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2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #35

Posted on 29 August 2020 by John Hartz

A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week: Sun, Aug 23, 2020 through Sat, Aug 30, 2020

Editor's Choice

Fridays for Future: how the young climate movement has grown since Greta Thunberg’s lone protest

Greta Thunberg

 1000 Words/Shutterstock

At the end of her first week on strike in August 2018, Greta Thunberg handed out flyers that said: “You grownups don’t give a shit about my future.” Her appearance at the 2019 UN Climate Summit capped a year in the spotlight for the teenage climate activist. Delegates at the summit gave her a standing ovation, but the sound of their applause couldn’t mask Greta Thunberg’s deep frustration.

“This is all wrong,” she said. “I shouldn’t be up here … yet you all come to us young people for hope. How dare you!”

Everything from posters to children’s picture books have captured the inspiring example of Thunberg’s bravery and determination. But adults, even supportive ones, still shirk the opportunity to really pay attention to the remarkable movement she is a part of – its history, its present and its visions for the future.

In doing so, they miss the significance of the last two years. The climate strike movement has grown into a network of global campaigns focused on systemic change to tackle the climate crisis. In the process, young people have outgrown the mainstream environmental movement. They don’t want recognition in the world of today. They want a new world, and they are building it. 

Click here to access the entire article originally posted on The Conversation UK website.

Fridays for Future: how the young climate movement has grown since Greta Thunberg’s lone protest by Benjamin Bowman, The Conversation UK, Aug 28, 2020

Articles Linked to on Facebook

Sun, Aug 23, 2020

Mon, Aug 24, 2020

Tue, Aug 25, 2020

Wed Aug 26, 2020

Thu Aug 27, 2020

Fri Aug 28, 2020

Sat Aug 29, 2020

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Comments 1 to 46:

  1. A cornerstone of Greta's message is the extinction of "up to 200 species going extinct every single day" as in her climate change TEDx talk (at 4 min). Elsewhere this is often "150 to 200 species". There may be over 130,000 web pages expressing up to 200 species per day going extinct from climate change if this search using quotes (to require each term) is really indicative of it: "climate" "200 species" "extinct" "day".

    So, the source of the information should be available as a peer reviewed paper. These are related results of research, the best science of the day by the most prestigious scientific experts in the field, and it's all I have so far.

    Does anyone know how to check whether the items that are scientific papers were peer reviewed? And/or by whom? Also does anyone know the source of the 200 species figure by Greta Thunberg? I imagine it was around 1996-1997 by some famous scientists. Do appreciate any help.

    2004, UN Environment Programme, TUNZA for YOUTH
      ... "It is estimated that between 150 and 200 species become extinct every day"
      ... No citation or reference. Page removed in 2009.
    1997, , ,
      ... "150 to 200 species"
      ... "World Bank and Worldwatch Institute, and reported to the Rio+5 conference in 1997, estimated 150 to 200 species of life become extinct every 24 hours"
    1997, J. John Sepkoski, Jr., Biodiversity: Past, Present, and Future,
      ... "range to 150 species etinctions per day (Ehrlich and Wilson, 1991)" [extinctions typo in paper],
      ... although Sepkoski adds "[total species] figure is misleading, however, because no official list of described species exists"
    1991, PAUL R. EHRLICH, EDWARD 0. WILSON, Biodiversity Studies: Science and Policy
      ... no mention of extinctions per day as Sepkoski said.
    1989, WV Reid K Miller, Keeping options alive: the scientific basis for conserving biodiversity
      ... "potential loss of" ... "50 to 150 species per day". Contains "climate change" 27 times.
    1989, WALTER V. REID, How many species will there be?
      ... "potential loss of" ... "50 to 150 species per day". Included in a larger IUCN report containing "climate change" 11 times.
      ... "An estimated 25 percent of the world's species present in the mid-1980s may be extinct by the year 2015".
    1988, E.O. Wilson, Harvard University, Biodiversity
      ... "By the end of this century [year 2000], our planet could lose anywhere from 20 to 50% of its species (Table 6–1)"

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  2. gseattle @1,

    I would recommend Google Scholar where a few searches will surely throw up some of the literature, which of course will yield further references & on Google Scholar a list of papers citing any 'finds'.

    I note Pimm et al (2014) 'The biodiversity of species and their rates of extinction, distribution, and protection'  who calculate current rates of extinction of known species in terms of extinctions per million species per year. Note that the number of species is a problem (there are perhaps 8.7 million terrestrial species) and that the cause of a recorded extinction is not always AGW which has been running for a far shorter period than the extinction data. So digging out a global number relevant to today's AGW will not be a simple 'look-up' in the appropriate bit of literature. Best of luck.

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  3. Per gseattle's question, a casual search finds that Thunberg's Twitter feed of early last year references a draft report from IPBES. 

    You can find IPBES and a complete description of methods and practice here:

    The document is here:

    In that we read:

    An average of around 25 per cent of species in assessed animal and plant
    groups are threatened (Figure SPM.3), suggesting that around 1 million species already face extinction, many within decades, unless action is taken to reduce the intensity of drivers of biodiversity loss. Without such action, there will be a further acceleration in the global rate of species extinction, which is already at least tens to hundreds of times higher than it has averaged over the past 10 million years.

    I've not gone to the full report to see if any of the underlying material specifically establishes a numeric loss rate but it seems a matter of simple arithmetic to produce the number Thunberg mentions.

    The "1996-1997" conjecture as to Thunberg's figure sourcing isn't accurate and isn't even a particularly good rhetorical tactic. Given the time needed to assemble the spurious list leading up to that, surely energy could be better spent? 

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  4. This paper from 2014 states "Current rates of extinction are about 1000 times the background rate of extinction. These are higher than previously estimated and likely still underestimated"



    But for me the scariest figure comes from the 2018 WWF Living Planet Index 2018 report produced  in association with the Zoological Society of London

    "The main statistic from the report is the global LPI which shows a 60% decline between 1970 and 2014 (Figure 1). This means that, on average, animal populations are well under half the size they were in 1970."

    This report is produced one every two years. I expect the 2020 report to be equally dismally distrurbing.

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    Moderator Response:

    [RH] Shortened link.

  5. Found an earlier 200 species claim, seems to be the first ever:

    1995, Adam Rogers of United Nations, [Book] Taking action: An environmental guide for you and your community
    ... "every 24 hours, an estimated 150 to 200 species of life become extinct" (in the preface)
    ... No citation or reference.

    Didn't find a formula at ipbes, still trying to locate clear species estimate models. The creators of one model, Stephen Hubbell and Fangliang He … wrote in 2011: “extinction rates overestimate extinction”. That’s an understatement because the Rogers claim could have 1 in 5 extinct by now (over 1.8M) and IUCN says only 869 known extinct since 1500. Causes are always from the crush of humanity, hunting, pesticides etc, not climate.

