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Comments 251 to 300:

  1. Sea level rise is exaggerated

    7:00 no sea level rise in La Jolla, CA
    12:00 Topex/Poseidon Satellite measurements are crude
    12:43 ENVISAT, European satellite with higher resolution, much lower sea level rise, decrease since 2010

    How do you explain Manhattan?  Has the land elevated there?

    Moderator Response:

    [Rob P] - Not surprisingly, sea level at New York has risen over the long-term. In the short-term, fluctuations in the ocean circulation are having an effect. Now that ice mass loss from the Greenland ice sheet is fully underway it will be interesting to see how that alters sea level rise along the North American east coast. There's a recent paper on the subject here: Causes of accelerating sea level on the East Coast of North America (Davis & Vinogradova [2017])

  2. In 2017, the oceans were by far the hottest ever recorded

    Thanks Glen - I do get it. I just hate reading "The fact that 2017 was the oceans’ hottest year doesn’t prove humans are warming the planet."

    Maybe it should have read "The fact that 2017 was the oceans’ hottest year BY ITSELF doesn’t prove humans are warming the planet." or something.

  3. Sea level rise is exaggerated


    Your first link (I cannot get the graph to copy here) is from Monterey Bay.  While it has a lower long range trend, the trend from 2010-present is very high, the opposite of your claim.  Your second graph, from Nantucket, shows a high long range trend but lower from 2010-present.  You must konw that individual locations have high noise and also land height change issues.  If that is the best you can find in the entire USA that indicates that sea level is rising rapidly.

    If you get some guages from Alaska they will actually show a long term decrease in sea level since there is strong isostatic lift (increase in land height) due to the melting of the glaciers from the ice age.  That does not mean the sea level is not rising, just that the land is rising faster.

  4. Sea level rise is exaggerated

    Here are a couple more around the U.S.

    There is certainly no acceleration in sea level rise and in fact a drop in sea level since 2010.
    My belief is that there has been additional snow and ice buildup causing the drop in sea level.  

    "Cherry Pick since 2010"?  Eight years of opposing data is not enough to make you question your hypothesis?

    Moderator Response:

    [DB] Multiple comments using the same failed rhetoric are unhelpful.  The facts are, global sea levels have risen since 2010.  Attempting to find a few areas where sea levels show different results is like using the existence of smaller waves at the oceanside following larger ones in an attempt to show that the tide has somehow stopped coming in.  It's a fallacy.

    Altimetric SLR

    We also know which of the components of SLR contribute to it most (mass increases vs thermal expansion):

    Mass increases

    And, from Hsu and Velicogna 2017, which areas will see more resultant SLR than others:

    SLR Fingerprints

    No amount of effusive prestidigitation (handwaving) can make that go away:

    Fake-skeptic SLR

    Please note that posting comments here at SkS is a privilege, not a right.  This privilege can be rescinded if the posting individual treats adherence to the Comments Policy as optional, rather than the mandatory condition of participating in this online forum.

    Please take the time to review the policy and ensure future comments are in full compliance with it.  Thanks for your understanding and compliance in this matter.

  5. Sea level rise is exaggerated


    While there is no rise since 2010, there is a large rise since 2008.  The long term rise is clear.  Do you have a reason for selecting 2010 or was it just to cherry pick your claim?

    Have you ever seen the escalator?


    Do you think you could make a similar graph from the tide guage in New York?  

  6. New research, January 15-21, 2018

    Xulonn, I just tried the #32 and it opened with no problem. Perhaps it was just a temporary problem. There has been some problems with opening Wiley papers recently, though.

  7. In 2017, the oceans were by far the hottest ever recorded


    John Abraham was just being conservative. But actually, these numbers alone do go a loing way to show it is humns becasue they rule out lots of other posibilities.

    This article from 2014 is using older data but the case is the same - the new numbers just make it clearer.

  8. In 2017, the oceans were by far the hottest ever recorded

    NODC is showing the same. Drop in 2016 then recovery in 2017. They had to lift the verticl scale from a max of 20 to 25 a few years back. Looks like they will have to do it again next year.

  9. Sea level rise is exaggerated

    George @277 , the tide gauge records collated by NOAA, for The Battery, on Manhattan, show a 400 mm rise in sea level during the past 160 years.   (Strangely, the record shows a gap from about 1879 - 1893.)   As you say, the reference no. is 8518750.

    Mean sea level rise approx 2.8 mm per year, over that 160 years. 

    Possibly Manhattan Island is developing a strong tilt in recent times, with the northern end of the island lifiting high?   I must look more closely at the Empire State Building, to see if it appears out of plumb.  My previous impressions were that it was nowhere like as bad as that skyscraper in Pisa (fortunately).

