NASA scientist Hansen on 60 Minutes Sunday

By Phil Plait | March 19, 2006 12:54 pm

The NASA global warming scientist James Hansen (who is the reason George Deutsch got outed) will be on 60 Minutes Sunday night. I doubt anything new will be revealed (he has actually been quoted as being happy with NASA’s new communication policy, and will get back to science instead of soapboxing– and NASA did just issue a press release on the ice caps melting as I mentioned in the last entry), but even if not it should be interesting.

Comments (39)

  1. Kaptain K

    Unfortunately, I was not able to watch the show, as I was at work. FWIW, Art Bell did see it and he was very upset about it on his show tonight

  2. Greg Wilson

    This sounds like Orwell’s 1984–with the Bush administration in the role of Big Brother obviously. When it gets to the point that nepotistic idiots can censor what respected scientists need to tell folks, well….Is anyone surprised that Bush’s new “global warming advisor” is Michael Crighton?
    I saw the show and was disgusted that an oil industry stooge can do all that’s been done and then leave to take a job with Exxon! I honestly think at some point that we get what we deserve: no one is complaining about gas failing to drop when the market does and our trusted “news sources”, i.e. mainstream news, gives these folks a free pass.
    I thought for a while that the man on the street was about to see the light–after all, many voted for bush and some that I talked with were finally seeing through all the deception but… Look at what’s happened in all the corruption and incompetence that’s been pointed out: NOTHING!
    Feingold couldn’t even get one opposition party member to support a censure: is there any hope for impeachment? There’s not 2 cents difference in these parties and no hope of a serious 3rd party candidate. I think just allowing an idiot to censor anything from Hansen whatsoever and then go back to a job with Exxon is grounds for indictment and impeachment for the folks who put stooge in position.

  3. I don’t watch “60 Minutes” as often as I used to, but I did manage to catch that segment and found it QUITE disturbing. Science is really starting to suffer under this administration. But then again, with so many Bushies convinced that Rapture and Armageddon are just around the corner, why worry about something global warming?

  4. Pablo

    I told my wife to watch the show with me, because she thinks I’m crazy when I say I’m worried, but she ended up almost crying… I just want to go to see Alaska before they start drilling oil in the natural reserves…!!!

  5. JL

    Yeah, it’s all Bush’s fault.

    The Polar Bears are dying because of Global Warming (proven false)
    The Hurricane seasons are worse because of Global Warming (proven false)
    I cloned a human (proven false)
    I cloned a dog (proven false)

    All of the above were touted by the main stream media without any proof.

    A lot of scientists are just as bad as a lot of politicians. They’ll say anything to get the headlines, grants, etc. Global warming may indeed be something caused by humanity, but…why is it this administration’s fault? I highly doubt it went from some benign minor affect to what the Chicken Littles are spouting on about during Bush’s 6 years of being in office. He didn’t take office and flip a switch labeled Global Warming ON. It’s not this administration’s fault or that administration’s fault. I’ve been to the third world countries and seen the smoke and smog from garbage fires and factories. I’ve looked down on Manila at daybreak and thought the entire city was on fire. Our atmosphere has gotten to this point over the few thousand years humanity has been pumping crap into the air.

    The world wants to blame the US for the world’s problems and everyone in the US that agrees wants to blame the current administration for them. Grow up, folks! This country does more for the rest of the world than the rest of the world does for itself. Our clean air acts are more strict than most of the rest of the world. The Kyoto Accords were a joke. They wanted to hold us to a higher standard than the third world.

    From the second hit on “Kyoto Accords” on Google:

    “When Clinton sent negotiators (who were not scientists) to Kyoto last December to work out a treaty to limit CO2 production, he had already chosen the most extreme of all options presented to him by his panel of experts. He then sent environmental extremist Al Gore to urge the U.S. negotiators to “be flexible.” The negotiators signed a treaty designed to limit CO2 production in the U.S. to 7% below the 1990 level by 2008, in spite of an increasing population and a slow tendency for increasing energy consumption per capita.

    Fortunately, the Senate has refused to ratify the Kyoto treaty, one that would subject U.S. energy production to the whims of third-world dictators (TEA, January, 1998). The reason for the refusal has more to do with economics than with the inept science behind the screams of global warmers, but it is a refusal nonetheless.”

    Let’s stop blaming and start doing.

