[Discussion] Climate Change

This thread is just to post interesting news, thoughts, opinions about climate change.

kazar wrote:

I live 80ft above sea level and I have started telling my wife that it might soon be time to sell our house and move to a state that is higher up. She thinks I am crazy.

We're (probably) starting house hunting in earnest in a couple of months. "At least 100ft above sea level" is on my list of mandatory requirements for the new house given that we live on the coast.

There was a high school children climate change rally recently and there's another one being organised imminently across Australia.

We have some politicians saying they're entitled to express concerns and others handwringing and complaining about the politicisation of children.

I'm kind of sympathetic to their cause given they will live through the first carbon and temperature break points.

Jonman wrote:
kazar wrote:

I live 80ft above sea level and I have started telling my wife that it might soon be time to sell our house and move to a state that is higher up. She thinks I am crazy.

We're (probably) starting house hunting in earnest in a couple of months. "At least 100ft above sea level" is on my list of mandatory requirements for the new house given that we live on the coast.

The worst IPCC scenario, RCP 8.5 (1370 ppm of CO2 or equivalent), puts the median sea level rise at 85 cm in 2100.

It's not going to be the sea level rise that'll get you, it'll be living on the coast where the added energy being pumped into the atmosphere and ocean will make hurricanes and tropical storms more frequent and powerful.

An 85cm MEDIAN sea rise implies much more massive PEAK sea rise and tidal range.

I'm also aware that even making sure my house itself isn't inundated isn't a great solution if the major transport routes and hubs where I live are.

There's also the problems with underground and near-surface utilities; storm drains and sanitary sewers; wells; all the ground-level infrastructure that *will* be affected when the sea level average goes up just a few feet (which 85cm could easily do near the coast). It's fine to say "Oh, well, this means 45 days of standing water in our neighborhood, instead of 30", but it also means sewage backups, power conduit degradation, and faster/farther salt water intrusions into regional aquifers. Not to mention flooded basements and other property issues.

I think the problem with owning land in these areas will come fairly suddenly, as ordinances are changes, or residents are hit for expensive flood/tide mitigation technologies. You may be 100 feet ASL, but what about your local sewage processing plant? Flood pumps? Highways? Electric substations? A lot of infrastructure gets built in places that are not desirable for residences or businesses...

Bfgp wrote:

There was a high school children climate change rally recently and there's another one being organised imminently across Australia the world.

FTFY

Climate strikes: students around the world walk out to demand change

Jonman wrote:

An 85cm MEDIAN sea rise implies much more massive PEAK sea rise and tidal range.

I'm also aware that even making sure my house itself isn't inundated isn't a great solution if the major transport routes and hubs where I live are.

My bad. 85 cm is the MEAN projected sea rise of the worst climate scenario, not the MEDIAN.

And it won't reach that level until 2100 which is probably long after both you and I are dead.

Models for "sea level extremes," including things like storm surges from hurricanes, would add between 1 to 3 meters on top of the mean sea level at that time.

If all ice on the planet were to melt, our seas would rise 70m or 230ft. With articles saying they are finding huge icebergs in Antarctica being hollow I have a feeling we are much closer then even the scientists are saying. Probably just doomsday thinking but sometimes being scared of nothing is better then ignoring something real.

It's completely reasonable to be extra cautious with stuff like this. Combining sea level rise, increased storm surge, and our overall error bars on our estimations, along with the fact that global sea level rise is NOT local sea level rise (the US East Coast in general may get worse than average rise, perhaps as much as twice as high) and a decision like "I want to be 100 feet above the sea rather than 80 feet" seems pretty reasonable.

you're all forgetting about the climate change meteor that strikes if the seas rise another foot.

FWIW....

3-5°C temperature rise is now ‘locked-in’ for the Arctic

Nairobi, 13 March 2019 – Even if the world were to cut emissions in line with the Paris Agreement, winter temperatures in the Arctic would rise 3-5°C by 2050 and 5-9°C by 2080, devastating the region and unleashing sea level rises worldwide, finds a new report by UN Environment.

Meanwhile, rapidly thawing permafrost could even accelerate climate change further and derail efforts to meet the Paris Agreement’s long-term goal of limiting the rise in global temperature to 2°C, warns Global Linkages - A graphic look at the changing Arctic.

Other environmental pressures on the Arctic identified by the paper – released at the United Nations Environment Assembly – include ocean acidification and plastic pollution.

“What happens in the Arctic does not stay in the Arctic,” said Joyce Msuya, UN Environment’s Acting Executive Director. “We have the science; now more urgent climate action is needed to steer away from tipping points that could be even worse for our planet than we first thought.”

Even if global emissions were to halt overnight, winter temperatures in the Arctic would still increase 4 to 5°C by 2100 compared to the late 20th century, the study finds. This increase is locked into the climate system by greenhouse gases already emitted and ocean heat storage.

