Siberian shelf methane emissions not tied to modern warming

English: Methane hydrate chunk with dissociati...

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Abstract

EOS, TRANSACTIONS AMERICAN GEOPHYSICAL UNION, VOL. 92, NO. 49, PAGE 464, 2011
doi:10.1029/2011EO490014

RESEARCH SPOTLIGHT

Siberian shelf methane emissions not tied to modern warming

Colin Schultz

American Geophysical Union, Washington, D. C., USA

Eight thousand years ago, a rising sea inundated the vast permafrost regions off the northern coast of Siberia. Comprising the modern east Siberian shelf, the region holds enormous quantities of methane hydrates bottled up in remnant subterranean permafrost zones that are, in turn, trapped beneath the ocean waters. Records of seafloor water temperature showing a 2.1°C rise since 1985, coupled with recent observations of methane emissions from the seabed, have led some scientists to speculate that the rising temperatures have thawed some of the subsurface permafrost, liberating the trapped methane. The connection is compelling, but an investigation by Dmitrenko et al. into the sensitivity of permafrost to rising temperatures suggests the two observations are not connected. Using a permafrost model forced with paleoclimate data to analyze changes in the depth of frozen bottom sediments, the authors found that roughly 1 meter of the subsurface permafrost thawed in the past 25 years, adding to the 25 meters of already thawed soil. Forecasting the expected future permafrost thaw, the authors found that even under the most extreme climatic scenario tested this thawed soil growth will not exceed 10 meters by 2100 or 50 meters by the turn of the next millennium. The authors note that the bulk of the methane stores in the east Siberian shelf are trapped roughly 200 meters below the seafloor, indicating that the recent methane emissions observations were likely not connected to the modest modern permafrost thaw. Instead, they suggest that the current methane emissions are the result of the permafrost’s still adjusting to its new aquatic conditions, even after 8000 years. (Journal of Geophysical Research-Oceans, doi:10.1029/2011JC007218, 2011)

Published 6 December 2011.

Citation: Schultz, C. (2011), Siberian shelf methane emissions not tied to modern warming, Eos Trans. AGU, 92(49), 464, doi:10.1029/2011EO490014.

This work does not discount the work due to be presented by Drs Semiletov and Shakhova sometime mid-year next year (2012). While the article from December 6th, above, indicates that the current evolution of methane may be from the condition change 8,000 years ago, it does not mean that we aren’t seeing some speed up due to localized warming, similar to stirring or scraping the bottom of a pan on the stove.

Regardless, this problem and the apparent acceleration of methane release has to be added to the efforts to deal with carbon gas emissions. So an increase now is not helping.

What if the GOP were the Climate Change Party?

(Ed note: This needs to be spread around… if you like it, pass it on!)

 

By James Thindwa
Some of us say what we believe, and believe what we say. Some of us even fight for what we believe. There are also those who claim to believe something or other, but won’t fight for it. That’s the way of the world. So let’s imagine a world only slightly different, with only the names changed to protect the guilty…
What If the GOP Was the Climate Change Party?
By James Thindwa
Imagine if you will, an alternative universe, in which the GOP believes in climate change, and the Democrats are the naysayers? How would a climate crusading Republican Party approach this most consequential issue?
In their customary hard-nosed fashion, the GOP would no doubt have made more progress on climate change—replete with tough regulations and high-minded international treaties—than we have seen so far. GOP politicians and talking heads would be making hay from all the horrible weather, beating the drums about the grave danger to our “national security” and way of life posed by climate change. They would be warning of gloom and doom and calling for—to hell with cap-and-trade—new legislation with stricter timetables for cutting greenhouse emissions, higher carbon taxes and stiffer penalties for polluters. And they would dare the president to veto it!
Republican politicians would be talking about climate change in town hall meetings, with obligatory reference to the increasingly ferocious tornadoes and hurricanes. “Climate change” and “green jobs” would become synonymous—a mantra seared into GOP political lexicon as Republicans declare that their legislation simultaneously creates jobs, limits greenhouse gases and stimulates the economy. Yes, Republicans would be ready to steamroll Democrats on this one.
For GOP leaders, Irene would be an opportunity to stoke the passions of environmentalists. They would urge activists to hold rallies in Washington and across the country. The GOP media machine—led by Roger Ailes at Fox—would parade environmental leaders on television and talk radio pontificating about local struggles to shut down polluting coal-fired plants, the imperative to raise CAFE standards for autos, insulate buildings and retrofit solar panels—the whole kitchen sink. Rightwing talking heads would be in full swing, prodding activists to hunt down “Democrat” lawmakers at “town halls” to demand they stop protecting Big Oil’s profits at the expense of our country’s future.
For GOP lighting rods like Michelle Bachmann and Sara Palin, climate change would be manna from heaven—red meat for the party faithful. They would be browbeating Democrats for standing in the way of strong regulations and shilling for corporate polluters (yes, they’d say it despite both parties’ footsy-playing with industry—they don’t care about the hypocrisy). Palin and Bachmann would be mocking Democrats for aligning themselves with a fringe element that hates science and would endanger our national security and the planet. Of course, GOP candidates would already have made climate change a central issue in the presidential election, and aiming to place it high up on the 2012 party platform.
GOP Vice-Presidential nominee Sarah Palin givi...

