Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!


Forgot your password?
Earth Government Politics Science

The Science Behind the Paris Climate Accords (thebulletin.org) 118

Lasrick writes: The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists offers a pretty thorough run-down of the pros and cons of the Paris climate accords. William Sweet examines not only the political machinations behind the agreement but much of what the agreement entails and how it got there after 21 years of COP meetings. "As for the tighter 1.5-degree standard, this is a complicated issue that the Paris accords fudge a bit. The difference between impacts expected from a 1.5-degree world and a 2-degree world are not trivial. The Greenland ice sheet, for example, is expected to melt in its entirely in the 2-degree scenario, while in a 1.5-degree world the odds of a complete melt are only 70 percent... But at the same time the scientific consensus is that it would be virtually impossible to meet the 1.5-degree goal because on top of the 0.8–0.9 degrees of warming that already has occurred, another half-degree is already in the pipeline, 'hidden away in the oceans,' as Schellnhuber put it." In an additional audio recording of a teleconference briefing given to the Bulletin's Science and Security Board and other leading scientists and policy makers, Sivan Kartha and Richard Somerville (both on the S & S Board) explain what was accomplished (and not accomplished).
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

The Science Behind the Paris Climate Accords

Comments Filter:
  • "Atomic Scientists" (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward


    Hasn't this rag been discredited enough already?

    These so-called "Atomic Scientists" don't actually do any "Atomic Science" (whatever the fuck that is), because they're staunchly anti-nuclear, so this would preclude any type of "Atomic Science".

    Captcha: NIMBY.

    • Before parent post gets modded to oblivion, it should be noted that the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists (home of the 'Doomsday Clock' if I'm not mistaken), does tend to run a bit activist in its public statements. Now as to whether or not the science they print is sound/skewed/whatever, I'll leave to the reader.

      • by phantomfive ( 622387 ) on Tuesday December 22, 2015 @07:40PM (#51168295) Journal
        This article is a good one, anyway. It's one of the best reports of what happened at the Paris accords. It talks about the different factions (the island nation coalition, the group of 77, etc), and discusses what negotiations went on, compromises made, and how it managed to come to something that looked like an agreement.

        It's worth a read if you're interested in what goes on at these conferences.
    • by hey! ( 33014 )

      The Bulletin is a policy journal, not a technical journal. Always has been.

    • These so-called "Atomic Scientists" don't actually do any "Atomic Science" (whatever the fuck that is), because they're staunchly anti-nuclear, so this would preclude any type of "Atomic Science".

      No, they oppose atomic *weapons*, which is an eminently sensible position to take. They are not anti nuclear power, however, and in fact their stance is that Nuclear power is probably the best way forward in reducing greenhouse emissions.

      Their staff are mostly nuclear or related hard scientists with some policy experts. They are about as respectable as you get for a policy thinktank.

  • by NotDrWho ( 3543773 ) on Tuesday December 22, 2015 @05:06PM (#51167351)

    Is that a real journal? Because it sounds like something that would give me +5% radiation resistance perk in Fallout 4.

  • Smoke and mirrors. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by fred911 ( 83970 ) on Tuesday December 22, 2015 @05:22PM (#51167459)

    Considering how none of the new "agreements" are binding, what real difference does it make? Show and no go, feel good BS.

    • Considering how none of the new "agreements" are binding, what real difference does it make? Show and no go, feel good BS.

      And how binding do you think a "binding" agreement would be? Considering the fact that most of these state leaders would have to go home and have their binding agreements ratified. This is how all politics work; you state your intentions, and then you start working towards making it happen, but nowhere is it guaranteed that it will. One of the costs of having democracy. Hopefully the respective parliaments and electorates are not all too benighted to actually go and do something about things.

    • Public shame actually has some value so I wouldn't call it completely worthless.
  • Where is the science and economics that tells us that the agreement is the optimal solution? That reducing CO2 emissions is the only possible response to the problem? That the cure won't be worse than the disease?

    • Reducing CO2 emissions is something we can do fairly quickly to some extent, and it's going to be helpful. If your boat is sinking, fixing the hole isn't the only solution, but it's going to help a lot with other actions.

      We're getting a lot more energy from solar and wind now, reducing the need to burn coal. This is good. It isn't causing economic problems.

      Obviously, we can't just cut them out entirely, but we can work towards it.

