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Global Warming Has Made the North Greener

timothy posted about a year and a half ago | from the but-we-wanted-to-expand-the-deep-freeze dept.

NASA 398

New submitter ceview writes "NASA has released its latest green data showing a creeping of green towards the northern hemisphere. From the article: 'Results show temperature and vegetation growth at northern latitudes now resemble those found 4 degrees to 6 degrees of latitude farther south as recently as 1982.'"

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398 comments

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Final nail? (2, Insightful)

Joce640k (829181) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136057)

Is there any space left for more nails in this coffin? Pretty soon there'll be more nails than wood.

Re:Final nail? (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136115)

What coffin exactly? There are multiple coffins around that some people like to conflate together.

Another thing is that people who believed the earth is warming based on previous weaker evidence are not in any way better or more scientific than those more skeptical who required further evidence.

Re:Final nail? (3, Insightful)

KeensMustard (655606) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136477)

Another thing is that people who believed the earth is warming based on previous weaker evidence are not in any way better or more scientific than those more skeptical who required further evidence.

Actually no, that's not a thing. "Who is better" was never a thing. CO2 doesn't care what you believe about it. You are never actually going to be able to negotiate with it.

Re:Final nail? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136511)

All data collection involves sources of uncertainty both known and unknown, therefore all interpretation of that data requires making estimations and assumptions that may be more or less acceptable to different people.

"CO2 doesn't care what I believe about it" is irrelevant, the subjectivity occurs at a level higher than the behavior of the actual thing being measured. This is one more strawman that just confuses the discussion and is not a contribution to the advancement of science.

Re:Final nail? (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136591)

What the Hell are you arguing, exactly? That maybe Global Warming isn't happening? I'd like to hear that argument, that the observations, namely warming global temperatures and increased global CO2, is not actually proof of Global Warming.

Re:Final nail? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136687)

I'm arguing that the evidence that warming was occurring was not that strong until the late 1990s. It has leveled off since then but looking back at the last 100 yrs of records it looks like we should expect a couple decades of warming followed by a few of stability.

The attitude I observe on slashdot is that it was wrong to ever be skeptical of this trend. This is unscientific.

Now it is commonly accepted that the earth has warmed but the argument has moved towards whether or not this trend will continue which involves many more assumptions than just whether or not the data on warming is reliable. This is the normal progression of science, it is not a problem.

Re:Final nail? (3, Funny)

Lumpy (12016) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136367)

I'm one of those that owns a lot of property in the north. That means in 100 years my grandkids will be sitting on a epic goldmine of realestate that all the people fleeing the new desert in the south will want to live. $1,000,000 an acre Bidding starts on the next heat wave.

Re:Final nail? (1, Redundant)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136537)

I'm one of those that owns a lot of property in the north... $1,000,000 an acre Bidding starts on the next heat wave.

I hope you're also one of those that owns a lot of guns.

Re:Final nail? (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136593)

Watch out for those termites and beetles though. Cold winters have been a barrier for pests in the forests of the North previously and those nice wooden mansions and ski cabins are at risk in the future, along with the rest of the forest.

excellent (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136061)

what's not to like then?

America is truly God's chosen country :P

Re:excellent (4, Funny)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136083)

what's not to like then?

America is truly God's chosen country :P

The trouble is, if 'north' moves any further north, we are going to have to go and liberate Snow Mexico...

Re:excellent (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136145)

Actually, looks like Greenland would then be God's chosen country. As well as the Arctic. Then there can be an exodus to Canada, while in Russia, Siberia and the Russian Arctic will start getting populated. In the meantime, North Africa, Middle East, India and South East Asia can all go underwater. Only thing I'm wondering - will there be vegetation in the Antarctic as well? If there is, then just move the Indian and South East Asian populations there, and let the home continents take a bath. As for water levels rising in Arabia and North Africa, that would flood the desert, which would be good, since it can be a first step towards transforming their landscape.

It takes thousands of years to get soil. (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136209)

So when you emigrate to Canada because your land is now a desert, make sure to drag along a few billion tons of topsoil with you.

