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Do you think the debate about climate change is still a debate?

Comments

  • jlljll Veteran
    insightful comment, i just wonder what it will take
    to change the minds of the people who still thinks that we
    can continue to have world population growth and economic
    growth without seriously hurting our quality of life.
  • vinlynvinlyn Colorado...for now Veteran
    I think the problem is that any specific event can be explained by naturally occurring patterns. It's only when you begin to link the events together that you begin to see the abnormal patterns.
    riverflow
  • personperson Where is my mind? 'Merica! Veteran
    edited July 2013
    A couple points I'd like to make on the topic.

    1) People will often use the current weather as an argument for or against climate change. The daily weather is like what a baseball player hits for one game (1 for 5, 2 for 4, etc.). The climate is more like that players season or even career batting average (.271, .339, what have you).

    2) If there were no greenhouse effect from our atmosphere the temperature of the earth would be -18 C. It's only because certain gases in the atmosphere absorb heat and then radiate some of that back into the air that the planet isn't frozen over. Greenhouse gases have greatly increased over the past several decades due to human activity, to think that this has no effect on global temperatures seems ridiculous to me.

    image
  • What do you suggest be done about it?
  • person said:
    Good luck getting the biggest offenders to play along.
    Just for conversation, what do you suppose caused the globe to warm last time, when we came out of the ice age? What caused it to go into the ice age before that? What was causing our climate change before we came along?
  • karastikarasti Breathing Minnesota Veteran
    Climate change, yes, I think it's real. The changes have been visible even within the last 30 years where I live, affecting wildlife, lake levels and all sorts of things.
    Up for debate-exactly how much of it we can blame humans for and how much of it is natural cycles of the earth.

    I do my best to be as respectful as possible of the planet and to do whatever I can to take proper care of it. But regardless of the reasons for climate change, I don't think we are as powerful as we want to believe to stop it. At least some of it is simply normal cycles of the planet, and to think we can assume to slow or stop that, is silliness. All the talk of fixing climate change comes from our fear of death and very, very little in actually caring about the planet and the other beings on it. (as a general overview).

    As far as the human component contributing, I think it's hard to believe that as many people as we have, we aren't impacting the planet. but I think it's possible all our interventions thinking we know best for nature, aren't really best for nature. We have far too many people for the planet to support long-term, the carrying capacity isn't great enough and the renewable resources don't renew fast enough (and those that do, our governments and the big corporations won't allow anyone to utilize them thanks to the profit of our current system.) So, I'm not convinced in any way that humans can contribute majorly at this point to slowing climate change. The small # of people who really care and are trying, aren't making near enough of an impact. My taking a 5 minute shower instead of a 15 minute shower is not going to have any impact at all on the billions of gallons of water used every day by mining and mass farming. And so on, for any other resource.
    riverflow
  • personperson Where is my mind? 'Merica! Veteran

    person said:
    Good luck getting the biggest offenders to play along.
    Just for conversation, what do you suppose caused the globe to warm last time, when we came out of the ice age? What caused it to go into the ice age before that? What was causing our climate change before we came along?
    I agree that making effective change happen on the scale needed is close to impossible against the moneyed interests, though there are efforts that actually make more sense economically.

    As to what caused other warming and cooling periods, there are plenty of natural causes for climate to change, the sun's output, the earth's reflectivity. I'll just refer you back to point number 2, the greenhouse effect that we need to live on the planet and how it works.
    2) If there were no greenhouse effect from our atmosphere the temperature of the earth would be -18 C. It's only because certain gases in the atmosphere absorb heat and then radiate some of that back into the air that the planet isn't frozen over. Greenhouse gases have greatly increased over the past several decades due to human activity, to think that this has no effect on global temperatures seems ridiculous to me.

    riverflow
  • Omar067Omar067 Veteran
    Everything will be fine when it turns winter.
    mfranzdorf
  • @karasti nail on the head girl! IMO, of course ;)
  • Omar067 said:

    Everything will be fine when it turns winter.

