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05-31-08, 11:15 AM
<b>movielib</b> et al, please continue.

05-31-08, 12:39 PM
Let me just start by saying I check these threads when there's updates and love the information. However, there's just so much information and I really don't have a base of understanding about it yet.

Could someone recommend a "Global Warming Skepticism for Dummies" type of book that could give me that base? Or at least a beginner set of articles to read.

05-31-08, 01:49 PM

05-31-08, 02:46 PM
Let me just start by saying I check these threads when there's updates and love the information. However, there's just so much information and I really don't have a base of understanding about it yet.

Could someone recommend a "Global Warming Skepticism for Dummies" type of book that could give me that base? Or at least a beginner set of articles to read.
I wholeheartedly recommend as one of the most current and the best one out there right now:



05-31-08, 05:46 PM
Following up on Post #787 from the last thread about the Australian website which tells people (it's geared toward kids) how much horrible "global warming pollution" they are causing and thus at what age they should (or should have) die(d). I should have died at age 4.5 (I think I was given extra time because I haven't flown in a long time). But I still got 50% more time than Mr. Piggy himself, the guy with the huge carbon footprint, Al Gore.

Lubos Motl has blogged:


Saturday, May 31, 2008 ...
Australian ABC: Al Gore should die at age 3

Planet Slayer (http://www.abc.net.au/science/planetslayer/greenhouse_calc.htm)

is a new website designed by the Australian ABC television station for children that calculates when a kid or another person should die (a newspaper report). A Mr Schpinkee who is clearly a complete imbecile who looks like a rabbit but who has nevertheless been hired as a professor ;-) asks you about the person's meat and gasoline consumption, his income, and flying habits, among similar quantities.

A capitalist imperialist pig on the picture is growing according to the person's "carbon footprint". At the end, it tells you when the person should die.

I've checked Al Gore and he should die at age 3 or so (even though the correct inverse proportionality law would probably lead to the result of a few weeks). While I tend to qualitatively agree with this particular conclusion (yes, it seems that it's already too late), I don't think it is ethical to feed Australian children with this disgusting garbage. The best thing I can advise the creators of the website is to follow their own recommendation when they should die. Thank you very much: the average Aussie is told to die at age 9.3 years and the website is dedicated to 9-year old kids, giving the lucky average ones 4 more months to live. Incidentally, your humble correspondent would probably have some additional years to live. ;-)

Is this exercise really expected from 9-year-old kids? At that age, I cared about differential equations and the exponentials of complex numbers.
I recommend that you all take the quiz and see when you should die (or more likely, should have died). It's cool, it's fun and it's the "green" thing to do.

05-31-08, 10:47 PM
I think it is really mean that you don't allow movielib to start these threads.
He has started a couple I think. I think the title is a bit off. It should probably be "The One and Only Anti-Global Warming Thread", but since we have a tradition going...I'm all for tradition. ;)

06-01-08, 09:59 AM
He has started a couple I think.
I was getting ready to start the new one. I was waiting for Post #800. Missed it by that much. :)

I think the title is a bit off. It should probably be "The One and Only Anti-Global Warming Thread", but since we have a tradition going...I'm all for tradition. ;)
Isn't it the alarmists who are "anti" global warming and think we have to "fight" it? While the vast majority of posts are skeptical there's nothing that says they have to be. I think the thread is about global warming and the title merely reflects that.

06-01-08, 10:10 AM
Can't wait for the road show.


Al Gore Goes Opera
Written by: Frida Hognabba

Gore’s “An Inconvenient Truth” is to be staged by an Italian Opera House.

Al Gore’s fame and success just keeps on growing, Guardian.co.uk reports.

The latest development regarding Gore’s hugely successful natural disaster production, “An Inconvenient Truth,” stuns all as La Scala opera house in Milan, Italy, wants to turn the film into an opera.

Gore won a Nobel Prize, an Emmy, and an Oscar, as well as numerous honorary doctorates, thanks to his production on global warming, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Artistic director of La Scala, Spephane Lissner, revealed in a press conference on Thursday that the opera would be brought to the stage in 2011, as confirmed by Italian composer Giorgio Battistelli who commissioned the opera.

According to Mr. Lissner, 53-year-old Battistelli is no stranger to making use of modern themes including environmental aspects.

Lissner could not outline any concrete specifics regarding how the production would be staged.
I can just see the singing CO2/temperature graph covering up the fact that the rises in CO2 lagged behind the rises in temperature by 800 years. In Italian.

Tuan Jim
06-01-08, 01:41 PM
Quick response to your post of the 4th report from Copenhagen.

As much as I hate seeing all the billions of pork in the Farm bill, stuff like that doesn't happen in a vacuum - look at the EU and their continuing protection of farmers (and similarly in Japan) - or the BS in Korea over "tainted beef". Food prices would drop immensely around the world if we could just get rid of this endless protectionism. I don't mind building stockpiles of food in the US, just the same as I believe it's a good idea to keep the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, but paying folks not to grow anything or guaranteeing domestic farmers the right to keep growing stuff like sugar at prices well above the market - which we can get infinitely cheaper overseas (while benefitting those countries greatly) is really, really stupid.

06-01-08, 01:46 PM
Quick response to your post of the 4th report from Copenhagen.

As much as I hate seeing all the billions of pork in the Farm bill, stuff like that doesn't happen in a vacuum - look at the EU and their continuing protection of farmers (and similarly in Japan) - or the BS in Korea over "tainted beef". Food prices would drop immensely around the world if we could just get rid of this endless protectionism. I don't mind building stockpiles of food in the US, just the same as I believe it's a good idea to keep the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, but paying folks not to grow anything or guaranteeing domestic farmers the right to keep growing stuff like sugar at prices well above the market - which we can get infinitely cheaper overseas (while benefitting those countries greatly) is really, really stupid.
I agree with you 100%.

06-01-08, 04:32 PM
May - another cold month.


Sunday, June 01, 2008
May 2008 Was Another Cold Month
By Joseph D’Aleo, CCM

For more than 75% of the nation, May was cooler than normal, as much as 6F below in the far North Central.


This is in sharp contrast to May 2007 which was warm in the same areas it was cold this year. May 2007 was the 11th warmest May for the US.

[Note by movielib: Link to larger image didn't work]

We will see in a few days where this May ranks. Clearly it will be colder than normal. UAH MSU daily data suggests the global average will be well below last year as well. Stay tuned for official updates.

That should continue the downslide we have seen starting in 2002 which accelerated the last year with the Pacific cooling and La Nina. Meanwhile Antarctic ice remains at 1 million square kilometers ahead of last year at this time and ahead of the average since 1979. If it stays at this anomaly, we will surpass the record set late last winter there. The arctic ice is similar to late May at this time after recovering nicely this past winter from record low levels in September and October. Only time will tell whether the same flow patterns will develop in June that developed last year to rapidly diminish the ice. See more here.
(Note that the first graph is in Celsius and the second one in Fahrenheit. The colors and scale though are essentially the same.)

The alarmists can keep on blaming it on the La Nina but what they don't tell you is that when the ocean oscillations are in a warm phase the El Ninos are more frequent, longer and stronger than the La Ninas and that when the ocean oscillations are in a cool phase the La Ninas are more frequent, longer and stronger than the El Ninos. In the last quarter of the twentieth century, the former situation was going on and in the twenty-first century the latter situation has been taking over. It's not the CO2 that rules.

06-02-08, 06:50 PM

NASA misled on global warming studies

WASHINGTON (AP) -- NASA's press office "marginalized or mischaracterized" studies on global warming between 2004 and 2006, the agency's own internal watchdog concluded.

In a report released Monday, NASA's inspector general office called it "inappropriate political interference" by political appointees in the press office. It said the agency's top management wasn't part of the censorship, nor were career officials.

NASA downplayed the report as old news on a problem that has since been fixed. NASA spokesman Michael Cabbage said the space agency's new policies have been hailed for openness by the U.S. Government Accountability Office.

The report found credence in allegations that National Public Radio was denied access to top global warming scientist James Hansen. It also found evidence that NASA headquarters press officials canceled a press conference on a mission monitoring ozone pollution and global warming because it was too close to the 2004 presidential election.

In addition, the report detailed more than a dozen other actions in which it said the NASA public affairs office unilaterally edited or downgraded press releases having to do with global warming or denied access to scientists.

There's more...

06-02-08, 07:13 PM
I'm certainly not going to defend the Bush administration. They did some stupid pointless things when the science was mostly on their side.

As for Hansen, was NPR denied access before, during or after the Alarmist-in-Chief was giving 1400 interviews? No other scientist involved in climate has gotten anywhere near the coverage of Hansen.

Much ado about very little.

The Bus
06-03-08, 08:00 AM
So let me ask this to movielib and others: regardless of what it does to the planet's climate (if anything), what is your view on pollution and emissions? Are they at OK levels everywhere in the world? If they are, what makes you say this? If they're not, how do you propose curbing them?

06-03-08, 08:37 AM
So let me ask this to movielib and others: regardless of what it does to the planet's climate (if anything), what is your view on pollution and emissions? Are they at OK levels everywhere in the world? If they are, what makes you say this? If they're not, how do you propose curbing them?
In a nutshell:

Pollution: If we're talking about real pollution, of course that's not OK. I'd rather it be handled by the free market and courts (if someone is polluting others' property) but I can understand that is probably not going to happen on a large scale so reasonable regulations are going to be the way. Cost-benefit analysis should be used so that we don't keep spending more and more for less and less once safe levels are reached. It should be recognized that third world companies are going to have to get dirtier before they get wealthy enough to get cleaner. Their big advantage over what the wealthier countries had to go through is that they don't have to reinvent the technology that now exists.

As for CO2 emissions, that is not pollution. It has a tiny warming effect that is basically lost among the natural warming and cooling. It's not important but there is nothing wrong with developing alternatives to carbon-based technology, particularly the one effective technology we already have, nuclear. All this should be market driven and not subsidized by governments.

06-03-08, 08:52 AM
So let me ask this to movielib and others: regardless of what it does to the planet's climate (if anything), what is your view on pollution and emissions? Are they at OK levels everywhere in the world? If they are, what makes you say this? If they're not, how do you propose curbing them?

I don't believe anyone is saying that. But lets draw a CLEAR distinction between greenhouse gases (only effect is perhaps warming the earth due to absorbtion of light and infrared) and pollution, emissions of chemicals that are a direct danger to life, human, animal, and plant. (And keep in mind that CO2 is as necessary to plants as oxygen is to animals)

Air pollution is mostly a local or regional issue as it only reaches dangerous concentrations in some areas. When "well mixed" it is not at dangerous levels on a world-wide basis (unlike what CAGW would say about CO2). So I can't speak for the whole world, although evidence would clearly say that China has a terrible problem. I believe a number of other coutries do too. They need to focus on regulatory guidelines for their problem pollutants and get off the CO2/global warming bandwagon.

The US has some moderate attainment issues with ozone and particulate matter. Carbon monoxide, lead, volatile hydrocarbons, nitrogen oxides, sulfur oxides appear to meet regulatory limits. (Note: HC and NOx react in sunlight to form ground level ozone, which is a problem, so those limits may need looking at.)

The over-emphasis of CO2 emissions and lack of focus on directly harmful pollution is a problem in my opinion. For example, the swing to diesel engines in Europe is going to make it much harder to control particulate matter, PM2.5, which causes cancer, in a relatively unnecessary effort to control CO2. It will be claimed (and correctly) that diesel engines have to meet the "same standards" but the PM standards were written for diesel, gasoline engines beat the standard by a HUGE margin, and the standard could be lowered 10X if it weren't for diesel.

Since we don't have unlimited dollars to spend on pollution control, spending it on controlling CO2, which doesn't need to be controlled, causes it to NOT be spent on things that should be controlled, NOx, mercury, sulfur, etc.

In areas where the US has attainment issues, further regulation of new cars won't help much as they are already tightly regulated. Those cities need to focus on:
*other emitters of the problem pollutants
*older cars which meet older and higher emission standards, or no standards at all.

06-03-08, 09:28 AM

06-03-08, 11:25 AM
Sen Inhofe's editorial in the WSJ about the climate bill being debated this week:


We Don't Need a Climate Tax on the Poor
June 3, 2008; Page A21

With average gas prices across the country approaching $4 a gallon, it may be hard to believe, but the U.S. Senate is considering legislation this week that will further drive up the cost at the pump.

The Senate is debating a global warming bill that will create the largest expansion of the federal government since FDR's New Deal, complete with a brand new, unelected bureaucracy. The Lieberman-Warner bill (America's Climate Security Act) represents the largest tax increase in U.S. history and the biggest pork bill ever contemplated with trillions of dollars in giveaways. Well-heeled lobbyists are already plotting how to divide up the federal largesse. The handouts offered by the sponsors of this bill come straight from the pockets of families and workers in the form of lost jobs, higher gas, power and heating bills, and more expensive consumer goods.

Various analyses show that Lieberman-Warner would result in higher prices at the gas pump, between 41 cents and $1 per gallon by 2030. The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) says Lieberman-Warner would effectively raise taxes on Americans by more than $1 trillion over the next 10 years. The federal Energy Information Administration says the bill would result in a 9.5% drop in manufacturing output and higher energy costs.

Carbon caps will have an especially harmful impact on low-income Americans and those with fixed incomes. A recent CBO report found: "Most of the cost of meeting a cap on CO2 emissions would be borne by consumers, who would face persistently higher prices for products such as electricity and gasoline. Those price increases would be regressive in that poorer households would bear a larger burden relative to their income than wealthier households."

The poor already face energy costs as a much higher percentage of their income than wealthier Americans. While most Americans spend about 4% of their monthly budget on heating their homes or other energy needs, the poorest fifth of Americans spend 19%. A 2006 survey of Colorado homeless families with children found that high energy bills were cited as one of the two main reasons they became homeless.

Lieberman-Warner will also hinder U.S. competitiveness, transferring American jobs overseas to places where environmental regulations are much more lenient. Instead of working to eliminate trade barriers on clean energy and lower emitting technologies, the bill imposes a "green," tariff-style tax on imported goods. This could provoke international retaliatory actions by our trade partners, threatening our own export markets and further driving up the costs of consumer goods.

My colleague, Sen. George Voinovich (R., Ohio), warned last week that Lieberman-Warner "could result in the most massive bureaucratic intrusion into the lives of Americans since the creation of the Internal Revenue Service." Mandating burdensome new layers of federal bureaucracy is not the solution to America's energy challenges.

This bill is ultimately about certainty. We are certain of the huge negative impact on the economy as detailed by numerous government and private analyses. We are certain of the massive expansion of the federal bureaucracy.

And we are certain the bill will not have a detectable impact on the climate. According to the Environmental Protection Agency's own analysis, by 2050 Lieberman-Warner would only lower global CO2 concentrations by less than 1.4% without additional international action. In fact, this bill, often touted as an "insurance policy" against global warming, is instead all economic pain for no climate gain.

Why are many in Washington proposing a bill that will do so much economic harm? The answer is simple. The American people are being asked to pay significantly more for energy merely so some lawmakers in Washington can say they did something about global warming.

I have been battling global warming alarmism since 2003, when I became chairman of the Environment and Public Works Committee. It has been a lonely battle at times, but it now appears that many of my colleagues are waking up to the reality of cap-and-trade legislation.

The better way forward is an energy policy that emphasizes technology and includes developing nations such as China and India. Tomorrow's energy mix must include more natural gas, wind and geothermal, but it must also include oil, coal and nuclear power, which is the world's largest source of emission-free energy. Developing and expanding domestic energy sources will translate into energy security and ensure stable supplies and well-paying jobs for Americans.

Let me end with a challenge to my colleagues. Will you dare stand on the Senate floor in these uncertain economic times and vote in favor of significantly increasing the price of gas at the pump, losing millions of American jobs, creating a huge new bureaucracy and raising taxes by record amounts? The American people deserve and expect a full debate on this legislation.

Mr. Inhofe, a Republican senator from Oklahoma, is ranking member of the Environment and Public Works Committee.
Even if economic times were great this bill is insane. And even its supporters acknowledge it has little chance of passing and would be vetoed if it did. But surely we're being softened up for a more Democratic Congress and an alarmist president next year.

06-03-08, 06:58 PM
"Muzzling" is different for skeptics than for alarmists.



I see that we are once again having to hear how NASA's James Hansen was dissuaded from talking to the press on a few of the 1,400 media interviews he was involved in over the years.

Well, I had the same pressure as a NASA employee during the Clinton-Gore years, because NASA management and the Clinton/Gore administration knew that I was skeptical that mankind's CO2 emissions were the main cause of global warming. I was even told not to give my views during congressional testimony, and so I purposely dodged a question, under oath, when it arose.

But I didn't complain about it like Hansen has. NASA is an executive branch agency and the President was, ultimately, my boss (and is, ultimately, Hansen's boss). So, because of the restrictions on what I could and couldn't do or say, I finally just resigned from NASA and went to work for the university here in Huntsville. There were no hard feelings, and I'm still active in a NASA satellite mission and fully supportive of its Earth observation programs.

In stark contrast, Jim Hansen said whatever he wanted, whenever he wanted to the press and congress during that time. He even campaigned for John Kerry, and received a $250,000 award from Theresa Heinz-Kerry's charitable foundation -- two events he maintains are unrelated. If I had done anything like this when I worked at NASA, I would have been crucified under the Hatch Act.

Does anyone besides me see a double standard here?

-Roy W. Spencer
The University of Alabama in Huntsville

06-03-08, 07:05 PM
Let me just start by saying I check these threads when there's updates and love the information. However, there's just so much information and I really don't have a base of understanding about it yet.

Could someone recommend a "Global Warming Skepticism for Dummies" type of book that could give me that base? Or at least a beginner set of articles to read.
In addition to Roy Spencer's book which I recommended in Post #5, I found this web page of his on "Global warming 101" (Go down the page a little for the start):


06-03-08, 07:41 PM
In addition to Roy Spencer's book which I recommended in Post #5, I found this web page of his on "Global warming 101" (Go down the page a little for the start):


Cool, thanks. Looks like a good place to start.

I plan on getting the book when I have the chance.

06-04-08, 11:50 PM
Brrrr, May was cold.


Wednesday, June 04, 2008
May Global 4th Coldest in UAH MSU Satellite Record
By Joseph D’Aleo

The University of Alabama MSU lower tropospheric data just released showed this May was the 4th coldest May for the globe since that record began in 1979. It was also below the average for both hemispheres. It trailed only 1985, a weak El Nino at the tail end of the El Chichon cold period, 1989, a summer following a strong La Nina, and 1992, the year after Pinatubo. It was just 0.003 colder than 1993, another Pinatubo affected year that ranked 5th.

This year is coming off a strong La Nina and a cold Pacific (negative PDO). Satellite monitoring began in 1979. Had it been available before the Great Pacific Climate Shift, you would find more such cold May years.


That continues the downslide we have seen starting in 2002 which accelerated the last year with the Pacific cooling and La Nina.


The next week to 10 days will see more warmth in the east and central United States as the Madden Julian Oscillation (MJO) is in a location that favors a western North American trough and the building of a southeast and south central ridge. After mid-month, the MJO should advance to a spot favoring the trough coming east and the ridge backing up to the south central and Rockies/Intermountain.

06-05-08, 05:49 PM
Brrrr, May was cold.


Yep. Here's more info:


UAH: Global Temperature Dives in May
3 06 2008

Confirming what many of us have already noted from the anecdotal evidence coming in of a much cooler than normal May, such as late spring snows as far south as Arizona, extended skiing in Colorado, and delays in snow cover melting, (here and here), the University of Alabama, Huntsville (UAH) published their satellite derived Advanced Microwave Sounder Unit data set of the Lower Troposphere for May 2008.

It is significantly colder globally, colder even than the significant drop to -0.046°C seen in January 2008.

The global ∆T from April to May 2008 was -.195°C

2008 1 -0.046
2008 2 0.020
2008 3 0.094
2008 4 0.015
2008 5 -0.180

Compared to the May 2007 value of 0.199°C we find a 12 month ∆T is -.379°C.

But even more impressive is the change since the last big peak in global temperature in January 2007 at 0.594°C, giving a 16 month ∆T of -0.774°C which is equal in magnitude to the generally agreed upon “global warming signal” of the last 100 years.


Click for a larger image
Reference: UAH lower troposphere data

I’m betting that RSS (expected soon) will also be below the zero anomaly line, since it tends to agree well with UAH. HadCRUT will likely show a significant drop, I’m going to make a SWAG and say it will end up around 0.05 to -0.15°C. GISS; I’m not going to try a SWAG, as it could be anything. Of course anomalies can change to positive on the next El Nino, but this one seems to be deepening.

Update 06/05/08: Per MattN’s suggestion, changed link above for snow melt to news stories from previous link to National Snow and Ice Center

06-06-08, 06:58 AM
One presidential candidate isn't on the CAGW bandwagon.


Press Releases › Don’t Wreck the Economy in the Name of the Environment, Says Bob Barr

June 5, 2008 2:37 pm EST

Atlanta, GA -- The Senate is now debating the Lieberman-Warner bill to restrict energy use. "This legislation would sacrifice our economic future, and particularly that of poorer Americans, for virtually no environmental gain," warns Bob Barr, the Libertarian Party candidate for president.

Despite the many predictions of doom, "the science of climate change remains highly complex," he says. There has been no warming over the last decade and scientists disagree over how much warming is likely in the future.

To respond to purely speculative problems, Lieberman-Warner would mandate an emission cut of 70 percent by 2050, a virtual impossibility. "It would be hard enough to hold energy use constant with a growing population," he notes. "every additional person needs food, transportation, and housing."

Energy prices would soar. Hundreds of thousands or millions of jobs would be lost. Barr points to a study by the Congressional Budget Office which warns that the Senate bill would hike energy costs $1300 per household, effectively a $1 trillion tax hike over the next decade. "Estimates of the potential GDP loss run into the trillions of dollars," he explains.

The legislation also "would create a monster bureaucracy to run the system," warns Barr. Sen. Lieberman estimates that the new Climate Change Credit Corporation would have as much as $7 trillion in grants to give away, which, says Barr, would set up "an unprecedented special interest gold rush."

Yet climatologists like Dr. Patrick Michaels figure that Lieberman-Warner would cut potential future warming by only .013 degrees (Celsius), "an amount hard to even measure," says Barr. It makes far more sense "to adapt to challenges as they develop than to commit economic suicide to prevent problems that are unlikely to occur."

Barr represented the 7th District of Georgia in the U. S. House of Representatives from 1995 to 2003, where he served as a senior member of the Judiciary Committee, as Vice-Chairman of the Government Reform Committee, and as a member of the Committee on Financial Services. Prior to his congressional career, Barr was appointed by President Reagan to serve as the United States Attorney for the Northern District of Georgia, and also served as an official with the CIA.

Since leaving Congress, Barr has been practicing law and has teamed up with groups ranging from the American Civil Liberties Union to the American Conservative Union to actively advocate every American citizens' right to privacy and other civil liberties guaranteed in the Bill of Rights. Along with this, Bob is committed to helping elect leaders who will strive for smaller government, lower taxes and abundant individual freedom.

06-06-08, 08:36 AM
Here's a great column.

If the doomsayers' real goal was to reduce carbon dioxide emissions, they would solve that problem by taxing the carbon dioxide emissions, and using that money to lower the payroll tax.

But reducing carbon dioxide emissions is not their real goal. Their real goal is to create excessive amounts of government red tape and bureaucracy, which is why they favor policies that don't significantly reduce carbon dioxide emissions, such as ethanol, CAFE, cap and trade cronyism with free giveaways of pollution permits to special interests, the Kyoto Treaty, etc.


June 6, 2008

At $4, Everybody Gets Rational

By Charles Krauthammer

So now we know: The price point is $4.

At $3 a gallon, Americans just grin and bear it, suck it up and, while complaining profusely, keep driving like crazy. At $4, it is a world transformed. Americans become rational creatures. Mass transit ridership is at a 50-year high. Driving is down 4 percent. (Any U.S. decline is something close to a miracle.) Hybrids and compacts are flying off the lots. SUV sales are in free fall.

The wholesale flight from gas guzzlers is stunning in its swiftness, but utterly predictable. Everything has a price point. Remember that "love affair" with SUVs? Love, it seems, has its price too.

America's sudden change in car-buying habits makes suitable mockery of that absurd debate Congress put on last December on fuel efficiency standards. At stake was precisely what miles-per-gallon average would every car company's fleet have to meet by precisely what date.

It was one out-of-a-hat number (35 mpg) compounded by another (by 2020). It involved, as always, dozens of regulations, loopholes and throws at a dartboard. And we already knew from past history what the fleet average number does. When oil is cheap and everybody wants a gas guzzler, fuel efficiency standards force manufacturers to make cars that nobody wants to buy. When gas prices go through the roof, this agent of inefficiency becomes an utter redundancy.

At $4 a gallon, the fleet composition is changing spontaneously and overnight, not over the 13 years mandated by Congress. (Even Stalin had the modesty to restrict himself to five-year plans.) Just Tuesday, GM announced that it would shutter four SUV and truck plants, add a third shift to its compact and midsize sedan plants in Ohio and Michigan, and green-light for 2010 the Chevy Volt, an electric hybrid.

Some things, like renal physiology, are difficult. Some things, like Arab-Israeli peace, are impossible. And some things are preternaturally simple. You want more fuel-efficient cars? Don't regulate. Don't mandate. Don't scold. Don't appeal to the better angels of our nature. Do one thing: Hike the cost of gas until you find the price point.

Unfortunately, instead of hiking the price ourselves by means of a gasoline tax that could be instantly refunded to the American people in the form of lower payroll taxes, we let the Saudis, Venezuelans, Russians and Iranians do the taxing for us — and pocket the money that the tax would have recycled back to the American worker.

This is insanity. For 25 years and with utter futility (starting with "The Oil-Bust Panic," the New Republic, February 1983), I have been advocating the cure: a U.S. energy tax as a way to curtail consumption and keep the money at home. On this page in May 2004 (and again in November 2005), I called for "the government — through a tax — to establish a new floor for gasoline," by fully taxing any drop in price below a certain benchmark. The point was to suppress demand and to keep the savings (from any subsequent world price drop) at home in the U.S. Treasury rather than going abroad. At the time, oil was $41 a barrel. It is now $123.

But instead of doing the obvious — tax the damn thing — we go through spasms of destructive alternatives, such as efficiency standards, ethanol mandates and now a crazy carbon cap-and-trade system the Senate is debating this week. These are infinitely complex mandates for inefficiency and invitations to corruption. But they have a singular virtue: They hide the cost to the American consumer.

Want to wean us off oil? Be open and honest. The British are paying $8 a gallon for petrol. Goldman Sachs is predicting we will be paying $6 by next year. Why have the extra $2 (above the current $4) go abroad? Have it go to the U.S. Treasury as a gasoline tax and be recycled back into lower payroll taxes.

Announce a schedule of gas tax hikes of 50 cents every six months for the next two years. And put a tax floor under $4 gasoline, so that as high gas prices transform the U.S. auto fleet, change driving habits and thus hugely reduce U.S. demand — and bring down world crude oil prices — the American consumer and the American economy reap all of the benefit.

Herewith concludes my annual exercise in futility. By the time I write next year's edition, you'll be paying for gas in bullion.

06-06-08, 09:24 AM
We are safe for the moment.


Senate climate bill blocked

By H. JOSEF HEBERT – 30 minutes ago

WASHINGTON (AP) — Senate Republicans on Friday blocked a global warming bill that would have required major reductions in greenhouse gases, after a bitter debate over its economic costs and whether it would substantially raise gasoline and other energy prices.

Democratic leaders fell a dozen votes short of getting the 60 needed to end a Republican filibuster on the measure and bring the bill up for a vote. The 48-36 vote failed to reach even a majority, a disappointment to the bill's supporters.

Majority Leader Harry Reid was expected to pull the legislation, in all likelihood pushing the congressional debate over climate change to next year with a new Congress and a new president.

The bill would have capped carbon dioxide coming from power plants, refineries and factories, with a target of cutting greenhouse gas emissions by 71 percent by mid-century.

"It's a huge tax increase," argued Republican Senate leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, a prominent coal-producing state. He maintained that the proposed system of allowing widespread trading of carbon emissions allowances would produce "the largest restructuring of the American economy since the New Deal."

Supporters of the bill accused Republicans of muddying the water with misinformation.

"There is no tax increase," Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., one of the bill's chief sponsors said. She said the emissions trading system would provide tax relief to help people pay energy prices. And supporters disputed that it would substantially increase gasoline prices.

Four Democrats joined most Republicans in essentially killing the bill.

Both presidential candidates, Democrat Barack Obama and Republican John McCain, were absent, although supporters of the bill said they had sent letters advising they would have voted for the bill.

06-06-08, 10:26 AM
And look who says they would've voted for it...

Both presidential candidates, Democrat Barack Obama and Republican John McCain, were absent, although supporters of the bill said they had sent letters advising they would have voted for the bill.


06-06-08, 11:10 AM
And look who says they would've voted for it...
Both presidential candidates, Democrat Barack Obama and Republican John McCain, were absent, although supporters of the bill said they had sent letters advising they would have voted for the bill.

That doesn't surprise you, does it?

06-06-08, 03:50 PM
That doesn't surprise you, does it?
Not at all, just disappointing that there's no electable choice who isn't drinking the kool-aid.

06-06-08, 04:50 PM
Not at all, just disappointing that there's no electable choice who isn't drinking the kool-aid.
See Post #25.

Oh wait, you said electable. <img src="http://www.extremefunnypictures.com/comment/sad_smile.gif" alt="Sad 5" />

06-06-08, 05:27 PM
Is there hope that even with an alarmist in the White House, the CAGW crowd will not get its way?


Political Diary
June 6, 2008
Climate-Change Collapse

Environmentalists are stunned that their global warming agenda is in collapse. Senator Harry Reid has all but conceded he lacks the vote for passage in the Senate and that it's time to move on. Backers of the Warner-Lieberman cap-and-trade bill always knew they would face a veto from President Bush, but they wanted to flex their political muscle and build momentum for 2009. That strategy backfired. The green groups now look as politically intimidating as the skinny kid on the beach who gets sand kicked in his face.

Those groups spent millions advertising and lobbying to push the cap-and-trade bill through the Senate. But it would appear the political consensus on global warming was as exaggerated as the alleged scientific consensus. "With gasoline selling at $4 a gallon, the Democrats picked the worst possible time to bring up cap and trade," says Dan Clifton, a political analyst for Strategas Research Partners. "This issue is starting to feel like the Hillary health care plan."

It's a good analogy. Originally, Hillary health care had towering levels of support, but once people looked at the cost and complexity they cringed. Jobs were on the mind yesterday of Senator Arlen Specter, who has endorsed a tamer version of cap-and-trade. "Workers in Pennsylvania worry that this will send jobs to China," he tells me. They're smart to worry. Look no further than the failure of the Kyoto countries to live up to their promised emissions cuts. Bjorn Lomborg, the author of The Skeptical Environmentalist, tells me: "The Europeans are so far behind schedule, it is almost inconceivable that they will meet their targets."

Even John McCain, a cap-and-trade original co-sponsor, now says that this scheme won't fly until China and India sign on – which could be never.

Senators also criticized Warner-Lieberman's failure to clearly specify what would happen with the vast revenues the climate bill would generate – some $1 trillion over the first decade, which environmental groups wanted as a slush fund to finance "green technologies." Senator Judd Gregg of New Hampshire insisted the proceeds be used for other tax cuts, like the elimination of the corporate income tax. The Natural Resources Defense Council desperately tried to persuade Congress in the 11th hour that the expensive price tag is a bargain because "the cost of inaction" would reach $1.8 trillion by 2100 due to increased hurricanes and rising oceans – an argument without a shred of scientific or fiscal credibility.

Republicans in the Senate this week did such a masterful job of picking the cap-and-trade bill apart with objections, yesterday Barbara Boxer of California was "pulling her hair out with frustration, " as one Republican leadership staffer put it.

Environmentalists have always eyed 2009 as the real target year for enactment. But there was no show of strength this week and cap-and-trade may have reached its political high water mark. Conservatives at least are in a far stronger position now to demand major pro-growth tax cuts in exchange for new global warming taxes.
I'm not so sure if I'm so optimistic. The cloture vote failed but got 48 votes vs. 36. Fully 16 senators did not vote. Seven Republicans voted for cloture. At least two more, McCain and Coleman said they would have voted for cloture. If those nine and all the Democrats (and "independents") had joined it would have had the needed sixty. As it was, four Democrats voted against cloture. Plus it's not certain that everyone who voted for cloture would end up voting for the bill.

But it looks like the alarmists could be getting close and the 2008 election is almost assured of increasing the number of Democratic senators. And we know the next president will not veto. It won't be so easy next year.

06-06-08, 05:38 PM
Another view:


Friday, June 06, 2008

The Full Story on Lieberman-Warner [Iain Murray]

As related by my colleague Myron Ebell:

It was fun while it lasted, but it didn't last nearly long enough.

Senate and House disciples of the cult of Al Gore complained for years that the time for talking and holding hearings on global warming was long past. It was time to do something about it! In the 2006 campaign, Democratic leaders promised to do just that once they were in the majority. Well, Democrats have been in the majority for a year and a half. Nearly every House and Senate committee has held a hearing on it. The committees of jurisdiction have held scores of hearings. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) even set up a select committee just to hold hearings on why immediate drastic action must be taken to save the world from global warming.

After all that jabber, Senator Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), Chairman of the Environment and Public Works Committee, finally brought her bill to the floor this week. It hardly made a squeak. It wasn't even a mouse. It was a slug. Although to be fair to Boxer, it must be noted that it was a very big slug — filled with 491 tons of hot air to be precise. The Senate voted on Monday evening to bring the Lieberman-Warner energy rationing bill, formerly S. 2191 but now S. 3036, to the floor.

By Tuesday afternoon, Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) was complaining that the (mostly Republican) opponents were dragging their feet. The nerve — they dared to talk about what the bill would do to raise people's gas and electricity prices and how many manufacturing jobs would be lost. Reid warned that he wouldn't put up with their delaying tactics much longer.

For comparison, as Senator Christopher Bond (R-MO) pointed out, the Senate debated the Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990 for five weeks and considered 180 amendments. The economic impact of Lieberman and Warner's monstrosity would be several hundred times greater.

The reason Reid started so quickly to prepare the ground to pull the bill is that Boxer and company were making a complete mess of the debate. On the other side, Senator James Inhofe (R-Okla.) was leading a brilliant operation involving a number of well-prepared Senators to expose the bill's countless problems and shortcomings.

On Wednesday just before 1 PM, Reid introduced on behalf of Boxer an amendment in the nature of a substitute. Whereas the Lieberman-Warner bill as passed out of committee in December was 150-some pages and the substitute that Boxer released on May 16 was about the same length, the surprise substitute was 491 pages. Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) immediately objected to the motion that the amendment be considered as read, so the Clerk then spent from 1 to 9:30 PM reading all 491 pages aloud. It gave Senators a chance to catch up on their fundraising.

The reason McConnell objected was to call attention to Reid's failure to keep his agreement to hold votes on at least three nominations for appeals court judges before the end of May. But taking all day to read it made another point relevant to the bill. Springing a new version on the Senate floor that is more than three times longer than the bill passed out of committee is outrageous. Reading it aloud gave citizens listening on C-SPAN some vague idea of the trillions of dollars of payoffs to special interests contained in the bill. But it will take weeks of study to find and analyze all the changes.

Reid then filed a motion to invoke cloture on debate and move to a vote on passage of the Boxer substitute. Not only would no amendments be debated, but Senators would be voting on cloture with almost no idea of what they were voting on. The cloture vote, which requires 60 yes votes, was held on Friday morning at 9. It failed 48 to 36. Leader Reid is expected to pull the bill from the floor later today. That will be it this year for stopping global warming in its tracks and diverting trillions of dollars from consumers to special interests.

I am astonished at the perseverance that the forces of darkness have mustered in this debate and the number of obstacles they overcame. (Reid has devoted more effort to getting post offices renamed for big donors.) It just shows what you can do when you're determined to save the planet. But they'll be back next year with a new president who supports cap-n-trade and probably more Democrats in Congress. This time was just for fun; next time will be deadly serious.
I'm glad to see Sen Inhofe (ranking minority member of the Environmental and Public Works committee) acknowledged since he knows more about global warming than the other 99 senators put together. But you sure wouldn't know he was even there from all the MSM stories which feature a whining Sen Boxer (chair of EPW) and never even mention Inhofe.

Yes, 2009 will be the real test.

06-06-08, 09:42 PM
Can alarmists ever admit to any significant error? Have they gone too far out on a limb?


Advice is poisoned by fear
Letters Blog | May 30, 2008 | 16 Comments

I HEAR on the scientific grapevine that CSIRO’s [Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation - Australia's national science agency] biggest problem when providing formal advice to the federal Government on the matter of climate change is to say nothing that can be interpreted as giving aid and comfort to the army of irresponsible sceptics out there who are doubtful about the dreadful consequences of global warming.

One can only feel sorry for the Government. Where can it go these days to get unbiased advice on the issue of global warming? Its official sources are poisoned by the fear among many scientists that they may be labelled by their colleagues and by their institutions as climate-change sceptics.

Basically, the problem is that the research community has gone so far along the path of frightening the life out of the man in the street that to recant publicly even part of the story would massively damage the reputation and political clout of science in general. And so, like corpuscles in the blood, researchers all over the world now rush in overwhelming numbers to repel infection by any idea that threatens the carefully cultivated belief in climatic disaster.

Garth Paltridge
Emeritus Professor and Honorary Research Fellow,
Institute of Antarctic and Southern Ocean Studies,
University of Tasmania
Would that more scientists would point out the hole the alarmists have dug themselves into.

06-07-08, 07:17 AM
Would that more scientists would point out the hole the alarmists have dug themselves into.

Heresy then and now:

The world is round, revolves around the sun, and ISN'T getting unduly hot.

In modern times, only one of these beliefs still gets you labeled a heretic. Of course, they have to put you to the rack as they can not longer afford the CO2 of burning you at the stake.

06-07-08, 10:34 AM
Enron wanted Lieberman-Warner type bill years ago. The perfect law for "regulatory robber barons."


Commentary - Timothy Carney: Enron’s favorite bill gets its day in the sun
Jun 6, 2008 by Timothy Carney, The Examiner

Global warming regulation hit the big stage this week, as the Senate proceeded to debate on the energy-regulation-and-subsidies bill known as Lieberman-Warner. The bill’s other names include “America’s Climate Security Act” and “S.2151,” but it includes so much of the big-government favoritism and regulatory profiteering desired by one former energy giant, it should probably be dubbed “The Enron Bill.”

Enron is not alive today to profit from the artificial markets, subsidies and other goodies in the measure aptly dubbed “the largest pork bill ever” by Sen. James Inhofe, R-Okla., but its spirit persists, embodied in today’s leading regulatory robber barons, General Electric, Alcoa and others.

In December 1997, hundreds of nations drafted the Kyoto Protocol on Climate Change, and a year later, President Clinton signed it. While the Clinton administration, including presidential candidate Al Gore, never pushed for Kyoto’s ratification, Enron lobbied furiously to get the U.S. on board.

Back on Aug. 4, 1997, Enron’s CEO Ken Lay met with Clinton and Gore to advocate for U.S. approval of Kyoto. Specifically, Lay was hoping the treaty would compel Congress to pass a “cap-and-trade” scheme: Manufacturers or energy companies would be prohibited from emitting greenhouse gases unless they “paid for” them with greenhouse gas allowances; if your company doesn’t have enough allowances to cover your emissions, you need to go out on the market and buy some, probably from someone who has reduced his or her emissions or earned allowances by planting trees or otherwise “offsetting” greenhouse gas emissions.

I’ve read the e-mails sent around Enron after Lay’s 1997 White House visit. “This will be good for Enron’s stock!” read one excited Enron memo, hopeful for Kyoto. Another declared that cap-and-trade would “do more to promote Enron’s business” than almost any other government policy could.

In late 1997, Lay put his name on an Austin American-Statesman op-ed boosting Kyoto, calling it “a tremendous opportunity to stimulate realistic climate solutions.” When Republicans took over the White House in 2001, Lay didn’t give up. He got the ear of Treasury Secretary Paul O’Neill hoping to get the Bush White House to push for Kyoto’s ratification.

How would Enron get rich off of Kyoto and cap-and-trade? In much the same ways today’s “responsible” corporations plan to profit from the constrained energy market caused by Lieberman-Warner.

First, Enron was the leader in natural-gas pipelines. Greenhouse gas restrictions increase the price of coal and oil, driving up demand for natural gas and thus natural-gas pipelines. Also, Enron planned on becoming the leading broker in greenhouse gas allowances. Just as it had made riches trading natural gas contracts, Enron planned to become a carbon dioxide dealer — buying up allowances, lobbying to pocket free allowances from government, and then selling them off.

Also — and this shows how these environmental laws can do little or nothing for the environment, while hurting consumers and profiting the companies with the biggest bottom line — Enron was building coal-fired power plants in Third World countries not covered by Kyoto; if America’s and Europe’s coal-fired plants had to shut down under greenhouse gas constraints, Enron would pay less for its coal.

Today, well-connected firms are lobbying for Lieberman and Warner’s Enron bill, which is the same environmentally dubious corporate boondoggle Enron had hoped Kyoto would spur.

General Electric has created a new business called GHG Services, which plans to pick up Enron’s CO2-dealing business, including winning free allowances through lobbying efforts.

Alcoa, similar to Enron’s coal gambit, makes much of its aluminum offshore, and so its energy-intensive manufacturing will be untouched by the Enron bill, while its lighter end-products (such as car frames) will be worth more.

Lieberman’s No. 1 donor, United Technologies, stands to profit handsomely from this bill’s research and development subsidies.

The early business coalition for cap-and-trade has become divided recently on the Enron Bill as it currently stands, and so it probably won’t become law until next year. But it’s all a bit sad — if this same bill had become law just seven years ago, the country and every family that pays utility bills, buys groceries and drives might be poorer, but those Enron shareholders would be much better off.
Alcoa, once the victim of one of the most wrongheaded anti-trust cases in history, has learned to play the government game. Are there still people who don't understand why some big businesses have jumped on the CAGW bandwagon? You can make more by hitting the business regulatory and subsidy jackpot than you can through honest work. And you get praised rather than prosecuted.

06-07-08, 01:01 PM
Are there still people who don't understand why some big businesses have jumped on the CAGW bandwagon? You can make more by hitting the business regulatory and subsidy jackpot than you can through honest work. And you get praised rather than prosecuted.
I don't follow this stuff much (what you post is about it), but even I had it figured out from day 1 what GE's intentions were, just because I watch NBC at night sometimes. The fact that the masses are completely blind to how things work is funny, sad, and frustrating all at once. :lol: :( :mad2:

The thing that annoys me the most is talking heads (and it doesn't matter whether it's CNN, MSNBC, or Fox News) going on about this stuff, pretending to be experts when they don't have a damn clue as to whether what they are reporting is the truth. Have they always been so irresponsible in their reporting, or am I just noticing it more now that I've "grown up?"

06-09-08, 09:25 AM
A couple weeks ago in the last thread I made this post about a bizarre study that "confirmed" the climate models' predictions of a heating in the tropical troposphere which has never taken place:


They did this by ignoring temperature readings by satellites and weather balloons, instead relying on wind measurements made by the same balloons.

Lubos Motl, string physicist and CAGW skeptic, has commented on his blog:


Sunday, June 08, 2008 ...
Sherwood, Allen, and radiosondes

The media recently wrote far-reaching comments about the latest Nature Geophysics article by Steven Sherwood and Robert Allen (Yale University):

Warming maximum in the tropical upper troposphere deduced from thermal winds. (http://www.pdfdownload.org/pdf2html/pdf2html.php?url=http%3A%2F%2Flubos.motl.googlepages.com%2Fsherwood-allen-ngeo-2008.pdf&images=yes)

The authors - or at least the media - have claimed that a new method to "measure" the tropical tropospheric temperatures has removed all contradictions between the theoretical and empirical warming rates in the troposphere.

Recall that the greenhouse-dominated models predict rapid warming in the troposphere, roughly 10 km above the equator. The satellite measurements (UAH MSU, RSS MSU) show an actual warming rate that is at least 10 times slower than the theoretical predictions. The data from balloons and radiosondes they carry, for example the Hadley Center data, confirm the satellite figures. Detailed numbers will be discussed below.

That seems to be a problem. Every acceptable solution to this problem must either find serious errors in both the satellite and balloon data or a serious error in the theoretical models (or both).

Steven Sherwood and his pre-PhD student, Robert Allen, use a different strategy. They pretend that the discrepancy doesn't exist at all. How do they do it? Well, they want you to believe that the measurements of the temperatures don't exist. Instead, they propose their own, idiosyncratic, elaborated "measurement" of the tropospheric temperatures. Well, there is one additional immediate problem: it's not really their own method, as we will see. ;-)

Sherwood & Allen vs Pielke Sr

They look at some patterns in the thermal (?) westerly winds, manipulate them to obtain a rather continuous function, and claim that this function of the winds data is ... a measurement of temperature that is apparently better than the thermometers. Their method is not really original: it is a small subset of the methods discussed by Roger Pielke Sr and two co-authors in 2006 and especially by Pielke Sr and four co-authors in 2001. See also Pielke's comments about his priority.

So the idea is that instead of proving global warming, you prove global blowing :-) and then you argue that blowing and warming sound similar, especially according to your model that links the two. This strategy has the advantage that when the climate begins to cool down, you can also say that global blowing is the same thing as global cooling and the cataclysmic warming can continuously "rotate" into a new kind of catastrophic cooling. :-)

The problems with the particular conclusions by Sherwood and Allen have been discussed by

Roger Pielke Sr, (http://climatesci.org/2008/06/04/comments-on-the-science-in-the-nature-paper-by-allen-and-sherwood/)

too. He is preparing a technical manuscript on that issue. The main drawback of their approach is circular reasoning. They want to demonstrate that the models are consistent with reality but what they actually call "reality" is extracted from the models, too.

More precisely, the relationship between the winds and the temperature is derived from the very same models that are shown to disagree with the actual temperature measurements by the balloons and satellites. So the arguments they show only support the compatibility of one particular theoretical prediction with the observations - namely the quantity describing winds as predicted by the very same models.

But a correct model should agree not only with one but with all observed quantities - especially with the temperature if this quantity is the main focus of your models. ;-)

The models also link this quantity related to winds to the temperature but the real measurements actually falsify the predicted temperature trend and the Yale authors don't change anything about that. To a large extent, they only demonstrate a "self-consistency" - which really means uniqueness of one prediction by the models that characterize the winds. It is not shocking that the predictions of such a model are self-consistent; it is much more non-trivial constraint that they should also be consistent with the real data.

Radiosondes vs models

Finally, I want to show the status of the "direct" predictions and measurements of the temperature and to mention two graphs from Climate Audit.


This chart, taken from RealClimate.ORG, shows the overall warming expected from the doubling of CO2 concentrations from 280 ppm before the industrial revolution to 560 ppm expected around the year 2100 (assuming business-as-usual, i.e. a pretty constant rate of CO2 emissions in the future), as predicted by the GISS model E, dominated by the greenhouse effect.

Look in the middle of the picture, above the equator. You see the dark red "hot spot" over there. At the height (y-axis) corresponding to the pressure of 200 hPa, you are in the middle of the dark red cloud where the total warming should be not only higher than 3 °C (between 3 °C and 14.6 °C) but much higher than that, probably around 5 °C or so. This figure (5 °C) is roughly 1.5 times the surface warming (around 3 °C according to the IPCC's central figure and around 1.8 °C according to the picture above) - a classical feature of the greenhouse models.

Now, in 50 years, we add about 100 ppm of CO2 and we should therefore induce more than 1/3 of the effect of the CO2 doubling. So in 50 years, the place above the equator where the pressure is 200 hPa should heat up by more than 5 °C / 3 = more than 1.5 °C. (The CO2 emissions in this 50-year period were actually closer to the "earlier" emissions that should have a higher warming impact, because of the logarithmic slowdown: so my figure is probably an underestimate.) Does this significant warming actually occur in reality?


This is the actual graph of this tropospheric temperature record as measured by the Hadley Center's radiosondes (balloons). The net warming during the last 50 years is at most of order 0.2 °C and probably much smaller than that: Steve McIntyre calculated that since the beginning of the "satellite era" in 1979, the balloon trend has been actually negative (cooling). At any rate, it is very close to zero - and it is certainly much smaller than the 1.5 °C of warming predicted by the greenhouse models, as explained in the previous paragraph.

And yes, March 2008, the most recent month they have released, was the HadAT2 200 hPa tropical radiosondes' coolest month at least since the late 1950s (since January 1958) - one that was only matched by 1 month in the early 1970s, namely January 1972 (both Jan 1972 and Mar 2008 had -1.4 °C in the column, check the link in this paragraph).

This place above the equator is the most natural place where the temperature should be measured if your aim is to verify the greenhouse theory of the climate - simply because the signal is predicted to be maximized in this region. And the observations are smaller than the predictions by an order of magnitude or more.

Now, one order of magnitude is not a detail. If you accept that it is fair to compare economics and climatology because their "typical" predictions are comparably inaccurate (and I think that it is fair), the order-of-magnitude discrepancy between the theory and the observations is similar to a prediction by a group of economists who use their "consensus models" to forecast that the GDP will grow (or drop) by 40% a year - because of some effect - but the reality is only 4%. It's a pretty bad prediction, even in the fuzzy context of economics, isn't it?

Now, I want to emphasize that we must be a priori very open-minded because there can exist problems both with the observations as well as with the models. On the other hand, when you look at the weather balloons and the radiosondes they carry (see the picture on the left side), it is not too easy to imagine that there is some serious problem with them. These radiosondes measure the temperature (and the wind speed/direction) by thermometers and transmit the resulting numbers to the terrestrial radio receivers; see the Wikipedia text about radiosondes.

Try to think hard and invent an explanation why such a simple system would be sending warming trends that are 10 times smaller than the "real" ones (predicted by the models). I don't know of such an explanation. But once you find one, you should be ready to solve 1 or 2 similar puzzles - namely why the completely different satellite methodologies also lead to the same negligible warming trend if the "real" trend prescribed by the IPCC should be approximately 10 times faster.

I think it is sensible to expect an explanation what's wrong with the balloon and satellite numbers before someone's presentation of certain numbers from some computer games has a chance to be considered as "reality" by sane people.

Good luck. Before you find your ingenious method to solve these key puzzles, I will continue to think that the IPCC predictions have pretty much been falsified because the order-of-magnitude discrepancy we observe is pretty much the most serious discrepancy that we could a priori expect and if that were not enough for falsification, nothing would be enough. The qualitative agreement in one quantity of minor importance (related to winds) is not enough to confirm your models if more important predictions (temperature) fail.

Now, the balloon data may be very non-uniform and the "local noise" in them can be high. But it is fair to say that if the actual (accurate) thermometers can't demonstrate any significant warming trend over there, the "life on Earth" probably won't die because of such a warming either. A deadly fever is usually strong enough to be visible by thermometers, especially by the most accurate ones created for this purpose. ;-)

So think hard but try to imagine that your assumptions could be incorrect, after all.

And that's the memo.
As always, Lubos hones in on the heart of the matter and demolishes silliness. One has to wonder how such crap gets published in peer reviewed journals. Oh wait, that's right. Those "peers" are trying to find the same "evidence" as the authors, "evidence" that backs up their preconceived conclusions, the data be damned.

06-09-08, 09:59 AM
Climate researcher Roy Spencer looks at the alarm over the falling levels in the Great Lakes and notes it has happened before. He then notes the contrasting reactions back then between those with common sense and the "experts":


June 9, 2008 8:30 AM

Bad Science
A grand tradition.

By Roy Spencer

With the failure of the Lieberman-Warner global-warming bill in the Senate last Friday, I am reminded of the long and grand tradition the scientific community has had in promoting “bad science.” (It is mere coincidence that the acronym for this term is “BS.”)

While the failure of the carbon cap-and-trade legislation was largely a result of economic concerns over what it would cost the country, its proponents will no doubt return next year with claims that no price is too great to save us from planetary destruction.

But I believe that the huge cost of “doing something” substantial about global warming will inevitably cause us to reexamine the science. Just how certain are we that recent warming really has been caused by SUVs spewing carbon dioxide and cows belching methane? After all, the greater the cost of the advertised fixes, the more certain we must be that the scientific consensus really is more than just a political statement.

And why should the science of global warming be so uncertain? Mostly because it is a whole lot easier to make scientific measurements than it is to figure out what those measurements are telling us about how the natural world works. The famous humorist and writer Mark Twain once said, “Get your facts first, then you can distort them as you please.”

I consider the theory that global warming is caused by mankind to be just one more example of the continuing tradition scientists have of extrapolating well beyond what they think they know. In his 1883 book Life on the Mississippi, Mark Twain also expressed perfectly the proclivity of scientists for turning observations of the natural world into long range predictions which were clearly outlandish.

Twain humorously extrapolated an observed change in the length of the Mississippi River forward and back in time by millions of years to demonstrate the absurdity of the conclusions one can reach when one assumes something currently observed will continue to happen at the same rate, indefinitely.

Twain famously concluded, “There is something fascinating about science. One gets such wholesale returns of conjecture from such a trifling investment of fact.”

Possibly the most prolific purveyor of failed environmental predictions is the MacArthur Foundation “genius grant” recipient, Stanford biologist Paul Ehrlich. Beginning in the 1960s, Dr. Ehrlich embarked on a series of premonitions that included dead oceans by 1979, hundreds of thousands of smog deaths in cities, pesticide-related cancers reducing average life expectancy to 42 years by 1980, and such an abuse of pesticides that would cause other countries to launch a nuclear attack on the U.S. out of fear of global poisoning.

For some strange reason, the more dire the prediction, the better chance of receiving a prestigious award for scaring the rest of humanity with it — Al Gore’s Nobel Peace Prize comes to mind.

Now, I am assuming that your local newspaper has already kept you sufficiently warned concerning the many different ways that you will suffer a premature death, most of which are now ultimately the result of manmade global warming. But one you might not have heard about is the recent decline in Great Lakes water levels which is (of course) also due to global warming. For instance, Lake Superior water levels in 2007 reached near-record lows.

I say “near-record” because a similar decline was observed in the early 1920s which culminated in the record low lake level of 1926. From reading media reports of the 1926 event, one can see the continuing tradition of experts to predict events that non-experts (the public) recognize to be foolish. A Duluth Herald editorial at the time gave the common sense explanation for low lake levels:

The weather bureau has issued a report on low lake levels…the Great Lakes watershed is in a cycle of light precipitation…levels will come back when…the dry cycle is succeeded by a wet one. There have been dry cycles before….and for every dry cycle there has been a wet one to follow…
But the “experts” had a very different take on the issue, as reported in the May 27, 1926 issue of Daily Mining Journal:

Ultimate extinction of the American side of the falls at Niagara is mathematically certain unless water levels in the Great Lakes are raised.
I have a difficult time reading that statement without laughing. But I suspect it wasn’t meant to be a joke.
I think one should be wary of the overused phrase "If present trends continue..." because they almost never do.

06-09-08, 10:14 AM
The increased CO2 and supposed sharp warming which is supposedly caused by it and is supposed to wipe out species at the rate of a giant meteor strike seem to be doing just the opposite:


In praise of CO2
With less heat and less carbon dioxide, the planet could become less hospitable and less green
Lawrence Solomon, Financial Post Published: Saturday, June 07, 2008

Planet Earth is on a roll! GPP is way up. NPP is way up. To the surprise of those who have been bearish on the planet, the data shows global production has been steadily climbing to record levels, ones not seen since these measurements began.

GPP is Gross Primary Production, a measure of the daily output of the global biosphere --the amount of new plant matter on land. NPP is Net Primary Production, an annual tally of the globe's production. Biomass is booming. The planet is the greenest it's been in decades, perhaps in centuries.

Until the 1980s, ecologists had no way to systematically track growth in plant matter in every corner of the Earth -- the best they could do was analyze small plots of one-tenth of a hectare or less. The notion of continuously tracking global production to discover the true state of the globe's biota was not even considered.

Then, in the 1980s, ecologists realized that satellites could track production, and enlisted NASA to collect the data. For the first time, ecologists did not need to rely on rough estimates or anecdotal evidence of the health of the ecology: They could objectively measure the land's output and soon did -- on a daily basis and down to the last kilometre.

The results surprised Steven Running of the University of Montana and Ramakrishna Nemani of NASA, scientists involved in analyzing the NASA data. They found that over a period of almost two decades, the Earth as a whole became more bountiful by a whopping 6.2%. About 25% of the Earth's vegetated landmass -- almost 110 million square kilometres -- enjoyed significant increases and only 7% showed significant declines. When the satellite data zooms in, it finds that each square metre of land, on average, now produces almost 500 grams of greenery per year.

Why the increase? Their 2004 study, and other more recent ones, point to the warming of the planet and the presence of CO2, a gas indispensable to plant life. CO2 is nature's fertilizer, bathing the biota with its life-giving nutrients. Plants take the carbon from CO2 to bulk themselves up -- carbon is the building block of life -- and release the oxygen, which along with the plants, then sustain animal life. As summarized in a report last month, released along with a petition signed by 32,000 U. S. scientists who vouched for the benefits of CO2: "Higher CO2 enables plants to grow faster and larger and to live in drier climates. Plants provide food for animals, which are thereby also enhanced. The extent and diversity of plant and animal life have both increased substantially during the past half-century."

Lush as the planet may now be, it is as nothing compared to earlier times, when levels of CO2 and Earth temperatures were far higher. In the age of the dinosaur, for example, CO2 levels may have been five to 10 times higher than today, spurring a luxuriantly fertile planet whose plant life sated the immense animals of that era. Planet Earth is also much cooler today than during the hothouse era of the dinosaur, and cooler than it was 1,000 years ago during the Medieval Warming Period, when the Vikings colonized a verdant Greenland. Greenland lost its colonies and its farmland during the Little Ice Age that followed, and only recently started to become green again.

This blossoming Earth could now be in jeopardy, for reasons both natural and man-made. According to a growing number of scientists, the period of global warming that we have experienced over the past few centuries as Earth climbed out of the Little Ice Age is about to end. The oceans, which have been releasing their vast store of carbon dioxide as the planet has warmed -- CO2 is released from oceans as they warm and dissolves in them when they cool -- will start to take the carbon dioxide back. With less heat and less carbon dioxide, the planet could become less hospitable and less green, especially in areas such as Canada's Boreal forests, which have been major beneficiaries of the increase in GPP and NPP.

Doubling the jeopardy for Earth is man. Unlike the many scientists who welcome CO2 for its benefits, many other scientists and most governments believe carbon dioxide to be a dangerous pollutant that must be removed from the atmosphere at all costs. Governments around the world are now enacting massive programs in an effort to remove as much as 80% of the carbon dioxide emissions from the atmosphere.

If these governments are right, they will have done us all a service. If they are wrong, the service could be all ill, with food production dropping world wide, and the countless ecological niches on which living creatures depend stressed. The second order effects could be dire, too. To bolster food production, humans will likely turn to energy intensive manufactured fertilizers, depleting our store of non-renewable resources. Techniques to remove carbon from the atmosphere also sound alarms. Carbon sequestration, a darling of many who would mitigate climate change, could become a top inducer of earthquakes, according to Christian Klose, a geohazards researcher at Columbia University's Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory. Because the carbon sequestration schemes tend to be located near cities, he notes, carbon-sequestration-caused earthquakes could exact an unusually high toll.

Amazingly, although the risks of action are arguably at least as real as the risks of inaction, Canada and other countries are rushing into Earth-altering carbon schemes with nary a doubt. Environmentalists, who ordinarily would demand a full-fledged environmental assessment before a highway or a power plant can be built, are silent on the need to question proponents or examine alternatives.

Earth is on a roll. Governments are too. We will know soon enough if we're rolled off a cliff.
Those scientists cited in the article may be surprised but those of us who have been taking note of the beneficial effects from increased CO2 instead of only the supposed bad ones seen by the alarmists, are not surprised at all.

06-09-08, 07:54 PM
Roy Spencer may be figuring out one of the reasons why climate models are so screwed up and always get it wrong (not that that stops them):


Monday, June 09, 2008
Has Global Warming Research Misinterpreted Cloud Behavior

By Roy Spencer, University of Alabama Hunstville

Climate experts agree that the seriousness of manmade global warming depends greatly upon how clouds in the climate system respond to the small warming tendency from the extra carbon dioxide mankind produces. To figure that out, climate researchers usually examine natural, year-to-year fluctuations in clouds and temperature to estimate how clouds will respond to humanity’s production of greenhouse gases.

When researchers observe natural changes in clouds and temperature, they have traditionally assumed that the temperature change caused the clouds to change, and not the other way around. To the extent that the cloud changes actually cause temperature change, this can ultimately lead to overestimates of how sensitive Earth’s climate is to our greenhouse gas emissions. This seemingly simple mix-up between cause and effect is the basis of a new paper that will appear in the “Journal of Climate.” The paper’s lead author, Dr. Roy W. Spencer, a principal research scientist at The University of Alabama in Huntsville, believes the work is the first step in demonstrating why climate models produce too much global warming.

Spencer and his co-author, principal research scientist William (Danny) Braswell, used a simple climate model to demonstrate that something as seemingly innocuous as daily random variations in cloud cover can cause year-to-year variation in ocean temperature that looks like—but isn’t—“positive cloud feedback,” a warmth-magnifying process that exists in all major climate models. “Our paper is an important step toward validating a gut instinct that many meteorologists like myself have had over the years,” said Spencer, “that the climate system is dominated by stabilizing processes, rather than destabilizing processes—that is, negative feedback rather than positive feedback.”

The paper doesn’t disprove the theory that global warming is manmade. Instead, it offers an alternative explanation for what we see in the climate system which has the potential for greatly reducing estimates of mankind’s impact on Earth’s climate. “Since the cloud changes could conceivably be caused by known long-term modes of climate variability—such as the Pacific Decadal Oscillation, or El Nino and La Nina—some, or even most, of the global warming seen in the last century could simply be due to natural fluctuations in the climate system,” Spencer said. Read abstract here.
I wonder why the alarmists never question the nonsense about runaway warming and tipping points. Apart from a few exceptions where huge factors may have changed climate (snowball earth, supervolcanoes, meteor hits - a little CO2 won't do it), climate stays relatively stable which implies stabilizing forces, i.e. negative feedbacks are the norm. As I and others have said before, the alarmists have no sense of history (or don't want one). They will keep on ridiculing studies that show negative feedbacks, even though that is what is seemingly consistent with reality. It's their beloved, elusive, magical positive feedbacks which are inconsistent with the historical record.

06-10-08, 09:01 AM
Climate researcher Roy Spencer looks at the alarm over the falling levels in the Great Lakes and notes it has happened before. He then notes the contrasting reactions back then between those with common sense and the "experts":


I think one should be wary of the overused phrase "If present trends continue..." because they almost never do.
We have a place on Green Bay, and dad has pictures from when he was a little kid there in the 1960s...the water was lower then than now. When I spent my summers there in the 80s and early 90s, they had to build up the shoreline to prevent flooding. So in 40 years it went from being very low to very high back to very low.

Somehow I doubt global warming was to blame...

06-10-08, 10:24 AM
There was a true weather-related disaster yesterday about 50 miles from where I live:


TUE., JUN 10, 2008 - 8:06 AM
Update: Lake vanishes as residents watch; some schools canceled today
By GEORGE HESSELBERG and RON SEELY Wisconsin State Journal

LAKE DELTON — Lake Delton, a 267-acre water playland for thousands of tourists each summer, drained Monday after a portion of the sandy lakeshore was breached following heavy rains and took four houses with it.

"The lake is gone," said Greg Matthews, a spokesman for the state Department of Natural Resources' South Central region. No injuries were reported.

The dam itself held, but a section of shoreline did not, washing out Highway A and creating a 400- to 500-foot wide outlet to the Wisconsin River, 700 feet away. A swirling chocolate malt of angry liquid escaped through the gap, spreading into the marsh and carrying houses, trees and an upside-down pontoon boat with it.

"That house had everything you can imagine and now it's all gone," said Don Kubenik, of suburban Milwaukee, whose $500,000, 2,800-square-foot second home he built in 2003 was one of those that snapped into pieces Monday. "My boat's gone. The pier's gone. Everything is gone."

Meanwhile, several area schools canceled classes today for the second day in a row as the region grappled with flooding. Schools in the Columbus, Fall River and River Valley districts called off classes.

And more rain was possible again today, according to the National Weather Service.

On Monday, as the nearly 700 million gallons of water in Lake Delton surged downstream, DNR officials worried about other dams and levees. The dam that holds back Mirror Lake was watched closely all day but held and was out of danger by late Monday, Matthews said, assuring the popular Mirror Lake State Park would retain its scenic lake.

Gov. Jim Doyle vowed the state would work to replenish the lake, which is normally about 8 feet deep and is surrounded by about 20 resorts.

State Sen. Dale Schultz, R-Richland Center, who represents part of the Wisconsin Dells, said the lake's disappearance would be devastating to the local economy and to tourism.

"I think it's a catastrophe," he said. "There's a large amount of physical damage here and when you add that up with the economic impact, it's going to be enormous."

Watched in disbelief

Residents along Lake Delton watched in disbelief Monday morning as their lake vanished, as surely as though someone had pulled a plug.

Mark Tylka witnessed the lake's disappearing act from Cliffside Resort and Suites, which his parents own on Lake Delton. He said he walked down to the lake at about 10:30 a.m. and the resort's docks were under water from the weekend rains. Suddenly, the floodwaters started dropping.

"Within 20 minutes of when I got there, it had gone down 16 inches," said Tylka. He said he watched amazed as furniture, docks and a pontoon boat floated by on the receding waters.

"We lost about 2 feet in 45 minutes, and it kept going and going," said Kate Jesa who, with her family, owns Delton Oaks Resort on Hiawatha Drive on the former lakeshore of this popular tourist destination.

The resort was at half-capacity, about 15 families, when the rain started Saturday at noon and didn't quit until 10 p.m. Sunday. By that time, the water was about 5 feet above normal and the generally placid pool was a rending, twisting brown ribbon.

From the back yard of Jesa's resort Monday afternoon, the lake's tree stumps and a host of old concrete anchors could be seen. One boy was pulling a small kayak along the middle of the old Duck Creek channel.

Cranes stood serenely, barely wetting their tail feathers, in what was once several feet of water, a body that supported the famous Wisconsin Dells Ducks and provided the ramp-up speed path for Tommy Bartlett's ski show.

At midday Monday, the Wisconsin Ducks outlets were closed, as was Tommy Bartlett's. Jesa said she was waiting for the smell to begin.

"This was about as much an act of God as you can get," said Jesa, noting that their two piers were high and dry and a tall water sled sat incongruously.

DNR shocked

Russ Rasmussen, director of watershed management for the DNR, said DNR officials were as shocked as everyone else at the loss of the lake. He said the dam across Duck Creek had been inspected and did hold during the flood, though water was flowing around it. Embankments on either side of such dams aren't inspected, however, so any weaknesses there would not necessarily be apparent. And the area that was washed away was a considerable distance from the dam itself.

Rasmussen said restoring the lake will be more involved than simply filling in the new channel. "Whatever goes in there will have to be built to dam standards," he added.

By Monday afternoon, the new channel that funneled the lake into the Wisconsin River had become as much an attraction as anything else in the venerable tourist area. Located at the end of Bowman Road, through a nature area on a narrow dead-end street, the area drew a small but steady stream of people.

Dionne Leonhardt was in a boat on the Wisconsin River near the new channel and couldn't believe what she was seeing.

"It was absolutely mind-blowing," Leonhardt said. "There were pontoon boats coming through like toys. ... And trees were falling down like they were just toothpicks."

People wading in what remains of Lake Delton near the Tommy Bartlett Show, the location of water ski shows.

more pictures (http://www.madison.com/wsj/topstories/index.php?ntgalleryid=290293)

One of the most amazing things about this is that I haven't yet heard anyone blame it on global warming. I figure it's only a matter of time.

I've been to that ski show several times and I've ridden on the Ducks.

I'm sure no one ever thought this could happen. 700 million gallons of water drained out in about two hours, I've heard.

06-10-08, 10:35 AM
One of the most amazing things about this is that I haven't yet heard anyone blame it on global warming. I figure it's only a matter of time.
It didn't take long even if these are only stupid comments on a local weekly newspaper blog:


Selected posts:

Climate Change is an ugly thing. . . . .
Global warming...you know. All this rain because of the ice melting and there being more moisture in the atmosphere...
As in having a large amount of human-produced carbon dioxide in the atmosphere which holds heat and sunlight in and so causes the Earth's temperature to rise?
And so? Yes there were ice ages and warming periods. But the warming we're experiencing now is much more severe and in a shorter time span then those. And we know that we have caused it to some extent because of the rapid release of carbon into the atmosphere by our burning of fossil fuels which have been stored in the ground for thousands of years.
I'm sure we'll get the "experts" soon.

06-10-08, 10:48 AM
Some clips:


06-10-08, 10:53 AM
That's some insane footage.

How exactly do you go about filling a lake back up? :/

06-10-08, 04:10 PM
When it's hot it's news, when it's cold it's chopped liver.


Will Media Report Cold Spells This Summer or Only the Heatwaves?
By Noel Sheppard | June 10, 2008 - 11:13 ET

Media have been falling all over themselves to report the recent heatwave in the East, but have been ignoring the cold spells happening in other parts of the country at virtually the same time.

For instance, did you know that the first week of June was the coldest in Seattle since 1891? Or that Aspen is actually re-opening this weekend to offer winter sports enthusiasts some rare June skiing in the area? Or how about the fact that unusually cold waters off of Nova Scotia are harming this year's lobster crop?

Aren't such unseasonal weather events just as newsworthy as heatwaves in summer? Or must they be ignored to fit the media's global warming template?

Assuming the latter, just to add some balance, let's first check in with the Seattle Times to see how Nobel Laureate Al Gore's bogeyman is impacting that part of the country (emphasis added in all subsequent articles):

Think it's cold? You have good reason.

Seattle just experienced the coldest first week of June, according to climate records dating to 1891, said Cliff Mass, University of Washington metrologist. Both 1999 and 2008 share the record, with 1917 falling in second place, he said. "Just wait until tomorrow," he said, when temperatures are going to be even colder.

A heavy snow warning has been issued for the Washington Cascades and Olympics as a storm from the Gulf of Alaska plows into the state tonight.

Didn't hear about Seattle's cold spell? Well, how about the one in Montana?

The Missoula Parks and Recreation Department has decided to close the Splash Montana Waterpark this week, because cold weather is forecast.

Or Nova Scotia?

Water temperature played a big part in the last minute scramble that closed the season with temperatures falling so low the lobsters were not crawling.

In order for the lobsters to crawl into a trap the water has to be at least over the 40-degree mark and Crouse said the spring season has hardly any times when the conditions are right.

“Our spring is just not viable,” he said. “Global warming is having the opposite effect for us and we are seeing the temperatures of the water stay lower for longer.”

And finally, June skiing in Colorado:

The Aspen Skiing Company said Monday that it will open up Aspen Mountain from June 13 to 15 for skiers and snowboarders.

The company says record winter snowfall has left the mountain covered with snow, leaving behind an average of more than 3 feet of snow on the upper slopes.

Are any of these weather-related events newsworthy? Or are temperatures only important to media when they validate the global warming myth?

*****Update: Shrimp season also delayed in Mississippi as a result of colder than normal Gulf temperatures (h/t NBer tater).
I found the quote "Global warming is having the opposite effect for us..." interesting. I don't know whether the person was being ironic, scoffing at the silliness of the CAGW theory or actually thinks global warming caused the cold. After all, global warming does cause everything, as we well know.

To answer the writer's question, the media have ignored the cooler temperatures for more than six months now. They are not going to change. But then, I'm sure the writer knows that and his question was rhetorical.

Lest someone point out that the writer got his quotes from the media which proves they are not ignoring the cold, I would point out that local media cannot very well ignore what's happening right there. The eastern heatwave is a much bigger story nationwide. Many stories are telling of the heat in the eat, the floods in the midwest but are strangely silent about the cold out west.

Finally, the Seattle article (if you want to read the entire story, you can click the link in my link) says nothing about global warming or climate change. I wonder, if they were having a heatwave would it be brought up?

But why just wonder, ABC news managed to talk to Stanford alarmist Stephen Schneider (who once upon a time was alarmed about global cooling) who clearly wanted to imply that "we" are responsible for the heat: "While this heat wave -- like all other heat waves -- is made by Mother Nature, we've been fooling around by turning the knob and making it a little bit hotter. We've already increased, by 35 percent, the amount of carbon dioxide, which traps heat. We've added 150 percent more methane, which also traps heat."


06-10-08, 04:29 PM
We are constantly told that Europe, Canada, Australia and New Zealand are "doing something" about global warming. "They care about the planet." Well, surprise, surprise, Europeans and the others don't want to commit economic suicide any more than we do. But don't expect to read about it in your local paper or see it on the network or cable news.


June 10, 2008
Dirty US Media Secret: ‘Rest of the World’ Rebels Against Climate Taxes
TBlumer @ 2:01 pm

The supposedly surprising rejection of the Lieberman-Warner climate bill last week had an element that Old Media in the US hasn’t covered, but is very relevant.

While the press is ever eager to jump on politicians who fly in the face of supposed “world opinion” when it goes against US positions and traditions, it has been virtually silent over how “the rest of the world” has been rejecting the true linchpin of government climate policies: supposedly climate change-related higher taxes and fees. Surely some of the green-leaning Senators who were supposedly on board but voted against cloture were not blind to this.

Consider the following:

* Germany — “German Car Tax Plan to Be Delayed: Government.”

* In Canada, a sympathetic columnist cautions the Liberal Party, which seems to think that the road back into power is through green taxes, about “The Suicidal Allure of a Carbon Tax.”

* Australia — “The Sun Sets on Rudd’s Climate Change Credibility.”

* New Zealand — “Emissions Bill Hanging by Thread”

Each story is about how a government or party is finding that citizens/voters are not at all keen on reducing their living standards in the name of supposed environmental purity.

The biggest media blackout is over the political situation in Great Britain, where Tony Blair’s successor Gordon Brown hangs by a thread, largely because of his radical environmental initiatives.

Brown continues to push his “Green Road Tax” on “environmentally unfriendly cars.” Poorer Britons stand to be hit hardest, while his environmental minister plays the save-the-planet card:

Owners of the most polluting cars in band M will pay £440 (about $870) in tax. And from April 2010, people buying the most polluting cars would pay a one-off “showroom tax” of up to £950 (about $1,900).

(Environmental Minister Joan) Ruddock added: “What we can’t do is lose sight of the environment agenda because this is everybody’s future, the future of the planet.”

She denied the retrospective aspect of the policy was unfair.

“Over a 10 year period…I think the direction we have been going in has been clear to people at the time,” she said.
In other words, according to Ms. Ruddock, “Your crystal balls should have told you these taxes were coming.”

Two weeks ago, a one-day strike by lorry drivers (truckers) over high fuel prices shut down London’s roads in what was called the “capital’s largest-ever fuel protest.”

If most of all of this is news to you, it’s because the US press is studiously ignoring it. New York Times stories about Brown’s situation on May 14 and May 23 have not a word about the Green Road Tax, even though many Labour MPs have been calling it a “ticking time bomb” for several weeks. Wire-service stories have also been few and far between.

There are three lessons here:

* The tax plans environmentalists want invariably end up taking their pound of flesh from the people they supposedly care about the most.

* Once people see through it, they rebel.

* Politicians interested in self-preservation aren’t about to commit political suicide in the name of greenness. Their best hope is that the news media keep details of the costs away from public view until after legislation passes — a tough task indeed in the New Media Age.

Tuan Jim
06-10-08, 04:37 PM
Here's an interesting article I found today. It probably should go in the oil thread but I feel like rebelling against the system:


Oil price crisis
Hidden agenda seems to be guiding it
by S.K. Sharma

Galloping prices of oil in the international market have severely impacted the financial health of the oil importing countries due to unprecedented inflationary pressure. Crude prices have more than doubled during last one year from $65 to an unprecedented level of $ 139 per barrel. All the financial pundits are perplexed at this exponential growth and nobody is clear as to when this price rise juggernaut will stop.

Some officials associated with oil business are predicting that the oil prices will touch $200 or more. Various reasons such as; natural and man-made constraints in oil supply and demand, lack of spare capacity with oil producers, peaking of oil production, weakening of dollar and role of speculators are being put forward to explain this unimaginable price levels.

One of the most frequently quoted reasons is the mismatch between supply and demand of oil. International Energy Agency March 2008 report showed that there has been a 3.8 per cent increase in oil supply during last one year, which was more than the average of five-year production levels. On the other hand , global oil consumption grew by just 0.7 per cent during this period, the weakest growth since 2001 and half of the last ten year average. In spite of this production increase, the oil price rose by 57 percent during this period and are continuously increasing. There appears to be some other reason than mismatch between supply and demand put forward by the analyst to explain the present surge in oil prices.

Wall Street Journal has attributed the recent price rise to the lack of crude “cushion” in the system at merely 1 per cent amounting to 1 million barrels per day out of total consumption of 85 million barrels per day. Any bottleneck in production as a result of natural or man-made accidents or incidents create a scare in the market resulting in volatile sentiments. This has been effectively refuted by the current president of OPEC, who has emphatically stated that they have at present 3 million barrels per day excess capacity. If the figures of non-OPEC producers is added, the spare capacity is more than sufficient to take care of any major eventuality.

Major oil users of the world like the USA, OECD states and Japan have created strategic oil reserves to tide over these eventualities. Approximately 4.1 billion barrels of oil are held in strategic reserves in the world.It appears that an artificial scare of low spare capacity is being created by the vested interest to further fuel the volatility in oil prices.

Another theory being propagated by the oil analysts is that the world “oil reserves peak” either has already occurred or will occur in 2010/2015 and after that there will be downhill for the oil production capacity. Recent rigorous simulation and modeling done by EIA shows that peak will occur only beyond 2030 and there is no need to get alarmed . This conclusion is being sported by the fact that there has been a net addition of 277 billion barrels in the world oil reserves of 1317 billion barrels between 2000-2007 when net investment in oil exploration was very low. This shows that the prediction of oil doom is far fetched.

The main question then is who is driving the oil price juggernaut, due to which during last three years world has paid an
additional $ 3 trillion.

A look at the main oil players shows that there are three distinct entities, namely private companies, OPEC and non-OPEC countries. Due to nationalisation of oil assets by oil producing countries, nearly 77 per cent of the world production comes from national oil companies of different oil producing countries. Many of these have political agenda rather than commercial considerations.

MNCs on their own have a limited role in manipulating oil production on large-scale as only 7 per cent of world’s oil reserves are in the countries which allow these MNCs a free hand. However, they have the resources and expertise in influencing market sentiments by planting distorted analyses through their present and former executives to create doomsday scenarios.

To put oil constraint rumours at rest some oil producing countries need to substantially increase their production. Capacity of OPEC to drastically change the oil dynamics has reduced considerably as 65 per cent of the total world production at present is in the hands of non-OPEC members.

Russia has the largest production levels and spare capacity to change the production dynamics. However, its oil production, which at one point even surpassed that of Saudi Arabia has reduced during last two years. It is debatable whether it was really due to peaking problems, as is being made or a deliberate act for escalating oil prices. The second option looks more plausible as Russia has been one of the greatest beneficiary of the boom in oil prices. It earns an additional $ 2 billion for every $1 increase in the international oil price.

