1379: "4.5 Degrees"

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synp
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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby synp » Tue Jun 10, 2014 12:43 pm UTC

*Kat* wrote:Cities can be rebuilt again and again. Example: Charleston, South Carolina. It was leveled by the Civil War (1864?), drowned by a hurricane (1868?), and flattened by an earthquake (1886). From the ashes it rose again. Similar stories can be told about Galveston, Chicago, San Francisco and New Orleans.

This is getting more expensive. Cities today have sewers, subways, electric, telecom, gas and fresh water pipes. Roads are paved with various materials. All that infrastructure costs billions to rebuild. It's not just houses anymore.

Well into the 19th century, towns all over the world would be used and then discarded. That's the story of American ghost towns and abandoned villages in Europe and the middle east. The infrastructure now makes this untenable. Pretty much anywhere that was inhabited in the mid-20th century is still inhabited. Too expensive to build a new town in a slightly better place. Instead, we pave a road there.
People who fear global warming fear losing land to the sea, but what about the land we will gain?

A lot of people live close to the shores and in low lands. There's a net loss of land, and the loss is mostly from some of the most densely inhabited land.
There are large stretches of Earth where few people live because its too cold and too dry. Global warming will change that. Places that are now cold and dry will become warmer and wetter -- and more hospitable. We'll lose islands but gain lakes. There is a whole continent at the south pole inhabited by nothing but penguins and their predators that we can move onto.

It's also dark there for six months at a time. I'd rather have my tropical islands than a cold, dark Antarctica.
Will this lead to huge socio-political upheavals? Yeah. But again, that's not a bad thing. History has shown time and again that the longer things stay the same, the more rotten the status quo becomes. Example: Every Empire Ever.

So, permanent revolution (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Permanent_revolution)? Those upheavals in the middle east have definitely worked out well for them, right?

Earth's climate *has* changed in the past. It has done so without human influence. It *will* change in the future, with or without our help. Volcanoes will erupt. Asteroids will strike. And when they do the climate will change. Maybe for a few years. Maybe for a few hundred years. Either way, we will survive.

We will survive. That does not automatically imply that you and I will survive.

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Alsadius
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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby Alsadius » Tue Jun 10, 2014 1:19 pm UTC

addams wrote:We are SOO delicate.
We have such a narrow range of tolerable temperatures.


This is certainly true - why just the other day I was talking to a Bedouin dude and an Inuit lady about how humanity cannot possibly survive without central heating and air conditioning.

rmsgrey wrote:"Dinosaurs have survived climate changes in the past with far fewer resources than we have today" - unknown dinosaur in the very late Cretaceous.


You should look into the works of Luis and Walter Alvarez.

gmalivuk wrote:But just because we *can* rebuild cities doesn't mean we should let them be destroyed in the first place. You and your ilk can continue masturbating furiously all over libertarianism, but the grown-ups in the room would like to prevent millions of deaths and billions of displacements if at all possible.


And when I see an AGW fearmongerer having a rational debate about whether it's better to end the industrial age or to build some walls, then I'll consider you to be all grown up.

synp wrote:We will survive. That does not automatically imply that you and I will survive.


We're talking about centuries from now. While I do hope to be immortal by then, the more likely outcome is that you and I will both be worm food long before.

mattarth
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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby mattarth » Tue Jun 10, 2014 1:44 pm UTC

The comic is great.

However, because I'm a pedant, shouldn't there be a comma after "aggressive" (or no comma after "prompt")?

"Without prompt, aggressive, limits on CO2 emissions, the earth will likely warm be an aaverage of 4-5C by the century's end."

rather than:

"Without prompt, aggressive limits on CO2 emissions, the earth will likely warm be an aaverage of 4-5C by the century's end."

Otherwise it doesn't work as a parenthetical phrase. Just askin'

cwDeici
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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby cwDeici » Tue Jun 10, 2014 1:47 pm UTC

Sea level rise is expected to continue for centuries.[13] In 2007, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) projected that during the 21st century, sea level will rise another 18 to 59 cm (7.1 to 23.2 in), but these numbers do not include "uncertainties in climate-carbon cycle feedbacks nor do they include the full effects of changes in ice sheet flow".[14] More recent projections assessed by the US National Research Council (2010)[15] suggest possible sea level rise over the 21st century of between 56 and 200 cm (22 and 79 in).


See a lot of talk about losing cities...

Currently the sea level is rising at about 3mm a year.
We're not going to lose cities. We're going to build some expensive dams or relocate a bit upwards gradually and do a few occasional mass relocations. It's just a money problem, except for poor countries, but then again what's new? It's a good thing the population rise is flattening out though, it makes this much easier to deal with.


