Global Warming May Be Irreversible

A new paper published by a leading researcher says many effects of climate change are already irreversible. Susan Solomon, a leader of the International Panel on Climate Change and a scientist with National Oceanic and Atmopheric Association (NOAA) said even if carbon emissions were stopped, temperatures around the globe will remain high until at least the year 3000. And if we continue with our current carbon dioxide emissions for just a few more decades, we could see permanent “dust bowl” conditions.

Solomon defined “irreversible” as change that would remain for 1,000 years even if humans stopped adding carbon to the atmosphere immediately. As carbon dioxide emissions rise, the planet will be undergo more and more long term environmental disruptions which will persist even if and when emission are brought under control.

The report says temperatures around the globe have risen and changes in rainfall patterns have been observed in areas around the Mediterranean, southern Africa and southwestern North America. Warmer climate also is causing expansion of the ocean, and that is expected to increase with the melting of ice on Greenland and Antarctica.

A recent NASA article said observations have confirmed rising temperatures in Antarctica over the past 50 years in not only the Antarctic Peninsula, but in western Antarctica as well.

In a teleconference, Soloman said this is not just another pollution problem. “We’re used to pollution problems being something we can fix, smog, — we can cut back and things will get better later. Or haze, we think it will go away pretty quickly.”
This is true for gases like methane and nitrous oxide, but not for CO2. “People have imagined that if we stopped emitting carbon dioxide that the climate would go back to normal in 100 years or 200 years,” said Solomon. “What we’re showing here is that’s not right. It’s essentially an irreversible change that will last for more than a thousand years.”

This is because the oceans are currently soaking up a lot of the planet’s excess heat, as well as some of the carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. The carbon dioxide and heat will eventually start coming out of the ocean. And that will take place for many hundreds of years.

The scientists say that once the global thermostat once it has been turned up, its extremely difficult to turn it back down.

Solomon said sea level rise is a much slower thing to happen, that it will take a long time, but we will lock into it based on the peak level of C02 we reach this century.

So, should we just give up? Are we doomed? “It seems like this is even more reason to do something about it,” Solomon said. “When you are committing to something you can’t back out of, you need to proceed even more carefully than when it’s something you can reverse….I don’t think that the very long time scale of the persistence of these effects has been understood.”

The paper is published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Sources: PhysOrg, NPR

88 Replies to “Global Warming May Be Irreversible”

  1. Oh,no! Are we doomed?!

    Shall I stop breathing? lol

    It’s a big problem, anyway… isn’t it?

  2. should we start investing into creating small stations spread them across the globe to purify the air, instead of waiting for mother nature to correct itself we can give it a boost and at the same time reduce the carbon emissions.


  3. Well if you do the reverse and take CO2 from the atmosphere I don’t see why it can’t be reversed. (also a little bit of warming could be a good idea :))

  4. Oh, for one more thing!

    I subscribed Universe Today e-mail but it just didn’t come! I added to exception list for my spam filters but nothing happened. I leave my mail address so please send me the mail.
    sorry for non-related reply ; . ;

  5. It can be reversed, but unfortunately it will take a long time, and as it was mentioned ,ocean takes heat in, as I assume there will be limit to that…. and we will definitely see some very dramatic warnings. I think we need to get the whole world involved….. I would suggest to start with having a talk about global warning with one person a day…. start today…. pick one person…. anyone…. if they don’t understand it then explain what it is… if they do understand then brainstorm together on what we can do to save our Home Planet!

  6. I’m not sure who’s being sensationalist here. But it sounds like the author of the paper took a liberty.

    People discussing serious and controversial topics need to be careful with words. Redefining words is NOT helpful as it makes for an easy target for critics. It gives them powerful sound bites that they will use.

    irreversible = not reversible (ever)

    irreversible != reversible in X time (even if that is a long time). Or with artificial assistance.

    irreversible in my lifetime or in X generations or Y years is clearer

    Hopefully we can find better techonologies to go forward with AND we can find effective carbon sequestering technologies to help reverse the problem.

  7. Without one solid piece of unbiased scientific fact to support the manmade global warming, far too many are taking this seriously. Before we turn the economies of the world upside down and cause untold damages to everyone, perhaps we should wait for a fact to surface proving manmade global warming. For that matter, that there is any unnatural temperature variations going on. This is a living dynamic planet, what exactly is the “right” temperature that it should never vary from?

  8. According to James Lovelock biodiversity increases as temperature decreases so that there was actually more habitable regions and diverse life forms during the last glaciation than there is today. So simply put a cooler Earth is better for life.

    I fear we’re getting too close to the extinction line where life is just not possible on Earth. If this prediction plays out the interior of the continents will become deserts and life will be clinging to the sinking seashores. I would much rather see the world economy plunge than have the only life we know of in the Universe to cease to exist.

  9. Dear kcuhC, thanks for putting two of the favorite denialist talking points together:

    “Before we turn the economies of the world upside down and cause untold damages to everyone, perhaps we should wait for a fact to surface proving manmade global warming.”

    “This is a living dynamic planet, what exactly is the “right” temperature that it should never vary from?”

    If you’re so concerned about “the economies of the world” and “untold damages to everyone”, then the answer is THE CURRENT TEMPERATURE. 5C lower and we’re in an ice age – most of the world’s agriculture and economies shut down. 5C higher and much of the world’s economy is under water and/or overrun by refugees.

  10. “Without one solid piece of unbiased scientific fact . . . . . .” The scientific evidence is overwhelming. Even the oil companies have admitted the problem is real. By this time next year, even Fox News may wake up. Maybe it would be more obvious if you thought in terms of atmospheric energy than air temperature. Storms are more energetic and able to override seasonal norms. Deserts are moving, monsoons are changing. People in Kansas are delaing with pests that would normally not be north of Oklahoma. It’s as real as day and night, and the data is there if you look.

  11. There is a new number #1 financial hoax in the world’s history. Coffee Annan can now relax, Oil for Food is now #2, Al Gore’s Carbon Trading biz will easily overtake him! Way to hang in there Coffee!

  12. Just a few thoughts.

    1. Long before the Earth becomes uninhabitable due to global warming there will be refugees and conflits which will put all kinds of other stresses on the world. There will likely be wars and other adverse affects. This will not help the situation. It will also not help they economies of the world. It also will not be just elsewhere. Eventually the impact will reach us all.

    2. If you assumed it was something else causing this, we would still need to understand what is causing it, which direction it’s going in, how long it’s going in that direction, etc. Say we aren’t at fault and it is real, increasing, and not coming down. It would be prudent to see if we can do something about it even if it isn’t our fault.

    3. The problem is everywhere and the solutions won’t be just one thing. Would you like to save 90% of your electric lighting bill? Incandescent lights waste about that much in heat. What if we looked for this general kind of improvement everywhere? Imagine that.