  10. Sea level rise is exaggerated

    I guess Manhattan must be elevating to actually show a decrease in sea level since 2010.  And certainly no acceleration in sea level rise for more than 150 years.

    Moderator Response:

    [PS] Precisely what point are you trying to make here from the basis of a single tide station? The relevance to the article is not clear.

  11. In 2017, the oceans were by far the hottest ever recorded

    "The fact that 2017 was the oceans’ hottest year doesn’t prove humans are warming the planet. But, the long term upward trend that extends back many decades does prove global warming."

    Clever little wiggle there. Implying that... hey, earth is warming but we can't be sure that humans are responsable.

    Passive agressive denialism or just misinformation?

    Moderator Response:

    [DB] From the article's concluding paragraph:

    "Fortunately, we know why the oceans are warming (because of human greenhouse gases), and we can do something about it. We can take action to reduce the heating of our planet by using energy more wisely and increasing the use of clean and renewable energy (like wind and solar power)."

    Emphasis added.

  12. New research, January 15-21, 2018

    Planting corn (maize) for biofuels is also pretty dubious, unless its limited strictly for aircraft applications. In that case algae based biofuels would be ideal, as they don't encroach on food crop lands.

  13. New research, January 15-21, 2018

    Imo biofuels have very limited application. Sometimes we get too focused on the science possibilities, and fail to do enough practical thinking. For example, to have any substantial impact, biofuels require a lot of land, and land is a scare resource. We have enormous pressure for food crops, grazing land, and forestry for building construction, and now also as a carbon sink.

    It doesn't make a lot of sense turning crop lands into forestry plantations. Food crops are fundamental to humanity, and so will be prioritised, which is why it's so hard preserving what forests remain. It's  sad to see degradation of the rainforests, and it should stop,  but let's at least acknowledge why it happens.To think we can plant vast quantities of more forests seems very idealistic to me.

    Replacing electricity generation with wood fired plant with biofuels doesn't make a lot of sense, when other totally clean alternatives now exist like wind and solar. Ditto biofuels for cars don't make a lot of sense, when electric cars are a now reality.

    Imo the only application of biofuels that makes some degree of sense is 1)fuels for aircraft, because alternatives like electric powered aircraft are so challenging and 2) poor countries are better to burn wood than coal.

    Signed, biofuels sceptic.

  14. New research, January 15-21, 2018

    Re: #1 Does replacing coal with wood lower CO2 emissions? Dynamic lifecycle analysis of wood energy: what about residues from trees that are harvested anyway for forest products? I believe less than 1/3 of the biomass makes it into forest products (i.e. tops and bottoms, bark, sawdust, other bits and pieces). What about fallen trees on the forest floor? What about grass? Algae? Municipal solid waste? Agricultural wastes? Some of all of the above could end up as fugitive methane. Advanced biofuels have a higher value than displacing coal (which other sources of energy can do nicely) – they can give us liquid fuels for transportation. Let’s not put all our eggs in the EV basket! Biomass can be the feed-stock for everything we currently get from oil and gas. That was my impression from reading Beyond Oil and Gas: The Methanol Economy (Aug 2011), by George A. Olah, Alain Goeppert and G.K Surya Prakash. To pre-empt someone saying there’s a mismatch in supply versus demand, I’d say that’s a strawman argument based on the all too frequently heard “all or nothing” mentality. On the contrary, surely any carbon neutral contribution can be worthwhile.

  15. New research, January 15-21, 2018

    At least a few bad links with same error (such as #32 on moulins).  My browser trys to connect to the link, fails, and then switches to and displays the following message: 

    "Firefox can’t establish a connection to the server at" 

    Doing an IP lookup for that address yields: 

    "You have entered reserved IP Address for private internet use and IP lookup for these will return no results."   

    In the "moulin" example, the fault appears to be with the paper's source Wiley's online library - and not Skeptical Science, because if I look up the paper's title in Google and click on that link, I get the same error.

  16. New research, January 15-21, 2018

    => Analysis: The climate papers most featured in the media in 2017

    (Carbon Brief)

  17. So, why is two degrees the magic number?

    Winter Solstice

    The winter has not been unusually cold yet this year.   It is only cold compared to the record warm winters we have gotten used to.  It is probably warmer than the average winter 50-75 years ago.  The issue is that people have gotten used to it always being warm.  Most people only remember the last 10 or so years of weather.

    According to the NOAA record temperatures page, in the last 30 days there were only 17 all time record cold temperatures set (only 19 in the past year).  This compares to the 177 all time high record temperatures set last summer.  The number of record lows was less than you would expect based on long term averages.  The media emphasizes the cold and ignores the heat.

    There were only 100 monthly low temperatures in the last 30 days while there were 115 mothly highs.  The daily records (in the last 30 days 7400 record lows and 4000 highs) are not as hard to break and there are a few more record lows.

