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mac



Joined: 07 Mar 1999
Posts: 5001

PostPosted: Tue Jan 21, 2014 1:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I just finished reading through Judith Curry's full written testimony before the Senate. She is much more careful with her presentation than the bit summarized in Techno's posting. It bears reading for both deniers and science advocates. In particular, she does not claim, as some have, that warming has stopped. Instead, she notes, quite accurately, that the rate of warming has slowed to 0.05 degrees per decade rather than the projected 0.20 degrees per decade. She is a bit less careful with sea level rise, and silent on both storage of heat in the oceans, and acidification of the oceans. But I cannot disagree with her concluding remarks, they reflect what I have said here repeatedly:

Quote:
Not only is more research needed to clarify the sensitivity of climate to carbon dioxide and understand the limitations of climate models, but more research is needed on solar variability, sun-climate connections, natural internal climate variability and the climate dynamics of extreme weather events.

Improved understanding of these aspects of climate variability and change is needed to help government officials, communities, and businesses better understand and manage the risks associated with climate change.


In other words, take actions which are responsible but not extreme, and do not presume the worst predictions are correct, and continue to do research. Republicans have tried to block both moderate actions and research. The Tea Party is even worse.
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youwindsurf



Joined: 18 Aug 2012
Posts: 499
Location: North Shore High School

PostPosted: Tue Jan 21, 2014 2:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, the Tea Party is worse. They are predominantly religious conservatives who believe in the "end of times". Therefore, why try to save the Planet when the "end times" will cleanse all?

The Gospel of Luke describes a complete unraveling of the social fabric, with widespread calamity and war:

Then he said to them, “Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be great earthquakes, and in various places famines and pestilences. And there will be terrors and great signs from heaven. But before all this they will lay their hands on you and persecute you, delivering you up to the synagogues and prisons, and you will be brought before kings and governors for my name's sake. This will be your opportunity to bear witness. Settle it therefore in your minds not to meditate beforehand how to answer, for I will give you a mouth and wisdom, which none of your adversaries will be able to withstand or contradict. You will be delivered up even by parents and brothers and relatives and friends, and some of you they will put to death. You will be hated by all for my name's sake. But not a hair of your head will perish. By your endurance you will gain your lives.
“But when you see Jerusalem surrounded by armies, then know that its desolation has come near. Then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains, and let those who are inside the city depart, and let not those who are out in the country enter it, for these are days of vengeance, to fulfill all that is written. Alas for women who are pregnant and for those who are nursing infants in those days! For there will be great distress upon the earth and wrath against this people. They will fall by the edge of the sword and be led captive among all nations, and Jerusalem will be trampled underfoot by the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled.
“And there will be signs in sun and moon and stars, and on the earth distress of nations in perplexity because of the roaring of the sea and the waves, people fainting with fear and with foreboding of what is coming on the world. For the powers of the heavens will be shaken. And then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. Now when these things begin to take place, straighten up and raise your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.”
And he told them a parable: “Look at the fig tree, and all the trees. As soon as they come out in leaf, you see for yourselves and know that the summer is already near. So also, when you see these things taking place, you know that the kingdom of God is near. Truly, I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all has taken place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.
—Luke 21:10–33

Barbara Bachmann:

Rep. Michele Bachmann predicted that the conflict in Syria was a sign that the world was going to end, because the President was arming rebels in that country: “This happened and as of today the United States is willingly, knowingly, intentionally sending arms to terrorists, now what this says to me, I’m a believer in Jesus Christ, as I look at the end times scripture, this says to me that the leaf is on the fig tree and we are to understand the signs of the times, which is your ministry, we are to understand where we are in God’s end times history.”

