Use access key #2 to skip to page content.

fransgeraedts (99.92)

on global warming a column by johan hari (the independent)

Recs

6

December 04, 2009 – Comments (13)

Johann Hari: How I wish that the global warming deniers were right

 

Are you prepared to take a 50-50 gamble on the habitability of the planet?

 

Friday, 4 December 2009

Close


Chris Coady/NB Illustration

enlarge

Every day, I pine for the global warming deniers to be proved right. I loved the old world – of flying to beaches wherever we want, growing to the skies, and burning whatever source of energy came our way. I hate the world to come that I've seen in my reporting from continent after continent - of falling Arctic ice shelves, of countries being swallowed by the sea, of vicious wars for the water and land that remains. When I read the works of global warming deniers like Nigel Lawson or Ian Plimer, I feel a sense of calm washing over me. The nightmare is gone; nothing has to change; the world can stay as it was.

 

But then I go back to the facts. However much I want them to be different, they sit there, hard and immovable. Nobody disputes that greenhouse gases trap heat in the atmosphere, like a blanket holding in the Sun's rays. Nobody disputes that we are increasing the amount of those greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. And nobody disputes that the world has become considerably hotter over the past century. (If you disagree with any of these statements, you'd fail a geography GCSE).

Yet half our fellow citizens are choosing to believe the deniers who say there must be gaps between these statements big enough to fit an excuse for carrying on as we are. Shrieking at them is not going to succeed.

Our first response has to be to accept that this denial is an entirely natural phenomenon. The facts of global warming are inherently weird, and they run contrary to our evolved instincts. If you burn an odourless, colourless gas in Europe, it will cause the Arctic to melt and Bangladesh to drown and the American Mid-West to dry up? By living our normal lives, doing all the things we have been brought up doing, we can make great swathes of the planet uninhabitable? If your first response is incredulity, then you're a normal human being.

It's tempting to allow this first response to harden into a dogma, and use it to cover your eyes. The oil and gas industries have been spending billions to encourage us to stay stuck there, because their profits will plummet when we make the transition to a low-carbon society. But the basic science isn't actually very complicated, or hard to grasp. As more carbon dioxide is pumped into the atmosphere, the world gets warmer. Every single year since 1917 has been hotter than 1917. Every single year since 1956 has been hotter than 1956. Every single year since 1992 has been hotter than 1992. And on, and on. If we dramatically increase the carbon dioxide even more – as we are – we will dramatically increase the warming. Many parts of the world will dry up or flood or burn.

This is such an uncomfortable claim that I too I have tried to grasp at any straw that suggests it is wrong. One of the most tempting has come in the past few weeks, when the emails of the Hadley Centre at the University of East Anglia were hacked into, and seem on an initial reading to show that a few of their scientists were misrepresenting their research to suggest the problem is slightly worse than it is. Some people have seized on it as a fatal blow – a Pentagon Papers for global warming.

But then I looked at the facts. It was discovered more than a century ago that burning fossil fuels would release warming gases and therefore increase global temperatures, and since then, hundreds of thousands of scientists have independently reached the conclusion that it will have terrible consequences. It would be very surprising if, somewhere among them, there wasn't a charlatan or two who over-hyped their work. Such people exist in every single field of science (and they are deplorable).

So let's knock out the Hadley Centre's evidence. Here are just a fraction of the major scientific organisations that have independently verified the evidence that man-made global warming is real, and dangerous: Nasa's Goddard Institute for Space Studies, the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, L'Academie des Sciences, the Indian National Science Academy, the US National Academy of Sciences, the Deutsche Akademie der Naturforscher Leopoldina, the UK's Royal Society, the Academia Brasileira de Ciencias, the Chinese Academy of Sciences, the Russian Academy of Sciences, the US Environmental Protection Agency... I could fill this entire article with these names.

