Global Climate Catastrophe (in 1501?)

Low water creates islands in the Danube at Budapest last week. The normal waterline is visible on the bridge above their heads and the gap equals the draft of Viking’s boats.

Once the Viking Cruise people have your mailing and email address the marketing is relentless, and the fog from 11 hours on two legs of Lufthansa had barely lifted before the email arrived with a fabulously attractive deal on a Rhine cruise in early 2019.

Ah, but I know now why the price is so low.  Drought and low water in central Europe have disrupted cruising all summer and fall.  That iconic sail past the Hungarian Parliament in Budapest so prominent in Viking ads turned into a slow roll on a motor coach.  The one Viking boat docked in Budapest hadn’t moved in weeks and was described as a ghost ship.  We stayed in a below-standard Budapest hotel far from the stunning night views (wash cloths?  Why would you want them?)

The low water on the Danube, Rhine and others is hardly Viking’s fault and they did their best.  One of the captains (we had to switch boats before reaching Vienna, where we left the second boat behind) said it was the worst sustained low water since 1947, and I heard others call it a 200-year drought.  Drought of course might not be the only problem as with low rainfall water draws for farm or human consumption also increase and have greater impact.

Meanwhile, back in the states, Evil-Human-Caused Climate Change created the opposite situation, with a nasty hurricane slamming the Florida Panhandle and matching Florence with its impact on Richmond.  Drought, storms – anything and everything can be blamed on warming temps (convenient), and the alarmists were out with another report that the end is nigh.

Flood levels recorded on Passau Rathaus (City Hall)

Then again, perhaps its all just normal variations.  Neither droughts or hurricanes are new and with a scale that goes up to five we’ve yet to see a hurricane that hits Spinal Tap’s eleven.  While the Dunube is low now, at Passau we were shown dramatic evidence of past floods, the most recent and second highest in 2013.

The fault of industrialization and fossil fuels?  Check out the year for the highest recorded, 1501, and the many others of similar impact during pre- or early-industrial times.  For North America, of course, there are at best only 200 years of records and perhaps 100 years of good ones.  Thomas Jefferson’s personal records pick up the ending of the so-called Little Ice Age.  Nasty hurricanes plagued the Jamestown settlement.

Getting off the river to drive for hours on the autobahns gave me a chance to see the extensive solar panels in Germany and the massive wind turbine installations in Hungary, visible again from the air during our departure.  Their addition to the landscape did not reduce the beauty of the scenery.

Turbines visible from a rest stop along the highway inside Hungary.

There is no question we need to move quickly away from burning filthy coal and increase the percentage of energy generated from sun and wind.  I still consider natural gas a good substitute for coal and a necessary part of the mix.   But do everything the environmentalists want and the hurricanes will continue, the floods and droughts will continue, and You Know Who provided excellent advice 2,100 years ago about building on rock, not sand, as recorded by Saint Matthew.

Viking is moving more emphasis onto its ocean cruise business, perhaps as a hedge against continued challenges on the rivers.  Odds are the rivers will be back up in a year or so and the concern will shift back to floods.  If indeed the climate is changing, and it seems to be, I just don’t buy that human activity is the single or dominant cause, or that adjustments now will make much difference down the road.

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34 responses to “Global Climate Catastrophe (in 1501?)”

  1. For North America, of course, there are at best only 200 years of records and perhaps 100 years of good ones.

    And only 30 or so of really good records based on satellite sensing.

  2. “Relentless” Viking is the right word!

    As for “I just don’t buy that human activity is the single or dominant cause, or that adjustments now will make much difference down the road” — I recommend reading this article by Robert Samuelson from the WP this week — he basically says we can’t and won’t mobilize the political will worldwide to make the economic sacrifices necessary to really cut back on carbon emissions, so we might as well resign ourselves to the consequences of a sea level rise — that is: count on it; plan for it. ‘Fraid he’s right. There’s so much we don’t understand about why, long before man-made emissions were a factor, we have had ice ages and great thaws and the sea level rose and fell 200-300 feet above and below where it is today in just a few thousand years (a brief moment on the geological scale. But if the current science is correct, we are dooming the next generation to a sea level rise that will drown coastal cities worldwide, forcing relocations and/or barriers that will cost far, far more to accomplish than reducing carbon emissions now, not to mention the hardships suffered by millions of people along the way.

