Frozen in Time
Jun 03, 2018
A brief history of climate panic and crisis… both warming and cooling

Anthony Watts

From But Now You Know. There is most certainly a pattern to climate change...but it’s not what you may think:

For at least 114 120 years, climate “scientists” have been claiming that the climate was going to kill us...but they have kept switching whether it was a coming ice age, or global warming.

(A timeline of claims follows, updated to 2014)

1895 - Geologists Think the World May Be Frozen Up Again - New York Times, February 1895

1902 - “Disappearing Glaciers...deteriorating slowly, with a persistency that means their final annihilation...scientific fact...surely disappearing.” - Los Angeles Times

1912 - Prof. Schmidt Warns Us of an Encroaching Ice Age - New York Times, October 1912

1923 - “Scientist says Arctic ice will wipe out Canada: - Professor Gregory of Yale University, American representative to the Pan-Pacific Science Congress, - Chicago Tribune

1923 - “The discoveries of changes in the sun’s heat and the southward advance of glaciers in recent years have given rise to conjectures of the possible advent of a new ice age"- Washington Post

1924 - MacMillan Reports Signs of New Ice Age - New York Times, Sept 18, 1924

1929 - “Most geologists think the world is growing warmer, and that it will continue to get warmer” - Los Angeles Times, in Is another ice age coming?

1932 - “If these things be true, it is evident, therefore that we must be just teetering on an ice age” - The Atlantic magazine, This Cold, Cold World

1933 - America in Longest Warm Spell Since 1776; Temperature Line Records a 25-Year Rise - New York Times, March 27th, 1933

1933 - “...wide-spread and persistent tendency toward warmer weather...Is our climate changing?” - Federal Weather Bureau “Monthly Weather Review.”

1938 - Global warming, caused by man heating the planet with carbon dioxide, “is likely to prove beneficial to mankind in several ways, besides the provision of heat and power.” - Quarterly Journal of the Royal Meteorological Society

1938 - “Experts puzzle over 20 year mercury rise...Chicago is in the front rank of thousands of cities throughout the world which have been affected by a mysterious trend toward warmer climate in the last two decades” - Chicago Tribune

1939 - “Gaffers who claim that winters were harder when they were boys are quite right...weather men have no doubt that the world at least for the time being is growing warmer” - Washington Post

1952 - “...we have learned that the world has been getting warmer in the last half century” - New York Times, August 10th, 1962

1954 - “winters are getting milder, summers drier. Glaciers are receding, deserts growing” - U.S. News and World Report

1954 - Climate - the Heat May Be Off - Fortune Magazine

1959 - “Arctic Findings in Particular Support Theory of Rising Global Temperatures” - New York Times

1969 - “...the Arctic pack ice is thinning and that the ocean at the North Pole may become an open sea within a decade or two” - New York Times, February 20th, 1969

1969 - “If I were a gambler, I would take even money that England will not exist in the year 2000” - Paul Ehrlich (while he now predicts doom from global warming, this quote only gets honorable mention, as he was talking about his crazy fear of overpopulation)

1970 - “...get a good grip on your long johns, cold weather haters - the worst may be yet to come...there’s no relief in sigh” - Washington Post

1974 - Global cooling for the past forty years - Time Magazine

1974 - “Climatological Cassandras are becoming increasingly apprehensive, for the weather aberrations they are studying may be the harbinger of another ice age” - Washington Post

1974 - “As for the present cooling trend a number of leading climatologists have concluded that it is very bad news indeed” - Fortune magazine, who won a Science Writing Award from the American Institute of Physics for its analysis of the danger

1974 - “...the facts of the present climate change are such that the most optimistic experts would assign near certainty to major crop failure...mass deaths by starvation, and probably anarchy and violence” - New York Times

Cassandras are becoming increasingly apprehensive, for the weather aberrations they are studying may be the harbinger of another ice age

1975 - Scientists Ponder Why World’s Climate is Changing; A Major Cooling Widely Considered to Be Inevitable - New York Times, May 21st, 1975

