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The global CO2 rise: the facts, Exxon and the favorite denial tricks

Filed under: — stefan @ 25 January 2018

The basic facts about the global increase of CO2 in our atmosphere are clear and established beyond reasonable doubt. Nevertheless, I’ve recently seen some of the old myths peddled by “climate skeptics” pop up again. Are the forests responsible for the CO2 increase? Or volcanoes? Or perhaps the oceans?

Let’s start with a brief overview of the most important data and facts about the increase in the carbon dioxide concentration in the atmosphere:

  1. Since the beginning of industrialization, the CO2 concentration has risen from 280 ppm (the value of the previous millennia of the Holocene) to now 405 ppm.
  2. This increase by 45 percent (or 125 ppm) is completely caused by humans.
  3. The CO2 concentration is thus now already higher than it has been for several million years.
  4. The additional 125 ppm CO2 have a heating effect of 2 watts per square meter of earth surface, due to the well-known greenhouse effect – enough to raise the global temperature by around 1°C until the present.

Fig. 1 Perhaps the most important scientific measurement series of the 20th century: the CO2 concentration of the atmosphere, measured on Mauna Loa in Hawaii. Other stations of the global CO2 measurement network show almost exactly the same; the most important regional variation is the greatly subdued seasonal cycle at stations in the southern hemisphere. This seasonal variation is mainly due to the “inhaling and exhaling” of the forests over the year on the land masses of the northern hemisphere. Source (updated daily): Scripps Institution of Oceanography.

Fig. 2 The CO2 concentration of the atmosphere during the Holocene, measured in the ice cores from Antarctica until 1958, afterwards Mauna Loa. Source: Scripps Institution of Oceanography.

These facts are well known and easy to understand. Nevertheless, I am frequently confronted with attempts to play down the dangerous CO2-increase, e.g. recently in the right-leaning German newspaper Die Welt.

Are the forests to blame?

Die Welt presented a common number-trick by climate deniers (readers can probably point to some english-language examples):

In fact, carbon dioxide, which is blamed for climate warming, has only a volume share of 0.04 percent in the atmosphere. And of these 0.04 percent CO2, 95 percent come from natural sources, such as volcanoes or decomposition processes in nature. The human CO2 content in the air is thus only 0.0016 percent.

The claim “95 percent from natural sources” and the “0.0016 percent” are simply wrong (neither does the arithmetic add up – how would 5% of 0.04 be 0.0016?). These (and similar – sometimes you read 97% from natural sources) numbers have been making the rounds in climate denier circles for many years (and have repeatedly been rebutted by scientists). They present a simple mix-up of turnover and profit, in economic terms. The land ecosystems have, of course, a high turnover of carbon, but (unlike humans) do not add any net CO2 to the atmosphere. Any biomass which decomposes must first have grown – the CO2 released during rotting was first taken from the atmosphere by photosynthesis. This is a cycle. Hey, perhaps that’s why it’s called the carbon cycle!

That is why one way to reduce emissions is the use of bioenergy, such as heating with wood (at least when it’s done in a sustainable manner – many mistakes can be made with bioenergy). Forests only increase the amount of CO2 in the air when they are felled, burnt or die. This is immediately understood by looking at a schematic of the carbon cycle, Fig. 3.

Fig. 3 Scheme of the global carbon cycle. Values ​​for the carbon stocks are given in Gt C (ie, billions of tonnes of carbon) (bold numbers). Values ​​for average carbon fluxes are given in Gt C per year (normal numbers). Source: WBGU 2006 . (A similar graph can also be found at Wikipedia.) Since this graph was prepared, anthropogenic emissions and the atmospheric CO2 content have increased further, see Figs 4 and 5, but I like the simplicity of this graph.

If one takes as the total emissions a “natural” part (60 GtC from soils + 60 GtC from land plants) and the 7 GtC fossil emissions as anthropogenic part, the anthropogenic portion is about 5% (7 of 127 billion tons of carbon) as cited in the Welt article. This percentage is highly misleading, however, since it ignores that the land biosphere does not only release 120 GtC but also absorbs 122 GtC by photosynthesis, which means that net 2 GtC is removed from the atmosphere. Likewise, the ocean removes around 2 GtC. To make any sense, the net emissions by humans have to be compared with the net uptake by oceans and forests and atmosphere, not with the turnover rate of a cycle, which is an irrelevant comparison. And not just irrelevant – it becomes plain wrong when that 5% number is then misunderstood as the human contribution to the atmospheric CO2 concentration.

