a professor of meteorology and

    oceanography at Florida State University and the director of the Center for Ocean-Atmospheric Prediction

    Studies.
    To compel a man to subsidize with his taxes the propagation of ideas which he disbelieves and abhors is sinful and tyrannical.

    Thomas Jefferson

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    Moderator belgareth's Avatar
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    Default No one can say if warming caused Katrina

    No one can say if warming caused Katrina, Rita By Maggie Fox, Health and

    Science Correspondent


    Tue Sep 27, 2:10 AM

    ET




    WASHINGTON

    (Reuters) - Scientists say it's not easy to tell if global warming caused hurricanes Katrina and Rita but on Monday

    they forecast more unpredictable weather as Earth gets hotter.


    Even

    skeptics agree that global warming is under way and that human activity is at least in part responsible. Climate

    experts also agree that this warming is likely to make the weather more extreme -- colder in some places, hotter in

    others, with droughts and severe rainstorms both more common.


    "Global

    warming, I think, is playing a role in the hurricanes," said Kevin Trenberth, a senior scientist at the National

    Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colorado.


    "But a lot of

    what is going on is natural. What global warming may be doing is making them somewhat more intense," said Trenberth,

    a member of the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.


    James

    Elsner, professor of geography at Florida State University, agreed.


    "Certainly this is an unusual season," he said in a telephone interview. "However, the question of attribution

    I don't think is very simple."


    Katrina slammed into southern

    Louisiana and Mississippi on August 29, wiping out entire towns, triggering the devastating flooding of New Orleans

    and causing more than 1,000 deaths. Then on Saturday along came Rita, which briefly hit Category 5 strength with

    winds higher than 155 mph (249 kph) before dropping Category 3 by the time it hit the Texas-Louisiana

    coast.


    "We have seen unusual seasons in the past and so we understand

    that we tend to see more strong storms when the Atlantic Ocean temperatures are warmer, which has been the case in

    the last 10 years or so," Elsner said.


    "It was warm in the 1940s and

    '50s and we saw lots of strong storms during that period."


    So far,

    2005 has not been the busiest year for storms, even though there have been 17 named tropical storms in the Atlantic,

    Caribbean and Gulf of Mexico.


    "That distinction belongs to the year

    1933, in which there were 21 storms that reached tropical storm strength," said Eric Gross, an associate professor

    of history at Harding University in Searcy, Arkansas, who studies hurricanes and other natural

    disasters.


    There were 19 tropical storms in 1995, Gross said in a

    statement.


    In theory, warmer temperatures could bring more and

    fiercer hurricanes, experts agree. Hurricanes are fed by warm ocean surface temperatures and by higher amounts of

    water vapor.


    Kerry Emanuel, a professor of meteorology at the

    Massachusetts Institute of Technology, published a study in the journal Nature last July that found big storms are

    50 percent more intense and last 50 percent longer than those in the 1970s.


    "My results suggest that future warming may lead to an upward trend in tropical cyclone destructive potential

    and -- taking into account an increasing coastal population -- a substantial increase in hurricane-related losses in

    the twenty-first century," he wrote.


    Emanuel also has found that the

    IPCC-predicted rise in sea surface temperatures -- 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit (2 degrees Celsius) -- would raise a

    storm's intensity by 10 percent.


    This temperature increase,

    Trenberth said, will add water vapor to fuel a hurricane's fury.


    Even if storms are not yet affected by global warming, experts like Emanuel and Trenberth predict they will

    be.


    "Global warming is remorselessly going on," Trenberth said.

    "This is something that when you take action, the benefits take place in 50 years and beyond. It is not something

    you can stop."
    To compel a man to subsidize with his taxes the propagation of ideas which he disbelieves and abhors is sinful and tyrannical.

    Thomas Jefferson

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    Moderator belgareth's Avatar
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    Default Sun's Changes to Blame for Part of Global Warming

    Study: Sun's Changes to Blame for Part of Global Warming

    Robert Roy Britt


    LiveScience Managing

    Editor


    LiveScience.com

    Fri Sep 30, 2:00 PM ET





    Increased output from the Sun might be to blame for 10 to 30 percent

    of global warming that has been measured in the past 20 years, according to a new report.



    Increased emissions of carbon dioxide and other heat-trapping gases

    still play a role, the scientists say.


    But climate models of global

    warming should be corrected to better account for changes in solar activity, according to Nicola Scafetta and Bruce

    West of Duke University.


    The findings were published online this

    week by the journal Geophysical Research Letters.


    Scientists agree

    the planet is warming. Effects are evident in melting glaciers and reductions in the amount of frozen ground around

    the planet.


    The new study is based in part on Columbia University

    research from 2003 in which scientists found errors in how data on solar brightness is interpreted. A gap in data,

    owing to satellites not being deployed after the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster, were filled by less accurate data

    from other satellites, Scafetta says.


    The Duke analyses examined

    solar changes over 22 years versus 11 years used in previous studies. The cooling effect of volcanoes and cyclical

    shifts in ocean currents can have a greater negative impact on the accuracy of shorter data periods.



    "The Sun may have minimally contributed about 10 to 30 percent of

    the 1980-2002 global surface warming," the researchers said in a statement today.



    Many questions remain, however. For example, scientists do not have

    a good grasp of how much Earth absorbs or reflects sunlight.


    "We

    don't know what the Sun will do in the future," Scafetta says. "For now, if our analysis is correct, I think it is

    important to correct the climate models so that they include reliable sensitivity to solar activity. Once that is

    done, then it will be possible to better understand what has happened during the past hundred

    years."
    To compel a man to subsidize with his taxes the propagation of ideas which he disbelieves and abhors is sinful and tyrannical.

    Thomas Jefferson

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    Moderator belgareth's Avatar
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    Default Scientists Clueless over Sun's Effect on Earth

    Scientists Clueless over Sun's Effect on

    Earth


    By Robert Roy Britt

    LiveScience Senior Writer

    posted: 05 May

    2005


    02:01 pm ET





    While researchers argue whether Earth is getting warmer and if

    humans are contributing, a heated debate over the global effect of sunlight boiled to the surface today.



    And in this debate there is little data to go

    on.


    A confusing array of new and recent studies reveals that

    scientists know very little about how much sunlight is absorbed by Earth versus how much the planet reflects, how

    all this alters temperatures, and why any of it changes from one decade to the next.



    Determining Earth's reflectance is crucial to understanding climate

    change, scientists agree.


    Brighter

    outlook?


    Reports in the late 1980s found the amount of sunlight

    reaching the planet's surface had declined by 4 to 6 percent since 1960. Suddenly, around 1990, that appears to

    have reversed.


    "When we looked at the more recent data, lo and

    behold, the trend went the other way," said Charles Long, senior scientist at the Department of Energy's Pacific

    Northwest National Laboratory.


    Long participated in one of two

    studies that uncovered this recent trend using satellite data and ground-based monitoring. Both studies are detailed

    in the May 6 issue of the journal Science.


    Thing is, nobody knows

    what caused the apparent shift. Could be changes in cloud cover, they say, or maybe reduced effects of volcanic

    activity, or a reduction in pollutants.


