Have we ever been this close to realizing our own extinction?

Discussion in 'Conversations Forum' started by burton420, Jan 4, 2008.

  1. earthy smells

    earthy smells Member

    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    USA, MA
    But we have essentially ruled out the sun's influence on this, correct?
    And volcano influence..
    And most non-anthropogenic causes.....

    That is my understanding.

    Temps seem to directly reflect co2....we know man is dumping in X amount......we know the global ecosystem's inputs.....we see the change....we rule out non-anthro causes.....seems like we're 90% sure man is causing an overall warming. We see it in the oceans, on land....how can anyone say that man is less than 50% of the cause of global warming?
     
  2. photopro

    photopro Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,455
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Siloam Springs, AR, USA
  3. earthy smells

    earthy smells Member

    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    USA, MA
    All of this relies on short term observations, rather than long term ones.

    Suddenly we see a dip in temps and everyone jumps on it thinking global warming may be over? C'mon..
     
  4. soccerdad

    soccerdad Active Member 10 Years

    Messages:
    424
    Likes Received:
    12
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC, Dunbar area
    The data problem is not what scientists know, it is what they are allowed to say.

    Lamarkism - the theory that acquired characteristics could be inherited - fit into Communist philosophy, and so was mandatory teaching in the former soviet union at one time. Set their biology back by a decade.

    We sneered, or at least my colleagues did, but the revelations in the last two years about how the US administration prevents the publication of global warming statistics or any honest mention of it are equally troubling. Makes it impossible really to rely on anything coming from that country. And presumably mosst readers of this site know what Canada's government thinks of science.

    I am impressed by scientists. not by politicians. The scientists know what is going on. Problem is, the politicians dictate what the scientists say in many countries.
     
  5. earthy smells

    earthy smells Member

    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    USA, MA
    This is what all this new hubbub is about:

    [​IMG]

    I don't see how people can go so crazy over this when we see the exact same thing happened near 98...while overall, the trend is increasing. How can we be so short-sighted as to draw such attention to this drop and use it in a way to claim that the globe is actually cooling over the long term? We simply can't make that claim and it's weak according to right here right now status quo of our understanding of the climate.
     
  6. KarinL

    KarinL Well-Known Member 10 Years

    Messages:
    1,058
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Vancouver
    Earthy Smells, your dictatorial side is showing again. In several posts through this thread you have shown, again, a complete lack of respect for peoples' own information-gathering capacities and for their right to come to their own conclusions different from yours, and you are obviously not even entertaining the possibility that you could be wrong or partly wrong. Youth and activism can be a toxic combination - I cringe at some of my own behaviour when I was your age and even older, on one cause or another. And young activists are ripe for exploitation by people like our own David Suzuki, an old man who should know better but who recently called for politicians to be put in jail if they did not show allegiance to the global warming agenda.

    So I don't expect this link to interest you, but others here might find it of interest, a recent column from the (Canadian) National Post by Lorne Gunter, quoting some scientists who are taking a new look at climate data: http://www.nationalpost.com/most_popular/story.html?id=332289

    I'll quote the useful bits:
    "And it's not just anecdotal evidence that is piling up against the climate-change dogma.

    According to Robert Toggweiler of the Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory at Princeton University and Joellen Russell, assistant professor of biogeochemical dynamics at the University of Arizona -- two prominent climate modellers -- the computer models that show polar ice-melt cooling the oceans, stopping the circulation of warm equatorial water to northern latitudes and triggering another Ice Age (a la the movie The Day After Tomorrow) are all wrong.

    "We missed what was right in front of our eyes," says Prof. Russell. It's not ice melt but rather wind circulation that drives ocean currents northward from the tropics. Climate models until now have not properly accounted for the wind's effects on ocean circulation, so researchers have compensated by over-emphasizing the role of manmade warming on polar ice melt.

    But when Profs. Toggweiler and Russell rejigged their model to include the 40-year cycle of winds away from the equator (then back towards it again), the role of ocean currents bringing warm southern waters to the north was obvious in the current Arctic warming.

