Originally Posted by Blameless
That map only shows CO/CO2 concentrations. The reason it's lower in the southern hemisphere is because the majority of people live in the northern hemisphere.
That's a much too reductionist answer, in my opinion. Population is the least important factor. Cultural characteristics of the population is what has the biggest impact on their CO2 footprint. There are plenty of high population countries that do not need to be lumped into the same pile as Western-style heavy consumers.
The oceans absorb a significant portion of atmospheric CO2 for the same reasons that the forests do. Also, there is significantly
less landmass south of the equator, which is another reason you can't just make the link to population and leave it at that. It's the consumption habits of the population that determine their CO2 output, and their preservation of existing plant matter as well.
A lot of people push population control when talking about global warming because it seems like an obvious answer, but any mention of population scares the crap out of people who take this seriously. It's not hard to go from something like this, to something like a world war. Obama blaming Syria on global warming, for instance, probably creates some serious tensions with people who have different perspectives on the climate change issue.
This is, after all, an issue that conflicts with western culture's consumerism and imperialism. America is not and will not lead by example, and it appears to be because America garnishes it's dominance by being the gatekeeper to energy consumption in general. Our economic, militaristic, and technological dominance all stem from our gluttony of carbon fuels in tandem with our game of keep-away for countries that desperately need cheaper energy.
This makes global warming more of a global threat than the global warming itself, because it undermines American dominance. America is struggling to remain on top as it is, and it can't remain on top if it pursues cleaner energy. America gets the cheapest prices on energy of any nation in the entire world, and it uses more energy than any other nation in the world.except China. China, who ironically uses that fuel to provide cheap goods to America instead of tending to their own desperate needs for a higher standard of living.
The simplistic conclusions they suggest people adopt about global warming.. they're highly offensive in my opinion. It's continually turned into a question of faith in science on the news and in politics or even in scientific circles, but it's clearly not as simple as a few statistics. It involves deep moral questions about the direction that has led us here. It brings America's worth as a world leader into a well-justified questioning.
The biggest problems surrounding this issue are the implications of fairness in solving it. Reduction of energy consumption is very much the same as disarmament, from a military point of view. Economy drags, military precedents becomes unsustainable moving forward, and cheating inevitably occurs giving rise to a feeling of military weakness which, in turn, reverses all progress and heightens tensions.
Things just aren't as simple as the science. It's makes me feel like someone's trying to recruit me for a religious crusade because the scripture is surely, surely correct.
More matters than just the scripture, or the science. There's more to the issue, and anyone telling you otherwise holds you (and probably him/her self) in complete and total contempt.Edited by Mookster - 9/28/16 at 12:19pm