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593 weeks ago @ Hot Topic - The bad news, and the ... · 0 replies · 0 points

After all, we don't ask aroma therapists for advice on the health system....
You should not forget Ben Goldacre's chapter about Matthias Rath's campaign to cure AIDS in South Africa using vitamins.

593 weeks ago @ Hot Topic - Gluckman: climate deni... · 1 reply · +1 points

I won't waste my breath mentioning Mike Hulme, because he doesn't agree with you either. Instead, here is the "moderate" Dr Hansen from Storms Of My Grandchildren:

After the ice is gone, would Earth proceed to the Venus syndrome, a runaway greenhouse effect that would destroy all life on the planet, perhaps permanently? While it is difficult to say based on present information, I've come to conclude that if we burn all reserves of gas, coal and oil, there is a substantial chance that we will initiate the runaway greenhouse. If we burn the tar sands and tar shale I believe the Venus syndrome is a dead certainty.

The surface temperature on Venus reaches 460 deg C. Seems extreme but I have no doubt that James Lovelock would agree James Hansen.

593 weeks ago @ Hot Topic - Gluckman: climate deni... · 3 replies · 0 points

Here are some working climate scientists who agree with Dr Gluckman. Cavil away...

593 weeks ago @ Hot Topic - Gluckman: climate deni... · 2 replies · 0 points

What about James Lovelock who argues that it's likely that climate change will reduce Earth's population to 1 billion in the next 100 years; renewable energy is a distraction and a silly waste of time; large scale conversion to nuclear power is the only sensible solution to the energy problem.

Extreme enough?

598 weeks ago @ Hot Topic - Time of the season · 1 reply · +1 points

According to Prof Saunders NZ's contribution to world production of cereals is 0.04%, meat is 0.55% and dairy is 2%. If we converted all class 1,2 & 3 land to wheat production and managed 8 tonnes per hectare (USA = 2.5t/ha) she estimates we would contribute 1.3% of world wheat supply.

So more of an amuse-gueule really.

599 weeks ago @ Hot Topic - Ah, I see you have the... · 0 replies · +1 points

So Mr Wish-it-were-so has once again outsmarted all those ninnies at the National Academy of Sciences! They recently released a report on ocean acidification which includes the conclusion that:

The chemistry of the ocean is changing at an unprecedented rate and magnitude due to anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions; the rate of change exceeds any known to have occurred for at least the past hundreds of thousands of years. Unless anthropogenic CO2 emissions are substantially curbed, or atmospheric CO2 is controlled by some other means, the average pH of the ocean will continue to fall. Ocean acidification has demonstrated impacts on many marine organisms. While the ultimate consequences are still unknown, there is a risk of ecosystem changes that threaten coral reefs, fisheries, protected species, and other natural resources of value to society.

599 weeks ago @ Hot Topic - Time of the season · 0 replies · +1 points

In June 2009 Otago University ran a forum on the global food crisis and the video from the sessions is available here.

In Session 5 Prof Caroline Saunders from Lincoln explains why she thinks NZ should not try to "feed the world." You can download it and see what she had to say if you are interested.

Chris Laidlaw interviewed Associate Prof Hugh Campbell from Otago Uni prior to the conference and Campbell said that "NZ cannot sustain a first world lifestyle by selling agricultural exports to people in Haiti". His view was that local farmers in third world countries needed to be supplied with the technology to improve their farming productivity. He went on to say that NZ agricultural exports to the third world tended to be aimed at the growing middle classes and gave the example of a joint venture between Nestle and Fonterra to market ice cream in Mexico.