Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Are Dams a Major Global Warming Contributor?

Don't give up that SUV just yet. A new study shows that dams are worse than burning fossil fuels! Just when you were sure it was SUV's, or livestock, or moose, or those evil babies, you get the global warming rug pulled out from underneath you for the umteenth time. The new evil is those dams!

From: AccuWeather.com Global Warming Center - AccuWeather.com's Global Warming Center is an open forum that looks at every side of the issues of global warming and climate change with scientific clarity. (Take note of the last few words "climate change with scientific clarity." let's see how clear and scientific they really are.)

In their article they trot out an "expert" who says dams "emit very high quantities of greenhouse gases even comparable to, in some cases even much worse than fossil fuels like coal and gas." said Patrick McCully, executive director of the International Rivers Network in an article from News.com.au McCully said global estimates blamed dams for about a third of all methane emissions worldwide!"

Patrick McCully says dams emit "greenhouse gases even comparable to, in some cases even much worse than fossil fuels like coal and gas." This is the clear science that AccuWeather.com Global Warming Center brags about? This is absolute nonsense!

Well, which is it? Are dams comparable to or much worse than fossil fuels? This is not a scientific statement, it is braindead propaganda being accepted by the global warming faithful as science. This report does not document studies or methods and is highly suspect. Let's take a look at a "scientific chart" released a few years ago that supposedly breaks down the sources of methane emissions.
Where in the "scientific chart" above are the dams which are responsible for being the greatest contributors of global greenhouse gas emissions? If this story by AccuWeather.com is correct then this whole chart is way, way off! These inconsistencies don't bother the fanatics and true GW scientific believers and they never will. Certainly such a gigantic cause of global warming couldn't have been missed before now!

The real problem with all of this blatant nonsense masquerading as science is the fact that they don't address the issue of greenhouse gas offsets delivered by the dams themselves. Dams are responsible for about one terrawatt of energy production worldwide and irrigate lands where plants can grow and absorb CO2. Without dams we would have to burn almost a billion tons of fossil fuels more every year. Why won't they ever, ever tell you about that? Because they hate dams, and are rabidly anti anything man-made. Such is their obsessive-compulsive disdain of humanity.

So, now we are supposed to believe that dams produce more methane than all of the tens of millions of square miles of swamps, marshes, wetlands, jungles, and bogs on earth combined? Where is the evidence? How did they measure the methane emissions around dams? Did they cover them with some really big plastic bag to trap the methane and measure it?

The emissions refered to in the article are also known as swamp gas. Swamp gas is said to have fooled many into believing they have seen ghosts or UFO's. This is a case of swamp gas fooling the faithful into believing they have seen a dam.

Swamp gas has been known by several names: ignis fatuus, will-o’-the-wisp, corpse candles, jack-o’-lantern, and marsh gas. A multitude of reliable references to and descriptions of this natural phenomenon have been found in prestigious journals such as Nature, Edinburgh Philosophical Journal, and Symons Monthly Meteorological Magazine. Some of these references are global in scope and span the years from the 19th century to modern times.

Characteristically, swamp gas is found in peat bogs, mud flats, marshes, swamps — and now dams wherever stagnant water coincides with the decay of organic matter.

In the early 1990’s, in defiance of IPCC projections, the methane concentration in the atmosphere abruptly stopped rising, and has remained nearly constant since then.

A recent scientific experiment has also yielded results pointing to the fact that all plants produce methane, and as the climate warms they produce more. In fact 600 million metric tons of methane a year are produced, 225 of those produced by plants. Now, the question is if warming produces more methane then why has the methane level been constant for more than a decade? Could it be that scientists really don't have a clue? Yet more scientific quackery!

Here's what the climate scientists have to say in their article concerning methane emissions.

I am quoting from their article - "What are the implications of all this for our ability to predict the future of the methane cycle? Let’s summarize what you’ve just read. (in their article) According to one set of papers, atmospheric methane could be suppressed in the future by controlling land fires. Or it could be that methane variations are mostly produced by wetland emission, driven by climate change as well as land use decisions, according to another set of papers. Or methane could resume its rise, toward a new steady state, because it is driven by increasing fluxes from melting permafrost peat and hydrates, according to observations on the ground.

The bottom line I take away from all this is that the available studies come to a strikingly divergent range of conclusions. We know a lot about the methane cycle, but as far as forecasting the near-term future, we have no clue. No one would build a nuclear reactor if our understanding of the underlying chemical dynamics were as fragile as this. Instead, we are taking the reins of a planetary biosphere. This is disturbing."

There you have it. "but as far as forecasting the near-term future, we have no clue." It would seem that based on their chart and the newly found evil of dams that they don't have a clue about the past either.

Let's wrap this up with a little common sense. Dams contribute to methane emissions, but they also deserve credit for reducing CO2 emissions and growing vast amounts of vegetation which uptake CO2. Dams are good! They are good for people and the environment. Period!

















9 comments:

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