Its all rather manky here: cold, thin snow semi-melted by rain and refrozen. Urgh.
Which brings up the obvious question: if I could suddenly make the world, or at least this little bit of it, 2 degrees warmer all year round, would I be better or worse off? I’m just thinking of direct response, mind you, so leaving out any ecological problems and assuming no change in precipitation. +2 oC would mean that we never had snow and hardly ever had frosts. That latter would make breaking up the soil each winter a bit harder (and would have lots of ecological repercussions, but I’m ignoring them, only thinking of me). But it would make the summers too hot. They already are a bit too hot, every other year has a week (ish) when its hot enough to make it unpleasant to sleep at night. But on balance, I think it would be an overall gain: there is more unpleasantly cold winter than there is unpleasantly hot summer.
Saying things like that inevitably makes me suspected of being an evil septic (even folks at work have started to comment) so I suppose I’ll take a stab at sketching out my position (again). My last go was I’d like us to slow down, step back and take a far longer term perspective on life and values. Vast swathes of things that we currently do simply don’t need to be done at all. I’d like us to do this because we could all be happier, and the environment less damaged. But I don’t see any real chance of this happening, absent some external shock, because sitting quietly tends to get overwhelmed by doing. On the CO2 front, my position is still that a “vast geophysical experiment” is a bad idea: we know enough to know that we don’t know what is going to happen to a sufficient degree of accuracy to know that we’re safe. I think that’s pretty clear. Its a slightly weaker version of what mt has been saying ever since the days when sci.env was worth reading (or posting to). But this is, obviously, a much weaker position than “we’re all going to die/become homeless/be flooded by refugees/become poor from rising sea levels real soon now” or somesuch. I’m sure I had a post somewhere looking at the top reasons why we should worry about climate change, but I can’t find it now, so you’ll have to be content with these ramblings (somewhere in the middle, about Bali).
[Update: (a) with thanks to Eli (b) it was quite beautiful comnig in this morning. But cold.
Or: http://www.dilbert.com/fast/2009-01-05/ -W]