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"The reality of climate change".

Discussion in 'Alpine & Southern' started by Taipan, Mar 24, 2006.

  1. Taipan

    Taipan Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    "The reality of climate change".

    Recently i was asked why the terms Climate Change and Global warming were not synonymous. My belief is that they are different. Ive placed an explanation below.

    In starting this thread, i hope other members of this forum who have an interest in climate change and are trying to understand the predicted warming known as global warming will post up the current understanding on a variety of climate change topics and/or global warming topics.

    Climate change
    The term "climate change" is sometimes used to refer to all forms of climatic inconsistency, but because the Earth's climate is never static, the term is more properly used to imply a significant change from one climatic condition to another. In some cases, climate change has been used synonymously with the term, global warming; scientists however, tend to use the term in the wider sense to also include natural changes in climate.


    and

    Global warming
    The progressive gradual rise of the earth's surface temperature thought to be caused by the greenhouse effect and responsible for changes in global climate patterns. An increase in the near surface temperature of the Earth. Global warming has occurred in the distant past as the result of natural influences, but the term is most often used to refer to the warming predicted to occur as a result of increased emissions of greenhouse gases.


    http://multimedia.wri.org/winterolympics2002/terms.html


    The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change is regarded by many as the leading world body in understanding climate change. There is certainly many other scientists who disagree with the science and the politics of the IPCC.

    Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change home site

    On this thread we should try and avoid discussion of the politics and focus on the science. I hope that we will get a good discussion on this subject over the coming months.

    So there are two questions.

    Do we accept that climate change is a naturally occuring phenomena?

    And secondly

    Are humans causing additional changes to the climate beyond normal climate change?

    If so, what scientific evidence is there that supports that hypothesis
     
    #1 Taipan, Mar 24, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 14, 2013
  2. Vermillion

    Vermillion Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    well, i guess i could have a go at some of this.

    firstly, sure, climatic change is the change of the climatic of the Earth. Like you said taipan, the earth's sphere's are not static and are ever changing, even though 'records' from 4.5Bya to now show that it's slowly organising itself and stablising a bit more, or should i say not fluctuating as much as the early earth.

    next, global warming to me seens to not just include the temperature increase on earth, but a lot of people also seem to include the Greenhouse gas concentrations into that phrase too. For me, 'global warming' is too a political term to use, seeing that everyone has used it to prop up their own agenda's when climatic change is concerned. For that reason, i am reluctant to ever refer to it. This is not to say i do not believe that the anthropogenic effect isnt influencing climatic change, it's just 'global warming' as a phrase has been cheapened too much.

    Which leads me to trying to answer your questions...

    1. Anyone who does not believe Climatic Change is a naturally occuring phenomena has rocks in their head, or has a severly skewed opinion. If someone says to you that climatic change is caused by humans then walk away, its just not worth continuing the conversation. Climatic change has been occuring since the accretion of the planet, and will always continue to occur. Anthropogenic Climatic change has only been really occuring since the industrial revolution, which is a tiny fraction of the planet's lifetime, so far. So yes, climatic change is a naturally occuring phenomena.

    2. In short. Yes. Duh. Again, if anyone disputs this, it should send off alarm bells and make u want to leave very quickly. Look at charts, look at concentration values. For example, lets take the most well known (but not the most efficient) greenhouse gas, CO2. Latest data suggests that CO2 is now 380ppm or close enough, which is the highest that any 'records' from the past 500,000 years has. People are ignorant though, and forget that in previous times the CO2 concentration has been as high as 20% the total composition of the atmosphere (or thereabouts [​IMG] ). But then forget that the whole composition of the atmosphere and the biosphere was completely different back then. So, what am i trying to say? Well, basically, no one knows if we can sustain an increase in GHG's. Seriously. I mean, the oceans have responded and now take up more carbon than they did before the industrial revolution, but there is still 3.3Gt (gigatonnes) of extra carbon per year going straight into the atmosphere.

    Another extremely (the most actually) important GHG is H20. Yup, water. Its the most efficient GHG . More of that in the atmosphere is going to bust it up even more. Good thing most of it sits in a big massive sink we call the ocean, which is a good thing.

    Anyway, maybe ive gotten a bit off track here. But, basically, and i dont have it here, but there's a study done that shows climatic change as it is at the moment, minus the 'natural' climatic change. This gives you the left over, which is basically what humans are contributing to climatic change.

    Anyways, ill leave it at that for now. If this thread keeps on developing i might be bothered getting some more information for you [​IMG]

    kris
     
    #2 Vermillion, Mar 26, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 11, 2013
  3. Taipan

    Taipan Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    For anybody who reads this thread dont expect simple answers.

    However i hope that those who read this thread over the winter of 2006 will have a better understanding then when they started.

    Its also incredably important that we all learn from this. Im looking at various reports, indicating various results. Are they right? Other reports may disprove some of their conclusions.

    That is why it is important for all of us from diverse backgrounds to pose different positons, which can be either accepted or rejected.

    If people, the media or organisations come with simple answers, you need to question why they are simple.

    There is nothing simple about climate change.

