What’s the Connection between Climate Change and the Weather?

What’s the Connection between Climate Change and the Weather?

Climate Change deniers have always been sharp in the criticism of any one who tries to connect the dots between Climate Change and daily Weather conditions. You often hear “There is no connection between the weather and climate”. That has been accepted for a long time as there have been ‘weather events’, regardless of climate since the beginning of time. However, as recent weather (the last several years) events have shown, perhaps that distinction is breaking down.

Connection at last?

For the past several years, as I studied climate change and thought about it within my understanding of thermo-dynamics, I suspected that weather patterns would change due to changes in the jet stream as the differential in temperatures between the poles and equatorial region diminished. Turns out that my suspicions were fairly accurate. In the following video Jennifer Francis, Professor at Rutgers University, makes the case (and explains it well) for the changes in the jet stream being the driving force behind the, what one could almost call bizarre, weather of the last two years. Ironically, the unprecedented cold weather seen in places as far from the poles as northern Africa are a result of “Climate Change” caused by “Global Warming”. This is because the fluctuations in the jet stream have become abnormal. The satellite and ground observations are in sync on this point.

So, what do you think? Need we start having a new conversation on the connection between “Climate Change” and the “Weather”?

Ed

 

Posted in energy | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Is Global Warming Just a Conspiracy Theory?

Is Global Warming Just a Conspiracy Theory?

When I first started this blog it was simply to explore the technologies that would allow us to move beyond coal and oil as our primary sources of energy. At the time I felt that doing so was our only option as it had been clear to me for over 40 years that fossil fuels were a finite resource that had to become depleted in time. My research indicated that “Peak Oil” had been achieved and that it was time to get serious about finding replacements for the fuels that we used to produce electricity and power transportation. I focused on the technologies that were extant (though I’m sure that there are “exotic” technologies that will come along in time) since I was convinced that we needed to act now. I didn’t concern myself with the issue of Global Warming or Climate Change as I had accepted the IPCC report that any profound changes were in the relatively distant future. 2100 seemed a long way off (though it really isn’t) and I was sure that the transition to sustainable energy production would, by that time, be complete.

Then, much to my chagrin, the Climate Issue reared it’s very ugly head. As I did my regular research on energy issues I learned that the atmosphere is a lot more sensitive than we had first thought. During the regular annual carbon cycle the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere fluctuates. As the temperature rises in any given area (northern and southern hemispheres) due to the progression of the seasons, CO2 is pulled out of the atmosphere by growing plants. As winter progresses decomposition of of plant material puts CO2 back into the atmosphere so it appears that CO2 is a “lagging indicator” rather than a “leading indicator” of temperature. That’s only partially true and the seasonal temperature changes hide the relationship between CO2 and the global temperature. It is the CO2 and the other greenhouse gases that make the planet liveable. So, on an overall basis, by adding CO2 that had been sequestered from ancient atmospheres we were trapping more of the heat from solar radiation. This was hidden by the normal temperature fluctuations that we all know so many people have decided that Global Warming is Just a Conspiracy Theory. They propounded countless different reasons for such a theory with most of them being based on belief (or disbelief) or other emotional reasons. Some, who had vested interests in maintaining the use of coal and oil supported the folks who were denying that there was a problem. Much of the Mainstream Media also became confused on the issue and dropped coverage or even helped to muddy the waters. You might even have seen the politichicks on the tube. They mock the people warming about the problem and people fall for this tactic. A little research show that Shannon Goessling and the Southeastern Legal Foundation have gotten funding from Exxon Mobil . It seems that it’s mostly, so called, right wingers that are behind the effort to discredit scientists working on this issue. They know that the change over to renewables will be expensive and will affect their pocketbooks. They don’t seem to care if even their own children die an early death, that’s the depth of their denial. Check out this short clip and you’ll see what I’m talking about.

Just this morning I ran across a site that posted an interesting video about why the Moon Landing couldn’t have been a Hoax. A lot of people actually think that it was staged in a film studio to make the Russians believe that we had beaten them in the Space Race. You can view the clip (it’s fun) that was posted on YouTube and at the Daily Bell. The reason that I point this story out is that several paragraphs into their story the the reporters make this statement:  “Obviously, false global promotions like “global warming” are propounded no matter how many times they are debunked.” They too, believe that Global warming is some kind of hoax. Meant to advance a globalist agenda. What’s discouraging is that there is just enough truth to some of their fears that it’s difficult for readers to separate the wheat from the chaff.  Looking at all conspiracy theories, some are true and some are not. Sadly, though, Global Warming and the Climate Change that it will usher in is NOT a conspiracy, NOT a hoax and the implications are not fun to contemplate.

