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Top Skeptic, Prominent Scientist Agree on Likely Global Warming Scenario by 2050
CO2 and Climate ^ | May 9, 2004 | Patrick Michaels

Posted on 05/11/2004 7:56:43 AM PDT by cogitator

Observations Not Models

NASA’s James Hansen widely is credited as “the father” of the global warming issue because of his 1988 congressional testimony concerning his detection of a human influence on world climate. His work with a General Circulation Model developed at the Goddard Institute for Space Studies led him to that conclusion, just as GCMs subsequently led others to the offer up “scary scenarios” of our climate future. It is remarkable, then, when Hansen writes in the March 2004 edition of Scientific American (PDF) that the climate change scenarios put forth in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) 2001 Third Assessment Report “may be unduly pessimistic” and that the IPCC extreme scenarios are “implausible.”

In “Defusing the Global Warming Time Bomb” Hansen argues that the observed trends in atmospheric carbon dioxide and methane concentrations for the past several years fall below all IPCC scenarios. As a consequence, he concludes, future temperature rise will most likely be about 0.75ºC over the next fifty years.

In reaching this conclusion, Hansen relies on simple empirical evidence he considers more precise and reliable than model results “because it includes all the processes operating in the real world, even those we have not yet been smart enough to include in the models.” As a consequence, he and the University of Virginia’s Patrick Michaels, a climatologist characterized by many as representing the opposite pole of scientific opinion on this issue, find themselves in agreement.

Michaels, like Hansen, believes the IPCC scenarios in large part overestimate the potential temperature rise in the coming century. And like Hansen, Michaels relies on observations for his insight into future climate behavior. In his 2002 Climate Research paper “Revised 21st century temperature projections,” Michaels writes, “[Observations] are the perfect integrators of all processes that are currently active” and thus avoid the “varying degrees of uncertainties surrounding every aspect of the models.”

Michaels used observations of the rate of the observed buildup of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, along with observations of the global temperature change during the past twenty-five years or so, to determine, “Our adjustments of the projected temperature trends for the 21st century all produce warming trends that cluster in the lower portion of the IPCC TAR range.” Michaels concludes the warming during the next fifty years will be somewhere near 0.75ºC — precisely the conclusion at which Hansen arrived two years later. Sadly, this is where most of the agreement between the two climate researchers ends. Note from the poster: this is double the rate of warming in the 20th century.

Hansen says it is imperative that we undertake concerted and organized efforts to lower this warming rate even further in order to avoid what he describes as “dangerous human interference” with the climate system (thereby echoing the words of the 1989 United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, a/k/a the “Rio Treaty”). He declares the “emphasis should be on mitigating the changes rather than just adapting to them.”

Michaels argues such a likely and modest temperature rise is one to which earth and its inhabitants can readily adapt. He contends it may even offer great advantages — longer growing seasons, reduced heating costs, enhanced global vegetation, and so forth. Because the rate of climate change is manageable, Michaels believes, it isn’t necessary to induce changes in the global energy structure. He advocates allowing market forces to dictate change because fossil fuels are finite and mankind will have to develop alternative energy sources.

How can two scientists who base their conclusion upon a collection of empirical evidence end up so at odds?

Hansen says his biggest concern is the potential for a large rise in sea-level. Yet empirical evidence shows that the rate of sea-level rise over the course of the 20th century (during which there was about 0.75ºC of warming) was about 1.8 mm per year. Therefore the cumulative rise over the past 100 years has been about 7 inches. Double that rate, as implied by a continued steady rise in temperature, and in most places there are no problems that cannot be controlled or adapted to. **see note below in comment

Other lines of evidence demonstrate the potential for positive impacts. Research by Ramakrishna Nemani and colleagues (who studied variations in global vegetation patterns based upon data collected from satellites) shows a remarkable enhancement of the growth of global vegetation. They attribute the growth to two decades of change in the climate and to the increased atmospheric concentration of carbon dioxide, which acts as a plant fertilizer.

The litany of dire consequences that could result from global warming generally is in step with the magnitude of the warming. In the IPCC’s Third Assessment Report the range of potential warming manifest by 2100 is presented as being between 1.4ºC and 5.8ºC. The IPCC does not indicate which value is more likely. However claims of drastic future consequences are based upon the possibility of temperatures ending up on high end of the IPCC range (for instance see the claims made by the environmental organization The Bluewater Network which are reportedly behind some recent climate actions by Senators John McCain (R-AZ) and Ernest Hollings (D-SC), http://www.co2andclimate.org/wca/2004/wca_14c).

