[ExI] [wta-talk] Richard Lindzen on climate hysteria

Alfio Puglisi alfio.puglisi at gmail.com
Fri Aug 7 22:00:37 UTC 2009

On Fri, Aug 7, 2009 at 10:50 PM, Rafal
Smigrodzki<rafal.smigrodzki at gmail.com> wrote:
> On Thu, Aug 6, 2009 at 5:27 AM, Alfio Puglisi<alfio.puglisi at gmail.com> wrote:
>> CO2 sensitivity is estimated looking at past climate trends,
>> especially from ice core data, and how the variation of the CO2 level
>> influenced the temperature (taking into account external forcings like
>> solar irradiation, etc). The numbers come out at around 3°C /
>> doubling, but there's a disturbing tail of low-probability results of
>> 6°C/doubling or more, that does not want to go away.
> ### You are familiar with the finding that for the most part CO2
> concentration *trails* changes in historical temperatures? In other
> words, CO2 is primarily forced by temperature, with only a secondary
> feedback effect (presumably) acting the other way.

I'm familiar with that finding, and it's precisely the finding that
got a lot of people worried. We know that CO2 raises temperature. The
ice cores show that, when temperature raise because of Earth's orbital
changes, after a while CO2 goes up too. So you have two effects which
increase each other, a classic case of positive feedback.

> This essentially
> precludes the use of ice core data for the purpose of estimating
> climate sensitivity to CO2.

On the contrary, it's precisely the raise of CO2 that allows the
estimation: we know how many W/m^2 the orbital forcing does, and other
feedbacks like ice sheets, etc. and thus how much the temperature
should change to bring back the Earth into equilibrium. Turns out this
insufficient to explain the ice age / interglacial cycle. The
additional warming comes from CO2, and can be quantified. That's how
the 3°C/doubling has been estimated.

>> Given that most nations didn't even follow the Kyoto protocol, I find
>> it difficult to understand how one could measure its cost. Can you
>> give me a link for that number? How was it estimated?
> http://www.junkscience.com/MSU_Temps/Kyoto_Count_Up.html

That's not estimating anything, just running a counter with numbers.
Since Kyoto has not been implemented by most countries that signed it,
I still think the cost has been near zero.

> ----------------------------
>  Also adaptation cost goes up with
>> time.
> ### Really? Why?

Because, assuming CO2 emissions go on, the warming goes on too.

> ------------------------
>> "precise" is a term that can be qualified. If you mean "precise to
>> 0.1°C in 2100" then no, we can't to that. If you mean "precise" as
>> discriminating between cooling, stationary and warming of at least a
>> few °C then yes, we can do that.
> ### These "few degC" is all that counts, since 1 C is nothing but 10C
> could be troublesome. You need to be able to predict to an accuracy of
> 1C or better, verified by observation, not curve fitting to historical
> data, to justify spending trillions of dollars.

10C is two times the difference between today and an ice age. "could
be troublesome" is a mighty underestimate. Serious effect in the short
term begin at 2-3°C, and less than that in the long term.

I think that, rather than getting a prediction down the last degree,
you have to show that bad outcomes have significant probability of
occurring. Or do you play Russian roulette often?

> -----------------------

>> IPCC reports are a summary of current scientific research. If you
>> don't believe it, there's nothing I can do, except encouraging you to
>> read it and cross-check its statements with current scientific
>> research.
> ### IPCC reports are an excerpt of data designed to support a
> particular predetermined conclusion, namely the need to expand
> government control of our lives.

I know that this list has libertarian views but, come on. Renewable
energy is a dynamic market environment with lots of startups and now
some bigger firms. Solar allows distributed energy generation by
individuals. While the technologies that should be phased out are
mostly under government control!

Leaving apart your conspiracy theories, if you think the IPCC gives a
partial view of current scientific opinion, try to find some
significant number of climate scientists with different views.


More information about the extropy-chat mailing list