  • EEhhhhh?? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by NetNed ( 955141 ) on Tuesday December 22, 2015 @05:31PM (#51167501)
    That contained absolutely no science, it was just political debate on a subject. I think someone needs to tell Slashdot what science is.
    • That would be swell. Of course, given Merkin's proclivity for Dunning Kruger effect and our prevalence here it would also be a pointless exercise.

      • That's why we come to Slashdot......so I can say something, and everyone can respond and tell me how stupid I am.
    • by hey! ( 33014 )

      So? The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists is a global security / public policy magazine aimed at a scientific readership. Presumably anyone who subscribes has been following the issues and doesn't need a science primer on climate change; they presumably do need more substantive coverage than they're going to get on cable news.

  • by xxxJonBoyxxx ( 565205 ) on Tuesday December 22, 2015 @05:43PM (#51167559)
    I was overseas near the Persian Gulf when the accord came together and the local newspapers were lauding Obama for helping their country water down the "shall" to "should." In other words the final version was considered a huge win for countries that want to continue to sell or use as much oil or natural gas as they can.
    • by phantomfive ( 622387 ) on Tuesday December 22, 2015 @05:59PM (#51167671) Journal
      It doesn't really matter, it's not even an agreement in any formal sense of the word. It is not a treaty, it has not enforcing power, and really it would be more accurate to say that the leaders of the world got together and made a statement.
      • Well, it was a nice travel junket, but I would do it in Germany, during Oktoberfest, with lots of barbequed bratwurst and sauerkraut.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by srmalloy ( 263556 )

      From TFA, the reference to Kerry's speech "In the version of the speech he delivered upon arrival in Paris, he said the flat-earthers seem to think that as the world’s oceans rise, the water is just going to pour off the sides." shows the fundamental disconnect; the AGW proponents aren't willing to even consider the premises of the skeptics, so they make ad hominem attacks against the skeptics themselves to make them personally ridiculous and their positions inherently fallacial. It's always seemed to

      • Nobody's mad at the skeptics. They're important. However, there's a lot of deniers out there, and they throw around insults like they were all going to melt at .5C warmer and they have to use them now.

        A while ago, an oil company commissioned a climate scientist skeptic to look at the data. Previously, he had claimed that warming might or might not happen, he didn't know. The scientist looked at the evidence and came to the conclusion that warming was happening, and then some people started claiming h

  • by The Shootist ( 324679 ) on Tuesday December 22, 2015 @05:58PM (#51167661)

    “I’m skeptical because I don’t think the science is at all clear, and unfortunately a lot of the experts really believe they understand it, and maybe have the wrong answer." -- Freeman Dyson

    If Freeman Dyson says your science is rubbish, it is.

    • Do you have a link to that comment in context? I would love to use that quote.

      • Here it is:
      • How about this quote from him instead:

        "My objections to the global warming propaganda are not so much over the technical facts, about which I do not know much, but it’s rather against the way those people behave and the kind of intolerance to criticism that a lot of them have. I think that’s what upsets me."

        Unfortunately, the truth has nothing to do with how nice you are.

    • If Freeman Dyson says your science is rubbish, it is.

      Confirming once again that a lot of slashdot posters appear highly incapable of judging expertise.

      Dysons a smart guy, we all know that, but he's not qualified on the topic (and says so himself) and has opinions somewhat at odds with those who are qualified on the topic. his claims on fluid dynamics are decades out of date, he's consistently misrepresented the models (possibly by incompetence rather than dishonesty, I'm giving him the benefit of the doubt

      • "Experts" like psychologist John Cooke? or journalist David Appell? or the disgraced 'Hockey Stick' fraud Michael Mann? or "Climategate" falsifier Phil Jones? or politicians like Al Gore? instead of actual climate scientists like Dr Judith Curry and Dr Roy Spencer and Dr Murray Salby (who literally wrote the graduate-level textbook on atmospheric physics). Your argument is an appeal to authority as much as the Freeman Dyson proponents are (with the difference that Freeman Dyson was not found to be a co

        • Thanks, your rant proves that climate change deniers are driven by extreme right wing paranoia, not science.
          • "extreme right wing paranoia, not science."
            But I urge you to look at the OBSERVATIONAL DATA, and I provide links to quotes directly from sources. It seems that Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming Alamists such as yourself are driven by extreme Left wing Collectivist indoctrination that must deny observational reality (UAH and RSS satellite data, and well-sited surface stations) as well as the quotes from the architects of the wealth-redistribution scam. What are you guys going to do when you find t
        • by dywolf ( 2673597 )

          all you've done is showcase your own ignorance

          • "all you've done is showcase your own ignorance"
            Huh? I suggest looking at OBSERVATIONAL REALITY as shown by the UAH and RSS satellites, and the well-sited surface stations. As well as check out the quotes of the architects of the wealth-redistribution scheme. It appears you are ignorant of the satellite data, and closed minded to observational reality. I urge you to drop the dogmatism and employ The Scientific Method - where observation is king.

