Carbon trading markets collapse

posted at 10:01 am on February 25, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

Before the US adopts the silly cap-and-trade “market” approach to curbing carbon emissions, perhaps we should see what the recession has done to the European carbon market.  The EU has spent a lot of money rediscovering the laws of supply and demand in this recession.  Instead of making carbon emissions a scarcity, the economic collapse has created a glut of indulgences:

A year ago European governments allocated a limited number of carbon emission permits to their big polluters. Businesses that reduce pollution are allowed to sell spare permits to ones that need more. As demand outstrips this capped supply, and the price of permits rises, an incentive grows to invest in green energy. Why buy costly permits to keep a coal plant running when you can put the cash into clean power instead?

All this only works as the carbon price lifts. As with 1924 Château Lafite or Damian Hirst’s diamond skulls, scarcity and speculation create the value. If permits are cheap, and everyone has lots, the green incentive crashes into reverse. As recession slashes output, companies pile up permits they don’t need and sell them on. The price falls, and anyone who wants to pollute can afford to do so. The result is a system that does nothing at all for climate change but a lot for the bottom lines of mega-polluters such as the steelmaker Corus: industrial assistance in camouflage.

“I don’t know why industrials would miss this opportunity,” said one trader last week. “They are using it to compensate for the tightening of credit and the slowdown, to pay for redundancies.”

All of which has set off what Julian Glover calls the “Great Pollution Fire Sale”.  He blames the EU for being too generous in its allocation of carbon credits, but the allocation was calculated during economic growth.  The EU wanted to make sure that the cap-and-trade system didn’t interfere with the economy, and so made sure that the energy producers didn’t get disincentivized enough to create artifical energy shortages that would have stalled growth.

Now, of course, Europe has all sorts of excess capacity in energy production thanks to the economic downturn of the past few months.  The cap-and-trade system essentially subsidizes non-production, and the energy producers have cashed in.  Only now, those credits aren’t worth warm spit, because no one else is ready to start producing enough to worry about exceeding carbon caps.  It’s a perfectly-formed system for failure; no one would part with the credits in boom times, and no one will buy them in a bust.

Part of this comes from the fact that the commodity being traded has no essential value anyway.  It’s air, the ultimate vaporware product.  There is no scarcity in carbon dioxide, and so markets for it will always be artificial and contrived.  Glover’s criticism about the amount of credits is akin to rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic.  The problem isn’t the credits, but the falsity of the entire operation.

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There is no reliable scientific proof that growing trees in Uganda is going to lessen the amount of carbon in the air over China.

coldwarrior on February 25, 2009 at 11:35 AM

Why would we want to lessen the amount of CO2 in the air in the first place? If man put ZERO CO2 into the air, it doesn’t matter, CO2 does not drive climate. Take a look at this chart to see how much CO2 is in the air. Now keep in mind that the tiny amount of CO2 that is in is almost all naturally occurring and not from any human activity.

So of the tiny amount of CO2 in the air, only a tiny percentage of that is due to man’s activity. Thus, every penny spent on reducing CO2 in the air is a penny wasted. There is simply no reason to do it.

Maxx on February 25, 2009 at 11:52 AM

What I still find amazing is that some people actually believe there is scientific evidence of global warming. Any information that they have on the subject came straight from the evening news on MSM, so that’s all they know. Pathetic, actually. Maybe another couple record cold winters will convince them but I doubt it.

JimK on February 25, 2009 at 12:01 PM

Maxx on February 25, 2009 at 11:52 AM

Maxx,
That is somewhat misleading. I’m not a global warming advocate, but that analysis leaves out a lot of CO2. Gigatons of it transfer between the atmosphere, land and oceans annually. More exists in the ocean than in the air, and huge reservoirs exist in terrestrial limestone. It is an extremely complex system, and is only minimally understood. (What we do know about the global carbon fluxes are not balanced.)

However, there is the optimistic view. The Russian research that indicates we are headed into the downturn in solar activity (called a Milankovitch cycle) which would be leading to an ice age, could be correct. In that case all the CO2 we pump in could be what saves our grandchildren from freezing their butts off.

;)

Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 12:02 PM

That is somewhat misleading.

Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 12:02 PM

No sir, there is nothing misleading about the approximate .03% figure for CO2 in the air. Wiki says it’s about .038% and that’s about as high an estimate as you are likely to see. Some estimates are more like .028% but you are totally missing the point.

The point is that CO2 doesn’t drive climate in the first place and secondly, even if it did, the amount of CO2 due to human activities is some small percentage of the already small percentage.

We are talking about CO2 in the air only, we don’t care how much is in the oceans, because Al Gore has never said (yet) that CO2 in the oceans cause any problem.

Maxx on February 25, 2009 at 12:19 PM

Gore is nothing more than an environmental Madoff.

