Simple global warming question:

mattskramer

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I have a couple of honest questions for those who are concerned about man-made global warming and related issues. This is not a trick question. I don’t plan to argue politics with it.

How do you account for the multiple prehistoric ice ages? There was strong global heating and cooling and heating and cooling before man-made technology had an alleged impact on the environment.

How do you account for Mt. Vesuvius and Mt. Saint Helens? I contend that these volcanoes and other geologic events do more to influence the environment than does anything that man does. Did man cause these mountains to erupt?

Again, I do not want to argue for the sake of arguing. I have an open mind and do not have a hard opinion cast in stone. It would probably take very little to influence me one way or another. I looked at “An Inconvenient Truth.” I listen to Rush Limbaugh and Mike Savage.

Comments please.
 

TheStripey1

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Global Warming/Climate Change does not need our permission to happen.

It doesn't matter to me what is causing the current heating of our environment, what matters to me is that everyone sits around and tries to figure out who is to blame for it rather than trying to figure out what we can do to ensure our civilization doesn't go the way of the dinosaurs...

1) How many people were adversely affected the last time we had a climate change of this magnitude?
2) How many were forced to flee their low lying homes when the seas rose?
3) How many were killed in the ensuing crop failure driven famines?
4) How many died during the wars that ensued when major populations were forced to flee?

How many?
 

TheStripey1

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we NEED to start thinking about the alternatives...

like should we build a sea wall to protect our coastal infrastructure? that would be a massive undertaking... and we could no doubt put ALL of our cheap labor illegal aliens on it...

which would have the added benefit of giving us our jobs back...
 

midcan5

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Don't know where you live but not so many years ago many streams, rivers, and lakes were polluted due to the dumping of toxic chemicals etc. In the same way it seems logical that we can pollute the atmosphere. The question should be a technical, scientific one and not a corporate political football. I personally see nothing wrong with fresh air, clean streams, and healthy forests.
 

Bern80

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I have a couple of honest questions for those who are concerned about man-made global warming and related issues. This is not a trick question. I don’t plan to argue politics with it.

How do you account for the multiple prehistoric ice ages? There was strong global heating and cooling and heating and cooling before man-made technology had an alleged impact on the environment.

How do you account for Mt. Vesuvius and Mt. Saint Helens? I contend that these volcanoes and other geologic events do more to influence the environment than does anything that man does. Did man cause these mountains to erupt?

Again, I do not want to argue for the sake of arguing. I have an open mind and do not have a hard opinion cast in stone. It would probably take very little to influence me one way or another. I looked at “An Inconvenient Truth.” I listen to Rush Limbaugh and Mike Savage.

Comments please.
Well Matts unlike the preivous responders how bout I actually try answering your questions. As a non climate expert you can just take for whatever it's worth I guess.

1) My guess is there simply part of a natural cycle. There isn't much other explanation than that. Or possibly some catastrophic events i.e. an astroid or large scale volcano eruption.

2) I don't know that you account for them realy. But the fact remains that volcano eruptions have spewed far more pollutants into the air than we have so far. They have altered the weather. It has happened several time in human history and life has gone on. Why people contend that our environmental impact has reached god like proportions is beyond me. When nature has shown time and time again that we can't come even close to matching here furry.
 

RetiredGySgt

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Well Matts unlike the preivous responders how bout I actually try answering your questions. As a non climate expert you can just take for whatever it's worth I guess.

1) My guess is there simply part of a natural cycle. There isn't much other explanation than that. Or possibly some catastrophic events i.e. an astroid or large scale volcano eruption.

2) I don't know that you account for them realy. But the fact remains that volcano eruptions have spewed far more pollutants into the air than we have so far. They have altered the weather. It has happened several time in human history and life has gone on. Why people contend that our environmental impact has reached god like proportions is beyond me. When nature has shown time and time again that we can't come even close to matching here furry.
It is simple. One reason is that we MAY be seeing a dangerous change, what is better? To accept that it is nature and we can do little to nothing about it? Or to pretend man is causing it, thus man can fix it?

Another reason is it is scare tactics with little to do with actual science. This is borne out by how anyone that disagrees is treated. last I heard the way Science is SUPPOSED to work is that when someone disagrees with a theory and provides tests and information that support that disagreement, it is reviewed and checked for accuracy and the science community tries to figure out if that is correct. What we have with the theory of man made global warming is blacklisting, character assassination and personal attacks on anyone that disagrees. No one actually reviews the opposing position, rather they try to discredit the person making the claim.

