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The Carbon Flame War
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dan mchale
(wildlife) - MLife

Locale: Cascadia
new on 08/09/2012 11:37:28 MDT Print View

The actual discovery of undersea venting does not have to be at odds with the estimates and modeling of same that have been made. It does not surprise me that we are able to study more what we have predicted is already down there. You always want it to be so much more. Show peer reveiwed studies Rog, showing that there has been so much new volcanic activity discovery that the accepted value that humans emit 100 times more co2 than volcanoes needs to be modified. I would say that it is statiscally improbable that scientists have underestimated worldwide volcanic activity by a factor of 100.

It's probably like those hard rock lava beds that suddenly starting gasing the planet with CO2 the last hundred years.

Edited by wildlife on 08/09/2012 11:54:00 MDT.

Craig Savage
(tremelo) - F

Locale: San Jacinto Mountains
The Carbon Flame War on 08/09/2012 17:50:19 MDT Print View

ugh, if only my pops wasn't so consumed by life to post about our resident propagandist (patience, I have not - pyeyo should be the next dalai lama)

AND, someone paid Dan's 'script before I could? Ohjah wells, purdy sure 4chan has some people interested in this flavor of fun

Robert Blean
(blean) - MLife

Locale: San Jose -- too far from Sierras
Discovering new CO2 or methane sources on 08/09/2012 18:07:24 MDT Print View

I do not understand the issue -- they have always been there, we just did not know as much about them as we are now finding out.

Even many (most?) skeptics agree the earth has been warming more than in the past -- the question they raise is whether that is man-made or whether it is due to natural causes.

The newly-discovered natural sources have presumably always been there, even before the increasing warming. We just did not know as much about them. I do not see how they are related to accelerating CO2 unless those natural sources are themselves accelerating as well -- something I have not seen anyone try to claim.

Rog Tallbloke
(tallbloke) - F

Locale: DON'T LOOK DOWN!!
Re: Discovering new CO2 or methane sources on 08/13/2012 02:47:39 MDT Print View

Hi Bob,

Thanks for your comment. I've explained to Dan a few times that I'm not saying the newly discovered facts about volcanic emissions mean the extra co2 is "new". Rather, they change our understanding of the size of the human contribution to the carbon cycle, which is a lot smaller than we thought it was. This means the recent increase in airborne co2 from 0.027% of the atmosphere to 0.039% of the atmosphere may not be solely due to mankind's activities after all. The question of how much such an increase in the trace gas co2 might affect the surface temperature of the planet is a separate issue, which we can go into later.

You said:
"Even many (most?) skeptics agree the earth has been warming more than in the past."

That depends low long into the past you are talking about. There is plenty of solid evidence that the warmest point since the last ice age was in the late Stone Age - early Bronze Age seven thousand years ago. Since then the Earth's surface temperature seems to have meandered up and down on a gently falling trajectory through the Micaenian, Roman, Medieval and modern warm periods, with the cooler dark ages and little ice age in between.

Archaeological evidence shows that is was warmer in the northern hemisphere during these earlier periods than now. The Romans grew wine grapes by Hadrians wall in the north of England. Not possible any more. The Vikings gave up trying to farm on Greenland in 1400.

There is an average 974 year cycle involved in the ups and downs of Earth's surface temperature which may be connected with a cycle of angular momentum exchange within the Solar-Planetary system. Or perhaps since the major climate oscillation of the post glacial warmth, we are seeing a set of decaying oscillations as we meander downwards towards the next glacial period.

There again, ices ages end eventually and then the global surface temperature might climb 6-8C or so to the ~20-22 average it has spent the majority of the last 500 million years at.

Nobody knows what will happen or when it will happen, because we still don't know what causes ice ages. Having said that, the work of Milankovitch on orbital cycles and Svensmarks recent work on the passage of the solar system through the spiral arms of the galaxy might turn out to be correct. To me, they seem more plausible as a cause than changes in co2 which happen 800-2800 years AFTER the changes in temperature. Causes PRECEDE effects, as any fule knows.