If one looks at actual evidence (rather than modeled responses), as do Hansen and Michaels, it is the lower end of the range that is more likely. The impacts associated with warming at the low end of the IPCC TAR range are far less dramatic and infinitely more manageable than those that accompany high-end warming.

It seems about time to dispense with the notion that future warming will be catastrophic and begin to focus on the implications of a modest warming where benefits are likely to outweigh costs.

(click on article link for references)


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial; Government; Miscellaneous; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: change; climate; climatechange; science; skeptic; warming
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Reality meets the road.

I checked the Hansen article to see what he says about glaciers and sea level rise. Here's what he says:

"I argue that the level of dangerous anthropogenic influence likely to be set by the global temperature and planetary radiation imbalance at which substantial deglaciation becomes practically impossible to avoid. Based on the paleoclimate evidence, I suggest that the highest prudent level of additional global warming is not more than about one degree C. This means that additional climate forcing should not exceed about one watt per square meter."

I.e., if it warms to the point that large-scale melting of glaciers and ice sheet commences, we're going to be in trouble.

1 posted on 05/11/2004 7:56:46 AM PDT by cogitator
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To: cogitator
I'll be 96 years old. I don't like hot weather now but my blodd will be thinner then. So I guess I'll be fine.
2 posted on 05/11/2004 8:04:44 AM PDT by Conspiracy Guy (Believe nothing you hear and half of what you see.)
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To: cogitator
With all due respect to Hansen....
B.arbara S.treisand!!!

What forced the climate changes on both ends of the Ice Age???

It is only a man's vanity to believe that he can affect global temperatures one way or another. It is caused by ocean currents, volcanic activity, etc.

Incidentaly, one of the largest contributors to greenhouse gas (methane) is termites.

What does Mr Hansen sugest we do about that? Call Terminex?
3 posted on 05/11/2004 8:06:40 AM PDT by FBD (...Please press 2 for English...for Espanol, please stay on the line...)
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To: FBD
These same type of kook scientist said 50 years ago we'd be dead by now. 50 years from now our kids kids will be hearing the same doom and gloom crap.
4 posted on 05/11/2004 8:12:45 AM PDT by Ron in Acreage
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Comment #5 Removed by Moderator

To: Ron in Acreage
->"These same type of kook scientist said 50 years ago we'd be dead by now. 50 years from now our kids kids will be hearing the same doom and gloom crap."<-

-Exactly. It's all about trying to remove people's freedom to live their lives as they please...under the guise of "saving the planet".

In the end, it's really all about the control of private property, by a bunch of socialist minded busy bodies.
6 posted on 05/11/2004 8:19:47 AM PDT by FBD (...Please press 2 for English...for Espanol, please stay on the line...)
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To: cogitator
The IPCC is a joke and a fraud. Here is a little reality check:

Word from the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) meeting in Shanghai is that the upper range of temperature rise during the next 100 years is nearly 11°F. "This adds impetus for governments of the world to find ways to live up to their commitments . . . to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases," Robert Watson, chairman of the IPCC and former Clinton science advisor, is quoted as saying.

The January 23 edition of The Washington Post put this particular global warming story above the fold on its front page! The play could have been bigger only were it in the upper left-hand corner rather than the right.

Neither the Post nor Watson mentions that this forecast of extreme warming is the result of a computer model. And not just any model, either. It is a product of the most extreme climate model run under the most extreme set of future emission scenarios. In other words, it's not a model based upon present trends; it's a model of a model! Putting a fine point on it, this particular result was produced by one (that's right, one) of 245 models the modelers ran.

From Patrick J. Michaels Ph.D. More info on bad modeling at the link.

In addition to all of this none repeat none of the computer models currently in use can accurately predict the heating that has already occurred when past data is used. In other words if you put in all of the data available up to say 1980 you can not accurately predict the weather as it occurred in 2000.
7 posted on 05/11/2004 8:22:41 AM PDT by Straight Vermonter (06/07/04 - 1000 days since 09/11/01)
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To: cogitator
Some of us will make out, depending on the elevation at which we live at. I'm kinda looking forward to owning beachfront property. :)
8 posted on 05/11/2004 8:26:22 AM PDT by taxed2death (A few billion here, a few trillion there...we're all friends right?)
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To: cogitator
Your bias is showing. The article said:

If one looks at actual evidence (rather than modeled responses), as do Hansen and Michaels, it is the lower end of the range that is more likely. The impacts associated with warming at the low end of the IPCC TAR range are far less dramatic and infinitely more manageable than those that accompany high-end warming.