A few years ago Russian economy was a basket case with its defaulting on international loans payments and facing international humiliation. Thanks to the oil price boom Russia has become the new energy king and has one of largest surplus reserves of foreign exchange in its history. Putin has understood the role of oil as a most potent weapon and played a key role by his oil diplomacy along with Venezuela and Iran to turn its full impact on western economies with a more deadly impact than nuclear weapons in the cold war.

Saudi Arabia used to act as a spoilsport in earlier attempts to raise oil prices under pressure from the US. Now it appears to have given its tacit support to new dispensation of oil turks led by Russia to shore up its dwindling economy and insulate itself from reduced returns due to decline of US dollar by 13.4 per cent in the last year.

OPEC claims that their net export revenue per capita is just 55 per cent of what it was in 1981 and there is scope for doubling the oil prices from 2007 level so as to strengthen their own economies. Thus, a figure of $ 200 per barrel is quite plausible in new future.

Some of the OPEC members claim that they have subsidised the world economy for too long at their own expenses. This was the main reason that George Bush could not push Saudi Arabia to increase its production substantially to calm the oil price storm and had to come back empty handed.

The telling impact of oil weapon has given flip to another idea of Putin to form a gas cartel on oil lines to push up gas prices in foreseeable future.

Another faceless but deadlier player than OPEC has emerged on the oil scene in the form of speculators. Oil speculators have stockpiled via the future market the equivalent of 1.1 billion barrels of petroleum, which is eight times the oil the US has added to its strategic petroleum reserves over five years or the increase in demand of oil in China over the last five years, which is growing at the rate of 20 per cent per year. This appears to be one of the major causes of runaway oil prices. According to The Economist, about $ 260 billion has been invested in to the commodity market, which is up nearly 20 times from what it was in 2003. The stimulus has been a small margin of 5-7 per cent required in the US in the commodity market.

The implications of this low margin are that the speculators with a mere $ 260 billion are able to take positions on approximately $ 5 trillion in the future market. It is estimated that oil accounts for more than half of these bets. It is alleged that the oil market has turned in to a gambling parlour.

Four financial companies turned oil traders namely Goldmen Sach, J.P.Morgan Chase, Citigroup and Morgan and Stanley now determine the oil prices and only they are aware who is entering in the oil future market. It is also alleged that staggering oil earning by oil producers are being pumped into future market to further maximise their profits. Analysts also claim that investors ruined by real estate meltdown, stocks, shares and bonds during last one year have jumped into the oil market and are making up their losses. Cuts in US interest rate and hedging against fall in dollar and inflation has also diverted the attention of investors to commodity market.

Seasoned oil analysts claim that out of $ 130 per barrel of oil price, $ 50-60 are the speculator’s premium. Some allege that there may be a tacit support of US government to oil speculators as strategic reserves are being filled to the brim at a time when the oil prices are touching new high, instead of using them to cool the runaway oil prices.

Alternatively, it might be a precursor of some geopolitical event of staggering proportions in the Middle East, which is likely to further escalate oil prices.

This shows that a tectonic shift for determining the international oil prices has taken place where oil producers and speculators are working as a cartel to fuel the oil price fire. The recent meeting of the major oil importing countries is a step in the right direction and they should join hands and devise ways to stem this new trend which will otherwise ruin the international monetary and political system.

The writer is Professor Emeritus, Panjab University, Chandigarh

yessss, more oil than CAGW, but I stand by my random posts.

06-10-08, 05:00 PM
Yet another study showing corals have a much greater ability to adapt than they are given credit for by the alarmists who constantly say they are going to be wiped out by global warming and just as constantly ignore all the studies which contradict that conclusion.


Acclimation to Thermal Stress in Reef-Building Corals Reference
Middlebrook, R., Hoegh-Guldberg, O. and Leggat, W. 2008. The effect of thermal history on the susceptibility of reef-building corals to thermal stress. The Journal of Experimental Biology 211: 1050-1056.

What was done

The authors collected branches of the reef-building coral Acropora aspera -- which contains the dinoflagellate symbiont Symbiodinium (clade C3) -- from three large colonies on the reef flat adjacent to the Heron Island Research Station at the southern end of Australia's Great Barrier Reef. Multiple upward-growing branch tips were placed on racks immersed in running seawater within four 750-liter tanks that were maintained at the mean local ambient temperature (27°C) and exposed to natural reef-flat summer daily light levels. Then, two weeks prior to a simulated bleaching event -- where water temperature was raised to a value of 34°C for a period of six days -- they boosted the water temperature in one of the tanks to 31°C for 48 hours, while in another tank they boosted it to 31°C for 48 hours one week before the simulated bleaching event. In the third tank they had no pre-heating treatment, while in the fourth tank they had no pre-heating nor any simulated bleaching event. At different points throughout the study, they measured photosystem II efficiency, xanthophyll and chlorophyll a concentrations, and Symbiodinium densities.

What was learned

Middlebrook et al. report that the symbionts of the corals that were exposed to the 48-hour pre-bleaching thermal stress "were found to have more effective photoprotective mechanisms," including "changes in non-photochemical quenching and xanthophyll cycling," and they further determined that "these differences in photoprotection were correlated with decreased loss of symbionts, with those corals that were not pre-stressed performing significantly worse, losing over 40% of their symbionts and having a greater reduction in photosynthetic efficiency," whereas "pre-stressed coral symbiont densities were unchanged at the end of the bleaching."

What it means

In the words of the three researchers, "this study conclusively demonstrates that thermal stress events two weeks and one week prior to a bleaching event provide significantly increased thermal tolerance to the coral holobiont, suggesting that short time-scale thermal adaptation can have profound effects on coral bleaching." In addition, they say that "both corals and Symbiodinium have been shown to possess a wide variety of genes that encode for stress response proteins, which can impart protection, indicating that a more comprehensive study is required to elucidate all of the underlying mechanisms of thermal bleaching." All things considered, therefore, it may well be that earth's reef-building corals are not nearly as helpless before the specter of possible future global warming as the world's climate alarmists have made them out to be.
And note that in the real world, ocean waters are not going to heat up from, say, 30ºC to 34ºC overnight. It is going to be much more gradual giving the corals plenty of time to be mildly stressed at first and then be able to adapt later.

I have been making posts about these studies for a couple of years now. I used to go back every time there was a new one and cite the preceding ones. But I have never seen a word of them refuted (they are simply ignored) and they now seem well established. The alarmists will undoubtedly keep on churning out the doomsaying, never revealing for a second that it's baloney.

And again, as I have said many times, corals have survived for millions of years through far worse than what we are seeing now. Common sense should be enough to tell us that they are not going to be wiped out by a fraction of a degree of warming or by a tiny lowering of pH. It is good though that research is showing us how and why they survive.

06-10-08, 05:07 PM
When corals actually are harmed is it global warming or... something else?


Humans, Cosmetic Sunscreens and Coral Reefs Reference
Danovaro, R., Bongiorni, L., Corinaldesi, C., Giovannelli, D., Damiani, E., Astolfi, P., Greci, L. and Pusceddu, A. 2008. Sunscreens cause coral bleaching by promoting viral infections. Environmental Health Perspectives 116: 441-447.

What was done

The authors conducted a series of independent in situ studies in different parts of the world, including the Pacific, Atlantic and Indian Oceans, in an effort to evaluate the impact of cosmetic sunscreens on hard corals (Acropora, Stylophora pistillata, and Millepora complanata) and their symbiotic algae. At each ocean location, coral branches were exposed to varying amounts of sunscreens and common ultra violet filters contained in them. The amount of subsequent coral bleaching was then determined via colorimetric analysis of digital photos taken at the beginning of the study and at various intervals throughout the experiment.

What was learned

At all study sites and at all sampling times, the addition of sunscreen, even at very low concentrations (10µl/l), resulted in the release of large amounts of zooxanthellae and coral tissue within 18-48 hours, with complete bleaching of hard corals occurring within 96 hours. What is more, bleaching reportedly occurred at a faster rate in corals subjected to higher temperature, suggesting, in the researchers' words, "synergistic effects with this variable." Based on these results and conservative estimates of global sunscreen use and potential sunscreen release in and around tropical reefs, Danovaro et al. further calculated that approximately 10% of the world's coral reefs are at risk of sunscreen-induced bleaching.

What it means

There can be no escaping the fact that where people interact with corals, either directly or indirectly, corals suffer, either directly or indirectly (by becoming, for example, more susceptible to the deleterious effects of other stresses, such as higher water temperatures). Consequently, it is only to be expected that with ever more people using sunscreen lotion coming into contact with the world's coral reefs, ever more damage to those corals will be detected as time progresses. In addition, much of the damage that climate alarmists currently attribute to global warming may well be more validly laid at the feet of any number of increasing human population/coral reef interactions.
Perhaps it's a lot easier to get people to cut down on the sunscreen than it is to control the sun.

06-10-08, 05:10 PM
Though I don't post here much, I really appreciate what you do, movielib. Keep it up.

06-10-08, 05:14 PM
It is true that amphibians have been declining. It's from fungal chytrids. But these processes have, of course, also been blamed on global warming as at least a big factor. Is it true?


The Downward Spiral of Global Amphibian Populations
Volume 11, Number 24: 11 June 2008

Lips et al. (2008) begin an analysis of the possible role of historical climate change in triggering disease outbreaks of chytridiomycosis -- an emerging infectious disease of amphibians caused by the fungal pathogen Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) -- with the statement that "amphibian populations are declining across the globe at an alarming rate, with over 43% of species in a state of decline." Noting that the role of Bd in these population declines "has been linked to interactions with climate change" via the climate-linked epidemic hypothesis (CLEH) of Pounds et al. (2006) and Bosch et al. (2007), they indicate they have some serious reservations about this idea, because, as they continue, "both field studies on amphibians (Briggs et al., 2005; Lips et al., 2006) and on fungal population genetics (Morehouse et al., 2003; Morgan et al., 2007) strongly suggest that Bd is a newly introduced invasive pathogen." Consequently, and "from an ethical standpoint," as they put it, they cite as the primary reason for their further study of the subject, the "need to understand, as quickly as possible, the global patterns and causes of amphibian declines to prevent further losses of biodiversity."

In pursuit of the basic knowledge required to achieve this important goal, the four researchers evaluated data pertaining to population declines of frogs of the genus Atelopus, as well as similar data from other amphibian species, in Lower Central America and Andean South America, based on their own work and that of others recorded in the scientific literature, seeking to determine if the documented population declines were more indicative of an emerging infectious disease or a climate-change-driven infectious disease.

In discussing their findings, Lips et al. (2008) say they reveal "a classical pattern of disease spread across native populations, at odds with the CLEH proposed by Pounds et al. (2006)," emphasizing that their "analyses and re-analyses of data related to the CLEH all fail to support that hypothesis." Quite to the contrary, they say their analyses "support a hypothesis that Bd is an introduced pathogen that spreads from its point of origin in a pattern typical of many emerging infectious diseases," reemphasizing that "the available data simply do not support the hypothesis that climate change has driven the spread of Bd in our study area."

Although the U.S. scientists make it clear that disease dynamics are indeed "affected by micro- and macro-climatic variables," and that "such synergistic effects likely act on Bd and amphibians," their work clearly demonstrates that the simplistic scenario represented by the CLEH -- which posits, in their words, that "outbreaks of chytridiomycosis are triggered by a shrinking thermal envelope" -- paints an unrealistic picture of the role of global climate change in the much more complicated setting of real-world biology, where many additional factors may play even greater roles in determining amphibian wellbeing. With Lips et al.'s demonstration of this fact, perhaps appropriate conservation groups will now be able to do a better job of preventing "further losses of biodiversity," which they opined in the introductory paragraph of their paper might possibly occur in response to a more realistic understanding of "global patterns and causes of amphibian declines."

Sherwood, Keith and Craig Idso

06-10-08, 05:27 PM
Though I don't post here much, I really appreciate what you do, movielib. Keep it up.


I won't stop, I'm on a mission from God. ;)

06-10-08, 05:42 PM

06-10-08, 06:08 PM
Compared to the May 2007 value of 0.199°C we find a 12 month ∆T is -.379°C.

But even more impressive is the change since the last big peak in global temperature in January 2007 at 0.594°C, giving a 16 month ∆T of -0.774°C which is equal in magnitude to the generally agreed upon “global warming signal” of the last 100 years.

http://wattsupwiththat.files.wordpress.com/2008/06/uah_may_08-520.pngLook, I'm not drinking the CAGW coolaide but when the skeptics pull out crap like this, it makes them look just as bad.

Wow! A 16 month delta of .774 conveniently from the local max and local min. If you can't see that they are cherry picking their stats then I can't help you. You can see something even more drastic back in '98-'99 on that graph, except as we all know temperatures continued trending up afterwards (until '02?). Just say it's the 2nd coldest may since '79 or whatever. Clouding the issue with crap doesn't benefit anyone.

06-10-08, 06:34 PM
The increased CO2 and supposed sharp warming which is supposedly caused by it and is supposed to wipe out species at the rate of a giant meteor strike seem to be doing just the opposite:


Those scientists cited in the article may be surprised but those of us who have been taking note of the beneficial effects from increased CO2 instead of only the supposed bad ones seen by the alarmists, are not surprised at all.

Carbon dioxide = the bottom of the food chain.

06-10-08, 06:36 PM
Look, I'm not drinking the CAGW coolaide but when the skeptics pull out crap like this, it makes them look just as bad.

Wow! A 16 month delta of .774 conveniently from the local max and local min. If you can't see that they are cherry picking their stats then I can't help you. You can see something even more drastic back in '98-'99 on that graph, except as we all know temperatures continued trending up afterwards (until '02?). Just say it's the 2nd coldest may since '79 or whatever. Clouding the issue with crap doesn't benefit anyone.
Citing only Jan. '07 to May '08 would absolutely be cherry picking. Just as citing 1997-98 with a delta of almost 1.000 would be (as you said).

However, in this case I think Anthony Watts is just pointing out the short, sharp fall (as alarmists always do when it goes the other way). If he were trying to pretend it was a real ongoing long term trend or if he were trying to mislead I don't see why he would include the whole graph.

I think skeptics sometimes emphasize a temperature drop just to counter the alarmists who try to give the impression that something that drastic is never going to happen in our ever-warming world (which for close to a decade now hasn't been). I think the very slight cooling trend over the last 7-8 years (and which is likely to continue for quite some time due to the quiet sun and the cooling ocean decadal oscillations) is far more impressive than one sharp drop over 16 months. Having read much of Watts' writings I have no doubt he agrees. I think you're reading much more into this than was intended.

06-10-08, 06:39 PM
There was a true weather-related disaster yesterday about 50 miles from where I live:



People wading in what remains of Lake Delton near the Tommy Bartlett Show, the location of water ski shows.

more pictures (http://www.madison.com/wsj/topstories/index.php?ntgalleryid=290293)

One of the most amazing things about this is that I haven't yet heard anyone blame it on global warming. I figure it's only a matter of time.

I've been to that ski show several times and I've ridden on the Ducks.

I'm sure no one ever thought this could happen. 700 million gallons of water drained out in about two hours, I've heard.

"So many of these people, almost all of them that we see, are so rich and they are so white, and this is going to raise lots of questions for people who are watching this story unfold."

06-10-08, 06:42 PM
Citing only Jan. '07 to May '08 would absolutely be cherry picking. Just as citing 1997-98 with a delta of almost 1.000 would be (as you said).

However, in this case I think Anthony Watts is just pointing out the short, sharp fall (as alarmists always do when it goes the other way). If he were trying to pretend it was a real ongoing long term trend or if he were trying to mislead I don't see why he would include the whole graph.You're probably correct. I just wish it could have been worded a little differently so as to not give any false impressions. It makes it much easier for the other side to dismiss you, unless you're careful about this sort of thing (see 25% of the news articles movielib posts :) ).

06-12-08, 04:28 PM
Global warming is kicking our ass again today, probably mother nature's way of bitch slapping you, movielib. :mad: :p

06-12-08, 06:01 PM
Global warming is kicking our ass again today, probably mother nature's way of bitch slapping you, movielib. :mad: :p
Damn global wetting.

06-12-08, 06:18 PM
Stark raving mad. ABC is now spelled N-O-S-T-R-A-D-A-M-U-S (or, a better analogy, E-H-R-L-I-C-H).


ABC Hypes Sci-Fi Future of Death, Doom and Fire
By Scott Whitlock | June 12, 2008 - 13:13 ET

In order to promote a new climate change special airing this fall, Thursday's "Good Morning America" hyped terrifying future predictions of "more floods, more droughts, more wildfires" and, bizarrely, invited viewers to somehow morph into prophets and "report back" about what life is like in the year 2100. Featuring a slate of global warming alarmists, reporter Bob Woodruff previewed "Earth 2100" and touted the show as "a countdown through the next century" that "shows what scientists say might very well happen if we do not change our current path." An online version of this story hyperventilated, "Are we living in the last century of our civilization?" [Audio available here]

However, the oddest concept of this upcoming special includes a interactive online game that Woodruff claimed "puts participants in the future and asks them to report back about what it is like to live in this future world." Certainly Dan Rather and the ethical machinations of other journalists have lowered the bar of journalism in recent years, but how does one "report" on life in the year 2100? Is ABC providing a time machine? Doesn't "report," in this instance, just mean "making stuff up?"

At one point, Woodruff played a few examples of these "reports." In one, a teenager laments, "It's June 8th, 2015. One carton of milk is $12.99."Another video features a second teenager who admits he's "scared [profanity bleeped] right now."

The scientist/talking heads featured in the piece weren't much more calm then the civilians. Featuring a cavalcade of alarmists that included James Hansen, Al Gore's science advisor and Heidi Cullen, the climate change expert for the Weather Channel, to name a few, the GMA segment preceded to terrify viewers with a apocalyptic future of death and destruction. (It should also be pointed out that ABC failed to identify any of these people and their names/associations were only discerned after matching up quotes from an article on GMA's website.)

Professor John Holdren of Harvard University darkly announced that the future would bring "more floods, more droughts, more wildfires." The segment featured movie-style footage of flames, rioting and general destruction. Added to this were unidentified "reporters" who scarily proclaimed such things as "Flames cover hundreds of square miles." Of course, these predictions were provided with no context and generally just seemed designed to induce panic.

At the end of this montage, even GMA news anchor Chris Cuomo seemed frightened. He asked Woodruff: "I think we're familiar with some of these issues, but, boy, 2015? That's seven years from now. Could it really be that bad?" (The special will look not just at the year 2100, but also the years and decades leading up to it.) Woodruff cited unnamed scientists who believe "if you connect the dots, you can actually see that we're approaching maybe even a perfect storm." Admitting the goal of this special, the journalist opined, "So, the idea now is to look at it, wake up about it and then try to do something to fix it."

The segment wrapped up with a discussion of the hypothetical future visions that the "Earth 2100" special will include. Before playing the aforementioned speculative examples, Woodruff called them "some remarkable interviews." He later referred to the guesses as "ideas." But, again, isn't this just making stuff up? Will the special include viewers who believe that, 100 years hence, the world will be run by super intelligent apes who lord over mute humans? (Perhaps that scenario is too familiar.)

If viewers are to use their imaginations and create scenarios, how about one where journalists don't use fear mongering to try and cripple the economy with leftist environmental policies?

NewsBusters readers can go here to submit their own frightening/hilarious scenarios.

A transcript of the June 12 segment, which aired at 8:34am, follows:

CHRIS CUOMO: Now, we will have a dramatic preview for you of an unprecedented ABC News event called "Earth 2100." We're asking you to help create a story that is yet to unfold: What our world will look like in 100 years if we don't save our troubled planet. Your reports will actually help form the backbone of a two-hour special airing this fall. ABC's Bob Woodruff will be the host. He joins us now. Pleasure, Bob.

BOB WOODRUFF: You too, Chris. You know, this show is a countdown through the next century and shows what scientists say might very well happen if we do not change our current path. As part of the show, today, we are launching an interactive web game which puts participants in the future and asks them to report back about what it is like to live in this future world. The first stop is the year 2015.

[NOTE: ABC provides no graphics or identification for any of the following individuals/activists featured. Identifications taken discerned from web article.]

UNIDENTIFIED MALE #1: The public is sleepwalking into the future. You know, sort of going through the motions of daily life and really not paying attention.

JAMES HANSEN (NASA/AL GORE SCIENCE ADVISOR): We can see what the prospects are and we can see that we could solve the problem but we're not doing it.

[Graphic: Welcome to 2015]

PETER GLEICK (SCIENTIST/PACIFIC INSTITUTE): In 2015, we've still failed to address the climate problem.

JOHN HOLDREN (PROFESSOR/HARVARD UNIVERSITY): We're going to see more floods, more droughts, more wildfires.

UNIDENTIFIED "REPORTER:" Flames cover hundreds of square miles.

UNIDENTIFIED VOICE: We expect more intense hurricanes.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE #5: Well, how warm is it going to get? How much will sea level rise? We don't know really know where the end is.

UNIDENTIFIED VOICE #2: Temperatures have hit dangerous levels.

UNIDENTIFIED VOICE #3: Agriculture production is dropping because temperatures are rising.

HEIDI CULLEN (WEATHER CHANNEL/CLIMATE CHANGE EXPERT): There's about one billion people who are malnourished. That number just continually grows.

UNIDENTIFIED VOICE #4: Prices of energy have gone through the roof.

UNIDENTIFIED VOICE #5: Political conflict has grown.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE #5: We've got more people, less and less resources. That's a recipe for disaster.

JAMES WOOLSEY (FORMER CIA DIRECTOR): We have got millions of neighbors to the south heading north because they don't have food and they don't have water.

UNIDENTIFIED "REPORTER:" Over a million illegals were apprehended at the border.

CULLEN: You got people moving into politically unstable territory and what would have been once an isolated event now becomes a global problem.

UNIDENTIFIED VOICE #6: If we continue on the business-as-usual trajectory, there will be a tipping point that we cannot overt. We will indeed drive the car over the cliff.

CUOMO: I think we're familiar with some of these issues, but, boy, 2015? That's seven years from now. Could it really be that bad?

WOODRUFF: It's very soon, you know. But all you have to do is look at the world today right today. You know, you've got gas prices going up. You got food prices going up. You've got extreme weather. The scientists have studied this for decades. They say if you connect the dots, you can actually see that we're approaching maybe even a perfect storm. Or you have got shrinking resources, population growth. Climate change. So, the idea now is to look at it, wake up about it and then try to do something to fix it.

CUOMO: And I love the way you're looking at it. Yes, you have your scientists and you have your reporters' mind and others, but you're getting people involved in a kind of a game. How does that work?

WOODRUFF: The game, if you check into Earth2100.tv. --That's our website that we've got. And what we're looking for is we want people not only just around the country, but also around the world, regular people to give us their ideas of what you can see around the world. The scientists have studied this for so long. This will also be, the scientist analysis will also be on Earth 2100.tv.

CUOMO: What do you do with their reports?

WOODRUFF: Well, the reports, we want people to come in from, you know, around the world. All of these ones that send these ideas will be posted on Earth2100.tv. We also have scientists, of course. But the best of these regular reports that come from people that are watching, we're going to put those on, all of this on our two-hour production that's going to happen in the fall. And we just want more of these people to watch. And we've gotten already some remarkable interviews from these people. And just take a quick look.

UNIDENTIFIED TEENAGER: It's June 8th, 2015. One carton of milk is $12.99.

SECOND UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Gas reached over $9 a gallon.

THIRD UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm scared [bleeped] right now, but I have to get this out.

WOODRUFF: So the producers actually work with those people that send in their ideas into the website. And then we're just hoping that the goal is ultimately get these ideas very soon.

CUOMO: Lovely. Bob Woodruff. Thank you very much. You can find out much more about how you can be part of this exciting and important show. You can go to Earth2100.tv. Earth2100.tv or you can go to ABCNews.com.

For more on "Earth 2100," check out a related story at the Business & Media Institute Web site.
I'm sure some sensible people will submit scenarios that are not full of fear-mongering nonsense. I'm also sure none of them will make it into the program.

There's not one shred of evidence or reason to believe any of this will happen. The phrase "You can't make this stuff up" was made up for this kind of stuff.

06-13-08, 07:49 AM

06-13-08, 08:20 AM
Doesn't "report," in this instance, just mean "making stuff up?"

Wow, just like "grownup" reporters.

06-13-08, 07:00 PM
Tree leaves do not behave as we thought they did:


Goldilocks tree leaves
By Susan Milius
June 11th, 2008

Tree leaves do a pretty good job of achieving temperatures that are just right for photosynthesis, even if it’s too hot or too cold where they live, a new study shows.

From roughly the top to the bottom of North America, across some 50 degrees of latitude, trees all do their photosynthesizing at leaf temperatures around 21.4° Celsius plus or minus 2.2 degrees, says physiological ecologist Brent Helliker of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. That conclusion was based on a broad survey of the ratios of two forms of oxygen that vary depending on the temperature and humidity of leaves. Those properties control evaporation and make a signature in the cellulose of the tree rings, Helliker and colleague Suzanna Richter report in an upcoming Nature.

Such temperature control undermines the assumption that the insides of leaves have the same temperature as the air, Helliker says. That’s an assumption underlying studies that check oxygen ratios in old tree tissue to reconstruct past climates, he says.

The tree-ring community is just starting to sort out what the finding means. “I, and I am sure my colleagues in isotope dendroclimatology, will welcome this paper because it improves our understanding of the complex relationship between climate and the stable isotope ratios in wood,” says Danny McCarroll of the University of Wales Swansea. However, he objects to Helliker’s claim that paleoclimatologists’ approaches have relied so heavily on whether leaf temperatures match those of the surrounding air.

Those paleoclimatology methods for using isotopes in tree rings to reconstruct climate have been validated by observations, says Jan Esper of the Swiss Federal Research Institute in Birmensdorf. “From this perspective, the findings by Helliker and Richter are indeed surprising, as I would have expected a closer association between leaf and surrounding air temperature,” he says.

Helliker says he has been bugged for years by the assumption that a tree leaf photosynthesized at whatever the local air temperature might be. Trees release water, and during hot times, that botanical sweat cools them down. And trees that grow in cold places tend to cluster their leaves. These tight formations can affect the rate at which leaves lose heat on cold days, just as fingers pressed together in mittens stay warmer than fingers separated by space in gloves.

Physiologists, of course, could measure the temperature on individual leaves, but measuring enough leaves to give a picture of the canopy has been difficult. Helliker estimates that scientists would need at least 140 leaves to get a valid reading for the temperature of photosynthesis of a single tree.

His colleague Richter, however, had collected tree ring data for another project, and Helliker realized it would be perfect to test his idea. Richter had not only recorded oxygen ratios in the tree rings, but had also collected data from nearby weather stations on relative humidity. Since she knew the humidity, the researchers could calculate what the leaf temperature must have been to produce particular ratios of oxygen isotopes. When the leaf is photosynthesizing, the sugars it produces include oxygen in the temperature-sensitive ratio. The cellulose in tree rings made from these sugars thus indicates the leaf temperature during photosynthesis.

“What I like about this paper is the fact that it highlights the need to account for actual life conditions,” says Christian Körner of the University of Basel in Switzerland.
Indeed it would be premature to say anything definitive as to what this may mean for tree ring as proxies for temperature which, for example, is the main proxy used by Michael Mann et al. in their infamous and discredited Hockey Stick temperature reconstruction. Tree rings have already been show to be very poor proxies and I don't see how this can make them anything but worse than already thought, Danny McCarroll's objections noted above notwithstanding. At the very least (if the study is upheld), the finding that the leaf temperatures do affect the tree rings means even further inaccuracies in Mann's studies if any incorrect assumptions about leaf temperatures had a part in any of the conclusions (and I don't see how they couldn't if the leaf temperatures affect the tree rings as this study suggests).

I think the dead Hockey Stick is even more dead.

06-13-08, 07:03 PM
Wow, just like "grownup" reporters.
Mainstream Media = MSM = Make-up Stuff Media.

OK, I tortured that out but that doesn't mean it's not true. :)

06-13-08, 07:13 PM
Another article following up Post #66:


Jun 13, 2008
Final Nail in Hockey Stick Coffin - Hot Climate or Cold, Tree Leaves Stay in Comfort Zone

Agence France-Presse

A new study that shows their internal temperature remains constant at 21.4deg could challenge the way trees are used to determine historical climate data. The internal temperature of leaves, whether in the tropics or a cold-clime forest, tends toward a nearly constant 21.4 degrees Celsius, reports a study released today. It had long been assumed that actively photosynthesising leaves - using energy from sunlight to convert carbon dioxide and water into sugar - are nearly as cold or hot as the air around them.

The new findings not only challenge long-held precepts in plant biology, but could upend climate models that use tree rings to infer or predict past and present temperature changes. For decades, scientists studying the impact of global warming have measured the oxygen isotope ratio in tree-rings to determine the air temperature and relative humidity of historical climates. Oxygen atoms within water molecules evaporate more or less quickly depending on the number of neutrons they carry, and the ratio between these differently weighted atoms in tree trunk rings has been used as a measure of year-to-year fluctuations in temperatures and rainfall.

“The assumption in all of these studies was that tree leaf temperatures were equal to ambient temperatures,” lead researcher Brent Helliker told AFP. “It turns out that they are not.” Helliker and University of Pennsylvania colleague Suzanna Richter turned those assumptions upside down in examining 39 tree species, across 50 degrees of latitude ranging from sub-tropical Columbia to boreal Canada. They compared current observed records of humidity and temperature against the isotope ratios in the trees, and found that tree leaves were internally cooler than surrounding air temperatures in warm climes, and warmer in cool climes. Even more startling was that in all cases the average temperature - over the course of a growing season - was about 21degC. “It is not surprising to think that a polar bear in northern Canada and a black bear in Florida have the same internal body temperature,” because both animals have internal thermostats to prevent overheating or freezing to death, he said. “But to think that a Canadian black spruce and a Caribbean Pine have the same average leaf temperature is quite astonishing,” he added.

Tree leaves keep cool through constant evaporation and reducing sun exposure through leaf angles or reflective qualities. Warmth is gained by decreasing evaporation and increasing the number of leaves per branch. All these tricks should be seen as evolutionary adaptations that help the trees attain a maximum of nutrients through optimal photosynthesis, Helliker said. The fact that part of this adaptation occurs at the level of entire forest canopies, and not just within individual leaves, is one reason direct measurements of tree temperatures have been so hard. The new findings, published in the British journal Nature, are bolstered by a recent study of a mixed species forest in Switzerland based on infrared thermal imaging. Measured across an entire growing season, the forest canopy temperatures were found to be 4degC to 5degC higher than the cool, ambient air in the Swiss Alps.

Tommy Ceez
06-13-08, 09:30 PM
Global Warming and the Price of a Gallon of Gas
by John Coleman

You may want to give credit where credit is due to Al Gore and his global warming campaign the next time you fill your car with gasoline, because there is a direct connection between Global Warming and four dollar a gallon gas. It is shocking, but true, to learn that the entire Global Warming frenzy is based on the environmentalist’s attack on fossil fuels, particularly gasoline. All this big time science, international meetings, thick research papers, dire threats for the future; all of it, comes down to their claim that the carbon dioxide in the exhaust from your car and in the smoke stacks from our power plants is destroying the climate of planet Earth. What an amazing fraud; what a scam.

The future of our civilization lies in the balance.

That’s the battle cry of the High Priest of Global Warming Al Gore and his fellow, agenda driven disciples as they predict a calamitous outcome from anthropogenic global warming. According to Mr. Gore the polar ice caps will collapse and melt and sea levels will rise 20 feet inundating the coastal cities making 100 million of us refugees. Vice President Gore tells us numerous Pacific islands will be totally submerged and uninhabitable. He tells us global warming will disrupt the circulation of the ocean waters, dramatically changing climates, throwing the world food supply into chaos. He tells us global warming will turn hurricanes into super storms, produce droughts, wipe out the polar bears and result in bleaching of coral reefs. He tells us tropical diseases will spread to mid latitudes and heat waves will kill tens of thousands. He preaches to us that we must change our lives and eliminate fossil fuels or face the dire consequences. The future of our civilization is in the balance.

With a preacher’s zeal, Mr. Gore sets out to strike terror into us and our children and make us feel we are all complicit in the potential demise of the planet.

Here is my rebuttal.

There is no significant man made global warming. There has not been any in the past, there is none now and there is no reason to fear any in the future. The climate of Earth is changing. It has always changed. But mankind’s activities have not overwhelmed or significantly modified the natural forces.

Through all history, Earth has shifted between two basic climate regimes: ice ages and what paleoclimatologists call “Interglacial periods”. For the past 10 thousand years the Earth has been in an interglacial period. That might well be called nature’s global warming because what happens during an interglacial period is the Earth warms up, the glaciers melt and life flourishes. Clearly from our point of view, an interglacial period is greatly preferred to the deadly rigors of an ice age. Mr. Gore and his crowd would have us believe that the activities of man have overwhelmed nature during this interglacial period and are producing an unprecedented, out of control warming.

Well, it is simply not happening. Worldwide there was a significant natural warming trend in the 1980’s and 1990’s as a Solar cycle peaked with lots of sunspots and solar flares. That ended in 1998 and now the Sun has gone quiet with fewer and fewer Sun spots, and the global temperatures have gone into decline. Earth has cooled for almost ten straight years. So, I ask Al Gore, where’s the global warming?

The cooling trend is so strong that recently the head of the United Nation’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change had to acknowledge it. He speculated that nature has temporarily overwhelmed mankind’s warming and it may be ten years or so before the warming returns. Oh, really. We are supposed to be in a panic about man-made global warming and the whole thing takes a ten year break because of the lack of Sun spots. If this weren’t so serious, it would be laughable.

Now allow me to talk a little about the science behind the global warming frenzy. I have dug through thousands of pages of research papers, including the voluminous documents published by the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. I have worked my way through complicated math and complex theories. Here’s the bottom line: the entire global warming scientific case is based on the increase in carbon dioxide in the atmosphere from the use of fossil fuels. They don’t have any other issue. Carbon Dioxide, that’s it.

Hello Al Gore; Hello UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Your science is flawed; your hypothesis is wrong; your data is manipulated. And, may I add, your scare tactics are deplorable. The Earth does not have a fever. Carbon dioxide does not cause significant global warming.

The focus on atmospheric carbon dioxide grew out a study by Roger Revelle who was an esteemed scientist at the Scripps Oceanographic Institute. He took his research with him when he moved to Harvard and allowed his students to help him process the data for his paper. One of those students was Al Gore. That is where Gore got caught up in this global warming frenzy. Revelle’s paper linked the increases in carbon dioxide, CO2, in the atmosphere with warming. It labeled CO2 as a greenhouse gas.

Charles Keeling, another researcher at the Scripps Oceanographic Institute, set up a system to make continuous CO2 measurements. His graph of these increases has now become known as the Keeling Curve. When Charles Keeling died in 2005, his son David, also at Scripps, took over the measurements. Here is what the Keeling curve shows: an increase in CO2 from 315 parts per million in 1958 to 385 parts per million today, an increase of 70 parts per million or about 20 percent.

All the computer models, all of the other findings, all of the other angles of study, all come back to and are based on CO2 as a significant greenhouse gas. It is not.

Here is the deal about CO2, carbon dioxide. It is a natural component of our atmosphere. It has been there since time began. It is absorbed and emitted by the oceans. It is used by every living plant to trigger photosynthesis. Nothing would be green without it. And we humans; we create it. Every time we breathe out, we emit carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. It is not a pollutant. It is not smog. It is a naturally occurring invisible gas.

Let me illustrate. I estimate that this square in front of my face contains 100,000 molecules of atmosphere. Of those 100,000 only 38 are CO2; 38 out of a hundred thousand. That makes it a trace component. Let me ask a key question: how can this tiny trace upset the entire balance of the climate of Earth? It can’t. That’s all there is to it; it can’t.

The UN IPCC has attracted billions of dollars for the research to try to make the case that CO2 is the culprit of run-away, man-made global warming. The scientists have come up with very complex creative theories and done elaborate calculations and run computer models they say prove those theories. They present us with a concept they call radiative forcing. The research organizations and scientists who are making a career out of this theory, keep cranking out the research papers. Then the IPCC puts on big conferences at exotic places, such as the recent conference in Bali. The scientists endorse each other’s papers, they are summarized and voted on, and viola, we are told global warming is going to kill us all unless we stop burning fossil fuels.

May I stop here for a few historical notes? First, the internal combustion engine and gasoline were awful polluters when they were first invented. And, both gasoline and automobile engines continued to leave a layer of smog behind right up through the 1960’s. Then science and engineering came to the environmental rescue. Better exhaust and ignition systems, catalytic converters, fuel injectors, better engineering throughout the engine and reformulated gasoline have all contributed to a huge reduction in the exhaust emissions from today’s cars. Their goal then was to only exhaust carbon dioxide and water vapor, two gases widely accepted as natural and totally harmless. Anyone old enough to remember the pall of smog that used to hang over all our cities knows how much improvement there has been. So the environmentalists, in their battle against fossil fuels and automobiles had a very good point forty years ago, but now they have to focus almost entirely on the once harmless carbon dioxide. And, that is the rub. Carbon dioxide is not an environmental problem; they just want you now to think it is.

Numerous independent research projects have been done about the greenhouse impact from increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide. These studies have proven to my total satisfaction that CO2 is not creating a major greenhouse effect and is not causing an increase in temperatures. By the way, before his death, Roger Revelle coauthored a paper cautioning that CO2 and its greenhouse effect did not warrant extreme countermeasures.

So now it has come down to an intense campaign, orchestrated by environmentalists claiming that the burning of fossil fuels dooms the planet to run-away global warming. Ladies and Gentlemen, that is a myth.

So how has the entire global warming frenzy with all its predictions of dire consequences, become so widely believed, accepted and regarded as a real threat to planet Earth? That is the most amazing part of the story.

To start with global warming has the backing of the United Nations, a major world force. Second, it has the backing of a former Vice President and very popular political figure. Third it has the endorsement of Hollywood, and that’s enough for millions. And, fourth, the environmentalists love global warming. It is their tool to combat fossil fuels. So with the environmentalists, the UN, Gore and Hollywood touting Global Warming and predictions of doom and gloom, the media has scrambled with excitement to climb aboard. After all the media loves a crisis. From YK2 to killer bees the media just loves to tell us our lives are threatened. And the media is biased toward liberal, so it’s pre-programmed to support Al Gore and UN. CBS, NBC, ABC, CNN, MSNBC, The New York Times, The LA Times, The Washington Post, the Associated Press and here in San Diego The Union Tribune are all constantly promoting the global warming crisis.

So who is going to go against all of that power? Not the politicians. So now the President of the United States, just about every Governor, most Senators and most Congress people, both of the major current candidates for President, most other elected officials on all levels of government are all riding the Al Gore Global Warming express. That is one crowded bus.

I suspect you haven’t heard it because the mass media did not report it, but I am not alone on the no man-made warming side of this issue. On May 20th, a list of the names of over thirty-one thousand scientists who refute global warming was released. Thirty-one thousand of which 9,000 are Ph.ds. Think about that. Thirty-one thousand. That dwarfs the supposed 2,500 scientists on the UN panel. In the past year, five hundred of scientists have issued public statements challenging global warming. A few more join the chorus every week. There are about 100 defectors from the UN IPCC. There was an International Conference of Climate Change Skeptics in New York in March of this year. One hundred of us gave presentations. Attendance was limited to six hundred people. Every seat was taken. There are a half dozen excellent internet sites that debunk global warming. And, thank goodness for KUSI and Michael McKinnon, its owner. He allows me to post my comments on global warming on the website KUSI.com. Following the publicity of my position form Fox News, Glen Beck on CNN, Rush Limbaugh and a host of other interviews, thousands of people come to the website and read my comments. I get hundreds of supportive emails from them. No I am not alone and the debate is not over.

In my remarks in New York I speculated that perhaps we should sue Al Gore for fraud because of his carbon credits trading scheme. That remark has caused a stir in the fringe media and on the internet. The concept is that if the media won’t give us a hearing and the other side will not debate us, perhaps we could use a Court of law to present our papers and our research and if the Judge is unbiased and understands science, we win. The media couldn’t ignore that. That idea has become the basis for legal research by notable attorneys and discussion among global warming debunkers, but it’s a long way from the Court room.

I am very serious about this issue. I think stamping out the global warming scam is vital to saving our wonderful way of life.

The battle against fossil fuels has controlled policy in this country for decades. It was the environmentalist’s prime force in blocking any drilling for oil in this country and the blocking the building of any new refineries, as well. So now the shortage they created has sent gasoline prices soaring. And, it has lead to the folly of ethanol, which is also partly behind the fuel price increases; that and our restricted oil policy. The ethanol folly is also creating a food crisis throughput the world – it is behind the food price rises for all the grains, for cereals, bread, everything that relies on corn or soy or wheat, including animals that are fed corn, most processed foods that use corn oil or soybean oil or corn syrup. Food shortages or high costs have led to food riots in some third world countries and made the cost of eating out or at home budget busting for many.

So now the global warming myth actually has lead to the chaos we are now enduring with energy and food prices. We pay for it every time we fill our gas tanks. Not only is it running up gasoline prices, it has changed government policy impacting our taxes, our utility bills and the entire focus of government funding. And, now the Congress is considering a cap and trade carbon credits policy. We the citizens will pay for that, too. It all ends up in our taxes and the price of goods and services.

So the Global warming frenzy is, indeed, threatening our civilization. Not because global warming is real; it is not. But because of the all the horrible side effects of the global warming scam.

I love this civilization. I want to do my part to protect it.

If Al Gore and his global warming scare dictates the future policy of our governments, the current economic downturn could indeed become a recession, drift into a depression and our modern civilization could fall into an abyss. And it would largely be a direct result of the global warming frenzy.

My mission, in what is left of a long and exciting lifetime, is to stamp out this Global Warming silliness and let all of us get on with enjoying our lives and loving our planet, Earth.


I know its bad form to post an article and not comment, but I would like to hear movielibs thoughts on this

06-13-08, 10:49 PM

I know its bad form to post an article and not comment, but I would like to hear movielibs thoughts on this
I think this is, although somewhat simplified (as it would have to be; climate is one of the most complex phenomena on our planet), a fairly good summary. I see a couple of quibbles: I wouldn't say ice ages and interglacials have been occurring over all history, at least not in the sense we know them recently (geologically speaking). It has been like this for perhaps a couple million years (a very small part of 4.5 billion). We have had very cold periods, probably including two or three snowball earths (much colder and longer than any of the recent ice ages) and very long periods of very warm weather. But that doesn't significantly impact any of Coleman's salient points.

On Al Gore it is not exactly fair to imply that Gore has made any of those particular predictions in an immediate time frame. He has been very unspecific as to when any of this could or would happen. But in a way that makes Gore's methods all the more odious. Gore gets to scaremonger to his heart's content and then, when called on it, protest that he didn't say "when." He wants to eat his cake (which is obvious from his portly figure) and have it too (so he can gaze upon it and admire his cleverness). His admirers are only too happy to allow him that.

I think Coleman generally gets it right (at a fairly simple and sketchy level). I can see some generalizations that could be refined but I assume he had limited space if he wanted anyone to read or listen to what he has to say. If anyone wants to bring up a specific point I will be happy to discuss it.

06-14-08, 07:20 PM
There was a true weather-related disaster yesterday about 50 miles from where I live:


One of the most amazing things about this is that I haven't yet heard anyone blame it on global warming. I figure it's only a matter of time.
Here we go:


Saturday, June 14, 2008
Environmentalists Try to Take Advantage of Natural Disaster - Blame Midwest Floods on Global Warming

By Joseph D’Aleo

In the latest in a series of predictable releases, an environmental group Clean Wisconsin today claimed (http://www.madison.com/tct/news/weather/291552) that the disastrous floods that ravaged southern Wisconsin this week are consistent with global warming predictions in the January 2007 Clean Wisconsin report. The report, “Global Warming Arrives in Wisconsin,” forecast that global warming would lead to increased instances of severe droughts, more intense floods and increased snowfall.

You see alarmist have adopted the can’t lose position that all extremes of weather - cold, warm, wet or dry is due to global warming. They had the snowiest winter on record in Madison, topping 100 inches for the first time ever.


Wisconsin had its 33[rd] coldest winter on record, nearby Iowa its 19th coldest in 114 years. The cool weather continued into the spring with the 22nd coldest spring on record in Wisconsin and 24th in Iowa.

The severe weather and heavy rainfall has been the result of rapid COOLING in the northern tier of the United States and Canada not global warming. The flooding exceeded the floods of 1993 when rapid cooling following the eruption of Pinatubo produced a similar kind of cooling with a strong suppressed jet stream that brought a steady stream of storms and flooding.

Rapid warming as took place in the 1930s leads to drought and record heat. The alarmist movement is reeling after the warming stopped in 1998 and cooling began in 2002, accelerating in the last year. Their claims have now morphed from warming to focusing on the extremes typical of La Nina and the colder decades.

Global warming, your all purpose disaster causer.

06-15-08, 09:07 AM
No bias here:


APNewsBreak: Companies get OK to annoy polar bears
By DINA CAPPIELLO – 23 hours ago

WASHINGTON (AP) — Less than a month after declaring polar bears a threatened species because of global warming, the Bush administration is giving oil companies permission to annoy and potentially harm them in the pursuit of oil and natural gas.

The Fish and Wildlife Service issued regulations this week providing legal protection to seven oil companies planning to search for oil and gas in the Chukchi Sea off the northwestern coast of Alaska if "small numbers" of polar bears or Pacific walruses are incidentally harmed by their activities over the next five years.

Environmentalists said the new regulations give oil companies a blank check to harass the polar bear.

About 2,000 of the 25,000 polar bears in the Arctic live in and around the Chukchi Sea, where the government in February auctioned off oil leases to ConocoPhillips Co., Shell Oil Co. and five other companies for $2.6 billion. Over objections from environmentalists and members of Congress, the sale occurred before the bear was classified as threatened in May.

Polar bears are naturally curious creatures and sensitive to changes in their environment. Vibrations, noises, unusual scents and the presence of industrial equipment can disrupt their quest for prey and their efforts to raise their young in snow dens.

However, the Fish and Wildlife Service said oil and gas exploration will have a negligible effect on the bears' population.

"The oil and gas industry in operating under the kind of rules they have operated under for 15 years has not been a threat to the species," H. Dale Hall, the Fish and Wildlife Service's director, told The Associated Press on Friday. "It was the ice melting and the habitat going away that was a threat to the species over everything else."

The agency made no secret that oil and gas operations would continue in polar bear territory when it announced May 14 that melting sea ice threatened the creature's survival. But Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne assured the public that the bear population would not be harmed.

"Polar bears are already protected under the Marine Mammal Protection Act, which has more stringent protections for polar bears than the Endangered Species Act does," Kempthorne said.

Environmentalists already suing the agency over its determination that the bear's threatened status cannot be used to regulate global warming gases said Kempthorne's earlier assurances were misleading.

"Now, three weeks later, Interior issues a rule under the act that we view as a blank check to harass the polar bear in the Chukchi Sea," said Brendan Cummings, oceans program director at the Center for Biological Diversity. He added that his group believes the new regulations are illegal.

Exploring in the Chukchi Sea's 29.7 million acres will require as many as five drill ships, one or two icebreakers, a barge, a tug and two helicopter flights per day, according to the government. Oil companies will also be making hundred of miles of ice roads and trails along the coastline.

"We are poorly equipped to address those risks and challenges," said Steven Amstrup, one of the foremost experts on polar bears and a scientist at the U.S. Geological Survey's Alaska Science Center. "To assess what the impacts are going to be, we should know more about the bears."

Last year, the Marine Mammal Oversight Commission, an independent government oversight agency, told the Fish and Wildlife Service it lacked the information to conclude that exploration will not affect the bear population.

The seven companies will be required to map out the locations of polar bear dens, train their employees about the bears' habits and take other measures to minimize clashes with them. In exchange, the companies are legally protected if their operations unintentionally harm the bears. Any bear deaths would still warrant an investigation and could result in penalty under the law.

"These rules are essentially an insurance policy," said Marilyn Crockett, executive director of the Alaska Oil and Gas Association, an industry group that in 2005 requested the new regulation. "They say if you conduct your operations in accordance to the requirement in this rule, you will not be held liable for the take of the bears."

Administration and industry officials said oil companies enjoyed similar status in the Chukchi Sea from 1991 to 1996 and in the Beaufort Sea since 1993 and there was no effect on polar bear populations.

There is no evidence of a polar bear being killed by oil and gas activities in Alaska since 1993, according to the Fish and Wildlife Service. Since 1960, when the hunt for oil and gas began in Alaska, only two fatalities of polar bears have been linked to oil and gas activities in the state, the service said.
Polar bears are not endangered and shouldn't have been given "threatened" status in the first place. it happened only because the Bush administration lacked the guts to take shit from the environmentalists by refusing to grant the status. Now, predictably, since enviros are never satisfied, the administration is taking shit anyway. Why don't those dealing with enviros ever learn?

But here we have a major news organization, one of the largest and most powerful in the world, with a headline and lead paragraph saying the administration has given oil companies the permission to "annoy," potentially "harm" and presumably kill polar bears.

Never mind that under pretty much these same rules hardly any bears have ever been harmed. And pardon me, but if a few are harmed (and there is not a shred of evidence that significant numbers that would make any difference would ever be harmed) in the process of improving human lives by finding more oil, who the fuck cares? With humans we are and should be concerned with every individual. With animals, we can be concerned about species as a whole but an individual bear or two are hardly any big deal to a rational person.

The AP should be ashamed of themselves for this blatant bias and advocacy.

06-15-08, 05:20 PM
potentially "harm"
At least they said "potentially." :sarcasm:

06-16-08, 09:36 AM
There's never a shortage of crises for the enviros. I'll bet you didn't know your shower curtain could kill you:


That 'new shower curtain smell' gives off toxic chemicals, study finds
An environmental organization finds high concentrations of dangerous chemicals in shower curtains sold at major stores.
By Tami Abdollah, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
June 13, 2008

Vinyl shower curtains sold at major retailers across the country emit toxic chemicals that have been linked to serious health problems, according to a report released Thursday by a national environmental organization.

The curtains contained high concentrations of chemicals that are linked to liver damage as well as damage to the central nervous, respiratory and reproductive systems, said researchers for the Virginia-based Center for Health, Environment & Justice.

The organization commissioned the study about two years ago to determine what caused that "new shower curtain smell" familiar to many consumers.

"This smell can make you feel sick, give you a headache, make you feel nauseous or [cause] other health effects," said Michael Schade, a coauthor of the report.

Researchers tested the chemical composition of five unopened polyvinyl chloride, or PVC, plastic shower curtains bought from Bed Bath & Beyond, Kmart, Sears, Target and Wal-Mart. One of the curtains was then tested to determine the chemicals it released into the air.

The study found that PVC shower curtains contained high concentrations of phthalates, which have been linked to reproductive effects, and varying concentrations of organotins, which are compounds based on tin and hydrocarbons. One of the curtains tested released measurable quantities of as many as 108 volatile organic compounds into the air, some of which persisted for nearly a month.

Seven of these chemicals -- toluene, ethylbenzene, phenol, methyl isobutyl ketone, xylene, acetophenone and cumene -- have been identified by the Environmental Protection Agency as hazardous air pollutants, said Stephen Lester, the center's science director and a coauthor of the report.

Potential health effects include developmental damage and harm to the liver and the central nervous, respiratory and reproductive systems, according to the report.

Phthalates and organotins, which are not chemically bonded to the shower curtain, are often added to soften or otherwise enhance the curtain. These additives evaporate or cling to household dust more easily than the chemicals in the curtains themselves, Lester said. Volatile organic compounds also evaporate more easily than the less harmful chemicals, he said.

Vinyl chloride, which is a major building block of PVC, is a known human carcinogen that causes liver cancer, Lester said.

"PVC is just bad from cradle to cradle," said Martha Dina Argüello, executive director of the Los Angeles chapter of Physicians for Social Responsibility. "It's a mess when you create, it's a mess when you get rid of it, and it's off-gassing when you're using it."

Representatives of Target and Sears Holding Co., the parent company of Kmart, said their companies were phasing out curtains that contain PVC. Target said about 90% of the store's "owned brand" shower curtains offered this spring were made of materials other than PVC. Officials from the other companies were not immediately available for comment Thursday.

The report said that Bed Bath & Beyond had increased the number of PVC-free shower curtains it offered by selling those made of ethylene vinyl acetate and fabrics, but that Wal-Mart did not respond to the organization's faxes or letters requesting the retailer's PVC policy.

The American Chemistry Council issued a statement Thursday saying there was "no reliable evidence" that phthalates were harmful or linked to serious health problems, or that they were tied to the new shower curtain smell.

Argüello said studies were still being done on the effects of phthalates and other chemicals on people.

Little information on toxicity is available for 86 of the 108 chemicals detected in the curtains, Lester said.

The EPA has tested vinyl shower curtains and in 2002 said it had found that many of the same chemicals listed in the center's report.

Lester said the test drew attention to the lack of government regulations or health-based guidelines governing indoor air pollutants.

"The EPA does not regulate indoor air, period," said Barbara Spark, the indoor air program coordinator for the EPA's Pacific Southwest region. "We have not been given that authority by the Congress."

The Center for Health, Environment & Justice sent a letter to 19 major retailers Thursday informing them of the new report and encouraging them to stop selling PVC products.

"Most companies aren't aware of some of the risks these products entail," Lester said. "Once they're informed of this, they're in many cases ready to make changes and purchase alternative products."
But wait, not so fast. ABC which normally is all too happy to jump all over any environmental panic uncharacteristically decided to do some real journalistic research:


Studies Gone Wild: Death by Shower Curtain?
Experts Debate Study Suggesting Hazards of Shower Curtains
June 12, 2008

Could your shower curtain be harming your health?

An environmental group claims in a new study of vinyl shower curtains that some of them may release into the air toxic chemicals which could cause asthma, eye irritation or even cancer.

"We have a clear-cut case that these products release elevated levels of harmful chemicals," said report co-author Mike Schade, PVC campaign coordinator for the Center for Health, Environment and Justice. "Our research builds on a growing body of evidence that shows that the government fails to protect us from the growing number of toxic chemicals in products."

But some health experts are paying scant attention to those behind the curtain study. And perhaps with good reason.

Skeptics pointed out what they call a glaring error in the study's methodology. The group tested a total of five shower curtains, of which only one shower curtain — not one brand; one curtain — was subjected to complete testing for chemicals in its composition, as well as those it released into the air — a phenomenon known as "off-gassing."

Further testing was not performed "to avoid potential instrument damage," according to the report.

The study found the one curtain which was tested for off-gassing may have released, over the course of the first few hours after it was opened, chemicals that could be toxic if swallowed or inhaled only in quantities thousands of times greater than those found.

Critics said that the testing was not verified by an independent lab and didn't account for real-world conditions such as temperature or humidity in a shower stall.

The study also included estimated results for some of the chemical amounts it reported, and most of the off-gassed chemicals found initially were not detectable after a few days.

In short, it is a piece of shower curtain research that some experts said just doesn't hold water.

"It's a great example of how quickly a sound bite can become dangerous and contagious," said ABC News medical contributor Dr. Marie Savard.

"The idea that people should be tossing out their shower curtains based on a study that more or less focuses on a single shower curtain is absurd. This is scare science at its best, or worst, depending on how you look at it."

Also sounding off against the study was the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CSPC), the agency charged with protecting the public from dangers in more than 15,000 types of consumer products under its jurisdiction.

"The CSPC never just discounts or discredits information," said CSPC spokesperson Julie Vallese. "If it is a topic that the agency should have an interest in, we are always willing to take a look at the science."

But in this case, she noted, "Our toxicological experts took a look at the report and have many, many concerns with the credibility of the science involved."

Vallese cited the methodology, as well as the peer review, which comprised a selection of experts she criticized as non-objective.

"As for the report overall — based on the sound science and information that the CSPC has — the claims that are being made on shower curtains are 'phantasmagorical,'" Vallese said, adding that she doesn't get to use such a word very often in her work as a spokesperson.

Schade stood behind the report, noting that his team found that the shower curtains released 108 different volatile organic compounds, or VOCs. He maintained that many of these compounds have been linked with developmental problems in children, cancer and other health effects.

But he conceded that whether the levels of these VOCs emitted by the curtains could be directly linked to health effects was difficult to determine. "It's really hard to say that, because there are currently no standards for indoor air quality."

He cited that one class of chemicals — phthalates — were of particular concern due to their purported effects on babies in the womb.

"All five curtains we tested contained phthalates at pretty high concentrations," he said.

Phthalates, however, are present in nearly all flexible plastics. And the ubiquitous ingredient, unlike VOCs, is not released into the air by products containing it — suggesting that the primary way one would absorb it from their shower curtain would be through eating it.

Still, Shanna Swan, director of the Center for Reproductive Epidemiology at the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry, said that the idea that the researchers detected so many compounds warrants further study.

"I was surprised and alarmed by the large number of volatile organic compounds measured," she said. "I think it's a very strong message that we are exposed to mixtures of chemicals."

But she agreed that the findings, on their own, were far too weak to be considered a basis for an all-out ban on vinyl shower curtains.

"I don't think that this is a case for panic or immediately ripping these things out of houses," she said. "I don't think any regulations would be made on a single study."

And other epidemiologists cited the need for evidence of real-world effects in any study.

"I would think that they would have data showing how health outcomes have changed [due to exposure to shower curtains]," said Dr. Tim Byers, professor of epidemiology and community health at the University of Colorado School of Medicine. "That is always the question; is this a laboratory phenomenon that is not related to 'in use' conditions?"

Vallese said that unless a stronger link can be proven, consumers can probably put their minds at ease the next time they purchase a new shower curtain.

"In our busy lives, there are so many things that people should be or could be focused on to improve their health and safety," Vallese said. "Their shower curtains are not one of them.

"I think there are a lot of people out there sounding the false alarm."
This is all too typical of environmental organizations. Shoddy, seemingly deliberately misleading research and ignoring the adage that "the dose makes the poison."

As for ABC, maybe a few of those yahoos are beginning to listen a little to their colleague John Stossel.

06-16-08, 10:07 AM
Following up on Post #66, Junkscience comments:

http://www.junkscience.com/ (this will move off the main page tomorrow)

If trees are capable of regulating leaf temperature then the basic assumption of those using "treemometers" is false and dendro-based temperature histories complete nonsense. They are, as climate realists have long pointed out, mere markers of growing conditions, recording the mix of the trees' requirements from optimal moisture conditions, nutrient status, competition, shading and so on with no realistic expectation of distinguishing between say hot, dry and cold, wet conditions as both result in non-optimal growth. Doubtless advocacy sites like realklimate will continue their absurd dogmatic defense of Mannian hockey sticks but their last slender twig of hope for justification just got thrown on the bonfire of failed hypotheses.
Junkscience reposted this graph from a peer reviewed study by Craig Loehle last year (I posted it here at the time) which reconstructed temperatures leaving out the unreliable tree ring data. He was ridiculed by the Hockey Stick people at realclimate for doing so.


The Hockey Stick isn't just merely dead now, it's really most sincerely dead.

06-16-08, 05:33 PM
Just like if you apply for a science grant you increase your chances by including a global warming angle, if you write a book wailing about CAGW, you have a good chance of winning science writing awards.


From Times Online
June 16, 2008
Global warming book wins science prize
Mark Henderson, Science Editor

An investigation of how global warming could change the planet over the next century has won the world’s leading award for science writing.

Six Degrees: Our Future on a Hotter Planet, by the journalist Mark Lynas, was named as this year’s winner of the £10,000 Royal Society Science Books Prize.

Mr Lynas’s book describes what science suggests could happen with each degree Celsius by which global temperatures could warm by 2100, to highlight the urgency of tackling climate change now.

He was a 6/1 outsider to win, and saw off strong competition from the two favourites, the geneticists Craig Venter and Steve Jones.

Dr Venter, who led the private effort to sequence the human genome, was shortlisted for his autobiography, A Life Decoded. Professor Jones, a previous winner, was shortlisted for Coral: A Pessimist in Paradise, which uses the marine organism to assess the past and future of the planet.

Professor Jonathan Ashmore, of University College, London, who chaired the judging panel, said: “Lynas gives us a compelling and gripping view of how climate change could affect our world. It presents a series of scientifically plausible, worst case scenarios without tipping into hysteria.

“Six degrees is not just a great read, written in an original way, but also provides a good overview of the latest science on this highly topical issue. This is a book that will stimulate debate and that will, Lynas hopes, move us to action in the hope that this is a disaster movie that never happens. Everyone should read this book.”

Past winners of the prestigious award have included Professor Stephen Hawking, Jared Diamond (twice), Bill Bryson and Stephen Jay Gould.

The Junior Prize for children’s books, also worth £10,000, was awarded to Rebecca Gilpin, Leonie Pratt and their illustrator Josephine Thompson, for Big Book of Science Things to Make and Do.

It was chosen from a shortlist of six by a judging panel of almost 1,200 children from more than 120 schools and youth groups in the UK. Children from Uganda, Tanzania, Cameroon, Thailand and Malaysia also took part in the judging process.

This year’s awards were supported by the Beecroft Trust, but the Royal Society is still seeking a full sponsor for the awards, which were backed by the pharmaceutical company Aventis until 2006.
This was also made into a National geographic special TV show.

Now I admit I have not read this book nor seen the program. But I do not feel compelled to delve into scenarios (presented as actual science) that have about as little chance of coming true as M. Night Shyamalan's The Happening or Roland Emmerich's The Day After Tomorrow (I have no problem with them as science fiction). Even a 1ºC increase is unlikely in the next century, let alone a 6ºC increase. That garbage such as this wins prizes is not any more surprising than Al Gore's Nobel Peace Prize. It sounds like Mark Lynas exaggerates and fantasizes as much as Gore.

Of course there have been many recent books written by top scientists that do not agree with CAGW, books by Fred Singer, Patrick Michaels, Henrik Svensmark and Roy Spencer come to mind. Of course they didn't have a snowball earth's chance in hell to win this award or even be considered.

The book's calm, rational cover:


06-16-08, 07:35 PM
From my former hometown's crappy newspaper...http://www.themonroetimes.com/main.asp?SectionID=6&SubSectionID=60&ArticleID=4066

It costs a lot to conserve

Flooding here on the East Branch of the Pecatonica may set a record I've been told - this on the heels of a similar blockbuster climate event just last month. What more evidence do we need to heed the warnings of the global warming enthusiasts who have breathlessly predicted such weather catastrophes?

More severe weather events: floods, drought, sea levels rising, higher temperatures, tornadoes, hurricanes, impending disaster with only a 10-year (now down to 7 or 8) window of opportunity to buck the trend.

It's a struggle for me to automatically make this connection without at least looking at other possible reasons. Would all the La Nina fans please stand up?

And never mind the inconsistencies these "holy rollers" dismiss with self-righteous contempt. I attended a woodland stewardship workshop in Madison a few months back where the first two speakers, both scientists, addressed global warming issues as they relate to Wisconsin's forests.

Based on some mysterious computer models, the first determined that Wisconsin would become warmer and drier in the future. Not being a scientist, I'm willing to listen. But I wish he would have gotten together beforehand with the very next speaker whose computer modeling showed Wisconsin getting warmer and wetter!

When I asked about the discrepancy, I got a look similar to that if my lefty professor at the University of Maryland back in the 70's when I questioned his conclusion that America's wanton waste of natural resources would destroy all of our forests within 10 years (standard timeline for every environmental catastrophe, it seems).

After a brief and disdainful pause, he responds: "It's very complicated. Sometimes it will be wetter, sometimes drier depending on weather patterns."

Well, so much for long-term trends.

According to an "Outdoor Advisory" I received recently from the National Wildlife Federation, the U.S. Senate is now debating the Climate Security Act that would curb global warming pollution and put America on "the path toward a new energy future."

In addition to the billions devoted to the fight against global warming, the bill would make an extraordinary investment in wildlife conservation - to the tune of $137 billion over the life of the proposal.

The NWF missive maintains the coins would help offset the effects of invasive species, increased wildfires, rising ocean levels, extreme drought and decreased snow pact caused by global warming. Among the targets for this endeavor is the development of "survival strategies for wildlife populations."

As a conservationist, I'm all for protecting our natural resources, especially the wild creatures that make our daily lives so fascinating. And, I realize that some of the organizations I hang out with stand to profit enormously from this largesse.

But I must admit some reservations about the wisdom of trying to teach bears and bunnies how to survive during a flood. Is it possible that many of the 200 or more organizations that wrote letters in favor of the bill are riding the coattails of a social and political phenomenon that has reached a level of fervor not unlike a religious crusade?

Legions of non-profit, so-called non-partisan groups, are packing their fund-raising literature with fever-pitched warnings about the effects of climate change. A healthy contribution now will help them fight for solutions, they suggest, which typically include lobbying the state and federal legislators for more restrictive regulations and filing lawsuits against government and business entities.

These appeals, too, are rife with inconsistencies. One such appeal included the highly popular prediction that great portions of our state will soon be under water. However, a photo right next to the same passage shows decreased water levels on the Great Lakes. Very complicated, indeed.

Fossil fuels are to blame for all these problems, they argue. In response, they have fought tooth and nail against the exploration and development of additional sources of energy, leaving us with $4 gas and dependence on foreign oil.

Nuclear power plants are out, as are coal-based facilities. The eastern half of the Gulf of Mexico and the Alaskan National Wildlife Refuge are off limits, even though less than one percent of ANWR has even the slightest chance of environmental degradation.

Even the most carbon-neutral alternatives, such as wind farms, have met with stiff opposition.

We all agree that conserving and protecting our resources is a high priority - going green as they say. However, let's be prudent about how we spend taxpayer dollars in this effort.

Perhaps we should all take time to come up for air, which, I note, is really nice and fresh this morning. Think I'll take a walk in the woods and enjoy the magnificent greenery as it absorbs all that nasty carbon dioxide.

06-17-08, 06:51 AM
As with elephants, private property rights are saving the rhinos:


He's black, and he's back! Private enterprise saves southern Africa's rhino from extinction

By Amol Rajan and Mike McCarthy

Tuesday, 17 June 2008

A pioneering scheme which allows private landlords to own and breed wild rhinoceroses has succeeded in bringing one of Africa's most majestic animals back from the brink of extinction, conservations will announce today.

In 1960, an estimated 100,000 southern black rhinos roamed the plains of southern Africa. Poaching and the destruction of the animals' natural habitat cut their number to 2,410 in 1995.

The decline has been reversed: the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) will announce this morning that more than 4,000 southern black rhinos can be found in Zimbabwe, South Africa, Namibia, and Kenya, a landmark signifying stability.

Numbers of southern whites have also increased, from 14,540 in 2005 to 17,480 at the end of last year.

"Effective law enforcement has become much easier now that the animals are largely privately owned," said Dr Richard Emslie, a scientific officer with responsibility for rhinos at the IUCN.

"We have been able to bring local communities into the conservation programmes. There are increasingly strong economic incentives attached to looking after rhinos rather than simply poaching: from eco-tourism or selling them on for a profit. So many owners are keeping them secure. The private sector has been key to helping our work."

As a result of poaching for their horns, the news is dismal for Africa's two northern species of rhino, however. Only four northern white rhinos remained when they were last seen in August 2006, all of them in Garamba National Park in the Democratic Republic of Congo, down from 30 in three years. That quartet has not since been sighted, leaving scientists concerned that they have been killed. The northern black rhino, which last bred successfully in Cameroon two years ago, is now extinct.

Several new rhino populations have been founded elsewhere in southern Africa. Hundreds of rhinos, both black and white, have been transferred to North Luangwa National Park in Zambia, for example, where they have bred successfully in the hundreds. The Kenyan Wildlife Service, which is responsible for managing Kenya's national parks, has run a programme with similar success.

Jean-Christophe Viè, the deputy head of the IUCN species programme, said these projects have restored conservationists' faith in the herbivore's future. "As long as you clearly identify the threat and combat it, conservation programmes are capable of being highly effective. From preservation of habitat to the development of rhino-centred tourism and clamping down on poaching, we know where the threats to rhinos come from. Encouraging private ownership has helped us counter those threats."

The only southern African country in which the rhino population has languished is Zimbabwe, where economic turmoil wrought by Robert Mugabe's government has made law enforcement almost impossible. The threat from poaching remains: the World Wildlife Fund attributes two-thirds of rhino fatalities in Zimbabwe to hunting, though only an estimated 8 per cent of rhino horns are recovered.

Across Africa as a whole, law enforcement agencies claim to be recovering an increasing proportion of the poached horns. In 2002-05, the last period for which there are reliable figures, an estimated 42 per cent of rhino horns were recovered by agencies.

A pair of horns can sell for up to $50,000 (£25,500). Demand remains high from China, where they are used in medicines, and Yemen, where they are used to make dagger handles. Contrary to popular belief, there is no evidence that the horns are an effective aphrodisiac. They are made of keratin, the protein that makes up human hair and fingernails.
Note that praise for the private property approach is from the IUCN, a very strong environmental organization. They are a little difficult to figure out. They maintain the highly respected "Red List" of threatened species which shows year after year that documented species extinction is extremely rare but paradoxically are always wailing that many species which are doing fine (including the polar bear) are "threatened." But it's great to see them acknowledge the power of private property rights. Many enviro organizations could learn some things from them.

Presumably, the northern situation may be so much worse because there is no mention of private ownership for them. Also, I suspect the article is wrong (although I'm not certain) in calling the northern and southern animals "species." I suspect, like the three subspecies of spotted owls, that the northern and southern varieties of rhinos are subspecies and there are no species extinctions involved.

It's also nice to see this article in The Independent, a newspaper that is normally in the hip pocket of the enviros, few of whom are enamored of private property rights.

06-17-08, 06:14 PM
Remember last year when Al Gore was hit by a report from a small conservative Tennessee think tank that he used more energy in a month than the average American used in a year? At first it was met by many who said, it can't be true, the "right wing" group has an ax to grind and they made it up. Then the group showed Gore's energy bills (they're public record) which backed up their story. Gore never disputed it but scrambled to recover by telling us all about how he was taking steps to "green" his house with solar panels and CFLs and all that other "planet saving" stuff. He claimed he had started this before the report but I'm not sure if he ever established that. Anyway, it's a year later so let's see how the globe's number one alarmist has done.


Gore-ging on Energy, 1 Year Later Gore’s Home Energy Use Climbs 10%

Posted on June 17, 2008
-By Warner Todd Huston

In February of 2007 a small group named the Tennessee Center for Policy Research published an interesting little story that made Al Gore, the king of global warming alarmism, look a tad foolish. The report that TCPR sent out showed that Al Gore’s own home was an energy hog. The TCPR report revealed that Al Gore’s Tennessee mansion used more energy each month than the average American household uses in an entire year. In a response to this report, Gore claimed that he was diligently working to make his home more green, but now it looks like Gore is being gored again because a year down the line his energy use hasn’t gone down. It hasn’t even stayed level. It actually increased by 10%. How will the media handle this bloated increase despite Gore’s claims of trying to improve?

In 2007, to a sensational reception the TCPR noted that the Gore family burned through energy at an amazing rate saying, “Last August alone, Gore burned through 22,619 kWh — guzzling more than twice the electricity in one month than an average American family uses in an entire year. As a result of his energy consumption, Gore’s average monthly electric bill topped $1,359.”

Not long after, Gore answered his critics on the website of Think Progress, an extreme website run by the Center for American Progress and funded by left-winger George Soros.

Vice President Gore’s office told ThinkProgress:

1) Gore’s family has taken numerous steps to reduce the carbon footprint of their private residence, including signing up for 100 percent green power through Green Power Switch, installing solar panels, and using compact fluorescent bulbs and other energy saving technology.

2) Gore has had a consistent position of purchasing carbon offsets to offset the family’s carbon footprint — a concept the right-wing fails to understand. Gore’s office explains:

What Mr. Gore has asked is that every family calculate their carbon footprint and try to reduce it as much as possible. Once they have done so, he then advocates that they purchase offsets, as the Gore’s do, to bring their footprint down to zero.
The most telling aspect of the 2007 report about Gore’s energy use is that he never disputed the facts. He admitted that he used that much energy, but claimed that he was trying to bring that usage down.

Well, we have waited a year to see the evidence of the Gore family’s efforts to bring that carbon footprint down to zero. And, with a follow up report, the TCPR decided to look into Al Gore’s usage of energy to see how well he did in improving his high energy use.

Unfortunately for the king of global warming, he didn’t do so well.

The new report shows Gore actually increased his energy use despite all the supposed efforts to make that ol’ carbon footprint equal “zero.”

In the year since Al Gore took steps to make his home more energy-efficient, the former Vice President’s home energy use surged more than 10%, according to the Tennessee Center for Policy Research.

In the past year, Gore’s home burned through 213,210 kilowatt-hours (kWh) of electricity, enough to power 232 average American households for a month.

Since taking steps to make his home more environmentally-friendly last June, Gore devours an average of 17,768 kWh per month –1,638 kWh more energy per month than before the renovations – at a cost of $16,533. By comparison, the average American household consumes 11,040 kWh in an entire year, according to the Energy Information Administration.

So, from the man telling you to reverse your standard of living to the dark ages, the Gore household continues to gobble up more and more energy every month than you would in a year.

As TCPR says, actions speak louder than words. I’d dare say with all the hot air emanating from the expanding girth of the former VP about global warming, with all the many private jet flights across the world, and with his constant scolding of the rest of us to stop using so much energy, this news once again makes Gore look the hypocrite.

Last time this news was a Drudge bombshell. The MSM reluctantly picked up on it after it became the talk of the blogs and talk radio. Will this newest report revealing Gore’s continued hypocrisy also become big news, even if only briefly?

I guess, we’ll see.
So I guess Al is buying 10% more "carbon offsets" from his own company and planting 10% more trees (well, of course "he" isn't, he would be having some much less important person doing it).

Just think how much more energy he'd use if he were ever actually home instead of gallivanting all over the world in those private jets (to be fair, he demands that the limos transporting him on land be hybrids) for those $100,000-$200,000 speaking engagements. I think he must always forget to turn off the lights and he must leave his TV on standby. -ohbfrank-

But in my never ending quest to give Gore every benefit of the doubt, I must admit that last winter was much colder than it has been in years. So that could account for some of his increased energy use. But then, I don't think he'll be using that as an excuse. :lol:

06-17-08, 08:36 PM
As with elephants, private property rights are saving the rhinos:


Note that praise for the private property approach is from the IUCN, a very strong environmental organization. They are a little difficult to figure out. They maintain the highly respected "Red List" of threatened species which shows year after year that documented species extinction is extremely rare but paradoxically are always wailing that many species which are doing fine (including the polar bear) are "threatened." But it's great to see them acknowledge the power of private property rights. Many enviro organizations could learn some things from them.


06-17-08, 08:38 PM
Remember last year when Al Gore was hit by a report from a small conservative Tennessee think tank that he used more energy in a month than the average American used in a year? At first it was met by many who said, it can't be true, the "right wing" group has an ax to grind and they made it up. Then the group showed Gore's energy bills (they're public record) which backed up their story. Gore never disputed it but scrambled to recover by telling us all about how he was taking steps to "green" his house with solar panels and CFLs and all that other "planet saving" stuff. He claimed he had started this before the report but I'm not sure if he ever established that. Anyway, it's a year later so let's see how the globe's number one alarmist has done.


So I guess Al is buying 10% more "carbon offsets" from his own company and planting 10% more trees (well, of course "he" isn't, he would be having some much less important person doing it).

Just think how much more energy he'd use if he were ever actually home instead of gallivanting all over the world in those private jets (to be fair, he demands that the limos transporting him on land be hybrids) for those $100,000-$200,000 speaking engagements. I think he must always forget to turn off the lights and he must leave his TV on standby. -ohbfrank-

But in my never ending quest to give Gore every benefit of the doubt, I must admit that last winter was much colder than it has been in years. So that could account for some of his increased energy use. But then, I don't think he'll be using that as an excuse. :lol:

I doubt he uses electric heat, so the colder winder probably wasn't why he used 10% more electricity.

06-17-08, 09:28 PM
I doubt he uses electric heat, so the colder winder probably wasn't why he used 10% more electricity.
Yeah, I just wanted to get in another lick. But I wonder what he uses in natural gas or whatever. While he's not going to need the heat we need in Wisconsin, Tennessee is still not the tropics. And then there's the water heater...

I tend to blur the electricity and gas payment together because we get one bill from the same company for both.

06-18-08, 10:23 AM
More on the "science" book awarded a prize the other day by the once great Royal Society of Great Britain:


Tuesday, June 17, 2008
The Royal Society: From Science to Fiction

Eco-activist Mark Lynas, has won the Royal Society's prize for popular science writing, for his book, Six Degrees: Our Future on a Hotter Planet.

Except that it isn't science, it's fiction. Science fiction; it takes a vaguely plausible scientific possibility, extrapolates it, and makes it the situation in which some form of drama plays out. For every one degree rise in temperature, Lynas considers what might happen to life on Earth.

Professor Jonathan Ashmore, Chair of the Judges said: “Lynas gives us a compelling and gripping view of how climate change could affect our world. It presents a series of scientifically plausible, worst case scenarios without tipping into hysteria. Six degrees is not just a great read, written in an original way, but also provides a good overview of the latest science on this highly topical issue. This is a book that will stimulate debate and that will, Lynas hopes, move us to action in the hope that this is a disaster movie that never happens. Everyone should read this book.”
'Without tipping into hysteria'? Here are two versions of the front cover of the book,


The image on the left, like all clichéd science fiction, helps us to suspend disbelief by showing us an iconic landmark - Big Ben - ravaged by whatever the threat is supposed to be.

This is exactly what happened in the other global warming fantasy, The Day After Tomorrow (left). On the Right, we can see the Whitehouse being smashed by aliens. This kind image is used to inform us that the threat is to the order of the world. Our values, laws, institutions, organisations, and security are all threatened by whatever it is the science-fictionalist is writing about.

Of course, we should never judge a book by its cover. It would be unfair to claim that Jonathan Ashmore is wrong to claim that Lynas's book isn't 'hysteria', just on the basis of the book cover. Though, having said that, the cover does quote the Sunday Times, who say "... I tell you now, is terrifying". We haven't the time to review the book here. So here's a couple of clips from the book, made into a film, featuring Lynas himself, to tell us what he imagines us to be facing.

[See link for clips]

Is this still 'not hysteria'? We believe that it is, because, although Lynas appears to have 'researched' the 'scientific evidence', botching factoids leached from single-studies and worse case scenarios is not 'sound science', it is terrifying, and it hasn't been subjected to any kind of scrutiny. Worse case scenarios are themselves necessarily science fiction - they have value not to science, but to prurient imaginations and politics. Detaching our treatment of them from the caveat that they are both worst-case, hypothetical treatments of very new, untested, unchecked, and unsubstantiated science is nothing but hysteria. Ashmore is highly misleading and dishonest in this regard. Merely saying that it is not hysteria doesn't make it not so. Would he welcome, we wonder, a book which gave a best-case scenario treatment of the science, where humanity not only survives a 6 degree rise in temperatures, but positively thrives. No, he would not. Would it win any awards? The green movement would throw their toys out of the pram at such a book being published, let alone it being given such an accolade. They would call for it to be banned, claiming that it was 'politically-motivated', and misleading. There would be claims that its production had been paid for by Exxonmobil, by a scientist who had prostituted his intelligence and position for profit.

But this is not the first venture into fiction for the Royal Society and its members. It's current president, Martin Rees wrote in 2004, Our Final Hour: A Scientist's Warning: How Terror, Error, and Environmental Disaster Threaten Humankind's Future In This Century - On Earth and Beyond (sold in the UK as Our Final Century: Will the Human Race Survive the Twenty-first Century?) This is a bleak, miserable, pointless story about how our chances of surviving the next 100 years are just 50-50.

