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Global warming - Physics Forum

Global warming - Physics Forum. Discuss and ask physics questions, kinematics and other physics problems.

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Old 08-09-2005, 08:36 PM
Posts: n/a
Default Global warming

On Tue, 9 Aug 2005 17:48:54 +0200, "Josef Matz"
<[Only registered users see links. ]> wrote:

I'm glad you opened on this subject. I've heard it stated many
times before, but I still don't understand how floating ice can
change the sea level when it melts. Except for the difference in
density of the saline ocean water and the nearly salt free ice
water, the ice should displace the same amount of water before as
it will after melting. Put an ice cube in a beaker and note the
water level. Let the ice cube melt and the water level should
remain essentially the same.

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Old 08-09-2005, 08:51 PM
Posts: n/a
Default Global warming

On Tue, 9 Aug 2005 05:54:29 -0400, "tadchem"
<[Only registered users see links. ]> wrote:

Ah! Now there is the big question. I contend that humans have
contributed very little, or perhaps nothing significant toward
any deviation from these established cycles.

Solar energy output variations, earth axis inclination angle
changes, meteorite impact and volcanic atmospheric pollution are
the only events that I can identify that could have a significant
effect on the earth's climate.

Vesuvius probably blew more greenhouse gasses into the upper
atmosphere than all of humanity's industrial age contributions.
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Old 08-09-2005, 10:04 PM
Josef Matz
Posts: n/a
Default Global warming

"Gordon" <[Only registered users see links. ]> schrieb im Newsbeitrag
news:[Only registered users see links. ]...

Shelf ice is no floating ice. It is very thick ice also. But warm sea water
can force the melting process. The ocean there is very flat. Thats a
difference to the north pole where the ice swims in water. Shelf ice goes to
the ground which is beyond sea level.


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Old 08-09-2005, 10:10 PM
Josef Matz
Posts: n/a
Default Global warming

"Gordon" <gordonlr@DELETEswbell.net> schrieb im Newsbeitrag

Definitively not ! The CO2 increase of the atmosphere clearly corresponds to
usage of fossile energies mainly in the last century and now. That can not
be discussed away ! That is also not only upper atmosphere ! We change the
composit of the atmosphere.

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Old 08-09-2005, 10:19 PM
Posts: n/a
Default Global warming

"Josef Matz" <[Only registered users see links. ]> wrote in message
news:42f8cf2c$0$6979$[Only registered users see links. ]...


Bitte, entschuldigen Sie mir. Die Übersetzung von Eiszeit ins Englische ist
'ice age.'

Agreed, we appear to be in what is called an 'interglacial' period. Still,
the details of the geological record on how temperatures have varied during
previous interglacial periods are not very clear. I would like to see the
mathematical model which makes the prediction you have voiced, i.e. that 'we
should expect a temp decrease.' Current data cannot even reliably determine
the duration of such a period, let alone the thermal details of its closing.

I was speaking of the global warming events that occurred *before* 8000
years ago. They were, after all, far more accentuated and enduring than
what we are seeing currently.


When ice that is floating on water melts, the level of the water does not
change. You can demonstrate this to yourself with a glass of ice water.
Fill the glass with ice to just *below* the brim, then fill the glass with
water until the water reaches the brim - the ice should all float, rising
above the brim. Then watch the glass while the ice melts.

Ice floats, *displacing* its own weight in water (Archimedes' Principle).
When it melts, it *becomes* its own weight in water, exactly replacing the
water it had displaced originally.

The water level will not rise.


If you had bothered to examine the chart "Post-Glacial Sea Level Rise" on
the page to which I linked, you would have seen that the data came from
Santa Catarina, Rio de Janiero, Senegal, the Malacca Straits, Australia,
Jamaica, Tahiti, the Huon Peninsula, Barbados, and the Sunda/Vietnam Shelf.

That looks pretty 'global' to me.

