Acid Oceans Due to Undersea Volcanoes?

A New Study Refutes Theory Humans Are Responsible for Acidification. A study by Australian geology researcher, Timothy Casey contests the recent claims by environmentalists that man-made emissions of carbon dioxide have been causing ocean acidification. These disturbing claims have been perplexing geologists, among other researchers, who have failed to detect any increase in acidification in the word's rivers, lakes, reservoirs and aquariums.

Now geologists have investigated this question further and come up with new answers. They argue, if there is such a difference between our oceans and our rivers and reservoirs then the source couldn’t be common to both. By finding no increases anywhere in inland water systems this study has inevitably concluded that any human emissions into the atmosphere of carbon dioxide must be excluded as a potential source of oceanic acidification.

Full Story
First Prev
of 16
Next Last
Earthling

Hellín, Spain

#1 Apr 9, 2010
Yet another study that won't go down well with the doom and gloom alarmists who prefer to blame their own species, mankind, for everything that they believe is wrong on planet Earth.
As far as they're concerned, natural forces are no longer involved in controlling climate or the atmosphere, everything but everything is now controlled by human emissions.
LessHypeMoreFact

Etobicoke, Canada

#2 Apr 9, 2010
Frankly it is meaningless as we already have the 'chemistry' down fairly pat as to why oceanic surface chemistry is becoming more acidic.

Volcanoes may contribute to deep ocean PH, but
http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v425/n69...
there is no change in deep oceans pointing to the acidification being related to atmsophere exposure.
Earthling

Hellín, Spain

#3 Apr 9, 2010
That's one thing I like about those who consider themselves scientifically minded, they have it all, "down fairly pat," with little doubt in their little minds regarding everything, including, "atmsophere" exposure.

Since: Apr 08

"the green troll"

#4 Apr 9, 2010
Earthling wrote:
That's one thing I like about those who consider themselves scientifically minded, they have it all, "down fairly pat," with little doubt in their little minds regarding everything, including, "atmsophere" exposure.
That's because they are real sceptics and ask the sceptical questions:

1) Why hasn't all the CO2 that's been observed dissolving in the oceans caused the acidification basic chemistry says it should cause?

2) Where are these undersea volcanoes that suddenly started producing more CO2 just as CO2 levels started rising?

3) Why are acid oceans associated with high CO2 levels in the geological record?

4) Why does this article lie and talk about geologists when really it's just one?

5) Why doesn't the article point out that the geologist concerned is a petroleum geologist and could possibly have an agenda?
Earthling

Hellín, Spain

#5 Apr 9, 2010
Hey there, FuG, why not give me your stock answers to those questions, you're one of those who claims to be scientifically minded and has it all, "down fairly pat?"
Timothy Casey

South Yarra, Australia

#6 Apr 11, 2010
Firstly, the thread is referencing a commentary on the article, not the article itself. If you consult:
http://carbon-budget.geologist-1011.net/
You will be able to read what I actually have to say on the topic instead of second hand hearsay. Hearsay can be rather inaccurate. For example, all of the research was actually done by other scientists, who I cite. That is why I clarify that the article is a "brief literature survey" in my abstract – and dare I say that the confusion observed in the commentary (the one that is the subject of this thread); over geologist vs geologists reflects the quality of that commentary.

Skepticism is about rejecting consensus and qualification in favour of going to the source and preferring facts over "truth".

In response to points raised by "Fair Game":

1) In the vicinity of hydrothermal systems, elevated CO2 levels are recorded. If memory serves, these are also described as quite acidic environments. So, in answer to the point, acidification has been observed in the vicinity of submarine volcanic emissions.

2) Most of the more than 3 million seamounts,(of which approx 139,000 would be active submarine volcanoes) have been there longer than human history. They did not suddenly appear, and volcanism around the world is not a constant but varies.

3) So how do you think the CO2 peaks in the Geological record got there? I'm sure I wasn't driving an SUV way back in the Triassic when atmospheric CO2 rose from 1200ppm to 3100ppm. Incidentally, mean temperatures fell from 21.8 to 18.7 degrees Celsius over the same period undermining the "link" between CO2 and temperature.

