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AN EXTINCTION OF LOGIC?. Dr. Patrick J. Michaels Senior Fellow in Environmental Studies Cato Institute Professor of Environmental Sciences University of Virginia. EXTINCTIONS AND CLIMATE CHANGE . • Counter-Paradigm View Until Global Warming Became Popular

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slide1

AN EXTINCTION OF LOGIC?

Dr. Patrick J. Michaels

Senior Fellow in Environmental Studies

Cato Institute

Professor of Environmental Sciences

University of Virginia

slide2

EXTINCTIONS AND CLIMATE CHANGE

• Counter-Paradigm View Until Global Warming

Became Popular

• Instead, Extinctions Were Largely Driven by

Population Dynamics and Competitive Exclusion

• Pendulum Will Eventually Swing More to the Middle

slide6

1

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8

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Temperature Departure (°C)

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2

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Year

IPCC Northern Hemisphere Temperature History

.

slide9

SEVERAL IMPORTANT RECENT PAPERS

• Parmesan, C., 1996. Climate and species’ range. Nature, 382, 765-766.

• Parmesan, C., et al., 1999. Poleward shifts in geographical ranges of butterfly species associated with regional warming. Nature, 399, 579–580.

slide10

CONCLUSIONS

•Butterflies going extinct in Northern Mexico because of Climate Change

•Butterflies are expanding in British Columbia because of Climate Change

slide11

Parmesan, 1996 Butterfly Census Sites

Red triangle = absence

Blue triangle = presence

slide13

UNITED NATIONS’ TEMPERATURE HISTORY

ZONE OF MAXIMUM EXTINCTION

Northern Mexico

slide14

UNITED NATIONS’ TEMPERATURE HISTORY

ZONE OF MAXIMUM EXPANSION

Southern British Columbia

slide15

TEMPERATURE CHANGE, HIGH-EXTINCTION GRIDCELLS

Southern California minus rural Northern Mexico

slide16

FINDINGS FOR

EUROPEAN BUTTERFLIES

slide17

NORTHERN END OF RANGE

• 65% of species extended range northward

• 35% exhibited no change

• 2% exhibited no change

slide18

SOUTHERN END OF RANGE

• 5% shifted south

• 22% shifted northward

• 72% remained stable

slide19

CONCLUSION

Butterfly Diversity Increasing!

slide20

WORLD WILDLIFE FUND, 1996

PREDICTION: “Drier weather…could be particularly severe for birds in the Plains States of Canada and the United States [since] half of all North American ducks breed in prairie pothole wetlands that could disappear as a result of global warming.”

slide21

FACT:

United Nations Precipitation Data

North Central U.S. and South Central Canada

slide22

Gibbs, J. P., and A. R. Breisch. 2001. Climate warming and calling phenology of frogs near Ithaca, New York, 1900-1999. Conservation Biology,15, 1175-1178.

PREDICTION: November-June warming is making frogs around Ithaca, New York croak earlier in the spring. Compared 1900-1912 to the 1990s.

slide23

FACT:

There’s no significant difference in temperature

in the periods studied

slide24

Kiesecker, J. M., A. R. Blaustein, and L. K. Belden. 2001. Complex causes of amphibian population declines. Nature,410, 681-684.

CONCEPT: Ultraviolet radiation is damaging toad eggs in ponds in Oregon’s Cascade Range between 1990 and 1999 because of decreasing water levels caused by lowered precipitation in the winter.

slide25

FACTS:

There’s no trend in October-March in the Cascades. Five of the last six years in the study period had above-average rainfall. What about the entire period from 1912-45, which was drier than any other?

October-March Precipitation, Oregon Cascades

Source: U.S. National Climatic Data Center

slide26

MARQUEE SPECIES

Penguins and Polar Bears

slide27

WORLD WILDLIFE FUND, 2000:

Polar Bears at Risk.

slide28

• 20 populations of Polar Bears

• 46% stable, 17% in decline,

14% increasing, 23% “unknown”

Strange Math!

slide29

ARCTIC TEMPERARTURE TRENDS

1950-1995

Przybylak, International Journal of Climatology, 2000.

POLAR BEAR

POPULATION TRENDS

World Wildlife Foundation

Yellow = unknown; green = stable

blue = decreasing; red = increasing

Yellow=no data;green=no significant change

blue=cooling;red= warming

slide31

.8

.6

.4

.2

0

Temperature Departure (°C)

-.2

-.4

-.6

-.8

-1

1955

1960

1965

1970

1975

1980

1985

1990

1995

2000

Year

.

Antarctic Temperature History (1956-2000)

slide32

-4

Summer

-6

in Colony (°C)

Average Temperature

-14

-16

Winter

-18

-20

6000

5000

Breeding Pairs

4000

3000

2000

1955

1960

1965

1970

1975

1980

1985

1990

1995

2000

Temperature History and Penguin Breeding Success

slide33

Root, T.L., et al., 2003. Fingerprints of global warming on wild animals and plants. Nature, 421, 57-60.

Parmesan, C., and G. Yohe, 2003. A globally coherent fingerprint of climate change impacts across natural systems. Nature, 421, 37-42.

CONCEPTS: changes in the distribution of species are consistent with warming. Covered prominently by both New York and Los Angeles Times.

slide34

FACTS:

No one, author or reporter,

bothered to note the implications of the math.

• Root: Average northward movement is 3.8 miles per decade, or 2,000 feet per year. This would put Washington DC’s biota in Baltimore around 2102.

•Parmesan: At the current rate of change, spring, 2103 in Washington will arrive at the same time it does now in Raleigh, North Carolina.

(Climate models generally predict constant, not increasing rates of warming)

slide36

Thomas, C.D., et al, 2004. Extinction risk from climate change. Nature427, 145-148

QUOTE OF THOMAS IN WASHINGTON POST:

“We’re talking about 1.25 million species. It’s a massive number.”

QUOTE FROM PAPER: “Estimates for minimum expected climate change [‘0.8-1.7˚C’-p.147] are 9-13% extinction with dispersal and 22-31% without dispersal.”

slide37

FACT:

We’ve already had this change. Where was the mass extinction from climate change? How could the reviewers miss this?