Also not against making things up is the previous president of the Royal Society, Lord May of Oxford. Last year, we caught him making things up about Martin Durkin, director of the Great Global Warming Swindle.

May told an audience in Oxford - where he shared a platform with Mark Lynas, interestingly - that Durkin had produced a series of 3 films denying the link between HIV and AIDS, for which Channel 4 were forced to apologise. That is untrue. Earlier last year, following an article reviewing 6 (also alarmist) books on the environment including Al Gore's An Inconvenient Truth, Nicholas Stern's report, and George Monbiot's Heat, we discovered that, inconveniently, May had taken a few liberties with the facts himself, citing a single study, referenced in the Stern Report to make the claim that '15–40 per cent of species' were vulnerable to extinction at just 2 degrees of warming, and that oil companies were responsible for a conspiracy to spread misinformation, and prevent action on climate change. This was a double irony, because in the same article, he had translated the Royal Society's motto - Nullius in Verba - as 'respect the facts', rather than the traditional 'on the word of no one'. Indeed, had May followed the Royal Society's own advice, he wouldn't have been taking Stern's, Monbiot's, and Gore's words for it. But rather than being the incredulous scientist, and subjecting these fictions to the scrutiny we'd expect, May used the groundless alarmism found in these texts to arm 'science' - or rather, the Royal Society - with new authority.

As we said in a letter to the TLS,

Sir, – “Nullius in Verba”, the motto of the Royal Society, is usually translated as “on the word of no one”. That is a fine motto, the message being that knowledge about the material universe should be based on appeals to experimental evidence rather than authority...
It seems that, rather than basing knowledge about the material universe on experimental evidence, the Royal Society and its senior members instead seek authority in science fiction; the extrapolation of superficially plausible science, forward into the future, where a drama plays out.

Mark Lynas first drew significant attention to himself for his views on climate change in 2001, when he threw a custard-pie into the face of Bjorn Lomborg, during a book launch.

Pie-man Mark Lynas said he was unable to ignore Lomborg's comments on climate change. "I wanted to put a Baked Alaska in his smug face," said Lynas, "in solidarity with the native Indian and Eskimo people in Alaska who are reporting rising temperatures, shrinking sea ice and worsening effects on animal and bird life."

Many countries in the Third World are also experiencing the effects of climate change. In Africa, Lake Chad is now a twentieth of the size it was in the 1950s, leaving millions potentially without water. The Pacific island nation of Tuvalu is planning the evacuation of its entire population as sea levels continue to rise.

"And yet despite all this evidence," comments Lynas, "Lomborg somehow contrives to argue that it is cheaper to go on burning fossil fuels than to switch to clean energy to prevent runaway global warming. This feeds right into the agenda of profiteering multinationals like Esso." He continued: "I don't see why the environment should suffer every time some bored, obscure academic fancies an ego trip. This book is full of dangerous nonsense.
Now, however, Lynas the one-time circus-activist stuntman, has his childish perspective on the world given respectability by the establishment's accolades, and has expensive films made about his dark fantasy.

There is a peculiar symbiosis, in which, Lynas and his ilk give the scientific establishment authority by constructing nightmare visions of the future, which are given credibility by figures such as Sir Martin Rees and Lord May. The service that Lynas does for the Royal Society is to connect this institution to our everyday fears and anxieties, to give it relevance at a time when, as with politicians, it struggles to define its purpose.
Seeing those idiotic clips that almost make Gore's movie look restrained and Lynas' smug face I have a strong urge to throw a pie in his face. The difference, of course, is I (or any civilized person) would never actually do it.

This is even worse than I thought. I remember the incident where someone threw a pie in Bjorn Lomborg's face but I didn't remember his name and I had no idea it was the author of this book. Lomborg, a nonscientist like Lynas, would have been much more deserving of the Royal Society's award for both The Skeptical Environmentalist and last year's sober, sensible global warming book, Cool It: The Skeptical Environmentalist's Guide to Global Warming. This Lynas character who thinks pie throwing is an acceptable form of rational debate is not fit to shine Lomborg's shoes. This is worse than Paul Ehrlich getting showered with accolades while Julian Simon gets ignored.

The Royal Society has hit rock bottom.

06-18-08, 10:58 AM
Yet another IPCC scientist comes out against CAGW:


June 17, 2008
Marc Morano

Mythical UN IPCC ‘Consensus’ Continues to Crumble:
Top UN IPCC Japanese Scientist Turns on IPCC.
Calls Warming Fears: 'Worst scientific scandal in the history'

By Dr. Kiminori Itoh, an award-winning PhD environmental physical chemist who specializes in optical waveguide spectroscopy from the Yokohama National University, also contributed to the 2007 UN IPCC AR4 (fourth assessment report) as an expert reviewer. Itoh, a former lecturer at the University of Tokyo, just released his new book Lies and Traps in the Global Warming Affairs (currently in Japanese only).

“We have described many topics in this book, including inaccurate temperature measurements (e.g., A. Watt’s work), ‘observations’ of climate sensitivity, many climate forcings such as colored-aerosol and vegetation (based on 2005 NRC report as Roger has so many times pointed out), and the effect of solar magnetic activity (including my own work),” Itoh wrote on June 17, 2008, on the weblog of former Colorado State Climatologist Dr. Roger Pielke, Sr. Itoh’s new book includes chapters calling man-made global warming fears “the worst scientific scandal in the history.” “I also cited the opinions of Dr. Akasofu (Professor Emeritus, University of Alaska) in the last part of the book. He sincerely advises us‚ ‘When people come to know what the truth is, they will feel deceived by science and scientists,’ and says, ‘IPCC should make appropriate comments before G8.’ I sincerely think he is correct,” Itoh wrote.

Itoh concludes his book with six points:

1. The global temperature will not increase rapidly if at all. There is sufficient time to think about future energy and social systems.

2. The climate system is more robust than conventionally claimed. For instance, the Gulf Stream will not stop due to fresh water inflow.

3. There are many factors that cause the climate changes, particularly in regional and local scales. Considering only greenhouse gases is nonsense and harmful.

4. A comprehensive climate convention is necessary. The framework-protocol formulism is too old to apply to modern international issues.

5. Reconsider countermeasures for the climate changes. For instance, to reduce Asian Brown Cloud through financial and technical aid of developed countries is beneficial from many aspects, and can become a Win-Win policy.

6. The policy makers should be ‘Four-ball jugglers.’ Multiple viewpoints are inevitable to realize sustainable societies.”
The alarmists get ever more shrill as their position collapses. The media keep harping about the warming even as it cools. And because the rotten edifice keeps getting propped up as it crumbles the inevitable fall will be "even worse than previously thought" to use a popular alarmist phrase.

06-18-08, 11:43 AM
This is getting to be a recurring theme. Alarmists say life on earth is fragile. Real world observations and studies say it's robust. Alarmists say living things can't adapt "fast enough." Real world observations and studies say they can. We saw it with the corals and it was ignored by the alarmists and the media.

Now we have some of the same with plants (not even really new, just bolstering previous studies):


Rapid Genetic Change in Terrestrial Plants
Volume 11, Number 25: 18 June 2008

Some fifteen years ago, Root and Schneider (1993) wrote that CO2-induced changes in global climate were expected to occur "too fast for evolutionary processes such as natural selection to keep pace," and that this constraint "could substantially enhance the probability of extinction of numerous species."

This idea has pervaded the thinking of climate-alarmists ever since it was first suggested; and it figures prominently in the ongoing doom-and-gloom predictions of Al Gore and James Hansen. But is it correct? In an exciting new paper recently published in Global Change Biology, Jump et al. (2008) describe an experiment that suggests the contention is fatally flawed.

In Barcelona, Spain's Garraf Natural Park, where they worked with Fumana thymifolia -- a small shrub that occurs around the Mediterranean Basin -- the seven scientists say they "investigated whether reduced seedling establishment observed as a consequence of climate manipulation is a random or selective process, thereby allowing us to answer the key question: does climate change provoke evolutionary change within natural populations?"

Their study had an unaltered control treatment, a drought treatment that employed automatically-activated transparent plastic shields that covered a third of the plots in response to rainfall and retreated when rainfall stopped (which decreased soil moisture by about 20%), and a warming treatment that employed reflective covers that reduced nighttime re-radiation of energy received from the sun during the prior daylight hours from another third of the plots (which increased temperature by about 1°C).

As a result of these environmental interventions, Jump et al. report that over the 7-year period 1999-2005, mean yearly seedling density per treatment was significantly reduced in the drought and warming treatments compared with the control treatment, and that "when compared against control samples, high single-locus genetic divergence occurred in drought and warming treatment samples, with genetic differentiation up to 37 times higher than background (mean neutral locus) genetic differentiation."

In discussing their findings, the researchers say they suggest that the significant reduction in seedling survival they observed in the drought and warming treatments "results from an episode of selection for individuals tolerant of the modified climatic conditions and is not due simply to a random reduction in plant establishment," which implication, in their words, "reinforces results reported by other authors that show that genetic variability for climate-related traits exists within natural plant populations (Hamrick and Holden, 1979; Cobb et al., 1994; Kelly et al., 2003; Mitton and Duran, 2004; Franks et al., 2007)."

Jump et al. thus conclude that contemporary climate change "is driving changes in gene frequency within natural plant populations," and that these changes "are occurring on the same time scale as current climatic changes, based on preexisting genetic variability within populations," additionally citing, in this regard, the supportive findings of Jump and Penuelas (2005), Thomas (2005), Jump et al. (2006) and Reusch and Wood (2007). What is more, they say that this ability to rapidly adapt to rapid climate change may increase the persistence of species "beyond that predicted under a species-based climate envelope approach," such as is typically used by climate alarmists to justify their prediction of impending extinctions of huge numbers of species.

In a conclusion that clearly repudiates this catastrophic extinction scenario, Jump et al. say that their results actually demonstrate "that rapid evolution in response to climate change may be widespread in natural populations, based on genetic variation already present within the population," which likelihood is becoming ever more evident with each new study that investigates the subject.

Sherwood, Keith and Craig Idso
No doubt this will be ignored also.

I know I've said it many times before but it is so vitally important that it can't be said too much. We are at a time after hundreds of millions of years of evolution and adaptation by species. Species here today are here because they have been able to evolve, adapt and survive for hundreds of millions of years. This is not to say they are invulnerable to any change at all but few, if any, are going to be done in by the tiny and slow climate changes we experience today. Even in just the last thousand years we had significantly bigger changes (medieval warm period, little ice age) than now.

06-18-08, 06:49 PM
Smears are easy. Science is hard.


Alabama Biologist Fails Global Warming Teaching Test
Written By: Dennis T. Avery
Published In: Environment News
Publication Date: July 1, 2008
Publisher: The Heartland Institute

Biology professor James McClintock at the University of Alabama/Birmingham says he received a free copy of the book I co-authored, Unstoppable Global Warming: Every 1,500 Years.

He reports, "It provided my Environmental Science class with an opportunity to do their own research. To my surprise, they were unable to uncover any real expertise in climate science on the part of Mr. Avery. ... They inform me that his main cause over the years seems to have revolved around agriculture."

McClintock went on to say, "As for [co-author] Dr. Singer, they discovered that he was a senior fellow at a conservative 'think tank' called the Alexis De Tocqueville Institute, which spent a great deal of time and energy questioning the link between second-hand smoke and lung cancer. ... [H]e seems to come down on the side of conservative and pro-business viewpoints. ... So thank you for providing us with these materials. They really helped to convince my students that they are up against a formidable, organized, and devious foe in their desire to protect the planet."

Impeccably Credentialed

My first question in response to Dr. McClintock is, "What did the students conclude about the 100-plus peer-reviewed studies on the 1,500-year climate cycle that were reported in Unstoppable Global Warming?"

What did your students say, Dr. McClintock, when they found that the three men credited with finding the 1,500-year climate cycle (Willi Dansgaard of Denmark, Hans Oeschger of Switzerland, and Claude Lorius of France) were awarded the environmental equivalent of the Nobel Prize (the Tyler Prize) in 1996? Or did they fail to turn up that very important information?

Dr. S. Fred Singer is a widely published atmospheric physicist. For five years, he was vice chair of the U.S. National Advisory Commission on Oceans and Atmospheres. His last three papers were published by Geophysical Research Letters (two in 2004) and the International Journal of Climate (in 2007).

Strong Objective Evidence

The crux of the book, moreover, is the work of more than 300 authors who had found and published peer-reviewed evidence of the 1,500-year climate cycle. That evidence came from sources such as the following:

* oxygen isotopes in ice core layers from both polar regions plus the Rocky Mountains, the Andes, the Alps, the Himalayas, and the Urals;

* fossil organisms in the layered seabed sediments of at least nine oceans;

* fossil pollen found across North America, South America. Europe, and Asia;

* carbon-dated glacier advances and retreats worldwide--from several cycles; and

* the layered temperature histories of cave stalagmites from every continent plus New Zealand.

The scientists who collected this varied evidence of past climate changes literally went to the ends of the Earth, climbed high mountains, hiked the biggest ice caps, sailed frigid seas, sat at cramped consoles in long-distance aircraft, and dug up evidence from archeological sites in Greenland, Argentina, South Africa, and the Antarctic, among other places.

Smear Tactics Refuted

I am an agricultural economist, and also a trained journalist with newspaper experience. Dr. Singer made sure I got the science right, and I saved much of his valuable time in manuscript preparation.

Did your students actually go into the science of secondhand smoke on which Dr. Singer commented? Did they learn that the EPA-cited studies on the impacts of secondhand smoke failed to reach the usual minimum scientific standard of 95 percent confidence? Smoking is an ugly and dangerous habit, but there are no credible studies of physical harm to humans from secondhand smoke.

There is, however, ample evidence that the world's really dangerous secondhand smoke is found in the huts of Third World families, where burning dung, straw, and charcoal produces massive lung disease problems that have typically been solved by burning kerosene instead.

There are two widely supported theories on why the Earth has warmed slightly since 1850: burning fossil fuels and variations in solar activity. For solar activity we have the evidence of a strong sunspot correlation and new experiments showing cosmic rays and cloud formation as the linkage. For human-emitted carbon dioxide we have only the theory and the climate models that keep telling us we'll get more warming than we've gotten.

When theory disagrees with observation, science tells us to believe the observations. Do your students learn that, Dr. McClintock?

06-18-08, 06:55 PM
Today's Quakes Deadlier Than In Past
June 18, 2008(AP) New research compiled by Australian scientist Dr. Tom Chalko shows that global seismic activity on Earth is now five times more energetic than it was just 20 years ago.

The research proves that destructive ability of earthquakes on Earth increases alarmingly fast and that this trend is set to continue, unless the problem of "global warming" is comprehensively and urgently addressed.

The analysis of more than 386,000 earthquakes between 1973 and 2007 recorded on the US Geological Survey database proved that the global annual energy of earthquakes on Earth began increasing very fast since 1990.

Dr. Chalko said that global seismic activity was increasing faster than any other global warming indicator on Earth and that this increase is extremely alarming.

"The most serious environmental danger we face on Earth may not be climate change, but rapidly and systematically increasing seismic, tectonic and volcanic activity," said Dr. Chalko.

"Increase in the annual energy of earthquakes is the strongest symptom yet of planetary overheating.

"NASA measurements from space confirm that Earth as a whole absorbs at least 0.85 Megawatt per square kilometer more energy from the Sun than it is able to radiate back to space. This 'thermal imbalance' means that heat generated in the planetary interior cannot escape and that the planetary interior must overheat. Increase in seismic, tectonic and volcanic activities is an unavoidable consequence of the observed thermal imbalance of the planet," said Dr. Chalko.

Dr. Chalko has urged other scientists to maximize international awareness of the rapid increase in seismic activity, pointing out that this increase is not theoretical but that it is an Observable Fact.

"Unless the problem of global warming (the problem of persistent thermal imbalance of Earth) is addressed urgently and comprehensively - the rapid increase in global seismic, volcanic and tectonic activity is certain. Consequences of inaction can only be catastrophic. There is no time for half-measures."


06-18-08, 07:18 PM


Sea warmth rise worse than was thought

Deborah Smith Science Editor
June 19, 2008 - 5:48AM

OCEANS have heated up much more rapidly in the past four decades from global warming than scientists had thought.

An Australian and American research team found that between 1961 and 2003 the rate of warming of the upper ocean layers was about 50 per cent higher than was estimated in last year's report by the United Nation's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

A CSIRO scientist, Catia Domingues, of the Centre for Australian Weather and Climate Research, said her team's finding helped solve a big problem for climate researchers.

They had been unable to fully explain why sea levels had risen so rapidly in this period, but this could now be largely attributed to the expansion of the warming oceans. "For the first time we can provide a reasonable account of the processes causing the rate of global sea-level rise over the past four decades," Dr Domingues said.

Sea levels rose about 1.6 millimetres a year between 1961 and 2003.

John Church, of CSIRO Marine Research, said the study, published in the journal Nature, increased scientists' confidence in their climate-change models of sea-level rise.

The CSIRO team reviewed millions of measurements of ocean temperatures, taken from instruments probing the upper 700 metres of the ocean, to assess the contribution of the thermal expansion of the upper layers to overall sea-level rises.

Contributions from melting glaciers, melting ice sheets in Antarctica and Greenland, and thermal expansion of the deep ocean were also analysed.

"We now have a good match between observations and models," Dr Church said.

Last year's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report predicted that by 2100 sea levels would rise 18 to 59 centimetres, with a possible additional 10-20centimetres if flow from melting ice sheets sped up.

A lead author of the report, Professor Nathan Bindoff, of the University of Tasmania, said an increase in sea level by one metre by 2100 was "completely plausible".
First of all they find this rapid rise in the face of other studies which say the oceans have been cooling. Well, they only go through 2003 and the cooling is a recent phenomenon. But one wonders why they ignore it. And one wonders why they stopped in 2003. Later information is available. I guess it just didn't fit the agenda.

Then this real scary sea level rise of 1.6 mm/year for almost half a century. That comes out to 16 cm in a century, about 6.3". Well, I'll tell you, I, for one, am shaking in my boots. Of course, with temperatures, both air and water, cooling and solar and ocean oscillations saying it will probably go on for one to three decades, that figure could very likely be less for the century.

How they get a "completely plausible" result of a meter for the century is, well, one of those alarmist mysteries like the Great Missing Positive Feedbacks and the Great Missing Global Warming Fingerprint of the Tropical Troposphere.

Edit: junkscience reports that the average sea level rise since the end of the last ice age is 8" per century. So the study's figure of 6.3" per century is 21% less than the average, not 50% more.

06-18-08, 08:09 PM
Yes, I saw that and I was holding off, waiting for a rebuttal. Only a few years ago, people were laughing at the idea of the alarmists blaming the tsunami on global warming.

This is insane. Even if the recorded increase in seismic activity is true could it be that our recording instruments have gotten better, that volcanoes and earthquakes have gotten more active because, oh, I don't know, just because they have? I'm sure that's never happened before. No, it's all because of a fraction of a degree C warming. Does it get any more nuts than this? After all the times one would think it couldn't and it has I will never again say it won't.

06-18-08, 08:15 PM
Hell. I'm just glad I could link to it before you. Most of the time I see things and wonder, "has movielib posted this yet? Dare I post it, only to get the dread 'repost'?"

I find it hard to imagine how something with a millionth of a mass of another has any significant impact on the larger body.

06-19-08, 08:26 AM
Here's one of those rebuttals I had been waiting for before posting about the silly study on earthquakes:

http://www.junkscience.com/ (this will fall off the first page tomorrow and be accessible under "Archives" for June 19 thereafter)

From the rubber room: Today's Quakes Deadlier Than In Past - New research compiled by Australian scientist Dr. Tom Chalko shows that global seismic activity on Earth is now five times more energetic than it was just 20 years ago.

The research proves that destructive ability of earthquakes on Earth increases alarmingly fast and that this trend is set to continue, unless the problem of "global warming" is comprehensively and urgently addressed.

The analysis of more than 386,000 earthquakes between 1973 and 2007 recorded on the US Geological Survey database proved that the global annual energy of earthquakes on Earth began increasing very fast since 1990.

Dr. Chalko said that global seismic activity was increasing faster than any other global warming indicator on Earth and that this increase is extremely alarming. (AP)

[Reply by junkscience]:

This would be marginally more plausible had there been any unusual warming but lets just stop and think for a moment. We are told the reason we can't measure any enhanced greenhouse warming is that it is hiding in the deep oceans. So how does a fraction of a degree warming of deep ocean water increase earthquake activity? Moreover, enhanced greenhouse theory demands that the tropical mid-troposphere warms at a rate significantly faster than the surface and yet the observed trend, if real, is a trivial 0.03 K/decade (less than one-third of one degree per century). If there is anything to the enhanced greenhouse hypothesis then AGW must be less than that trend (too small to measure, in other words). So, tell us again how such a trivial change, if it exists at all, has a more powerful effect on the Earth than the difference between diurnal and nocturnal temperatures. Why doesn't the Earth tear itself apart under the heat of the afternoon sun when the surface temperature might be 30 K higher than just pre-dawn? Why do earthquakes occur in Winter at all if surface heating is a key determinant? Surely all crustal tension would be released during Summer if geothermal energy has such difficulty escaping that earthquakes result?

We've probably had enough fun at Chalko's expense but should point out his 'research' is based on totally flawed model output from none other than Hansen himself. Remember the infamous "smoking gun" release? In Earth's Energy Imbalance: Confirmation and Implications Hansen, et al, state: "Our climate model, driven mainly by increasing human-made greenhouse gases and aerosols, among other forcings, calculates that Earth is now absorbing 0.85 ± 0.15 watts per square meter more energy from the Sun than it is emitting to space. This imbalance is confirmed by precise measurements of increasing ocean heat content over the past 10 years." This is the source of Chalko's "NASA measurements from space confirm that Earth as a whole absorbs at least 0.85 Megawatt per square kilometer more energy from the Sun than it is able to radiate back to space. This 'thermal imbalance' means that heat generated in the planetary interior cannot escape and that the planetary interior must overheat. Increase in seismic, tectonic and volcanic activities is an unavoidable consequence of the observed thermal imbalance of the planet" Unfortunately for Tom, they aren't "NASA measurements from space" but Hansen's crappy model output and it's quite wrong. When the "Energy Imbalance" paper was written the model output was a fair wiggle-fit with Willis (2004) and Levitus (2004). Like all happy accidents, however, this good thing came to an end, too. We'll let Professor Roger Pielke, Sr., do the honors:

The Correction To The Lyman Et Al 2006 Paper Is Available - The correction to the Lyman et al paper “Recent cooling of the upper ocean” is available. It is “Correction to ‘Recent Cooling of the Upper Ocean’” by Josh K. Willis, John M. Lyman, Gregory C. Johnson and John Gilson. While this correction eliminates the cooling that they reported in the 2006 paper, the warming of the 1990s and very early 2000s has not continued. This absence of global ocean warming (which is consistent with the absence of a significant global average sea surface temperature anomaly trend for the last few years) is a challenge to the modelers and to the conclusions of the IPCC with respect to the ability to skillfully predict global warming. Indeed, it appears that with respect to the challenge on Climate Science of A Litmus Test For Global Warming - A Much Overdue Requirement, the models have failed so far. (Climate Science)

Indeed, the alleged +0.85 W/m2 "imbalance" simply has not existed at least since 2002 (when Argo floats began reporting actual ocean temperatures) and in fact current indications are that Earth has had a negative balance since Jan '07 as Earth has dumped heat to space and global temperatures have fallen quite significantly.

Chalko up another stupid "global warming" claim completely without foundation in reality. Here's a link to the "paper" (Chalko has had a bee in his bonnet about AGW blowing up the Earth for quite some time).

What you need to know: Relative annual energy release from earthquakes, magnitude 6 or greater, 1900-2008 (source)


(There are numerous links in the text which can be clicked on from my link)

A cursory glance through Chalko's paper that the earth could explode from global warming should clearly tell you this guy is a complete nutbar. It comes complete with scary capital letters and bolding and even talks about Greek mythology (which is supposed to confirm that the ancient Greeks saw a planet in the solar system blow up; this loon appears to be the reincarnation of Velikovsky without the Old Testament stuff).

The graphs above clearly show that the energy from earthquakes is not increasing (although it is true that cherry picking the last 20 year period does give the 5x figure, other cherry picked periods can give you just about anything you want) and one can see it is not correlated to temperatures in the twentieth and early twenty-first centuries (at numerous points earthquake activity has not followed the temperatures).

If you harbor any doubts about Chalko's sanity please see that paper:


I think Al Gore invented Chalko to make himself look sane.

06-19-08, 09:42 AM

06-19-08, 10:04 AM
They're coming fast now, the rubuttals to the Chalko nut:


Wednesday, June 18th, 2008 at 6:17 pm
Earthquakes and global warming
By ryanm

It appears the Associated Press needs to do some explaining or at the very least some vetting of its science reporting. Yet, it is a metaphysical certitude, no pun intended, that the story will be parroted regardless of its veracity.

There have been some attempts to link climate change to earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, and other various geophysical phenomena. However considerable uncertainty surrounds potential mechanisms for such linkages as well as whether we can actually perceive or measure such changes. Recently, an obscure online journal publication (NU Journal of Discovery) article has made it into the press through a release by the author Tom Chalko, an Australian geophysicist. Here is a link to the 2-page published article: Chalko (2008) NU Journal of Discovery

The main finding is that earthquakes have become FIVE times more energetic over the past 20 years, a stunning discovery to say the least. A few hyperbolic statements from the press release:

The research proves that destructive ability of earthquakes on Earth increases alarmingly fast and that this trend is set to continue, unless the problem of “global warming” is comprehensively and urgently addressed…global seismic activity was increasing faster than any other global warming indicator on Earth and that this increase is extremely alarming.

The pertinent figure describing the “alarming” trend shows the annual earthquake ratio, which is described in the paper. Also, the trend is predicted to grow in the future. A simple perusal of the USGS website would easily expose this paper as a complete pile of rubbish: Common Myths about Earthquakes h/t Jeremy Horpedahl

Although it may seem that we are having more earthquakes, earthquakes of magnitude 7.0 or greater have remained fairly constant throughout this century and, according to our records, have actually seemed to decrease in recent years…A partial explanation may lie in the fact that in the last twenty years, we have definitely had an increase in the number of earthquakes we have been able to locate each year. This is because of the tremendous increase in the number of seismograph stations in the world and the many improvements in global communications.


Continuing from the paper:

Results presented in this article indicate that the main danger for humanity on Earth may come not from a slow climate change, but from the rapidly increasing seismic/tectonic activity. In the period of time when the planetary climate changed by a small fraction of one degree, earthquakes have become 5 times more energetic. How long do we need to wait until someone brings this problem to our awareness?

I have no answer to that question. Thankfully, Chalko provides us with one reference and a hypothesis for this increased tectonic and volcanic activity. NASA researchers (Hansen et al. 2005, Science) state that the Earth absorbs approximately 0.85 +- 0.15 Megawatts per square kilometer than it emits, an imbalance that is causing the Earth to overheat.

Planetary interior overheating is the most serious consequence of so-called “global warming” and constitutes the main danger for humanity on Earth today.

I am unsure about the peer-review standards of this journal, but my guess is that it is a bit “shaky”. A simple Google search of the author leads one on a metaphysical search for understanding one’s consciousness.
The last reference in the climateaudit post is to this book:


In the comments on climateaudit, people have found more links to Chalko's insanity.

That Chalko is a loon is indisputable. The AP should be ashamed of themselves for reporting this.

06-19-08, 10:08 AM
When E.G. Beck published a nutty paper that claimed CO2 levels were all over the place in recent history, that, if true, would have supported the skeptics but it was obviously entirely wrong. The skeptics were the first to denounce the paper.

Now comes Chalko with an even nuttier paper that, if true, would support the alarmists, but it is obviously entirely wrong. Will the alarmists denounce the paper? I haven't seen anything yet. I'll give the alarmists some credit; I haven't seen any support yet (except for a few obviously ignorant laypeople commenting on blogs).

06-19-08, 10:16 AM
Lubos Motl's got it too:


Thursday, June 19, 2008 ...
AP and Tom Chałko: global warming and earthquakes

The Associated Press decided to promote a big shot crackpot called Tom Chałko (Australia).

Global warming is causing earthquakes and their energy has increased by 400 percent in two decades, as the guy learned, among many other revolutionary findings.

The rest can be seen in 10.5 Apocalypse (see an excerpt above) that is just being aired on Czech TV NOVA (the 2nd part is aired tonight) which is why I posted it here. ;-) Global warming is speeding up continental drift 1 trillion times, America will be divided into two pieces by a new ocean next week. Add earthquakes, floods, evaporating lakes, gigantic tsunami, breaking dams and collapsing founding fathers, holes in the continent, erupting volcanoes, and so on. :-)

I love these movies but the existence - and, in fact, huge number - of the people who are completely unable to distinguish fiction from reality drives me up the wall.

How difficult would it be for the AP journalists to open scholar.google.com, enter Chałko's name, and see that his most famous paper is "No second chance? Can Earth explode as a result of global warming" (2001) with 4 citations, 3 of which are self-citations and the fourth citation is a book about the importance of the reality of UFO?

The paper I mentioned is about the same topic, namely that global warming overheats the planet's interior. ;-) How difficult is it to multiply the surface of Earth, 510e12 m2, by Hansen's conjectured imbalance 0.8 W/m2 to obtain 4e12 W? And how difficult is to divide this number by the heat capacity of Earth that is close to 4e27 J/K to obtain 1e-15 K/s (or 3e-8 K per year) warming rate? And to see that it is zero for all conceivably practical purposes?

Is it really necessary to use the term "scientist" for complete lunatics who study human auras and their self-healing ability to restore the perfect health (except for the brain) and the unlimited potential of your mind, cure all the diseases (buy the book on the left side), give your life a purpose, and who are windsurfing addicts (haven't we seen this somewhere already)? ;-)

I guess that the "journalists" at the Associated Press will have something to explain. Or maybe not. They may already be reading their auras in order to be bioresonant. And they are reading The Freedom of Choice for the 10th time because the book gets better every time you read it. This Chałko stuff may be the new AP scientific standard. See also Climate Audit.
What more needs to be said?

06-19-08, 10:20 AM
CBS has fallen for it too:


06-19-08, 10:26 AM
The "science journal" Chalko published his "study" in:


Total woo-woo.

"Nothing in the Universe is beyond reach."

Publisher: Natural University


06-19-08, 10:30 AM
Chalko and auras:


OK, I've had enough. No more. (But I really can't promise. This guy is too good.)

06-19-08, 05:18 PM
Chalko update:

CBS has dropped the story but MSNBC has it:


06-19-08, 06:36 PM
MSM outlets trampling over each other to get out from under Chalko story:


CBSNews.com Pulls Story Making Quake/Climate Link Claim
Site says it's AP, AP says it isn't ours; story identical to 'ubercrackpot' scientist's press release.

By Jeff Poor
Business & Media Institute
6/19/2008 7:18:24 PM

Almost every day a news report comes out linking something to climate change – obesity, food riots or a century of wildfires. Some of the claims seem especially outlandish. Sometimes they are.

On June 18, CBS.com posted a story claiming that global seismic activity on Earth is now five times more energetic than it was just 20 years ago because of global warming. The story had no byline, but was attributed to the Associated Press. The story was identical to a June 17 Market Wire press release attributed to Tom Chalko, the scientist that made the claim of the earthquake/global warming link.

However, as of 3 p.m. on June 19, the CBS.com story was no longer available and both CBS.com and AP were blaming the other side for report.

According to Mike Sims, director of news and operations for CBSNews.com, the story was an Associated Press story that came across their wire, but Susan James, a researcher for the Associated Press, told the Business & Media Institute no such story exists in their database.

“It’s not an AP story,” James said. “It’s not turning up in our archives.”

Sims did not immediately return an inquiry for a response to the Associated Press’ claim.

The original story and the identical press release detail the alleged increased danger from earthquakes as a result of global warming. “New research compiled by Australian scientist Dr Tom Chalko shows that global seismic activity on Earth is now five times more energetic than it was just 20 years ago,” the release/story said. “The research proves that destructive ability of earthquakes on Earth increases alarmingly fast and that this trend is set to continue, unless the problem of ‘global warming’ is comprehensively and urgently addressed.”

According to a Web site promoting one of his books, “The Freedom of Choice,” Chalko “holds [a] Master degree in engineering and a Ph.D. in physics (laser holography). His current academic appointment is with the University of Melbourne in Australia.”

The original scientific citation making the global warming connection to earthquakes was published in the NU Journal of Discovery, a journal that “has been created to facilitate exchange of information about the latest discoveries and stimulate the global intellectual activity on Earth,” according to its Web site.

Chalko has done worked pertaining to the “Thiaoouba Prophecy,” a theory the supernatural is connected to the stories in the Bible and a theory about auras, which contends “everything in the Universe seems to be just a vibration.”

Luboš Motl, a former Harvard physicist called Chalko an “übercrackpot” on his blog on June 19 and questioned Chalko’s claim about the increase in seismic energy.

“[T]he earthquake energy hasn't increased, of course,” Motl wrote. “Read the FAQ by USGS who are responsible for seismology. The total energy is dominated by earthquakes at 7.0 or higher and they haven't increased - they have actually decreased a bit in recent years. However, many small earthquakes went undetected in the past.”

Dr. David Legates, a climatologist and an associated professor at the University of Delaware, told BMI the theory was ludicrous.

“The amount of energy coming in from the sun is somehow heating core of the Earth? I mean come on,” Legates said. “That’s ludicrous.”
BTW, here's a pdf of the CBS story attributed to the AP, complete with the AP copyright:


If someone was pulling a hoax to attribute it to the AP, they did a good job.

06-19-08, 11:25 PM
Now the White House is blaming the Midwest flooding on global warming. :suicide:

Maybe (not likely, but maybe) good news was McCain today saying he would consider re-evaluating whether ANWR should be opened or not. We'll see how interested he is in winning the election. He has to start differentiating himself from Obama, and this is one of the main ways he can win a lot of voters.

06-20-08, 06:58 AM
To set the record straight it looks as if the AP did not have anything to do with the Chalko story:


CBS News sinks to new low; publishes crackpot global warming story, attributes it to Associated Press, kills it with no retraction
19 06 2008

Yesterday I posted a story from CBS News: Quake n’ Bake: Global Warming Causes More Energetic Earthquakes?

The main headline was this: Seismic Activity 5 Times More Energetic Than 20 Years Ago Because Of Global Warming

This drew a lot of attention because of the total lack of verifiable science associated with it. I posted some graphs of USGS data showing that the opposite was true, that recent earthquake energy was actually less that in the early 1900’s, and several commenters pointed out that the source of the story, a Dr. Tom Chalko, has some less than stellar associations with what I would describe as “new age” mysticism, such as Thiaoouba Prophecy and “reading your Aura”. He also writes a dandy piece entitled “Global Warming: Can Earth EXPLODE?” which is linked to a website he runs about “bioresonance” where you can buy a “bioresonant” shirt.

So with that sort of science background available on the web for anyone to see in a few seconds of searching, one wonders how CBS News was duped into running a story like this without even bothering to check into the author. This makes the “historic” Microsoft Word documents used by Dan Rather to discredit President Bush’s National Guard Service look like a peer reviewed science paper.

The story gets weirder. CBS attributed the story on their website to the Associated Press (AP) and you can see that clearly in the screen capture of the story below. Odd thing though, there is no byline, no story author as you usually see with an AP story:

After apparently learning of the less than scientific associations of the lead author of the research, CBS removed it from their website as of about 3 p.m. EST on June 19. This was the original link:


Here is where it gets interesting, after CBS pulled the story from their website, I did some searches for it on the Associated Press website at www.ap.org thinking it would still be there.

The story is not found in searches at www.ap.org using “Tom Chalko” or “earthquake global warming”

At the www.ap.org search, for earthquake(s) we find many stories either side of it on June 18th:



But nothing about the Chalko story. Putting in the authors name “Tom Chalko” also yields nothing on ap.org. I wasn’t content with that, so I asked my radio station newsroom at KPAY to run a search on the AP wire stories they receive; nothing turned up. I also asked the editor of our local newspaper, the Chico Enterprise Record, to run a search, and he also found no evidence that AP had transmitted this story.

A further point- it seems to be only connected to CBS News, and their attribution to the AP appears when I do Google News searches such as this one:

“earthquakes global warming Associated press” or “Tom Chalko AP” the only association that appears is the CBS story with (AP) in it, as shown in the screencap below:

As seasoned internet news junkies know, if the story had run on the AP wire service, it would have showed up automatically in several newspapers, radio, and TV station websites. But it did not.

It appears that the original source for this story was from a website in Canada, called “marketwire” which has some of the same exact quotes as the CBS story.


MSNBC also apparently fell for the Marketwire story:

Taking the investigation one step further, Jeff Poor of the Business & Media Institute asked CBS News and AP about it in the story he filed:

“On June 18, CBS.com posted a story claiming that global seismic activity on Earth is now five times more energetic than it was just 20 years ago because of global warming. The story had no byline, but was attributed to the Associated Press. The story was identical to a June 17 Market Wire press release attributed to Tom Chalko, the scientist that made the claim of the earthquake/global warming link. However, as of 3 p.m. on June 19, the CBS.com story was no longer available and both CBS.com and AP were blaming the other side for report. “

“According to Mike Sims, director of news and operations for CBSNews.com, the story was an Associated Press story that came across their wire, but Susan James, a researcher for the Associated Press, told the Business & Media Institute no such story exists in their database. “It’s not an AP story,” James said. “It’s not turning up in our archives.” Sims did not immediately return an inquiry for a response to the Associated Press’ claim. The original story and the identical press release detail the alleged increased danger from earthquakes as a result of global warming.”
So from the four different angles, Google, my local radio station newsroon, my local newspaper newsroom, and AP itself, it has become clear that this was never an Associated Press story. Yet it is even more clear that CBS falsely attributed the story to AP, and then removed it without so much as a note, much less a retraction.

In my opinion, CBS News has no credibility left. This opinion is qualified by: I’ve been to CBS in New York to do work for CBS Newspath, and spent 25 years on TV at two CBS News local affiliates. I’ve been associated with CBS News during my entire TV Meteorology career. I trusted it at one time.

It’s one thing to screw up a story, it happens. But it is quite another to falsely attribute the source, and then to remove the story with no notice or retraction or recognition of the error whatsoever.

Accurate science reporting, particularly in stories attributing almost anything to “global warming” in the mainstream media has been woefully inadequate, but this is pure incompetence on the part of CBS.
Now let's get it all straight. There really is a Tom Chalko, he really did publish this crackpot study in a crackpot journal and it was released as a press release through "Marketwire" ( http://www.marketwire.com/mw/home.do ). But how CBS picked it up and falsely attributed it to the AP is the mystery. MSNBC also picked it up but attributed it correctly.

And when media outlets make a mistake they normally publish a correction and retraction. But CBS just pulled the story without doing so. That certainly seems wrong.

While the AP does push more than its share of enviro propaganda, it shouldn't be falsely attributed when it doesn't.

06-20-08, 07:26 AM
But how CBS picked it up and falsely attributed it to the AP is the mystery. MSNBC also picked it up but attributed it correctly.

And when media outlets make a mistake they normally publish a correction and retraction. But CBS just pulled the story without doing so. That certainly seems wrong.

While the AP does push more than its share of enviro propaganda, it shouldn't be falsely attributed when it doesn't.

CBS and NBC (parent of MSNBC) have both proven time and again that they don't care if one of their reporters makes up a story or someone else makes it up for them. Truth is not as important as agenda and ratings (until they get caught and embarassed, then it's "many sorries" time.)

06-20-08, 03:50 PM
Reporters wouldn't fudge a story for a desired result would they? ;)

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06-21-08, 04:12 PM
Following the Holy Precautionary Principle of the Church of No-Risk Environmentalism is far more risky than anything it's supposedly protecting us from:


Science danger ahead: Baby bottles, BPA and the precautionary principle
Posted: June 19, 2008, 9:57 PM by NP Editor

Forget the ‘precautionary principle.’ The amount of risk to which the public should be exposed is greater than zero. In the case of Bisphenol A, studies prove that we shouldn’t be worried, yet Canadian regulators won’t relent

By Michael Krauss

When I was a child, my grandmother told me to eat the skin of baked potatoes, because that’s where the vitamins are. She neglected to inform me that that was also where the toxins are — defences the potato evolved to combat insect foes and the like. Cars go fast and get us to work, but they can also kill drivers and pedestrians. Electricity illuminates the lives of many but electrocutes the few. Bananas are great sources of potassium, but falls on slippery peels kill several people each year. Eating potatoes and driving are all valid activities ex ante, even if they turn out catastrophic ex post.
All choice involves trade-offs. There are, alas, virtually no no-lose propositions in life.

The ubiquity of risk doesn’t mean we shouldn’t take them, of course. Huddling in caves in fear of man and nature might characterize extreme risk-aversion, but in fact that’s the riskiest behaviour of all — for it guarantees a life that is nasty, brutish and short. Taking reasonable risks, to property and to health, makes life uncertain but also worthwhile.

Much has been made of late, especially in Canada, of the “precautionary principle,” according to which we should err on the side of caution when we are not absolutely certain that an action will have good results. It was entrenched in the 1999 Canadian Environmental Protection Act and is now being inserted by the Conservative government in Ottawa into a revamped Food And Drugs Act and a new Consumer Products Safety Act. The “precautionary principle” is not a legal maxim (though it has been invoked by the Supreme Court) and it is not a scientific law; rather, it is an expression of prudence. Public policy-makers obviously wish to reduce net risk, but a moment’s reflection reveals that the amount of risk to which the public should be exposed is greater than zero.

Statistically, we know that for every kilometre of highway we carefully construct, X construction deaths and (a much larger) Y traffic deaths will occur. But not building highways, we know, would be worse — lengthened commuting times increase the cost of employment, goods and services, reduce our living standards and shorten our lives.

Prescription medicines are approved for use, notwithstanding the statistical likelihood that they will cause as-yet-unknown abreactions in a few. For the many they may be life-savers, yet the precautionary principle would do away with them. Indeed, in 18th-century Europe, precautionary bias caused the deaths of millions who feared possibly dangerous smallpox vaccines. I have written about untold millions of Americans who have been likely sacrificed on the altar of the Federal Drug Administration’s obsessive concern with abreactions — this concern has delayed many drugs and forestalled the development of many others. Those not saved by a non-developed drug will never know what didn’t hit them, as it were — while those who do have abreactions will turn in anger to the civil servant who allowed the injurious drug to be used. In this way do bureaucrats become desensitized to net benefits and obsessed with the precautionary principle.

In an absurd recent illustration of the precautionary principle, hundreds of thousands of Africans died because they were being “protected” by their government against genetically modified donated American corn. The corn could not been “proven safe” to a certainty. How is such proof to be had? How long must we wait until we are certain that the corn consumed by 250 million Americans is safe? Too long for the dying citizens of Zambia, it turned out.

Health Canada issued in 2008 a draft screening assessment and risk management document for Bisphenol A (BPA) for public comment. It decided to use a “precautionary” approach due to the possible risks to pregnant woman, fetuses and infants, and proposed that BPA is therefore “toxic” under Section 64 of the Canadian Environmental Protection Act when used in food containers. This could result in an eventual ban, in Canada, of polycarbonate baby bottles. By comparison, in December, 2007, an FDA official stated “An infant would have to ingest over 7,100 times more than the current daily dietary exposure to BPA before there would be the potential for an adverse toxic effect.” Health Canada does not dispute the American finding — but Canada’s application of the precautionary principle leads inexorably to its conclusion. What gives?

BPA is the basic building block for polycarbonate (the shatter-proof plastic of which eyeglasses, motorcycle windshields, baby bottles and dental sealants are made) and is also used in the epoxy resins lining tin cans and compact discs. It is used to prevent corrosion and contamination of foods when used as an epoxy can coating, and to provide heat resistance and durability when used in bottles. Bisphenol A has not been banned or restricted anywhere in the world — except, perhaps soon, in Canada. The origin of Health Canada’s concern is two independent animal studies (one published in 1997, the other in 1998) that claimed to link small doses of BPA (which was originally developed because it mimics estrogen, though 10,000 times less strongly) to hormonal problems and diseases in rats.

No one has been able to reliably replicate the findings of these two studies in the years since their publication, and no one has reliably reported any evidence in support of their hypotheses. Other studies show an estrogenic effect in rats only in very high oral or subcutaneous doses many thousands of times greater than the greatest possible human exposure. In addition, major species differences exist between rodents and humans in the way BPA is handled in the body. There is thus considerable doubt about the scientific validity of the 1997 and 1998 studies. In 2006 the European Food Safety Authority performed a thorough analysis in estimating and promulgation of a total daily intake (TDI) for exposure of humans to BPA. The agency concluded, relying on very conservative methodologies and inferences (and multiplying by a factor of 1,000 the effects reliably shown in the studies), that 50 micrograms per kilogram of body weight per day can be consumed safely every day throughout a lifetime. This very conservative number is approximately 100 times greater than any estimated human exposure to BPA.

BPA has a 50-year track record of safety. There is no direct evidence that exposure to Bisphenol A adversely affects human reproduction or development. Just last week, the European Chemicals Bureau issued a 400-page final summary report on BPA, leading to the conclusion that there is “no need for further information, testing or risk reduction measures beyond those which are being applied already.” The scientific evidence supporting the safety of Bisphenol A has been repeatedly and comprehensively examined worldwide. In every case, these assessments support the conclusion that Bisphenol A is no risk to human health at the extremely low levels to which people are exposed.

In June, an expert panel of the U.S. National Toxicology Program concluded that concerns about Bisphenol A’s effects on mammary glands and the onset of puberty in young females were “minimal.”

Last year, the Japanese National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology reported that its thorough review of BPA health and safety information concluded that the “human risk of BPA exposure is below the level of concern.”

In 2006, the German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment noted it “does not recognize any health risk for babies that are fed from baby bottles made of polycarbonate.”

In 2005, a statement from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration on the safety of food contact products made from polycarbonate concluded “based on all the evidence available at this time, FDA sees no reason to change its long-held position that current uses with food are safe.”

In 2004, a weight-of-the-evidence evaluation of low-dose reproductive and developmental effects of Bisphenol A conducted by a panel of scientific experts organized by the Harvard Center for Risk Analysis “found no consistent affirmative evidence of low dose BPA effects for any endpoint.”

Despite these findings, BPA can never be proven safe under the precautionary principle.

The precautionary principal might seem to be a modern variety of Luddism, for in banning the unproven technology, the cautious condemn us to the dangers and costs of the status quo. But it turns out that the Luddites may have been more rational than they are given credit for. In The Making of the English Working Class, E. P. Thompson showed that the Luddites were not opposed to new technology per se, but rather to the abolition of regulated prices and the introduction of the free market. For example, the Luddite anthem, General Ludd’s Triumph, includes this stanza:

The guilty may fear, but no vengeance he aims
At the honest man’s life or Estate
His wrath is entirely confined to wide frames
And to those that old prices abate
“Wide frames” were cropping frames, and the old prices were those prices agreed by custom and practice. Thompson cites the many historical accounts of Luddite raids on workshops where some frames were smashed whilst others (whose owners were obeying the old economic practice and not trying to cut prices) were left untouched. The old Luddites were what economists call “rent seekers,” acting as profit-maximizers, objecting to competition that might put them out of business.

The precautionary principle, then, is less a modern Luddism than a fear of the unknown risk, and an irrational preference for the known risk, even if the latter is very likely greater than the former. It is the denial of what has made us the most modern and, yes, safest and healthiest society on the face of the Earth. It is fear and it is unreason. It is downright dangerous.

When do we get to apply the precautionary principle to the precautionary principle?

06-23-08, 10:27 AM
Stark raving mad. But is there anyone who doubts it about Hansen?


Put oil firm chiefs on trial, says leading climate change scientist

Testimony to US Congress will also criticise lobbyists
'Revolutionary' policies needed to tackle crisis

Ed Pilkington in New York
The Guardian,
Monday June 23, 2008

James Hansen, one of the world's leading climate scientists, will today call for the chief executives of large fossil fuel companies to be put on trial for high crimes against humanity and nature, accusing them of actively spreading doubt about global warming in the same way that tobacco companies blurred the links between smoking and cancer.

Hansen will use the symbolically charged 20th anniversary of his groundbreaking speech (pdf) to the US Congress - in which he was among the first to sound the alarm over the reality of global warming - to argue that radical steps need to be taken immediately if the "perfect storm" of irreversible climate change is not to become inevitable.

Speaking before Congress again, he will accuse the chief executive officers of companies such as ExxonMobil and Peabody Energy of being fully aware of the disinformation about climate change they are spreading.

In an interview with the Guardian he said: "When you are in that kind of position, as the CEO of one the primary players who have been putting out misinformation even via organisations that affect what gets into school textbooks, then I think that's a crime."

He is also considering personally targeting members of Congress who have a poor track record on climate change in the coming November elections. He will campaign to have several of them unseated. Hansen's speech to Congress on June 23 1988 is seen as a seminal moment in bringing the threat of global warming to the public's attention. At a time when most scientists were still hesitant to speak out, he said the evidence of the greenhouse gas effect was 99% certain, adding "it is time to stop waffling".

He will tell the House select committee on energy independence and global warming this afternoon that he is now 99% certain that the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere has already risen beyond the safe level.

The current concentration is 385 parts per million and is rising by 2ppm a year. Hansen, who heads Nasa's Goddard Institute for Space Studies in New York, says 2009 will be a crucial year, with a new US president and talks on how to follow the Kyoto agreement.

He wants to see a moratorium on new coal-fired power plants, coupled with the creation of a huge grid of low-loss electric power lines buried under ground and spread across America, in order to give wind and solar power a chance of competing. "The new US president would have to take the initiative analogous to Kennedy's decision to go to the moon."

His sharpest words are reserved for the special interests he blames for public confusion about the nature of the global warming threat. "The problem is not political will, it's the alligator shoes - the lobbyists. It's the fact that money talks in Washington, and that democracy is not working the way it's intended to work."

A group seeking to increase pressure on international leaders is launching a campaign today called 350.org. It is taking out full-page adverts in papers such as the New York Times and the Swedish Falukuriren calling for the target level of CO2 to be lowered to 350ppm. The advert has been backed by 150 signatories, including Hansen.
Junkscience comments:


Whether Hansen has begun to believe some of his fantastic tales or what we don't know but it certainly looks like he's out to more than lunch. In fact it appears Hansen has completely left the planet.

It is no secret that global warming alarmism has been funded to the tune of more than $50 billion while the rational case has allegedly seen something less than $20 million, so alarmism enjoys a funding ratio of over 2,500 to 1. Who should we try for that crime against humanity? Hansen would seem to be a fair target along with coconspirator Al Gore but the case would never make trial since both defendants have established prima facie cases of being mentally unfit.

The only question now is when will Hansen become too embarrassing for even The Guardian to publish.

The saddest part is that all this screeching keeps decibel-sensitive politicians doing the misanthropists' bidding and acting against the interests of their constituents while rational people merely roll their eyes and get on with their lives. Despite the enhanced greenhouse hypothesis visibly collapsing we are still losing to the natur über alles brigade because politicians have zero understanding of the issue but they know bad press will result from going counter to rabid greenies -- and bad press translates to lost votes.
I don't think the 2500 to 1 ratio is entirely justified. The skeptical funding seems to only include the paltry sum contributed by Exxon over the years (which has now stopped) and there has been a little more from other sources (how much is uncertain). And also, much of the funds going to alarmist science has produced studies whose conclusions contradict alarmism although that was not the original intent or (I suspect) the expected result of the funding.

Hansen was wrong in 1988 and he's wrong now. But at least in 1988 the world was warming whereas now it's cooling. And the more it cools, the more Hansen and his ilk scream about how the warming is "accelerating."

06-23-08, 11:36 AM
I've only started following this thread in the last couple months, so I'm sure the topic has been brought up before - Hansen, and those like him, clearly just seem to be on a massive ego trip, no? Not only do they get the attention their mothers never gave them by making claims like this, but they also set themselves up to be saviors and make a pretty penny recommending and instituting the "necessary" changes.

Tuan Jim
06-23-08, 11:41 AM
Finally - there may yet be some hope for common sense in Britain (and hopefully here if they ever did a similar poll).


Poll: most Britons doubt cause of climate changeJuliette Jowit, environment editor The Observer, Sunday June 22, 2008
Article history

The majority of the British public is still not convinced that climate change is caused by humans - and many others believe scientists are exaggerating the problem, according to an exclusive poll for The Observer.

The results have shocked campaigners who hoped that doubts would have been silenced by a report last year by more than 2,500 scientists for the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which found a 90 per cent chance that humans were the main cause of climate change and warned that drastic action was needed to cut greenhouse gas emissions.

The findings come just before the release of the government's long-awaited renewable energy strategy, which aims to cut the UK's greenhouse gas emissions by 20 per cent over the next 12 years.

The poll, by Ipsos MORI, found widespread contradictions, with some people saying politicians were not doing enough to tackle the problem, even though they were cynical about government attempts to impose regulations or raise taxes. In a sign of the enormous task ahead for those pushing for drastic cuts to carbon emissions, many people said they did not want to restrict their lifestyles and only a small minority believe they need to make 'significant and radical' changes such as driving and flying less.

'It's disappointing and the government will be really worried,' said Jonathon Porritt, chairman of the government's Sustainable Development Commission. 'They [politicians] need the context in which they're developing new policies to be a lot stronger and more positive. Otherwise the potential for backlash and unpopularity is considerable.'

There is growing concern that an economic depression and rising fuel and food prices are denting public interest in environmental issues. Some environmentalists blame the public's doubts on last year's Channel 4 documentary The Great Global Warming Swindle, and on recent books, including one by Lord Lawson, the former Chancellor, that question the consensus on climate change.

However Professor Bjorn Lomborg, author of The Skeptical Environmentalist, said politicians and campaigners were to blame for over-simplifying the problem by only publicising evidence to support the case. 'Things that we do know - like humans do cause climate change - are being put in doubt,' said Lomborg. 'If you're saying, "We're not going to tell you the whole truth, but we're going to ask you to pay up a lot of money," people are going to be unsure.'

In response to the poll's findings, the Department for the Environment issued a statement: 'The IPCC... concluded the scientific evidence for climate change is clear and it is down to human activities. It is already affecting people's lives - and the impact will be much greater if we don't act now.'

Ipsos MORI polled 1,039 adults and found that six out of 10 agreed that 'many scientific experts still question if humans are contributing to climate change', and that four out of 10 'sometimes think climate change might not be as bad as people say'. In both cases, another 20 per cent were not convinced either way. Despite this, three quarters still professed to be concerned about climate change.

Those most worried were more likely to have a degree, be in social classes A or B, have a higher income, said Phil Downing, Ipsos MORI's head of environmental research.

'People are broadly concerned, but not entirely convinced,' said Downing. 'Despite many attempts to broaden the environment movement, it doesn't seem to have become fully embedded as a mainstream concern,' he said.

More than half of those polled did not have confidence in international or British political leaders to tackle climate change, but only just over a quarter think it's too late to stop it. Two thirds want the government to do more but nearly as many said they were cynical about government policies such as green taxes, which they see as 'stealth' taxes.

06-23-08, 07:08 PM
Joseph D'Aleo slices James Hansen's baloney:


Monday, June 23, 2008
Hansen’s Anniversary Testimony

By Joseph D’Aleo, CCM, AMS Fellow

On June 23, 1988 James Hansen, Astronomer by degree but climatologist by self appointment testified in front of congress. It was an orchestrated testimony coordinated by the then Vice President Al Gore and a senator from Colorado, Tim Wirth (now running Ted Turner’s UN Foundation) who admitted they picked the day after calling the National Weather Service to ensure it was a hot day. He admitted proudly later they opened all the windows the night before, making air conditioning ineffective and making sure all involved including Hansen would be seen mopping their brow for maximum effect. Hansen testified “Number one, the earth is warmer in 1988 than at any time in the history of instrumental measurements. Number two, the global warming is now large enough that we can ascribe, with a high degree of confidence, a cause-and-effect relationship to the greenhouse effect.”

See in the story below how hard Hansen has worked to try and make his prognostication verify by manipulating data. By his own comments to the UK Guardian “When you are in that kind of position, as the CEO of one the primary players who have been putting out misinformation even via organisations that affect what gets into school textbooks, then I think that’s a crime.” Well the disinformation that comprises the GISS data then by his own words is a crime, and in his own words he “should be put on trial for high crimes against humanity and nature”.

Here is the plot of actual NASA global satellite monthly temperatures since June 1988. Note the anomaly in May 2008 was lower than in June 1988 by nearly 0.3C. Of course, we don’t have June 2008 numbers yet. Please note I am not saying that cooling began in 1988. Satellites show clearly that since 1979 there was a moderate warming which peaked in 1998. A cooling has taken place the last 6 to 7 years. Global station and ocean data with all its warts shows the warming from the early 1900s to the 1930s, cooling from the 1940s to the 1970s then warming again peaking in 1998. I am just making an observation that it is ironic that 20 years after his first testimony about global warming, it is half a degree F oooler globally, not supporting the drastic measure he advocates. Also we can explain not only the trends but each spike or dip with some natural phenomena as we have shown in recent posts.


His testimony will no doubt include reference to upcoming or ongoing dangerous rises in sea level and ignore the data. His radio interview today on the Diane Rehm show this AM on WAMU in Washington DC, (audio links here) provides a preview of what he will tell congress.


He will also no doubt repeat his claim he is being muzzled. He confuses a muzzle with a megaphone as shown by this table of actual Hansen media references by year (thanks to Roger Pielke Jr. on Prometheus).


Today unlike in June 1988, temperatures will be near normal in DC with temperatures in the 70s and 80s with thunderstorms. The last two weeks have averaged 2 degrees below normal.
I especially like the last graph. Hansen has never told the truth about anything as far as I can tell.

06-23-08, 07:37 PM
A meteorologist skewers new government alarmist <strike>propaganda</strike> report:


6-23-08-That's What Karl Says
Government scientists off mission

By Karl Bohnak
Posted: Monday, June 23, 2008 at 2:00 p.m.

The U.S. Climate Change Science Program (CCSP), a division of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), released a report late last week that received big coverage on all the network news outlets. In it, predictions were made that the weather over the United States will get hotter, wetter, more extreme and deadly over the next 50 years because of human-induced global warming.

This report was released at the same time that serious flooding continued over portions of the Corn Belt. The timing appears to be no coincidence, since these NOAA scientists say that there will be more extreme rainfall events because of an increase in atmospheric water vapor caused by warming due to the burning of fossil fuels.

NOAA’s National Weather Service does and excellent job providing warnings and data to the public and private sector. However, these NOAA’s scientists have gone off-mission by implicitly tying the Midwest floods to human-induced global warming.

The reaction to CCSP’s report has been strong and negative from scientists outside of the government. Climate scientist Roger Pielke, Sr.was critical of the report and its authors’ motivations:

"Since this assessment is so clearly biased, it should be rejected as providing adequate climate information to policymakers. There also should be questions raised concerning having the same individuals preparing these reports in which they are using them to promote their own perspective on the climate, and deliberately excluding peer reviewed papers that disagree with their viewpoint and research papers. This is a serious conflict of interest."

Meteorologist Joe Bastardi, medium-range forecast expert at the private firm Accuweather, called the report "nonsense." He went on to comment, "I am not going to let garbage like this get out without challenging it. These guys are forecasting WHAT HAS ALREADY HAPPENED TO HAPPEN AGAIN."

What Bastardi is referring to when he says "already happened," are some of the extreme weather events of the 1930s to the 1950s. Meteorologists who believe natural cycles are more important climate drivers than the human contribution say we are in a pattern of long-term weather similar to the 1930s to 1950s. These scientists point to long-term ocean temperature cycles as the key driver of weather patterns over North America.

Can you imagine how these CCSP scientists and the media of today would have reacted to the weather back then? "The greatest disaster in American history" occurred on the Great Plains during the 1930s. Droughty conditions began in 1930 and peaked between 1934 and 1936 from Texas to Canada. During the summer of 1936, a heat wave, born on the bone-dry Plains, engulfed much of the country. In Upper Michigan, it was our longest, strongest hot spell on record. Temperatures flirted with or exceeded 100 degrees at most locations for nearly a week. Thirteen deaths were directly attributed to the hot weather. This heat wave produced 120-degree temperatures in North Dakota, Kansas and Oklahoma, the first and only time that temperature milestone has been reached outside of the Desert Southwest.

The spring before the heat wave, historic flooding occurred in the northeastern U.S. A combination of deep snow and excessive rains brought record crests on all major rivers in the region. The floods caused 107 deaths with damage totaling over $200 million dollars--a huge sum in 1936. Two years later, the Long Island-New England hurricane smashed into parts of the same area devastated by the floods killing another 700 and producing over 300 million in damage.

Scientists who emphasize natural cycles as the main climate driver say the Pacific Ocean is beginning to cool again, like it did starting in about 1945. Once the Atlantic begins cooling down again, in about a decade, the United States will be surrounded by cooler- than-normal water. These scientists believe we are already seeing a downturn in temperatures and this cooling may be compounded by a less active sun in the coming decades.

On the other hand, the CCSP report sees the world warming without end due to man’s input of CO2. The report sets the stage for a media feeding frenzy, where every extreme weather event will be declared human induced. CCSP scientists will readily admit that the extreme weather events of the 1930s were caused not by man but by natural climate variations—variations which consist of cycles imposed and juxtaposed on each other. These climate cycles are still poorly understood. However, these scientists have made it official—forget understanding natural cycles because they do not matter anymore. Humans are now the primary driver of climate. Back in the 1930s, an extreme event was just bad weather. Now floods, droughts, hurricanes and even earthquakes (according to one network that failed to check its facts) are retribution for the excess of our modern, energy-driven society.

At one time scientists developed theories and then used experiments and observation in an impartial way to prove or disprove these theories. Now we have government-employed scientists who cherry-pick evidence and data to support their viewpoint.

To me, the evidence is clear: the weather will continue to do what it wants to do and we humans need to adapt. We cannot change the weather or climate—all well-intentioned but silly proposals aside. It is also clear that science, more specifically climate science, has taken another credibility hit with this report.
The key here is that studies which do not agree with the alarmists are ignored. The media ignore them also so few people ever know all this overwhelming counterevidence exists. How many people even know both the air and water have been cooling?

But the thing about science is that the truth cannot be muzzled forever. Heliocentricity, plate tectonics and the bacterial cause of ulcers won out against once overwhelming opposition because they are true. The global warming skeptics will win too. Eventually.

Tuan Jim
06-23-08, 09:19 PM
Joseph D'Aleo slices James Hansen's baloney:


I especially like the last graph. Hansen has never told the truth about anything as far as I can tell.

You know that half the references in that article which are presumably "1998" are written as 1988?

06-23-08, 10:22 PM
You know that half the references in that article which are presumably "1998" are written as 1988?
:confused: There are some references in the article to 1988 and some to 1998. They are all correct.

Tuan Jim
06-24-08, 05:10 AM
On June 23, 1988 James Hansen, Astronomer by degree but climatologist by self appointment testified in front of congress. It was an orchestrated testimony coordinated by the then Vice President Al Gore and a senator from Colorado, Tim Wirth (now running Ted Turner’s UN Foundation) who admitted they picked the day after calling the National Weather Service to ensure it was a hot day. He admitted proudly later they opened all the windows the night before, making air conditioning ineffective and making sure all involved including Hansen would be seen mopping their brow for maximum effect. Hansen testified “Number one, the earth is warmer in 1988 than at any time in the history of instrumental measurements. Number two, the global warming is now large enough that we can ascribe, with a high degree of confidence, a cause-and-effect relationship to the greenhouse effect.”

See in the story below how hard Hansen has worked to try and make his prognostication verify by manipulating data. By his own comments to the UK Guardian “When you are in that kind of position, as the CEO of one the primary players who have been putting out misinformation even via organisations that affect what gets into school textbooks, then I think that’s a crime.” Well the disinformation that comprises the GISS data then by his own words is a crime, and in his own words he “should be put on trial for high crimes against humanity and nature”.

Here is the plot of actual NASA global satellite monthly temperatures since June 1988. Note the anomaly in May 2008 was lower than in June 1988 by nearly 0.3C. Of course, we don’t have June 2008 numbers yet. Please note I am not saying that cooling began in 1988. Satellites show clearly that since 1979 there was a moderate warming which peaked in 1998. A cooling has taken place the last 6 to 7 years. Global station and ocean data with all its warts shows the warming from the early 1900s to the 1930s, cooling from the 1940s to the 1970s then warming again peaking in 1998. I am just making an observation that it is ironic that 20 years after his first testimony about global warming, it is half a degree F oooler globally, not supporting the drastic measure he advocates. Also we can explain not only the trends but each spike or dip with some natural phenomena as we have shown in recent posts.

I don't know - maybe they're trying to say that Gore was a senator then and not the Veep? No big deal, but it reads kinda funny.

06-24-08, 06:34 AM
I don't know - maybe they're trying to say that Gore was a senator then and not the Veep? No big deal, but it reads kinda funny.
Yes, of course Gore was not vice president in 1988. That slipped by me. That would be a mistake in the article. But all references to 1988 are otherwise correct.

06-25-08, 07:21 AM
Why most geologists don't subscribe to CAGW:


Published by admin on 24 Jun 2008 at 02:46 pm
Climate change: Learning to think like a geologist

Paul MacRae, June 24, 2008

Geologists are one group of scientists who aren’t part of Al Gore’s “100 per cent consensus” that humans are the principal cause of global warming and that we have to take drastic steps to deal with it.

For example, in March 2008, a poll of Alberta’s 51,000 geologists found that only 26 per cent believe humans are the main cause of global warming. Forty-five per cent believe both humans and nature are causing climate change, and 68 per cent don’t think the debate is “over,” as Gore would like the public to believe.1

The position of the American Association of Petroleum Geologists is quite clear:

The earth’s climate is constantly changing owing to natural variability in earth processes. Natural climate variability over recent geological time is greater than reasonable estimates of potential human-induced greenhouse gas changes. Because no tool is available to test the supposition of human-induced climate change and the range of natural variability is so great, there is no discernible human influence on global climate at this time.2
Why do geologists tend to be skeptics? Is it because they are, as Gore and the “consensus” charge, in the pay of the oil industry? Perhaps, but there may be other, more scientific reasons. As Peter Sciaky, a retired geologist, writes:

A geologist has a much longer perspective. There are several salient points about our earth that the greenhouse theorists overlook (or are not aware of). The first of these is that the planet has never been this cool. There is abundant fossil evidence to support this — from plants of the monocot order (such as palm trees) in the rocks of Cretaceous Age in Greenland and warm water fossils in sedimentary rocks of the far north. This is hardly the first warming period in the earth’s history. The present global warming is hardly unique. It is arriving pretty much “on schedule.”
One thing, for sure, is that the environmental community has always spurned any input from geologists (many of whom are employed by the petroleum industry). No environmental conference, such as Kyoto, has ever invited a geologist, a paleontologist, a paleo-climatologist. It would seem beneficial for any scientific investigatory to include such scientific disciplines.

Among all my liberal and leftist friends (and I am certainly one of those), I know not a one who does not accept that global warming is an event caused by mankind. I do not know one geologist who believes that global warming is not taking place. I do not know a single geologist who believes that it is a man-made phenomenon.3

Finally, a retired scientist who emailed me after reading one of my climate columns in the Times Colonist observed: “Most of my geology friends are skeptics — but it has become politically incorrect to voice such views.”

Current climate conditions are not unusual

Geologists tend to question the anthropogenic theory because their education tells them that current climate conditions are not unusually warm, based on either the past few thousand years, or the past few hundred thousand years, or the past tens of millions of years, or even the past hundreds of millions of years.

It’s possible to look at a graph of the past century and conclude: “Oh, my God, the planet is burning up!” After all, the temperature has been rising, more or less, since the 1850’s, with a dip from the 1940’s to the mid-1970’s.

But what if we take a longer view? That presents quite a different picture. Only 400 years ago, the planet was quite cold, a period known as the Little Ice Age (roughly 1300-1850). Before that, though, during the Medieval Warm Period (roughly 1000-1300), the planet was a degree or two Celsius warmer than today, to the point where Greenland was warm enough for settlement by the Vikings. The Medieval Warm Period and Little Ice Age were clearly a natural occurrences since industrial carbon emissions weren’t yet a factor. Figure 1 is a graph of the last thousand years based on work by climatologist H.H. Lamb.

Figure 1. Lamb graph of temperature over the past 1,000 years

Curiously, the temperature graph preferred by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the famous “hockey stick,” smooths out the Medieval Warm Period and Little Ice Age to create an impression that twentieth-century warming is “the warmest in 1,000 years” (Figure 2). Faced with the flaws in this graph, the IPCC has since dropped it and now claims the climate is the coldest in 400 years, which isn’t that impressive given that we’re coming out of the Little Ice Age.

Figure 2. IPCC hockey stick graph of the past 1,000 years

Over the past 4,000 years, the planet has also experienced warm and cool periods, again quite naturally. In fact, warm times seem to recur on a cycle of about 1,000-1,500 years, as Figure 3 shows.4 The 20th century’s warming appeared pretty much in line with this millennial cycle.

Figure 3. Warming every 1,000 years or so. Source: R.M. Carter

Going back 8,000 years or so, we encounter the Holocene Optimum, which was 2-3 degrees Celsius warmer than today’s temperatures — naturally.

Let’s expand our view once again, to the past 450,000 years (Figure 4). What do we see? A roller-coaster ride of glacials (cold times) and interglacials (warm times), on a cycle of about 100,000 years.

Figure 4. A glacial cycle every 100,000 years

By the way, this is the chart, based on ice core readings taken in Antarctica, that Gore uses in his film An Inconvenient Truth. Gore doesn’t try to explain why this roller coaster has occurred, since if changes in carbon dioxide levels were causing the cycle of glaciations and interglaciations, as Gore implies, then the logical question is what caused the changes in carbon dioxide levels?

Gore doesn’t say, because to do so would destroy his case, but here’s what science says: temperature changes precede carbon dioxide level changes by several hundred years, and temperature changes are caused by changes in solar intensity called the Milankovitch Cycles, not carbon dioxide. The Milankovitch Cycles, based on the earth’s changing position in relation to the sun, appear to be the ultimate drivers of climate over the past few million years.

The four previous interglacials were warmer than today’s

Another interesting observation that Gore doesn’t make because it would destroy his case: the four previous interglacials shown on his chart are all warmer than today’s interglacial (the green line in Figure 4 shows how today’s average temperature compares with that of the three previous interglacials).

Also, note that the interglacial peaks are very steep. Before an interglacial becomes a glacial, warming occurs relatively rapidly (if the warming was slow, the curve would be more rounded), and cooling also occurs rapidly.

If our planet is near the top of its interglacial cycle, then we’d be getting — as part of a natural process — the rapid warming climatologists are so alarmed about. And, we can expect rapid cooling when the balance tips (the steep downward slope). To worry about global warming at this stage in our planet’s geological history seems silly from the geologist’s perspective.

As further evidence that we may be near the high point of the climate cycle, the planet has not warmed since 1998, even though carbon dioxide levels have increased steadily. We may well be heading into a new glaciation while spending billions of dollars on reducing carbon emissions on the false premise that the planet is getting too warm.

During the glacials, much of the northern hemisphere (and Antarctica, of course) is covered with ice two and three kilometres thick. Within our roughly two-million-year-old ice age, the glacials last about 80,000 years. The warmer interglacials, which make global civilization possible, last only 10,000-20,000 years. Our interglacial, the Holocene, began about 13,000 years ago, so we’re well past the half-way point in this cycle of warming and looking at a new glacial in the next few centuries or millennia. Warming is, therefore, from the geologist’s point of view, the least of our problems.

Temperatures have been falling for 65 million years

Suppose we take an even longer geological view: the last 65 million years. Here we see a temperature graph that looks like a double-diamond ski slope: the planet has been gradually but steadily cooling during this time (see Figure 5).5) Note how the climate has seesawed in the past two million years, and how close the tips of the warming periods are to the point where glaciations return.

Figure 5. Global temperature falling for 70 million years

The temperature 65 million years ago, when the dinosaurs were obliterated by a comet, was about 22 degrees Celsius; today, the planet’s average temperature is about 12 degrees Celsius. Carbon dioxide levels have also been falling over this time, but much more rapidly than the temperature (which should, in all but the most die-hard “consensus” climatologists’ minds, destroy the idea that carbon dioxide drives temperature). For most of this time on our planet there were no polar ice caps and, yes, the sea levels were many metres higher than today. Humanity can deal with higher sea levels; we’ll have a lot more trouble coping with three-kilometre-high walls of glacial ice.

Finally, let’s look at the very long-range picture: earth over the past 600 million years (Figure 6). Again, we see fluctuations of temperature but, overall, the planet has been much warmer (and with much higher levels of carbon dioxide) than today, and yet life managed to evolve and flourish.

Figure 6. Temperature and CO2 levels over 600 million years

The planet didn’t experience “oblivion,” as the Secretary General of the UN, Ban Ki-Moon, suggested at the Bali conference on climate change in 2007. It’s curious that not one of the thousands of so-called climate experts at that conference saw fit to educate Ki-Moon on the geological facts before (or, apparently, after) his speech.

Geologists are fully aware that our planet is not unusually warm at the moment, it is unusually cold. They also know that carbon dioxide is not the villain when it comes to warming — for most of earth’s history, temperature and carbon dioxide have shown only the most tenuous relationship, as Figure 6 shows. The correlation today of rising carbon dioxide levels and rising temperatures that worries climate scientists so much is likely just coincidence.

Overall, as Lamb observed, “Seemingly objective statistics may produce a variety of verdicts which are actually arbitrary in that they depend on the choice of observation period.”6 Alarmists like Al Gore have chosen to focus on the past century, and therefore they worry about warming. Geologists take a longer time-frame and know that the planet has been much warmer in the past without “thermageddon,” that we are in an ice age, and that the biggest future problem we face is not warming but cooling.

Who’s right, the geologists or the computer-based climate scientists? There is no certainty in science (a fact that “consensus” climate science seems to have forgotten). However, if we think like a geologist rather than a computer climate specialist, we know that today’s climate is well within past natural variability — for example, previous interglacials and even previous warm cycles within this interglacial were warmer than today.

In other words, the record of past climate history makes it very likely that today’s climate change is based on natural, cyclical factors, not human factors, and that what we need to worry about is a planet that is colder, not warmer.
This illustrates my oft-repeated assertion that the alarmists lack a sense of history. Without that perspective and context, their ravings are meaningless. Theirs is the ultimate cherry pick (and even that cherry pick doesn't hold up).

06-25-08, 07:39 AM
"Green" money doesn't much go to "green" projects.


Associated Press
Report: FPL green energy program misleading
By TAMARA LUSH 06.24.08, 4:04 PM ET

MIAMI - Nearly 39,000 Florida Power & Light customers gave the company $11.4 million over four years to develop green energy, but a report shows most of the money went toward administrative and marketing costs.

According to a 19-page report written by the staff of Florida's Public Service Commission, FPL's Sunshine Energy Program suffers from several problems and "does not currently serve the interest of the program's participants."

The voluntary program charges FPL customers $9.75 per month - on top of the regular energy bill - to help develop alternative power sources. Nearly 39,000 FPL customers participate in it.

According to FPL's web site, for every 10,000 subscribers, the company will develop 150 kilowatts of solar energy in Florida and buy 1,000 kilowatt hours of renewable energy credits.

Public Service Commission staff said only 24 percent of the $11.4 million collected from customers went toward developing renewable energy. The rest went to marketing and administrative costs.

The PSC staff wrote in the report released Monday that the program "must be redesigned to address state renewable energy policies and to better serve the interest of the program's participants." The staff will discuss its findings with the commission during a meeting in Tallahassee on July 1.

The report also criticized FPL's handling of promised solar power projects. One of the few projects actually completed was the installation of solar panels on an upscale residential neighborhood in Naples.

"There could have been other projects that would have provided greater benefits to the program's participants," wrote Public Service Commission staff.

FPL spokeswoman Amy Brunjes says the company is evaluating the report and has already filed paperwork with the Public Service Commission to modify the Sunshine Energy Program.

Brunjes says the company will make an announcement regarding solar energy on Wednesday at Gov. Crist's Climate Change Summit in Miami.

Holly Binns, field director for the Tallahassee-based group Environment Florida, is dismayed by the findings.

"This report is really disappointing for customers, who, I think in good faith, spent their hard earned money to jump start renewable energy in Florida."
Leaving aside the temptation to make a Barnumian remark about the 39,000 <strike>suckers</strike>, oops, I mean customers who voluntarily give $117/year to the power company, I wonder if this is typical of many or most of the similar programs just about every power company has going. It certainly wouldn't surprise me.

06-26-08, 08:14 AM
Hansen the Infallible, Omniscient and Omnibenevolent "Climate Prophet":


The Rantings of James Hansen: Hubris Unparalleled
Volume 11, Number 27: 25 June 2008
On 23 June of this year (2008)

James E. Hansen --Director of NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies -- unleashed a tirade that was truly "beyond the pale" ... even for him.

He said, among other things, that "climate is nearing dangerous tipping points," that if CO2 emissions follow a business-as-usual scenario, "sea level rise of at least two meters is likely this century," that "polar and alpine species will be pushed off the planet," that "ocean life dependent on carbonate shells and skeletons is threatened by dissolution," and that "we have used up all slack in the schedule for actions needed to defuse the global warming time bomb." And he says that his conclusions "have a certainty exceeding 99 percent."

Well if they do, Hansen certainly didn't reach them via the scientific method; for there is likely no other scientist on earth that would give any credence at all to such an extreme claim, especially as it pertains to such a complex subject. And perhaps that is why U.S. House of Representatives member Ed Markey (Democrat, Massachusetts) is reported by Associated Press writer Seth Borenstein (23 June 2008) to have said "we recognize him as a climate prophet."

But why stop there? With a certainty exceeding 99%, Hansen may as well be recognized as a fledgling God.

Hansen's policy prescriptions for the planet are equally extreme and absolute: "we must draw down atmospheric carbon dioxide to preserve the planet we know," "we must demand a moratorium on new coal-fired power plants," a carbon tax "is essential," and "CEOs of fossil energy companies ... should be tried for high crimes against humanity and nature."

But why even bother with trials? ... especially when we have an oracle whose views have "a certainty exceeding 99%" of being correct. Let's just rush out and see how fast we all can carry out his will.

Or perhaps we should actually examine Hansen's rantings just a bit. We have done so in some detail in one of the three major reports we have posted on our website: Carbon Dioxide and Global Change: Separating Scientific Fact from Personal Opinion, which carries the subtitle "A critique of the 26 April 2007 testimony of James E. Hansen made to the Select Committee of Energy Independence and Global Warming of the United States House of Representatives entitled 'Dangerous Human-Made Interference with Climate'." Our report is lengthy, but the complexity of the subject demands much more than the curt contentious claims and dogmatic demands decreed by our "climate prophet."

In addition, we would call your attention to the new DVD we have recently released -- Carbon Dioxide and the "Climate Crisis" - Reality or Illusion? -- which presents the thoughts (and words) of many climate scientists who do not subscribe to the Gore-Hansen religion.

