Anonymous asked in Science & MathematicsAstronomy & Space · 1 decade ago

Carl Sagan / Global warming?

I watched a Carl Sagan doc yesterday, where the late Mr Sagan was talking about Venus and runaway greenhouse effects. Also global warming. There seems to be a lot of recent debate over whether Global warming exists, (or that there’s evidence to support claims). Why was someone as well researched and genuine as carl sagan so convinced? Im very confused.

7 Answers

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago
    Favourite answer

    Well, the reason is simple: Scientifically climate change (the scientific term for global warming, since it still allows the possibility of being a global cooling, and does not give the results of the study in advance by the name of it) is one of the most solid things we have. It exists, we can measure it, we can put it in relation with other observations. Saying that climate change does not happen is one of the most stupid claims somebody can make today, because this is really contrary to the evidence we have.

    Next, you should not believe anybody. Not Carl Sagan, not a climate scientist, not one of the many idiots who think they can do climate science after getting a pay check from the petrol industry. Real science does not need acts of faith. You don't need to believe in climate change. You can test it and check if this is true. Propaganda works different. There you need acts of faith, and will get evidence that only remains valid if you promise not to be skeptical, because otherwise you would be a enemy of 'the truth'.

    Also, to show how science works a bit better: If somebody like an answerer in this question says, global warming does not happen because the antarctic ice is not retreating, he maybe says a correct fact (it really doesn't do that), but what about the many other evidence? If you visit the alps, you can see dozens of glaciers that retreated dramatically in the past 100 years. From geologists, you can hear that there is no evidence that this happened in the past. Satellites can measure the direct energy balance of the planet and these show that Earth absorbs MUCH more energy currently as it emits - it is really heating. Other satellites can show that the sun is emitting actually less light as it did in the beginning of spaceflight.

    There is actually no recent scientific paper anymore, that claims that global warming does not happen - all global cooling stuff is from the 1970s, when climate science was new and many tools existing today did not happen to exist.

    The real hard question is: Is it man-made or not? Climate had always had cycles. We even had much warmer climate in the past as the most pessimistic scientists predict in 100 years. And the evidence for a man-made global warming is not complete - it is circumstantial. The reason why scientists currently say that they are 98% sure that the current climate trends are man-made, is simple math: Out of the measured increase in temperature, only in 2% of the input scenarios it can be achieved, including measurement and model errors, without human activity. All known natural causes and processes are not enough, and scientists who are unhappy with AGW work hard to discover new natural processes that they might be missing. Of course there is still a 2% chance that it might be all natural. In 4 years, there might still be a 1% chance left, the recent research indicates that many known natural sources have even weaker influence because they did not change in the past 100 years or even became weaker.

    The current state of climate science can maybe be summarized as this: "Without human influences, we should be in a little ice age again"

  • Cosmos was first shown in the 80’s and indeed way ahead of its time. Dr Sagan took many a punch to dare to speculate, but as you are probably aware, he was very careful to distinguish speculation from fact. To-date, Cosmos required very few revisions and was rich in prophecy.

    Sagan pointed out that Venus was a stark reminder of what could happen to an Earth sized planet which has a runaway greenhouse effect and indeed the carelessness we have in polluting our atmosphere with greenhouse gasses.

    There’s a lot of evidence that our planet has undergone serious climate changes in the past and Earths cleansing mechanisms will work to a certain critical unknown point.

    As far as I am concerned, I feel Dr Sagan was 100% correct and not enough action has been taken by governments.

    Why was someone as well researched and genuine as Carl Sagan so convinced?

    He was not convinced but concerned about the levels of greenhouse gasses we are pumping into the atmosphere without fully knowing the future long-term effects.

    The truth is that the changes needed greatly impact on peoples consumeristic life-styles. Do woodcutters care about the forests being the Earths lungs? Do oil companies want their bottom lines effected?

    People consume and give back nothing. There is another organism that does this.

    A parasite.

    Source(s): He was a man, take him for all in all, We shall not look upon his like again *He was greatly appreciated within the scientific community. Indeed, the Mars "Pathfinder" was later re-named "The Carl Sagan Memorial Station" in his honour.
  • 1 decade ago

    There is utterly overwhelming evidence that climate change is happening (Calling it global warming is a little confusing, though technically correct)

    There are groups with vested interest trying to persuade the public that the evidence is wrong or incomplete. And unfortunately there are many people who love to think in terms of government conspiracy who ar happy to go along with the idea of it being a hoax or fraud.

    There is some debate about the extent to which climate change is anthropogenic - man-made, because climate has changed many times before in the history of the planet. But to an extent, that debate is academic - the change is happening, whether it is entirely our fault or not, and we need to do something about it!

    When I studied Environmental science at Uni back in the 80s, there were experts who were claiming that we were approaching a new ice age. Sagan was one of the few who pointed out the significance of the greenhouse effect. He was hoping, at one point, that the two might just cancel each other out!

  • 1 decade ago

    Carl Sagan was an independent thinker who did not agree with big government policies. He was against the militarisation of space. Right or wrong, his views were in our best interest.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Recent reports show that the east Antarctic ice shelf is not diminishing. This is yet another nail in the coffin of the AGW/CC hype. As soon it is recognised by our political leaders that the hypothesis has been falsified the funeral can take place, and scientific common sense can return. Every single tenet the alarmists have clung to, are being shot to pieces, one by one. The ice is NOT disappearing, the sea is NOT rising significantly, the planet is NOT heating uncontrollably - in fact, very little is going on at all which hasn't occurred before, several times over.

    ed- I'm not saying climate change doesnt happen ! In fact I've stated its always happened. I'm denying the possibility of global warming to the extent alarmists and tree huggers have described

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    unfortunately weather we want to believe or not its happening,the seas are oh so slowly rising where there use to be mountains of ice there is nothing now there green hills!!!its affecting animals,and hot countries are hotter,mount everest is melting!i only know a little about it all but i really do think its a very very serious matter,why do we have so much snow this year hmmmmm....could it also be to do with global warming.good question hope you get more answers xxx

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    The planet has been warming, generally, since the last Ice Age. That's obvious, else we would still have glaciers in central England.

    That was around 20,000 years ago. My problem with the rabid global warming people is that they want to blame ME for causing it. No way. Man DOES contribute, of course, but did NOT cause it!

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