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View Poll Results: Do you do something for our Earth
Yes 50 51.55%
No 17 17.53%
I don't care 30 30.93%
Voters: 97. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 2009-06-28, 01:27   Link #81
C.A.
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I'm seeing a recurring pattern here, it seems that its the political situation of the US that's giving people these strange ideas and misunderstandings. Also there's really a huge lack of knowledge on what Global Warming really is about.
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Old 2009-06-28, 03:13   Link #82
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It's not just the US, but all of the Western nations and other First-World economic countries as well; Many of the global warming/climate change bills in the US are based on what the EU is doing...Unfortunately, that brings an assumption case when the topic of "Environmentalism" is discussed, since modern (As in last 3 decades modern) environmentalism is as much of an "ideology" in politics as anything else and is practically fenced off to the issue of "Global warming/Climate change" with little to no context in anything else...As just shown here, depending on who you talk to, people will speak in different contexts on the same general issue...
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Old 2009-06-28, 04:00   Link #83
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Seems like the politicians and the media are not handling the problem carefully enough.

Scientists seem to have a hard time convincing politicians or getting them to understand.

Like, while there's the Near Earth Asteroid Rendevous program, which tracks deadly asteroids. There are no political decisions on who will be busting those rocks when the Earth is faced with such threats. Even the UN hasn't given the any answers on how should the Earth react to such an event, who's going to be sending rockets and who's going to fund. Its a threat to the entire world, so its not only NASA and America's responsibility to save the world from asteroids.

The same goes for Global Warming, the politicians are not handling it well enough.
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Old 2009-06-28, 04:26   Link #84
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MidnightViper88 View Post
An ecosystem has tangible aspects to it, but is otherwise an extremely complex whole, both in it's functions and how it "behaves"...Can anyone explain why the Earth cools and warms itself? Can anyone explain why the atmosphere "sticks" to the Earth? Irregardless of our vast scientific knowledge, there are just things outside of human understanding, if only because of current limits; After all, it took several millenniums for science to stand where it is today...
I was going to sit this one out but frankly this got a bit too hilarious...
If you wanted to make a point of our scientific ignorance, I would recommend using an example of things we can't explain, not something that's very easily explained with the current knowledge. I'll admit that the cyclic nature of earth's climate isn't very clear cut case but why the atmosphere "sticks" to the earth... Have you actually heard about a thing called gravity?
Something that baffles me in your logic is the idea that if we can't create something we can't destroy it either. How does that work. Granted we probably will not be capable of completely destroying earth's ecological system, we'll be dead long before that and that is in fact what we're trying to postpone if not prevent.

Quote:
My point is the difference between what we can and can't influence...No one can argue for dirty water and air; Pollution's obviously something humans are capable of, and it's something that can be easily cleaned up (Depending on what country you live in, anyway)...But that's not what I'm talking about...I just don't think we have the remote capacity to influence some of the greater things of our ecosystem like the climate itself...Environmentalism used to realistic goals about doing good things for the environment before people like Al Gore made it something that got out of hand with outworldly claims of "man-made changes" to the climate and whatnot...During the 1970s, "we" were pulling our hair out over global cooling; 3 decades later, we're talking about global warming...Now, I can be pretty damn positive that Earth's overall climate change does not go from a cold cycle to a warm cycle in 30 years past, so it makes me wonder where we're being lead to and if anyone knows what the hell is even going on...Or, if, for some bizarre reason that the climate did change in a short 30 year cycle, maybe it was just nature independently and we experienced a rare natural quirk...
The kink in the climate cycle isn't 30 years, it covers pretty much everything post the industrial revolution. Major climate changes need a trigger, something that sets the ball rolling. So far it's been triggered by the sun's activity etc. stuff that we can only theorize on, but the mechanics how these chain reactions have started have been the same that we're seeing today. Based on our current knowledge about the earth's climate cycle something has disrupted it. Given the fact that the amount of for example carbon dioxide in earths atmosphere is 3000 gigatonnes and by the emission levels of 2004 it's increasing thanks to human element by 27 gigatonnes annually. That's emissions alone, excluding all other factors. Roughly 10% increase in mass in a decade can hardly be considered insignificant. Given the fact that out of human influence the amount of vegetation both on land and even more significantly in the oceans that would filter this CO2 is in radical decline.

