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biffvernon

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Posted
  • Location: Lincolnshire coast
  • Location: Lincolnshire coast

    http://www.ipcc.ch/SPM6avr07.pdf

    But remember that, despite the picture being painted being dire and requiring very radical action by everyone, now, this is a conservative and cautiously worded report that has been under the influence of the government delegations from USA, China and Saudi Arabia. Left to their own devices, the scientists would have produced something even more alarming.

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    Posted
  • Location: Dorset
  • Location: Dorset

    A very conservative paper, based on the latest papers and research.

    Well worth a read, I'll ignore the poilitics as I don't really think it has a place in this thread.

    Personally I would like to see it broken down further into the effects on various ecosystems.

    More comment later... Probably.

    Cheers

    Matt

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    Posted
  • Location: Lincolnshire coast
  • Location: Lincolnshire coast
    based on the latest papers and research.
    How much of the very latest research on ice field dynamics has been taken into account? The lastest research here and in other areas of feedback mechanisms, is pushing the position towards the bad side of doubt.
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    US, China, Saudi Arabia and India all lobbied to tone down the report. What a suprise, the world's biggest CO2 emitter, the 2 world's fastest growing CO2 emitters and the world's biggest oil exporter. The scientists' undiluted predictions would indeed be more severe.

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    Posted
  • Location: Mytholmroyd, West Yorks.......
  • Weather Preferences: Hot & Sunny, Cold & Snowy
  • Location: Mytholmroyd, West Yorks.......
    US, China, Saudi Arabia and India all lobbied to tone down the report. What a surprise, the world's biggest CO2 emitter, the 2 world's fastest growing CO2 emitters and the world's biggest oil exporter. The scientists' undiluted predictions would indeed be more severe.

    It'll please the 's'not 'appening' brigade though won't it?? We will end up watching our world go down the pans whilst the detractors plead that they only wanted confirmation.

    I feel we are now entering the 'real' first impacts of global warming that will be both unmistakable but also self reinforcing. The countries that are 'muddying the waters' must believe that there will be a 'techno-fix' on the horizon as they are all wide open for devastating impacts within their own borders......better hope they know something we don't instead of complaining that we don't know something well enough.

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    Posted
  • Location: Larbert
  • Location: Larbert
    We’re hurting Britain, not saving the planet

    Chris Gibson-Smith, chairman of the London Stock Exchange, sees a greater threat to our economic future than global warming

    Climate change is a fascinating subject. At stake are some huge issues that really matter, so it is a subject that we should be debating in a deep and thoughtful fashion. As a scientist at my core, though, I feel that the quality of the public debate has been awful. It has been characterised by exaggerations, extreme assertions by people with no understanding of the science, and character assassinations of those who question the orthodoxy.

    Against this backdrop, I risk being branded a heretic for sharing my views. But I do so as someone with an above average commitment to the environment and understanding of the issues at hand; as a practising Earth scientist for 20 years, with a PhD in Earth chemistry; as a former member of the Sustainability Commission; and having sat on a number of business forums on the environment.

    To begin to understand climate change, it needs to be emphasised that we are actually in the middle of an ice age. We are in a warm phase of that ice age, but we are definitely in an ice age, and what is clear is that we can expect to go back towards a period of deep cooling again, possibly within the next 1,000 years. Indeed, between the 1950s and 1970s, when the planet last experienced a period of cooling, scientists were worried that we were moving back into the next major ice pulse. When this cooling does happen, the northern half of the Northern hemisphere may become uninhabitable.

    One of the possible reasons we are in this ice age, is that carbon dioxide concentrations in the atmosphere appear to be at their lowest levels for nearly 50 million years. During the last ice pulse that culminated 20,000 years ago, when Britain was covered in ice sheets miles thick, carbon dioxide concentrations were as low as 190 parts per million, which is equivalent to 0·019per cent of the atmosphere. They have now risen to around 379 parts per million, but 50 million years ago they were at 1,400 per million. The probable reason for this relatively low level of carbon dioxide is that volcanic activity has gradually declined over the past 50 million years, so the only source of new CO in the atmosphere has been declining while other processes, such as weathering and photosynthesis, have continued to strip carbon out of the atmosphere and bury it in the earth.

