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noggin

Politics And AGW/GW

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What I find more fascinating is the comments under the article, its amazing for such a scientific certainty that the pro AGW proclaimists would have us believe that their are some many dissenters? Even UFOs have greater public support then AGW yet we keep being told how unanimous the opposite is true. Could it be that people are just not happy to believe governments after all they just told us they did not realise the credit crunch was coming :aggressive:

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I think there are many reasons for the mass scepticism among the general public with regards AGW, some good, some bad. There is a tendency for people to bury their heads in the sand and think "I'm Alright Jack", and try to "look on the bright side"- an annoying trait of our society is to brush aside problems with "that's life", "everything happens for a reason", "think of how lucky we are", "try not to see it as a problem" etc instead of doing something about them. So the masses like to assume the positive, i.e. that there isn't a problem.

There is also a desire to avoid making uncomfortable changes in order to combat AGW. This is fuelled by the issue that most environmental campaigners believe that we need to make far more sacrifices to human development to combat the problem than are probably necessary. There is also the "war against those evil motorists" phenomenon that causes a lot of resentment.

In addition we have the issue of people being lied to by the media and by politicians. The science behind AGW contains a lot of uncertainty, but when articles on AGW are passed to the public they're mostly written and said as if the science is settled/certain. This is a more positive reason behind scepticism as it shows some people are recognising when they are being lied to. And yes, perhaps this is related to the general distrust of the leading authorities these days.

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I think there are many reasons for the mass scepticism among the general public with regards AGW, some good, some bad. There is a tendency for people to bury their heads in the sand and think "I'm Alright Jack", and try to "look on the bright side"- an annoying trait of our society is to brush aside problems with "that's life", "everything happens for a reason", "think of how lucky we are", "try not to see it as a problem" etc instead of doing something about them. So the masses like to assume the positive, i.e. that there isn't a problem.

There is also a desire to avoid making uncomfortable changes in order to combat AGW.

Perhaps the primary reason for 'mass sceptisism' is that the majority of folk actually have the wit and ability to work it out for themselves - ever considered that scary possibility,TWS? The PTB clearly haven't and they can detect the first rattlings of their ivory cages.

On a purely personal level,I've never had an "I'm alright Jack" kinda approach nor any of the other attributes/attitudes you mention above - sometimes wish I had - life's passage thus far would have undoubtedly been less fraught. I'm well accustomed to making uncomfortable changes and,without elaborating too much, 'roughing it'. Not a problem,I'm used to it and it all adds to life's rich and varied tapestry etc. Sometimes,or in my case often, 'needs must'. But to 'tackle' a problem which simply does not exist? Please.....

When the perfect climatic state that 'they' want to establish arrives and stabilises as a result of all that's being mooted in it's pursuit,would someone kindly let me know so's I can rest easy over it? Thanks.

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Lied to? Mid 'cooling' we see global ice levels at an all time low (even the Weddell sea is melting out this year!) with Arctic ice levels stalled again. AGW has the poles the most impacted and ,from there, we have a 'trickle down' impact on globals weather cycles (how long will this PDO-ve maintain for ??? another 4 year 'blunder'?).

With MetO/Uni East Anglia calling for a warmer year than last and GISS calling for a 'warmest global year' within 24months (along with an El-Nino by late 09/early 10) you are left to wonder who will prove right? There is little hope of northern sea ice not being hammered again this year leaving us with a definite 'step change' having occurred in 07 (in the Lovelockian way) to leave us in a state where even an 'average summer' is capable of giving us the lowest ice volume on record........and if we suffer another 'perfect storm'?

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What I find more fascinating is the comments under the article, its amazing for such a scientific certainty that the pro AGW proclaimists would have us believe that their are some many dissenters?

Why is it? All through the history of scientific progress every single major scientific discovery has been greeted by public dissent. From the discovery that the Earth in fact goes around the Sun, to Evolution, to, well, AGW. Getting people to change their mind IS difficult - and I'm no different from anyone else in that respect. The key to it is data and evidence not politics.

Even UFOs have greater public support then AGW yet we keep being told how unanimous the opposite is true.

I'm, not sure I'd want to use the example of people believing (despite there being no concrete evidence) in alien visitations to further my case.

Could it be that people are just not happy to believe governments after all they just told us they did not realise the credit crunch was coming :aggressive:

Whether a science theory is right has nothing to do with politics. But your implication seems to be that if govt told us there are aliens visiting us that therefore in fact they were not, or indeed if govt told us AGW is wrong therefore it would be right :lol:

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Perhaps the primary reason for 'mass sceptisism' is that the majority of folk actually have the wit and ability to work it out for themselves - ever considered that scary possibility,TWS? The PTB clearly haven't and they can detect the first rattlings of their ivory cages.

