Climate Change

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Didier
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Climate Change

Postby Didier » March 25th, 2014, 9:15 pm

Dave Dahl is a strong opponent of the idea of man-made global warning, and he will explain his take if you ask. Apparently his view isn't that uncommon among TV meteorologists.

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Re: Stadium Parking Ramp Air Rights Development

Postby David Greene » March 25th, 2014, 9:32 pm

Didier wrote:Dave Dahl is a strong opponent of the idea of man-made global warning, and he will explain his take if you ask. Apparently his view isn't that uncommon among TV meteorologists.
Who are not climatologists and generally don't seem to understand how modeling works. I've had this debate with my brother-in-law, a lead forcaster at the Storm Prediction Center.

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Re: Stadium Parking Ramp Air Rights Development

Postby min-chi-cbus » March 26th, 2014, 12:05 am

Didier wrote:Dave Dahl is a strong opponent of the idea of man-made global warning, and he will explain his take if you ask. Apparently his view isn't that uncommon among TV meteorologists.
I love Dave Dahl, but he's against the idea of man-made global climate change? I literally have a signed and framed photo of him (a joke from my wife, who thinks I worship him), but that comment makes me lose a lot of respect for him.

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Re: Stadium Parking Ramp Air Rights Development

Postby Silophant » March 26th, 2014, 6:02 am

My understanding is that a lot of meteorologists are, since they know better than anyone that you can't predict local weather more than a couple days out with any accuracy, so the idea that scientists are predicting global weather decades out seems preposterous. Thing is, climate isn't weather, and you can model it reasonably accurately on a macro scale.

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Re: Stadium Parking Ramp Air Rights Development

Postby min-chi-cbus » March 26th, 2014, 7:43 am

Silophant wrote:My understanding is that a lot of meteorologists are, since they know better than anyone that you can't predict local weather more than a couple days out with any accuracy, so the idea that scientists are predicting global weather decades out seems preposterous. Thing is, climate isn't weather, and you can model it reasonably accurately on a macro scale.
Let's not open that can of worms in this thread...

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Re: Stadium Parking Ramp Air Rights Development

Postby the kid » March 26th, 2014, 8:13 am

Global warming (or cooling) or whatever it's called now clearly doesn't belong in this post, but I can't let everything go by unchallenged. I know this is a surpise to the leftist urbanist enclave that inhabits this blog but contrary to what most of you believe, the "science isn't settled". There is A LOT of debate about the validity of anthropenic global warming, and the models proposed by the AGW crowd (the "alarmists") don't fit with empiric data.

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Re: Stadium Parking Ramp Air Rights Development

Postby mplsjaromir » March 26th, 2014, 8:26 am

Yeah! A cabal comprising 97% of climatologist would have fooled the world with "global warming" if wasn't for the plucky group of multi-national oil corporations and libertarian billionaires.

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mister.shoes
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Re: Climate Change

Postby mister.shoes » March 26th, 2014, 8:52 am

The science is settled. It's the political fallout of the science that is keeping it "open." For instance, WY rejecting education standards because the state depends so much on coal mining as part of its economy.
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Re: Climate Change

Postby m b p » March 26th, 2014, 9:08 am

There is no debate. The right wants people to believe there is a debate. The rest of the world has settled this.

We know that if a volcano throws up a certain amount of gas into the atmosphere it can increase the temperature of the earth. That has happened in the past and we've measured it. However, somehow, if a person does it, there's still a question about whether or not that affects anything.

We know that venus is 800 degrees... beacause it's clouded in Co2. Back on earth, people are throwing up gasses into the atmosphere and believing that it has no effect.

Sure, Co2 isn't the only gas involved in global warming. Sure, there are natural regulators, on Earth, that do there best to keep things in check... trees suck up Co2... water is more difficult to warm than land, the earth is 75% water... The thermohaline current pulls up cool water from the depths and pulls down warm water from the surface. However those regulators can only do so much. Put too much stress on any one of them and the whole thing fails.

