Archive for October 10th, 2009


Best Time I’ve Had in 15 Million Years

October 10, 2009

Science Daily reports on an online article published in the Oct 8 Science that CO2 levels haven’t been this high in 15 million years.  Yale Environment 360 picks up the thread.  This recent finding was unearthed by examining ancient marine algae, not tree rings.  (Yes, I know.  The tree ring data were used to reconstruct temperatures, not CO2 levels.)

“The last time carbon dioxide levels were apparently as high as they are today — and were sustained at those levels — global temperatures were 5 to 10 degrees Fahrenheit higher than they are today, the sea level was approximately 75 to 120 feet higher than today, there was no permanent sea ice cap in the Arctic and very little ice on Antarctica and Greenland,” said the paper’s lead author, Aradhna Tripati, a UCLA assistant professor in the department of Earth and space sciences and the department of atmospheric and oceanic sciences.

“Carbon dioxide is a potent greenhouse gas, and geological observations that we now have for the last 20 million years lend strong support to the idea that carbon dioxide is an important agent for driving climate change throughout Earth’s history,” she said.

387 ppm.  That’s quite a milestone.



October 10, 2009

Congratulations to President Barack Obama on his receipt of the Nobel Peace Prize.  Lots to say about this.  Surprising, in many ways; warranted in many others; but ultimately, a great honor.  As a close friend who works with refugees in Jordan, Egypt, Iraq, and many other struggling nations put it: In the eyes of the rest of the world, Obama’s election moved the United States forward 20 years diplomatically.  In doing so, it probably shifted the world toward a more peaceful equilibrium.  No question, acknowledgment of this, or something like this, had a lot to do with the committee’s decision.

More congratulations are forthcoming, first to me for shifting over into my late thirties — today is my birthday! — and shortly thereafter to my sister and soon-to-be brother-in-law, who get married tomorrow.

As a result of this wedding, I will either be slack in my posts for the next few days, or my posts will be outrageously-ha-ha funny.  We basically have an open bar for the next three days.  Whatever I say, please don’t hold it against me.