Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Climate Science

If you are looking for a climate-catastrophe skeptic blog by a legit atmospheric scientist, I came across Climate, etc by Judith Curry. Her take is much as mine: there is slight warming since the end of the Little Ice Age; human activity may be affecting the climate, even if it is not the main driver; the evidence for looming catastrophe is simply not there. She likes to talk with reasonable people about "no-regrets" interventions - which also means low-cost. She attributes that to Richard Lindzen of MIT "Don’t take actions that are not otherwise justified.”


Boxty said...

I've been following Judith Curry for a while now. But Scott Adams mentioned on one of his Periscopes that he has talked or interviewed her and didn't find her case any more convincing than the other side. He did not go into details and I wasn't interested in searching for that interview.

Another you might like is Bjorn Lombard. He supports AGW but thinks we can get ourselves out of the problem through technology. He might have done video for Prager U as Dennis Prager talks highly about him.

Assistant Village Idiot said...

Lomborg. Scandinavian, not Italian. Yep. Scott Adams may be right. I would say that she is not less convincing, anyway. If you are steeped in the cultural idea that any problem is a big problem, then Curry saying "I think there's something to it, but not a lot" wouldn't be reassuring. It wouldn't convince you to stop worrying.

Texan99 said...

When Scott Adams talks about persuasiveness, he is concentrating almost entirely on style and effectiveness. He's a bright guy in many ways, but really irresponsible in how he analyzes technical disputes. It's only a slight step above judging which speaker has the best hair, on the ground that research shows people genuinely are affected by differences in hair.

Judith Curry makes enormous sense on the merits, that is, considering the logic of her arguments and the relevance to her arguments of the facts she marshals, in other words, the scientific method. She's an honest arbiter, not in hock to any political goal that tempts her to fudge.

Donna B. said...

I stopped watching network nightly news sometime before 1999, but even then the lack of stories about smog and air quality in Los Angeles and Houston had dwindled to almost nothing. What did we do right? Was it unleaded gasoline, catalytic converters, carpooling... all of the above?

And then carbon credits were invented. Even website hosting companies were buying them so they could advertise their services as "green" or "carbon neutral" or whatever catchphrase was fashionable that year. My family had timberland. We started getting offers to sell our carbon credits... and oh my, every single one of them just screamed "scam". Where before we'd planted trees to replace the ones cut (a 25-30 year investment) or on other types of property, we cut only certain trees to retain and renew, to sell the carbon credits we had to promise to do nothing. No planting, no maintenance harvesting or thinning, no possibility of income for 50 years or more in order for some other industry to be "green". They weren't going to change anything about their operation, but they were going to look good by buying carbon credits.

Um, no. That was when I started paying attention to climate stuff. We freely gave all those carbon credits to the universe rather than selling them, which allowed us to increase the value of them both humans and the universe. Though there is one 160 acre tract that I kinda sorta wish we'd sold them on. It was mostly swamp and a breeding ground for wild boar. They probably fart and belch so it would have been sweetly ironic.

It's not that I don't think human activity has an impact on Gaia, it's that I'm suspicious of those who want to profit off that impact.

DirtyJobsGuy said...


As a native New Hampshire (ite?) what is your personal recollection of the local climate trends. When I was growing up in the Midwest, I remember (confirmed by 8mm movies) my Dad building a skating rink outside every winter in St. Louis Missouri during the 1960’s. This matches records of the movement of earliest planting dates provided by the USDA.

Estoy_Listo said...

This EconTalk interview w/ Russ Roberts is a good introduction to the essence of climate change science and the "wicked problem" of climate change.


Assistant Village Idiot said...

The big storms and the big numbers stand out. The 2' overnight in 1967(?) and the three days of 25 below in 1979, for example. Yet I also recognise that those can mislead. I have no memory of below-zero weather through highschool, yet there must have been a few every winter. I vaguely recall a highschool day when dresscode issues were a big cultural flashpoint and girls were not allowed to wear slacks, but it was so cold that even Cynthia Frink and Eugenie Boutin wore slacks, which may have shattered the wool skirt ceiling for good.

What I decided thirty years ago is that every year we remark what a strange winter it has been. That has been true every year since. This year is a strange winter too.