    There will be multiple solutions and multiple generations of those solutions. Our current technologies solved some very real problems. The ones they didn’t solve were not understood, hidden, and tricky. Now we need to solve those problems. A lot of the emerging solutions are interim. Think of the opportunities for businesses that can bring real solutions! And if we have to pay some of the gain back to fix the problem that’s fine too. And if we don’t start soon it will only get more expensive and disruptive.

    One last thing, be careful of people selling greenwash “solutions”. Look for real benefits.

  13. I thought this was an astronomy website, not a political site.

    Is the global temperature rising yes, I think everyone agrees with the supported DATA. Is it manmade? Yet to be determined.

    I do know one thing for sure. Al Gore loves money.

  14. Global warming is a scientific fact with overwhelming evidence. Man’s influence in global warming is a scientific fact with overwhelming evidence. Global warming denial is a political delusion akin to creationism. And, since the Earth is a planet, both these scientific facts are entirely within the scope of this site. If you don’t want to bring politics to Universe Today, stop trying to deny scientific facts with your selective and very political blindness. And very criminal blindness, if I may be so blunt.

    As for the rest…

    This is one more study that is telling us that global warming consequences may be more serious than expected. Cutting down the emissions will probably not be enough; we may have to actively start pumping CO2 out of the atmosphere. Don’t like the “irreversibility” thing, though. If we do what we must do, it’s not at all irreversible, although it’s true that pumping CO2 out of the atmosphere will not have an immediate effect because of the buffering effect of the ocean: all the CO2 that it has been absorbing will be released very slowly until the planet’s hydro- and atmosphere return to pre-industrial levels.

    But it’s doable. Hard, yes, expensive, yes, requiring a very strong paradigm shift in the sense that we must all learn to live sustainably, hell yes. But doable.

  15. Scare tactics. Governments and other big organizations use it all the time. THAT MY FRIEND IS CRIMINAL.

  16. Zibit, if that’s so why would the previous US administration and other governments try to surpress and ignore these studies?

    Seems to me if you launch a scare tactic you want to follow through.

  17. – “Am I doomed ?” asked the polar bear.
    – “I exist ! I exist ! I exist !” answered the trolls…


    For those interested in the politics behind the “so-called” controversy, I recommend the very good 2007 documentary called “Everything is cool”.

    @Armen: thanks for your post, count me in !

  18. I find it funny with all the scare of global warming. Wasnt the world supposed to burn like in the 80’s ??? guess were still chugging along and looks like mother earth is been warming up and cooling for millions and millions of years.

  19. Global warming or not, oceanic levels of CO2 are rising, and the result is that the pH of the waters of the oceans is decreasing. It’s still above 7.0, but in many places the water is too acidic (not alkaline enough) for foraminifera and the other tiny things that make up the base of the marine food chains to fix their calcium shells. As a result, many of them die off before they really get going — and the things that eat them, and the things that eate *those*, and so on up to sharks and whales, are going without food. Fisheries are dying — check it out. Fish farming, even in freshwater, won’t make up the difference, because excess CO2 is absorbed by all open water until it becomes too saturated with that gas to absorb any more. If you like fish, perhaps you might want to think about artificial carbon sequestration and ways of generating power that don’t emit so much CO2 — or any at all.

  20. This kind of Hyperbole simply discredits the report. We have a 10,000 year macro view and 200 years of micro view of climate. Even if all of the assumptions are correct about human cause of global warming over the last thirty years is accurate, we simply have no clue of the feedback responses and other macro events that counteract these events. ie extreme volconism, extended lack of sunspots, increased cloud cover. OBAMAwon, now can we get back to science and stop with the breathliss reporting. Sheesh!!!!!

  21. Not all of the CO2 will “come out” of the ocean. It is fixed by marine animals in their skeletons and at suitable depth precipitates as a solid onto the sea floor.

  22. For all the shrill alarmists out there shrieking about the indisputable ‘facts’ that a.) the world is warming and b.) humans are the cause of it, I have yet to see anyone prove a single one. The only ‘fact’ I see is that every single piece of evidence brought by those who believe in global warming can and has been disputed by those who are less certain that it is occuring or don’t think that humans are the cause of it.
    Now, I don’t happen to think that global warming is occuring or that humans are responsible for warming trends at all (so my brain must be addled), but last time I checked if a piece of evidence is disputed and there isn’t absolute proof for it (which by its very definition mean indisputable) then it is not a fact. Shocker here I know, but that means you could be wrong.
    Sorry folks, this is a debate that is supposed to be based in science, and in a scientific debate you can’t win without actual evidence to back up your claims.

    (oh yeah, why was it that the catch phrase changed from global warming to climate change…)

  23. i was under the impression that plants “eat” co2. in fact i was under the impression, with the little i know, that the body of plants is mostly made up of co2 or at least co2 has a major contribution to volume (i dont know how to call it) of the plant.
    so i ask myself, if there is indeed an increase in the “food” of plants, why isn’t vegetation doing a bit better? you would expect to see some anomalies. i would.
    and i wouldn’t call it global warming. global climate change… maybe. but not warming. this has got to be one of the coldest winters we seen in a while.
    i do agree with the fact that we do have some anomalies in weather patterns. in 30 years, i’ve seen some. but it’s mostly limited to city because of polution, and if it’s not, it can only be called a delay (perhaps) in normal climate change. for instance, i live in romania. and since i was a little boy i was used to see snow as early as november and be done with it by feb. now, i see it starting in late december, and finishing sometimes as late as april. yeah, i seen snow in april. in fact quite a lot. but this is not necessarily “warming” or man-made.
    however, i see the global warming folks capitalizing the idea. i see talks about loans to help countries to adapt to the new theory. that ain’t good folks. nothing that starts with a loan is good. and second, i seen talks about enforcing by military the changes that need to be made to “save the planet”.
    in other words, believe in it. if you can’t we’ll give you some money (that you and your people will pay for years to come), to adapt to new technologies (that are already patented) and if you’re not ready to do that, we’ll bomb you. now, how can one be sensitive to planet’s problems in this scenario? and where are those “facts” that global warming is happening and that it’s man made.
    pls dont talk about weather and rain patterns. i literally have no patience for bad science. comparing temperatures from the same area, same time, but different years is not science. science for me would be some tangible “see it with your own eyes NOW” kinda proof. given that co2 AGAIN has a major role in plant life development i guess a real proof would be to see that plants would develop abnormally large. or in places where they should be able to develop. and rain in the desert. this would be tangible and undeniable. weather models imho are not proof. only studies and statistics that ultimately dont say anything. we all know how well they can predict the weather, so why bother to believe they can predict the climate.

  24. I live just a few blocks from the Atlantic Ocean in Sunny Florida. I keep remembering the Global Warming predictions each day as I look out over the ocean searching for any signs of the water rising over the sand dunes.

    My bags have been packed by the door along with my life preserver just in case as I put on my heavy coat for the 3rd week in a row to leave for work in the chilly air of sunny Florida. Damn this global warming!