4)“Fair Game” will have to take that up with John O'Sullivan, the man he/she/it libeled and who wrote the commentary he/she/it refer to as an "article". For all we know, O'Sullivan misread my literature survey - or maybe he was attempting to write a bit of satire at my expense. Who can tell?

5) I am a petroleum geologist, and whether I have an agenda or not, it would not change the verity of the facts I have presented - something you can check for yourself by following the citations. The ad homenim pseudo argument is patently dishonest because it evades discussing inconvenient facts as if attacking the character of the person presenting those facts somehow changes the facts (by changing the subject no doubt).

It is also a fact that a huge (possibly the largest) share of “green” technology is owned by petroleum interests. British Petroleum owns substantial IP in solar technology. So if anyone wants to engage in silly conspiracy theories, may I suggest investigating how much of the "climatology" & "AGW research" funding is drawn against petroleum industry contributions to scientific research, before making things up out of thin air (or thin CO2 for that matter).

In point of fact, it was I who suggested the possibility ( http://climate.geologist-1011.net/ ) that the petroleum industry could stand to benefit at tax-payer expense from government funded carbon sequestration, because if successful, it would solve the pressure differential problems that plague the vast numbers of tight (low permeability) reservoirs - and that would probably end peak oil for at least another century. It is also a fact of note that I have neither been offered a petroleum industry contract since, nor have I retracted my statement. So I think "Fair Game" can figure out where he/she/it can stick his/her/its hypothetical “agenda”.

Dare I say, Ockham's Razor is the thin red line between reality and delusion.

--
Timothy Casey B.Sc.(hons.)
Consulting Geologist
http://geologist-1011.net

Since: Apr 08

"the green troll"

#7 Apr 11, 2010
A vanity paper published on your web site? Has it been through peer review?

1) You didn't answer my point. CO2 levels have been observed to be increasing in the atmosphere. Some pretty basic chemistry says this should have lead to ocean acidification. To repeat: Why hasn't all the CO2 that's been observed dissolving in the oceans caused the acidification basic chemistry says it should cause?

2) You evaded my point. Where is your evidence of *increased* undersea volcanic activity beginning at the time CO2 levels were observed to increase.

3) By huge volcanic activity. The CO2 emitted into the atmosphere dissolved in the oceans and caused acidification. I doubt any observer around at the time could have missed the volcanic activity going on.

Where is the undersea volcanic activity you claim is outputting all this CO2?

4) Who exactly, apart from yourself, is making this claim that ocean acidification is down to undersea volcanic activity? Have you published in the peer reviewed literature.

5) It's not an ad hominem argument since I *have* addressed your case (see points 1-4), and I can't see any facts that support it.

In a quick scan of your references, I can only see research on volcanic activity and emissions- uncontested facts- nothing to support your case that volcanic activity is responsible for ocean acidification.

Full disclosure requires that articles that mention your paper also point out that you are a petroleum geologist. Yes, there are industry scientists who have done and are doing good work.

Since: Apr 08

"the green troll"

#8 Apr 11, 2010
Good Lord! I tried to read your paper, but you're referencing Plimer as a source on volcanic CO2 output?

Don't you know he totally blew his credibility on that?

Volcanic output above and under the ocean is observed, measured and calculated- and it's not what Plimer says it is.
Jones took up my charge and asked Plimer whether he stood by his claim that volcanoes produce more CO2 than all the world's cars and industries.

Plimer replied "I'm very heartened that a journalist is correcting me on my geology", then launched into a disquisition on how I know nothing about science. Both of us pressed him to answer the question. So Plimer said that neither of us had read his book. We both replied that we had and pressed him again.

Plimer tried to argue that the US Geological Survey only measured emissions from terrestrial volcanoes – not from submarine volcanoes. Jones, who had plainly done his homework, pointed out that a UK journalist (I think he was referring to the Guardian's James Randerson) had gone back to the USGS and asked them whether or not submarine volcanoes were included in its calculations. They were.

Plimer went off at a tangent, starting to list the numbers and kinds of submarine volcanoes. This, I soon found, was a characteristic tactic: when faced with a tricky situation, he starts throwing out random facts. I pointed out that he had been told many times that the USGS figures include submarine volcanoes: he was making a claim on national television that he should know is wrong.
http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/georgem...

