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Topics - Paddy

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Walking the walk / Clicktivism
« on: April 27, 2017, 11:11:54 AM »
A relatively small way we can walk the walk would seem to be through our internet use.  I currently do the following three things in this way, from most to least productive:

- Using as my search engine, so that when I search for stuff, it ends up in trees being planted.
- Signing online petitions, which I doubt makes any real difference at all.
- Internet arguments / putting the right information out there (on forums, news comments etc.), which I fear is a often a complete waste of time, but can't quite give up on. (Although I hasten to add that those producing good quality material on the blogosphere are certainly not wasting their time)

Do people here take part in any other things in this line?

The rest / UK Snap General Election Poll
« on: April 19, 2017, 07:19:47 AM »
Fellow UK voters: Which way do you plan to vote on June 8th? Personally, for a number of factors including their widespread adoption of climate change denial, I'm an "Anyone But the Tories" voter, likely to prop up my solid Lib Den candidate in West Ealing. It would be good to hear a range of views though.

Policy and solutions / Water management
« on: April 03, 2017, 12:29:15 PM »
I've just read an article suggesting better management of water, green space and wetlands as a means of ameliorating Climate change:

How much mileage do people here think there might be in this approach?

Policy and solutions / Lists of current elected denialist politicians
« on: February 28, 2017, 02:36:55 PM »
I was thinking we could do with lists of elected politicians that we particularly need to challenge on climate change. After a little research, here's a shortlist of denialist UK MPs, sorted by party:

Peter Lilley (Con)
John Hayes (Con)
Owen Patterson (Con)
John Redwood (Con)
David Davis (Con)
Christopher Chope (Con)
Andrew Tyrie (Con)
Nigel Evans (Con)
Sammy Wilson (DUP)
Graham Stringer (Lab)
Douglas Carswell (UKIP)

If anyone has any modifications to suggest to this list, and/or any lists from other countries to suggest, they'd be very welcome :-)

Arctic sea ice / NSIDC Arctic sea ice news
« on: February 08, 2017, 05:52:49 PM »
February edition is out:

I'm planning to start a monthly update on this, if that would be useful - please feed back on whether it would.

Key figures in the first paragraph:

"Arctic sea ice extent for January 2017 averaged 13.38 million square kilometers (5.17 million square miles), the lowest January extent in the 38-year satellite record. This is 260,000 square kilometers (100,000 square miles) below January 2016, the previous lowest January extent, and 1.26 million square kilometers (487,000 square miles) below the January 1981 to 2010 long-term average."

Developers Corner / Overall summary of ice on earth
« on: January 09, 2017, 06:53:47 AM »
If you were to do an overall summary of the trends in ice mass or volume on earth broken down into the following categories, how would you go about it?

Antarctic Ice sheet mass
Greenland ice sheet mass
Arctic sea ice mass
Antarctic sea ice mass
Glacier ice mass worldwide
Permafrost ice mass worldwide

(Listed in approximate order of size)

I was thinking of using annual averages, and doing a simple comparison of the long term average to the past five year average to the most recent year where these figures exist (no idea if they do at all for permafrost).

Antarctica / Poll for 2017 IJIS daily minimum Antarctic sea ice extent
« on: January 02, 2017, 05:13:43 PM »
Poll for the daily minimum as requested. I went for narrow 250000 square km) bands; any strong preference for future polls between these and 500000 square km bands? Voting ends in the middle of January, changing your vote is possible up to that point, and I'd be very grateful if someone could post a list of recent prior minimums.

EDIT: added in one more band at the top, apologies if your vote was reset.

Arctic sea ice / 2017 IJIS extent maximum prediction
« on: January 02, 2017, 02:11:06 PM »
As suggested. Any objections to the format?
(Specified Jan to May because of the remote possibility of a December peak).

The rest / The Trump Presidency (was "Presidential Poll")
« on: September 27, 2016, 08:11:49 AM »
Forum members from the US: who are you going to vote for?

EDIT: The poll allows you to change your mind; I intend to close it on election day.

EDIT 2: Thread renamed due to thread drift and electoral outcomes.

Walking the walk / Pat yourself on the back
« on: September 08, 2016, 09:03:49 AM »
A thread to post about steps you've recently taken in the direction of sustainability.

For me, just a tiny step to report recently: getting and using a travel mug so I'm no longer going through endless disposable cups to fuel my caffeine habit.

Walking the walk / Pets
« on: August 22, 2016, 01:54:37 PM »
With regards to pet-keeping, what can we do to reduce the climate impact?

The big thing, to me, would be to rescue rather than incentivise the breeding of new pets where possible. With a side mention of also feeding them as sustainably as possible, while keeping them well-nourished (cats need meat/fish, for example), and neutering where appropriate. Anything else?

Walking the walk / Top climate-friendly actions
« on: August 22, 2016, 01:49:34 PM »
If you could put together a top X list of ways to walk the walk, as a general call to arms / summary of good ideas, what would they be?  Here's mine (it worked out as Top 6, but the number is not fixed)

1) Reduce meat and dairy consumption.
2) Plan to have fewer children later
3) Reduce personal fossil fuel consumption, in particular, cycling and walking when you can
4) Reduce what you consume otherwise, reusing, recycling, etc. where possible
5) Source whatever you consume more sustainably
6) Vote, campaign, and generally speak up more for the policy changes that we need

Arctic sea ice / The Central Arctic Basin
« on: July 17, 2016, 05:39:19 PM »
So I've been following the regional figures (mainly on Neven's own regional graphs page for a while, and it looks like the CAB (Central Arctic Basin) may be melting / opening a little earlier than usual. Do we think this is a genuine effect, if so, what do we think is driving it, and do we think it's going to matter later in the season where the amount of ice left there would be the main statistic making up the total area and extent?

