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    I don't really know if this is the best place to post this but i really want to hear your opinions in preparation for my university interview next week! Do you really think it's happening? What do you think we need to do now? What do you think we need to do in the future?

    Thank you for your participation!
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    Yes I think it is happening.

    We need to invest massively in science funding. There are many ways of preventing this becoming a crisis, the Holy Grail of this is nuclear fusion. Look up about it, there is already a joint European programme to build the biggest fusion reactor in the world in France. If we can get fusion going, we will laugh at our energy problems.
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    Is it happening? Yes. Is it manmade? Not proven. What do we need to do now? It can't hurt to reduce our reliance upon fossil fuels and energy in general while developing renewable energy technologies, grow fewer cattle, plant more trees, stop deforestation etc. What should we do in the future? Reduce population sizes (but many moral and ethical issues to resolve). Hope that's a useful starting point and good luck next week!
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    Well I think that anthropogenic climate change is indeed happening and it shouldn't even really be disputed.
    My point is that there is no real reason to act as if it isn't real. Investing in cleaner and more efficient technologies is surely desirable anyway? Even if you believe that we can't influence the climate, surely you understand the consequences of pollution on our health and the carrying capacity of the land we live on?
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    (Original post by avengedabbie)
    I don't really know if this is the best place to post this but i really want to hear your opinions in preparation for my university interview next week! Do you really think it's happening? What do you think we need to do now? What do you think we need to do in the future?

    Thank you for your participation!
    We know as a fact that climate change is occurring and have shown beyond reasonable doubt that the changes we are seeing are driven by anthropogenic causes. What we need is globally co-ordinated, meaningful action to immediately cut carbon emissions, moving energy infrastructure away from fossil fuels and towards renewables and nuclear energy. Most importantly, we need a global carbon tax and intensive regulation so cutting carbon emissions makes economic sense. If we maintain a capitalist economy then we have to start accounting for environmental cost. At the moment, environmental damage is simply disregarded in calculations and corporations are allowed to pollute with fairly minimal consequences - this is not a sustainable system, you cannot operate forever on a deeply flawed economic model.

    Of course, the above is very ideological and these necessary changes are not going to happen rapidly enough. It is therefore important that we try to cut our losses by looking seriously at adaptation as well as mitigation and it is worth researching seriously into geo-engineering as a last resort.

    It's important to note that when we're talking about minimising the damage of climate change, the issue is more political and social than scientific. Whilst science might help us find more efficient solutions and allow us to understand the problem better, the fact of the matter is that we already understand the problem fairly well, we understand what needs to be done and it is within our capability to make these changes. So why aren't these changes being made? Politics.
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    (Original post by Plagioclase)
    We know as a fact that climate change is occurring and have shown beyond reasonable doubt that the changes we are seeing are driven by anthropogenic causes.
    My emphasis - I disagree with you. Although the vast majority of scientific opinion concurs there is still plenty of reasonable doubt - eg see here for some scientists who disagree.
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    I only figured out 2 weeks ago that some do not believe in climate change.

    Why is that? A better question is what are the arguments and proofs if any?
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    Species extinction is happening on a much shorter timescale than climate change. It is devastating to think that my children may not be able to see elephants in the wild

    :cry2:
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    (Original post by Duncan2012)
    My emphasis - I disagree with you. Although the vast majority of scientific opinion concurs there is still plenty of reasonable doubt - eg see here for some scientists who disagree.
    The number of people on that list is absolutely tiny. There is considerably more controversy about many other "fundamental" things in other fields of science that everyone takes for granted, the only reason why people make such a fuss about the tiny proportion of scientists that go against the scientific consensus on climate change is because of political motivation. You will not be taken very seriously in a climate-science academic environment if you deny the existence of anthropogenic climate change because the evidence is absolutely overwhelming. This is not the same as saying that there is no uncertainty, but the uncertainty is small enough so that there is no rational basis to assume that it's not anthropogenic.

    Furthermore, if you go through that list and exclude the people who are not specialists (and whose views are therefore not particularly relevant, you wouldn't want a climate scientist in charge of CERN so I'm not entirely sure why we should be prioritising a particle physicist's views on climate change over a climate scientist's), who have political motivations (Willie Soon or Fred Singer, for instance) or whose research has been discredited (Willie Soon and Richard Lindzen, for instance), you are left with barely anybody.

