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What's wrong with a bit of global warming?

  1. Apr 24, 2008 #1
    It's seems to be the accepted thing that global warming is bad, but is it such a bad thing? The dinosaurs certaintly prefered a more warmer climate.

    Look at the facts:-

    1. The ice caps are melting - so what?
    What we lose on the south pole we gain on the north pole, we might lose a few tiny islands in the pacific, but whole swathes of frozen land around the northern tundra will will become habitable and farmable, not to mention more oil which wil become accessable.

    2. The earth will become warmer.

    Is that a bad thing??? Lets face it, 90% of people when they get a chance to go on holiday, chose to do so in a warmer climate, you don't see too many flocking to the poles do you?

    People are just frightened of change, and always think it will be a bad thing, but there is not a great of evidence that the good aspects of change will outweigh the bad aspects of change.

    One major aspect of global warming is that we will need to burn less of our precious and limited resourse of fossil fuels, you would think people would be jumping for joy at the prospect of global warming yet we seem to be dreading it like the plague.

    A futher huge bonus, I would imagine, is that the extra CO2 would aid crop growth to feed our population, much of which is on the brink of starvation. Yes you might expect some climate change, some of which would be 'good' and some of which would be 'bad', but it is just a question of adapting to the new enviroment.
    For every drought there is a flood, that has always been the case.

    There may well be evidence for global warming (and quite a few people question that anyway), but I am not sure if there is scientific evidence that that is a bad thing.

    You rarely hear people complain it is too warm do you? It's usually the cold people complain about.

    Yes there may be a few regions that become like the Sahara, but a lot of other regions would be able to plant two crops a year, and the most likely region to become like the Sahara, is, well the Sahara, so no great loss there then.

    I remember when I was at school the big fear was the next ice age, you would think people would be jumping for joy now!!!!
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 25, 2008 #2
    Yea, we didn't really need all those costal cities anyway.
  4. Apr 25, 2008 #3


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  5. Apr 25, 2008 #4


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    Well the question has been raised in the past-

    Who are we to decide the climate we currently live in is the ideal climate for all humans and animals (present and future) and it should be kept this way at all costs?
  6. Apr 25, 2008 #5
    Quite frankly that is just being alarmist.
    Some of the claims made laughable.
    The Ganges drying up??? The Ganges is dependant of the shape of the planet, it is not
    going to disappear fact.

    There is no scientific balance in the video, no comparisons of lands lost and lands gained.

    It's alarmist rubbish quite frankly it is a hollywood type production with a man with an incredibly deep voice to try and make it sound authentic.

    Man has constantly coped admirably with climate change, with a lot less knowledge and
    knowhow than we have now.

    Guess what? I used to live inside a Glacier? So how is Glaciers melting a bad thing???????

    Do you miss the lost city of Atlantis? I don't.

    And just think of the billion of tonnes of fossil fuels we would save?

    We would not even have to have wars over oil. We would halve our energy consumption
    at a stroke.

    Notice it immediately jumps into it's sales pitch at the end, selling magazines seems to take
    priority over scientific balance, and like newspapers, they know alarmist nonsense sells very well.
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2008
  7. Apr 25, 2008 #6


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    (Breaking my rule of never getting involved in enviroment arguements.)
    It's better to think of it as climate change. Even though on average the planet will warm some areas will get colder - like western Europe if the gulf stream turns off, some places will get a lot wetter, some a lot drier.

    For the planet it's really not a big deal - it's just a bit inconvenient for people who have chosen to build cities in certain locations.

    And of course it's not all doom and gloom - a local housing development here in Vancouver is claiming it will be necessary to cope with the massive influx of refugees when sea levels rise 2m. An imaginative reason to build some more high-rise condos!
  8. Apr 25, 2008 #7
    The odd flooded city is no problem, we have plenty of time to build new ones, and plenty of
    unemployed people to build them, it really is no big deal, cities come and go.
    I lot of our cities would benefit enourmously from being demolished and rebuilt.

    Also underwater cities are fantastic for marine life.
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2008
  9. Apr 25, 2008 #8
    Your comment about Atlantis is one of the most ignorant things I've ever heard. Anyway, ignoring that...

    To be honest, I'd rather not have my house destroyed and be forced to move elsewhere. I'd also like to still be able to go on vacation in South Carolina.

    In case you didn't know, rebuilding cities costs MONEY. The government can't just pull money out of its ass and use it for whatever it wants to; otherwise my parents wouldn't have just lost $20k out of my college fund, would they?
  10. Apr 25, 2008 #9
    Modern building are not expensive to construct and the process can be done on a gradual
    phased basis, allowing no new building in threatened area. Cities are constantly being reconstructed anyway, there is little in my city over 100 years old, and what there is of such an age is inapppropiate for modern life. It is actually much cheaper to build on a green
    field site. If you are taling of costs then the cost of preventing global warming will be enormous when compared to the cost of the gradual migration of a few threatened cities.
    Only a tiny fraction of the worlds cites would be affected anyway, it's not worth loosing sleep over. look how many cites WWII leveled.

    I don't see how your parents losing you college fund money comes into this, how did they
    manage that? Are you blaming the loss on global warming or something?
  11. Apr 25, 2008 #10


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    As far as the overall habitability of earth goes, it may well be an open question, but 'fear' of change is close, but not quite right. Change really is painful in some cases, as implied in the sarcastic post #2.
  12. Apr 25, 2008 #11
    You are forgetting that accepting change can be a lot less painful than trying to
    prevent it. If CO2 causes global warming there is nothing we can do to stop it anyway,
    just slow the rate down.
  13. Apr 25, 2008 #12
    Read my post. I made no connection between that and global warming.

