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Global Warming: Are the Skeptics Right?

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Glenn Tamblyn
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Re: The Cloud Effect
Glenn Tamblyn   2/14/2012 5:04:16 PM


If you read back through some of my earlier comments you will see that warming is continuing unabated. The oceans are accumulating heat pretty much unchecked at a rate of multiple Hiroshima Bombs per second. Its just that over the last decade circulation patterns in the ocean have changed a bit and more heat is being drawn down to greater depths so the surface isn't warming much so the atmosphere isn't warming much.

" volcanic activity, the sun, and many other "natural" influences are discounted" No they are not. They have all been looked at and their impacts assessed. And apart from the occasional very large eruption such as Mt Pinatubo in 1992, their effects are observed to be small.


Since we are past the peak of the last Inter-Glacial we should if anything be in a very slow cooling trend, which is what the last 8000 years have been doing. The Orbital changes that trigger Ice Ages are well understood and the expected next Ice Age would have a very slow gentle but cooling start. Instead we are seeing warming.

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Re: What are the facts?
WhEEngineer   2/14/2012 4:50:27 PM
Science SHOULD be about facts, but the GW is about false data and conclucions made then data fabricated to support that end.  The vastness of the earth's climate has just been scratched by man's questioning and we haven't been around that long in Earth time.

Rob Spiegel
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Re: it probably won't happen
Rob Spiegel   2/14/2012 3:26:54 PM
Good point, Doc. Concerns about this actually date back to the late 1800s in London. The budding industrial revolution changed the nature of the clouds over London, according to observers. Add 125 years to that.

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Re: What are the facts?
Island_Al   2/14/2012 3:11:40 PM
The size of the planet, atmosphere, and volumes of oil are not engineering statistics, they are facts.  Science is about facts, not expert opinions.  We as humans actually know very little.  But again the experts are asking me to sacrifice based, not on fact, but their opinions!  They may indeed be correct, but first, show me the science!


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Re: What are the facts?
Cassiopeia   2/14/2012 3:02:04 PM
We Americans are both the best educated and wealthiest people in the world. I guess we--with exceptions--value our money more than our education

Well America is the largest economy, (excluding the European Union) 10-15th ranked in GDP/capita, and has many Nobel laureates and the top ranked Universities.  However, as we can see on this board, education is not evenly spread.

At the bottom end America has people living in cardboard boxes and unable to get basic health-care and a majority of the population who believe in creationism or intelligent design, including Roy Spencer, one of the handful of sceptic climate scientists! 

Which of the Following Statements Comes Closest to Your Views on the Origin and Development of Human Beings?

Unfortunately, if people can be convinced of creationism they can be manipulated into believing AGW is a fraud as well.  Now how does that happen?

In 1991 the Western Fuels Association, National Coal Association and Edison Electric Institute was given $510,000 to test its messages in key markets, it identified two targets

 "Target 1: Older, less educated males".
These people, ICE said, would be receptive to "messages describing the motivations and vested interests of people currently making pronouncements on global warming – for example, the statement that some members of the media scare the public about global warming to increase their audience and their influence...."

"Target 2: younger, lower-income women"
"... These women are more receptive ... to factual information concerning the evidence for global warming. They are likely to be "green


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Statistics Can be Manipulated to Support Your Conclusion
ACEngineer   2/14/2012 2:56:14 PM
Look, the reason that we are getting warmer is because there was a "Little Ice Age" in the middle ages that we are still coming out of.  It was warmer prior to that.  The Earth has seen very warm periods and very cold periods throughout the ages.  There are fossilized remains of tropical plants on Antartica.  If you only look at the last few hundred years, there is global warming, but overall, the worlds climate has been warmer and colder and people are self dillusional to think that they are so important that humanity controls more than a slight affect on the world.  Maybe if the "Global Warming Community" would all hold their breath then they would keep all of that hot CO2 from getting into the atmosphere and making it so hot!  It was -31 in Tulsa Ok last year which is the coldest ever recorded and 117 in the summer (hottest ever recorded).  Russia and Eastern Europe are haveing the worst winter ever recorded.  "Ever recorded" constrains the data to fit my conclusion when I know that it has obviously gotten hotter and colder in the past.  Grow up people and focus on creating new and better products and let the loons yell that the sky is falling!  You have 40 years to generate good designs in the world and the climate is what it is for the 60-80 years you will have the opportunity to enjoy it.  Figure out a good use for CO2 if you ar ethat worried about it so you can make something productive instead of gnerating more of it with your mouth!

