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Messages - Bruce Steele

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Policy and solutions / Re: Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS)
« on: May 26, 2017, 08:02:50 PM »
Geoengineering impact of open ocean dissolution of olivine on atmospheric CO2 surface ocean pH and marine biology. Koehler et al 2013

"Ongoing global warming induced by anthropogenic emissions has opened the debate as to whether geoengineering is a 'quick fix' option. Here we analyse the intended and unintended effects of one specific geoengineering approach, which is enhanced weathering via the open ocean dissolution of the silicate-containing mineral olivine. This approach would not only reduce atmospheric CO2 and oppose surface ocean acidification, but would also impact on marine biology. If dissolved in the surface ocean, olivine sequesters 0.28 g carbon per g of olivine dissolved, similar to land-based enhanced weathering. Silicic acid input, a byproduct of the olivine dissolution, alters marine biology because silicate is in certain areas the limiting nutrient for diatoms. As a consequence, our model predicts a shift in phytoplankton species composition towards diatoms, altering the biological carbon pumps. Enhanced olivine dissolution, both on land and in the ocean, therefore needs to be considered as ocean fertilization. From dissolution kinetics we calculate that only olivine particles with a grain size of the order of 1 μm sink slowly enough to enable a nearly complete dissolution. The energy consumption for grinding to this small size might reduce the carbon sequestration efficiency by ~30%."

Tor, I don't think anyone has modeled the potential positive feedback of less glaciers- less alkalinity delivered to the ocean, therefor impaired carbon sinks. Even with a substantial population of autonomous solar powered rock crushers we might only make up for a part of the power to crush rock currently preformed by glaciers. The advantage of engineered autonomous robots would be they could be placed in ideal terrains to maximize cation production and transport.

Science / Re: Carbon Cycle
« on: May 26, 2017, 05:42:39 PM »
For the study, published in the journal Scientific Reports, scientists raised foraminifera -- single-celled organisms about the size of a grain of sand -- at the UC Davis Bodega Marine Laboratory under future, high CO2 conditions.

These tiny organisms, commonly called "forams," are ubiquitous in marine environments and play a key role in food webs and the ocean carbon cycle.

Stressed Under Future Conditions

After exposing them to a range of acidity levels, UC Davis scientists found that under high CO2, or more acidic, conditions, the foraminifera had trouble building their shells and making spines, an important feature of their shells.

They also showed signs of physiological stress, reducing their metabolism and slowing their respiration to undetectable levels.

This is the first study of its kind to show the combined impact of shell building, spine repair, and physiological stress in foraminifera under high CO2 conditions. The study suggests that stressed and impaired foraminifera could indicate a larger scale disruption of carbon cycling in the ocean.

Off Balance

As a marine calcifier, foraminifera use calcium carbonate to build their shells, a process that plays an integral part in balancing the carbon cycle.

Normally, healthy foraminifera calcify their shells and sink to the ocean floor after they die, taking the calcite with them. This moves alkalinity, which helps neutralize acidity, to the seafloor.

When foraminifera calcify less, their ability to neutralize acidity also lessens, making the deep ocean more acidic.

But what happens in the deep ocean doesn't stay in the deep ocean.

Impacts for Thousands of Years

"It's not out-of-sight, out-of-mind," said lead author Catherine Davis, a Ph.D. student at UC Davis during the study and currently a postdoctoral associate at the University of South Carolina. "That acidified water from the deep will rise again. If we do something that acidifies the deep ocean, that affects atmospheric and ocean carbon dioxide concentrations on time scales of thousands of years."

Davis said the geologic record shows that such imbalances have occurred in the world's oceans before, but only during times of major change.

"This points to one of the longer time-scale effects of anthropogenic climate change that we don't understand yet," Davis said.

Upwelling Brings 'Future' to Surface

One way acidified water returns to the surface is through upwelling, when strong winds periodically push nutrient-rich water from the deep ocean up to the surface. Upwelling supports some of the planet's most productive fisheries and ecosystems. But additional anthropogenic, or human-caused, CO2 in the system is expected to impact fisheries and coastal ecosystems.

UC Davis' Bodega Marine Laboratory in Northern California is near one of the world's most intense coastal upwelling areas. At times, it experiences conditions most of the ocean isn't expected to experience for decades or hundreds of years.

"Seasonal upwelling means that we have an opportunity to study organisms in high CO2, acidic waters today -- a window into how the ocean may look more often in the future," said co-author Tessa Hill, an associate professor in earth and planetary sciences at UC Davis. "We might have expected that a species of foraminifera well-adapted to Northern California wouldn't respond negatively to high CO2 conditions, but that expectation was wrong. This study provides insight into how an important marine calcifier may respond to future conditions, and send ripple effects through food webs and carbon cycling."

Policy and solutions / Re: Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS)
« on: May 26, 2017, 05:11:38 PM »
rboyd, I found this review of potential policy options re. adaptation and modification for OA effects worldwide.

It covers effects of riverine contributions of alkalinity both positively , in the Mississippi , and negatively in Maine. Although I am heavily involved with OA and this report even mentions a group I helped form and name C-CAN , California Current Acidification Network. Several other similar CAN groups have also since formed in other US regions. Rivers naturally contribute alkalinity to oceans in varying concentrations depending upon the mineral makeup of the landmass they flow through . Agriculture can even increase amounts of alkalinity delivered although the means of this contribution is soil loss and generally viewed as detrimental. I do not believe most OA research or policy has yet reached the point where there is a nexus between agriculture and large ocean processes but I believe what happens on land is far more important to ocean chemistry than where current common knowledge stands.
 As the earth warms so too will rainfall increase and as a consequence increase alkalinity inputs from land, at least in areas where river systems flow through appropriate mineral landscapes. There needs to be better mapping of those potential river systems that may offer some geoengineering potential as ocean pH modifiers. The earth will over the next hundred thousand years do all this naturally of course but we should put some effort into speeding up this natural process. I have a few ideas.
 Mineral supplements might be mined and added to agricultural lands that could increase alkalinity and at the same time increase soil health. Alkaline Green sand as and example .
 Mineral supplements could be added to animal feeds that accomplish the same thing, like feeding diatomaceous earth.
 Planting the upper reaches of certain steep watersheds with plants that can help break down mineral rocks or even bioengineered plants designed for that purpose might be another potential.
 Or for a sci-fi option invent small autonomous robots that are solar powered rock crushers and turn them loose in appropriate mountain terrains.
 The point of all this is to start thinking whole earth systems  and how we might promote the natural system that will eventually fix the CO2 problem we have created by speeding up those processes .
Start thinking about which river systems can help us, what farming techniques can help us, what plant species can help us and what sci-fi type options we might invent.
 So far we are only creating marine reserves and starting to enhance estuaries to help add resilience but we haven't gotten around to how we can modify terrestrial processes that can either help or hinder atmospheric CO2 drawdowns and oceanic pH outcomes. 

