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Old 12-15-2016, 06:37 AM
Macrobius Macrobius is offline
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Default Ahknaton and Macrobius talk about the weather

Reading backwards as usual in the SB

[22:29] Macrobius: also, one should clarify what the objective is -- not changing the environment and saving lives? How many people would you be willing to doom to death in order to 'do nothing' to the physical system?
[22:29] Macrobius: I think Taleb's notion of 'doing nothing' is falsely distinguishing 'doing nothing physical' and 'doing nothing political
[22:27] Macrobius: it's ambiguous because having lots of population burning wood isn't exactly doing nothing either
[22:27] Macrobius: I don't think anyone really does formal here
[22:26] Ahknaton: I'm ok with that, but formal would be a misnomer
[22:25] Ahknaton: "if you don't have good information, the best course of action is to do nothing" but is releasing 35 gigatonnes of carbon per annum "doing nothing"?
[22:25] Macrobius: I'll put our convo from the other night in the formal debates section if you are ok with that.
[22:24] Macrobius: Yeah, Ramanathan is a trooper - pretty close to the first person to explain radiative forcing of well mixed gases. And yes, Taleb's problem however is he doesn't explicitly take into account the politics
[22:23] Ahknaton: however, taleb pretty much sidesteps the question of whether the models are accurate:
THE POLICY DEBATE with respect to anthropogenic climate-change typically revolves around the accu- racy of models. Those who contend that models make accurate predictions argue for specific policies to stem the foreseen damaging effects; those who doubt their accuracy cite a lack of reliable evidence of harm to warrant policy action. These two alternatives are not exhaustive. One can sidestep the "skepticism" of those who question existing climate-models, by framing risk in the most straight- forward possible terms, at the global scale. That is, we should ask "what would the correct policy be if we had no reliable models?"


And from the other night:

