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Easy Climate Action

Written By: - Date published: 12:35 pm, November 6th, 2018 - 55 comments
Categories: activism, climate change, Environment, global warming, International, journalism, Media, politicans, Politics, science - Tags: , , ,

Unlike the civil disobedience of Extinction Rebel that Micky posted on last week, EndClimateSilence (as reported by The Canary) is more about forcing a change in the narrative around global warming from the comfort of wherever you happen to be.

It’s an initiative coming out from the US, that in the first place is simply seeking to help politicians and media outlets enunciate or spell the words “global warming” and “climate change”. Aside from bombarding journalists for arsehole reporting, they boost journalists who make the explicit links between extreme weather events, climate change and CO2 emissions.

As their “about” page puts it

EndClimateSilence.org is a volunteer organization dedicated to helping the media link stories about climate-change impacts to climate change itself. Mobilizing through digital activism, we focus on all media platforms —from television networks to print outlets to online content providers to radio programs. We are motivated by the awareness that climate change poses a grave danger to humanity and we must transition from fossil fuels to safe energy immediately in order to preserve a planet that supports civilization. We see that climate change has begun to hurt people, and it’s the media’s job to report on that fact.

And that’s cool. If you’re on twitter you can throw your own digital encouragement into the mix, because this is how woeful acknowledgement of global warming is, at least across some US TV outlets. (The full report can be downloaded here)

 

They also hope to bolster the bridge of communication between the scientific community and media – a chasm that badly needs to be bridged far better than it currently is.

And they’re also looking to engage in what might be called “outreach” by way of engaging with schools and colleges. I like that bit. There’s a famous quote about “Give me a child…” that I can’t quite remember, and that I’ve no doubt someone will complete. (Is it from the Jesuits?) Anyway…

Just before posting, a thought struck me. We’ve probably all seen that Fawlty Towers sketch “Don’t Mention the War”, yes? (It’s behind the link if you haven’t) Can you imagine that attitude of ‘proper silence’ prevailing between ’39 and ’45? No. Neither can I. So what’s with this nonsense that we’re forever skirting around climate change and global warming?

EndClimateSilence can be followed and retweeted on twitter: @EndClimtSilence (that’s not a mis-spelling) with the hashtag: #EndClimateSilence

Post script.

The garbage reporting is beautifully illustrated by this woeful 13min and 45sec report by Ben Noll and Chris Brandolino on the stuff website presenting NIWA’s “Climate Outlook”. Not a single mention of climate change or global warming in any of it (H/T Ed)

55 comments on “Easy Climate Action ”

  1. RedLogix 1

    Looks good Bill. Smart action and a good looking website.

    For what it’s worth I’ve noticed the Australian media taking the issue a bit more seriously in the past year or so.

    They also hope to bolster the bridge of communication between the scientific community and media – a chasm that badly needs to be bridged far better than it currently is.

    It’s a tricky one. Science is essentially the domain of facts; while the majority of people and the media deal primarily with values and their expression. The last thing most scientists want is for their work to be cross-contaminated with value driven thinking, especially ideological political thinking. While most non-science trained people have a lot of trouble dis-entangling them.

    And after many, many conversations at work and socially on this with many people, the problem they have with this issue is not really the science (even when they say it is); it’s with the underlying values and politics that have bedeviled this story right from the start.

  2. Tony Veitch [not etc.] 2

    Not sure if the quote is word perfect, but it goes like this:

    “Give me a child until they’re seven, and they’re mine for life.”

    And very true it is. Get climate change into school ‘bigly.’ And yes, it is from the Jesuits.

  3. SpaceMonkey 3

    Excellent. I think this has been a key missing piece… coordinated effort to get the media linking relevant stories to climate change. It’s a good start to get the masses along on the journey (coz they’re on it whether they like it or not). By making it conscious it may enable people to feel more empowered about it. And that said, getting the language right is very important as many authors and commenters here will know that words resonate in different ways.

    Bill, I believe the quote is “give me a child until he is 7 and I will show you the man” and I think it’s actually by Aristotle.

