Friday, 23 December 2016

GREATEST THREAT TO MANKIND

19th Jan 2017 - BBC News - Temperature data for 2016 shows it is likely to have edged ahead of 2015 as the world's warmest year.
Data from Nasa and the UK Met Office shows temperatures were about 0.07 degrees Celsius above the 2015 mark.
Although the Met Office increase was within the margin of error, Nasa says that 2016 was the third year in a row to break the record.
The El Niño weather phenomenon played a role, say scientists, but the main factor was human emissions of CO2.
The latest conclusions won't come as a much of a shock to observers, as the likely outcome was trailed heavily towards the end of last year.
So warm was the early part of 2016 - influenced by a powerful El Niño - that some leading climate scientists were predicting as early as May that a new record was probable.

During an El Niño, a band of unusually warm ocean water develops in parts of the Pacific. The phenomenon affects the climate globally, disrupting weather patterns.
********

Today’s Guardian (22 DEC 2016) reports Obama’s ban on Arctic drilling, sea-ice meltdown in Arctic Russian ports, killer coal-fired smog poisoning 460 million Chinese, and Demented Donald ranting against Scottish wind-power. Will he insist on coal-powered cars? With CO2 at 400 parts per million (Royal Society, October 2016) it is no longer if, but when, the polar ice will melt. James Hansen, ex-Director of NASA calculates sea-level-rise of 64 metres (213 ft). My London novel, Out of the Depths, spells out the probable appalling consequences for humankind. It is the greatest and, I think, an immediate threat to civilisation; it will create 5 billion refugees from the coastal plains. Governments must act – now.

Joyeux Noel

Noel HODSON - Author
Sci-Fi & Socio-Economics
16 Brookside, OXFORD OX3 7PJ, UK
Tel 01865 760994 Cell 07713 681216

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Tuesday, 20 December 2016

MELTDOWN - COMING SOON TO A CITY NEAR YOU

Arctic temperatures are NOW, in December 2016, from 20C to 30C warmer than usual. 

The 3 km high ice-mountains on Greenland, Northern Canada, Northern Siberia, Northern Russia, around the Arctic Ocean - are melting. The permafrost is melting. The sea-ice is greatly reduced. The oceans are 1C warmer, which is a lot of extra heat.

The news from Antarctica is similar - though it is of course summer in the southern hemisphere; and there are fewer research stations on the south polar region to collect the data. Antarctica ice mountains are 5 km high. 

If and when all the polar ice melts, sea level will rise 200 to 300 feet (up to 97 metres). Except of course on coastlines where Donald Trump has built hotels and golf-courses - because he, employing the full powers of a USA-President-Elect, denies climate-change is happening. Everywhere else on Earth, the meltdown will increase sea-levels by metres (yards). 

At this stage, it doesn't matter a tinkers cuss who dunnit or didn't do it; whether it is man-made (anthropogenic) or sun-spot cycles or volcanic activity or divine intervention. It is happening and we 7 billion humans will have to adapt. 5 billion of us live on the coastal margins - by the sea and up to 100 feet above sea-level. Our farms, factories, fuel, transport and families will all be underwater. 

When? Science cannot give us an answer because (1) we haven't collected enough data and (2) there are too many variables of factors we, modern society, have never encountered before. How fast does an ice-cube melt in various different conditions. Try it - and take bets. My bet is it is coming far faster than science predicts. Buy an amphibious home or move uphill. But 5 billion refugees will call on you, however high you go.

How loudly do we need to shout these facts, this news, to the squabbling governments and populations of the world before they will take action? 

What will happen to me and my friends and enemies? I've answered this in novel form. Novels, which reflect the uncertain time-scale and scientific course of events;  and novels whose stories of families like ourselves, communicate the reality of what we all face, to the widest audience.

The first book OUT OF THE DEPTHS tells what happens, now, in London & New York (and the rest of the world) as sea-levels rise. I envisage disease, plagues as health-systems breakdown, wiping out 80% of us as we migrate to higher land. Read it as  a survival guide.

The second novel transports three of us from now, five hundred years into the future - to 2516 AD-After Global Warming - to a Utopian world of 11 billion civilised souls who function without money, want or strife. It is truly a good-read. I hope AD 2516 will act as a compass needle pointing to how we can arrive at a great future. 

Read the books - and then harass your governments. This is the most serious problem we have.

Happy Christmas. 

