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Cleaner Air Adds To Global Warming

samzenpus posted more than 8 years ago | from the catch-22 dept.

751

shmlco writes "In the "You Can't Win For Losing" department, an article on the BBC web site is reporting that reduced air pollution and increased water evaporation appears to be adding to man-made global warming. Research presented at a major European science meeting adds to other evidence that cleaner air is letting more solar energy through to the Earth's surface. Burn fossil fuels, you make things worse. Clean up your act, and you make things worse. Is it time to set off a few nukes and see if nuclear winter can cool things down?"

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Angels Down? (1)

meburke (736645) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085341)

Didn't jerry pournell explain how the world escaped an ice age in the appendixes to his book, "Angels Down"?

Mike

Re:Angels Down? (1)

PrimalChrome (186162) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085359)

The book was "Fallen Angels"....fiction.

Re:Angels Down? (1)

way2trivial (601132) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085373)

no.

he referred in that book to a world that was suffering from an ice age,
but that was not the issue, and it was not solved it in the text...

a solution was discussed/not implemented...

Re:Angels Down? (4, Informative)

JasonKChapman (842766) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085563)

he referred in that book to a world that was suffering from an ice age, but that was not the issue, and it was not solved it in the text...

Acutally, the book was Fallen Angels [baen.com] by Jerry Pournelle and Michael Flynn, and it went a little further than that. The ice age had been held off by pollution-related greenhouse warming. It was only after the world cleaned up its act that the ice age came on.

It's a great book. The heroes were SF fans.

Re:Angels Down? (1, Interesting)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085614)

I think, if you check, you'll find that Larry Niven had something to do with it. In fact, if you check carefully, you'll find that Larry and Jerry called in Mr. Flynn (I don't use his first name because I don't know him personally, unlike the other two authors.) because they were having problems make it jell.

Re:Angels Down? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15085665)

gel?

Don't agree with global warming (1, Insightful)

homeysimpson (966291) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085353)

Never have understood the whole argument, when one the one hand, yes we are polluting everything and need to clean things up, but on the other hand what about volcanoes, cow manure and all the other natural things we can't control? They contribute far more to global warming than cars do. Although, not to be outdone by lowely mother nature, mankind will surely find something to really fork up the atmosphere.

Re:Don't agree with global warming (4, Insightful)

Leon_Trotsky (702427) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085398)

If cows pollute more than cars, it's because we breed them in huge numbers. This is not "natural".

Point is that man-made pollution is more than the earth can absorb because there are too many humans. If we reduced the population, earth would be better able to absorb the naturally-created pollution.

Re:Don't agree with global warming (1, Insightful)

bschonec (966875) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085424)

What? Overpopulated? Have you ever been to the United States? How about OUTSIDE any metropolitan city? I can travel 30 miles in any direction and be far far from any 'over population'.

Re:Don't agree with global warming (4, Insightful)

Frymaster (171343) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085545)

What? Overpopulated? Have you ever been to the United States? How about OUTSIDE any metropolitan city? I can travel 30 miles in any direction and be far far from any 'over population'.

you're assuming that the only space and resouces that people use are the ones they're standing or living on.

what about the land needed to grow the food these people eat? that's not in cities. what about the water required to irrigate deserts so those people can have lettuce in january? that's not in cities. what about all the oil required to run suvs and make platic shampoo bottles for all those people? what about the massive hydro and coal electricity projects needed to run all those electric shavers and 60" televisions?

just consider food for a moment. the average north american diet requires 3 acres of areable land per person per year. for the entire population of the united states that works out to just less a billion acres.

overpopulated.

Re:Don't agree with global warming (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15085598)

So as long as there are places where there aren't many people, we can conclude that the total population is not more than can be sustainably supported? Does that actually make sense to you?

Re:Don't agree with global warming (2, Funny)

Leon_Trotsky (702427) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085610)

Ohhh I forgot, the US has it's own independent atmosphere. Keep all o'dat foreign CO2 outta here.

Yes the world is overpopulated.

Re:Don't agree with global warming (4, Informative)

muyuubyou (621373) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085617)

I can travel 30 miles in any direction and be far far from any 'over population'.
Which doesn't matter in the slightest. They are consuming resources from all over the world, be it the Amazon rainforest, oil from Saudi Arabia or cheap manufactured goods from polluting factories in southern China.

Re:Don't agree with global warming (4, Funny)

gEvil (beta) (945888) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085639)

My 10 gallon fishtank has about 500 goldfish in it right now. There's still room left for a few hundred more. I don't understand why people think the tank is overpopulated.

Re:Don't agree with global warming (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15085720)

Because they're jealous that some of your fish have succeeded in a very short time while the rest of the fish haven't succeeded in their entire lives.

Re:Don't agree with global warming (3, Insightful)

susano_otter (123650) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085716)

If cows pollute more than cars, it's because we breed them in huge numbers. This is not "natural".

