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Who’s up for a trip to Mars with the wife?
Posted: 06 March 2013 04:53 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 46 ]
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citizenschallenge.pm - 06 March 2013 11:32 AM
Coldheart Tucker - 05 March 2013 08:52 PM
citizenschallenge.pm - 05 March 2013 07:34 AM

While our economy mighty and resilient though it may be, has a few Achilles’ heels and is extremely dependent on relatively benign and predicable weather patterns.  Also the changes society is forcing on our atmosphere and biosphere have a mass and momentum that’s not going to stop for wishful thinking.  After we pass the 2 degree mark we will keep on marching up the thermometer scale, while our global heat distribution engine continues getting more energetic and chaotic with every season.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Also:
Explaining recent global warming’s impacts on weather

Three lectures that discuss important aspects and observed dynamics of our global heat distribution engine.  They come from last years “Breckenridge Weather and Climate Summit.”

Problem is, our models aren’t very good at telling us what’s going to happen and when.  We know something bad is coming, but the debate is at the rate and the level of extremity.  And unlike the majority of us, the 1% can afford to get out of the way, no matter how fast it comes on.  Could it push our society into war?  Yup.  Will it?  I dunno, and neither does anyone else.

“Problem is, our models aren’t very good at telling us what’s going to happen and when.”
That all depends on the expectations you place on them. 
That strategic reptilian-brained-billionaire funded denialist PR campaign has mutated the publics understanding - somehow tricking folks into believing that if an Earth studies model can’t reach the degree of accuracy that an engineer planning a bridge or plane can manage than we should ridicule and ignore it’s finding.  Utter dishonest BS!

I’ve used the analogy more than once that this type of nit-picking is like arguing over whether your vehicle is heading at that tree going 75mph or merely 65mph - rather than focusing on doing something to stop the dang thing. 
Folks think they can ignore the fact that the models have been “plenty” accurate, though not surprisingly imperfect. 
I was going to list some model information sources but, perhaps a fresh thread would be more appropriate for that.

Peer reviewed study casts doubt on “tipping point” model of climate change.

A group of international ecological scientists led by the University of Adelaide have rejected a doomsday-like scenario of sudden, irreversible change to Earth’s ecology.

In a paper published Feb. 28 in the journal Trends in Ecology and Evolution, the scientists from Australia, the United States and the United Kingdom argue that global-scale ecological tipping points are unlikely and that ecological change over large areas seem to follow a more gradual, smooth pattern.

This opposes recent efforts to define ‘planetary tipping points’ ‒ critical levels of biodiversity loss or land-use change that would have global effect ‒ with important implications for science and policy-makers.

Presumably, future studies will tell us if this is accurate or not.  It will be interesting to see if these new modeling methods will confirm which theories.

The research, published in the journal Physical Review Letters, shows that a technique called direct statistical simulation does a good job of modeling fluid jets, fast-moving flows that form naturally in oceans and in the atmosphere. Brad Marston, professor of physics at Brown University and one of the authors of the paper, says the findings are a key step toward bringing powerful statistical models rooted in basic physics to bear on climate science.

In any case, I’ll continue to do my part by running ClimatePrediction.net’s BOINC project on all my PCs.

“We know something bad is coming, but the debate is at the rate and the level of extremity.”
Yea, we know, given all the decades of inaction - That at this point the changes to be expected go from very disruptive - to utterly catastrophic. 
And The Reptiles say leave our party alone!  Let’s wait to see how bad it’s really going to get. 

And their efforts are being opposed in a variety of ways.  Additionally, the US is on a downward trend in terms of vehicle produced CO2 emissions, if nothing else.  We can, and should be doing more, of course, but James Lovelock has shifted from his position that things are utterly hopeless, to one where we still have time to reverse the trend before things reach extinction levels for us.

As for “the 1% can afford to get out of the way”... I got my doubts, I suspect they are way more dependence on the other 99% than their reptilian-pea-brains will allow them to recognize.  To say nothing of everyone’s dependent on farming, industry, the power grid and international transportation links. 
And Yes Virginia, given our collective wasted decades we will be witnessing massive disruptions in all those systems along with everything in-between - WITH NO MAYBE ABOUT IT -  Deniers can bitch about “rather accurate models” not being accurate enough all they want, still bottom-line simply because the climatologist’s picture isn’t in absolute focus does not mean the slightly out of focus image they have painted is any less real.

