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Unforced variations: Oct 2018

Filed under: — group @ 1 October 2018

This month’s open thread on climate science topics. Dominant theme this month will probably be the release of the IPCC Special Report on 1.5ºC. The final report will be released later this week, and when it does we’ll give a brief summary. The hastag to follow on Twitter is #SR15.

221 Responses to “Unforced variations: Oct 2018”

  1. 201
    nigelj says:

    Killian,

    I accept that direct air capture is not 100% proven in the sense it has not been deployed at scale yet, and it uses a lot of resources, but your solutions of planting trees and sequestration of soil carbon are not 100% proven either. Read the following article below particularly the last paragraphs.

    However I reiterate natural sustainable solutions seem preferable to me in theory, but given human nature and short time frames it looks to me like the only hope would be a combination of natural and technological solutions.

    I would also question whether other aspects of your low tech simplification philosophy are 100% proven. For example, will it preserve enough technology for essentials like health care? We don’t really know because it hasn’t been tried at any form of scale, or even rigorously in pilot form and properly peer reviewed has it?

    There’s a huge list of unknowns really, although I think the principle is heading in the right direction.

    “Scientists Push for a Crash Program to Scrub Carbon From the Air.”

    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/24/climate/global-warming-carbon-removal.html?action=click&module=In%20Other%20News&pgtype=Homepage&action=click&module=News&pgtype=Homepage

    WASHINGTON — With time running out to avoid dangerous global warming, the nation’s leading scientific body on Wednesday urged the federal government to begin a research program focused on developing technologies that can remove vast quantities of carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere in order to help slow climate change.

    Right now, there are plenty of ideas for carbon removal kicking around. Countries could plant more trees that pull carbon dioxide out of the air and lock it in their wood. Farmers could adopt techniques, such as no-till agriculture, that would keep more carbon trapped in the soil. A few companies are building “direct air capture” plants that use chemical agents to scrub trace amounts of carbon dioxide from the air, allowing them to sell the gas to industrial customers or bury it underground.

    But, the National Academies panel warned, many of these methods are still unproven or face serious limitations. There’s only so much land available to plant new trees. Scientists are still unsure how much carbon can realistically be stored in agricultural soils. And direct air capture plants are still too expensive for mass deployment. “

  2. 202

    KIA 186: Your side is to give our side basically what we want on: 2nd Amendment, school security, immigration, Israel, abortion, health insurance, voter ID and election integrity, trade, US sovereignty, education, taxes, etc.

    BPL: Over my dead body.

  3. 203

    KIA 195: After the despicable display of dishonesty by the Ds in the Kavanaugh confirmation process, they do not deserve a single vote EVER AGAIN.

    BPL: What were we dishonest about? That your pal Kavanaugh is a drunken frat-boy rapist? Would it have been more honest to say he WAS a drunken frat-boy rapist, but hasn’t been lately (that we know of)?

  4. 204
    nigelj says:

    Mr KIA @195, the Republicans may be ahead in a small number of states, but its a rather selective list that you print, so what is the status of other states? Last time I heard it looks like Democrats were favoured to take congress. These recent bomb threats wont help the Republicans.

    You say democrats lied about Kavanaugh. No, theres no proof they lied, it remains a he said, she said situation, unproven either way. In fact theres much better proof that Kavanaugh repeatedly lied to the Senate, as below

    https://boingboing.net/2018/10/03/kavanaugh-lied.html

    You want to horse trade policy on gun rights, abortion, taxes etc for climate policies. Such an ugly thing, and so divisive and tribal. What the hell are you Americans doing? You will end up with civil war. You seem like a basically decent person so what are you doing?

    Listen, beliefs are important and we would probably find a few we agree on, but you always, always have to be prepared to change your beliefs in the light of information and good argument. I have found it can be painful at times, but it has to be done.

    One example is your support of gun rights that extends towards an extreme interpretation with minimal background checks, arming teachers and few or no restrictions on what type of weapon. I strongly support ownership of guns in principle, but allowing just anybody to own guns, and allowing people to buy semi automatics is just nuts. You can rant all you like about the second amendment, but nothing justifies such stupidity.