The natural earth system thus is by no means a source of CO2 for the atmosphere, but it is a sink! Of the 7 GtC, which we blow into the atmosphere every year, only 3 remain there. 2 are absorbed by the ocean and 2 by the forests. This means that in the atmosphere and in the land biosphere and in the ocean the amount of stored carbon is increasing. And the source of all this additional carbon is the fact that we extract loads of fossil carbon from the earth’s crust and add it to the system. That’s already clear from the fact that we add twice as much to the atmosphere as is needed to explain the full increase there – that makes it obvious that the natural Earth system cannot possibly be adding more CO2 but rather is continually removing about half of our CO2 emissions from the atmosphere.

The system was almost exactly in equilibrium before humans intervened. That is why the CO2 concentration in the air was almost constant for several thousand years (Figure 2). This means that the land ecosystems took up 120 GtC and returned 120 GtC (the exact numbers don’t matter here, what matters is that they are the same). The increased uptake of CO2 by forests and oceans of about 2 GtC per year each is already a result of the human emissions, which has added enormous amounts of CO2 to the system. The ocean has started to take up net CO2 from the atmosphere through gas exchange at the sea surface: because the CO2 concentration in the atmosphere is now higher than in the surface ocean, there is net flux of CO2 into the sea. And because trees take up CO2 by photosynthesis and can do this more easily if you offer them more CO2 in the air, they have started to photosynthesize more and thus take up a bit more CO2 than is released by decomposing old biomass. (To what extent and for how long the land biosphere will remain a carbon sink is open to debate, however: this will depend on the extent to which the global ecosystems come under stress by global warming, e.g. by increasing drought and wildfires.)

The next diagram shows (with more up-to-date and accurate numbers) the net fluxes of CO2 (this time in CO2 units, not carbon units!).

Fig. 4 CO2 budget for 2007-2016, showing the various net sources and sinks. The figures here are expressed in gigatons of CO2 and not in gigatons of carbon as in Fig. 3. The conversion factor is 44/12 (molecular weight of CO2 divided by atomic weight of carbon). Source: Global Carbon Project.

Fig. 5 shows where the CO2 comes from (in the upper half you see the sources – fossil carbon and deforestation) and where it ends up (in the lower half you sees the sinks), in the course of time. It ends up in comparably large parts in air, oceans and forests. The share absorbed by the land ecosystems varies greatly from year to year, depending on whether there were widespread droughts, for example, or whether it was a good growth year for the forests. That is why the annual CO2 increase in the atmosphere also varies greatly each year, and this short-term variation is not mainly caused by variations in our emissions (so a record CO2 increase in the atmosphere in an El Niño year does not mean that human emissions have surged in that year).

Fig. 5 Annual emissions of carbon from fossil sources and deforestation, and annual emissions from the biosphere, atmosphere and ocean (the latter are negative, meaning net uptake). This is again in carbon (not CO2) units; the 12 gigatons of carbon emitted in 2016 are a lot more than the 7 gigatons in the older Fig. 3. Source: Global Carbon Project.

The “climate skeptics” blaming the forests for most of the increase in atmospheric CO2, because of decaying foliage and deadwood, is not merely wrong, it is pretty bonkers. Have leaves started to decompose only since industrialization? Media with a minimum aspiration to credibility should clearly reject such nonsense, instead of spreading it further. In case of Die Welt, one of my PIK colleagues had explicitly pointed out to the author, in response to a query by him, that the 5% human share of CO2 is misleading and that humans have caused a 45% increase. That the complete CO2 increase is anthropogenic has been known for decades. The first IPCC report, published in 1990, put it thus:

Since the industrial revolution the combustion of fossil fuels and deforestation have led to an increase of 26% in carbon dioxide concentration in the atmosphere.

In the 27 years since then, the CO2 increase caused by our emissions has gone up from 26% to 45%.

How Exxon misled the public against better knowledge

One fascinating question is where this false idea of humans just contributing a tiny bit to the relentless rise in atmospheric CO2 has come from? Have a look at this advertorial (a paid-for editorial) by ExxonMobil in the New York Times from 1997:

Fig. 6 Excerpt from the New York Times of 6 November 1997

The text to go with it read:

While most of the CO2 emitted by far is the result of natural phenomena – namely respiration and decomposition, most attention has centered on the three to four percent related to human activities – burning of fossil fuels, deforestation.

