Sunday, November 29, 2009

Arctic Ice is Not Recovering -- And it Will Affect Your Backyard Too

Check out the story about Arctic Slush in the November 28, 2009 CBC Radio Quirks and Quarks show.

"[The researchers] were guided by satellite observations that suggested that solid ice was present throughout this part of the Arctic. What they saw instead was something Dr. Barber says he's never observed before - broken, slushy, decayed ice with a thin veneer of harder ice over it, which their ship pushed through as if it wasn't there. This new kind of ice had fooled the satellites, and suggests that the permanent Arctic ice cover is in even more trouble than had been previously thought."

To save you time, here's the link to the WWF video about the Arctic in Your Backyard:

Friday, November 27, 2009

Richard Leakey on Climate Change and the Future of Life on Earth - 2009 ROM Lecture - Free Online Video & MP3 Download

"Richard Leakey, professor of Anthropology at Stony Brook University in New York is best known for his paleontological work in Africa. His lecture, entitled Climate Change and the Future of Life on Earth deals with wildlife conservation and was recorded at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto on May 30th, 2009."
Thanks to TVO's Big Ideas series, you can watch the video (embedded version below) or listen to an MP3 recording of the lecture.

Mp3 File (11.2 MB):

We went to this lecture on May 30, and it was very sobering. Leaky says that Climate change poses a dire threat to both human life and wildlife in the tropics and hot arid regions. Many animal species world-wide will go extinct, especially if we do not plan for ways to save them. Worse yet, Leaky now says that losing 50-60% of species could lead to a tipping point where more and more food chains are broken, and you have a "complete collapse of life". While he says that it is "unlikely" that humans would go extinct in the process, thanks to our technology, he does not rule it out explicitly. (Listen around 12:15 to 14:00 minutes:seconds.)

Surviving in a techno-bubble on a lifeless planet -- our children and grandchildren deserve much better. Yet this is what we risk leaving for them unless we act now.

(Episode page on TVO:
Originally aired October 24, 2009 at 5:00 PM Eastern Time.)

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Global cooling? Statisticians reject climate claims

Oh, how I wish it were true and we could stop worrying -- but unfortunately there's no real global cooling:
In a blind test, the AP gave temperature data to four independent statisticians and asked them to look for trends, without telling them what the numbers represented. The experts found no true temperature declines over time.

“If you look at the data and sort of cherry-pick a micro-trend within a bigger trend, that technique is particularly suspect,” said John Grego, a professor of statistics at the University of South Carolina.


Grego produced three charts to show how choosing a starting date can alter perceptions. Using the skeptics’ satellite data beginning in 1998, there is a “mild downward trend,” he said. But doing that is “deceptive.”

The trend disappears if the analysis starts in 1997. And it trends upward if you begin in 1999, he said.
Details at