Policy and solutions / Re: Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS)
« on: May 26, 2017, 05:12:01 AM »
rboyd, I agree with much of what you have contributed over the last few months but I would like to believe accelerated weathering of serpentines , olivines and carbonates like limestone might hold some potential to balance ocean acidification and help drawdown atmospheric CO2 if added to riverine systems. We have the ability to monitor pH balances and alkalinity so riverine flows didn't damage aquatic life and potentially we could even improve aquatic conditions in acidified river systems.
 I don't have peer reviewed work to back up these claims but as society continues it's fossil fuel frenzy I think we will attempt atmospheric sulfur and geoengineering schemes to mitigate the CO2 effects we all know are coming. Without some  corrallary attempts to modify increasing acidification in the oceans we will merely modify the heating effects of CO2 without changing the acidification that is it's evil twin.
 How this can be accomplished without undue negative effects on terrestrial systems or extra fossil fuel use is beyond my pay grade but I still would like to leave open the conversation of potential benefits of increased weathering schemes with whole system analysis of costs, both economic and environmental.

Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2017 melting season
« on: May 22, 2017, 05:10:35 PM »
Barrow web cam is showing sea ice melt the last couple of days. Puddles in town and melt on the lake right side of picture frame.

Walking the walk / Re: Top climate-friendly actions
« on: May 22, 2017, 08:14:17 AM »
I am always caught up by regulations as a deterrent to resonable climate friendly choices. I got pigs because I hated composting slightly blemished fruits and vegetables. I figured feeding pigs was a more appropriate use for vegetables and I got my farm insurance policy cancelled as a consequence. So I had to choose between vegetables and pigs to get a new policy.
 My pigs are best for Charcuterie but health and safety regulations for Charcuterie result in restaurants either cheating or forgoing curing meats. The temperatures required by USDA isn't ideal for the best results either. I cure  at home but I can't sell what I produce. Salt is far more climate friendly than CFC's but freezers and cold rooms are de rigor .
 I am planting oak trees in a silvopasture plan because planting fruit trees results in fruit I can't sell. I have figured out how to make biodiesel but collecting restaurant grease requires permits and special equipment , or it did when I was using kitchen grease. I am now using lard as a feedstock and plan on using the bio produced in my farm equipment . I don't plan on looking too deeply into legalities.
 I have been processing acorns which also gets into legal issues other than for personal use. Restaurants pay about $50 for two pounds of acorn flour but I would need a commercial kitchen to make product for sale. Going through the legal channels for acorn production may be worth the trouble because there is only one commercial supplier in the U.S.
 So I live my life in two channels that are often in conflict. Those things I believe offer an alternative to energy demands of government regulations and those insured , taxed and inspected programs of a commercial operation. One will lead IMO to a planetary disaster and the other to the only future that people might live in harmony with our Planet.
 It is either or, and attempting both leads to a lot of inter conflict.

Walking the walk / Re: Top climate-friendly actions
« on: May 22, 2017, 12:46:48 AM »
Wili, I woundn't be here at all if it weren't for spellcheck but in spite of my challenges with English ( my one language ) I still surprise myself with some well written posts. I am not a teacher.
 I can't quite figure if you are trying to pick a fight but you should note that silvoculture involves raising animals and planting trees. This list is inclusive and not exclusive , you can't get to drawdown without including every step. I hope you realize we are struggling together here. If it makes you happier I have given up on beef . I would like to eat it , I like how it tastes ,but I think the carbon costs are too high.
 I think the important message in " Drawdown " is the acknowledgement that technological solutions will not be adequate to achieve a peak and decline in CO2. No silver bullets. Six of the ten solutions are not technological.
 I'm going to let the pooh - poohing pass although I think it is intended as a slight.

ps, you changed your post so I am going to go back and review article to try and find where you took offense.
Pig farmer - treeplanter

Walking the walk / Re: Top climate-friendly actions
« on: May 21, 2017, 09:44:43 PM »
I saw this review of a book called "Drawdown" by Paul Hawkin over at Scribbler.

It has a list of peer reviewed studies that are affordable and scaleable and ranks those solutions on how they contribute to drawdown , that point where CO2 begins to drop in the atmosphere.
1) Refridgerate Management
2) onshore wind turbines
3) reduced food waste
4) plant rich diet
5) tropical forests
6) educating girls
7) family planning
8) solar farms
9) silvopasture
10) rooftop solar

So yes reducing meat consumption is one of the top four right after reducing food waste but maybe
Terry should start a thread on how "Refridgerate management " and the increase in air-conditioners is a problem and the top climate friendly technological fix that can affordably change our current trajectory.

Hawkins is planning a new book on the same subject. A few suggestions from the peanut gallery would be a switch to low methane rice culture and diet supplements to reduce methane in cattle and
 I have personally adopted some of the top ten list and I think others on the list are things I can incorporate as a farmer. It is interesting to me that farmers , ranchers and foresters are all occupations that can help society adapt to our collective future. It is also painfully apparent that we are underrepresented in this forum and probably underrepresented in solutions dialogs that should more effectively target this segment of the worlds population.
 Here is a blog site that talks about silvoculture is a "boots on the ground" kind of way. The law is making climate solution impossible for farmers. So maybe some rethinking the food safety issues with a consideration for climate solutions should be a higher motivation for government planners?  It is so easy to put a boot on someone else's neck and feel good about it when priorities are confused . So little time to get this right.


Science / Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« on: May 16, 2017, 02:58:30 PM »
Sigmetnow, Chlorpyrifos is damn nasty stuff. It has rendered many watersheds in California sterile for insect life. This of course limits the availability of food for fish or other creatures further up the food chain. Dursban, Lorsban( Chlorpyrifos) is regularly applied to Cole crops and used  on wine grapes and almonds. I had been waiting for the EPA to ban the crap but the Republicans have their own priorities. Again will not see issue covered in mainstream media and so consumers of vegetables have no idea they are consuming this stuff or take any responsibility for it's effects on the 
enviornment. "What you don't know won't hurt you"  idiom of content. Keep on shopping.

Click on Crops for an eye opening list

Permafrost / Re: Arctic Methane Release
« on: May 16, 2017, 02:32:10 PM »
Nicibiene, Thanks for the new pictures. My eye was drawn to the high concentration of CH4 over Svalbard in the 4/5/17  picture. That is where the heat is being pulled up from the Atlantic and there appears to be more CH4 this year. Would be nice to have water temperatures and CH4 somehow superimposed. Many of the other sources seem to be terrestrial (?) except that area you circled Southwest Greenland. I don't know what the source of that CH4 is.
 I don't know if you follow Apocalyse 4 real. He was a regular contributor here and over on the ASIB back  ~ three or four years ago. His blog has extra methane info in his archives. He still watches and he knows much more about methane issues than I.
 I am fascinated by carbon cycle processes . Riverine to atmosphere transfers of terrestrial (land sinks)
CO2 in the Amazon and Siberian riverine sources are two places to watch closely. How CO2 or methane production from these riverine sources are affected by heat , fires, permafrost melt and even drought are complications I don't think we have a handle on . Those portions of organic carbon that aren't converted via bacterial processes in the rivers will of course dump into the oceans. What part those terrestrial sources of organic matter are  responsible  for the methane in the Southwest Greenland area
I don't know but increased terrestrial meltwater may carry organics into the ocean very differently there compared to the Amazon?

