Since 1997, you’ve been coming to BarnesandNoble.com to discuss everything from Stephen King to writing to Harry Potter. You’ve made our site more than a place to discover your next book: you’ve made it a community. But like all things internet, BN.com is growing and changing. We've said goodbye to our community message boards—but that doesn’t mean we won’t still be a place for adventurous readers to connect and discover.

Now, you can explore the most exciting new titles (and remember the classics) at the Barnes & Noble Book Blog. Check out conversations with authors like Jeff VanderMeer and Gary Shteyngart at the B&N Review, and browse write-ups of the best in literary fiction. Come to our Facebook page to weigh in on what it means to be a book nerd. Browse digital deals on the NOOK blog, tweet about books with us,or self-publish your latest novella with NOOK Press. And for those of you looking for support for your NOOK, the NOOK Support Forums will still be here.

We will continue to provide you with books that make you turn pages well past midnight, discover new worlds, and reunite with old friends. And we hope that you’ll continue to tell us how you’re doing, what you’re reading, and what books mean to you.

Reply
Distinguished Wordsmith
Everyman
Posts: 9,216
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
0 Kudos

The Climate Debate

The very title of this thread will be anathema to some, who believe that there is no debate.  But I am satisfied that there is more than one side to this issue, and that it matters to us as residents of the earth what is really going on.

 

 The Times (the real one, not the New York or Los Angeles ones) has an article today in which a prominent English politician calls global warminga "new religion."   Two essential elements of a religion, of course, are that true believers are uninterested in counter-arguments, and they are generally dismissive of if not hostile to those who call their religion false.  Certainly a few, maybe some, perhaps many, global warming advocates seem to fall within this definition, though by no means all.

 

The global warming issue has, as we all know, gradually (or not so gradually) become more the province of politicians than of scientists.  Each politician will point to a cadre of scientists who support their position and dismiss those scientists who point to a different outcome.  But politicians are seldom interested in truth for its own sake; they are almost universally more interested in power, winning and then exercising it.   So we citizens are left with the need to look past the political rhetoric and new-religion aspects of the global warming debate to make our own informed decisions.

 

One site which can be of great help here is one started by the editors of the highly respected site Arts and Letters Daily.  As they wrote there, "Along with many friends, I've felt frustrated in recent years trying to reconcile wildly opposed claims about global warming. In order to advance a better grasp of the issues, Doug Campbell and I have created a new website. If global warming questions interest you, we invite you to visit   Climate Debate Daily. "  

 

That site may not give us a definitive answer, but it will certainly help those who are still open minded about the issue understand that there are two legitimate sides to the issue, and that whatever the politicians may want to believe, the scientific community is by no means united or agreed on the issue.  

 

       

_______________
I think, therefore I drive people nuts.
Frequent Contributor
Jon_B
Posts: 1,893
Registered: ‎07-15-2008
0 Kudos

Re: The Climate Debate

Interesting idea for a thread, Everyman.  In addition to the sites you linked, are there any books or authors that you have in mind who've written on the climate - or on the climate debate - and who's views you especially value? 

 

What do you think, for example, of Thomas Friedman's Hot, Flat and Crowded?

 

 

________________________________________

Need some help setting up your My B&N profile? Click here!

Looking for a particular book, but can't remember the title or author? Ask about it here!
Distinguished Wordsmith
Everyman
Posts: 9,216
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
0 Kudos

Re: The Climate Debate

I wanted to keep the initial post on this issue as neutral as possible, and so did not inject my own views into it. 

 

I think one thing all the scientists can agree on is that the earth over its lifetime has gone very naturally through significant cycles of warmer and colder.  The place where I live was once covered by a thick layer of ice.  If the world had not warmed up from that ice age, if the world had not gone through a natural period of global warming unaffected by anything man might have done, I wouldn't be able to live where I do.  (Nor would Manhattanites, who also live in a formerly glacial site.)

 

The globe has also been much warmer in the past than it is now.   Some scientists note with concern the shrinking (but recently growing) polar ice cap, but there have been periods in the earth's history when there was no polar ice cap at all, when all the polar ocean was ice free.  

 

Our mechanized society depends on the existence of oil deposits in the earth.  Those deposits are the result of millenia of flora and fauna dying and decaying.  In order for there to be oil deposits in Northern Alaska, as there are, there must have been a lush growing environment there in the past with abundant vegetation and animal life living and dying in sufficient quantities to lay down such oil deposits.  

 

During the span of recorded history, Europe has gone through the Medieval Warm Period, when grapes grew in England, then the Little Ice Age, when many of the canals and rivers of Europe froze over, and people walked across the ice from Manhattan to Staten Island.   Were these climate changes caused by human activity?   It seems highly unlikely.

