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SofthackleAugust 16th, 2007, 1:16 pm
Site Editor
Wellsville, NY

Posts: 540
Funny, but the current issue of the NY State Conservationist Magazine has a pretty good article in it about "Climate Change, and New York's Future". This is the August 2007 issue if anyone would care to read it.

Some interesting facts in the article:

The northeastern US shows the average temperature his risen 1.8 degrees over the last 100 years. Winter temperatures have risen even faster, as much as 4.4 degrees in the last 30 years.

Data from the last 30 years indicate that much of the northeast has already seen a change in the winter snow season. In The Adirondacks annual snowfall has decreased from 100 inches to 60 inches. Also, the period with snow on the ground in parts of NY has decreased as much as 20 days.

Lake Champlain now freezes over, on average, 11 days later than it did when records were started in the early 1800s. It also thaws earlier in the spring, and in 16 of the last 31 years it did not freeze over at all.

Spring flower bloom dates in the northeast are now, on average, 4 to 8 days erarlier than in the 1960s. Across NY State, the last frost is now eight days earlier than in the 1970s.

NY's fisheries could undergo significant change. Today, our marine waters are home to a seasonal mix of cold and warm/temperature species, and our fresh waters support thriving populations of coldwater fish like trout and salmon. In both fisheries, warming waters may tilt the balance toward warmwater species, diminishing the state's biodiversity.

It may also become too warm for traditional NY plants, such as the sugar maple tree. The maple syrup season decreased by two to four days in the last 30 years.

Higher sea level readings in NY harbor have increased 15 inches over 150 years ago. Some of this is due to geological forces, however the remainder comes from warming ocean water which expands as it warms and from the melting of glaciers and polar ice sheets.

So, Is something going on? As Jason has asked-is this natural? I don't know.

A good article, nonetheless.The article was written by two authors; Kristin Marcell who works for the DEC in their Hudson River Estuary Program on climate change. Also Art DeGaetano, a professor of Earth and Atmospheric Science at Cornell University. It's important to know who is writing the information.

Mark
"I have the highest respect for the skilled wet-fly fisherman, as he has mastered an art of very great difficulty." Edward R. Hewitt

Flymphs, Soft-hackles and Spiders: http://www.troutnut.com/libstudio/FS&S/index.html
WiflyfisherAugust 16th, 2007, 1:39 pm
Wisconsin

Posts: 649
P.S. Thanks, John - I try to get them thinking instead of just passively accepting, but for the most part their Playstationed brains resist at all costs.


Keep 'um thinking we don't need anymore lemmings.

John S.
https://WiFlyFisher.com
GeneAugust 16th, 2007, 2:01 pm
Posts: 107Gentelmen:

You can read my thoughts on global warming on the question and reply...on how they get off the water but may I at least post a few ideas here, many that are upsetting because they get into politics which seems to polarize and disturb everyone.

One of the most serious problems we have in this country which results in such skepticism on global warming is simply this: America is a scientifically illiterate nation. Yes, I know we win more Nobel Prizes than any other country but this has little to do with the populace at large. The illiteracy is played upon by the extreme Right-Wing in this country by the likes of Rush Limbaugh, William Kristol, Cheney and the Bush crime family and even sections of the Religious Right! It's 2007 and we are still fighting Galileo's Battles (separation of Church and State), and Darwin's Battles (Evolution). The rest of the industrialized world laughs at our insanity and we just don't care. We just wave the Flag!

The average American and journalist who are supposedly covering this stuff couldn't pass a 6th grade science test. There are hundreds of Right-Wing Think Tanks who receive tons of money from industry including Exxon, Dow, Dupont and others to blur the waters and disinform the public. There are some Left-Wing Think Tanks who reject scientific finds because they aren't politically correct!

It's hard to believe that people could be so gullible to believe someone who is supported by Exxon but they do! When this generation wakes up from the video games and Iphones they will find a world that resembles something between a MAD MAX Movie and Blade Runner and that world may be closer than anyone thinks!