What an incredible thought, laser: Mr/Ms/Miss/Mrs Average, with probably not even an iota of scientific knowledge past GCSE, knows more about climte change than does your average climate scientist...Trully eye-opening, I must say! From now-on, I'll always remember to check the tabloid press before forming any opinion about society's weightier matters...

I am very sceptical of the amount of warming that can be blamed on humanity; with all the inherent uncertainty involved, how can one be anything but sceptical! But, that's scepticism in its proper sense - not just a blinkered unwillingness to accept anything other than the Party line! :aggressive:

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What an incredible thought, laser: Mr/Ms/Miss/Mrs Average, with probably not even an iota of scientific knowledge past GCSE, knows more about climte change than does your average climate scientist...Trully eye-opening, I must say! From now-on, I'll always remember to check the tabloid press before forming any opinion about society's weightier matters...

Some things are so blindingly obvious that a Mensa membership isn't necessary to furnish an understanding as the veil slips from a mass of collective eyes! As for the tabloid press,I've often said that they are responsible for the up-to-now belief of AGW amongst the great unwashed. Boy they've a lot to answer for,I'll agree with that! And in a few short years from now,how much of the cooling will be,yawn,blamed on humanity?

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Well, everything always seems obvious if the reasoning behind it is of the form "A is true because A is true",...

It is pretty obvious that the tabloid press and politicians use AGW as an argument to further other agendas, but that doesn't make it obvious that AGW doesn't exist. All sorts of things, both true and untrue, are regularly used as excuses to further other agendas.

And if there's anything "obvious" about the science that suggests AGW doesn't exist, I haven't seen it. I've seen plenty of stuff which casts doubt on whether it's as big an issue as mainstream predictions say, but nothing conclusive that refutes it out of hand.

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Some things are so blindingly obvious that a Mensa membership isn't necessary to furnish an understanding as the veil slips from a mass of collective eyes! As for the tabloid press,I've often said that they are responsible for the up-to-now belief of AGW amongst the great unwashed. Boy they've a lot to answer for,I'll agree with that! And in a few short years from now,how much of the cooling will be,yawn,blamed on humanity?

If whatever-it-is that so 'obviously' negates all of AGW in one fell swoop trully does exist...Pray tell us - what is it? :)

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http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-11...-emissions.html

I agree that the headline is rather sensationalist, but please read the entire article. Whilst I agree wholeheartedly that much has to change, in all aspects of our lives, to do it in the name of "reducing carbon emissions" (for which read "reducing global warming" and please don't anyone say that it is just me reading it that way) is pathetic. Talk about jumping onto a collapsing bandwagon. If these institutions just carried out the changes without banging on about carbon emissions all the time, people like me wouldn't be driven nuts. :)

I have always said that we must clean up our act and stop pillaging our planet's resources, but sometimes I think if I hear the words "carbon emissions", "carbon footprint" "man-made global warming etc., etc., much more, I shall go and produce loads of it just to retaliate. Well, I wouldn't really, but you know what I mean. Well, some do, I'm sure.

Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr

rrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr. :):)

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If whatever-it-is that so 'obviously' negates all of AGW in one fell swoop trully does exist...Pray tell us - what is it?

Presumably, Peter, that this winter is somewhat colder than recent ones. I feel cold ergo there is no global warming. It's pretty obvious to anyone with an ounce of common sense, isn't it? Oh, and because Christopher Booker says so in the Telegraph, and even produces lots of scientific...um....thingummy-whatsits to back his view.

For what it's worth, LG, there may be good reasons for scepticism about some of the Steig study - I'm still slowly ploughing through the mass of expert opinion on that, though so far it's looking better to me than I initially thought (have a look at the discussion linked by android, http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archi...#comment-110550 ). Even if it does turn out to be suspect, however, it won't negate the rest of the evidence, any more than Inhofe's extreme politicized opinion negates the more reasoned and reasonable evidence for scepticism on your side. It is the balance of the valid scientific evidence that I constantly try and assess, and right now - for me - it's in favour of AGW, at least in significant part.

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Brilliant post, NickB! Well written, well argued, well balanced. What more can we want? Just the kind of input that this thread needs, IMO. Thank you!

