Monday, July 17, 2006

Global Warming Hits Home

Global Warming

I think I have proof that global warming is a reality. I have been around for a while and have observed a good slice of the North American climate, particularly that of the backyard of my childhood home.

Childhood summers were fraught with powerful thunderstorms, driving rain and hot humid days. There were days the humidity was so high it felt like you were trying to breathe underwater. Even a short safari into the field across the street to catch Monarch butterflies was a chore. The best thing to do was laze in the branches a friend’s apple tree eating tart green apples, which we paid for dearly later in the day.
The winters were cold and snowy. If we didn’t have snow on Thanksgiving something was wrong and we always had plenty of snow for Santa to cruise in on during Christmas. January was so cold you could feel the inside of your nose freeze, scarf or no scarf. My brother and I would construct complex trails down the two hills in our backyard for the sled and snow saucer. We’d play out in the snow until we couldn’t; feel our face or limbs and were sure our ears were frostbitten.

Over a period, I left, but my brother being an avid cyclist and skier is a keen observer of climactic conditions - he as kept me abreast of the ever-changing climate patterns in the backyard. The snow is minimal and comes late in the year if at all. The summers are hot and humid, but not as much rain. So there you have it, proof positive that since Phos was a kid we have had a significant swing in the climate, at least as far as our backyard goes and this change is because of the build up of carbon from the fires we set as kids and my brother grilling.

I watched an excellent show on Global warming presented by the Discovery Channel. It featured Tom Brokaw (didn’t even know he was still alive) and the show talked to the amount of CO2 people and industry release into the atmosphere each day. I figure as much as my brother and I grill, burning almost pure carbon, we must be arch envirocriminals. Even replanting the Brazilian rainforest isn’t going to make up for all the lump charcoal smoldering away each evening (sometime two or there times a day during weekends) on the ol’ grill. I’ll drive less, I will turn out lights I am not using, etc., but the grill stays.

All kidding aside the warming is already adversely impacting wildlife and ourselves and it is past time for all of us and the slackers in Washington to realize the fact, then take positive steps to do something about he problem.

Next time, more backyard ecology: The Shrinking Earth

20 Comments:

At 12:51 PM, Blogger Cherry! said...

As long as the wine doesn't dry up...

 
At 4:25 PM, Blogger Becky said...

I agree with Cherry!

 
At 4:35 PM, Blogger LifePath11 said...

It should all be that simple!!

I believe you are right on target there PK. Listening to the nightly news does nothing to lighten the path I am afraid. I guess that I should be banned from listening to the news also!

Hey...Just keep passing the wine bottle please! ;-)

 
At 6:31 PM, Blogger nanuk said...

Living in the Arctic only 20 years I've noticed considerable climatic changes. I think what we are experiencing (and I have no scientific evidence for this) is a natural warming accelerated by what we are doing to the atmosphere.

I used to read a lot of the old Icelandic sagas, and can recall them talking about cattle and hay in Greenland about a thousand years ago. So things were warmer at other times during mankind's tenantcy on earth. But the amount of crap we are needlessly sending upwards is criminal.

Personally, I think a business case can be made for green technologies - it just means change to how we view our role in nature; and despite all his adaptibilty, man is still very suspicious of change.

 
At 7:05 PM, Blogger LifePath11 said...

Nanuk, I think you too are correct. We do go through cycles, BUT we are also heating up over and above what would be a normal cycle. I have a brother in law who is a scientist at JPL in CA. He has been studying global warming for many years. He had the opportunity to live and study down in the Antartic for close to a year also. He deffinately is convinced about what he has found. The massive cutting of rain forests etc. doesn't help either.

Maybe Willie Nelson has something with his bio fuel ideas. I saw a very interesting program on Public TV last evening about the whole thing. Very interesting.....

PK, So what is the answer? Do you really think anyone in Washington DC really gives a hoot? Perhaps Gore is the smart one.....and the Jackasses just like to make fun of him.

 
At 7:10 PM, Blogger jin said...

When I was a kid:

-we used to have snow drifts to the TOP of our garage. I'd go sledding down them.
Now, most years, not even a dusting of snow on Xmas.

-trick or treating meant bundling up OVER your costume so no one could see who you dressed up as.
Now, it's warm enough to wear shorts.

