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Forced Responses: Jan 2021

Filed under: — group @ 1 January 2021

A new open thread for climate solutions in the new year (and the soon-to-be new US administration actions). As for the climate science open threads, please try to renew your commitment to constructive dialog that prioritises light over heat (like LED bulbs for instance!). Thanks!

632 Responses to “Forced Responses: Jan 2021”

  1. 551
    Piotr says:

    David B. Benson (539): Piotr @ 535 “Rolling blackouts are hazardous

    Huh? What is _this_ supposed to do with my argument in (535)?
    You have tried to blame the suffering on the wind, but as Kevin (337) has explained it to you – wind is not to blame here – it produced MORE than expected for this part of the year – it is the thermal generations that failed, I quote:
    Kevin (537): “ERCOT director told Bloomberg that problems were widespread across generating sources, including coal, natural gas, and even nuclear plants.
    And it was caused not by physics (since thermal being thermodynamically MORE effective the colder the weather gets which was my point in 535 ), but by OPERATIONAL reasons: again Kevin (537):
    …Authorities will probably need several weeks, if not longer, to fully understand how so much generating capacity was taken offline at what turned out to be a period of critical demand.

    So your (539) mansplaining how the shortage of power is hazardous – has NOTHING to do with my criticism of your earlier arguments in my (535), and therefore constitutes “ changing the subject” / “moving the goalposts“. Wasn’t anything about NOT doing THAT in these RC regulations you like so much to quote to me, when appealing to the RC authorities to ban me?

    And in the future, when you REPLY to somebody’s posts – don’t assume that you are throwing the pearls of wisdom in front of the pigs, hence the onus is on them to figure to what argument you have just brilliantly referred.
    Would save us time AND you blabbering on the unrelated subjects – if you can’t find the words which your answer is supposed to falsify, maybe you have drifted too far from the subject.

  2. 552
    Piotr says:

    KIA(541) “Ohmy goodness. Unprecedented winter storm kills at least 4 in Texas. Temperatures AND ENTROPY reach absolute zero

    Yes, KIA, temperatures in Texas reached “absolute zero”. Or as we say on RC – “ reached KIA“.

    KIA(541) “ Al Gore, where are you?
    I don’t think Al Gore is the specialist YOU need.

  3. 553
    nigelj says:

    Remember the previous discussions about geoengineering and its risks? This is new research on the issue:

    https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10584-021-03017-z

    “Updated and outdated reservations about research into stratospheric aerosol injection”

    “In this paper, we seek to ground discussions of the governance of stratospheric aerosol injection research in recent literature about the field including an updated understanding of the technology’s deployment logistics and scale, pattern of effects, and research pathways. Relying upon this literature, we evaluate several common reservations regarding the governance of pre-deployment research and testing including covert deployment, technological lock-in, weaponization, slippery slope, and the blurry line between research and deployment…..”

    Remember Lewis Cleverdon worried about the risk of one desperate rogue country going it alone with aerosol injection geoengineering. Seems that doesnt seem likely unless it was a very large wealthy country:

    “One reservation that motivates a subset of those who seek to limit SAI research is the prospect of covert deployment, wherein a rogue actor attempts to geoengineer the world without international knowledge or consent (Victor, 2008). The rogue actor could be a climate-damaged country or a large corporation, but is more colorfully envisioned as “Greenfinger” (Victor, 2008), “a self-appointed protector of the planet.”

    “Recent research into SAI has begun to illuminate what deployment in the next few decades would require aeronautically, operationally, and financially. Irrespective of which aerosols are lofted in an SAI program, for them to endure in the atmosphere for 12 to 18 months rather than a few days, they must be dispersed at an altitude of roughly 20 km (Rasch et al., 2008a; Rasch et al. 2008b; Pierce et al. 2010)—nearly double the normal airliner cruising altitude. To cool the earth by a substantial amount—say 1 °C—one would have to loft roughly five million metric tons of aerosols annually to this high perch (Smith, 2020). Once started, the deployment would need to be continuous or the cooling effect would cease (Pierce et al. 2010). By far, the cheapest way to haul this enormous mass of material to the lower stratosphere year-round, for decades, would be via a fleet of newly designed, airliner-sized, high-altitude tankers (McClellan et al., 2012; Smith & Wagner, 2018). A fleet large enough to loft five million tons of aerosols annually to the stratosphere would be on the order of 150 aircraft and require an annual budget on the order of $18 billion in 2020 USD (Bingaman et al., 2020; Smith, 2020). While the fleet and deployed mass requirements noted here assume a thoughtful injection program intended to be global in impact and hemispherically balanced, even a program intended to cool just one region would require a quarter to half the activity required for a global program, rendering it still a massive endeavor.”

  4. 554

    @551:

    You have tried to blame the suffering on the wind, but as Kevin (337) has explained it to you – wind is not to blame here – it produced MORE than expected for this part of the year – it is the thermal generations that failed

    Yes, and no.

    In many cases, the thermal generation didn’t fail; the just-in-time delivery of natural gas was unavailable due to higher priority of space heating.  On-site fuel supplies have been removed because reliability of supply is NOT something that the system will pay for.  And apparently, natural gas wells themselves were having problems functioning due to the cold, knocking out fuel supplies at the source.

    Even if wind was performing according to projections, can you REALLY put a high value on an energy source that performs at less than 3% of rated output when you need it most?  Should you be giving it out-of-market subsidies like mandates and RECs?

    Take those subsidies away, and most wind farms would probably go out of business.

    If nuclear power was given the same preferences and subsidies as unreliable wind and PV, we’d probably be building our 20th AP1000 already and have plans to build at least another 100.  We’d have a far more reliable electric grid and we would NEVER have issues of fuel delivery for those plants in the middle of winter.  Nuclear power plants refuel in the spring and fall, so they can operate at 100% during the summer and winter demand peaks.

    I’ve long argued that STOCKPILES of energy are the most important factor for stability of the grid.  Wind and PV store nothing.  Neither do NG plants running on cheap (interruptible) gas supplies.  Impoundment-fed hydro stockpiles energy in the water behind the dam.  Coal piles can hold months worth of fuel.  And when a nuclear plant refuels, it typically runs until the next outage a year and a half away and often produces power “breaker-to-breaker” (from the restart to the scheduled shutdown).  Having something around 15,000 GWh produced from a few measly tons of LEU in Zircaloy tubes is the densest stockpile of energy we’ve ever had.

  5. 555
    Mr. Know It All says:

    554 – nigelj
    “A fleet large enough to loft five million tons of aerosols annually to the stratosphere would be on the order of 150 aircraft and require an annual budget on the order of $18 billion in 2020 USD (Bingaman et al., 2020; Smith, 2020).”