It seems about time to dispense with the notion that future warming will be catastrophic and begin to focus on the implications of a modest warming where benefits are likely to outweigh costs.

Then you said,

I.e., if it warms to the point that large-scale melting of glaciers and ice sheet commences, we're going to be in trouble.

Give it up. If humans made a maximum effort to reduce production of carbon dioxide, the consequent reduction in heating is so small as to be virtually unmeasurable. Worse, our economic ability to fund the means to accommodate climate variation will have been seriously curtailed. Both humans and nature would be better off if we expend our efforts learning to manage habitat wisely on microscopic bases.

9 posted on 05/11/2004 8:31:05 AM PDT by Carry_Okie (The environment is too complex and too important to be managed by central planning.)
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To: Straight Vermonter
Reams of valuable info on this topic available at Envirotruth.org

THE ENVIROTRUTH: The modern global warming debate was ignited in 1989 when NASA climatologist Dr. James Hansen testified before a joint U.S. House and Senate committee that there was "a strong cause and effect relationship between the current climate" - then a blistering drought - "and human alteration of the atmosphere." His computer models predicted an average global temperature rise of 0.45°C between 1988 and 1997 and 8°C by 2050 due to greenhouse gas build-up. Despite enormous uncertainties in his simulations, it wasn't long before the politically correct view of the future included a global warming catastrophe.

Yet today, Hansen admits that his computer simulations were wrong and that current climate change models are unreliable (see related article by climatologist Dr. Patrick Michaels of the University of Virginia). After the U.S. spent $10 billion on this issue, Hansen wrote in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, "The forces that drive long-term climate changes are not known with an accuracy sufficient to define future climate changes." As more and more variables have been incorporated into the models, the amount of predicted change has decreased. Renowned Columbia University oceanographer/climatologist Dr. Wallace Broecker believes that more than one million variables influence climate change. Although not all are required to reasonably model climate, this fact underlines why contemporary computer simulations are not very accurate.

The problem is also due to the fact that, even though water vapor is the major greenhouse gas, it is essentially ignored by climate models. These simulations are so primitive that they are even unable to determine today's climate when starting with known past temperatures and rates of CO2 level rise.

Dr. Tim Patterson, professor of earth sciences (Paleoclimatology) at Carleton University, explains that, despite these obvious flaws, much of the current debate on global warming has been hijacked by theorists, relying primarily on these inaccurate models but working with little actual data. With the support of biologists, who generally lack a proper understanding of long-term climate dynamics, mass media and government have treated the more extreme of these theoretical scenarios as credible indicators of future environmental change, which they clearly are not.

Dr. Michaels puts the controversy into perspective: “Temperatures measured by surface thermometers have risen about 0.7°C in the last 100 years, but about half of that warming occurred before most changes in atmospheric carbon dioxide. The other half, which has occurred in the last three decades, is often attributed to human causation."

“If this is true, then we have a very good idea of future warming,” says Dr. Michaels. “While global climate models are incapable of predicting the distribution of regional and vertical climate change, they generally agree that once human-induced warming begins, it takes place at a constant (not increasing) rate. This is because the response of temperature to carbon dioxide becomes damped at higher concentrations, while it is generally assumed that the carbon dioxide increase itself is exponential, along with population. The mathematical combination of the two is a straight line.”

Dr. Michaels concludes that the resultant warming predicted by these computer models works out to approximately 1.6°C in the next 100 years. "Half of this amount, in the last 100 years, saw a doubling of life span and a quintupling of crop yields where economic freedom reigned," he says. "There is no reason to expect a sudden turnaround; rather, continued adaptation and prosperity are much more likely."

Dr. Roger Pocklington of the Bedford Institute of Oceanography says, "Professional doomsayers always pick the least likely, upper extremity, of the temperature range for their polemics, never the average." They also never explain that most of the computer models forecast much lower temperatures and that the average of these models is more in the range cited by Dr. Michaels.

Dr. Michaels concludes, "Changes in atmospheric carbon dioxide [the primary driver of temperature change in the computer models] have been much slower than anticipated by virtually all scientists 25 years ago. The increases are so small that they may not even be exponential. This predicts a damping of the already-small warming rate in coming decades."

A good illustration of how poorly today's Global Climate Models (GCMs) perform is obtained by comparing the rise in global average temperatures actually measured over the past two decades with how the GCMs used by the IPCC 'predict' they should have increased. As evident in the following graph (where measured temperature rise is indicated as an averaged trend) even the most conservative of the models used by the IPCC 'predict' significantly greater temperature rises than what actually occurred. How can we put any faith in the IPCC's predictions for the future when their forecasts are based solely on such inaccurate GCMs?