And they haven't only used one method to study the evidence. They've used satellite data, sea level measurements, borehole analysis, sea ice melt, permafrost melt, glacial melt, drought analysis, and on and on. All of this evidence from all of these scientists using all these methods has pointed in one direction. As the conservative journalist Hugo Rifkind put it, the Hadley Centre no more discredits climate science than Harold Shipman discredits GPs.

A study for the journal Science randomly sampled 928 published peer-reviewed scientific papers that used the words "climate change". It found that 100 per cent – every single one – agreed it is being fuelled by human activity. There is no debate among climate scientists. There are a few scientists who don't conduct research into the climate who disagree, but going to them to find out how global warming works is a bit like going to a chiropodist and asking her to look at your ears.

Part of the confusion in the public mind seems to stem from the failure to understand that two things are happening at once. There has always been – and always will be – natural variation in the climate. The ebb from hot to cold is part of Planet Earth. But on top of that, we are adding a large human blast of warming – and it is disrupting the natural rhythm. So when, in opinion polls, people say warming is "natural", they are right, but it's only one part of the story.

Once you have grasped this, it's easy to see through the claim that global warming stopped in 1998 and the world has been cooling ever since. In 1998, two things came together: the natural warming process of El Nino was at its peak, and our human emissions of warming gases were also rising – so we got the hottest year ever recorded. Then El Nino abated, but the carbon emissions kept up. That's why the world has remained far warmer than before – eight of the 10 hottest years on record have happened in the past decade – without quite reaching the same peak. Again: if we carry on pumping out warming gases, we will carry on getting warmer.

That's why I won't use the word "sceptic" to describe the people who deny the link between releasing warming gases and the planet getting warmer. I am a sceptic. I have looked at the evidence highly critically, desperate for flaws. The overwhelming majority of scientists are sceptics: the whole nature of scientific endeavour is to check and check and check again for a flaw in your theory or your evidence. Any properly sceptical analysis leads to the conclusion that man-made global warming is real. Denial is something different: it is when no evidence, no matter how overwhelming, could convince you. It is a faith-based position.

So let's – for the sake of argument – make an extraordinary and unjustified concession to the deniers. Let's imagine there was only a 50 per cent chance that virtually all the world's climate scientists are wrong. Would that be a risk worth taking? Are you prepared to take a 50-50 gamble on the habitability of the planet? Is the prospect of getting our energy from the wind and the waves and the sun so terrible that's not worth it on even these wildly optimistic odds?

Imagine you are about to get on a plane with your family. A huge group of qualified airline mechanics approach you on the tarmac and explain they've studied the engine for many years and they're sure it will crash if you get on board. They show you their previous predictions of plane crashes, which have overwhelmingly been proven right. Then a group of vets, journalists, and plumbers tell they have looked at the diagrams and it's perfectly obvious to them the plane is safe and that airplane mechanics – all of them, everywhere – are scamming you. Would you get on the plane? That is our choice at Copenhagen.

13 Comments – Post Your Own

#1) On December 04, 2009 at 3:08 AM, AbstractMotion (54.43) wrote:

Ladies and gentlemen I present to you Pascal's Wager.

 

Report this comment
#2) On December 04, 2009 at 3:14 AM, whereaminow (28.96) wrote:

How I wish the fraud deniers weren't such alarmists?  Maybe they could ask obama and the necons to stop killing people before they worry about the state of the planet.

David in Qatar

Report this comment
#3) On December 04, 2009 at 5:30 AM, portefeuille (99.60) wrote:

the article.

Johann Hari: How I wish that the global warming deniers were right

Report this comment
#4) On December 04, 2009 at 7:01 AM, tfirst (27.55) wrote:

There is nothing you can do about global warming. No matter how much money you steal from the working man, you'll never stop the oceans from putting out more methane everyday than man emits carbon dioxide in a years time. Methane also has more effect as a global warming gas than co2. Another small fact you educated people fail to realize is co2 is heavier than the nitrogen oxygen mix we breath every day. How does all that co2 get up there? Do I deny there is global warming? No I don't but global warming is what has allowed man to flourish for the past 100,000 years. You won't stop it, change it, or even slow it down. If you educated people were as smart as you say you are, you'd spend your time and money developing new types of shingles, sunglasses, clothing, and change the way you build your houses as ways to ADAPT to the changing envirornment. Just as our fore fathers did by using animal skins to keep them warm when our earth was 90% covered with ice.

