Re: [asa] Re: Confirmation bias among GW dissenters, but ...

From: John Burgeson (ASA member) <>
Date: Fri May 01 2009 - 14:35:41 EDT

On 4/29/09, Don Winterstein <> wrote:
> There are other possible reasons why petroleum geologists might be less
> willing to support AGW. Among Earth scientists, they are as a group more
> likely to have a better understanding of historical geology than most
> others, especially climatologists ( ? ). Many of them work with the facts
> and concepts on a daily basis. Historical geology teaches that drastic
> climate changes have occurred in the distant and not-so-distant past,
> important ones of which have not been explained. Those changes certainly
> weren't anthropogenic. Judging from the (little) interaction I've had with
> petroleum geologists in recent years, I believe this is their number one
> reason for being skeptical. They think what's going on is like other
> changes that have gone on in the pre-human past.

All that makes some sense, Don, particularly Glenn's argument that CO2
levels and temps rose in the recent past w/o any particular human
influence. Of course geologists have a better view than climate
scientists of past changes. But climate scientists don't operate in a
vacuum; they understand the past as well. See, for instance, the
article and interview in NATURE for 4/16/09.

Now we are, apparently, going to see it all again, only on a very much
reduced time scale (~50 years). The thrust of the climate scientists
now seems to be along the lines of (1) how can we react so the effects
are either not so swift or not so large and (2) how will we deal with
the impending catastrophe.

A 7 foot rise in sea levels and a 4 degree C rise in global temps
would seem (too me) to spell disaster -- millions of people fleeing
the coasts, previously arable farmlands lost to deserts, etc. And
that's the optimistic case if we don't "put on the brakes" right now.

The R party argues for massive investment in nuclear. I'm one D who
thinks they are 100% right on this, at the same time investing in
wind, solar, geothermal, and biofuels.

is a link to another site exploring all of this. The "Put on the
brakes" thread in is another.


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Received on Fri May 1 14:36:40 2009

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