Reply To: Climate, the science, politics, economics and anything else


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#75706
Clark

I intend to be in London with Extinction Rebellion on August 23:

Climate change must be considered integrally with destruction of biodiversity; the largest living structure on Earth, the Great Barrier Reef, is already half dead, and that die-off all occurred in recent decades. It is well worth reading the article at the third link of ET’s Moon of Alabama article:

https://theconversation.com/climate-scientists-concept-of-net-zero-is-a-dangerous-trap-157368

Currently, the two most efficient biofuels are sugarcane for bioethanol and palm oil for biodiesel – both grown in the tropics. Endless rows of such fast growing monoculture trees or other bioenergy crops harvested at frequent intervals devastate biodiversity.

– It has been estimated that BECCS [Bioenergy Carbon Capture and Storage – a major requirement of the Paris 2 degree scenarios] would demand between 0.4 and 1.2 billion hectares of land. That’s 25% to 80% of all the land currently under cultivation. How will that be achieved at the same time as feeding 8-10 billion people around the middle of the century or without destroying native vegetation and biodiversity?

It is worth remembering that the struggle to stop emissions is also the struggle against war and propaganda – all three are one and the same. The wars are almost entirely for control over hydrocarbon resources, and the US military is the single organisation with the greatest emission on Earth.

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“One very current topic that appears under-represented here is climate”

Craig’s blog has always attracted a lot of conspiracy theorists, as you, ET, will have noticed regarding covid. Any mention of climate change on the main threads tends to provoke a lot of climate change denial that derails legitimate discussion of Craig’s posts, so moderators quickly delete it before it gets out of hand. Denial is likely to be posted on this thread too, so here are a few of the most often needed refutations:

  • The arctic ice is rapidly melting away; at the current rate of loss summer sea ice will fall to zero between ten and thirty-five years from now. This cannot be fake; dozens of passenger aircraft crews overfly the Arctic every day, and shipping companies and fossil fuel companies are investing in the new shipping lanes and oilfields that are becoming accessible. Diminishing ice conclusively proves that the world is accumulating additional heat. The same is true of sea level rise; it could not be happening without additional heat.
  • The previous point shows that climate change is NOT merely a matter of computer modelling. Simple, direct observation proves that climate change is happening right now, and has been for decades.
  • One of the strongest tests of the soundness of a scientific theory is its ability to predict. In 1988 James Hansen testified to the US government that global warming had begun. Climate science predicted global warming, and that prediction has been thoroughly confirmed in a host of different ways. Claims that in the 1960s climate science was predicting an ice age are merely an urban myth, as has been demonstrated by systematic reviews of the scientific literature.
  • Beware statements such as “3 centigrade increase by the end of this century“. Any increase above 2 centigrade this century will not flatten out until around 2300, at a considerably higher level.
  • “The climate has always changed” – Untrue. The climate has changed before, usually sporadically, but with long periods of relative stability in between. It has never changed nearly as fast as carbon dioxide and temperature are rising now. The whole of civilisation has arisen since the last ice age, and would collapse with any comparable change in climate. The climate 30 million years ago, or just 3 million years ago, is in no way relevant to civilisation’s current imminent danger. Here is a nice little cartoon illustration to provide perspective.
  • “Two degrees increase is insignificant” – Well the last ice age was only four degrees colder, and it brought the polar ice as far south as where New York now is. Boston’s location was covered by a mile of ice.
  • “Increase in atmospheric CO2 concentration is caused by temperature increase, not vice versa” – The first statement is true, but the second is false because each causes the other. That is always the case for any system which displays positive feedback.
  • “Go protest in China” – China indeed produces the most emissions now, but

    (1)  with 17% of the world’s population, China’s per capita emissions are well below the USA’s;

    (2)  Considering historical emissions, China still has a long way to go before catching up with the USA and Europe;

    (3)  Much of China’s emissions come from producing all the stuff us richer nations buy from there; and

    (4)  Around 15% of all investment in fossil fuel extraction comes from the City of London.

There are bound to be some that I have forgotten; the fossil fuel companies have funded reams of such nonsense.

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