Btw., here's something from wikipedia on the IPCC:

Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change[edit]

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has assessed the scientific literature on climate engineering (referred to as "geoengineering" in its reports). The IPCC's Fourth Assessment Report was published in 2007. It states:[45]


Geo-engineering options, such as ocean fertilization to remove CO2 directly from the atmosphere, or blocking sunlight by bringing material into the upper atmosphere, remain largely speculative and unproven, and with the risk of unknown side-effects. Reliable cost estimates for these options have not been published

Working Group I's contribution to the IPCC's Fifth Assessment Report was published in 2013. It states:[110]


Models suggest that if SRM methods were realizable they would be effective in countering increasing temperatures, and would be less, but still, effective in countering some other climate changes. SRM would not counter all effects of climate change, and all proposed geoengineering methods also carry risks and side effects. Additional consequences cannot yet be anticipated as the level of scientific understanding about both SRM and CDR is low. There are also many (political, ethical, and practical) issues involving geoengineering that are beyond the scope of this report.

chenille
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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby chenille » Tue Jun 10, 2014 2:39 pm UTC

Alsadius wrote:And when I see an AGW fearmongerer having a rational debate about whether it's better to end the industrial age or to build some walls, then I'll consider you to be all grown up.

It's better to build thousands of walls then end the industrial age, but fortunately, I don't think anyone is in favor of that anyway. For someone objecting so strenuously any hint of hyperbole and playing up damages, it seems you don't mind doing the same for costs.

cwDeici wrote:It's just a money problem, except for poor countries, but then again what's new?

That's a pretty big exception. When people say that global warming is expected to cost millions of lives, who did you think they were talking about? Of course wealthy cities like New York and Tokyo should get walls no problem - or if there was flooding, I'm sure the damage can be limited to poor areas like happened with Katrina. It's places like the African coast and Southeast Asia that are unlikely to deal.

In the same way, the drought in America might have caused a lot of economic damage, but it hasn't caused starvation or political upheaval - that's left for countries like Syria. So yes, synp was exaggerating when he talks about the lives of posters here being in danger; a few of us might be ruined by the collapse of local communities, say where agriculture is affected or not worth walling, but I expect we're largely not the people who are at serious risk.

But does saying the externalities from industry will disproportionately hurt impoverished regions actually make things sound better to you? It doesn't to me.

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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby KarenRei » Tue Jun 10, 2014 3:03 pm UTC

@cwDelci: That is a fair criticism, and something I have to fault Randall on, despite appreciating his premise. He implies that the situation we'll be at in 2100 is the same as the equilibrium climate at such an elevated temperature. But that's simply not the case, there's a huge amount of thermal inertia to overcome. If we hit a rise of 4,5C at the end of the century and then held temperatures level at that endlessly, it would take nearly a thousand years for most of the embodied sea level rise and other changes to occur. The sea level rise begins slowly and takes a long time to accelerate.

That said, you don't have to have as radical of changes as seen in this comic to be problematic. A "mere" 1-2 meter sea level rise shouldn't be thought of in terms of the average sea level, but as 1-2 meters on the top of peak of storm surges. That's where the problems occur. And it doesn't just mean you have to build up existing sea walls and levees an extra 1-2 meters, but it means orders of magnitude more land that previously didn't need sea walls and levees suddenly needs them.

I don't think the first world, honestly, will have any trouble dealing with it, when spread out over the time scales we're talking about. On the other hand, the third world will have a much harder time of it, and of course natural ecosystems are going to take another bit hit in a long line of many in the anthropocene....

Oh, and I must register opposition to the concept that the choice is between controlling carbon and ending human industrialization. Carbon does not inherently equal industrialization any more than whale oil inherently equals lighting. If we, as a species, can't find a better way to turn wheels than digging up dead plant and microbe remains, burning them, and dumping the waste into our breathing air, given adequate incentive and time, then we don't deserve to be called sapient.
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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby JudeMorrigan » Tue Jun 10, 2014 3:08 pm UTC

mattarth wrote:The comic is great.

However, because I'm a pedant, shouldn't there be a comma after "aggressive" (or no comma after "prompt")?

"Without prompt, aggressive, limits on CO2 emissions, the earth will likely warm be an aaverage of 4-5C by the century's end."

rather than:

"Without prompt, aggressive limits on CO2 emissions, the earth will likely warm be an aaverage of 4-5C by the century's end."

Otherwise it doesn't work as a parenthetical phrase. Just askin'

It wasn't a parenthetical phrase. Those are coordinate adjectives.