Peak Oil: How will Peak Oil affect the Economy?

This film spells out what peak oil means and how it will affect us and why I looked for technologies that I hoped would avert the effects of diminishing oil. I still believe that oil from algae along with some major improvements in mileage would allow for some continuation of what we have today but it would be a lot different and endless growth cannot continue. If we survive at all the world will a different place in 2100. So, believe what you like. It won’t change what is headed our way. All that anyone can do is to try to prepare for the coming changes and become more self-sufficient and less dependent on the prevailing system that we presently enjoy. It is soon to change.  Oh, and, if you can, “be of good cheer”

What’s your take???

Ed

 

 

Posted in global warming, peak oil | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Earth: What’s it’s Carrying Capacity?

Earth: What’s it’s Carrying Capacity?

Just a short post today. David Attenborough has always been one of my favorite personalities. His work and films have never failed to instruct and make one think. He is, in my humble opinion, one of the greatest Naturalists of all time. That’s why I was pleased to find the following program that he did in 2009. It’s a bit out of date and many of the “projections” will now probably not come to pass as Global Warming or Climate Change (whatever you wish to call it) had been underestimated. The program looks at population overshoot and it’s impact on resources and it’s not a pretty picture. It is, however, an issue that will affect us all in the coming years , like it or not. I offer it here for your edification.

BBC Horizon – How Many People Can Live

                    On Planet Earth

What then do you think? What is humanity to do? Can we avert disaster?

Edward Kerr

 

 

 

Posted in fossil fuel energy, global warming | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Climate Wars

The Climate Wars

As an amateur Geologist I have been a fan of Dr Iain Stewart professor of Geoscience Communication at the University of Plymouth for a long time. Like me he is Scottish but I won’t hold that against him. You can see his bio here. I have watched many of his programs and “How to Grow a Planet” was a favorite of mine. However, in 2008 he did a three episode series called “Earth: The Climate Wars” which I somehow missed. They were a look at the history of the science and the politics of Global Warming. I was surprised and pleased then to run across those films during my regular research on energy and climate. They speak for them selves and though dated now they shed a lot of light on what has become Climate Wars.  Episode one looks at the History of Climate Science and shows how things have changed as new information becomes available. His work also highlights how people have come to question climate scientists for in the early 1970′s they were warning about a “New Ice Age”.

Earth: The Climate Wars, Episode One

In episode two he looks at the “climate change skeptics” and clears up a lot of the confusion that surrounds the issue that we now know as “Climate Wars”..to this day deniers and believers are at loggerheads over whether climate change is real of if it is, are humans the cause(?)

Earth: The Climate Wars, Episode Two

In episode three he continues to sum things up and look to the future. Like me he has children and he is concerned for the future that awaits.

Earth: The Climate Wars, Episode Three

As I stated earlier these films are somewhat dated even if the wars continue. What was missing  in 2008 was knowledge of the fact that Global Warming, up to this point, has had consequences that few could imagine just those few short years ago. Specifically, current warming has started some natural (in the sense that they are driven by physics) positive feedback loops that threaten to send the global temperature into ranges that will preclude the continued existence of humans on this planet. Along with us most of the plant and animal life will also become extinct. Many people will poo poo that assertion and dismiss me as  simply an “alarmist” or worse, “crazy”. I am alarmed and some have questioned my sanity over the years of my life. The good news (and I say that with a taste of sarcasm) is that in a few short years if the climate change situation does become non-linear and unpredictable, no one will then be able to deny the truth or poo poo crazy old Edward.

I have never in my life wished so fervently to be wrong about anything. Only time will tell. However, It’s a foregone conclusion that if we continue on the path that we are on we will come to death and despair. The time line of 2031 might be off by a few years but the end of the road will be the same. It is with the saddest of countenances that I post these things but as a truth seeker I am obliged to speak out in the hope that we can avert this looming disaster.