    It is clear that carbon dioxide is one factor that influences climate. Without the greenhouse effect it creates, the planet would be a permanent ice ball and there would be no life as we know it. Historically, rises in CO seem to have followed temperature increases, but human activities are now introducing something new that hasn’t happened before.

    Oddly, however, although we are raising the carbon dioxide levels in a linear fashion, the temperature is not behaving in the way it should if there was a simple linkage. Clearly, there are things going on which we do not yet understand. This is true of climate change as a whole. The science is complex and can only begin to be understood by blending astronomy, geology, biology, oceanography and meteorology. There are many uncertainties and disagreements about how these disciplines contribute and interact with each other. There is still great uncertainty over the role of the Sun, how the Earth’s orbit affects climate, the way the oceans take up carbon dioxide and the role biology has to play in the planet’s climate.

    This all makes it difficult to predict what is going to happen, and it reduces the credibility of those who suggest that the science is certain. In fact, the predictions give a wide range of possible outcomes and at the moment the temperature changes are tracking the low end of the forecasts. The current trend could take us back to European temperatures of 1,000 years ago within 100 years.

    When it comes to building our economic policy responses, which is where my interest as chairman of the London Stock Exchange comes in, we need to accept the level of uncertainty that exists. This may make the task more challenging, but the alternative, the way we are going about it at the moment, is very likely to produce some bad answers. Simplistic responses are likely to be damaging. Take 4x4s, for instance. While I can’t see the point of them in towns, taxing them in terms of climate is meaningless, except on a symbolic level. Aviation has also been unfairly targeted. It makes up a tiny part of the total contribution to emissions, around 2 per cent but, like taxes on tobacco and alcohol, it has been carefully targeted not to change behaviour while raising large amounts of tax revenue.

    What would make sense would be longterm tax and economic policies aimed at raising the manufacturing efficiency of our economy, and so improving our competitiveness while limiting environmental damage. We need long-term reductions in the amount of energy required to produce each additional £1 of GDP, in the efficiency of buildings, transportation and power generation.

    Ultimately, though, we have to accept that the UK is a minnow in climate terms. We are responsible for less than 2per cent of global emissions, so even if we were to become perfect, our contribution would be negligible. There is no point in damaging our competitiveness and reducing our GDP if the planet will never notice.

    What we should be doing is focusing on a related issue over which there is greater certainty: resource depletion. Future development worldwide is likely to be increasingly dominated by competition for resources and raw materials, significantly raising costs. This country really ought to be looking for international collaboration in tackling the problems that will arise. Global challenges require global solutions. We need to bring the United States, the EU, China, India, Russia, Brazil, and the developing world into the equation because there are no solutions unless we do.

    This, of course, is a goal that has remained unachievable despite years of trying. So, there needs to be a steady long-term policy in the UK that aims to enrol the rest of the global community. As part of the European Union, we form a large enough block to begin to make a difference. Š Chris Gibson Smith is Chairman of the London Stock Exchange and a former group managing director at BP

    Yet another person giving an alternative

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    Posted
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks

    I must admit to being intrigued by that content.

    I've always maintained a degree of sceptisicm over AGW from the viewpoint that we have huge amounts of conflicting evidence.

    There is no doubt that the earth is warming, its irrefutable in my view. A bit like pretending the earth is flat and not round. What is still open to much very learned viewpoints is just how much human activity is affecting this warming.

    There was a very believable BBC 2 programme, I think in the late 80's, possibly early 90's which showed the European area likely to slip, over decades rather than centuries into a 'mini Ice Age' The chief exponent of that was the Uni Of East Anglia, with some support from the research side of the Met Office, albeit a minority.

    I keep saying this but I'll repeat it, the most important task of the world governments is to accept that the earth is warming, probably to accept the median of what this may mean in 50, 100 years ahead and get a plan of action to help those who will be affected. This is increasing desertification, so less food in some parts, rising sea levels so some areas becoming uninhabitable.