That is pretty clever and could hardly be an accident. The impression is given that human emissions are not a big deal and only responsible for a small percentage of the CO2 increase in the atmosphere – but without explicitly saying that. In my view the authors of this piece knew that this idea is plain wrong, so they did not say it but preferred to insinuate it. A recent publication by Geoffrey Supran and Naomi Oreskes in Environmental Research Letters has systematically assessed ExxonMobil’s climate change communications during 1977–2014 and found:

We conclude that ExxonMobil contributed to advancing climate science—by way of its scientists’ academic publications—but promoted doubt about it in advertorials. Given this discrepancy, we conclude that ExxonMobil misled the public.

They explain their main findings in this short video clip.

Does the CO2 come from volcanoes?

Another age-old climatic skeptic myth, is that the CO2 is coming from volcanoes – first time I had to rebut this was as a young postdoc in the 1990s. The total volcanic emissions are between 0.04 and 0.07 gigatonnes of CO2 per year, compared to the anthropogenic emissions of 12 gigatons in 2016. Anthropogenic emissions are now well over a hundred times greater than volcanic ones. The volcanic emissions are important for the long-term CO2 changes over millions of years, but not over a few centuries.

Does the CO2 come from the ocean?

As already mentioned and shown in Figs. 4 and 5, the oceans absorb net CO2 and do not release any. The resulting increase in CO2 in the upper ocean is documented and mapped in detail by countless ship surveys and known up to a residual uncertainty of + – 20% . This is, in itself, a very serious problem because it leads to the acidification of the oceans, since CO2 forms carbonic acid in water. The observed CO2 increase in the world ocean disproves another popular #fakenews piece of the “climate skeptics”: namely that the CO2 increase in the atmosphere might have been caused by the outgassing of CO2 from the ocean as a result of the warming. No serious scientist believes this.

Remember also from Figs. 4 and 5 that we emit about twice as much CO2 as is needed to explain the complete rise in the atmosphere. In case you have not connected the dots: the denier myth of the oceans as cause of the atmospheric CO2 rise most often comes in the form of “the CO2 rise lagged behind temperature rise in glacial cycles”. It is true that during ice ages the oceans took up more CO2 and that is why there was less in the atmosphere, and during the warming at the end of glacial cycles that CO2 came back out of the ocean, and this was an important amplifying feedback. But it is a fallacy to conclude that the same natural phenomenon is happening again now. As I explained above: measurements clearly prove that the modern CO2 rise has a different cause, namely our fossil fuel use. What is the same now and over past glacial cycles is not the CO2 source, but the greenhouse effect of the atmospheric CO2 changes:  without that we could not understand (or correctly simulate in our climate models) the full extent of glacial cycles.

The cyanide cocktail

A man offers you a cocktail with a little bit of cyanide at a party. You reject that indignantly, but the man assures you it is completely safe: after all, the amount of cyanide in your body  after this drink would be only 0.001 percent! This could hardly be harmful! Those scientists who claim that 3 mg cyanide per kg of body weight (ie 0.0003 percent) are fatal are obviously not to be trusted. Are you falling for that argument?

We hope not, and we hope you will neither fall for the claim that 0.0125 percent of CO2 (that’s the 125 ppm increase caused by humans) can’t be bad because that number is small. Of course, the amount of CO2 in the air could also be expressed in kilograms: it is 3200 billion tons or 3,200,000,000,000,000 kilograms. Of this humans are responsible for almost 1000 billion tons. (Does that sound more harmful than 0.0125 percent?) Since the year 1870, we have even emitted a total of about 2,000 billion tons. As already explained, forests and oceans have removed about half of that from the atmosphere.

Scientists specify the concentration of individual gases in the atmosphere as volume fractions (rather than, e.g., grams per cubic meter of air) because then the numbers do not depend on temperature and pressure, which vary greatly in the atmosphere. As far as climatic impact is concerned, however, the fraction of the total mass of the atmosphere is irrelevant since the atmosphere consists of 99.9% nitrogen, oxygen and argon, i.e. gases which cannot absorb infrared radiation. Only molecules made of at least three atoms absorb heat radiation and thus only such trace gases makes the greenhouse effect, and among these CO2 is the second most important after water vapor. All this has been known since John Tyndall’s measurements of the greenhouse effect of various gases in 1859. Tyndall back then wrote:

[T]he atmosphere admits of the entrance of the solar heat, but checks its exit; and the result is a tendency to accumulate heat at the surface of the planet.