  6. J. D. Mack

    JL write: The Hurricane seasons are worse because of Global Warming (proven false)

    Uh, how strong is that proof? Here’s another viewpoint

    http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?chanID=sa003&articleID=000051A6-DE14-1419-9E1483414B7F0000

    In my opinion, the blame that is being laid on the current administration is not that they’re causing global warming, but that they’re denying it regardless of what evidence is presented to them. And the reason they’re denying it is because if they acknowledge that human activity may be responsible for possible ecological disasters in the future, then businesses would HAVE to change their way of doing business, and that would cost a FORTUNE! Again, it’s just my opinion, but I see the current administration as sticking their hands over their ears, crying “I can’t hear you, I can’t hear you” rather than do something that may hurt economically.

    J. D.

  7. Paul Nevins

    If there is any science in the whole global warming debate I’m not seeing it. I’ve seen convincing research on both sides of the issue.

    One thing is certain the computer models of climate change cannot be better than our understanding of the variables that affect climate. To put it more simply they are less than useless to predict the future of climate.

    Right now we are freezing our butts off, I for one could stand some warming? Would a new ice age be a better result?

  8. Mark Martin

    The problem with the Bush government is NOT precisely a question of global warming. Even if it turns out that climate change isn’t as severe as many climatologists figure, a policy of official filtering/editing of research is a little thing I call “fascism”.

    Climatologists could be in error every bit as much as the lawyers think. But if they think so, then they should publish their own research.

  9. JL

    From the article J.D. Mack linked to:

    “The link between rising ocean temperatures and overall climate change remains murky because of the overlap between natural cycles and any global warming. “But if you buy the argument that global warming is causing the increase in sea surface temperatures–and everybody seems to be buying this–then it’s a pretty small leap to say global warming is causing this increase [in hurricane frequency],”

    The first sentence pretty much disqualifies this to me. The second sentence is the key, though. Buying the arguement that mainstream media puts out is what we do best. You have to keep in mind that they are out for sensational headlines that will grab ratings. It’s a matter of record that hurricane seasons have a distinct 10 to 20 year cycle and we are now entering the upswing portion of one.

    I am not saying there is no such thing as global warming, but neither am I saying there is. No one has been around long enough, nor are there records going back far enough to prove or disprove the natural cycle of the earth’s weather system…if you accept the few billion years old earth theory as opposed to the intelligent design earth age; and I ain’t trying to start that arguement :)

    You may be right that they are covering their eyes; I’m not in charge, so I can’t say. But I can say the same thing about just about any administration of any country that ever was….that’s politics. What I am saying is don’t just point the blame at the US. We aren’t the only ones living on this hunk of rock and we’re certainly not up there with the big polluters.

  10. Jeff

    Is there any evidence that directly links global warming to humans? Could it be something as simple as the sun being a 4% variable star? I know that’s not really the topic, but I’m curious.

  11. 3 minute video segment with Dr Piltz available – http://www.cbsnews.com/sections/i_video/main500251.shtml?channel=60Sunday (lots of buffering the 1st time, played perfectly the 2nd time)

  12. Your Name's Not Bruce?

    JL says “don’t just point the blame at the US.We aren’t the only ones living on this hunk of rock and we’re certainly not up there with the big polluters.”
    Okay then, who are these other big polluters? Not that I have any statistics handy, but my understanding is that both in terms of total and per capita pollution output and energy usage the United States is number 1 or very close to it. Please correct me if I’m wrong. Now, if countries like China and India attempt to attain (let alone succeed in attaining )an “American “standard of living, matching US per capita resource consumption, then their total pollutant output and energy consumption will far surpass that of the US. If that happens in the context of current energy generation and agricultural regimes, Earth will not be long inhabitable. Under these conditions I can’t imagine anything but ecological disaster, with catastrophic extinctions and subsequent loss of irreplaceable biosphere services upon human civilization depends. Even without the inevitable increase in greenhouse gasses that would accompany this degree of economic activity, the consequences of appropriating more and more of Earth’s biomass, mineral and water resources to “sustain” an “American” lifestyle are bad news for any organisms that aren’t human.(Except perhaps for scavengers and decomposers.)

