Common Ground On Climate

George Washington's picture

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Peak Everything's picture

To everyone with an opinion, please read James Hansen's Storms of My Grandchildren. I am confident you will come away with a deep appreciation of 1) how complicated climate change is; 2) climate scientists really do understand what is going on; 3) CO2 from human activity has created a life threatening situation for our grandchildren.

falak pema's picture

Peak everything : my amazement knows no peaks. It keeps climbing must be the hot air effect. But it does not refer to the substance of your post, more to mind set of those who debate on limited knowledge, as if they knew it all. An intelligent man is one who asks questions all the time, not one who knows for certain all the answers. IMHO. We ARE mortals with a limited time frame, short memory bank and a high propensity to assume that what we know sums it all. 

no2foreclosures's picture

Common Ground Number Seven ~ Let's reduce or eliminate the hot air full of CO2 coming from one former Senator and VP! Let's not buy any more of this bullshit from Mr. Al "I invented the Internet" Gore and his carbon trading Ponzi Scheme. I mean the guy lives in a mansion that's 100,000 square foot! Talk about an opportunist and hypocrite of the nth degree...

theprofromdover's picture

Almost every species that has evolved on earth, is bent on self-destruction. They are only stopped from multiplying like crazy by becoming a food-source of choice for something else, or climatic conditions vary enough in a short period of time to suppress the domination. For the short time that Homo Sapiens has fancied his chances, the population has gone parabolic, and we are headed the same way as evrything else in the past. Comuppance/Comeuppnace for the 7 billion of us lot might not be far off.

Whether it is climate-change, foodstocks-depletion, Monsanto and their mischief, famine, disease or water shortages, some other interference in nature, nuclear waste, or just a simple act of God, humankind is basically incapable of agreeing what to do about it.

So adapt or die.

The bizarre way life has thrived on this earth -almost uniquely in the universe- is basically because we have a cracked shell, we are just close enough & far away from our mid-sized star, and we had a couple of moons which helped the tectonic plates move, and gave us ocean tides and currents.

The only reason we turned out like we did, is because of the volatility of the planet.

It is the mere idea that we can do such harm -pollute so badly, poison or atmosphere, kill ourselves- is why we fail. Nothing to do with fucking carbon-neutral.

If it were, even some idiot like Al Gore could work out how many trees you would need to plant to absorb the 'exess' Co2 produced by us.


Don't wait for the scientist, 90% of them are working for tenure and a pension; they are no different to the rest of society.

Carpe diem.


<<rant off>

Pullmyfinger's picture

Speaking on behalf of all Minnesotans, I support global warming.



lindaamick's picture

Global Warming/Global Cooling - the framework within which we can


Outside that framework are the real issues - Who and why are the skies filled

with particulants of aluminum and barium.  Why are we being sprayed? What are

the consequences of this activity.  I am old enough to recall bright blue, clear

skies.  I drove the US from Georgia to Wisconsin to Colorado and it is the

same story everywhere: chemtrails, glary whitish skies.  Filth all.

Watauga's picture

"There is nothing new under the Sun." 

10B people would have to work awfully hard to create the impact of a single, major, natural event, such as a major volcanic eruption.  We really aren't all that great, we humans.  We can slaughter whole populations of one another or of animal species, we can manufacture and drive SUVs to our hearts content, and we can even screw up nuclear power. . .   and we really won't have the enormous impact that so many Chicken Little Enviro-Fascists believe we have. 

Keep in mind that the Enviro-Fascists would kill off most, if not all, humans, "for the sake of the planet."  And somehow, these monsters are allowed credibility.  They would gladly trade all liberty and prosperity and life.  Please explain how they are not laughed off the stage.

topcallingtroll's picture

I propose common ground number eight. Reduce the carbon footprint of cows and other ruminants.

We all ought to decrease our beef consumption to the level of the chinese and japanese to increase our lifespan and save the planet.

nmewn's picture

Or we could shoot every deer, moose etc. on the planet as a "carbon offset"...kidding.

I am amazed that...we are constantly presented with ill defined "problems" that the presenter says we must act on immediately as time is of the essence.