    Above you raised the issue of CO2 and H2o or water. In a previous thread Schaden Freude engaged in some good discussion. I hope he returns to add to this forum.

    One of the big underlying themes from information that ive read is about water vapour in the atmosphere and how it is ignored as a GHG (green house gas).

    One of the reasons being that water vapour occurs as a natural funtion of the planets atmosphere 99.99% come from natural causes.

    However the suggestion is that other gases, namely CO2 methane etc increasing causes greater amounts of water vapour. Other studies have found an increase in water vapour and clouds over the last 20 years. Why? Nobody has yet found a good reason why.

    In a recent thread i posted up the break down on gases in the atmosphere.

    The main global warming gases are water vapour Carbon dioxide CO2, Methane CH4, Nitrogen oxide N2O, Ozone, and CFC's.

    Lets further put this in persepctive. Volume of Gas as a % of greenhouse gases.

    Water vapour gas 95.00%
    Carbon Dioxide 3.62%
    Methane 0.36%
    Nitrous Oxide 0.95%
    CFC's & Other 0.07%
    Total 100.00


    But wait theres more! Havent we forgotten a few other gases.

    Nitrogen N2 78.08%
    Oxygen O2 20.95%
    Other 00.97%
    Total 100.00%

    Other includes all green house gases, and oxygen and nitrogen play no role in greenhouse effects.

    Now if you want take the green house gases above and insert them as a % into the other section. Water vapour = 0.92% Carbon Dioxide 0.035%, Methane, Nitrous Oxide & other = 0.013%.

    All of the green house gases exist naturally.

    Man is contributing to Carbon Dioxide, Methane
    Nitrous Oxide, CFC's (almost stopped).

    Carbon Dioxide is the largest but not the most potent.


    In the last 100 years the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere has risen by 32%. Emissions due to human activity represent only 1/20th of the natural additions of carbon to the atmosphere.


    As carbon CO2 raises from 0.035% to 0.038% we really must seriously wonder at its impact. If it was 3.5% to 3.8% maybe. If it was 35% to 38% yes most definetly. But 0.003 of a percent!

    Now what is wrong with this position? To understand the atmosphere we must understand all of the atmosphere and not just a part where CO2 supposedly represents 72% of the green house gases by eliminating an essential GHG water vapour.

    When combined with water vapour it drops to 3.618% of GHG.

    The issue of the position, rotation and wobble cycles of the earth relative to the sun are well documented but ill leave that to another post.
     
  4. Vermillion

    Vermillion Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    good points Taipan. I think with a topic as large as this it is important to break it down, and since you've picked up on my H20 part first, we'll go with that.

    You've started to talk about some feedback processes, and the list of these is so large and their inter-linkages so complex it would make anyone's head spin. This is why we have models [​IMG]

    Anyways, you are right. People overlook H20 because we dont directly pump it into the atmosphere, like we do CO2 and other gases. Anyone who has done general chemistry knows that H20 has 2 IR active modes, making sure it picks up a lot of radiation, namely IR. The remaining mode is Raman active, but its too confusing unless you've studied raman to explain what that means. Anyways, water has a very high specific heat capacity, i think its 4.18Joules/gram to raise the temp by 1C, or something, but dont quote me on the units. Anyway, again again im just using ballpark figures cos my notes are too far away, but air has a SHC of around 0.2Joules/gram, which means much MUCH less heat is required to heat air than water. This contributes to the trapping of LW radiation that the earth emits.

    Possibly though, the biggest factor that makes H20 a massive GHG is its IR absorbance bands. Again, i dont have a graph here, if someone else can help me out that would be great. But the earth as a blackbody radiates at (average) 288K (kelvin). this is in the IR region of the spectrum. There are graphs around that show this but basically H20 (and too a lesser but still important extent CO2) absorbs at almost the same wavelengths that the earth emits. What happens when this happens? well basically all the heat the earth sends out is trapped by H20 as it absorbs it, and is then re-emitted back to the earth's atmosphere and surface, causing heating. If i could put a graph up it would show that H20 has a greater part of its absorbance spectra in the blackbody curve of the Earth than any other GHG, making it the most efficient GHG.

    So taipan has explained that due to extra CO2 being pumped into the atm there is a positive feedback process putting more H20 into the atm. This would mean more clouds, as taipan has also said. But wait a minute, more clouds means more reflectance of solar radiation that SHOULD result in a net cooling effect. This should in turn cool down earth, and slow down the extra H20 going into the atm and everything would go back to normal. Naturally, as you can see, it aint that simple. We aint gonna stop pumping CO2 into the atm, so H20 is going to increase anyways. This is what im talking about their being too many processes for anyone to understand.

    Ok, ill leave it at that, but just a final point. The incoming and outgoing SW and LW radiation equate to the earth having a temperature of 254K. this is below freezing. Without a greenhouse effect we wouldnt be here.

    kris
     
    #4 Vermillion, Mar 27, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 11, 2013
  5. Taipan

    Taipan Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    Good post Vermillion. New things there to think about.

    I think i have some references to some of the things that you are talking about. Maybe tomorrow night, but ill reread this tomorrow.
     