It does not look good for our trout streams.

gene
aquatic and environmental scientist
www.flyfisher.com
Jmd123August 16th, 2007, 2:32 pm
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2545
Gene, as a professional scientist, I COULDN'T AGREE WITH YOU MORE!!!! I also hesitate to discuss politics on a site such as this, in case I anger someone who might just be a great fishing buddy. But there are loads of examples to back me up on this one.

The Bush administration has consistently tried to change scientific reporting to suit their political needs, especially when dealing with the energy industry. What else do you expect from two Texas oilmen? There have been constant accusations, many of which have been investigated and found to be true, of hand-picked Bush 43 officials editing the results of scientific studies to downplay risks to the environment. Heck, Bush's new head of the BLM wants to call all projects Categorical Exclusions - which means they have no significant impact to the environment and, therefore, the public DOES NOT get to comment on them (REQUIRED by the National Environmental Policy Act since 1969). Talk about manipulating results!

I am also extremely discouraged by the attitude of the general public to science. Last year I got into an email argument with a newspaper editorial commenter concerning the fact that he was certain that aspen forests - yes, ASPEN forests - contained more biodiversity than OLD-GROWTH forests. When I tried to explain why this is simply not true in polite and layperson-friendly scientific terms, he proceeded to attack my scientific credentials as "purely academic studies" and that walking around in the woods on his own time provided more "truth" than two decades of scientific FIELD experience and research. (I suspect I spend more time in the woods than he did, as I BOTH work AND play in the outdoors.) When I asked him to back up his so-called truths with evidence, he refused, saying that he was too busy to go look it all up. My interpretation: "I won't because I can't."

I really don't know how to deal with this attitude, other than to call these people the idiots (and worse) that they are. Basing actions on personal opinions (and desires) instead of scientific knowledge will be the death of US ALL - not to mention the fishes that we love!

Jonathon
No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
Jmd123August 16th, 2007, 2:48 pm
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2545
OK, one more comment on global warming. I am SICK and TIRED of people claiming that "we're too small to affect the great big Earth". So, here's my argument: let's detonate all of the currently existing nuclear weapons in the world and see what happens to the climate. (On second thought, let's NOT!) Think it will stay just the same? I didn't think so. Given that we could drastically alter our climate in a matter of hours, what is so difficult in realizing that we could GRADUALLY change our climate over a period of a few hundred years???

See also an article in the May 2005 Scientific American about early forest clearing and burning thousands of years ago in Europe and how it may have actually stopped AN ICE AGE that was expected from, as the nay-sayers like to say, climate "cycles". Come on, if we could do it BACK THEN, what's so hard to believe it's happening NOW (especially since deforestation is still happening on a massive scale)?

I have seen more than enough evidence - and I haven't even seen Al Gore's movie yet - to believe global warming is happening. I have to wonder sometimes: are the people who don't want to believe in global warming those that don't want to change their lifestyles to become more energy efficient? After all, they would have to give up all those big motorized toys...

There, I have said it!! Attack me if you will, but you had better believe that this scientist has some damned good reasons for what he believes.

Jonathon
No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
Jmd123August 16th, 2007, 6:42 pm
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2545
Davez, I must take issue with your assertion that much of science is biased. First of all, this runs completely against the whole premise of the scientific method, which is to find out the TRUTH whether you like it or not.

Second, I am a professional scientist, working as a Natural Resource Specialist for a top-notch, environmentally sensitive landscape architecture firm. I am indeed paid for my work, and the source of this funding is from our clients, who we are working for to help them acheive their goals. My job is to tell THE TRUTH!!! What good would it do me to bias my results? If I am caught giving false information about a job I worked on, I would be promptly FIRED and likely would have destroyed my own reputation. There goes a career that I love...On top of that, would I be helping the client by telling them what they want to hear? "Gee, I don't see any wetlands on this site! Go ahead and fill that low area over there with the willows in it..." Whereupon an agent of the Michigan Dept. of Environmental Quality would discover what had happened and would fine our client $25,000 A DAY until they restored the filled wetlands. They would promptly drop us as their consultant, and as a result I would be fired (and ruined my reputation). If I got overzealous and tried to protect areas that were NOT wetlands, just because I liked the trees or the wildflowers, by calling them wetlands, the client would get extrememly pissed and drop us. Whereupon I would get fired from a terrific job and would have destroyed my reputation...