Truly, there is no place in science for the hubris displayed by Hansen in his recent rantings. In such crucial policy matters as where we should get the energy that sustains our way of life -- intimations of the tiniest impacts of which may be seen today in the form of exorbitant gas, oil and food prices (and in a world that has not warmed over the past decade) -- we must carefully test the predictions of climate models against a vast assemblage of real-world physical, chemical and biological data. To do anything less, and especially to bow down to this most recent and outrageous diatribe of Hansen, is to abandon all rationality and disavow our God-given ability to think for ourselves and make our own decisions.

Sherwood, Keith and Craig Idso

06-26-08, 08:52 AM
movielib - there was just a guy from a Madison (maybe it was Town of Madison) planning commission on Fox News, talking about banning drive through restaurants to cut down on CO2 emissions. Eric Sundquist was his name. :lol:

06-26-08, 08:54 AM
Stark raving mad in my home town. The Drive Through Demon:


Mike Ivey: Should Madison ban the drive-through?
Mike Ivey — 6/25/2008 11:37 am

First it was a proposed ban on plastic bags.

Now, a member of the influential Madison Plan Commission wants to ban the restaurant drive-through -- or at least restrict the ubiquitous symbol of America's auto-centric lifestyle.

"Given the concern about all the carbon going into the atmosphere, I'm not sure we should be building more places for people to sit idling in their cars," says Eric Sundquist, who was appointed to the citizen panel by Mayor Dave Cieslewicz this spring.

A former newspaper reporter in Atlanta now working as a researcher at the UW-Madison's Center on Wisconsin Strategy, Sundquist notes that several cities in Canada have recently moved to ban the drive-through coffee shop or stand-alone fast food restaurant (www.ecospace.cc/culture/drive-thru-ban.htm).

"Bans haven't gotten as far in the U.S., although I know San Luis Obispo, Calif., has one," he says.

The issue came up last week during discussions over a conditional use permit for a new Starbucks coffee shop along a congested frontage road across from East Towne Mall.

The site at 4302 E. Washington Ave., in front of the Crowne Plaza Hotel, formerly housed the Frame Workshop retail store but has been vacant for more than a year. Property owner Tim Neitzel now wants to lease half of the 3,300 square foot retail building for a Starbucks that will also feature indoor and outdoor seating.

To facilitate the drive-through, developers are using a portion of the Crowne Plaza parking lot. Drivers picking up their morning coffee will have to make a circle route through the property to avoid potential traffic backups.

But nearby business owners are concerned about bringing more cars through the already congested intersection of East Washington and Continental Lane. The owner of a gas station on the frontage road said it's not uncommon for cars to wait through three traffic signal cycles to get across East Washington.

East Towne area Ald. Joe Clausius admitted the intersection is a problem and said with the Starbucks it "could get very backed up." Still, he said the corridor is badly in need of some redevelopment.

"I'm constantly getting peppered with questions from people about what is happening there and when will it happen," he says.

City officials have given their lukewarm support to the Starbucks, which is scheduled for a November opening. They say it could help create a more pedestrian-friendly atmosphere near the Crowne Plaza.

"While many future customers will likely be driving automobiles, hotel guests and residents to the north represent a potential walking customer," says city planner Heather Stouder.

Sundquist is planning to bring the issue up before the city's Long Range Transportation Planning Commission on which he also serves.

"I know a ban might be difficult so a better approach might be to restrict them," he says, noting an ordinance in Davis, Calif., puts a number of restrictions on drive-throughs, including one relating to air pollution.

Edit: aktick: I was in the process of posting this just as you made your post. :lol:

It is the City of Madison, not the much smaller Town of Madison.

06-26-08, 09:33 AM
I'm glad to see someone not rolling over and playing dead when confronted with crazy environmentalist alarmists like James Hansen:


June 25, 2008, 5:23 pm
Big Coal Fires Back Over James Hansen’s Criminal Complaint
By Andrew C. Revkin

Big Coal is firing back at James Hansen, NASA’s top climate expert, who on Monday told a House committee on energy and climate that he thought top executives of coal and oil companies should be tried for “crimes against humanity and nature.”

Below is a note sent to me by Vic Svec, who you heard from here earlier in the year in relation to efforts by Gov. Kathleen Sebelius of Kansas, a rising star in the Democratic Party, to deny permits for two proposed coal-burning power plants because of their potential contribution to global warming. Mr. Svec is a senior vice president for Peabody, which is the largest private coal producer in the world (to get an idea of their volume, and mission, visit peabodyenergy.com and watch the amazing coal-sales “ticker” at the bottom reel off tons of coal sold per second.

Here’s what Mr. Svec said about Dr. Hansen’s assertions:

1. His use of Holocaust analogies is outrageous and demeaning. It cheapens the dialogue and invites ridicule.

2. The suggestion that a dissemination of ideas be criminalized –- coming from a government employee no less –- does hearken back to World War II. It is stunning and should be pounced upon by everyone who advocates free speech, from the ACLU and talk radio complex to yourself.

3. Blaming big oil and big coal for the broad array of opinions about climate change is disingenuous. If he would imprison those who don’t march in lockstep with his views, the jails would be very, very big. It would include thousands of scientists and university professors and the likes of the president of the Czech Republic, a former founder of Greenpeace and the former founder of The Weather Channel.

4. Speaking for Peabody, our time and energy are being devoted to satisfying an energy-hungry world’s need for coal and advancing the commercialization of carbon capture and storage technology. Among other initiatives, we’re proud to have reduced our greenhouse gas emissions intensity by more than 30% since 1990; to be the initial developer of a supercritical coal plant that will emit 15% lower carbon dioxide than existing plants; to be a founding member of the FutureGen Alliance; to be a part of Australia’s low-carbon Coal 21 program; and to be the only non-Chinese partner in China’s zero-emissions GreenGen project.

In short, while some are interested in sound bites, we’ll keep going about the serious work of providing clean coal, energy solutions and environmental improvement.

Best Regards,

Vic Svec
Too bad Andy Revkin, who is a CAGW alarmist journalist but still one of the less extreme ones, has to call the energy industry "Big Coal" to apparently try to demean, marginalize and trivialize it just a little. He is the master of this more subtle method.

06-26-08, 09:56 AM
As we know, there has been record melting (since 1979 when satellite monitoring began) of Arctic sea ice lately. There has also been the almost unpublicized record highs in Antarctic sea ice at the same time. It seems there may be a nonanthropomorphic and even nonclimatic partial explanation for the Arctic sea ice although it also is not being publicized.


Could Volcanoes Be Melting The Arctic Ice?

From the Agence France-Presse:

Volcanic eruptions reshape Arctic ocean floor: study
Wed Jun 25

PARIS (AFP) - Recent massive volcanoes have risen from the ocean floor deep under the Arctic ice cap, spewing plumes of fragmented magma into the sea, scientists who filmed the aftermath reported Wednesday.

The eruptions — as big as the one that buried Pompei — took place in 1999 along the Gakkel Ridge, an underwater mountain chain snaking 1,800 kilometres (1,100 miles) from the northern tip of Greenland to Siberia.


Scientists suspected even at the time that a simultaneous series of earthquakes were linked to these volcanic spasms.

But when a team led of scientists led by Robert Sohn of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Massachusetts finally got a first-ever glimpse of the ocean floor 4,000 meters (13,000 feet) beneath the Arctic pack ice, they were astonished.

What they saw was unmistakable evidence of explosive eruptions rather than the gradual secretion of lava bubbling up from Earth’s mantle onto the ocean floor…

The mid-ocean ridge runs 84,000 kilometres (52,000 miles) beneath all the world’s major seas except the Southern Ocean, and marks the boundary between many of the tectonic plates that make up the surface of the Earth.

When continental plates collide into each other, they can thrust up mountain ranges such as the Himalayas.

But along most of the mid-ocean ridge — including the Gakkal Ridge — the plates are pulling apart, allowing molten magna and gases trapped beneath the crust to escape…

Both sonar and visual images showed an ocean valley filled with flat-topped volcanos up to two kilometres (1.2 miles) wide and several hundred metres high.

Er, is it not possible that these volcanic eruptions — going back to at least 1999 — may have played a part in whatever melting there has been of the Greenland and Arctic ice sheets?

If there has even been any.

For according to the <strike>global warming cultists</strike> scientists at NOAA’s Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory, the amount in ice began to decline precipitously in around 1999, which is when these volcanoes began their eruption.

But isn’t it funny how not one word about the purported simultaneous decline in arctic ice was ever mentioned in the original article?

Why do you suppose that is?
The volcanic activity, one would think, could affect the sea ice, given the location of the Gakkel Ridge. This would do a great deal to negate the idea that global warming is in any way a significant cause, let alone anthropogenic global warming. Thus it will not be publicized by the MSM.

Edit: Alarmist sites are pooh-poohing this because, they say, the amount of heat contributed by the volcanoes and the distances to the ice through the cold sea would make any contribution negligible.

It's a quantitative question. The researchers state they they have studied only a tiny part of the Gakkel Ridge and they do not really know the extent of the eruptions. I think we have to wait for further study.

06-26-08, 10:29 AM
Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn!http://img63.imageshack.us/img63/9376/scaredwd9.gif

06-26-08, 12:06 PM

Good choice Nobel Comittee

06-26-08, 04:15 PM

Good choice Nobel Comittee
Yup. Post #754 here:


06-26-08, 05:35 PM
Al Gore scares people and turns it into $100 million including his carbon offset business. James Hansen has gotten hundreds of thousands from Heinz and Soros.

Nicholas Stern, author of the scary Stern Review, is a quick study who also sees where the money is.


Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Sir Nicholas Stern, author of the famous Stern Report, which underpins many an argument in favour of climate change mitigation, is behind a 'carbon credit reference agency' launched today.

“If we are to attract the levels of finance necessary to make this a mainstream market and have a strong impact on emissions reduction, risks must be clearly understood, articulated and managed. A detailed ratings system is a vital tool to bring greater clarity, transparency and certainty to the market,” he said.

Of course, where there's muck, there's brass.

The agency, run by the IdeaCarbon group of which Lord Stern is vice-chairman [he is in fact vice-chairman of IDEAglobal], said it would offer investors a guide to the quality of credits and the likelihood that they would be delivered. Sellers of carbon credits would have to pay to have their products rated, while buyers would also pay to gain access to the ratings.

IDEAcarbon sell themselves accordingly:

IDEAcarbon is an independent and professional provider of ratings, research and strategic advice on carbon finance. Our services are designed to provide leading financial institutions, corporations, governments, traders and developers with unbiased intelligence and analysis of the factors that affect the pricing of carbon market assets.

Other group directors include:

Ian Johnson - Chairman
Ian joined IDEAcarbon following a distinguished career at the World Bank. For eight years he was the Bank’s Vice President for Sustainable Development overseeing its work on climate change and carbon finance. Prior to that he played a major role in negotiating the establishment of the Global Environment Facility (GEF) and managed its day-to-day operations for six years. Ian is presently an advisor to Globe, G8+5 and to the UNFCCC.


Samuel Fankhauser – Managing Director (Strategic Advice)
Sam served on the 1995, 2001 and 2007 assessments of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. He also gained hands-on experience in the design of emission reduction projects as a climate change economist for the Global Environment Facility and the World Bank. Sam joined IDEAcarbon from the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, where his most recent position was Deputy Chief Economist.

Now, just imagine the fuss that would ensue, were some figure who was depended on for his impartial advice to make public statements on climate change that weren't in accordance with the 'consensus', and it turned out that that person had a financial interest in the public's perception on matters that he advised about? Might there not be some protest? After all, it's not as if his advice is subtle:

Lord Stern, the former World Bank chief economist whose landmark report on the economics of climate change warned the world risked plunging into economic depression if action was not taken urgently on greenhouse gases, said carbon trading was a “key plank” in dealing with climate change.

It is often said that 'climate change will be worse for the poor'. Well, it turns out that it will be great for the rich. As a December '07 press release shows, there's plenty to be positive about climate change:

“By 2020 the global carbon market could be worth EUR 240-450 billion” says Lord Nicholas Stern, Vice Chairman of IDEAGlobal Group, in the inaugural issue of CARBONfirst

He's no fool, Sir Nick. This gives the lie to the claims that environmentalism is the continuation of anti-capitalism - there is clearly room for capitalists at the fair-trade, organic, global warming beano.

Just shouting about hypocrisy gets nothing done, and doesn't change anything. But how does this happen? Why isn't Stern embarrassed about this? Why don't we see an equivalent to Exxonsecrets.org, showing the monied interests buzzing around the global warming issue? Why is it that this kind of barefaced conflict of interests is largely overlooked, while people like James Hansen call for oil company executives to face trials for 'high crimes against nature and humanity', allegedly for distorting the public perception of climate change for profit?

What this shows is that 'the ethics of climate change' allow for financial and political interests to be overlooked for the 'greater good'. The fact that Stern has been instrumental in creating the idea of mitigation serving that greater good must, by the very standards demanded by the environmental movement, surely raise questions about his profiting from it. Yet don't expect outrage, because, as we have seen before, the ethics of climate change only apply one way. To challenge Sir Nicholas's apparent profiting from his report would be to undermine the very foundations of so many environmentalists' arguments. For example, one of our favourites, Sir Bob May, former president of the Royal Society, in his review of the Stern Report and George Monbiot's Heat, cites Stern as an authority on 'the facts' which we are expected to 'respect'.

Despite the growing weight of evidence of climate change, along with growing awareness of the manifold adverse consequences, there remains an active and well-funded “denial lobby”. It shares many features with the lobby that for so long denied that smoking is the major cause of lung cancer. [...] Whoever got things started, this is a ball which ExxonMobile picked up and ran with, shuttling lobbyists in and out of the White House as it did so. Following earlier talks and seeking to exemplify its centuries-old motto – Nullius in Verba (which roughly translates as “respect the facts”) – the Royal Society recently and unprecedentedly wrote to ExxonMobile, complaining about its funding for “organisations that have been misinforming the public about the science of climate change”, and more generally for promoting inaccurate and misleading views – specifically that scientists do not agree about the influence of human activity on rising temperatures.

06-27-08, 10:02 AM
An important new peer reviewed study shows increases in CO2 cause more phytoplankton to grow which causes more low level destruction of ozone (O3), a greenhouse gas which, molecule for molecule, is far more potent than CO2. In other words, this is a negative feedback which mitigates the CO2 increase heating effect.

As I've often said, the positive feedbacks claimed by the alarmists (and necessary for their alarmism) are ever elusive but we keep finding negative feedbacks, evidence of the Earth's self-regulation.

Lubos Motl blogs about it here and comments on alarmist blog realclimate's irrational response and rationalizations:


Friday, June 27, 2008 ...
Phytoplankton surprisingly destroys a lot of ozone

Dr Katie Read and fifteen mostly U.K. and U.S. co-authors have studied the mechanisms destroying ozone (O₃) in the lower atmosphere above the ocean:

Extensive halogen-mediated ozone destruction over the tropical Atlantic Ocean (scientific paper in Nature, abstract)
Recall that ozone in the lower atmosphere is a highly potent greenhouse gas. Despite its small amount, it is responsible for almost 2/3 of the effect we attribute to CO₂. (The absolute size of the effect remains uncertain, mostly due to unknown feedbacks, but most of these feedbacks are universal multiplicative factors for all greenhouse gases.) When you divide the "shared absorption" in between the overlapping different gases, the percentages of the total greenhouse effect are as follows (source):

* 67%+ H₂O (water)
* 15% CO₂ (carbon dioxide)
* 10% O₃ (ozone)
* 3% CH₄ (methane)
* 3% N₂O (nitrous oxide)

Water itself would be able to cause a much higher percentage of the effect than 67% but some of the spectral lines are absorbed - and attributed to - the competitors. At any rate, you see that O₃and CH₄, when added together, are almost as important as CO₂, so we should care about them.

Is ozone good? The popular cliché is that the lower-atmosphere ozone is a health hazard while higher-atmosphere ozone is helpful to protect us against ultraviolet radiation.

There are all kinds of processes that create and destroy ozone. Dr Katie Read et al., the authors of the present peer-reviewed paper, spectroscopically observed the gases at the Cape Verde Observatory (Atlantic Ocean islands, 500 miles West from Senegal in West Africa).

See also: Other lab problems facing the mainstream theory of the ozone cycle
They found out that phytoplankton apparently creates a lot bromine monoxide and iodine monoxide. These compounds subsequently destroy a lot of ozone and lead to additional products that destroy some methane, too.

The existing conventional mainstream models of Earth's chemistry completely neglect halogens (Fl, Cl, Br, I, At). That's why they end up with a wrong figure expressing how much ozone is destroyed above the ocean - i.e. a wrong figure for the concentration of an important greenhouse gas. The authors decide that the actual amount of ozone destroyed in this way is 50% higher than the models would lead you to believe.

I want to say that the rates of the (halogen-dominated) reactions they are proposing to explain the spectroscopic observations are generally increased by man-made (or other) CO₂ production and by "global warming". Remember that e.g. coccolithophores, a brand of phytoplankton, thrive when the CO₂ levels increase. Also, higher temperatures lead (or would lead) to increased water vapor above the ocean that helps the halogen oxides to escape from the ocean. All these relationships are examples of Le Chatelier's principle i.e. Nature's natural ability to self-regulate. Negative feedbacks always win at the end.

A pseudoscientific reaction from RealClimate.ORG

RealClimate.ORG's Gavin Schmidt clearly doesn't like the fact that the findings show another mildly serious problem with the contemporary climate models. So he spreads some fog. The most breathtaking demonstration of his incompetence (or zeal) is the following quote:

... Yet this is completely misleading since neither climate sensitivity nor CO₂ driven future warming will be at all affected by any revisions in ozone chemistry - mainly for the reason that most climate models don't consider ozone chemistry at all. Precisely zero of the IPCC AR4 model simulations (discussed here for instance) used an interactive ozone module in doing the projections into the future.
Wow! He seems to be so proud that their models neglect virtually everything. So if a mechanism happens to destroy another greenhouse gas that is as important as CO₂, partially as a result of the presence of CO₂ itself, the sensitivity will not be affected "at all"! Who could have thought? Has Mr Schmidt ever heard of feedbacks? Or does he think that there is no interaction (or causal relationship) between the concentration of different chemical compounds (and between temperature, too)? Has he ever heard of the so-called chemical reactions?

What he says is so flagrant denial of basics of science that I believe that most people who have heard some science at the elementary school will know what's wrong with his opinions.

Political activists like him love to talk about positive feedbacks all the time - especially the production of water vapor indirectly caused by CO₂-induced warming - but when it comes to negative feedbacks such as the destruction of other greenhouse gases such as O₃ and CH₄, they shouldn't be looked at "at all"! Is it what you call science and how you want to obtain correct (...) answers, Mr Schmidt? I am stunned.

The climate models that try to emulate the greenhouse effect but that don't reproduce the correct chemistry are simply wrong models because the chemistry that involves the greenhouse gases on either side of the formulae is completely crucial for the greenhouse effect. Because O₃ and CH₄ are also greenhouse gases, it is damn important to know whether they exist in the atmosphere and whether they are being destroyed and whether they will be destroyed in the future (and how much). So Schmidt's statement

Precisely zero of the IPCC AR4 model simulations (discussed here for instance) used an interactive ozone module in doing the projections into the future.
implies that you should now throw precisely all IPCC AR4 models to the trash bin or, to say the same thing more moderately, to work very hard to correct the bug and to introduce the previously neglected important effect that was pointed out by Dr Katie Read et al.

Many similar problems with the models have been found in the past and many more will be found in the future. Science listens - and has to listen - to all these new insights, otherwise it would be no science and it could make no progress. Looking at new data and insights and the elimination (or adjustment) of existing theories is what scientists are really paid for.

Mr Schmidt's own attitude to the error-correcting procedures is clarified by the last sentence of his text:

But it seems that the "climate models will have to be adjusted" meme is just too good not to use - regardless of the context.
Very good. More precisely, what an astonishingly misguided person.

So Mr Schmidt finds error correction in science too good and prefers not to use it and not to correct errors in the climate models. In fact, he even prefers not to talk about adjustments at all because it could indicate that science and models are not the infallible and eternally valid verses from the Holy Scripture that he knows, believes, and uses to evangelize. Instead, they could become temporary insights that could be influenced (or even refuted!?) by every new observation or a new scientific paper - and that would be nothing short of hell! :-)

I happen to use the word "science" for this "hell".

Well, this approach of Mr Schmidt might be one of the reasons why his personal opinions about the climate and the opinions of his comrades at RealClimate.ORG are scientifically worthless piles of crap. The more science will know about Nature, the more crappy the opinions of similar zealots who are not ready to adjust their opinions will be. If you try to quantify how much this particular paper changes the numbers relevant for the climate sensitivity, it is fair to say that 5-10 papers like that are able to change the numbers by something of order 100%. In a year or two, our understanding may be very different if we're doing things right. It's therefore damn important for climate science to (critically) read and (rationally) process such papers!

People like Schmidt are neither willing nor able to correct mistakes in their models and theories. Fortunately for them and unfortunately for the society, they are being paid for something completely different - for a blind promotion of wrong theories and politically convenient conclusions that are irrationally extracted from these wrong, never-updated, obsolete theories.

See also Science Daily, Nude Socialist, and Discover Magazine.
It seems to me that Schmidt is saying the models don't need to be adjusted since they ignore ozone to begin with ("true" but trivial, and which would seem to be a problem rather than a defense).

Schmidt says in his blog that models are being developed that take ozone and other heretofore mostly ignored factors (such as atmospheric chemistry, soil respiration and aerosols) into account (but these models run very slowly due to their much greater complexity). This seems to be an acknowledgement of numerous problems with present models which the alarmists nevertheless have always assured us are so wonderful and reliable.

06-27-08, 07:22 PM
Nothing new here, just a good analysis of Hansen's offensive, anti-science attitude:


Science by intimidation
From Saturday's Globe and Mail
June 27, 2008 at 6:46 PM EDT

Truth may enter the world by many doors, but she is never escorted by force. I thought that was a lesson learned long ago, and learned by none more tellingly than scientists. Real scientists, actually, have learned it. A new amalgam has emerged however, the scientist-activist, and for that specimen it's a lesson passed by.

In the dawn of the Enlightenment, it was scientists who were hauled before tribunals and inquisitions. Galileo is the arch example, the pioneer empiricist who rejected the ancient Earth-centric model of the (then known) universe, and for his pains earned the attention and wrath of the distinctly unscientific Inquisition.

I am drawn to these thoughts, and to the long-decayed example of the Inquisition, by a most curious outburst this week by James Hansen, the principal voice of NASA on the subject of global warming, a man who played – as it were – John the Baptist to Al Gore's messianic teachings on the subject. Dr. Hansen is largely credited with “sounding the alarm” on man-made global warming, and he has been a persistent, high-profile and very aggressive proponent of the cause for over two decades now. Dr. Hansen doesn't take kindly to those who dispute his apocalyptic scenarios. I choose the term, apocalyptic, deliberately. According to Dr. Hansen, mankind may have reached the tipping point with global warming. Should that be the case, wide-scale calamity and catastrophe are inevitable. And should we not have reached the point of absolute crisis, should there be a minuscule interval for the human species to act and avert the very worst, according to Dr. Hansen, what yet remains to be faced is still horrible enough indeed.

Not all the world shares Dr. Hansen's vision of imminent ecological Armageddon. Serious minds, seriously disinterested in the subject, throw up caveats all the time. They question the models of climatological speculation; they question the peculiar mix of man-made and other likely sources of climate dynamics; they question some of the data gathering and some of its interpretation; and they question the very maturity of the highly complex, and experimentally deficient science of global warming itself.

They seriously question, too, the massive policy prescriptions that are being insisted upon as necessary in response to the scientific determinations of man-made global warming. There is lots of room for different, honest opinion on questions so large and complex, questions at the terribly complicated intersection of science, politics and economics.

But, to Dr. Hansen's agitated mind, those who raise such questions, who inject skepticism into the global warming debate, are “deniers.” The word here is becoming commonplace, but it remains a singular slur. A clutch of the global warming believers like to cast all who would argue with them into the polemical pit, the pit being that dissent from orthodox opinion on global warming as the equivalent of Holocaust denial. It is a shameless and vicious tactic, and hardly accords with the nobility that is suppose to drive the conscience of those out to save the planet. Dr. Hansen is overfond of the specious and chilling analogy: He has written of the “crashing glaciers serv(ing) as a Krystal Nacht” and, although he later repented of the metaphor, compared coal trains to “death trains – no less gruesome than if they were boxcars headed to crematoria, loaded with uncountable irreplaceable species.” This week, Dr. Hansen went a step even more noxiously forward.

He called for a tribunal, or as I prefer to call it, an Inquisition, to put on trial for crimes against nature and humanity, the CEOs of the big oil companies who, according to Dr. Hansen's frantic view of things, feed the public “misinformation” about the climate crisis. Again the implicit model is to Nuremberg, as the man attempts to put concern for a future – let us call it a probability – on a moral and factual par with the unquestioned, historical, shattering enormity of the Nazi Holocaust.

Is this a scientist speaking? If so, it is more than curious that in the 21st century it is the scientist calling for the secular equivalent of an Inquisition. More to the point, are these the words of a man really certain of his truth, or one who – with the anxiety of the fanatic – is trying to shield it from all rigour of skepticism and inquiry? In either case, I do not question at all the assertion that it is the voice of a man who is neither a friend to reason or science. This is the voice of the scientist-activist consumed with his own virtue and fearful of all dispute.

Science has no need of tribunals or trials, no need of Nuremberg justice, or analogies with the Holocaust. James Hansen's words this week were an offence, an offence against inquiry, against science, against moral seriousness. They were a piece of insolence against the idea of debate itself.
Why does anyone listen to such an irrational bully?

06-29-08, 10:09 AM
Excellent 10 minute video on climate sensitivity and feedbacks (recommended by Lubos Motl):


This is an excerpt from an hour video:


06-29-08, 04:50 PM
Laurie David as hypoctitical as Al Gore (surprise, surprise!) and gives worthless advice (surprise, surprise!):


Amy Alkon, syndicated advice columnist, journalist and blogger
Advice Goddess Blog
June 29, 2008

Private Jet Aficionado Laurie David On "Greening Our Airports"

You gotta take a step back in awe at the hubris of a Hollywood soon-to-be-ex-wife who takes private jets and owns a second home in Nantucket and who's begging the rest of us to save energy by unplugging our shavers. Larry David's estranged wife is also worrying in print (on the HuffPo, natch!) about all the empty soda cans the airlines are throwing away, writing:

...An NRDC investigation found that the U.S. airline industry discards enough aluminum cans each year to build 58 Boeing 747 airplanes. In a single year, U.S. airlines also discarded 9,000 tons of plastic and enough newspapers and magazines to fill a football field to a depth of more than 230 feet.

...Action tips for the week:

Even when they are 'off,' leaving appliances plugged in still uses energy, so remember before you leave home for summer vacation to unplug all electrical appliances and devices to save energy.

...If you plan to drive to your vacation destination, make sure your car is running efficiently. Keeping your tires properly inflated can improve your gas mileage by more than 3 percent. Saving a gallon of gas will keep 20 pounds of carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere, and leave more money in your pocket for those vacation treats!

Gee, thanks, Laure! How many gallons of gas does that private jet use? How many thousands of pounds of carbon dioxide does it put into the atmosphere? So...you luvvvv the environment ("Here, Bambi!...Here, Bambi!") -- just not enough to stoop to flying first class.

In fact, it seems you take a private jet to the darnest places! Here, in the Texas A&M student newspaper, The Batt, a student says he saw you arrive in one for one of your global warming lectures:

Laurie David, the producer of "An Inconvenient Truth" and global warming activist, told Texas A&M students to change their "individual behavior" in order to consume fewer resources and to help battle global warming. As an employee of Easterwood Airport, I would like to point out that Mrs. David flew to our campus in a luxurious private jet, which could be seen from 10 miles away due to the thick plume of smog it left in its wake. I am neither denying nor confirming the epidemic of global warming, I am simply pointing out that hypocrites such as Mrs. David don't care about the environment, only their own political agendas. This is proven time and again by these celebrities' and lobbyist's "do as I say, not as I do" attitude.

Richard Pawlik
Class of 2007

Ever wonder why I never blog about climate change or global warming or whatever we're supposed to call it? It's because I study evolutionary psychology pretty seriously but I really don't know a rat's ass about physics or climatology. (Doesn't seem to stop Laurie!) Meanwhile, I've been meaning to put up a piece by reason's Ron Bailey on the subject, as he's someone I trust to be impartial judge of the science.

And here's another guy who's likely to have a wee bit more acumen in stats than the average Hollywood soon-to-be-ex. That would be Professor David J.C. MacKay of the Cambridge University Department of Physics, who holds a PhD in computation and neural systems from Cal Tech and a "starred first in Physics," whatever that is. But, as Lewis Page puts it in the Register/UK, chances are, "he knows his numbers":

And, as he points out, numbers are typically lacking in current discussion around carbon emissions and energy use.

MacKay tells The Reg that he was first drawn into this field by the constant suggestion -- from the Beeb, parts of the government etc -- that we can seriously impact our personal energy consumption by doing such things as turning our TVs off standby or unplugging our mobile-phone chargers.

Anyone with even a slight grasp of energy units should know that this is madness. Skipping one bath saves a much energy as leaving your TV off standby for over six months. People who wash regularly, wear clean clothes, consume hot food or drink, use powered transport of any kind and live in warm houses have no need to worry about the energy they use to power their electronics; it's insignificant compared to the other things.

Most of us don't see basic hygiene, decent food and warm houses as sinful luxuries, but as things we can reasonably expect to have. This means that society as a whole needs a lot of energy, which led MacKay to consider how this might realistically be supplied in a low-carbon fashion. He's coming at the issues from a green/ecological viewpoint, but climate-change sceptics who are nonetheless concerned about Blighty becoming dependent on Russian gas and Saudi oil -- as the North Sea starts to play out -- will also find his analysis interesting. Eliminating carbon largely equates to eliminating gas and oil use.

"I don't really mind too much what your plan is," MacKay told The Reg this week. "But it's got to add up."

He says he's largely letting his machine-learning lab at Cambridge run itself these days, and is personally spending most of his time on trying out different energy scenarios.

MacKay sets out his calculations in a book, Sustainable Energy -- Without the hot air. You can download it here (http://www.withouthotair.com/). As he says:

The one thing I am sure of is that the answers to our sustainable energy questions will involve numbers; any sane discussion of sustainable energy requires numbers. This book's got 'em, and it shows how to handle them.

He emphasises that the book isn't quite finished yet, and says he's always glad to hear from someone who has something to add or has spotted a mistake.

That's science for you. It's a beautiful thing. More people should try incorporating some into their self-serving P.R. campaigns for the environment.

Oh, and I forgot to mention, if you read the whole piece, you'll see that MacKay finds nukes -- and innovations in nuclear energy -- to be our best bet for the future.

06-29-08, 05:26 PM
Sharon Begley, the environmental <strike>advocate</strike>, oops, I mean journalist for Newsweek is becoming the biggest cheerleader for CAGW in the American MSM. This week she gets another cover story and her bosses have no problem with it in spite of the fact that one of her own Newsweek colleagues called her out for her last cover story which he called "fundamentally misleading" and "highly contrived.".


Newsweek Blames Midwest Floods on Global Warming
By Noel Sheppard | June 29, 2008 - 14:43 ET

Newsweek's senior editor Sharon Begley has taken it upon herself to publicly declare the recent floods in the Midwest are being caused by global warming.

Those familiar with her work shouldn't be even slightly surprised by this, as Begley was the person responsible for the August 13, 2007, Newsweek cover story "Global-Warming Deniers: A Well-Funded Machine" which evoked widespread criticism including from one of her fellow editors.

Regardless, Begley is at it again with an article in the upcoming issue of Newsweek disgracefully entitled, "Global Warming Is a Cause of This Year’s Extreme Weather" (emphasis added throughout):

The frequency of downpours and heat waves, as well as the power of hurricanes, has increased so dramatically that "100-year storms" are striking some areas once every 15 years, and other once rare events keep returning like a bad penny. As a result, some climatologists now say global warming is to blame. Rising temperatures boost the probability of extreme weather, says Tom Karl, director of the National Climatic Data Center and lead author of a new report from the Bush administration's Climate Change Science Program; that can "lead to the type of events we are seeing in the Midwest." There, three weeks of downpours have caused rivers to treat their banks as no more than mild suggestions. Think of it this way: if once we experienced one Noachian downpour every 20 years, and now we suffer five, four are likely man-made.

As is her typical modus operandi, Begley chose not to offer any balance concerning this recent report, or identify that top scientists around the world have been critical of both its findings and the lead author. As the University of Colorado at Boulder's Dr. Roger A. Pielke Sr. wrote on June 20:

This report perpetuates the use of assessments to promote a particular perspective on climate change, such as they write in the Executive Summary

“It is well established through formal attribution studies that the global warming of the past 50 years is due primarily to human-induced increases in heat-trapping gases. Such studies have only recently been used to determine the causes of some changes in extremes at the scale of a continent. Certain aspects of observed increases in temperature extremes have been linked to human influences. The increase in heavy precipitation events is associated with an increase in water vapor, and the latter has been attributed to human-induced warming.”

This claim conflicts with the 2005 National Research Council report

National Research Council, 2005: Radiative forcing of climate change: Expanding the concept and addressing uncertainties. Committee on Radiative Forcing Effects on Climate Change, Climate Research Committee, Board on Atmospheric Sciences and Climate, Division on Earth and Life Studies, The National Academies Press, Washington, D.C., 208 pp where a diversity of human climate forcings were found to alter global average radiative warming, including from atmospheric aersosols and due to the deposition of soot on snow and ice. The claim of an increase in atmospheric water vapor conflicts with a variety of observations as summarized on Climate Science (e.g. see).

To further illustrate the bias in the report, the assessment chose to ignore peer reviewed research that raises serious questions with respect to the temperature data that is used in their report. As just one example, they ignored research where we have shown major problems in the use of surface air temperature measurements to diagnose long term temperature trends including temperature extremes.

Pielke concluded (emphasis his):

Since this assessment is so clearly biased, it should be rejected as providing adequate climate information to policymakers. There also should be questions raised concerning having the same individuals preparing these reports in which they are using them to promote their own perspective on the climate, and deliberately excluding peer reviewed papers that disagree with their viewpoint and research papers. This is a serious conflict of interest.

Of course, Begley chose not to offer her readers an opposing view, and just continued with the hysteria:

The Midwest, for instance, suffered three weeks of intense rain in May and June, with more than five inches falling on some days. That brought a reprise of the area's 1993 flooding, which was thought to be a once-in-500-years event. The proximate cause was the western part of the jet stream dipping toward the Gulf of Mexico, then rising toward Iowa—funneling moisture from the gulf to the Midwest, says meteorologist Bill Gallus of (the very soggy) Iowa State University. The puzzle, he says, is why the trough kept reforming in the west, creating a rain-carrying conveyor belt that, like a nightmarish version of a Charlie Chaplin movie, wouldn't turn off. One clue is that global warming has caused the jet stream to shift north. That has brought, and will continue to bring, more tropical storms to the nation's north, and may push around the jet stream in other ways as well.

Interesting that Begley cited Bill Gallus, but chose to ignore some of his other opinions concerning the floods, as well as those of one of his colleagues. For instance, as reported by Radio Iowa on June 10 (emphasis added):

The recent spate of wet weather that's stormed over Iowa is very similar to what happened 15 years ago. Iowa State University meteorology professor Bill Gallus has reviewed the data.

"In many ways, the pattern we've had the last two or three weeks is very similar to what lasted for a much longer time in 1993," Gallus says. [...]

Iowa State University meteorologist Bill Gutowski says so-called "climate change" might be a part of this weather equation, but it's too soon to say. "There are physical reasons as well as results from models that indicate that we could expect more intense rainfall events occurring in a much warmer climate, but it'd be really hard to say based on what's going on this year that this is directly an outcome of global warming," Gutowski says. "We would need to see that the...frequency of those events is increasing."

According to Gutowski, one of the challenges researchers face is there are "natural fluctuations" in the climate system, so weather data from a single year is just not indicative of any trend.

Sadly, people like Begley choose to ignore such natural fluctuations, and, instead, blame everything on man.

On the other hand, Gallus did attach one cause of this year's flooding to humans, but not in a fashion that supported Begley's hysteria as reported by Iowa's Gazette on June 6 (emphasis added):

The rains' effect on Eastern Iowa streams and rivers is exaggerated by the lack of crops in nearby fields, said Bill Gallus, Iowa State University professor of meteorology.

"Most of the crops were delayed getting in," said Gallus. "That tends to lead to more water running off into streams and rivers" because there's no vegetation to catch runoff.

Such facts pertaining to the Midwest floods eluded Begley, much as they did with her following declaration: "Hurricanes have become more powerful due to global warming."

Really, Sharon? That's not what hurricane experts such as William Gray and Christopher Landsea believe. In fact, if you've been paying attention, even some of the folks cited by Nobel Laureate Al Gore have changed their minds concerning a connection between global warming and tropical storms including Kerry Emanuel and Tom Knutson.

But why should their opinions matter when you're on a roll?

Of course, the last time Begley was so reckless with her reporting, one of her colleagues, contributing editor Robert J. Samuelson, called the piece "fundamentally misleading" and "highly contrived."

We can only hope her most recent addition to this debate is similarly derided.

06-30-08, 09:39 AM
Roy Spencer has written a potentially very important paper about how and why the alarmists' climate models get the climate sensitivity wrong. This paper has been submitted for peer review and will likely be accepted for publication as is most, if not all, of his work.

The abstract:


This article addresses new satellite and modeling evidence that previous satellite diagnoses of high climate sensitivity--which directly translate into predictions of dangerous levels of global warming--contain a large spurious bias. It is shown that those exaggerated estimates were the result of faulty assumptions regarding clouds when analyzing variations in average global temperature and average reflected sunlight off of the Earth.

Specifically, it has been assumed (explicitly or implicitly) that, for global averages on time scales of three months or more, temperature variations cause clouds to change, but that cloud variations do not cause temperature to change. But when properly filtered, the satellite data reveal evidence of cloud variations indeed causing temperature changes, and that this source of natural climate variability biases the estimate of climate sensitivity in the direction of a very sensitive climate system.

The new interpretation suggests a very low sensitivity. If the new sensitivity estimate is accurate, it would suggest only 0.5 deg. C of manmade warming by the year 2100. The new sensitivity estimate also suggests that warming over the last century can not be explained by human greenhouse gas emissions alone, but instead might require a mostly natural explanation.
The entire paper is also at the above link.

OldDude, I wonder if you could read and comment?

06-30-08, 10:31 AM
Wal-Mart should have known: nothing is ever good enough for environmentalists.



Monday, June 30, 2008
Wal-Mart shouldn't sell out consumers to the greens
John Carlisle

Retail titan Wal-Mart should reassess its questionable commitment to advancing the anti-free market agenda of the environmental movement.

CEO Lee Scott launched this much-hyped sustainability campaign more than two years ago as a desperate gambit to improve the company's image amid a wave of bad publicity over alleged mistreatment of workers and other controversies. Scott also believes that marketing more so-called "green-friendly" products could generate business by attracting ecologically-minded consumers. Both of these assumptions have been proven false.

Wal-Mart rightly calculates that it can not cave into the demands of labor unions because it would undermine the low-cost business model that has made it so successful.

However, it miscalculated that it could shill for the environmental movement's agenda without having to pay a price. With great fanfare, Wal-Mart has set itself some grandiose goals including spending $500 million per year to combat the unproven global warming threat, generating no waste and using 100 percent renewable energy.

The company followed up by directing millions of dollars in contributions to various "green" groups.

The environmentalists' response: Not good enough.

In September 2007, a coalition of environmental, labor and human rights groups released a report, "Wal-Mart's Sustainability Initiative: A Civil Society Critique," denouncing the company's sustainability initiatives. Coalition members include the Sierra Club and Friends of the Earth.

The report argued "that even if Wal-Mart achieved all of its stated goals, the company's business model is inherently unsustainable." The authors downplayed Wal-Mart's pledge to spend millions of dollars to cut greenhouse gas emissions, charging that the company's steps to cut 20 million tons of greenhouse gases each year still ignores the other 220 million tons it creates.

Clearly, Wal-Mart should cease trying to curry favor with such critics. Its efforts only can end in futility.

There is only one constituency Wal-Mart should be concerned with: its customers. Wal-Mart got to where it is today by focusing on the consumer's priority to get quality products at the lowest possible price.

The "green" campaign is anathema to that model. The more Wal-Mart emphasizes sustainability factors in marketing products, the more it risks undermining its competitiveness.

Nowhere is this more apparent than in the company's decision to endorse, at least in principle, federal legislation that would cap carbon emissions through a regulatory framework called "cap-and-trade." Under a cap-and-trade scheme, the government would place ceilings on carbon emissions at a designated level, and subsequently allow companies to buy and sell emission permits.

Although touted as a cost-effective way to regulate carbon emissions, this regulatory system would impose significant costs on businesses and consumers.

That's not the way Wal-Mart sees it, however. At a U.S. Senate hearing in 2006 a Wal-Mart vice president said "because we believe that greenhouse gases can be cost-effectively reduced throughout the economy, that Wal-Mart would accept a mandatory cap-and-trade system to control greenhouse gas emissions."

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) released a study in April 2007, which concluded that, contrary to that claim, cap-and-trade regulations would impose serious financial burdens on consumers -- especially the kind of people who shop at Wal-Mart.

The average income of a Wal-Mart customer is between $35,000 and $40,000. CBO estimates a 15 percent cut in carbon emissions would reduce the income of this category of wage earners by $960.

Wal-Mart rightly points out that its business model saves a typical family $2500 a year. But cap-and-trade regulations will cut this savings by nearly 40 percent. Certainly, Wal-Mart doesn't need to be reminded of the potentially ruinous consequences on company earnings of such a reduction in the buying power of its core customers.

Inexplicably, Lee Scott appears oblivious to the dire ramifications of cap-and-trade regulation as well as other sustainability policies.

At a March 2008 Wall Street Journal conference on business and the environment, Scott took issue with the charge that environmental nonprofits are anti-business.

"We would not be where we are today without (these groups)," said Scott. "And when we started this process, we thought of them as the enemy."

Actually, Scott's first instinct was right. Environmentalists are the enemy. And the quicker Wal-Mart stops trying to win their favor, the more secure its future will be.
The environmental groups are unappeasable. Nothing short of just turning over the entire company to environmental groups would do it. And their "no emissions," "sustainability" and "fair trade" practices would run the company into the ground within two years.

Michael T Hudson
06-30-08, 02:19 PM
Wal-Mart should have known: nothing is ever good enough for environmentalists.


The environmental groups are unappeasable. Nothing short of just turning over the entire company to environmental groups would do it. And their "no emissions," "sustainability" and "fair trade" practices would run the company into the ground within two years.

The remind me of PETA.

06-30-08, 03:01 PM
The remind me of PETA.
That's funny. Because I almost posted:

"The environmental groups are unappeasable. Nothing short of just turning over the entire company to environmental groups would do it. And PETA would still be pissed. And their "no emissions," "sustainability" and "fair trade" practices would run the company into the ground within two years."

07-01-08, 11:27 AM
Shocker! Australian television show broadcasts news feature with both sides of the CAGW debate:

Links to Parts 1 and 2 here (it's not as long as it looks like because the two parts have a lot of overlap - maybe a little over 20 minutes total time):


07-03-08, 06:04 PM
Al Gore, James Hansen and other assorted alarmists can put a cork in the alleged drainpipe through which Greenland is supposedly catastrophically melting:


July 3, 2008, 2:31 pm
A Tempered View of Greenland’s Gushing Drainpipes

By Andrew C. Revkin

I have a story coming tonight in print on a new paper tracking the impact over time of those iconic drainpipes for meltwater forming each summer on the warming flanks of the vast Greenland ice sheet. Here’s the nub, with varied reactions coming from glaciologists later:

One of the most vivid symbols of global warming used by scientists and campaigners to spur society to curb climate-warming emissions is photography of gushing rivers of meltwater plunging from the surface of Greenland’s ice sheet into the depths.

Recent studies have shown these natural drainpipes, called moulins, can speed up the slow seaward march of the grinding ice by lubricating the interface with bedrock below. The faster that ice flows, the faster seas rise. Now, though, a new Dutch study of 17 years of satellite measurements of ice movement in western Greenland concludes that the speedup of the ice is a transient summertime phenomenon, with the overall yearly movement of the grinding glaciers not changing, and actually dropping slightly in some places, when measured over longer time spans.

The work, the authors and other experts caution, does not mean that more widespread surface melting could not eventually destabilize vast areas of the world’s second-largest ice storehouse¹. But for the moment, the study, which is being published in Friday’s edition of the journal Science, throws into question the notion that abrupt ice losses in Greenland are nigh.

“The positive-feedback mechanism² between melt rate and ice velocity appears to be a seasonal process that may have only a limited effect on the response of the ice sheet to climate warming over the next decades,” said the paper.

The study was led by Roderik S.W. van de Wal of the Institute for Marine and Atmospheric Research of the University of Utrecht. More coming anon.
My footnotes:

¹Note that the study's authors must adhere to the requirement that every study must adhere to: saying that this still doesn't mean that disaster isn't around the corner, even though there's not a shred of evidence for it (one might just as well say this study doesn't prove panthers won't eat you in your sleep tonight).

²What is a "positive feedback" that isn't a positive feedback overall? A negative feedback or at most no feedback at all.

Of course for those that have been following the debate in more than the MSM or alarmist websites, this result isn't in the least surprising. Greenland has been "melting" since the last ice age. In recent years the sea levels have been rising slower than the average during all this time. Thus that Greenland is melting more slowly (or at least no faster) is no surprise and is consistent.

Of course this will not stop the alarmists from continuing their lies about "accelerated" melting and sea level rises any more than they have stopped talking about "accelerated" warming even though it's been cooling.

07-04-08, 01:31 PM
You will be glad to know that alarmist scientists are looking out for you. One has found the deadly threat of - your plasma or LCD TV!


Plasma, LCDs blamed for accelerating global warming

Posted Thu Jul 3, 2008 12:41pm AEST
Updated Thu Jul 3, 2008 1:52pm AEST

A gas used in the making of flat screen televisions, nitrogen trifluoride (NF3), is being blamed for damaging the atmosphere and accelerating global warming.

Almost half of the televisions sold around the globe so far this year have been plasma or LCD TVs.

But this boom could be coming at a huge environmental cost.

The gas, widely used in the manufacture of flat screen TVs, is estimated to be 17,000 times as powerful as carbon dioxide.

Ironically, NF3 is not covered by the Kyoto protocol as it was only produced in tiny amounts when the treaty was signed in 1997.

Levels of this gas in the atmosphere have not been measured, but scientists say it is a concern and are calling for it to be included in any future emissions cutting agreement.

Professor Michael Prather from the University of California has highlighted the issue in an article for the magazine New Scientist.

He has told ABC's The World Today program that output of the gas needs to be measured.

"One of my titles for this paper was Going Below Kyoto's Radar. It's the kind of gas that's made in huge amounts," he said.

"Not only is it not in the Kyoto Treaty but you don't even have to report it. That's the part that worries me."

He estimates 4,000 tons of NF3 will be produced in 2008 and that number is likely to double next year.

"We don't know what's emitted, but what they're producing every year dwarfs these giant coal-fired power plants that are like the biggest in the world," he said.

"And it dwarfs two of the Kyoto gases. So the real question we don't know is how much is escaping and getting out."

Dr Paul Fraser is the chief research scientist at the CSIRO's marine and atmospheric research centre, and an IPCC author.

He says without measuring the quantity of NF3 in the atmosphere it is unclear what impact it will have on the climate.

"We haven't observed it in the atmosphere. It's probably there in very low concentrations," he said.

"The key to whether it's a problem or not is how much is released to the atmosphere."
Now I decided to run some numbers because, while NF3 may be 17,000 times as potent a greenhouse gas as CO2, I know that doesn't mean much if there is very, very little of it.

I listened to the recording at my link and I found out that 4,000 tons of NF3 will be manufactured in 2008 (also in the article). If all that is released into the atmosphere it would have the greenhouse equivalent of 68 million tons of CO2.

Then I searched for the amount of CO2 emissions per year. I found figures up to 2005 here:


Adding up the four types shown I got about 48 billion tons of CO2 emissions worldwide for 2005 (of course it's higher now). Doing a little more math told me that the greenhouse effect from the NF3 was about 1/700 that of CO2. Are you terrified? Are you going to swear never again to buy an evil plasma or LCD TV because you're destroying the Earth? Thank goodness I have an ecologically pure DLP!

Now, to be fair, the manufacturing of those TVs is rising and it was said that it might double in 2009. So we're at 1/350 of CO2 (although CO2 is also rising so that's being liberal with the numbers). But of course, sales of the TVs will eventually level off and something better may come along to eliminate them.

But also to be fair, a scientist on the recording said all that would be true only if 100% of the manufactured NF3 found it's way to the atmosphere. He also said perhaps as little as 1% does. We don't know. If it's 1% then we are talking about 1/70,000 of the effect of CO2!

Not addressed was how long NF3 stays in the atmosphere. I assume we don't know.

Finally, it was also said in the recording that NF3 has not been detected in the atmosphere!

All I can say is: Great googly moogly, what the fuck is going on when not only is such useless research being done but it's grabbing scare headlines all over the world?

Contrary to the headline in my link, the only things accelerating are the insanity of the alarmists, the idiocy and gullibility of the environmental journalists and the consequent dumbing down of the public.

07-05-08, 10:09 AM
I found more on NF3 (thanks to a post at ClimateAudit):


Nitrogen trifluoride (NF3)
Jon Robson

The Royal Meteorological Society’s undergraduate vacation research scholarship enabled me to join Professor Keith Shine’s Radiation and Climate Processes research group, at the Department of Meteorology at the University of Reading for 8 weeks in the summer. In my time there I carried out a radiative forcing and global warming potential study of a gas called nitrogen triflouride, working closely with Professor Shine and his research assistant Dr Laila Gohar. This report is a summary of the work that I undertook, and also covers the main points of our findings, which are currently being written up for submission to Geophysical Research Letters.

Nitrogen trifluoride (NF3) is an industrial gas that is primarily used within the semiconductor industry, which at the present time is not included in the basket of gases controlled by the Kyoto Protocol. NF3’s usage has increased over the last decade because the semiconductor industry has begun to use it as a substitute for other fluorinated species. Molecules such as sulphur hexafluoride (SF6) and the perfluorocarbons (PFCs), such as hexafluoroethane (C2F6), have been extensively used within the semiconductor industry as plasma etchants and chamber cleaning gases. In the presence of O2 and high temperatures or plasma, the etching gas in converted to fluorine radicals, which react with the silicon oxide. However, a proportion of the gas is not converted and is vented to the atmosphere where it will accumulate due to the long lifetime of these gases. The fluorinated compounds are potent greenhouse gases because they are extremely stable, and strongly absorb in the infrared radiation. These properties mean that on a per kilogram bases, their 100-year global warming potential (GWP) is normally an order of 10,000 times greater than that of CO2 highlighting the need for careful consideration of their usage.

The semiconductor industry is fast growing, with production increases of 15-17% per annum over a long period. The complexity of devices produced has also increased, therefore requiring more steps in their fabrication, and more steps that require the use of etching gases. It had been estimated that if trends continued the volume of PFCs consumed would be 7-10 times higher in 2010 than in 1995. However there are no known substitutes to these fluorinated compounds and in that perspective the global semiconductor industry agreed to voluntary reduce equivalent emissions of PFCs by 10% in 2010 relative to the 1995 levels.

One motivation for the industry’s increasing interest in NF3 as a source of fluorine, as opposed to the PFCs or SF6, is that there is a higher percentage conversion to fluorine in the cleaning process. Between 90 – 95% of the NF3 used is converted and as a result the emissions of NF3 are smaller than that for alternative sources of fluorine. The usage of NF3 in the semiconductor industry has therefore increased over the past decade, with usage now of the order of 2300 metric tonnes. We believe that emissions are now of an order of 200 metric tonnes per year. Previously there has only been one paper which discusses the climatic impact of NF3 which provides a GWP of 8000, but does not provide details on what it is relative to. Therefore, for a balanced assessment on future increased usage, against other gases, it is important that an accurate assessment of NF3’s effect on the climate is made available.

In order to assess NF3’s climatic effects, new laboratory measurements of the infrared absorbtance of NF3 were determined by the Ford Motor Company. The climatic impact of NF3 was then evaluated by myself, using detailed radiative transfer codes to calculate the radiative forcing for a 1 part per billion by volume (ppbv) increase from zero, in the atmospheric concentration of NF3. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) third assessment report, in 2001, defines the radiative forcing as an externally imposed perturbation to the radiation budget of the Earth’s climate system. It is determined by the change in net irradiance in Wm-2 at the tropopause after an external factor is imposed, in this case it is the increase in atmospheric concentration of NF3. The radiative forcing for a 1 ppbv increase in global atmospheric concentration is called the radiative efficiency, with units of Wm-2 ppbv-1, and is used to calculate the GWP of a gas.

The IPCC [2001] calls for all radiative efficiencies to be calculated in terms of “adjusted” cloudy sky radiative forcing calculated at the tropopause. This is where the temperature of the stratosphere is allowed to adjust so that it remains in global radiative equilibrium. This is because the stratosphere’s adjustment timescale is of a matter of months, compared to decades for that of the tropopause because of the thermal inertia of the ocean. Radiative forcing calculated without stratospheric adjustments are referred to as “instantaneous” radiative forcing.

The adjusted cloudy-sky forcing is calculated using a narrowband radiative model, (NBM) which uses spectra averaged over 10 cm-1 bands. Ideally, a more accurate line-by-line (lbl) radiative transfer would be used to calculate the adjusted cloudy sky radiative forcing; however to include cloud and stratospheric adjustment would still prove too computationally expensive at this time. The line by line code is used to produce a scale factor by comparing the instantaneous clear-sky radiative forcing of lbl and NBM. It is then used to correct the adjusted cloudy sky radiative forcing produced by the NBM. Both models agreed very well for the clear-sky instantaneous radiative forcing, with a discrepancy between the results of less than 2%. The radiative efficiency of NF3 was calculated to be 0.211 Wm-2 ppbv-1, and is estimated to be accurate to 10-15%. This value is approximately 62% higher than the current IPCC [2001] value of 0.13 Wm-2 ppbv-1, with most of this difference due to the increase in the absorption cross section found in the newer laboratory measurements.

NF3’s atmospheric lifetime is 740 years, with produces a 100 year GWP 17200 times greater than that of CO2 on a per kilogram basis. At current release rate of 200 tonnes per annum, we calculate the upper limit of NF3’s concentration in the atmosphere to be 0.16 parts per trillion by volume, making the current contribution of NF3 to radiative forcing trivial. However we offer a significant revision in the radiative efficiency and GWP of NF3 and so raise its importance as a greenhouse gas.

In conclusion the study has shown that there should be a significant revision of the radiative efficiency and GWP of NF3 and a need for the IPCC to revise the value it uses. The study was important as it offers an up to date value for the radiative efficiency and GWP so that an assessment of the desirability of the usage of NF3 is a balanced one. I would like to thank the Royal Meteorological Society for giving me this opportunity and for sponsoring me to undertake this work. I believe that I have learnt a lot form my eight weeks undertaking meteorological research, but also about my abilities undertaking such tasks in future and have received some invaluable experience.
So the lifetime in the atmosphere is said to be 740 years which is taken into account in figuring it's effect relative to CO2 (a question I had in the last post).

More importantly, this says that the actual annual emissions into the atmosphere are 200 tons. In the last post I calculated that the effect of NH3 was 1/700 that of CO2 if all 4000 tons produced in 2008 were released into the atmosphere. But the actual emissions are only 5% of that so the total effect: NH3/CO2 would be 1/14,000.

This link is not dated but it seems to be a little old. At the time it said 2300 tons of NH3 were being produced with 200 tons emitted. Let's be generous and say 10% of what is produced is emitted. So for 2008, 400 tons would be emitted making the NH3/Co2 effect 1/7,000. If it doubles in 2009 it would be 1/3,500. This is bound to level off. One can see that NH3 can be increased significantly without ever getting into any kind of "dangerous" range.

Note that the concentration of NH3 in the atmosphere is estimated to be .16 parts per trillion. That is less than one two billionth of the concentration of CO2.

Enjoy your TVs, everybody. And tell any NH3 alarmist to just shut up.

But if you still feel guilty you could buy a carbon offset to plant one two billionth of a tree.

07-05-08, 11:07 AM
Australia has its counterpart to Nicholas Stern of the (in)famous British Stern Review. Like Stern, Ross Garnaut is also an economist. Like Stern, Garnaut apparently started with the disaster assumptions and ignored any evidence to the contrary.


Failure of the Ross Garnaut report
Article from: The Sunday Telegraph
By Piers Akerman

July 06, 2008 12:00am

TAXPAYERS should ask Professor Ross Garnaut for their money back: his report is little more than a fearmongering document designed to bolster the age-old socialist agenda of wealth redistribution.

It fails from the basis of science and it fails from the basis of economics but it will, however, warm the hearts of the anti-capitalist doom merchants of Europe and inner-urban branches of the Labor Party with its prognostications.

Nostradamus would be proud.

Like all who have signed on to the view that humans are responsible for global warming, Professor Garnaut cites the IPCC's (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) projections on the rate of climate change as coming from a scientifically based consensus.

This is complete rubbish.

The only consensus was between bureaucrats who wanted to agree to a number, the energy-rich Saudis wanted a low number, the energy-deficient Europeans wanted a low number, and they struck a deal which is the basis of Professor Garnaut's consensus.

Starting with that humbug, he then segues to Australia and, with the arrogance of a Belinda Neal, proposes that Australia should be the global leader in a fight against climate change.

King Canute could teach him a thing or two about humility but, then again, Professor Garnaut was handpicked for his task by Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, the master of agenda control.

The world is coming to an end, he says; Kakadu will be inundated, the Great Barrier Reef will die, the Murray-Darling river system will dry up unless we act now.

Oh, sure. But where does he conjure up this fantasy from when the IPCC's own temperature projections are already falling over? Taken over the past 10 years, the trend line for temperature is flat.

If taken from 2001, the trend shows global temperatures falling.

It is as if he is suffering from some cognitive dissonance.

Even the thousands of Argos robots which bob up and down through the ocean levels have measured no increases in temperatures as they sample at different depths.

Professor Garnaut's appearance at the National Press Club on Friday revealed him to be the bureaucrat's bureaucrat, which may be why our uber-bureaucrat Prime Minister fell for him in the first place.

He is not, however, as polished as Sir Humphrey Appleby of Yes, Minister.

Sir Humphrey would not, for example, have insinuated that the adoption of a new tax on industry would make rain fall on the Murray-Darling basin.

He would not have made the mistake of sending out a report which pointed to lower dam levels in the Perth region - which Professor Garnaut blamed on climate change - when those directly engaged in the West Australian water industry know that there is less run-off into Perth's dams now because of the regrowth in the once-cleared catchment area.

Professor Garnaut and his team weren't able to model many important factors because of shaky data, yet he expects us to believe that his predictions of catastrophic consequence should be immediately acted upon.

A few weeks ago, Mr Rudd was congratulated by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon for his support for multilateralism (the failed UN, that is), and Professor Garnaut is also a believer in such institutions, yet he believes that it is imperative that Australia take immediate action on climate change so our nation can be a role model for our neighbours.

Who knows where they teach this stuff, but the notion of anyone of the failed states in the Pacific, or our great Indonesian neighbour to the north, deciding that we are role model in this or anything is so laughably arrogant that it defies description.

Only a basket-weaving Balmain boy scout could possibly believe that other nations would willingly plunge into economic decline because Australia had set the lead.

The biggest environmental crisis facing us today is the collapse of the Murray-Darling system which has little to do with climate change and everything to do with bad political decisions on water use.

The Rudd government and each of the Labor states put that in the too-hard basket last week and pushed it off for another committee meeting to decide what committee should decide on what action.

Senator Penny Wong, who has shown herself to be nothing more than a more eloquent version of her assistant minister, Peter Garrett, and just as useless, says Professor Garnaut's report demonstrates that Australia must act on the climate issue.

Any reading of this irresponsible report would demand that any action be cautiously approached and taken only after exhaustive research, not Ruddite back-of-the-envelope modelling based on flawed inputs.

As for the haste, help me, what a joke. One bushfire, one volcano, one cyclone would destroy in seconds any efforts of a vastly greater magnitude than Australians could physically undertake over 50 years.

Perhaps Mr Rudd wants this report to artificially stampede Australians, to distract them from their more pressing economic problems - who knows?

But it is worth recalling that the last major economic reform this nation underwent, the introduction of the GST (opposed by Labor and Mr Rudd in particular, until he won office), was sold to the public over 17 long years, by Labor Treasurer Paul Keating, Coalition Opposition leader John Hewson and Prime Minister John Howard.

The public knew what it was getting. Professor Garnaut throws up promises of disaster and hopes to generate a wave of fear which would force the Government to take some action.

Forget it, and forget the notion that our near neighbours would line up to cut their economic throats just because we willingly plunged into recession to assuage the guilt of a gathering of gullible Gaia followers in Canberra.

07-05-08, 05:15 PM
World Bank report says the main culprit in rising food prices is biofuels. While this should come as no surprise it's been in the interest of many to try to place the blame elsewhere.


Biofuels behind food price hikes: leaked World Bank report

Fri Jul 4, 3:34 AM ET

LONDON (AFP) - Biofuels have caused world food prices to increase by 75 percent, according to the findings of an unpublished World Bank report published in The Guardian newspaper on Friday.

The daily said the report was finished in April but was not published to avoid embarrassing the US government, which has claimed plant-derived fuels have pushed up prices by only three percent.

Biofuels, which supporters claim are a "greener" alternative to using fossil fuel and cut greenhouse gas emissions, and rising food prices will be on the agenda when G8 leaders meet in Japan next week for their annual summit.

The report's author, a senior World Bank economist, assessed that contrary to claims by US President George W. Bush, increased demand from India and China has not been the cause of rising food prices.

"Rapid income growth in developing countries has not led to large increases in global grain consumption and was not a major factor responsible for the large price increases," the report said.

Droughts in Australia have also not had a significant impact, it added. Instead, European and US drives for greater use of biofuels has had the biggest effect.

The European Union has mooted using biofuels for up to 10 percent of all transport fuels by 2020 as part of an increase in use of renewable energy.

All petrol and diesel in Britain has had to include a biofuels component of at least 2.5 percent since April this year.

"Without the increase in biofuels, global wheat and maize stocks would not have declined appreciably and price increases due to other factors would have been moderate," the report said.

It added that the drive for biofuels has distorted food markets by diverting grain away from food for fuel, encouraging farmers to set aside land for its production, and sparked financial speculation on grains.

But Brazil's transformation of sugar cane into fuel has not had such a dramatic impact, the report said.

"The basket of food prices examined in the study rose by 140 percent between 2002 and this February," The Guardian said.

"The report estimates that higher energy and fertiliser prices accounted for an increase of only 15 percent, while biofuels have been responsible for a 75 percent jump over that period."

07-07-08, 09:40 AM
On July 1, a mathematician claimed he had proved the Riemann Hypothesis, one of the last great unsolved mathematical problems. I do not pretend to understand a word or figure of all this but within days a few math geniuses had demolished the proof because of one mistake in the paper. This was possible because the claimant had, of course, "shown all his work."

Steve McIntyre contrasts this process with the process by which much climate science is done, such as the infamous Hockey Stick in the famous journal Nature. Nature was once a great journal but like many others it has lowered its standards to hastily support climate alarmism whenever it can. Every one of the incidents satirized in McIntyre's following blog at ClimateAudit has actually occurred:


Monday, July 7th, 2008 at 6:43 am
Climate Scientists and the Riemann Hypothesis
By Steve McIntyre

During the last few days, there has been a flurry of activity following an announcement by Xian-Jin Li of a supposed proof of the Riemann Hypothesis, perhaps the most famous unsolved mathematics problem (now that Fermat’s Last Theorem has been solved.) Atle Selberg, an eminent mathematician, recently said:

If anything at all in our universe is correct, it has to be the Riemann Hypothesis, if for no other reasons, so for purely esthetical reasons.
On July 1, 2008, Li posted his proposed proof on arxiv.org here, stating in a short abstract:

By using Fourier analysis on number fields, we prove in this paper E. Bombieri’s refinement of A. Weil’s positivity condition, which implies the Riemann hypothesis for the Riemann zeta function in the spirit of A. Connes’ approach to the Riemann hypothesis.
I recently noticed a quip that there were two sorts of mathematics papers - those where you can’t understand anything after the first page and those where you can’t understand anything after the first sentence. I’m glad that I’m not alone.

Subsequent events showed an interesting role for blogs even in a mathematical field where there are only a few people in the world who can read the paper.

Terence Tao observed the next day (July 2) on his blog (as a comment not even a thread):

It unfortunately seems that the decomposition claimed in equation (6.9) on page 20 of that paper is, in fact, impossible; it would endow the function h (which is holding the arithmetical information about the primes) with an extremely strong dilation symmetry which it does not actually obey. It seems that the author was relying on this symmetry to make the adelic Fourier transform far more powerful than it really ought to be for this problem.
During the next couple of days, Li put two revised versions of his preprint onto archiv.org and seemed to feel that he could cope with this problem.

On July 3 at another blog, Fields Medalist Alain Connes stated:

I dont like to be too negative in my comments. Li’s paper is an attempt to prove a variant of the global trace formula of my paper in Selecta. The “proof” is that of Theorem 7.3 page 29 in Li’s paper, but I stopped reading it when I saw that he is extending the test function h from ideles to adeles by 0 outside ideles and then using Fourier transform (see page 31). This cannot work and ideles form a set of measure 0 inside adeles (unlike what happens when one only deals with finitely many places).
On July 6, it was announced on arxiv.org that the paper had been withdrawn.

This paper has been withdrawn by the author, due to a mistake on page 29.
Li’s failed proof was 40 pages of dense mathematics, with one flaw on page 29. But the flaw was enough to cause the paper to fail.

Just think how much easier it would have been for Li had he published in Nature. His article would have been 3 pages long - a little section on the colorful history of the Riemannn Hypothesis, moving quickly to the “results” and implications. Maybe Nature editors would suggest that he mention the number of zeros was unprecedented. Due to “space limitations”, there would obviously be only a few sentences in the running text on how his proof actually worked, but the words “rigorous” and/or “conservative” would almost certainly have been used.

Their running text in Nature would perhaps said:

“We used the E. Bombieri’s highly conservative refinement of A. Weil’s rigorous positivity condition, which implies the Riemann hypothesis for the Riemann zeta function.”
Isn’t that much more convincing than Li’s original? Now you can see the real defect in Li’s proofs: the failure to use either of the terms of “rigorous” or “conservative”. Instant climate science rejection. Had he correctly used the terms “rigorous” and “highly conservative”, nothing else would need to have been said and the paper would, of course, become an instant classic in climate science. Nobody would actually read it past the abstract, but it would be highly cited.

Had he published in Nature, if asked to provide details on his proof, Li could have refused and been backed up by Nature’s editors, who would have said that their policy does not require authors to show minute details of their methodology. If anyone doubted Li’s proof, if they were so smart, why didn’t they prove the Riemann Hypothesis themselves?

Perhaps 6 years later, someone would decode entrails of the Li “proof” from snippets, whereupon Li would haughtily announce that he had “moved on” to a new proof using an even more rigorous, conservative (and opaque) methodology and so he had been right all along.
If Nature had required Mann et al. to "show their work" on the Hockey Stick, no doubt their errors would have been discovered just as quickly as in this case. Instead they, in effect, covered up the errors and provided cover for them for years. It took the dogged pursuit of the truth by Steve McIntyre and Ross McKitrick, in the face of monumental stonewalling (much of which is still ongoing today), to ferret them out.

07-09-08, 07:26 AM
I've been thinking the news on the CAGW front has been a little slow lately but really, it's only because most of the news has been the same old repetitive crap of blaming everything on global warming. Most are recycled lies and exaggerations (such as coral reefs, penguins, diseases etc.) with the exception of a couple such as the new NF3 scare and the Garnaut Report which I did report. But just to show that alarmists never sleep, Lubos Motl has collected a few links from just the last 24 hours:


A few amazing links from the last 24 hours:

We need a spiritual war on global warming
Global warming will destroy the ex-Soviet Union (WWF)
That includes diseases and drought in Russia
Proletarians of all countries, unite against global warming
Emigrate to Canada to save your life from global warming
Global warming bolsters Californian glaciers (oops)
Cheney blocked testimony that global warming kills trillions of people [Lubos satirically exaggerated this one]
Reducing CO2 production by 50 percent is not enough!
Global warming is for real in Tanzania
Global warming heats up Kevin Rudd
John Howard feels the heat, too
Global warming brings bad air to Idaho
Climate change may kill wildlife
... and coral reefs
... and Indian wheat
... and it freezes penguin chicks
... and cuts severity of storms (oops)
... maybe some European grassland ecosystems will survive
CBS: How wikipropaganda (Connolley et al.) works
Global warming sells Coke, not just candy
Spider-man against global warming
Superstitious right fights good science on global warming
Global warming causes fires in California
Ross Garnaut: the NSW treasurer is a well-known denier
Kathleen Sebelius, a hardcore AGW crusader, a possible Obama's VP
Californian cars get global warming score
Obviously I can't report on every CAGW story that pops up or I wouldn't have even the boring life I do have but most of the "news" is recycled same old shit anyway. I'll continue to report on things that are new, significant or that I otherwise find interesting.

07-09-08, 07:53 AM
Yesterday there were a couple of big stories about climate change, the first being the G8 agreement to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 50% by 2050:

<b><a href = "http://www.news.com.au/story/0,23599,23991160-5009760,00.html">G8 leaders clinch deal on climate change</a></b>

(There are tons of other stories about it; I just linked the one.)

Environmental groups said it didn't go far enough, and, for advocates of reducing emissions, the big problem is that the agreement has no force of law - it's mainly a statement of intent.

The second story concerned allegations that Vice-President Dick Cheney's office altered testimony of a CDC official warning against the health risks associated with global warming:

<b><a href = "http://www.nytimes.com/2008/07/09/washington/09enviro.html?em&ex=1215748800&en=572395f36646a6c2&ei=5087%0A">Cheney’s Office Said to Edit Draft Testimony</a></b>

Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA) is investigating the matter.

07-09-08, 08:03 AM
Boxer is investigating. That will be interesting. The chairman and ranking member of that committee (Boxer & Inhofe) are most likely the two radical members of the U. S. Senate. I hope CSPAN carries the meetings. It'll be something to see.

07-09-08, 10:04 AM
Yesterday there were a couple of big stories about climate change, the first being the G8 agreement to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 50% by 2050:

<b><a href = "http://www.news.com.au/story/0,23599,23991160-5009760,00.html">G8 leaders clinch deal on climate change</a></b>

(There are tons of other stories about it; I just linked the one.)

Environmental groups said it didn't go far enough, and, for advocates of reducing emissions, the big problem is that the agreement has no force of law - it's mainly a statement of intent.

The second story concerned allegations that Vice-President Dick Cheney's office altered testimony of a CDC official warning against the health risks associated with global warming:

<b><a href = "http://www.nytimes.com/2008/07/09/washington/09enviro.html?em&ex=1215748800&en=572395f36646a6c2&ei=5087%0A">Cheney’s Office Said to Edit Draft Testimony</a></b>

Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA) is investigating the matter.
Yeah, of course I saw those. I didn't think either one was very significant. The G8 agreement is nonbinding and, as I've said before about many other similar proposals, no country is going to ruin its economy over it anyway.

The Cheney story is another in a line of accusations about the Bush administration's "censoring" of scientists like the "muzzled" James Hansen. As I'm sure you know, I am no fan or defender of the Bush administration. The issue is whether the administration has the right to oversee the release of information it deems wrong. I don't much care but I think it's stupid, if not wrong, to appear you are trying to cover something up. But it's one in a long line of similar incidents and thus is the same old shit.

07-09-08, 10:12 AM
Yeah, of course I saw those. I didn't think either one was very significant. The G8 agreement is nonbinding and, as I've said before about many other similar proposals, no country is going to ruin its economy over it anyway.

The Cheney story is another in a line of accusations about the Bush administration's "censoring" of scientists like the "muzzled" James Hansen. As I'm sure you know, I am no fan or defender of the Bush administration. The issue is whether the administration has the right to oversee the release of information it deems wrong. I don't much care but I think it's stupid, if not wrong, to appear you are trying to cover something up. But it's one in a long line of similar incidents and thus is the same old shit.I just wanted to contribute something to this thread. :(


As far as the Cheney allegations, I agree in as much as I don't believe them when they (his office) say they did this for scientific reasons; I think they did it for political reasons. IMO the administration isn't concerned one way or the other with climate change on a scientific level, it's merely a political football as far as they're concerned.

07-09-08, 10:15 AM
I just wanted to contribute something to this thread. :(


As far as the Cheney allegations, I agree in as much as I don't believe them when they (his office) say they did this for scientific reasons; I think they did it for political reasons. IMO the administration isn't concerned one way or the other with climate change on a scientific level, it's merely a political football as far as they're concerned.
I think it's more of a hot potato for them than a political football. ;)

07-09-08, 10:18 AM
Metaphor smackdown! :grunt:

07-09-08, 10:20 AM
It's a political debate instead of a scientific debate - just as energy production is a political debate instead of a scientific one.

Too bad.

07-09-08, 02:04 PM
Folks, the first confirmed case of "Climate Change Delusion" has been documented in Australia. But columnist Andrew Bolt correctly points out that many of the politicians are far more deluded than this unfortunate 17 year old. And their delusions are far more threatening to us.


Climate change delusion a real problem

by Andrew Bolt

July 09, 2008 12:00am
Article from: Herald Sun

PSYCHIATRISTS have detected the first case of "climate change delusion" - and they haven't even yet got to Kevin Rudd and his global warming guru.
Writing in the Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, Joshua Wolf and Robert Salo of our Royal Children's Hospital say this delusion was a "previously unreported phenomenon".

"A 17-year-old man was referred to the inpatient psychiatric unit at Royal Children's Hospital Melbourne with an eight-month history of depressed mood . . . He also . . . had visions of apocalyptic events."

(So have Alarmist of the Year Tim Flannery, Profit of Doom Al Gore and Sir Richard Brazen, but I digress.)

"The patient had also developed the belief that, due to climate change, his own water consumption could lead within days to the deaths of millions of people through exhaustion of water supplies."

But never mind the poor boy, who became too terrified even to drink. What's scarier is that people in charge of our Government seem to suffer from this "climate change delusion", too.

Here is Prime Minister Kevin Rudd yesterday, with his own apocalyptic vision: "If we do not begin reducing the nation's levels of carbon pollution, Australia's economy will face more frequent and severe droughts, less water, reduced food production and devastation of areas such as the Great Barrier Reef and Kakadu wetlands."

And here is a senior Sydney Morning Herald journalist aghast at the horrors described in the report on global warming released on Friday by Rudd's guru, Professor Ross Garnaut: "Australians must pay more for petrol, food and energy or ultimately face a rising death toll . . ."

Wow. Pay more for food or die. Is that Rudd's next campaign slogan?

Of course, we can laugh at this - and must - but the price for such folly may soon be your job, or at least your cash.

Rudd and Garnaut want to scare you into backing their plan to force people who produce everything from petrol to coal-fired electricity, from steel to soft drinks, to pay for licences to emit carbon dioxide - the gas they think is heating the world to hell.

The cost of those licences, totalling in the billions, will then be passed on to you through higher bills for petrol, power, food, housing, air travel and anything else that uses lots of gassy power. In some countries they're even planning to tax farting cows, so there's no end to the ways you can be stung.

Rudd hopes this pain will make you switch to expensive but less gassy alternatives, and - hey presto - the world's temperature will then fall, just like it's actually done since the day Al Gore released An Inconvenient Truth.

But you'll have spotted already the big flaw in Rudd's mad plan - one that confirms he and Garnaut really do have delusions.

The truth is Australia on its own emits less than 1.5 per cent of the world's carbon dioxide. Any savings we make will make no real difference, given that China (now the biggest emitter) and India (the fourth) are booming so fast that they alone will pump out 42 per cent of the world's greenhouse gases by 2030.

Indeed, so fast are the world's emissions growing - by 3.1 per cent a year thanks mostly to these two giants - that the 20 per cent cuts Rudd demands of Australians by 2020 would be swallowed up in just 28 days. That's how little our multi-billions of dollars in sacrifices will matter.

And that's why Rudd's claim that we'll be ruined if we don't cut Australia's gases is a lie. To be blunt.

Ask Rudd's guru. Garnaut on Friday admitted any cuts we make will be useless unless they inspire other countries to do the same - especially China and India: "Only a global agreement has any prospect of reducing risks of dangerous climate change to acceptable levels."

So almost everything depends on China and India copying us. But the chances of that? A big, round zero.

A year ago China released its own global warming strategy - its own Garnaut report - which bluntly refused to cut its total emissions.

Said Ma Kai, head of China's powerful State Council: "China does not commit to any quantified emissions-reduction commitments . . . our efforts to fight climate change must not come at the expense of economic growth."

In fact, we had to get used to more gas from China, not less: "It is quite inevitable that during this (industrialisation) stage, China's energy consumption and CO2 emissions will be quite high."

Last month, India likewise issued its National Action Plan on Climate Change, and also rejected Rudd-style cuts.

The plan's authors, the Prime Minister's Council on Climate Change, said India would rather save its people from poverty than global warming, and would not cut growth to cut gases.

"It is obvious that India needs to substantially increase its per capita energy consumption to provide a minimally acceptable level of wellbeing to its people."

The plan's only real promise was in fact a threat: "India is determined that its per capita greenhouse gas emissions will at no point exceed that of developed countries."

Gee, thanks. That, of course, means India won't stop its per capita emissions (now at 1.02 tonnes) from growing until they match those of countries such as the US (now 20 tonnes). Given it has one billion people, that's a promise to gas the world like it's never been gassed before.

So is this our death warrant? Should this news have you seeing apocalyptic visions, too?

Well, no. What makes the Indian report so interesting is that unlike our Ross Garnaut, who just accepted the word of those scientists wailing we faced doom, the Indian experts went to the trouble to check what the climate was actually doing and why.

Their conclusion? They couldn't actually find anything bad in India that was caused by man-made warming: "No firm link between the documented (climate) changes described below and warming due to anthropogenic climate change has yet been established."

In fact, they couldn't find much change in the climate at all.

Yes, India's surface temperature over a century had inched up by 0.4 degrees, but there had been no change in trends for large-scale droughts and floods, or rain: "The observed monsoon rainfall at the all-India level does not show any significant trend . . ."

It even dismissed the panic Al Gore helped to whip up about melting Himalayan glaciers: "While recession of some glaciers has occurred in some Himalayan regions in recent years, the trend is not consistent across the entire mountain chain. It is, accordingly, too early to establish long-term trends, or their causation, in respect of which there are several hypotheses."

Nor was that the only sign that India's Council on Climate Change had kept its cool while our Rudd and Garnaut lost theirs.

For example, the Indians rightly insisted nuclear power had to be part of any real plan to cut emissions. Rudd and Garnaut won't even discuss it.

The Indians also pointed out that no feasible technology to trap and bury the gasses of coal-fired power stations had yet been developed "and there are serious questions about the cost as well (as) permanence of the CO2 storage repositories".

Rudd and Garnaut, however, keep offering this dream to make us think our power stations can survive their emissions trading scheme, when state governments warn they may not.

In every case the Indians are pragmatic where Rudd and Garnaut are having delusions - delusions about an apocalypse, about cutting gases without going nuclear, about saving power stations they'll instead drive broke.

And there's that delusion on which their whole plan is built - that India and China will follow our sacrifice by cutting their throats, too.