  6. Ijay

    Ijay Hard Yards

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    Keep up the good posts fellas.
     
  7. filski

    filski Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    Vermillion - even though you've said it already in one way, for Taipans info - understand the effect of water vapour by breaking down some of the interactions.

    Temperature rises and more water vapour goes into the atmosphere. Clouds form and reflect solar radiation and atmosphere cools. Water vapour condenses. That particular feedback mechanism is roughly in equilbrium. It is reactive not causative. It's levels and effect in the atmosphere are a symptom of other forces. This to me is why in some respects water vapour seems to be ignored.

    Think of a set of sensitive scales that are balanced. The forces governing the level of water vapour in the atmosphere on either side. CO2 despite being far less abundant and effective is an additional and almost insignificant weight that is placed on one side of the scales. They begin to tip.

    As CO2 levels increase, the storage capacity of water vapour in the atmosphere rises due to increased temperature. Clouds form though many reasons, condensation of water vapour as the atmosphere reaches saturation point (100% RH) being one of them. If the temperature rises enough the water vapour remains in the atmosphere uncondensed (think of steam condensing in cooler air in winter but not in summer). Eventually a new saturation point is reached and clouds begin to form again - equilbrium but at a higher ambient temperature. We now have the combined GH effect of CO2 and water vapour storing heat energy.

    If we reverse the balance by removing the forcing mechanisms - the other GHG's - water vapour levels will decrease again. It is not purely that simple though of course as there are other aerosols with different absobtion abilities too.
     
  8. Vermillion

    Vermillion Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    yes Schaden, i understand this, but what no one can understand properly is all the interactions both directly and non-directly involving CO2 and WV that could possibly influence all of this.

    today, for example, we did some work on the Nitrogen Cycle. Now this cycle is governed in some respects by H20, as H20 is needed by plants and bacteria to fix the nitrogen. More H20 means they can fix more nitrogen, but then again this is also governed by how much Carbon is around for them to use aswell, not to mention temperature and altitude.

    So you see, its way to complex to really comprehend.

    Taipan - If you could post those graphs sometime that would be awesome, mine are all freehand drawing or sketches from computer printouts and dodgy lab experiments, hardly what you'd want to back up your statements with [​IMG]

    Interstingly enough, today i was doing some research for another project to do with uranium mining, and came across this rubbish article (http://www.wwf.org.au/news/n67/). it basically says we can cut ALL greenhouse emissions in australia by 50% by 2040. Fair enough. Next paragraph it says we can cut CO2 emissions by 50% in the next 36 years. So now ALL greenhouse gases are either CO2 or the one that we can cut by 50% is CO2. Just another example of inferior and biased reporting, something to watch out for when researching a topic like this one.

    anyways, gotta get back to some real research, but before that i think the posts above relatively explain H20 in the atmosphere and its efficieny as a GHG, so id say we could move on. I would propose that the next topic be the biggest sink on earth, the oceans, and their effect on the Carbon sink, as well as their photosynthetic effect, which of course releases O2 into the atmosphere. Of course a by-product of this is increased resipration which releases CO2, which as you shouhld all know now is a GHG.

    What might now be known is that to cope with the increased CO2 pumped into the atmosphere there has been an increase in the oceanic sink of carbon EG the oceans are taking up more carbon. They are not taking up enough though to cope with the extra thats being pumped into the atmosphere, so where does it go? i know, and when i get home tonight i will put the figures and facts up, but until then, have a think about it...where is there a 'missing sink' of carbon on earth?

    kris
     
    #8 Vermillion, Mar 28, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 11, 2013
  9. filski

    filski Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    Covered that one not long ago. [​IMG] Will be interesting to see your explanation of it.

    Having walked along the chalk cliffs in the UK, I now have a new appreciation for them.
     
    #9 filski, Mar 28, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 11, 2013
  10. Taipan

    Taipan Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    The role of clouds and water vapour play a crucial role in understanding this issue. The retention of heat within the atmosphere is mainly due to clouds. With water vapour accounting for up to 95% of GHG, it plays a crucial role.

    As Schaden pointed out above, clouds not only reflect heat back in but reflect heat out from the tops of clouds.

    Now some of the comments seem to make logical sense at first glance. CO2 causes greater amount of reflected heat back towards the planet. That causes temperatures to rise and in turn causes more clouds to form, returning more heat, but also reflecting more heat.

    So as rightly pointed out it is far more complex then that. The models dont factor in clouds due to their complexity.

    Just come across a paper by Randall 2003. Like to have a further read on how they are trying to deal with the issue of clouds in models.

    http://pubs.giss.nasa.gov/docs/2003/2003_RandallKrueger.pdf

    Earth's Annual Global Mean Energy Budget

    Kiehl, J. T. and Trenberth, K. E., 1997

    [​IMG]
     
    #10 Taipan, Mar 28, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 14, 2013
  11. Taipan

    Taipan Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    Ok interesting article. Basically identifying the problems of current models and there lack of sufficent and useabel data. What they are basically trying to do is to push forward with a new model concept called cloud system resolving models rather then the single column models.