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Re: Stadium Parking Ramp Air Rights Development

Postby David Greene » March 26th, 2014, 12:49 pm

the kid wrote:I know this is a surpise to the leftist urbanist enclave that inhabits this blog but contrary to what most of you believe, the "science isn't settled". There is A LOT of debate about the validity of anthropenic global warming, and the models proposed by the AGW crowd (the "alarmists") don't fit with empiric data.
The science is settled. The models are actually *conservative* wrt what's happening today, so it's hardly appropriate to call scientists "alarmists."

No, modeling isn't perfect and it never will be, but it doesn't have to be. It just has to be good enough to generally predict where we're heading, and in that regard, it's been right on. The amount of detail going into these models is incredible. The resolution of the models is shrinking rapidly. We're getting more and more honed in to the details but the macro trends have been clear for a long time and it's the macro trends that we should use to set policy.

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Re: Climate Change

Postby kiliff75 » March 26th, 2014, 6:44 pm

The debate has basically been long settled within the scientific community and only persists within parts of the public (and congress). The basic nature of scientific research and the peer review process give much acclaim to anyone who can conclusively disprove popular or longstanding hypotheses. However, the ship has sailed on the Anthropogenic Global Warming hypothesis. If someone could conclusively disprove it they would be set for life in their career...but dont expect anyone to disprove AGW anytime soon. Too many different lines of evidence (observational and modeling) support AGW being correct.

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Re: Stadium Parking Ramp Air Rights Development

Postby kiliff75 » March 26th, 2014, 6:53 pm

the kid wrote: There is A LOT of debate about the validity of anthropenic global warming, and the models proposed by the AGW crowd (the "alarmists") don't fit with empiric data.
I think it's worth clarifying that the models that are used to make projections do a really good job simulating changes in global temperatures in response to CO2 on timescales of several decades (the timescale that CO2 causes significant warming). They don't simulate changes in temperature over short periods (less than 20-30 years) when natural variability overwhelms the effect of CO2, which explains the recent poor model performance over the last 15-20 years.

https://www.skepticalscience.com/climat ... ediate.htm

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Nick
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Re: Climate Change

Postby Nick » March 26th, 2014, 7:07 pm

Out of curiosity, what could we do combat climate change that wouldn't be a good idea regardless of whether or not climate change is a massive conspiracy?

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Re: Climate Change

Postby FISHMANPET » March 26th, 2014, 7:25 pm

Image

Tyler
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Re: Climate Change

Postby Tyler » March 26th, 2014, 7:36 pm

Well, geoengineering stuff -- if it comes down to it. Nuclear power is controversial, certainly (though I am firmly pro-nuclear). I would say that things like wind power are not so much a "bad" idea -- just an insufficient idea. The problem with them is that people think its making a bigger difference than it is. You could also say "clean coal" is a bad idea compared to no coal. But that's kinda a pipe dream.
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Re: Climate Change

Postby mulad » March 26th, 2014, 8:41 pm

There have been several Google Tech Talks on nuclear reactors of various types, both fission and fusion. I think thorium reactors have gotten the broadest attention -- they use a different fuel cycle than the fission reactors we have today, which don't really allow for the creation of nuclear weapons materials, and (in theory) are safer to operate. We could probably use breeder reactors too, which are better at reusing nuclear "waste" by regenerating it into usable fuel, but they have proliferation issues.

The New Yorker recently ran a piece on ITER, a research tokamak fusion reactor being designed by an international consortium and being constructed in France. That sounds like quite the fiasco. Unaccountable budgets in the tens of billions of dollars, and a development timescale decades long.

It seems that there may be a resurgence of interest in other types of fusion reactors, particularly after a talk given by Robert Bussard at Google back in 2006. Since then, many amateurs have achieved fusion (though far from break-even) -- even some teenagers as young as 13 years old. There seem to be a number of groups now looking into the physics of what's needed in small, cheap designs, but Dr. Bussard estimated that it would take $200 million (or $40 million each year for 5 years) to scale up his former company's designs to something that could achieve break-even and become a commercial product.

There's another approach called focus fusion that sounds interesting, and is potentially the closest to achieving break-even, with perhaps the cheapest cost and lowest scale. Perhaps just a sustained input of a couple of million dollars per year.