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As expected, GOP strategists would have learned how to capitalize on disasters from their successful experiment in New Orleans, where they quickly moved in after Katrina and expanded charter schools. Thus, a salivating GOP would seize this moment to remind all Americans affected by Irene that climate change is real and urge them to demand immediate congressional action.
For maximum impact, rightwing pundits would cite the Pentagon’s finding that climate change constitutes “a grave national security threat” and the military’s plans to cope. On Fox News Sunday, Bill Kristol would advise that invoking the military in this debate “is strategically brilliant” because Democratic are vulnerable on anything to do with “our men and women in uniform.”
On the O’Reilly Factor, Ann Coulter would taunt President Obama for lacking “the kahunas” to take on corporate polluters. She would point to Obama’s cozy relationship with the likes of Exelon, and his silence on the controversial Keystone XL Pipeline. Sean Hannity would harangue the “liberal media” for ignoring the words “climate change” in their coverage of Hurricane Irene. Rightwing hothead and former UN ambassador John Bolton would announce on Fox his new campaign for a new international climate treaty. It would carry heavy sanctions—even military action—against countries that did not sign on.
Finally, GOP leaders would be all over the hypocrisy of Democratic governors for stoking hatred of government even as they, in this crisis moment, expect emergency relief from the federal government. On the campaign trail and in presidential debates, GOP candidates would use Irene to highlight the indispensable role of government not just in public safety, but in healthcare access, infrastructure investment, helping foreclosure victims and reining in predatory banks, and alleviating poverty—that silent but ongoing emergency for millions of women, men and children. They would forcefully explain to voters that paying taxes is not a subversive notion, but an act of patriotism.
(Are you listening, Democrats?)
Fortunately, James Thindwa lives very much in the real world, where he is a Chicago-based labor and community activist. He also writes for In These Times and serves on its board of directors.
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Perhaps it’s too subtle for some. End of Days?

I don’t think most of the Texans agree with the “End of Days” schtick. They’ve been roughed up pretty thoroughly by drought already, enough to get their dander up. A real Texan is one tough hombre. A guy calling himself a preacher, sipping from his coffee mug and shouting into a camera on You Tube isn’t enough to make them give up hope, quit struggling, drop to their knees and pray.


Texas Lake Turns Blood-Red – Texas – Fox Nation http://bit.ly/o68IlO


That doesn’t seem to extend to Indiana however.


And now for the not so ‘subtle’ part.


The Deluge - Image via Wikipedia


There once was an old man who had great faith
. He lived in a flood-plain
. One day after a particularly hard rain, a Ranger pulls up in front of the house in a 4×4. The Ranger tells the old man that a great flood is coming, that he needs to evacuate. The old man insists on staying saying, “I have faith! God will save me from the flood!” The Ranger argues, but to no avail, and finally leaves to save more sensible people.