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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby zz1000zz » Tue Jun 10, 2014 4:39 pm UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:
zz1000zz wrote:As I said in my first post, the IPCC report gives four RCPs. The highest of these (8.5) assumes no actions are ever taken to combat global warming (and even then, is considered by many climate scientists to be an over-estimate). This comic talks about the requirement of prompt, aggressive action, something only true for the lowest RCP (2.6). Only RCP8.5 even comes close to justifying the numbers in this comic, and it has a forcing more than three times as high as the scenario this comic claims to use.
Whiiiiiiich is what I said; you have pointed out that the comic is picking the worst outcome scenario, and citing that as proof that the comic is incorrect.


That is not what you said, and it isn't true. You said I claimed "they aren't 100% confident of the outcome the comic is based on." I said nothing of the sort. I pointed out the values in this comic are exaggerated even for the worst case scenario, and that worst case scenario is more than three times as bad as the scenario this comic claims to be examining.

This comic claims to be examining what will happen if we don't follow RCP2.6. It uses the result worse than those given if we follow RCP8.5. This is unquestionably wrong.

Izawwlgood wrote:
zz1000zz wrote:I wasn't unaware of that. I was just giving you the benefit of the doubt in assuming you weren't being a complete buffoon. Even the link you offered makes it abundantly clear Richard Tol is not a denier, quoting him as saying:
You... Dude, keep up with your own statements. You said there was no such denier being mentioned. Richard Tol is/was a well known denier, who, like you, asserted there was no concensus among scientists on climate change. I even quoted you making that argument in my last post, which you have since dropped. I linked the article I linked (that you now seem to be aware of existing, so can I only assume you have clicked on the link) because Richard Tol, a denier claiming there was no consensus (like you!), did his due diligence and now affirms there is a consensus.


You are just making things up about Richard Tol. He said he believed there was a consensus from the very beginning. All he ever did was say the paper by Cook et al failed to prove such. He's always agreed with the position you claim he denied. This is because a person can criticize a paper even if he agrees with the position the paper endorses. Believing something reaches the right conclusion doesn't require believing it is right.

As for the article you linked to, I've discussed it multiple times. I've even had exchanges with Skeptical Science team members on some of the issues it covers. And you know what? None of them call Tol a denier. In fact, they often make the point Tol agrees with their overall position.

Izawwlgood wrote:
zz1000zz wrote:Similarly, I know for a fact Richard Tol has never recanted like you claim. Given I knew your claim could not possibly apply to Tol, and given your own link makes it abundantly clear Tol is not a denier, I felt it was best not to assume you were calling Tol a denier.
Wait... so... He is not a denier, he affirms there is consensus, but he never recanted? I'm not sure what you're trying to say here; that he was never a denier, or that he never recanted? But still agrees that there is a consensus? Because if you look at his wiki, you'll see quite clearly that he is/was a well known... wait for it... Yes that's it, AGW denier. There's literally a section of it on his wiki.


Tol has never been a denier, and his Wikipedia article does not say he is one (not that Wikipedia saying he is would mean he actually is). He also hasn't recanted anything, even a couple points he should have.

Izawwlgood wrote:
zz1000zz wrote:You haven't addressed a single point I've raised with anything other than hand waving, insults and blatant fabrications. You've shown you're willing to call anyone a denier, even if he explicitly agrees with the position you claim deniers deny. You claim to know my views on global warming, yet you couldn't possibly describe them to anyone. Finally, you claim, in contradiction to practically every scientist in the world, that there are not many different positions with varying degrees of consensus.

You're not just making things up. You're spouting off what might as well be the delusional ramblings of a street-corner wino.
I'm not sure why you're having such a hard time with this; you are someone who denies at the very very least, the fact that there is a scientific consensus among climate scientists. Is this incorrect? Do you accept that there is a consensus? Did you not click on the link that showed Richard Tol concuring with the fact that there is an over 97% consensus? Or did he not recant? Or... was he never a denier? Like you aren't?

Your positions on this are hardly consistant, which is why I've only called you a denier because of your refusal to recognize consensus. Which there is.


I've been perfectly consistent with my position, as has Richard Tol. If you quit making things up and just stuck to what he and I actually say, you would have all the answers to your questions.

Izawwlgood wrote:
zz1000zz wrote:Seriously, what I said about the RCPs and the IPCC's position isn't remotely controversial. It's taken directly from the IPCC. If I could post links, I could show sources like RealClimate acknowledging it. Heck, even Skeptical Science, the source of the article you told me to look at, acknowledges the same point.
And seriously, I never said it was controversial or even incorrect. Take a look at my response, and try again.