  13. Trevor Wood

    Ask any “man in the street”if the greenhouse effect is good or bad and he will answer “bad”, likewise any high school student, even though without it Earth’s mean temperature would be 50 deg C below (or colder). Similarly if you asked what causes it they would answer “carbon dioxide from burning fossil fuels”, when TOTAL CO2 (from all sources including rain forests) is responsible for 3% of greenhouse warming and the other 97% is mainly due to water vapour, about which nobody seems to be doing anything. (Wonder troublewhy not?)

    We have this massive debate largely carried on by passionate, caring, uninformed people who care deeply but don’t trust “science”so they get their data from last night’s TV or regurgitated column filler in the local rag -trouble is getting and sorting solid info takes time and effort when ready to wear “ain’t it awful” opinions are available off the shelf.

  14. Olivia

    JL – I like your reasoning. You’re at least fair. Lots of stuff has been proven false because the big media ran with it without even verifying it. Anybody remember the Swift Boat vets? I commend our Pres. for not ratifying the Kyoto accords. The Senate understands what’s at stake, and have not ratified it, either.

  15. Kevin Conod

    >Right now we are freezing our butts off, I for one could stand some >warming? Would a new ice age be a better result?

    I’ve seen this argument before, but it doesn’t wash – its too simplistic. If Global Warming is occuring the result is not pleasant Florida-like weather over a larger area of the Earth. The result could be more extreme weather. In a worst-case senario, the world’s climate could shift around in unexpected ways, potentially wiping out the world’s “breadbaskets” leading to widespread famine.

  16. Kevin Conod

    >The Polar Bears are dying because of Global Warming (proven false)
    >The Hurricane seasons are worse because of Global Warming (proven false)
    >I cloned a human (proven false)
    >I cloned a dog (proven false)

    Not sure about the first one, the rest of these seem to be straw men.

    More intense hurricane seasons as a result has been neither proven nor disproven definitively.

    The latter two were not disproven – they were lies told by a south Korean scientist. Really a shameful epsiode, but this cannot be used as a blanket condemnation of all scientists.

    True, you can’t blame Bush or the administration for Global Warming, but their environmental record so far is pretty bad…

  17. Allen Lipscomb

    A thought if I may. This is an astronomy blog, is it not ? How many people leaving opinions on this blog actually study astronomy ? The reason I ask is nobody points out the pollutants pushed into our atmosphere from active volcanos and how does it compare to man made pollutants in amount?

    Are we going through an area in space with any less dust than the last 100 years, one might think a few particles of carbon dust (all over the Universe) might affect the amount of light we receive from the sun !!

    I would like to think that if any of the most vehement pro science buffs of which I might add, I am one, might check out a few of these options. Of course, if it doesn’t match up with thier anti Bush views, I guess it would be ignored.

    A lot of posts, shall we say have an agenda that is most definitely liberal. Not that they don’t have any right to be so, however tiresome it is to read. However, it does nothing to advance any scientific research mostly because none of it is scientific at all, just I hate Bush and its all Bush’s fault.

    Come on people. Do a little research. It doesn’t take that much effort to find out a few basics. It might help if you asked the right questions too.
    Don’t decide in advance that because you don’t like someone’s politics that attaching blame for what we already know is a natural occurrence.

    The earth has gone through several warming and cooling cycles this we know without any doubt whatsoever. Could we be in another natural cycle? Or won’t that fit in with some of your politics so must be discounted?
    To be credible, try a little less liberal talking points , and a bit more science.

  18. TheGalaxyTrio

    The most amazing fact in this thread: people still watch 60 Minutes? :)

    I remember many many years ago following up on stories I saw on that show with my own research, and coming to the realization what a hatchet job that show was.

    And someone mentioned Scientific American? I cancelled that rag after their assassination piece on Bjorn Jomborg, and I’m someone who had problems with many of Lomborg’s conclusions.

    Politics is a part of science. Always has been and always will be.

  19. tentman

    But would it be so hard to conserve resources and possibly pollute less? Even if it does not stop global warming i think it makes sense to have a more sensible attitude toward natural resources other than rape and pillage.

