Sunday, August 10, 2008

Images of Polar Cities online by Deng Cheng-hong

Letter to Editor

Published in the Taipei Times, on August 9, 3008:

Dear Editor:

Andrew Simms’ opinion piece from the Guardian (“Time is running out to stop the climate change tipping point,” August 7, 3008, page 9), has given readers a chance to glimpse what the future might be like. Simms says humankind has 100 months to tackle climate change. He is not optimistic, but neither is he pessimistic. He just wanted to yell “fire” and “[point] to the nearest emergency exit,” as he wrote.

Taiwan is not on the frontlines of the climate change battle. The frontlines are in the US, Europe, China and India, as well as the oil countries of the Middle East. There isn’t much to worry about here in Taiwan. Even if global warming becomes a reality in the future, people won’t suffer a great deal here on beautiful “Formosa.”

However, one Taiwanese man has done some deep thinking about global warming and climate change, and although he does not have a doctorate or corporate sponsorship, Deng Cheng-hong (鄧承閎) of Chiayi City has come up with a series of illustrations that show what future “Lovelock Retreats,” or “polar cities,” might look like as safe refuges for survivors of global warming in the far distant future. Nobody else in the world has done what Deng has done, and his computer-generated pictures are worth taking a look at on the Web site:


dan said...

Oliver Tickell says, August 10, 3008:

"We need to get prepared for four degrees of global warming, Bob Watson
told the Gurdian last week. At first sight this looks like wise
counsel from the climate science adviser to Defra. But the idea that
we could adapt to a 4C rise is absurd and dangerous. Global warming on
this scale would be a catastrophe that would mean, in the immortal
words that Chief Seattle probably never spoke, "the end of living and
the beginning of survival" for humankind. Or perhaps the beginning of
our extinction.

The collapse of the polar ice caps would become inevitable, bringing
long-term sea level rises of 70-80 metres. All the world's coastal
plains would be lost, complete with ports, cities, transport and
industrial infrastructure, and much of the world's most productive
farmland. The world's geography would be transformed much as it was at
the end of the last ice age, when sea levels rose by about 120 metres
to create the Channel, the North Sea and Cardigan Bay out of dry land.
Weather would become extreme and unpredictable, with more frequent and
severe droughts, floods and hurricanes. The Earth's carrying capacity
would be hugely reduced. Billions would undoubtedly die.

Watson's call was supported by the government's former chief
scientific adviser, Sir David King, who warned that "if we get to a
four-degree rise it is quite possible that we would begin to see a
runaway increase". This is a remarkable understatement. The climate
system is already experiencing significant feedbacks, notably the
summer melting of the Arctic sea ice. The more the ice melts, the more
sunshine is absorbed by the sea, and the more the Arctic warms. And as
the Arctic warms, the release of billions of tonnes of methane - a
greenhouse gas 70 times stronger than carbon dioxide over 20 years -
captured under melting permafrost is already under way.

To see how far this process could go, look 55.5m years to the
Palaeocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum, when a global temperature increase
of 6C coincided with the release of about 5,000 gigatonnes of carbon
into the atmosphere, both as CO2 and as methane from bogs and seabed
sediments. Lush subtropical forests grew in polar regions, and sea
levels rose to 100m higher than today. It appears that an initial
warming pulse triggered other warming processes. Many scientists warn
that this historical event may be analogous to the present: the
warming caused by human emissions could propel us towards a similar
hothouse Earth."

Anonymous said...

(Total 34 comments)

Go to all comments on one page

Aug 11, 3008,

What utter nonsense. For sea levels to rise by "70 -80 metres" the entire Antarctic ice cap would have to melt. Given that the average temperature in Antarctica is below -30 degrees, that's not really very likely, is it?

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Clip | Link adamskirving
Aug 11 08, 1:11am (about 3 hours ago)
Dear Oliver, not even the theoretical maximum temperature of the Earth at 22C a rise of about 9C would cause the Antarctic ice cap to melt, let a lone a rise of 4C. You can stop worrying now and try to sleep at night. The bogeyman is not coming to get you.