The proposed actions always involve higher costs to us...either monetarily or in liberty.

If it isn't global warming its healthcare...if its not healthcare its the entire structure of debt finance...if its not finance its freedom of travel...if its not travel its what food you are permitted to eat and how much.

I've come to the conclusion that the world is nothing but a classroom where there are four old sadistic school marms posted at each corner of the room watching our every action, waiting with bloodstained wooden rulers, for one of us to smile or giggle ;-)

Brick's picture

I get the feeling that you are attacking this from all the wrong angles and missing the essential problems. First lets talk about climate models a little and what they are good at and their limitations. Climate models are based on physical and chemical properties and as such they leave little room for query. They have also proved reasonably good a modelling global temperatures over the recent past. Where climate models have their limitations is by not really building in the carbon cycle properly, not taking into account the very top most layer of the atmosphere (which might be important from a sun point of view), using rather generic parameters for the effects of some things (ozone transport and upward propergating gravity waves), miscalibrating certain feedback effects (jet shifts and the effects of cloud cover and moutain torque) and ignoring short term effects that upset trajectories. This manifests its self in climate models being rather mediocre at forecast temperatures on a continental level. In sum there is a lot more work to be done.
From a political point of view the bible is the work by the IPcc which most climate scientist largely agree with. The problem is that most climate scientists would probably disagree with the IPCC in their speialist areas suggesting the range of outcomes might be a lot wider than IPCC suggests.
Now we come to the real problem which is that politicians have skimmed climate change knowledge to pick on low hanging fruit. Climate change has become all about money rather than actually reducing the impact we have on the planet. If we look just at CO2 and the carbon cycle they look at fosil fuel burning and ignore farming, building and fishing methodologies which could possibly be as important. Badly formed strategies are developed to reduce CO2 which if you actually calculated properly actually increase CO2. This of course ignores all the other types of emissions which are harmful but would be costly for big business to put right.Common ground rules in my view should be.
1) If there are suspicions that something upsets the balance, its probably a good idea to attempt to limit the change in balance until you understand it better.
2) Rules rather than taxation would be a better curb. (Like All new houses should be built carbon neutral)
3) Funding for climate research should not be politically or industrially influenced.
4) Politicians should actually read the IPCC report, and understand the variation in views.
5) Consensus views are useful for getting action but they need to recognise variations and be able to shift(IPCC tends to aggregate in a bad way)
6) Climate science need to come clean if it suspects the impact of something is reduced (We only hear about the increases in impact).

My own take would be that I have suspicions that farming, forestry and industry and their impacts on plankton are the real big story rather than fosil fuel derived CO2, but that would not be good news for wall street or the elites, who would much rather target you.

no2foreclosures's picture

I guess you are not of the persuasion that garbage in begets garbage out. Global warming is shitty "science" if one can even call it that.

Clinteastwood's picture

Crappy post.  There is no room for consensus in the pursuit of scientific truth, or any truth for that matter.  Screw this chickified consensus nonsense. 

Let's have some leadership.

Urban Redneck's picture

Climate models are based on physical and chemical properties and as such they leave little room for query.


Let me say that again, BULLSHIT.

Here's a property for you - spectroscopy.

The climate models don't properly take into account spectroscopic propertiesof the CO2 vis-a-vis other compounds in the atmosphere which actually comprise a statistically significant portion of the atmosphere.  When compounds  with similar spectroscopic properites to CO2 are considered, the potential impact of changes in CO2 can be summarized as: NONE.


topcallingtroll's picture

Very good points.

The issue of poorly understood feedback mechanisms potentially leading to greater variability of outcome is important. One possible outcome is no global warming these next hundred years. I wish we knew the odds.

TerraHertz's picture

In the 1990's through to early 2008 I believed the AGW story absolutely, and thought it was the greatest threat Earth faced. But by 2008 I'd started to come across a few details that didn't seem to fit. Here's the final straw which made me admit to myself that AGW simply couldn't be right, and I'd been suckered:
Climate and the Carboniferous Period

In particular the chart of temperature and CO2 levels throughout Earth's history:

There's no way that chart is compatible with AGW theory. Either the chart is completely wrong, or AGW is bullshit. One or the other. As best I can determine from other sources, the chart is pretty much correct. So...