    Keep in mind that the news reports are about all the cold when we see that there are as many hot monthly records as cold (it is very rare for a hot all time record to be set in the middle of winter).

    Compare the current normal cold weather to the record hot temperatures set during March 2012 when at least four locations the low temperature at night broke the previous daily highest temperature record.  Monthly records from April were broken in March (April is normally much hotter than March).  

    Moderator Response:

    [DB] WinterSolstice is the 3rd sock puppet of banned user Pluto.  No further replies to it are necessary, as all such sock puppets are now recused from further participation here.

  18. WinterSolstice at 17:18 PM on 26 January 2018
    So, why is two degrees the magic number?

    Could "dangerous climate change" also include record low temperatures striking the northeastern and midwestern USA this winter season along with severe weather events caused by these cold fronts colliding with warmer, moister air from other regions?

    Moderator Response:

    [JH] Your question does not compute. To understand why, go to the SkS Climate Science Glossay and carefully read the definitions of climate and weather

  19. Antarctica is gaining ice

    matt - as per JH comment, you need to take notice as to which ice you are talking about. Sea ice extent appears to be influenced by katabatic winds bring cold air from the interior over the surrounding sea. These increase outward dispersion of sea-ice was well as freezing the surface so you can increase seaice extent despite a warming ocean as per papers cited in article. The strength of the katabatic winds seems to be influenced by the ozone levels in the stratosphere. However, more observations are needed before this can established with certainity.

    Land ice is a more complex picture. Early models (TAR I think), predicted Antarctic land ice would increase as warming seas resulted in more moisture being blown over Antarctica and falling as snow. However, this is balanced by substantial ice sheet losses on margins especially in West Antarctica as calving rates accelerate. You can see the pictures/videos of land ice mass change over here. Broadly it is mass gain around EAIS and mass loss of WAIS, with overall net mass loss.

  20. So, why is two degrees the magic number?

    good video.

    and let us remember the maunder minimum (estimated at -.4C) caused the little ice age. so if -.4C did that, how can +2C somehow be "ok"?

  21. One Planet Only Forever at 03:52 AM on 26 January 2018
    So, why is two degrees the magic number?

    Three terms need more consideration: Us, Dangerous and Sustainable.

    'Us' is a term that is wide open to interpretation. It can be used/abused to refer to any sub-set of humanity or to humans as a sub-set of life on this amazing planet. And it can easily exclude future generations (They are not Us!). The assessment of acceptability of any Private Interest (and all there is is a collective of Private Interests - even in Communism) to develop a better future for humanity (or to ensure there is a future for humanity) must be that Private Interest actions will not be expected to result in any 'Net Harm' to any other aspect of life, with more conservative caution applied when there is less understood about the potential for harm. Using the term Us does not clearly focus on protecting the future of humanity, it excuses Private Interest sub-sets.

    'Dangerous' can be perceived to be significantly different for different Private Interests. The loss of potential Profitability can be seen as 'dangerous' (by a sub-set Us). And the loss of perceptions of superiority, prosperity and opportunity can also be thought of as 'dangerous' (by a sub-set Us). For climate science and the clear understanding of the need to rapidly terminate an overdeveloped popular pursuit of profit, it is better to relate things to the Harm done to life. That consideration is more difficult for Private Interest bias to argue against (Private Interest can be expected to try to excuse a desire or belief). The activities associated with burning of fossil fuels have always done 'net harm' to other life, and understanding that it was harmful was well established in the 1960s and some harms like the SO2 and soot were addressed, sort of, eventually. And those harmful activities cannot be economically sustained even if the harm done is excluded from consideration (burning up non-renewable resources has no future). In fact, to remain economically viable the understood harms have to be increasingly excused to allow the activity to continue to be profitable/popular.

    A focus on developing sustainable human activity is the Key. And sustainable activity means all humans fitting in as a sustainable part of a sustainable robust and diverse web of life on this, or any other, amazing planet (Darwin identified that things thrive and survive based on how they adapted evolved and 'Fit in'). It also means activity that does not require excuses or denial to defend it.

    Some things can be observed to Thrive unsustainably to their ultimate demise. Humanity has the ability to think about how humanity 'collectively thrives', and act collectively to ensure that Private Interest sub-sets of humanity do not Win a better present for themselves to the detriment of any Others. The development of the gift of a sustainable and constantly improving future for all of humanity needs to become the understood Objective Measure of acceptable actions.

    The Sustainable Development Goals are a solid basis for evaluating acceptable actions and identifying what needs to be corrected. And like all well developed understandings they are open to improvement if a Good Reason is presented that improves the Understanding, but they are highly unlikely to be dramatically changed.