 

When I was growing up, the popular scientific magazines were filled with warnings of the coming ice age, that the earth was cooling dramatically, that the Great Plains where wheat and corn grew in such abundance would be too cold to sustain agriculture, that the lush valleys of California would be unable to sustain their hundreds of acres of fruits and vegetables, where world starvation faced the northern latitudes.  Of course, as it turns out, those warnings did not come to pass -- or at least they have not so far, though some scientists do argue that another ice age is still in our fairly near term future.  

 

Is the globe warming today?   It depends on  how and where you measure it. You can get both a yes and a no answer by choosing certain data and ignoring other data.  

 

If the globe is indeed warming, will that be catastrophic for humanity?   I believe it's unlikely.  It will certainly be disruptive to a certain extent -- but then so are many of nature's gifts to us -- earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, hurricanes, tsunamis, tornados, cyclones, floods.   We suffer those, rise above them, and move on.  That's the nature of the human race.   Might some coastal areas become uninhabitable?  Sure.  But that's happening right now.  Much of Galveston Island disappeared this year.  Those who lived there will have to relocate further inland.  Areas of Bangladesh will need to be abandoned within the next few decades no matter what happens to sea level.   The sinking of Venice cannot be prevented forever; the sea will eventually reclaim the city as it has many other cities over the centuries.  So goes Mother Nature.  

 

But I am confident that the human race will overcome whatever nature can throw at us, and continue to thrive until like all species we eventually move to extinction.  But in the meantime, we'll make the best of it, as we always have.  

_______________
I think, therefore I drive people nuts.
Distinguished Wordsmith
Everyman
Posts: 9,216
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
0 Kudos

Re: The Climate Debate

What do you think, for example, of Thomas Friedman's Hot, Flat and Crowded?

 

I haven't read it.  I tend to find that such books on contemporary issues, by the time they have been written and published, are already being passed by, so I tend to rely more on magazine and journals for contemporary issues.  Magazines such as The New Yorker, Atlantic, Harpers, and the like can publish much more quickly and more up to date.

 

However, as to the world being overcrowded, I both agree and disagree.  

 

I agree in that at least in the West we have used our technology to overcome the two major tools with which nature keeps populations in check -- famine and disease.   North America and Europe have not suffered a major famine for a long time.  Nor have we experienced an epidemic on the scale of the Black Death which is estimated to have killed at least a third and perhaps as much as two-thirds of Europe's population.   Famine and disease are the mechanisms by which nature keeps other populations in check, but we have fooled Mother Nature and overcome her best efforts to try to keep the human race from growing out of control.  

 

I disagree in that if you look at the globe as a whole, there are vast swaths of virtually uninhabited areas where humans could, given our technology, easily settle and thrive.  Anybody who has flown from the East to West coasts of the US has seen that for all our crowding in a few major cities, there is room in our country for hundreds if not thousands more cities the size of New York or Los Angeles.  Most of Canada, virtually all of Alaska, virtually all of Siberia, most of the Amazon jungle, vast swaths of Africa, are virtually unpopulated. There is plenty of room for the human race to expand if it really wants to.  (Not to mention that we have not yet begun to develop under/above water cities in the coastal plains of the globe, vast areas where huge cities could be established.)    The challenge, of course, is to feed this population, but that's a solvable problem.  So in that respect, we have barely begun to populate the earth to the extent possible.

 

Not that I want to see this happen.  I think we have too many people on the globe as it is.  But that's a social and environmental opinion.  The capacity is there for a much greater population if we want to sustain it. 

 

 

_______________
I think, therefore I drive people nuts.
Distinguished Bibliophile
KathyS
Posts: 6,898
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
0 Kudos

Overcrowding - Personal Climate

[ Edited ]

On this subject climate:  I agree with what Everyman has addressed, here.  I think our earth's climate does go through many changes, over years and years.  It's just a fact.  But my objection, which might be seen as stretching this issue, is:  Population of this earth, and how does it affect our personal climate.

 

I've mentioned, on other boards, the fact that I've been involved in different initiatives, whether it was regarding strike issues, or 'overcrowding' issues.  I was the one standing out in front of public buildings, with the pen and clipboard in hand.  I've had people yell at me, argue with me, and call me names; telling me I hate children;  I'm against families....you name it!  I stood outside of these places, to place these issues in front of these people, just to be put on the ballot, to be voted upon.

 

Many major concerns come up when you talk about "overcrowding".  We think, just because there is more land, in which to develop, makes it okay to do so.  I've lived in cities, and I've lived in rural communities.  I see the differences within these communities, within these people's attitudes towards each other.  I've seen what over population does to people.  And I've seen what it does to our land, our earth.

 

Growing up, in the now suburbs of Los Angeles, I felt what it was like to enjoy a moderate amount of space around me.  We didn't have the gangs, the shootings, the murders, the rapes, the thefts.  This is a proven fact, that can be show in lab rats.  What happens to them when they become over crowded, they turn against each other.  I won't quote statistics for this, anyone can Google these facts.  This is just one issue - concerning the people who live in these areas.