 

Rescue work, Dayton (LOC)

Image by The Library of Congress via Flickr

The next day, the floodwaters have covered the old man’s yard, and are lapping at his porch. The same Ranger pulls up in a john-boat and begs the old man once more to evacuate. The old man remains firm, saying, “I have faith! God will save me from the flood!” The Ranger argues to no avail, and finally leaves.

Helicopter Rescue

Helicopter Rescue - Image by SixFourG via Flickr

The next day, the floodwaters have covered the 1st and 2nd stories, and a helicopter flies in to hover over the old man perched upon the roof. The Ranger yells to the old man, “Climb up! We need to get you out of here!” Once again, the old man replies, “I have faith! God will save me from the flood!” As they argue, a wave sweeps the old man off the roof and he drowns. The old man arrives at the gates of Heaven, and is greeted by the Angel Gabriel. The old man says, “I want to speak with God.” Gabriel smiles and says that God wants to talk to him, too. The old man is ushered into the presence of God, and says, “Lord, I don’t understand! I had faith that you would save me! What happened?”

God looks at him, sighs, and says, “I sent you a 4×4, a boat, and a helicopter, what more did you want???”


Could it be that the messages for the last 30 years were sent to save us? 

This story is usually paired with something crisp like, “The Lord helps those who help themselves.” Life isn’t about passively standing around, waiting for the big guy in the sky to take care of you. You’ve got to participate.

 

“I sent you a scientist, a group of scientists, and an international coalition of scientists to tell you how to avoid this, what more did you want???”

Dr. Rajendra Kumar Pachauri Chair, IPCC

Image by UNclimatechange via Flickr

Related articles

Organizing? ROFL!

This is one of those posts that gets put up in a hurry.  Because of an irritated response. Because it seems to make sense at the time, but after looking at it you realize that it’s in the wrong place, on the wrong blog, and doesn’t completely make sense.

So here I am, a day later trying to fix it.

So….

In 2008 I found myself an Obama supporter.  I didn’t start out that way, but that’s where I landed. Gave money to the campaign. Did some volunteer work.

Hope defeats Fear

Image by Todd Barnard via Flickr

I managed to hang on to that attitude and feeling for close to 2 years. Even weathered the underhanded behind closed doors tax deal from the last time around.  But no longer.

Citizens registered as an Independent, Democra...

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This last set of ‘negotiations’ left me with the clear picture that not only is the Democratic side of Congress completely ineffective, but the President has rendered himself ineffective as well. A Democratically controlled Senate, a Democratic President, Republicans with a bare majority in the House, and the Democrats are on the run. Absolutely tragic.

Change is not easy. It’s one of the most difficult tasks that anyone can set out to do. But that was the job that this President defined for himself. And he’s accomplished some of it.

Mean surface temperature change for the period...

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However, the change that I worry about, the change that involves the keeping a reasonable future for my children, my grandchildren, and their yet to be born children, that change was very nearly the first item to fall off the Presidential agenda. Global weirding, climate disruption, climate change, global warming, whatever you call it was sacrificed to permit a badly mangled, unenforceable national healthcare mandate to limp out of the legislative process.

Global annual fossil fuel carbon dioxide emiss...

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What was the calculation? Was it easier to fight the insurance industry than the fossil fuel industry? Was a short-term immediate potential gain more important than acting on a problem that will take down the whole planet? Were the chances of being reelected part of the decision? Whatever it was, the gamble seems to have been to get a short-term political gain that might kick in sometime in the next few years by sacrificing the future of our culture.

We won’t be wiped out, unless we pass one of those tipping points we suspect exist. No, somewhere along the way we might manage to stop pouring gigatonnes of heat trapping gases into our air, we could survive as a species. With 7 billion of us on the planet, chances are reasonable that Homo sapiens will struggle through for another 300 or 400 years while the planet tries to regain its equilibrium.

So the President, who decided to become the cruise director on the Titanic rather than avoid the iceberg, has now joined the band rather than trying to save any more of the passengers.

