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Common climate in Canberra and Washington

Richard Black | 17:57 UK time, Monday, 26 July 2010

Turn the clock back four years, and you could not have slipped a cigarette paper between the climate policies of the administrations in Washington DC and Canberra.

With the election of Kevin Rudd in December 2007, paths diverged.

Against the backdrop of opinion polls showing climate change as a major concern for Australians, Mr Rudd's Labor government ratified the Kyoto Protocol, unveiled new targets for cutting carbon emissions and announced that a new emissions trading scheme (ETS) would be the principal vehicle for reaching those targets.

A year later, Barack Obama entered the Washington White House, talking a positive game on the issue but making clear his desire or even his need for legislation to proceed through both Houses of Congress, and maintaining his opposition to re-entering the Kyoto fold.

Now, there's a case for arguing that the old days are back, and that Canberra and Washington are once again in step.

Julia GillardMr Rudd no longer holds the reins of power, having been deposed as Labor leader and prime minister in a bloodless coup by his former deputy Julia Gillard - at least, until the forthcoming election.

There were many reasons for Mr Rudd's fall, but one was that voters were dismayed by his plans to weaken and delay advent of the ETS.

Ms Gillard was expected to - indeed, had hinted that she would - restore the fully-fledged measures that Mr Rudd had watered down.

Now, she too is being accused of dilution. In a televised pre-election debate that my colleague Nick Bryant has written up, she shrank from restoring the full ETS scheme and instead proposed setting up a "citizens' assembly" on climate change.

There's an argument that, like committees everywhere, it would simply kick the issue into the long grass. And that's exactly how it's being perceived by swathes of the Australian electorate, according to some analyses.

Meanwhile in the US, there's been a deal more cogitating over the causes and effects of the Senate Democrats' decision not to push for a full climate bill during this session, as mentioned at this blog last week.

Ross Douthat in the New York Times argues that for all the finger-pointing that's going on, there's one analysis that makes sense:

"If their bill is dead, it was the American conservative movement that ultimately killed it."

In his book, there's a strong case for saying the conservative movement was correct to do so and that inaction is actually the wise course.

That's not the message, however, coming from the latest look at the US electorate.

"Our surveys reveal a small decline in the proportion of people who believe global warming has been happening, from 84% in 2007 to 74% today..."

...says Jon Krosnick of the latest in a series of polls conducted from Stanford University.

Protest against oil in DCWhatever the reason for the decline - and Mr Krosnick cites figures showing cold weather in heavily-populated parts of the US was behind it - 74% still represents a pretty sizeable majority.

Against this background, you might expect that activists in favour of climate legislation would be mightily miffed by last week's abandonment.

Not a bit of it, according to an analysis in The Hill, the Washington political website. Activists were so disappointed by what they saw as the limited scope of the Kerry-Lieberman bill, the latest version of the draft legislation, that some at least are saying "good riddance".

"Given that the energy bill was already a big capitulation to polluters, the failure to move it will not exacerbate the enthusiasm gap that was already there due to its underlying lameness..."

...says Adam Green, co-founder of the Progressive Change Campaign Committee.

The problem facing Mr Green and his counterparts in Australia is this: given that their regimes are both failing to deliver what the public apparently wants, despite all the groundwork they had put in and despite all the rhetoric that has been spouted, what can they do to make sure regimes do deliver anything more than words once they eventually get into office?

In both societies, some might argue that the tipping point is easy to identify: that it will come when climate change is a big enough electoral issue that leaders are prepared to take on powerful business lobbying once they actually attain office.

But that's to ignore a simple reality. Both nations have bipartisan politics, which tends to drag parties and leaders towards the middle ground.

Once again, then, not a cigarette paper between the two nations. Once they stood together to destroy the Kyoto Protocol; now their leaders are talking a greener game, but still failing to deliver what their electorates say they want.

And in both countries, proponents of climate action are scratching their heads and wondering what to do about it.

Comments

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  • 1. At 7:11pm on 26 Jul 2010, Paul Kerr wrote:

    "Our surveys reveal a small decline in the proportion of people who believe global warming has been happening, from 84% in 2007 to 74% today..."

    These are high figures for any survey of public opinion!!

    Are you not a little sceptical about how the American public really feel?

    Consider
    [Unsuitable/Broken URL removed by Moderator]

    The figure is 57% v 71% (in 2008) better still only 14% believed global warming would seriously affect them personally


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  • 2. At 7:23pm on 26 Jul 2010, Jack Hughes wrote:

    Copenhagen was a tipping point.

    The public can see through this nonsense now. And when the power cuts start they may even remember who is to blame.

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  • 3. At 7:33pm on 26 Jul 2010, TarquinTaylor wrote:

    I have been doing some research into various aspects of scientific development. I have found that there is a level of knowledge generally unknown to the general public. The development of 'Exotic matter' or 'monatomic elements' particularly has caught my attention. No one I have spoke to is aware of this science and it's potential in terms of fuel cell technology, time space properties and it's potential for repairing damaged DNA. For more listen to audio lecture of David Hudson and Laurence Gardner on 'Youtube'. Hudson was a farmer in the US who made the dicsovery on his own land and Gardner is an expert geaneologist and ancient historian. It would appear generally that the world has been held back techonologically by 50 to 100 years particularly in the development of alternative fuels. Bearing in mind that the first electric car ran in 1912, development of this science has been held back by major oil producers and governments who rely on oil by them buying up patents and discoveries made down the years. In every other science advances have been staggering. I begin to ask why do we not know about 'Exotic matter' and what research is being done currently to develop this substance. As a type 1 superconductor with anti gravitational, time space, and mind/health giving properties. I am amazed that I have only just become aware of it's existance. There is information now on the internet, but there is also alot of what appears to be disinformation about it. No one is talking. It is obvious that the US government is taking it seriously as they stopped Hudson developing it under the umbrella of 'National Security'. It cost him 8 million dollars. I understand the fear of oil becoming redundant as a fuel supply as it underpins world economy and therefore any change must be measured. The same with health. Could the world deal with people living, even, 25 years longer, I think not. But that is no reason for the suppression,if that is what it is, of this knowledge and similar. No one seems to be investigating this line and little appears to be published in the main stream. Certainly I have never read much about it and I do not recall seeing any documentary about it. Contact if you need any more info!

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  • 4. At 7:34pm on 26 Jul 2010, Paul Kerr wrote:

    Link removed =
    Climate Change in the American Mind: Americans’ Global Warming Beliefs and Attitudes in January 2010

    available @ http://environment.yale.edu/

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  • 5. At 7:37pm on 26 Jul 2010, ghostofsichuan wrote:

    There are legitimate arguments about the results that could be gained by ETS and the already agressive purchase of forest by coal and oil companies is a forshadowing of the true purpose. Since the banks have created great amounts of lost personal income, governmental taxes and publicaly assumed debts the acceptance of a new tax would be difficult. A global problem should have a global solution and having some countries participate and others not seems pointless. There is a movement toward clean technologies and the only time government gets involved is when they see a political and revenue advantage. The governments would like to pretend that they are doing something and if the thing they do produces profits at stock markets that is the usual choice they will make. Ms. Gillard just elminated a proposed tax on super profits by the coal industry and that may be an indication as to how this will all play out. People paying to pollute does not reduce pollution. The governments couldn't regulate banking and protect investors how can the administer a gobal process. ETS is a proposed bubble created by investors and stock markets and will have the same fate as the other bubbles and once again it will be the people who pay and realize no benefits.

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  • 6. At 7:39pm on 26 Jul 2010, Jack Hughes wrote:

    Maybe Gillard and Obama have been reading those nasty extremist websites that Richard warned about last week ?

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  • 7. At 7:45pm on 26 Jul 2010, blunderbunny wrote:

    @TarquinTaylor #3

    Excellent post.

    I think it's time for foil hats all round, then it's home for Tea, Buns and Lashings of Ginger Beer ;-)

    You'll fit right in here.....

    Regards,

    One of the Lobby

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  • 8. At 7:45pm on 26 Jul 2010, bowmanthebard wrote:

    Nearly all democratically-elected politicians want to keep their constituents happy. If the politicians of Australia and the US are less enthusiastic than before about acting to curb global warming, they are probably getting a slightly different message "on the doorstep" from what the surveys say.

    Personally, I trust a good politician's instinct for self-preservation more than a statistician's survey.

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  • 9. At 7:58pm on 26 Jul 2010, Paul Kerr wrote:

    I very much agree with Bowmanthebard ignore the spin from selected surveys surveys are easily cherrypicked like the literature.I think Richard doth protest too much, he understands quite well

    Its intersting and very frustrating for good science but the politicians swing with public opinion not scientists

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  • 10. At 8:01pm on 26 Jul 2010, Brunnen_G wrote:

    "Our surveys reveal a small decline in the proportion of people who believe global warming has been happening, from 84% in 2007 to 74% today..."

    --------------------------------------

    Anyone else spot the flaw?

    I'm as sceptical as you could possibly want, and I believe the world is experiencing a warming trend too.

    The question critically, doesn't ask whether or not human activity is contributing to this trend.

    What are the stats for THAT question?

    Isn't this the sort of thing a responsible journalist is supposed to ask?

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  • 11. At 8:28pm on 26 Jul 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    Richard writes:

    "That's not the message, however, coming from the latest look at the US electorate.

    "Our surveys reveal a small decline in the proportion of people who believe global warming has been happening, from 84% in 2007 to 74% today..."

    ...says Jon Krosnick of the latest in a series of polls conducted from Stanford University."

    Tsk, tsk. A sad case of cherry picking a 'convenient' poll.

    “Several national surveys released during the last eight months have been interpreted as showing that fewer and fewer Americans believe that climate change is real, human-caused and threatening to people,” Krosnick said. “But our new survey shows just the opposite.”

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/06/10/when-you-dont-like-the-poll-numbers-make-up-your-own-poll/

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  • 12. At 8:55pm on 26 Jul 2010, Richard Black (BBC) wrote:

    #11 Rockies - the important point Anthony Watts points up is the difference between the "what do you think about X?" question, and the "do you care enough about X that it decides the way you vote?" question. Which is what I was getting at towards the end of my post.

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  • 13. At 9:02pm on 26 Jul 2010, Barry Woods wrote:

    How will our descendants look back at the mass CAGW hysteria in 50-100years. No doubt thinking they are superior to us. Whilst, no doubt having their own future mass panic/delusion.

    Philipp Stott has some thoughts how it might end. In a rush, or slowly fade away..

    http://thegwpf.org/opinion-pros-a-cons/1305-global-warming-the-death-of-a-grand-narrative.html

    “The death of a grand narrative is often protracted and largely unnoticed, until, one day, its metalanguage, its corpus of words of magic, its ‘points de capiton’, to use the phrase proposed by the Freudian psychoanalyst, Jacques Lacan (1901 – 1981), which for so long have kept people sub-consciously in its thrall, eventually lose all of their power and meaning, and prove no longer relevant to the lives of the majority. Such is the fate of mainstream Christianity in Britain today. For other grand narratives, by contrast, the collapse may be unexpectedly swift and dramatic, as with the tearing down of the Berlin Wall in 1989. The work of the ‘mauerspechte’ can thus take centuries, but it may also be accomplished within days or months.”

    And:

    "Such is the current fate of global warming, the grand narrative that human greed and profligacy are changing the world’s climate apocalyptically, a sin that can only be appeased through public confession and self-sacrifice to the Goddess, Gaia. Since the farcical conclusion of the Copenhagen Climate Change Conference last December, it has been fascinating, as an independent academic, to witness the classical collapse of this grand narrative, as if social and philosophical theories are being played out before our gaze. From Australia to the US, both the public and politicians are rowing back from the dangerous weir of trying to constrain economic growth in the name of achieving a utopian, low-carbon economy. The pursuit of carbon footprints is proving a ‘yomp’ too far.