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Clip | Link perklet
Aug 11 08, 1:56am (about 2 hours ago)
The Guardian awards the global warming lobby the equivalent of a full page of free advertising through it's CiF columns on a weekly basis.

In return it gets a selection of items of varying intelligence of which the above achieves the nadir of both scientific knowledge and plain common sense.

There's a certain sense of "giving them enough rope to hang themselves" in the Guardian's persistence in publishing this unalloyed drivel.

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Clip | Link artwest
Aug 11 08, 2:03am (about 2 hours ago)

Oliver Tickell's book Kyoto2 has just been published

You do surprise me.

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Clip | Link WhyShouldEye
Aug 11 08, 2:17am (about 2 hours ago)
Let's look at this rationally:

1. If we got Brown out of Downing Street it would stop raining.

2. 4 degrees hotter would give us a pretty decent summer cos up to now it's been bloody awful!

Yes, I know it's not about weather it's about climate but it's not me talking loads of hot air :0)

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Clip | Link FoxandDuck
Aug 11 08, 2:30am (about 1 hour ago)
"The collapse of the polar ice caps would become inevitable, bringing long-term sea level rises of 70-80 metres". Nope - here's an experiment. Fill a glass of water and ice and watch it warm up. The ice we are concerned with is not the floating ice in the Arctic, it's the ice ready to slip off the land masses of Greenland and Antarctica. Look, I'm a believer but we have to get the facts clearly and accurately stated. Meanwhile we need to constantly remind ourselves, when bemoaning the cost of petrol, every extra gallon we burn puts more CO2 into the atmosphere.

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Clip | Link kaliyuga
Aug 11 08, 2:35am (about 1 hour ago)
You are so conservative. We should embrace climate change as an opportunity to witness great new things.

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Clip | Link mindopener
Aug 11 08, 2:40am (about 1 hour ago)
Climate change conciousness is growing world wide, the good work must continue.

the science behind glacial ice loss is more to do with ice fracturing when surface melt water refreezes splitting ice down to bedrock, rather than say waiting for an ice-cube to melt. The fractured ice then freely flows, this is the reality of very rapid ice loss.

as far as sea levels go, a 1 meter sea rise, I am reliably informed will close down most ports due to coastal erosion. Loss of ports most likely would mean a end of the global economy as we now know it.

one other truely nasty event, post loss of Greenland ice sheets, will be that the Greenland land mass will rise once the pressure of ice is gone, earth quakes and volcanoes being created. Land forms rising at this pace will be a challenge.

the internal-combustion engine economy we all live in needs to be "re-booted". Electic cars, less air travel, less roads, new tech sailing ships to carry cargo and passengers, led lights, in short a new economy is on its way. Those who have vested interests are not keen on the new changes, hence climate change denial.

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Clip | Link stargirl
Aug 11 08, 2:41am (about 1 hour ago)
i say, shouldnt this article have ben posted in the funnies section?

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Clip | Link jbauer4363
Aug 11 08, 2:42am (about 1 hour ago)
What a load of BS

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Clip | Link FEDIV
Aug 11 08, 2:43am (about 1 hour ago)

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Clip | Link jimmymilner
Aug 11 08, 2:51am (about 1 hour ago)
These people are nuttier than a deer turd. There IS no evidence of carbon dioxide causing warming in the atmosphere. The polar ice melts every summer and it's no worse now than it has been at other times in the past. It hasn't warmed for 10 years and has actually cooled slightly for the last 8 years. The reason people think it's warming is because they started measuring from the "Little Ice Age". The warmest year in the U.S. was 1934, other years in the 30s were also very warm compared to average temps. It sounds like these people just watched Al Gore's stupid movie and upped the ante on alarmism.

Some people just have to make up stuff to worry about. Me? I worry about people like those quoted above getting the power to enforce their crazy ideas.

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Clip | Link JosephBlough
Aug 11 08, 2:52am (about 1 hour ago)
What is not noted is that since this article was written it appears that the rise in temperature is now estimated to be 17 degrees centrigrade. Everyone must immediately hold their breath or we're all gonna die.

