Wednesday, January 05, 2011

Eli Luntz

Atmospheric carbon contamination.

That is all. You could add irresponsible atmospheric carbon contamination if you have the full nine seconds.

29 comments:

David B. Benson said...

irresponsible atmospheric carbon contamination leads to irresponsible ocean carbon contamination

Hank Roberts said...

irresponsible contamination is an oxymoron.

EliRabett said...

Shall we henceforth simply refer to carbon contamination?

Timothy Chase said...

Hank, an oxymoron is a contradiction in terms. What you are looking for is a rhetorical (as distinct from logical) tautology -- a repetition in terms or redundancy. Like the Sahara Desert. Or dishonest denialist.

dhogaza said...

"Like the Sahara Desert. "

Sahara serves to differentiate that particular desert from all others, i.e. the Sonoran, Mojave, etc etc, therefore is not redundant. It serves to identify not only a particular geographical location, but an ecosystem (or set of ecosystems), as well.

Jim Bouldin said...

No. Contamination involves the undesired entry of something into some environment that was previously pure wrt it. Not the case here at all.

EliRabett said...

The dose makes the poison

Jim Bouldin said...

Sometimes, but at any rate that's not the same thing as contamination.

EliRabett said...

Jim, you are making the typical scientist mistake, it reminds Eli of the nonsense about "greenhouse effect", which captures an essential element of what happens without being complete. If you trace the history of the term, although Fourier did not use it, he described a device which was essentially a small greenhouse to explain how an absorbing atmosphere warms the surface. It captures the important point that energy flow out of the system is restricted in terms of something that everyone understands.

Jim Bouldin said...

Rabbit, I completely disagree here. The point of an analogy is to illustrate a concept. The point of this post appears to be to find a new name for global warming, although I'm starting to wonder what the point is. To call it "carbon contamination" is not helpful--the analogy has holes big enough to drive a truck through. If I were a denier I would call you on provocative wordsmithing with intent to alarm. If you can defend why you think "contamination" is appropriate, I'll listen, but I think it's flat out wrong.

EliRabett said...

Because Eli wants to get rich and famous too?

Naw, he is a bunny. OTOH, for example, excess nitrates in ground water are contaminants and Eli can find you lots of other examples.

What Eli is looking for is a short, pithy, and accurate (see above) description of our injection of excess carbon into the atmosphere. Global warming, and climate change are consequences of atmospheric carbon contamination as is acidification of the oceans.

Anonymous said...

How is this Eli; Carbon Aspirating?:o)

Mark said...

What was it that Arrhenius called it? Evaporating our coal in to the atmosphere (or something like that)

Anonymous said...

What about "human carbon engineering project" HCEP?

Maybe in some centuries a geologist will write:
"The HCEP startet in the 19th century, which signs the begin of the now called anthropocene."

greetings,
Andreas

Anonymous said...

Sorry,
I meant HCGP, the "human carbon geoengineering project".

Funny to see, that the whole world deprecates geoengineering and by the way neglects, that we are just doing that with CO2.

Andreas

Anonymous said...

Don't you think 'carbon aspirating', is "short, pithy & accurate..." Eli?:o)

You do not say...

EliRabett said...

The dose makes the poison. The natural cycle which puts nitrates into water does not lead to the dead zones, excess nitrate contamination from over-fertilization does.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Jim Bouldin said...

OK, valid point Eli, contamination has more than one meaning. We could get into nuances, but I guess I just don't like the way people are always trying to "re-brand" things. The EPA calls it a pollutant and that's good enough for me.

Timothy Chase said...

I wrote, "What you are looking for is a rhetorical (as distinct from logical) tautology -- a repetition in terms or redundancy. Like the Sahara Desert. Or dishonest denialist."

dhogaza responded, "Sahara serves to differentiate that particular desert from all others, i.e. the Sonoran, Mojave, etc etc, therefore is not redundant. It serves to identify not only a particular geographical location, but an ecosystem (or set of ecosystems), as well."

And the Gobi Desert, I presume.

Please see:

"Repetitions of meaning sometimes occur when multiple languages are used together, such as: 'rice pilaf' ('pilaf' is Turkish for 'rice'),'chai tea' (tea tea), shrimp scampi ('scampi' is Italian for shrimp),'the La Brea Tar Pits' (the The tar Tar Pits)), 'the hoi polloi' (the the many), 'Sierra Nevada mountain range' (Snowy Mountain Range mountain range), 'Sahara Desert' (Deserts Desert), 'Gobi Desert' (Desert Desert), 'shiba inu dog' (little bush dog dog), 'shiitake mushroom' (shii mushroom mushroom), 'Koi carp' (carp carp), Jirisan Mountain' (Jiri mountain mountain), 'Mississippi River' (Great-river river), 'Rio Grande river' (big river river), 'cheese quesadilla' (cheese cheesy-thing), 'salsa sauce' (sauce sauce),'Lake Tahoe' (Lake Lake), 'Faroe Islands' (Sheep Island Islands), 'with Au jus juice' (with with juice juice), and 'Angkor Wat temple' (Angkor Temple temple). Possibly the most extreme example is 'Torpenhow Hill' (Hill-hill-hill Hill, in four languages). 'Breedon on the Hill' in Leicestershire is a similar example; its name means 'hill-hill on the hill'."

Tautology: Repetitions of meaning in mixed-language phrases
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tautology_(rhetoric)#Repetitions_of_meaning_in_mixed-language_phrases

Of course there is a specific Sahara Desert that you can point to on the map and visit in real life and it is distinct from other deserts. Otherwise people every use the name/phrase. But in terms of the origin of the name itself it is a rhetorical tautology -- that nevertheless borrows from two different languages. Furthermore, it is commonly given as a typical example of a rhetorical tautology, albeit by and for those with a sense of humor.

EliRabett said...

Atmospheric carbon pollution works for Eli too.

Timothy Chase said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Timothy Chase said...

In my last comment above I had written, "Otherwise people every use the name/phrase."

"Every" should have been "would never." In a bit of a hurry today. Work-related.

Anonymous said...

Carbon dioxidosis.



Bernard J. Hyphen-Anonymous XVII

Anonymous said...

Carbon Doseydough...?

Kooiti MASUDA said...

I concur with Jim Boudin that "carbon contamination" is not apt, since it would suggest that carbon should not exist (above practically negligible level) in the atmosphere in good condition.

"Nitrate contamination in ground water" sounds apt (to me) when either the anthropogenic nitrate is readily distinguishable (without mass spectrospy) from natural one, or the amount is larger by one decimal order-of-magnitude or more.

The increase of amount of carbon in the atmosphere is not necessarily those of carbon atoms which directly came from fossil fuel. (This fact is used by one school of AGW deniers in Japan to argue that anthropogenic carbon remains in the atmosphere just for a few years. Their argument is similar to No. 68 of http://www.skepticalscience.com/argument.php , also related to No. 26.) Moreover, we do not expect that anthoropogenic carbon would accumulate so much that the natural level becomes negligible.

How about "carbon overdose"? Does it imply that someone intentionally adds this substance to the atmosphere perhaps as fertilizer?

Kooiti MASUDA said...

Excuse me for misspelling the name of Jim Bouldin.

Michael Tobis said...

+1 carbon contamination

cce said...

Dangerous carbon imbalance.
Unrequested carbon surplus (with apologies to Mr. Burns).