back to article Venice not in major peril after all - new research

New research led by an Australian government boffin says that Venice is not, in fact, set to disappear underwater in the near future as a result of global warming. "The survival of Venice and its lagoon is seriously questioned under the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) global sea level rise scenarios," says Dr …


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  1. Anonymous Coward

    Oh dear

    Given the quality and accuracy of previous predictions of climate catastrophe I'd evacuate Venice now.

  2. fixit_f

    What is it with this Lewis bloke?

    Does he specialise in writing stories which basically equate to "Well you know that potential problem people have identified? There's a good chance it might not be so bad"

    I'd like to see him produce a really catastrophic doom and gloom story just to keep people on their toes.

    1. ratfox Silver badge


      Great Britain is in peril! Useful Royal Navy sees budgets reduced to pay for expensive European junk planes for the useless Royal Air Force!

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "Earth's climate evolves"

    Climate's breed? Somebody tell David Attenborough. I'd love to see that!

  4. ClareCares
    Thumb Down

    Anti-Global Warming Sensationalist Reporting

    I object to this sort of sensationalist reporting. Unqualified reports of this nature entirely undermine the debate on global warming. Reading this it would be possible to think that global warming isn’t really happening, which is very misleading.

    1. david 63


      ...did you read the article?

      Did you?

      Let me paraphrase: "A scientist said he doesn't think a disaster is going to happen"...the very counterpart of "we are all doomed" sensationalism.

    2. Liz 1

      Global warming NOT happening in Scotland ...

      and we were looking forward to the better weather!

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      >>"Reading this it would be possible to think that global warming isn’t really happening, which is very misleading."

      Quite right.

      Assuming, of course, that the reader is too thick to recognise underlying basic idea of the report that the climate is expected to change, or is so desperate to pretend it isn't that they'd actually stoop to using a report relying on climate changing to bolster their conclusion that the climate isn't changing.

      Still - a worthwhile report.

      The sooner that incorrect arguments (on any side) are removed from the climate issue, the sooner various people can stop acting like children, pointing to the dumbest things anyone disagreeing with them says and pretending that *those* things being dumb must mean that any arguments from anyone that they dislike are *also* dumb.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Hey now! None of that!

        This is El Reg. There will be NO grown-up behavior is the comments section!

    4. Martin

      But what do you expect at El Reg?

      That's their default position on Global Warming - the scientists are wrong and it's all rubbish.

      Get used to it.

    5. Chris007

      saracasm much!

      I think the downvoters didn't get your sarcasm on this one

      1. Tom 13

        Actually, the problem is

        it is getting more and more difficult to tell the sarcasm from the AGW posters. While I suspect sarcasm, I'm not certain.

    6. Pascal Monett Silver badge
      Thumb Down

      "Unqualified reports of this nature entirely undermine the debate on global warming"

      Yeah, whereas fudging the data to fit preconcieved notions really upholds it.

      You seem to have trouble understanding the scientific approach, which is logical since one has to have a certain level of intelligence to grasp its method.

      Fortunately, it can be resumed in a simple concept : analyze the data every which way you can think of and see what fits with reality. When you have eliminated everything that does not fit, you can start drawing conclusions.

      The problem with the scientific approach is that of the basic human attention span : anything longer than 15 seconds and the average homo sapiens glazes over and goes into a coma.

      Unfortunately, science takes more than 15 seconds to establish the facts, so many, many people take one side and stick to it because the whole issue is way too complicated for the average human brain. And apparently, for some "scientists" as well.

      Climatology has to do with thermodynamics, and any professor worth his salt will tell you that we haven't nailed that domain down yet. So all this climate hoopla is far from over and will only end when every single test had been made, compared to reality, extensively discussed and debated, and proper conclusions drawn.

      Oh, one more thing : all that discussing, debating, comparing and concluding is supposed to be done by scientists, not journalists and very much not commentors.

      Any sane person will know that we have to wait for the proper people to tell us what the facts are. Right now, nobody knows for sure.

      That is why these articles keep cropping up. And they should, because the first rule of science is skepticism.

      1. Anomalous Cowturd

        Who can argue with that? ^^^^^

        Well said, that commentard!


    7. Tom 13

      Did you forget

      the sarc tag?

  5. Mike Bell

    "tideless Mediterranean"

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "tideless Mediterranean"

      Well of course there is rise & fall in the Med. , but it's minor compared to the 3-6m or so that many other places experience twice a day

      1. Matthew Malthouse

        Minor rises

        are significant when your door step is 5cm above mean water level.

  6. armyknife

    Titles are for toffs.

    Interesting thread about LP's military writings:

  7. Anonymous Coward

    Coffee! that the doom is not pending, and the tourist business is going to continue, does that mean they'll stop trying to charge me £20 for a ****ing cup of coffee in the square???