    Last month, Oleg Sorokhtin, a fellow of the Russian Academy of Natural Sciences, shrugged off manmade climate change as "a drop in the bucket." Showing that solar activity has entered an inactive phase, Prof. Sorokhtin advised people to "stock up on fur coats."

    He is not alone. Kenneth Tapping of our own National Research Council, who oversees a giant radio telescope focused on the sun, is convinced we are in for a long period of severely cold weather if sunspot activity does not pick up soon.

    The last time the sun was this inactive, Earth suffered the Little Ice Age that lasted about five centuries and ended in 1850. Crops failed through killer frosts and drought. Famine, plague and war were widespread. Harbours froze, so did rivers, and trade ceased.

    It's way too early to claim the same is about to happen again, but then it's way too early for the hysteria of the global warmers, too."


    SoccerDad, these scientists don't seem to have any trouble speaking out. The question is whether they can be heard over the sounds of construction coming from the global warming empire builders. Heck, the Suzuki Foundation alone has forty employees, if I recall correctly.
     
  7. photopro

    photopro Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,455
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Siloam Springs, AR, USA
    This will be my final post on this thread.

    Regrettably, we are now to a point of no longer discussing the issue, including what each of us can do, but staking our positions which appear to be unalterable. Since I first read the proposition of this thread, "Have we ever been this close to realizing our own extinction?", I have been troubled by the theme. It appears the intent may not have been to discuss current problems facing man-kind but to set in motion a forum to "prove" man is destined to his own extinction. I cannot accept that premise, at least not on the basis of currently known scientific fact. And many honest scientists will not immediately accept that notion.

    Throughout my posts I have attempted to point out we need to do our part to limit our impact on the planet. I've seen the impact man can make on the planet, and I never said anywhere global warming is over. But I cannot simply accept the "theory" that Miami will be under 50 feet of water in the next 50 years (or thereabouts) while the rich still fly around in their private jets and insist the rest of us clean up the globe. Either we all do our part, or none of us do anything. Donating $100 every now and then to plant a few trees will solve nothing.

    I do not respond well to threats. I do not believe many people respond well to people yelling "the sky is falling, the sky is falling". Most would rather listen to reason. And many knowledgeable scientists disagree, or at least have problems accepting, ALL the "theories" and notions currently being proposed as "fact".

    According to the counter on this thread, close to 1000 people have read at least a portion of this discussion. I seriously doubt all of those people have read it all. My guess would be that if you have already accepted the premise the Earth is doomed, you may have found this thread of greater interest. But I would venture that at least as many people who accept the theory the earth is doomed also believe this entire thread is rubbish. Only around 20 people even bothered to comment. The rest just read something and passed it by. Few people enjoy being preached at in a dictatorial fashion. Many do respond to well reasoned thought. In my estimation, the best input to this entire chain of thought was posted by member bedixon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zORv8wwiadQ

    If you haven't viewed the video, do it now. That is reasoning, not preaching. It is logic, not scare tactics. I doubt scare tactics will ever work to make the point of global warming to the masses as fact. People as a group simply do not appreciate that type of approach. You can scream at people all day long that if you don't obey the law you'll go to jail, but still the prisons are full!

    Most have already made up their minds, I have not. I still read and attempt to learn. But I have determined it is better if I do something now, rather than wait and hope. Regardless of what you believe about global warming, consider what you can do to limit your impact. But I would guess few people will learn much, or change their position, by being told repeatedly "the sky is falling". And we're all doomed to extinction. At least a large group of us always have hope and faith in our ability as a species. After all, we've cured many diseases, gone to the moon, and performed some pretty miraculous events in our own lifetimes.

    So if you choose to continue to preach what you believe, and you believe we are all doomed, more power to you. I prefer to try to learn and do what I can. The scientific jury is still out on exactly what is causing the global weather phenomenon. It may well be as much a natural phenomenon as man-made. But the fact remains, we have had both periods of warming followed by cooling followed by warming and possibly again followed by cooling in the last century. Sorry if that does not fit into your personal theory, but that is scientific fact. In global history we've had periods when the bulk of the world was tropical and the bulk was under ice. And no one ever said the warming phenomenon is over due to recent information! But scientists appear to be seeing something new may be happening.