10 posted on 05/11/2004 8:32:40 AM PDT by Straight Vermonter (06/07/04 - 1000 days since 09/11/01)
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To: Straight Vermonter
Patrick Michaels wrote the article I posted.
11 posted on 05/11/2004 8:32:58 AM PDT by cogitator
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To: Carry_Okie
I read Hansen's article in Scientific American, which Hansen mentioned. Michaels' spins it rather adroitly, but it's worth reading what Hansen wrote, too.
12 posted on 05/11/2004 8:34:24 AM PDT by cogitator
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To: Straight Vermonter
Dr. Michaels concludes that the resultant warming predicted by these computer models works out to approximately 1.6°C in the next 100 years.

Yes, that's what he says; this also means about a 0.75 C increase by 2050.

13 posted on 05/11/2004 8:35:55 AM PDT by cogitator
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To: cogitator
I know I am just piling on. LOL
14 posted on 05/11/2004 8:36:07 AM PDT by Straight Vermonter (06/07/04 - 1000 days since 09/11/01)
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To: farmfriend
ping
15 posted on 05/11/2004 8:55:12 AM PDT by Libertarianize the GOP (Ideas have consequences)
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To: cogitator
Yes, that's what he says; this also means about a 0.75 C increase by 2050.

And if we implemented a $600 billion Kyoto plan, that would be 0.74 C.

16 posted on 05/11/2004 9:21:00 AM PDT by balrog666 (So many idiots, so few comets...)
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To: FBD
What forced the climate changes on both ends of the Ice Age???

Changes in solar insolation due to variability in Earth's orbit, inclination, and axial tilt, combined with ocean currents and plate tectonics changing the location of the continents.

Those changes took place over longer time-frames than the Industrial Age (mid 1800s to present) that is the time-frame of concern now.

It is only a man's vanity to believe that he can affect global temperatures one way or another. It is caused by ocean currents, volcanic activity, etc.

While those are certainly important, so is the composition of the atmosphere (which we are changing) and land surface cover. Some recent research indicates that land surface changes dating back to the beginning of agriculture, a couple thousand years ago, may have significantly affected climate.

Incidentaly, one of the largest contributors to greenhouse gas (methane) is termites. What does Mr Hansen sugest we do about that? Call Terminex?

What he suggests is that we don't have to worry about methane emissions right now, because they have declined so substantially in the past five years.

17 posted on 05/11/2004 10:00:41 AM PDT by cogitator
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To: cogitator
Here's the litmus test: Those who really believe that man-made greenhouse gas emissions are going to cause a global warming catastrophe are going to become outspoken, evangelical supporters of replacing all goal/gas/oil power plants with nukes.

Until I see that happen, I'm not going to worry.

18 posted on 05/11/2004 10:04:22 AM PDT by Tribune7
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To: balrog666
And if we implemented a $600 billion Kyoto plan, that would be 0.74 C.

The Kyoto Plan/Protocol is useless as written. Even the signers know it.

The focus here is on the convergence of scientific insight regarding what's likely to happen in the next century. The significance of this article, written by one of the most prominent and well-known global warming skeptics who also happens to be a competent scientist (there are some skeptics who aren't competent scientists, of course) is that there is some agreement beneath all of the back-and-forth rhetoric. The agreement is: the Earth is warming, and will warm at a faster rate in the 21st century than it warmed in the 20th century.

19 posted on 05/11/2004 10:04:38 AM PDT by cogitator
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To: Carry_Okie
If humans made a maximum effort to reduce production of carbon dioxide, the consequent reduction in heating is so small as to be virtually unmeasurable. Worse, our economic ability to fund the means to accommodate climate variation will have been seriously curtailed. Both humans and nature would be better off if we expend our efforts learning to manage habitat wisely on microscopic bases.

Hansen's alternative scenario addresses future increases in atmospheric CO2 via technological advances, which I agree with. The main area of emissions where he thinks control is required is on black soot, not CO2. As for your latter point, I agree that effective habitat management would be a significant boon for several areas of environmental concern.

20 posted on 05/11/2004 10:08:11 AM PDT by cogitator
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To: Straight Vermonter
You can't trust the IPCC. They are paid to produce models which demonstrate global warming. They are not paid to produce models that accurately effect the state of the climate. They are a part of an industry that pays them for a specific product.

