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Discussion in 'Personal' started by lanokia, Jan 21, 2016.
Arrhenius, the Swedish scientist (who was a bit dodgy at times in terms of his views on race) published a paper in 1896 describing the effect of Carbonic Acid (CO2) in the air, on the temperature of the ground. He proposed a doubling of the concentration would increase temperature by 5-6 degrees. Not a bad calculation at the time, and not all that far out today...
He was aware that burning fossil fuels would increase the temperature. He wouldn't have foreseen the amount of CO2 being produced after his death though...
By the 1960s, the basics had been worked out but it took time for the science to spread. By the start of the 1980s, it was becoming pretty clear if you wanted to see it.
I just wish they'd hurry up and get on with it. 40 years ago they were promising us vinyards in our back gardens and siestas at midday. No need to do any proper work, because the world would be flocking to Britain for their holidays and all we'd need to know is how to make cocktails and rip them off.
Why did they lie?
I think a lot of people thought something similar "I could do with it being a bit warmer" and that it would be a good thing. If it wasn't positive it was hated with a vengeance by many as being simply wrong as it was a bit too much to take in, then there are those who think god couldn't possibly let it happen unless he was acting in a mysterious way for our own good.
Extra heat means extra energy though and it doesn't manifest itself simply as a temperature rise, rather as lots of extra weather which we've seemed to have had for a while now.
I remember being worried about the Ozone layer in the early 1970's. There was an episode of "Tomorrow's World" which advised us all to stop using aerosol sprays.
(Does anyone remember "Tomorrow's World"?! I remember them showing Cling film, CD"s and a 4-wheel drive tractor thingy, before these things became commonplace )
AFAICR there were conflicting messages being sent out in the early Seventies. There was lots of, "We're doomed. Doomed, I tell ye," stuff around, one of which was a warning about the imminence of a new Ice Age!
Climate science as we know it today did not exist in the 1960s and 1970s. The integrated enterprise embodied in the Nobel Prizewinning work of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change existed then as separate threads of research pursued by isolated groups of scientists. Atmospheric chemists and modelers grappled with the measurement of changes in carbon dioxide and atmospheric gases, and the changes in climate that might result. Meanwhile, geologists and paleoclimate researchers tried to understand when Earth slipped into and out of ice ages, and why. An enduring popular myth suggests that in the 1970s the climate science community was predicting “global cooling” and an “imminent” ice age, an observation frequently used by those who would undermine what climate scientists say today about the prospect of global warming. A review of the literature suggests that, on the contrary, greenhouse warming even then dominated scientists' thinking as being one of the most important forces shaping Earth's climate on human time scales. More importantly than showing the falsehood of the myth, this review describes how scientists of the time built the foundation on which the cohesive enterprise of modern climate science now rests.
"Showing the falsehood of the myth"...hope they know more about science than they know about English.
4 wheel drive tractors predate Tomorrows World!
@lanokia: Thanks for putting me straight on this. I was only reporting an impression I got, I suppose from watching the TV although I do have a dim recollection of an article in New Scientist.
Perfectly OK. I confess I had the same impression for a long time... then I saw a youtube video that debunked it and now I can't find that video!
Not the video I mentioned but does a similar job...