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All IPCC definitions taken from Climate Change 2007: The Physical Science Basis. Working Group I Contribution to the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Annex I, Glossary, pp. 941-954. Cambridge University Press.

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Comments 251 to 300:

  1. Skeptical Science New Research for Week #32 2022

    Ah-hah. Jason really wants us to notice Klaus Schwab.

    Here's some background on why (note the parroting*).  It helps to explain Jason's "hiding in plain sight" angle.

    The Great Reset: What is it? 

    Jason's mapping the original Great Reset crowd-sourced anxiety onto the IPCC. It doesn't make the jump very well. 

    We're seeing a kind of platypus being stitched together.

    Still not hearing any complaints about what we know about why we should deal w/warming, how this controverts common sense. Instead, hints of descent into old fashioned, dull and boring denial are becoming more visible. All roads lead there when there's no useful argument against "seatbelts are good."

    The discussion remains substantially stuck on "my ideology is offended." 

    *“The Great Reset is not a conspiracy theory. The World Economic Forum website reveals its agenda.”

  2. One Planet Only Forever at 08:40 AM on 19 August 2022
    IPCC Explainer: Mitigation of Climate Change

    On the What's the Problem image something like the following wording may help limit misunderstanding.

    ...accumulating in the atmosphere, meaning the surface has to be warmer to balance emitted energy with incoming energy.

  3. One Planet Only Forever at 08:31 AM on 19 August 2022
    IPCC Explainer: Mitigation of Climate Change

    On the 3 Nutshell image it may be helpful to mention that the costs of climate change increase significantly as the temperature increases.

    A more important point is that ethically it is unacceptable to impose any costs or harm onto others no matter how beneficial it may be for some current day people. But that may be too heavy of a point to try to make.

  4. One Planet Only Forever at 08:20 AM on 19 August 2022
    IPCC Explainer: Mitigation of Climate Change

    On the Short History image it may be helpful to clarify that the IPCC was established by the UNEP and WMO, and was endorsed by the UN General Assembly, in 1988.

    Some conspiracy theory fans speculate about alternative explanations for the formation of the IPCC.

  5. Skeptical Science New Research for Week #32 2022

    Jason Chen @2

    "Or are you disputing that the IPCC is pushing the same agenda? Their mitigations report doesn't propose a focused list of completable projects to halt AGW and fix the climate, but just the opposite. It inventories every category of human and economic activity and invites governments to re-engineer all of them, with no expectation of a "done" state ever. It's a roadmap for everything but fixing the climate. Klaus Schwab's agenda, with a different sort order."

    I completely disagee. It's like you must be looking at another page. The page you linked clearly shows a list of multiple climate change mitigation options and they would obviously resolve the problem, if properly applied. There may be other approaches but that is beside the point.

    The page includes another column of information on how this relates to the UN sustainable development goals. So what? These are not a " great reset". I would suggest most countries and political parties would already subscribe to them in principle anyway and clearly many countries are already working towards these with varying levels of success. The following are the UN sustainable development goals:

    GOAL 1: No Poverty
    GOAL 2: Zero Hunger
    GOAL 3: Good Health and Well-being
    GOAL 4: Quality Education
    GOAL 5: Gender Equality
    GOAL 6: Clean Water and Sanitation
    GOAL 7: Affordable and Clean Energy
    GOAL 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth
    GOAL 9: Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure
    GOAL 10: Reduced Inequality
    GOAL 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities
    GOAL 12: Responsible Consumption and Production
    GOAL 13: Climate Action
    GOAL 14: Life Below Water
    GOAL 15: Life on Land
    GOAL 16: Peace and Justice Strong Institutions
    GOAL 17: Partnerships to achieve the Goal

  6. One Planet Only Forever at 07:56 AM on 19 August 2022
    IPCC Explainer: Mitigation of Climate Change

    In addition to my suggestion @3 that forests may be a good alternative to Titanics, in keeping with a 'living thing theme' maybe Blue Whales or Elephants could be used.

    I am going through the presentation a second time to better understand it and provide additional comments.

    On the Communicating Uncertainty image the Confidence image does not show that the confidence level is the combination of the amount/quality of evidence and the degree of agreement between the types of evidence. The presentation of the two as axis of a graph with confidence increasing diagonally up and to the right would be clearer.

    Also on that panel the word "Asessing" under Confidence needs another 's'.

  7. Skeptical Science New Research for Week #32 2022


    You are either playing word games, or not understanding basic writing.

    "Assessments" are not taking actions to address a problem. The IPCC reviews available scientific literature and summarizes it.

    "Formulating strategies" is not taking actions to address a problem. It is giving advice. In the case of the IPCC, it is using the knowldege of the science it has assessed to indicate what the effect of various actions might be. Then policy makers can use that advice (or ignore it) when they choose to try to address climate change.

    You know, don't you? That pesky "Summary for Policy Makers" that accompanies each report?

    You are seeing monsters under every bed you see.

  8. Skeptical Science New Research for Week #32 2022

    the IPCC's primary purpose is not addressing anthropogenic climate change.

    Of course its purpose is to address climate change.  Specifically:

    1. To make assessments of available scientific information on climate change.
    2. To make assessments of environmental and socio-economic impacts of climate change.
    3. To formulate response strategies to meet the challenge of climate change.

    What's not that list is physics goals of fixing the climate or even predicting it well. 30 years later, the climate is neither fixed nor on a path to be fixed. Fixed hasn't even been defined. The IPCC hasn't identified anything close to a seat belt. The response strategies it has formulated have a conspicuous overlap with Klaus Schwab's agenda for maximal disruption. Large chunks of the world are rejecting them as economically and politically unpalatable.  These are just facts.

    Are they addressing climate change? Sure they are, in some sense.

  9. IPCC Explainer: Mitigation of Climate Change

    I've now looked at all of it - much easier to read at this link

    Re: 'The bath' graphic.
    It might be more 'denier proof' if it had proprotionately thick or thin pipes to account for the fact that the inflow/outflow of the natural carbon cycle is much bigger than the human caused one.