    That book by Rogers mentions 'climate' 42 times but doesn't cite climate change in connection with extinctions, it says:

    The predominant causes for the loss of biodiversity and the degradation of biological resources include large-scale clearing and burning of forests, destruction of coral reefs, destructive fishing practices, overharvesting of plants and animals, the illegal trade in endangered species of wild fauna and flora, indiscriminate use of pesticides, draining and filling of wetlands, air pollution, and the conversion of wildlands to agricultural and urban uses.
    Many of these causes are themselves symptoms of much deeper problems. In many cases, the root causes for the loss of biodiversity are found in basic economic, demographic and political trends. These root causes include consumption and consequent market demands for commodities such as tropical hardwoods, wildlife, fibre and agricultural products. Population growth is another key factor [gseattle: Bingo!!] . The growing human population, even without proportional economic growth, places increasing demands on natural resources and ecosystem processes that are already impoverished and stressed. Settlement policies, such as those in Brazil, promote the movement of the growing unemployed labor forces to frontier regions.

    There are 150 new people on earth every MINUTE (even accounting for deaths) based on United Nations population estimate and 2050 projection. Tiny Bangladesh has more people than Russia. I'd suggest the best thing we can do to protect the climate is offer people $300 for voluntary sterilizations as a token thanks for caring about the planet. We're up against corporate boardrooms who lust for all those new consumers and care only about stock price going up.

    The grossly exaggerated extinction claims are not a sensible way to promote climate awareness, it is off-putting for people who think rather than just enjoy bathing in fear, it is criticized even by some who created models, has zero connection to reality, is wildly incorrect (a Yale article asks why), yet thanks in part to Greta, wound up in a blender with climate and has legs, parrot legs. Alarmists would like to be seen as the ones who are scientific but to do so, since the claim evidently was created out of thin air instead of a scientific paper, it would be wise to jettison it in the campaign, seriously, this is sound advice. The false connection with climate came into existence out of sloppy thinking and a dose of intellectual dishonesty. This is not hyperbole, emotion or speculation, I've gone through at least 93 scientific papers on climate, for example, many of them on species, and those are only the ones I've saved, I did my homework. Greta didn't.

    Those of you who visit this website, being thoughtful, now that you know these things, have an opportunity to nudge the climate campaign toward sanity. Greta is being mocked by around half of the top 100 videos about her, it doesn't have to be that way, but she must be corrected, informed of this and make herself willing to re-align with truth, she should apologize publicly, confess, concede that point, she's falsely scaring people with that bogus distraction away from real problems. I want her to grow up to be someone we can trust.

    In summary, the 200 species extinct per day claim is 100% nonsense, an embarrassing mockery of real science.

    Be nice, let your weapons be scientific facts.

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  6. I think its unfair to blame Greta for quoting a number of species extinctions that is an often quoted number in reputable publications, and she did not say it was all caused by climate change.

    This number of 150 - 200 species going extinct per day is based on modelling, and the modelling may be flawed as in this BBC article. That said, the article suggests the correct number is still very high.

    And I think its important to realise it takes a lot to make a species completely 100% extinct, and is very hard to measure such a thing in the real world, but we do know with good certainty that many species are on the brink of exinction or with very low numbers, so they have to be protected, and so are of no immediate use to humanity and are very vulnerable to extinction. This is almost as worrying as extinction.

    In other words lets not split hairs and lose sight of the fact that human activities are having a massive negative impact on the biosphere and climate.

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  7. gseattle: Have you shared you concerns with Ms Thunberg? (I doubt she will see them here on this comment thead.)  

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  8. Not yet bc I don't know how to contact Greta, would if I could, she's on facebook but I dropped fb. If she started seeing people in numbers saying hey, where's the science on that, it seems to me the only likely way she would take note of it.

    Tricky to talk about, one risks being seen as not caring about the environment, and it's all so complex, but the only way we can solve anything is being willing to open our eyes to the real problem, the extra 150 new people on earth every minute [1]. Currently the message is: Oh no, our CO2 is destroying this world. But our CO2 portion of the increase is only 1/20th of 1 part per million per year. [2]

    For anyone interested, today I ran into this free paper providing an overview of the various extinction models: Emergence of a sixth mass extinction? John C Briggs 2017 Oxford Still trying to wrap my head around the methods and find an actual complete formula.

    [1] 150 new people on the planet every minute based on United Nations population numbers and projection for 2050.

    [2] NASA: 1880 to 2020 CO2 increased from 291 ppm to 414 ppm = +123 ppm. 123 / 140 years = .88 ppm average per year. 95 percent come from natural sources. Therefore our CO2 is .88 ppm x .05 = only .04 ppm per year average. That's why NOAA pointed out the covid shutdown didn't make a dent in CO2 levels at Mauna Loa Observatory, because nature's portion is so vast.

    So our part of the CO2 increase is only 4 hundredths of 1 part per million per year. And the temperature increase is only 0.0071 degrees C average per year over 140 years, based on total 1.0 C (NASA). And there is no known species extinct from those tiny changes underlying climate change, instead only 869 total since 1500 and all due to the crush of humanity, hunting, new farmland, pesticides etc (IUCN), or .58 species per year.

    Everyone can agree .58/yr (actual) is less than 73,000/yr at 200 per day (imagined).

    Thank you kindly for that BBC article Nigel, I wasn't aware of it. Says this for example, and might a key to what went so wildly wrong:

    Hubbell's point is that if you increase a habitat by, say, five hectares, and your calculations show that you expect there to be five new species in those five hectares, it is wrong to assume that reversing the model, and shrinking your habitat, eliminates five species.

    The full version of this has a formula and I don't understand it yet: Species–area relationships always overestimate extinction rates from habitat loss, Stephen P. Hubbell and Fangliang He, 2013, Nature

    [links are all designated to open in a new tab or window]

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  9. gseattle @8

    "[2] NASA: 1880 to 2020 CO2 increased from 291 ppm to 414 ppm = +123 ppm. 123 / 140 years = .88 ppm average per year. 95 percent come from natural sources. Therefore our CO2 is .88 ppm x .05 = only .04 ppm per year average. "

    You are very mistaken in your conclusion. The page you link to says: "Die Welt presented a common number-trick (deception, nonsense) by climate deniers, (as follows): In fact, carbon dioxide, which is blamed for climate warming, has only a volume share of 0.04 percent in the atmosphere. And of these 0.04 percent CO2, 95 percent come from natural sources, such as volcanoes or decomposition processes in nature. The human CO2 content in the air is thus only 0.0016 percent........"

    The 95% carbon dioxide added by natural sources is largely from the biosphere, and volcanoes etcetera and has been largely constant over the last 100 years and is absorbed back into natural carbon sinks, so it cannot explain the increase from 291 ppm to 414 ppm. Only human activities like burning fossil fuels and deforestation explain it, because these has been ever increasing activities, and not all the CO2 is absorbed back into carbon sinks. If you refer to the list of climate myths on this website page at the side,  you will find some detailed explanations.

    "That's why NOAA pointed out the covid shutdown didn't make a dent in CO2 levels at Mauna Loa Observatory, because nature's portion is so vast."

