BBC BLOGS - Richard Black's Earth Watch
IN ASSOCIATION WITH
« Previous | Main | Next »

'Terrific ten' given days to save the world

Richard Black | 17:55 UK time, Tuesday, 7 December 2010

From the UN climate summit in Cancun, Mexico.

Enid Blyton had five (and then seven) - Ocean had 11 (and then 12).

Mexican Foreign Minister Patricia Espinosa, president of the UN climate summit here, has gone for 10 - 10 people who have just three days to save the planet.

UK Energy and Climate Change Secretary of State Chris Huhne

UK Energy and Climate Change Secretary of State Chris Huhne

OK, that's a bit of hyperbole - the planet itself is going to be fine, whatever holds for life on it - but there's no doubt that the task Ms Espinosa has handed to 10 ministers here is a tough one.

In five pairs - developing country paired with rich world counterpart - the ministers have been charged with finding compromise routes through the trickiest areas of negotiation.

Sweden and Grenada are looking at the shared vision - the over-arching description of what countries want this process to achieve. Currently there are at least three distinguishable visions - arguably many more - held by different groups of countries.

Spain and Algeria will discuss adaptation, while Australia and Bangladesh have finance, technology and capacity building.

Taken together, these areas really deal with how rich countries help poorer ones to deal with climate change - adapting to impacts, and developing along "clean" lines - as they are obliged to do under the climate convention.

When it comes to cutting carbon, New Zealand and Indonesia get to deal with the big picture - developing countries, the US, the long-term goals - while the UK and Brazil have secured possibly the thorniest of issues, the future of the Kyoto Protocol.

Japan said definitively at the beginning of this conference that they would not accept further emission cuts under the protocol; developing countries demand that it continues.

You might ask why they're so insistent on the protocol - why should the vehicle chosen for the West's carbon cuts matter, so long as the cuts are big enough?

In part it's because of the protocol's legally-binding character, in part because it contains procedures to channel support to developing countries, and partly because they figured that rich countries promised, so they should keep their promise.

So the UK's Chris Huhne - barely six months into his term of office as UK climate and energy secretary - and Brazil's Environment Minister Izabella Teixeira have to find a way between the archetypal Scylla and Charybdis.

Brazil's Environment Minister Izabella Teixeira

Brazil's Environment Minister Izabella Teixeira

The pairs of ministers are holding meetings with key countries, and are supposed to report back to the Mexican chairs early on Wednesday.

Mr Huhne and Ms Teixiera have so far talked to Japan, the G77 group of developing countries, Australia, the African group. Talks are set with Russia, Canada, the small island states; there'll also be a free-for all session where anyone can come and pitch in their ideas.

Japan, reportedly, was "robust" - when you've come out with such a strong statement as they have, it's not easy to pull back without a great deal being promised in return.

For all 10 ministers, this is a painstaking job. But Mr Huhne outlined the importance of getting the fundementals sorted here, before he and others begin the big push for a legally-binding deal next year.

"You can't expect to have an 'instant coffee' solution - just add hot water and you've got a climate change treaty," he told reporters.

What we have is more of a sushi preparation scenario - a slice of fish here, a smattering of wasabi, a substantive lump of rice folded into a tasty envelope of tofu - specialist work indeed.

Luckily, the 10 ministers have legal teams to help them - people who are adept at melting and casting and re-melting and re-casting language until it takes on a form in which all parties can see beauty.

And it's probably no exaggeration to say that on their capacity to do so, plus the personal chemistry ministers manage to generate with sometimes aggrieved and sometimes belligerent delegates, hangs the the success or failure of Cancun.

 

Comments

or register to comment.

  • 1. At 7:06pm on 07 Dec 2010, bowmanthebard wrote:

    It seems to me that a lot of this has to do with breaking promises. Promises were made, but times changed, and now people want to go back on the promises that were made.

    A lot like a marriage breaking up, I suppose!

    So: it is better to keep promises no matter what, or try to keep them as best we can, but take account of circumstances?

    Complain about this comment

  • 2. At 7:29pm on 07 Dec 2010, BluesBerry wrote:

    I think a large part of the problem here is that no one knows the real problem. There's been so much written about climate change - some even from scientists who somehow manage to contradict each other.
    It's like being asked to write on essay on Christopher Colombus' discovery of America when you know darn well that he didn't discover it! How can you put your passion into that.
    "There'll also be a free-for all session where anyone can come and pitch in their ideas." Does that sound like everyone is on the same page, knows what the problem is and is therefore prepared to offer meaningful recommendations?
    For all 10 ministers, this is a painstaking job, as it would be for me until and unless I knew what the real problem was.
    But Mr Huhne outlined the importance of getting the fundamentals sorted here, before he and others can even think about the so-called big push for a legally-binding agreement next year.
    I see nothing but failure for Cancun because the problem is not clearly defined - after all these years, the problem is NOT clearly defined.
    I think the best things that should come out of Cancun are:
    1. throw out all the politicians or other non experts
    2. call a special meeting to occur ASAP of professional climatologists with at least five years experience in climate change
    3. let these professionals define the problem, even down to the question: is the climate truly warming, or are we experiencing a standard werather pattern that occurs say every 100,000 years?

    Complain about this comment

  • 3. At 7:29pm on 07 Dec 2010, John_from_Hendon wrote:

    The 'blame it on man made CO2' idea has been seen though - it was always more a product of the religious idea of original sin than of science.

    The way froward to to convert the concern for the planet into actually doing some good that benefits the poor. Preventing the worst effects of adverse climate events needs to become to focus - which I am very glad to say appears to be the case. Short of solar flux 'valves' in space there really isn't much we can do that will be effective (from my perspective of the proven most probably 'cause' of climate variability.)

    So what we need to concentrate upon is amelioration, including trying our best to limit the planet's human population to reduce pressure on our limited resources and of course to look at more equitable ways to share what we have.

    Complain about this comment

  • 4. At 7:36pm on 07 Dec 2010, bowmanthebard wrote:

    there'll also be a free-for all session where anyone can come and pitch in their ideas

    I'd be delighted to, and thanks for the invitation! All I need is a ticket and a hotel reservation!

    Complain about this comment

  • 5. At 7:52pm on 07 Dec 2010, John_from_Hendon wrote:

    #4. bowmanthebard wrote:

    "there'll also be a free-for all session where anyone can come and pitch in their ideas

    I'd be delighted to, and thanks for the invitation! All I need is a ticket and a hotel reservation!"

    ditto and of course the time to waste!

    Complain about this comment

  • 6. At 8:16pm on 07 Dec 2010, Jack Hughes wrote:

    Richard, as an altar-boy of the green religion how do you justify flying to Mexico?

    Complain about this comment

  • 7. At 8:17pm on 07 Dec 2010, MangoChutney wrote:

    BS

    /Mango

    Complain about this comment

  • 8. At 8:23pm on 07 Dec 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    #2. Fear not Bluesberry, Sweden and Grenada will get that all sorted out after lunch. Simple as putting together IKEA furniture.

    Spain and Algeria will discuss adaptation, with Spain bringing their expertise in solar-powered economic boondoggles and Algeria emphasizing human rights.

    Australia and Bangladesh have finance, technology and capacity building, led by the latter's expertise in those fields.

    More hope emerges when we read that "When it comes to cutting carbon, New Zealand and Indonesia get to deal with the big picture - developing countries, the US, the long-term goals."

    Perhaps the New Zealand delegation will include such experts as this one, just to help smooth out American feelings:

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/12/06/cfacts-kook-of-the-week-at-cancun/

    And Indonesia will, I'm sure, offer to cut back on their oil production to help the cause and, if paid enough again, promise not to cut down too many more rain forests for a year or two.

    Finally, we have the real planet savers, the UK and Brazil, charged with rescuing the Kyoto Protocol.

    It appears that the UK's best hope will be to employ the methods of Monty Python's 'dead parrot' skit while reminding everyone of their own economic suicide plans. Brazil, now led by an avowed Marxist PM, will explain that they really, really, really need the Kyoto cash to develop their off-shore oil fields and cut down more rain forests to grow biofuels.

    What could possibly go wrong?









    Complain about this comment

  • 9. At 10:10pm on 07 Dec 2010, Cariboo wrote:

    When your house burning you fight the fire, an all expenses paid knees up is not on the agenda.

    Complain about this comment

  • 10. At 10:25pm on 07 Dec 2010, Cariboo wrote:

    This is a bit of topic but it is to do with environmental concerns. I had originally intended to send Richard an email about this but alas, I could not find his email address.

    I have just watched a BBC documentary “Future of Food”. Towards the end of the third and last part of the series there is a segment on a scientist trying to genetically modify wheat to have the nitrogen fixing bacterial nodules of the pea plant. I was somewhat taken aback as I think it is a stupid waste of talent, money and time, when with a little research the old low tech solution is at hand. The old solution was to sow clover with the wheat, barley, oats or rye. Clover having the same nitrogen fixing bacterial nodules. The clover gets going well but gets overtaken and held in check by the grain crop. The clover adds nitrogen to the soil via the bacterial nodules that fertilizes the grain crop. The clover also inhibits the growth of weeds as it is covering the ground. When the grain crop is harvested the clover now gets the full benefit of the sun and has a growth spurt. After a couple of weeks cows or sheep can have a good highly nutritious feed on clover. Just by sowing clover with the grain you get nitrogen fertilization, weed control and a good feed for the cows/sheep. My grandfather did this all the time, it was common farming practice.

    I have to wonder how much time, effort and money is being spent on hi tech solution for problems that were solved years ago. Perhaps science would be well advised to research old solutions to problems rather than rather than embark on wheel invention sojourns. Then again the current farmers should ask questions of the old timers rather than listening to scholarly experts.

    Complain about this comment

  • 11. At 10:48pm on 07 Dec 2010, LarryKealey wrote:



    Nothing will come of this. Mexico is where UN resolutions go to die...

    Many promises have been made - many by people who did not have the authority to make those promises. Promises also made

    Any treaty into which the US enters, must be ratified by the U.S. Senate - and with the landslide mid-term elections we just had here in the US, I just don't see that happening. Thank goodness. We won't see cap 'n trade, nor will we see lunatic energy policy...hopefully a reversal of all the subsidies for biofuels - most of which goes to Obama's home state of Illinois...

