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  #921  
Old 19.02.2010, 21:34
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Re: Global Warming - what's behind it?

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Are you people serious? The ocean sediment cores have proven that our planet goes through warming and cooling cycles as our solar system moves through the Milky Way. How do you explain the Medieval Warming period when temperatures were much higher, agriculture flourished and we had much less CO2 output?
The arrogance of man to assume we can control the weather and temperatures on this planet is laughable. One oceanic volcano will do more to heat the oceans than all the CO2 or methane or any other "greenhouse" gas will.
The whole AGW scam is nothing more than a liberal plan to tax the wealthy countries and use those funds to enslave the developing world by forcing them to abondon burning pletiful wood and coal and making them dependent on foreign aid.
Or, the arrogance of man when he thinks that he can do anything that he wants and not worry about the consequences.

As to whether or not we are serious, the information that you present while valid is but a small part of the picture.

If you think that this is a liberal scam then you have already given up on logic. Your comment is an discussion stopper and you know it.

If you want to actually discuss this issue then fine but you really need to propose a more rational explanation for why this is wrong.

B.
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  #922  
Old 19.02.2010, 22:39
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Re: Global Warming - what's behind it?

You have to admit, the poster above (redneck) has a point. The climate-change career-scientists have created an argument whereby if the temperature either rises or decreases then it's evidence that supports their hypothesis (don't get me started on their ideas of how to define 'statistically significant' either). The climate-gate scandal just underlines how shaky their science really is- very few global warmimg proponents are willing to release the source code of their models or the raw data from which these models are defined. There are very good reasons why these scientists hide their code and data (as a professional software engineer I read the code and comments and understood why almost immediately).

I'm a scientist myself and I really have a problem with the global-warming argument. The only good, useful data ranges back to less than 100 years ago (150 at a push), and from there on it's mostly guesswork. The worst part is when people claim they can influence the impact of global warming by "offsetting carbon credits," or using less water when showering or whatever.

Fareed Zakaria, who believes that global warming is occurring, makes some points that are worth remembering:

http://www.newsweek.com/id/68417

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Most studies predict that the world will double its consumption of energy by 2050. Since much of that growth in consumption will take place in China and India, it will involve the burning of fossil fuels. Between them, these two countries are currently building 650 coal-fired power plants. The combined CO2 emissions of these new plants is five times the total savings of the Kyoto accords--that is, if the Kyoto targets were being adhered to by Western countries, which they are not. Even under the most optimistic scenarios the industrialized world will continue to burn substantial amounts of coal and oil.
So, even if global warming is real, there's nothing you can do individually to stop it. Offsetting carbon emissions is a great example of Slacktivism (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slacktivism), and won't do anything to solve the problem (if it really exisits):


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Slacktivism (sometimes slactivism) is a portmanteau formed out of the words slacker and activism. The word is considered a pejorative term that describes "feel-good" measures, in support of an issue or social cause, that have little or no practical effect other than to make the person doing it feel satisfaction. The acts also tend to require little personal effort from the slacktivist.
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  #923  
Old 20.02.2010, 10:23
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Re: Global Warming - what's behind it?

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(don't get me started on their ideas of how to define 'statistically significant' either).
Could you expand on this?

I thought statistical significance was a well understood, fairly uncontroversial concept.
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  #924  
Old 20.02.2010, 12:11
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Re: Global Warming - what's behind it?

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Or, the arrogance of man when he thinks that he can do anything that he wants and not worry about the consequences.
Or the hubris of man when he thinks that he can change the natural cycles of climate.
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  #925  
Old 20.02.2010, 18:55
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Re: Global Warming - what's behind it?

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So, even if global warming is real, there's nothing you can do individually to stop it. Offsetting carbon emissions is a great example of Slacktivism (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slacktivism), and won't do anything to solve the problem (if it really exisits):
Do you mean like Al Gore buying "carbon offsets" to compensate for his 20,000 sq.ft. house and his, all year long heated, Olympic size swimming pool
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  #926  
Old 21.02.2010, 08:31
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Re: Global Warming - what's behind it?

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I hope that is true, and I am sure that it is. Out of interest, do you have any pointers to studies that conclude this?
I don't have anything handy. I believe Westinghouse claim to be able to build a reactor in 3 years.

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Of course. But you don't get the first unit of extra power until after the commisisioning period. What to do in the meantime?
What does it matter ? It's such a short period of time, what you do is basically irrelevant anyway.