What's wrong with a bit of extra carbon in the atmosphere when your future is bound up in the coming of the Kingdom of God?
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coboardhead



Joined: 26 Oct 2009
Posts: 1922

PostPosted: Tue Jan 21, 2014 4:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mac wrote:
I just finished reading through Judith Curry's full written testimony before the Senate. She is much more careful with her presentation than the bit summarized in Techno's posting. It bears reading for both deniers and science advocates. In particular, she does not claim, as some have, that warming has stopped. Instead, she notes, quite accurately, that the rate of warming has slowed to 0.05 degrees per decade rather than the projected 0.20 degrees per decade. She is a bit less careful with sea level rise, and silent on both storage of heat in the oceans, and acidification of the oceans. But I cannot disagree with her concluding remarks, they reflect what I have said here repeatedly:

Quote:
Not only is more research needed to clarify the sensitivity of climate to carbon dioxide and understand the limitations of climate models, but more research is needed on solar variability, sun-climate connections, natural internal climate variability and the climate dynamics of extreme weather events.

Improved understanding of these aspects of climate variability and change is needed to help government officials, communities, and businesses better understand and manage the risks associated with climate change.


In other words, take actions which are responsible but not extreme, and do not presume the worst predictions are correct, and continue to do research. Republicans have tried to block both moderate actions and research. The Tea Party is even worse.


Mac

Thanks for the information. I have to say, I have been sitting back and learning a lot from the interchange between you and GT.

Just for arguments sake...let's say that the Russian scientists and the vast majority of climate scientists are both correct....to some degree. Global warming is both cyclic and man caused. To what proportions, we may never really be able to determine (my opinion).

Does this really change anything in how we should respond? With the exception of the theory of the impending mini ice age, most scientists are continuing to predict and measure sea level rise and global land and ocean temperature increases. We know that this energy is responsible for changing weather, including more severe droughts and storm events. We also know that sea level rise will put millions at increased risks.

As an engineer (not a rocket scientist although I have performed analysis on actual rocket parts), I am tasked with designing structures that will be in service some 75 years minimum. Without clear direction from government bodies, designing for the effects of global warming will not occur. Engineers in other disciplines are faced with the same.

As you stated, we cannot really afford to put economies at risk in an all out effort to combat global warming. Taking reasonable steps to reduce our risks and/or reduce the human caused portions of climate change make sense.

The real argument should be centered around what we can do/afford. I would look forward to that discussion. Perhaps a new thread?
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 13863

PostPosted: Tue Jan 21, 2014 4:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

LHDR wrote:
He must be unable to understand this or is intentionally misleading or simply doesn't care.

I.

DON'T.

CARE!

Its sole purpose, which it illustrated perfectly, was to illustrate once again that one can find any AGWA position imaginable, by the thousands, thus trying to elicit a VALID quick'n'easy consensus from this or any other group is not possible.
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 13863

PostPosted: Tue Jan 21, 2014 4:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

coboardhead wrote:
The real argument should be centered around what we can do/afford. I would look forward to that discussion. Perhaps a new thread?

There are whole books, by the shelf full, by experts of all persuasions, on that topic. You guys must have 100-hour days, 24-day weeks, and 50-month years.
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mac



Joined: 07 Mar 1999
Posts: 5001

PostPosted: Tue Jan 21, 2014 4:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

CB--I'll return to ignoring the "engineer" who doesn't understand the value of peer review and careful research. You are correct that the degree of human-cause behind global warming should not alter the basics of our approach. However, it should alter the cost structure, because at present the carbon fuel profiteers enjoy unrealistically high profits and demand because they transfer much of the cost of their fuels to the commons. Those that don't agree obviously don't understand or approve of markets that capture all costs.

Since the Jimmy Carter Presidency, we have known that an oil-based economy is sensitive (held hostage?) to the politics of a tribal Middle East. We have known that someday supplies would be less, and more difficult to obtain, driving prices up. Yet we continued to subsidize bad behavior in numerous ways, from not charging the cost of Middle East military responses to the root cause, to subsidizing, in massive ways, urban sprawl. We have done nearly nothing--until the Obama administration.