Baxter Greene on February 25, 2009 at 11:41 AM

Pretty much sums it all up in a nutshell right there.

MB4 on February 25, 2009 at 12:29 PM

Maxx on February 25, 2009 at 12:19 PM

MAXX,
Perhaps you shourd read what I wrote again. It is all related, is absolutely part of the theory, and you miss my point. If you understand the way the process works, you would be able to make a better argument.

Oversimplifications of the on the level to which you are making them, is essentially the very SAME thing that Al Gore does. The residence time of CO2 in the oceans is why the global warming fear is for our grandchildren not US. If it was just atmospheric CO2, we would be the ones in deep do-do.

My point is don’t over simplify. I agree with you that there is no human induced global warming. However, you need a better argument.

Your logic distilled down to the base is that the amount is small, so why worry.

Ozone is 0.000004% of the earths atmosphere. Using your logic, with the percentage being that small, why all the fuss over a few clorofluorocarbons destroying it…Unfortunately, without it all terrestrial life on the planet is screwed.

See my point?

Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 12:36 PM

Crap Cap and Trade = just mo’ Hope and Change.

TXUS on February 25, 2009 at 12:41 PM

Perhaps you shourd read

And perhaps I should do a better job when previewing.

:)

Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 12:44 PM

This is how markets work. If a commodity becomes scares, the price goes up; if there is excess, the price goes down. Excess carbon credits in the market means fewer producers need them because fewer are generating CO2. That is the point.

DaveO on February 25, 2009 at 12:46 PM

See my point?

Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 12:36 PM

I do not see your point. I made a simple statement, why are you trying to convolute it? My figure for the amount of CO2 is an estimate for the amount of CO2 in the air. That’s all we are concerned about. CO2 in sinks makes no difference because its not in the air.

Gore says CO2 in the AIR causes warming, which is of course an absurd lie, but that’s why I make no statement as to how much is anywhere else. Wherever else it is found, its not applicable until it gets into the air. And the estimated percentage of CO2 in the air is as I stated.

Maxx on February 25, 2009 at 12:54 PM

Here’s a prediction for you all. One day the phrase “cap-and-trade” will be remembered the same way that some of us remember the phrase “duck and cover”.

TrickyDick on February 25, 2009 at 1:33 PM

Since signing the Kyoto “treaty”, the EU has only increased it’s output of CO2 (in fact, more than the USA)! The whole thing is bogus! Even if the globe warms, it will not be because of man, but the sun. And if the sun warms our planet, planting trees will not change things. And if our planet warms in spite of trees, the most prudent response is to address the negative consequences one by one (like building a dike around NYC in 2090) rather than this cap and trade system which will do nothing and cost trillions and bring on the One World Government (which, of course, is the real reason behind this hoax).

Christian Conservative on February 25, 2009 at 1:38 PM

Gore=Madoff

That should be a way of putting it that people will understand. It is probably many of the same people who are taken in by both con-artists.

Why oh why can’t people open their eyes and see the fraud.

petunia on February 25, 2009 at 1:39 PM

Maxx on February 25, 2009 at 12:54 PM

Maxx,
I’m not trying to bust your chops, but this is one of those areas that I draw my sword about informing the masses who believe this crap. It is a far more complex thing than you are making it out to be. Think about the logic of what you’re saying for just a moment.

If all we were worried about is present day CO2 concentrations, we would know for certain what the effects of global warming are, because WE would be experiencing them.

The reason for the ambiguity is that some models show that CO2 stored in the oceans during the industrial revolution onset *might* just be beginning to bubble out into the atmosphere. Maybe… Which *might* increase CO2 ABOVE present day levels, and so on…

Your argument is so simple that it becomes frivolous in the context of the theory. The public schools, universities, mainstream media, and documentary producing types like discovery channel are into promoting this lie hook, line and sinker. Bad arguments damage the perceptions of others by making all of those in opposition to the lie look like idiots. As such you need to have a good argument when you’re combating societal stupidity.

Last time I checked, Gore has a BA in government, which imminently qualifies him to be the target of your arguments. i.e. he is truly a moron and can be ignored, however a lot of people with PhDs are “educating” the masses about it. Who has the more dangerous rhetoric that you should take on?

I have had to suffer through more courses than I care to think about that have spewed this crap. I have to deal with regulatory agencies beginning to look at stupid crap like acidification of the oceans, which is a subset of global warming tenets.

I do know what I’m talking about; you don’t even have the fundamental concepts for the theory correct.

That is what you’re up against…A belief system. If you want to change it, you need to change your argument. That was why I illustrated the critical flaw with your argument using the ozone example. Atmospheric concentrations of ozone are far below that of CO2, and yet effects are felt when that miniscule concentration decreases.

Understand now?

By the way my user id is shorthand for

Marine_Biologist

Not that I served as a Marine, like some seem to think.

Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 1:59 PM

Relax. Al Gore will someday be another Madoff.
I have been against this carbon credit thing in agriculture since they started peddling it.
The USDA & Game & Fish have been coming & giving talks to us ranchers & farmers about how we can ‘cash in’ on this system.
Another govt-type program that is full of stupid non-sensical rules & game-playing.
I wonder if these folks will still be trying to hook ranchers & farmers into this stuff still?

Badger40 on February 25, 2009 at 2:09 PM

Badger40,
Have you heard anything else out of EPA since the proposed rule for using the clean air act to regulate greenhouse gas emissions? I commented during the public comment period on principle not out of need like you did.

Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 2:13 PM

Ummm… isn’t this how it’s supposed to work?

The assumption is that there is some maximum allowable output of “pollution”, so it’s capped, and then below that cap the pollution is sold to the industry that values it the most.

In an economic downturn business that no longer need these permits sell them to someone else who values them more.

If you accept the assumption that a cap on carbon is needed then this is a good thing.

Of course if the cap was merely a sneaky way of imposing government control of the economy then you probably won’t be very happy.

Sackett on February 25, 2009 at 2:17 PM

Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 12:36 PM

I’ve been following the ‘science’ behind the global warming alarmism for the past 15 years.
You are right on. I think many people with no scientific background (college, workplace experience, training, etc)think complex systems can be simplified.
None of this is simple & everything is so intertwined that there is no possibility of a ‘simple’ interpretation on this subject.
I personally like to think in broad generalizations because it suits the classroom best in most subjects.
But when I talk about ‘global warming science’ in my classes, I have to get technical & complex. And I do it over the course of their entire science education that they get in HS here (I will be the only science teacher at the HS level next year).
So I start out simple in 9th grade & ramp it up-on through my elective classes.
Since I started teaching Ecology, my perspective on the science concerning that has really broadened.
It is NOT clear cut.
My geo background only introduced me to global warming as an aside. But climate is something geo folks I think sometimes take for granted.
Being a 7-12 (mostly 9-12) science teacher has forced my to study all other fields.
And it is AMAZING what passes for ‘science’ out there.
God I really hate the ambiguous graphs that get passes around.
CONTEXT!
Keep your perspective coming Marine_Bio dude!

Badger40 on February 25, 2009 at 2:18 PM

Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 2:13 PM

I hear the EPA is still going to pursue this.
It ain’t over.
I hate to be a tin-foil hatter, but I strongly suspect this is really an attempt at premises registration & national animal identification-NAIS.
NAIS is a bane to ranchers (anyone with livestock).
It’s akin to what the digital mandate has done to broadcasting.
I don’t think the EPA is going to give up on regulating agriculture.
They are also attacking water rights-that forum hasn’t died yet, though they are backtracking some on it. At least in MT.
The CO2 cow-pig tax is not over, I’m afraid.

Badger40 on February 25, 2009 at 2:21 PM

Badger40 on February 25, 2009 at 2:21 PM

WOHOOO! Lets make the food we need more expensive! That’ll help in a struggling economy.

Unfortunately, it is change I can believe, but change we DON’T need.

Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 2:29 PM

Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 2:29 PM

Heh heh. Yeah. I’m thinking of a bailout. Looking for my check anytime soon.

Badger40 on February 25, 2009 at 2:33 PM

Remember the story about how the North Pole would be ice free in 2008, which didn’t happen. Now the same people(National Snow and Ice Data Center) who gave us that prediction reported that they made an error in measuring the size of the ice sheets. Of course the error was to undercount the size by 193,000 square miles, the size of California.

http://www.investors.com/editorial/editorialcontent.asp?secid=1501&status=article&id=320285810930407

(see last paragraph.)

JeffVader on February 25, 2009 at 2:37 PM

JeffVader on February 25, 2009 at 2:37 PM

Any citizen with a computer can get the data from the Argo Floats. The readers digest version is that it is about 3000 floats that go up and down in the water column every 10 days, taking temperature, pressure, and salinity measurements. If you take the time to look at the last 10 years of data, using the raw data in excel to plot data points, you don’t see anything like a thermocline that is going deeper, at least for the small sets I have examined. (The oceans should be increasingly warmer FIRST if we are starting to show signs of warming)

Nasa has a cool visualization of where they move and the program site is here. Data are stored in a NC format, so you have to dig around to find a conversion program to convert it to text.

Kinda cool stuff for a school setting or someone who has more energy than I do at the end of the day.

:)

Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 2:51 PM

Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 1:59 PM

How much CO2 do YOU think is in the air?

Do you think CO2 causes global warming?

Maxx on February 25, 2009 at 2:58 PM

This can’t be. I think Albertus the Gore is single-handedly (or is it single-footedly?) sustaining his carbon credits company by virtue of the massive size of his own carbon footprint. As a result, somewhere in Africa there’s got to be a village whose residents are being forced by soldiers loyal to someone loyal to Gore to plant trees on their former farmland.