You're being brainwashed and set up for the New World Order thing or whatever they calll it now. Stop pointing fingers and placing blame because as man has done for the last million years or so, he will do again to survive our ever changing envirornment.

Report this comment
#5) On December 04, 2009 at 8:21 AM, devoish (97.51) wrote:

If you educated people were as smart as you say you are, you'd spend your time and money developing new types of shingles, sunglasses, clothing, and change the way you build your houses as ways to ADAPT to the changing envirornment.

 

Maybe I'll ADAPT by using things like conservation and renewable energy instead and buying new underwear.

"Never lose money" - Warren Buffet

Report this comment
#6) On December 04, 2009 at 10:02 AM, Option1307 (29.98) wrote:

I'm not a global warming denier per se, I just have a lot of questions about it and would like people to have actual discussions before we enact serious regulation/laws. That being said:

1)As more carbon dioxide is pumped into the atmosphere, the world gets warmer.

   Really? In a general sense yes, but hasn't there been significant temperature rises in the past before the industrial revolution ie before co2 emissions from man were common place?

2)  It would be very surprising if, somewhere among them, there wasn't a charlatan or two who over-hyped their work.

  Very true, there are bad/stupid people in every aspect of life. However, in regards to the leaked papers/emails, they represent the head of AGW front. They are not just a "charlatan or two", they are arguably the main force within the AGW community. No?

3) Are you prepared to take a 50-50 gamble on the habitability of the planet?

Ok this is ridiculous and you know it. Let's say that yes AGW is real for the sake of the argument. That doesn't mean the planet is going to be inhabitable by humans if we don't stop it. Yes, the average temperatures would increase a several degrees celcius, this doesn't mean catastrophe for all of man kind. A lot of credibility is lost IMO when people start talking about how global warming will destroy the planet. No it won't. It'll change it yes, but the world isn't going to end...

Report this comment
#7) On December 04, 2009 at 11:47 AM, whereaminow (28.96) wrote:

Hey let's just pull a number out of thin air, let's say 50-50, and watch the drones lick it up. Too funny.

David in Qatar

Report this comment
#8) On December 04, 2009 at 5:00 PM, fransgeraedts (99.92) wrote:

Nietzsche had his old man in the woods..and i have david from qatar...

Two points...just to underline them.. nothing new...

(1) Yes ..there are natural causes for long term heating and cooling ...and natural causes for short term heating and cooling...but..and that is what almost all scientists in this field have concluded..in addition to that ..there is now a man made cause ..a superimposed trend..greenhouse gasses heat the earth up more..then it would otherwise do..

(2) There is a family resemblance between the tone, the imagery and the type of reasoning of the global-warming denials on the one hand, and the marketfundamentalist positions on the other. What worries me about them are the deep seated anger and the layers of distrust that are evident within them.

I am beginning to think that creating pockets of trust... based on a common sense of the worth of our institutions, their inherent fragility and the need to uphold them ... could become very important..

I happen to think that

(1) Democracy is the best possible political system

(2) Governments are necessary and can function reasonably well creating and maintaining public goods that are in the common interest and protecting  fundamental rights of individuals.

(3) Science is the most rational enterprise ever created by man

(4) Free markets and the force of capital produce wealth and opportunity.

(5) Individual freedom has become the basis of civilisation.

(6) The pursuit of happiness will render the human animal less dangerous. 

(7)Just actions make the difference.

 

fransgeraedts

Report this comment
#9) On December 05, 2009 at 2:44 AM, lucas1985 (< 20) wrote:

@Option1307,
"1)As more carbon dioxide is pumped into the atmosphere, the world gets warmer.

  Really? In a general sense yes, but hasn't there been significant temperature rises in the past before the industrial revolution ie before co2 emissions from man were common place?

2)  It would be very surprising if, somewhere among them, there wasn't a charlatan or two who over-hyped their work.

  Very true, there are bad/stupid people in every aspect of life. However, in regards to the leaked papers/emails, they represent the head of AGW front. They are not just a "charlatan or two", they are arguably the main force within the AGW community. No?

3) Are you prepared to take a 50-50 gamble on the habitability of the planet?

Ok this is ridiculous and you know it. Let's say that yes AGW is real for the sake of the argument. That doesn't mean the planet is going to be inhabitable by humans if we don't stop it. Yes, the average temperatures would increase a several degrees celcius, this doesn't mean catastrophe for all of man kind. A lot of credibility is lost IMO when people start talking about how global warming will destroy the planet. No it won't. It'll change it yes, but the world isn't going to end.."


You asked smart questions so I'm going to answer them. Feel free to ask further questions because my explanations (specially to point one) may be way above your knowledge of physics, chemistry, etc:
1-
* "As more carbon dioxide is pumped into the atmosphere, the world gets warmer."
That's true in a ceteris paribus sense. The Earth is a closed system without significant amounts of matter (meteorites impacts and such events are insignificant compared to Earth's mass) added/subtracted to/from it and with four main energy sources: solar radiation (99.98% of total incoming energy), geothermal energy (e.g., radioactive decay of elements like uranium), tidal energy (frictions generated by interactions between gravitational fields) and waste heat (byproduct of fossil fuel consumption). But the planet can't accumulate energy because that would mean a constant rise in temperatures (more energy = higher temperatures).
There are 3 methods to dissipate heat energy away: convection, conduction and radiation. Earth can only radiate away heat because it's "floating" on a vacuum and vacuums impede the transfer of heat through convection or conduction. So the Earth radiates energy to the open space.
This is the concept of energy budget or energy balance, which is governed by the laws of thermodynamics (e.g., the conservation of energy) and the laws of radiative physics (Kirchhoff's law, Stefan–Boltzmann law, Planck's law). This is one of the physical bedrocks of climatology.




The other significant physical bedrock is the existence of the greenhouse effect which is necessary to explain the discrepancy between the observed global average temperature and the one calculated according to radiative laws. The radiative properties of trace gases (CO2, etc) were empirically discovered in the 19th century (Fourier, Tyndall, Arrhenius) are theoretically explained by quantum mechanics (it has to do with the bonds between atoms) and can be easily replicated in a lab.
So, let's assume that Earth is in thermal equilibrium (it never happens but it's a useful assumption), what would happen if we augment the incoming energy for whatever reason like increased solar output, changes in Earth's albedo (albedo is a measure of reflectivity, darker surfaces absorb more incoming energy than bright ones), changes in clouds, etc? The consequence would be a rise in temperatures until a new equilibrium between incoming and outgoing energy is reached (as per the Stefan–Boltzmann law, hotter bodies can emit more radiation and thus cool themselves more efficiently) What would happen if something (like the greenhouse effect) slowdowns the escape of outgoing radiation? Temperatures rise like in the previous case.
In summary: changes in solar output, clouds, albedo and the magnitude of the greenhouse effect alter the energy balance of the Earth and generate warming or cooling.

The most abundant GHGs are water vapor, CO2, CH4, N2O and some man-made compounds (halocarbons and SF6). Water vapor is responsible for most of the GH effect (about 2/3) but there are some reasons which explain why it doesn't determine long-term trends:
* Water vapor concentrations are widely variable in the short-term.
* Water vapor is washed away (clouds, precipitation) as soon as it enters the atmosphere (it's short lived).
* Warm air holds more water vapor. This is a positive feedback to the initial warming, whatever be its cause.
* There are dry and cold sectors of the atmosphere where the radiative effects of CO2 predominate.

So the main long-lived greenhouse gas is CO2. Remember that I told you that the quantity of matter is constant on Earth (discounting the small input of meteorites and the insignificant losses of atmospheric elements blown away by the solar wind)? Since the total amount of every element is finite, elements relevant to the biosphere must be recycled continuously. As you probably know, carbon is the chemical backbone of life and so it's recycled.



So we discover that atmospheric CO2 has a double function: it works as the atmospheric reservoir of carbon (indispensable to photosynthesis) and it also traps escaping infra-red radiation. This intersection creates interesting dynamics as we'll see later.

"but hasn't there been significant temperature rises in the past before the industrial revolution ie before co2 emissions from man were common place?"
Now we'll apply what we've learned about energy budgets, forcings, feedbacks and the carbon cycle. The evidence from the past shows a close correlation between temperature and atmospheric CO2, confirming what we guessed using previous knowledge (properties of CO2 and radiative laws)

What caused those CO2 rises in the past if there were no SUVs and coal plants? The story is roughly the following:
- We're in an ice age. Temperatures are 6 degrees lower and CO2 is at 180 ppm.
- Small perturbations in Earth's orbit and its axis tilt change the amount of solar radiation that reaches Earth's surface causing warming. Since this forcing is long-lived, it warms the Earth for centuries.
- As the ocean warms, it releases CO2 to the atmosphere (cold water holds more CO2 than warm water) thus enhancing the greenhouse effect. This is called the CO2 feedback on orbital forcing.
- As the planet warms with solar forcing and CO2 feedbacks, ice sheets retreat and that reduces albedo. Ice is very bright and reflects a lot of incoming radiation. As ice disappears, dark land is exposed, allowing more energy to reach Earth and be converted into heat.
- Deglaciation is now in full force, CO2 reaches 280 ppm and we're fully into an interglacial.
- The orbital forcing turns negative, initiating a slow cooling trend.
- Long-term processes (example) start to remove some of the atmospheric CO2, enhancing the cooling trend.
- Ice sheets grow, rising Earth's albedo and reflecting more energy back into space.
- Reglaciation is now in full force, CO2 falls to 180 ppm and we're back into an ice age.


2- CRU is one of the world's most important centers engaged in climate research but it's far from the "head of the AGW front" Each university with a big enough Earth science department is conducting research related to atmospheric processes, glaciology, oceanography, geochemistry, paleoclimatology, etc. There are also several government institutions dedicated to core fields related to climatology. NASA's GISS and NCAR are just two examples of those institutions in the US alone.

3- You have to understand that, in the last ice age, the global average temperature was only about 4-7 ºC cooler than today. So, if you live in the USA Mid West, a difference of only 5 ºC is the difference between a productive prairie with a continental temperate climate and an mile thick ice sheet. Amazing, isn't it? Now think what that same 5 ºC (but with a plus sign) can bring. It's understandable that you feel swayed by "doom and gloom" arguments and you're right: most of them are exaggerations or outright lies. It's a fact of life, wackos are everywhere. This doesn't mean that there's no reason for concern; a world just 3 degrees warmer is a very different world, a world not known since a long time ago (several million years) and a world where disruption to economic activity, human wellness and geopolitical stability is a likely certainty.

Report this comment
#10) On December 09, 2009 at 11:23 PM, Lordrobot (88.59) wrote:

 "Every day, I pine for the global warming deniers to be proved right. I loved the old world – of flying to beaches wherever we want, growing to the skies, and burning whatever source of energy came our way."  What is this... a quote from Al Gore from last week?

 I love it when snotty political jargon mixes with pseudo zience and produces idiots that must "believe" in global warming or be called morons. OK, I am a moron. I have two doctorate degrees and I got my physics degree at Cal Tech.

My contribution to global warming is that I decided that for CO2 to hold any heat at all, the surface temp of Mars would have to be proportionately much warmer than earth, taking into consderation the inverse square rule of the additional distance from the sun. Since Mars has an atmosphere composed of 25% Carbon Dioxide and no man made CO2, it stood to reason that the Mars surface temp in response to the solar radiation would have to be significantly hotter. Of course it wasn't. In fact, my numbers indicated to me that there was no difference thus, CO2 has to be eliminated as both a cause of increased surface temps and then as a function of man's activity on the planet. So I easily dismissed the global warming "believers" as crackpots and unschooled dopes. Some of my friends at MIT had also shown that the CO2 does not heat up an environment. Dare I suggest that if the sun warms the earth, the water vapor increaes and thus the solubility of CO2 which may actually block infrared from the sun. But who cares about science when you now have global warming religion and a very vengeful god and al gore the angel of the plagues upon thee.

I suppose to buy into this "religion" of global warming they must have a ritual if not I have thought one up. I suggest dropping alka seltzer in water, converting it to toxic Carbon Dioxide bubles and drinking it down rapidly and saying... "EGO have lost meus mens" Loosly translated it means I have lost my mind. You have now taken of the sacrament of global warming and can now preach that pegan non-believers are morons. Although you need not preach to me since I gladly accept the title moran from you. It seems only fitting somehow that politicians the intellectual bottom rung should call me a moron and a heritic... after all, I took math classes.

Please forgive my spell checker. Since I am a big moron anyway, I hope you warming idiots will preach tolerance for we ignorant sots, but I doubt it. Oh and your buddy Obama... yeah that's a real ringer for a genius. "Give the kid a breatholizer..." Sure Obama that will fix his asthma. ... and these guys call me a moron! LOL.

Oh and one other thing I would like to say. Anybody that tampers and hides data as has been done in the case of the IPPC documents has flushed their scientific careers down the toilet. Nobody in the field will ever respect them again. It is over. I would also like to state that as a fact the hotest year ever recorded in the last 100 years was 1934, not 1998.

 And by the way to Lucus 1985, loved the pictures and nice to talk to you again. Now you know why I took up bulldozer driving. Actually, the only reason I posted here was to join company with one of my fellow physics morons. "EGO have lost meus mens"

Report this comment
#11) On December 09, 2009 at 11:23 PM, Lordrobot (88.59) wrote:

 "Every day, I pine for the global warming deniers to be proved right. I loved the old world – of flying to beaches wherever we want, growing to the skies, and burning whatever source of energy came our way."  What is this... a quote from Al Gore from last week?

 I love it when snotty political jargon mixes with pseudo zience and produces idiots that must "believe" in global warming or be called morons. OK, I am a moron. I have two doctorate degrees and I got my physics degree at Cal Tech.

My contribution to global warming is that I decided that for CO2 to hold any heat at all, the surface temp of Mars would have to be proportionately much warmer than earth, taking into consderation the inverse square rule of the additional distance from the sun. Since Mars has an atmosphere composed of 25% Carbon Dioxide and no man made CO2, it stood to reason that the Mars surface temp in response to the solar radiation would have to be significantly hotter. Of course it wasn't. In fact, my numbers indicated to me that there was no difference thus, CO2 has to be eliminated as both a cause of increased surface temps and then as a function of man's activity on the planet. So I easily dismissed the global warming "believers" as crackpots and unschooled dopes. Some of my friends at MIT had also shown that the CO2 does not heat up an environment. Dare I suggest that if the sun warms the earth, the water vapor increaes and thus the solubility of CO2 which may actually block infrared from the sun. But who cares about science when you now have global warming religion and a very vengeful god and al gore the angel of the plagues upon thee.

I suppose to buy into this "religion" of global warming they must have a ritual if not I have thought one up. I suggest dropping alka seltzer in water, converting it to toxic Carbon Dioxide bubles and drinking it down rapidly and saying... "EGO have lost meus mens" Loosly translated it means I have lost my mind. You have now taken of the sacrament of global warming and can now preach that pegan non-believers are morons. Although you need not preach to me since I gladly accept the title moran from you. It seems only fitting somehow that politicians the intellectual bottom rung should call me a moron and a heritic... after all, I took math classes.