    Lack of responsible correction/limits of behaviour, just letting pursuit of popularity and profit produce the results it produces, developed the circumstance that made limiting global average surface temperature impacts to 1.0C impossible and limiting them to 1.5C unlikely. The need to curtail the burning of fossil fuels was understood in the 1960s, at a time when a 1.0C limit was achievable, but the required actions would have been to the detriment of many very wealthy people and would have requiring a reduction of perceptions of superiority and prosperity in the 'supposedly most advanced and developed nations'. The result of the actions of the collective of all Private Interests (all there is is the collective of Private Interests) was clearly sub-set evaluations of what was 'Dangerous' to 'Us' that resulted in over-development in dangerous unsustainable directions (and the development of misleading marketing) - and that needs to be understood to be the expected result of using Popularity and Profitability as the measure of the acceptability of Private Interest actions - and it needs to be understood that increased beliefs in the freedom of everyone to believe whatever they want and act as they wish makes things worse - that belief is Dangerous to the future of humanity because unacceptable pursuers of Private Interest can abuse 'desired beliefs' to excuse understandably unacceptable actions.

  22. So, why is two degrees the magic number?

    Knowing the actions that achieve the various mean temperature rises are very complex and beyond the understanding of most the public, including myself.  The Paris Climate Accord also referenced the goal of achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2nd half of this century.  I want this measure to recieve more attention because it is much easier to understand.  The problem simply defined is the inbalance of emissions over what can be sequestered.  I want people to think of the inbalance like a financial debt.  Since the warming we are already experiencing is causing amplifying affects (reduced ice cover to reflect light out, increased dark ocean converting light to heat, melting of tundra releasing methane, et) all of the new inbalance needs to be paid back.  The only way to reduce atmospheric carbon is to emit less than can be sequestered.  I developed this concept in a blog

    When we finally stop emitting more than we sequester, we will stop adding to our debt.  However, we are not out of debt.  How soon we stop over emitting determines how high our debt will be.  The annual increase in carbon concentration is an exact measure of how much emissions is over net zero.  Understanding a simple measure of the problem gives us a much better chance of understanding a measure of the solution.  To pay back the debt we must imagine and build a NET SEQUESTRATION ECONOMY, where our total human emissions are less than what can be sequestered.  We need to lower our carbon concentration in the atmosphere (debt) until there are no significant amplifying affects.  

  23. Antarctica is gaining ice

    Part of your explanation for increasing ice in the Antarctic is that it's getting colder, and then you go on to say that it's actually getting warmer and that ice is decreasing, so which is it? 

    "i) Ozone levels over Antarctica have dropped causing stratospheric cooling and increasing winds which lead to more areas of open water that can be frozen (Gillet 2003, Thompson 2002, Turner 2009)."

    "You're also correct in pointing out that snow accumulating in the East Antarctic interior is increasing, presumably due to increased precipitation caused by more humid conditions caused by warming air."

    Moderator Response:

    [JH] Please specify which "ice" you are referring to. Is it sea ice in the oceans surrounding the Antarctic continent, or is it glacial ice formed on the continent itself?

  24. So, why is two degrees the magic number?

    Recommended supplemental readings:

    Global temperature targets will be missed within decades unless carbon emissions reversed, News, University of Southampton, Jan 22, 2018

    Climate change: is the glass half full or half empty? by Feike Sybesma, World Economic Forum, Jan 24, 2018

  25. So, why is two degrees the magic number?

  26. So, why is two degrees the magic number?

    When this is a real important issue, why do they still need to put a stupid ad in front of the video?

  27. From the eMail Bag: A Deep Dive Into Polar Ice Cores

    The skeptic argument goes something like this: "the age of the air bubbles is spread out over hundreds of years, therefore if there were a large CO2 spike and the spike quickly disappeared, it would be invisible in the record. Therefore we don't know that our modern CO2 spike is anything unusual."

    This article is a good start at responding to this claim. I suppose part of the response is that not a single climate scientist, including any of the contrarians (the 3%), has thought of any way that CO2 could disappear from the atmosphere as quickly as it has been added.

    But it would be much better to have a direct answer like "we have high-resolution data for the last 12,000 years and no spikes have been observed, therefore no spikes exist in at least the last 12,000 years."

    Unfortunately this article isn't clear enough to draw such a conclusion. One way it would be more clear is if it gave at least one example to demonstrate how to calculate the gas age distribution. This article implies that the majority of molecules in the Law Dome air bubbles have an age spread of 7 or 8 years because they are "about 8-15 years" old. But is this directly related to the Δ-age? The article says

    The bubbles are known to close off over a vertical ice age range [the Lock-in Zone] that corresponds to roughly 10% of the gas age-ice age difference, which intuitively should result in a gas age distribution width corresponding to 10% of the gas age-ice age difference [the Δ-age].... 