    I am so glad that the scientific professionals and experts such as Al Gore and the media of “journalists” with their qualified degrees in journalism have warned me so I can be prepared. Now please excuse me while I light my fireplace and get some more hot chocolate.

  25. Brad Said:
    “Not all of the CO2 will “come out” of the ocean. It is fixed by marine animals in their skeletons and at suitable depth precipitates as a solid onto the sea floor.”

    Methane hydrates are stored on the sea floor, and are stable at certain temperatures. If the sea warms too much, these deposits will be released, and then we really are in trouble…

    These deposits have been possibly linked with the Permian–Triassic extinction event, which killed 95% of all species on the planet. This is what worries me about global warming…

  26. I’ll write here what I write everywhere when people whinge about the GW ‘scam’.

    I think the important point is being missed and it isn’t whether GW is true or not. What EVERY person, company and government should be taking from this debate is that ecologically, we are living beyond our means. As big as the Earth is, in every capacity you can imagine it is still finite.

    Western society is a ravenous beast on all the resources and there are billions of fellow and future inhabitants who want to follow in our footsteps. Can the Earth support that? Who wants to find out if there’s the risk of losing our home?!?! We NEED to become more ingenious, more efficient and more appreciative in the use of our planet.

    In case we forget there is a planet either side to remind how precious Earth is.

  27. Money rules Global Warming. Mankind will most likely ‘pass the point of no return’ when the powers finally realize something concerted must be done. Unfortunately, man is the equivalent of a ravaging cancer-like disease plaguing plant earth. Cure will come too late for survival.

  28. Yes global warming is happening but man’s influence is minimal at best. I believe that the current ‘scare’ was actually started by a couple of researchers at a university in the east of Britain in the late 1970’s as their tiny meteorological section of the geography department was facing closure due to lack of funding. [I won’t name the uni. for fear the details aren’t EXACTLY correct]. I think they did some climate modeling putting in extreme values and lo and behold.. disaster. Isn’t the trend over the past 1500 years for temperatures downward anyway? Al Gore: an inconvenient pillock

  29. Our Earth is a big world and will do what it can to keep itself in flux. If this so called ‘global warming’ is caused by humans (it was much warmer 1000 years ago-humans did not cause that-read the Vikings tours) , the Arctic icecaps and Greenland icecaps will melt causing the north-western Atlantic Ocean to be flush with fresh cool water and displace the heavier salt water which is the engine for the Atlantic Ocean coveyor belt. At this time the conveyor belt is responsible for Western Europe to be much warmer than normal for the latitude. If this conveyor belt stops, instead of warm Gulf Stream waters moving NW toward the Arctic, the Gulf Stream will turn east near Bermuda toward Gibraltor -if this continues long enough, NW Europe will be one cold region and the icecaps will increase which can start an ice age . These so-call pro ‘global warming ‘experts” had better check about past climate conditions since year 0 CE .
    Also remember the ‘little’ Ice Age caused by the Sun cooling itself from around 1600-1800,
    the Sun rules our climates, if it decides to ‘chill out’ for a few centuries, there really is not much humans can do about it.

  30. I admit humans are the worst and messiest polluters in Earths’ history and causes ‘heat islands’ in the large metro areas of the world.
    Astronomers and other scientist have many tools to study our Sun, but, unforturnately,
    there is no way to figure out what the Sun will do in the next 100 years-it is known by studying other stars it will be 10-20% hotter in a billion years, making whatever life remaing on Earth very difficult-but we know the Sun does what it has to do to keep itself in flux in the meantime. Lets not get too jumpy about ‘global warming’ because it can cause the opposite effect.

  31. It is recommended to read the according passage from Michael Crichton’s “State of Fear”. Some, not all, evidence for global warming seams to be in doubt. And somebody who is realy dedicated to the idea of global warming should separate the wheat from the chaff in his arguments. It simply would make the environmental concern more plausible.

    With the almightiness of the egoistic pursuit of happiness on the one hand and the organized fanaticism of do-gooders on the other, ideology might easily become the status of certainty.

    It would be much better if the fighters on both sides would try to challenge their own results with the scientific method. But trust me when I tell you that they will never be capable of doing so.

  32. I can’t believe how thick some people replying to this article are. It’s unbelievable. Next you’ll probably tell me the world is flat, 6000 years old, that the moon landing is a hoax and that evolution is bogus. Right?

    To keep in line with such ridiculous remarks you make why not question trigonometry or claim mathematics are just nonsense because it’s all so theoretical. Or perhaps claim All that makes as much sense as you undereducated gooks claiming there is no global warming because you’re a bit chilly, or because plants don’t grow very fast where you live.

    Now take this lesson, vacuum-brained nitwits – if you want to challenge a scientific theory do so with evidence, calculations and objective analysis. Not some half-brained knee-jerk about the wind being chilly.

    Okay? So go back, and try again. Want to contest Global climate change then get serious and objective about it. If you’re too thick to do that, well… Enjoy your beer and nascar.

  33. Vegar I’ll be serious and objective about climate change.

    You see enthusiasm for the global-warming scare also ensures that heatwaves make headlines, while contrary symptoms, such as the winter of 06-07 billion-dollar loss of Californian crops to unusual frost, are relegated to the business pages. The early arrival of migrant birds in spring provides colourful evidence for a recent warming of the northern lands. But did anyone tell you that in east Antarctica the Adélie penguins and Cape petrels are turning up at their spring nesting sites around nine days later than they did 50 years ago? While sea-ice has diminished in the Arctic since 1978, it has grown by 8% in the Southern Ocean.

    So one awkward question you can ask, when you’re forking out those extra taxes for climate change, is “Why is east Antarctica getting colder?” It makes no sense at all if carbon dioxide is driving global warming.

    Maybe we all should have an open mind on this and not jump to any quick unscientific conclusions.

  34. Vegar-It appears to me you are taking the Sun which controls 98% of Earths” climate and the Earth itself which is the other 2% out of the equation (read super Toba or super Yellowstone volcanic eruptions or about Indias’ Duccan volcanic fields 200,000 sq mi or Columbian volcanic fields 150,000 sq mi and many volcanic events). In the overall sceam of things, humans controls a very small fraction of .1% (the period before the 1) of Earths’ climate. Global warming is a concern, however, events outside of humans’ influence is a much bigger conern -this is a non-technical feed and should remain so, as many have interesting and humorous ideas about this feed. It appears to me you are trying to say that humans controls everything which to me, with your statement ‘ world is flat, 6000 years old’ -you are trying to convince others on this feed the Sun and the Earth is not important, you are trying to force your ‘religion’ on others .
    I had already admit humans are histories worst polluters and killers in Earths’ history, but, humans will not be capable of controlling the Sun or Earths’ violent behavior, in fact, I should use the word ‘ never be capable’

  35. Casey S., you don’t know if you would break your legs if you jumped out of a window but that doesn’t mean you jump. The point is that this issue is so complicated that no scientist can be certain about it but when the risk is so big you have to question whether to keep taking it.