    No that is not the reason. NOAA are saying the effects of covid on CO2 levels cant be detected atmospherically because they are masked by the quite large cyclical variation of CO2 you get within one or two years due to seasonal changes and el nino. If the covid shutdown went on for say 5 years you would see a change in atmospheric levels.

    So you have misinterpreted things quite badly.

    I agree population growth is a problem in terms of virtually all environmental impacts, but I think that manipulating this trend is unlikely to do much to stop either the climate change problem or species extinction, as follows. Population started to slow since the 1960s as countries have entered the demographic transition which has favoured smaller families, and as governments have sometimes pushed population growth rates down deliberately. There may be more that can be done to slow population growth, but it would seem unlikely that people will stop having children and more likely that they might settle on 1 - 2 chidren.

    This means the population trends still lead to about 9 billion people or so by the end of this century, so this would not have any significant effect on slowing down the climate problem or biodiversity loss, this century anyway. And by then the damage will have been done. 

    So its important we change our sources of energy, and reduce deforestation and change how we farm.

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  10. Well shucks, I disagree on misinterpreting anything but now I have to make a bunch of clarifications, my fault not for the reason one might think, it was a tactical error to use that website, confusion, the human CO2 portion is still 5% or less. I'll explain.

    First, I'd say even if population suddenly became 4 billion, climate would continue changing but extinctions would reduce, with fewer species at risk because extinctions are directly due to more people.

    CO2 is not killing creatures, climate is not killing creatures, people are killing creatures with guns, traps, bulldozers, dams, pesticides et al.

    U.N. says 11 billion by 2100, no?  So why did my friend state it not as 11 but only 9? What's the source? Mine is the U.N.

    Yes deforestation is bad and that's a fine point to make but that's due to the new 150 people per minute for needed farmland because those new people need to eat, the extra people are the root cause being ignored and the cause of extinctions.
    Everyone can read what NOAA said on covid and decide for themselves.

    I too considered Die Welt to be wrong back when I saw that. They multiplied .04 x .05 and got .0016 instead of .0020. But my math doesn't come from it, their .04 is not my .04. And the .04% part of theirs is true. Last I saw, NOAA's CO2 is 414 ppm which is .000414 or .0414%, or rounded .04%. My ".88 ppm average per year" is not in dispute to my knowledge. Is it? 123/140=.88. My statement "our CO2 is .88 ppm x .05 = only .04 ppm per year average" is not a trick, it is simple math. Actually is .044. Therefore the way to criticize my point is to focus on that reasoning, under a scalpel.

    Additional info on 95% natural CO2 ... The trouble is, I can't find IPCC, NOAA or NASA openly stating the percent anthropogenic CO2, in fact just about everyone official seems to want to avoid damaging the narrative by openly stating a percentage. If human CO2 were big they would shout it out, they are not shy. My numbers were based on a source somewhere else I forgot to make note of, seemed acceptable as a source bc it was decrying the horrors of CO2, 38 Gt human and 770 Gt natural, or 0.04935 human. I rounded that up to 5%. Is there a source saying human CO2 right now is a lot more than 5%? If so, somebody please show it. This alarmist said 36 / 750 (4.8%) and cited this but I don't see those numbers there. skepticalscience: 29/750 (an even smaller human portion, 3.9% in one place)  Some claim human is only 3%, some even 2%, forbes even 1%, I doubt those. I'd like to know where people's numbers are coming from. Either way, I think I am being generous to your side using 5% since other sources have lower human CO2 figures.

    So the fact that human CO2 is 5% or lower appears to be indisputable.

    Going at it a different way: I read all human CO2 since the industrial revolution is 1370 gigatons total. Is this right or wrong? If right, then converting to ppm, it is only 177 ppm total over 140 years. I was surprised to find that out, hard to believe. So let's do a thought experiment:
    Assume all 177 ppm human CO2 remained in the atmosphere over the last 140 years.
    Then of today's 414 ppm, 237 ppm of that would have to be from nature. (414 - 177 = 237)
    Original was 291.
    Increase is 123.
    But human total over time is 177, higher than 123.
    Ergo, by pure logic, something is causing even natural CO2 in the air to rise.

    So natural CO2 has gone up. Does that not mean some sort of factor is being badly missed? Should we not care?

    The most logical explanation for increasing natural CO2 would be ocean slowing, AMOC slowing for example. Tons of science on it. Not on the public radar, should be. You can say natural CO2 from melting glaciers and fresh water causing ocean slowing. Or it could have all been set in motion by ... "Over the last 200 years, the magnetic field [of Earth] has lost around 9% of its strength (ESA)".

    But the editor's highlight on this page is Greta. I'm focusing on her achilles heel hoping to heal it. I want her respected with a great future, not mocked. So the more important point is, quoting what I said:

    "... no known species extinct from those tiny changes underlying climate change, instead only 869 total since 1500 and all due to the crush of humanity, hunting, new farmland, pesticides etc (IUCN), or .58 species per year.
    Everyone can agree .58/yr (actual) is less than 73,000/yr at 200 per day (imagined)"

    Summary: Greta Thunberg needs to drop that silly '200 extinct species per day' or 73,000 per year, it has no basis, a mockery of science, reduces team climate awareness numbers, I think even average people sense it is ridiculous. Best to distance yourselves from it by speaking against it. Future humans will look back wondering who on earth ever thought that fantasy was a good idea. I'm sorry this msg was so lengthy.

    Solution: What Greta should do is focus instead on living, threatened species, a number people can understand.

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    Moderator Response:

    [DB]  Off-topic and sloganeering snipped.  Please up your game and cite reputable sources, in-context.

  11. Gseattle @10 ,

    you are talking nonsense [ auf Deutsch = Unsinn ] if you assert that only 5% of the growth of atmospheric CO2 since pre-industrial times is caused by humans.  That shows you lack an understanding of reality.

    Please go and read Most Used Climate Myths 34  (accessed via the top left corner of this page).   When you have educated yourself in that basic science, then perhaps you will be better placed to comment on more complex questions ~ such as the rate of species extinction.

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  12. Gseattle @8 & @10,

    You venture into consideration of atmospheric CO2, a subject area in which  you evidently have very little understanding.  I would add that levels of atmospheric CO2 are not directly a factor in the rate of species extinctions.

    The pre-industrial atmosphere contained some 280ppm CO2. The increase from 280ppm to today's 412ppm (this a current annual global average) is almost wholly directly due to human emissions. The rate of increase in CO2 has been accelerating through the industrial period and is now running at +2.5ppm/year.

    I don't recognise the numbers you present for (what I assume you consider to be) accumulative anthropogenic CO2 emissions in that @10 you talk of 1,370Gt and this being in some way equivalent to 177ppm.

    The Global Carbon Project assess anthropogenic emissions from Fossil Fuels since 1750 as 441Gt(C) = 1,617Gt(CO2). If such a quantity of CO2 were added to the atmosphere it would increase atmospheric concentrations by 207ppm.

