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Mass die-offs from human impact and planetary response to the assault could occur by early 2016

Archive for the ‘GHG’ Category

UAE, Australia, USA and Canada top list of polluters

Posted by feww on November 17, 2010

Most Unethical Countries Worst Polluters

UAE, Australia, USA, Canada, Netherlands and Saudi Arabia are the worst CO2 polluters: Report

The United Arab Emirates, Australia, the United States and Canada have the worst overall records for emitting carbon, based on their  current and historic emissions, says a report.


A new study, which rates 183 countries on their CO2 emissions from energy use, has identified United Arab Emirates (UAE), Australia, USA, Canada, Netherlands and Saudi Arabia as the world’s six worst polluters in relation to CO2 pollution.

UAE (1), Australia (2), USA (3), Canada (4), Netherlands (5) and Saudi Arabia (6) are the only countries rated by the report as ‘extreme risk’ because of their high CO2 emissions from energy consumption.

“The poor performance of UAE and Saudi Arabia is reflective of a near 100% reliance on fossil fuels and their use of energy intensive desalination plants to produce drinking water. Saudi Arabia was the 11th highest global emitter in 2008 with 466 MtCO2. However, the desalination process that produces 70% of the country’s drinking water accounts for 50% of CO2 emissions. UAE dropped 15 places from last year to take the bottom spot due to a huge 25% jump in its overall carbon output between 2006 and 2008 and a 20% rise in per capita emissions.  Maplecroft recognises that desalination is a positive way to address water security but high emissions underline the need to find more energy efficient innovations.” The report said. See full report.

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Posted in Emissions Bill, fossil fuel dependency, GHG, greenhouse gas emissions, greenhouse gases | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

NCAR Report: Thou Shalt NOT Bullshit the Citizens

Posted by feww on April 16, 2010

Submitted by a member

Half the Energy Entering Earth System is Missing [sic]

What Happened to Basic Physics: A Bullshit Report by National Center for Atmospheric Research

Really? Could you permanently trap heat, as if by black magic? Is this trick cumulative too?

If this is good science, there is just one thing  left for the National Center for Atmospheric Research to do! Only one guess allowed.


This satellite map shows the amount of solar radiation (watts per square meter) reflected during September 2008. Along the equator, clouds reflected a large proportion of sunlight, while the pale sands of the Sahara caused the high reflectiveness in North Africa. Neither pole is receiving much incoming sunlight at this time of year, so they reflect little energy even though both are ice-covered. (NASA map by Robert Simmon, based on CERES data.)

How much is the sum total of the missing energy?

“The gap between what’s entering the climate system and what’s leaving is about 37 times the heat energy produced by all human activities, from driving cars and running power plants to burning wood,” Reuters reported the report co-author  John Fasullo of the U.S. National Center for Atmospheric Research as saying.

Absorbed sunlight is balanced by heat radiated from Earth’s surface and atmosphere. This satellite map shows the distribution of thermal infrared radiation emitted by Earth in September 2008. Most heat escaped from areas just north and south of the equator, where the surface was warm, but there were few clouds. Along the equator, persistent clouds prevented heat from escaping. Likewise, the cold poles radiated little heat. (NASA map by Robert Simmon, based on CERES data.)

Energy lurking deep in the ocean?

Are the oceans evaporating? Is the air temperature rising by 20 degrees Celsius each month? Are there any signs that the heat is taking time off at a popular holiday resort in the Caribbeans? So, where’s the heck is this missing energy? Is this a spoof?

“It might lurk in deep ocean waters in areas sensors don’t reach. Some of it could be the result of imprecise measurement or processing of satellite or sensor data. But the greenhouse-caused heat gap is definitely there,” Reuters reported the authors as saying.

Half of the energy gap is unaccounted for, Fasullo and his co-author Kevin Trenberth said. “It hasn’t left the climate system but it hasn’t been detected with satellites, ocean sensors or other technology,” Reuters reported them as saying.

