Monday, July 24, 2017

Confronting another failure in scientific communication - Antarctic’s Iceberg A-68

Around July 11th a trillion tonne chunk of Larson C ice shelf broke off and become the roughly 2,200 sq mile Iceberg A-68.  The news was reported by scientists observing the growing crack through the Project Midas website. 

Martin O’Leary a Research Officer at Swansea University and expert in ice flow modeling was quoted and has been re-quoted ad nauseum saying:

Although this is a natural event and we’re not aware of any link to human-induced climate change, this puts the ice shelf in a very vulnerable position.”
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Larsen C Ice Shelf - February 21, 2017
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Huge Antarctic iceberg finally breaks free - Larsen Ice Shelf, Antarctica 
July 12, 2017
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

I understand there’s valid reasons for scientists being ultra-conservative in making connections, but that "no link" suggestion is simply weird, pollyannaish even.  Reads like it was penned by a Trump team member rather than a dedicated researcher.  Or, perhaps it was penned by someone deeply frightened by the Trump Administration and funding concerns.  

Before labeling me a scientist basher understand my years worth of blogging has been all about defending the solid integrity of scientists, and the work they have been sharing with a public that has a right to know the unvarnished truth without constantly being deluged by lies, slander and disingenuous distractions into irrelevance.  

{PS. Check out the latest news, once again exposing how all this 'Seepage' started: 

Utilities Knew: Documenting Electric Utilities’ Early Knowledge and Ongoing Deception on 

Climate Change From 1968-2017  http://www.energyandpolicy.org/utilities-knew-about-climate-change/


It’s true, I’m only a high school grad, class of ’73, but I’ve been actively keeping up on climate science developments and global observations ever since.  Does that give me the right to lecture experienced professionals on communicating science?  

Well if they continue spinning reality into an intellectual parlor game that ignores the existential crisis we have collectively created for ourselves, … if their message sidesteps common sense geophysical interconnections.  You bet !  

So long as I can support my indictment with rational arguments and valid evidence. 

This post will be about the mountain of evidence pointing to this recent calving event being part and parcel of an interconnected global climate engine that is being warmed by society’s fossil fuel burning emissions!  It will also spotlight other examples of gratuitous misleading words injected into reports purely for their soothing value and political cover.

Not having every single detail of every dynamic interconnection mapped out in it’s entirety is no justification for ignoring obvious dynamics and cascading consequences.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Diary 7/22/17 "Chat.Hotwhopper.com" What happened? Where are You?

I want to share something I posted over at the neglected Hotwhopper Chat room.  No it's not Sou who's done any neglecting.  Here's to looking at the person in the mirror.

What happened?

It's really sad that nothing has happened here.  I keep looking in and nothing.  Out of all those hundreds, thousands of participants in the  "Denial101x - Making Sense of Climate Science Denial" MOOC (Massive Open Online Course)  https://www.skepticalscience.com/denial101x-videos-and-references.html.  Weren't these students and concerned citizens interested in communicating the truth and essence of climate science fundamentals to their fellow citizens?

Seems to me chat.hotwhopper.com was a perfect platform for students and other novices to science communication to come together to support and feed and strengthen each other.  People who felt an urge to add their own energy to the struggle of educating a people who don't want to learn.

Where are they?

Sunday, July 2, 2017

Diary July 2nd, 2017 personal note and Village at Wolf Creek update


Just dropping by to say hello.  
At first I stopped posting because I needed to STOP.  
Too many train wrecks one on top of the other.  

Important matters with dark irreversible consequences, 
all very tragic and having a deep emotional impact on me.
Trump election; the astounding failure of vision and determination Democrats displayed in never getting Merrick Garland his Supreme Court hearing and vote; Bates’ malicious attack piece; the Fyfe 2016 fiasco paper that amounted to a stamp collection that produced a report that read like a Rorschach test; followed by a bit of related drama I still hope to write about, for the lessons it offers.