They serve the environmental movement and those who support it's beliefs as a customer. They therefore are expected to produce results that conform to the desires of the environmentalists. If the truth contradicts, what the UN Environmental Programme needs to get more funding and generate more interest, the truth will set them free of their jobs.
21 posted on 05/11/2004 10:13:28 AM PDT by .cnI redruM (LA Times = Izvestia West)
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To: cogitator
You can't trust the IPCC. They are paid to produce models which demonstrate global warming. They are not paid to produce models that accurately effect the state of the climate. They are a part of an industry that pays them for a specific product.

They serve the environmental movement and those who support it's beliefs as a customer. They therefore are expected to produce results that conform to the desires of the environmentalists. If the truth contradicts, what the UN Environmental Programme needs to get more funding and generate more interest, the truth will set them free of their jobs.

(I meant to ping you as well when I sent this SV. A penny for your thoughts on the scientific objectivity of the IPCC.)
22 posted on 05/11/2004 10:17:01 AM PDT by .cnI redruM (LA Times = Izvestia West)
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To: cogitator
"While those are certainly important, so is the composition of the atmosphere (which we are changing) and land surface cover. Some recent research indicates that land surface changes dating back to the beginning of agriculture, a couple thousand years ago, may have significantly affected climate."

So what.
One large meteor strike, one large volcanic eruption, one large solar flareup, etc, will have more influence on our atmosphere, than a thousand years of man's influence.

This global warming bloviation is all about trying to restrict OUR private property rights. Do you believe the U.S. should sign the Kyoto treaty, restrict property rights, or regulate the type of vehicle (IE SUV's) we can drive, etc, in the name of "saving the planet"?

23 posted on 05/11/2004 10:24:43 AM PDT by FBD (...Please press 2 for English...for Espanol, please stay on the line...)
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To: cogitator
The beach will be closer!!!!
24 posted on 05/11/2004 10:27:17 AM PDT by bmwcyle (<a href="http://www.johnkerry.com/" target="_blank">miserable failure)
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To: cogitator; Landru
oops, Sorry-I just read your post, in which you acknowlege that the "Kyoto Plan/Protocol is useless as written."

IMO, we have far more important things in life than worrying about the planets temperature changes.

I spend a lot of time in the ocean, friend, and I've seen temp changes of 10 degrees from one day to the next, just because of up welling. I get a little tired of chicken little scientists who have an agenda of obtaining more govt. funding, and in the process, lining their own pockets with these taxpayer funded studies. Hey; if we humans can't affect atmospheric conditions......than who needs the study? See the agenda?

You science guys that look at this planet as if it were some little biosphere bubble, are so narrowly focused, that you can't see the forest for the trees.
-> Which, btw, we have more of today than anytime in history, thanks to modern firefighting techniques.
Regards

25 posted on 05/11/2004 10:50:37 AM PDT by FBD (...Please press 2 for English...for Espanol, please stay on the line...)
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To: FBD
One large meteor strike, one large volcanic eruption, one large solar flareup, etc, will have more influence on our atmosphere, than a thousand years of man's influence.

We can't do anything about circumstances and events that are out of our control. If we got hit by a meteor large enough to cause global climate change, climate change would be the least of our problems. As for volcanoes, change your adjective "large" (Kuwai, Tambora, Krakatoa, Katmai and Pinatubo were "large") to "supermassive" and then you can talk about effects lasting more than a couple of years. Solar flares cause problems; there would have to be a significant change in the total luminosity of the Sun to have a major climate impact. (On that note, you might look up the science fiction story "Inconstant Moon" by Larry Niven.)

This global warming bloviation is all about trying to restrict OUR private property rights. Do you believe the U.S. should sign the Kyoto treaty, restrict property rights, or regulate the type of vehicle (IE SUV's) we can drive, etc, in the name of "saving the planet"?

No.

I believe we should respond appropriately.

Appropriately means first recognizing that there is a situation requiring a response. I believe that the scientific understanding of the climate changes occurring now is at that stage. The second step is formulating appropriate response strategies. In my opinion, that is what we -- the United States, other countries -- should be doing now. As more data is gathered, as the science continues to improve, selection of the final set of response strategies to implement will be facilitated. Implementation is the third step. Evaluation of the implementation effectiveness is the fourth step; modifications to the iniitial implementation would be the fifth step. And so on.

26 posted on 05/11/2004 10:51:23 AM PDT by cogitator
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To: FBD
I spend a lot of time in the ocean, friend, and I've seen temp changes of 10 degrees from one day to the next, just because of up welling.

Have you ever seen a coral bleaching event?