 

In the community in which I was asked to take this petition, on overcrowding, we were a farming, and retirement community.   I was a young wife, with two kids, and had a husband on the CHP.  I wasn't retired, and I wasn't into farming.  I was involved in my children's school.  I was involved in my church.  I was involved in community awareness.  I lived here because I ran from the city I loved, because of what overcrowding was doing to the people.  The house I bought was built by a family who lived here, with kids who were growing up, here.  Their investment was here.

 

The farmlands around us, in this rural community, were being bought by out of town, out of state, and out of country speculators.  This property meant nothing to them, because they didn't live here.  They wanted the money, that was their only concern  for investing.  They didn't invest in the people, or what would happen if these properties were turned into housing tracts, one right after the other.

 

Our public services:  Water, fire, police, roads, schools - you name it, were affected.  I'm talking about lack of forethought, within, and without, this community.  And I'm sickened by the lack of awareness in people.  Who pays for all of these services, the ones you can't maintain fast enough?  Who pays for all of the crime that these fast growing communities, here in Southern Calif., have had to deal with? You and me, and our children.  Certainly not the people who got their money, and left this mess we've had to deal with! 

 

My neighbor, this morning, asked me:  Why are all of our properties, and parks, and roadways being bought by other governments?  I honestly had no answer for her.  I only know what I've had to deal with, on a local level.  But what are we seeing for the future of the U.S.?  Where is the sight down the road?  If I had one question that I would ask this next Administration, this would be it.  Don't give me platitudes, and rhetoric.

Message Edited by KathyS on 10-02-2008 02:44 PM
Inspired Contributor
Choisya
Posts: 10,782
Registered: ‎10-26-2006
0 Kudos

Re: Overcrowding - Personal Climate

[ Edited ]

Excellent response KathyS.  It is true that the climate has changed significantly throughout the ages - there have been other ice ages, floods etc etc. but the most significant change has been the enormously increased size of the world's population and the demand that is now making on the worlds' resources.  Perhaps for this reason alone, governments need to 'manage' the situation and certainly encouragement to have fewer children, to control populations, is one way of making a difference. 

 

Given the extreme demands, waste and pollution already generated by the current world population I cannot agree that expanding to yet further uninhabited places on the globe is the right way forward.  Perhaps if we learn to consume and pollute less we could earn the right to be good custodians of these wild places but until that time I think we need to both consume and populate less. 

 

Controversially, I have always worried about people's seeming necessity to have their own children.  When I married there were still a lot of WWII refugee children around and I wanted to adopt one or two rather than have my own.  Unfortunately, my husband did not agree and I ended up contributing to the world population problem by having four more consumers and polluters:smileysad:.  There are thousands, possibly millions, of children in the world today who desperately need a home and yet people, like myself, go on producing their own in the belief that 'blood is thicker than water' but why is this so and why must we go on procreating instead of adopting?  Religious books all encourage people to 'go forth and multiply' but that was written when the infant mortality rate was very high indeed and when both mothers and children were always at risk during childbirth. Is it necessary and is it moral that we are seemingly still obeying this ancient advice?   Wouldn't 'go forth and adopt' be better advice in today's world - at least for a time, until the world population goes down significantly? 
      

 

 

 


KathyS wrote:

On this subject climate:  I agree with what Everyman has addressed, here.  I think our earth's climate does go through many changes, over years and years.  It's just a fact.  But my objection, which might be seen as stretching this issue, is:  Population of this earth, and how does it affect our personal climate.

 

I've mentioned, on other boards, the fact that I've been involved in different initiatives, whether it was regarding strike issues, or 'overcrowding' issues.  I was the one standing out in front of public buildings, with the pen and clipboard in hand.  I've had people yell at me, argue with me, and call me names; telling me I hate children;  I'm against families....you name it!  I stood outside of these places, to place these issues in front of these people, just to be put on the ballot, to be voted upon.

 

Many major concerns come up when you talk about "overcrowding".  We think, just because there is more land, in which to develop, makes it okay to do so.  I've lived in cities, and I've lived in rural communities.  I see the differences within these communities, within these people's attitudes towards each other.  I've seen what over population does to people.  And I've seen what it does to our land, our earth.

 

Growing up, in the now suburbs of Los Angeles, I felt what it was like to enjoy a moderate amount of space around me.  We didn't have the gangs, the shootings, the murders, the rapes, the thefts.  This is a proven fact, that can be show in lab rats.  What happens to them when they become over crowded, they turn against each other.  I won't quote statistics for this, anyone can Google these facts.  This is just one issue - concerning the people who live in these areas.

 

In the community in which I was asked to take this petition, on overcrowding, we were a farming, and retirement community.   I was a young wife, with two kids, and had a husband on the CHP.  I wasn't retired, and I wasn't into farming.  I was involved in my children's school.  I was involved in my church.  I was involved in community awareness.  I lived here because I ran from the city I loved, because of what overcrowding was doing to the people.  The house I bought was built by a family who lived here, with kids who were growing up, here.  Their investment was here.

