Monthly Archives: February 2010

Greenhouse effect revisited…

Every once in a while it is worth reviewing the basic physics behind the greenhouse effect and global warming. Sometimes all the debate about global warming in the media loses focus of the fact that the world really is governed by the laws of physics. Unfortunately, many internet explanations get dumbed down to the point of having an atmosphere that serves as a single “slab” between the ground and space, and has a bunch of colorful arrows coming out of it and bouncing off it, etc. This is a useless explanation, and gives no justice to understanding what is happening. Two encounters in the outside world recently prompted me to do another post just to have a reference handy, and I’m using this to replace an older post which I entitled “just a few more molecules.” There’s also been an interesting episode with Dr. Andy Lacis from NASA GISS over at Dot Earth which I’d like to elaborate on.

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Stephen Colbert, the Dopplest 9000, and skeptic logic

Proof that the sun has been destroyed

Isotopes and Maple Syrup

I thought that this article was interesting, discussing this recent paper in the Journal of Agricultural and Food chemistry. The analysis revealed that the relative amount of carbon-13 in maple syrup have gone down since the 1970s, which they attribute to changing isotopic signatures from fossil fuel burning in the atmosphere. Discussion and implications for the food industry in the article.