Wishing everyone the best,

Ed

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in global warming | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Stuck Between the Impossible and Unthinkable

Stuck Between the Impossible and Unthinkable!

That’s where we are today. We need to address greenhouse gases, which appears to be all but impossible, in order to avoid extinction, which is unthinkable. I have talked about the need to develop a completely sustainable energy delivery system since long before beginning this blog and have been shown that the world doesn’t seem to want to listen to reason. I say “reason” because any reasonable person would agree that business as usual cannot go on indefinitely. Fossil fuels will run out and are becoming uncomfortably expensive to extract, even today. I avoided “global warming” or the lesser euphemism, “climate change” as there seemed to be such controversy about the subject that I figured “logic” would be enough. Boy was I wrong. It’s been petal to metal all along. Even in the face of dire warnings from the scientific community. I’ve posted some of those warnings already and here are a few more logs for that fire: Here, in a TED TALK  David Roberts explains that climate change is simple.

 

David Roberts: Climate Change is Simple

 

Here is a more scientific look at why Methane is such a big deal:

You might recall (or you can read it just below this post) that last time I left you all with the admonition from Malcolm Light, that if we fail to address the Methane that is now emanating from the arctic, that we are looking at a Permian-Triassic Level Extinction event on this planet in as few as 18years (in the northern hemisphere) and by 2047 globally. Needless to say that is an unthinkable outcome. However, the science is hard to refute.

What to do?

Once I was able to “wrap my brain around” what was being implicated I felt that I had to, at least try, to do something. But what can one person do? Since I live way out in the middle of nowhere and my connection to the world is my computer, I decided to spread the information as widely as I could with the tools available to me. First, I spoke with my family at Christmas time (yeah, I know, great time to bring up such a wonderful subject). I learned from that experience that people simply “glaze over” or “go blank” when the unthinkable is broached. For the last month I have been posting the main links to the information in the comment sections of blogs that address climate issues along with other, usually political. issues. The feedback has been mixed. Some readers “get it” and comment accordingly. Other readers, who mostly still deny that the planet is warming, have come back with mostly name calling and asserting that I am an idiot or some “liberal” troll spouting alarmist propaganda, like Al Gore. When talking directly with friends I am amazed at the responses. A lot of them just say that God will intervene, come down through the roof, and save the day. Sadly, most people don’t understand the science behind atmospheric chemistry and hide behind beliefs rather than even trying to comprehend.

I’ve tried to alert the media and government.

I’ve contacted “Democracy Now” as they have a place on their web site where viewers (which I don’t do as I have no TV) can suggest issues to cover. I got back an auto response that said that due to the amount of suggestions it was impossible to answer any individual person. I’m not holding my breath. I also wrote to the Washington Post and still await a reply. Media, especially main stream media, appears to wish to avoid “sticky subjects”.

Before that I sent both an email letter and a hard copy letter to Secretary of Energy Steven Chu thinking that it might be the quickest way to get to the President. I’ve written to the President before and realize that his mail is finely screened. Appears that Secretary Chu’s is too. (silly me) anyway here is a copy of the missive that I sent on the last day of 2012.

December 31, 2012
F.Edward Kerr
1791 Schellsburg Rd  Apt#1
Claysburg, PA 16625-8728
814 239-2277   Email leeo10@yahoo.com

Secretary of Energy Steven Chu
1000 Independence Ave. SW
Washington DC 20585

Dear Secretary Chu,

I am contacting you to raise an issue of great concern to all of humanity. As a person who is truly concerned about our energy dilemma (which I blog about at energyquicksand.com) I constantly review news articles that have any relationship to the energy issue. For the most part I have avoided addressing the situation of climate change (global warming if you will) preferring to focus on the technologies that I believe have the best chance of leading us to a carbon neutral energy future. Recently, however, I viewed a lecture that Professor Guy McPherson (Professor Emeritus of Natural Resources and Ecology & Evolutionary Biology) is presenting to anyone who will listen. It has changed my outlook entirely. You can review it here. {http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ina16XSJQvM} The first 20 minutes wherein he lays out the claim that the latest science on the global warming issue predicts a Permian-Triassic Extinction level event in as short as 18 years is disquieting , to say the least. I have waded through as many of his references that I could find and the science appears solid to me.