    Bill Gates is going to geterdone:

    https://www.forbes.com/sites/arielcohen/2021/01/11/bill-gates-backed-climate-solution-gains-traction-but-concerns-linger/?sh=642d5e85793b

    Quote: “Microsoft’s MSFT +0.4% billionaire founder Bill Gates is financially backing the development of sun-dimming technology that would potentially reflect sunlight out of Earth’s atmosphere, triggering a global cooling effect. ”

    Check and see if he is buying materials to make aerosols. :)

  6. 556
    nigelj says:

    Part of the cause of power shortages in Texas right now is because Texas isnt connected to the nationwide power grid, so it cannot import power, apart from very limited quantities from Mexico. This is because Texas wanted to avoid federal regulation of its grid which is mandatory if they interconnect to the wider nationwide grid. Seems like Texas has inflicted a wound on itself.

    https://www.king5.com/article/news/verify/texas-independent-power-grid/507-6192cf48-4bf4-4a82-8586-0e5c0a549707

    And apparently approx. 150 people have carbon monoxide poisoning from running their cars in garages to keep warm, according to New Zealand media. Ouch.

  7. 557
    David B. Benson says:

    Piotr @511 — Again you assume something that I never wrote. I was only noting, to my surprise, that wind turbines froze.

  8. 558
    Piotr says:

    Nuclear Poet (554) “ Yes, and no. In many cases, the thermal generation didn’t fail; the just-in-time delivery of natural gas was unavailable due to higher priority of space heating.

    Do you have to surrender your comprehension, when you sign up for a cheerleader for the nuclear? How are your words above a correction (“Yes, and no“) or new information, compared to my in the post to which you “reply”:

    Piotr (551) “[The failure of the thermal generation] was caused not by physics (since thermal being thermodynamically MORE effective the colder the weather gets which was my point in 535 ), but by OPERATIONAL reasons”

    [I have capitalized these words already in (551), but apparently – to no effect …;-)]

    Nuclear Poet (554):” Even if wind was performing according to projections, can you REALLY put a high value on an energy source that performs at less than 3% of rated output when you need it most?

    Eh, you Poets, you – making up numbers for a stronger poetic effect:

    https://time.com/5939749/texas-storm-power-outage-wind-turbines/
    “[wind] tends to ebb in the winter, so the grid operator typically assumes that the turbines will generate only about 19% to 43% of their maximum output.”

    “19% to 43%” does not round up to “3%”, my dear Poet. Particularly when: “Even so, wind generation has actually exceeded the grid operator’s daily forecast through the weekend.”

    And since it is mainly the “ORGANIZATIONAL” failure of thermal generation to provide enough energy in the season WHEN THEY WERE SUPPOSED to provide it
    – it is not a black eye for the wind, but licencia poetica aka “red herring”. From the same source:
    “The performance of wind and solar is way down the list among the smaller factors in the disaster that we’re facing,” Daniel Cohan, associate professor of environmental engineering at Rice University, said in an interview. Blaming renewables for the blackouts “is really a red herring.”

    And isn’t that interesting that while correcting me on the claims I didn’t make, our Poet is mum on my arguments I did make, and to him:
    ===
    Nuclear Poet (305): “ Damn, if we only had some power source which produced energy 24/7 and was especially effective when it’s cold out.”

    Piotr(315): Looking at https://www.eia.gov/todayinenergy/detail.php?id=42915 [the demand in the US is about 25% HIGHER “ when it’s hot out” than “ when it’s cold out“]
    And if the world is supposed to go nuclear – the vast majority of the new nukes will be in the countries where it is also the heat, not the cold that causes the highest demand. EVEN MORE SO in the future – you know “Global Warming”, higher probability of heat waves and droughts?

    Also Piotr (535) to DBB: “at the very times when we need the electricity generation MOST (local summer):
    – the nukes (and other thermal): are the LEAST EFFECTIVE
    – the solar and the wind: are the MOST EFFECTIVE”
    With friends like you, why would nuclear need enemies? ;-)”

  9. 559
    Ray Ladbury says:

    Mr. Kia: “Oh my goodness. Unprecedented winter storm kills at least 4 in Texas. Temperatures AND ENTROPY reach absolute zero, and 43 million without power. Al Gore, where are you?”

    Just curious. Does it hurt to be that stupid?

  10. 560

    KIA, #547–

    Now do you understand why Trump got us out of the stoopid Paris agreement?

    Certainly I do, but apparently you don’t. Trump pulled us out of Paris because he is and was a total stooge for fossil fuel. Period.

  11. 561
    Piotr says:

    Nigel (553):” The deployment would need to be continuous or the cooling effect would cease (Pierce et al. 2010)

    … and all the pent-up heating would strike at once – thus robbing the ecosystems’ ability to adapt (migration and evolution takes time …).

    And as usually, increasing albedo does nothing to alleviate ocean acidification – quite the OPPOSITE
    – by addressing the most obvious symptom (temp. increase) takes the urgency of CO2 emissions mitigation
    – plus adds some extra CO2 to build and operate the fleet of sulfate tankers, to produce and haul “five million tons of aerosols annually to the stratosphere”
    And hauling it up is not all – you can’t just dump your cargo in one piece at 20 km and fly home down – you have to fly for hours on end in _the very thin air_ spraying your cargo over large areas.

    Win-win! ;-)

  12. 562
    Piotr says:

    David B. Benson (557): Piotr @511 — Again you assume something that I never wrote. I was only noting, to my surprise, that wind turbines froze.

    Why would I “assume” when I can … READ what you WROTE??? E.g.:

    DBB WROTE in (539): “ Piotr @ 535 — It is freezing cold in Texas just now. Rolling blackouts are hazardous.

    How is THAT “ only noting that, to [your] surprise, wind turbines froze“???

    And how does your “I was only noting, to my surprise, that wind turbines froze. …. disprove my (551), in which I pointed that your “ Rolling blackouts are hazardous” DID NOT falsify my argument for (535) ?

    You obviously don’t? can’t? understand what other people say and your cryptic non-answers, dropping random references (“Piotr @ 535”, “Piotr @ 511”) – pretend to answer the identified posts, when in reality they HAVE NOTHING TO DO WITH THEM.

    It’s almost as if you were a high-school AI project with ADD, trying to pass the Turing test.

    In an off-chance that you are NOT a bot – next time – save us the time and yourself the embarrassment, AND QUOTE the damn words to which you are “replying”.

  13. 563

    E-P 540: Greg Barton over on r/nuclear says there are no nuclear outages in Texas.

    BPL: Gee, I wonder why everybody is reporting that there ARE? Must be the liberal media lying again.

  14. 564

    KIA 547: In 2020 China built 3 times more coal fired power plants than the REST OF THE WORLD COMBINED!

    BPL: That’s because China has a bigger electrical grid than the

  15. 565
  16. 566

    E-P 554: Take those subsidies away, and most wind farms would probably go out of business.

    BPL: I’ll see all wind subsidies taken away if you agree to repeal of the Price-Anderson Act.

  17. 567
  18. 568
    mike says:

    GUEST POSTS 15 February 2021 8:00
    Guest post: How global warming is making power plants produce less electricity

    “The coal, gas and nuclear power plants that generate most of the world’s electricity have to be kept cool in order to function properly. However, this will be increasingly challenging as the world gets warmer.

    Waste heat from these facilities is typically released into the atmosphere or nearby water sources. During heatwaves or droughts, excessive heat or a lack of water makes it much harder for plants to be kept cool.