Of course it may be that this is just some quirk that we had nothing to do about, but given the facts that we have today it seems very very unlikely. Given the predictions of the outcome and fairly strong evidence that we can actually do something about it, shouldn't we do it? Nah, it's just a rare natural quirk that will probably kill just 90% of human kind....
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Old 2009-06-28, 08:28   Link #85
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I can't take anything seriously when the same people who rant and rave about what there science is telling them now as if it's a fact when they did the same thing 30 years ago but it was instead a definite thing that we were all in for a soon to be ice age. Beware the consensus' in science, they usually mean a group of "scientists" are telling certain people what they want to hear.

I'm not gonna get into arguments with self important people who believe that there "science" is all that matters when it's based off of computer models they change as the wind blows. There are way to many variables that can be brought in by human greed to trust any of the scientific consensus. You can call me a fool and ignorant and direct me to take certain "classes" to better understand things but the truth is nobody really knows anything concrete and they are merely trying to make themselves thing they are more significant then they are.

Do what you will as far as trying to save the world that's fine with me, enjoy your new religion. I'll just do what I always do, steer clear of zealots and tend to my own garden.
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Old 2009-06-28, 10:29   Link #86
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MidnightViper88 View Post
An ecosystem has tangible aspects to it, but is otherwise an extremely complex whole, both in it's functions and how it "behaves"...Can anyone explain why the Earth cools and warms itself? Can anyone explain why the atmosphere "sticks" to the Earth? Irregardless of our vast scientific knowledge, there are just things outside of human understanding, if only because of current limits; After all, it took several millenniums for science to stand where it is today...
I'm fairly certain that we know why our planet's atmosphere doesn't go flying away, and escimo stated it nicely. We also understand many of the dynamics behind the planet's energy gain and energy emission, but what we don't understand quite as well are the fine details.

Science as we know it took a surprisingly short amount of time to develop. As our understanding and technological developments grow in all areas, our knowledge growth over time occurs in a nearly exponential manner. I say that as someone actively "in the field."

Quote:
Originally Posted by MidnightViper88 View Post
My point is the difference between what we can and can't influence...No one can argue for dirty water and air; Pollution's obviously something humans are capable of, and it's something that can be easily cleaned up (Depending on what country you live in, anyway)...But that's not what I'm talking about...I just don't think we have the remote capacity to influence some of the greater things of our ecosystem like the climate itself...
You don't think we do, but the reason seems to be because you wish to believe that humanity has no real impact on the planet, rather than anything with actual observations.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MidnightViper88 View Post
During the 1970s, "we" were pulling our hair out over global cooling; 3 decades later, we're talking about global warming...Now, I can be pretty damn positive that Earth's overall climate change does not go from a cold cycle to a warm cycle in 30 years past, so it makes me wonder where we're being lead to and if anyone knows what the hell is even going on...
Science always continues forward and refines our understanding regarding previous results. It is possible for a large-scale cooling effect to be observed at the ground level as a result of overall global temperatures rising, as I've explained in an earlier post. I don't know what was behind the idea of global cooling in the 1970's (if that was even true), but it's possible that they observed that based on the limited technology and understanding that they had at the time. As technology and understanding improved, it would come to be realized that there was actually something else behind it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MidnightViper88 View Post
And if someone's doing something in hopes of "stopping climate change" or anything, then that would be a futile battle...
You'll never know unless you try.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MidnightViper88 View Post
If humans really are such a large problem as we keep telling ourselves, then maybe a mass population reduction would be good for the environment, but that's just me being cynical now...
A suggestion, if I may: how about if, instead of experiencing a mass die-off followed by wars over limited resources that would set us back to the medieval ages, we try to correct the problem-causing aspects of our society? Namely, why don't we conserve a bit more and mitigate the damage caused by our acitivities to the environment?

You seem obsessed with the idea that "adapt or die" is purely a biological function. It's also behavioral, particularly when you examine social animals (as humans are). Might I point out that you are not currently adapting.



