[ExI] Global cooling: Arctic ice caps grows by 60% against global warming predictions | Mail Online

Rafal Smigrodzki rafal.smigrodzki at gmail.com
Sat Sep 14 19:01:05 UTC 2013

On Thu, Sep 12, 2013 at 10:33 AM, Eugen Leitl <eugen at leitl.org> wrote:

 -- we need about
> 1 TW/year effective substition rate, or 1000 new nuclear
> reactors/year equivalent for the next 40 years. We're
> deploying a factor of 100 too little,

### Because there is not enough thorium? Or because the problem is not
so dire as to make bureaucrats worry and people question them (rather
than blather about "going green")? If there is a real problem, sitting
cold in the dark, a lot of bobos and yuppies will lose their green
religion and get their priorities straight, pretty fast.

> The real problem is that surplus energy results in adaptive
> increase of numbers of potential consumers, while we've been
> in serious and accelerating overshoot for last three decades,
> cruising on inertia, building up ecological debt. The pressure
> within the pressure cooker is building. The safety valve is stuck.
> This thing is going to blow.

### Malthus was right on the money most of the time, but it looks like
now we are still in a non-Malthusian mode of growth. This may end, if
enough stupids evolve to breed on the dole, outstripping the ability
of productive humans to feed them. For now however, population growth
is a non-issue in all scientifically important areas (JENC - Japan,
Europe, North America, China).

>> 500,000,000 years at current usage levels. Isn't this, like, an
>> open-and-shut case?
> Many believe that, which is why we're in this situation.

### So you think that e.g. recoverable sources of thorium are not
sufficient to power us for tens of thousands of years? Show me your

> This is one of the ubiquitous antipatterns described in the
> collapse literature. Fire isn't real until it's burning you.
> Once on fire, rational thought completely shuts down and
> counterproductive behavior starts. Being poor makes you
> measurably more stupid, as most of your energy goes towards
> obtaining basic necessities.
### Yeah, but this is what I am talking about - collapse due to
irrational behavior, not due to energy shortages.

Aren't we actually talking about roughly the same thing?


 I'm talking
> about the CO2 emissions, and the detected outgassing of
> methane hydrate clathrates in the permafrost and shelf,
> and loss of ice, reduction of ice thickness and reduction
> of polar albedo due to loss of reflective ice. All these
> mechanisms are happening, and all of them are positive-feedback.

### If there was much more positive feedback left in the system, an
apocalyptic global warming would happen every few million years. A bit
more CO2 does not change the system substantially, since the
greenhouse effect from CO2 is already mostly saturated, and even
tripling the concentration would hardly make a difference.
> Ecosystem is not binding CO2 in any relevant numbers, at
> least sustainably. Ocean acidification is not preventable.
> Oceans will become marginal sources of food.

### No, ocean acidity varies from place to place, and from time to
time, so even if there was a minor shift in pH it would just shift the
ecological niches, not sterilize the whole lot.

Total food
> production is already stalling due to multiple factors.
> The bad old times of mass famines and starvation across
> poor areas of the world are coming back with a vengeance.

### Collapse in poor areas does not significantly affect the survival
of the industrial civilization. Just in case you wonder, I am not
inhuman. Perhaps I am just incautious enough to articulate an ugly
truth we all know.


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