Thursday, July 7, 2016

NC-20 says 'bring on the Carbon Dioxide'! - I say, What?

I’ve spent a good deal of spare time with NC-20 Burton’s various comments, researching them, seeking out his information and my own, it gets thick since in genuine Gish Gallop fashion, and like a kid with ADD, before one topic is exhausted, he’s off to another, so we can’t focus on one issue at a time as one would do in a Constructive Dialogue.  

But than the Republican PR machine has learned WC Fields' lesson quite well:  "If you can't dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with bullshit" and heap it on fast as you can, so 'they' can't get it cleared up.

Then my time's up and I need to run off.  So I get overwhelmed and all I have to show for it is a trash folder full of false starts.  Couple days ago he zings in this one from deep in right field and I figure I may as well post it while it’s hot, and before it has a chance to joint the trash folder.  My response is a revision of what I posted over at "The Changing Carolina Coast: Managing The Threat Of Rising Water"  comments thread.

In supporting his claim that the physics of CO2 indicate that increasing CO2 in the atmosphere won’t cause hardly any warming - NC-20 Burton invokes the following:

NC-20 Burton… just as adding a 30th blanket to your bed won't warm you as much as adding the 1st blanket did, so adding a few more Gt of CO2 to the atmosphere won't reduce IR emissions by much. 

{That’s not what the experts who understand and work with this physics in real life have to say, your Mr. Happer not withstanding.  Here, see how a real expert explains this complex topic}
David Archer: "Global Warming, Understanding the Forecast" 

Greenhouse gases (GHGs) are colorants. They tint the atmosphere (albeit in the infrared, rather than the visible, part of the spectrum).

The Precious Air Fertilizer (a/k/a carbon dioxide, or CO2) acts as a dye in the atmosphere, which "colors" the atmosphere in the infrared, esp. around 15 µm.

Lordie how you do elevate your heroes to these hyped up mythical realms. Luftgeschäft pure and simple. Muller is no world authority or "most prominent" at anything but self promotion. He did the Berkley study which was more PR stunt than ground breaking science.

And now a Scientific American article from 1920 - what's your point? 

No serious scientist denies that CO2 can increase vegetation (but not necessary fruit or seed yields! - extra stems and leaves, biomass, but often not so good on what people want to eat. Not to mention the other complications CO2-Lovers ignore.  Why no hint of the way this increased CO2 is harming our oceans??

Yes during the carboniferous CO2 levels were much higher, the world was much warmer and quite the different place and human society could not have existed in that environment.

It would so help if folks like you took evolution seriously and learned a little about the progression of life and ecosystems on this planet and how that made our world possible.

Unfortunately we aren't even close to the 30th blanket yet, so there is plenty more warming yet to happen!!!

CC wrote, " a Scientific American article from 1920 - what's your point? No serious scientist denies that CO2 can increase vegetation (but not necessary fruit or seed improvement! - extra stems and leave and biomass, but not so good on what we want to eat. Not to mention the other complications CO2-Lovers ignore."

If you want to know "what's the point" of citing that old SciAm article, perhaps you should read it. This is a photo from that article:

Those are potatoes. The big ones (on the left) have been grown with the benefit of supplementary anthropogenic CO2 (from blast furnace exhaust).  {Yeah, have you spent much time in front of a blast furnace - in a way it’s another example of accumulating interest.  It’s okay for a while, then it’s uncomfortable, then it’s dangerous, then you dry up, then what’s left burns up.}

I like eating potatoes. Don't you?  {Sure. But, I know I don’t want to eat them in front of a blast furnace.}

Who told you that CO2 fertilization doesn't improve yields of "what we want to eat?”  It's untrue.  

 to Dave Burton 7/7/2016

Amazing where contrarian Gish Gallops take one. NC-20, I though we were talking about our accelerating global sea levels and how that acceleration is already impacting our coastal shorelines, estuaries and cities with increasing frequency. (With the guarantee of more, accumulating interest and all that) Now like a ADD kid you're off playing that canard "Hey CO2 increasing plant growth" Sure it does big guy - no one is denying that. 

What you, my dear Burton are denying is that there is so much more to that story. There are other ingredients and there's plenty of mounting evidence that this increasing plant growth, won't be benefiting too many future human food crops, even while vines and weeds get increasingly aggressive.  Not to mention the increase of other pests in a warming world.  (NC-20, Ever consider the bugs that existed back in that hot house world you seem to think we should go back to?)

