Thread: Climate changing again..
12-30-2007, 04:35 PM #1
Climate changing again..
Climate Set to Alter California Landscape
By NOAKI SCHWARTZ,
Posted: 2007-12-30 14:28:43
Filed Under: Science News
LOS ANGELES (Dec. 29) - California is defined by its scenery, from the mountains that enchanted John Muir to the wine country and beaches that define its culture around the world.
But as scientists try to forecast how global warming might affect the nation's most geographically diverse state, they envision a landscape that could look quite different by the end of this century, if not sooner.
Photo Gallery: What's the Future Look Like?
Justin Sullivan, Getty Images
If temperatures in California this century climb by 3 to 10 degrees as scientists predict, much of the the state's signature wine region will be wiped out. Click through the photos to see what else is expected to disappear.
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Where celebrities, surfers and wannabes mingle on Malibu's world-famous beaches, there may be only sea walls defending fading mansions from the encroaching Pacific. In Northern California, tourists could have to drive farther north or to the cool edge of the Pacific to find what is left of the region's signature wine country.
Abandoned ski lifts might dangle above snowless trails more suitable for mountain biking even during much of the winter. In the deserts, Joshua trees that once extended their tangled, shaggy arms into the sky by the thousands may have all but disappeared.
"We need to be attentive to the fact that changes are going to occur, whether it's sea level rising or increased temperatures, droughts and potentially increased fires," said Lisa Sloan, a scientist who directs the Climate Change and Impacts Laboratory at the University of California, Santa Cruz. "These things are going to be happening."
Among the earliest and most noticeable casualties is expected to be California's ski season.
Snow is expected to fall for a shorter period and melt more quickly. That could shorten the ski season by a month even in wetter areas and perhaps end it in others.
Whether from short-term drought or long-term changes, the ski season already has begun to shrivel in Southern California, ringed by mountain ranges that cradle several winter resorts.
"There's always plenty of snow, but you may just have to go out of state for it," said Rinda Wohlwend, 62, who belongs to two ski clubs in Southern California. "I'm a very avid tennis player, so I'd probably play more tennis."
Because California has myriad microclimates, covering an area a third larger than Italy, predicting what will happen by the end of the century is a challenge.
Photo Gallery: Effects of Global Warming
John McConnico, AP
A record amount of Greenland's ice sheet melted this summer -- 19 billion tons more than the previous high mark. And for the first time on record, the Northwest Passage was open to navigation.
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But through a series of interviews with scientists who are studying the phenomenon, a general description of the state's future emerges.
By the end of the century, temperatures are predicted to increase by 3 to 10 degrees Fahrenheit statewide. That could translate into even less rainfall across the southern half of the state, already under pressure from the increased frequency of wildfires and relentless population growth.
Small mammals, reptiles and colonies of wildflowers in the deserts east of Los Angeles are accustomed to periodic three-year dry spells. But they might not be able to withstand the 10-year drought cycles that could become commonplace as the planet warms.
Scientists already are considering relocating Joshua tree seedlings to areas where the plants, a hallmark of the high desert and namesake of a national park, might survive climate change.
"They could be wiped out of California depending on how quickly the change happens," said Cameron Barrows, who studies the effects of climate change for the Center for Conservation Biology in Riverside.
Farther north, where wet, cold winters are crucial for the water supply of the entire state, warmer temperatures will lead to more rain than snow in the Sierra Nevada and faster melting in the spring.
Because 35 percent of the state's water supply is stored annually in the Sierra snowpack, changes to that hydrologic system will lead to far-reaching consequences for California and its ever-growing population.
Some transformations already are apparent, from the Sierra high country to the great valleys that have made California the nation's top agricultural state.
The snow line is receding, as it is in many other alpine regions around the world. Throughout the 400-mile-long Sierra, trees are under stress, leading scientists to speculate that the mix of flora could change significantly as the climate warms. The death rate of fir and pine trees has accelerated over the past two decades.