Rather than dance with a breakdown, 
it was time to put down the notepad and step away from the keypad, 
refocus on the work I do for pay, 
then after-hours, 
I shutdown my thoughts regarding things I’m absolutely impotent to do anything about.  As much as possible.

It was also time to focus full attention on this young dog who’s decided she owns me (my 1st) and our many (newly undistracted) walks over this forty acres I get to call my home.  Yeah, the universe has a strange sense of humor, but so it goes.

It was a good break for about a month, but with psyche mended or at least new acceptance of the profound failures we children of the intellectual enlightenment are guilty of, my thoughts won’t shut down completely.  I can't be blind to the world and if I can't be anything beyond a lone witness, so be it.  I heard a profound thought recently: "Hope is a survival strategy in hopeless times."  On we go.  (slightly edited 7/3/17 evening)

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Monbiot Considers The Problem With Freedom

As I've lamented before, my passion for writing about these issues is at the bottom of my real life duties and expectations priority list.  The spring-time jobs are coming in fast an' furious, three posts laying there waiting for some free time.  I did notice an interesting read worth sharing while I'm out on assignment.  Once again George Monbiot nails it.
___________________________________________________________
Posted: 07 Apr 2017 01:05 AM PDT
Freedom is used as the excuse for ripping down public protections on behalf of the very rich.

By George Monbiot, published in the Guardian 5th April 2017
http://www.monbiot.com/2017/04/07/the-problem-with-freedom/

Propaganda works by sanctifying a single value, such as faith, or patriotism. Anyone who questions it puts themselves outside the circle of respectable opinion. The sacred value is used to obscure the intentions of those who champion it. Today the value is freedom. Freedom is a word that powerful people use to shut down thought.
When thinktanks and the billionaire press call for freedom, they are careful not to specify whose freedoms they mean. Freedom for some, they suggest, means freedom for all. In certain cases, this is true. You can exercise freedom of thought and expression, for example, without harming other people. In other cases, one person’s freedom is another’s captivity.

When corporations free themselves from trade unions, they curtail the freedoms of their workers. When the very rich free themselves from tax, other people suffer through failing public services. When financiers are free to design exotic financial instruments, the rest of us pay for the crises they cause.

Above all, billionaires and the organisations they run demand freedom from something they call “red tape”. What they mean by red tape is public protection. An article in the Telegraph last week was headlined “Cut the EU red tape choking Britain after Brexit to set the country free from the shackles of Brussels”. Yes, we are choking, but not on red tape. We are choking because the government flouts European rules on air quality. The resulting air pollution frees thousands of souls from their bodies.

Ripping down such public protections means freedom for billionaires and corporations from the constraints of democracy. This is what Brexit – and Trump – are all about. The freedom we were promised is the freedom of the very rich to exploit us.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

#B-Unauthorized annotation of Chairman Lamar Smith’s March 29 Climate Science statement. (2 of 2)

US House Science, Space and Technology Committee Chairman Lamar Smith had a hearing March 29 during which he made many claims and insinuations which are frankly false.  
In this exercise I keep my commentary to a minimum and allow scientists to speak for themselves by way of a number of embedded YouTube videos.  If the videos don’t work for you, I’ve included the URL’s so you can link to them.  I also included links to other resources where appropriate.  This collection is for sharing.  For more of an introduction you might try: Confirmed Lamar Smith Manipulated Bates (feb 5th) A Line by Line Review.  Official Hearing Record:

For Immediate Release Media Contact: March 29, 2017
Statement of Chairman Lamar Smith (R-Texas)
Climate Science: Assumptions, Policy Implications, and the Scientific Method
Part 2 
{Link to Part 1}
____________________________________________



Chairman Lamar Smith continues:  For example, the Science Committee heard from whistleblowers that National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) employees put their “thumb on the scale” during the analysis of data.

___________________

Recent Ocean Warming has been Underestimated




~~~~~


Bruce Wielicki - Climate Change: Fact And Fiction 

Dr. Bruce Wielicki senior scientist for Earth 
science at NASA's Langley Research Center - cloud expert
~~~~~
There's more to this claim of "thumbs on the scale," for the rest of that story link to and check the list of information rich stories:

Confirmed Lamar Smith Manipulated Bates - 
A Line by Line Review of Smith’s February 5th statement.

