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Consensus on Global Warming

michael posted more than 9 years ago | from the heads-buried-in-the-sand dept.

Science 1200

FredFnord writes "Well, here's an interesting one: the fine folks at Science Magazine have done an analysis of the last ten years' published scientific articles (articles from crank or non-peer-reviewed publications were not counted) on the subject of global climate change. The results themselves are interesting, but the most remarkable part was that, of the 928 papers they found, 75% accepted that global warming was caused by human activities, either explicitly or implicitly. 25% made no mention either way. And not a single paper asserted otherwise." JamesBell submits this article by a geologist which suggests that the Earth is in serious, imminent, unavoidable danger.

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1200 comments

Predications (3, Funny)

stecoop (759508) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024254)

So Should I be Running climate prediction.net [ox.ac.uk] on my P4 Prescott or not?

Re:Predications (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11024400)

Can we mod all of Michael's posts -1 Troll?

Re:Predications (5, Funny)

tolan-b (230077) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024500)

No because the heat generated by the Prescott's core far outweighs the benefits to the research ;)

Rush has more common sense (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11024510)

than all those tree hugging scientist asshats

wow, what a surprise (1, Insightful)

SoupGuru (723634) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024263)

I just don't get why this is news to some people, but unfortunately it is.

I believe it... (-1)

angst7 (62954) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024266)

I ate a bunch of broccoli last night, and I've been contributing greenhouse gasses all day.

Whew!

MOD UP!!!!! +5 DUMB FUCK (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11024373)

yeah

Like it matters ... (3, Insightful)

Draoi (99421) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024275)

... as Dubya probably doesn't read Science Magazine and won't be signing [wwf.org.uk] the Kyoto protocol any time soon. So, while the US government recognises the seriousness of global warming, they refuse to do anything about it as they claim it to be 'unfair'. Unfair is one nation producing over 25% of global CO2 emissions ... :-/

(BTW, that 'fine fellow' at Science Magazine happens to be a woman :-))

Re:Like it matters ... (4, Insightful)

Wateshay (122749) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024417)

Show me some hard numbers that show the Kyoto treaty will do anything significant, other than redistribute wealth around the world and then we'll talk.

Re:Like it matters ... (2, Insightful)

daknapp (156051) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024430)

If you had RTFA, you would have noticed that they explictly point out that:

The problem can only be marginally (i.e. ineffectually) addressed by increases in alternative energy and energy efficiency, any likely savings being offset by population and economic growth. And, given the huge energy and material demands in the construction of, say, wind farms, the ultimate value of these is debatable.

Kyoto would have essentially no effect on CO2 production, at the cost of essentially destroying the global economy. While I am sure you find that an attractive idea, most people don't.

Supporting the Environment & China (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11024434)

As consumers, we can do much to support the environment. The latest annual study by the Union of Concerned Scientists concludes that Honda produces the most environmentally friendly car [yahoo.com]. If we care about the environment, we should buy only vehicles made by Honda.

Despite all the hoopla, the USA is not the greatest danger to the environment. We Americans are making steady progress. Note that Honda is technically an American automobile company since Honda does more than 50% of its manufacturing in the USA.

The greatest threat to the environment is China [phrusa.org]. The Chinese have been overwhelmingly burning coal. Coal horribly pollutes the environment and unloads tons of radioactive material into the air [pushback.com].

Given the current rate of pollution in China, once it reaches Singapore's level of economic development, the level of pollution in China will exceed that in the USA. India is equally horrible.

Re:Like it matters ... (4, Informative)

raider_red (156642) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024475)

You mean the treaty that Clinton wouldn't even submit for ratification by the Senate? And about which the Senate passed a resolution 95-0 stating that they would not ratify if it was submitted?

Re:Like it matters ... (2, Informative)

ArsSineArtificio (150115) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024513)

So, while the US government recognises the seriousness of global warming, they refuse to do anything about it as they claim it to be 'unfair'.

Well, the Bush administration is pushing hard for renewed development of nuclear power, which is the third recommendation urged by the panel of scientists in the linked article.

Re:Like it matters ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11024519)

(BTW, that 'fine fellow' at Science Magazine happens to be a woman :-))

Oh, okay...FUD...

Great (5, Insightful)

daveschroeder (516195) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024279)

Soon, it will be China and India that you're pointing fingers at, and not the US (or Europe).[1]

So... Then what?

