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Awake2Chaos

Global Warming: Real vs. Fake

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So I'm reading around the interwebs and came across an article on aol, and the commentors were arguing back and forth about global warming.

http://www.aol.com/article/2014/02/14/the-great-lakes-are-almost-completely-covered-with-ice/20830737/?icid=maing-grid7%7Cmain5%7Cdl1%7Csec1_lnk2%26pLid%3D443147

I have seen random documentaries over the years about global warming, and done some reading supporting the theory. For example:

http://climate.nasa.gov/evidence

The evidence has always struck me as compelling, so I was genuinely surprised to see people who call it a hoax.

What do you guys and gals think? Do you consider global warming a real phenomenon, or is it just normal flux of the Earth's climate cycles?

I'm really interested to see what you all think, and learn something new, so teach me!

A2C

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Well, if GW does exist it doesn't really matter if it's man-made, natural or a combination.

I would suggest the phenomenon is real, that warming is happening, and that human activities are a factor in it's rate of increase.

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So I'm reading around the interwebs and came across an article on aol, and the commentors were arguing back and forth about global warming.

http://www.aol.com/a...nk2&pLid=443147

I have seen random documentaries over the years about global warming, and done some reading supporting the theory. For example:

http://climate.nasa.gov/evidence

The evidence has always struck me as compelling, so I was genuinely surprised to see people who call it a hoax.

What do you guys and gals think? Do you consider global warming a real phenomenon, or is it just normal flux of the Earth's climate cycles?

I'm really interested to see what you all think, and learn something new, so teach me!

A2C

Speaking as a dendrochronologist (someone who studies tree rings) and a climate scientist: it is no hoax. It is dead-certain that the earth is getting warmer. I have posted the URLs to the datasets on UM before; I'll be glad to do it again. The causes are well-known: increasing CO2 and other greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, mostly the result of burning of fossil fuels. The long-term consequences remain uncertain, but no matter how you cut it, the results won't be to our liking. The poisoning of the planet is a concomitant problem; the two interact and jointly threaten our very existence on this planet. Can I be clearer than that?

Doug

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Speaking as a dendrochronologist (someone who studies tree rings) and a climate scientist: it is no hoax. It is dead-certain that the earth is getting warmer. I have posted the URLs to the datasets on UM before; I'll be glad to do it again. The causes are well-known: increasing CO2 and other greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, mostly the result of burning of fossil fuels. The long-term consequences remain uncertain, but no matter how you cut it, the results won't be to our liking. The poisoning of the planet is a concomitant problem; the two interact and jointly threaten our very existence on this planet. Can I be clearer than that?

Doug

That is absolutely fascinating. I would love to know how you got into that line of work.

Can they link the buring of fossil fuels to warming directly? Or is it a supposition? (i.e. could the earth be warming to the degree that it is if we weren't buring fossil fuels?)

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This is a video my NASA that shows shows how much the world has warmed up over the last 130 years. Notice towards the end there's red showing up much more. I'm sure the Earth goes through natural warming trends but this time I think we are giving it a big boost. Maybe parts of the world have been cold this winter but parts have been unusually hot. Look at all the rain England has been getting. Something is going on. Even if its partly caused by natural occurrences we don't need to be contributing to it and making it worse like we have.

http://www.salon.com/2014/01/22/watch_the_world_get_progressively_warmer_over_130_years/

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The earth does have natural heating and cooling of the planet. But there is no doubt that us putting all the junk into the atmosphere is not helping.

Glaciers all around the world are shrinking, receding, and completely disappearing. In the documentary 'Chasing Ice' there's a bunch of really good points showing this. That these massive glaciers shrunk only a little over a hundred years, but then shrunk twice that much in the past few years. So the earth is heating up.

Even if global warming is a myth, pollutants aren't good for the planet and for nature. We need to change our ways.

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The poisoning of the planet and destruction of entire eco-systems by humanity is a problem whether you believe it is contributing to climate change or not. We are behaving in a morally bereft manner to the species we share this planet with and that is going to have consequences. How well science understands and is able to convey these consequences to the masses is the only real issue. People are happy to ignore their own corrupt practices regardless of the cost to others - let's deal with that and see if it can make the world a better place for all flora and fauna we share it with as well as for each other.

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That is absolutely fascinating. I would love to know how you got into that line of work.

I spent thirty years as a forester then my job got cut to balance the state's budget. So I decided to go back to school. The university had only two programs related to what I wanted to do: Agricultural Economics and Environmental Science. ES was the better fit. About the time I started working at the university, we had a monster ice storm tear up one of our on-going experiments. So I decided to study the effects of ice storms on tree ring thickness. And that's how.

