Earth ChangesS

Better Earth

Our Oven Earth

The oven analogy was suggested to me by a firm proponent of anthropogenic climate change. The idea was that if one increases the insulation around an oven then it will reach a higher equilibrium temperature for the same energy input. Obviously the suggestion was that extra human greenhouse gases are analogous to extra insulation around an oven.

At first thought that seemed to be a fair and reasonable analogy but I did feel that it did not quite fit the Earth's climate system and it took me a few minutes to work out the flaw. The Earth may be like an oven but because Earth is exposed to space with a flow of energy out to space it is more like an oven with the door open.

So, the heating element represents the sun, the sides, top and base represent the Earth's oceans, the air in the interior cavity represents the air around the Earth, the flow of air in and out of the open door represents the movement of the air around Earth from surface to space as it transfers energy upwards.

Better Earth

Climate change science isn't settled

Yesterday's AFR had an Opinion diatribe by notorious left wing economist John Quiggin, from which the following abstracts come: "While most media outlets give at least some space to these conspiracy theorists (sceptics), the central role has been played by The Australian newspaper. Not only its opinion columnists (with a handful of honourable exceptions) and its editorials, but even its news reporting is dominated by the idea that mainstream science is on the verge of being overturned by the efforts of a group of dedicated amateurs, publishing their findings not in the peer-reviewed literature but through blogs, think tanks and vanity presses".

"The maintenance of this (conservative/sceptical) viewpoint also requires a high degree of insulation from reality. To provide this insulation, the conservative movement has developed a network of think tanks, experts and news sources that amount to an alternative reality in which the inconvenient truths like climate change can be ignored." "Until conservatives adopt a reality-based approach to climate change, as they have done in Europe and the UK, they cannot be taken seriously as an alternative government."

Deliciously (and probably by happenstance, though I guess at the last moment the headline could have been changed to deliberately aim at the Quiggin piece) today's Australian contains the following superb riposte by Jan Veizer:

Cloud Lightning

Remarkable Cooling in the Atlantic May Decrease 2009 Hurricane Activity

Historical observations show that the Atlantic Ocean undergoes long-term shifts in ocean surface temperatures, a phenomenon known as the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO). In 1995, a shift from the cool to the warm phase occurred, and for more than a decade Atlantic Ocean surface temperatures remained above average. However, since the second half of 2008 a remarkable shift has taken place as the Atlantic Ocean has abruptly cooled.

A cooler Atlantic may impact the upcoming hurricane season, as cooler ocean temperatures inhibit storm development. In 2005, when the AMO was near its peak warming, the most active Atlantic hurricane season on record occurred with 27 named storms. Between 2005 and 2009, there have been significant changes in Atlantic Sea Surface Temperature (SST) anomalies.

Bizarro Earth

US: 7 Earthquakes hit Yorba Linda, California

At least seven small earthquakes rattled Yorba Linda on Thursday and Friday, part of what appears to be a surge of seismic activity in the area in recent years, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.

No major damage or emergencies have been reported, said a spokesman for the Orange County Fire Authority.

The largest of the quakes, a magnitude 4 temblor with an epicenter about a mile north of the city, struck at 8:27 p.m. Thursday; the smallest registered 1.8.

A magnitude 3.1 quake hit at 4:06 p.m. Friday.

"It seems like that spot is relatively active, maybe a little more this last year," said Lucile Jones, a Geological Survey seismologist.

When Jones searched the historical catalog for earthquakes in a 150-square-mile area around Yorba Linda in the last 80 years, she found about 70 stronger than magnitude 3. About a third of those have struck in the last nine years.


US: Endless Caverns Bats Suspect

Endless Caverns Virginia
© Michael ReillyBats from Endless Caverns are being tested for white-nose syndrome.
Samples of bats found in the Endless Caverns show cave and suspected of having the deadly white-nose syndrome have been sent to a federal testing facility, the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries confirmed Friday.

If the tests come back positive, it will be the first confirmed case in Rockingham County of the mysterious disease that has wiped out hundreds of thousands of bats in the Northeast. The disease showed up in Virginia for the first time earlier this year, but until now, no bats in the central Valley had been suspected of having the illness.