    So rather than 10%, a good rule-of-thumb, according to Dr. Christo Buizert, is to take 5% of the Δ-age to find the age distribution.

    Intuitively? It's not intuitive to me. So what does it mean? For starters, how is the concept of "age distribution" related to the 7 or 8 year spread we saw for Law Dome? The Δ-age was not provided for Law Dome. Can I infer from this that, if 50% of Law Dome air molecules have an 8-year spread, that the Δ-age for Law Dome is 8yrs / 5% = 160yrs? That doesn't sound right.

  28. Renewables can't provide baseload power


    Fossil fuel cars are only 20% efficient while electric cars are 90% efficient.  If we all drive the same distance using renewable energy we will use only 25% of the energy required for fossil fuels.  If gobal transport is twice as far we will use half as much energy. Fossil power plants are less than 50% efficient while nulcear plants are only 30% efficient.  Renewable sources are 90+% efficient.  That alone reduces power usage substantially.  Insulating buildings better adds substantial energy savings. 

    The authors of your link do not understand this basic concept.  The consensus of research in the field is that your link is incorrect.  They have not met the burden of proof.  They additionally ask for proof that new technologies can perform claiming that historically it has not been used.  Of course all new technologies have no historical data, that is why they are new.

    The rest of your comment is also uninformed.  Try to raise your game.

  29. Renewables can't provide baseload power

    The Burden of proof is solely on 100% renewables studies. To say we can do it through reducing energy usage is moulding the data to fit our ideals - not very skeptical. As a skeptical site you should really be taking the Jacobsen Study down as it has been firmly rebutted which he is now sueing over instead of correcting his work or replying in a scientific manner. And for a thorough look at what the Burden of Proof needs to be for 100% renewables I recommend the following (LINK)

    Moderator Response:

    [DB] Link breaking page formatting shortened.

    [PS] Given the authorship, I hope you are reading with the same skepticism you apply (rightly) to Jacobsen.

  30. New study ‘reduces uncertainty’ for climate sensitivity

    It is just shorthand. CS is meaning ECS. The Cox study is only about ECS.

  31. So, why is two degrees the magic number?

    The two degrees issue originated back in the 1970's. Heres the complete history from Carbon Brief, in a very nice readable article.

  32. New study ‘reduces uncertainty’ for climate sensitivity

    How doečs it come, that the central estimate of CS is 2.8C and that of ECS is also 2.8C? Should not be ECS considerably higher than CS?

  33. One Planet Only Forever at 04:41 AM on 25 January 2018
    Switching to electric cars is key to fixing America's 'critically insufficient' climate policies


    The perception of what owning a car was all about definitely will change.

    Car ownership always was an significant expense for the average person.

    Any place on the planet that was developed based on the 'need to have a car' will be at a significant economic competitive disadvantage in the future.

    Automated cars will very efficiently travel through level crossings. Freeways through developed areas are wastes of land that increase travel distances and the elevated portions are expensive to maintain.

    However, the future disadvantage of developing down unsustainable paths is 'someone else's problem' which is the poor excuse behind most unsustainable and damaging Private Interest pursuits of personal benefit.

  34. New study ‘reduces uncertainty’ for climate sensitivity

    It sounds like climate change won’t be that bad because we won’t go over 3.4 C! you think we might avoid an ongoing refugee crisis involving nuclear powered countries?

  35. Switching to electric cars is key to fixing America's 'critically insufficient' climate policies

    Looking at that first graph anticipates hope!

    Electric trucks will be the leap but when autonomous vehicles get the go ahead I think the car will largely disappear as it represents personal freedom and autonomous cars take that away ...

    ...just to think: the 21st century was started with 4 jet liners and now we‘re looking envisioning crazy stuff like 150 passenger electric planes! Why???

  36. Human CO2 is a tiny % of CO2 emissions

    What "seems" to you, would appear to be a reflection of your biases if you cant back it with evidence. Take Eclectic's advice. Pick what you think is his most compelling argument and check it against our rebuttals. Just stating your biases without any evidence to support is what is called "sloganeering" here. if you want to dispute the science, then put up the evidence. Make sure you understand what the science actually does say (read it from source or the IPCC summary), as opposed to how some denialist misrepresents it. Dealing with strawman arguements is tiresome.

  37. New study ‘reduces uncertainty’ for climate sensitivity

    The Cox study has been criticised by an article filed by Rasmus over at

  38. Human CO2 is a tiny % of CO2 emissions

    Well he seems open minded to me. Between his work and that seen on Adapt 2030 it seems to me like the grand solar min, the dalton min, the magnetosphere and the galactic cross correlate with the earths climate far better than an tiny increase in a trace gas. But if me being open minded to that hypothesis makes me a closed minded shill perhaps this isn't the site for me. The comments seem very one sided. I don't feel this is the place for a truly unbiased debate. 