  4. Poission 5

    Not a single mention of climate change or global warming in any of it

    Why? The foehn phenomena is well described in NZ for around 150 years.

    http://rsnz.natlib.govt.nz/volume/rsnz_07/rsnz_07_00_001570.html

    http://rsnz.natlib.govt.nz/volume/rsnz_07/rsnz_07_00_001540.html

    do you have a mechanism of why the westerly wind belts do not expand towards the equator following a weakening of the antarctic vortex ?

    http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/precip/CWlink/daily_ao_index/hgt.aao.shtml

    • Bill 5.1

      Aw ffs, here we fcking go…

      Air temps slated to be above average. Why?
      Sea temps slated to be above average. Why?
      El Nino “not” an El Nino, but extending beyond it’s usual duration…Why?

      No underlying driver. No reason. These things “just happen”. 🙄

      • bwaghorn 5.1.1

        I suggest that anyone who thinks cc isn’t a thing should go sit in a confined space with a car running for a bit and tell me that pouring gases into a closed area has no effect .

        • Antoine 5.1.1.1

          But your confined space example is nothing to do with global warming. The Earth’s atmosphere is not a closed system, it is subject to solar input, that’s kinda the whole point.

          A.

      • Poission 5.1.2

        Read what i said.ie The foehn phenomena

        This is a physical mechanism on a rotating plant with a barrier (read mountain range)

        https://www.weatheronline.co.nz/reports/wind/The-foehn-effect-image.htm

        The dissipative effect of heat via compression is an obvious outcome.

        the regime shift that occured for this event was a phase switch in the antarctic oscillation from +ve/-ve.

        http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/precip/CWlink/daily_ao_index/aao/aao_index.html

        The westerly wind belts expand from the southern ocean to mid to subtropical latitudes and guess what.

        https://climatereanalyzer.org/wx_frames/gfs/ds/gfs_nh-sat6_mslp_1-day.png

        el nino has yet to occur(it has a resonable probability 2/3 of a weak modoki )

        Both el nino and la nina peak in boreal winter (as they modelock to the annual cycle)

        Large el nino which occur on decade scales may even disappear (because they can)

        • lprent 5.1.2.1

          Large el nino which occur on decade scales may even disappear (because they can)

          It is more the intensity and duration of the events that seems to have kept rising since the 50s.

          You can see it most clearly in a longer term chart. For instance the one below.

          https://ggweather.com/enso/oni.htm

          It is pretty much what you’d expect when there is more heat energy sloshing around in a volatile heat absorbing mediums – especially water. In the end that heat has to cause transfers of the energy between varying regions.

          The southern oscillation is actually a relatively benign transfer. God help us if it shifts into a different mode – it is liable to be a lot less friendly to human societies.

          • greywarshark 5.1.2.1.1

            I like Dennis Frank 7/11 7.33 final two paras as a good pointer to how things are as far as climate-change change is or not?

            Why? For the left, jobs. For the right, business. Since remedial action requires elimination of jobs & business, left/right solidarity has won. Democracy is a numbers game, and no amount of complaining or hectoring by alarmists was able to prevail over the economic dependency of the left and right on oil. A powerful addiction.

            The solution to the agw problem is the same as it was when we first figured the situation out 30 years ago: weaning industry off fossil fuels. Democracy ensures that such a radical policy option cannot be implemented. Thus the status quo persists…

            and Andre 7/11 9.02
            There’s plenty of examples of non-capitalist societies happily fucking up their environments with the same behaviours that are causing climate change

            The thing that links capitalist societies and climate change closely is that capitalism speeds up activity and is bent on growth and profit for longer and more effectively than non-capitalists. That is the reason that we have climate change as we do; capitalism has been so successful at using the world’s resources exponentially.

            Non-capitalist societies have been lumbering behind but when they have made all the mistakes of capitalist societies (smog in China matching smog in London till mid 20th century I think?) so now they have to do much, but the caps started it and at the high and vast output that has led to CC.

          • Poission 5.1.2.1.2

            El nino is both a mechanism for teleconnection, and a recipient ( due to reflection)

            If you see the Pacific decadal oscillation and the last 2 large el nino.

            http://www.woodfortrees.org/graph/hadcrut4sh/from:1997/mean:12/normalise/plot/jisao-pdo/from:1997/mean:12/normalise.

            The ENSO complex system is also a redistribution of ocean mass.

            As the thermacline shoals there is cold dense water rising which increases the potential available energy and reduces the kinetic .so there is a limit cycle.