Oh, in a Mad Max scenario, everybody loses, very quickly.  I don’t think it is likely we’ll see anything like that in the next 30 years, however.  That is all the window they need if they’re serious about getting humans on Mars in extinction avoiding numbers.

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Posted: 07 March 2013 10:27 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 47 ]
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Coldheart Tucker - 06 March 2013 04:53 PM

Peer reviewed study casts doubt on “tipping point” model of climate change.

A group of international ecological scientists led by the University of Adelaide have rejected a doomsday-like scenario of sudden, irreversible change to Earth’s ecology.

In a paper published Feb. 28 in the journal Trends in Ecology and Evolution, the scientists from Australia, the United States and the United Kingdom argue that global-scale ecological tipping points are unlikely and that ecological change over large areas seem to follow a more gradual, smooth pattern.

This opposes recent efforts to define ‘planetary tipping points’ ‒ critical levels of biodiversity loss or land-use change that would have global effect ‒ with important implications for science and policy-makers.

Barry Brook one of the authors has an interesting blog with more details

bravenewclimate.com     /2013/03/04/ecological-tipping-points/
NOTE: For some counter arguments, see this HuffPo piece: Tipping Points: Can Humanity Break The Planet? What strikes me is that many of the critics apparently did not read the original article, because they’ve confused/conflated what we’ve said about ecological tipping points with those observed or forecast for the climate system. Because of the inherent global interconnectivity and physical couplings of the latter, tipping points are plausible and indeed likely for some elements, such as Arctic sea ice. Not so for biomes, we argue.  If you want a PDF copy of the TREE paper, email me. (for the links visit his site)

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Interestingly that website has an ad endorsing nuclear power as: “The painless remedy for our energy and environmental crises.”  “Painless”. . . “Remedy”. . .  hmmmm
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

bravenewclimate.proboards.com   /index.cgi?action=display&board=bncblogposts&thread=380#ixzz2MsDLmTJG

“We were addressing ecological tipping points in the terrestrial realm. We suggested that marine systems are more connected and ocean acidification was a plausible global TP. There are a number of tipping elements for the climate system that are geophysical in origin that are also plausible. Not for biomes, however.”

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Coldheart Tucker - 06 March 2013 04:53 PM

Presumably, future studies will tell us if this is accurate or not.  It will be interesting to see if these new modeling methods will confirm which theories.


First let’s be clear the one study has nothing to do with the other. 

Also the way you present this:“tell us if this is accurate or not”, sounds like there are many different outcomes this new method will help us choose between. 
When in fact, all it promises is to help further refine numbers - that is continue to focus in on the image - But, this new modeling method isn’t going to change the physical basics and we are not going to escape those physical outcomes.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

As for Mad Max and Lovelock…
Don’t know about the Mad Max scenario, or why you would invoke a non-expert who has never reflected the considered opinion of the scientific community anyways.
Recently Lovelock has made headlines when he admitted his vision was wrong and things aren’t as bad as HE thought they would be.  Of course the denialist echo chamber is treating it as some indictment of the scientific understanding… another example of their shameless crazy-making pure and simple.
Lovelock didn’t then, or now, reflect the climatological scientists collective understanding, then or now!  So what’s the point?

 

please note, if you want to visit the “bravenewclimate” pages you need to cut and past the URL’s together, had to do this to sneak past the guards.  cool smirk

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Posted: 09 March 2013 03:15 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 48 ]
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citizenschallenge.pm - 07 March 2013 10:27 AM
Coldheart Tucker - 06 March 2013 04:53 PM

Presumably, future studies will tell us if this is accurate or not.  It will be interesting to see if these new modeling methods will confirm which theories.


First let’s be clear the one study has nothing to do with the other. 

Also the way you present this:“tell us if this is accurate or not”, sounds like there are many different outcomes this new method will help us choose between. 
When in fact, all it promises is to help further refine numbers - that is continue to focus in on the image - But, this new modeling method isn’t going to change the physical basics and we are not going to escape those physical outcomes.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

It will help us understand our environment better and make better decisions to correcting the problem. Some of the geoengineering proposals I’ve seen aren’t exactly well thought out, it seems to me.  dumping ocean acidifying compounds into the atmosphere to reduce incoming sunlight, for example.  Doesn’t do us much good to have a cool planet if we kill off the fresh water fish due to acid rain.

