Saturday, January 23, 2010

They Should Be Paying Us

You see that chart above? It was taken from an article on the missing carbon sink. The graphs in the chart show results for net CO2 emission or absorption from before and after the missing sink was found.

Note the down arrows for North America? That means North America is absorbing more CO2 than it is emitting (at least if I understand the chart correctly). The rest of the world should be paying us for the service we are providing. Or at the very least they should stop hectoring us about our energy generation methods.

But the scientists are still not happy.

Other scientists have also recently come to the conclusion that northern forests, although critically important in maintaining biodiversity, might be less important in slowing climate change than tropical forests. Govindasamy Bala and Ken Caldeira found that tropical forests help cool the Earth in two ways: by storing carbon and also by reflecting the suns warming rays back to space. "Unlike tropical forests, high latitude forests darken the Earth's surface, causing the earth to absorb more sunlight, an effect that is most pronounced in snowy regions. This darkening of the surface has a warming influence that can be stronger than the cooling influence of carbon storage in these forests," says Caldeira. This suggests that removing high-latitude forests would have a net cooling effect on the planet, whereas removal of tropical forests would result in warming.
So if we cut down all the trees in North America it would be better for the planet? Right!

Get the chain saws out boys we have some work to do.

Cross Posted at Classical Values


Givin said...

if you compare the data in the second paragraph to the data in the graphic, it says that "2.6 billion tonnes (is) sucked up by land" and the graphic seems to state that 2.4 of that was (previously) thought to be in north America.

The graphic seems to only consider what the absorption rates are, ignoring production?

at any rate the articles facts and figures are at least poorly assembled and at worst partly spun doctored. It seems the reader is unlikely to make it through the field of contradictory information and still take home the conclusion that "ultimately we need to get the carbon into the ocean or geologic reservoirs, or not emit it in the first place."

freedom to create, or freedom to destroy?

we must maintain a livable planet if we are to have a place for freedom to exist at all.

M. Simon said...

Communists have never created a livable anything.

Nice try though.

The recent science says that global warming may be due to ocean currents (up to 50%) and changes in the sun (up to 33%). And no account has been taken of possible volcanic eruptions.

CO2 may play a small role in climate.

In any case CO2 production in the USA is relatively flat. You are going to have to take your complaints up with the Chinese whose CO2 production exceeds that of the US and whose output is doubling every 20 years.

Givin said...

So what sort of government structure would you put a tribe into?

I'm pretty sure Tribes had something to do with most of the good stuff the colonists inherited after disease wiped out most of the native people here. seems pretty communal to me.

and anyway, was that a response to anything to do with this thread, or poorly placed cheap shot?

The problem is bigger than changing weather patterns.

Ignore global warming if you want to. even if it's non-issue, That doesn't change the fact that our grandchildren will inherit a toxic waste dump.

Mahndisa S. Rigmaiden said...

Hey M. just checking in with you. I haven't gotten any of your emails lately and I must say that I miss them. Hope all is well:)

M. Simon said...


Tribalism is why we are suckers for socialism. But big daddy only works if daddy knows ALL his children.

As to toxicity. Rich countries are cleaner than poor ones. And even Marx knew that if you want rich, capitalism is the way to go.

Marx said that socialism was good when profits were not increasing. So far we have yet to reach that stage. Profits in China and India are accelerating. Now that capitalism makes up a bigger share of their economy. But China is dirty. They are not yet rich enough for clean up. I suppose they could always pay us to plant trees.

Givin said...

The cause for the pollution imbalance is the rich corporations from rich countries exploiting laws in poor places that can't protect their resources like we can. didn't you know that coke kills?

daddy knowing his children sounds like (gasp!) accountability to me. I hear Abe Lincoln used to respond to correspondence... our pol's don't even respond when 81% of us want the same thing.

keep trying Simon. soon enough you will stump me.

M. Simon said...

You can't stump some one who has faith.


What ruins poor countries is that they are run by dictators. It is the dictators who make the deals that line their own pockets and keep the people poor.

M. Simon said...

Socialism has never ever fixed a dictatorship.

Givin said...

Borrowed from the Australian blog

"...Where did it come from? The conventional consensus view that Al Gore helped form with his slide show “Inconvenient Truth” and the unanimity of the 2500 IPCC Scientists gave us a sense of certainty about the problem we face. The dissenters were fringe ‘professors for hire’ in the pay of Exxon Mobil whose influence was limited to small circles of far right activists. They had a clear strategy: create doubt. It played perfectly on the IPCC’s naïve honesty in publishing its degrees of uncertainty. The complexity of Climate Change science itself is also a fundamental weakness the scientists never sought to address.

"It was illogical and contradictory: how could Global Warming involve periods of cooling? If it does, don’t call it ‘warming’. And don’t rely on “Trust me. I’m a scientist.” The conspiracy theories promoted by the Denialists found willing ears among older audiences, especially in the regions where – ironically – Climate Change was hurting most. The arrogance of the scientists fed their suspicions.