    Additional to FF emissions are the anthropogenic emissions from Land Use Change. The Global Carbon Project assess these LUC emissions back to 1850 and thus arrive at a total for anthropogenic CO2 emissions (FF + LUC) of 645Gt(C) = 2,361Gt(CO2), a quantity which would increase atmospheric levels 303ppm if added to the atmosphere.

    Global Carbon Project assess the level of CO2 in the atmosphere resulting from human activities through the industrial period amounts to 277Gt(C) = 1,106Gt(CO2) and which would (and indeed does) increase CO2 levels by 130ppm. The ocean & land sinks that have drawn CO2 from the atmosphere through the industrial period are show to account for the difference between the all-emissions 303ppm & the emissions-plus-sinks 130ppm.

    None of this atmospheric CO2 business is in any way controversial outside the febrile and ridiculous reasonings of climate chage deniers. As the RealClimate item you reference @8 proclaims:-

    "The basic facts about the global increase of CO2 in our atmosphere are clear and established beyond reasonable doubt."

    For reasons that cannot be explained by me, you chose to ignore this message and instead choose to quote from a piece of climate denial being debunked by the RealClimate item.

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  13. Gseattle @13 ,

    It appears you have not read the information available here in Climate Myth Number 34.   And you have not read information provided by the IPCC.

    Instead, your quotation about the IPCC  "[which] agrees human CO2 is only 5 percent [etcetera]"  . . .  is taken from a website by the science-denier Mr (or Dr? ) Ed Berry.   Sorry, Gseattle, but that statement by Ed Berry is carefully designed to mislead those (such as yourself) who are ill-informed and have given little thought to the CO2 situation.

    Berry is trying to deceive you (and at the same time deceive himself).  Berry is not a climate scientist ~ he is one of those intelligent crackpots who are little better than Flat-Earthers.

    Gseattle, if you are serious about educating yourself, then start by reading Climate Myth Number 34.   Then you will begin to understand why Ed Berry's climate arguments are of the "nutcase" type.

    And you might finally grasp why your own CO2 assertions are based upon a fundamental logical error ~ you have confused CO2 accumulation with CO2 inflow/outfow ( = flux ) .   Which is rather like a businessman who has confused profit with turnover.  

    In short, please take your CO2 comments to Myth 34 thread.    (Where it will be On-Topic. )

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  14. gseattle @13,

    You are quoting the fake scientific paper of a climate change denier to misrepresent the IPCC. The denier and the IPCC do not reach any significant 'agreement'. Indeed, the denier shows this. You do not.

    You quote the first sentence of the abstract yet the second sentence is entirely wrong. Barry (2019) Human CO2 Emissions Have Little Effect on Atmospheric CO2 which begins its abstract saying:-

    "The United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) agrees human CO2 is only 5 percent and natural CO2 is 95 percent of the CO2 inflow into the atmosphere. The ratio of human to natural CO2 in the atmosphere must equal the ratio of the inflows. Yet IPCC claims human CO2 has caused all the rise in atmospheric CO2 above 280 ppm, which is now 130 ppm or 32 percent of today's atmospheric CO2." [My bold]

    The IPCC would give the size of the natural 'inflows' of CO2 into the atmosphere over a year as being roughly 210Gt(C). And the IPCC would give the 'inflows' of anthropogenic CO2 today as being roughly 10Gt(C). So the ratio between these two numbers is roughly 5%. Yet it is not a very informative value. And do note that the second sentence in that abstract is flat wrong.

    210Gt(C) would raise atmospheric CO2 by roughly 100ppm. With the annual CO2 cycle in the atmosphere showing a peak-to-peak value of just 5ppm, it is obvious that there are 'outflows' operating to balance these natural 'inflows'. And year-to-year, with the variation in the pre-industrial CO2 level pretty-much flat, it is evident that the natural inflows & outflows balance almost perfectly.

    Holocene CO2 levels

    Through the industrial period, the rising CO2 levels is entirely due to anthropogenic emissions. And the rising CO2 has also increased the natural 'outflows' so that today about 55% of anthropogenic emissions are diverted out of the atmosphere by natural processes. This includes 'outflows' into the ocean which are evident by increasing ocean acidity. Thus it is not 100% of the CO2 rise that is man-made but 220%.


    You balk at the spreadsheet data presented by the Global Carbon Project (linked @12) and instead present a tertiary reference to another spreadsheet which is almost ten years out-of-date (so add about 300Gt(CO2) to the values given for today's values) and now provides broken links to its data sources. The 1,374Gt(CO2) value for FF 1850-2011  concurs with the GCP value which gives 1,364Gt(CO2). The 1,832Gt(CO2) value "to end of 2010" is not so obvious but presumably includes LUC emissions. (Note, unlike pre-1850 FF emissions, pre-1850 LUC emissions are significant if included.)

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    Moderator Response:


    Michael Sweet has kindly provided a link to Climate Myth #34, which you can see on the Recent Comments page, but the comment is on the Climate Myth #34 thread.

    Here is a link to Michael's comment. Please take further discussion to that thread.

  15. I inadvertently deleted the following post:

    gseattle at 15:36 PM on 5 September 2020 

    What is the human percent CO2 percentage? As shown (and ignored), sources seem to range 1% to 5%. I went with the apparent maximum estimate, 5%. This says "The United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) agrees human CO2 is only 5 percent and natural CO2 is 95 percent of the CO2 inflow into the atmosphere". But the source?

    It is invalid to deny science and claim CO2's jump from 1880 can only be human. The reason for this is because of the massive effect of the ocean sink together with ocean slowing over the last 200 years now being studied. The ocean is said to store 50 to 60 times the CO2 of air but its capacity has diminished. Shown above, the air CO2 rise from 1880 is partly from nature, no other way to explain it.

    "The oceans as a whole have a large capacity for absorbing CO2, but ocean mixing is too slow to have spread this additional CO2 deep into the ocean. As a result, ocean waters deeper than 500 meters (about 1,600 feet) have a large but still unrealized absorption capacity, said Scripps geochemist Ralph Keeling".

    IPCC: "oceans [...] contain roughly 50 times the quantity of carbon currently contained in the atmosphere". In the past, it was considered 60 times (see Arhrenius, Callendar and/or Revelle).

    This has the highest estimate I could find for total anthropogenic CO2 in gigatons since the industrial revolution. The number should be 1374 rather than 1370.

    Doha infographic gets the numbers wrong, underestimates human emissions

    If there's a higher number somewhere, a link to a specific page containing it would be helpful. I always like to use numbers that will favor the side of anyone who might want to argue the point when reasonable, and web pages they can like, when possible. Except in the case of 200 species per day, which is 100% unscientific.

    This says 1 ppm CO2 per 7.77 Gt for the calculation. (James Hansen)

    NASA: 291 ppm in 1880

    NOAA: 414 latest (NOAA's measurement while NASA's 2020 value is lower and just a model). Another source might be, daily, etc.