As for Mad Max and Lovelock…
Don’t know about the Mad Max scenario, or why you would invoke a non-expert who has never reflected the considered opinion of the scientific community anyways.
Recently Lovelock has made headlines when he admitted his vision was wrong and things aren’t as bad as HE thought they would be.  Of course the denialist echo chamber is treating it as some indictment of the scientific understanding… another example of their shameless crazy-making pure and simple.
Lovelock didn’t then, or now, reflect the climatological scientists collective understanding, then or now!  So what’s the point?

please note, if you want to visit the “bravenewclimate” pages you need to cut and past the URL’s together, had to do this to sneak past the guards.  cool smirk

I’ve never heard Lovelock called a “non-expert” before, by anyone, other than those who think that global warming is a hoax.  As for his disagreements with others in the field of climatology, it seems to me that in the beginning, Lovelock was one of the few who, decades ago, was saying that global warming was going to be really bad, while others we saying that it was something to be concerned about, but the danger levels weren’t known.  Later, others moved to his position of it being really bad, while he shifted to, “stick a fork in us, we’re done.”  Lovelock has now shifted away from that, while others are holding to their former positions, with some outliers on either end.  At least one expert has predicted that the Arctic ice cap will be gone completely by this summer.  We shall certainly find out if that’s accurate or not.

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Posted: 10 March 2013 09:25 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 49 ]
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Coldheart Tucker - 09 March 2013 03:15 PM

I’ve never heard Lovelock called a “non-expert” before, by anyone, other than those who think that global warming is a hoax.

  Where is there any indication that Lovelock has any serious education in any field of climatology?
or that he’s ever produced serious scientific work regarding any aspect of our global heat distribution engine?

http://www.jameslovelock.org/page2.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_Lovelock

Coldheart Tucker - 09 March 2013 03:15 PM

As for his disagreements with others in the field of climatology, it seems to me that in the beginning, Lovelock was one of the few who, decades ago, was saying that global warming was going to be really bad, while others we saying that it was something to be concerned about, but the danger levels weren’t known. 

Well I was saying that too.  Didn’t take no genius -
simply needed a mind that took our planet seriously as a physical entity!  Rather than getting lost in all the right wing siren song of “greed is good” and let’s add nitro to our global economic engine.

And along the decades I’ve learned that it is much more complicated than we assumed back then.  But that was only thanks to the disciplined work of thousands of scientists and the studies they published.  I’ve had to self correct my assumptions many times and am sure there’s more to come.

Yet the basic outline has been quite accurate - and if we excuse the timing factor - and add in society’s virtually complete refusal to do anything substantive to change direction for all these decades… we will bring about the worst possible outcomes.  Sure as you can predict the rising of the sun… only genuine uncertainty is the timing… not the outcome.

Like they say: We can kid ourselves, but we can’t kid Mother Nature!”
=================

Don’t get me wrong I have great admiration for Lovelock’s Gaia Theory and there is much to be said for it
and much that can be misunderstood about it.

I’ve developed my own independent perspective/appreciation on Gaia, but don’t have the brainpower or discipline to get it down on paper…
but I feeel it man.
  cheese

[ Edited: 10 March 2013 09:28 AM by citizenschallenge.pm ]
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Posted: 10 March 2013 09:48 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 50 ]
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citizenschallenge.pm - 10 March 2013 09:25 AM
Coldheart Tucker - 09 March 2013 03:15 PM

I’ve never heard Lovelock called a “non-expert” before, by anyone, other than those who think that global warming is a hoax.

  Where is there any indication that Lovelock has any serious education in any field of climatology?
or that he’s ever produced serious scientific work regarding any aspect of our global heat distribution engine?

http://www.jameslovelock.org/page2.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_Lovelock

Given that his career has included

In early 1961, Lovelock was engaged by NASA to develop sensitive instruments for the analysis of extraterrestrial atmospheres and planetary surfaces. The Viking program, that visited Mars in the late 1970s, was motivated in part to determine whether Mars supported life, and many of the sensors and experiments that were ultimately deployed aimed to resolve this issue. During work on a precursor of this program, Lovelock became interested in the composition of the Martian atmosphere, reasoning that many life forms on Mars would be obliged to make use of it (and, thus, alter it). However, the atmosphere was found to be in a stable condition close to its chemical equilibrium, with very little oxygen, methane, or hydrogen, but with an overwhelming abundance of carbon dioxide. To Lovelock, the stark contrast between the Martian atmosphere and chemically dynamic mixture of that of our Earth’s biosphere was strongly indicative of the absence of life on the planet.[7] However, when they were finally launched to Mars, the Viking probes still searched (unsuccessfully) for extant life there.