Coral Bleaching and Mass Bleaching Events

Do you think that we should be concerned about these events? The increasing incidence of such events? The possible cause of this increasing incidence? The rapid decline of many of the world's coral reef areas?

If you think there is reason for concern here, then we may agree about a lot more than you think we do.

27 posted on 05/11/2004 10:56:23 AM PDT by cogitator
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To: .cnI redruM
They are not paid to produce models that accurately effect the state of the climate.

If they are deliberately skewing their models by introducing spurious factors, there will be an outcry in the scientific community sooner or later. It would be a huge scandal comparable to the N-ray scandal.

28 posted on 05/11/2004 11:00:12 AM PDT by RightWhale (Destroy the dark; restore the light)
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To: RightWhale
I doubt it. The modern scientific establishment is too fundamentally dishonest and politicized to expose them.
29 posted on 05/11/2004 11:02:25 AM PDT by .cnI redruM (Training doesn't give you common sense or respect for human dignity.)
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To: Conspiracy Guy
Just think, if you live within about 100 feet altitude from the oceans you might be able to retire with water front views. Also, with oil running out, global warming doesn't seem to be too bad. Hey, just think of the savings when one doesn't have to buy oil to heat with.

I also thought, wouldn't this be a solution to over population, as most of the worlds population live in port cities? Seems to me that the liberals would be all for population control.

In reality, nobody truly knows what will be 50 years from now let alone, next week. If they did they would be at the casino or race track.
30 posted on 05/11/2004 11:03:11 AM PDT by Final Authority
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To: cogitator
Excellent article.

It's the wrong question to ask "is there global warning?"
The right question to ask is 'what is the real impact and effect, and how can you be sure the predictions are real?'

The science has been exagerrated and politicized on the IPCC so that impacts and models are made to be worse than reality.


31 posted on 05/11/2004 11:03:46 AM PDT by WOSG (http://freedomstruth.blogspot.com - I salute our brave fallen.)
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To: .cnI redruM
The modern scientific establishment is too fundamentally dishonest and politicized

They are always enthusiastically trying to trip each other up. There is one rule in this game: you must be able to defend your assertion.

32 posted on 05/11/2004 11:08:36 AM PDT by RightWhale (Destroy the dark; restore the light)
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To: FBD
"(On that note, you might look up the science fiction story "Inconstant Moon" by Larry Niven.)" Cogitator

And I'm suppoised to enter into a serious discussion with this one, eh?

No thanks my friend, but don't let that stop you.

...sounds like you've time to kill. :o)

33 posted on 05/11/2004 11:11:48 AM PDT by Landru (Indulgences: 2 for a buck.)
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To: RightWhale
Back when the IPCC was sending out classroom kits in 1996, they were claiming that the Earth was warming at a rate of 6C/ Century. Those kits are still out there being used in high school classrooms all over the US. I guarantee you that the refutations of these wild claims made it no further than very densely-worded and technical AGU Journals.
34 posted on 05/11/2004 11:11:48 AM PDT by .cnI redruM (Training doesn't give you common sense or respect for human dignity.)
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To: WOSG
The right question to ask is 'what is the real impact and effect, and how can you be sure the predictions are real?'

I agree with your statement. Glad you liked the article.

35 posted on 05/11/2004 11:16:26 AM PDT by cogitator
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To: .cnI redruM
I look at science as a thing in itself, and those who do science as scientists. Educators, politicians, publishers, greenies, all these people on the periphery of science are not scientists and are not doing science. Science is being used for other ends, no doubt about it. The climate models are good, I think, and I know a little about them, but that they are being used for something other than science is a reflection on some educators, politicians, publishers, and greenies rather than on scientists or science.
36 posted on 05/11/2004 11:17:39 AM PDT by RightWhale (Destroy the dark; restore the light)
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To: cogitator
Hansen says his biggest concern is the potential for a large rise in sea-level. Yet empirical evidence shows that the rate of sea-level rise over the course of the 20th century (during which there was about 0.75ºC of warming) was about 1.8 mm per year

I am wondering what is the source of Hansen's information. The most detailed report I've read on sea level change have concluded that a significant measurement of sea level change will not be obtained until 2030. Previous reports of sea level changes did not account for changes in land elevation due to tectonics, and were complicated by sea level changes due to such effects as El Nino.

37 posted on 05/11/2004 11:23:37 AM PDT by kidd
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To: RightWhale; .cnI redruM
If they are deliberately skewing their models by introducing spurious factors, there will be an outcry in the scientific community sooner or later.