            ,

    • RedLogix 5.2

      Poisson regularly posts this kind of misdirection. It’s worth reviewing the direct chain of evidence around CO2 and it’s role in climate change:

      We can accurately measure the effects of greenhouse gases on infrared radiation in the lab. (I have worked with industrial instrumentation on a daily basis for years, that absolutely depend on this data being correct; telling me otherwise provokes a scornful reaction.) From this we can work out what happens if we increase the amount of greenhouse gases (such as CO2) in the atmosphere. They reduce the amount of radiation the Earth loses to space so it has to warm up to compensate.

      We can measure atmospheric CO2 concentrations accurately. Because CO2 is very long-lived and well mixed (i.e. it doesn’t quickly react with other stuff and get converted to something else) CO2 measurements in one place are pretty much the same as every other place.

      We can attribute the CO2 increase to human fossil fuel burning because CO2 from these sources tends to contain more light carbon isotopes than CO2 already in the atmosphere. This is because plants (the ultimate source of fossil fuels) prefer to take up light carbon isotopes rather than heavy ones.

      We are aware of other factors that can affect climate: volcanic eruptions, solar activity, human aerosol particle emissions, and redistribution of heat from the atmosphere to the ocean on a range of timescales. We can quantify these effects and find they cannot explain recent warming. Likewise, we can quantify the effect of CO2 and other greenhouse gases and find they can explain recent warming.

      All this is basic incontrovertible science and if the planetary climate was this simple, there would no argument, no debate and no obfuscation. The problem is that because climate is complex and non-deterministic at short time scales, we cannot predict exactly how much warming increasing CO2 will cause. We know the number will be positive and we know the highly probable range it lie within, but on the scale of human life experience it is easy for us to either neglect or deny it. On the other hand if you ask the Innuit people (and again I’ve had a first hand chance to do this), the changes in their lifetime, are not only exactly what the science predicts, but so dramatic as to be completely undeniable.

      The problem is not with the facts; or even how they’re interpreted. Even the most elementary consideration of the precautionary principle would advise us to wean ourselves off fossil carbon as quickly as can be reasonably achieved.

      The problem lies elsewhere.

      • Bill 5.2.1

        I know he/she constantly throws up such stuff. Normally I ignore it.

        Anyway, for what it’s worth, my stripped down way of looking at it – at least for today – goes something like this.

        Climate is the dissipation of a given amount of energy through complex and interlocking systems that we experience as weather. Add to the overall amount of energy to be dissipated via additional heat, and it will dissipate with more intensity or violence.

        I dare say there might be examples of larger amounts of energy not dissipating with more violence than smaller amounts of energy, but hey….

        • RedLogix 5.2.1.1

          Exactly. And it’s been a while since I’ve linked to this guy, but for years Grant has been my goto reference for a solid interpretation of the science:

          https://tamino.wordpress.com/

          He is a professional statistician (I bought his textbook on the topic some years back) and extremely thorough. More than anything else I find him reliable, consistent and responsible in his approach. If you want to know why some denier is talking bollocks you can usually find it here; and learn a heap along the way.

          • One Two 5.2.1.1.1

            RL, the full facts are not being told…

            Pointing the finger at a solitary component, is denying there are other inputs…in my opinion such denial is no different from any other…

            Yes, wean off the polluting industry of oil and gas etc (FF is a misnomer BTW)…and good luck having WAR inc change direction..

            There is a bigger picture which needs to be talked about…openly…

            Ozone is a serious problem, the damaged and degraded up atmospheric layers included…

            CO2 is not in a silo, the problem…

            • RedLogix 5.2.1.1.1.1

              Yes of course there are ‘other’ inputs. Climate always changes and it’s not necessarily easy or obvious to untangle all the couplings so as to properly understand the impact of any single driver.

              But this doesn’t mean we can invoke the uncertainty to pretend we don’t understand CO2 and it’s clear cut role.

              As for O3 I’m not aware of any particular link to AGW. However it’s deeply instructive to consider the completely different responses to these two distinct atmospheric crisis’. One was accepted without political polarisation and denial, and reasonably effective action taken to address it in a timely fashion. The other was not. Why?

              • One Two

                Thanks for the response, RL…

                Agree with your comments

                If the answer to the question you pose in the final sentence, was publicly available…I could imagine a starkly contrasting discussion, on many serious topics, than what is generally ‘allowed’…

                You’re onto what I believe, is getting into the core…

                • Dennis Frank

                  Problem-solving requires cognition of the relation between cause & effect. With ozone-depletion, the correlation with cfc escape into the upper atmosphere was so well-established that no scientific dissent emerged, and the escalation had been so rapid over a few prior decades that any evasion of necessity to eliminate cfcs was not a credible policy option.

