Click images for more details



Recent posts
Recent comments
Currently discussing

A few sites I've stumbled across recently....

Powered by Squarespace

Discussion > Children's Science books

We should worry about this.


The religion has taken root and very likely will still be around long after any of us. Or our children.

Mar 15, 2016 at 6:48 PM | Unregistered CommenterMartin A

Of course standard AGW theory will be included in text books. It presents a coherent message, a consilience of evidence in which all parts fit together. If you wanted to include a "skeptical" alternative, there is only an incoherent mess of conflicting messages, hardly something to teach to people of any age.

Mar 15, 2016 at 7:53 PM | Unregistered CommenterRaff

Of course standard AGW theory will be included in text books. It presents a coherent message…
But that is the nub of the argument – despite your assurances that it does so, it does not; while “man-made” (a definition worthy of argument on its own) CO2 rises, temperatures do not.

Mar 15, 2016 at 9:17 PM | Registered CommenterRadical Rodent

It does depend what your time-scale is, of course. You obviously ignore the lack of rise that has occurred throughout this century, so far. Does a rise of less than 1°C over 130 years really have any significance? A question that should be raised, should you look here or here.

Mar 16, 2016 at 11:49 AM | Registered CommenterRadical Rodent

No it doesn't:

while “man-made” (a definition worthy of argument on its own) CO2 rises, temperatures do not

Look at the graph:

Mar 16, 2016 at 1:18 PM | Unregistered CommenterRaff

Like I said, you are happily ignoring the lack of rise in temperatures since the turn of the century, during which time, some 30% of “fossil” fuels ever consumed added to the “CO2 load”. Odd, though, that the rise in CO2 has remained steady, despite the exponential increase in fossil fuel consumption. Of course, observation of such anomalies does not fall into your remit. Oh, well... hey-ho.

Mar 16, 2016 at 1:52 PM | Registered CommenterRadical Rodent

I wonder what proportion of people of any age Raff thinks would get the sum 400ppm x 1,000?

Mar 16, 2016 at 6:35 PM | Unregistered CommenterIt doesn't add up...

Interesting question, IDAU (let us ignore the technicality that it actually isn't a sum but a product...).

Mar 16, 2016 at 7:55 PM | Registered CommenterRadical Rodent

It doesn't add up...

Mixing numbers with things children understand is a good way of making things stick in their minds forever.

For children the 400ppm sum could be equated to Old Trafford/Emirates/Ibrox/Murrayfield or sports stadium of choice.

If a capacity crowd at Murrayfield (67,144) represents the atmosphere how many people are CO2 at 400ppm?

27, or not as many people as the Scotland and France teams combined.

This normally surprises most adults especially with the follow up question

How many people represent Argon?
630 or 42 Rugby Union teams

Mar 16, 2016 at 9:07 PM | Unregistered CommenterSandyS

Raff, would that be the same Tamino, whose support for Mann's Hockey Stick prompted Steve McIntyre at Climate Audit to write a thread titled "Tamino's Trick:Mann bites Dog"?

If so, do you really think he should be influencing impressionable children's minds? You might like to read it, as the Hockey Stick Illusion is mentioned.

Mar 16, 2016 at 10:34 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

Ratty, why odd? The proportion of the industrial age increase in CO2 concentration (280 then ... 400 now) that has been added since 2000 is about 35 ppm or about 30%, similar to your number. What else are you expecting? And if doubling CO2 causes a 3C rise, a rise from 265ppm to 400ppm should be expected to cause a fraction of that - say 0.3 to 0.6C. The peak of the 2016 El Nino is about 0.5C above the peak of the 1998 El Nino. So the numbers are in the right ballpark.

Sandy, that is just a variation on the "insignificant trace gas" theme.

Golf, you don't have to believe Tamino. You could plot the numbers yourself. And you'd get the same graphs.

Mar 16, 2016 at 10:45 PM | Unregistered CommenterRaff

…if doubling CO2 causes a 3C rise…
And where do you get that “3C” [sic] figure? The climate sensitivity is still being debated, but is generally being accepted as lower than originally thought (mainly because they cannot find any measurable sensitivity in the first place – so all they have to rely on is the guesswork of theory), and many reckon it might be around 1°C. How long before some admit that there could be none whatsoever?

Anyhoo… it is obvious you have not deigned to view the sites I linked to; perhaps some NOAA data is more to your liking.

Mar 16, 2016 at 11:22 PM | Registered CommenterRadical Rodent

Raff, so you didn't want to check Climate Audit, but still think Tamino is worth referring to twice in quick succession, for inclusion in children's education?

The 'standard AGW theory' you refer to would include Mann's Hockey Stick and Tamino's defence of it, or has standard AGW Theory moved on?

If you want to play 'Trump Card' Climate Science in the style of SKS, you had better hope Trump doesn't get elected.

