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noggin

Politics And AGW/GW

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But is population growth really an issue?

I hold the view that it is not. Its the issue of land ownership and resource usage which dictates the peripheral population pressures and dependencies. We have no moral highground in the west to speak of 'developing' countries' overpopulation when our nations have so dictated their plight.

Give this a quick gander: -

http://www.sdnetwork.net/files/pdf/Too%20M...ople_%20web.pdf

I have to agree with your drift P.P. and ,though lengthy, folk should give the paper a 'gander' and see how they feel about it.

We live in a complex world but, yet again, using the developing world as our whipping boy (when it was our interventions that brought them to this point) seems a bit rich!

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I have mixed feelings on the article, but it does raise many good points. I do nonetheless reckon that population is a problem to an extent, in that the more humans we have, the less finite resources we can consume per inhabitant (this issue would reduce if we could move towards renewable resources though). But indeed, it's nowhere near as big an issue as many make out. For instance, the use of resources in the USA or Europe or Japan alone is a long way from being sustainable, so even if there were no people living in the developing countries, we would still have a very big problem.

I'm not a big fan of those draconian population limits in developing countries either. They might be partially effective, but people circumvent them- as has been demonstrated in China- and they are indeed guilty of punishing those in developing countries for problems largely not of their own making.

I prefer the approach of helping out the developing countries in their own development (in this sense, trying to work towards sustainable development in developed countries, and encouraging developing countries to develop using these, rather than going through all of the same phases of non-sustainable development as developing countries have done). And encouraging equality of opportunity for women, so that there's more of an element of them genuinely being able to choose family sizes of their own accord, instead of there being a large emphasis on women being pressured to have children or be unnatural. I'm thinking rather like Ghandi and Nelson Mandela's famous campaigns re. skin colour.

My line of thinking is: if there's less social pressure to have lots of children, surely on average they'll have less children?

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I have mixed feelings on the article, but it does raise many good points. I do nonetheless reckon that population is a problem to an extent, in that the more humans we have, the less finite resources we can consume per inhabitant (this issue would reduce if we could move towards renewable resources though). But indeed, it's nowhere near as big an issue as many make out. For instance, the use of resources in the USA or Europe or Japan alone is a long way from being sustainable, so even if there were no people living in the developing countries, we would still have a very big problem.

I'm not a big fan of those draconian population limits in developing countries either. They might be partially effective, but people circumvent them- as has been demonstrated in China- and they are indeed guilty of punishing those in developing countries for problems largely not of their own making.

I prefer the approach of helping out the developing countries in their own development (in this sense, trying to work towards sustainable development in developed countries, and encouraging developing countries to develop using these, rather than going through all of the same phases of non-sustainable development as developing countries have done). And encouraging equality of opportunity for women, so that there's more of an element of them genuinely being able to choose family sizes of their own accord, instead of there being a large emphasis on women being pressured to have children or be unnatural. I'm thinking rather like Ghandi and Nelson Mandela's famous campaigns re. skin colour.

My line of thinking is: if there's less social pressure to have lots of children, surely on average they'll have less children?

The issue is, as you mention in part of your post....the trajectory and mode of development but also that of land-distribution and ownership. The problem is that in the developing world with the onset of the 'green revolution' as well as large urbanisation programs we had the loss of food-independence for many people and the buying-up of land by larger companies, the movement and demolishing of rural settlements and urban expansion, as well as the corporatised delineation of restrictive areas for agricultural development and rural capital-control. Thus we have growth of much more dense urban populations, dependency on buying food from a select delineation of farmers on certain land with large-scale monoculture (which harms the environment and limits crop yields), and the creation of a core-periphery dependency system as the modes of basic survival are monetized (access to water, food, shelter, etc). This is the cause of much disease, malnutrition, instability, internal tensions, pollution, etc in the urban settlements that have expanded due to the destruction of land independence and agricultural independence of those in many countries. The cause is not over-population; albeit high densities and population increases have been a response to these macro-economic forces that have driven people from land and food independence.

We also need to consider how we treat the land (and have done so for very long). The measures imposed upon traditional peoples' by top-down autocratic regimes have forced a paradigm of land-usage and economic architecture onto peoples' initially resistant to it. I would also argue that greed and wastage of resources are the factors that result in depletion; not the inherent rises in population (albeit the rises in a greedy and waste-producing population is a big concern, admittedly). For example, we can look at how the millions of native american clan-systems lived in North America in balance with their surroundings and even had trade economies (different to ours mind) before the Europeans came and killed all their buffalo and reorganised their socio-economic structure in a brutal way.

An alternative system to our conventional method of agriculture is encouraging and empowering people to grow their own crops, to create local-based system of seed and crop exchange within the paradigm of permaculture.