                  Then there was the easy path forward: stop cfc use in industry. No industrial lobby emerged to oppose that in the media. Consensus happened promptly right after the diagnosis.

                  With agw, cause & effect is only apparent to those capable of grasping the science behind the greenhouse effect, who accept that CO2 escalation correlates with heat escalation. The data tend to be persuasive only to those scientists who accept the theory. Everyone else has to take their opinion on faith.

                  Blind faith has not been an intelligent approach to life since the rise of science centuries ago. Those of us who prefer evidence-based public policy are therefore in a difficult philosophical situation!!

                  Henceforth the precautionary principle. We do what the judiciary does and decide on the basis of weight of evidence. The equation denial= false & believer=true is inappropriate when anyone capable of following the scientific reasoning from both camps knows each has merit on some points. The alarmists have way more valid points. That’s probably why the IPCC represents the consensus of climate scientists, right? Duh!

                  I’m not just addressing you two in this thread. Here’s the crux: democracy. Weight of scientific opinion has failed to produce consensus in global decision-making to ameliorate agw because of the countervailing influence of industry. That’s the key difference between the ozone-hole problem and the climate-change problem. On the side of industry you have had leftist and rightist governments of various countries lining up in denial.

                  Why? For the left, jobs. For the right, business. Since remedial action requires elimination of jobs & business, left/right solidarity has won. Democracy is a numbers game, and no amount of complaining or hectoring by alarmists was able to prevail over the economic dependency of the left and right on oil. A powerful addiction.

                  The solution to the agw problem is the same as it was when we first figured the situation out 30 years ago: weaning industry off fossil fuels. Democracy ensures that such a radical policy option cannot be implemented. Thus the status quo persists…

                  • RedLogix

                    Weight of scientific opinion has failed to produce consensus in global decision-making to ameliorate agw because of the countervailing influence of industry.

                    This is all true and well documented; but I suspect is an insufficient explanation. There is another part of the narrative …. that many on the hard left have used climate change as a Trojan Horse for their real project, ‘smashing capitalism’.

                    The vast majority of people don’t want a bar of this (rightly or wrongly) and unwilling to untangle fact from value, remain obstinately suspicious of the science. As long as the left continues to contaminate this issue with a covert neo-marxism, most of the people with real influence and opportunity to take the critical actions needed, will drag their heels.

                    • Pat

                      “The vast majority of people don’t want a bar of this (rightly or wrongly) and unwilling to untangle fact from value, remain obstinately suspicious of the science.”

                      Valid observation

                    • Andre

                      I find it really irritating when activists link climate change and capitalism. They really are separate issues with strong arguments for each, but linking them really damages the credibility of the individual arguments.

                      There’s plenty of examples of non-capitalist societies happily fucking up their environments with the same behaviours that are causing climate change, while most of the tech advancements that are helping to reduce climate changing emissions are a direct result of there being a buck to be made, ie capitalism.

                    • RedLogix

                      @Andre

                      Nicely put.

                      Hungry people don’t care about carbon dioxide, poor people can do nothing about it even if they do care. It’s only the ‘despised’ top 1% who have the opportunity to drive the innovation, investment, regulation, policies and marketing needed that we stand any chance of us getting through this crisis relatively unscathed.

                      And if you care to look … (as an engineering types we probably both share the same curiosity around this) … there is a staggering amount of research and product development going on. We only need a fraction of it to break through to make the difference.

                    • Bill

                      @ Andre.

                      I guess I’m one of those who irritates you then…by drawing the link?

                      Yes, the USSR spewed CO2, but it no longer exists. So basically, the only game in town as far as an economy goes, is capitalism. And it thrives on fossil. WIthout consuming ever more of it, it can’t grow. If it doesn’t grow it collapses.

                      Getting rid of fossil and maintaining capitalism would be a very neat trick.

                      Economists insist that CO2 reduction can only be about 5% if a capitalist economy is to be maintained. Scientists say CO2 reductions have to be about 10% if our current biosphere is to be maintained.

                      I’ve never been a fan of capitalism. But I don’t need sneak any anti-capitalist agenda into anything about global warming.

