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Comments 701 to 750:

  1. Arctic sea ice has recovered

    Note that BeesKnees said "arctic ice volume", not sea ice volume. Scaddenp has illustrated how BeesKnees statement about the past 15 years is not true with respect to sea ice.

    Someone may be tempted to say "what about Greenland?" You can use the search tool (top left) to find SkS articles on "Greenland Ice". BeesKnees statement is also not true for Greenland ice.

    The next stop on the denial train would be to shift the goalposts to snow cover. You can search for northern hemisphere snow, too. Turns out that it also is decreasing.

  2. Trump should inspire us all, but not in the way you might guess

    Not wanting to take this too far down the path of politics, but in my view the election of Trump was the result of years (if not decades) of building anger in America. A lot of people have been angry that society has not brought them to the promised land (be it religious or economic).

    They are angry at the "elites" (whoever they are thought to be), the system, the government, etc., and this anger has been encouraged by outlets such as Fox News, parts of the print media, the Internet, etc.

    Angry with the establishment, both Democrat and Republican voters flirtedwith rogue candiates that were seen to challenge the system. Hillary managed to beat Bernie Sanders, but the Republican core lost to Trump. And in the election, the angry voters rallied behind Trump.

    I have relatives on my wife's side that live in the U.S. that cannot see there way to vote Democrat due to keystone issues such as abortion. In the last election, they held their noses and voted for Trump, and really just don't like talking about it. For at least some, I think they are embarrassed by him.

    Trump sends a message than many want to hear. It does not matter if it is lies. It's the opiate of the masses.

  3. Trump should inspire us all, but not in the way you might guess

    One Planet Only Forever @6: I tend to agree with you.

    Romm's book - which I haven't read, just going by the article above - might be all well and good when one is referencing a debate with opinions on each side.

    But the climate "debate" is an entirely different animal: the deniers' "side" is 90% opinion (perhaps 10% regurgitated fake or wrong science) and the "side" of the scientists is - or should be - fact and data driven.

    So n'er the twain shall meet.

    We, the general untutored-in-climatology-and-the-relevant-disciplines public accept all sorts of science in our daily lives without blinking. We climb onto a 400 tonne aircraft with 400 other souls accepting that it was designed on computers and tested mainly on models before real life test flying. The science is taken for granted. Yet for probably deep seated psychological reasons the same acceptance of the relevan science is not there with climatology.

    Romm's method will backfire, I suspect: the subject is far too complex to promote in a semi-conversational way.

  4. What happened last time it was as warm as it’s going to get later this century?

    While many metres of sea level rise over millenia is very concerning, its rapid sea level rise that should be concerning us most. We are loading the dice to triggering this, due to the rapidity of emissions and the consequent rapid warming trend.

    Consider that Meltwater pulse 1a was more recent than the miocene, but lead to about 4 metres of sea level rise per century, ongoing for several centuries, and was consistent with 5 degrees of warming. About 2 metres of this has been related to destabilisation of the antractic, and we are currently seeing signs that the antarctic is destabilising. If this was to spread to the eastern antarctic this century, imho it could lead to 2 metres of sea level rise this century as a very distinct possibility. Our rapid CO2 emissions are making this a real possibility.

    J Hansen has raised the possibilty that sea level rise could be rapid, and even up to 5 metres per century. His scenario b temperature predictions have been vindicated by reality, so we better pay attention to his sea level rise views.

    Regarding the issue of the miocene being wetter and greener and climate models not predicting this. According to this article, large parts of the world were actually pretty arid during the miocene, with only some parts of the world wetter. The reasons for the aridity relates to mountain building and continental drift. I'm not sure why this account differs from the article, others may know? So climate models may not be so far off.

    In any event climate models would probably struggle to incorporate such complex geological changes, and this would explain any discrepancy if one exists.

  5. What President Trump means for the future of energy and climate

    Would go a long way to AE costs to cut the FF handouts or even invest them in the right direction. When externalities are included, as in a 2015 study by the International Monetary Fund, the unpaid costs of fossil fuels are upward of $5.3 trillion annually – which works out to a staggering $10 million per minute.

    Oil Change International’s most recent reporting looks at money for fossil fuel production only (including exploration, and extraction, and development) in the G20 governments – which includes many of the world’s most developed countries. These governments are providing support to oil, gas, and coal companies to the tune of $444 billion per year, between direct national subsidies, domestic and international finance, and state-owned enterprise investment.

  6. Arctic sea ice has recovered

    BeesKnees - I dont where you are getting your "elsewhere" information on arctic ice volume, but I would suggest that it is either extremely unreliable or you have misinterpreted.

    Here is the arctic ice volume from PIOMAS.

    Source: Polar Science Center

    It is higher than 2016, 2017, 2012, but weather causes year to year variability. The trend in ice volume is pretty clear in picture:

    Well below 2003 level.

  7. Breathing contributes to CO2 buildup

    As this is your first post, Skeptical Science respectfully reminds you to please follow our comments policy. Thank You! Since  breathing is nessasary to sustaining our life seems like a moot point for discussion. Unless you are proposing extermination on a significant part of the population.  The 34.7 Billion tons from fossil fuel combustion a year however IS something we can change. Old figure 2009.

  8. Trump should inspire us all, but not in the way you might guess

    Johnboy @13,  I hear you, but I dont think theres a magic answer to this.

    Clearly any president is going to get more exposure than scientists, its the way of the world. Scientists have to grab every opportunity possible and make it count by speaking clearly etc. And many do this rather well,  and they are the ones to learn from.

