Edge – August 14, 2007

I recently wrote about Dr. Dyson’s article on global warming. I found his analysis to be quite interesting even though he did meander into off topic conversations.

Alun Anderson wrote a rebuttal to the paper and it also merits consideration and contemplation. This is not a contest of votes, but rather a way for one to become educated in the various issues and arrive at a reasonable opinion.

It is unfortunate that Dr. Anderson does not directly repudiate many of Dr. Dyson’s discussions. Is this because they were true or because they were not worthy of his effort? It is not obvious in this article.



Edge – August 8, 2007

There are two recent articles on the climate change in the edge.  The great thing about these two articles is that they give opposing viewpoints of the issue which allows the curious reader to evaluate the arguments given and then make an informed decision. It is also not required that you agree with only one argument, but instead you can take pieces and parts from both sides to arrive at your own conclusion. This is in perfect keeping with my goal of being fair and balanced.

Today, I will reference the first article. I will follow up later with the second article. I can only take a few small snippets from each so I encourage you to click through and read more.


Starbucks Planet Green Game

I recently took the Starbucks Planet Green Game.  I advise it for anyone that wants to understand what they can do to save energy and use our resources more efficiently.  Regardless of your stance on the issue of global warming, we can probably all agree that we need to use resources more appropriately.

It was an enjoyable fifteen minutes so please take the time.

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Simple model for Global Warming

I am doing something a little different for this posting. I am referencing a site by one of the more frequent commenters on this site, Mike Alexander. Dr. Alexander holds a PhD in Chemical Engineering and has written a variety of books on things that interest him (see his financial analysis books here). Luckily for us, his interest also includes the changes to the global climate.

Dr. Alexander put out a rather straight-forward discussion on global warming that is primarily focused on the greenhouse effect. While the goal of this discussion was to keep it “simple” you will definitely need to strap on your thinking cap to follow all of the math. If you are math challenged, the wording around the equations is fairly easy to follow.


The Global Warming Test

Have you taken the Global Warning Test yet?

I am happy to report that I scored a 10 for 10 on the test. The test is a series of multiple answer questions. After you answer each question, a few paragraphs will explain the correct answer and give some facts that frequent readers of this site will have little trouble recognizing.

A few words about the Heartland Institute (the organization that has posted this test). They are a decidedly conservative organization. While this is not necessarily bad, it does taint the test to a very conservative approach to the entire discussion. I knew this going in so it was easy to figure out which answers Heartland thought were correct. Also, there are many questions the test does not ask that would not be as favorable to Heartland’s mission.


Sunday Comics again

We all need to laugh a little more and cry a little less.  Hopefully, this comic will help the former and not the latter.

Have a great Sunday.

You can see more comics by these cartoonists here. They put a new one out every couple of days and it is worth your time to browse and laugh.

Did you know that you can have these articles emailed to you? Click on the Subscribe to email link in the upper right corner, fill out the details, and you are set. No one will see your email address and you won’t get more spam by doing this.

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Weather Sensors Cause Climate Errors – May 11, 2007

I think this blog entry is worthy of your attention. The entry discusses the differences in measuring temperature using the ‘modern’ computer based methods and the traditional baseline methods of thermometers. The comments also are quite interesting and could be argued are more educational than the original post in the actual use of these two measuring devices and their individual bias.

I have real concerns about analyzing temperature. I do not find it to be mathematically valid to calculate ‘average’ temperatures. While the argument can be made that it is valid to average the temperature in a short period of time (probably less than an hour) in one single location, it is likely not valid to average it over longer periods (such as the entire day) and definitely not for multiple locations.


Recent glacier and climate variations in the Pacific Northwest

Quaternary Research Center, University of Washington

There does not appear to be a date on this article nor does it appear to be peer reviewed in a scientific journal. The author does appear to have some credibility though as it credits him as being with the University of Washington and URL implies that he is with the faculty of that august learning institution. His website also credits him with writing multiple articles since 1962.

The article tracks a specific glacier and its shrinking over the course of several hundred years. It is very apparent from the graph from that article that the shrinking has been relatively consistent since the mid 1800s and in fact may have slightly slowed down in recent decades (maybe we could put a hockey stick on this and show that the glacier is actually growing now).


Frustrated hybrid driver sues Honda claiming mileage ratings are inflated

Detroit News – July 15, 2007

As I have said before, the USA is a litigious society. We tend to sue way too often. However, some suits are absolutely needed to prevent abuse of the consumer. I don’t know if this particular case is warranted but it at least deserves some attention.

The technique for determining the average miles per gallon (MPG) appears to be adequate for pure internal combustion engines but it may not be adequate for hybrid vehicles (see the Consumer Products test below). Unfortunately, this metric is even more for critical for hybrids so that consumers can correctly analyze if they can at least come close to break even over a traditional IC engine design.


A Global Warming Primer

If you haven’t read the Global Warming Primer yet, you should.  It is an excellent, high-level discussion regarding global warming and many of its pertinent issues. You won’t be over-inundated with a lot of technical jargon.

There is also a blog associated with the Primer, and after you read my posts every day, you may want to read those posts.

It?s natural for non-scientists to become overwhelmed by the shouting and contradictions. It?s easy to bury your head in the sand with thoughts of, ?I like warm weather anyway?.

Controversy does exist; this is natural for such a complex science. Science evolves; it is, and should be, open to debate. The debate in climatology is leading to a consensus that tells a tale of a world already experiencing the first signals of global warming.