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Thread: Bike Tour of Climate Impacts in DC

  1. #21
    Steve O's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DismalScientist View Post
    The nice thing that happens when the science is settled is that scientists no longer have to beg the government for continued funding.
    Quote Originally Posted by DismalScientist View Post
    Human bodies and global weather are complex systems. It's nice to know that settled science can be reached so easily.
    Quote Originally Posted by consularrider View Post
    Lots of abandoned houses on the route as well.
    Looks like you could get a pretty good deal on some nice real estate! All those suckers leaving town based on fake science.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DismalScientist View Post
    The nice thing that happens when the science is settled is that scientists no longer have to beg the government for continued funding.
    Usually when science is settled on one particular question, you then look at refinements, related issues, etc.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DismalScientist View Post
    So does the latest research say whether coffee is good for you or bad for you?
    Good and bad are value judgments - some people believe its possible to establish an objective standard of morality/ethics/desirability (and that that is true to the meaning of words like "good") while others do not. The potential effects of coffee, on everything from enjoyment, to concentration, to sleep, to cancer, are multiple. Without looking it up, I would guess the science is settled on some effects, but not on all of them.

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  5. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by DismalScientist View Post
    So does the latest research say whether coffee is good for you or bad for you?
    The more important question, and to pull us back on topic: Are you going to join the ride? It's this Saturday.

    Quote Originally Posted by mbroad View Post
    Did you know that DC has a 65% chance of seeing a flood over 8 ft in the next 30 years?

    As climate change spurs rising seas, what parts of DC are most vulnerable to flooding? This all-ages bike ride will tour the parts of the city most susceptible to climate impacts. Citizens' Climate Lobby will lead participants to DC sites where sea barriers are planned and have already been built, and where flooding is expected. The trail will be under 5 miles and friendly to riders of all ages and skill levels.

    FUN RIDE: After the last stop, more experienced cyclists can join for a fun ride along the beautiful Anacostia River Trail to Kenilworth Gardens.

    Sat, May 11, 2019
    1:00 PM 2:30 PM EDT

    Location
    US Navy Memorial Plaza (7th & Pennsylvania NW)
    In front of Archives Metro Station

    REGISTER HERE: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/bike-to...ts-60536200405

  6. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve O View Post
    Looks like you could get a pretty good deal on some nice real estate! All those suckers leaving town based on fake science.
    Ah... A discussion of the application of the scientific method and statistical analysis on public policy issues at its finest...

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    Quote Originally Posted by DismalScientist View Post
    Ah... A discussion of the application of the scientific method and statistical analysis on public policy issues at its finest...
    Revealed preference?

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    Quote Originally Posted by DismalScientist View Post
    So does the latest research say whether coffee is good for you or bad for you?
    Bravo on this fallacy of relevance. Sea level rise and coffee both involve warming liquids, but that's about as far as the similarity goes.

    I don't understand what point you're making. Is it that one should never take action absent a perfect ability to predict the future? Is it that if two scientific studies do not come to exactly the same conclusion, then both should be assumed to be completely invalid? [n.b., in this case we are comparing not scientific results but rather journalists' simplified restatement of scientific research].

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    Quote Originally Posted by DismalScientist View Post
    So does the latest research say whether coffee is good for you or bad for you?
    Yes

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  11. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by accordioneur View Post
    Bravo on this fallacy of relevance. Sea level rise and coffee both involve warming liquids, but that's about as far as the similarity goes.

    I don't understand what point you're making. Is it that one should never take action absent a perfect ability to predict the future? Is it that if two scientific studies do not come to exactly the same conclusion, then both should be assumed to be completely invalid? [n.b., in this case we are comparing not scientific results but rather journalists' simplified restatement of scientific research].
    My point with the effects on coffee on health and climate change is they are analogous. Coffee consumption is a simple input into the complex system that is the human body. Human activity is an input into a complex system that is the global climate. Somehow research is generating changing results as to whether coffee (or eggs, or fats in general, or saturated fats, etc.) or good or bad for your health. No one seems to claim that the science is ever settled on this. Human activity leads to CO2 production that theoretically leads to global warming. Particulate emissions theoretically leads to global cooling. Human bovine raising leads to increased methane production, leading to global warming. Humans killing off the buffalo populations reduced methane, leading to global cooling. Etc, Etc Etc... However, the science is settled in this case.

    I haven't stated my views on the validity of any analysis in this whole thread. I have not proposed taking or not taking any action.

    All I pointed out was that the original statement that there a 65% chance of 8 foot floods in the next 30 years has very little to do with rising sea levels because that predicted rise is so small in comparison with 8 feet. Likely the only cause for 8 foot floods in downtown is a hurricane whose path takes it right up the Chesapeake Bay. I have no idea whether there is a 65% chance of that in the next 30 years. Likewise, excessive rain in the Potomac basin could also cause flooding (although 8 feet sounds high after the river passes through the Mather Gorge), but this also is not related to rising sea levels.

    If two scientific studies come up with mutually inconsistent results, (at least) one must be wrong. Similarly, if two theories are mutually inconsistent, at least one must be rejected. The essence of the scientific method is the rejection of empirically falsifiable theories.

    What I find most offensive are statements that the science is settled, particularly when there is an active literature debating opposing theories (see research on the effects of climate change on cyclonic frequency and intensity). These statements are simply political bullying. Calls to ignore content in publications with a different point of view is simply burying one's head in the sand and just reinforce your political biases.

    My profession, economics, has long been corrupted by politicians wanting a "scientific" imprimatur to their favored policies. This corruption has clearly been migrating to the physical sciences.

    I am growing more of the opinion that good science can only be done by the disinterested. Unfortunately, these disinterested scientists are becoming rarer and rarer and increasingly hard to identify. As a result, I tend to be very skeptical of all studies. I still, however, am able to judge the logical consistency of statements made by proponents and opponents of particular scientific statements.

  12. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by DismalScientist View Post
    My point with the effects on coffee on health and climate change is they are analogous. Coffee consumption is a simple input into the complex system that is the human body. Human activity is an input into a complex system that is the global climate. Somehow research is generating changing results as to whether coffee (or eggs, or fats in general, or saturated fats, etc.) or good or bad for your health. No one seems to claim that the science is ever settled on this..
    I don't know of anyone who has done systematic modeling of coffee and the human body. They tend to do particular studies, based on observed differences in consumption, of particular impacts (does coffee cause colorectal cancer? Does coffee make you so wound up that you post excessively to bike forums?)

    For climate, IIUC, there has been the extensive development of climate models to estimate the impact of increased GHGs on climate, reflecting, as far as empirical and theoretical studies allow, of more detailed questions (what is the impact of reflectivity of cloud cover? How are ocean currents impacted by changing ocean temps? etc)

    This has been done for climate, not for coffee, because A. You can't do the same kind of observational studies on the impact of GHGs on the earth that you can for coffee on say, colon cancer. You can look at 600 people, with different coffee drinking behavior, and statistically adjust for other differences that might impact cancer. We only have one earth, so we can't. OTOH with the climate we are mostly interested in the temperature impact of GHGs and impacts that connect to that. The range of largely unrelated impacts (jitters? cancer? ) of coffee make those more logically independent.

    And the urgency of climate is somewhat different. I may get dementia from drinking coffee. If the data come in later that shows it causes dementia, my descendants can avoid coffee. If we have alter the climate, the effects will effect all future generations (until such changes can be reversed at least)

    So really, this is not a reasonable comparison.

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