The vast natural forces which shape these climatic changes are still poorly understood. I'm trying to make progress with the solar system dynamics side of the issue. Natural variation and cyclic change has brought about these climate changes in the past, and I doubt Nature suddenly lost the capability when mankind started getting more industrious.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Discovering new CO2 or methane sources on 08/13/2012 06:27:46 MDT Print View

I agree totally Rog - we know little about climate change over 100s of years.

If we don't know what causes ice ages, then how do we know any slight climate changes we've observed are due to this unknown, or to increased CO2.

Glad to see you ackowledge that some increase of CO2 is due to burning fossil fuels and that we don't know what the effect will be on the climate.

Since we don't know what the effect will be, and we're running out of fossil fuel anyway, we should use it carefully - improve efficiency, use solar/wind/geo power where possible and develop this further while we still have a lot of fossil fuel.

Rog Tallbloke
(tallbloke) - F

Locale: DON'T LOOK DOWN!!
Re: Re: Discovering new CO2 or methane sources on 08/13/2012 12:03:28 MDT Print View

Hi Jerry,

You said:
If we don't know what causes ice ages, then how do we know any slight climate changes we've observed are due to this unknown, or to increased CO2.

Because the changes in the co2 levels occur *AFTER* THE CHANGES IN TEMPERATURE.

Can't put it any simpler than that really.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Discovering new CO2 or methane sources on 08/13/2012 17:25:49 MDT Print View

Changes on CO2 level occurs after changes in temperature

During the 800,000 year period we have ice core data for

But there was no huge input of CO2 from burning CO2 during this period


Two effects here - I know this is complicated:

1 - Increasing temperature causes CO2 level to increase because oceans absorb less CO2 so there's more in the atmosphere - this is based on ice core data over last 800,00 years and theory

2 - Increased CO2 causes temperature increase due to greenhouse effect. This is based on scientific experiments and theory, not on ice core history


So, that means the global warming caused by burning fossil fuels will be amplified, only with a time delay - this is called positive feedback

Rog Tallbloke
(tallbloke) - F

Locale: DON'T LOOK DOWN!!
Re: Re: Discovering new CO2 or methane sources on 08/14/2012 02:38:42 MDT Print View

Hi Jerry,

1 - It's not just about less solubility of co2 in water at higher temperature. Higher temperature also speeds up release of co2 by decaying material, the breakdown of volcanic material into soil via increased woody biomass growth, and an unknown number of other processes. There are always two sides to the equation - emission and absorption.

2 - The positive feedback you mentioned usually refers to a theoretical claim that increased co2 will cause an increase in water vapour (a far more powerful and prevalent greenhouse gas). But this has not been observed in the real atmosphere. That indicates that the hydrological cycle has room for self regulation as temperature increases. A study of paleo data confirms this. If it wasn't true, then we would have had runaway positive water vapour feedback when co2 level were 20 times higher than now a five hundred million years ago and the ocean would have evaporated. It didn't, instead the was a huge expansion of life in the ocean called the Permian explosion.

The increase of temperature due to a doubling of co2 is theoretically around 1 degree Kelvin or ~2 degrees fahrenheit. So far, since the pre-industrial period, airborne co2 has risen around 40%. Because the response is logarithmic, we should already have seen most of the effect of the doubling - about 0.8K. However, the surface temperature has risen by around twice that amount since 1700. Therefore, at least half of the warming is the natural rebound from the little ice age.

All systems with negative feedbacks in them oscillate around a mean. A good example is the mechancal governor on an older engine. As the engine speeds up, the governor reacts to reduce the fuel or air supply. That makes the engine slow down, making the governor react by opening up the fuel or air supply. That makes the engine speed up again. Because there is always a lag in the system, you get the familiar 'hunting' effect.

Similarly, the Earth has a warming and cooling cycle of around 1000 years. This has been confirmed through paleo data and historical archaeological data. I think my research group has discovered the cause, but I'll leave that for another day. For now, it's enough to know that at least half the warming since 1700 has a natural cause. The cooling from the Medieval Warm Period to the depths of the Little Ice Age and the subsequent upturn to the Modern Warm Period represent a swing of around 1.5-1.8K.