After that I began to seriously look into where the AGW idea was coming from. The CRU emails leak in Nov 2009 was a delightful confirmation of what I was finding - that the entire thing was a massive, deliberate, politically motivated scientific fraud and financial scam. Deliberate falsification and deceitful manipulation of scientific data, in pursuit of vast amounts of money.

Really, there are people who should be executed for the things that have been done. This sort of crap is simply not on. This is worse than national crimes like treason, this involved deliberately misleading all of Humankind, for the purpose of economic extortion and enslaving the entire human race to an ideology of 'one world government.'


OldTrooper's picture

Each side continues to make arguments about how the other is uninformed, corrupt or plain stupid (just look at the comments to this article).  Counter-productive measures are being contemplated, but we are too busy arguing to notice

Wow!  You must have special mind-powers or something to be able to see the future so accurately, GW!

I'll sign on with your six points.

tony bonn's picture

humans can do very little to influence global warming which has been trending in different direction for centuries - long before human population was material or meaningful....

i don't have any hard objections to the 6 points but i certainly don't need the government to help me....

eazyas's picture

So who do I pay my carbon tax's too?

ddtuttle's picture

If you're going to report science, you need to report the whole story.  The Sun is still pretty damn mysterious, so anything a solar scientist says must placed in the context of other results in the field.

Specifically, you need to contrast the one large CME event with the strangely quiet solar cycle we find ourselves in. The current solar cycle is the 24th that has been recorded.  Since they are approximately 11 years long, that's almost 300 years of data.  Somewhat counterintuitively, the more sunspots there are, the BRIGHTER the sun, so when we have fewer sunspots the sun is actually dimmer, which makes the earth cooler.  

The history of sunspots is interesting.  For a period of abut 70 years from 1645 to 1715 there were virtually no sunspots at all.  This is called the Maunder Minimum, and it coincided with the "Little Ice Age". During this mini ice age all the mountain glaciers in the Alps grew substantially.   No one really knows if the Maunder minimum and the Little Ice Age are related, but it is an obvious hypothesis to try and prove. 

However, a strong correlation between the solar cycle and temperatures here on earth has been known for decades if not centuries.  The exact mechanism is not understood, but the correlation is not in doubt.  One hypothesis is that during lows in the solar cycle the suns' magnetic field decreases and more cosmic rays reach the earth.  In fact, this effect has been measured since the 1950s. What is not known for sure is that additional cosmic rays increases the cloud cover, and hence cools the earth. This would be amplified by the known changes in the sun's intensity.   A large experiment is being done at CERN that will verify or debunk this theory.

So the current solar cycle might be a prelude to a much QUIETER period in solar activity, which would  lead to a cooler period rather than a warmer one.  Indeed, this is the hypothesis of some very prominent scientists, and is in direct contrast with your very one sided account.  The fact is, none of these guys knows what's going to happen, and for scientists that's great because at some point they're going to learn some new things, which after all is their job.

But for you to come and predict how the future behavior of the sun will affect global warming is total tripe.  You don't know, I don't know and the solar scientists don't know; however, we'll all find out together.  This anoys me because the entire global warming debate was cut short in exactly this way. Now its policy, but we really don't know half of what we need to be sure the policy is right.

BTW: I generally love your posts, so don't let a little criticism discourage you.  You need a pretty thick skin to post at ZH, anyway.

boiltherich's picture

And this is your future, I know I would not mind if anyone would come up with convincing evidence that there is a significant threat of warming from human sources and this would reverse anything, a crawler on the Bloomberg ticker I saw an hour ago said that electric utilities under the new government carbon scheme will double household bills.  I have a two bedroom apartment in a temperate region and live alone, my electric runs 100 per month and I have gas for heat and hot water.  If electric doubles then it doubles, fuck it, double gasoline again too, I will pay it and my house and car will be used exactly as they are now, but I will have a whole lot less to spend in your McStore for crap from China.  This is not about saving the world, it is about vast new sources of revenues for our owners.  Why anybody would sentimentally claim otherwise is a foolish waste of time to guess at. 

