Global Warming, this is new measurable facts

On the face of it, it wasn’t anything to shout about — just more stats in a world drowning in numbers. These happen to have been put out by the U.S. Department of Energy and they reflected, as an Associated Press headline put it, the “biggest jump ever seen in global warming gases.” In other words, in 2010, humanity (with a special bow to China, the United States, and onrushing India) managed to pump more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere than at any time since the industrial revolution began — 564 million more tons than in 2009, which represents an increase of 6%.

According to AP’s Seth Borenstein, that’s “higher than the worst case scenario outlined by climate experts just four years ago.” He’s talking about the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, or IPCC, which is, if anything, considered “conservative” in its projections of future catastrophe by many climate scientists. Put another way, we’re talking more greenhouse gases than have entered the Earth’s atmosphere in tens of millions of years.

Check it out – it has lots of references and much more info on TomDispatch

7 Responses

  1. The world is awash in fossil fuels, we have more oil, coal and natural gas now that ever before. And we’re finding more and more every week. That means cheap fuel in the future and it means carbon emissions are about to jump so much it will make 2010 look like a tiny blip. Wahoo!

    You can drive your bony electric car if you want but I love my huge safe gas guzzling SUV.


    • The interesting thing about facts is that whatever we believe doesn’t change them. That’s why we call them facts. Since this is a pretty important matter, I would think you would at least want to investigate whether or not your opinion lines up with the facts.

  2. So Klem, you’re happy about the people of the Maldives having to evacuate their country because of your CO2 warming the planet and raising the sea level? Happy about the tropical rain forests dying out from drought later this century, as the temperature rises several degrees? (Just as a couple of examples.)

    • It’s like the Singer Sewing Machine repairman said to the housewife, “Wishing doesn’t make it sew.” I thought about answering Klem with that quote, but I wasn’t sure that everyone reading my answer would know the difference betwen so and sew, or even know about Singer sewing machines in this day and age, and my other similar quote might not have passed the family reader censor, given the number of people who are suffering while he plays like he understands what he believes.

  3. “So Klem, you’re happy about the people of the Maldives having to evacuate their country because of your CO2 warming the planet and raising the sea level?”

    Ok kiddies, lets look at atolls. Acccording to Wikipedia “The Maldives consists of approximately 1,190 coral islands grouped in a double chain of 26 atolls,”

    “In 1842 Darwin explained the creation of coral atolls…He reasoned that a fringing coral reef surrounding a volcanic island in the tropical sea will grow upwards as the island subsides (sinks),…The fringing reef becomes a barrier reef for the reason that the outer part of the reef maintains itself near sea level through biotic growth,…at this point, the island has become an atoll.”

    In other words, the Maldives are a series of atolls, which maintain themselves at sea level through growth of the coral reef. As the sea rises as it has over the last 20k years, the atoll coral reef grows and rises with it.

    In other words, the Maldives will maintain themseves at sea level through coral growth, as they always have.

    What, did you honestly think it was a complete fluke that the 1000 Maldive islands were all at sea level?

    Go back to high school science class, or better yet, go back to Russia.


  4. Hey Klem, is your face red. You have obviously no background in biology and the commentator you were talking with is a high-level professor of biology 🙂

    We the people have a problem. Some of us will work together in the effort to resolve it, and others will take advantage of it to feather our individual nests. In this particular case the feathers will turn out to be at the expense of massive future suffering, but some people don’t care about the future so long as they can “win” something now.

  5. Hi Clem,
    Didn’t notice you had replied till now (busy life …). Maybe you’ll still see another reply, or maybe someone else will at least… OK, congratulations on reading Wikipedia and discovering why the Maldives are low-lying. But lower marks if you think all atolls will be eternally sustained at sea level by coral growth, despite the rising sea levels. If you read more of the article you may have seen that 2/3 of the corals in the Maldives were killed in 1998 by a particularly warm El Nino. But a well-informed scientist like you probably already knows that corals are dying around the world at an alarming rate, through warming of the sea, pollution and damage by trawling. And your extensive science education presumably includes a knowledge of where to get objective estimates of future rates of sea level rise, like here for instance:
    So you’ll know that if we can hold atmospheric CO2 where it is, we may get 1 meter of sea level rise by 2100. While if we go on increasing CO2 levels (as we are) then that will happen sooner. So, as you know, that is enough to submerge most of the Maldives, so it’s not surprising they are worried. Also submerges a lot of Holland, all of Venice, chunks of the US coast and many other places. So we aim to get CO2 levels back to preindustrial levels, right? (Unless you are a Russian.)
    That was a moderately good joke that people interested in preserving the planet must be Russians. Ha ha – yes, we all know that really the Russian government is one of the worst for opposing carbon control measures. Since they are selling oil and they don’t mind a bit of global warming to improve their cold climate, that sort of makes sense, if it weren’t that some of us would like to have some consideration for our descendants, and the residents of island states and Holland, New Orleans etc.

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