    Meanwhile, Brazil wants money from developed countries to not waste their greatest natural resource - the rain forests, while at the same time, they are a leader in using land for biofuels and deepwater drilling for oil - doesn't sound right to me. But then again - its politics and money - nothing to do with the environment nor climate change.

    Cheers.

    Kealey




    Complain about this comment

  • 12. At 07:30am on 08 Dec 2010, PAWB46 wrote:

    Richard, I don't know how you can continue to report such garbage coming from Cancun.

    Have you still not realised, after all this time, that the science behind AGW is non-existent? It is all agigantic scam - the biggest ever in the history of science.

    You will be remembered as one of those promoting the scam to the bitter end.

    I give it a year before the scam totally unravels. Then we can emit more CO2 and get the atmospheric concentration back up to historical values, that were most beneficial to plant life.

    Complain about this comment

  • 13. At 07:48am on 08 Dec 2010, MangoChutney wrote:

    @Richard

    Here's a message you can take to Cancun with you:

    NASA latest model tells us something that sceptics have been saying for years, namely, a CO2 enriched atmosphere leads to more plant growth and this creates a negative feedback (lower climate sensitivity)

    Of course, it is just a computer model with no observational data to back it up, so I guess we should be sceptical of the result, but Bounoua, the author, tells us "while the model's results showed a negative feedback, it is not a strong enough response to alter the global warming trend that is expected". This is clearly rubbish, as any change in feedback, negative or positive, must alter the expected warming trend, mustn't it?

    /Mango

    Complain about this comment

  • 14. At 08:06am on 08 Dec 2010, MangoChutney wrote:

    oops, and now the link

    http://www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/cooling-plant-growth.html

    /Mango

    Complain about this comment

  • 15. At 08:12am on 08 Dec 2010, WendyRainbow wrote:

    Much has been made recently in relation to Cancun about the linking of climate change to wealth redistribution, the implication being that climate change is just a pretext for wealth redistribution but in reality it is the other way round, wealth redistribution is a very effective way of tackling climate change.

    If wealth is transferred to developing and under-developed countries then those countries will be able to adopt clean technologies and if wealth is transferred from rich countries such that the real term buying power of people in those rich countries fell to say 1930’s levels then those people would still have a reasonable standard of living and a full life expectation but without the excessive consumption and resultant co2 emissions of recent decades. We in the rich countries are also going to have to get used to the idea of working for almost all of our lives, as our forebears did, as we can no longer expect a long and comfortable retirement supported by continuing carbon based economic growth. Renewables have a part to play but they cannot satisfy our current appetite, we will have to make big cuts.

    There is lots of good info’ on the web about wealth redistribution as a means of reducing our carbon footprint, for those who are interested.

    WendyRainbow

    Complain about this comment

  • 16. At 08:26am on 08 Dec 2010, Brunnen wrote:

    All those hardcore watermelons who are supporting AGW to the bitter end will never apologise when this nonsense is finally put to bed. They won't apologise for the billions of dollars wasted, the scare tactics they used (3 days to save the planet, indeed) or the misinformation they spread.

    No, they'll simply jump on the next green bandwagon and never mention AGW again.

    Complain about this comment

  • 17. At 08:26am on 08 Dec 2010, MangoChutney wrote:

    alarmists go on and on about carbon footprints and yet there is still no definite link between CO2 and significant global warming

    Confirm the link first and then ask us to reduce our carbon footprints

    /Mango

    Complain about this comment

  • 18. At 08:56am on 08 Dec 2010, Denison wrote:

    The historical position seems very naive looked at from todays perspective. Summed up is was 'Climate change is caused by CO2 cut CO2 = Kyoto' Sadly not all countries nor all politicians nor many of their constituents agreed.
    Now at least every country appears to accept that, whilst ALL the underlying causes and effects may not be fully understood (AND MAY NEVER BE BECAUSE THE REAL WORLD IS COMPLEX), human carbon emmissions are a key driver and MOST IMPORTANTLY remain the one certain thing we can do something about in a reasonable timeframe.
    The something we can do was never going to be one simple thing, its likely to be a myriad of mostly technical advances coupled with political and attitudinal changes. There is no single solution to Kyoto or Son of Kyoto.
    All the rest is political posturing, economics and protectionism. Its a pity its taken this long to get to the point we are at but now it really is the time for our leaders to show some leadership for a change.

    Complain about this comment

  • 19. At 08:59am on 08 Dec 2010, LabMunkey wrote:

    @ richard.

    Seriously, give this one up. The piece you did on biodiversity and disease was genuinley fascinating and a wholly new aspect i'd not encountered before (despite working in the field for for a few years a while back- the perils of over-specialisation).

    This whole piece reads like, well like you're trying to not only convine others- but yourself.

    The pscience behind cAGW is coming under uncreasing scrutiny and is being found wanting.

    All the methods used to combat it are hair-brained and some even do more damage than good (i'm looking at you wind). Please stop flogging this dead donkey and get on to reporting more interesting and relevant issues.

    I'll make a prediction now. Cancouldawouldashoulda will produce nothing but a vapid set of non-binding agreements with perhaps a date and location (probably warm) of a next 'conference' to really 'nail home the issue'.... You know this, i know this, the delegates know this.

    If i'm wrong i will donate money to a charity of your choice.

    Complain about this comment

  • 20. At 09:02am on 08 Dec 2010, Brunnen wrote:

    15. At 08:12am on 08 Dec 2010, WendyRainbow wrote:

    If wealth is transferred to developing and under-developed countries then those countries will be able to adopt clean technologies and if wealth is transferred from rich countries such that the real term buying power of people in those rich countries fell to say 1930’s levels then those people would still have a reasonable standard of living and a full life expectation but without the excessive consumption and resultant co2 emissions of recent decades.

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

    What a great idea! Let's write a blank cheque for all the corrupt governments of the developing world in the hope they'll use the money to buy 'clean technologies'.

    Perish the thought that the dictatorships, fiefdoms and banana republics that pass for governance in much of the developing world would use the money to make life better for themselves and leave their populations to root, hog or die. After all, they've never done anything like that in the past.

    Oh, and how about we DON'T wind the clock back to the 1930's? If it's all the same to you, I'm GLAD I missed the Great Depression...

    Complain about this comment

  • 21. At 09:08am on 08 Dec 2010, davblo wrote:

    MangoChutneyUKOK #13 & #14: "This is clearly rubbish..."

    Come on Mango you can do better than that.

    What you quote are not Bounoua's own words but the author of the article (Patrick Lynch) paraphrasing something Bounoua said. Do you not see the lead in phrase "Bounoua stressed that..." and the lack of quotation marks around the part you plucked out?

    The actual words from Bounoua are...

    "This feedback slows but does not alleviate the projected warming"

    So he already says the point you were trying to make. You don't need to "rubbish" him when you could just as well say you agree with him.

    /davblo

    Complain about this comment

  • 22. At 09:27am on 08 Dec 2010, JaneBasingstoke wrote:

    @MangoChutneyUKOK #13 #14
    (@davblo)

    (sigh)

    Mango, this is an old one. All things being equal CO2 does improve plant growth (although less so for C4 plants), this is the negative feedback. However not all things are equal. Increased CO2 and the associated warming is expected to b***** up water availability. More droughts and what have you.

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/CO2-is-Good-for-Plants-Another-Red-Herring-in-the-Climate-Change-Debate.html

    Complain about this comment

  • 23. At 09:34am on 08 Dec 2010, JaneBasingstoke wrote:

    @MangoChutneyUKOK #7

    Mango, would you like to reconsider your #7. To anyone new to these threads it makes you look like you are just thoughtlessly writing off Richard's journalism, and I presume it is the negotiators you meant to criticise.

    Complain about this comment

  • 24. At 09:34am on 08 Dec 2010, Brunnen wrote:

    skepticalscience.com?

    Really? I didn't think there was anyone left who didn't know that site was nothing more than an AGW propaganda sheet.

    Complain about this comment

  • 25. At 09:36am on 08 Dec 2010, LabMunkey wrote:

    @ jane
    #22.

    i'm dissapointed. That entire article makes the tacit assumption that rising co2 leads to rising temperature. This is not (currently) been demonstrated as the case.

    It's a poor rebuttal jane.

    Complain about this comment

  • 26. At 09:39am on 08 Dec 2010, euroslayer wrote:

    Look, Richard - it doesn't matter. Cancun does not matter. The idea that a trace gas can cause elevated temperatures or that Man can significantly impact the earth's natural climate cycles has been comprehensively debunked by distinguished climatologists. Even Jones over at the disgraced UEA admits he cannot explain why the planet has not warmed for the last 15 years (as predicted by the 'models').

    What WILL be affected by all of this, though, is public trust and confidence in journalism and science. The BBC has an online programme, Newswatch, which reflects the views of its audience.

    In this shameful episode from November 29th - http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b00vjxv3/Newswatch_29_10_2010 - David Jordan, the lead author of the new BBC guidelines explains that when it comes to climate change, the word 'impartiality' has a different meaning to the dictionary definition.

    "If both sides of the debate were to be reflected it would give the impression that both sets of views were equal and we don't have to approach impartiality in climate change in that way", says Jordan.

    How BBC journalists can cope with this level of humiliation beats me.

    Complain about this comment

  • 27. At 09:52am on 08 Dec 2010, Brunnen wrote:

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

  • 28. At 09:54am on 08 Dec 2010, Maria Ashot wrote:

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

  • 29. At 09:57am on 08 Dec 2010, JaneBasingstoke wrote:

    @MangoChutneyUKOK #13 #14
    @davblo #21

    My #22 was incomplete. It only addressed part of Mango's #13 and #14, the part about the older argument.

    Mango's NASA link shows that the model based estimates for climate sensitivity will all come down slightly. And as Davblo has pointed out, that is only slightly, it will slow global warming, but not by much.

    (Does this mean you are now accepting climate sensitivities based on model work Mango?)

    Complain about this comment

  • 30. At 10:00am on 08 Dec 2010, Smiffie wrote:

    This talk of wealth redistribution as a way of combating climate change, we all know that wealth sent to the third world will simply be used to buy guns, drugs and new football stadiums (I don’t know which is worse), we all know that the wealth that we send will not do any good, it should really be called wealth reduction.