    Like DM pointed out science and technical people  are backroom people and not always well trained in public speaking. I work in a technical field, and used to dread public speaking, almost a phobia, but because I deal with so many people I had to learn the arts. Even just an hour reading a good book on communications skills, or some time with a public relations expert can be transformational. It's really important because we absolutely have to convince people.

    Having said that, there are many fine well written books and websites on climate science that are suitable for the general public. Its always possible to do better, but again theres no magic bullet. Talking about watts / m2 is complicated, talking about atomic bombs is emotive and would totally alienate the Republican side of the debate.

    The book "An Inconvenient Truth" was well written, if a little light on the "denialist" side of the issue. It's hard for me to see how it could be "significantly" better written, and kept at a sensible size. Unfortunately Al Gore was a politician, and this probably coloured perceptions of the book.

    Let me try to bring this together. We  can all learn to communicate better, and this is really important,  but at the end of the day there are limits to what communication can do. Scientists have spelt out the science pretty well, and cannot be blamed for the ignorance of many in the public and their desire not to listen, and their preference for conspiracy theory ideation, and their inability to recognise red herring arguments and cherry picking. Scientists cannot be blamed for the  denialist campaign, and some of its people have no shame!

  9. Arctic sea ice has recovered

    I've seen a few mentions elsewhere that arctic ice volume is at near record highs for last 15 years.  

    Does anyone know what has triggered the change from being well below 2004-2013 average in May to now being well above average?

    I'm a complete amateur so I was making guesses of cloud cover (I beleive there was an unusual weather system in may) or volcanic activity (Kilauea, vanuatu or fuego eruptions) but it would be nice to have a clearer idea of what is happening.

  10. Trump should inspire us all, but not in the way you might guess

    Daniel Mocnsy @11, I agree entirely. I would add that Hilary Clintons 'baggage' comprised a set of false accusations, and she was cleared of wrong doing by the courts and various investigations. Unfortunately mud sticks, and it I think it made her the wrong choice to be a candidate. This is the hard reality.

    The email issue clearly cost her votes.  That was my point about baggage, and perhaps I should have explained it more.

    Imho she is largely a sensible moderate, although not a terribly great candidate either. 

    The important thing is not to jump to the conclusion that Trump's "oratory" won him the election. It was more about Hilarys baggage and Trumps ability to use immigration as a scare tactic etc.

    While its very important to talk in a concise way and get peoples attention, imho insults, bullying, misleading and inaccurate information will not work as tactics for either the Democrats or scientists. It will all become a shouting match and would backfire on them.

    Having said that, scientists do sometimes get lost in detail and nuance and sometimes take ages to get to the point. Theres a sensible middle ground! J Hansen is a very good communicator in terms of style.

  11. Trump should inspire us all, but not in the way you might guess

    But how to get information out, as in @ villabolo #1 and @sauerj #8, in front of the general public as easily as Trump can ( obviously, never will be quite that easy). The "war" being waged between science and denialism mostly out of sight of the average American. 

    Really liked those two posts. Had a thought that maybe a little more background about "natural" CO2 levels (in atom bombs, maybe(?)) that not only allows life as we know at to exist on earth at all, but the relatively stable levels since the last ice age that has allowed human civilization to thrive over the last 10,000 years. Human populations going from 1M to 1B by the beginning of the Industrial Revolution, due to the introduction of farming. There has been a price to pay for that. Now it's gone from there to 7B in 200 years.

    The denialist constantly claim climate change is "natural" and is always happening. Sure, over a range, but we're talking about radical changes driven by extreme events such as volcanic eruptions, asteroid strikes, ice ages (glaciation) driven by significant solar events. And now burning fossil fuels is taking us out of that "natural" range.

    i'm sharing the two posts with my denialist friends. Probably won't do much good. 

  12. Daniel Mocsny at 02:13 AM on 29 June 2018
    Trump should inspire us all, but not in the way you might guess

    It's useful to distinguish between having an inner game and an outer game. In science, the inner game is what scientists learned to do in school: read science journals, design experiments, collect data, construct theories, test theories, write and publish results, and share information with a "friendly" audience of fellow scientists. (Yes, scientists can sometimes be contentious, even bitter rivals, but they are friendly compared to anti-scientists who reject the scientific method and norms for truth. Scientists for the most part can be persuaded by evidence. Talking to people who do that is very different from talking to people who won't.)

    The outer game is conveying science to the non-scientific (and often anti-scientific) masses. Wherever science collides and conflicts with pre-existing ideas, beliefs, behaviors, or economic interests, the outer game must necessarily include persuasion. Climate change has an especially tough challenge, because virtually every person on the planet is either fully dedicated to a climate-raping lifestyle, or (if poor) aspires to become rich enough to have one.

    It goes pretty much without saying that scientific training almost wholly neglects the outer game. So here we are as a species, careening along with our fossil fuel global suicide pact. Interestingly, the Fermi paradox suggests that no other technological species in the history of our own galaxy, or possibly even in the entire observable universe, managed to solve the tragedy of the commons in time to avoid wiping itself out before becoming a spacefaring species.

  13. Daniel Mocsny at 01:56 AM on 29 June 2018
    Trump should inspire us all, but not in the way you might guess

    3. nigelj at 08:14 AM on 28 June, 2018:

    [Trump] won because Hilary had so much baggage from her past.

    A very large fraction of which consisted of lies promoted relentlessly by a cottage industry of right-wing authors and pundits who spent decades smearing the Clintons. It's not so much that Hillary has "baggage" but that much of the public has been duped into believing she does. The Clinton-smearing cottage industry has proved once again that if you repeat a lie enough times, it sticks.