In the central and southern Sierra, the giant sequoias that are among the biggest living things on Earth might be imperiled.
"I suspect as things get warmer, we'll start seeing sequoias just die on their feet where their foliage turns brown," said Nate Stephenson, a U.S. Geological Survey ecologist who is studying the effects of climate change in the Sierra Nevada. "Even if they don't die of drought stress, just think of the wildfires. If you dry out that vegetation, they're going to be so much more flammable."
Changes in the mountain snowpack could lead to expensive water disputes between cities and farmers. Without consistent water from rivers draining the melting snow, farmers in the Central and Salinas valleys could lose as much as a quarter of their water supply.
Any drastic changes to the state's $30 billion agriculture industry would have national implications, since California's fertile valleys provide half the country's fresh fruits, nuts and vegetables, according to the Union of Concerned Scientists' study.
"Obviously, it's going to mean that choices are going to be made about who's going to get the water," said Brian Nowicki, a biologist with the Center for Biological Diversity in Tucson, Ariz.
Among the biggest unknowns is what will happen along California's coast as the world's ice sheets and glaciers melt. One scenario suggests the sea level could rise by more than 20 feet.
Photo Gallery: Areas at Risk of Rising Seas
University of Arizona
Northeast: A map created by University of Arizona scientists, based on data from the U.S. Geological Survey, show areas in the Northeast that would become flooded if the the sea rose one meter.
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Will the rising sea swamp the ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles, the nation's busiest harbor complex, turning them into a series of saltwater lakes? Will funky Ocean Beach, an island of liberalism in conservative San Diego County, become, literally, its own island?
Among the more sobering projections is what is in store for marine life.
The upwelling season, the time when nutrient-rich water is brought from the ocean's depths to the surface, nourishes one of the world's richest marine environments.
That period, from late spring until early fall, is expected to become weaker earlier in the season and more intense later. Upwelling along the Southern California coast will become weaker overall.
As a result, sea lions, blue whales and other marine mammals that follow these systems up and down the coast are expected to decline.
The changing sea will present trouble for much of the state's land-dwelling population, too. A sea level rise of 3 to 6 feet would inundate the airports in San Francisco and Oakland. Many of the state's beaches would shrink.
"If you raise sea level by a foot, you push a cliff back 100 feet," said Jeff Severinghaus, professor of geosciences at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography in San Diego. "There will be a lot of houses that will fall into the ocean."
Copyright 2007 The Associated Press. The information contained in the AP news report may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or otherwise distributed without the prior written authority of The Associated Press. All active hyperlinks have been inserted by AOL.
12-30-2007, 06:50 PM #2
- Join Date
- Jul 2005
- Lake Dunlap, Texas
The earth has been going thru climate changes for eions. Funny--the same people were predicting a new ice age in the early 1970's. Greenland used to be tropical. The south pole--the ice is growing. Ok--I will ask the question--Who's pockets is all this carbon credit BS going to line? Its all about money.
Last edited by Sundance; 12-30-2007 at 10:44 PM.
12-30-2007, 08:15 PM #3
- Join Date
- Jun 2007
It's called making a buck.Laywer speak for f u.
Like insurance, the gov and who ever else decides there is a buck in this is making money.I'm up in canada and now head of the bring back globalwarming initiative.We have had snow on the ground since november. AAAHH i remember the good old days of global warming when still out jetskiing in september.30 years we where not sure there would be snow for christmas.Sure the retailers are happy.
Just gonna pull all our skiis in the shop and run them,to help this global warming crisis, as i freeze my a##!LOL
12-30-2007, 09:50 PM #4
I love this guy....my thoughts as well, lean towards this Earth is always changing, look at dinosaurs, this and that, and we think we are the sole title holders and nothing will change? The only thing that does not change well enough is human behavior. I mean really, aren't we at the END of an ice age and the polar caps are SUPPOSSED to melt...isn't that what happens with endings..so a new beginning takes over elsewhere...LOL
duh..and I have no degree.