Try recalibrating your instruments instead of playing “silly buggers” with fundamental physics!

surface_energy_balance
The surface absorbs about 48% of incoming sunlight. Three processes remove an equivalent amount of energy from the Earth’s surface: evaporation (25%), convection (5%), and thermal infrared radiation, or heat (net 17%). (NASA illustration by Robert Simmon. Photograph ©2006 Cyron.)

How much energy are we taking about?

Well, things started getting out of hand around late 1970s to early 1980s. So the authors are probably talking about a 30-year period where half of the energy arriving, stayed behind. Here’s some basic calculation:

  • Total rate of solar energy received by the planet: ~ 180 prtawatts, PW [one PW is 10^15]
  • [NOTE: about half of that energy, 90PW, reaches the Earth's surface]
  • 180 ÷ 2 = 90 PW retained by Earth system [according to the report authors]
  • 90PW x 25 years x 31,556,926 seconds=  7.1 Exp10 PJ [71 yottajoules, or 71Exp24]  is the total rate of energy lurking in the oceans  [according to the report authors]
  • Volume of water on earth:  1.3 billion cubic kilometers of water [1.3Exp21 liter]
  • Definition of Mean Calorie [4.19J]:  The amount of energy required to warm one gram of air-free water by 1°C under standard atmospheric pressure.
  • Energy required to raise the temperature of 1kg [~1 liter] of ocean water by one degree: ~ 4.2 kJ.
  • The average rise in the ocean temperatures, if what the authors are saying were remotely plausible: ~ 13 degrees°C


On average, 340 watts per square meter of solar energy arrives at the top of the atmosphere. Earth returns an equal amount of energy back to space by reflecting some incoming light and by radiating heat (thermal infrared energy). Most solar energy is absorbed at the surface, while most heat is radiated back to space by the atmosphere. Earth’s average surface temperature is maintained by two large, opposing energy fluxes between the atmosphere and the ground (right)—the greenhouse effect. NASA illustration by Robert Simmon, adapted from Trenberth et al. 2009, using CERES flux estimates provided by Norman Loeb.)

How do we removed the last vestiges of credibility from the impact of GHG on Earth

Blame the ghost energy on the rise in greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. Then come up with dumb statement like “half of the energy coming into Earth’s climate system  is missing, but it could eventually reappear as another sign of climate change.”

The net effect of the above would work magic on rubbishing everything associated with GHG cause of climate change.

“The heat will come back to haunt us [like a ghost] sooner or later [as all nasty ghosts do,]” Trenberth said. “It is critical to track the build-up of energy in our climate system so we can understand what is happening and predict our future climate.”

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Serial No 1,577. Starting April 2010, each entry on this blog has a unique serial number. If any of the numbers are missing, it may mean that the corresponding entry has been blocked by Google/the authorities in your country. Please drop us a line if you detect any anomaly/missing number(s).

Posted in Earth’s Climate, energy budget, GHG, Super-destructive events | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

133,000,000 Wise Monkeys

Posted by feww on March 16, 2010

submitted by a reader

They See NO CO2, Smell NO CO2 and Believe NO CO2

Nearly half of Americans think climate change concerns are overstated and over a third doubt the environmental consequence—Gallop


The original Three Wise Monkeys hear, speak, see no evil. Wood carving at Toshogu, Nikko, Tochigi Prefecture, Japan. Source: Wikimedia.

As the CO2 concentration in the atmosphere reaches 390 parts per million (see below),  48 percent of Americans said they believed the seriousness of climate change is overstated, up from 41 percent in 2009 and 31 percent in 1997, when Gallup first ran the survey, Reuters  reported.

“Thirty-five percent said in the latest poll that the effects of global warming either will never happen (19 percent) or will not happen in their lifetimes (16 percent).”

Gallup surveyed about1,000 adults, and the poll had error margin of ± 4 percent.

What Percentage of Americans DO Understand and Care?

It doesn’t take the rocket scientists at NASA to work this one out. Add 48 and 35 and the maximum margins of error (otherwise allow for the “I dunno”), and deduct the subtotal from 100 percent:   100 – (48 + 35 + 4 + 4) = 9% of the U-S population

Only then will you realize what an uphill struggle this can be!