Quote:
Originally Posted by TooPurePureBoy View Post
I can't take anything seriously when the same people who rant and rave about what there science is telling them now as if it's a fact when they did the same thing 30 years ago but it was instead a definite thing that we were all in for a soon to be ice age. Beware the consensus' in science, they usually mean a group of "scientists" are telling certain people what they want to hear.
I mentioned it above, but science is a rapidly expanding field. Many new discoveries cause us to go back and re-evaluate previous findings in a new light. You should be very skeptical of any scientific discoveries (that skepticism is one of the tenets of being a scientist), but you shouldn't completely ignore any science-based claims simply because you feel that scientists (or at least, climate scientists) are too inconclusive for you.
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Old 2009-06-28, 10:34   Link #87
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Well, I guess I affect global warming indirectly by the fact that I'm practically scared to drive, even though I'll eventually get to it.

On a side note, I really support Green Peace, as well as a lot of those animal welfare organizations. I think I eventually plan on becoming a complete vegetarian, because I've been cutting off animals from my list of things I eat. So far, I refuse...

-Reptiles
-Amphibians
-Insects
-Lamb
-Lobster
-Clams and Oysters
-Deer
-Anything that's more exotic than that.

I really got to stop eating chicken, beef and pork, since those are the ones I find hardest to stop eating. Once I do that, I think I'm pretty much a vegetarian. I've been seriously cutting down on all fast food however. Especially KFC.

It's a long way to no meat for me.
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Old 2009-06-28, 10:44   Link #88
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When I am free from this seriously unavoidable thing called College I will start life anew as a vegetarian, and would also start sowing seeds around my mother's yard, my aunt's yard and even our neighbors front garage - which has a nice patch of rich soil - though he doesn't want any fruit growing on his turf.
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Old 2009-06-28, 11:22   Link #89
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What's hilarious about this topic is that somehow the individual people are responsible for all the environmental "disasters", and that we all must do our part in all the things we're doing horribly wrong.

Instead of, you know, just going after the megacorporations which kinda spend a fuckton more energy in a day than any individual person would ever do in their whole life.

But why am I asking myself this...? It's the megacorporations telling us it's our fault anyways
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Old 2009-06-28, 11:39   Link #90
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Originally Posted by WanderingKnight View Post
What's hilarious about this topic is that somehow the individual people are responsible for all the environmental "disasters", and that we all must do our part in all the things we're doing horribly wrong.

Instead of, you know, just going after the megacorporations which kinda spend a fuckton more energy in a day than any individual person would ever do in their whole life.

But why am I asking myself this...? It's the megacorporations telling us it's our fault anyways
Which is why I find apologists for "we're fine with the current pillage/loot system", "I'm too lazy to pick up after myself", or the "this actually takes some work to understand so I'll just stick with the opinions that don't require me to get off my ass" principles so interesting.

Individuals are only "responsible" in that they happily consume from the choices given (oh we don't sell that because the profit margin wasn't as high - doesn't matter that you *wanted* it). And unfortunately, watching the lobbyists derail/defang even obviously-good-for-the-general-public ideas shows that grassroots pressure directly on politicians to get changes made. And even then (as we're seeing) the politicians will try to dress up crap as the "solution" with a pretty name and then its business as usual. It gets *really* interesting when politicians go directly against what even the majority of their own party's voters want.
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Old 2009-06-28, 11:52   Link #91
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ledgem View Post
A suggestion, if I may: how about if, instead of experiencing a mass die-off followed by wars over limited resources that would set us back to the medieval ages, we try to correct the problem-causing aspects of our society? Namely, why don't we conserve a bit more and mitigate the damage caused by our acitivities to the environment?

You seem obsessed with the idea that "adapt or die" is purely a biological function. It's also behavioral, particularly when you examine social animals (as humans are). Might I point out that you are not currently adapting.
Define "damage"; My entire thesis with this thread is to try to understand what the boundaries of human influence on the environment is; What context we have in our ecosystem...

And yeah, you're right about the behavioral thing; Unlike the dinosaurs, humans have the cognitive ability to rationalize...The only dinosaur right now is Nancy Pelosi, silly me for mistaking our species on equal to another...
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Old 2009-06-28, 12:04   Link #92
Kusa-San
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Originally Posted by WanderingKnight View Post
What's hilarious about this topic is that somehow the individual people are responsible for all the environmental "disasters", and that we all must do our part in all the things we're doing horribly wrong.

Instead of, you know, just going after the megacorporations which kinda spend a fuckton more energy in a day than any individual person would ever do in their whole life.

But why am I asking myself this...? It's the megacorporations telling us it's our fault anyways
Sorry but you're totally wrong. Yes the megacorporation have a big part on it but that don't mean, that us, we don't need to do something.

