Global Warming and SF

It would be reasonably simple and cheap (by national standards, not individual) to build a large scale solar distillery in the Sahara. Assuming that there were no political problems and minimum corruption, neither of which situations being very likely. In fact it could be done on a high manpower, low tech basis, wave power to pump seawater up a small mountain, then run it through a sort of polytunnel system, going hundreds of kilometres to a salt lake in the interior. Probably have to blast out the lake (nuclear?) and build the mountain, but most of the path is straight loops and transparent sheeting. Can be enlarged, not indefinitely but up to hundreds of thousands of litres a day with no difficulty, probably millions. (I did research for a Sahara reafforestation project, but I was mainly concerned with increasing rainfall, slowing runoff and getting rid of goats; this was a sideline).
That is exactly the problem with Hansen's model. He is programming in his personal bias and then changing the data to fit his expectations rather than changing his model to better predict what the data shows. He is letting his activism trump the actual results.
Hansen is only one man, and there are many climate scientists working on predictive models. The results are broadly similar, and clear enough to convince the vast majority of climate scientists.

I agree with your points about our agricultural structure. Is it not the answer to move to crops that have been engineered to be drought resistant? To start encouraging people to move from areas that will soon become problematic ? I still say investing in desalinization plants to make them more cost effective would be the greatest benefit in the short term.
Yes, genetic engineering of crops to make them drought resistant comes into Part 3, to be posted in due course!

Desalinisation has two problems: at present it's very expensive in terms of fuel use (not what's wanted), and the salt that's removed has to go somewhere. At the moment it tends to be pumped back into the sea, but that's not a long-term solution if done on a large scale because the sea's ecosystem will get damaged. [edit to add - just noticed that Nik made the same point]
Funny thing is - I spoke to the head gardner of Sheffield Park (one of those parks set down by Capability Brown) and he told me that the world is actually going through a cold period and this would go on for a goodly length of time. Apparently they can tell this from the reaction of different plants/trees.
Funny thing is - I spoke to the head gardner of Sheffield Park (one of those parks set down by Capability Brown) and he told me that the world is actually going through a cold period and this would go on for a goodly length of time. Apparently they can tell this from the reaction of different plants/trees.
Hmm. So one head gardener's opinion must be taken seriously against the massed ranks of the world's climate scientists :rolleyes:
Funny thing is - I spoke to the head gardner of Sheffield Park (one of those parks set down by Capability Brown) and he told me that the world is actually going through a cold period and this would go on for a goodly length of time. Apparently they can tell this from the reaction of different plants/trees.

but that's a garden in Britain, which is one of the places predicted to get colder in the early stages of global warming
Ah but ten years and more ago it wasn't predicted to get colder... do you remember the models predicting a Mediterranean climate for the UK?

I believe that recent model revisions show the planet getting colder for ten years or so and then the warming trend continuing again. I don'y know if that's generally accepted; it's just what I remember from recent reading.
Ah but ten years and more ago it wasn't predicted to get colder... do you remember the models predicting a Mediterranean climate for the UK?
Still might happen. The big uncertainty is over the fate of the North Atlantic Drift, as I discussed in the first post on this thread:
It has been suggested that some areas may paradoxically become cooler, at least for a while before the general increase in temperatures pulls them back up again. The best-known possible cause is the stopping of the Gulf Stream (also known as the North Atlantic Drift or the North Atlantic Current, which is part of the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation - AMOC) as a result of a surge of fresh water from melting polar ice. This currently keeps North-West Europe (including the UK) several degrees warmer than it would otherwise be, so the short-term impact of stopping it could be considerable. This was the trigger used for the sudden cooling so exaggerated in The Day after Tomorrow. Some studies have shown that the volume of flow of the Gulf Stream has already reduced by about 30% between 1957 and 2004, but the current view appears to be that a complete stoppage of the Gulf Stream is a less serious risk than previously thought.