    (Original post by TheRealLifeBane)
    I only figured out 2 weeks ago that some do not believe in climate change.Why is that? A better question is what are the arguments and proofs if any?
    There are a number of political and economic reasons why some people simply cannot accept climate change. These arguments are generally not based on solid science (indeed, the vast majority of climate change deniers don't understand the first thing about climate science), they're based on political convenience. There are some very good books exploring the psychology of climate change.
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    (Original post by Plagioclase)
    The number of people on that list is absolutely tiny. There is considerably more controversy about many other "fundamental" things in other fields of science that everyone takes for granted, the only reason why people make such a fuss about the tiny proportion of scientists that go against the scientific consensus on climate change is because of political motivation. You will not be taken very seriously in a climate-science academic environment if you deny the existence of anthropogenic climate change because the evidence is absolutely overwhelming. This is not the same as saying that there is no uncertainty, but the uncertainty is small enough so that there is no rational basis to assume that it's not anthropogenic. If you go through that list and exclude the people who are not specialists (and whose views are therefore not particularly relevant, you wouldn't want a climate scientist in charge of CERN so I'm not entirely sure why we should be listening to a particle physicist's views on climate change), who have political motivations (Willie Soon, for instance) or whose research has been discredited, you are left with barely anybody.
    I'm not trying to justify a particular viewpoint, I'm just pointing out that there are plenty of relevant and neutral atmospheric scientists, oceanographers, paleoclimatologists and directors of various university research centres on that list who argue that it's not manmade. It's true that around 97% of actively publishing climate scientists agree it is (NASA) but 3% is not insignificant - it's not even 3-sigma. Just because an opinion is unpopular does not automatically make it wrong. 'People' used to think the earth was the centre of the universe. 'People' were wrong.
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    (Original post by Duncan2012)
    I'm not trying to justify a particular viewpoint, I'm just pointing out that there are plenty of relevant and neutral atmospheric scientists, oceanographers, paleoclimatologists and directors of various university research centres on that list who argue that it's not manmade. It's true that around 97% of actively publishing climate scientists agree it is (NASA) but 3% is not insignificant - it's not even 3-sigma. Just because an opinion is unpopular does not automatically make it wrong. 'People' used to think the earth was the centre of the universe. 'People' were wrong.
    A 97% consensus (which is almost certainly an underestimate) is extremely high, most areas of science do not get that level of consensus. To get such unanimous support from a global scientific community about such an incredibly complex and controversial subject is remarkable. Once again, I'll repeat that nobody is suggesting that we can say with 100% certainty that they're right, that's not how science works. But here's a good analogy I like to draw on. Imagine you were told that you've got a cancer that will kill you if you didn't operate on it. You look for a second opinion, and they agree. You continue to seek extra opinion upon extra opinion until finally, after 49 doctors telling you that you need the operation, you find one doctor (who has some 'interesting' funding arrangements) who tells you that the other doctors are just alarmist and that it's nothing to worry about. Would you seriously gamble your life on the tiny chance that the 49 doctors are wrong? Of course it's possible that they're all wrong, it doesn't change the fact that ignoring the overwhelming consensus would be an incredibly stupid thing to do in this situation. It's the exact same case with climate change. The likelihood that we're right is extremely high and the risks of ignoring the consequences will be catastrophic. Do you really want to bet the lives of millions of people (as well as the global economy) on the incredibly small chance that somehow the most deeply scrutinised scientific community on the planet has got it wrong?