    There are other reasons to be sensible about this stuff, the build up of landfill, over-development of industrialised countries (I live in the UK, we are over-populated), use of resources when we have perfectly good ways to re-use objects. Perhaps you need to look at the broader reality?

  36. I don’t understand why people seem so resistant to the one single fact that global temperatures are rising – as measured by satellites – why that is so hard to grasp.

    All those arguments above, against global warming, amount to saying that there is minimal traffic in New York City because their particular alley doesn’t have much.

    It’s poor thinking, and unexcusable.

  37. You know what the ultimate consequence of Global Warming is gonna be? Change. Nothing more. Even the most pessimistic tree hugger won’t suggest that GW is an Extinction Event. All any of them say is that things won’t be the same as they are now. Well, guess what? Sooner or later, that’s going to be true no matter what we do! You can’t have 6+ billion people walking around on a geologically active planet and expect that every tomorrow will be like today. The fact that we can, to some extent, predict the future doesn’t mean that we can always keep it from happening. Our ancestors knew this and just accepted that adapting to their environment was a part of their lives. All we need to do to respond to GW is to relearn this. Things may not be the same but it’s not going to be the end either. Besides, spending trillions just to postpone the inevitable is irresponsible.

  38. Well, I see that Nancy has posted another of her pro-alarmist screeds but in following this site for several years now I have NEVER seen ANY article to the contrary.

    How come you didn’t post this about James Hansen’s supervisor at NASA declaring himself a skeptic recently, saying that:

    ” Theon declared “climate models are useless.” “My own belief concerning anthropogenic climate change is that the models do not realistically simulate the climate system because there are many very important sub-grid scale processes that the models either replicate poorly or completely omit,” Theon explained.”

    ““Hansen was never muzzled even though he violated NASA’s official agency position on climate forecasting (i.e., we did not know enough to forecast climate change or mankind’s effect on it). Hansen thus embarrassed NASA by coming out with his claims of global warming in 1988 in his testimony before Congress,” Theon wrote.”

    Let’s agree for the moment that the earth is warming. This article says there will be “dustbowls”. Perhaps, in certain areas. But who can say that the world will be worse off for humans if vast stretches of tundra and icy wastelands in Siberia, the Yukon, Greenland, and even Antarctica become productive farmland. These regions also have huge deposts of minerals, metals, and fossil fuels that dwarf existing proven reserves. So the human race slowly shifts its population centers.

    So what?

    Political liberals have latched onto “climate change” as their new religion, and woe be it to the heretics who disagree.

    This is no longer science. Note the certainty with which the alarmists say the “science” is irrefutable, indisputable, and all-powerful. Just like the former gods they now disavow. Even those commenting here, with probably zero scientific background, are ready to damn the skeptics to hell.

  39. Well said geokstr.

    Liked this part –
    “Note the certainty with which the alarmists say the “science” is irrefutable, indisputable, and all-powerful.”

    They (alarmists) should look up the meaning of the word science. 🙂

  40. For a comprehensive, scientific presentation, albiet written in 2005, of issues and evidence please read The Weather Makers, Tim Flannery, Atlantic Monthly Press, New York, 2005, ISBN-10: 0-87113-935-9

  41. Warming is only one of many shoes we are dropping. Deforestation, desertification, salination of soils, depletion of the oceans. Extinction is facing most large mammels populations. There are way too many of us; and the only real question is how many of us and what technologies, what quality of life, wiil survive.

  42. So, creationists deny all the studies that have been done, showing without a shadow of a doubt evolution happening; GW deniars deny the actual measurements made of both CO2 concentrations and global temperatures, among other things which prove without a shadow of a doubt that GW is real and antropogenic in nature. Then, after denying the facts, they both ask “where are the facts”? Sweet moronosity, baby!

    There is no reality-based person, in this day and age, that can go on denying global warming. The evidence is overwhelming.

    And to those reality-based people who, despite accepting the facts, downplay them, saying it’s just change and the planet will cope with it as it has done in the past, I say: that is true. Global warming is not, by any means, the end of life on Earth. It may even be a great thing for many species.

    But there is a huge but: we’re here. And we’re here with a fragile and crowded (and made more fragile because it’s so crowded) civilization that will revert to barbarism all too quickly if an ecological breakdown occurs. It wouldn’t be the first time – see the Mayans; see the Easter Islanders, see what caused the invasion of the Roman Empire by barbarians -, although this is the first time we actually have the means to understand that and try to do something about it. Global Warming isn’t a threat for the planet: it’s a threat for us. A rise of a few degrees in global temperatures will cause global famine, and wars and devastation as despaired people do what despaired people always do when they are left with no options.

    Have no illusions: our current industrial civilization evolved because we had a stable environment which allowed us to cultivate food in abundance. Even a relativaly benign climate change will destroy that. And that will destroy us. Not the planet: us.

  43. When I was a child the most powerful theory prescribing environmental disaster was the so called “population explosion”, introduced to the public consciousness by the Club of Rome.

    When a child, I grew up in the absolute belief that my world will end up in a catastrophy caused by an exponentially rising human population. At that time there was still no private TV in Germany. So the prophets of the Doom spread their message through parastatal media. Some Germans of my age will remember names like Heinz Haber and Hoimar von Ditfurth, whose daughter is now a half forgotten fury in the left after missing a big carrier in the party Die Grünen.

    When I was about fourteen years old, my bearded biology teacher teached and promised us that we will all be doomed within ten years due to our human reproduction.

    But nowadays Germany’s population, like in nearly all other industrialized countries, decreases. The new “catastrophy” has quite the opposite reason of the former one. So we import immense masses of migrants on behalf of the new apologists, influencing the “ecology” of our former stable society while not knowing what the costs are (but while this costs do outgrow).

    For some Global Warming is a bypass, an indispensable element of the critique of the capitalistic system. In the thinking of most of the political left capitalism does destroy life. So, because nearly all aspects of our modern societies are grounded on the use of hydrocarbon (as was in the former Soviet union), Global Warming for them became THE [!] argument on behalf of their ideology.

    By the way: I do take climate change seriously.

  44. Well said, dollhopf. Bankrupting western civilization to reduce mankind’s 0.28% contribution to 0.18%. What is the real goal, here? Meanwhile we need to research a strong enough cork for all the volcanoes of the world, any of which can produce a medium fart at any time that would make all that work meaningless.

    It’s a shame AGW has prevailed as the dominant ecological argument. What a waste!

  45. hello Davey,

    while preparing my natural food spinach – meanwhile it is time for dinner in Middle Europe – I have still time to answer.

    You argued that it’s a shame AGW has prevailed as the dominant ecological argument and What a waste!

    I, in contrast, desperately hope that the desperate efforts to get partially rid of fossil fuel will lead to independency from all those antidemocratic constraints induced by the oil producing Hugo Rafael Chávez Fríases and Ahmadinedschads of the past.

