Thursday, April 14, 2011

A case of misuse of science in climate change discourse

From Alternet today:
Scientists Find Link Between Global Warming and Earthquakes

Let's be clear, climate change affecting earthquakes does not mean that climate change will make earthquakes more frequent or more damaging. And this process of changing climate affecting tectonic plates takes place VERY SLOWLY. Over milennia. It is something to be aware of, but not something that should be used to imply that Now We're All Completely Doomed.

Here is the original scientific report:
Monsoon speeds up Indian plate motion
(Iaffaldano, Husson, Bunge 2010)

From the report, a very nuanced and specific implication:

Our results support the notion that faster erosion in the eastern Himalayas locally reduced tectonic resistance against India/Eurasia plate convergence.

Things are changing, but we don't know what it means, please don't panic.

There are other, better reasons to panic. Like that the U.S. Government doesn't believe in climate change.

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