Sep 15, 2016

SLEEPWALKING TOWARD OBLIVION - OUR COLLECTIVE FROG IS BOILING AS WE SOAK IN DENIAL

THE ABILITY TO IGNORE DIRE WARNINGS OF A COMING APOCALYPSE WILL BE THE DEATH OF THE EARTH AS WE KNOW IT.

WE ARE FOOLING OURSELVES
When a frog is placed in a pot of cold water heated slowly on a stove, the frog will die as it adapts to the increased heat. We are the frog. Key scientific groups with dedicated and knowledgeable climate scientists have slowly been raising the temperature with their diligent research and peer reviewed reports. These scientists consistently err on the side of the most conservative assessment. The peer review process waters down the language to the lowest common denominator. The process adds 2 to 5 years from data collection to final publication. Scientific language is notoriously dull and dense -a sleep inducing description of the coming apocalypse. We are unconcerned.

The well funded denier machine paid millions by fossil fuel interests is staffed by the same people who successfully added decades to effort to tie tobacco to cancer. "Think tanks" and "conservative" Foundations like The Heritage Foundation successfully allow Senator Jim Inhof of Oklahoma cover for his claim that the Bible proves man-made Climate Change is The Greatest Hoax. This senator from Exxon backed by Koch Industries may be more extreme but he and his party are all on board with their financial backers. After all the fossil fuel industry is the most powerful and wealthy in world history.

The task of deniers is simple - DO NOTHING. A slow moving apocalypse revealed by scientific methods is difficult to identify, more difficult to prove, and almost impossible to sell when the last thing scientists want to do is to market and sell. Most scientists are notoriously bad speakers and presenters.when it comes to promoting an idea. They speak in a foreign language using technical terms while laboring under a false illusion. Held to the same standard as politicians they insist on presenting all the facts without providing a vivid 45 second sound byte to fit the 24 hour news cycle and they are losing the battle to save our planet.
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Al Gore managed to grab our attention prior to falling victim to a bogus manufactured attack on a tiny portion of the data in his Inconvenient Truth. Deniers took some email text out of context to cast doubt on the CO2 numbers and got to play their card in network "equal time". The media gives equal time to "balance" reports but there is no way to balance 95% of Climate Scientist vs the paid shills of Fossil Fuels with a 50/50 time allocation. Never mind trying to balance scientific fact vs total bullshit. In a country where "government is the problem lawmakers" are granted unlimited funds - the chance to fix problems caused by the fossil fuel industry approaches zero. We are the bad guys in this fight - the country where the carbon footprint of citizens is the largest in the world. We are losing our planet and the future for our grand children to greedy lying bastards.

CLICK ON ANY IMAGE TO SEE THE DETAIL

Amazing grid of fracking sites in Utah
Using Google Earth it is a simple task to see examples of man's impact on the Earth. This image of the vast coverage of fracking sites in Utah is one example. These fracking sites release measurable amount of methane - more powerful than CO2 as a greenhouse gas

Even when we can actually see serious evidence that should shock us into action, we will either gasp or yawn, but either way we soon forget and move on. Our attention span is limited and the things we find to distract ourselves are limitless.

RISING SEA LEVELS PREDICTIONS AND EXPLANATIONS 
The problem isn't just limited to small island nations like the Maldives that could be almost completely underwater by 2100., A recent paper by James Hansen and 16 other scientists warned that even if countries worldwide are able to slow global warming to the ambitious level of two degrees Celsius above pre-1900 levels, we could still be in for disaster. Hitting that target could still leave places like New York City, London and Bangladesh completely uninhabitable. 
The paper by James Hansen et al was first submitted in June 2014. The typical peer reviewing system used by most reputable scientific groups takes over 9 months so the final draft was released in late March 2015  A research article for ATMOSPHERIC CHEMISTRY and PHYSICS titled Ice melt, sea level rise and superstorms: evidence from paleoclimate data, climate modeling, and modern observations that 2 °C global warming could be dangerous is not going to attract the rapt attention of news consumers. The name James Hansen should be burned into the public consciousness since this former NASA Climate Scientist is the most accomplished person in his field of work and study. Here from the abstract are the highlights:


