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Evidence Of Glaciers On Mars Suggests Recent Climate Activity

Soulskill posted more than 6 years ago | from the redhouse-effect-in-action dept.

Mars 101

Last year, the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter captured high-resolution images of the Red Planet which showed many mesas, valleys, and rock debris which appeared to be (geologically speaking) recent formations. A team of scientists from Brown University analyzed the photographs and found evidence that the terrain was carved by large glaciers much more recently than they thought possible. Climate activity on Mars was thought to have quieted over 3 billion years ago, but these glaciers would have been around within the last 10-100 million years. "The finding could have implications for the life-on-Mars argument by strengthening the case for liquid water. Ice can melt two ways: by temperature or by pressure. As currently understood, the Martian climate is dominated by sublimation, the process by which solid substances are transformed directly to vapor. But ice packs can exert such strong pressure at the base to produce liquid water, which makes the thickness of past glaciers on its surface so intriguing."

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So that's where the Glaciers have gone... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23177078)

They've all migrated to Mars.

It's an inconvenient truth...

Re:So that's where the Glaciers have gone... (-1, Flamebait)

Lars T. (470328) | more than 6 years ago | (#23177718)

as recently as 100 million years ago - Go stick your inconvenient truth where your argument works.

Re:So that's where the Glaciers have gone... (1)

Lars T. (470328) | more than 6 years ago | (#23185942)

as recently as 100 million years ago - Go stick your inconvenient truth where your argument works.
Ooh, the deniers are in full force today. Go mod me down again, suckers.

Re:So that's where the Glaciers have gone... (1)

smitty_one_each (243267) | more than 6 years ago | (#23178078)

Mars is a "cautionary tale", not an "inconvenient truth".
Don't make me flog you with a "faustian bargain".

Re:So that's where the Glaciers have gone... (1)

iNaya (1049686) | more than 6 years ago | (#23179560)

Yeah. Those damned humans and their global warming of Mars.

Re:So that's where the Glaciers have gone... (1)

smitty_one_each (243267) | more than 6 years ago | (#23186602)

The global warming of Mars is a guilt we can all so gleefully share.
I'm so happy when I view myself with disgust.

So that's where all the glaciers have gone... (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23177094)

This proves the existence of Martians...

Who else could have caused global climate change?

It's an inconvenient truth...

SLASHDOT SUX0RZ (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23177096)

_0_
\''\
'=o='
.|!|
.| |
no glacial activity detected here as of yet [goatse.ch]

Re:SLASHDOT SUX0RZ (1, Informative)

casualsax3 (875131) | more than 6 years ago | (#23177374)

Malicious link, avoid.

Re:SLASHDOT SUX0RZ (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23189962)

What tipped you off, Holmes? Was it the ASCII man holding open his ASCII anus not an inch from the link, the Anonymous Coward posting of a link to goatse.ch, or the fact that every single article has this same post, almost verbatim?

Where was Al Gore when Mars needed him? (3, Funny)

vortex2.71 (802986) | more than 6 years ago | (#23177116)

Where was Al Gore when Mars needed him? Guess it is too late to bring back the glaciers now. Damn Martian SUVs!

Re:Where was Al Gore when Mars needed him? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23177152)

Al Gore was too busy driving a hybrid taxi in New York City in the not-too distant future.

Re:Where was Al Gore when Mars needed him? (1)

smitty_one_each (243267) | more than 6 years ago | (#23178160)

Sort of a Mel Johnson [movieprop.com] in Total Recall role, without so much condescension?

Re:Where was Al Gore when Mars needed him? (2, Funny)

ppanon (16583) | more than 6 years ago | (#23178626)

Silly. Al Gore wasn't born yet.

John McCain on the other hand, could have done something but instead accepted the claims of martian corporate lobbyists that evidence for martian climate change was inconclusive.

Re:Where was Al Gore when Mars needed him? (0, Redundant)

pembo13 (770295) | more than 6 years ago | (#23177154)

lame

Re:Where was Al Gore when Mars needed him? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23177568)

Al Gore is the lame one, and the lemmings who keep drinking the Koolaid while he and his buddies get rich selling bogus 'carbon credits' and goverments all over the world drool at the prospect of taxing us even more.

Re:Where was Al Gore when Mars needed him? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23177484)

He was probably too busy riding the Mighty Moonworm.

Re:Where was Al Gore when Mars needed him? (0)

Samah (729132) | more than 6 years ago | (#23178490)

Searching for Manbearpig.