    Thankfully we'll know in a short time won't we. If 2024 is record colds we know CO2 is less important than cosmic rays. If it's hot again we know CO2 outweighs the suns  But thankfully it will be seled! 

    Moderator Response:

    [JH] Sloganeeing snipped. 

    Please note that posting comments here at SkS is a privilege, not a right.  This privilege can be rescinded if the posting individual treats adherence to the Comments Policy as optional, rather than the mandatory condition of participating in this online forum.

    Please take the time to review the policy and ensure future comments are in full compliance with it.  Thanks for your understanding and compliance in this matter.

  39. Switching to electric cars is key to fixing America's 'critically insufficient' climate policies

    Tony Seba video on the electric vehicle disruption, and end of oil by 2030.

    This is Tony Seba's Clean Disruption Keynote presentation at the Swedbank Nordic Energy Summit in Oslo, Norway, March 17th, 2016.

  40. Switching to electric cars is key to fixing America's 'critically insufficient' climate policies

    What we are now seeing is market convergence of decarbonised electricity generation and most forms of transport because of advances in technology which increasingly make use of fossil fuels more expensive. Let there be no doubt about it – those who have invested in fossil fuel industries will fight a rear-guard action in a vain attempt to prevent or slow this transition.

    They will fail because two developments in electricity generation are occurring and gaining momentum:

    Firstly: The storage capacity of batteries is increasing and their cost is reducing which, combined with the development of pumped hydro, enables solar and wind generation to become dispatchable 24/7.

    Secondly: Batteries with capacity to store all the energy needed by an average household will become increasingly affordable and, in combination with roof-mounted solar panels, will enable many homes to go off-grid, reducing demand from grid-generators.

    The move to wind and solar generation is increasing and displacing fossil fuels by (a) generating at less cost than fossil fuels and (b) increasing use of electricity by making it available to those who do not have access to it – without the need for costly, unaffordable infrastructure. Solar and wind generation are already available at lower capital and operating costs than is fossil fuel generation.

    It is likely that within the next 2-5 years battery technology will have reduced the price of batteries to less than $100/kWh, making the capital cost of electric vehicles less than vehicles powered by the internal combustion engine. As soon as this is achieved, producers will cease manufacturing fossil-fuelled vehicles (which will become unsellable) and consumers will only ‘buy electric’.

    These transitions to solar/wind generation and electrification of transport could be complete as soon as 2040, even earlier!

  41. Switching to electric cars is key to fixing America's 'critically insufficient' climate policies

    State and federal incentives for buying electric vehicles in America:

    Key point. Federal income tax credit of $7,500, and various different state incentives.

  42. Anti-vaccers, climate change deniers, and anti-GMO activists are all the same


    Your general argument appears to be "sometime science gets things wrong", which is obviously, true, but then you see to extend this to "so anything I don't like I can presume is also wrong". As I pointed out before, that is item #8 on the list in the post.

    You need to have a better reason for thinking the science on climate change is wrong. The best reason is evidence and a better theory. The "skeptics" only present evidence after rejecting most of it (items 1, 2, and 3 on the list), and their alternative "theories" tend to be self-contradictory and often require the rejection of basic physics.

    Science advances by providing better explanations, not hand-waving away the current ones.

  43. Anti-vaccers, climate change deniers, and anti-GMO activists are all the same

    Alan @53 , I whole-heartedly assure you that there is no stalemate, as far as my opinions are concerned.  (And I am fairly sure that I speak on behalf of almost all of the scientific-minded users of this website.)

    I am very open to being persuaded by you, that I [and the scientific consensus] am largely in the wrong about the harms coming from AGW and about the urgent need to counter CO2 emissions.   Few things would please me more, than to learn that there is no problemo.

    Unfortunately, Alan, you have provided no evidence or arguments that the 99.9% of climate scientists are wrong.   Your comments lack logic and science — and worse, they appear to demonstrate your fixed resistance to to clear & rational thinking about AGW & related problems.

    If you feel that is not the case, then you are very welcome to raise and discuss/dispute the various aspects — but please do so at the appropriate threads (rather than this thread).   Best of luck !

  44. Anti-vaccers, climate change deniers, and anti-GMO activists are all the same

    Eclectic, I appreciate the time you took for your answer, but we're at a stalemate as we both hold contrary opinions.
    And as this website is dedicated to climate change, it is not my desire or intent to proselytize and convert readers, and I won't descend to "troldom", so this will be my last post.
    For disclosure's sake, I was erroneously directed to this site by google search, and saw the site interesting, with an open comments section (uncensored).