Permafrost / Re: Arctic Methane Release
« on: May 15, 2017, 05:11:18 PM »
The upwelling of nutrients would increase biological production if surface waters were low in nitrogen , iron , phosphorus , etc.  Increased biological production would increase atmospheric CO2 drawdown
as long as the surface water pCO2 remained lower than atmospheric levels. This is called the biological carbon pump. Much of that carbon would be quickly recycled as higher trophic levels utilized the increased productivity. The bacteria reminerization of that portion of the organic production that settled would consume and release much of the carbon back into the water as CO2 or methane depending upon oxygen availability.
 I haven't read the whole paper but the increased biological production would be spread by currents and getting some measure of the fate of that carbon would require study of much larger areas than the rather localized site of the bubble column and upwelling .
 There are other processes that will also increase upwelling as the surface ice continues to decrease but the notion that this increased production will result in a vastly increased carbon sink is dubious IMO.
Does darkening of surface water really result in "less" heat absorption? Does upwelling and surface mixing potentially increase water column heating via insolation ?  Does the increased biological production contain higher or lower percentages of carbonate forming phytoplankton as the Arctic water continues to acidify? Other studies have shown decreases of calcium carbonate forming phytoplankton as acidity continues to increase. This will negatively affect ballasting and settlement of calcium carbonate into sediments. Calcium carbonate lasts much longer than labile organic material that settles to the bottom because like I said before bacteria can quickly remineralize organic material.
 nicibiene, Maybe those of us interested enough to read and learn and worry are all a bit alien. I do appreciate that there are fellows travelers that frequent this site and give me things to think about. I appreciate your company and I wish I had more friends that kept up with what is happening but mainstream news is completely devoid of information that might inform the masses and somehow they bury their heads when the subject does get a little too close to home. It's sad, it's lonely and I fear for how this all turns out.  It pains me that the way you describe German media, the selling of terror fears etc. mirrors so much the American experiance. It is very difficult to get away from Trump nausea, I know there is a famine in Africa but you'd never know about it cause it's Trump, Trump, terror and lately North Korea. The marketing of fear but the complete vacuum of information on how we are collectively precipitating a climate disaster. And more importantly what we as individuals might do to reduce our contributions .

Policy and solutions / Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« on: May 13, 2017, 07:18:26 PM »
Terry, I think the thousands of abandoned oil wells in LA are a valid concern. I know that here in the SB area there has been a long running effort to cap old leaking wells along the coast. Problem is they weren't ever well documented and mapped in the first place so they keep turning up even after the problem has been fixed. I think digging a tunnel at fifty feet anywhere in LA will surely require cutting off and resealing old abandoned wells. I don't know what you do with active wells. Just running a boring machine straight through them risks wreaking the boring machine or releasing methane at volume into your tunnel.
 The planned tunnel is below sea level and sea level rise by 2100 may result in flooding above the tunnel route. This will also be an issue for the 405.
 I do have a certain amount of faith these issues have already been in the planning process and Elon is
to be sure no fool.
 I am attaching an article with some oil well maps for LA.  These are the known ones, there are others.

Bob, I know everyone loves their big screens, instant communications, and laptops... Maybe some people love precision weponry but I'm not convinced this has resulted in less energy consumption.


Policy and solutions / Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« on: May 13, 2017, 05:35:02 PM »
SigM, I figured when you locate your tunnel at Westwood ( average household worth > 1 mill, average household income a little less than 200,000) with Brentwood , and Beverly Hills nearby it was obvious who your target demographic was. With LAX at the other end it becomes even more apparent Elon's tunnel is designed to service the lifestyles of the rich and famous with the associated energy consumptive habits included in that income demographic.
 I am not a believer in trickle down economics. I am also somehow not understanding the point of taking expensive cars to an airport parking garage when a very fast train could accomplish the same
purpose and might service better a more inclusive demographic? So maybe those airport shuttle buses will take up a fair share of the ridership on the tunnel if it is  actually  built but it is still just a way to make flying out of LA easier. I thought NOT flying was kinda like NOT eatting beef .
 Maybe I'm lost .
 Small is beautiful

Policy and solutions / Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« on: May 13, 2017, 06:16:15 AM »
I know the 405, I have been stuck in traffic there plenty of times in my life. I don't fly much anymore but I understand the anxiety of sitting dead stop in traffic wondering if I can make the last five miles before I miss my flight. That doesn't mean I can understand building a tube from Westwood to LAX for my new Tesla, Maserati , or Lamborghini so I don't have to deal with the inconvenience of living in LA. Living in LA should come with the problem of sharing the same small/ large area with millions of other people . Part of the reality , part of the turf, rich , poor , whatever color  or persuasion .
 So the tube for the über wealthy is for me offensive . For me the idea that everyone is inconvenienced , together , is way more appealing than the notion that enough money can get you to LAX so you can catch your privately chartered Lear jet to fly to your favorite island getaway , horse ridding lesson or " business meeting"  while avoiding the traffic the rest of us get stuck with.
 Screw Elon's vision for the -1%

Arctic Background / Re: Barneo 2017
« on: May 08, 2017, 05:10:10 AM »
Vigilius, Andreas pointed out ITP95 was put out at Barneo this season. If you look at the bottom of the WHOI ITP95 page linked below it says there was also an IMB put out there at the same time.

If Jim knows where to find the IMB deployed at Barneo and might post a link it would be appreciated.

Arctic sea ice / Re: What the Buoys are telling
« on: May 07, 2017, 08:39:06 PM »
Andreas, I was wondering if you have seen this site? It shows IMB type data for some of the buoys on the poster you linked. It's new to me and an additional 4 or 5 real time data sets should be useful once I get used to using the new platform.

This plot for buoy S45 deployed 2016 shows ice cover at about .81 meters and air temps approaching zero.

Andreas, maybe ITP 83 is what you're looking for ?
Thanks for pointing out ITP 95, should be something to watch and it looks like it is working well.

Interesting that the temp/ salinity profile for ITP 83 doesn't show the shoaling of the temperatures and salinity like buoys that approach the Fram on the eastern side like ITP 74 or ITP 93. The Eastern side of the Fram has Atlantic water moving north but the western side is Arctic water exiting, I assume.

Hyperion, I would say it is a bit of luck that the one remaining ITP buoy is located in the same region that your mixed layer chart shows deepening in the Beaufort. I will link a paper on the Arctic Mixed Layer that says it's depth stayed between 16 meters in the summer down to rarely over 40 meters in the winter for an aggregated set of ITP buoy runs. Current depth has reached 50 meters for the mixed layer on ITP 97.
 In reading through the paper below it says , at the end of sec.3.1 that the mixed layer was down to 50 meters back in 1975. So I don't know why it appears the mixed layer in central Beaufort has deepened but maybe looking back at 1975 would help .

Here is a completed mission for ITP 65 back in 2013 that traveled through the central Beaufort and shows the shallower mixed layer depths for that year.

BTW The 500 days on ITP97 doesn't mean it's been around that long. Still less than a year old deployed Oct. 2016, but that's good because if we're lucky it will continue to run for awhile more. Hopefully some new buoys get set out this year.

Arctic sea ice / Re: Fram Export
« on: May 06, 2017, 10:23:02 PM »
Hyperion, I cannot reconcile the large differences between the salinity charts you linked above and the data from the one remaining ITP Buoy still sending temperature / salinity contours.
At 5 meters the #97 ITP is showing 28.5 which is about what this buoy and every other buoy I have watched in the Beaufort has shown for surface waters for as long as the ITP program has sent us data...for this time of year.