I believe that recent model revisions show the planet getting colder for ten years or so and then the warming trend continuing again. I don'y know if that's generally accepted; it's just what I remember from recent reading.
The actual temperatures will fluctuate from year to year, but the general trend remains upwards.
IIRC, it isn't just Greenland ice sloughing that's concerning the GulfStream's oceanographers. That ice-cap's decline is immensely arguable, but Russian & Asian rivers' outflow into Arctic Ocean has been increasing year on year, and is easily measured...

FWIW, there's a fix proposed to re-boot failed cold, salty down-welling: It involves thousands of spar-buoys with a heat-pipe apiece. Cousin to those 'finny' piles used for eg transAlaskan pipe-line, each would transfer cold from sub-arctic winter atmosphere to the water just below the surface...

Not being load-bearing, they'd be a big blob of sealed foam with a marine-stainless tube containing a splash of eg ether...

IIRC, they would be strung together like the floats on long-line fishing, a couple per strand would carry locator beacons to assist recovery in Spring...
Global Warming and SF – Part 3

This is the third and last part of my tour around the global warming issues and what might be done about them, with a view to how these might feature in SF. Last time I identified four possible courses of action: to cut back CO2 production; to remove CO2 already in the atmosphere; to reduce insolation (heat received from the sun); and finally to adapt to the changes which are now inevitable. I have already dealt with the first one, now for the other three.

Remove CO2 already in the atmosphere

One of the major problems with churning out CO2 is that, once in the atmosphere, it persists for a very long time. This contrasts with other greenhouse gases such as methane, which disappear relatively quickly. Even if it were possible to stop all burning of fossil fuels immediately, the quantity of CO2 already in the atmosphere would remain higher than pre-industrial levels for centuries to come; which means that the Earth will continue warming up for centuries. As a result, there is increasing interest in "geoengineering" – physically removing CO2 from the atmosphere, or finding other ways to increase CO2 absorption or to prevent the greenhouse effect.

Geoengineering is highly controversial because of worries that it may have unwanted consequences; for instance, increasing oceanic absorption of CO2 will increase seawater's acidity (something which is already beginning to happen) with potentially dire consequences for the marine ecosystem. It is therefore only being considered as a last resort, because climate scientists now believe that there is no chance of cutting CO2 production by enough to make much difference; in fact, before the current recession hit, carbon emissions were still increasing by 3% a year.

Geoengineering techniques can be as simple as planting trees, but this only postpones the problem – at some point, the trees will die and their carbon will be released. More drastic measures are therefore being considered. These include seeding the oceans with iron filings to encourage the growth of organisms which would trap CO2. However, apart from the acidification problem, a recent experiment failed to achieve the desired effect.

A more high-tech approach is to manufacture huge quantities of "scrubbers" which will physically remove CO2 from the atmosphere. Three different techniques have been proposed.

One is a "spray hangar" in which air is sucked in one end and blown out of the other after being sprayed with sodium hydroxide solution; this reacts with CO2 to form droplets of sodium carbonate. This is known to work, but in its present form requires a huge amount of energy.

An alternative is the "solar scrubber", using sun-focusing mirrors to heat a transparent tube filled with pellets of calcium oxide. As the temperature rises to 400 degrees C, air is blown through the tube and its CO2 combines with the chemical to form calcium carbonate; virtually all of the CO2 is extracted. The process can be reversed by doubling the temperature in order to drive off pure CO2 which can easily be captured; but of course, a safe way of disposing of it then has to be found. One possibility is to pump it into adjacent greenhouses in order to promote crop growth (a technique which is already being used).

The third option is the "air collector", which pumps air over an ion exchange resin, a polymer impregnated with sodium hydroxide, to which the CO2 adheres. It can later be washed out for disposal using humid air at only 40 degree C.

The benefit of these technologies is that there appears to be minimal risk of unintended consequences since all they do is extract CO2, a process which can instantly be switched off when no longer needed. The main drawback of the CO2 scrubbers is that millions of the things would be needed, at huge cost.