    Re: 'The bad' graphic
    I'm always unhappy about how activists say that Big Fossil Fuel is subsidised to the tune of, in your graphic $555 billion, but do not say that this is mostly standard tax breaks for investment employment etc that any business would get. There is an insinuation that these subsidies are 'special' ones just for Big Oil!

    Re: Two fruit bowls
    I think an unfortunate omission in the 'higher hanging fruit' tree is advanced geothermal, which seems to be currently under most people's radar. Scroll down to, or search for, 'enhanced geothermal' or EGS. 

    Without going into the various new developments, this holds out a very credible technology that would, besides being virtually emissions free, be widely available in almost every country on Earth 24/7/365, giving those countries significant energy independence. Planned plant have a very low 'footprint' area, unlike wind or solar... It has the further benefit that it would redeploy much of the work force and machinery of the oil and gas exploration industry to a good end, thus minimising the economic dispruption that would follow the shuttering of that industry.

    RE: Demand side management
    I love the 'buy less crap' line. Perhaps have a look at Buy me Once -  a website that is trying to encourage the world to buy quality that lasts, rather than 'crap' that has to be purchased over and over again

    Moderator Response:

    [BL} I have deleted what appears to have been a duplicate of this comment. If it contained new information, please outline it as a new comment, not as an attempt to revise an old one. (I am guessing it was an accidental resubmission.)

  10. One Planet Only Forever at 02:42 AM on 19 August 2022
    Skeptical Science New Research for Week #32 2022


    I have been following this discussion.

    I offer the following alternative perspective regarding the motives of parties acting related to the IPCC.

    The first step is establishing the proper historical evidence based understanding of the formation of the IPCC. The history of the formation of the IPCC is no mystery. It was formally established by the UNEP and the WMO and was endorsed by the UN General Assembly in 1988. The motivation for forming the IPCC was the increased awareness and understanding of the harmful unsustainable developments that competition for status, including economic and political competition, created. And the first global conference to make the environment the major issue was the UN Conference on the Human Environment in Stockhom in 1972. That triggered many pursuits under the umbrella of pursuit of developing sustainable improvements for the future of humanity (in addition to earlier actions like the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights)

    That history is aligned with the research history that Doug Bostrom has focused on.

    That independently verifiable evidence based understanding leads to the awareness that there is a nefarious group ... The misleading marketers trying to delay the limitation of harmful pursuits and the related required compensation to people who have been harmed by harmful unsustainable pursuits of benefit and status.

  11. Skeptical Science New Research for Week #32 2022

    Here's your claim, Jason: 

    "Are you doubting the Great Reset includes climate mitigation? Of course not, it explicitly calls for green infrastructure and ESG and all the usual globalist causes. It's not the Modest Reset or the Limited Reset, after all.

    Or are you disputing that the IPCC is pushing the same agenda? Their mitigations report doesn't propose a focused list of completable projects to halt AGW and fix the climate, but just the opposite. It inventories every category of human and economic activity and invites governments to re-engineer all of them, with no expectation of a "done" state ever. It's a roadmap for everything but fixing the climate. Klaus Schwab's agenda, with a different sort order."

    Shorter: the IPCC's primary purpose is not addressing anthropogenic climate change. In fact, the opposite. The IPCC's stated mission intentionally obscures its true objectives.

    So, you appear to believe that we have a political/economic agenda "The Great Reset" sailing under false colors. "Globalists" (where is party headquarters?) are promoting their hidden agenda by expediently attaching themselves to climate research.

    Supposing this conjecture were true and even if "globalists" had actually seized or conjured the IPCC for their hidden agenda, we're still left with the problem of anthropogenic climate change itself. Again, the worth of the message "you should wear seat belts" is independent of whether the advice comes from a communist or a capitalist, because the momentum of a human body moving at speed is independent of political ideology. 

    Others may perceive it differently, but what I'm hearing from you is some rather desperate straining to avoid fastening your seatbelt. Because the argument for fastening seatbelts is pretty much air tight, you must invent reasons for why doing so is to become putty in the hands of Big Safety. So, the invention to deal with this is that Big Safety is actually pursuing a hidden agenda to control your life and it becomes (apparently, because here we are) a matter of principle to oppose behaving sensiibly. 

    [And I'm left wondering: if we can't mutually discern the difference between mysticism and physics,  between religious thought and scientific research, is there any point in proceeding with this discussion? When we begin hearing comparisons between the Catholic church and the scientific enterprise, that's suggestive of a profound gap in understanding, the need for intensive and broad remediation we won't be able accomplish here.]


  12. IPCC Explainer: Mitigation of Climate Change
    Hello John Lang, Wow! These graphics and the graphics in the other work listed above will be incredibly valuable for me in my advocacy work. I am a fortunate Making-Sense-of-Climate-Denial alumni who went on to become a volunteer Climate Reality Project Leader.* I am now working with 1. the Climate Reality Project, 2. the Climate Reality Boston Metro chapter**, 3. HACE (Harvard Alumni for Climate and the Environment)***, and my town's Climate and Sustainability Action Plan Steering Committee. I will continue to investigate your work and share it wherever it seems applicable. I will also contact you to introduce myself and explain whenever I'd like to use your work for specific applications and how you'd like me to cite it. I am excited. I've only begun to think of how I can "speak" with your graphics. Your work is an incredible resource for me, and I argue for everyone who wants to speak with the general public about these issues as you and Katharine Hayhoe so eloquently point out is essential. Thank you. Sláinte, Dennis Richards #ClimateReality * Climate Reality Project ** Climate Reality Boston Metro *** Harvard Alumni for Climate and the Environment
  13. Skeptical Science New Research for Week #32 2022

    The presupposition being that anything you haven't run across in climate journals is "hidden" or "nowhere?"  Yeah, I don't know about that.

