Letterman on Global Warming: "We're Dead Meat" [video]

Tue, 2008-09-23 12:55Emily Murgatroyd
Emily Murgatroyd's picture

Letterman on Global Warming: "We're Dead Meat" [video]

As always, Letterman puts us straight - this time on global warming:

Comments

pretty funny

well if letterman is aboard, I guess I’ll just give up the battle… or maybe not.

note that his major theme was “there is nothing we can do”

the fact that we can’t control the climate is basically where I stand too.

by adding excess CO2 and methane to the air.

We can, if we’ll just do it, stop adding as much CO2 and sequester carbon back deep underground; pyrolize biomass and store the resulting biochar. Doing this in a big way for about a century will restore the climate to a more natural state.

I like the CO2 conversion into cement a lot better. Make something useful out of it

Cement contains no carbon.

so that news item I linked the other day was fake then?
how bout the green cement site
something about bubbling through sea water I think http://cleantechnica.com/2008/09/02/green-cement-is-carbon-neutral-sequesters-co2-from-power-plants/

but does not make ordinary Portland cement. Likely to only ever be small potatoes.

David:
Please enlighten us all on What the hell the “natural State” of the climate is.

Seems to me that the median level of atmospheric CO2 over the last few hundred million years has been about 1500 ppm or so.

And the average temps were 10 to 15 degrees higher.

So what exactly is the Natural State?

CO2 concentration was 280 ppm, in 1750 CE. W.F. Ruddiman, in his popular “Plows, Plagues and Petroleum” makes the point that there were important anthropogenic influences even than. Still, that level, or a bit higher, say 290 ppm, is a safe target; not too cold; not too hot; just right.

Humans may have been altering the climate even before that - according to an article in New Scientist on the research of William Ruddiman, http://environment.newscientist.com/channel/earth/mg19926721.600-the-ice-age-that-never-was.html
which suggests that human activities 6000 years ago, such as deforestation, altered the natural ghg rhythms enough to prevent an ice age.

and the wing of a butterfly can start a hurricane?

I suppose you could say the advent of trees and grasses disrupted the natural state of the planet and it’s pre vegetation climate and it should be returned to those natural conditions - Lets Nuke the trees!

Or you could say Humans are nature. We don’t disrupt nature, we are nature.

Completely missing the point that the current biosphere and human civilisation both have evolved in the climate as it was up until a couple of hundred years ago.

Just right according to who?
I think its too cold actually.

And who said that 290 ppm was some king of optimum?
For Most of history it was much higher.
Anything below 1000ppm is fairly unusual for planet earth.
We are simply at a very low point in CO2 concentration and it shows by the reduced vegitation we have now.

More CO2 means more food.

When it gets to 5000 or more, start to worry.

I’m thinking an ice free Antarctica might be interesting and a wide open North would be great. Dead frozen useles tundra is paradise to some but not me.

Sure we’d lose the current coastlines, but who cares about that? They’re just lined with a bunch of ugly cities anyway. Unfortunately this global warming thing is going to take a long time.

What about the Bears - who cares? they’ll adapt, they’ll move - and if they eventually die out? once again who cares? it happens. Species die out when they don’t belong in the biosphere anymore.

What about water crises? It’s here now - lots of people are without good water supply. Haven’t you heard of river blindness? As long as people fight wars and make boundaries the poor will suffer. Don’t think that there is a magic CO2 atmosphere content that is going to prevent the poor from suffering and dying. It’s not about climate. It’s about war and nationalism and the heart of man. It can’t be fixed by chemistry.

Thats the basic misunderstanding here.

But historically those changes have happened over millions of years. Here we’re talking significant changes over the course of a human lifespan. Most organisms on the planet can only adapt to environmental change by natural selection, which is slow, so if those changes happen too fast it will result in a mass extinction.

Oh, and don’t forget hundreds of millions of refugees from rising oceans, flooding and drought. Consider the magnitude of your rationalization if you say you’re ok with that.

David, ever wondered how the large sauropods managed to find enough vegitation to eat? We know what elephants do, sauropods where several times bigger eaters.

Elevated CO2 levels. 3-4 TIMES today’s levels, at least. Plants grew much faster because of that, hence enough to support super large dinosaurs.

We are at a CO2 low in all of geologic history right now. This started 55myo when India started to collide with Asia. The rising Himalayas altered wind patterns that normally went into Siberia. Rain fall on the Himalayas started instead (hence the Gobi Desert). That increased rainfall took CO2 out of the atmosphere which in turn disolved the uplifting rock, sequestering the CO2 as carbonate rock (the largest single source of CO2 is locked up in the world’s carbonate rock)

Yes: Well I saw a documentary that show conclusively that humans were altering the climate back when the dinosaurs were roaming.
I believe it was 10000 BC and stared Rachel Wealsh.