    It’s a depressing prospect.

    1. TooManyTaxes Avatar

      Accepting arguendo that human behavior is contributing to all or most of the changing climate (and assuming data aren’t being fudged), the discussion is still lackkng.

      What if its less expensive to prohibit all new and rebuilt (not simple repairs) construction in areas expected to be under water unless critical to society than it is to accept the “economic sacrifices” Mr. Samuelson advocates? What if the costs of building and maintaining dikes and floodwalls is less expensive than the cost of the economic sacrifices?

      And, of course, there is no rational discussion of who pays and who benefits? What is the duty of people who own “at or near waterline” property versus people who don’t own such property to pay for/absorb higher costs related to economic sacrifices?

      And, once again, if we cannot address smaller environmental problems, such as the City of Alexandria dumping raw *&^% into the Potomac River, why would anyone expect government to fix global warming.

      I support a market-based shift from fossil fuels to other sources of energy. I think we need to be careful of anything we emit into the air or dump into bodies of water. But I also know that there are a lot of rent seekers and power grabbers out there. Let’s operate at a higher intellectual and moral standard than the Washington Post and have a discussion about all of the issues. I sure don’t have all the answers but I doubt anyone else does either.

      1. We’re in substantial agreement. The notion that the Paris Accord was ever going to reign in Chinese and Indian and Indonesian emissions in the short run was absurd; the debate has been, what are the likely long term cost tradeoffs from greenhouse gas reduction, but I think we should also be debating, are the short term health/environmental benefits from reducing fossil fuel consumption so sufficiently worth achieving on their own anyway that we should get started immediately, because if so that moots the long term question. And Alexandria is a good example of how even obvious environmental fixes are difficult as hell politically.

        And if those short term emissions reduction benefits are worth achieving, I say let’s go with carbon cap and trade, along the lines of RGGI but with the goal a national or even hemispheric/NAFTA basis, which to my view is the option with the least opportunity for rent-seeking abuse out there and with the broadest likely impact on air pollution, which is the broadest of problems because it does not respect political boundaries or local economic conditions.

        As for allocating the cost of sea-level-rise impacts — Steve had a good point when he pointed to the complete absence of flood insurance in Hungary. Why should the federal government underwrite the enormous cost of preserving Hampton Roads’ current shoreline, or the beach houses from Duck to Ocracoke, or the Shore communities of New Jersey and Florida? Where are the incentives for local townships and developers NOT to abuse this giveaway? Obviously there will come a day when major relocations require government involvement, but at the outset our flood insurance policies are only making the problem worse.

        1. TooManyTaxes Avatar

          Any cap and trade program must be limited to major parties that actually emit carbon and not investors. Otherwise we will have rent seekers on steroids. If I run a business that has a significant carbon footprint and I invest in measures that make significant reductions in carbon emissions, I could sell my excess emission credits. If you need to emit more than you have in credits, you can buy from me.

          But let Wall Street buy and sell credits and the price will not reflect supply and demand.

          I see nothing from environmentalists that would lead me to believe they wouldn’t be happy to see Wall Street involvement as that would likely drive up the price of fossil fuels. So if I’m correct, what’s the difference between Wall Street and the environmentalists?

          I could see a phase out of taxpayer subsidies for flood insurance.

  3. LarrytheG Avatar

    The folks at Mesa Verde and other cliff dwellings out west seem pretty sure it was a mega drought around 1200-1300 that caused their abandonment.

    I’m coming to the realization that skeptics are never going to accept that there is a nexus between climate change and mankind activities that cause it.