1975 - “The threat of a new ice age must now stand alongside nuclear war as a likely source of wholesale death and misery for mankind” Nigel Calder, editor, New Scientist magazine, in an article in International Wildlife Magazine

1976 - “Even U.S. farms may be hit by cooling trend” - U.S. News and World Report

1981 - Global Warming - “of an almost unprecedented magnitude” - New York Times

1988 - I would like to draw three main conclusions. 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. And number three, our computer climate simulations indicate that the greenhouse effect is already large enough to begin to effect the probability of extreme events such as summer heat waves. - Jim Hansen, June 1988 testimony before Congress, see His later quote and His superior’s objection for context

1989 - “On the one hand, as scientists we are ethically bound to the scientific method, in effect promising to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but which means that we must include all doubts, the caveats, the ifs, ands and buts. On the other hand, we are not just scientists but human beings as well. And like most people we’d like to see the world a better place, which in this context translates into our working to reduce the risk of potentially disastrous climate change. To do that we need to get some broad based support, to capture the public’s imagination. That, of course, means getting loads of media coverage. So we have to offer up scary scenarios, make simplified, dramatic statements, and make little mention of any doubts we might have. This “double ethical bind” we frequently find ourselves in cannot be solved by any formula. Each of us has to decide what the right balance is between being effective and being honest. I hope that means being both.” - Stephen Schneider, lead author of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Discover magazine, October 1989

1990 - “We’ve got to ride the global warming issue. Even if the theory of global warming is wrong, we will be doing the right thing - in terms of economic policy and environmental policy” - Senator Timothy Wirth

1993 - “Global climate change may alter temperature and rainfall patterns, many scientists fear, with uncertain consequences for agriculture.” - U.S. News and World Report

1998 - No matter if the science [of global warming] is all phony ...climate change [provides] the greatest opportunity to bring about justice and equality in the world.” - Christine Stewart, Canadian Minister of the Environment, Calgary Herald, 1998

2001 - “Scientists no longer doubt that global warming is happening, and almost nobody questions the fact that humans are at least partly responsible.” - Time Magazine, Monday, Apr. 09, 2001

2003 - Emphasis on extreme scenarios may have been appropriate at one time, when the public and decision-makers were relatively unaware of the global warming issue, and energy sources such as “synfuels,” shale oil and tar sands were receiving strong consideration” - Jim Hansen, NASA Global Warming activist, Can we defuse The Global Warming Time Bomb?, 2003

2006 - “I believe it is appropriate to have an over-representation of factual presentations on how dangerous it is, as a predicate for opening up the audience to listen to what the solutions are, and how hopeful it is that we are going to solve this crisis.” - Al Gore, Grist magazine, May 2006

2006 - “It is not a debate over whether the earth has been warming over the past century. The earth is always warming or cooling, at least a few tenths of a degree...” - Richard S. Lindzen, the Alfred P. Sloan professor of meteorology at MIT

2006 - “What we have fundamentally forgotten is simple primary school science. Climate always changes. It is always...warming or cooling, it’s never stable. And if it were stable, it would actually be interesting scientifically because it would be the first time for four and a half billion years.” -Philip Stott, emeritus professor of bio-geography at the University of London

2006 - “Since 1895, the media has alternated between global cooling and warming scares during four separate and sometimes overlapping time periods. From 1895 until the 1930’s the media peddled a coming ice age. From the late 1920’s until the 1960’s they warned of global warming. From the 1950’s until the 1970’s they warned us again of a coming ice age. This makes modern global warming the fourth estate’s fourth attempt to promote opposing climate change fears during the last 100 years.” - Senator James Inhofe, Monday, September 25, 2006

2007 - “I gave a talk recently (on fallacies of global warming) and three members of the Canadian government, the environmental cabinet, came up afterwards and said, ‘We agree with you, but it’s not worth our jobs to say anything.’ So what’s being created is a huge industry with billions of dollars of government money and people’s jobs dependent on it.” - Dr. Tim Ball, Coast-to-Coast, Feb 6, 2007