    A faint hope but I wonder what my grandchildren or more likely their grandchildren will be left with?

    John

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    Posted
  • Location: Lincolnshire coast
  • Location: Lincolnshire coast

    Chris Gibson-Smith, chairman of the London Stock Exchange. Well we're hardly goining to expect him to say that the long term future of shares is zilch - but that's what he'd have to do if he accepted AGW. More than his job's worth.

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    Posted
  • Location: Cheddar Valley, 20mtrs asl
  • Weather Preferences: Snow and lots of it or warm and sunny, no mediocre dross
  • Location: Cheddar Valley, 20mtrs asl
    Yet another person giving an alternative

    One of the most sensible responses to Climate Change that I've read in a very, long time. Well done M for posting.

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    Posted
  • Location: Mytholmroyd, West Yorks.......
  • Weather Preferences: Hot & Sunny, Cold & Snowy
  • Location: Mytholmroyd, West Yorks.......

    Why, when global dimming was recognised as a climate modifier in the latter part of the 90's do people still give credence to this "global cooling" notion?

    Yes, before imperial measurements were available we gave the temp stabilisation our best shots at theorizing it's meaning but as soon as the mechanisms for it were noted, measured, peer reviewed and accepted why must we permanently (so it seems) be regaled with tales of how we used to think we were headed for an ice age???? We used to think all ailments were in our humors but we don't hark back to that every time some-one falls sick do we??

    To listen to an economist bemoaning his precious GDP's, economic viabilities, competitiveness in the market place etc,etc when we are facing the largest challenge to humanity in over 70 thousand years sickens me. Where are our priorities? morality or money???

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    Posted
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks

    GW(not Global Warming!)

    They were sound comments that I referred to by, at the time, the leading meteorologists and climatologists, who sincerely believed that a 'mini Ice Age' was a real possibility.

    It is also true that we are, either on the edge of or actually in an expected so called Ice Age, albeit not at all noticeable due to the overriding GW that is occurring. Bit contradictory I know but then so much of both meteorology and climatology, in my 40 years experience as a professional, is just that.

    An open mind but with all of us doing our bit to help alleviate GW and also to pressurise our politicians to get off their pontificating backside and prepare the world for what is virtually certain to happen to many many millions due to GW.

    John

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    Posted
  • Location: Lincolnshire coast
  • Location: Lincolnshire coast

    I notice, Jethro, that you live at 194m asl. Hope you'll be happy to share with those of us at the present sea level - me and 60 million Bangladeshis - if need arises. But you won't be worried about that of course :help:

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    Posted
  • Location: Heswall, Wirral
  • Weather Preferences: Summer: warm, humid, thundery. Winter: mild, stormy, some snow.
  • Location: Heswall, Wirral
    GW(not Global Warming!)

    They were sound comments that I referred to by, at the time, the leading meteorologists and climatologists, who sincerely believed that a 'mini Ice Age' was a real possibility.

    It is also true that we are, either on the edge of or actually in an expected so called Ice Age, albeit not at all noticeable due to the overriding GW that is occurring. Bit contradictory I know but then so much of both meteorology and climatology, in my 40 years experience as a professional, is just that.

    An open mind but with all of us doing our bit to help alleviate GW and also to pressurise our politicians to get off their pontificating backside and prepare the world for what is virtually certain to happen to many many millions due to GW.

    John

    Assuming we are in this actual ice age, do you (opiniatively) suggest that this ice age, will or is diluting some of the warming that may be happening whether of cause it may be AGW or naturally occuring warming.

    In theory I would think if we were in what was meant to be a mini ice age that was being slowed down by another factor then wouldn't suggest AGW? It would surprise me if nature could produce a potential ice age then mask it with global warming surely it balances it out so it's not actually an ice age at all? Either it is or it isnt? afterall (+)-(-)=0?

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    Posted
  • Location: Larbert
  • Location: Larbert

    Seeing as how very little is mentioned about the polar regions, in particular Antartica, baffled me.