Re:Where was Al Gore when Mars needed him? (1, Funny)

IHateEverybody (75727) | more than 6 years ago | (#23179616)

Ahhh but don't you see? It was all Al's fault. The Martians listened to him and believed his Powerpoint presentation. So they cut back on green house gases until the planet froze in a perpetual ice age! And now he wants to do it to us! If we cut back on green house gasses, the glaciers will grow and polar bears will migrate south to eat our women and children. We have to stop this environmentalism crap or all we'll all be killed and turned into Bear Chow.

Re:Where was Al Gore when Mars needed him? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23180394)

Where was Al Gore when Mars needed him? Guess it is too late to bring back the glaciers now. Damn Martian SUVs!

So a change of timespan from 3 billion years to 10-100 million years disproves a theory that concerns the last ~100 years on Earth?

Re:Where was Al Gore when Mars needed him? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23183500)

Yes.

I think the glaciers might still be there.. (2, Interesting)

jlehtira (655619) | more than 6 years ago | (#23180750)

..only they're mostly covered with dust from dust storms.

Remember the patch of ice in a crater [esa.int] ? It's supposedly up to 200 meters thick. On Earth, that would be a glacier. What else could it be?

Says the Governator... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23177128)

"Get your ice to Mars!"

Re:Says the Governator... (1)

CogDissident (951207) | more than 6 years ago | (#23189216)

Before turning on the ancient device and getting thrown out of the domed habitat.

I blame the SUV's (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23177148)

Now they are affecting other planets! we all have to stop driving them, they are killing the dolphins, and now the martians, this could start an interplanetary war!

Re:I blame the SUV's (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23179536)

Sad that you got modded -1 troll. Some moderator must be having a serious sense of humour failure (maybe his dolphin just died). The parent is AMUSING (another word for FUNNY).

global warming (0, Redundant)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 6 years ago | (#23177168)

it has to be man made. the sun and natural effects couldn't possibly change the weather!

Re:global warming (-1, Flamebait)

geekoid (135745) | more than 6 years ago | (#23177318)

Stupid.

No one says that, and if you think it then you don't know what the hell your talking about, so shut the hell up.

When discussing changes in the sun, bear in mind the earth would be effected a lot more then Mars.

Re:global warming (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23177436)

you don't know what the hell your talking about
Hilarious troll!

Re:global warming (0, Flamebait)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 6 years ago | (#23177822)

wow you took that one hook line and sinker.

oh and no the earth won't be affected a lot more, if you think that you don't know what the hell your talking about because mars lacks our moving molten core giving us a magnetic field, mars also lacks our atmosphere.

I just love throwing the fact the sun's activity matches our warming trends, because it always triggers off the insecurities of the global warming crowd.

Re:global warming (1)

dryeo (100693) | more than 6 years ago | (#23178758)

I just love throwing the fact the sun's activity matches our warming trends

I keep hearing this repeated yet all studies that I have read show that the amount of solar activity in recent times has very little affect on the Earths climate.
For Mars and to a lesser degree Earth one of the main driving forces for long term climate change is variations in their orbits around the Sun.
The orbit of Mars is very eccentric, with the orbit currently varying from 1.38 AU to 1.67 AU over a Martian year. Over geological time scales this changes quite a bit and has a large affect on long term climate change.
The same thing happens with the Earth. Right now summer in the northern hemisphere happens when the Earth is the furthest from the Sun. At other times this is reversed, This variation causes long term climate change. Also in both Mars and Earths case the orbits varies in eccentrically, also causing long term climate change. For Mars this is one of the main causes of climate change.

Re:global warming (1)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 6 years ago | (#23178868)

you must not have looked hard. here's one for you

http://www.tmgnow.com/repository/solar/lassen1.html [tmgnow.com]

you might not the conclusion: "70-90 years oscillations in global mean temperature are correlated with corresponding oscillations in solar activity. Whereas the solar influence is obvious in the data from the last four centuries, signatures of human activity are not yet distinguishable in the observations. "

Do you quote Time Cube, too? (1)

spun (1352) | more than 6 years ago | (#23182510)

Holy crap that website is fucking WACKY. And by wacky I mean bug-fuck insane psuedo-science just a scosh this side of time cube. Here's the titles of some other 'scientific' papers on that site:

"What Big Bang?"
"The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse."
"Comet Caused Tsunami!"
"War in Heaven, War on Earth."
"Is Cassini a Kamikaze Deep Space Probe?"

Yeah, like I would EVER trust ANYTHING published on that site.

Re:Do you quote Time Cube, too? (1)

m.ducharme (1082683) | more than 6 years ago | (#23188836)

Here's an interesting quote from "War In Heaven, War on Earth."

"The cleansing will come from above, not from another country on the Earth as biblical scholars have believed; There is a political organization in the Heavens above us; There is evidence of contention that has gone on for sometime now. War is at hand. And it will likely come in our lifetime. Greater war than this earth has ever known."

right. to GP, check your sauce pls.