    Unfortunately couldn't find the string "Most Used Climate Myths" anywhere on this domain, perhaps use a direct link instead. MA found 1,617Gt (CO2) in Global Carbon Project, there's an xls file on the page at that link, seven tabs, perhaps he calculated it, didn't say, a description/walkthrough of the intended process may help. Reading further at realclimate on that large page, author stefan vilifies 5%, implying he knows, and then places it at 110% "the best estimate for the anthropogenic share of global warming since 1950 is 110 percent" and the source offered is another page written by stefan which cites his source as a Tweet by Gavin Schmidt which points to a 2015 Bloomberg article which does not provide any value for human vs natural CO2 at all. Typical confusion. Curiously, no one corrected .58 above, it should be 1.67/yr (still less than Greta's up to 73,000/yr). Numerous points made by gseattle have gone unopposed, they have to logically be regarded as likely solid logic and scientifically sound unless eventually opposed using science (rather than scorn). The message everywhere from climate alarmists when presented with facts seems to be, you must believe or we're going to get mad and use ridicule/scorn. Information being treated like blasphemy, that's anti-scientific.

    No, really, be kind to opponents on this thought-battlefield and let your weapons be scientific facts, actual content with references in a calm way. Ad hominem is not science. Attempts to devalidate an opponent by labeling one as bad or wrong or not understanding anything isn't science nor educational to any who might read this in generations to come, nor correct. The chances are very good if any of us knew each other personally we could get along just fine and like and respect each other even with differences of opinion, all of my friends are wrong about everything and I still love them (a bit of levity there, in case it isn't obvious that was nervous humor, pending copyright).

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  16. Gseattle @ #13  (now recently shuffled to #15 )

    the Climate Myths you are looking for, have a prominent link just below the top left corner of this page; of the Home page; and indeed of almost every page of this website.

    see :-  MOST USED ... Climate Myths       ( in bright red ink)

    And it is worth repeating ~ the Dr Ed Berry you have mentioned via your earlier link, is completely misrepresenting the scientific facts.  His climate ideas are wacky pseudo-science.   As far as I know, he may be a fine gentleman . . . kind to children . . . generous to charities . . . but his arithmetic on atmospheric CO2 is crazy-wrong.   A sad case, to be sure!   Even worse ~ there's a strong suspicion he's getting the science wrong deliberately  (it is hard to believe someone with his tertiary degrees could get it so very wrong accidentally ).  And I am sorry to see he has misled you with his nonsense.   But never too late for you ~ you can go to Climate Myth 34 thread, and learn the real science.

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  17. Ah, got it. Thanks for the explanation. I'm red-green colorblind, can barely tell the difference between this and this so that's part of the confusion over that, had no idea it was a link. Military said the red-green thing is in 1/10th of whyte males some time ago. Plus it didn't seem to turn up on Google for some reason: "Most Used Climate Myths"  ... Sorry for that problem.

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  18. In the Comment policy it says: "If you think our debunking of one of those myths is in error,

    you are welcome to discuss that on the relevant thread".

    Unfortunately I need to bring this up, I'd prefer to discuss it by email but I emailed John and didn't hear back.

    A portion of what I wrote above was deleted by moderator DB. At minimum, I need to know what portion was supposedly sloganeering. His comment was not specific but I think it might have been the idea that some of my text is presumably covered in #34 but I can't find mention of amoc or slowing there. Can I be allowed to know what I said was considered bad?

    To summarize it, I mentioned that part--and I believe I used links but it's deleted now--like to the European Space Agency (ESA) on that, and then brought it right back to Greta, saying basically I want her message to be as sound as possible, expressing my well-wishes "I want her respected with a great future", and then I went back to the species question which is always a cornerstone of her message, I wrote some words to try to spur your community into presenting a scientific paper for the species claim, I showed IUCN's official extinction numbers, and then I suggested a route forward for Greta which I'm afraid to repeat now since it was deleted, I thought it was a pretty reasonable idea.

    The moderator DB said:

    [DB] Off-topic and sloganeering snipped. Please up your game and cite reputable sources, in-context.

    That's quite a set of sins there and I don't understand what I presumably did wrong your honor.

    The other thing is I am always trying to be civil, the Comment policy disallows ad hominem, critique of another person's motives, labels such as "denier", and an inflammatory tone, so I'm wondering, why are they allowed to violate those terms against me continuously above?

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  19. gseattle @18

    The best way to get in touch with Skeptical Science is via the "Contact Us" link shown at the bottom of each page. One of us will see your message in our inbox and either respond or forward it as needed.

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  20. Gseattle @18 ,

    in your final paragraph, re Comments Policy, you seem to be misunderstanding the ordinary meaning of words.

    For instance : where science is being discussed, the label "denier" is an accurate description of someone who promulgates untruths i.e. who asserts statements contrary to well-established facts

    e.g. statements that evolution does not occur

    . . . and that the Earth is Flat

    . . . and rapid global warming is not occurring  (or that it is not primarily human-caused; or that it is happening only to an insignificant extent; or that CO2 has little or no Greenhouse radiative effect; and so on. )

    You will also see similar labels such as Denialist or science-denier or climate-science-denier or climate-denier and suchlike.  The meaning of these terms is very clear ~ and in a "hard sciences" area like climatology, it is very easy to see who is a scientist and who is a pseudo-scientist.  (Here I would emphasize the definition of a scientist as someone who thinks scientifically full-time, rather than part-time.)

    The attribution of "another person's motives"  for being anti-scientific, is usually best avoided, for we humans have complex brains and attitudes, often involving a Gordian Knot of tangled motives and emotions (some contradictory, some subconscious & unknown even to the possessor of anti-scientific views). 

    Perhaps, Gseattle, you have not recognized the psychological condition Motivated Reasoning ~ where an otherwise-intelligent person is driven by his emotional biases, to deny plain scientific evidence, and to use his intelligence to concoct all sorts of spurious reasons for denying well-established mainstream science.

    Your man Dr Ed Berry (that you introduced in an earlier post) is a prime example of a Denier.  Possibly a nice guy . . . possibly very correct in some other areas of science/engineering . . . but WRT the highly-important field of AGW/Climate science, he is a Denier.   And it is efficient useful and proper, that we call a Spade a Spade.

    In most cases, we can't be certain of the motives of climate-deniers.  Some are crackpots, who can't think straight, but have a weird obsessive bee in their bonnet . . . though without an obvious political-extremist association.   Others are simply "financial" shills who are paid to propagandize untruths & misleading half-truths.   Some have extreme personality traits of anger and selfishness (you will see many of this sort on denialist website comments columns).

    And some are in the very early stages of dementia from age, cranial arteriosclerosis, alcohol, etcetera  ~ this can be the case with those elderly once-famous scientists who come to develop a Galileo Complex where they fancy that they can newly take up the science of climatology . . . and demonstrate how all the world's expert  climate scientists are grossly mistaken!   Amusing, but sad ~ so perhaps I shouldn't mention here some of the prominent names you will see associated with propaganda organisations such as Heartland and GWPF.