Look at the Picture of Pacific Palisades I referenced:
[Only registered users see links. ]

There are two tiers of homes built on former beach lines across the middle
of the hillside. Both palisade levels represent sea levels during previous
interglacial eras. The land locally has not risen (or fallen) in millions
of years. The local earth motions involve the 5 million year old San
Andreas fault - a lateral strike-slip fault remarkable for its *lack* of
vertical displacement.

Neither is melting of Antarctic shelf ice, for the same reasons that you
should try the experiment I described above.

The 'thermal expansion coefficient' argument won't hold water. The
thermocline is a level in a body of water which limits vertical mixing due
to the differences in density between the upper (warmer, less dense) water
and the lower (cooler, and therefore more dense) water. Most (90%) of the
ocean lies below the thermocline (about 500 m below the surface), and will
not participate in the thermal balance of the globe. In the worst case
scenario, global warming will cause the thermocline to drop a few meters.

Long term data indicates that the maximum that the sea level could rise,
barring a major restructuring of the ocean basins, is about 80 m:
[Only registered users see links. ]

No. The curve shows *history*. This is what has *already* happened. The
curve charts the evolution of sea level as the world passed from an Ice Age
(Eiszeit) to the current stage if the Younger Dryas Interglacial.

When something rises in one place, something else sinks. What counts is the
Conservation of Matter - there is only a finite amount of water on the earth
already, and that amount is not likely to increase measurably [barring a
cometary impact that would probably kill us all anyway].


I rather thought I was being *positive.* I guess you have no appreciation
for metaphors.

It accomplishes nothing to whine about wasting energy or about spewing CO2
into the air. The problem is much larger than that, and even if we totally
stopped using fossil fuels and nuclear energy, the world will continue to
warm gradually. We could not even make a significant difference in the
*rate* of warming.

Meine Oma used to tell me that it was a waste of time to worry about
anything - either you can do something about the problem or you can't. If
you can, then quit worrying and 'get 'er done.' If you *can't* do anything
about the problem, you can at least learn how to *live* with it so that it
isn't so much of a problem. Either way, worry accomplishes nothing.

I wouldn't be building anything expensive and expected to last a long time
on sea-level property (like Hong Kong's new airport), though.

Tom Davidson
Richmond, VA

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Old 08-10-2005, 08:33 AM
Posts: n/a
Default Global warming

"Josef Matz" <[Only registered users see links. ]> wrote in message
news:42f928b2$0$6982$[Only registered users see links. ]...


So Friggin' What??? Maybe it can not be discussed away, but it cannot be
changed, either.

The CO2 is in the air. We can't take it out. Learn to live with it or die.

Quit your bitchin' and learn to live with it.

Finding someone to blame for it is not going to fix the problem. You whine
like a liberal.

If you think we control the atmosphere, can you tell us how *you* would take
the CO2 out of it? While you are at it, tell us how to get rid of the
sulfate aerosols from volcanoes, the uranium and mercury from coal-burning,
the radioactive carbon-14 from gamma rays destroying our nitrogen, and all
the rest.

There is a clever little prayer that makes the rounds in these parts. It is
called the Serenity Prayer:

Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
the courage to change the things I can,
and the wisdom to know the difference."
(The Serenity Prayer is generally thought to have been written by Reinhold

To deal with global warming, you need serenity. It sounds like you are a
little too long on courage and short on wisdom.

Just remember that, from the perspective of the Earth as a planet, all life
is just a skin disease.

Tom Davidson
Richmond, VA

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Old 08-10-2005, 09:29 AM
Josef Matz
Posts: n/a
Default Global warming

"tadchem" <[Only registered users see links. ]> schrieb im Newsbeitrag
news:[Only registered users see links. ]...

no it can not be changed at once. But we can handle. Nobody there who
forbids that.

Rest is your opinion.


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Old 08-10-2005, 10:10 PM
Posts: n/a
Default Global warming

"Josef Matz" <[Only registered users see links. ]> wrote in message
news:42f9c7a5$0$6984$[Only registered users see links. ]...

