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View Diary: Not Nuclear, Again (142 comments)

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  •  Re (0+ / 0-)

    So, now instead of a 60 billion dollar program, now you have a 75 billion dollar program.

    Then why wouldn't you just want all of the money upfront?  What is the point of spreading it out over multiple years?  There's no reason why a loan program should have a constant recurring cost associated with it.  That's why they're called loans; they get paid back, and you loan the money to other people.

    Proving the sun will rise tomorrow? Yeah, it could be done, because we have satellites, and so even though it's dark, we know for a fact that the sun is still shining and the Earth is still spinning.

    How do you know 100% that you're interpreting the data correctly?  Or that there's not a roving black hole entering our solar system?  Or that the Large Hadron Collider isn't about to turn the Earth into a black hole or a ball of self-expanding Strange matter?  How do you know for a fact that our world isn't a gigantic alien Truman show, or some extradimensional child's computer simulation ant farm?

    Nothing is known 100%.  Which is my point.  But once you get to a high enough standard of evidence, you quit treating it like a mere hypothesis and start acting on it.

    What do you think the models are based on?

    First Principles.  I've seen the code.  What did you think the models are based on?

    •  Hmm . . . (0+ / 0-)

      I would think that the models would be based on . . .

      historical responses to different forcings

      among other things.

      WRT ending poverty for $40-60 billion per year, I see no point in arguing back and forth about the exact methodology. It doesn't affect our argument. If there are credible advocates arguing that, then it's reasonable to assume that it would be easily done for 10-20 times that (1-2 percent of world GDP), which is what is being proposed to be spent on preventing global warming.

      Yes, I suppose it's true that we don't know at 100% certainty that the sun will rise tomorrow, so I would agree that we can make decisions on less than 100% certainty. Ultimately we have to make some kind of societal determination about the likelihood of catastrophic global warming. I understand where you guys are coming from -- if I was 99% sure that we were ALL GOING TO DIE if we don't stop emitting greenhouse gases RIGHT NOW, I would support doing ANYTHING to stop it also.

      I just think the degree of certainty is nowhere near there at this point.

      •  Re (0+ / 0-)

        I would think that the models would be based on historical responses to different forcings among other things.

        They're not.  They're based on first principles; do you know what that means?  If not, I can get you some reading material on the subject.

        The models are validated against historical data, but the calculations are almost entirely first principles.  There are a few statistical models in there for things that don't simulate well (namely, cloud formation response, which is a chaotic process); those are the primary source of uncertainty in the models.  But you can swing cloud formation in either direction, and the general results are still the same.

        I just think the degree of certainty is nowhere near there at this point.

        The experts in the field overwhelmingly disagree with you on the cost/benefit curve.  You're certainly free to disappear with the experts if you choose.

        •  Wow, so according to you (0+ / 0-)

          we've mathematically deduced from "first principles" AGW, with no need to actually consult the historical record other than to "validate" our deductions. That really makes me feel a lot more certain about things. Not.

          The "experts" in the field do not agree about anything with respect to the cost/benefit curve. Science is usually agnostic about political choices, as it should be.

          •  Are you even reading what I'm writing? (0+ / 0-)

            we've mathematically deduced from "first principles" AGW, with no need to actually consult the historical record other than to "validate" our deductions. That really makes me feel a lot more certain about things. Not.

            Are you even reading what I'm writing?  I pointed out that the models are just one line of evidence -- which is why I brought up comparing planetary responses to natural forcings as an example of another (out of many).

            And why the hell don't you want historical validation of the models?  Don't get upset because you misunderstood how they work.

            And lastly, what is your problem with first principles physics models?  Is your argument that our very understanding of the laws of physics is in error?

            The "experts" in the field do not agree about anything with respect to the cost/benefit curve. Science is usually agnostic about political choices, as it should be.

            IPCC WG3.  Read it.  Or at least look at the author list.  It's a mix of scientists and economists.

            •  OK, I guess we have a semantic dispute (0+ / 0-)

              between "models" and "projections". The original point was that no matter how you cut it catastrophic climate change is a (very) educated guess about the future, as opposed to death from poverty, which is a guaranteed occurrence both now and into the future. Same thing with the mechanisms -- we can theorize that because the temperature goes up by X, that this will mean that this or that geographic area will experience drought and/or famine, which will result on Y numbers of people dying, but it's ultimately still a prediction. It has not come to pass, and just as other dire predictions that seemed inevitable at one time -- the "Population Bomb" for example -- never came to pass, it's entirely possible that the dire predictions associated with climate change will never come to pass, whether or not we act (and vice-versa, it's possible that it will all come to pass even if we act).

              I stand corrected that the predictions of catastrophic change are not just based on models, but also on other kinds of information and analysis. It was a semantic error on my part, because I was in my mind using "models" as a shorthand for predictions.

              You are wrong about the role of IPCC on political/policy questions:

              [The IPCC's] role as defined in the "Principles Governing IPCC Work" is "to assess on a comprehensive, objective, open and transparent basis the scientific, technical and socio-economic information relevant to understanding the scientific basis of risk of human-induced climate change, its potential impacts and options for adaptation and mitigation.

              IPCC reports should be neutral with respect to policy, although they may need to deal objectively with scientific, technical and socio-economic factors relevant to the application of particular policies.

              http://www.ipcc.ch/...

              •  The IPCC reports don't advocate a particular (0+ / 0-)

                policy.  But they do state what the consequences of each given policy will be, and the margins of error and understanding on each of them.  That's the reason why economists were retained for it.

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