And uh, is this news? Does anyone credible seriously disagree that emissions from human activity are at least in part contributing factors? Or is this another jab at boogiemen that don't exist? There's nothing "remarkable" about these so-called findings.

Also, the "Earth" isn't in danger. Yes, I know this distinction is splitting hairs, but what's in danger is Earth's inhabitants. Our actions are not going to alter a several billion year old rock.

[1] Don't feed me the per capita shit. China will be a far, far greater polluter in this realm, per capita or no. Further, the economic empowerment of the Chinese people will eventually drive them to a level of concern about the well-being of the environment, so, in a way, their accelerated economic development is a good thing, politically and environmentally. Incidentally, China has proven they can reduce greenhouse emissions, even while growing economically (1 [commondreams.org], 2 [nrdc.org])...but the point is, they're still on an upward trend. And they've got a lot more people who will begin to thirst for energy-hungry luxuries.

Re:Great (-1, Troll)

stupidfoo (836212) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024330)

And uh, is this news?

Nope. Just another chance for Michael to feed us his left wing nut job viewpoint. See the dupe he posted earlier.

Does anyone credible seriously disagree that emissions from human activity are at least in part contributing factors?
No, most people don't. But the disagreement is about how much of the problem is human related, and this is still extremely unclear.

Re:Great (1)

double-oh three (688874) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024461)

"Just another chance for Michael to feed us his left wing nut job viewpoint."

At times like this I'd like to point out that the evidence, and thus truth as much as we can figure it out, it agreeing with the left wing nut. So the left wing nut is right. So the left wing nut is a right(meaning correct) wing nut.

Re:Great (3, Insightful)

eln (21727) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024378)

Screaming about how things are "not fair" is just an excuse to keep from doing anything at all. The Bush Administration rejects the Kyoto protocols, whether for good reasons or not, and then refuses to do anything else about global warming. We can't simply refuse to do anything because the one proposed solution is not fair. As one of the world's most advanced nations, it's our responsibility to do everything within our power to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, starting in our own country. Once we have a plan in place to reduce our own problems, then we can go out and try to reform the solutions that other people have come up with. Instead, we're pointing fingers, and refusing ANY solutions because the ONE solution that has been presented to us by the rest of the globe is seen as "unfair".

Also, as people love to point out so much in political flamewars, pointing to someone else and saying "they're doing it too" is not a reasonable justification to continue doing the wrong thing.

Re:Great (2, Informative)

the_2nd_coming (444906) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024551)

exactly. Australia did not sign the protocol but they are aiming to find ways to reduce their emissions to the levels that Kyoto says with out harming their economy. it might take them longer to get the to to the levels stated in the treaty, but they are at least committed to getting there.

Re:Great (1)

cliffski (65094) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024402)

none of which is in any vague way a justification for the current US policy on the environment which is apparentl "Fuck everyone else, we have tanks, lets grab all the oiL". Not exactly forward thinking is it?
heres a brainwave, rather than bitching about how china might be a problem in the future, how about you 'oh-so-clever' americans lead the world as an example of how a developed nation can have sensible energy policies?
Or would that ruin GW Bush's oil portfolio?

Re:Great (1)

daveschroeder (516195) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024465)

I know you might be partly kidding (hopefully?), but this is not about anyone in the administration's personal oil "portfolios".

This is about a complicated period of transition and economic globalization, where the US is trying to keep as many jobs inside its borders as possible, while making concessions to corporations, AND also allowing some jobs to be outsourced to help keep costs down and encourage further investment by US-based corporations. It's a tricky situation, but I assure you it's no more or less about personal greed or selfishness than it would be with any other party in office.

Re:Great (1)

Ryan C. (159039) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024437)

Does anyone credible seriously disagree that emissions from human activity are at least in part contributing factors?

No, no one credible. But the president of the United States does.

These sorts of papers are needed so that the issue can be picked up by the mainstream media and the word can filter down to Joe Sixpack.

Protecting the Environment & China (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11024470)

As consumers, we can do much to support the environment. The latest annual survey by the Union of Concerned Scientists concludes that Honda produces the most environmentally friendly car [yahoo.com]. If we care about the environment, we should buy only vehicles made by Honda.

Despite all the hoopla, the USA is not the greatest danger to the environment. We Americans are making steady progress. Note that Honda is technically an American automobile company since Honda does more than 50% of its manufacturing in the USA.