Re:It takes thousands of years to get soil. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136667)

It takes thousands of years to get soil.

Not so. Have you never witnessed the beauty of land in flux? Behold... the salt marsh! [wikipedia.org]

Re:excellent (2, Insightful)

someone1234 (830754) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136213)

Are you aware, that most of the population of the USA lives on the shore?
Living in a half submerged skyscraper might be novel, but kinda unhealthy.

Re:excellent (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136265)

It is not a digital switch. When the doorstep gets an inch of water in the wrong time of the month then it is a good idea to move. The person living one feet higher up can afford to wait until next month.

Re:excellent (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136633)

Except that neighbour is the owner of the local shop, and now he has fewer customers and goes bankrupt and now has to move.

Except that both of you have now moved and are unable to sell your old home to pay for the new one.

So I guess both of you are bankrupt.

PS for the owner of all that land, nobody can afford to pay what he demands for it, so it won't be sold. So in what way is that land worth that money if he can't sell it for that amount?

Re:excellent (4, Funny)

coinreturn (617535) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136657)

Are you aware, that most of the population of the USA lives on the shore? Living in a half submerged skyscraper might be novel, but kinda unhealthy.

Especially if you're in the bottom half.

Re:excellent (1)

WindBourne (631190) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136253)

Russia wiil have its hand full with China deciding to invade. The reason is that with the warming, according to forecasts, that China's future rainfall will be cut by more than 1/10, possibly 1/5.

Re:excellent (-1, Flamebait)

Lumpy (12016) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136383)

I suggest you take geography. the USA has a lot of "north" that is sparsely populated because most people are wussies and cant handle 18-22 feet of snow on the ground for the typical winter. I STILL have 4 feet in my front yard and it's been 45 and raining for 7 days.

Re:excellent (1)

GigaplexNZ (1233886) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136493)

...most people are wussies and cant handle 18-22 feet of snow on the ground for the typical winter.

That's enough to bury a house. How would you get out the front door?

Re:excellent (2)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136549)

That's enough to bury a house. How would you get out the front door?

You don't. It's why god invented booze.

Re:excellent (1)

IndustrialComplex (975015) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136665)

18-22' of snow? Good for you Paul, unfortunately the rest of us don't have giant blue oxen to help us dig out.

Re:excellent (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136651)

Actually, looks like Greenland would then be God's chosen country.

Nope. Mexico, Central and northern South America and Africa becomes, as you say, God's chosen country.

Here's how it works in an overly simplistic nutshell: Global Warming predicts catastrophic ice melt. This causes rising sea levels, sure, but more importantly, it is a massive influx of fresh water into the Atlantic Ocean, disrupting the thermocline circulation [wikipedia.org] , and ultimately, the Gulf Stream, and every other ocean current. The result of Global Warming is that the northern latitudes are no longer warmed by essential ocean currents. Due to Global Warming we can expect the North Atlantic, ironically, to freeze rapidly (well within a human lifetime, though not a Day After Tomorrow scenario)... all of N. Europe, most of N. America will be under ice... just like during the last glacial period [wikipedia.org] that ended only 10K years ago.

Re:excellent (0)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136689)

The arctic is a continent. Under all that snow and ice you do eventually come to dirt. Heat it up enough, and you can get vegetation. The antarctic is quite different: It's just ice. Beneath the ice, water. Heat it up and you get a new ocean.

Rising oceans isn't going to make any new land farmable - that's salt water, remember. Nothing grows there except seaweed. But higher temperatures do mean more evaporation, which in turn means more precipitation - so there may well be increased rainfall, which could render some arid regions more useful.

More green? (3, Funny)

mwvdlee (775178) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136077)

So the world is becoming more green due to global warming?
I'm confused, is this good or bad?

Re:More green? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136161)

If it keeps going on like this, the oceans will overflow from the ice in the north and south melting and your green will wither from the heat.

Re:More green? (5, Informative)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136263)

90% of ocean rise will be thermal expansion, not melt, FWIW.

And it won't do anything like kill stuff -- it will increase plant cover as large land masses become better able to support plant life. The increased CO2 actually helps in this aspect. We know this from much warmer periods in the past.

