A simple climate change model
By Murray Bourne, 05 Jul 2007
There is an interesting introduction to climate modeling over at Realclimate.org. [A "model" here means an equation, or set of equations, that describe how variables affect each other.]
The discussion after the article includes a caution:
Simple models are valuable "educational toys" (as one scientist called them) for experts who understand what the models can and can't tell, but they are toys with sharp edges.
But the article gives a valuable overview of what is involved in climate modeling and is worth checking out.
Footnote 1: It's a shame that the author is almost embarrassed to include some mathematics in his article:
There will be mathematics, but hopefully it won't be too painful.
One of the comments says:
There is nothing to be scared about equations.
Yes, but unfortunately many people are scared of equations...
Footnote 2: This comment also struck me:
From an anthropological standpoint, I am concerned that we humans are repeating the errors of our predecessors. As I understand it, at least eight civilizations have perished because they diverted too much of their resources to attempting to control the climate. Although primitive by modern standards, these resources included even human sacrifice to try to make it rain. They perished from not only crop failures, but also reduction of their populations below a critical mass.
Yes, this is what the book Collapse was about. It's amazing that the human race continues to grow, considering its stupidity.
See the 3 Comments below.