    That's when global warming becomes climate change. We understand basically nothing as humans I believe. Lots of theories. Our very existence is a total mystery, but somehow we know all about how this place works. Bunk!
  • It's only a debate because of the people who have a vested interest in the status quo (oil companies, coal companies, and the politicians they own) and the people (about 90% of the GOP caucus in the US congress) who are intellectually incapable of grasping a concept as complex as human induced global climate change. To the other 99% of the public it's established scientific fact.
  • vinlynvinlyn Colorado...for now Veteran
    Rather than throw around numbers with no basis, check some data about public opinion. There's lots out there. Here's one interesting article:

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/wp/2013/04/22/how-americans-see-global-warming-in-8-charts/
    person
  • DavidDavid some guy The Hammer in Ontario, Canada, eh Veteran
    I think we need to turn our interests from war to healing and keep on exploring. Heal Earth as well as ourselves and spread to another planet but be peaceful about it.

    We explore, we learn and we grow... It's what we do. There has to be a point when we work together instead of trying to kill each other. Is that too optimistic?

    We fight over "limited" resources in an infinite universe... How stupid is that?


    Jeffrey
  • As long as corporations have an interest in denying reality, climate change will always be debatable, and corporations will always be attempting to, and succeeding at, swaying segments of public opinion.
    person
  • vinlyn said:

    Rather than throw around numbers with no basis, check some data about public opinion. There's lots out there. Here's one interesting article:

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/wp/2013/04/22/how-americans-see-global-warming-in-8-charts/

    That's fine, but this isn't an opinion matter. It's established science. It's no more a matter of opinion than whether the earth is flat or gravity exists. The only people "denying" it are those with a vested interest in keeping things the way they are and people who simply can't understand the complexity of the problem. There's no other reason not to believe it. Period.

    Jeffrey
  • ourself said:

    I think we need to turn our interests from war to healing and keep on exploring. Heal Earth as well as ourselves and spread to another planet but be peaceful about it.

    Nice idea, but who pays for it? Hell we can't even find the money to fix the potholes in our roads and you're trying to establish permanent human colonies on planets we haven't even discovered (let alone figured out a way to travel to) yet?? Yes, you're being a little over optimistic... If we had the Enterprise NX-01 and had discovered several nearby class M planets it'd be a different story. But I don't think warp drive has been invented yet.
    jll
  • vinlynvinlyn Colorado...for now Veteran
    Mountains said:

    vinlyn said:

    Rather than throw around numbers with no basis, check some data about public opinion. There's lots out there. Here's one interesting article:

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/wp/2013/04/22/how-americans-see-global-warming-in-8-charts/

    That's fine, but this isn't an opinion matter. It's established science. It's no more a matter of opinion than whether the earth is flat or gravity exists. The only people "denying" it are those with a vested interest in keeping things the way they are and people who simply can't understand the complexity of the problem. There's no other reason not to believe it. Period.

    You said, "To the other 99% of the public it's established scientific fact." I simply pointed out that your data is waaaaay off.

    I'm not arguing about what science shows. I know. You forget, I have 2 degrees in the geosciences and a minor in physical geography. We were talking the climate change factor way back in the 70s as we looked at the shrinking of most (not all) glaciers around the world.

    Just don't mix incorrect data with scientific fact.

  • Okay, but let's not confuse statistics with vernacular. I'm sure 99.999999% of people reading that know exactly what I'm trying to say. In fact, I'm 107.35% sure of that.
  • mfranzdorfmfranzdorf Veteran
    edited August 2013
    An average of about .4 degrees a decade doesn't really send me into a panic fit. Caused by humans? Probably. Humans going about their lives. I tend to worry more about things that can actually be changed. Just what is the ideal temperature for the earth on average. I would imagine it would be different for every species, so how to know?
  • vinlynvinlyn Colorado...for now Veteran

    An average of about .4 degrees a decade doesn't really send me into a panic fit. Caused by humans? Probably. Humans going about their lives. I tend to worry more about things that can actually be changed. Just what is the ideal temperature for the earth on average. I would imagine it would be different for every species, so how to know?

    How does it feel being one of the "1%"? :D
  • MaryAnneMaryAnne Veteran
    edited August 2013
    Personally, I claim no scientific expertise or even a very strong scientific background other than the usual high school and college classes, but that said;
    I tend to strongly believe the vast majority of scientists who say that while humans aren't actually CAUSING the cycle of climate change we are apparently spiraling into at this time- it is without question that humans -and our pollutions from industry, fossil fuels, etc - have *significantly* accelerated the natural cycle that, in the past, has taken several centuries or more .... not 50-100 yrs.

