January 9, 2013

Chill out guys

It's good to know the Australian Bureau of Meteorology is already prepared for the greenhouse effect/global warming/climate change/extreme weather events, even if they are a tad trigger happy.

Yesterday the big boys added a lovely purple to the color palette, for signifying the extent of extreme hotness across our great brown island.  

Today they backed the truck-up to put purple back into storage.

But they're prepared, damn it!  

For bureaucrats, that's something. 

11 comments:

  1. The only surprise is that they are prepared. They didn't note a temperature, at the Rectory, of 34 deg at midnight on Tuesday on their map I would note. What a year for the air-con to seize like Homer Simpson's heart.

    Interesting this nibble...

    The reality is, it's being utterly simplistic to suggest that we have these fires because of climate change,'' he said. ''It's too simplistic to link one hot spell to climate change.

    So Warren Truss, "Climate Change" sceptic in yesterday's Herald. And, for as far as it goes, that's true. Perhaps Warren might also balance that with an admonition to all his fellow travelers who latch onto extreme weather events of the opposite order to claim there is no warming. Above average rainfall and floods along with an abnormal northern winter last year come to mind.

    Of far more interest is the fact that after a couple of tears wetter than average the country would seem to be returning to the pattern that, until not so long ago, had become normal: below to well below "average" precipitation. More worrisome is the bashful monsoon which is, as yet, to make an appearance. The far north is now below to "very much below" average rainfall for the past three months.

    A few cyclones might well set that to rights but it is a worrisome state of affairs that Darwin (and many areas of far north QLD) are displaying "lowest on record".

    The recent couple of wet years are rapidly appearing the exceptions they likely were.

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  2. ... Warren might also balance that with an admonition to all his fellow travelers who latch onto extreme weather events of the opposite order to claim there is no warming.

    Nooooo, not nearly that simple Father.

    The problem with Truss's statement is that for the longest time the believers have done exactly that: link one hot spell to climate change.

    Or one tsunami. Or two hurricanes.

    Hells bells, Gore's mis-truths partly hung on wild assertions - still believed after all these years - that hurricanes had increased in America, and that almost every individual weather event was the result of global warming, and that individual events were well and truly increasing in number.

    Wasn't true then, not true now.

    The data isn't there.

    Everyone should stop grasping at air, me thinks.

    If only the models could predict a damned thing, we would all accept that the science is settled.

    Not going to happen, yet.

    The models are inadequate. The predictions are nil.

    The wet years in Australia have always been the exception, just as, since the dawn of time, a warm climate has been the exception for Earth: ice ages have been the norm.

    The damns are still full, but desal plants have been built, so when the next drought comes, as sure as day follows night, we'll finally be prepared.

    There's no data for any weather events in Australia being more or less frequent. No data or information with which to make causal predictions.

    So far to go before we can hold hands and sing: "I'm a believer".

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  3. I disagree. I also disagree with your use of "the believers"; in other words they are somewhat religious. I'll admit my use of "fellow travelers" but you can hardly equate the two eh?

    The wet years in Australia have always been the exception, just as, since the dawn of time, a warm climate has been the exception for Earth: ice ages have been the norm.

    That first might be true; the evidence is contradictory. It seems that this place was much wetter in the past.

    The latter is a matter of record. It means little outside of the fact that cycles occur. Anyone who thinks these cycles will cease is quite stupid: they will not. Thus the natural cycles of warming and cooling will continue.

    And, so, the question is "how much do we contribute?" The answer to that is open. To those who say "nothing", I say "bullshit"; to those who claim everything the same. No rational person, with the industrial revolution as a historical backdrop, can claim that we've had nil effect. One only needs to travel through south Philadelphia to see the classic "smog" that is the result of industrialisation.

    Yes the Earth has always gone through these climate changes - and that's what they are, regardless of a chosen political viewpoint - and it will continue to do so. It will do this no matter that we argue whether it will or not or who (and or what) is responsible for it. It always has done.

    The damns are still full, but desal plants have been built, so when the next drought comes, as sure as day follows night, we'll finally be prepared.

    Your cynicism is noted.

    There's no data for any weather events in Australia being more or less frequent. No data or information with which to make causal predictions.

    To suggest that we've have nothing to do with the current warming is for the Bishop to tell the actress "I'll pull out before it's too hot..."

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  4. Oh dear....

    Never post whilst drinking a good red. I need to adjust the above Caz!!

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  5. No planet can accommodate 7 billion humans, with all they do and all they use, without having an effect on stuff, including using up all the oil, for example, or an excess of plastic cluttering up the oceans, or depleting to Ozone (until we figured out what was causing it, so we stopped).

    Don't need to be a scientist to know that destroying the Amazon is insanity, and has irreversible bio-diversity and atmospheric impacts - cannot ever be undone.

    Don't need to even think much about it for these things to be self evident.

    All don't need to think much about it for the bi-decade predictions of Armageddon - dating back for centuries, but really coming into their own during the 20th and 21 century - has so far never come true.

    Science has debased itself by becoming a political lapdog, sullying the scientific method, to service the needy moral psychology of people who want humans to be punished, to feel guilt, to feel ... what? Don't know that they're after, but it's a sick kind of morality.

    Offended by the "believer" term?

    Come on Father: not nearly as morally repugnant as the "denier" label, which is so well entrenched that it's no longer questioned. A lazy and unintelligent short cut to cutting down anyone who dares question policy, a quick and dirty way to shut down discussion (and render science irrelevant), a quick and dirty way to silence debate, to enforce conformance.

    So yes, I use the word "believer" flippantly (without the vile morality of those who accuse people of being "deniers") and deliberately. What else to do when "denier" is treated as an ordinary and correct label of dismissal?

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  6. Cyniscism?

    No.

    But I will always, always, always, be deeply skeptical when politicians and lobbyists demand that I believe without evidence, ignore the scientific method, and cost the world trillions of dollars, all for nothing, yet, won't spend a few billion to save every child on the planet, to save lives of adults in Africa ...

    A thousand lives saved in 100 years? Trillions of dollars. Same millions of lives today? Billions.

    The new religion will spend trillions instead.

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  7. Before we go any further, I should correct the above...

    The damns are still full, but desal plants have been built, so when the next drought comes, as sure as day follows night, we'll finally be prepared.

    Your cynicism is noted.

    To suggest that we've have nothing to do with the current warming is for the Bishop to tell the actress "I'll pull out before it's too hot..." And, on a final note, the dams are far from "full" in NSW. Whether one believes in a glass half full or empty matters not one whit to storage levels. March last year Burrendong was 130%; it is now 53%. March last year Burrinjuck was 110%; it is now 51%. I could go on. Dams like Burrinjuck are the lifeblood of the Riverina. It will not fill again soon on current weather patterns.

    I'm well aware you've a particular stance on this "warming issue"; it is one of your pet political footballs. You might have noticed that, like religion, I haven't chosen (until tonight) to kick it around with you.

    I take all said above as standard (rainforest destruction, et al): we both know all that. I disagree that "science" has debased itself. Evidence is evidence: who pays for its interpretation corrupts. Who employs the mouthpieces corrupts. True scientists have constantly called for the removal of politicians from the process. This, of course, can never happen for barrows must be pushed and those barrows carry funding."Science" was never done for science' sake. Ask those with Openheimer.

    My own view is that the evidence is incontrovertible: the Earth is warming. This is, as we have noted, nothing new. The only question, as I raised earlier, is how much we contribute to that. I believe that whilst the Earth would continue to warm without us, it warms just that little bit more with us. How little?

    Like iJustin, I'll come back in a generation or two and let you know.

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  8. Arrrhhh.

    Now what have you NSW people been doing with all the water? Where's it gone? You can't water down that many driveways in only a year, it's just not physically possible.

    Alas, our scientific community is providing the same type of evidence that was provided to show that we should have run out of food fifty years ago, that over population would have killed-off Earth by now, that a new ice age was on it's way ... should have arrived by now.

    Father, you know all of the failed, and entirely scientifically based, predictions as well or better than I do.

    All of them, by coinky-dink, are Armageddon scenarios, all predicated on the failings of human kind, all determined that only the most extreme deprivations, self flagellation and admission of moral culpability will cure ... insert global natural catastrophe of choice.

    The extreme weather event problem is one of what to do: adapt or attempt to reverse the temperature in 100 years time. That's the scientific, political, policy, social and economic question, not the minutiae of this or that degree of culpability. THAT'S the ethical question.

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  9. Well, that's science: produce the evidence based hypothesis and proceed to affirm or destroy it. Many fall and possibly so too will this. I do find the - til now - failure of the monsoon most concerning; an entire ecosystem depends upon it. The Met Bureau has the monsoon trough stubbornly north of Australia and it has been all summer. Perhaps if decided to drift south some of this interminable heat might be dealt away with.

    Me, I've about had it with Local Warming. It is impossibly hot in this bloody city and the Rectory, sans air-con, is a pizza oven. Time for the pool.


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  10. The Caz Mansion also suffers from Local Warming, sans air-con (or "free air" as the car sales adverts spruik).

    Despite the gasping about a scorcher summer, and Victoria has had a few days of such, the fact is, the weather here has been one-off hot days, surrounded by mild or even cool days (20 today, not expecting a day in the 30s until Thursday, and only the one).

    Not close to being the hottest summer in my memory, and not doing too bad in the city, compared to the outer reaches of the state, and the suffering of other states - eg, Kath roasting over there in Perth.

    Unfortunately, our scientists have not developed anything remotely well-established for supporting or refuting the hypothesis, hence the absurd insult to my - and your - intelligence in prematurely announcing and continuing to insist that the science is locked-in, a done deal.

    There are no models with genuine predictive powers, nor any demonstrating causal links (as opposed to correlation, the second lacking, in any case).

    You don't, maybe sometimes, Father, marvel that the politicians, the faithful, the scientists, and the ignorant, can all nod, furrow their brows, berate (everyone), and weep, and wring their hands, about confident assertions of temperatures 100 years hence, and yet, none of those same people can predict or assert with any confidence, the temperatures in two, three or five years? Because I know I marvel. Just as I marvel at the persistent confidence, and at the dismissal of any need to demonstrate such wondrous accuracy and causal models for the recent past and the short term future.

    I read about that hovering monsoon. Skittish?

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  11. Anonymous12:11 AM

    thanks for share.

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