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The Climate Change Thread

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Scotty, Mar 21, 2011.

  1. Scotty David Codey (61)

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  2. matty_k Peter Johnson (47)

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    I hate it how the -gate suffix is constantly used to describe anything somewhat controversial. Watergate wasn't a controversy about water it was the name of the hotel.

    Anyhoo.

    I thought it had been completely debunked and from what I read this picture sums up the whole thing quite well.
    [IMG]
    Cutter likes this.
  3. Ruggo Mark Ella (57)

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    Why put this thread in the politics forum Scotty? Politics is where the whole climate change issue is being distorted.

    That is a good video and cheers for sharing it. I am currently working an essay for my earth science unit on climate change and have come accross some good videos from a range of views. I will share them when I have more time but check this one out.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w5hs4KVeiAU
  4. Scotty David Codey (61)

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    Yeah, I think you know why it is the politics forum. Climate change has become more about politics than science, and that is one of the biggest issues. It is being used by some politicians as a reason or cover for social reform.

    Did you hear Tim Flannery the other day?

  5. matty_k Peter Johnson (47)

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    And so you are saying that because it will take so long to experience the long term effects of reducing the amount of carbon we all contribute to the atmosphere we shouldn't worry about it?
    That seems a little strange to me Scotty.
  6. waratahjesus Greg Davis (50)

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    we should just plant trees, lots of trees.

    i watched the australian climate change team or whatever there calling themselves do a q and a on sky news the other night. they said several hundred times that the intent was to be honest and explain to people from every walk of life what was happening. i have never seen a more arrogant group of people in my life though. constantly cutting people asking questions off, then if anything pointed was asked, first response everytime was "you wouldnt understand" followed by crap.
  7. Scotty David Codey (61)

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    You need to see other predictions and comments that Flannery has made to understand the context.
  8. cyclopath Phil Waugh (73)

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    Hi guys.
    Good to have a thread on this, although I won't pretend to be as well informed as most of you.
    Couple of things:- I changed the thread title, because "-gate" stuck on any topic also gives me the shits!! Of course, if there are strong objections, you can ask for it to be changed back!!! Note thread icon though.;)
    Secondly, I have seldom encountered a topic where there is quite so much bullshit, pseudoscience and hyperbole propagated by both sides as climate change. I'm not singling anyone out at all, but the points WJ and Scotty make resonate a bit. It is a shame, as the sensible voices are often drowned out by the attention seekers. I'm a cautious believer.
    Look forward to a good and spirited debate, as most discussions on this sub-forum seem to be. Sure beats the Grassroots one!
    Ruggo likes this.
  9. Scarfman Knitter of the Scarf

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    Now is a good time for me to chime in with my small contribution.

    There is a lot of debate around "climate change" but is there really debate around the essential idea of "the greenhouse effect"? That seems like rock solid science, and if true, indicates the need to reduce greenhouse gasses. Of course, Gaia could respond to increased greenhouse gasses in unexpected ways. But I'm not sure why anyone would feel at all inclined to find out. Are we really so desperate to hang onto our wide screen TVs and 4WDs?
  10. barbarian Michael Lynagh (62)

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    Was enjoying your post until I got to the word Gaia, after which I threw up everywhere. Sorry, I struggle to take people seriously after using that word.
    PTB and The_Brown_Hornet like this.
  11. Scotty David Codey (61)

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    I have a question that I don't have any idea of the answer to:

    What would be worse, in the long term for humans on earth - the earth warming by say 3 degrees, or the earth cooling by 3 degrees?
  12. Scarfman Knitter of the Scarf

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    barbarian - don't be silly. The Earth is clearly an inter-related and self-regulating system. Gaia is very uncontentious philosophy of science. If you don't like the name, tough luck - you should have got there first and named it the Chuck Norris Hypothesis.
  13. Scotty David Codey (61)

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    If Chuck Norris was the Earth he'd suck up all the carbon dioxide into his arse and blow it out all the way to the sun.
  14. Scotty David Codey (61)

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    It is a good point, Scarfy. I hardly ever read an article on climate change that mentions the greenhouse effect (in a positive or negative way). I'm not sure why this is. Will have to try and find out.
  15. Ruggo Mark Ella (57)

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    I agree with you Scotty about Flannery. I don't doubt his abilities as a scientist as he is very highly regarded in the field but I don't care much for his social commentary. You get ranting on both sides of the debate sadly. I just finished watching some footage of a lecture given by Proffesor Bob Carter and he sounded like the Alan Jones of the Scientific community. What shits me about scientists on both sides of the argument is how they present their conclusions like they were used car salesmen. These are the experts we are meant to be relying on to supply the info for us to form our own views.
  16. Cutter Nicholas Shehadie (39)

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    How Matt Burke of you Scotty.

    The science of climate change is overwhelming. It is the politics and lobbying which confuse the issue. Matty K is right about the "debunking" (unother unfortunate term used in the context of the political debate about the need for action to combat climate change).

    Scotty in answer to your question about +3C or -3C, its better that neither happens. I'm no scientist, but a material change to any system upsets the equilibrium. A system responds to those changes by finding a new equilibrium but then its a new system. This is, I believe, the Gaia to which Scarfy refers. The new equilibrium will still be fit for life, it might just be a more difficult environment for humans to survive, for this number of humans to survive or for humans to survive (in the long term) at all. We don't know. The earth's climate is a complex system and the response to changes is extraordinarily difficult to model.

    As far as I'm aware, no modelling has been done as to what would happen if the earth cooled by 3C because no one believes that is happening or is likely to happen. The modelling that has been done (to account for warming) suggests the new equilibrium would bring more extreme weather events, more droughts, floods, bushfires, rising sea levels and all the other things we've heard about.