    Fortunately, there are still enough people left on the planet that would prefer to do something rather than just sit, cry and preach disaster. In the end, reason will prevail. And I highly doubt man will intentionally create his/her own doom. But I know for certain many of you disagree with me on that point.

    I yield the thread. Feel free to finish it with your personal thoughts we are all destined to extinction and there is nothing we can do!
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 16, 2010
  8. KarinL

    KarinL Well-Known Member 10 Years

    Messages:
    1,058
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Vancouver
    I think the two comments above call for specific rebuttal.

    Knowledge has been spreading around the globe for thousands of years, long before the advent of literacy much less before the advent of the internet, and an argument could be made that less "connected" societies actually knew much more than most of us do today. The internet certainly spreads knowledge faster, and there seems to be more knowledge around, but our average capacity to use knowledge is not precisely at its peak today.

    Witness the question in the quote.
     
  9. Daniel Mosquin

    Daniel Mosquin Esteemed Contributor UBC Botanical Garden Forums Administrator Forums Moderator 10 Years

    Messages:
    9,993
    Likes Received:
    340
    Location:
    Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
    I suggest avoiding quotes from Gunter's opinion pieces in the future.

    Here's Tapping's reply to what he is being credited with saying:

    via Leanleft

    In that opinion piece, Gunter also wrote:

    *sigh* Well, not really... it has recovered to the same extent as 2005's winter thickness, but it is still below the historical mean.

    sea_ice_anomaly.jpg

    I've commented on Sorokhtin previously.

    ...

    As for the comments that the jury is still out,

    Beyond the Ivory Tower: The Scientific Consensus on Climate Change

    Note that this predates the most recent IPCC report.

    Also, for a few of the other arguments:

    A guide to facts and fictions about climate change (PDF) (from The Royal Society)
     
  10. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

    Messages:
    20,178
    Likes Received:
    319
    Location:
    WA USA (Z8)
    As with other environmental issues the bulk of the vested interest will be held by those denying a human responsibility. While it is true numerous environmental organizations have arisen over the years and these are likely to do things to maintain themselves, like all organizations, their main or at least original goal will not be financial rewards based on exploitation of the environment, or other activities (manufacturing cars, refining fuels, whatever) prompting them to claim a detrimental effect is not being produced. And the amount of income derived from environmental groups tooting their horns will be a tiny fraction of that made by those profiting from keeping things as they are.
     
  11. KarinL

    KarinL Well-Known Member 10 Years

    Messages:
    1,058
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Vancouver
    Wrong, Ron. The vested interest will be held by those who can make money from a state of panic. If you analyze how environmental organizations can make the most money, it is not by succeeding in protecting the environment. As with most bureaucracies, donations and grants are garnered by there being at least the appearance of big bad threats that need to be researched and educated about. They have more work to do the worse the state of the environment is.

    Environmental organizations possess the same primal urge to build empires that every other human endeavor has. Global warming, whether it is true or not, is not the first and will not be the last bogeyman that is used to generate panic - look at the history of Greenpeace. It doesn't really matter whether their empire is as big as the polluters' empire - as long as there is room for them to grow, they will sacrifice truth and create a culture of oppressing opposition to ensure that the panic button remains pressed. That culture already exists - why else would Tapping be so patently eager to confirm his compliance with the panic agenda? He gives no specifics as to how he was misquoted or what he did actually say, and he takes great pains to articulate that he supports the the governing climate change dogma. Why? Can you say "protect my funding??"

    It is really immaterial whether it is true or not that the planet is warming. As Bedixon says and Photopro emphasizes, it is logical to practice environmental stewardship whether it is warming or cooling that is coming our way. What is material is who is building empires at the expense of scientific objectivity.