    Surely their water-damage insurance can't be that high, that they need to charge so much???

    Not Troll - think Venician mask.

  8. bill 36

    where do you buy these?

    Crystal balls?

    I'd love one! All these doom and gloom predictions from people who should know better.

    As far as i can see from various reports, average temperatures have risen by about 0.8 of 1 degree in the last 150 years and average summer temperatures in the Arctic have remained almost level.

    I agree the weather is changing and perhaps getting warmer but i'm not buying this CO2 bit.

    It appears that the Earth goes through various warm and cold cycles over thousands of years so why does 150 years of data get everyone in a panic?

    1. Martin

      Take a read of this...

      ...and then tell me you don't buy this CO2 bit.

      I refer you in particular to this sentence...

      "These measurements show that atmospheric CO2 concentrations fluctuated between around 180 and 280 parts per million (ppm) during nearly one million years. This provides an important baseline for understanding our current CO2 level, which is now at 393 ppm"

      You can argue as much as you like about what the effect of the increase in atmospheric CO2 will do. But it's not really realistic to deny that there has been a massive and sudden increase of CO2 in the atmosphere, and it's hard to think of any other reason as to why this might have happened except due to the influence of man.

      1. bill 36

        and you should read this

        This is the problem, is it not, with all religions, the green one included.

        C02 is now THE devil of us all and its being thrown around and preached about until we believe and the converted sound like Presbyterian bible thumpers.

        There is no denying that more C02 in the atmosphere leads to the Earth retaining more heat but are we really responsible when the oceans contain more than 50 times atmospheric C02?

        I understand the science but what i question are the hypothesis because thats exactly what they are.

      2. Martin


        What, exactly, did I get downvoted for?

        What's not to like about a statement of fact (and yes, the statement about the current CO2 level compared to what we have over the last million years or so IS a fact), and a very reasonable deduction from that fact?

        Ah, what the hell. It was probably downvoted by Lewis.

        1. nyelvmark

          What, exactly, did I get downvoted for?

          Perhaps for citing The Guardian as an authority?

          "This is part of a larger body of research that provides a detailed context for understanding the climate changes that we are seeing and experiencing today."

          If you can't see that this is not an objective scientific introduction (it assumes its conclusion before presenting any evidence), then you should stick to reading George Monbiot and his "The science is in" fingers-in-their-ears fanbois.

          Everyone you speak to is happy to agree that the weather today is worse than it was when they were younger. But don't you think that this a subjective phenomenon, analogous to "Kids these days don't speak proper English"? I do. I see nothing in the work of Mann, Bradley, Jones et al to convince me that their long-term climate models are any better than the laughably unreliable short-term models used by meteorologists (go check 5 different sources for a weather forecast for your area tomorrow). They have been accused of cherry-picking data, of using demonstrably invalid statistical techniques, of refusing to release their raw data or methodological source code for other scientists to check their methods, of producing intentionally misleading presentations of their data (the "hockey stick" graph being the most celebrated example), and of attempting to subvert the peer-review process. None of these allegations have been satisfactorily refuted, in my view.

          The IPCC's last report has a section attempting to explain how a doubling of the level of CO2, a trace gas in the atmosphere, could lead to the massive increase in global warming allegedly measured, given that the known properties of CO2 could not lead to this. The section explains that there must be unknown "feedback mechanisms" in which an increase in CO2 leads to an increase in some more significant greenhouse gas (maybe methane, but "most probably" water vapour) and urges world governments (unsurprisingly) to invest heavily in research which will identify these unknown mechanisms.

          If you're a programmer, and you have several hours to spare, you can gain considerable insight into the reliability of Phil Jones' Climate Research Unit data by reading the leaked "Harry Read Me" text file (easy to find).

          Sorry to piss on your parade.

          1. Martin

            If the Guardian has an article by a scientist...

            ...who is actually working on ice cores, and if the article refers to evidence which is (apparently) well researched, then it's not an unreasonable cite.

            I said NOTHING about whether CO2 causes global warming. I specifically said that you could argue all you like about whether the rise has any effect at all. I merely said that it was a fact that CO2 has risen significantly, and it's difficult to see any other explanation which doesn't involve man.

            The article which bill 36 asked me to read, is, however, an article written with an agenda. It reminds me of anti-evolution propoganda - full of quotes with no context, loads of doubtful possibilities thrown out and appeals to authority.

            I do not dispute that people on both sides have an agenda. I do not dispute that this is not an exact science.

            But at the moment, the scientific consensus is clearly that there is a rise in C02 in the atmosphere, and that it's very likely indeed to be a result of the action of man. That's ALL I said. And, speaking purely personally, it's difficult for me to see how anyone could dispute it.

            Finally - nyelvmark - please look up the difference between weather and climate.