I said my argument shows it is "unquestionably true" this comic is wrong and based upon a massive distortion of the evidence. If my argument doesn't show that, then my argument must be wrong. You said my argument "in no way shape or form disproves or counters the comic." Ergo, you said my argument was wrong.

This comic is not just wrong. It is a gross misrepresentation of the evidence. That is obviously true to anyone who bothers to look at the IPCC report it cites.

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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby Izawwlgood » Tue Jun 10, 2014 4:49 pm UTC

Lets simplify this for you; are you of the position that there is not a consensus among climate scientists? Or, that there are multiple positions equally (for various interpretations of the word 'equally') supported by climate scientists?

EDIT: Also, I take it you haven't read the hover text?
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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby gmalivuk » Tue Jun 10, 2014 5:30 pm UTC

I love when the "we'll just build dams" crowd complains that cutting carbon emissions is the expensive option.
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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby nickjbor » Tue Jun 10, 2014 5:31 pm UTC

Two things.

1 - I believe Global warming is happening.

2 - Given that many people do not, why were no citations provided? Frankly the claim seems a bit extreme. The graphic is also misleading in that it uses artificial IAU's and not degrees, implying thus that if we go "up by 1" we are all doomed.

I am not doubting the world is warming at the rate specified, I am doubting that

4.5C is an "ice age unit"

-4IAU's is snowball earth

+2IAU will see palm trees able to grow at the poles

and that the sea level could rise any more than 100M as there does not appear to be enough ice to make this possible.


If anyone can cite me examples of this (I tried looking through the thread but the neocons made me ill) I'll be very appreciative.
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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby gmalivuk » Tue Jun 10, 2014 5:38 pm UTC

My understanding is that defining 4.5deg as one IAU comes from knowing the average temperatures during the last ice age, -4IAU=snowball because that was the temperature then, and +2IAU=Cretaceous because that was the temperature then.

Palms at the poles and +200m sea levels are not predictions, they're descriptions of the Cretaceous.
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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby nickjbor » Tue Jun 10, 2014 5:41 pm UTC

gmalivuk wrote:My understanding is that defining 4.5deg as one IAU comes from knowing the average temperatures during the last ice age, -4IAU=snowball because that was the temperature then, and +2IAU=Cretaceous because that was the temperature then.

Palms at the poles and +200m sea levels are not predictions, they're descriptions of the Cretaceous.



Again, any citations? I trust that your understanding is such, but it's not mine.
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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby gmalivuk » Tue Jun 10, 2014 5:46 pm UTC

I honestly don't know or particularly care if those numbers are exactly correct based on the latest research. I was explaining how Randall made the comic starting with those numbers from whatever sources he used.

You seemed to be the latest in a long line of posters to show up with a complaint about the 200m and polar palms things based on a fundamental misunderstanding of the timing of the last panel. I was interested in correcting that more than in hunting down citations for someone else's webcomic.
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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby Izawwlgood » Tue Jun 10, 2014 6:01 pm UTC

gmalivuk wrote:I love when the "we'll just build dams" crowd complains that cutting carbon emissions is the expensive option.
I mean, think of all the jobs it'll create!
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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby gmalivuk » Tue Jun 10, 2014 6:10 pm UTC

But "ending the industrial age", which someone was actually dumb enough to say upthread, would create even more, especially if it's acompanied by that other libertarian wet dream of eliminating the minimum wage. Just rebrand slave labor as cheap abundant clean energy!
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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby Moose Anus » Tue Jun 10, 2014 6:14 pm UTC

gmalivuk wrote:Just rebrand slave labor as cheap abundant clean energy!
Abundant Green is people!
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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby chenille » Tue Jun 10, 2014 6:34 pm UTC

gmalivuk wrote:Palms at the poles and +200m sea levels are not predictions, they're descriptions of the Cretaceous.

Why has there been so much confusion about that? The point is labeled Cretaceous. Should there have been a triceratops to hammer the point in, or would that have just caused complaints about reverse evolution?

nickjbor wrote:Again, any citations? I trust that your understanding is such, but it's not mine.

The Cretaceous polar forests are very well known, so you can see for instance wikipedia and its references. Palms aren't mentioned as a major component, and maybe our non-botanist author is mixing them with cycads, which are similar in most respects. But maybe not; for instance Spicer et al. list a few plants that are likely primitive palms among their flora.

