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Cheers - AE

Friday, 23 October 2009

More warble gloaming dates for your diary.

From Watts Up With That? comes a couple more dates for warble gloaming to have buggered things up by. Apparently Dr. James Hansen gave an interview around 1988-89 in which the interviewer gestured out of the window of Hansen's New York office and asked if the view would look different in twenty years. The reply:
“The West Side Highway [which runs along the Hudson River] will be under water. And there will be tape across the windows across the street because of high winds. And the same birds won’t be there. The trees in the median strip will change.”
Twenty years from 1988-89 would be coming up in around, ooooh well, now actually. Watts Up With That? makes use of Google Earth to show how not under water the West Side Highway is as well as a graph showing the lack of obvious sea level rise at Manhattan. Anthony Watts gives Hansen a little bit of leeway here, though not very much:

When did [Dr. Hansen] say this will happen?

Within 20 or 30 years. And remember we had this conversation in 1988 or 1989.

Even if we give Dr. Hansen the benefit of 30 years, I’ll point out that satellite measurement of global sea level has slowed significantly in the last few years, and is not likely to rise enough to meet Dr. Hansen’s prediction even 30 years out. See this story.
Yeah, well, the original question was
“If what you’re saying about the greenhouse effect is true, is anything going to look different down there in 20 years?”
And made in 1988 or 89. Hmm, on that basis I'd say that late 2009 is a fair date to hold him to. At the extreme edge of the outside a very generous soul might give Hansen's prediction another decade to see if it pans out, but I'd say a couple of months at the outside and possibly it should have happened already.

So the updated hard predictions list should look like this:

  • Probably should have happened by now - New York's West Side Highway impassable due to being underwater - Dr. James Hansen (1988/89 interview)
  • "Imminently" - loss of world's coral reefs - David Attenborough ('world’s tropical reefs face ‘imminent destruction’ unless CO2 levels are slashed')
  • Late 2013 - ice free Arctic - Al Gore (North Pole will be ice free in five years')
  • 2014 - the whole world and everything fucked up beyond repair - WWF.
  • Dec 2016 - the whole world and everything all fucked up beyond repair - the Prince of Wails and the 100 months mob
  • Late 2019 - ice free Arctic - Pen Hadow (ten years to Arctic ice loss)
  • Late 2029 - loss of Great Barrier Reef - marine scientist Charlie Veron ('global warming will destroy the World Heritage site within just 20 years')

  • View Larger Map

    Come on in - the water's lovely.


    Bill Sticker said...

    Another one to cross off in the Apocalypse sweepstake.

    Angry Exile said...

    Yeah. I don't rate my chances of winning the sweepstakes. I've got 'moles to die out from skin cancer by 2019'.

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