Noel Hodson


Saturday, 17 December 2016

ENEMY OF THE STATE


Reuters 17 Dec 2016:  - Russian President Vladimir Putin supervised his intelligence agencies' hacking of the U.S. presidential election and turned it from a general attempt to discredit American democracy to an effort to help Donald Trump, three U.S. officials said on Thursday.
U.S. intelligence agencies' conclusion that Russia tried to influence the election by hacking people and institutions, including Democratic Party bodies, has angered President-elect Trump, who says he won the Nov. 8 vote fairly. Russian officials have denied accusations of interference in the U.S. election.
Separately, a senior White House official said on Thursday that Putin was likely to have been aware of the cyber attacks but he fell short of accusing the Russian president.
"I don't think things happen in the Russian government of this consequence without Vladimir Putin knowing about it," Ben Rhodes, the White House's deputy national security adviser, told MSNBC. "When you're talking about a significant cyber intrusion like this, we're talking about the highest levels of government."
The U.S. officials - who have knowledge of intelligence information on the matter - said on the condition of anonymity that the hacking of U.S. political groups and figures had a more general focus at first.
"This began merely as an effort to show that American democracy is no more credible than Putin's version is," one of the officials said.
"It gradually evolved from that to publicizing (Hillary) Clinton's shortcomings and ignoring the products of hacking Republican institutions, which the Russians also did," the official said.
By the fall, the official said, it became an effort to help Trump's campaign because "Putin believed he would be much friendlier to Russia, especially on the matter of economic sanctions" than Democratic rival Clinton.
Democratic President Barack Obama said in an interview with National Public Radio that the United States will take action against Russia.
"I think there is no doubt that when any foreign government tries to impact the integrity of our elections ... we need to take action and we will," he said according to excerpts of the Thursday interview released by NPR.

Wednesday, 14 December 2016

CLIMATE RISKS - Mark Carney & Michael Bloomberg

MAR-A-LAGO - TRUMP'S SEASIDE FLORIDA HOME.
4 FEET HIGH. IS THERE A  DUMB BUYER?
The Guardian 14 DEC 2016: Bank of England chief joins with Michael Bloomberg calling for disclosure to help capital manage risks and seize opportunities in global warming fight.

The governor of the Bank of England has warned that the fight against climate change will be jeopardised unless companies with big carbon footprints come clean about their exposure to global warming risks.
Writing in today’s Guardian, Mark Carney says a new set of guidelines drawn up over the past year should be implemented so that investors can allocate capital to those companies with the best ideas to hit the target of keeping the rise in global temperature to less than 2C.
Carney, writing jointly with the former New York City mayor, Michael Bloomberg, said citizens, consumers, businesses, governments and international organisations were all taking action in response to extreme weather events.
“The challenge is that investors currently don’t have the information to respond to these developments,” they said. “This must change if financial markets are going to do what they do best: allocate capital to manage risks and seize new opportunities. Without the necessary information, market adjustments to climate change will be incomplete, late and potentially destabilising.”
READ MY GLOBAL-WARMING NOVELS (click covers in right hand margin).

Tuesday, 6 December 2016

BRIAN COX ON GLOBAL-WARMING AT THE ROYAL SOCIETY



















Scribbled Notes - not necessarily accurately expressing the panel's views:
There were about 600 people in the hall at Reading University, UK. 

My unanswered question: How long will it take for, say, Greenland's ice mountains to melt and slide into the sea? Physicists tell me that there are too many variables for science to make a reliable calculation of ice meltdown. BE VERY AFRAID

Prof Brian Cox - Chair
Prof Brian Hoskins (maths)
Prof Kate Jones (biodiversity)
Oliver Morton (The Economist magazine)
Prof Keith Shine (climatology)





CO2 is now 400.97 ppm. Average over last I million years was 300 ppm. (parts per million)
Last 200 years temp rise is 0.8C - proved to be due to humans

CO2 is 0.4% of atmosphere, which is 10,000 trillion molecules
One carbon atom uses/ generates 1 unit of energy to join the umbrella but blocks or locks in 100,000 units of energy.  100,000 : 1
Ocean is not mopping up CO2 as previously hoped.

INCREASE IS DEFINITELY FROM HUMAN ACTIVITY
Sea temperature is best guide
Old days, they drew up a bucket of water and stuck a thermometer in it.
Ships records go back 200 years.
Essential to correct/ harmonise old data-sets - e..g from Fahrenheit to Centigrade etc From wooden to iron buckets.

WILDLIFE
Spring is earlier
Autumn is later
Already 1/6th extinction of current species
Forecast 10 billion humans
Animals can Move, Expire or Evolve as planet warms
Will humans die off???

TIPPING POINT - not yet reached, still hope.
Greenland melting will take thousands of years yet. (I don't think so)
CO2 (greenhouse gas) persists for thousands of years

TARGET
+2C rise, measured since pre-industrial revolution (200 years)
Now we have +1C rise
2C should hold it at 400ppm
So...  it might stay under 2C

NO human extinction - but could be major die back.
More: HUMAN RACE - SURVIVAL

MOST VITAL ACTION - reduce CO2.

ENERGY
Now - we use 79% fossil fuels.
Target by 2030 is for 65% renewables

CLIMATE MODELS use worlds largest computers - getting more accurate.
Feedback of data makes for reliable Expert Systems - daily updates
Most effective counter measure is to increase cloud cover.