On Tuesday, I got this email from the organizers of the Obama 2012 campaign. In multiple formats I sent the following response back to various elements of the organizer’s teams.

Sorry, no, I wasn’t planning on voting Republican next year… I thought I’d wait to see if there will be a Democrat in the running, since President Obama seems to be prepping for a run on the GOP ticket.

——– Original Message ——–
Subject: Re: Tomorrow:  house meeting
Date: Tue, 02 Aug 2011 18:24:38 -0600
From: tweetingdonal at Gmail <tweetingdonal@gmail.com>
To: info@barackobama.com

On 8/2/2011 5:34 PM, Jeremy Bird, BarackObama.com wrote:

2012
Friend –Tomorrow — Wednesday, August 3rd — volunteers will gather at campaign house meetings across the country to continue laying the groundwork for the 2012 campaign.

This kind of organizing work matters more than ever. Now that President Obama has reached a compromise with congressional leaders to meet our financial obligations and reduce our debt, it’s up to us to get the word out about how important this agreement is and why it’s crucial to have a leader like President Obama in office.

Tomorrow, volunteers will talk about how to build this campaign at the local level —

Here are the details:

What: House meeting

Where:

When: Wednesday, August 3rd
5:00 pm

RSVP now

At this week’s house meetings, we’ll discuss the best way to keep bringing new folks into the political process in our own communities and neighborhoods. It’s important that folks hear about the President’s accomplishments from their own friends and neighbors — from forging this new bipartisan debt compromise to reforming Wall Street, repealing “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” and passing the historic Affordable Care Act.

Wednesday also happens to be the day before the President’s 50th birthday — and our work to build this campaign through this kind of solid grassroots organizing is the sort of gift he’ll appreciate most.

Will you plan on setting aside a small part of your day on Wednesday for a house meeting? RSVP now to attend in:

http://my.barackobama.com/Birthday-House-Meetings

Thanks,

Jeremy

Jeremy Bird
National Field Director
Obama for America

 

Paid for by Obama for America

Texas farmers to get disaster relief | Lubbock Online | Lubbock Avalanche-Journal

AVALANCHE-JOURNAL

The Lubbock area’s farmers realized conditions had reached critical proportions before Tuesday’s declaration by Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack naming all of Texas as eligible to apply for Farm Service Agency assistance.

Mike Swain, who farms south of Brownfield and also is a Terry County commissioner, said he has logged 35/100ths of an inch of rain since Oct. 21.

“I will be real honest, I don’t need a loan – I need rain,” Swain said.

Vilsack’s disaster designation for 213 counties, along with their contiguous counties, means farm operators in all 254 counties may turn to the FSA because of the conditions of “drought, excessive heat, high winds and wildfires.”

The designation makes emergency loan assistance available for eight months.

“FSA will consider each emergency loan application on its own merits, taking into account the extent of production losses, security available, and repayment ability,” the announcement states.

Farmers also may file applications in 2012 for 2011 crop losses under the Supplemental Revenue Assistance Payments Program.

Tyson Knight, who farms in Lubbock and Hale counties, said, “I’ve never seen it as dry as this year has been. We’ve had some dry years, but we’ve always had some wintertime moisture.”

About 60 percent of his farming operation is on irrigated land, with the other 40 percent dryland.

Knight predicts the irrigated crops will make money this year, but the dryland, where cotton never came up, will zero out.

Steve Verett, executive vice president of Plains Cotton Growers, said, “It is good that the USDA has recognized the serious nature of the drought in Texas. Agriculture needs to have available all programs that could be helpful in trying to make it through these unprecedented conditions.”

According to U.S. Rep. Randy Neugebauer of Lubbock, the USDA has taken the correct action to help farmers and ranchers mitigate damage caused by wildfires and drought.

“I hope that FEMA will quickly follow suit and declare a major disaster declaration for affected Texas counties,” he said.

Cattle farmers hurt, too.

“A lot of people have lost their livestock, their homes, their fencing. Fencing costs anywhere from $5,000 to $10,000 a mile, depending on how you do it,” said Swain.