Greenland and Arctic Circle / Northern hemisphere snow cover
« on: June 02, 2016, 05:03:26 AM »
Which sources are best used to track northern hemisphere snow cover?

Policy and solutions / Bicycles
« on: August 12, 2015, 12:58:51 PM »
So, bicycle production worldwide has climbed rapidly over the last four decades, from a little over 20 million in 1970 to 130 million in 2007.

Not sure how usage compares, but this seems like a good thing (TM) in climate and health terms.  On the other hand, however, cycle use has dropped sharply in some key areas, particularly China.

Science / Predicted reduction in solar activity
« on: July 12, 2015, 11:25:15 PM »
So apparently there's been a prediction of an upcoming reduction in solar activity which has just been presented at a UK National Astronomy Meeting.  They're basically saying that their model predicts less activity over the next two solar cycles, and that there may be a "mini-ice age" between 2030 and 2040 due to a 60% drop in solar activity.  Can't seem to find any hard data on this anywhere though.

EDIT: Here's the original press release that everything I've seen in the papers seems to draw from.

The rest / Other slow races to watch
« on: July 08, 2015, 02:25:49 AM »
Polar ice tracking has been described as akin to watching a very slow race.  If the finishing line is an ice-free Arctic, then it's likely to be out there somewhere, although we don't know how many years it will take to reach it.

Are there any other slow races that you like to watch?  I'm guessing that global temperatures, CO2 levels etc. will be commonplace here, but what else (especially things unrelated to the ice)?  For me, it's disease control programmes in general, and particularly the eradication programmes vs polio and guinea worm (even though neither is now remotely important as a threat to global health since they've been pushed back so far, it'll be good to see the day when they're gone entirely).  Also, the millennium development goals, and human population trends, to an extent.

Medvedev's planning to increase the capacity of the Northern Sea Route by 20 times over the next 15 years, from the current 4 million tons to 80 million tons, alongside planning other developments in the region.  The heat released from, turbulence caused by, and direct mechanical damage to ice from cargo ships passing through in this way are doubtless all tiny things compared to the major inputs for sea ice melting, but this is probably not good news for arctic sea ice, all the same.

How does the amount that Greenland melts affect arctic sea ice, and vice versa?  I can imagine lots of putative positive and negative feedbacks, particularly the following four:
- loss of albedo due to melt on land -> increased warmth -> increased melt on land and at sea
- loss of albedo due to melt at sea -> increased warmth -> increased melt at sea and on land
- a flow of cold fresh water from Greenland slowing the loss of arctic sea ice
- altered rates of iceberg calving also affecting arctic sea ice

What do the numbers say, though?

Based on the NSIDC's Charctic graph so far, I reckon this is the lowest May average extent we've seen.  (Not quite the lowest area, though).

EDIT: The question is, though, what does this mean, if anything, for the rest of the melting season?

Science / Relative importance of ice based indicators
« on: May 20, 2015, 04:21:56 PM »
I'm basically an only moderately well-informed amateur on this topic.  I'm aware of five main things to track in terms of the world's ICE:

Arctic sea ice, trackable by area, extent, or mass (trending downwards)
Antarctic sea ice, trackable by area, extent, or mass (trending upwards)
Greenland ice sheet, trackable by mass (trending downwards)
Antarctic ice sheet, trackable by mass (trending downwards)
Glaciers worldwide, trackable by mass (trending downwards)

How would people rank these in terms of importance?  I'd be tempted to put the AIS first as the single greatest amount of ice, followed by the Greenland ice sheet, arctic sea ice, antarctic sea ice, and finally glaciers worldwide, but I'm sure there are other interpretations.  Also, am I missing anything important?  (Permafrost, maybe?)

Antarctica / Antarctic land ice mass
« on: May 20, 2015, 02:37:11 PM »
Is there any continuous, up to date tracking of the land ice mass in Antarctica, equivalent to the GRACE data on Greenland which NOAA reports on annually?  The latest estimates which I've been able to google are a few years old.

Apologies for my ignorance, btw!

Has anyone calculated what scale of positive feedback may be expected from increasing human activities within the arctic circle as a result of the ice melt leading to further ice melt?  I can see five main ways in which human activity seems set to increase:

1) Increased freight shipping, especially via the Northern sea route
(Numbers are up from 4 ships in 2010 to 46 vessels in 2012, shipping 1.26 million tonnes, to a predicted 20 million tonnes shipped in 2020)
2) Increasingly northerly fishing
3) Exploratory drilling
4) Infrastructural upgrades, mainly to support 1-3, e.g. harbour expansion and floating nuclear power plants
5) Science and tourist traffic

I'm particularly wondering if the extent to which this has all increased already might be part of why the melt went on longer in 2012 than prior years, and hence if we might expect a repeat of the long melt this year as shipping etc. looks set to rise further.  What I haven't found is any numbers on the likely impacts of such changes, to tell me whether I'm barking up the wrong tree or not.  Can anyone help me out on this?

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