    When this happens, the plants must be curbed, meaning electricity output is cut. This often comes just as electricity demand peaks due to people’s increasing reliance on air conditioning to keep cool…”

    https://www.carbonbrief.org/guest-post-how-global-warming-is-making-power-plants-produce-less-electricity?utm_campaign=Carbon%20Brief%20Weekly%20Briefing&utm_content=20210219&utm_medium=email&utm_source=Revue%20newsletter

  19. 569
    jgnfld says:

    @560

    Trump pulled out of Paris for ff interests, true. But the main reason was to throw red meat out there to his base saying: THIS’ll really pwn those libbies, hee, hee, hee.

  20. 570
    Michael Sweet says:

    This news article reports https://www.khou.com/article/news/local/austin-texas-power-outages-austin-energy-governor-greg-abbott/269-3d18b75c-9037-45bf-92dc-9906b67ae23b
    “The governor said the South Texas Project nuclear power plant southwest of Houston came back online on Wednesday, allowing 6,000 megawatts of power to be added back to the Texas grid, enough to power around 1.2 million households.”

    That would be more power than wind was expected to produce. Since most of the wind generators are working this nuclear unit alone caused more electricity to be removed from the grid than all renewable energy sources combined. I saw something that suggested broken water pipes caused the nuclear plant to go offline but I could not find a reference to that today.

    Claims that no nuclear went offline are deliberate lies.

  21. 571
    Michael Sweet says:

    Apparently the South Texas Project has only 2560 MW of electrical generating power. The reactors are about 7,700 MW thermal but most of the heat is released into the environment as waste heat.
    The governor must have reported the thermal capacity to make it look like more power was being added to the grid than was actually added.

  22. 572
    mike says:

    https://www.cnbc.com/2021/02/19/degrowth-pushing-social-wellbeing-and-climate-over-economic-growth.html

    LONDON — A group of economists, ecologists and anthropologists is seeking to challenge a central plank of global economic policy — that more is better.

    The “degrowth” movement has received renewed attention in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic after the spread of the virus last year coincided with the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression of the 1930s…

    “Something that the people who dismiss degrowth don’t take into account is that economic growth is just not viable as a mechanism for future prosperity. In fact, it is associated with future cataclysm”

    “As a society, we are so locked into the ideology of growth that it becomes almost impossible for anyone to question it. Growthism has a kind of totalitarian character, to the point of precluding critical thought,” Jason Hickel, an economic anthropologist and senior lecturer at Goldsmiths, University of London, told CNBC via telephone.

    “We need to be able to have an open, democratic conversation about it.”
    What is degrowth trying to do?

    The objective of degrowth is to reframe humanity’s goals to address the climate emergency by dramatically scaling down aggregate energy and resource use back into balance with the living world.

    At the same time, the idea is seeking to reduce inequality and improve wellbeing, through measures such as job guarantees, a shorter working week and potentially a universal basic income.”

    On a personal basis, I have already embraced degrowth to the greatest extent possible within my life. It makes sense and works fine for me.

    Cheers

    Mike

  23. 573
    nigelj says:

    Trump pulled out of Paris because of ff interests and to annoy liberals, but also because hes a big attention seeker. Without all that attention he feels lonely.

  24. 574
    Killian says:

    Megafauna: It wasn’t us. The “hunted to extinction” model never made sense: 1. Where are all the bones, similar to shell mounds? 2. Where are all the large traps they used to drive herds off cliffs, etc? There would have to be a LOT of them. There aren’t. 3. Humans were in NA thousands of years before the extinctions and 4. human populations grow slowly among H-G groups. 5. The timing matches the rapid warming and rapid cooling periods of the Dryas periods, etc. 6. The cooling also is associated with ending the Clovis culture. 7. The cooling was very abrupt, reversing many generations of adaptations to much warmer conditions after the glacial period, making adaptation difficult.

    https://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-021-21201-8

  25. 575
    Piotr says:

    Mike (568) – I have discussed it, and more, in this thread – posts (300),(315) and (535) https://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2021/01/forced-responses-jan-2021/comment-page-6/

    And hot temps not only cause the problem with getting rid of the waste heat,
    but it actually cuts to their THERMODYNAMIC effectiveness: the colder the coolant – the more electricity you can generate per reactor or per ton of coal or gas.

    Which means the electricity generation would drop not for one but TWO reasons:

    1. as your guest said – some reactors will shut down or reduce their generation because there is not enough water to cool them or the rivers are already too warm to add the waste heat to them

    2. BUT ALSO, those that continue at max – will be LESS effective (produce less electricity per reactor or ton of coal or gas)

    Which means that they produce the LEAST electricity at the time when we need it MOST. Well, at least in the US, where summer demand is about 20-25% higher than in winter, and most of the world where the peak demand is in summer
    – particularly during the heat waves. And things will get warmer in the future pretty much everywhere.

    So what to do the drop of thermal efficiency in summer?

    1. Find an easy technology fix. Nuclear Poet tried: “ Nah, that’s what fan-driven cooling towers and emergency wells are for”.
    Unfortunately the people actually _doing_ nuclear are not so optimistic than the nuclear-theorist: world-nuclear.org: “Hardly any US generating capacity uses dry cooling, and in the UK it has been ruled out as impractical and unreliable (in hot weather) for new nuclear plants.”. Plus it consumes energy for running the fans.

    2. OVERBUILD – which means higher costs of energy and an increase GHG emissions/ MWhr (particularly for coal and gas, to smaller extent for nuclear)

    3. Storage – tough since the storage would have to be HUGE. Here is why:
    For solar – you don’t need much storage – only enough for the day’s surplus to cover (the lower) demand during the following night.
    For wind – probably not much more – perhaps for a few back-to-back days without wind?

    BUT for thermal – we are not talking 12hr, or even a few days – we are talking SEASONS – you would have to store energy from winter until summer. Which means that this storage capacity would have to be HUGE.

    4. Now, if we only had an energy source that would match the demand – be MOST effective when the demand is the highest … Did somebody say: solar and wind? Solar is obviously much more effective in summer (and during day when the diurnal peaks of demand happen) and as learned from Texas – so is the wind (it cover 24% of electricity during a year – but up to >60% in summer).
    So wind and solar a great match for nuclear and vice versa. With hydro providing virtual and pumped storage – helping in to smooth out the relationship.

    For some reason our RC nuclear enthusiasts see the world in terms of competition, and zero-sum game, not in terms of cooperation, coordination and making each other stronger (i.e. cheaper). So instead, they work hard to discredit renewables. Our Engineer even coined a perfect discrediting name for them: the “Ruinables“ – as any Engineer worth his salt will tell you – pun is the most refined form of an argument ;-)))

    But if they thought this through – instead of undermining/discrediting – they should PROMOTE the renewables – since it is the renewables that can provide their nukes with a way reduce the costs (and GHG emissions), by removing their need to OVERBUILD to cover the summer peaks in the differences between the max demand and their lowest effectiveness in generation. Renewables are your friend, not your enemy….;-) Let’s see whether you are open to a (falsifiable) argument, or already went too deep in dismissing renewables to change now.

  26. 576

    jgn, #569–

    Trump pulled out of Paris for ff interests, true. But the main reason was to throw red meat out there to his base saying: THIS’ll really pwn those libbies, hee, hee, hee.

    Well, it’s somewhat speculative, I admit, and way OT besides, but I stand by my original contention. IMO, Trump didn’t need the denialist tactics to delight his base (though they do like it, because it’s part of the tribal dogma): the defense of white supremacy in all its manifestations, combined with his characteristically nasty style, did that more than sufficiently.