    Was the IPCC's founding a conspiracy?  I don't know about that either, but it did have a purpose and a point of view which are revealed in these secret gauzy conjectural conspiracy documents

  14. Skeptical Science New Research for Week #32 2022

    Thank you for answering my question, Jason.

    Nowhere do the people and organizations you're traducing describe themselves, their origins, purpose, goals or activities as you claim.

    Hence, you're describing a hidden agenda disguised as something else, a concerted organization operating covertly.

    Put another way, you're describing a conspiracy, offering a conjecture of conspiracy.

    Your portrayal doesn't rise to "conspiracy theory" or even hypothesis. It's too gauzy. 

    You can improve your conjecture by hard graft, the difficult work of tearing into literature and showing us where public policy that is emerging as a result of scientific research is being misguided. We make this easier; in a given month we offer hundreds of articles in an easy-to-find format. Have at it. Perhaps you'll find an important crack in the wall, but until you do no amount of hand-waving or evidence-free imputation will substitute. 

    Meanwhile— while we're waiting for that— public policy needs to be made and implemented, and commerce, markets and quite a bit of the rest of the human enterprise.need to adjust in respect of what physics tells us is happening and will happen, what we can see happening (see above, as usual). There's no option to wait while somebody indulges in and explores wild ideas. There's a clock running (see above, as usual). 

  15. Skeptical Science New Research for Week #32 2022

    Warning, JasonChen ~ you are beginning to wake up.

    I strongly advise you to keep behaving "normally" until you learn more about the real situation.

    One of us will contact you and offer you a choice.  For just $199.95 you can obtain a Red Pill which will open your eyes fully.   Alternatively, you may obtain a Gold Pill, which inducts you into the Inner Circle of the globalist elite ~ at the low price of $1499.95  (for this month only).

    Payment by Venmo.   Offer not transferable.

  16. Skeptical Science New Research for Week #32 2022

    Was it decided that we must rearrange parts of our physical economy?  The passive voice and the cryptic "we" rob the question of any meaning. "We" don't decide anything. "We" may be perfectly happy to drop hammers, more concerned with our paychecks and careers and reputations and self-images than with most of the 70 billion toes out there.

    What appears to have happened in the 1980s is that some faction at the WMO succeeded after a long lobbying effort in getting the UN to charter the IPCC with a half-scientific, half-political mission to assess the AGW science and make recommendations to governments on climate interventions to essentially slow the spread of global warming.  Both the fact of AGW and the need for interventions were baked into the mission from the start.

    30 years and countless billions later, the bench of researchers has swelled enormously. Careers have grown, new institutions born. The question of the future of the world's energy production has taken sharp political contours, because how could it not?  The IPCC sits atop the great pyramid you describe.  Everyone with an office in the pyramid agrees with the IPCC and stand united against the mobs of Deniers fuming in the sands outside.

    Seems to me we cannot tell from this picture whether that WMO faction was right or wrong back in the 1980s.  If they were right and the ranks of researchers since then have vindicated their predictions, we get the pyramid. 

    On the other hand if they were wrong, institutions take on their own momentum and quickly outpace any individual's ability to shift their course.  Political institutions in particular are always concerned about political optics and pathologically unable to admit error. Over the years the power structure naturally evolves to filter for true believers and loyalists and to cast out boat-rockers. The institutions come to be filled with people who support the institutional narrative for the same reason 97% of popes support Catholicism. We would still be looking at a pyramid.  

  17. Skeptical Science New Research for Week #32 2022

    "The media distorts and misuses..."

    Whoops. We're not talkiing about "the media," popular media. There are fundamental, profound differences between popular media and academic research journals and articles published therein. If this isn't clear and plainly obvious, it's a failure of communications on our part.

    Pictures would help, but in the meantime, take a look at a sampling of articles above. Notice that each article sits on a "pyramid" (it would look like a pyramid if all the work was printed and stacked) of other articles, with new claims in aritcles sitting at the tip of the structure and supported by what's below. Notice that as one descends "layers" of papers in this pyramid, the same convention of support from below applies, with the network of support rapidly expanding. There is a huge degree of connection here, and agreement.  Understanding this is key to understanding how scientific literature is a most implausible collaborator in any policy enterprise operating evidence-free. 

    Significantly, the entire structure is available for examination and 20:20 hindsight.  

    So that we're in understanding, Jason, is it your proposition that first it was decided we must rearrange parts of our physical economy, then that the entire scientific community was enrolled in the plan?

    And if not, and if what we know says "we need to make some changes" and this is a matter of broad agreement (we shouldn't drop hammers on our toes), what is the problem you see? I ask because most people wouldn't see a problem with this.

  18. Skeptical Science New Research for Week #32 2022

    I'm still not clear whom you're debunking. The initial reference was "a globalist elite promoting CC as part of a Great Reset." It seems pretty easy to identify factions meeting all four criteria. They need not be secret, nor coordinated, and like all of us they will have a gamut of motivations from the practical to the ideological. There need not be any org chart, no overarching organization, no mastermind coordinating the planet to make the Reset Great again.

    Specifically, what articles are you expecting to see that you're not? The media distorts and misuses climate research constantly and everywhere. "Sunny day could be linked to climate change." "Experts shocked by latest findings."  "It's even worse than we thought!" I wouldn't expect academic journals to publish letters from aggrieved researchers done wrong by the Washington Post. Nor exposés of the narrative advanced in the IPCC reports.

  19. Skeptical Science New Research for Week #32 2022

    The "Great Reset" purports that pragmatic reasons are secondary to ideological ambitions, Jason. 

    This is a fallacy based on inverted predicates.

    Physics created a market for safety belts, mitigation against catastrophic injury as a side-effect of a human activity and its unintended outcomes.

    Given that we're speaking of human nature including greed and self-interest, it was pretty much inevitable that improvement of vehicle safety would require regulatory oversight, adults in the room (us, acting together through public policy) to heed. Seatbelts required intervention against self-interest, yes— secondary to newly understood information.

