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Unforced Variations: May 2021

Filed under: — group @ 1 May 2021

This month’s open thread for climate science topics.

163 Responses to “Unforced Variations: May 2021”

  1. 151
    Axel says:

    Mike #128
    “ Daily CO2
    May. 24, 2021 = 417.82 ppm
    May. 24, 2020 = 417.69 ppm”

    An increase of 0.13 ppm in one year, ie an increase of 13 ppm in 100 years. When we went from ice age to interglacial, the increase was 1 ppm in 100 years. This was a colossal rapid increase. So even this small increase from 2020 to 2021 (which, unfortunately, is only a coincidence in the midst of our nightmarish gigantic annual increases) is far too great.

  2. 152
    MA Rodger says:

    Jim Hunt @127,
    Concerning the wobbles in Barents Sea Ice Area you graph, the big wobble through Winter/Spring 2021 is quite well matched by the big wobble through Winter/Spring 2013 which also kicks-off at a minimum SIA and achieves a maximum SIA through the period. I would thus reckon the 8 years of data isn’t enough to show trends in such wobbles, or for that matter in averaged levels of Barents SIA through the period (or parts thereof). Perhaps the NSIDC 1979-to-date in the link you provided @73 (which did show signs of wobbles) may be worth a shufti.

  3. 153
    MA Rodger says:

    mike @128,
    The MLO CO2 data has been showing a curious wobble since the start of March, curious more in its regularity than anything else. The five peaks and five dips so-far are quite obvious in the ESRL Interactive graphic with a potential sixth peak now in the making. Given the height of these wobbles peak-to-peak run to 2ppm and more, I’m surprised there haven’t been more negative year-on-year daily CO2 rises.
    The 2020 CO2 levels started dropping strongly from 3rd June so with 2021 perhaps peaking in a sixth 2-week-long wobble, that one negative year-on-year daily CO2 rise may be the only one we see.

  4. 154
    David B. Benson says:

    It seems that the Sahara had both a summer and a winter monsoon:
    Of course both failed, resulting in the current desert and driving people into the Nile River Valley, causing the rise of so-called civilization there.

    The current interest is understanding that not just Walker circulation was at play.

  5. 155
    Killian says:

    Interesting that peak daily atmospheric CO2 came in APRIL this year: 420.29, April 30. It typically comes in the middle/end of May; serious season shifting.


  6. 156
  7. 157

    Killian, #148–

    Sorry you took my sincere thank you as somehow “patronizing.” You can respond or not to the substance of the post or not, as you please. I don’t much care.

  8. 158
    zebra says:

    S.B. Ripman #150,

    Ah, Persimmon Vinegar.

    Yeah, that’s the ticket… if you can just sell enough Persimmon Vinegar, you can easily solve world hunger, despite advancing climate change in places where agriculture is already struggling and displacing the existing farmers.

    The fact that there is a small market for upscale products that meet some “values based buying” criterion in no way affects the real-world market for cheap calories at a scale that really matters. And getting feel-good contributions in no way compares to the scale of subsidies that result from the political control exercised by the agro-industrial complex.

    So what’s the plan? I was just reading about water wars out there, with that Bundy guy and his people stocking up on guns.

    Is the plan to have those people take a little vacation at one of the elite education facilities being set up about regenerative agriculture? I’m sure things would settle down then.

  9. 159
    Killian says:

    146 nigelj says:
    31 May 2021 at 2:53 AM

    Regarding the circular economy. I never said degrowth and simplification people ‘don’t’ talk about the circular economy. And yes you have referred to it before. I said that Adam Lea doesn’t really understand what ‘you’ mean by simplification.

    No, you said my “plan.” You are moving the goalposts. Per usual.

    Because your version of the circular economy modifies the conventional theory of the circular economy (by your own words directly above)

    I do not have a version of a circular economy. At all.

    and your version of simplification includes so many other things Adam Lea never mentioned in his original statement.

    Simplification will be, as all sustainable. i.e. regenerative, design is, location-dependent. He gets that. You do not. He gets the characterisitics, I’m sure, of a sustainable society/economy, you do not, as the post I am responding to shows.

    You cannot define simplification as “the circular economy”

    I didn’t. What’s wrong with your head?

    …it includes multiple other elements as I listed @114.

    Your 114 was supposedly stating what my “plan” was, not what a ciruclar economy, or even sustainability, is.

    You rose to your level of incompetence the moment you started posting on these fora.

    Perhaps I should have said Adam Lea doesnt “fully undertand” what you mean by simplification, if that makes people happier.

    Slightly better, but I think he does bc doing so doesn’t not require understanding the specifics – something I am certain you will never grasp. The real question here is, WTF has that got to do with you other than your narcissistic need to literally comment on every post and/or exchange and/or topic raised, no matter how little you have to offer or how poorly you understand it?