Biasing my results would be bad for my company, our clients, and ultimately myself. Seems like some very compelling reasons to stick to the truth. As I said in another post, getting caught in a lie makes one look like the biggest dumbass in the world.

I can't say that this is true with all science (e.g., articles written for the tobacco indsutry with their money). I would be willing to bet that the vast majority, however, are not like this. If caught, I'm sure they would suffer the same fate as I.

Most respectfully,
Jonathon
No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
Jmd123August 16th, 2007, 6:54 pm
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2545
DMM, it doesn't help to compare those you don't agree with to paranoid megalomaniacs like Stalin. He slaughtered millions of his own people and sent millions more to forced labor camps in the hellish cold of Siberia. The dumbass almost LOST WWII because he killed too many of his own scientists! (Talk about an anti-science attitude!) Do you really think anyone involved in this should compared to HIM??? If so, why don't you just call them Taliban or accuse them of being in league with SATAN?? It reminds me of the Bushies who accuse anyone opposed to their idiotic war of "being soft on terrorism", "supporting terrorists", "giving aid and comfort to the enemy", being wimps, etc. Or you could just quote Ann Coulter and accuse them of TREASON. I believe she accused FDR of the very same. Oh, that's right, he was a DEMOCRAT!!

Name-calling not only does not help the situation, it underminds your credibility and generally makes one sound STUPID. As if resorting to dictators and terrorists are the only way you can make your point...I think you sound more intelligent than that.

Most respectfully,

Jonathon

P.S. Shawn, I have a few issues to discuss with you as well sometime in the near future...
No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
TroutnutAugust 17th, 2007, 1:22 am
Administrator
Bellevue, WA

Posts: 2727
I agree that some people here are too quick to assume scientists let their funders' agendas influence their results. I'm sure that happens and that many other sources of bias occasionally influence outcomes, but it's the rare exception, not the rule. Most scientists go into science because they're interested in truth, not money. Some can be bought, which is why you can find a minority of scientists to support any crazy position you want, but the mainstream consensus is usually formed by fairly un-biased people.
Jason Neuswanger, Ph.D.
Troutnut and salmonid ecologist
DavezAugust 17th, 2007, 4:38 am
Pennsylvania

Posts: 59
shawnny3, you reinforce my point.

jmd, geez, sorry to offend you. I'm glad your firm is honest and do what you are paid to do. I respect your noble stance to take the higher road and conduct your research without a predetermined bias. However, It does happen, (being bought or sold out). I have to find an article about major funding research projects for and against global warming. The numbers (in $$$$) were astounding.

its starting to get divided.... stay together guys...

Shawnny3August 17th, 2007, 7:36 am
Moderator
Pleasant Gap, PA

Posts: 1197
Jason, I think everyone brings a bias to their work (I could list my own biases pretty easily). In much of pure science, however, the answers we seek are usually not of immediate political importance, so it is easy to keep our biases from impacting our work. But when science interacts with society, especially on issues with great moral weight or great financial consequences, our personal biases and the biases of the organizations that pay us become quite formative.