That is still a great concise description of the greenhouse effect! Without CO2 in the air our planet would be completely frozen, no life would be possible. With CO2, we are turning one of the major control knobs of global climate.

The climate effect

So let’s finally come to the climatic effect of the CO2 increase. As for cyanide, the effect is what counts, and not whether compared to some large mass the fraction is 10 percent or 0.01 percent. The dose effect of toxins on humans can be determined from experience with victims. The climatic impact of greenhouse gases can either be calculated on the basis of an understanding of the physical processes, or it can be determined from the experience of climate history (see my previous post). Both come to the same conclusion. The climate sensitivity (global warming in equilibrium after CO2 doubling) is around 3°C, and the expected warming to date, due to the current CO2 increase, is around 1°C. This corresponds quite exactly to the observed global warming (Fig. 7). For which, by the way, there is no natural explanation, and the best estimate for the anthropogenic share of global warming since 1950 is 110 percent – more on this in my previous post.

Fig. 7 Time evolution of global temperature, CO2 concentration and solar activity. Temperature and CO2 are scaled relative to each other as the physically expected CO2 effect on the climate predicts (i.e. best estimate of the climate sensitivity). The amplitude of the solar curve is scaled as derived from the observed correlation of solar and temperature data. (Details are explained here ). This graph can be created here and you can copy a code that can be used as a widget in any website (as in my home page), where it is automatically updated every year with the latest data. Thanks to Bernd Herd who programmed this.

Finally, here is a slick new video clip illustrating the history of CO2 emissions on the map:

Links

Physics Today: The carbon cycle in a changing climate

240 Responses to “The global CO2 rise: the facts, Exxon and the favorite denial tricks”

  1. 201
    Ray Ladbury says:

    alphagrius,
    Thanks for admitting that you don’t even bother to read what other commenters here post–or if you do read it, you don’t understand it.

    You can now be safely ignored.

  2. 202
    Mal Adapted says:

    Dennis H Horne:

    To wit: you must be an embarrassment to U of Adelaide. Why can’t you just claim to be Napoleon or the Queen of Sheba or something?

    Outstanding 8^D! If brevity is the soul of wit, your ‘To wit:’ suffices!

  3. 203
    Mal Adapted says:

    Dennis N Horne:

    And no, I am not nigelj; I don’t see any similarities in style. He is comparatively polite, if long-winded, and I am pithy and to the point.

    In justice to nigelj, diplomacy with AGW-deniers demands a measure of circumlocution. With some of them, one can speak plainly XOR politely 8^|.

  4. 204
    nigelj says:

    alphagruis @199

    “So, actually, climate diplomacy is on track because a future, unproven, massive technology will save us ? I’m confused now, since I have been told repeatedly by the other amusing RE zealots here that present technology is already capable to readily save us… Their guru M.J. even felt the need to very recently publish yet another paper that once more “demonstrates” it.”

    No I only ever claimed renewable electricity and biofuels is feasible. Negative emissions technology is a separate and challenging issue. You are conflating two things. Its a particularly decrepit straw man.

    We do have a range of negative emissions technologies, BECCS, soil sequestration of carbon, direct air capture, forests, biochar and others A combination of all of them would have potential to solve the problem.

  5. 205

    PC 193: adding more CO2 will have no effect on its emission, and warming

    BPL: The old “saturation” argument? If so: http://bartonlevenson.com/Saturation.html

  6. 206
    Al Bundy says:

    Scroll down to last two paragraphs if you only want topical stuff….

    Killian: You object to my critique….you have that same unscientific…You, and most here, are absolutely clueless …you were wrong in places, a little too cute in places and unfair in places…I would not bother replying to you

    [Promises, promises…]

    tour [your] ego-based reasons for being here. LOL… Good god. Basic discussion is not “butting in.”…Your nonsense would be generally translated as impossible…few would agree with you…I don’t. Perhaps the most important element to my being able to do things like [fly?]…I understand the science is attempting to describe a planet that has never existed before, a level of forcings that has never happened before and a lack of hysteresis that has never happened before. I recognized this as key long ago. Most of you seem to have yet accepted it.

    Your “nonsense” is non-scientific and, imo, naive.