    Almost every mass killing seems to involve semi automatics, because they are efficient killing machines. Take those out of the market, and have better background checks, and many less people will die. The States with the strongest background checks have less injuries and deaths. That’s all Democrats appear to be saying, and remember many of those guys are hunters etc, so support gun ownership in principle.

    Climate policies are not so different. Carbon tax and dividend is practical and respects conservative concerns about size of government. Democrats have already made concessions by agreeing to a dividend. For Republicans to still oppose it shows a bloody minded intransigence and stubborness.

  5. 205
    nigelj says:

    Link saying Kavanaugh lied repeatedly to the senate.

    https://boingboing.net/2018/10/03/kavanaugh-lied.html

  6. 206
    Hank Roberts says:

    https://www.npr.org/2018/10/28/658953894/coastal-pacific-oxygen-levels-now-plummet-once-a-year

    Why is this happening?

    “One of the more fundamental reasons is that the ocean is warmer now and warmer water holds less oxygen,” says Chan. “And then the second part is that a warmer surface ocean, it acts as an insulating blanket.”

    So that blanket stops colder low-oxygen water from rising up and mixing with oxygen in the surf.

    Scientists say climate change is behind this. The ocean has been absorbing nearly all the rising heat from greenhouse gas emissions, and it’s projected to grow even warmer in coming decades.

    Other factors may be contributing too. Oregon State University oceanographer and co-chair of the Oregon Coordinating Council on Ocean Acidification and Hypoxia Jack Barth, thinks higher temperatures are also slowing ocean currents…..

  7. 207
    scott nudds says:

    Brazil has pivoted sharply to the right today with the election of a former Army captain who wants to privatize state companies in an ailing economy, liberalize gun ownership and mine the rain forest.

  8. 208

    #193, Killian–

    Ah, so now an unprecedented crisis can only be addressed by “proven” methods. Got it. Except that ‘simplicity’ hasn’t been “proven”, either–not when it comes to sustaining the existing global population (let alone the predicted one).

    I would also point out that, assuming that ‘simplicity’ *can* do that, that it doesn’t follow that nothing else can, either, which appears to be the logic at two places in the comment:

    “…they are all adjudged to be technically possible…

    Who cares? Adjudged by the people who do not understand sustainable and/regenerative systems?”

    And:

    “False. It can be done, but not under any of those scenarios. Regenerative Governance is a fully do-able, not-dependent-on-any-new-tech pathway that has existed since 2011. All that is needed is the will to live intelligently with Nature.”

    You’re quite literally just asserting what you wish to believe. You don’t want ‘technical solutions’ to exist, therefore they don’t–even though SR 1.5 lays them out. Asserting, however, doesn’t make it so.

    You accuse me of not listening. The truth is, I’ve taken more trouble to listen to you than just about anyone else on this site, over the years. Yet after those years of listening and questioning, I still have yet to hear a clear articulation of how Regenerative Governance, or ‘simplicity’, can possibly do what you claim. Or of what it would look like in practice, as opposed to principle.

    I actually like the principles you’ve put forward, and will admit that they’ve influenced my thinking on the topics of mitigation and adaptation. But you aren’t going to convince many until you can provide more than general principles. You need a clear vision, and you need some sort of roadmap. You’re far from either, as far as I can tell.

    You can try to provide some of that, or you can keep insulting people whom you claim to want to convince. Your choice.

  9. 209
    Killian says:

    Re #201 nigelj said Killian,

    I accept that direct air capture is not 100% proven… but your solutions of planting trees and sequestration of soil carbon are not 100% proven either.

    They, in fact, are. They are not scientifically accepted as proven, but have been proven over and over and over. But scientists are still not studying what we do. They study pieces of it and say it’s not effective enough.

    On top of that, the lowest hanging fruit – simply creating less stuff, thus less pollution, less CO2, et al. – isn’t even considered. I have said this far too many times without anyone here or elsewhere actually engaging in a useful or even half-serious rebuttal. It’s always waived off with the same arguments, essentially: People won’t! Your human nature argument. But I have pointed out two things.