That would depend on what you mean by "spurious". The IPCC has described its modeling procedure pretty well; the upper-range estimates have been obtained by taking out some negative feedback factors in some models. They evaluate a range of models to come up with a range of climate scenarios, and then the evaluate the consequences of those possibilities.

The media alarmists tend to glom onto the worst-case scenarios and present them as if they were the likeliest scenarios -- which isn't the case. But "moderate changes" don't make stories that lots of people will read. So there really isn't a scandal here (nor is there a deliberate attempt to skew the science) -- the name of the IPCC game is to evaluate the broadest possible set of circumstances, and then propose various ways to address different sets of circumstances.

Of course, members of the IPCC community have seized upon particular aspects of the reports and used them to push their own agendas. Not much can be done about that.

38 posted on 05/11/2004 11:24:06 AM PDT by cogitator
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To: RightWhale
While I will admit that there is a philosophical appeal to washing one's hands of the grubby strap-hangers and practicing science from a moral standpoint of altitude and distance, there is a point where rubber meets the road. The findings of scientists go through a process of data reduction similar to what happens when an empiricist actually measures something. That data has to be changed in form several times, before that data can be useful to the people fronting the $$ to acquire the information.

A scientists bears a personal moral responsibility for what happens to his data, with his name and prestige staked to it, once it gets published in a refereed journal. If the scientist turns a blind eye or doesn't deign to concern himself with what the lesser beings do with that scientific truth, that scientist is morally and professionally negligent.

I believe that the field of environmental science in particular, and much of science in general, has been overrun by people who intentionally and professionally misuse data to procure political and social propaganda. The scientist who watches that happen and then fails to throw the big red BS flag, has performed a regrettable error of omission.
39 posted on 05/11/2004 11:33:30 AM PDT by .cnI redruM (Training doesn't give you common sense or respect for human dignity.)
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To: kidd
Hansen's SciAM article does not have those numbers. Michaels quoted them from somewhere else. Hansen expresses a concern about potential destabilization of the large ice sheets and relates this to the current amount of radiative forcing in the Earth climate system. Michaels argues around what Hansen is saying in the article; the current rate of sea level rise is minimal (and confirmed by satellite altimetry), but increasing temperatures could initiate a major change whose outcome could still be centuries in the future. Quoting:

"The main issue is: How fast will ice sheets respond to global warming? The IPCC calculates only a slight change in the ice sheets in 100 years; however, the IPCC calculations include only the gradual effects of changes in snowfall, evaporation and melting. In the real world, ice-sheet disintegration is driven by highly nonlinear processes and feedbacks. The peak rate of deglaciation following the last ice age was a sustained rate of melting of more than 14,000 cubic kilometers a year—about one meter of sea-level rise every 20 years, which was maintained for several centuries. This period of most rapid melt coincided, as well as can be measured, with the time of most rapid warming. Given the present unusual global warming rate on an already warm planet, we can anticipate that areas with summer melt and rain will expand over larger areas of Greenland and fringes of Antarctica. Rising sea level itself tends to lift marine ice shelves that buttress land ice, unhinging them from anchor points. As ice shelves break up, this accelerates movement of land ice to the ocean. Although building of glaciers is slow, once an ice sheet begins to collapse, its demise can be spectacularly rapid. . . . These considerations do not mean that we should expect large sea-level change in the next few years. Preconditioning of ice sheets for accelerated breakup may require a long time, perhaps many centuries."

40 posted on 05/11/2004 11:34:26 AM PDT by cogitator
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To: cogitator
I am viewing this climate debate with some amusement. 40 years ago I was working for one of the scientists who was developing climate models. I could have stayed in that field and made a career of it. But now here we are looking at Mars, or some of us are anyway. What are we going to do about Mars? Terraform of course, can't just leave all that real estate undeveloped going to waste. So we are going to terraform Mars, but aren't real sure what effect we might be having on earth's climate. It's Keystone Cops down here.
41 posted on 05/11/2004 11:36:07 AM PDT by RightWhale (Destroy the dark; restore the light)
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To: cogitator
>>>>>Of course, members of the IPCC community have seized upon particular aspects of the reports and used them to push their own agendas. Not much can be done about that.

A great deal can be done about that. The people who intentionally use the IPCC reports as a source of propaganda can be revealed for being the prostitutes that they are. Practicing science with a moral prospective of altitude and distance does not ultimately serve the public which invariably gets taxed to pay the salary of the climate scientist.
42 posted on 05/11/2004 11:37:27 AM PDT by .cnI redruM (Training doesn't give you common sense or respect for human dignity.)
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To: .cnI redruM
If the scientist turns a blind eye or doesn't deign to concern himself with what the lesser beings do with that scientific truth, that scientist is morally and professionally negligent.