    And part of it is that most people cannot really conceive of how climate actually works over long, long periods of time. We all or most of us drive our cars and in the process burn trillions of gallons of gasoline that supposedly is the result of dead dinosaurs and swamps long ago… In fact there are skeptics about that also… it turns out.

    So many of the “skeptics” do actually believe that climate change happens and is happening but they’re not buying the connection to burning fossil fuels.

    So their view is that, yes, we’re going to see droughts and hurricanes and mega-storms and yes we will have to pay to rebuild . stronger building codes, buildings on stilts, highways converted to causeways..etc…

    it’s just not in some folks DNA to accept science.

    It’s not only with climate. We don’t trust vaccinations, don’t believe DDT hurts critters, or particulate matter kills kids and elders… Scientists are lying SOBs and we have to depend on FOX and Breitbart to tell us the truth!

    So basically, we are doomed if the Scientists are right.

    We’ll hear shortly how much the last hurricane cost us and how much further the FEMA flood insurance will be financially underwater but those are just pesky annoyances…

    The really bad stuff won’t happen overnight. It will be beyond most of our lifetimes and it will be up to the kids today (you know the ones who WE fret about passing on our intergenerational debt) , to deal with it. Affordable College, bad regulations and bankrupt Medicare will be the least of their problems!

  4. Steve Haner Avatar
    Steve Haner

    Wish I could remember the title of an excellent sci-fi novel that was based on the premise that the carbon pollution was the only thing holding back that ice age the alarmists were calling for 50 years ago. The world stopped polluting and then froze solid. I do remember the title of a recent popular physics book, “We Have No Idea”, which was about particle physics and cosmology but the same level of humility should be applied to all of this stuff too. We have no idea about a system as complex as the world’s weather.

    1. Steve Haner Avatar
      Steve Haner

      Forgot to mention that we were told in Passau there is zero subsidized flood insurance. Those who have property closest to the river just build up savings accounts waiting for the inevitable or take their chances. At higher levels you can get insurance but at a very high price, higher than most will pay. We think they are overly-socialist in Germany but they apparently don’t use other people’s money to subsidize building in known flood zones.

      1. I completely agree with their approach. Flood insurance is a way of socializing the consequential cost of building where you shouldn’t be allowed to build in the first place.

  5. djrippert Avatar

    I have slowly moved from skeptic to believer. Two main reasons:

    1. Observational – humans have managed to create acid rain which negatively impacted many waterways; there is a floating island of plastic in the Pacific Ocean as big as the state of Texas; The Chesapeake Bay used to have water as clear as a topical ocean, today you can’t see through 2 feet of the stuff. All of this was caused by human activity. Why is it so hard to believe that 200+ years of human industrial production, electricity consumption, etc could have changed Earth’s atmosphere in a material way.

    2. Philosophical. What are the penalties for guessing wrong about the causes of climate change? If it is human caused failing to act could have catastrophic consequences, especially in a place like Virginia with so much low lying land. If humans didn’t cause global warming they still did create acid rain and other environmental problems. Reducing human generated changes to the atmosphere has many corollary benefits even if humans aren’t causing global warming.

  6. Steve Haner Avatar
    Steve Haner

    DJ – On number one, of course it has. Of course human activity is part of the problem, and with plastic trash and runoff into waterways and similar pollution we are 100 percent of the problem. But there are forces at work on the general climate way beyond that. On number two, I agree we should move promptly toward less pollution, less use of things we burn for energy. But to follow the harshest advice of the alarmists will have major economic consequences.

    1. Reed Fawell 3rd Avatar
      Reed Fawell 3rd

      I suspect Haner has got it about right. The Grapes that met the Vikings in Greenland around late middle ages tell that story, as did all that moving ice killing off humans on the British Isles so many dozens of times within last 700,000 years, particularly most recently. Today our oldest genetic line still extant from indigenous Brits only goes back 7,000 years, it’s that bad.

      For sure, one way or another, mass disasters are coming at us. The great killers to date have all been ice. Heat now may be our blessing in short to mid term, at least.