Every human need to do something, each of us need to do something. You think that what we will do will change nothing. Well me I think you're wrong. Every little thing we will do it's better than a big nothing. And if each of us do this litlle thing then it will be a big something a big someting that can even change the behviour of these megacorporation. Because if these megacorporation work, it's because there is people who buy their product. But if these people don't buy their products anymore then they will be force to change.

I will say it again and again and again, but each of us as human have a responsabilty toward our Earth. It's not acceptable that the planet who gave us life, who gave us everything, us human just don't care about her and destroy her just for our sake. It's not acceptable at all !

Yes I know it's more easy to say, it's not our fault, it's the fault of the megacorporation and blablablabla....Sorry but sometimes, you need to see the truth and to take your responsabilty even if it's more difficult.

So yes it's the fault of the megacorporation but it's also the fault of each us.

And I know that some people think we have the choice to do it or not but it's not true. We don't have any choice here. It's not a matter of choice but a matter of duty toward your planet. A matter of your responsabilty toward next generation. A matter of survival !
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Old 2009-06-28, 12:56   Link #93
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The corporations' actions are, in the end, a result of individuals not caring. They were inevitable.
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Old 2009-06-28, 13:16   Link #94
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Quote:
Sorry but you're totally wrong. Yes the megacorporation have a big part on it but that don't mean, that us, we don't need to do something.
I'm not saying you ought to throw crap all over the street just because the corporations are to blame. I'm saying the corporations want to make it so you, as an individual, feel responsible, and so they can keep on doing the things the way they do them. Which ultimately has a much greater impact than what you individually do.
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Old 2009-06-28, 13:39   Link #95
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I can't take anything seriously when the same people who rant and rave about what there science is telling them now as if it's a fact when they did the same thing 30 years ago but it was instead a definite thing that we were all in for a soon to be ice age. Beware the consensus' in science, they usually mean a group of "scientists" are telling certain people what they want to hear.

I'm not gonna get into arguments with self important people who believe that there "science" is all that matters when it's based off of computer models they change as the wind blows. There are way to many variables that can be brought in by human greed to trust any of the scientific consensus. You can call me a fool and ignorant and direct me to take certain "classes" to better understand things but the truth is nobody really knows anything concrete and they are merely trying to make themselves thing they are more significant then they are.

Do what you will as far as trying to save the world that's fine with me, enjoy your new religion. I'll just do what I always do, steer clear of zealots and tend to my own garden.
There's a whole lot of concrete, clear evidence, but its people who are not willing to look at them. People have an extremely weak capability in understanding and seeing the big picture. People don't realise that they are that significant, humans have the ability to damage environments accidental or not with ease.

While you tend to your own garden, I hope you're not using a gas powered mower, also don't use too much conventional fertilizer and pesticide, turn to organic products instead.

People leave all sorts of electrical appliances on standby, these drain electricity as well. Gasoline heaters, electric heaters, the worse thing about using them is not that they are inefficient, its the houses that humans live that are terribly inefficient in keeping heat in. Building technologies are now coming up with walls and windows that can keep heated rooms heated and also keep the house cool during summer.

There are so many things that the individual household does that's contributing to the carbon footprint and other environmental effects. Billions of people live in homes, these homes contribute a very significant amount of greenhouse gases, not just in carbon emissions, but also CFCs and other ozone depleting gases.

If you don't have the habit of switching off lights and switches in your home, I'm not sure whether you have the habit at work, vice versa.
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Old 2009-06-28, 16:34   Link #96
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Science always continues forward and refines our understanding regarding previous results. It is possible for a large-scale cooling effect to be observed at the ground level as a result of overall global temperatures rising, as I've explained in an earlier post. I don't know what was behind the idea of global cooling in the 1970's (if that was even true), but it's possible that they observed that based on the limited technology and understanding that they had at the time. As technology and understanding improved, it would come to be realized that there was actually something else behind it.
The global cooling thing was pretty big in the 70's. They ended up making a big fuss about Aerosols. The notion was that man made aerosols in the upper atmosphere were diffusing the sunlight and it was going to tip the balance and cause a new ice age. If you're thinking that it sound somewhat similar to our current crisis, you might be right. You know, man made (insert substance) is going to cause runaway (insert reaction). It was never as popular as this crisis, I'm guessing the internet has something to do with that.
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Old 2009-06-28, 19:06   Link #97
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I'm not saying you ought to throw crap all over the street just because the corporations are to blame. I'm saying the corporations want to make it so you, as an individual, feel responsible, and so they can keep on doing the things the way they do them. Which ultimately has a much greater impact than what you individually do.
Corporations just represent a large conglomerate of people behind certain activities. It's a convenient way to avoid individual blame and responsibility. What I mean by that is, if a company makes the decision to start dumping something toxic without treating it, that decision came about from someone. Someone must have proposed it at a board meeting; someone (or in this case, multiple people) didn't speak up against it. The workers, perhaps limited in their capacity to go against company protocols, ultimately carry the action out. There are a lot of people involved along that point, and a lot of them could have spoken out against those actions.