    This lack of understanding

    runs deeper.


    A third study in the journal this week, tackling a

    related aspect of all this, finds that Earth has reflected more sunlight back into space from 2000 to 2004 than in

    years prior. However, a similar investigation last year found just the opposite. A lack of data suggests it's

    impossible to know which study is right.


    The bottom line, according

    to a group of experts not involved in any of these studies: Scientists don't know much about how sunlight interacts

    with our planet, and until they understand it, they can't accurately predict any possible effects of human activity

    on climate change.


    Reflecting on the

    problem


    The percentage of sunlight reflected by back into space by

    Earth is called albedo. The planet's albedo, around 30 percent, is governed by cloud cover and the quantity of

    atmospheric particles called aerosols.


    Amazingly, one of the best

    techniques for measuring Earth's albedo is to watch the Moon, which acts like a giant mirror. Sunlight that

    reflects of Earth in turn reflects off the Moon and can be measured from here. The phenomenon, called earthshine,

    was first noted by Leonardo da Vinci.


    Albedo is a crucial factor in

    any climate change equation. But it is one of Earth's least-understood properties, says Robert Charlson, a

    University of Washington atmospheric scientist. "If we don't understand the albedo-related effects," Charlson said

    today, "then we can't understand the effects of greenhouse gases."


    Charlson's co-authors in the analysis paper are Francisco Valero at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography

    and John Seinfeld at the California Institute of Technology.


    Plans

    and missions designed to study the effects of clouds and aerosols have been delayed or cancelled, Charlson and his

    colleagues write.


    To properly study albedo, scientists want to put a

    craft about 1 million miles out in space at a point were it would orbit the Sun while constantly monitoring Earth.



    The satellite, called Deep Space Climate Observatory, was once

    scheduled for launch from a space shuttle in 2000 but has never gotten off the ground. Two other Earth-orbiting

    satellites that would study the albedo have been built but don't have launch dates. And recent budget shifts at

    NASA and other agencies have meant some data that's available is not being analyzed, Charlson and his colleagues

    contend.


    'Spurious argument'

    While some scientists contend the global climate may not be warming or that there is no clear human

    contribution, most leading experts agree change is underway.


    Grasping the situation is crucial, because if the climate warms as many expect, seas could rise enough to

    swamp many coastal communities by the end of this century.


    Charlson

    says scientists understand to within 10 percent the impact of human activity on the production of greenhouse gases,

    things like carbon dioxide and methane that act like blanket to trap heat and, in theory, contribute to global

    warming. Yet their grasp of the human impact on albedo could be off by as much as 100 percent, he

    fears.


    One theory is that if humans pump out more aerosols, the small

    particles will work to reflect sunlight and offset global warming. Charlson calls that "a spurious argument, a red

    herring."


    Greenhouse gases are at work trapping heat 24 hours a day,

    he notes, while sunlight reflection is only at work on the day side of the planet. Further, he said, greenhouse

    gases can stay in the atmosphere for centuries, while aerosols last only a week or so.



    "There is no simplistic balance between these two effects," Charlson

    said. "It isn't heating versus cooling. It's scientific understanding versus not

    understanding."


    To compel a man to subsidize with his taxes the propagation of ideas which he disbelieves and abhors is sinful and tyrannical.

    Thomas Jefferson

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    Moderator belgareth's Avatar
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    Default In summary...

    My intent in

    starting this thread was to foster open discussion of the facts surrounding global warming. In my opening posts I

    brought up unanswered questions that the scientists I know believe need to be looked into. I do not claim the globe

    is not warming nor do I claim that human activity is not associated. The first is a demonstratable trend, the second

    is an unproven but widely believed statement popularized by the mass media.

    My apologies for dumping so much

    material into the forum at one time but there is a lot we need to learn before we can make intelligent, informed

    decisions about how to respond. I tried to only put up articles that presented well balanced coments but found two

    areas that have been discussed in the past for which there is no current discussion other than vague mention. One is

    the fact that some scientists do not believe warming is occuring at all. Rather, they believe it is a normal,

    fractional deviation expected in a dynamic system that is well within standard deviations. The other which seems to

    indicate through long term climate studies, meaning over millions of years, that global temperatures may soon

    plummet into an ice age.

    On the face of it an ice age sounds far fetched. However, geological data predicts this

    warming trend and anticipates it peaking soon then temperatures falling. Currently, we are following that trend line

    pretty closely. Could the build up of the so-called greenhouse gases actually be preventing global cooling thus an

    ice age? And if so, to what extent should we be concerned and take action?

    There is another area of study that

    I ran across recently that may be associated with this topic. 65 million years ago, in the period prior to the

    asteroid impacting the earth, there was substantially less oxygen in the atmosphere than there was at other points

    in time. After the dust cleared from that big rock crashing into the earth plant life spread out and flourished

    resulting in a substantial increase in oxygen levels. Shortly after that the first of the ice ages began. A lot of

    plant life was killed off and oxygen levels declined. The globe warmed again ending that ice age. So far there is

    insufficient data to conclude anything but the coincidence is worth noting as that cycle seems to repeat itself. At

    this point in time oxygen levels in the atmosphere are slightly higher than they were 65 million years ago. Is this

    related? I don't know but it should be considered in the grand scheme of things.

    One of the articles I posted

    above mentions several satellites intended to study solar incidence and albedo, something I've mentioned before.

    They are sitting in storage waiting to be launched. Also mentioned is the fact that solar gain could account for

    10-30% of the global temperature increase but that estimate could be off by as much as 100% This is important as we

    really don't have any proofs of what is causing global warming in reality. Albedo is important as are the aresols

    that in part control the albedo. When all is said and done, global warming is primarily solar powered and heat loss

    into space is a critical factor. Greenhouse gasses may act as a blanket but the other factors need to be considered

    as well.

    Now comes my rant...
    We don't KNOW the causes of global warming and it is critical for us to learn

    them as quickly as possible. Any remedial action taken prior to answering the basic questions of cause and effect is

    little better than running in circles, flapping our arms and squawking. Let's not waste time, energy and resources

    trying to fix something until we know how to fix it. Let's use those resources to discover the facts so we actually

    know what we are doing and can do it right.

    DCW,
    Your comment is a good point even if it is subjective. The

    temperatures have risen slightly all over Texas including here in the Dallas area. At the same time, humididty has

    risen considerably making it seem even warmer. The humidity is actually a greater concern because water suspended in

    the air drastically increases it's heat carrying capacity resulting in reduced heat loss during the night and

    greater heat gain during the day.
    Last edited by belgareth; 10-02-2005 at 01:18 PM.
    To compel a man to subsidize with his taxes the propagation of ideas which he disbelieves and abhors is sinful and tyrannical.