    However fundermentally the models that they now have are not intergrated into the climate models, and those that attempt it are incredibly simplistic for what is the majority of the green house gases.

    Before we move off the greenhouse gas issue including water vapour, i came across Arrhenius work from 1903. This section is from Wikipedia and summarizes his position.

    "Greenhouse effect as cause for ice ages
    Svante Arrhenius developed a theory to explain the ice ages, and first formulated the idea that changes in the levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere could substantially alter the surface temperature through the greenhouse effect ("On the Influence of Carbonic Acid in the Air Upon the Temperature of the Ground", Philosophical Magazine 1896(41): 237-76). He was influenced by the work of others, including Joseph Fourier's argument that the earth's atmosphere acted like the glass of a hot-house. Arrhenius used the infrared observations of the moon by Frank Washington Very and Samuel Pierpont Langley at the Allegheny Observatory in Pittsburgh to calculate the absorption of CO2 and water vapour. Using the just published Stefan's law he formulated his greenhouse law. In it's original form, Arrhenius' greenhouse law reads as follows:

    if the quantity of carbonic acid increases in geometric progression, the augmentation of the temperature will increase nearly in arithmetic progression.
    Which is still valid in the simplified expression by Myhre et al(1998).

    ΔF = αln(C/C0)
    Arrhenius' high absorption values for CO2, however, met criticism by Knut Ångström in 1900, who published the first modern infrared spectrum of CO2 with two absorption bands. Arrhenius replied strongly in 1901 (Annalen der Physik), dismissing the critique altogether. He touched the subject briefly in a technical book titled Lehrbuch der kosmischen Physik (1903). He later wrote Världarnas utveckling (1906), German translation: Das Werden der Welten (1907), English translation: Worlds in the Making (1908) directed at a general audience, where the suggested that the human emission of CO2 would be strong enough to prevent the world from entering a new ice age, and that a warmer earth would be needed to feed the rapidly increasing population. From that, the hot-house theory gained more attention. Nevertheless, until about 1960, most scientists dismissed the hot-house / greenhouse effect as implausible for the cause of ice ages as Milutin Milankovitch had presented a mechanism using orbital changes of the earth.

    Arhenius estimated that a doubling of CO2 would cause a temperature rise of 5 degrees Celsius [1], recent values from IPCC place this value (the Climate sensitivity) at between 1.5 and 4.5 degrees. What is remarkable is that through a combination of skill and luck he came within a factor of two of the IPCC estimate. His calculations were important only in a qualitative way in showing that this was a significant effect. Arrhenius expected CO2 levels to rise at a rate given by emissions at his time. Since then, industrial carbon dioxide levels have risen at a much faster rate: Arrhenius expected CO2 doubling to take about 3000 years; it is now generally expected to take about a century."


    Now what i find concerning is that with all of the technology, all the data capture, all of the scientific breakthroughs of the last century all of the modelling that has been done especially in the last 15 years there is little difference bewteen the IPCC and what Arrhenius was saying 100 years ago.

    To put it another way. Arrhenius simply calculated the increase in temps based on a very simple model and excluding outside influences of the global circulation, the earths obital path and orientation wobbles and even volcano's he achieved what the IPCC has come up with the best technology on the world.

    To me it makes me raise a few eyebrows. Lets move on.

    Vermillion you wanted to have a look at the oceans and the missing carbon sink. Why dont we go there next.

    That is an interesting area for discussion.
     
  12. Vermillion

    Vermillion Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    ok, well sincere apoligies for the slow reply, but uni has built up like a freight train in the past week, but at taipan's request, i have put together something short and simple tonight.

    Simply, WE are the 'missing carbon sink', as in, there is a terrestrial/biospheric carbon sink, which takes up the excess carbon that put the carbon cycle out of balance. Of course the one set of lecture notes ive misplaced are the ones about this topic, obviously, but i will get a printout tomorrow and show this graphically.

    sorry for the crap posts at the moment, when i get organised i WILL do a better effort.

    kris
     
  13. Taipan

    Taipan Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    So your saying that all humans/biological entities are absorbing additional carbon into there bodies or because of all the additional people in the world in the last 50 years, that the volume of body mass/carbon based life forms have used the additional carbon.

    Hmmm interesting thought. Wonder what the numbers look like?

    We wont let this topic die. If nobody else posts then we will wait for you to post up some input into carbon sinks, an interesting and topical subject! Studies come first.
     
  14. dmz

    dmz More cheeeese Gromit Ski Pass: Gold

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    #14 dmz, Apr 5, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 14, 2013
  15. Vermillion

    Vermillion Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    Yes and No Taipan. Yes there are more people on earth so more carbon in them, so that is a sort of sink. What i was really trying to hammer home is the plants themselves. We have more plants/crops these days, and we do more land management. Remember trees that are growing use a hell of a lot more carbon than mature trees. While it is true that we cut down a lot of trees and burn a lot sending CO2 into the atmosphere, there is still more CO2 being 'sunk' into the terrestrial sphere, resulting in a NET sink. This accounts for the excess CO2 in the atmosphere. Whether or not this sink will continue to grow, and how much it will grow, is still open to massive discussion.