Plimer's scientific reputation is toast. Are you really following him down that road?
Gord

Calgary, Canada

#9 Apr 12, 2010
Plimer, Monbiot cross swords in climate debate
http://www.abc.net.au/news/video/2009/12/15/2...

Notice that this interview was done on December 15, 2009?

GEORGE MONBIOT: Yes, they were very straightforward questions. All of them were simply asking for evidence of the claims made in your book, or indeed for references for those claims. You failed repeatedly to answer those questions. However many times I asked, you made up dog-eat-my-homework excuses until eventually the deadline ran out. And it was a quite deliberate ploy not to answer these very simply straightforward questions of scientific fact. And on that question of the temperature record, where you say there's been no
further warming since 1998, the meteorological office responded directly to that claim that you made and said it was complete nonsense, that all the figures show very clearly that this has been the warmest decade of the entire temperature record going back to 1850, and that eight out of the 10 warmest years on record have been since 2001. And what you have done is to cherrypick that 1998 date because it happens to be the record-ever temperature date and to say temperatures have declined since then. But were you to take 1997, or 1999, or any single year in the entirety of the 20th Century except for 1998, you would have found that temperatures have risen. That is an indication of the quality of your argument and
the quality, I'm afraid, of your fabrication.

Etc, Etc....

HAHAHA...what a bunch of BS!

Transcript from the Phil Jones interview with the BBC.(Feb 13, 2010)

"B - Do you agree that from 1995 to the present there has been no statistically-significant global warming

Yes, but only just. I also calculated the trend for the period 1995 to 2009. This trend (0.12C per decade) is positive, but not significant at the 95% significance level. The positive trend is quite close to the significance level. Achieving statistical significance in scientific terms is much more likely for longer periods, and much less likely for shorter periods."

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/8511670.stm

Monibot was COMPLETELY WRONG about the warming and Plimer was absolutely CORRECT!!!

----------
continued...
Gord

Calgary, Canada

#10 Apr 12, 2010
continuation...

On Volcanoes

IAN PLIMER: Well, let me make two points on this. On the chapter called Earth I talk about two volcanoes. One are the terrestrial volcanoes, which is the USGS reports on emissions of carbon dioxide, but more than 85 per cent of the world's volcanoes we do not measure, we do not see, these are submarine volcanoes that release carbon dioxide and we deduce from the chemistry of the rocks how much carbon dioxide is released.

TONY JONES: Can I ask you a question about that, if you don't mind? Because one British journalist whom you quoted those exact figures to went back to the US geological survey after you told him about this 85 per cent figure, and asked he them to confirm their claim that actually 130 times the amount of CO2 is produced by man than volcanoes. The volcanologist Dr Terrance Gerlach confirmed that figure and said furthermore that in their counting they count the undersea volcanoes. So your response to that.

IAN PLIMER: My response is that there are 220,000 undersea volcanoes that we know about. There's 64,000 kilometres of undersea volcanoes which we do ...

GEORGE MONBIOT: Which they have counted.

IAN PLIMER: It is the height of bad manners to interrupt. Please restrain yourself. And we have 64,000 kilometres of volcanoes in submarine environments with massive super volcanoes
there. We do not measure them. And the figures that I have used are deduced from the chemistry of rocks which erupt on the sea floor.

TONY JONES: OK. Now, that's that point dealt with. George Monbiot, a quick response to that and then we'll move on to other questions.

GEORGE MONBIOT: Yeah, sure. I mean, it's, again, straightforward fabrication. Ian produces no new evidence to suggest that the USGS figures are wrong. He keeps citing this statement that they don't include submarine volcanoes. It's been pointed out to him many, many times that the USGS figures do include submarine volcanoes. And actually, it's the height of bad manners Professor Plimer to lie on national television about something that you know to be plain wrong.

---
Volcanic Gases and Their Effects
Comparison of CO2 emissions from volcanoes vs. human activities.