    Some people support wealth reduction as a way of combating climate change because they really do believe this co2 stuff but many more support wealth reduction because it offends them that useful people are rewarded while useless people are not.

    @ Wolfiewoods – Wolfie, may I say how much I enjoyed your “Animal Farm” pun in the last thread. http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2010/12/hot_and_cold_oil_in_cancun_cli.html#P103890073

    Complain about this comment

  • 31. At 10:06am on 08 Dec 2010, Brunnen wrote:

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

  • 32. At 10:06am on 08 Dec 2010, LabMunkey wrote:

    @ 29

    Again jane a poor rebuttal. The model makes the (again) tacit assumption that co2 raises temperature, which has not been established (despite what anyone may claim)- all it shows is that there is potential for yet another previously-unknown negative feedback.

    Also no mention of how clouds were included in the model

    Complain about this comment

  • 33. At 10:11am on 08 Dec 2010, JaneBasingstoke wrote:

    @LabMunkey #25

    1. There will be a rise. How sensitive that rise is to greenhouse gas levels is still disputed, even the mainstream gives quite a broad range of sensitivities. But there will be a rise.

    2. I am used to reading sceptic stuff having to bear some sceptic assumptions in mind.

    Come to think of it I am used to having to read a lot of stuff on lots of subjects where I disagree with some of the underlying assumptions. If I only read stuff where I agreed with all the underlying assumptions I would be cutting myself off from much of the rest of the world, and many important ideas.

    The skepicalscience article was written from the point of view that mainstream ideas about climate sensitivity predict a range of possible temperature rises.

    These temperature rises are expected to impact climate especially rainfall, this expected impact seems less controversial than the associated climate sensitivity.

    Now, bearing in mind that the article was written based on an assumption of mainstream climate sensitivities, and bearing in mind that I am not asking you personally to accept mainstream ideas, do you still have a problem with it.

    Complain about this comment

  • 34. At 10:42am on 08 Dec 2010, LabMunkey wrote:

    @ jane- #33

    1- we do not know this. I'm sorry jane, but this is not for certain- the 15 year statistically significant LAG already shows this (though this is not to say temperatures may not begin to rise again).

    2-my poit is, that it's these tacit assumptions that the whole theory is based on. All supporting 'evidence' uses these assumptions- it's a circular and self-reinforcing logic. This IS NOT how science works.

    It's irrelevant whether i aggree with the stance or the majority of the climate scientisits. If their work is based on (as yet) unproven assumptions, then it is of little merit.

    There's a (climate) science blindspot here- that everyone seems to be ignoring.

    Put it this way- if you remove the assumption that co2 causes temperature rises (in a system with feedbacks- i am emphatically NOT debating the ghg effect) from all the corroborative work, what do you have left that supports the cAGW theory?

    I'd suggest not a lot. At all. Try it as an exercise jane, it will probably suprise you.

    Complain about this comment

  • 35. At 11:10am on 08 Dec 2010, Trainee Anarchist wrote:

    How can there be an proper agreement at Cancun when most country's are just looking for some clever wording that makes it look as if something is being done but just lets them carry on as usual.
    Money is the God, a much more potent drug than crack cocaine, and one that capitalism reveres above the lives of people, ecology or morals.
    They will agree to have other meetings, to make it look like they are responsible and educated people, but the result will always be the same....nothing doing if it effects profit.

    Complain about this comment

  • 36. At 11:10am on 08 Dec 2010, Denison wrote:

    You know its good to sceptical, even essential, but lets be clear the basic science that the composition of the gases (and its not just CO2) in the atmosphere effects the way heat is trapped has been known for nearly 200 years!!!!

    More CO2 (and water vapour and methane) will all trap more heat, less will trap less.

    The effects of solar cycles and radiation is less understood but its clearly orders of magnitude less that the atospheric effect. So apply occams razor here and the answer is pretty clear.

    Complain about this comment

  • 37. At 11:27am on 08 Dec 2010, SamuelPickwick wrote:


    'Terrific ten' given days to save the world

    I have a strange sense of deja vu.
    Were we not being told this time last year that Copenhagen was the last chance to save the World?

    Yes, I have just looked it up, and my memory does not deceive me:
    "The Copenhagen summit is the world's last chance to save the planet from "catastrophic" global warming, according to a major study led by Lord Stern of Brentford, the country's leading authority on climate change."

    And Gordon Brown said it too, and the New Statesman, so it must have been true.
    Since Copenhagen was the last chance and did nothing, the World must be already be doomed.

    Well, as you rightly say, this is 'hyperbole', but it is counterproductive hyperbole that will only increase scepticism.

    Complain about this comment

  • 38. At 11:31am on 08 Dec 2010, JaneBasingstoke wrote:

    @LabMunkey #34

    1. My point 1 is not about measured global temperature rises since the mid 20th Century.

    It's about the underlying greenhouse effect. Which will be contributing something to the climate regardless of climate sensitivity.

    2. The assumption is not tacit in that article. There is no blindspot. It's a warmist site.

    And it is completely unreasonable for you to demand that likely impacts of mainstream expectations of temperature rises get ignored.

    If it makes you feel any better I point out there is an obvious corollary for the expectations of the impact of greenhouse based temperature increases on rainfall. And I have tried to word my comments on that article to ensure that corollary stays clear, by using language such as "expectation" and "mainstream".

    Perhaps your problem is that you don't see that the corollary is obvious. Or perhaps you think only super-vigilant sceptics can spot it.

    Complain about this comment

  • 39. At 11:35am on 08 Dec 2010, rossglory wrote:

    #29 JaneBasingstoke

    jane, just like to say i really admire your patience and persistence with the sceptic community.

    the whole co2 fertilisation journey is such a dead-end i'm surprised mango raised it. the key aspect is that it's only a negative feedback if you store the co2 captured. for agricultural land it is irrelevant since crops are not normally co2 limited.

    Complain about this comment

  • 40. At 11:40am on 08 Dec 2010, bowmanthebard wrote:

    JaneBasingstoke #33 wrote:

    The skepicalscience article was written from the point of view that mainstream ideas about climate sensitivity predict a range of possible temperature rises.

    It was also written from a viewpoint of shameless pretentiousness. This bit is especially fake:

    at its most basic level, the CO2 plant food argument rests on a simple logical fallacy--the fallacy of exclusion, which focuses on one cause-and-effect (in this case, more CO2 means more plants) to the exclusion of all other cause-and-effect chains.

    The term 'fallacy of exclusion' is a non-standard made-up term for a much looser failing -- which hardly deserves the name 'fallacy' at all as it does not apply to deduction -- usually called 'hasty generalization'. And its common name pretty much explains it.

    Causes are conditions which together with an indefinite number of other conditions are sufficient for an effect to occur. For example, "if you strike a match AND there is enough oxygen AND the temperature is not too low AND the match is not too damp AND the friction is great enough AND... then the match will light." Since there is always an indefinite number of such conditions, no one ever exhaustively or explicitly lists all of the conditions which together are sufficient. No one can ever do that. So any claim about one thing causing another is contextual, with many conditions assumed in the context. The claim that "more CO2 causes more plant growth" is just such a claim. "It goes without saying" that water hasn't run out at the same time. All causal claims have to be read as if preceded by the clause "other things being equal".

    Furthermore, anyone with any logical training knows that already.

    Any person trying to cast the supposed "neglect" to mention that the availability of water is assumed in the context is just a phoney. It reveals the true calibre of these guys -- they're chancers, trying to pull the wool over ordinary people's eyes, as if they had some special "expertise" in logic.

    Really -- I'm faintly nauseated by that sort of intellectual pretentiousness.

    Complain about this comment

  • 41. At 11:55am on 08 Dec 2010, bowmanthebard wrote:

    JaneBasingstoke #38 wrote:

    And it is completely unreasonable for you to demand that likely impacts of mainstream expectations of temperature rises get ignored.

    That is ridiculous -- if it even makes any sense. There is a fancy Latin name for tacit assumptions: ceteris paribus clauses. It mean "other things being equal", NOT "other things being as the majority argue that they will become against a vociferous minority who argue the very opposite"!

    It is much better and much clearer to say something that assumes "the background stays the same" rather than "the background changes as the majority expect". Perhaps the majority of the world think that people who do bad things will suffer natural justice. It is perfectly OK to say "robbing banks makes criminals richer", even though a majority think that eventually robbers will get their comeuppance and lose out in the end.

    Complain about this comment

  • 42. At 11:55am on 08 Dec 2010, LabMunkey wrote:

    @ jane#38

    1- you missed my point. i only brought temperature into as you said "There will be a rise." . I am saying there is no direct evidence (despite coincidental) to support this assertion. Both have risen alongside each other (until recently when co2 has soared and temp has plateaued). The link is not currently there, hence your statement is inaccurate.

    That was what i was responding too.

    2- "And it is completely unreasonable for you to demand that likely impacts of mainstream expectations of temperature rises get ignored"

    This is not what i am saying- i am being quite clear in this regard. I am saying that the assumption used to PREDICT these rises is flawed. I’ve no problem with people enacting all sorts of doomsday scenarios, they just cannot pretend that they are likely given the current knowledge.

    To put it another way, Let’s pretend the following: What if there is another factor(s) at play that is currently being masked by co2. Co2 is in fact not the cause and this other factor is.

    Using the 'evidence' currently used to support cAGW you would not be able to distinguish between co2 and this other factor(s)-This is a HUGE problem and shows the evidence to be exceptionally weak.

    Hence the premise is flawed. THIS is the issue. The assumption pervades the entire issue- the whole thing is happening in reverse- the cause decided and then the work starts to prove it

    " Or perhaps you think only super-vigilant sceptics can spot it."

    No- only vigilant PEOPLE will spot it. It's an in-built assumptive positive feedback loop.

    Dr Judith Curry has already commented on such an effect on her blog and you could hardly class her as a sceptic.

    This is VERY basic scientific methodology; any assumptions used must be fully justified. Climate scientists are setting out to prove C02 causes temperature rises by first ASSUMING co2 causes temperature rises in their work. Surely you can see the circular logic here?