    :cheers:

    kris
     
  16. Taipan

    Taipan Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    DMZ how much of that report have you got through? Ive read sections, but to discuss this topic properly you really need to not only read that but have an extended reading list.

    Oh well winter is coming so plenty of time yet. :thumbs:
     
    #16 Taipan, Apr 6, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 17, 2013
  17. HiLo

    HiLo Old n' Crusty

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    No we don't.


    But a whole old growth tree is already storing a lot of carbon. I don't understand your logic.
     
    #17 HiLo, Apr 6, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 25, 2013
  18. Vermillion

    Vermillion Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    Hilo - You are wrong. Accept it. Please. Dont make me explain it to you.

    Go and do some reading, then come back here when u actually know what you're talking about.

    Here's a hint... photosynthesis [​IMG]

    good luck.
     
    #18 Vermillion, Apr 6, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 11, 2013
  19. Vermillion

    Vermillion Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    ok, here's the deal (no thanks to hilo stuffing me up), but anyways, the missing carbon sink...(taipan, i hope will back me up here [​IMG] ) Taipan, if you have been able to get those diagrams from the pdf, now would be a great time to post them, to go along with this post. Until then this is all text and no images.

    ok, so, until humans came along, the Carbon (C) cycle was in balance between all the spheres (mainly Hydro, Atmos and bio). Anyways, the most accepted numbers for the human impact are below:
    EXTRA GOING INTO ATMOSPHERE:
    Fossil Burning - 5.3X10^15 grams
    Destruction of Land - 0.6-2.6x10^15 grams
    TOTAL = 5.9-7.9x10^15 grams going into the atmosphere

    Now, there is extra being taken up by both the atmosphere (re rising CO2 concentrations), and by the oceans, and their numbers are:
    EXTRA FOUND IN:
    Atmosphere - 3x10^15 grams
    Oceans - 1.6-2.4x10^15 grams
    TOTAL = 4.6-5.4x10^15 grams

    BUT, this leaves an estimated 2x10^15 grams of carbon somewhere, and yes, it HAS to go somewhere, obviously. So where does it go?

    To find out where it goes involved a complex process, which included looking at the different isotopes of Carbon. There are 7 isotopes of carbon (C10-C16), and there are 2 stable ones, 12C and 13C.

    This is important because plants discriminate between 12C (the most abundant) and 13C, through diffusion. Hence they become depleted in 13C. So you can measure this to find if they are taking up more C or not.

    Then there is 14C, which is formed in the upper atmosphere ONLY, through a neutron reaction of 14N and cosmic radiation. Therefore no rocks or fossil fuels will contain 14C. This again is important in the measurement process.

    OK, now to the good parts, since we've done some background information.

    Initially, researchers thought that deforestation and biomass burning was adding significantly to CO2 emission. Oceans were thought to be the major sink of Carbon. Short and simply, now it is thought the biosphere is a NET SINK for Carbon, and there are some tables and graphs to prove this, and some more information.

    ok, so basically next is a lot of crap about different isotopes which ive explained above, but basically there is a ratio of 14C/12C in the atmosphere, and the ratio is measured over time to find how much dilution is occuring. Research has found that dilution is NOT occuring as more 12C is being added, and that means that something else is taking up the 12C in atmosphere, or there is another sink of carbon.

    Ok, so now, its accepted that the anthropogenic effect is more pronounced in the northern hemisphere. (cue graph from taipan [​IMG] ). So if you graphed CO2 across the globe, u would expect it to difuse from the northern hemisphere in a North to South gradient of 4-5ppm CO2, as a constant due to atmospheric conditions. THIS DOES NOT HAPPEN. Therefore, there is a sink of carbon in the Northern Hemisphere, but where?

    Well, inventory records show that there is an uptake in US ecosystems of 0.15-0.35 Pg C/year, or 10-30% of the total US fossil fuel emissions, which is quite a bit. (again cue another graph from taipan).

    So, you get the following (taken from the IPCC 2001 TAR).
    TERRESTRIAL C SINK ESTIMATES:
    Atmospheric Increase - 3.2 +/- 0.1
    Fossil Fuels - 6.3 +/- 0.4
    Ocean-Atmosphere Flux - -1.7 +/- 0.5
    Land-Atmosphere Flux* - -1.4 +/- 0.7
    * Partitioned as:
    Land use change - 1.7
    Residual Terrestrial Sink - -1.9 <--This is where the sink is

    So, there are a few possible mechanisms for this terrestrial carbon sink:
    INDIRECT HUMAN EFFECTS:
    CO2 Fertilisation
    Nitrogen Fertilisation
    Climate Change
    Sediment Burial

    DIRECT HUMAN EFFECTS:
    Forest re-growth and abandoned croplands
    Fire Supression
    Improved Agriculture Practices
    Woody Encroachment and forest thickening

    So now you have some of the effects and some explanation, i hope ive put u in your place by now hilo.

    Ok, this post is getting too long, so ill start another one with the explanations of the effects.