Mar 16, 2016 at 11:54 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

Ratty, you are oddly lacking in nous. 3C was arbitrary. If I must, I'll rephrase it for you: And if doubling CO2 causes a 1.5C rise, a rise from 265ppm to 400ppm should be expected to cause a fraction of that - say 0.15 to 0.3C. The peak of the 2016 El Nino is about 0.5C above the peak of the 1998 El Nino. So the numbers although now a bit out are still in the right ballpark. Happy now? So what amount of warming were you expecting since 2000?

Golf can you suggest something coherent to teach in its place? Some "skeptic" analysis? Perhaps Force X from Jo Nova is your idea of what we should be teaching to kids?

Mar 17, 2016 at 1:14 AM | Unregistered CommenterRaff

Raff, you would rather mention Jo Nova and her regular exposure of antipodean climate science calamities, than defend Tamino (and his defence of Mann's Hockey Stick) who you referenced twice in succession?

I certainly think children would want to know why standard AGW Theory is based on a Hockey Stick that climate scientists want to forget, now they have 'moved on', and trying not to appear dependent on. Have SKS approved sources recommended you don't get involved with Mann's Hockey Stick controversies, and simply attack something else instead, as a diversionary tactic?

Which other bits of standard AGW Theory should also be dropped from text books? Forecasts, predictions and projections? They have been a dismal disappointment, if standard AGW Theory necessitates changing the terminology to mask their failures.

Mar 17, 2016 at 2:10 AM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

Alan Kendall, I note your comment about textbook errors being repeated by those who read the textbooks, and your expertise in Geology/Sedimentation. I have an interest in maritime history, sailing etc.

All the text books state that the original Cinque Ports in Kent, set up by Edward the Confessor, Hythe, Romney, Hastings, Sandwich and Deal ( Winchelsea and Rye were added later) 'silted-up'. This is what I was taught in school, and presumably school children still are.

This seems wrong to me as that corner of England is rising relative to the sea. The towns are now feet above sea level, and it is difficult to understand how estuarine silt could raise a towns foundations.

Is this the sort of thing that could be confirmed (or has been) with a hand auger? Much is made of 'rising sea levels', and children are filled with scare stories, but much of it seems localised to areas where land level is dropping, rather than sea level rising. Text books (read by children and adults) are a bit short of a balanced understanding of changes in land level, preferring to concentrate on the sea.

I accept that sea levels are rising at the same slow rate they have been doing for 100s of years.

Mar 17, 2016 at 2:47 AM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

golf Charlie. The clue lies in the name: "sank" ports !! No, seriously the whole of southern UK is experiencing a relative sealevel rise due to an isostatic adjustment following the melting of the Pleistocene icesheets. So your original premise is, I'm afraid, incorrect.

There is perhaps a problem in some textbooks that lazily include the information that the demise of the Cinque Ports was due to them being silted up. It wasn't the towns that silted up it was their harbours. Fine grained sediment was deposited by sediment introduced down rivers but, more importantly, introduced from the sea at high tides and dumped at slack tides. Without the technology to dredge effectively many ports, despite their strategic position, were doomed. I also believe, from only half remembered history lessons, that their demise was due just as much to their unsuitability for shipbuilding, leading to the rise of Southampton, Portsmouth, Chatham and even London. Silting up commonly occurs so rapidly (in a geological sense), that it occurs irrespective of whether sealevel is rising or falling.

Relative sealevel falls can, of course, be inimical. Many ports and their harbours on the Baltic now lie high and dry because of the same, but more intense, isostatic rebound.

Mar 17, 2016 at 8:30 AM | Unregistered CommenterAlan Kendall

Mr Kendall: please do not take the likes of Golf Charlie for a fool. He is perfectly well aware what silting-up means, and is also aware that it is not the town but the harbour where it happens. His point is that, even should the harbours be cleared of silt, they would still not function as ports, as the harbours are now too far above sea-level. You should watch Time Team: one programme was from that area, concerning an event that occurred in 1066; at the time, it was not too far from the sea – now, it is about five miles away. Using your logic, that is some serious silting; personally, I think something else might have happened. Harlech castle is another good example; built on the coast with its own dock, it is now about a mile from the sea. While clearing the “silt” would bring the sea back to its dock (and oust a lot of residents from their homes), it would be too far above the water-level to be useful. Textbooks of the past contained a lot of erroneous information which could be dismissed as general ignorance; what excuse is there for the flaws in textbooks of the present?

One good example of rapid silting (even in human terms) is the Dee estuary, where towns which had the sea lapping against the sea-walls had the water replaced by salt-marsh within very few years.

Mar 17, 2016 at 10:34 AM | Registered CommenterRadical Rodent

Radical Rodent. Please do not infer that I take golf Charlie as a fool. I have quickly developed the greatest respect for him and especially for his humour which I find similar to my own (although I cannot compare with his brilliant zaniness). I was asked a question which I tried to answer. The Cinque Ports area is sinking relative to sea level, therefore his original premise was incorrect. Silting up also is used as a short hand for other effects such as.constantly shifting sand banks or estuaries being cut off by sand spits, commonly during single intense storms (as I believe happened to one Cinque Port).