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  21. (continued)

    Gseattle @18 ,

    you should look up the definition of Ad Hominem Argument ~ you seem confused about its meaning.   And with particular regard to the egregious Dr Ed Berry whom I mentioned again in post #16 :- if you read carefully, you will see I did not denigrate his arguments because of his imperfect (or perfect?) personal traits . . . but I denigrated them as being plainly wrong.

    And the more intelligent a Denier is, the more he uses "Doublethink" to deceive himself that he is right ~ even when part of his brain knows he is plainly wrong.   That's bad in itself ~ and even worse when he sets out (intentionally or otherwise) to grossly mislead the readers of his statements.

    Gseattle, my apologies for my long postings . . . yet you may find the contents educational.

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  22. The author's middle initial of Ed Berry is X, seems ominous.

    What's one of the most plainly wrong of his arguments?

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  23. Gseattle , best if you exert yourself to making genuine points of argument, rather than use empty rhetoric (which is something that Moderators tend to zap).     [ And yes, I do enjoy posting on this thread! ]

    It would be helpful to readers (and possibly to yourself) if you clarified the underlying problem you have with Greta Thunberg.

    Looking at the bigger picture : it sounds dramatic to say "200 species extinct every day".    How accurate is that? ~ quite probably it is accurate enough for practical purposes (of guiding our actions).

    Why probably? : well, there are many millions of species . . . and millions more of species which are not yet discovered/identified.   The ecological balance has been tilted against these species, and so it is hardly surprising that you get a dramatic answer if you divide a very large Numerator by thousands of days.

    We already know even prior to the current major warming . . . that the expanding human population has tilted the balance strongly ~ thanks to de-forestation, extensive agriculture, over-grazing, pesticide usage, etcetera etcetera.    And we know from the paleo evidence, that the comparable rapid warming episodes of the past have caused massive extinctions.

    IOW : at present, the plants & animals are being hit by a "Double Whammy".    So you should not be surprised at the level of extinctions per day.   And there seems little point in you arguing whether the "200 per day" might only be "100 per day".

    The major concern is ~ What should be be done about these changes in the real physical world?   Should we sadly shake our heads, and sit on our hands?   Should we engage in a game of Trivial Pursuit, and spend our time discoursing about "200" or "50" or "100" ?    Or should we look at the bigger picture, and avoid distractions, and take intelligent action?

    What is your choice, Gseattle ?

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  24. Gseattle @22, the link you post from is part of a very politicised website. The link you post is also not convincing. Its full of basic misunderstandings so the maths ends up proving nothing.

    I will try to explain this in my own words and keep it simplified. What actually happens is natural sources of CO2 largely exist in a balanced equilibrium with nature where emissions are absorbed by natural sinks, on decade to decade time framnes. For example the photosynthesis cycle. The paleo record shows all this, so its settled science. So CO2 stays largely constant in the atmosphere on decadal time scales.

    Now sometimes things get out of balance if there is a sudden source of emissions and CO2 builds up in the atmosphere for example a truly  huge volcanic eruption (these are uncommon) , or as part of the ice age cycle, so atmospheric CO2 increases on decades to centuries time scales. Again we know this from the paleo record. Eventually this reverses very long term as CO2 is absorbed by rock weathering processes,  so you get balance again and no run away increase.

    Over the last 100 years or so natural sources of CO2 have been in balanced equilibrium. There has been no build up in the atmosphere from natural sources. The build up in CO2 cannot be explained by natural causes. Volcanic and geothermal activity has been stable. The slowing AMOC is not causing the oceans to release CO2. We know this because the oceans are acidifying, so absorbing CO2 - the excess CO2 from burning fossil fuels being the obvious explanation. The reversal of the earths magnetic field started well before the 100 year increase in CO2 so cannot be responsible. There is no plausible causative mechanism anyway.

    You dont even need any huge amount of science to figure these things out. Its just having a reasonable knowledge of the issues and some logical deduction. This is how I approach it.

    The increase in CO2 in the atmosphere over the last 100 or so years is not from "natural causes". Multiple lines of evidenc point to all this. You have been given explanations by MAR and references to read on this websites myths column by eclectic, based on peer reviewed published reasearch, and you ignore these, and  do not explain which elements you dispute, and  instead post something by "" which is not published research and author not identified. It suggests you just dont want to accept the possibility humans are  causing the increase in CO2.

    I think you need to ask yourself why you are doing all this. There is of course nothing wrong with healthy scepticism of scientific theories, but its silly to be sceptical when all the evidence points one way so convincingly, towards foosil fuels ebing the source of the CO2, and towards AGW, so the fact you continue to be sceptical suggests you either 1) simply do not understand or 2) are determined not to understand, perhaps being instead driven by some undeclared narrative whether political or conspiratorial or whatever. 

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  25. To nigelj @24, you might prefer the one at researchgate then:

    LINK to Google Scholar

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    Moderator Response:

    (BW) activated link

  26. gseattle @22,

    While I have no idea what the 'X' stands for, there is no doubt that Edwin X Berry is a real person. It is more "ominous" that he chooses to post his grand paper on as that shows a serious lack of judgement. Those PSI guys are serious nutcases who are actually of the opinion that AGW cannot be real because the theory breaks the Second Law of Thermodynmics (which in their version apparently says that a photon cannot travel from a cold place to a hot place, which would presumably make observing distant snow-topped mountains another impossibility).

    You appear to be asking for an explanation of why the detail of Berry's grand paper is so-much garbage (rather than why his conclusions cannot be correct).

    If you examine his grand model, it says no more than that the atmosphere is like a lake - the level of the water will go up if the input is greater than the output and visa versa (which is of course logical). And the output will be in some way dependent on the level - the higher the level, the more water will pour out of the outflows. He then creates a very simple mathematical interpretation of this situation which has little logic or physical basis.

    His model shows that with constant input, the CO2 level will tend to an equilibrium level logarithmically. Berry fails to consider that such a finding is entirely without basis for CO2 in the atmosphere as the outflows are pouring into volumes with their own constraints and are not free to accept ever-increasing quantities of CO2. Rather, the logarithmic relationship holds roughly for changes in volume, not changes of rate of volume.

    Yet the big error in his reasoning is to use his fancy model before trying to compare it with the real world situation. He uses it to conclude that the rate outflow which defines the level in his model can be aportioned and thus the level likewise. Thus, if 95% of the outflow is natural, then his model shows that 95% of the level must also be natural. The crazy logic this presents wold mean that in 1750 the influx of CO2 from ocean & biosphere would have been only 150Gt(C)/yr as this would support the pre-industrial CO2 level of 280ppm and since that time this natural influx would have risen 40% to reach today's 210Gt(C) which is required to support 390ppm in the atmosphere which is what Berry tells us is the natural component of atmosperic CO2.

    There is zero evidence for such a 40% natural rise in CO2 emission and no reason given for this natural rise occurring after ten millenia of flat CO2 levels, to magically appear in recent decades at just the time and the same rate as the anthropogenic input.

    Berry however, makes no attempt to check his model against reality. Instead he launches into a misrepresentation of actual modelling of atmospheric CO2 with an analysis with isotope data (which I have not examined but assume it is as crazy as the foregoing analyses).