    I'd also like to make a point that the "centre of the universe" analogy is not at all relevant. That conclusion was not based on a scientific consensus.
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    (Original post by Plagioclase)
    A 97% consensus (which is almost certainly an underestimate) is extremely high, most areas of science do not get that level of consensus. To get such unanimous support from a global scientific community about such an incredibly complex and controversial subject is remarkable. Once again, I'll repeat that nobody is suggesting that we can say with 100% certainty that they're right, that's not how science works. But here's a good analogy I like to draw on. Imagine you were told that you've got a cancer that will kill you if you didn't operate on it. You look for a second opinion, and they agree. You continue to seek extra opinion upon extra opinion until finally, after 49 doctors telling you that you need the operation, you find one doctor (who has some 'interesting' funding arrangements) who tells you that the other doctors are just alarmist and that it's nothing to worry about. Would you seriously gamble your life on the tiny chance that the 49 doctors are wrong? Of course it's possible that they're all wrong, it doesn't change the fact that ignoring the overwhelming consensus would be an incredibly stupid thing to do in this situation. It's the exact same case with climate change. The likelihood that we're right is extremely high and the risks of ignoring the consequences will be catastrophic. Do you really want to bet the lives of millions of people (as well as the global economy) on the incredibly small chance that somehow the most deeply scrutinised scientific community on the planet has got it wrong?

    I'd also like to make a point that the "centre of the universe" analogy is not at all relevant. That conclusion was not based on a scientific consensus.
    The 'center of the universe' analogy is perfectly relevant - in the ancient Greek world the geocentric model was almost universally accepted and included in reference works by Aristotle and Ptolemy. It was the predominant belief until Copernicus and Keppler came along centuries later.

    I'm not here to promote any particular view, but I can see your 'we're right because there are more of us and you'll regret it if you don't listen to us' argument has ground to a stalemate. Unfortunately this does appear to be one of the usual features of the whole climate change issue.

    Hopefully there are some things we can agree on - the earth's temperature has fluctuated for millennia (Wikipedia) and at various points in its history it has been significantly warmer than it is now. Sea levels have varied by hundreds of metres. Some 7000 years ago Doggerland still existed, and sea levels were about 120m lower than they are today. Obviously none of that was due to manmade climate change.

    Some of the big questions remain - what happens if temperatures rise 2degrees? Why are we only comparing against temperatures from the last hundred years or so? Can we really stop temperatures rising? If we halt them at 1degree will we be ok? What if they go higher? If temperatures are rising why is the amount of Antarctic sea ice increasing? Are politicians best placed to take action?

    These are obviously questions which could have a dramatic impact upon a large proportion of the world's population - or they might not. I just don't want the debate to be stifled by the vocal majority.
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    (Original post by avengedabbie)
    I don't really know if this is the best place to post this but i really want to hear your opinions in preparation for my university interview next week! Do you really think it's happening? What do you think we need to do now? What do you think we need to do in the future?

    Thank you for your participation!
    Just a lot of hot air
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    https://xkcd.com/1321/
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    I think it's probably gonna kill us all in the end.
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    It exists and always has. Scaremongering and blaming everything on the climate change boogieman is ridiculous.

    Are we effecting it? maybe a little but look what do you want us to do go back to being primitives? Depopulate the world of humans?

    How about the billions of cows on the planet, I hear they create a lot of methane emissions.
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    It's happening and I don't doubt our greenhouse gas production is accelerating it, but even if we cut our emissions to nothing, the world would still warm slowly. We are still exiting an ice age, there will come a time where no ice on the poles in summer is normal (though naturally not for a very long time), we cannot easily fight that, and trying to might be damaging in other ways. We need to adapt.

    Fossil fuels wise we need to move away from them, and of course we will have to, because within a few centuries they really will start to run out.
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    I've seen discussions on here, in person and on TV where people of all creeds and colours discuss fossil fuels, renewable energy and oil like Global Warming isn't a thing. Some people, even just regular folk with no shares in a company, think burning away at our beautiful Planet is a sacrifice worth making for an improved economy.

    And if you try and point out that our Planet and its environment is more/just as important than/as money, you're instantly called a "treehugger" or something pathetic of that ilk. I don't think enough people take it seriously and that's concerning.
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    (Original post by Duncan2012)
    Is it happening? Yes. Is it manmade? Not proven. What do we need to do now? It can't hurt to reduce our reliance upon fossil fuels and energy in general while developing renewable energy technologies, grow fewer cattle, plant more trees, stop deforestation etc. What should we do in the future? Reduce population sizes (but many moral and ethical issues to resolve). Hope that's a useful starting point and good luck next week!
    Don't forget geo-engineering.
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    It is definitely happening, we need to be looking for a sustainable, renewable energy resource sooner rather than later, it seems like even though our fossil fuel reserves are diminishing, well only be worried when they're actually gone.
 
 
 
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