Stoaty wrote:It isn't the government scaremongering, Obama has barely mentioned climate change and done little to address the problem. It is the climate scientists, a normally staid group, who are getting increasingly freaked out by the data and projections (and the fact that most of the projections so far have turned out to be way too conservative).
Big government is who funds climate research, and by doing so, they control the agenda. Like it or not, a lot of science gets distorted by who holds the pursestrings. So if big business funds a site showing research (mostly government research) that contradicts the party line, the site is deemed unreliable, but if big government funds the research, it is the Gospel?
Stoaty wrote:Sorry, the U.S. supreme court took up this issue and said that the EPA can regulate CO2 as a pollutant. Of course, if you simply want to go by your own opinion (rather than the law of the land) that's a different story entirely.
It's not the first, nor will it be the last, time that the supreme court has interpeted the powers of the Federal govenment to be far beyond what I think the founding fathers intended when they enumerated the powers for our govenment. I don't have to like or agree with that, but fortunately, I still can speak against it.
Stoaty wrote:I think that is a major reason why many people can't accept climate change--the steps necessary to combat it will of necessity place some limits on these "freedoms".
This is the kind of thinking that bothers me. When government is able to convince enough people that things are so bad that we need our rights taken away, that is the day that we will lose the freedoms so many have worked so hard to attain.
Stoaty wrote:Unfortunately, you can't argue with physics.
You certainly can, but we'll save that for another time.
But seriously, the science is extremely complex, and when scientists test their climate models to see if they can predict what has happened the past couple of years, the models do not get the correct answers! So while I agree that is a good way to refine the models, I must also conclude that the models have a very limited capability to predict our world's climate many decades in the future. Frankly, the predictions could be horribly wrong.
Yesterday's discussion about food supply is but one example. Several here have stated things like "The problem is, there aren't any benefits of increased atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations...", etc. But such statements are directly refuted by recent and broad-reaching research, as previously pointed out:
Overall, crops benefit from elevated CO2 by improving water productivity (+23% for biomass production and +27% for yield production), which is achieved through production increases in biomass (+15% for aboveground biomass) and yield (+16%), in combination with a decrease in seasonal evapotranspiration(-5%).
That quote comes from researchers at Leuven University, which is a very respected research university in Europe.
If you combine this fact with the knowledge that food crop production is now at the highest levels ever, it seems clear that the increases in global CO2 and temperature are not yet having the effects predicted for our food supply.
The point is that it appears that a very important negative feedback effect on both CO2 and temperature is being downplayed, if not outright denied, by those creating the models. There are many, many papers showing the growth rates of many of the plant species on the earth are accelerating in the face of higher tempraures and CO2 levels. It seems like climate scientists are focused on discussing positive feedback mechanisms, but are they giving proper due to this extremely significant negative feedback mechanism? It doesn't appear so, since when it is discussed in the media, it is dismissed as "sixth-grade science".
So, is this negative feedback of accelerated plant growth that is occurring all over the world enough to stem the effects of warming? I don't know. But the public outcry by many at the mere mention of the existence of this negative feedback mechanism by those who are supposed to be modeling the future climate leads to the obvious conclusion (rightly or wrongly) that they may be overpredicting the overall effects of the ongoing warming event.
OTOH, if the mention of this feedback effect were discussed in a manner that acknowledged the current literature and data and showed how it fits within the models, then I think it would be much easier to accept the conclusions being made.