Re: More green? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136339)

H2O shrinks when it goes from frozen to liquid. Thermal contraction.

Re: More green? (4, Insightful)

Rockoon (1252108) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136377)

H2O shrinks when it goes from frozen to liquid. Thermal contraction.

Which has nothing to do with anything...

The volume of water displaced by floating ice is exactly the volume of water the ice will fill when melted.

The ice on land currently doesnt effect sea level, so here too the contraction when H2O goes from solid to liquid is meaningless.

The thermal expansion being discussed is that of liquid water as it warms.

You are proof that a little bit of knowledge is a terrible thing. You know that water contracts when it goes from solid to liquid, but you clearly have no idea what it means in practice.

Re:More green? (0)

Spy Handler (822350) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136171)

I'd be curious to see where the green belt lay during the Medieval warming period. Of course its existence has been discredited now, and tales of dairy farms and Viking settlements in Greenland have been dismissed as an anecdotal myth and stricken from Wikipedia. But it would be interesting to see nonetheless (on a hypothetical basis, of course).

On the other hand, during the Little Ice Age (not so long ago, only a few hundred years) you had towns in the middle of continental Europe sending out their priests to exorcise the ice demons in an attempt to stop the encroaching glaciers threatening to engulf their settlements. One wonders where the green belt was then. But I suppose the existence of the little ice age will be discredited soon as well.

Re:More green? (4, Informative)

BasilBrush (643681) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136189)

I'd be curious to see where the green belt lay during the Medieval warming period. Of course its existence has been discredited now, and tales of dairy farms and Viking settlements in Greenland have been dismissed as an anecdotal myth and stricken from Wikipedia.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Medieval_Warming_Period [wikipedia.org]
8 mentions of Greenland, including a temperature chart, and a photo of a viking settlement. Conspiracy theorists operate entirely independently of the facts.

Re:More green? (1)

balsy2001 (941953) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136283)

A book called COLLAPSE by Jared Diamond goes into some good detail about the viking settlements and the conditions that allowed their society to survive and then collapse. The rest of the book discusses other societies that collapse and the reasons. Interesting read if you like the subject. His other book (Guns Germs and Steel) is also very good.

Re:More green? (2, Interesting)

Rockoon (1252108) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136463)

I love how that wikipedia article begins...

Essentially.. "The medieval warm period was local to the north atlantic, except for all the other warm periods in the world that coincidentally were at the same time."

Certain climate researchers quietly campaigned to edit history itself, emailing colleagues (such as David Deming, University of Oklahoma) asking them to help get rid of the medieval warm period ("We have to get rid of the Medieval Warm Period.") Deming even testified before congress about the effort.

Global warming may be a problem or it may not be. One problem is for certain, and that certain climate "researchers" are playing politics rather than science.

Re:More green? (1, Interesting)

dreamchaser (49529) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136607)

I love how that wikipedia article begins...

Essentially.. "The medieval warm period was local to the north atlantic, except for all the other warm periods in the world that coincidentally were at the same time."

Certain climate researchers quietly campaigned to edit history itself, emailing colleagues (such as David Deming, University of Oklahoma) asking them to help get rid of the medieval warm period ("We have to get rid of the Medieval Warm Period.") Deming even testified before congress about the effort.

Global warming may be a problem or it may not be. One problem is for certain, and that certain climate "researchers" are playing politics rather than science.

Look at how much grant money is given out these days to GW research. There's the reason why. As always, follow the money and it will usually lead you to the answer.

Re:More green? (2, Insightful)

Sique (173459) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136631)

Look at how much grant money is given out these days to GW research. There's the reason why. As always, follow the money and it will usually lead you to the answer.

Not much at all, compared to the money that is given out for instance for oil exploration and new extraction technologies. So follow the money.