    But improvement started with physics, passed on to address human nature, reaching an acceptable outcome.

    Political philosophy doesn't set physical constants, material properties. In the mid '70s the USSR mandated safety belt use, far earlier than any US state. Does this belated obedience to physics on our part mean we became communists? No— it means that physics doesn't depend on political philosophy. Here in the US as a  matter of political belief and practice we're sometimes seemingly confused between freedom to think, speak and worship vs. freedom to die foolishly and needlessly after striking a hard object at speed. But kinetics remains aloof from our thoughts, visible as a  serene constant when we don't think carefully.

    Science first, mitigation second. Evidence then reply to evidence. It's not complicated. Here physics  is telling us about forces much larger than a body passing through a windshield. But it's still physics first, policy reply second.

    There is indeed a much larger market for ideas in for stepping over and past anthropogenic global warming. Money will move from one industry to another. That after all is why we're having this 30-years-stale conversation. We're  part of the "addressing human nature phase," our waste of time and energy prolonged because stakes are high. 

    Meanwhile, we can (as indicated above) be pretty sure that if hundreds of thousands of researchers practicing within their own domains are seeing their work distorted or abused in furtherance of a hidden agenda by other investigators, with (let's say) 300,000 researchers victimized and a 1% objection rate we'd be hearing from about 3,000 of them— published in the collection of journals we see above, with great delight and zero chance of going unnoticed and unremarked.

    These researchers would be showing exactly how their work was being misused, with arguments built on supporting citations. That isn't going to happen, obviously; nobody's going to  or can argue against 9.8m/s/s. While this situation is a bit more complicated than an apple falling from a tree, the problem of warming is only the revealed product of a large unpacking of some basic principles. 

    As well, it's worth noting (as we can see from the densely dendritic connections between articles and their authors) that contradicting publications by offended workers would in turn would trigger an explosion of replies in various forms, a "prompt criticality" effect, producing the academic equivalent of a saloon brawl with geometrically increasing numbers of pugilists. 

    Where are these articles? Where's the sound and fury? It's nowhere. We see a few papers attempting to disprove AGW from first principles and failing badly when tested, hence fizzling as a source of research energy. Beyond that, crickets. 

    Meanwhile, I think in fairness we need to see a coherent org chart of The Great Reset. What's the leadership? How do instructions flow? How is agreement on the agenda decided and agreed? Who pays the bills, and where are the books?  China's government is at loggerheads with the US government on many matters, but they privately agree to execute a hidden agenda with nary a slip? What does this look lik as a matter of record? Etc. Short of having all that to see, the great reset sounds like great conjecture unsupported by facts. Coupled with the lack of objections by persons who actually do know better and could explain how, the whole concept seems greatly unlikely.

    There's no explanatory or predictive power in "they're perfectly all in it together," because that assumes invisibility, hence unfalsifiability, leaving us with nothing to work with. On the other hand, we have a mountain of well founded consilience.

    There's no exciting mystery here, no shadowy forces, nothing really more dramatic than "you shouldn't drop that hammer on your foot," widely agreed. Physicists say the hammer will develop kinetic energy, doctors say this will cause injury at a certain statistical rate, bootmakers sell steel-toed boots to address accidents, and maybe we'll figure out a safer tool than the hammer we're used to holding. Some of us are such that we'll need some help understanding why and how this is all commmon sense— including those who sell hammers for a living. Change forces at play, scale, see AGW, fix.That's all we're talking about. Let's all calm down and not get in a lather about conspiracies.



  20. Skeptical Science New Research for Week #32 2022

    Of course so many people could never keep the Great Reset a secret, that's how we know about it.  That and all the publicizing from the WEF.  The lack of secrecy doesn't prove it's imaginary, it shows it's real. So what are you debunking?

    Are you doubting the Great Reset includes climate mitigation? Of course not, it explicitly calls for green infrastructure and ESG and all the usual globalist causes. It's not the Modest Reset or the Limited Reset, after all.

    Or are you disputing that the IPCC is pushing the same agenda? Their mitigations report doesn't propose a focused list of completable projects to halt AGW and fix the climate, but just the opposite. It inventories every category of human and economic activity and invites governments to re-engineer all of them, with no expectation of a "done" state ever. It's a roadmap for everything but fixing the climate.  Klaus Schwab's agenda, with a different sort order.

  21. prove we are smart at 05:48 AM on 18 August 2022
    Geothermal heating and cooling: Renewable energy’s hidden gem

    Sorry for that- a good news story that the cynic and doomer in me wanted to trash. Too much global political,pandemic,financial and climate disaster stories read lately!

  22. One Planet Only Forever at 03:00 AM on 18 August 2022
    IPCC Explainer: Mitigation of Climate Change

    Like Nick I have not yet finished reading the entire presentation. What I have seen so far does look like it should help someone who is interested in being more aware and better understanding things.

    I wonder if it would be helpful to use the tonnes of carbon in a square kilometre of mature healthy forest (with the value per square mile in brackets). The complication is clarifying that one number would be for the average amount of carbon contained in the forest and another number would be the annual additional carbon capture and sequestration. A further complication to explain would be the range of values by forest type. But all of that additional explanation in a footnote could be helpful.

    I suggest the square kilometer (mile) rather than hectare (acre). I am not convinced that many people in the general population have as good an idea about the size of an acre or hectare.

  23. IPCC Explainer: Mitigation of Climate Change

    Hi Nick, John here. I think that's a really good shout. I like the Golden Gate Bridge or Empire State building personally... I will look at their respective weights and have a think!

    Many thanks for reading.