    Of course, the metalanguage of global warming continues to be employed by certain politicians, including the British Prime Minister, David Cameron, by some of the media, including parts of the BBC, and by green activists, but one can already sense the power of its ‘points de capiton’ draining away daily."

    ---------------

    Maybe it will be one Polar Bear, video too many that draws a laugh, from someone important enough to stop it.

    Or even another photo, of some child staring at a desert on a BBC blog

    Or just a gradual, fading away, over a few cold winters and average summers.

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  • 14. At 9:36pm on 26 Jul 2010, ghostofsichuan wrote:

    My guess is that in 50 to 100 years those people will look back the way we look back at major crisis and see that they could have been avoided, that the political system was corrupted by business and that the people paid a high costs to resolve a matter that should have never happened. They will also be dealing with some set of problems created by the same relationships between business, banking and governments that promote wealth to the disadvantage of the people. There are no signs that human beings are getting any better at governance. Kings, Queens, Ruling Clerics, Thugs and gangsters, dictators and a smattering of democratic governments that have been bought by business and banking interests, about the same as one thousand years ago.

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  • 15. At 9:42pm on 26 Jul 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    #12 Richard

    Thanks for that feedback. I'm honoured.

    I just hope that other readers do check that link to put that particular poll into perspective. The only poll that really counts in the US right now is in the Senate and that one is going the wrong way for those who were dreaming of any action on this.

    In the meantime, in the midst of the Great Recession, there is a video of Obama saying "Under my plan, electricity rates will necessarily skyrocket." People are always more concerned about jobs and their wallets NOW than about saving the world from some possible future threat - especially this one. Too much crying wolf, for what looks like a dog.

    Cheers.

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  • 16. At 00:09am on 27 Jul 2010, Yorkurbantree wrote:

    Similar results in Europe as shown elsewhere. In Britain the Labour party became a laughing stock on the environment as they preached the need for action on reducing pollution, while at the same time supporting huge growth in the aviation sector. People are not stupid and politicians can not get away with 'greenwash'.

    The fact that such a small number of people share the WUWT approach to climate change is hugely encouraging and the best way of rationasing the seemingly endless output of noise from the 'denialosphere', but as long as governments fail to regulate things properly then that hardcore 10 - 15% of people who don't care about the environment will continue to mess things up for the rest of us.

    Exciting times though - especially in Australia, and now that the sceptics have had their 'Battle of the Bulge' moment, the likes of Delingpole et al can be put back in their boxes and forgotten about...

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  • 17. At 00:30am on 27 Jul 2010, OilfiredGreen wrote:

    The usual hardcore minority of sceptics on this site again. Because in my personal experience, the majority of people around me and in the media do share the consensus with the scientists that we are strangling the planet with global warming. Surveys and statistics aren't perfect, but let's not forget that 99.9% of scientists DO accept the overwhelming evidence of AGW, and I'm sure most people (apart from perhaps the sceptics) do agree that the sun is at the centre of the solar system.

    And why not praise a moral rather than hedonistic approach to life? Are there no better values than greed? Don't you see what you're missing with your corrosive cynicism? Personally I want to share the resources of the planet, not wipe out other species and ecosystems. It's sick what damage man has caused, and how the environment is contaminated and ripped away by his narrow-minded thirst for power. It's always concerned me that in stark contrast with the checks and delicate balances of the rest of nature, we don't fit into cyclical systems which clean up after us. Instead we demand exponential growth and have brought a harmonious and self-repairing environment to breaking point. This can't continue, whether or not you support AGW, and don't kid yourselves that it can. Throughout history, whole civilizations have been lost by their failure to protect their environment. This threat applies to ALL of us today.

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  • 18. At 04:45am on 27 Jul 2010, John Robertson wrote:

    So 74% of Americans believe Global Warming is actually happening. Why is this assumed to mean that 74% of Americans approve of adopting an Emissions Trading Scheme. There are a some significant issues that need to be resolved before jumping to this conclusion.

    1. Assuming that Global warming is occurring, is it at a sufficiently high rate to warrant drastic intervention.

    2. Is this rate of global warming the result of human activity?

    3. Assuming that Global Warming is a result of human activities, are carbon dioxide emissions the predominant cause?

    4. If so, is it reasonable to assume that an Internationally supported ETS can be politically achieved and implemented by the major industrial nations?

    5. If so, does it make economic sense to attempt to reduce carbon emissions now, rather than to adopt future measures to mitigate the effect of global warming when new technologies will be available?

    Its time we embarked on a rational debate on these issues, rather than resorting to narrowly framed public opinion polls designed to elicit the desired response. Until we do so, the public are going to be increasingly turned off by the scaremongering, strident tone of what passes for debate on these issues.

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  • 19. At 08:10am on 27 Jul 2010, bowmanthebard wrote:

    #17 OilfiredGreen wrote:

    let's not forget that 99.9% of scientists DO accept the overwhelming evidence of AGW

    Where did you get this figure?

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  • 20. At 08:16am on 27 Jul 2010, MangoChutney wrote:

    @Richard Black

    Hi Richard,

    Your link (Jan Krosnick) to the article states:

    Selected Results

    Why selected? Why not publish the whole survey?

    Three out of four Americans believe that the Earth has been gradually warming as the result of human activity and want the government to institute regulations to stop it

    And yet the actual survey reveals nothing of the sort. Q14 of the survey states:

    You may have heard about the idea that the world's temperature may have been going up slowly over the past 100 years. What is your personal opinion on this - do you think this has probably been happening, or do you think it probably has not been happening?

    to which 74% think global warming may have been happening, but Question 2 states:

    (Assuming it’s happening) Do you think a rise in the world’s temperature is being (would be) caused mostly by things people do, mostly by natural causes, or about equally by things people do and by natural causes?

    and the response is as follows:

    Things People Do 30
    Natural Causes 25
    Both Equally 45
    Don’t know (DO NOT READ) *
    Refused (DO NOT READ) -


    That most definitely does not equate to 75% Americans believing threat man is responsible, unless you add that 65% believe the threat is natural causes.

    http://woods.stanford.edu/research/americans-support-govt-solutions-global-warming.html

    (the Woods Institute at Stanford is not the same as the Woods Hole Institute btw)

    Just found the actual pdf for the full list of questions:

    Q1. What do you think is the most important problem facing the country today?

    Global warming / climate change / greenhouse effect got just 1%, although in Q2. What do you think will be the most serious problem facing the world in the future if nothing is done to stop it? it got 11% (in case I'm accused of disinformation!)

    With regards to Gillick, Jo nova sums up like this:

    What’s a politician to do to convince the masses? They’ve tried the panel of 2,500 so-called experts at the UN who spend five years writing 3,000 page reports. They’ve tried spending millions on advertising campaigns, prize winning documentaries, coloring in competitions in schools, and they’ve tried bullying, name-calling and endless rounds of repetition.

    Now instead of convincing the masses, they’ll just “convince” 0.01%. Democracy be done with it.

    By “moving forward” to the Rudd summit of 2008 (or as Bolt points out, the Republican deliberative-poll farce of 1999) Gillard thinks if we pin down 150 people and subject them to more PR, more staged events, and what… are we giving them a job for a year? She thinks this will do the trick?

    On the Republican committee of 1999, Bolt shows how bad it was at being a guide to the public consensus:

    "After two days of solid nagging, these (350) “ordinary Australians” backed the republic by an overwhelming 73 per cent. Just one month later the rest of the nation voted on the same proposal at the referendum—and rejected it in every state."

    This is not how democracy works. We elected representatives to consider issues, we don’t draw names out of hats. If our elected reps won’t read both sides of the story and make up their minds, let’s have a referendum.

    The only good news is this “plan” will cost the country a million times less than the ETS.

    POST NOTE: The bad news is that it will cheat the country out of a proper debate.


    http://joannenova.com.au/2010/07/gillards-non-plan-for-the-climate/

    /Mango

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  • 21. At 08:53am on 27 Jul 2010, bowmanthebard wrote:

    MangoChutneyUKOK #20 wrote:

    "the actual survey reveals nothing of the sort"

    You're quite right -- it reveals nothing like what Richard Black and others have claimed for it. It reveals much more about what people have claimed for it than anything else.

    That most definitely does not equate to 75% Americans believing threat man is responsible, unless you add that 65% believe the threat is natural causes.

    Should that be 70%? (i.e. "Natural Causes" 25 + "Both Equally" 45?)

    Richard Black wrote: proponents of climate action are scratching their heads and wondering what to do about it

    Really? -- I think they're actively misrepresenting things, comforted no doubt by the thought that "we have morality on our side". Krosnick appears to be a "professor of communication and of political science" -- yeah, another "science".

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  • 22. At 09:05am on 27 Jul 2010, LabMunkey wrote:

    @ 17.

    "Surveys and statistics aren't perfect, but let's not forget that 99.9% of scientists DO accept the overwhelming evidence of AGW" i can assure you, as a scientist who encounters many many scientists on his travels, this is emphatically not true.

    @mango #20

    i'm glad you posted that, saved me doing it. it's the usual trick, ask a question that is framed about global warming- then report the results as proof that man is the cause. just as melting ice proves man is the cause and rising sea levels prove man is the cause.

    It's an unbelievable scientific fallacy to use symptoms to prove a cause, and unfortunatley ones environmentalist like richard fall for time and time again.

    The death of this 'theory' cannot come soon enough, so we can actually start worrying about REAL environmental matters again.

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  • 23. At 09:39am on 27 Jul 2010, LabMunkey wrote:

    at all AGW 'believers'

    http://ricochet.com/conversations/Manmade-Global-Warming-The-Solution

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  • 24. At 10:01am on 27 Jul 2010, scotth1 wrote:

    I think the situation in Australia isn't what it first appears.

    One of the reasons that the government haven't been able to get their ETS legislation up, was the conservative opposition at the second voting in parliament changed leaders to someone who had publicly stated that "Climate Change was crap".
    They then voted down the legislation, and then voted down the amended legislation.

    The Greens party also voted down the amended legislation because they thought it was giving too much compensation to the energy sector which is one of the largest greenhouse gas emitters, with transport coming next. It also spooked the agricultural lobby who thought they would be targeted next, though nobody seems to know what to do about them anyway.

    The government tried some tricky tactics, as consistent polling indicated that a majority of the population wanted action, and so they left the opposition to continue with their climate change denial talk, thinking the public would go against them, all it did was fragment the previous consensus and so ultimately backfired on them, leaving them with effectively no policy, since a ETS was their only real policy.

    So now the government doesn't have anywhere to go, the Greens who will most probably hold balance of power in the upper house (The Senate) after the election want a very strong policy, far stronger than what the government are prepared to do, as the government could easily loose favour with large portions of the electorate if it even looks like it would hit electricity prices, daily grocer prices or reduce jobs.

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  • 25. At 10:32am on 27 Jul 2010, peakbear wrote:

    @17. At 00:30am on 27 Jul 2010, OilfiredGreen wrote:
    "..but let's not forget that 99.9% of scientists DO accept the overwhelming evidence of AGW,"

    You can't possibly believe 1 in a 1000 dispute the evidence, I'm one of the scientists in your figure. The thing is you put about half a dozen unrelated points in, to which I generally agree with. ie real environmental issues such as continual growth, resource limits (peak oil) and environmental damage, which I think are really important. The fact you lead with something I think has really flimsy evidence ruins your important points though.