2008 - “Hansen was never muzzled even though he violated NASA’s official agency position on climate forecasting (i.e., we did not know enough to forecast climate change or mankind’s effect on it). Hansen thus embarrassed NASA by coming out with his claims of global warming in 1988 in his testimony before Congress” - Dr. John S. Theon, retired Chief of the Climate Processes Research Program at NASA, see above for Hansen quotes

Section updated by Anthony Watts:

2009 - Climate change: melting ice will trigger wave of natural disasters. Scientists at a London conference next week will warn of earthquakes, avalanches and volcanic eruptions as the atmosphere heats up and geology is altered. Even Britain could face being struck by tsunamis - “Not only are the oceans and atmosphere conspiring against us, bringing baking temperatures, more powerful storms and floods, but the crust beneath our feet seems likely to join in too,” - Professor Bill McGuire, director of the Benfield Hazard Research Centre, at University College London, - The Guardian, Sep 2009.

2010 - What Global Warming Looks Like. It was more than 5C (about 10F) warmer than climatology in the eastern European region including Moscow. There was an area in eastern Asia that was similarly unusually hot. The eastern part of the United States was unusually warm, although not to the degree of the hot spots in Eurasia. James Hansen - NASA GISS, August 11, 2010.

2011 - Where Did Global Warming Go?  “In Washington, ‘climate change’ has become a lightning rod, it’s a four-letter word,” said Andrew J. Hoffman, director of the University of Michigan’s Erb Institute for Sustainable Development.  - New York Times, Oct 15, 2011.

2012 - Global warming close to becoming irreversible-scientists. “This is the critical decade. If we don’t get the curves turned around this decade we will cross those lines,” said Will Steffen, executive director of the Australian National University’s climate change institute, speaking at a conference in London. Reuters, Mar 26, 2012

2013 - Global-warming ‘proof’ is evaporating.  The 2013 hurricane season just ended as one of the five quietest years since 1960. But don’t expect anyone who pointed to last year’s hurricanes as “proof” of the need to act against global warming to apologize; the warmists don’t work that way. New York Post, Dec 5, 2013

2014 - Climate change: It’s even worse than we thought.  Five years ago, the last report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change painted a gloomy picture of our planet’s future. As climate scientists gather evidence for the next report, due in 2014, Michael Le Page gives seven reasons why things are looking even grimmer. - New Scientist (undated in 2014)

The actual Global Warming Advocates’ chart, overlaid on the “climate change” hysterics of the past 120 years. Not only is it clear that they take any change and claim it’s going to go on forever and kill everyone, but notice that they even sometimes get the short-term trend wrong…

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climate-claims.’.;.

Worse still, notice that in 1933 they claim global warming has been going on for 25 years...the entire 25 years they were saying we were entering an ice age. And in 1974, they say there has been global cooling for 40 years...the entire time of which they’d been claiming the earth was getting hotter! Of course NOW they are talking about the earth “warming for the past century”, again ignoring that they spent much of that century claiming we were entering an ice age.

The fact is that the mean temperature of the planet is, and should be, always wavering up or down, a bit, because this is a natural world, not a climate-controlled office.

See also:

150 Years of Global Warming and Cooling at the New York Times

Read more here.

May 26, 2018
Climate scientist: air pollution cleanup may be major driver of global warming

Anthony Watts and Richard Keen

Observations during lunar eclipses show how Earth’s atmosphere has cleared, letting in more sunlight

Strange but true: You can learn a lot about Earth’s climate by watching a lunar eclipse. This week at the 46th Global Monitoring Annual Conference (GMAC) in Boulder, CO, climate scientist Richard Keen of the University of Colorado announced new results from decades of lunar eclipse monitoring.

“Based on the color and brightness of recent eclipses, we can say that Earth[s stratosphere is as clear as it has been in decades. There are very few volcanic aerosols up there,” he explains.