Seem as believable as that NewScientist article.

4 million years (genus Homo) or, better, about 200,000 (species sapiens).

Humans are a cold adapted species and won’t do well in a warmer world. In the entire time of the existance of Homo sapiens, the only time with a significantly higher temperature than now was during the Eemian interglacial (when CO2 was 287 ppm, maximum). At that time East Africa, mankind’s original home, suffered serious prolonged droughts; our remote ancesors were thereby forced out of their Eden to spread, eventually, to all lands.

In 1850 CE, wiuth CO2 at 288 ppm, the Swiss glaciers stopped growing. By 1958 CE, with CO2 at 315 ppm, the Swiss glaciers were in retreat at 4 m/y. So about 290 ppm seems to be a sensible amount to aim for.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homo_(genus)

which is about when the ‘ice ages’ began.

David.
Respectfully!! Really?
“Humans are a cold adapted species and won’t do well in a warmer world”

Humans live comfortably in tropical cliamtes and arctic cliamtes. (more comfortably in the tropics)
The temperature range is more than 30 degrees C.

Even full on nutbars like James Hansen are claiming less than 3 degrees increase (reality says 1)
People won’t even notice it.

And as for the glaciers, geeze!!! Nost of the melting happened before the magic 1950 switch over form natural warming to man made warming.
They have been melting quite naturally since the mid 1800s.
Nothing new here…. move along! move along!

I think since the warming effect of CO2 is pretty much tapped out already, a target level of 700 to 1000 would be very advantageous for agriculture and world food supply.

long before a global warming of 6 K. For the effects thereof, read Mark Lynas’s “Six Degrees” or Joe Romm’s “Hell and High Water”.

The pre-industrial level of CO2 was 280 ppm in 1750 CE. By 1850 CE it reached 288 ppm. This small change was enough so that the glaciers started melting. (And many people depend upon glaciers for a reliable source of water.)

There are many effects to a warmer world than just the temperature. As I said, people won’t prosper in a wamer world.

Learn to deal wiith it.

David:
Could you somehow back up that interesting statement?
“This small change was enough so that the glaciers started melting.”

In all the hysterical and outragwous claims I have heard from AGW alarmists, this is the first time I have heard anyone try to blame the recovery from the LIA on the meager little 8 PPM of CO2.

But Hay… AGW seems to think CO2 can do pretty much anything, so…..

HI THERE I AM THE MASTER CHIEF IF THE CO2 LEVELS GET OUT OF CONTROLE OUR CLOAKED SPACE SHIPS IN ORBITE WILL EVACUATE EARTH THATS WHY YOU SEE FLYING SUASERS OVER AREA 51 A LOT IF YOUR CO2 LEVELS GET TOO 2,000 PPM AND THE GLOBAL OCEAN TEMPS AVERAGES 100 DEGREES FERHINITE THEN EVERY ONE TOO OUR EVACUATION BEAM OUT LOCATIONS OUR HALO RING HAS BEEN MONITORING CLIMITE FROM EARTH YOU MAY NEVER SAVE EARTH IT CAN BE TOO LATE AND YOUR SCINTIST ARE DUMB THEY WONT MENCTION WHEN TOO JUST SKIP SAVEING EARTH AND ABONDON PLANET EARTH WE HAVE 240,000 CLOAKED SPACE SHIPS IN ORBITE TOO EVACUATE TRILLIONS OF HUMMAN SPECIES AND ALL SPECIES ON EARTH WE GET GOOGLE UNIVERSES PER GRAM OF PURE ANTI-MATER AND MULTI DIMINSIONAL TOO AT -50 PPG FOR PARTICALS PER GOOGLE THE LOWEST NOW ENERGY TRACE THE NEWEST SPECIES IN THE UNIVERSE WILL BE -999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999.999999999999999999999999 PPG WICH MEANS NOTHING CAN NOT DETECT WITH PERFECT CLOAKING TECHNOLOGIES THAT MEANS OUR BIO FILTERS CAN TAKE OUT INFINT UNAVERSE CO2 LEVELS AND GET BEYOUND INFINITY UNAVERSES AND DIMINSIONS PER GOOGLE NANO GRAM OF ANTI -MATTER

hey space dude, all your 9’s are stretching out the thread sideways.

Be prepared to be squashed under the superior power of Fern’s spell checker. She will defeat you.

Now don’t get all sarcastic on me. For the record, I don’t use a spell checker. They are unreliable, usually American, and if your spelling error results in a real word (but not the one you meant), it doesn’t notice that it’s wrong for the context. And also for the record, hoarde is how the verb is spelt. Check it out.

Fern Mackenzie

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