One of the scientists that Dr McPherson bases much of his talk on is Malcolm Light who reported his findings on the Arctic News web site in February 2012 {http://arctic-news.blogspot.co.uk/p/global-extinction-within-one-human.html} In his report he notes the release of methane has gone exponential and consequently, global warming will diverge from it’s assumed linear progression. Even you spoke of this in a short video that was posted in 2010 { http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oHqKxWvcBdg } where you laid out the potential problem in laymen’s terms and ended with the admonition “we cannot go there” Ironically, the process had already begun and appears irreversible. Though it would seem hopeless it appears that there is a method by which this methane can be degraded. At the end of his report Malcolm Light gives three suggestions as to what needs to be done to avoid an unspeakable catastrophe. They are:

Number1. Developed (and some developing) countries must cut back their carbon dioxide emissions by a very large percentage (50% to 90%) by 2020 to immediately precipitate a cooling of the Earth and its crust. If this is not done the earthquake frequency and methane emissions in the Arctic will continue to  grow exponentially leading to our inexorable demise in 2038 to 2050.

Number2. Geo-engineering must be used immediately as a cooling method in the Arctic to counteract the effects of the methane buildup in the short term. However, these methods will lead to further pollution of the atmosphere in the long term and will not solve the earthquake induced  Arctic methane buildup which is going to lead to our annihilation.

Number3. The United States and Russia must immediately develop a net of powerful radio beam frequency transmission stations around the Arctic using the critical 13.56 MHZ  beat frequency to break down the methane in the stratosphere and troposphere to nanodiamonds and hydrogen (Light 2011a) . Besides the elimination of the high global warming potential methane, the nanodiamonds may form seeds for light reflecting noctilucent clouds in the stratosphere and a light colored energy reflecting layer when brought down to the Earth by snow and rain (Light 2011a). HAARP transmission systems are able to electronically vibrate the strong ionospheric electric current that feeds down into the polar areas and are thus the least evasive method of  directly eliminating the buildup of methane in those critical regions (Light 2011a).

Obviously, Number one isn’t likely. Number two, I believe, is ongoing (but not necessarily in the arctic) but without much success. Number three looks to me to be the only practical way to mediate the situation to buy some time to address the underlying problem, the burning of fossil fuels.
Malcolm Light references the science behind methane degradation. {https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/10b1VGrbysjL4GDyQVldwFXtrd7xJgq89XzJNueqVkks/edit#slide=id.p} It’s an interesting read. He also suggests harvesting arctic methane for energy purposes.  Music to the industries ears, I’d wager.
{https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1vOw215pGuiob9qu0VRrc2Uumfxr8xU3s4Q2k_YNdsE/edit#slide=id.p45}

At this point you are probably asking yourself, “why has this person contacted me?” The reason is simple. You are one of the few people in the upper levels of the administration who is sure to have an understanding of the information that I have sent and, more importantly, you have the presidents ear. After President Obama’s first election I wrote him a letter outlining my ideas as to how we might, as he said, “heal the earth and stop the rise of the oceans” by ramping out wind (my estimates put us needing about 3 million generators) along with solar to provide electricity. And, to provide liquid fuels for transportation the building of greenhouses to grow algae. This will require a lot of land but the southwest has ample land. Water will be a problem but in a greenhouse environment water loss will be minimal compared to an “open pond” system.  I still think that , in the end, should we avert disaster, that a system that resembles what I envision will develop. Of course, there are the “zero point” advocates (which would be really nice) but until something develops along those lines I look for the existing nascent technologies that we already have to solve the problem. Several months after sending the letter I received a reply (form letter) that made me realize that my letter had simply been “filed”. That didn’t really surprise me but this situation is too important to leave to chance.

What I am asking you to do is to have your staff investigate this information and that if it turns out to be true (as I believe it is) that you approach the President and/or the parties who can actually do something to address the methane issue. If Senator Kerry is confirmed as the new Secretary of State he might also wish to address this matter.

Finally, I may be way behind the curve here and that the government is well aware of the situation and is already working toward mitigating the problem and are not making it public knowledge. I realize that the govt, nor the media, would ever tell the population that business as usual will lead to humanities extinction in a few short years. The fallout of doing so could be uncontrollable and we can’t have that! But I would ask this question, of myself, of you and the President: “In the near future when the evidence of our demise becomes irrefutable how will anyone, who had knowledge of this and didn’t do everything within their power to avert this disaster, be able to look their loved ones, or themselves, in the eye?”

