Global Warming...really our fault?

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by old_gun, Feb 2, 2007.

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  1. A group of 2000-2500 eminent scientist now believe its apparently 90% certain that the responsibility for global warming now lies with the human race, and this after a mere 6 years research.

    "Well no sh*t Sherlock"

    How long and at what cost did it take these nitwits to come up with that one.....and only 90% certain!!

    Is this me being a smartarrse or did we all know this?
     
  2. There are also a lot of 'eminent' scientists out there who disagree. They cite unusually high solar activity as the cause.

    I've also seen some figures showing that 95% of all CO2 emmisions are natural causes i.e. the general CO2 emissions from the gazillions of life forms on earth (breathing). It is also worth noting that one medium sized volcanic eruption apparently pushes 10 years worth of human CO2 into the atmosphere.

    I'm still undecided but I suppose we might aswell cut down our emissions - just in case.
     
  3. Actually the predominant gas exuded from volcanoes is water - 90% of it. A good deal of CO2 is emitted from natural sources, but it does so in equillibrium with CO2 sinks. Adding more puts it out of balance, and the stuff sits in the atmosphere happily re-radiating IR energy back at us.

    The people at the IPCC have to be careful with their language so that the politicians don't get confused - they cannot say anything with certainty - much of it is based on probabalistic forecasts, so must give confidence intervals. The more data the greater the confidence, which is why each progressive iteration of the Report becomes more robust.

    IMHO, I trust the stuff about the present state and how we got here. Not so sure about the future prediction stuff, but given that CO2 has an atmospheric lifetime of 50 years it ain't going away soon, no matter what we do.
     
  4. And go back 500 years or so, we burn people at the stake for refuting the scientific and theological "certainty" that the Earth is flat.

    There was even Newsnight's "Ethical Man" on the lunchtime news explaining that he's gone vegan because we have to be aware of the impact all our activities have. As he pointed out (unfortunately, they lost the report footage where he reported it) cows fart methane and that's terrible for Global Warming. Presumeably he feels we should stop eating them and exterminate the entire Bovine population instead?

    I'm not suggesting that reducing emmissions is a bad thing, but there seems to be a lot of questions I'd personally still like answered before accepting blame for the End of The World.

    Given that it's been a "popular" theory for so long, how much of the reviewed evidence really came from genuinely impartial research?

    Given the power of the global Oil Industry, how tempting is it, in "research", to find fault with them?

    And how politically expedient?

    One other quote from the lunch news - apparently "the harmful greenhouse emissions from our factories is now at it's highest level for the past 600000 years". Well, Duh!!!!!
     
  5. ugly

    ugly LE Moderator

    It wasnt me I didnt do it!
     
  6. Have a look here for a good discussion of the IPCC report (well, actually the summary for policy makers) released today
     
  7. Well - on the basis that the official (govt sponsered) pre-eminent scientists from the worlds leading countries came up with this 90% figure, I would tend to defer to their expertise. If you want to know about war-fighting ask a soldier, if you want to know about global warming ask this bunch, they know more about this than any collective of tree-huggers or US SUV Dealers.

    And its not our fault - best estimate is that Global CO2 production first exceeded the global capacity to deal with it in the 1950's - its the fault of our grand-parent's......

    Ratcatcher
     
  8. There is a far bigger methane threat than that from cows.
    Organisms in soil live and die and give off methane.

    All across Siberia the land has been under a permafrost coat for thousands of years. Under that coat of frozen earth what in effect have become methane fields have built up.
    Now the permafrost is melting across thousands of square miles releasing the methane into the atmosphere.
     
  9. That's only part of the (potential) problem. More on Methane hydrates at:

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php?p=227
     
  10. Ratcatcher,
    It was f'ucking tree huggers who were banging on about global warming in the first place years ago. Heard of Green Peace or Friends of Earth at all?
    Lots of them had read Silent Spring by Rachel Carson published in the early sixties.
     
  11. Oracle,
    thanks for the long but interesting link
     
  12. The problem with the science of global warming is that there is no definitive proof. The planet throughout its history has had warm and cool periods. The group of scientists in question have arrived at a consensus however anyone familiar with science is that a consensus isnt proof of anything. The scientists that support global warming earn their livelihood by subscribing to the theory, nothing wrong with that except that there needs to be disclosure. I remember in the 60's and early 70's the prevailing theory was that the planet was entering a cooling period. I susbscribe to the thesis that short of nuclear war there is little that we can do to the planet that mother nature cannot undue. Its kind of arrogant to think that we as humans have more power than the forces of nature. We cannot even control the weather much less predict it.
     
  13. Tomahawk,
    Mother nature will undo anything we do alright. But it might also undo us who caused the problems in the first place.
     
  14. That's deep.

    (personally I put it down to the Cold War Army. All that standing about on smoke breaks).