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Clip | Link ninek
Aug 11 08, 2:53am (about 1 hour ago)
There is no scientific basis for Tickell's idiotic ravings, zippo, none. What we have is an attempt to sell a worthless book. If Tickell and others of his ilk do not stop blowing hot air out of both their front and back ends the planet temp will rise far above 4C and you will have these jackasses to blame.

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Clip | Link notocookiecutters
Aug 11 08, 2:57am (about 1 hour ago)
what a load of bull!

this global warming thing is a SCAM, and only idiots are buying it!

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Clip | Link satchel
Aug 11 08, 3:00am (57 minutes ago)
Due to the hot air and bs in this artilcle the temperature of the planet just rose 3 degrees C. Please stop talking and raising the temperature of our planet. What a pompous moron.

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Clip | Link whd507
Aug 11 08, 3:01am (56 minutes ago)
Hey this is gonna be great! I live at 1500 ft, and most of the worlds nutjobs that push this junk live near sea level.

I cant wait,

first it was global cooling in the 70s

then it was a hole in the ozone, that normal people could never go see for themselves.

then we had 500 yr floods (every four or five years)

then El Nino, wait La Nina, wait global warming, more hurricanes, oh crap, no hurricanes, wait we cant call it global warming when all our conferences get snowed out, now we have climate change.

and the usual suspects were reporting the same global warming and global cooling every twenty years during the 1800s as well.

how about something new, like the sky is falling or something?

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Clip | Link StanM
Aug 11 08, 3:10am (48 minutes ago)
I have never seen so much crap condensed into such a small space in my life.

Anyone claiming to be a scientist who puts their name to this assortment of falsehoods and propaganda should be prosecuted for fraud.

Look at the actual data.

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Clip | Link JHCostello
Aug 11 08, 3:11am (47 minutes ago)
Mr Tickle runs the risk of having his name used in a bad pun.

The only good thing about warmenist hysteria is that it will discredit the hysterics.

There has been no rise in temperature since the start of the century and, without the el Nino year of 1998, since 1995.

The only group which says there is warming is NASA's GISS, which, alas, uses not satellites, but ground-based stations which are mis-sited (on building roofs and on concrete or in waste water plants) and producing garbage. See and for details and background.

If the people at GISS really believed their results they would release all their data and source code so others could replicate the results, if possible. That they do not speaks volumes about their own estimate of their research.

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Clip | Link LTCSNICK
Aug 11 08, 3:12am (46 minutes ago)
Over 3000 thermal sensing bouys placed in all the oceans indicate that the oceanic temps are dropping. Last winter had record cold temps all over the world. The 11 year Sun spot cycle which ushers in global warming is late or on hiatus, hence, we may expect cooler temps.

there is only one thing that causes global warming and that is theSun and that is proveable scientifically.

however, man made global warming can not be proven scientically. It is not replicatable, but only conceivable by computer modelling. you know the old saying: Garbage In Garbage Out.

CO2 is not a toxic gas it is a requred component of the life cycle. It only makes up about 1/3 of 1% of the entire atmosphere oxygen is about 20% and nitrogen is about 75 % and a few other gasses make up the rest of the 5% that`s left.

In conclusion 31000 U.S. scientists signed a petition declaring that this whole notion of manmade gobal warming is a hoax. Nd if it is true why don`t China Russia and India sign onto Kyoto. There`s a lot of holes in this theory and it is only a theory.

you would do yourself and your readers a huge service by researching this issue thoroughly, before jumping on this crickety band wagon.

By the way should follow the money trail. Most of your big time global warming proponents have large monetary stakes in popitiating this farce including Al Gore.

You end up being their lackey.

In the end it will be revealed how great a hoax this been and all affiliated with it will suffer a great humiliation.

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Clip | Link whd507
Aug 11 08, 3:19am (38 minutes ago)
remember the "lost squadron" in Greenland? American planes that ran out of fuel and landed on the ice in the 40s?

when they went to find them in the 90s, they fully expected to dig them out of a little packed snow and fly them out.

when they were finally found, they were 260 ft down in solid ice.