At the risk of broadening the issue or offending someone (neither of which I am trying to do), let me speak to an overall us-vs.-them tone I've sensed in some of the replies on this thread. The two most twisted issues, I think, are probably environmental science and abortion (stem-cell research included, and probably the poorest understood area of the abortion debate). On the former issue, it is the right-wingers who ignore the science (as many on this forum have rightly stated), and on the latter it's the left-wing that does it (any argument on this issue, including the very Roe v. Wade transcripts, ends up pitting a conservative argument from science against a liberal argument from social expediency, which is why the arguments, like those in environmental science, never get anywhere). It's not as simple as the science-ignoring right doing battle with the science-loving left - everyone is prone to allowing their biases to alter their perceptions; there are just certain issues that bring out our biases out most strongly.

But that's OK, because even as a scientist I don't believe science is the be-all and end-all to every discussion - our biases can come from very important sources, including philosophy, ethnic background, personal experience, religion, and many more - all of which serve to guide our thinking in ways science cannot and should not. Someone who has had a loved one killed by a drunk driver has a perspective on drunk driving that goes beyond DOT statistics - that person has been biased in a way that might make them take action when the statisticians might not. Whether that's a good thing or bad thing depends on your perspective, but 'bias' is not always a bad word.

-Shawn
Jewelry-Quality Artistic Salmon Flies, by Shawn Davis
www.davisflydesigns.com
Shawnny3August 17th, 2007, 7:43 am
Moderator
Pleasant Gap, PA

Posts: 1197
Jonathon, with regard to maintaining neutrality in your job, the reasons you give for telling the truth are not scientific ones but legal ones. Laws are put in place to keep us from doing the things we might do if the laws were not in place. The very reason we need so many laws to govern the type of work you're in is BECAUSE scientists cannot be trusted to do the right thing on their own.

Also, there are ways scientists can alter their results without directly falsifying their data, as I'm sure you are aware. The simplest way to do this is to ignore data you don't like, and it need not be as obvious as "there are willow trees over there that everyone can see, but I'm going to say in my report that there are no willow trees." Rarely if ever do scientists report all their data, and their decisions as to which data not to report can be quite biased without drawing anyone's attention. I see my students ignore unfavorable data all the time and we have lots of discussions about it and they STILL do it. Their motivation is usually to get the "right" answer because they think I might dock their grade for their having bad results and they don't want to have to start the whole experiment again from scratch. Do you think professional scientists do the same thing for similar reasons, especially when starting the experiment over could cost them years of research and millions of dollars? I do. In fact, I know they do. And the more there is to gain or lose by doing it, the greater the pressure is to do it.

To bring this back to the topic at hand, there is a great deal of pressure (both political and financial) to report certain results about global warming and ignore others. I guarantee you that the results are biased. That doesn't mean they're all wrong, but to think that they're unbiased is just naive.

-Shawn
Jewelry-Quality Artistic Salmon Flies, by Shawn Davis
www.davisflydesigns.com
Jmd123August 17th, 2007, 7:44 am
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2545
Davez, no offense taken, no worries. Perhaps I misinterpreted your post as a generalization, and I am overly enthusiastic about my love of science. I won't argue with you that science can be bought and sold - in a free market capitalist system, ANYTHING can be bought and sold (including, most unfortunately, the politicians that make our laws). The global warming debate has gone beyond a fevered pitch because, if global warming is REAL after all, attempting to slow down and/or reverse it will force MAJOR changes in our society, particularly with regards to our sources and uses of energy. Any change this massive is going to be resisted by those who stand to lose the most from it - i.e., the fossil fuels industry. Why these folks are not out front with alternative energy sources is beyond me - if they were the first to get in, they would STILL control the energy supply and be making healthy profits, not to mention getting endless PR advantages from it. Global warming isn't the only reason to be reducing - and eventually eliminating - fossil fuel usage. Oil spills, damage to the Arctic, air pollution, dead miners (!!) or those dying of lung diseases, and dependence primarily on one main source of energy (especially if you have to deal with crazy, corrupt people to get it) are all bad for our country, and the world in general.

So, it's no wonder that people are paying to have their viewpoints and opinions proven in any way they can. I take the view that change is progress and necessary, unless you are going back to previous practices that were left behind because they weren't so good.

If I have offended anyone on this site, my humblest apologies to all. If one insults people, it makes it much harder to get them to listen to you and consider your point of view.

Jonathon
No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
MartinlfAugust 17th, 2007, 8:15 am
Moderator
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3173
Great comments by everyone. This thread contains more thoughtful comment than any other I've seen and another site had a very lengthy thread that was long on opinion and very short on facts. Yes, Mr. Gore's film does betray a certain agenda, and has some flaws--but compared to Mr. Bush's agenda and flawed decisions, it only makes me very sad that Florida didn't have better voting machines, or that the Supreme Court had ruled differently. But that's water over the damn. (Yes, I meant to spell it that way.) All that considered I still think Gore's film serves a purpose. Anything we can do to keep the earth less polluted is to our benefit. For example, where would we be if a trend to more solar-based energy, including more folks employing passive solar in home design, had been embraced years ago? A film like Gore's back them might have pushed us in that direction. And why not now? Yes, producing alternative energy sources does require the use of fossil fuels, but these sources go on producing energy long after the fossil fuels used to produce them are no longer being needed in relation to them. One would have to study the amount of fuel used to produce them in relation to the amount of fossil fuel they save over the long term to determine their effectiveness in reducing pollution. What troubles me with the naysayers on global warming is that it allows folks to say, "Well, there's nothing to be done, let's not even consider whether or not we should make changes. Gas up the big SUV and go."
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
Jmd123August 17th, 2007, 11:53 am
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2545
"Well, there's nothing to be done, let's not even consider whether or not we should make changes. Gas up the big SUV and go."

I coudn't have said it better myself - see my post above about people who refuse to change their lifestyles.

Jonathon

P.S. Those of you on this site who own SUVs, I will assume that you need them to get to your favorite fishing spots, which might happen to be pretty remote and down some rough roads. And probably for hauling heavy camping gear or getting supplies to the cabin in the woods. The folks that I am referring to are those who drive their SUVs (and oversized pick-ups) strictly IN THE CITY without ever wanting to get a scratch on it. I just love to see some tiny little woman get out of some monster truck that could house an African family of TEN. And no, I don't buy the safety argument - they are far more prone to roll-overs, take far longer to stop (especially on ice), and if that loaded semi hits you, honey, you're just as dead as the guy in that small, fuel-efficient car you just ran over. By the way, that guy is ME so keep your big piece of sh** off my a**!
No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
Shawnny3August 17th, 2007, 7:32 pm
Moderator
Pleasant Gap, PA

Posts: 1197
Nice points, Louis.

To speak to your question about solar panels and windmills:

I'm not sure about the industrial solar panels, but I know we just bought some for a solar car project we do with our students, and a panel about 2 square feet in size costs about $80 and produces enough energy to make some of the students' cars move at painfully low speeds (I don't know the actual wattage per typical day they generate, but I could find out once school starts). So it would take awhile before you'd get your $80 back, but at today's energy prices you'd probably recoup your investment before the thing died. You just wouldn't get much energy from it at a time - so you'd need a lot of batteries as well, and a traditional energy source to augment it. It would make a dent in your utility bill but certainly not pay for heating or cooling your home.

Like solar panels, windmills are quite costly and have to run a long time maintenance-free to justify the investment. An example: A few years ago a local EPA office decided to install a windmill, for which they were subsidized by a grant. The newspaper journalist reporting this asked them two critical questions: How much would it cost and how much would it lower their electric bill? The answers were that it cost $50,000 and would return $2000 per year. No wonder no one was lining up to buy a non-subsidized version - the thing would have to run 25 years maintenance-free just to pay for itself.

Geothermal pumps are another environmentally friendly technology that is (in my mind) much better than both solar and wind technologies. For one, there is absolutely no adverse environmental impact, and it also addresses the most costly energy sinks of all - heating and cooling. In a new home construction such a system (at around $15,000 for a 1,500 sq-ft home) would probably make good sense even at today's energy prices. I suspect this will become a pretty standard upgrade on new homes in coming years.

Now, government subsidy, while nice for getting technologies off the ground, gets us nowhere in the long run. Eventually any technology has to become self-sustaining economically. But here's the good part: As fossil fuel prices rise, the savings comes faster and faster. If the return on your $50,000 windmill is $2000 in 2005, then it might be $4000 in 2010. But if you wait until 2010 to build it, the cost of building it (using fossil-fuel energy and from oil-based raw materials) jumps to $100,000. So Louis is right - we are wise to invest in these technologies earlier rather than later. Same goes for any technology that lasts a long time after the initial investment (which is why I like geothermal so much - the plastic pipes last a long time).

That said, from an American perspective, any technology that replaces our need for oil is much better than a technology that replaces coal (which is, unfortunately, what all three of the above technologies do). We've got lots of coal in this country but almost no oil. That's why hydrogen cars are so attractive - cars run on oil, but hydrogen can be made by electrolyzing water, and electricity can be made from coal or any of the above technologies. If we rely on coal to make the hydrogen then we still haven't solved the CO2 problem (if CO2 is indeed the global warming culprit), but it's better than being enslaved to Iran.

-Shawn
Jewelry-Quality Artistic Salmon Flies, by Shawn Davis
www.davisflydesigns.com
TroutnutAugust 18th, 2007, 11:54 am
Administrator
Bellevue, WA

Posts: 2727
P.S. Those of you on this site who own SUVs, I will assume that you need them to get to your favorite fishing spots, which might happen to be pretty remote and down some rough roads. And probably for hauling heavy camping gear or getting supplies to the cabin in the woods. The folks that I am referring to are those who drive their SUVs (and oversized pick-ups) strictly IN THE CITY without ever wanting to get a scratch on it.


Not all SUVs are evil. My new V6 4WD RAV4 is rated for 28 mpg highway / 21 city, and it has about the same horse-power as the huge gas-guzzling Sequoia. The 4-cylinder model actually gets better gas mileage than the Camry sedan (30/24 vs 31/21) or the Highlander hybrid. It's big enough to sleep in the back, which I've been doing just about every weekend, and it's pretty nice off-road. It would be a pretty handy and responsible vehicle even for somebody living in the city.

Of course, it's a medium-small SUV, and what you wrote still applies to the tank-sized 15mpg gas guzzlers. I just have to object to lumping all SUVs in their category.
Jason Neuswanger, Ph.D.
Troutnut and salmonid ecologist
Jmd123August 18th, 2007, 12:58 pm
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2545
Jason, my apologies to you and your SUV. Still, you do back up my point by saying that you sleep in it "just about every weekend". That's what I call using your SUV to it's full potential!

By the way,I should mention what I myself drive. A Saturn SL-1 4-door, which averages 30 mpg (both city and highway combined - I use it to get to field sites for my work) and has gotten me up to and over 35 MPG on long road trips (e.g., northern Michigan). And I am afraid I am rather self-righteous about this, being in the environmental sciences and all. But hey, if you've got 5 kids to haul around (as does one of my colleagues at work) I sure wouldn't expect you to cram them into a little Saturn! I have a buddy up north who is a plumber, and he sure has a manly-sized pick-up - for hauling around tools, pipes, water heaters, etc. His wife drives her own small car.

My Saturn is actually big enough to do anything I want with it (except 4-wheeling - I'll hike in if the road is that bad). I can put my kayak on top of it, and my mountain bike on the back of it, AND my 10" reflecting telescope in the back seat, AND STILL have room for camping gear in the trunk!

Call me an "eco-freak" if you will, and I'll wear that badge proudly.