    1. It is not human nature (if “a” human nature even exists, which I do not believe it does, but for the sake of argument…) because this thing you think is human nature is new, less than 1% of human existence. Certainly, aboriginal groups have engaged in competition, including warfare, but what is never stated is these groups likely spent enormous periods of time in isolation so that re-encountering other humans seemed like meeting a humanity they never knew existed, or that came from far away and long ago. They had become “other.” We now can say unequivocally, other humans are not other, that the biosphere is one thing and that we have a very short time to deal with the damage we have caused.

    2. Nobody has put it to the masses quite so starkly as I do: Fact: The ecosystem is crashing. Fact: We will crash with it. Fact: Out attempts to separate ourselves from Nature have proven we cannot. Ergo, the only choices is rapid change back to what we once were: Part of Nature. Choose: Simplicity or destruction.

    So, if we want to solve this we must pick the low hanging fruit first: Slow down. Simplify. That can cut emissions almost instantly to the level people want, and less, even, because we can then use the natural solutions that the scientists criticize due to ignorance (non-pejorative), but which can get us to negative emissions… almost instantly. We can be going backwards within five years, not five decades.

    But nobody understands sustainability, and they sure as hell don’t understand regenerative systems, but most of all, like you, the knee-jerk reactions is, “I’m not going to live like primitives!”

    OK, then die.

    You will all either figure this out, or extinction will become a near-certainty.

    Read the following article below particularly the last paragraphs.

    I know all this. Have known all this. Stop trying to teach me. I know what the uneducated say. I know they are wrong. Were they talking to the people who know, the regenerative designers, the aboriginals who never stopped doing regenerative, then speaking, then I might listen. As it is, I hear them, I correct them, but they do not listen.

    Stop telling us to listen to them; tell them to listen to us.

    There are a precious few who look at the data and understand what I and others came to understand via a different route of analysis, that Capitalism is done. That its very nature makes it so. It cannot exist without creating imbalance, injustice, waste, hierarchy, power, wealth and without growth… because more is never enough for some, and they are primarily the ones that seek control, power, wealth.

    More are coming to understand simplicity. Check out “The Human Planet: How We Created the Anthropocene.” Though, of course, the authors would accept no feed back – because of course they are the Ph.D.’s so why listen to some guy on the internet… who knows more than we do? Still, they get a number of things right, but not enough. Still, you need to realize I am not a voice in the wilderness, but am merely ahead of the curve. All the things I say are said by others, just not all the things I say in one place, and not the core idea of fractal egalitarianism within a web of Commonses determined by bio-regional boundaries.

    But you can find someone, somewhere saying each of these things, or close enough. My insight was in putting them all together in one place. Even the fractal egalitarianism is in place, very simply structured, in Cheral, Mexico, ecovillages and even Mondragon – sort of.

    I appreciate your post being more direct, less subjective and not focused on me.

  10. 210
    Killian says:

    Re #208 Kevin McKinney said *nothing.*

    This is extremely disappointing. Eat your damned Wheaties, Kevin. Your entire post only makes sense if one pretends we have not both been on this site for the last decade. It’s utter balderdash depending on the pretense my post has no context whatsoever.

    Ah, so now an unprecedented crisis can only be addressed by “proven” methods.

    Copy and paste where I said that. False.

    Except that ‘simplicity’ hasn’t been “proven”, either–not when it comes to sustaining the existing global population (let alone the predicted one).

    Of course it has. It supported tens of millions in the Americas in pre-Columbian times and still maintains our aboriginal cousins. You can pretend this is not evidence or proof, but that is dishonest because along with that is my contention we must, in a sense, re-village. That is, localize into small communities. So, if it works in small communities and the premise is a return to small, networked villages, or at least small towns/cities, then the evidence *and* proof more than exists.

    I would also point out that, assuming that ‘simplicity’ *can* do that, that it doesn’t follow that nothing else can, either, which appears to be the logic at two places in the comment:

    Also dishonest. The argument has long been based on FACTS: None of the hi-techs, not one of them, is sustainable, but everything about simplicity can be. And what you quote below?

    “…they are all adjudged to be technically possible…

    Who cares? Adjudged by the people who do not understand sustainable and/regenerative systems?”

    This says nothing about what patterns are possible. It speaks only to whether the people you choose to listen to are ignorant of the issues they are discussing. They cannot judge because they do not have the means to do so.