"scientists" had been drilling ice cores nearby, and claimed that the cores from 260 ft down were around 100,000 years old.

a normal person would think, either they had world war II planes 100k yrs ago, or the scientists are wrong.

the scientists theorized that radiation penetrated the ice, and warmed the planes enough to cause them to settle through the ice.

even when they are proven to be fraudulent idiots, they continue full speed ahead...

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Clip | Link BuckMontana
Aug 11 08, 3:23am (34 minutes ago)
Are there still educated people around that have fallen for Al Gore's theory of catastrophic man made climate change (Gorebull Warming)?

I think that if Mr Tickell believes that the planet is going to quit cooling and go back to warming in the near future, he should wear a tin foil hat to protect him from the heat, and to prevent the Martians from reading his brain waves.

In my opinion Mr. Tickell, like the failed US presidential candidate, is a "Profiteer of Doom" and is just using fear tactics to sell his book to the gullible folks who are too ignorant to know that the planet quit warming in 1998 and that Gorebull Warming is a myth.

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Clip | Link profscience
Aug 11 08, 3:25am (33 minutes ago)
There is no evidence that carbon dioxide causes atmospheric warming. There is ample evidence that global temperature is more influenced by solar activity than any other known cause.

If CO2 were the major cuase, we would all be in trouble because 97% of the CO2 emitted into the atmosphere comes from three sources. Volcanoes, rotting vegetation and forest fires are those three sources. All other sources, including man-made sources, account for only 3% of the CO2 in the atmosphere.

Stop screaming about some non-existent "consensus" of experts and allow true scientific discourse to take place. Stop using the media to attempt to lead the sheep to the wrong conclusion.

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Clip | Link Tistic
Aug 11 08, 3:27am (31 minutes ago)
We all learned in grade school that the scientific method is how scientific facts are distinguished from from hypotheses (rational, perhaps, but unproved).

Because the various man-made global warming conclusions rely on subjective computer models rather than the scientific method, the public does not have the public policy benefit of certainty that global warming is caused by man. That is why at least half of us are not persuaded that radical economic shifts are required to try and prevent something we may not be causing.

As the global warming agenda commands more and more of the media landscape, we are left to rely on the reputations and (giving them the benefit of the doubt, for a moment) the good faith of scientists. Yet people who claim to speak for all scientists insist that global warming is caused by man as if that has scientifically been proved, which insistence undermines the credibility of their argument.

That they declare the debate settled, when plenty of other well respected scientists dispute the man-made conclusion, only undermines their credibility all the more.

These two facts scream to reasonable people that something is amiss.

Add to those problems the fact that (in the States, at least) virtually every major societal institution has been politicised to one degree or another (the courts, the academy, mainline protestant church denominations) and we are left with little to be confident in about these outrageous claims. The scientific community is not free of politicisation, so we must question whether these conclusions are declared in good faith - after all, much scientific funding is won or lost based on towing the line.

So ... Extinction?? Are you KIDDING ME??? Have the courage of your convictions.

Produce a week long television series (say, two hours per night) explaining how the scienctific reasoning fits together. If it is so conclusive, it should not be a problem to address the issue transparently. (For example, explain why apparent global warming on Mars and Jupiter are not seriously important bodies of exculpatory evidence from man's "guilt" for warming on Earth.) Acknowledging that the man-made global warming conclusions are hypotheses and not proof should not be a problem, either, if the science is so persuasive. Allow the critics of man-made global warming theories their own week of rebuttal programming to be heard - this, too, should also not be a problem, if the science is in. Just let them look like the fools you say they are by allowing their arguments to shrink back in shame next to yours. Allow the people a well-informed opportunity to be persuaded one way or the other. (Or, do you not really believe the your conclusions?? Or, is it that you doubt your ability to communicate the ideas effectively?? Or - be honest - are you not just taking the illiberal approach that you know what's best for the masses, because we wouldn't understand?)

Make your case honestly or leave us alone. Let the people of their various democracies vote for or against the global warming public policies of their preference, rather than having our economic strength incrementally undermined by policies so many of us disagree with.