This is important, climatologically, because a clear stratosphere “lets the sunshine in” to warm the Earth below.

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To illustrate the effect that volcanic aerosols have on eclipses, Keen prepared a side-by-side comparison (above) of a lunar eclipse observed in 1992 after the Philippine volcano Pinatubo spewed millions of tons of gas and ash into the atmosphere vs. the latest “all-clear” eclipse in January 2018.

“Compared to the murky decades of the El Chichon and Pinatubo, the clear stratosphere since 1995 has allowed the intensity of sunlight reaching the ground to increase by about 0.6 Watts per square meter,” says Keen. “That’s equivalent to a warming of 1 or 2 tenths of a degree C (0.1 C to 0.2 C).”

“In other words,” he adds, “over the past 40 years, the decrease of volcanic aerosols and the increase of greenhouse gases have contributed equally to the total warming (~0.3 C) observed in global satellite temperature records.”

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Enlarged

Total lunar eclipses happen somewhere on Earth typically once or twice a year. Keen is looking forward to the next one on July 27, 2018, which will be the longest lunar eclipse of the century. The Moon will pass almost directly through the middle of Earth’s shadow, remaining inside for 1 hour and 43 minutes. That’s just a few minutes shy of the theoretical maximum.

“This will give us plenty of time to measure the color and brightness of Earth’s shadow and, thus, the aerosol content of the stratosphere,” says Keen.

For more information about lunar eclipses and climate change, check out Keen’s poster from the GMAC.

Note as we showed here, the satellite temperatures show clearly the effects of high and low aerosols using NASA’s Aerosol Optical Thickness (Sato).

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And this annual temperature plots for high and low aerosols show the patterns globally.

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May 18, 2018
Eastern States Promote Offshore Wind Systems, but They Are Expensive and High Risk

Steve Goreham

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Several eastern US states are planning major investments in offshore wind. Wind turbines are touted as clean, green, and economically sound. But experience from around the world shows that offshore wind systems are both expensive and at high risk for early system degradation.

The governors of Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New York, New Jersey, Maryland, and Virginia have signed executive orders or passed laws to procure offshore wind systems valued at billions of dollars. Officials are eager to win leadership in what is perceived to be a new growth industry. The US Department of Energy has funded over $200 million in offshore wind research since 2011.

Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker signed a law in 2016 requiring utilities to purchase 1,600 megawatts of electricity from offshore wind systems over the next 10 years. The law requires that wind systems be “cost effective to electric ratepayers.” But history shows that costs are likely to be far above the New England wholesale market price of 5 cents per kilowatt-hour.

Massachusetts paid solar generators a subsidy of 25 cents per kilowatt-hour during the state’s solar build-out in 2013. Rhode Island’s Block Island wind system, the first offshore system in the United States, now receives over 27 cents per kW-hr, with an annual guaranteed rate increase of an additional 3.5 cents per kW-hr. New England residents must enjoy paying renewable generators more than six times the market price for electricity.

In May of last year, Maryland’s Public Service Commission (PSC) approved electricity-rate increases to fund two wind projects east of the Ocean City shoreline. Maryland’s residents will pay an additional $2 billion over 20 years in increased electricity rates to support the projects. The Maryland PSC claims the systems will create jobs and spur economic growth, but analysis shows that rate payers will pay $200,000 for each of the estimated 9,700 jobs created.

Also in 2017, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced approval of the South Fork Wind Farm off the coast of Long Island, stating “This project will not only provide a new reliable source of clean energy, but will also create high-paying jobs, continue our efforts to combat climate change and help preserve our environment for current and future generations of New Yorkers.”

But are offshore wind systems reliable? Ocean-located turbines face one of the harshest environments on Earth. Turbines are battered by wind and waves, struck by lightning, and need to endure salt spray that is very corrosive to man-made structures.

In February, it was reported that Danish wind operator Orsted must repair more than 600 wind turbines due to early blade failure. The blades are to be disassembled and brought to shore for repair after only five years of operation, at a cost on the order of $100 million.