If I am reading the model chart you linked correctly it is showing salinity in the Beaufort at 5 meters between 32 and 34.7  The 50 meter chart also seems far too saline.
This is again a case of choosing between a well tested and calibrated data base built with years of temperature and salinity readings from buoys and a model based upon I do not know what.

ps  This should be posted on another thread because Fram Export isn't where it belongs.

Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2017 melting season
« on: May 06, 2017, 09:35:56 PM »
Rick, Nome temperatures were as high as 46F today and temperatures at Red Dog Dock north of Kotzebue hit 40F. Red Dog Dock had water temperatures last year but it looks like the water temperatures are missing this year.

Policy and solutions / Re: Becoming Vegan.
« on: May 05, 2017, 07:30:11 AM »
Sidd, Thank you for being kind. I can't believe the conditions commercial hog operations put their pigs through. I have only seen big hog operations in the Midwest , metal barns , pigs never seeing the sun, never getting to dig , never building their wallows. Virtually all pig meat eaten here in the West originates in those horrible barns.
 I never understood the harsh mechanics of the market and how that plays out for the poor animals that never really get to live a life a sweet pig deserves. I don't think people understand , they don't understand that expecting to get the least expensive protein means terrible conditions for some poor animal. And although I give my pigs a little bit of what I can as far as good pasture pigs deserve I am
beginning  to question why I have always wanted to be a farmer .
 I wonder why I have looked so deeply into acidification , climate change, the melting Arctic. I am in too deep . In a weird way my piggies got it better than me.  For me there will be no refuge.
 I will get the book you suggested.

Policy and solutions / Re: Becoming Vegan.
« on: May 04, 2017, 07:10:21 AM »
Sidd, If you've ever spent much time around pigs it becomes very obvious they are very intelligent, social and affectionate. Killing them is hard on the soul. I am not the first person to feel revolted at what I am, what I do. Yes they can also carry zoonotic diseases but I think it is something deeper , a place where we really question who we are. A place where we meet our dark past in the very real present.
 Maybe this is just too hard and difficult to rationalize but I am going to give it a try. We are killing our planet . We are taking thousands or millions of species to the brink of extinction. The reason isn't our lack of compassion ,it is the ease with which we can compartmentalize our part in this destruction. If we are going to get serious about eliminating our individual contribution to the primary cause ,fossil fuel emissions, we need to think long and hard about what zero emissions looks like. I fight every day with my inter doubts but I haven't found a better way to get to zero than what I am doing. Efficiency or how much a pig eats bothers me far less than putting more fuel in the fuel tank ( unless it's biodiesel )
Efficientcy seems more an arguement about how many humans you can add to an already vastly overpopulated planet.
 You are the only other person on this site that grows crops and produces their own biodiesel. That is a pretty low percentage. Plenty of people here can rationalize their business plane travel. Some vegans here have described summer travel vacations of 1000plus mile car adventures. We can do these things because it just doesn't feel shitty like sending a friendly pig off to market.  We compartmentalize our contribution and we don't feel the death we are responsible for.
 So yes it's is scary but getting to zero is going to test our preconceived notions of right and wrong.
Zero is going to be very difficult but it needs to take a very prominent place in our priorities. Pigs by the way aren't going extinct before we do. 

Bob, pigs were first domesticated in the near east so maybe we just had a longer amount of time to develop taboos there.

Policy and solutions / Re: Becoming Vegan.
« on: May 04, 2017, 12:39:54 AM »
Bob, I have seen your claim about plant protein to animal protein conversions a couple times now and since I raise pigs and keep damn good records on how much I feed them I will offer up some alternative facts. I keep 100 pigs and feed them 72 tons of barley a year. If you ballpark what I think it takes to raise a  two hundred pound pig I figure I feed about a ton of barley at 7 to 14 % protein. At pounds feed to meat yield I get 10lbs. to produce  a pound of meat, dressed carcass. If you just figure plant protein it is about one pound plant protein to one pound meat.
  If you used the average miles per gallon that a hummer uses to figure what the gallons per mile a car gets you'd be making a similar comparison. 25x is bull pucky
 I also saw Wili comparing water use to grow cattle verses crops.I don't grow cattle and I try to avoid eatting it , largely due to methane and ruminates. But I have grown vegetables on the same land I now use for pigs. I know it's not a totally fair comparison but my water use is down by more than half. Barley is a dry land crop so if you gotta count rain it gets complicated but the crazy numbers I see thrown around just don't line up with the water I use, not even close.
 If you just fed acorns these numbers get better and better. If you can think of a way to grow food and fuel a tractor and not use any fossil fuels I'd like to hear about it. Sidd grows soybeans and makes biodiesel, I grow pigs and make biodiesel from lard. I have solar panels for all electric farm demands.
Grid connected and I got a $25 credit last month. Anyway my point is you can't compare wasteful corporate farm practices with what is possible on a small scale well thought out farm that considers EROEI .
 The thing that makes this all problematic is USDA regulations and profit motives. If I were to raise only enough meat and vegetables to feed my family and power the tractors I could get to zero fossil fuel carbon. So for people that love to always look on the bright side of technology without ever considering what might be affordable for the vast majority of humans on this planet I suggest you think up ways for poor dirt farmers to convert to zero carbon. The rich really couldn't give a shit  !  Tesla trucks and tesla tractors are pipe dreams if you live on less than poverty wage like a majority of farmers in the world do.

Policy and solutions / Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« on: May 02, 2017, 12:24:15 AM »
To get to a place where we start to see atmosphere CO2 levels begin to stabilize would require world CO2 emissions to drop from their current ~ 36 Pg CO2 down to levels last seen in the mid 1970s at around 18.5 Pg CO2 per year.
 From this paper
" Reduces total land carbon sink from 3.40 plus minus .84 to 2.53 Plus or minus .93 PgC per year
 Increases total ocean carbon sink from 1.84 plus or minus .40 to 2.36 plus or minus .49 PgC per year"

The global sinks need to match up better with anthropogenic emissions before we begin to stabilize , let alone begin to reduce atmospheric CO2 concentrations . Temperatures are also effected by CO2 e so methane and NO2 also have to be reduced in addition to CO2 emissions before temperatures will stabilize.

In grossly general terms the annual 10 PgC anthropogenic carbon emissions needs to be halved and we have to get control of methane and NO2. If we accomplish all of these things and atmospheric CO2 still continues it's rise we will know feedbacks have taken over. For me the tipping point is when Mauna Loa gets to levels from the mid 1970s and continues to drop. There is some amount of carbon stored in the two major sinks that will be released back into the atmosphere do to CO2 fertilization over the last several decades . No free lunch ,what we sent into the soils or the ocean will return for the most part .

Policy and solutions / Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« on: May 01, 2017, 07:22:27 PM »
Here is some info on the Indian coal mafia, I am sure this use of coal is also not taxed or quantified in Indian coal production numbers. I really don't trust the powers that be to accurately access coal use or CO2 emissions. Accurate satellite monitoring would be a far better assessment  tool but with the new US administration we can write off that option . Does the EU have or plan on putting up CO2 monitoring satellites to replace those Trump defunds ?