    :cheers:

    kris
     
    #19 Vermillion, Apr 6, 2006
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  20. Vermillion

    Vermillion Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    ok, here goes the next part. this will describe the reasoning for the effects of the sink.

    FOREST RE-GROWTH OF ABANDONED CROPS:
    This is generally to do with studies in the US, but 96% of the sink is contributed by forest regrowth after crop abandonment, reduced harvesting, and fire supression activities.

    The remaining 4% is attributed to: Increasing CO2, Nitrogen Deposition and climate change. All of these increase the amount of C in forest regrowth.

    Fire supression is another good one. As u can appreciate, much CO2 is released into the atmosphere with a fire, and limiting this results in more staying in the biosphere. Of course this has its downsides when a big one breaks out.

    Improved agricultural practices are another big one. In the US and most western countries, better farming practices result in MUCH more Soil Organic Carbon being put back into the soil. Initally, when farming started, no one gave a damn about the soil, and when it turned crap, they went somewhere else. It went crap because there was no organic carbon in the soil to provide growth and nutrients for the organisms in the soil. In the US, SOC has been restored to 75-90% of pre-cultivation methods over the last 100 years, so its heading in the right direction. Other, less developed countries...well its the other way round unfortunately.

    Now, the sink itself, what will happen to it in the future? Here are some hypothesis, and simply, no one knows the answer:
    - Permanent Sink - Stays the same level
    - Increasing Sink - more and more uptake of C into the biosphere, like a log graph
    - Saturated sink - gets to a certain point and thats all it can take
    - It might disappear - You never know [​IMG]

    There is a point to note about the limit of the sink. Nutrients, including metals, Phosphorus, Nitrogen and most importantly, WATER, are limiting factors. C is relatively abundant compared to these, and without them the sink cannot grow. This is another fact to consider.

    And thats it. You suckers better have bloody enjoyed it, i just spent 90mins putting that together from notes i have. Hope that provides some explanation. Thank god ive finished though [​IMG]

    :cheers:

    kris
     
    #20 Vermillion, Apr 6, 2006
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  21. Taipan

    Taipan Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    Ok Vermillion. Got the pdf file. Occasional problems with headers, however the source notes are particularly interesting and legible. Im working on getting them up.
     
  22. Vermillion

    Vermillion Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    awesome :cheers:
     
  23. HiLo

    HiLo Old n' Crusty

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    Please explain how anything we do now is better than not removing old growth forests in the first place.
     
    #23 HiLo, Apr 6, 2006
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  24. Taipan

    Taipan Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    Vermillion here are those slides that you sent me. Ive uploaded them as jpg's so we can look at them.

    Please repost your notes around the individual pages.

    Please note. Some pages cam through a little scrambled. In particular the headings. This doesnt detract from the lecture which is very interesting.


    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    #24 Taipan, Apr 6, 2006
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  25. Vermillion

    Vermillion Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    Because growing trees take up more carbon than mature trees u twit. Have a look at the posts, it says THICKENING of forest. Also by using modern farming techniques more carbon is being put back into the soil resulting in an increased SOC (soil organic carbon). Didnt u read any of my post??? :doh: to u.
     
    #25 Vermillion, Apr 6, 2006
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  26. Vermillion

    Vermillion Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    Taipan - You are a DEADSET legend. But i dont really wanna re-type those nots unless i have to, maybe i could edit the post referring to the relevant pages of the lecture instead [​IMG] save me some time.
     
    #26 Vermillion, Apr 6, 2006
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  27. HiLo

    HiLo Old n' Crusty

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    Even if true, that's merely a typical short term view.
     
  28. Vermillion

    Vermillion Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    you're kidding right?

    where do u suppose the missing carbon goes then? it HAS to go somewhere, so im waiting for your explanation.
     
  29. HiLo

    HiLo Old n' Crusty

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    The earlier comments are too difficult to read now. See earlier comments re screen width. Quantity is no replacement for quality.
     
  30. Vermillion

    Vermillion Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    hilo - at the end of my posts i noted that no one knows the extent or the future of this sink. have a look at the lecture slides for a graphical description of this also. my personal view is one of saturation.

    its a sink, thats the fact.
     
  31. Taipan

    Taipan Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    That must have been a very interesting lecture to sit through. I like your lecturers tone on this.

    New information and research.
    A good degree of peer review and query of previously obtained results.
    Acknowledgement that there is still a lot of uncertainty in certain areas.
    New proposed hypothesis which would require more research.

    Correct me if i get this wrong. From reading the slides, it appears that the USA is now a net CO2 sink because of improved forestry and agricultural practices.


    [​IMG]

    That is really quiet incredable and flies in the face of what many believe.

    Looking at those increasing, we can see china and russia appear to be the countries with the larger increase to CO2.
     
    #31 Taipan, Apr 6, 2006
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  32. Sandy

    Sandy Dark Sith Lord of the Pool Room Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    That's enough jousting you guys. (Vermillion & HiLo)

    Keep it nice or I will delete your posts.
     
  33. Taipan

    Taipan Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    Vermillion just come back to the source topic.

    Hopefully Hilo may post sensable questions, and then follow up with further enquiries.