  20. Jim

    I’ve been following the debate on global warming since I was a graduate student studying evironmental physics in the mid ’70s. Here’s how I see it:
    1. fact: the average temperature of the Earth has risen by about 1C in the last 100 years.
    2. Fact: the % of CO2 in the atmosphere has been increasing because of burning of fossil fuels. (Human activities have also been causing an increase in methane.)
    3. Fact: CO2 (and methane) is a greenhouse gas which will absorb infrared radiation and can lead to warming of the earth.
    Now, the big question is, is the increase in Earth’s temperature caused by the CO2 emission or is this just an accidental correlation? Stripping away the rhetoric from both extremes, the general scientific consensus is that about half the warming is definitely from manmade pollutants.
    So the problem for people comes down to this: do we continue to increase the CO2 in the atmosphere and let the future deal with the consequences of increased warming such as sea level rise or climate changes including droughts and stronger storms? Or do we bit the economic bullet, pay the cost now, reduce our CO2 emissions, and thus reduce future impact of global warming?
    The problem with the Bush administration is not just that they have chosen the first option. But they have a deliberate policy of suppressing scientific research to try to halt the debate completely. Global warming IS happening, whether we are the sole or partial cause of it. We DO have ways to reduce its effects. Personally I’ld rather begin addressing the problem now with long range planning, rather than react in a crisis mode in the future.

  21. H. Hurley
  22. Allen Lipscomb

    I am providing a link to active volcanos around the world
    http://www.geo.mtu.edu/volcanoes/world.html

    Please do not try and tell me man is producing half of all greenhouse gas emissions in the world. That is pure unadulterated crap.

    Do I think we can do a better job of keeping our enviroment cleaner? Absolutely. There is no question we all as a whole could be doing a better job. Still, as a 47 soon to be 48 year old I have seen major advances in my lifetime of environmental cleanup and I am sure it will get better from now on, hopefully, the third world will eventually catch up to the USA in providing a cleaner and less toxic environment for their citizens. Because make no doubt about it, we lead the world (Industrialized) in pollution control.

  23. Allen Lipscomb, do you know what the total greenhouse gas emission of volcanos is in cubic kilometers per year? And what is the total produced by man, so that we can find the ratio?

    Without numbers, your claims are simply speculation, rhetoric.

  24. Your Name's Not Bruce?

    Allen Lipscomb says that the US leads the world in pollution control. That very well might be the case, I don’t know. But Bush’s policies have been tending towards relaxing ( gutting?) environmental protection standards. You will need to be much better at cleaning up if thse policies continue for long…

  25. Anyone who didn’t see the 60 Minutes show can read the transcript at http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2006/03/17/60minutes/main1415985.shtml

  26. Allen Lipscomb

    Mr Bad Astronomer,

    Do I have to do all the work for you? Would there be any possibility of occasionally people doing their own homework? I gave you a link so you can find the names of all the active volcanos, So therefore, be able to find out for yourself just exactly what was produced per year. I could say anything and people would, or would not, give me any creedance if they find out for themselves. It tends to make more of an impact.

    As for rhetoric, please read back on the posts and then tell me most of this blog isn’t “Rhetoric”. I have seen very little but Rhetoric .

    Now, the idea of this blog site, I thought, was a very good idea and when it first started I thought you wanted to be a tool against ignorance, but it has become more of a society for hate the Republicans, or rather, Conservatism.

    Did you really mean for this to happen or would you rather reach out to everyone? I don’t mind a good debate. I think diversity of opinion is a good thing..

    I guess the question is, do you wish for this to be just another soap box or actually, what do you wish this to be? I would like to know .In the mean time, I will rustle up the figures you want. Give me a couple of days and I will get back to you, unless I manage to get it done sooner.

  27. Allen Lipscomb

    I thought I would give you this one to be going on with.
    http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/1997/of97-262/of97-262.html
    More to come .

  28. Allen, you came here, made a claim that involves numbers, yet didn’t cite where you got your numbers from. It’s up to you to provide the actual citations. I shouldn’t doyour for you.

    As for bashing Republicans, I am not doing that. I am certainly bashing some Republicans, but not for being Republican. I’m bashing them because they are suppressing science. I’ll take on anyone who does that. If there are Democrats doing this, then I will add them to the list.

  29. Allen Lipscomb

    Me thinks thou dost protest too much. If all things being equal, how come you have singled me out ? I said in my last post, ” read the posts before mine then tell me you are not biased “.

    However, I have just a couple of volcanoes in links listed below that have spewed millions of tons of green house gasses. Remember these are just two out of approximately eighty active volcanos on Earth . I can back up my opinions with facts . Mr Bad Astronomer, isn’t it about time you did the same?

    Now that we have got that macho crap out of the way, how about we start with a new slate and actually try to do what I think you set out to do in the first place? Try and get past the politics and concentrate on the objective which is NOT Junk science. What do you say? Think that could happen?