The sea level is given around 170 m, though with enough error that one might round it one way or another, according to Müller et al.. There may be still better references out there; these are just what comes up right away when searching the topics on google, which I would encourage anyone interested to try.
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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby Alsadius » Tue Jun 10, 2014 6:39 pm UTC

chenille wrote:
Alsadius wrote:And when I see an AGW fearmongerer having a rational debate about whether it's better to end the industrial age or to build some walls, then I'll consider you to be all grown up.

It's better to build thousands of walls then end the industrial age, but fortunately, I don't think anyone is in favor of that anyway. For someone objecting so strenuously any hint of hyperbole and playing up damages, it seems you don't mind doing the same for costs.


This is the explicitly stated goal of some anti-AGW activists. (If you doubt that, parse the meaning of the person upthread who talked about killing the 700 million "most wasteful" people, or the person who talked about dropping us down to 700 million total people instead). I don't claim it to be a majority, of course, but I feel the need to take some shots at them.

gmalivuk wrote:I love when the "we'll just build dams" crowd complains that cutting carbon emissions is the expensive option.


It is. It really, really is. The studies I've seen that say otherwise all use discount rates that are somewhere between unlikely and hilarious. I mean, I don't know about you, but it makes sense to me that continuing to lift the third world out of poverty through the miracle of capitalism will probably more than finance some dam construction, even before you consider our growth.

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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby chenille » Tue Jun 10, 2014 6:53 pm UTC

Alsadius wrote:(If you doubt that, parse the meaning of the person upthread who talked about killing the 700 million "most wasteful" people, or the person who talked about dropping us down to 700 million total people instead).

The post that mentioned it "purely as an exercise" after making a joke about the World Series, and the single sentence reply by jestingrabbit? That's your example of people seriously advocating reversing the industrial revolution, which you decided to present as the alternative to building countless dams while telling us to grow up and have more rational debates? Yeah, I can see you're genuinely committed to not exaggerating or misrepresenting things, huh.

Alsadius wrote:It is. It really, really is. The studies I've seen that say otherwise all use discount rates that are somewhere between unlikely and hilarious.

Can you give any references? Dams aren't cheap; the New Orleans levee system is for instance usually quoted as costing some 14 billion dollars, and it seems like you're proposing every coastal city or important coastal region would need to put up something as well. That is not obviously less than the costs of cutting carbon emissions, especially if there is a way to do that by investing in and developing alternative energy sources, and of course since they affect much more than just sea levels. What numbers are you using?
Last edited by chenille on Tue Jun 10, 2014 7:18 pm UTC, edited 5 times in total.

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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby KarenRei » Tue Jun 10, 2014 7:08 pm UTC

Alsadius: The use of whale oil for lighting, contrary to popular myth, didn't end because people ran out of whales. Certain species had been hunted to near extinction, but other whale populations were largely untouched. The use of whale oil for lighting went away because kerosene lighting was introduced and it was cheaper. Why didn't this happen instantly? Because it took time to overcome inertia - sourcing light oil, technological innnovations on extraction, refining, and lamps, distribution infrastructure, hardware deployment, overcoming social resistance, etc. Then all of that happened once again with electric light.

The goal isn't to replace carbon with someone more expensive. The goal is to put forth the funding and scale necessary to make alternative technologies cheaper than carbon (some of which are nearly there at present). Just like with kerosene, there's overhead. But with all of the countless competing techs, the concept that none of them will ultimately play out to be cheaper than carbon seems quite unrealistic.

Chenille: As for the people complaining about the 200m of sea level rise: the reason they're having trouble with that is because there doesn't seem to be enough water on Earth to achieve that. So you can point to research showing that it was nearly 200m higher in the Cretaceous, but that doesn't jibe with the fact that modern research suggests that if all ice on Earth today melted, sea levels would rise about 70m. If you could offer up an explanation as to why there would be such a difference, I'm sure it'd be quite appreciated. Perhaps the seas were constrained into a smaller area and thus had to rise more?

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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby chenille » Tue Jun 10, 2014 7:27 pm UTC

KarenRei wrote:If you could offer up an explanation as to why there would be such a difference, I'm sure it'd be quite appreciated. Perhaps the seas were constrained into a smaller area and thus had to rise more?

The explanations I could find for the high sea level are a mix of the warm climate and tectonics, with things like increased formation of mid-ocean ridges pushing water up and flooding large portions of continents. That adding another hundred metres seems like a lot to me, but I'm not an expert, so I can only go by what is quoted. Like I said, if you are interested you are probably as capable of finding details as I am.

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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby JudeMorrigan » Tue Jun 10, 2014 7:45 pm UTC

A quick google search seems to suggest that a good bit of it is due to plate tectonics. See: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18323446 for example.