    I hope this explanation of Berry's crazy theorising will suffice.

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  27. So you're saying all papers at researchgate are bad because they also published Berry's?

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  28. The inflamatory and judgemental terms you used, like garbage, crazy etc, literally make it difficult for my brain to be able to focus on the otherwise maybe pretty good content. The reason I'm attracted to science (and math) in the first place from a young age is for the absence of that type of thinking.

    I do appreciate that you cared to address content, restored my hope in humanity somewhat.

    There's a simpler overview by Dr. Berry here. I only ran across it because I was looking for any other scientists who might be criticizing his work. Could use some help finding any that might exist out there.

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  29. Gseattle , thank you for giving me a good laugh ~  with your re-rendering of some of my earlier commentaries at SkS.   You are a treasure.

    I hope the Moderators will leave your lengthy post untouched and unedited, for the entertainment of the general readership here at SkS.   Perhaps, in your haste to collect a bag full, you made one or two errors in quotation (not to mention a lack of context) . . . but hey, let's not quibble !    And quite rightly, you have been unable to dispute the accuracy of my observations [on the clientele at WUWT  website and science-deniers more generally].

    MARodger , it was very kind of you to devote so much time to Gseattle, to point out to him some of the fundamental errors in Ed Berry's thinking.   Let's hope Gseattle won't now demand you explain all the gross errors in the thinking of each & every one of the 31,000  "scientists" who signed the Oregon Petition of yesteryear !

    Thank you as well, MARodger , for linking to the "serious nutcases" at Principia Scientific International (PSI).   And thus the Desmogblog  exposure of PSI.    Just when I thought Gseattle's efforts could not be topped . . . I saw the letter [April 2013] where Christopher Monckton described the Numero Uno at PSI as "confused and scientifically illiterate".   Ah, such black humor (of the Pot and Kettle type).

    Poor PSI's Numero Uno, being looked down upon  by that well-known scientific exemplar Lord Monckton.   It gives fresh meaning to the old saying: "Lower than a snake's belly".

    All getting a bit Off-Topic for this thread, though.  But worth it.

    Priceless !

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  30. seattle @29,

    I don't think there is anything in my comment @28 which would lead to the inference you make @29. That a lunatic buys his onions in a particular supermarket does not turn that supermarket into a lunatic asylum. But a man buying stones from a shop that insists they are sellng him onions does give pause for thought for both the man and the crazy shop.

    If you were wishing to find some support for the Berry paper (although myself I would not bother wasting time on such a fool's errand), there is the point that Berry (2020) has been published in an allegedly peer-reviewed journal. However, not all journals are high quality. Indeed some are less concerned with quality of content than the quantity of content and will publish anything for a fee.

    But even if the journal were of quality, it is not entirely wrong to publish crazy papers if they have some level of merit within the arguments they set out. The isotopic analyses of Berry's paper could have pehaps be considered as providing such consideration except you will note Andrews (2020) 'Correcting an Error in Some Interpretations of Atmospheric 14 C Data' (which is the second citation accrued by Berry 2020) who debunks Berry (2020) as well as a few other denialist papers who plough that same particular furrow.

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  31. gseattle: ResearchGate is not a publisher. It is merely an online community that allows (annoyingly, constantly harrangues) its members to upload documents of any kind. It intends those documents to be "research," but there are literally zero standards for what can be uploaded. It's like uploading documents to your LinkedIn account.

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  32. MA Rodger, thank you for the link to the Dave Andrews paper! Moderators, will you please invite Dave Andrews to write an SkS post summarizing his paper?

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  33. Rather than just deleting most of geattle's post a little up=thread, I accidentally delted the entire thing. Most of it was inappropriiate complaints about moderation, etc. This is what should have been left:

    What would happen if....


    It was said Berry's arguments are "plainly wrong". Name one? I'm not asking as a gotcha. I might be convinced too that he's bad if you can just give me some content. But all you do is say he's plainly wrong, oh yeah, very bad. That's not how science works my friends.

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  34. gseattle - "It was said Berry's arguments are "plainly wrong". Name one?"


    "The IPCC agrees today’s annual human carbon dioxide emissions are 4.5 ppm per year and nature’s carbon dioxide emissions are 98 ppm per year. Yet, the IPCC claims human emissions have caused all the increase in carbon dioxide since 1750, which is 30 percent of today’s total."

    Well the IPCC does not report emissions in ppm per year (that is weird and comes from what the IPCC actually reports which is in Gt per year). However, it is true that FF emissions are a fraction of natural emissions so what gives?

    Notice that Berry doesnt directly reference where in the IPCC reports that his numbers come from. (Hard to imagine a peer reviewer that wouldnt insist on that). I wonder why? Well they come from Chpt 6 of the IPCC, nicely summarized in Fig 6.1.

    Immediately obvious from the diagram is that not only are there natural emission, but there are natural sinks and they balance. ie Berry omits the important detail. CO2 (whatever its origin) is cycled naturally too, however our emissions overwhelm the balance. Man's emissions are responsible for of the Increase in the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere. His statement is a misrepresentation of the IPCC argument. If you had got your information from the IPCC or bothered to check his claim, then you would see that. As others have pointed out, there are independent ways (O2 depletion and isotopic composition) to verify that FF emissions are responsible for the increase.

    So I read only half a paragraph of Berry. That was enough.

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  35. By the way here are some credentials for Dr. Edwin X Berry if anyone is interested.

    On topic is Greta, extinctions numbers:

    Greta says 200 per day, or 73,000 per year.

    IUCN says 869 since year 1500. That's 1.67 per year.

    Eclectic called the numbers a distraction.

    Perhaps that means, in this case, nevermind science, the exact numbers don't matter, so long as they are sufficiently scaring everybody into action.

    Do the rest of you hold that basic viewpoint?

    Wouldn't her message be mocked less if it were not imaginary? She could talk about the actual threatened species currently, a high number, wouldn't that be good? Would it not help round up more people into the cause who simply could not buy into her non-science claim? Wouldn't Greta Thunberg's reputation be better that way when people look back on this time from the future if we have one?



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    Moderator Response:

    [DB]  Off-topic and sloganeering snipped.  Please stay on-topic.

  36. Gseattle @35, the 200 per day are based on modelling, because its known that its very difficult to pick up true numbers of extinctions by observation alone. The modelling is probably  too high but the true numbers are likely much higher than 1.67 per year. All this has been explained to you up thread. 

    You do not indicate whether you accept or deny these statements about the modelling. You say you are interersted in science but one of the principles of scientific process is you have to be specific about what things you agree with and what you disagree with and why and with what evidence. If you cannot do this you have no place in the discussion. So shape up or go away.

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  37. "whether you accept or deny these statements about the modelling"

    I searched for an equation for awhile. Without understanding the models, I don't know. Closest was this at Harvard by two who developed a model. I can't easily show their equation here, it would require an image.

    Does anyone have a link to one of the extinction models used showing their equation?