Would PM a thank you to you and pottyprof but don't know how, so, anyway, thank you... I hate writing stuff like this because I always want to edit. Then reading it back also... Also, it wasn't qualified in any way with any evidence, so not much substance. Just how I see the issues as I thought about it as I read other people's posts.

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Just heard Obama make a few enemies. Lots of talk of tackling climate change, stopping greenhouse gas emissions, helping US car industry produce low energy cars to break their dependence on foreign oil (no more going to war?) making homes more energy efficient........maybe he read Jim's letter then?

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I can see where Noggin is coming from with that link, but again, it has absolutely nothing to do with whether or not AGW exists. The unfortunate reality is that the relevant authorities seem to be more interested in tokenism than in actually thinking through what kind of productive measures should be taken. By that, I mean long-termist measures that clean up our act to the greatest extent while requiring the minimum amount of self-sacrifice from humans. Instead, these tokenistic measures tend to involve short-termist measures, esp. draconian restrictions that annoy lots of people and, in the large scheme of things, barely scrape the surface when addressing the problem.

I have little doubt that the same kind of short-termism would prevail if the main argument for these things was "become more sustainable" rather than "reduce CO2 emissions".

I can't really fathom why "politicians use AGW as a reason for making changes when sustainability is a much better argument to be using" is so commonly used to dismiss AGW on these threads. The argument itself is good, and I think that we do need a greater emphasis on sustainability rather than on "reducing CO2", but at the same time, it's still worth having some focus on the AGW aspect as, for instance, predictions of future climate will help to determine how much mitigation will be needed to any changes that are already locked in the system from the last few decades of activity and any subsequent activity. For example, as the planet warms, this will affect atmospheric circulation, in turn leading to changed precipitation patterns and hence changes in flood risk, and it will be good to know which areas end up with greater risk. The AGW issue is also a potential wake-up call helping encourage people to take action starting immediately, but sadly it has the reverse effect because of the community who insist that AGW doesn't exist because it doesn't exist.

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It is pretty obvious that the tabloid press and politicians use AGW as an argument to further other agendas, but that doesn't make it obvious that AGW doesn't exist. All sorts of things, both true and untrue, are regularly used as excuses to further other agendas.

TWS: I agree with this statement entirely its not the subject of AGW on trial here but the way in which politics and governments handle it. As said above its a complex subject with many uncertainties even for those who are staunchly pro, well above the average guy in the streets understanding. Even a reasonably intelligent person could watch 2 one hour tv documentaries on the subject with completely opposing views and come out of it thinking both sound plausible especially when both ask questions of the other that neither can answer. Governments have made a decision to back AGW so all of a sudden the shades of grey disappear and there is only B&W, the problem with this is that most people do possess the ability to know there are 2 sides to the story even if they don't have in depth knowledge of the science.

So now you have introduced the first elements of scepticism to the guy in the street, who is then asked to trust his government because they know best. So there you got a subject without any grey being delivered by politicians who have just lead the western world into a massive recession with the message of trust us on the economy. If that is not enough to worry the common man all of a sudden we need airport expansion and whoosh its voted through in the face of environmental opposition and in direct contradiction to its own message to the people? When you add to this Green Taxes which raise revenue for cash strapped governments I think you may just see why the guy in the street has just a small problem with the issue. He could choose like me to take a little more interest in the subject and actually look at some of the measures and agreements signed up by his government. It won't take him long to discover that past commitments on CO2 reductions have not been met and that future ones are very unlikely to be as policy does not match available resources. We could take the UK's commitment on wind energy, I read a report from the Wind turbine industry that to met the UK target alone it would take the entire worlds wind generation manufacturing industry working around the clock to do it.

I don't think the man in the street is stupid in fact given the evidence he is probably spot on, but not necessarily on AGW but certainly on the fact that if true we are already doomed and if not its just a massive revenue and alternative agenda programme. I am afraid having pondered this many times that is the camp I am in. Tongue and cheek maybe but maybe Dev is right the best way forward for the AGW is for governments to back the otherside!

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Would PM a thank you to you and pottyprof but don't know how, so, anyway, thank you... I hate writing stuff like this because I always want to edit. Then reading it back also... Also, it wasn't qualified in any way with any evidence, so not much substance. Just how I see the issues as I thought about it as I read other people's posts.