    AB: You have taught me much, Killian. You see, I see a lot of you in the self I’ve been actively working to discard. (In your attitude, not your ability, of course.) Please, keep up the bile so that I can continue to have an anti-role model. You’re absolutely perfect…

    ———

    Dan DaSilva: Also the 100 people murdered by communism, which is still in practice

    AB: Please try to stay slightly on topic, and perhaps even get your economic systems correct. Capitalism, as expressed by Nazi Germany, Russia’s Gangster Capitalism, and the USA’s Republicans has murdered ever so many people. Iraq? Afghanistan? Poland? France? Vietnam? Palestine? Flint? And, of course, capitalism is now destroying the entire biosphere, or at least converting it into what surely will be a horrendously toxic “home” for humanity. Compared to capitalism, communism is a walk in the park while sniffing flowers and petting deer. Joni Mitchell said it well, “They paved paradise and put in a parking lot.”

    —————

    And speaking of on topic, way up thread I mentioned that high-speed jets are the central problem, as opposed to air travel itself. Drag is to the cube of velocity, so the tremendous speed of the plane itself, let alone the engine, means that jets slurp up fuel with abandon. Now, by going prop, you not only have a far more efficient engine (especially when one goes combined cycle as opposed to turboprop)

    This means that the plane can be FAR larger per passenger while still increasing efficiency sky-high. And since security and packing and all the wrapper activities actually take up the bulk of the flying experience’s time, inserting a hyper-efficient and ultra comfortable plane ride into the trip will bother few folks. Instead, they’ll be grousing about security lines and how much they want to get on the plane so they can play/work/sleep in style. Note that this also makes air travel far safer because the slower the cruising speed, the better the match between cruising speed and takeoff/landing speeds. Wings and whatnot can be built for safety and structure within a small speed range. Bird strikes become a yawner and piston-driven props don’t throw turbine blades. Everything gets harder, more expensive, and inefficient once any component that touches air approaches the speed of sound.

    Thoughts?

  7. 207
    CCHolley says:

    Peter Carson @193

    Eni Bunny #177. You don’t bother to read properly, do you? I guess it saves thinking.
    Why do so many here use pseudonyms? I suppose it allows trolls to hide their idiocy – but does show their lack of courage.

    Everyone with half a brain knows who Eli Bunny is. Look in the mirror if you want to see idiocy. Moron.

  8. 208
    Thomas says:

    Up-to-date weekly average CO2 at Mauna Loa

    Week beginning on February 11, 2018: 408.39 ppm
    Weekly value from 1 year ago: 405.93 ppm (+2.46 / last yr)
    Weekly value from 10 years ago: 385.92 ppm (+2.25 -yr / decade)
    Last updated: February 18, 2018

  9. 209
    CCHolley says:

    My apologies to Professor Eli Rabbett, emeritus. I let the ignorance of the troll get the best of me. It is so unfortunate that your attempts to educate with expert clear and concise explanations are ignored and draw only arrogant insults.

  10. 210
    alphagruis says:

    nigelj #204

    Thanks for confirming exactly what I said: According to you we do have yet the technology to “solve the problem”.

    Mark Jacobson agrees !

    Be happy !

    Ray Ladbury #201

    I can now be safely ignored ?

    No problem and have a nice nap !

  11. 211
    Dennis N Horne says:

    @nigelj, @Mal Adapted. My comment “long-winded” was uncalled for, but worse, it was wrong! It was someone else I had in mind. Sorry.

  12. 212

    AB 206: Compared to capitalism, communism is a walk in the park while sniffing flowers and petting deer.

    BPL: As someone who lost relatives to the GULAG, I find comments like this startlingly ignorant. Communist regimes murdered 140+ million people in the 20th century, by my estimate (and yes, I ran demographic models), and they were no better on the environment than capitalist regimes. Chelyabinsk, Chernobyl, and the destruction of the Aral Sea were not the work of capitalism.