    Complain about this comment

  • 43. At 12:37pm on 08 Dec 2010, JaneBasingstoke wrote:

    @rossglory #39
    (@MangoChutneyUKOK #13 #14)

    Mango's apparent take on the NASA piece is potentially misleading. It actually covers two subtly different points, which is why I had two direct cracks at it.

    The NASA piece isn't about CO2 "fertilisation" per se, CO2 "fertilisation" is caused by a drop in wasteful photorespiration.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Photorespiration

    Instead it's about a related phenomenon, retention of more water when there is more CO2 available. These two factors act in sync, which is why C4 plants (which contain a metabolic CO2 concentrating pump) do well in relatively drier conditions.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/C4_carbon_fixation

    Complain about this comment

  • 44. At 12:46pm on 08 Dec 2010, PAWB46 wrote:

    At 11:10am on 08 Dec 2010, denizone wrote:

    "You know its good to sceptical, even essential, but lets be clear the basic science that the composition of the gases (and its not just CO2) in the atmosphere effects the way heat is trapped has been known for nearly 200 years!!!!"

    There is a slight problem here. Gases cannot trap heat. Simple physics really.

    Complain about this comment

  • 45. At 12:48pm on 08 Dec 2010, Denison wrote:

    the point about 'last chance to save the world' could be better put but with less soundbite quality as 'our ability to counter the trend rise in CO2 and meet whatever target you want to set (target = a % and a date) is reduced in some, probably logarithmic, proportion to the size of the required change and the time left to the target date....so for any given target the effort required gets bigger the longer it is before we start the process and sooner or later we will pass a point (last chance date) when it becomes impossible.

    is this year the last chance? or next? or 2015? no-one can know. All you can say with certainty is that one year soon it will be the last chance and we will pass it by and not know thats what it was until we find ourselves in a difficult maybe unsustainable future 20 or 30 or 40 years later by when its too late to do anything.


    Complain about this comment

  • 46. At 1:15pm on 08 Dec 2010, GeoffWard wrote:

    Apparently Mr Huhne will be called back to vote in the House at a critical time for the Cancun Climate Conference, where his contribution today - his key leadership role with his counterpart Brazilian Environmental minister - is 'pivotal'.
    Where does his higher responsibility lay?
    His higher role is in Cancun. The Opposition should (must) 'pair' him so he can win whatever is win-able on behalf of all people of the world.

    Complain about this comment

  • 47. At 1:18pm on 08 Dec 2010, LabMunkey wrote:

    @ #45

    could x 1
    probably x 1
    sooner or later x 1
    no one can know x 1
    one year soon x 1
    maybe x 1

    6 qualifiers in one short post- nice, but no qualifier bingo. :-(

    Complain about this comment

  • 48. At 1:19pm on 08 Dec 2010, Denison wrote:

    the simple physics is actually as always not so simple but in the sense that CO2 molecules capture and emit photons of both incoming (from the sun) and outgoing from the earth)in differential ways it can be said that each CO2 molecule has the potential to contribute a net energy gain to the atmosphere. in that sence it 'traps heat'

    Complain about this comment

  • 49. At 1:42pm on 08 Dec 2010, JaneBasingstoke wrote:

    @LabMunkey #42

    1. I repeat, there will be a temperature rise.

    The rate of the temperature rise is dependent on sensitivity to greenhouse gases, and other factors affecting climate may obscure it, or even temporarily reverse it. And perhaps there is some piece of physics out there waiting to be discovered that will prove the mainstream wrong on climate sensitivity. But the very basics of greenhouse physics (before all the arguments over climate sensitivity, feedbacks, and other climate drivers) says the increase in greenhouse gases will up the temperature.

    I remind you that negative feedbacks only dampen the effects of climate drivers, they don't reverse them.


    2. You seemed to be objecting to me looking at impacts before we had 100% certainty on the effect of temperature, or at least claiming that I hadn't included enough caveats.

    If that was not your intent please can you confirm it.

    And Judith Curry was not talking specifically about our conversation. I do more caveats than most warmists, as I hope you have noticed. And I believe the context means that also covers my use of a link to an overtly warmist site.


    3. The link gave two reasons for downplaying the CO2 fertilisation effect. The other was that there may be other factors unrelated to AGW that happen to be the limit on a particular plant's growth.

    I remind you that many farmers help their crops with irrigation, fertilisers, weedkillers and other pesticides.

    Complain about this comment

  • 50. At 1:57pm on 08 Dec 2010, Smiffie wrote:

    If anyone is interested there is a blog on the BBC Africa page about the role of religion in combating climate change.
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/africahaveyoursay/2010/12/can-religious-leaders-help-to.shtml#comments

    Complain about this comment

  • 51. At 2:00pm on 08 Dec 2010, LabMunkey wrote:

    @ jane

    1. We are probably talking at cross purposes here.
    GHG effect, all things being equal WILL raise temperatures- but do I need to remind you that an albedo change of only 1-2% will offset the ENTIRE predicted warming and that we STILL don’t understand clouds?

    What about the rapidly cooling oceans? With the sun entering a cooler phase the latent heat will not be replaced as quickly and COULD lead to drastically lower temperatures.

    Jane there are a number of factors that can and DO override any small effect by CO2 and you are doing yourself a severe disservice if you are trying to claim for one second, that co2 rises will trump them all- as that’s what it looks like currently

    2- I’m happy for you to look at potential impacts- just don’t pretend they’re going to happen.

    3- this point (though accurate) is irrelevant to my general thrust. It’s still another example of a previously unknown negative feedback. All these recently discovered unknown factors MUST add up jane.

    Re-Dr curry- here initial post was not commenting on our specific discussion of course- but her subsequent comments did suggest she was not only aware, but worried about the circular logic in climate science- I then applied this to our discussion- a lateral connection.

    I am not trying to suggest she’s commenting on directly on our discussion- but only a parallel theme.

    Complain about this comment

  • 52. At 2:13pm on 08 Dec 2010, JaneBasingstoke wrote:

    @bowmanthebard #40

    I don't have a lab. I am not and have never been a professional scientist. I don't have the personal facilities to measure the effects of extra CO2 on plants. Or nearly all of the other resource heavy science covered by that article.

    Now I could go away, and look for more academic links. But even if they weren't hidden behind a paywall, they would be rather less digestible than that given link.

    So I took a short cut. I thought hey, this article covers the scientific background of what I want to say, and the people reading the BBC threads will be able to cope with it being a warmist site.

    Obviously I was wrong. It doesn't matter how many times I refer to "mainstream" or "expectation" or "range" of climate sensitivities. People here can't cope with warmist links without assuming that the individual posting links is fully responsible for every dotted I and crossed T.

    Which puts me in a bind. Do I really need to go away, train up in multiple scientific disciplines and actually try and replicate this science before I get involved in debates on these threads? Debates with sceptics that for the most part have no more scientific training than I do now?

    @bowmanthebard #41

    I assumed that by "tacit" LabMunkey meant "unspoken". Are you finding some extra meaning in LabMunkey's use of the term?

    In the meantime your quote from my post is tangled up in some misunderstandings. I may have misunderstood LabMunkey when I made that quote, and there may have been misunderstandings before that.

    Complain about this comment

  • 53. At 2:26pm on 08 Dec 2010, Denison wrote:

    would you bet the future on known knowns, known unknowns, unknown knowns or accept that CO2 rise is man made and C02 is one significant factor in play that will push temperatures up (a known known) nothwithstanding other factors (unknown or otherwise) that we understand less.

    If you do a simple risk assessment you should conclude that we should act with all possible speed now on carbon reduction and continue research across the board of all conceivable factors.

    To wait for more 'proof' is foolish, to fail to invest in low, or even negative carbon technologies, is truly stupid. Especially true given that many subsititute technologies exist, that investment and deployment can only increase their cost effectiveness, that new low cost sources of hydrocarbons are increasing limited.

    So, for me, common sense dictates the direction we should take and the 'climate change argument' should become balanced by some bold economics.

    Complain about this comment

  • 54. At 2:26pm on 08 Dec 2010, sensiblegrannie wrote:

    I have been researching geopolymer cements
    http://www.geopolymer.org/library/technical-papers/17-development-and-properties-of-low-calcium-fly-ash-based-geopolymer-concrete.
    This is only one paper of many, re-looking at old technologies. Geopolymer concrete and cements could be used as an alternative to current high CO2 producing cements. Why am I researching concrete? As an artist, I look at all possible alternative forms of media. This product ticks the boxes for me but currently it does not appear to be available? Apparently, the Egyptians used this form of artificial rock in pyramid building and cast the blocks in situ. Nothing has changed over time except that current concretes are energy and resource hungry. This artificial rock does not have to be baked at very high temperatures like old fashioned bricks.
    The raw materials are basic and readily available in many environments.
    Many pre used bricks, ceramics, glass waste, marble waste, solid waste from rubbish burning power stations etc can be added to the mix with the addition of good old fashioned lye.
    'Where there is muck there is brass' or new opportunities to save energy.

    Complain about this comment

  • 55. At 2:30pm on 08 Dec 2010, PAWB46 wrote:

    denizone: A CO2 molecule that absorbs a photon and emits a photon within a zillionth of a second is not storing heat.

    Complain about this comment

  • 56. At 2:35pm on 08 Dec 2010, quake wrote:

    "What about the rapidly cooling oceans? With the sun entering a cooler phase the latent heat will not be replaced as quickly and COULD lead to drastically lower temperatures."

    But don't you think a 0.1-0.2% decrease in albedo will be enough to cancel out the entire cooling effect of a solar minimum so it won't happen?

    Complain about this comment

  • 57. At 2:36pm on 08 Dec 2010, bowmanthebard wrote:

    49. At 1:42pm on 08 Dec 2010, JaneBasingstoke wrote:

    I remind you that many farmers help their crops with irrigation, fertilisers, weedkillers and other pesticides.

    And according to the resident logicians of skepticalscience, you commit a "logical fallacy" if you say that irrigation helps crops, because water only helps crops if there is enough light and CO2, as there isn't if plants are underwater, as many of them will be if sea level are rising, as it is generally agreed they are, if global warming science is anything to go by!

    You can do much the same for fertilizers, weedkillers or pesticides.
    The logicians of skepticalscience call it the "fallacy of exclusion", but you may not be surprised to learn that other logicians haven't heard of it!

