Climate Change and AAPG: Keeping Our Cool

If you have been reading President Denise Cox’s monthly columns in the EXPLORER or have heard her presentations at sectional meetings this Fall, you know that the AAPG Executive Committee has created an ad hoc committee to review and update the AAPG climate change statement.

Please log in to read the full article

Comments (3)

Silver Lining
Mary's perspective is, as ever, balanced and thoughtful. I personally value the wisdom, candor and integrity of the article. Thanks for sharing these ideas and observations with the AAPG membership. And thanks for reminding us of our responsibilities to ourselves and our fellow members.
12/17/2018 3:47:36 PM
Climate Change Statement
As scientists, our first responsibility is to make sure that the science being presented is properly done. As geologists, we have a long-term perspective on the earth’s history. Climate change is an ongoing process in the earth’s history and did not start with the industrial age. As such, the current warming trend needs to be determined to be different from previous climatic changes to be able to say that it is caused by the start of the industrial age and the burning of fossil fuels. It is important to remember that the climate work being done by the climate scientists is not experimental science but mathematical modeling. Modeling requires careful statistical analysis to be useful. One of the critical parameters is sample size. Climate modeling is currently being done with a data base that is 160 years in length. This is not a large enough sample size to be a statistically representative sample of even the last warming and cooling climate cycle of 120,000 years. Current climate modeling is being done with a statistically insignificant data set and is not a valid analysis of cause and effect in climate change. For a more detailed discussion of the problem, see my paper “Models and Science” published in the November, 2018 issue of the Rocky Mountain Association of Geologists Publication, The Outcrop. Monty Hoffman
Show more
12/12/2018 1:17:16 PM
Science and emotion are intimately interlinked and potentially toxic when mixed... back to beneficial pragmatism
I would like to congratulate Mary Barrett our, DEG President, on her column. She points out an issue we all may have seen when a colleague became passionately, wedded to a prospect or play... that normally rational person became a religious zealot, opening personal attacks on anyone who offered an alternative, regardless of the ensuing dry holes. When we leave data behind, and sink to personal attacks because of differences in interpretation, we have lost the essence of science, as well as the professionalism AAPG so rightly prides itself upon. I wish the energy/climate data were easier to sort out; much of the data collection and/or representation the energy dilemma/climate change issue appears to have a conclusion in mind from the outset. The "most likely" sea-level rise by 2100 varies by an order of magnitude. The "real" cost and "hidden costs" of each sector of renewables also vary by up to an order of magnitude per the renewable sector authors, and so on. Clearly, open, respectful dialogue is desperately needed. While all that respectful dialogue is happening, there are beneficial, pragmatic steps to be taken. First on my list are the 1.5-2 billion fellow humans living in abject energy poverty, of whom 70% are women and children. They have little or no electricity and as many as 4 million people die annually of respiratory disease from indoor cooking using dung and other biomass... we and our industry make the lights come on and burners blaze... what should we be doing to help? And, I'm betting most of us can get on the band wagon of research for cleaner/cheaper energy, improving water resource management, resource conservation and reuse, energy resilience through diversification of supply source and replacing obsolete buildings with new buildings on higher ground... these steps make sense no matter what happens with climate and all of them make our world better and more able to deal with inevitable change, of whatever sort, in the process!
Show more
12/5/2018 5:24:14 PM

You may also be interested in ...