 

The farmlands around us, in this rural community, were being bought by out of town, out of state, and out of country speculators.  This property meant nothing to them, because they didn't live here.  They wanted the money, that was their only concern  for investing.  They didn't invest in the people, or what would happen if these properties were turned into housing tracts, one right after the other.

 

Our public services:  Water, fire, police, roads, schools - you name it, were affected.  I'm talking about lack of forethought, within, and without, this community.  And I'm sickened by the lack of awareness in people.  Who pays for all of these services, the ones you can't maintain fast enough?  Who pays for all of the crime that these fast growing communities, here in Southern Calif., have had to deal with? You and me, and our children.  Certainly not the people who got their money, and left this mess we've had to deal with! 

 

My neighbor, this morning, asked me:  Why are all of our properties, and parks, and roadways being bought by other governments?  I honestly had no answer for her.  I only know what I've had to deal with, on a local level.  But what are we seeing for the future of the U.S.?  Where is the sight down the road?  If I had one question that I would ask this next Administration, this would be it.  Don't give me platitudes, and rhetoric.

Message Edited by Choisya on 10-03-2008 09:38 AM
Distinguished Wordsmith
Everyman
Posts: 9,216
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
0 Kudos

Re: Overcrowding - Personal Climate

Controversially, I have always worried about people's seeming necessity to have their own children.

 

Darwin explained it very well, for those who prefer not to rely on the Biblical proscription to be fruitful and multiply.

_______________
I think, therefore I drive people nuts.
Distinguished Bibliophile
KathyS
Posts: 6,898
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
0 Kudos

Personal Climate

Choisya, yes, this is a very complex situation that this world has found itself in.  It can be broken down into many, many categories, problems and issues.  The two fold situation that I raised, is just that, two...out of many.  It all boils down to many degrees of greed, and with greed comes the lack of thought for another human being on this planet, earth.

 

This is the major point I was trying to get at:  We don't always take the time to break issues down, showing the ramifications of our actions.  Not taking responsibility for these actions, and in the end, only seeing the end results, the problem, instead of what causes these problems.  This is the mentality of people who only see what THEY WANT, in front of them.  I'm not pointing fingers at anyone, for I'm as much to blame as anyone else.  I'm generalizing these categories into one problem.

 

The results of these problems of greed, is what we all end of paying for in the end:  financially, overpopulation, pollution, destroying natural resources, public services, etc - and the list goes on.  Why do we have to create a problem, before we are aware that our actions can cause a reaction?  Cause and effect!  The lack of forethought.

 

The rhetoric you constantly hear from these politicians is:  "We have a problem, so now..I'm the one who's going to fix it!"  It's always about,  how we are going to fix the problem. -  not, "what can we do to PREVENT the problem from happening, or from happening again!"  Obama is the only person I've heard that addresses the issues of prevention.  Starting from the ground up.  How many people in this country hears that?   I don't want to hear about what country we are going to end up in a war with;  I want to hear, what we are going to do to PREVENT that war!

 

Everyone wants quick fixes.  You can't quick fix a problem that has been going on for as long as history!  Politics is corrupt, there is no denying this.  Anyone stepping into the S***, is bound to get it on their shoes.   But I would like to see someone to at least try  to wipe some of the S*** off their shoes, and address these issues! 

 

Okay, I'm off my soap box!

 

Kathy


Choisya wrote:

Excellent response KathyS.  It is true that the climate has changed significantly throughout the ages - there have been other ice ages, floods etc etc. but the most significant change has been the enormously increased size of the world's population and the demand that is now making on the worlds' resources.  Perhaps for this reason alone, governments need to 'manage' the situation and certainly encouragement to have fewer children, to control populations, is one way of making a difference. 

 

Given the extreme demands, waste and pollution already generated by the current world population I cannot agree that expanding to yet further uninhabited places on the globe is the right way forward.  Perhaps if we learn to consume and pollute less we could earn the right to be good custodians of these wild places but until that time I think we need to both consume and populate less. 

 

Controversially, I have always worried about people's seeming necessity to have their own children.  When I married there were still a lot of WWII refugee children around and I wanted to adopt one or two rather than have my own.  Unfortunately, my husband did not agree and I ended up contributing to the world population problem by having four more consumers and polluters:smileysad:.  There are thousands, possibly millions, of children in the world today who desperately need a home and yet people, like myself, go on producing their own in the belief that 'blood is thicker than water' but why is this so and why must we go on procreating instead of adopting?  Religious books all encourage people to 'go forth and multiply' but that was written when the infant mortality rate was very high indeed and when both mothers and children were always at risk during childbirth. Is it necessary and is it moral that we are seemingly still obeying this ancient advice?   Wouldn't 'go forth and adopt' be better advice in today's world - at least for a time, until the world population goes down significantly? 
      

KathyS wrote:

On this subject climate:  I agree with what Everyman has addressed, here.  I think our earth's climate does go through many changes, over years and years.  It's just a fact.  But my objection, which might be seen as stretching this issue, is:  Population of this earth, and how does it affect our personal climate.

 

I've mentioned, on other boards, the fact that I've been involved in different initiatives, whether it was regarding strike issues, or 'overcrowding' issues.  I was the one standing out in front of public buildings, with the pen and clipboard in hand.  I've had people yell at me, argue with me, and call me names; telling me I hate children;  I'm against families....you name it!  I stood outside of these places, to place these issues in front of these people, just to be put on the ballot, to be voted upon.

 

Many major concerns come up when you talk about "overcrowding".  We think, just because there is more land, in which to develop, makes it okay to do so.  I've lived in cities, and I've lived in rural communities.  I see the differences within these communities, within these people's attitudes towards each other.  I've seen what over population does to people.  And I've seen what it does to our land, our earth.

 

Growing up, in the now suburbs of Los Angeles, I felt what it was like to enjoy a moderate amount of space around me.  We didn't have the gangs, the shootings, the murders, the rapes, the thefts.  This is a proven fact, that can be show in lab rats.  What happens to them when they become over crowded, they turn against each other.  I won't quote statistics for this, anyone can Google these facts.  This is just one issue - concerning the people who live in these areas.

 

In the community in which I was asked to take this petition, on overcrowding, we were a farming, and retirement community.   I was a young wife, with two kids, and had a husband on the CHP.  I wasn't retired, and I wasn't into farming.  I was involved in my children's school.  I was involved in my church.  I was involved in community awareness.  I lived here because I ran from the city I loved, because of what overcrowding was doing to the people.  The house I bought was built by a family who lived here, with kids who were growing up, here.  Their investment was here.

 

The farmlands around us, in this rural community, were being bought by out of town, out of state, and out of country speculators.  This property meant nothing to them, because they didn't live here.  They wanted the money, that was their only concern  for investing.  They didn't invest in the people, or what would happen if these properties were turned into housing tracts, one right after the other.

 

Our public services:  Water, fire, police, roads, schools - you name it, were affected.  I'm talking about lack of forethought, within, and without, this community.  And I'm sickened by the lack of awareness in people.  Who pays for all of these services, the ones you can't maintain fast enough?  Who pays for all of the crime that these fast growing communities, here in Southern Calif., have had to deal with? You and me, and our children.  Certainly not the people who got their money, and left this mess we've had to deal with! 

 

My neighbor, this morning, asked me:  Why are all of our properties, and parks, and roadways being bought by other governments?  I honestly had no answer for her.  I only know what I've had to deal with, on a local level.  But what are we seeing for the future of the U.S.?  Where is the sight down the road?  If I had one question that I would ask this next Administration, this would be it.  Don't give me platitudes, and rhetoric.

Message Edited by Choisya on 10-03-2008 09:38 AM

 

 
Scribe
Laurel
Posts: 5,747
Registered: ‎10-29-2006
0 Kudos

Re: The Climate Debate

Now we have another problem on our hands:

 

US. Ice Cubes Melting At Alarming Rate

"Truth must of necessity be stranger than fiction, for fiction is the creation of the human mind, and therefore is congenial to it." ~~G.K. Chesterton
Frequent Contributor
Timbuktu1
Posts: 1,572
Registered: ‎12-31-2007
0 Kudos

Re: The Climate Debate


Everyman wrote:

The very title of this thread will be anathema to some, who believe that there is no debate.  But I am satisfied that there is more than one side to this issue, and that it matters to us as residents of the earth what is really going on.

 

 The Times (the real one, not the New York or Los Angeles ones) has an article today in which a prominent English politician calls global warminga "new religion."   Two essential elements of a religion, of course, are that true believers are uninterested in counter-arguments, and they are generally dismissive of if not hostile to those who call their religion false.  Certainly a few, maybe some, perhaps many, global warming advocates seem to fall within this definition, though by no means all.

 

The global warming issue has, as we all know, gradually (or not so gradually) become more the province of politicians than of scientists.  Each politician will point to a cadre of scientists who support their position and dismiss those scientists who point to a different outcome.  But politicians are seldom interested in truth for its own sake; they are almost universally more interested in power, winning and then exercising it.   So we citizens are left with the need to look past the political rhetoric and new-religion aspects of the global warming debate to make our own informed decisions.

 

One site which can be of great help here is one started by the editors of the highly respected site Arts and Letters Daily.  As they wrote there, "Along with many friends, I've felt frustrated in recent years trying to reconcile wildly opposed claims about global warming. In order to advance a better grasp of the issues, Doug Campbell and I have created a new website. If global warming questions interest you, we invite you to visit   Climate Debate Daily. "  

 

That site may not give us a definitive answer, but it will certainly help those who are still open minded about the issue understand that there are two legitimate sides to the issue, and that whatever the politicians may want to believe, the scientific community is by no means united or agreed on the issue.  

 

       



Everyman, your post took my breath away.  I just had this discussion with someone else and said (well, meant to say) exactly what you have.  It must be the Plato.  Someone has to ask "how do you know this to be true?"  Someone should have asked when we were told that there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.  I'm wondering how they "know" that the bail-out is the thing to do for what surely would have been an "economic Pearl Harbor".  But most of all, global warming IS a religion, a political religion.  My son did a search of his own, discounting UN data as the UN is so corrupt and political ie against the US.  He does not think there is an emergency.  I think temperatures world-wide are up one degree but no one can say why.  OTH, Stephen Hawking believes it's an emergency.  OTH, Michael Crichton says he's still skeptical.  There definitely is room for doubt but religions can't tolerate doubt.
As for me, my mind is still open.  Now I'm going to read your links!

 

Distinguished Wordsmith
Everyman
Posts: 9,216
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
0 Kudos

Re: The Climate Debate

Could this be the technology that addresses three of our concerns at once?

 

This article from Scientific American discusses the creation of gasoline -- not biofuel, but gasoline -- from  algae, which convert carbon dioxide into fuel. 

 

Break our dependence on drilling for fossil oil and  remove large amounts of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, or keep it from entering the atmosphere by siting plants next to large carbon dioxide emitting industries. 

 

Plus the algae will produce proteins which can be converted into food to feed the world's hungry hoards.

 

What could be sweeter?  

_______________
I think, therefore I drive people nuts.
Scribe
Laurel
Posts: 5,747
Registered: ‎10-29-2006
0 Kudos

Re: The Climate Debate

I am very skeptical of global warming. Like Everyman, I remember when the great fear was a new ice age.I just do not have enough faith to believe in something that calls up such fanaticism.

 


Timbuktu1 wrote:

Everyman wrote:

The very title of this thread will be anathema to some, who believe that there is no debate.  But I am satisfied that there is more than one side to this issue, and that it matters to us as residents of the earth what is really going on.

 

 The Times (the real one, not the New York or Los Angeles ones) has an article today in which a prominent English politician calls global warminga "new religion."   Two essential elements of a religion, of course, are that true believers are uninterested in counter-arguments, and they are generally dismissive of if not hostile to those who call their religion false.  Certainly a few, maybe some, perhaps many, global warming advocates seem to fall within this definition, though by no means all.

 

The global warming issue has, as we all know, gradually (or not so gradually) become more the province of politicians than of scientists.  Each politician will point to a cadre of scientists who support their position and dismiss those scientists who point to a different outcome.  But politicians are seldom interested in truth for its own sake; they are almost universally more interested in power, winning and then exercising it.   So we citizens are left with the need to look past the political rhetoric and new-religion aspects of the global warming debate to make our own informed decisions.

 

One site which can be of great help here is one started by the editors of the highly respected site Arts and Letters Daily.  As they wrote there, "Along with many friends, I've felt frustrated in recent years trying to reconcile wildly opposed claims about global warming. In order to advance a better grasp of the issues, Doug Campbell and I have created a new website. If global warming questions interest you, we invite you to visit   Climate Debate Daily. "  

 

That site may not give us a definitive answer, but it will certainly help those who are still open minded about the issue understand that there are two legitimate sides to the issue, and that whatever the politicians may want to believe, the scientific community is by no means united or agreed on the issue.  

 

       



Everyman, your post took my breath away.  I just had this discussion with someone else and said (well, meant to say) exactly what you have.  It must be the Plato.  Someone has to ask "how do you know this to be true?"  Someone should have asked when we were told that there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.  I'm wondering how they "know" that the bail-out is the thing to do for what surely would have been an "economic Pearl Harbor".  But most of all, global warming IS a religion, a political religion.  My son did a search of his own, discounting UN data as the UN is so corrupt and political ie against the US.  He does not think there is an emergency.  I think temperatures world-wide are up one degree but no one can say why.  OTH, Stephen Hawking believes it's an emergency.  OTH, Michael Crichton says he's still skeptical.  There definitely is room for doubt but religions can't tolerate doubt.
As for me, my mind is still open.  Now I'm going to read your links!

 


 

 

 

 

"Truth must of necessity be stranger than fiction, for fiction is the creation of the human mind, and therefore is congenial to it." ~~G.K. Chesterton
Distinguished Bibliophile
KathyS
Posts: 6,898
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
0 Kudos

Re: The Climate Debate

Laurel...so, does this mean you don't think that now faster melting ice cubes is a national disaster? I was cracking up over that one!  Is this all we have to worry about?  Our 90 plus degree weather finally broke, today...so I don't worry too much about whether my ice cubes will be melting faster, or not...they just melt, for cryingoutloud!  :smileyhappy:

 

Global warming is a big debate among scientists, no clear answers, to date.... but I do believe we have to do everything we can to prevent pollutants into the air, and on the earth,  no matter what.  I would like to save it, without thinking that oil is the end all, be all.   I lived around oil fields, in Long Beach, Ca., (Signal Hill), and it was a stinking mess.

