Lampang wrote:Unfortunately higher concentrations of atmospheric CO2 mean higher temperature and pretty much all the studies show that heat stress will reduce crop yields. In addition to this, disruption to precipitation caused by climate change will also further reduce crop yields. You're the one looking forward to the premature deaths of billions, I'm afraid. And, as an aside, I think you meant "from 280ppm to the present level". 350ppm is level which many people believe is the maximum beyond which the climate system will become in the long term unsuitable for human life. We're currently at around 390ppm (though when you take into account the forcing for other greenhouse gases - NOX, CH4, CFCs, HCFCs, etc - we're a lot higher still.)
No, I am not looking forward to any premature deaths. I want to do everything I can to keep more people alive. I fully believe the larger population we have, the more geniuses, scientists and maybe even Arahants we will have as well. We need those people, and a lot of them to help fix our problems.
CO2 has been much higher in the past, and at times it has been much warmer in the past without the earth turning into a massive desert. My grandparents were farmers, and I've spent a lot of time with plants. I know a lot about heat stress, and I don't buy the argument that somehow the planet will rapidly heat to the point of making crops fail or making plants not grow.
* During the Jurassic Period (200 mya), average CO2 concentrations were about 1800 ppm or about 4.7 times higher than today.
* The highest concentrations of CO2 during all of the Paleozoic Era occurred during the Cambrian Period, nearly 7000 ppm -- about 18 times higher than today.
* The Carboniferous Period and the Ordovician Period were the only geological periods during the Paleozoic Era when global temperatures were as low as they are today.
* To the consternation of global warming proponents, the Late Ordovician Period was also an Ice Age while at the same time CO2 concentrations then were nearly 12 times higher than today -- 4400 ppm.
Also, the argument that a warmer climate somehow is bad is wrong. A warmer climate would be great, it would increase biodiversity and make more life possible. Warmer temps should causes more evaporation from the oceans, which means more rainfall, not less. The idea that a rise in temperate will make the earth unsuitable for humans is wrong. Warmer temps would open up vast tracts of land in northern Canada and Russian for agriculture and human habitation.
Many of the other greenhouse gasses are very minor trace gasses. They are present in such tiny amounts as to have nearly no impact on climate.
Lampang wrote:That's a criticism of the forecasts for growth in emissions, not of ACC. Actually, as it's turned out, we're on the worst of the IPCC forecasts for increases in emissions, so I'm not sure how much point there was in posting the paper anyway. But, that said, it's typical of denialists to conflate questions about the mechanics or consequences of climate change with questions about climate change itself. The move from 'we don't know everything' (which is true) to 'we know nothing' (which is false) is very, very common. Another example, further down the page is a set of papers on deaths related to climate change. The same false reasoning seems to be at play: questioning the number of deaths which is forecast as a consequence of climate is not the same as questioning the reality of climate change. The fact that this move is so common amongst denialists is revealing. Denialists, on the whole, have no interest in establishing the truth; their interest is exclusively focused on establishing - by any means necessary - that ACC is wrong.
Also, I see that one of the articles is by Nigel Lawson. I presume this is the Nigel Lawson who is the former Tory Chancellor of the Exchequer and notorious free-market ideologue and denialist - and a man with precisely zero expertise on climate change. And I'd also wonder how much expertise the editorial board of New Concepts in Global Tectonics Newsletter bring to the complex issues of climate change.
Really, there's a Himalaya of evidence in favour of ACC and against this the denialists have a few grains of sand. I don't know why people are so adamant that black is white, but then the "Intelligent Design" people similarly hold out in the face of absolutely convincing evidence that they're wholly wrong. What seems shocking is that even if we take the denialists "arguments" at face value, it still makes no sense to hang on to an economic system based on digging stuff out of the ground and burning it. Extraction of petrol, gas, and coal is all going to peak and then go into decline (if, in the case of petrol, it hasn't already). The world is going to have to give up the carbon economy, whether it likes it or not (and, actually, it's going to have to give up an economic system based on infinite growth) so why not do it now? Even if ACC is completely wrong - and it's not - why not take the opportunity to rid ourselves of an economic system which is - by it's very nature - guaranteed to collapse and which - as we all know - is making us miserable? A life - enjoyed by the masses of the West and elites in the global South - based on the endlessly increasing consumption of things we don't want or need, funded through work we don't enjoy is crazy.
I have hesitated to respond to messages of yours because of the language you used. I feel that 'denalist' is a derogatory term that likens to holocaust deniers. I do not appreciate being called a denier just because I am skeptical. I would be glad to talk to you and debate with you in a civil manner, but I just do not wish to be insulted as a denier, flat-earther, etc.
You mention economics. As a small business owner, I am a fan of free markets and in particular the Austrian school of economic thought. I would like to say that I do not think we should take actions that damage our economy until we have a better system to replace it. I fear that taking rash actions now based on questionable science would threaten to plunge many people in poverty and greater suffering. We have many years of fossil fuels left, and imho we should use that time skillfully to develop new energy sources.
I am well aware that the current capitalist system is rife with problems, but it's the best system we have come up with to date. It's also not a static and unchanging system, and given time I hope it will adapt to the new challenges we face and overcome them. I don't want to turn this into an economic debate, because it will end up getting even more political than it already is, and I dislike politics.