The greatest threat to the environment is China [phrusa.org]. The Chinese have been overwhelmingly burning coal. Coal horribly pollutes the environment and unloads tons of radioactive material into the air [pushback.com].

Given the current rate of pollution in China, once it reaches Singapore's level of economic development, the level of pollution in China will exceed that in the USA. India is equally horrible.

Meanwhile, in the White House... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11024281)

the Bush administration affirmed that it would not do any steps towards preserving the environment if there would even be a remote chance that a single American might be temporarily inconvenience in doing so...

Global Warming on Mars (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11024293)

Mars Emerging from Ice Age, Data Suggest
By SPACE.com
posted: 03:00 pm ET
08 December 2003

Scientists have suspected in recent years that Mars might be undergoing some sort of global warming. New data points to the possibility it is emerging from an ice age.

full story at http://www.space.com/scienceastronomy/mars_ice-age _031208.html [space.com]

Re:Global Warming on Mars (4, Funny)

mrn121 (673604) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024520)

Scientists have suspected in recent years that Mars might be undergoing some sort of global warming. New data points to the possibility it is emerging from an ice age.

See, that's what happens when we start putting vehicles on Mars [cnn.com], too. That thing isn't aerosol powered, is it?

The solution... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11024297)

...is to figure out a way to turn matter directly into pure energy. That way, we could drastically reduce greenhouse gasses on the earth while netting tons of energy!

Interesting article... (4, Insightful)

Jhon (241832) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024310)

75% accepted that global warming was caused by human activities
Ok. How many of those actually attempted to show a LINK between global warming and human activities rather than just "accept" it?

Regardless, the final paragraph of the article begs a very interesting question:
Many details about climate interactions are not well understood, and there are ample grounds for continued research to provide a better basis for understanding climate dynamics. The question of what to do about climate change is also still open. But there is a scientific consensus on the reality of anthropogenic climate change.
The begged question is Will it be bad or will it be good? Wouldn't warmer climates provide more arable land? What I get out of this is "We dont know what it means, but it looks like at least SOME climate changes are caused by man".

Re:Interesting article... (1)

SoupGuru (723634) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024391)

Sure, global warming will create more arable land in Greenland... but only at the expense oflosing arable land in the desert formerly known as Iowa and similar temperate regions. Not to mention the loss of any arable land in Florida as well.

Re:Interesting article... (1)

stupidfoo (836212) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024469)

Sure, global warming will create more arable land in Greenland... but only at the expense oflosing arable land in the desert formerly known as Iowa and similar temperate regions.

Actually some models show the upper midwest would be arable year round, instead of just during the spring/summer/fall.

And then there are those models that show us getting f'ed over by glaciers...

Re:Interesting article... (1)

kalidasa (577403) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024541)

The interesting questions are 1. would global warming lead to increased or decreased desertification? 2. how would global warming affect tropical ecologies? 3. would the reduction of the polar caps lead to raising or lowering the ocean levels and what would the effects of that be (remember that a great deal of that ice is stacked up on land - on Antarctica, Greenland, and the Canadian and Siberian arctic, and not just sea ice)? 4. would global warming STOP at some reasonable temperature, or would it spin out of control and completely destroy the ecosystem (and thus, us)?

Re:Interesting article... (1)

pudge (3605) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024497)

Will it?

How do you know?

We used to think lots of things would happen that never did. Maybe you're right, and it's probably prudent to pretend you are for practical purposes. But we can't know you're right unless it ends up happening.

What I want to know is why it is OK to be a skeptic, unless you are a skeptical of modern scientific theory, in which case you're a nutjob?

Re:Interesting article... (5, Insightful)

EnderWiggnz (39214) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024428)

What I get out of this is "We dont know what it means, but it looks like at least SOME climate changes are caused by man".

and SOME studies suggest that cigarettes cause health problems.

some.

Re:Interesting article... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11024432)

It doesn't beg a question, it raises one. Welcome to the English language.

Re:Interesting article... (2, Insightful)

warrped (202864) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024474)

The use of most arable land conforms to a somewhat narrow range of temperature and rainfall. While there is certainly the capacity to adapt farming techniques to these different norms, to be perfectly honest, it would be very expensive and difficult, not to mention resulting in a rather precipitous drop in agricultural output in the meantime. Like it or not, we (people who rely on agriculture) have a fairly entrenched set of interests in the status quo insofar as it relates to climate.