      Sorry to hear about your “cruise” through Budapest. I spent weeks there looking down on that Danube riverside Parliament in early 1990’s, s0 I can’t imagine what confronted you. A big refund is in order.

    2. Re: “to follow the harshest advice of the alarmists will have major economic consequences” — the consequences of not following that advice need to be weighed. That is the problem in economic terms: those consequential costs are way out there and their present value is smaller, but still huge, when you take into account the population relocations involved. Think of what it would cost to relocate every part of Hampton Roads that would be impacted by a 10 foot rise in sea level. Now, apply that same calculation to the Ganges delta in Bangladesh.

      1. Reed Fawell 3rd Avatar
        Reed Fawell 3rd

        Bingo – we are all on a fool errand if we try being the little Dutch Boys with both thumbs in the little dam holding back God’s growing flood. Or better and more closely stated, we are all fools if we give all our money away now to posturing little Dutch boy experts disguising themselves as gods. My God, we can’t even keep our school houses in repair, or teach kids!!!!!!

      2. TooManyTaxes Avatar

        Then shouldn’t we begin taking small steps now. Identify likely areas of “permanent” higher water. Inventory what has been built there. Identify what structures are essential to remain in those locations, such as a Naval Base or an operating dock. Prepare plans to protect essential facilities from higher water. Adopt changes in laws and regulations that prohibit new, non-essential construction in “high water areas” and that limit what types of additions, reconstruction, etc. can be made to non-essential structures in high water areas.

        Presumably insurance companies will increase rates for properties located in high water areas and, ultimately, stop writing policies. Overtime, we will see abandonment of old buildings located in high water areas.

        Identify the public costs for these programs and institute taxes on property owners likely to be affected significantly by rising waters.

        Continue to see more energy generated from renewable sources. Investigate possible price fixing for energy-efficient products and services. I suspect the price of LED lighting is designed to recover the missed sales of incandescent bulbs, rather than the cost of manufacturing.

        Institute federal tax reform such that any organization that pays for lobbying or otherwise influencing government (either in-house and/or with paid agents) lose their tax-free status. I suspect this would result in a measurable increase in federal revenues.

        1. Exactly right; but this requires local authorities to a) adopt (and publicly admit it’s the basis for acting) the premise that the average sea level is increasing, b) act on that premise by taking actions that decrease the assessed value, and therefore the property tax levied upon, the properties involved, and c) take actions that can be, and initially probably will be, challenged as unconstitutional “takings” and as arbitrary and capricious (“why my property and not yours?”) by property owners who in some cases have been there for decades.

          We have so polarized a) that it’s just about impossible for a local politician to do. And b) is painful to any local politician anytime. And c) will be expensive for the first, pioneer jurisdictions that have to fight the cases in which State precedent is worked out.

          Nobody “likes” the feds when they do things like this but it will go a lot faster and with less controversy if the feds “make” the State authorities kowtow to some new federal requirements than if the State authorities have to step out there on their own. Perhaps the Chesapeake Bay compact can serve as an alternative model here for the coastline States — again, once a group of States adopt a compact, that allows the individual States later to blame someone else: “they made us do it.” Lessons learned from the clean air and water debates apply in spades here.

          1. Reed Fawell 3rd Avatar
            Reed Fawell 3rd

            Details, Details, – I guess we’re gonna need a President with a pen and a phone to cut through all the crappy details like constitutional rights.

    3. Inthemiddle Avatar

      I understand the importance of challenging the hypothesis that human activity is the main cause of current global warming.

      But the linked article has an interesting chart that supports the hypothesis and challenges the assertion that current climate change is just part of a natural cycle.

      1. Steve Haner Avatar
        Steve Haner

        Dealing with “reconstructed” data creates problems for both our arguments, but I do see a chart that shows significant variations that cannot be blamed on human activity.