    I have a preference for change – particularly for man made change. And the argument of GW leads to Global Independence at last.

  46. Hello astronomy fans! Last year snow in Minnesota arrived on December 1st and stayed till April.

    This year it arrived on November 30th and now its so cold in Minnesota, Al Gore is burning tires!

    This is proof positive that I am single handily winning the war against GLOBAL WARMING (shudder).

    Please send your Thank You cards (and checks payable) to: marcellus.c/oUniverse Today!

  47. dollhopf ,

    I concur with you. Looking forward, yes, the sooner the better, as to when we get of the finite source of energy that is petroleum. Realistically, I see that we won’t get serious about it, until the actual end of that source is within sight. No judgements from me in that – it is just too cheap and efficient.

    My point was that there ARE significant problems with our pollution and the environment, that are now secondary (philosophical and financial), due to the climate\weather boogeyman strategy.

    Enjoy your dinner (and for me, back to the stars)!

  48. CO2 comprises only 0.03% of the atmosphere. There’s no way that even dramatic increases at this level can cause Global Warming. Plants “eat” it as fast as we make it. The planet’s been warming since the last ice age over 12,000 years ago. It’s still warming, but humans have little to do with it.

  49. Universe Today, apparently there’s a great need of general articles about the workings of our atmosphere, able to explain to common-sense-driven and not very knowledgeable people how vast the impacts of seemingly insignificant components can be.

    In any case, the regulations concerning air quality might give people such as neoguru a hint about that. Stuff like the American National Ambient Air Quality Standards, or the European National Emission Ceilings.

    Graphs of the atmospheric concentration of CO2 over the last couple of centuries are also available all over the place, proving that plants most definitely do not “eat it as fast as we make it” (the major planetary carbon sink isn’t even the plants: it’s fitoplankton). It’s also BS that the planet has been warming since the last ice age: it has been experiencing fluctuations around 15ºC (plus or minus about 1 ºC) for the last 10 thousand years. All this BS has been debunked ad nauseam before by actual scientists, not by cranks in the pocket of the oil industry.

  50. hello Davey,

    fossil fuel is only ostensibly cheap for the U.S. Read what T. Boone Pickens says about it at pickensplanDOTcom: *)

    “In additional to putting our security in the hands of potentially unfriendly and unstable foreign nations, we spent $475 billion on foreign oil in 2008 alone. That’s money taken out of our economy and sent to foreign nations, and it will continue to drain the life from our economy for as long as we fail to stop the bleeding.”

    And do remember how unfriendly the Russians became while they swam in petrodollars a view month ago and how they spend billions for new weapon systems.

    On the other hand, the politically decreed reduction of human made carbon dioxide will be the fountain of innovation in a gigantic extent, including the invention of new technologies and creation of new jobs.

    *) The anti-spam-filter of UT would supress a posting containing a link for several hours. So replace the “DOT” with a real dot in “pickensplanDOTcom”

  51. jorge- I agree with your comments. I’ve stated earlier it was much warmer 1000 years ago, the Viking era. I’ve stated the Sun controls 98% of our climate,the Earth itself 2%, humans, very low <.2%. I admit our atmosphere is filthy and would like to see distant mountains and the stars in its full glory and breath better air. These so calle ‘Global Warming’ advocates wants to create a breaucracy which calls for more funds, funds equals power, power demands more funds which equals more power. I have known advocates of battery cars-I said, batterys demands rare minerals which the US has little of,producing batterys is filthy and said batterys are not re-cylable and toxic- then I said if battery powered cars are going to be forced on the US, where is the power going to come from- I’ve talked with so-call ‘advocate’ they said solar or fusion. I said solar is near it prime potential and research is not going to make a breakthrough to make it 100 time or 1000 times better- I said perhaps 20-50% better-to power a large Metro area would require thousands of squal miles of solar collectors,so the ‘advocate’ shut up about this. Fusion power came up next, I said you think current technology is going to mimic what the Sun ( 850,000-900,000 miles in diameter-the Sun does flucuate!) .fusions
    hydrogen to helium losing 6million tons a secondth! I said these so called Tokamak are just a research in progress and no one living today will see fusion power economicially feasible-this is far into the future,probably centuries. To these pro global warning ‘advocates’, what is your solution without costing TRILLIONS of US dollars ?!
    Remember what I said about the Sun ‘chilling’ out or ‘running a fever’, humans can do nothing about it! A super volcanic eruption, which I’ve stated a few examples, can outdo what humans put in the atmosphere by incredible magnitudes!
    I hate to see money wasted on so call ‘end of the world global warming scares’- much research should be done what humans must do in case the Sun decides to ‘act up’ or the Earth decides to ‘throw up or belch’, I like to have clean air but without bankrupting world economies and I hate to see these so-called
    Hollywood Stars who says there’s global warming but these chumps drives large SUV and has private jets-who the F___ are they trying to fool?! As long as they got what they want, they say screw the rest. I say Practice What You Preach!!! or STFU.

  52. Sorry to all about my tiraids, I made a mistake by saying batteries are not re-cyclable, we can recover 10 cents per $1.00 cost of recycling, not very economical!!. Perhaps in a generation, perhaps 30% of
    cost of recycling-still a losing proposition!!
    In my last feed, the person who advocated battery cars said we should build nuclear power plants-I said will you like it here in the city-he said no-I said there is no place that doesn’t have neighbors-everyone is NIMBY.
    I said how will they get rid of the waste, this fool said shoot it at the Sun-after a 25 minute tiraid from me on how dumb this person is, he did not want to talk with me anymore. Fuelcells seem feasible, it does have problems should there be a collusion which hasn’t been studied well or buried in the back pages to downplay its hazards. Natural gas also seems feasible except the production and extraction will have to increase greatly and the cost of extraction will rise as the ‘easy’ accessed natural gas is depleted.
    I asked the pro Global Warming advocates
    what are your ideas and what are their hazards. Anyone can have an idea they pick out of the air but is it economically feasible?!
    FYI, I am a former ‘ middile of the road evironmentalist’ . Now, I am cost conscience
    and a very serious amateur astronomer.

  53. The only thing irreversible is the programs and taxes this fiasco will spawn. Jorge, I’m an atheist, and I think AGW is a complete crock of excrement. How dare you compare AGW skepticism and Creationism! Correlation does not equal causation my friend, or didn’t they teach you that in your stats and science classes, mate?

    Show me a single climate model that can accurately RETRODICT climate, and we’ll have something to possibly consider. Until then, this subject is most definitely NOT settled. BTW, apparently your news sources didn’t carry the report that 600 Earth scientists at a UN conference recently dismissed AGW.

  54. Vernon-I did not fully read Jorge previous feed,I am an agnostic. Climatologists and other Scientist who said the climate flucuations are not fully caused by humans but actually by the Sun and the Earth itself has been fired!!!! The ultra pro ‘end of the world global warming’ newspapers and other militant fringe thinking environmental organizations had placed so much heat on the NOAA organization to fire these ‘not playing ball or did not jump and said how high’ Climatolgists and Scientists NOAA was forced to fire them!!!!!