 

As Everyman has said, there are alternatives.  I just think we need to stop wasting money, that our government is so famous for, and think more along the lines of alternative fuels and transportation.  

Kathy


Laurel wrote:

I am very skeptical of global warming. Like Everyman, I remember when the great fear was a new ice age.I just do not have enough faith to believe in something that calls up such fanaticism.

 

Scribe
Laurel
Posts: 5,747
Registered: ‎10-29-2006
0 Kudos

Re: The Climate Debate

I'm all for good old fashioned conservation and entrepreneurial ingenuity. I think we can solve problems without scaring little children and turning them into priggish household spies.

 

As for ice cubes, I use them so seldom that they evaporate in my freezer before I have a chance to take them out.

 


KathyS wrote:

Laurel...so, does this mean you don't think that now faster melting ice cubes is a national disaster? I was cracking up over that one!  Is this all we have to worry about?  Our 90 plus degree weather finally broke, today...so I don't worry too much about whether my ice cubes will be melting faster, or not...they just melt, for cryingoutloud!  :smileyhappy:

 

Global warming is a big debate among scientists, no clear answers, to date.... but I do believe we have to do everything we can to prevent pollutants into the air, and on the earth,  no matter what.  I would like to save it, without thinking that oil is the end all, be all.   I lived around oil fields, in Long Beach, Ca., (Signal Hill), and it was a stinking mess.

 

As Everyman has said, there are alternatives.  I just think we need to stop wasting money, that our government is so famous for, and think more along the lines of alternative fuels and transportation.  

Kathy


Laurel wrote:

I am very skeptical of global warming. Like Everyman, I remember when the great fear was a new ice age.I just do not have enough faith to believe in something that calls up such fanaticism.

 


 

 

"Truth must of necessity be stranger than fiction, for fiction is the creation of the human mind, and therefore is congenial to it." ~~G.K. Chesterton
Scribe
debbook
Posts: 1,823
Registered: ‎05-03-2008
0 Kudos

Re: The Climate Debate

I hope that article was a joke. Its so hard to tell these days.

Laurel wrote:

Now we have another problem on our hands:

 

US. Ice Cubes Melting At Alarming Rate


 

A room without books is like a body without a soul.~ Cicero...
"bookmagic418.blogspot.com
Distinguished Bibliophile
KathyS
Posts: 6,898
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
0 Kudos

Re: The Climate Debate

Laurel, I think we're on the same track...but I'm not sure I follow this, "scaring little children and turning them into priggish household spies."  Spies, as in how?

 

The only children I have in my house is my grandkids, ages 7 and 5, every other week.  I haven't heard anything from them, as yet, telling me about what they've learned in school about environmental safety, or saving it, or conserving it....and how I'm not following the rules.  Hmm, I can't wait! LOL

 

I do have a recycling container, so I do try to do that.  I do conserve water, which is mandatory for this region of Calif., since we are in a draught!  Recently I heard that there might be a "garbage container"...(everything that used to go down the garbage disposable)  that could be reclaimed for compost.  Now, that could really be a 'stinky'-wicket!


Laurel wrote:

I'm all for good old fashioned conservation and entrepreneurial ingenuity. I think we can solve problems without scaring little children and turning them into priggish household spies.

 

As for ice cubes, I use them so seldom that they evaporate in my freezer before I have a chance to take them out.

 


KathyS wrote:

Laurel...so, does this mean you don't think that now faster melting ice cubes is a national disaster? I was cracking up over that one!  Is this all we have to worry about?  Our 90 plus degree weather finally broke, today...so I don't worry too much about whether my ice cubes will be melting faster, or not...they just melt, for cryingoutloud!  :smileyhappy:

 

Global warming is a big debate among scientists, no clear answers, to date.... but I do believe we have to do everything we can to prevent pollutants into the air, and on the earth,  no matter what.  I would like to save it, without thinking that oil is the end all, be all.   I lived around oil fields, in Long Beach, Ca., (Signal Hill), and it was a stinking mess.

 

As Everyman has said, there are alternatives.  I just think we need to stop wasting money, that our government is so famous for, and think more along the lines of alternative fuels and transportation.  

Kathy


Laurel wrote:

I am very skeptical of global warming. Like Everyman, I remember when the great fear was a new ice age.I just do not have enough faith to believe in something that calls up such fanaticism.