    Each time i've read something on here about that continent "melting", i've taken it with a pinch of salt; the same can be said for the whole 4AR IPCC report btw - i'll get back to that later.

    antarticlarge.jpg

    Left shows key areas of Antarctica, including the vast East Antarctic ice sheet. The image on the right shows which areas of the continent's ice are thickening (coloured yellow and red) and thinning (coloured blue).

    They say the antarctica peninsula is warming faster than anywhere than on the planet. They forgot to say that the rest of Antarctica [97% of it] is the coldest it's been for some time.

    AR4 report. This is the edited report then? I've read bits and pieces of this new one. Let's rewind to when the unedited AR4 was doing the rounds. All who read it willadmit to it being a pretty hard slog. The political folks rely on this kind of report, hoping Joe Public won't read, subsequently people like David Miliband jump on the bandwagon, and get all confused, but deem the world is [to be] dire.

    Anyway, at the time of the initial release of this report, i clearly remember typing something along the lines of could you get away with this in your work, writing a summary of another body of workers research..and then releasing the summary 5 mths before the actual research...after telling everyone you're going to edit the research so it agrees more closely with your summary? The answer was NO!.

    Then we had the shambles of not being allowed to quote or cite

    Second Order Draft Chapter 11 IPCC WG1 Fourth Assessment Report

    Do Not Cite or Quote 11-61 Total pages: 121

    11.3.7.4 Robust conclusions and uncertainties

    Why would that be...why would a study funded by your taxes not be available freely?

    Remember this gem? phd091606s.gif

    I'll continue with my own beliefs, thanks.

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    Posted
  • Location: Lincolnshire coast
  • Location: Lincolnshire coast

    >They say the antarctica peninsula is warming faster than anywhere than on the planet. They forgot to say that the rest of Antarctica [97% of it] is the coldest it's been for some time.

    Nobody is suggesting that the East Antarctic ice is going to melt next week. However, recent work on ice sheet dynamics is looking grim. The WAIS stability may be crucially dependant on blocking shelf ice and ice that is grounded on rock below sea level. This shelf ice is being eroded by by warming sea temperatures. Remember Larson B? The significance of meltwater descending crevasses and transferring energy to the glacier base has only recently become apparent. (Much of this work is too new to be counted in the IPCC reports to date.)

    If the Eastern Antarctic temperatures drop from -30 to -50 or whatever it makes not a jot of difference. But if the temperature of the ice on the fringes and under the WAIS changes from -0.5 to +0.5 it makes all the difference in the world.

    Mondy, forget about Eastern Antarctic please. If the "Peninsular is warming faster than anywhere on the planet", then it's time to panic.

    It's time to panic.

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    Posted
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks
    Assuming we are in this actual ice age, do you (opiniatively) suggest that this ice age, will or is diluting some of the warming that may be happening whether of cause it may be AGW or naturally occuring warming.

    In theory I would think if we were in what was meant to be a mini ice age that was being slowed down by another factor then wouldn't suggest AGW? It would surprise me if nature could produce a potential ice age then mask it with global warming surely it balances it out so it's not actually an ice age at all? Either it is or it isnt? afterall (+)-(-)=0?

    Like I tried to say Stephen, NOTHING in meteorology or climatology is ever without some question over it. In both sciences, as sciences they are, there are just too many un-knowns at the start of every hypothesis or argument trying to prove one thing or another.

    I agree with people questioning what ANY scientific body let alone once politicians get their hands on anything but I do really believe that we all, on Net Wx and everywhere else keep an open mind on is there AGW one can hardly disagree that the earth is warming , overall, note my terminology. It really is like trying to pretend the earth is flat. Its happening there is no question. What is in doubt is why? Is it natural GW or is it human assisted/caused, by the term AGW?

    We do need to keep our eye on what the problem is and not be sidestepped into false cul de sacs which simply muddy the problem.

    The earth, overall, is warming. Can we do anything to stop it - doubtful.? Can we slow the process down -possibly?

    Most important, can we take positive steps to try and lessen the more obvious problems, from even a modest continuation of the warming, and the answer is of course we can.