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    Moderator belgareth's Avatar
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    As a last word (you believe

    that, right?? ), Galileo was nearly hung for heresy by his fellow scientists. Einstien was called a crackpot

    as was Newton, Franklin, Lawrence and Alverez. People knew Columbus was going to sail off the end of the earth. Just

    because they disagree with the established (scientific) community, it does not make the wrong or right. A good

    scientific discussion leaves the door open to all possiblities. Nor can you disprove anything through logic, you can

    only demonstrate its probability or improbability. As my stats prof was fond of saying: "In a universe as big as

    this one is, even the most improbable of events can and likely have occured many times."
    To compel a man to subsidize with his taxes the propagation of ideas which he disbelieves and abhors is sinful and tyrannical.

    Thomas Jefferson

  11. #11
    Doctor of Scentology DrSmellThis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by belgareth
    As a last

    word (you believe that, right?? ), Galileo was nearly hung for heresy by his fellow scientists. Einstien was

    called a crackpot as was Newton, Franklin, Lawrence and Alverez. People knew Columbus was going to sail off the end

    of the earth. Just because they disagree with the established (scientific) community, it does not make the wrong or

    right. A good scientific discussion leaves the door open to all possiblities. Nor can you disprove anything through

    logic, you can only demonstrate its probability or improbability. As my stats prof was fond of saying: "In a

    universe as big as this one is, even the most improbable of events can and likely have occured many

    times."
    You may have meant to say you cannot prove or disprove anything through statistical

    (probabilistic) reasoning or logic. That is true, by definition. With other kinds of logic you can prove and

    disprove all sorts of things.

    But thank goodness we have statistical logic, and can discuss probabilities, since

    so much in nature appears chaotic in some range or another. In the face of chaos, statistical logic enables us to

    make what are most likely the best choices, as opposed to having no idea.

    So if our best guess of the

    moment is that 10-30% of global warming is due to changes in solar activity, what of the other approximately 80%?

    What will be the likely consequnces of global warming, assuming the most likely human factor (e.g., 80%, or a better

    number if you have it), and the current rate and trajectories of things?

    In short, from what I read it ain't

    pretty, and represents an extremely huge risk. The bigger the risk, the more insurance is needed. So it

    appears we need to invest in some insurance -- the best "policy" given all the risks, as we know them at this

    moment. This is why we have every country in the world (except ours) wanting to make treaties. It's just to

    purchase a little insurance for the children of humanity.

    Meanwhile, I agree wholeheartedly that we need to place

    greater emphasis on collecting data.

    I'm all for skepticism and scientific openmindedness, but here is the

    critical question with the "skeptical" position: Is the nature of this need for data such that we should freeze

    other concerned activity (e.g., limiting greenhouse gas emissions) in the meantime, given the risks (not

    certainties) of such inactivity?

    If science turns up some compelling, final and definitive explanation of global

    warming, would we not make adjustments as we go along in whatever actions we feel are currently needed?

    If one

    still wants to believe it would affect the world economy too much and too badly to do anything, then one has a

    burden to answer this question: What would be the minimum economic cost of reasonable controls on greenhouse gas

    emissions, and how would that be unacceptable? Since we are by far the worst "offender" in those terms, would not

    the world impact be greatest here? What of the study I referenced suggesting the impact here would not be that

    great?

    Maybe the best way to look at it is that we might be taking somewhat of an economic risk in the short

    term (since sustainable industry is more economic in the long term), a risk that cannot begin to compare with the

    risk of inactivity. I don't believe we can afford to wait another ten years while we collect more data. How about

    we just make our action subject to scientific review every so often?

    But I am not going to accept the so far

    groundless claim by the Bush administration, that doing something would hurt "our economy" (trans: his

    economy -- I mean, excuse me, the economic well-being of all the world's poor ) too much, given the

    extreme greed, corporatism and nationalistic selfishness they promote. Call me "skeptical", but I doubt Bush's

    reason for wanting to abstain from Kyoto is a greater scientific mind than the rest of the world.
    Last edited by DrSmellThis; 10-02-2005 at 04:12 PM.
    DrSmellThis (creator of P H E R O S)

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    I would have a better

    conscience going bankrupt trying to protect/save the environment than going bankrupt trying to ensure capitalism

    never dies.

    Whether global warming is a trend or not, one cannot dispute that there is a potential for

    catastrophic changes in the global weather system.

    Now, the environmental activist's views would be to let it

    come, but I believe that "others" will want to do everything possible to prevent any negative aspects of global

    warming to permeat their existence.

    I'm SLIGHTLY leaning toward the environmental side, but I think that

    cutting down the human stress on the environment would keep things from going to extreme levels. That, IMO, would be

    the best course, without altering what would be considered normal.

    Remember than in history animals and plants

    did not fair well in drastic changes in the global weather. And with humanity putting such an enormous stress on the

    planet (not so much pollution but agriculture, industrializing, overpopulation) there will be, IMO, hardships in

    First World countries of the like already plaguing third world countries.

  13. #13
    Full Member wood elf's Avatar
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    Kyoto is based upon a

    potentially, not to say likely, flawed premiss. It is neither logical nor rational to assume that greenhouse gases

    are the primary culprit in the face of current data. Nor is it logical to assume mankind is the sole or primary

    contributor or even a major contributor. Having read much of this thread in the last day and reflecting on the

    sceptical comments of scientists whose work I see daily and respect highly I find that reasoning to be self serving

    more than rational. It matters little that Bush's administration is making the statements, Kyoto is flawed. Take as

    an example your rationalization of the statistics related to solar gain. It is equally possible that it makes up

    sixty percent or even more of the gain. It is also likely that other factors are contributing. Have you not yet

    considered the amount of heat energy released by cooking, internal combustion engines, power plants and all the many

    other sources of heat? How does the billions of BTUs generated through those forms effect the energy balance?



    One article mention particulate matter absorbing energy which would lead to increased snow pack melt. The phase

    change would account for still more energy released into the seas. Kyoto does not address the issues related to

    particulate matter at any time. It is beyond doubt that particulate matter drifting from the Asian continent to be

    deposited on the northern snows packs and glaciers is a primary factor in glacial melt. The ramifications of that

    heat gain are substantial as it creates a large pool of free energy that would have reflected back into space had

    not the darker partulate matter absorbed the energy and melted the ice. Do you understand the inherent energy

    required to create such a phase change? Do you comprehend why warm air is less capable of carrying sufficient energy

    to change the state of so much water where solar radiation in the ultraviolet range is capable? That is part of the

    concept of albedo that you overlook completely. Once that energy is absorbed and re-radiated in the form of low

    frequency energy it is far less likely to disperse or otherwise be lost into space. Instead after it loses energy

    melting ice it will flow south in the form of cooled air causing greater freezes in sub artic climates. We have not

    seen that occurance. Can the science alleging solar gain through greenhouse gas effects account for that? I think

    not. Kyoto may be a concept not supported by the Bush administration but it also is not good science.

    Once again

    you overlook completely the other greenhouse gases such as methane, and CFCs. The South American and Asian

    continents produce massive amounts of both gases. Another contributor is the earth itself in the form of numerous

    geological activities. Kyoto does not address or even acknowledge these matters either. The only thing Kyoto does is

    attempt to address one set of gases from developed countries and does not address all the other scientifically

    relevent sources of heat gain. Your comments completely overlook those as well. Indeed, you overlook the majority of

    the science involved in the entire global warming debate. I am sorry to say so and do not mean offense but you sound

    as if the more important issue is the politics involved rather than the science. You certainly are not addressing

    the scientific flaws in your position on the matter.