    Id hate to see this thread be unnecesarily derailed from what is developing as an excellent, and thought provoking discussion.
     
  34. Vermillion

    Vermillion Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    Fair enough taipan and sandy, a couple of bundys didnt help there [​IMG]

    yes, you are right taipan, the US is a NET SINK, due to their new-age if u would like, farming techniques, and their re-distribution of SOC. If the lesser developed countries adopted the same approach, then this effect would be more pronounced.

    But you have to remember that most of this research has only been conducted in the US, so who knows what the effects are in other western countries (europe, australia etc...).

    Of course this sink will end, or level out at some point, but the fact remains that all the Carbon needs to go somewhere, and fossil fuels ARE NOT the major sink of carbon, that belongs to the sediments and rocks. which arent valuble to us, really.

    thats enough for me tonight, we'll continue this on the weekend...

    :cheers:

    kris
     
    #34 Vermillion, Apr 6, 2006
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  35. daj

    daj First Runs

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    Ummm... so all those climate scientists are wrong, CSIRO is wrong, the Bureau of Meteorology is wrong, all the world's governments who accept the 1000s of pages written by the IPCC based on the science literature are wrong, and its just a great big coincidence that 100 years ago it was predicted that global warming would happen as a result of the enhanced greenhouse effect, and the model runs in the 1950s by MIT and NOAA in the 1970s & 1980s which predicted the subsequent warming were correct. I'm not sure how we deal with the fact that the current rate of warming is nearly 10 times that which occured at the end of the last glacial maximum (ie extremely fast), and, well the fact that the sun has slightly cooled since 1950 (which should have lead to a cooling).. prehaps we should just ignore these conveniences.

    Hate to say it Vermillion but you don't pass the giggle test... shame climate change ain't so funny. Suggest you go away and do some science based reading before you fill this page with further sillingness.

    David

    BTW, those who think small concentrations can't have a big effect need to remember that physics works in degrees kelvin not degrees celcius. 1% more greenhouse means.. 1% of about 300K (not 1% of 10 or 20C, depending on where you live).
     
    #35 daj, Apr 7, 2006
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  36. HiLo

    HiLo Old n' Crusty

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    Books.

    That's a serious answer.

    With old growth forests, it all depends what you do with the timber. If all you do is burn it, you end up with with no better than a zero game in the long term. If you re-use it, it paper products, housing, other buildings, plus many other things I can't think of on a Friday morning, etc, you can end up in the green, as it were.

    This isn't a simple game. [​IMG]
     
    #36 HiLo, Apr 7, 2006
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  37. Taipan

    Taipan Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    Daj i hope you can contribute to this thread. Your position is the official position for many governments around the world.

    However there are tens of thousands of scientists who disagree with the official line.

    A review of the research literature concerning the environmental consequences of increased levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide leads to the conclusion that increases during the 20th Century have produced no deleterious effects upon global weather, climate, or temperature. Increased carbon dioxide has, however, markedly increased plant growth rates. Predictions of harmful climatic effects due to future increases in minor greenhouse gases like CO2 are in error and do not conform to current experimental knowledge.

    Here is an explanation of those who have signed the petition.

    Explanation


    Listed below are 17,200 of the initial signers

    During the past 2 years, more than 17,100 basic and applied American scientists, two-thirds with advanced degrees, have signed the Global Warming Petition.
    Signers of this petition so far include 2,660 physicists, geophysicists, climatologists, meteorologists, oceanographers, and environmental scientists (select this link for a listing of these individuals) who are especially well qualified to evaluate the effects of carbon dioxide on the Earth's atmosphere and climate.

    Signers of this petition also include 5,017 scientists whose fields of specialization in chemistry, biochemistry, biology, and other life sciences (select this link for a listing of these individuals) make them especially well qualified to evaluate the effects of carbon dioxide upon the Earth's plant and animal life.

    Nearly all of the initial 17,100 scientist signers have technical training suitable for the evaluation of the relevant research data, and many are trained in related fields. In addition to these 17,100, approximately 2,400 individuals have signed the petition who are trained in fields other than science or whose field of specialization was not specified on their returned petition.

    Of the 19,700 signatures that the project has received in total so far, 17,800 have been independently verified and the other 1,900 have not yet been independently verified. Of those signers holding the degree of PhD, 95% have now been independently verified. One name that was sent in by enviro pranksters, Geri Halliwell, PhD, has been eliminated. Several names, such as Perry Mason and Robert Byrd are still on the list even though enviro press reports have ridiculed their identity with the names of famous personalities. They are actual signers. Perry Mason, for example, is a PhD Chemist.

    The costs of this petition project have been paid entirely by private donations. No industrial funding or money from sources within the coal, oil, natural gas or related industries has been utilized. The petition's organizers, who include some faculty members and staff of the Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine, do not otherwise receive funds from such sources. The Institute itself has no such funding. Also, no funds of tax-exempt organizations have been used for this project.

    The signatures and the text of the petition stand alone and speak for themselves. These scientists have signed this specific document. They are not associated with any particular organization. Their signatures represent a strong statement about this important issue by many of the best scientific minds in the United States.