Global Warming, humans, Carbon Dioxide
Global Warming: The Cold, Hard Facts?
By Timothy Ball
Monday, February 5, 2007
Global Warming, as we think we know it, doesn't exist. And I am not the only one trying to make people open up their eyes and see the truth. But few listen, despite the fact that I was one of the first Canadian Ph.Ds. in Climatology and I have an extensive background in climatology, especially the reconstruction of past climates and the impact of climate change on human history and the human condition. Few listen, even though I have a Ph.D, (Doctor of Science) from the University of London, England and was a climatology professor at the University of Winnipeg. For some reason (actually for many), the World is not listening. Here is why.
What would happen if tomorrow we were told that, after all, the Earth is flat? It would probably be the most important piece of news in the media and would generate a lot of debate. So why is it that when scientists who have studied the Global Warming phenomenon for years say that humans are not the cause nobody listens? Why does no one acknowledge that the Emperor has no clothes on?
Believe it or not, Global Warming is not due to human contribution of Carbon Dioxide (CO2). This in fact is the greatest deception in the history of science. We are wasting time, energy and trillions of dollars while creating unnecessary fear and consternation over an issue with no scientific justification. For example, Environment Canada brags about spending $3.7 billion in the last five years dealing with climate change almost all on propaganda trying to defend an indefensible scientific position while at the same time closing weather stations and failing to meet legislated pollution targets.
No sensible person seeks conflict, especially with governments, but if we don't pursue the truth, we are lost as individuals and as a society. That is why I insist on saying that there is no evidence that we are, or could ever cause global climate change. And, recently, Yuri A. Izrael, Vice President of the United Nations sponsored Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) confirmed this statement. So how has the world come to believe that something is wrong?
Maybe for the same reason we believed, 30 years ago, that global cooling was the biggest threat: a matter of faith. "It is a cold fact: the Global Cooling presents humankind with the most important social, political, and adaptive challenge we have had to deal with for ten thousand years. Your stake in the decisions we make concerning it is of ultimate importance; the survival of ourselves, our children, our species," wrote Lowell Ponte in 1976.
I was as opposed to the threats of impending doom global cooling engendered as I am to the threats made about Global Warming. Let me stress I am not denying the phenomenon has occurred. The world has warmed since 1680, the nadir of a cool period called the Little Ice Age (LIA) that has generally continued to the present. These climate changes are well within natural variability and explained quite easily by changes in the sun. But there is nothing unusual going on.
Since I obtained my doctorate in climatology from the University of London, Queen Mary College, England my career has spanned two climate cycles. Temperatures declined from 1940 to 1980 and in the early 1970's global cooling became the consensus. This proves that consensus is not a scientific fact. By the 1990's temperatures appeared to have reversed and Global Warming became the consensus. It appears I'll witness another cycle before retiring, as the major mechanisms and the global temperature trends now indicate a cooling.
No doubt passive acceptance yields less stress, fewer personal attacks and makes career progress easier. What I have experienced in my personal life during the last years makes me understand why most people choose not to speak out; job security and fear of reprisals. Even in University, where free speech and challenge to prevailing wisdoms are supposedly encouraged, academics remain silent.
I once received a three page letter that my lawyer defined as libellous, from an academic colleague, saying I had no right to say what I was saying, especially in public lectures. Sadly, my experience is that universities are the most dogmatic and oppressive places in our society. This becomes progressively worse as they receive more and more funding from governments that demand a particular viewpoint.
In another instance, I was accused by Canadian environmentalist David Suzuki of being paid by oil companies. That is a lie. Apparently he thinks if the fossil fuel companies pay you have an agenda. So if Greenpeace, Sierra Club or governments pay there is no agenda and only truth and enlightenment?
Personal attacks are difficult and shouldn't occur in a debate in a civilized society. I can only consider them from what they imply. They usually indicate a person or group is losing the debate. In this case, they also indicate how political the entire Global Warming debate has become. Both underline the lack of or even contradictory nature of the evidence.
