Category: Climate change

  • Climategate for dummies

    The scientific journalist Peter Hadfield (a.k.a potholer54) has a couple of informative and entertaining youtube videos that explain and attempt to verify the claims made in blogs and mainstream media that the hacked emails of climate scientists are proof of a big conspiracy. If you somehow managed to miss the whole climategate saga, as I […]

  • Miranda's Devine hocus pocus

    There’s an Australian journalist called Miranda Devine who writes for the Sydney Telegraph. Last month she wrote a piece titled, Climate damage doomsdayers have led to a surge in hocus pocus ideas. If you can’t be bothered reading the article, I can tell you that in it she argues that climate scientists are responsible for […]

  • Tackling climate change is good for business …

    … says General Motors who has just become the first car company in the US to sign the Climate Declaration. From their press release, “We want to be a change agent in the auto industry,” said Mike Robinson, GM vice president of Sustainability and Global Regulatory Affairs. “As our world faces issues like congestion and climate change, […]

  • How hot will it get?

    Lately, there’s been much discussion about this thing called climate sensitivity. But what the devil is it? Climate sensitivity refers to the amount by which the temperature is expected to increase with each doubling of atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) from pre-industrial levels. It’s important because if it turns out that the climate is very sensitive, […]

  • The higher you go, the hotter it gets below

    Physics was my favourite subject in high school. I still find it fascinating. This week I learnt something new about our Earth and its temperature and I want to share it, because explaining something to someone else, is often the best way of understanding it yourself. If we want to know what the temperature of […]

  • Thin Ice Climate Movie

    Today is Earth day and the official launch of the Thin Ice Climate movie, which is downloadable for free from here – Thin Ice Climate. It is the creation of geologist and amateur cameraman, Simon Lamb. The spiel: In recent years climate science has come under increasing attack, so geologist Simon Lamb took his camera […]

  • Ethics and journalism

    There’s an article in the Financial Post today titled, “Arctic sea ice back to 1989 levels, now exceeds previous decade“. The author is Lawrence Solomon and he goes on to say that arctic sea ice is higher today than on April 14th, 2013. He ends his article with, “The only evident trend in the ice, […]

  • A world of giant snakes

    Once upon a time, crocodiles roamed the arctic1, along with turtles, fish and other warmth-loving creatures. How do we know this? Because bones from these animals have been found there. The bones of a Champsosaur – an extinct crocodile-like animal – were found in the high Canadian Arctic by researchers from the University of Rochester […]

  • Factors besides CO2 – Myles Allen and Wally Broecker

    A great video (<3 minutes) from Myles and Wally about how other factors can modify the impact of rising greenhouse gases. Myles Allen is a Professor in the Atmospheric, Oceanic and Planetary Physics Department at the University of Oxford. Wally Broecker is a Professor in the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences at Columbia University.

  • Peer review and hot cross buns

    Ben Martin is going to explain how academics get their work published in peer-reviewed journals. He is Associate Professor of Mathematics at the University of Auckland. He is also an associate editor for the Journal of the Australian Mathematical Society and has himself published a number of peer-reviewed papers. Rachel: Let’s say, you’ve written a paper. You […]

  • My plan for our planet

    There are expected to be 9 billion people on this planet by the year 2050. I may be one of them. Without sounding too much like a brainless beauty-pageant entrant, I hope that one day, we might see an end to world poverty. But is this view inconsistent with the part of me that also […]

  • How do you analyse horse shit?

    I can’t resist posting a link to an article I read in Desmog recently. It includes the contents of a letter written by environment editor of the SMH, Sam Cubby and sent to an Australian climate change conspiracy theorist. He begins, “In considering your request that I identify errors in the report you sent to […]

  • Are aliens manufacturing zombies?

    There’s so much crap on the web. If I believed all of it, I’d think that the MMR vaccine gave my son autism, that every moon landing has been a hoax staged by NASA, that the holocaust never happened and that aliens have landed on earth and are manufacturing an army of zombies  (those zombies […]

  • Whose conspiracy is it?

    One argument I’ve heard in the climate change debate is that scientists around the globe are in on some kind of conspiracy, the purpose of which is to gather research funding for themselves. As the wife of a University academic, I find this argument quite amusing. Here’s why. My husband, Ben, has applied for and […]