Clearly, that natural warming has also helped to increase co2 in the air, so not all of the airborne increase is due to human activity and it could well be only around half. The western world crippling its economy by reducing co2 emission over a short timescale before we have developed alternative means of energy generation would therefore have very little effect on the planet's surface temperature. Especially considering the fact that much of our emissions are from agriculture not power generation anyway. There's not much we can do about that unless there is going to be a deliberate plan to compulsarily reduce population. Something I'm strongly against not on any religious principle, but on the principle of liberty, which I hold dear. I have no wish or need to submit myself to authoritarian control, and I think most people agree with me on that.

I agree with you that it's sensible to get on with the job of finding alternatives, but I strongly disagree that we need to be in a huge hurry doing it. In fact the greater the hurry, the more counter-productive the outcome, because we'd be less likely to make the critical technological breakthroughs living in a crippled economy.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Discovering new CO2 or methane sources on 08/14/2012 08:29:46 MDT Print View

Positive feedback - if it gets warmer, the feedback will make it warmer still.

Negative feedback - if it gets warmer, the feedback will reverse some of the increase.

In some feedback loops, it oscilates, and in some it doesn't. In some feedback loops it changes exponentially. In well designed engine regulator, it goes to a stable value.

Climate scientists are just beginning to understand all the feedbacks.

When the CO2 rises, it gets warmer, so the oceans release more CO2 - positive feedback

When the arctic warms, snow melts resulting in ocean or ground that absorbs more sunlight so it warms more - positive feedback.

Gets warmer over ocean, water evaporates producing clouds which reflect more sunlight so it gets cooler - negative feedback

Or ocean warms, more water evaporates into atmosphere which creates more greenhouse effect so it gets warmer still - positive feedback

If you follow climate science, they frequently identify some new feedback, like the effect of water vapor.

The July Scientific American has an article about Antarctic glacier melting. They say the oceans will rise 18 to 59 by 2100 but they think that as these ice shelves break up, they may release the glaciers behind them which could increase ocean rise 10 fold.

So, their estimate is a factor of 3 range, but as they identify new feedback, it could be a factor of 10 more. 88 years from now.

Real climate scientists acknowledge that this is very inexact and it'll be decades or even 100s of years.

Rog Tallbloke
(tallbloke) - F

Locale: DON'T LOOK DOWN!!
Re: Re: Discovering new CO2 or methane sources on 08/14/2012 13:35:26 MDT Print View

Hi Jerry,

You said:
When the CO2 rises, it gets warmer, so the oceans release more CO2 - positive feedback

But this is the wrong way round. When it gets warmer, co2 rises. This has been known for many years now since Lassen et al published their findings that rises in co2 in the ice cores lag behind increases in temperature by 800 - 2800 years when we move from glacial to interglacial and vise versa. Please try to get this right, I've written it in BLOCK CAPITALS for you a few times now. ;-)

You wrote:
When the arctic warms, snow melts resulting in ocean or ground that absorbs more sunlight so it warms more - positive feedback.

The decline in northern hemisphere snow and ice (the southern hemisphere's sea ice has been INCREASING over the last 30 years) is a fairly small percentage of the total and so this feedback is small in comparison with total albedo (nearly all clouds).

You wrote:
Or ocean warms, more water evaporates into atmosphere which creates more greenhouse effect so it gets warmer still - positive feedback

Tropical low cloud amount fell over the warming period from ~1980 to ~1998 according to ISCCP data and the Earthshine project which easures Earth's albedo by measuring the intensity of Earthlight falling on the Moon. This strongly suggests the real cause of the late C20th warming was increased insolation into the ocean. Positive cloud feedback is the AGW warmists wet dream but it can't happen, because the reduction in incoming sunlight is bigger compared to increased downwelling longwave radiation. Precipitation is pretty much unchanged. Changes in Humidity levels near the tropopause are controlled by the Sun's variation anyway.

You said:
They say the oceans will rise 18 to 59 by 2100 but they think that as these ice shelves break up, they may release the glaciers behind them which could increase ocean rise 10 fold.