                      To put it simply. It seems economists and their priorities don’t care about physics. And physics for it’s part doesn’t care about that.

                    • Antoine

                      > Economists insist that CO2 reduction can only be about 5% if a capitalist economy is to be maintained.

                      Got a link on that? (he said curiously)

                      A.

                    • Pat

                      @Antoine

                      There are numerous papers a google search will discover however the simple riposte is what contemporary school of economic thought dosnt include growth as its foundation?

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      I find it really irritating when activists link climate change and capitalism. They really are separate issues with strong arguments for each, but linking them really damages the credibility of the individual arguments.

                      Well, it is the capitalists that are preventing the action needed to slow down GHG emissions necessary to slow down anthropogenic climate change.

                      There’s plenty of examples of non-capitalist societies happily fucking up their environments with the same behaviours that are causing climate change, while most of the tech advancements that are helping to reduce climate changing emissions are a direct result of there being a buck to be made, ie capitalism.

                      Name three.

                      And the tech advancements would probably happen without capitalism. After all, the people actually doing the tech are doing it because they enjoy doing so or have no choice. They’re not the ones making the profit.

                    • Bill

                      @ Antoine.

                      The theoretical world of economics trumps physics.

                      Aside from what Pat has written…

                      Go through every major climate model. Find one that incorporates a reduction of CO2 in line with what scientists say is required for an outside chance of avoiding really bad levels of warming (ie – 10% p.a.)

                      You won’t find any.

                      Go to the IPCC and dig through their literature. You will see that economic viability is a pre-requisite for any scenario being accepted into an IPCC framework.

                      The only way to do that is to fudge parameters (unrealistic peak dates, and lower than observed rates of emission)…and technological assumptions around BECCS.

                      Or if you want a source that is someone who has already done all of that, then search out Kevin Anderson presentations, some of which are a run through the above. And reflect that no reputable source has ever challenged the validity of Kevin Anderson’s analysis.

                    • Andre

                      @Bill, normally I’d be reluctant to fill Red’s replies tab, but since he’s got quite an interest in this aspect of the topic …

                      Frankly, yes, your linking climate change and capitalism does irritate me. And yes, I think it’s counterproductive to addressing climate change and addressing the real problems our current flavour of capitalism creates to link them.

                      I strongly disagree with “… it thrives on fossil…”. Capitalism (and just about every other way of living attractive to most people) thrives on cheap readily available energy. It doesn’t matter for most people and most uses where that energy comes from, as long as it’s plentiful and cheap.

                      It’s a matter of history how we’ve developed around fossil fuel energy, but for many uses direct electrical energy is actually better, and for process heat applications electrical energy is just slightly less convenient than fossil. Long haul aviation only significant fossil fuel user we couldn’t switch to zero-emissions energy (mostly electric) as quickly as we care to rebuild the infrastructure, and the world currently produces almost as much liquid biofuel as long haul aviation uses.

                      The transition to electric is happening already, because the electric option has broken the price barrier for stationary users, and is breaking the battery price barrier for mobile users.

                      Within a capitalist/markets structure, we could accelerate that transition by pricing the externalities of fossil fuel use, ie climate change and other environmental degradation, as well as removing the various subsidies fossil fuels enjoy (such as aviation and shipping are exempt from many of the taxes other fossil fuel users pay). That’s an approach favoured across the political spectrum.

                      Or we can let it continue to happen slowly by linking the climate change argument to other issues people don’t want to address, and by also opposing the many part-improvement individual measures on the grounds that the part-improvement measure isn’t the whole answer so it’s not worth bothering with.

                      By linking climate change and smashing capitalism, it’s taking two separate problems that could be addressed separately and mushing them together into one big problem. Which gives people that don’t think any particular part of the big mushed-together problem actually is a problem a good reason to reject doing anything at all about any part of the problem.

                    • Andre

                      @DTB “Name three”

                      Bill’s already alluded to the USSR.

                      Ancient Mayan and Indus Valley peoples are just the next two that sprung to mind that showed the behaviours of excessive growth and resource exploitation leading to lack of resilience then decline/collapse.

                  • KJT

                    https://www.jasonhickel.org/blog/2018/10/27/degrowth-a-call-for-radical-abundance

                    Capitalism has manufactured scarcity, and increasing resource use, which it depends on to work.