White-nose syndrome is named for the ring of white fungus that typically appears on infected bats' snouts, and sometimes on other body parts such as wings.

Bizarro Earth

US: Rare Magnitude 3.4 Earthquake In Southern Ohio, Felt In West Virginia

A 3.4 magnitude earthquake centered in Jackson County, Ohio, caused minor shaking this morning in Huntington, Ironton, Proctorville and Ashland, according reports received at the U.S. Geological Survey.

The agency states the quake occurred at 9:42 a.m. It was centered in Oak Hill, Ohio. The depth was measured at 3.1 miles. The Jackson County town is located approximately 50 miles north of Huntington.


'Quiet Sun' baffling astronomers

© SOHO - NASASunspots could be seen by the Soho telescope in 2001 (l), but not this year (r)
The Sun is the dimmest it has been for nearly a century.

There are no sunspots, very few solar flares - and our nearest star is the quietest it has been for a very long time.

The observations are baffling astronomers, who are due to study new pictures of the Sun, taken from space, at the UK National Astronomy Meeting.

Last year, it was expected that it would have been hotting up after a quiet spell. But instead it hit a 50-year low in solar wind pressure, a 55-year low in radio emissions, and a 100-year low in sunspot activity.


UK: Climate change sceptics likened to those who denied HIV Aids link by Lord Stern

Climate change sceptics have been compared to those who denied the link between smoking and cancer or HIV and Aids by Government environmental adviser Lord Stern.

Lord Stern UK
© EPALord Stern warned if nothing is done to keep emissions low, temperatures may rise by up to six degrees with catastrophic consquences.

The respected economist first highlighted the social and economic costs of global warming in his 2006 report for the UK Government the Stern Review.

Now in a new book, the World Bank's former chief economist has warned the science he based his predictions on is out of date. He said levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere are already at 430 parts per million (ppm) and the world has "probably missed the chance" of keeping emissions below 450 ppm.

This means temperatures are likely to rise by at least two degrees Celsius by the end of the century - even if measures are taken to keep the levels of carbon dioxide below 500 ppm - causing a rise in sea levels, greater frequency of storms and a "high chance that the rainforests will collapse".

Comment: The World Bank? Chief economist? Selling books on global warming? And the above paragraph beginning with: This means? This article by The Telegraph comes close to stooping to an all time low for lies and self serving propaganda.

The global warming propagandists are rapidly becoming the global cooling deniers. The level of desperation in their voices and outright spreading of lies via the media demonstrates a total disconnect from reality. The planetary temperature has held steady for almost a decade and even cooled in the last couple of years. Antarctic ice has been growing for decades and continues to grow. The sun has gone ominously quiet. The Average Planetary Magnetic index has been going downward for four years and the exposure of the Earth to cosmic rays has consequently increased in that same period. The evidence goes on and on. Why do the media giants such as The Telegraph want to hide the truth of what is going on out there?

What is it that they want to keep us from learning about?


Study links wildfires in Sierra to climate change

A warming climate will fuel larger, more frequent wildfires in the Sierra Nevada and other parts of the West, and the fires will contribute to climate change, according to a new study.

More than 20 international scientists, in the report published Friday in the journal Science, said fire is not only a consequence of climate change but an important cause.

"Fire also influences the climate system. This is what we call a feedback," Jennifer Balch, a fire expert at the University of California, Santa Barbara, told the Reno Gazette-Journal.

Bizarro Earth

Big earthquake coming sooner than we thought, Oregon geologist says

The good news: New research is giving scientists a better handle on when the big one might strike the Pacific Coast.

The bad news: It probably will be sooner than we thought.

"The amount of devastation is going to be unbelievable," says Rob Witter, coastal geologist with the Oregon Department of Geology and Mineral Industries. "People aren't going to be ready for this. Even if they are prepared, they are going to be surprised by the level of devastation."

Witter spoke last week about the latest in earthquake and tsunami studies -- it's Earthquake and Tsunami Awareness Month -- as part of state and local efforts to educate the public on preparing for a megaquake of magnitude 9 or more. Witter and James Roddey, spokesman for the state agency, also will give a public talk Tuesday in Newport.