Re:More green? (5, Interesting)

silentcoder (1241496) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136225)

>and tales of dairy farms and Viking settlements in Greenland have been dismissed as an anecdotal myth and stricken from Wikipedia

It wasn't myth, it was MARKETING. The claim that Greenland was green, indeed the very name, came from a Viking chief called Eric The Red - who was spreading a massive scam to lure Vikings to settle in the land he had taken over.
It was, basically, a good old fashioned property scam. Turns out the fixer-upper was a lot more fixer than upper, in fact thousands of Vikings died in the first few years - mostly from starvation and frostbite.

Re:More green? (4, Informative)

Sique (173459) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136285)

You can read the icelandic sagas, and in the Grnlendinga saga (Bjarni Herjolfsson's voyage), they explicitely describe Greenland to be covered with even larger glaciers than Iceland.

Re:More green? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136609)

Property is still a scam to this day.

Re:More green? (3, Interesting)

Lumpy (12016) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136405)

There were viking settlements in Canada and the USA. as far south as Ohio.

Re:More green? (2)

Intrepid imaginaut (1970940) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136217)

It's kind of a tricky one. Large swathes of coastal areas will be inundated. This is a problem because that's where most of the people live, and it will be hugely disruptive to move them elsewhere. Europe, northern India, most of the southern US, Brazil and large areas of South America would be swamped if the ice caps melted. Even in higher areas you can expect major trouble as dry hot areas spread and extreme weather becomes more common.

However a lot of Siberia and Canada would become very habitable, and the higher temperatures, precipitation and carbon dioxide levels should in theory lead to an increase in the overall size and diversity of the biosphere, more rainforests basically, as long as we don't cut them all down again.

Also on a personal note, I would miss snow.

Re:More green? (2)

Lumpy (12016) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136413)

"However a lot of Siberia and Canada would become very habitable, "

You have never been in northern canada in the summer. The black flies alone will keep it from being habitable.

Re:More green? (5, Insightful)

BasilBrush (643681) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136231)

So the world is becoming more green due to global warming?

The article doesn't say anything about the world becoming more green. Only that the north, above the 45th parallel is. That's Canada, Northern Europe, Russia and up to the arctic. It doesn't say anything about the balance between that and desertification nearer the equator.

It does fit with other studies and models to help confirm the reality of global warming though.

Re:More green? (3, Informative)

rve (4436) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136415)

Only that the north, above the 45th parallel is. That's Canada, Northern Europe, Russia and up to the arctic.

When you say Northern Europe, you really mean nearly all of Europe except for parts of Spain, Italy and the Balkans.

Re:More green? (2, Insightful)

Sique (173459) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136239)

It's not the world, which becomes greener, it's the North. If at the same time the equator regions become aride, coastal areas sink under the sea and deserts are growing, then we get a huge migration from the equator to the northern regions. It's up to you to decide if that's good.

Re:More green? (0)

girlintraining (1395911) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136321)

So the world is becoming more green due to global warming?

Part of the world, traditionally far more white, is becoming green. You'd know that if you'd read the article.

I'm confused, is this good or bad?

That depends entirely on where you live. If you're in an area that's already too warm for comfort... it's bad. If you live in an area that's an arctic wasteland however, you can look forward to rising property values, more temperate winters, and the occasional need to hop up on the roof and pick off refugees with your gatling gun as they seek shelter from the long tracts of desert that is slowly swallowing our largest cities. Okay, well, maybe not you, but plan ahead, and your great grandchildren will be.

Re:More green? (1)

gmuslera (3436) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136461)

Should accelerate the process. Less reflected sunlight means even more incoming heat. Earth been such this kind of stages in the past, but previous times didnt had the continuous input of industrial heat sources and contamination that we have now, nor we were so tied to so much specific coastal places. And if well we should be able to adapt a gradual process taking decades, a very fast process could eventually kill millons (at least is what Hollywood enjoys showing us).

Re:More green? (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136553)

So the world is becoming more green due to global warming?

I realize you're joking, but it doesn't mean the world is becoming more green, it means the livable part is moving North.

Remember, there's less land near the top of a globe than at the middle.

I've played this game! (3, Interesting)

girlintraining (1395911) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136081)

I've played Sim Earth. I know what happens with global warming... the equator becomes a giant desert, but the temperate regions all become tropical. If you ask me, now's the time to buy land farther north. It's only going to go up in value as natural resources like water become scarce in heavily populated areas. In the not too distant future, water pipelines will be more valued than oil.