Last I checked Science was NEVER about consensus but rather the procedure, the test the review and a healthy respect for sceptisim, a desire for scientists to challenge accepted theories so as to strength them or show them to be flawed. What we have is political games and personal attacks and a refusal to acknowledge much less review and test the people that disagree with a consensus of a theory that has little science involved in its formation.
 

Kemuri

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How do you account for the multiple prehistoric ice ages? There was strong global heating and cooling and heating and cooling before man-made technology had an alleged impact on the environment.

How do you account for Mt. Vesuvius and Mt. Saint Helens? I contend that these volcanoes and other geologic events do more to influence the environment than does anything that man does. Did man cause these mountains to erupt?
I'm not an expert, but here is my answer anyway.

The ice ages happened for a number of reasons. Periods of intense volcanic activity, a change in the earths axis, etc. The problem is that we have seen warming at an unprecedented rate. That is the main reason that it is thought that current global warming is man made. Another reason is that we were already in a fairly warm period and yet we kept getting warmer which, given our understanding of the earths average temperatures, doesn't fit the way that things go naturally.

Volcanoes do much more in a small amount of time than man does, true. But when you look at history from the industrial revolution on there have been relatively few major eruptions. I would guess that within that time period we, meaning industrialized nations, have put out far more pollutants than volcanoes.

Again, I don't claim to be an expert. Either way which is better, assume that it isn't our fault when it may be and doom ourselves to another ice age, or assume that may be our fault even though it might not be and do what we can to stop it just in case? If we try to stop it and it isn't our fault then ok, but we'll still have cleaner air to breath. If we do nothing and it has nothing to do with us, then ok again. But if it does have to do with us and we don't stop it we may very well be setting ourselves up to have our civilization destroyed.

That's how I see it at least.
 

RetiredGySgt

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I'm not an expert, but here is my answer anyway.

The ice ages happened for a number of reasons. Periods of intense volcanic activity, a change in the earths axis, etc. The problem is that we have seen warming at an unprecedented rate. That is the main reason that it is thought that current global warming is man made. Another reason is that we were already in a fairly warm period and yet we kept getting warmer which, given our understanding of the earths average temperatures, doesn't fit the way that things go naturally.

Volcanoes do much more in a small amount of time than man does, true. But when you look at history from the industrial revolution on there have been relatively few major eruptions. I would guess that within that time period we, meaning industrialized nations, have put out far more pollutants than volcanoes.

Again, I don't claim to be an expert. Either way which is better, assume that it isn't our fault when it may be and doom ourselves to another ice age, or assume that may be our fault even though it might not be and do what we can to stop it just in case? If we try to stop it and it isn't our fault then ok, but we'll still have cleaner air to breath. If we do nothing and it has nothing to do with us, then ok again. But if it does have to do with us and we don't stop it we may very well be setting ourselves up to have our civilization destroyed.

That's how I see it at least.
Your assumimg we are not doing anything to begin with, this is simply NOT true. And check out the radicals, they will give a free pass to all the developing nations and China even though they acknowledge that with in 10 or 15 years those countries will be the biggest pollutors on the planet.
 

TheStripey1

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It is simple. One reason is that we MAY be seeing a dangerous change, what is better? To accept that it is nature and we can do little to nothing about it? Or to pretend man is causing it, thus man can fix it?

Another reason is it is scare tactics with little to do with actual science. This is borne out by how anyone that disagrees is treated. last I heard the way Science is SUPPOSED to work is that when someone disagrees with a theory and provides tests and information that support that disagreement, it is reviewed and checked for accuracy and the science community tries to figure out if that is correct. What we have with the theory of man made global warming is blacklisting, character assassination and personal attacks on anyone that disagrees. No one actually reviews the opposing position, rather they try to discredit the person making the claim.

Last I checked Science was NEVER about consensus but rather the procedure, the test the review and a healthy respect for sceptisim, a desire for scientists to challenge accepted theories so as to strength them or show them to be flawed. What we have is political games and personal attacks and a refusal to acknowledge much less review and test the people that disagree with a consensus of a theory that has little science involved in its formation.
which side are you saying is being blacklisted? those that say that GW/CC is happening or those that say it isn't?

