12 September, 2011

Climate Change Is Real, of Course

Given our knowledge of physics, it is not just true, but trivially and obviously true that humans cause the climate to change.
But then so do ants cause climate change, and their arch rivals the aardvarks.  As do yellow perch and their meals the nightcrawlers.  Any species that moves or engages in respiration, or in eructation after a good meal, changes the climate.
It would be impossible for them not to.  Why?  Because any move through the atmosphere changes its state, just as any exchange of gases changes the state, and any change of state of the atmosphere is a change of climate.  And that is that. Humans, ants, and every other damn creature cause the climate to change.
The only question is how much?  A worm wiggling across the surface of a sidewalk after a rainstorm is not moving fast, and thus not causing large changes of state of the atmosphere.  But it’s not as simple as that: the birds who dive bomb the worms cause larger changes, changes that would not have taken place had the worms not been there.
And when the worm begins to rot after you squish it, its dissolving body changes the chemical composition of the atmosphere, and changes it in a different way than if it were processed through the gut of a robin.
Don’t scoff!  We read that the biomass of worms outweighs that of humans.  Worms are unimaginably important critters, aerating—get it?—soil, feeding fish, and crawling trillions of miles.  How can we say authoritatively the exact effect worms have on climate?  We cannot, not exactly; but perhaps we can approximate it.  [...]
Humans and worms do cause the weather to change, even cause it to change measurably; thus they also cause the average of the weather—the climate—to change measurably.  For instance, your author lives on a small island upon which is dumped a great, tangled mass of concrete, through which scurry motorized vehicles, rats, cockroaches, and even people.  These static and movable objects cause great changes in the weather, and thus in its average.
Humans, on the island and off, also pump various gases and other effluvia into the atmosphere.  These gases also cause changes in the weather, thus climate.  So much is indisputable.
What is disputable is how much.  We can ask—it is an intelligible question—what the weather (thus climate) would be like on the small island given the concrete, vermin, and people were removed.  We might cobble together a mixed physical-statistical model which gives an answer.  But the answer won’t necessarily be the right answer.  And we’ll never be able to tell if it’s right or wrong because we’ll never be able to shift all that stuff off the isle to check.  [...]

02 September, 2011

Tangled Webs

At The Resilient Earth, in “Climate Science’s Tangled Web”, Doug L. Hoffman reports that bogus reports of global warming from alleged scientists continue:
Recent days have seen a number of announcements about our changing climate.  As it turns out, Arctic ice is rebounding, sea levels are dropping and things just are not going according to the IPCC's plan for catastrophic global warming.  Faced with reversal after reversal, it might seem logical for mainstream climate scientists to admit that they are wrong, that global warming is not taking place at a breakneck pace, but this has not happened.  Instead, climate change apologists are weaving a tangled web of excuses—hot is cold, wet is dry, up is down.  No matter what happens to the world we live in, the root cause according to the doomsayers is always the same:  it’s always global warming’s fault.
Sea level rise due to global warming has been a topic of intense debate for years.  While the minuscule rise of the world's oceans has been fairly steady for most of the last 20 years, every once in a while sea levels do something unexpected.  In the past two decades global sea levels increased at a rate of roughly 0.12 inches a year, compared to 0.07 inches from 1961 to 2003, according to satellite data.  A recent study of sea levels, as measured by tide gauges, suggested the rate of ocean rise has declined in the past decade around Australia and New Zealand.
See also  Bill Muehlenberg, at Quadrant Online, on “The growing desperation of the climate alarmists”:
You can always tell when real science has long ago given way to hysteria and agenda setting when the arguments being dragged out become more and more bizarre.  Less and less science is offered, and instead we get all sorts of blatant moonbattery.
We have had several prime examples of this lately.  Consider a major player in all this, Al Gore.  He has gotten so desperate to push his whacko agenda that he is now saying that climate change skeptics are basically in the same camp as racists.
Just as we had to fight the ugly racists in the past, Gore says we need to do the same with those ugly climate change skeptics today.  And we are supposed to embrace the alarmists as the epitome of rationality and science?  Sorry Al, but I don’t have enough faith to be a true believer like you are.
Then we have the case of an Australian true believer who has actually said we can link climate change to mental illness!  Yes you heard me right.  An ABC report puts it this way: “A report has been released that draws a direct link between inaction on climate change and long-term social and mental health problems.  [...]
I suppose it is only a matter of time now before scientists will be telling us that climate change is responsible for migraines, impotence, and the common cold.  Indeed, they will soon inform us that the London riots were due to climate change.
 A recent song:
Climate Change Is Responsible for All the Things That Have Ever Gone Wrong

Polar bears numbers may be on the rise,
we know what to blame whenever one dies.
See rivers inundate each sun-baked plain
for global warming brings more and less rain;
farms will be barren or covered with mud
as all crops suffer from a drought or flood;
more dearth, devastation, much more death—
we poison the world with every breath.
    Climate change is responsible for
    all the things that have ever gone wrong.
We may see fewer storms or maybe more
then thirsty nations will be stirred to war.
Give me liberty or give me the rope
for man has nothing when he has no hope
    Climate change is responsible for
    all the things that have ever gone wrong.
You’ll hear the eloquent wind in the trees:
“our weather will spread more nasty disease.”
Across the mountains see a want of snow;
and early this morning I stubbed my toe.

    Climate change is responsible for
    all the things that have ever gone wrong:–
    woeful standards in atrocious schools,
    everyone in a ship of fools,
    the London riots, the Gillard coup,
    and man’s first disobedience too,
    the fire at Pharos, all modern wars,
    the rise and fall of the dinosaurs,
    the wall street crashes, and poor TV—
    all the bad things that ever can be.
    Climate change is responsible for

    all the things that have ever gone wrong.