            "Feel the Bern!"
            ROFL !!!!! you say that I'm "showcasing

            • by dywolf ( 2673597 )

              again: all you've done is show your own ignorance, your incapacity for thought, and gullibility/capability for believing BS.

              Not one thing you've said is backed by reality.
              Not one.

              • Huh? Look at the RSS and UAH satellite data ! I bet you haven't. Hence, you have zero clue as to what I'm talking about. Also, please look at the paleo record for the last 10000 years to get some perspective.

                Actually, it is the CAGW that is not backed by reality. The ECS and TCS have most probable values around 1.2 according to the latest review of observational measurements (eg. Lewis & Curry 2015). Do you understand the significance of this for CAGW ? CAGW is a DEAD hypothesis. The Scientific M

        • Michael Mann disgraced? Phil Jones a falsifier? Climategate being taken seriously? Pro-CACW "experts"? If they're experts, leave out the scare quotes. Would you care to identify who said that quote? I'm willing to bet a nickel that it wasn't an expert, meaning climate scientist. A web site called "green-agenda" looks political, not scientific, and you should not just believe politicians like Al Gore.

          Would you care to rephrase that post without all the ad hominems, and in what Wikipedia would call

          • Why won't you talk about the satellite data, David ?
            • Because I haven't looked at it. There is a simple causal relationship between what we are doing and global warming, and the climate is changing. Since the science shows what I was thinking would happen, I don't examine the details. I'm more interested in the forecasts of what might happen.

              So, what about the satellite data?

              • "Because I haven't looked at it. "
                Epic Fail. You know, what is striking is how strong the opinions of CAGW believers are, without understanding anything about the observed reality/observations. This is a really, really, really bad habit that otherwise smart people fall into.

                The Scientific Method requires you to understand your own hypothesis, as well as any competing hypothesis - and the evidence for an against each one. But you don't follow the Scientific Method and seem quote proud of following dog

                • You don't know much about science, do you?

                  I'm not doing climate research in any way, shape, or form. If you want details on things, find a climate scientist. If I were doing climate research, I'd know what the satellite readings were, in general, and their significance. I wouldn't necessarily have the details, since climate science, like all others, has specialties.

                  I do know that carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas, that we've been putting a lot more of it into the atmosphere, that we keep seeing high

    • by dywolf ( 2673597 )

      even Dyson can get one wrong.

      besides, you're cherry picking one quote from one scientist who isn't a climate scientist out of context, and he never called it rubbish. in fact, he does NOT actually reject climate science, or even AGW. he is at most a reluctant skeptic (a TRUE skeptic, not a denier that hides behind the word skeptic). and Dyson is also a member (founding?) of the very same group the article is even about, the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists.

      and a personal request: if you're going to be so igno

  • by Opportunist ( 166417 ) on Tuesday December 22, 2015 @06:25PM (#51167815)

    And drive it around all you want.

    But I get to shoot you, in that oh-so-unlikely event that every scientist is a moron and every corporate asshole with a vested interest in not having to pay to clean up the mess he makes is right, and you want to escape the water by climbing onto my hill.


  • by reboot246 ( 623534 ) on Tuesday December 22, 2015 @09:38PM (#51168993) Homepage

    The Paris Climate Accords = politics, pure and simple
    Nothing more, nothing less.
    The science got left at the door.
  • Warming is WYSIWYG. What is baked in is more emissions. But it we magically stopped emissions today, warming would stop and slight cooling would begin within a decade or so.
  • Leftist Caused Climate Hysteria is a HOAX to Control and Steal from YOU. That is all it has ever been.
    • Leftist Caused Climate Hysteria is a HOAX to Control and Steal from YOU. That is all it has ever been.

      I think you need to renew your medication, you're talking bollocks out loud in public again.

Statistics are no substitute for judgement. -- Henry Clay