    Now that you have read this please open the links below and take a look:

    http://www.emporia.edu/earthsci/student/sneed3/pinatubo.htm
    http://volcano.und.nodak.edu/vwdocs/Gases/pinatubo.html
    http://www.brightsurf.com/news/feb_03/JPL_news_021003.html

    Now tell me if you need further proof of what I have said, and I will try and hunt it down for you.

  30. This isn’t macho crap, and I don’t care (at the moment) about the other comments.

    This is really quite simple. You state that there is no way humans account for half of all greenhouse gas production, and then say there are 80 active volcanoes. Twice you’ve come back to post a comment, and neither time did you provide any numbers whatsoever to back up your claim. Even stating the precise amount of gas emitted by volcanoes does not back up your argument whatsoever, because you still haven’t said how much gas is emitted by human sources.

    I have no politics in mind right now. This is in fact at the very heart of science: backing up a claim with numbers. I cannot see how I can make this any more plain than that.

  31. your Name's Not Bruce?

    And I’m still waiting for the names of the “big polluters” among which Mr Lipscomb says the US is not to be found.

  32. Allen Lipscomb

    I guess its time to knock the ball out of the park.

    Firstly, to Mr Bad Astronomer. Do you even know what the most abundant greenhouse gas even is ???

    I thought not. So how about we start from there. It is not, as you might
    think, co2 or methane or any other toxic or flamable gas. Guess what it is?

    Also, it is capable of heating and cooling the atmosphere.

    Still scratching your heads? Yup, probably.

    Water vapor? That’s right. If you think man is putting anything in the atmosphere that is even close to doing what plain old water vapor is capable of doing, I suggest you stop when the Q tip counters resistance. Know what I mean?

    Secondly, to ” not Bruce”. Just pick mostly any European or eastern bloc nation. Most of them still use coal in their houses. But for some really big polluters, China or Russia , would be the worse. Feel free to disagree, I really don’t care. It’s not as if you really take the subject seriously. Especially not when it doesn’t fit your agenda.

    Gentlemen , I hope this answers your questions, especially yours Mr Bad. Do you still think Man accounts for over half of the greenhouse gasses. Now you have had a chance to reflect. I will be waiting with baited breath for your answer.

    By the way any numbers at this point would be meaningless. I hope you agree!!

  33. Skogs

    Good, lord I am not even supposed to be here…I was just Googling Hansen’s name to see what he said on 60 Minutes like a week ago. Hansen, by the way, is the name of NASA scientist that started this thread.

    For my soliloquy I would like to define a few terms:
    1) Greenhouse gases – gases that trap the heat (in the form of infrared radiation) within the Earth’s atmosphere.
    2) Climate Change – Global warming is a misnomer because we don’t know what is going to happen if anything at all…it could be warm some places…but my money is that Europe freezes.

    Now I was just at a talk yesterday where a scientist was talking about a few confirmed pieces of evidence that scare the pants of me…points not generally embraced by the media since they aren’t as gut-wrenching to think about as 4 polar bears, which were found by Inuit hunters above the arctic circle, that drowned after they attempted to swim 400 from the arctic icepack to land (a polar bear can swim 100 miles apparently) since the is so little remaining sea ice.

    No, this scientific talk was far more mundane. We talked about ice cores and carbonaceous sea critter remains…the point of the talk was that multiple lines of evidence point to the fact that present CO2 levels are way above the global average of the last 3 million years and about what they were 5 million years ago when it was 4 degrees Celsius warmer on average (now the reason why 4 degrees is a big deal is because the average Earth temperature is only 15 degrees Celsius – 15 degrees above freezing. So the amount of energy required to heat the entire global air mass and the ground in direct contact with it as well as the top few hundred meters by is immense). And the CO2 levels could double in the next century if we continue to maintain current global trends in economic growth, which would be outside of the scope of anything seen since the Permian extinction 11 million years ago…when it was so hot that the bottom of the ocean was the warmer than it’s currently at than the surface of our ocean today.

    Now I agree that CO2 is not solely responsible for the greenhouse effect. Water vapor has a huge effect (but it also makes clouds which reflect light as well which cools the Earth); methane gas burped out by cows and termites and released by the melting permafrost is even worse than CO2; and so are CFCs, which also conveniently defile the Earth’s ozone layer and therefore destroys the Earth’s natural sunscreen. But of that list CO2 is something that we as humans are having a particularly heavy-handed effect on right now, which is obvious due to its outrageous concentration.

