Few progressives have turned around to face the future; and one can see why, for the progressive who turns around can no longer be in the traditional sense progressive. In the Anthropocene, in addition to the past we seek to escape, now we have a future we want to avoid. We find ourselves squeezed from both ends. The future will at best be about trying to preserve the gains we have already made, not about progress. [more]
“Our greatest responsibility is to be good ancestors.”
Here are three arguments in support of the proposition that renewables are not enough to solve our problem, and that nuclear power is necessary. [more]
We’re sad to note that Andy Skuce has passed away. Planet3.0 is republishing his farewell blog posting in eulogy. [more]
The moon has no atmosphere so it is scorching hot (+100C) during the day and bitterly cold (-150C) at night. The Earth has an atmosphere made up of oxygen, nitrogen, carbon dioxide (CO2) and other gases. Over 150 years ago scientists proved that CO2 traps heat from the sun. We also know without any doubt that burning fossil fuels like oil, gas and coal emits CO2. [more]
If you don’t know what the poster session is like, you don’t know what AGU is like. I’m here to help. [more]
The key to advancing your scientific conclusion is to be your own harshest critic. As a beginner, you will find yourself wrong far more often than right. But you will be wrong in ever more interesting ways. [more]
Science has a problem. But science doesn’t have a strategy. [more]
There’s new modeling evidence that suggests the world is going to warm more slowly than the global climate models have heretofore suggested.
If we have merely delayed the next ice age, we will still be in the Quaternary Period – the last 2.58m years defined by the ice age cycles. But if we have stopped the ice ages, humans will have caused a much greater change and so have entered the Anthropocene period. [more]
It is not widely understood that carbon dioxide persists in the atmosphere for centuries, so our future will depend on the total amount we humans put into it over the next several decades. This is the paramount fact that separates climate change from all other environmental problems.
– Clive Hamilton Utopias in the Anthropocene
Today is a red letter date in the history of the world, as the Paris Accord comes into effect. Or maybe it isn’t. The political and activist side of the climate community is portraying the accord as a breakthrough and the beginning of a turnaround in the world’s self-destructive path. But many of us who are scientific and technical professionals have a far less sanguine view of the whole thing. [more]
So, why is everyone so ecstatic about this latest xkcd cartoon?
It’s not as if it’s telling us much we didn’t know. [more]
“In the end it’s not about finding policies that work, it’s about forging consensus and fighting cynicism. Can we do this?”
There’s no Supreme Court of Truth, no supreme authority that affixes an imprimatur of “scientific fact”.
Yet we believe many things to be true which we could not have known about without science. It’s obvious that science can draw conclusions which are effectively certain, but it’s less than obvious how this happens. How does speculation turn into hypothesis, then established theory, then fact? It’s a social process more than a formal one. [more]