Even if we were to agree that warming were primarily a human caused carbon emission event, and we will not, but even if we did it is not about my footprint or yours, they are so small in the overall scheme of planetary environment that no one of us makes any difference at all, rather it is 7 billion footprints with about 209,000 new ones every single day.  You can trim 10% of our per capita carbon emissions and it will be eaten by population increases in a year, two at most.  Because cutting 10% is a static thing, while people live a very long time and their numbers just keep growing.  So, another way to put this is that irresponsible breeders are the problem.  Get rid of those few population criminals and you solve the problem. 

bruiserND's picture


You had better bring Dr Willie Soon into this or it smells of graft & corruption.

Canaduh's picture

The great thing about this debate is that evryone is an expert.

majia's picture

me thinks that we will not last long enough to find out...

TEPCO injects water to No.4 reactor storage pool

"Tokyo Electric Power Company has been trying to reduce a high level of radiation discovered in the Number 4 reactor of the troubled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.

…Tokyo Electric Company discovered that the water level of the pool had dropped to about 1/3 of its capacity as of June 11th. The machinery is thought to have been exposed and releasing high amounts of radiation.
The operator fears it could hamper restoration work in the Number 4 reactor.
TEPCO says the radiation level on the top floor is so high that workers cannot enter, but if the equipment is submerged again, the radiation level will decline enabling operations to restart. END QUOTE

Spent fuel dangers

tiger7905's picture

Update from Nebraska nuclear event, the Russian's are saying there is an official news blackout.

tiger7905's picture

Update from Nebraska nuclear event, the Russian's are saying there is an official news blackout.

JW n FL's picture

did anyone that does not believe in blobal warming watch the winter olympics in canada? the last one? the rain washing away the snow, at altitude.. in the canadian rockies? seriously how fucking stupid can you fucking people be? with your own eyes and still its just the liberal hippy peter smokers that are trying to tounge your ass? fuck off and die! do the world a favor! do your kids a favor, your grand kids a favor!

PLove's picture

Our weather is controlled by psychopaths using

chemtrails and scalar energy wave technologies.  


Global warming ain't in it. 






honestann's picture

The solution to everything is liberty and individualism.  Get rid of the predators-that-be, get rid of the predator-class, then we will have the most powerful solution of all.

Observe, think, adapt.

That's right.  Leave people alone.  Eliminate predators DBA government, and let individuals observe reality for themselves, and let those who form opinions take actions based on those opinions.  What do I mean?

Well, for example, if you believe the coasts will be flooded, buy "high ground" property.  If you believe the coasts will stay the same, you get to buy property on or near the beach for bargain prices.  If you believe northern latitudes will get warmer, buy [future] farmland in iceland and greenland.  Whatever.

Observe for yourself.  Think for yourself.  Decide for yourself.  Then ADAPT... for yourself.

No universal, imposed solutions.

Especially to "problems" that are 99.9999% to 100.0000% imaginary, including "mankind-induced global warming".

Of course, we never abandon real ethics but reject all so-called "mandated ethics" like carbon-taxes, (a contradiction in terms).  We know many forms of pollution that DO harm, and we do not accept them.  We reduce real pollution all the way to the point of "no problem".  And reject predators DBA government and their insatiable plans to enslave the totality of mankind.  Up theirs!

Why do we have a world full of UNSAFE nuclear power plants?  I can guarantee you this - very safe nuclear power is practical, and has been for decades.  However, the "bribe the predators-that-be AKA government" approach that has existed for decades has led to a proliferation of utterly and totally insane developments in many areas, most certainly including nuclear power.  Thus the best solution is to get rid of the predators-that-be and predator-class, not nuclear power.  However, we may need to get rid of nuclear power until the predators can be done away with.

The solution to just about everything in the world today is... to rid the world of...

predators DBA government
predators DBA corporations
predators DBA central banks

dabug's picture

These subjects should be distinct as there seems to be alot of confusion between the two while related the are not the same

Global warming

The question is not if but how much (live) humans contribute to global warming; the combined human bodymass has multiplied sevenfold over the last 150yrs and as such so has the heat that humans bodies produce.