READ CAREFULLY; THESE CONCLUSIONS ARE EXPLOSIVE 

Received: 11 Jun 2015  Published in Atmospheric. Chem. & Phys. Discuss.: 23 Jul 2015
Revised: 17 Feb 2016  Accepted: 18 Feb 2016  Published: 22 Mar 2016  NOTE the 11 June to 22 March delay imposed by peer review process that makes the "news" somewhat obsolete. Add the time required to acquire, model, parse, combine, and collate the data and this most recent news concerning warming and melt runs approximately 4 to 5 years behind data collection in a science that is seeing rapid acceleration. 
Abstract. Southern Ocean surface cooling, while lower latitudes are warming, increases precipitation on the Southern Ocean, increasing ocean stratification, slowing deepwater formation, and increasing ice sheet mass loss. These feedbacks make ice sheets in contact with the ocean vulnerable to accelerating disintegration. We hypothesize that ice mass loss from the most vulnerable ice, sufficient to raise sea level several meters, is better approximated as exponential than by a more linear response. Doubling times of 10, 20 or 40 years yield multi-meter sea level rise in about 50, 100 or 200 years. Recent ice melt doubling times are near the lower end of the 10–40-year range, but the record is too short to confirm the nature of the response
The feedbacks including subsurface ocean warming help explain paleoclimate data and point to a dominant Southern Ocean role in controlling atmospheric CO2, which in turn exercised tight control on global temperature and sea level. The millennial (500–2000-year) timescale of deep-ocean ventilation affects the timescale for natural CO2 change and thus the timescale for paleo-global climate, ice sheet, and sea level changes, but this paleo-millennial timescale should not be misinterpreted as the timescale for ice sheet response to a rapid, large, human-made climate forcing. These climate feedbacks aid interpretation of events late in the prior interglacial, when sea level rose to +6–9 m with evidence of extreme storms while Earth was less than 1 °C warmer than today. 
Ice melt cooling of the North Atlantic and Southern oceans increases atmospheric temperature gradients, eddy kinetic energy and baroclinicity, thus driving more powerful storms. The modeling, paleoclimate evidence, and ongoing observations together imply that 2 °C global warming above the preindustrial level could be dangerous
Continued high fossil fuel emissions this century are predicted to yield: 
(1) cooling of the Southern Ocean, especially in the Western Hemisphere; 
(2) slowing of the Southern Ocean overturning circulation, warming of the ice shelves, and growing ice sheet mass loss; 
(3) slowdown and eventual shutdown of the Atlantic overturning circulation with cooling of the North Atlantic region; 
(4) increasingly powerful storms; and 
(5) nonlinearly growing sea level rise, reaching several meters over a timescale of 50–150 years. 
These predictions, especially the cooling in the Southern Ocean and North Atlantic with markedly reduced warming or even cooling in Europe, differ fundamentally from existing climate change assessments. We discuss observations and modeling studies needed to refute or clarify these assertions.
When reading the final sentence the "reduced warming or even cooling in Europe differ fundamentally from existing climate-change assessments" could lead some to relax, thinking things are better than expected. But that would be wrong

The entire article is available in Pdf  form HERE and is filled with the charts and data that support the predictions and conclusions. Hansen's team is saying that 1%C temp rise we are approaching will be enough to push the precarious West Antarctic Ice Sheet into accelerated meltdown. His 50 - 150 year timetable could already be too conservative given the feedbacks, rate of acceleration, and:

REMEMBER THE BUILT IN DELAY AND CONSERVATIVE SLANT OF PEER REVIEW

PAST PREDICTIONS WERE WELL FOUNDED 
                       A few years ago the images of glaciers in retreat or completely vanishing were a graphic reminder of the results of warming. We woke up for a month or two and bought some florescent bulbs.
 We continue to rape the Earth with abandon in search of coal, gas and oil as we can see for ourselves. There’s nothing quite like  historical photos of glaciers to show what a dynamic planet we live on. Alaska’s Muir Glacier, like many Alaskan glaciers, has retreated and thinned dramatically since the 19th century.
This pair of images shows the glacier’s retreat and thinning from 1941 to 2004, the front of the glacier moved back about seven miles while its thickness decreased by more than 2,625 feet, according to the National Snow and Ice Data Center. Next image shows 26 miles of retreat.
While historical photos like these show change over many decades, satellites are giving us a better understanding of how Earth’s ice cover has changed in the more recent past. The satellite era, beginning in the 1970s, has given us a picture of accelerating ice changes in places like Alaska, Greenland and Antarctica, where the loss of land-based ice is contributing to global sea level rise.
Forty-six gigatons of ice from Alaskan glaciers was lost on average each year from 2003 to 2010. That’s according to data from NASA’s GRACE satellite, as analyzed by a team of scientists from the University of Colorado at Boulder. This information is now so common it is ignored by mainstream media. 

Deniers said the glaciers would return — that the retreat was part of a normal cycle. Regrettably the Climate Scientists were correct once again. But right or wrong the Republican sheep follow the lead of the Fossils in control of the wealthiest most damaging industry on our planet. They would see their grandchildren dead before yielding a dollar of their buried carbon profit. 
SO WE CONTINUE TO INCREASE OUR CO2 OUTPUT AND DAMAGE THE PLANET


TAKE A TRIP WITH GOOGLE EARTH AND FLY OVER THESE TROUBLE SPOTS 


West Virginia Mountaintop Removal 
Take Google Earth and fly over the areas around Appalachia, Va, and  Carbon W Va to see mountaintop removal from space. Or the area around Montrose and Pittsburg, PA for 7,788 wells. Then west of the Cascades from CA to the NW Territories to see the vast array of clear cut forests. These areas lay waste to the Inhof  "hoax" claim "that there are some people who are so arrogant to think that they are so powerful, they can change climate."

Virginia Coal Mining from Space
     But man is obviously changing the face of the planet so dramatically it can be seen from space From the Amazon forest to the vast pit mines of Africa and Canada we can see areas so vast and ugly it boggles the mind. The outrageous worst examples of the tar sands in Alberta and the BP Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico are not aberrant outliers in the grand scheme of man's impact on the planet and thus climate change - they are simply the prime examples. We build massive machines and rape the land for coal, gas, lumber, ore and oil without any cost or penalty for companies who profit without regard for the Earth or our grandchildren.
Are we powerless to stop this insanity? At what point will we figure out that the lives and well being of our children and grand children outweighs the profit and false economic arguments of the Fossil Fuel killers who are going to doom our offspring to a disaster?  What is worth fighting for if not a future for those we brought into this world?  We have to stop this NOW.  We have to get mad. We have to get active. We have to stand up and demand an accounting. Those who speak of personal responsibility have to start taking responsibility for the damage they are causing. 

BP DISASTER
AMAZON DESTRUCTION

  