You're welcome mate... :)

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http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090125/ap_on_...s_golden_dams_3

People's homes? People's land on which they grow food? Nah, who cares? Got to get your carbon credits somehow......... :winky:

http://www.irinnews.org/Report.aspx?ReportId=82436

Thought I'd bring this one over from the other thread, too. Who cares if people can't cook or wash? Must save the environment. :winky:

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http://www.uoguelph.ca/~rmckitri/research/ispm.html

Oh, look at this! The "Independent Summary for Policymakers" is "...produced by unnamed bureaucratic delegates from sponsoring governments. Their selection of material need not and may not reflect the priorities and intentions of the scientific community...".

So, it's carte blanche for any money-grubbing government to introduce whatever taxes and policies they like, all in the name of "AGW", "GW", "climate change", "the environment", call it whatever you will.

Now we know what Gordon Brown has been reading.

I am very angry this morning. :winky:

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http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090125/ap_on_...s_golden_dams_3

People's homes? People's land on which they grow food? Nah, who cares? Got to get your carbon credits somehow......... :lol:

http://www.irinnews.org/Report.aspx?ReportId=82436

Thought I'd bring this one over from the other thread, too. Who cares if people can't cook or wash? Must save the environment. :lol:

The three gorges dam displaced more than a million people, that's a lot more than 7.500. I think that is the project you should direct you fire at?

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http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090125/ap_on_...s_golden_dams_3

People's homes? People's land on which they grow food? Nah, who cares? Got to get your carbon credits somehow......... :lol:

http://www.irinnews.org/Report.aspx?ReportId=82436

Thought I'd bring this one over from the other thread, too. Who cares if people can't cook or wash? Must save the environment. :lol:

Yes, I don't much enjoy reading the first link, Noggin. However, as the piece makes clear, the Chinese government has been ploughing ahead with masses of hydro-electric projects, great and small, for years as part of their hell-for-leather drive for ecomomic growth. All that has changed is that courtesy of carbon credit schemes they can now get the developed world to pay for them. So it may well be economic madness - but please note the transparency of the process and the continuous, open assessments of whether it is working for the benefit of the people/the planet - but it is seems unlikely that it is doing much to exacerbate the processes that upset you.

In any case, although you (and I) may find it distasteful, all the Chinese are doing is pushing forward the same radical changes we underwent in the 19th & 20th centuries - creating an industrialized, urban-based economy instead of an agricultural rural one. They believe they have the right to do that, unfettered by our romantic sensibilities, and that it is for the ultimate benefit of their people. The Brazilians feel much the same.

About the only influence we might have on how and when they do it is by having an economic input. But I completely agree that if it turns out that we are completely slewing the economics of it, and driving it forward beyond the levels they would independently go for, to the ultimate detriment of their people and their (and our) environment, than it must change. A good example of bad AGW politics.

As to the second link, please note this: "Government officials said the charcoal ban was part of an effort to halt tree-cutting for fuel, which they said was essential to fight desertification. The government has attempted to block tree-cutting in the past but has severely cracked down in recent weeks, aid workers and residents told IRIN."

However clumsily and idiotically they may be implementing the measure, the law seems a great deal less to do with climate change (the mention of which seemed to be appended to the government's statement mainly as a media-friendly buzz word) than to do with a desperate attempt to ensure that future generations of Chadians have any trees left to burn at all, and to prevent their wholescale loss making it impossible to grow food in the degraded environment.

"Who cares if people can't cook or wash? Must save the environment", you write: once you have created a desert you can't do much of either. Environment is a local as well as a world issue, a truth with which you obviously passionately agree from your reaction to the first piece.

Ossie

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http://www.drroyspencer.com/

Link to Dr Spencer's blog, in which, inter alia, he enlightens us about how, when one has retired from NASA, one can finally say what one really thinks, as have others, including Dr John Theon.

http://www.businessgreen.com/business-gree...arzenegger-eyes

"Tackling" "climate change" bankrupts California.

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http://conservativehome.blogs.com/centreri...limate-cha.html

We cannot afford anti-"AGW" policies.

Currently, 21% of a business electricity bill and 14% of a domestic electricity bill is in respect of anti-AGW policies.

By 2020, those percentages will rise to 55% and 18% respectively.

It is unaffordable.

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http://conservativehome.blogs.com/centreri...limate-cha.html

We cannot afford anti-"AGW" policies.

Currently, 21% of a business electricity bill and 14% of a domestic electricity bill is in respect of anti-AGW policies.

By 2020, those percentages will rise to 55% and 18% respectively.

It is unaffordable.

Especially considering that we'll be in the midst of massive cooling by then. Besides,government interest and policies in response to 'AGW' has nothing whatsoever to do with climate,funnily enough. Hasn't everyone twigged that,yet?

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