Reduce insolation

A different approach is to reduce the degree by which the sun heats up the Earth, by reflecting more of its rays back into space. As we have seen, ice fields reflect around 90% of the insolation (compared with 94% absorption in open water) and their melting is contributing to Arctic warming. One study calculated that reflecting an extra 1.8% of insolation would cancel out the effects of doubling the CO2 levels.

Various fanciful ideas have been proposed, such as dumping vast quantities of white polystyrene to float in the oceans (which could of course reduce their capacity to absorb CO2) or pumping sulphate particles high into the atmosphere to reflect the sun's rays (but this could cause catastrophic droughts in some regions, and would need constant renewal). A variation on the last one is to pump atomised seawater into stratocumulus clouds in order to increase their density and make them more reflective. This should work, but the processes of atomisation and of getting the water up to the clouds in such enormous quantities are obviously not trivial issues.

A more high-tech approach is to launch "sunshades" into space, in the form of discs of silicon about 60 cm across., just a few micrometers thick and weighting 1 gram. Each would be covered with holes calculated to act like a lens, causing dispersion and dimming of the sunlight. They would be "steerable" using solar energy to keep them in the correct position and orientation. The proposal involves launching containers, each carrying a million discs, from huge electromagnetic rail guns, towards the L1 Lagrange point where the Earth's and the sun's gravities cancel out. It has been estimated that twenty rail guns, each 3 km high and working around the clock to launch one container every five minutes for ten years, could achieve the 1.8% reduction, and it is hoped that the discs could last for up to 50 years.

The danger with all of these techniques would be if they were relied on to cancel out the effect of rising CO2 levels, thereby allowing CO2 to build up to high levels. Should the regular renewal of the sunshades then fail for any reason, the consequences to the climate of being suddenly exposed to high levels of atmospheric CO2 could be sudden and catastrophic.

A lower-tech approach would be to install reflective surfaces on the roofs of buildings or in the form of material covering desert areas, in those locations not required for solar heating or power systems.

Adapt to the changes

It is now accepted by climate scientists that any effective moves to reduce CO2 production will now be too late to avoid some unpleasant consequences – our politicians have already failed us by avoiding the potentially unpopular measures required. Even the 2007 IPCC report predicted a rise in global average temperature of between 2 and 6.4 degrees C this century and, as we have seen, a recent conference of climate scientists concluded that the outlook has worsened since that was written. An increase of 4 degrees by the end of the century now looks quite possible on present trends. So as well as continuing to try to minimise the warming effect, we are going to have to prepare for the consequences of a warmer world.

What this might mean is discussed in an article published in New Scientist on 28 February 2009 ("Surviving in a Warmer World"), which spells out the implications of a 4 degree warmer world. The picture painted is frankly horrifying. Much of the tropics would become uninhabitable due to drought, floods or extreme weather; the Amazon basin would become a desert, as would most of the USA, southern Europe, nearly all of Africa, southern Asia and Australia. Rising sea levels would mean that low-lying areas would vanish. On the bright side, there would be some potential for reforestation due to changing wind patterns, in west Africa and western Australia. However, the main areas suitable for habitation and farming would be Canada and Alaska, northern Europe and Asia, New Zealand, western Greenland and western Antarctica. These would become exceedingly crowded places, with the surviving population having to live in dense, high-rise accommodation to leave as much usable land as possible free for agriculture.

James Lovelock, who developed the "Gaia" theory, estimates that the devastation caused by climate change could result in the world's population reducing to 1 billion or less by the end of this century. Inevitably, there would be huge conflicts as displaced populations attempted to move to more favoured areas. Many observers think that the first climate change war has been underway for years, in the civil war in the Sudan. Christians and Muslims had lived peacefully side-by side in Sudan's Darfur province for centuries, but the trigger for their vicious war (in which 200,000 have already died and around two million been displaced) has been a dramatic reduction in rainfall over the past few decades, leading to increasing desertification and a conflict over the remaining usable land. If the regional climate projections are right, similar problems are likely to occur throughout the tropics during this century.

