Skip to comments.We aren't changing climate (N.C. Sen. Robert Pittenger gets it)
Posted on 02/07/2006 8:58:03 AM PST by DaveLoneRanger
Let's avoid snap judgments and wishful thinking on warming trend
From N.C. Sen. Robert Pittenger, a Charlotte Republican and member of the N.C. Legislative Commission on Global Climate Change:
The Jan. 15 article "Melting Arctic worries scientists" fails to place the warming of the Earth within the context of an ever-changing cyclical pattern of warming and cooling.
A study by Jager and Barry from 1990 found that over the past 1 million years, there have been eight periods of glaciers and ice caps advancing and retreating -- all of this occurring without automobile and power plant pollution from humans.
In fact, on a much smaller scale, there is evidence of warming and cooling every 1,500 years (United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 2001a:2.4.2). Typically, proponents of global warming point to the past century following the increase in carbon emissions from the Industrial Revolution to present time and blame humans solely for the increase in temperatures. However, from 1860 to 1940 the climate warmed, followed by a cooling period from 1940 to 1975, and subsequently has warmed since then (Fred Singer, "Climate Policy from Rio to Kyoto"). Supporters of global warming have been unable to explain this cooling during a period of economic growth and increased output of carbon emissions.
While the Earth is currently warming, the real question that should be asked is, "Can we do anything about it?" The answer is very little, since this cycle was occurring prior to the first human civilizations.
While it is understood that human carbon emissions have a small effect on global climate, the computer models predicting global flooding and catastrophes rely on numerous variables that can greatly affect the long- term temperature change estimates, particularly particles, water vapor and clouds.
Particles, or aerosols, tend to have a cooling effect as solar energy is reflected back into space. Increased water vapor as a result of higher temperatures tends to enhance global warming if the lower atmosphere warms up, though satellite data has shown no such warming to date. Clouds can either cool or warm the climate depending on their composition and led the United Nations IPCC to state that "clouds represent a significant source of potential error in climate simulations."
These three variables combined make it extremely difficult to argue for significant carbon emission reductions, which will have enormous negative economic impact on developed and developing countries -- all based on estimates for 100 years in the future. We must also consider the costs of diverting vital resources from important issues like feeding the world's poor and providing ample water supply to emerging countries, which is the most important factor to impact world health. Contrary to the wishful thinking of those who believe we can alter climate change, such an emphasis could adversely affect critical world issues. The billions and by some estimates even trillions that it would cost society to cut carbon emissions would have a minute effect on projected global climate change while diverting our resources from more important issues at hand.
I suggest that serious students of global climate change consider reading "The Skeptical Environmentalist" by Bjorn Lomborg, a statistician, former member of Greenpeace and associate professor of statistics at the University of Arhus, Denmark. While some analysts look only at limited periods of time in their evaluations, Lomborg provides analytical support of trends covering hundreds and thousands of years.
He sure does, bless'em. But no one knows who he is outside of NC(one of my very favorties states, btw).
Earth gets all its energy from the Sun and it is the Sun's energy that keeps Earth warm. But the amount of energy Earth receives is not always the same. Changes in the Sun and changes in Earth's orbit affect the amount of energy that reaches the Earth.
The 11-Year Solar Cycle
When the Sun has fewer sunspots, it gives off less energy, less energy makes its way to Earth, and our planet cools down. More than three hundred years ago, when the climate was cooler for a time called the "Little Ice Age", people noticed there were no sunspots for several decades. Over time, scientists have noticed a pattern in the number of sunspots. About every 11 years the number of sunspots reaches a high and then decreases again.
Over thousands of years, changes in Earth's orbit cause changes in the amount of the Sun's energy that gets to the planet. Over the past several million years these changes have caused cycles of global warming and cooling.
There are three ways that Earth's orbit changes over time.
Eccentricity: The shape of Earth's orbit around the Sun becomes slightly more and then less oval every 100,000 years.