Policy and solutions / Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« on: May 01, 2017, 04:57:40 PM »
I went to bed late after giving Bob a hard time and slept with a rock under my pillow. It's sunrise and my inter conflict resumes. I can't write about the ocean I know and love without shouldering a lot of angst. I will just assume Wili you have been reading my posts on the carbon cycle. I wouldn't know the ocean as well as I do if I hadn't poured thousands of gallons of fuel though the boat I owned and captained for many decades. It was a joy to challenge the Pacific and survive it, thrive in it ,but after I got to understand acidification I had a very hard time rationalizing my carbon budget and my purported love of the ocean.
 Farming vegetables seemed like a way to be productive whilst not being such an energy hog but once I got to understand distribution systems farming began to reveal many of the energy consumption problems that fishing has. I know it's difficult for those of you committed to a vegan lifestyle to believe but my forays into raising pigs, foraging and producing pig biodiesel  is   the closest I have gotten to zero ff carbon. Raising anywhere near enough animals to support a farm makes foraging food for the herd too large a task though so although I now know how to achieve the zero carbon goal I aspire to I also know I need to give up the farm to resolve the issues of scale. I can support myself  and a small family but earning a living , earning a wage while doing so seems more and more a pipe dream.
 Living off the grid, raising your own food, giving up on anything but very local transport is what is required but those things don't provide anywhere near enough money to buy a solar power system, buy an electric car, buy a little piece of land and pay taxes. Dental care and medical expenses get put aside .
 So I get agitated by techno fantasy solutions, I sometimes wish I never looked so deeply , that I could just put my wetsuit back on and work until I was so tired it all went away. If it seems like I am hard on anyone here I am sorry, I know many of you share my inter conflicts .

Policy and solutions / Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« on: May 01, 2017, 09:55:58 AM »
Bob, Yes Greenpeace, " The Degrowth Imperitive " sept.21 2014.   I just don't see how we can make assumptions about coal or energy consumption when revisions for China have only been made through 2013.
  Re. A switch to grains from meats would free up some food to be sure but it still doesn't address water, heat impacts or fertilizer. The calories we get from shipping fresh fruits and vegetables is IMO an energy hog, a vegan one.

Policy and solutions / Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« on: May 01, 2017, 07:08:34 AM »
Bob Wallace,   " food not so much"  I would gladly defer to your expertise on tech, kinda, if I had a bit more faith in your track record. We had a bit of disagreement over EIA figures on emissions a couple years ago. I said I didn't trust their reliability and you seemed confident in their numbers. China has updated their numbers .

"Energy-content-based coal consumption from 2000 to 2013 is up to 14% higher than previously reported, while coal production is up to 7% higher"

So I think rose colored glasses re. Food production should probably factor in the fuel we pour through the food production system , transport and refrigeration. Thirty years to reform the food system would be IMO more wishful thinking but I guess you figure there is plenty of extra supply to buy us more time until we tackle food security issues. We haven't started to look at how we are going to transition to something else. We have no idea how to resolve water overdraft issues or crop production problems as global warming starts to reduce yields. We are already causing lots of problems with fertilizers and eutrofication . Just figuring how to transition fertilizer production to renewables , when somebody decides that is a priority, won't solve the nutrients issues that are contributing to hypoxia and acidification in our watersheds and oceans.


Policy and solutions / Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« on: April 30, 2017, 10:30:47 PM »
rboyd, This analysis of the easy part , the renewable electric grid, is of course just one piece of the bigger picture that needs to be developed and tested. The grid, transport and food production ( I will just ignor the military and defense ) all need similar development and deployment on crazy short frame time scales.
 I am neither an engineer nor a scientist and maybe I am somewhat foolish to suggest these problems can be solved at very local , off grid scales. Anyone making any such claim better be ready to " prove up " or shut up.  Our problems with renewable energy production & food production all spin out of control when we first assume we need to mirror some form of our current system of energy
delivery , food production and economic expectations. All of those assumptions should be turned on their head with the primary goal being HOW DO WE Do THESE THINGS at any scale ?
 If I am correct and these challenges can be accomplished with very local off grid solutions then it may be possible to scale up to villages or something slightly larger. At any point when we think we can include distance and speed into our expectations I think renewable solutions will fail. In my assumptions I should also say I can't imagine renewable solutions will support current populations . But if you think growing populations, speed and long distance travel all are prerequisite to any plans for a renewable future I think those desires will serve as a poison pill . They are desires , expectation of comfort , and other constructs that will likely crumble as we begin to hit resource limits in the near term future.

Modify our expectations or meet our fate ?

Permafrost / Re: Toward Improved Discussions of Methane & Climate
« on: April 29, 2017, 06:51:49 AM »
Sidd, I looked up the PNAS article you cited "Role of atmospheric oxidation in recent methane growth"

The growth in global methane (CH4) concentration, which had been ongoing since the industrial revolution, stalled around the year 2000 before resuming globally in 2007. We evaluate the role of the hydroxyl radical (OH), the major CH4 sink, in the recent CH4 growth. We also examine the influence of systematic uncertainties in OH concentrations on CH4 emissions inferred from atmospheric observations. We use observations of 1,1,1-trichloroethane (CH3CCl3), which is lost primarily through reaction with OH, to estimate OH levels as well as CH3CC3 emissions, which have uncertainty that previously limited the accuracy of OH estimates. We find a 64–70% probability that a decline in OH has contributed to the post-2007 methane rise. Our median solution suggests that CH4 emissions increased relatively steadily during the late 1990s and early 2000s, after which growth was more modest. This solution obviates the need for a sudden statistically significant change in total CH4 emissions around the year 2007 to explain the atmospheric observations and can explain some of the decline in the atmospheric 13CH4/12CH4 ratio and the recent growth in C2H6. Our approach indicates that significant OH-related uncertainties in the CH4 budget remain, and we find that it is not possible to implicate, with a high degree of confidence, rapid global CH4 emissions changes as the primary driver of recent trends when our inferred OH trends and these uncertainties are considered.

Permafrost / Re: Toward Improved Discussions of Methane & Climate
« on: April 29, 2017, 06:37:36 AM »
Sidd and Cid-Yama, I looked at the location of the OH hole and consequent ozone hole and immediately had some questions about how UV might contribute to the coral bleaching events that we all know are
co-located. I don't have much to contribute except questions but apparently yes increased UV can be a contributing factor in Coral bleaching events. Why is it we haven't heard more about these combinations of what I agree should " scare your socks off" events. More stratospheric methane , less OH, less ozone, more UV at surface, and massive coral bleaching?