Re:global warming (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23179902)

I just love seeing idiots who seem to think they are smarter than all the scientists who study this stuff reading one piece of data that appears on the surface to corroborate their own ideas and then go off spouting a completely different conclusion all over the web than anyone else who has actually studied it..

Its YOU who has taken it hook line and sinker and are too stupid to realize you can't continuously release massive amounts of CO2 and methane into the atmosphere without changing the environment.

mods? (1)

ricree (969643) | more than 6 years ago | (#23177330)

Ok, the comment might legitimately get modded up as funny, but how in the heck can someone look at it and decide that it is insightful.

Re:mods? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23177468)

Funny comments will continue right on being modded Insightful or Informative right up until the Slashdot funny karma bug gets fixed.

That comment in particular could be modded Insightful because it is saying that here is evidence of radical climate change occurring without contribution by mankind. It is an interesting counter-example to the insane amount of global warming FUD being spewed.

Posting AC to protect my karma from the enviro-knuckleheads.

Re:mods? (3, Insightful)

regularstranger (1074000) | more than 6 years ago | (#23177786)

I don't think any climatologist says that climate change cannot occur if humans are not involved. Please correct me if I'm wrong. What climatologists say is that human actions do contribute to climate changes here on earth, and that this may involve repercussions that at least should be considered and planned for. It is not a counter-example to anything that I am aware of, and the original comment is not insightful at all, and I didn't laugh when I read it, so why it gets any mod is beyond me. Now commence calling me an enviro-knucklehead.

Re:mods? (0)

dreamchaser (49529) | more than 6 years ago | (#23177850)

The 'party line' is that humans are the PRIMARY cause of the current warming trend (which incidentally may turn into a cooling tread really, really fast). That's just plain political BS. They do not KNOW all of the factors involved, and there is plenty of evidence that our contribution is negligible compared to natural forces.

Re:mods? (0)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 6 years ago | (#23177884)

I love how they have put forth models that show the world cooling, so that no matter how the earths climate changes they can claim to be right all along.

Re:mods? (1)

regularstranger (1074000) | more than 6 years ago | (#23178010)

Can you please tell me about this group of scientists that is advancing two contradictory models so that they can be right no matter what? Or is it possible that you are lumping two separate groups together to make it seem that "they" are totally clueless.

Re:mods? (1)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 6 years ago | (#23178180)

it's very few real scientists that are the problem, it's the nut jobs that latch hold of genuine research and try blow it out of all proportions.

Re:mods? (1)

regularstranger (1074000) | more than 6 years ago | (#23177938)

What evidence is there that the current warming trend will turn into a cooling trend really fast? What is the cause of this cooling trend? You could also help me out by identifying scientific papers that give this evidence that anthropogenic contributions are negligible compared to natural forces. I really haven't followed this spat closely, and am genuinely curious. It's very easy for someone to say that something is "political BS", as that can go the other way too. Please give us something of substance. Of course, all of this is off-topic because the article is about the climate of Mars, not Earth.

Re:mods? (1)

CoopersPale (444672) | more than 6 years ago | (#23178014)

Yeah, I'm not sure that there's any evidence showing the warming trend changing to a cooling trend.
That doesn't stop people from conjuring up theories about it though!
Take this article from yesterdays Australian newspaper:

http://blogs.theaustralian.news.com.au/yoursay/index.php/theaustralian/comments/sorry_to_ruin_the_fun_but_an_ice_age_cometh/ [news.com.au]

as some of the comments there suggest, even the studies cited in the article contradict this 'new ice age' or global cooling that is apparently happening.

Of course, there's always the possibility these articles are just hoaxes.

Re:mods? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23179836)

that's right.

CO2 constituites less than 1% of atmospheric gases, by weight, volume or any other measure you may care to use.

Humans produce less than 1% of all CO2 emissions world-wide. How 1% of 1% can be termed anything BUT negligible is something that the politicians of the world are trying very hard to convince us of.

Re:mods? (1)

Loke the Dog (1054294) | more than 6 years ago | (#23181978)

I see. Well, in that case...

If I serve you a meal every day that weighs less than 1% of your body weight and have that meal concist of less than 1% arsenic, it shouldn't do any harm to you, right?

But seriously man, what kind of education do you have? You might think what you just posted was witty, but actually, it was empty rethoric that will never work on anyone with some basic understanding of the atmosphere works. No, I will not teach you why, go back to school.

Re:mods? - COMPLETELY Off Topic Rant (1)

BigBlueOx (1201587) | more than 6 years ago | (#23185196)

I will never vote for a candidate that robocalls me, period.