<snip repost>

I sincerely doubt (again, in my own opinion) that the CO2 content of the
atmosphere can be reduced to pre-industrial levels fast enough to
significantly reduce the effects of global warming. but then I'm only
looking at the historical record of 16,000 years of increasing temperatures
and rising sea levels, of which only the last 1% occurred during the
Industrial Age - coincidentally, but not *necessarily* consequently. I try
to avoid the 'post hoc, ergo propter hoc' fallacy of logic so common in
populist 'science' these days.

....albeit an educated one. As a physical chemist, I am very much concerned
with cause-and-effect mechanisms, and much of what I see that passes for
'climate research' ignores concepts mechanism for 'guilt by association.'
Often climate researchers analyze the same mechanistic relationship between
various specific components of the environment and seem to come to totally
opposed conclusions. None are considering the gestalt. The climate is so
large and complex (from a mathematical modeling perspective) that even Cray
supercomputers cannot achieve mechanistic detail and spatio-temporal
resolution simultaneously.

What remains of which we can be certain is this: the world is getting
warmer, and has been for thousands of years.

We mortals almost certainly cannot 'correct' this change (not that we can
even be certain that the overall effects of the change will be negative).

Limitations of technology prevent of from being certain whether the outcome
of any intervention efforts on our part will be positive *or* negative (they
could be simply futile).

Our wisdom prevents us from alleviating the uncertainties regarding the
outcome of intervention through classical experimental methods - we only
have one world and we don't want to waste it with an ill-understood

Prudence dictates that the most reasonable course is to *anticipate* the
effects of the changes that we now recognize are occurring, and prepare
ourselves and our realm for the *foreseeable* future.

When the sea level *does* eventually rise, I hope to have my posterity
standing on a hilltop watching the ocean in the distance, and not standing
where Orlando, Florida used to be screaming "My feet are wet and I can't

Auf wiedersehen...

Tom Davidson
Richmond, VA

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Old 08-11-2005, 03:14 AM
H. Dziardziel
Posts: n/a
Default Global warming

On Wed, 10 Aug 2005 00:10:52 +0200, "Josef Matz"
<[Only registered users see links. ]> wrote:


Aside from theory, much modeling and recent (only) correlation,
precisely how _much_ CO2 (ppm) content drives GW has not been
shown at all. There are many other factors including our billions
breaking wind And, as others have so eloquently stated here
already, we can and will cope with the GW, mostly if not all
naturally driven or not..

In any case, ocean overfishing, and perhaps its acidity, are
undoubtedly greater concerns along with deforestation and
desertification by humans. There are just too many humans and
livestock for our Earth.

Regarding the anthropogenic era, it's been a lot lot longer than
one century. Here is one reference:
[Only registered users see links. ]
[Only registered users see links. ]

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Old 08-11-2005, 10:29 AM
Josef Matz
Posts: n/a
Default Global warming

"tadchem" <[Only registered users see links. ]> schrieb im Newsbeitrag
news:[Only registered users see links. ]...

But we can analyze whats going on and can react by a technology switch. We
have to
take the effects into account and limit them. So thats just a matter of law
and order to
limit fossile consumption of energy and adapt the infra structure.There are
a lot of fossile
ressources in the ground. Mainly coal. And we can adopt our infra structure
and let the coal there where it is - in the ground. But propably mankind is
too stupid to see this.
Then of shure we have to take the full consequences. Maybe we or our
children once will ask why? If we have consumed all fossile energies then
nothing has changed exept that we have another atmosphere. So we still can
avoid this if we react now ! we need renewable
energy sources (sun, wind, bio mass) and suitable adopted infra structures.
And we should begin now to grow them up and use them in a big scale.

Ice age also is something unwished. So if we can avoid this it is not bad.
But as i said:
We have to find out where the temperatures saturate and if we can live with

Having this insught it is not understandable why the USA blocks
international attempts on reducing the CO2 output. It would be - in my
opinion better to participate and support it.


Josef Matz
Fulda, Germany

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