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LJWorld.com weblogs Global Warming from a Conceptual Standpoint

In My Backyard

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Anyone who has been paying attention to climate change has noticed that interest in the subject, at least in this country, has increased with with the advent of the current heat wave and drought. I have thought of a corollary to the more common 'Not in my backyard' rule - If it isn't happening in my backyard, it might as well not be happening at all. Now that something is happening in our backyards, people are paying more attention to it.

Honestly, from a global perspective, if the U.S. drought and heat waves of the past couple of years were occurring in isolation, they would mean very little. But, they are not occurring in isolation. Parts of Europe have experienced unusual heat waves in 2003 and 2006. There was a broad stretch of unusual heat in Asia, from Russia, through Pakistan, India, China and Japan in 2007. Australia had a couple of heat waves in 2009. I'm not sure how much hotter it can get in the Amazon, but the area had major droughts in 2005 and 2010. I think most of us have already heard of the 2010 Russian heat wave which hit their wheat harvest so hard they simply banned all exports in order to ensure they could feed themselves. China is currently having a drought in a major grain producing region. The land area impacted by these events and the frequency of the heat waves have been increasing globally over recent decades, and now it looks like it is our turn.

GeorgeOfWesternKansas recently commented that it has been raining a lot in England. This is true. It is also true that this is compatible with the predictions made decades ago that there would be more rain, but that it would be concentrated it less area, and there would be a general movement of the rain bands toward the poles. Climate change is complicated, but recognizing that there is a problem doesn't have to be.

I came across a talk that summarizes the problem in a simple way very well. I'd encourage you to spend 15 minutes on it if you have the time.

Comments

camper 1 year, 9 months ago

As a non-scientist, all I can do is form an opinion based on the information I see. And the information my brain has received tells me that there is enough data to be very concerned about climate change. The links presented do a good job of summarizing.

I sometimes wonder what people will think of us 300 years from now (if indeed climate change is proven by that point). I wonder what they will think of threads like this if it might be available to them.

If global warming is indeed happening and it causes irreversible damage in the future, deniers will possibly go down as the most foolish group of people to ever walk on this planet.

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RoeDapple 1 year, 9 months ago

Oh I'm not arguing with you Paul, I'm not even arguing the point the blog writer is trying to make. What sets me off is the number of self proclaimed geniuses on the Internet who couldn't change their own diaper without Google. I normally don't let this kind of rant bother me, don't know what got into me. Maybe it's the heat.

Really, who uses their initials and birth date for their anonymous sign in?

;-)

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RoeDapple 1 year, 9 months ago

Although this is not necessarily my view, I post it to show anyone can find what they want to believe on the Internet. Enjoy.

Is There Global Cooling? The answer may not be what you expect.

http://isthereglobalcooling.com/

I'll even throw in a video

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Paul Decelles 1 year, 9 months ago

tbaker,

Interesting. However I suggest you look at this material from weather underground for a somewhat different version of "the facts":

http://www.wunderground.com/climate/facts.asp

By the way check out the relationship between recent changes in solar irradiance and temperature.

I would be curious as to the source of your facts.

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tbaker 1 year, 9 months ago

Fact: The earth’s climate has constantly gone through periods of warming and cooling. The latest scientific data suggests that we may actually be entering a period of global cooling.

Fact: CO2 is likely not the major cause of the global warming trend over the last one hundred sixty years we have been able to take reasonably accurate measurements of so-called global average temperature. Even if carbon dioxide was the cause, there isn’t much we could do about it. Manmade CO2 accounts for a very tiny percentage of atmospheric CO2. (<.04%). There is a much stronger correlation between solar output and global temperatures.

Fact: A group of over 140 scientists and researchers recently gathered at the IPCC to sign a declaration stating that there is no convincing evidence to suggest that CO2 emissions from modern industrial activity cause climate change and called upon world leaders to abandon all efforts to reduce emissions. Over 31,000 scientists have signed a petition stating that there is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of greenhouse gases activity is causing global warming.

Fact: There is no scientific proof that proposed global warming “solutions” will have any impact upon the climate. History is rife with examples of Federal Government programs failing. To depend on a government solution to a so-called global warming crisis would be foolish in the extreme given such a long history of failure of far simpler programs with much less consequence.

Fact: Seventh grade physics shows that CO2's molecular weight makes it very heavy. It can't rise high enough to cause the greenhouse effect. Yes, there is a greenhouse effect, but it's mostly caused by water vapor (the stuff clouds are made out of) because H2O is much lighter than CO2.