Warming, schmarming... (1)

AmazingRuss (555076) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024312)

...just keep gas cheap and interest rates at all time lows. God will come save us if this turns out to a problem, be it global catastropy or the end of no money down, 90 day same as cash financing on 72" plasma tv's.

Danger (1)

koh (124962) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024313)

Earth is in serious, imminent, unavoidable danger ? You gotta be kidding. What they mean is that human beings on Earth are in serious, unavoidable danger.

The planet has seen worse, it will just route around us and be fine with it.

Re:Danger (0, Redundant)

Tebriel (192168) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024336)

"Earth is in serious, imminent, unavoidable danger ? You gotta be kidding. What they mean is that human beings on Earth are in serious, unavoidable danger.

The planet has seen worse, it will just route around us and be fine with it."

Quoted for truth.

Re:Danger (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11024385)


does this look like a fucking phpBB forum, loser?

Re:Danger (1)

nizo (81281) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024384)

So wait, not one but two other people posted similiar ideas to mine at the exact same minute? So basically whichever of the three of us is hated the least won't get modded redundant perhaps? Or is there a better way to solve ties like this? (Must learn to type faster.....)

Re:Danger (1)

koh (124962) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024553)

So wait, not one but two other people posted similiar ideas to mine at the exact same minute?

Absolutely. Coincidences like this are mind-bending but, due to the number of posters here, bound to happen from time to time.

Do you think the planet just used us to express its feelings at the same time, or is it just Pavlovian ? ;)

they don't get it... (1)

MikTheUser (761482) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024315)

JamesBell submits this article by a geologist which suggests that the Earth is in serious, imminent, unavoidable danger.

*sigh* When will people ever get it? The planet is fine. It's the people that are screwed!

Re:they don't get it... (1)

jvance (416133) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024534)

While you nerds are quibbling over semantics, Rush "Where's my Oxycontin" Limbaugh and his ilk continue to whitewash the problem and spoonfeed lies to the public. Planet or people, if we don't start doing something about this soon, we're screwed, and our kids are screwed.

And by "doing something" I don't mean hauling your plastic bottles down to the recycling center in the back of your Ford Excursion.

Danger danger! (2, Insightful)

nizo (81281) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024316)

This article by a geologist which suggests that the Earth is in serious, imminent, unavoidable danger.

Global warming will cause the earth to explode? Oh wait, you mean people (and possibly much of the life on earth) could be in danger. I doubt global warming will make much of a difference to the planet itself, except possibly to allow it to make more room for heat resistant lifeforms :-)

If the danger is unavoidable (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11024321)

Why bother reporting it? We're doomed anyway.

I just watched an interesting documentary (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11024331)

It was called "The Day After Romorrow", I think it was on the Discovery Channel. Anyone really interested in this topic should watch it. It's a real eye-opener to what we face in the near future.

Re:I just watched an interesting documentary (1)

mr_spatula (126119) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024531)

"The Day After Romorrow?"

Is that the version with Scooby and the gang?

I found the truth! (5, Funny)

lucabrasi999 (585141) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024349)

From the article:

The American Meteorological Society (6), the American Geophysical Union (7), and the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) all have issued statements in recent years concluding that the evidence for human modification of climate is compelling (8).

The American Meteorological Society and the American Geophysica Union? What a bunch of communists. They are just trying to destroy our way of life. They don't want me to live my life the way I want. Now, where did I park my Ford Explorer? I gotta run and buy a pack of smokes...

Whaddya they know? (2, Funny)

BWJones (18351) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024362)

[George W. Bush]: "All them scientists don't know nuthin. Ain't that right Andy boy?"
[Andrew Card]: "Yessir, that is absolutely correct sir. Don't know nuthin."
[George W. Bush]: "Ain't that right Scott towell?"
[Scott McClellan]: "Right in every way sir!"
[George W. Bush]: "Ain't that right Colonoscopy?"
[Colin Powell]: "I gotta get out of here."

So we're doomed? (1)

DreadPiratePizz (803402) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024365)

JamesBell submits this article by a geologist which suggests that the Earth is in serious, imminent, unavoidable danger.

Well, if it's unavoidable, then switching to renewable recourses won't do a damn thing!

Re:So we're doomed? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11024535)

Yes, assuming that slashdot knows best, since "unavoidable" doesn't appear in the linked article.

Science is no democracy (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11024368)

So no consensus is valid as a scientific argument.

