Climate Science


Taking up Reena’s Exploration Challenge #84
by Reena Saxena. The challenge is to write based on above image. Thanks for the mind prompt Reena.

The science is conclusive, the evidence is in, there is no debate, 97% of climate scientists agree that the earth is warming due to human release of carbon dioxide into the earth’s atmosphere. The ice is melting, sea levels are increasing, there are more extreme weather conditions and unless we do something now the planet and its inhabitants are heading for disaster twelve years from now.

The current climate change debate is centred on Carbon Dioxide (CO2) emissions from human use, creating a greenhouse gas effect which is unnaturally warming the planet. CO2 is the source of all life on earth. CO2 has also varied in quantities throughout history. Current CO2 levels in the atmosphere are 400 parts per million (ppm), death of plants occur around 150 ppm. It would seem logical that higher volumes of CO2 levels are a surer way to sustain life than falling CO2 lower levels.

The temperature of a planet’s surface is determined by the balance between the heat absorbed by the planet from sunlight, heat emitted from its core, and thermal radiation emitted back into space. (Emissivity-Wikipedia). Of the 100% heat that the earth receives from the sun an average of 30% is returned to space through the albedo effect. The albedo effect describes white surfaces reflecting the sun’s heat and dark surfaces absorbing the sun’s heat. Thus icebergs and snow reflect the sun’s heat and dark seas absorb the heat. Clouds also have a great albedo effect, high level clouds absorb sunlight and low level clouds reflect sunlight back to space. Yet in many climate change models the impact of clouds are omitted from the equation.

The Earth’s atmosphere reaches 372 miles from the Earth’s surface and performs an important function in keeping the Earth’s temperature in a range where life can thrive and reproduce. This atmosphere consists of 78% nitrogen, 21% oxygen, .93% argon, .04% carbon dioxide and .03% other gases.

A major influence on climate is the earths wobble and orbit changes around the sun which effects solar variation on this planet. Solar flares and sunspots also add to the variability of predicting climate.

The discussions by scientists, media and politicians to-day is based solely on human emissions of Carbon Dioxide CO2 into the atmosphere. The greater the emissions, the greater the green house effect, leading to increased warming of the planet. Or so the climate models assume. Some questions to consider. What is the ultimate level of CO2 we need to survive? CO2 levels have been greater in the past than current levels, so what’s the big deal? If a CO2 increase from 200 ppm to 400 ppm increases the earth’s temperature by 1 degree does it naturally follow that the earth’s temperature will increase by 1 degree for every 200 ppm added?

If we agree that the planet is warming. Is this due to human interaction or the natural cycle of this planet? This is where I get very irritated over the whole discussion.

There is an old maxim ” a theory that explains everything, explains nothing”. Scientists seem fixated on human carbon emissions to the detriment of alternative theories of climate change. This makes me suspicious. Where are the enquiring natures? Where are the debates? Climate science is becoming a religion in itself with carbon emissions as its dogma. Any alternative view is heresy and must be ridiculed and closed down without discussion. Scientists seem to be in the forefront of politicizing the climate change debate with exaggerated predictions. Is it because they see this as a way of receiving government grants to fund their research.

The following is a March 25,2019 press release from the United States Department of Justice. ” Duke University agrees to pay $112.5 million to settle false claims related to scientific research between 2006-2018. Duke submitted claims to the Environment Protection Agency (EPA) that contained false or fabricated data”.

I viewed on YouTube, a University of Oxford professor who believes in climate change, Tim Palmer, confessing that modelling climate change is a huge problem in theoretical physics. Also on YouTube, a University of Bath mathematician who is a climate change advocate, admitted that mathematicians could not represent all the important processes that go into determining climate as there is a natural unpredictability in complicated systems. Modelling climate change is based on formulating equations describing the physical system and solving these thousands/millions of equations using super computers. I’m unsure of the risk of error, but would assume it’s pretty high.

We have a very complex climate system. This complicated climate system, that is not completely understood by scientists because of a multitude of factors, is politicized and broken down into simplistic sound bites for public consumption. We are told that humans are greedy creatures that put economic wealth before the well being of our planet and our own survival. That humans want to destroy nature and the environment in pursuit of the good life. The public is constantly whipped into mass hysteria by the media, in presenting a barrage of extreme weather conditions on television and social media. Instead of lazy rhetoric and overblown images we need real debates and new international scientific organizations that are willing to look past politics and actually plan for the future.

