Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Cancun made progress; so did global warming

As Bill McKibben puts it in this eloquent post, physics and chemistry don't negotiate. Yeah, they made good "progress" in Cancun, but that doesn't mean that Global Warming gave an avuncular nod and said "Hey, you did such a good job, we'll just slow the process down for a decade or so and give your compromise time to work."

McKibben's contention is that we already live on a different planet ("Eaarth" - the title of his new book). Here's why:

"As of January 2008, our best climatologists gave us a number for how much carbon in the atmosphere is too much. At concentrations above 350 parts per million (ppm), a NASA team insisted, we can’t have a planet “similar to the one on which civilization developed and to which life on earth is adapted.” We’re already past that; we’re at 390 ppm. Which is why 2010 will be the warmest year on record, almost a degree Celsius above the planet’s natural average, according to federal researchers. Which is why the Arctic melted again this summer, and Russia caught fire, and Pakistan drowned."

Read the rest of his post here.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Global Warming Models underestimate warming

From New Scientist magazine:
NARWHALS packing temperature and depth gauges connected to satellite transmitters have revealed that climatology models used for the Baffin bay region - which links the Atlantic and Arctic oceans - underestimate winter ocean temperatures there by as much as 1 °C. The measurements show that earlier warming between Greenland and north-east Canada's Baffin Island has continued over the past decade.

The Arctic mammals, known as "sea unicorns" because of their single long tusks, have provided the best winter temperature measurements yet for this biologically important part of the Arctic Ocean. These add to a body of evidence showing that ocean temperatures around the world are rising.

The measurements also suggest that the layer of water, or isotherm, that shields sea ice from the warmer waters below is thinner than predicted by the climatology models, according to Kristin Laidre of the Polar Science Center at Washington University in Seattle and colleagues. A thinner isotherm allows faster turnover of warmer waters from below, making the ice melt faster (Journal of Geophysical Research, DOI: 10.1029/2009JC005820).
Read the article here: Arctic narwhals reveal climate-model errors - environment - 29 October 2010 - New Scientist

Monday, July 12, 2010

Monday, July 5, 2010

US not a leader of the green world

Valerie Jaffee of NRDC has filed a post that laments the distance between our United States and the rest of the industrial world in promoting green energy. Everyone and their sister understands that this is the growth industry of the present (NOT the future) - and that even if we didn't believe in global warming, hey! we DO believe in capitalism. So why aren't we leading the charge?

A great (and non-political) read - catch it here!

Scoring a Goal for Clean Energy

Scoring a Goal for Clean Energy