                    Not to say that Capitalism, on the level of I plant crops, and sell them to you, in return for your skills in building my house, doesn’t work. Financial capitalism only works to concentrate wealth and power. Which suits those who have the wealth, perfectly.

                    And communist countries are just as capitalist as the West, just run a bit differently.
                    Neither are Democratic. Money rules.

  5. Jenny 6

    …..They also hope to bolster the bridge of communication between the scientific community and media – a chasm that badly needs to be bridged far better than it currently is…..

    Bill

    Hopefully, this might help

    Powerful new supercomputer ready to provide glimpse into NZ’s climate future
    Amber-Leigh Woolf – Stuff.co.nz, November 6, 2018

    If you’re going to tackle the big questions surrounding climate change, you’re going need a big computer to provide the answers.

    Fortunately, the National Institute for Water and Atmospheric Research (Niwa) now has one of the biggest in the country.

    Its new $23 million supercomputer comes in three parts. Two of the sections – nicknamed Māui and Mahuika – roar loudly all day in a locked bunker in the Wellington suburb of Evans Bay. The third section, Kupe, resides in Auckland…..

    …..FitzRoy, Niwa’s previous supercomputer, which last year helped forecast a future where Wellington was as hot as Sydney and the Wairarapa was plagued by droughts by 2090 if greenhouse gas emissions continue unabated.

    But FitzRoy could not keep up with the modern-day demands of climate modelling. Its replacement has up to 13 times the computing capability, more than six times the storage capacity, and provides more than 33,500 compute cores – equivalent to about 16,000 laptops.

    “There are a whole lot of people that use this to create amazing things, and we use it for climate modelling, to look at New Zealand’s climate and emissions, and different scenarios in the future and what that might mean,” Dean said.

    The new supercomputer will be able to lead investigations into climate change, geonomics, ocean system dynamics, freshwater flows, and artificial intelligence networks.

    Dean said it could measure the impact of future weather events. The results would give people the information they needed to avoid hazards and adapt to the challenges of climate change.

    Uddstrom said FitzRoy, which was installed in 2010, has been dismantled and the recycled, he said.

    “Previous NeSI research was taking days to complete … in the new infrastructure, it’s completed in about four hours.”

    Stuff

    The first two questions I would like to ask these NIWA boffins and their new Supercomputer are;

    1/ Which low lying New Zealand city is most likely to be hit by a devastating climate change fueled Superstorm?

    2/ When is the earliest we can expect this event to occur?

    • Jenny 6.1

      If this level of detailed scientific forecast can be achieved, and if it doesn’t work to focus the minds of our journalists and politicians, and galvanise the public to demand action, then I don’t know what will. (Apart that is; from the inevitable occurrence of this horrific event itself),

      • Antoine 6.1.1

        > If this level of detailed scientific forecast can be achieved

        Of course anyone can make a detailed forecast, however this doesn’t mean the forecast is going to be right.

        > if it doesn’t work to focus the minds of our journalists and politicians, and galvanise the public to demand action, then I don’t know what will

        [hollow laughter] Because everyone listens to scientists!

        A.

    • Antoine 6.2

      > The first two questions I would like to ask these NIWA boffins and their new Supercomputer are;
      > 1/ Which low lying New Zealand city is most likely to be hit by a devastating climate change fueled Superstorm?
      > 2/ When is the earliest we can expect this event to occur?

      What you need to appreciate is that they don’t know the answers to your questions. Even if they think they do (although the smart ones tend to know their limits).

      If you’re worried about storms then Focus on your own preparedness (and encourage others to do the same) rather than trying to predict the unpredictable.

      A.

    • Bill 6.3

      Hopefully, this might help

      As far as I’m aware, mice are just mice. And 42 is just a number.

      A computer capable of predicting the dynamics of hugely chaotic systems would have contain all the data points of all of the systems…probably as a snapshot, ie at the same moment in time…an impossibility.

      Or are the mice up to something? 😉

      • Jenny 6.3.1

        I am talking about probability, not certainty.

        What use is this hugely expensive Super Computer if it can’t determine probability ?

        As for all the data points. How many do they need to get a probability?

        We know Tropical cyclones are increasing in strength.

        We know that tropical zone cities like Tacloban in the Philippines which are presumably used to regular hurricanes are being leveled by this new type of tropical cyclone.

        We know that these climate change fueled cyclones are moving outside their traditional range both North and Southwards.