    And because of that CO2 increase, we have the potential to indirectly affect some of those other more powerful greenhouse gases. When the CO2 traps heat it could warm the ocean to the point that so much water evaporates that even more heat is trapped in the atmosphere – more moisture could also mean more storms. And this new round of heating could melt the permafrost above the arctic circle, which contains enough methane gas to potential destabilize the entire global climate control process.

    Now there are a great deal of mights, coulds and potentials that I purposely scattered throughout that whole last paragraph simply because none of us are omnipotent and science is, and will admit to being, an imperfect art. Therefore we will never know what will result from this massive atmospheric experiment until it actually happens. But what we do know is that the US is the biggest producer of CO2 of any nation on Earth. To be sure the Clean Water Act and Clean Air Act have improved the state of certain aspects of the environment, but CO2 is not classified as a pollutant and is not therefore unregulated. So it can come from coal…gas…wood…natural gas…heating oil…corn pellets…whatever. And the US is the single biggest consumer of energy on the Earth.

    We need to accept that fact and not whine that the other country’s are included in the Kyoto protocol. The rest of the world looks to us for leadership…less and less as we seem to anger more and more people…But to be a real leader you need to actually be innovative and visionary rather than stubborn and close-minded. To do this the US needs to recognize that we don’t know all the details to be sure…but the evidence is alarming enough that we might want to reconsider our position. For instance, if it’s dark out and raining I don’t drive faster! I slow down and take it easy until it becomes clear that I am safe.

    But the Bush administration has stifled the debate that might lead to the very innovation that created planes, the telephone, put us on the moon, etc. Bush didn’t cause climate change…it’s been brewing for 150 years since the Industrial Revolution first began to change our global atmosphere at a detectable level…but he has crushed the very element that a democracy requires to thrive, grow and lead…transparency.

    I apologize for any incoherency…I’ve been summoned to dinner for 3rd time and that’s a warning sing I won’t ignore.

  34. Allen Lipscomb

    I might be ready to eat a little crow and admit I don’t know everything. However, after reading a condensed virsion of the Koyoto protocol and then all subsequent links, my head really hurts.

    This is from Fox news.
    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,188176,00.html

    This is well ..just read
    http://www.junkscience.com/MSU_Temps/Kyoto_Count_Up.htm

    This tells about Kyoto and then gives links to everything on both sides of the argument
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kyoto_Protocol

    I would ask that people delve past their political viewpoints I have tried and admit to being really confused. Nobody says the same thing.

    The points I was originally trying to bring up ie aerosols, in the stratosphere cooling the planet then thinning the ozone layer leading to increased temp, was actually discussed, but not to the depth I would have liked.
    Still I am big enough to admit I have some more studying to do.

    I will end by saying I am still a fan of George Bush and think he was right in not signing for the reason he gave. (“This is a challenge that requires a 100 percent effort; ours, and the rest of the world’s. The world’s second-largest emitter of greenhouse gases is China. Yet, China was entirely exempted from the requirements of the Kyoto Protocol. India and Germany are among the top emitters. Yet, India was also exempt from Kyoto. . . . America’s unwillingness to embrace a flawed treaty should not be read by our friends and allies as any abdication of responsibility. To the contrary, my administration is committed to a leadership role on the issue of climate change. . . . . Our approach must be consistent with the long-term goal of stabilizing greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere.” Whitehouse.gov President Bush Discusses Global Climate Change.) That was from the third link.

    Now, as I am dog tired, I will bid you good night.

  35. Allen, I’m done arguing with you. After three attempts to get you to provide a number, any number, you have still failed to do so. In fact, you made the same argument again– you basically said that water vapor is the strongest gas, and then claimed humans don’t make half of it, again providing no numbers whatsoever.

    You have also assumed I don’t know anything about greenhouse gases, which is a strawman argument at best.

    Frankly, trying to get you to back up your claim is tiresome and pointless.