GEO-ENGINEERING IDEAS
Basically silly - vacuum out CO2, put  a sunshade in space; scatter particles in the upper atmosphere;
Unsafe, impractical, unpredictable.
Interfering with water, clouds, weather etc over other nations - could cause wars
The crop growing nitrogen cycle has been human geo-engineered and it works.
Bio-fuels are worse than useless - a crappy idea.
Solutions must be global.
Best - is solar power. Solar Soar Solar.

INDIVIDUALS - change your behaviour - home heat/cooling - travel
Most of all - lobby your governments for immediate action.
The UK has had a major influence on helping China go green.
BREXIT will internationally sideline the UK, which led the Paris talks.
Most Brexiteers are also climate-change-deniers - and vote for Trump.

CURRENT SYMPTOMS - are critical. Action this day.
Look at the data. Historic tables at e.g. England and Wales Precipitation Data.
Extreme weather is on the increase world-wide.
e..g Hurricane Mathew has 6 metre SLR surges. E.g. New Orleans floods
Single extreme events are up 40% in the last 40 years - caused by warmer seas.

PERSUADE GOVERNMENTS
Climate Change Act.
Only 27 MPs out of 650 have science degrees
BUT - Governments have cooperated to fix the Ozone holes over the Poles.
In 1988 Margaret Thatcher supported the Royal Society's work on global warming.

END - Prof Cox said "If this were a BBC programme I would have to provide Climate-Sceptic balance - but it isn't, so I won't" Cheers from the 600 audience.

(I sent in a question - How fast are the ice-caps melting. What is the timetable? - It wasn't tabled. Physicists tell me that no-one has yet figured out how to calculate it)

More: http://sci-fi-future-fact-fiction.blogspot.co.uk/2015/09/pope-president-600-scientists-meltdown.html

CARNEY - SHARE THE WEALTH

LETTER TO THE GUARDIAN 5 DEC 2016:

 I believe the common cause of angry populism against The Establishment; (Battered EU relieved at reprieve – Guardian 5 Dec 16) is the tacit rage of the 99.5% who continue to be paralyzed by the 0.5% - the global super-rich. Thomas Piketty’s CAPITAL tracks the relentless gouging of wealth from poor to rich, with $32 trillion (80 million jobs) frozen in offshore tax-havens – strangling economies. You report today a single, small example “MP seeks inquiry intoMourinho tax avoidance allegations”. Despite more than 150,000 tax-haven accounts being published by ICIJ (International Consortium of Investigative Journalists), by Christine Lagarde and others, including for example half-a-billion Papandreou dollars in HSBC Zurich; complicit tax-collectors and Treasuries won’t act. US and UK infrastructure visibly needs the $32 trillion; about $3 trillion belongs in the UK. “The People”, the angry, confused, misdirected mobs energised by Trump & Farage, are shifting into revolutionary, even civil-war mode. To avoid violence and chaos, the $32 trillion must be repatriated and wealth must be shared, now.         

Noel HODSON - Author
Sci-Fi & Socio-Economics


by Lucy Meakin
 
·        

World faces first lost decade since 1860s, BOE Governor says
·         He defends low interest rates as a consquence of global force


Mark Carney launched a defense of globalization and set out a manifesto for central bankers and governments to boost growth and make the world economy more equal.
The Bank of England Governor said they must acknowledge that gains from trade and technology haven’t been felt by all, improve the balance of monetary and fiscal policy, and move to a more inclusive model where “everyone has a stake in globalization.”
WANT & IGNORANCE
A CHRISTMAS CAROL
Carney’s speech in Liverpool, England, comes amid rising disquiet about the state of the world economy and political status quo that helped propel Donald Trump to victory in the U.S. presidential election and boost support for the U.K.’s exit from the European Union.
Trump isn’t right to favor more protectionist policies in response to globalization, Carney said in a television interview broadcast after his speech. The answer is to “redistribute some of the benefits of trade” and ensure that workers are able to acquire new skills.
“Weak income growth has focused growing attention on its distribution,” Carney said in the speech. “Inequalities which might have been tolerated during generalized prosperity are felt more acutely when economies stagnate.”
Describing the world as facing the “first lost decade since the 1860s,” the BOE governor said public support for open markets is under threat and rejecting them would be a “tragedy, but is a possibility.”

Policy Defense

Carney also defended the central bank’s current policy stance. The BOE has faced criticism from politicians after officials took measures including cutting interest rates and expanding asset purchases in August to support the economy after Britain’s June vote to leave the EU.
“Low rates are not the caprice of central bankers, but rather the consequence of powerful global forces, including debt, demographics and distribution,” he said, adding that they helped to prevent a deeper economic downturn.
His comments weren’t all critical, and he voiced support for both U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May and Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond. He agreed with May’s assessment that companies have social responsibilities and praised Hammond’s first step to rebalance the economy in his Autumn Statement last month.