After all, it does take a village…

unclesmrgol on February 25, 2009 at 3:10 PM

I have had to suffer through more courses than I care to think about that have spewed this crap. I have to deal with regulatory agencies beginning to look at stupid crap like acidification of the oceans, which is a subset of global warming tenets.

Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 1:59 PM

If the oceans truly acidify and have the CO2 content envisioned, that would put Coke and Pepsi out of business, right? Are they included in the Stimulus, or do they already have enough caffeine?

unclesmrgol on February 25, 2009 at 3:14 PM

Maxx on February 25, 2009 at 2:58 PM

Am I using words that are too big? 0.02-0.03% dependant on where the measurement was made. It is an irrelevent factoid.

Go back and re-read what I wrote. I’ll quote the salient pieces below. I added some bold emphasis in the quotes to help you.

….I’m not a global warming advocate
Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 12:02 PM

…. I agree with you that there is no human induced global warming. However, you need a better argument…
Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 12:36 PM

….The public schools, universities, mainstream media, and documentary producing types like discovery channel are into promoting this lie hook, line and sinker. Bad arguments damage the perceptions of others by making all of those in opposition to the lie look like idiots. As such you need to have a good argument when you’re combating societal stupidity…..

…I have had to suffer through more courses than I care to think about that have spewed this crap. I have to deal with regulatory agencies beginning to look at stupid crap like acidification of the oceans, which is a subset of global warming tenets….
Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 1:59 PM

How could you be confused to the point of thinking that I might believe in global warming?

Stop using the atomospheric CO2 concentration as an argument against global warming.

It is ineffective. It makes you look stupid.

It creates a guilt by association for the masses who believe this crap when someone like me comes along and truly understands the complexity and problems with the theory.

I want to do everything I can to deflate the theory. I started out believing you want the same. As such, I’ve been trying to help you.

Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 3:25 PM

I’m not trying to bust your chops…

Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 1:59 PM

We are talking about different things. I’m not sure why you are not seeing that.

Maxx on February 25, 2009 at 3:27 PM

unclesmrgol on February 25, 2009 at 3:14 PM

Heh, If they’re in the bail out, then they definitely have enough sugar.

Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 3:27 PM

We are talking about different things. I’m not sure why you are not seeing that.

Maxx on February 25, 2009 at 3:27 PM

Ok, what is you’re point then? Because present day CO2 concentrations are irrelevant. (even if Gore says otherwise)

Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 3:30 PM

Doh,your point, not you’re.

Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 3:31 PM

Maxx,
I’ll have to check back later this evening, but based upon your statement that it is all about atmospheric CO2, I took that to mean that you have a fundamental misconception about global warming theory.

I still do, but that is also why I believe you are under the impression I’m talking about a different thing. I just have a fundamentally different grasp on this because of my background.

The fear with global warming isn’t the concentration in the atmoshphere today, but in the 100-700 years picture. The reason the concentration is so low is because of the solubility of CO2 in water and the equilibrium between dissolved CO2 gas, HCO3 and CO3.

Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 3:41 PM

Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 3:41 PM

I don’t think I can say it anymore simply than what I’ve already said.

Why would we want to lessen the amount of CO2 in the air… ? If man put ZERO CO2 into the air, it doesn’t matter, CO2 does not drive climate.

Maxx on February 25, 2009 at 11:52 AM

Do you disagree with the above statement?

Maxx on February 25, 2009 at 3:58 PM

Ok, what is you’re point then? Because present day CO2 concentrations are irrelevant.

Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 3:30 PM

Yes, that’s the point. I’m saying CO2 concentrations are irrelevant because CO2 does not drive climate.

Furthermore, CO2 is an essential gas for life to exist on the planet, its part of the cycle of life. No CO2 in the air means everything dies.

Maxx on February 25, 2009 at 5:35 PM

As stated already the carbon markets are a false scheme, nothing more then a pay to produce tax. What type of foolish world view would ever think that limiting production would lead to either environmental or economic success?

As the economic downturn has expressly demonstrated — economic success leads to environmental success. If you don’t have a job you could care less about litter or carbon or electric vehicles or the rain forest — you just want to feed your family!

LifeTrek on February 25, 2009 at 6:32 PM

Spot on, ED. You do nice work. And I’m late to the thread as usual.

The real dirty little secret is that the “carbon offsets” are dams in CHINA. Flippn’ dams in frappin’ CHINA!! All the extortion in Germany is going to CHINA!! CHINA is gonna save the planet with dams.

But don’t worry, our version will be different; you’ll see. Just like the kiddy lead bill!! heh Gotta love the web.

Flying Gadsden

Caststeel on February 25, 2009 at 7:49 PM

Maxx on February 25, 2009 at 5:35 PM

Maxx,
Your assumption is that CO2 can’t cause warming. Therein lies the problem when you are discussing this with someone who believes this.