Other climate impact specialists consider that the worst consequences can be reduced, provided that we start planning and acting now, by determinedly adopting the kind of measures discussed in this survey. It's too late to prevent a lot of problems, but it's worth doing all we can to minimise the future scale of them, since that could prevent a bad situation from becoming utterly appalling. The political issues and pressures generated by all this are a potential source of material for near-future fiction.

Even if world leaders really begin to address this problem effectively, some changes will have to be made. The rising sea level, combined with more, and more violent, storms means that it would generally be futile to continue defending low-lying coastal areas. To give one well-known example, there is no point in the long term in trying to protect cities like New Orleans. This is already beginning to happen in a small way, with the evacuation of the 1,400 inhabitants of Papua New Guinea's Carteret Islands, and there are similar plans to abandon other low-lying oceanic islands. The prospect of millions of Bangladeshis moving into India as their land floods will raise problems on a very different scale.

Water shortages resulting from a combination of climate change and population growth will also require some changes to farming to get the maximum value out of agricultural land. One consequence is that meat-eating will have to diminish because, for the same food value, animal farms use farmland and water at several times the rate of crop farms. So the only farm animals likely to survive will be those which can live on rough mountain pasture unsuitable for agriculture. To make matters worse, fish stocks will continue to shrink, not just through overfishing but through the increasing acidification and deoxygenation of the oceans. The water shortages will almost certainly end the current squeamishness about genetically-modified crops; to produce enough food, it will be necessary to develop drought-resistant strains.

Even so, a switch to a largely vegetarian diet wouldn't provide a complete solution. Crops not only use up a lot of water, our commercial farms are also heavily dependent on oil, for farm machinery, transport and fertiliser. Reductions in the use of fossil fuels to cut back on CO2 production, combined with an increasing shortage of oil as cheap sources are used up, will make traditional crop-growing far more difficult and expensive. A recent UK TV programme on "farms of the future" predicted the decline of large-scale crop growing in favour of local "vertical farms", based on hedges and trees producing fruit, nuts and edible leaves, which can provide several times the food value of the same area of arable land. These require very little work or other resources to grow, but they are much more labour-intensive to collect.

That just about wraps up my survey. In a nutshell, climate change is accelerating, and if we wish to avoid some rather horrendous consequences, we need to put a far higher priority on taking the kind of preventative and precautionary measures I have been describing. I hope that all of this provides some useful material for the SF community; certainly there is scope for a wide range of backgrounds, from best-case to worst-case. My own novel, which I mentioned last time, was intended to represent a likely future but, in the light of the latest information, is now looking to be at the optimistic end of the spectrum!

(An extract from my SFF blog)
Larry Niven wrote a book called The Descent of Anansi which included the consequences of over reaction to global warming. What happened was that everyone got right behind action to reduce CO2 emissions just as a new, totally natural, ice age began. Result was a world with advancing glaciers, billions dying of hunger with crop failure, and a desperate need for more carbon emissions.

OK, that is fiction. However, there is a very normal human trait that we need to be aware of. If a bunch of people who share a point of view get together and talk, often and for long periods, then social feed-back will reinforce that opinion, and the group will end up as extremists. This has been well documented for muslim terrorism. What no-one will admit is that it applies to climate change also.

This explains the extreme views of people life Prof. Hansen, who now claims the world's sea levels will rise 6 metres by 2100.

It is hard to get a balanced viewpoint on this, and I tend to go back to quoting current trends when I hear people preaching imminent disaster. The world, over the past 30 years, has been warming at a global average of 0.18 C per decade. Sea levels have been rising at 3 mm per year. That is, 300 mm per century (one foot). Ice melt in the Arctic has been almost totally sea ice, which has no impact on sea levels.