  24. IPCC Explainer: Mitigation of Climate Change

    I haven't been through the whole post yet (I'm otherwise busy) but this section stood out

    "After much internal angst and external debate, I chose to illustrate the weight of human-caused CO2 emissions using Titanics rather than, for example, London double-decker buses. Both are too anglicized, so I’m all ears for a more universally relevant suggestion. The Great Pyramid of Giza? "

    How about using some US centred icons, as that's where a lot of opposition comes from? Possible icons: Mount Rushmore, Mount st Helens, Statue of Liberty, Empire State building, Golden gate Bridge, Hoover dam etc

  25. prove we are smart at 12:46 PM on 17 August 2022
    Geothermal heating and cooling: Renewable energy’s hidden gem

    "Doing the right thing in a corporate setting", very unusual words coming from the corporate states of America!

    Another positive, fossil fuel reducing fixit. Upon reading this last link given on this repost , that was an eye-openner! The amount of urban growth the globe will need by 2060 is "the equivalent of adding an entire New York City to the world, every month, for 40 years."  

    That certainly wont help our over-shoot problem and keep quiet about endless growth on a finite planet. Look, these renewable energy solutions are needed and good news, geo-thermal with heat-pumps are great and also proven to be a good solution to fossil fuel types but how long till these innovations are common place?-we are running out of time.

    "In 2022, we predict this seasonal cycle to peak at a monthly mean value of 421.5 ± 0.5 ppm in May (Figure 1, Table 2). This will be the first time in the Keeling Curve record that monthly CO2 levels have exceeded 420 ppm, and from comparison with reconstructions of past CO2 levels from isotopes of carbon and boron in marine sediments, this will be the highest atmospheric CO2 concentration for over 2 million years." Taken from 

    I appreciate these engineers helping to prove a transition away from fossil fuels in a real world improvement for our biosphere. But with some tipping points activated with no turning back, and probably worse to come-it's all too little,too late..  



  26. Is Nuclear Energy the Answer?


    Thank you for the reference.

    The NEA article you reference is a good start on answering the limited resource argument that Abbott 2012 makes. I note that the myriad different designs currently being pushed have different material uses than the single reactor type that they analyze. Your NEA article suggests that with an aggressive build out plan that enough nuclear plants to generate about half of all electricity needed might be built by 2085. source of needed electricity

    SInce an aggressive build has not yet started and the paper is from 2011, it will be 2095 before enough nuclear plants to generate half of electrical supply would be built. That is too late. We need a system in place long before 2095. This alone eliminates nuclear.

    They find critical shortages of two materials: uranium and cooling water. They find that the amount of uranium in the Earth is too small to supply more than about 30 years of high electricity supply with once through reactors and that after that breeder reactors will be required. I note that small modular reactors require more uranium than the reactors analyzed.

    Breeder reactors are much more complicated than once through reactors. Current reactors are already very expensive to run because of their complexity. There are currently no breeder reactors commercially making electricity. The fuel has to be reprocessed for the scheme to work with very large proliferation issues. It is unlikely that a design to start building a commercial breeder reactor will be avaliable in less than 15 years.

    We currently see in Europe that during heat waves and/or drought that many reactors on rivers have to be shut down due to lack of cooling water. So much for "always on". That leaves only sea front or a very few major lakes. Most sea front locations are threatened by sea level rise and unsuitable. Inland areas will be very far removed from the source of their electricity. I doubt that it will be possible to find enough suitable locations on sea front land to build out a significant number of nuclear plants. Closed cooling systems dramatically lower reactor efficiency.

    Reading your citation with a critical eye makes me wonder who would think that nuclear power might be a significant electrical source in the future. The problems are too gteat. We have not even started to discuss the bombs currently exploding around the largest nuclear plant in Europe. No-one cares if a solar farm is bombed.

    Nuclear power is too expensive, takes too long to build and requires too much cooling water and uranium.

  27. Experts: Senate-passed bill will yield myriad climate benefits

    Great graphs, I'm going to use these. 

  28. Skeptical Science New Research for Week #27 2022

    Moderator Response:

    [BL] Note that this link leads to the same paper as comment #2.

    Also note that you have been told before the link-only comments are discouraged.

    In addition, the New Research posts are not intended for people to simply advertise their own papers. This specific post is from July of this year. At the bottom of each New Research post, there is a link to a page that explains which journals are included in the scans. The paper that you mention (Climatic Change Springer) is on that list, so I would expect to see this paper showing up later this week or next as part of the regular scan.

    Please be patient, and let the system do its stuff. If you know of a paper that is worth mentioning, and it is in a journal not covered in these weekly posts, then feel free to bring it to our attention. Providing a short summary of why tthe paper is important will help readers decide whether to follow the link or not, and help people find your comment through search engines.

  29. Skeptical Science New Research for Week #27 2022

    Spatiotemporal changes in precipitation concentration over Iran during 1962–2019

  30. Experts: Senate-passed bill will yield myriad climate benefits

    michael sweet@3

    "The way that I see it is that every solar panel or wind turbine installed means that much less fossil fuels burned. "

    By subsiisizing renewable energy we may simply be funding the growth of renewables alongside fossil fuels. I am not an expert on this bill, but my understanding is that there are no provisions for phasing out fossil fuels.

  31. It's not us


    The sequence of initial equilibrium --> CO2 added, equilibrium upset --> system changes to adapt and new equilibrium is reached more or less the way you describe it.

    In the Hansen et al 1981 paper examined here, figure 4 shows the modelled response to an instantaneous increase in CO2. The left side shows the immediate response, with the increased downwelling IR and a reduction in the loss to space. That continues in panel b), which is the state after the atmosphere has responded but before land an ocean can increase in temperature. The right panel shows the final new equilibrium after everything has warmed up.

    Hansen et al 1981 figure 4

    (Clicking on the image source should give you a larger version. I've scaled the display to fit the page.)

    We're a long way from reaching that final equilibrium, though, so we're still in panel b, more or less. We won't reach equilibrium until we stop adding CO2 and things can stabilize. If we only had to heat the ocean mixed layer (60-100m deep), then we'd still see heating for a few decades after CO2 stops rising. With deep oceans involved,  we're looking at centuries.

    The "fingerprint" relates to the current warming, not future equilibrium state.

