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> Global Warming, Is it the end of the world?
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CelticRadio 
Posted: 14-Apr-2006, 08:39 AM
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Well, this is a bit odd for me to post a message of this content because it was not too long ago that I honestly thought that Global Warming was something that someone made up to create more profits.

Over the past year I have watched this topic on the news develop until at this point events are happening faster than scientist can even report on.

With the arctic poles melting, hurricanes flourishing, extreme & dangereous weather on the rise and the atlantic conveyor belt slowing all signs point towards the beginning of climate change now. We might have already reached the point of no return and everyone needs to be aware of what is down the road for us and our children.

Take a message from the Arctic Inuit tribe in this article:

http://www.amhersttimes.com/index.php?opti...=1013&Itemid=27

View all of the articles on Arctic melting on google:

http://news.google.com/news?hl=en&tab=wn&i...=arctic+melting

What is really scary is that scientist have probably under-estimated the amount of sea rise and warming because of failing to include certain unknown factors until now.

Like a big switch, the earth is making a change and while I am not trying to say this is the end of the world, I think everyone needs to step back and examine what is really happening here before we are confronted with a situation that could become very unmanagable very fast!


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Senara 
Posted: 14-Apr-2006, 09:11 AM
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Scientists have been warning us of this fact since the late 70's/early 80's. This planet has become one giant dumping ground for our now disposeable societies that it's no wonder the climate is changing at such an accelerated rate. Here in the US, we've had the technology to burn cleaner fuels, reduce fossil fuel consumption, re-use key materials and yet it all ends up down the road in the dump heap. Why? Because we like things to be cheap, to not change. Everything must be in our hands now and if it's not we'll bitch about it.

What we should be doing is telling our representatives to quit listening to the lobbists for a change and actually listen to those that voted for them. One can only write so many letters and feel useless because no one really takes the time to read them. It will take many voices to get the point across that we're fed up with the lies that they keep feeding us.

In this case the lie is "Oh the planet's doing just fine...there's nothing to worry about." Ya...this coming from the Oil/Gas companies. But what do I know....I'm not getting a 350+ million pension plan, use of the corporate jet and my country club dues paid for my pension plan.


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Antwn 
Posted: 14-Apr-2006, 06:09 PM
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There is a thread on Ye Olde Celtic Pub on this subject too if you want to read a few more posts. I mentioned a 60 minutes broadcast a few weeks ago where a leading NASA scientist complained about not being able to have published any of his findings in public journals until they'd been edited by the White House. He agreed to an interview because he was sick of the situation, and even then a "propaganda officer" (for lack of better term) from NASA was there off camera to babysit him during the interview. They also showed exerpts from his papers before and after editing.

Public response is controlled when the public is denied authoritative information without tampering. No one is sure what to believe or what is true and even those who are sure aren't allowed to publish it without a panoply of government equivocations added.

The government doesn't trust the public with information and the public doesn't trust the government's management of the situation. Truly a sign of downfall - or if that's too strong, then dysfunction. Remember Katrina when the government says "trust us we'll handle it".

In addition, its not just a US problem. For example, the world cannot afford to allow burgeoning economies like China and India, both with huge populations, to emulate the style of growth the US has had with its accompanying levels of CO2 emissions, though I don't know what can be done about it. Those countries' huge energy demands will only increase. China is the worlds fastest growing economy.

Since atmospheric gasses don't remain over the countries which produce them, solutions require an unprecedented cooperation between countries and adherence to agreed upon policies and treaties.

Recently I was watching a travel video about Greece and the Greek islands. In it a helicopter flew over most of the country so it showed Greece from above. It was absolutely beautiful, but what was also interesting to me was to see the number of solar panels on top of the houses. Looked like about every fourth house/building. Of course Greece gets the sunlight to make them efficient, but it was fascinating to see.


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Shadows 
Posted: 15-Apr-2006, 05:56 AM
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There is a thread in the Grove about the end date on the Mayan Calander that also supports this.

Mac5 thanks for that link to the Inuit, I had read it and lost the link!

Also take into consideration the increase in volcanic activity and earth quakes ( the last real big one that produced the sunami) tilted the earth off its true axis and cause it to wabble more then it already does.

All these things combined make a good case for a major change, maybe not an end as such.


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Aaediwen 
Posted: 15-Apr-2006, 12:39 PM
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I'm finally starting to see a shift to at least Hybrid vehicles on the road, and I smile. I understand that the migratin to cleaner fuels will take time, and hybrids still rely on gasoline. It's a step in the right direction, and I only hope that it's not too little too late. I also wonder if it would be possible to construct some kind of atmospheric scrubber to attempt to restore balance. Also, how much would such action even help our scenerio at this point?


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reddrake79 
Posted: 16-Apr-2006, 06:38 PM
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better energy use is a good thing, cleaner fuels are a good thing, humans don't affect the earth to such a degree as to cause climate change. Our global polution pales in comparison to how much the earth puts out from volcanoes, evaporating oceans, etc. In local places (L.A.) yes we can affect local environment.