Can they link the buring of fossil fuels to warming directly? Or is it a supposition? (i.e. could the earth be warming to the degree that it is if we weren't buring fossil fuels?)

You might call it circumstantial evidence: there's no other source of carbon in the air that even comes close. And at that, only half of what we're producing is ending up in the air - the rest is going into the oceans.

Doug

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I have always been of the mind, given all the evidence, circumstantial or not, that our output of pollution had to have an impact on the climate cycles of earth.

I was honestly taken aback to see people state that it wasn't possible, or that they thought that global warming was a conspiracy theory.

I know here in the North, the winters and summers have changed just in the 7 years we've been here. Winters have colder snaps, summers have gotten progressively hotter. I know it's not my imagination because other folks that live up here have expressed the same concerns.

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Meh were at the ending stages of our solar maximum, which is a 11 year cycle? Data accumulation blah blah you've heard it before. Fact is our earth's venting system along with the natural decay of life dwarfs all other aspects of environmental influences. If anything our biggest influence has been the disruption of the balance in the cycle of life.

The other wordly sudden changes in our climate through history like ice ages for example are caused by massive volcanic eruptions that blanket the sun. The biggest argument for greenhouse gas levels rising are ice samples that can be carbon dated hundreds of thousands of years. Well these greenhouse gases are lighter then water and would be naturally pushed out to make room for denser matter. Results may vary ;P

Repopulation takes time and when there is a surplus of say co2 which is an energy source for numerous microbes, bacteria and plants feed off this and reproduce until the food dwindles and they die off again, there is a scientific term for this where predator's population vary up and down depending on there food supply. Jesus take the wheeel!

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Meh were at the ending stages of our solar maximum, which is a 11 year cycle? Data accumulation blah blah you've heard it before. Fact is our earth's venting system along with the natural decay of life dwarfs all other aspects of environmental influences. If anything our biggest influence has been the disruption of the balance in the cycle of life.

The other wordly sudden changes in our climate through history like ice ages for example are caused by massive volcanic eruptions that blanket the sun. The biggest argument for greenhouse gas levels rising are ice samples that can be carbon dated hundreds of thousands of years. Well these greenhouse gases are lighter then water and would be naturally pushed out to make room for denser matter. Results may vary ;P

Repopulation takes time and when there is a surplus of say co2 which is an energy source for numerous microbes, bacteria and plants feed off this and reproduce until the food dwindles and they die off again, there is a scientific term for this where predator's population vary up and down depending on there food supply. Jesus take the wheeel!

The solar cycle is well modelled within the predictions - current events are only partially influenced by the solar cycle.

Mans CO2 emissions dwarf the natural ones, which though in absolute terms are larger they are largely in balance (ie no net flux into the atmosphere from natural systems), and this is clearly demonstrated by the rise in atmospheric CO2 levels on a year on year basis. If the natural systems were not in balance we would arrive at a venus like atmosphere - which we clearly never have.

Ice ages are driven by slow changes in orbital cycles between the earth and the sun, as such they are highly predictable. Volcanic eruptions can cause temporary (1-100years) dips in global temperatures if they are large enough, but have never caused a real ice age to happen. At the end of the Jurassic period it is suspected that plate tectonics caused sustained volcanic eruptions over centuries (clash of continental plates like at the pacific rim but on a much larger scale) which poisoned the atmosphere causing CO2 induced global warming and a mass extinction event.

CO2 is not the only nutrient within the system and other micronutrients such as phosphate are rate limiting on the ability of natural systems to absorb CO2. In short, there is only so much CO2 that the natural system can sink and it is not keeping pace with the anthropogenic emissions which are accumulating in the oceans and atmosphere.

You should fact check your scientific sources.