    I certainly “get it” (the circular economy and simplification) because I said previously at 114 that the “circular economy is a useful concept”

    That’s a perfect self-contradiction. You literally just proved you do not understand it at all.

    Enough…. I’m not reading the rest of this incompetent crap.

  10. 160
    Killian says:

    138 nigelj says:
    29 May 2021 at 6:32 PM

    Killian @123 says I don’t know his simplification plan.

    You don’t.

    That’s a strange thing to say because I’ve read his explanations several times

    And yet…

    and he knows this

    I know you should have, and that I have posted about it enough for you to have the gist, yet…

    and I listed the main features of his plan @114

    No, you did not. You think you did.

    1)enhanced use of biomass for energy and building

    This is not a feature of “my plan,” it is one way to meet needs, but such decisions are all location-dependent. It is a feature of regenerative systems, not “my plan.”

    2)going right back to traditional farming or using regenerative agriculture in such a stringent and uncompromising way

    Stringent and uncompromising? This is barking words. Again, ALL design is location-dependent, not something I can impose on anyone. There is nothing “stringent or uncompromising” about producing food regeneratively. It’s stupid *not* to as the alternative is destructive. It’s not about laws, it’s about wisdom.

    3)going back to horse and cart

    Not a feature in any way. A feature is something stated as necessary to be done. Again, all design is location-dependent. That is, at best, an example, not a feature.

    walking and cycling apart from long distance travel,

    See comments above. I think Venice, Italy, might want to keep their boats, no? Nah… let’s make them pave it all over so they can walk and cycle everywhere.

    4)scaling back use of modern technology apart from just a few essentials

    Has nothing to do with modern or not, technology or not, and has everything to do with sustainable or not. Show me a sustainable solar panel and sustainable manufacturing process and sustainable shipping, i.e. sustainable solar panels, and I’m all for it.

    So the “feature” is using only sustainable systems for anything that can’t be recycled or reused unless it is absolutely necessary to use anything unsustainably – understanding there will be a transition period from completely unsustainable (now) to 100% sustainable rather than an instantaneous stoppage of all that is unsustainable – but this is obvious.

    5) getting rid of all private ownership, apart from very personal possessions like clothing

    Yes, but the term you should use here rather than the negative framing you use is to create nested Commons of various scales.

    6) getting rid of hierarchies in organisations, groups, management etc.

    See previous. This is a creative process, not destructive. We build egalitarian decision-making systems; there is no need to tear down what is as it will fall under its own weight as people opt to do regenerative rather than destructive.

    There are very important things you left out. Intentionally? Incompetently?

  11. 161
    Richard Caldwell says:

    Adam Lea,

    Talk about fifteen minutes of Fame! Did you ever think that what you knew or understood back whenever would be THE hot topic?

  12. 162
    nigelj says:

    Killian @147, I do not agree that the risks from climate change and other environmental problems should be solved with massive and rapid reductions in levels of consumption of minerals and energy. This is because of multiple factors as follows. Huge and rapid reductions in use of materials and energy drains demand from the economy and would cause a huge economic depression. Look at history when demand contracts sharply. There is no sign of big changes in consumption happening with people even although they already KNOW how serious the climate problem is so its not clear why that would change.

    In addition humans tend to respond much more strongly to immediate problems rather than longer term threats like climate change. This is basic human psychology. Humans are materialistic. Simple observation. There are known technical solutions to problems of climate change, toxic waste and pollution etc, and resource scarcity could be mitigated with moderate, plausible reductions in consumption, smaller population, smaller homes, passive solar homes, organic farming and other sensible things. What more ‘analysis’ to you or anyone else really need? Its clear enough to me.

  13. 163
    Piotr says:


    DBBenson (145): “ the next descent to a stade, i.e., an “ice age” is more like 100,000 years”. Except BIgel wasn’t saying about the length of the descent
    but about it’s START. Which was scheduled BEGINNING “in the next 10,000 yrs”.

    DBB: Read “The Long Thaw” by David Archer Better still check it for yourself. e.g. at:

    But this next descent has already been already postponed, if not cancelled altogether – given the CO2 levels in the air and ocean, and the amount of already heat stored in the ocean, and so much of the ice albedo missing. So the next chance of geoengineering ourselves out of an ice age is probably 100,000 yrs, at the earliest.

    Nigel (143) its likely global population will be much smaller in size, so it could migrate to warmer regions in the southern hemisphere.

    it’s hard enough to predict the human population 100 years from now. 100,000 yrs from now. Then again would they have any science and a civilization to extract the
    fossil fuels (since all the easy places have been already cleaned out). And would they even know that they have to do geoengineering – that is – would they know that the Winter is coming ?