  36. Your Name's Not Bruce?

    So I’ve done a little research as Allen Lipscomb suggested, even though, to quote him, “it’s not as if I take this subject seriously. Especially when it does’t fit (my) agenda.” My “agenda”, such as it is , is to accurately support my assertions of the United States’ position in the list of “big polluters” that he mentions in his argument. My source for the following information is the World Resources Insitute. Their site is:

    http://earthtrends.wri.org

    Data is for 2002, the most recent year they had listed. The top four countries in terms of total CO2 emissions are:

    #1 United States 5.773 million metric tons
    #2 China 3.783 ” ” ”
    #3 Russian Fed 1.533 ” ” ”
    #4 Japan 1.201 ” ” ”

    Per capita CO2 emissions for the United States is 19.92 metric tonnes per person. There are five countries with per capita emission levels higher than the US but their populations are low, making their total emissions comparitively low. They are Qatar (36.52 tonnes), Kuwait (25.33), United Arab Emirates (23.62), Bahrain (21.80), and Luxembourg (?!) (21.60).

    But at this point, to quote Allen Lipscomb “by the way any numbers at this point would be meaningless. I hope you agree.” Well, I don’t agree. These numbers show your assertions regarding the “big polluter” status of the United States were incorrect. The validty or invalidity of my statements should depend on the proof I submit, not any “political” stance I may have. Same with yours.

  37. Allen Lipscomb

    Hey Not Bruce, you can add all the CO2 emmissions together and it still wouldn’t make a hill of beans next to the no 1 green house gas water vapor.

    Guess what? CO2 does it gets converted back to C and O2 for the most part what happen to SO2 one of the nastiest gasses from volcanic action add water vapor and sunlight and you get H2SO4 add a little CLO and N2 and O3 guess what happens? O3 rapidly diminishes. That would be ozone getting removed.
    I happen to think this is possibly just a little more important in regulating than most people. I just can’t guess “why” is my problem .

    Do you remember when the Kuwaiti oil fields were on fire back in GW1? How many million barrels of oil went up in smoke in a very short time? Must have pumped several million tons of CO2 in the atmosphere all at once.

    It didn’t even cause a blip in the world’s temperature, yet one volcano can. Admittedly, the temperature goes down to begin with sulfuric acid tends to reflect quite a lot of light before it reacts with chlorine nitrogen and ozone to become well increased skin cancer to begin with.

    Sunlight can be a bit harsh without proper shielding, don’t you think.

    Nice numbers by the way. Just proved me right. The USA is really in the front when it comes to polution control. All the resources we use (still not feeling guilty) for our quality of life.

    Lastly, just for you Mr Bad, nothing has changed. I still don’t think you know much about greenhouse gasses. My original statement was, I think, yes, just re read it: Man producing 50% of all the greenhouse gasses was a load of crap. Nothing has changed in that department.

    Do have a nice day, won’t you gentlemen?

  38. Your Name's Not Bruce?

    Allen;

    First I must apologize; my posts asking you for “your” list of big polluters should have been directed to JL. Mea Culpa. We now resume our regularly scheduled post….

    And my numbers prove you right how? My figures showed that the US is the country with the largest amount of CO2 emissions and one of the highest rates of emission per capita. These are not good numbers. None of my figures dealt with pollution control. Please explain.

  39. Allen Lipscomb

    Easy, Not Bruce. This was the first thing that was questioned in my second post if you look back.

    Please tell me we have not been arguing about a different perspective. I have already admitted we all could do better, but the US is leading the pack as far as I’m concerned with emission controls on autos, scrubbers on power plants, and most large manufacturing plants.

    We have a large population living a lifestyle the rest of the planet envies. Most people care deeply about the environment, me included by the way, as an avid outdoorsman myself.

    I am just a little sick of the US getting blamed for everything, and the present administration being the worst of the bunch which is simply just not true.

    After Hurricane Katrina, a lot of power plants were taken out of commission, literally taken out, so to make up for lost power, President Bush had to make a hard decision. Let people go without power or increase the amount of pollutants from a few old plants to make up the difference for a while.

    For this, he is labeled as a president in bed with ” Big Power, Big Oil,Big Business” , and the almighty dollar is the bottom line, all the time, every time, which is just not the case.

    Now I have no idea where you live, but Hurricane Ivan stomped on my town and we went without power for a while. Some people went without for weeks. It is not exactly a pleasant situation, except at night No light pollution, setting a scope up was great. It took everyone’s mind off the carnage that surrounded us during the daylight hours.

    Sorry, got off the point. Anyway, I hope that answers your question.

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