  13. 213
    Hank Roberts says:

    Well, perhaps Dr. Gostin will come comment on his endorsement of this revolution in climate science.
    Has anyone invited him to join the emeriti opining here?
    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2018/01/the-global-co2-rise-the-facts-exxon-and-the-favorite-denial-tricks/comment-page-4/#comment-691875

  14. 214
    Martin Heimann says:

    There are two additional very powerful arguments that the historical increase of CO2 is caused by the burning of fossil fuels:

    (1) Decrease of oxygen in the atmosphere. Burning of fossil fuels needs oxygen and the observed decrease in the atmosphere since measurements began in 1989 closely match the corresponding increase in CO2. Neither volcanoes nor a warming ocean would suck up atmospheric oxygen… As a side remark: the subtle difference between the rise in CO2 and the equivalent drop in O2 permits to estimate the partitioning of the ocean and land sinks of CO2.

    (2) The observed inter hemispheric difference between the CO2 measurements at the Mauna Loa and the South Pole stations tracks beautifully the temporal increase and variation of the fossil fuel emissions over the last 55 years. This is easy to understand: most of the emissions take place in the northern hemisphere – hence the gradient between the hemispheres changes in proportion to the emission difference between them.

    Both arguments have been nicely documented in the IPCC WGI carbon cycle chapters.

  15. 215
    Peter Carson says:

    #207 CCHolley.
    OK! OK! I agree with you! You’ve got half a brain!

  16. 216
    nigelj says:

    Thomas @208 on CO2 levels. The clock ticks while we all argue.

  17. 217
    nigelj says:

    Al Bundy @206

    “You have taught me much, Killian. You see, I see a lot of you in the self I’ve been actively working to discard”

    Me too. Some people subscribe to the New York shouting match school of communication, with its insults, authoritarianism and aggression. Please keep it in New York.

    Or at least be clever, playful and subtle with put downs. Like Graham Norton.

  18. 218
    nigelj says:

    Peter Carson @215

    “#207 CCHolley.
    OK! OK! I agree with you! You’ve got half a brain!”

    CCholleys half a brain is ten times as powerful as your whole brain.

  19. 219
    nigelj says:

    Dennis N Horne @211, you are forgiven, however I can actually be a bit long winded. Ironically.

  20. 220
    CCHolley says:

    Peter Carson @215

    #207 CCHolley.
    OK! OK! I agree with you! You’ve got half a brain!

    Half a brain beats no brain at all. And it only takes half a brain to recognize the later.

  21. 221
    Ray Ladbury says:

    Peter Carson,
    To anyone with any scientific training whatsoever, it is obvious that you are full of fetid dingo kidneys.

    For those who do not have such a background, the fact that you self-publish your crank theories on your own blog rather than in the scientific literature ought to be a giveaway. Real scientists don’t do that, poseur.

  22. 222
    Thomas says:

    212 Barton Paul Levenson, the American Regime is murdering people now as I write. Please try and get up-to-date in the present and stop living your life through the rear vision mirror, is my uncalled for advice.

    The day that America and Americans can recognise that they profoundly repeatedly interfere in other nations democracy and elections, including Australia’s, I will die of shock. Obama interfered in the Egyptian Govt and their elections. And Iran and Ukraine and Syria and Russia and Japan and Thailand and ad nauseum. Not to mention the 1974 coup in Chile etc etc. Americans and the American govt interfere in Israeli elections 24/7. Israeli citizens interfere in Australian democracy and our elections, while working for Israeli Govt interests but unfortunately they might also be Australian citizens as well.

    I did not see a sitting member of the Duma nor any Minister in Putin’s cabinet giving speeches at US political rallies, but I did see Senator John McCain and several others doing just that in The Ukraine. Like hello? Anyone awake yet?

    It’s like the school yard bully is complaining to the headmaster that one of his victims beaten almost to death yesterday had stole his lunch.

    American political activists and power brokers especially CLIMATE SCIENCE DENIER GROUPS fund and advise and support Australian Think Tanks like the IPA who then get their staff to be pre-selected for the Liberal and National parties and who are now sitting in our Federal and State parliaments and vote on Laws regarding AGW/CC. The US Embassy gratefully welcomes sitting Australian Senators in the my Government to be registered as secret US Informants.

    BPL, I think someone needs to tell you (and America as a whole) that you are a classic Racist. But even if they did it would make no difference to your extreme cognitive dissonance.

    In the world of issues about AGW/CC and Democracy globally the USA is a recalcitrant bar none other. Ponder that hey? People who are living in glass house right now today, should not be and have NO RIGHT to keep throwing stones about the Past. Because what is happening right NOW is far too important, nay critical.

    Which is why anyone still enamored by the American Dream is asleep. :-)

  23. 223

    Th 222: Please try and get up-to-date in the present and stop living your life through the rear vision mirror, is my uncalled for advice.