I draw the co-location from the 2014 climate gate piece linked by Cid-Yama

Science / Re: Carbon Cycle
« on: April 29, 2017, 01:51:36 AM »
Terry, There are success stories for fish management and plenty of stories about stock collapse sometimes due to excess , greed and familiar human shortcomings. Do we acknowledge success when we have examples and hold those examples up for others to follow or do we retrace our failings with race relations, nationalism, and exceptionalizm? i.e. Polarization .There are fishermen who have helped manage themselves and protect the fish stocks that keep them in business. The "failure of the commons "is not universal and groups of humans willing to do the right thing, manage themselves and to a large degree self enforce their common good over their individual interests do exist. The common good and self interest are not mutually exclusive but there does ,as a rule ,always seem to be some element willing to break the common trust and sometimes we sink their boats.
 Although overfishing probably did contribute to the story about the collapse of the Monterey sardine fishery it also coincided with a PDO flip in ~ 1945. Many of the problems for California fisheries I have
been describing are driven by forces largely beyond our ( fishermens) control but yes as the environment deteriorates we have little option but to restrict fishing efforts.
 As a rule I have always strived to put the resource first and put economics as an important factor but not one that ever superceeds the importance of the resource. Keeping your priorities straight helps when  others ,or groups of other ,decide to challenge necessary controls.
 The difficult decisions I am talking about might serve as some sort of template for governance of terrestrial resources but the larger the group of humans you are trying to manage the more it seems money and power begin to erode these ideals. I just don't think concepts like the "failure of the commons "are things we should embrace like universal truths. We need sometimes to show a little faith in other people's good intentions, and sink boats when we have to.

I guess it's " the tragedy of the commons " ... Wrong either way

Science / Re: Carbon Cycle
« on: April 28, 2017, 11:25:23 PM »
Martin, Of course I know who he is but Jeremy paints with a very broad brush that includes me. I am a fisherman and to me Jeremy chooses to create monsters to slay. I am no monster...or more accurately everyone is. I can accept I am nowhere near perfect but scapegoating fishermen for All the ills befalling the oceans will never fix ocean heating, acidification or invasive species problems. We are all culpable and we all need to take responsibility .
 If you look through the local California problems I described in my recent posts very few of them can be attributed to fishing. We don't have issues with overfishing , we have closed over twenty five percent of our state fishing grounds to all fishing and we have some damned serious problems that won't go away even if you get rid of every fisherman left.
 There are people that are willing to listen to a fisherman , people who might not listen to a scientist.
I will be here , I will try to describe what I see , I will accept my failures and try to remedy them.

Science / Re: Carbon Cycle
« on: April 27, 2017, 04:58:05 PM »
When I started diving in California there were seven species of abalone, six of which have almost totally disappeared. The one relatively healthy stock of red abalone is under starvation stress in the areas where it's population was ,until a couple years ago ,the healthiest. Starfish have suffered a major die-off from disease from Mexico into Alaska. Pycnopodia( sunstars ) , a large , fast moving reef predator has been reduced to levels that probably qualify it for listing on the ESA. Their are many other species of starfish also in trouble. There are three species of sea urchins I have seen on a regular basis for my forty year career. Disease is a reaccuring issue for one species, purples, and a couple years ago red urchins started dying. We have sent samples in to pathology labs with no results yet. These are just some of the larger nearshore reef fauna that because of their size we humans make ourselves familiar with. There are probably smaller creatures in trouble we just don't notice. Bryozoans are an example of creatures formerly ubiquitous that can dissolve its skeleton in a couple months exposure to acidified waters, waters currently upwelling in Northern California. Heat and acidification are the stressors but disease seems to be how those stressors manifest themselves. Pteropods and Bryozoans are under dissolution pressures but we don't even know what disease pressures would look like in those species, to small and largely unnoticed.
 Humans didn't even have the ability to dive and accumulate thousands of hours of dive time until one generation before me. Relative to our population numbers very few people can say they have tens of thousands of hours of dive time . Not everyone is a good observer and even some who are are in denial over what is happening. Very few people who have accumulated ten of thousands of dive hours have studied ocean acidification and denial is a problem even with some of them. We humans just aren't psychologically well suited to calmly witnessing wanton destruction of the world around us.
And if you are prescient or show anything like prescient knowledge you can expect major trouble from your fellow humans.
 Climate change, heat and acidification are killers among us. Much of what is going to happen ,what is already beginning to happen around us , can be foreseen. Denial is just another killer and it is just as deadly in the long run of things. Stand witness my friends , write ,tell us what you see from your place in the world.
 My wife's favorite line from " Out of Africa " is " God made the world round so we wouldn't ever be able to see too far down the road "
 We have satellites now

Science / Re: Carbon Cycle
« on: April 27, 2017, 09:02:27 AM »
Terry, I have always been an avid science reader. I heard about acidification and read everything I could get my hands on. When I was writing a piece for "National Fisherman" I wanted to quote Andy Knoll. I wanted to get his permission so I got in contact with him. In our brief correspondence I asked him for some advice and he said I should write down the things I saw. I have tried but the story for the very brief Twelve years I have watched is becoming stranger and stranger. I need the support of you and my fellow travelers here on the forum. To be honest even though I copied the little piece  I posted above to several dozen of my fishermen friends I haven't received even one response back from the men I know living their lives in the same ocean I describe. They don't hold me in contempt, some of them are scared like I am , most of them go about their lives and fish and try to adapt to the changes. We don't in our short lives have any context to compare what we are seeing with what life used to be, or how strange our experiance is , or what we should compare it to.
 Tomorrow I will be on a conference call where several fisheries scientists and managers will discuss adaptation strategies to deal with nearshore reef issues tied to problems with climate change. In reality none of us has a lot of confidence in our abilities to manage our way out of this. We hope everything resolves itself , we are nowhere up to the challenges before us. Some problems will resolve themselves I am sure but some pieces of a world we don't understand are slipping away. I will get back into the water , write about the changes taking place and do my damn best to make some kind of difference.
 So if I might repeat myself you are part of my support and I appreciate your concern for our shared predicament.

Consequences / Re: Global Surface Air Temperatures
« on: April 26, 2017, 04:41:43 AM »
Archimid, Sorry the quote in my last post somehow misleadingly attributes my words to you. I tried to fix it but I am technologically challenged.

Consequences / Re: Global Surface Air Temperatures
« on: April 26, 2017, 04:32:14 AM »
I know it's too simplistic an answer but 1945 was the start of a cold water PDO phase. Also the "pause"that started ~ 2000 was another cold water PDO shift. We are currently in a Warm water phase that only started a few years ago and is expected to last another ten of fifteen years. If global air temps are sensitive to the PDO phase this isn't a good indication of near term temperature trends.

Archimid, I don't know if the PDO flip that started Jan. 2014 will continue or not. Generally a PDP flip lasts 15-25 years but we never really know unless we are looking in the rear view mirror. I still am unsure of what causes these long period fluctuations. The biological ramifications are quite profound however and the changes that occurred as the current warm phase started and have been dramatic . I posted recently on the Carbon Cycle page with a link to some biological problems that started with "the blob" back in 2014. This of course preceded the 2015-2016 El Niño.

If these changes are tied to the PDO and it continues for 10 to 20 more years the effects of the ocean heat is going to have consequences beyond those we are seeing with air temperatures at least here in California.

I think the PDO is the great question here. Is it in a true positive cycle for the next 15 years? Or maybe this is just a fluke (maybe caused by removal of aerosols) and it will switch to negative soon?

If it does switch to negative we might see the Arctic recover. If it doesn't, god help us all.