More catastrophist nonsense fortunately. 18 to 59 is the number of CENTIMETRES the ocean is expected to rise by 2100. Canute would hardly get his hems wet. The Antarctic has been frozen solid at an average -50C or so for the last 24 MILLION years. Warming it by 1C is going to reduce that to -49C. Hardly a glacier slippage temperature. "Release the glaciers behind them". Lol.

I think you need to appreciate that in order to get further funding, the new generation of professional climate scientists have to provide research which 'has impact'. This involves saying something which will generate a press release which is newsworthy... "Antarctic still frozen solid" doesn't work you see.

Edited by tallbloke on 08/14/2012 13:46:43 MDT.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Discovering new CO2 or methane sources on 08/14/2012 20:49:40 MDT Print View

"But this is the wrong way round. When it gets warmer, co2 rises."

That's what I said "When the CO2 rises, it gets warmer, so the oceans release more CO2"

The thing is, during the artic ice core period of 800,000 yearsm there was never a huge release of CO2, like we're doing burning fossil fuels.

So, if the CO2 from burning fossil fuels warms things up which you don't acknowledge but climate scientists believe, then the oceans will release more CO2 which will warm things up even more - positive feedback.


The thing about melting antarctic galciers, is these huge ice shelves Larsen A, B, and C, Scar Inlet, etc. They have seen these break up from satelite photos and people going there before, during, and after. This doesn't cause sea level to rise, but they buttress glaciers behind them. They have measured these glaciers behind and they are now moving twice as fast, but it takes 10 or 20 years before you see the full effect.

Only a small or portion of Larsen C has broken up yet, but they've seen the same behavior as on Larsen A and B, so it's reasonable to believe C is next. Larsen C is much bigger and buttresses a much larger galcier.

So, it will take a few decades to see what the full effect is.

Go ahead and believe they're just making this all up to get grant money : )

The moon landings were also faked - actually done in a studio : )

Rog Tallbloke
(tallbloke) - F

Locale: DON'T LOOK DOWN!!
Re: Re: Discovering new CO2 or methane sources on 08/15/2012 00:53:56 MDT Print View

Hi Jerry,

You said:
That's what I said "When the CO2 rises, it gets warmer, so the oceans release more CO2"

Yes, that is what you've said. Several times. Repeating falsehoods doesn't make them correct though. The temperature rises before the concomitant rise in co2. And later co2 continues to rise for a while even as the temperature falls again. Only people very, very determined to cling on to their failed theory stubbornly continue to misinterpret the data, and cause and effect.

You said:
They have measured these glaciers behind and they are now moving twice as fast.

Can we have some figures in distance per year please. How fast were the glaciers moving before and after as measured by the researchers?

You said:
Go ahead and believe they're just making this all up to get grant money : )

It's subtler than that. The scientists are careful to avoid making stuff up, but write their papers in such a way that the people who write press releases and articles for Scientific American are able to cherry pick sentences which convey the preferred message. So in the present example there is a relative speed "twice as fast". But this tells us nothing unless we know the initial speed, which will be buried in another part of the original paper, which you didn't give the reference to, and which people reading Sci-Am won't bother to check up on for themselves.

In many cases you get a paper which actually indicates that the co2 driven climate theory is wrong, but in order to get the paper published in a journal which leans towards supporting the status quo, the scientists are obliged to put a mealy mouthed phrase like "not inconsistent with" in the conclusion which enables the paper to be published. Unless you have had training in 'reading between the lines' of such papers, you are left with the impression the scientists are supporting the AGW meme.

The pressure on scientists to avoid upsetting the gravy train is intense. Their departmental heads are answerable to the funding agencies. The funding agency chiefs are answerable to government bureaucracies, which are considering strategic policy more than scientific truth.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Re: Discovering new CO2 or methane sources on 08/15/2012 08:06:39 MDT Print View

"When the CO2 rises, IT GETS WARMER, SO THE OCEANS RELEASE MORE CO2"

We're saying the same thing and you're saying I'm lying. Weird world.

We disagree that the CO2 rising also causes warming - greenhouse effect, but sometimes you say that the effect is minimal which means you agree it happens but just at a minimal level.