    Shilling for fossil fuel, however, brings in $$, and in no small way–and Trump never likes to spend his own. (Note, too, that Pence’s documented ties with the Koch network go back at least to 2009.) I truly believe that a major strand of the Maladministration’s very existence was from the ground up the promotion of fossil fuel and its interests.

    Trump probably really does believe that FF is synonymous with “American greatness”, but that’s icing on the cake, because his motivations are based on self-interest, not on ‘belief.’ His ‘beliefs’ have changed; his essential greed, never.

  27. 577
    Piotr says:

    Killian (575) “ Megafauna: It wasn’t us. The “hunted to extinction” model never made sense

    What about the extinctions in places that didn’t suffer as dramatic climatic changes as North America, not having recently half of the continent covered by a couple kms of ice and being much more affected by the your “rapid warming and rapid cooling periods of the Dryas periods” – if we agree that they were much more dramatic in high lats of N. hemisphere than globally. Yet it was South America that “lost 52 unique genera of large mammals [making it] the most severe loss seen on any continent”.

    How about the correlation between human arrivals and extinctions:
    https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/ecog.01566

    Lewis Bartlett, the lead author: “As far as we are concerned, this research is the nail in the coffin of this 50-year debate – humans were the dominant cause of the extinction of megafauna. What we don’t know is what it was about these early settlers that caused this demise. Were they killing them for food, was it early use of fire or were they driven out of their habitats? Our analysis doesn’t differentiate, but we can say that it was caused by human activity more than by climate change. It debunks the myth of early humans living in harmony with nature.”

    Not exactly the “ It wasn’t us” conclusion.
    And of the only two regions they couldn’t get a good correlation is
    1. Africa – not surprisingly since this where we started and where animals
    had flat learning curve to fear and avoid us,
    2. temperate and tropical Asia – which likely were not as affected by your Dryas climatic fluctuations as N. America.
    So things may be much nuanced that your “never made sense” would allow.

    To preempt the unnecessary discussion, I am not saying climate change had no influence – I think that it and humans are synergistic in that – we hit the megafauna when they are already vulnerable by climate change. Plus through fire
    and, later, agriculture – we contributed not only to the habitat destruction,
    but also to climate change.

    More importantly, at present and in near future, it is the climate change, together with habitat alteration that is likely to be the main driver of extinction, particularly of smaller animals (in killing the big ones we seem to be doing a good job even without the climate change).

    _If_ the human-caused extinction “never made sense” to you and the reason why you are posting on RC about it, is because you thought that it takes away from the urgency to stop the climate change, I don’t think it does:
    even if the Pleistocene megafauna extinction was caused by humans, it does not imply that the climate change cannot cause major extinctions. To claim otherwise would be the same type of fallacy as that old denier’s cliche that if climate change happened before humans, then “ it’s not us>/i>” what changes the climate now. Both are wrong: we can change climate, even if didn’t in the past, and climate change can cause mass extinctions, even if it didn’t kill the Pleistocene megafauna.

  28. 578
    nigelj says:

    Seems like a well grounded, objective sort of book. Covers several climate issues. : “Q&A: Is Elizabeth Kolbert’s New Book a Hopeful Look at the Promise of Technology, or a Cautionary Tale?”

    https://insideclimatenews.org/news/14022021/elizabeth-kolbert-under-a-white-sky-q-and-a/

  29. 579
    Killian says:

    mike says:
    19 Feb 2021 at 3:08 PM

    https://www.cnbc.com/2021/02/19/degrowth-pushing-social-wellbeing-and-climate-over-economic-growth.html

    LONDON — A group of economists, ecologists and anthropologists is seeking to challenge a central plank of global economic policy — that more is better.

    The “degrowth” movement has received renewed attention in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic after the spread of the virus last year coincided with the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression of the 1930s…

    “Something that the people who dismiss degrowth don’t take into account is that economic growth is just not viable as a mechanism for future prosperity. In fact, it is associated with future cataclysm”

    “As a society, we are so locked into the ideology of growth that it becomes almost impossible for anyone to question it. Growthism has a kind of totalitarian character, to the point of precluding critical thought,” Jason Hickel, an economic anthropologist and senior lecturer at Goldsmiths, University of London, told CNBC via telephone.

    These “degrowth” carpetbaggers drive me nuts. On the one hand, good people other than we “hippie” permaculturists, etc., are speaking, but at the same time, they don’t know what the hell they are talking about. To say we need to have “democratic conversations” about this is, again, both correct and flatly ignorant. It’s correct in that, as I have said all along, we must shift to egalitarian Commons, but is wrong in that we don’t need to discover what to do. We have known for at least a human generation what the fuck to do.

    Hickel, like everyone else, refuses to listen. They are johnny-come-lately zealots who are rediscovering the wheel, but coming up with an oval wheel.

    It’s also weird to have people here talking like I have been for over a decade. A few others have come and gone over the years, but the conversation is becoming a bit more mainstream on these boards. Refreshing, but weird…. and frustrating. It’s just….. maddening to have people like Hickel quoted at me for saying what I’ve been telling you all for all these years. I’d really like to see me quoted to Hickel, e.g., so he and his ilk can see what they think we need to discover is already very well known.

    Regenerative Governance: There is zero chance a regenerative future will not be something very close to this.

  30. 580
    Killian says:

    mike says:
    16 Feb 2021 at 4:44 PM

    The First Farmer in the US to Sequester Carbon for Cash Earns $115,000 For His New Planting Strategies

    https://www.goodnewsnetwork.org/us-policy-to-feature-carbon-credits-from-regenerative-farming-practices/?utm_campaign=newsletters&utm_medium=weekly_mailout&utm_source=16-02-2021

    God, what a horrible idea. This kind of stupidity is going to kill us all. First, if that guy is growing corn, I doubt he’s getting any carbon in the soil. He’s likely just breaking even. But, I guess they are actually measuring the carbon sequestration rather than assuming via modeling?

  31. 581
    nigelj says:

    Regarding megafauna extinctions.

    New Zealand’s indigenous people are called Maori. They arrived by canoe from eastern polynesia around 1300. There were pre Maori people, a small group called a group called Moriori but they inhabited only a couple of small offshore islands. So Maori are indigenous for all practical purposes.

    I’m no expert in any of this but my understanding is the Maori combined hunter gathering with a simple yet in some ways sophisticated farming culture. The Maori caused the extinction of approximately half the native bird species for food and feathers for decorative cloaks. Its believed by experts this is because the birds had no fear of humans, and several species were flightless, but anyway maori didn’t conserve the bird populations terribly well. There is evidence Maori conserved plant resources better.

    There were very few native mammals and reptiles, nothing as a food source. Maori brought with them introduced species of rats and dogs and ate those for meat. I wonder if they were careless with conserving the birds, because they knew they had these other resources to fall back on, and of course introduced rats and wild dogs would be hard to wipe out once established.

    New Zealand was colonised by the British around 1840, with waves of settlers arriving for several decades and in fact immigration remains quite high. Basically the settlers nearly caused the extinction of all the remaining native bird population, for food and due to converting natural habitats to farming etcetera. For the last several decades the department of conservation has managed to stabilise and rescue several of the remaining native bird species.