In Antarctica, the Antarctic Peninsular, which is a tiny fraction of the continent, has been warming with ice near the sea melting. This could have a minor impact only on global sea levels. The rest of the continent is warming at such a slow rate that it is almost unmeasurable. Antarctica has an average temperature of minus 50 C, which means that normal global warming got one hell of a long way to go to have much impact.

Global warming is real, and caused by humans. However, it is not going to cause massive disaster any time soon. We have at least 50 years grace to begin to work on it. As Hitchhikers Guide says "Don't panic!
Yes its real but not just caused by us(oh how like to see ourselves at the centre of things. Homo sapiens is still very anthropocentric)
But we need to drop Global Warming and use Climate Change! Even David Attenborough agrees on this point!
I don't see any point in giving as an example one man whose predictions are so massively more than those of the scientific community in general. What is regarded as the most soundly-based recent estimate of the rise in sea level by 2100 is 1.0-1.5 metres. So Hansen is clearly out on his own, and can be ignored.

It isn't actually possible to "overshoot" and cause a new ice age, because if the climate starts to cool we have a fast, ready-made solution: burn all the coal and the forests, and spread the soot all over the ice!

The problem we have is that CO2 levels are continuing to rise despite all the fine words about reducing them. Getting that under control will be very difficult and unpopular. Personally, I don't think that the public in general, and politicians in particular, will want to take the necessary action until the need for it is blindingly obvious - by which time it will be too late to avert major problems.
To Anthony
Re overshooting.

In fact, it is hard to make good predictions of any kind since there is still so much to learn about climate. There are researchers who believe that we are entering what would normally be a new glaciation period - except that greenhouse gases are keeping the world warm. Now I do not know whether this is true or not, and no-one who is honest will claim they have clear knowledge one way or the other.

However, the overshooting mentioned in Niven's book dealt with a fictional situation where a new glaciation period was coming, and at the same time, people reduced carbon emissions drastically, till there was too little CO2 in the atmosphere to hold back the ice. Is this true in fact? I dunno.

I tend to react with considerable scepticism to anyone who makes definitive claims about climate change. I tend to think that a balanced view is more a middle ground - neither global warming denial, or global warming catastrophism. We need a recognition of the existing situation, and an acceptance of the need for carefully managed change to the world's energy economy, without silly panic.
I agree with you that there's a lot that isn't known, and the more detail you try to obtain the more uncertain it gets. But to argue that the 'unknowns' mean that we shouldn't take the problem seriously is a logical fallacy: when we know that the CO2 levels are much higher than they've been for hundreds of thousands of years; and that this has a warming effect; and that the overwhelming majority of climate scientists are firmly of the view that this warming is going to continue into the foreseeable future unless we take some drastic action very soon; then arguing about the details is a bit like debating the exact specification of the rope that's going to hang you.

The problem with CO2 is that once in the atmosphhere, it hangs around for centuries. So even if it were possible to stop all human-sourced CO2 production now, the levels in the atmosphere would continue to be above pre-industrial levels for centuries.

As far as what is happening now is concerned, try this: Report: Climate change crisis 'catastrophic' -
Need to consider the source; the global humanitarian forum uses the same data/modeling that the IPCC does... There isn't a consensus in the scientific community on the interpretation of the modeling not even considering the lack of consensus regarding the accuracy of said modeling.

Now perhaps climate change really is responsible for that much death; how much of that is due to man's influence is wildly up for speculation since we don't really know how much influence on tidal and storm systems global temperature changes have. Changes in sea level have been happening throughout human history, but it is only recently that people have been forced to be situated so closely to the ocean that changes in sea level will guarantee the deaths of so many (so if we solved our housing and food issues the number of deaths would drop drastically).

We are already (information courtesy of Discovery Science channel) working on underwater habitats, floating cities, and pyramidal/suspension cities (which would resist earth quake and flooding quite readily). So the architecture of the future is already planned on changing in response to possible changes while still being functional. Additionally we are working on and implementing ways to scrub the emissions from factories and will almost certainly be switching to plug-in hybrid and electric vehicles as a standard for vehicle manufacture in the next decade to score or so.