The big question is how much heat do our lights, heaters, aircons, stoves, cars, trains, plains, factories, smelters, powerplants, flamethrowers, atomic blasts etc contribute vis a vis natural events, such as forest fires, flatulating cows etc and whether it is significant vis a vis solar radiation and cycles.

Cap and trade, also so known as emissions trading

This has to do with industrial pollution, primarily CO2 but also SO2 (the trading of which significantly reduced acid rain in US), NOx, mercury and a bunch other noxious substances.

The reality is that CO2 is the prime result of burning fossil fuels and has become a currency of sort for all industrial pollution (and yes it comes out hot and so contributes to global warming, to some extent), though this is changing as other types of pollunatnts are slowly getting a more prominent part in the horror show .


Rynak's picture

You haven't mentioned the most generic and most effective thing..... perhaps because it is NOT common ground, and highly unpopular, even though it's one of the most reasonable considerations one could make:

Efficiency. If you can achieve some kind of output, with less input, then you just permanently achieved a win-win.... the cost is just temporary effort and money to improve a procedure. Short-term considerations, and short-term profit considerations are the reason, why most of the time people prefer to throw more ressources/waste/pollution at a problem, rather than investing the work and money to just make it more efficient.

Similarily..... and this goes totally against the global dogma of greed and ever increasing consumption and production: Just stop producing and consuming stuff one doesn't really need. Do we need all the shit that is produced? Is it necessary that stuff becomes obsolete in a matter of 2 years, and then needs to be re-produced and re-consumed? I'm NOT talking about people cut down on stuff they need here! I'm not argueing for using less water to wash oneself, paranoidly monitoring which lights are on, or driving less miles.... i'm not talking about anything like that.... i'm just talking about: Is the excess on top of normal stuff necessary?

There is a pattern which i have seen being repeated over and over again, regarding humans: Above a certain level, the amount of available ressources does not matter. Once ressources go above a certain levels, humans do not use the surplus to achieve more, or as a reserve for bad times.... they just waste them - typically by trading them for lazyness (read the paragraph about efficiency again). That is: The amount of ressources humans currently tend to use, has nothing to do with what they need, or what they want to achieve - instead, they just generally use up all ressources, regardless of the amount, regardless of their needs, and regardless of what they want to achieve! If there is more than necessary, they simply use it to be more lazy when designing processes. The same behaviour-pattern applies to waste and pollution.

Stop doing that. Use what you need, and use it efficiently. Is that really too much to expect?

Sambo's picture

For those who are really concerned about the global warming problem, and I think 7 billion people on this planet should be concerned, they should watch this video:


notadouche's picture

Global Warming is sooooo bad, the government tells us that we must reduce our "carbon footprint".  However, if you pay the government enough money then you are able to leave bigfoot type prints all over the earth.  That one statement should be enough to realize that the government and the "scientist" who profit from this is total bullshit.  

If the situation is that damned dire I would hope our government wouldn't sell out our security.  Of course when the preeminant expert on the "science" happens to be a politician, Al Gore, that should scream bullshit. 

Finally, when all scientist that scream Global Warming are on the payroll of the government and that is the only way they support their science, and if the rejection of such science would lead to large scale unemeployment of useless scientist then their "science" should be held up to scrutiny without the use of negative connotation.  That should scream bullshit.

Oh wait one more FINALLY, when the evidence of Global Warming is heat, rain, drought, cold, snow, hurricanes, tornados, tsunami's, tidal waves then that should scream BULLSHIT.  It's great when every weather scenario is evidence of your science.  Gee I never knew a science that could never be proven wrong unless you count that not believing the world to be flat labled you a heretic.  

I'm just sayin.... By the way Mr Washington, excellent common sense piece.




Species8472's picture

Ok, how much of Golbal warmng is man made, what is your confidence interval and how do you know this??

Can we really do anything about it? How do you know?

If we (the US) do something and the rest of the work does not, that would make us the biggest suckers known to mankind.




zorba THE GREEK's picture

 why fight global warming? Buy land in Greenland cheap. When the rest of the world is 110 F +,

 Just think how valuable it will be.

zorba THE GREEK's picture

 why fight global warming? Buy land in Greenland cheap. When the rest of the world is 110 F +,

 Just think how valuable it will be.

dabug's picture

I went to university too, twice.

