Carbon dioxide "driving fish crazy"

Pissed again…

You have to hand it to the humble CO2 molecule, it certainly is multi-talented. Not only can a few extra measly parts per million allegedly wreck the climate of a planet that has been in existence for 4.5 billion years, and turn the oceans into corrosive battery acid, but it can make fish drunk as well:

Rising human carbon dioxide emissions may be affecting the brains and central nervous system of sea fishes with serious consequences for their survival, an international scientific team has found.

Carbon dioxide concentrations predicted to occur in the ocean by the end of this century will interfere with fishes’ ability to hear, smell, turn and evade predators, says Professor Philip Munday of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies and James Cook University.

“For several years our team have been testing the performance of baby coral fishes in sea water containing higher levels of dissolved CO2 — and it is now pretty clear that they sustain significant disruption to their central nervous system, which is likely to impair their chances of survival,” Prof. Munday says. (source)

Mine’s a CO2 and tonic, please. No ice (‘cos it’s all melted).

More alien nonsense

Science fiction

Thinking about the alien invaders story some more (although I have no idea why), it becomes obvious that the entire premise is flawed anyway.

Even assuming that “aliens” can detect our changing atmosphere, the information would travel at the speed of light to the alien planet/spaceship, which must then travel at a fraction of the speed of light to reach Earth.

The closest star with a known planetary system is 15 light years away (see here), or in old money, 142 trillion kilometres (142 with twelve zeros). Voyager 1 is currently travelling at 62,000 km/h away from Earth, and even at that speed would take 260 thousand years to travel 15 light years. So even assuming our environmentally conscious aliens:

  • live on the closest planetary system to our own, AND
  • have been monitoring the atmosphere of a rather small, rocky planet orbiting a rather ordinary star, AND
  • have the technology to detect a 100ppm increase in CO2 from Earth’s emission spectrum, AND
  • have the same useless climate models we have here, AND
  • have the misfortune to count among their number the alien equivalent of James Hansen, who finds this treatment of a foreign planet abhorrent, AND
  • set off immediately on receiving this shocking information, intent on saving the Earth, AND
  • have the technology to travel at even 100 times as fast as the fastest human space vehicle everAND
  • are able to transport the numbers of invaders and weaponry required to subdue nearly 7 billion Earthlings,

they would still not arrive for at least 2,600 years.

And these researchers call themselves “scientists”? Actually, it has given me an idea: perhaps we could send all our climate alarmists off in a capsule to save some extrasolar planets instead, and leave the rest of us alone. Isn’t that a nice thought?

Climate Madness of the Year: tackle climate change to prevent alien attack

"This is a stick up. Give us all your petrol!"

I seriously had to check the calendar to make sure it wasn’t April Fools Day, such is the ludicrousness of this story.

In an ever more desperate attempt to justify action on climate change (which will achieve precisely nothing), “researchers”, and I use that term in its loosest possible sense, from NASA and Penn State conclude:

“Green” aliens might object to the environmental damage humans have caused on Earth and wipe us out to save the planet. “These scenarios give us reason to limit our growth and reduce our impact on global ecosystems. It would be particularly important for us to limit our emissions of greenhouse gases, since atmospheric composition can be observed from other planets.” (source)

And they accuse the sceptics of being mentally unhinged?

P.S. I assume those “researchers” got paid for this. Trough, pigs – again.

UPDATE: See here for a few more flights of fancy on this subject.

Global warming "could enrage sharks"

"Grr, who turned up the heater?"

Enraged goldfish: "Grr, who turned up the heater?"

Stick with it. This journalist clearly hasn’t heard of Climategate and still believes every press release about global warming that lands on his desk.

Warmer ocean temperatures caused by global warming could [important word, that – Ed] cause sharks and other fish to become more aggressive, according to a new Australian study.

Research conducted by the University of New South Wales [Note to self: remember not to send kids to UNSW – Ed] found that a slight lift in water temperatures — just two or three degrees — can cause some fish to become up to 30 times more aggressive than they normally would be.

The studies were conducted on young damsel fish, but head researcher Dr Peter Biro told ninemsn it is possible that sharks could also undergo a similar transformation in warm water.

[And this is what happened next. The poor journo thought the story was just too boring with only damsel fish (whatever they are), so, desperate for an alarmist headline, asked the “scientist” if it would affect sharks, because sharks = scary. And the response below was just what was needed – phew. Scary headline in the bag – Ed]

I would imagine that it might also affect sharks … we think it is linked to the metabolism of the fishes — it increases their need to feed,” Dr Biro said.

The research involved putting the damsel fish in varying temperatures of water and placing other fish behind glass to see how they reacted.

Dr Biro said it was “obvious” the warmer water had an effect.

“Some fish would literally charge at the glass,” he said.

“I’m quite confident that if the glass was not there they would have torn the other fish to shreds.”

So next time you see a flounder getting mugged by a marauding gang of barramundi, you’ll know why.

Read it here.

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