The graph shows recent monthly mean carbon dioxide measured at Mauna Loa Observatory, Hawaii.

The last four complete years of the Mauna Loa CO2 record plus the current year are shown. Data are reported as a dry air mole fraction defined as the number of molecules of carbon dioxide divided by the number of all molecules in air, including CO2 itself, after water vapor has been removed. The mole fraction is expressed as parts per million (ppm). Example: 0.000400 is expressed as 400 ppm.

In the above figure, the dashed red line with diamond symbols represents the monthly mean values, centered on the middle of each month. The black line with the square symbols represents the same, after correction for the average seasonal cycle. The latter is determined as a moving average of SEVEN adjacent seasonal cycles centered on the month to be corrected, except for the first and last THREE and one-half years of the record, where the seasonal cycle has been averaged over the first and last SEVEN years, respectively.

The last year of data are still preliminary, pending recalibrations of reference gases and other quality control checks. The Mauna Loa data are being obtained at an altitude of 3400 m in the northern subtropics, and may not be the same as the globally averaged CO2 concentration at the surface.

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Posted in Climate Change, climate change fallout, environmental impact of warming, GHG | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

Super heat-trapping HFC-23 emissions up 50 pct

Posted by feww on January 28, 2010

Three Facts about HFC-23 Your Doctor Should Know

1. In the atmosphere, HFC-23 is 14,800 times more effective in trapping heat than its CO2 equivalent.

2. HFC-23 persists in the atmosphere for about 300 years.

3. Emissions in 2006-2008 jumped 50 percent above the 1990-2000 average.

HFC-23, or trifluoromethane, is a byproduct of chlorodifluoromethane, or HCFC-22, a refrigerant used in heat-exchange appliances, air conditioners and refrigerators, and a base compound for manufacturing heat and chemical-resistant materials such as  coatings and covering for cables, as well as aerosol propellants, solvents, fire fighting and foam blowing agents.

It is also heavily used in the semiconductor industry in plasma etching of silicon oxide and silicon nitride. Probably the most well known product associated with the release of HFC-23 to the atmosphere is Teflon, by DuPont.


Chlorodifluoromethane or difluoromonochloromethane is a hydrochlorofluorocarbon (HCFC) AKA, HCFC-22, or R-22
.

Chlorodifluoromethane is prepared from chloroform: HCCl3 + 2 HF → HCF2Cl + 2 HCl


CHF3 also known as: HFC-23, R-23, Fluoroform, Carbon trifluoride, Methyl trifluoride, Fluoryl, Freon 23, Arcton 1,  FE-13, UN 1984. CHF3 is produced as a by-product of polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) aka Teflon (DuPont). It is also generated biologically in trace amounts.

“Without the international effort to reduce emissions of HFC-23, its emissions and atmospheric abundance would have been even larger in recent years,” said Stephen Montzka, a NOAA research chemist. “As it was, emissions in 2006-2008 were about 50 percent above the 1990-2000 average.”

The finding comes in the face  of worldwide efforts to prevent the gas release into the atmosphere. The Montreal Protocol stipulates the end of HCFC-22 production by 2020 in developed countries and 2030 in developing counties for those applications that allow  CFC-22 released to the atmosphere.

Unfortunately, The Montreal Protocol imposes no restriction on the production of  HCFC-22 from fluoropolymerization, which also co-produces the HFC-23. “The future atmospheric abundance of HFC-23 and its contribution to future climate change depends on amounts of HCFC-22 produced and the success of programs to reduce emissions of the co-generated HFC-23.”

“HFC-23 is one of the most potent greenhouse gases emitted as a result of human activities. Over a 100-year time span, one pound of HFC-23 released into the atmosphere traps heat 14,800 times more effectively than one pound of carbon dioxide. To date, the total accumulated emission of HFC-23 is small relative to other greenhouse gases, making this gas a minor (less than one percent) contributor to climate change at present.” NOAA Press Release said.