Then in March, it was announced that wind turbines at the 175-turbine London Array, the world’s largest offshore wind system, would also need major repairs after only five years of use. Few offshore systems have made it to the end their specified 25-year lifetimes without a major overhaul.

Wind turbines sited off the eastern US coast must survive brutal weather compared to offshore turbines in Europe. From March 1 to March 22 of this year, four powerful extratropical cyclones, called nor’easters, battered our east coast from Virginia to Maine. These storms produced ocean storm surges, large snowfalls, wind gusts of up to 100 miles per hour, and even 20 tornados.

Specifications call for wind systems to withstand gusts up to 156 miles per hour, but this isn’t good enough for some of our Atlantic hurricanes. Last September, hurricane Maria struck Puerto Rico with Category 4-strength winds and destroyed many of the wind turbines on the island.

Strong hurricanes occasionally collide with our eastern coastal states. The Great New England Hurricane of 1938 brought Category 3 winds to New York, Connecticut, and Rhode Island. The Great Atlantic Hurricane of 1944 delivered Category 2 winds along the coast from North Carolina to Maine. Hurricane Carol in 1954 and Hurricane Gloria in 1985 brought Category 3 winds to the shores of the wind system-promoting states.

Finally, the Norfolk and Long Island Hurricane of 1821 passed through most of the proposed wind turbine sites with up to Category 4 wind strength. The expensive wind systems planned by Atlantic States could all be destroyed by a single well-placed hurricane.

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Offshore wind turbines are expensive, prone to early degradation, and in the case of the US East Coast, at risk in the path of strong hurricanes. State officials should reconsider their plans for offshore wind systems.

Steve Goreham is a speaker on the environment, business, and public policy and author of the book Outside the Green Box: Rethinking Sustainable Development.

May 08, 2018
Study: Climate skeptics engage in more eco-friendly behavior than climate alarmists

Dave Huber - Assistant Editor

A new study suggests those skeptical about climate change and climate alarmism behave in more climate-friendly ways than do those who are very concerned about the issue.

University of Michigan psychology graduate student Michael Hall’s study looked at 600 Americans who “regularly reported their climate change beliefs, pro-environmental behavior, and other climate-change related measures.”

The results, published in the Journal of Environmental Psychology, divided subjects into three categories: the “Skeptical,” the “Cautiously Worried,” and the “Highly Concerned.” As you might expect, the “Skeptical” were most opposed to government climate policies; however, they were also “most likely to report engaging in individual-level pro-environmental behaviors” (emphasis added).

On the other hand, the “Highly Concerned,” while very supportive of government action on climate, were the least likely to behave in eco-friendly ways.

Does this surprise anyone?

Pacific Standard has more:

On seven occasions- roughly once every eight weeks -participants revealed their climate change beliefs, and their level of support for policies such as gasoline taxes and fuel economy standards.

They also noted how frequently they engaged in four environmentally friendly behaviors: recycling, using public transportation, buying “green” products, and using reusable shopping bags.

While policy preferences of group members tracked with their beliefs, their behaviors largely did not: Skeptics reported using public transportation, buying eco-friendly products, and using reusable bags more often than those in the other two categories.

This pattern was found consistently through the year, leading the researchers to conclude that “belief in climate change does not appear to be a necessary or sufficient condition for pro-environmental behavior.”

Hall and his colleagues can only speculate about the reasons for their results. But regarding the concerned but inactive, the psychological phenomenon known as moral licensing is a likely culprit.

That “moral licensing” certainly sounds like an inconvenient truth regarding the best known climate alarmist, former veep Al Gore. His mansion reportedly uses 21.3 times more kilowatt hours than the average US household - “including 66,159 kWh just to heat his swimming pool [for a year] - but his camp counters with the following:

“[Gore] leads a carbon neutral life by purchasing green energy, reducing carbon impacts and offsetting any emissions that cannot be avoided, all within the constraints of an economy that still relies too heavily on dirty fossil fuels,” said Betsy McManus, Gore’s director of communications.