I reiterate... GW/CC doesn't need our permission to be. We need to start thinking about how to deal with the changes that are happening in our environment BEFORE it's too late.

Who cares who is really to blame... not I... let's stop the BSing and get down to some brainstorming about what can be done.
 

RetiredGySgt

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which side are you saying is being blacklisted? those that say that GW/CC is happening or those that say it isn't?

I reiterate... GW/CC doesn't need our permission to be. We need to start thinking about how to deal with the changes that are happening in our environment BEFORE it's too late.

Who cares who is really to blame... not I... let's stop the BSing and get down to some brainstorming about what can be done.
15 years is not enough time for us to know anything is happening that needs any drastic measures to begin with. We do not know if we are causeing the current heating or if it is simply a natural trend. We already ARE doing something about greenhouse gasses and have been for years.

IF the envirowhackos REALLY believe their hype WHY when they managed to get the Kyoto Accord did they allow China and over half the world to be exempt? Why do they continue to ignore all but the West, the very people already working to limit green house gasses?

Science is unable to evaluate if this is totally natural, partial natural and effected some by man, or man made. In fact Science currently is IGNORING evidence it is natural.
 

DeadCanDance

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I have a couple of honest questions for those who are concerned about man-made global warming and related issues. This is not a trick question. I don’t plan to argue politics with it.

How do you account for the multiple prehistoric ice ages? There was strong global heating and cooling and heating and cooling before man-made technology had an alleged impact on the environment.

How do you account for Mt. Vesuvius and Mt. Saint Helens? I contend that these volcanoes and other geologic events do more to influence the environment than does anything that man does. Did man cause these mountains to erupt?

Again, I do not want to argue for the sake of arguing. I have an open mind and do not have a hard opinion cast in stone. It would probably take very little to influence me one way or another. I looked at “An Inconvenient Truth.” I listen to Rush Limbaugh and Mike Savage.

Comments please.

No climate scientist has ever said that earth doesn't have natural climate cycles.

The speed and acceleration of the current warming trend can only be explained by the contribution of human activities. EVERY single major scientific body and organization on the planet agrees. As does virtually all the peer reviewed scientific climate research.


McCain, Bush, Gulliani, and Romney all agree that humans are affecting climate.
 

RetiredGySgt

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No climate scientist has ever said that earth doesn't have natural climate cycles.

The speed and acceleration of the current warming trend can only be explained by the contribution of human activities. EVERY single major scientific body and organization on the planet agrees. As does virtually all the peer reviewed scientific climate research.


McCain, Bush, Gulliani, and Romney all agree that humans are affecting climate.
Consensus and opinion are NOT science. Science DOES NOT KNOPW what is causing the current heating. They have made a guess or two, but can not even support them without first ignoring anyone that shows those "theories" to have major flaws. Rather then work through the scientific process this "consensus" of yours resorts to character assassination and black listing to try and silence legit scientific process that shows potential and actual flaws in the current theories.

Rather than address the science your consensus resorts to making spurious claims that anyone opposed to the consensus is more interested in money or has not the credentials, no one actually address the concerns, the tests and then points being made that call into question the current weak theories.

The simple fact is when it comes to climate we do NOT have very advanced scientific means to do more than guess , using history to speculate on what will happen next year. Computers don't help because a computer is only as good as the information and base lines you give the programs and simulations. 15 years is simply not enough time to establish this as anything along the lines that Global Warming caused by man supporters claim.
 

DeadCanDance

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Consensus and opinion are NOT science. Science DOES NOT KNOPW what is causing the current heating. They have made a guess or two, but can not even support them without first ignoring anyone that shows those "theories" to have major flaws. Rather then work through the scientific process this "consensus" of yours resorts to character assassination and black listing to try and silence legit scientific process that shows potential and actual flaws in the current theories.

Rather than address the science your consensus resorts to making spurious claims that anyone opposed to the consensus is more interested in money or has not the credentials, no one actually address the concerns, the tests and then points being made that call into question the current weak theories.

The simple fact is when it comes to climate we do NOT have very advanced scientific means to do more than guess , using history to speculate on what will happen next year. Computers don't help because a computer is only as good as the information and base lines you give the programs and simulations. 15 years is simply not enough time to establish this as anything along the lines that Global Warming caused by man supporters claim.