    There was a story told me recently. Two environmental

    scientists from University of Texas were asked to speak before the United Nations regarding the global warming

    issue. Once they forwarded to the UN council their data, based on solid research and climatic data, the invitation

    was revoked. I have read their research, it is good work but it demonstrates that Kyoto and much of the supporting

    arguments for Kyoto is based on nonsense. I am told that shortly afterwards they both were forced to leave their

    University jobs. Their grants had been revoked. It is not the only story of its kind around the world. Research that

    counters Kyoto claims is being suppressed. Why is that? Why would any rational person take action based on flawed

    and unsupportable science? It would not be a responsible action.
    Last edited by wood elf; 10-02-2005 at 09:52 PM.

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    Moderator belgareth's Avatar
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    DST,

    My statements in no

    way were meant to imply that the other 80% were human caused and that 80% you cite for other causes could as easily

    be 40 percent based on the assumption of 100% possible error and many of the 40% may be natural causes. In other

    words, that is a fallacious argument but I think you already know that.

    From what you read? Did you read any of

    the thoughtful and well balanced articles I posted? What is the source of your information? Other than the global

    warming crowd, whose credentials I'd like to see as I find them questionable, few real climate scientists see the

    dire consequences you allude to. They express it as a possibility in need of greater study.

    You know that I

    strongly support protecting the environment. You have also presented the argument that we should take Kyoto style

    action regardless of solid evidence. I didn't agree with you on the second point the first time you presented it

    and I don't agree with it now. You also know I presented the economic argument a long time before the Bush crowd

    did. Maybe their stance is based on science rather than politics? Their agreement with the Asian countries certainly

    is not an economic benefit to anybody in the BBush camp.

    I am never going to support wild flailing around in

    the dark as opposed to rational forward movement. As I tried to point out repeatedly, the wild flailing around has

    done little good and has often done harm. Taking action on the shoddy science supporting Kyoto is no more than wild

    flailing around in the dark. I do find it curious that you accept the one brief study claiming that spending

    billions of dollars to cut carbon dioxide emmissions in the US and around he world would not harm the economy but

    you seem to be utterly disregarding or attempting to twist the facts presented disputing the theory of greenhouse

    emmissions and their relationship to global warming.

    I have not once argued against sustainable industry.

    Rather, I am arguing for rationally approaching the issue and discovering what is sustainable. You've advocated a

    common sense approach but I've learned that common sense rarely is and that the obvious is just as often

    detrimental as it is helpful. As noted several times, acting without knowing the real facts has time and again cost

    us both environmentally and economically. After all the times the environmental groups have misled and outright lied

    to further their agenda, I see no reason to accept their claims any more readily than the government's. All I want

    are facts from which to make rational decisions. It is not rational to act out of fear without sound scientific

    evidence to support your actions. Frankly, Kyoto and the reasoning behind Kyoto frighten me as much as any of the

    rest of it because Kyoto is designed to fulfill a political agenda, not protect the environment. I would not be the

    least surprised to discover that Kyoto was fostered for some economic gain, just the same as the CFCs scare was.



    Let me give you two hypothetical scenerios. The first is that the temperature changes are utterly out of man's

    control without drastic measures such as a ring around the planet partially blocking sunlight. Should we tamper with

    a natural phenomena? Should we spend trillions of dollars to change the natural course of nature?

    The second is

    the question of global cycles. What if the geological evidence is completely on target and the globe is really due

    for another ice age? What if our finding a way to cut greenhouse gases actually plunges the earth into a premature

    ice age that would kill billions of people? It is entirely possible that this scenerio is occuring in some

    variation. Don't just shrug it off. The science behind it is far better than the hockey stick theory that Kyoto is

    firmly based on.

    I am not trying to be a doomsayer here. I am very concerned about what is happening but I am

    also concerned that we are jumping in once again where we have no clue what we are doing. Why are you so eager to

    jump into something that only has the slightest basis in good science while ignoring far stronger scientific

    evidence?
    Last edited by belgareth; 10-03-2005 at 06:04 AM.
    To compel a man to subsidize with his taxes the propagation of ideas which he disbelieves and abhors is sinful and tyrannical.

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    Moderator belgareth's Avatar
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    Now, back to the point. I

    started this thread in an attempt to discuss the scientific aspects of global warming or stated more accurately,

    climate change. I have repeatedly presented questions that are being asked by real professional scientists in their

    laboratories and even lunch rooms. So far, not one of the technical issues have been addressed. Am I wasting time

    here? It is important and it very likely could affect your lives and those of your children. It could alter the face

    of the earth forever!

    I am not interested in political debate on the subject. My opinion of political anything

    is very low. What politicians, political action committees or special interest groups have to say is utterly

    irrelevent until backed up by good scientific evidence, which they have all managed to avoid thus far. Political

    debates, ignoring facts in favor of political agendas and picking at the opposing party is not going to solve the

    problems, it could quite possibly kill us and is by definition irrational.

    Is there anybody out there interested

    in scientific facts?
    To compel a man to subsidize with his taxes the propagation of ideas which he disbelieves and abhors is sinful and tyrannical.

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    I'm interested in fact;

    after all, I am writing a book about the subject.

    But there are times when I question your sources, just as you

    question mine.

    Let's say for a moment that global warming is a normal trend. What if we haven't reached the

    peak yet? What if the peak is 100 years from now? 200 years? 1,000? What if when the peak occurs (or long before it)

    the earth is inhospitable for humans (or impossible for a rational civilization to function)? What then? Should we

    take steps to allow our continued existence? I would vote yes, in spite of my environmental leanings. I'm not so

    much of a fatalist that I would wish the end of humanity .

    So how would we go about ensuring our

    survival? Domed cities? Perhaps.

    For years I have been greatly interested in the works of Paolo Soleri.

    Arcologies. A single building that would sustain anywhere from 10,000 to ten million people. Wild stuff, yeah, but

    already Japan is in the beginning stages of building what they call a superskyscraper, which has the same

    fundamentals as Soleri's Arcology. In an Arcology, everyone is just a walk away from their home, their work, food,

    water, utilities, stores and recreation. Personal living areas are supposed to be as big as an apartment, and the

    area around your home is altered to your liking (and you'll be neighbored with people with similar likes). I guess

    it's hard for most people to wrap their minds around the idea, but I think it's a fantastic possibility.

    In any

    case, if the environment becomes too harsh to live in, there will be limited resources. So conserving air, water,

    and being totally efficient with food and waste will be a neccessity.
    I've made a few diagrams on some ideas of

    mine:
    [img]http://img120.imageven

    ue.com/loc110/th_fd3_Air_Unit_Big.jpg[/img]



    Some have even

    suggested using lunar diagrams for

    inspiration:
    [IMG]http://img43.imageven

    ue.com/loc105/th_aeb_homestead.jpg[/IMG]


    Anyway, I'm rambling. I guess the question is this: Do we or

    don't we try to do something to reverse global warming, whether it's a trend or not? And are we prepared for

    further problems? If not, what should we do?