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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby RMc » Tue Jun 10, 2014 8:07 pm UTC

One major problem with the AGW "debate" is that it's not a debate at all; both sides are absolutely convinced that they are the Good People of the World, and the other side is filled with moral and intellectual midgets, not even worthy of being alive, let alone be allowed to hold opinions. (It kinda makes it tough to form a consensus.)

Funny thing is, I'm mostly on the side of the "believers"; I think AGW is probably happening, and humans are probably causing at least some of it. I haven't the faintest notion what to do about it, or even if anything can be done.

But the whole thing is so damn politicized that the AGW people are making things worse through their zealotry: going up to someone's door and shrieking, "Join our church now or forever burn in hell!" Is not likely to win a lot of converts.

I've had the opportunity to interview a lot of people on the subject (I was a radio announcer for 25 years), and whenever I talked to an AGW believer I asked this question: "If your stance on AGW is so obvious and so irrefutable, why isn't it more popular?" Several people stammered. One said, "Because the human race is intrinsically stupid (besides him, apparently)". One woman became irate: "We're not trying to be popular, we're trying to save the planet!" Good for you, lady, but if can't get your message out, you ain't saving nothing.

Sure, anti-AGW folks bring the hate, too, but I'm not really concerned with them, because that's not the side I'm (mostly) on. I want my side to win the day, and the AGW believers aren't winning a damn thing with arrogance and nastiness. Yes, it's tough dealing with "stupid" people; I do it every single day, and so do most other people. But you have to put that aside if you're truly going to communicate. And if you're right about AGW -- which I believe you are -- people have to know the truth; you have to explain it to them in a way they can understand. In another words: you gotta increase them poll numbers, Jack.

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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby JudeMorrigan » Tue Jun 10, 2014 8:17 pm UTC

RMc wrote:One major problem with the AGW "debate" is that it's not a debate at all; both sides are absolutely convinced that they are the Good People of the World, and the other side is filled with moral and intellectual midgets, not even worthy of being alive, let alone be allowed to hold opinions. (It kinda makes it tough to form a consensus.)

One major problem with tone-police is their tendency towards wild hyperbole and pointing to extremists as being representative of a whole.

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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby gmalivuk » Tue Jun 10, 2014 8:19 pm UTC

RMc wrote:One major problem with the AGW "debate" is that it's not a debate at all; both sides are absolutely convinced that they are the Good People of the World, and the other side is filled with moral and intellectual midgets, not even worthy of being alive, let alone be allowed to hold opinions. (It kinda makes it tough to form a consensus.)

Funny thing is, I'm mostly on the side of the "believers"; I think AGW is probably happening, and humans are probably causing at least some of it. I haven't the faintest notion what to do about it, or even if anything can be done.

But the whole thing is so damn politicized that the AGW people are making things worse through their zealotry: going up to someone's door and shrieking, "Join our church now or forever burn in hell!" Is not likely to win a lot of converts.

I've had the opportunity to interview a lot of people on the subject (I was a radio announcer for 25 years), and whenever I talked to an AGW believer I asked this question: "If your stance on AGW is so obvious and so irrefutable, why isn't it more popular?" Several people stammered. One said, "Because the human race is intrinsically stupid (besides him, apparently)". One woman became irate: "We're not trying to be popular, we're trying to save the planet!" Good for you, lady, but if can't get your message out, you ain't saving nothing.

Sure, anti-AGW folks bring the hate, too, but I'm not really concerned with them, because that's not the side I'm (mostly) on. I want my side to win the day, and the AGW believers aren't winning a damn thing with arrogance and nastiness. Yes, it's tough dealing with "stupid" people; I do it every single day, and so do most other people. But you have to put that aside if you're truly going to communicate. And if you're right about AGW -- which I believe you are -- people have to know the truth; you have to explain it to them in a way they can understand. In another words: you gotta increase them poll numbers, Jack.

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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby Izawwlgood » Tue Jun 10, 2014 8:45 pm UTC

RMc wrote:But the whole thing is so damn politicized that the AGW people are making things worse through their zealotry: going up to someone's door and shrieking, "Join our church now or forever burn in hell!" Is not likely to win a lot of converts.
I really, truly, honestly, believe you have this wrong. "AGW people" aren't knocking on doors shouting they want to convert people, they are fighting against dangerous misinformation and misrepresentation.

This is why people who don't believe in AGW are deniers, just like anti-vaxers, creationists, and holocaust deniers are deniers. Again, I'm not suggesting that they all believe in the same things, but what they *do* have in common is a refusal to awknowledge facts, science, and the work of authorities on the matter, in an effort to maintain their world view.