    As an environmental fanatic for some twenty years and an analyst of organizational behaviour, I find the behaviour of the organizations marshalling the climate change evidence to be far more frightening than the evidence they marshall.

    I mean, in truth, who cares if we become extinct? If we do such damage to the environment, how could that be a bad thing? Being non-extinct and governed by zealots is a far more worrisome prospect.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 16, 2010
  12. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

    Messages:
    20,178
    Likes Received:
    319
    Location:
    WA USA (Z8)
    You are saying that response drummed up to global warming will generate more income than that which those profiting from the existing greenhouse gas generating activities all over the world make.

    I hardly think so.
     
  13. KarinL

    KarinL Well-Known Member 10 Years

    Messages:
    1,058
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Vancouver
    No - the amount of money being earned by the oil companies etc. is immaterial to the environmental groups (although they use the fact of it as a fundraising motivator). They are on their own growth curve, and don't care from which other segment the money comes. Growth, not comparative growth, is the primal urge.
     
  14. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

    Messages:
    20,178
    Likes Received:
    319
    Location:
    WA USA (Z8)
    Why is this the important focus instead of what is motivating commercial interests saying we have nothing to do with global warming?
     
  15. KarinL

    KarinL Well-Known Member 10 Years

    Messages:
    1,058
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Vancouver
    Commercial interests are protecting the business they are in, while environmental organizations are advancing the business they are in. They form a symbiotic whole that is beneficial to both.
     
  16. paladin16

    paladin16 Member

    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Mendon, Mi, USA
    The Earth has always rebuilt itself after"natural" desasters like fires and volcanoes and flood. The problem is it can't repair nuclear waste and pollutions of all kinds.....I mean after thousands of years after humans are dead it would be able to set things back to what it was thousands of years before now...but that would take longer than our life time and for it to work the human factor would either have to be gone or helping the process (Reduce reuse recycle--find better energy source, ect.) Its really troubling because there are so many people and not everyone will help so the problem will never stop. BUT people living right now certaintly don't have it as bad as it could be. Think about the "black death" didn't like one out of three people in the entire population die from that? Don't forget all the people who were blamed and burned alive for it. People living back then thought is was the end of the world. Also, think about the "dust bowl" a lot of people living in that mess thought it was the end....but farming practices changed and it got better.
     
  17. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

    Messages:
    20,178
    Likes Received:
    319
    Location:
    WA USA (Z8)
    >The problem is it can't repair nuclear waste and pollutions of all kinds<

    Yep. It's different now. And the planet lingering on as a wasteland - with or without us - wouldn't be any kind of victory. What we need to be working on is maintaining a quality existence for those who already have it, while somehow letting the many more people who don't in the door.
     
  18. lorax

    lorax Rising Contributor 10 Years

    Messages:
    4,777
    Likes Received:
    5
    Location:
    Toronto, Ontario
    Wow, a lot of finger-pointing and polemic going on here...

    I'll weigh in because I happen to agree with PhotoPro - ultimately it doesn't matter what (or who) the cause of the current global climate trends is, what really matters is our reaction to it. The blame game is pretty pointless if we're all gonna fry, but the jury is still out on that matter.

    I figure that responsible environmental stewardship is the way to go, along with a return to local (as opposed to factory-farmed for example) production of food, which is far more environmentally sound and sustainable.

    So what if it hurt the economy? If the stake is human survival, I'd gladly return to a bartered system of trade.
     
  19. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

    Messages:
    20,178
    Likes Received:
    319
    Location:
    WA USA (Z8)
    Attaining responsible stewardship - environmental or otherwise - requires those in positions of power believe in it and do it. That's why it matters what and who's contributing to global warming, and who may think they will benefit from it being denied there is a human cause - or that global warming even exists.
     
  20. lorax

    lorax Rising Contributor 10 Years

    Messages:
    4,777
    Likes Received:
    5
    Location:
    Toronto, Ontario
    Not necessarily, I think; if enough people do it on a personal level it can have the same effect as governements or corporations picking up the line. That's what's happening here in Ecuador, with fairly high success.

