Thursday, December 22, 2011

Press Enterprise Editorial on Global Warming

This topic is for anyone who accepts the invitation I posted at this article:

The article repeats some common errors regarding climate science. I don't wish to argue policy, as I'm not trying to assert a specfic policy toward addressing global warming; rather, I'm interested in the science and sharing what I've learned of the science.

UPDATE: As expected, none of the commenters took me up on my invitation to learn more about the climate science they were disparaging, which is not surprising. It's easier to state their opinions where they don't have to defend their sources or explain their reasoning (or lack of). The pleasant side of these misinformed opinions, like the Press Enterprise editorial above, is that they provide fodder for my astronomy presentations. Not only does the science have intrinsic value, but is also helpful to counter the propoganda and foolishness of many editorials on climate policy.

For example, a recent opinion published in the Califorian (Cult of Global Warming Losing Influence) makes this statement:
If carbon emissions were the only thing affecting climate, the global warming alarmists would be right. But it's obvious that climate is affected by many things, many not yet fully understood, and implausible that SUVs will affect it more than variations in the enormous energy produced by the sun.

I added the bold text to the astronomy angle. I'll be looking at the variations of the sun in my next presentation to the Temecula Valley Astronomers.
  • Location: Rancho Water District building, 42135 Winchester Rd., Temecula
  • Date/Time: 7:30 PM Monday, January 2, 2012
UPDATE 30 Dec 2011: My letter to the Press Enterprise was published:

Letters 12/30
Letters 12/29 (Others' responses)

The editor cut some prose and removed an "or" that was indespensible to the tone of my letter. Here's the letter I meant for publication with omitted parts in bold:
Your 21 December 2011 editorial makes false accusations against climate scientists and then says that these scientist need to work on improving their reputation. The false accusation you make is "The purloined emails of leading climate scientists have shown them manipulating data and suppressing contradictory evidence". Some emails, when removed from their context, look incriminating, and so the following organizations have examined them as well as the research these scientists have contributed to: Pennsylvania State University, University of East Anglia, US Environmental Protection Agency, UK House of Commons Science and Technology Committee, Department of Commerce Inspector General, and the US National Science Foundation.

None have found any wrong doing in the public climate science reports, which creates two possibilities: 1) the climate conspiracy includes major universities, the US and UK governments, and the National Science Foundation or [omitted] 2) as said by the National Science Foundation, there has been "no research misconduct or other matter raised by the various regulations and laws ".

It's the Press Enterprise vs. the National Science Foundation on climate. One of you has a credibility problem.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Light Trespass Is Now a No-No in Riverside County

Thank you, Bob Buster, John Tavaglione, Jon Benoit for your 3-0 vote passing ordinance 915 regulating light trespass. By passing this ordinance, the County now requires aim in outdoor lighting. Light trespass results from bad aim, and aiming a light is one of the easier concepts for people to understand if they are aware of the need. The right to bad aim has never been an American virtue, however, many will defend their laziness in the implementation of outdoor lighting, calling it a basic right, or this ordinance, an over-reach by the County.

I write this less that 24 hours after the ordinance's passage, and already I've received a question as to when it can be applied by a person who has endured a neighbor's bare bulb security lights and is now eager to correct the problem.

There is no reason for common security and area lighting to extend beyond one's property, and the passage of this ordinance, avoiding light trespass will become a design standard in building construction.

Local articles on ordinance 915:
Californian, 12/21/11 (older articles in the Californian: Californian 11/22/11, Californian, 11/15/11, Californian 10/25/11)

Lake Elsinore/Wildomar Patch, 12/21/11

Press Enterprise, 12/21/11

KPSP Local 2 News Services, 12/20/11

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Solar's Up

As part of the 11-year cyle, sunspot activity is picking up. There have been sunspots everytime I've looked in the past three months. This image above combines two shots at the lowest and highest magnification I can effectively photograph at. Both are taken with a whitelight filter (a silvered mylar sheet) and I restored yellow color in photoshop. Not only can you see sunspots, but faculae too (brighter areas where magnetic forces gouge the outer layer - as though scraping an apple- revealing hotter and brighter layers). This is part of my next project: a presentation on the sun to my astronomy club on Jan 2.


Saturday, December 10, 2011

Lunar Eclipse, Dec 10, 2011: Total cooperation of weather and horizon

The weather cooperated and my sliver-sized view of the horizon was ideally placed on the morning of Dec. 10, 2011 to give me an excellent view of the lunar eclipse. From my location, the moon set while totally eclipsed. Consequently, the sun rose as the eclipsed moon set.

Above: Field of view looking west. This photo was taken after the eclipse
and after moonset to show my well-paced field of view.

Above: Partially eclipsed moon photographed at 5:52 PST.
At this time, the pending sunrise was not yet evident.

Above: 6:00 PST and the moon is nearly eclipsed.
A few tree twigs cloud the picture.

The eclipsed moon at 6:10 PST.

Above: (6:23 AM) The fully eclipsed moon as dawn washed it out of the sky.
Though visible in the photograph, at this point is was invisible to the naked eye.

The first photo was taken with a digital SLR camera with an 18 mm lens. All other photos were taken with a 3-inch refactor at prime focus.


Saturday, December 3, 2011

Clouds lately

I continue my fascination for weather and clouds. Here are photos from the morning and evening of one day.

Morning: sunrise through the fog:

Evening: Anticrepuscular rays (shadows cast by the setting sun converging in the east):