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  • 26. At 10:37am on 27 Jul 2010, polly_gone wrote:

    #3 TarquinTaylor

    Thank you for the great contribution.

    It would seem that monatomic elements evade detection in chemical analysis because they have no free valencies. It throws open an entirely new sphere of science, and, perhaps, a new understanding of the alchemist!

    Just what does this mean for climate science? It certainly begs questions of our understanding of the same.

    This site gives a good account of monatomic elements and is relatively up to date: http://www.zptech.net/science.html

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  • 27. At 12:31pm on 27 Jul 2010, oldterry2 wrote:

    in 17. OilfiredGreen wrote:

    " let's not forget that 99.9% of scientists DO accept the overwhelming evidence of AGW, and I'm sure most people (apart from perhaps the sceptics) do agree that the sun is at the centre of the solar system. "

    Er NO, I'm a physicist (so I prefer real world numbers to computer models) and I've met very few 'proper' scientists who believe CO2 causes all the warming. I'm glad you mentioned the sun though, please bear in mind that the earth has an elliptical orbit, which means that every year the earth receives 6% more energy at perihelion than it does at aphelion. So we know that all the natural climate mechanisms are capable of handling that sort of variation without any runaway effect occuring.

    Now what is the effect of CO2 warming (since 1750): its about 1% of the natural greenhouse effect (1.7W/sqm / 150 W/sqm) and 0.4% of the normal total warming (150+235 W/sqm). So we are expected to believe that this small amount of CO2 warming has some special mystical effect on the planet, despite being less than the annual variation from the sun, and smaller than the errors (uncertainties) in much of the historic measurements.

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  • 28. At 12:48pm on 27 Jul 2010, oldterry2 wrote:

    Lets just review the situation:

    a) the climate has been warming over the last century: most people would go along with that.

    b) man is having an effect on the climate: most people would agree that this may well be possible.

    c) the warming is all down to CO2. That is the point of disagreement. This effect is only true in computer models. For us real world scientists the heating effect due to the extra CO2 is too small to generate the temperature rises (unless you include some magical feedback effects which only apply to heating from the new CO2 and not the already greenhouse heating or even the heating from the existing CO2).

    back to a) this does lead to a contentious area, with the claim that it is now the warmest it has ever been. This claim is necessary for the computer models to link CO2 rises with warming. Unfortunately this claim needs to ignore archelogical evidence of earlier warmer periods. So excuse me for being somewhat suspicious of it.

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  • 29. At 2:27pm on 27 Jul 2010, Robert Lucien wrote:

    #17. At 00:30am on 27 Jul 2010, OilfiredGreen wrote:

    "The usual hardcore minority of sceptics on this site again. Because in my personal experience, the majority of people around me and in the media do share the consensus with the scientists that we are strangling the planet with global warming. Surveys and statistics aren't perfect, but let's not forget that 99.9% of scientists DO accept the overwhelming evidence of AGW, and I'm sure most people (apart from perhaps the sceptics) do agree that the sun is at the centre of the solar system."

    Ah carefully and beautifully reasoned arguments, another innocent trying to use science or reason with the pack of rabid septics thAT OCCUPY THIS SITE. Oh well you'll soon learn better. Sigh.

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  • 30. At 2:54pm on 27 Jul 2010, John_from_Hendon wrote:

    #28. oldterry2

    I would more or less go along with that (#28) with the proviso that there are a few good results from the CO2 mobs actions that we should strive to avoid being consigned to the dustbin of history.

    Examples: - We waste far too much energy through inefficiency and poor insulation - we should try harder. Heat pumps are good gadgets for heating and cooling. Efficient clean car engines in light small cars should be preferred. I like windmills and hydro schemes too. Steps should still be taken to reduce commuting distances and wasteful energy use and pollution (but obviously, not CO2 as it is not pollutant!)

    My fear is that with the death of the 'CO2 is evil mob' their demise will damage what is, and was, good (but that fear on my part is not sufficient reason to cause me to let bad science continue un-crushed).

    Summary: Don't chuck the baby out with the bathwater!

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  • 31. At 4:07pm on 27 Jul 2010, minuend wrote:


    Global Warming - Died 2010 - RIP

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  • 32. At 4:12pm on 27 Jul 2010, bowmanthebard wrote:

    OilfiredGreen #17: let's not forget that 99.9% of scientists DO accept the overwhelming evidence of AGW

    Robert Lucien #29: Ah carefully and beautifully reasoned arguments

    But where did that number come from?

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  • 33. At 6:28pm on 27 Jul 2010, MangoChutney wrote:

    Further to LabMunkey's post #23 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2010/07/turn_the_clock_back_four.html#P98769346 this is a brilliant solution to the "problem" of CO2

    Essentially, the author thinks that there is around 1/3 of the world actually believes this nonsense and suggests that this 1/3 lead the way and give up their 21st century lifestyles, so that the reduction in CO2 and reduction in global temperatures would cause the rest of us to see the error of our ways and abandon our love affair with fossil fuels.

    How about it, AGWer's care to lead the way towards the light and away from the darkness?

    /Mango

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  • 34. At 6:57pm on 27 Jul 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    29. Robert Lucien wrote:

    "the pack of rabid septics thAT OCCUPY THIS SITE."

    Funny. Sounds like the Vichy BBC... with you as some kind of heroic climate freedom fighter I suppose... and Richard trapped in a safe house, bravely sending out messages to the forces of good.

    Yet more and more of the public discourse is becoming "rabid" and 'occupied' by this sinister force. I wonder why? Could it be that the AGW cause has no credibility?

    For example, the link statement which Mango (#20) posted definitely does misrepresent the poll results ("Three out of four Americans believe that the Earth has been gradually warming as the result of human activity and want the government to institute regulations to stop it").

    There is absolutely no doubt that that is a 'misrepresentation' - to say it nicely - unless you use another method of addition.

    And compare that to the one Richard quoted:

    "Our surveys reveal a small decline in the proportion of people who believe global warming has been happening, from 84% in 2007 to 74% today..."

    Clever. The latter just says that it is happening, with no attribution of cause. The link I posted at #11 is worth looking at for some perspective on this poll.

    And once the public gets past the power of suggestion (brainwashing)created by this media-generated 'manufactured belief,' that number will drop even further.

    Here's another reason to doubt the reality of The Warming:

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/07/26/giss-swiss-cheese/

    If anybody can explain why this kind of junk is supposed to represent real science, that would be most enlightening.

    And, in a related point, nobody has answered bowmanthebard's question (#19, #32) re "let's not forget that 99.9% of scientists DO accept the overwhelming evidence of AGW."

    He asked, twice: "But where did that number come from?"

    Here's my answer. ITS JUST MORE CONVENIENT FICTION, like so much of the AGW story.

    Thus this dishonest fear-mongering project is dying its well deserved death. The sceptics are the real freedom fighters.

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  • 35. At 7:08pm on 27 Jul 2010, bowmanthebard wrote:

    #29 Robert Lucien wrote:

    the pack of rabid septics thAT OCCUPY THIS SITE

    To its great credit, the BBC still allows the free expression of opinions. If other websites did too, you might come across "rabid" expressions of scepticism more often. Don't forget that the official position of nearly all mainstream political parties and newspapers in nearly all Western countries is anti-sceptical.

    I don't think it's fair to call us "rabid", any more than it is fair to call us "deniers". Rabid dogs are literally violent and dangerous. Deniers are mostly psychotic. People you call "deniers" are very likely to be annoyed -- but that was the idea, wasn't it? And most of us are not violent or dangerous or psychotic.

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  • 36. At 8:04pm on 27 Jul 2010, Paul Kerr wrote:

    @OilfiredGreen
    99.9% getting carried away me thinks, not very scientific either. WIts easy to accept majority or consensus as a description but there are in fact plenty of sceptical scientists
    I doubt there is is anyone contributing to this blog who does not care passionately about the enviroment(and interested in sustainable solutions to enviromental problems)
    The problem with conventional global warming philosophy is that it is a huge expensive diversion that will not neccessarily reduce the damage to the enviroment we wreak as a species
    I think a lot of people confuse the mantra of AGW and decarbonisation of the global community as the holy grail of how to save the planet. Its not! its wasting billions that could usefully be spent elsewhere

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  • 37. At 8:23pm on 27 Jul 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    Oh no! More occupation of the blogosphere by the "rabid."

    "As of this writing, WUWT is ranked #6 by Alexa in the world for Environmental websites, not just climate blog sites. We are higher ranked than the Environmental Working Group, WWF, National Wildlife Federation, Mother Earth News, The Sierra Club, The Nature Conservancy and The Environmental Defense Fund."

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/07/27/step-changes-in-science-blog-climate/#more-22584

    As for Realclimate, the NASA sponsored propaganda outlet - notable for its censorship of and/or revision of inconvenient comments and the nasty and derisive replies of its operators - it is a downward hockey stick.

    The Greenpeace site does rank higher than WUWT, but then they have a massive worldwide publicity machine, an enormous budget, and cover the whole environmental spectrum.

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  • 38. At 9:03pm on 27 Jul 2010, Brunnen_G wrote:

    #17 OilfiredGreen wrote:
    The usual hardcore minority of sceptics on this site again. Because in my personal experience, the majority of people around me and in the media do share the consensus with the scientists that we are strangling the planet with global warming. Surveys and statistics aren't perfect, but let's not forget that 99.9% of scientists DO accept the overwhelming evidence of AGW

    --------------------------------------------------

    Hate to burst your bubble, but sceptics aren't the minority anymore. Neither here or in the real world.

    You can fool some of the people all of the time...

    99.9% huh? Reminds me that 74% of all statistics are made up on the spot.

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  • 39. At 9:24pm on 27 Jul 2010, Jack Hughes wrote:

    Hear the words of the eco-prophets:

    "The goal now is a socialist, redistributionist society, which is nature's proper steward and society's only hope."

    David Brower, founder of Friends of the Earth


    It's a bit scary, that.

    But then, so are these.

    "Isn't the only hope for the planet that the industrialized civilizations collapse? Isn't it our responsiblity to bring that about?"
    Maurice Strong, founder of the UN Environment Programme

    "We've got to ride this global warming issue. Even if the theory of global warming is wrong, we will be doing the right thing in terms of economic and environmental policy."
    Timothy Wirth, President of the UN Foundation

    Hat-tip to Liberal blogger Dick Puddlecote and to the Green Agenda

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  • 40. At 9:31pm on 27 Jul 2010, quake wrote:

    Re 27. oldterry2 wrote:
    "I'm glad you mentioned the sun though, please bear in mind that the earth has an elliptical orbit, which means that every year the earth receives 6% more energy at perihelion than it does at aphelion. So we know that all the natural climate mechanisms are capable of handling that sort of variation without any runaway effect occuring."

    We don't know that because the planet is never held for a long duration at perihelion or aphelion. We don't get to see the full extent of temperature change such a change in forcing would cause if maintained.

    "Now what is the effect of CO2 warming (since 1750): its about 1% of the natural greenhouse effect (1.7W/sqm / 150 W/sqm) and 0.4% of the normal total warming (150+235 W/sqm)."

    The 150wm-2 is not a radiative forcing, but a change in surface emission - therefore it cannot be compared with the 1.7wm-2 figure because the change in surface emission includes any feedbacks. Radiative forcing is a change in the energy flux at the top of the atmosphere.