Re:I've played this game! (0)

unixisc (2429386) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136149)

Actually, water is more expensive than oil, by the gallon. But I think your scenario is correct. It's also a good time to buy land in Greenland or the Arctic - just wonder where does one shop for it? Then once the transformation happens, either build there, or sell for a windfall. One thing I wonder - will Antarctica become green as well?

Re:I've played this game! (1)

MaskedSlacker (911878) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136307)

I pay $2.5 per 5 gallon jug. That's only about $27.50 a barrel, nowhere near the price of oil, and I've been in places where water costs much less than that.

Re:I've played this game! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136341)

I'm going to laugh so hard when the ice actually melts and you find out that a lot of Greenland is above-sea-level only thanks to the ice. Have fun with the "land" you bought.

Re:I've played this game! (2)

Lumpy (12016) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136423)

No it's not.

I pay $0.06 a gallon for water, and they pipe it to my home.

Re:I've played this game! (1)

LordLucless (582312) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136521)

Actually, water is more expensive than oil, by the gallon

Only if you buy it in little plastic bottles.

Re:I've played this game! (1)

dreamchaser (49529) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136635)

What are you smoking? Have you looked at the price of a gallon of drinking water lately? It is nowhere near the cost of oil, and that is for full retail bottled water. Tap water costs pennies per gallon. Meanwhile, a barrel of oil is 42 gallons. At $90/barrel you're talking about over $2 per gallon. Oil is an order of magnitude or two more expensive than water, at least in developed countries.

Re:I've played this game! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136153)

Water is cheap and plentiful. Research reverse osmosis (http://www.theregister.co.uk/2012/05/02/water_vs_energy_analysis/)

Re:I've played this game! (2)

ultranova (717540) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136185)

If you ask me, now's the time to buy land farther north. It's only going to go up in value as natural resources like water become scarce in heavily populated areas.

If water becomes scarce enough in heavily populated areas to justify transporting it continental distances, I very much doubt anyone is going to be interested in protecting your property rights. You'll be trampled by a flood of refugees fleeing the drought.

A civil society is not going to stay civil if food or water run out.

Re:I've played this game! (3, Insightful)

girlintraining (1395911) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136305)

If water becomes scarce enough in heavily populated areas to justify transporting it continental distances, I very much doubt anyone is going to be interested in protecting your property rights. You'll be trampled by a flood of refugees fleeing the drought.

Fifty to one odds you're American. Anywhere else, and you'd know what's going on outside your borders. Let's look at a place where there's already large amounts of desert, limited water resources, and tons of refugees. There's an entire continent with these problems called Africa. And would you know what -- there's property rights there. If there's one thing you can learn from them, it's that bullets are cheap. You have nothing to worry about on that front.

The other thing is, you make it sound like tomorrow the equatorial region of the planet's going to suddenly go apocalyptic and everyone will be rushing out of there overnight. Dude, this isn't Hollywood. Even at the incredible speed at which global warming is occuring, we're still talking about something that's happening at a speed unlikely to significantly change the environment you're living in within your lifetime. When I say significant, I mean "I lived in a lush forest when I was born, and now it's an apocalyptic desert where no rain falls." It just isn't happening that quickly. It's devastating, and very bad for us as a species, but it's not happening quickly.

Which means such an exodus would happen in small enough numbers that it'd be less like Army of Darkness and more like 28 Days. Large tracts of nothingness, the occasional person... nothing you can't handle with a high power rifle and some explosives, dear.

Re:I've played this game! (1)

Lumpy (12016) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136435)

Why would anyone intentionally stay in a area where water is scarce and you cant grow anything? Other than a sick and twisted repressive government? A small dirt patch that has been in the family for generations is not a valid answer.

Re:I've played this game! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136543)

Fifty to one odds you're American. Anywhere else, and you'd know what's going on outside your borders.

Oh look, a foreigner, acting like he's a noble savage and knowing stuff!