As I see it, part of the problem is that people are so set on the idea that they need to cut corners and win people's approval in order to be successful that they throw any thought of morals and ethics out, and they lose any courage to stand up for their beliefs or to question what's going on. As I believe in the good of humanity, I think that if there were a bit more of that then perhaps "corporations" and other large groups of people would be seen in a better light than they are now.
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Old 2009-06-29, 09:12   Link #98
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Originally Posted by Zippicus View Post
The global cooling thing was pretty big in the 70's. They ended up making a big fuss about Aerosols. The notion was that man made aerosols in the upper atmosphere were diffusing the sunlight and it was going to tip the balance and cause a new ice age. If you're thinking that it sound somewhat similar to our current crisis, you might be right. You know, man made (insert substance) is going to cause runaway (insert reaction). It was never as popular as this crisis, I'm guessing the internet has something to do with that.
For some reason, people keep ?misremembering? what that "70s thing" was about. It wasn't about "global cooling" -- it was about the predicted effects of a nuclear exchange leading to a "nuclear winter". There was separate and unrelated ongoing research about whether or not there'd be another Ice Age since they appear with some periodicity but that was before the data on what was going on really started coming in. It was also before "chaos theory" or nonlinear systems analysis had really come into play. Some people seem to be conflating several separate threads of discussion from that time.

The "aerosol thing" was indeed a problem but it had nothing to do with cooling or heating. It was about the ozone layer that protects us from nasty solar radiation (UV) being stripped away by a chemical reaction from refrigerants -- and guess what, we seem to have reversed the degradation. By eliminating the chemicals involved, the natural processes that generate the ozone layer could re-assert.
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Old 2009-06-29, 18:12   Link #99
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For some reason, people keep ?misremembering? what that "70s thing" was about. It wasn't about "global cooling" -- it was about the predicted effects of a nuclear exchange leading to a "nuclear winter". There was separate and unrelated ongoing research about whether or not there'd be another Ice Age since they appear with some periodicity but that was before the data on what was going on really started coming in. It was also before "chaos theory" or nonlinear systems analysis had really come into play. Some people seem to be conflating several separate threads of discussion from that time.

The "aerosol thing" was indeed a problem but it had nothing to do with cooling or heating. It was about the ozone layer that protects us from nasty solar radiation (UV) being stripped away by a chemical reaction from refrigerants -- and guess what, we seem to have reversed the degradation. By eliminating the chemicals involved, the natural processes that generate the ozone layer could re-assert.
The nuclear winter issue was separate from the climate concerns. There was a big fuss about temperatures dropping in the northern hemisphere, glacial advance, shortened growing seasons, etc. The temperature record shows a cooling trend and much like now people were doing a lot of arm waving and freaking out. At the time they didn't call it global cooling (a term which wasn't used until global warming became popular). The main culprit (i.e. the most popular theory) was thought to be sulfate aerosols in the form of sulfur dioxide. I wasn't referring to the fluorocarbon ban that was pertaining to the ozone problem.

And come on you HAVE to remember this...
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Before that came out it was pretty much limited to articles in scientific periodicals and reports from environmental summits, but once the media got involved is when the arm waving started.
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Old 2009-06-29, 20:02   Link #100
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hmmmm, the most I recall is that the supposed "cooling" that refers to turned out to be purely statistical ghosts from bias in the data collection-- all I can guess is that it was debunked so quickly I simply threw it in the mental trash bin. It doesn't even show up in chart graphs I can find in Nature except as a slowing in the increase of rising temperatures for a short period at one interval in the last 100 years.

yeah, I need to pull up this again...
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