Comments by Stephen Gloor Subscribe

On The Royal Society Gets It Wrong on 'People and the Planet'

Mark - "Similarly for energy - if we deploy sufficient clean energy resources (renewables, nuclear and gas with carbon capture) there is no fundamental limit on human potential energy consumption. Energy is essential for water supply (increasingly with desalination), agricultural production, urbanisation and so on - and here the Limits to Growth assumptions are both anti-development and nonsensical."

So show us the modelling.  In Limits to Growth - the Thirty Year Update sever different scenerios were modelled.

So where is your peer reviewed research that shows unlimited growth is possible.  As you are so confident of this assertion then you evidence must be pretty strong.

Otherwise you are just assuming because we grew for the last 50 years then we can automatically grow for the next 50.

In the words of Alfred Bartlett:

""The greatest shortcoming
of the human race is our
inability to understand
the exponential
 - Prof.
Al Bartlett"

April 28, 2012    View Comment    

On The toxic debate over climate science

"those bloggers published it without even checking with Heartland."


Damn those bloggers.  Heartland ALWAYS checked the stolen emails from CRU with the climate scientists concerned to make sure they were genuine and they were quoted correctly.

Ahh the irony of the Heartland institute whinging about stolen emails.  Karma is a beautiful thing.

Reading Michael Mann's excellent book at the moment "The Hockey Stick and the Climate Wars: Dispatches from the Front Lines"

Recommended reading for anyone that wants to understand climate science a little better.

February 17, 2012    View Comment    

On Meet a Cleantech VC Who is Unconvinced of Man-Made Climate Change

Paul O - "Is this the Truth Behind the Renewables Movement ?"

No Paul it is the truth behind our society and all societies before us.  There are rip off merchants in all industries out to make a quick buck at everyone's expense.  The renewable industry is not immune from this. 

January 8, 2012    View Comment    

On Meet a Cleantech VC Who is Unconvinced of Man-Made Climate Change

Moving this back to where it can be seen .....

Willem Post - "It does not matter what causes global warming, because the people of the world will NOT do anything meaningful in a timely manner to reverse fossil consumption trends."

It does matter.  You started this thread as a denier and ended up with this.  Why implement energy efficiency if the reduction of CO2 production will make no difference? 

I actually share you views on how society will react.  As long as the rich can get richer and the poor get poorer ie: business as usual can go on we will.  When the climate changes or the economy changes sufficiently to make this impossible then the rich will quarantine themselves off as best they can and leave the rest of us to it.

However it matters a lot to tell the truth as far as we know it at present.  This present episode of climate change is man made due to our actions of land use changes and greenhouse gas emissions from all sources.

You started the thread quoting deceptive lies from well known climate change deniers.  How about you tell the science as it is presently understood from the peer reviewed literature and leave the denier pseudo science to the ignorant and gullible. 

January 7, 2012    View Comment    

On Meet a Cleantech VC Who is Unconvinced of Man-Made Climate Change

Willem - so you have gone from:

"The emphasis by governments and renewables promoters to demonize CO2 is beneficial to their industrial policy and subsidy-driven businesses, but it is grossly misplaced and grossly wasteful, because, according to measured data, the contribution of CO2 to GW appears to be minor."

in your first post to

"Here is an article that states soot is second, after CO2, increasing the melting in the arctic. With the ice gone, there will be major additional changes in the weather and climate"

So what do you actually believe?

You have switched from "manmade GW denier" to "manmade GW acceptor but there's nothing we can do about it" in the space of a few posts.

Soot is associated with burning things that are composed of carbon thereby releasing CO2.  Both are firmly in the anthropogenic category so saying soot is a problem is not diminishing the effects of CO2.

So what is your actual position?

January 7, 2012    View Comment    

On Meet a Cleantech VC Who is Unconvinced of Man-Made Climate Change

Willem - if that is your idea of an interesting article then I understand your position.  If you can't see what is wrong with it then anything I say will be futile.

I just suggest that you run the assertions in the document past the itemised list in Skeptical Science.  All the points made in the document you posted have been thoroughly debunked to the point were we can just say for instance 1. 4 , 7 and 10 in the list.

In your article's case:

"In the 1970s concerned environmentalists like Stephen Schneider of the National Center .... " - number 10

"Earth's climate was in a cool period from A.D. 1400 to about A.D. 1860, dubbed the "Little Ice Age... " - number 30 and 36

"Climate change is controlled primarily by cyclical eccentricities in Earth's rotation and orbit, as well as variations in the sun's energy output...... " - number 2, 32 and 33 

and so on - I am sure you will get the game of bingo.  This does save a lot of work.

January 6, 2012    View Comment    

On Meet a Cleantech VC Who is Unconvinced of Man-Made Climate Change

willem Post - "One is the rebound from the LIA which the record shows has nothing to do with CO2 ppMv, as with the other 13 up and down periods of the last 10,000 years during which CO2 varied less than 1%. Solar activity and other factors are operative, not CO2 ppMv."

Do you actually understand what you have posted here?  Clouds are the least understood part of the whole climate and here you are asserting that one experiment in a cloud chamber means that CO2 is not the main driver of the present climate.  Clouds both reflect solar radiation and trap it.  There is no evidence that heat trapping clouds have changed enough to be the present forcing.

Here is the present cloud cover data.  There is no significant trend upward or downward in global cloud cover to correlate with recent warming.  Even if cosmic rays affect cloud formation and this one experiment is but the first baby step in establishing this then the changes are not being reflected by measurements.

"The other GW is from manmade actions of the last 100 years, such as increased soot on arctic ice causing it to melt, expose more sea surface which absobs energy, whereas ice surface reflects it."

The links you posted do not confirm this statement.  Please post the peer reviewed work that shows extra soot being deposited and that the amount is consistent with the Arctic Ice melting.

January 5, 2012    View Comment    

On Meet a Cleantech VC Who is Unconvinced of Man-Made Climate Change

Willem - "There are about 150 comments that take issue with the text and graphs of the URL in your comment. Articles may be peer reviewed, but usually those peers are more or less selected by the author (the echo-chamber effect) and they often are more in agreement than not with the author."

I am sure there are however they have all been rebutted with the real science.  Peers are not selected by the author and saying this demonstrates that you are repeating denier 'facts' without any real understanding of the process.  However peer review is not perfect and no-one thinks it is.  It is a filter and at least filters papers that have bad science in them like most of the denier papers that cannot make it through peer review.

"The science of GW is far from settled. Past data sets are diverse, inaccurate and incomplete. After 1979, the data gathered by satellites became less diverse, more accurate and more complete. During the past 32 years, satellite instrumentation improved allowing many more physical attributes to be measured. Interpretation of the avalance of data is on-going."

The science of GW is completely settled.  It is based on work nearly a century old and not in dispute.  Unless you can dispute the work of Stefan Boltzman or any of the work on the behaviour on greenhouse gases that is well understood then you do not have anything to go on here.

The satellite measurement are all in perfect agreement with theory.  The stratosphere is cooling as predicted and the troposhere is warming in line with the extra trapped heat.  The satellites show this just as the surface temperature record does that has recently been confirmed by a denier sponsored study.

Please at least watch some of David Archers freshman course on the mechanics of GW.

This will take you through the mechanics of GW and if you can dispute any of please submit your paper for publication.

"Manmade GW exists. At present, GW due to LIA rebound may be about 50% of the total WAT increase since 1850, the rest is manmade. Some decades from now, it may be 40% LIA, 60% manmade, and then 30% LIA, 70% manmade."

So it does exist?  I am confused - you said that the science was not settled but here you are assigning confident numbers to the amount of GW is attributable to what process.  How do you arrive at these figures?  Where are the models that show this?  You cannot have it both ways.  If the science is not settled as you claim then your figures are just rubbish plucked out of your head.

I really do not know what you are getting at.

January 5, 2012    View Comment    

On Meet a Cleantech VC Who is Unconvinced of Man-Made Climate Change

Willem Post - "Recent swings are the Roman Warm Period, the Dark Ages, the Medieval Warm Period, the Little Ice Age, and the Present Warm Period with almost NO change in CO2 ppMv, except since about 1900; i.e., other factors are operative."

Of course other factors are operative.  NO-ONE claims that CO2 is the only driver of climate.  Even assuming these climate swings were global, which there is no evidence for, there are many factors affecting the climate and climate scientists are the first to include them. 

"The soot and aerosols emitted by manmade processes influence cloud formation, the climate and the weather and may deduct from the LIA GW in some regions and add to LIA GW in other regions, such as the Arctic, where, due to soot deposition from increased fossil combustion by China and India, there has been increased melting of the sea and land ice."

The current climate change is called "Anthropogenic" because it is caused primarily by human factors.  You are completely inconsistent here.  Are you saying that soot and aerosols are causing the warming?  If so you are just shifting the cause from CO2 to man made aerosols.  Again I do not expect climate change deniers to be consistent however it is nice when they are.