#A-Unauthorized annotation of Chairman Lamar Smith’s March 29 Climate Science statement. (1 of 2)

US House Science, Space and Technology Committee Chairman Lamar Smith had a hearing March 29 during which he made many claims and insinuations which are frankly false.  
In this exercise I keep my commentary to a minimum and allow scientists to speak for themselves by way of a number of embedded YouTube videos.  If the videos don’t work for you, I’ve included the URL’s so you can link to them.  I also included links to other resources where appropriate.  This collection is for sharing.  For more of an introduction you might try: Confirmed Lamar Smith Manipulated Bates (feb 5th) A Line by Line Review.  Official Hearing Record:

For Immediate Release Media Contact: March 29, 2017
Statement of Chairman Lamar Smith (R-Texas)
Climate Science: Assumptions, Policy Implications, and the Scientific Method Part 1 {Link to Part 2}

Chairman Smith: Today we will examine the scientific method as it relates to climate change. We must ensure that the underlying science that informs policy decisions is based on credible scientific methodology.
___________________

STATE OF THE CLIMATE IN 2015 - Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society 
NATIONAL CENTERS FOR ENVIRONMENTAL INFORMATION | August 2016 (v97n8)
~~~~~
A Climate Minute - Climate Science History
John P Reisman  |  (starts at 0:17)
____________________________________________
I believe the climate is changing and that humans play a role. 
___________________

Tendency to underestimate climate impacts
____________________________________________
However, I also believe significant questions remain as to the extent.
___________________

WHAT ARE THESE SIGNIFICANT QUESTIONS?  

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Unauthorized annotated Fyfe coauthors letter to US Rep. Lamar Smith

The Fyfe et al 2016 clarifying letter to US Representative Lamar Smith is well written.  There's nothing to complain about and I don't.  Still at 1000 word there's only so much it can say, and I'm going to use this opportunity to make my point using the words of other scientists.  Remember my beef is about communication, not the science.

I’ve borrowed from about a dozen climate studies, along with some other info and let their quotes speak for themselves.  I apologize for some of the hard feeling.  I do not apologize pushing for better recognition of our* failures to communicate, how else can we learn, how else can we improve?  (slight edit, I realized Josh Willis' quote belongs at the start of this reading, not at the end.)

Best Wishes.  

For the background to this, link here
* Climate science communicators big and little.

“One way to think about it is that global warming continued, but the oceans just juggled a bit of heat around and made the surface seem cooler for a while” 
Joshua Willis Ph.D. - JPL

Source for the text:

Letter to Lamar Smith
March 28, 2017    communication   Ed Hawkins  Climate Lab Book

The Committee on Science, Space & Technology of the US House of Representatives conducts regular evidence hearings on various science topics. On Wednesday 29th March, there is a hearing on “Climate science: assumptions, policy implications, and the scientific method”. The following letter, summarising the scientific findings of Fyfe et al. (2016) and Karl et al. (2015), has been submitted as evidence to this hearing.

The broader context is that the Committee Chairman, Mr. Lamar Smith, has previously discussed the findings of Fyfe et al. (of which I was a co-author), claiming: “A new peer-reviewed study, published in the journal Nature, confirms the halt in global warming”

This statement is incorrect, and motivated the clarification on what Fyfe et al. actually says.

Dear Mr. Smith,
We are coauthors of the Fyfe et al. paper published in 2016 in Nature Climate Change [1]. You recently referenced this paper at a Subcommittee hearing on March 16, 2016 [2]. We are writing to clarify what the Fyfe et al. paper actually finds and claims. We also want to ensure that the conclusions of the Fyfe et al. paper are not misconstrued as a criticism of Thomas Karl, of the Karl et al. paper published in Science in 2015 [3], or of the valuable research that Dr. Karl and his team have performed over many years.