What do you mean? If we're products of evolution, then we humans are supremely natural. Furthermore, everything we do is supremely natural. Just as bees act according to their nature, and whales act according to their nature, so do we act according to our nature. How could it be otherwise? At what point would you say that "un-nature" has been introduced into the process?

Lions use teeth and claws to take their prey. This is natural. Apes use twigs to fish ants out of anthills. This is natural. Bats use sonar and aerobatic maneuvers to snatch bugs out of the air. This is natural. And we humans use our minds and hands to imagine and build tools to accomplish the desires of our hearts. This is natural.

Are you saying that space aliens have secretly induced us to act against our nature? Perhaps we are breeding unnatural numbers of cows to feed their alien appetites (it would explain the cattle abductions and mutilations). But wouldn't the aliens--and their cow-cravings--also be natural? Wouldn't that make the entire Human-Cow-Alien system yet another natural phenomenon?

Are you saying that the Flying Spaghetti Monster has laid down a moral law restricting the number of cows we can naturally breed, and that it goes against the FSM's law to breed more cows than that? If so, we can all look forward to being whipped with wet noodles for all eternity, in the afterlife.

But seriously, what natural or moral yardstick are you using to measure the nature of Man? Because it seems to me that if Man is a product of nature, then all the products of Man are also products of nature.

Cow population, nuclear reactors, SUVs, Catholicism, Nazism, anthropogenic factors in climate change: All natural. So where's the problem?

And don't say that the problem is that we're going to make ourselves extinct. Species make themselves extinct all the time. Nothing more natural than that. Ebola has a hard time spreading because it overuses its resources and kills its host too quickly. It's natural when viruses do it--and not just viruses; all organisms tend towards this, if not restrained by natural effects such as other organisms or environmental conditions (and note that the lack of such restraints is also natural). Why should it be unnatural when humans do it?

Re:Don't agree with global warming (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15085401)

Polluting everything? Huh? Yeah there's SOME pollution, but compared to just 100 years ago, the environment is amazingly clean.

Just check out picutres of Chicago, Cincinnati or other slaughter-house cities from the 20's. Horse manure, entrails and the sky was filled with black smoke from coal burning.

When are the environmentalists going to admit that it's not "Global Warming" they're trying to prevent? It's all about DESTROYING industrialization.

Re:Don't agree with global warming (2, Interesting)

goofyheadedpunk (807517) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085623)

When are the environmentalists going to admit that it's not "Global Warming" they're trying to prevent? It's all about DESTROYING industrialization.

Hmm... interesting conclusion.

Let's see, the earth is warming due in large part to the effects of human beings spewing crud into the atmosphere. A warmer earth tends to be covered with more water, have more violent weather patterns, and be all around less hospitable to life as we currently enjoy it. How do we spew crud into the atmosphere or otherwise adversely affect the ecosystem? Well, there's burning things in bulk, sometimes for transportation and sometimes for industry, there's promoting a certain type of environmentally impactive animal over another less harsh type, there's the paving of large swaths of the earth's surface, and so on and so forth.

Now, you're positing that people who want activities such as the above to be curtailed desire to destroy industrialization. You, sir, win today's specious reasoning award.

Re:Don't agree with global warming (2, Insightful)

hawkfish (8978) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085487)

what about volcanoes, cow manure and all the other natural things we can't control? They contribute far more to global warming than cars do
No they don't [realclimate.org] .

Re:Don't agree with global warming (-1, Flamebait)

DesireCampbell (923687) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085503)

The worst thing I've ever heard is because of the greatest technological advancements in Human history, the last couple hundred years have seen an increase in the overall surface temperature of the Earth.

An increase of 2 freaking degrees - FAHRENHEIT!!

Two degrees? On the surface? That's the best scare you can give us? Two degrees is nothing! Industrial revolution, mass globalization, nuclear weapon testing - and two degrees?!

Saying people are causing global warming is like saying we're causing the Earth to spiral into the sun (it's happening, very slowly, but we're not to blame).

Re:Don't agree with global warming (1)

vertinox (846076) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085664)

An increase of 2 freaking degrees - FAHRENHEIT!!

Well if by serious change you mean that two degrees makes Greenland's or Antartics temperature go from 31 to 33 degrees Fahrenheit...

Well... Then we are pretty much SOL.

Re:Don't agree with global warming (1, Flamebait)

Chris Burke (6130) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085721)

Of course two degrees doesn't sound scary, by itself. When you think of all the energy represented by raising the temperature of the entire planet by two degrees, and then think about how that extra energy will affect weather systems, perhaps you should start to be a little more scared.

I'm reminded of scene from a movie, that one featuring Tommy Lee Jones versus a volcano that pops up under LA. Not a very good movie, but nevertheless... There's a scene where the love interest/geologist is explaining in worried tones to Tommy Lee Jones that the water temperature of some pond had risen by a few degrees in some short period of time. Mr. Jones, like yourself is non-plussed. She then goes on to explain just how much energy it would take to raise the temperature of such a body of water by the seemingly small amount, e.g. "a geological event". Cue lava spewing out of the streets of LA as science flees for the hills, never to be seen again...