THE UNEXPLAINED IGNORANCE OF ATHABASCA WHERE MORE ENERGY IS EXPENDED THAN PRODUCED AT A DRASTIC ENVIRONMENTAL COST

 Perhaps the most dramatic images of man's impact on the Earth is the hideous scar in Alberta Canada You can see the Tar Sands spreading like a Cancer from Space. It is VERY destructive.
Tar sands,” located north of Edmonton, releases at least three times the CO2 emissions as regular oil production procedures and will likely become North America’s single largest industrial contributor to climate change.
 In the Athabasca Valley. To extract each barrel of oil, the industry first cuts down the forest, then removes an average of two tons of peat and dirt that lie above the oil sands layer, then two tons of the sand itself. It must heat several barrels of water to strip the bitumen from the sand and upgrade it, and afterwards discharge contaminated water into tailings ponds that cover around 50 square miles.Last April some 500 migrating ducks mistook one of those ponds, at a Syncrude mine for a hospitable stopover, landed on its oily surface, and died. 
 Producing a barrel of oil from the oil sands produces three times more greenhouse gas emissions than a barrel of conventional oil. In 2004, oil sands production surpassed one million barrels per day; by 2015, oil sands production is expected to more than double to about 2.2 million barrels per day. To illustrate, a Honda Accord burning tar sands gasoline has the same climate impact as a Chevy Suburban using conventional gasoline.

When we can observe the impact of man on the Earth from space it is easy to understand how man can cause Climate Change. These images have more impact than the dry numbers of statistical analysis or even the dramatic charts that show the stats in graphic style. The 400ppm count of CO2 has been breached despite dire warnings. And the average temperature measurements across the globe is clear irrefutable evidence of the influence. Still the deniers linked with Republicans and for some unfathomable reason the "Christians" are dead set on their tragic course to make the Earth a very scary place to be sometime this century. 
Part of it comes from the 50 to 100 years estimates of sea level rise that will submerge most of Florida and coastal cities like New York, Boston, and Washington D.C. As rising waters flood the coast the inhabitants will already be migrating to higher ground stressing the ever diminishing food supplies. Look at that newborn grandson or daughter and know when they reach 50 their world will be a dark and dangerous place. But evidently that does not cause consternation enough - so here's news flash for you. That 50 year point may be way too conservative. 

SCIENTISTS CONFIRM MULTIPLE RECORDS BROKEN IN 2015  DO YOU GET THIS YET? 

NEW GREENHOUSE GAS RECORD 
NEW GLOBAL AVERAGE TEMPERATURE RECORD 
NEW UPPER OCEAN TEMPERATURE RECORD
NEW HOTTEST YEAR ON RECORD 
NEW GLOBAL SEA LEVEL RISE RECORD
NEW LOW ARCTIC ICE COVER RECORD

BUT DONALD J TRUMP AND HIS REPUBLICAN FOSSILS ARE STILL IN DENIAL

CA CENTRAL VALLEY WATER SHORTAGE
You've seen the news.  California has been in unprecedented drought for five years - unless you are Donald Trump. The vast food producing area of the central valley is faced with record shortages of water as the aquifer subsides.    
A recent study from NASA satellite data shows that of Earth's 37 largest underground aquifers, 21 have been depleted beyond their point of sustainability. That stress could leave millions with diminishing access to fresh water. Of course the AMERICAN THINKER jumps through hoops to try to support Trumps "no drought" claim and Trump is quick to deny all claims of climate change. Except when he wants to build a wall  in ScotlandRepublicans are suddenly very worried about our jobs. They claim any concerted effort to covert to renewable energy like Solar or wind will cost jobs - despite the FACT that a WWII type full blown build and install solar panels and wind turbines effort could employ millions of Americans. We can afford Trillions for a failed war on drugs and more trillions to attack Iraq in a failed anti-terrorist effort. But we cannot afford to save the planet from climate change?   