I'd almost be willing to discard those guys as kooks, but about a year ago, a representative from Lockheed Martin's Skunk Works gave a talk about a "high beta fusion reactor" they were working on and hoped to prototype properly within around 4 years and scale up to production in about 8. The presentation seemed thin on details, but what he did say makes me think it's something along the lines of what Dr. Bussard had talked about.

There are rumors of the Chinese working on their own thorium reactors as well as an ITER clone. Unfortunately, it sounds like the U.S. Department of Energy has been unwilling to fund many alternatives to the big-buck projects, perhaps because they're so cheap. Some past research has happened with low budgets that have skipped under the radar of political movers in Washington, but attempts to scale them up grab just enough attention to shoot them down. For the price of a few interchanges, or a fraction of a big bridge or stadium, we're potentially screwing another generation to come. Or then again, maybe these ideas don't have any merit. I'd kind of rather spend the money and find out for sure.

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mister.shoes
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Re: Climate Change

Postby mister.shoes » March 26th, 2014, 9:18 pm

A LOT of very powerful people are set to lose a LOT of easy money if a clean, sustainable, [even just relatively] cheap source of energy is found that displaces fossil fuels.

See my aforelinked article about Wyoming refusing to accept science education standards because they expose the state's economy for what it is: entirely built upon the continued necessity of the Powder River Basin coal mines. I read recently that the power plant in Becker burns three (?) trainloads of coal per day. There are a lot of power plants in this country burning a lot of trainloads of coal that will all become dinosaurs (pun intended) if fusion or alternative fission works out. So really, it's no wonder that the politicians can never quite find the money necessary to scale up research thereof.
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Re: Climate Change

Postby Silophant » March 26th, 2014, 10:07 pm

mister.shoes wrote: I read recently that the power plant in Becker burns three (?) trainloads of coal per day.
Yep. Sherco uses about 3 80-car trains' worth of coal per day, and Allen S. King (Stillwater) uses about a 60-car train's worth. The coal industry is very, very motivated to fight clean energy.

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Anondson
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Re: Climate Change

Postby Anondson » March 26th, 2014, 10:19 pm

The U of M coal plant eats a bunch of coal too. They've looked at options getting off coal but keep failing to. All options are just too expensive. Feeding the University with coal is pretty much the entire reason the Dinkytown rail trench isn't vacated yet.

the kid
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Re: Climate Change

Postby the kid » March 26th, 2014, 10:49 pm

Saying the science is settled doesn't make it so. But I do love that phrase. That's what they said to Galileo. I remember when Al Gore said the North Pole would be ice free by, when was it, this summer, last summer? Or when the Met Office said kids in England would grow up "not knowing what snow was?" That was before the last two years set cold weather records across the UK. Most of the climate models around when Al Gore told us the science was settled predicted temperature rises by now on the order of 2-4 Deg C. But we've seen no warming globally since 1997. Let me repeat…no warming since 1997. Look it up, its in all the papers.

Look, I'm not saying that CO2 is not a greenhouse gas, but at this point we don't know what the sensitivity of the climate is to co2, and we don't understand all of the feedback mechanisms at play. The complexity of climate is too much for anyone to grasp with certainty. Anyone who claims to understand the all the nuances of climate and be able to predict, with certainty, where climate is headed, is lying or delusional. Or both.

Why lie? Money. Power. Popularity. Politics. Get invited to all the right parties and hang out with the cool climatologists….

Wasn't this past year supposed to be when we were going to see all those severe hurricanes? Whipped up all that heat energy in the oceans? Until actually it turned out that there were fewer Hurricanes recorded in the Atlantic in 100 years. Or maybe it was this past year that the polar bears would all disappear. Now that turns out to have been another scam, cooked up to raise our antennae (and open our wallets?) to help avert the coming climate catastrophe.

Climate science is a science in evolution. Not so long ago, Time and the NYT were concerned about "the coming ice age".

I'm troubled by anthroprogenic global warmists who refuse to publish (or even consider) skeptical papers in peer reviewed journals. That's not science, that's hiding behind a wall of group think. If this theory is so sound, people should welcome debate and rigourous challenge.

Sorry, know this is a contrarian view, but there it is.


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