I don't think anyone other than a few corrupt nasty capitalists are suggesting doing nothing when it comes to air pollution (on general principle keeping what we breathe free from industrial fumes should be obviously a good thing).

But when it comes to science fiction I think you really need to consider that the possibility that the earth is going to "flip" immensely one way or the other is almost completely unrealistic (its cool for a fiction story obviously, but don't pretend its believable): If we thought for even one moment that the earth was going to "freeze" over we would just boil sea water (nukes work wonders); put enough water vapor in the air and you get quite a bit of greenhouse effect & If we thought the earth was going the other direction then something similarly drastic gets put into place (NASA builds giant tin foil hat for earth or planets nuclear powers sterilize sahara desert in order to remove CO2 from atmosphere through nuclear weapons or industrial powers mass release aerosol compounds which have been shown to cool down the planet but break down more readily and do this over long term). Sure these options all have pretty horrible consequences, but it all pales compared to the possibility of earth being rendered into an uninhabitable wasteland.


I don't think I have suggested that we take global warming casually, or ignore the need to mitigate its effects. I merely caution people not to jump to the extreme of accepting ideas of massive catastrophism.

And that is dangerous. The EEC with its demand for biofuels is already responsible indirectly for the destruction of millions of hectares of Asian tropical rain forest, due to it creating a market for palm oil, and the locals cutting down the forest to plant oil palms. Action to reduce carbon emissions needs to be well researched, and introduced cautiously, with only the best of management.

The reference from CNN you quoted is not one that can be backed up with empirical research. It is easy to look at human deaths and say they are due to climate change. However, what would the overall human fatality rate be with, or without climate change. In the tropics, warming is minimal. It is more extreme far from the equator, but this is more likely to save lives than take them. Historically, a lot more people have died in cold snaps than heat waves.

Total sea level increase since pre-industrial times has been less than 200 mm. And any suggestion that climate change is increasing rate or intensity of hurricanes is immediately countered by climate scientists who point out that this is conjecture only. In other words, to suggest lives lost due to storms, or sea level rise, is to enter the world of speculation, not science.

I got into an argument on another forum, in which people claimed that climate change was causing thousands of extinctions. I countered by asking "name one'. The only one that my opponent could come up with was the harlequin frog. Minimal research informed me that it died out due to chytrid fungus infection - a disease brought from Africa to South America, where the frogs had no immunity.

I suggest that the same counter would apply here. Any specific example of human lives lost due to climate change would rapidly be, if not disproved, have massive doubt cast after only minimal research.

I agree that we should be acting on climate change - but cautiously. We need to develop the tools first, rather than rushing into panicky action. For example : develop and release electric cars - which has already begun with Tesla and Reva cars. More are coming.
Tesla Motors The REVA Electric Car Company - Home Page

MTF has suggested mega-engineering on a global scale may solve problems. Any such plan would have to be an absolute last resort, and only when faced with immediate, massive and irreversible damage. Currently less than half of the CO2 released ends in the atmosphere long term. Absorption occurs by solution in seawater, uptake by plants, and conversion of minerals to carbonates. Humans do not need to remove CO2 - just stop emitting it. That is quite possible without mega engineering projects.

Not is there need for catastrophism, or for panic.
I wasn't suggesting that "mega engineering" was going to cure the world's woes, but rather that slowly but surely as time passes we will be phasing out traditional cities in favor of designs which will prove much more resilient to damage and will likely be constructed to be "far more green" than today's cities simply because they are more energy efficient (thus saving dollars). I also stated in my post that "drastic measures" are what would the response to facing near total disaster would be; obviously "bankrupting" the planet would be included on the list of things I would call "drastic measures."