“I have neighbors down here who say if it doesn’t rain by the Fourth of July, they’re going to have to sell their cow herd. And they’ve been years building it up.

“Beef may become a real luxury, instead of ‘Hey, what’s for dinner?’ ”

Continue reading

Lord Monckton: Bring out your Dead! « Climate Denial Crock of the Week

As far as I can tell, a “Climate Denier” is a person who is certain that global climate disruption (climate change, global warming, etc) is not happening. Climate Denial seems to have become an ideology, impervious to additional information or logical discussion.

For many years now Peter Sinclair and his Greenman Studio LLC have been providing clear, well researched counters to the sometimes outrageous statements made by these climate deniers, along with those who foster climate denial as a way to continue doing “business as usual”.

Lord Monckton in Washington, D.C.

Image via Wikipedia

In this video, Peter has again focused on a recurring subject, once a darling of the climate denial organizations, Lord Christopher Monckton, 3rd Viscount Monckton of Brenchley. Lord Monckton is a hereditary peer, meaning that he comes by his titles mostly by way of birth. He often claims to be a member of the House of Lords, a situation that does not obtain, and was formally ended by Parliament in 1999. Lord Monckton likes to style himself an honorary member of the House of Lords, but the House of Lords does not agree are stepping up their efforts to stop Monckton’s false claims, saying “he is not and never has been a member and that there is no such thing as a non-voting or honorary member.”

Monckton is no stranger to controversy. In 1987 he proposed that AIDS victims be effectively placed in internment camps. In an article in The American Spectator he stated that, “there is only one way to stop AIDS. That is to screen the entire population regularly and to quarantine all carriers of the disease for life.Every member of the population should be blood-tested every month … all those found to be infected with the virus, even if only as carriers, should be isolated compulsorily, immediately, and permanently.” This would involve isolating between 1.5 and 3 million people in the United States (“not altogether impossible”) and another 30,000 people in the UK (“not insuperably difficult”). (Emphasis mine.) In other venues this man styles himself a conservative and what we would now call a Libertarian. *sigh*

The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn was a music...

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For those who are like me, of a slightly older generation, or even better, have grown up in Missouri along the Mississippi River just below Hannibal, Lord Monckton’s antics seem very familiar. For any of you who remember Mark Twain‘s Adventures of Huckleberry Finn you may recall the characters The Duke and the King. Unfortunately the 3rd Viscount Monckton of Brenchley does not seem to have enjoyed a ride out of town on a rail, or perhaps tarring and feathering. It seems overdue to me.

It may be that his Lordship is running out of juice. Over the course of the last two years Lord Monckton has begun publicly referring to anyone who disagrees with his climate denial positions as being “Nazis” or “Hitler Youth”. Also, he has begun promoting his cure for all sorts of diseases, from including Graves’ Disease, multiple sclerosis, influenza, and herpes simplex. Somewhat ironically his PR people are also claiming that the therapy works on AIDS as well. I visualize a medicine show from a wagon in Lord Monckton’s future.

Please take a peek at Peter’s video, where not only do we get to see the Lord’s tour of Australia begin, but also get to hear a UK journalist experience “ambush” interviewing with “gotcha” questions by a member of the UK Royal Science Society.

June 27, 2011

I took a break from my new solutions video, which will be out soon. I just had to say something in regard to His Immaculate and Beneficent Highness Lord Christopher Monckton’s current tour of Australia.   We’re already hearing lots of exciting news, and I’ll cover it here as it happens.

For now, it turns out that The August and Exalted Lord Monckton ‘s scientific expertise is not limited to being the world’s foremost climate expert — he is also a medical practitioner of the highest caliber.

Bring out your Dead!!

Taiji Dolphin Season Opens | Mother Jones

Speaking of history, activists have been so (understandably) blindsided by the cruelty and atrociousness of dolphin and whale slaughter that they’ve forgotten it was only after WWII that Japanese consumption of whale and dolphin meat increased. Gen. Douglas MacArthur was the one who helped Japan set up whaling fleets so Japan could feed people who were facing starvation during the American occupation.

Don’t you love it when good intentions turn out to be horrible ideas?