First Century News:
Scientifics reach a consensum: The earth is the center of the universe

Sadly, this isn't going to change anything. (4, Insightful)

gargonia (798684) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024370)

I think the reason this is news is because the Bush administration is still trying to pretend that this is not proven science... that it's just a theory that can be ignored. They want to ignore it because it's inconvenient for their business cronies, and those business cronies fund party activities and candidates' re-elections. I don't think there will be any changes on this front until this administration is out of office, no matter how much evidence is presented. It's quite unfortunate.

Re:Sadly, this isn't going to change anything. (1)

bombadillo (706765) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024459)

What do you expect. Even contraception is considere an un-proven science to this administration.

Re:Sadly, this isn't going to change anything. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11024503)

After all the weather does not vote. And as the water rises the costal states that voted democrat will disapear.

Re:Sadly, this isn't going to change anything. (3, Insightful)

Orne (144925) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024529)

That's funny, because I look at this as news that the mass media is pretending that it is proven science... Read the details, 100% of the articles did not mention that global warming could be produced from valid geological / astrophysical events... temporary increase [space.com] in the sun's energy output, recent random volcanic activity [msn.com], you know, the kind of alternative sources that can easily be found in a google search...

I am not saying that human industrial pollution is not a contributor towards global warming, I just find it interesting that so many people think that it is the only contributor...

Serious, imminent, unavoidable danger? (3, Funny)

Dystopian Rebel (714995) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024371)

Oh come now, you panicky Chicken Littles in lab coats!

We can just hide in our SUVs. They have heated seats.

Cranks (0, Troll)

macdaddy (38372) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024375)

...articles from crank or non-peer-reviewed publications were not counted...

Is this another way of saying that anyone that disagrees with our opinion on the matter is a crank and we'll ignore their input for this "scientific" study?

Re:Cranks (1)

dezert_fox (740322) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024467)

No, it means real jokes are ignored, and any articles by people who may or may not agree with you that aren't in peer-reviewed journals are ignored as well. Dissenting opinions could be voiced.

So what? (1)

Telastyn (206146) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024389)

I assume that by 'global warming' and 'climate change' the articles are referring to the current climate as compared to years ago. A beefy computer and [now] commonly available weather data, and it's pretty clear.

I'm more interested on a consensus that the climate change will continue changing. From what I understand, that is the area under more debate, and frankly the area which will influence humanity more.

Correlation is not causality! (0, Troll)

redelm (54142) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024394)

Ever open a can of soda on a hot day? Carbon dioxide came out of solution and you got sprayed. If the Earth gets warmer for any reason (solar?geothermal), then atmospheric CO2 will increase as an effect, not cause.

Proving correlation is easy. Determining the direction of causality is much tougher.

Meaningless (1, Troll)

Knights who say 'INT (708612) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024398)

Oh, come on. Class out the peer-reviewed journals you don't like as "crank" and publish a research that says "Journals I like agree with me".

That's life in the more controversial sciences. Everyday business in economics, you learn to keep your ears up.

Tobacco (3, Insightful)

bombadillo (706765) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024401)

The Global Warming issue reminds me of big Tobacco. Deny , Deny , Deny. Years from now their will be no doubt that our habbits accelerated Global warming.

Popularity is not evidence (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11024411)

That gets a big "so what". How many have actually produced any evidence? Science should never use popularity as any kind of evidence.

I'll be dead... (2, Interesting)

DogDude (805747) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024419)

I'll be dead by the time any of this happens. What incentive is there for me to really care? Honestly? I know it's a problem, but how do you get people to care about it, when 1. They'll be dead by the time this happens and 2. There are more pressing concerns to deal with (bills, life, etc.)?

What about rejects? (3, Insightful)

ajs (35943) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024435)

How many were rejected from the peer review process which suggested or concluded otherwise? More to the point (and obviously, this cannot be known) how many were never submitted for peer review in the first place because of concern over the backlash?

Most US science funding in climate and solar research comes from the federal govt (in geological and oceanic research sizable amounts can come from private groups). When politicians don't want to look like they're anti-environment they screen funding to make sure it's not going to go to "enemies of the planet" (I kid you not, that's the phrase).

How can a survey of peer reviewed journals be a valid source of data when people are afraid to publish "the wrong results"?

Perhaps global warming is caused by adult white male toenail clippings, but I'm pretty sure we have no reasonable way of finding that out right now.