Fact: College freshman statistics will show you that the error rate in temperature samples used to calculate the so-called global average temperature is greater than the claimed temperature rise.

Fact: Clearing of forests happens only where governments own the forest. Private ownership of forests results in cyclical growing and cutting. They don't waste the economic value of their own land! Take a look at the huge forests in Georgia and Florida, owned by Weyerhaeuser & other lumber companies.

Fact: Sunspot activity is in a cycle in which it reduces warming radiation from the sun. This is actually causing a cooling cycle right now.

Fact: Back in the 70’s, the same government-connected scientists and insiders were trying to scare us with the coming ice age. Remember that?

Fact: Volcanoes and the ocean are by FAR larger sources of CO2 and other "greenhouse" gases. Many, many, many multiples of the amounts we exhaust.

Fact: NASA and IPCC scientists were actually caught faking "warming" data, and concealing information that contradicts the popular dogma from the alarmists. If "Global Warming" is true, why fudge figures?

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Paul Decelles 1 year, 9 months ago

Good grief, Lighten up people. Notubermime raises a good issue about the effects of climate change on droughts. From what I have seen we don't yet have real good data on this point. But see the following:

http://www.juliendias.com.br/docartigo/Increased%20flood%20risk%20linked.pdf

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/27/world/study-hints-at-greater-threat-of-extreme-weather.html?_r=1

Seems like it is in everyone's interest to make sure research into long term climate trends is properly funded. This should not be a political issue.

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RoeDapple 1 year, 9 months ago

dappled roe? Regardless of what I may or may not believe, you appear so smug and sure of your belief that as soon as it "appears" that evidence (tic) of a different opinion is posted you immediately resort to a mild form of name calling. If I or anyone else had seriously presented an argument against global warming I'm sure you would have enjoyed belittling those that disagree. After all, that's why you blogged about global warming in the first place. Isn't it?

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notaubermime 1 year, 9 months ago

Your statement is just a lot of hand-waving. If you really wanted to claim that climate change is increasing the frequency of droughts on a global scale, you would need to correlate drought frequency and intensity with global temperatures. Until then, your argument boils down to pointing out single year weather events.

If you are going to go the route of single year weather events, then you have to take into account all of the counter-examples like the record snowfall from the Rockies to DC a couple years back, the upper Mississippi flooding, and many others. Heck, for each drought, I could probably match it with a flooding event.

The point being that there is plenty of good, solid evidence for global climate change out there. Throwing in statements which rely on a great deal of arm-waving and alarmism only undermines and distracts from what is well-known.

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Paul Decelles 1 year, 9 months ago

This is a pretty good summary of what we expect to happen and a good explanation of the time lags involved. Thanks for finding the video. There is also a good video on TED by James Hanson: http://www.ted.com/talks/james_hansen_why_i_must_speak_out_about_climate_change.html

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Glenn Reed 1 year, 9 months ago

Seems like there's a sense of "victory" in this post.

It's hot! People will start to pay attention to the idea that it's hot! I mean, it topped 100 degrees every day for the last week!

You're missing the power of faith to keep people deluded in the face of massive evidence.

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tange 1 year, 9 months ago

"'Not in my backyard' rule - If it isn't happening in my backyard, it might as well not be happening at all. Now that something is happening in our backyards, people are paying more attention to it."

Sand now too hot to keep one's head buried for long, and privacy fence too short to keep out the heat, folks won't be able to insulate themselves for too much longer.

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camper 1 year, 9 months ago

This is a good clip. I can only hope that our younger generations have the will to change our carbon based sytems to renewable options. There does not seem to be much will from our current generation(s).

The exponential and irreversible factors caused by things like permafrost melt and smaller icecaps are concerning.

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RoeDapple 1 year, 9 months ago

After thoroughly researching this phenomena for at least the last 32 seconds I have discovered the explanation.

http://www.theonion.com/articles/scientists-trace-heat-wave-to-massive-star-at-cent,21088/

PASADENA, CA—Groundbreaking new findings announced Monday suggest the record-setting heat wave plaguing much of the United States may be due to radiation emitted from an enormous star located in the center of the solar system.

Scientists believe the star, which they have named G2V65, may in fact be the same bright yellow orb seen arcing over the sky day after day, and given its extreme heat and proximity to Earth, it is likely not only to have caused the heat wave, but to be responsible for every warm day in human history.

When asked if anything could be done to prevent or counteract the star's heat production, Kivens expressed skepticism.

"No, for the foreseeable future, I think we're locked into orbit with this thing," he said. "Although the star seems to disappear every night, 24-hour reports from around the world seem to indicate the star never leaves Earth entirely."

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