I am not alone in this journey against the prevalent myth. Several well-known names have also raised their voices. Michael Crichton, the scientist, writer and filmmaker is one of them. In his latest book, "State of Fear" he takes time to explain, often in surprising detail, the flawed science behind Global Warming and other imagined environmental crises.
Another cry in the wildenerness is Richard Lindzen's. He is an atmospheric physicist and a professor of meteorology at MIT, renowned for his research in dynamic meteorology - especially atmospheric waves. He is also a member of the National Academy of Sciences and has held positions at the University of Chicago, Harvard University and MIT. Linzen frequently speaks out against the notion that significant Global Warming is caused by humans. Yet nobody seems to listen.
I think it may be because most people don't understand the scientific method which Thomas Kuhn so skilfully and briefly set out in his book "The Structure of Scientific Revolutions." A scientist makes certain assumptions and then produces a theory which is only as valid as the assumptions. The theory of Global Warming assumes that CO2 is an atmospheric greenhouse gas and as it increases temperatures rise. It was then theorized that since humans were producing more CO2 than before, the temperature would inevitably rise. The theory was accepted before testing had started, and effectively became a law.
As Lindzen said many years ago: "the consensus was reached before the research had even begun." Now, any scientist who dares to question the prevailing wisdom is marginalized and called a sceptic, when in fact they are simply being good scientists. This has reached frightening levels with these scientists now being called climate change denier with all the holocaust connotations of that word. The normal scientific method is effectively being thwarted.
Meanwhile, politicians are being listened to, even though most of them have no knowledge or understanding of science, especially the science of climate and climate change. Hence, they are in no position to question a policy on climate change when it threatens the entire planet. Moreover, using fear and creating hysteria makes it very difficult to make calm rational decisions about issues needing attention.
Until you have challenged the prevailing wisdom you have no idea how nasty people can be. Until you have re-examined any issue in an attempt to find out all the information, you cannot know how much misinformation exists in the supposed age of information.
I was greatly influenced several years ago by Aaron Wildavsky's book "Yes, but is it true?" The author taught political science at a New York University and realized how science was being influenced by and apparently misused by politics. He gave his graduate students an assignment to pursue the science behind a policy generated by a highly publicised environmental concern. To his and their surprise they found there was little scientific evidence, consensus and justification for the policy. You only realize the extent to which Wildavsky's findings occur when you ask the question he posed. Wildavsky's students did it in the safety of academia and with the excuse that it was an assignment. I have learned it is a difficult question to ask in the real world, however I firmly believe it is the most important question to ask if we are to advance in the right direction.
US being hoodwinked into draconian climate policies
Climate Extremism: the Real Threat to Civilization
Scientists respond to Gore's warnings of climate catastrophe
Global Warming: The Cold, Hard Facts?
12-31-2007, 02:05 AM #5
Cool! More water to jetski on.
12-31-2007, 02:38 AM #6
You guys are a riot! I think I'm fairly conservative until I start reading GH. Canadan, I can honestly say, LMFAO! I knew these darn lawyers were behind global warming! And its supposed to be less litigious in Canada! But whats next guys, nuke the whales?
Last edited by Blue 182; 12-31-2007 at 08:25 PM.
01-01-2008, 01:09 AM #7
Hey guys & Shawn, you know I was just kidding, right? I know you would never harm a whale. But I do still worry about the seal pups. You guys dont have any issues there I should know about?
01-01-2008, 03:02 AM #8
Blue, and all. Think for 1 second that your'e gonna live forever. A once old man told me, Junebug, trust me on this one.....whatever you do on this world, You respect people what they belived on.....but 1 things for sure " I Promised You Nobody Will get Out Of This World Alive"...."Live The Moment"....Live it like it's your last day in this world...................Jammer 1
01-01-2008, 03:11 AM #9
01-01-2008, 12:59 PM #10
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