Earth ChangesS


Is Paul Krugman Inciting Violence?

As people continue to resist draconian greenhouse gas control schemes that would virtually re-order society around energy rationing and technocratic authoritarianism, proponents of such an eco-revolution are ratcheting up the rhetoric of hate.

People such as James Hansen and Al Gore have long been at the forefront of slandering those who oppose them. As my colleague and I wrote in "Scenes from the Climate Inquisition":
Anyone who does not sign up 100 percent behind the catastrophic scenario is deemed a "climate change denier." Distinguished climatologist Ellen Goodman spelled out the implication in her widely syndicated newspaper column last week: "Let's just say that global warming deniers are now on a par with Holocaust deniers." One environmental writer suggested last fall that there should someday be Nuremberg Trials - or at the very least a South African-style Truth and Reconciliation Commission - for climate skeptics who have blocked the planet's salvation.

Former Vice President Al Gore has proposed that the media stop covering climate skeptics, and Britain's environment minister said that, just as the media should give no platform to terrorists, so they should exclude climate change skeptics from the airwaves and the news pages. Heidi Cullen, star of the Weather Channel, made headlines with a recent call for weather-broadcasters with impure climate opinions to be "decertified" by the American Meteorological Society.


A Climate Change Paradox

ocean heat content
© unknown

Australia's Minister for Climate Change, Penny Wong, recently suggested that most of the global warming since 1960, about 85 percent, has happened in the oceans and that change in ocean heat content is thus the most appropriate measure of global warming.

But, calculating from first principles, according to this data the oceans have absorbed far less energy than the IPCC estimates for the impact of rising carbon dioxide levels. While the government data suggests a warming rate of 0.38 watts/ m2 the IPCC data suggests a warming rate of 3.6 watts/ m2 . This is a significant discrepancy of nearly 10:1 and needs to be resolved. If the oceans really are the major heat sink for the planet where is the rest of the energy going? Alternatively, is the error in the IPCC estimates.

Here's my logic:

On June 24, 2009, the Minister for Climate Change posted 'Response to Senator Fielding's questions about the climate change science' (Link).

This article included the above graph and comments reproduced below. The straight red line on the ocean heat content graph, however, is my addition and was not part of the original article. The line was placed by eye and is not claimed to be a least squares line of best fit.

The quoted items below are taken from the Minister's website.
"In terms of the climate system as a whole, only about five percent of the warming since 1960 has taken place in the air."

"Most of warming since 1960 (about 85 percent) has happened in the oceans. Thus, in terms of a single indicator of global warming, change in ocean heat content is the most appropriate."

"The change in ocean heat content since 1960 is shown in the figure below. Note the significant warming trend since 1998."


Skies ready for triple eclipse

© Unknown1995 total solar eclipse
Commencing Tuesday, three eclipses - a lunar eclipse, a solar eclipse and another lunar - will take over the skies, a phenomenon which although experts say is not rare, will nevertheless be nature's grand spectacle.

On July 7, a penumbral lunar eclipse will occur as the moon rises over Australia and sets in western north and south America in the early pre-dawn hours, said C.B. Devgun, director of Science Popularization Association of Communicators and Educators (SPACE).

The eclipse, however, will not be visible over India.

"The penumbral eclipse will be so slight - just about eight percent - that it will not be visible to those in India," Ajay Talwar of the Amateur Astronomers Association told IANS.

Better Earth

Watching whales sure beats killing them

Watching whales is far more profitable than eating them, concludes a report published last week by the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW). It found that revenues from whale watching in 2008 reached $2.1 billion - double the amount earned a decade ago.

"It's clearly the most sustainable use of whales," says Patrick Ramage of the IFAW. "You can watch the same whales dozens of times, but you can only kill a whale once."

Globally, whale watching has grown by 3.7 per cent each year in the last decade. Last year, 13 million people observed whales in 119 countries, supporting 13,000 jobs.


Black bear knocks down Vernon man, steals sandwich

VERNON -- Police say it was an "attack." At this point, New Jersey wildlife officials say, it was an "incident."

Either way, Henry Rouwendal, who was nursing a head injury, dislocated shoulder and other injuries at his Vernon home last night, says his run-in with a hungry black bear was "a pretty wild ordeal."


Costa Rica happiest place on planet

Costa Rica
© unknownCosta Rica's local farmers markets, proof of a green ecological footprint
Latin America tops a global ranking of ecological efficiency positioning Costa Rica as the world's happiest place to live.

The Happy Planet Index reveals a surprising picture of the relative wealth and progress of nations.

Latin America tops the Index with Costa Rica being termed the greenest and happiest country. Nine of the ten highest-scoring nations are Latin American.

The Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Guatemala, Vietnam, Colombia, Cuba, El Salvador, Brazil and Honduras stand second to tenth on the table of the happiest places of the planet.

Bizarro Earth

Strong 6.0 magnitude earthquake shakes Panama

A strong earthquake measuring a magnitude of six shook Panama early Saturday, but there were no immediate reports of casuaties or damage, the US Geological Survey reported. The epicenter of the tremor, which occurred at 1:49 am (0649 GMT), was located 97 kilometers (60 miles) northeast of the capital Panama City.

Bizarro Earth

Chinese floods kill 15, displace 550,000

Beijing - Flooding and heavy rain in southern China have forced 550,000 people to evacuate their homes and killed at least 15, Xinhua news agency reported on Sunday.

The heavy rains that have raged for four days across southern provinces have destroyed houses, flooded crops, cut power, damaged roads and caused rivers to overflow.

Bizarro Earth

Northern Mexico hit by 6.0-magnitude earthquake

Northeastern Mexico's Sea of Cortez region was rocked by an earthquake measuring 6.0 on the Richter scale at around 5 a.m. local time (1100 GMT) on Friday.

By press time, there have been no reports of injuries or property damage. This was partly because the epicenter was out at sea, said the National Seismology Service, which is a unit of the National Autonomous University of Mexico.

Cities in the region, Baja California Sur capital La Paz and tourist town Los Cabos, felt a moderate tremor.

Bizarro Earth

Earthquake of 5.0 magnitude shakes central Colombia

An earthquake of moderate intensity shook central Colombia early Friday morning, with no reports of casualties or damage, said the National Seismological Network of Colombia (NSNC).

The NSNC said the epicenter of the earthquake, measuring 5.0 on the Richter scale, was located in the municipality of Chaparral in the central department of Tolima, at a depth of 30 kilometers, which was considered superficial.

"Most cities in central Tolima, the southwestern departments of Valle del Cauca and Huila, and the mid-western departments of Risaralda and Quindio felt relatively strong shakes when the earthquake took place at local time 5:04 a.m. (1004 GMT)," said a spokesman of the NSNC.