    Complain about this comment

  • 58. At 2:49pm on 08 Dec 2010, LabMunkey wrote:

    5@ quake

    it'll be 1-2% but potentially yes! though i'd need to have a look at the calculations (and of course there's a lag) but you're idea's just as feasable.

    Complain about this comment

  • 59. At 3:41pm on 08 Dec 2010, Denison wrote:

    PAWB46

    zillions of CO2 molecules on average absorbing and emitting photons of diffential energy levels will each get a little hotter if they aborb more energy than they lose ie they will move about faster which is what heat is actually. They then pass on that kinetic energy to other molecules in the air and this generates a 'net heat' build up to an equilibrium level dependent mostly on the concentration level of C02. The same effect is also evident with water vapour, methane and other 'greenhouse gases'

    Complain about this comment

  • 60. At 4:12pm on 08 Dec 2010, LabMunkey wrote:

    @ #59 denizone

    "The same effect is also evident with water vapour, methane and other 'greenhouse gases' "

    and their effect is by orders of magnitude greater than that of co2.

    Complain about this comment

  • 61. At 4:31pm on 08 Dec 2010, LarryKealey wrote:


    33. At 10:11am on 08 Dec 2010, JaneBasingstoke wrote:
    @LabMunkey #25

    1. There will be a rise. How sensitive that rise is to greenhouse gas levels is still disputed, even the mainstream gives quite a broad range of sensitivities. But there will be a rise.

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

    Oh, come on Jane - how can you be so sure there will be a rise?

    How can you be so sure that CO2 forcing is the only first order driver for climate change? It is a very complex problem (modeling the climate system) and we have bearly touched the surface.

    Also consider the 'state of the science' - all the 'fudges', etc.

    Do you really put stock in these doomsday predictions? I mean really - 10 people have just days to 'save the world' - get real.

    I recognize and respect that you are a very intelligent person - don't you think that we need to re-inspect the 'peer review' and 'mainstream' predictions, etc over the last ten years based upon the revelations of the last couple of years?

    Also, regardless of whether you believe temps will rise in the near term or not - please show me a realistic and viable solution.

    As has already been agreed by the IPCC itself, this is no longer about climate or environment but politics and money. I for one am not interested in giving money to corrupt third world governments - money that will never do anything to aleviate the suffering of the people - people who are suffering today and will continue to do so regardless of climate change theories.

    Hope you are doing well, haven't been around much, been kinda ill, but trying to blog when I can...

    Cheers.

    Kealey

    Complain about this comment

  • 62. At 4:51pm on 08 Dec 2010, JaneBasingstoke wrote:

    @PAWB46 #55
    (@denizone)

    Even if the emitted photon is of a longer wavelength?

    In the meantime there is an element of Gerlich and Tscheuschner about some of your posts. So you may be interested in the following.

    http://www.drroyspencer.com/2009/04/in-defense-of-the-greenhouse-effect/
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/07/23/quantifying-the-greenhouse-effect/

    Complain about this comment

  • 63. At 4:55pm on 08 Dec 2010, PAWB46 wrote:

    denizone: The only way the molecules will heat up is if they gain kinetic energy due to collisions. And that kinetic heat is not stored, but is transferred upwards due to convection.

    Water is a different kettle of fish altogether. The specific enthalpy of phase change is enormous, and water vapour is thus where energy is stored and released at higher altitude. That is why the water cycle is what controls and drives the climate, not an insignificant gas like CO2.

    Complain about this comment

  • 64. At 5:20pm on 08 Dec 2010, PAWB46 wrote:

    Jane:

    The photons are emitted at defined frequencies (quanta - energy levels).

    Complain about this comment

  • 65. At 5:24pm on 08 Dec 2010, JaneBasingstoke wrote:

    @LarryKealey #61
    (@LabMunkey #51)

    I didn't say that "CO2 forcing is the only first order driver for climate change". In fact my #49 explicitly references other climate drivers obscuring and/or temporarily reversing it.

    And please see my argument in context. It was triggered by LabMunkey's #25 where wording issues made it appear that he had a problem with the less disputed ultra basics of the greenhouse effect. LabMunkey has since clarified this in his #51.


    @LabMunkey #51 part 1

    Agreed, cross purposes. We are going to have to do something about this issue because it keeps cropping up and it doesn't really progress the debate.


    @LabMunkey #51 part 2

    "don’t pretend they’re going to happen"

    There's no pretend about it. I remind you that I am not accusing you of pretending they won't happen.

    I think both of us take different stands on the likelihood of them happening. I hope both of us realise that that is likelihood rather than certainty and that there is a bit of wiggle room as to what constitutes reasonable likelihood.


    @LabMunkey #51 part 3

    I wasn't debunking the newly discovered negative feedback. My #49 part 3 was solely in support of my comments on the older CO2 as fertiliser discussion.

    Complain about this comment

  • 66. At 6:01pm on 08 Dec 2010, Brunnen wrote:

    @23. At 09:34am on 08 Dec 2010, JaneBasingstoke wrote:
    @MangoChutneyUKOK #7

    Mango, would you like to reconsider your #7. To anyone new to these threads it makes you look like you are just thoughtlessly writing off Richard's journalism, and I presume it is the negotiators you meant to criticise.

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

    Let's be honest jane, when it comes to AGW, some journalists (and I certainly won't name names) can't be accused of of impartiality, can they?

    Even journalistic integrity would be a stretch. For some.

    Complain about this comment

  • 67. At 6:04pm on 08 Dec 2010, quake wrote:

    The decline in solar output in recent years from the solar maximum around 2003 to the current solar minimum resulted in less than 10% of the radiative imbalance that a doubling of CO2 would cause. And that solar imbalance is only maintained for a few years of an 11 year cycle, wheras the CO2 imbalance would be held as long as CO2 remained elevated - decades.

    Complain about this comment

  • 68. At 6:09pm on 08 Dec 2010, JaneBasingstoke wrote:

    @PAWB46 #64

    Atoms (and molecules) have more than one energy level. Are you really suggesting that the emitted photon always takes the electron back to its starting energy level?

    Complain about this comment

  • 69. At 6:18pm on 08 Dec 2010, MangoChutney wrote:

    delegates at Cancun sign a petition to ban that dangerous, most potent greenhouse gas, dihydrogen monoxide

    http://www.cfact.tv/2010/12/08/un-climate-kooks-want-to-cripple-us-economy-and-ban-h2o/

    lmao

    /Mango

    Complain about this comment

  • 70. At 6:19pm on 08 Dec 2010, Jack Hughes wrote:

    In breaking news ... Huhne Spills The Beans

    UK Climate Secretary Chris Huhne is set to fly back to London for a Commons Vote on tuition fees.

    He explains his fears about the climate talks:

    "It'll peter out, it won't vanish; people next year won't send a senior minister, they'll send a junior minister, and then the year after they'll send a senior civil servant, in a few years' time it'll bee the local ambassador, and it'll wither on the vine.

    He seems resigned to this happening: instead of describing how they are going to save the planet in the next 48 hours he discusses another jamboree next year:

    "That's not what we want here - we want a sense that there's renewed momentum so people are coming back next year with a real sense they want to reach a deal."

    Nice work if you can get it: a perpetual conference in lovely places.

    Complain about this comment

  • 71. At 6:37pm on 08 Dec 2010, MangoChutney wrote:

    @JaneBasingstoke #23

    I like Richard's writing when it comes to the real environmental problems, but this piece is just BS

    I stand by my comment

    /Mango

    Complain about this comment

  • 72. At 7:24pm on 08 Dec 2010, MangoChutney wrote:

    @davblo #21

    What you quote are not Bounoua's own words but the author of the article (Patrick Lynch) paraphrasing something Bounoua said. Do you not see the lead in phrase "Bounoua stressed that..." and the lack of quotation marks around the part you plucked out?

    The article is reporting what Bounoua said. I cannot see how you can be sure that Bounoua didn't say that. Neither of us were there and I did say "Bounoua, the author, tells us "while the model's results showed a negative feedback, it is not a strong enough response to alter the global warming trend that is expected"."

    That is clearly rubbish and rubbishes the statement not the person.

    /Mango

    Complain about this comment

  • 73. At 7:25pm on 08 Dec 2010, billy wrote:

    Do all the sceptics really think we can release hundreds of millions of years of fossilised carbon into the Earths system at an acelerating rate and nothing is going to happen!

    Scientists may disagree on the predictions but we have increased atmospheric C02 by over 20% in a mere 60 years, and it is still going up.

    Something is going to change that's for sure and it probably won't be good for humanity.

    Complain about this comment

  • 74. At 7:25pm on 08 Dec 2010, MangoChutney wrote:

    JabeBasingstoke #29

    (Does this mean you are now accepting climate sensitivities based on model work Mango?)

    Perhaps you missed the part where I said "Of course, it is just a computer model with no observational data to back it up, so I guess we should be sceptical of the result"

    /Mango

    Complain about this comment

  • 75. At 7:33pm on 08 Dec 2010, John Russell wrote:

    At 07:30am on 08 Dec 2010, PAWB46 wrote:

    "I give it a year before the scam totally unravels. Then we can emit more CO2 and get the atmospheric concentration back up to historical values, that were most beneficial to plant life."

    Are you, by any chance, a vegetable?

    I can see no other reason why you'd wish for CO2 concentrations any different to those that have been constant for the last 800,000 years, prior to humans burning fossil fuels in quantity.

    Complain about this comment

  • 76. At 7:40pm on 08 Dec 2010, bowmanthebard wrote:

    John Russell #75 wrote:

    I can see no other reason why you'd wish for CO2 concentrations any different to those that have been constant for the last 800,000 years, prior to humans burning fossil fuels in quantity.

    If you lived in the Sahara, or any desert that's been around for a long time, would you be against the idea of having more water there?

    Complain about this comment

  • 77. At 8:00pm on 08 Dec 2010, andrew9999 wrote:

    @mango

    #13
    you said "NASA latest model tells us something that sceptics have been saying for years, namely, a CO2 enriched atmosphere leads to more plant growth and this creates a negative feedback (lower climate sensitivity)"

    You'll also be delighted to know James Lovelock has been banging on about this for years, its all part of his Gaia theory.