  17. #17
    Moderator belgareth's Avatar
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    Actually, more to the point, is

    global warming a real phenomena or are we seeing a normal cycle of heating and cooling? Thus far, the evidence for

    global warming being a long term trend is extremely shaky and does not take a lot of facts into account. You have to

    understand that my education is all physical sciences and many of my friends along with my girlfriend are bonafide

    scientists. I am not just rambling, I am bringing up points that are discussed by people extremely well educated in

    the physical sciences.

    You are not only welcome to question my sources but you are encouraged to do so. Did you

    read the articles I posted recently in this thread? Please note who the authors are, they are either scientists

    doing or overseeing real research in these areas or they are quotes from the same types. Did you consider any of the

    points brought up by wood elf? None of those points mentioned are being widely discussed publicly yet they are

    important in understanding what is really going on. I'd love to see anybody addressing those points here rather

    than just saying they question the sources or outright denying their validity.

    To address your question, let's

    say global warming is a cyclic trend. If you follow the historical cycles that have been occuring in a regular

    pattern for almost 60 million years you'll see that the globe never gets too warm for life to exist. Often the

    peaks were only slightly warmer than the current averages but sometimes they are considerably warmer. Now let's

    imagine that the temperatures are approaching the peak and carbon dioxide build up in the atmosphere is a normal

    part of it as may be indicated by studies mentioned above. We figure out some brilliant, far reaching means to

    drastically reduce the carbon dioxide in the air resulting in a drastic cooling that brings an ice age crashing down

    on us. Worse yet, because of our meddiling we have created a shortage of greenhouse gasses causing the globe to cool

    far more than it would have other wise. Instead of a temperate band at the equator you have solid ice pole to

    pole.

    There are a lot of holes in that scenerio but it is actually more scientifically sound than global warming

    theory as it is based on concrete, confirmed data. The biggest single hole in it is the negative feedback caused by

    the depletion of greenhouse gasses simply because the theory of greenhouse gasses is not fact but theory with little

    in the way of experimental confirmation. However, if we dismiss the greenhouse gasses and the ramifications of

    depletion from the scenerio we logically must also dismiss it from global warming theory. Without the greenhouse

    gasses theory the entire global warming scenerio falls apart. However, the global cooling is only weakened by the

    lack of that element.

    One point I find most incredible is the reliance placed on computer modeling. Let's keep

    in mind that these are the exact same computer models that cannot accurately predict rainfall amounts or even

    probability a week into the future. Yet we are taking the results over a 100 year time frame as gospel? Do you

    realize the margin for error in a single year is more than 200% and is cumulative over the life of the predictive

    model?

    Please, if you are writing a book and have done good research on it you should have data and references

    you can share with us. Is this a scientific study? Share with us any sources and information. I've invested a lot

    of time studying this subject, much of it through non-public resources. If you have something you can share to

    enlighten us, let us have it.
    To compel a man to subsidize with his taxes the propagation of ideas which he disbelieves and abhors is sinful and tyrannical.

    Thomas Jefferson

  18. #18
    Doctor of Scentology DrSmellThis's Avatar
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    Sorry, but I don't have the

    mastery to argue all the technical issues, though I am not as incapable of distinguishing the quality of the

    arguments and science as some might think. Everyone here is influenced by their politics. Due to lots of generic

    science/research training, I'm adequately responsible and capable of integrating things when confronted with a

    particular area of research, when I have the energy for it.

    But some are almost fighting tooth and nail at

    times, and I don't have the energy for it. Maybe I'm getting old/stupid/losing my mojo, and just want to enjoy my

    interactions.

    Though I have my questions about some of the scientific interpretations in this thread, for

    example, as they dovetail with statistics (note: one link below suggests "50%" human causes) interpretations of

    articles, or ideas (e.g., reducing our impact is artificially manipulating the environment, or dangerous) and have

    many issues to learn more about and discuss, I honestly have only so much time to devote to this particular

    context, in the manner this particular conversation has been collectively carried out (without commenting further,

    or wishing to in the future.).

    Moreover, I am not an expert, a climatologist, or anything else; and have made

    that clear from the outset. So whether I personally omit or underemphasize this or that technical issue in my

    discussions here matters little, as a result. My opinion matters little. To have more technical knowledge than me is

    not difficult. I am only a lay consumer of information, and right now need to form opinions without obligation to

    "teach" the stuff or write comprehensive, technical, scientific posts. I don't know how realistic it is to expect a

    professional academic discussion here anyway. It's not that I haven't seen or read some of the stuff to get a

    feel, even whenever I get the chance; but that's as far as it goes right now. I went to Al Gore's conference on

    global warming a month ago here; but couldn't get in. I have been soaking in information as time and energy

    permits, and have read most of the posts, if not all of them. I know that it is important, and have relatively high

    intellectual standards, IMHO; but at this moment I cannot devote myself to becoming an adequate, artculate

    spokesperson for any particular position. I have a lot of inescapable obligations to attend to right now, in

    multiple areas, and need to manage my energy. I hope you all understand. Even talking about myself in this manner is

    not my cup of tea. Who cares?

    In the mean time, I still want to contribute something that could be of value to

    some. I encourage everyone to judge for themselves, rather than go by opinions I might express, without the

    expertise to back it up, or analyze the body of research conclusively. These are just a few links I have explored

    recently. They are mostly pretty good starting points for a layperson, IMHO. I think it is better to start with some

    global information and fundamentals, before potentially getting confused by technical subtleties.

    Somewhere on

    my computer I have another batch, from a month ago when I also didn't have the energy to post anything. I have also

    explored a lot of the "skeptic" links, many of which have had very similar content to some of the posts here. Those

    have been in the minority in my readings, though I have sought what appear to be solid sources of general

    information using politically neutral search terms.

    Since this thread has been dominated by "skeptics" of sorts,

    seeing another side might be helpful to some.

    Some of these links do in my opinion lead to information that

    responds to some of the technical issues bought up here, though you might have to dig a little bit.

    In many

    cases, these links support the things I've said here and would say. In some cases, they just raise another side to

    a multisided debate, where I am currently unwilling to see it as one sided. In other cases they suggest that the

    discussion should not be limited to CO2, but suggest that we still need to target it as part of the picture, for

    example.