[21:24] Macrobius: African nations and some of Latin America are the chief non-signatories.
[21:23] Macrobius: US is in violation of the treaty for lots of reasons (weapons, weather mod attempts, etc.)
[21:23] Macrobius: there is a treaty saying environment modification is not allowed and the first world countries are signatories.
[21:22] Macrobius: It gives the history of weather/climate mod attempts with military applications -- there've been a lot of them.
[21:22] Macrobius: yes - so I recommend skimming the first presentation I linked. The PDF is better because it provised source links, but the scribd version is readable on mobile.
[21:21] Ahknaton: it might be that one nation decides to do it unilaterally
[21:21] Ahknaton: I'm pretty skeptical about climate geo-engineering. I think it's going to be put forward as "our only remaining option" some time in the next 20 years
[21:20] Macrobius: I am more concerned the Clintons not be the ones to solve the problem than to see that it isn't solved.
[21:20] Macrobius: The key thing here is that the Clinton Foundation is pay for play and one of their 'things' is Climate Modification and countering global warming.
[21:19] Macrobius: Darwinists get similarly shrill when talking with 'Creationists' and overstate their position.
[21:19] Macrobius: Scott adams is in the business of selling his stuff about groupthink and one might discount his ruminations, but I think he has a point about how little room there is for disagreement even in the teeth of contrary evidence
[21:18] Macrobius: I'll also mention this, which I think is an important take on groupthink
[21:18] Ahknaton: I'm hopeful that a lot of people are basically thinking "let's put some grown ups in charge first, then we can address these problems"
[21:17] Macrobius: Also there will be so much stonewalling maybe nothing will happen at all.
[21:17] Macrobius: The nation is in crisis, and no one has a real plan... so they are going to try things.
[21:16] Macrobius: I'm sure there will be a great deal of muddling (like FDR and the New Deal first 2 years)
[21:16] Macrobius: I'm less concerned with Trumps personal beliefs and more concerned he will fail in his objective of ending the Neo-Liberal reign
[21:15] Macrobius: well there are links to it in the geoengineering presentation PDF I linked, but I'll read them myself and provide a shorter, more digestible version for the casual reader.
[21:15] Ahknaton: I have been hoping he wasn't serious about his skepticism. the china comment seemed like an obvious joke but it was still unclear was his real beliefs are
[21:14] Ahknaton: I'm honestly curious about what their plan is - just hope in a technological deus ex machina perhaps
[21:14] Macrobius: Trump may be changing his mind on the topic - just saw an article on that.
[21:14] Ahknaton: (if polls are to be believed - pretty big if obviously)
[21:13] Ahknaton: one thing that I think is interesting is that there seems to be a large % of people (up to 20% of the total population) who believe in climate change, also believe it is serious, but still support politicians like trump who want to do nothing about it
[21:12] Macrobius: right - it suggests the other guy is a dupe or something, when what you are trying to discuss is methodology and perception.
[21:11] Macrobius: In other words, if the problem is critical, cost will be an object and we should look at his proposal together
[21:11] Macrobius: One thing I will be discussing is the Lawrence Livermore 'Dr Evil' plan suggested by Edward Teller (reduced cost climate engeineering)
[21:10] Ahknaton: e.g. normalcy bias etc
[21:10] Macrobius: It's fine - not a topic I'll drop. I was thinking of writing up my thoughts on Thesis A - the importance of geoengineering weapons Thesis B - the fragility of politics and Thesis C - the lack of impact when simpler alternatives are available.
[21:10] Ahknaton: I have a lot in mind about cognitive biases etc that I think relate to how climate change is perceived and discussed, but it often seems kind of insulting to bring them up when arguing with someone
[21:09] Ahknaton: I appreciate your p.o.v
[21:09] Macrobius: I don't mind discussing it here, but I think it will take more words than people will want to see. For one thing I have three different theses to defend
[21:09] Ahknaton: ok, I will. not right now though, on mobile
[21:09] Macrobius: you should put your assessment on the thread
[21:08] Ahknaton: I don't think it will take extreme measures that kill billions to get the problem under control
[21:08] Ahknaton: it actually seems like the problem is on the verge of being solved, but skeptics are just trying to make it as hard as possible for some reason
[21:08] Ahknaton: germany's efforts to shift to renewables have already been largely successful. and the price of solar has shrunk massively in the last decade
[21:07] Macrobius: *billions a century
[21:06] Macrobius: So urging them to do *anything* is likely to be dangerous in the extreme.
[21:06] Macrobius: I understand. And those leaders have a demostrated capability of doing a great deal of damage that kills billions a decade unnecessarily.
[21:05] Ahknaton: it's not like climate change believers are advocating for a large scale transfer or power from the private individual to the state
[21:05] Ahknaton: one thing that needs to be acknowledged is that energy policy is largely in the hands of the state already
[21:02] Macrobius: (which I could hardly disagree with though I don't see how it would help much or enough to have any impact)
[21:02] Macrobius: so last time we talked, the only thing you were prepared to advocate was accelerated research for alternative forms of energy
[21:01] Ahknaton: they have blamed deteriorating relations between russia and the west
[21:00] Ahknaton: Russian scientists are the most alarmist of all climatologists. they have actually accused western scientists of suppressing their research in order to cover up how bad the situation really is.
[20:54] Macrobius: The fall in education over the last 30 years is horrific -- barbarism ending in night, more or less, as education goes
[20:53] Macrobius: 10 years ago I advocated homeschooling. Now I advocate not bothering with college (or doing it as cheaply as possible if you want a credential)

It is hoped this will develop into an actual discussion...
__________________ #weremight Quot Euclidis discipulos retrojecit Elefuga quasi scopulos eminens et abruptus, qui nullo scalarum suffragio scandi posset! Durus, inquiunt, est hie sermo; quis potest eum audire?
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Old 12-18-2016, 11:35 PM
Macrobius Macrobius is offline
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So here is my summary position on the topic of AGWCC
So it seems to me there are three things going on here:

1. The empirical data about Global Warming and its cause, independent of any hypothesis, are ambiguous. Akasofu's article is criticised for the wrong reason. He's given us a dandy *null hypothesis* to compare the evidence for any putative mechanism against. That is, baseline relaxation from the Little Ice Age (LIA) + multidecadal PDO explains the data as well as an *increase* in the Greenhouse Effect. This is the essence of the point and the only real problem is it will take 25-100 years to settle the matter with data alone. I think Akasofu is correct, and there is a pretty good chance we are going to see level or cooling temperatures, and the CO2 Greenhouse explanation with '97%' suport today will evaporate as the evidence comes in. But why wait? It is not enough to predict Global Warming -- you have to predict it and do better than Akasofu's Null Hypothesis.

2. The RTE (and Radiative-Convective) model of Atmospheric Physics is in trouble. The standard Meteorology treatment is clearly a blow off, and attempts to fix that end up driving into the weeds. Arthur Smith gave a valiant stab at it, and Kramm's points in reply are well taken. This is anything but a settled argument, then, and we Physicists know how it is going to turn out -- the Meteorologists are going to rediscover the work of Chandrasekhar and get their Radiative-Convective equilibrium and transport calculations *correct*. Hopefully, these arguments will clarify the difference between General Circulation Models (GCMs) which are science, and Global Climate Models (GCMs) which are not, and clarify what are the alleged scientific underpinnings of the latter.