  32. Marcel de Berg at 05:35 AM on 16 August 2022
    It's not us

    One fingerprint seems wrong to me
    Fingerprint 'Less heat escaping to space'

    Assuming that the starting point of the energy balance is that the incoming radiation (IN) is equal to the outgoing radiation (OUT) (without taking into account the small part that is recorded as biomass in the lithosphere per year).

    If this is not the case and more energy is left behind on Earth every second, the temperature on Earth will continue to rise. This is not the case. More CO2 iterates to a new equilibrium at higher temperature.

    When more CO2 enters the atmosphere, an iteration takes place to a new equilibrium of IN = OUT, as follows: more radiation back means a higher surface temperature and therefore more blackbody long IR of the earth's surface, that means in a next step a little more LW IR back to Earth until it iterates to a new balance. The temperature of the earth's surface has then risen to such an extent that it compensates for the delay of the extra CO2.

    But seen from space, in the new equilibrium, the amount of radiation coming from the Earth per unit time is again equal to that from the sun, because the increase in the temperature of the Earth's surface has compensated for the delay by more CO2.

    If this reasoning is correct, then one of the fingerprints is not correct. If the reasoning is wrong, where is it wrong? You can easily calculate the iteration to a new equilibrium yourself with a simple formula or in an Excel spreadsheet.

  33. Experts: Senate-passed bill will yield myriad climate benefits


    I agree that is is a shame that fossil fuel interests are being given so much money.


    The way that I see it is that every solar panel or wind turbine installed means that much less fossil fuels burned.  The bill  provides billions to support more renewable energy.  There is only so much energy used.  The more renewable energy installed, the closer we are to our goals. 

    I try to keep my eye on the goal: install as much renewable energy as possible as rapidly as possible.  I think this bill advances that goal.

  34. Experts: Senate-passed bill will yield myriad climate benefits

    Trakar @1 , your practical (i.e. achievable) suggestions are welcome.

    A wise saying is: "Do not let the perfect be the enemy of the good."

  35. Experts: Senate-passed bill will yield myriad climate benefits

    I just don't understand how failing to meet the Paris Agreement obligations that most of us feel now, and felt then, were totally inadequate to meet the need to avoid the worst impacts of climate change over the current century, as a reason to cheer for a totally inadequate piece of legislation that gifts hundreds of billions of dollars to the fossil fuels industries in the form of tax credits without any requirement about how these tax credit savings are to  spent/invested by these actors. Sounds to me like a lot of these billions are going to be invested in buying more politicians who deny climate change realities and legislation while they fight to promote fossil fuel use and expansion?

  36. Greenhouse effect has been falsified

    GreenGiant @167,
    Your conceptualising of 'energy conservation' is misplaced. The GHGs prevent energy flow into space and the planet has to warm to increase other flows to space and thus regain thermal equilibrium.
    The phenomenon you describe, the cooling of the upper atmosphere, is entirely trivial within the grand scheme of AGW.
    Such cooling has always been expected from AGW, and indeed has been observed. But this only occurs way up in the stratopsphere. The graphic below (fig3 fron Steiner et al (2020) 'Observed Temperature Changes in the Troposphere and Stratosphere from 1979 to 2018') shows these falling temperatures at altitudes (top to bottom) 35-55km, 25-45km, 20-40km, 13-22km. These falling temperatures result from a decrease in the CO2 IR emissions from below which previously would warm the stratosphere.
    Steiner et al (2020) fig 3
    Below the stratosphere is the troposphere which is thermally coupled to the surface by atmospheric circulations so no cooling is observed below the tropopause (the top of the troposphere).
    The impact of the stratospheric cooling under AGW is very minor in terms of planetary energy balance, something in the order of -0.4% of the global energy imbalance due to AGW. And when defining the Top of the Atmopshere and thus calculating climate forcings, it is the tropopause that is used as the Top of the Atmosphere. The interations across the tropopause are not ignored in more detailed calculations but they are small enough to have no impact within forcing calculations.

  37. Greenhouse effect has been falsified

    I believe I may be able to present insight as to why some individuals claim that the atmospheric greenhouse effect doesn’t exist.  Most explanations and diagrams of the greenhouse effect point out the flow of energy in the process, which includes the earth surface absorbing short wavelength radiation from the sun, and radiating a portion of this energy as heat energy (or IR radiation) into the atmosphere. Finally, the greenhouse gases absorb much of this outgoing radiation that falls within their absorption bands, and re-radiates it uniformly in all directions. Therefore, some of this IR radiation that would have simply been lost in space is now redirected back down to cause more warming at the lower levels.

    What oftentimes isn’t mentioned, however, is the fact that it is now cooler at the altitudes above which the IR absorption and re-emission by GHGs is taking place. Remember that the greenhouse effect does not add more heat energy to the atmosphere. It can only redirect the heat energy that is already there. Since this fact in usually not included in the explanation, many readers get the idea that the entire upper atmosphere is at the temperature it would be without the GHGs, and any greenhouse warming at the lower levels would violate energy conservation.

    Therefore, I believe that in writing articles or making diagrams on how the greenhouse effect works, it should be indicated that while warming takes place in the lower atmosphere, it is done at the expense of heat in the upper atmosphere so that energy is conserved.

    Moderator Response:

    [BL} As yet another incarnation of a previously-banned user, no you can't.

  38. One Planet Only Forever at 02:36 AM on 13 August 2022
    Skeptical Science New Research for Week #32 2022

    The study “Estimating the environmental impacts of 57,000 food products” adds to awareness and understanding helping consumers make less harmful food choices. But it contains a couple of questionable points:

    1. It is questionable to consider any water needed for food growing to be a problem. Water use is only a concern if it is artificial potentially unsustainable human caused water extraction or diversion such as irrigation, especially water extraction from aquifers. Food production that does not require artificial water use is not a problem. Almond growing without irrigation an be lower impact than growing food that requires very little water but is done by diverting natural water for the growing.
    2. It is questionable to claim that the impacts of processing the processed foods are insignificant compared to the impacts of ‘growing, harvesting, and delivering basic food commodities to retail stores for sale’ (the following quote makes that questionable claim).