What I'm saying is that just because a number sounds small and non-scary doesn't mean it is. A few degrees represents an enormous impact on our environment, the kind anti-global-warming types claim humans could never have. Yet the fact is that CO2 levels are vastly higher than they've been in hundreds of thousands of years. We have outstripped volcanoes and any other natural method of increasing CO2 levels beyond the normal seasonal plant uptake/release. CO2 is almost certainly part of a strong feedback cycle with global temperature. We are having an impact, and a few degrees is both huge and just the tip of the iceberg if we don't change things.

Re:Don't agree with global warming (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15085552)

Um, Volcano's don't add to global warming, they create global cooling. With the ash in the atmosphere it allows less solar energy to penetrate the earth, thereby cooling it.

Re:Don't agree with global warming (2, Informative)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085705)

Volcanos add to global warming by releasing CO2, and to cooling by releasing clouds of ash. Sometimes one predominates, sometimes the other. It can go either way.

Re:Don't agree with global warming (1, Insightful)

nEoN nOoDlE (27594) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085562)

Where are your sources for "cow manure causes more global warming than cars?" Why is there a thick curtain of smog around Los Angeles but not over the cows north of the city? To put on your blinders and say that man is barely an influence on this planet so we should just ignore any sign of global warming is probably worse than the fear mongers who take any new study in global warming to convince you that we're headed for the apocalypse if we don't burn our cars and bike to work from now on.

Re:Don't agree with global warming (1)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085668)

I take it you don't live in Los Angeles, as I do. First Stage Smog Alerts are rare, now, because the air is much cleaner. Also, the air over the LA Basin wouldn't be clean even without having a city there because of something called an inversion layer that keeps the air from circulating freely. As evidence, the Indian name for the area translates as "the land of smoky air."

Help me find the reference - (1)

mmell (832646) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085575)

I recall reading once that solar energy output varies in a sinusoidal fashion (i.e., our sun is "ringing"). Solar output directly influences global meteorology on our planet - the primary assertion of the article I remember was that while terrestial activity may have an impact on our ecology, the output of the Sun itself is responsible for most of the grand sweeps of weather on our planet.

Example: the "little ice age" (think: dark ages) coincided precisely with the "Maunder minimum" (a period of virtually no sunspot activity which lasted over a century).

Re:Don't agree with global warming (1)

iminplaya (723125) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085615)

Look to the oceans. This is where the problem lies. We are killing off its ability to filter the gasses coming from the planet's interior. Of course it's possible the earth's weakening magnetic field could have something to do with it. We still have no clue, but I would start looking into how we can restore oceanic plant life. And our great great grand kids will know if I was right.

Re:Don't agree with global warming (0, Flamebait)

Intangion (816356) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085631)

wow i had no idea how stupid most of the people on slashdot were when it comes to global warming.. just reading over some of the retarded responces from people scares me into realizing just how few people realize what a serious problem global warming is

2 degrees ON AVERAGE is a huge problem its much warmer in some areas, (and cooler in some)
the polls are melting, that ice reflects light back out into space, with it melting leaving a big dark ocean to absorb more light/heat it heats things up even quicker

also all that melting ice raises water levels

also if coral reefs which produce TONS of oxegen get a couple degrees hotter they die, they provide most of the oxygen for all of us

also cars and especially burning coal and oil at power plants contributes way more greenhouse gases and polution consistently than nature ever has (volcanos are similuar but there are thousands of them burning around the clock)

Re:Don't agree with global warming (1)

Eric Damron (553630) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085713)

"...what about volcanoes, cow manure and all the other natural things we can't control? They contribute far more to global warming than cars do."

You really think so? Sorry but my bullshit meter just popped a fuse on that one...

Is it time to set off a few nukes? (1, Flamebait)

goofyheadedpunk (807517) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085354)

I think I speak for most of humanity when I say, ahem, "WHAT THE FUCK ARE YOU THINKING?"

This message brought to you by the Upright, Sensible People Department.

Re:Is it time to set off a few nukes? (1)

Stormwatch (703920) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085554)

WOOOSH! That was the sound of the joke passing you by!

Bad idea (5, Funny)

Jordan Catalano (915885) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085356)

Is it time to set off a few nukes and see if nuclear winter can cool things down?"

Uh-uh. Last time I tried that on Sim Earth, my planet was overtaken by sentient robots. Of course, the robots eventually get taken out by carnivirous plants, but is that really much of an improvement?

Re:Bad idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15085456)

Uh-uh. Last time I tried that on Sim Earth, my planet was overtaken by sentient robots. Of course, the robots eventually get taken out by carnivirous plants, but is that really much of an improvement?

Only if they freeze to death during the winter.

Re:Bad idea (1)

bohemian72 (898284) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085635)

Well, yeah! If we get a toe hold again, we can eat the plants. At least more likely that we can eat robots.