Inspired Contributor
Choisya
Posts: 10,782
Registered: ‎10-26-2006
0 Kudos

Re: The Climate Debate

What worries me more about this debate is that, once again, America is out on a limb and is disagreeing with the rest of the world.  As with Iraq.  As with the prolonged debate over the recent financial crisis when European governments took similar decisions overnight.  Isn't something wrong when a nation so consistently rows against the tide?   To use literary terms, doesn't it show hubris and mean that a nemesis is on the way, or will there be an anagnorisis?  
Frequent Contributor
Timbuktu1
Posts: 1,572
Registered: ‎12-31-2007
0 Kudos

Re: The Climate Debate

Maybe we have a lot of envious enemies?
Inspired Contributor
Choisya
Posts: 10,782
Registered: ‎10-26-2006
0 Kudos

Re: The Climate Debate

[ Edited ]

My grandchildren are all into recycling and not causing pollution etc. because they learn about such things in junior school.  But is this 'priggish'?  Surely it is a good thing to teach the next generation not to be as wasteful as we have been?  Can any adult defend the amount of waste we produce and the way that we are increasingly polluting the atmosphere and the seas?  Everyman was quite rightly worrying about the way whale watching disturbs their natural environment but the toxic chemicals we daily pour into the oceans are probably doing far more harm to sea mammals and to people.  We know the harm that the Chernobyl nuclear explosion and coal burning power stations have caused but we are now seeing China and India embark on an industrialisation programme which will cause the sort of pollution and respiratory diseases this caused/causes in the West.  Shouldn't we all be a bit 'priggish' about these things?   This what the climate debate is really all about - whether or not there is going to be catastrophic global warming etc there is plenty of evidence that humans are harming the planet and that they should 'mend their ways', if only to guard their own health and that of the animal and plant species around them.        

 

 

 


KathyS wrote:

Laurel, I think we're on the same track...but I'm not sure I follow this, "scaring little children and turning them into priggish household spies."  Spies, as in how?

 

The only children I have in my house is my grandkids, ages 7 and 5, every other week.  I haven't heard anything from them, as yet, telling me about what they've learned in school about environmental safety, or saving it, or conserving it....and how I'm not following the rules.  Hmm, I can't wait! LOL

 

I do have a recycling container, so I do try to do that.  I do conserve water, which is mandatory for this region of Calif., since we are in a draught!  Recently I heard that there might be a "garbage container"...(everything that used to go down the garbage disposable)  that could be reclaimed for compost.  Now, that could really be a 'stinky'-wicket!


Laurel wrote:

I'm all for good old fashioned conservation and entrepreneurial ingenuity. I think we can solve problems without scaring little children and turning them into priggish household spies.

 

As for ice cubes, I use them so seldom that they evaporate in my freezer before I have a chance to take them out.

 


KathyS wrote:

Laurel...so, does this mean you don't think that now faster melting ice cubes is a national disaster? I was cracking up over that one!  Is this all we have to worry about?  Our 90 plus degree weather finally broke, today...so I don't worry too much about whether my ice cubes will be melting faster, or not...they just melt, for cryingoutloud!  :smileyhappy:

 

Global warming is a big debate among scientists, no clear answers, to date.... but I do believe we have to do everything we can to prevent pollutants into the air, and on the earth,  no matter what.  I would like to save it, without thinking that oil is the end all, be all.   I lived around oil fields, in Long Beach, Ca., (Signal Hill), and it was a stinking mess.

 

As Everyman has said, there are alternatives.  I just think we need to stop wasting money, that our government is so famous for, and think more along the lines of alternative fuels and transportation.  

Kathy


Laurel wrote:

I am very skeptical of global warming. Like Everyman, I remember when the great fear was a new ice age.I just do not have enough faith to believe in something that calls up such fanaticism.



 

Message Edited by Choisya on 10-04-2008 02:41 AM
Distinguished Bibliophile
KathyS
Posts: 6,898
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
0 Kudos

Re: The Climate Debate

Choisya, I'm only speaking as one,  myself,  within millions of people.  I wish I had the answers.  I sometimes wish I had the fortitude and energy it takes,  to stand up,  once again, on  that box I called a platform, to go head to head, against people who think that the US, or the world, will stay the same.

 

It won't.  I have feelings, and it's just my feelings, that this next election will be a turning point for something better than what we've seen in the past.  I think people are seeing the need for change.  At least I hope this to be true.

 

Change from the usual complacency's that have worked their way into the minds of these people.  What does it take to change minds along these lines?  You are far more advanced, as a government, in your thinking, which makes me wonder what we've, as a government, and country,  have been thinking, all of these years of separation from what our original beliefs came from, from your country. 

 

We, as a nation are so confrontational, it makes me want to hide myself. As a nation, we've fought to say what we feel!  What we want to fight against, but  I think, to the point,  we've lost sight of what this country should stand for...  It should stand for us, the individual who wants what is best for not just ourselves, but for each other.  We've lost sight, I think, of that concept of Christianity, that this country was supposedly founded upon..  It's now to the extreme.

 

I don't understand it, and I think that most of these people are wanting everything handed to them, just as we give so much to other countries;  but after a while, do these countries really appreciate being handed these gifts, without working for them, or earning them, or seeing what they, themselves can do FOR themselves, to earn what these gifts mean? Our people, or this government,  are no better for this.

 

I don't have the answers.  I don't have the solutions.  I wish I did.  More people, including myself, should write and write, and write to their congress person, their representatives.  These people are representing us!  Force them to hear what we want, by writing to them!    We elect them!  That's the only answers I can give.