    On a person-to-person level, very few people in Ecuador deny that some sort of change is going on with the environment. The difference is that here, the people seem to have taken matters into their own hands. It's pretty much killed off monoculture, pesticides, and factory farming, and there's extensive research and development on alternative energy sources here. (Of course, we have active volcanoes so geothermal options are easily accessible...)

    The national newspaper publishes a weekly book insert on environmentally sustainable practices, highlighting a different topic each week; this week's insert was how to build your own windmill to generate power for your house or farm, and last week's was build your own biodigestors and composting toilets. I look forward to next week's installment, which will be greywater management through complimentary planting and settling beds. The government is finally getting in on this, and offers hefty subsidies to farmers who can prove ecologically sound and organic practices, as well as to regular joes who demonstrate that they're putting environmentally sound systems into their houses (ie wind generation, composting toilet, etc.) The goal is to be completely independant of energy importation and at the same time to reduce the demand for both water and petroleum products, and it looks like they might just manage it.

    I'm not in any way denying that people in positions of power need to recognize the need for environmental stewardship; what I'm trying to point out is that it's not a necessary first step. What I said before is that it's the reaction that counts more than the cause, and this is true on all levels but especially on the grassroots one.
     
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2008
  21. Liz

    Liz Well-Known Member 10 Years

    Messages:
    1,525
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Victoria Australia [cool temperate]
    Lorax this is very encouraging from your government. We have a good recycling program, some subsidies for rain water tanks, solar units. Some of our utilities are dabbling in the carbon off set area. I just hope my extra dollar per bill is going into the wind generator project. We also now have a new goverment that is thinking green and have joined the rest of the world and be able to have some input into global thinking. But I am still working down in the grass root level trying to get people to at least think about how we are trashing our planet and attempting to live with less. We unfortunatly use brown coal (huge supply) for our electricity. I have great hopes that they will come up with a method for cleaning the output. Again my dollar per bill at work. As a country we are very conscious of lack of water so farming to some degree is also changing to more sustainable. Certainly water conservation is high on the agenda. We have just been told it will be several more years before we come off restrictions down here. Hopefully by then gardening practices will have changed to sustainable and the mindset of hosing down lawns and paths will be a thing of the past. Great strides in drought resistant lawns are being made for those that still need them.

    Liz
     
  22. lorax

    lorax Rising Contributor 10 Years

    Messages:
    4,777
    Likes Received:
    5
    Location:
    Toronto, Ontario
    Jeez, in Australia where the wind whips wild over the wallaroos (sorry, I couldn't resist...)??? You guys could be leading the world in wind generation and you're using brown coal? That really sucks.

    i am a thread killer...
     
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2008
  23. Liz

    Liz Well-Known Member 10 Years

    Messages:
    1,525
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Victoria Australia [cool temperate]
    Yes you would think so. The other thing I can't undestand is WHY every house does not have solar panels. There must be a way these can be an affordable compnent of housing. In particular all new housing. I think the water tank is now compulsory on the new ones. There are a couple of tentative wind farms along the coast and I suppose it will happen. They are also looking at the hot rocks stuff in South Australia.

    http://www.abc.net.au/science/news/stories/2007/1940121.htm

    By the way do I detect Oz in some of your phrasings not just this note on the wallaroos :)
    Liz
     
  24. earthy smells

    earthy smells Member

    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    USA, MA
    too expensive, not efficient enough
     
  25. fernwood

    fernwood Member

    Messages:
    29
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    london GB
    re:the inviro zelots ...that same people jump up and down about gm food, and try to hijack any r&d done to lesson our agricultural foot print on the plant...they push bio fuels , neglecting to tell us that half of south American counties have gone into hyperdrive clearing forests so they can grow soya, for bio fuel ..our! have they forgot about the lungs of the world ? oh yeah! if you dare give them any data that doesn't fit their hypothesis( arctic ice back to normal)"it's just a blip on a downward facing spiral" bs ...if we had less people and maximize the land for the people we have already ..we don't need to occupy every square inch of this planet
     

Share This Page