    A number of factors helped Trump win the Electoral College (he lost the popular vote by almost 3 million, remember - due to America's continuing rapid population growth, Hillary actually won more votes than any Presidential candidate in history). One of the most critical factors was Trump's theocratic appeal to America's white Evangelical Christians, who have long been a reliable voting bloc for Republican Presidential candidates. An even higher percentage (81%, I read) voted for Trump than for any other recent Republican candidate. These are people who believe, for the most part, in the literal truth of Noah's Ark. They are horrified by things such as abortion, gay marriage, and the teaching of evolution in schools (not that it's taught much in the USA, thanks to their efforts). Trump promised to stack the Supreme Court with theocrats, so Evangelicals showed their true colors by voting for Trump despite his vulgar boasts about sexually assaulting women.

  14. Trump should inspire us all, but not in the way you might guess

    @ sauerj #8

    "When I put the thermal imbalance in units of hiro atom bombs per hour, and then, more so, compared that to how much energy all of man hourly consumes (also in the same units), this had a profound visceral impact on me (I am a chemical engineer)."

    Unfortunately, the Hiroshima bomb metaphor is likely to turn off many readers since it gives the impression that AGW is setting of powerful explosions throughout the world. Since the warmest day does not translate into a searing thermal pulse of a nuke the typical reader will imagine.

    I'm hard-pressed to figure out a metaphor that the average person can understand but using an incredulous (No matter how technically correct) metaphor is likely to be a turn-off. 

  15. Trump should inspire us all, but not in the way you might guess

    Thanks for the reading recommendation. Yes, credit where credit's due, our president moved slipstream into cultural rhythms long alive in the US and in need of a voice. On the topic of influencing a mediated culture, I'd strongly recommend Jonathan Haight's book, The Righteous Mind. For those of us who have the skills to shape meaningful acceptance of climate science's conclusions, Haight points to where the levers are. Trump (and Bannon) certainly did their homework - and won.

  16. Trump should inspire us all, but not in the way you might guess

    I believe thermal imbalance of global warming is poorly explained in units of watts/m2. I think these units are in a foreign language to the average non-technical person (even to the semi-technical person). When I put the thermal imbalance in units of hiro atom bombs per hour, and then, more so, compared that to how much energy all of man hourly consumes (also in the same units), this had a profound visceral impact on me (I am a chemical engineer).
    I have used this type of language in this following linked document: 

  17. Trump should inspire us all, but not in the way you might guess

    Yes I also seriously question excessively emotive appeals, or anything that tries to be too clever or manipulative, or any form of spin or exaggeration or dishonesty. We expect this from politicians, but not scientists. It wont work, and I think it would backfire on scientists and reduce their credibility.

    But obviously dont be totally boring, pedantic and dry. Strike a balance. Be human. There are excellent books on public speaking.

    What happened to ethics in our considerations? Could be a good opening line. And indeed, what has happened to ethics? Where the hell has it gone?

  18. One Planet Only Forever at 14:07 PM on 28 June 2018
    Trump should inspire us all, but not in the way you might guess

    I agree that you need to be sure you have the attention of someone. But I question the ability of emotional appeals to change the minds of people who have developed a dislike for climate science because of the changes/corrections of what has developed that it indicates are required.

    A major barrier to getting the attention of many people is that people have brains evolved to develop a non-human (instinctive animal type) quick response that gets applied to everything before they do the Human thing and "Think about something" (understanding I got from many sources including Guy P Harrison's "Think" and "Good Thinking", Susan Cain's "Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World that Can't Stop Talking", and Sean Carroll's "The Big Picture"). And that quick response is governed by their instinctive and developed interests and desires. It can keep them from thinking helpfully about an issue, keeping them from becoming more aware and better understanding, stopping their mind from being drawn into attempts to improve awareness and understanding.

    Socioeconomic systems that develop based on the easy to appeal to selfish desire for the 'freedom to believe whatever you want and do as you please' (with the responsibility to be aware and understanding how to be helpful rather than harmful conveniently disconnected from the desire) in 'popularity and profitability competitions to perceive yourself to be the winner relative to others' create a large number of people with developed personal interests that are contrary to 'helping to develop sustainable improvements for the future of humanity - preferring a better present for themselves any way they can get away with'.

    Unless those people shift their attitude from selfishness to altruism they will never care to be more aware or better understand an issue like climate change.

    I am trying to figure out ways to attempt to start a conversation based on focusing on any 'helpful to humanity' desire that a climate science denier (someone quick-triggered against becoming more aware and better understanding of climate science) may have. I think that using the 2015 Sustainable Development Goals provides an effective means to link the requirements for climate action to almost any other altruistic interest (but it is a UN document which is an immediate Red-Flag to many of those quick-triggered deniers).

    An emotion triggering Headline, or snappy emotionally appealing message, about climate science can be expected to be quickly dismissed by a person that has developed desires and understands how the required climate action corrections are contrary to personal interest in benefiting less ethically, less helpfully, more harmfully for as long as they can get away with.

    I wonder if "Helpful Thinking" can be triggered by attempting to resurrect the importance of Ethics (Ethics has taken a beating in the competitions for popularity and profitability). Ethical behaviour undeniably needs to over-rule popularity and profitability. And Ethical behaviour needs to be more valuable than 'Legal behaviour'. Legal actions (creating, correcting and enforcement of laws) need to be governed by the ethical good objectives of helping to sustainably improve the future of humanity.