  55. I compare the two things because they are basically the same: a refusal to accept all evidence due to ideologically or religiously motivated blindness.

    Correlation does not equal causation, indeed. That’s why for the last 30 years or so climatologists have been checking all other possible causes for the raise in global temperatures. They have been disproven, one after another, and the only one remaining now is the antropogenic increase in CO2 concentrations and other greenhouse gases. Correlation does not equal causation. But when you have correlation with the only possible cause remaining, you have a scientific fact before your eyes.

    Of course, if you take your so-called “information” from FOX News, you’ll never know that. Just as you’ll never know many other facts.

    That UN conference you mention was the one that took place in Poznan, in Poland, last December. In it, 11,000 scientists took part. Eleven thousand. Your beloved 600 (many of which are people with close ties with the petrochemical industry, and I don’t really count those as scientists in anything concerning global warming: they are protecting their asses, not making science) are 5% of that total. I call that a overwhelming consensus.

    The authority in all things concerning climate change is the UN’s IPCC. It’s a smallish body of scientists that review published research on the subject and produce a yearly report. It has received criticism both saying it’s way too alarmist and that it’s way too conservative in its assessment. That probably means it’s quite balanced. Go read its reports, and don’t forget to take note of the evolution in tone over the years.

    And do stop watching FOX News. That thing kills neurons by the thousands.

  56. Jorge- I rarely watch Fox News and Network News. The methods of measuring data for CO2 changed over a 30 year period, in other words, it is Not consistent due to improving technology. One major change in Meteorology is ‘Enhanced Fujita Scale’, an F5 tornado is now winds over 200mph instead of 261 under the original Fujita Scale.One of my major interest on the internet is Climatology- I have over 500 favorites having to do with past climates of many areas of tthe workl. I am open to all to ALL evidence but since I worked for the State Government of California, I am also wise to how data can be
    skewed for failed projects and make it appear it is running well . Since your findings say it is ~30 years and I say methods for measuring data has changed, I check to see if such data has been skewed to appear a serious problem is occuring.. Your mention of the UN’s IPCC, the organization hand pics
    scientists to follow the authoritys way of thinking-when they say jump, the new scientist better say ‘how high’. Some of these
    scientist are paid to ‘critizice’ findings, in order to appear to be a ‘balanced organization’. These ‘critics’ otherwise follows the organizations ideals. I’ve said in a previous feed, Climatologist and Scientist has been forced out because they published their findings that the Sun and Earth are the main cause of our climate-they did not ‘play ball’. The climatologist and Scientist now working for NOAA will not say anything because they need their jobs. One thing I am not is a chump to believe what so-called organizations say, I worked for the California Government for 25 years and know how anything can be skewed! .

  57. “And do stop watching FOX News. That thing kills neurons by the thousands.”

    About like reading your posts. You make some great points and then have to undermine your arguments with arrogance and broad-sweeping generalizations. In fact, that’s the EXACT experience I have while watching Fox, ironically. You just saved me the trouble.

  58. Jorge- I wonder how much ’empire building’
    UN’s IPCC people are thinking about , the more skewing, the more funding, the more funding, the more power, the more power, the more money,etc.
    I’m returning back to Astronomy

  59. Hey Jorge, I’m a Creationist, and most creationists don’t deny global warming if it ONLY means the Earth is getting warmer. What we do deny is that it is significantly caused by humans and will continue to get warmer. Rather, many of us believe that the global temperature is Cyclical-
    Global Warming-Global Cooling and back again.

  60. marcellus -Minnesota is a beautiful area,but living in Sacramento California, I don’t think I can handle the winters there, I wish the rains returns because the nights drop to 33F.
    Now I know you say that is warm, Lol, but we are too spoiled here. Take care

  61. So if the planet is getting warmer (according to the global warming propaganda machine) and the rising temp of the earth is irriversable how do you explain scientists all over the world coming together with evidence that says the planets temp has been dropping since 1998 and there is imore ice in the artic now than there was in 1972. Hhhmmm!

  62. Andrew Says:
    January 29th, 2009 at 5:09 am
    “I don’t understand why people seem so resistant to the one single fact that global temperatures are rising – as measured by satellites – why that is so hard to grasp.”

    Lucy Says:
    January 30th, 2009 at 3:11 am
    “So if the planet is getting warmer (according to the global warming propaganda machine) and the rising temp of the earth is irriversable how do you explain scientists all over the world coming together with evidence that says the planets temp has been dropping since 1998”

  63. I do not understand at all the wild arm waving and ad hominem arguments on global climate change, when a sober analysis of well-documented earth history, which almost all studies cant, would be more helpful and useful. I am particularly puzzled by the ability of the human mind to seize on one datum point as the final word on the debate. While that works for politicians who want to lie and cheat and steal from people, it shouldn’t be part of a debate like this. Doing so causes confusion, and in the end if it is not st opped, it will result in either the wrong “fix” or an horrifyingly fatal inaction which will end up depopulating earth within a short period of time from its 6.5 billion to probably less than 2 billions of people. The one meaningful certainty in the debate, however, is the one to which all researchers pay lip service without proper voicing of the necessary entailments–their grants too much a factor, perhaps?. The one certain thing is that there is ample evidence that there is an approximate 11,000 year interglacial period of warming interrupted by an ice age cycle that has been going on regularly during the Holocene–our period. And the end of the last glacial was the beginning of our current warming, interglacial, trend beginning about 11,000 years ago—right on schedule—and that if the cycle holds true, then the debate from the “is it warming or is it cooling crowd” is meaningless unless we prepare the whole world for it. And sad to me is that a not insignificant number of those who should be most skilled in the debate appear to have little appreciation for what might be confounding variables and what might they mean for their research. All of which results in leading them to differ from each other over observations that are accurate observations of rapid and radical increases in oscillations of temperature data, which signal quite accurately an instability in the climate as it swings closer and closer to its tipover point. A point that could be reached tomorrow as it finally oscillates right over the edge into a well-undertstood and routine ice age.

  64. jkw Says:
    I do not understand at all the wild arm waving and ad hominem arguments on global climate change.

    I’ll help you understand.
    There are perhaps a few sides but I’ll make this simple and present two sides, not that you don’t know this but to illustrate my point.

    One side agrees that climate change is caused by humans and is occurring at present.
    The other side disagrees that climate change is caused by humans and perhaps is not even occurring on scales being suggested. (again I state made simple into two sides)

    This means if humans cannot change our planets climate on the scales being suggested then we are helpless to avert future climate disasters or even possibly prepare ourselves for the disasters, while if we can change our climate then maybe we can control it to a degree, hence the wild arm waving etc.

    It is good to debate the issue, but you seem to seek to try to “fix” a problem predicted on past environmental conditions, to attempt such, we should debate first if we can “fix” anything and if anything needs a “fix”.