So psychiatrists are treating a 17-year-old tipped over the edge by global warming fearmongers?

Pray that their next patients will be two men whose own delusions threaten to drive our whole economy over the edge as well.

07-09-08, 09:17 PM
This article isn't really anything all that new. Lawrence Solomon has written columns about Wikipedia's editors constantly keeping the Wiki free of CAGW skepticism before and I have posted them. What is remarkable is that the CBS News website posted this new column.

Someone will probably be fired. ;)


Wikipropaganda On Global Warming
National Review: Wikipedia Is A Stunning Example Of How The Propaganda Machine Works
July 8, 2008

(National Review Online) This column was written by Lawrence Solomon.

Ever wonder how Al Gore, the United Nations, and company continue to get away with their claim of a “scientific consensus” confirming their doomsday view of global warming? Look no farther than Wikipedia for a stunning example of how the global-warming propaganda machine works.

As you (or your kids) probably know, Wikipedia is now the most widely used and influential reference source on the Internet and therefore in the world, with more than 50 million unique visitors a month.

In theory Wikipedia is a “people’s encyclopedia” written and edited by the people who read it - anyone with an Internet connection. So on controversial topics, one might expect to see a broad range of opinion.

Not on global warming. On global warming we get consensus, Gore-style: a consensus forged by censorship, intimidation, and deceit.

I first noticed this when I entered a correction to a Wikipedia page on the work of Naomi Oreskes, author of the now-infamous paper, published in the prestigious journal Science, claiming to have exhaustively reviewed the scientific literature and found not one single article dissenting from the alarmist version of global warming.

Of course Oreskes’s conclusions were absurd, and have been widely ridiculed. I myself have profiled dozens of truly world-eminent scientists whose work casts doubt on the Gore-U.N. version of global warming. Following the references in my book The Deniers, one can find hundreds of refereed papers that cast doubt on some aspect of the Gore/U.N. case, and that only scratches the surface.

Naturally I was surprised to read on Wikipedia that Oreskes’s work had been vindicated and that, for instance, one of her most thorough critics, British scientist and publisher Bennie Peiser, not only had been discredited but had grudgingly conceded Oreskes was right.

I checked with Peiser, who said he had done no such thing. I then corrected the Wikipedia entry, and advised Peiser that I had done so.

Peiser wrote back saying he couldn’t see my corrections on the Wikipedia page. I made the changes again, and this time confirmed that the changes had been saved. But then, in a twinkle, they were gone again. I made other changes. And others. They all disappeared shortly after they were made.

Turns out that on Wikipedia some folks are more equal than others. Kim Dabelstein Petersen is a Wikipedia “editor” who seems to devote a large part of his life to editing reams and reams of Wikipedia pages to pump the assertions of global-warming alarmists and deprecate or make disappear the arguments of skeptics.

I soon found others who had the same experience: They would try to squeeze in any dissent, or even correct an obvious slander against a dissenter, and Petersen or some other censor would immediately snuff them out.

Now Petersen is merely a Wikipedia “editor.” Holding the far more prestigious and powerful position of “administrator” is William Connolley. Connolley is a software engineer and sometime climatologist (he used to hold a job in the British Antarctic Survey), as well as a serial (but so far unsuccessful) office seeker for England’s Green party.

And yet by virtue of his power at Wikipedia, Connolley, a ruthless enforcer of the doomsday consensus, may be the world’s most influential person in the global warming debate after Al Gore. Connolley routinely uses his editorial clout to tear down scientists of great accomplishment such as Fred Singer, the first director of the U.S. National Weather Satellite Service and a scientist with dazzling achievements. Under Connolley’s supervision, Wikipedia relentlessly smears Singer as a kook who believes in Martians and a hack in the pay of the oil industry.

Wikipedia is full of rules that editors are supposed to follow, and it has a code of civility. Those rules and codes don’t apply to Connolley, or to those he favors.

“Peisers crap shouldn’t be in here,” Connolley wrote several weeks ago, in berating a Wikipedian colleague during an “edit war,” as they’re called. Trumping Wikipedia’s stated rules, Connelly used his authority to ensure Wikipedia readers saw only what he wanted them to see. Any reference, anywhere among Wikipedia’s 2.5 million English-language pages, that casts doubt on the consequences of climate change will be bent to Connolley’s bidding.

Nor are Wikipedia’s ideological biases limited to global warming. As an environmentalist I find myself with allies and adversaries on both sides of the aisle, Left and Right. But there is no doubt where Wikipedia stands: firmly on the Left. Try out Wikipedia’s entries on say, Roe v. Wade or Intelligent Design, and you will see that Wikipedia is the people’s encyclopedia only if those people are not conservatives.

07-10-08, 08:04 AM

Cleaner skies explain surprise rate of warming

09 July 2008

From New Scientist Print Edition

GOODBYE air pollution and smoky chimneys, hello brighter days. That's been the trend in Europe for the past three decades - but unfortunately cleaning up the skies has allowed more of the sun's rays to pierce the atmosphere, contributing to at least half the warming that has occurred.

Since 1980, average air temperatures in Europe have risen 1 °C: much more than expected from greenhouse-gas warming alone. Christian Ruckstuhl of the Institute for Atmospheric and Climate Science in Switzerland and colleagues took aerosol concentrations from six locations in northern Europe, measured between 1986 and 2005, and compared them with solar-radiation measurements over the same period. Aerosol concentrations dropped by up to 60 per cent over the 29-year period, while solar radiation rose by around 1 watt per square metre (Geophysical Research Letters, DOI: 10.1029/2008GL034228). "The decrease in aerosols probably accounts for at least half of the warming over Europe in the last 30 years," says Rolf Philipona, a co-author of the study at MeteoSwiss, Switzerland's national weather service.

The latest climate models are built on the assumption that aerosols have their biggest influence by seeding natural clouds, which reflect sunlight. However, the team found that radiation dropped only slightly on cloudy days, suggesting that the main impact of aerosols is to block sunlight directly.

From issue 2663 of New Scientist magazine, 09 July 2008, page 16

Tuan Jim
07-10-08, 09:33 PM
First off, I love the fact that despite all the crazy talk from the G8 conference about 50% cuts and all that - it's totally non-binding and not set in any formal document or anything. We don't have to worry about the economy going down the drain yet.

Secondly, (I'm too lazy to go looking for the article right now), but the WaPo had a feature earlier this week about how Mt. Shasta is the only mtn in the N. Hemisphere (or the west or something) that currently features "growing" glaciers - vs. receding. Guess what the culprit is for that miraculous occurrence -- you got it: global warming. There's more moist pacific air, so the glaciers are growing....

movielib - still haven't gotten that idea written out yet. Sooner or later hopefully.

07-11-08, 07:06 AM
First off, I love the fact that despite all the crazy talk from the G8 conference about 50% cuts and all that - it's totally non-binding and not set in any formal document or anything. We don't have to worry about the economy going down the drain yet.

I think the news is better than could have been hoped for. The disagreement between the developed nations which require that the developing nations take part in economic hari-kari and the developing nations which sensibly decline to do any such thing portend no meaningful international agreements, at least for the near future.


The G8's crafty climate-change strategy
Posted: July 10, 2008, 8:39 PM

The G8 has strengthened unity within itself, and shifted climate-change pressure on to its competitors

By Benny Peiser

The G8 summit on climate policy, and its categorical rejection by China, India and the other Group of Five developing countries has reinforced the post-Kyoto standoff. Rather than breaking the climate deadlock, as Tony Blair had advocated in the run-up to the Hokkaido summit, the G8 agreement has deepened the existing gulf within the international community with no sign in sight of a possible solution.

It seems increasingly unlikely that the fundamental conflict between the developed nations and the emerging economies of the developing world about collective climate targets can be resolved any time soon. The time has come for policy makers around the world to ponder whether a new global climate agreement no longer based on mandatory and legally binding emissions targets is a viable compromise.

In the interminable game of climate poker that is the post-Kyoto negotiation circuit, this year’s G8 summit in Japan has pulled off a remarkable feat. Instead of the customary wrangle between Europe and the U.S., a unified West submitted a strategic challenge to the rest of the world. In one of the shrewdest gambits of international climate diplomacy, the leaders of the Western world offered steep emissions cuts — under the condition that China, India and other developing countries take part in the global effort.
Predictably, China, India and other major economies fear that the G8’s crafty climate strategy is backing them into a precarious corner. Reiterating their position that it was the responsibility of rich nations to cut CO2 emissions, they emphasized that poor and developing nations had no option but to reject any proposal that would inevitably undermine the economic growth that is necessary to pull hundreds of millions of people out of poverty.

Nevertheless, by conditioning their offer on the concrete and verifiable participation of developing nations, the Group of Eight has strengthened accord and unity within itself. At the same time, it is further shifting the weight of international pressure and expectation on to its economic rivals and competitors from the developing world.

One of the most notable achievements of the G8’s new climate strategy is the fact that the U.S., Europe, Japan and Russia appear to be singing from the same hymn sheet. The EU and Russia are now supporting President Bush’s persistent demand that any new climate deal include China and India. By bringing Europe on board a united platform, the G8 has managed to divide the green movement, which is rapidly losing its traditional allies within European governments. Western governments have thus begun to unshackle their post-Kyoto policy-making from the influence and public pressure of environmental campaign groups.

The change in the climate of opinion can perhaps best be detected in European and North American media reporting. Much of the news outlets favourably welcomed the G8 agreement. Its rejection by China and India, however, was often portrayed as a major obstacle for future progress. In contrast, the habitual objections by environmental campaigners and climate scientists looked rather trivial if not out of tune. In its strategic realignment, the G8 has been aided, if not forced, by a significant economic downturn that is gradually changing the world of international climate policy. A mighty storm is brewing, taking aim at fragile policies that were developed during much better times. In its wake, it is overturning green policies as fresh pressures and new priorities emerge that are significantly shifting political agendas and voter behaviour.

Climate policies and green taxes that were considered trendy only a few years ago, have turned into major liabilities for many governments — so much so that approval ratings of environmental schemes and policies have begun to dive. Britain’s Prime Minister Gordon Brown and Australian PM Kevin Rudd are both struggling to fend off growing revolts over green taxes and carbon trading schemes that are driving away Labour’s core voters and threaten to bring down their governments. Both centre-left leaders are under mounting pressure to delay or scrap altogether some of their most costly climate policies.

There is now growing concern among environmental campaigners that the momentum for radical climate policies may have been lost, at least for the foreseeable future, if not for good. These fears are fully justified. In the absence of sustained temperature rises and in light of deepening economic problems, the green enthusiasm of Western governments and opposition parties appears to have been suspended, at least for the time being. After years of heating up precariously, the issue of climate change seems destined for a gradual but manifest cooling-off period.

As long as global temperatures remain flat (or even go into reverse), governments and policy makers will increasingly regard costly climate policies as economic risks and political millstones that should be evaded as much as possible – both at national and international levels. Accordingly, it is no longer in the interest of European and other G8 governments to endorse a new climate deal that would further burden their struggling economies unilaterally.

Given the economic crisis and stagnant temperatures, and in view of the intractable climate deadlock, it seems prudent to ponder alternatives to a Kyoto-style treaty. A first step in this direction would be an acknowledgement that such an accord is now extremely unlikely to be attainable at next year’s UN climate conference in Copenhagen. What is more, governments would be well advised to prepare the public for a global climate agreement devoid of mandatory targets that have become emissions impossible.

07-11-08, 07:26 AM
James Hansen doesn't want to debate a knowledgeable opponent.


NASA climatologist 'not interested' in defending own views on global warming at W&M
Nick Fitzgerald | Editor in Chief (VIO)
Last Updated:7/2/08 Section: News

Dr. James Hansen, NASA climatologist and major figure in the debate on global climate change, recently refused a paid invitation to speak and debate at the College about his positions on global warming. Braum Katz ('09) -- secretary for the College's Department of Student Rights, director of the newly-created William and Mary Society for Academic Freedom and Diversity and Informer writer -- invited Mr. Hansen via e-mail.

Mr. Hansen was one of the first individuals to discuss the potential impact of global climate change, speaking before Congress in 1988 to that effect. He has been in the media spotlight recently, saying that oil executives who are spreading "misinformation" about global warming should be tried for "crimes against humanity and nature," as reported by various media outlets. He likened oil executives denying global warming to tobacco executives who denied the link between cancer and the use of their products. Mr. Hansen recently told The Associated Press that as far as global climate change is concerned, "this is the last chance."

The invitation to speak at the College came after Mr. Katz contacted Dr. Patrick Michaels, who is a vocal global warming skeptic, former American Association of State Climatologists-designated climatologist at the University of Virginia and also a fellow at the Cato Institute. Mr. Michaels said he would be interested in speaking and debating at William and Mary about his oft-criticized positions denying the significance of global climate change. His UVA faculty Web site reads, "My research…leads me to believe that the next decade will see the emergence of a paradigm of 'robust earth,' as opposed to the fashionable 'fragility' concept….It is entirely possible that human influence on the atmosphere is not necessarily deleterious and that it is simply another component of the dynamic planet."

Mr. Katz, as director of the new student group hoping to expand academic and intellectual diversity, was looking to create a debate between Messrs. Hansen and Michaels, giving both the opportunity to defend and explain their views in a public forum.

"For this fall," Mr. Katz wrote in his e-mail to Mr. Hansen, "we are hoping to host a debate on global climate change and its implications. Patrick Michaels has agreed to come, and my organization would like you to come and debate Dr. Michaels in Williamsburg. The date is very flexible, and we can tailor the day of the debate completely to your schedule. We will be able to pay for your travel expenses and offer you an honorarium for your time. Please let me know if you would be interested."

Mr. Hansen's response was, simply, "not interested."

His reply -- devoid of any salutation, punctuation, capitalization or signature -- came an hour after Mr. Katz sent his original e-mail.

"I was truly taken aback by Dr. Hansen's refusal to debate Dr. Michaels," said Mr. Katz. "I gave Dr. Hansen a blank check to come to the College, and still he refused. Dr. Hansen's suggestion that oil executives who advance global warming skepticism be tried for 'crimes against humanity' and subsequent refusal to debate one of the most prominent academic skeptics is suspicious and unfortunate, to say the least. I still continue to hope that Dr. Hansen realizes the error of his decision and does eventually decide to debate Dr. Michaels. The William and Mary community deserves an open and honest debate about the implications of climate change."

Mr. Hansen did not respond to repeated attempts by The Informer to contact him for comment.
I am surprised by Mr. Katz's surprise that Hansen would refuse to debate. Just like Al Gore and any others of the hosts of alarmists, he knows his side owns upwards of 90% of the world press and he can do his 1400+ interviews with no fear of being challenged. He also knows that Michaels, one of the most knowledgeable of skeptics, would demolish him, particularly in areas he has gone even way beyond where the alarmist IPCC has gone.

And no doubt Hansen is too busy "adjusting" past temperatures down and present temperatures upward, working on getting energy company executives prosecuted, deriding those such as Michaels who disagree with him as "jesters" and struggling against the "muzzle" of the Bush administration.

The only surprising thing about Hansen's refusal to debate is that he even answered the request at all.

07-11-08, 05:07 PM
Last year you may remember that the Supreme Court in a 5-4 decision said the EPA was authorized to regulate greenhouse gases (the EPA had said it wasn't authorized). However, the SC did not say they must regulate them. Many environmentalists have erroneously claimed the EPA is violating the SC decision.

Today the EPA issued a report saying why they still do not believe they should be doing the regulating.


July 11, 2008, 2:58 pm
EPA: Let Congress Regulate Emissions—We Can’t
Posted by Keith Johnson

The Bush administration says it can’t regulate greenhouse-gas emissions — but somebody else is welcome to try.

The Environmental Protection Agency’s administrator, Stephen Johnson, took the unprecedented step today of releasing the agency’s 1,000-plus page product of brainstorming on how best to tackle GHG emissions, replete with input from other federal agencies. The EPA review was spurred by a 2007 Supreme Court case ordering the EPA to figure out how to regulate GHG emissions under the existing Clean Air Act. Mr. Johnson told reporters on a conference call:

“The Clean Air Act is ill-suited for the task of regulating greenhouse-gas emissions…it would take decades, with a convoluted set of regulations…if the U.S. is serious [about tackling GHG emissions] the Clean Air Act is the wrong tool for the job.”

So what is the right tool? Congress, says the EPA.

The EPA boss said Congress must draft comprehensive legislation that avoids the regulatory and litigation pitfalls of trying to regulate greenhouse-gas emissions on a case-by-case basis from within the EPA. Using the Clean Air Act, Mr. Johnson said, “would be like walking across the country rather than taking a fast and secure supersonic jet.”

The White House went further, taking issue with most of the document’s conclusions, except the EPA’s conclusion that using existing laws would be a regulatory nightmare. The WSJ reports today:

“There is strong disagreement with many of the legal, analytical, economic, science and policy interpretations in the draft. These letters do reflect agreement with you that the Clean Air Act is a deeply flawed and unsuitable vehicle for reducing greenhouse gas emissions,” [administrator of the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs Susan] Dudley wrote in the letter, dated Thursday and addressed to the EPA’s administrator, Stephen Johnson.

Mr. Johnson might have a point about the perils of litigation and the piecemeal approach to regulating emissions. Friday, a federal court struck down a signature piece of the Bush administration’s environmental policy—a requirement for power plants to cut emissions of pollutants like sulfur-dioxide and nitrogen-dioxide. Power companies had sued to overturn the law.

That’s exactly the risk facing the EPA if it tried to regulate GHG emissions, Mr. Johnson said, since regulation would “have a profound effect on every sector of the economy.”
Expect the usual screaming and misrepresentations from the enviros.

07-11-08, 05:09 PM
On the court case referred to in the penultimate paragraph of my previous post:


Court rejects Bush's signature air pollution rule

By MATT APUZZO – 5 hours ago

WASHINGTON (AP) — A federal appeals court unanimously struck down a signature component of President Bush's clean air policies Friday, dealing a blow to environmental groups and likely delaying further action until the next administration.

The regulation, known as the as the Clean Air Interstate Rule, required 28 mostly Eastern states to reduce smog-forming and soot-producing emissions that can travel long distances in the wind. The Environmental Protection Agency predicted it would prevent about 17,000 premature deaths a year.

Electric power producers challenged the regulation and President Bush found himself with unusual allies.

"This the rare case where environmental groups went to court alongside the Bush administration," said Frank O'Donnell, president of Clean Air Watch, a group that has criticized other Bush administration policies.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit ruled Friday that the EPA overstepped its authority by instituting the rule. The court cited "more than several fatal flaws" and scrapped the entire regulation.

"This is without a doubt the worst news of the year when it comes to air pollution," O'Donnell said.

The EPA said the rule would dramatically reduce sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxide emissions, saving up to $100 billion in health benefits. Besides the reduction in premature deaths, the EPA also said the rule would have prevented millions of lost work and school days and tens of thousands of nonfatal heart attacks.

The Bush administration can appeal the decision but environmental groups called for Congress and the EPA to quickly begin working on a new law or replacement regulation.

07-13-08, 09:46 AM
Like NASA GISS's James Hansen, Britain's Hadley Centre is a CAGW cheerleader and doesn't quite know what to do with the fact that it's been getting cooler. It's more subtle than Hansen with the arbitrary "adjustments" he perpetrates to change history but it is also less than totally honest and forthright.


How the Hadley Centre spins the data on non-warming

Paul MacRae, July 11, 2008

Mystification is the process of explaining away what might otherwise be evident. –John Berger, Ways of Seeing

Britain’s Hadley Centre for Climate Prediction and Research is in a spot of bother at the moment.

On the one hand, the Hadley Centre is a firm believer in the hypothesis that humans are the main cause of global warming and that we’re heading toward catastrophe. It even devotes several of its web pages to waving a nagging finger at those foolish enough or unprincipled enough to believe otherwise.

On the other hand, the Hadley Centre, as part of the British Meteorological Office and one of the world’s foremost climate-monitoring sites, is also churning out data showing that the planet isn’t warming at the moment, and hasn’t for the past 10 years or so. Clearly, increasing human carbon emissions aren’t causing the expected warming.

What to do?

As principled scientists, the Hadley staff can’t cook the books so the temperature figures fit the hypothesis, although at least one other major climate centre is doing its best to keep its figures matching the hypothesis.1 On the other hand, if the general public got the idea that maybe the planet wasn’t warming after all, despite what it’s been told so often, the people might rebel against punitive carbon taxes and go back to their materialist-loving ways.

The Hadley Centre’s solution is a combination of spin-doctoring and let’s hope nobody notices.

You find the spin in its finger-wagging admonitions that we mustn’t take this non-warming trend at all seriously. Just temporary. Planet’s still warming. Move along; nothing to see here.

So, in its webpage on Climate Facts #1, it says: “There is indisputable evidence from observations that the Earth is warming.” 2 This is hardly controversial; even the pesky warming skeptics who annoy the Hadley Centre so much agree on the earth is, overall, on a warming trend. But, just to make sure we’re clear so far: the earth is in an overall warming trend (interglacial) right now and would be whether humans were a factor or not.
Humans causing ‘most of the warming’?

Hadley goes on: “Concentrations of CO2, created largely by the burning of fossil fuels, are now much higher, and increasing at a much faster rate, than at any time in the last 600,000 years. Because CO2 is a greenhouse gas, the increased concentrations have contributed to the recent warming and probably most of the warming over the last 50 years” (italics added).

So, just so we’re clear: humans are the primary (Al Gore likes to use the term “principal”) cause of global warming - that’s what’s meant by causing “most of the warming.”

But then, Climate Fact #3 tells us: “Earth’s climate is complex and influenced by many things, particularly changes in its orbit, volcanic eruptions, and changes in the energy emitted from the Sun. It is well known that the world has experienced warm or cold periods in the past without any interference from humans” (italics added).

So, just to be clear: humans are causing “most of the warming” at the moment, but not warming in the past, and there are many other causes of warming as well, all natural, and all, one would think, a lot more powerful — solar orbit changes, volcanoes, variations in solar energy — than anything humans could throw at the planet.

The site goes on: “In recent ice ages, natural changes in the climate, such as those due to orbit changes, led to cooling of the climate system. This caused a fall in CO2 concentrations which weakened the greenhouse effect and amplified the cooling. Now the link between temperature and CO2 is working in the opposite direction. Human-induced increases in CO2 are driving the greenhouse effect and amplifying the recent warming” (italics added).
Driving or amplifying? They aren’t the same thing

We’ve got two processes here, described by two different verbs: driving and amplifying. Even though the planet is warming naturally (Fact #1), which would naturally tend to increase CO2 levels anyway, human-emitted CO2 is “driving” the greenhouse effect.

This is an amazing feat when you consider that human-added concentrations of CO2 are only about five per cent of natural carbon emissions every year from factors like rotting vegetation, volcanoes, outgassing from the oceans, and the like. And amazing considering that 90 to 95 per cent of the greenhouse effect is produced by water vapor, not CO2.

Never mind. For the Hadley Centre, five per cent of a trace gas like carbon dioxide (CO2 is only 380 parts per million in the atmosphere, to which human emissions add about 10 ppm every five years) is “driving” the greenhouse gas system.

Then the Centre backtracks a bit and says we humans are “amplifying,” rather than “driving,” the recent warming. How much are we “amplifying” natural warming? Presumably about five per cent. Is an amplification of five per cent enough to produce “most of the warming” we’ve experienced over the past 30 years? It’s unlikely, especially considering that the planet warmed about the same amount from 1850-1940, when human carbon emissions were still relatively low.

Furthermore, in the 1850s the planet came out of more than 400 years of cooling known as the Little Ice Age. Before that, during the Medieval Warm Period (900-1350), global temperatures were a degree or two Celsius higher than today’s. Temperatures were warmer about 2,000 years ago (the Roman Warm Period) and about 3,500 years ago (the Minoan Warm Period).

Natural warming occurs every 1,000 years or so

This means that over the past 5,000 years there’s been a major warming and cooling cycle every 1,000 years or so. The current warming, a millennium after the Medieval Warm Period, is right on track as part of that natural cycle.

In other words, the planet may be going about its natural warming at the moment, with a bit of “amplification” - five per cent? - from humans. “Amplifying” doesn’t mean the same as “driving” the climate, but the Hadley Centre doesn’t make this fine distinction.

Then there’s that pesky decade of warming. To counter this inconvenient truth, Hadley tells us in its webpage on Climate Facts #2 that “the rise in global surface temperature has averaged more than 0.15 °C per decade since the mid-1970s. Warming has been unprecedented in at least the last 50 years, and the 17 warmest years have all occurred in the last 20 years. This does not mean that next year will necessarily be warmer than last year, but the long-term trend is for rising temperatures.”

Translating this into understandable English, the Centre is saying that just because it’s not warming now doesn’t mean it hasn’t warmed in the past, which is hardly news. Therefore, it concludes, because it’s been warm in the past three decades, the planet is going to be warmer in the future.

It was warm from 1850 to 1940, too, but in 1940 the planet cooled for 30 years. However, this cooling can’t happen again, according to the Hadley Centre. How does it know? Because its computers tell it so — the same computers that couldn’t predict the recent 10 years of non-warming.

But why isn’t the planet warming now? After all, humans are “driving” the climate, aren’t we? Well, not quite. As the Hadley Centre tells us in Fact #2: “The recent slight slowing of the warming is due to a shift towards more-frequent La Niña conditions in the Pacific since 1998. These bring cool water up from the depths of the Pacific Ocean, cooling global temperatures” (italics added; incidentally, “slight slowing of the warming” is an unsual way of describing “no warming”).

So the oceans are driving this non-warming through an La Nina (a cold current), overriding our human-caused carbon dioxide. Maybe humans aren’t as powerful a “driving” force as the Hadley Centre would like us to believe after all. And if humans aren’t the main cause of cooling, maybe we’re not the main cause of warming, either.

How Hadley chart buries non-warming

Finally, again, the Hadley Centre is stuck with a bunch of numbers that show the planet isn’t warming, despite its computers’ predictions that human CO2 will warm things up. It can’t sweep this data under the rug so it does the next best thing: it produces a graph that makes the lack of warming barely discernible. Here’s the chart the Hadley Centre uses to illustrate temperatures (actually, temperature anomalies) over the last 157 years:


The current flat-lined warming shows as a tiny, horizontal tail on the right side of the chart. If you get out a magnifying glass, you’ll see that, yes, the blue temperature line flattens out after the year 2000. I’ve searched the Hadley site and can’t find any graphic that shows the last 10 years in detail, although the numbers are there as a long list.

However, on his site, Anthony Watts has produced a graph of the past 10 years, using the Hadley Centre’s numbers.3 Here’s what that graph looks like (I’ve added a red line to show average temperatures).


Why hasn’t the Hadley Centre produced a graphic like this? Isn’t an average temperature that hasn’t gone up in 10 years worthy of public attention? Shouldn’t even a temporary pause in warming be good news? Why bury that news in a tiny fillip at the end of a very long-term chart? Why work so hard to hide the truth?

Because the truth doesn’t agree with the Centre’s hypothesis that humans are the “driving” force behind climate. In short, it’s an embarrassment, and therefore to be underplayed as much as possible.

I argue that much of what the public is told by “consensus” climate science about global warming is misleading, exaggerated, or plain wrong.

The Hadley Centre’s spin effort isn’t exaggerating the data (far from it), nor is it plain wrong — the true figures are on the site. But the Centre is doing everything it can to mislead the public in hopes that the planet will start warming again before the peasants figure out that, maybe, the “consensus” climate science prophets are, in fact, plain wrong.

07-13-08, 10:01 PM
What to do about rising gas prices:

Drive slower. Try to increase your fuel milage by at least 25%. For example, normally I get about 25 MPG in my car. If i drive slower, I can get 30 MPG easily. Doing so lowers the cost per mile of driving to a price around $3.75 a gallon. This allows me to drive the same amount of miles I did previously before the jump in gas prices, because I reduced the rate at which I consumed resources, so therefore at the same amount of time the total amount of resources I was consuming. And to do it, I didn't need to sacrifice driving for work, school, errands, and recreational activity. I also didn't need to buy a hybrid car.

Driving slower doesn't impair me severely. Every week I drive about 300 Miles, almost a full tank of gas for me. At 80 miles per hour, that averages out to about 3 hours, 45 minutes of travel time every week. However, averaging 60 miles per hour, it comes to 5 hours of travel time, on average, every week. So 1 hour and 15 minutes every week does little to hamper my productivity. It simply means driving slower on the freeway, and accelerating slower.

07-13-08, 10:14 PM
Stark raving mad. This guy is dumb enough to be in Congress. Wait a second, he is.


Global Warming Led to ‘Black Hawk Down,’ Congressman Says
Friday, July 11, 2008

On the Spot (CNSNews.com) – A top Democrat told high school students gathered at the U.S. Capitol Thursday that climate change caused Hurricane Katrina and the conflict in Darfur, which led to the “black hawk down” battle between U.S. troops and Somali rebels.

Rep. Edward Markey (D-Mass.), chairman of the House (Select) Energy Independence and Global Warming Committee, also equated the drive for global warming legislation with the drive for women’s suffrage in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

But one global warming expert from the conservative Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) told Cybercast News Service that such a remark reveals Markey’s ignorance on the subject of global warming.

“In Somalia back in 1993, climate change, according to 11 three- and four-star generals, resulted in a drought which led to famine,” said Markey.

“That famine translated to international aid we sent in to Somalia, which then led to the U.S. having to send in forces to separate all the groups that were fighting over the aid, which led to Black Hawk Down. There was this scene where we have all of our American troops under fire because they have been put into the middle of this terrible situation,” he added.

Markey was referring to the battle of Mogadishu in 1993, when 18 members of a U.S. military team were killed in a helicopter crash and a resulting firefight. The battle was made famous by a 2001 Academy Award-winning film, “Black Hawk Down.”

Markey was speaking to 25 students from the World Wildlife Fund's Allianz Southeast Climate Witness Program. The students had come to the Capitol to brief members of Congress on the risks of global warming. The students were from the Gulf States.

But Myron Ebell, director of Energy and Global Warming Policy at CEI, told Cybercast News Service that Markey’s remarks reveal his ignorance about the science of global warming.

“Yes, that part of the world is subject to drought at times, but it has very little to do with global warming,” said Ebell. “It is subject to drought whether the global average temperature is going up, down, or staying the same. To say you know the conflict was caused by global warming is to show how really ignorant you are of the scientific issues involved.”

The students who testified at the event, most of whom had lived in New Orleans prior to Hurricane Katrina in August 2005, described the difficulties they faced after the storm and blamed global warming for the disaster.

“Katrina woke me up and made me pay attention,” said 17-year-old Danielle Wold from Harvey, La. “One of the worst disasters in history made me want to do something. In 100 years, New Orleans could just be another Atlantis.”

Fifteen-year-old Stephen Bordes from New Orleans called on lawmakers to do something to end global warming. “Cutting carbon emissions is mainly in your hands since you pass the laws,” he said. ‘You basically control climate change. We should have changed yesterday, but it’s too late to change yesterday so we should start now.”

Bordes said that he thinks the warming of the atmosphere could lead to a situation in which his home, which is near the superdome in New Orleans, could become permanently inundated with water.

Markey also told the students that there no longer exists any debate about whether or not disasters like Katrina are caused by climate change.

“There now is no question that this harm is being caused by human activity,” said Markey. “It’s warming up the planet and melting the glaciers. There is an underwater heat wave going on. The waters get warmer and warmer and that intensifies the storms and creates even greater havoc when those storms reach land.”

“The planet is running a fever. It’s heating up but there is no emergency rooms for planets,” he said. “The worst consequences affect the planet -- not only New Orleans -- but the whole planet.

“The same thing is true by the way with Darfur,” Markey added. “Darfur is really about water. This is an issue which really goes to the heart of the incredible impact that climate change is having upon our planet. “

But Ebell said that droughts in Darfur are probably not an effect of global warming. “In that region, droughts have been going on for hundreds of years and before human beings started to burn coal and gas,” he said. “They will continue because of precipitation patterns. Again, I think Chairman Markey has revealed the extent of his ignorance on this issue.”

Markey finished his talk by comparing the debate against global warming to the 20th century fight for women suffrage. “Back 100 years ago, women rose up and said we want the right to vote, and they were successful,” he said. “Now, you are like the green generation and you are rising up and saying we must ensure the planet does not suffer the worst consequences of climate change.”

DVD Polizei
07-13-08, 11:23 PM
I'm beginning to notice a trend. It appears our own nation is following in the footsteps of mysticism and voo-doo logic, normally only seen in 3rd World nations.

What's dangerous, is Global Warming will go away in the future, and politicians and scientists will find some other "issue" to argue, using the same innuendo and superstition.

07-14-08, 06:05 PM
Lawrence Solomon summarizes why we are not "running out" of energy:


Abundant energy will power future growth
Posted: July 12, 2008, 2:46 PM by Lawrence Solomon

Up! Up! Up! The world is consuming more and more energy and, as if by miracle, the amount left to consume grows ever higher. Never before in human history has energy been accessible in greater abundance and in more regions, never before has mankind had more energy options and faced a brighter energy future.

Take oil, the scarcest of the major energy commodities. In the Americas, proven oil reserves have increased from 170 billion barrels to 180 billion barrels over the last two decades, according to the 2008 Statistical World Review from British Petroleum. In Europe and Eurasia, proven oil reserves almost doubled, from 76 billion barrels to 144. Africa's proven oil reserves did double, from 58 billion barrels to 117. Even the Asia Pacific region, where China and India are reputed to be sucking up everything in sight, has increased its proven reserves. And the Middle East, the gas tank of the world, shows no sign of slowing down -- its reserves soared by almost 200 billion barrels, from a whopping 567 billion barrels to a super-whopping 756.

Bottom line for the world: an incredible 36% increase in oil reserves during the two decades that saw the greatest globalization-spurred oil consumption in the history of mankind. And that doesn't include the 152 billion barrels in proven oil reserves obtainable from Canada's tar sands. Is there any reason to doubt that the next two decades won't build on the steady growth of the last two?

These oil reserves aren't the end of it. These figures -- for the year ending December 2006 -- represent oil that's not only known to be available, but also economic at 2006 prices using 2006 technology. Since prices have soared in the last year, and technology has improved too, BP's annual assessment for the 2007 year will show greater proven oil reserves still.

But this is still not the end of it. Unconventional oil reserves are now in play. In 2005, the Rand Corporation estimated that the oil shale in America's Green River Formation, which covers portions of Colorado, Utah and Wyoming, contains 1.5 to 1.8 trillion barrels of oil, with as much as 1.1 trillion barrels of oil recoverable, an amount comparable to the reserves of four Saudi Arabias. Oil shale becomes recoverable at $95 a barrel, it determined. With oil now trading at $140 a barrel, oil shale exploitation is now very much economic. Then there's Canada's tar sands, with its even greater potential--estimates of the total reserves that may be available top two trillion barrels, or eight Saudi Arabias.

This is still not the end to it. Most of the oil we know about lies in the well travelled portions of the globe. But most of the world remains unexplored -- the interiors of Africa, Asia and South America have seen relatively little oil exploration. Oil exploration in the oceans, too, is in its infancy. For all practical purposes, mankind has limitless oil supplies available to it. The story is similar for natural gas and coal, the other major nonrenewable sources of energy. And for nuclear power. And for the renewables.

The amount of solar power landing on Earth could supply our current needs 10,000 times over. This potential will soon start to be realized on a large scale thanks to breakthroughs in the U. S. and Israel that have dramatically brought down the cost of solar technology. Wind also represents an inexhaustible resource, as seen in a 2005 NASA-funded study at Stanford University of viable wind sites worldwide. It found that wind power could satisfy global demand seven times over, assuming a realistic capture rate of 20%. Some European countries already meet a significant portion of their power needs with wind.

The world is awash with exploitable energy, both renewable and non-renewable. Availability is not at issue and never has been.

The only issue is the cost --both economic and environmental --at which it can be exploited.

Nuclear currently fails on economic grounds. But most fossil fuel technologies don't need subsidies and soon, neither will most renewable technologies. That leaves the environment as the chief determinant of what energy we use, and where we use it. Thanks to environmental awareness and the high energy prices we now face, energy production has become ever cleaner, safer, and more efficient, giving us more meaningful options than ever before.

Whatever the outcome, whatever energy forms we ultimately rely on, the table is diverse and bountiful, allowing the world economy to grow large and to grow cleanly. And it will have been largely set by environmentalists.
Solomon, author of The Deniers, went in search of a few dissenters from CAGW and found a ton of them (and is still finding them for his occasional columns; he has said he now realizes there are way too many topnotch scientists who are skeptics for him ever be able to interview them all). It completely changed his views on global warming. He is an environmentalist who has jettisoned CAGW.

Solomon, for reasons I don't know, continues to oppose nuclear power. His peculiar statement above about its being too expensive fails to note that it is expensive only because of the legal roadblocks enviros have been able to erect. I think nuclear, free of such irrationally excessive obstacles (some, of course, are justified) would probably be cheaper than any other major power source. I can forgive him this as he has been excellent in exposing the "consensus" for the nonsense it is.

07-14-08, 06:15 PM
Another nonexistent skeptic, Dutch meteorologist Hendrik Tennekes:


July 14, 2008
My Position on Climate Change By Hendrik Tennekes

The so-called scientific basis of the climate problem is within my professional competence as a meteorologist. It is my professional opinion that there is no evidence at all for catastrophic global warming. It is likely that global temperatures will rise a little, much as IPCC predicts, but there is a growing body of evidence that the errant behavior of the Sun may cause some cooling in the foreseeable future.

It is also my professional opinion that the severely limited predictive capacity of the natural sciences is no adequate basis for globally orchestrated mitigation efforts concerning greenhouse gases. Any political basis for global mitigation efforts, such as a cap-and trade system for fossil fuel consumption, is outside my professional competence. Opportunities for local and regional mitigation and adaptation projects, however, are plentiful and promising. Societies have a long track record on adaptation and mitigation on local and regional scales, often with considerable success.

The political dichotomy about climate change is fueled by gross exaggerations and simplifications on both sides of the fence. There is no evidence for a catastrophic sea level rise or an irreversible loss of Greenland’s ice cap. Other human interferences with the climate system are ignored or dismissed. Political interest in the causes of local and regional climate change seems to be minimal, though local and regional climates may change considerably under human impact, even if the globally averaged temperature remains unchanged. I wish I could join those who believe that global climate change is of catastrophic proportions, but my personal interpretation of professional integrity forbids me. I refuse to join the crowd.

On occasion I tend to dream of a strong and fair World Government, which would have the power to curtail the negative impacts of the unbridled globalization of free enterprise. However, I know this is an illusion, because nation states will not yield their sovereignty as long as there is no imminent danger of global collapse. Also, I am not at all confident that democracy would prevail. However, since I believe that no climate collapse is occurring, I cannot join those who use this imaginary threat to advance their political goals.

We should keep in mind that local and regional climates respond not only to greenhouse gases, but primarily to changing land-use patterns. Civilization has a long history of dealing with unintended regional climate change caused by large-scale deforestation. The present deforestation in the Amazon basin and in Indonesia threatens to repeat the many mistakes made in the past. The incessant emphasis on CO2 and its effects on globally averaged temperatures leads many to ignore the fact that changes in the distribution of precipitation are far more threatening to agriculture and biosphere than any slight temperature changes. In precisely that part of the problem, however, the predictive capabilities of global climate science are practically nonexistent.

Here in the Netherlands, where I happen to live high and dry, some forty feet above sea level, the threat of catastrophic sea level rise has anchored itself in the public mind. This threat is imaginary, too. I concur with Dr. Marcel Stive, a civil engineering professor at Delft University and member of a blue-ribbon panel that advises Holland’s government on the maintenance of our coastal defense system. In a recent interview with the alumni magazine Delft Integral, Dr. Stive said:

“Fortunately, the time rate of climate change is slow compared to the life span of the defense structures along our coast. There is enough time for adaptation. We should monitor the situation carefully, but up to now climate change does not cause severe problems for our coastal defense system. IPCC has given lower estimates for the expected sea level rise in four successive reports.”

This statement deserves to be generalized. I venture this:

“Fortunately, the time rate of climate change is slow compared to the rapid evolution of our institutions and societies. There is sufficient time for adaptation. We should monitor the situation both globally and locally, but up to now global climate change does not cause severe problems requiring immediate emission reductions. Successive IPCC reports have presented no scientific basis for dire warnings concerning climate collapse. Local and regional problems with shorter time scales deserve priority. They can be managed professionally, just as the Dutch seem to do.”

This is where I stand.

07-14-08, 06:34 PM
Cherry picking silliness:


Russian researchers 'rescued from melting ice floe'

11 hours ago

MOSCOW (AFP) — Twenty Russian scientists have been rescued from their camp on an ice floe in the Arctic that was melting faster than expected, a spokesman for the expedition told AFP on Monday.

"The 20 polar researchers and their two dogs climbed on board the 'Mikhail Somov'" research ship late Sunday, said Sergei Bolyasnikov, a spokesman for Russia's Arctic and Antarctic Institute.

"All scientific programmes at the station have been stopped," he added.

The ship travelled with an ice-breaker to rescue the researchers from camp North Pole 35, which was set up last September on an ice floe that has shrunk from six kilometres (3.8 miles) to just 600 metres in length.

The scientists are now due to return to the Russian Arctic port of Murmansk.

Scientists report that global warming means the thawing season is coming earlier in the Arctic and that the ice cover is retreating, making expeditions on ice floes increasingly perilous.
It is, of course, not mentioned that the ice has melting more slowly than last year and that there is almost a million square kilometers more of it right now than at the same time last year. The negative anomaly is not unusual for recent decades.

I suspect that the Russians were either simply unlucky and their ice floe drifted a little farther south than they expected or just into a warmer than average area. I can see no basis for blaming this on global warming.

07-14-08, 06:50 PM
I knew this looked familiar. From the junk science recycle bin:

Global Warming Leads To Increase In Kidney Stone Cases

Global Warming Leads To Increase In Kidney Stone Cases
July 14, 2008

According to a new study released on Monday, global warming is leading to a rise in the number of cases of kidney stones.

The new study was published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, and focuses on medical findings which show that people who live in warmer regions have a higher rate of developing kidney stones compared to people who live in other regions.

The science behind this is that sweating removes fluid from the body, increasing salt concentration in urine.

This can cause a rise in the number of cases of kidney stones.

By the year 2050, global warming may lead to a huge spike in kidney stone cases in many spots across the country, including the Midwest.

These effects could be harmful to the health of people, and expensive as well, putting a strain on the medical system


And never mind that it's getting cooler and may very well be cooler in 2050 than it is today. And even if it's warmer, the one or two tenths of a degree C are probably quite unlikely to make the midwest into the south.

07-14-08, 07:20 PM
Funny, I never had a kindney stone when I lived in Arizona. But when I moved to a much cooler climate, San Francisco, I got them.

Why don't they just tell people to drink more water? Oh, that's right. There won't be any. Or will it be covering up our homes from the melted ice. I get so confused...

07-15-08, 07:15 AM
Barely more than a year ago the press was all agog that Lake Superior's water level had sunk to its lowest level in 81 years. Excerpts from an example:


The case of the disappearing Great Lake
Updated 6/14/2007 10:07 AM
By Dennis Cauchon, USA TODAY

BARAGA, Mich. — "Where did the water go?" asks Ted Shalifor, manager of a marina and campground on Lake Superior's Chippewa Indian Reservation.

The water on Lake Superior is so low that he couldn't put his docks in the water this year. Where he used to see water, he now sees sandbars.

Lake Superior, the world's largest freshwater lake, has dropped to its lowest level in 81 years. The water is 20 inches below average and a foot lower than just a year ago...
The water had also warmed:

...Researchers at the University of Minnesota and elsewhere study whether Lake Superior's low water levels are a result of global warming. The average water temperature of Lake Superior has risen 4.5 degrees Fahrenheit since 1979...
Well now things have changes drastically:


Lake Superior still chilly
By Karl Bohnak
Monday, July 14, 2008 at 8:08 p.m.

It's mid-summer and Lake Superior is still chilly. Mid-lake buoy temperatures usually warm up quickly from early July on. So far as of Monday, water temperatures at these buoys are barely above spring-time levels, running from the upper 30s at the northern and northeastern buoys to the low 40s at the western buoy. Over the last several years, readings ran about ten degrees or so higher at mid-July. There are likely a couple of reasons for the cold water. First, it was a chilly spring and the summer through mid-July has been close to average. Secondly over the last week, unseasonably powerful low-pressure areas have brought strong winds that have stirred up the lake, allowing upwelling of colder water to the surface. I suspect with light winds and warmer air this week surface water temperatures will begin rising quickly.

If you are a lake watcher, you have probably noticed that the water level has come up, too. As of this past Sunday, the level of Lake Superior is 601.7 feet. That's 1.3 feet above the average of last year and less than five inches below the long-term average. Lake Superior's level is primarily influenced by precipitation in its watershed and there has been abundant snow and rain over the last six-to-nine months.

Both the water level and water temperatures are much different than last year. This CNN story written just over a year ago, told of disturbingly low water levels and unprecedented warm water temperatures. The specter of global warming was raised in explaining these phenomenons in this story. A more level-headed report here showed how before the days of sophisticated computer models, lake observers knew there were cyclical rises and falls in the level of Lake Superior.

This year, I suspect we will not hear much about Lake Superior water temperatures or levels. "Average" or "normal" isn't newsworthy.
The water level is way up from last year and not all that much below average now. The temperature is way down.

If we accept that the news about Lake Superior last year was "bad" (as the MSM portrayed it), I am sure we will soon see the MSM publishing stories about the "good" news this year and admitting that their lamentations about the lake's imminent death were premature.

Sure. :lol:

07-15-08, 07:59 AM
If we accept that the news about Lake Superior last year was "bad" (as the MSM portrayed it), I am sure we will soon see the MSM publishing stories about the "good" news this year and admitting that their lamentations about the lake's imminent death were premature.

Sure. :lol:

:lol: Yeah, just as soon as air traffic control clears the flying pig for takeoff roll.

07-15-08, 08:26 AM
It is amazing how any anomaly, deviation, or variance in our climate, health, energy issues, etc., can be attributed to global warming or climate change simply by saying it is -- it kinda reminds me of a defense being presented before a judge in court just to see if it will pass the "laugh test." -ohbfrank-

07-15-08, 09:28 AM
A complete list of things caused by global warming (http://www.numberwatch.co.uk/warmlist.htm)

Forgive me if this has been posted before. A friend recently e-mailed me the link and I found it laughably depressing (in that people buy this ridiculousness). Apparently, it hasn't been updated to include Black Hawk Down.

07-15-08, 09:48 AM
A complete list of things caused by global warming (http://www.numberwatch.co.uk/warmlist.htm)

Forgive me if this has been posted before. A friend recently e-mailed me the link and I found it laughably depressing (in that people buy this ridiculousness). Apparently, it hasn't been updated to include Black Hawk Down.
:lol: Yes, I post it periodically. I'm sure Black Hawk Down will be added.

07-15-08, 09:57 AM
Water level in other Great Lakes is up also:


Big Lake level jumps in June
Posted by Jeff Alexander | The Muskegon Chronicle July 15, 2008 09:40AM

A series of storms that dumped torrential rains on the Great Lakes basin in June contributed to a dramatic rise in Lake Michigan's water level.

Water levels in Lake Michigan and Lake Huron, which are technically one lake, rose six inches last month -- triple the average rise in June, according to U.S. Army Corps of Engineers data. The amount of water that flowed into lakes Michigan-Huron last month from precipitation and storm water runoff was 30 percent above average.

"We've had three months in a row with above average precipitation. That, coupled with a snowy winter, has caused the lakes to rise much quicker than they usually do," said Keith Kompoltowicz, a meteorologist at the Corps of Engineers' Detroit office.

Lake Michigan's water level is was 16 inches below its long-term average at the end of June, but six inches higher than it was in June 2007, according to Corps data. According to the Corps' six month forecast, the lake could rise more before beginning its seasonal drop later this summer.

It all depends on the weather.

Kompoltowicz said a combination of weather patterns tracking over the Midwest several times this year, and absorbing moisture from the Gulf of Mexico, delivered huge quantities of precipitation to the Great Lakes basin.

"The amount of moisture coming from the Gulf of Mexico this year has been impressive," he said. "We've seen a number of torrential downpours in all of the Great Lakes this year."

Storms have caused severe flooding in Ludington and other parts of the state, washing out roads and forcing some people out of their homes.

Higher lake levels benefit the shipping industry and recreational boaters but at the expense of beaches. Every one inch rise in lake levels equates to 10 inches of lost beach, according to government data.

Great Lakes water levels usually peak in July and sink to the lowest levels of the year in February. Lake Michigan's water level has been rising steadily since last December, Kompoltowicz said.

The change comes after years of concern about sinking lake levels. Low lake levels last year forced the Corps of Engineers and numerous marinas to dredge to keep navigation channels open for freighters and pleasure boats.

Lake Michigan, which dropped 44 inches since 1998 and came within five inches of its record low in December, began to rise in January.

Lake Superior, which supplies one-third of the water in lakes Michigan and Huron, hit a record low last year before rebounding this year.

Sinking lake levels prompted the International Joint Commission, which mediates border issues with Canada, to launch a $15 million study last year of water levels in lakes Michigan, Huron, Superior and Erie. Researchers are studying whether human intervention is needed to stabilize lake levels over the next 40 years.

One focus of the study is whether dredging in the St. Clair River over the past century has created an abnormally large drain hole that caused water levels in lakes Michigan and Huron to plummet in recent years.

A privately funded study has claimed dredging widened and deepened the St. Clair River, lowering water levels in lakes Michigan and Huron by about 15 inches. The IJC is scheduled to release its assessment of that situation next June.

A local scientist who serves on an advisory committee overseeing the IJC's study said the current trend demonstrates nature's dominant role in determining lake levels.

"Whatever humans do to the system, Mother Nature will have a strong say in the final outcome," said Alan Steinman, director of Grand Valley State University's Annis Water Resources Institute in Muskegon.

Steinman said one of the key aspects of the IJC study is to assess how global climate change could affect lake levels through 2050.

"Water levels will continue to rise and fall throughout the Great Lakes, but if climate warming is resulting in less ice cover and increased evaporation from the lakes, the long-term pattern for water level will inevitably be a downward trend," he said.
Funny how Steinman attributes the ups and downs to natural causes and possibly the dredging but has to get in that "global climate change" could play a part. He must have an eye on future grants. ;)

BTW, I couldn't find another link to this story.

07-15-08, 10:35 AM
I posted this back in February:


Here is a review of the study:


New Evidence for a Planetary Temperature Regulator Reference
Kleypas, J.A., Danabasoglu, G. and Lough, J.M. 2008. Potential role of the ocean thermostat in determining regional differences in coral reef bleaching events. Geophysical Research Letters 35: 10.1029/2007GL032257.

What was done
The authors looked for evidence of an "ocean thermostat" by analyzing patterns of sea surface temperature (SST) increases in the tropics over the past five decades, focusing their attention on the western Pacific warm pool (WPWP), because, in their words, "this is a region where maximum SSTs are thought to be limited by negative feedbacks," as described in the writings of Reginald Newell (1979) -- who they cite -- and who in collaboration with Thomas Dopplick employed what he had learned of the subject to demonstrate -- nearly three decades ago -- that the degree of CO2-induced global warming predicted by the climate models of that day was far greater (and is greater still today) than what is allowed by the real world (Newell and Dopplick, 1979), as is further described in the historical narrative of Idso (1982).

What was learned
Kleypas et al. say their analysis indicates that "the warmest parts of the WPWP have warmed less than elsewhere in the tropical oceans," which fact "supports the existence of thermostat mechanisms that act to depress warming beyond certain temperature thresholds." In addition, they report that "coral reefs within or near the WPWP have had fewer reported bleaching events relative to reefs in other regions," which is also indicative of the existence of an upper-limiting temperature above which SSTs typically do not rise, presumably because of the "kicking-in" of the oceanic thermostat when they approach 30°C in the region the three researchers describe as "the center of coral reef biodiversity," which likely merits that description because of the effectiveness of the hypothesized thermostat.

What it means
These recent findings tend to support the thesis put forward years ago by both Newell and Dopplick (1979) and Idso (1980, 1982, 1989), i.e., that rather than the earth possessing some thermal "tipping point" above which global warming dramatically accelerates, the planet's climatic system is organized so as to do just the opposite and greatly attenuate warming above a certain level.


Idso, S.B. 1980. The climatological significance of a doubling of earth's atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration. Science 207: 1462-1463.

Idso, S.B. 1982. Carbon Dioxide: Friend or Foe? IBR Press, Tempe, Arizona, USA.

Idso, S.B. 1989. Carbon Dioxide and Global Change: Earth in Transition. IBR Press, Tempe, Arizona, USA.

Newell, R.E. 1979. Climate and the ocean. American Scientist 67: 405-416.

Newell, R.E. and Dopplick, T.G. 1979. Questions concerning the possible influence of anthropogenic CO2 on atmospheric temperature. Journal of Applied Meteorology 18: 822-825.
Reviewed 16 July 2008
So nothing new, but I wanted to reiterate how many studies and how much news there has been about corals not being in any particular trouble because coral panic has been back in the news recently. As always, all studies that show the panic is unjustified are ignored.

07-15-08, 10:50 AM
Alert the Russian icebreakers. Another global warming nut is going to need to be rescued.


Explorer bids to kayak to 'melting' North Pole

33 minutes ago

LONDON (AFP) — A British explorer unveiled plans Tuesday to kayak all the way to the North Pole to expose just how quickly the ice cap is melting.

But renowned extreme swimmer Lewis Gordon Pugh, dubbed the human polar bear, is hoping his bid will fail -- and not because of the lethal conditions or a walrus attack.

The climate change campaigner said the mission ought to be impossible -- but some scientists predict that due to global warming, this year might be the first when someone could do so.

Pugh is due to paddle out from Norway's Svalbard islands on August 29, heading 1,200 kilometres (some 750 miles) north across the Arctic Ocean to the North Pole, kayaking up cracks in the ice.

The journey should take a minimum of two weeks.

"I'm going to try and get all the way to the North Pole to show the world what is happening," the 38-year-old told AFP after launching his Polar Defense Project expedition on the River Thames in London.

"It shouldn't be possible. But this might be the year that it could be. I hope I can't go all the way.

"Failure would equal success in this expedition," he said.

Pugh said he had spent the last six years in the Arctic, during which time he had "seen it change dramatically.

"What upsets me is that we could see this coming. Our leaders have known about this for a long time and they have dithered and failed to take action.

"We now must insist they take action because when the Arctic melts it will affect each and every one of us."

Environmental campaigners warn a melting polar ice cap could cause rising sea levels that would threaten some low-lying island nations and endanger low-lying coastal areas.

Should he reach the North Pole, Pugh will raise 192 national flags to highlight how melting ice caps affects all countries.

He will be backed up by a support boat but the risks are nonetheless high.

"I'm on my own in a single kayak. If I fall in the water -- and I will on many occasions -- it's serious," he said.

"It's the wind chill which hammers you. That cocktail of the air temperature, the wind and the waves is lethal."

Going in without full protection "would be suicide", he said.

Cape Town and Cambridge-educated Pugh has given up the life of a maritime lawyer to campaign for protection of the marine environment.

He became the first person to swim the length of Britain's River Thames, the waters between the Maldive Islands and at the North Pole to highlight climate change.

He was also the first person to complete long distance swims in every ocean.

Although polar bears would want to eat him, said Pugh, he can outpace them in his kayak. However, he will go out of his way not to mix it with walruses.

"They can be very dangerous. They wouldn't respond much to a good knock with a paddle. They'll hurt you," he said.

Pugh wants legislation such as the Antarctic Treaty, which froze territorial claims and prevented the exploitation of resources, to be duplicated in a similar treaty for the Arctic.

"I love the Arctic so much. I worry about it. It is the last beautiful, pristine place on Earth.

"We need to protect it, not because of polar bears but because our very survival depends on it. Not for our grandchildren; it's happening so quickly we need to protect it to save ourselves."
At least he says he wants to fail (although I suspect that's a bit of disingenuousness).

07-15-08, 11:20 AM
A complete list of things caused by global warming (http://www.numberwatch.co.uk/warmlist.htm)

Forgive me if this has been posted before. A friend recently e-mailed me the link and I found it laughably depressing (in that people buy this ridiculousness). Apparently, it hasn't been updated to include Black Hawk Down.

The Loch Ness monster is a casaulty of CAGW?? NOOOOOOO! What its next, the unicorns and leprechauns?

On a more serious (and positive note), I witnessed my first sign that perhaps the science is beginning to win out. I caught a rather popular local radio talk show yesterday and they had a climate expert on to talk about the EPA and CAGW. This show is typically very liberal, (but the usual host had a guest running the show) and believe it or not, the expert was a skeptic! One of those rare and invisible skeptics that we are so often told are things of fairy tales actually gave a very coherent and logical explanation of the EPA's decision and why CAGW in general is not supported by the scientific evidence. Even better was the fact that of the several callers with questions, not a single one of them disagreed with what was being said! Madness I tell you. I thought I was in Bizarro world, but perhaps the tide is turning...

07-16-08, 04:51 PM
The report: it's hot!


Global Warming: Top 10, Again

5 hours ago

WASHINGTON (AP) — Earth scored another Top 10 finish in June — climate wise.

It was the eighth warmest June on record, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reported Wednesday.

And the first six months of the year were the ninth warmest since record keeping began in 1880, NOAA's National Climatic Data Center reported.

The planets average temperature for June was 60.8 degrees Fahrenheit, 0.9 degrees warmer than average for the month.

For the January to June period, the combined global land and ocean surface temperature was 57.1 degrees, which is 0.8 degrees above the 20th century mean.
The reality: maybe not!


Wednesday, July 16, 2008
Latest NOAA Press Release in Total Disagreement with NASA Satellite

By Joseph S. D’Aleo, CCM, Fellow of the AMS

It was the eighth warmest June on record for the globe, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reported Wednesday in the 129 years since records were begun in 1880. And the first six months of the year were the ninth warmest since record keeping began in 1880, NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center reported. The planets average temperature for June was 60.8 degrees Fahrenheit, 0.9 degrees warmer than average for the month.

DON’T BELIEVE A WORD OF IT. Just a few days ago, the University of Alabama, Hunstville came out with their global assessment and they reported the 22nd warmest in the 30 years of recrods in their data base (in other words the 9th coldest). In fact, their global mean was actually below the average (base period 1979-1998) with a value of -0.11C (-0.19F). The other NASA satellite source, RSS had June as the 13th coldest out of the last 30 years


The global data bases suffer from major station dropout after 1990 (number dropped from 6000 to less than 2000) and a ten fold increase in the number of missing months in the stations that report. There is serious problems with their algorithms for assessing whether a station is urban or rural and adjusting for local land use changes. There are major siting issues, many of which Anthony Watts, Steve McIntyre and Roger Pielke Sr. have shown have not been properly adjusted for. An old version of a document describing these issues can be found here. Please note the NERON networks plans of NOAA morphed into the Climate Reference Network, a relatively small number (110 if fully implemented) properly sited instrument locations that should provide a better tracking of at least US climate in the future but will not resolve the historical discrepancies.

Time has come for a major independent investigation of the data sets, compilation methodology and adjustment practices (and records) for the global data sets of NOAA, NASA and Hadley. Steve McIntyre and Anthony Watts are doing their best finding problems but Steve has run into many roadblocks suggesting folks have something to hide. Meanwhile we will trust only the UAH and RSS.

Try this to see for yourself how bad the global station data is. Go to this site (GISS - same as GHCN), scroll down to the map and click on any region. You will see stations listed - notice the highly variable reporting periods. Start clicking on stations. You will get plots. But before you move to other stations go to the bottom and click on “Download monthly data as text”. You will see for many/most stations numerous “999.9"s meaning missing data. How do you come up with an annual averages when one to multiple months are missing? That is like making beef stew but without the beef. I was told that in many cases the data is available (Environment Canada tells us they have their data we show as missing) but that NOAA and NASA is making no efforts to go out and get it. Our slogan should be after every NOAA press release “Where is the beef?”
Totally fucked up land-based system: it's hot!

Much more accurate satellite system: it's not!

Which one gets press?

07-17-08, 08:00 AM
The report: it's hot!


The reality: maybe not!


Totally fucked up land-based system: it's hot!

Much more accurate satellite system: it's not!

Which one gets press?
That is funny. It has to have been one of the least hot Junes in Eastern Nebraska in the last 6 years.

07-17-08, 09:00 AM
New Zealand climate scientist Vincent Gray has been both an IPCC expert reviewer since the IPCC began and a vocal critic. He has also been a member of the Royal Society of New Zealand, that country's leading science organization.

The Royal Society just published a statement on climate change which Gray has vehemently attacked. In fact, he is so irate that he has resigned from the Society in protest. Here are his comments (quotes from the Royal Society's statement are bolded; format on the link is pretty messy; I've tried to clean up some of it):



Veteran Wellington climate consultant, Dr Vincent Gray, expert reviewer of all four IPCC Assessment Reports, explains why he has resigned his longtime membership of the Royal Society of New Zealand in protest at the inaccuracies in a report on climate change issued on 12 July by the Society's Climate Committee.


Dr Vincent Gray


As an Expert Reviewer for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change for eighteen years, that is to say, from the very beginning. I have submitted thousands of comments to all of the Reports. My comments on the Fourth IPCC Report, all 1,898 of them, are to be found at IPCC (2007) and my opinions of the IPCC are in Gray (2008b)

I am therefore very familiar with the arguments presented by the IPCC, many of which have now been copied by the Royal Society of New Zealand, and the responses to them.

I will first comment on the Introduction

to make absolutely clear what the evidence is for climate change and anthropogenic (human-induced) causes.

The climate has always changed and always will. No evidence whatsoever for a human contribution to the climate is given in their following statement.

Their Summary is as follows:

The globe is warming

This statement is a lie. The globe is currently cooling. According to the CSSP Report (Karl et al 2007), there are currently nine authorities currently involved in providing a dataset of monthly global temperature anomalies. They are

NOAA’s National Climate Data Center (NCDC, GHCN-COADS)
NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS)
Climatic Research Unit of the University of East Anglia (HadCRUT2v)
NOAA radiosonde network , (RATPAC)
Hadley Centre Radiosonde Network (HadAT2)
University of Alabama Lower Troposphere TLT MSU (UAH )
Remote Sensing Systems Lower Troposphere TLT MSU (RSS)
National Center for Environmental Protection Reanalysis (NCEP50)
European Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecasts Reanalysis (ERA40)

Eight of these authorities agree that the globe is currently cooling. Only GISS disagrees. [Note by movielib: Due to Hansen's magical "adjustments"]

because of increasing greenhouse gas emissions

No evidence is presented to justify this conclusion. There are “projections” of computer models but these are not predictions, they are merely the results of assumptions made in the model. No “projected” result has ever been successfully related to an actual change in the climate.

Measurements show that greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere are well above levels seen for many thousands of years.

This statement is a lie. 90,000 measurements published in peer-reviewed journals since 1850, some by Nobel Prize-winners, have been suppressed by the IPCC because they do not agree with this statement. (Beck 2007). Stability of carbon dioxide in ice cores thousands of years old is questionable. (Jaworowski 2007). Recent measurements of carbon dioxide are confined only to exceptional circumstances over the ocean, and do not include measurements over land. (Manning et al 1994).

Further global climate changes are predicted,

This is another lie. Computer models of the climate have never been shown to be capable of prediction, and the IPCC recognises this by using the term “projections” for the output from the models. This statement refers only to greenhouse gas concentrations anyway, not to any other “global climate change”

with impacts expected to become more costly as time progresses.

“Expected” by whom?. By “experts” whose finance depends on favourable “expectations”. On what basis?. Purely on the opinions of these “experts”.

Reducing future impacts of climate change will require substantial reductions of greenhouse gas emissions.

Again, mere opinion, without any evidence that this “requirement” will work.

fostering evidence-based scientific debate

There is no “debate”. This is a one-sided statement which does not permit discussion or disagreement in public. At least I can debate it on the Internet.

We hope this statement makes a useful contribution to public understanding of climate change.

I hope that my comments will make a similar useful contribution.


There has been an overall upward trend in global surface temperature since the beginning of the 20th Century.

Typically, from the nine global temperature records, you choose the least reliable, the surface temperature record, which suffers from numerous problems and biases, such as poor and unrepresentative sampling, poor quality control, and urban and land-change influences. The least reliable section was at the beginning of the 20th century, when presumed influences of greenhouse gases were negligible..

The surface record has been highly irregular and it has included several upwards and downward “trends”, none of which could be called “overall”. A downward “trend” was shown from 1940 to 1976, apparently uninfluenced by increased greenhouse gas emissions, It is difficult to explain why the greenhouse gases had a sudden reversal of influence for the upwards “trend” from 1976 to 1998. After 1998 the temperature has fallen, and there was a “trend” downwards from 2002 to the present day, unnoticed by this statement.

Most of the observed global warming over the past 50 years is very likely to be due to increases in greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere.

“the past 50 years” has been dishonestly chosen to eliminate the most reliable observed global temperature records, the radiosondes, (from 1958) and the MSU satellites (from 1978) for exclusive consideration. This record actually shows “global cooling” from 1958 to 1976, so it is only the bit in the middle of the record, 1976 to 1998, which showed “global warming”; considered “very likely” to have been “due to increases of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere”. It is strange, that the greenhouse gases suddenly stopped operating from 1958 to 1976 and from 1998 to 2008.

As before, the opinion that this strange behaviour was “very likely” comes entirely from “experts” with a conflict of interest.

Greenhouse gases warm the lower atmosphere by allowing sunlight to reach the Earth?s surface but trapping some of the infrared radiation emitted by the Earth. Human activities have increased the concentrations of carbon dioxide, methaneand nitrous oxide since the mid-1700s. More than half of the carbon dioxide concentration increase has occurred since 1970.

This may be true, but there is no evidence that there have been any harmful effects as a result.

Human activities have also increased concentrations of aerosols (small ?air pollution? particles) in the atmosphere. These may have partially offset the heating effect of the greenhouse gases by scattering some sunlight back to space.

This may also be true, but it merely shows that net effects can be very complicated. Since more aerosols are emitted in the Northern Hemisphere than in the Southern Hemisphere, and over land rather than sea, one might expect greater cooling in the North and over the sea. In reality, it is the South and the oceans where temperature rises have been less.

Natural factors also cause climate variations. Climate has always varied, over timescales of decades, centuries and millennia. Until recently these variations have had only natural causes
? including changes in the tilt of the Earth?s axis, the shape of theEarth?s orbit, the energy output from the sun, dust from volcanic emissions, and heat exchanges between the atmosphere and the ocean (such as El Niño). This natural variability still occurs in addition to the human influences. Thus while the overall decade-to-century temperature trend is upwards, individual years can still be warmer or cooler than previous years.

Here you display your prejudices. When the temperature goes up it is “very likely” due to human greenhouse emissions, It is only due to natural causes when it goes down, and great efforts must be made to eliminate these by averaging over the year, the decade, the century, in the hope that they can be covered up.

Further global changes are predicted. Many impacts are expected to be more costly as time progresses. Even if the concentrations of all greenhouse gases and aerosols were held constant at year 2000 levels, a further warming trend would be expected for at least several decades, due mainly to the slow response of the oceans.

Here we go again. Climate models cannot make “predictions”, but the IPCC soothsayers have no limit to what can be “expected” without any evidence.

Additional increases in greenhouse gas concentrations, and resulting changes in climate, will occur over coming decades unless concerted international action is taken to substantially reduce emissions. Impacts will vary regionally but, aggregated and discounted to the present, they are very likely to impose net annual economic costs which will increase over time as global temperatures increase.

The end is nigh! Prepare to meet thy doom!!! Unsubstantiated nonsense.

*Measurements show that:* * Atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide have increased by 35%, 150% and 18% respectively since around 1750^1 <#1> .

So what?

Air temperature (averaged over the globe’s surface) has risen through the past 100 years. The linear warming trend from 1906 to 20052 was 0.74°C [0.56 to 0.92°C]3.

Only if you believe the unreliable record all that way back. But why does it matter?

Globally-averaged sea level rose by 17 cm [12 to 22 cm] during the 20th century.

Highly unlikely. When tide-gauges are kept level with GPS the rise disappears.

Average northern hemisphere temperatures during the second half of the 20th century were very likely warmer than during any other 50-year period in the last 500 years and likely the warmest in the past 1300 years.

A dishonest trick obtained by comparing unreliable and unrepresentative “proxy” measurements with weather station data influenced by urban heating.

For the globally-averaged surface air temperature, 2005 and 1998 were the two warmest years in the instrumental temperature record (i.e. since 1850. Twelve of the thirteen years during the period 1995-2007 are the warmest since 1850).

The poor accuracy and undoubted bias from urban heating make these comparisons worthless. For information on the undoubted influence of urban heating, see Gray (200) and Gray (2008a). For a recent statistical demonstration of socio-economic bias see McKitrick and Michaels (2007)

Mountain glaciers and snow cover have declined on average in both hemispheres. Spring peak river flows have been occurring 1 to 2 weeks earlier in basins with important seasonal snow cover in North America and northern Eurasia (based on observations over the period 1936 – 2000), due to earlier warming-driven snow melt.Arctic sea-ice summer extent has decreased at an average rate of 7.4% [5.0% to 9.8%] per decade since 1978.

There has been a global temperature cycle which had a peak value in around 1950, a trough around 2975 and another peak in 2000. It has been particularly prominent inn the Arctic where it is reinforced by the Atlantic Decadal oscillation. The recent fall in temperature is likely to reverse these effects. Some of these changes go back to the previous ice age and some are due to changes in local vegetation or precipitation.

Observations since 1961 show the average temperature of the global ocean has increased to depths of at least 3000m, with decadal fluctuations superimposed on this long-term trend.

The observations show a periodic behaviour related to the ocean oscillations. The measurements are highly inaccurate and have been revised twice already.

The ocean has become more acidic because of uptake of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

Parts of the ocean emit carbon dioxide now and are thus more acidic than others. Organisms are already adapted to both extreme changes and any increase in carbon dioxide will only change the proportions. Evolution should easily handle any changes in ratio.

For New Zealand the air temperature shows substantial year to year fluctuations, but shows a clear increase over time, with a linear trend in the country-wide average of 0.9°C between 1908 and 2006. The average sea level rise over the twentieth century was 16±2 cm. The number of frost days has decreased since the 1950s at many New Zealand sites.

There was no overall change in temperature in New Zealand since 1950 and the previous figures are dubious. The sea level all over New Zealand has levelled out since GPS devices enabled accurate levelling. Doubtless it is possible to select those “many” sites that justify your prejudice.

Present global atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide far exceed pre-industrial values dating back at least 650,000 years.

Only if you suppress the information documented by Beck (2007) and Jaworowski (2007)

The global increases in carbon dioxide concentration since pre-industrial times are due primarily to fossil fuel use and land use change.
About 2/3rds of these anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions since 1750 are estimated to have come from fossil fuel burning and about 1/3 from land use change. About 45% of this carbon dioxide has remained in the atmosphere.

If it is true why should I care?

The combined influence on the energy balance of the Earth-atmosphere system of all anthropogenic emissions between 1750 and 2006 is likely to be at least 5 times larger than the influence of changes in solar output over the same period.

No part of the earth ever has an “energy balance” and there is no reason to suppose that such a balance exists. The Sun has much more influence than estimated here because you ignore feedback effects such as the influence on clouds and the influence of cosmic rays. Current changes in sunspot numbers are already having more effect than you are prepares to admit.

Very energetic volcanic eruptions (such as that of Mt Pinatubo in 1991) can place small particles high in the atmosphere, blocking sunlight and leading to cooling for a few years.

You usually ignore these effects when you derive “trends”.

Increasing atmospheric temperatures lead to an overall increase of water vapour in the atmosphere. Water vapour is itself a strong greenhouse gas, so this amplifies the warming effect of the increase in anthropogenic greenhouse gases.

You usually ignore the importance of water vapour by pretending it is a “feedback” to the effects of the minor greenhouse gas, carbon dioxide. You also conceal the fact that its distribution of water vapour in the atmosphere is extremely unbalanced, with most of it over the tropics and very little over the poles. Its role in the climate is almost completely unknown at present.

The frequency of heavy precipitation events has increased over most land areas, consistent with warming and observed increases of atmospheric water vapour.

Typical vague statement. “Increased” since when? where?, with what variability? Measurements are highly inaccurate.

Projections for the 21st Century from the IPCC’s4 2007 assessment (assuming no substantial efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions) include:

Note that these are “projections”, NOT “predictions” They are not based on evidence, only on partisan “expert” opinion.

An increase in globally-averaged surface temperature of 1.1 to 6.4°C by 21005. A globally-averaged sea level increase of 18 to 59 cm by 2100. However these projections do not include uncertainties in climate-carbon cycle feedbacks nor the full effects of dynamic changes in ice-sheet flow, so do not provide an upper bound for possible sea level rise. More heat waves, fewer frosts, and more heavy rain events are very likely. The area affected by droughts is likely to increase through the 21st Century. Increases are likely in the peak wind and rain intensity in tropical cyclones

More irresponsible ranting.

Projections for New Zealand based on these global projections suggest6:
A New Zealand-average warming7 of 0.2 to 2.0°C by 2040 and 0.7 to 5.1°C by 2090. Fewer cold temperatures and frosts, and more high temperature episodes. A stronger west-east rainfall gradient (wetter in the west and drier in the east) in winter and spring, and an increasing risk of extreme rainfall as the century progresses. Increasing drought risk during this century in areas which are currently drought-prone. An increase in New Zealand-averaged sea level of the same order as the IPCC global projections. Natural year to year variations in New Zealand’s climate will be superimposed on top of these projected anthropogenic changes.

They are getting 38 years of comfortable well-paid work before everybody tumbles to the scam in 2040.They have an excuse already ready for when it fails, and can be extended another 50 years. It is in the last sentence.

Some potential further risks are being quantified by ongoing research:
Some studies suggest substantial parts of the Greenland ice cap, and perhaps of the West Antarctic ice sheet could melt over the coming 1000 years. Global average sea level at the height of the last interglacial about 125,000 years ago (when average polar temperatures were around 3°C to 5°C warmer than now) was likely 4-6 m higher than at present.

The standby of contemporary scientific research is the could be/might be discovery, which is merely “suggested”. And “likely”.

Models indicate some slowing of the oceanic meridional overturning circulation (MOC) is very likely during the 21st Century. The MOC carries warm water into the North Atlantic where it cools, sinks and then spreads through the other ocean basins at depth.

No limit to this stuff.

As the globe warms, the oceans and biosphere may become less efficient at absorbing carbon dioxide, leading to a larger fraction of the anthropogenic emissions remaining in the atmosphere.

Maybe, maybe.

Reducing the future impact of climate change will require substantial reductions of net emissions of greenhouse gases. Major international policy changes would be required to deliver these reductions but various technologies exist to provide them:

Here it comes. Punish the people for being too prosperous.

More efficient use of energy, e.g. better designed and insulated houses, more efficient appliances and industrial processes Renewable energy sources, e.g. hydropower, geothermal, wind, marine, and solar Lower-carbon fossil fuels such as natural gas and the capture and storage of emissions from power plants More efficient transport and urban systems and the use of appropriate biofuels and other renewable energy sources to power transport
Reforestation, reduced deforestation, and lower emission forms of agriculture

Green Party propaganda. There is an election coming up. I have never understood why it is so necessary to punish the animals as well as the humans. Cows and sheep do not eat fossil fuels so they make no contribution to the “human” carbon dioxide emissions. They eat grass, and convert most of it into meat, milk and wool. A small residuum is emitted as methane which is converted back to carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and then is converted into more grass. I burn wood in a wood stove. It is entirely converted into carbon dioxide which helps grow more trees. I just recycle it. So do the animals. But I suppose they will be after me too soon.


This Climate Change Statement is veritably an orchestrated litany of lies, to borrow a phrase. As a longstanding member of the Royal Society of New Zealand I am unable to tolerate such a departure as this from the supposed objectives of fair or responsible comment on scientific matters, so I have resigned in protest.


Beck, E-G, 2007 150 Years of Atmospheric Gas Analysis by Chemical Methods, Energy and Environment 18 259-281.
Gray, V. R. 2000. The Cause of Global Warming. Energy and Environment. 11, 613-629.
Gray, V R. 2008a The Global Warming Scam.
Gray, V R. 2008b The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC): Spinning the Climate. http://www.techknow.eu/uploads/Spinning_the_Climate.pdf
IPCC (2007) Comments on 4th IPCC Report, WGI

Jaworowski, Z. 2007. CO2: The Greatest Scientific Swindle of Our Time. EIR Science (March), 38-55.
Karl, T.. R., S.J. Hassel, C.D. Miller, and W.L. Murray (Eds). 2007. Temperature Trends in the Lower Atmosphere: Steps for Understanding and Reconciling Differences A Report by the Climate Change Science Programme (CCSP) and the Subcommittee on Global Change Research http://www.climatescience.gov/Library/sap/sap1-1/finalreport/default.htm
Manning, M. R., A.J.. Gomez, K.P. Pohl 1994. http://cdiac.ornl.gov/trends/co2/baring.htm
McKitrick, R.R. and P.J. Michaels, 2007, Quantifying the influence of anthropogenic surface processes and inhomogeneities on gridded global climate data, J. Geophys. Res. 112, D24S09, doi:10:1029/2007JD008465.

Vincent R. Gray , M.A.,Ph.D., F.N.Z.I.C.
Climate Consultant

07-17-08, 10:02 AM
New kid's book that debunks CAGW:





Global Warming Hype Turns to Terror in Young Children

Los Angeles, CA - In her new book, Deb & Seby’s Real Deal on Global Warming, veteran comedy writer Al Sonja L. Schmidt uses her wit to ease the growing fears of children who are concerned over the earth’s future destruction and offers an alternate view on climate change than what they may have heard in the media or learned at school.

“Images of the earth drowning and beloved animals becoming extinct are plaguing children of all ages, striking fear that we are doomed!” says Schmidt. This dilemma, dubbed “eco-phobia,” is a result of the scare tactics that have successfully worked on younger audiences. Children are also worried that they are not doing enough to help the environment.

With the remnants of Earth Day lingering, environmentally-friendly activities have moved from planting flowers and cleaning up parks to political rallies and protests that only further a sense of doom to impressionable youth. “Let’s restore a sense of earth to Earth Day. Rather than using fear to provoke a reaction, why not offer positive encouragement to ease the concern children have for our planet?” asks Schmidt.

In the book, animated characters Deb & Seby explore the issues, answering questions like:

• Who’s Telling Us this Scary Stuff and Why?
• If Industry is So Bad, Why does the Rest of the World Want It?
• Why Global Warming Seems So Real
• Are People Really the Biggest Greenhouse Gas Polluters?
• If there’s Another Side, Why Haven’t We Heard It?
• What makes it “The Most Serious Issue of our Time”?

Deb & Seby’s Real Deal on Global Warming presents the views of many respected scientists, researchers and professors from around the world who oppose the global warming predictions that have taken the world by storm. It exposes why we can all “chill-lax” about global warming, man’s real input into this “problem,” wacky so-called solutions to global warming and other eco-predictions that turned out to be wrong.

“Is the global warming movement about caring for the Earth or about politics, a feel-good philosophy and control over our lifestyles?” asks Schmidt. “The ‘real deal’ is there’s no scientific consensus to prove that adults, much less children, have anything to worry about.”

Al Sonja L. Schmidt is a comedic writer who has brought her talent to award-winning children’s programming, including That’s So Raven, The Famous Jett Jackson and Cory in the House, as well as primetime comedy series In Living Color and NBC’s Hidden Hills.