Br Cornelius

Edited by Br Cornelius
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I am not a scientist, so I hesitate to jump into this pool of great minds at odds with each other. I could google night and day to come up with data that supports either side. That's been done. The same with quoting experts, they too disagree. What I think we do know is that climate changes over time, that ice ages occur at regular intervals, that warming occurs in between. Given a cycle of about 26,000 years and given that the last ice age ended about 11,000 years ago, we should still be on the ascendant side of a warming trend for another 2,000 years or so. So yes, global warming is real. Until the Earth starts cooling again, gradually slipping into the next ice age. Since this cycle has existed since before the dawn of man I have my doubts about whether we could be the cause. But say we are. Man's progress has always exceeded his ability to plan for the future. Even the most ardent believers of man as the cause of global warming, those who are willing to curtail our current standard of living to effect a reversal, do so for the benefit of future generations and do not expect to benefit from their actions. I believe that the natural progress of future generations will make anything we do today futile, regardless of which side is right in the debate over climate change. A mere two centuries ago, give or take, our forefathers laid out a plan for good governance. It still works, though it's starting to unravel just a bit. But had they tried to provide for our economic well being, even through deprivation to themselves, they would have tried to ensure that we had an endless supply of sail cloth and feed for our horses. Perhaps they would have rationed shoe leather and beaver pelts for our benefit. They could not have foreseen that the essentials of their time would be obsolete in ours. We are no better at envisioning the future. So we can tax ourselves back into the stone age. We can limit our enterprise through the rationing of fossil fuels. We can cause untold hardship on everyone living today in our attempt to change the climate of the future by a degree or two and it will all be for naught. Because while our intent may be pure our vision is flawed. In the centuries between now and when we might reasonably expect results there will be discoveries that will render all of our efforts useless. So while we now debate whether man is the cause of global warming, and whether he will be the solution, I believe only one thing to be certain and that is that it will not be us, the living of today, that will provide the answer. Future generations may discover that our assumptions were false. No doubt fossil fuels will become obsolete long before they run out or before their use causes irreversible effects. So our debate is moot. We propose to cause real harm to the living to provide no tangible benefit to those yet to come. We would better serve humanity by using the resources available to us today to accelerate the progress that will be their ultimate salvation.

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Years ago I was in the store picking up a tube of "Preparation - H" when I noticed a warning label "Do not take orally !" and I thought to my self then that some day we were going to have to pay for saving all the cerebrally challenged. Now look at it, over population has someone else breathing my air, all those extra bodies generating all that excess heat, and the pollution ! Why it was only a matter of time until mother nature decided to start scratching back like a hound with fleas.

Edited by Forever Cursed

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Awake2, Climate change is real, it's always been real and it's been going on since before men walked the earth. Nobody denies this. Wht's being denied is that humans are the primary driving force behind climate change. I think not so I would be classified by many to be a denier. Hope that clears it up a bit.

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Big Jim, temperatures peaked a few hundred years after the last ice age. Ever since they were on a slow decline into the next ice age which should have occurred about 10,000 years hence. We reversed that trend with a dramatic upward temperature since industrialization. We had long since passed the temperature optimum of this interglacial.

If you don't get your basic facts straight you are inclined to go off at a false tangent.

Br Cornelius

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You know what peeves me off? People who wail about how the planet is dying, crap on about how "mother nature" is rebelling against the mistreatment of "her" (why people feel a desire to personify the environment, make it a sentient being capable of revenge I don't know). And what do they do about it?

So you separate your recyclables from your garbage. Congratulations. You turn your lights off one night a year for earth hour. Big whoop. Does this really make a difference? A minimal difference, but it makes you feel all warm and fuzzy inside, so that's ok. But we're not ready to give up our computer and mobile phone, or our prefab houses with climate control, and our fashionable clothing. Who really cares about the highly polluting factories that these consumer items comes from, so long as we show indignation from our high horse when someone dares to ask the unpopular questions about humankind's contribution to climate change.

If humankind is screwing up the planet, the only way to avert disaster is for a massive, wholesale change in culture and society. And that, I'm afraid, simply won't happen unless there is some kind of apocalyptic event that brings humankind to its knees.

Edited by avs76
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You know what peeves me off? People who wail about how the planet is dying, crap on about how "mother nature" is rebelling against the mistreatment of "her" (why people feel a desire to personify the environment, make it a sentient being capable of revenge I don't know). And what do they do about it?

So you separate your recyclables from your garbage. Congratulations. You turn your lights off one night a year for earth hour. Big whoop. Does this really make a difference? A minimal difference, but it makes you feel all warm and fuzzy inside, so that's ok. But we're not ready to give up our computer and mobile phone, or our prefab houses with climate control, and our fashionable clothing. Who really cares about the highly polluting factories that these consumer items comes from, so long as we show indignation from our high horse when someone dares to ask the unpopular questions about humankind's contribution to climate change.

If humankind is screwing up the planet, the only way to avert disaster is for a massive, wholesale change in culture and society. And that, I'm afraid, simply won't happen unless there is some kind of apocalyptic event that brings humankind to its knees.

most of these are only in our control through the influence we bring to bare on our governments and supply chains. This is a parallel approach to doing things personally. The changes can be made - Germany already obtains about 50% of its electricity from renewables.

Bleating about how we can't do anything is playing into the hands of the vested interests who don't want us to do anything. Its been proud of living in denial of the upcoming reality.

There are huge changes needed - but ultimately it is society on a planetary level which must make them and last time I looked you are society.