Ack (1)

TheRev (109322) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085364)

Damed if you do, damed if you don't.

I for 1 can use a little bit more warm weather, not too warm though.

Re:Ack (1)

Leon_Trotsky (702427) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085447)

Those damn dames...

Re:Ack (1)

nelsonal (549144) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085496)

Well, um, this is slashdot.

Re:Ack... Global Dimming (1)

Tikicult (901090) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085569)

There was a study done (don't remember by who) on the concept of global dimming a few years ago. They have been measuring the amount of sunlight that hits the ground, and they compared those measurements to the amount of sunlight that hit the ground on the week or so that airplanes were grounded after 9/11. The planes being grounded reduced the amount of carbon in the atmosphere, resulting in a marked increase in the sunlight hitting the earths surface... Pollution actually reduces the amount of global warming by causing global dimming. I think that the earth is supposed to be a much brighter place, er.. maybe smarter is a better word.

- smoke 'em if you got 'em.

Joe

Must be due to the (5, Funny)

ThatsNotFunny (775189) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085365)

Marked increase in SMUG. Damn you, George Clooney!

time to panic! (1)

drunkasian (734665) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085368)

Kent: So, professor, would you say it's time for everyone to panic?
Professor: Yes I would, Kent. 1F09 [snpp.com]

Surely that doesn't change things? (2, Interesting)

cliffski (65094) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085372)

Air pollution kills people anyway, so its not exactly a 'solution' to encourage air pollution surely?
Cue lots of 'hilarious' ironic tabloid newspaper columinsts suggesting that we all fill up the SUVS to 'do our bit' though.

Re:Surely that doesn't change things? (1)

zardo (829127) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085618)

I'll tell the wife we can buy that customized muscle car now.

not that far off (4, Interesting)

Goldsmith (561202) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085374)

I've seen a (semi) serious suggestion that the best way to deal with global warming is to put a thin film of dust in between the earth and the sun. This wasn't from some internet hack either, but a rather senior physicist.

That's not a bad idea... (1)

Skyshadow (508) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085476)

Given that it's extremely unlikely that we'll see global CO2 emissions controlled anytime in the near future, I suspect it's probably time to start looking for alternative answers for how to control the overheating problem that we're encountering.

That said, I'd rather see something a little more organized like, say, a large solar shade positioned between the sun and the earth. It would be harder to implement, sure, but it would also be vastly easier to fine-tune -- if the scientists were a little bit off on their estimates of how much sunlight needed to be kept from reaching the earth, it's easier to retune a solar shade than to vaccuum up a lot of dust (or live through an accidental ice age).

AOL CDs and Chip bags (1)

kippy (416183) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085735)

Space based solutions sound pretty neat but considering the outlandish costs of getting something out of our gravity well, I think surface based solutions are a better approach. After all, land in the middle of nowhere is cheap, reflective material is also cheap (or free if you scavange) and you can bounce sunlight back into space at 1kW per square meter.

So you can spend $1 to bounce a kilowatt or you can spend thousands to do it in space. Seems obvious to me. Isn't Navada mostly federal land anyway?

Re:That's not a bad idea... (2, Funny)

Divide By Zero (70303) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085749)

That said, I'd rather see something a little more organized like, say, a large solar shade positioned between the sun and the earth.

I keep trying to get "Launch Solar Shade" passed, but I can't get the votes - I have the energy market cornered and Lal, Santiago and Zakharov have decided that they don't want to trade with me.

I am going to nerve staple those bastards if I ever get my hands on them.

Re:not that far off (1)

MajorDick (735308) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085507)

Senior enough to have alzheimers ?

The simple amount of pollution that would be generated HERE on earth to accomplish this would be far worse than the benifits

Think about it.
Factory to Produce umpteen rockets
Factories to produce umpteen electronics for said spaceships
Power generation to produce fuel for umpteen rockets
Water vapor from launch of umpteen rockets

And on and on and on.

This is probably the same guy that says drive an electric car save the enviroment, when you boil it all down to generation losses, power generation polution, and envirmental damage from toxic chemicals used in the batteries an electric car is about TWICE as polluting as a modern compact.

EVERYTHING has cause and effect....this ones effect would seem massive indeed

Re:not that far off (1)

nharmon (97591) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085725)

Electric cars pollute twice as much? Seriously? Do you have a link to back that up? I'm asking because it would be terrific fodder to use against my hybrid driving yuppy friends.

Re:not that far off (1)

zippthorne (748122) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085742)

volcanoes put ash into the atmosphere without rockets. so do non-air-burst nuclear bombs. so, infact, does MOAB albeit to a lesser extent. Think the weapon the Russians had in Dr. Strangelove.

Re:not that far off (1)

daeg (828071) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085535)

Where would you get enough dust to do that? We're not talking a dumptruck full, are we? Got a link? Sounds interesting.

Re:not that far off (1)

dr_dank (472072) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085646)

I've seen a (semi) serious suggestion that the best way to deal with global warming is to put a thin film of dust in between the earth and the sun.