3. We are likely looking at a paradigm shift, with the 'Young Turks' (with a few elders of the last generation) being the 3% perhaps, today. But the signs are there that the Old Paradigm will fall - and the GHG explanation of Atomospheric Physics will fall, and undergo significant revision before being admitted as 'science' again, likely in the direction of better microphysics, and explicit inclusion of E&M effects (coupling to Van Allen Radiation belts or what not, and its role in nucleation being one place to watch). We shouldn't discount that Akasofu may know more about this subject than he is able to tell us....

At the very least we need a derivation of that logarithmic formula for Global Temp vs CO2 concentration, which the *Physicists* in this debate think looks suspiciously like something picked up in passing from Arrhenius in the 19th century and re-purposed without serious justification in ICCP AR4.

If someone has better, scientific links than these, do tell. Like Arapaio, just show us a birth certificate and some microfiche and we'll go home -- otherwise, we'll all have to wait for the evidence, even if that's a long time. In this case, show us the RTE microfoundations and derive the formulas in the GCMs from first principles -- or tell us what physical approximations you are using.


I don't think Taleb can be relevant here, even though what he points out is true and correct, because:

1. There is no there there. Where's the heat? Until we see plausible *physical* models underlying the GCM, and/or get some clarifications as to what assumptions the GCMs are making, there is no *back of the envelope* calculation to convince us this is even going to be a problem. At this point, I would be *moar* convinced by a plausible back of the envelope than by obviously broken models perfected by Chinese grad students trying to get a degree handsomely paid for, far above market rates, by their Motherland to fund the Imbalance of Trade.

Hint: If their models were any good, they would go home and give China the best air quality in the world.

2. It is certainly true that both the Neo-Lithic Agricultural Revolution, the Industrial Revolution, and the use of Fossil Fuels instead of a Plutonium economy were all ill advised. I do not believe, with Taleb, that the political policy we should be pursuing is to reverse any of these (except the last <- excellent book. Disclosure, I have met the author and discussed it with him.

3. I'm absolutely a fan of solar power and putting moar money into research. I think this may work *against* AGWCC if it is true, because we won't be burning biomass nor as dirty as China's current haze, and by fixing those problems in theory we are making GHG Radiative Forcing (if it exists) worse.

As promised, here are some links to the Dr Evil plan. They are not hard to read, and show that Edward Teller (like the other members of the Manhattan Project) knew how to do *real* science, not snowflake beta science that the emasculated academics today are force fed.

One question to ask though: Dr Evil assumes carbon is net warming. A few years later, Ramanathan is sure it is net cooling. What is the source of their different takes, and which one is right? Does it matter?
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Old 12-19-2016, 12:12 AM
Macrobius Macrobius is offline
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Quoting Dr Evil, speaking on behalf of 'The Big Boys with the Big Toys':