Thanking you in advance for your time, thoughtfulness and consideration, I am and will remain,
Sincerely yours,
With warmest personal regards,

F. Edward Kerr

Additional references:

https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/10b1VGrbysjL4GDyQVldwFXtrd7xJgq89XzJNueqVkks/edit#slide=id.p
Project Lucy-proposal to address atmospheric Methane

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mBTh-nmauww
Methane Siberian lake

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yN4OdKPy9rM&NR=1&feature=endscreen
Permafrost in Siberia

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MbXuvQQt9YY&NR=1&feature=endscreen
Davis Wasdell

http://theenergycollective.com/globalwarmingisreal/155651/initial-ipcc-predictions-global-temperature-rise-remarkably-accurate
(linear thinking)

http://www.energybulletin.net/stories/2012-09-04/game-over-or-overtime
Albert bates on methane-fracking and some politics

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Permian%E2%80%93Triassic_extinction_event

http://thegazette.com/2012/04/15/the-time-to-attack-methane-is-now/
(Harold Hensel  4-15-12 article on M.Light and his method to attack methane)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=br8BOnCkjd4#!
Methane in the arctic

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=tsyXKT-gYgA
Arctic Warming: Risks for Methane Emissions  Dr. Ronald Prinn TEPCO professor of atmospheric science at MIT

http://www.youtube.com/watch?NR=1&v=NqN38WyOfMY&feature=fvwp
SWIPA snow water ice permafrost in the arctic   (social impacts of GW on native peoples)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sn_2BwlmtOw
The global warming effect of Arctic methane

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sJp3_DcN1i4
Dr. James Hansen: Facing the Truth About Global Warming

http://www.worldenergyoutlook.org/
IEA World Outlook    Nov 2012

http://www.copenhagendiagnosis.com/download/CopenhagenDiagnosis_Powerpoint_COP15.pdf

http://arctic-news.blogspot.com/2012/10/state-of-climate-change-october-2012.html
Paul Beckwith Oct 2012  on Arctic News

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=xwpnmsLwinI#!
Climate Change 2012 by Peter Sinclair

http://www.sciencemag.org/content/327/5970/1246.full.pdf
Extensive Methane Venting to the Atmosphere from Sediments of the East Siberian Arctic Shelf

http://www.sciencemag.org/content/331/6017/554.full.pdf
Amazon drought

http://science.time.com/2012/08/29/antarctica-a-greenhouse-gas-hotspot/
Antarctic Methane

http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/Newsroom/view.php?id=43083
NASA arctic methane

http://www.ameg.me/
Arctic Methane Emergency Group

PS. I will also send this in an E-Mail so that you can access the references more easily.
Again I thank you for your attention and request that you send back and E-Mail (leeo10@yahoo.com) just so that I know that you have received this message.

Wishing you and yours a Safe, Prosperous and Happy New Year
Ed

Retort from DOE

Thank you for your email to Secretary of Energy Steven Chu.  Your message has been received by the Office of the Executive Secretariat on behalf of the Secretary and will be reviewed by the appropriate Department of Energy officials.

Thank you.

almost three weeks later I await a reply..

So, that’s where it stands for me today. Realizing that we have probably killed ourselves out of what?…idiocy? unwillingness to give up our toys? disbelief that a problem exists? laziness? not wanting to spend the money to change? not wanting to lose income (fossil interests)? of simple ignorance? what???,,,,  has made my life feel like a dream that I can’t wake from. I walk about and look at people and think, “they’re just like the dinosaurs, a meteor is soon to extinguish them and the can’t see it coming” It’s almost too much to bear but my morbid sense of curiosity make me want to live long enough to see how this is all going to “pan out”? Will we find Gold in the bottom of the pan or something else?  Unless mankind soon realizes the gravity of the situation and takes the necessary actions, I don’t think that it will be gold that we find.

So, for now, the ball is in your court. What will you do? I will continue to do everything that I can to have something meaningful happen, while trying to “be of good cheer”… Will you?

Regards to all,

Edward

 

 

 

 

Posted in global warming | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments