Friday, September 28, 2012

New Climate Catastrophe Policy: Triage - 8

An average of bad conditions is still bad
On this date, in 2009, Dredd Blog began this series which has been exploring the various and sundry government contingency plans for handling the ongoing damage caused by global warming induced climate change.

Regular readers know that it did not take long to discover that government policy is basically "catastrophic damage from global warming is something that will happen in the future", noting that they sometimes even tend to use the term "in the next century" to try to distance themselves from the subject.

All too often their plans are summed up in significant part by the infamous words of Bush II: "you're doin' a heckuva job Brownie".

In a gulf not far away from Brownie's heckuva job, the Deepwater Horizon catastrophic oil spill became the next episode of government heckuva job goings on, brought to us by BP ("British Petroleum", "Big Pollution", "Biggest Polluter", "Bad People", etc.) in the form of another catastrophe that keeps on killing and intoxicating the environment, and will continue to do so for years to come.

Anyway, the following text is the first post in this series, re-posted today to show that conditions are the same as they were then, which is, the condition of getting worse all the time:

The new approach to alarming climate change and the growing spectre of many increasing national and international catastrophies is beginning to look more and more like triage.

The definition of triage is:
tri⋅age –noun

1. the process of sorting victims, as of a battle or disaster, to determine medical priority in order to increase the number of survivors.

2. the determination of priorities for action in an emergency.
(Dictionary). It may be that governments are now convinced by scientists that it is too late to stop the catastrophe.

So they will develop massive triage and massive burial procedures? How enlightened is that? Notes from the Bangkok conference going on this week have indicated:
Though world leaders have trumpeted helpful tips in dealing with climate change, doubt remains on whether delegates will be able to translate them into formal text on a new climate pact during talks in Bangkok starting Monday.
(Jakarta Post). There is a dazed and confused element to the way governments are handling the spectre of catastrophe. This does not bode well for long term prospects of the human species, therefore a change in government ideology is critical.

Avoidance of the catastrophes that are destroying the oceans before our very eyes, and killing 5 million people annually NOW, is not a serious political issue in the current election cycle.

Triage (e.g. "austerity" and loss of paid-for insurance "entitlements") is the talk of W town, footstool of the 1%, and home of the W direction.

It is what they call a real campaign issue.

The next post in this series is here, the previous post in this series is here.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

New Continent Found - Garbage Gyre II - 3

Ocean Garbage Kills Whales
No sooner does Dredd Blog get a post out which people seem to be quite interested in, than along comes new research showing it to be worse than our "pessimistic" (a.k.a. telling it like it is) previous post had indicated.

This series is all about floating continents of garbage that have been ceremonially and serially dumped into our once beautiful oceans, yes, having been dumped there ever since civilization became "sophisticated".

To review a bit, Dredd Blog began this series thusly: Garbage Garbage Garbage (3/2009),  then we ran across:
"We're afraid at what we're going to find in the South Gyre, but we've got to go there," said Tony Haymet, director of the Scripps Institution.

Only humans are to blame for ocean debris, Goldstein said. In a blog entry posted a day before the science ship arrived in Newport, Ore., she wrote the research showed her the consequences of humanity's footprint on nature.

"Seeing that influence just floating out here in the middle of nowhere makes our power painfully obvious, and the consequences of the industrial age plain," she wrote. "It's not a pretty sight."
(New Continent Found - Garbage Gyre II, 8/2009). Not stopping there, we were determined to leave no piece of plastic garbage unturned (The Gyres, The America's Cup & Medals, 2/2010, and Ecocide: Evidence Of Toxins of Power, 2/2010).

The oceanographer who was quoted above as saying there was a fear "at what we're going to find in the South Gyre, but we've got to go there" need not wonder any more, because a recent survey of the "pristine Southern Ocean" reveals the "sophistication" of human civilization once again:
The first traces of plastic debris have been found in what was thought to be the pristine environment of the Southern Ocean, according to a study released in London by the French scientific research vessel Tara.

The finding comes following a two-and-a-half-year, 70,000-mile voyage by the schooner across the Atlantic, Pacific, Antarctic and Indian Oceans, to investigate marine ecosystems and biodiversity under climate change.

"We had always assumed that this was a pristine environment, very little touched by human beings," said Chris Bowler, scientific co-ordinator of Tara Oceans. "The fact that we found these plastics is a sign that the reach of human beings is truly planetary in scale."

Samples taken from four different stations at locations in the Southern Ocean and Antarctica revealed traces of plastic at a measure of approximately 50,000 fragments per square kilometre — a rate comparable to the global average.
(Garbage Reaches Southern Ocean, emphasis added). Global garbage change is a new trophy for MOMCOM.

The next post in this series is here, the previous post is here.

Pete Seeger sings the song "Garbage", written by Bill Steele, ©1969, below. It has, among others, the prescient lyric "we're filling up the sea with garbage".

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Perfect Storm: New Global Ground Zero

Potential source for an Arctic Tsunami
Global warming induced climate change has caused and is causing changes to lifestyle around the globe.

This includes activities from extracting the pollution generating oil from under the Earth, to burning it and thereby releasing green house gases into the atmosphere.

When those green house gases then block release of heat back into space they thereby cause the heating up of the globe as more and more heat is trapped to disturb climate patterns in all nations.

The Dredd Blog System, for some time now, has mentioned that the flora and fauna are on the move:
Vegetation around the world is on the move, and climate change is the culprit, according to a new analysis of global vegetation shifts led by a University of California, Berkeley, ecologist in collaboration with researchers from the U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service.

In a paper published June 7 in the journal Global Ecology and Biogeography, researchers present evidence that over the past century, vegetation has been gradually moving toward the poles and up mountain slopes, where temperatures are cooler, as well as toward the equator, where rainfall is greater.
(Ents & The Entities Become Nomadic). The same is now also true for the undersea creatures as it is for land inhabiting species:
Narsaq’s largest employer, a shrimp factory, closed a few years ago after the crustaceans fled north to cooler water. Where once there were eight commercial fishing vessels, there is now one.

As a result, the population here, one of southern Greenland’s major towns, has been halved to 1,500 in just a decade. Suicides are up.
(Greenland Changing Due To Warming). The phenomenon is developing at coastal areas of human civilization too:
Mann says the Pacific islands, which are only 4.6 metres above sea level at their highest point, are facing the imminent prospect of flooding, with salt water intrusion destroying fresh water supplies and increased erosion.

Suggesting evacuations would accelerate a change in public consciousness around the issue of climate change, he said: "Thousands of years of culture is at risk of disappearing as the populations of vulnerable island states have no place to go.

"For these people, current sea levels are already representative of dangerous anthropogenic interference because they will lose their world far before the rest of us suffer.

"I think it is an example, one of a number, where the impacts are playing out in real time. It is not an abstract prediction about the future or about far off exotic creatures like polar bears. We are talking about people potentially having to evacuate from places like Tvulu or the Arctic's Kivalina, another low lying island which is already feeling the detrimental impacts of sea level rise."
(Guardian). Perhaps that could also mean mass migrations caused by food and water scarcity:
The Persian Gulf, Libya, and Pakistan are at high risk of food insecurity in coming decades because climate change and ocean acidification are destroying fisheries, according to a report released on Monday.

The report from the campaign group Oceana warns of growing food insecurity, especially for poorer people, from the Faroe Islands in the North Atlantic to the Cook Islands in the South Pacific, Eritrea, Guyana, Indonesia, Kuwait and Singapore.

Some of the countries at highest risk were in oil-rich – and politically volatile – regions.

"The Persian Gulf is actually expected to be one of the hardest-hit regions. In terms of fish catch they are supposed to lose over 50% of their fisheries," said Matt Huelsenbeck, an Oceana marine scientist and author of the report.

The report put Iran, Libya, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates among the top 10 countries most at risk because of the decline in fish stocks due to climate change.
(Food Scarcity Mid-East, emphasis added). There are new dangers from volatile conditions also beginning to appear, from permafrost melt to undersea tsunami events:
Another important question is how all this methane gas affects the stability of the seafloor. When methane hydrates warm up and release methane gas, the gas takes up much more space than the solid hydrate, putting pressure on the surrounding sediments. Similarly, the decomposition of either methane hydrate or permafrost can reduce the mechanical strength of the surrounding sediment. Either process could make the seafloor more susceptible to submarine landslides.

Undersea landslides are common along the continental slope of the Beaufort Sea, but researchers do not yet know when or how they form. However, decomposing methane hydrates are believed to have triggered major landslides in other deep-sea areas. Such landslides could potentially destabilize oil platforms, pipelines, or other equipment on the seafloor, and have the potential to generate tsunamis.
(Tsunami / Hydrate Release / Methane, emphasis added). Another team that has been researching the Arctic for decades had some stern observations too:
Dramatic and unprecedented plumes of methane - a greenhouse gas 20 times more potent than carbon dioxide - have been seen bubbling to the surface of the Arctic Ocean by scientists undertaking an extensive survey of the region. The scale and volume of the methane release has astonished the head of the Russian research team who has been surveying the seabed of the East Siberian Arctic Shelf off northern Russia for nearly 20 years. In an exclusive interview with The Independent, Igor Semiletov of the International Arctic Research Centre at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, who led the 8th joint US-Russia cruise of the East Siberian Arctic seas, said that he has never before witnessed the scale and force of the methane being released from beneath the Arctic seabed.
(New Climate Catastrophe Policy: Triage - 5) One has to wonder sometimes why the 18th Century mentality that is running all things mythical believes this is the economical way to do things:
More than 100 million people will die and global economic growth will be cut by 3.2 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) by 2030 if the world fails to tackle climate change, a report commissioned by 20 governments said on Wednesday.
It calculated that five million deaths occur each year from air pollution, hunger and disease as a result of climate change and carbon-intensive economies, and that toll would likely rise to six million a year by 2030 if current patterns of fossil fuel use continue.
(Reuters, emphasis added). The equivalent of one holocaust dying each year now is not something to procrastinate about any longer, this is about the end of civilization as we know it.

It appears that the human species on this planet is not the brightest bulb in the celestial chandelier.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Textbooks Take Another Hit - 2

The books they are a changin'
On about this date in 2009 we looked at the subject of textbooks.

This is an issue that seems to never get old, so today we revisit that subject.

The notion that the text in textbooks is sacrosanct is often shown to be inaccurate.

In this and other series Dredd Blog has focused on the impact that constant change in scientific discoveries has had on the textbook industry.

For one thing, the change that new scientific discovery does, when it shows previous science to have been wrong or inaccurate, works as a sort of planned obsolescence which works to the benefit of businesses dealing in textbooks.

That is because new product generally means new profit and happier stockholders.

However, it does not work as well to those of us who learned that "textbook knowledge", struggling perhaps to memorize the material for a test, then after all that work, we end up finding out that the information is no longer valid.

I bring these things up because it is obvious that some politicians think that what they learned from textbooks is cast in concrete, never to change.

Thus, when they do this they can come across as antiquated, with perhaps an 18th Century comprehension.

Before we go into that 2009 post, let's notice an example of some new scientific discoveries that will change the textbooks containing information about the planet Mercury:
Mercury has a surface unlike any other planet's in the solar system, instead resembling a rare type of meteorite, researchers say.
The finding, based on an analysis of data from NASA's Messenger probe, sheds new light on the formation and history of the mysterious innermost planet, scientists add.

Mercury, the smallest planet in the solar system, is also one of the least understood ...
(New Mercury Data). The piece goes on to point out how different the planet is compared to original hypotheses formulated and put into textbooks before the Messenger Spacecraft began to orbit Mercury and to study it closely.

Here is the post from 2009:

If you own stock in textbook companies you will like this.

But if you are a student who has put in countless hours memorizing scientific textbooks to enhance your knowledge and to pass those gruelling tests, you may not like this latest discovery.

Such students are not alone, because Dredd Blog puts out a lot of posts about how textbooks have to be thrown away far too often because of lax scientific methods, or because scientific methods are supplanted by propaganda.

This scientific propaganda happens in government and in private educational systems as well. Notice one of the latest textbook shredding episodes:
In a discovery that promises to reinvigorate studies of the moon and potentially upend thinking of how it originated, scientists at Brown University and other research institutions have found evidence of water molecules on the surface of the moon.
(Science Daily, emphasis added). Water on the moon? What do you have water on the brain?

An Indian rocket put a craft in orbit around the Moon which had instruments on board that have now detected water molecules on the surface of the Moon, most prominently at the poles where no sunlight ever shines.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Is A New Age Of Pressure Upon Us? - 4

Red-neck Peer-Reviewed Scientific Paper
In this series we have been noticing some of the esoteric aspects of global warming induced climate change, for example, earthquakes and volcanoes.

Which is yet another aspect of reality missed by the simpletons of denialism.

Those who do not yet realize the size and viciousness of the tiger that polluting civilization has by the tail, the clueless media bozos of the mass media who ridicule not only the notion that earthquakes and volcanoes can be linked to climate change,  but who also ridicule even the non-esoteric aspects of the science.