Even at the incredible speed at which global warming is occuring,

Uh huh. Sure it is. The heating/cooling cycle of the planet doesn't fit into the neat little model you think it does.

When I say significant, I mean "I lived in a lush forest when I was born, and now it's an apocalyptic desert where no rain falls." It just isn't happening that quickly.

Nothing to see here. Move along.

My mother's garden has earthworms (5, Informative)

evilsofa (947078) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136085)

My mother's garden has earthworms. This may seem unremarkable to you, but she has been living in Fairbanks, Alaska for over 40 years now and last summer was the first time she has ever seen earthworms in her garden. The climate is supposed to be too cold for too long for them to survive in the wild.

I have other relatives who live in Denali Park, Alaska, in the midst of the Alaska Range and near the tallest mountain in North America. Over the past 4 or 5 decades, they have been watching the treeline creep hundreds of feet up the sides of the mountains.

Re:My mother's garden has earthworms (2)

realkiwi (23584) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136107)

Just a couple of questions: how did they get there? Have they been migrating north underground?

Re:My mother's garden has earthworms (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136187)

You'll see when the border between the States and Canada collapses. You'll be to get a boat from Lake Ontario to the Pacific!

The were brought there (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136311)

by migrating Swallows

Re:My mother's garden has earthworms (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136387)

The Stuff You Should Know podcast episode from Dec 15th 2010 is entitled "How Earthworms Work". [howstuffworks.com] It actually had some fascinating things discussed, including the distance that they can move per year and how far they can migrate in a year.

Apparently all earthworms in North American were killed in the last Ice Age. All Earthworms we have now are immigrants from Asia and Europe that hitched a ride on plant roots brought over in very recent human migration.

More greenery =/= food crops (5, Informative)

Maow (620678) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136089)

I don't doubt that the far north is getting greener, but don't think for a moment that it'll lead to food crops way up north.

Food crops require copious light, not just absence of freezing / cold to produce crops. Oranges & bananas more so than lettuce, more so than moss.

When the sun is low on the horizon at noon, there just isn't enough sunlight to make the land productive for agriculture.

Not to mention the relative lack of rich organic material and somewhat acidic soil for the most part.

If this were not the case, then a simple greenhouse with a heater situated way up north would allow for hobbyists to grow all year round; this hasn't been the case and isn't likely to change.

The above is as I understand it as a gardener and a Canadian who laments the lousy winter (non-)growing season in the mildest part of the country and with good soil.

Re:More greenery =/= food crops (2)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136093)

Thankfully we always have the plankton from the oceans of the world to fall back on. That stuff is tasty.

Re:More greenery =/= food crops (1)

MaskedSlacker (911878) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136319)

You do know they don't actually make Soylent Green from that stuff, right?

Re:More greenery =/= food crops (1)

camperdave (969942) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136349)

You do know that Green isn't the only Soylent color, right?

Re:More greenery =/= food crops (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136223)

Then the north is best place to grow these crops seeing as during the summer months they get more hours of sun light than than the south.

Re:More greenery =/= food crops (1)

Gavagai80 (1275204) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136359)

The sunlight is never as direct, no matter how long the hours.

Re:More greenery =/= food crops (1)

Lumpy (12016) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136439)

"I don't doubt that the far north is getting greener, but don't think for a moment that it'll lead to food crops way up north."

The largest source for Cabbage and lettuce for the USA is from Alaska and Canada. there are a LOT of food crops "way up north"

Untrue (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136091)

I'm looking outside right now, and I see nothing but white snow. This story is obviously untrue.

Just like it used to be (-1, Troll)

samjam (256347) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136103)

2009 called, they want their argument back (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136167)

To sum up that site, from 2009: Blah blah blah Climategate blah blah Greenland warmer in 1000BC blah blah blah.

Really, that was 2009, they pulled the page because it's implausible to claim increased CO2 isn't the cause of global warming. Their page claiming he earth wasn't warming was similarly pulled when that argument became impossible to sustain.
In order to have credibility they needed to shift their position and ditch arguments long ago proved false, and sadly it means you have to use the Wayback machine to get a world view they held 4 years ago.