It also gets back to my assertion that you (and your type in general) are willfully disconnected from the reality of our biosphere's processes and are in no position to education people with your kindergarten selectivity and that incredible ability to shut out important authoritative information that contrary to your cartoonish understanding.

NC-20, here’s where I’ve gotten some of my information from:

The CO2 “fertilization” effect won’t deter climate change 
Posted on June 4, 2013 by Climate Science Watch 
The CO2 fertilization effect is not going to “save” us from the consequences of global warming. News coverage has focused almost solely on the “greening” angle of increased levels of atmospheric COand neglects to mention negative impacts of climate change that are highly detrimental to human agriculture and plant ecosystems in general. Climate impacts like drought, floods, extreme weather, shifting seasons, and increasing ranges of weeds, invasive species, and plant pests will all negatively impact crop yields. 
The following is a guest post by Climate Nexus. Full text in PDF format here. 
The CO2 “Fertilization” Effect Won’t Deter Climate Change 
A recent paper published in Geophysical Research Letters has found that increased levels of CO2 is leading to increased plant cover in some warm, arid environments. The study references a real trend, but news coverage has focused almost solely on the “greening” angle and neglected to mention the many negative impacts of climate change that are extremely detrimental to human agriculture and plant ecosystems in general. These impacts more than outweigh any positive “greening” influence of CO2. 
At the most basic level, agriculture was developed for a stable climate, which climate change is rapidly destabilizing. Climate impacts like drought, floods, extreme weather, shifting seasons, and increasing ranges of weeds, invasive species and plant pests will all negatively impact crop yields.
Looking at increased COas a welcome boost to greening is like being happy that your septic tank is broken because it will fertilize the lawn. 
The claim: . . .  LINK


More Carbon Dioxide is not necessarily good for plants
April 18, 2011 by villabolo

An argument, made by those who deny man made Global Warming, is that the Carbon Dioxide that is being released by the burning of fossil fuels is actually good for the environment. Their argument is based on the logic that, if plants need CO2 for their growth, then more of it should be better. We should expect our crops to become more abundant and our flowers to grow taller and bloom brighter.

However, this "more is better" philosophy is not the way things work in the real world. There is an older, wiser saying that goes, "Too much of a good thing can be a bad thing." For example, if a doctor tells you to take one pill of a certain medicine, taking four is not likely to heal you four times faster or make you four times better. It's more likely to make you sick. …

What would be the effects of an increase of CO2 on agriculture and plant growth in general? The following points make it clear.

1. The worse problem, by far, is that increasing CO2 will increase temperatures throughout the Earth. This will make deserts and other types of dry land grow. While deserts increase in size, other eco-zones, whether tropical, forest or grassland will try to migrate towards the poles. However, soil conditions will not necessarily favor their growth even at optimum temperatures.

2. CO2 enhanced plants will need extra water both to maintain their larger growth as well as to compensate for greater moisture evaporation as the heat increases. Where will it come from? Rainwater is not sufficient for current agriculture and the aquifers they rely on are running dry throughout the Earth (1, 2).

On the other hand, as predicted by Global Warming, we are receiving intense storms with increased rain throughout of the world. One would think that this should be good for agriculture. Unfortunately, when rain falls down very quickly, it does not have time to soak into the ground. Instead, it builds up above the soil then floods causing damage to the crops. The water also floods into creeks, then rivers, and finally out into the ocean carrying off large amounts of soil and fertilizer.

3. Unlike Nature, our way of agriculture does not self fertilize by recycling all dead plants, animals and their waste. Instead we have to be constantly producing artificial fertilizers from natural gas which will eventually start running out. By increasing the need for such fertilizer you will shorten the supply of natural gas creating competition between the heating of our homes and the growing of our food. This will drive the prices of both up.

4. Too high a concentration of CO2 causes a reduction of photosynthesis in certain of plants. There is also evidence from the past of major damage to a wide variety of plants species from a sudden rise in CO2 (See illustrations below). Higher concentrations of CO2 also reduce the nutritional quality of some staples, such as wheat.

5. When plants do benefit from increased Carbon Dioxide, it is only in enclosed areas, strictly isolated from insects. However, when the growth of Soybeans is boosted out in the open, it creates major changes in its chemistry that makes it more vulnerable to insects, as the illustration below shows.

Scientists have been working on understanding increasing atmospheric CO2 and agriculture output, it’s not like it’s a neglected area of study:

What agricultural 'ecosystems on steroids' are doing to the air 
Nicole Casal Moore  |  Nov 19, 2014

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