People commonly don't understand or believe just how quickly coastal changes can occur. You mentioned Harlech but the example I would use is Thermopylae in Greece where the narrow coastal path used by the Spartans now lies so distant from the sea that the sea is now almost invisible from the defensive position.

Perhaps golfCharlie was alluding to past variations in sealevel changes such as affected the Netherlands, causing extensive flooding -so the use of the word reclamation for the polders is factually correct. If this was the nub of his question I would have expected him to be more specific.

If you were correct in ascribing an ulterior motive to golfChalie's question, then he is welcome to it. I will continue to respond to questions in my limited areas of expertise as if they were genuine, come what may.

On a completely different matter, can anyone explain why Entropic Man has not contrbuted to his discussion? With his background as a science teacher I would have thought he would have had much to add.

Mar 17, 2016 at 11:59 AM | Unregistered CommenterAlan Kendall

On a completely different matter, can anyone explain why Entropic Man has not contrbuted to his discussion? With his background as a science teacher I would have thought he would have had much to add.

Mar 17, 2016 at 11:59 AM | Unregistered CommenterAlan Kendall

Alan Kendall, Entropic Man has probably been too busy on that other thread "Are Geological Paleo-Climate Records Relevant to The Climate Debate?"

There he is busy re-writing the history books (Ozymandias) and re-interpreting the poetry literature (Shelley) in favour of his preferred view of climate science. Thus we have “… desertification did for Ozymandias”, a man commonly held to have died at about 91 years of age in some comfort (apart from toothache) and with a large empire still under his command.

Only later does Entropic Man back track and say it was allegorical. Well, yes. By the same logic, I guess rising sea level also caused the fall of the British Empire.


Mar 17, 2016 at 1:06 PM | Unregistered Commentermichael hart

Radical Rodent, just checked. Harlech is a location where relative sea level is falling (in contrast to the Cinque Ports) . Therefore I agree that removing sediment from in front of the dock would not be effective.

Mar 17, 2016 at 1:46 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlan Kendall

Alan Kendall & Radical Rodent, thank you for your contributions and responses

That area of Kent is not sinking! Silting up of harbours is a concept I grew up with as accepted fact. Dredging to make channels deeper and wider for larger ships has always occurred, and is a constant necessity for many ports/harbours. Portsmouth Harbour requires regular dredging, and recent works were necessary to create the new Cruise Liner Dock, so it could compete with local rival Southampton.

My career has given me some practical first hand experience and understanding of Landslip, Subsidence, Heave, Solution features, soil compaction etc, though not this century.

The natural harbours of Portsmouth, Langstone, Emsworth, Chichester, Bosham etc are ones I am familiar with, and their maritime history, including merchant trade, fishing, defence, offence, X-channel passenger, etc.

The Cinque Ports, I am NOT familiar with, but the whole concept of them silting up, does not make any sense at all, as soon as you think about it. Modern text books are quoting the same accepted wisdom that caused the Tudors (?) to look elsewhere for useable harbours. Chatham? Portsmouth? London?

When I first thought about 'silting up', many years ago, (1990s?) I thought it may have been linked to a change in rainfall, MWP etc ( which I did hear about at school!) but again, that can not raise an entire town?

I have an interest in Marine Archaeology, partially fuelled by the Mary Rose, and as Radical Rodent points out, the TV series Time Team has had to commit heresy by acknowledging that land levels rise, relative to the sea. I do not know when Plate Tectonics was first accepted, but Darwin's Origin of Species opened the floodgates of many scientific theories, suppressed by fear of upsetting Creationist Religious Theories of the Planet.

Raised Sea Beaches are very visible features of land rising, Harlech Castle is another as Radical Rodent points out.

Climate Science Alarmists are quick to point to areas of the Eastern Sea Board of the USA that are experiencing sea level rise. This is rubbish, as the land level is dropping, through compaction/subsidence of the surface layers, much like parts of the Fens, Broads and East Anglia generally. Yes they are more vulnerable to flooding from the sea.
Wikipedia confirms storms washing away sandbanks etc near Winchelsea and Rye (neither of which I have ever visited) but Google Maps and Photos clearly demonstrates that even if you excavated all the sand and mud, the town is not going to be a port. It has risen!

Climate science does not like to mention land level rise, as (I believe) it defeats some of the sea level rise scare stories, and this thread is about text books! Pre-climate science text books are still wrong about the Cinque Ports, and post-climate science textbooks are still wrong, perhaps deliberately so! Noting your qualifications/expertise/experience .......???!!

Mar 17, 2016 at 2:13 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

So what do people think should be in textbooks if not the "standard theory" (for want of a better term)? If not Force X, why? And what else? You'll have to be careful to avoid the skeptical argument exclusion principle (which warns against using skeptical arguments together, since so many are contradictory), but give it a go. Let's see if we can get a "skeptical" syllabus...

Mar 17, 2016 at 2:23 PM | Unregistered CommenterRaff

Raff, I have never heard of the "Skeptical argument exclusion principle". Is this another part of accepted AGW Theory?

Mar 17, 2016 at 5:48 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie