April 23, 2012

James Lovelock thinks #Gaia ain't warming so much

James Lovelock, famed proponent of planet Earth as Gaia, a living organism of sorts in its own right, has said, in essence, that he's a global warming confuse-nik.

He said he's not a denier, but, he's clearly all over the map otherwise.

He says warming has slowed down since the change of the millennium.
He says oceans could so moderate climate that we could still have "an ice age" out of climate change.
He says particulate pollution could lead to cooling.
And various other nuttery.

On warming, he ignores the blistering spring 2012, which wasn't all global warming but was certainly influenced by it. Also, he is apparently ignorant of the fact that 2005, NOT 1998, contra continuing claims by deniers, was the warmest year on record, as well as this:
“All 11 years of the 21st century so far (2001-2011) rank among the 13 warmest in the 132-year period of record. Only one year during the 20th century, 1998, was warmer than 2011,” NOAA said.
Of course, while the Gaia hypothesis was inspired intuition, Lovelock's not struck me overall as a brilliant scientist, or a thorough one. So, mistake No. 1 isn't surprising.

The oceans? No, we're not perfect in our knowledge ... and there are worries of regional cooling in cases such as Greenland having glacier dissolution severe enough to break up the Atlantic conveyor belt and disrupt the Gulf Stream. (I think they're overrated fears, but they're there.) That said, we learn more about oceanic effects all the time, including how much or how little additional CO2 it can readily hold.

Particulate pollution? It's being lessened in the developed world. It's unlikely China and India will more than offset it by too much. Besides, China knows, warming aside, it's got a horrible, and growing, pollution problem. And, climate scientists have already calculated its impacts.

I always thought Lovelock was a diamond in the rough. Now I see how rough his rough is.

And, of course, even if he's not a denialist, he's now officially a "tool" for  those who are.

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