07-17-08, 11:27 AM
That is funny. It has to have been one of the least hot Junes in Eastern Nebraska in the last 6 years.

same thing in NYC

for the second year in a row i didn't need the AC until late June and even now i don't turn it on every night. used to be you had to run it 24x7 from May to October

07-17-08, 11:53 AM
Another former alarmist turned skeptic:


No smoking hot spot
David Evans | July 18, 2008

I DEVOTED six years to carbon accounting, building models for the Australian Greenhouse Office. I am the rocket scientist who wrote the carbon accounting model (FullCAM) that measures Australia's compliance with the Kyoto Protocol, in the land use change and forestry sector.

FullCAM models carbon flows in plants, mulch, debris, soils and agricultural products, using inputs such as climate data, plant physiology and satellite data. I've been following the global warming debate closely for years.

When I started that job in 1999 the evidence that carbon emissions caused global warming seemed pretty good: CO2 is a greenhouse gas, the old ice core data, no other suspects.

The evidence was not conclusive, but why wait until we were certain when it appeared we needed to act quickly? Soon government and the scientific community were working together and lots of science research jobs were created. We scientists had political support, the ear of government, big budgets, and we felt fairly important and useful (well, I did anyway). It was great. We were working to save the planet.

But since 1999 new evidence has seriously weakened the case that carbon emissions are the main cause of global warming, and by 2007 the evidence was pretty conclusive that carbon played only a minor role and was not the main cause of the recent global warming. As Lord Keynes famously said, "When the facts change, I change my mind. What do you do, sir?"

There has not been a public debate about the causes of global warming and most of the public and our decision makers are not aware of the most basic salient facts:

1. The greenhouse signature is missing. We have been looking and measuring for years, and cannot find it.

Each possible cause of global warming has a different pattern of where in the planet the warming occurs first and the most. The signature of an increased greenhouse effect is a hot spot about 10km up in the atmosphere over the tropics. We have been measuring the atmosphere for decades using radiosondes: weather balloons with thermometers that radio back the temperature as the balloon ascends through the atmosphere. They show no hot spot. Whatsoever.

If there is no hot spot then an increased greenhouse effect is not the cause of global warming. So we know for sure that carbon emissions are not a significant cause of the global warming. If we had found the greenhouse signature then I would be an alarmist again.

When the signature was found to be missing in 2007 (after the latest IPCC report), alarmists objected that maybe the readings of the radiosonde thermometers might not be accurate and maybe the hot spot was there but had gone undetected. Yet hundreds of radiosondes have given the same answer, so statistically it is not possible that they missed the hot spot.

Recently the alarmists have suggested we ignore the radiosonde thermometers, but instead take the radiosonde wind measurements, apply a theory about wind shear, and run the results through their computers to estimate the temperatures. They then say that the results show that we cannot rule out the presence of a hot spot. If you believe that you'd believe anything.

2. There is no evidence to support the idea that carbon emissions cause significant global warming. None. There is plenty of evidence that global warming has occurred, and theory suggests that carbon emissions should raise temperatures (though by how much is hotly disputed) but there are no observations by anyone that implicate carbon emissions as a significant cause of the recent global warming.

3. The satellites that measure the world's temperature all say that the warming trend ended in 2001, and that the temperature has dropped about 0.6C in the past year (to the temperature of 1980). Land-based temperature readings are corrupted by the "urban heat island" effect: urban areas encroaching on thermometer stations warm the micro-climate around the thermometer, due to vegetation changes, concrete, cars, houses. Satellite data is the only temperature data we can trust, but it only goes back to 1979. NASA reports only land-based data, and reports a modest warming trend and recent cooling. The other three global temperature records use a mix of satellite and land measurements, or satellite only, and they all show no warming since 2001 and a recent cooling.

4. The new ice cores show that in the past six global warmings over the past half a million years, the temperature rises occurred on average 800 years before the accompanying rise in atmospheric carbon. Which says something important about which was cause and which was effect.

None of these points are controversial. The alarmist scientists agree with them, though they would dispute their relevance.

The last point was known and past dispute by 2003, yet Al Gore made his movie in 2005 and presented the ice cores as the sole reason for believing that carbon emissions cause global warming. In any other political context our cynical and experienced press corps would surely have called this dishonest and widely questioned the politician's assertion.

Until now the global warming debate has merely been an academic matter of little interest. Now that it matters, we should debate the causes of global warming.

So far that debate has just consisted of a simple sleight of hand: show evidence of global warming, and while the audience is stunned at the implications, simply assert that it is due to carbon emissions.

In the minds of the audience, the evidence that global warming has occurred becomes conflated with the alleged cause, and the audience hasn't noticed that the cause was merely asserted, not proved.

If there really was any evidence that carbon emissions caused global warming, don't you think we would have heard all about it ad nauseam by now?

The world has spent $50 billion on global warming since 1990, and we have not found any actual evidence that carbon emissions cause global warming. Evidence consists of observations made by someone at some time that supports the idea that carbon emissions cause global warming. Computer models and theoretical calculations are not evidence, they are just theory.

What is going to happen over the next decade as global temperatures continue not to rise? The Labor Government is about to deliberately wreck the economy in order to reduce carbon emissions. If the reasons later turn out to be bogus, the electorate is not going to re-elect a Labor government for a long time. When it comes to light that the carbon scare was known to be bogus in 2008, the ALP is going to be regarded as criminally negligent or ideologically stupid for not having seen through it. And if the Liberals support the general thrust of their actions, they will be seen likewise.

The onus should be on those who want to change things to provide evidence for why the changes are necessary. The Australian public is eventually going to have to be told the evidence anyway, so it might as well be told before wrecking the economy.

07-17-08, 04:38 PM

July 16, 2008

Van Helsing Mathematically Confirmed: There Is No Climate Change Crisis

Here's something unlikely to make the cover of Time. From the Science & Public Policy Institute:

WASHINGTON (7-15-08) — Mathematical proof that there is no "climate crisis" appears today in a major, peer-reviewed paper in Physics and Society, a learned journal of the 10,000-strong American Physical Society, SPPI reports.

Christopher Monckton, who once advised Margaret Thatcher, demonstrates via 30 equations that computer models used by the UN's climate panel (IPCC) were pre-programmed with overstated values for the three variables whose product is "climate sensitivity" (temperature increase in response to greenhouse-gas increase), resulting in a 500-2000% overstatement of CO2's effect on temperature in the IPCC's latest climate assessment report, published in 2007.

Climate Sensitivity Reconsidered http://www.aps.org/units/fps/newsletters/200807/index.cfm demonstrates that later this century a doubling of the concentration of CO2 compared with pre-industrial levels will increase global mean surface temperature not by the 6 °F predicted by the IPCC but, harmlessly, by little more than 1 °F.

The paper reveals the following:

• The IPCC's 2007 climate summary overstated CO2's impact on temperature by 500-2000%;

• CO2 enrichment will add little more than 1 °F (0.6 °C) to global mean surface temperature by 2100;

• Not one of the three key variables whose product is climate sensitivity can be measured directly;

• The IPCC's values for these key variables are taken from only four published papers, not 2,500;

• The IPCC's values for each of the three variables, and hence for climate sensitivity, are overstated;

• "Global warming" halted ten years ago, and surface temperature has been falling for seven years;

• Not one of the computer models relied upon by the IPCC predicted so long and rapid a cooling;

• The IPCC inserted a table into the scientists' draft, overstating the effect of ice-melt by 1000%;

• It was proved 50 years ago that predicting climate more than two weeks ahead is impossible;

• Mars, Jupiter, Neptune's largest moon, and Pluto warmed at the same time as Earth warmed;

• In the past 70 years the Sun was more active than at almost any other time in the past 11,400 years.

Someone had better get this news to Al Gore, since he won't be seeing it on TV. I'm sure he'll want to apologize for causing a lot of senseless hysteria over nothing.

07-17-08, 06:26 PM
McCain and Obama fawn over a stark raving mad Al Gore:


Gore:Make all US electricity from renewable sources
Thu Jul 17, 2008 3:28pm EDT
By Jasmin Melvin and Deborah Zabarenko

WASHINGTON, July 17 (Reuters) - Al Gore, the Nobel Prize-winning crusader on climate change, challenged the United States on Thursday to commit to producing all U.S. electricity from renewable sources like solar and wind power in 10 years.

"Our dangerous over-reliance on carbon-based fuels is at the core of all three of these challenges -- the economic, environmental and national security crises," the former Democratic vice president and presidential candidate in 2000 told a meeting in Washington.

"So today I challenge our nation to commit to producing 100 percent of our electricity from renewable energy and truly clean carbon-free sources within 10 years," he said.

Gore also took aim at the Bush administration's policies on climate change, without mentioning the president by name. Advocates of tougher measures to combat global warming caused by carbon emissions have long said President George W. Bush has done too little about climate change.

Gore, who faced a smattering of protesters rallying against big government outside the hall, likened the fight against climate change to the successful challenge in the 1960s to send humans to the Moon within the decade.

Gore, who starred in the Academy Award-winning documentary "An Inconvenient Truth" about the perils of global warming, also disparaged goals set too far in the future.

"A political promise to do something 40 years from now is universally ignored because everyone knows it's totally meaningless. Ten years is about the maximum time that we as a nation can hold a steady aim and hit our target."

Bush has opposed economy-wide limits on the emission of climate-warming carbon dioxide. Last week, he and other leaders of the Group of Eight major industrialized nations offered a non-binding pledge to cut emissions 50 percent by 2050 -- 42 years from now.


The Bush administration and the other rich nations said they could not meet this goal without participation from developing economies like China and India.

Gore, noting that an international climate change treaty is expected to be concluded by the end of the next U.S. president's first year in office, questioned any delay on combating global warming.

"It is a great error to say that the United States must wait for others to join us in this matter," he said. "In fact, we must move first, because that is the key to getting others to follow; and because moving first is in our own national interest."

Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama said he supported Gore's challenge, and said he would fast-track investments in renewable energy like solar, wind and biofuels if elected. "It's a strategy that will create millions of new jobs that pay well and cannot be outsourced, and one that will leave our children a world that is cleaner and safer," he said.

Obama's rival in the November election, Republican candidate John McCain, also backed Gore's plan. "If the vice president says it's do-able, I believe it's do-able," he told reporters.

Gore said he had had conversations with Obama, McCain, and with Bob Barr, the Libertarian Party candidate.
Barack, if you want to do something destructive such as more government subsidies for alternative energies while shutting down perfectly good and nondangerous fossil fuel plants to create jobs you could just blow up a bunch of roads and bridges - that would create the need for plenty of new jobs too. The old broken window fallacy.

John, could you be more sycophantic? :yack:

Al, there is simply no way in hell that all electricity for this country can be generated without fossil fuels in ten years, barring some kind of heretofore unknown technological breakthrough. More to the point, there is no need for it (although it wouldn't be unwelcome) because CO2 is not the boogeyman you make it out to be. (I did read elsewhere that Gore said he would continue to utilize the existing nuclear power plants but apparently did not call for any expansion of nuclear, the only known source other than fossil fuels which can generate the necessary large quantities of electricity).

Gore has simply repeated the lies and exaggerations he has been vomiting for years. That anyone listens to anything he says is beyond belief.

I have seen one attempt to bring a little sanity to Gore's nonsense today. From John Tierney of the New York Times:


July 17, 2008, 4:11 pm
3 Questions for Al Gore
By John Tierney

My colleague Andy Revkin is doing a great job of point-by-point analysis of Al Gore’s speech today calling for America to rely entirely on carbon-free electricity within 10 years. I’m glad to see Mr. Gore discussing carbon taxes (a topic he once avoided), but I’ve got a few questions about the rest of the speech:

1) Can anyone explain why Mr. Gore keeps hurting his own cause with junk science? Andy gives him a deserved smackdown for saying there “seem to be more tornadoes than in living memory.” I can understand why Mr. Gore felt he needed this sort of hype in the past. But after “Inconvenient Truth” and the Nobel, he knows he can count on attention. He knows the public is concerned about the problem. He also knows that his exaggerations have generated bad publicity (and a formal ruling by a British judge about his scientific errors). So why, even though there’s no good evidence that global warming has increased tornadoes, would he try to suggest they’re increasing — and this in a year in which there’s been global cooling?

2) Why is Mr. Gore still afraid of discussing nuclear power? He tries to sound Kennedyesque in setting his decade-long quest and inveighs against “the defenders of the status quo.” But he’s still reluctant to use his stature among greens to get them to reconsider the largest carbon-free source of electricity in America today, nuclear power. Is this a profile in courage?

3) Why hasn’t his one-year plan for energy worked at his own home? A year ago, after the embarrassing revelation that his home in Tennessee used 20 times as much electricity as the average home, he renovated his home to make it more energy-efficient. But a year later, the Tennessee Center for Policy Research reports that his home electricity usage has increased by 10 percent — an additional 1,638 kilowatts per month — since the renovations, which included solar panels, a geothermal system and a variety of conservation measures.

Does this inspire confidence in his 10-year plan for the rest of America?
I'm sure there will be many more critiques. Few, if any, will be published by the MSM (and Tierney's is on his blog, not in the newspaper).

07-17-08, 06:39 PM
same thing in NYC

for the second year in a row i didn't need the AC until late June and even now i don't turn it on every night. used to be you had to run it 24x7 from May to OctoberIn my opinion Texas had one of the hotter June's in recent memory. We had high '90s for several days.

07-17-08, 06:52 PM
Et tu, Bob?


Barr praises Gore’s work on climate change
By Beth Sussman
Posted: 07/17/08 03:10 PM [ET]

Libertarian presidential candidate Bob Barr praised Al Gore on Thursday for his commitment to addressing climate change and said he has met with the former vice president several times to discuss possible solutions.

In a speech Thursday at Constitution Hall in Washington, Gore said that he has also discussed climate change with presidential candidates Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.).

Both McCain and Obama believe that action needs to be taken on global warming and have separately criticized the Bush administration for its approach on the issue.

Barr said he believes the most effective energy solution will be “market-based” and characterized by “free enterprise.”

“There obviously is a role for government,” Barr said. “There’s a role for private industry. There’s a role for nonprofits and certainly a role for the American people, individually and collectively.”

Barr, a former Republican congressman from Georgia, said it is time to recognize that global warming “is a very serious problem” and that it will get “dramatically worse” unless significant action is taken.

Gore attacked the energy solutions provided by President Bush, who lifted an executive ban on offshore oil drilling this week.

“It is only a truly dysfunctional system that would buy into the perverse logic that the short-term answer to high gasoline prices is drilling for more oil 10 years from now,” Gore said.

07-17-08, 06:56 PM

July 16, 2008

"Considerable presence" of skeptics

The American Physical Society, an organization representing nearly 50,000 physicists, has reversed its stance on climate change and is now proclaiming that many of its members disbelieve in human-induced global warming. The APS is also sponsoring public debate on the validity of global warming science. The leadership of the society had previously called the evidence for global warming "incontrovertible."

In a posting to the APS forum, editor Jeffrey Marque explains,"There is a considerable presence within the scientific community of people who do not agree with the IPCC conclusion that anthropogenic CO2 emissions are very probably likely to be primarily responsible for global warming that has occurred since the Industrial Revolution."

The APS is opening its debate with the publication of a paper by Lord Monckton of Brenchley, which concludes that climate sensitivity -- the rate of temperature change a given amount of greenhouse gas will cause -- has been grossly overstated by IPCC modeling. A low sensitivity implies additional atmospheric CO2 will have little effect on global climate.

Larry Gould, Professor of Physics at the University of Hartford and Chairman of the New England Section of the APS, called Monckton's paper an "expose of the IPCC that details numerous exaggerations and "extensive errors"

In an email to DailyTech, Monckton says, "I was dismayed to discover that the IPCC's 2001 and 2007 reports did not devote chapters to the central 'climate sensitivity' question, and did not explain in proper, systematic detail the methods by which they evaluated it. When I began to investigate, it seemed that the IPCC was deliberately concealing and obscuring its method."

According to Monckton, there is substantial support for his results, "in the peer-reviewed literature, most articles on climate sensitivity conclude, as I have done, that climate sensitivity must be harmlessly low."

Monckton, who was the science advisor to Britain's Thatcher administration, says natural variability is the cause of most of the Earth's recent warming. "In the past 70 years the Sun was more active than at almost any other time in the past 11,400 years ... Mars, Jupiter, Neptune’s largest moon, and Pluto warmed at the same time as Earth."

Update 7/17/2008: After publication of this story, the APS responded with a statement that its Physics and Society Forum is merely one unit within the APS, and its views do not reflect those of the Society at large.

07-17-08, 07:08 PM

July 16, 2008

"Considerable presence" of skeptics

The American Physical Society, an organization representing nearly 50,000 physicists, has reversed its stance on climate change and is now proclaiming that many of its members disbelieve in human-induced global warming. The APS is also sponsoring public debate on the validity of global warming science. The leadership of the society had previously called the evidence for global warming "incontrovertible."

In a posting to the APS forum, editor Jeffrey Marque explains,"There is a considerable presence within the scientific community of people who do not agree with the IPCC conclusion that anthropogenic CO2 emissions are very probably likely to be primarily responsible for global warming that has occurred since the Industrial Revolution."

The APS is opening its debate with the publication of a paper by Lord Monckton of Brenchley, which concludes that climate sensitivity -- the rate of temperature change a given amount of greenhouse gas will cause -- has been grossly overstated by IPCC modeling. A low sensitivity implies additional atmospheric CO2 will have little effect on global climate.

Larry Gould, Professor of Physics at the University of Hartford and Chairman of the New England Section of the APS, called Monckton's paper an "expose of the IPCC that details numerous exaggerations and "extensive errors"

In an email to DailyTech, Monckton says, "I was dismayed to discover that the IPCC's 2001 and 2007 reports did not devote chapters to the central 'climate sensitivity' question, and did not explain in proper, systematic detail the methods by which they evaluated it. When I began to investigate, it seemed that the IPCC was deliberately concealing and obscuring its method."

According to Monckton, there is substantial support for his results, "in the peer-reviewed literature, most articles on climate sensitivity conclude, as I have done, that climate sensitivity must be harmlessly low."

Monckton, who was the science advisor to Britain's Thatcher administration, says natural variability is the cause of most of the Earth's recent warming. "In the past 70 years the Sun was more active than at almost any other time in the past 11,400 years ... Mars, Jupiter, Neptune’s largest moon, and Pluto warmed at the same time as Earth."

Update 7/17/2008: After publication of this story, the APS responded with a statement that its Physics and Society Forum is merely one unit within the APS, and its views do not reflect those of the Society at large.
The headline over this story (also in the url) is:

Myth of Consensus Explodes: APS Opens Global Warming Debate

How many times must this myth be exploded before the likes of Gore, Hansen and other charlatans will admit it?

07-17-08, 07:28 PM
There is a way to have fun at an Al Gore event (video):


Who'da thunk it?

07-17-08, 08:53 PM
There is a way to have fun at an Al Gore event (video):


Who'da thunk it?

I was gonna post that. Good job on beating me to it!

Tuan Jim
07-18-08, 05:16 AM
Never thought I'd see an article like this in the Guardian. I guess a broke clock is right twice a day (then again, he is only a guest commentator):


Greens are the enemies of liberty: Environmentalists want to curb our freedom far more than the government's anti-terrorist laws ever will

Brendan O'Neill
Tuesday July 15, 2008

Imagine a society where simply speaking out of turn or saying the "wrong thing" was openly discussed as a crime against humanity, and where sceptics or deniers of the truth were publicly labelled "criminals", hauled before the press and accused of endangering humanity with their grotesque untruths.

Imagine a society where even some liberals demanded severe restrictions on freedom of movement; where people campaigned for travelling overseas to be made prohibitively expensive in order to force people to stay at home; and where immigration was frowned upon as "toxic" and "destructive".

Imagine a society so illiberal that columnists felt no qualms about demanding government legislation to force us to change our behaviour; where the public was continually implored to feel guilty about everything from driving to shopping – and where those who refused to feel guilty were said to be suffering from a "psychological" disorder or some other species of mental illness".

Surely no one would put up with such a society? Yet today, all of the above things are happening – under what we might call the tyranny of environmentalism – and people are putting up with it.

In the current debate on liberty, we hear a lot about the attack on our democratic rights by the government's security agenda, but little about the grave impact of environmentalism on the fabric of freedom. It seems to me that green thinking – with its shrill intolerance of dissenting views, its deep distaste for free movement and free choice, and its view of individuals, not as history-makers, but as filthy polluters – poses a more profound threat to liberty even than the government's paranoid anti-terrorist agenda.

Environmentalists are innately hostile to freedom of speech. Last month James Hansen, one of the world's leading climate change scientists, said the CEOs of oil companies should be tried for crimes against humanity and nature. They have been "putting out misinformation", he said, and "I think that's a crime". This follows green writer Mark Lynas's insistence that there should be "international criminal tribunals" for climate change deniers, who will be "partially but directly responsible for millions of deaths". They will "have to answer for their crimes", he says. The American eco-magazine Grist recently published an article on deniers that called for "war crimes trials for these bastards… some sort of climate Nuremberg."

It is the mark of shrieking authoritarianism to look upon dissenting views not simply as wrong or foolish, but as criminal. Throughout history inquisitors and censors have sought to silence sections of society by labelling their words as "dangerous" and a threat to safety and stability; now environmentalists are doing the same. Their demonisation of sceptics as "deniers" has had a chilling effect on public debate. The environmentalist ethos is hostile to free movement, too. Behind the greens' attacks on road-building and cheap flights there lurks an agenda of enforced localism. What most of us experience as a liberty – the ability to drive great distances or to travel overseas, something our forebears only dreamt of as they spent their entire lives in the same town – has been relabelled under the tyranny of environmentalism as a "threat to the planet".

The Optimum Population Trust, which counts Jonathon Porritt among its patrons, says mass immigration is "a route to environmental collapse". It believes the UK is overpopulated and wants to "balance immigration with emigration".

Not surprisingly, opportunistic anti-immigrant outfits have borrowed elements of this argument. The British National Party now argues that "our countryside is vanishing beneath a tidal wave of concrete" as a result of house-building for immigrants. "Immigration is creating an environmental disaster", the BNP says.

But perhaps the main way that environmentalism undermines the culture of freedom is by its ceaseless promotion of guilt. In the environmentalist era, we are no longer really free citizens, so much as potential polluters. We are continually told – by government, by commentators, by radical activists – that everything we do, from wearing disposable nappies to using deodorant to allowing ourselves to be cremated, is harmful to our surroundings.

Liberty – true liberty – requires that people see themselves as self-respecting, self-determining subjects, capable of making free choices and pursuing the "good life" as they see fit. Today, by contrast, we are warned that we are toxic, loaded, dangerous specimens, who must always restrain our instincts and aspire to austerity. This is not conducive to a culture of liberty; indeed, it represents a dangerous historic shift, from the Enlightenment era of free citizenship to a new dark age where individuals are depicted as meek in the face of more powerful, unpredictable forces: the gods of the sea, sky and ozone layer.

And what of those individuals who say "to hell with environmentalism" and continue living the way they want to? Apparently, in the words of the Ecologist, they have a disordered "psychology"; they are victims of "self-deception and mass denial".

Some greens openly admit they are on the side of illiberalism. George Monbiot describes environmentalism as "a campaign not for more freedom but for less". Environmentalism is instinctively and relentlessly illiberal, and it is doing more to inculcate people with fear, self-loathing and a religious-style sense of meekness than any piece of anti-terror legislation ever could. If you believe in freedom, you must reject it.

07-18-08, 05:54 PM
Gore's fantas(tic)y plan.


Dissecting Al Gore's $5 Trillion Energy Plan
July 18, 2008 11:01 AM ET | James Pethokoukis

In a speech yesterday here in Washington, Al Gore challenged the United States to "produce every kilowatt of electricity through wind, sun, and other Earth-friendly energy sources within 10 years. This goal is achievable, affordable, and transformative." (Well, the goal is at least one of those things.) Gore compared the zero-carbon effort to the Apollo program. And the comparison would be economically apt if, rather than putting a man on the (moon—which costs about $100 billion in today's dollars—President Kennedy's goal had been to build a massive lunar colony, complete with a casino where the Rat Pack could perform.

Gore's fantastic—in the truest sense of the word—proposal is almost unfathomably pricey and makes sense only if you think that not doing so almost immediately would result in an uninhabitable planet. Texas oilman T. Boone Pickens recently came out with a plan to generate 20 percent of America's power through wind. His estimate was that it would cost $1 trillion to build that capacity and another $200 billion to update our electrical grid to transmit that energy around the country. (And what would be the environmental impact of all those windmills dotting the countryside? Or solar panels covering our pristine deserts?)

By my math, using Pickens's numbers, converting the whole economy to renewable energy in a short period of time might cost $5 trillion—and that is if you assume that government-led projects come in on budget. (Remember, the current U.S. gross domestic product is $12 trillion.) That would be like creating another Japan. Or fighting World War II all over again. The latter analogy is especially apt since the Gore Plan would effectively transform our free-market economy into a command-and-control war economy full of rationing and scarcity. Of course, there are many folks like Gore who view global warming as the moral equivalent of war. But Gore would extend the concept into the economic equivalent of war. Again, all this makes sense if you think we are doomed otherwise.

This isn't the first time Gore has made a proposal with jaw-dropping economic consequences. Environmental economist William Nordhaus ran the numbers on Gore's idea to reduce carbon emissions by 90 percent by 2050. Nordhaus found that while such a plan would indeed reduce the maximum increase in global temperatures to between 1.3 and 1.6 degrees Celsius, it did so "at very high cost" of between $17 trillion and $22 trillion over the long term, as opposed to doing nothing. (Again, just for comparative purposes, the entire global economy is about $50 trillion.)

You know, when she was running for president, Hillary Clinton gave a speech in which she stated that climate change would make a "great organizing principle" for the economy. What Clinton and Gore miss is the opportunity cost of doing something else—anything else—with all that dough.
A couple of points:

* A persistent error of the anti-free market people is that they see only what (they think) would be done under their grandiose schemes. They do not see what could have been done if such massive amounts of our hard earned built up wealth and capital were not committed to these follies. It's Bastiat's "seen and unseen," further popularized by Hazlett's still incisive after all the years Economics in One Lesson (the lesson anti-free market people never learn).

*Even Nordhaus, I believe, way overestimates the probable temperature increase and damage from global warming and thus Gore's plans would cost much more than his figure compared to doing nothing (or, rather, adapting to any actual damage). Gore's plans are like using thermonuclear weapons to swat flies.

07-19-08, 10:29 AM
More on the eco-media whore kayaking to the North Pole (see Post #174):


Brit explorer will kayak to North Pole warning about climate change;
Posted 2 days ago

Last year, he swam where sea ice should never have allowed him to swim. This year, he plans to paddle waters that are expected to be open for the first time in recorded history in another effort to warn the world of how quickly the Arctic is melting. [Note by movielib: All nonsense. Arctic waters, including the Northwest passage, have been open at least a few known times in "recorded history." It was just before satellite coverage.]

Lewis Pugh, the U. K.-based explorer, athlete, climate crusader and maritime lawyer whose 2007 North Pole swim drew headlines around the world, is back with a dream to kayak from Norway to the Pole to draw attention to global warming -- and to encourage all nations to back off territorial designs on a region he says should belong to everyone.

"There is no need whatsoever for the countries around the Arctic to be fighting about the natural resources up there," said Pugh in a phone interview from England.

"I believe the Arctic belongs to all of us, because all our futures will be determined in the Arctic."

After last year's record-breaking loss of sea ice in the Arctic, many scientists are predicting that waters all the way up to the North Pole will be largely ice-free by the end of the summer.

"It wouldn't have been possible to do this kayak even last year," said Pugh. "The Arctic has changed so much in just one year."

Pugh's route will take him 1,200 kilo-metres from Spitsbergen Island, Norway, to the Pole. He's been training for the two-to three-week paddle in northern Norway in conditions, he said, "that, frankly, frightened me."

"Not only was I wearing a wetsuit, I was wearing a drysuit over top and I was still getting cold.

"It's very cold up there and it's going to be even colder on a kayak."

He will be accompanied on the trip by a crew following him in a small, ice-strengthened boat. He'll spend nights on the boat and paddle during the day.

Pugh, who has raised about half the $400,000 he needs for the project, said the results are worth the work and suffering.

After last year's swim, in which he swam one kilometre in below-freezing water clad only in a tiny bathing suit and a pair of goggles, Pugh said he has had the opportunity to speak with hundreds of political leaders and businesspeople from around the world about how climate change in the Arctic is the bellwether for the planet.

At a recent meeting in Greenland, representatives from the five nations with Arctic coastlines rejected any kind of international treaty governing the Arctic.

Claims for control over portions of the Arctic seabed are being made to the United Nations under the Convention on the Law of the Sea, which is expected to be settled some time around 2020.
I thought this article raised two points not mentioned in the earlier article.

(1) It's nice to see Pugh wants to ensure another "tragedy of the commons" above the Arctic Circle.

(2) It's nice he has raised half of the $400,000(!) needed for this stunt. I doubt it will cover the cost if a Russian icebreaker has to save him at some point when he fails. The Russians have generously saved others attempting similar stunts before him and, AFAIK, have never been compensated.

Furthermore, contrary to assertions by both Pugh and the writer of the article, it is not likely that there will be less sea ice in the Arctic this year than last. Melting is running almost a million square km behind last year.

07-19-08, 11:11 AM
A complete list of things caused by global warming (http://www.numberwatch.co.uk/warmlist.htm)

Forgive me if this has been posted before. A friend recently e-mailed me the link and I found it laughably depressing (in that people buy this ridiculousness). Apparently, it hasn't been updated to include Black Hawk Down.
Black Hawk Down has now been added. :):up:

07-19-08, 12:49 PM
Global cooling coming for a few decades?


Jul 18, 2008
Shifting of the PDO to Cool Mode Assures Global Cooling for the Next Three Decades

Don J. Easterbrook, Dept. of Geology, Western Washington University, Bellingham, WA

Addressing the Washington Policymakers in Seattle, WA, Dr. Don Easterbrook said that shifting of the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) from its warm mode to its cool mode virtually assures global cooling for the next 25-30 years and means that the global warming of the past 30 years is over. The announcement by NASA that the (PDO) had shifted from its warm mode to its cool mode is right on schedule as predicted by past climate and PDO changes (Easterbrook, 2001, 2006, 2007) and is not an oddity superimposed upon and masking the predicted severe warming by the IPCC. This has significant implications for the future and indicates that the IPCC climate models were wrong in their prediction of global temperatures soaring 1F per decade for the rest of the century.

Cooling of the Pacific Ocean and setting up of the cool-mode PDO. Sea surface temperature anomaly in the Pacific Ocean from April 14-21, 2008.

The cool water anomaly in the center of the image shows the lingering effect of the year-old La Nina. However, the much broader area of cooler-than-average water off the coast of North America from Alaska (top center) to the equator is a classic feature of the cool phase of the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO). The cool waters wrap in a horseshoe shape around a core of warmer-than-average water. (In the warm phase, the pattern is reversed). Unlike El Nino and La Nina, which may occur every 3 to 7 years and last from 6 to 18 months, the PDO can remain in the same phase for 20 to 30 years.

As shown by the historic pattern of PDOs over the past century and by corresponding global warming and cooling, the pattern is part of ongoing warm/cool cycles that last 25-30 years. Each time the PDO mode has shifted from warm to cool or cool to warm, the global climate has changed accordingly. In 1977, the PDO shifted from cool mode to warm mode and set off the global warming from 1977 to 1998, often referred to as the “Great Climate Shift.” The recent shift from PDO warm mode to cool mode is similar to the shift that occurred in the mid-1940’s and resulted in 30 years of global cooling. The global warming from ~1915 to ~1945 was also brought on by a mode shift in the PDO. Every indication points continuation of the PDO patterns of the past century and global cooling for the next 30 years. Thus, the global warming the Earth has experienced since 1977 appears to be over!

One can see that from 2008 on the graph from the previous cool period has been grafted on. That is, of course, only an approximation, and it will not be exactly repeated. However, the odds are probably good that it will be similar.

07-19-08, 03:02 PM
I didn't think I would post this sideshow but it's just gotten too good.

Noel Sheppard, a blogger at conservative news watchdog site, Newsbusters, was attacked by the lofty Gavin Schmidt of leading alarmist website RealClimate and perhaps the country's most outspoken climate alarmist scientist after King James. Aside from this not seeming to be the type of target one would expect for a supposed climate science site, Schmidt got downright nasty and accused Sheppard of all the things he was doing himself (ad homs, name calling etc.) Here is Sheppard's reply, now with <strike>an</strike> <strike>two</strike> <strike>three</strike> <strike>four</strike> five updates:


NASA Climate Alarmist Attacks NewsBusters' Sheppard
By Noel Sheppard (Bio | Archive)
July 18, 2008 - 12:52 ET

Updates at end of post: Schmidt responds.

Last Saturday, one of the nation's leading climate alarmists -- a government employee with a history of attacking people that don't agree with his views on anthropogenic global warming -- wrote rather disparagingly about a somewhat satirical NewsBusters piece.

Despite claiming he typically doesn’t comment on things “written about climate change in the more excitable parts of [sic] web,” NASA’s Gavin Schmidt took time out of his busy Saturday schedule to respond to something he described as “probably the most boneheaded article that I have seen in ages.”

Was this an effort by one of the founding members of RealClimate – the world’s leading website specializing in climate change hysteria – to correct errors he felt existed in my article? Or, was this a predictable attack on a popular conservative blog that not only regularly exposes the one-sided nature of media reports about global warming, but also frequently brings attention to studies that go counter to RealClimate’s, and maybe more importantly, Schmidt’s views?

After all, to climate alarmists like Schmidt, media shouldn’t be reporting the realist (nee “skeptical”) side of this issue as was made perfectly clear by Nobel Laureate Al Gore during an interview with NBC’s Meredith Vieira during the November 5, 2007, installment of the “Today” show (photo via NPR):

[P]art of the challenge the news media has had in covering this [global warming] story is the old habit of taking the "on the one hand, on the other hand" approach. There are still people who believe that the earth is flat. But when you're reporting on a story like the one you're covering today, where you have people all around the world, you don't take, you don't search out, for someone who still believes the earth is flat and give them equal time.

Ironically, even though Schmidt probably thinks NewsBusters and its readers believe the earth is flat, he did indeed search me out, and wrote (emphasis added throughout):

I occasionally marvel at the amount of nonsense that is written about climate change in the more excitable parts of [sic] web, and most of the time, I don't bother to comment. But in relation to the issue of aerosols, chemistry and climate, I read yesterday (h/t Atmoz) probably the most boneheaded article that I have seen in ages (and that's saying a lot).

Schmidt then attacked my piece by employing a well-known albeit dishonest debate tactic of putting words in your opponent's mouth: "they confuse aerosols with photochemical smog."

Did I? Well, not really. Although the word “aerosol” does appear in the NewScientist article I cited about cleaner air being responsible for rising temperatures in Europe, Reuters didn’t mention “photochemical” in the piece I referenced concerning global warming increasing smog levels…and neither did I.

This, of course, is why it’s customary to cite, by direct quotation, when challenging a supposed mistake in another's work. I guess Schmidt is unaware of such journalistic etiquette.

It is also expected that when you suggest someone has misinterpreted articles written by others, you refer to and link to the same articles the author in question did. Schmidt didn’t do this either:

The hook for this piece of foolishness were two interesting articles published this week by Ruckstuhl and colleagues and a draft EPA report on the impacts of climate on air quality.

No, not really, for the links inside “Ruckstuhl and colleagues” and “the impacts of climate on air quality” go to the American Geophysical Union and the National Center for Environmental Assessment respectively, the websites that published the studies in question.

My piece linked to neither. Nice sleight of hand, wouldn’t you agree?

Regardless of what was likely an innocent faux pas on Schmidt’s part, assuming I had written about the relationship between aerosols and photochemical smog, it appears his concerns put him at odds with his beloved Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change which defined the former:

A collection of airborne solid or liquid particles, with a typical size between 0.01 and 10 mm and residing in the atmosphere for at least several hours. Aerosols may be of either natural or anthropogenic origin. Aerosols may influence climate in two ways: directly through scattering and absorbing radiation, and indirectly through acting as condensation nuclei for cloud formation or modifying the optical properties and lifetime of clouds.

Embedded inside Schmidt's "photochemical smog" was a link that included the following (readers should take note that it goes to Wikipedia! Don't you love it when "scientists" use that website as a resource? We’ll have more on that later.):

This forms when sunlight hits various pollutants in the air and forms a mix of inimical chemicals that can be very dangerous. A photochemical smog is the chemical reaction of sunlight, nitrogen oxides (NOx) and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in the atmosphere, which leaves airborne particles (called particulate matter) and ground-level ozone.

Nitrogen oxides are released by nitrogen and oxygen in the air reacting together under high temperature such as in the exhaust of fossil fuel-burning engines in cars, trucks, coal power plants, and industrial manufacturing factories. VOCs are released from man-made sources such as gasoline, paints, solvents, pesticides, and biogenic sources, such as pine and citrus tree emissions.

It would be interesting to get Schmidt’s opinion about whether or not the "various pollutants in the air" described by Wikipedia fit under the IPCC's definition of aerosols? If so, aren't aerosols, therefore, involved in photochemical smog?

Speaking of Wikipedia and its use by folks like Schmidt, Lawrence Solomon wrote on July 8 about how this website is used by climate alarmists to spread misinformation about global warming around the world (emphasis added):

Ever wonder how Al Gore, the United Nations, and company continue to get away with their claim of a “scientific consensus” confirming their doomsday view of global warming? Look no farther than Wikipedia for a stunning example of how the global-warming propaganda machine works.

Not surprisingly, RealClimate recommends Wikipedia as a resource “that people can use to get up to speed on the issue of climate change.” Nothing like indoctrinating folks by sending them to sources that almost completely and exclusively agree with your views, don’t you think?

Moving forward, Schmidt was also displeased by the following in my piece:

The next error is to equate changes in temperatures in Europe to the globe. While it would be true that if global aerosol levels declined it would lead to increased global warming, aerosol trends in Asia are increasing strongly, even while those in the US and Europe are dropping. The net effect is possibly a slight drop, but the impact on global temperature is as yet unclear.

This represented either a lack of arithmetic acumen that is totally astounding for someone of Schmidt’s stature, or another attempt to discredit NewsBusters by misrepresenting the truth: since global temperature is an average of data-points around the world, a temperature increase in Europe due to cleaner air DOES drive up the mean. Any suggestion to the contrary is totally devoid of logic.

Does that mean the average can't drop? Certainly not. But, it assures that such a declining average is still HIGHER than what it would be if that continent's numbers were not being positively skewed by cleaner air.

Moving forward, along with irony and simple arithmetic calculations, it appears hypothetical questions also challenge Schmidt, for as part of my conclusion, I posed the following:

Wouldn't it be fascinating if such efforts [involved in complying with the Montreal Protocol] lead to cleaner air around the world which ended up warming the planet, and that additional warmth is now breaking down the very ozone we thought we could save?

Schmidt seemed to miss the importance of the question-mark in that suggestion:

Every part of this sentence is wrong. The Montreal Protocol had no impact on cleaning the air, it stopped the growth of CFCs which are powerful greenhouse gases (in addition to their role in depleting stratospheric ozone), therefore it slowed global warming, rather than increasing it, and we aren't trying to save ground-level ozone. Had any of this been true it would indeed have been fascinating.

"Had any of this been true it would indeed have been fascinating." And that, indeed, was the point - wouldn't it be fascinating if true, especially since it might be?

For instance, since Schmidt loves Wikipedia as a scientific source, it defines the 1990 Clean Air Act as "a piece of United States environmental policy relating to the reduction of smog and air pollution."

Smog and air pollution. Taking this a step further, isn't it interesting that the Act directly discussed the Montreal Protocol, as well as ozone protection (emphasis added):

In June 1989 President Bush proposed sweeping revisions to the Clean Air Act. Building on Congressional proposals advanced during the 1980s, the President proposed legislation designed to curb three major threats to the nation's environment and to the health of millions of Americans: acid rain, urban air pollution, and toxic air emissions. The proposal also called for establishing a national permits program to make the law more workable, and an improved enforcement program to help ensure better compliance with the Act.

By large votes, both the House of Representatives (401-21) and the Senate (89-11) passed Clean Air bills that contained the major components of the President's proposals. Both bills also added provisions requiring the phaseout of ozone-depleting chemicals, roughly according to the schedule outlined in international negotiations (Revised Montreal Protocol). [...]

The most widespread and persistent urban pollution problem is ozone. The causes of this and the lesser problem of carbon monoxide (CO) and particulate matter (PM-10) pollution in our urban areas are largely due to the diversity and number of urban air pollution sources. One component of urban smog - hydrocarbons - comes from automobile emissions, petroleum refineries, chemical plants, dry cleaners, gasoline stations, house painting and printing shops. Another key component - nitrogen oxides - comes from the combustion of fuel for transportation, utilities and industries.

Let's recap the history of this Act, shall we?

The Montreal Protocol went into effect January 1, 1989, with the first meeting in Helsinki, Finland, in May of that year. The following month, President George H. W. Bush proposed a new Clean Air Act, signed into law in 1990, which, along with addressing ozone depletion and meeting the requirements of this Protocol, allowed the EPA to establish limits on the quantity of any pollutant that can be present in the air anywhere in this nation.

As a result, as far as the U.S. is concerned, the program designed to comply with the Montreal Protocol did IN FACT result in cleaner air. I guess Schmidt hadn't heard about this; it makes one wonder how many other nations did the very same thing at the very same time thereby making my hypothetical question even more fascinating.

In the end, two articles were published last week -- by NewScientist and Reuters -- which provided an example of just how contradictory global warming information can be, and why the assertion "the debate is over" defies reason. Yet, folks like Schmidt want people to think there's actually a consensus concerning this matter.

It seems obvious from their behavior, and from this piece by Schmidt, that one way alarmists create the appearance of a consensus is by attacking anyone that doesn't agree with them.

Maybe it's because some of these folks demolished Schmidt and two of his fellow alarmists in a March 2007 debate in New York City. Representing the realists at that event was Richard Lindzen, who Schmidt attacked the very next month.

In fact, attacking the opposition seems to be a prerequisite at RealClimate as Roger Pielke, Jr., wrote on January 14, 2005 (emphasis added):

The site's focus has been exclusively on attacking those who invoke science as the basis for their opposition to action on climate change, folks such as George Will, Senator James Inhofe, Michael Crichton, McIntyre and McKitrick, Fox News, and Myron Ebell. Whether intended or not, the site has clearly aligned itself squarely with one political position on climate change.

I guess this puts me in good company. Yet, potentially more disturbing is the power RealClimate has within the mainstream media, as well as who appears to be funding and/or supporting this website. Press members love to cite RealClimate as the final word on global warming, and virtually always refer to it and its writers in nothing but glowing terms as this piece at Time.com demonstrates:

The Internet wasn't invented for RealClimate specifically, but it's hard to imagine a site more in line with the Web's original purpose: scientific communication. An assembly of climate researchers gives readers what's lacking virtually everywhere else — straightforward presentation of the physical evidence for global warming, discussed with patience, precision and rigor.

Yes, a straightforward presentation that gives readers only one side of this controversial issue, a fact that some believe is guided by those behind RealClimate. In a February 14, 2005, article about the debate concerning Michael Mann’s “hockey stick” theory of global temperatures -- which alarmists like Gore and Schmidt base much of their hysteria on, and was thoroughly debunked by Steven McIntyre and Ross McKitrick – the Wall Street Journal reported:

On a Web site launched with the help of an environmental group (www.realclimate.org), [Mann] has sought to debunk the debunking, and counter what he calls a campaign by fossil-fuel interests to discredit his work.

The folks at RealClimate responded quickly to this accusation:

Readers of the Feb. 14th, 2005 Wall Street Journal may have gotten the impression that RealClimate is in some way affiliated with an environmental organisation. We wish to stress that although our domain is being hosted by Environmental Media Services, and our initial press release was organised for us by Fenton Communications, neither organization was in any way involved in the initial planning for RealClimate, and have never had any editorial or other control over content. Neither Fenton nor EMS has ever paid any contributor to RealClimate.org any money for any purpose at any time. Neither do they pay us expenses, buy our lunch or contract us to do research.

Maybe so, but ActivistCash.com wrote the following about EMS et al (emphasis added):

EMS is the communications arm of leftist public relations firm Fenton Communications. Based in Washington, in the same office suite as Fenton, EMS claims to be “providing journalists with the most current information on environmental issues.” A more accurate assessment might be that it spoon-feeds the news media sensationalized stories, based on questionable science, and featuring activist “experts,” all designed to promote and enrich David Fenton’s paying clients, and build credibility for the nonprofit ones. It’s a clever racket, and EMS & Fenton have been running it since 1994. […]

It’s called “black marketing,” and Environmental Media Services has become the principal reason Fenton Communications is so good at it. EMS lends an air of legitimacy to what might otherwise be dismissed (and rightly so) as fear-mongering from the lunatic fringe. In addition to pre-packaged “story ideas” for the mass media, EMS provides commentaries, briefing papers, and even a stable of experts, all carefully calculated to win points for paying clients. These “experts,” though, are also part of the ruse. Over 70% of them earn their paychecks from current or past Fenton clients, all of which have a financial stake in seeing to it that the scare tactics prevail. It’s a clever deception perpetrated on journalists who generally don’t consider do-gooder environmentalists to be capable of such blatant and duplicitous “spin.” […]

[W]hile Environmental Media Services was started, and is still run, by staffers of Fenton Communications, it was officially instituted as a “project” of the Tides Center in 1994. This gave Fenton some plausible deniability and initially shielded him from the suggestion that EMS was just a shill for his clients. It has also provided a ready-made funding mechanism for foundations, “progressive” companies, and other Fenton clients who don’t want their contributions to EMS noted for the public record [Editor’s note: despite the logistical roadblocks set up by Tides, our research still has been able to reverse-engineer several million dollars in foundation grants to EMS].

For those that have forgotten, Tides is the far-left organization Teresa Heinz-Kerry contributes millions of her former husband’s fortune to. Making things more interesting, the founder of EMS, Arlie Schardt, has “moonlighted” as a project director for Tides:

Schardt’s career connections have resulted in a collaboration that has made EMS much more influential than its small size would suggest. Schardt, moonlighting as a project director at the Tides Center, saw just a hair under $1 million directed from Tides to EMS in 1999.

Upping the ante, Schardt has ties to Al Gore and the environmental group Friends of the Earth which runs BushGreenwatch.org. This is significant, for the EMS employee that registered RealClimate’s domain name, Betsy Ensley, “manages BushGreenwatch.org, a joint EMS-MoveOn.org public awareness website.”

As for Fenton Communications, recent announcements at its website are sure to raise some eyebrows. For instance, “Fenton Communications Launches Green-Tech Division” from May 27 (emphasis added):

Fenton Communications has been deeply involved in environmental issues since its founding in 1982. The firm publicized the first reports of the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, helped environmental NGOs at the Kyoto Global Warming Summit, and worked with Vice-President Al Gore to publicize the issues.

Or how about “Ad Age: Fenton, MoveOn Form Democratic Advertising Network to Help Win 2008 Elections from May 6 (emphasis added):

Fenton Communications and client MoveOn.org announced today that the still unnamed "network" would use mainstream advertising executives to help produce advertising to help change the playing field this year. […]

At the moment, the team has no clear candidate to support. So it will go after presumptive Republican nominee Sen. John McCain. Mr. Fenton said the first ads to come out of the group will be aimed at McCain, "telling the truth about John McCain and his policies, some about McCain's reputation and his turnabout on bunch of positions as he panders to the right." […]

While MoveOn isn't going to be the only group to use the team, MoveOn will get the first ads, which the team hopes to have ready within six weeks.

Add it all up, and although RealClimate’s website is hosted and supported by an organization with ties to Al Gore, George Soros’s MoveOn.org, Tides, Friends of the Earth, and Fenton Communications, I’m sure none of these entities has any involvement in its content or funding.

If you believe that, you probably also think humans can control the temperature of the planet.

*****Update: In the comments section, I pointed out that NBer abeautifulperson notified the good people at RealClimate about this post. Schmidt replied:

Thanks for stepping in. If you go back you might want to point out the irony of a journalist not actually recognising what the source material for his original post was. A little fact checking might go a long way. - gavin

Now that's hysterical. The source material for my original piece was NewScientist and Reuters which were not only linked to, but named. Any suggestion to the contrary is another misrepresentation on Schmidt's part.

A bit later, NBer Clear Thinker commented:

I am a long time member of News Busters and can assure you that ‘a beautiful person’ has never been threatened. The problem is that whenever abp is asked a question, we only get insults as a reply. But I will admit, once a person like abp starts with the insults we are sure to do likewise. It’s only natural that people will defend themself and we are no different than you in that regard.

Anyone willing to debate the science of, or the media response to AGW is welcomed, but keep in mind that NB’s focus is bias in the media.

As an aside, NB has a wonderful archive, and if you really want to question Noel Sheppards arguments I suggest you review the archives because he has written a mountains worth of info. The only reason people don’t like his findings is they go against the present day alarmism that is AGW, Climate Crisis, or whatever the heck it’s called nowadays.

Schmidt once again responded:

Umm…as the target for the latest smear, I’ll withhold comment on your site’s penchant for character assassination in lieu of fact-based argument. But on the off chance you are serious, stick around here and see how discussions can actually evolve without people resorting to ad homs. - gavin

Character assassination? Ad homs? Smears? You mean like those in your article about my original piece such as "nonsense," "boneheaded," "foolishness," and "dumb"? Or your conclusion: "For them complexity is something to be abused rather than a challenge to be understood, underlining quite clearly (again) the difference between science and propaganda."

Mr. Schmidt seems to forget that he published an article attacking me at his blog on July 12, and that the above was posted six days later. I guess along with irony, arithmetic calculations, and important pieces of legislation related to his work, chronology also eludes Schmidt.

Yet, this shouldn't be at all surprising, for this is standard operating procedure for climate alarmists: they are allowed to besmirch, belittle, and denegrade anybody they want with total impunity. However, if you respond, you're guilty of ad hominems.

Honestly, do my tax dollars really pay this man's salary?

*****Update II: Schmidt continues to defend his erroneous assertion that I confused aerosols with photochemical smog even though neither of the sources I linked to referred to photochemical smog.

First, he answered a question from NBer PopTech:

Gavin, can you show me where Noel used the word ‘Photochemical’ in his post.

[Response: I, unlike, Mr. Shepherd read the EPA report that the media piece was based on (linked above). It is a report about about ozone and photochemical smog. I would advise you and Mr. Shepherd to check your sources before pontificating. - gavin]

Well, he's at least getting closer to the truth here, and that is that I was referring to media reports of the studies involved and not the studies themselves. However, Schmidt still hasn't addressed my point that using the IPCC's definition of aerosols, and Wikipedia's description of photochemical smog, they are indeed interrelated.

In fact, a person named Ryan Sullivan took issue with Schmidt's claim about photochemical smog and aerosols in a July 14 comment to his hit piece on me (emphasis added):

I think in your attempt to clarify the issues you have confused things a bit by over-simplifying.

Your statement that “aerosols are not smog” is not correct. Aerosols are an important component of photochemical smog, forming through similar reactions involving hydroxyl radicals, nitric oxides, ozone, VOCs, and sunlight that also produce the gaseous component of smog. These secondary aerosols have important impacts on visibility, health, and regional climate.

Also, stating that aerosols are “dominated by sulphate emissions from coal burning power plants” is overly simplistic and inaccurate. Yes, coal power plants are major sources of primary combustion aerosols (i.e. soot, coal fly ash) and also sulphur dioxide which can produce secondary sulphate aerosols. But sulphate aerosols are not the major aerosol component by particle mass or number. The lagest [sic] sources of aerosol mass are from sea salt and mineral dust. By number, it is typically a mix of sulphate, nitrate, ammonium, and a wide spectrum of carbonaceous (elemental and organic carbon) compounds. Most tropospheric aerosols are internal mixtures of these components, as opposed to pure single-component aerosols, which is how climate models frequently inaccurately represent them. This mis-representation and can have significant ramifications for estimating the direct and indirect effects of aerosols on climate.

Sorry to be nit-picky but I was surprised to see such inaccurate and simplistic statements made on this blog which typically goes to great lengths to be both detailed and accurate. These misconceptions regarding aerosols are commonly stated not just in the media but also in the atmospheric sciences community and are very troubling.

Fascinating, wouldn't you agree?

On a personal note, Schmidt doesn't understand the other journalistic courtesy of properly spelling the name of an author you're referring to. I guess we should add that to the growing list of things that somehow elude this person that has so much power concerning this controversial issue.

*****Update III: NBer PopTech has Schmidt backtracking about his photochemical smog/aerosol position bigtime! It marvelously begins with a PT question:

Gavin, you seem to be confused with the multiple definitions of some words. By admitting aerosols are pollution then you are admitting that when aerosols are present in the air and restrict light they can be defined as smog as defined by NOAA:

Smog: “Originally smog meant a mixture of smoke and fog. Now, it means air that has restricted visibility due to pollution…” - NOAA.

Thus your statement that “Aerosols are not smog” is not truthful.

[Response: I’m sure you are holding NB to as high a definitional standard. But literally you are confused. Aerosols are any atmospheric particle - sulphates, nitrates, dust, pollen, organics, sea salt etc. - they are not exclusive to anthropogenic sources and for the most part are not pollution (sea salt in the southern ocean? dust in the Atlantic?), though of course they can be (especially in Beijing now, Pittsburgh in the 1950s etc). Smog, as all the definitions state, is an amorphous mix but it isn’t specifically aerosols and in the context of the original press report referred specifically to ozone. The confusion is not mine but Shepherd’s who took a paper about sulphate reductions in Europe and a report about ozone in the US and thought they were the same thing. My statement is literally true - Shepherd’s very confused. How about acknowledging that before accusing me of lying? - gavin]

How delicious. Now, finally, Schmidt is linking to the article I did. About time. Only took seven days. And, his comment "The confusion is not mine but Shepherd’s who took a paper about sulphate reductions in Europe and a report about ozone in the US and thought they were the same thing" is totally absurd, for the point of my article was how contradictory these reports were NOT THAT THEY WERE THEY SAME!

Schmidt is dissembling in front of our eyes, folks, just as he always does when confronted with facts. And this is why he and his group got DESTROYED by Lindzen, Crichton, and Stott in New York City last year!

This is really getting good; come on in, the water's fine!

*****Update IV: More dissembling by Schmidt who now is finally admitting that "Aerosols can be pollutants, they can be part of smog." Hmmm. That was a big peeve of his last Saturday, but NBer PopTech has gotten him to change his mind on this:

Gavin, you seem to be contradicting yourself:

“First they confuse aerosols with photochemical smog. Both are pollutants”

“Aerosols are any atmospheric particle - sulphates, nitrates, dust, pollen, organics, sea salt etc. - they are not exclusive to anthropogenic sources and for the most part are not pollution”

First you define them as pollution and then for the most part not. So which is it? It is clear from the many and varying definitions of smog, it can be composed of Aerosols.

“Smog, as all the definitions state, is an amorphous mix…”

Actually all the definitions do not state this…

Smog - “a mixture of fog and smoke or other airborne pollutants such as exhaust fumes” (Encarta)

Smog - “fog or haze intensified by smoke or other atmospheric pollutants.” - Compact Oxford English Dictionary

Smog - “air pollution, especially in cities, that is caused by a mixture of smoke, gases and chemicals” - Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary

Smog - “a haze caused by the effect of sunlight on foggy air that has been polluted by vehicle exhaust gases and industrial smoke” - Wordsmyth

Smog - “Mixture of particulate matter and chemical pollutants in the lower atmosphere, usually over urban areas.” - American Geography Glossary

Smog - “Originally smog meant a mixture of smoke and fog. Now, it means air that has restricted visibility due to pollution.” - NOAA.

You are correct your post is confusing because it states that Aerosols are not smog but are a pollutant, yet the definition of the word smog allows for it to be defined as composed of Aerosols and you then change your mind and claim it is not really pollution. This sort of inaccurate information coupled with links to an unreliable source such as Wikipedia makes one question the scientific integrity of this site. Someone reading you post would come to believe that smog cannot be composed of Aerosols which is not true.

[Response: You seem to be under the impression that all words must define single things that must either be exactly equal to or exactly orthogonal to all other words. Aerosols can be pollutants, they can be part of smog, they can also be natural. However they are not the same as smog - you cannot use the two words interchangeably. The two studies that were being discussed were related to sulphates (mainly) in Europe and tropospheric ozone in the US. Ozone is not an aerosol, though it does create photochemical smog and is also a pollutant. I’m sorry if this is confusing to you, but keep reading around and maybe it will get clearer. Meanwhile, I am still waiting for your acknowledgment that the equating of aerosols and smog was incorrect in the NB piece. - gavin]

Extraordinary equivocation from someone that's supposed to be a scientist: Aerosols can be pollutants, they can be part of smog, they can also be natural. However they are not the same as smog - you cannot use the two words interchangeably...I am still waiting for your acknowledgment that the equating of aerosols and smog was incorrect in the NB piece.

And I'm still waiting for Schmidt to acknowledge that I didn't equate aerosols and smog; it isn't so all because he said I did.

*****Update V: Over the weekend, Schmidt demonstrated how he manipulates comments at RC, and how his website is anything BUT a free and open discussion about global warming.

On Saturday evening, NB's Clear Thinker tried to submit a second comment to RC. He posted it here. In it, he asked a specific question of Schmidt concerning what the NASA employee had written in his July 12 post:

Could you reply to Sheppard’s contention that your arithmetic was flawed concerning temperatures rising in Europe due to cleaner air not having an impact on global warming? Since average temperatures are a collection of data-points from around the world, if one continent’s temperatures are rising, doesn’t this impact the average? Isn’t this basic arithmetic?

It appears Schmidt wasn't very comfortable with CT's comment for it didn't get posted at RC for at least 18 hours, with several submitted later than CT's getting published first.

Maybe more disquieting, although CT was responding to direct questions by another member, Schmidt has chosen not to respond to CT's question; this is not due to Schmidt's absence as he has responded to two other comments since CT's was submitted.

CT resubmitted his question Sunday evening. Schmidt still hasn't responded. Bear in mind that in his answer to CT's first post, Schmidt wrote:

I’ll withhold comment on your site’s penchant for character assassination in lieu of fact-based argument. But on the off chance you are serious, stick around here and see how discussions can actually evolve without people resorting to ad homs.

CT did stick around, and saw his question get buried for at least 18 hours thereby reducing the likelihood that readers would see it...and Schmidt refused to answer a pertinent and direct question. Is this how conversations evolve at RC?

In the end, the answer is yes. From what I've been told by scientists all over the world that have tried to post at RC, the "mods" decide what will get through, and, as Pielke pointed out, comments are freely edited by them.

This all led by someone that works for the U.S. government.
Also interesting are the comments to Sheppard's blog at Newsbusters. So many people complaining that RealClimate will not allow their posts to run. That's what RealClimate does.

While I in no way agree with everything that is blogged at Newsbusters (although they usually do a splendid job with CAGW), at least I can follow the arguments that crop up in the comments sections and know that comments have not been disallowed. I don't think they disallow any political or other type of opinion from being expressed. At RealClimate one never knows what has been disallowed and "moderated" out. They are famous for not allowing opposing points of view that may be difficult for them to counter. One only learns of them when someone complains on another blog and posts the disallowed comment there. RealClimate has the right to disallow any post they want. But they also open themselves up to charges of intellectual cowardice and dishonesty.

07-21-08, 09:09 AM
More moronic "news" stories written only to provide false "evidence" for CAGW:


Nutty Story of the Day: “Global Warming” is Killing the Penguins in Antarctica
20 07 2008

You have to wonder how the press allows stories like these to get published without some basic fact checking. I’m reminded of the recent CBS News story about “resonance” and global warming causing more earthquakes.

From the UK Sunday Mirror:Plight of the p-p-p penguins
By Richard Cooper 20/07/2008

This shivering penguin is just one of thousands close to death in Antarctica. Rain storms have killed tens of thousands of chicks - and scientists blame global warming. New-born penguins take 40 days to grow water-proof feathers. They can withstand snow, but if rain soaks them to the skin, they die of cold. Experts yesterday said 400 Adelie penguin chicks have washed up dead on Brazil’s beaches after migrating 2,500 miles to avoid the rain. The Emperor penguin - star of the hit film March Of The Penguins - is also under threat. Antarctic temperatures have risen by 3C in the last 50 years to an average of - 14.7C (5.5F). The penguin population has fallen by up to 80 per cent and, if the downpours go on, they will be extinct within 10 years. Dozens of migrant penguins are being treated at Rio de Janeiro’s Niterio Zoo. Biologist Erli Costa said: “This is all due to global warming.”

That’s the entire story, no other sources are given. But I did find the source Associated Press story here[:]


Interestingly, the AP story has no mention of “rain” or of “baby chick penguins”. There were mentions of other causes such as food supply and pollution as possible causes. It seems Mr. Cooper of the Sunday Mirror has the only mention of “rain” and “chicks” and “80 percent population decrease”. I think this story from the Falkland Islands may be his source for that number though[:]


Ok let’s do some fact checking to see if there is really anything going on in Antarctica causing an “80 percent population decrease”.

First lets look for a collaborating research story, how about the best organization on Birds, the National Audubon Society? Surely they’ll have this story. But a check of their web page at: http://www.audubon.org/ shows no mention of this.

Ok maybe Greenpeace? Nope, nothing there. British Antaractic survey? http://www.antarctica.ac.uk/ Nope though they have a nice picture of a penguins but no mention of the crisis.

At the very least, let’s check the temperature in Antarctica, It’s winter there. Here’s the temp map as of publication of this blog posting:

Temperatures in degrees Centigrade.
Source: University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Antarctic Weather Stations Project

Hmmm. Warmest temperature is -6° C, it is rather difficult to get rain under that sort of temperature. Unfortunately I did not find an easy to decipher archive of temperatures for the last few days, but again given it is winter there, the prospect of above freezing air temperatures seems unlikely.

And then there is this statement from the story: “Experts yesterday said 400 Adelie penguin chicks have washed up dead on Brazil’s beaches after migrating 2,500 miles to avoid the rain.”


But here is the clincher from the AP story:

Costa said the vast majority of penguins turning up are baby birds that have just left the nest and are unable to out-swim the strong ocean currents they encounter while searching for food.

Mr. Cooper, your story is all wet. The Mirror should issue a retraction.
Of course there will be no correction or retraction. Most of the MSM is in the CAGW propaganda business. This is hardly an isolated incident.

07-21-08, 09:56 AM
I have updated this post and reposted it as a new post because people who have already read the old post may not see the updates. The old post has been deleted.

The Great Global Warming Swindle's Great Controversy:


Channel 4 to be censured over controversial climate film

Watchdog finds documentary was unfair to scientists but did not mislead viewers

Owen Gibson, media correspondent
The Guardian,
Saturday July 19, 2008

Channel 4 misrepresented some of the world's leading climate scientists in a controversial documentary that claimed global warming was a conspiracy and a fraud, the UK's media regulator will rule next week.

In a long-awaited judgment following a 15-month inquiry, Ofcom is expected to censure the network over its treatment of some scientists in the programme, The Great Global Warming Swindle, which sparked outcry from environmentalists.

Complaints about privacy and fairness from the government's former chief scientist, Sir David King, and the Nobel peace prize-winning Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change will be upheld on almost all counts, the Guardian has learned.

But it is understood that Channel 4 will still claim victory because the ultimate verdict on a separate complaint about accuracy, which contained 131 specific points and ran to 270 pages, will find that it did not breach the regulator's broadcasting code and did not materially mislead viewers.

The detail of the ruling is expected to criticise Channel 4 over some aspects of the controversial programme, made by the director Martin Durkin, but executives will argue that the key test of whether or not it was right to broadcast the programme has been passed.

One source said both sides would be able to claim victory after a bitter dispute that has raged in newspapers and online since the programme, billed as "a definitive response" to Al Gore's An Inconvenient Truth, was first broadcast in March last year.

The programme was criticised by scientists, who claimed it fundamentally misrepresented the evidence about global warming, that it rehashed discredited old arguments and manipulated data and charts to make its case.

The IPCC, King and other scientists including Dr Carl Wunsch, a climate expert at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, complained to the regulator over the way they were represented. Ofcom is expected to find in favour of King's complaint and three out of five of the IPCC's. One is expected to be thrown out and the fifth will be partially upheld.

In its judgment on King's complaint, Ofcom will say: "Channel 4 unfairly attributed to the former chief scientist, David King, comments he had not made and criticised him for them and also failed to provide him an opportunity to reply".

In the programme, the concluding voiceover from the climate change sceptic Fred Singer claimed "the chief scientist of the UK" was "telling people that by the end of the century, the only habitable place on Earth will be the Antarctic and humanity may survive thanks to some breeding couples who moved to the Antarctic ... it would be hilarious if it weren't so sad".

King has never made such a statement and it is believed Singer confused his views with those of the contrarian scientist James Lovelock. King did once say that "the last time the Earth had this much C02, the only place habitable was the Antarctic".

Addressing the IPCC's complaint over 21 pages, Ofcom will rule that the programme "made significant allegations ... questioning its credibility and failed to offer it timely and appropriate opportunity to respond".

But Channel 4 has argued that the organisation had refused to cooperate with the programme-makers.

After the broadcast, Wunsch said the programme was "masquerading as a science documentary when it should be regarded as a political polemic" and was "as close to pure propaganda as anything since world war two".

He claimed he had been duped into appearing and his comments had been misleadingly edited.

The Ofcom ruling is expected to find that Wunsch was misled about the tone and content of the programme, but that his views were accurately represented within it. Durkin, who had previously made other controversial documentaries, including Against Nature and the Rise and Fall of GM, vigorously defended the broadcast.

"The death of this theory will be painful and ugly. But it will die. Because it is wrong, wrong, wrong," he wrote.

Channel 4 justified the broadcast by saying it was a useful contribution to a timely debate, arguing that it had a tradition for iconoclastic programming and had also aired programmes supporting the case for man-made climate change.

The producers claimed that after it was broadcast, Channel 4 received a record number of phone calls that were six to one in favour of the arguments made. The film was subsequently sold to 21 other countries. A global DVD release went ahead despite protests from scientists.

A Channel 4 spokesman said: "We wouldn't comment on any Ofcom ruling in advance of its publication." Ofcom declined to comment.
As we know, the producers of the show had already admitted to a few errors (such as the amount of CO2 emitted by volcanoes) and corrected them for future broadcasts and the DVD.

Also taken out of of subsequent broadcasts and the DVD were Carl Wunsch's comments although they were totally valid and not taken out of context. The producers had produced emails which proved Wunsch was not misled as to the intentions of the program to debunk CAGW so upholding Wunsch's complaint in any way is bogus on two grounds. His participation was cut as a courtesy to him but it was in no way required by journalistic ethical standards.

It appears that Singer was a little confused about what King said but that is, at most, a very minor quibble. (Update: see below)

And it's difficult to blame the film for what it may have said wrong (if there was anything wrong) about the IPCC if the IPCC refused to even talk to them.

We all remember how Al Gore's "documentary" has admitted, apologized for and corrected its many times more errors, right? rotfl

There has probably never been a documentary that was errorless. The Great Global Warming Swindle, however, is one of the best, especially after showing a willingness to correct real errors, something I've never seen any other documentary, least of all Al Gore's paragon of falsehoods, ever do.

The real question is why have only films, TV shows or books that go against the "consensus" been subjected to this kind of intense nitpicking official or quasi-official scrutiny (Bjorn Lomborg's brilliant book, The Skeptical Evironmentalist, also was attacked in this way in Denmark and it was also ultimately vindicated).


It appears the error about King was not really an error (see this 2004 article):


Antarctica is likely to be the world's only habitable continent by the end of this century if global warming remains unchecked, the Government's chief scientist, Professor Sir David King, said last week.

Is the great error that Singer said King said Antarctica will be the only habitable place on Earth when King actually said Antarctica is likely to be the only habitable continent? Wow, what a terrible slander! :rolleyes: Furthermore, if The Independent's indirect quote of King was wrong, how is that the fault of the film?

I read in another article ( http://www.pressgazette.co.uk/story.asp?sectioncode=1&storycode=41733&c=1 ) that the supposed great sin against the IPCC is that the program said it was politically driven. What is false about that? There's ample evidence for it and the IPCC refused to even talk to the filmmakers who tried to get their side.

Also from that story:

In a statement, Channel 4 said it welcomed Ofcom's ruling that the documentary did not materially mislead the audience.

The Channel 4 head of documentaries, Hamish Mykura, said: "This film made a valid contribution to the debate on climate change. Ofcom’s ruling explicitly recognises Channel 4’s right to show the programme and the paramount importance of broadcasters being able to challenge orthodoxies and explore controversial subject matter.

On the impartiality ruling, Mykura added: "We accept Ofcom’s judgement that we should have included alternative views within part five of the programme which dealt specifically with matters of public policy."

But he said the broadcaster was "disappointed" that Ofcom upheld the fairness complaints, and insisted the programme-makers had acted responsibly.

"We believe the programme-makers’ pre-broadcast correspondence with [Professor Wunsch] spelt out in the clearest possible terms the programme’s content and nature.

"The IPCC were given the opportunity to respond to matters raised in the programme but did not respond to or acknowledge the programme- makers’ approach.

"The comments attributed to Sir David King by one of the contributors to the programme were based on widespread press reports that had not been challenged or corrected prior to the programme’s broadcast."
Indeed, even on the points on which the program was found to be "unfair" are bogus.

I cannot see how the filmmakers were in any way unfair or did not act responsibly. The few legitimate errors in the original film were corrected for subsequent broadcasts and the DVD. Wunsch's comments were removed even though the filmmakers had no ethical requirement to do so (they bent over backward to be "fair" in this instance). The remaining "errors" and "unfairness" were no such things. Would that all documentary filmmakers were this fair and responsible.

07-21-08, 10:40 AM
Comment on The Great Global Warming Swindle controversy:


Monday 21 July 2008
Brendan O’Neill

The rise and rise of Climate Blasphemy

Today’s Ofcom ruling on The Great Global Warming Swindle strengthens the censorious forcefield around climate change experts.

The blasphemy laws are dead and buried in Britain. Courtesy of the Criminal Justice and Immigration Act, which passed into law on 8 July 2008, it is no longer a common law offence to speak or publish any contemptuous, reviling, scurrilous or ludicrous words relating to God, Jesus Christ or the Bible. Thank Christ (or whoever) for that.

Yet just as religious blasphemy collapses under the weight of satirical operas featuring Jesus Christ in a nappy and shelf-hogging books about why God is dead, or a bastard, or both, so a new form of scientific blasphemy is emerging to take its place.

You can say what you like about Jesus, Mary and Joseph, but say anything reviling, scurrilous or ludicrous about a climate change scientist and you will be punished. You won’t receive a literal lashing, but you will get a metaphorical one. Speak ill of a climate expert and you’re likely to be stuck in the stocks of the public media and branded as a fact-denying, truth-distorting threat to public morals.

Increasingly in the climate change debate, no dissent can be brooked. I mean none. That is why, from the thousands and thousands of hours of TV programming devoted to climate change issues last year – from news reports on the threat of global warming to the lifestyle makeover shows imploring us to Go Green – only one has been singled out for censure. The one that questioned whether climate change is occurring. The Great Global Warming Swindle by maverick filmmaker Martin Durkin.

Today, the Office of Communications (Ofcom) has published a lengthy document censuring Channel 4 for showing Durkin’s film on 8 March 2007. Yet what is striking about Ofcom’s ruling is that it slaps Channel 4’s wrists, not for any inaccuracies in Durkin’s film (of which, it is claimed, there are many), but for its ‘unfair treatment’ of climate change experts.

Ofcom rejected complaints that Durkin’s film was factually inaccurate on the basis that it did not ‘materially mislead the audience so as to cause harm or offence’ (1). Yet it upheld or partly upheld complaints by Sir David King (Britain’s former chief scientific adviser), Professor Carl Wunsch (of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology), and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, all of whom say they were treated unfairly by the film.

Yet, as far as I can tell, King, Wunsch and the IPCC – an extremely powerful body which, come on, is surely robust enough to deal with one TV documentary having a pop at it – were simply submitted to the rough-and-tumble of testy journalistic debate.

Part of King’s complaint is that during a lively interview in The Great Global Warming Swindle one of its contributors, Professor Frederick Singer, said we had now reached the mad situation where: ‘[T]he chief scientist of the UK [is] telling people that by the end of the century the only habitable place on the earth will be the Antarctic. And humanity may survive thanks to some breeding couples who moved to the Antarctic.’ (2)

King says he didn’t say that. Well, not in so many words. What he actually said during a testimony to a House of Commons Select Committee in 2004 was this: ‘Fifty-five million years ago was a time when there was no ice on the earth; the Antarctic was the most habitable place for mammals, because it was the coolest place, and the rest of the earth was rather inhabitable because it was so hot. It is estimated that it [the carbon dioxide level] was roughly 1,000 parts per million then, and the important thing is that if we carry on business as usual we will hit 1,000 parts per million around the end of the century.’ (3)

In short? If we keep on driving, flying, building and consuming then the earth in 90 years’ time will resemble the earth 55million years ago – when the Antarctic was ‘the most habitable place for mammals’. Okay, King didn’t say the Antarctic would become the ‘only habitable’ place for humans but he did very strongly imply it would become the ‘most habitable’ place.

And in a speech to the Climate Group in April 2004, he reportedly went a step farther. The Independent on Sunday of 2 May 2004 reported: ‘Antarctica is likely to be the world’s only habitable continent by the end of this century if global warming remains unchecked, the government’s chief scientist Sir David King said last week.’ (4) [Emphasis added.] King never complained about that report.

As for the second sentence in Frederick Singer’s contested interview – where he said ‘And humanity may survive thanks to some breeding couples who moved to the Antarctic’ – this actually refers to a statement by James Lovelock, who said in 2006: ‘Before this century is over, billions of us will die, and the few breeding pairs of people that survive will be in the Arctic where the climate remains tolerable.’ (5) Channel 4 says that, given that David King is on record as saying Antarctica could be the ‘only habitable place on earth’ and ‘the rest of the globe could not sustain human life’ (6), it was not unreasonable to deduce that he, like Lovelock, was of the view that humanity could only survive if it started breeding in the Antarctic.

Maybe. Maybe not. That point is up for debate. But it is hard to avoid the conclusion that in Durkin’s film, King was simply paraphrased – and, yes, ridiculed – as part of a provocative, polemical interview. That kind of thing happens all the time.

Professor Wunsch complained that he was not told beforehand that the film was a polemic against global warming theories. That is unfortunate, but again it is quite common in journalism. Reporters frequently do not divulge their entire motivation when setting up interviews, because they know that if they did some interviewees would tell them to get stuffed.

[Note by movielib: The writer of this article is apparently unaware that the filmmakers, in email correspondence with Wunsch prior to Wunsch's agreement to appear on the program, made it perfectly clear that the program would oppose the "consensus" side. They couldn't have been more fair. I posted a copy of the email last year: http://forum.dvdtalk.com/showthread.php?p=7709387 ; and see http://www.jennifermarohasy.com/blog/archives/002063.html : from email of Swindle's producers to Carl Wunsch:

I wanted to email you to outline the approach we will be taking with our film to clarify our position. We are making a feature length documentary about global warming for Channel Four in the UK. The aim of the film is to examine critically the notion that recent global warming is primarily caused by industrial emissions of CO2. It explores the scientific evidence which jars with this hypothesis and explores alternative theories such as solar induced climate change. Given the seemingly inconclusive nature of the evidence, it examines the background to the apparent consensus on this issue, and highlights the dangers involved, especially to developing nations, of policies aimed at limiting industrial growth.
How much clearer could the producers have been about their intentions?]

Part of the IPCC’s complaint is that one of the film’s interviewees – Professor Philip Stott – said: ‘The IPCC, like any UN body, is political. The final conclusions are politically driven.’ (7) I’m sorry, but that is simply legitimate political criticism, whether the IPCC likes it or not. Why is a UN body, which is staffed by hundreds of people and funded by millions of pounds and which has access to thousands of normally compliant journalists, complaining to Ofcom about a 90-minute documentary shown on Channel 4? What is it saying exactly? That no one may criticise it, ever?

Of course it is very serious when journalists wilfully or maliciously misrepresent people’s views, and when they do they should be reprimanded. Yet paraphrasing, mocking, criticising and not giving the entire reason for your investigations… if all of these journalistic tactics were censured every time they occurred, there would be no TV reporting left. Certainly there would be no documentaries worth watching.

The Ofcom report sends a clear message: climate experts are off limits. You can get your facts wrong; you can even use questionable graphs – but you must not be ‘unfair’ to The Experts. It is striking how similar the new Climate Blasphemy is to the old religious blasphemy. It, too, is based on protecting named individuals from ‘scurrilous’ or ‘hurtful’ words. Those who commit Climate Blasphemy are said to have been duped or had their palms greased by wicked oil companies – the contemporary equivalent of saying they are possessed by the devil. And their utterances are said to threaten the survival of mankind – by giving people a green light to continue acting in an eco-irresponsible fashion – just as the old blasphemers were accused of jeopardising the saving of mankind with their warped, wicked words.

You don’t have to endorse Durkin’s film, or the ‘alternative’ climate-change theories that he and others have put forward (I, for one, do not), to be concerned about the censuring of anyone who challenges any part of the politics or science of climate change today. Rather, this is about upholding openness, scepticism and the right to question everything, in the world of journalism and in the world of science.

Given today’s blasphemous atmosphere, it is not surprising that serious voices are now calling for a law of blasphemy on environmental matters. Earlier this year in Philosophy Now, Paul Keeling said it might be time to restrict the ‘mockery of nature’, by which he means ‘an insincere, disrespectful or trivialising portrayal of nature’ (8). Such mockery ‘implicitly excuse[s] and perpetuate[s] our abuse of the natural world’, he said, and by reining it in we could get rid of car adverts and holiday adverts and presumably pesky TV documentaries, too.

We’ve only just been liberated, far too late, from England’s archaic laws of religious blasphemy. Let us not submit so easily to the informal laws of Climate Blasphemy emerging all around us.

07-21-08, 10:49 AM
"The Happening" for alarmists (SATIRE):


Mystery: Global Warming Scaremongers Vanish!
Written by Clifford Rutley
Story written: 19 July 2008

You're Next Hippy!

The FBI, CIA, MI5, James Bond and many other crime, investigation and intelligence organisations have had their work cut out for them this week, as fake tax pushing so called enviro-MENTAL-ists have started to disappear.

The first to go was Al Gore, who disappeared from his bed in the middle of the night, leaving his wife all upset. Investigators searched his huge mansion, which uses as much energy in a month as 100+ normal homes in a year, but found nothing but a few stray branches and leaves on their mink skin and fox puppy fur carpets.

Then David De Rothschild disappeared whilst on a walk through a hippy wig wham. Nothing remained but a few vines and some puddles of sap. And then there are the multitudes of lesser well known carbon tax pushers who have started to dry up almost as fast as their evidence that man is causing climate change by putting out the life giving gas called carbon dioxide that plants breath and turn into food and oxygen.

Some have suggested that all the various plants and trees of this planet have seen these people as imminent threats to their future survival, as they all need carbon dioxide to breathe and grow more luscious and more bountiful. Therefore, they have started grabbing all of these people and extracting the carbon from their useless misguided, brainless do-gooding bodies instead - which seems a fitting end to such hypocrites who pretend to be saving the planet, by taxing one of the essential elements for life. It seems that Mother Nature herself has acted to rid us all of these nutters, once and for all.