It is theoretically possible for CO2 to raise temperatures. BUT water is a greenhouse gas, as is methane, nitrous oxide, and a few others. SO2 and other compounds act in the opposite way, inducing a cooling factor. The earth is a very complex system, and simplifications on a global scale very often dos a great injustice to the understanding.

So, I think this is a case of me saying know your adversary and what they believe. I do, and am trying to help you understand a piece of what I perceive as a problem in helping others come to a better understanding of the natural world, because this is one of those issues that will lead to the destruction of the US.

Here’s what I mean in a different example…
Many pastors and anti-evolutionists have been simplifying evolution by stating for many years that evolution is saying that we evolved from chimpanzees. The reality is that this is not what evolution states, but an easily refuted violation of the theory. Evolution states that related animals, have decended from a common animal. Common decent means that according to evolution, we decended from the same ancestor as chimpanzees, but that animal could have looked like Scrat in kids movie Ice age for example.

The confusion created in this simple example is part of the reason, at least in my opinion, why there is such pervasive acceptance of evolutionary theory. The first counter argument people run across is false. I doesn’t matter that the more you dig into cellular and molecular biology, things fall apart for Darwin, the impression is made.

The same kind of thing can occur if there is a blanket statement made about warming. Notice that there is a subtle shift in the MSM, that has been in existence in academia for the last 10 years or so. They refer to it as climate change, because warming is a bit of a misnomer, but I digress.

This is a simplified article, but it lays out in picture format what I’ve been saying.

The reality is that no one knows how much warming is possible on the earth with increased CO2, but it is theoretically possible. CO2 varies with time, so it isn’t completely insane to think it will increase as more is made by burning fossil fuels. The problem that doesn’t show up very well in the cycle graphic is that there are billions of tons unaccounted for. Where does all of this go? My contention is that there are processes that we have not discovered yet, so I’m not about to go around being a chicken little when the unaccounted carbon exceeds the estimated production from fossil fuels. (at least in some estimations)

There is an alternate theory of how oil and natural gas form. Maybe it is correct, and that is where the unaccounted for carbon goes. This is certainly an unusual find, that to my recollection is in a location that shouldn’t exist, which flies in the face of conventional understanding of fossil fuel production. (I have to check, but that would likely be beyond the time this is an active discussion.)

Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 8:08 PM

Folks this theory is from the same fools that claimed DDT was killing birds and furthermore was a hazard to the environment. It did have a positive affect on mosquito populations, it devastated them. Cases of malaria went down and mortality from it likewise went down.

Never under estimate the lure of power that corrupts any and all that come into contact via subsidies from government or non profits.

Carl Sagan believed in this bogus theory hook line and sinker and he went to his death without being liberated from it.

On the other hand, global climate change is exactly that, change. I can’t wait for those advocating this nutty theory to jump ship and swim towards the magnetic pole reversal. I wonder how the weakening magnetic field will impact temps, heh

larvcom on February 25, 2009 at 8:12 PM

Here’s a prediction for you all. One day the phrase “cap-and-trade” will be remembered the same way that some of us remember the phrase “duck and cover”.

TrickyDick on February 25, 2009 at 1:33 PM

Actually duck and cover was pretty good advice for the time. Everyone assumes that it was intended for those in the immediate blast are — where it wouldn’t matter as you would most likely be incinerated. It wasn’t. The advice was quite sensible if you were any distance from the blast and you saw the flash.

The advice to “duck and cover” holds well in many situations where structural destabilization or debris may be expected, such as during an earthquake or tornado. At a sufficient distance from a nuclear explosion, the shock wave would produce similar results and ducking and covering would perhaps prove adequate. It would protect the face (particularly the eyes) from the intense heat of a detonation. It would also offer some protection from flying glass (which in a city would be endemic) and other small but dangerous building debri

Survivors would not be in the immediate blast zone and preparing for the blast wave is quite sensible.

In addition there was always the possibility that the flash would be from one of our own Nike missiles. They would have been a nuclear air blast designed to take out a bomber fleet and would have been mostly harmless but could have still included a blast wave.

People made fun of the duct tape and plastic advice too, but 1) that memo also included advice to get out and keep supplies for 3 or more days which could have helped thousands during Katrina.
2) during an attack if you could not evac duct tape and plastic could save your life during the period of greatest risk during exposure to a chemical leak or attack.

LifeTrek on February 25, 2009 at 8:30 PM

Your assumption is that CO2 can’t cause warming.

Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 8:08 PM

Please stop trying to put words in my mouth, I said no such thing. I said CO2 does not drive climate.

it isn’t completely insane to think it [temperature] will increase as more [CO2] is made by burning fossil fuels.

Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 8:08 PM

I’m afraid it is completely insane Marine_Bio. Water vapor absorbs more heat than CO2 on a molecule by molecule basis. And water vapor, as I’m sure you know, is also far more prevalent in the atmosphere than CO2. So CO2 has no ability to absorb more heat than H2O, even if it was more prevalent than H2O, which of course it is not.

But actually that point is moot also, because the earth’s primary means of cooling is not by transferal of heat to space as Al Gore would have you believe.

As a Marine_Biologist I would think you would know what the Earth’s primary means of cooling is. Do you?

But actually both of the above point are dawrfed by the fact that only the sun has the ability to drive either global warming or cooling trends. The Earth is cooling now and has been since 1999 because the sun has cycled into low output.

So, CO2 for all practical purposes, has NO effect on climate or temperature. You say you don’t believe me? Tell me Marine_Bio is there more CO2 in the air during summertime or during the winter time?

Maxx on February 25, 2009 at 9:18 PM

I wonder how the weakening magnetic field will impact temps, heh

larvcom on February 25, 2009 at 8:12 PM

I don’t know what effect if any it will have on temperatures but the weakening magnetic field is one of the many reasons radiometric dating does not work and cannot work.

Maxx on February 25, 2009 at 9:50 PM

Maxx on February 25, 2009 at 9:18 PM

Maxx, The insanity is that you will not listen to me. I completely understand your point. You’re wrong about CO2′s ability to warm. Like my evolution example, it is complicated due to the fact that the earth is complicated.

DUDE….

Your assumption is that CO2 can’t cause warming.

Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 8:08 PM

Please stop trying to put words in my mouth, I said no such thing. I said CO2 does not drive climate.

The nuance difference there does not rise to the level of significant.

You’re right about this…

But actually both of the above point are dawrfed by the fact that only the sun has the ability to drive either global warming or cooling trends. The Earth is cooling now and has been since 1999 because the sun has cycled into low outpu

What you’re talking about has a name, the Milankovitch cycle, which is why I said this…

However, there is the optimistic view. The Russian research that indicates we are headed into the downturn in solar activity (called a Milankovitch cycle) which would be leading to an ice age, could be correct. In that case all the CO2 we pump in could be what saves our grandchildren from freezing their butts off.

;)

Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 12:02 PM

You have to know the theory to be able to punch valid holes in it. For example, what is theorized to happen if the thermohaline circulation of the North Atlantic shuts down? I’ll spare you the google moments, an ICE AGE IN EUROPE. HMMM, do you think that’s why academia started in on the climate change mantra instead of global warming? You have to think in longer time frames to put the theory into proper perspective, which you are not.

I’m not a global warming advocate, and I’m telling you that if you used this argument with a high school senior they would walk away thinking you’re an idiot. Somehow I think you would prefer to be able to cause them to think independently instead of taking what is spoonfed to them.

Stop wasting my time with half baked ideas and start providing links to back up anything that you think I’m wrong about.

Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 9:59 PM

Marine_Bio on February 25, 2009 at 9:59 PM

Look Marine_Bio, probably any gas will heat up if you filter sunlight through it. That’s why I did not say that CO2 cannot contribute to warming, because of course CO2 can warm, just like any other gas.

That’s why there is a big difference between the two statements:

Your assumption is that CO2 can’t cause warming

and my actual statement:

CO2 does not drive climate.

No one can say that CO2 cannot cause warming because of course CO2 is able to warm. But it does not and cannot drive climate.

You don’t like the way I argue against global warming, that’s fine. I suggest you do it your way and I will do it my way. How’s that?

Maxx on February 25, 2009 at 10:23 PM

“Carbon trading markets collapse”

Three day old news. This is unacceptable, Mr. Morrissey. Everyone likes you better than Allahpundit no doubt, but you’ve got to get your messages to post on the day that they happen, or that will change. Quickly.

Kevin M on February 25, 2009 at 10:43 PM

Very interesting debate here at Hotair which why I so much enjoy my time. New info to soak up with fresh ideas.

Maxx: If the weakening field allows more radiation in it will almost certainly heat up some of the lower altitudes and who knows how much of that warm feeling will be toxic to us.

Don’t you guys know this is settled science? The Gorecle says so. sarc/

larvcom on February 25, 2009 at 10:48 PM

Maxx: If the weakening field allows more radiation in it will almost certainly heat up some of the lower altitudes and who knows how much of that warm feeling will be toxic to us.

Don’t you guys know this is settled science? The Gorecle says so. sarc/

larvcom on February 25, 2009 at 10:48 PM

Right, the weakening field will in fact allows more x-ray and gamma rays in, and they are indeed harmful to us, no doubt. If the Goracle is saying this, then this might be the first thing he’s said that I agree with.

But of course that has no bearing on global warming and surely even the Goracle would admit that nothing man is doing is causing the magnetic field to weaken.