This is frustrating, and this is counter productive. It's especially frustrating and counter productive when people like you try and pull a 'well wait, can't we just calmly talk about it, there's no reason to get upset!'. There is reason to be upset; there is an organized movement to discredit and ignore the work of an entire field.
RMc wrote:"If your stance on AGW is so obvious and so irrefutable, why isn't it more popular?"

This is, frankly, idiotic. The popularity of something is wholly irrelevant to how correct it is. It's true that there is over a 98% consensus amongst climate scientists that AGW is a thing, but that's because they're following the data. You're suggesting a sort of reversal of the denialism thing.

RMc wrote:Sure, anti-AGW folks bring the hate, too, but I'm not really concerned with them, because that's not the side I'm (mostly) on.
Someone linked earlier actual factual death threats levied by anti-AGW people to scientists. I'm not going to apologize for heated debate and frustration when the other camp is literally threatening those in my camp.
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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby RMc » Tue Jun 10, 2014 9:16 pm UTC

Gmalivuk: Who's trying to feel superior? (You, maybe, answering my points with a smart-ass comic.) :roll:

The popularity of something is wholly irrelevant to how correct it is.

It should be that way, but it's not. If you believe AGW (or anything) is a real threat, and you want more people to realize it's a threat, you need to make it a popular view. Or else you're just cursing the darkness.

And I get that you're upset about the hate and death threats; who wouldn't be? But being all butt-hurt and shouting tu quoque -- no matter how justified -- is not going to help much, either. If you want to win, you need better tactics...because this weak sauce ain't working.

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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby Dyno » Tue Jun 10, 2014 9:23 pm UTC

I don't want to insult anyone, but apart from anything else, I really do believe that anyone citing the "97%" figure should be barred from making further "scientific" claims.

If you cite that figure, you have either not read the studies or are thoroughly incapable of understanding just how shockingly bad (like "I believe in bigfoot" bad) those studies are. I know this might seem like poisoning the well, but I assure you it isn't. You can't claim to "believe in science" and perpetual motion machines at the same time.

It's that bad, I kid you not. Like parapsychology and phrenology bad. The sort of thing Freudians aspire to.

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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby Moose Anus » Tue Jun 10, 2014 9:27 pm UTC

RMc wrote:answering my points with a smart-ass comic.) :roll:
The whole point of these fora is to talk about a smart ass-comic.
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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby Izawwlgood » Tue Jun 10, 2014 9:28 pm UTC

Dyno wrote:If you cite that figure, you have either not read the studies or are thoroughly incapable of understanding just how shockingly bad (like "I believe in bigfoot" bad) those studies are. I know this might seem like poisoning the well, but I assure you it isn't. You can't claim to "believe in science" and perpetual motion machines at the same time.
Buwuh? I urge you to support this, because nothing that you included in your post is... based on reality.

RMc: Given the reluctance of the public to accept contrary positions based on facts, and instead, become more entrenched in their outlooks when contrary data is levied against their assertions, I'm actually going to go out on a limb here and suggest that there's nothing educated people can really do. There will always be ignorance and stupidity and the solution isn't 'come up with a better way to convince them', it's 'minimize their ability to affect policy' and 'improve middle school and high school education'.

Here, I'll float a question to you; what do YOU think will convince people that their denialism is incorrect?
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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby of the way » Tue Jun 10, 2014 9:33 pm UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:This is why people who don't believe in AGW are deniers, just like anti-vaxers, creationists, and holocaust deniers are deniers.


You paint with a broad brush.

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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby Izawwlgood » Tue Jun 10, 2014 9:34 pm UTC

of the way wrote:
Izawwlgood wrote:This is why people who don't believe in AGW are deniers, just like anti-vaxers, creationists, and holocaust deniers are deniers.


You paint with a broad brush.
And if you had managed to read the entire paragraph, not just the first sentence of it, you'd see I actually do no such thing.
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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby of the way » Tue Jun 10, 2014 9:50 pm UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:
of the way wrote:
Izawwlgood wrote:This is why people who don't believe in AGW are deniers, just like anti-vaxers, creationists, and holocaust deniers are deniers.


You paint with a broad brush.
And if you had managed to read the entire paragraph, not just the first sentence of it, you'd see I actually do no such thing.


I disagree. You're basically saying there is absolutely no chance that someone who doesn't believe in AGW is just misinformed. And that all anti-vaxers have been presented the facts, with sources, or shown in a clear manner why their information is not valid. Holocaust deniers...there could possibly be some kids who...well, that'd be an extreme reach, but I do detest absolutes when it isn't verifiably absolute.