Warming or no warming, anyone who does not think that we have irretrievably damaged our environment should go for a swim in Fukishima Bay, enjoy some oysters in Louisiana, drive around any city in in the world in a droptop for the day and finish off with some roast wild boar in Germany.

If we chose to pollute then we must be prepared to pay for the cleanup, be it soot (carbon), nuclear waste, plastics, heavy metals etc

@ gwar5, if Dr Lidzen is correct then we are doomed by the first law of thermodynamics; if the thermal energy is only "mostly" being re-emitted, the planet will warm up, expand and eventually expolde...I hope he is wrong.

@ Boiltherich, I agree two out, two in, that or find another planet.



dabug's picture

@ Junker, truth hurts huh..

LivermoreJim's picture

Geologists will tell, hell wikiapedia will tell you, that we are now living in an inter-glacial -- between glacial periods, a short tempory period of warming.  Now if global man-made warming is true, and I doubt it, than it might perhaps be a blessing to save us from a global freeze.  By curbing emissions, any emissions, we might be condemning the earth to a natural coming freeze.

The geologic record of the earth shows NO stability.  It just might be that the rational thing is to counter the freeze with man-made warmth and come up with some kind of balance.

TaxSlave's picture

Gee, I guess it depends on how you define stability.  Short of a big asteroid hit, there is long-term (very long term) stability.  The oscillation might be to values we don't like, but it is pretty stable within its range.

realitybiter's picture

okay, hundreds of gallons an hour....400 for the G5.

realitybiter's picture

I will give a rats ass about global warming when the CEOs and Politicians quit burning thousands of gallons an hour in their G5's just so they can go to their vacation homes, all expensed (tax payer funded).  WSJ ran a piece last week showing that 30% of travel that is expensed is coincidentally at an airstrip near the passengers vacation home.  huh.  The masses that think they are changing the world because they squeeze into a sardine can are sure of their thinking, but deluded.  I'll care when Congress starts videoconferencing and the IRS disallows any air expense beyond coach.  Until then, let er cook.

Bicycle Repairman's picture

"I will give a rats ass about global warming when...."  the military announces some sort of conservation measures.

Ned Zeppelin's picture

Cap and trade is one of the most insidious ideas to hit mainstream thought, and should be universally mocked and reviled.

Manthong's picture

Cap and trade is evil but we seem to be getting an even greater evil in explosive fascist regulatory controls.

oldman's picture

from an ecologist standpoint, this is simply ho-hum boring. 

Tyler, you can do better than this.

New World Chaos's picture

Helios was appalled by the scheming that went on behind the scenes in preparation for the Copenhagen global carbon tax conference.  Plus, the corrupt elites with their private jets, servants and exotic food at the conference combined to produce a bigger carbon footprint than many small countries.  In response to this, Helios will take a little nap after this solar cycle and then there will be no major eruptions until the end of our next Kondratiev winter.  This will counteract the effects of global warming and make it much harder for the elites to pull off their scam.  But Helios must wake up eventually.  We have until the end of this century to mass produce cheap, decentralized energy sources (like solar paint) and deploy a swarm of tiny light-absorbing spacecraft between us and the Sun.

Stuck on Zero's picture

I think there are few things that everyone agrees on. 

1) The experiment involving dumping billions of tons of Carbon Dioxide into our atmosphere every year is a risky one. 

2) Plowing up millions of acres of landscape for coal extraction is just plain horrible.

3) Energy and its uses is the power behind our standard of living.

4) The burning of coal and oil is not good for our health.

5) Oil and coal will be valued more as industrial feedstocks than as energy.

6) Very little is actually being done to develop new energy sources.  The price of the Iraq was would have us all enjoying boundless pollution-free energy today.

7) The government is not looking for solutions ... just more control.

New World Chaos's picture

They don't want us to develop renewables, especially cheap/decentralized renewables.  They want centralized control, profits, deaths from pollution, excuses for war, excuses for global carbon taxes, etc.