    "The estimated environmental impacts account for the processing and transportation of commodities to retail stores, but do not incorporate postproduction processing, packaging, and transportation of, for example, converting sugar into a sugar-sweetened beverage or flour and butter into a croissant. This is unlikely to have a large influence on the estimated environmental impact scores as the large majority of food-related environmental impacts result from agricultural production (14), but it is important to note that this may affect the estimated scores for, for example, air-freighted produce or highly processed foods composed of agricultural commodities with low environmental impacts (19, 20).”

    The authors should have stated that the full lifecycle impacts of postprocessing need to be included in the evaluation of the total impact of a consumer’s purchase choice. A personal bag of crisps (UK term for what N. Americans call potato chips), with ~1.5 oz (40 g) of potato in it, contains about 1/4 of a medium-sized potato. It seems very unlikely that the impacts of construction and operation of the processing, packaging, transportation of end products, and all related wastes of every part of the process are insignificant compared to the impacts of growing, harvesting, and delivering 1/4 of a potato to a retail display. Frying the bits of potato is not an insignificant impact, though it has to be off-set by the impacts of the home cooking method. And the transportation of the massive volume of completed ‘bags full of very little material’ would appear to produce a significant impacts per 100 g of product. Also, related important impact of a bag of crisps is the end disposal of the packaging of that little bit of edible product.

  39. What on Earth is up with Heatwaves?

    The video is perhaps more a bit of engaging fun and less an attempt to explain why extreme weather events are far more extreme than the averaged level of AGW would suggest.
    (And the video comment about Germans being taller than Brits - well there is evidence for this:-
    Giant German surrenders at Calais
    The midget is photographer Eddie Worth (5'7") who was apparently a few inches taller than some in the Canadian unit that captured this lanky German - Jakob Nackem - 7'3".)

    On a more serious note...

    The NOAA Global Time Series page provides the following numbers.
    While OLS 1980-2021 of global average SAT shows a rise of +0.175ºC/decade, the global land average SAT is rising at +0.30ºC/decade, a difference mentioned in the video. But these are averages.
    The land average SAT for Europe shown by NOAA is rising at +0.46ºC/decade. And just taking the summer months JJA, these are rising at +0.52ºC/decade, although this is a few points higher than the Jul-Aug rise of +0.51ºC/decade, this because June is the 'warmiest' of these 3 months. Mind, July showed more wobbliness in this regression.
    A repeat for North America rather than Europe gives less dramatic results with JJA rising +0.29ºC/decade.
    It would be possible to dig deeper using maximum daily temperatures but I cannot see such breaking down of average would lead to finding less extreme events.

    One thing the video did mention (@5.29) was global circulations although not in any detail and not very clearly - "...shifts in the motion of as (sic) atmosphere and ocean swell as the dryness of soils can also dial up the heat." I think the Arctic jetstream is a big factor in the NH extra-tropics experiencing more extreme weather events and the shifting of that jetstream and its bendy blocking events are in turn attributed to AGW, as this Bloomberg OP explains..

  40. What on Earth is up with Heatwaves?

    The video is a nice example of why even the experts loose the oversight and do not anymore understand what's going on or what's causing this heat to become so much more likely as you have to understand Earth for the complex answer!

    (1) higher mean temperatures - so much is clear!

    (2) non-linear increase in marine heat waves - neighboring landmasses get cut off from moisture and neighboring warm waters lead to higher temperatures over coastal areas.

    (3) the drying out of the atmosphere - relative moisture values decline over the land masses leading to higher temperature increases as evaporation is not buffering temperature increases what is supercharging the drying out of the vegetation what is again reinforcing the drying out of the atmosphere - vicious cycle!

    (4) early snow melt leads to dryer springs and summers which become warmer. And receding snow cover now in all seasons.

    (5) drying our of rivers which is increasing the drying out of the vegetation and atmosphere. Here the smaller glaciers that are vanishing are important, as many small streams are now vanishing.

    (6) higher water vapor content in the tropics leads via extreme convection in the tropics over the expanding warm water surfaces to an increased release of latent heat - condensation - and when the dry but extreme energetic air descends it gets extremely warm again on its way down (gets compressed again) where it causes extreme heat waves - across the subtropics where the air of the tropics normally descends. Further, the dry air descends into drier air thus no clouds forming.

    (7) the meridional heat transfer in the Earth system in speeding up thus warmer waters and warmer air masses move farther away from the poles which are then contributing to extreme heat waves.

    (8) As the tropical oceans are warming fast - e.g. indo-pacific warm water pool is expanding fast - extreme convection is intensified thus the brian dobson circulation in the stratosphere is enhanced - the air raises from the surface oceans ou into the stratosphere from where i risies further up on its way to the poles only to come down again in the mid to high latitudes. And where the air from the stratosphere descends it can reinforce heat waves (high pressure systems) across the mid and high latitudes. Further, the descending air from the stratosphere brings high Ozone loads to the surface what is also contributing to the heat at the surface.

    (9) then we have a changing planetary circulation - the meridional direction (north/south) is increasing and the zonal direction (east/west) is weakening. The main cause is here that the zonal air flows are increasingly disturbed and redirected into a meridional direction by blocking systems.

    (10) the increasing transport of cold air equatorward and warm air poleward leads to increasing zonal temperature differences which reinforce north/south air movements. And tropical/subtropical air moving poleward causes more heat waves.

    (11) vanishing sea ice disturbs the jet around the Arctic and Antarctic now which is meandering more thus also contributing to an increasing meridional air transport leading to more heat waves.

    (12) next dryer air leads to lesser clouds - and as we observe now large areas of the continents drying out the cloud feedback in heatwave-affected areas is getting stronger. Further, we observe now over heatwave regions and marine heat wave regions a decline of cloud cover thus we have here also a vicious cycle.

