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Saturday, January 05, 2008

Comment Interaction

My last post received a comment to which I would like to respond here rather than in the comment section. This blog welcomes comments from and interaction with its readers because that is part of learning and/or teaching. This blog would be just so much breath in the wind if it lacked readers. Commenting readers make it that much better.

Dan asserted, "Your percentages are irrelevant." On the contrary, I will always contend that facts are always relevant. The numbers I posted are facts which have been determined to conform to reality by repeated and repeatable tests. These verifiable numbers were then adopted as standards in 1976 by the US government.

These numbers are relevant because they are the benchmark, the starting point of any serious discussion about the atmosphere and its components. It makes a significant difference if CO2 is 50% of the earth’s atmosphere or 0.0314%, because there would be a drastically different atmosphere. Human life would not exist. Earth has what it has.

If we do not know or value the correct percentage of CO2 in the atmosphere, we could not intelligently discuss the issues involved any more than our ancestors could in 1600 prior to the discovery of carbon dioxide. Facts are absolutely essential in life. Knowledge is advantageous.

Please note the commentator made two mutually exclusive statements:

"Nobody claims the air is overwhelmed by CO2 . . . There is no longer any serious dispute that we are well past the point at which CO2 causes damage and we're dumping more and more CO2 into the atmosphere every day."

The use of ricin to illustrate the potency of CO2 is overkill. It is true that the quantity of a compound may be small but very powerful because of its quality. That is true of ricin and is true of CO2, but on vastly different levels. One is a poison, the other is essential to life. For some evidence, read this, for example.

Dan is correct to say, "The important point is how much CO2 in the atmosphere does it take to cause serious harm to the climate and earth." I had already planned to post more later about the quantity of carbon dioxide and then its quality, so I will not do so here.

To evaluate Dan’s "important point," I am not the least bit interested in politicizing it. Nor am I interested in removing it from the realm of science. I am not desirous of making it a religious issue, adopting a doomsday mentality. Politicians, religionists and the media often do this. Basic facts are left in the dust of the stampede to get on Al Gore’s bandwagon. Don’t ever follow a doomsday prophet who does not walk the talk, but expects you to. Something is seriously wrong with that prophet.


Update: 01-06-08

Check out the comment below concerning an article today by Jeff Jacoby of the Boston Globe. Our friend, Anonymous, lifts out a paragraph from Jacoby that says 1998 was the hottest year on record. That record was touted here by NASA.

Jacoby may not be aware that 1998 was removed from first place by NASA as a result of the stellar work of Steve McIntyre. You should read about McIntyre’s work, but briefly, he looked at the data and figured out the data and methods used by NASA were in error. NASA was convinced and published a revised data set which you can find here, which is probably meaningless to most of us, but not to McIntyre.

The year 1934 is once again in first place as the hottest year on record. Facts mattered to McIntyre, as well as the methods utilizing those facts. If it were not for him, NASA may very well still be using skewed data and methods. So a small correction in data and methods makes a large difference.

We should note that NASA was not attempting to trick anyone. NASA simply made errors, which by the way, even scientists make.


Anonymous said...

This quote bears attention, I think:

2007's global temperature was essentially the same as that in 2006 - and 2005, and 2004, and every year back to 2001. The record set in 1998 has not been surpassed. For nearly a decade now, there has been no global warming. Even though atmospheric carbon dioxide continues to accumulate - it's up about 4 percent since 1998 - the global mean temperature has remained flat.

If even the tiniest fluctuations of CO2 were enough to cause climate disaster, you might think it would have done so. In fact, the earth and its atmosphere are not nearly as sensitive as "climate science" would have us believe. Were that the case, massive natural fluctuations would have long since already caused the end.

Anonymous said...

Also, go here to see how badly the IPCC has twisted its "consensus" claim.