Please forgive my spell checker. Since I am a big moron anyway, I hope you warming idiots will preach tolerance for we ignorant sots, but I dout it.

Oh and one other thing I would like to say. Anybody that tampers and hides data as has been done in the case of the IPPC documents has flushed their scientific careers down the toilet. Nobody in the field will ever respect them again. It is over. I would also like to state that as a fact the hotest year ever recorded in the last 100 years was 1934, not 1998.

 And by the way to Lucus 1985, loved the pictures and nice to talk to you again. Now you know why I took up bulldozer driving. Actually, the only reason I posted here was to join company with one of my fellow physics morons. "EGO have lost meus mens"

Report this comment
#12) On December 10, 2009 at 12:13 AM, lucas1985 (< 20) wrote:

@Lordrobot,
"My contribution to global warming is that I decided that for CO2 to hold any heat at all, the surface temp of Mars would have to be proportionately much warmer than earth, taking into consderation the inverse square rule of the additional distance from the sun. Since Mars has an atmosphere composed of 25% Carbon Dioxide and no man made CO2, it stood to reason that the Mars surface temp in response to the solar radiation would have to be significantly hotter."
The atmosphere of Mars is very thin, so even if it has a proportional higher amount of CO2 it means little.
"The atmosphere of Mars is relatively thin, and the atmospheric pressure on the surface varies from around 30 Pa (0.03 kPa) on Olympus Mons's peak to over 1155 Pa (1.155 kPa) in the depths of Hellas Planitia, with a mean surface level pressure of 600 Pa (0.6 kPa, or 6 millibars, or 0.087 psi), compared to Earth's 101.3 kPa, and a total mass of 25 teratonnes, compared to Earth's 5148 teratonnes. However, the scale height of the atmosphere is about 11 km, somewhat higher than Earth's 7 km. The atmosphere on Mars consists of 95% carbon dioxide, 3% nitrogen, and 1.6% argon, and contains traces of oxygen, water, and methane, for a mean molecular weight of 43.34 g/mole"
Take a look at Venus and you'll find a runaway greenhouse effect
"The atmospheric pressure at the surface of Venus is about 92 times that of the Earth, similar to the pressure found 910 metres below the surface of the ocean. The atmosphere has a mass of 4.8 × 1020 kg, about 93 times the mass of the Earth's total atmosphere. The pressure found on Venus's surface is high enough that the carbon dioxide is technically no longer a gas, but a supercritical fluid. The density of the air at the surface is 67 kg/m3, which is 6.5% that of liquid water on Earth.
The large amount of CO2 in the atmosphere together with water vapor and sulfur dioxide create a strong greenhouse effect, trapping solar energy and raising the surface temperature to around 740 K (467°C), hotter than any other planet in the solar system, even that of Mercury despite being located further out from the Sun and receiving only 25% of the solar energy Mercury does. The average temperature on the surface is above the melting points of lead 600 K (327°C), tin 505 K (232°C), and zinc 693 K (420°C). The thick troposphere also makes the difference in temperature between the day and night side small"


"I have two doctorate degrees and I got my physics degree at Cal Tech."
Demand a refund. They failed to educate you.

Report this comment
#13) On December 29, 2009 at 3:52 PM, TigerPackFund (< 20) wrote:

frans-

We are trying to create a unique and successful group of 40 great minds on CAPS to highlight positive investment ideas. They each send us their 5 best stock ideas on a continuous basis, for an eventual total of 200 active picks, the CAPS game limit.  Our ultimate goal is to generate one simple, free webpage for investors all over the world to put on their browser Favorites list and find the best stock ideas, both bull and bear, you can access anywhere on the internet, any time of the day.

Please email your 5 strongest CAPS ideas to: tigerpackfund@yahoo.com so we can improve our experiment with your success-based smarts!  You can read the opening/first blog on TigerPackFund for more information.

-TigerPack

Report this comment

Featured Broker Partners


Advertisement