...Which is not to say we *shouldn't* be trying to reduce reliance on fossil fuels, or make things more efficient, but no-one should harbour any illusions that a time period measured in anything less than multiple decades is going to be relevant.

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Hmmm. Can you define "oodles", and quote sources. As for throwing away >90%, while in principle the stuff can be reprocessed and reused, right now, I am not aware of any proven techniques for doing so. We don't know how long how it will take to prove these and scale them up to a commercial size. So right now, we can't plan on having any (certainly not many) of these online.
Huh ? The French have been reprocessing fuel pretty much from the the start. The technology is both proven and in use.

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I strongly disagree. And brings us back on topic .
You can disagree all you want. The simple fact is nothing we can do in a few years - heck, even in the better part of our lifetimes - is going to make a difference on a reasonable timescale.

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This thread is about climate change. Whether it is enough of a cut or not, let's look at the EU's recent statement on reductions targets.
I'm not making any comment on the scale of the cut. I'm making the point that even if we could stop everything in the industrialised world tomorrow, it's not going to make a huge difference as to what happens climate-wise over the next century.

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Let's take 5 years as a very optimistic delivery date for "enough" nuclear power. How much nuclear power would have to be online, starting March 1 2016, and how much by Jan 1 2020, to achieve the emissions reduction goal above? Bear in mind that this "clean" power must be replacing "dirty" power generation.
I don't understand the argument you're trying to make. That large amounts of generation capacity take time to ramp up affects all solutions, so it is in no way a point against nuclear. That what can be done in the short term will not make a significant difference to anything is also not related to nuclear power.

The best we can hope to do is to try and minimise the effects (note: NOT the cause), and make efficiency improvements where possible. The best bet for doing that today is nuclear power.

Again, this is *not* an argument against reducing emissions, reliance on fossil fuels, etc. Those are things that stand on their own. The point is that nothing anyone in Europe can do with regards to improving energy usage, is going to have any meaningful impact on the climate change situation.


As an aside, I have recently moved to the USA, and even though I'd visited a few times previously, and heard about how "bad" they were with regards to this sort of thing, it utterly blows my mind just how deeply ingrained into the culture the assumption of low energy costs is.
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  #927  
Old 21.02.2010, 08:41
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Re: Global Warming - what's behind it?

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Correlation does not imply causation.
Actually, correlation does imply causation. It does not, however, prove it.

Nor is anyone suggesting it does. The question is, which part of the science correlating high CO2 levels with high average global temperatures, do you feel is incorrect ?
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  #928  
Old 21.02.2010, 08:42
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Re: Global Warming - what's behind it?

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Or the hubris of man when he thinks that he can change the natural cycles of climate.
There is reasonable evidence to suggest this "climate cycle" is *not* natural. In particular, the influence of large amounts of CO2 (and other pollutants) generated by artificial means (ie: industrialisation).
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  #929  
Old 21.02.2010, 12:39
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Re: Global Warming - what's behind it?

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Actually, correlation does imply causation. It does not, however, prove it.
Try somewhere like www.dictionary.reference.com
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  #930  
Old 21.02.2010, 21:07
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Re: Global Warming - what's behind it?

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Could you expand on this?

I thought statistical significance was a well understood, fairly uncontroversial concept.
It's not just that it's misunderstood, it's that it doesn't represent what it claims to represent. Here's an extract from one of my favourite authors (Jacob Cohen, 1994, "The Earth Is Round (p < 0.05)"):

"What's wrong with NHST (Null Hypothesis Significance Testing? Well, among many other things, it does not tell us what we want to know, and we so much want to know what we want to know that, out of desperation, we nevertheless believe that it does! What we want to know is "Given these data, what is the probability that Ho is true?" But as most of us know, what it tells us is "Given that Ho is true, what is the probability of these (or more extreme) data?" These are not the same, as has been pointed out many times over the years by the contributors to the Morrison-Henkel (1970) book, among others, and, more recently and emphatically, by Meehl (1978, 1986, 1990a, 1990b), Gigerenzer( 1993), Falk and Greenbaum (in press), and yours truly (Cohen, 1990)."

"The following syllogism is sensible and also the formally correct modus tollens:

If a person is a Martian, then he is not a member of Congress.
This person is a member of Congress.
Therefore, he is not a Martian.

Sounds reasonable, no? This next syllogism is not sensible because the major premise is wrong, but the reasoning is as before and still a formally correct modus tollens:

If a person is an American, then he is not a member of Congress.
(WRONG!)
This person is a member of Congress.
Therefore, he is not an American.