Oh Gaia Earth spirit, we thank you for this blessing!

07-21-08, 10:54 AM
More humor:


Global Gorecaster's 10-year challenge
Posted: July 21, 2008
1:00 am Eastern
Doug Powers

There is a new kind of 10-year challenge that we must will into reality. This is a challenge that is of utmost importance – a clarion call to all concerned citizens – and here it is: Within 10 years, the world must dedicate itself to completely ignoring eco salesmen peddling 10 year challenges.

In a speech last week, Al Gore called for a switch of the nation's electricity production to wind, solar and other carbon-free sources within 10 years. Al just happened to have some of these things for sale in the lobby following the show.

Gore showed up to the speech with a carbon nightmare of a motorcade, complete with two Lincoln Town Cars and a Suburban SUV. Would it be too much to ask that Gore at least pretend to believe what he preaches? But that's a matter for an entirely different 10-year challenge.

Prior to the speech, Gore had encouraged all attendees to walk, ride a bicycle or take public transportation. Now it's apparent why: He needed the carbon offsets.

To achieve Gore's 10-year vision for America, the government would have to mandate something like British Prime Minister Gordon Brown's "eco towns." The U.K. has plans underway for 100,000 homes in five different communities, with the goal of being completely "carbon neutral."

The air will be clean, the birds will be chirping Chopin and all people will be holding hands singing Kum ba Yah while it rains rose petals as chocolate bunnies frolic in the tulip patch. Who could argue with that?

When eco towns are proposed in the United States (where Europe treads American liberals are dying to follow), and guess who wants to be the realtor you'll be paying a 50 percent commission to? I'll give you a hint – he won the popular vote in 2000, looks like he swallowed Alfred Hitchcock and believes it's not hypocrisy to fly in a private jet provided you're flying over somebody who's planting a tree.

The Times Online reported last month that in Gordon Brown's green communities motorists will face fines for driving, fees for parking at the edge of town, charges for driving at peak times, penalties for driving too much, etc.

I wouldn't mind at all if residency in "eco towns" were voluntary, but when the government's involved, it never stops at "voluntary" and the control won't end with only cars. There is no way to control someone's automobile usage without monitoring and restricting every other aspect of that person's life. This is by design – or at the very least what happens when the natural inclination of governments, demagogues and/or environmental megalomaniacs to drift toward totalitarianism is left unchecked.

The radical environmental movement is about absolute political and social control, and peddling lies and extreme propaganda until a brainwashed national cult is born. It's Stalinism in a biodegradable dress – and Al Gore is turning into Radical Rupaul of the Rainforest right before our very eyes.

On the lighter side, according to Robert Redford, there's a different, less drastic way we can help save the planet: Poetry.

The "actor/activist" (today's redundancy is sponsored by Reese's Peanut Butter Cups – chocolate and peanut butter – two great tastes that taste great together!) is taking the fight to global warming in the form of poetry competitions.

NPR.org reports that Redford has spent at least 30 years "fighting on behalf of the environment." With all the hurricanes, volcanoes, tsunamis, earthquakes, droughts and floods, the environment seems to be able to handle its own self-defense just fine without the assistance of a liberal actor.

Redford's Sundance Preserve is sponsoring "Brave New Voices: Youth Speaks! 11th International Youth Poetry Slam."

Though I may no longer qualify as "youth," I'm nonetheless in a helping mood, so here are a small variety of submissions to Mr. Redford's competition:


In 10 years the oceans will be dead,
once said an actor named Ted
It's now 20 years later,
the oceans are greater
and the only thing dead is Ted's cred

"Send me lots of money this morning,
to save the environment from warming."
Al Gore, he rejoices, and birds they sing
because stupid actors will fall for anything

Bear trapped on ice sheet
couldn't leave in time, now stuck
Dang that bear is slow
or …

Buy carbon credits
to save the Earth from ruin
Private jet takes off
It feels so good to know that I just did my part to fight global warming, and it didn't even require a 10-year challenge.

07-21-08, 04:46 PM
A new study to be ignored:


July 21, 2008
Oceanic Influences On Recent Continental Warming - An Important New Research Paper: Compo and Sardeshmukh, 2008

Filed under: Climate Change Forcings & Feedbacks — Roger Pielke Sr. @ 7:00 am

Climate Science has previously weblogged on an important new perspective on the role of regional climate forcings on climate variability and change which involves ocean-atmosphere interactions (e.g. see and see). Now there is a very significant new paper on this subject by this research group which should attract major attention. It is

Compo,G.P., and P.D. Sardeshmukh, 2008: Oceanic influences on recent continental warming. Climate Dynamics, in press.

The abstract reads

“Evidence is presented that the recent worldwide land warming has occurred largely in response to a worldwide warming of the oceans rather than as a direct response to increasing greenhouse gases (GHGs) over land. Atmospheric model simulations of the last half-century with prescribed observed ocean temperature changes, but without prescribed GHG changes, account for most of the land warming. The oceanic influence has occurred through hydrodynamic-radiative teleconnections, primarily by moistening and warming the air over land and increasing the downward longwave radiation at the surface. The oceans may themselves have warmed from a combination of natural and anthropogenic influences.”

The conclusion of the paper reads

“In summary, our results emphasize the significant role of remote oceanic influences, rather than the direct local effect of anthropogenic radiative forcings, in the recent continental warming. They suggest that the recent oceanic warming has caused the continents to warm through a different set of mechanisms than usually identified with the global impacts of SST changes. It has increased the humidity of the atmosphere, altered the atmospheric vertical motion and associated cloud fields, and perturbed the longwave and shortwave radiative fluxes at the continental surface. While continuous global measurements of most of these changes are not available through the 1961-2006 period, some humidity observations are available and do show upward trends over the continents. These include near-surface observations (Dai 2006) as well as satellite radiance measurements sensitive to upper tropospheric moisture (Soden et al. 2005).”

Although not a focus of this study, the degree to which the oceans themselves have recently warmed due to increased GHG, other anthropogenic, natural solar and volcanic forcings, or internal multi-decadal climate variations is a matter of active investigation (Stott et al. 2006; Knutson et al. 2006; Pierce et al. 2006). Reliable assessments of these contributing factors depend critically on reliable estimations of natural climate variability, either from the observational record or from coupled climate model simulations without anthropogenic forcings. Several recent studies suggest that the observed SST variability may be misrepresented in the coupled models used in preparing the IPCC’s Fourth Assessment Report, with substantial errors on interannual and decadal scales (e.g., Shukla et al. 2006, DelSole, 2006; Newman 2007; Newman et al. 2008). There is a hint of an underestimation of simulated decadal SST variability even in the published IPCC Report (Hegerl et al. 2007, FAQ9.2 Figure 1). Given these and other misrepresentations of natural oceanic variability on decadal scales (e.g., Zhang and McPhaden 2006), a role for natural causes of at least some of the recent oceanic warming should not be ruled out.

Regardless of whether or not the rapid recent oceanic warming has occurred largely from anthropogenic or natural influences, our study highlights its importance in accounting for the recent observed continental warming. Perhaps the most important conclusion to be drawn from our analysis is that the recent acceleration of global warming may not be occurring in quite the manner one might have imagined. The indirect and substantial role of the oceans in causing the recent continental warming emphasizes the need to generate reliable projections of ocean temperature changes over the next century, in order to generate more reliable projections of not just the global mean temperature and precipitation changes (Barsugli et al. 2006), but also regional climate changes.”

This is a major scientific conclusion, and the authors should be recognized for this achievement. If these results are robust, it further documents that a regional perspective of climate variabilty and change must be adopted, rather than a focus on a global average surface temperature change, as emphasized in the 2007 IPCC WG1 report. This work also provides support for the perspective on climate sensitivity that Roy Spencer has reported on in his powerpoint presentation last week (see).
This is reported on Roger Pielke Sr.'s blog. Pielke used to have respect from both sides because he was sort of in the middle on CAGW, has impeccable credentials, a long and distinguished career and has always treated everyone with great respect. But lately, he seems to be more and more becoming a skeptic and is also becoming more critical of alarmist tactics (while losing none of his respectful tone), particularly of the antics at RealClimate. I am completely convinced that this is because of the way the science is going. He is now being increasingly attacked by alarmists. So it goes.

07-21-08, 06:43 PM
Global warming will cause less and weaker, not more and stronger, hurricanes.


Scientists Predict Global Warming Will Reduce Number of Hurricanes
Written By: John Dale Dunn, M.D., J.D.
Published In: Environment & Climate News
Publication Date: August 1, 2008
Publisher: The Heartland Institute

Global warming is likely to reduce the number of hurricanes that occur each year, according to two new studies by forecasters who previously claimed global warming would cause more hurricanes.

Knutson: Fewer Future Hurricanes

Global warming is not to blame for the spike in hurricanes that occurred earlier this decade, research meteorologist Tom Knutson reported in the June issue of Nature Geoscience. Knutson also reported global warming will likely reduce the number of future hurricanes.

According to Knutson, the number of Atlantic Ocean hurricanes will decline by 18 percent by the end of the century, and the number of those making North American landfall will decline by 30 percent. The number of the most powerful storms--those with winds over 110 miles per hour--will decline by 8 percent.

The study further predicts hurricanes and tropical storms will become somewhat wetter, which may be welcome news to southeastern states that endure periodic droughts, particularly during the summer/fall hurricane season.

Emanuel: Atlantic Coast Reprieve

The Knutson study follows one published by prominent global warming alarmist Kerry Emanuel and two other scientists.

The Emanuel study, published in the March 2008 issue of the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, concluded, "A new technique for deriving hurricane climatologies from global data, applied to climate models, indicates that global warming should reduce the global frequency of hurricanes, though their intensity may increase in some locations."

The study comes as a tremendous concession from Emanuel, who has long stoked media fears of global warming causing more hurricanes.

Emanuel ran several computer models designed to recreate past hurricane activity. He then used that past hurricane behavior, along with global warming computer models developed by the United Nations' Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, to predict future hurricane activity.

According to the study, "The model consensus has slightly decreased frequency of events in the Caribbean and in the western portion of the Atlantic main development region."

Regarding the intensity of future storms, Emanuel reports the models are split. Some indicate hurricane and tropical storm intensity will remain stable or decline, whereas others predict the storms' overall intensity will increase somewhat. Emanuel sided with the models suggesting more intensity, but he acknowledged large uncertainties remain.

Reaching a Consensus

The Emanuel study directly contradicts sensationalist media assertions of global warming being responsible for recent hurricane activity. Assuming the computer models are correct, Emanuel reported, "the greater part of the large increase in power dissipation over the past 27 [years] cannot be ascribed to global warming."

That finding comports with longstanding reports from scientists at the National Hurricane Center and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

For example, National Hurricane Center scientist Chris Landsea said the evidence of global warming having any effect on hurricanes is "pretty darn tiny."

Similarly, William Gray of Colorado State University, who is widely regarded as one of the foremost hurricane experts in the world, pointed out at the March 2008 International Conference on Climate Change that real-world evidence never supported the assertion global warming was causing an increase in hurricane activity.

When computer models based on speculative assumptions predict one thing but real-world evidence shows exactly the opposite, science tells us we should trust the real-world evidence, Gray noted.
Skeptics have long said this. Since it is suspected that global warming tends to warm higher latitudes more than lower latitudes that makes the difference in temperatures less and it is the difference (among other things, but that is one of the most important) that drives hurricanes, global warming should help to lessen and weaken hurricanes.

The irony is that we may be in for about a few decades of global cooling which will be a factor in increasing and strengthening storms.

07-21-08, 11:09 PM
Steve McIntyre has a preliminary post on the Swindle decision:


[Post #46] Steve McIntyre says:
July 21st, 2008 at 8:21 pm

I’m going to do a post on this. I’ve read the Ofcom decision closely. I disagree that the decision was “a bit of a wash out”. It was about as total a win as Swindle could remotely have hoped for. Bob Ward and the gaggle of 37 professors (Myles Allen, John Houghton, Phil Jones) got absolutely stuffed on 99% of the complaint.

Every single one of their complaints about the science was rejected. Not that Ofcom said that they were wrong about the science; only that they had come into the wrong room if they were looking for comfort. Ofcom’s powers were limited to deciding on whether sections 2 or 5 of the Act had been breached and, in respect to the science, they concluded that they hadn’t.

Swindle only lost on a couple of pretty small points - their handling of the last segment on Africa and a couple of restricted finings on unfairness to individuals, essentially boiling down to a finding that they had not given adequate change to IPCC or David King to respond or give enough explanation to Carl Wunsch. But when you read the decisions, they make the individual complainants look incompetent. Someone at Ofcom has a real sense of humor.

I started writing up a long post, but the grandkids came over. I’ll post tomorrow.
From the looks of it Steve is right that the complainants lost on 99%. But leave it to the press to stress that 1% in the stories and especially the headlines.

And as I maintain (above), there was precious little support for the decision against the program on the 1% the program lost. There are more than adequate defenses to each if the three petty points the complainants won on.

07-22-08, 06:48 AM
Steve McIntyre's first of two major blogs on the Swindle decision:


Monday, July 21st, 2008 at 11:08 pm
Ofcom Decision: A Humiliating Defeat for Bob Ward and the Myles Allen 37
By Steve McIntyre

Ofcom, the U.K. television regulator, has rendered a remarkable decision. People interested in what was actually decided will, unfortunately, have to consult the original judgment at Ofcom, rather than the BBC accounts (here, here) of the judgment.

BBC stated:

The Great Global Warming Swindle, a controversial Channel 4 film, broke Ofcom rules, the media regulator says. In a long-awaited judgement, Ofcom says Channel 4 did not fulfil obligations to be impartial and to reflect a range of views on controversial issues. The film also treated interviewees unfairly, but did not mislead audiences “so as to cause harm or offence”. Plaintiffs say the Ofcom judgement is “inconsistent” and “lets Channel 4 off the hook on a technicality.”

Ofcom rendered 4 decisions in relation to the program itself (page 6) and about alleged unfairness to David King (page 36), IPCC (page 43) and Carl Wunsch (page 70) separately. Today I’ll post on the program decision and will discuss the 3 ancillary decisions tomorrow.

As I’ve previously mentioned on hte blog, I had no involvement in the making or editing of the production. I chatted briefly with a production assistant in Sweden at the KTH conference in Sept 2006 on a pleasant fall day and agreed to an interview when they visited North America, but the interview was cancelled and I had no further contact with them prior to the show being aired. It turned out that I was mentioned in the credits, but nonetheless, as stated above, I had no involvement in anything to do with the preparation of the program.

When controversy arose about one of their temperature graphics in early 2007, I examined the graphic (reported on at CA here on March 17), identifying the exact error (as opposed to more fanciful explanations). I contacted the producers of the show urging them to fix the error, which they undertook to do. Last fall, they contacted me for assistance in responding to the various complaints, which I provided.

The Program

Ofcom stated that it had received 265 complaints about the Program, the bulk of them alleging misrepresentations (in breach of section 2.2) or a failure of due impartiality (section 5).


Among the complainants claiming misrepresentations were Bob Ward and the 37 professors (Myles Allen, Phil Jones et al) who alleged a wide variety of error here and David Rado of the 175-page complaint profiled by BBC here. Ofcom did not uphold any of the misrepresentation complaints against Swindle. Not one.

Ofcom summarized their judgement as follows:

In summary, in relation to the manner in which facts in the programme were presented, Ofcom is of the view that the audience of this programme was not materially misled in a manner that would have led to actual or potential harm. The audience would have been in no doubt that the programme’s focus was on scientific and other arguments which challenged the orthodox theory of man-made global warming. Regardless of whether viewers were in fact persuaded by the arguments contained in the programme, Ofcom does not believe that they could have been materially misled as to the existence and substance of these alternative theories and opinions, or misled as to the weight which is given to these opinions in the scientific community.

Ofcom considers that, although the programme may have caused viewers to challenge the consensus view that human activity is the main cause of global warming, there is no evidence that the programme in itself did, or would, cause appreciable potential harm to members of the public …

Channel 4, however, had the right to show this programme provided it remained within the Code and – despite certain reservations – Ofcom has determined that it did not breach Rule 2.2. On balance it did not materially mislead the audience so as to cause harm or offence.

Not in breach of Rule 2.2.

That’s not to say that Ofcom said that Durkin’s point of view had been vindicated, merely that the complainants were seeking comfort in the wrong bed. Even though complainant Rado said that his complaint had been “peer reviewed” by William Connolley, Ofcom resisted the temptation to opine on scientific truth; instead they did the job assigned to them legislation - to determine whether there had been a violation of Rule 2.2, a possibility that none of the complainants seemed to have considered and for which their preparations were abysmal.

In addition to the general finding, Ofcom selected four major alleged misrepresentations (from the dozens of incoherently presented issues in Rado’s 175 page “peer reviewed” complaint) for individual consideration. Here’s a bit of advice from me to the complainants - you’d have been better off to pick your 4 best issues and stick to them, no matter how interesting the other ones seemed; write a blog on the other ones if you want, but the risk of presenting too many issues to a tribunal is that they’ll end up picking 4 issues to consider anyway and, by throwing too many spitballs against the wall, you end up being stuck with the choices that they make. Were I crafting the complaint, I would not have picked the 4 issues that Ofcom focused on as my priority issues. But the complainants failed to prioritize and got stuck with the issues that Ofcom selected.

The first specific issue related to the use of graphics. And indeed, Swindle contained an error in the temperature graphic in the first program, which was said to have been inadvertently introduced in the production of the graphic. Unlike (say) Inconvenient Truth, where errors have remained uncorrected even when one of their Scientific Advisers supposedly brought the error to the attention of the Inconvenient Truth producers, in this case, the producers promptly replaced the graphic, with changes being made even before the second showing. In the hearing, the GGWS producers candidly acknowledged the error and reported the correction. This undoubtedly helped them with the complaint; Ofcom noted the error but found that this error was “not of such significance as to have been materially misleading so as to cause harm and offence in breach of Rule 2.2″.

The second specific allegation considered was the alleged “‘distortion’ of the science of climate modelling.” Ofcom drolly noted:

Ofcom noted that, although the complainants disagreed with the points made by the contributors in the programme, they did not suggest that the overall statements about climate models were factually inaccurate.

Ouch. Ofcom went on to say (again finding for the defendant):

Ofcom notes that the creation of such models necessarily involved assumptions. The disagreement among scientists about the nature of those assumptions (as described by the contributors to the programme) is not an issue on which Ofcom can adjudicate. Overall however Ofcom’s view was that the passages complained of were not materially misleading so as to cause harm and offence.

Next they considered the claim “that the theory of anthropogenic global warming is promoted by environmentalists as a means to reverse economic growth”. I would have advised the complainants to have just dropped this sort of piffle as a complaint. Ofcom made short shrift of this complaint:

This sequence of the programme consisted of a brief historical examination of the environmental movement in the late 1980s before it had become mainstream. These were clearly views of a small set of people who took a particular position on the political motives of these campaigners. In line with the right to freedom of expression, Ofcom considers that the broadcaster has the right to transmit such views and the audience would understand the context in which such comments were made. The content was therefore not misleading.

The last specific complaint considered were allegations that the program inflated the credibility of its contributors and that they had failed to disclose nefarious links between the contributors and the fossil fuel industry, links which were denied. Ofcom refused to get involved in judging a beauty contest as to whose experts were the more expert or to grasp the nettle of sorting out the validity of internet tattle on supposed links of Lindzen, Singer etc to the fossil fuel industry. They decided the matter on alternate grounds, finding that the amount of contributor background that was reported was an editorial decision:

The credibility of contributors to the programme The right to freedom of expression and the principle of editorial freedom are crucial to broadcasters. The programme used contributors who offered controversial opinions on the issues raised. The decisions by the programme makers not to include all the qualifications of contributors, and not to include more background on them (some of which is strongly disputed), were editorial decisions which overall did not in Ofcom’s view result in the audience being materially misled. … in Ofcom’s view these alleged and strongly disputed links did not need to be disclosed to viewers to avoid the programme being misleading

Alleged Omissions

The Complainants also alleged that Ofcom had misled viewers by “omission of views and facts in a way that materially misled so as to be harmful or offensive”. Here Ofcom observed that the program hardly concealed the existence of a mainstream view - indeed, the program referred repeatedly to the mainstream view, which it criticized, but the audience was clearly apprised that another view was the mainstream view. Ofcom also noted that the mainstream view was well-publicized elsewhere. OFcom:

Ofcom considers there is a difference between presenting an opinion which attacks an established, mainstream and well understood view, such as in this programme, and criticising a view which is much more widely disputed and contentious. In the former case, programme makers are not always required to ensure the detailed reflection of the mainstream view (since it will already be known and generally accepted by the majority of viewers). In the context of this particular programme, given the number of scientific theories and politico-economic arguments dealt with in The Great Global Warming Swindle, it was not materially misleading overall to have omitted certain opposing views or represented them only in commentary. The use by the programme makers of commentary, interviews and archive footage in an attempt to demonstrate the mainstream view on balance, in Ofcom’s opinion, fulfilled this requirement.

In summary, Ofcom considered most viewers would have been aware that the views expressed in the programme went against the scientific consensus about the causes of global warming and were only espoused by a small minority – not least because of the overwhelming amount of material broadcast in recent years based on the consensus view that human production of carbon dioxide is a major cause of global warming.

Due Impartiality

None of the complaints alleging lack of due impartiality in the science portion (sections 1-4) was upheld. Not one. The only bone thrown to the complainants was a finding that there had not been due impartiality in the portion talking about Africa - an issue that Bob Ward and the Myles Allen 37 didn’t even mention.

Ofcom’s reasoning here had a fine touch of irony, which will appeal to connoisseurs of irony, as I hope most CA readers are.

In order for section 5 due impartiality requirements to come into play, the issue had to be one “of political or industrial controversy”. The Code explains that these are “political or industrial issues on which politicians, industry and/or the media are in debate.”

But if the science was “settled”, as the complainants elsewhere argued, then the matter necessarily ceased to be one of “political or industrial controversy”, leaving section 5 inapplicable. As confirmation, Channel 4 introduced statements from the Stern Commission and the former Environment Minister that the science was “settled” and thus the science matters discussed in sections 1-4 were no longer matters of “political or industrial controversy.”

Rather a bold gambit and one that left the Complainants on the horns of a dilemma. In order to sustain their section 5 complaint, they would have had to reverse the position argued elsewhere in the complaint and argue that the science was not “settled”, hardly something that they wanted to do and a position that they did not adopt.

In their decision, Ofcom noted the views of the Stern Commission and the former Environment Minister that the science was no longer a matter of “political or industrial controversy” and threw out the section 5 complaints in relation to the science sections. Didn’t I tell you that the irony would appeal to CA readers?

The only bone that Ofcom threw the program complainants was a mercy bone in relation to the Africa segment, which was hardly a matter of big controversy, having attracted no ire from Bob Ward and the 37 professors. Ofcom concluded that the Africa segment did involve a matter of policy and that the GGWS producers had an obligation to have been more impartial on this topic.

Summary on the Program Complaint

In relation to the program complaint, it’s hard to imagine a more thorough stuffing of the complainants. They were lucky they didn’t have to pay costs.

Tomorrow I’ll comment on the 3 decisions involving individual complaints by David King, the IPCC and Carl Wunsch, each involving fairly particular matters. In each case, Ofcom rejected important items of complaint, with about the only bone thrown the complainants’ way being findings that GGWS did not give the complainants’ enough notice. I was hoping to get to this tonight, because the David King complaint in particular is really the stuff of comedy, which Ofcom handled with a suitably droll delivery worthy of Stephen Colbert.

A complete stuffing of the 37 professors.
Imagine An Inconvenient Truth (AIT) being subjected to any such scrutiny. Wait, it has, at least somewhat, by a British judge last year. It was found to be riddled with errors. Oh, and Lord Monckton and Marlo Lewis have found dozens more. Yet AIT has never admitted to a single error or made any corrections to the film.

Red Dog
07-22-08, 11:04 AM
What's Gore's electricity plan will cost us....


Gore's nutty idea
By Vincent Carroll, Rocky Mountain News (Contact)
Tuesday, July 22, 2008

He's a former vice president of the United States, Nobel Prize winner and best-selling author, so the lavish news coverage of Al Gore's latest brainstorm was inevitable. Less understandable is why an idea so irresponsible - in economic terms, in fact, just this side of deranged - attracted so little ridicule.

Gore proposed last week that the United States "commit to producing 100 percent of our electricity from renewable energy and truly clean carbon-free sources within 10 years."

Not just all new electricity, mind you, which would be challenging enough. But all existing electricity, too.

This would of course require utilities to mothball hundreds of existing power plants as they launched a crash construction program of solar plants, wind farms and transmission lines costing hundreds of billions and perhaps trillions of dollars. (To put this in perspective, T. Boone Pickens, another fellow who's caught the wind-power bug, claims on his Web site, "Building wind facilities in the corridor that stretches from the Texas panhandle to North Dakota could produce 20 percent of the electricity for the United States at a cost of $1 trillion. It would take another $200 billion to build the capacity to transmit that energy to cities and towns.")

Gore would subject 300 million people to an experiment in which baseload power that is needed 24 hours a day to keep the economy - and our livelihoods - humming is replaced willy nilly by power sources still susceptible to natural disruption (such as lack of wind or lingering cloud cover), that cost more (at least in the case of solar) and are far less plentiful in some regions than others (Colorado is lucky at least in that regard).

He'd inflict monumental utility price hikes on consumers who'd pay for both the shutdown of old plants and construction of the new - with who knows what economic fallout.

With such a short timetable, we'd have to shred this nation's federal system of utility regulation in favor of national directives, presumably from Congress or a muscle-flexing Environmental Protection Agency charged with regulating greenhouse gases. Not since World War II have we seen anything remotely comparable in terms of central planning.

Stanley Lewandowski, the general manager of the Intermountain Rural Electric Association, is one of the few utility officials willing to suggest that the prophet of global warming is strutting about like an emperor without his clothes. "Al Gore's statement of obtaining 100 percent of our power from renewables in 10 years has as much a chance of happening as the sun shining 24 hours a day," Lewandowski quipped. "It's nonsense."

Yet revealing. The idea reflects a shocking indifference to the possible fragility of an economy subjected to a force-fed "transformative" (Gore's word) experience. History rarely is kind to such ambitions, with the most catastrophic example occurring 50 years in China. That's when Mao Zedong launched his Great Leap Forward - the hare-brained effort to transform that nation into an industrial power within a few years by, among other things, dotting the landscape with backyard furnaces to make steel.

Why would we assume that our economy is immune to the shock of a grand scheme to remake its industrial energy base in a few short years? Politically, of course, our society is far more immune to radical ideas than China's was under its great tyrant. Gore's dream to the contrary, most of our fossil fuel plants aren't going to disappear any time soon.

"Many Americans have begun to wonder whether or not we've simply lost our appetite for bold policy solutions," Gore worried during last week's speech.

For bold solutions? No. But for nutty ones: Let's dearly hope so.

07-22-08, 11:21 AM
Oh no! Global warming will overrun us with....



Global Warming Could be Causing a Kitten Boom, Experts Say
Tuesday, July 22, 2008 :: infoZine Staff
PetsBy Alyse Knorr - Global warming and kittens. While it may seem hard to see the connection between the two - a climate phenomenon that melts glaciers and acidifies oceans, and cuddly, 4-ounce balls of fur - experts say there could be one.

Washington, D.C. - Scripps Howard Foundation Wire - infoZine - Each spring, the onset of warm weather and longer days drives female cats into heat, resulting in a few months of booming kitten populations known as "kitten season."

"The brain receives instructions to produce a hormone that basically initiates the heat cycle in a cat," said Nancy Peterson, feral cat program manager of the Humane Society of the United States, "and those instructions are affected by the length of day and usually the rising temperatures of spring."

Peterson said kitten season generally starts in March or April, as the days get warmer and longer, and the flood of kittens continues throughout the spring and early summer.

What shelter officials and veterinarians have begun noticing, however, is that kitten season is starting to begin earlier and last longer.

"They're mating earlier and we're starting to see them coming into the shelters much earlier in the season," Washington Humane Society Shelter Director Michelle Otis said.

In February 2007, for instance, the Philadelphia Animal Welfare Society recorded a total cat intake of 672. The intake in February climbed to 1,008.

"Right now we're getting absolutely flooded with kittens," said Rory Uhler, president of the Safe Haven Animal Sanctuary in Cincinnati, noting that kitten season usually tapers off in the third or fourth week of June.

Newspaper ads and signs on street corners advertising "free kittens" are popping up all around Cincinnati, where kitten season started a month early this year, Uhler said.

"I don't know any shelter that has any room in Cincinnati," he added.

Where does global warming fit in? Some experts say rising temperatures could be lengthening kitten season by altering cat reproductive cycles.

"It might make sense that if temperatures are rising, cats will go into heat more often," Peterson said.

On its Web site, the Environmental Protection Agency states that rising temperatures may cause some small mammals to start breeding earlier in the year.

"Domestic cats evolved from African ancestors," said Julie Levy, a veterinarian and shelter medicine professor at the University of Florida. "Although they have adapted to climates throughout the world, it is possible that global warming is mimicking their ancient origins and helping them reach their full reproductive potential."

Other experts disagree, holding that the heat cycle in cats is based on day length and light exposure, not temperature.

"A cat's cycle is based on day length, and day length isn't changing," said Christine Petersen, assistant professor at Iowa State University's College of Veterinary Medicine. "Temperature's going up a little, but the sexual cycle of the cat isn't based on temperature."

Even if rising temperatures are not directly influencing cats' heat cycles, they can play a role in other ways. Some experts believe, for instance, that milder weather increases kitten survival rates.

And Levy offered another theory - that warming could hasten the onset of puberty in cats, as it does in some other species, creating a larger pool of fertile cats each breeding season.

Yet another explanation could be a "food chain effect," in which warm weather may help more rats and mice survive, providing feral and stray cats with more prey and allowing their numbers to thrive, said Gail Buchwald, vice president of the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Adoption Center in New York.

Whatever the cause, the cat population crisis is hitting animal shelters hard, and in many cases, may result in higher euthanasia rates.

The Humane Society of the United States estimates that half of the 6 million to 8 million dogs and cats that enter U.S. shelters every year are euthanized.

"There just is not enough space, and there just aren't enough homes for all the cats and kittens being born right now," Otis said.

Theoretically, one cat that mates three times a year - cat pregnancies last 63 days and produce four to six kittens - and her offspring could produce 420,000 kittens over seven years, according to the Humane Society of the U.S.

Experts agree that the most critical factor in decreasing the cat population is sterilization through spaying or neutering.

Many veterinary clinics and animal shelters offer discount spay and neuter rates for pet owners, and many also operate programs that trap, neuter and release feral cats.

"We were part of the problem," Buchwald said. "We need to be part of the solution."
Actually, reports of the horror of the kitty population bomb aren't new:


But then, enviros do love their recyclables.

And one question might be:

Why are we hearing about this now when the last decade has been slightly cooling?

07-22-08, 11:51 AM
McIntyre on Sir David King and the Swindle:


Tuesday, July 22nd, 2008 at 10:09 am
David King: Hot Girls and Cold Continents
By Steve McIntyre

Ofcom interrupted their busy schedule ( In re: Sportxxxgirls was the next case on the docket) to consider a complaint by Sir David King, former U.K. Chief Scientist that the programme had broadcast a statement which exaggerated claims he had made in the past regarding the Antarctic, and attributed to him a statement about “breeding couples” which he had never made.

David King’s complaint (as well as similar complaints by IPCC and Carl Wunsch) were considered under Practice 7.11 which states:

“If a programme alleges wrongdoing or incompetence or makes other significant allegations, those concerned should normally be given an appropriate and timely opportunity to respond.”

We are not taking here about misrepresentations (section 2.2) or due impartiality (section 5), but the right of criticized parties to be offered an “appropriate and timely opportunity to respond”.

King’s complaint pertained to a statement by Fred Singer at the end of Swindle:

“There will still be people who believe that this is the end of the world – particularly when you have, for example, the chief scientist of the UK telling people that by the end of the century the only habitable place on the earth will be the Antarctic. And humanity may survive thanks to some breeding couples who moved to the Antarctic. I mean this is hilarious. It would be hilarious actually if it weren’t so sad”

Ofcom carefully considered whether Singer’s statement amounted to an allegation of “incompetence” or something similar, giving rise to a requirement to provide King with a timely opportunity to respond. Here they considered the allegation in two parts: (1) the “only habitable” place comment (King admitted that he had said that it would be the “most habitable place on earth”) and (2) the “breeding couples” comment (perhaps Ofcom was thinking ahead to the Sportxxxgirls case.)

The “Only Habitable Place”

Ofcom stated that King’s complaint referred only to his original testimony to the House of Commons Select Committee on April 24, 2004 in which he had stated:

“Fifty-five million years ago was a time when there was no ice on the earth; the Antarctic was the most habitable place for mammals, because it was the coolest place, and the rest of the earth was rather inhabitable because it was so hot. It is estimated that it [the carbon dioxide level] was roughly 1,000 parts per million then, and the important thing is that if we carry on business as usual we will hit 1,000 parts per million around the end of the century.”

He complained that the programme had exaggerated his speech by replacing “most habitable” with “the only habitable”.

Channel 4 observed that on April 27, 2004, Sir David gave a speech to Tony Blair’s Climate Group launch, in which he was reported in U.K. newspapers as using the phrase “only uninhabitable continent”. The following quotes were introduced by Channel 4 and noted in the Ofcom decision:

“Antarctica is likely to be the world’s only habitable continent by the end of this century if global warming remains unchecked, the government’s chief scientist, Professor Sir David King said last week. He said the Earth was entering the ‘first hot period’ for 60 million years when there was no ice on the plane and “the rest of the globe could not sustain human life”.
(The Independent on Sunday, 2 May 2004)

Sir David replied that he had used the following phrase no both speeches:

“55 million years ago the Antarctic was the most habitable place for mammals.”

Channel 4 observed that “there was no evidence to suggest that Sir David had been quoted inaccurately as in the three years since the first report in 2004 there was no attempt to correct or challenged them.”

In response, Sir David:

Sir David maintained the programme had clearly presented a distortion of his views. Sir David said that he did not say or imply that the Antarctic was ever the ONLY habitable place for mammals, still less was he making a prediction that it would be the only or even the most, habitable place for mammals if CO2 concentrations reached similar concentrations in the future.

Didn’t I warn you that it would seem like a Monty Python episode (and we’re only halfway so far.)

The issue even recurred on Australian TV in fall 2007 (after the airing of Swindle), where Sir David was asked on Australian TV:

I think you said this in 2004, at least it suggested you did, that there might be a stage when the only inhabitable place on Earth will be Antarctica - do you remember saying that?

and said that he had been “misquoted many, many times” and said that he had merely recommended investments in Antarctic real estate:

I certainly didn’t say that, I’ve been totally misquoted many, many times; always pleased to have the opportunity to correct the statement I made. What I did say was that if you go back 55 million years, it’s in the palæological record that Antarctica was a tropical forest and at that point in time, if you wanted to have some real estate, and these were my words, you would want it in Antarctica because the rest of the world was pretty damned hot. So that has been extrapolated to me saying that if we keep going in this way there will only be people left living in Antarctica.

“Fifty-five million years ago was a time when there was no ice on the earth; the Antarctic was the most habitable place for mammals, because it was the coolest place, and the rest of the earth was rather inhabitable because it was so hot. It is estimated that it [the carbon dioxide level] was roughly 1,000 parts per million then, and the important thing is that if we carry on business as usual we will hit 1,000 parts per million around the end of the century.”

Back to Ofcom. The Committee duly noted the two sides of the story as follows:

The Committee noted that Professor Singer had attributed to Sir David the words “only habitable”, which Sir David said was incorrect as his original statements had used the words “most habitable”. The Committee also noted that contemporaneous, unchallenged reports, of Sir David’s comments, had referred to “only habitable”.

In the end, after all this careful consideration, they didn’t actually refer to this matter in their decision, only referring to the “breeding couples” issue, to which we now turn.

“Breeding Couples”

Sir David’s complaint stated that his original statement made no reference to the survival of humanity depending on “breeding couples who moved to the Antarctic”.

Channel 4 replied that Singer, in fact, was referring to reported quotes of two different scientists: King and Sir James Lovelock, another prominent scientist who had stated:

“Before this century is over, billions of us will die, and the few breeding pairs of people that survive will be in the Arctic where the climate remains tolerable.” (The Independent, 16 January 2006)

Channel 4 argued that Singer did not specifically attribute the “breeding couples” quote to King, and, in any event, the quote would hardly result in unfairness to King given that

the complainant was on record as stating that Antarctica could be the “only habitable place on earth” and “the rest of the globe could not sustain human life”, it was therefore not unfair for the programme to suggest that Sir David was also of the view that humanity may only survive due to breeding couples in the Antarctic. Channel 4 said Sir James Lovelock’s statement was a natural conclusion to be drawn from Sir David’s reported statement, and in essence the two statements said the same thing.

Even if Singer had conflated the views of King and Lovelock, they observed that “neither Channel 4 nor the programme makers were aware at the time of broadcast that Professor Singer had conflated two quotes from these eminent scientists.”

Ofcom carefully assessed the to-and-fro concluding as follows:

The Committee noted that, in recounting Sir David’s views on the dangers of global warming, Professor Singer had incorrectly attributed to Sir David a comment by the scientist Professor Lovelock regarding “breeding couples”. In relation to this Channel 4 had stated that “neither Channel 4 nor the programme makers were aware at the time of broadcast that Professor Singer had conflated [these] two quotes”.

In the Committee’s view, Professor Singer’s comment amounted to a significant allegation which called into question Sir David’s scientific views and his credibility as a scientist. In accordance with Practice 7.11 therefore, Sir David should have been offered an appropriate and timely opportunity to respond. The programme makers did not provide such an opportunity to the complainant. In the circumstances the Committee found that the failure to give Sir David King an appropriate and timely opportunity to respond to the comment made by Professor Singer resulted in unfairness to the complainant in the programme as broadcast.

David King on Breeding Couples

Since the alleged unfairness relates to the representation of David King’s view on breeding couples, I think that we should consider views on this topic that he has previously expressed.

Last year, King opined that, in order to cure global warming, hot young girls:

“who find supercar drivers “sexy”, … should divert their affections to men who live more environmentally-friendly lives.

The right panel shows Jenni Dahlman, a former Miss Scandinavia, with Finnish race car driver, Kimi Raikonnen. This would presumably represent that the type of liaison that must be sacrificed if we are to cure global warming.

Instead of dashing young race car drivers, let’s try to get envisage a world in which the hot car babes were attracted to men who lived “more environmentally friendly lives” - a world that would look more like the one shown below:

Clearly the appropriate mea culpa would be for Channel 4 to dryly apologize for holding the Chief Scientist up to ridicule by incorrectly attributing to him Lovelock’s view that humanity would survive through Antarctic breeding couples, when they should properly said that his views on breeding were that hot girls who find “supercar drivers “sexy”, … should divert their affections to men who live more environmentally-friendly lives.”
King tried to make a mountain out of a molehill. They gave him a pile of compost in the backyard which was more than he should have gotten. Looks like Ofcom was throwing King a bone.

(Pics of hot women at link.)

07-22-08, 02:24 PM
A complete list of things caused by global warming (http://www.numberwatch.co.uk/warmlist.htm)

Forgive me if this has been posted before. A friend recently e-mailed me the link and I found it laughably depressing (in that people buy this ridiculousness). Apparently, it hasn't been updated to include Black Hawk Down.That's also the same list that causes global cooling.

07-22-08, 03:18 PM
That's also the same list that causes global cooling.
Of course, since global cooling is on the Complete List of Things Caused by Global Warming. <img src="http://www.cheesebuerger.de/images/midi/frech/a068.gif" alt="Hysterical 3" />

07-22-08, 04:47 PM
Blockbuster testimony before the Senate EPW Committee (Barbara Boxer, chair, James Inhofe, ranking member) by Roy Spencer today:


Jul 22, 2008
Testimony of Roy W. Spencer in Front of EPW on July 22, 2008

Dr. Roy Spencer, University of Alabama, Huntsville

I would like to thank Senator Boxer and members of the Committee for allowing me to discuss my experiences as a NASA employee engaged in global warming research, as well as to provide my current views on the state of the science of global warming and climate change. I have a PhD in Meteorology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and have been involved in global warming research for close to twenty years. I have numerous peer reviewed scientific articles dealing with the measurement and interpretation of climate variability and climate change. I am also the U.S. Science Team Leader for the AMSR-E instrument flying on NASA’s Aqua satellite.

On the subject of the Administration’s involvement in policy-relevant scientific work performed by government employees in the EPA, NASA, and other agencies, I can provide some perspective based upon my previous experiences as a NASA employee. For example, during the Clinton-Gore Administration I was told what I could and could not say during congressional testimony. Since it was well known that I am skeptical of the view that mankind’s greenhouse gas emissions are mostly responsible for global warming, I assumed that this advice was to help protect Vice President Gore’s agenda on the subject.

This did not particularly bother me, though, since I knew that as an employee of an Executive Branch agency my ultimate boss resided in the White House. To the extent that my work had policy relevance, it seemed entirely appropriate to me that the privilege of working for NASA included a responsibility to abide by direction given by my superiors. But I eventually tired of the restrictions I had to abide by as a government employee, and in the fall of 2001 I resigned from NASA and accepted my current position as a Principal Research Scientist at the University of Alabama in Huntsville.

Regarding the currently popular theory that mankind is responsible for global warming, I am very pleased to deliver good news from the front lines of climate change research. Our latest research results, which I am about to describe, could have an enormous impact on policy decisions regarding greenhouse gas emissions. Despite decades of persistent uncertainty over how sensitive the climate system is to increasing concentrations of carbon dioxide from the burning of fossil fuels, we now have new satellite evidence which strongly suggests that the climate system is much less sensitive than is claimed by the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Another way of saying this is that the real climate system appears to be dominated by “negative feedbacks’—instead of the “positive feedbacks” which are displayed by all twenty computerized climate models utilized by the IPCC.

If true, an insensitive climate system would mean that we have little to worry about in the way of manmade global warming and associated climate change. And, as we will see, it would also mean that the warming we have experienced in the last 100 years is mostly natural. Of course, if climate change is mostly natural then it is largely out of our control, and is likely to end—if it has not ended already, since satellite-measured global temperatures have not warmed for at least seven years now.

2.1 Theoretical evidence that climate sensitivity has been overestimated

The support for my claim of low climate sensitivity (net negative feedback) for our climate system is two-fold. First, we have a new research article1 in-press in the Journal of Climate which uses a simple climate model to show that previous estimates of the sensitivity of the climate system from satellite data were biased toward the high side by the neglect of natural cloud variability. It turns out that the failure to account for natural, chaotic cloud variability generated internal to the climate system will always lead to the illusion of a climate system which appears more sensitive than it really is.

Significantly, prior to its acceptance for publication, this paper was reviewed by two leading IPCC climate model experts - Piers Forster and Isaac Held-- both of whom agreed that we have raised a legitimate issue. Piers Forster, an IPCC report lead author and a leading expert on the estimation of climate sensitivity, even admitted in his review of our paper that other climate modelers need to be made aware of this important issue.

To be fair, in a follow-up communication Piers Forster stated to me his belief that the net effect of the new understanding on climate sensitivity estimates would likely be small. But as we shall see, the latest evidence now suggests otherwise.

2.2 Observational evidence that climate sensitivity has been overestimated

The second line of evidence in support of an insensitive climate system comes from the satellite data themselves. While our work in-press established the existence of an observational bias in estimates of climate sensitivity, it did not address just how large that bias might be.

But in the last several weeks, we have stumbled upon clear and convincing observational evidence of particularly strong negative feedback (low climate sensitivity) from our latest and best satellite instruments. That evidence includes our development of two new methods for extracting the feedback signal from either observational or climate model data, a goal which has been called the “holy grail”2 of climate research.

The first method separates the true signature of feedback, wherein radiative flux variations are highly correlated to the temperature changes which cause them, from internally-generated radiative forcings, which are uncorrelated to the temperature variations which result from them. It is the latter signal which has been ignored in all previous studies, the neglect of which biases feedback diagnoses in the direction of positive feedback (high climate sensitivity).

Based upon global oceanic climate variations measured by a variety of NASA and NOAA satellites during the period 2000 through 2005 we have found a signature of climate sensitivity so low that it would reduce future global warming projections to below 1 deg. C by the year 2100. As can be seen in Fig. 1, that estimate from satellite data is much less sensitive (a larger diagnosed feedback) than even the least sensitive of the 20 climate models which the IPCC summarizes in its report. It is also consistent with our previously published analysis of feedbacks associated with tropical intraseasonal oscillations3.

A second method for extracting the true feedback signal takes advantage of the fact that during natural climate variability, there are varying levels of internally-generated radiative forcings (which are uncorrelated to temperature), versus non-radiative forcings (which are highly correlated to temperature). If the feedbacks estimated for different periods of time involve different levels of correlation, then the “true” feedback can be estimated by extrapolating those results to 100% correlation. This can be seen in Fig. 2, which shows that even previously published4 estimates of positive feedback are, in reality, supportive of negative feedback (feedback parameters greater than 3.3 Wm-2K-1).

2.3 Why do climate models produce so much global warming?

The results just presented beg the following question: If the satellite data indicate an insensitive climate system, why do the climate models suggest just the opposite? I believe the answer is due to a misinterpretation of cloud behavior by climate modelers.

The cloud behaviors programmed into climate models (cloud “parameterizations”) are based upon researchers’ interpretation of cause and effect in the real climate system5. When cloud variations in the real climate system have been measured, it has been assumed that the cloud changes were the result of certain processes, which are ultimately tied to surface temperature changes. But since other, chaotic, internally generated mechanisms can also be the cause of cloud changes, the neglect of those processes leads to cloud parameterizations which are inherently biased toward high climate sensitivity. The reason why the bias occurs only in the direction of high climate sensitivity is this: While surface warming could conceivably cause cloud changes which lead to either positive or negative cloud feedback, causation in the opposite direction (cloud changes causing surface warming) can only work in one direction, which then “looks like” positive feedback. For example, decreasing low cloud cover can only produce warming, not cooling, and when that process is observed in the real climate system and assumed to be a feedback, it will always suggest a positive feedback.

2.4 So, what has caused global warming over the last century?

One necessary result of low climate sensitivity is that the radiative forcing from greenhouse gas emissions in the last century is not nearly enough to explain the upward trend of 0.7 deg. C in the last 100 years. This raises the question of whether there are natural processes at work which have caused most of that warming.

On this issue, it can be shown with a simple climate model that small cloud fluctuations assumed to occur with two modes of natural climate variability -- the El Nino/La Nina phenomenon (Southern Oscillation), and the Pacific Decadal Oscillation -- can explain 70% of the warming trend since 1900, as well as the nature of that trend: warming until the 1940s, no warming until the 1970s, and resumed warming since then. These results are shown in Fig. 3.

While this is not necessarily being presented as the only explanation for most of the warming in the last century, it does illustrate that there are potential explanations for recent warming other that just manmade greenhouse gas emissions. Significantly, this is an issue on which the IPCC has remained almost entirely silent. There has been virtually no published work on the possible role of internal climate variations in the warming of the last century.

3. Policy Implications

Obviously, what I am claiming today is of great importance to the global warming debate and related policy decisions, and it will surely be controversial. These results are not totally unprecedented, though, as other recently published research6 has also led to the conclusion that the real climate system does not exhibit net positive feedback.

While it will take some time for the research community to digest this new information, it must be mentioned that new research contradicting the latest IPCC report is entirely consistent with the normal course of scientific progress. I predict that in the coming years, there will be a growing realization among the global warming research community that most of the climate change we have observed is natural, and that mankind’s role is relatively minor.

While other researchers need to further explore and validate my claims, I am heartened by the fact that my recent presentation of these results to an audience of approximately 40 weather and climate researchers at the University of Colorado in Boulder last week (on July 17, 2008) led to no substantial objections to either the data I presented, nor to my interpretation of those data.

And, curiously, despite its importance to climate modeling activities, no one from Dr. Kevin Trenberth’s facility, the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), bothered to drive four miles down the road to attend my seminar, even though it was advertised at NCAR.

I hope that the Committee realizes that, if true, these new results mean that humanity will be largely spared the negative consequences of human-induced climate change. This would be good news that should be celebrated -- not attacked and maligned.

And given that virtually no research into possible natural explanations for global warming has been performed, it is time for scientific objectivity and integrity to be restored to the field of global warming research. This Committee could, at a minimum, make a statement that encourages that goal.
(Graphs and footnotes at link)

This is, if it holds up, overwhelmingly huge. The alarmists know that CO2, in and of itself, does not have a large enough climate sensitivity (the increase in temperature forced by a doubling of CO2) to be much to worry about. The alarmists have always claimed positive feedbacks from increased CO2 will increase the climate sensitivity to dangerous levels. If Spencer is right and the opposite is true, there are negative feedbacks, CO2 becomes even less of a problem, in fact probably insignificant.

Remember a month and a day ago when James Hansen testified before a Congressional committee? All he did was repeat his ridiculous scare stories and say executives of energy companies should be prosecuted. He got tons of publicity. I expect virtually none for Dr. Spencer's testimony although it is infinitely more significant and newsworthy. In fact I can find not a single story on Google News at this time.

07-22-08, 05:01 PM
Senator Inhofe's opening statement at today's hearing:


Opening Statement of Senator James Inhofe
Senate Environment and Public Works Full Committee
An Update on the Science of Global Warming and its Implications
Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Madame Chairman, I am very disappointed to see that this Committee is once again beginning its deliberations on global warming in the wrong manner. Rather than focusing on substantive issues that would be helpful to the debate on global warming legislation, this Committee is choosing to engage in more political theater with a predetermined outcome. The rushed process and the complete lack of understanding of the policy implications of the Lieberman Warner doomed it from the start. Opposition to the bill was not limited to Republicans, as nearly 30% of Senate Democrats refused to support the bill.

If this Committee were serious in undertaking efforts to draft global warming policy rather than score political points, it should be focusing its efforts in a much more methodical and deliberative manner that acknowledges the complexity of the issues surrounding any mandatory emission reduction policy. Regardless of my own position on this topic, the Committee should be exploring issues to help build a record on how to draft a cap and trade system, the level of technology currently available to achieve reductions, how to allocate credits, how to design an auction system, how to create a domestic offset program, what the international impacts will be on trade and particularly exports, how to effectively contain costs through a transparent mechanism, and the list could go on.

Instead we are here to politicize the internal deliberative process of the Administration under the guise of an update on the science of global warming hearing. While I welcome the opportunity to discuss the latest science on global warming, doing it in this heavily political setting with a predetermined outcome focused on internal deliberations of the Executive is not the right venue for such discussion. It is my view that regardless of Administration, the President acting through the entire executive branch is fully entitled to express his policy judgments to the EPA Administrator, and to expect his subordinate to carry out the judgment of what the law requires and permits. It can be argued that the “unitary Executive concept” promotes more effective rulemaking by bringing a broader perspective to bear on important regulatory decisions. It also enhances democratic accountability for regulatory decision-making by pinning responsibility on the President to answer to the public for the regulatory actions taken by his Administration. Therefore, I consider this debate over censorship within the Administration to be a nonissue. All administrations edit testimony and all documents go through interagency review before any final agency action. I cannot support any investigations that could have a chilling effect within the deliberative process of the Administration, and cause future career and political employees from refraining from an open and honest dialogue.

Regarding the real subject of the hearing, it is no secret what my views on the science of man-made global warming are. I welcome Dr. Roy Spencer, who will be updating the Committee on his recent theoretical and observational evidence that climate sensitivity has been overestimated, as well as giving his perspective on White House involvement in the reporting of agency employee’s work.

I am also happy to report that there are several updates that are worth noting for purposes of the record for this hearing. Numerous peer-reviewed studies, analyses and prominent scientists continue to speak out to refute many conclusions of the IPCC. I have documented in the past how the consensus on the “science is settled” debate has been challenged, and in many cases, completely refuted, from the hockey stick, to the Stern Review, to the IPCC backtracking on conclusive physical links between global warming and observed hurricane frequency and intensity.

Just this past week, a major new study was published in the peer-reviewed journal Climate Dynamics that finds worldwide land warming has occurred largely in response' to oceans, and not carbon dioxide. There have also been recent challenges by Russian scientists to the very idea that carbon dioxide is driving Earth’s temperature and a report from India challenging the so-called “consensus.” The Physics and Society Forum, a unit within the American Physical Society, published a new paper refuting the IPCC conclusions where the editor conceded there is a ‘considerable presence' of global warming skeptics within the scientific community.

More and more prominent scientists continue to speak out and dissent from man made global warming. In June, the Nobel Prize Winner for Physics, Ivar Giaever, declared himself a “skeptic” and said “global warming has become a new religion.” Atmospheric Scientist Dr. Joanna Simpson, the first woman in the world to receive a PhD in meteorology also dissented in 2008. “As a scientist I remain skeptical” of climate fears, Dr. Simpson said in February of this year. In June, a top UN IPCC Japanese Scientist, Dr. Kiminori Itoh, turned on the IPCC and called man-made global warming fears the “worst scientific scandal in the history.” In addition, more evidence of challenges to global warming occurred when two top hurricane scientists announced they were reconsidering their views on global warming and hurricanes.

As the normal scientific process continues to evolve and models continue to improve, there have many more instances documented that are positive developments, which should be embraced, rather than ridiculed or immediately attacked by the media or policymakers. It is my hope that as more and more of these researchers speak out, scientific objectivity and integrity can be restored to the field of global warming research.
In the spirit of fairness, here is Senator Boxer's opening statement:


Boxer Opening Statement: EPW Hearing entitled, "Update on the Science of Global Warming and Its Implications"
July 22, 2008

(Remarks as prepared for delivery)

Good morning. Today’s hearing will focus on global warming science and its implications.

The evidence has long been overwhelming that global warming poses a serious threat to the American people and we must act now to prevent devastating consequences.

In dozens of hearings and briefings in this Committee, including presentations from Nobel Prize winning scientists of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), we have heard repeatedly that global warming endangers public health and welfare.

The IPCC found that global warming is unequivocal, and that most of the recent warming is due to human activities.

In North America, the IPCC warned of risks to public health, including increased frequency and duration of heat waves and heat related illness and death, increased water-borne disease from degraded water quality, and increased respiratory disease, including asthma and other lung diseases, from increased smog. Children and the elderly will be especially vulnerable to these impacts.

In the U.S., there will also be reduced snowpack in the western mountains, critically reducing access to water. There will also be prolonged droughts and insect invasions that will kill crops and damage forests, leaving them more susceptible to fire. Coastal communities and habitats will be battered by intensified storms.

And leading scientists every week sound new warnings. Let’s look at a few headlines over the last several weeks:
• Warming West is ground zero for wildfires
San Francisco Chronicle, July 21, 2008
• Wetlands Could Unleash "Carbon Bomb" - Scientists
Reuters, July 21, 2008
• Climate Change May Muddy Better-Than-Bottled New York Tap Water
Bloomberg, July 7, 2008
• Global Warming to Deplete Great Lakes Even More
Reuters, May 28, 2008

We are fortunate to be joined today by an IPCC scientist who will share some of the latest information with us on the dangers posed by global warming. I’d also like to place in the record a statement from Dr. Rajendra Pachauri, Chairman of the IPCC.

Despite the scientific consensus, despite the danger, the Bush Administration has failed to take any meaningful action.

In fact, rather than addressing the problem, recent investigations by the press and congressional committees, including this one, have documented an effort by the White House and the Office of the Vice President to cover up the threat posed by global warming. They have censored documents including CDC testimony before this committee. They have muzzled scientists. And they have ignored unanimous recommendations, from agency experts, to act.

The Bush Administration’s actions threaten the health and welfare of the American people, but benefit a narrow group of special interests.

Nevertheless, we have the tools to begin to act now. The Supreme Court in Massachusetts v. EPA, decided in April of last year, made absolutely clear that our Clean Air Act applies to global warming emissions. Unfortunately, the Bush Administration has defied the Supreme Court’s ruling and pushed off action to the next Administration.

In our hearing today, we will hear more about exactly how this happened.

Not only has the Bush Administration itself failed to act, but they are blocking the actions of states like California, and as many as 19 states that are waiting to follow suit, each of which is trying to make progress in the absence of federal leadership.

I am committed to continuing to press for action at the earliest opportunity. We will not let up. We cannot afford to. We have the opportunity to solve this problem, and I believe we will.

I look forward to hearing from the witnesses today.

07-22-08, 05:36 PM
I knew Climate Resistance could not resist blogging about the Swindle ruling:


Tue, 22 July, 2008
90 Minutes of TV; 16 Months of Handwaving…

…and counting…

Every day in the UK, £millions are spent on making sure that national and local government departments do not produce too much CO2. Business, schools and hospitals have to make sure they are complying with regulations that require them to reduce their environmental impact - rather than doing business, teaching, and making people well. Commuters across the country face increasing fuel taxes and rising costs of public and private transport. Children are taught to fear for the security of their future, and their parents are scolded for the selfish act of reproducing in the face of over-population. House-builders are forced to meet new ‘environmental standards’, and architects design homes not for their intended occupants’ comfort and quality of life, but to make sure that their living standards are not ‘unsustainable’. Across the media, countless programs, news items, articles, and lifestyle guides instruct us on how we can - and must - change the way we live our lives in a constant barrage of environmental propaganda. Politicians battle about what percentage cuts of CO2 emissions by when will save the planet, and whether the carrot or the stick is the best way to induce behavioural change. NGOs and supra-national organisations dictate policy to democratic governments. ‘Environmental psychologists’ theorise as to what it is about ‘human nature’ which prevents us from obeying environmental diktats. Climate change is the defining issue of our time - not because of incontrovertible scientific fact, but because it has become the organising principle of public and private life.

A mere 90 minutes of programming on Channel 4, nearly a year and half ago, challenged this orthodoxy’s influence. And those behind the orthodoxy have been spitting feathers ever since. It has raised more green bile than almost any other commentary, and has become the scapegoat for the environmental movement’s failure to connect with the public. Accordingly, the environmentalists’ fragile claim to legitimacy means that its first response is to spit invective at its detractors, the second is to run to the censor. What it has not tried is to engage in debate. To do so would be to appear to concede that, in fact, the debate is not over, the science is not ‘in’, and there are various approaches that can be taken in response to climate change, regardless of whether or not humans are causing it.

“It’s not fair!” scream the complaints to OFCOM, that just 90 minutes of program have been so influential, amidst, literally, months of airtime given over to proclaiming that we are doomed, that we face imminent destruction, that unless we change our lifestyles, millions, maybe billions of people will die from plague, pestilence, drought and famine. Never mind that these prophecies themselves lack a scientific basis; you can say whatever you like about the future, just so long as you don’t make the claim that it is not dominated by catastrophe. The most lurid imaginations can project into the future to paint the kind of picture that would have Hieronymus Bosch screaming for mercy, without ever risking OFCOM’s censure. You can make stuff up, providing it will contribute to the legitimacy of this new form of authoritarianism.

The OFCOM ruling on Martin Durkin’s polemic, The Great Global Warming Swindle, was published yesterday. Its findings are that there were problems; that comments attributed to David King - the UK’s chief scientific advisor at the time - were not made by him, even though they were; that the IPCC had not been given sufficient time to respond to comments made about it, even though it had been; and that Professor Carl Wunsch had been misled as to the nature of the program, even though he hadn’t (and isn’t that what investigative journalists are supposed to do?). On the matter of misleading the public, Ofcom found that it had not been offended, harmed, nor materially misled. A mixed review, then, saying, in summary, that Channel 4 were right to broadcast the polemic, but should have paid more attention to the rights of the injured parties. You’d have thought that would be the end of it. But now Ofcom itself is facing criticism from the eco-inquisition, and their decision is to be appealed by Bob Ward, former communications director of the UK’s Royal Society, on the basis that inaccuracies in the program were harmful to the public. Here he is on BBC Radio 4’s PM show:

Eddie Mair: What got you so cross?

Bob Ward: Well, what’s made me angry is the suggestion by Channel 4 that they have been found by the OFCOM ruling not to have misled the audience. And that is not what the ruling says. The ruling says that there were clearly inaccuracies in the programme and that these were admitted by Channel 4, many of them, but, in the opinion of OFCOM, these did not cause harm or offence to the public. Now, I’m afraid that there is no real justification in the ruling that OFCOM have tested whether it caused harm and offence, and actually, there’s quite a lot of evidence out there that it has caused harm, because people have changed their views, I think, about whether greenhouse gas emissions are driving climate change.

EM: And you think that’s down to one programme?

BW: Well, it’s certainly contributed to it, and as Hamish Mykura [Channel 4 Commissioning Editor] was saying, he believes that it’s acted as a lightning rod. It certainly, I mean, people I’ve talked to professionally within the insurance industry with whom I work, some of them have been swayed, and that’s quite damaging. So, as a result, I think it’s certainly true that I and many of the other complainants are now going to appeal against the OFCOM decision on the grounds that there is clear evidence of harm.

EM: Do you think perhaps that some of the complaints that went to OFCOM were too detailed and too technical?

BW: Well, OFCOM did say that they are not there to rule on scientific accuracy, so it’s certainly been a challenge, which is why it’s taken them 16 months to rule. But it’s disappointing that they have reached the conclusions that they have - that although they recognise there are inaccuracies, it didn’t cause harm. They don’t appear to have investigated whether there is harm and how you would justify this. In fact, the OFCOM process is not very transparent itself; it’s not clear how they went about assessing the accuracy of these claims.

EM: Isn’t it true though - and this came over in the interview on The World At One - that while Channel Four obviously broadcast this programme, it intends to broadcast Al Gore’s documentary when it becomes available for television, so a range of views are being represented?

BW: That’s true. And one doesn’t object to a range of views. But there has to be a responsibility among broadcasters not to broadcast factually inaccurate information. That must be against the public interest. And I just don’t accept that broadcasting a programme like this, which was inaccurate about a subject as important as climate change, does not harm the public interest. And that unfortunately is what OFCOM said.

We have argued before that what emerges from the hand-wringing about the few moments of broadcasting that challenge environmentalism is not the exposure of the conspiratorial network of ‘well-funded denialists that environmentalists and the likes of David King and Bob Ward want us to believe exists. Indeed, such shrill hectoring better serves to show the environmental movement in its true colours. The fact that Environmentalists have been unable to laugh off or ignore what they regard as inaccurate tosh speaks volumes about the confidence in their own flimsy arguments. Without the argumentative ammunition to make their case politically, they need to make it into a morality tale. Environmentalists need Durkin and the Swindle like a pantomime needs a villain. They’ve written him into the script. If he didn’t exist, they’d have to invent him.

The Swindle has been made a scapegoat by pollsters Ipsos Mori, Bob Ward and his former boss Bob May, George Monbiot and many others desperate to explain the failure of Environmentalism to capture public hearts and minds. One has to wonder, then, what they hope to achieve by raising the profile of the film. The history of censorship shows that the more noise you make about something you regard as an abomination, the more interesting you make it, and the further you undermine your own position. The reaction to the Swindle has, since we began the blog, led us to look more closely at the activities of the Royal Society, and Bob Ward and co themselves. It turns out that his own position is not so spotless.

In June last year, we recorded Bob May, former president of the Royal Society, and Ward’s former boss, lying to an audience in Oxford about the Swindle’s director, Martin Durkin. May told the audience that Durkin was responsible for a three part series denying the link between HIV and AIDS, and that this form of climate scepticism was equivalent to denying the link between passive smoking and lung disease. Where were Bob Ward’s complaints about mispresentation and calls for accuracy? It’s hard to believe that May would have made such an error of fact in public, when he publicly demands that we ‘respect the facts‘. All the more ironic is that in counseling us to ‘respect the facts’, he should made several further errors of fact, not least in the translation of ‘Nullius in Verba’, but also in his statement of fact that ‘15–40 per cent of species potentially facing extinction after only 2°C of warming’, omitting the fact that this is aworst-case scenario predicted by just a single study. Again, where was Bob Ward and his calls for accuracy? He was busy penning inaccuracies of his own, perhaps. In his open letter to Martin Durkin’s Wag TV, one of Five major misrepresentations of the scientific evidence in the film concerned the claim that the global temperature slump in the 1950s and ’60s, which was concurrent with rising emissions of greenhouse gases, was problematic for orthodox global warming arguments. Ward asserted that it is established that this is the result of white aerosols masking the greenhouse effect, and yet mainstream climate scientists we spoke to described the evidence for that as flimsy, and said that the debate continues. Another of the ‘five misrepresentations’ concerned Durkin’s argument that solar activity is a major driver of rising temperatures. The science has long been settled, said Ward. So why did the Royal Society find it necessary to publish new research based on a new dataset to demonstrate that the sun was not responsible for global warming? And just to make sure we got the message, they even launched the research with the strapline ‘the truth about global warming!‘

All this is not to suggest that the weight of evidence points to the sun rather than anthropogenic CO2 as the culprit. We are more concerned with the double standards employed by the Royal Society and its associates, a body that should surely be standing back from the squabbling and providing cool, calm information about the science in all its glorious complexity. A body that deals in a currency of facts needs to be especially careful about how it wields them. Like a body that bangs on about the dodgy financial interests of ‘deniers’ looks rather silly when its own dealings are on the grubby side of squeaky clean.

So, 16 months after the event, we have a report that says Durkin might have stretched the facts a tad, might have been a bit less than entirely honest with his contributors, might not have been quite as balanced as he could have been. And we are supposed to be surprised? It’s a TV programme. We could have got the same answer from a taxi driver as from a shiny report from an unelected quango. Meanwhile a browse through the pretty pie charts in OFCOM’s carbon audit suggests that the number of plastic coffee cups and notepaper used by OFCOM over those 16 months might have had a bigger negative impact on the planet than any seeds of doubt cast by Durkin’s film. If you think that’s a trivial point, then read George Monbiot’s recent comment on the silly affair, where he asks ‘why does Channel 4 seem to be waging a war against the greens?’.

This ‘War against the Greens’ consists of Durkin’s Swindle, his 2000 film about GM technology (an issue which Monbiot cannot claim the scientific establishment in the form of the Royal Society was with him on) and three-part series in 1997 called Against Nature, and a film by a different producer in 1990. And… errr… that’s it. That’s the extent of this ‘war’. Channel 4 broadcasts 24 hours a day, and has done for most of the past 18 years. Of nearly 160,000 hours of programming, this ‘war’ makes up around five hours; just 300 minutes. Monbiot continues:

It is arguable that no organisation in the United Kingdom has done more to damage the effort to protect the environment

If he’s right, then he’s got absolutely nothing to worry about.

Sceptics and critics of Environmentalism have been portrayed as cranks, weirdos and outsiders. You can make your own mind up about the truth of that. What the reaction to them shows, however, is a deep-seated anxiety which is totally disproportionate to reality. Monbiot and Ward’s paranoid hystrionics about the audacity of Channel 4 and Martin Durkin is nothing short of sheer lunacy. Their hypocrisy and unfounded outrage is breath-taking to an extent that it’s hard to actually conceive of an historical, or even pathological precedent. You would have to be seriously off your rocker to imagine that 5 hours of broadcasting over the course of two decades constituted a war, let alone even a mild threat. The real war - if there is a war, some might dare to suggest that it is simply debate about policy in a democratic society - is a war against journalistic freedom to present Greens such as George Monbiot and Mark Ward as the utter lunatics they really are. Fortunately it doesn’t take documentary films to show this; they do it all by themselves. You don’t need to portray Monbiot as a sinister purveyor of authoritarian misanthrophopy; you can just read his column.

Posted by Editors at 9:35 pm
As always, Climate Resistance is right on target.

I find this statement by Bob Ward (quoted above) particularly hilarious:

...one doesn’t object to a range of views. But there has to be a responsibility among broadcasters not to broadcast factually inaccurate information. That must be against the public interest. And I just don’t accept that broadcasting a programme like this, which was inaccurate about a subject as important as climate change, does not harm the public interest.
Bob Ward wants An Inconvenient Truth broadcast. Yes Bob, AIT is not at all inaccurate. -rolleyes-

07-23-08, 12:32 AM
McIntyre on Carl Wunsch and the Swindle:


Tuesday, July 22nd, 2008 at 9:50 pm
The Carl Wunsch Complaint
By Steve McIntyre

Carl Wunsch, whose complaint is considered by Ofcom here page 70), is a distinguished scientist. Wunsch read a copy of our GRL paper prior to publication and commented favorably on it, though he was not prepared to provide any public support. A couple of his papers show the peculiar results that red noise series can produce - an approach arguably similar in spirit to our critique of Mannian PC analysis. (In the discussion of the handling of trends in AR4, the position of Wunsch’s opponents is unaccountably preferred to Wunsch’s.) I met Wunsch briefly in San Francisco; he was a mentor to Peter Huybers, who introduced me to him. Many of his quotes in the Ofcom decision are similar to points that I’ve made here.

Ofcom provided an interesting account of how Wunsch got involved with Swindle, which has obviously been a very radicalizing experience for him.

The issues in the Wunsch complaint were different than the accuracy complaint. They were:

1) whether Wunsch was sufficiently informed about the nature of the film to give informed consent. Here they considered Practice 7.3 which stated:

“Where a person is invited to make a contribution to a programme (except when the subject matter is trivial or their participation minor) they should normally, at an appropriate stage: be told the nature and purpose of the programme, what the programme is about and be given a clear explanation of why they were asked to contribute.”

2) whether the programme misrepresented his views, with Ofcom considering separately at the way “the programme presented Professor Wunsch’s general views and those specifically relating to the presence of CO2 in the ocean.” Here Ofcom relied on Practice 7.6 which states that:

“When a programme is edited, contributions should be represented fairly.”

How Wunsch Came to Be Involved

In Sept 2006, the producers sent Wunsch an email, which Ofcom described as follows:

The Committee noted that Professor Wunsch had been contacted initially by the programme makers via email on 15 September 2006. The initial email advised Professor Wunsch that they were producing a programme “about the climate change debate” and that they had read reports about the “effects of climate change on the Great Ocean Conveyor Belt and the Gulf Stream, and wanted to ask if you agree with the conclusions that they are in imminent danger of shutting down”. The letter went on to say that “We are looking for a contributor to talk to us about whether global warming is having a detrimental effect on the oceans or if it is just the case that we don’t yet have enough information to make it a full gone [sic] conclusion”.

Wunsch promptly replied on Sept 18, 2006 referring to a popular representation of the Gulf Stream as a “fairy tale for grown ups”:

He responded that this was “absolutely not” the case, stating that “you can’t turn the Gulf Stream off as long as the wind blows over the North Atlantic and the earth continues to rotate!” and went on to describe the ’conveyor’ as “a kind of fairy-tale for grownups”. Professor Wunsch said that “I’m willing to talk about these things. I believe that there are all kinds of things happening in the oceans, many highly troubling, but I also believe that one should distinguish what the science tells us and what is merely fantasy”.[/imdemt]

It sounds like things started off on pretty friendly terms. Channel 4 said in its evidence (and I saw no evidence that Wunsch denied this):

[indent]the programme makers swapped anecdotes with him about the absurd apocalyptic reporting of the global warming scare in the press and TV. Channel 4 said the programme makers also informed the complainant of other contributors who it said were well-known for their critical views on the theory of man-made global warming

The parties had a a telephone conversation, memorialized in a contemporary email (which Ofcom accepted as a plausible rendering of the conversation):

“We are making a feature length documentary about global warming for Channel Four in the UK. The aim of the film is to examine critically the notion that recent global warming is primarily caused by industrial emissions of CO2. It explores the scientific evidence which jars with this hypothesis and explores alternative theories such as solar induced climate change. Given the seemingly inconclusive nature of the evidence, it examines the background to the apparent consensus on this issue, and highlights the dangers involved, especially to developing nations, of policies aimed at limiting growth.”

“We would like to do an interview with you to discuss the notion that there is a scientific consensus on the effects of global warming on the Great Ocean Conveyor Belt, the Gulf Stream and the North Atlantic Drift. It has been widely reported that Britain and Western Europe could soon be plunged into a mini ice age, and we would like to show that this is simply not true that they will shut down.

We would like to talk to you about the numerical models and whether they give us a realistic perspective of the impact of climate change on our oceans. We would also like to talk to you about the ‘memory’ of oceans and how it can take varying amounts of time for a disturbance to be readable in the North Atlantic.

Fundamentally, we would like to ask you whether scientists have enough information about the complex nature of our climate system. Do the records go back far enough to identify climate information about the complex nature of our climate system? Do the records go back far enough to identify climate trends, and can we conclusively separate human induced change from natural change?”

So far, everything seems on track. Ofcom also found that the correspondence made it clear that the producers were approaching things from a “skeptical” viewpoint and this had been made clear to Wunsch:

It was also clear from the correspondence that the programme makers intended to do this through exploring theories which went against the scientific consensus and through looking at the potential dangers (in light of the inconclusive evidence of man-made climate change) of policies aimed at limiting industrial growth. The Committee noted that the recorded interview with Professor Wunsch also proceeded on this basis.

Ofcom examined the unedited and edited interview footage. They determined that the topics discussed with Wunsch were in fact the topics listed in the original email and that these were the same topics that Wunsch is shown commenting on:

The Committee noted from the unedited recording of Professor Wunsch’s interview that these were indeed the topics that were raised with the complainant, and were the same ones which Professor Wunsch was shown commenting on in the programme as broadcast.

The Committee noted a number of Wunsch’s statements, which, on their face, are ones that many CA readers would agree with:

“The models are so complicated you can often adjust them in such a way that they do something very exciting.”

“…So there is a bias, there is a very powerful bias within the media and within the science community itself towards results which are dramatisable [sic].”

“I agree that there’s a very serious risk here [with global warming]. But where I begin to disagree is where people say “the data shows” or “my model proves that”, it’s not at that level.

that it is not yet possible to prove that particular changes in our environment are being caused by human industrial activity, and that the media tended to favour those scientific predictions which warned of disaster.”

On many occasions, I’ve observed that, unlike many readers, if I were a policy maker, I would be guided by the advice of major institutions, even if I had personal reservations about the quality of work. Wunsch took a not dis-similar stance:

“most of the time consensus is at least operationally the correct way to proceed, it’s [the issue that is] the need apparently for consensus in the midst of the turmoil of science that is advancing rather more slowly…than we would like.”

So Wunsch obviously contemplated that some sort of “skeptic” production was within the realm of acceptable discourse. Rive and William Connolley would still have hated anything along the lines of what was described in the original Wunsch correspondence. But there was obviously some sort of line that Wunsch felt could be taken. So precisely where did things go awry?

Ofcom Decision

Wunsch’s third and most serious allegation, where he accused the producers of coming “close to fraud”, was characterized by Ofcom as follows:

Professor Wunsch said that the programme makers used his contribution, through its context, to imply that CO2 was all natural, coming from the ocean, and that therefore the human element is irrelevant. Professor Wunsch said he had told the programme makers that a warming ocean could expel more CO2 than it absorbs – thus worryingly exacerbating the greenhouse gas build-up in the atmosphere. Professor Wunsch said that the use of his remarks in this way came close to fraud.

This accusation was rejected in its entirety as follows:

However, in the Committee’s opinion Professor Wunsch’s comments in this respect had not been primarily to warn of the dangers of warming the ocean (as Professor Wunsch had suggested in his complaint). Rather the references had been used to make the point that the relationship between carbon dioxide and atmospheric temperature is complicated. In the Committee’s view, it was entirely at the programme maker’s editorial discretion to decide whether to include these comments in the programme.

In relation to Head b(ii) the Committee therefore found that the programme maker’s editing of Professor Wunsch’s comments about the presence of CO2 in the ocean did not result in unfairness in the programme as broadcast. Accordingly the Committee did not uphold this part of Professor Wunsch’s complaint.

Although Ofcom rejected this complaint, Wunsch’s other two complaints were upheld. Ofcom found that Wunsch had not been adequately warned under Practice 7.3 of the aggressive polemical turn that the production itself would take and for which there was little hint in his correspondence and actual interview. Ofcom:

it found no indication that Professor Wunsch had been informed of the polemical line that the programme would take, for example that the programme would state that the public was “being told lies” and the “scientific evidence does not support the notion that climate is driven by carbon dioxide, man-made or otherwise”. In the circumstances, the Committee considered that Professor Wunsch was not provided with adequate information to enable him to give informed consent for his participation.

While Wunsch may well have been naive, the obligation to comply with Practice 7.3 rested with the producers regardless of potential naivete on Wunsch’s part. I’m sure that Wunsch was bullied by climate scientists of all stripes after the fact, but I’m sure that his complaint was not due to this bullying but to a sincere belief that he had not been properly informed. Under UK legislation, he was entitled to complain to Ofcom and did so. The unfortunate outcome of this seems to have been the radicalization of Wunsch, who now sounds as strident as anyone else, and it will take him a long time to chill out.

The final issue related to whether there had been selective editing that breached Practice 7.6 by forming an inaccurate overall impression of Wunsch’s views was conveyed. Ofcom quoted the following comments from the unedited interview that hadn’t been used, finding that the failure to represent this aspect of Wunsch’s position was unfair in the context of the production.

“So it isn’t the consensus per se that is the issue, and most of the time consensus is at least operationally the correct way to proceed, it’s [the issue that is] the need apparently for consensus in the midst of the turmoil of science that is advancing rather more slowly…than we would like.”

“The consensus that emerges through the IPCC [Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change] process is generally a reasonable one. But very little of it can actually be proven in the sense that one might say, okay, I can demonstrate to you that Newton’s laws of motion will describe the flight of a ball…”

“I believe a consensus of most scientists who work in climate, given that it is a rather young science, without sufficiently long records, is that there is a very real threat of global warming. Most of the data we have do show that the Earth is warming up, has been warming roughly over the last 100 years. The extent to which this is anthropogenic is the subject of fierce debate. There is a consensus I think of the great majority of scientists that there’s strong evidence that a big part of it, if not most of it, is anthropogenic…And even were it to turn out that it was natural, the threat to humans is very much the same. And one might argue that there has been too much debate about whether it is anthropogenic and whether is it natural and too little attention paid, first of all what are we going to do if this continues to happen? Because there will be real effect on human beings even if it were natural.”

“The healthy science says that, “yeah, there is a working story, but at the same time there are problems with it”, and it’s quite possible that many of the elements that go into the consensus in ten years’ time will be understood actually not to have been true or as accurate as people thought.”

Thus although Ofcom found that the programme fairly represented Wunsch’s view in respect to the matters discussed on air, they found that the exclusion of other views in the context of the program amounted to selective editing. That seems fair enough to me. Lots of people feel that they were ill used in a program but don’t believe that they are in a position to do anything about it. In this case, there was legislation enabling Wunsch to make a complaint. Wunsch did so and received a fair hearing. Would that we’d been so lucky in our FOI requests.

Readers should note that Wunsch’s complaint had nothing to do with the long Rive et al complaint. Wunsch’s complaint was about personal unfairness under Practice 7.3 and 7.6. Ofcom’s findings in respect to Wunsch, which seem reasonable enough to me, have nothing to do with their findings (virtually total rejection) of the Rive complaint - which again seems reasonable enough to me.

Tomorrow, I’ll finish off with a discussion of the IPCC finding, where there is an interesting link to our FOI inquiries.
To me the Wunsch part of this is the most peculiar. The guy was told exactly where the producers were coming from. Supposedly, they didn't tell him strongly enough or some such nonsense. And they didn't tell him they may not use what he said on every subject they talked about in filming or some such other nonsense. What does a documentary filmmaker have to do for British TV, anyway? In this I disagree with McIntyre (who is known for leaning over backward to be fair - nothing wrong with that, I just think it is totally undeserved in this case).