    Moderator Response:

    [PS] Well constructed comments are very welcome on this site. However, it can be very frustrating for an author to write a piece, and then have discussed elsewhere (especially on as a repost on site that the author might not frequent). It would be courtesy to put a copy of your comments on the authors site as I suspect he would be interested in discussing your points.

  45. 2018 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #3

    Thank's for printing Climate Feedbacks interesting review of 25 articles.  I noticed that the most viral articles generally had something specific and simple like polar bears, diseases, beans, and icebergs. The  least viral articles were dominated by  anonymous people casting doubt on the science, and technical claims about lack of warming or changes in ocean circulation.

    More people seem attracted to things easily understood and visualised like animals, rather than opinions of weather people, and technical issues.

    The ten most viral articles also contained fewer denialist claims on the whole than the next ten articles. 

    The denialist articles are not persuasive.

  46. Scott Pruitt insincerely asked what's Earth's ideal temperature. Scientists answer

    The article hit the nail on the head.  The best temperature is the one we have adapted to over they past 12,000 years or so.  It is often noted by scientists, looking at past interglacials, how unusual this period has been. Generally, a little before maximum ice melt as we emerge from a glacial, (not an ice age) carbon dioxide begins to drop and that combined with the current Miloankovitch cycle causes snow to begin to accumulate on the high lands of Baffin Island and to spread south.  Reading  Plought Plagues and Petroleum, it looks as if we reversed the steady drop in Carbon dioxide long before the industrial revolution by our agriculture.  We may have been responsible for this remarkably benign period.  Even so we were sliding into a glacial, albeit, more slowly than usual.  Then came along the black death and the extermination by disease of the population of North America.  We were very close and the recovery of the forests  with the draw down of Carbon dioxide, just nudged us into snow accumulation on Baffin Island.  The traces can still be seen in the halo of dead lichens around the highlands.  Our output of Carbon dioxide continued to increase and the process was reversed.  Now we have too much of a good thing and seem to be on the road to kicking ourselves into a dark age or perhaps a stone age.  It is as endlessly fascinating as a good horror movie, to see how incredibly smart we are individually and how incredibly dumb we are in the collective.  The one ring that controls them all is vested interest money in politics.

  47. TheNewDayBreaker at 04:06 AM on 22 January 2018
    The Key To Slowing Global Warming

    Riduna, could you provide me with your qualifications? (college degree and from where, profesiional position, and/or any awards you have won). I would love to cite this article for an argument I am making, but I will need your qualifications.

    Great article!

  48. Anti-vaccers, climate change deniers, and anti-GMO activists are all the same

    Alan @51  — Again, you are failing to achieve clarity [including validity] in the expression of your lines of argument.

    Your Paragraph 2  --  <"... even if there are thousands of well-established scientists agreeing on one theory, they could be proved wrong by only one person..."> (unquote) is a nonsense argument in the case of climate science.  Modern climate science is based in the "hard" sciences of physics & inorganic chemistry i.e. in well-integrated science involving cross-linking of large numbers of strands (strands of basic scientific theory meshed with experimental & empirical evidence).   Furthermore, regarding climate science, there is only about a score of "genuine" climate scientists who are [in modern parlance] Climate Deniers . . . and these 20 or so are unable to present any valid evidence or counter-hypothesis !    Worse, their ideas/statements seem mutually contradictory (as well as failing to possess plausibility !! ).

    Of the <"... at least a few hundred to thousands of high-level scientists who are accusing the CCT** ..."> (unquote), they are likewise possessing no valid case .   Instead, they lose their minds in a quagmire [ =swamp?  ;-)  ]  of empty rhetoric and/or extremist political posturing . . . but they possess no actual scientific reasoning to support their positions [positions plural] .    Sadly, some appear to be in their dotage, and some are possessed [ excuse pun  ;-)  ]  by extremist/fundamentalist religious beliefs which prevent them from acknowledging reality [ e.g. Spencer, Lindzen ] ,  and some seem not to know one end of a Lapse Rate from t'other.

    Evidence and logical reasoning, Alan — that is what the Deniers lack.


    Your Paragraph 3 --  Alan, you make an illogical argument when you try to equate the "hard sciences" to the "soft sciences" [e.g. sociology] or the distinctly-less-than-hard sciences such as medical science (and your case of the New England Journal of Medicine).   Apples and oranges, Alan.   Without taking away from the vast achievements of medical science during the past 200 years [anesthetics, surgery, vaccinations, drugs, etc] nevertheless the experiment-based advances of modern medicine are usually impeded by a vast complexity of confounding factors (as well as by the effect of human psychology).   These confounding complexities hamper the medical scientists in a way that does not exist in the vastly simpler area of physics/climate/meteorology.   Alan, your comparison/analogy is not valid, and so your argument is not valid.