    Those who disagree with the linked information might well dismiss it. I nonetheless encourage

    interested parties to read the links, and follow it wherever it takes

    them.

    http://www4.nationalaca

    demies.org/onpi/webextra.nsf/web/climate?OpenDocument




    http://www.ucsusa.org/global_warming/



    http://www.ucsusa.org/global_warming/sci

    ence/global-warming-faq.html




    http://www.ucsusa

    .org/global_warming/science/global-warming-the-need-for-more-research.html


    http:

    //www.ipcc.ch/




    http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/oa/climate/globalwarming.html





    http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/paleo/globalwarming/pale

    odata.html




    http://www.nrdc.org/globalWarming/default.asp



    http://www.ucsusa.org/global_warm

    ing/science/science-of-global-warming.html




    http://www.ucs

    usa.org/global_warming/science/emissions-of-heattrapping-gases-and-aerosols.html




    http://www.climatehotmap.org/



    http://www.globalwarming.net/



    http://www.ucsusa.org/global_wa

    rming/science/ipcc-climate-change-impacts.html


    http://www.newscientist.com/channel/earth/climate-change/



    [url="http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/paleo/globalwarming/end.html"]http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/paleo/globalwarming/end.html[/

    url]



    http://www.sierraclub.org/globalwarming/overvi

    ew/overview4.asp


    http://www.

    ucsusa.org/global_warming/science/skeptic-organizations.html




    http://www.ucsusa.org/



    http://www.ucsusa.org/globa

    l_warming/science/sound-science-for-public-policy.html




    http://www.ucsusa.org/

    global_warming/science/what-we-do-know-about-climate-change.html


    http://www.ucsusa.org/global_warming/science/crichton-thriller-state-

    of-fear.html
    Last edited by DrSmellThis; 10-04-2005 at 03:32 AM.
    DrSmellThis (creator of P H E R O S)

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    Moderator belgareth's Avatar
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    Doc,

    I can appreciate your

    position. You'll recall me saying more than once that I am not qualified to make judgments on matters of phychology

    for the same reasons. Despite my best efforts there is no way I could ingest enough valid information to feel

    competent in that area.

    Thanks for those links. A number of them I've already followed up an the rest will get

    my attention in the near future. When I have time later I'll post a system for tentatively rating reliability of

    data based on past experience. It has been pretty accurate in forecasting reliability of claims made by various

    entities. Not perfect but helpful.

    For the rest,

    My chief complaint with the entire global warming debate is

    that it begins with the hockey stick theory. In scientific circles it has in large part been debunked and Mr. Mann,

    the creator has flatly refused to provide information to allow others to try to recreate his work. Most recently he

    seems to be spending a lot of his time hiding in various obscure places. It appears that much of the current work

    being done is predicated on that dead thesis. There is little doubt that there are changes ongoing in our world and

    have been going on for many years. On first review it surprises me that the hockey stick was so easily accepted

    until we note that it was not originally presented through scientific channels but was brought up through the mass

    media and special interest groups who pressured politicians.

    The biggest single reason for my surprise is the

    obvious flaw in believing the earth's temperatures could have remained relatively stable for a thousand years

    without stopping to scratch their heads and triple check the figures. Perhaps I am expecting too much from reporters

    and politicians but that one detail is on the face of it absurd. The earth, indeed the solar system and the entire

    galaxy is in a continuing state of change and evolution.

    I am not here to argue the politics of it though. I am

    honestly concerned both that changes are occuring that don't look good for mankind or the environment as we know

    it. I am also concerned that efforts to control global warming may be on the wrong track. If that is the case it is

    entirely possible that efforts could be futile or even detrimental to the environment. It would not be the first

    time our eforts have done so.
    Last edited by belgareth; 10-04-2005 at 04:39 AM.
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    Belgareth: You’re

    questioning the validity of the data, and I’m just asking what we should do in either case.

    I’ve had people on

    your side of the argument say that we can’t cause a noticeable difference in the environment, either negatively or

    positively. So from their POV I doubt we could cause an ice age. My opinion is that: It’s easy to take something

    apart, but very difficult to put it back together. The Humpty Dumpty principle, I guess.

    I think the single

    thing you fail to grasp that Doc and I are talking about is that if human activity has even the SLIGHTEST effect on

    global warming then we have a responsibility to correct our part in it. That’s all. “You don’t let the getaway

    driver go free if he never stepped inside the bank.” He’s an accomplice, no matter how small a part he played. If

    human activity is an effect then we’re all guilty, equally. I do everything I can to conserve and recycle, but my

    dedication just causes someone to pollute more. So in a way, we’re all guilty in some respect.

    So I’m not

    talking about bringing the global weather under our control, to be changed at our whim. I’m just talking about

    adapting to the changes, rather than running from them or doing the opposite: Changing things to suit our needs.



    An example:
    One thing I’ve noticed in the past 10 years is that our seasons are slowly moving around on the

    calendar. In the past our coldest month was December, our hottest was July, and our wettest was April and November.

    Now, our hottest is August, coldest is Jan/Feb, and our wettest is May/June and December. Technically, that’s not

    really a problem. Our calendar, like all timepieces, was created by man and therefore not subject to the laws of

    nature. But has anyone thought about what this would mean to our economy? It too runs on a system of time. And

    instead of adapting to the changes, bureaucrats and scientists will sit around and argue about how to put the

    seasons back into their “right” place rather than to make paperwork changes on getting the economy to flow with the

    changes. We can’t control the weather, we can’t control Mother Nature. We can, however, (or should) control our

    human affairs, or at least attempt to do an adequate job of it. Which is easier?

    I think that sums up my

    attitude toward global warming.

    My book, on the other hand, uses global warming as a setting in the second

    volume. I put together a hypothetical future (something I do as a hobby. Futurism). I generally look at the effects

    of warmer temperatures. My hypothesis is that global warming continues at the current pace for another 100 years

    (within the span of my story). Hurricanes continue to plague the Gulf; drought forces the creation of another Dust

    Bowl that stretches from the Rockies to the Appalachians. The temperate zone is redrawn based on weather and

    climatologist reports, moving it up to include all of Canada and the Northwest Territories. The Tropic Zone expands

    to include most of the southern US and northern half of South America. The ice caps melt down to a single chunk,

    raising the sea level. Florida and Mexico become a chain of islands. All this forces the American public to migrate

    to the Great Lakes. Chicago becomes the new Capitol. The East coast remains mostly unharmed, turning into a

    rainforest. (I haven’t decided why people leave that area). The West Coast, however, turns into something resembling

    Africa: Volcanoes, earthquakes, dry weather with annual monsoons. (I have something of a mystery element to be

    played out here.)

    I’m sure you’re going to bombard me with inconsistencies that I’ve never thought of, but I’m

    using bits of info I’ve gather from here and there. I have only a high school science education, and that was pretty

    limited. In fact, 8th grade was the last time we had geography and earth science, and my 9th grade physics teacher

    slid everyone through, he only showed up once and week, and the class was party central all the time. So I’m

    actually more limited in science knowledge than I want to be, but I’ve learned the parts I like by reading stuff on

    the net. I can grasp ideas and theories, but any mathematical data is Greek to me.

    That’s why I can question

    some of your sources: I have no idea what they’re talking about because I’m too stupid

    .

    Ours is not to question why: Global warming is happening. We all know it, we're seeing it. I'm not disputing

    your facts. I think that scientists should determine if there is a human factor in it; if not, then move on to the

    next phase. If there is, then figure out a way to correct whatever part the human factor plays, then move on to the

    next phase. What's the next phase? Ensuring that civilization doesn't crumble, anarchy doesn't break out, or some

    doomsday paranoid with a big red button or hypodermic needle doesn't wipe us out. And ensuring that we can maintain

    what we have or, if needs be, change to accommodate the new climate.

