Archive for the ‘Climatology’ Category

Was There a Civilization On Earth Before Humans?


(Atlantic Science) – Adam Frank:

It only took five minutes for Gavin Schmidt to out-speculate me.

Schmidt is the director of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies (a.k.a. GISS), a world-class climate-science facility. One day last year, I came to GISS with a far-out proposal. In my work as an astrophysicist, I’d begun researching global warming from an “astrobiological perspective.” That meant asking whether any industrial civilization that rises on any planet will, through their own activity, trigger their own version of a climate shift. I was visiting GISS that day hoping to gain some climate science insights and, perhaps, collaborators. That’s how I ended up in Gavin’s office.

Just as I was revving up my pitch, Gavin stopped me in my tracks.

“Wait a second,” he said. “How do you know we’re the only time there’s been a civilization on our own planet?” …

theatlantic 2018/04 civilization



Planetary Boundaries


(Wikipedia) – Planetary boundaries is the central concept in an Earth system framework proposed by a group of Earth system and environmental scientists. In 2009, the group proposed a framework of “planetary boundaries” designed to define a “safe operating space for humanity” for the international community, including governments at all levels, international organizations, civil society, the scientific community and the private sector, as a precondition for sustainable development. This framework is based on scientific research that indicates that since the Industrial Revolution, human actions have gradually become the main driver of global environmental change. The scientists assert that once human activity has passed certain thresholds or tipping points, defined as “planetary boundaries”, there is a risk of “irreversible and abrupt environmental change”. The group identified nine Earth system processes which have boundaries that, to the extent that they are not crossed, mark the safe zone for the planet. However, because of human activities some of these dangerous boundaries have already been crossed, while others are in imminent danger of being crossed. …

Planetary Boundaries
Earth-system process Boundary
Boundary crossed Preindustrial
1. Climate change 350 400 yes 280
1.0 1.5 yes 0
2. Biodiversity loss 10 > 100 yes 0.1–1
3. Biogeochemical 35 121 yes 0
11 8.5–9.5 no −1
4. Ocean acidification 2.75 2.90 no 3.44
5. Land use 15 11.7 no low
6. Freshwater 4000 2600 no 415
7. Ozone depletion 276 283 no 290
8. Atmospheric aerosols not yet quantified
9. Chemical pollution not yet quantified

wikipedia Planetary_boundaries

Planetary Boundaries (2015)

Season of Smoke


(The Intercept) – Naomi Klein:

In a Summer of wildfires and hurricanes, my son asks “Why is everything going wrong?” …

theintercept 2017/09/09 wildfires-and-hurricanes

Fort McMurray wildfire

Time to Talk About Climate Change


(Syfy Wire::Bad Astronomy) – Phil Plait:

Just because we don’t know everything about hurricane Irma doesn’t mean we know nothing. And one thing we know for sure: Climate change has had a hand in making it the behemoth that it is. …

syfy talking-about-climate-change

Hurricanes Katia, Irma, and Jose on 2017-09-07

The Uninhabitable Earth


(NYMagIntelligencer) – David Wallace-Wells:

This article is the result of dozens of interviews and exchanges with climatologists and researchers in related fields and reflects hundreds of scientific papers on the subject of climate change. What follows is not a series of predictions of what will happen — that will be determined in large part by the much-less-certain science of human response. Instead, it is a portrait of our best understanding of where the planet is heading absent aggressive action. …

Famine, economic collapse, a sun that cooks us: What climate change could wreak — sooner than you think …

nymag 2017/07 too-hot-for-humans

Melting Earth

How Much CO² Do Volcanoes Emit?


(Starts With A Bang!) – Ethan Siegel:

Some say it’s more than all of humanity emits in a year. But people say a lot of things. What does the science say? …

starts-with-a-bang bbc045be015d


Scott Adams embarks on the Johnny Hart road


(FTB) – PZ Myers:

I don’t normally read Dilbert — I’ve seen far too much of the benighted ignorant psyche of its creator — but this one was just laid out on a table at the coffee shop, and I knew I’d have to deal with it. In this one, Dilbert goes full climate science denialist. This might be fun, to dissect Dilbert, because even though it will kill what little humor is present in it, at least we’ll have a good time laughing at Scott Adams. Let’s dissect the shit out of this thing. …

pharyngula 2017/05/14 scott-adams

Scott Adams: Dilbert comic strip on 2017-05-14

Angela Chen: “Dilbert creator Scott Adams issues bad-faith ‘climate challenge’

Keith Pickering: “A detailed reply to Scott Adams on climate science

2016 Hottest Year on Record


(Slate::Bad Astronomy) – Phil Plait:

NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Science and Berkeley Earth also released their results, which agree with NOAA: 2016 is the hottest year ever recorded. …

bad_astronomy 2017/01/18 2016_hottest_year

2016 fire

The Oceans Are Warming


(Slate::Bad Astronomy) – Phil Plait:

In 2015, scientists from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration published a paper that angered a lot of climate science deniers. In it, the researchers found that some historic measurements of sea surface temperatures were off by a bit and needed to be corrected. Sounds innocuous enough, doesn’t it?

Fast-forward to Wednesday: A new paper published by a different group of researchers studies the same problem in a different way. What they found confirms the suppositions in the earlier paper: Some ocean temperature measurements were indeed off by a bit, and when corrected, show that the hiatus in warming never existed. In fact, the planet has been warming pretty consistently right through the latter half of the 20th century to today.

Deniers will not be happy about this. …

bad_astronomy 2017/01/05 research_confirms

Sea Surface Temperatures on 2013-12-20

A Message to Breitbart from


(YouTube) – The Weather Channel:

Note to Breitbart: Earth is not cooling, climate change Is real and please stop using our video to mislead Americans. …

youtube UhdymoRTz6M

A Message to Breitbart from