  65. I hate it when Astronomy Today publishes these GW articles. I have never seen a GW article written by Nancy Atkinson that wasn’t biased in the very same way that this article is. Frasier, I would like to make a suggestion. You point out that this is an earth “science” subject and appropriate for Astronomy Today. I must point out that “science” is not biased, people are. If you must publish articles on this subject can we get a 50:50 mix of pro AGW to anti AGW? As you can see from and many well respected scientist’s work, AGW is not an agreed upon hypothesis in the scientific community. To give us 50:50 it would seem more like you are promoting science and not an agenda.
    You may also want to look at…

  66. dollhopf ,

    replying to your earlier email – I agree with your premise that having the source of energy in the hands of a few (some legitimate, some ilegitamate, some in between, good, bad whatever) is not ideal. Petroleum, while dirty, and finite, and it’s costs leads to wealth and power for those we dont necessarily wish to have, is what we have. I would certainly love to have a free\cheap energy source that could be available for everyone! I envision a future where this is possible, and the only use for petroleum is plastic manufactuing.

    The “fix” is what I am afraid of…. very afraid. One thing that science can conclude with consensus is that there have been ice ages in the past, and there will be ice ages in the future. The AGW theory and resulting hysteria to “fix” something appears to me that some of us want to hasten the inevitable return of the next one. hooray..?

  67. The methods of measuring data for CO2 changed over a 30 year period, in other words, it is Not consistent due to improving technology.

    Ouch! Do you really believe that we know about CO2 concentrations only by direct measurements of current air conditions?!

    All past measurements of CO2 concentrations are cross-checked whenever a new technological breakthrough happens with new measurements made with “fossil” air pockets found in a number of materials, most of all ice. And also in artificially created ones. That’s how all new methods are calibrated. And that’s how climatologists make sure the new data is comparable to older data.

    The same happens with other molecules too, not just CO2.

    As for the rest, yeah, there’s a big conspiracy involving the UN, Greenpeace, at least 95% of the world scientists and the martians, to make the Earth’s economy plummet so much that we’ll welcome our alien overlords. You’re totally right.

  68. davey Says:
    The “fix” is what I am afraid of…. very afraid. ……

    I completely agree.

  69. Jorge-I don’t believe in JFK assasination conspiracy ,nor martians or aliens, or any of these crackpot theory. I believe we landed on the moon,the Solar System was created ~6billion years ago. No I’m not that gullible or weak-minded, however, I do take offense, however slight, that you believe I fall into that catagory of people who believe in UFO, aliens among us, our earth was created 6000 years ago, the world is flat is ,other crackpot theorys- however, you may be gullible to believe anything whatever someone says because you want to. I’ve worked near our procedure, procurement writters from time to time when I worked for the Treasury Dept State of California 25 years-10 years ago, there was still a department concerning Horseshoe fitting regulations with it’s beaurcracy,and other departments concerning subject matters concerning the 19th century-I’ve was shown some of the papers and laughed like hell-these people knows their jobs are obsolete but they are trying to protect them by skewing their documents. In fhe Federal Government, in the Reagon Years, I heard about the Department of Heium reserves,part of our needs for National Security-it has it’s large beaurcracy- why does the US needs enough helium for 10-20000 years, do we have a fleet of helium blimps to protect our homeland or to conduct warfare. If you read all my feeds, I’ve also stated our atmosphere is filthy and can use some cleaning, but not at the cost of bankrupting world economies.
    What I’m getting from the beginning,of my feeds,without trying to blame anyone, is there are programs in the overbloated UN that are un-necessary and many areas that are truly wasteful. I also know about how some of the UN departments wants to feel more noticed and important and do an ‘Empire Building’ to be more noticed and get more funding to creat more power which means more funding , in order to thrive and continue to exist.. If you want to believe the findings of the
    UN’s IPCC papers, fine. But, do not say I am one of these crackpot who believes in UFOs, aliens among us,etc. because I look at UN documents and checked to see if/how they have been skewed and may not believe their findings because they may be ’empire building’. There are far more day-to-day problems occuring, and potentially catastrophic sudden events like the Earth belching out a super Volcanic eruption-studies should be made to save as much of the population and economies of the affected nations. If you look back to some of my feeds, and go to where I chewed out someone for 25 minutes because he is so dumb, he was my boss! In 1 month, he was forced to retire or be fired for incompetency. I like to keep this feed a civil minded affair as I am still looking for ideas on how we cn fix our filthy atmosphere without bankrupting us and be safe. However, if anyone says I’m a crackpot because I don’t fully believe so and so potentially skewed papers, I don’t want to go to war- because I will finish it!!!

  70. Jorge, Living in the Sacramento Valley of California for 27 years showed a noticeable improvement of air-quality, however, the entire Sacramento-San Joaquin Valley is a 50,000 sq mi near sea-level basin in the center surrounded in all sides by coastal mountain ranges to the high Sierras East, and the only large opening is the low delta area getting cool Pacific air thru the Golden Gate, thus Sacramento in July averages 94 day 60 night- Redding, Calif.200 miles north, about the Northern end of the Sacramento Valley averages 101 day 70 night , a true Mediterranean climate ,rainy winters, hot and dry summers, but without the high humiditiy endemic to the Mediterranean Sea coastal areas-I was there for 2 months last Summer., while 300 miles to the south is Bakersfield at the southern end of the great valley 101 days, 70 nights,a semi-arid climate,meager rains in winter, hot and dry in Summer. What I’m now getting at is, in the wintertime, when the weather is stagnant for days to weeks, the pollution can become incredible as we get the emissions from the San Francisco Bay Area hugh metro area. The entire great valley floor can have temperatures of 38 days 34 night for days or weeks and may have persistant thick tule fog, but when you get to 1500 feet or go to the coast, the temperature may be 60-65 days 50-55 nites. When you get to 1500feet or higher in the Sierra foothills, the pollution of the valley is readily seen. This air inversion is normal for such a enclosed geographic area, but the pollution is NOT . Anyone with hay fever or asthma can be affected and suffer, so I know very well about air pollution and there can still be improvements in auto-industral emissions with todays technology, but will take time. So, if anyone believes I don’t know about air pollutiion has not read all my feeds. However, what I said about the Sun and the Earth and humans contributions to global warming, and by UN’s IPCC findings, I stand by my conclusions.!!!

  71. Two points to throw in for consideration:
    Environmentalists and politicians have raised the issue of CO2 “pollution” to a high level, let us not forget about reducing “traditional” pollutants (Dioxins, cadmium, lead etc.) that environmentalists, politicians and scientists can all agree on.

    Also, Actions to reduce CO2 emissions are not without cost, on an increasing scale, potentially causing mild inconvenience, distraction from issues we can actually do something about, financial burden, political manipulation, enforced competition for resources, conflict, war, distraction from real and important issues.

