Monday, September 28, 2009

Climatology: The Black Art

Climate is what we expect; weather is what we get. ~ Mark Twain

Okay, class, it's time once again to sum up the current foolishness about the global warming situation.

This article says we can fix everything by building ships that create clouds, which will be a whole lot cheaper than sending sun shades into space (I'm not making that up).

If you don't like the boat thing, there's a genius that wants to re-forest the Sahara. Forget that not too many months ago, global warming enthusiasts were warning against planting trees because they would increase the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Instead, try to imagine the number of ways the climate of the planet might be completely screwed up Hold that thought.

Here we are told it's the sun that is driving out climate. In fact, thanks to an incredibly quiet sun cycle, there are those suggesting we may be looking a new Maunder Minimum, which was a period during the middle ages that became known as the Little Ice Age.

Some scientists seem to think we're in for a spell of global cooling. Oopsie. And that arctic ice melt-off? Postponed for the next 20 or 30 years.

The U.N. has pushed arctic melting out another 10 years, but goes on to say that cutting US CO2 emissions by 80% won't help. Well, that's a fine kettle of fish.

For our final bit of humor, we find the noted climatologists at Clemson decided that we have
more hurricanes but they're not as severe (despite having heard the "more and meaner" drumbeat for years now). However, the problem is that they just have their geography messed up; it's Japan that's getting the stronger storms.

And I didn't even bring up the cosmic ray nonsense.

The simple fact is that no one knows what the climate is going to do. Even if they had a reasonable forecast of the climate, they wouldn't know what to do to change the future climate without creating a situation that's far, far worse.

The bottom line is that no one knows how the climate works. That's nothing to be ashamed of, because we don't even know all that factors that make the climate do what it does. We've had warm periods on the planet that are beyond even the wildest predictions of global warming fanatics. In fact, for much of the planet's history, there hasn't even been an arctic icecap during the summer. Yet during those times, like the Cretaceous, there wasn't a single factory or Hummer in sight.

What's frightening is people talking about geo-engineering the Earth. If we don't know how the climate works, how can we reliably judge how to fix it? The potential for creating totally unpredictable consequences is so high as to be nearly a sure thing. Look back at those stories and note the various disagreements.

Two years ago, I wrote about the chinks in the CO2 fortress. The reaction of the global warming guys, who had the upper hand with governments and the media at the time, is to simply ostracize those who disagree with them (same sort of thing happens with physicists who thing string theory is bunk, but that's another article). It's time for some serious evaluation of data.

It's also time to recognize the role of the sun, the state of the Earth's magnetic field (which is moving and may flip polarity, as it has done many times in the past) and even cosmic rays on our weather. Global warming nuts simply pretend that data doesn't exist or warp it to fit their own preconceptions. And, in global warming, preconceptions is the name of the game.

In the 1980's, the prevailing climatological thinking was that we were heading for a new ice age. The hope was that the additional CO2 in the air would mitigate the effects. I am willing to be those guys had some terrific data, too.

We don't need any cockamamie schemes for changing the climate. We need to improve our predictive abilities, quit relying on computer models that can't predict the motion of a tropical storm more than 15 minutes in advance, and quit using scare tactics to get hold of government grants.

If, in fact, global warming is real, we aren't going to be able to change it. Sure, it's a good idea to cut down CO2 emissions, if only because the reason they exist is because we need to quit using inefficient energy generation methods. We should get rid of fuel-guzzling vehicles, because they don't make sense in any way, shape or form when there are alternative methods of getting from one place to another.

Oh, and we should be careful about those alternative propulsion methods. People are hyping hydrogen-powered vehicles because their only emission is water. Well, if those cars become the standard, we'll be putting massive amounts of water vapor into the air.

Care to speculate on what that might do to the climate?

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