That was my policy too. And then they all started robocalling me! Republicans, Democrats, Ralph Fscking Nader, the Fscking Green party robocalled me! I didn't even know there was a Green Party outside of Europe!! Whiskey. Tango. Foxtrot. And it was fscking *February*! FEBRUARY!!

So now what? Vote for Ron Howard?

Re:mods? (1)

Random Destruction (866027) | more than 6 years ago | (#23177804)

That comment in particular could be modded Insightful because it is saying that here is evidence of radical climate change occurring without contribution by mankind.
Who says it was a radical change? Maybe was gradual over the course of 10 million years.

Considering our outright lack of knowledge on this event, I fail to see how it can be an effective counter-example for humans being a probable contributor to global warming.

Or did I just fall for another troll?

Re:mods? (3, Insightful)

Rei (128717) | more than 6 years ago | (#23178232)

Let's ignore that this was incredibly slow change. Let's pretend that tomorrow, we read in the news that Mars has warmed ten degrees in the last twenty years. Let's pretend that this isn't made less relevant by the fact that mars has an atmosphere with a small fraction of a percent as much thermal inertia as ours, and there's no even bigger oceanic thermal inertial source (the ocean) like we have on Earth. Let's pretend all of this was true for the sake of argument.

It Would Still Be Irrelevant As To The Causes Of Climate Change On Earth.

We have satellites, telescopes, and sensors monitoring every last thing you could possibly imagine about the sun. Unless the sun has some sort of magical powers, if the sun is changing in some way or another, *we'd know about it*. We don't need "planetary proxies" to tell us if the sun is getting brighter or whatnot; we have the hard data *right here*.

Oh, and for the idiots who just assume that the IPCC scientists forgot to consider the sun: there are about 50 peer reviewed papers [ucar.edu] summed up in the technical report (pretty much every recent peer-reviewed paper on the subject) related to the sun, changes in the sun, historical changes in the sun, how the various forms of solar radiation interact with earth processes, and so on. Now, how many of them have *you* read that lets you feel qualified to hold a contrary view?

Re:mods? (2, Interesting)

funwithBSD (245349) | more than 6 years ago | (#23179266)

WE don't know the Sun is getting hotter? Is that you and your little mouse?

Maybe he can read this to you really slowly:

http://www.space.com/scienceastronomy/sun_output_030320.html

In what could be the simplest explanation for one component of global warming, a new study shows the Sun's radiation has increased by .05 percent per decade since the late 1970s.

The increase would only be significant to Earth's climate if it has been going on for a century or more, said study leader Richard Willson, a Columbia University researcher also affiliated with NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies.

The Sun's increasing output has only been monitored with precision since satellite technology allowed necessary observations. Willson is not sure if the trend extends further back in time, but other studies suggest it does.

"This trend is important because, if sustained over many decades, it could cause significant climate change," Willson said.
Oh right... inconvenient truth.

And might I remind you, we have better records of the Mars Ice Caps, going back to Galileo, on what the caps used to look like. They are shrinking.

Without human intervention.

Re:mods? (1)

rpj1288 (698823) | more than 6 years ago | (#23179556)

I'll point out to you that you linked to a popular source written about one single peer reviewed source, while the GP linked to a peer reviewed report about many other peer reviewed papers that contradict your study.

Re:mods? (1)

spun (1352) | more than 6 years ago | (#23182632)

Look, buddy, don't you know how science works? First you pick a conclusion you like. Then you find evidence to support your conclusion. Then you cast aspersions on the motives of anyone who contradicts your conclusion. Then you bitch on teh intarwebs about how scientists are all part of a vast conspiracy to keep you down because your ideas are too dangerous.

Re:mods? (1)

d34thm0nk3y (653414) | more than 6 years ago | (#23187554)

From your linked article:Confounding efforts to determine the Sun's role is the fact that its energy output waxes and wanes every 11 years. This solar cycle, as it is called, reached maximum in the middle of 2000 and achieved a second peak in 2002. It is now ramping down toward a solar minimum that will arrive in about three years.

posted: 02:30 pm ET 20 March 2003


Nice cherry picking, we are in the middle of the minimum right now.

Re:mods? (1)

d34thm0nk3y (653414) | more than 6 years ago | (#23187680)

Here is a graph of the total solar irradiance data if anyone cares. I don't even see the increase the article references. link [noaa.gov]

Re:mods? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23189104)

How convenient: one link you provided is supposed to completely and totally remove relevance of the other 50 peer-reviewed publications?


Besides, you keep on hitting the strawman ("hey, so no warming can happen without humans? here, take this!"): no one is claiming climate could not change due to humans. What is being said is that according to the best understanding, overall it seems very likely that humankind's actions are causing significant part of observed warming up.

