Please give me back my global warming!

A week or so ago, it got down to 20F here in Butler, NJ, and I was complaining it was cold. This morning, it’s 8F (-13.3C). I’m sorry, this is downright ridiculous. Last I checked, New Jersey was still south of the Arctic Circle!

8F (-13.3C) in Butler, NJ on Feb 5, 2007

Where the hell is my global warming, damnit?!

Someone please turn the “nice weather machine” back on. Thanks!

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Comments

  1. Try wearing something warmer than a t-shirt and sandals for a change. 🙂

    You might find a sweater over your t-shirt and some socks will make a world of difference. A good toque on the head will also makes a cold day pretty nice.

    BTW, My wife still thinks you’re a wimp, but then again she grew up where they only miss school when it gets down to -40 (Which is where Mr. Celsius meets Mr. Fahrenheit). Imagine having that for a week or two every year.

  2. Steve: people don’t live in Canada. They survive in Canada. Nothing lives at -40F, except some exotic fish and other mutated wildlife.

    I’ve lived in New Jersey all my life. I’ve worn t-shirts and sandals for at least the past 10 years. This is the first winter where I’d actually consider wearing heavier clothes out of actual necessity for my safety.

    I call bullshit on all the people who think we’re causing “global warming.” The earth couldn’t care less what we do–these climate cycles have been going on for eons before us, and will continue long after we’re gone.

    But, with weather like today, if global warming is real, we’re obviously not contributing enough to it. That’s the only problem I see with man-made global warming. Not warming the earth fast enough. Brrr.

  3. Haha, what gets me is when people say it’s been the warmest january since 1913 (as it has been here in the UK) and that that proves there’s definately global warming…. surely 1913 was warmer?! – See what i mean?

    Good blog,

    Steve

  4. Regarding global warming: I agree insofar as people who attribute a warm season to global warming are being obtuse and don’t understand how global warming works.

    1. Global warming doesn’t result in a dramatic uniform warming of the Earth. The projection over the next 50 years would result in something like 10-15 degrees at the poles and something like 2 degrees at the equator.

    2. The biggest disruption in global warming isn’t temperatures because they are only predicted to change a little by our standards over the next 50 years. The biggest disruption is the effect that has on the currents which can dramatically affect weather patterns.

    For example: If it gets warmer in the poles and much of the ice on Greenland starts melting, it will melt into the Atlantic. This will change the salinity of the Atlantic which would alter the nice warm air pattern that currently warms Europe. When that stops, Europe’s weather would start resembling Canada like it did in the not so distant past. The reason for Europe’s past ice age? Canada’s ice melted into the Atlantic via the St. Lawrence dramatically changing the salinity which stopped the cyclic pattern that pulls in warm air from the gulf.

    Here’s an article that better describes it the effect a change in salinity would have on the Atlantic and why it would have that effect.
    http://naturalscience.com/ns/cover/cover5.html

    You know I’m not dogmatic about these things. However, I do tend to lend a lot more credibility to peer reviewed research than papers sponsored by Exxon Mobil. I’m not saying you shouldn’t believe the overwhelming majority of climatologists, but I would be a little hesitant about insinuating their work overlooked obvious alternative explanations.

    Regarding the question of us contributing to carbon in the atmosphere, I guess that all depends on why you don’t think the ice core studies in the Antarctic are valid.

  5. Are you telling me that we could warm up our winters by building more salt mines and dumping the salt in the Atlantic ocean? (How much salt would it take?)

    After reading the article, it seems almost inconsistent: how does increased atmospheric CO2 cause decreased ocean salinity? The suggestion that “warming” is causing increased precipitation I can understand. That precipitation must be occurring over the ocean–because if it occured over land, it would freeze on land, which wouldn’t dilute the ocean. (I spit on my driveway in New Jersey and it’s still there–it froze, it didn’t evaporate or run off into the water table.)

    Scientists can’t have it both ways. Either it’s warmer and so the precipitation and Arctic ice is melting, causing dilution of the ocean; or, it’s colder and any precipitation at all should be reinforcing the permafrost up north, which should actually cause increased ocean salinity. Either change would cause a shift in ocean density which would cause the thermohaline circulation of the Gulf Stream to change, but the belief that “global warming” causes more freshwater input into the Atlantic seems, well, ludicrous. The temperature has to be above 0C/32F in order for it to melt. Is someone trying to convince me that it’s that warm further up north? (I’d like to see evidence.)

    As I understand it, right now, theories about global warming and anthropogenic CO2 having causal effects on the thermohaline circulation of the Gulf Stream are just that: theories. Where are the real scientists that can form verifiable experiments to test and validate these theories? I can speculate about causes that might possibly affect thermohaline circulation like the best of them, but that doesn’t make my theories any more correct or incorrect than these more widely held theories. The number of people who subscribe to a theory doesn’t have any effect on its correctness. (Is the world still flat?)

    I have a hard time understanding why so many people are so quick to accept this “global warming” theory when there’s just as much real science behind it as, say, my theory of increased EM causing the Earth’s axial tilt to increase by 10^-6 degrees, causing a 20F average climate change. (I just made that up on the spot.)

  6. >Are you telling me that we could warm up our winters by
    >building more salt mines and dumping the salt in the Atlantic
    >ocean? (How much salt would it take?)

    🙂 That’s a cute idea, but I couldn’t tell if it would or how much salt you’d need to mine. If a quarter of Greenland melted over the next 100 years, I would imagine you’d need a lot of salt to offset what would account for an extra 5 feet of sea level.

    >After reading the article, it seems almost inconsistent:
    >how does increased atmospheric CO2 cause decreased ocean
    >salinity?