Good point. There is kind of an awakening to the utility of ethics these days. Scientists probably don't study much philosophy while they are getting their academic credentials and so don't become fully aware of their responsibilities until the real world intrudes. There has been some neglect there, and eventually neglect will demand payment.

43 posted on 05/11/2004 11:42:37 AM PDT by RightWhale (Destroy the dark; restore the light)
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To: cogitator
"....aerosols...could decrease the mean surface by as much as 3.5K degrees. If sustained over a period of several years, such a temperature decrease could be sufficient to trigger an ice age."
-
Stephan Schneider- Atmospheric scientist at the National Center for Atmospheric Research , (1971)

"A majority believe that the longer trend will be downward."
- U of Wisconsin climatologist Reid Bryson, in his 1976 preface to Lowell Ponte's book :'The Cooling'

44 posted on 05/11/2004 11:45:15 AM PDT by FBD (...Please press 2 for English...for Espanol, please stay on the line...)
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To: cogitator; RightWhale
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1133483/posts

An example of what scientists need to debunk, IMHO. Yes, I've heard all the quotes about the truth being protected by a vanguard of lies, but at least lets tell some lies that aren't outrageous to the point where they cheapen and demean the scientific disciplines like a case of VD.
45 posted on 05/11/2004 11:46:41 AM PDT by .cnI redruM (Training doesn't give you common sense or respect for human dignity.)
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To: Landru
Ya got me again.

:^D
46 posted on 05/11/2004 11:54:54 AM PDT by FBD (...Please press 2 for English...for Espanol, please stay on the line...)
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To: cogitator
This period of most rapid melt coincided, as well as can be measured, with the time of most rapid warming.

It sounds as if Micheals is being disengenuous, but this statement by Hansen is disingenuous as well. This period of most rapid melt also occurred when glacial ice was located as far south as the Washington DC region and is not applicable to the present day scenario where glacial ice is found only in Greenland and Antarctica. And rapid desalination of the North Atlantic from this melting of mid-latitude glaciers would have accelerated the warming/melting of glacial ice. Also not applicable to present day scenarios - but Hansen implies that the present day warming trend will similarily affect near-polar region glaciers.

47 posted on 05/11/2004 11:55:31 AM PDT by kidd
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To: cogitator
I'll check this link out later, FRiend.
Thanks.
Regards
48 posted on 05/11/2004 11:56:42 AM PDT by FBD (...Please press 2 for English...for Espanol, please stay on the line...)
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To: .cnI redruM
Even Art Bell says the movie is a stretch. If Sagan were here, I'd bet he would debunk the movie. I have been in 80 below weather and I didn't flash freeze, but I am not a credentialed meteorologist or climatologist so my opinion counts for little. Frankly, I doubt that many moviegoers will be swayed by this piece of cinematic art. Where scientists ought to step in is where international treaties and national programs are created. Some say, "Something ought to be done." Somebody ought to say, "Why? And what? Just do something, anything?" Dumping your money into a bottomless pit is something alright.
49 posted on 05/11/2004 12:00:32 PM PDT by RightWhale (Destroy the dark; restore the light)
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To: cogitator
>>>>>>>Those changes took place over longer time-frames than the Industrial Age (mid 1800s to present) that is the time-frame of concern now.

As they used to say in the Hertz commercials....not exactly. Chapter 1 of "A Distant Mirror", a history of 14th Century France authored by Barbara Tuchman, makes the exact opposite point regarding temperature decreases in the Late 13th and Early 14th Centuries that significantly altered the growing seasons and biotic potential of agriculture in Northern France.

Tuchman posits a domino effect starting with climactic change which leads to lowered harvests. This than causes malnutrition which degrades the immune systems of people than living in Norman France. This lowered immunity than makes the people susceptible to the diseases carried by travelers and traders traveling frequently between Isle De France and Calais.

Tuchman points out explicitly that these people had probably been exposed to at least some vector carrying a disease similar to Bubonic Plague since trade had returned to the North of France has a positive aftereffect of the nascent Italian Renaissance.

It's only through planting the axiom of weakened human immunity, brought about by sudden and accelerated negative forcing, that explains why 1/3 of the population of Northern France would suddenly succumb to a disease that they previously resisted by-and-large for the better part of a century.
50 posted on 05/11/2004 12:04:20 PM PDT by .cnI redruM (Training doesn't give you common sense or respect for human dignity.)
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