"...Now we know what we have to do. Al Gore is right: simply giving out more facts won’t work. More handwringing by scientists on TV won’t do it. More Chicken Little predictions won’t either. None of that reaches the ordinary folk where they live.

"Take a leaf from the Denialists’ book: To neutralise the following they have gathered we must create doubt. They are not impressed with the downside they have been pitched – environmental degradation. It doesn’t out-point ‘a monster tax on everything’. They don’t care about the environment.

"So if Barnaby and the Denialists prevail and the soil carbon sequestration solution is not deployed in time to bring down CO2 levels equivalent to 50ppm for 50 years, your grandchildren will have some new neighbours. "

M. Simon said...


The Global Warming Scam is run by profiteers.

Hansen In Cahoots With Enron

Al Gore worth $2 mil when he left the Senate. worth $200 mil now.

Times of India

NEW DELHI: A report in a British newspaper has accused IPCC chief Rajendra K Pachauri of making a fortune from his links with ‘‘carbon trading’’ companies.

Apart from listing the number of companies, banks and institutes with which the IPCC chairman is associated, the report in The Telegraph of London alleges that Pachauri’s The Energy Research Institute (TERI) continues to have ‘‘close links’’ with the Tata Group (which set up the institute) and that this relationship has helped the latter in its green and carbon trading businesses.

There is also evidence that a Indian "scientist" faked the Glaciers are Melting in the Himalayas scam. And one of Pachauri's companies got a grant to study it. Two years ago the faker was taken on by one of Dr. P's companies.

The wheels are falling off this scam.

By this summer "global warming" will be a punch lie to a number of jokes.

Read my blogging for today. It is coming apart.

Carbon Trading Failing


"Climate scientists are losing the fight with the sceptics," he said.



So what do you propose reeducation camps and ovens for deniers. Keep us from voting?


You know - Alinsky tactics - make the other guys live up to their own rules. You want to rail against corruption? Don't indulge in it.

M. Simon said...


I love trees. More CO2 is good for trees. It feeds them. I think about 1,000 ppm would be ideal for trees.

More plants more life. I like life.

Givin said...

Dictators get propped up by out of state pollitical powers who depend on dictators to help them make the deals that line their own pockets and keep the people poor.

political powers in turn are propped up by multinational corporations who have us convinced we must consult the nasdaq 500 before doing anything to ensure the survival of the human race.

U.S. Military Interventions since 1890:

Givin said...

"So what do you propose reeducation camps and ovens for deniers. Keep us from voting?"

slipping in the Nazi reference is a great way to stop a conversation that you can't find another way out of gracefully.

this issue of climate change to me is a non-issue. yes, the weather is getting weirder. yes, we obviously had something to do with it. no, we can't really prove it. in every instance, the fact remains capitalism is consuming resources dozens or hundreds of times faster than they naturally accumulate.

Givin said...

"I love trees. More CO2 is good for trees. It feeds them. I think about 1,000 ppm would be ideal for trees.

More plants more life. I like life."

Every change that the global climate experiences effects the livability of sensitive bio-regions.

you may not care if average sea level rises some tiny fraction of an inch, but hundreds of small island nations will loose half their entire surface area.

you may think trees like more co2, but so does kudzu. kudzu blankets and destroys everything it touches.

I live at 9,000 feet elevation. it's likely that if oxygen ratios dropped lower, the ceiling for sustained human activity could possibly drop below some mountain towns.

sustaining life is dependent upon sustaining balance.

here we are playing on the teeter totter all alone.

M. Simon said...

you may not care if average sea level rises some tiny fraction of an inch, but hundreds of small island nations will loose half their entire surface area.

Tough for them. If the IPCC is right the sea level could rise as much as between 4" and 17" by 2100.

Those folks will either have to learn how to get on a boat or how to swim. I don't know how they will manage. With sea levels rising at 2 mm a year and coral reefs rising at 5 mm a year I think the odds of coral islands going under water are slim.

I like your idea of keeping things the same though. It has possibilities. Do you know how to keep the sun spot levels up? Low levels seem to be associated with cooling. But if it goes too far we get ice ages, big and little. A little reduction in sun spots might be good. Where is the control knob?

But let me run it by you again:

Solar variation accounts for as much as 1/3rd of the warming. Ocean currents as much as 1/2. That means man made CO2 could account for as little as 15% of the warming. Do you realize what life will be like in the USA with an 85% reduction of CO2 by 2050? I'll give you a clue. With the Chinese and Indians hard at it - it will not matter.

What do you propose to do about China which by 2040 or 2050 will be producing 4X as much CO2 as the US?

Do we have to go to war with them? I'm a little old for that sort of thing (Naval Nuke in '66) but maybe you could do the service.

And how about India which is also ramping up? The USA output is flat in comparison. And if the Africans join in we are really screwed.

How about a plan?


When I was on the left we used to promise faster reductions in poverty and greater wealth. The opposite is going to be a harder sell. Electricity service for everyone. And not just when the wind was blowing.