Re:mods? (1)

Hellsbells (231588) | more than 6 years ago | (#23193156)

If this is indeed true then we should probably be:

1) Doing as much as we can to reduce human caused global warming to buy us as much time on earth as possible.

2) Start working out ways to get the population off earth to another planet as soon as possible.

Re:mods? (1)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 6 years ago | (#23186048)

Unless the sun has some sort of magical powers, if the sun is changing in some way or another, *we'd know about it*.

Well, that is the issue. It is possible for other properties to NOT be known to us that are causing this. But in the end, the real issue is that temps are climbing and we DO have the ability to change it via controlling our output. I mean, if somebody is shooting at you, do you really have to know whether it is an old style ball or a dum-dum before you decide to get out of the way? I always am amazed that ppl want to debate this, when it is in the west advantage to get off importing oil NOW and move ahead with energy independence. Had America (and the rest of EU) moved to nukes in the same fashion that France had, we would not be having this debate about climate change. Most of the west would simply insist on carbon taxes.

Re:global warming (1)

naoursla (99850) | more than 6 years ago | (#23177338)

You do realize this is talking about climate change that happened 10-100 million years ago? It could have been a very slow change over a million years. It could have been due to solar activity and Earth experienced the same thing.

Or maybe an asteroid hit mars, the resulting dust cloud blocked the sun and caused global cooling to the extent that glaciers were able to form (from what I don't know).

Using a trend that may have happened over a million years to invalidate theories about the cause of a trend occuring over decades is just plain dumb.

Not that I am making an argument for man-made global warming. It is just that this isn't the argument to use and attempting to use it causes you to lose credibility so that your future arguments are more likely to be ignored.

Mars does have manmade stuff (1)

EmbeddedJanitor (597831) | more than 6 years ago | (#23177354)

If they land anything more on mars it will be gridlock.

But your main point is valid. Solar radiation is only one of the earth's heat sources. Internal radioactive decay contributes a lot, so does gravitational/tidal friction and the magnetic dynamo effects on the iron core.

Re:Mars does have manmade stuff (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23179872)

Solar radiation is only one of the earth's heat sources. Internal radioactive decay contributes a lot, so does gravitational/tidal friction and the magnetic dynamo effects on the iron core.
What UTTER rubbish. Get a clue and more importantly, get some proof of your ridiculous claims.

Oh, obviously. (1)

Valdrax (32670) | more than 6 years ago | (#23177372)

I mean, the presence of glaciers on Mars 10-100 million years ago clearly shows that mankind has nothing to do with the sharp, upward spike in temperatures since the widespread adoption of fossil fuel power.

Clearly, the same forces that eliminated glaciers 10-100 million years ago are behind the changes of the past 150 years.

Re:global warming (3, Funny)

BiggerIsBetter (682164) | more than 6 years ago | (#23177810)

It's okay. When it gets too bad we'll just migrate to another planet, like we did last time...

Re:global warming (2, Funny)

Lars T. (470328) | more than 6 years ago | (#23177904)

it has to be man made. the sun and natural effects couldn't possibly change the weather!
Nope, it was Martian made, and they died out 100 million years ago because of it. Repent, sinners, for you repeat the sins of GOD's first try!

Re:global warming (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23185314)

Some people think the dinosaurs were Gods first try.

And the earth was (it's actually more accurately translated "became") without form and void.

Re:global warming (1, Flamebait)

Monsuco (998964) | more than 6 years ago | (#23178188)

it has to be man made. the sun and natural effects couldn't possibly change the weather!
How dare you question the authority of Al Gore! Remember, he gave us the internet, and he can take it away so don't anger him :)

next Mars probe lands on May 25, 2008 (4, Informative)

peter303 (12292) | more than 6 years ago | (#23177172)

Phoenix [arizona.edu] lands at the Martian arctic circle to poke around the icy soils there. It has a back-hoe arm and sophisticated chemical analyzers, but no wheels. It will last until the end of the year until the pole region enters the long winter night.

Re:next Mars probe lands on May 25, 2008 (3, Funny)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 6 years ago | (#23177558)

It has a back-hoe arm


How much do you want to bet that within the first week it will cut a fiber-optic line and cut part of the Martian backbone?

Re:next Mars probe lands on May 25, 2008 (2, Interesting)

boris111 (837756) | more than 6 years ago | (#23177694)

I wondered about that. It's intending to dig in icy areas right? How do they know it's won't be too icy as in they won't be able to get the hoe in the ground

Re:next Mars probe lands on May 25, 2008 (4, Informative)

CraftyJack (1031736) | more than 6 years ago | (#23178258)

Ice is the goal. There's no such thing as "too icy" here. The scoop has a rasp on the end of it that will be used to grind some of the icy soil into the scoop. The robotic arm will then dump those ice shavings into the analysis instruments (TEGA and MECA).

Re:next Mars probe lands on May 25, 2008 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23179988)

The scoop has a rasp on the end of it that will be used to grind some of the icy soil into the scoop.
The NASA is very displeased by you disclosure of information on their new MMORPG.

Trolls are too fast (-1, Redundant)

shma (863063) | more than 6 years ago | (#23177314)

There are already a bunch of wise-ass posts out there saying SUVs must have caused the Martian climate change.

Let me make the obvious point that this news is in no way an argument against anthropogenic climate change, not in the least because they're talking about events that are MILLIONS OF YEARS OLD.

Re:Trolls are too fast (2, Insightful)

geekoid (135745) | more than 6 years ago | (#23177324)

Then they might have to think and actually understand climate change! It's much easier to be ignorant and ridicule then it is to think.

Re:Trolls are too fast (4, Funny)

Valdrax (32670) | more than 6 years ago | (#23177380)

Let me make the obvious point that this news is in no way an argument against anthropogenic climate change, not in the least because they're talking about events that are MILLIONS OF YEARS OLD.
Bull. Everyone smart enough to know that climate change isn't caused by mankind knows that the universe isn't more than a few thousand years old.

Re:Trolls are too fast (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23177410)

then what the hell was God's lazy ass doing BEFORE he decided to make the ultimate ant farm?

Re:Trolls are too fast (1)

Poppa (95105) | more than 6 years ago | (#23177636)

We better do something quick because the temperature hasn't increased on Earth in 10 years. Maybe we are now going into an ice age and need to increase our CO2 production!

And then there is that inconvenient global warming occurring on Mars ...

Stop babbling talking points and look at the data. (2, Insightful)

Valdrax (32670) | more than 6 years ago | (#23179152)

We better do something quick because the temperature hasn't increased on Earth in 10 years.
You're clearly wrong. It takes a real lack of understanding of statistics to think that you can't have a cold year or two and still have an overall warming trend. This is what happens when you confuse short-term weather trends for long term climate shifts.

Please direct your attention to the record of global temperatures from 1880-2007. [earth-policy.org]

Let's take a look at 1998 & 1999. 1998 was the third warmest year on record, with an average global temperature of 14.72 C. The following year dropped 0.26 C, and it took until 2005 to top that temperature at 14.76 C, with last year being 14.73 C.

OH NOES! GLOBAL WARMING IS TEH LIE!
 
...Right? Well, no. It you look at the graph on the linked page, you'll see that there's *definite* upwards trend in spite of strong variability from year to year. If you take a 5 year average, centered on each year, you get the following trend:

1995 - 14.35
1996 - 14.46 (+.11)
1997 - 14.49 (+.03)
1998 - 14.48 (-.01)
1999 - 14.52 (+.04)
2000 - 14.57 (+.05)
2001 - 14.56 (-.01)
2002 - 14.59 (+.03)
2003 - 14.66 (+.07)
2004 - 14.68 (+.02)
2005 - 14.68 (+.00)

Do you see the clear, upwards trend once statistical noise is removed now?

P.S.: What inconvenient global warming on Mars?
Mars temperatures explained. [realclimate.org]
Also, please explain what common source could be warming Mars and Earth during the past few years when Total Solar Irradiance was on the decline from 2000-2005.

Re:Stop babbling talking points and look at the da (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23179688)

"Please direct your attention to the record of global temperatures from 1880-2007. [earth-policy.org]"

127 years of climate data lets us predict so much, doesn't it? I like the models better where we just decide to use roughly 1000 years of data and the models show that CO2 has virtually no impact whatsoever on global climate, and today's current trend is normal.

But those models don't support global warming, so lets just keep this a secret, shall we?

Re:Stop babbling talking points and look at the da (1)

Namarrgon (105036) | more than 6 years ago | (#23180178)

[citation needed]

Re:Stop babbling talking points and look at the da (1)

Valdrax (32670) | more than 6 years ago | (#23184676)

127 years of climate data lets us predict so much, doesn't it? I like the models better where we just decide to use roughly 1000 years of data and the models show that CO2 has virtually no impact whatsoever on global climate, and today's current trend is normal.

But those models don't support global warming, so lets just keep this a secret, shall we?
Oh, sure. You'll "keep them a secret" because that might mean opening up your bogus data to criticism (assuming it actually exists).

Re:Stop babbling talking points and look at the da (1)

et764 (837202) | more than 6 years ago | (#23192012)

The data listed in your post reminded me of when I did a project on Brownian Motion in my Fractals class a few years ago. A good example is this image [wikipedia.org] .

One of the interesting things of a curve like that one is that you can view it on any scale, and it will never smooth out. If you look at a window of size 1/128, you might see a clear downward trend, but if you look at a larger window over the same point of size 1/64, you might realize that was just a small blip on an overall upward trend, and on and on. In the graph I linked, at the end you are at the same place you started, but it would be hard to predict that by looking at a small or even a fairly large subset of the data.

Even if we were on a general warming trend with small dips on the way since 1995, that trend could itself be a small upward blip when viewed on the scale of 100 or 1000 years. That said, I've only looked at the global temperature record enough to say "hmmm... that certainly looks like it could be a subset of a Brownian Motion curve." I'm sure you've studied the issue much more than I and are much better qualified to argue whether global warming is a problem.

Re:Stop babbling talking points and look at the da (1)

Valdrax (32670) | more than 6 years ago | (#23192836)

Even if we were on a general warming trend with small dips on the way since 1995, that trend could itself be a small upward blip when viewed on the scale of 100 or 1000 years. That said, I've only looked at the global temperature record enough to say "hmmm... that certainly looks like it could be a subset of a Brownian Motion curve." I'm sure you've studied the issue much more than I and are much better qualified to argue whether global warming is a problem.
Well, actually the bit about Brownian Motion Fractals was kind of fascinating.

Your point about a "small upward blip" isn't without merit. If you extend the graph out far enough [globalwarmingart.com] you will see that global temperatures have been on the overall decline ever since the Eocene, roughly 49 million years ago.

Of course, these changes happened over much longer time scale, with a much smaller rate of change than what's happening today. For a scale much more reasonable to looking at human influences, check out this graph. [globalwarmingart.com] That is a scale that shows how much temperatures have shifted around within our local frame of reference. You'll note the regular up and down cycles of ice ages within this time period before a sudden upwards shift that shows something unusual is occurring. Currently our atmospheric CO2 levels are above those found in any ice cores to date -- 30% higher than anything found in the past 650,000 years. I think that's a little outside the local curve.

Idiot. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23179798)

Creationists and those who disbelieve man-made climate change are at opposite ends of the intelligence spectrum.

How the 1% of a gas that humans produce of a gas that constitutes less than 1% of the atmoshere could be driving "global-bullshit-warming" is beneath intelligent thought, but then this IS /.

Re:Idiot. (1)

blueg3 (192743) | more than 6 years ago | (#23181938)

No, people who reject anthropogenic climate change just think they're a lot smarter.

If you understood equilibrium systems, you wouldn't have asked how a tiny change in the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere can cause significant climate change.

Actually, not understanding this kind of system is often the same problem creationists have -- it's the "how could complex life evolve via a random process" question.

They're the same, really. (2, Insightful)

Valdrax (32670) | more than 6 years ago | (#23184018)

Creationists and those who disbelieve man-made climate change are at opposite ends of the intelligence spectrum.
I don't see the difference.
  • Both require an out and out dismissal of global scientific consensus by experts in the field in favor of widely discredited fringe theory largely promoted by outsiders.
  • Both require an inability to see how small changes can have large effects over time.
  • Both ultimately dismiss the physical, geological record as unreliable.
  • Both consider small anomalies to be more important than the overwhelmingly larger data set and then cling to them as proof of their alternative views even after the larger scientific community figures out how to explain them.
  • Both frequently blame scientific consensus on conspiracy, bias, and groupthink instead of being willing to credit experts for actually knowing the material better than them, all while ignoring their own self-blinding bias and groupthink.

So, outside of the (American) political and religious ties between the two factions, there's quite a lot of similarity in mindset that goes behind both sets of beliefs which ultimately boils down to a distrust of science in favor of a gut-held, intuitive belief.

How the 1% of a gas that humans produce of a gas that constitutes less than 1% of the atmoshere could be driving "global-bullshit-warming" is beneath intelligent thought, but then this IS /.
Why is that so hard to believe? I mean, ozone is only 2-8 ppm and yet without it, surface UV-B levels would be about 350 billion times what they are, and UV-C is almost completely blocked. All this is done by a layer of gas which is dwarfed in volume by CO2 (384 ppm currently, a 30% increase over preindustrial levels).

So if ozone can soak up this much UV-B and UV-C, why can't carbon dioxide and methane soak up some infrared? Again, not only have you ignored the real numbers (by saying 1% of 1%), but you've ignored evidence to the contrary that a very small concentration of gas can have a large effect on a particular spectrum of light because it "seems" illogical to your gut instinct. ...A lot like a creationist feels about evolution.

Did anyone else read it as.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23177320)

"Recent Crime Activity" ?

Re:Did anyone else read it as.. (1)

maglor_83 (856254) | more than 6 years ago | (#23179184)

No.