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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby Izawwlgood » Tue Jun 10, 2014 9:56 pm UTC

of the way wrote:
Izawwlgood wrote:
of the way wrote:
Izawwlgood wrote:This is why people who don't believe in AGW are deniers, just like anti-vaxers, creationists, and holocaust deniers are deniers.


You paint with a broad brush.
And if you had managed to read the entire paragraph, not just the first sentence of it, you'd see I actually do no such thing.


I disagree. You're basically saying there is absolutely no chance that someone who doesn't believe in AGW is just misinformed. And that all anti-vaxers have been presented the facts, with sources, or shown in a clear manner why their information is not valid. Holocaust deniers...there could possibly be some kids who...well, that'd be an extreme reach, but I do detest absolutes when it isn't verifiably absolute.
I'm saying to continue not believing in AGW requires you deny lots of data. Just like... wait for it... continuing to be an anti-vaxxer requires denying lots of data, just like... there it is; being a holocaust denier also requires you deny lots of data.

If you want to argue it's possible to maintain a belief out of ignorance, then sure! I'll absolutely agree! My friends toddler is absolutely unaware of the Holocaust, and probably believes something like that couldn't happen. How could he? Why would he? But that's not really the sort of person we're talking about here. If you want to excuse a position because of ignorance, then I will absolutely grant you that, so long as you're willing to call them not 'anti-AGWers' but 'ignoramuses'.
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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby of the way » Tue Jun 10, 2014 10:04 pm UTC

With all of the misinformation out there regarding climate change, I think people deserve better than to be called 'ignoramuses'.

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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby Izawwlgood » Tue Jun 10, 2014 10:28 pm UTC

of the way wrote:With all of the misinformation out there regarding climate change, I think people deserve better than to be called 'ignoramuses'.
Can you point to some misinformation? One of the extremely common and obnoxious tactics you'll find in AGW deniers is promoting this notion of there being misinformation. Or that there isn't a scientific consensus. Because there's a 'debate amongst climate scientists'. Or that they know a scientist who totally doesn't believe in AGW. Or that we just need to present both sides of the matter.

In short, it's the same sort of denialism drivel you see in other denialists. Anti-vaxers love drumming up horseshit about just suggesting we do another study. Or that they knew a doctor who found research that we need to reconsider. Whatever; these tactics to promote and sow misinformation, often by suggesting there is misinformation, is horseshit.
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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby RMc » Tue Jun 10, 2014 10:39 pm UTC

Here, I'll float a question to you; what do YOU think will convince people that their denialism is incorrect?


Well, for starters, I wouldn't refer to their beliefs as "denialism" which are invariably "incorrect". That gets you nowhere.

To answer the larger question, "How do we make the pro-AGW viewpoint more popular by convincing people that our view is the correct one?", I don't know. Americans tend to be rather suspicious of those who say, "The science is settled, so fork over your cash, tubby!" You're not going to stop the US and other developed countries from enjoying the good life, and you're certainly not going to prevent developing countries from wanting the same thing.

Somebody up there called the idea of AGW being solved by future technology "an adolescent fantasy", and maybe that's true. I sure as hell hope not. It may be our only shot.

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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby of the way » Tue Jun 10, 2014 10:45 pm UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:
of the way wrote:With all of the misinformation out there regarding climate change, I think people deserve better than to be called 'ignoramuses'.
Can you point to some misinformation? One of the extremely common and obnoxious tactics you'll find in AGW deniers is promoting this notion of there being misinformation. Or that there isn't a scientific consensus. Because there's a 'debate amongst climate scientists'. Or that they know a scientist who totally doesn't believe in AGW. Or that we just need to present both sides of the matter.

In short, it's the same sort of denialism drivel you see in other denialists. Anti-vaxers love drumming up horseshit about just suggesting we do another study. Or that they knew a doctor who found research that we need to reconsider. Whatever; these tactics to promote and sow misinformation, often by suggesting there is misinformation, is horseshit.


I should've known better than to open my mouth on the internet. I didn't want to get into a debate, otherwise I would've put more in my initial post than a one liner filled with imagery. Although I fully understand how it probably sounded to you.

I'd say if nothing else, misinformation about misinformation would qualify.

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Re: 1379: "4.5 Degrees"

Postby cwDeici » Tue Jun 10, 2014 10:58 pm UTC

Some people are actually saying we need to end industrialization? I guess I saw that somewhere and responses to it.

Ugh... that's very roughly at the level of saying firewood is an efficient fuel or that most people should die to keep emissions down.


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