This even though hundreds of thousands have already been killed and hundreds of billions of dollars in damage and destruction has already been done.

Meanwhile the simpleton deniers think global warming understanding is a simple matter of reading the Bible, perhaps prophecy, conveniently forgetting that preachers are not the source of scientific prophesy, scientists are.

We have pointed out one of the scientists, Dr. McGuire, who foretold earthquakes and volcanoes in the context of global warming, as well as pointing out time and again that he has already been proven correct:
"In places like Iceland, for example, where you have the Eyjafjallajökull ice sheet, which wouldn't survive [global warming], and you've got lots of volcanoes under that, the unloading effect can trigger eruptions," McGuire said.

With the changing dynamics in the crust, faults could also be destabilized, which could bring a whole host of other problems.

"It's not just the volcanoes. Obviously if you load and unload active faults, then you're liable to trigger earthquakes," McGuire told LiveScience, noting that there is ample evidence for this association in past climate change events.
(Global Warming & Volcanic Eruptions). That was a quote from a scientist, a geologist, who said, 2.5 years before it happened, that the Eyjafjallajökull volcano would erupt when the ice melted to become too thin to keep a lid on that volcano (European aircraft were grounded when the volcano erupted a couple of years later).

Dr. McGuire went on to say "if you load and unload active faults, then you're liable to trigger earthquakes", meaning that as the ice sheets melt, causing the sea level to rise, the weight of oceans on the Earth's crust will be redistributed around the globe, which will ease up on some faults, but push down harder on other faults.

Today, we can detect swarms of small earthquakes felt by seismographs around the globe every day, some of them generated from yet another esoteric global warming induced climate change phenomenon:
One of the more amazing facts about the ongoing destruction of the Greenland ice sheet is that it is producing earthquakes that can be detected worldwide. Now, fresh evidence is at hand to show that these “ice quakes” are spreading to previously quiescent parts of Greenland. We’re only in September, but it seems increasingly likely that 2012 will set a record for such quakes.
(Iceland's Ice Sheet Earthquakes, emphasis added). This is a type of small earthquake caused by glaciers "calving" massive chunks of ice, impacting the surface, and entering the sea to become icebergs.

In the previous post in this series we quoted the scientist who took the kid gloves off to explain the seriousness of global pollution issues to us, expecting us to be mature enough to handle it:
The bottom line is that through our climate-changing activities we are loading the dice in favour of escalating geological havoc at a time when we can most do without it. Unless there is a dramatic and completely unexpected turnaround in the way in which the human race manages itself and the planet, then long-term prospects for our civilisation look increasingly grim.
(Is A New Age Of Pressure Upon Us? - 3). In other words there is more than meets the eye, so we had better get busy changing our ways of pollution or the results will certainly change us in ways we will not find to be pleasant.

Some infamous members of the mainstream McTell News like to feed us pabulum to keep us asleep until the nightmare comes:
Primetime Fox News
WSJ Editorial
Climate Coverage
Mostly Wrong

An analysis by the Union of Concerned Scientists finds that 93 percent of climate info on Fox News prime time and 81 percent on the Wall Street Journal Opinion pages is misleading.
(Scientific American). The larger, general media activity with regard to global warming induced climate change, is likewise wrong headed:
Political maneuvering aside, why are Americans so disengaged from climate change – arguably, one of the most critical problems of our time?

Denial ain't just a river in Egypt; it's also in places like North Carolina and perhaps even embedded into America's cultural DNA. According to the latest study from the Yale Project on Climate Change Communication, the American public's concern about global warming can be sorted into six categories, ranging from alarmed (13%) and concerned (26%), to cautious, disengaged, doubtful and dismissive (that's the other 61% of us). Among the many explanations offered for the knowledge gap are clashing worldviews, varying education levels, demographics, and the media's handling of the issue.

Even as evidence for climate change mounts and the consequences of the phenomenon become more severe, the amount of climate coverage on broadcast networks has plummeted.
(America's Miasma of Misinformation, emphasis added). So American media either lie about global warming induced climate change, or they ignore it.

Let he or she who has the most sin cast the first stone ... or do we get to the bottom of our biggest source of injury-death (military suicide and civilian suicide) which may be indications that media propaganda is divisive & deadly?

The next post in this series is here, the previous post in this series is here.

How quaint?

There was a time
when the far right
the far left
were more cordial
one American to the other
perhaps giving rise
to the question

The full Wales Visitation (parts read to Buckley by Ginsburg in the video) is here.