            1. Tom 13

              First, you can NEVER cite the Guardian as a reasonable source

              if you always need to check other sources to verify the Guardian.

              Second, your failure of imagination for alternate causes doesn't mean your dogma is true.

      3. Tom 13

        Well, how about an increase

        in volcanic activity?

        The last time I checked all of the combined co2 output over the entire the industrial age comes to less than 1% of a single major volcanic eruption. That means either their data is screwed up because their theory of detection is wrong, or they scrubbed their data the same way the other crew did to remove data that doesn't agree with dogma.

        1. Some Beggar

          @tom 13

          Annual human CO2 emissions are roughly 150 times the annual CO2 emissions from all (roughly 1500) active volcanoes on the planet.

          There isn't a FAIL button big enough to illustrate quite how spectacularly wrong you are.

  9. helst_luzhi

    Why the fixation on CO2

    Just a thought, but has anybody ever considered the fact that perhaps CO2 has little (or nothing) to do with any recorded increase in temperature, and that perhaps it's all the extra HEAT we are releasing into the biosphere?

    The Earth must have a certain capacity for heat dissipation into space, which under pre-industrialisation conditions was ***roughly*** the same as the energy received from the sun (less any stored in peat bogs etc.), hence the alleged stable temperature.

    Energy from the sun ≈ Energy dissipated into space + Energy stored as future fossil fuel

    In our current industrialised world, we are adding more heat energy to the system by burning fossil fuels, which represent a surplus of energy received by the Earth from the sun over millions of years.

    Energy from the sun + Energy from burning fossil fuels > Energy dissipated into space + Energy stored as future fossil fuel (less storage than before)

    And regardless of the efficiency of our fossil fuel power plants, even if they could achieve 100% efficiency, virtually all of that energy will end up as heat in the end, usually through inefficiencies elsewhere, although in some cases (electric heating, vehicle brakes) we intentionally dump it into the environment as heat.

    Although this makes sense to me with fossil fuels, could somebody more knowledgeable confirm what effect the adoption of nuclear (fission or fusion) might have on the energy balance I have suggested?

    1. Goat Jam


      The amount of "heat" generated by human activity does not even constitute a tiny fraction of a percentage point when compared to the amount of "heat" that bombards the planet every day from the single largest source of energy in our solar system, aka "The Sun"

      "The energy released in these explosions is phenomenal; about two billion times the annual world energy consumption in just a fraction of a second.

      David Long, Re: Tsunami's on the Sun

  10. elderlybloke

    Wake me when

    the climate here in NZ starts getting warmer. The weather/climate is cooler now than that of 70 years ago that I remember -Droughts were common and now the bloody lawn only stops growing in the winter.

    I don't go with the masses on the warming thing, because I have been subject to to much bullshit .

    As usual , my apologies to all those who have been upset.

    1. Some Beggar

      Wakey wakey!

      New Zealand (grand as it is) only makes up about .05% of the globe, so, even taking the average across the entire country, it is a very local climate. But it is getting warmer. And parts of it are getting drier and parts of it are getting wetter. And parts of it, no doubt, are getting an increased covering of bullshit. And, perhaps more pertinently, sheep shit.

      1. Goat Jam

        But it is getting warmer

        So? It is warmer this year than the last few years ergo we are experiencing man made climate change.

        Is that it?

        Does that pass for scientific evidence these days?

        You are too young to remember the "Climate Cooling" crisis of the 1970's I'd wager. Here's a choice selection of quotes from "experts" regarding that particular "crisis".

        ”There are ominous signs that the earth's weather patterns have begun to change and cool dramatically and that these changes may portend a drastic decline in food production - with serious political implications for just about every nation on earth. The drop in food production could begin quite soon. The evidence in support of these predictions has now begun to accumulate so massively that meteorologist are hard-pressed to keep up with it.” - Newsweek, April 28, (1975)

        “This cooling has already killed hundreds of thousands of people. If it continues and no strong action is taken, it will cause world famine, world chaos and world war, and this could all come about before the year 2000.” - Lowell Ponte "The Cooling" (1976)

        “The continued rapid cooling of the earth since WWII is in accord with the increase in global air pollution associated with industrialization, mechanization, urbanization and exploding population.” - Reid Bryson, Global Ecology (1971)

        “The battle to feed humanity is over. In the 1970s, the world will undergo famines. Hundreds of millions of people are going to starve to death in spite of any crash programs embarked upon now. Population control is the only answer.” - Prof. Paul Ehrlich - The Population Bomb (1968)

        “In ten years all important animal life in the sea will be extinct. Large areas of coastline will have to be evacuated because of the stench of dead fish.” - Prof. Paul Ehrlich, Earth Day (1970)

        “This cooling trend will reduce agricultural productivity for the rest of the century.” - Peter Gwynne, climatologist, Newsweek (1976)

        “If present trends continue, the world will be about four degrees colder for the global mean temperature in 1990, but eleven degrees colder by the year 2000...This is about twice what it would take to put us in an ice age.” - Kenneth Watt, Earth Day (1970)

        1. Some Beggar

          @Goat Jam

          Oh bravo. You can cut and paste from green-agenda and use condescending ad hominem arguments. [slow hand clap]

          "You are too young to remember the "Climate Cooling" crisis of the 1970's I'd wager."