    I don’t know of any climate factors being implicated in these bird extinctions. New Zealand’s climate has been fairly stable since the 1300s until the modern warming period.

    I agree with what Piotr says. Reasons for extinctions are probably often a nuanced, complex picture of multiple overlapping factors. One suspects different hunter gatherer groups and early farmers also had varying quality of conservation practices.

  32. 582

    #580, killian–

    First, if that guy is growing corn, I doubt he’s getting any carbon in the soil.

    I wouldn’t be too sure; after all, indigenous societies grew corn sustainably over much of North America for centuries. But the story is pretty light on detail, saying only that:

    Trey Hill uses clover, lentils, and rye as cover crops, and radishes and turnips for root crops as sequestration and regeneration agents in his corn field. Recently Hill’s farm of 10,000 acres sold its carbon credits for $16.50 per ton, through a Seattle-based startup called Nori, which allows companies and individuals to buy carbon credits to offset their own carbon emissions.

    As for measurement, if you follow the link given in the story, you can find this:

    We use COMET-Farm to generate a 10-year estimate of the changes in soil organic carbon from the adoption of regenerative practices. This platform makes it possible for Nori to not require any upfront soil samples to create a baseline. Here’s a recent webinar where we talk about this in more depth. At the end of 10 years, we require an audit which includes on-site sampling to create a final baseline.

    Here’s a link to their explainer on the modeling, and the data that growers must submit:

    https://docs.google.com/document/d/1fLSoI5XIIRRfkK6ceWXXvXxVfW8dB_u8i_gIDBu6j0k/preview

    So actual measurement of soil carbon only comes into play at the end of a 10-year project window.

    You can see the Harborview Farms profile here, and from thence link to the farm website, which is disturbingly professional in media terms.

    https://nori.com/supplier/1

    From that page, you find that corn is only one of the crops; the tally includes “Corn, soybeans, winter wheat, barley, cover crop seed.”

    https://www.harborviewfarms.net/

  33. 583
    mike says:

    At K: Yes, I agree with you. I don’t think these degrowth and/or would be carbon sequesterers are necessarily getting things right. I think I would see it much the same way that you do if I dove into the particulars. The important point is that these discussions are emanating from the mainstream these days. The needle is moving in that regard. It’s so hard to be patient and positive about our predicament and the wicked problems we face. I can be somewhat patient because I have accepted that it is likely that our species is not going to rise to the occasion and engineer a “soft landing” from our catastrophic fossil fuel adventure. I think the sixth great extinction is going to proceed and the planet will take it’s standard ten million years to recover to a verdant status after an extinction event. I have some connection and gratitude about the planet’s ability to bring forth life again and again.

    Cheers

    Mike

  34. 584
    Killian says:

    577 Piotr says:
    20 Feb 2021 at 1:17 PM

    Killian (575) “ Megafauna: It wasn’t us. The “hunted to extinction” model never made sense”

    What about the extinctions in places that didn’t suffer as dramatic climatic changes as North America…
    How about the correlation between human arrivals and extinctions:

    I guess you didn’t read the paper because it considers other issues and is presented as an *update* to previous findings. Just to be clear, they are offering *improved* information, in their opinion, so how does *older* information serve to knock holes in *newer* information and analysis?

  35. 585
    Killian says:

    582:

    So actual measurement of soil carbon only comes into play at the end of a 10-year project window.

    Insanity. But, hey, who wants to go in on a couple hundred acres and get paid for *maybe* sequestering carbon?

  36. 586
    Killian says:

    581:

    I agree with what Piotr says. Reasons for extinctions are probably often a nuanced, complex picture of multiple overlapping factors. One suspects different hunter gatherer groups and early farmers also had varying quality of conservation practices.

    Do we really need to state the obvious? Clearly, industrial societies are destroying the ecosystem, but they were all once H-G/farmers. Clearly, some took care of their environments and some didn’t. Those that best understood the implications, tried to stay within limits, others thought they could overcome them and were wrong. We don’t really need to discuss this. We need to discuss the primary causes, not the secondary or tertiary. That is what is at issue in this long-running debate and this new paper is, I think, almost certainly accurate. It fits what we know, the patterns, how indigenous people really behave rather than the stupid, violent brutes narrative, etc.

  37. 587
    Killian says:

    piotr, saying even more bizarre things than in the past:

    _If_ the human-caused extinction “never made sense” to you and the reason why you are posting on RC about it, is because you thought that it takes away from the urgency to stop the climate change

    Why speculate what someone thinks when you can ask? If that were my point, don’t you think I would have said so? It’s not as if I am shy with my opinions. How extinctions happen matters, and that these extinctions are more climate-related than anthropogenic is an important thing to understand. What kind of idiot would I have to be to pre-determine what I want the truth to be? Stupid people do that. I am not stupid.

    None of the evidence for a human cause makes sense if you have come to understand H-G ways more deeply than the stupid brutish idiot view. H-G’s know their environments intimately. They take pains to *not* deplete them. That alone is reason enough to think analyses that come to a different conclusion are flawed, and in part because most people still believe the brutish idiot nonsense.

    Those populations had already gone through an entire glacial age – several of them – so why did the Dryas period wipe them out? My guess is 1. some had moved into territories previously covered by ice and when those rapidly shifted back to glacial conditions, they couldn’t handle it due to the rate of change (glacial periods typically come on slowly enough for adaptation, but the YD onset **could have been** as short as some decades) and 2. those populations that remained more southerly still had adapted to a warmer climate over thousands of years and had a glacial climate thrust back on them in a relative blink of an eye.

    Likely more importantly, as the paper points out, the plant populations would have shifted dramatically from grasses to tundra, and that would have been difficult for some megafauna to deal with, but not others. E.g., mammoths and sloths would have had a very hard time adapting to heavily altered food sources while moose, elk, deer, etc., can adapt to a much wider range of food sources. And did not go extinct.

    The timing of extinctions – they did not all occur at exactly the same time – fit the new research. Not surprisingly, horses died out early on. This seems counter-intuitive in a human-caused theory: They must have been among the most difficult for humans to hunt (driving them over cliffs like buffalo was unlikely to work given their speed, intelligence, etc.), so why did they die out early on given they would have been among the most difficult to hunt? No H-G populations take the hardest route to food security.

    It doesn’t really matter exactly what caused the cooling, and I suspect it’s an all-of-the-above as there is strong evidence of eruptions in Europe, a bolide impact in NA and fresh water release (initiated by the bolide?) all happening during the period at the beginning of the YD.

    It’s important to repeat: The Clovis culture was *also* wiped out during this time, so the hypothesis would have to be they declined in tandem, but there was still a lot to eat on the continent and humans are far more flexible in their diets than large herbivores, and people can move much more quickly than animal populations can. It would make no sense the Clovis people would have stayed far north as things started to freeze up so they could finish off all the megafauna there.

    The paper actually addresses all your points so my conclusion is you did not read it, or did not read it thoroughly.

    I don’t think it does:
    even if the Pleistocene megafauna extinction was caused by humans, it does not imply that the climate change cannot cause major extinctions.

    Yeah, so try reading what’s written rather than constantly trying “gotcha!” crap, eh?