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Re: What are the facts?
bdcst   2/14/2012 2:35:52 PM
Where to begin?

When throwing around engineering statistics such as volume percentages keep in mind that our weather is a non linear function.  Indeed, the butterfly effect, a very tiny disturbance at the right time can trigger a major event that would otherwise dissipate harmlessly, can throw those numbers out of kilter.

We do not have sufficient statistical history to predict climate change cycles of which there are, no doubt, many overlapping varieties.  We can't even predict how much longer our planet will remain relatively hospitable to human habitation.  For much of Earth's history it wasn't!

When will the magnetic poles flip again?  How much energy is flowing out of the still moulten core to the surface?  What is the present rate of leakage of thermal energy into space and how has it changed in the past 100 years?  Maybe those alien UFO's know, but we don't.

What do we know?  Our relatively short measurement history shows a warming trend if the extremes are allowed to average out.  Our measurements of sea ice show a trend towards significant loss.  Will this continue or will it ultimately cycle back when other conditions are met?  Our research into our pre-history using ice boring samples, sediment samples and even the growth rings from some of our ancient trees have given us some clues.  What we do know is our atmosphere is changing somewhat, nature is fickle and space ship Earth could turn on us making for some very difficult times ahead.

Instead of pointing fingers at who or what is to blame we should be engaging in discussions about how we can learn to control our climate or at the very least plan for the inevitable changes that will greet our decendants.  Gifted with powerful minds we are the stewards of this planet and should start to act as such!




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Re: What are the facts?
Jeff_A   2/14/2012 2:35:23 PM
One concern for your analysis is the implicit assumption of uniformity in the atmosphere.  I have been to islands in the tropics with few cars and very little air pollution.  I've been in big cities in the US and other continents with loads of pollution.  I know I am conflating CO2 with visible pollution, feel free to call me out on that, but my point is that different places have different pollutant concentrations.

My simple observation on climate change, not global warming,  is from my own lilfe.  I grew up in the midwest, Chicago area plus or minus 150 miles.  As a teenager, there was ice and snow on the ground beginning in October to November and staying until April.  Relatives and friends who still live in that area now, 40 years later, tell me that the winters are much more mild and that snow hasn't stuck around like that for years. 

With all kudos to the CO2 fans (like sports fans, not like centirifugal or axial), I don't think the mesurements of high atmospheric concentrations by reliable scientists could either be drylabbed, faked, or explained by natural phenomena.  If I'm wrong please explain. 

I think it is important for us as engineers to separate what is accurate data from the political impact of what is accurate data.  In God we trust, all others bring data.  N>30 preferred. Let's get reliable data, then figure out what to do to maximize our current situation and prepare for a future for generations to come.  Wherever you stand politically,you will probably agree with me that the engineering and scientific community will come up with any solutions to problems that society has. We better have accurate data to make reasoned decisions.


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2 inch rise in 16 years?
WhEEngineer   2/14/2012 2:17:56 PM
Run for the mountains!  Build an Ark!  The sky is falling and the world is flooding!

Really, you brought up the change in clothing in the past 50 years.  Natural warming and cooling cycles happen throughout the eons and animals and plants on the earth have survived.  I don't spend all my waking thoughts on a minimal addition of gases to the atmosphere or lay awake nights dreading the 'what if's'.

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What is CO2?
WhEEngineer   2/14/2012 2:01:00 PM
Plant food.

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