Would you want to risk missing out on first contact with an advanced race because Earth didn't pass the white glove test?

Re:not that far off (4, Funny)

Keebler71 (520908) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085734)

oh! oh! Can I suggest a name?! Can we call this new innovation an "atmosphere"?

We must completely ban the use of... (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15085381)

...dihydrogen monoxide before it is too late. Call your representative now!

Re:We must completely ban the use of... (2, Interesting)

RandomPrecision (911416) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085596)

Heh. We sent a dihydrogen monoxide ban around my high school. With details like

It is found in 99% of cancer cells

Large quantities are known to kill people

It is found in quantity in the brains of sociopaths

It is a vehicle for spreading most diseases

A powerful solvent in and of itself

Allows the breeding of mosquitos

We actually got quite a few vehement people wanting to ban this chemical in all of its forms.

Need something explained to me (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15085384)

I wasn't under the impression that air pollution was getting better. Are we not still horrendously more polluted than we were a hundred years ago, when the temperature shifts started getting nasty?

Hopefully somebody can explain this in simple terms. Also, hopefully that somebody isn't on somebody else's politically-based payroll.

I agree (1, Interesting)

MajorDick (735308) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085389)

"set off a few nukes and see if nuclear winter can cool things down"

By the time my kids are my age that may be the only option.
And it may not be a bad one
The U.S. has some nice large yield hydrogen bombs that are "clean" well as "clean" as a thermonuclear device can be.

Where is the question, would sea level blasts in the arctic work ? or maybe mid atlantic, shit Bikini Atol is still crapped up from last time maybe thats a good place

A "PURE" fusion device would be ideal.

Maybe we could create a "Dust Pump" to chock all that shit upwards, or better yet, figure out how to trigger about 5 large volcano blasts. A volcano produces MUCH more ash and reduces temperatures much more than a Nuke....

Say bye bye Mt. St Helens....

Re:I agree (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15085660)

How about detonating a few of those nukes inside of some volcanoes? Sounds like a win-win situation to me.

Kill two birds with one stone... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15085666)

Why don't we just fucking nuke the middle east already and get rid of those oil hoarding terrorists while we simultaneously save the environment?

Re:I agree (1)

zardo (829127) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085695)

When you say "clean" you are only referring to direct bi-product heavy metal isotopes, like Sr-90. A nuclear bomb still emits nuclear radiation, radiating everything in a direct line of sight. You go to the site of the trinity blast and it's a mass of solid glass with higher-than-normal radioactivity.

That's like saying the sun is not dangerous because it operates on pure fusion.

Re:I agree (1)

vertinox (846076) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085719)

By the time my kids are my age that may be the only option.

Wouldn't it be easier to paint the entire Sahara and Gobhi desert in white reflective paint to send more sun back into space?

I know nuclear weapons are kind of cool, but I still have a could more years before I can afford that fallout bunker.

How to solve global warming (2, Interesting)

Poromenos1 (830658) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085407)

1. Create huge heat-powered laser
2. Shoot the beam to outer space
3. Profit!

Another example of trying to help going bad (1)

tddoog (900095) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085410)

If you plant more trees (in certain locales) to soak up CO2 then that increases warming.

http://www.newscientist.com/article.ns?id=dn1003 [newscientist.com]

oh the despair ;)

Simple ,Chrome shingles. (1)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085485)

Just start making the every roof and road reflective. Start floating giant Mylar blankets in the middle of the oceans. Problem solved.
Actually the reflective roofs would be nice here in Florida :)

Re:Simple ,Chrome shingles. (1)

tddoog (900095) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085681)

I like the way you think. They could reality tv shows called "Pimp my house" and you could get solar powered spinners and there would be bling everywhere.

New Ice Age will take care of it (3, Insightful)

FatRatBastard (7583) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085411)

Have no fear, global warming that this generation of scientists are sure is happening will meet head on with the new global ice age that the previous generation of scientists were sure was happening and the net effect is we'll all have weather like San Diego.

Change != Worse (4, Interesting)

notnAP (846325) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085421)

Burn fossil fuels, you make things worse. Clean up your act, and you make things worse
s/make things worse/change the environment/
Maybe we should just realize that we live and therefore we affect the world around us, and that the environment is ever changing. Oh, and things evolve. And it's not a good idea to build a dream home on a sand dune.

Re:Change != Worse (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15085729)

And it's not a good idea to build a dream home on a sand dune.

Where were you TWO years AGO?! AAAAGGGHHHHHHHH

Shut The Hell Up (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15085431)

Maybe all these activist should just shut the hell up and come back when they really know what the fuck is going on.

No, no, no... (3, Informative)

Cally (10873) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085437)

The story submitter has profoundly misunderstood the BBC story.
"> reduced air pollution and increased water evaporation appears to be
>adding to man-made global warming.