    I don't know which would be more expensive: moving a few dozen million people and rebuilding their homes and businesses somewhere else, or trying to slow down or prevent the effects of global warming. I just think it would be really impractical to try to make all those people move to a new area and build new cities, and it doesn't seem like something the government or people would be ready to do.
  14. Apr 25, 2008 #13


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    Here is a two-parter take on this.

    1] There is a growing belief that
    a] the world's wildlife will ultimately depend on mankind's treatment of it. Climate is only one piece of a much larger puzzle. (A more obvious way of seeing our effect is in how we pave, pollute or otherwise erode - their habitats physically).

    b] we will have the power - and that cause us to believe we should be responsible for what happens to it. However it end up, it will be because we either actively made it or passively let it become that way. Species will go extinct unless we act. ()

    Now, so far I've only established how we will be affecting it, not why we should affect it any particluar direction.

    2] And the why is simply that we make the decision that we want to preserve it.

    There is an elegant term for it that escapes me, but we effectively decide to be Conscientious Sheperds of the Earth.
  15. Apr 25, 2008 #14
    I agree on the standpoint of someone not involved in world crisis. It does seam, that global warming wouldn't be a big deal. Before their were borders and such things, people would just move, or farm somewhere else. The real problems are partly due to the globalization, domestication, and overpopulation of planet earth.

    The planet in real time, now, is experiencing challenges because of climate change. Farmers own their land, and cannot just move north, or south and plant. All the available land is owned, and changes in the weather patterns offset the balance of power, mess up projected production, and cause starvation. Also, places like australia aren't getting enough rain.

    From a naturalist perspective, this is natures way of working, this is how evolution takes place. From the perspective of others, there are statistics that show many people suffering and many to suffer in the future. What's new, nothing; just you daily struggle to survive.

    On the other hand, I have somewhat of a problem with the idea of unnaturally changing the composition of our atmosphere to this kind of level. What are you going to do about it though?
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2008
  16. Apr 25, 2008 #15


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    It is.

    But of people are deciding they don't want to win the evolutionary race at the cost of much of the rest of the planet losing.
  17. Apr 25, 2008 #16
    Getting people to move would not be much of a problem, most of them do not have the
    correct breathing apperatus to breathe underwater.
    The areas affected would be relatively small and the changes very gradual, it really could
    be done with the minimum of cost and disruption. Also there would be great savings to be
    made from these new well planned cities, in terms of transportation etc...
    You would simply gradually stop maintaining the lowest lying areas and use the money
    saved to begin the building of new cities. I have seen great swathes of my city
    rebuilt over the years so only a small percentage of the new bluilding would be be at
    an extra cost, and indeed it is *much* more expensive to reuild then to start from
    a greenfield site.
    Indeed I expect that China alone is building cites at a much faster rate than would be
    required to keep up with sea level rises. Indeed it is bulding two power stations every
    week, thats 100 a year. Now if that is 1 power station per city thats 100 new cities
    a year I would imagine. Or in 100 years 10,000 new cities.
    Those figures may be inaccurate but clearly rebuilding a few cities is 'no big deal'.

    Given the astronomical, and futile cost of trying to stop global warming it is the sensible
    thing to do.

    This is a little out of date
    but china plans to build 400 cities in 20 years.
  18. Apr 26, 2008 #17
    For example, look how well the Roman Empire dealt with it. Or Easter Island.

    So we'd just put New York in Quebec, Havana in Mississippi, and Jerusalem in Ukraine. Do you really think this would be easier then building a bunch of solar cells and windmills? We are not talking about "a few threatened areas", it's every city in the world that has a sea port.

    Name one time in history that you had massive migrations of population without resulting wars.
  19. Apr 26, 2008 #18


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    How was climate change responsible for the fall of the Roman Empire and destruction of Easter Island's society?
  20. Apr 26, 2008 #19
    You don't need to put New York in Quebec, you can put in in Ohio or whatever, so no
    need for a war, people emigrate/migrate all the time.
  21. Apr 27, 2008 #20
    Colder temperatures in the Roman empire had three results:

    1) Reduced crop harvests. This made food expensive, forced more people to work the land, and reduced tax yields that had maintained the empire. (Solders, roads, education, ect.)

    2) Germanic barbarians migrated into the south, seeking food and less harsh lands. The Romans attempted to integrate them into their society, (often replacing the lost solders, at lower pay.) but this was unstable, and the barbarians often revolted or became raiders. This activity inhibited long distance trade within the empire, further lowering living standards and tax yields.

    3) Plague. Crops, animals, and people were all weakened by the colder climate, making them more susceptible to disease. Cities routinely had to close their ports to resist plague, and the remaining soldiers who might have protected the trade routes were themselves feared as plague carriers.

    Without trade or military control, the empire became meaningless - there was no reason for cities to support it, and thus (western) Rome collapsed.

    Of course whole books have been written about the fall of Rome, and their are a thousand factors and theories I've left out, but climate clearly set the stage for all else.


    Easter Island is much simpler. They cut down all the trees on the island, turning it from forest to grassland. Without wood, they were stranded on the island (no more boats) and their society collapsed.

    Not whole cities worth of people! Look at Israel. Look at the US reaction to Mexican immigrants. Even if sea levels rise slowly, cities will not just give up and move - they will try to fight the water until things suddenly collapse as happened in New Orleans. Then there will be shockwaves of refugees fleeing one city after another. Even if the US avoids war, the rest of the world won't, and we will get dragged into it because we depend on the rest of the world for so much.
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2008
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