Lovelock invented the electron capture detector, which ultimately assisted in discoveries about the persistence of CFCs and their role in stratospheric ozone depletion.[8][9][10] After studying the operation of the Earth’s sulfur cycle,[11] Lovelock and his colleagues developed the CLAW hypothesis as a possible example of biological control of the Earth’s climate.

It seems obvious to me that he’s had some training on the subject.  NASA’s not going to let just anybody work for them.  Note that his degree is in medicine, and yet this is far afield from that.  Clearly, he must have demonstrated something to NASA in order to be able to do the job.  While college degrees can be an indicator of skill, they are not conclusive proof.  I’ve not heard any climatologists denouncing Lovelock as being inept.  I’ve heard them disagree with some of his conclusions, but no overall denunciations of him.  Of course, they could be muting their comments out of respect for some of the other things that he’s done (his research on CFCs and the ozone layer), or it could just be that they don’t get the kind of press that he does.

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Posted: 10 March 2013 11:19 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 51 ]
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Coldheart Tucker - 10 March 2013 09:48 AM

NASA’s not going to let just anybody work for them.  Note that his degree is in medicine, and yet this is far afield from that.  Clearly, he must have demonstrated something to NASA in order to be able to do the job. . .  I’ve not heard any climatologists denouncing Lovelock as being inept.  I’ve heard them disagree with some of his conclusions, but no overall denunciations of him. 

Well I certainly don’t mean to “denunciate” Lovelock, nor am I claiming he isn’t extremely intelligent.

But I think people have given him way more “gravitas” than he has earned.

Further they have misconstrued his recent comments as relating to the climatological community’s understanding, when they actually only relate to his own understanding.  Which always has been outside of the general understanding, or “consensus” if you will.

In looking around I came across this article that I thought summed up my attitude pretty well.  The whole article is worth reading.  I’ll included the last three paragraphs:

Visionary or Vision-Impaired? Lovelock Is Both
By Melanie Lenart | May 1, 2012
http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/guest-blog/2012/05/01/visionary-or-vision-impaired-lovelock-is-both/

{...}
Still, it’s one thing to invent a device to measure CFCs and other chemical compounds, or a theory proposing that the web of life on the planet affects the environment. These efforts are supported by facts. They’re akin to finding a pile of bones and fitting them together in a way that forms a plausible dinosaur skeleton.

It’s quite another thing to invent facts for imaginary sketches of how the Earth’s vegetation looked in the past, or to create single-handedly a climate change scenario in which humans dwindle off by century’s end. That amounts to building a dinosaur skeleton from wood and plaster, calling it a fossil, and then pointing to it as something alarming.

Lovelock deserves our respect for his visionary ideas, but not all of his thoughts are diamonds in the rough. Some are just rough sketches with no real basis in truth. It’s OK to toss around ideas like this with friends at a bar, but someone as influential as Lovelock should do his homework before sharing his thoughts with the world.

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Posted: 10 March 2013 01:02 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 52 ]
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I am reminded of what someone once said about Malcolm X:  He scared white people, and thus made Martin Luther King look better to whites who were terrified of the idea of racial equality.  No way to prove, of course, that if there had been no Malcolm X, MLK wouldn’t have been able to make as much progress as he did, but it is a possibility worth considering.

If Lovelock hadn’t raised some of his concerns, we might not have listened to the more “moderate” scientists on the subject of AGW.

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Posted: 14 March 2013 05:26 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 53 ]
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Coldheart Tucker - 10 March 2013 01:02 PM

I am reminded of what someone once said about Malcolm X:  He scared white people, and thus made Martin Luther King look better to whites who were terrified of the idea of racial equality.  No way to prove, of course, that if there had been no Malcolm X, MLK wouldn’t have been able to make as much progress as he did, but it is a possibility worth considering.

If Lovelock hadn’t raised some of his concerns, we might not have listened to the more “moderate” scientists on the subject of AGW.

Fair enough… and I don’t mean to sound like I’m ragging on him, or worse denouncing him. 
After all, I dare say I’ve absorbed the concept of Gaia better than most folks.
I’m just trying to keep it in perspective.

He is not, has never been a climate expert - and the importance of his opinions in that regard shouldn’t be overblown as they have been.

[ Edited: 14 March 2013 05:29 AM by citizenschallenge.pm ]
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