        We know that warm seas are the fuel of hurricanes

        We know that the seas around New Zealand are warming.

        We know that some coastal cities are more vulnerable to storms than others. Geography, elevation, direction facing, type of construction etc.

        I asked the very same question over at Hot Topic, to be told that according to them, such an event is a near certainty within the next twenty years. Right or wrong they made this prediction without a Super Computer.

        I expect Niwa to do far better.

        I mean, now that they have got this Super Computer, what else will they be trying to determine, if not this?

        Even without a Super Computer I would pick that the city of Tauranga would be wiped off the map if it was struck with a Super Storm. I would also predict with some confidence that this probability will increase with time.

        I would expect that Niwa using their new computer could narrow in on the probable time line for this event, and its strength and level of destruction.

        During Typhoon Haiyan, seawater up to 30 feet deep covered much of Tacloban within minutes, drowning more than 6,000 people. Evacuation centers lost their roofs to winds that were nearly double the speed and four times the force of those now lashing the Carolinas from Hurricane Florence. Thousands of bodies lined roadsides afterward, or lay clustered in homes and even lodged in bushes and trees.

        Typhoon Haiyan destroyed so many homes across the central Philippines that it displaced nearly four million people. Many of the survivors, particularly in Tacloban, ran short of food, water and medicine almost immediately.

        A long convoy of Red Cross trucks tried to reach the city ahead of the storm, but had to turn back when winds rose sooner than expected. When the convoy tried to make the trip after the storm, rioting mobs of hungry survivors stopped it and tried looting it. That prompted the convoy to turn back again, and prevented it from reaching the devastated city until days later.

        https://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/14/world/asia/typhoon-mangkhut-philippines-haiyan.html

        What I want to know is, what are the probabilities of this happening for Tauranga?

        And when?

        • Antoine 6.3.1.1

          > What I want to know is, what are the probabilities of this happening for Tauranga? And when?

          What we’re telling you is that you are out of luck. NIWA don’t know, even if they claim they do, which I doubt.

          One point of consolation. If you want to know how many super storms will occur between now and 2050, this is straightforward! Just get a piece of paper and a pencil, wait for 32 years and make a tally mark whenever a super storm happens. In 2050 count the number of tally marks. This is definitely the most accurate approach.

          A.

  6. One Two 7

    Perhaps you should also ask them why, despite being one of the highest funded, kitted up industries in the history of our species, they still can’t predict the weather consistently…

    I wouldn’t get too excited about the technology, Jenny…data is data…

    See my link at #4, for some interesting and ironic material…

    • Jenny 7.1

      they still can’t predict the weather consistently…

      One Two

      How good are New Zealand weather forecasts?
      Richard Turner, Jim Renwick – NIWA, December 1, 2003

      Surprisingly good actually.

      …..it might surprise critics to learn that a five-day forecast in 2003 is as good as a one-day forecast was in 1953. This has been made possible through the development of reliable and accurate Numerical Weather Prediction (NWP) systems. NWP models probably rank among the great scientific achievements of the last century, on a par with the discovery of DNA and advances in understanding of atomic structure…..

      …..Part of the work done at NIWA over the past few years has been to analyse the skill of NWP models used widely by weather forecasters and scientists in New Zealand. The models’ performances were generally very encouraging. Modern forecast models were assessed to be very good at predicting the major features that control weather in New Zealand – the mainly eastward-moving cyclones and anticyclones….

      So One Two, if you were standing on the beach looking at a flat ocean, but NIWA was predicting 3m swells off the East Coast and issuing a high winds warning, in my opinion you would be be very foolish to take to the water in a tinny for a spot of fishing off the Coromandel.

  7. WeTheBleeple 8

    A supercomputer and NIWA to save the day by making predictions? Yeah nah. Hopefully it helps us with adaptation like it says on the sticker. Probably running on coal lolz.

    It’s still in the hands of media to relay information to public. Scientists relay more than enough data already to cause alarm, but are met by media mehness.

    I like this initiative re tell the media to do their freakin jobs. Are they printing the big issues, they don’t get much bigger than global catastrophe except, you know: royal attire; National’s mental health initiatives; the Ye formerly known as Kanye; and Heather’s opinion of Audrey’s piece about Hosking’s bit.

    And it can get a LOT worse than that.

    I think I’d prefer global warming.