Jonathon :oD
No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
MartinlfAugust 18th, 2007, 4:06 pm
Moderator
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3173
Shawn, thank you for the thoughtful reply. I actually had been purposefully vague in my comments, aside from the specific mention of passive solar design for homes (not the same as solar panels) and noted that any technology that would move us from greenhouse gas emissions would be worth a cost/benefit analysis. One other consideration that goes back to your original analysis of Gore's movie (I thought of this heading up to the Delaware): Though Gore does seem to move from correlation to causality in his charts, his conclusions are actually a bit more sophisticated if one considers all the information presented in the film and how it fits together. If one only has simple correlation information inferring causality is fallacious. However, Gore presents much more than simple correlative information in his film. He actually provides a scientifically sound explanation about how greenhouse gases cause the atmosphere to trap more heat.

I do believe we agree on several things, though, and nuclear energy may be one of them. As much as nuclear waste troubles me, I believe it may be time to take another look at nuclear power. At least for a while.
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
Shawnny3August 18th, 2007, 6:28 pm
Moderator
Pleasant Gap, PA

Posts: 1197
No, Louis, you're right - Gore presents much more evidence than just correlative data, and I certainly oversimplified his argument. I was actually quite impressed with his film. But just presenting a logical argument doesn't mean it is a correct one, which is why I started to become more disillusioned by his film after I began investigating it further.

For example, it is well known that methane gas (the chief component in natural gas) is about 20 times more powerful than CO2 as a greenhouse gas. The explosion of the number of farm ruminants in the world corresponding with the population explosion is likely to have raised the amount of methane in our atmosphere over the past few hundred years, so maybe that's causing the warming. Not to mention all the methane we lose when we mine it out of the ground (it being about half as dense as air and thus escaping quite easily) or use it in our daily lives (think about that every time you light your stove). I've even heard global warming alarmists warning us that as the arctic ice melts it will release tremendous amounts of trapped methane, accelerating global warming at an even faster rate. So why is it so strange to think that methane might be the major player in the first place? Why aren't we starting campaigns to slaughter all the cows on the planet? (The folks in India wouldn't much like that one.) To make my point: What I'm saying here is pretty logical, but it could be completely wrong. And the same could be said for Mr. Gore.

In my opinion, there are just too many other likely correlated variables for us to point our finger confidently at CO2. In fact, I've never seen a scientific issue more complicated than this one, and not only are we trying to interpret existing data from a host of widely varying fields, but we're trying to use it to do what science usually hates us to do - predict the future. But what do I know? I'm no expert. But I don't trust the experts, either, and I wish they'd give us something a little more substantial than, "In my expert opinion, global warming is going to kill all the polar bears, and it's all the fault of the evil oil companies I buy products from every week." Or maybe we'd just be too dumb to understand their data. But I'd sure like to see it anyway. I'm just not seeing the kind of controlled data that would constitute to me conclusive evidence. I'm kind of stubborn that way - too many years in the hard sciences, I guess, where even the Laws of Newton are not immune to being proven wrong if the right frizzy-haired gentleman comes along.

-Shawn
Jewelry-Quality Artistic Salmon Flies, by Shawn Davis
www.davisflydesigns.com
Shawnny3August 18th, 2007, 6:35 pm
Moderator
Pleasant Gap, PA

Posts: 1197
I like Pat McManus's definition of a good hunting and fishing vehicle: "Any vehicle that is not yours."

My favorite fishing car was my '86 Civic. I took that thing places that would scare the lugnuts off a Hummer, and it still looked good enough that it got me from my first date to my first wife without a problem. All you need for fishing, in my opinion, is a front-wheel drive beater that has decent tires. I've heard the 4WD Subaru wagon is a monster off-road (that's what I thought Jason's car was the first time I saw it). And maybe the Camrys ('Camries'?) are getting worse mileage these days, because my 1990 version just got me 38 mpg on a trip last week. I love those Japanese cars, except for all the rust (the only reason I've had to retire the three cars I've ever owned). Sadly, no amount of ingenuity can overcome the crappiness of Japanese steel.

-Shawn
Jewelry-Quality Artistic Salmon Flies, by Shawn Davis
www.davisflydesigns.com
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