          "Does that pass for scientific evidence these days?"

          Allow me to save you some typing. Your next response will approximate this: "OMG LOLZORZ USING WIKIPEDIA AS A REFERENCE!!11eleven".

          You're as predictable as Glasgow drizzle.

    2. Muscleguy Silver badge


      You have been asleep recently. Since you have not heard about the El Nino/La Nina climate cycle in the Pacific. Not to mention that

      1. you are relying on personal memory. I can remember cycling down the hill in Dunedin to get to school with my wheels in the gutter and using my feet as brakes in the frost, so my memory trumps yours.

      2. If you are 70+ then you will likely feel the cold more, duh! Never noticed that the elderly tend to wear more clothes in a given temperature than younger people?

      This kiwi (resident in Dundee, try that for cold) is ashamed of you.

  11. Some Beggar

    Still drizzly dull.

    Lewis's job is to scour the internet for publications related to climate change and then select those examples that can be presented in terms that appear to gently undermine the prevailing understanding of the subject while ignoring the overwhelming number of publications which don't fit the editorial stance.

    It's notable that he hasn't covered any other recent publications by CSIRO on the cost-effectiveness of alternative energy solutions, for example, or any of boffinTroccoli's previous work on climate change adaptation and mitigation.

    It is called cherry picking and it is one of the oldest and cheapest tricks in the book. There's nothing particularly admirable about this sort of 'balanced' journalism.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      The CSIRO

      are utterly beholden to the whims of the government, and that current government is 100% behind the entire man made global warming idea because they in turn are utterly beholden to The Greens due to the unfortunate fact that they were unable to obtain a clear majority in the last election and are therefore held hostage to the ideals of the minorities that put them in power.

      The CSIRO know that when they put the begging bowl out it is more likely to get a few extra coins tossed in if they wear a sign around their necks saying "Will do Climate Change research for food"

      It's a sad state of affairs, it really is. The CSIRO were once a great scientific citizen. In many ways they still are, but successive governments have ransacked them with cutback after cutback to the point that they are but a shell of their former selves today.

      1. Some Beggar

        @Anonymous Conspiracy Theorist

        If the CSIRO are part of some gravy train conspiracy then how did they publish the article that this piece refers to? Babbling nonsense.

    2. Goat Jam

      Why all the focus on Earth?

      The entire solar system is suffering a warming crisis FFS!

      ”Global Warming on Pluto Puzzles Scientists: Astronomers today said Pluto is undergoing global warming in its thin atmosphere even as it moves farther from the Sun on its long, odd-shaped orbit.” -

      ”Global Warming on Mars? A study of the ice caps on Mars may show that the red planet is experiencing a warming trend. If both Mars and Earth are experiencing global warming, then perhaps there is a larger phenomenon going on in the Solar System that is causing their global climates to change.” - National Geographic

      “NASA says its Cassini spacecraft has found a hurricane-like storm at Saturn's South Pole, nearly 5,000 miles across - or two-thirds Earth's diameter.” - New Scientist

      "Global Warming Detected on Triton: At least since 1989, Triton has been undergoing a period of global warming," confirms astronomer James Elliot, professor of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences at MIT. "Percentage-wise, it's a very large increase."

      “New Storm on Jupiter Hints at Climate Change: The latest images could provide evidence that Jupiter is in the midst of a global change that can modify temperatures by as much as 10 degrees Fahrenheit on different parts of the globe.” -

      “The Earth is getting hotter because the Sun is burning more brightly than at any time during the past 1,000 years, according to new research published in the prestigious science journal Nature.” - London Telegraph

  12. longbeast

    Deliberately misleading nonsense.

    Reducing the frequency of abnormally high water level events does not say anything about whether the normal-conditions base water level is rising.

    Having fewer storm surges does not help you if the water is flooding you anyway without a storm surge.

    1. Muscleguy Silver badge

      Did you read it?

      Because the article clearly states that the panel assumed the expected sea level rise was true. So at century end, even with the sea level rise, the reduced number of storm surges would reduce flooding events. Also that the current flooding events are largely due to storm surges. Obviously reading comprehension is not your strong suit, or you have the concentration span of a gnat and didn't bother to read beyond the first sentence.

  13. Adze


    All those Veneziana's I ate at Pizza Express... I should sue!

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