  38. 588
    Piotr says:

    Killian says (584) “ I guess you didn’t read the paper because [it is] an *update* to previous findings […]: they are offering *improved* information.

    I guess … you didn’t read the paper because [it is] NOT an *update* on the meta-analysis by Bartlett et al. 2015 I have asked about. They don’t even list Bartlett et al. in their references. And because you don’t know know that your paper does not falsify my paper, since yours is about N. America alone, mine is global. And the latter is much more relevant to the subject of this forum.

    And being different and *newer* does not automatically make it *improved*:

    Killian: Just to be clear, they are offering *improved* information, in their opinion, so how does *older* information serve to knock holes in *newer* information and analysis?

    The holes are knocked in your use of this *newer* information, since it is the *older* information that is

    1. more COMPREHENSIVE (all continents instead of one continent) ergo more relevant the effects of the GLOBAL climate change than your paper?

    2. more REPRESENTATIVE of magnitude of climate change in the near future
    than your than the NAmerica during the last deglaciation – where massive swings in temperature as the couple km thick ice covering most of Canada was melting, are much more than what we expect in the near future (100s of years from now).

    In other words – if you were looking for place and time where the climate change had the best chance to dominate the impact of humans – it would be there range of your paper – the US+ southern Canada 20-10 kyr BP. Extrapolation of the results to the global effects of the anthropogenic climate would be rather questionable.

    3. being different and “*never*” does not automatically to prove it is *better*
    and *improved* – this is still to be proven:
    – perhaps after agreeing on the common input dataset, set some of the data aside – running the two models side by side with the data not set-aside. Then comparing which model better recovered the set-aside data.
    Nothing of the sort has been attempted there – they don’t even list Bartlett et al. in the references.

    Until then – using different methods and published *later* does not prove _automatically_ *better*, even within the narrow area of N. America, MUCH LESS disproving the findings of Bartlett in places, where the climate forcing was much less dramatic than in the post-glaciation.

    And as I pointed before – it does not have – EVEN if it were humans who caused megafauna extinctions it would not prove that climate change cannot cause mass extinctions. “To think otherwise would be the same type of fallacy as that old denier’s cliche that if climate change happened before humans, then “ it’s not us” what changes the climate now. Both are wrong: we can change climate, even if we didn’t in the past, and climate change can cause mass extinctions, particularly of non-megafauna, even if it didn’t kill all Pleistocene megafauna.”

  39. 589
    Piotr says:

    Re Nigelj (581) – yes, this what I have meant by bringing up islands – they are typically colonized later than adjacent continents, and even though the regional changes in the climate should be the same – they often have the species that disappeared from the continent. Which then quickly disappear when humans move in – via direct hunt of megafauna, and destruction of habit and introduction of invasive species for the smaller fauna – which typically is less vulnerable to the overhunt than the megafauna.

    The smaller vulnerability of smaller fauna to overhunt has some exceptions – say, passenger pigeon or great auk – I guess by living so concentrated they have made the economy-of-scale of the megafauna hunt – applicable to these smaller species (the numbers compensating for the smaller individual size).

    The argument “ it’s not us“, it’s the climate change – not only is NOT critical to conveying the urgency of the climate change point (as discussed in my post), but could be used to weaken the protection of the fauna. In Canada, courts seem to side with native populations on their right to hunt and fish outside of the quota and protective seasons applying to others.
    The legal justification that this a part of the traditions that have not given up when signing the treaties. The concerns of what it will do to the conservation are waved off with the argument that the ancestors have lived in a harmony with nature, took only what’s needed, and didn’t drive any species into extinction. The “ it’s not us!” argument plays really well into that narrative.

    I don’t think this narrative holds true in general – I don’t think ANY group of people can be unconditionally trusted to do the right thing on their own (the tragedy of the commons may apply to _any_ group).
    I don’t think it holds true historically – it might have been “us” in many cases,
    mainly or partly, driving species to extinction, particularly in the locations less affected by climatic changes.
    And most importantly, I don’t think you can extrapolate the past onto the present – our ability to drive species into extinction with spears and arrows is not the same when we replaced them with high-powered rifles with night-sight scopes and gain much better access to the land via ATVs, snowmobiles, and power boats. And when we hunt the species that may be already pushed to the wall by all the non-hunting human impacts, including human-made climate change.

  40. 590
    Douglas says:

    Mal Adapted@430

    It’s been a few weeks but thank you for responding to my question which was if people here thought a carbon tax would still be effective given that clean energy is becoming cheaper and cheaper relative to fossil fuels in the absence of a carbon tax.

    A link you provided from 2019 showed that a broad swath of economists do think one would be very useful still. That’s probably convincing enough to me to answer the question in the affirmative. Thank you.

  41. 591
    sidd says:

    Re: ” actual measurement of soil carbon only comes into play at the end of a 10-year project window”

    That’s terrible. The first thing to do is sample the fields and measure soilC down to 1m with a hydraulic corer (corer usually available at nominal charge from local university extension program or grange) Then measure year by year to see if anything you do actually works.

    I looked at the NORI website and methodology and it seems to be based on soil types and ag practises. I do not think that is sufficient without frequent soil testing.

    sidd

    sidd

  42. 592
    nigelj says:

    Something useful from yale climate connections on the recent Texas power outage:

    https://yaleclimateconnections.org/2021/02/the-climate-lesson-from-texas-frozen-power-outages/

    Looks to me like the ERCOT system is very deficient. These guys don’t learn from history.

  43. 593
    Piotr says:

    Killian(587): piotr saying even more bizarre things than in the past. […] Why speculate what someone thinks when you can ask? If that were my point, don’t you think I would have said so?

    Why? Because I HAD READ your (574) and THERE WAS NOT a single word on WHAT you wanted to accomplish by posting this info on RC. So I tried Occams razor trying to come up with a simplest explanation: based on your past posts, you cut a Cassandraesque figure – an unjustly-maligned Prophet predicting the doom, yet nobody listens until it would be too late:
    – the “arrogant scientists” don’t invite you to the conferences (organized … by somebody else …)
    – that “bizarre” Piotr fellow – gives calculations showing that your
    More and more voices are saying what I have said for ten years: 90% reduction in consumption for the highest-consuming classes” is not ENOUGH, by far, to reach your “80-90% reduction of the CO2 emissions” target
    – Nigel, while acknowledging the urgency of mitigation, questions the rate and/or depth of the catastrophe you envision.

    In SUCH context, your attention grabbing: “ Megafauna: It wasn’t us. The “hunted to extinction” model never made sense” by pointing the finger at climate changes – adds to the darkness of the vision of the future you paint. Take that, Nigel et al.!

    And I said that “_If_” this were your reason for posting it – you DIDN’T NEED it,
    since the urgency of mitigation is true REGARDELSS whether “it was us” or “it wasn’t us” who killed the Pleistocene megafauna.

    Killian(587): Yeah, so try reading what’s written rather than constantly trying “gotcha!” crap, eh?

    Huh? That’s what you understood from my post??? Don’t take it personally, but finding problems in your posts is as hard as taking candy from a baby – I do it only when what you misrepresent has potential CONSEQUENCES:

    1. you overstate your case to other readers – the paper you used has to be confirmed by other work AND applied to the rest of the world to justify
    the rejection of the overhunting extinction model

    2. For the cause (urgency of the mitigation) – you had nothing to gain from
    it was not us!” – future climate change would be as urgent even if “it was us” who killed the megafauna in the past.