Re:Just like it used to be (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136221)

The fact that there are large fluctuations in the past is not reassuring, it is worrying. They have already determined beyond a reasonable doubt that the current uptrend is caused not by any natural cyclical phenomenon, but by human activity. If you disbelieve this aspect, you need to either educate yourself on how statistics works or else believe the experts ( 95%+ of climatologists) that accept this as true.

If you do accept this but say "so what?":

1. A varying signal does not make it easier to predict what's going to happen. It makes it harder. If there is a positive feedback loop involved in those historical temperature swings, then we may have not only prematurely triggered a new warming cycle but increased it eventual magnitude far beyond historical highs. This is speculation, yes, but at least it is plausible speculation.

Claiming that natural variation renders human-made varation safe is just... retarded. Like saying the potential damage of arson is somehow mitigated by pointing out how many fires are started by lightning, and that analogy completely ignores a potential positive-feedback relationship of one causing the other.

2. If you've ever seen a night time shot of earth from space, showing civilization as specks of light, you'll surely notice how much brighter the coasts are vs. inland areas. These are the cities, the people who will have to deal with rising oceans AND stronger ocean-borne storms. Point out some of our ancestors survived these temperatures thousands of years ago isn't terribly reassuring. For one thing, our ancestors didn't have trillions of dollars of immovable infrastructure located within a dozen miles of the sea.

Re:Just like it used to be (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136287)

The apparent presence of a negative feedback loop is what makes it more plausible that the human-made variation is "safe". I don't know why you chose to use the retarded strawman of "natural variation renders human-made variation safe".

Also "educate yourself on how statistics works"... statistics is one of the most controversial fields around. There are still unresolved controversies from hundreds of years ago. There is no one concept of how statistics should work.

What negative feedback loop? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136673)

Water vapour: "A bigger greenhouse gas than CO2" deniers used to say. Well, a warmer world holds more of it. Positive feedback.
Ice: Melts and the ground or ocean underneath is darker, increasing how much sunlight will heat the earth. Positive feedback.

What negative feedbacks?

USDA plant hardiness zones have changed (5, Informative)

SgtChaireBourne (457691) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136121)

The USDA has updated its map of plant hardiness zones [usda.gov] to reflect the new, warmer conditions. You can argue about whatever you want to argue about, but the reality is here that you can grow things further north than you could before.

Re:USDA plant hardiness zones have changed (1)

Grashnak (1003791) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136471)

You certainly can grow things up north, but the main problem is that while this sort of thing will expand the northern limits of arable land, that won't come close to compensating for the much more productive land further south that will suffer desertification.

Re:USDA plant hardiness zones have changed (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136473)

The USDA has updated its map of plant hardiness zones [usda.gov] to reflect the new, warmer conditions. You can argue about whatever you want to argue about, but the reality is here that you can grow things further north than you could before.

And yet somehow, because of the words "global' and "warming" being in this story, we'll continue to argue this fact as if it's a bad thing at any point in our immediate future (sorry, I tend not to model thousands of years into the future, my give-o-shit meter tends to fall off after the next couple hundred due to general instability unrelated to weather)

Oh, and fuck you very much Al Gore, for tainting this topic forever with politics. Appreciate that.

...has a liberal bias (5, Insightful)

freedom_surfer (203272) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136135)

As the great Colbert said - Reality has a liberal bias!

Re:...has a liberal bias (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136291)

Reality has no bias. It just is. You are mistaking Colber t for reality. He has bias and then some.
Methinks you are confused, but then you are a liberal, no need to repeat myself.

Re:...has a liberal bias (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136475)

...wwwwWHHOOOSSSssshhhhhh...

Re:...has a liberal bias (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136343)

True, but mostly because conservatism has a stupidity bias.

Greenland (2)

ixarux (1652631) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136191)

Greenland shall no longer be a misnomer with word-roots lost in time. It shall take its place amongst geographical locations whose names describe their characteristics, such as Iceland and that town in Wales.
It shall finally be green.
Greenland. Now actually green.