    BPL: The day I need advice from you, I think I’ll go into hospice care.

    Th: BPL, I think someone needs to tell you (and America as a whole) that you are a classic Racist

    BPL: And I think someone needs to tell you that you are a classic paranoid conspiracy-theory nutbar with delusions of competence. And a Chekist. Yes, I know you’re Australian or NZish (not that I care which). You still defend Russia at every turn and denounce the US at every turn, and your love for Putin is nothing short of revolting. In short, bugger off.

  24. 224
    Thomas says:

    But speaking about the past, for a moment, it has been shown scientifically that up to ~2000 about 25% of all AGW/CC forcing has been done by the great USA with only 4% of the world’s population. And that 25% does not include the agw/cc damage done across the world in other people’s nations since 1776.

    Sure, claim what a great job the USA is doing recently in slightly decreasing it’s ghg forcings, but that 25% does not include the GHG and LUC forcings of China, Mexico, Germany, Japan, Brazil, Indonesia et al from which the USA has and continues to import raw materials and goods from like there is no tomorrow.

    Then we might also quickly touch on what the USA and everyday Americans did to the Vietnamese, the Cambodians and the Laotians and to their lands in the past, and compare that with what the USA has done recently in and to Libya, Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Palestine, Egypt, Iran, central america, south america and elsewhere. No? Too much?

    Where would Walmart be without the dirty fossil fuels used by China since 2000? Where is all that cement going to come from in Iraq and Syria and Yemen etc etc to rebuild those people’s homes and commerical buildings and Hospitals and Power Stations?

    So sure, cry over the spilled milk of of X millions dead by those bad Communists in the past, but do not forget what the Shinto Militarists of Japan did to China and Korea.

    It’s 2018 and the real issue today is not the Communists but is in fact the Consumerists! 25% of which is driven by the USA and Americans who look just like BPL.

    25% of the personal responsibility for the 10,000 or so who died in the European/Russian heatwave rests on the lap of Americans. Right? There are many other examples where people are and will continue to die from manipulative pseudo Democratic Regimes as well their insatiable Consummerism and addiction to Power.

    So if in the near or distant future, 1 billion souls are killed by the Impacts of AGW/CC across the world, just know that Americans, be they pro or con agw/cc action, voters or non-voters, rebubs or dems or greenies will have the blood of about 250 million souls on their hands.

    I’m still waiting for the USA and Amercians to at least recognize the AGW/CC Reparations that are due to billions of people across this world already for the damage that it and they has already wreaked upon this planet and her peoples.

    I’ll skip the reparations war crimes and genocide for now, as it’s off topic.

    That’s the reality today and tomorrow. Please ponder that logic if you dare. :-)

  25. 225
    Thomas says:

    RE: the-favorite-denial-tricks

    Here’s another.

    https://unfccc.int/files/focus/long-term_strategies/application/pdf/mid_century_strategy_report-final_red.pdf

    Finally published on the 16th November 2016 after Trump had been elected, to be tossed in the trash can on 20th January 2017.

    This came after 8 years of wasted time on the subject of AGW/CC Energy, and pipelines and Fracking by the Democrats and Obama, the so-called great communicator and Nobel Peace Prize winner ordering murders to be committed by US citizens and their Proxies all across the planet and repeatedly lying through his teeth about all manner of topics Geopolitical, War, and Economics and repeatedly interfering in other nations governments and ‘Democratic’ elections. Do not get me started on Hillary as SoS. :-)

    Sorry, I think someone may have pushed my buttons again. (broadly smiling)

    AGW/CC action? Pffft

  26. 226

    Th 2224: Please ponder that logic if you dare.

    BPL: If it had something to do with actual logic I might. I was most amused by your denouncing US involvement in Syria, considering what Russia is doing there. But it doesn’t count when your favorite regime does it, apparently.

  27. 227
    Thomas says:

    BPL: If it had something to do with actual logic I might

    T: Thanks for at least looking and providing the feedback. I’ll try harder.

    Besides using the tools of accurate historical timelines, considering the difficulty in unpicking human generated chicken-egg scenarios, and the human challenge of being aware of and hopefully overcoming not seeing the forest for the trees aka a global vs a local viewpoint, what other logical tips might you recommend BPL?

  28. 228
    nigelj says:

    My two cents worth.