Scientists measured air collected from above the snow surface and down to 380 feet below the snow surface during field studies in Antarctica in 2001, 2005 and 2009. Using these results, they were able to determine how amounts of HFC-23 and other gases affecting climate and stratospheric ozone have changed in the recent past. The first published measurements of HFC-23 appeared in 1998 but this was the first time scientists examined how HFC-23 emissions have changed since 1996, particularly in developing nations and since the UNFCCC’s projects to reduce emissions began in 2003.

“Recent increases in global FHC-23 emission” by S.A. Montzka, L. Kuijpers, M.O.Battle, M. Aydin, K. Verhulst, E.S. Saltzman, D.W.Fahey will be published by January 29 in Geophysical Research Letters.

Posted in carbon dioxide, chlorodifluoromethane, GHG, GHG emissions, trifluoromethane | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

If Sunflower CEO Wants More Coal Power at Holcomb

Posted by feww on May 10, 2009

Earl Watkins Will Get another Coal-fired Power Plant at Holcomb

How they did it!

First the company hatched an energy bill up and called it renewable energy bill. The kind of renewable deal that allows them to also build a coal-fired power plant!

Then thy pulled a few strings thereby removing the only obstacle to their plan: The former Kansas governor, Kathleen Sebelius. Ms. Sebelius was promoted to the position of  Secretary of Health and Human Services in Obama Admin.

holcomb
The existing 360-megawatt Holcomb Station power plant in Garden City, Kansas (undated photo), burns 1.5 million tons of coal from Wyoming’s Powder River Basin each year . Its operators sought to sextuple its output. Image and caption: Sierra Club. Image may be subject to copyright.

Sebelius had vetoed four previous bills, opposing even the expansion of Sunflower’s existing Holcomb plant.

[Why did she let go? We can only presume that she let go because they told her that she could do a lot more good [sic] as Secretary of Health and Human Services.]

When the coast was finally clear, the Kansas legislature overwhelmingly passed the renewable energy bill on Friday by 103 to 18 votes.

The Senate had already voted 37 to 2 in favor the previous day.

The new Kansas governor,  Mark Parkinson, is  expected to sign the bill because he was its architect, of course. It was he who proposed a 895-megawatt coal plant at Holcomb. Gov Mark Parkinson, who was sworn in on April 28, wasted no time kowtowing to the  Sunflower CEO Earl Watkins.

“In October 2007, Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) Secretary Rod Bremby rejected plans for two 700-MW coal-fired units in western Kansas at Holcomb. It was the first time a U.S. coal plant was rejected solely on the basis of health risks from carbon dioxide emissions.” Reuters reported.

“The cost of the new plant was not revealed. In early 2007, when three 700-MW units were proposed to be built at the existing 360-MW plant, the cost was near $4 billion.”

“Using an industry estimate of $2,100 per kilowatt, the 895 MW plant would cost about $1.9 billion.”

Coal-fired plant produce about twice as much CO2 as natural gas plants for each megawatt of electricity they generate.

Sunflower’s Watkins expects the new plant to be operation within 5 years.  Most of the power  from the Holcomb plant (about 80 percent) would be exported to Tri-State Generation in Colorado and Golden Spread Electric Cooperative, based in Amarillo, Texas.

Sunflower is expected to be awarded a substantial federal renewable energy stimulus fund for its proposed  Sunflower Integrated Bioenergy center, which will handle  ethanol, biodiesel, and algae energy projects.

Gov Mark Parkinson has achieved all of the above on behalf of Sunflower in little over a week, thereby securing himself powerful clients [yes, he too is a lawyer] after his plitical career has run dry.

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Posted in CO2, GHG, Golden Spread Electric, Kathleen Sebelius, Tri-State Generation | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

The World Will Never Be the Same Again!

Posted by feww on January 18, 2009

Climatologist James Hansen echos the call for action

“I have been described as the grandfather of climate change. In fact, I am just a grandfather and I do not want my grandchildren to say that grandpa understood what was happening but didn’t make it clear,” Hansen said last week.