      2. Reed Fawell 3rd Avatar
        Reed Fawell 3rd

        Terrific Wikipedia article, it explains a lot, for example:

        “Historians have argued that cultural responses to the consequences of the Little Ice Age in Europe consisted of violent scapegoating …Communities often lashed out via violent crimes, including robbery and murder; sexual offense accusations increased as well, such as adultery, bestiality, and rape. Europeans sought explanations for the famine, disease, and social unrest that they were experiencing, leading to the act of placing blame upon the innocent. Evidence from several studies indicate that increases in violent actions against marginalized groups that were held responsible for the Little Ice Age overlap with years of particularly cold, dry weather.

        One example of the violent scapegoating occurring during the Little Ice Age was the resurgence of witchcraft trials, as argued by Oster (2004) and Behringer (1999). Oster and Behringer argue that this resurgence was brought upon by the climatic decline.

        Prior to the Little Ice Age, “witchcraft” was considered an insignificant crime and victims were rarely accused. But beginning in the 1380s, just as the Little Ice Age began, European populations began to link magic and weather-making. The first systematic witch hunts began in the 1430s, and by the 1480s it was widely believed that witches should be held accountable for poor weather.

        Witches were blamed for direct and indirect consequences of the Little Ice Age: livestock epidemics, cows that gave too little milk, late frosts, and unknown diseases. In general, as the temperature dropped, the number of witchcraft trials rose, and trials decreased when temperature increased. The peaks of witchcraft persecutions overlap with hunger crises that occurred in 1570 and 1580, the latter lasting a decade. These trials primarily targeted poor women, many of whom were widows. Not everybody agreed that witches should be persecuted for weather-making, but such arguments primarily focused not upon whether witches existed, but upon whether witches had the capability to control the weather. The Catholic Church in the Early Middle Ages argued that witches could not control the weather because they were mortals, not God, but by the mid-thirteenth century most populations agreed with the idea that witches could control natural forces.

        Historians have argued that Jewish populations were also blamed for climatic deterioration during the Little Ice Age …” END QUOTE

        Obviously, little has changed over the centuries, except the Witches have turned into the White Males, and the Catholic Church has morphed into the Democratic Party.

        Hence Brett Kavanaugh’s bizarre sex habits and fetishes can be directly blamed on the global warming caused by D. Trump, likely too combination with the Tides and full Moon cycles, all these evil forces working in tandem on the phobias of the liberal progressive psyches, always unstable at best, even under perfect conditions.

    4. Jane Twitmyer Avatar
      Jane Twitmyer

      OK … This crazy old radical green liberal has to put in a few words … We can’t rely on gas for electricity for long. Here is why.

      The conclusion now is that cutting methane dramatically is a really good way forward. “Because methane only lasts for a decade or so in the atmosphere, reducing emissions can have a near-immediate impact on slowing the rate of warming. This is critical for reducing the impacts that we’re already seeing, such as sea level rise and worsened extreme weather events. “

      First, there is the question of how much gas is really available at a reasonable price 15-20 years down the road. Expensive plant and pipeline infrastructure is built for 40 years of use. From the David Hughes analysis of shale gas … “The Appalachian plays are the main driver for shale gas production growth – the Marcellus and Utica now account for 48% of U.S. shale gas production. EIA forecasts for the Marcellus and Utica, which project these will provide 52% of cumulative production of U.S. shale gas through 2050, are rated as extremely optimistic.” The EIA numbers are inflated, not understanding the 3-5 year good productive life of a shale well.

      “The high to extremely optimistic EIA AEO 2017 projections impart an unjustified level of comfort for long-term energy sustainability. As sweet spots are exhausted, the reality is likely to be much higher costs and higher drilling rates to maintain production and/or stem declines. … the U.S. would be well advised to plan for much reduced shale oil and gas production in the long term based on this analysis of play fundamentals.”