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  38. Gseattle @35 ,

    it is important to think logically & scientifically about the problems being examined ~  without having the numbers distract you away from critical thinking.

    Go to the IUCN website, and you will read that the IUCN does not  state the total & absolute numbers of species extinctions as being 869 (or similar number).   The IUCN gives various caveats about why  the true number of extinctions must be far larger than the number you have mentioned.   Which should have been obvious to you !

    To examine the "distractions" further, I strongly suggest the examples to be found on Dr Judith Curry's blogsite ClimateEtc.   Go to ClimateEtc  and look up Nic Lewis as a salient example.   Lewis is a good statistician but a poor scientist.  

    A contrast (found elsewhere) is "Tamino", who is good at statistics and  good at scientific thinking.

    The proper purpose of statistics is to illuminate  the science of the underlying realities of this universe ~  not to obfuscate the scientific approach to understanding nature.

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  39. Although this was around 2008, they say, quote: "There are 869 recorded extinctions" and mention 'year 1500' six times. So that would be around 1.67 per year.

    Could you provide a link to IUCN where they say what you said they say? I'm not saying it isn't true, they may have changed their approach since 12 years ago, it's just that IUCN has around 178,000 webpages so it would be handy to have it narrowed down to one.

    Critical thinking is what caused me to look into Greta's claim of 73,000 per year, and to be wanting to look at the extinction model formulas. A relevant Yale article.

    I think Greta will have a fine future and be received well by more people now if she simply switches the message over to the number of currently threatened species like this:

    Jul 9, 2020 "The IUCN Red List has today surpassed [...] 120,372 species now assessed.

    Of these, 32,441 are threatened with extinction." [source]

    European Hamster now Critically EndangeredRing tailed Lemur

    We could, for example, have gofundme campaigns to help rescue some.

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  40. The following statement is contained in the press release, Strategy for halting and reversing biodiversity loss revealed, posted on the UN Environmental Programme/WCMC website yesterday, Sep 10. 2020.

    Today, over 1 million animal and plant species are threatened by extinction and many of the world’s ecosystems are at risk of collapse. In this major study led by the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA), involving 58 experts from across 46 institutions including UNEP-WCMC, scientists use futures modelling to consider seven different scenarios to explore how we can bend the curve on biodiversity loss from habitat conversion and feed a growing population.

    The study projects that without further efforts to tackle habitat loss and degradation, global biodiversity decline will continue at a rate close to or greater than that for 1970-2010.

    “We wanted to assess in a robust manner whether it might be feasible to bend the curve of declining terrestrial biodiversity due to current and future land use, while avoiding jeopardizing our chances to achieve other Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs),” explains study lead author and IIASA researcher David Leclère. “If this were indeed possible, we also wanted to explore how to get there and more specifically, what type of actions would be required, and how combining various types of actions might reduce trade-offs among objectives and instead exploit synergies.”

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  41. “Biodiversity collapses by two thirds in fifty years”

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  42. Gseattle ,  it seems you are failing to think sufficiently rationally about planetary ecosystem degradation.   Yes, your "gofundme campaign"  suggestion to rescue a few species . . . is flippantly amusing.  But you seem to mistake an accountant's numerical approach as being adequate for an overall assessment.

    You are right that the IUCN has looked at only 120,000 species for extinction risk assessment ~ with 30,000 marked as "threatened".   Yet the IUCN has still to assess a million species.  Perhaps several million.  If it ever gets around to completing such a large project.

    The whole situation has a fuzzy uncertainty of numbers, but it would be moronic to take a complacent view of extinctions and worldwide ecological balance.

    In this and other matters, I recommend you visit Dr Judith Curry's "ClimateEtc"  blogsite []  for both good & bad examples of rational/irrational thinking.   ( I advise you avoid Curry's recent "Open Day" comments column devoted to political commentary ~ where The Usual Suspects really opened up in mouth-frothing form, almost reaching the depths of a typical average WattsUpWithThat  commentary.)

    And possibly you may wish to avoid a new article of Curry's , where she praises "The Ethical Skeptic"  blog and its proposition that our modern global warming has been caused by an increase in geothermal heat.   I hope this is a giant leg-pull by Curry . . . for if it is not, then she is veering even further from the path of scientific sanity.

    But the main value in Curry's blogsite, is the appearances of Nic Lewis.    Gseattle, you can learn a lot from observing how Nic Lewis confuses statistics versus realities.

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  43. People like Gseattle appear to need very precise and proven numbers of extinctions, however we probably  wont ever get this because of the huge challenges involved. We know its significantly more than 1.67 per year but can't be precise.  We know with much better certainty that a large number of species are on the endangered list because its easier to measure actual populations than measure whether every last individual has died off.

    So we know we have a problem. I dont understand the mentality of people that demand absolute precision before acknowleding we have a serious problem, and taking action. It just doesnt seem very realistic or very smart to me.

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  44. I do agree with Gseattle to the extent that Greata could fine tune her message on extinctions. Maybe to  "modelling shows 200 species are dying each day". Or "Many species are dying each day".  Or "we are at risk of huge biodiversity loss." However it doesn't keep me awake at nights. The underlying principles and message is what counts most.

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  45. Re: Eclectic and the reference to bad arguments at Judith Curry's blog:

    I'm greatly amused in that article on the Ethical Skeptic and the attempt to claim global warming is due to geothermal effects to see Willis Eschenbach (long time contributor to WUWT, primarily with ad hoc and unsupportable math) as a major dissenter, pointing out that the blog post is simply unsupportable. 

    When other climate denialists weigh in loudly noting your argument is bad, it's really bad. 

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  46. KR @45 , yes the WUWT  blog and the Curry blog are an entertaining read, IMO.

    The Curry blog is a somewhat upmarket version of WUWT , with notably less frothing-at-the-mouth . . . but only marginally less of the super-selfish political extremism (see the recent "Politics Only" thread, where the regular commenters flaunt their underlying philosophies).

    Willis Eschenbach is one of my favorites ~ a guy with a high IQ and a sense of humor . . . but a bad case of Motivated Reasoning, and a sad lack of insight & common sense.   Crackpot, but at least not one of the "bad actor" Shills, I think.

    As you probably know well, WUWT  has not only hordes of climate-deniers of the ultra-lukewarmer type and wingnut type, but also a goodly share of CO2-greenhouse deniers plus a few super-wackies who are even more extreme in their anti-science beliefs.

    Pretty much all commenters there have a bad case of "We Are The Only True Scientists Remaining In The World".    And it is indeed amusing to see the mutual contradictions and squabbling.   But ~ they unite as one pack, to pile schoolyard vitriol onto the rare commenters (Nick Stokes and a few other brave souls) who occasionally try to fly the flag of rational scientific thinking.

    The Curry blog ~ nowhere near as bad, mostly.   On the surface !

    Sadly, I get the impression that the Host (Hostess?) at ClimateEtc  has for many years been gradually veering into less and less rationality re climate science.   Perhaps her Geothermal advocacy is a single aberration of the ultra-wacky type?   Or just a bigger Red Flag?

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