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Not cool anymore – followup (Irreversible climate change due to carbon dioxide emissions)

As a quick followup to my earlier posting on the 1,000 year irreversibility status of global warming.  The folks over at RealClimate also did a story on this subject but they tried to make the distinction that “irreversible” does mean “unstoppable”.  I think they are trying to play with words a bit but I will let you decide for yourselves.  As I read the abstract of the study (below), I do not think that they are following the same logic that the original authors followed.  That is okay though since science is all about discussing the different hypotheses and then testing them.

Not cool anymore

I really can’t comment on the news that it will take 1,000 years to recover from today’s carbon dioxide pollution better than Mr. Taranto of the Wall Street Journal.

I do want to make three additional comments before you read below.  If it takes 1,000 years to recover from an overload of carbon dioxide that has already poisoned our atmosphere then:

  1. why would we risk ruining our current economy for a solution that is likely to not ever happen?
  2. if it takes 1,000 years to get healthy doesn’t it stand to reason that it takes 1,000 years (or at least a couple of hundred) to get sick?
  3. is this just another example of inference based on mathematical computer models that have little to do with reality?

Al Gore’s statements for the Senate

These statements are part of the public record so I am comfortable that I do not harm any copyrights by reproducing them in entirety here.  Please note that these are the prepared statements of former Vice President Al Gore.

If you don’t want to read such serious stuff, I suggest you read “Canceled Due to Global Warming” and have a good chuckle.

Statement to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee As Prepared Hon. Al Gore Wednesday, January 28, 2009

We are here today to talk about how we as Americans and how the
United States of America as part of the global community should address
the dangerous and growing threat of the climate crisis.

Nuclear war would cause more global warming

I don’t understand why this study was commissioned. Isn’t the death and destruction of nuclear war bad enough to deter pushing the button? Does anyone really believe that a leader of a nuclear power or a terrorist would be about to start the holocaust and then pause because they were concerned about the environment?

I guess when you work at Stanford though, such thoughts cross your mind. Or maybe it is just the constant pressure within acedemia to “Publish or Perish” to keep your job. Or maybe it has some deeper and political purpose.

Al Gore’s Doomsday Clock

Wall Street Journal – July 22, 2008

Sometimes I think that this site exists solely to condemn Al Gore.  He is easily the person that we discuss more than all else when you consider his film, his rock concerts, and his foolish statements it seems that it is all that one can read on the subject of energy. And to think that this man was a heartbeat away from being the President of the United States for 8 years in addition to a few hanging chads from being elected to the office himself.

What is your ecological footprint

The Independent has a calculator that will ask you a series of questions, do some magical math, and tell you your impact on the globe.  The questionnaire is Europe based so for the US based readers answer the Europe questions as if the question was about the US (travel domestic and international).  Also for the monetary ranges, just assume that 1 US dollar is equal to 1 pound.  What’s your planetary impact?

For the record, I was 4 planets.

http://independent.footprint.wwf.org.uk/

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.

Gore Delivers Remarks on Energy and the Climate

Washington Post – July 17, 2008

Mr. Al Gore recently gave a speech in Washington DC regarding energy.  While many in the blogosphere will call Mr. Gore “Pope Gore” and refer to environmentalists as a religion, in this case, I don’t think that Mr. Gore makes many of the outlandish comments which I have chastised him about. Most of his comments are regarding energy independence, the status of the technology of alternative fuels, and the balance of power.

He does make a few global warming references which are a little hard to defend. He implies that the fires in California are caused by manmade global warming – this is probably not true since California has been enjoying an unusually wet climate for several decades and it appears that this current drought is simply going back to status quo.

Administration Releases EPA Report, Then Repudiates It

July 12, 2008 – Wall Street Journal

The Bush administration continues to struggle with what to do with global warming and carbon dioxide as a pollutant.  The Supreme Court ruled that carbon dioxide is a pollutant resulting from the burning of several fossil fuels. This has caused the EPA to try to figure out what to do with this new authority without destroying the economy.

As with most issues that revolve around Washington DC, this one is embroiled in politics with both major Presidential candidates chiming in.

The Bush administration published a government blueprint to reduce the U.S. output of global-warming gases, but at the same time rejected the document out of hand — saying it relied on “untested legal theories” and would impose “crippling costs” on the U.S. economy.

Global Warming Chief Among Threats to Coral Reefs

Environment News Service – July 7, 2008

image The degradation of coral life has been happening for quite some time.  I remember multiple articles on the effects of water pollution on coral life back in the 70s and 80s (before the Internet so I can’t point to those articles – sorry).

This article now includes global warming in that threat.  Since this is coming from the 11th International Coral Reef Symposium and the organization reportedly meets every 4 years then the problem is at least 44 years old!

Put oil firm chiefs on trial, says leading climate change scientist

The Guardian – June 23, 2008

Jim Hansen of NASA must have finally gone off the deep end.  While the man is probably brilliant, his call to put the CEOs of companies on trial for global warming is one of the most radical statements that I have heard in this global warming discussion. He states that he is 99% certain that carbon dioxide has already passed the safe level.

Mr. Hansen is certainly free to challenge the election of politicians and to speak on what he feels needs to be done.  However, when someone calls for radical measures such as putting CEOs on trial for high crimes against humanity, I immediately put him into the weirdo bucket and dismiss him as a heretic.