    America has a interfering foreign policy, with plenty of hypocrisy, and some dumb domestic policies (teenagers that can buy semi automatics).

    Russia has a predatory foreign policy, and a highly authoritarian, intolerant culture and a total thug of a leader.

    They look as bad as each other at times. You know its true.

  29. 229
    Craig says:

    And the rise in CO2 is bad in what way? Real world examples please and validated through empirical research.

  30. 230

    C 229: And the rise in CO2 is bad in what way?

    BPL: It causes global warming, which threatens our agriculture through droughts and our coastal infrastructure through rising sea levels.

  31. 231
    CCHolley says:

    Craig @229

    And the rise in CO2 is bad in what way? Real world examples please and validated through empirical research.

    You would think that someone asking such a broad simple question would have at least enough curiosity to have made an attempt to understand something of what the science actually tells us. So apparently said person is either too lazy or just trolling.

    The role of CO2 in keeping the planet warm was first shown way back in 1859 by the *empirical* measurements of the radiative properties of atmospheric gases by John Tyndall. If you question whether or not our atmosphere warms the planet, consider what the temperature should be at the surface based on the Stefan-Boltzmann Law and observe the temperatures of the atmosphereless moon. The laws of physics tells us adding more CO2 will increase surface temperatures. Empirical evidence, measurements of the radiative imbalance by satellites, confirms this to be occurring. Multiple lines of evidence, empirical observations, tells us it is warming.

    If one cannot appreciate that the resulting warming will cause problems of increasing significance, then they are clearly deluded. You do not need empirical evidence to conclude this, only common sense.

    However, let’s look at one example, sea level rise, clearly observed, caused by melting glacial ice and thermal expansion which will obviously not be good for those living in low elevations. Empirical evidence tells us that the last time CO2 levels were at 400 ppm, the oceans were considerably higher, perhaps in the neighborhood of 85 feet. Is that *bad*? Does one need *empirical* evidence to determine this? I don’t think so. Just ask the people that are living in these areas if sea level rise would be bad. Just consider, where are those 50 million people living in Bangladesh going to go? You got room for them?

    If someone is actually interested in the science, there is good information on this site along with links to legitimate sources. If one is interested in understanding the consequences, there is much discussion of that on this site. If one actually cares about future generations, they would make some effort to learn what the science actually tells us rather than just troll.

  32. 232
    nigelj says:

    Craig @229

    “And the rise in CO2 is bad in what way? Real world examples please and validated through empirical research.”

    Dear Mr Troll. Read the last IPCC report for the basics. Its free online.

  33. 233
    Hank Roberts says:

    Craig, you can look this stuff up and learn about it for yourself.
    Please take what you learn back to wherever you first read the questions you’ve pasted in here.
    Educate someone.

    https://www.google.com/search?q=co2+nutritional+value

  34. 234
    Thomas says:

    Craig, ROFL, go here if you dare — “Not convinced that the consequences will be as harmful as is often claimed.” Full to the brim with Real world examples validated through empirical research and things called SCIENTIFIC REFERENCES. https://tamino.wordpress.com/2018/02/18/consequences/ hehehehe.

  35. 235
    Tristan says:

    My favourite way of dealing with the “a single volcanic eruption outweighs all human CO2 emissions” furphy is to calculate the size of the crater that would ensue if it were true. You’d think people would notice a 5-10 km deep hemispherical hole in the ground, wouldn’t you?

  36. 236
    Thomas says:

    Synonyms for atone
    http://www.thesaurus.com/browse/atone

    UK offensive
    https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/bugger-off

    Hoi BPL, отбивать and 你滚开! (smile)

  37. 237

    Synonyms for Thomas: Chekist, Traitor, Communist, Red, someone with a nice office reserved for him at the Lyubyanka when the Australian authorities finally catch onto him…

  38. 238
    Thomas says:

    (smiling)

  39. 239
    Thomas says:

    I have read a few books, written a few books and been debriefed by the best of them. So, who is hating the reflection?
    https://www.rt.com/shows/worlds-apart-oksana-boyko/418470-rt-foreign-agent-west/

    But please BPL do not tell the FBI or Robert Muller, as I am in enough trouble already. (smile)

    What’s this got to do with AGW/CC communications? Pretty much everything.

  40. 240
    Hank Roberts says:

    AGWers then infer these majority gases are unable to become warmer

    The people you believe you are fighting with do not exist.