Science / Re: Carbon Cycle
« on: April 25, 2017, 05:29:56 PM »
Is what we are looking at just one point in a cycle or is this more a reflection of where the nearshore reef ecosystem is headed ? I wonder if the fishermen in Kiribati are sitting in their houses staring out over their bleached dead reefs that have supported them for hundreds of generations wondering the same thing . Will the reefs repair themselves or is there something we as fishermen can do to help repair the damage before the next waves of hot , acidified, diseased water come again ?
 Will enough starfish recover from the densovirus to reassume their role in reef ecology?
Will the abalone hold on until the kelp recovers, will the purple urchin problem resolve itself ? Do we as humans try to intervene or just sit back slack jawed as pieces of the ecosystem die out never to be replaced ? How many people care if the bryozoans dissolve , never to be replaced ? How many people would know a Bryozoa if they were looking at one. Can they have empathy for something they just don't know or is extinction at their hands just one more necessary cost of human progress, greed, and demand for comfort ?
 So a fisherman would tell you , I am sure , that we should try to restore the starfish, kill a bunch of purple urchins by creating a market for them, help restore the kelp beds even if that means moving macrocystis into areas where nereocystis was once dominant .The ocean is heating and species just can't move north fast enough to adapt at a rate that human caused climate change has thrown at them. We are living in a world with atmospheric CO2 levels not seen in millions of years. The heat and acidification caused by this ,in geological terms,instantaneous change is wreaking habitats . Yet humans , humans largely disconnected from nature,somehow think we should just stand aside and let nature recover but any romantic notion of wilderness and the ability of nature to rebuild the world we used to know is continually challenged , crushed, by the rate of change taking place. Humans by a huge majority don't know life in the oceans. Humans will never know the life forms they are shoving into extinction.
 So we fishermen struggling against changes taking place are challenged not only by the scale of the challenge but so to challenged by romantic myths about wilderness and nature perpetuated by people living in shinning cities, flying in their jets, and eating food
grown in distant lands. The advice from these humans is as damaging as the consequences of their lifestyles and consumption habits.
 Rage against the machine and against the dying of the light
 Bruce Steele

Consequences / Re: Global Surface Air Temperatures
« on: April 24, 2017, 04:25:09 PM »
I know it's too simplistic an answer but 1945 was the start of a cold water PDO phase. Also the "pause"that started ~ 2000 was another cold water PDO shift. We are currently in a Warm water phase that only started a few years ago and is expected to last another ten of fifteen years. If global air temps are sensitive to the PDO phase this isn't a good indication of near term temperature trends.

The rest / Re: The Trump Presidency (was "Presidential Poll")
« on: April 24, 2017, 04:16:56 AM »
If I might stand up for American stupid I'd like to try. Maybe the problem goes clear back to the times of Ned Ludd but for my relatives and a somewhat more modern example I think when the US. Dept. of Agriculture decided farmers needed to get big or get out and our agrarian culture was converted to machines and commodity crops our descent began. We were the fodder for war, we watched as our family farms couldn't keep up and were converted to modern agriculture. Nobody seemed to value our contribution to building this country or the values we still cherish. A huge portion of flyover country is still trying to hang on to the past , a proud past. We still hunt, we fish , we'd like to believe we can take care of ourselves. ( I don't talk about hunting on this blog ) Farming for little or no money so city folks can look down their nose at us gets old quick. Sending our kids off to fight senseless wars because it pays some kind of wage is generational. Walmart and big box stores gutting our little towns and has reduced many small towns to shells of their former selves.
 I should also point out I spend my time here and not on some preper gunnut site. My Luddite tendencies aren't an unreasonable response to where I see civilization taking our planet and I don't believe doubling down on technology is an intelligent response. I maybe contrary but I don't think I'm evil or ignorant and breaking things might be necessary. I wish Trump actually shared some of my values but I don't believe that for a minute.
 So country folk don't like city folks. I don't know how to solve these problems but I don't think city folks driving Teslas and living large on six figure incomes could give a shit that they are so divorced from nature and any notion of self reliance. Any fantasy that the cities can just convert to electric cars and ignor their deep reliance on other people's misery is going to at some point result in armed conflict.
When that time comes I wouldn't bet on technological supremacy winning the day.
 So yes the Trump vote was the middle finger and maybe some people are happy he might break things. They are still hoping he will.
 So maybe trying to walk a mile in another mans shoes is still good advice. Maybe we aren't as stupid
as we are angry but returning to the past also means social breakdown. Sometimes I hope for that too.
Nature would probably benefit .

Science / Re: Carbon Cycle
« on: April 23, 2017, 07:09:51 AM »
There is the paleorecord and there is current biology and studies on the effects of elevated pCO2 on modern genera. The recent study on dissolution of bryozoans has sent me back into reading work by Andrew Knoll.
From a paper titled "Bio Mineralization and Evolutionary History"
 Permo-Triassic extinction and it's aftermath pages 341-344
   "Catastrophic carbon dioxide increases provides two distinct kill mechanisms - direct physiological inhibition of metabolism and climate change associated with greenhouse enhancement"

Consequences / Re: Effects on Arctic Wildlife
« on: April 23, 2017, 05:52:02 AM »
Beaufort beavers. Beaver dams a few miles from the Beaufort have shown up for the first time in the Northern reaches of Canada.

Science / Re: Carbon Cycle
« on: April 23, 2017, 04:01:55 AM »
Thanks Wili and Terry, That line "cnidarian nightmares "rolls off the tongue better with the proper pronunciation of CNIDARIA.  The C is silent.

Science / Re: Carbon Cycle
« on: April 22, 2017, 04:52:25 PM »
Here is an old article on ocean acidification. Dr. Andrew Knoll found corals, brachipods, and bryozoan genera well represented in the paleorecord of the end Permian event. They are not physically well suited to rapid changes in ocean chemistry , acidification. History is rewalking a very scary route![/url

It will come from below
 and we will no more know than the trilobites
 our place in it
Brachiopods and bryozoans
 turned to rock
 like before
Cnidarian nightmares
 sulfur, floating fish
It would take a time machine
 to turn this back
And believe me
 It was us
A poem I wrote on the subject, I posted it before but somehow seems appropriate . Terry liked it !

Science / Re: Carbon Cycle
« on: April 22, 2017, 04:36:18 PM »
Canary in the kelp forest
Published 21 April 2017   Press releases Leave a Comment
The one-two punch of warming waters and ocean acidification is predisposing some marine animals to dissolving quickly under conditions already occurring off the Northern California coast, according to a study from the University of California, Davis.

In the study, published in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, researchers at the UC Davis Bodega Marine Laboratory raised bryozoans, also known as “moss animals,” in seawater tanks and exposed them to various levels of water temperature, food and acidity.

The scientists found that when grown in warmer waters and then exposed to acidity, the bryozoans quickly began to dissolve. Large portions of their skeletons disappeared in as little as two months.

“We thought there would be some thinning or reduced mass,” said lead author Dan Swezey, a recent Ph.D. graduate in professor Eric Sanford’s lab at the UC Davis Bodega Marine Laboratory. “But whole features just dissolved practically before our eyes.”


Bryozoans are colonial animals, superficially similar to, but not related, to corals. They are abundant in California kelp forests and are calcareous, meaning they build their honeycomb-shaped skeletons from calcium carbonate.