Arctic societies now must respond to climate change through suitable adaptation actions. Arctic Indigenous Peoples already face increased food insecurity. By 2050, four million people, and around 70% of today’s Arctic infrastructure, will be threatened by thawing permafrost, the report notes.

“The urgency to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement is clearly manifested in the Arctic, because it is one of the most vulnerable and rapidly changing regions in the world,” said the Finnish Minister of the Environment, Energy and Housing, Kimmo Tiilikainen. “We need to make substantial near-term cuts in greenhouse gas emissions, black carbon and other so-called short-lived climate pollutants all over the world.”

The impacts globally would also be huge. From 1979 to the present, Arctic sea ice is estimated to have declined by 40%. Climate models predict that, at the current rate of CO₂ emissions, Arctic summers will be ice-free by the 2030s. The melting of the Greenland ice cap and Arctic glaciers contribute to one third of sea level rise worldwide.

Even if the Paris Agreement is met, Arctic permafrost is expected to shrink 45% compared to today. Globally, these frozen soils hold an estimated 1,672 billion metric tonnes of carbon. Increased thawing is expected to contribute significantly to carbon dioxide and methane emissions. The resulting warming will in turn lead to more thawing – an effect known as ‘positive feedback’. This accelerated climate change could even throw the Paris Agreement’s 2°C goal off track, the report underlines.

Dade County has an average height ASL of 6 feet... and that's what, 2.8 million people? The areas subject to periodic septic tank failure will probably double by 2030, and that's just one issue among many. Once the population outflux hits, it would be a massive migration by itself, but this will be happening all around low-lying coastal areas in the US...

Robear wrote:
Boogtehwoog wrote:

All I know is that I've been reading about doomsday theories for the past 11 years for any number of things and they haven't come to pass.

"80th floor, and still no problems!" said the falling man...

I think you're misinterpreting what I said. 7 years ago I was reading about how the methane clathrates were going to destabilize at any moment and runaway climate change was going to happen. Now scientists believ methane clathrates destabilization is a chronic, not acute, issue. Other doomsday stuff was that the world's economy was going to kerplode in 2009 and 2012 and that we were going to a barter-age economy. All related by "Experts" that had collated disparate bits of information.

You know what worrying about those got me? A lot of stress for no good reason. I'm not saying climate change is not a problem, but worrying about a potential doomsday scenario that's only a few years away is just pointless. If it happens, there was nothing you were going to be able to do about it. If it doesn't happen, you just wasted a lot of time and energy being worried over nothing.

Better to do what you can and focus on doing things to ameliorate the issue at hand, like pushing for greater climate change action, and trying to live as though you do have a future. Because if you live like you don't, you never will have a future.

I'm wondering how many states might try to follow a route Alabama is looking into in regards to electric vehicles and if it might hurt adoption rates.

They're currently looking into raising the gas tax by 10 cents per gallon that would go towards road maintenance. The issue lawmakers have with that is that they feel like electric vehicles would then be taking advantage of the roads without paying anything for their maintenance. The solution they're looking at is a new annual flat-rate registration and license fee: $200 for electric vehicles and $100 for plug-in hybrids. As things are right now, because of the high initial cost of most electric vehicles, I doubt a $200 annual charge is going to deter many people but once the technology becomes older and cheaper, some people just aren't going to want to pay a couple hundred bucks extra per year. It's going to be about money, not environmental considerations. To get to $200 in revenue per year under a 10 cent gas tax a person would have to average buying $40 a week in gas.

BoogtehWoog wrote:
Robear wrote:
Boogtehwoog wrote:

All I know is that I've been reading about doomsday theories for the past 11 years for any number of things and they haven't come to pass.

"80th floor, and still no problems!" said the falling man...

I think you're misinterpreting what I said. 7 years ago I was reading about how the methane clathrates were going to destabilize at any moment and runaway climate change was going to happen. Now scientists believ methane clathrates destabilization is a chronic, not acute, issue. Other doomsday stuff was that the world's economy was going to kerplode in 2009 and 2012 and that we were going to a barter-age economy. All related by "Experts" that had collated disparate bits of information.

You know what worrying about those got me? A lot of stress for no good reason. I'm not saying climate change is not a problem, but worrying about a potential doomsday scenario that's only a few years away is just pointless. If it happens, there was nothing you were going to be able to do about it. If it doesn't happen, you just wasted a lot of time and energy being worried over nothing.

Better to do what you can and focus on doing things to ameliorate the issue at hand, like pushing for greater climate change action, and trying to live as though you do have a future. Because if you live like you don't, you never will have a future.

The more extreme predictions are the ones that make headlines (i.e. clickbait), be it science or economics.

Climate change is certainly one of (with a given that problems are interlinked) the major issues of the times. I agree with the sentiment, as I read the above, that it is better to look at the more extreme predictions as a call to action and not necessarily a future set in stone.