    This project is titled "Petition Project" and uses a mailing address of its own because the organizers desired an independent, individual opinion from each scientist based on the scientific issues involved - without any implied endorsements of individuals, groups, or institutions.

    The remainder of the initial signers and all new signers will be added to these lists as data entry is completed.



    The scientific Petition

    Are they right? Maybe, maybe not.

    But let us continue on with an interesting discussion and you never know Daj something new may be thrown on the table.
     
    #37 Taipan, Apr 7, 2006
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  38. daj

    daj First Runs

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    This paragraph is a strawman and a scam. Surely the question is... is the enhanced greenhouse effect the driver for most if not all of the observed warming of the last century. The scientific literature as summarised by the IPCC provided a very clear yes to this question.

    There are a number of like petitions around, many of which have been dressed up to look like official society positions. This is a garbage way to proceed with science... Do we vote on whether smoking causes cancer? CFC lead to the destruction of Ozone? etc etc. No, we ask the scientist, and we most certainly do not have popularity contest whose results can be influenced by strawman questions and the equivalent of push polling.

    Meanwhile, if you look at opinion polls you find (typically), about 50% of people believe that global warming might be natural. This means in theory that about 10 million Australians might support a petition rejecting anthropogenic climate change if you had a means for motivating them to do so.

    OK, enough of a rant....

    David
     
    #38 daj, Apr 7, 2006
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  39. daj

    daj First Runs

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    #39 daj, Apr 7, 2006
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  40. Vermillion

    Vermillion Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

     
    #40 Vermillion, Apr 7, 2006
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  41. daj

    daj First Runs

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    If you were taught to have a closed mind, then your lecturer or teacher should be fired.

    I can be quite sure that your views would not have been taught by anyone with a background in climate at an Australian University.

    David
     
    #41 daj, Apr 7, 2006
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  42. Sandy

    Sandy Dark Sith Lord of the Pool Room Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    Settle down everyone.....
     
  43. Taipan

    Taipan Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    Unfortunately Daj the IPCCC also ignores the no 1 greenhouse gas. Water Vapour. It also ignores the three other actual major causes to both short and long term climate variation.

    Changes to the earths oribt around the sun,
    Changes in Solar activity by the sun
    and the influence of volcanic activity on short term temperature variations.

    As far as global warming goes, increase in CO2 came a distant 4th.

    But thats not what you hear fron the IPCC.

    I ignore opinion polls because this an issue of science not a popularity contest.

    Daj it sounds like your pretty comfortable with your position. Surely rather then being antagonistic, you can contribute and proove scientifically where we have gone wrong.
     
  44. Vermillion

    Vermillion Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    That is the biggest insult.

    Not only is he a professor at monash university, he is the head of the climatology department. He compiled those notes himself. He did a lot of those studies in the US, alaska and northern australia. He is also a member of a green's party, so there is probably a slight bias towards the conservative side of things, if anything.

    Sandy, im not calming down when somebody insults the whole department at a university and believes they are above them. Its a ridiculous statement, and i hope you can see why i refuse to contribute anything further to this topic. This is the second time Daj has attacked me over this topic.
     
    #44 Vermillion, Apr 7, 2006
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  45. HiLo

    HiLo Old n' Crusty

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    [​IMG]

    I have to laugh at the suggestion that Green means conservative. We really are playing with words here. [​IMG]
     
    #45 HiLo, Apr 7, 2006
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  46. daj

    daj First Runs

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    I'm bailing out as I've no interest in a slanging match.

    You may not like being "flamed" but to suggest that climate change science is a scam wears very thin.

    David
     
    #46 daj, Apr 8, 2006
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  47. Sandy

    Sandy Dark Sith Lord of the Pool Room Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    You need to calm down by attacking the argument, not the person.
    Attack the person and I will delete it. It's THAT simple.
    Keep posting BTW.
     
    #47 Sandy, Apr 8, 2006
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  48. Sandy

    Sandy Dark Sith Lord of the Pool Room Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    You need to calm down by attacking the argument, not the person.
    Attack the person and I will delete it. It's THAT simple.
    Keep posting BTW.
     
    #48 Sandy, Apr 8, 2006
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  49. Taipan

    Taipan Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    Id like to see the debate on the science also. I hope everybody will return to this discussion.

    If your so sure about your position proove your position.

    Yes this is a subject with a wide variety of beliefs. Some based on science, some based on politics, some based on what people heard at the coffee shop or pub and others based on miss walters undergarments flapping on the line at no 27 (yes it is rediculous but their are some wacky ideas out there)

    Daj and DMZ many scientists are appalled by the IPCC's last report which ignored many major contributing factors to climate change and in its summary came to a definite conclusion.

    Ive shown you that many other scientists disagree. Daj if you are a scientist, then many of the articles that are presented, and information that is presented should allow you to either increase your knowledge, or allow you to show where later studies have shown alternative outcomes.
     
  50. HiLo

    HiLo Old n' Crusty

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    Re: "The reality of climate change".

    I'd like to see the use of better words than "many" (scientists/articles, whatever). It's not very scientific.