Hansen says Barack Obama’s four-year administration, which begins with his inauguration as US president on Tuesday,  offers the world a last chance to avoid global disaster. Melting glaciers and ice caps, flooded coastal cities, species extinctions and expanding deserts  await mankind, he says.

“We cannot now afford to put off change any longer. We have to get on a new path within this new administration. We have only four years left for Obama to set an example to the rest of the world. America must take the lead.”

Hansen correctly senses that the world is collapsing; however, his timetable  is too optimistic. Perhaps the optimism arises from a lack of appreciation of  fragility of ecosystems and the mechanisms of collapse, the progress of which are exponentially  intensifying.

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Posted in Barack Obama, CO2, coal power, GHG, JAMES HANSEN | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Arctic Sea Ice: Likely Record-Low Volume

Posted by feww on October 4, 2008

Arctic Sea Ice Down to Second-Lowest Extent; Likely Record-Low Volume – NSIDC

The National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) says despite cooler temperatures and ice-favoring conditions, long-term decline of Arctic ice cover is continuing.

As previously reported, Arctic sea ice extent for 2008 melt season as measured by satellite was the second-lowest level since 1979, reaching the lowest point on September 14, 2008. Average sea ice extent over the month of September, a standard measure in the scientific study of Arctic sea ice, was 4.67 million square kilometers. The record monthly low was 4.28 million square kilometers set in September 2007.

The 2008 observation strongly reinforces the thirty-year downward trend in Arctic ice extent, NSIDC said. The 2008 low was 34% below the long-term September average for the 1979 to 2000 period and only 9% greater than the 2007 record low. The 2008 low was so far below the average, it forced the negative trend in September extent downward to –11.7 % per decade (from 10.7 %).


A comparison of ice age in September 2007 (left) and September 2008 (right) shows the increase in thin first-year ice (red) and the decline in thick multi-year ice (orange and yellow). White indicates areas of ice below ~50 percent, for which ice age cannot be determined. AVHRR, SMMR SSM/I, and IABP buoy data.
From National Snow and Ice Data Center courtesy C. Fowler, J. Maslanik, and S. Drobot, University of Colorado at Boulder - High-resolution image

“The trend of decline in the Arctic continues, despite this year’s slightly greater extent of sea ice. The Arctic is more vulnerable than ever.” —NSIDC Lead Scientist Ted Scambos

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Posted in energy, environment, food, GHG, greenhouse gas emissions | Tagged: , , , , | 4 Comments »

Image of the Day: Drought in Egypt

Posted by feww on June 20, 2008

What Happened to my Rice?


An Egyptian rice farmer shows his drought damaged rice crop and cracks in the rice terrace soil caused by more than 30 days of no rain in a village near Balqis, 260 km northeast of Cairo. EGYPT: June 17, 2008. Reuters. Photo by NASSER NURI. Image may be subject to copyright. See FEWW Fair Use Notice!

Posted in carbon emmission, Climate Change, CO2, energy, environment, food, GHG, Global Warming, health, politics, Travel | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

The myth of keeping CO2 under 450ppm

Posted by feww on April 8, 2008

E = mc²

Therefore, CO2 ≤ 450ppm = NO Climate Change!

Yay! We can keep the CO2 under 450ppm AND stop the climate change!

Posted in Climate Change, CO2, environment, GHG, myth | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

EPA Sued Over GHG Pollution

Posted by feww on April 3, 2008

The states of Massachusetts, Arizona, California, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington sued the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) yesterday for failing to limit greenhouse gas emissions from new cars and trucks. The lawsuit came one year after the Supreme Court ruled that the agency had the power to do so.

Main Entry: 18 States Sue EPA Over GHG Pollution
Original Report: 18 states sue EPA over greenhouse gas pollution

Posted in air pollution, air travel, Al Gore, cars, EPA, GHG, government, health, lawsuit, pollution, trucks | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

 
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