Has anyone ever read [/U] State of Fear [U] by Michael Chrichton? Excellent book.
He thouroughly researched this topic and wrote a fictional novel that is well documented and footnoted when it pertains to scientific readings.

Actually I remember the scientists predicting the coming iceage instead of global warming when I was growing up.


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Antwn 
Posted: 18-Apr-2006, 07:26 PM
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QUOTE (Aaediwen @ 15-Apr-2006, 12:39 PM)
I'm finally starting to see a shift to at least Hybrid vehicles on the road, and I smile.  I understand that the migratin to cleaner fuels will take time, and hybrids still rely on gasoline.  It's a step in the right direction, and I only hope that it's not too little too late.  I also wonder if it would be possible to construct some kind of atmospheric scrubber to attempt to restore balance.  Also, how much would such action even help our scenerio at this point?

Hello Aediwen - it may be a more a political/economic situation since alternative fuels already exist. Ask Willie Nelson, he already has a company which markets them in several gas stations out west. It requires no alteration to your existing engine to use the fuels either and provides another market for farmers. Forgot the name of it.

I'd thought you were a woman all this time until I looked at your profile! Guess its because I'm studying Welsh and in that language "en" is a feminine ending.
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greenldydragon 
Posted: 19-Apr-2006, 12:29 PM
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There was a show on National Geographic (I think it was their station, might have been the History Channel since a lot of their stuff has to do with science) about how global warming might actually lead to an ice age. However, I was also watching a science show with my mother that talked about the weakening of the earth's magnetic field (or whatever it is called) and how more radiation from the sun is coming in, but also about scientific research that supports a pattern of a weakening field before the poles switch. The north and the south poles aren't always magnetically in the same place. Evidence from centuries past show that as the poles are in the process of switching, the field weakens extremely and then once they are switched, it returns to its' normal strength. http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/20...thmagfield.html What I just talked about may be somewhat off topic, but Antwn you mentioned Willie Nelson's gas stations, I think you might be talking about ethanol or possibly biofuel. I did a report on the topic of Alternative fuels and one of the most interesting statistics I found was that if 4% of the world's deserts were covered in solar panels, the electricity garnered would be able to supply the entire world's electricity..This link has a bunch of news stories about alternative fuels, including the one I got this statistic from. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/in_depth/sci_te...rgy/default.stm


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Antwn 
Posted: 20-Apr-2006, 07:08 PM
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If true, the desert idea seems like a good one, particularly in remote areas of the Sahara. Might also be an economic boon for countries in that region to export electricity if the idea is feasible and they can get companies to invest in its development. The first step is for them to become politically stable enough warrant it.
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le pwner 
Posted: 23-Apr-2006, 08:18 AM
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Though we might be helping it along, global warming could be just the natural changing of temperatures. If you look at past temperatures, like over millions of years, the climate has constantly been changing. Its been reasonably constant recently (in terms of how long the earth has been around) so weather is about due for a drastic change. It is something to be concerned about though.


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Elspeth 
Posted: 23-Apr-2006, 10:09 AM
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QUOTE (le pwner @ 23-Apr-2006, 08:18 AM)
Though we might be helping it along, global warming could be just the natural changing of temperatures. If you look at past temperatures, like over millions of years, the climate has constantly been changing. Its been reasonably constant recently (in terms of how long the earth has been around) so weather is about due for a drastic change. It is something to be concerned about though.

As one with a degree in Conservation, this is the fist place I always go to as well when I hear 'doomsday' reports. The first question I ask myself is- are these changes in relation to recent time or geologic time.

But, either way.... Western civilization (btw, I read that when Gandhi asked what he thought about Western Civilization, he responded he thought it was a good idea) anyway, WC has become so removed from the land, the weather, the elements weve come to believe our technology or city/suburban living can insulate us from the mother nature. We buy our plots of land, build our houses and nothing external is supposed to mess with life the way we want to live it. People are continually building where it makes no sense to build. I saw it in a small scale in my work and we all saw it in what happened to New Orleans. I mean, to build a vast city below sea level? What happened when the hurricane came was cataclysmic to the people involved, but not a cataclysmic earth event.

Events abound and changes may be on the horizon, but, I have to wonder as to the perspective. Man has only been able to take extensive readings for the last, what 60 or so years? We really don't know if the changes are cataclysmic or part of the natural ways of the earth. I remember the hoopla in the 70s. The world was coming to an end because of all the catastrophic tornados.

But what we do know is the changes that could come about would be cataclysmic for our way of life as we know it. Nomadic societies just picked up the tent stakes when the well ran dry. Its a bit more complicated now. It'd be tough for the entire population of the seaboards to pick up stakes and move inland.

What lies ahead may not the end of the earth, but the end of living as we know it.
Humans have not had to adapt to their environment for a long time. We've become arrogant in the belief we can adapt the environment to suit our needs and wants. Always a dangerous supposition.