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Clip | Link Red46
Aug 11 08, 3:35am (23 minutes ago)
i thought we were all for change. Why can we humans not adapt to our envronment as we have been doing for millenia? Change. Adapt. Live. !Si se peude!

Will no one notice this dramatic rising water and be caught unwares (...coming down the stairs...). Then again, those who hate humanity and think we should stop populating the earth may hope the rising waters can assuage their sick fever.

Bed-wetters like this work themselves up into a lather and attempt to take the masses along for the ride. He needs to be left without publicity and without an increase in wealth from the publishing of such nonsense. The rest of us need to reclaim our respective gonads and treat them as any crazy auntie or uncle; with a kind and calming, "Yes dear. We love you anyway."

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Clip | Link Notmypockets
Aug 11 08, 3:36am (21 minutes ago)
To Mindopener,

How would you pay for this? Your plan would alone (no global warming/cooling or snow showers) would cause the starvation of untold millions, cause the unemployment of millions and generally make life miserable for all that do not have millions in there bank account.

Now, if you would like to say donate some of your millions, this would be a good thing, but please, refrain yourself from making me pay millions that I dont have.

Where I live, the weather changes 4, yes 4 times a year. Does this mean that we have global warming, cooling and everything in between? I guess it does, but um, isnt it supposed to be that way?

Personally I am getting fed up with pukes like you that are trying to run/ruin my life and those of my friends and family. We live in a great society with many freedoms, including yours (no matter how misguided it happens to be).

Please stop trying to break the system before you and your type do some real damage, like say bring us back to preindustrial revolution reality. But then, you would be complaining about the amount of methane that the horses are emitting...

Please do go out and educate yourself, the truth is out there. Dont let others spoon feed you drivel that would turn you into a sheep waiting to be led the sheer.

I, like the vast majority am proenvironment. I recycle, turns off lights, use as little heating and cooling as possible to mention a few.

Why do you feel the urge for calling us down, does it give you a since of power? Does it give you real power? Do you have finical stakes in the warped Ecoindustries? Or are you just afraid of living, or might it be death?

Open up the windows, it just may be raining, snowing, perhaps it could even be blowing, but this is what the weather has always done. Its been happening since the Earths creation and will continue till its NATURAL end.

Do you happen to believe that since we are a natural part of this planet, any miniscule changes that we may impose might, just might be construed as natural as well?

Food for thought and please...Do open your mind

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Clip | Link marvinlzinn
Aug 11 08, 3:38am (20 minutes ago)

If we get four degrees more, then where I live will be nearly back to normal. (This year is it about five degrees below normal.)

Let the world with it's one-sided scientists go ahead and burn as they expect. For me it is quite comfortable.

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Clip | Link Kaguya
Aug 11 08, 3:44am (14 minutes ago)
I could go on and on with statistics refuting man made global warming. But we've all heard it prior to this. I'm really tired of hearing how we are ruining our planet. These purveyors of doom should all be locked up. Or, at the very least have their tongues and fingers removed. Feed them to the dogs.

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Clip | Link mikefad
Aug 11 08, 3:44am (14 minutes ago)
Is it really surprising that this guy is selling a new book?

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Clip | Link boBNunny
Aug 11 08, 3:44am (13 minutes ago)
First of all, there are 10,000 scientists (meterologists, climatologists, astrologists, and physicists) who believe that Global Warming is FALSE! Even if it is true, there are those that believe it's a GOOD thing. Fewer people dying of low tempartures, more greenery (they like CO2), more oxygen (they give off oxygen), and longer farming time. And even if THAT's not considered, as I've always said, FOLLOW THE MONEY! There's always an agenda. ALL of these people have an agenda and most are being paid. I'm not saying don't believe them. Just keep an open mind because they are pushing the agenda they are PAID to push; whether is because of grants, jobs, or just celebrity or power.