More on the principles of permaculture: -

http://permaculture.org.au/what-is-permaculture/

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http://www.smh.com.au/national/pastors-abo...90210-832f.html

This is what tarnishes the whole AGW debate. If it's not the 'End Time' being preached from America siting AGW impacts as 'Gods Fury' you get the twaddle I've linked to above.

How can folk bow down to such a beastly Diety???? :)

A mystery to me, for sure!

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http://www.smh.com.au/national/pastors-abo...90210-832f.html

This is what tarnishes the whole AGW debate. If it's not the 'End Time' being preached from America siting AGW impacts as 'Gods Fury' you get the twaddle I've linked to above.

How can folk bow down to such a beastly Diety???? :D

If God really behaved like that; then one might as well blame or expect every other natural disaster in the world to beset countries everytime they make a morally questionnable manouevre or piece of legislation.

This, in my own belief, is not how the Divine behaves.

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If God really behaved like that; then one might as well blame or expect every other natural disaster in the world to beset countries every time they make a morally questionable manoeuvre or piece of legislation.

This, in my own belief, is not how the Divine behaves.

Indeed! If it will let us fug up the planet without a blink and then cause mayhem because of medical practises the what is it like???

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Indeed! If it will let us fug up the planet without a blink and then cause mayhem because of medical practises the what is it like???

Well there is a saying that goes along the lines; that God will not change people until they are willing to change themselves. Then it is helped along. Otherwise they choose ruin; and they reap those (more rotten) fruits by themselves.

Then again I don't think this is the place to discuss religious matters?

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I personally fall more into the "agnostic" area, but I do think that if there is a god, he/she/it is more along the lines that PersianPaladin describes. Otherwise the amount of pain and suffering in the world is hard to justify.

That article just strikes me as an attempt to use tragedies to further personal agendas- a rather repulsive stance really.

Some pretty good points re. agriculture by PP above as well, which cover areas that I haven't really thought much about. I do like the sound of more "self-sufficient" approaches being used among developing countries in particular instead of them becoming dependent on elsewhere.

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I personally fall more into the "agnostic" area, but I do think that if there is a god, he/she/it is more along the lines that PersianPaladin describes. Otherwise the amount of pain and suffering in the world is hard to justify.

That article just strikes me as an attempt to use tragedies to further personal agendas- a rather repulsive stance really.

Some pretty good points re. agriculture by PP above as well, which cover areas that I haven't really thought much about. I do like the sound of more "self-sufficient" approaches being used among developing countries in particular instead of them becoming dependent on elsewhere.

Along the lines of self-sufficient and strong local economies; such can be found in case-study example form at this website: -

http://financialpermaculture.com/Living_Ma...rmaculture.html

I think more approaches like this would be welcome in a global political and economic situation where we have increases in volatility, wealth gaps and resource scarcity.

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The New Scientist article makes reasonable points. When looking for alternative energy sources, we have to make sure that we don't create bigger problems than the ones we are solving. It is all too common among the green lobby to advocate tokenistic measures that don't actually make the situation any better.

But the Telegraph blog seems to "spin" it to try and dismiss the idea of alternative energy sources, in order to bash the concept of AGW and preach "we should maintain the status quo", which is fast turning into a pet hate of mine, having seen a centrillion articles like it.

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The New Scientist article makes reasonable points. When looking for alternative energy sources, we have to make sure that we don't create bigger problems than the ones we are solving. It is all too common among the green lobby to advocate tokenistic measures that don't actually make the situation any better.

But the Telegraph blog seems to "spin" it to try and dismiss the idea of alternative energy sources, in order to bash the concept of AGW and preach "we should maintain the status quo", which is fast turning into a pet hate of mine, having seen a centrillion articles like it.

Good points there Ian.

I do think that people should look at what wind and solar power can potentially do in reducing reliance on natural gas; for example: -

http://www.nationalwind.com/north_dakota_wind_facts

There is also a project called DESERTEC which I posted about before which involves getting concentrated solar power from deserts and delivering it to North Africa, southern Europe and the middle-east as a cleaner energy resource: -

http://www.trec-uk.org.uk/csp.htm

I discussed it with my local MP and got a letter back from Malcom Wicks (at the Department for Business Enterprise & Regulatory Reform); and said it was interesting albeit it proposed technical challenges for delivery further north into other parts of Europe. He did talk about microgeneration as possibly a future prospect; which I do agree with also. I have reservations about nuclear energy and the waste issues are not particularly palatable; also britain has had problems with nuclear power stations in the past with both Dunray in northern Scotland as well as the Sellafield fiasco.

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[email protected] the telegraph: "James Hansen, the global warming lobby's most celebrated cheerleader, has been disowned by his old mentor John Theon"

This started out when Theon made this claim: "I was, in effect, Hansen’s supervisor because I had to justify his funding, allocate his resources, and evaluate his results"

What stuck me on reading this the first time was that if you really were Hansen's supervisor you would just say "I was Hansen's supervisor". You wouldn't implant the "in effect" part as well as a justification. That just sounds like you are trying to hard to stretch a definition.