Introduction. Human fecundity is so great that humanity apparently has almost always lived “on
the edge,” right up against the limits of the carrying-capacity of the physical environment for the
species at the then-current levels of technology, e.g.,. with respect to habitation, food-acquisition
and disease control.
Climate Catastrophes. During the past decade, geophysicists have become extraordinarily adept
at retrieving and analyzing more-or-less quantitative indicators of past climate and associated
atmospheric conditions, ranging from sea bottom cores to those of icepacks of Greenland and
Antarctica. At present, the scientific community has laying before it records of global climate and
atmospheric composition extending back through four large-scale glaciation cycles occurring during
the past half-million years, from the Vostok site in Antarctica and, of even greater present interest,
analyses of annual climatic variations over the Northern Hemisphere going back for the past 150
millennia, from the GRIP sites in Greenland. These very extended ice-core-derived time-series are
supplemented by other climatic records, notably from sea bottom cores, which extend back with
reasonably good temporal resolution back for a few dozen millennia, well into the most recent epoch
of intense glaciation.
The fundamental picture which emerges fi-om these analyses is one of significant, cyclic time variability
in major climatological parameters - e.g., mean annual temperature - with many stacked
periodicities. For instance, in addition to the well-known -100 millennial cycle of large-scale
Northern Hemispheric glaciation, there is evidence for a present-era 1.5 millennium periodicity in
Northern Hemispheric temperature of more than 20 cycles’ duration and a few kelvins peak-to-peak
amplitude, one whose last minimum was 0.4-0.5 millennia ago. Most disturbingly, during the last
interglacial epoch, under prevailing global conditions only slightly - perhaps l-2 K - warmer than
present-day ones, there were several “cold snaps,” intervals of several decades to several centuries
duration during which the (Northern Hemispheric) mean temperature decreased lo- 15 K over
intervals of a few decades, apparently without significant climatological precursors or “warnings” -
at least ones apparent in geophysical records studied through the present. Since mean-temperature
conditions duplicating those preceding these earlier ‘cold snaps’ are currently model-predicted to
occur in “business as usual” climate-change scenarios during the coming century, it seems merely
prudent to consider ways-and-means of preventing their occurrence - the more so as a minor ‘cold
snap’ in at least the Northern Hemisphere was very recently discovered to have occurred only 8200
years ago and as large-scale circulation in the Labrador Sea is currently predicted by some workers
to collapse within the next three decades. While “global warming,” if it should occur over-and above
the natural warming to be expected from the 1.5 millennial thermal periodicity just noted,
certainly would be far less serious in its human dimensions than would full-scale “cold snaps”, it is
also natural f?om a geoengineering perspective to consider technical means of forestalling all-planet
warming due to all causes - anthropogenic and natural - should such changes be determined to be
contrary to human interests-in-the-large.
These form the bases for our present interest in
technologies for preventing “climate catastrophes” of both signs and all magnitudes in mean global
Two years ago, we laid
before this Seminar what we believed - and still believe - to be the currently-practical technical
basis for incrementally shifting either or both of the incoming sunlight to, or the effective mean
albedo of, the Earth, so as to change its temperature by amounts of the order of 1 Kelvin. We
suggested that controlling the amount of sunlight actually arriving in the lower troposphere - or
changing the amount of heat re-radiated by the Earth - seemingly constitute the largest-presently available
levers on the Earth’s mean temperature. Placing scatterers of sunlight of any of several
distinct types within the mid-tropical portion of the mid-stratosphere appeared to be the most
mass-efficient way in which to deploy such insolation-reducing material - with the notable
exception of a diaphanous scattering-screen deployed just inward of the Earth-Sun L-l point, which
may be slightly beyond current technological reach. Deploying preferential scatterers of thermal
infrared (re-)radiation in similar locations - e.g., what we termed “self-lofting LWIR chaff’ -
appeared then to be the most overall-effective means of decreasing the effective albedo of the Earth,
i.e., of forestalling either a “cold snap” or advent of the next hundred millennia of large-scale

Little has changed in these basic respects since our initial presentation....

The 'Earth-Sun Lagrange L1 point' is like geosynchronous orbit for the Sun (basically, a permanent sunblock for the Earth...)

Should we worry about #GlobalCooling? The RUSSIANS say so:
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Old 12-30-2016, 07:05 AM
Macrobius Macrobius is offline
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Dilbert is on a #ClimateGate roll...

I keep hearing people say that 97% of climate scientists are on the same side of the issue. Critics point out that the number is inflated, but we don’t know by how much. Persuasion-wise, the “first offer” of 97% is so close to 100% that our minds assume the real number is very high even if not exactly 97%.

That’s good persuasion. Trump uses this method all the time. The 97% anchor is so strong that it is hard to hear anything else after that. Even the people who think the number is bogus probably think the real figure is north of 90%.

But is it? I have no idea.

I don't find the 97% consensus incredible. Think about religion. Supose you asked 100 'religious leaders' whether they thought 'Jesus was a good man, a religious leader with lots of moral ideas that remain relevant today' -- I bet you could find a '97% consensus among religious leaders about Jesus'. If you don't like my survey question, design your own.

Now, if you ask those same 'religious leaders' to get into details... well it would soon be evident that there is less agreement than might have appeared to be there.