Peer review? (1)

igny (716218) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024447)

Don't published papers go through peer review before being published? I imagine the following reviews... "This paper claims that humans are not at fault for the global warming. It lacks conclusive evidence, and it clearly contradicts 500 papers (some partial list is provided) on this subject. I recommend to reject this paper unless revised."

Another danger of Global Warming... (4, Insightful)

Saeger (456549) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024452)

...is being suckered into accepting the neutral "Climate Change" euphemism, which downplays its significance. I wonder who started that trend?...Hmm...

A general question about global warming... (1)

ChangeOnInstall (589099) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024456)

It seems just about every article I read about global warming tends to show a plot from about 1200 or 1400 A.D. to present showing average global temperature. In this plot there are several distinctive sharp increases and decreases in various 50 year periods. The greatest increase is shown between 1950-2000, and tends to be about 50% larger than the next biggest increase.

Perhaps I'm reading articles that are too oriented toward the layman (probably the case), but I never see a reasonable explanation of how the graph is relevant given that it shows several other warming trends that carry 2/3 the magnitude of the current one. I've always looked at these graphs and read them as "we're in a warming trend that is slightly greater than the ones we've had in the past millennium." This has always been a sticking point for me with global warming, though I'm genuinely open to learning more.

Re:A general question about global warming... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11024521)

There's also major changes that go way back into pre-history also along with a well know ice age. No industrialization yet it still has happened. There's also a good correlation to the current trend and Sun output.

Michael Crichton just said... (1, Interesting)

mveloso (325617) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024463)

I just read an interview with Michael Crichton about the chicken little behaviors. it was a promo for his book, State of Fear.

The article started off with an ominous warning about climate change from the 1970s about...global cooling. The article title was "Let's stop scaring ourselves."

The link below doesn't work yet.

http://archive.parade.com/2004/1205/1205_stop_sc ar ing.html

Another amusing article by him is "Aliens Cause Global Warming"

http://www.ccfassociation.org/crichton2.htm

I'm sure scientists today have learned lots of lessons from the mistakes of scientists of yesteryear. Right.

I have a simple question: (1)

alexjohns (53323) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024478)

Would Galileo, Copernicus, Pasteur, and the like be published in peer-reviewed journals today or would they be in the crank ones? I don't know the answer. If I had the answer, I'd know which journals to pay attention to.

I'm not denying Global Warning exists, but I'm not 100% convinced, either. All I'm asking is, are the naysayers of today more likely to be true 'cranks', or are they more likely to be people who espouse views not in keeping with what their peers believe?

Just asking questions. No reason to get all excited.

The problem is this discussion is now political (2, Interesting)

jludwig (691215) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024482)

How about books that argue against global warming, do those count?

http://www.lomborg.com/books.htm [lomborg.com] Or any of the following reviews or responses in Nature and Science?

http://www.lomborg.com/critique.htm [lomborg.com]

Oh right, those don't count because refuting environmental destruction claims isn't politically correct! Look, I don't agree with much of what Bjorn says, but the point is he compiled some statistics, came to some conclusions, and was then ostracized by the political machine for being "irresponsible" for advocating what a very liberal Euro nation dubbed "wreckless science". The critique of his science (that wasn't much of that) was second to the smear campaign leveled against him for being irresponsible. His work didn't "count" I guess in however cooked up his stupid statistic also.

This is the same thing John Stewart was talking about during his CNN Crossfire talk, we're so right or left now we can't have an honest debate about real issues, which we really need. No papers are published because its career death because a very liberal academia has decided anyone going against this trend is scum, without even looking at the science. Nature would not accept a paper from someone that claimed otherwise, but this is a debate we really need to have folks.

Jeff

I may be too young... (1)

Omniscientist (806841) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024484)

I don't have too many years under my belt (less than 50), but every year has gotten hotter and hotter and less snow. 10 years ago we had blizzards constantly, last year we maybe had 2 days of snow. That could just be a natural variance in temperature between seasons, but it seems to go hand in hand with all this talk about global warming.

oh a like a 50 year period is statistically (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11024549)

relevant...asshat

Isn't the first time... (1)

jimmydigital (267697) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024491)

Hasn't the climate been drastically changing for millions of years... were we the cause of that too? Isn't it just possible the one ultimate source of all our energy (aka the Sun) is responsible for the warming trends just as it has been for all of measurable history? What wonderful arrogance that our blink of an eye existence could cause such global changes... Hate to break it to you.. but industrial emissions have only been around for a 100 years or so... which is not even a blip on the radar in the geologic time that such changes are measured.