    Without that good ethical guiding objecting over-ruling everything, less ethical behaviour is likely to continue to win, to the detriment of the future of humanity.

  19. Trump should inspire us all, but not in the way you might guess

    Nigelj #4,

    Thank you. I hope the rest is as good.

  20. Trump should inspire us all, but not in the way you might guess

    Nice intro. on your website Vilabolo.

  21. Trump should inspire us all, but not in the way you might guess

    Trump is a completely 100% useless president, and mainly won because Hilary had so much baggage from her past. So I wouldnt copy his style of oratory too much. The only useful takeaways are his confidence and simplicity of messaging.

    However science discussions are often long discussions by nature. The main thing is get a brief, simple summary at the beginning of long discussions, and make it a little bit provocative and attention grabbing.

    Humour helps in the middle of lengthy discussions.

  22. michael sweet at 07:11 AM on 28 June 2018
    Explainer: How scientists estimate ‘climate sensitivity’

    Current temperatures are at least 1C higher than historical temperatures in 1800. We are a little over 400 ppm from a baseline near 270 ppm.  How is it possible for instrumental estimates of climate sensitivity to be less than 1C? We are already higher than 1C and have not doubled CO2 yet.

    If they are counting other greenhouse gasses they also have to count aerosols.  We are not at equilibrium yet, estimates of heating in the pipeline are near 0.5C.  Or is it just because they did their analysis just before the "pause" ended?

  23. Trump should inspire us all, but not in the way you might guess

    This is a plea for help.

    Does anybody know of a serious study that compares Aryan Physics (Arische Physik, Deutsche Physik, et alia) with Modern Republican Climatology?

    I do apologize for leaving an off-topic note; I do not know where/how to properly submit the question. Thanks for the patience!

  24. Explainer: How scientists estimate ‘climate sensitivity’

    By definition, the temperature rise expected for a rise from 200ppm to 400ppm is the same as from 400ppm to 800ppm, this could lull climate diniers into a false sense of security as each successive equal rise in Carbon dioxide has less effect than the previous rise.  Climate sensitivity doesn't take into account tipping points which are likely to throw this very nice curve completely out of kilter.  I wonder if the trippling of ice loss in th Antarctic recently reported is the signal of one of these tipping points.

  25. Trump should inspire us all, but not in the way you might guess

    I'm glad this topic came up. I have a website - - that I could use some feedback on. I've tried to make the topics as simple and short as possible. I'll be open to any constructive criticism.

  26. Explainer: How scientists estimate ‘climate sensitivity’

    Zeke, thank you. Lucid overview of an issue that cuts to the heart of model accuracy. As you likely are aware, the current science driven policy position against more aggressive action on CO2 abatement relies heavily on model uncertainty. I think of your central points is that, amidst the uncertainty of how future feedback may (or may not) amplify ECS, the 'mean' of the models places net warming above 2 degrees C. 

  27. 30 years later, deniers are still lying about Hansen’s amazing global warming prediction

    Oortcloud, since 1980 arctic amplification has been attributed mainly to burning fossil fuels causing warming and a reinforcing feedback from melting ice. Changes in global circulation as such (hadley cells, ocean processes) are not major factors, as explained in this article.

  28. michael sweet at 06:19 AM on 27 June 2018
    30 years later, deniers are still lying about Hansen’s amazing global warming prediction


    The graph starts at 1988 not 1998.  Temperatures have not returned to the "pause level", 2017 was the second hottest year on record.  Only 5C warming separates Chicago from having 1 km of ice on top of it, 1C in 30 years seems like a lot to me.  Natural variability, including the "LIA" and "RMP" is only 0.2C.  

    Perhaps your comments would make sense if you read the OP before you comment.

  29. 30 years later, deniers are still lying about Hansen’s amazing global warming prediction

    Patrick Michaels is not the only one presenting false information. Here ( is the NOAA ENSO record. YThe author cherry-picked his start date so as to eliminate the 1998 El Nino event. Since 1999 there has been 0ne lengthy La Nina immediately following the 1998 El Nino event. All 5 of the others have been short and weak. What the author has failed to mention is that the period he chose is the period of the pause in warming. The 2015 El Nino upped temperatures tremendously, but the latest La Nina and current neutral period has dropped temps down to pause level again.

    Hansen made no "prediction" about the warming rate in arctic. "Arctic amplification" is a known effect of the Hadley circulation and had been known well before Hansen's testimony.

    We have not seen "dramatic" warming as the author puts it. Warming has been less than 1C and is well within natural variability as shown by paleo reconstruction of the LIA and RWP.

    Moderator Response:

    [DB]  "Warming has been less than 1C and is well within natural variability as shown by paleo reconstruction of the LIA and RWP."

    That's actually not the case, once the full context of the paleo record is used:

    Last 22,000 years

    Please note that this venue is based on credible evidence for claims and the usage of good principles of the scientific method.  This puts the onus on the person making assertions running counter to accepted science (you, in this instance) to be able to provide citations to credible sources to back up your claims.  Further, threads at Skeptical Science hew closely to the topic found in the OP of each thread.  If what you wish to discuss does not match that topic, use the Search function found in the UL corner of every page here to find a more suitable thread.  Thousands exist.

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  30. One Planet Only Forever at 01:01 AM on 27 June 2018
    30 years later, deniers are still lying about Hansen’s amazing global warming prediction


    I like that quote highlighting the unjustified popularity of claims made in stories like Atlas Shrugged.