    Another way of looking at it is that the 150wm-2 increase in surface emission is not the cause of the 33K increase due to the increase, but the result of it (so it's the result of the actual greenhouse forcing plus any feedbacks)

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  • 41. At 9:34pm on 27 Jul 2010, bowmanthebard wrote:

    "99.9% of scientists DO accept the overwhelming evidence of AGW"

    If no one can defend this figure, can someone from the "other side" please disown it?

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  • 42. At 9:38pm on 27 Jul 2010, quake wrote:

    Re 34. CanadianRockies wrote:

    "Here's another reason to doubt the reality of The Warming:"

    I posted a full response here:
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2010/07/un_climate_talks_mire.html#P98805713

    What I find interesting though is your use of the phrase "another reason to doubt the reality of The Warming". Don't you mean excuse?

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  • 43. At 9:40pm on 27 Jul 2010, quake wrote:

    Re 28. oldterry2 wrote:

    "c) the warming is all down to CO2. That is the point of disagreement."

    Who agrees the warming is *all* down to co2? The IPCC report doesn't.

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  • 44. At 9:55pm on 27 Jul 2010, Lorax wrote:

    #27 oldterry2 writes: Er NO, I'm a physicist... I'm glad you mentioned the sun though, please bear in mind that the earth has an elliptical orbit, which means that every year the earth receives 6% more energy at perihelion than it does at aphelion. So we know that all the natural climate mechanisms are capable of handling that sort of variation without any runaway effect occuring.'

    You are clearly not the kind of physicist who can deal with the concept of energy being stored as heat within the global climate system over cycles longer than a year. Nor the kind of physicist who has grasped that extra energy being retained within a naturally varying system does add up, and will eventually affect the dynamics of that system. So, pander to my curiosity - are you actually a physicist at all?

    #28 oldterry2 again 'the claim that it is now the warmest it has ever been. This claim is necessary for the computer models to link CO2 rises with warming. Unfortunately this claim needs to ignore archelogical evidence of earlier warmer periods. So excuse me for being somewhat suspicious of it.'

    I can put your mind to rest. Climate science does not claim that it is now the warmest it has ever been. So you can be excused for being suspicious - although not, I'm afraid, excused from needing to go away and actually read some climate science before putting up such a flimsy strawman.

    Lorax

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  • 45. At 10:09pm on 27 Jul 2010, Lorax wrote:

    Oilfiredgreen is getting duffed up for using what I suspect was an illustrative rather than literal turn of phrase '"let's not forget that 99.9% of scientists DO accept the overwhelming evidence of AGW."

    Of course, if you want the literal exact answer - you would have to go through a long exercise of defining the question, assessing those you would ask, and then analysing the answers. And that answer would be accurate only for those preconditions at the time the assessment was made. Oilfired is approximately right - there's plenty of studies of opinions and scientific papers that support the wide ranging reviews done by scientific institutions which do, as he/she puts it, accept the overwhelming evidence of AGW.

    Canadian_Rockies, who seems particularly perky today having had a good plug for catsupwiththat, was giving me grief a while ago over citing once again the unequivocal findings of the US National Academy of Sciences review published a couple of months ago. So I'd like to graciously extend to him another invitation to explain why he dismisses those findings. Because (whisper it softly) I think, really, he dismisses the findings because he doesn't like them, not because he can find any fault with the process.

    Lorax

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  • 46. At 10:17pm on 27 Jul 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    42. quake

    I just answered you back there.

    No I don't mean "excuse." I don't need one. We already walk the green walk and have since the 1970s energy crisis - in sharp contrast to the jet-setting hypocrites moaning about AGW at regular lavish conventions at lovely beach resorts.

    As for The Warming, it seems to me that the most logical explanantion for any actual warming trend which we may have seen since 1880 is the ending of the Little Ice Age.

    In any case, short term trends cannot be projected into long term predictions, as should be obvious to anyone with a clue about the roller coaster of climate history.

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  • 47. At 10:19pm on 27 Jul 2010, Robert Lucien wrote:

    #41. At 9:34pm on 27 Jul 2010, bowmanthebard wrote:

    " "99.9% of scientists DO accept the overwhelming evidence of AGW"

    If no one can defend this figure, can someone from the "other side" please disown it?
    "

    I'm not sure I would disown it bowman but it is probably an exaggeration, I would put the figure at about 95 to 99% but that is a guess based on hearsay. Scientists are such a diverse group that it would be hard to find a real or definitive answer.

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  • 48. At 11:44pm on 27 Jul 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    Well, Lorax, you wonder why I do not take pronouncements from the NAS seriously. Its simple. Because they have become an political advocacy group, with their leadership in the same league as the Union of Concerned Scientists.

    Lest we forget, they JUST published their infamous blacklist which had zero purpose except political. Did you know that that disgusting 'paper' was not peer-reviewed (for what that is worth)... because Schneider was a co-author. Did you know that anything written by a NAS member doesn' need to be peer-reviewed to be published in the PNAS? How convenient!

    "the fact that one of the five keywords or phrases attached to the new PNAS study is “climate denier” means that such divisive rhetoric is now considered to be part of our mainstream scientific lexicon by... the National Academy of Sciences."

    http://www.drroyspencer.com/2010/06/the-global-warming-inquisition-has-begun/

    Here's something issued by the NAS et al as hype for the Copenhagen debacle, back in the ancient 'debate is over' era, complete with obsolete hysteria on melting icecaps and rising sea levels and all that:

    "climate change is happening even faster than previously estimated; global CO2 emissions since 2000 have been higher than even the highest predictions, Arctic sea ice has been melting at rates much faster than predicted, and the rise in the sea level has become more rapid. Feedbacks in the climate system might lead to much more rapid climate changes.

    The need for urgent action to address climate change is now indisputable. For example, limiting global warming to 2°C would require a very rapid worldwide implementation of all currently available low carbon technologies."

    http://reason.com/blog/2009/06/11/climate-change-road-to-copenha

    ---------

    Here's how things work at that hijacked society (recall that the Royal Society had the same problem but was confonted by some of its more courageous members)

    "Yesterday, 255 members of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences - which has 2100 members in total - signed an open but originally paid letter in Science...

    Such letters usually create lots of noise but we shouldn't forget that the signatories represent just a fringe minority of the National Academy of Sciences so this letter doesn't directly imply that the whole academy is rotten."

    http://motls.blogspot.com/2010/05/twelve-percent-of-nas-establish-their.html

    P.S. This letter was published alongside the infamous fake (photoshopped) polar bear photo, adding still more 'legitimacy.'

    Here are some more links for you to ponder:

    http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2010/may/25/tax-dollars-perpetuate-global-warming-fiction/

    http://pielkeclimatesci.wordpress.com/2010/07/09/commentreply-on-the-pnas-paper-on-warming-increases-the-risk-of-civil-war-in-africa-by-burke-et-al-2010/

    I could go on, but I'm just not that "perky." I'll just let you ponder why such obviously biased politicians masquerading as scientists should be taken seriously.


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  • 49. At 00:10am on 28 Jul 2010, bowmanthebard wrote:

    quake #40 wrote:

    "We don't know that"

    Wise words, whatever they were about!

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  • 50. At 00:21am on 28 Jul 2010, davblo wrote:

    bowmanthebard #41: [re: OilfiredGreen #17: "99.9% of scientists DO accept the overwhelming evidence of AGW"] "If no one can defend this figure, can someone from the 'other side' please disown it?"

    It's a proven fact that 87.43% of statistics are wrong; so I wouldn't worry about it.

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  • 51. At 07:26am on 28 Jul 2010, polly_gone wrote:

    The more I consider these dark days for anthropogenic climate change science the more I wonder what the real driving forces were. Was it a science led political attack on fossil fuels and, if so, who was to be the beneficiary? One of my strongest feelings is it was a double bluff by pro-oil advocates, and, if so, has been hugely successful by dividing opinion, dividing advocacy, dividing remedy, and perpetuating cheaper oil for those who want it.

    Perhaps we should have a new statistic. How many scientists have been hoodwinked by a very clever adversary?

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  • 52. At 08:13am on 28 Jul 2010, blefuscu wrote:

    Global climate and temperature cycles are the result of a complex interplay between a variety of causes. Because these cycles and events overlap, sometimes compounding one another, sometimes canceling one another out, it is inaccurate to imply a statistically significant trend in climate or temperature patterns from just a few years or a few decades of data.

    Unfortunately, a lot of disinformation about where Earth's climate is heading is being propagated by "scientists" who use improper statistical methods, short-term temperature trends, or faulty computer models to make analytical and anecdotal projections about the significance of man-made influences to Earth's climate.

    In a word, POLITICS.

    "No matter if the science is all phony, there are collateral environmental benefits.... Climate change [provides] the greatest chance to bring about justice and equality in the world."

    Christine Stewart, former Minister of the Environment of Canada

    She's wrong about achieving 'justice' ie economic justice, of course, but that's what you get with ideologues. Think they have all the answers (and utilitarian morality on their side), but it is all about 'feel good' with no guarantee of success.

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  • 53. At 09:03am on 28 Jul 2010, Lorax wrote:

    #48 - from the sadly less perky Canadian Rockies

    So, from your post, I conclude that you don't accept the NAS conclusions (Climate change is occurring, is caused largely by human activities, and poses significant risks for-and in many cases is already affecting a broad range of human and natural systems) - because you disagree with other stuff they have produced. Fair enough - just as long as you aren't pretending that it is anything to do with the content or methodology of the review. In short, you know it is wrong because they are nasty people, right?

    And of course, although you have warm words for the Royal Society for conducting their own review - analogous to the NAS one - when it reports with much the same conclusions, as it will, you will dutifully pass on the catsupwiththat-scripted howls of outrage and condemn it. I guarantee it.

    Lorax

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  • 54. At 09:07am on 28 Jul 2010, bowmanthebard wrote:

    47 Robert Lucien wrote:

    I'm not sure I would disown it bowman but it is probably an exaggeration

    Do you habitually not disown claims you know are false?

    I suspect that a lot of the figures non-sceptics bandy about have a life of their own because people like you don't disown them.

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  • 55. At 09:10am on 28 Jul 2010, LabMunkey wrote:

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/07/27/the-australian-temperature-record-the-big-picture/#more-22631

    very interesting article. So 'known' areas of temperature fudge-

    -Both poles (no stations)
    -new zealand (unwarranted adjustments)
    -Large sections of australia
    -australia, see link
    - most of the oceans (land data extrapolated over large areas of the sea).

    then lump HIE on top of that. geesh.

    Just out of curiosity... where do the actually have GOOD data??

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  • 56. At 09:31am on 28 Jul 2010, bowmanthebard wrote:

    #45 Lorax wrote:

    Oilfiredgreen is getting duffed up for using what I suspect was an illustrative rather than literal turn of phrase

    But not literally "duffed up"! A falsehood was uttered, then exposed.

    Now about this 74% figure -- is that a literal claim? Or is it another falsehood to be exposed?

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  • 57. At 09:35am on 28 Jul 2010, bowmanthebard wrote:

    CanadianRockies #48 quoted:

    we shouldn't forget that the signatories represent just a fringe minority of the National Academy of Sciences so this letter doesn't directly imply that the whole academy is rotten.

    It indirectly implies it, though, doesn't it? If the rest of them don't have the guts or honesty to disown it, they're arguably even worse than the actual signatories.

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  • 58. At 10:38am on 28 Jul 2010, bowmanthebard wrote:

    The entire "moral movement" of AGW is to play fast and loose with figures of all kinds -- to tinker with them, to deliberately misinterpret them, and to sweep them under the rug of "figurative speech" when exposed.

    I'm unimpressed.