Actually, the pollution was (or 'is', in southern Asia and China) *masking* the effects of increased warming at ground level. Cleaning up the air doesn't add additional forcing; it merely keeps it elsewhere.

I don't think I can bear to read the following hundreds of ignorant "I've heard it's all due to the sun getting hotter" crap we always get on Slashdot AGW stories. If you think that, you don't know what you're talking about. Go away and read Real Climate [realclimate.org] or, for a comprehensive refutation of all the trolls we can expect to see attached to this story, please refer to this excellent debunking of so-called 'sceptic' canards, lies and deliberate mis-statements of facts [blogspot.com] .

Re:No, no, no... (3, Insightful)

jmorris42 (1458) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085704)

> I don't think I can bear to read the following hundreds of ignorant "I've
> heard it's all due to the sun getting hotter" crap we always get on Slashdot
> AGW stories.

Right, your religious faith sustains you through anything, especially anything as puny as logic or facts that don't support your beliefs. Dude, anybody that belives Global Warming is both a) established as a fact beyond debate and b) that the CAUSE of such warming is also established beyond debate is an ignorant savage deserving of exactlt the same attention of reasoning beings as Pat Robertson, Usama Bin Laden and the rest of the religious fanatics bedeviling the civilized world.

The sun IS burning hotter. NASA is detecting upward temperature trends on Mars and I really don't think that is amendable to human intervention. The temprature on Mars doesn't depend on our CO2 emission levels, whether or not you drive a hybrid car or if we ratify the Kyoto Treaty.

We desperately need to get the religion and green politics out of our science so we can answer the questions that matter. Is the earth warming? Is it cyclic? If it is dangerous to us and our civilization, what are the options for solving the problems? For instance, assume the Earth is warming in a non-cyclic pattern. Is the answer to destroy industrialized civilization in order to save it or is it possible to use our science to offset the bad effects?

But to the small minded intolerant political types like yourself there are no questions and the answer was the same as before the reason was global warming. To a socialist the answer to every problem is always more socialism. Global Warming is just this week's excuse because you guys decided fear might sell better than greed and class envy.

Right data, wrong interpretation (1)

pHatidic (163975) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085440)

What this really means is that global warming is already even worse than it appears, because it is being offset somewhat by temporary smog.

As for the water vapor, water vapor is the most powerful greenhouse gas. When the earth gets warmer more water vapor is in the atmosphere. The reason we don't know exactly how warm it will get is because we don't know exactly where the water vapor sits in the atmosphere yet. However, just because water vapor is a greenhouse gas doesn't mean that humans aren't causing global warming. Far from it. Water vapor is just a magnifier of human activity, and is the reason why relatively small increases in CO2 in the atmosphere are having such a huge effect on global temperatures.

In short, this article == full of shit.

*just* like the second law of thermodynamics... (2, Insightful)

everphilski (877346) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085442)

... in laymens terms:

YOU CAN'T WIN

so sit back an enjoy the ride. Be true to yourself. Do what you need to do to sleep at night, and dont give a f*ck about what they say about global warming. Its been hot, its been cold, and we only have accurate weather data spanning about 100 years. If you think we can make accurate preditions based on 100 years of data (a piss in the bucket compared to the thousands or millions or billions of years this world has been in existance, depending on who you asked) then I have oceanfront property to sell you in Wisconsin, which was very cold last winter.

This is what I love about climate change... (0)

Skyshadow (508) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085514)

How many other instances exist where scientists can identify the mechanism of a large-scale change, explain it, model it, have their predictions borne out, reach almost universal agreement in the scientific community and still have a large number of people yelling "That's unpossible!"?

Re:*just* like the second law of thermodynamics... (1)

Moby Cock (771358) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085516)

I have oceanfront property to sell you in Wisconsin

Did you buy it on the Future's Market?

Re:*just* like the second law of thermodynamics... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15085688)

To be covered next week: Living Leads to Death, Eventually

Re:*just* like the second law of thermodynamics... (2, Informative)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085731)

What an amazingly short-sighted view you have! If you're right, I suppose that means I should just go step out back and burn some plastic.

Even if you don't believe in a human contribution to global warming (hint: even the bush administration is admitting a link now, although they seem to think we shouldn't do anything about it) you must realize that things are getting worse for the humans. The majority of our oxygen comes from oceanic algae (the rainforest consumes almost as much oxygen in decomposition as it produces in the first place) and we're killing it off. When CO2 levels rise, bad things happen to all animals, but we don't seem to be capable of significantly checking our CO2 production.

One very simple principle of successful existence is that you don't shit where you eat. We're breaking that rule, and we're suffering for it, whether global warming is real or not. Which it probably is. All inputs cause output. We're creating a great deal of input. You really think that's not going to make anything happen? We put out something like 50 times more CO2 per year than all the world's volcanoes put together...

face it, we're powerless (1)

b17bmbr (608864) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085451)

we cannot affect the earth's climate. we can pollute it, clean it up, do what we please, and we havent' the power to alter it. an ice began in the early 14th century and lasted until the 19th. it wasn't started because of man, it didn't end because of man. the earth is warming (or so some claim) on its own, and in time, will cool, again on its own. nothing we can do will stop it, slow it down, or reverse it.