    It doesn’t. The melting of fresh water ice from Greenland would decrease ocean salinity.

    >That precipitation must be occurring over the
    >ocean–because if it occured over land, it would freeze on
    >land, which wouldn’t dilute the ocean.

    Your missing the element of geography in the picture. The northern latitudes become warms and experience increased precipitation. The fresh water from North America dilutes the salinity, which may stop or disrupt the thermohaline circulation which plunges Europe in an age. North America is still warm, the rain isn’t freezing and the ice is melting.

    >Scientists can’t have it both ways. Either it’s warmer and
    >so the precipitation and Arctic ice is melting, causing
    >dilution of the ocean; or, it’s colder and any
    >precipitation at all should be reinforcing the permafrost
    >up north, which should actually cause increased ocean
    >salinity.

    Sure they can. Initially everywhere gets warmer, the precipitation and melting ice contribute the dilution of the ocean disrupting the thermohaline. The thermohaline shuts off. Europe, not everywhere else, cools off adjusting for it’s latutide. This has no effect as stopping the dilution of salinity because Europe’s runoff doesn’t contribute to the thermohaline of the Atlantic.

    >but the belief that “global warming” causes more freshwater
    >input into the Atlantic seems, well, ludicrous.

    So you can understand how warming can increase precipitation (which would naturally contribute to the freshwater input) and how warming would melt ice. So what’s ludicrous about this theory?

    >The temperature has to be above 0C/32F in order for it to
    >melt. Is someone trying to convince me that it’s that warm
    >further up north? (I’d like to see evidence.)

    Apparently, every June the arctic experiences melting according to this NOAA article.
    http://www.arctic.noaa.gov/essay_wadhams.html

    We know that arctic and antarctic ice melts and breaks off otherwise we wouldn’t have scenarios where giant masses of ice the size of Long Island break off the Antarctic.

    >As I understand it, right now, theories about global
    >warming and anthropogenic CO2 having causal effects on the
    >thermohaline circulation of the Gulf Stream are just that:
    >theories.

    It’s a theory, which means it’s been tested and well thought through. The way you’ve misrepresented/misunderstood the theory, you would have us thinking we’re talking about very shoddy off-the-cuff conjecture.

    >Where are the real scientists that can form verifiable
    >experiments to test and validate these theories? I can
    >speculate about causes that might possibly affect
    >thermohaline circulation like the best of them, but that
    >doesn’t make my theories any more correct or incorrect than
    >these more widely held theories.

    When real scientists can’t recreate globes and accelerate time to test theories like these, they do their best to create models or simulations, which is exactly what these guys did.

    Keep in mind that these scientists are not representing their theory as a fact. Other people are guilty of doing that. What they’ve done is tried their best to test their hypothesis with a model and publish the results of those tests. They are merely saying, “we think this is a plausible prediction”.

    Read the wording of the article:

    “Despite the uncertainty surrounding climate models and their ability to predict future scenarios accurately, they indicate a range of possible outcomes to present climatological trends and are thus worthy of careful attention.”

    >I have a hard time understanding why so many people are so
    >quick to accept this “global warming” theory when there’s
    >just as much real science behind it as, say, my theory of
    >increased EM causing the Earth’s axial tilt to increase by
    >10^-6 degrees, causing a 20F average climate change. (I
    >just made that up on the spot.)

    Why are people so quick to accept it? It’s simple. People tend to blindly follow authority and trust ordained sources of information. Also, most people don’t care about nuances of theories, error bars, probability, etc. They just want to categorize the world into true/untrue and right/wrong. So if a theory is published, gets a lot of circulation, and seems like it was ordained, it gets categorized as true.

    People like yourself understand this and understand these ordained sources are not always right, so you tend to be resistant in accepting these things are fact. That’s good. You’re resisting dogma.

    What I have a hard time understanding why a very intelligent person like yourself would assume these researchers are producing half-assed conjecture that doesn’t even pass the obvious questions test.

    If you’d have given the researcher (and entire establishment) a little more credit, you would have answered your questions and resolved all the contradictions yourself, because you would have said to yourself. “I bet these guys thought of this, I wonder how they resolved it.”

    I can’t quote Carl Sagan verbatim, but he made a really good point about balancing skepticism and being receptive to new ideas. Some ideas require serious consideration because they might seem counterintuitive at first glance.

    MY POINT: Peer reviewed theories deserve serious consideration. Not premature rejection and definitely not blind acceptance.

    (Holy crap I’m long-winded today)

  7. Steve:

    “What I have a hard time understanding why a very intelligent person like yourself would assume these researchers are producing half-assed conjecture that doesn’t even pass the obvious questions test.”

    I’m not assuming they are–I’m declaring that they are.

    Even in the absence of humankind, the earth goes through climate cycles. We believe this based on geological evidence, for what that’s worth.

    The conjecture of anthropogenic climate change (i.e., “global warming”) lacks compelling evidence that we induce significant climate change (say, outside the standard deviation of pre-human era).

    I’m going out on a limb here, but I’m pretty confident asserting that our current weather modeling capability is still so rudimentary that we can’t even predict tomorrow’s weather. Exactly why would you ever take someone seriously if they said they’re predicting the effects of global warming years into the future? I’d laugh at them, to their faces, for being kooks.

  8. All I will say, thank god my good friend Dossy is not in a position of responsibility to make a decision on anything impactful to the human race, but I do love his blog.

  9. Julio: You’d rather let kooks with unproven speculation and “modeling” to instigate laws which govern our society?

    I’m all for the pursuit of knowledge and the scientific process, but creating laws around stuff which at best is unproven theory and at worst is downright quackery makes me very, very nervous.

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