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(USA Today)   Scientists discover that the increase in weather disasters is linked to a change in climate. Still no cure for cancer   (usatoday.com) divider line 64
    More: Obvious, weather disasters, cure for cancer, U.S. Virgin Islands, study period, Munich Re, water content  
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1551 clicks; posted to Main » on 10 Oct 2012 at 11:49 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-10-10 06:57:23 PM
What should I do with this information? Get an umbrella? Spend more time worrying? Build up the levees in New Orleans?
 
2012-10-10 07:02:15 PM

douchebag/hater: WHICH scientists?
WHAT are their specialties?
HAVE they dealt with climate before?
WHO pays them their grants?
etc, etc, etc.


Exactly. I remember in decades gone by there were 'scientists' who disputed that smoking was linked to lung cancer. Now I wonder who they worked for?
 
2012-10-10 07:24:38 PM

common sense is an oxymoron: Combining several decades' worth of hurricanes under increasingly high CO2 levels with a centuries-old record of storms under stable, low CO2 levels to suggest an inverse correlation between CO2 and storm count is all too typical of what passes for science among deniers.


Yet those same data sets, with their increasingly accurate observations of previously unrecorded weather phenomena, are just fine to use to show an increasing number of events...
 
2012-10-10 08:10:33 PM
Scientists discover that the increase in weather disasters is linked to a change in climate. Still no cure for the Tropic of cancer

Fixed.

/axial tilt and such
 
2012-10-11 12:30:10 AM

This text is now purple: common sense is an oxymoron: Combining several decades' worth of hurricanes under increasingly high CO2 levels with a centuries-old record of storms under stable, low CO2 levels to suggest an inverse correlation between CO2 and storm count is all too typical of what passes for science among deniers.

Yet those same data sets, with their increasingly accurate observations of previously unrecorded weather phenomena, are just fine to use to show an increasing number of events...


You missed the point.

Regardless of the validity of the data (and since the data set in this case is "landfalling US hurricanes," it's about as clear-cut and unambiguous as you can get), the graph sucks simply because there are far more years in the historical record with CO2 levels below 320 ppm (pretty much every year prior to 1965) than there are years with higher CO2 levels. Plotting "landfalling US hurricanes" versus "CO2 level" without adjusting for the bias toward low-CO2 years is misleading; whether it's a case of ignorance or deliberate deception is an open question.
 
2012-10-11 09:06:48 AM

Ambitwistor: authorizeduser: "The number of natural disasters per year has been rising dramatically on all continents since 1980"

32 years is a rather limited sample-size, for a planet that's 4.6 billion years-old.

The age of the planet is irrelevant. Tomorrow's weather doesn't depend on what the planet was doing a billion years ago. Neither does the climate over the next century.


Weather patterns can be extrapolated from a relatively small sample; climate cannot.
 
2012-10-11 10:57:51 AM
Although I absolutely believe the climate is changing, I am extremely skeptical of any report by an insurance company.
 
2012-10-11 12:24:46 PM

authorizeduser: Weather patterns can be extrapolated from a relatively small sample; climate cannot.


Physics says otherwise, but thanks anyway for your ignorant opinion. In fact, in many respects, climate is easier to extrapolate than weather, because you're talking about processes controlled by basic energy balance, where initial-value chaos is less important.
 
2012-10-11 12:26:36 PM

common sense is an oxymoron: Regardless of the validity of the data (and since the data set in this case is "landfalling US hurricanes," it's about as clear-cut and unambiguous as you can get), the graph sucks simply because there are far more years in the historical record with CO2 levels below 320 ppm (pretty much every year prior to 1965) than there are years with higher CO2 levels.


No kidding. A histogram of CO2 levels alone looks rather similar to the histogram of hurricanes by CO2 level. Even if there were the same number of hurricanes every year, a histogram by CO2 level would look skewed.
 
2012-10-11 12:27:26 PM

MediaAreAllHacks: Although I absolutely believe the climate is changing, I am extremely skeptical of any report by an insurance company.


Why? If there's anyone with motive to be as accurate as possible about weather disasters, it's an insurance company whose bottom line depends on accurately evaluating their risk.
 
2012-10-11 01:43:46 PM

Ambitwistor: authorizeduser: Weather patterns can be extrapolated from a relatively small sample; climate cannot.

Physics says otherwise, but thanks anyway for your ignorant opinion. In fact, in many respects, climate is easier to extrapolate than weather, because you're talking about processes controlled by basic energy balance, where initial-value chaos is less important.


Your right, of course. And based on your brilliant assessment, I've determined that we're heading for another ice age, because it's several degrees cooler than it was 3 months ago... 'cause sample-size is irrelevant, right?
 
2012-10-11 01:54:15 PM

authorizeduser: And based on your brilliant assessment, I've determined that we're heading for another ice age, because it's several degrees cooler than it was 3 months ago... 'cause sample-size is irrelevant, right?


You're just embarassing yourself here. Climate prediction is based on physics, not linearly extrapolating trends in data. Physics will tell you how much the planet warms and cools in response to changing insolation during the seasonal cycle, and it will tell you how much it warms and cools in response to non-solar energy inputs, such as the enhanced greenhouse effect.
 
2012-10-11 01:56:00 PM
authorizeduser:

Furthermore, even if you were attempting to predict climate by linearly extrapolating trends, it would be stupid to do a century-scale prediction based on a 4-billion year trend. Climate processes controlling variability at billion-year timescales are nearly irrelevant to the ones controlling century time-scales.
 
2012-10-11 01:59:17 PM

authorizeduser: And based on your brilliant assessment, I've determined that we're heading for another ice age, because it's several degrees cooler than it was 3 months ago... 'cause sample-size is irrelevant, right?


And, in fact, you can get a pretty decent estimate of the climate sensitivity to radiative imbalances (from solar radiation, greenhouse effect, or whatever) by studying the seasonal cycle alone. The estimate and error bars you get agree fairly well with the estimates made from other sources (historical instrumental data, paleoclimate reconstructions, etc.).
 
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