Precession: Earth wobbles on it axis as it spins, completing a full wobble every 23,000 years.
Tilt: The angle of the Earth's axis relative to the plane of its orbit changes about three degrees every 41,000 years.
These two figures show former temperatures with major periods of glaciation labeled. The dashed lines are the present global average temperature of about 15° C (59° F). Thus the solid curves show small changes from this average; note that the temperature drops only about 5° C during a glaciation. This has occurred about every 100,000 years, with smaller wiggles in between. That is, there has been a 100,000 year glaciation cycle for the past million years or so, and there may be shorter cycles as well.
The most recent glaciation, 20,000 years ago, is called the Laurentide, and Earth is still recovering from it. This map from the The Illinois State Museum exhibit on ice ages shows the extent of that ice.
The most recent small drop in average temperature caused the Little Ice Age of 1500-1700 AD, which history describes. Mountain glaciers advanced in Europe and rivers like the Thames in England froze solid, which doesn't happen now.
No, not feeeeeelings.
You got that right! Is is ALL about funding!
Thank GOD somebody gets it.
Bump for my state senator
Once in awhile we have an intelligent and rationale analysis of the current global warming trend. The Sun has been putting out more energy this particular solar cycle, as it has in the past. As a result the Earth, Mars, and Venus are experiencing global warming. The warming trend is 100% caused by the Sun and not by Mankind. The blaming of Mankind is akin to Pagan worship but sacrificing sound economies instead of fair maidens. Nice post!
Since the Sun is a main-sequence star, it seems logical, if not observable, that increasing solar influx would have a gradually increasing role in global warming.
Does current astrophysical thinking indicate that the Sun will gradually warm, or is it supposed that its transition will come only after an extended period of complete thermal stability?
No, he doesn't. Every current analysis of lower troposphere satellite data (MLS data set) now shows warming consistent with models of the predicted warming due to greenhouse gases in this century.
Anyone who makes the statement that "satellite data don't show warming in the lower atmosphere" has not updated his understanding of the global warming topic since 1999.
Not the current warming trend. The current warming trend over the past 150 years -- acclerating since the mid-1980s -- is too fast to be caused by astronomical cycles. Those factors operate on time-scales of 1-10,000 years.
"it is about feeeeeeeeeeeeelings"
And about fuuuuuuuuunnnnding.
Always follow the money.
On the contrary, it uses recycled and outdated arguments, and incorrect interpretations of scientific results, to validate inaccurate views and opinions of the global warming issue.
The only part of this that I feel he comes close to being reasonable is this:
We must also consider the costs of diverting vital resources from important issues like feeding the world's poor and providing ample water supply to emerging countries, which is the most important factor to impact world health [Yes!]. Contrary to the wishful thinking of those who believe we can alter climate change, such an emphasis could adversely affect critical world issues. The billions and by some estimates even trillions that it would cost society to cut carbon emissions would have a minute effect on projected global climate change while diverting our resources from more important issues at hand.
The way to address greenhouse gas emissions is not by just "cutting carbon emissions". The way to do it is to improve society (US and global) by changing the fundamental energy infrastructure of the global economy. And this is what President Bush called for in the State of the Union address. By doing what he called for, we can improve society, strengthen our economy against oil shocks, strengthen our national security and the global need to protect oil reserves from control by extremists, address the urgent societal needs identified above -- AND also reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
No, it hasn't. Read this:
That drives us to buy the cheap "cra*" coming out of China or the "no taste" vegies coming from Mexico and South America.
It's a "no gain" for the USA. The trade deficient, the overlapping social programs and the dependency on FOREIGN oil are the three problems which need fixing. Fixing those problems would change the flow of money and those necessary programs for the poor and hungry will benefit along with providing new jobs.
The Dems refuse to a meeting of the minds on any of them. Their voters are after all, the Unions, social program benefactors, the Eniro Nazis and "women"....the base that gave Bubba his win. IMHO
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