    And even if we can't stop this accelerated progression, the *least* we can do is whatever we we can to SLOW THE ROLL and find alternative energies and re-regulate pollution causing industries to within acceptable standards, and to just get rid of some others (like fracking) altogether!
    vinlyn
  • mfranzdorfmfranzdorf Veteran
    edited August 2013
    I don't know. We have only been on this planet for such an insignificant amount of time in the grand scheme of things. There is evidence of rise and fall of temperatures, places that have had totally different climates than they do now, all well before our time. We have such a small window of reference that I honestly don't think we can know what we think we know. I'm not trying to be a jackass to anybody about this, but when you look back at history, like ancient history of fossilized evidence, I don't think we can do a darn thing about what the climate and earth decides to do. I'd imagine the climate has made some pretty wild changes over the last 4 or 5 Billion years......

    Anybody decided what the ideal average temperature is yet?
  • vinlyn said:

    An average of about .4 degrees a decade doesn't really send me into a panic fit. Caused by humans? Probably. Humans going about their lives. I tend to worry more about things that can actually be changed. Just what is the ideal temperature for the earth on average. I would imagine it would be different for every species, so how to know?

    How does it feel being one of the "1%"? :D
    Story of my life. How boring would it be if we all agreed on everything. :)
  • vinlynvinlyn Colorado...for now Veteran

    I don't know. We have only been on this planet for such an insignificant amount of time in the grand scheme of things. There is evidence of rise and fall of temperatures, places that have had totally different climates than they do now, all well before our time. We have such a small window of reference that I honestly don't think we can know what we think we know. I'm not trying to be a jackass to anybody about this, but when you look back at history, like ancient history of fossilized evidence, I don't think we can do a darn thing about what the climate and earth decides to do. I'd imagine the climate has made some pretty wild changes over the last 4 or 5 Billion years......

    Anybody decided what the ideal average temperature is yet?

    Keep in mind that the drastic climate differences seen in the "same place" from different geological eras as compared to today are often just reflections on plate tectonics/continental drift...putting the continents in different locations on the earth's sphere.

  • vinlyn said:

    I don't know. We have only been on this planet for such an insignificant amount of time in the grand scheme of things. There is evidence of rise and fall of temperatures, places that have had totally different climates than they do now, all well before our time. We have such a small window of reference that I honestly don't think we can know what we think we know. I'm not trying to be a jackass to anybody about this, but when you look back at history, like ancient history of fossilized evidence, I don't think we can do a darn thing about what the climate and earth decides to do. I'd imagine the climate has made some pretty wild changes over the last 4 or 5 Billion years......

    Anybody decided what the ideal average temperature is yet?

    Keep in mind that the drastic climate differences seen in the "same place" from different geological eras as compared to today are often just reflections on plate tectonics/continental drift...putting the continents in different locations on the earth's sphere.

    I get that, but there have been like 5 known ice ages in the history of the earth. That is a lot of drastic change with zero human input.
  • seeker242seeker242 Zen Florida, USA Veteran
    edited August 2013
    Do you think the debate about climate change is still a debate?
    "97% of climate experts agree humans are causing global warming."

    Still a debate? No!
  • vinlynvinlyn Colorado...for now Veteran

    vinlyn said:

    I don't know. We have only been on this planet for such an insignificant amount of time in the grand scheme of things. There is evidence of rise and fall of temperatures, places that have had totally different climates than they do now, all well before our time. We have such a small window of reference that I honestly don't think we can know what we think we know. I'm not trying to be a jackass to anybody about this, but when you look back at history, like ancient history of fossilized evidence, I don't think we can do a darn thing about what the climate and earth decides to do. I'd imagine the climate has made some pretty wild changes over the last 4 or 5 Billion years......

    Anybody decided what the ideal average temperature is yet?

    Keep in mind that the drastic climate differences seen in the "same place" from different geological eras as compared to today are often just reflections on plate tectonics/continental drift...putting the continents in different locations on the earth's sphere.

    I get that, but there have been like 5 known ice ages in the history of the earth. That is a lot of drastic change with zero human input.
    Yes. That's very true. Periods of extensive vulcanism have sometimes cooled down the earth (which was seen on a small scale with Mount Saint Helens.

    It is best to say that man is one cause of climate change.