"The American Indians inhabited the US and Canada for about 12,000 years, i.e., before the ice started to melt, and they survived significant climate change, including the 14 warming and cooling periods of the past 10,000 years, with only their primitive means, until Europeans arrived and spread chaos and disease and nearly wiped them out."

I am sure they did however they had plenty of room to move around in and low population, neither of which is the case now.  How many climate refugees do you think the USA could take or where does the population of the USA go?

"Whereas it simplifies the PR message of GW activists and renewables promoters to focus on a single GW villain, i.e., CO2 emissions being THE culprit regarding GW, the real situation is entirely different and much more complex. Many other factors, natural and manmade, affect the WAT and the climate."

It does not simplify the message nor is CO2 and other greenhouse gases cited as the problem to 'simplify' the message.  You are correct that the problem is complex however greenhouse gases, when the calculations are done, account for the recent warming far better than anything else.  Again please present the peer reviewed evidence you have to the contrary.

"but it is grossly misplaced and grossly wasteful, because, according to measured data, the contribution of CO2 to GW appears to be minor."

Not according to the peer reviewed literature. Human emitted greenhouse gases are the major driver of recent warming.  

Please at least read the following link that does cite the research behind these conclusions:

January 5, 2012    View Comment    

On Meet a Cleantech VC Who is Unconvinced of Man-Made Climate Change

David - "There are  reputable climate scientists who remain unconvinced. "

The list you presented contains only one scientist (Litzen) with peer reviewed papers in climate science to their credit.  There is no disgreement amongst climate scientist about the mechanics of global warming.  CO2, Methane etc which our society emits in copious quantities are greenhouse gases and are contributing to increasing the amount of heat that the atmosphere retains.  The rise in temperatures has been measured. What is in dispute is what this heat will do as the Earth is a complex system poorly understood.  However we have enough evidence to assume, pretty confidently, that there will be some degree of climate change in our lifetimes. 

"While most scientists seem to believe that, in isolation, increased CO2 concentrations create an increased “greenhouse” effect whereby the CO2 acts like a blanket, preventing more of the heat radiated by the earth from going back into space, at what concentration level and over what time period remains a point of uncertainty and debate."

Most scientists don't seem to believe this - it is scientific fact with our current knowledge of physics.  There is no need to believe it.  Greenhouse gases do act as a blanket - no-one disputes this not even anyone on your list.  The climate sensitivity figure IS debated however it is really only debated in the context of bad effects at 1.5 deg or really bad effects at 3.5deg NOT no effects at all.  There are also some studies that hint of really really bad effects as the polar tundra starts releasing its stored methane.

" If they occurred to a significant degree, all could have sizeable economic and health implications.  But there is no certainty that we will ever pay such a price."

However you do not know that.  There is sufficient evidence from the past that climate change, once it starts, occurs quite rapidly.  Again you are proposing we plan for the best and hope for the best rather than what most people consider is the right thing to do and that is plan for the worst and hope for the best.  Your plan bets the farm on climate change being a benign slow thing that will not really happen until after you are safely dead.  That may not be the case.

I really do not know what you are getting at here.  Basically you seem to be saying "Lets party on as no-one can prove what we are doing is the problem so lets just make heaps of money supplying greentech that we really don't need"  It is a little disturbing that you seem to understand climate change however you require someone to conclusively prove it to you before you think action is required.  And you seem to be quite content to foister the climate change onto later generations rather than fix it now.

January 4, 2012    View Comment    

On Wind Energy is Expensive

willem Post - "Please make a list of items that are incorrect in your opinion."

Most of what you have here is a rehash of a previous post that I provided a quite detailed answer to.  As this made no difference, since you simply trotted out the same arguments, detailed facts obviously make no impression.

I will however do one more that will illustrate that you seem to skim over details.  The GE gas turbine that you reference the "GE FlexEfficiency 50" has several options that you seem to have missed.

In this document:

There are a number of startup options on Page 6.  The fast start option has 50% power in 20 mins and full power in under 30 mins.  Only one profile has a startup time of 60mins and that is the baseload configuration which would never be used for a cycling plant.  I present this as an example of cherry picking information or an unwillingness to research thoroughly the technology you are presenting.

Please refer to my previous answer to the last time you tried a beat up of wind for the same answers to the same wrong statements.

The only thing I agree with you is about energy efficiency.


July 27, 2011    View Comment    

On Wind Energy is Expensive

Willem Post - "Please explain to me why anybody is still "doing" wind? "

Because your analysis is wrong. 

July 26, 2011    View Comment