Warm? You want warm? - Granite Grok

Warm? You want warm?

From National Geographic, I found this:

An ancient period of global warming spurred the world’s first primates to spread from Asia to North America, new research shows.

The article then went on to discuss mammal migration across North America:

Gingerich’s team concludes that the tiny primates first appeared in China at the beginning of an ancient warming period that began 55 million years ago.

The animals appeared in Europe slightly later and then made their way to North America 20,000 years into the warming event.

"So you have a suggestion that it’s appearing earlier in China than in Europe, and earlier in Europe than in North America," Gingerich said.

In addition, he says, the Chinese animals appear to be more primitive than the European ones, which in turn appear more primitive than North American specimens.

Well, this blog is not generally in the topic of discussing mammalian migrations as a general theme, but one thing did catch my eye:

Ancient Global Warming

The ancient global warming period, known to scientists as the Paleocene/Eocene Thermal Maximum, lasted approximately 100,000 years.

During the first 20,000 years, the Earth warmed by about 9 degrees Fahrenheit (5 degrees Celsius) before returning to previous levels.

Gee, something positive from a warming trend happened? 

 I hear constantly from the MSM that the world is getting hotter; at this point, about 1 degree over the last century. And the computer models project a continuing rise of temperatures as well, and touts that all "credible scientists agree that man is making it worse" (ABC Good Morning on this morning’s broadcast). Yet, there ARE credible folks that do disagree with that assessment.

I have a problem with this – the earth may be warming and I am willing to give up that point.  I do remember, however, that during the 70’s that the shrill call was for a new Ice Age that was coming (and bringing a similar level of death and destruction forecasts that the new Warm Period will bring). 

I look at the last quote from the article and ask "Why isn’t this getting more play, why isn’t this current period period being put into more of a context given the known history?"  The earth has had both cooler and warmer periods of time – pretty much most of them without our assistance at all. We hear about the negatives – seldom about the positives that a warming might bring as well.  I guess "if it bleeds, it leads" can be applied to a thermometer as well.

As far as I know right now, I don’t believe that our science knows enough about the different global cycles and mechanisms (atmospheric and oceanic) to effectively model them all.  Or that we have a sufficient number of data points over a sufficient time frame to reliably point to a real future conclusion.  After all, when Mount Pinatubo blew, it lowered global temps by about a degree world wide – how does one factor that in?

More later on, with more details and citations.

My first question also leads to another one:  if man is responsible for global warming today, why are the polar ice caps on Mars shrinking?