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Comment Re:Less water (Score 1) 696

It will be a problem in many areas because the elevation profiles are very nearly flat in many areas, such as Bangladesh and much of Oceania. The problem with the climate models is the assumption that 3-4 degrees C is what we are going to get by 2100. Newer data suggest that the sensitivity is much higher because the models do not account for the highly non-linear response to the loss of Arctic ice. Thus what may be 1-2 meters of sea level rise in 100-200 years, we may be looking at closer to 3-8 m or possibly higher in some places. Because the bulk of human population is in coastal areas, that is a huge number of people and an incredible amount of infrastructure that will have to be moved, abandoned, or rebuilt, all of which is likely to require tremendous amounts of new CO2 to accomplish.

Comment Re:350ppm (Score 1) 696

What people like these don't realize is that one Solydra failure here and we stop investing in solar technology. In the meantime China ramps up its production to double our own, is more than happy to subsidize 10 firrms the size of Solydra for every success and is rapidly taking over the lead in solar investments and technology. This year the Chinese spent twice what we spent on solar power. Next year they will double that again and are planning an increase of 5 times next years output the following year.

In the meantime, Tea Partiers here are tyring to take food out of the mouths of old women and children to avoid paying a dollar more in tax, much less invest in anything as a nation that might allow us to even stay competitive. We are literally walking away from technological leadership so essential to addressing global warming that its hard to imagine how we are going to survive as a nation, much less compete in such an every warming world, particularly one in which foreign markets will soon impose carbon tariffs on our products.

Comment Re:350ppm (Score 1) 696

Don't worry about Goldman Sachs. It seems the Chinese have set up their own carbon trading market and will probably eventually start using it as muscle in trade talks. Why let any American companies get in on the action, when we can turn the entire market over to the Chinese like we have done with manufacturing and increasingly with solar production?

Comment Re:350ppm (Score 1) 696

"400 is just a number."

Your right. Its just like the speed of that locomotive that is about 100 feet down the tracks bearing down on your vehicle parked on the tracks with the doors locked and the windows rolled up, while you try to figure out where you put your keys. Of course,when that number reaches a certain threshold, its just a matter of "emotional investment" so why bother to start the car?

Comment Re:Try reading the article (Score 1) 696

The problem with hoping that new areas will be available to rearrange the deck chairs on the Titanic is that it assumes that the location where you put the chair will be as hospitable as the last. For organisms that have extremely specific biological requirements and that evolved essentially within narrow habitats over the course of tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands, and millions of years, the probability of that happening rapidly approaches zero for all but the already most widely ranging species. Often, just getting to the new favorable site should there be one, will be next to impossible given the organisms dispersal capacity. Also keep in mind that seeds and larvae may themselves have very special requirements that make it extremely difficult for them to make it, even when conditions are optimum, much less highly dynamic and erratic.

Comment Re:Try reading the article (Score 1) 696

You seem to have the erroneous idea that because there is a lot of land at high latitude its going to be suitable for growing plants, when things begin to warm up. As I posted above this is sort of Simple Simon thinking with respect to the bilogy of the organisms involved. There are many, many reasons why it will be difficult to grow corn on Baffin Island in 2100 even if the ground isn't covered by ice.

Comment Re:350ppm (Score 1) 696

Over time the capture of carbon in limestone removes it from the atmosphere. However, the rate is miniscule and the processes take hundreds of thousands and millions of years to effect. Consequently, we can't expect to rely on these natural processes to remove carbon dioxide for us. We will probably have to rapidly cut back on fossil fuel use to close to zero use to survive as a species as we move into the next couple of hundred years.

Comment Re:in 50 years how does it adapt? (Score 1) 696

This kind of mindless simplicity won't go too far as global warming is far more likely to produce more violent extreme weather, not some for of Goldilocks like conditions where everything is "just right".

People who think this way only really show a remarkable lack of knowledge about biology and biological systems.

Comment Re:in 50 years how does it adapt? (Score 1) 696

"There is no place on Earth that we know of: not the fiercest desert, not the deepest depths of the Mariana Trench, not in the deepest borehole ever made, nor even in the insanely radioactive core of active boiling water reactors - where life does not thrive."

Sure bacteria and microorganisms will make it in very harsh environments, some can live in near boiling mud pots or in Atacama desert sands, where it hasn't rained in 100 years. However, its not going to be the same species of vertebrate organisms that we tend to think of. So knowledge of this fact doesn't exactly get us out of the predicament we are in.