This apocalyptic scenario illustrates why the goal of limiting temperature rise to 2 degrees Celsius is not the safe “guardrail” most politicians and media coverage imply it is, argue Hansen and 16 colleagues in a blockbuster study they are publishing this week in the peer-reviewed journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics. On the contrary, a 2 C future would be “highly dangerous.”
If Hansen is right—and he has been right, sooner, about the big issues in climate science longer than anyone—the implications are vast and profound.
Physically, Hansen’s findings mean that Earth’s ice is melting and its seas are rising much faster than expected. For half a century, climate scientists have seen the West Antarctic ice sheet as a sword of Damocles hanging over human civilization. The great ice sheet, larger than Mexico, is vulnerable to disintegration from a relatively small amount of global warming, and capable of raising the sea level by 12 feet or more should it break up.
 Researchers long assumed the worst effects would take hundreds of years to occur. Now, new research suggests the disaster scenario could play out much sooner.
 Continued high emissions of heat-trapping gases could launch a disintegration of the ice sheet within decades, according to a study published Wednesday, heaving enough water into the ocean to raise the sea level as much as three feet.
 With ice melting in other regions, too, the total rise of the sea could reach five or six feet this century, the researchers found. That is roughly twice the increase reported as a plausible worst-case scenario by a United Nations panel just three years ago, and so high it would likely provoke a profound crisis within the lifetimes of children being born today.
So the worst case scenario 3 years ago is now doubled and the time frame is now seen within this century. And here's the real scary thing: that assessment is based on data collected back in 2000 - 2013, modeled in 2014, presented June 2015 and finalized for report Mar 22, 2016.  So given the rapid acceleration in the estimate from the 2012 IPCC findings to this current report — it is valid to predict a similar acceleration in the 4 years since the data in this report was collected. 
WEST ANTARCTIC ICE SHEET GLACIERS
THE THERMOCLINE & WARM WATER MOTION
What if we are now looking at a collapse of the West Antarctic ice sheet discussed here in 2030 - 2050 instead of closer to the end of the century? Would that be enough to get us to focus? 

This Is What a Holy Shit Moment for Global Warming Looks Like

West Antarctica is just the beginning. According to glaciologist and Greenland expert Jason Box, when you compare where we are now to where atmospheric carbon dioxide levels and ocean levels stood in past warm periods of Earth's history, you can infer that human beings have already set in motion 69 feet of sea level rise.

Naomi Klein: How science is telling us all to revolt

Back in 2013 Naomi Klein wrote: 
Serious scientific gatherings don’t usually feature calls for mass political resistance, much less direct action and sabotage. But then again, Werner wasn’t exactly calling for those things. He was merely observing that mass uprisings of people – along the lines of the abolition movement, the civil rights movement or Occupy Wall Street – represent the likeliest source of “friction” to slow down an economic machine that is careening out of control  Werner's presentation was titled: Are We F**ked. 

Hansen and a group of colleagues make the case for why radical action is needed. The now commonly embraced international target of keeping global warming at a maximum of 2°C above pre-industrial levels—a hard-won, but politically negotiated goal—is actually much too high, Hansen says, and we should instead aim for 1°C the highest level ever experienced over the 10,000-year course of human civilization.


Why 1°C is the danger level 
Hansen’s main point is simple: If the Earth hasn’t experienced temperatures warmer than 1°C as a result of natural climate variability for at least the last 100,000 years, Beyond that point, things start to unravel pretty quickly. Environmentalists have dubbed this acceleration of warming “the wheelchair curve“:

As warming crosses 1°C, Hansen and his colleagues’ research shows that additional heat is stored mostly in the deep ocean, That essentially locks in further climate change, even if emissions are drastically reduced later on,  Additional warming will also begin to trigger feedbacks (melting permafrost, thawing methane) that will unleash additional greenhouse gases and drive further warming.

As warming approaches 2°C, it locks in an additional 10-20 meters of sea level rise over the next few hundred years—enough to flood every coastal city in the world. Ecosystem collapse would be virtually assured, as plants and animals that have evolved into precise niches over hundreds of thousands of years are forced to adapt to new conditions in just a decade or two.

The problem with all of these last articles is their age (2013) and the data that induced them from 2000. The thing that seems to be reliable are the accelerating effects we have noted over time. As things move faster the time required to acquire data - model it - write it up - place it for peer review - finalize it with changes - and present it leaves us in a loop where we are always behind. The events that make us notice something outside our boiling pot come and go. We offer some lip service - listen to deniers blunt action - and go back to business as usual 

Get ready for a few million new neighbors if you live away from the coastal areas 

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