Maxx on February 25, 2009 at 10:56 PM

Wait, I never said that the Goracle said as much. Btw, don’t give this clown any ideas as I’m fairly sure he’ll come up with a cockamamie theory that would state that the over use of magnets in all our electric producing items is actually causing this weakening.

There is one result of the weakening that we can witness and that is Gore and all like him have lost the ability to distinguish up from down, west from east, north from south and warm from cold.

larvcom on February 26, 2009 at 8:20 AM

That “Green Glut” picture shows water vapor. What a joke. The cooling towers emit water vapor along with the stack in the middle. That movie “The China Syndrome” shows fire coming out of a cooling tower and people believed it. Go back to school because you didn’t pay attention in science class.

mixplix on February 26, 2009 at 10:59 AM

Larvcom,
Ignore Maxx, the only conclusion I can reach is that he apparently doesn’t understand what he reads.

Case in point.
Gamma rays and x-rays are electromagnetic radiation, in other words they are photons, light energy that we can’t see if you will. UV light falls into this category as an electromagnetic radiation outside of the visible light spectrum, and the filter is ozone, not the earths magnetic field.

Magnetic fields only affect charged particles, like the solar winds that are responsible for the auroras. The only particulate radiation is alpha and beta radiation.

Magnetic field disruption will not affect the types of radiation he is talking about.

The reversal of magnetic fields has no impact on radiometric dating either, since that is based on radioactive decay rates for isotopes of elements like potassium, uranium and carbon. Just look at the name, breaking it down into the parts, the name radio metric, litteraly meaning mearuring radioactivity. There are problems with the methods and you have to make a lot of assumptions, but it is completely disconnected from the earths magnetic field, and is a very lengthy discussion that is completely off topic.

Marine_Bio on February 26, 2009 at 11:36 AM

…There are problems with the methods …
Marine_Bio on February 26, 2009 at 11:36 AM

And by this I mean that I disagree with selection of decay rates. Once selected, the methodology is meticulous. These kinds of differences are ultimately why science has a doctorate of philosophy instead of a doctorate of science. There are different ways of looking at the same thing, and it becomes a philosophical discussion at that point.

Marine_Bio on February 26, 2009 at 11:48 AM

I don’t know what effect if any it will have on temperatures but the weakening magnetic field is one of the many reasons radiometric dating does not work and cannot work.

Maxx on February 25, 2009 at 9:50 PM

False. I have perused a lot of work on this subject as a geo-sci girl.
In my educated opinion, this:
http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/faq-meritt/age.html#dating

is a very scientifically based site with GREAT reference reading material to substantiate the arguments made therein.
Suffice to say-radioisotopic dating methods do NOT depend upon how much of the parent material you started with.
Decay rates do NOT change.
They been measured in the laboratory in controlled experiments.
When all or many of the different decay series are used to date an object agree on the same date-you know you are doing it right.
All of the data supporting radioisotopic dating techniques overwhelmingly supports the accuracy of the various methods.
And don’t try the basalt or pillow basalt ruse- read the link I provided. Peruse the proffered reading material the link provides.
Get educated. Don’t exacerbate the ignorance problem & spew false-hoods.
Marine_Bio is right in his little tirade here:
Science is so often misunderstood-even by many scientists themselves. People spew ‘facts’, 1/2 truths & throw up a graph or a pie chart & without the proper context or background knowledge, you can perpetuate a lie, even accidentally.
The scientific community needs to come down hard on these ‘junk’ scientists who are publishing unsubstantiated data sets that aren’t even fully explained in their conclusions.
Incidentally-you know something is a lie when you really see it in the laboratory yourself.
Radioisotopic dating is real. With technology, we will only get more accurate with it-like a slide rule vs a calculator.

Badger40 on February 26, 2009 at 12:03 PM

Marine_Bio on February 26, 2009 at 11:36 AM

Ah I see you’re here this morning. You & I seem to both hate the perpetuation of ‘junk’ science & ‘dumbed down’ data that people grab out of thin air.
Arggg! I just hate it!

Badger40 on February 26, 2009 at 12:04 PM

Badger40 on February 26, 2009 at 12:04 PM

Oh Yes. I haven’t been trying to tirade, but rather trying to get Maxx to understand some of his assertions are easily shown to be false, which weakens his argument against global warming. If a HS student with a white belt in Google-Fu can find information on wikipedia that disproves his argument, he has a problem being convincing.

Towards the end, I became irritated. I really tried not to become irritated.

Marine_Bio on February 26, 2009 at 12:20 PM

If a HS student with a white belt in Google-Fu can find information on wikipedia that disproves his argument, he has a problem being convincing.

And this is what I am furiously trying to ‘unlearn’ my students from.
I cannot tell you how frustrating it is that young kids believe what they see on the Internet as gospel.
Ugh.
I also have fellow teachers believe crap like this.