    Real world evidence of Bad thinkers who are fans of Ayn Rand and Milton Friedman beliefs in the 'magic of people being freer to believe what they want and do as they please' is Alan Greenspan's statement/excuse for his lack of effort to prevent the actions that developed the 2008 financial crisis. He essentially declared that he was unaware that any executive or board member of a financial institution would put short-term self-interest ahead of the objective of sustainably developing a better future.

    The other real world examples of that Bad Thinking by Winners is the type of people that have been 'invited' by Congress to talk to Congress about Climate Science (and the type of people who do that type of Bad Inviting usually have a history of a diversity of Bad Thinking based actions - acting in opposition to the achievement of many of the Sustainable Development Goals, not just the climate change goals).

  31. 30 years later, deniers are still lying about Hansen’s amazing global warming prediction

    The Koch Brothers fund the best junk science money can buy. I think their motives are greed, but perhaps that word is too blunt. Regarding their "libertarianism", there is a famous quote I came across:

    "There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old's life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs."

    Attributed to the writer John Rogers.

  32. One Planet Only Forever at 14:42 PM on 26 June 2018
    30 years later, deniers are still lying about Hansen’s amazing global warming prediction

    I do not think the concluding statements are the most accurate presentation of what is going on, but they may be the more politically correct thing to say (quoted below).

    "Michaels and Maue want us to bet the future of all life on Earth. They want us to put all our chips on black – a bet that burning billions of barrels of oil and billions of tons of coal every year won’t cause dangerous climate change. They want us to make that bet even though their arguments are based on unsupported lies, whilst they cash paychecks from the Koch brothers.

    We would have to be incredible suckers to take their bet."

    It is more likely that Michaels and Maue expect a lot of people to be easily tempted to like their claim because it excuses their pursuit of a better present for themselves at the expense of others, especially at the expense of future generations (including the future challenges like extinctions and other environmental impacts, such as water contamination, due to the impacts of fossil fuel extraction, processing, transportation and burning).

    It is very likely that deliberate misleading marketing is developed and presented by the likes of Micheals and Maue because they understand that competitions for popularity and profitability have been repeatedly proven to be won, at least temporarily (all that matters to a selfish person), by abusing the temptation to like misleading marketing.

    And being tempted to like getting away with more personal benefit at the expense of others is not being a sucker - it is far worse that that and should be called what it is (remember that future generations are Others - they do not benefit just because the current generation benefits. Yet may economic evaluations pretend that the people benefiting today are the ones suffering challenges and consequences in the future). Something like the following is more accurate:
    "What Michaels and Maue have done is the expected result of Despicably Deliberately Unethical Bad Thinking by the likes of the Koch Brothers - which is mostly, if not totally, legal because Bad Laws have been created by undeserving Winners and Bad Law Enforcement has happened for the benefit of those Winners - with popular support obtained from lazy/bad thinking people (easily tempted to be greedy - without caring about potential negative consequences to others) by Opinion Pieces that are allowed to be presented without the correction/clarification of the misstatements made presented to everyone who reads the Opinion piece 'Before they read the Opinion Piece'".

    What Michaels and Maue have presented is not 'An Opinion', it is a piece of false advertising paid for by the Koch Brothers.

    However, the lazy/bad thinkers will not be tempted to change their mind by having the unacceptability of their beliefs exposed too clearly. They would likely react by entering the flight or fight mode - most likely the fight mode - rather than start to seriously properly think about understanding things. Mind you, getting them thinking may not change their mind because when a person senses that better understanding an issue will not be to their personal advantage they will also often enter fight mode to protect their developed desired interests.

    That is why I suggest that the solution requires the wealthiest and most powerful to be held to standards of ethics and 'helpfulness to the future of humanity' (achieving and improving the Sustainable Development Goals) that are 'Above the Law - to a higher standard of ethical helpful behaviour than is required by law'.

    The games of popularity and profitability that developed the damaging unsustainable activity have also developed a powerful resistance to being corrected (Bad Selfish Thinking Winning resulting in Bad Laws and Bad Law Enforcement).

    It comes back to one of my favourite quotes of John Stuart Mill in "On Liberty" - "“If society lets a considerable number of its members grow up mere children, incapable of being acted on by rational consideration of distant motives, society has itself to blame for the consequences.”

    And that quote ties into a quote from the 1987 UN Report "Our Common Future" with distant motives being understood to be consideration of others especially of future generations (altruistic).

    "25. Many present efforts to guard and maintain human progress, to meet human needs, and to realize human ambitions are simply unsustainable - in both the rich and poor nations. They draw too heavily, too quickly, on already overdrawn environmental resource accounts to be affordable far into the future without bankrupting those accounts. They may show profit on the balance sheets of our generation, but our children will inherit the losses. We borrow environmental capital from future generations with no intention or prospect of repaying. They may damn us for our spendthrift ways, but they can never collect on our debt to them. We act as we do because we can get away with it: future generations do not vote; they have no political or financial power; they cannot challenge our decisions.
    26. But the results of the present profligacy are rapidly closing the options for future generations. Most of today's decision makers will be dead before the planet feels; the heavier effects of acid precipitation, global warming, ozone depletion, or widespread desertification and species loss. Most of the young voters of today will still be alive. In the Commission's hearings it was the young, those who have the most to lose, who were the harshest critics of the planet's present management."

    Unless global humanity can effectively hold the winners (anywhere and everywhere) to the highest standard of ethics and helpfulness, the future of humanity suffers the consequences.