We have known for about a decade that the cheapest source of new energy is conservation. California has implemented this--and has a carbon footprint dramatically less than that of Texas. Insulation has been a great idea, and very cost-effective. The subsidies for renewals stimulated by TARP has dropped the price of technology (helped by competition from the Chinese), and resulted in the equivalent of 4 nuclear power plants worth of electricity. All of this with little economic dislocation--but lots of whining from the oil and coal sectors.

All of this was a good idea. The costs of sea level rise will be trillions in the United States alone, even if the best scenarios come to pass. This is about survival, not the ranting of the Birchers "massive income redistribution." I have 4 grandchildren, so far, and a sense of responsibility to them--not to the nutters who don't care because they think the rapture is coming before the planet gets too hot.
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coboardhead



Joined: 26 Oct 2009
Posts: 1922

PostPosted: Tue Jan 21, 2014 5:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mac

Regarding the carbon industries...

Even if we cannot, accurately, measure the actual effects a pound of carbon produces, the argument for taxing carbon could take many forms.

Right off the top of my head, we have a multi trillion dollar war, caused, in no small part, by our interest in protecting a source of oil. I have had family members serve in that battle. It is disrespectful, of their service, to leave the debt unpaid. Tax it! Pay for the war.

Coal power plants directly cause $ 50 to $100 billion in health care costs yearly. Tax it! Pay for increased health care costs.

These taxes would lessen our deficit and encourage conservation.
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mac



Joined: 07 Mar 1999
Posts: 5001

PostPosted: Tue Jan 21, 2014 8:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

CB--I agree that a carbon tax, revenue neutral or slated to subsidize renewable energy, makes sense and would be found to meet a nexus. The rationale for coal would be to mitigate externalities--impacts on public health and climate. The the rationale for oil is also public health and climate, though less severe on both--plus the cost of the military. But I want to be careful here. I am not a Rand Paul isolationist; I think there are benefits to having a military presence beyond the US borders. I also think that a significant amount of the military budget is because Congress can't say no to military contractors. So maybe one third to one half of the military budget is directly related to being prepared to exert force in the Middle East and other areas to assure oil security. The oil industry has correctly identified that oil security has economic benefits for most Americans--and thus has benefited from a larger market share than they would have if the consumer paid for the military directly, with an understanding that the security was in the price of the commodity.

It is interesting to look back on this debate, which I've seen and read about since graduate school. The first publication I remember on climate change was by Jim Titus of EPA. Couldn't find it specifically, but this will give you a taste, from 1985:
http://papers.risingsea.net/downloads/Challenge_for_this_generation_Barth_and_Titus_chapter1.pdf

I've been lucky to be around great scientists for much of my career. I spoke with Titus, read his work, and considered him to be a little bit of a chicken little. I have had the honor of appearing before some big science groups--National Academy of Science panels, the Pew Commission on the oceans when Leon Panetta chaired the panel and people like David Rockefeller were on the panel. It was always a little intimidating, and I was always careful to be sure of what I knew to be true, and what I though might be an issue. Titus isn't so careful, but Jim Hansen, and most of the scientists I know now working in the field are.

So I can accept the observations of Judith Curry for what seems to be mainstream, if careful. But the rantings of Lord Monckton and Bjorn Lomborg as "science?" Please.
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mrgybe



Joined: 01 Jul 2008
Posts: 2553

PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2014 9:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

"The older I get, the better I was"
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mac



Joined: 07 Mar 1999
Posts: 5001

PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2014 11:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Meanwhile, not yet spun by the carbon apologists, this note on the "hiatus" in warming. According to NASA's Gavin Schmidt and a new report, the 2013 average global land surface temperature was 1.78 degrees Fahrenheit above the 20th century average. Nine of the 10 warmest years in the 134 year long record have occurred in this century. Only one year during the 20th century--1998 when there was that anomalous high from an El Nino that so excites the deniers--was warmer than 2013.
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