    3. yet your gaining nothing in p.(2), comes at the cost of an … inadvertent support of overhunting. In my country – the conservation rules take a back seat to the court and political decisions on traditional rights – with some groups fishing out of season and outside of the conservation quotas, or demanding continued hunt of the populations in a dramatic decline, because they have traditionally done so.

    The argument “our ancestors have been here for millennia and did not make animals extinct” is NEVER FAR behind. So they would love your: “Megafauna: It wasn’t us. The “hunted to extinction” model never made sense”.

    I am not saying we have to withdraw well-established knowledge if we don’t like its political use, I am merely saying we are NOT at the stage yet when your “ it wasn’t us!” is well-established knowledge: one paper, applying only to one continent, and to unique in the global context conditions, does not a new paradigm make.

  44. 594
    Killian says:

    On MMT: I had tried to explain that MMT is not a new type of economics, it’s a new view or understanding of what is happening that has been misunderstood for lo these so very many years. That was not something I read or heard, it was just obvious: MMT was not telling us there is a new thing called MMTism to replace Capitalism or Socialism, it was merely telling us we were mislabeling and misunderstanding what we were doing. Think of it as understanding fire, but thinking you made a fire because of magical elements in some stones you could get a spark from vs understanding why that spark happens and so being able to refine and improve it based on accurate science rather than assumptions based on magical ideas.

    I stumbled across a very nice discussion/interview with Stephanie Kelton where somewhere around the 52-minute mark she says MMT is not something you do, it’s a lens. I prefer to think of it as a more accurate description of what happens within an economy.

    “Roses are red
    violets are blue
    MMT is a lens
    not something you do.”

    Great video for any still wanting to be sure they understand Kelton’s “lens” of MMT. nilesj, you, in particular, should watch this as you have made that very mistake of saying we can do or use MMT or that you think doing MMT could be used partially but not 100%, which, according to her, indicates you don’t understand what it is.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XOBbRLtAtWU

  45. 595
    Killian says:

    588
    Piotr says:
    22 Feb 2021 at 11:25 PM

    Killian says (584) “ I guess you didn’t read the paper because [it is] an *update* to previous findings […]: they are offering *improved* information.

    I guess … you didn’t read the paper because [it is] NOT an *update* on the meta-analysis by Bartlett et al. 2015 I have asked about. They don’t even list Bartlett et al. in their references.

    This is why I do not talk to you. This is a new approach that *updates* our understanding of what happened. I did not say it was an update of a single fucking paper. The entire approach is new. Use your goddamned head and stop just being an ass because you can.

    And being different and *newer* does not automatically make it *improved*:

    Nobody said “automatically” merely because it exists. Straw Man.

    That is CLEAR from my verbiage and even more so from context. It *is* better. It fits the data better. It makes more sense. The data are clear.

    You prefer the old. It fits your existing view. An objective person recognizes the new paper is superior.

    it isn’t us.

    Yeah? Who said that? Nobody. I said it WASN’T us. You are the new king of the stupid Straw Man. I said not a single word about the current extinction being tied to the YD extinction processes. I made the very general point that climate does cause extinctions and it is important that we understand that, and this paper helps clarify that changes in climate can cause extinctions. But any idiot also would understand no two extinctions are the same. Except you, apparently?

  46. 596
    nigelj says:

    Piotr @58

    Another reason Maori wiped out several bird species is because a couple of these species had grown very large in size and also flightless, (eg the Moa) making them very tempting and easy targets for food. Effectively they were the apex predators because New Zealand had almost no mammal species to keep the bird population in check, only a few bat species and marine mammals like dolphins that had no relevance.And yes extinction of birds was partly caused directly by Maori for food and feathers, and partly by their introduced species of rats and dogs, as far as I can remember.

    “I don’t think this narrative holds true in general – I don’t think ANY group of people can be unconditionally trusted to do the right thing on their own (the tragedy of the commons may apply to _any_ group). I don’t think it holds true historically – it might have been “us” in many cases, mainly or partly, driving species to extinction, particularly in the locations less affected by climatic changes.”

    This is something I have wondered about, and I sort of agree. The tragedy of the commons problem surely does apply to hunter gatherers. I’m inclined to believe humans are a mixture of good and bad (for want of a better word) and it seems unlikely hunter gatherers are different. It seems likely some members of a tribe might want to take more than the environment has to give. However the evidence does suggest these people were quite good at moderating their behaviour presumably by sets of rules and knowledge passed down through the generations. They really did live sustainably in the main, although the small and stable population size might have made this relatively easy as well. And I wonder if being reliant on just a few food sources, they really had to be very careful.

    However hunter gatherers didn’t all live sustainably the case of Maori being one example so I can see there are probably other cases. And a quick google shows a lot of people think early humans wiped out various species, and a striking correlation between human expansion out of africa and exinctions of megafauna particularly apex predators. But the research killian quoted did seem to suggest extinction of megafauna in north america was entirely due to climate events with no evidence relating it to hunting as evidenced by increasing population. Your argument appears to be the global pattern suggests humans are a dominant cause, or a large cause of extinction so perhaps this played at least SOME part in the north american extinctions. If so, it does appear to be a small part at least in north america. So this does suggest early american indian populations did live at least reasonably sustainably as far as things like bison go. Mind you the populations of bison were rather large and they would have to have worked hard to completely wipe them out, and so how much of it was planned sustainability and just a large population of bison?

    For the record, I dont think hunter gatherers were primitive murderous brutes but having scanned some of the research studies some time ago its a complicated nuanced picture. Perhaps the point is some groups were peaceful and sustainable and it does gives us some hope we can emulate that although Im inclined to think we will only do it with a fairly powerful rule of law combined with growing understanding and awareness of the issues.

    I think whats changed from hunter gatherer culture is modern humans have obviously exploded in numbers, and so been even harsher on the environment as a result. Technology has fixed so many of the problems that causes, leading us to be even harsher still thinking technology will always find a solution. But there reaches a point where technology has limits, and whether the human race is smart enough to apply technology to the right things, and realise it cant solve everything.

  47. 597
    Killian says:

    AMOC is more sensitive to rates of melt than previously thought (by people who can only see numbers, that what has been rather than what is likely to be by looking at system dynamics, long-tail risks, etc.)

    https://www.pnas.org/content/118/9/e2017989118

    Here we show that increasing rates of change of ice melt can induce a collapse of the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation in a global ocean model, while no critical threshold in ice melt is crossed and slower increases to the same level of ice melt do not induce tipping. Moreover, the chaotic dynamics of the climate make such a collapse hard to predict. This shows that the safe operating space of the Earth system might be smaller than previously thought.

    https://www.msn.com/en-us/weather/topstories/a-major-ocean-current-may-be-hurtling-towards-collapse/ar-BB1dWPCc

    The AMOC is at risk of collapsing when a certain level of freshwater flow into the North Atlantic from increasing ice melt in Greenland is reached,” Johannes Lohmann, one of the authors of the study, said in an email. “These tipping points have been shown previously in climate models, where meltwater is very slowly introduced into the ocean. In reality, increases in meltwater from Greenland are accelerating and cannot be considered slow.”