    As a concluding remark: the emergence of large-scale exceptional heat waves is in many aspects a vicious cycle that will have an extreme impact on the carbon cycle and its subcycle the methane cycle now becoming an important driver for global warming - in short: we have now entered self-amplifying warming!

     And sorry for the mistakes i have made, but this was only a short improvised oversight of the factors driving the recent emergence of extreme heat waves long before we anticipated them!




  41. Is Nuclear Energy the Answer?

    The following paper lists all material requirements that would be necessary if we tried to grow nuclear power 10x. It assumes expansion based on the Ringhals NPP (3xPWR, 1xBWR, Gen II) and considers the whole lifecycle from mining to disposal in a geologic repository. It appears there would be no fundamental limitation to construct reactors and repositories, although six materials might be of concern relative to the current production rate (bentonite, fluorite, indium, fluorspar, manganese and gadolinium). The main constraint of an LWR expansion would be the supply of fresh fuel (UOX) as uranium, especially at a high enough concentration, is a finite resource. There are ways to significantly increase energy extracted from fresh uranium in LWRs via higher burn-ups, reenrichment of tails, twice-through recycling (MOX), heavy reflector, improved self-breeding, but, ultimately, in the long run we would need to find a way to build and fuel reactors that don’t rely on fresh uranium. (Obviously, the stock of radioactive materials requiring long-term isolation can't grow infinitely either.) In any case, it seems unlikely we are going to globally hit those hard limits of uranium supply soon, given that most of reactors are quite old and the rate of new constructions is insufficient to replace them. Moreover, LWRs built today are Gen III+, so they are more efficient with fuel than Gen II considered in the study.

    A Preliminary Assessment of Raw Material Inputs that would be Required for Rapid Growth in Nuclear Generating Capacity,
    OECD/NEA, Paris (2011).

  42. Electrifying transportation reduces emissions AND saves massive amounts of energy

    I am very grateful for Karin and Yale Climate Connections for publishing this concise, but thorough and well-illustrated article.  I was amazed when learning about the free energy change of the hydrocarbon combustion reaction in college chemistry and realized that the internal combustion engine (ICE) was wasting all the heat energy.  I have been telling people about the inherent energy inefficiency of ICE powered cars for years and usually get blank stares.  Perhaps, now that EVs are becoming much more common and I can use some of the great illustrations from this article, I will have better success! 

  43. Infrared Iris will reduce global warming

    More from the Ito and Masanaga paper:

    "The longwave CRE at midnight infers a negative feedback just as predicted by the stability iris hypothesis, while the noontime CRE suggests a weak positive feedback in which the shortwave heating owing to a shrinkage of anvil clouds slightly outruns the longwave effect. These competing effects are estimated to largely cancel each other out when aver-aged over a diurnal cycle. The stability iris effect is suggested to be nearly radiatively neutral in a climatological context, although away from neutrality on subdaily time scales."

  44. The Debunking Handbook 2020: Downloads and Translations

    Wonderful information, thank you. I would like to propose that words like "true" and "correct" be avoided (these are not used in any good scientific papers that I have read), and that terms like "most accurate" or "highly accurate" be used instead. All our ideas about the world are models, they are human inventions, and their correspondence with reality seems to never be perfect, even in the case of our most accurate theory, the Standard Model of Quantum Mechanics.

  45. The Debunking Handbook 2020: Downloads and Translations

    I struggled to download the Debunking Handbook, but after about 4 attempts I was successful

  46. Infrared Iris will reduce global warming

    Based on MA Rodger's comment, I took a quick look at the references. A lot that are more than 10 years old, and a couple of the recent "references" are to stuff at the CO2 Coalition. A lot of self-references, too.

  47. Infrared Iris will reduce global warming

    I don't have a problem accessing Lindzen & Choi (2022) 'The Iris Effect: A Review'. The problems with any post-2011 up-date start when you do access Lindzen & Choi (2022). The vast majority of the 5,000-plus word account is re-fighting lost battles of the past, battles that actually pre-date the SkS OP above. In essence, all Lindzen & Choi are saying is that climatology has yet to nail down cloud feedbacks so don't forget the Iris Effect, although they give little enough reason for such remembering. And while Lindzen attempts to relive the past, the work on clouds continues along as it always did, including tropical ocean cloud with recently for instance Ito & Masunaga (2022) 'Process level assessment of the iris effect over tropical oceans' stating their "results show that a theory focusing on the air temperature structure around anvil clouds is likely at work in the tropical atmosphere, although the anvil's warming and cooling effects would offset each other during the whole day and night."

  48. CO2 effect is saturated

    CloudySky @653 (and recent others) :

    You yourself will be "heavily funded" [your quote] by the Nobel Committee for Physics, just as soon as you publish your scientific paper showing that the surface temperature of Venus [about 460 degreesC] is due to your secret newly-discovered physics (which excludes greenhouse effects).

    (The incident sunlight i.e. solar irradiation at Venus is amost exactly twice that at Earth.) 

    Perhaps a double-header Nobel Prize is coming your way, CloudySky?   You could also garner the Nobel Prize for Medicine, if you can show that Venus's feverish temperature is due to an . . . ah . . . ahem . . . Venereal condition.

    I hope your legislators vote to cool the charade of global warming, by at least 1 degree.

    Moderator Response:

    [BL] The comment you responded to has been deleted, due to it being another incarnation of a banned user.

  49. Science and its Pretenders: Pseudoscience and Science Denial

    Rosross @3 , please give details of your criticism of King.

    A quick glance at her website is not showing me where she's wrong.

  50. Science and its Pretenders: Pseudoscience and Science Denial

    Having looked at King's site it is perhaps depressing that she demonstrates such high levels of subjective bias in regard to certain issues such as non-allopathic medicine. Surely if one is going to take a position to defend real science, which is invaluable, then she should apply the criteria to her own writings. 

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