      The second issue … Everyone jumped on gas to replace coal because gas emits 50% less GHG when burned as compared with coal plants. Two problems with that … lots of methane is emitted at the wellhead and from pipelines … enough to make up for the better burning emissions rate … AND … a professor at Cornell produced a study of methane’s contribution to Climate Change in 2013-4. His conclusion … methane is actually 85 times, not 25 times, worse for the climate. Methane remains in the atmosphere for only 15 years so the comparison, which was calculated on the 100-year basis, makes gas look better than it is. CO2 remains in the atmosphere 100+ years
      (“A bridge to nowhere: methane emissions and the greenhouse gas footprint of natural gas” by Robert W. Howarth Department of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York 14853)

      Gas is still required in the transition but we would be well advised not to count on long-term reliance on gas and put gas plants on the ‘phase out’ list.

      1. Reed Fawell 3rd Avatar
        Reed Fawell 3rd

        Hey, Jane, here is real bummer you guys: see

        These coal hot spots keep flaring up all over round the world. How we gonna tamp all this new found ambition in far away places before its curtains? It’s like gas is least of our worries.

        1. Jane Twitmyer Avatar
          Jane Twitmyer

          China and India have begun to cut down on buildings coal plants and understand they must. The rest of Asia hasn’t stepped up YET

          Aug. 16, 2018 (IEEFA) — China’s investment in foreign wind-powered electricity markets has surpassed US$12 billion in Europe and Australia alone as private and stated-owned Chinese companies move aggressively to capitalize on fast-growing renewable energy markets.
          “China is now a driver of the European energy transformation, and its international leadership in low emissions sectors of the future are entirely aligned with efforts to increase China’s global economic influence,” said Simon Nicholas, a Sydney-based IEEFA energy analyst.
          India’s thermal power giant NTPC Ltd has reportedly shelved 10.5 GW of its planned coal-fired power projects year-to-date. Project cancellations are coming faster as financial viability remains dubious and India increases its low-cost renewable installations

          How to stop it … Force banks not to invest … In effort to bolster a global shift to clean energy, the World Bank—which provides financial, advisory and technical support to developing countries—announced it will “no longer finance upstream oil and gas, after 2019.”

          Norway and others have stepped up BUT “Institutions including JP Morgan Chase, TD Bank, and Bank of America increased their funding of dirty energy by 11 percent from 2016 to 2017, flouting the Paris Climate Agreement.” The tar sands sector, known as the dirtiest source of energy on the planet, received major support from banks last year, with financing going up by 111 percent to $98 billion. JP Morgan Chase quadrupled its funding of the industry, a year after researchers found tar sands operations were a major cause of pollution.

          Dirty energy projects funded by financial institutions in 2017 included the Line 3 Tar Sands pipeline proposed by Enbridge, which TD Bank, Citibank, Royal Bank of Canada, and MUFBGall invest in; and new coal plants expected to be build across Southeast Asia, bankrolled by Mizuho, MUFG, and SMFG.

    5. Jane Twitmyer Avatar
      Jane Twitmyer

      More from the Green Lady refuting .. “If indeed the climate is changing, and it seems to be, I just don’t buy that human activity is the single or dominant cause, or that adjustments now will make much difference down the road.”

      No one claims that GHG emissions are only caused by human activity but the claim is now 2/3rd. Here is why they make that claim at UCS … “Scientists can tease apart how much CO2 comes from natural sources, and how much comes from combusted fossil fuel sources. Compared to other carbon sources, carbon from fossil fuels has a distinctly different “signature,” essentially the relative amount of heavier or lighter atoms of carbon (technically δ13C). The more negative the δ13C, the higher the proportion of carbon from fossil fuels.

      And when all the natural and human-induced climate drivers are compared to one another, the dramatic accumulation of carbon from human sources is by far the largest climate change driver over the past half century.” Note the time frame for human activity as the primary driver … the last 50 years!

      And regarding taking meaningful action …. See the methane idea above … and yes action to reduce CO2 emissions will not change things right away. Unlike water or particulate pollution, CO2 lasts in the atmosphere for hundreds to thousands of years. It doesn’t get better when you finally stop emitting it. Heat remains trapped in the atmosphere by those green house gases released over the last 100 years. BUT it will make a difference eventually and we must do it.