We need to separate the planetary pollution issue from the climate change issue. No sensible minded person wants to see this planet become one huge garbage dump. So we should do our best to encourage governments to legislate against overuse of plastics, packaging of consumer products, better use of recycling and clean up of our inland waterways,seas and oceans. Scientific and economic resources should be redirected from carbon issues to more tangible anti-pollution measures. But let’s not confuse these pollution issues with climate change.

The carbon debate is just one component of a larger issue. If the effects of climate challenge are a natural evolution of our planet, then we need to plan for the effects of this change on future generations e.g. rethink housing zoning in low lying lands or close to large bodies of water.

Let’s not get carried away with hysteria, but have a rational, informed debate on climate. The human race must evolve along with the climate cycles of our planet and so we humans should be trying to dance in harmony with our planet and each other.

23 thoughts on “Climate Science

  1. Thank you, Len. The Earth has done this to herself on several occasions in factual history. Unless there is someone to blame the Ice age on. I think humans would be better off researching survival as a species when climate changes rather than than laying blame and trying to stop something that could very well be a natural course of events.

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  2. You are right Kieran. If scientists have the good will and courage to pursue the truth instead of pandering to political expedience and government grants than perhaps progress can be made on climate change.

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  3. Thank you Annie, I did read it along with numerous other scientists who are all experts in their field and all with varying opinions on whether the current climate change issue is natural or man made. It is a very contentious subject with diverse view points. Thanks for reading this Annie and expressing your opinion.

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    1. But you asked for reasoned discussion. Why are you not giving readers the benefit of a knowledgeable viewpoint that they would otherwise have no access to?

      This issue is not contentious among a huge swath of the most learned people—and many believe time is running out. I do not want my grandchildren to face a potentially disastrous future. I’m sure you feel the same way.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Thanks for your comments Annie. I am sure readers have access to the same information as I had and can make their own informed decisions on the subject. I can see you are very passionate about this subject. I may do Climate Science part 2.

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    1. I believe you are incorrect in that regard. My friend, a very prominent actuary, gave a perspective on how the insurance industry regards climate change and specified that they acknowledge and do their business accepting the premise that it is manmade.
      My question is why you would remove his comments, which I went to the trouble of copying and pasting from my blog to yours, when you claim to be seeking reasoned discussion. I am deeply disappointed.

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  5. The only comment I received from you Annie was a url regarding NASA’s views on climate change. You posted this in the comment section on your blog as a reply to my comments. I have not received any other information from you. Where did you post it to…..and don’t get me going on the insurance industry. I have my own stories to tell.

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    1. I posted it here, and I saw it move from the reply box onto your blog. I had assumed you must have removed it. If that wasn’t the case, I apologize.

      My point about the insurance industry was not to hold them up as any kind of exemplars, for sure. It was simply to point out that people who are risk-averse to the nth degree make their business decisions based on their belief that human-created climate change is real and concerning.

      I will just add my actuarial friend’s conclusion:

      “In the insurance world it is widely understood that, like the risk from asteroids and solar flares, the risk from current human-induced climate change is real and ongoing.

      “With all three risks, there are actions we can take that might mitigate the damaging effects of those hazards. However, we cannot eliminate asteroids or solar flares. On the other hand, the root cause of the current climate change is human activity. The useful discussion is about the best ways to address the root cause, and about how quickly that might be done.”

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    2. Len,
      Please help me clear this up. If you’re sure you never got my copied comment from my friend, then I offer you my sincere apology. It could have been a computer glitch, but it certainly didn’t seem that way. I am comfortable disagreeing with you on the topic—although you’re right; I feel especially passionate about this one. What bothered me was what I perceived to be your disregarding my response entirely.

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      1. Annie I am very conscientious in ensuring that I reply to all comments on WordPress. If a person takes the time to comment than the least I can do is to respond. I can guarantee you that I have not received anything from you in regard to the assurance article. I have my WordPress settings set for all your blogs to go directly into my email account. I have no idea what happened to your climate change email. Lost in WordPress cyberspace I presume.

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