Inexpensive land? (2, Insightful)

nizo (81281) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024492)

Sea level has constantly fluctuated in the geological past: its highest recorded level was in the Cretaceous Period, some 80 million years ago, when CO2 levels were considerably higher than at present, and ice-caps were virtually absent from the earth. Then, sea level stood at least 200 metres higher than today, with most of the UK being submerged.

Now the key is to figure out where the least expensive land is that is currently about 202 meters above sea level so I can have beachfront property to retire on. I wonder if I can get a good deal on a submerged English castle to ship over to move onto said property?

Somebody find the statistics! (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11024502)

I'm not really surprised. Hell, I've witnessed it myself! I don't have the statistics, but I hope someone can bring them up - the average temperature in Finland has rised [I]dramatically[/I] in recent years. We don't even have decent winters here in southern Finland anymore. Please, if you can dig up some statistics, give us a link! This is interesting!

Finally a solution (4, Insightful)

Wateshay (122749) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024515)

A solution from the last link:
a large-scale switch to civil nuclear power. This has the benefit of being proven technology. We are aware of the problems, and current public unpopularity of this route, but we consider the dangers posed by global warming to be orders of magnitude greater than those likely to be caused by the controlled use of nuclear power. This energy source, additionally, could lie at the heart of future hydrogen-based transport systems.


Now, there's a solution I can get behind (no, I'm not joking). Nuclear energy, pursued with a strong eye towards safety and security, would be a step forward in terms of our efficiency and use of energy.

Bankrupting the industrialized nations of the world for an unproven solution isn't.

A wise man once said... (1)

alphabet26 (534873) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024524)

"Save the Earth??? The Earth is fine! The people are f**ked." - George Carlin [georgecarlin.com]

I don't understand why scientists insist on saying the Earth is in danger. The Earth doesn't care, it's a rock. Maybe if they start saying The Human Race is in "serious, imminent, unavoidable danger" people might pay attention.

No, probably not.

So what, it will just make evolution go back... (1)

suso (153703) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024525)

to the drawing board.

We won't destroy the earth (unless we physically blew it up). What will probably happen is that life (probably not ours) will adapt to the new warmer or colder climate and go on. After all, not all life on earth thrives due to an oxygen rich 72 degree atmosphere. Some life flourishes in places that are deadly to us humans.

Either global warming is real... (1)

davidwr (791652) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024533)

Either global warming is real, scientists take it as a given, or scientists are afraid to do research that would contravene conventional wisdom.

The scientific consensus might, of course, be wrong.

Although my bet is on #1, the thoughts of #2, scientific complacency, or #3, scientific political correctness are actually more scary.

Just to be clear - #2 and #3 are 99-1 longshots in my humble opinion.

The bottom line - assume we are the cause of the problem and look to find solutions, but at the same time, if someone does good, solid research that shows this assumption is wrong, publish it.

Their methodology is biased (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11024547)

Who decides what a "crank" or "non-peer-reviewed" publication is? They can just declare every publication that happens to have a conservative or business-oriented viewpoint as "crank", and then they can ignore contrary viewpoints. The fact is that there are credible, scientifically sound alternative theories that are ignored only because of the liberal bias of the scientific establishment, and that establishment controls what gets published and what doesn't.

What isinteresting about this (1)

earthforce_1 (454968) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024550)

From the climate simulation studies I have seen, Canada would be one of the very few places on earth that would actually benefit from global warming. Much of the northern territories would become viable for farming, and the northern passage explorers have dreamed about for centuries between east and west would become a reality, effectively making the Panama canal obsolete if it warmed up enough to permit year round traffic.

On the other hand, Africa gets totally screwed - the sahara expands to cover 80% of the continent, most of it is uninhabitable and some island states like the Maldives get flooded out and cease to exist.

I call bullcrap... (1, Interesting)

wayward_son (146338) | more than 9 years ago | (#11024557)

Sea level has constantly fluctuated in the geological past: its highest recorded level was in the Cretaceous Period, some 80 million years ago, when CO2 levels were considerably higher than at present, and ice-caps were virtually absent from the earth. Then, sea level stood at least 200 metres higher than today, with most of the UK being submerged.

If global warming is truly human caused, how could sea levels have been highest during the Cretaceous Period, millions of years before mankind?

Couldn't this be part of a natural cycle? If so, I doubt that humans can do much of anything either way about global climate change.

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