On the other global annihilation thread I quite vociferously argued against global warming alarmist platforms. I believe that while it is pretty clear that the world isn't going to end tomorrow if we don't stop our "evil ways" today that changing some things to be "greener" when it saves money, reduces human casualties from natural disaster, and cleans toxins out of the air (my lungs to this day don't work correctly after living in Riverside, CA for several years; I've never smoked anything in my life and I've been told my lungs look like someone who used to smoke) is a good thing.

The basic premise concerning global warming is now accepted by the scientific community - see Climate myths: Many leading scientists question climate change - environment - 16 May 2007 - New Scientist

The fact is that there is an overwhelming consensus in the scientific community about global warming and its causes. There are some exceptions, but the number of sceptics is getting smaller rather than growing. In January 2009, a poll of 3146 earth scientists found that 82% answered yes to the question: "Do you think human activity is a significant contributing factor in changing mean global temperatures?". Of the 77 climatologists actively engaged in research, 75 answered yes (97.4%).

I am not advocating panic, just a recognition of the scale of the problem and a practical plan of action to address it. This would cost a lot less than letting it ride and then coping with the problems once they've hit us. As I have repeatedly said, there is a lot that is not yet known, but it is becoming increasingly obvious that the great majority of the changes which will happen will have a negative impact on our civilisation. Furthermore, once they really get going they will be extremely difficult to stop, or even slow down - some of the changes will be self-reinforcing.

The climate models we have may be wrong - but a huge amount of effort and processing time has gone in to them, and they are the best guide we have. What comparable body of contrary evidence do we have? There is none.

No one approach is going to solve this problem, it needs a concerted effort across the board. Electric cars are fine, but unless we recharge them using non-polluting energy sources they will have a negligible effect.

Finally, one point which seems to be being overlooked here is one I made in an earlier post: even if we stabilise the per-capita output of greenhouse gases (of which there is no sign at the moment) the problem is going to get worse bcause the population of this planet is increasing by 80 million per year, every year. To quote the Wiki summary:

According to population projections, world population will continue to grow until around 2050. The 2008 rate of growth has almost halved since its peak of 2.2% per year, which was reached in 1963. World births have levelled off at about 137-million-per-year, since their peak at 163-million in the late 1990s, and are expected to remain constant. However, deaths are only around 56 million per year, and are expected to increase to 90 million by the year 2050. Since births outnumber deaths, the world's population is expected to reach about 9 billion by the year 2040.

From the present figure of around 6.8 billion to 9 increase of 32% over the next three decades. That alone should be sounding alarm bells. Especially as the developing world, where the population growth is concentrated, is also seeing the most rapid per-capita growth in energy use.

Barking up the wrong tree. We've already hashed this out here. There is consensus that climate change is occurring. And then it stops there. How much of it is due to man's influence is still entirely up for grabs.

The problem here is lay-persons thinking that scientific terminology has the same meaning for scientists as it does for them. A significant contribution to a scientist does not definitionally mean something plays a large part causally, but rather that it is statistically meaningful.

And as far as those IPCC predictions go they are based on models that quite a few scientists are starting to call into serious question due to flaws. Of course that doesn't even bring up the issue of detracting arguments found in the IPCC's own reports which most global alarmists are want to ignore.

If you look at regional predictions of global climate change over a "short" period of time you will notice that some areas are expected to go down in temperature due to the influence of aerosols in the atmosphere. Who is to say what sort of industrial changes are going to be made regarding the release and production of aerosols over the next 50 years? And since this is the case (assuming we are want to worry about a global warming trend if it exists), then why wouldn't a sustained long term moderated aerosol release strategy (we know what these aerosols break down to and how long it takes) be usable to combat "global warming?"

A lot of people are poo pooing climate change and yet look at Britain. Its been years since we had a proper winter. Oh we get frosts and strong winds,the latter incidental to where I live I think,but the frosts tend to come late nowadays. And yet someone said that britain is set to get colder? Its all so much speculation really,and without the software and years of accumulated data we can't know one way or the other. All I know is the climate of today is different to what it was when I was a schoolboy. But it seems that its mostly the winters that are different.

Similar threads