Hansen replied: "John Theon never had any supervisory authority over me. I remember that he was in the bureaucracy at NASA Headquarters, but I cannot recall having any interactions with him. His claim of association is misleading, to say the least."

Now the telegraph make the next move in a game of chinese whispers: "James Hansen, the global warming lobby's most celebrated cheerleader, has been disowned by his old mentor John Theon."

From the already stretched description "supervisor", Theon now becomes Hansen's "old mentor"

Amazing.

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http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/green-ideas-...4mk.html?page=1

A very sobering piece from The Sydney Morning Herald regarding the terrible fires in Australia.

"Green" policies.....please, can we stop the total madness and have common sense instead?

.....and if proof is required, well, here it is:

http://www.smh.com.au/national/fined-for-i...90212-85bd.html

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http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/green-ideas-...4mk.html?page=1

A very sobering piece from The Sydney Morning Herald regarding the terrible fires in Australia.

"Green" policies.....please, can we stop the total madness and have common sense instead?

.....and if proof is required, well, here it is:

http://www.smh.com.au/national/fined-for-i...90212-85bd.html

Nature has a way cleaning house - every so often there would be fire which cleared the ground ready for new growth. The natives of Australia understood this and had the same policy. Of course, the greens knew better and so basically a ban on any and all clearance was put in place to keep them happy. Guess what - all they did was build a massive bonfire.

Controlled burns, cleared zone to prevent spread between areas and clearance of dead wood are a bit safer than this out-of-control wildfire don't you think? Arson or not, a fire was inevitable.

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Again, this is not a problem common to all green policies and a reason for rejecting green policies and by extension the AGW hypothesis. What it illustrates is that we have way too much tokenism in the form of short-sighted "green" policies that cause worse problems than the ones they are supposed to be solving.

I am, on general grounds, in favour of laws against clearing, but there should be exceptions- perhaps regulating it is the solution. In particular it doesn't make sense, from an environmental point of view, to "preserve" trees from being burned in a way that leads to even more of them being burned. The irony...

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http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/green-ideas-...4mk.html?page=1

A very sobering piece from The Sydney Morning Herald regarding the terrible fires in Australia.

"Green" policies.....please, can we stop the total madness and have common sense instead?

.....and if proof is required, well, here it is:

http://www.smh.com.au/national/fined-for-i...90212-85bd.html

'Proof'? Give me a break Noggin. It's not proof it's an opinion piece! :D

My god the 'greenies' have had some foul flak about these fires - the thread on the Australian fires at 'What's up' was full of the most horrible language directed at 'greenies' (or 'enviro nazis' or whatever - take you pick of terms of abuse). One comment even muttered darkly about hanging....

But, is it the case that 'greenies' are so evil, so horrible, that they put trees before people's live or do we perhaps have to consider than Miranda Devine and the rest of the abuse throwers might, just possible, not be fully conversant with the facts?

No? OK then that makes me evil and horrible because, in a kind of way, I am a 'greenie' :D

I mean c'mon Noggin! I am not evil and horrible and I do not think that those who bluster on like Devine are unquestionably right. I think they're scapegoating.

It's not just 'greenies' who like trees. We ALL like trees! 'Greenies' aren't stupid either! We ALL know that if combustable material builds up in a forest a fire become more likely.

Where I suspect we disagree is how to deal with that problem. That disagreement does not make 'greenies' envrio nazis or murderers...

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worth reading from the chief of the Hadley Centre

http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/corporate/pres...pr20090211.html

It does make you wonder though, as to why it's taken this long for the MetO to speak out on all the outlandish claims that have been made in the past! The cynic in me say's, probably because the climate isn't doing what they said it should be doing, over the last few years. For me this is the stance the MetO should have took from the start, would have saved a lot of egg on a lot of faces, and gained far more support from skeptics!

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'Proof'? Give me a break Noggin. It's not proof it's an opinion piece! B)

Did you read what the gentleman who saved his own house said?

....and whilst we are at it, Dev.....give it a rest, will you? Could you please try to be a bit less blankety blank in your responses to my posts?

Thank you.

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worth reading from the chief of the Hadley Centre

http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/corporate/pres...pr20090211.html

What a refreshing change to see someone in a position like that being level headed. Fantastic!!!!!

Now all that needs to be done is wind the necks in of the doom and gloom society.. I wonder if the met office will be labeled liars, deniers contrairians and that sort of thing? .... Afterall, it's the sort of statement that attracts that sort of tag?

Oh yer... It's about bloody time too.. :)

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Err nothing of the sort, just offering some realism, that's all.

It strikes me that the climate scientists are in a no-win situation- if they try to be balanced they get accused of backing down from extreme pro-AGW positions, therefore "disproving" AGW, while if they preach that the science is more settled than it really is and that significant event X is because of "global warming", they're being sensationalist and therefore "disproving" AGW.

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