Solar forcing or new climate model required? (2, Informative)

SockPuppet_9_5 (645235) | more than 6 years ago | (#23177340)

This should be one of those "back to the drawing board" moments for Mars climatology. How can you explain a change ice remaining so far south and then disappearing in the last 500 million years? A "Milankovitch styled wobble" might be one explanation, or perhaps good old fashioned solar forcing. But Earth is closer and would be subject to the same flux in any solar forcing.

Minor correction (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 6 years ago | (#23177464)

"But Earth is closer and would be subject to the same flux in any solar forcing."

But Earth is closer and would be subject to a more intense flux in any solar forcing.

Inverse Square law, and all that.

Re:Minor correction (1)

SockPuppet_9_5 (645235) | more than 6 years ago | (#23178284)

I was thinking in multiples of the whole, but of course.

What's the difference?

A factor of 8?

Re:Solar forcing or new climate model required? (1)

dryeo (100693) | more than 6 years ago | (#23178852)

The orbit of Mars is very eccentric and Milankovitch wobbles much more pronounced then Earths. Quite a likely candidate.
Here's a quick overview of Martian seasons, http://pweb.jps.net/~gangale3/bauregger/seasons.html [jps.net] note how the seasons are not equal in length due to orbital eccentrics.

Re:Solar forcing or new climate model required? (1)

SockPuppet_9_5 (645235) | more than 6 years ago | (#23179562)

Okay, agreed on the probability of the varying obliquity of the planet over time (ala Milankovitch styled wobbles for Mars) Referencing the discussion and diagrams on Page 3 & 4 of the Google preview of Michael Carr's book [google.com] , even though there's no real way to project backward past 10Mya (according to the book). I'll assume that there would be significant wobbles before that, just that we can't really predict the nature of them.

this is news? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23177604)

who didn't expect this? oh, that's right, the shitballs on slashdot who like to fucking lie.

Did you see the pictures? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23178116)

Liquid water was already proven to exist on mars. Photographic evidence showed flows lines that did not exist in 1 photograph existing in another. Can we please put this to rest once and for all? There is water on mars, and yes its in liquid form, and yes, somehow it surfaces and flows without evaporating right away.

Re:Did you see the pictures? (3, Informative)

JetJaguar (1539) | more than 6 years ago | (#23179416)

Umm... No. The current presence of liquid water has not been confirmed. The best evidence that we've found so far is actually not inconsistent with a dry flow down a steep hill. The flows could still be water, and that can't be ruled out. However, it has not been confirmed.

The fact is, all of us really want there to be liquid water on Mars, it will be a major break through if and when it happens. However, no matter how tantalizing the images are, they still don't confirm the presence of water....yet.

Mesa? (1)

RobDollar (1137885) | more than 6 years ago | (#23178152)

It wasn't a black Mesa by any chance was it? Argh srry I made myself feel a bit ill writing that.

Rock and Roll (1)

TysonPeppler (1256212) | more than 6 years ago | (#23178372)

Ice Ice Baby...

Hammertime! = No more glaciers.

And while we're here. Could a glacier exist on mars with its little gravity and no atmosphere? Obviously not; if there aren't any.

So what conditions have changed in the last 10-100 million years? The gravity shouldn't have changed - no large scale reduction in mass there. Probably no magnetic field due to no spinning around an iron core - this means an atmosphere that doesn't get blasted away by any sort of solar flare would be nigh impossible to keep up. There is next to zero atmospheric pressure on the surface (obviously) and the whole place is "frozen" due to extreme cold.

If anything, these structures/geological features seemingly formed by glaciers would have been formed more probably by a "glacial" type object but not made out of water. A different species of rock formation (for example a solid piece of granite in a tray of sand -- not this extreme) "floating" over millions of years across the surface - harder and more solid than surrounding soils and possibly pushed to surface by a rotational force. You'd see the remains on the surface as small rocks/boulders strewn over hundreds of kilometers.

But I'm getting fanciful; and this is all pure conjecture.

Break it down!

Meteor (1)

Tablizer (95088) | more than 6 years ago | (#23179068)

An occasional large meteor may perhaps re-heat the surface, creating temporary but heavy flows of brine.

Maybe some new words are needed... (1)

stoofa (524247) | more than 6 years ago | (#23180656)

Okay, so I don't want to add my voice to the trollship, but the word 'recent' is a little bit ambiguous here. Whenever history of planets is discussed words like 'recent' and 'new' get overstretched.

would it not be clearer if we added a prefix to show exactly how recent an event was?

so you would have megarecent, gigarecent, terrarecent...

Rainbow Mars by Niven (1)

speculatrix (678524) | more than 6 years ago | (#23181858)

according to Larry Niven's Rainbow Mars [amazon.co.uk] , it's Yggdrasil which caused Mars to die.

Joking aside, an excellent book.
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