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If humankind is screwing up the planet, the only way to avert disaster is for a massive, wholesale change in culture and society. And that, I'm afraid, simply won't happen unless there is some kind of apocalyptic event that brings humankind to its knees.

Many of the called-for changes are gradually being implemented. Coal is being phased out because it is more expensive than any other energy source. Wind is being phased in because it is cheaper (and is immune to price spikes) than anything except gas-fired turbines and it is neck-and-neck with them. Once wind powers the grid we can start using electric cars (and get a fillup for about 50 cents instead of $50. Big oil sees the handwriting on the wall and is fighting to forestall its own demise by putting out propaganda like you've been reading.

But Big Oil need not worry. These are energy companies, not just oil companies. As the economy moves to green energy, so will they. And they'll be the ones selling green energy. And we'll all still be their customers.

Doug

Edited by Doug1o29
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For all the attacks on Climate Science, I have never once seen a denier contest two things - the Greenhouse effect and the increase of CO2 in the atmosphere. If the latter continues to increase the former will warm the Earth - fact. It doesn't matter that Arctic ice made massive gains in 2013 - the root problem is still there.

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For all the attacks on Climate Science, I have never once seen a denier contest two things - the Greenhouse effect and the increase of CO2 in the atmosphere. If the latter continues to increase the former will warm the Earth - fact. It doesn't matter that Arctic ice made massive gains in 2013 - the root problem is still there.

The gains quoted are relative to its absolutely disastrous low the year previously - the actual absolute gains were small. Its still on schedule to be ice free in the summer by 2035.

Br Cornelius

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By the summer of 2035. Thank God, I should be dead by then. So bring it on !

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The gains quoted are relative to its absolutely disastrous low the year previously - the actual absolute gains were small. Its still on schedule to be ice free in the summer by 2035.

Br Cornelius

Precisely, that's something no one seemed to mention when they go on about the gains in Arctic ice. It was substantial and unexpected but it wasn't a return to it's previous level. One thing it tells me is that it's difficult to create accurate models of what the future will look like in such a dynamic system as the Earth's climate but that is a human failing, it's impossible to be include all the factors in climate models. However the underlying cause is still as important as ever and I'm very much aware that singular instances like that don't counter the arguments put forth by Climatologists. Someone can claim that massive blizzards in the US disproves global warming, and I can claim that ten days of 40 degree(celsius, the sensible measurement of heat) in South Australia proves it. In the end they are both anecdotes and not science.

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Big Jim, temperatures peaked a few hundred years after the last ice age. Ever since they were on a slow decline into the next ice age which should have occurred about 10,000 years hence. We reversed that trend with a dramatic upward temperature since industrialization. We had long since passed the temperature optimum of this interglacial.

If you don't get your basic facts straight you are inclined to go off at a false tangent.

Br Cornelius

You and I both put out undocumented data. It's no surprise that you prefer yours, even though you include much that is speculation. Be that as it may, it was never my intention to argue about the facts. The truth is what it is even if we are never aware of it. My contention in my original post was that whatever the cause of global warming may be, we do not know the ways that future generations will invent or discover to deal with it. Whatever we do is likely to be futile and misguided. But I would like to respond directly to one point you raise and that is the "temperature optimum". Or optimum temperature, if you prefer. I have never known two people to agree on the optimum temperature of a single room or abode. The Earth is home to polar bears and penguins, alligators and iguanas. We know that in the past it has been home to dinosaurs and mammoths in places that would now be inhospitable to either one. The "optimum temperature" therefore would depend on who you ask and where you are and what century you're in. In the all out effort to reverse global warming, who gets to decide what the final setting of the thermostat will be? Is there any chance we could be wrong? Since change is constant, with or without our influence, whatever is decided upon as the optimum temperature will not last. It will begin changing as soon as it is reached.

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In the all out effort to reverse global warming, who gets to decide what the final setting of the thermostat will be? Is there any chance we could be wrong?

The best choice: don't change it by artificial means. Let Ma Nature do the changing.

BUT: It's already too late for that. So the question is how to minimize ecosystem impact. It doesn't really matter what the temperature is - but it matters a whole lot what things can survive in it. It's not about comfort. It's about keeping as many species as possible alive and healthy - and ultimately, that means us.

Doug

P.S.: Don't argue with a scientist if you don't like numbers. Especially, don't argue with one with a degree in biometrics.

Doug

Edited by Doug1o29

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BigJim.

Temperature optima is not a qualitive term, it is a technical term used to describe the peak temperature in a variable profile.

The temperature profile since the last ice age, not subject to opinion.

hockeystick-marcott_mann2008.png?w=500&h=630

As I said you should check your facts before forming an opinion otherwise you will generally be wrong in your conclusions.

Br Cornelius

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