    The important bit is to allow more plants to grow and not chop more of them down.

    Complain about this comment

  • 78. At 8:21pm on 08 Dec 2010, MangoChutney wrote:

    @andrew9999 #77

    The important bit is to allow more plants to grow and not chop more of them down.


    I agree

    /Mango

    Complain about this comment

  • 79. At 8:57pm on 08 Dec 2010, sensiblegrannie wrote:

    http://www.worldometers.info/cars/
    CO2 and carbon monoxide levels must be rising as the world population increases along with the demand for more technology. 60 billion people wanting the same as everyone else. Why do people want their own transport? People want their own transport to get to work, because more and more employers are demanding that their employees work anti-social hours while less public transport is available to support this. Ok so the plants might eventually solve the C02 problem but what about the carbon monoxide and other noxious gasses?

    Complain about this comment

  • 80. At 10:41pm on 08 Dec 2010, JaneBasingstoke wrote:

    @MangoChutneyUKOK #74

    Did you miss the bits, in posts after posts, where warmists posting on these threads made it clear that where there is some degree of choice we value empirical results over theory. And where we show famous warmists like Hansen and Lovelock make it quite clear that the climate models are less important than measurements.

    Complain about this comment

  • 81. At 10:50pm on 08 Dec 2010, LarryKealey wrote:


    65. At 5:24pm on 08 Dec 2010, JaneBasingstoke wrote:
    @LarryKealey #61
    (@LabMunkey #51)

    I didn't say that "CO2 forcing is the only first order driver for climate change". In fact my #49 explicitly references other climate drivers obscuring and/or temporarily reversing it.

    And please see my argument in context. It was triggered by LabMunkey's #25 where wording issues made it appear that he had a problem with the less disputed ultra basics of the greenhouse effect. LabMunkey has since clarified this in his #51.

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

    Sorry Jane, the context does not matter, your statement was very clear:

    "There will be a rise [in temperature due to CO2 emissions]."

    How can you be so sure? The sensitivity of our climate to changes in the trace gas CO2 is not 'a number' - but a complex function of a great many interrelated variables. Most of which is very poorly understood. To believe the sensitivity is a constant is just ignorant and simplistic [no offense meant to you].

    Oh, and given the fact that the error associated is of the same order of magnitude as the result - renders the result mathematically meaningless. In other words, it means get better data, develop a better model, iterate until you get a good answer with margin of error at least an order or two of maginitude less than your answer...


    As I am sure you are aware, my view is that man has had the greatest impact on the Earth's Climate through land and water [mis] use. It has also been the greatest environmental impact.

    I would be more concerned about nuclear arms at this point. While we have the ability to wipe ourselves out - we can't destroy the earth. The earth has taken care of itself a very long time and fared disasters much worse than anything we could possibly do. The real issue is to do a better job of managing earth's resources and the remaining natural habitats.

    Think of it - Nuclear Armaggedon would certainly kill us all off - but not all life on earth. It would just be another 'mass-extinction' - one of many. And it would all recover in short-order, geologically speaking.

    The headline here is just so - alarmist - "...Just Days To Save The World". Please, give us all a break, these people are not there to save the world and they couldn't save the world if they wanted to. It is actually like they have just a few days to politic and grab as much money as they can...

    Cheers.

    Kealey

    Complain about this comment

  • 82. At 10:56pm on 08 Dec 2010, LarryKealey wrote:



    75. At 7:33pm on 08 Dec 2010, John Russell wrote:

    I can see no other reason why you'd wish for CO2 concentrations any different to those that have been constant for the last 800,000 years, prior to humans burning fossil fuels in quantity.

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

    Ah, have you been living under a snowball - pun intended.

    CO2 levels have been anything but constant for the last 800,000 years. They have changed dramatically with each ice age and interglacial. Interestingly enough, CO2 seems to peak just before the end of each interglacial. You find the highest concentrations of CO2 just before we start another ice age.

    Isn't that interesting? Is there a point where CO2 causes a very high negative sensitivity?

    Something to ponder.

    Cheers.

    Kealey

    Complain about this comment

  • 83. At 11:02pm on 08 Dec 2010, LarryKealey wrote:

    78. At 8:21pm on 08 Dec 2010, MangoChutneyUKOK wrote:
    @andrew9999 #77

    The important bit is to allow more plants to grow and not chop more of them down.


    I agree

    /Mango

    I also agree. Better use of our land and habitat preservation and restoration.

    -Kealey

    Complain about this comment

  • 84. At 11:06pm on 08 Dec 2010, Barry Woods wrote:

    'Terrific ten' given days to save the world


    More Hype? - Good thing sea level are OK - or we would be really stuffed.

    Last years sea level hype...

    Let us not pretend that the sea level scare stories were not ramped up just before Copenhagen.

    Guardian: 'Copenhagen Diagnosis' offers a grim update to the IPCC's climate science - 25th November 2009 (- 6 days after climategate)

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2009/nov/25/copenhagen-diagnosis-ipcc-science

    "Twenty-six climatologists—including 14 IPCC members—have released a startling update to the [IPCC AR4 ] panel's work, reporting that sea levels could rise and methane-laden arctic permafrost could melt much sooner than the panel had anticipated.

    Sea-level predictions revised: By 2100, global sea-level is likely to rise at least twice as much as projected by Working Group 1 of the IPCC AR4; for unmitigated emissions it may well exceed 1 meter. The upper limit has been estimated as ~ 2 meters sea level rise by 2100. Sea level will continue to rise for centuries after global temperatures have been stabilized, and several meters of sea level rise must be expected over the next few centuries."


    At Cancun they were saying 2 metres only 7 days ago (and the Telegraph) - did the Met Office choose a good day to bury bad (Good actually) news?

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/environment/climatechange/8170075/Cancun-climate-change-summit-small-island-states-in-danger-of-extinction.html

    "The study of climate change impacts in the Caribbean warned that sea levels could rise by up to 6.5ft (2m) by the end of the 21st Century if global warming continues. There is also an increased risk of hurricanes and storm surges. - Louise Gray

    All very interesting.

    2 Days ago - Met office says 2 metre sea levels was wrong, 59cm is WORST case and upto 2 feet could happen.

    Daily Mail:
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-1335964/Alarmist-Doomsday-warning-rising-seas-wrong-says-Met-Office-study.html#ixzz17KZaXtHJ

    Telegraph: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/environment/climatechange/8182278/Climate-change-Met-Office-halves-worst-case-sea-level-prediction.html

    My take on recent events:

    UK Met Office - 2m - 4m alarmist rises in sea leve are wrong and Gulf stream NOT shutting down, both bits of good news buried away pg 19, half a column Dail Mail...

    http://www.realclimategate.org/2010/12/official-alarmist-warnings-of-2m-sea-level-rises-are-wrong-met-office-study/

    Guardian spins this away, with another alarmist headline.
    http://www.realclimategate.org/2010/12/climate-propaganda-the-guardian-minimise-the-good-news-about-sea-levels-amongst-the-new-bad-news/

    Complain about this comment

  • 85. At 11:07pm on 08 Dec 2010, LarryKealey wrote:

    69. At 6:18pm on 08 Dec 2010, MangoChutneyUKOK wrote:
    delegates at Cancun sign a petition to ban that dangerous, most potent greenhouse gas, dihydrogen monoxide

    http://www.cfact.tv/2010/12/08/un-climate-kooks-want-to-cripple-us-economy-and-ban-h2o/

    lmao

    /Mango

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

    Funny, but very scary at the same time...I'm gonna hold on to that one for later use ;)

    -Kealey

    Complain about this comment

  • 86. At 11:28pm on 08 Dec 2010, blunderbunny wrote:

    @JaneBasingstoke #68 #64

    Bordering on QED and Feynman Diagrams again ;-)

    But you are both right, atoms may have a number of excited states and photons will be emitted (of varying wavelenghts) as that atom attempts to return to it's ground state and the energies of these photons can only take a limited number of values, indeed, it's these limited values that give us spectral emission lines that allow us to identify elements by their spectra alone. You can think of them as finger prints, if that helps ;-)

    Regards,

    One of the Lobby

    Complain about this comment

  • 87. At 04:48am on 09 Dec 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    23. JaneBasingstoke

    Do you call what parrots repeat 'journalism'?

    The meaning of this term just ain't what it used to be. At its height - say the work of the Watergate investigators - "investigative journalism" meant more than just transcribing whatever some cherry picked source told you, without question, when it fit the message.

    You might want to look up the definition of propaganda in the dictionary.

    Complain about this comment

  • 88. At 05:43am on 09 Dec 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    #85. LarryKealey

    Its at WUWT too:

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/12/08/cop16-attendees-fall-for-the-old-dihydrogen-monoxide-petition-as-well-as-signing-up-to-cripple-the-u-s-economy/

    The incredible ignorance of lemming-like behaviour of the young clones at Cancun is both hilarious and, as you say, scary. Sheep this dense can be led to do anything.

    Let's call them Hansen Youth.

    And these simpletons no doubt believe everything Richard parrots too.

    Complain about this comment

  • 89. At 07:37am on 09 Dec 2010, PAWB46 wrote:

    Official UN delegates sign petition calling on a ban of dihydrogen monoxide! It would be funny if it wasn't so scary that there are so many gullible idiots trying to save the planet.

    Complain about this comment

  • 90. At 08:26am on 09 Dec 2010, MangoChutney wrote:

    @JaneBasinstoke #80

    Did you miss the bits, in posts after posts, where warmists posting on these threads made it clear that where there is some degree of choice we value empirical results over theory. And where we show famous warmists like Hansen and Lovelock make it quite clear that the climate models are less important than measurements.

    I didn't miss it Jane, but I did notice AGWer's still point to "evidence" based on non-empirical data to justify their belief in AGW. Let's be honest, Jane, no amount of ice melt or sea rise shows empirically what caused the melt / rise, and yet this is often held up (not by you of course) as evidence that man caused global warming

    /Mango

    Complain about this comment

  • 91. At 08:45am on 09 Dec 2010, bowmanthebard wrote:

    JaneBasingstoke #80 wrote:

    warmists posting on these threads made it clear that where there is some degree of choice we value empirical results over theory.

    Anyone who thinks there is such a thing as theory-neutral "empirical results" is hopelessly naive.