    Your Paragraph 4 — Alan, nobody is mocking the most brilliant minds of the early centuries of science . . . but they lived in a very different scientific environment (from the cross-checking and weight of consistent evidence, found in the "hard sciences" of today).


    Your Paragraphs 5 & 6 ,  — Alan, it is all about the evidence.  The evidence supports the mainstream scientific consensus position (regarding climate).   There is no actual supporting evidence to be found for the (many and incoherent) positions of the deniers /science-deniers /denialists /call-them-what-you-will.   I myself would like to be able to dignify some of them with the term "contrarians" . . . but that cannot be, since to be a contrarian one must have something valid to base one's "counter-position" on.   And that is exactly what the deniers lack (as well as lacking logical commonsense risk management, and lacking decent compassion for billions of other human beings) .


    BTW, Alan, you also fail in your "local weather" argument . . . for instance while in the past two weeks or so, a small part [scientifically insignificant] of north-east North America has had a bitter cold snap — yet other parts of the world have been experiencing heat waves.   Even worse for your line of argument : the New England cold snap may well, to a considerable extent, be a result of Arctic warming (Arctic warming being a consequence of AGW).


    ** Alan, the "Climate Change Theory" term you use is an odd one — not generally used by scientists (likewise, even more odd, is your contraction "CCT" which would be meaningless to educated people).   Best to stick with standard English and standard/widely-used abbreviations, in climate discussions, Alan.  There is already more-than-enough appallingly-poor communication in the discussion of important topics, in today's world !

  49. Mt. Kilimanjaro's ice loss is due to land use

    The mount Kilimanjaro glaciers are inherently unstable: the ice at the bottom of the glacier touching the rocks melts, the glaciers lose their ‘grip’ on the mountain and ‘overhangs’ occur where the ice at the base has melted away, leaving just the ice at the top to survive.

  50. Consensus on consensus

    A few thoughts about the importance of consensus.

    1. William – it seems to me that your comment is self-contradictory. You say

    a. Consensus has little to do with science.
    b. Evidence is essential to science.
    c. We should base our arguments on the evidence.

    The use of the term ‘we’ indicates consensus concerning the evidence. Without this consensus there is no we who, you say, are to base arguments on the evidence.

    The essence of science is the process of correction. As experiments are performed or as more data are gathered by a community of scientists, our understanding of physical processes increases, our instruments are improved and our measurements and our theories (i.e., models) become more precise.

    Science is a communal enterprise. If you fail to get colleagues in your field to understand your experiments and theories you are failing as a scientist. If your colleagues, assuming they have reputations as capable experimentalists, are unable to replicate your findings you are failing as a scientist. It doesn’t mean that, in the end, their judgments will not be revised. It does mean, however, that the judgments of the scientific community— i.e., the consensus judgments of that community are important to the process of the scientific enterprise.

    A certain measure of disagreement within the scientific community is sometimes helpful. Not all consensus or agreement is important. But deviate too far from the consensus views of this community : reject the importance of things such as measurements, experiments, data, and the use of mathematics and your ability to interact with the scientific community will come to an end. Science could not exist as an enterprise without shared views of the value of evidence, data, and instrumentation.

    BBHY –

    I am with you here. Evidence is only convincing if it is understood. I am not a scientist. I cannot claim to understand much at all beyond the introductory sentences of a science journal article.

    I am no more capable of looking at the evidence for warming and arguing that this evidence is sufficient warrant to show that humans are causing warming than I can look at my x-rays and other medical evidence and claim that I need xyz surgery. I leave it to the scientific and medical experts to come to their conclusions. I would be a fool to disagree with the consensus of the scientific or the medical community.

    William –

    I agree with you on your views about rationality, mental short-cuts, biases etc. But the problem runs deeper. It affects scientists too. You say our scientific consensus is soundly based. How to we ever know this? There is no simple instrument that registers positively when consensus is soundly based.
    How would we verify the accuracy of such an instrument?

    Right now, the scientific consensus on AGW is meeting very little opposition from credible sources. All objections to the consensus are coming from opponents based on their political and economic interests. None of the objections are coming from credible scientific sources.

    So, I would argue that we think that our scientific consensus is soundly based because we have a consensus concerning how to conduct scientific inquiry – we agree on the use of data, the use of various instruments to collect that data, the use of various mathematical methods to evaluate that data, and we agree on the importance of open inquiry. Based on this consensus concerning how the scientific enterprise to to be conducted we can form a meta-consensus about the well founded basis of climate science.

    Its not quite like turtles all the way down but it is turtles down a bit further than you suggest.

    My point is no more than consensus is important and perhaps more important than its been treated in the comments.

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