Disruptions (1, Funny)

jamesl (106902) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136331)

In the north's Arctic and boreal areas, the characteristics of the seasons are changing, leading to great disruptions for plants and related ecosystems.

Define "disruptions."

Climate change is normal and continuous. Our ecosystem is robust to change. Some humans apparently are not.

Re:Disruptions (2)

camperdave (969942) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136515)

Climate change is normal and continuous, and the ecosystem is robust to change... at normal rates of change. The real question is whether it is robust enough to survive the pressures we humans are putting on it? We're dumping all sorts of CO2 into the atmosphere, and at the same time, we're clear-cutting forests - the lungs of the planet. Not only that, but the number of people living on this rock has doubled in my lifetime. They've all got to be clothed and sheltered, fed and watered. We're digging up and smelting metals and dumping the residue into the lakes and streams. We fill in marshes, and level mountains. We redirect rivers. The kind of changes we ask the ecosystem to handle are massive and rapid; not thousands of generations, or hundreds, but sometimes a mere one or two generations.

No such thing as 'global warming' (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136335)

www.climatedepot.com

Are you sick of this 'man made global warming' - sorry - 'climate change' nonsense yet?

Al Gore is an Idiot (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136345)

If NASA data shows a contient wide trend, this was effected by mankind how ?

Human Caused Climate Change is and shall be Junk Science.

Siberia (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136391)

So being sent to the Gulag isn't as big a threat anymore.

"Towards the northern hemisphere" (4, Insightful)

Toam (1134401) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136397)

It isn't heading towards the northern hemisphere, it's heading towards the north pole. There is plenty of "green" in the northern hemisphere already.

Re:"Towards the northern hemisphere" (3, Insightful)

Chrisq (894406) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136429)

It isn't heading towards the northern hemisphere, it's heading towards the north pole. There is plenty of "green" in the northern hemisphere already.

I think that is the key point. People should also realise that places that are currently green further south may well become desert - this doesn't mean more green it means green further North. It seems to confirm predictions that the "Wheat belt" may move North from the contiguous USA and central Europe to Siberia, Northern Europe, Canada, and eventually possibly Alaska.

Re:"Towards the northern hemisphere" (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136599)

This is a pretty big "may" there. The headline doesn't say "Global Warming Has Made the South Less Green".

Re:"Towards the northern hemisphere" (1)

HellYeahAutomaton (815542) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136659)

I think that is the key point. People should also realise that places that are currently green further south may well become desert - this doesn't mean more green it means green further North. It seems to confirm predictions that the "Wheat belt" may move North from the contiguous USA and central Europe to Siberia, Northern Europe, Canada, and eventually possibly Alaska.

It's the blind faith in speculation of things that may happen that just disturb me, and probably should disturb any logical thinking person.

Just like the guy above in Alaska citing anecdotal evidence that the presence of earthworms in mum's garden and the forest line increasing, no one can definitively prove that a localized warming cycle is part of a part of a multi-millennial trend. Since there have only been accurate thermometers measuring data for a couple hundred years, one could easily conclude there is too small of a sample of temperature data being presented. At best, climate change illustrates a trend of a small sample space, and it worst it represents a political bold-faced lie.

Sorry, but the unprovable mays that you present are equally as likely as donkeys flying out of my ass.

No warming for past 12 years (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136499)

All scientific evidence shows (even the IPCC concedes) that there has been no global warming for at least the past 12 years, while CO2 has continued to climb. This breaks all the alarmist modeling of course, and led to the change from the global warming to global climate change mantra. Add to that the fact that Arctic ice has made a comeback, with more ice at this time of the year than seen in the previous decade; and Antarctic ice cover stubbornly remains above average. USDA is following along with the EPA for political reasons, not scientific ones.

There's been plenty of warming. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43136681)

Between 2000 and 2001: it warmed.

Between 2004 and 2005: it warmed.

If you're talking about TREND, then you need to put your error bars on that, sonny, and we know you didn't because that error bar doesn't let you assert there's been no warming.

Hmph (1)

vikingpower (768921) | about a year and a half ago | (#43136589)

After requirements creep and feature creep, we get "green creep". Now get off my lawn ! !
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