What exactly *is* this consensus that will get you shunned and fired if you don't agree to it? Sounds like a Climate Test Act to me -- a verbal formula that you can't go against, but that is ultimately vacuous when you determine what mental gymnastics people go through to assent to it.
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Old 12-31-2016, 03:59 AM
Macrobius Macrobius is offline
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Here's an excellent overview paper (Hansen et al)

It seems to give state of the art after IPCC AR4 and thus in the run up to IPCC AR5. Good overview of the aerosol concern and the ocean mixing rate concern. They are related because the models over-estimate ocean mixing into the deep ocean, and thus under-estimate the effect of aerosols (like the Ramanathan concerns about biomass burning, black carbon etc)

online data sets from the article
moar generally
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Old 03-11-2017, 10:01 PM
Macrobius Macrobius is offline
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[13:58] Macrobius: So, ending TPP is one of the biggest pro-environment things that can be done. It won't stop the Chinese Oligarchs from killing their own people to stay in power, but at least our Devil's bargain to foul them for Wall Street is ended.
[13:57] Macrobius: The main problem in the world today is china. If you look at the 'virtual water' balance of the planet, you'll find China has participated in the current system by fouling half its water.
[13:56] Macrobius: The Environment will have a way of fighting back, I'm sure.
[13:56] Macrobius: Soviet Environmentalism own you.
[13:46] Ahknaton: The populists sold out to the big business wing on that issue
[13:45] Ahknaton: The right has abandoned environmentalism

Hey look! It's a syllogism.

Akhnaton suggested that the right has abandoned environmentalism.

I countered by suggesting that

1. Virtual Water calculations show that Chinese 'wealth' is coming at the expense of an unbalanced water budget. (Virtual Water accounts for pollution by calculating the Water your economic process would require to dilute the polluted ground and lake water back to pre-production levels of pollution).

2. That the Right's policy can be construed as remediating that problem, since it proposes to end the vicious relationship that makes polluting China lucrative (but the elite there may choose to continue harming their own placid people... though the clock for that is clearly running out).

3. Therefore, despite perhaps being unwitting, the Right is doing moar to defend the Environment than 'carbon footprint' accounting would have done, administered by Leftist Totalitarianism.

All these points can be argued further, of course, but it's an outline of a dialogue that is possible.
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Old 03-11-2017, 10:24 PM
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Ahknaton Ahknaton is offline
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What does TPP have to do with China? The Chinese weren't a part of it.
"Assume your adversary is capable of one trillion guesses per second." - Edward Snowden

"Truly important and significant hypotheses will be found to have 'assumptions' that are wildly inaccurate descriptive representations of reality, and, in general, the more significant the theory, the more unrealistic the assumptions" - Milton Friedman

"My life has been full of terrible misfortunes most of which never happened." - Michel de Montaigne

My thoughts on climate change: "The supreme function of statesmanship is to provide against preventable evils. In seeking to do so, it encounters obstacles which are deeply rooted in human nature. One is that by the very order of things such evils are not demonstrable until they have occurred: at each stage in their onset there is room for doubt and for dispute whether they be real or imaginary. By the same token, they attract little attention in comparison with current troubles, which are both indisputable and pressing: whence the besetting temptation of all politics to concern itself with the immediate present at the expense of the future. At all events, the discussion of future grave but, with effort now, avoidable evils is the most unpopular and at the same time the most necessary occupation for the politician. Those who knowingly shirk it deserve, and not infrequently receive, the curses of those who come after."
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Old 03-12-2017, 01:24 AM
Macrobius Macrobius is offline
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Originally Posted by Ahknaton
What does TPP have to do with China? The Chinese weren't a part of it.

They weren't a party to NAFTA either, yet it seems worth their while to ship goods to Mexico or South America and then truck then into the US for some reason.

Also, it's hard to say Singapore can be a party to anything without involving the Chinese.

But, in any event, any real analysis would be based on what happens to the Carbon and Water flows globally, were it to be ratified.

I discussed those flows here: (Guns, Carbon, and Water)

So, as I said, it doesn't matter who the parties are -- the question is cui bono, and what effect not ratifying it would have on Carbon and Water.

One could similarly argue that emitting Fluorocarbons has no effect on the Ozone layer, because Fluorocarbons are 'not a direct party' to the reactions of the Ozone layer -- oh, but they are. The chemical reactions are just not 'explicit', but the effects are traceable.
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Old 12-11-2017, 06:57 PM
Macrobius Macrobius is offline
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Taleb refines his position, at least by reference. I guess we'll have to wait for the paper

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Old 12-11-2017, 11:20 PM
JJ Cale JJ Cale is offline
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My investigations into climate change are based on a different type of model. I count the number of private jets that show up in town for a climate change conference. It is many.

Now, climate change may or may not be real, but the climate is not why we keep hearing about climate change, it's about control.

If they cared at all about the environment they would not have bombarded western countries, whose population was stabilized, with immigrant hordes.

Apologies for my digression-I'm just making a joke. It's a worthy discussion.
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