, +Justin Barrett
, +John Richardson
, +Niki Casselberry
(and others). Really, this is a rather silly discussion when it comes down to it. The issues aren't trivial, but I am going to go out on a limb and make a few assumptions (uh oh
). 1. None of us are objective, peer-respected climate scientists as far as I can tell; 2. This forum is not really up to the task of solving the world's climate-related problems; 3. These arguments have been around for a long time, and we are not being particularly original; 4. Since this discussion has become so long, very few people will be interested anymore. Feel free to correct me haha! Now, a couple of points of interest (I am not going to quote sources, but I think all of my points are pretty easily researchable ... I leave it to you to do your own fact-finding. I'm just that lazy:
1. We've been keeping records for a truly ridiculously
short time. So localized data about record temperatures and so forth are essentially useless.
2. Volcanic eruptions (etc) have indeed shown to spew atrocious amounts of substances into the atmosphere, many of which are toxic to life as we know it. The results aren't always short-lived (as evidenced in ice-core samples), and many of these substances have shown to have some kind
of correlation to serious atmospheric changes over the long term.
3. The Earth is still in a relatively cool
phase relative to it's lifespan, as evidenced by anecdotal and anthropological information about the known world 2500+ years ago, and archaeological data from eons ago. However, this latest "warming trend" shows evidence of being a sharper occurrence than previous warming trends, excepting that none of the previous warming trends had daily temperature averages etc etc. As such, the data cannot be used to make definitive conclusions from, only best model
type hypotheses (that could indeed be correct).
4. There is a growing body of evidence that suggests solar activity could also be associated with both atmospheric changes and climate trends. One compelling argument I enjoyed (and tend to lean toward) is the understanding that for every 0.1 degree Celsius that the top few inches of the ocean rises in temperature, x
million tons of carbon dioxide and water vapour are released into the atmosphere (note that water vapour is a greater "greenhouse gas" contributor than carbon dioxide).
5. When it comes to glaciers, yes, many of them are receding ... most
of them are receding. And they've done it before. It's happening at a greater rate than previous models anticipated. Some of that action is still mysterious and cannot be attributed directly to the classical model of "global warming". (As an aside, most of the new models that I have read take into account increased average solar activity, and the net increase in exposed earth-surface thereby accelerating the effect, etc).
6. The notion that fossil fuels are going to be depleted any time soon is a myth. It has been predicted many times in history, and each time a new technology turns the prediction on it's head. A latest example is our glut of Natural Gas in North America (and soon to be Asia, I understand). New drilling & fracking technologies have opened up vast reserves. So using the notion that "we are gonna run out!" as an argument for alternative energies isn't very effective. On the other hand, pointing out the other
nearly countless benefits of alternative energies is highly effective and will win the game in the end (in my opinion).
Ugh ... I could go on and on. Apparently I like to see myself type. I think what I am trying to say is that these arguments that always
spring up on fora such as these are not very effective at educating people or changing people's minds about something they themselves are opinionated about. All I can suggest is read more of the peer-respected science, enjoy it, and certainly do your best to make the world a pleasant place for our kids. Besides which, electric cars that are silent and super high performance are just so awesome ... haha!