If the major premise is made sensible by making it probabilistic, not absolute, the syllogism becomes formally incorrect and leads to a conclusion that is not sensible:

If a person is an American, then he is probably not a member
of Congress. (TRUE, RIGHT?)
This person is a member of Congress.
Therefore, he is probably not an American. (Pollard & Richardson. 1987)"

The paper goes into a lot of detail that other authors have also noted, but I can summarize some of the arguments:

1. When lay-people hear statistical significance they do not realize how misrepresentative that term is. Say you collect a number of samples and fail to find statistically significant differences. That's one conclusion. Then, you re-run the experiment and find exactly the same results. Your conclusion is the same, right? Not with current statistical methods. Your conclusions are always based on the sample you collect. You can collect a larger sample, find the same results and end up with a statistically-significant result. It's completely flawed mathematics.

2. The cutoffs for statistical significance are arbitrary and have no meaning. It's been convention to relate results that have a so-called p-value less than 0.05 to be statistically significant. Where did this number come from? Why does it apply to all experiments equally? It's a complete illusion.

3. There should not be a singular cutoff for statistical significance across all experiments. Instead, the effect sizes should be reported. Here's an example: imagine if, in physics, the law of elasticity was found. The statistically-significant method would say "if you stretch something, it gets larger (p < 0.05)". This is true, but it doesn't tell you anything about how this is happening or to what limits the phenomenon occurs. Physicists can predict the elasticity of an object. Researchers who investigate null-hypothesis significance tests are happy just to report the direction of effects, and not the size.

I could go on.

But the point is that I don't believe that the science that many prominent climate-change scientists have conducted has been done soundly or even shows consistent results. As I said before, their models account for any increase or decrease in temperature, and the value is often so low that it may fall within the random statistical fluctuance in values one might expect. There's not enough good empirical data to make the strong claims that many of them do, and the mathematical tools they use are easily discredited.
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  #931  
Old 01.03.2010, 19:26
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Re: Global Warming - what's behind it?

A perfect storm is brewing for the IPCC (and the AGW scare)

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The chief defence offered by the warmists to all those revelations centred on the IPCC's last 2007 report is that they were only a few marginal mistakes scattered through a vast, 3,000-page document.

[...]

These were a handful of isolated errors in a massive report; behind them the mighty edifice of global warming orthodoxy remains unscathed. The "science is settled", the "consensus" is intact.

But this completely misses the point. Put the errors together and it can be seen that one after another they tick off all the central, iconic issues of the entire global warming saga. Apart from those non-vanishing polar bears, no fears of climate change have been played on more insistently than these: the destruction of Himalayan glaciers and Amazonian rainforest; famine in Africa; fast-rising sea levels; the threat of hurricanes, droughts, floods and heatwaves all becoming more frequent.

All these alarms were given special prominence in the IPCC's 2007 report and each of them has now been shown to be based, not on hard evidence, but on scare stories, derived not from proper scientists but from environmental activists.

[...]

In addition, we can now read in shocking detail the truth of the outrageous efforts made to ensure that the same 2007 report was able to keep on board IPCC's most shameless stunt of all – the notorious "hockey stick" graph purporting to show that in the late 20th century, temperatures had been hurtling up to unprecedented levels. This was deemed necessary because, after the graph was made the centrepiece of the IPCC's 2001 report, it had been exposed as no more than a statistical illusion.

In other words, in crucial respects the IPCC's 2007 report was no more than reckless propaganda, designed to panic the world's politicians into agreeing at Copenhagen in 2009 that we should all pay by far the largest single bill ever presented to the human race, amounting to tens of trillions of dollars.

(emphasis mine)
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  #932  
Old 02.03.2010, 21:15
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Re: Global Warming - what's behind it?

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This is so tiresome. Booker is a journalist. He writes opinion. He does not back up his assertions with evidence.

In his polemic, there is not a single reference to back up any of his assertions.

What are your motives for quoting Booker's tirade? Do you think that, simply by reading something unfounded that agrees with your opinion, it somehow makes it true?

Are you capable of critical analysis at all?

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It's not just that it's misunderstood, it's that it doesn't represent what it claims to represent. Here's an extract from one of my favourite authors (Jacob Cohen, 1994, "The Earth Is Round (p < 0.05)"):
This sounded to me like all sorts of straw man arguments.