    Given the last 5 - 10 years, some would argue we're already seeing more extreme weather events. Certainly that is the modelling the insurance companies are doing and how they are allowing for losses. Cyclones making it to Alice Springs being one example. All this being the case, what is the debate again? Let's just get on and do something about reducing carbon. I'm pretty sure this is in fact the biggest issue facing us.

    I've heard you supporting The Bald Monk's anti carbon tax rants. He has no plans to do anything meaningful though so how is it that you propose we should reduce carbon? Someone has to move first. It will be something of a pyrrhic victory for the economic conservatives if, worried about the economic cost of acting first, we wait for everyone else to move on climate change and then, based on the only serious modelling as to the consequences of not acting or delayed action, it costs us far more than it would to act now.
  17. waratahjesus Greg Davis (50)

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    as an uneducated science regular joe following this, i find this statement hard to accept. when they say they have recorded temps for 150 years and can see trends, they seem to have recorded these temps in at least 4 very different ways so the data collected is absolute shit and cant be compared.

    then you have scientists rushing to get there point across in the hope that people will name it after them or governments will give them money. As sure as a weatherman somewhere in this country tonight will predict tomorrows weather incorrectly and the guy who was on the telly for an hour over my lunch today says he has studied plates and can predict earthquakes all over the world but missed christchurch and japan without explaination. it just seems like the science is benifitting science.

    i honestly cant see how either side can say they are right, and i wait in the middle sure to be taxed but told its for my benifit.
  18. Scotty David Codey (61)

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    Cutter,

    Firstly, not sure you do your side of the debate any favours by calling someone a ‘Mad Monk’, and secondly, you clearly prefer to lecture rather than debate, as you seem intent on ignoring at least 50% of what I write about carbon dioxide taxation (we would do well to remember it is a carbon dioxide tax, not a carbon tax). I have previously suggested the way I would go forward in a few different posts, the fact that you ignore this and instead choose to question my attack on this particularly carbon tax plan says more about your inability to consider other options!

    I have a question for you – Do you honestly believe that this carbon tax plan is going to make any real difference to the carbon dioxide output of this country?

    These are the four worst policies of the Gillard and Rudd governments, and how I feel they could be done a lot better:

    1. BER – Spend about 50% of what was spent, but allow the schools to spend it on what they feel they need the most (not just school halls to put a government sign on). Classrooms, tuckshops, airconditioning – anything regarding school infrastructure.
    2. Mining Tax – It is truly to ensure we share in the proceeds of finite resources, then make it a tax on all mining – not just coal and iron and not just on ‘super profits’. Tax each resource at a set rate, and re-invest the money raised in R & D and manufacturing as well as infrastructure improvements. Don’t pick and choose winners and losers.
    3. NBN – We don’t need fibre to the premises. Just spend the $5B or so to upgrade fibre to the hub then let any further extension of this be dictated by the market. Don’t rush out and spend $30 B odd more than what is required at a time where our finances are already on the edge (and the world is on the brink of a double dip recession).
    4. Carbon Tax – Implement a small tax – no concessions and no rebates. How can behaviour change if sectors of society and business can go along on their merry way with no repercussions. Make no mistake, this tax plan will end up being more about wealth redistribution than reducing climate change. A small tax to be completely and solely invested into R&D in clean tech and energy efficiencies – geothermal, wind, wave, solar, nuclear etc. Find savings in other parts of the budget (some noted above) to further increase this investment.

    Let’s say that you are correct, and this is biggest threat or issue of our time (what was Rudd’s line?). Starting at that basis, and considering how far down the track we are with increased emmissions already, it is my firm belief that the only thing that will save us is technology or the earth itself. We either come up with a way, via technology to reduce or convert emissions (eg taking emissions from coal power stations and feeding them into some sort of large scale greenhouse farm for increased yields – just a pie in the sky, but who knows), or the earth itself will find a new equilibrium and filter the system itself. This cannot be achieved by a minor tax that ends up being circled back through the system to low income earners or manufacturing companies, particularly when the rest of the world is not partaking (see how it is going for the likes of Spain).

    Oh, and finally, build a couple of nuclear power stations. The ridiculousness of our situation in selling uranium but not using it is very difficult to understand.
  19. Ruggo Mark Ella (57)

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    The science of climate change is most certainly overwhelming. The problem lies in the debate as to whether it is manmade or not. In the history of Earth, the current warming trend has happened in the past but the time of industrialised human society correlating with this warming period represents such a small sample size of the data but on the other hand industrialised human society is unprecedented. I don't know if the current warming trend is a result of industrialised society or not and on that basis I tend to sit on the believers side of the debate from a precautionary stand point. Should we be causing the warming trend I sure like to think we are going to make an attempt to fix it?

    The worst thing Labour did was to get into bed with Ross Garnaut who I have no respect for what so ever and the worse thing the Coalition has done is install a leader who is on the record as saying "climate change is crap". This is a far too narrow view on what is a complex issue and the one piece of consensus amongst the scientific community is that climate change is real. The cause is the issue.
  20. cyclopath Phil Waugh (73)

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    I am far less informed than most on this thread (to my shame, I admit) but I agree with notion that climate change is real, and is certainly contributed to significantly by us. What I find curious are such anomalies as the Mini Ice-Age, which developed reasonably quickly and lasted a couple of hundred years. Clearly changes can occur relatively quickly without us pouring CO2 into the atmosphere.
    The Carbon Tax I find a strange concept, where the complexity of concessions and rebates seems self-defeating. The concept Scotty suggests makes more sense to me.
    The NBN (which I realise is not really on topic in this thread) seems to be heading into the massive white elephant sanctuary, with the predicted cost blowouts. Again, the model espoused by Scotty makes more sense to me.

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