  72. Jorge and all-I realize this is a feed for global warming-but I will use California is a micrcosm as a model that can affect much of the Earth . Studies, while much incomplete, cover 5000 years of precipitation in California. There was period of prolonged rainy periods which caused the interior valley to have a relatively shallow sea year-round for +10 years,while there was prolonged droughts that lasted for decades. In 1976-1977, the worst drought in at least 100 years affected the entire far west-I was living in Oregon then, there was talks of Southern California creating a pipeline to get water from the Columbia River, at that time, I was an anti-Californian, I said if a pipeline is made, I will blow it up,Lol. However, now, I have been Californated,lol. California,except for the SE part, has a Mediterranean climate,mild moist winters and hot dry summers except the cool-cold coast which has no equal in the Mediterranean Sea which is much warmer, only a small coastal area of Chile which also has a Mediterranean climate, may equal the cool coast of California. California , of all the Mediterranean climates, has the most variability or undependabilty of annual precipitation. The decade of the 1990s was the most moist in California since records was started in enough locations to have a
    true nature of California precipitation, about 1870. In the last few years, there are rainy-cool late fall, early winter rainy periods, then dry January or warm rains later which do not contribute to the snowpack. 2-3 years of this is making us very weary of water shortage ,
    as our population is nearing 40 million people. Many of us know about the 1976-1977 drought, but there was much smaller population then, but alot of us are scared if we have a prolonged drought-perhaps this time, money talks, and perhaps we can build a pipeline thru Oregon, but they may resist!
    There was postings on this feed of over-population, California water shortage is indeed a micrcosm of probable large regions of areas with over-population and how would it be difficult to get throught this possible event- it will be a very serious problem!!!!.

  73. S.E.Cycloid – I agree on your statements, you have very great points, there are many other issues that are a constant worry.

  74. I should have added on my feed about drought ,, it killed millions in ths sub Sahara
    regions causing migrations,causing constant wars-many other areas are affected
    in areas of the world that has undependable
    rainfall-these regions are populated during years of rainy periods only to go back to a drought condition that will last for years, killing many more millions.

  75. jkw-I understand your comments and you have great points. Oscillations in the Earths
    temperature is a natural occuring thing, caused by the Sun, the migration of Earths
    positions in distance to the Sun.In about the timeframe you infer, the Earth will be closest
    to the Sun for the Northern Hemisphere summer, which is the opposite of what occurs today-this will cause migration of the populations and changes to the climate of the Earth. The change to the climate is in 12000 years is still not well understood, even with the use of the most powerful supercomputers -there are too many arguements of the Scientists and Climatologist of what will happen. But I agree with you,, great changes will happen. On a much smaller time scale, Our Sun and Earth, with a extremely tiny, tiny contribution of humans, controls our climate for better or worst. Humans will just have to be prepared and accept the changes that occurs. As drought causes migrations causing wars,
    an ice age will cause migrations that will start
    a protracted super wars, your population estimates is a good ballpark figure when the smoke clears from constant war and famine.

  76. I am happy to read posts about people who are much more concerned about environmental issues that is now killing or making sick many people. Air pollution with toxic particles, contaminated groundwater and landscape-a very great contribution to our future well being is finding out about Freon and it’s associated products(halon,etc) that was unquestionably destroying our ozone protecting us, getting lead out of gasoline, however , there is still far more areas to fix up, so much toxic landfills had toxic fluids migrated to groundwater making
    ‘drilling for water for your drinking water’ a very dangerous situation. To clean up the damage caused by toxic dumping will take a long time, decades and probably total many ttrillions of dollars, but it eventually has to be done-otherwise, there will remain large tracts of land unsuitable for human habitation or production of food.. Our air pollution is still a very serious concern (see me previous feeds)
    and makes people sick or shorten their lifes.
    With todays technology vechicles and power plants can be made to produce less pollution and with improved technology can be made almost pollutio free. It is unfortunate that petroleum will still be the dominant source of power for vechicles for at least the next 50 years, much is this problem has to do with creating an infrastructure of stations and distribution networks (anyone read how long it took in the US to develop a network of service stations throughout the US?) to service vehicles using clean energy sources deemed suitable in 50 years. All of the problems I;ve stated are happening now and will not go away for a long and will take a lot of funds but is necessary.
    Now for an issue that makes my blood boil is listening to these so call’ end of the world’ fringe thinking environmentalist talking about
    global warming with a questionable UN organization and questionable papers who wants to get the cream of the crop in funds for their own benefits and become part of a empire building organization. I am sorry to all I took offense to a remark a ‘follower’ made, however,again, what I’ve stated about the Sun and Earth controlling +99.9% of our Earths’ climate , I stand by my conclusions.!
    We have far more serious problems now instead of thinking about ’empire builders’!

  77. Has San Francisco airport installed its carbon offset machines yet? These are for your “green” pious people, who are conscious of having to commit grave “green” sins by flying and therefore, can buy “green indulgences” to purge their souls beforehand.

  78. I totally agree with the sentiment of not polluting our beloved planet.

    However, people, especially the Global Warming crowd tend to overlook the progress made by humans in recent years.

    The Mississippi River was so polluted back in the ’70’s and ’80’s that it could not support a mayfly population. If you swam in it during those years, you could hardly see your hand in front of your face.

    Now in the mid ’90’s and up to the present, mayflies not only flourish, they are back to being the orignial pesky road slick hazards (during brief spells) that they used to be.

    If you swim in Big Muddy now, you can actually see a few feet in front of you, and you can eat more meals of fish and enjoy the bald eagles that have made a comeback.

    People can make a real difference on a personal level by collectint the walnuts that make their yards so messy in the fall and bringing them out to any wooded area and just dumping them on the edge of the forest. The squirrels will eat a lot of them, but they’ll bury many more, forget about them and they will become new carbon scrubbers for Planet Earth.

    If you have ash or maple trees, you can collect their seed, bring them out to any non-agricultural wooded or adjacent field area and toss them up in the air on a breezy day and lots of that seed will become trees. It doesn’t take much money, you just have to get off your ass and put in some effort.

    Governments, if they are REALLY serious about Global Warming, could fund reforestation efforts to reclaim desert or arid regions and give impovershed populations jobs to tend them, water them and keep them going by using desalinazation plants near the oceans.

    Combating Global Warming isn’t rocket science, it’s called work. That’s a hard concept for some people.

  79. I wonder why the term “Global Warming” Came to be when the term “Interglacial Period” was already around and perfectly defined our Current Environmental state?

    We are around 11,000 Years past the Glacial Maximum of the Last Ice Age, Ice Ages seem to occur on a reasonably predictable 26,000 Year Cycle, ergo we are nearing the middle of the Hot period between Ice Ages. It’s akin to a seasonal cycle but on a much longer scale.

  80. I wonder if this cycle is in any way related to the Mayan Calendar? Not all the doomsday tripe that is pontificated by conspiracy theorists, but if their calculations measured the affects and times of climate changes and if they were somehow able to predict when the next cycle would begin. Who knows?

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