If what you quoted is true, then surely it applies to any inferences drawn from statistical tests?

So the problem is not limited to climate science.

Do you criticise the p<0.05 significance level in general, or just as applied to null hypothesis testing?

Last edited by vwild1; 24.03.2010 at 04:39. Reason: Merged 2 successive posts into 1
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  #933  
Old 02.03.2010, 22:10
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Re: Global Warming - what's behind it?

I didn't want to get into details but as another poster asked about it, I thought I'd elaborate. I don't want to get too far off-topic on this thread as it's a good one. I'll quote a paragraph I wrote in my doctoral thesis with some further reading for those who are interested:

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I do not wish to enter the null-hypothesis significance testing debate, other than to echo Frick’s (1996) sentiments that “among many it is taken as obvious that it should be abandoned” (p. 379). There are many prominent statisticians who have written excellent overviews of the current state of statistical inference in Psychology (e.g. Berger and Sellke, 1987; Cohen, 1994; Goodman and Royall, 1988) and comprehensive guidelines have been given to researchers on the reporting and interpretation of results (APA, 1994; Wilkinson, 1999). Accordingly, p-values are only given as either supporting (p > 0.05) or failing to support (p < 0.05) the null hypothesis. Effect sizes (generalised-eta squared) are calculated for each inferential result or given as the effect-size measure of correlation (r).
Frick, R.W. The appropriate use of null hypothesis significance testing. Psychological Methods, 1996, 1:4, 379-390.

Berger, J.O., and Sellke, T. Testing a point null hypothesis: the irreconcilability of p values and evidence. Journal of the American Statistical Association, 1987, 82:397, 112-122.

Cohen, J. The earth is round (p < .05). American Psychologist, 1994, 49, 997-1003.

Goodman, S.N., and Royall, R. Evidence and scientific research. American Journal of Public Health, 1988, 78:12, 1568-1574.

Wilkinson, L. Statistical methods in psychology journals: guidelines and explanations. American Psychologist, 1999, 54:8. 594-604.

Edit: A more accessible and easy to read summary http://www.andrews.edu/~rbailey/Chap...wo/7217331.pdf

Last edited by Alan_Zurich; 02.03.2010 at 22:13. Reason: Clarification
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  #934  
Old 02.03.2010, 23:32
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Re: Global Warming - what's behind it?

I had to watch this last night

- gloom and doom

http://nsl.caltech.edu/energy.html
http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/events/lectures/feb08.cfm

Then there is this alot of money has been invested in similar programs to no avail
http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=6228923n&tag=contentBody;housin
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  #935  
Old 02.03.2010, 23:48
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Re: Global Warming - what's behind it?

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I didn't want to get into details but as another poster asked about it, I thought I'd elaborate.
Many thanks for the detailed posts.

Interesting that most of the literature on NHST seems to be psychology or at least social science related.
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  #936  
Old 22.03.2010, 20:20
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New Global "Warming" Film Reveals Shocking Hidden Data

Here it is. Part of the film reveals hockey stick graph never audited. Also, water vapour itself is greatest greenhouse gas, also NASA data corrected, and much more. Hey I don't need an opinion. All I need is the data when it comes to science.
PART I

PART II

PART IIII

PART IV

PART V

PART VI
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Old 22.03.2010, 20:23
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Re: New Global "Warming" Film Reveals Shocking Hidden Data

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Hey I don't need an opinion. All I need is the data when it comes to science.
I've heard that conclusions are, occasionally, considered of some relevance in the world of science, though.

No?
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Old 22.03.2010, 20:30
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Re: New Global "Warming" Film Reveals Shocking Hidden Data

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Also, water vapour itself is greatest greenhouse gas, also NASA data corrected, and much more. Hey I don't need an opinion. All I need is the data when it comes to science.

That's nothing new, is it? That's why we pour water onto rocks in a sauna.

So what's carbon got to do with it?
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Old 22.03.2010, 20:56
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Re: New Global "Warming" Film Reveals Shocking Hidden Data

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That's nothing new, is it? That's why we pour water onto rocks in a sauna.

So what's carbon got to do with it?
and what has greenhouses and saunas in common?
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Old 22.03.2010, 21:00
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Re: New Global "Warming" Film Reveals Shocking Hidden Data

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and what has greenhouses and saunas in common?
Naked 20 year old Finnish girls?

... or was that just my Uncle Bertrand's most recent foray into horticulture?
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