    Further…

    “False. It can be done, but not under any of those scenarios. Regenerative Governance is a fully do-able, not-dependent-on-any-new-tech pathway that has existed since 2011. All that is needed is the will to live intelligently with Nature.”

    You’re quite literally just asserting what you wish to believe.

    Again, false. Try finding Helga on Facebook and educating yourself. I have asserted facts. None of those scenarios are sustainable. Not one of them. Period. And cannot be made so. You prefer to ignore limits and thermodynamics. (How do you not understand the fungibility and energy density of oil vs solar and wind-derived electricity? On the thermodynamics alone, none of those systems can succeed in creating a sustainable, let alone regenerative, future. Simplicity is NOT a choice; it is thermodynamically predetermined.)

    Meanwhile, there is absolutely nothing on a physical or technological level standing between us and Regenerative Governance. Your problem is you are so busy disliking me you can’t feaking THINK. Am I supposed to respect that?

    You don’t want ‘technical solutions’ to exist

    Don’t speak to me like a child, nor a goddamned fool.

    therefore they don’t–even though SR 1.5 lays them out.

    And show me where SR 1.5 deals with resource limits, growth, fungibility, thermodynamics, permaculture/regenerative systems, etc? Neither they nor you know what you don’t know.

    You accuse me of not listening.

    No, Kevin. What I accuse you of is being utterly typical in your placement of style over substance, personal feelings over logic and reason, emotionality over rationality and personal ego before humanity.

    The truth is, I’ve taken more trouble to listen to you than just about anyone else on this site, over the years.

    And that means nearly nothing. It’s like saying you’re not a Clinton, you’re an Obama.

    Yet after those years of listening and questioning, I still have yet to hear a clear articulation of how Regenerative Governance, or ‘simplicity’, can possibly do what you claim.

    You have. You don’t understand, cannot conceptualize that simplicity is actually simple.

    Or of what it would look like in practice, as opposed to principle.

    Bullshit. If that is the case it means you have a very poor understanding of what egalitarian decision-making is. You’ve even seen it in practice if you watched the video on Cheran. But, of course, that would mean having to admit I might be on to something, and that is your true problem: You absolutely will not allow yourself to admit I suggest the ONLY workable plan at this point in time not dependent on the non-existent and unproven.

    I actually like the principles you’ve put forward

    I did not put them forward. E-mail Holmgren so you can stop pretending I’m your bogeyman.

    and will admit that they’ve influenced my thinking on the topics of mitigation and adaptation.

    Then focus on that instead of this shit.

    But you aren’t going to convince many until you can provide more than general principles.

    I *have.*

    You need a clear vision

    Could not be clearer.

    and you need some sort of roadmap.

    NO, NO, NO. Learn the principles: Design in place; let design emerge, etc.

    No one solution set works for every location. You must learn and apply the principles, you must understand and accept the thermodynamics, you must learn and understand the resource issues, and etc.

    The problem here is you want me to tell you answers I have told you MANY times emerge from the principles, the design process, and some background awareness of other things I have mentioned in this message… and more.

    You’re far from either, as far as I can tell.

    No. I told you: Learn permaculture. Review The Oil Drum archives. Study aboriginal patterns. Stop asking me to spoon-feed you. You want that, pay me for the permaculture course and I’ll download that and all the other info in my head into yours. Otherwise, none of this is beyond you; it’s out of reach because you have not extended your hand yet to grasp it.

    You can try to provide some of that, or you can keep insulting people whom you claim to want to convince.

    Again, I HAVE. Repeatedly. You simply don’t believe it is all as simple as I have said. You are institutionalized to complexity and cannot get your head around simplicity.

    And don’t be a hypocrite.

    Sorry, this is rushed. I could add more nuance, but no more time.

  11. 211
    Mr. Know It All says:

    200 Hank
    “Sounds like a hostage situation to me, comrade.”

    I guess you are correct, Hank. We are all hostage to each other. So it seems like if we could agree to each give up something to get what we want then it would be a win-win. Not perfect, but better than bickering forever and getting nowhere, right?

