The reality of global warming.

Discussion in 'Science and Technology' started by Old Rocks, Nov 1, 2008.

  1. Old Rocks
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    Old Rocks Diamond Member

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    Today we live in a world that is rapidly changing. And the rate of change is accelerating. The men and women that study the natural world have reached an overwhelming consensus on the cause of this change. It is the burning of fossil fuels, increasing the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere by almost 40%. Every scientific society in the world, every National Academy of Science, and every major university, has published policy statements to this effect. So why are their people that are questioning the science?

    Their objections have little to do with the evidence, rather it is the protection of the present people that are profiting off of the use of the fossil fuels that they are trying to protect. They have yet to offer a single acceptable theory as to why the CO2 is not the cause of the present warming. Nor can they explain the melting of the glaciers and polar caps by denying the fact of the warming.

    It is time for us, as a society, to address this problem. If we fail to do so, we doom our children and grandchildren to some very difficult times.
     
  2. Skeptik
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    Skeptik Astute observer

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    The average temperature of the globe is increasing.

    Part of that increase is due to cyclical changes in the climate of the Earth, so the heandinthesanders keep telling us that it's all natural.

    Most of the change is not natural, and is due to the burning of fossil fuels. Some of the change is due to warming, the cause becoming the effect, and the effect the cause. Warmer weather melts ice caps faster, for example, and the resulting water absorbs more heat than the ice it replaced. Melting permafrost, as another example, releases methane, a potent greenhouse gas.

    Global climate change has been made into a partisan issue, most likely due to th fact that Al Gore, who has been beating the drum for awareness, is a Democrat.

    If a Democrat says something, whether or not it is a political statement, then a Republican has to refute it. That's just the natural order of things political.

    So, the itainthappenin argument is based on phobia, to be specific, it's called algoraphobia.

    But, the logical question to ask once we accept the truth is this:

    Can we reverse global climate change?
     
  3. Old Rocks
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    Old Rocks Diamond Member

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    Unfortunetely, the answer is, not in our lifetimes. There is about a 50 year lag in the effects from the present level of greenhouse gases. We can, by scaling the emmissions of greenhouse gases back by at least 80% in a decade, fix the problem so that it is less of a problem for our grandchildren. Unless, of course, we have crossed a tipping point that we do not know about. That is a distinct possibility. Were that to the case, then the fat is in the fire, and we are in a survival situation for us, as a species.
     
  4. editec
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    editec Mr. Forgot-it-All

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    I sometimes wonder if the masters of the universe, recognizing that the carbon footprint of 6+ billion people is unsustainable, are screwing up the world (politically and economically, I mean) on purpose.

    If the world is thrown into a really serious worldwide depression we could easily see two billion people starved off in a year or so.

    Tamper with the system enough and you could starve off half the world's population.

    Hey, the above isn't a theory I adhere to, it's merely one of my idle speculations as I'm trying to figure out how such smart people as the world's elite can collectively do so many dumb things.
     
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2008
  5. 52ndStreet
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    The Earth has been going through cyclical Climate change for many Billions of years.
    Humans have nothing to do with the Earth getting warmer or colder.

    The human effect is neglegble. Less than 0.8%

    Volcanoes emit more CO2 gases than all the human population on the Earth combined. The Earth's
    Oceans release Billions of Tons of methane gas, which causes a more rapid increase in the Earth's temperature, than CO2 gases.

    And Scientists are discovering that Sun spot activity on the surface of the Sun, has
    a direct effect on the Earth's overall temperature.

    Human Global Warming is all media and Left wing liberal, and Green freaks hype!.
     
  6. Skeptik
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    Skeptik Astute observer

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    Is that based on the algoraphobia I described above, is it simply wishful thinking, or is it something else?
     
  7. 52ndStreet
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    Like I said in my post, algoraphobia, Al Gore, wishful thinking ,humans, have
    nothing to do with the Earth going through its natural cycle of "Earth cyclical climate change".
    This has been happening for billions of years.

    The Earth goes through its own natural cycles of hot and cold. It has been happening before humans started to release our small amounts of CO2 gases.

    The Earth's Oceans emit billions of tons of methane gas,which has been confirmed to speed up the Earth's temperature a lot faster than CO2 gases.
    The many Volcanoes emit CO2 gases also.

    And now Scientists are realizing that the Sun's Sun spot activity is directly
    influencing the Earth's overall temperature.
    And now Scientists have found Billions of tons of Ice in the North Pole that
    has Billions of tons of methane gases frozen in the Ice. They actually cut
    a piece of the ice from a lake , and set it on fire!
     
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2008
  8. Skeptik
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    Skeptik Astute observer

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    Yes, I believe I said that in my post:

    It's not all natural, however, and is proceding much more rapidly than it has in the past.
     
  9. 52ndStreet
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    It is not proceeding at a much more rapid pace now, as was the case in the past. It is proceeding at the same pace now, as it was in the Past.
    Human Global warming is all media hype,its all false. You have been lied to, scammed.!
     
  10. Old Rocks
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    [This story embargoed until 5 PM ET June 26, 2006 to coincide with publication in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.]

    FIRST COMPILATION OF TROPICAL ICE CORES SHOWS TWO ABRUPT GLOBAL CLIMATE SHIFTS ONE 5,000 YEARS AGO AND ONE CURRENTLY UNDERWAY
    COLUMBUS , Ohio For the first time, glaciologists have combined and compared sets of ancient climate records trapped in ice cores from the South American Andes and the Asian Himalayas to paint a picture of how climate has changed and is still changing in the tropics.