Even in the last decade! I catered an event Every November for the past 10 years. When I started it meant driving very slow because of icy & snowy roads to make sure thousands of sweets got there safely. The last few years I don't even wear a jacket.

Scientific proof's not necessary for me. My eyes are enough.

 
At 7:56 PM, Blogger Keshi said...

all that heat...was I travelling somewhere close to ur place? ;-)

Keshi.

 
At 8:47 PM, Blogger Sugarfoot said...

Carbon monoxide buildup due to the consumption of fossil fuels or just normal climatic changes in a world that spans millions of years? Tropical climates to ice ages, to tropical changes again. The debate will no doubt carry on for a thousand years after we're all dust.

 
At 11:22 PM, Blogger Die Muräne said...

Just wait until Mr. Wally "there's no global warming" Crawler is back here! lol He will cool you down a bit

 
At 6:55 PM, Blogger The Phosgene Kid said...

Cherry!, Becky: The world would be a poorer place with out a glass of wine to go with it

Lifepath: I am a news junkie, comes with my past occupation, I suppose. I still like to keep abreast of developments, just not before bed. A couple glass of wine would go a long way in easy the blow. I don’t care for Gore, I am suspicious all politicians. The only thing he has going for him as a Democrat is he seems to be able to keep it in his pants and doesn’t seem to be a total drunkard unlike the rest of the boys. I may look into some of the Green candidates; unfortunately voting for members of these non-mainstream parties is kind of like tossing your vote into a deep bottomless pit.

Nanuk: They specifically mentioned Polar Bears on the show. The experts are worried the bear may to be able to “evolve” quickly enough to keep pace with their changing environment. Unfortunately you back yard is a lot more fragile than mine. The sad part is money talks and as long as those making a buck off the relaxed or non-existent restrictions on emissions are in charge, change will never happen.

JIN: Yep, I remember freezing ass on Halloween – had to toss a lot of eggs at houses to keep warm! All kidding side I think our wealthy “leaders” see the problem, but refuse to acknowledge it as it would hurt their bottom line.

Keshi: Australia was mentioned in the show – the outback is drying out and the folks involved with fire prevention and protection are very worried. One of the top firemen said he has never seen such a prolonged dry spell and if it doesn’t end soon there will be fires of epic proportions.

SF: I had read one article that blamed methane from cow farts as a major contributor to greenhouse gas – just the Republicans trying to shift the blame as usual, I suspect.

DM: A huge slab just fell off the Eiger because the glacial Ice holding the mass together had melted.

 
At 8:29 PM, Blogger Keshi said...

yeah Aus outback is always at the risk of bush fires...

Keshi.

 
At 12:29 AM, Blogger Die Muräne said...

Well informed kid! As always. Another big part will fall down soon.

Maybe I should take some pics of the alpes around here as long as they're still here.

 
At 4:33 AM, Blogger Eternally Curious said...

I remember whiter winters, beginning no later than Thanksgiving, and wetter springs too! Can't remember where I put my keys - but I do remember that!

 
At 7:48 AM, Blogger The Phosgene Kid said...

We are all in the same leaky boat and the captain of the ship is insane.

 
At 12:29 PM, Blogger Die Muräne said...

How can you dare to call me insane!?!

 
At 10:32 PM, Blogger The Phosgene Kid said...

DM: Nothing but love brother - but if you are steering this crate, I want off!!

 
At 11:16 PM, Blogger Die Muräne said...

lol!

 
At 7:50 PM, Blogger Sugarfoot said...

I read a similar article that cited swine off-gassing for the build up of greenhouse gasses such as methane.

Hmm, I would bet that there are probably more people than cows, pigs and horses combined. So first we add all the methane emissions from every person, cow, horse and pig. That would increase the estimation of methane emissions expedentially. Now consider that carbonmonixide is a biproduct of fermentation which also adds greatly to the buildup of greenhouse gases. So if you add how much liquor is consumed by humans, add the fact that the wastes from these liquor making processes are often fed to cows, horses and pigs then combine the resulting methane emissions from this consumption, then no wonder this world stinks!

I will eat no more beans and drink no more beer forever. Join me good people of the world, we all must do our part.

 
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