    The left has no credibility – they’ve proven beyond a reasonable doubt that they are sleazebags. Sleazy HRC and the DNC cheats BS out of the nomination. CNN gives her the debate questions before the debate. Sleazy DF with-holds evidence from the Judiciary Committee until the last minute; her “star” witness names 4 accusers and each one of them swear in writing that it never occurred; the “star” witness can’t remember one thing about the incident except that BK was there and was guilty. Porn-star attorney brings forth another “star” witness who claims to have gotten gang r’ed at 10 parties and remembers BK may have been there but noone else remembers a thing about it. HRC/DNC gets caught hiring Russians to write a dossier on DJT that is full of absolute BS; then they all blame the election loss on the Russians, and have 2 year investigation that has produced not one iota of evidence of Russian collusion. Then they pay peasants to march from Honduras to the USA to make a scene on the border just in time for the election. And now they’ve hired a nut in Florida to send phony “bombs” in an attempt to make it appear that a DJT supporter did it; again, just in time for the elections. That’s what your side has done. It’s proven.

    That said, I’ll try to help you on AGW (probably will not make any difference but I’ll try) if you want. State your wish list. What is it you want the USA to do to help AGW? No we will not be ruled by the UN or globalist treaties, etc – we’ll do it on our own – they can do what they want. Most on this board seem to think the rest of the world are such angels on AGW so they are perfectly capable of doing their part without treaties with the USA, right? List your demands.

    Nigel, most deaths in the US with firearms are suicides. Many nations have higher rates of suicides than the US, and we have more guns than all of them. If people want to kill themselves, that’s their business. Semi-auto rifles kill very few people in the US, but many of the recent mass killers bought their guns legally – more proof that gun control does not work because criminals don’t care what the law is. Most homicides are criminal on criminal, a win-win for society. And, no, not just “anyone” can buy a firearm. See BATFE form 4473 below. Guns are a right that protects us from the government, something several hundred million unarmed people learned the hard way in the not too distant past. Talk about something you know about – see BPL posts above – he has a way with words.
    Homicide stats:
    https://www.statista.com/statistics/195325/murder-victims-in-the-us-by-weapon-used/

    BATFE 4473:
    https://www.atf.gov/file/61446/download

  12. 212
    Mr. Know It All says:

    210 – Killian
    “Sorry, this is rushed. I could add more nuance, but no more time.”

    Thank you for stopping it when you did.

  13. 213
    nigelj says:

    Killian @209

    “On top of that, the lowest hanging fruit – simply creating less stuff, thus less pollution, less CO2, et al. – isn’t even considered. I have said this far too many times without anyone here or elsewhere actually engaging in a useful or even half-serious rebuttal. It’s always waived off with the same arguments, essentially: People won’t! Your human nature argument. But I have pointed out two things.”

    Well some people may have said people won’t, but I have never said people won’t. I have already said it appears perfectly plausible for people to consider the well being of future generations and reduce pollution and use of stuff, and CO2 emissions, and I quoted a figure of using 25% less energy and materials. This alone would probably force the system towards steady state growth, would reduce the climate problem 25%, and at least sounds like a saleable number to start with as an immediate goal, and one with minimal negative effects.

    All I have said is I doubt you will get people to reduce use of energy and minerals by 90%, a number you have quoted from some think tank. Numbers are important. This number has huge consequences on peoples lives and ability to provide sufficient heating or even basic technology etcetera.

    I doubt they could be persuaded, unless it was for the sake for their immediate family but even then… and it’s just not entirely rational or clever to go that far. At the very least we would have to approach it slowly. That is just my opinion. The optimal number is probably elusive, and in there somewhere.

    “Certainly, aboriginal groups have engaged in competition, including warfare, but what is never stated is these groups likely spent enormous periods of time in isolation so that re-encountering other humans seemed like meeting a humanity they never knew existed, or that came from far away and long ago. They had become “other.”

    Makes sense. Humans are probably basically similar in nature, but when they have evolved independently as in your example, and encounter new groups then they are on alert. Superficial differences put both groups on alert as well, but they are only superfical differences. Sadly this is also the basic reason for racism and suspicion of foreigners and starts wars.

    But remember in todays world there are deeper cultural differences that require some work to overcome.

