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Jesu, Juva

Posts Tagged ‘science


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Creationists insist that the amazing world of the Bear Hunt sprung up ex nihilo for the purpose of telling a beautiful story.

But we know better. By Scientific observation and inductive reasoning we can prove the existence of enormous negative page numbers. We know that inductive reasoning functions as incontestable proof, because we are the keepers and guardians of the sacred truth that all worlds are impersonal machines and not stories. Worlds have no plots, and are filled only with particles, not characters. Creationists are stupid. So are all authors, artists, composers and poets — they are all conspiring in a tremendous lie about worlds and Science (all rise!).

Written by Scott Moonen

August 28, 2012 at 8:55 am

Global warming

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There is evidence that the earth’s climate has warmed slightly in recent history. It is uncertain whether this is part of a natural cycle, is directly attributable to the by-products of modern industry, or some combination of the two. Many individuals theorize that continued artificial production of greenhouse gases will have the direct catastrophic effect of measurable global warming, followed by melting of polar ice and a substantial rise in sea level.

There are several things that bother me with this simplistic analysis.

  1. The atmosphere is a complex and chaotic system. A single perturbation can have drastic and far-reaching results; El Nino demonstrates this. Global warming would almost certainly have unexpected consequences. If the current climate is in a metastable state, it is possible that global warming could cause it to metastasize to an antediluvian climate. But it is equally possible it could result in a so-called ice age.
  2. Warmer air holds more water vapor. Such water vapor could accelerate warming by acting as a greenhouse gas, or possibly moderate warming if manifested as cloud cover. Furthermore, evaporation of water would at least partially offset a rise in sea level.
  3. A rise in ocean temperature will reduce the solubility of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases, resulting in further release into the atmosphere. As with the increase in water vapor, this could result in an acceleration of warming.
  4. Ice cap melting produces freshwater. This increases the solubility of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases, at least partially offsetting the reduction in solubility due to temperature increase.

Most superficial popular analysis doesn’t address these points (although since first thinking about this, the movie The Day After Tomorrow portrayed the ice age angle). I’m sure these have been considered as part of scientific analysis, but that makes me wonder if there really is much cause for popular concern. I confess that my own grasp of this issue is only at a popular level.

Some links of interest:

Written by Scott Moonen

February 7, 2006 at 7:19 am