"Scientists have calculated that volcanoes emit between about 130-230 million tonnes (145-255 million tons) of CO2 into the atmosphere every year (Gerlach, 1991). This estimate includes both subaerial and submarine volcanoes, about in equal amounts. Emissions of CO2 by human activities, including fossil fuel burning, cement production, and gas flaring, amount to about 27 billion tonnes per year (30 billion tons)[( Marland, et al., 2006)- The reference gives the amount of released carbon (C), rather than CO2, through 2003.].

Human activities release more than 130 times the amount of CO2 emitted by volcanoes--the equivalent of more than 8,000 additional volcanoes like Kilauea (Kilauea emits about 3.3 million tonnes/year)!(Gerlach et. al., 2002)"

http://volcanoes.usgs.gov/hazards/gas/index.p...

It's OBVIOUS that the USGS DOES NOT MEASURE the CO2 produced by under-sea Volcanoes exactly like Plimer stated "but more than 85 per cent of the world's volcanoes we do not measure"!!!

USGS have CALCULATED an ESTIMATE based on papers!...Like Gerlach, 1991 and 2002, that Tony Jones mentions in his rant.

Please tell me where the USGS, Gerlach or anybody else has MEASURED CO2 from 220,000 undersea volcanoes that we know about.

And Monbiot's rant "Which they have counted" is about as STUPID as it gets!
----------
continued...
Gord

Calgary, Canada

#11 Apr 12, 2010
continuation...

'Lost World' Beneath Caribbean To Be Explored
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/08/...

----------
Exploring undersea volcanoes

"The group discovered that one of the volcanoes, Rumble III, has erupted violently since it was last surveyed in 2007. The summit cone has collapsed, reducing the height of the volcano some 100m and filling the adjacent crater. Images taken by an underwater camera towed by their ship show strewn lava boulders covered by black volcanic ash near the new summit of the volcano.

But Dr de Ronde said that finding evidence of a catastrophic collapse at the summit of Rumble III volcano was an unexpected highlight of the voyage. He said that the eruption is consistent with the fact that a number of the 90 submarine volcanoes along the Kermadec Arc are highly active."
http://www.sciencelearn.org.nz/News-Events/Ne...
----------
Undersea Eruption Now in Stereo
&fe ature=related
----------
Raw Video: Undersea Volcano Erupts
http://www.youtube.com/watch...

I wonder how many Volcanic Eruptions Gerlach "esimated"?

Since: Apr 08

"the green troll"

#13 Apr 12, 2010
Another problem with the paper.

I find the suggestion that atmospheric CO2 measurements are simple the result of contamination from volcanoes insulting to fellow scientists. Do you really believe scientists are incapable of obtaining a sample of clean well-mixed air?

http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/blogs/climat...

Since: Apr 08

"the green troll"

#14 Apr 12, 2010
Next problem.

You claim that the isotopic "fingerprint" of anthropogenic CO2 proves nothing because similar hydrocarbons also contribute to CO2 released by volcanoes.

This ignores the fact that much of the CO2 released by volcanoes comes from carboniferous rock laid. This rock originated as small animal species which do not differentially accumulate CO2 isotopes.

http://www.skepticalscience.com/Human-fingerp...

I'm not a geologist, but even I can see holes in this "paper" big enough to drive a truck through. It wouldn't stand a chance in hell of getting through peer review.

The only reason it's gained any attention is that there are denialist web sites and papers willing to give attention to any pseudo-science attempting to demonstrate that AGW doesn't exists/isn't a problem/is nothing we can do anything about/is too expensive to do anything about.
Earthling

Hellín, Spain

#15 Apr 12, 2010
Ref the 771 gigatonnes of natural CO2 emissions versus the 29 gigatonnes of human CO2 emissions.
Volcanic CO2 emissions are not included in the naturally produced 771 gigatonnes.

What is it that upsets the mythical, "natural balance?"