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  • 59. At 11:14am on 28 Jul 2010, LabMunkey wrote:

    @ lorax #53.

    why do you find it so hard to believe that these institutions have be hijacked be 'dirty' politics.

    The NAS 'black list' article should really tell you all you need to know.

    And yes, until someone actually BOTHERS to do a decent, thorough review of all the data i will dismiss any report that comes out. Any report that says; 'x number of scientists think this', 'it's unrecedented', 'it's worse than we thought', 'we didn't examine the science/emails' will go straight in the bin- as that's where it will belong, alongside all the other political nonesense.

    It maddens me that THIS is now the public face of science. Blacklists and pathetic 'reviews', no wonder the public no longer trust science.

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  • 60. At 12:15pm on 28 Jul 2010, bowmanthebard wrote:

    Lorax #53 wrote:

    Climate change is occurring, is caused largely by human activities, and poses significant risks for-and in many cases is already affecting a broad range of human and natural systems

    The farmer I was talking to yesterday says he doesn't notice a thing. So the effects around these parts would have to be very very subtle.

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  • 61. At 2:02pm on 28 Jul 2010, oldterry2 wrote:

    in 30. John_from_Hendon wrote:
    "Examples: - We waste far too much energy through inefficiency and poor insulation - we should try harder. Heat pumps are good gadgets for heating and cooling. Efficient clean car engines in light small cars should be preferred. I like windmills and hydro schemes too. Steps should still be taken to reduce commuting distances and wasteful energy use and pollution (but obviously, not CO2 as it is not pollutant!)

    Summary: Don't chuck the baby out with the bathwater! "

    Agreed.
    However one really difficult area that also needs addressing is improved storage of energy. There is currently no sensible way of storing large amounts of enery generated by wind, tide, or solar.

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  • 62. At 2:06pm on 28 Jul 2010, oldterry2 wrote:

    40. quake wrote in part:
    "Another way of looking at it is that the 150wm-2 increase in surface emission is not the cause of the 33K increase due to the increase, but the result of it (so it's the result of the actual greenhouse forcing plus any feedbacks)"

    So what is the total radiative forcing that is giving rise to the 33C temperature increase?

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  • 63. At 2:16pm on 28 Jul 2010, jr4412 wrote:

    re weather extremes (and they do occur, never mind what some farmer said :-)).

    "The temperature on Monday hit 37.2C, beating Moscow's previous record temperature of 36.8C from July 1920, the Moscow Weather Office said."

    "The Russian capital and much of the country from the Baltic to the Pacific coasts have been sweltering in the severest heatwave for decades which has destroyed 20 per cent of all of Russia's arable land."

    http://news.smh.com.au/breaking-news-world/moscow-wheezes-as-smog-blankets-city-20100728-10w8u.html

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  • 64. At 3:32pm on 28 Jul 2010, LabMunkey wrote:

    Just in:
    Basis for saying the recent years are the warmest on record taken from the inclusion of >80N arctic data. The data that doesn't exist

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/07/28/giss-polar-interpolation/#more-22648

    Without this purely 100% fabricated 'data' the recent years are actually cooler than reported.

    Richard and other supprters of the AGW farce- how long are you all going to hang onto the credibility of climate 'science' when this is how it is performed?? This is embarresing for science as a whole.

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  • 65. At 4:14pm on 28 Jul 2010, Arcid wrote:

    in 61 oldterry2 wrote:

    "However one really difficult area that also needs addressing is improved storage of energy. There is currently no sensible way of storing large amounts of enery generated by wind, tide, or solar. "

    There are some technologies that are being developed which have a lot of potental for storing the energy generated by the highly variable forms of power generation. For example

    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2010/05/06/german_synthetic_natural_gas/

    This one has some interesting potental, especially given the large gas infrastructure that we still have in the UK

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  • 66. At 5:31pm on 28 Jul 2010, Lorax wrote:

    #55 Labmunkey reports from catsupwiththat about:

    "'known' areas of temperature fudge-

    -Both poles (no stations)
    -new zealand (unwarranted adjustments)
    -Large sections of australia
    -australia, see link
    - most of the oceans (land data extrapolated over large areas of the sea)."

    No doubt it is all the usual wattsian crap. We specifically discussed the NZ 'unwarranted adjustments' a while ago. There is perfectly straightforward data - available in full on the web - on all the adjustments including the where, what and why. Furthermore there is a dataset from unadjusted stations which mirrors the adjusted dataset (actually, it shows a little more warming). There is no scandal from NZ on climate data.

    So why just regurgitate this nonsense? If you really wanted to claim the title of 'sceptic', then applying some scepticism to catsup's output would be something that might earn the respect of real scientists.

    Lorax

    PS Betcha the latest in LabMunkey's #64 will disappear without trace, and nobody will have the guts to say that they were taken in once again by the ex-weatherman.

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  • 67. At 5:44pm on 28 Jul 2010, MangoChutney wrote:

    @arcid #65

    looks good, regardless of whether you think fossil fuel CO2 is a problem or not - let's hope it is scaleable

    /Mango

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  • 68. At 6:15pm on 28 Jul 2010, quake wrote:

    Re 64. LabMunkey wrote:

    "Just in:
    Basis for saying the recent years are the warmest on record taken from the inclusion of >80N arctic data. The data that doesn't exist"

    This isn't just in, it's been common knowledge for years. Hansen reported this and even provided graphs of GISTEMP with and without arctic extrapolation, showing that the divergence from HadCRUT was almost entirely due to GISTEMPs use of arctic extrapolation. Perhaps if skeptics read the published papers on this matter than certain blogs they would know this.

    The anomalies (not temperatures) over the arctic are extrapolated because there are no sensors on land. The basis for such extrapolation was established by Hansen back in 1987 (I recall that date correctly). He did a study of how anomalies correlated over large distances and established some information about the validity of infilling anomalies using measured anomalies in neighbouring regions.

    By all means address that science by showing, with reference to the data, that anomalies aren't correlated over large distances as Hansen found.

    Or just settle on the fact that you don't need to rely on GISTEMPs extrapolation anyway - if you want to go without it then use HadCRUT. Because in anycase, whether the arctic is extrapolated or not, recent years are still some of the warmest on record. This is also shown in the satellite records.

    The simplified nonsense that the arctic extrapolation is "fabricated data" is just sensationalist tabloidism - an attempt to create a "story" without needing to bother delving into the actual science behind the use and validity of extrapolating anomalies.

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  • 69. At 6:20pm on 28 Jul 2010, bandythebane wrote:

    I agree with Labmonkey. The temperature data being pumped out by CRU, GISS and NOAA is no longer credible.

    I had hoped that after the Climategate fiasco, the least we could have expected was a thorough and rigorous review of it.

    If the politicians expect us to face a doubling of electricity prices and a savage reduction in our living standards on account of the AGW theory, the least we can expect is that they make sure that at least a half decent job has been done of recording the data that underpins it.

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  • 70. At 7:13pm on 28 Jul 2010, bowmanthebard wrote:

    davblo #50 wrote:

    It's a proven fact that 87.43% of statistics are wrong

    You've raised an interesting point here. I have a sneaking suspicion that vast majority of people who have "been around" a bit -- people who read newspapers, the middle aged, the calm of spirit -- think statistics is mostly a load of old cobblers. But they keep that to themselves, because it looks so rigorous, so precise, so intimidatingly technical with its heavy-duty references to "covariation", "outliers", "confidence intervals", and all that sort of hot-shot-sounding stuff.

    Be of good cheer! -- It is indeed mostly a load of old cobblers, and I'm prepared to explain exactly why.

    (Usual disclaimer: some statistical methods are fine -- in quantum theory, thermodynamics, psephology, etc.. But "most" is not the same as "some"!)

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  • 71. At 7:53pm on 28 Jul 2010, Dr Brian wrote:

    65. Arcid wrote:


    'There are some technologies that are being developed which have a lot of potential for storing the energy generated by the highly variable forms of power generation'

    Arcid.
    Just to point out that that the German process manufactures Methane, a greenhouse gas far more powerful than CO2. What chance of the Greens letting that one in?

    There is undoubtedly a need for an efficient battery that will store large amounts of electricity at times of low use. The Nobel prize awaits (if it's reputation hasn't been completely soured by Gore and Obama).

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  • 72. At 8:02pm on 28 Jul 2010, LabMunkey wrote:

    @ quake

    those extrapolations have since been shown to be utter garbage. do you think for example it is acceptable to use a station at an airfield to extrapolate the temperature for the next 1200 km of barren land?

    the records do not show the warmest on record without these extrapolations-thats the point. infact current temps are WELL below seasonal averages.

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  • 73. At 8:04pm on 28 Jul 2010, LabMunkey wrote:

    @ 66 we did indeed discuss the NZ data, and i rejected your explanation as nonesense....

    i'm sorry, you just cannot extrapolate data for 1200km of barren land.

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  • 74. At 8:39pm on 28 Jul 2010, MangoChutney wrote:

    DrBrianS #71

    Just to point out that that the German process manufactures Methane, a greenhouse gas far more powerful than CO2. What chance of the Greens letting that one in?

    The Germans have found away to create methane using electricity CO2 and water, which means:

    CO2 + 2H2O + power in = CH4 + 2O2

    Burning methane in O2 creates power out

    CH4 + 2O2 = CO2 + 2H2O + power out

    Surely if the power out exceeds power in, this is a good thing and essentially we have a closed loop, although like I said, if it's scalable

    /Mango

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  • 75. At 9:23pm on 28 Jul 2010, quake wrote:

    Re 72. LabMunkey wrote:

    "do you think for example it is acceptable to use a station at an airfield to extrapolate the temperature for the next 1200 km of barren land?"

    It's not temperature that is being extrapolated, it's the temperature anomaly. Understand that and you'll be halfway there to understanding why the complaints about extrapolation make no sense.

    "the records do not show the warmest on record without these extrapolations-thats the point."

    All global surface records extrapolate - because the entire Earth's surface is not covered with thermometers every square meter.

    If you just leave areas without data out and average the rest and report the result as a global average then you are implicitly assigning the areas without data as having the average of the rest of world.

    For example skeptics will point at HadCRUT in recent years and say it shows the Earth has not warmed. However HadCRUT omits the arctic. So by citing the HadCRUT as a global record (world hasn't warmed), skeptics are themselves implicitly extrapolating the arctic without realizing it - by assigning it the average of the rest of world.

    Skeptics have lost all credibility with their 2D simplistic arguments. Anyone who claims extrapolation of anomalies is defacto wrong or constitutes "data fabrication" is an extremist divorced from the scientific process.

    What happens in these cases is the real debate goes on as usual in the peer reviewed journals and the extremists have a long pointless debate on some blogs somewhere.

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  • 76. At 9:32pm on 28 Jul 2010, Dr Brian wrote:

    74. MangoChutneyUKOK wrote:

    'The Germans have found away to create methane using electricity CO2 and water, which means:'

    Thanks Mango, the chemistry is basic and, except for some thermodynamic energy loss, ought to release most of the power initially invested in the first reaction.

    Unfortunately loss of the gas Methane is inevitable from the manufacturing system so the idea of a Methane manufacturing plant would be guaranteed to have Swampy and his mates all over it like a bad suit.

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  • 77. At 10:42pm on 28 Jul 2010, blefuscu wrote:

    7. At 00:30am on 27 Jul 2010, OilfiredGreen wrote:

    'The usual hardcore minority of sceptics on this site again. Because in my personal experience, the majority of people around me and in the media do share the consensus with the scientists that we are strangling the planet with global warming. Surveys and statistics aren't perfect, but let's not forget that 99.9% of scientists DO accept the overwhelming evidence of AGW, and I'm sure most people (apart from perhaps the sceptics) do agree that the sun is at the centre of the solar system.'