    I appreciate that brevity is more powerful. At the moment the closest I can get to a concise statement of what is required is "Think about the Global Future - Be as aware and understanding as possible - Act Locally Now to help develop a sustainable better future". That statement applies to all of the Sustainable Development Goals, with action on climate change being one of the most significant goals. But that statement is too wordy to be a winner, and even that over-long statement does not expose the requirement to correct what has already developed popularity and profitability, and the need to change the system so that it produces sustainable good results rather than a string of results of 'Bad Thinking temporarily winning regional popularity for unjustified actions through misleading marketing appeals to greed and intolerance'.

  33. 30 years later, deniers are still lying about Hansen’s amazing global warming prediction

    I will make the same comment here that did over at AndThenTheresPhysics:


    …discounting the larger-than-usual El Niño of 2015-16”

    That is a specific case of the “discounting all the evidence that doesn’t fit our narrative” argument. Of course, they also “discount the effect the 1998 El Nino had on temperatures”. Don’t like what you see? Apply a discount!

    Discounting the money they want, my local car dealer is giving away cars for free!

  34. 30 years later, deniers are still lying about Hansen’s amazing global warming prediction

    Michaels is using a straw man comparison, because scenario A emissions were always at the outer extreme, and emissions have been lower in reality and close to scenario B, possibly due to the 2008 gfc? Scenario B is what Hansen should be judged against.

    Also If Michael's thinks the "unusually intense" 2015 el nino should be ignored presumably he is happy to ignore the "unusually intense" 1998 el nino and the "global cooling since 1998 myth?".

  35. Wally Broeker: Father of “Global Warming”, in a Warning to his Granddaughter


    There is well proven technology to remove large enough quantities of bulk CO2 to be significant. It is organic agricultural technology and there are many multiple examples depending on which crop we are discussing. Not only is this technology cheap enough to afford at scale, it actually would yield a net profit over conventional agriculture.

    I discuss it in detail here:

    Can we reverse global warming?

    You are not clear where the carbon would be stored? Lets be clear. There is more carbon missing from our agricultural soils worldwide than extra in the atmosphere since the beginning of the industrial error. We have more than enough room to store this carbon in the soil.

    As for costs? Higher SOC leads to higher yields and profitability for farmers. There is no cost to pay, only increased net profits to receive.

    So it is clearly big enough. But is it fast enough? Just because the soil sink is by far large enough and couldn't possibly ever get saturated worldwide before running out of CO2 excess, that doesn't mean it would necessarily sequester the carbon at a fast enough rate.

    Back of the envelope calculations for the rate at which we reach "break even" vs current emissions rates gives us 8 tonnes CO2e/ha/yr as the break even average if these new carbon farming methods were applied to all arable land worldwide. Real world at scale measured 10 yr case studies of working farms measured 5-20 tonnes CO2e/ha/yr increases in SOC. 8 tonnes CO2e/ha/yr is squarely in the range of 5-20 tonnes CO2e/ha/yr. So it is possible.

    This means we have a working model that can ideed fix this problem. Now as far as your exhortation to immediately install renewable energy systems. I actually agree with that 100%.

    Just because the soil sink is large enough and the rate of sequestration fast enough, doesn't mean it won't be a logistical nightmare accomplishing the training and monitoring required to 100% convert agriculture worldwide to these new more modern production systems. And that's even with an eager and motivated farming community. But add the factor that many farmers are resistant to is almost certain there will be holdouts to antiquated "green revolution" industrialized systems.

    So the real solution won't be keeping emissions the same and sequestering CO2, but rather in reducing emissions a % and improving agriculture a complementary %. Reduce emissions 50% then sequester more carbon 50%. Reduce emissions 80%, then increase sequestration 20%.  Whatever can be done right now as long as both combined = >100%. Then we would be in drawdown. And instead of a negative side effects drawdown into the ocean, we have a beneficial drawdown into our soils. We have working solar, wind, and hydro systems to reduce emissions while still providing the energy we need and we have working agricultural systems to increase sequestration while still providing all the food we need.

    Lets not get all wrapped up in trying to do this all one certain way or all another way. Combined it becomes relatively easy.

    Moderator Response:

    [DB] That is off-topic here.  Any wishing to respond may do so, at the link given.

  36. 2018 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #25

    J Hansen deserves a medal for his work, and his tremendous commitment. His scenario B predictions have been well substantiated by real world temperatures, and are accurate enough to provide compelling evidence of the increasing greenhouse effect. He himself thought scenario B level emissions was the most likely.  It disgusts me the way people try and falsely distort his predictions, to make them look as weak as possible.

    Fossil fuel interests and libertarian ideologies have indeed dominated and influenced politics and have combined with a strongly emergent and destructive, vicious tribalism. At this rate America will divide into two separate warring countries, the red states and the blue states.

    The ranked choice voting system is compelling, and sounds similar to the single transferable vote system which is used in the Australian Senate, Ireland and Canada. NZ has mixed member proportional representation, which has lead to less partisan divisions and extremes of policy than America, but it can sometimes lead to very small parties having excessive power. STV is a more optimal system, but takes some effort to get your head around it.

    It seems to me like confrontational party political systems are all rather old fashioned and from a time when there was a huge and legitimate battle for workers basic rights. Surely we have moved beyond this? We should be electing parties less on partisan ideology and gut instincts, and more like a board of directors, so parties who have the best qualified people, and a rich diversity of ideas and a real commitment to everyone. Thats all you really need.