Im not sure I buy into the idea that man brought about the changes and that it is possible for man to shift it back. In the first place, where is back? The earth has been in a state of flux since its inception. We certainly have made a mess of many, many things and have a great deal to change. But I cant help but think, based on no real scientific fact, that we will doom ourselves to destruction with our wallowing ways long before man has the power to destruct earth.





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Shadows 
Posted: 23-Apr-2006, 10:18 AM
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It is not just the change in temps that cause alarm... it is the effect of that temp change to the artic ice, the cloud formations, the rainfall or lack there of!

Earth is ever evolving on her own, but what we spew or belch into the air and into the ground does and will have an effect on the overall climate and our quality of life...

Earth quakes and volcanic activity are natural, but the things man has done to mother earth are not!

Major change is coming... are you ready for it?
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Antwn 
Posted: 23-Apr-2006, 04:47 PM
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Good point Elspeth. There is no "back" and its not necessary to go there, its a good idea however not to despoil that which we depend on for life, regardless of what effect it does/doesn't have on global warming. As a Mom you can surely relate to the phrase "go clean up your room its a mess" - well our collective room is a biggie. Global warming or no, we still live amid our own poisons, even breathe and eat them.

Its not necessary to regress to teepee living, or eshew technologies - just alter them to be environmentally friendly, then we'll find out what the effects are. If then we discover warming is occurring independently of our actions, then we'll have to adapt as you said. Either way, what does seem obvious is that our current way of life is not sustainable, unless we like the drama of living in our own filth and tempting fate. The long term untenability of our own habits should be enough of a reason to alter them. Yet we're like little kids playing with matches in the yard during a drought saying "don't worry Mom, I won't start a fire".

I also agree with you that we'd destroy ourselves long before we'd do so to the Earth. We love the Earth as an abstraction, but fail to include ourselves as part of it. Your point about how we've insulated ourselves from it could be the cause or the expression of such alienation.

Anyway, enough pontificating....here's an interesting article I saw demonstrating Nature's resiliance. What's interesting to me is the assertion that the benefits to animals from the lack of human presence has been greater than the dangers to them of radiation.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/4923342.stm
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stoirmeil 
Posted: 24-Apr-2006, 11:35 AM
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I was trying to track down the quote from Ecclesiastes: "Generations come and generations go, but the earth abides." (Ecc. 1:4).

In so doing, I ran across citations for that wonderful 1949 novel by George Stewart, called "Earth Abides." I recommend it highly, by the way.

That led to this amazing website set up by some teacher out there who is doing a whole course on apocalyptic visions of the future, including this great old book. The Google tag was "End of the World Homework." Which is pretty thought-provoking. Just don't tell me your dog ate your homework -- or the tidal wave washed it away, or it was burned in the core of the mushroom cloud, or anything else. And it had better be typewritten. smile.gif

But it's a great website. I admire the teacher and I envy the kids taking the course.
http://www.surfturk.com/endoftheworld/0eowHWpage.html
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Elspeth 
Posted: 27-Apr-2006, 08:25 AM
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The earth does abide....

I am from a part of the US where the river was so polluted back in the 70's, it caught fire. But now, that same river is almost swimable. A National Park surrounds it. Canada geese used to be a rarity, now they're pests in some places. I went for a walk the other day and heard a flock of wild turkeys - only a few miles from a densely populated urban corridor. Hawks fly and hunt in the skies above our suburban houses. Eat real well too off of all the squirrels and songbirds. My city neighborhood is teaming with wildlife. I grew up in this same area. I remember how how sterile it was back in the late 60's and 70's. I remember the stench from the rubber plants 20 miles away on humid summer days.

We have made great strides. But, it just may be those were the easy ones. To make the changes necessary to combat the effects of fossile fuels is to change our society and our very way of life. I agree it needs to be done. I just don't believe those kinds of massive changes happen unless some cataclysimic event forces the issue. Are we all going to give up our cars? Are business people going to stop driving and flying all over the world? Are we going to give up factories and go back to cottage industries?

In truth, one of the best things that could happen to our ecosystem is for the price of gas to rise, worldwide, to twenty dollars a gallon. Great for the ecosystem - murder for the economy.

What's to be done? It seems modern human nature to squander resources. Rememeber the gas efficient cars of the 70's? How the heck did we go from that to SUV's and Hummers? As soon as everything lightens a bit, we opt for luxery and 'cool'.

How do we change that in time to keep from making this planet some place we don't want to live? Every little change helps, that is certianly true. And little changes can add up. But, is that only putting a band-aid on the ineveitible? What are we all, personally, willing to do? I know I drive more than I need to. Too many trips back and forth to three schools. It doesn't sound like much, but it adds up. My kids could walk, it isn't that far. But it is inconvienent for them. Not an excuse. Could make a change at least for the high schooler. The younger ones I drive because I don't trust my society with my children.

At least our church is close enough to walk to.
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