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You are currently viewing archive for November 2007
Posted By Bakari

I am a liberal. I am an environmentalist. I commute by bicycle to my job advocating the bicycle as a means of everyday transportation. I run my work truck on modified vegetable oil at significant extra cost compared to petroleum diesel. I have a reasonably strong understanding of the sciences, including an associates in biology and earth science (which encompasses, among other things, geology and ecology)
I don't believe in global warming.

I should clarify; I don't not believe in the same way I don't believe in "God".
I acknowledge that the world is almost certainly getting warmer, and there is a good chance that humans have had something to do with it. It is certainly possible.

Graph of temperature of planet earth over time

Note that the time scale is a log.


The graph is a log in order to more easily see the range over different time scales. Each section exists on its own with a linear scale, I just choose that one because I think it allows for a better perspective.

The graph that is used by people who want to convince people of human caused climate change is invariably that of the last 1000 years. 1000 years, on the scale of global processes, is nothing. It is equivalent to looking at specie change or continent movement over the past 1000 years which would "prove" evolution and plate tectonics are myth.

However, the question is not "is the Earth getting warmer". That is measurable. The questions are: 1 "is there a net positive or a net negative feedback mechanism?" (in other words, will it continue out of control or will it naturally stabilize); and 2 "is it our fault?"

Looking at the larger scale, from the time the earths climate settled into a reasonably stable pattern, there has been a periodic cycle, and we are not outside of the range of normal. From the fact that there have been at least 5 similar cycles so far, there is a strong indication that some negative feedback mechanism is at play which serves to keep temperature extremes in check.


This is not to say that the consequences of a temperature increase (like the ones which have in fact occurred, naturally) are not catastrophic. It has been estimated that at least one of those past times of warming contributed to the extinction of up to 90% of all sea life, and 50-70% of land life.  However, humans and our technology weren't around to cause it.


I have yet to see any compelling evidence that the rate of change is outside the normal range - we simply have no way to precisely measure the change over very small intervals of something that happened billions of years before we existed. Nor is a rapid rate automatically indicative of a ever-increasing one. If there is a net negative feedback mechanism (and the historical global temperatures cyclic nature is a strong indicator that there is) it may simply kick in sooner if the rate of change is higher.

The historical geologic data suggests that it is temperature which affects CO2 levels, not the other way around.

I have heard many times now environmentalists, journalists, and politicians say something along the lines of "there is a scientific consensus" or "the facts are in, the question is what do we do about it" or some equivalent.
There isn't, and they aren't.

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Posted By Bakari

It isn't about strength to weight ratio.

Don't let your natural estrogen to testosterone ratio deter you. (embedding disabled)

It is a matter of will.

(Well, that, and lots and lots of practice)

The term is "traceuse" (French) and I think we need more of them.
After all, consider ice skating, swing dancing, gymnastics, and track & field. Plenty of our gentler and more attractive gender in those sports. Parkour is really no more than track plus gymnastics applied to a real world setting.

Speaking of which, these two show how these things can be very practical and useful skills to be comfortable with in real world situations. You never know when something like the following may happen to you!...