    A number of posters have, quite rightly pointed out the flaws in the spurious reasoning of Oilfiredgreen.

    I am going to be a bit pedantic, for the hell of it.

    The Sun is NOT at the centre of the solar system. The barycenter is. The sun itself is in motion relative to the barycenter (as are the planets ans all matter in the system). This point moves depending on the position of the distributed mass of the solar system. If the planets are aligned on one side of the sun, the barycenter is some 500,000 kms above the centre of the sun.

    Small point, but significant.

    The devil, Oilfiredgreen, is in the detail, and no impassioned righteousness based on shakey premises can make it other than so.

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  • 78. At 10:53pm on 28 Jul 2010, Yorkurbantree wrote:

    RE: 54:
    "I suspect that a lot of the figures non-sceptics bandy about have a life of their own because people like you don't disown them."

    and 58:
    "The entire "moral movement" of AGW is to play fast and loose with figures of all kinds -- to tinker with them, to deliberately misinterpret them, and to sweep them under the rug of "figurative speech" when exposed."

    Nice one! Bowman wins the Pot-Kettle-Black Award for this blog article.


    Re: 60
    "The farmer I was talking to yesterday says he doesn't notice(d) a thing."

    Well, the Park Ranger I spoke to the other day said that he has. Maybe they should meet up and compare notes?

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  • 79. At 11:10pm on 28 Jul 2010, Yorkurbantree wrote:

    Re: 38 -
    "Hate to burst your bubble, but sceptics aren't the minority anymore. Neither here or in the real world."

    Sorry Brunnen but the happy 'bubble' of reality needs a bit more than your wishful thinking to burst it. Amusing you're British, you could be referring to the following possible scenarios:

    Opinion Polls?
    The most recent one I could find via google was from last month and has:
    "71% of Britons are concerned about climate change".
    So you can't be referring to that sort of thing.

    Elections?
    In the recent Genera Election there were 2 political parties standing on a 'climate change denial' platform and they won zero seats.
    So you can't be referring to that sort of thing.

    Scientific Papers?
    The vast majority being churned out still say the opposite of what you are saying.
    So you can't be referring to that sort of thing.

    Academic Institutions, Professional Bodies, Scientific Associations etc?
    As before, there still appears to be near universal agreement in the other direction from your beliefs.
    So you can't be referring to that sort of thing.

    This bog?
    I've been vaguely looking at this blog for a while and the number of sceptic posters has not increased. Some have dropped off and some new ones have appeared.
    So you can't be referring to that sort of thing.

    WUWT?
    Aha! I think I have found the source for your confidence. Reading that you would think there actually had been a shift in the real world. God love blogs - there's always one that will tell you what you want to hear!

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  • 80. At 11:33pm on 28 Jul 2010, Robert0117 wrote:

    For major issues in a Democracy. it boils down to how much change and how much are is the general public willing to pay to make X happen? If a politician/party asks for more than that amount it is quite likely they won't be around. The answer for global warming initiatives in the US right now is that the general public is not willing to pay more for energy, and they aren't willing to make significant lifestyle changes. Add on top of that a growing distrust of the ability/efficacy of the Federal Government to make changes and the various GHG bills have been dead for months.

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  • 81. At 00:46am on 29 Jul 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    #53.Lorax wrote:

    #48 Canadian Rockies

    "So, from your post, I conclude that you don't accept the NAS conclusions... because you disagree with other stuff they have produced."

    No. I don't accept that statement from them because, on this issue, their leadership has become political advocates, or shall we say missionaries, masquerading as scientists.

    So their supposed 'scientific' conclusions are too biased to be taken seriously.

    And by publishing their blacklist, and with some of the "other stuff they have produced," they demonstrate just what they have become.

    It is a sad time for science. A new Lysenko era.

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  • 82. At 01:02am on 29 Jul 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    57. bowmanthebard wrote:

    CanadianRockies #48 quoted:

    we shouldn't forget that the signatories represent just a fringe minority of the National Academy of Sciences so this letter doesn't directly imply that the whole academy is rotten.

    It indirectly implies it, though, doesn't it? If the rest of them don't have the guts or honesty to disown it, they're arguably even worse than the actual signatories.

    -----------

    Sad to say, there are plenty of 'good Germans' just staying silent so as to not disturb their careers. I know several such people personally. They have mortgages, etc., and the economy is scary, so... independent heroes defying the comforts of groupthink are a rare breed.

    On the other hand, those who take up the AGW are richly rewarded. In the field I am most familar with, the trick is to wrap AGW into any research proposal. Say you want to study some bird, or salamander, or whatever... Just make it a study of the 'effect of climate change on x and bingo!, your chances of funding just skyrocketed. And all the better if you can detect some effect, or potential effect, and you can 'monitor' what you want for a very long, lucrative, time... watching for that tipping point, or something.

    This does seem to be wearing off a bit, but very slowly, as there is now a firmly entrenched climate change research-industrial complex with its tentacles deep into all the natural sciences, and this has become one very big meal ticket for all concerned.

    And where would the newly trained hordes of 'climatologists' et al find useful employment if the 'crisis' ended?

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  • 83. At 01:07am on 29 Jul 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    63. jr4412 wrote:

    "re weather extremes...

    "The temperature on Monday hit 37.2C, beating Moscow's previous record temperature of 36.8C from July 1920, the Moscow Weather Office said."

    Yes they do occur. Its weather. Or was there Global Warming back in 1920, for a while?

    And I wonder if the physical surroundings of that thermometer has changed since 1920, or how these measurements were accurately compared. As you may or may not know, even the newspaper reports about the recent burst of record temperatures in the eastern US cities this summer were wise to the urban heat island effect and the 'effect of concrete on climate change.'

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  • 84. At 01:09am on 29 Jul 2010, bowmanthebard wrote:

    blefuscu #77 wrote:

    we are strangling the planet with global warming

    Strangling, raping, denying -- I wonder what "AGW lite" sounds like!

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  • 85. At 01:12am on 29 Jul 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    Here's a VERY interesting article about the way science is being used for social engineering, etc.

    Science Turns Authoritarian
    By Kenneth P. Green and Hiwa Alaghebandian
    Tuesday, July 27, 2010

    Science is losing its credibility because it has adopted an authoritarian tone, and has let itself be co-opted by politics.

    http://www.american.com/archive/2010/july/science-turns-authoritarian

    As a bonus, it includes a great hockey stick type graph.

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  • 86. At 01:14am on 29 Jul 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    Off topic...

    Anyone like bear attacks?

    http://www.ktvq.com/news/1-dead-2-injured-in-bear-attack-at-mt-campground1/

    Or did climate change cause it?

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  • 87. At 01:25am on 29 Jul 2010, bowmanthebard wrote:


    bowmanthebard wrote: The farmer I was talking to yesterday says he doesn't notice a thing.

    Yorkurbantree #78 wrote:

    "The farmer I was talking to yesterday says he doesn't notice(d) a thing."


    Well, the Park Ranger I spoke to the other day said that he has. Maybe they should meet up and compare notes?

    That(d) might(d) be(d) a(d) decent(d) idea(d) but(d) would(d) you(d) mind(d) quoting(d) me(d) accurately(d)? I'm fussy about quotations and numbers.

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  • 88. At 02:43am on 29 Jul 2010, jr4412 wrote:

    CanadianRockies #83.

    "Yes they do occur. Its weather. Or was there Global Warming back in 1920, for a while?"

    well, I did write weather extremes.

    global warming?? yes, I think the warming is real but, and I've said this before, I've no position on the 'anthropogenic' bit, being more concerned with the 'other' consequences of our industry (wars, poverty, discrimination, mismanagement of land and fisheries, avoidable pollution, avoidable emissions of GHGs, etc, etc).

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  • 89. At 03:55am on 29 Jul 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    #88. jr4412

    Well, I definitely agree with your priorities. We do have a shot at progress on some of them. On the bright side, we actually have made progess on many of them, more in some parts of the world than others.

    Pretty hot here today, but not like Moscow. Most of our extreme weather this year has been extreme coolness. Same basic pattern as after the last El Nino.

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  • 90. At 04:19am on 29 Jul 2010, jr4412 wrote:

    CanadianRockies #89.

    "Well, I definitely agree with your priorities ... we actually have made progess on many of them, more in some parts of the world than others."

    unfortunate then that we still (?) disagree on the need for a single, planetary society; I daresay progress on all of these issues would come easier (and would be more evenly implemented), had we a global administration.

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  • 91. At 06:07am on 29 Jul 2010, rossglory wrote:

    #85 canadianrockies

    "Here's a VERY interesting article about the way science is being used for social engineering, etc."

    give me a break. this is an article from the mouthpiece of the right wing libertarian aei and says nothing about science and everything about the political nature of the debate.

    try reading about the 40% decline in plankton due to global warming (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-10781621) and the sceptic scientists (the only part of the lobby that have any credibility at all) like prof christy accept it is at least 30% anthropogenic...and he's in a tiny minority of scientists.

    when are you guys going to wake up and smell the coffee.....oh, of course, never. eventually you will become sidelined and an irrelevance (there are even signs that the mainstream right wing establishment are starting to see agw denial as a bit of a liability) but the damage this campaign will cause is huge.......and the only achievement will be more profits for phenomenally rich corporates. well done guys.

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  • 92. At 07:16am on 29 Jul 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    #90. jr4412 wrote:

    "unfortunate then that we still (?) disagree on the need for a single, planetary society; I daresay progress on all of these issues would come easier (and would be more evenly implemented), had we a global administration."

    But what you would call a "single, planetary society" I would call a monoculture, and I prefer cultural and national diversity for the same reason as I see biodiversity to be a good thing. It is already too homogenized in my opinion.

    You also seem to have a very idealistic view of what such a thing would necessarily mean to the global serfs, ruled by that unaccountable global elite. Imagine the UN's corruption on steroids, administered by Maos in business suits, working for the benefit of global multinational corporations.

    No thanks.


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  • 93. At 07:23am on 29 Jul 2010, MangoChutney wrote:

    DrBrianS #76

    Unfortunately loss of the gas Methane is inevitable from the manufacturing system so the idea of a Methane manufacturing plant would be guaranteed to have Swampy and his mates all over it like a bad suit.

    Most manufacturing has environmental problems, including "renewables". If this system is able to store energy produced from solar, tidal etc then it should be considered as an option - oil etc will run out eventually, so developing viable, reliable options is a must

    At this moment in time, I think we should applaud the Germans

    /Mango


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  • 94. At 07:24am on 29 Jul 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    91. rossglory wrote:

    "#85 canadianrockies

    "Here's a VERY interesting article about the way science is being used for social engineering, etc."

    give me a break. this is an article... says nothing about science and everything about the political nature of the debate.

    --------------

    Well, yes. That is why I wrote: "Here's a VERY interesting article about the way science is being used for social engineering, etc."

    Science says you must read the words to understand the sentence.


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  • 95. At 08:41am on 29 Jul 2010, bowmanthebard wrote:

    rossglory #91 wrote:

    says nothing about science

    I agree. Anyone who wants to be obeyed rather than believed cannot be called a scientist. We are talking about priests again.

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  • 96. At 10:25am on 29 Jul 2010, LabMunkey wrote:

    quake @ 75

    "It's not temperature that is being extrapolated, it's the temperature anomaly. Understand that and you'll be halfway there to understanding why the complaints about extrapolation make no sense."