    It will take some time, sadly years I expect, and only when some largish western chunk starts to go under water. By then it will be perhaps too late to prevent heaven knows what strife. But it needs all of us, in every country to get our respective politicians to start the process now.

    John

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    Posted
  • Location: Cheddar Valley, 20mtrs asl
  • Weather Preferences: Snow and lots of it or warm and sunny, no mediocre dross
  • Location: Cheddar Valley, 20mtrs asl
    I notice, Jethro, that you live at 194m asl. Hope you'll be happy to share with those of us at the present sea level - me and 60 million Bangladeshis - if need arises. But you won't be worried about that of course :help:

    If you read the article again, you may come to understand that it argues for action on a global level, for what is a global problem. His assertion that Britain can make very little difference as a nation on it's own, is an accurate assessment. Find me any evidence which tells otherwise.

    Your assumption that I do not worry or would worry about you or 60 million Bangladeshis is arrogant and offensive. Made particularly more so since I have worked in the third world, trying to assist they subsistant lives. I did three years as a VSO volunteer; I know first hand the problems faced by third world inhabitants. Do you? Do you give ten percent of your monthly income to charitable foundations to continue to help? Some of us do, so don't sodding judge from your sea level platform; put your money where your mouth is as the saying goes.

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    Posted
  • Location: Lincolnshire coast
  • Location: Lincolnshire coast
    arrogant and offensive.
    My unreserved aplogies if you took it that way. The smiley was to indicate tounge firmly in cheek.

    But more seriously, I just don't buy into the arguement that because Britain is a such a small player we should not make every effort to improve our own backyard. When Gibson-Smith says "There is no point in damaging our competitiveness and reducing our GDP if the planet will never notice," I think his position is ethically untenable. But more importantly, the rest of the planet will notice. As Chairman of the London Stock Exchange Gibson-Smith knows that the UK is in a very influential position. But he is a contrarian so will not want to promote that influence.

    He does raise the issue of resource depletion, but that, surely, is mere deflection. If he were serious in thinking that resource depletion is a more urgent problem than climate change he would bringing Peak Oil to our attention. The looming energy gap of course, has the potential for wiping out the Stock Market before climate change.

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    Posted
  • Location: Dorset
  • Location: Dorset
    How much of the very latest research on ice field dynamics has been taken into account? The lastest research here and in other areas of feedback mechanisms, is pushing the position towards the bad side of doubt.

    Quite agree the section on Ice sheets particularly the WAIS has obviously been seriously tempared/toned down by politics.

    The answer to this though is to get some serious papers out and increase our knowledge, the problem at the amount is that although everything is pointing towards a worse and worse scenario from the current research there is very little published science to back it up so it can easily be watered down by the anti's.

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    Posted
  • Location: Lincolnshire coast
  • Location: Lincolnshire coast

    Yes, someone will correct me if I'm wrong, but I think papers published since early summer 2006 didn't didn't make it into this round of IPCC reports. Still, there's more than enough there for any rational policy maker to argue for a complete turn around of much of what we do.

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    I believe the models have predicted a thickening of the ice sheets, it's a symptom of global warming. Warmer seas = more evaporation = more moisture in the air = more precipitation = thickening ice. So to say that thickening ice sheets contradict global warming is a bit wrong.

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    Posted
  • Location: Lincoln, Lincolnshire
  • Weather Preferences: Sunshine, convective precipitation, snow, thunderstorms, "episodic" months.
  • Location: Lincoln, Lincolnshire

    I am still yet to see substantiated counterarguments to the measured arguments of John above; it's easy to debunk the AGW extremists, but those with a more middle-of-the-road, yet pro-active, perspective seem to have it nailed on as far as I'm concerned.

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    Posted
  • Location: Near Newton Abbot or east Dartmoor, Devon
  • Location: Near Newton Abbot or east Dartmoor, Devon

    Seriously, do you really believe what you read at 'snark central'? I tell you the sound of grinding axes there is unbearable. Still, from your POV at least, there are few dissenting vioces there now, and any that do dare to post get jumped out by several of the snarkers.

    That said, apart from the above I've a lot of time for CA :drinks:

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