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    Moderator belgareth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Netghost56
    Belgareth:

    You’re questioning the validity of the data, and I’m just asking what we should do in either case.

    Ours is not

    to question why: Global warming is happening. We all know it, we're seeing it. I'm not disputing your facts. I

    think that scientists should determine if there is a human factor in it; if not, then move on to the next phase. If

    there is, then figure out a way to correct whatever part the human factor plays, then move on to the next phase.

    What's the next phase? Ensuring that civilization doesn't crumble, anarchy doesn't break out, or some doomsday

    paranoid with a big red button or hypodermic needle doesn't wipe us out. And ensuring that we can maintain what we

    have or, if needs be, change to accommodate the new climate.
    You've hit one of my questions perfectly

    and if you'll go back and look you'll see I've said just that. We don't know if human activity is causing global

    warming. We need to figure out if it is. Once we've done that we need to determine if our impact on temperatures is

    a good or a bad thing. Take my ice age scenerio. A well informed climatologist will tell you that it is one of many

    possibilities but we don't know if that is going to come to pass either. If it is on the horizon, should we

    consider doing something about it? What of the potential for starving billions of people in the case that it is

    really what is happening? What are the downside issues? Once again, we don't know.

    My point with this thread is

    that we don't know. The hugely publicised scenerio of global warming and the relationship to greenhouse gasses was

    built on a single study dubbed the hockey stick. In large part the hockey stick has been debunked but the frenzy

    over global warming continues. It now has a life of its own. I prefer the term climate change because that is what

    it really is. My whole contention through out this thread is that we don't know enough to take rational action. All

    I ask is that we dive into the research and learn the truth as far as we are able. Then and only then can we make

    logical, rational decisions that will be effective with a minimal risk of adverse side effects. From where I sit,

    that seems the only rational approach. Anything else is, as I've said time and again, wild flailing around in the

    dark. We cannot afford that.

    So your fiction stories have inconsistancies? No problem, that's kind of why it's

    called fiction. Since I am an avid sci-fi and fantasy fan I would be biting off my own nose to expect it to be

    scientifically accurate.
    To compel a man to subsidize with his taxes the propagation of ideas which he disbelieves and abhors is sinful and tyrannical.

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    2005 set to be second

    hottest year on record


    2005 will be the second or third warmest year on record globally, Britain's

    national weather service said on Friday, as climate concerns build among people in polar and low-lying areas and in

    the insurance and utility industries.

    "Whether it is second or third depends on how Siberia reacts between

    now and the end of the year," said Wayne Elliott, Met Office spokesman.

    "1998 was the warmest ever,

    2005 is looking at being second. It will be another very warm year generally, which is in line with global climate

    change research."

    The Met Office bases its measurements on both land and sea temperatures.

    After 1998,

    the four hottest years globally were the last four years, according to Met Office data going back to 1861. The

    second hottest year was 2002, followed by 2003, 2004 and 2001.

    The trend adds weight to concern among many

    scientists that the world is hotting up and that human activity including burning of fossil fuels and generation of

    "greenhouse gases" by industry is playing a major part.

    Two recent hurricanes have left the United

    States with tight fuel supplies, energy companies say.

    Meanwhile, in Europe Portugal and Spain have experienced

    their worst droughts ever recorded, and further east, floods and torrential rain drenched Switzerland, Germany,

    Austria and EU membership-candidates Bulgaria and Romania.

    "The vast majority of scientists would now say

    that there is a significant, substantial human effect on the environment," Craig Hutton, project manager at the

    GeoData Institute, University of Southampton, said on Friday.

    "I think that's good enough to get on and

    start to plan in reality for the effects of climate change."

    Southampton University is working with IBM to

    research a early warning system for UK flood responses, to anticipate storm and tidal

    surges.

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20

    051014/sc_nm/environment_weather2005_dc

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    Not to go into the environmentally

    damaging effects of human activity, saying that 2005 is the second warmest year ever is an overstatement. Perhaps in

    the past 100 or 200 years, but what about 10,000 years ago??

    Also, if I remember right the "age of dinosaurs" was

    even warmer. (You didn't know I was that old did ya'?? )
    Freedom begins when you tell Mrs. Grundy to go fly a kite.
    --Lazarus Long

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    2005 set to be second

    hottest year on record

    They didn't start keeping official records until about 150 years ago.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Netghost56
    2005 set to be

    second hottest year on record

    They didn't start keeping official records until about 150 years

    ago.
    Yes, the whole point being that it has gotten warm before. (Not to mention wiping out whole

    species!)
    Freedom begins when you tell Mrs. Grundy to go fly a kite.
    --Lazarus Long

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    It was quite a bit hotter

    during the renaissance period, for example. In geological measure the last 150 years has been far less

    than the blink of an eye. The stats saying warmest, wetest, coldest etc. in that short of a period are meaningless.

    The relative statistical universe is too small.
    To compel a man to subsidize with his taxes the propagation of ideas which he disbelieves and abhors is sinful and tyrannical.

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    I know it's pretty late in

    the game, but I was perusing a bookmarks folder from back in the 90s and came across this lecture from the UN

    University. It's really long but has lots of data- I haven't had a chance to read all of it yet, but as far as I

    can tell it discusses the human impact and the consequences of climate

    change.

    http://www.unu.edu/unupress/lecture16-17.htm

    l

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    Moderator belgareth's Avatar
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    Default Global warming: Carbon dioxide levels highest for 650,000 years

    While the title seems to be pointing to a major

    issue, I'm not so sure that it is. Unlike many in the mass media this one is fairly well balanced and avoids being

    alarmist in large part. One of the most telling statements in the article was the last one
    In the most

    extreme scenarios, global warming could drive up sea levels and drown coastal cities, cause floods, droughts and

    freak storms, and create tens of millions of "climate refugees."

    That's something I've been trying to get across for a while. We are mostly hearing worst case

    information and hear very little else. That's part of what I mean when I say Alarmist.




    Another interesting point was that during the period mentioned we have had Ice

    Ages and warming that seem to have been in no way effected by carbon dioxide levels. It seems just a bit strange but

    maybe another point in the article can shed some light on the reasons. Current carbon dioxide concentrations are

    believed to be .000380% of the gases in the atmosphere. The estimated earlier levels were .000275% of atmospheric

    gases. A 27% change sounds a lot more impressive than a difference of .000105%. When you consider that the

    measurements were taken in a place like the antartic I have to question the validity of those measurements. I doubt

    if that range of variation even comes close to the margin of error.


    In any case, it's a good article that brings up some good points.





    Global warming: Carbon dioxide levels highest for 650,000 years Thu Nov 24,

    2005




    PARIS (AFP) - Levels of carbon dioxide, the principal

    gas that drives global warming, are now 27 percent higher than at any point in the last 650,000 years, according to

    research into Antarctic ice cores.


    The study, adding powerfully to

    evidence of human interference in the climate system, appears in the run-up to a key conference on global warming

    which opens in Montreal next Monday.