The scientists found that when raised under warming conditions, bryozoans altered their chemical composition by building higher levels of magnesium into their skeletons, particularly if they were also eating less food. When exposed to acidic conditions already observed off coastal California, these changes predisposed the animals to dissolve.

The researchers consider bryozoans a canary in the coal mine for other marine animals that build calcareous skeletons containing magnesium. These include sea stars, sea urchins, calcifying algae and tube-building worms.

The authors do not know why the bryozoans added more magnesium to their skeletons under warmer temperatures. But they conclude that marine organisms with skeletons made of high-magnesium calcite may be especially susceptible to ocean acidification because this form of calcium carbonate dissolves more easily than others.

Bryozoans grow in connected colonies. During the experiments, the animals shut down parts of themselves when undergoing the stress of ocean acidification, redirecting their energy to new growth. This was somewhat like closing down units of a condominium complex while building new ones at the same time. But the moss animals could not outpace the dissolution.

“They were trying to grow but were dissolving at the same time,” Swezey said.


The authors said the study underlines the increasing vulnerability of calcified animals to ocean acidification, which occurs as the ocean absorbs more atmospheric carbon emitted through the burning of fossil fuels.

During the spring and summer months, deep ocean water rich in carbon dioxide periodically wells up along the California coast when surface waters are pushed offshore by strong winds. These upwelling events also push nutrients to the surface to help support kelp forests and productive fisheries. However, this deep water tends to be more acidic.

Climate modeling shows that the trends of warming ocean temperatures, stronger winds and increasingly strong upwelling events are expected to continue in the coming years as carbon dioxide concentrations in the atmosphere increase. This indicates that acidic conditions will likely become more common, rather than episodic.


“Marine life is increasingly faced with many changes at once,” said co-author Sanford, a professor in the UC Davis Department of Evolution and Ecology. “For bryozoans, their response to warmer temperature makes them unexpectedly vulnerable to ocean acidification. The question now is whether other marine species might respond in a similar way.” (…)

Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2017 melting season
« on: April 19, 2017, 04:52:25 AM »
Tigertown, I never saw any evidence the Beaufort Gyre had stopped. From the post I made on Mar. 31 ITP 98 has moved from 55.99 to it's current location at 55.56 The buoy track line never showed anything but clockwise drift and neither did the other two ITP buoys reporting locations in the Beaufort.

Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2017 melting season
« on: March 31, 2017, 07:39:58 AM »
Tigertown, There are still four ITP WHOI buoys reporting locations. Three in the Beaufort gyre 97, 98, 99 and  93 trapped into fast ice on the north coast of Svalbard.  The thing I find intriguing  is that none of the reporting buoys in the Beaufort gyre show the Northwest thick ice drift modeled in your last post. I have to believe buoys sending real time data over models in this case.
 I like to watch the temp /salinity contours but sadly we only have one of the above listed buoys still sending T/S profiles this year.

This buoy is sitting just North of McClure Strait and should show northward drift if the model was representing current conditions

Arctic sea ice / Re: Stupid Questions :o
« on: April 18, 2017, 09:49:44 PM »
Jim, You should read through the whole tread but here is one post from ASLR. Much of the thread has to do with Antacrtic bottom water formation and further info on the North Atlantic Bottom water processes are necessary for a full picture of bottom water. The Pacific doesn't have a northern hemispheric production site but the main site of bottom water return to surface waters occurred in the Eastern Equatorial Pacific. Residence times from creation to return are about a thousand years.

Re: Discussion of WAIS Collapse Main Period from 2060 to 2100
« Reply #47 on: July 12, 2013, 05:26:22 PM »
I am concerned that some readers are not familiar with the excellent work of Purkey and Johnson focused on AABW but also very important to the trends in warm CDW (see reply #9 in this trend, and in the first attached figure see the Weddell-Enderby temperature curve indicating warm water that could be contributing now to basal ice melting for FRIS).  The following reference and abstract cites their continuing valuable work in 2013:
Antarctic Bottom Water warming and freshening: Contributions to sea level rise, ocean freshwater budgets, and global heat gain
by: Sarah G. Purkey, and Gregory C. Johnson; Journal of Climate 2013 ; doi:

Abstract: "Freshening and warming of Antarctic Bottom Water (AABW) between the 1980s and 2000s are quantified, assessing the relative contributions of water-mass changes and isotherm heave. The analysis uses highly accurate, full-depth, ship-based, conductivity-temperature-depth measurements taken along repeated oceanographic sections around the Southern Ocean. Fresher varieties of AABW are present within the South Pacific and South Indian oceans in 2000s compared to the 1990s, with the strongest freshening in the newest waters adjacent to the Antarctic continental slope and rise indicating a recent shift in the salinity of AABW produced in this region. Bottom waters in the Weddell Sea exhibit significantly less water-mass freshening than those in the other two southern basins. However, a decrease in the volume of the coldest, deepest waters is observed throughout the entire Southern Ocean. This isotherm heave causes a salinification and warming on isobaths from the bottom up to the shallow potential temperature maximum. The water-mass freshening of AABW in the Indian and Pacific sectors is equivalent to a freshwater flux of 73 ±26 Gt yr-1, roughly half of the estimated recent mass loss of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet. Isotherm heave integrated below 2000 m and south of 30 °S equates to a net heat uptake of 34 ±3 TW of excess energy entering the deep ocean from deep volume loss of AABW and 0.37 ±0.15 mm yr-1 of sea level rise from associated thermal expansion."
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Jai, Planning on further increases in total emissions to 1000 Gt or more is likely or worse inevitable.
I still think there is uncertainty in whether current anthropogenic emission trends or feedbacks are feeding CO2 atmospheric levels. Probably some of each. Rboyd posted a EIA revision in China's contributions that illustrates our problems with parsing out anthro from feedbacks.

"Energy-content-based coal consumption from 2000 to 2013 is up to 14% higher than previously reported, while coal production is up to 7% higher"

We should assume other countries fudge their emission figures as well and any reports of a flattening of anthro CO2 is premature. If on the other hand feedbacks are in majority the reason we see continued atmospheric CO2 increases the 1000 Gt number may far short of what is necessary to somehow drawdown, whenever we figure out how to do so.
 I also agree the ocean will give back what CO2 it has absorbed but the timeframe of that release may be in the thousand year timeframe. Remember also that the ocean has more ability to hold CO2 at cold temperatures so as we heat the oceans they will actually return more CO2 than what it has absorbed .
The amount of the return from the oceans is dependent on the gas partial pressure difference  between the ocean and the atmosphere like you stated.

Consequences / Re: 2017 ENSO
« on: April 18, 2017, 06:54:37 AM »
The PDO index just came in for March. Still holding positive at + .74 a slight increase from last month at + .70

Maybe pyrolysis and converting forests & kelp into charcoal is better suited to the policy & solutions page. Converting even a small fraction of the 861 +- 66  Pg C of current forests would add to rather than solve our human impacts on planetary ecosystems. Planting and coppicing wood crops has more promise but crop land and water resources are not limitless.
 Jai, why the need to draw down 1,000 Pg C ?  We are only now surpassing 600 Gt C in total accumulated emissions.

2020-2030. First year < 1m.  Maybe sooner
Late year requires some prediction on the loss of the halocline...  Much later I would guess

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