Badger40 on February 26, 2009 at 12:25 PM

Badger40 on February 26, 2009 at 12:25 PM

You don’t have to even try to articulate your frustration…I know. Before I found this position, I was teaching HS Chemistry and Forensic Science.

That is why I call it Google-Fu. I picked up that name frome someone here on Hot Air, but it is more appropriate than they realize. No thought goes into looking at the google results to do a simple gut check. So it is viewed as somewhere between the answer god and magic.

Many of my students felt that they didn’t need to know what I was teaching them because if they ever needed it they could google it. Unfortunately, Google can’t help you understand a stoichiometry if you don’t understand the mole concept or a differential equation if your don’t understand calculus before you search.

It doesn’t bode well for our future as a nation.

Marine_Bio on February 26, 2009 at 12:38 PM

a stoichiometry

DOH!

A stoichiometry problem…

Marine_Bio on February 26, 2009 at 12:41 PM

Case in point.
Gamma rays and x-rays are electromagnetic radiation, in other words they are photons, light energy that we can’t see if you will. UV light falls into this category as an electromagnetic radiation outside of the visible light spectrum, and the filter is ozone, not the earths magnetic field.

Magnetic fields only affect charged particles, like the solar winds that are responsible for the auroras. The only particulate radiation is alpha and beta radiation.

Magnetic field disruption will not affect the types of radiation he is talking about.

Marine_Bio on February 26, 2009 at 11:36 AM

I stand corrected. Yep, I got that one wrong. I knew the magnetic field stopped something, I thought it was the rays, nope, it’s the charged particles.

Nevertheless, my point was that a reduced magnetic field will indeed work to our detriment. I just got the stuff that is stops wrong.

Maxx on February 26, 2009 at 1:01 PM

Maxx on February 26, 2009 at 1:01 PM

Fair enough, and yes changes to the magnetic field would be very destructive. How destructive depends upon how the reversal occurs.

I’m going to try this one more time, but this is likely to drop off the main page soon.
CO2 by itself or any other component in a complex system by itself can not be isolated as the single point of change. As such, any changes to concentrations have unknown consequences, which is why the CO2 driven climate change folks have gained so much traction. There is some theoretical validity to thinking that increased CO2 will lead to warming due to the paired double bond of CO2 being reflective to Infrared radiation, but that it remains to be seen if the CO2 levels can rise to the concentration levels that would cause climate forcing to be possible. We’ll know for certain in 700 years, but I suspect they will be wrong.

If you examine the concentrations of CO2 in the past, they show a pattern of being higher during warmer periods. What I believe is that increased CO2, which lags by about 700 years on the Milankovitch cycle, is the result of warming. There used to be a fairly nice graph that I can’t find which illustrated this nicely, which probably means it has been removed.

You just need to focus on other areas if you try to engage someone who believes this is reality. Google turns up all sorts of information (or misinformation if you prefer) and your efforts become nullified. That is my point.

Marine_Bio on February 26, 2009 at 1:38 PM

There is some theoretical validity to thinking that increased CO2 will lead to warming due to the paired double bond of CO2 being reflective to Infrared radiation, but that it remains to be seen if the CO2 levels can rise to the concentration levels that would cause climate forcing to be possible.

Marine_Bio on February 26, 2009 at 1:38 PM

I believe your statement above represents our biggest disagreement. Trust me, I clearly understand WHAT you are saying, I simply disagree. As you said, this thread is disappearing so this isn’t the best time to get into it. We will have that opportunity in the future and I will present my case.

Maxx on February 26, 2009 at 1:59 PM

I think Henri Poincaré (1854 – 1912) captures the essence of science and methods related to this topic quite well….

If we knew exactly the laws of nature and the situation of the universe at the initial moment, we could predict exactly the situation of that same universe at a succeeding moment. but even if it were the case that the natural laws had no longer any secret for us, we could still only know the initial situation approximately. If that enabled us to predict the succeeding situation with the same approximation, that is all we require, and we should say that the phenomenon had been predicted, that it is governed by laws. But it is not always so; it may happen that small differences in the initial conditions produce very great ones in the final phenomena. A small error in the former will produce an enormous error in the latter. Prediction becomes impossible, and we have the fortuitous phenomenon.

Marine_Bio on February 26, 2009 at 2:08 PM

Science definitely has a philisophical component.

Cheers.

Marine_Bio on February 26, 2009 at 2:10 PM

Oops…Henri Poincaré was a physicist. The best link to learn a little about where he fits into the scheme of things. (academic peers etc.)

Marine_Bio on February 26, 2009 at 2:16 PM

You do kow that you can access this thread via the Vault just below the main link.

larvcom on February 26, 2009 at 3:52 PM

larvcom on February 26, 2009 at 3:52 PM

Yes, but that I didn’t think most people continue on a thread once if falls off the main page. Do they?

Marine_Bio on February 26, 2009 at 10:30 PM

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