    • Antoine 8.1

      > A supercomputer and NIWA to save the day by making predictions? Yeah nah. Hopefully it helps us with adaptation like it says on the sticker.

      For adaptation, I’d rather have a sandbag than a supercomputer.

      A.

  8. Chris 9

    Sure, greed behind climate change needs to be fought against, for a lot of reasons other than climate change. But surely the increasing number of natural disasters we experience around the world will end up, at some point, being too many to cope with. They just keep happening, and are getting worse and worse. On top of this there’s population growth. It may be because of greed that this happens, or it may be because, like humans, the Earth, as a planet, is a temporary thing. Planets die. We may very well be able the curb things for a while but eventually things run out. The fight against climate change assumes victory is the continuation of life on earth. It may the case that a successful climate change result is merely postponing the earth’s inevitable demise.

  9. Antoine 10

    I think you can lose a lot of people by saying “this specific weather event X was caused by climate change” – when this is unprovable.

    Better a more nuanced statement like “weather events of type X appear to be becoming more frequent” or “more weather events of type X are expected due to climate change”.

    A.

  10. WeTheBleeple 11

    Today’s election outcome is a huge deal for climate change action. What is being reported on:

    Markets steady

    Markets stalled

    Sterling holds

    How will the markets react

    Etc

    Absolutely entwined in their own self important speculations. Invested with their own dollars one might suspect.

    The ‘innocent’ are full of it. An investor in the perpetrators of war crimes is a war criminal. How deep are these reporters who prop this filthy monster up. A few shares, a sponsorship deal, a boss who dictates the narrative…

    Barely a mention of how the election has implications for minorities, women, non-Christians, global warming, war mongering, or the planet.

    Fake News. The clown has a point. There’s no way he could have leveraged America to such an extent without at least some evidence or pattern indicating he was right. People’s frustration with the press easily converts to distrust. Why would I ever trust anything the Herald prints ever again?

    They’ve fucked themselves. National being competent is fake news. No elephant in the room is fake news. It’s all the fools can print. Controversy is where you ask old people what they think of teens… Our media are largely a joke, puppets and muppets. Send them dog shit. It’s what they’d have us swallow on any given day.

  11. Greg #56 12

    Not until Chris ‘Brangelina’ Brandolino has lived on these shores for at least 30 years (span of a ‘climate cycle’ according to the WMO) will I ever even consider listening to his “darn” verbal nonsense. As usual for his over-dramatic and over-hyping type – an ex-USA TV weather presenter turned NZ NIWA climate noddy – he amps up the warm front / foehn wind effect, yet (in)conveniently leaves out the half-metre-plus of snow, the sub-zero temps, the -10˚C wind chill the next few days’ blizzard conditions will bring to parts of the South Island – in November –

    https://www.metservice.com/skifields/mt-hutt

    Besides, whatever happened to the ‘warming’? Has it finally runaway – to Venus or maybe Mars – as there’s not a lot of it around this planet: October’s anomaly for global temps is now almost back down to zero, barely hovering above on a miniscule 0.22˚C or 1/5th of a degree –

    https://www.nsstc.uah.edu/climate/

    And the sun’s almost into its 4th week of no sunspots whatsoever – blank and quiet – hence the loopy jet streams in both hemispheres dumping freezing snow (naturally preceded by warm air being pushed ahead of it) all over the show. You do know it was freezing and snowing in Australia today, right? Wrap up warm!

    • RedLogix 12.1

      You do know it was freezing and snowing in Australia today, right?

      Given that it was 35 degC and humid as hell in Brisbane today, I thought to double check that statement at various weather sites. The two cool cities, Canberra and Hobart looked like normal spring days. Maybe it snowed high in the Victorian Alps or Mt Wellington as it often does. I’m sure Ballarat was it’s usual miserable chilly 🙂

      Nice big front moving through, doing exactly what they usually do in springtime. Not at all sure what you’re smoking there Greg.

      • Greg #56 12.1.1

        R.L., when I lived on the Sunshine Coast (an hour’s north of Brizzo) 30 years ago it was 35˚C and muggy as paradise in November – obviously not a lot of change goin’ on there during the past ‘climate cycle’. Can’t remember it ever freezing or snowing in NSW or VIC in November though…

        Breaking: Settled Scientism believers shocked to discover warming causes freezing! More research funds needed. Send money to –

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