  7. Re: Jamestown , I believe it was extended severe drought which ended the Jamestown settlement, due to lack of decent drinking water. So they moved inland towards Richmond. The rest is history.

    PS- I am glad the UN recently said in 10-years we will see the terrible impacts of climate change. In 1970, I said in a high school term paper it would be before Year 2000. So if we make it 10-years, we are out of the immediate disaster scenario.

    1. Reed Fawell 3rd Avatar
      Reed Fawell 3rd

      Yeah, I think some 10% survived at best, despite 3 resupplies. Then moving upriver toward Richmond, the savages, (yes savages) nearly killed them all off. Those sailing east over to eastern shore did little better, mostly just disease killed the great majority of them. Only the few, the lucky, a very tough survived.

      1. Bring back Henricopolis.

  8. There is a lot of info in tree rings, arctic ice and other sources. If the science is right, we are not reacting fast enough and need to be moving on de-carbonization rather than just the trendy focus on renewables.

    1. LarrytheG Avatar

      @Izzo – agree. unfortunately – until a strong majority feels that way – we are doomed… and Solar alone even with strong demand-side technology – will still leave us with having to provide electricity at night.

      I keep pointing out here that there are over 10,000 islands in the world that are actually populated and the vast, vast majority of them produce most of their electricity by burning diesel oil brought in on ships…not solar and not wind and not batteries that store solar/wind and used at night… it’s STILL diesel oil!!! Oh… and the bigger irony? Quite a few of these islands are going to be submerged by rising oceans but not before the structures on them are battered to rubble by bigger and much badder uber storms…we are now seeing.

      We lose 15 people to one of these storms and it’s a national tragedy … other countries lose thousands and it barely makes the news in the US.

  9. Steve Haner Avatar
    Steve Haner

    Just really wanted to show off some trip photos but I started a nice little BR argument….:)

    1. The argument you’ve started here is whether to take that next cruise on Viking!

      1. Steve Haner Avatar
        Steve Haner

        They just came through with a very nice voucher for a future trip, which is a fine settlement for us. But in retrospect there were plenty of stories on the web starting in July about the problem and I just never checked….It’s a good company. We’ll do one again. It’s fun talking to the guides.

      2. I doubt their next brochure will feature that “ghost ship” tied up in Budapest.

        The larger problem for Viking, the risk of predicting climate and the resulting weather months in advance, has to be built into their financial model, as your refund voucher illustrates. But you’ve touched off a good discussion of the problem for all of us, and our children — especially in light of JB’s recent post on increasingly frequent flooding in Norfolk.

  10. LarrytheG Avatar

    re: Viking… Like Medicare… a LOT of my friends also take Viking Trips! And though they said they liked them – they did not RAVE about them… the best I get is “It was nice”. 😉

    So we just got back from a motor raft trip on the Grand Canyon – and all I can say is that it was a “nice” trip! 😉

    re: Djrippert “conversion”. He makes a good point about acid rain. there are other like the Ozone Hole which there are also “skeptics” and “alarmists”.

    Steve talks about plastic in the ocean – it’s a great example of how mankind activities ..infinitesimally small as a plastic cup by you or I ends up choking entire beaches and harbors YET we apparently cannot see that same kind of powerful effect in action with something like carbon pollution of which all us contributes far more than the equivalent of a plastic cup.

    The ocean, for instance, is becoming more acid -even as it is expanding in volume… coral reefs are dying..around the world… glaciers are receding -pretty much around the world… we can measure these things… we KNOW they are changing… but skeptics do not believe we are the cause of it – and many never will… just as many do not believe that DDT did not cause harm to birds, or CFCs the Ozone hole or car and coal pollution actually do kill the young, elderly, and sick… it’s all “on paper” just what science guy claims ….and we know that science is chock full of lying SOBs…

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