Re:face it, we're powerless (1)

KermodeBear (738243) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085670)

Not only that, but suppose that humans DID have the capability to alter the Earth's atmosphere. Should they? I don't think so. Earth has been doing just fine for the past billion or so years. Is pollution bad, yes. Should it be reduced? Sure. Is it the main cause of global warming and cooling? I don't think so. I haven't seen enough (thorough, unbiased, non-political) evidence to convince me otherwise.

That is, of course, the other problem with this whole Global Warming issue. It is no longer a scientific one; It's a political one. It's hard to trust any information anymore because so many people DO have some sort of agenda.

Sync our activity with the Sun's? (1)

pgfault (796282) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085464)

Let's complicate this a bit further. The solar output is not constant. In times of increased sunspot activity the solar output is slightly higher, and the effect is felt on Earth. So, if we're going to clean up or pollute more, we should get the approval from Helios first.

Scientists Blame The Sun For Global Warming [bbc.co.uk]

Heh (3, Funny)

Moby Cock (771358) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085465)

Is it time to set off a few nukes and see if nuclear winter can cool things down?

I nominate Idaho for Nuclear Whipping Boy

Re:Heh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15085626)

I nominate you.

nothing to joke about (-1, Troll)

Netmonger (3253) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085473)

Clean air isnt the main culprit here - its the burning of fossile fuels, methane about by livestock, deforestation, etc..

Dont give the naysayers anything they can possible use here to slow down global warming efforts - this is a big deal people and it ought to be taken seriously by everyone.

Your comment about 'setting off nukes' is entirely inappropriate.

We're talking about the future of the human race - the world my daughter has to live in.

I, for one, dont appreciate the jest.

the real answer: "It Depends" (1, Flamebait)

Tumbleweed (3706) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085481)

Look - while the Bush Administration may think Global Warming isn't happening, it's pretty obvious it is. BUT, the scientific debate about what's causing it, and how much of that causation is manmade still goes on. The Earth has cycles of its own, and we seem to be caught at a time when it would be warming up, anyway (and also getting drier in certain parts, unfortunately for those of us who depend on hydropower for cheap electricity).

The important part of the debate -- for me -- isn't so much global warming - I doubt we can do anything about it - but is more about a CLEAN environment. Less toxins = shiny happy goodness. If we emit fewer greenhouse gases at the same time, hey, bueno, but I'm far more concerned about toxins in the environment at this point.

Besides, I've got my eye on some land in Nevada that would be _great_ beachfront property. Yeah...kickin' it Lex Luthor style!

Also, melted polar caps will be fantastic for the mapmaking business. Won't anyone think of the mapmakers?

Clearly affecting global warming is the wrong goal (3, Insightful)

susano_otter (123650) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085488)

I say we carry on as before. Clean up the environment, sure, but for more immediate reasons of beauty and health: nobody likes to walk a littered beach, or suck down the smoggy L.A. air, after all.

In the 70s, scientists were absolutely convinced that they'd mastered the complex climate change models, and confidently assured us all that an Ice Age was imminent.

Nowadays, global warming is the new scientific fad. And not only does it appear that global warming is much greater in scope than any amount of anthropogenic factors can account for, it also appears that there's not much we can do about it anyway.

On top of all that, I suspect that the smarty men, for all their expert and well-intentioned efforts, still haven't mastered the climate change models to the extent some of us would like to think.

So I say we carry on as always: sometimes building, sometimes tearing down. Sometimes exploiting, sometimes preserving. Sometimes making a mess, sometimes cleaning it up. And always refining and improving our methods and priorities, not based on the current socio-scientific fads, but based rather on the traditional motivations: the ebb and flow of human desire, expressed individually and collectively by various means.

I mean, if we don't even properly understand climate change, and can have only a measurable but insignificant effect on it, then how can we possibly make good decisions about what sacrifices to make and what goals to pursue in relation to climate change?

There are plenty of other more sensible, more practical, and more meaningful reasons to change some of our behaviors. I, for one, would like to see more arguments for ecological responsibility based on those, and less arguments based on voodoo climatology.

Re:Clearly affecting global warming is the wrong g (4, Informative)

hawkfish (8978) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085560)

In the 70s, scientists were absolutely convinced that they'd mastered the complex climate change models, and confidently assured us all that an Ice Age was imminent.
No they didn't [realclimate.org] .
And not only does it appear that global warming is much greater in scope than any amount of anthropogenic factors can account for
No it isn't [realclimate.org] .
it also appears that there's not much we can do about it anyway.
If we can cause the problem, we can fix it. The only question is, will we?

Sounds familiar (1)

secondsun (195377) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085491)

Is it time to set off a few nukes and see if nuclear winter can cool things down?

Wasn't this the plot of the Dinosaurs series finale?