    But that was never really my point. Humans everywhere today tend to be a complex combination of selfishness and altrusim that is partly genetic and evolutionary in origin. Thats what the science says. Shifting this balance in some way towards greater altruism would be a good thing, but is going to be hard work. There are utopians and people who dismiss utopia and idealism. I would say Im getting tired of fanatics on either side of that equation, but gently nudging society towards altruism is probably the best we can do. But how? That is the real question.

    “Except that ‘simplicity’ hasn’t been “proven”, either–not when it comes to sustaining the existing global population (let alone the predicted one). Of course it has. It supported tens of millions in the Americas in pre-Columbian times and still maintains our aboriginal cousins. ”

    Well yes, but they lived a primitive lifestyle for want of a better word, and you have said elsewhere that this is not what you promote.

    But look I think your comments are constructive.

  14. 214

    Killian, #210–

    You think you’ve been clear.

    I’m telling you that you haven’t.

    I understand that that must be frustrating, especially given that you think that you’ve got the only true solution to the historical situation we are all facing. But if you want to convince, you need to take responsibility for your own communications and stop blaming everyone else for not ‘getting it.’ It may well feel like ‘spoon-feeding’ to you. Well, too bad. If that’s what it takes, better do it.

  15. 215
    Hank Roberts says:

    pay me for the permaculture course

    You should provide a link to what you’re selling.
    You can put it behind your name by entering the URL in the “Website” box provided for replies.

  16. 216
    nigelj says:

    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/environment/news/article.cfm?c_id=39&objectid=12151623

    “WWF warns of cataclysmic decline in global wildlife”.

    Much of this is related to habitat loss, and over exploitation, as well as climate change, but it is worth a serious read.

  17. 217
    Carrie says:

    The green state of mind Written by PM Narendra Modi | October 4, 2018

    The world needs to shift to a paradigm of environmental philosophy that is anchored in environmental consciousness rather than merely government regulations. India can be at the forefront of change.
    https://indianexpress.com/article/opinion/columns/narendra-modi-un-champions-of-the-earth-award-swachh-bharat-environment-5385279/

    Mood music while reading https://youtu.be/YYmRA45BZmc

  18. 218
    Killian says:

    Re: Resplandy

    1. Sensitivity at high end. Yet another thing observations made a near-certainty. Skyrocketeers win again.

    2. If they recalibrated ocean warming, wouldn’t that change global temps? If so, what’s the new temp estimate? If not, huh?

    3. Explains where all this extreme weather is coming from temp-wise.

    4. The Arctic/Antarctica = Oh, isht!

    5. Bugs = See above.

    Etc.

  19. 219
    Killian says:

    #214 Kevin, I have covered the majority of the principles. Over and over. You must choose to learn via books/online materials, or contact me about meeting off-list, but online or take a course online elsewhere or in person somewhere.

    I cannot do a course here. Without having a realitively nuanced sense of the principles, you won’t understand any analysis.

    You’ve had ten years. You’re right, there’s a blame game going on, but it’s on your part, not mine.

    Everything else is really straightforward: neighborhood/town council. City/area council. Bio-regional council.

    Get started on them.

    Etc.

    You won’t “get it” until you want to and make the effort. This isn’t like learning math. You have to put yourself into it.

    Hank: Shhh. Germane comments only. (You know he’s not really interested in understanding what I have said all these years, right?)

    Re #213 I never said people won’t

    1.You probably don’t recognize this as paraphrasing, so…

    2. you make a false statement, but likely mot intentionally. Or.. whatever.

    Stopped there. No point continuing when so far from the facts already.

    KIA: Shhh… Criminals are tried, not conversed with.

  20. 220
    Killian says:

    ralready.re #217:

    Env. Consciousness requires understanding how nature works > permaculture principles.

  21. 221
    nigelj says:

    MR KIA @211 honestly your argument is hopeless. Try telling the families of dead schoolchildren killed by manics with semi auomatics that most deaths are from “suicide”.

    There are about 10,000 homicides still a huge number and far from all gang related. Then there are vast numbers of injuries because of the incredibly high numbers of guns per capita, and slack regulations about how they are used and stored.

    The majority of people want better gun control according to polling, and are ignored by politicians. This is not democracy, its a dictatorship of vested interests in selling guns. You guys are being suckered.