Oh yes, that's right, I remember now, only human emissions can do that.
>Sarcasm smiley<
LessHypeMoreFact

Etobicoke, Canada

#16 Apr 12, 2010
Timothy Casey wrote:
Skepticism is about rejecting consensus and qualification in favour of going to the source and preferring facts over "truth".
No. Skepticism is finding room for doubt based on actual facts. Not 'cherry picking' and looking only at what you want to believe as here.
Timothy Casey wrote:
1) In the vicinity of hydrothermal systems, elevated CO2 levels are recorded. If memory serves, these are also described as quite acidic environments. So, in answer to the point, acidification has been observed in the vicinity of submarine volcanic emissions.
Quite true, however, you are on the one hand pointing to a VERY small point (hydrothermal vents) and then stating that they are the cause of changes in the LARGE picture. This is total crap.

While hydrothermal vents produce low ph numbers in close proximity, in the total picture they are countered by peridotite exposure which produces a high ph numbers in deep ocean waters. The two neutralise each other in the overall ocean balance.

http://tinyurl.com/y55ywgj
LessHypeMoreFact

Etobicoke, Canada

#18 Apr 12, 2010
Dud Twenties wrote:
good to see you know more than a degree-holding geologist - but then , Gore is only a failed bible-basher anyway, so it puts you in his league.
Hardly. I do not know more. I just happen to know one point and have an honesty about looking at all the facts.

Debate isn't about one person knowing it all and the other being a fool. It is about exchanging view to combine the total facts into a bigger picture than can be done by one person. You should try debating instead of heckling.
Earthling

Hellín, Spain

#19 Apr 12, 2010
LessFact's latest word, from the verb: heckle: heckling.
He's wrong as usual, of course:
Heckle: to harass (a public speaker, performer, etc.) with impertinent questions, gibes, or the like; badger.
Timothy Casey

Australia

#20 Apr 12, 2010
Fair Game wrote:
A vanity paper published on your web site? Has it been through peer review?
[...]
Can you not read? It's a web page with a brief literature survey on it, not a paper – get over it!
1.You fail to address the fact that reservoirs isolated from direct volcanic input are not acidifying, which renders your question irrelevant.
2.No, I ignored your straw man. Where do I actually claim this is happening (as opposed to acknowledging an alternative hypothesis)?
3.That's right, volcanic activity; but unless you can present evidence inferring that all reservoirs isolated from direct volcanic input are acidifying as fast or faster than the oceans, then your atmospheric vector would seem flawed.
4.“Who” is irrelevant. The corruption of science by the question of “who” rather than “what” is what made Eugenics and the consequent Holocaust possible. Dare I say, God herself can't prove your atmospheric vector without explaining why it doesn't affect reservoirs isolated from direct volcanic input.
5.You haven't addressed my case at all, as you can see repeatedly above. Can you not read?
If Satan incarnate appears to you and tells you the theory of gravity, the devil's disrepute will not enable you to fly simply to spite the words of the “unworthy”. Science is about verifiable facts, not people; and provided that you can verify the facts, the reputation of the author is utterly irrelevant and trying to suggest otherwise is brazenly dishonest. In science, full disclosure requires that you present all the facts, especially the ones that don't fit your theory, which is why outliers are amongst the most important elements of statistical description – and the occupation of the people you cite is irrelevant if their facts are verifiable. Whether or not your idea of “full disclosure” is socially accepted, I categorically reject it because it is utterly irrational, as I have demonstrated.
You like to talk about “agendas”?
The presence of an agenda can be confirmed by the deployment of pseudo arguments such as ad homenim, ad baculum, appeal to popularity (consensus), appeal to authority (title/field/qualification), etc., instead of valid arguments. These deceitful debating tactics are typical of pseudosciences such as Eugenics, Lysenkoism, Creationism, perpetual motion machines, alien abductions, and AGW. This is because neglecting or denying certain key facts necessitates a way to change the subject every time an inconvenient fact is raised. In the case of AGW, people are trying to pass off as science, the overly complex conjecture that CO2 is a greenhouse gas, which is actually based on Arrhenius' pretty dismal failure to recognize Tyndall's confusion of absorption and opacity – a monumental blunder in both cases, but certainly not a fact of any scientific merit. Yet this purely conjectural idea of “greenhouse gases” that lacks any quantifiable physical property by which it may be confirmed, is all we have to underpin the idea that global warming is indeed anthropogenic. This violation of both Ockham's Razor and Popper's requirement for falsifiability is a far cry from anything that can honestly be described as science. Understandably, the minute anyone questions the dogma and even when anyone raises facts that don't quite agree with the dogma, the subject is changed from the facts to vilifying the person – and the motive is obvious if you stop and ask why the subject was changed.