    -Correct me if i'm wrong- but the anomoly is the temperature variance from an 'arbitrary' start point. Is that correct? hence we see anomalies such as .01 .02 -.01 .4 etc etc.

    So they don't actually have data for that region. So how can they possible extrapolate the anomaly? Short answer- is they can't. It's pure guess work.

    "All global surface records extrapolate - because the entire Earth's surface is not covered with thermometers every square meter.

    If you just leave areas without data out and average the rest and report the result as a global average then you are implicitly assigning the areas without data as having the average of the rest of world."

    -And herein lies the crux of the problem. We don't even know HOW to accuratley depict a global mean temperature (especially as we don't understand the climate), so these 'extrapolations' are almost certainly contaminated by a staggeringly high level of personal bias.

    "For example skeptics will point at HadCRUT in recent years and say it shows the Earth has not warmed. However HadCRUT omits the arctic. So by citing the HadCRUT as a global record (world hasn't warmed), skeptics are themselves implicitly extrapolating the arctic without realizing it - by assigning it the average of the rest of world."

    Now this is actually a REALLY interesting point which i'd love to debate with you further if you're game (so to speak!). We cannot extrapolate data for the arctic without actually having stations there. regardless of whether it is data, or anomalies (based on data- so how the hell can they extraploate that with no data?!?!? it's even worse!!). So, yes, by omitting the arctic we show the world hasn't warmed.

    But, as you rightly point out- this is not saying the world hasn't actually warmed- only that we don't have the data to support that assertion.

    For the record- i do think on the current balance of evidence that the world has warmed, just not as much as has been reported, and not recently.

    But this leaves us with a catch 22. We cannot say that the world has warmed without the extrapolations (read- complete guesses), but again as you rightly point out- omitting the arctic although showing no warming- doesn't prove it.

    So- from this we can take two 'routes' as it were.

    route 1- accept the data show's no warming, also accepting that the data we have doesn't give an accurate picture of global temperatures (with it's own problems for the AGW movement) Or..

    Route 2- we 'extrapolate' the data to match our pre-conceived conclusions. Which is what they've done- there is literally no way you can defend this- whilst maintaining your 'integrity' as someone who actually cares over the science. They, in short, guessed.

    "Skeptics have lost all credibility with their 2D simplistic arguments. Anyone who claims extrapolation of anomalies is defacto wrong or constitutes "data fabrication" is an extremist divorced from the scientific process."

    No- anyone who claims extrapolation of anomolous data is wrong is meerly questioning the scientific process of the AGW scientists. As i see it, and MANY other skeptics see it, they are importing their own ideas onto the data grid.

    I repeat- there is NO DATA for the areas they put as the warmest on record. None. Zero. This is irrefutable.

    "What happens in these cases is the real debate goes on as usual in the peer reviewed journals and the extremists have a long pointless debate on some blogs somewhere."

    But people are begining to publishing on this? Don't you see- this is all starting to unravel. The FOI's are now getting answered (drip by drip, section by section). People are now in a position where they can actually check the data, the conclusions, the work- and there are errors and massive assumptive problems littered throughout the body of work.

    You seem to be under the mistaken assumption that all this information was already freely available, and that the methods, programs and data series were all published. They were not. It has taken countless FOI actions, court decisions and tremendous pressure to even get to where we are now.

    Not the conduct of honest scientists.

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  • 97. At 11:19am on 29 Jul 2010, Paul Kerr wrote:

    Excellent post LabMunkey

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  • 98. At 11:20am on 29 Jul 2010, jon112dk wrote:

    Do 74% believe the whole package? -

    1) Earth is warming
    2) Humans are causing it
    3) An end to modern civilisation is the cure

    The people at Stanford will have decided the wording of the qusetions and who got asked. Who paid for the work by Stanford? Obama?



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  • 99. At 11:50am on 29 Jul 2010, LabMunkey wrote:

    further my post at # 96.

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/07/28/giss-arctic-vs-dmi-arctic-differences-in-method/#more-22670

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  • 100. At 12:51pm on 29 Jul 2010, bowmanthebard wrote:

    quake #75 wrote:

    Skeptics have lost all credibility with their 2D simplistic arguments. Anyone who claims extrapolation of anomalies is defacto wrong or constitutes "data fabrication" is an extremist divorced from the scientific process.

    I like simplistic arguments, because they're easy to follow.

    It is OK to extrapolate from "the emeralds I've seen so far have been green" to "all emeralds are green", but when we extrapolate from "the swans I've seen so far have been white" to "all swans are white", we make a mistake. -- Why is this?

    The answer is that what makes something an emerald also makes it green. In other words, there is a lawlike connection between being an emerald and being green. But there is no such connection between being a swan and being white. It is a mere "accident" that the swans around here happen to be white, and we cannot reliably extrapolate from that. It's not lawlike. Yeah -- it's "anomalous"!

    Now, where the temperature is normal or average, we might say it is behaving in a lawlike way. But when it is hotter or colder than average, it is departing from the norm, and so by definition it is behaving in a non-lawlike way.

    Extrapolations from such things are not to be trusted! Just take a simple example to illustrate. Suppose there is an unusually high frequency of meteorites somewhere. Is it acceptable to extrapolate that unusually high frequency of meteorites to places that we haven't checked? -- Of course not!

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  • 101. At 12:58pm on 29 Jul 2010, jr4412 wrote:

    CanadianRockies #92.

    "..a monoculture, and I prefer cultural and national diversity for the same reason as I see biodiversity to be a good thing."

    cultural diversity, yes, national, no! take the UK as an example, England has been a single political entity for well over 1,000 years and yet, when you speak to people, they identify themselves as Geordies, Scousers, etc; there are still significant differences (cultural and otherwise) after all that time.

    "You also seem to have a very idealistic view of what such a thing would necessarily mean to the global serfs, ruled by that unaccountable global elite. Imagine the UN's corruption on steroids, administered by Maos in business suits, working for the benefit of global multinational corporations."

    one 'master' instead of hundreds?? what's the difference? frankly, each and every one of us must act responsibly and on principle; every individual is responsible to deny the "Maos in business suits" their claim of legitimacy, as best we can.

    I am an idealist, yes, and I have a conscience (which, I admit, is a problem).

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  • 102. At 1:28pm on 29 Jul 2010, LabMunkey wrote:

    @ 100, bowmnad
    "Extrapolations from such things are not to be trusted! Just take a simple example to illustrate. Suppose there is an unusually high frequency of meteorites somewhere. Is it acceptable to extrapolate that unusually high frequency of meteorites to places that we haven't checked? -- Of course not!"

    You put it better than i could, sir.

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  • 103. At 1:53pm on 29 Jul 2010, bowmanthebard wrote:

    Lateral thinking puzzle:

    A man wakes up on morning, looks out of the bedroom window at his brand-new car, sees that it is completely destroyed, and shouts "Yippee! What a wonderful thing to happen!"

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  • 104. At 3:09pm on 29 Jul 2010, Barry Woods wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 105. At 7:42pm on 29 Jul 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    #101. jr4412 wrote:

    "one 'master' instead of hundreds?? what's the difference? frankly, each and every one of us must act responsibly and on principle; every individual is responsible to deny the "Maos in business suits" their claim of legitimacy, as best we can."

    I am an idealist, yes..."

    Yes, you definitely are an idealist, but you don't seem to understand basic human nature or the role of what's left of democracy. How exactly can individuals "deny" the "legitimacy" of their "masters" in a global serfdom? How is that working out for the EU, for starters?

    I prefer the Swiss model. Maximum local democracy. And that only works because it is one a small scale, where the individual is not lost in the global sheep herd you seem to wish for.

    The real problem with your vision is that you must presume that these "masters" would know what is "best" for the whole world, and would actually do what is best for the serfs instead of what is best for themselves. That is very, very naive.





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  • 106. At 7:53pm on 29 Jul 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    103. bowmanthebard wrote:

    "Lateral thinking puzzle:

    A man wakes up on morning, looks out of the bedroom window at his brand-new car, sees that it is completely destroyed, and shouts "Yippee! What a wonderful thing to happen!"

    Well, of course. Future CO2 emissions have been reduced. Unless he buys a new car. And if you don't count the CO2 emissions involved in manufacturing the wrecked car plus the new one.

    Or, when he does buy a new car, jobs are created, the official GDP statistics rise, and the economy looks so much better.

    Plus the wrecked car can be shipped to China - preferably by sailboat - where most of the materials can be recycled - preferably by wind or solar powered industry - and they can make more cheap junk for everyone to buy - shipped back preferably by sailboat - further enriching the global economy and raising the retail consumer stats.

    So, if you think 'correctly' and selectively, both the planet and the economy is saved. Its all good.

    Yippee! Let's wreck more cars and stuff!

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  • 107. At 7:59pm on 29 Jul 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    96. LabMunkey wrote:

    "quake @ 75"

    Good post. In discussing this on another thread here, I suggested to quake that he join the comments at WUWT to test his arguments. You would make a great contributor there too.

    This comment by you pretty much sums it up:

    "So they don't actually have data for that region. So how can they possible extrapolate the anomaly? Short answer- is they can't. It's pure guess work."

    Of course, it does come from an 'official' source, and no doubt these guesses have been rigorously reviewed, and its just a coincidence that they all point to the desired result.

    The emporer does have clothes. Really.

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  • 108. At 8:15pm on 29 Jul 2010, jr4412 wrote:

    CanadianRockies #105.

    "I prefer the Swiss model. Maximum local democracy. And that only works because it is one a small scale, where the individual is not lost in the global sheep herd you seem to wish for."

    I do too, but I disagree when you say that it wouldn't scale up; the main advantage is the three tier structure, all you'd need to do is to replace 'federal' with 'global' (provided a basic human rights statement is in place to apply equally, everywhere).

    "The real problem with your vision is that you must presume that these "masters" would know what is "best" for the whole world.."

    nope, the global level is simply administrative, ie allocating scarce resouces without favour, allocating our precious SSNs, etc.

    anyway, I suppose we'll never agree on this particular point..

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  • 109. At 8:49pm on 29 Jul 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    108. jr4412 wrote:

    "the global level is simply administrative, ie allocating scarce resouces without favour"

    Sorry, but this just illustrates your naivety. On what planet do humans or any species ever allocate anything without favour? Its just the opposite, always. Its called evolution, and its about competition for survival.

    I suggest you read Orwell's 'Animal Farm,' or simply look at the real world.

    "anyway, I suppose we'll never agree on this particular point.."

    No doubt about that. But, almost certainly due to our differing backgrounds, that is the way it goes.