It is complicated that warming causes increased CO2 AND increased CO2 causes warming. Reality is complicated. You can juggle two balls can't you?

Al Gore in his movie says that the ice core data shows that increasing CO2 causes warming, but you're right, this is incorrect, he has the order wrong. If he has this wrong, which is maybe his biggest point, then you wonder about the whole thing.


"They have measured these glaciers behind and they are now moving twice as fast.

Can we have some figures in distance per year please. How fast were the glaciers moving before and after as measured by the researchers?"

Scientific American is not a scientific journal, just a summary of mainstream science for non-scientists.

They said Pine Island Glacier has accelerated by 70 percent, one glacier continues to accelerate even 15 years after losing its ice shelf, and the 2007 IPCC estimates of 18 to 59 centimeters of sea-level rise by 2100 do not account for any of the ice shelf effects. It could be between 75 and 190 centimeters.

And they reference the scientific articles they were based on:
Glacier Surge after Ice Shelf Collapse. Hernán De Angelis and Pedro Skvarca in Science,
Vol. 299, pages 1560–1562; March 7, 2003.
Stability of the Larsen B Ice Shelf on the Antarctic Peninsula during the Holocene
Epoch. Eugene Domack et al. in Nature, Vol. 436, pages 681–
685; August 4, 2005.
Calving and Ice-Shelf Break-up Processes Investigated by Proxy: Antarctic Tabular
Iceberg Evolution during Northward Drift. T. Scambos et al. in Journal of Glaciology,
Vol. 54, No. 187, pages 579–591; December 2008.

Terry Trimble
(socal-nomad) - F

Locale: North San Diego county
The Carbon Flame War WHY? on 08/15/2012 10:50:02 MDT Print View

I have watched this flame war or feud go on since it started 3-29-2008 it has been going on for 4 years 5 months.

I ASK WHY?

The earth is getting hotter and going through a cycle compound by our human made smog and emission's that started when the industrial age started. It happened their is no way to stop or reverse it. We can slow it down if every country gets rid of all their emission causing machine. I don't see that happing so what is the point of the flame war.
Terry

Ps: This carbon Flame war has caused emissions to produce the electricity to store all this on the hard drives of the severs.

Edited by socal-nomad on 08/15/2012 10:52:54 MDT.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: The Carbon Flame War WHY? on 08/15/2012 11:09:04 MDT Print View

When they "swift boated" Kerry he didn't respond so people believed it

If someone says there's no reason to not burn fossil fuels like crazy, and it goes unanswered, maybe we'll burn more fossil fuel quicker?

We'll probably burn all the oil and natural gas we can produce but maybe we can leave some of the coal, shale, tar sands in the ground?

You're probably right - this thread is probably futile : )

Rog Tallbloke
(tallbloke) - F

Locale: DON'T LOOK DOWN!!
Re: Re: Re: Re: Discovering new CO2 or methane sources on 08/15/2012 14:16:42 MDT Print View

Hi Jerry,

I think you're making a misinterpretation rather than lying. I wouldn't ascribe to malice what can easily be explained as misunderstanding. Lets walk through it slowly and you can respond point by point.

1) At the end of the last glacial period the temperature started to rise, but co2 kept on falling.

2) The temperature continued to rise for around 1000 years before the co2 level started to rise.

3) In 1998 temperature reached a peak and has fallen since. Co2 continues to rise. We'll have to wait to see what happens next.

You said:
IPCC estimates of 18 to 59 centimeters of sea-level rise by 2100 do not account for any of the ice shelf effects. It could be between 75 and 190 centimeters.

I'll believe it when I see it. On past form the glacier will flow veeeery slowly outwards and form a new ice shelf.

Thanks for the citations.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Discovering new CO2 or methane sources on 08/15/2012 14:58:02 MDT Print View

Let's non-maliciously walk through it slowly : )

1) We burn fossil fuel raising CO2 level

2) Due to gtreenhouse effect, temperature rises. I think you acknowledge this, but only at a small level. Climate scientists thinks it will raise temperature by larger amount. We will see how much. Let's just assume the temperature rises.