    The other problem is money in politics. Wealthy campaign donors, business groups and lobby groups have disproportionate influence. These various sources of influence do not balance out, and imho it looks like extremists particulary of business interests and wealthy libertarian ideologues dominate. The public good is not given proper representation, so the system is flawed.

    Campaign spending should be funded out of taxes, and it would cost nothing in the greater scheme of things, or at least it should be capped. There's nothing in Americas Constitution that forbids this. The first amendment has been invoked to justify private funding of election campaigns, but this seems absurd to me. But the bottom line is the entire political system and its methods of funding is obviously broken, and this is being ignored.

  37. michael sweet at 06:46 AM on 25 June 2018
    Wally Broeker: Father of “Global Warming”, in a Warning to his Granddaughter

    OPOF and Nigelj,

    I think that we basically agree.  I prefer not to post more on this topic.

  38. One Planet Only Forever at 02:33 AM on 25 June 2018
    Wally Broeker: Father of “Global Warming”, in a Warning to his Granddaughter

    nigelj and michael sweet,

    I agree that rapidly reducing the burning of fossil fuels is the required action.

    And the consequences of that activity that are not reversible make it clear that what has already been done is unacceptable. A target limit like 1.5 C impact is understandably still going to produce unacceptable consequences. Actions to further correct the harm that has been done to the future generations should be understood to be required.

    Some examples of other consequences that are not reversible are:

    • collapsed structures of over-drawn aquifers. Some aquifer have been drawn down so much that the geological structures they occupied have collapsed, meaning they can not be recharged to their previous capacities.
    • Contamination of ground water/aquifers by leaked liquid fossil fuels. This can be very difficult to 'completely clean up'.

    And CO2 removal can be understood to be required because even 1.5 C impact will result in understandably harmful consequences that the future generations of humanity will have to try to correct or live with.

    And the required actions, including the removal of CO2, undeniably require the richest, most powerful and most fortunate to 'behave the best - be real leaders of development in the required direction', behave better than anyone less successful than they are. The required corrective actions can clearly be understood to be 'at the expense of their potential opportunity for more personal benefit', and they have to be required to 'like that'.

    Getting away with behaving less ethically undeniably results in a competitive advantage. The temptation to win that way will always exist. Effective means to correct people tempted to behave that way is clearly required, the sooner the better.

    And that correction of attitudes will undeniably be required to achieve the required corrections of what has developed and sustainable future development. That correction will require the biggest winners be the most ethical and most helpful. There needs to be effective limits on their ability to abuse excuses like 'what they did cannot be proven to be illegal' (particularly because their winning can lead to bad laws being written and bad law enforcement occurring in their favour)

    Anyone not wanting to lead the pursuit of sustainable development for the future of humanity is welcome to step down from any unjustified higher position in society they may have mistakenly achieved, the sooner the better, until they learn the importance of being better.

  39. Wally Broeker: Father of “Global Warming”, in a Warning to his Granddaughter

    M Sweet, there actually is technology to suck CO2 out of the air, and costs are cheaper than were thought, according to an article in Nature Journal.  This is a very recent article you might not have come across. I have also seen studies showing there are enough porous rock formations and old oil wells for a huge volume of CO2 storage.

    Having said that, I'm distinctly 'sceptical' and I include it just for information, and in my view it is last resort material. It also seems like it would have enormous political difficulties, because it would require considerable subsidies. We all know what the correct solutions are.

  40. michael sweet at 18:09 PM on 24 June 2018
    Wally Broeker: Father of “Global Warming”, in a Warning to his Granddaughter


    There is currently no technology for removing CO2 from the atmosphere in bulk.  If technology existed the job is far beyond immense.  It is not clear where the CO2 could be stored.  How could you pay the cost?

    Until I see answers to these questions I see no reason to discuss the effects of removing CO2 from the atmposphere.  The projected cost is so high that I see no reason to think any significant amount will be sequestered. 

    It is worth doing research to see if a technology for CO2 removal can be found.

    Since the ocean is not saturated with CO2, if emissions were to cease the ocean would absorb a lot of CO2 and atmospheric levels would decrease.  That would be bad for the ocean but temperatures would be less of a problem.

    I agree that the future should not be saddled with this problem.  The sooner action is taken the smaller the problem will be.  Installing renewable energy ASAP will lower CO2 emissions.

  41. One Planet Only Forever at 08:52 AM on 24 June 2018
    Wally Broeker: Father of “Global Warming”, in a Warning to his Granddaughter

    michael sweet,

    I am trying to develop a better understanding as a basis to present a brief statement about the negative impacts of increased CO2 that potentially will not be corrected/reversed by a future reduction of the already created impacts, and the impacts that would take a very long time to correct/reverse.

    I may have been incorrect in believing that the negative impacts on shellfish and corals will eventually be reversed. The increase of CO2 could lead to extinctions of many of these organisms, and extinction is not reversible.

    Instead of my comment@7 stating: "However, removing the excess atmospheric CO2 will not reverse all of the damage done. A lot of the CO2 is absorbed in the ocean where it reacts to change the acidity of the oceans, which will not be reversed by removing the human increase of the CO2 from the atmosphere."

    I would now say something like: "However, removing the excess atmospheric CO2 will not reverse all of the damage done. A large percentage of the excess CO2 created by burning fossil fuels is absorbed in the ocean where most of it chemically reacts resulting in a change of the acidity of the oceans (and that CO2 will start coming back into the atmosphere as the atmospheric CO2 levels are reduced). Many of the impacts of the increased CO2 changes to ocean chemistry - such as extinctions of coral, shellfish and other carbonate life forms - will not be reversed by removing the human increase of the CO2 from the atmosphere. Many other impacts will be very slow to be corrected by removal of the excess CO2. Even a rapid reduction of CO2 back down to 280ppm (or at least down to 350 ppm) would need a continued CO2 removal as the ocean slowly 'gives back' CO2 that had been rapidly absorbed."