    The evidence comes from the

    world's deepest ice core, drilled at a site called Dome Concordia (Dome C) in East Antarctica by European

    scientists who battled blizzards and an average year-round temperature of minus 54 Celsius (minus 65 Fahrenheit) and

    made a thousand-kilometer (650-mile) trek to bring up supplies.


    The

    core, extracted using a 10-centimetre (four-inch) -wide drill bit in three-metre (10-feet) sections, brought up ice

    that was deposited by snows up to 650,000 years ago, as determined by estimated layers of annual

    snowfall.


    Analysis of carbon dioxide trapped in tiny bubbles in the

    ancient ice showed that at no point during this time frame did levels get anywhere close to today's CO2

    concentrations of around 380 parts per million (380 ppm).


    CO2 levels

    began to rise with the Industrial Revolution, when coal began to be burned in large quantities, and have surged in

    recent decades as more countries become industrialized and millions more cars take to the road.




    As a result, billions of tonnes of CO2 are now being released into the air each year

    from fossil fuels that previously were underground. In pre-industrial times, the CO2 concentration was just 278

    ppm.


    Today's rising CO2 concentrations are 27 percent higher than

    at the highest level seen over the 650,000-year time scale, according to the study, which appears in the weekly US

    journal Science.


    The Dome C core, extracted by the 10-country

    European Project for Ice Coring in Antarctica (EPICA), outstrips by 210,000 years the previous record-holder,

    drilled at an Antarctic site called Vostok.


    "We have added another

    piece of information showing that the time scales on which humans have changed the composition of the atmosphere are

    extremely short compared to the natural time cycles of the climate system," said lead author Thomas Stocker of the

    University of Bern's Physics Institute in Switzerland.


    Skeptics

    about man-made global warming point out that Earth has been through many periods of higher and lower temperatures in

    its history as a result of natural processes.


    Volcanic eruptions

    that disgorge CO2 and other greenhouse gases, oscillations in the planet's axial spin and minor changes in its

    orbit can have a major impact on surface temperatures, sometimes plunging Earth into prolonged Ice Ages, the last of

    which ended some 11,000 years ago.


    But over the past decade, a

    mountain of scientific evidence has accumulated about Man's impact on temperatures through the unbridled burning of

    fossil fuels.


    In the past five years, the average global temperature

    has risen by 0.2 C (0.36 F) -- 100 times higher than is normal for such a short time scale -- and 2005 is on course

    for being the hottest year on record.


    Glaciers in the Alps,

    Greenland and the Himalayas are shrinking and ice shelves are cracking in the Antarctic peninsula in what appear to

    be early signs of dangerous climate change, according to recent studies.


    The 12-day Montreal talks, gathering members of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), will

    focus on the future of the Kyoto Protocol after this pact, aimed at curbing carbon pollution, runs out in

    2012.


    Scientists say political progress for tackling the problem

    falls miserably short of what is needed to avoid long-term damage to the climate system.




    In the most extreme scenarios, global warming could drive up sea levels and drown

    coastal cities, cause floods, droughts and freak storms, and create tens of millions of "climate

    refugees."
    Last edited by belgareth; 11-29-2005 at 03:53 PM.
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    Now this is what "The Day

    After Tomorrow" was about.

    Key warming ocean current slowing down: scientists


    The Atlantic Conveyor, a

    life-giving ocean current that keeps northern Europe warm, is slowing down, scientists said on Wednesday.

    If the

    30 percent slowdown seen over the past 12 years is not just a blip, temperatures in northern Europe could drop

    significantly, despite global warming, they added.

    Scientists have long forecast that the Atlantic Conveyor that

    carries warm surface water north and cold deep water back to the equator could break down because of global

    warming.

    According to the theory, rising air temperatures cause ice caps to melt, making the water less salty

    and therefore less dense so it can't sink and flow back south.

    The scientists on Wednesday said this was the

    first time that observations had put flesh on the bones of the theory.

    "This is the first time we have observed

    a change in the current on a human timescale," oceanographer Harry Bryden said, noting that it had completely shut

    down during the ice ages.

    But he said the latest figures were far from proving a trend and that constant and

    long-term monitoring was needed.

    "It is like a radiator heating the atmosphere and is too important to leave to

    periodic observations," Bryden told a news conference to flesh out a paper he co-authored in Nature science

    journal.

    FROM MOROCCO TO MIAMI

    The Hadley Center for Climate Prediction and Research has calculated that if

    the current stopped, temperatures in northern Europe could drop by up to six degrees centigrade in 20 years.

    The

    latest figures, collated last year, are from a string of monitoring devices at various depths in the Atlantic from

    Morocco to Miami.

    It was the fifth snapshot since 1957 taken in the same area of the temperatures and currents

    in shallow, mid and deep ocean.

    While measurements in 1981 and 1992 had shown little change, those in 1998 and

    2004 had shown a major shift, with less of the warming Gulf Stream getting up to Greenland and less of the cold,

    deep returning current coming back.

    The so-called Atlantic Meridional Overturning Current is known as the

    Atlantic Conveyor, of which the Gulf Stream is the surface component.

    "This is tantalizing evidence that there

    may be a large change in ocean circulation under way that paradoxically could cause regional cooling," said Phil

    Newton of Britain's independent Natural Environment Research Council (NERC).

    However, the scientists stressed

    that they could not be completely sure what was driving the change or how it might alter or be compensated for by

    winds that pick up the radiated heat and circulate it.

    -----------

    Not much detail, but they mention a 6

    degree drop. From what I've read, a temp change of only 2 degrees is substantial and could be catastrophic(sp).



    Now, I don't think it's going to cause an Ice Age, a la Hollywood- but there isn't enough evidence yet. And

    for the most part, it talks about Europe being under the gun. Naturally so, since they have a temperate climate but

    are situated almost completely in the Artic zone.

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    Netghost,

    This article

    highlights something I mentioned early in this thread. We don't know what is happening to the climate! It is

    changing, certainly. But how and why? An article last week mentioned glacial melting and included areas of Europe in

    that forecast. Yet this article mentions that European temperatures my drop substantially. Glacial growth, increased

    snow pack and cloud cover could increase the amount of energy reflected back into space resulting in over all global

    cooling. It may not even be associated with carbon dioxide,they don't really know that either. Some scientists have

    suggested that the globe is about to enter a cooling trend on it's own. Could this be a percursor to that?



    There was a discussion about global warming at my house a few weeks ago. Beer and BS session but the majority of

    the people involved were science types. There was a lot of disagreement about where things are going but the one

    thing they did agree on was the weak conclusions and the need for a fresh approach. The best suggestion that came

    out of all the talk was to clear all assumptions, wipe the slate clean and compile the data, all the data in logical

    groupings to create sound models and establish probabilities for various scenerios. All agreed that the models being

    used right now are flawed by previous assumptions and biased research.
    Last edited by belgareth; 12-01-2005 at 06:54 AM.
    To compel a man to subsidize with his taxes the propagation of ideas which he disbelieves and abhors is sinful and tyrannical.

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