    ——————————–

    Oh, no! There goes Tokyo! Go, go Godzilla… and Mothra… and King Kong… and…

    Don’t worry your little heads, though; I’m sure we still have the whole freaking century like so many seem to think… right? I mean carbon neutral by 2050 and…. no timeline for actual safe levels back under 300? In fact, sub-300 not even on the agenda…

    https://www.pnas.org/content/118/9/e2008478118

    Human-caused environmental changes can materialize very rapidly, or “abruptly,” typically at rates much faster than sustained natural changes of the past (9). Such changes are already ongoing and documented for ocean warming, for acidification, and, to a certain degree, also for deoxygenation (e.g., refs. 10⇓⇓⇓–14). Superimposed on fast changes in these ocean state variables are extreme events, such as heat waves, coastal hypoxia, and ocean acidification events linked, for example, to strong upwelling episodes. Since these developments are likely to aggravate over this century, they are important, as are the extraordinary abrupt singular events (e.g., refs. 2 and 15). Thus, our aim is to demonstrate that there are a number of high-probability high-impact tipping points in the ocean’s physical, chemical, and biological systems.

    Wow! Who’d’a thunk all this stuff might be dangerous in time frames shorter than previously believed?! Nobody could have guessed that!

    Hi. Just call me Mr. Nobody. I have a few nobody friends, too… But, hey, just ignore us. We’ll go away eventually… along with you and everything else.

  48. 598
    Killian says:

    589 Piotr says:
    23 Feb 2021 at 11:52 AM

    Re Nigelj (581) – yes, this what I have meant by bringing up islands

    Wrangel mammoths went extinct long before any evidence of human presence on the island.

    passenger pigeon

    Killed with GUNS, genius, not bows and arrows or being run over cliffs. It would have been absolutely impossible for humans to have extenguished the birds in NA.

    The argument “ it’s not us“

    Is a lie. Nobody said it on these boards.

    it’s the climate change – not only is NOT critical to conveying the urgency of the climate change point

    That climate can cause extinctions is absolutely critical as some still do not believe it and because if *natural* climate change can drive extinctions then anthropogenically-turbocharged climate change moving 1k x faster certainly can – even without all the other ecosystem destruction, hunting, etc. Add it all together, and it makes it clear the situation is more dire than most think.

    Just look at the people on this forum still advocating for nothing more than net zero by 2050 – and virtually no drops in consumption. Too many people are still not understanding the dynamics at play.

    but could be used to weaken the protection of the fauna. In Canada, courts seem to side with native populations on their right to hunt and fish outside of the quota and protective seasons applying to others.

    That has nothing to do with your argument. The current low level of flora and fauna has nothing to do with indigenous activities, and, in fact, the indigenous activities, typically being regenerative, will improve the ecosystem in ways you do not understand. Limits imposed by idiot governments are meaningless, anyway. In most cases, we should allow *only* the indigenous to hunt or fish.

    The legal justification that this a part of the traditions that have not given up when signing the treaties. The concerns of what it will do to the conservation are waved off with the argument that the ancestors have lived in a harmony with nature, took only what’s needed, and didn’t drive any species into extinction. The “ it’s not us!” argument plays really well into that narrative.

    Because it sbould. It’s accurate. The problem is not indigenous catch, it’s non-indigenous catch and ecosystem destruction.

    I don’t think this narrative holds true in general – I don’t think ANY group of people can be unconditionally trusted to do the right thing on their own

    This is unadulterated ignorance, if not racism, given it’s a fact that groups DO live within the means of their environments.

    (the tragedy of the commons may apply to _any_ group)

    You can’t show me a single case of an ecosystem ruined by an indigenous group living in regenerative ways. Only those groups that turned to mass agriculture, mass cities, monumental architecture, etc., ruined their environments.

    I don’t think it holds true historically – it might have been “us” in many cases,
    mainly or partly, driving species to extinction, particularly in the locations less affected by climatic changes.

    Because you think it, it must be true though you offer zero evidence to contradict the new paper.

    And most importantly, I don’t think you can extrapolate the past onto the present

    Straw Man. Nobody did.

    our ability to drive species into extinction with spears and arrows is not the same when we replaced them with high-powered rifles

    How is this a relevant point? The paper was about the YD extinctions and it made no attempt to tie those extinctions to present-day extinctions.

    And when we hunt the species that may be already pushed to the wall by all the non-hunting human impacts, including human-made climate change.

    You are lazily and foolishly arguing with yourself. It is based on a massive Straw Man: The YD extinctions tell us something about today’s extinctions. But nobody made that claim. It is no secret current extinctions are anthropogenic both directly (over-hunting/fishing, e.g.) and indirectly (climate change, e.g.) nor that the very complex forces at play are certainly making this worse: I have said for years there is little or no hysteresis in the climate system because we have degraded all ecosystems on the planet simultaneously.

    But you clearly have issues with maintaining the full context of issues and analyses made about them… as well as with truthfulness.

  49. 599
    Killian says:

    https://www.yahoo.com/finance/news/lithium-prices-soar-tesla-apple-000000850.html

    According to experts’ projections, demand for electric vehicles should rise at a 21.1% Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) until 2026.

    The extraordinary demand that is forecast for EVs over the next five years has now begun to trigger a massive disruption in the global energy markets.

    No problem! It’s not like these elements are rare or anything….

  50. 600

    #585, 591–

    Yeah, the bit about only testing ex post facto rang alarm bells for me, too.

    (I was investigating, not advocating, just to be clear–I’d never heard of NORI, or Trey Hill, before this topic came up here.)

    But, hey, who wants to go in on a couple hundred acres and get paid for *maybe* sequestering carbon?

    A good, if rhetorical, question. But just maybe Trey Hill really means it when he writes:

    With climate resilient farming, my fields are better able to thrive in severe weather, my soils are richer and more productive, and I’m bettering the environment. But there are other, more personal benefits. By being open to change and adaptation—observing and taking my cues from nature—I’m getting back to the roots of farming. Getting the shovel out and seeing the earthworms thrive in my living fields has reawakened a sense of not just how but why we farm. It’s something my father knew, but one that my generation of farmers has been disconnected from in our modern, fully-mechanized farming environment.

    I’m only now learning about the natural ecosystem on my own farm, but I’m not alone. Many farmers of my generation have lost touch with their land sense. But it isn’t too late to reconnect. By introducing cover crops and flowers, I’ve not just improved my farm, I’ve reinvigorated my passion for farming. As humans, we have farmed for millennia—motivated not just by the need for food but by the process of growing it, and the reward of watching Mother Nature grow what we’ve planted. It’s not just about hopping on a tractor to see how many acres we can get done in a day. For me, climate resilient farming is about reconnecting with the fundamental enjoyment of watching the bees and the birds and feeling the soil.

    I’m a musician–you know, the tribe that proverbially will pop a $5000 instrument in a $1000 car and drive 500 miles to make $100. So just possibly my readiness to accept the reality of non-financial motivations is higher than typical. But farmers–or some of them–might just be up there with musicians in that regard. And there is the ‘resilient, richer and more productive’ piece.