If higher life forms are to be saved several things must be accomplished within the next 50-100 years.

First you have to educate the deniers and those who can't be educated probably have to be locked away in a fashion where they can do less harm or perhaps sent to a moon base, where they can either better appreciate Earth or feel free to ravage the lunar atmosphere to their hearts content.

We then need to move toward massive solar energy projects, as well as wind, hydrothermal and tidal. Some shift through natural gas and nuclear are probably unavoidable from oil and coal will probably be unavoidable, but we will need to move away from all fossil fuels quickly, except perhaps for tasks that can not yet be accomplished otherwise and as necessary for emergency situations. Fossil fuels will need to be banned for all other purposes. This will require a total transformation of cities and transportation of all kinds.

It will be essential to figure out ways to get people and nations to work together collectively rather than individually so that maximum results can be achieved quickly with minimal waste and contention for resources. That may be the biggest hurdle along with the unavoidable displacement and disruption that is now almost certain to be massive.

Comment Re: 350ppm (Score 1) 696

Actually it is already happening. Its just that we tend to take so many things for granted we don't notice the small, almost imperceptible changes until the trends are very far along. Take a look at all the new tropical diseases that are now found in the US in the past 10-15 years. Until you get one, who pays attention. Generally speaking, people's knowledge of biology is incredibly low. Even for people who have studied biology their entire lives and have advanced degrees in the subject the level of knowledge is still pretty low. Life is complicated.

Comment Re:350ppm (Score 5, Insightful) 696

"Life adapts. That's what it does."

Actually the fossil record suggests otherwise, if the amount of change is too abrupt. In that case most higher life forms go extinct because they are too dependent upon specific lower forms of life that often can not adapt. Most organisms have very specific environmental requirements. Go outside of those physiological limits and they die. Humans aren't much different in many respects. We do a lot of things, but seldom do we really get too far out of our physiological comfort zone. A world that in 80-100 years has temperatures of 130-140 degrees F in the shade for weeks on end will be a whole experience.

Keep in mind that this time its totally different, because of the rate at which CO2 is rising. Its going up more than 26 times faster than during the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal maximum, which changed the forests of what is now northern Wyoming from redwoods to palm trees in a couple of thousand years. It will be hard to imagine many organisms surviving that kind of change over the course of a few hundred, much less most of their pollinators.

"Do you think Canadians and Russians live in fear of global warming?"

They should. The vast bulk of the warming that will be seen is occurring in the Arctic and generally speaking even Russians and Canadians need to eat. With food crops under threat, they may well find themselves stressed as well. Some 56,000 Russians died in the heat wave in 2010. Some 40,000-50,000 Europeans died from a similar heat wave in 2003. If the Lake El’gygytgyn results are a direct indication that the global climate sensitivity is 8 degrees Celsius which it appears to, rather than what people have been indirectly inferring and using in their climate models, then its pretty clear that we can expect many more to die as we now move into the Arctic amplification phase of global warming.

As for the high latitude North providing more arable land, don't count on it for several reasons. 1) Arctic soils are very poor, 2) few commercial plants can tolerate the long winters so most crops that require more than one year to produce, such as fruit trees won't be among them, 3) just because the Arctic is warming doesn't mean that it may not yet see many days with freezing temperatures, so most plants adapted to more southern latitudes simply won't be able to adapt to growing conditions which are interrupted by severe frost in an unpredictable way, 4) it may be almost impossible to take pollinators with them given the different wind and percipitation/abruptly changing temperature regimes. Keep in mind many plants used for human consumption, such as corn, rice, coffee are tropical or tropical highland species, 5) many others such as wheat are highly susceptible to rusts and fungi and will likely fare poorly as there is too much moisture in the atmosphere such as in early spring, and 6) simply because you have high latitude does not mean that abundant, year around sources of freshwater will be uniformly available throughout the entire landscape.

Obviously, a lot depends on how fast the change.

Comment Re:350ppm (Score 1) 696

Nobody has those kinds of energy resources. Even in Dubai where they have an abundance of hydrocarbons, their islands don't amount to much more than a few meters of dredged sand in relatively restricted areas. Have you attempted to work out the energy requirements for moving such masses of sand and rock? Just think how expensive it would be just to get it from the sea to the mountains, much less on the barge in the first place? Do you have any idea how much CO2 you would generate in the process raising sea levels even further.

It seems your ideas are not very well thought out. You might have figured that out had to taken even a moment to reflect on your silly idea. Take a few more bong hits and get back to us.

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