  • vinlynvinlyn Colorado...for now Veteran
    seeker242 said:

    Do you think the debate about climate change is still a debate?
    "97% of climate experts agree humans are causing global warming."

    Still a debate? No!

    No, there's still a debate going on, just one that most of us are not buying in on.

  • seeker242seeker242 Zen Florida, USA Veteran
    vinlyn said:

    seeker242 said:

    Do you think the debate about climate change is still a debate?
    "97% of climate experts agree humans are causing global warming."

    Still a debate? No!
    No, there's still a debate going on, just one that most of us are not buying in on.



    Yes, most of us don't work for Exxon.

    :lol:
  • personperson Where is my mind? 'Merica! Veteran
    edited August 2013
    When the last ice age ended slowly over hundreds of years many species of large mammals died off (mammoth, wooly rhinoceros, etc.) and it is thought to be a large factor in people developing agriculture in response, so a major impact. This shift in climate now is occurring within decades. Humans will adjust but our cities and infrastructure are built around the climatic conditions we have now, to have to move whole cities or build sea walls around them, for wide tracks of farmland to turn into desert will be very costly both in terms of economics and socially.
    vinlynMaryAnne
  • DandelionDandelion London Veteran
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/tvandradio/9817181/David-Bellamy-tells-of-moment-he-was-frozen-out-of-BBC.html makes you wonder if scientists are too scared to buck the trend... I've always been a skeptic about man made climate change, personally. It's a money making con. Don't get me started on the holier than thou's, ardent man made climate change doom doers that can't go anywhere without their car, despite living in London, which as you probably know has a phenonomal public transport system. Hypocrites!!
    mfranzdorf
  • DavidDavid some guy The Hammer in Ontario, Canada, eh Veteran
    Mountains said:

    ourself said:

    I think we need to turn our interests from war to healing and keep on exploring. Heal Earth as well as ourselves and spread to another planet but be peaceful about it.

    Nice idea, but who pays for it? Hell we can't even find the money to fix the potholes in our roads and you're trying to establish permanent human colonies on planets we haven't even discovered (let alone figured out a way to travel to) yet??
    Let your knee jerk a little less and settle down. There is lots of money for fixing potholes, just take some out of the entertainment pile once there is a cap on how much money people can make. If we worked together instead of against each other, it would be easy. Only greed stands in the way.
    Yes, you're being a little over optimistic... If we had the Enterprise NX-01 and had discovered several nearby class M planets it'd be a different story. But I don't think warp drive has been invented yet.
    Again, if we were working together, we would have warp drive by now.



  • An average of about .4 degrees a decade doesn't really send me into a panic fit.

    You wouldn't say that if you lived in Tonga or the Seychelles or South Florida or along almost any strip of coastline anywhere in the world. Or if you liked to eat the products of agriculture. Otherwise no, it's no biggie really.

    It's attitudes like yours from people who clearly don't understand the implications (and can't be bothered to learn them) of a 0.4 degree C per decade increase that are the problem.
  • ourself said:

    Let your knee jerk a little less and settle down. There is lots of money for fixing potholes, just take some out of the entertainment pile once there is a cap on how much money people can make. If we worked together instead of against each other, it would be easy. Only greed stands in the way.

    Right. Sure thing. I'll settle my knee down. The United States can't even get a human being off the surface of the planet and into orbit right now, and your solution to climate change is to colonize other planets that haven't even been discovered yet? Whose knee is jerking? Seriously... What's it like on your home planet?
  • robotrobot Veteran
    Mountains said:

    An average of about .4 degrees a decade doesn't really send me into a panic fit.

    You wouldn't say that if you lived in Tonga or the Seychelles or South Florida or along almost any strip of coastline anywhere in the world. Or if you liked to eat the products of agriculture. Otherwise no, it's no biggie really.

    It's attitudes like yours from people who clearly don't understand the implications (and can't be bothered to learn them) of a 0.4 degree C per decade increase that are the problem.
    How can people who don't understand be the problem?
    If someone is to blame its the people who do understand and are lobbying hard for the status quo.
    I personally don't hold out a lot of hope for turning it around.
    If I was living in a beachfront house in Florida or New Jersey, I would definitely be reassessing my lifestyle at this point.
    What can you do for people who insist on building or rebuilding in harms way?
    People can and will adapt. The population may have to shrink. Is that so bad?

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