    Complain about this comment

  • 92. At 09:19am on 09 Dec 2010, PAWB46 wrote:

    And what a load of codswallop we have from the Cancun knees-up.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-11950882

    Complain about this comment

  • 93. At 1:31pm on 09 Dec 2010, LarryKealey wrote:

    69. At 6:18pm on 08 Dec 2010, MangoChutneyUKOK wrote:
    delegates at Cancun sign a petition to ban that dangerous, most potent greenhouse gas, dihydrogen monoxide

    http://www.cfact.tv/2010/12/08/un-climate-kooks-want-to-cripple-us-economy-and-ban-h2o/

    lmao

    /Mango

    & #88 CanadianRockies

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

    Do either of you have the actual petition results - % of attendees who signed each patition or additional statistics.

    So, what does this tell us about what we can expect from Cancun? Fortunately, Mexico is where UN initiatives go to die ;)

    As I have been saying, and the IPCC admits, its not about the science anyways, it is about politics, money and redistribution of wealth - mainly from the United States to corrupt third world governments and corporation who can cash in on the 'mechanisms' the UN currently has in place (like CDM) and all those additional billions they want to take from US.

    I am all for aleviating poverty and misery in the world - but this isn't going to do that.

    I am all for improving the environment - but this isn't going to do that either.

    I am actually going to send an 'old style' Telegram (yes, you still can ;) to Obama today demanding that the US pull out of the conference until every delegate who signed either petition is replaced - not that it will make a difference.

    It really bothers me that the US is the largest funder of the UN, by far - and we get treated like garbage and provide a world state of third world dictators and morons right here in New York. Disgusting.

    For those of you who don't understand global economics - so goes the American Economy - so goes the world. So, go ahead and try and cripple us - we will recover, stronger, and the rest of you will be much worse off. If the taxes are raised (i.e. Buch cuts allowed to expire), then the US economic recovery will end and its implications will be global.

    Chew on that one for a while.

    Right now, I am a lot more concerned about North Korea and Iran. In my view, puppets of China and Russia respectively. Does anyone in their right mind want to see Iran become a nuclear power with the capability to carry out their dream of nuking Isreal? How about Nuclear war on the Korean Penninsula - with second target Alaska - within range of the latest delivery systems developed by North Korea. What affect would that have on the environment?

    Make no mistake, the US will not start the next nuclear war - but we will end it. I hope that I don't live to see it happen.

    Cheers.

    Kealey


    PS, @Richard, please carry on, it is really quite amusing - although if you want to talk about a few people having days to save the world - perhaps you should be talking about North Korea.

    Complain about this comment

  • 94. At 6:41pm on 09 Dec 2010, JaneBasingstoke wrote:

    @LarryKealey #81

    Larry, the sheer number of caveats involved in some statements means that these debates are very prone to misunderstandings.

    Now I remembered the caveat about climate sensitivity, because that is very up front in these discussions. And I remembered the caveat about other primary drivers because ditto.

    But my use of the verb "to obscure", as in my reference to other primary drivers obscuring the contribution by greenhouse effect to global temperatures, may need flagging up.

    You may have missed this because if asked whether I think the extra greenhouse effect will cause temperatures to rise absolutely (as opposed to relative to without the extra greenhouse effect), I, as a warmist, would of course say "very probably yes", because I am not aware of any combination of drivers sufficient to cancel the extra greenhouse effect.

    Silly me. Thinking I could get away with a simple verb when actually I needed a whole paragraph of extra wordy caveat.


    "Climate sensitivity - constant versus something more chaotic"

    As for the issue of climate sensitivity constant versus something more chaotic, I agree it is likely to be chaotic, (have you been reading Lovelock on this issue), but I do not expect the long term trend to be in the opposite direction of the driver. (Is this another caveat I have to roll out every time I discuss the issue?)


    "headline"

    Richard refers to Enid Blyton in it. So no, I don't think Richard is being quite as alarmist as you suggest.

    Incidentally if you are familiar with the work of Enid Blyton, you may appreciate "Five Go Mad in Dorset" by "The Comic Strip Presents".
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Five_Go_Mad_in_Dorset
    http://www.channel4.com/programmes/comic-strip-presents/episode-guide/series-1/episode-1

    Complain about this comment

  • 95. At 6:44pm on 09 Dec 2010, JaneBasingstoke wrote:

    @MangoChutneyUKOK #69
    @LarryKealey #85 #93
    @CanadianRockies #88
    @PAWB46 #89

    Not the first time dihydrogen monoxide hoaxes have caught people out.
    http://www.snopes.com/science/dhmo.asp

    Dihydrogen monoxide site.
    http://www.dhmo.org/

    And Larry, yes it would be interesting to see what sort of person signed the petitions.

    Complain about this comment

  • 96. At 6:45pm on 09 Dec 2010, JaneBasingstoke wrote:

    @MangoChutneyUKOK #90

    Firstly you don't get the importance of models.

    Models are useful when the science involves significant arithmetic to work out the implications of relevant scientific theory. Models that can't manage hindcasts or predictions help show flaws in the understanding of the science. Models that manage hindcasts and/or predictions suggest that some of the scientific understanding could be correct. The long term aim would be to get a model that can both manage hindcasts and predict most stuff before it happens.

    Secondly much of the stuff about ice melts and temperature rises in general is because regardless of cause it is relevant to the debate.

    Thirdly in some instances the known alternative climate drivers to greenhouse gases would be expected to cause net cooling where we have seen warming. Things like variations in the Sun's output and variations in aerosols. And this sort of argument only uses the models for the finer detail. However it does come with the caveat that it only takes account of well understood drivers.

    Complain about this comment

  • 97. At 6:45pm on 09 Dec 2010, JaneBasingstoke wrote:

    @bowmanthebard #91

    "theory-neutral "empirical results""

    But there are differing contributions from theory and measurement. Hence my phrase "some degree of choice".

    Complain about this comment

  • 98. At 7:41pm on 09 Dec 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    #95. JaneBasingstoke wrote:

    "yes it would be interesting to see what sort of person signed the petitions."

    That's easy. Just watch the video. Its the same "sort of person" who are the climate activists... you know, misinformed useful idiots. The kind of people who believe anything Richard parrots.


    Complain about this comment

  • 99. At 7:44pm on 09 Dec 2010, MangoChutney wrote:

    @JaneBasingstoke #96

    Firstly you don't get the importance of models.

    Jane, I understand models can be very important in all walks of life and science, but models are only as good as the information they are provided with.

    The climate models are as good as the data they are based on i.e. not very good. I'm know the models can easily show that doubling CO2 produces 'X' amount of warming and are able to model some physical aspects of the atmosphere, but they are still unable to model all aspects of the atmosphere.

    Until the models are able to model major influences on the climate such as clouds, they are no any better than Blackpool's Gypsy Rose Lee.

    Secondly much of the stuff about ice melts and temperature rises in general is because regardless of cause it is relevant to the debate.


    Why? Temperature rises, ice melts, but ice also melts because of wind and ocean currents, underground sources of heat, such as volcanoes. Ice melt and temperature rise is a symptom of something but proof of nothing.

    Thirdly....

    Jane, there are so many things that we don't understand about the earth and the sun and we are still making new discoveries. We don't know the affect, or not, of cosmic rays on cloud formulation. We don't know what effect the moon moving away from the earth at 3.8cm per annum has on the tides or sea level or moths or the menstrual cycle or anything else you care to mention (sorry, started being silly there).

    So, Jane, I think being sceptical about the ability of climate models to predict the future is justified, especially when you factor in the unknown effect of clouds on the climate. Come on Jane, even the IPCC are sceptical that climate models are accurate

    /Mango

    Complain about this comment

  • 100. At 7:51pm on 09 Dec 2010, MangoChutney wrote:

    plus, did you know the moon moving away from earth is actually slowing the earth's rotation ever so slightly?

    Conspiracy theory #65758:

    The moon moving away from the earth by 3.8cm per annum is causing the earth's rotation by 0.000017 second allowing the sun's rays to warm up the temperature record sufficiently to cause global warming

    /Mango

    PS Before anybody says anything, it's a joke, and anyway, that idea is as plausible as CO2 being able to significantly raise temperature! lol

    Complain about this comment

  • 101. At 8:13pm on 09 Dec 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    #100. MangoChutneyUKOK wrote:

    Enough of your wild theories! The real cause is obviously the skyrocketing temperatures of the earth's core. Must I remind you that Al Gore stated that it was several million degrees now, a dramatic, undoubtedly catastrophic, increase on what was previously understood.

    But no worries. With enough funding to Zimbabwe and Venezuela, the UN can control that, protecting thhe children and us all.

    God bless the UN.

    Complain about this comment

  • 102. At 9:04pm on 09 Dec 2010, JaneBasingstoke wrote:

    @CanadianRockies

    "parrot"

    You grossly undervalue the act of straightforward reporting.

    Your attitude would allow the less democratically minded to scrap Hansard. Your attitude would also have supported a super-injunction last Autumn, when one incident of such straightforward "parroting" of parliamentary proceedings was put on hold by the super-injunction.

    http://www.parliament.uk/about/how/publications/hansard/
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/8311885.stm

    Complain about this comment

  • 103. At 9:16pm on 09 Dec 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

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

  • 104. At 10:07pm on 09 Dec 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    #102. JaneBasingstoke wrote:

    "You grossly undervalue the act of straightforward reporting.

    Your attitude would allow the less democratically minded to scrap Hansard."

    To use your Hansard analogy, the difference is that Richard only selectively reports what some MPs say. That is, only the ones who say what fits his chosen message.

    Moreover, Richard editorializes/interprets, selectively, in a way that ALWAYS fits his desired message.

    That is not "straightforward reporting" at all.


    Complain about this comment

  • 105. At 11:08pm on 09 Dec 2010, JaneBasingstoke wrote:

    @CanadianRockies #104

    My Hansard example was an example of how extreme parroting is an important part of journalism, not an exact analogy of Richard's journalism.

    And now after whinging about parroting, you seem upset that Richard isn't confined to parroting.

    Richard's Earth Watch pieces are supposed to be journalist level opinion pieces and they have to be limited to reflect space. That forces more editorialising/interpreting on Richard.

