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Human climate disruption [Jun. 18th, 2006|09:27 pm]
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Update post coming soon, but first:

I read this annoying editorial in the newspaper this morning about global warming (which I'm going to refer to as "human climate disruption" instead, because calling it "global warming" misleads the discussion). Actually, I only read about half of it, because as I said, it was annoying.

I was pondering a counter-letter to the editor, but then I realized that it was unlikely to do any good if I didn't address the issues in contention. If you're going to try and change somebody's mind with new information, you have to figure out what information would actually matter, or all you're going to do is add heat to the disagreement.

And so, a quiz:

So, whaddaya think about anthropogenic (human-caused) climate change?

A) It's totally happening
B) A lot of people say it's true, but I'm not convinced
C) I hear arguments for and against, and I'm not sure what to think
D) I think it's some kind of hoax
E) Other

If you answered anything other than A, I'd like to try and change your mind, so leave a comment explaning why (generally speaking) you don't find the idea persuasive.

I was thinking that I'd write a short explanation of the physics involved, because it's actually pretty straightforward. But I want to know whether that's actually where the disagreement arises...

[User Picture]From: polyrhythmic
2006-06-19 02:14 pm (UTC)
I do believe climate change is occurring. You can give me the evidence that it is primarily anthropogenic. But your first hurdle is likely to be making me listen to the evidence without turning off my ears because you are then going to tell me how the fact that I fly across the country on a regular basis is killing the fish. I don't want to think of myself as a fish-killer, so it's easier for me to hear and remember the parts of the debate that say "Well, maybe the change in climate is just a natural phenomenon and the ocean levels are going to rise a bit each year, but it's so slow that we'll have plenty of time to move farther inland and SCIENCE is going to solve the problem for us before it matters, even if we don't actually fund the research cause it's too scary" than any more reasonable statements.
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[User Picture]From: melted_snowball
2006-06-19 04:24 pm (UTC)
You won't be able to read this article unless you subscribe, but it is sobering to think of an airplane as a several hundred to a few thousand long caravan of cars in the stratosphere. [And, of course, I fly a ton, too.] I'm fairly certain that flying is the single worst thing I do for the environment.
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