Need I say more? Ockham's Razor is the thin red line between reality and delusion.

--
Timothy Casey B.Sc.(hons.)
Consulting Geologist
http://geologist-1011.net
Timothy Casey

Australia

#21 Apr 12, 2010
Fair Game wrote:
Good Lord! I tried to read your paper, but you're referencing Plimer as a source on volcanic CO2 output?
Don't you know he totally blew his credibility on that?
Volcanic output above and under the ocean is observed, measured and calculated- and it's not what Plimer says it is.
<quoted text>
http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/georgem...
Plimer's scientific reputation is toast. Are you really following him down that road?
Reputation is irrelevant to science and is good only for pretenders, charlatans, hucksters, and fraudsters.

Plimer's scientific reputation is irrelevant. Gerlach bases his "estimate" (sheer guesswork) on blind supposition when it comes to subsea volcanic output - as does Kerrick. I think that Plimer deserves a lot of credit for having the courage to stand up and challenge such a widely supported but nevertheless seriously flawed statistical analysis – a challenge I recall he made in his previous book, for which he won the Eureka Science prize. Apparently back then, it wasn't quite so politically incorrect to posit that volcanoes are huge CO2 emitters. Back in those days, critics actually bothered to read the material they reviewed.

Trying to leverage Plimer's reputation is really quite dishonest in my view because in doing so, you completely evade the fact that both Gerlach's (underpinning the USGS statements) and Kerrick's studies were discredited by the study of a single volcano's emissions that, by itself, dwarfed both of their "global" estimates. I challenge you to convince the USGS to tell you which study that was (without consulting my website)– and while you are at it, you might ask them why they continue to ignore the study in question instead of moving forward with the available findings.

Unlike the USGS, I am only one man with no funding, and I don't even need a reputation to find out that Kerrick's and Gerlach's guesses are hopelessly underestimated.

May I suggest that Ockham's Razor is the thin red line between reality and delusion.

--
Timothy Casey B.Sc.(hons.)
Consulting Geologist
http://geologist-1011.net
Timothy Casey

Australia

#22 Apr 12, 2010
Gord wrote:
continuation...
[...]
Please tell me where the USGS, Gerlach or anybody else has MEASURED CO2 from 220,000 undersea volcanoes that we know about.
And Monbiot's rant "Which they have counted" is about as STUPID as it gets!
----------
continued...
They didn't measure anything – nor did they cite measurements for any submarine volcanoes, as far as I could tell. Kerrick, claiming to have used Gerlach's method totally ignores mid oceanic ridge volcanism and goes on to guess that subsea volcanic output is equal to subaerial volcanic output – without any factual substantiation to speak of.

Ockham's Razor is the thin red line between reality and delusion.

--
Timothy Casey B.Sc.(hons.)
Consulting Geologist
http://geologist-1011.net

Tell me when this thread is updated:

Subscribe Now Add to my Tracker
First Prev
of 16
Next Last

Add your comments below

Characters left: 4000

Please note by submitting this form you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Service and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator. Send us your feedback.

Oceanography Discussions

Title Updated Last By Comments
Pakistan earthquake island belching poisonous gas (Sep '13) Sep 4 Snark Snark 13
Swinging CO2 Levels Show The Earth Is 'Breathin... (Aug '13) Sep 4 Earthling-1 80
Does Antarctic sea ice growth negate climate ch... Aug 31 Jim the Hoax Denier 3
Severe drought is causing the western US to ris... Aug 30 SpaceBlues 2
Bad news for sea-level rises as quickening Anta... Aug '14 SpaceBlues 5
How much methane came out of that hole in Siberia? Aug '14 SpaceBlues 1
Study Finds Giant 'Superplume' Slowly Splitting... Aug '14 Adrian Godsafe MSc 1
•••

Oceanography People Search

Addresses and phone numbers for FREE

•••