Saturday, December 08, 2012

Pay attention you there in the front row entwined in your (temporarily) significant other on date night

Eli occasionally points to important things.  Brian's post on instituting climate impact discussions in all of the Santa Clara Valley water board agenda items is such a thing, something that each of us should press onto our local water authorities, city councils, whatever, whenever we can.  Brian is right, these types of institutional changes are vital,


Anonymous said...

I should probably disclose that the climate impact discussion for all items was my wife's idea. I did disclose that during the board meeting, but I'll just add it here.

Areeba Khan said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
John said...

The first, and most needed, institutional change is to reverse our murderous policy of global intervention.

John Puma


In Kazakhstan Areeba's spam make earning on every stately pleasure dome decree

Si said...

Dear All. I asked this question over at Tamino's but haven't had a reply. Can someone here help?

How much effect does the melting of ice sheets, warming of oceans etc have on reducing the atmospheric temperature rise? Could the recent flat temperatures (despite a planetary radiative imbalance) be caused by the simultaneous ice melt? Thanks.

Anonymous said...

The question "Could the recent flat temperatures (despite a planetary radiative imbalance) be caused by the simultaneous ice melt?" is ill-conceived.

Tamino has addressed the claim of "recent flat temperatures" in numerous posts, but you might want to start with The real Global warming signal (a post that summarizes the results of a peer reviewed publication in a very easy to understand way).


Aaron said...

That is a point that I try to make frequently.

Any true measure of global warming would be in calories, or joules or BTU - not degrees.

David B. Benson said...

The SI unit, joules, please.

Si said...

Thanks for the responses. Just to say that I am not a skeptic at all it's just that I wonder what the effect of ice melt and warming oceans does to the radiative imbalance. Clearly, the earth's atmosphere can't raise temperature as well as melt ice. So....if the ice is melting does this not also mean that less energy is available to raise temperature?

Is this the correct way to see it?

Hank Roberts said...

I recall seeing the numbers somewhere long ago.

You want to be comparing the amount of heat captured by the planet (after CO2 rises, over thousands of years, until the climate reaches a stable equilibrium temperature) to the heat required to melt all the ice (once during that period).

Roughly like putting an ice cube in a hot oven, I recall.

On local politics, I find myself wondering if the current Supreme Court majority is tipping the country toward state/local-option on a variety of things starting with marijuana and marriage, and will end up empowering state governments to decide state level rules on energy and environment.

It'd be a scary result.
You did see Doonesbury today?

Anonymous said...

It's a straightforward calculation, but the
Polar Science Center
provides an estimate of the energy required
To melt the additional 280 km3 of sea ice, the amount we have have been
losing on an annual basis based on PIOMAS calculations, it takes roughly
8.6 x 1019 J or 86% of U.S. energy consumption.
However, when spread over the area covered by Arctic sea ice, the additional
energy required to melt this much sea ice is actually quite small. It corresponds
to about 0.4 Wm-2

The arctic sea-ice represents about 2% of the total earth surface, so that 0.4 gets
"diluted" down to about 0.008W per sq m distributed over earth surface. (this allows you to
compare to the global radiative energy imbalance)

Compare that to the estimated radiative energy imbalance
given by Hansen et al
: 0.58 W per sq m.

So, the arctic sea ice loss would amount to only about 1% of the radiative energy imbalance.

If you also include the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheet melting (estimated total melt of about 213
Gt per year obtained by summing the central estimates here),
the above total (as a % of energy imbalance) due to ice melt gets increased to just less than 2%.

How much energy gets sucked up by the oceans is another matter (clearly, a great deal, but the primary
impact is simply to slow the rate of observed atmospheric warming, with more warming "in the pipeline")
but as I indicated above, the question about "flat [surface air] temperatures" really is ill-conceived, at any rate.


Si said...

Thanks Anonymous...that's helpful