M. Simon said...

I get your point about high altitude living. If CO2 went from .04% of the air you breathe to .1% And oxygen went from 19% to 18.94% I could definitely see you having a lot of trouble breathing.

House plants. Or maybe only breathe outdoors. Indoor air quality sucks. I think you will be fine if you only breathe outdoors.

Are all lefties as innumerate as you or just most of them?

Roger Fox seems to be the exception. Josh Cryer also seems to be able to run the numbers. Whats a matter with you?

The California State Treasurer (A Democrat) says Democrats should ask Republicans about numbers.

Ask Republicans About Numbers.

I'm honored to be of service.

M. Simon said...

the fact remains capitalism is consuming resources dozens or hundreds of times faster than they naturally accumulate.

The fact is capitalism is creating resources faster than they are used up.

New Elements from Old

The weight of the earth is 5,973,700,000,000,000,000,000 metric tons.

Just what are we running out of?

There is enough deuterium in the ocean to power human civilization for at least 100 million years. By then we may have figured out one or two things.

Heck - if we just extracted the uranium from the ocean we could keep going for 100 or 200 years. Time enough to figure out how to do what is next.

OK you don't like uranium. How about thorium? We have 3X as much as uranium. No way to use it yet? Coal will keep the USA going for 400 years.

Metals? Almost all of them get recycled. Run low? Well we can substitute. Carbon fiber for copper. Aluminum for platinum.

You are not keeping up my friend.

You should never argue this stuff with an engineer. We are experts at doing more with less.

Givin said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Givin said...

well, as a country we give other countries the choice between capitalism on one hand and the bomb on the other.

How many arms deals and economic de-stabilization's have we initiated to protect global interests in local issues?

I'm sure you know something about this side of history as you are a veteran.

Capitalism has maintained it's position as the best option by destroying the competition.

M. Simon said...

capitalism is consuming resources dozens or hundreds of times faster than they naturally accumulate.

I'm an engineer and haven't seen it.

As to competing with capitalism - Marx was no dummy. He said if you needed to accumulate capital capitalism was the only way to go.

Now since Marx was no dummy how do you explain your position?

The deal is: I was lefter than you will ever be in my youth. I know all the ins and outs. I will tell you true. It is a crock.

Capitalism naturally aligns with environmentalism because it continually strives to do more with less in order to increase profits. No such incentive motivates socialism. And that is also why only capitalism can compete with capitalism.

It is a tough world. Get used to it.

M. Simon said...

Any system with large incentives to continually do more with less will always beat any system without such incentives.

Get over it.

Givin said...

Kudos. it's true, engineers can do more with less. There are a few in my family tree, not that it matters much, but that's why I genuinely appreciate your way of thinking.

and your right, I utilized a logical construct that justified my instinctual feeling.

I am do trust my gut feeling in matters of the environment because
I just can't appreciate no forests and no diversity and no clean rivers and concrete jungles that only people live in.

in my lifetime, I have seen a lot of those resources sold out to or not protected from or outright destroyed for the sake of money. You may be older, and we can both find lots of great statistics to back up our claims.

I do have faith. I trust my instinct that success should be measured in terms of survival beyond my own generation.

M. Simon said...

I'm working with a guy who has the ear of our government on a plan to fix Haiti.

It involves One Lap Top Per Child. Look it up. Mitch Bradley who is involved with OLPT is an old friend. if you look up Mitch Bradley Open Firmware you can learn something.

If anything comes of it I will blog it.

BTW Haiti because it can't afford "fossil" fuels has no trees.

North America has been reverting to trees since 1900.

In a word your "green" friends are lying to you.

Givin said...

Laptop projects have been around for years.

too bad we can't drink or eat them, or grow anything with them, or grow anything but Monsanto seeds for that matter.

If anything comes of it I expect it will be too little too late and at too high a price in terms other than money.

I don't listen to green lies any more than red ones or blue ones.

M. Simon said...

Well you can't eat books either.

But they did a LOT to improve farming.

You know I don't know why modern lefties are such narrow thinkers. They used to be a lot smarter when I was a kid.

WE used to have plans. We used to read EVERYTHING. The Whole Earth Catalog was our bible. Right wing thought was not foreign to us.

The left was a LOT more libertarian back then - give people better options at a lower cost and you don't have to force anything.

A shame really. I never gave up that mind set. What I learned was that it was only the right that was implementing it.

M. Simon said...

Dictators can't be propped up for long without about 1/3rd of the people supporting them.

Even dictators need some popular support.

The cure is to teach Americanism.

Of all the colonial powers those under British rule have fared the best.

I think that is because the Brit political system was the best. Until the Americans arrived.

Gandhi was a product of British thought. Hong Kong has absorbed China.

Some one is going to rule the world - for good or ill. I'd rather it be America. The long term results will be better. Short term no doubt there will be difficulties and misfortune.

Cultures rub off on each other. American culture is good for people.