Thursday, October 16, 2008

Hysteria is in the Eye of the Beholder

Try if you will to make sense of this:
While a few of Alaska's large glaciers are advancing, 99 percent are retreating, the book, "Glaciers in Alaska," states. The book was written by USGS research geologist Bruce Molina.
In combination with this:
Never before in the history of a research project dating back to 1946 had the Juneau Icefield witnessed the kind of snow buildup that came this year. It was similar on a lot of other glaciers too.

"It's been a long time on most glaciers where they've actually had positive mass balance," Molnia said.
And finally...this:
Permafrost continues to warm, however the rate of warming in the 2000s is significantly slower than in the 1990s. There is a continued tendency for a decrease in the snow cover of the Northern Hemisphere in the months of April through October. Glaciers are shrinking in most of the world. The amount of river discharge to the Arctic Ocean is increasing.
Is it any wonder Palin said she's not sure global warming is 100 percent mad-made? Mere men can't even fully explain it.

4 comments:

Mustang said...

I'm not surprised. I find her candor refreshing. It is a trait that causes me to have confidence in her ability to serve the American people in high office.

A.C. McCloud said...

Agreed, but I still think her experience level could be higher considering the office.

At the same time Joe has plenty, most of it seemingly going for naught. And potatoe, hell, he doesn't even know how many letters are in the word jobs!

TC said...

I'm impressed by the way you're extending yourself to justify one of the worst VP candidates in recent memory.

First, Palin's quotes didn't address the issues of whether global warming was "100% man-made" as you stated.

Instead, she's stated publicly that she doesn't think man is causing them at all:

"A changing environment will affect Alaska more than any other state, because of our location. I'm not one though who would attribute it to being man-made,” Palin said in the interview..."

She has no basis for that belief beyond wanting it to be so, and even the flaming liberals in the George Bush Administration and the Pentagon believe climate change is almost wholly manmade.

This is almost embarrassing.

As for your carefully culled quotes, looking at the rest of your sources makes it clear it's not hard for a "mere thinking man" to gain a little clarity on the subject (if he wasn't too busy trying to deny it).

For example, a couple paragraphs down the page after your "99% quote" comes:

"The report also said that glaciers in Alaska saw "significant retreat" in the last two decades of the 20th century.

Glaciers at lower elevations have been hit particularly hard: More than 95 percent of the glaciers that end below an elevation of about 4,900 feet (1,500 meters) are retreating and thinning. (The glaciers that have advanced are all at higher elevations, where it is colder.)"

That fits most climate change models, which call for increased precipitation in some areas, and as long as the altitude is high enough to freeze, those glaciers could actually gain something, though they typicall get thicker and shorter at the same time - not exactly "growth" for purposes of denying global warming.

Of course, none of your quotes really even address the cause of climate change, rendering your whole Palin post largely moot; the science behind the cause of the warming really isn't much in doubt any more (thought the ultimate extent of the effect is still very much in question).

Fortunately, a majority of the population isn't yet interested in choosing to mistake Palin's willfull ignorance for candor.

A.C. McCloud said...

Firstly, Gov Palin's denial that man is 100 pct behind all climate change shows she is a thinking woman, meaning she might already have one up on you, tc. No reputable scientist worth their salt would attribute ALL climate changes to mankind. Silly.

That fits most climate change models, which call for increased precipitation in some areas, and as long as the altitude is high enough to freeze, those glaciers could actually gain something, though they typicall get thicker and shorter at the same time - not exactly "growth" for purposes of denying global warming.

It may fit some models but it does not fit the hype. They've been crowing about Killamanjaro losing it's pack for years. If you noticed, the man in this article was stunned at the low altitude of the new accumulation. BTW, Antarctica was not predicted well by the models, which has been gaining ice/snow due to increased precip, which in turn has caused some record cold across the southern hemisphere the past few years.

That my good sir is called a "feedback mechanism" and is not well understood by either the models or the scientists.

Of course, none of your quotes really even address the cause of climate change, rendering your whole Palin post largely moot; the science behind the cause of the warming really isn't much in doubt any more (thought the ultimate extent of the effect is still very much in question).

The science is only settled for those with theories and reputation and grants on the line. Others are being shouted down, which is very unscientific (but in a way, it's not based on history).

Sure, there is some contribution from man that we can easily prove such as the "urban heat island effect". But the science is only as good as the measurements, and the world doesn't have a very long history of precise measurements. Kinda hard to base precise decisions that will affect global economies on proxy data. Try that one in this economy and see how far you get.

Of course certain politicians stand to gain much from scaremongering people into reactions to problems mankind really has no hope of demonstrably changing in the next 80 years (check out CO2 half-life when you get a chance) but it sure does make some people feel warm and fuzzy about their own abilities, I suppose.

Fortunately, a majority of the population isn't yet interested in choosing to mistake Palin's willfull ignorance for candor.

Yet the same majority is willfully willing to take a junior Senator who's spent his entire Senate career running for president our next president, essentially because he's black. But such is Main Street.

But I am amused at your derision of Palin while ignoring the walking, talking verbal train wreck that is Joe Biden. Let's see, is B I D E N four words or five? So hard to say..