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  • 110. At 9:22pm on 29 Jul 2010, GeoffWard wrote:

    .
    I invite you to visualize a climatic state (regional or global) as conceptually similar to an ecological niche – an island of ‘relative stability’ - a locatable volume within a multidimensional hyperspace. In ecological niches the location within the complex of dimensions determines the region of habitation/habitability for a unique aggregation of species.
    .
    Imagined in three dimensions only, this would appear like a hilly landscape with each hill uniquely populated by a unique community. When a resource or other feature necessary for survival declines/increases beyond the envelope of survival, species will, through evolution and adaption/adaptation, vacate the niche or die out. Those vacating must attach themselves to another ‘hill’ (niche), setting up new – perhaps never before seen – battles of tooth and claw. The movement between niches may be fast (eg pollution-induced) or slow (eg responding to geological rates of change), but the instability of conditions defined by the ‘valleys’ surrounding niche ‘hills’ makes them largely uninhabitable.
    .
    On our global scale, our ONE hill is the earth, and we are just one of the species on our hill (the earth-niche). We all evolved within our species-survival-envelopes on this one hill and, when (climatic, anthropogenic, etc) changes happen, it stretches the survival possibilities of some species more than others. We are presently going through one of the world’s greatest species-extinctions. In this post-glacial period of relative stability, these are ALL anthropogenic extinctions.
    .
    What sort of change in the world-survival-envelope would threaten the existence of the human species? Arguably, beyond all other species on earth, we are uniquely evolved and technologically adapted for survival. The human species could survive, in theory, anywhere on the surface of the earth, albeit with great difficulty in some climes; but it is this condition we are challenging – whether the genes of the species can survive whatever (climate-) change throws at us.
    .
    Chaos Theory is so much more examinable these days, with distributed (parallel) memory computing. The likes of the Intel Paragon XP/S 150 can solve a single complex problem using the combined speed of 2048 processors, and I’m sure other distributed systems can do even more today - given the funding for this area of investigation. Climate change is a complex problem (climate stability is bad enough, but there is abundant evidence that it does not exist on this planet).
    .
    We have framed the many blog-arguments on this site at an extremely simple level – CO2 leads to warming and, God knows, there are many more arguments around this simple link if we involve anthropogenic influencers.
    But the Game is much bigger and much more intractable than this. We are surrounded by strange attractors (and I’m not talking about Carla Bruni). These define the ‘niches’ towards which regional and global climate tend. At the most simplistic level, these are a hot niche and a cold niche. And we arrive at either state by the serendipity of the Butterfly – the many thousands of forcing factors that push & pull and switch on and off (analogous to genes).
    .
    It’s a mixed bag: some of these factors are ‘bloody big’, like the ocean conveyors; some are tiny, like CFCs; some are virtually unstudied (?) like the influence of stratospheric jet-streams on Polar Oscillations (SAM & Arctic), - but all have the potential to amplify (or dampen), to be amplified (or be dampened) in the circumstances of the moment [There are 360o of ways to fall off the hill in this 3D analogy; many more in the real world]. Frequently it is the knock-on effects of the knock-on effects of the initial forcing factor that creates the first-observed (and measurable) effect; sometimes it’s an intermediate effect that is noted first; very occasionally we will ‘guess’ correctly which is the Primary Influencer.
    .
    In this sense it is the role of the world’s scientists, technologists, mathematicians, statisticians, modelers, communicators, sceptics, etc., to be humble enough to understand the strengths and limitations of each other’s contribution to a better understanding of God’s global joke (voice of Brian Blessed) – “Humans, try to understand yourself in your environment – I give you one hill and one hill only”. It is so easy to fall down the hill; it is IMPOSSIBLE to climb it again, because it will have mutated to another circumstance, possibly (probably?) on the outside the survival-envelope of the human species.
    .

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  • 111. At 9:32pm on 29 Jul 2010, jr4412 wrote:

    CanadianRockies #109.

    "On what planet do humans or any species ever allocate anything without favour? Its just the opposite, always. Its called evolution, and its about competition for survival."

    and if we (humans) didn't claim the moniker 'sapiens', I'd agree. however, since we claim to be more evolved than 'mere' animals, I should have thought overcoming our instincts would be desirable and doable. apparently not.

    "I suggest you read Orwell's 'Animal Farm'.."

    while I haven't read Orwell (tried, hate the style), I am familiar with the story (saw an excellent animated version).

    "..certainly due to our differing backgrounds.."

    yes, which is why I disagree with you on allocating "anything without favour" -- very young children can do it, all we have to do is unlearn giving in to our (excacerbated by learning) selfishness.

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  • 112. At 9:50pm on 29 Jul 2010, bowmanthebard wrote:

    #106 CanadianRockies wrote:

    So, if you think 'correctly' and selectively, both the planet and the economy is saved.

    In the original puzzle, the man sees that his car has been destroyed by a meteorite, which is worth more than its own weight in gold. Plus he can sell the wrecked car to a museum. Yours sends a better message!

    I've been thinking about meteorites a lot lately because some guy in Bosnia claims his house has been hit on five or six separate occasions by meteorites.

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  • 113. At 11:41pm on 29 Jul 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    111. jr4412 wrote:

    "if we (humans) didn't claim the moniker 'sapiens', I'd agree. however, since we claim to be more evolved than 'mere' animals, I should have thought overcoming our instincts would be desirable and doable. apparently not."

    Well, yes we do CLAIM to be sapiens but we are just naked apes with a little extra thinking power. Personally I do not see "'mere' animals" but merely different ones. While overcoming SOME of our instincts may be desirable, I do not believe it is doable... although modern pharmaceuticals and TV brainwashing do seem to have some effect.

    In any case, the global elite which you seem to wish for plays directly on our instincts, notably fear and greed, with great success.

    "yes, which is why I disagree with you on allocating "anything without favour" -- very young children can do it, all we have to do is unlearn giving in to our (excacerbated by learning) selfishness."

    Wow. I'm not familiar with those saintly selfless children. Just the opposite.

    Selfishness, despite all our social brainwashing, is the driver of evolution. People, and other species, are selfish about the survival and well-being of themselves. There is a book called 'The Selfish Gene' which goes into this inconvenient truth in detail but I cannot recall the author off the top of my head.

    That said, for social animals like ourselves, selfishness is moderated to some degree in the interests of the group, at least by some people.

    So, sorry jr4412, while I do appreciate your idealism, I am far too stuck in reality to imagine that we naked apes can suddenly become the rational far-thinking selfless saints you wish we were.

    P.S. If you had my address, would you allocate me a $1000 without favour?

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  • 114. At 11:41pm on 29 Jul 2010, Yorkurbantree wrote:

    Re: 87 - Oh dear. Epic fail on my part there. Just as well i'm not a climate scientist because by now there would be an article on WUWT headlined: "Climate Science In Meltdown Over Monumental Error That Destroys The Credibility Of All So Called 'Scientists'"

    Your spelling and grammar are excellent, which reflects very well on the British educational establishment. Sad then, that you use said talents to write such 'eccentric' ideas on science and RE, which rather undermines the former achievements...

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  • 115. At 00:02am on 30 Jul 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    112. bowmanthebard wrote:

    "I've been thinking about meteorites a lot lately because some guy in Bosnia claims his house has been hit on five or six separate occasions by meteorites."

    Hmmm. Serbian meteorites? Or does he have meteorite damage insurance?

    I did see something recently about somebody finding one on their land, and it was worth a fortune. And - I know this will sound far fetched - but a friend of a friend of mine was driving down the road in northern Alberta and a tiny one came right through his car roof like a bullet - at least that was the only logical explanation for what happened. It kept going right through the car floorboards.

    What fate. Just over a few inches and it would have killed him! But no such luck on recovering anything, it wouldn't be worth much in any case, and the car insurance costs were minimal.

    I suppose it could have been a bit of falling space junk or a bolt from an airplane (though few or no airplanes over where he was) but I like the meteorite explanation. They have to fall somewhere.

    We live way out in the country, far from any light pollution, and it is marvellous to see them streaking across the night sky. It is also amazing how many satellites there are.

    Which reminds me. When those people in the Middle East go wild and shoot their guns into the air, where do all those bullets land?

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  • 116. At 10:12am on 30 Jul 2010, Dr Brian wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 117. At 10:12am on 31 Jul 2010, bowmanthebard wrote:

    The genes of living things are "selfish" -- perhaps a better word is 'nepotistic' -- but that helps to explain altruism at the level of organisms. However, it does suggest that we can only be altruistic towards kin. It also allows for so-called "reciprocal altruism", but that hardly deserves the name 'altruism' at all -- it's more of a "risky exchange of favours", in which you scratch someone else's back in the hope that he'll scratch yours in return.

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  • 118. At 7:44pm on 31 Jul 2010, oldterry2 wrote:

    in 65 Arcid wrote:
    " There are some technologies that are being developed which have a lot of potental for storing the energy generated by the highly variable forms of power generation. For example http://www.theregister.co.uk/2010/05/06/german_synthetic_natural_gas/ This one has some interesting potental, especially given the large gas infrastructure that we still have in the UK "

    Agreed, CH4 synthesis is a starting point, and the gas infrastructure can be used. However this provides energy transfer (itself a good thing) but not energy storage. For that we need to add more carbon and hydrogen atoms, sufficient that the molecules form a liquid at room temperatures.

    (a side point - apologies for the delay in replying - been away - will catch up soon, hopefully)

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  • 119. At 7:48pm on 31 Jul 2010, oldterry2 wrote:

    in 43. quake wrote:
    "Who agrees the warming is *all* down to co2? The IPCC report doesn't."

    Actually it does - it looks at all the factors and concludes that all the rest cancel out numerically, leaving the net radiative forcing as the CO2 value. I suggest you re-read chapter2.

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  • 120. At 9:19pm on 31 Jul 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    #117. bowmanthebard wrote:

    "However, it does suggest that we can only be altruistic towards kin."

    Yes it does, although for we humans "kin" has been expanded to another level, social groupings based on religions or nations.

    Thus the cannon fodder dies 'for their country' and the Jihadists die 'for their religion,' etc.

    Genetic-based evolution is much slower than learning-based evolution.

    Now the globalists are trying to create a global "kin" level, with the idea of one humanity on one planet - which actually is true on the macro level. Thus they desperately need global crises - like AGW - to unite all people in an 'us v them' groupthink dynamic, so that the "little people" can become altruistic while the "big people" exploit them as usual.

    Ever notice how rarely the "big people" are altruistic?


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  • 121. At 10:57pm on 31 Jul 2010, oldterry2 wrote:

    in 44 Lorax wrote:
    "I can put your mind to rest. Climate science does not claim that it is now the warmest it has ever been. "

    Hmmm, I was talking in the context of climate modelling. Now the IPCC report says that the current temperature is the warmest it has been for the last 500 years, and the models don't even go that far back.

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  • 122. At 11:15pm on 31 Jul 2010, oldterry2 wrote:

    in 40. quake wrote:
    "We don't know that because the planet is never held for a long duration at perihelion or aphelion. We don't get to see the full extent of temperature change such a change in forcing would cause if maintained."

    you are missing the point - I am saying that the normal annual energy variation is wider than the increase due to CO2.

    quake also wrote
    "The 150wm-2 is not a radiative forcing, but a change in surface emission - therefore it cannot be compared with the 1.7wm-2 figure because the change in surface emission includes any feedbacks. Radiative forcing is a change in the energy flux at the top of the atmosphere."

    But in order for the surface to be in equilibrium (at the +33C) it must be absorbing energy at the same rate (150w/sqm). You also seem to be assuming that the CO2 forcing is occuring at the top of the atmosphere - it will be happening where CO2 is located throughout the atmosphere. Now as CO2 is denser than most of the gases in the atmosphere, it will predominently occur low in the atmosphere. So you can compare the CO2 forcing value directly with the surface absorbtion.

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  • 123. At 11:20pm on 31 Jul 2010, oldterry2 wrote:

    in Lorax wrote:
    " So, pander to my curiosity - are you actually a physicist at all?"

    Yes; even got a doctrate in the subject, albeit at at time where we were taught that in a conflict between measurements and models - the raw measurements always win.

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  • 124. At 6:47pm on 01 Aug 2010, HungeryWalleye wrote:

    113. At 11:41pm on 29 Jul 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    "There is a book called 'The Selfish Gene' which goes into this inconvenient truth in detail but I cannot recall the author off the top of my head."

    The name you are looking for is Richard Dawkins. His web site is:

    http://richarddawkins.net/

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  • 125. At 05:19am on 02 Aug 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    124. HungeryWalleye

    Thanks for that info.

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