No one has ever claimed that science is 100% infallible. Science always deals with uncertainties. Science is not about absolute, infallible truth.

But, we make policy decisons based on sound science, and where scientific consensus is strong.


If eleven out of twelve brain surgeous told you that you had a brain tumour, you would take some sort of action.

Likewise, the overwhelming scientific consensus is that humans are affecting climate. Every major scientific body and organization on the planet agrees. Even all the top tier republican candidates for prez agree.
 

Toro

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Global warming isn't necessarily a bad thing.

After all, you don't have droves of people moving from Florida to North Dakota.
 

ScreamingEagle

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Why is it the pro-global warmers continue to ignore pertinent scientific questions such as:

1. Why has co2 has in the past been a lagging factor, not a causal factor in global warming?
2. How the heck did the Roman Warming or the Medieval Warming happen without any man-made emissions? (matts original question)

Sound science indicates that our emissions are not causing global warming.
Nature could be just doing her own thing as usual.
Nobody has proven or is able to prove otherwise.
Even Al Bore.
 

Vintij

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I have a couple of honest questions for those who are concerned about man-made global warming and related issues. This is not a trick question. I don’t plan to argue politics with it.

How do you account for the multiple prehistoric ice ages? There was strong global heating and cooling and heating and cooling before man-made technology had an alleged impact on the environment.

How do you account for Mt. Vesuvius and Mt. Saint Helens? I contend that these volcanoes and other geologic events do more to influence the environment than does anything that man does. Did man cause these mountains to erupt?

Again, I do not want to argue for the sake of arguing. I have an open mind and do not have a hard opinion cast in stone. It would probably take very little to influence me one way or another. I looked at “An Inconvenient Truth.” I listen to Rush Limbaugh and Mike Savage.

Comments please.
Since no-one else has answerd your questions correctly, I will.

Science is with you on your first question. Climate change is nothing new, It has been going on since the birth of our sun. Nobody in the science community will dissagree with you on that. So to answer your question, we can account for different events in the past that occured naturally. For instance, asteroids. If you think about it, thousands of very LARGE asteroids have hit our earth before man was even roaming around. As you know, asteroids can cause climate change in so many different ways. Another thing you are overlooking, is something called "super volcanos". Ofcourse supervolcanos do not exist as we know it right now because none have erupted during human life, (if one did, we would all die) But there is alot of evidence in the past about super-vocanos erupting, 10 times larger than Mnt. Snt hellens. This is another factor that you can cause climate change, different from normal vocanic eruptions because of the amount of ash released into the air. If a supervocano is able to release ash that coverd the earth. Well climate cooling would result, as well as plant adaptation to less sunlight.

Question number 2. No those events do not do much to effect climate change for a couple of reason. As I said before these eruptions are rather small compared to super volcanos, and althought they do release vast amounts of C02 into the atmosphere, the ash released into the air, actually blocks infrared sun rays. Which in turn does not allow the Co2 to trap heat between the atmosphere and the earth. Infact it allows plants to respirate longer, allowing them to consume more co2 than normal because of the less sunlight (plants are in respiration mode at night).

An inconvienent truth is basically a mainstream way of hyping up climate change. The truth is....we dont know enough about anthropogenic climate change to actually conclude anything.

The reason there is such a scare, and why you asked these questions is because, unlike past events of climate change.....this recent spike in tempurature can not be explained by natural events. It has been getting hotter, faster than ever before. Again this could be just natural climate change....but in the past when the ice age came or when global warming would heat up the earth, it happend very very slowly. Even as recent as 20 years ago, the climate was going through changes that eventually stabilized.

So now you know, why its such a big deal to everyone. Ofcourse I personally believe we are going to need more information on it, and if the temperature keeps rising this fast in 5-10 years, Then it will be a real concern. As of now, it could be natural for all we know. So I hate to say it but, retired sargent is right in some ways. Anthropogenic global warming is not proven yet, but eventually we can find out more about it when technology is able to get us there.
 

ScreamingEagle

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The Great Global Warming Swindle
March 19, 2007
S. Fred Singer

Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth has met its match: a devastating documentary recently shown on British television, which has now been viewed by millions of people on the Internet. Despite its flamboyant title, The Great Global Warming Swindle is based on sound science and interviews with real climate scientists, including me. An Inconvenient Truth, on the other hand, is mostly an emotional presentation from a single politician.

