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Discussion > Latest AGW Alarm, Aspen Die Off, courtesy of Anderegg?

In what could be the latest AGW alarm bell comes from research by Stanford University PhD student Andrew Anderegg...PLEASE remind me why THIS name is familiar?

http://www.chron.com/news/article/Drought-may-be-causing-of-Colo-aspen-tree-die-off-2449246.php

Allegedly, one-fifth of Colorado Aspens died off during a regional drought, 2000-4. Caused by AGW. (Imagine that: drought in the US Wet never happened before accelerated anthropogenic CO2...a novel scientific discovery to anyone familiar with Western history, who remember the Great Die-off in the 1880s...drought killed vast portions of open range Western cattle herds:

"...continued overgrazing, combined with drought and the exceptionally severe winter of 1886–87 wiped out much of the open-range cattle business in Montana and the upper Great Plains."
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cattle_drives_in_the_United_States#End_of_the_open_range

Droughts have been deeper and longer in the early part of the 20th century and late 19th century. Therefore the attribution is spurious.

Nonetheless, the headline "Ecologists say..." and call attention to a "new, mysterious illness" involving listening - I kid you not! - to trees dying.... This is great alarmist pseudoscience fodder. Perfect for other dumb bovines, ie those wielding prestigious PhDs!

Jan 9, 2012 at 1:55 AM | Unregistered CommenterOrson

http://www.pnas.org/content/early/2010/06/04/1003187107
links directly to the reason you know the name and to this paper.
I know precious little about aspens in Colorado or anywhere else but I get the feeling that this could be another paper setting out to prove that AGW is suddenly responsible for something that most people who don't live in ivory towers have always known about.

Jan 9, 2012 at 4:55 PM | Unregistered CommenterMike Jackson

Glanced briefly, Orson. The language in the abstract (and the paper) is abysmal.

Since when do we have 'climate change drought' and usual drought? Yech.

Anderegg is shaping up nicely indeed. If things remain the same, he will go far. Just look up Climatic Change for articles by Anderegg - the guy, being a biologist, has already written two puff pieces on 'expert opinion on climate change', purely arising from the fame of his 2010 paper with Jim Prall.

Jan 10, 2012 at 12:58 PM | Unregistered CommenterShub

Did I see another Anderegg in that link?
Nothing like keeping it in the family.

Jan 10, 2012 at 1:53 PM | Unregistered CommenterMike Jackson

Thank you for the look, Shub. Biologists are notoriously trend following, as Julian Simon wrote in response to their attacks on his book utlimate Resource II.

"A large proportion of the attacks have come from biologists, who for many decades and centuries - back to Benjamin Franklin, as discussed on page 000 - have voiced the strongest fears of population growth."
(SEE "A Reply To My Critics")

And in ecology, the field was chastised by McGill University biologist R. H. Peters for failure to do falsifiable or repeatable experiments, thus vitiating the worth of the more non-microbiological fields like wild life ecology.

The above aspen tree piece is junkscience, say we all, then?

Mar 15, 2012 at 12:43 PM | Unregistered CommenterOrson

Orson, Thanks for that link to the article by Julian Simon. Remarkable how many recognisable names pop up on the critics side.

Apr 1, 2012 at 7:34 PM | Unregistered CommenterEddy