    I'm not seeing strong message pushing here. The Enid Blyton Famous Five / Secret Seven "save the world" reference is hardly alarmist, it looks ironic to me. Or are you all super deferential to Blyton in Canada?

    [Unsuitable/Broken URL removed by Moderator]
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Secret_Seven

    Now most people that take an interest in the AGW debate also have some opinions. Surely you can cope with that in a series of opinion pieces.

    Complain about this comment

  • 106. At 11:13pm on 09 Dec 2010, LarryKealey wrote:

    104. At 10:07pm on 09 Dec 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:
    #102. JaneBasingstoke wrote:

    "You grossly undervalue the act of straightforward reporting.

    Your attitude would allow the less democratically minded to scrap Hansard."

    To use your Hansard analogy, the difference is that Richard only selectively reports what some MPs say. That is, only the ones who say what fits his chosen message.

    Moreover, Richard editorializes/interprets, selectively, in a way that ALWAYS fits his desired message.

    That is not "straightforward reporting" at all.

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

    Actually, Richard does not claim to be a reporter - this is an opinion blog - read the upper-right hand corner of this page...it reads:

    "I'm Richard Black, environment correspondent for the BBC News website. This is my take on what's happening to our shared environment as the human population grows and our use of nature's resources increases."

    So, in all fairness - this is 'his take' or opinions if you will - he just starts the blog...not actually a reporter...more like a pundit.

    Cheers.

    Kealey

    Complain about this comment

  • 107. At 11:30pm on 09 Dec 2010, JaneBasingstoke wrote:

    @MangoChutneyUKOK #99

    Mango, the thing about the models is that it isn't a case that either they work or they don't. They are sufficiently complicated that will be intermediate steps between first attempts and final reasonably working models.

    Your Blackpool Rose Lee example is inappropriate.

    Think Kepler, working through from circular orbits to ellipses. And then Newton introducing the law of Inverse Gravitation and exposing the three body problem. Even Newton's physics isn't good enough for space probes. (I am avoiding the E-word in case the temporal dimension sceptic is lurking.) But you can see the incremental improvements. And each improvement, and the discrepancies associated with the previous version, helped the science of gravity forward and was more useful than the previous version for the non-scientists.


    Ice melt and temperature rises are important. Firstly where their history is known well enough they can be used to help identify drivers. Secondly you can't discuss what caused them without knowing what they are.


    There are limits on what else can be contributing to climate changes. Climate must obey the law of the conservation of energy. The more reasonable ideas include cloud cover, which is hardly ignored by the IPCC, and changes in ocean currents. Cosmic rays seem unlikely to make a big contribution, but they do need looking at.

    And your final comment about the IPCC and models looks as if you didn't understand my earlier points about models.

    Complain about this comment

  • 108. At 00:44am on 10 Dec 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    #105. JaneBasingstoke wrote:

    "My Hansard example was an example of how extreme parroting is an important part of journalism, not an exact analogy of Richard's journalism."

    The record of the Hansard is a transcription, a recording of what was said. It is not journalism, any more than a tape recorder is a journalist.

    "And now after whinging about parroting, you seem upset that Richard isn't confined to parroting."

    Not at all. I am simply aware of the selective parroting.

    "Richard's Earth Watch pieces are supposed to be journalist level opinion pieces and they have to be limited to reflect space. That forces more editorialising/interpreting on Richard."

    Hmmm... "journalist level opinion pieces"? If you delete the words "journalist level" I would agree with you completely.

    "I'm not seeing strong message pushing here. The Enid Blyton Famous Five / Secret Seven "save the world" reference is hardly alarmist, it looks ironic to me. Or are you all super deferential to Blyton in Canada?"

    Look at all these blogs. If you can't see any "strong message pushing" then I guess you choose not to.

    "Now most people that take an interest in the AGW debate also have some opinions. Surely you can cope with that in a series of opinion pieces."

    I certainly can. I welcome those OPINIONS because it makes life interesting. But some people confuse these opinion pieces with some kind of objective journalism - which they are not.

    And speaking of models, what is your opinion of this:

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/12/05/new-peer-reviewed-paper-shows-just-how-bad-the-climate-models-are/




    Complain about this comment

  • 109. At 00:47am on 10 Dec 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    #106. LarryKealey wrote:

    "So, in all fairness - this is 'his take' or opinions if you will - he just starts the blog...not actually a reporter...more like a pundit."

    Could not agree with you more. Just like Hannity on Fox News.

    Complain about this comment

  • 110. At 07:37am on 10 Dec 2010, MangoChutney wrote:

    @JaneBasingstoke #107

    Mango, the thing about the models is that it isn't a case that either they work or they don't. They are sufficiently complicated that will be intermediate steps between first attempts and final reasonably working models.

    I accept they are a work in progress, and, in the future, they may actually be accurate, but, at this moment in time, they are not worth anything. Even the IPCC agrees the climate models are not accurate and full of deficiencies, although you won't see that statement in the SPM.

    I'm not sure I would be happy boarding an aircraft that was a work in progress. Let's see fuselage, check. seats, check. crew, check, Wings, er... "Don't worry, Sir, it's a work in progress.

    Ice melt and temperature rises are important. Firstly where their history is known well enough they can be used to help identify drivers. Secondly you can't discuss what caused them without knowing what they are.

    The point is, Jane, most AGWer's put the cart before the horse. They say melting ice, therefore man made CO2 was the cause. They say glacier melting, therefore man made CO2 was the cause, but there are alternatives, although in the Kilimanjaro case, it really was caused by man (deforestation caused a change in wind patterns)

    /Mango

    Complain about this comment

  • 111. At 4:05pm on 10 Dec 2010, JaneBasingstoke wrote:

    @MangoChutneyUKOK #110

    "I'm not sure I would be happy boarding an aircraft that was a work in progress. Let's see fuselage, check. seats, check. crew, check, Wings, er... "Don't worry, Sir, it's a work in progress."

    I think there are a few hidden assumptions in there as to what constitutes potential use of a work in progress aircraft. Commercial passenger jet wouldn't normally be one of them.

    So let's take the original example of a heavier than air work in progress aircraft. The prototypes built by the Wright brothers. Personally I would not be happy to fly in one of these aircraft, and there are many many things they can't do. But to describe something as useless when it has value as a prototype for heavier than air flight, and can be used to investigate other related ideas, would be wrong.


    The point is...

    The point is Mango, that the original AGW discussion started off with the greenhouse effect and some scientists asking whether or not our emissions would significantly impact climate. Investigating that properly includes, but is not confined to, measuring climate especially temperature.

    Knowing historical temperatures can help towards identifying climate drivers. This is most obvious on the timescales of tens and hundreds of millions of years, where the temperature reflects variations in the Earth's orbit.

    Complain about this comment

  • 112. At 5:26pm on 10 Dec 2010, MangoChutney wrote:

    Jane,

    I totally accept the so-called greenhouse effect is real and I totally accept CO2 is capable of raising the temperature, although, as you are aware, not significantly by itself except for the first few ppm of CO2. I also totally except knowing historical temperatures can help towards identifying climate drivers, but the recent temperature record has been manipulated almost beyond recognition and has been shown to be inaccurate due to poor siting of weather stations. Beyond historical records of temperature, the proxy temperatures have been shown to be nothing more than a statistical error.

    The RWP, MWP and the LIA all existed in the last 2000 years, so what historical temperatures are we actually comparing to the current record?

    For those of you who don't like WUWT, please look away now!

    A recent study (not peer reviewed or published) using the Vostock data seems to show the warming is nothing out of the ordinary, so what historical temperatures are we actually comparing to the current record?

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/12/09/is-the-warming-in-the-20th-century-extraordinary/

    I'm sorry Jane, but AGWer's have to come up with something better than "if CO2 causes temperature rise and CO2 has risen due to man, therefore man must have caused the temperature rise". You have to demonstrate cause and effect not a correlation, which may as well be a correlation of sales of fizzy drinks to temperature rise.

    /Mango

    Complain about this comment

  • 113. At 6:17pm on 10 Dec 2010, JaneBasingstoke wrote:

    @MangoChutneyUKOK #110
    (@myself #111)

    "Knowing historical temperatures can help towards identifying climate drivers. This is most obvious on the timescales of tens and hundreds of millions of years, where the temperature reflects variations in the Earth's orbit."

    Ouch, dyslexic moment, as I meant to refer to the correlation between ice core temperature proxies and orbital variations, and the ice cores only go back hundreds of thousands of years.

    Should be

    "Knowing historical temperatures can help towards identifying climate drivers. This is most obvious on the timescales of tens and hundreds of thousands of years, where the temperature reflects variations in the Earth's orbit."

    @MangoChutneyUKOK #112

    "RWP, MWP and the LIA all existed in the last 2000 years" [Mango]

    "if CO2 causes temperature rise and CO2 has risen due to man, therefore man must have caused the temperature rise" [Mango interpretation of warmist argument]

    I'm not referencing the Hockey Stick stuff. The Hockey Stick stuff is somewhat incidental to the debate. It got blown up out of all proportion by a series of incidents and misunderstandings. And that was before Climategate.

    And you mischaracterise the warmist argument. The mainstream scientists asked the question "what are the most likely climate sensitivities to greenhouse gases". They got a range of possible answers with documented caveats and uncertainties associated with those answers.

    You may disagree with their actual approach. You may find specific flaws in their work. But your #112 statement grossly oversimplifies any errors in their actual approach.

    Complain about this comment

  • 114. At 6:26pm on 10 Dec 2010, MangoChutney wrote:

    I accept my statement oversimplifies any errors in their actual approach, so let them bring robust evidence to the table and not a weak correlation

    /Mango

    Complain about this comment

  • 115. At 7:40pm on 10 Dec 2010, CanadianRockies wrote:

    Here's a handy list of all the 'errors' perpetrated by the AGW crisis industry:

    "Climate Science Scandals – List Of Gates Balloons To 129

    By P Gosselin on 7. Dezember 2010

    And as long as the science refuses to clean up its corruption and fraud, many more scandals are sure to join the list in the future..."

    http://notrickszone.com/2010/12/07/climate-science-scandals-list-of-gates-balloons-to-129/

    Complain about this comment

View these comments in RSS

BBC iD

Sign in

BBC navigation

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.