The scientific arguments presented in The Great Global Warming Swindle can be stated quite briefly:

1. There is no proof that the current warming is caused by the rise of greenhouse gases from human activity. Ice core records from the past 650,000 years show that temperature increases have preceded—not resulted from—increases in CO2 by hundreds of years, suggesting that the warming of the oceans is an important source of the rise in atmospheric CO2. As the dominant greenhouse gas, water vapor is far, far more important than CO2. Dire predictions of future warming are based almost entirely on computer climate models, yet these models do not accurately understand the role or water vapor—and, in any case, water vapor is not within our control. Plus, computer models cannot account for the observed cooling of much of the past century (1940–75), nor for the observed patterns of warming—what we call the “fingerprints.” For example, the Antarctic is cooling while models predict warming. And where the models call for the middle atmosphere to warm faster than the surface, the observations show the exact opposite.

The best evidence supporting natural causes of temperature fluctuations are the changes in cloudiness, which correspond strongly with regular variations in solar activity. The current warming is likely part of a natural cycle of climate warming and cooling that’s been traced back almost a million years. It accounts for the Medieval Warm Period around 1100 A.D., when the Vikings settled Greenland and grew crops, and the Little Ice Age, from about 1400 to 1850 A.D., which brought severe winters and cold summers to Europe, with failed harvests, starvation, disease, and general misery. Attempts have been made to claim that the current warming is “unusual” using spurious analysis of tree rings and other proxy data. Advocates have tried to deny the existence of these historic climate swings and claim that the current warming is "unusual" by using spurious analysis of tree rings and other proxy data, resulting in the famous “hockey–stick” temperature graph. The hockey-stick graph has now been thoroughly discredited.

2. If the cause of warming is mostly natural, then there is little we can do about it. We cannot control the inconstant sun, the likely origin of most climate variability. None of the schemes for greenhouse gas reduction currently bandied about will do any good; they are all irrelevant, useless, and wildly expensive:

Control of CO2 emissions, whether by rationing or elaborate cap–and–trade schemes
Uneconomic “alternative” energy, such as ethanol and the impractical “hydrogen economy”
Massive installations of wind turbines and solar collectors
Proposed projects for the sequestration of CO2 from smokestacks or even from the atmosphere
Ironically, even if CO2 were responsible for the observed warming trend, all these schemes would be ineffective—unless we could persuade every nation, including China, to cut fuel use by 80 percent!

3. Finally, no one can show that a warmer climate would produce negative impacts overall. The much–feared rise in sea levels does not seem to depend on short–term temperature changes, as the rate of sea–level increases has been steady since the last ice age, 10,000 years ago. In fact, many economists argue that the opposite is more likely—that warming produces a net benefit, that it increases incomes and standards of living. Why do we assume that the present climate is the optimum? Surely, the chance of this must be vanishingly small, and the economic history of past climate warmings bear this out.

But the main message of The Great Global Warming Swindle is much broader. Why should we devote our scarce resources to what is essentially a non–problem, and ignore the real problems the world faces: hunger, disease, denial of human rights—not to mention the threats of terrorism and nuclear wars? And are we really prepared to deal with natural disasters; pandemics that can wipe out most of the human race, or even the impact of an asteroid, such as the one that wiped out the dinosaurs? Yet politicians and the elites throughout much of the world prefer to squander our limited resources to fashionable issues, rather than concentrate on real problems. Just consider the scary predictions emanating from supposedly responsible world figures: the chief scientist of Great Britain tells us that unless we insulate our houses and use more efficient light bulbs, the Antarctic will be the only habitable continent by 2100, with a few surviving breeding couples propagating the human race. Seriously!

I imagine that in the not–too–distant future all the hype will have died down, particularly if the climate should decide to cool—as it did during much of the past century; we should take note here that it has not warmed since 1998. Future generations will look back on the current madness and wonder what it was all about. They will have movies like An Inconvenient Truth and documentaries like The Great Global Warming Swindle to remind them.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
S. Fred Singer, an atmospheric physicist, is Research Fellow at the Independent Institute, Professor Emeritus of Environmental Sciences at the University of Virginia, and former founding Director of the U.S. Weather Satellite Service. He is author of Hot Talk, Cold Science: Global Warming’s Unfinished Debate (The Independent Institute, 1997).

http://www.independent.org/newsroom/article.asp?id=1945
 

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