Sunday, May 10, 2009

How Many Will Die?--GW Nuttery

How many will die?

I have had several AGW advocates ask me about how many people will die as the seas rise. I think it was Eric (and Eric, don't feel the need to respond necessarily) who asked about the poor Bangladeshi's who will die as the seas rise. But many others have stated similar sentiments about Pacific islanders, and others. It seems that it is heartless to not do something to save those people who are going to simply stand there while the seas rise awaiting their drowning.

Well, I would like to turn the question around. How many will die because of AGW nuttery. I read a letter by Les Carter in New Scientist. After this gentleman, Les Carter says we must reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 70 per cent within 5 years or 'we will have blown it', he says:

"We don't 'need' more energy, we don't 'need' economic stimulus, we don't even 'need' jobs. What we do need is a stable climate" Les Carter, "Action on Climate" New Scientist April 18, 2009, p. 24

Let's start with cutting everyone's energy use by 70%. That means that farmers would have 70% less energy to grow your food. So, what does this mean? According to this site source the average American eats about 2800 calories per day (you will find higher numbers but these numbers are adjusted for spoilage and other losses, which calories, obviously aren't eaten).

Cutting our food by 70% means that we would live on 840 calories per day. Hmmm. The human body needs at least 1200 calories per day to live. Anything less than that means you are starving to death. So, what Mr. Carter is suggesting is that in order to save the world from global warming, we starve most of the world to death. What a splendid solution, Mr. Carter. After you, of course.

So, let's leave the farmers alone. I want to eat. That means that everyone else must now cut about 73% of their energy use (farmers represent 3% of the US population Source). Great. That means 73% fewer jobs. Why? Because we must stop making 73% of the automobiles (most of you will walk everywhere), we must stop making 73% of the medicines (medicines are very energy intensive chemicals. We must stop making 70% of the electricity (which, you should know, is used to pump drinkable water into your home).

Les Carter's world is a wondrous affair. No water, no cars, no lights, no jobs, and somehow poor dim-witted Les thinks he is saving the world. (I guess that old Vietnam era phrase is true--in order to save the world we must destroy it).

So, Les, [maybe we should spell it Less, in honor of his intelligence, hereinafter he will be Les(s) ], how do we buy our food when we have no jobs and thus no homes no money and no delivery system?

And this raises another question, Les(s). Do we make the farmer work for free for us? Is he supposed to be happy growing our food and only accepting his own food in return? Isn't that called slavery? Didn't millions starve in China when they tried to make all the farmers live that way, and what the Chinese found was that crop yields plummeted dramatically? (For the record, I lived in China for a while, speak mandarin and heard stories from that era--stories like eating caterpillars because there was nothing else to eat).

Great world you are leading us to Les(s).

For those worried about the state of our educational system, you should stop worrying now. The answer is in. Les(s) proves how abysmal is the education in critical thinking. Les(s) seems not to know that the world has never ever had a stable climate and the desire to have one is due to the propaganda put out by the Holophobic Holocene deniers who think that all of what is happening today has never ever happened in the past. In other words, it is because of the poor science education (even among scientists and the otherwise educated intelligentsia). They don't know about what has happened in the past because there is a YEC-like tendency on the part of Holocene deniers to ignore what has happened merely 5000 years ago when the climate was hotter, the alpine and Norwegian glaciers were melted, when the Antarctic Ice shelves were collapsed, etc.

see Holophobic fear and Holocene Denial Syndrome

So, does any global warming advocate think he can do without 70% of his energy?


  1. "So, does any global warming advocate think he can do without 70% of his energy?"

    I can. This month I used 0kWh of electricity according to my electricity bill. This month I went without 100% of my fossil fuel based electricity. My car gets about 35mpg, nearly twice that of the Hummers I still occasionally see driving around. That's when I drive my car, rather than taking my bike to the grocery store.