3) Now, due to the effect that's seen in the ice cores, since the temperature rises, the CO2 rises even more

4) This raises the temperature even more - ad infinitum

This is positive feedback

Example - let's just say that raising the CO2 100 PPM will raise the temperature 5 degrees due to greenhouse effect. And let's just say that raising temperature 5 degrees raises CO2 50 PPM from oceans releasing CO2. Which would raise the temperature another 2.5 degrees, which would increase CO2 25 PPM,... Then the total amount of CO2 in the atmosphere and the total temperature rise will be twice what it would have been with just the fossil fuel burning. 1 + 1/2 + 1/4 + 1/8 + ... = 2

Rog Tallbloke
(tallbloke) - F

Locale: DON'T LOOK DOWN!!
Re: Re: Discovering new CO2 or methane sources on 08/15/2012 15:06:03 MDT Print View

Hi Jerry,

You said:
3) Now, due to the effect that's seen in the ice cores, since the temperature rises, the CO2 rises even more
4) This raises the temperature even more - ad infinitum
This is positive feedback

If this was correct, the temperature wouldn't start to fall into the following glacial period a thousand years BEFORE co2 falls, as the ice cores show us happening every 100,000 years for the last 800,000 years.

There is nearly a million years of evidence saying you are wrong about this.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Re: Discovering new CO2 or methane sources on 08/15/2012 15:33:25 MDT Print View

When you look at ice core data, at the end of an ice age, the temperature rises maybe 10 degree C over 5000 years. The CO2 in the atmosphere rises 100 PPM over 5000 years but it's delayed by 1000 years.

Let's say something happens that would cause the temperature to rise 5 degrees, like a change in the angle of rotation of the earth, or the orbit around sun becomes more eliptical, or the amount of heat from sun changes on a cyclical pattern.

And lets say it takes 1000 years to heat up the ocean, which would release some CO2 into the atmosphere. That would raise the temperature some more due to greenhouse effect (I know you don't agree with this). This would increase the CO2 even more. It would take a few 1000 years for this to play out.

This would be consistent with the ice core data.

In total, the heating of the atmosphere would be twice as much because of the positive feedback from CO2 being absorbed in the ocean.

Rog Tallbloke
(tallbloke) - F

Locale: DON'T LOOK DOWN!!
Re: Re: Re: Re: Discovering new CO2 or methane sources on 08/15/2012 16:27:17 MDT Print View

Hi Jerry,

Good that you've considered the Milankovitch cycles, they do play a role in the coming and going of ice ages. The problem is, no-one knows hows to quantify them in terms of how much warmer and cooler they make Earth's surface.

They may account for all the change in T or just part of it. They may be amplified by changes in cloud cover. Nobody knows.

You said:
And lets say it takes 1000 years to heat up the ocean, which would release some CO2 into the atmosphere. That would raise the temperature some more due to greenhouse effect (I know you don't agree with this).

What I don't agree with is extrapolating tests done in lab bell jars to the Earth's atmosphere, which as you have noted, has all sorts of feedbacks in it. Co2 change may affect temperature, or not. Once again, nobody knows.

In this cloud of unknowing, the null hypothesis that temperature change is a result of natural phenomena holds until proven otherwise.

A thought for you to consider. If there is a greenhouse effect in the atmosphere due to shortwave radiation from the Sun getting in easier than longwave radiation from the surface can get out, then the same is true of the ocean, but more so. Sunlight penetrates 100m or more into the ocean and heats the water. But water is nearly opaque to longwave radiation, so the ocean has a hard time getting rid of heat back to space via the atmosphere. In order to radiate more effectively, so it can be in thermal equilibrium, it must rise in temperature.

Most of the 'greenhouse effect' is actually in the ocean, not the atmosphere. Water has a vastly higher heat capacity than air, and the oceans have vastly higher total mass than the atmosphere. The oceans giving off heat is what keeps the air near the sea warm at night compared to up in the mountains. But to get rid of as much heat at night as they gain from the Sun during the day, the oceans have to be at an average ~289K, which is around 2C warmer than the average air temperature.

Think about it.