Open Thread And Cartoon Of The Week

A cyber-penny for your thoughts.

Fueling the Addiction

A cartoon image

By Ann Telnaes, the Cartoonist Group


32 Responses to Open Thread And Cartoon Of The Week

  1. Will Fox says:

    This seems almost unbelievable, but there’s a highway being planned for the Serengeti:

    In addition to massive loss of wildlife, scientists believe the area could become a net source of carbon dioxide if this goes ahead.

  2. ColoradoBob says:

    Joe Bastardi found a cherry

    Neven picks a fight :

    You are making rookie mistakes that are misleading people into thinking that there’s nothing wrong up north. But what’s going on in the Arctic is dead serious, it could be very dangerous to food security and the future carbon cycle. You as a weather specialist should be able to appreciate that even more than others.

    So either start telling the truth about the Arctic and its sea ice or shut up.

  3. ColoradoBob says:

    Russian scientists have discovered spots in the Arctic Ocean where mass emissions of methane can be observed.
    According to the press-service of the expedition aboard The Viktor Buinitsky research vessel, the diameter of some of the ‘methane fields’ found in the northern part of the Laptev Sea exceeds 1 kilometre.

    The new discoveries will help to understand the mechanism of global warming on Earth, experts believe. In their opinion, emissions of methane could have catastrophic consequences for the climate of our planet.

  4. Joan Savage says:

    The picture accompanying the RU report has what looks like a vast plaque of flat foam, but the picture isn’t labeled or credited. I wonder how much weight to give it.

  5. ColoradoBob says:

    Russian scientists have discovered spots in the Arctic Ocean where mass emissions of methane can be observed.
    According to the press-service of the expedition aboard The Viktor Buinitsky research vessel, the diameter of some of the ‘methane fields’ found in the northern part of the Laptev Sea exceeds 1 kilometre.
    The new discoveries will help to understand the mechanism of global warming on Earth, experts believe. In their opinion, emissions of methane could have catastrophic consequences for the climate of our planet.

    The latest position of The Viktor Buinitsky –

    found in the northern part of the Laptev Sea –

    More than half of the sea (53%) rests on a continental shelf with the average depths below 50 meters (160 ft), and the areas south from 76°N are shallower than 25 m.[6] In the northern part, the sea bottom sharply drops to the ocean floor with the depth of the order of 1 kilometer (0.62 mi) (22% of the sea area). There it is covered with silt, which is mixed with ice in the shallow areas.[1][2][3]

  6. catman306 says:

    Here’s a suggestion for someone who could do this sort of thing:

    Design and compose crossword puzzles with a climate change theme.

    Pass it on! Every little bit of communication about our dire straits of our climate to the general public can only help.

  7. Jack Burton says:

    The Russian National Academy of Science announced this methane plume discovery many months back. They expressed SHOCK at the growth in the size of these formerly small plumes. I remember them saying some were over a kilometer in width.
    Russian science has been reluctant to get to involved in global warming due to Russia being dependent on fossil fuel export economically.
    I take their recent reports very seriously. If these plumes grew from a few meters across to over a kilometer across, how much bigger will they get? The earlier report also says they have NOT explored the extent of the plumes, meaning there may be more than we have yet seen.
    This is serious stuff, this is what nightmare scenarios are made of.

  8. Jack Burton says:

    I’ve run a small experiment on several economic blogs I regularly read. When a weather or climate story is posted, the comments section explodes with climate science deniers. On a few occasions I have stuck it out and refused to back down. I took on dozens of posters and refuted in detail every word they said. It took time, but I wanted to see what would happen if they could not bully the realists into silence.
    Needless to say, I have now been called every foul name in the book. Funny really, when confronted, they fall back on swearing at me. I have NEVER, EVER been confronted with a denier argument that holds water, they are all demonstrably refutable, and many obviously are simply denier talking points put out by fossil fuel company PR firms in the right wing media.
    I am not going to waste time doing this anymore, but as a sort of test run of standing up to deniers, it was very instructive.

  9. ColoradoBob says:

    The R.V. Polarstem has been at sea since August 2, hunting Methane, Arctic Change, Arctic Ice . They have a submersible on board .
    The plot of the expedition so far :

  10. ColoradoBob says:

    JB –
    This is current stuff , the ship is still at sea . The latest position of The Viktor Buinitsky –

  11. Will Fox says:

    Indeed, it’s very depressing. I encounter these morons all the time (YouTube is full of them) and it’s like arguing with young earth Creationists. It doesn’t matter how much evidence you present – they simply will not accept it. Their willful ignorance, double standards and hypocrisy are frankly sickening. It’s almost like they WANT to destroy the biosphere.

  12. Paul Klinkman says:

    On second thought, the excess radioactivity in fracking waste (Wednesday’s Columbus Dispatch) isn’t really as big a story as I initially thought. It just sounds scary. If a company midnight dumps liquid fracking waste, or if a company sprays it all over the streets in a poorer part of town, the radon will simply dissipate into the atmosphere. The toxic chems are still the big problem.

  13. catman306 says:

    I refer them to Skeptical Science’s list of 173 climate change deniers talking points. If I feel like it I’ll get them directly to the numbered talking point. Time is running out. Don’t waste it on fools.

  14. DRT says:

    @ColoradoBob and ‘spots in the Arctic Ocean where mass emissions of methane can be observed’

    I don’t know how to deal with this and all the other ongoing reports of really bad s$#t happening like the looming ice free arctic. Let’s presume for now that mass emissions of methane in the Arctic are a new and recent phenomenon from a geologic perspective. If we lived in a rational world, what should the reaction be, start massive geo-engineering to cool the Arctic, immediately ban fossil fuel use? Even if its a good idea, I can’t make that happen so I do my bit by sealing and insulating my house, eating little meat, driving a decent mileage vehicle…but I’m still driving…and my actions don’t even register as noise relative to the scale of the problem. I could quit my job and go camp out in front of congress or the White House in protest, but that would have no effect either. So I go on with life, leaving my carbon footprint behind me, doing a job that essentially just helps companies sell more stuff, and worry.

  15. CW says:

    So the fed is going to spend $40B a month to stimulate the economy. Indefinitely. By buying up mortgage securities.

    How much climate-fighting action could this buy instead? How many clean tech jobs could this create? How far off oil could we go with this money? How much smarter, habitable and sustainable could our cities be with $40B/mo.? How many companies and sectors could establish global leadership with this money? What does it say about our politics, our institutions and our leaders if they can commit to this level of spending for mortgage securities with relative ease but not for the types of things just alluded to?

  16. ColoradoBob says:

    Floods 2012: Millions rendered homeless in Balochistan, Sindh

    Flash floods triggered by torrential rains have rendered around one million people in Balochistan homeless over the past week, without any relief in sight.
    An aerial view of the worst-affected districts of the province presents a gloomy picture of urban and rural areas in the province, which have been submerged four to five feet deep in water. Crops and houses have been either partially or completely damaged by gushing hill torrents.

  17. ColoradoBob says:

    Four torrents – including Wadore and Sori Lund – discharged thousands of cusecs of water causing breaches in canals. The torrents are said to be far heavier compared to the epic floods of 2010.

    Wadore torrent, for instance, released 97,000 cusecs of water in 2010, while this time around it discharged around 0.15 million cusecs of water.

  18. Tim says:

    Jim Pettit posted a terrific rhyme on this that he has given his permission to repost. Enjoy!

    Ode to the Apoplectic Skeptic
    by Jim Pettit

    Joe Bastardi found a cherry,
    Making Joey very merry.
    And that cherry that he found
    Was quickly picked, then passed around.
    And skeptics, in their desperation,
    Danced and screamed in jubilation,
    For that cherry, they were told,
    Was evidence of coming cold.
    “The ice is back!” Bastardi’s shout.
    “It’s cooling fast, without a doubt!
    And someday, right around the bend,
    This ‘Global Warming’ lie will end!
    And ice will come in lofty sheets
    While wooly mammoths roam the streets!
    And best of all–I promise you–
    We’ll hear no more of CO2!”

    But poor Bastardi–foolish chap–
    Had never learned to read a map.
    Through ignorance and wishful thinking,
    Joe had erred: the ice was shrinking.
    Yes, this climate malcontent
    Was unaware that ice extent
    Continued melting, never ceasing;
    Arctic ice was still decreasing.
    The question, then: should Joe admit
    His Arctic knowledge deficit?
    Or should he sing his normal song,
    Proclaiming that those maps were wrong?
    Alas, he did what “skeptics” do:
    He wrote a bunch–sans peer review–
    That scientists had missed, not he…
    Then climbed back up his cherry tree.

  19. ColoradoBob says:

    DRT –
    It’s a grim business , last night I watched a PBS show on the “Born Free” lions , and the story of their rescuers .

    That was 1965 , the lion population in African has fallen by 90% since that film was made.

    I call it the “Crash of Nature “.

  20. fj says:

    “The Price of Inequality,” by Joseph Stiglitz is a great analysis of the degradation of human capital and potential paths to large scale climate change solutions.

    . . . in particular . . .

    Profound integration with natural capital where human capital is the most important component.

  21. If the photo is of actual methane coming to the surface (and that is a big if), the left side shows the “pancake” sea ice or smaller pieces and the right side may be showing the bubbling at the surface.

  22. Shakhova left a week or so ago for the Laptev, and she wrote that she will not be back until October.

  23. Merrelyn Emery says:

    It illustrates our maladaptive separation of ‘economy’ and ecosystem. But look on the bright side – the funny money probably won’t work and as the industrial culture crashes, so will emissions. It might now be our only hope, ME

  24. fj says:

    $3.99 eBook of “The Price of Inequality” from Google Play

  25. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    Giving the likes of the eponymous Bastardi the oxygen of recognition is a real mistake, in my opinion. Argument is pointless, as he has no intention, nor capacity I assume, to learn from error, and is ideologically dedicated to spreading disinformation. And, I believe that it’s a real mistake to assume that this type possesses a conscience or sense of shame.

  26. David B. Benson says:

    US$40 B/month = US$480 B/year. About 1/2 of enough to mitigate climate change.

    A recent TNYT article is based on the pr from an Institute of Medicine (NAS/NRC) report stating that tthe US simply wastes US$750 B/year on medical/hospital practices. That waste alone in about the right size to tackle climate change.

  27. Troubadour says:

    I’m wondering why the communication to media/public from Shakhova et al is so sloppy, regarding that they are doing these really interesting research trips?

    It’s as if they are trying to do their research in secrecy, almost…

    List of publications out of date, no mentions of research trips, no pdf’s of published papers online, no info on upcoming publications…

    Data from last autumn’s research was supposed to be released in spring 2012, I have not seen anything published…

  28. fj says:

    Prizewinning global-warming fighter unbowed by climate of cynicism #climatechange

  29. Lewis Cleverdon says:

    Given that last year’s hastily arranged urgent research trip was a joint Russian-American venture,
    the almost complete lack of published information on its findings one year later
    imply the probability of an unusual degree of bi-lateral censorship –
    and that has to include the censorship of the American scientists on the research vessel.

    So what exactly are the findings that the authorities believe warrant such a policy ? And where are the scientists willing to speak out on behalf of science ?



  30. Belgrave says:

    I’ve also been wondering where is the Semiletov, Shakhova, et al. publication(s) on their alarming report of methane emissions last year. All I’ve found recently is a short report on a Russian news website (which seems to have disappeared now – at least I couldn’t find it again) just before they set off on the present expedition. It mostly consisted of an interview with Semiletov in which he sounded uncharacteristically upbeat – talking optimistically about the opportunities for mining methane hydrates.

    I too suspect censorship – the Pussy Riot affair has shown us how Putin deals with people who point out inconvenient truths. And it’s not really necessary for the University of Alaska people to have been silenced directly – just that they know how difficult life will be made for their Russian colleagues if they speak up. Or am I turning into a paranoid conspiracy theorist?

  31. Raul M. says:

    mining methane hydrates- Some experience in mining methane gas and its reformation to frozen material was gained with the beyond pollution spill. If the gas is leaking from the ground in one place then it probably is connected with the other leaks in a field. Guessing that melting underground would add pressure to the field- true or not? Then a melting influence at one location would have what effect on the entire upper surface of the hydrate field- would a melting at one point cause enough free gas to bubble the edge of the hydrate and ground interface?
    Anyway would the gas come out as a concentrated source near the melting influence or just refreeze as it adds to the mass of the interface of hydrate and ground at other locations?

  32. Chris Winter says:

    I have seen that too, Jack. And then there’s the projection, where they accuse you of name-calling and using foul language.

    The lack of self-awareness is mind-boggling.