Build better filters (1)

Helmholtz (2715) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085520)

Seems to me the best route would be to build very large (i.e. scalable) radiation filters that can also insulate. Eventually, farms will only exist inside massive greenhouse like enclosures, and people will spend very little time in the real outside. Even "outside" will actually be "inside". Perhaps the technology developed in helping us live on our current planet would help create side effect technologies that would help us live in less friendly environment, such as the moon or mars.

Not to mention that the first generation of people that only knew life "inside of the bubble" would also be better adapted for living in the same kind of environment on other planets.

I think the sooner people consider global warming as something that's inevitable and start working on creating ways to live in the new environment, instead of trying to put more pennies on the track in hopes of derailing the approaching juggernaut, the better off we'll all be.

Just my 2c.

nuclear winter (1)

syrinx (106469) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085530)

I'm fairly sure the "nuclear winter" thing was "proven" (as much as it could be without, you know, testing it) to not really happen. Can't find anything about it at the moment, so maybe I'm making that up. Still, even that might not save you. :P

Nonetheless, geologically speaking we're not quite out of an ice age yet, so it's to be expected that things are warming. As far as the planet is concerned, things like "snow" in the Northern Hemisphere anywhere south of extreme northern Canada are just part of a temporary phase it's going through. Just because we've gotten used to it like this doesn't mean that Earth cares about us. :P

And to think I was gonna buy a hybrid. (1)

CausticPuppy (82139) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085531)

On this news, I have changed my mind... I think it's better to buy that Escalade, and reprogram the fuel mixture to run rich all the time. For the good of the planet.

solar flares, friends (1)

herbiesdad (909590) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085532)

it's all solar flares. the rest of "global warming" literature is academics trying to get published / make a name for themselves. if you can't predict the weather for tomorrow with 100% certainty you can't begin to predict global weather 30 years into the future.

People who worry less live longer (1, Flamebait)

digitaldc (879047) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085533)

Don't worry about ANYTHING ANYMORE! Not the environment, not the government, and not the virii.
Trust me, you will live a happier, longer life.

Equally fanatical conviction (1)

amightywind (691887) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085576)

Burn fossil fuels, you make things worse. Clean up your act, and you make things worse.

Kyotoists state both the reasonable and ridiculous with equally fanatical conviction. Truth is not their goal but the rejection of modern consumerism. Ask yourself is such people should have influence over global politics and economy.

Water Vapor causing global warming. (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15085583)

About seven years ago, I was reading an astronomy magazine that discussed the effect of increased solar output on the environment. The helio physicist in the magazine said the effect would depend on the response of the strong greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere. The most significant gas he was most concerned about was water. He wasn't much concerned about any of the other gasses.
When you look at it, water vapor is far more powerful than CO2 and far more plentiful.
Maybe it is time we look at the effect irigation has on the environment. We might (or might not) be able to substantially reduce global warming by banning lawn sprinklers. It would be truly ironic if our quest for a green lawn, using grasses that only seem to survive natively in England and Kentucky, were the cause of global warming.

Maybe it was going to happen anyway... (1)

XxtraLarGe (551297) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085640)

Let's see. Scientists seem to have a pretty good idea that heating and cooling of the planet has been cyclical, even before man burned his first lump of coal. Why is it surprising to anybody now? We blame farting cows and SUV's, maybe this would have just happened from forest fires, pine trees and volcanoes?

Thats because water vapor is a greenhouse gas. (4, Informative)

code shady (637051) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085641)

No, really, it is.

Each gas that comprises the atmosphere has the capability to act as a greenhouse gas, and each one blocks different wavelengths of infared radiation. Some of then trap it when the sunlight passes through the atmosphere, some of them capture it when the radiation bounces off the earths surface back into the atmosphere.

C02, Methane, and *gasp* water vapor all contribute to heat retention in the atmosphere. It's basic Geography 101 shit that everyone learns.

However, since water vapor is, you know, an integral part of the atmosphere and several cycles on earth, we really can't do much about that. Better to worry about all the other gasses we up dump into the atmosphere that we can control.

BUsh keeps their mother (-1, Troll)

1ooser (769343) | more than 8 years ago | (#15085643)

Bush keeps their mothers in Guantanomo Bay to make them say that.

RTFA (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15085678)

Yup, editors do need to do a better job. TFA only says that both burning fossil fuels and burning "clean" fuels increase global warming. now where in the article "cleaning up" is mentioned. switching to cleaner fuels will not solve the GW problem. it will only solve the pollution (toxins in the air) problem.
with fossil fuels the particulate matter was blocking some of the energy coming to earth. cleaner fuels will in fact increase global warming because more energy reaches the earth and lesser escapes (CO2 + H2O).

The solution would be to collect CO2 and H2O from vehicles instead of releasing them and reusing them elsewhere. we have millions of uses for DHMO but still have to figure out how to manage all the CO2 that is produced.

mod d0Wn (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15085712)

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