    But more importantly since you think the educational system has faile folks like Les in terms of critical thinking, perhaps it has failed you in terms of history? I recommend you read a book called "Cadillac Desert" if you haven't already done so. Where I live, in California, an immense amount of energy is required to sustain one of the largest agricultural segments of the U.S. and it's because most of it is in an area that is not intended to be a giant mega-farm. We humans in our hubris have overpopulated a desert and we force it to provide food for us on a scale in some cases larger than the more agricultural regions (like where I grew up in the Midwest).

    No one denies that addressing issues of global warming will have costs. Sometimes immense. But those costs _can_ start with improvements in efficiency. Vehicles that get 14mpg should never have been an option, let alone quite popular. Agriculture doesn't have to be run out of a desert when we have a big agricultural net exporter just a few states over to the east.

    I'm not lilly white. I live here in SoCal and I'm part of the problem. SoCal is a desert which requires lots of water it doesn't have. This part of the country is not made to support the population we have here. And for that I feel guilty. This is part of why I don't water my lawn, use solar electricity, attempt to do some of my running around town on a bike, etc.

    I'm not going to fight tooth and nail against saving the climate that has been in effect for the past several thousand years. I'll do what I am supposed to do.

    What if I'm wrong? We've made our systems more efficient and sustainable. What if _you're_ wrong?

  2. Sorry, Hagiograph, you are not doing without 70% of your emissions. You are not counting the emissions generated in producing and transporting the food you eat. Ever hear of fertilizer? Ever hear of tractors? They both use oil.

    How about water coming out of your tank? Electricity is generated by coal and that electricity is used to pressure the water in the pipes so it will come out of the ground.

    Hmmm, what about the electricity you use to post your message. You may be at a library, but you are still using the kwh even if you aren't billed for it.

    Did you make your own shoes? If not, they were probably made overseas and shipped, via diesel, to the store where you bought them.

    In short, you are kidding yourself that you are using only 30% of the energy you think you are.

  3. Oh, but I _generated_ 55kWh of electricity _back to the grid_ last month! In fact I used a net NEGATIVE 55kWh of electricity.

    I am under no illusion that I am using no energy. I am fully aware that I live in the world.

    But I am the kind of global warming advocate who is putting his money where his mouth is. I generate solar energy back the grid, I drive a fuel efficient car, I will take the bus to my jury duty tomorrow, I bicycle to the grocery store when I can.

    I believe the majority of professional climate scientists (especially when their science makes sense) and I do my part.

    I think this is virtue. In the end if I am wrong I've spent less on electricity than most around me, I've spent less on gas than most around me, I've helped to make my corner of the world a wee bit more sustainable.

    I'm not perfect, but I am following the data, I'm following the conclusions and I'm taking action.

  4. Living in California, you get subsidized solar. In Texas I don't. I looked into powering my ranch with solar. $252,000 dollars to do it, and, if the grid goes down, you can't use it, as you are quite aware. A 50 year pay back and a 30 year lifetime for solar cells doesn't seem like an economic deal.

  5. So you think I got my Solar with minimal cost to myself because it's "subsidized"? Well, you are partially correct we got subsidies (at least one of which YOU can get because you are a citizen of the U.S.), but indeed I went into some great deal of debt to do this, most of which I've paid off, through my own hard work.

    But again, you missed the point: I didn't do it because of a profit-to-cost ratio. I did it largely because I live in SoCal where the sun shines an inordinate amount each year. It's the "right" thing to do here. I did it because I believe in what I "preach". I put my money where my mouth is. Followed my convictions.

    Interesting that you keep finding ways to denigrate the decision. It's a bad economic deal for me, it's not subsidized for you, I'm still using other forms of energy.

    Sorry but none of that matters. I did it because it's something I _can_ do and it something I _believe_ in. I read the science, I believe the scientists, and I act in accord.

    Why would you not just note this as a virtue. I'm putting my actions behind my statements. I am not just a "limosine librul". I'm paying out my money for the "right things". Even if you don't believe in anthropogenic global warming, I'm at least using less of the limited natural resources, so others can use them. Isn't that an added value?