    Lonnie Thompson
    Their conclusions mark a massive climate shift to a cooler regime that occurred just over 5,000 years ago, and a more recent reversal to a much warmer world within the last 50 years.

    The evidence also suggests that most of the high-altitude glaciers in the planet's tropical regions will disappear in the near future. The paper is included in the current issue of the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Science.

    Lastly, the research shows that in most of the world, glaciers and ice caps are rapidly retreating, even in areas where precipitation increases are documented. This implicates increasing temperatures and not decreasing precipitation as the most likely culprit.

    The researchers from Ohio State University's Byrd Polar Research Center and three other universities combined the chronological climate records retrieved from seven remote locations north and south of the equator. Cores drilled through ice caps and glaciers there have captured a climate history of each region, in some cases, providing annual records and in others decadal averages.

    Approximately 70 percent of the world's population now lives in the tropics so when climate changes there, the impacts are likely to be enormous, explains Lonnie Thompson, professor of geological sciences at Ohio State.

    For the last three decades, Thompson has led nearly 50 expeditions to remote ice caps and glaciers to drill cores through them and retrieve climate records. This study includes cores taken from the Huascaran and Quelccaya ice caps in Peru; the Sajama ice cap in Bolivia; the Dunde, Guliya, Puruogangri and Dasuopu ice caps in China.

    For each of these cores, the team -- including research partner Ellen Mosley-Thompson, professor of geography at Ohio State extracted chronological measurements of the ratio of two oxygen isotopes -- O18 and O16 -- whose ratio serves as an indicator of air temperature at the time the ice was formed. All seven cores provided clear annual records of the isotope ratios for the last 400 years and decadally averaged records dating back 2000 years.


    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Our climate system is sensitive, and it can change abruptly due to either natural or to human forces. If what happened 5,000 years ago were to happen today, it would have far-reaching social and economic implications for the entire planet. The take-home message is that global climate can change abruptly, and with 6.5 billion people inhabiting the planet, that's serious.





    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    We have a record going back 2,000 years and when you plot it out, you can see the Medieval Warm Period (MWP) and the Little Ice Age (LIA), Thompson said. During the MWP, 700 to 1000 years ago, the climate warmed in some parts of the world. The MWP was followed by the LIA, a sudden onset of colder temperatures marked by advancing glaciers in Europe and North America .

    And in that same record, you can clearly see the 20th Century and the thing that stands out whether you look at individual cores or the composite of all seven is how unusually warm the last 50 years have been.

    There hasn't been anything in the record like it not even the MWP, Thompson said.

    The fact that the isotope values in the last 50 years have been so unusual means that things are dramatically changing. That's the real story here.

    While the isotope evidence is clear throughout all of the cores, Thompson says that the more dramatic evidence is the emergence of unfossilized wetland plants around the margin of the Quelccaya ice cap, uncovered as the ice retreated in recent years.

    First discovered in 2002, the researchers have since identified 28 separate sites near the margin of the ice cap where these ancient plants have been exposed. Carbon-dating revealed that the plants range in age from 5,000 to 6,500 years old.

    This means that the climate at the ice cap hasn't been warmer than it is today in the last 5,000 years or more, Thompson said. If it had been, then the plants would have decayed.

    The researchers say a major climate shift around 5,000 years ago in the tropics had to have cooled the region since the ice cap quickly expanded and covered the plants. The fact that they are now being exposed indicates that the opposite has occurred the region has warmed dramatically, causing the ice cap to quickly melt.

    The role of precipitation in the global retreat of alpine glaciers may have been clarified by this study. Some researchers, convinced that a reduction in local precipitation is causing their retreat, have been skeptical about the role of rising temperatures.

    While all the glaciers we have measured throughout the tropics are retreating, the local precipitation at all of these sites but one, has increased over the last century, Thompson said. That means that the retreat of the ice is driven mainly by rising temperatures.

    Changes in the oxygen isotope ratios over the past 100 years have also pointed to temperature, rather than precipitation, as the engine driving glacial retreat, he said.

    Tropical glaciers are the canaries in the coal mine' for our global climate system, he says, as they integrate and respond to most of the key climatological variables temperature, precipitation, cloudiness, humidity and radiation.

    Thompson said that the evidence arising from the tropics is particularly important. The uniformity of the climate in the tropics makes these kinds of records so critical since they tell us what is happening to global temperatures.

    What this is really telling us is that our climate system is sensitive, it can change abruptly due to either natural or to human forces, he said. If what happened 5,000 years ago were to happen today, it would have far-reaching social and economic implications for the entire planet.

    The take-home message is that global climate can change abruptly, and with 6.5 billion people inhabiting the planet, that's serious.

    Working along with Thompson and Mosley-Thompson on the project were Henry Brecher, Mary Davis, Ping-Nan Lin and Tracy Mashiotta, all with the Byrd Center; Blanca Leon of the University of Texas; Don Les of the University of Connecticut, and Keith Mountain of the University of Louisville.

    Support for the research came from the National Science Foundation, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and Ohio State.



    #


    Contact: Lonnie Thompson (614) 292-6652; Thompson.3@osu.edu.
     

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