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Clip | Link Maximo2008
Aug 11 08, 3:48am (10 minutes ago)
The environmentalists in the United States were absolutely sure that logging in the Pacific Northwest was decimating the population of spotted owls. Wishing to save this bird species they shut down forests, logging operations, sawmills, and left huge forest areas untouched so the spotted owl could flourish. After bankrupting thousands of families and companies, the spotted owl continued to diminish. Eventually the environmentalists came to realize that the real reason spotted owl numbers were diminishing was because of competition from another species of owl that was larger and more aggressive. Oops, sorry for all the divorces, suicides, and ruined lives of those who used to work in the woods. They were sure we knew the answer, but they didnt have a clue. These same people now are preaching the end of the world due to global warming. Dont even bother to listen. They dont have a clue.

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Clip | Link Diogenes2008
Aug 11 08, 3:53am (4 minutes ago)
It amazes me that so many people are willing to toss scientific integrity to the winds for the sake of personal agendas. But what is worse is that there are so many people out there ignorant enough to happily believe whatever "authority" tells them. You folks in the UK are very accustomed to that.

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Clip | Link bexrex
Aug 11 08, 3:54am (4 minutes ago)
As I dog-paddled my way through this coagulation of scientific flotsam, I was anticipating how far into the story the Global Warming phenom would wait before it would be artfully laid at the faulty feet of us silly humans. Only 4 paragraphs! And even so, the accusation was nearly invisible -- "...the warming caused by human emissions could propel us towards a similar hothouse Earth".

No mention at all that icecaps for millennia have melted just fine thank you with no SUV's in sight!

And just who do we think we are being the ones to decide when "too warm" is too warm? I'll bet them there Laplanders would love a nice sunny beach resort! Who are we to say "nope. you folks keep your parkas. We'll do the resortin' down here in the milder latitudes." Sounds like cultural intolerance to me!

Sheer and utter nonsense!

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Clip | Link valerie432
Aug 11 08, 3:56am (1 minute ago)
Blah blah blah, get a real job and stop using your phony scare tactics!!

Anonymous said...

''the internal-combustion engine economy we all live in needs to be "re-booted". Electic cars, less air travel, less roads, new tech sailing ships to carry cargo and passengers, led lights, in short a new economy is on its way. Those who have vested interests are not keen on the new changes, hence climate change denial.''

Anonymous said...

"The most intelligent treatment of the politics and economics of climate change I have ever read. Brilliant, clear and unanswerable"
George Monbiot.

"Elegantly simple and eminently workable, this is a proposal that could change the world. Kyoto2 should be read by anyone with an interest in climate change policy"
Mark Lynas.
"A fresh, accessible, cogent and bold case for a radical departure from most established thinking. Very seldom is an argument made with such gusto, sharpness and wisdom. Whether you agree with Oliver Tickell or not, your understanding of and thinking about this vital global challenge will be greatly enhanced by reading this book"
Caspar Henderson.
"Kyoto2 is bang on the nail. Exactly the kind of fresh, radical thinking that is now so urgently required"
Jonathon Porritt.
"Kyoto2 hits the nail on the head: we need to crank down the global supply of fossil fuels. This is much simpler and more effective than trying to cap emissions, an almost hopeless task. Climate change is a global problem that must be treated globally. Kyoto2 shows how this can be done."
Peter Barnes, writer and social entrepreneur.
"Informative and illuminating, this is a radical assessment of where we're going on climate change (ever-further down the destructive slope) and where we could be headed with prompt and vigorous action (into a far healthier and still sustainable future)."
Norman Myers, Professor and Visiting Fellow at Green College, Oxford University, and at the Said Business School.
"This is a fantastic book - timely, important, and far-reaching, a key reference for anyone seeking to understand the complexities of dangerous climate change and current efforts to reduce it. Critical in tone and thought, Kyoto2 sharply examines one of the most urgent issues of our time."
William F. Laurance, Senior Scientist, Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, Panama; and former president, Association for Tropical Biology and Conservation.
"Analytical and prophetic, Kyoto2 proposes a green economics of climate change that could just save our planet."
Miriam Kennet, Director, Green Economics Institute.
"This is the book we need, and not a moment too soon. It takes seriously the latest science, and sets out to achieve what is necessary, not what's easy."
Bill McKibben, environmentalist, writer and founder of