    And even that statement does not briefly address everything that is related to this incredibly harmful global geoengineering 'experiment' that 'future generations have to try to live with or correct' that is created by current and prior generations not caring to responsibly limit their ability to enjoy 'their lives', choosing to create problems that caring responsible current day and future humans have to try to correct (rather than correcting their understandably unsustainable and damaging 'Pursuits of Happiness', and fighting against any effort to 'limit/correct their behaviour' as an unfair limit of their freedom to believe what they want to excuse doing what they want to do).

  42. Video: Hansen’s Global Warming Prediction at 30. How did He Do?

    I wonder how the present air pollution, largely from Asia compares with the amount of polution that Pinatubo put into the atmosphere.  Hence what will be the effect when Asia cleans up her atmospheric pollution a her populations are beginning to demand.

  43. New research, June 11-17, 2018

    Overcoming public resistance to carbon tax

    The methods suggested are ways to hoodwink the public, to pull the wool over their eyes.  The solution is far more simple.  Adopt Tax and Dividend as proposed by Jim Hansen.  Resistance evaporates and the public gets a fair deal.

  44. 97% of Climate Scientists Really Do Agree

    97% is outdated.

    99.84% scientific consensus on AGW

    => The Consensus on Anthropogenic Global Warming Matters

  45. Video: Hansen’s Global Warming Prediction at 30. How did He Do?

    Hansen did rather well, and a lot better than these hilariously wrong sceptics.

  46. Wally Broeker: Father of “Global Warming”, in a Warning to his Granddaughter

    Nigelj @ 13 ,

    Harrumph . . . my apologies for my poor communication, if it gave you the impression that the Iron Mountain Report qualifies as "interesting".

    The Report can certainly be described as droll satire . . . but (as the old saying goes) --> Brevity is the soul of wit.   And the Report's wit is far from briefly executed: it counts as exceedingly droll, for it is exceedingly long for its purpose.   In comparison: Mr Blair's masterpiece "1984" is not a particularly short novel, but it contains several themes, all masterfully executed and disturbingly relevant to our times.   Very little drollness to be found, apart from the irony (in today's health views) of ordinary Party members using saccharin while their bosses use sugar.  (It brings to mind that recent wonderful comment by a refugee/migrant hoping to go to live in the USA because "I want to live in a country where poor people are fat.")

    And my apologies for digressing.

  47. Wally Broeker: Father of “Global Warming”, in a Warning to his Granddaughter

    Phil, we call you deniers because you get so many things wrong, and remember all this nonsense you write is easily googled and checked, and so why wouldn't we lose patience with you?

    One example "the earth was 3-5 degrees f warmer than today and co2 was ten to 12 times higher also according to ice core data,,,"

    I have no idea where you get that from. Ice core data only goes back a million years and C02 concentrations were about 300ppm compared to about 400 ppm currently.

    Go back further and using other evidence and the PETM ( paleo eocence thermal maximum) 65 million years ago was 14 degrees celsius warmer than currently and had CO2 concentrations of around 1000 ppm, so less than 3 times more than today. This shows you just how much trouble we are getting into.

    Your claims about the sun are merely suggestions, so without much merit and have been refuted with hard data if you look at the "climate myths" list on this website, and falsely calling qualified people pseudo scientists is particularly ironic given your own rhetoric, but I doubt you would grasp this.

    I have no idea what the mountain report is about, but if Eclectic says its interesting I better have a look!

  48. Wally Broeker: Father of “Global Warming”, in a Warning to his Granddaughter

    Phil @ 11 ,

    your mention of the Iron Mountain Report is quite refreshing!   What a delightful spoof  --  a piece of exceedingly droll satire.   Though on the whole, it builds on the original ideas of Orwell's "1984" which were really more masterfully created by Orwell himself.

    But I have wandered off-topic from climate science.

    To return : Phil, it is time you made the effort to "be serious".   Please learn some science, and you will cease with the Flat Earth views you have expressed.

  49. Wally Broeker: Father of “Global Warming”, in a Warning to his Granddaughter

    why am I a denier if in 1100 ad, Eric the red discovered Greenland and it was green ?   the earth was 3-5 degrees f warmer than today and co2 was ten to 12 times higher also according to ice core data,,,,obviously it was not from mankind as fossil fuel burning did not occur until industrial revolution around 1700 ad,,,,,,,I suggest solar activity is the driver ,,,we just came out of a mini ice age and thats why it seemed like the  north pole was melting away ,,,but lets be serious and not succumb to fear pandering by psuedo scientists,,,,it goes very deep ,but I will refrain from the politics starting with the 1967 iron mtn report

  50. One Planet Only Forever at 23:59 PM on 22 June 2018
    Wally Broeker: Father of “Global Warming”, in a Warning to his Granddaughter

    michael sweet,

    I am aware of that eventual correction. But that is a much long time being corrected, a massive length of time compared to a typical human lifetime, unlike the rate of temperature and climate correction that will occur with a rapid correction of atmospheric CO2 levels. And the damage to shellfish and coral will take even longer to correct.

    I could have added that understanding, but where do you stop, because the details and amount of ocean damage and the duration of correction then needs to be added, and then more about all related impacts due to the ocean damage ....

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