I think Wunsch (who was somewhere in the middle of the CAGW controversy) was bullied and goaded by the alarmists after Swindle was aired and felt he had to do this complaining baloney.

I think, as King, Wunsch was also thrown a bone by Ofcom, but that he's even less deserving of it than King (who at least actually had a quote of someone else mistakenly attributed to him).

Furthermore, I think Wunsch is considerably smarter and more fair minded (at least before Swindle) than King. King wouldn't concede a skeptical point if it were conclusively proven. If gravity were climate science, he'd be someone who, after Galileo demonstrated that lighter objects fall at (virtually) the same speed as heavier objects, would still insist they don't. Wunsch was not like that. But he seems to have caved to the pressure from alarmists.

07-23-08, 08:04 AM

07-23-08, 05:26 PM
McIntyre on the IPCC and the Swindle:


Wednesday, July 23rd, 2008 at 1:15 pm
Ofcom: The IPCC Complaint
By Steve McIntyre

Ofcom’s disposition of the IPCC Complaint is here page 43. There are many interesting aspects to this decision that are distinct from any of the others. Ofcom’s actual finding is extremely narrow. IT rejected 2 of 6 complaints. On 3 of 6, it determined that the producers had provided notice to IPCC but the notice on Feb 27, 2007 did not leave IPCC with “reasonable time” to respond prior to the airing on March 8, 2007 (though Ofcom itself states that “three working days” is a “reasonable time” for the parties to file an appeal of the present decision. They also determined that the producers failed to give IPCC adequate notice that someone in the production would say that they were “politically driven”. Had the producers sent their email of Feb 27, 2007 on (say) Feb 20, 2007, including a mention in the email that one of the contributors stated that IPCC was “politically driven”, then the Swindle producers would appear to have been immune from the present findings. Little things do matter.

The two rejected claims are themselves rather interesting and make you scratch your head. As discussed below, Swindle contributors were said to have claimed that IPCC had predicted climate disaster and the northward migration of malaria as a result of global warming. IPCC denied ever making such claims and apparently felt that its reputation was sullied by being associated with such claims. These two matters were decided on other grounds, but many readers will be interested to read more about IPCC disassociating itself from claims that global warming would cause northward migration of malaria or predictions of climate disaster.

In addition, in its complaint, IPCC made grandiose claims about its “open and transparent process” and the role of review editors, describing the process as being in the public domain and by its nature designed to avoid “undue influence” of any reviewer. This will come as somewhat of a surprise to CA readers, who are familiar with the avoidance of IPCC procedures by Ammann and Briffa and the seemingly casual performance of review editor Mitchell and who have been following the relentless stonewalling by IPCC and IPCC officials of requests for specific information pertaining to this allegedly “open and transparent process”.

Two Rejected Complaints

They discarded two parts of the complaint entirely.

IPCC denied that it had claimed that malaria “will” spread as a result of global warming (as stated by Channel 4) and said that it was unfair for Channel 4 to have broadcast this claim without their having an adequate opportunity to respond. The claim was decided on other grounds (that the allegation by Paul Reiter did not mention specifically mention IPCC). However, many readers will be surprised and interested to know that IPCC considers that its reputation is diminished by attributing to it the view that malaria will spread as a result of global warming.

IPCC complained that the “programme falsely claimed that its FAR (1990) predicted “climatic disaster as a result of global warming” without an opportunity to defend itself against the indignity of being accused of making such a claim. It’s a relief to the rest of us to know that not only is the IPCC not predicting climatic disaster, but it considers being associated with such a claim to be an insult. Ofcom considered some interesting contemporary evidence, including a speech by Margaret Thatcher, the scientific content of which was approved by Houghton, and came to the view that this was not an unreasonable characterization. Their decision on this issue stated:

the Committee considered that the comment that described the FAR (1990) as predicting “climatic disaster as a result of global warming” was not an allegation against the IPCC and was not unfair to it. It was not, therefore, incumbent on the programme makers to have offered the IPCC an appropriate and timely opportunity to respond to this particular comment.

The most interesting part of these two issues were the IPCC defences.

Three Issues where the notice was insufficiently timely
On three parts of the Complaint (Reiter’s criticism of the malaria section of the IPCC report, Reiter’s criticism of how IPCC made up its author lists, Seitz’ criticism of the SAR-Santer fiasco), Ofcom found that Swindle had provided notice to IPCC within the requirements, but had failed to provide IPCC with enough time to respond.

What would be a reasonable amount of time? Ofcom says in their Guidelines for the handling of standards complaints and cases (in programmes and sponsorship) that three working days is a “reasonable time” for an appeal, 5 working days for broadcasters to deliver any requested material and 10 working days to deliver certain sorts of detailed written submissions.

While the producers had preliminary contact with IPCC in October 2006 (as a result of which they were referred to a website), the first notice to IPCC that they would be presenting the Reiter and Seitz allegations came on Feb 26, 2007 (a Monday). to which there was no response. A follow-up email was sent three days later on March 1, 2007, again with no response. At the time of the show’s first airing on March 8, 2007, ten days (8 working days) after the first notice letter, IPCC had still sent no response. Nor did it send one prior to the second airing. Ofcom noted:

the IPCC is a large organisation with considerable resources at its disposal and that it employs a dedicated Information and Communications Officer. On the face of it, these factors might be taken to suggest the IPCC should have been in a position to respond to the programme makers’ emails (subject to being provided with sufficient information about the allegations that would be made in the programme)

On the other hand, Ofcom noted that the producers had failed to properly inform IPCC of the deadlines:

As mentioned above, it was significant that the programme maker’s email of 26 February 2007 gave the IPCC no indication of when its response was required and the follow-up email of 1 March 2007 (sent at 7.33pm) subsequently gave a deadline of the following day. Neither of these emails indicated the date of broadcast.

Taking into account all the above factors, the Committee considered that it was unreasonable for the programme makers to have expected the IPCC to understand that its response was required in a matter of days, and that it was not reasonable to expect the IPCC to be able to provide a response within the one day of being advised of the deadline. The Committee therefore found that the opportunity to respond had not been offered in a timely way.

On these particular findings, there’s a process lesson about the need for clear and unequivocal notice. In this particular case, it seems highly unlikely that IPCC was going to bother responding in any event. So the producers could easily have avoided this particular problem merely by giving clearer and somewhat more informative notice. For example, had they sent out the email on Feb 20, 2007 instead of Feb 27, 2007, notifying the IPCC of their deadline, then it’s hard to see how these parts of the IPCC complaint could have even got as far as they did.

I note that it appears that IPCC itself did not even file the “IPCC Complaint”. It appears to be another concoction by Rado and associates. Their website says that:

Sir John Houghton … co-authorised our Fairness complaint on behalf of the IPCC…. Dr Pachauri co-authorised our Fairness complaint on behalf of the IPCC. …Martin Parry also co-authorised our Fairness complaint on behalf of the IPCC… Professor [Robert] Watson co-authorised our Fairness complaint on behalf of the IPCC.”

which I take this as evidence that IPCC itself did not author the complaint. Normally, in order to be heard by Ofcom, a “fairness” complaint has to be made by the person directly affected. There are situations in which a third party can be authorized to make the complaint; I haven’t examined whether these situations apply here.

However the form of IPCC “authorization” seems highly curious. John Houghton supposedly “co-authorised our Fairness complaint on behalf of the IPCC”. While Houghton has obviously been an important figure in the IPCC movement, he is not listed at the IPCC website as one of its present officers and would not appear to have sufficient current authority to “authorize” the complaint. Robert Watson’s appearance on this list is also interesting. Watson is likewise not listed as an current IPCC officer; Rado’s website states that Watson is currently DEFRA’s Chief Scientific Adviser. That a DEFRA employee should perceive himself as having the authority to authorize the commencement of an action in the U.K. on behalf of IPCC, which, under other circumstance, asserts its immunity rights as an international organization, is intriguing to say the least.

A “Political” Organization

The last “issue” in play was the statement by Philip Stott that IPCC was a “politically driven” organization.

Dr Philip Stott: “The IPCC, like any UN body, is political. The final conclusions are politically driven.”

This matter differed somewhat from the 3 considered under the previous head in that no notice was given to the IPCC in their Feb 26, 2007 email that the production would say that they are “political”.

In its defence, Channel 4 said

the programme contributor, Dr Philip Stott, was merely making a statement of fact. Channel 4 said the programme made the important and valid point that the IPCC is political as well as scientific. Channel 4 said the IPCC chairmen and authors are nominated by governments and the reports are viewed by government officials prior to publication. Further, Channel 4 said the IPCC had been criticised on a number of occasions for being hampered by political interference. Channel 4 therefore maintained it was entirely fair for Professor Stott to state that the IPCC is “politically driven”.

The IPCC response will be particularly intriguing to Climate Audit readers who have followed IPCC’s refusal to provide a complete archive of its Review Comments and Responses (in direct breach of their own formal procedures), a refusal abetted by corresponding refusals of national FOI requests. Ofcom summarizes their response:

In relation to the IPCC being “politically driven”, the IPCC said that the requirement for openness and transparency in its processes ensured that it was impossible for any undue interference to take place or any undue pressure to be applied by any reviewer (government or otherwise).

The IPCC said the government expert reviewer is free to ask any lead author to reconsider what they have written, but based solely on scientific content. The lead author will then consider the comment or request for change. If the lead author then wishes to make the change, he/she has to account for the decision to his/her review editor, who will make the final decision. Such changes must then be documented and the results made public.

The IPCC said that, given the IPCC’s own procedures, Channel 4’s arguments in relation to this head of complaint were either ill-informed or disingenuous.

Huh? This is not a true description of the process that I’ve experienced or that has been documented here. “Disingenuous” - they must be taking etiquette lessons from Michael Mann.

In terms of my own personal experience, we know that Ammann evaded the formal “open and transparent” process by sending review comments about our work outside the properly instituted process and that the parties have subsequently refused to produce the presumably adverse comments. Did these exchanges result in “undue interference” or “undue pressure” by a reviewer? The purpose of the “open and transparent” process is to do what IPCC represented to Ofcom that it did. Too bad that it’s not a true description.

Similarly with the role of the Review Editors. IPCC testified to Ofcom that the “review editor” made the final decision. But Review Editor Mitchell has said that these decisions were up to Briffa and the chapter authors. Although IPCC says here that this process is “public”, IPCC has refused to provide Mitchell’s comments and Mitchell has concocted absurd and untrue reasons to avoid producing the comments (even claiming that he acted as an IPCC review editor in a “personal” capacity and that he has destroyed all his IPCC correspondence).

Here’s how Ofcom decided this matter:

In the Committee’s opinion, viewers would have understood from the full section (quoted above) that the IPCC was not a purely scientific body and that its ‘scientific’ conclusions were significantly tainted by political interests.

The Committee considered that such an impression went to the core of the IPCC’s function and reputation: in this regard it noted that the IPCC was set up following international governmental accord with the aim of producing objective scientific assessments to inform policy and decision making worldwide. The Committee considered that “politically driven” was a strong and potentially damaging allegation which, within the context of this part of the programme, suggested direct political influence and was clearly intended to call into question the credibility of the IPCC….

… In the circumstances, the Committee concluded that the IPCC was not afforded a timely or appropriate opportunity to respond to the significant allegation that the conclusions of the IPCC were “politically driven”. This resulted in unfairness to the IPCC in the programme as broadcast.


So what exactly did IPCC win? Ofcom said that the producers should have given them more adequate notice time for Reiter’s allegations about the review of the malaria section and the listing of authors and for Seitz’ allegations about SAR and for the assertion that they would say that IPCC was “politically driven”.

Did Ofcom opine on whether IPCC was giving good or bad reports? Nope. It stuck to knitting and rendered carefully reasoned decisions on whether the producers gave adequate notice to someone being criticized, as required under the Broadcasting Code.


Now look at the crowing about this decision by IPCC officials.


We are pleased to note that Ofcom has vindicated the IPCC’s claim against Channel Four in spirit and in substance, and upheld most of the formal complaints made by those who respect the IPCC process. It is heartening to see that the review process of the IPCC, and the credibility of the publications of the IPCC were upheld, as was the claim that Channel Four did not give the Panel adequate time to respond to most of their allegations. The IPCC is an organization that brings together the best experts from all over the world committed to working on an objective assessment of all aspects of climate change. The relevance and integrity of its work cannot be belittled by misleading or irresponsible reporting. We express our appreciation of the Fairness Committee at Ofcom, and are satisfied with their rulings on this matter.

Some of this is simply untrue. Ofcom did not “uphold” the review process of the IPCC or the credibility of IPCC publications. Neither did it trash them. It simply did not consider them. Pachauri is totally misrepresenting the decision.


The ruling today from Ofcom regarding the Great Global Warming Swindle programme has exposed the misleading and false information regarding the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) that was contained in that programme and that has been widely disseminated by the climate denying community. The integrity of the IPCC’s reports has therefore been confirmed as has their value as a source of accurate and reliable information about climate change.

Again, all completely untrue. The Ofcom decision did “not expose the misleading and false information” regarding IPCC nor did it “confirm the integrity of the IPCC reports”. Nor did it endorse the programme nor did it trash the integrity of the reports. It didn’t make any decision on them one way or another. It simply said that the producers failed to give IPCC enough notice to respond.

Robert Watson

I am pleased that Ofcom recognized the serious inaccuracies in the Global Warming Swindle and has helped set the record straight.

Again untrue. Ofcom did nothing of the sort. It made no attempt whatever to sort out the scientific disputes.

Martin Parry:

This is excellent news. People and policymakers need to have confidence in the science of climate change. The reputation of the IPCC as the source of dependable and high quality information has been fully upheld by this Ofcom ruling. Channel 4’s Great Global Warming Swindle was itself a disreputable attempt to swindle the public of the confidence it needs in scientific advice.

Again completely untrue. The Ofcom ruling did not “uphold” the “reputation of the IPCC as the source of dependable and high quality information”. Nor did it disparage its reputation. It simply said that IPCC didn’t get enough time to respond.

These untrue statements about the Ofcom decision have not been criticized by Michael Tobis and other commentators.
I think it's pretty clear that the allegations against the program are basically untrue (about not giving enough "notice") and, even if true are a big "so what?" As Mcintyre points out, almost everything the alarmists are saying about the decision as it pertains to the IPCC is false. One last time, the complainants are thrown a bone and it's a fake bone made of rubber. Let them chew on it. We know they will be claiming victory from now until doomsday which is coming pretty soon according to them.

So there you have it. Probably no television program in history has been subjected to as much scrutiny as The Great Global Warming Swindle. It was found the program did not mislead the public and bones that were thrown to the complainants were so much twaddle. Then alarmists went berserk and threw everything they could at TGGWS. It is virtually unscathed. And I know I've said it before but it bears repeating. After the first broadcast, a few (real) errors were pointed out and one scientist who appeared in the program complained although he had no grounds for complaining. TGGWS corrected the errors and edited out the whiny scientist although they had no responsibility, legal or moral, to do so. When have you ever heard of a program doing this?

Compare TGGWS with AIT, Michael Moore's films or the conservative films such as Outfoxed or Expelled. Or particularly, with dozens of alarmist TV shows and "news" stories from the alarmist perspective that are full of falsehoods, slander skeptics and give no notification or opportunity to respond. It's downright ludicrous.

Oh, one last thing: Probably very few of you, if any, have actually seen The Great Global Warming Swindle. I don't agree with everything in there but it is an excellent program and you can get the NTSC DVD here:



The PAL DVD is available at Amazon.co.uk.


07-23-08, 05:29 PM

07-23-08, 06:56 PM
Ok, here's one for movielib :

No smoking hot spot

| July 18, 2008

I DEVOTED six years to carbon accounting, building models for the Australian Greenhouse Office. I am the rocket scientist who wrote the carbon accounting model (FullCAM) that measures Australia's compliance with the Kyoto Protocol, in the land use change and forestry sector.

FullCAM models carbon flows in plants, mulch, debris, soils and agricultural products, using inputs such as climate data, plant physiology and satellite data. I've been following the global warming debate closely for years.

When I started that job in 1999 the evidence that carbon emissions caused global warming seemed pretty good: CO2 is a greenhouse gas, the old ice core data, no other suspects.

The evidence was not conclusive, but why wait until we were certain when it appeared we needed to act quickly? Soon government and the scientific community were working together and lots of science research jobs were created. We scientists had political support, the ear of government, big budgets, and we felt fairly important and useful (well, I did anyway). It was great. We were working to save the planet.

But since 1999 new evidence has seriously weakened the case that carbon emissions are the main cause of global warming, and by 2007 the evidence was pretty conclusive that carbon played only a minor role and was not the main cause of the recent global warming. As Lord Keynes famously said, "When the facts change, I change my mind. What do you do, sir?"

There has not been a public debate about the causes of global warming and most of the public and our decision makers are not aware of the most basic salient facts:

1. The greenhouse signature is missing. We have been looking and measuring for years, and cannot find it.

Each possible cause of global warming has a different pattern of where in the planet the warming occurs first and the most. The signature of an increased greenhouse effect is a hot spot about 10km up in the atmosphere over the tropics. We have been measuring the atmosphere for decades using radiosondes: weather balloons with thermometers that radio back the temperature as the balloon ascends through the atmosphere. They show no hot spot. Whatsoever.

If there is no hot spot then an increased greenhouse effect is not the cause of global warming. So we know for sure that carbon emissions are not a significant cause of the global warming. If we had found the greenhouse signature then I would be an alarmist again.

When the signature was found to be missing in 2007 (after the latest IPCC report), alarmists objected that maybe the readings of the radiosonde thermometers might not be accurate and maybe the hot spot was there but had gone undetected. Yet hundreds of radiosondes have given the same answer, so statistically it is not possible that they missed the hot spot.

Recently the alarmists have suggested we ignore the radiosonde thermometers, but instead take the radiosonde wind measurements, apply a theory about wind shear, and run the results through their computers to estimate the temperatures. They then say that the results show that we cannot rule out the presence of a hot spot. If you believe that you'd believe anything.

2. There is no evidence to support the idea that carbon emissions cause significant global warming. None. There is plenty of evidence that global warming has occurred, and theory suggests that carbon emissions should raise temperatures (though by how much is hotly disputed) but there are no observations by anyone that implicate carbon emissions as a significant cause of the recent global warming.

3. The satellites that measure the world's temperature all say that the warming trend ended in 2001, and that the temperature has dropped about 0.6C in the past year (to the temperature of 1980). Land-based temperature readings are corrupted by the "urban heat island" effect: urban areas encroaching on thermometer stations warm the micro-climate around the thermometer, due to vegetation changes, concrete, cars, houses. Satellite data is the only temperature data we can trust, but it only goes back to 1979. NASA reports only land-based data, and reports a modest warming trend and recent cooling. The other three global temperature records use a mix of satellite and land measurements, or satellite only, and they all show no warming since 2001 and a recent cooling.

4. The new ice cores show that in the past six global warmings over the past half a million years, the temperature rises occurred on average 800 years before the accompanying rise in atmospheric carbon. Which says something important about which was cause and which was effect.

None of these points are controversial. The alarmist scientists agree with them, though they would dispute their relevance.

The last point was known and past dispute by 2003, yet Al Gore made his movie in 2005 and presented the ice cores as the sole reason for believing that carbon emissions cause global warming. In any other political context our cynical and experienced press corps would surely have called this dishonest and widely questioned the politician's assertion.

Until now the global warming debate has merely been an academic matter of little interest. Now that it matters, we should debate the causes of global warming.

So far that debate has just consisted of a simple sleight of hand: show evidence of global warming, and while the audience is stunned at the implications, simply assert that it is due to carbon emissions.

In the minds of the audience, the evidence that global warming has occurred becomes conflated with the alleged cause, and the audience hasn't noticed that the cause was merely asserted, not proved.

If there really was any evidence that carbon emissions caused global warming, don't you think we would have heard all about it ad nauseam by now?

The world has spent $50 billion on global warming since 1990, and we have not found any actual evidence that carbon emissions cause global warming. Evidence consists of observations made by someone at some time that supports the idea that carbon emissions cause global warming. Computer models and theoretical calculations are not evidence, they are just theory.

What is going to happen over the next decade as global temperatures continue not to rise? The Labor Government is about to deliberately wreck the economy in order to reduce carbon emissions. If the reasons later turn out to be bogus, the electorate is not going to re-elect a Labor government for a long time. When it comes to light that the carbon scare was known to be bogus in 2008, the ALP is going to be regarded as criminally negligent or ideologically stupid for not having seen through it. And if the Liberals support the general thrust of their actions, they will be seen likewise.

The onus should be on those who want to change things to provide evidence for why the changes are necessary. The Australian public is eventually going to have to be told the evidence anyway, so it might as well be told before wrecking the economy.

Dr David Evans was a consultant to the Australian Greenhouse Office from 1999 to 2005.


07-23-08, 10:39 PM
Ok, here's one for movielib :

No smoking hot spot

I like that one. See Post #181. ;)

07-23-08, 11:25 PM
And now for something completely different. Funny Stephen Colbert video:


07-24-08, 08:45 AM
It's unlikely, if not nigh impossible that the British situation with an official body judging the "fairness" of a television program would exist in America (at least since the unlamented demise of the "Fairness Doctrine"). Here's a comment:


July 22, 2008
The Swindle Ruling, British Culture, and Freedom of Expression
Posted to Author: Pielke Jr., R. | Science + Politics

If you are paying attention to the latest dust up over climate change then you know that a judgment has been rendered (PDF) by the relevant British authority (OFCOM) on complaints about the airing of a controversial documentary by UK Channel 4 challenging consensus climate science and politics, titled The Great Global Warming Swindle.

The decision has led to a wide range of reactions and commentary (e.g., NYT's Andy Revkin, Climate Audit's Steve McIntyre, former IPCC chairman Bob Watson, and many, many others). Here I'd like to address several points that have nothing to do with the substance of the complaint or UK laws governing the public media, but rather the broader issues raised by the controversy for the role of scientists in seeking to limit freedom of expression.

First off, it is probably hard for many non-British (and perhaps even some Brits) to make sense of what is actually going on. Here is my take on the situation, and any UK politics/media experts who may be reading are invited to weigh in and correct or clarify. I paid my 2007 BBC License Fee so I am of course eminently qualified to opine;-) UK Channel 4 is a public television station, and as such its programming falls under certain legislative requirements (a "broadcasting code"), which are enforced by an independent regulatory agency called the Office of Communication or OFCOM.

The very fact that there is such an "Office of Communication" with a mandate to regulate the details of non-profane programming content may strike many Americans as somewhat strange. In a U.S. context restricting what can be said on broadcast television, even public television, is limited in practice to the profane or indecent, and even here the threshold is fairly high (judging by what I let my children watch), if consistently Puritan. Just this week a U.S. federal court threw out a complaint of indecency regarding the Janet Jackson-Justin Timberlake, ahem, Super Bowl "wardrobe malfunction."

On the British side there is a much longer history of attention to libel in the form of speech but also to the government role in making citizens aware of risks (, e.g., "Mind the Gap"). Academics have called government role in protecting its citizens the "risk society" following the work of Ulrich Beck, and those criticizing such paternalism, from both the ends of the political spectrum, have disparagingly labeled this role as that of a "nanny state." In short, the fact that OFCOM is rendering a decision on the content of a documentary (much less its far more discussed decision on the content of the reality show Big Brother) is an idiosyncratically British situation that raises important questions about the role of the government in overseeing what information is allowed to be presented to its citizens, in this case via a publicly owned, but commercially funded television. As such, understanding this debate has less to do with the issue of climate change than it does with British politics, history, and culture.

On the other hand, because many of the complainants are scientists, some not even British, another important perspective on this debate is the role of scientists and other academics in efforts to limit the freedom of expression. Arguably, the global scientific community shares a set of norms on the free exchange of information that, while shaped by each of our national and cultural settings, also transcends those situational factors. For example, the value of peer review in scientific publishing knows no national boundaries and is a broadly shared value in the scientific community. Freedom of expression would also seem to have broad support, whether that expression is in the form of shared environmental data or the opinions of government scientists that differ from their political bosses.

On climate change however, some in the scientific community have departed quite radically from support for freedom of expression. For example, recently NASA's James Hansen has famously called for trials of those who have provided support for the dissemination of skeptical perspectives on climate change, singling out executives in energy companies. Similarly, Joe Romm, of the Center for American Progress, has called for an editor of a newsletter of the American Physical Society to be fired and his colleagues at the APS to be subject to an email pressure campaign for inviting and publishing an article taking issue with the IPCC consensus. Closer to home, in early 2007, I was told by an official at my own university that some of my academic peers from other institutions had contacted our university administration complaining about the apparently heretical public positions that I had expressed on climate change and warned me to "think of my career" before making such statements in the future. Thankfully, when I complained to a wider circle of administrators this official apologized for the comment (a "misunderstanding," of course) and other CU officials apparently ignored the complaint. These examples of formal and informal sanctions are all used to try to limit the freedom of expression on the subject of climate change.

Should scientists and other academics be working for restrictions on the freedom of expression on climate change, or perhaps sanctions for those expressing or allowing the expression of certain views?

Let me make my position clear -- No.

My views are no doubt shaped (maybe determined) by my cultural upbringing as an American and as an academic, and my inclination as a philosophical pragmatist. Here is what Oliver Wendell Holmes (a famous pragmatist) had to say about free expression (for a review of the history of the First Amendment see Anthony Lewis):

[I]f there is any principle of the Constitution that more imperatively calls for attachment than any other it is the principle of free thought - not free thought for those who agree with us but freedom for the thought that we hate.

More specific to academia, in 1975 Yale University published a report on freedom of expression (PDF)which was adopted as formal university policy and is often referred to as a authoritative statement in support of freedom of expression. Here is an excerpt of some of its eloquent and forceful prose (emphases added):

The primary function of a university is to discover and disseminate knowledge by means of research and teaching. To fulfill this function a free interchange of ideas is necessary not only within its walls but with the world beyond as well. It follows that the university must do everything possible to ensure within it the fullest degree of intellectual freedom. The history of intellectual growth and discovery clearly demonstrates the need for unfettered freedom, the right to think the unthinkable, discuss the unmentionable, and challenge the unchallengeable. To curtail free expression strikes twice at intellectual freedom, for whoever deprives another of the right to state unpopular views necessarily also deprives others of the right to listen to those views.

We take a chance, as the First Amendment takes a chance, when we commit ourselves to the idea that the results of free expression are to the general benefit in the long run, however unpleasant they may appear at the time. The validity of such a belief cannot be demonstrated conclusively. It is a belief of recent historical development, even within universities, one embodied in American constitutional doctrine but not widely shared outside the academic world, and denied in theory and in practice by much of the world most of the time.

On the obligations of academics (and I would argue that the responsibility extends to scientists at research institutions that are not universities, such as government labs), the report states:

We value freedom of expression precisely because it provides a forum for the new, the provocative, the disturbing, and the unorthodox. Free speech is a barrier to the tyranny of authoritarian or even majority opinion as to the rightness or wrongness of particular doctrines or thoughts.

If the priority assigned to free expression by the nature of a university is to be maintained in practice, clearly the responsibility for maintaining that priority rests with its members. By voluntarily taking up membership in a university and thereby asserting a claim to its rights and privileges, members also acknowledge the existence of certain obligations upon themselves and their fellows. Above all, every member of the university has an obligation to permit free expression in the university. No member has a right to prevent such expression. Every official of the university, moreover, has a special obligation to foster free expression and to ensure that it is not obstructed.

It is troubling to see academics and scientists working hard to sanction certain people because of what they say, rather than taking on the arguments on their merits, as frustrating and difficult a task that might seem to be at times. Some might argue that the threat of climate change is so important that we cannot allow certain voices to be heard. The Yale report says of such perspectives:

We have considered the opposing argument that behavior which violates these social and ethical considerations should be made subject to formal sanctions, and the argument that such behavior entitles others to prevent speech they might regard as offensive. Our conviction that the central purpose of the university is to foster the free access of knowledge compels us to reject both of these arguments. They assert a right to prevent free expression. They rest upon the assumption that speech can be suppressed by anyone who deems it false or offensive. They deny what Justice Holmes termed "freedom for the thought that we hate." They make the majority, or any willful minority, the arbiters of truth for all. If expression may be prevented, censored or punished, because of its content or because of the motives attributed to those who promote it, then it is no longer free. It will be subordinated to other values that we believe to be of lower priority in a university.

The conclusions we draw, then, are these: even when some members of the university community fail to meet their social and ethical responsibilities, the paramount obligation of the university is to protect their right to free expression.

So while I don't really have an informed or relevant position on UK media regulations or even on the substance of the Swindle program, I do feel strongly that the current wave of climate blasphemy that seems to be popular among prominent scientists involved in the climate issue is one day going to be looked back upon as a low point in this debate. Climate change is important, but so too are other values, and freedom of expression is among them.
"Office of Communications" sounds rather 1984-ish to me.

07-24-08, 08:50 AM
During his testimony Sen. Barbara Boxer confronted Dr. Spencer by saying that he was made the official meteorologist of the Rush Limbaugh radio show. In response, Limbaugh has made Sen. Boxer the Official Clown of the Rush Limbaugh radio show.

07-24-08, 08:55 AM


TV ads cause carbon carnage
July 22, 2008 09:10pm

AUSTRALIAN television advertising is producing as much as 57 tonnes of carbon dioxide per hour, and thirty second ad breaks are among the worst offenders, according to audit figures from pitch consultants TrinityP3.

Carbon emissions are particularly strong during high-rating programs such as the final episodes of the Ten Network’s Biggest Loser, which produced 2135kgs per 30 second ad, So You Think You Can Dance at 2061kg for every 30 seconds, closely followed by the Seven News 6pm news at 1689kg and Border Security at 1802kg.

TrinityP3 managing director Darren Woolley said emissions are calculated by measuring a broadcasters’ power consumption and that of a consumer watching an ad on television in their home, B&T Magazine reports.

“We look at the number of households and the number of TVs, and then the proportion of TVs that are plasma, LCD or traditional, and calculate energy consumption based on those factors,” Woolley said.

TrinityP3 is formalising a standard carbon footprint measurement of advertising, which it claims will be the first of its kind.

“Most companies have been obliged to think through their strategies on reducing carbon emissions and they need to remember that their marketing strategies do have an environmental impact that needs to be included. This is not something that is easily able to be measured,” Mr Woolley said.

“Reality television is interesting as the more viewers and voters that tune in, the higher the carbon footprint. The more people vote, the more it adds to the CO2 in the atmosphere.

“When Big Brother launched in Australia in 2001, advertising in the program contributed over 1200kg of CO2 into the environment. By series eight this year, the decreasing number of viewers decreased its carbon footprint by 50%.

“However, the Biggest Loser is the biggest loser on the environment with a massive 57 tonnes of CO2 per hour produced by the advertising that ran during the final,” he said.
How much "carbon carnage" is produced from these moronic "studies"?

07-24-08, 09:14 AM

07-24-08, 03:56 PM
Review of tonight's Penn & Teller Bullshit show, "Being Green" (spoiler tags now removed):



They've got that global warming thing down cold
Posted on Wed, Jul. 23, 2008

• Penn & Teller's Bull----!
10-10:30 p.m. [EDT] Thursday, Showtime

I've seen lots of things on Penn & Teller's Bull----!, television's only investigative-journalism program run by comic magicians: Hidden-camera pranks where yuppie fools blather on about designer water that actually came from a garden hose. New Age health nuts allowing mollusks to crawl around on their faces to soak up the health benefits of slug slime. Naked people floating around in a zero-gravity chamber for a show on NASA. I don't actually know what that one was supposed to prove, but Penn & Teller share my first rule of journalism, that naked is always good.

But one thing I haven't seen is grim; the show is just too much fun for that. So when Thursday's episode on environmentalism opened with a morose-looking Penn Jillette waving a magazine as he recited one ecotastrophe after another -- drought in Africa, flooding in Pakistan and Japan, snowless winters in New England and Northern Europe -- I snapped to attention. ''It says right here in Time magazine -- the weather's gone nuts and we humans are to blame!'' Teller wailed. ``We have bleeped up the environment and now we're going to pay for it!''

Yeah, that global warming is pretty bad. You know, Al Gore says -- oops, never mind. Turns out Penn's not reading from the infamous Time cover story of 2006 on global warming, the one headlined BE WORRIED. BE VERY WORRIED. No, this Time is from 1974, and the headline is, ANOTHER ICE AGE? And all those violent paroxysms of nature are the pernicious work of global cooling.

Yes, back in the days of disco, the news media echoed with predictions of the world's imminent demise from ice rather than fire. Newsweek warned that temperatures had already dropped ''a sixth of the way toward the Ice Age average.'' By 1985, Life declared, ``air pollution will have reduced the amount of sunlight reaching the earth by one half.''

A MAJOR COOLING WIDELY ACCEPTED TO BE INEVITABLE, agreed The New York Times, adding in an editorial: ''Man must stop pollution and conserve his resources, not merely to enhance existence but to save the race from intolerable deterioration and possible extinction.'' To be fair, this was nothing new at The Times. It had been predicting the world was on the verge of turning into a Popsicle since at least 1895 -- GEOLOGISTS THINK THE WORLD MAY BE FROZEN UP AGAIN, a headline said back then. Perhaps the editors figured that if they printed the story often enough, they were bound to get it right, if only because of the law of averages.

I sometimes find myself longing for the good old days of the Ice Age scare, because at least back then, dissent was possible. When Newsweek in 1975 proposed fighting off those inexorable glaciers by ''melting the arctic cap by covering it with black soot or diverting arctic rivers,'' it had the grace to concede that some scientists worried just a teensy bit that these solutions ``might create problems far greater than they resolve.''

These days, deviating from the orthodoxy on global warming -- not just questioning whether it exists, but how much of it is due to human activity, or if the results might be a little less ruinous than the Climate Cassandras predict -- is almost enough to get you thrown in jail. And I mean that literally. James Hansen, the former Gore science advisor who's been one of the foremost doomsayers on global warming, recently said that oil company executives who argue against him ``should be tried for high crimes against humanity and nature.''

Consider it a certainty that the Climate Police will lock up Penn & Teller after Thursday's show. Not only does it feature interviews with some scientists who aren't totally sold on the idea that the Earth is toast, it whispers an even more inconvenient truth: A lot of the scariest global-warming tales are told by people who stand to make a buck by scaring you.

At one end of the scale is a Santa Fe therapist who treats patients for what she calls ''eco-anxiety'' by giving them what she calls ''river rocks'' -- actually, it's gravel picked up from her driveway -- to remind them that ''you do come from Earth and you are connected.'' (The most scandalous thing about this ''treatment'' is that it works: ''Whenever I'm by a rock, holding it, I feel grounded,'' explains one grateful patient.)

At the other is Al Gore, who's made a post-political career out of warning that we're on the brink of ''epic destruction involving extreme weather, floods, droughts, epidemics and killer heat waves.'' A couple of years ago, Gore suffered some minor embarrassment when a Tennessee think-tank revealed that his 20-room Nashville mansion uses 17 times the electricity of the average American home. Unabashed, Gore explained that he was ''offsetting'' his electric gluttony by buying carbon credits -- that it, putting money into green projects, would save as much energy as his home wasted.

Looking a little more closely into it, Bull----! points out that Gore was actually purchasing those carbon credits from . . . himself. He did it by investing money in his own company Generation Investment Management, which buys stocks in companies that make green technology -- technology that Gore is constantly lobbying governments to adopt or mandate. ''So Al makes money when people buy carbon credits through his company,'' says a Gore critic. It's not only good to be green, but profitable, too.

I'm not surprised if you're surprised that Gore might have a financial interest in screaming about the end of the world. Reporters who fall asleep chanting the mantra follow the money have been heinously lax in practicing it on the global warming story.

Last November, when NBC insisted that every single program on the network that week would have a green theme, nobody seemed to notice that the network was in effect running a massive product-placement ad for its corporate parent General Electric. GE has invested massive amounts of money in solar panels, wind power and other so-called clean-energy technologies for which there will be virtually no consumer demand unless Congress passes laws requiring them.

But practically no reporters were interested in that story -- certainly not those at NBC News, which also participated in Green Week by inserting stories into its shows. When I asked network anchor Brian Williams if this wasn't corporate manipulation of his newscast, he shook his head vigorously. ''Not at all,'' he insisted. ''I've got no problems with it. It's not any different than The New York Times editorial board sitting down and saying the newspaper is going to do a series of stories on some particular subject.'' Maybe, if The New York Times were owned by, say, Halliburton, and the board of directors ordered up a series on, say, the need to invade Iraq. But I don't have time to argue about it right now. I'm pretty sure I hear the Climate Police at my door.

07-24-08, 05:02 PM
I like that one. See Post #181. ;)

Dang, I can't keep up on this thread! :lol:

07-24-08, 09:54 PM
Well, I was somewhat disappointed by the Penn & Teller show (I regretfully figured it was almost certain I would be since P&T are probably not as immersed in the subject as I am).

I was disappointed in three things where they touched on science:

The global cooling scare of the 70s was real but it was not nearly as widespread as the global warming scare today and I don't mean just the much higher level of publicity today. There were a lot fewer scientists pushing the global cooling scare.

I admire John Coleman but I think there are many much more knowledgeable people who use more temperate language and understand the nuances far better.

The "fact" that "we" only emit 3% of all CO2 (which I'm not entirely sure of) is pretty unimportant. The fact is that we are the difference in raising the level. I freely admit that is why the level has gone up from about 280 to 385 ppm over the last century. The point that should have been made is that that hasn't raised the temperature much and the next 105 ppm increase will raise the temperature much less than that first 105 ppm because of the logarithmic effect of adding CO2. Attributing much of the emitted CO2 to volcanoes is actually the same mistake The Great Global Warming Swindle made in its first showing and which was corrected for subsequent broadcasts and the DVD.
Most of the rest of the program dealing with carbon credits and Al Gore was fairly accurate and entertaining. The people giving money to the "carbon credit indulgences" woman were pretty funny.

I would like to have seen P&T talking to some of the top skeptical scientists (many to choose from) rather than Coleman. And by emphasizing the old global cooling scare and our percentage of the world's carbon emissions they opened themselves up to some criticism that would at least be somewhat deserved. There are literally dozens, if not hundreds of peer reviewed studies that conflict with catastrophic anthropogenic global warming (CAGW) and citing a few that are representative and fairly simple to relate to a lay audience would have gone much further in advancing CAGW skepticism than what they did.

07-24-08, 11:12 PM
During his testimony Sen. Barbara Boxer confronted Dr. Spencer by saying that he was made the official meteorologist of the Rush Limbaugh radio show. In response, Limbaugh has made Sen. Boxer the Official Clown of the Rush Limbaugh radio show.
Yes, I saw that. I probably agree and disagree with Rush about 50/50 but I find him entertaining and I think he's pretty good on environmentalism and global warming. What is most telling here is that Senator Boxer had no reply to Spencer's brilliant testimony and his science about which she obviously knows next to nothing. If snidely referring to his advising Rush's show is the best she can come up with (no doubt to her, conclusive proof of Spencer's perniciousness) and she thinks that has scored points with anyone but her choir, it's no wonder that Senator Inhofe, who has made himself extremely well informed and knowledgeable, cleans her clock every day on the EPW committee.

07-24-08, 11:38 PM
What's this about some carbon scrubbing machine that some professor invented but environmentalists are against because it won't change people's lifestyles? movielib, school me.

07-25-08, 05:54 AM
What's this about some carbon scrubbing machine that some professor invented but environmentalists are against because it won't change people's lifestyles? movielib, school me.

Could US scientist's 'CO2 catcher' help to slow warming?

* David Adam in New York
* The Guardian,
* Saturday May 31 2008
* Article history

carbon scrubber

It has long been the holy grail for those who believe that technology can save us from catastrophic climate change: a device that can "suck" carbon dioxide (CO2) from the air, reducing the warming effect of the billions of tonnes of greenhouse gas produced each year.

Now a group of US scientists say they have made a breakthrough towards creating such a machine. Led by Klaus Lackner, a physicist at Columbia University in New York, they plan to build and demonstrate a prototype within two years that could economically capture a tonne of CO2 a day from the air, about the same per passenger as a flight from London to New York.

The prototype so-called scrubber will be small enough to fit inside a shipping container. Lackner estimates it will initially cost around £100,000 to build, but the carbon cost of making each device would be "small potatoes" compared with the amount each would capture, he said.

The scientists stress their invention is not a magic bullet to solve climate change. It would take millions of the devices to soak up the world's carbon emissions, and the CO2 trapped would still need to be disposed of. But the team says the technology may be the best way to avert dangerous temperature rises, as fossil fuel use is predicted to increase sharply in coming decades despite international efforts. Climate experts at a monitoring station in Hawaii this month reported CO2 levels in the atmosphere have reached a record 387 parts per million (ppm) - 40% higher than before the industrial revolution.

The quest for a machine that could reverse the trend by "scrubbing" carbon from the air is seen as one of the greatest challenges in climate science. Richard Branson has promised $25m (£12.6m) to anyone who succeeds.

Lackner told the Guardian: "I wouldn't write across the front page that the problem is solved, but this will help. We are in a hurry to deal with climate change and will be very hard pressed to stop the train before we get to 450ppm [CO2 in the atmosphere]. This can help stop the train."

He added: "Our project has reached the stage where it is quite clear we can do it. We need to start dealing with all these emissions. I'd rather have a technology that allows us to use fossil fuels without destroying the planet, because people are going to use them anyway."

Scientists have been sceptical about air capture devices for carbon because of the large amounts of energy they consume. Although it is relatively easy to find chemicals that absorb CO2, it is harder to then strip the gas from the so-called sorbent for reuse. A detailed report on carbon capture from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change in 2005 effectively dismissed the air capture as unworkable.

Lackner's team says it has made a significant breakthrough that massively reduces the amount of energy required to recharge the sorbent. It is reluctant to discuss details, but a US patent application obtained by the Guardian shows that it is based on changes in humidity.

The team says it can trap the CO2 from air on absorbent plastic sheets called ion exchange membranes, commonly used to purify water. Crucially, it has discovered that humid air can then make the membranes "exhale" their trapped CO2. The discovery was "some serendipity and some working out," Lackner said. "When I saw it the first time, I didn't believe it."

The team is working to build a prototype at a laboratory in Tuscon, Arizona. Run by a company called Global Research Technologies (GRT), of which Lackner is vice president of research, the laboratory unveiled a "pre-prototype" air capture machine last year, based on a different technique -rinsing trapped CO2 off the membrane with liquid sodium carbonate, and then using electricity to liberate the CO2 from the fluid.

Lackner says that device works, but the "humidity switch" could slash the scrubber's energy use tenfold. He said: "We can do it coming out carbon positive."

The team is also working on ways to dispose of the pure CO2 gas produced by each scrubber.

The patent suggests the scrubber could be connected to greenhouses, where the CO2 would boost plant growth. Or the gas could be used to grow algae, for food, fertiliser or fuel. The latter could "close the carbon loop," Lackner said.

The discovery could make the team eligible for the $25m Virgin Earth Challenge, which has pledged the money to the inventor of a way to remove a billion tonnes of CO2 from the atmosphere each year, though Lackner said he had not contacted Branson.

Wallace Broecker, the distinguished environmental scientist at Columbia University who helped Lackner set up GRT, said the air scrubber could be only way to tackle climate change.

He said Lackner was "one of the smartest guys on the planet". Broecker introduced the late Gary Comer, a billionaire entrepreneur, to Lackner and Allen Wright, an engineer who runs GRT, helped by his brother Burt. Broecker said that the Wright brothers helped to cause this problem and "now the Wright brothers are going to fix it".
Link (http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2008/may/31/carbonemissions.climatechange)

Greenpeace USA's reply: There's no magic bullet to save us from the problem of global warming," said Kert Davies, an energy expert for Greenpeace USA in Washington, D.C. Removing greenhouse gases so readily will not encourage people to develop alternate, renewable technologies, he said, and strive for energy efficiency.

Such techno-fixes also miss the point of the environmental degradation brought on by the use of fossil fuels, he said.

Carbon scrubbers won't stop oil spills, habitat-destroying strip mining and ozone, he said. "It's like having cancer and putting a Band-Aid on it," he added.

Besides, Davies said, the devices, which will in principle be larger than the prototype, will be eyesores. "Can you imagine thousands of acres of giant fly swatters across the land?

1. That ripping noise was the goalposts moving down the field

2. Greenpeace is a huge proponent of windmills, so the "huge eyesore" complaint is a little hypocritical.

3. Kert Davies, with this comment, has removed any doubt that Greenpeace is nothing but a watermelon organization. They are neo-Luddites that won't be happy until they find a magic bullet that cripples the west.

07-25-08, 07:15 AM
Thanks for fielding this one, crazyronin. I admit I haven't paid much attention to the "fixes." I don't think anything yet is very close to being ready for prime time.

I don't think there's anything wrong with looking for "cures" although I don't think there's much that needs curing. But I've got no problem with these things as long as they evolve in a free market.

As for the enviros, as we know they will never be satisfied. A partial "cure" exists right now in nuclear energy and we know what they think of that.

07-25-08, 02:50 PM
The disappearing Arctic ice from the New York Times, February 20, 1969:



CO2 comes into it at the end of the article. Funny that there was, "until recently" (1969 recently), a suspicion that (I paraphrase) our CO2 emissions were making it warmer. Also interesting that Reid Bryson, thought of as the scientist most responsible for modern meteorology and climatology as we know it today and a CAGW skeptic is cited. Dr. Bryson died just a few months ago.

07-25-08, 03:05 PM
Thanks but no thanks, T. Boone Pickens.

Al Gore II: Windmill Boogaloo


Is T. Boone Pickens 'Swiftboating' America?
Thursday, July 24, 2008
By Steven Milloy

Liberals have done a U-turn on conservative billionaire oilman T. Boone Pickens.

Formerly reviled for funding the "Swift Boat Veterans for Truth" campaign against Sen. John Kerry, he's now adored by the Left — unfortunately, for trying to gaslight the rest of us on energy policy.

This column recently spotlighted Pickens' proposed plan to get America off foreign oil by substituting wind-generated electricity for natural gas-generated electricity and then using the natural gas to replace gasoline.

Already having addressed the proposal's flaws — and Pickens' plan to profit at taxpayer expense from it — let's consider how Pickens' marketing shades the truth.

On his Web site and in TV commercials, Pickens tries to frighten Americans about being "addicted to foreign oil."

"In 1970, we imported 24 percent of our oil. Today, it's nearly 70 percent and growing," he intones.

Aside from the fact that the Department of Energy (DOE) puts the import figure at a more moderate 58 percent, Pickens gives the impression that imported oil is scary because it all comes from the unstable Mideast.

His TV commercials feature images of American soldiers fighting in Iraq and he likens the annual $700 billion cost of foreign oil to "four times the annual cost of the Iraq war."

But hold the phone. Only 16 percent of our imported oil comes from the Persian Gulf — barely up from 13.6 percent in 1973, according to the DOE. Imports from OPEC countries are actually down — from 47.8 percent in 1973 to 44.5 percent in 2007.

Contrary to Pickens' assertion that oil imports are growing, the DOE expects oil imports to decrease by 10 percent by 2030.

Pickens tries to shame Americans because, "America uses a lot of oil ... That's 25 percent of the world's oil demand, used by just 4 percent of the world population."

Some might think these figures make us sound greedy and wasteful.

But what Pickens omitted to mention is that the size of the U.S. economy in 2007 was about $13.8 trillion and the size of the global economy was $54.3 trillion.

This means that the U.S. economy represents about 25.4 percent of the global economy. So what's the problem if a nation that produces 25 percent of the world's goods and services needs 25 percent of the world's oil output?

Would he prefer that we shrink our economy by 84 percent to match our share of world population?

Pickens plays the hope-squasher.

"Can't we just produce more oil?" he asks. "The simple truth is that cheap and easy oil is gone," he responds.

But there are hundreds of billions of barrels of oil in the form of oil tar sands and oil shale in North America, not to mention the more than one hundred billion barrels of oil in the outer continental shelf of the U.S. and on public lands like the Arctic National Wildlife Preserve (ANWR).

And don't forget that coal-to-liquids technology can convert our 268 billion tons of coal into 20 times the nation's current crude oil reserves, according to investment analysts. We have liquid fuels to burn.

While producing this oil may not be as easy as it was in 1859, when crude oil bubbled out of the ground in northwest Pennsylvania, it is much more feasible and far less expensive than Pickens' fantasy of replicating the entire existing U.S. wind supply system every year for the next 15 years in addition to building the national infrastructure for natural-gas filling stations.

Finally, Pickens laments the $700 billion (less at current oil prices) "wealth transfer" from America to foreigners every year because of our "addiction."

But is he also concerned about our "addiction" to other imports?

In 2007, the U.S. merchandise trade deficit — the difference between imports of goods from and exports of goods to foreign countries — exceeded $815 billion.

Contrary to Pickens' demagoguery, "wealth transfer" is a term generally used in the context of estate planning, where money is simply "gifted" to heirs.

Our purchases of foreign oil, in contrast, are more reasonably known as "trade" — and trade is good.

Americans are not simply petro-junkies who mainline crude oil for the masochistic high of watching gas pump numbers spin faster. We produce goods and services with imported oil more than any other people on this planet.

Pickens' bad-mouthing of our use of oil sounds like it comes from Al Gore and his fellow Democrats and extreme Greens — and guess who Pickens' new friends are?

Pickens told the National Journal that, "I think I would be for Al Gore for energy czar [in an Obama administration]."

Pickens said that he and Gore agree on about 95 percent of their respective energy plans.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi invited Pickens to speak before the Democratic Caucus.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid says that, while Pickens was once a "mortal enemy," they are now friends because of the oilman's conversion to alternative energy.

Then there's Carl Pope, the head of the Sierra Club, who not only flies in Pickens' private jet but writes paeans about him on the liberal Huffington Post blog.

"T. Boone Pickens is out to save America," Pope wrote on July 3.

It would have been more accurate, perhaps, for Pope to write that "Pickens is out to make billions of dollars for himself and to save the Sierra Club's anti-coal, anti-oil, anti-natural gas agenda."

Lastly, the New York Times rhapsodized about Pickens in an editorial this week.

Pickens' involvement in the alleged swiftboating of John Kerry seems to have been forgiven and forgotten by the paper. But the Times went absolutely over-the-top when it observed that the billionaire Pickens wasn't in it for the money because "he doesn't really need it."

It's too bad we can't generate electricity from such hilarity, half-truths and hypocrisy. Pickens and his new friends could power us — as Buzz Lightyear might say — to infinity and beyond.

07-25-08, 03:26 PM
No global warming in Anchorage this summer:


Gloomy summer headed toward infamy

CHILLY: Anchorage could hit 65 degrees for fewest days on record.
Published: July 24th, 2008 12:10 AM
Last Modified: July 24th, 2008 04:56 PM

The coldest summer ever? You might be looking at it, weather folks say.

Right now the so-called summer of '08 is on pace to produce the fewest days ever recorded in which the temperature in Anchorage managed to reach 65 degrees.

That unhappy record was set in 1970, when we only made it to the 65-degree mark, which many Alaskans consider a nice temperature, 16 days out of 365.

This year, however -- with the summer more than half over -- there have been only seven 65-degree days so far. And that's with just a month of potential "balmy" days remaining and the forecast looking gloomy.

National Weather Service meteorologist Sam Albanese, a storm warning coordinator for Alaska, says the outlook is for Anchorage to remain cool and cloudy through the rest of July.

"There's no real warm feature moving in," Albanese said. "And that's just been the pattern we've been stuck in for a couple weeks now."

In the Matanuska Valley on Wednesday snow dusted the Chugach. On the Kenai Peninsula, rain was raising Six-Mile River to flood levels and rafting trips had to be canceled.

So if the cold and drizzle are going to continue anyway, why not shoot for a record? The mark is well within reach, Albanese said:

"It's probably going to go down as the summer with the least number of 65-degree days."


In terms of "coldest summer ever," however, a better measure might be the number of days Anchorage fails to even reach 60.

There too, 2008 is a contender, having so far notched only 35 such days -- far below the summer-long average of 88.

Unless we get 10 more days of 60-degree or warmer temperatures, we're going to break the dismal 1971 record of only 46 such days, a possibility too awful to contemplate.

Still, according to a series of charts cobbled together Tuesday evening by a night-shift meteorologist in the weather service's Anchorage office, the current summer clearly has broken company with the record-setting warmth of recent years. Consider:

• 70-degree days. So far this summer there have been two. Usually there are 15. Last year there were 21. In 2004 there were 49.

• 75-degree days. So far this summer there've been zero. Usually there are four. It may be hard to remember, but last year there were 21. In 2004 there were 23.

So are all bets off on global warming? Hardly, scientists say. Climate change is a function of long-term trends, not single summers or individual hurricanes.

Last year the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change concluded that it's "unequivocal" the world is warming, considering how 11 of the warmest years on record have occurred in the past 13 years.

So what's going on in Alaska, which also posted a fairly frigid winter?


Federal meteorologists trace a lot of the cool weather to ocean temperatures in the South Pacific.

When the seas off the coast of Peru are 2 to 4 degrees cooler than normal, a La Nina weather pattern develops, which brings cooler-than- normal weather to Alaska.

For most of the past year, La Nina (the opposite of El Nino, in which warmer-than-normal ocean temperatures occur off Peru) has prevailed. But that's now beginning to change.

According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Web site, water temperatures in the eastern South Pacific began to warm this summer -- and the weather should eventually follow.

The current three-month outlook posted by the national Climate Prediction Center in Camp Springs, Md., calls for below-normal temperatures for the south coast of Alaska from August through October -- turning to above-normal temperatures from October through December.

Of course they have to get in that this doesn't mean global warming is over. And in this case, indeed it doesn't. But it's suggestive, especially because many places all over the Earth have experienced very cold weather in the last year. And why is La Nina blamed for the cooling when the 1998 El Nino was downplayed by the alarmists as a cause of that warm year? And why do they quote the IPCC that the world is "unequivocally" warming when it hasn't warmed for ten years and has been cooling for seven?

07-27-08, 08:34 PM
The Governator finally shows a teensy bit of sense when it comes to CAGW propaganda for children:


Governor vetoes climate change curriculum
By John Boudreau
Mercury News
Article Launched: 07/26/2008 09:57:45 PM PDT

California public students will stick to reading, writing and arithmetic, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger decided as he vetoed a bill late Friday that would have required climate change be added to schools' curriculum.

The measure, sponsored by state Sen. Joe Simitian, D-Palo Alto, also would have required future science textbooks to include climate change as a subject.

In January, the state Senate approved the bill, SB 908, by a 26-13 vote. Only two Republicans supported the proposal.

In his veto statement, Schwarzenegger said he supported education that spotlights the dangers of climate change. However, the Republican governor said he was opposed to educational mandates from Sacramento.

"I continue to believe that the state should refrain from being overly prescriptive in specific school curriculum, beyond establishing rigorous academic standards," he said.

Schwarzenegger added that the state's Integrated Waste Management Board's Office of Education and Environment, along with California's Environmental Protection Agency, are creating an environmental curriculum for K-12 students that includes climate change issues.

Simitian had said his bill wouldn't dictate what to teach; rather, it would require the state Board of Education and state Department of Education to decide how the topic would be covered and which grades would study it.

While global warming is included in high school classes as it pertains to weather, the subject is not required to be covered in all textbooks, according to the California Science Teachers Association.

07-27-08, 10:48 PM
This might be even worse than that Australian "game" that tells kids when they should die because they've used up their "quota" of CO2 emissions (see Post #6).


Sunday, July 27, 2008
Climate Nazis

Can I be the only one more than a little disturbed by the latest campaign to be fronted by energy company npower?

Launched today with large colour ads in the Sundays, it appeals directly to children, urging them to enlist as "climate cops", to root out "climate crimes", and thus "save the planet".

In a luridly-designed website, mimicking the style of "yoof" cartoons, it offers a bundle of downloads, including a pack of "climate crime cards", urging its recruits to spy on families, friends and relatives, inviting each of them to build up a "climate crime case file" in order to help them ensure their putative criminals do not "commit those crimes again (or else)!"

Quite what the "or else!" should be is not specified, but since the "climate cops" are being encouraged to keep detailed written records (for those who can read and write), there is nothing to stop these being submitted to the "Climate Cops HQ" for further sanctions, the repeat offenders being sent to re-education camps. And for those "climate cops" that successfully perform the "missions" set (or turn in their own parents), there is the reward of "training" in the "Climate Cop Academy".

In a system which has echoes of Hitler's Deutsches Jungvolk movement, and the Communist regime Pioneers, perhaps successful graduates can work up to becoming block wardens, then street and district "climate crime Führers", building a network of spies and informers.

How nicely this ties in with James Hansen's call to put the chief executives of large fossil fuel companies on trial for high crimes against humanity and nature, accusing them of actively spreading doubt about global warming.

No doubt, with a willing band of "climate cops", the prosecutors can spread their nets wider, reaching into the homes of all climate change deniers, until the insidious virus of doubt is exterminated (final solution, anyone?). Then we can all march on the sunlit uplands of a "carbon-free" planet – to the tune of Ode to Joy no doubt.


As loath as I am to making Nazi parallels, and while this is probably not the way I would have characterized it, it doesn't seem to be all that inapt in this case.

Go here to check this out. Absolutely unbelievable.


07-28-08, 09:12 AM
This might be even worse than that Australian "game" that tells kids when they should die because they've used up their "quota" of CO2 emissions (see Post #6).


As loath as I am to making Nazi parallels, and while this is probably not the way I would have characterized it, it doesn't seem to be all that inapt in this case.

Go here to check this out. Absolutely unbelievable.


I'm proud to say I'm guilty of #'s 1, 2, 5, and 7 all the time, and the others sometimes. :thumbsup: Whenever I see something like this (so basically whenever the news is on or I wander into this thread), I turn on an extra light, turn the AC down a degree or two, rev my engine a little more, etc. -ohbfrank-

You know, if they wouldn't make the 'saving energy = saving the environment' assumption, I would be more receptive. If somebody wants to save money on their utility bills, I would imagine these things would help, but they barely ever mention that. If these whack jobs wanted to really get people to change, they'd show them how to save money, not the environment.

I like the front page of that site - they have the always powerful polar bear (but he's got a smile on his face, what gives? I thought they were all miserable and dying? Probably just happy these kids saved his life?), plus they have a 'Teacher's Zone.' Nothing screams "we don't know what the F we're talking about" quite like present day teachers of 7 to 11 year olds. :lol:

07-28-08, 09:33 AM
You know, if they wouldn't make the 'saving energy = saving the environment' assumption, I would be more receptive. If somebody wants to save money on their utility bills, I would imagine these things would help, but they barely ever mention that. If these whack jobs wanted to really get people to change, they'd show them how to save money, not the environment.

I agree. I am really good about all of these except numbers 5 and 6. Why? Because they save me money. Are they really suggesting leaving food out until it gets to room temperature? I hope that there's no egg salad on that plate ...

07-28-08, 09:56 AM
I agree. I am really good about all of these except numbers 5 and 6. Why? Because they save me money. Are they really suggesting leaving food out until it gets to room temperature? I hope that there's no egg salad on that plate ...
Right, "enforcing" Climate Crime #6 would probably lead to an xx% increase in spoilage and food sicknesses that would be far worse than the "crime." And how often would somebody's waiting be forgotten about for hours so the food is that much closer to spoiling when it is finally put back or they simply have to throw it out?

And conversely, shouldn't you wait until anything you take out of the refrigerator or freezer be allowed to attain room temperature before you cook it? That way you would use less energy in heating it.

Do these people even think about what they are saying before they try to stuff the minds of impressionable children?

07-30-08, 10:53 AM

Bangladesh gaining land, not losing: scientists

by Shafiq Alam 2 hours, 4 minutes ago

DHAKA (AFP) - New data shows that Bangladesh's landmass is increasing, contradicting forecasts that the South Asian nation will be under the waves by the end of the century, experts say.

Scientists from the Dhaka-based Center for Environment and Geographic Information Services (CEGIS) have studied 32 years of satellite images and say Bangladesh's landmass has increased by 20 square kilometres (eight square miles) annually.

Maminul Haque Sarker, head of the department at the government-owned centre that looks at boundary changes, told AFP sediment which travelled down the big Himalayan rivers -- the Ganges and the Brahmaputra -- had caused the landmass to increase.

The rivers, which meet in the centre of Bangladesh, carry more than a billion tonnes of sediment every year and most of it comes to rest on the southern coastline of the country in the Bay of Bengal where new territory is forming, he said in an interview on Tuesday.

The United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has predicted that impoverished Bangladesh, criss-crossed by a network of more than 200 rivers, will lose 17 percent of its land by 2050 because of rising sea levels due to global warming.

The Nobel Peace Prize-winning panel says 20 million Bangladeshis will become environmental refugees by 2050 and the country will lose some 30 percent of its food production.

Director of the US-based NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies, professor James Hansen, paints an even grimmer picture, predicting the entire country could be under water by the end of the century.

But Sarker said that while rising sea levels and river erosion were both claiming land in Bangladesh, many climate experts had failed to take into account new land being formed from the river sediment.

"Satellite images dating back to 1973 and old maps earlier than that show some 1,000 square kilometres of land have risen from the sea," Sarker said.

"A rise in sea level will offset this and slow the gains made by new territories, but there will still be an increase in land. We think that in the next 50 years we may get another 1,000 square kilometres of land."

Mahfuzur Rahman, head of Bangladesh Water Development Board's Coastal Study and Survey Department, has also been analysing the buildup of land on the coast.

He told AFP findings by the IPCC and other climate change scientists were too general and did not explore the benefits of land accretion.

"For almost a decade we have heard experts saying Bangladesh will be under water, but so far our data has shown nothing like this," he said.

"Natural accretion has been going on here for hundreds of years along the estuaries and all our models show it will go on for decades or centuries into the future."

Dams built along the country's southern coast in the 1950s and 1960s had helped reclaim a lot of land and he believed with the use of new technology, Bangladesh could speed up the accretion process, he said.

"The land Bangladesh has lost so far has been caused by river erosion, which has always happened in this country. Natural accretion due to sedimentation and dams have more than compensated this loss," Rahman said.

Bangladesh, a country of 140 million people, has built a series of dykes to prevent flooding.

"If we build more dams using superior technology, we may be able to reclaim 4,000 to 5,000 square kilometres in the near future," Rahman said.

07-30-08, 02:59 PM
Good find. I have been working today without a break and hadn't seen it.

The utter absurdity of the "underwater" claims of the likes of Al Gore, James Hansen and the IPCC has been evident to anyone with a brain. Of course that hasn't stopped the scaremongers one little bit. And don't expect anything to change now either. I see a grand total of 15 links to the story on Google News, not a single one of them in the US, by the way. You know that if the Bangladesh scientists were claiming they are going under water, there would be hundreds of links within hours.

There is one thing that makes me very happy. It's that Bangladesh scientists are debunking this rather than trying to use the silly scares as a way to try to shake down the West for causing damage to them with our "CO2 pollution" (such as Tuvalu and (some) Inuits).

07-30-08, 03:20 PM
Greenland is not - I repeat, not melting.


Jul 30, 2008
Greenland Again

By Joseph D’Aleo, CCM, AMS Fellow

The New York Times Magazine published a story “Ice Free” by Stephan Faris, hawking his new book “Forecast: The Consequences of Climate Change, From the Amazon to the Arctic, From Darfur to Napa Valley”, to be published in January.

In the article, Faris notes “Greenland’s ice sheet represents one of global warming’s most disturbing threats. The vast expanses of glaciers- massed, on average, 1.6 miles deep - contain enough water to raise sea levels worldwide by 23 feet. Should they melt or otherwise slip into the ocean, they would flood coastal capitals, submerge tropical islands and generally redraw the world’s atlases. The infusion of fresh water could slow or shut down the ocean’s currents, plunging Europe into bitter winter.”

There is little recognition in the media and by the author of history. Greenland actually was warmer in the 1930s and 1940s than it has been in recent decades. For the period from the 1960s to the 1990s, temperatures actually declined significantly as the Atlantic went through its multidecadal cold mode. The temperature changes up and down the last few centuries were closely related to these multidecadal ocean cycles.

Shown below is the temperature plot for Godthab Nuuk in southwest Greenland. Note how closely the temperatures track with the AMO (which is a measure of the Atlantic temperatures 0 to 70N). It shows that cooling from the 1940s to the late 1990s even as greenhouse gases rose steadily, a negative correlation over almost 5 decades. The rise after the middle 1990s was due to the flip of the AMO into its warm phase. They have not reached the level of the 1930s and 1940s.


Temperatures cooled back to the levels of the 1880s by the 1980s and 1990s. In a GRL paper in 2003, Hanna and Cappelen showed a significant cooling trend for eight stations in coastal southern Greenland from 1958 to 2001 (-1.29�C for the 44 years). The temperature trend represented a strong negative correlation with increasing CO2 levels.

Many recent studies have addressed Greenland ice mass balance. They yield a broad picture of slight inland thickening and strong near-coastal thinning, primarily in the south along fast-moving outlet glaciers. However, interannual variability is very large, driven mainly by variability in summer melting and sudden glacier accelerations. Consequently, the short time interval covered by instrumental data is of concern in separating fluctuations from trends. But in a paper published in Science in February 2007, Dr. Ian Howat of the University of Washington reports that two of the largest glaciers have suddenly slowed, bringing the rate of melting last year down to near the previous rate. At one glacier, Kangerdlugssuaq, “average thinning over the glacier during the summer of 2006 declined to near zero, with some apparent thickening in areas on the main trunk.”

Dr. Howat in a follow-up interview with the New York Times went on to add:
“Greenland was about as warm or warmer in the 1930’s and 40’s, and many of the glaciers were smaller than they are now. This was a period of rapid glacier shrinkage world-wide, followed by at least partial re-expansion during a colder period from the 1950’s to the 1980’s. Of course, we don’t know very much about how the glacier dynamics changed then because we didn’t have satellites to observe it. However, it does suggest that large variations in ice sheet dynamics can occur from natural climate variability.”

07-30-08, 06:11 PM
Wanna sweat? Work for the UN.


U.N. raises own thermostat 5 degrees
Secretary-general forces 4,500 staffers to sweat it out for global warming
Posted: July 30, 2008
5:59 pm Eastern

The United Nations has decided to save the world from global warming by increasing the temperature in its headquarters by 5 degrees – from a cool 72 to a sweltering 77.

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon plans to save energy, cut CO2 emissions and alleviate climate change with his new "In-House Climate Change Initiative," the Washington Times reports. The plan calls for a month-long experiment called "Cool U.N." that will permit testing of energy use and utility expenses in the outdated U.N. headquarters in New York.

The idea could elicit a heated response from 4,500 staff members who work between 39 stories of glass walls – in a building that receives full sun on the East River.

"It will be like Addis Ababa," one staff member who appreciates air conditioning told the Times. "The air conditioning didn't work too well there, either."

Former U.N. ambassador Anwarul Chowdhury called the "Cool U.N." plan "tokenism." He said the extra warmth might help diplomats have empathy for less fortunate parts of the world.

"Some of us grow up in a natural environment," Chowdhury said of his humid home in Bangladesh. "We do not have the benefits of air conditioning. It is important to understand the realities of living in various parts of the world."

Ki-moon is telling diplomats to wear national garments so they will feel more comfortable, and he says he will do the same. Suit jackets and ties will be optional, the secretary-general's office said.

"Look for a cool, calm, casual S.G.," said an e-mail from his office.

The headquarters' air conditioning will be turned off on weekends, which could mean staffers can expect steamy Mondays in the hot month of August. Ban Ki-moon's office said the secretary-general is doing his best to mobilize action on climate change – starting Friday, of course.
According to this (http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/25936008/) story, the UN is thinking about making it 5ºF colder in the winter. I wonder what the trade-off will be between saving energy and "the planet" and turnover and other problems of a very uncomfortable staff. But then, enviros never think about the downside of their schemes.

07-30-08, 06:20 PM


Group to fight polar bear's ''threatened'' status
JEANNETTE J. LEE, Associated Press Writer
July 30, 2008 4:03 PM

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) - A conservative legal advocacy group said Wednesday it plans to sue the federal government over its recent decision to list the polar bear as a threatened species.

The group, the Pacific Legal Foundation, contends that the listing paves the way for lawsuits against any industry responsible for large-scale carbon emissions that could be connected to the steady warming of the bear's Arctic habitat.

''It allows activists to file lawsuits more easily based on claims that industrial activity will harm the species,'' Reed Hopper, lead attorney in the case, said from the group's office in Sacramento, Calif. ''Clearly, efforts need to be made to protect species, but the methods under which that is done shouldn't put species before people.''

One of his clients, the California Cattlemen's Association, is a major source of greenhouse gas emissions. Another, the California Forestry Association, could also attract environmental lawsuits, he says, because harvesting and burning trees contributes to global warming.

Pacific Legal said it also intends to show that protecting the polar bear will hurt poor people and minorities, who will be represented in the lawsuit by the Congress of Racial Equality.

Hopper couldn't point to any specific studies or articles showing such a cause-and-effect relationship, saying only that the poor are ''disproportionately affected'' by environmental regulation.

''When we file suit, we'll have to provide more information on the impact of the polar bear listing on the clients,'' Hopper said. ''We're going to need to establish the link between our claim and the actual impacts.''

Although their grounds for opposition differ somewhat, Pacific Legal hopes to team up with the state of Alaska to fight the listing, which was announced in mid-May by Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne.

The state has already announced it would battle the listing in court. Gov. Sarah Palin and other elected officials fear federal protection will hinder oil and gas development in polar bear habitat off the state's northern and northwestern coasts.

''One of reason we felt we needed to be involved in this suit is because the Alaska suit does not cover all the objections,'' Hopper said.

Kempthorne had cited conclusions by department scientists that sea ice loss will likely result in two-thirds of the polar bears disappearing by mid-century. The bear population across the Arctic from Alaska to Greenland doubled from about 12,000 to 25,000 since 1960, but he noted that scientists now predict a significant population decline.

Kempthorne said melting sea ice poses the greatest threat to polar bears.

In a letter last week to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Pacific Legal argued that the government estimates are mere ''speculation'' and not based on sound data.

07-30-08, 06:43 PM
Good find.


07-30-08, 08:11 PM
Wanna sweat? Work for the UN.


According to this (http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/25936008/) story, the UN is thinking about making it 5ºF colder in the winter. I wonder what the trade-off will be between saving energy and "the planet" and turnover and other problems of a very uncomfortable staff. But then, enviros never think about the downside of their schemes.

To be honest, it is dishonest to describe 77 °F (25 °C) as sweltering, as the author did. Especially if humidity is controlled too by a/c, it is really quite comfortable. Many private enterprises have done this for years (or 75 °F). It is quite adequate with a short sleeve shirt and no jacket. You can still wear a tie at that temperature.

In winter, it makes sense to expect people to wear a jacket or sweater, and drop the temperature to 68 °F (20 °C) or a little lower.

Edit: I can't find anything (free) direct from ASHRAE, but these guys quote from Standard 55:
(sorry, table format copies poorly)
ASHRAE Standard 55-1992 Thermal Environmental Conditions for Human Occupancy, recommends the following acceptable temperature ranges at relative humidity (RH) of 50% and air speed less than 0.15 m/sec. (30 fpm).

Table 1
Acceptable Temperatures


Winter Heavy slacks, long sleeve shirt and/or sweater 20-23.5°C

Summer Light slacks and short sleeveshirt 23-26°C

Some guidelines cited in this document refer to standards promulgated by the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-conditioning Engineers Inc. (ASHRAE). These are found in the ASHRAE documents Ventilation for Acceptable Indoor Air Quality (ASHRAE 62-2001) and Thermal Environmental Conditions for Human Occupancy (ASHRAE 55-2004). IDPH adopts these two documents as the basis for guidelines set forth in this document. If the ASHRAE guidelines are changed, IDPH will review the changes and amend this document accordingly.

{Again the table won't copy. See link. OldDude summary:
Winter 68-75 °F
Summer 73-79 °F
30-60% RH
<1000 ppm CO2
<9 ppm CO
other pollutants per OSHA, EPA }

07-30-08, 09:19 PM
To be honest, it is dishonest to describe 77 °F (25 °C) as sweltering, as the author did. Especially if humidity is controlled too by a/c, it is really quite comfortable. Many private enterprises have done this for years (or 75 °F). It is quite adequate with a short sleeve shirt and no jacket. You can still wear a tie at that temperature.

In winter, it makes sense to expect people to wear a jacket or sweater, and drop the temperature to 68 °F (20 °C) or a little lower.

Edit: I can't find anything (free) direct from ASHRAE, but these guys quote from Standard 55:
(sorry, table format copies poorly)

Yeah, I agree it's not that bad. But I do think 77 is a little high. I would definitely be uncomfortable working there. We keep it at around 73-74 at home and at work. In the winter, I think 67-68 is OK but I assume the UN idea is probably more like 63-64.

I do think a lot of people would be rather unhappy at the UN proposed temperatures. But maybe I'm picky.

07-30-08, 09:29 PM
Yeah, I agree it's not that bad. But I do think 77 is a little high. I would definitely be uncomfortable working there. We keep it at around 73-74 at home and at work. In the winter, I think 67-68 is OK but I assume the UN idea is probably more like 63-64.

I do think a lot of people would be rather unhappy at the UN proposed temperatures. But maybe I'm picky.

The latest ASHRAE Std 55 (2004) recommends even wider limits 67-82 °F depending on clothing and humidity control. I can't get the whole spec free, but the basics are given as graphs in this article.

Basically, they describe different bands for summer and winter dress (for which they have standards, 1.0 Clo for winter, 0.5 Clo for summer), and show the effect of humidity control.

Also, the UN is hardly unique. I could give links to numerous facilities using policies that at least get close to the extreme summer and winter guidelines of Std 55 to minimize their energy bills. And those policies certainly use the cred. of ASHRAE to say "quit your whining and enjoy it." My company did it a decade or more ago.
Certainly relaxing the dress code is part of making it (somewhat) acceptable.

Edit: They have definitely widened these limits. I'll read the graphs as well as I can and give a summary. They assume heated/cooled space (they have other standards for naturally ventilated), office work, seasonal clothing. They recommend a max humidity of 65% RH or 12 g/kg of water to dry air (max summer temp/humidity is at 55% RH) whichever is less.

(sorry, but the Celsius graph is more readable)
Summer: 23.5 °C @65% RH - 27 °C @ 55% RH
24.5 °C - 28 °C at 30% RH
25 °C - 29 °C at 0% RH (probably not possible)

Winter: 19.5 °C - 24 °C at 65% RH
20 °C - 25 °C at 30% RH
21 °C - 26 °C at 0% RH

Obviously a building minimizes its energy costs by aiming at max. summer, min. winter, and "floating" between these limits in spring and fall. The old UN temperature of 72 °F (22.2 °C) is actually below the summer minimum recommended by ASHRAE.

20 °C - 22 °C in winter and 25 °C - 27 °C in summer would seem like pretty prudent building policies to me, and protests could be minimized by explaining policy, cost, encouraging people to dress for the conditions and reviewing dress code for needed changes. Oh, snap, the UN did that. :lol:

07-31-08, 08:29 AM

07-31-08, 08:31 AM

Ted (Kennedy) ain't gonna' let that picture happen, not near his house! {Google Cape Wind Associates}

Edit: I'm not a huge proponent of wind power, but as a former sailboater, I have to say:

Windmills and sailboats may spill wind when it is too strong, but that's not nearly as messy as spilling oil, diesel, or gasoline. :)

07-31-08, 09:30 AM

Al Gore Places Infant Son In Rocket To Escape Dying Planet
July 30, 2008 | Issue 44•31

Young Gore sets out for his new home, where the sky is clear, the water is clean, and there are no Republicans.

EARTH—Former vice president Al Gore—who for the past three decades has unsuccessfully attempted to warn humanity of the coming destruction of our planet, only to be mocked and derided by the very people he has tried to save—launched his infant son into space Monday in the faint hope that his only child would reach the safety of another world.

"I tried to warn them, but the Elders of this planet would not listen," said Gore, who in 2000 was nearly banished to a featureless realm of nonexistence for promoting his unpopular message. "They called me foolish and laughed at my predictions. Yet even now, the Midwest is flooded, the ice caps are melting, and the cities are rocked with tremors, just as I foretold. Fools! Why didn't they heed me before it was too late?"

Al Gore—or, as he is known in his own language, Gore-Al—placed his son, Kal-Al, gently in the one-passenger rocket ship, his brow furrowed by the great weight he carried in preserving the sole survivor of humanity's hubristic folly.

"There is nothing left now but to ensure that my infant son does not meet the same fate as the rest of my doomed race," Gore said. "I will send him to a new planet, where he will, I hope, be raised by simple but kindly country folk and grow up to be a hero and protector to his adopted home."

As the rocket soared through the Gore estate's retractable solar-paneled roof—installed three years ago to save energy and provide emergency rocket-launch capability in the event that Gore's campaign to save Earth was unsuccessful—the onetime presidential candidate and his wife, Tipper, stood arm-in-arm, nobly facing their end while gazing up in stoic dignity at the receding rocket, the ecosystem already beginning to collapse around them.

In the final moments before the Earth's destruction, Gore expressed hope that his son would one day grow up to carry on his mission by fighting for truth, justice, and the American way elsewhere in the universe, using his Earth-given superpowers to become a champion of the downtrodden and a reducer of carbon emissions across the galaxy.

"Perhaps he will succeed where I have failed," Gore said.

Despite the child's humble beginnings, experts predict the intergalactic journey may have some extraordinary effects on Kal-Al's physique, eyesight, and, potentially, his powers of quiet, sensible persuasion.

"On his new planet, Kal-Al's Earth physiology will react to the radiation of a differently colored sun, causing him to develop abilities far beyond those of mortal men," political analyst Sig Schuster said. "He will be faster than a speeding Prius, stronger than the existing Superfund program, and able to leap mountains of red tape in a single bound. These superpowers will sustain him in his never-ending battle against conservatives, wealthy industrialists, and other environmental supervillains."

Although Gore and his wife voiced regrets that they could not accompany their son on his journey, they tried their best to equip Kal-Al for life on his new planet, providing the infant with a Keynote slide-show presentation of all human knowledge, a self-growing crystal fortress from which to monitor glacier shrinkage, and a copy of Al Gore's 1992 bestseller, Earth In The Balance.

The baby was also wrapped in a blanket emblazoned with the Gore family crest, which, because it is made of Earth materials, will be invulnerable on the new planet. It is hoped that one day it will be fashioned into a colorful costume for the boy to wear while fighting wrongdoers.

"In brightly hued tights, it will be harder for people there to ignore him when he takes on his new planet's lobbyists, auto manufacturers, and enemies of justice," Schuster said. "A bold and eye-catching unitard will give Kal-Al, last son of Earth, a formidable tool for protecting his new planet, a power more awesome than any his father could have dreamed of: the power of charisma."

07-31-08, 09:58 AM

More ice than expected in parts of the Arctic


New data from the Norwegian Meteorological Institute shows that there is more ice than normal in the Arctic waters north of the Svalbard archipelago.

In most years, there are open waters in the area north of the archipelago in July month. Studies from this year however show that the area is covered by ice, the Meteorological Institute writes in a press release.

In mid-July, the research vessel Lance and the Swedish shp MV Stockholm got stuck in ice in the area and needed help from the Norwegian Coast Guard to get loose.

The ice findings from the area spurred surprise among the researchers, many of whom expect the very North Pole to be ice-free by September this year.

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