She just didn’t respond, however, when asked what those offsets are.

Mar 02, 2018
Alarmist Claim Rebuttal Overview

Below are a series of rebuttals of typical climate alarmists’ claims such as those made in the recently released Fourth National Climate Assessment Report.  The authors of these rebuttals are all recognized experts in the relevant scientific fields. The rebuttals demonstrate the falsity of EPA’s claims merely by citing the most credible empirical data on the topic. For each alarmist claim, a summary of the relevant rebuttal is provided along with a link to the full text of the rebuttal which includes the names and the credentials of the authors of each rebuttal.

Claim: Heat Waves are increasing at an alarming rate and heat kills.
Summary of Rebuttal

There has been no detectable long-term increase in heat waves in the United States or elsewhere in the world. Most all-time record highs here in the U.S. happened many years ago, long before mankind was using much fossil fuel. Thirty-eight states set their all-time record highs before 1960 (23 in the 1930s!).  Here in the United States, the number of 100F, 95F and 90F days per year has been steadily declining since the 1930s. The Environmental Protection Agency Heat Wave Index confirms the 1930s as the hottest decade. James Hansen while at NASA in 1999 said about the U.S. temperature record “In the U.S. the warmest decade was the 1930s and the warmest year was 1934”.  When NASA was challenged on the declining heat records in the U.S, the reply was that the U.S. is just 2% of the world.  However, all 8 continents recorded their all-time record highs before 1980. Interestingly while the media gives a great deal of coverage to even minor heat waves to support the case that man-made global warming is occurring, the media tends to ignore deadly cold waves. But in actual fact worldwide cold kills 20 times as many people as heat. This is documented in the “Excess Winter Mortality” which shows that the number of deaths in the 4 coldest winter months is much higher than the other 8 months of the year. The USA death rate in January and February is more than 1000 deaths per day greater than in it is July and August. Clearly, there is no problem with increased heat waves due to Climate Change.
Detailed Rebuttal and Authors: EF_RRT_AC - Heat Waves

Claim: Global warming is causing more hurricanes and stronger hurricanes.
Summary of Rebuttal

There has been no detectable long-term trend in the number and intensity of hurricane activity globally. The activity does vary year to year and over multidecadal periods as ocean cycles including El Nino/La Nina, multidecadal cycles in the Pacific (PDO) and Atlantic (AMO) favor some basins over others. The trend in landfalling storms in the United States has been flat to down since the 1850s. Before the active hurricane season in the United States in 2017, there had been a lull of 4324 days (almost 12 years) in major hurricane landfalls, the longest lull since the 1860s.
Harvey was the first hurricane to make landfall in Texas since Ike in 2008 and the first Category 4 hurricane in Texas since Hurricane Carla in 1961. There has been a downtrend in Texas of both hurricanes and major hurricanes. Texas is an area where Gulf Tropical Storms and hurricanes often stall for days, and 6 of the heaviest tropical rainfall events for the U.S. have occurred in Texas. Harvey’s rains were comparable to many of these events. Claudette in 1979 had an unofficial rainfall total greater than in Harvey. In Florida, where Irma hit as a category 4 on the Keys, it came after a record 4339 days (just short of 12 years) without a landfalling hurricane. The previous record lull was in the 1860s (8 years). There has been no trend in hurricane intensity or landfalling frequency since at least 1900.
Detailed Rebuttal and Authors: EF_RRT_AC - Hurricanes

Claim: Global warming is causing more and stronger tornadoes.
Summary of Rebuttal

Tornadoes are failing to follow “global warming” predictions. Big tornadoes have seen a decline in frequency since the 1950s. The years 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016 all saw below average to near record low tornado counts in the U.S. since records began in 1954.  2017 rebounded only to the long-term mean.  This lull followed a very active and deadly strong La Nina of 2010/11, which like the strong La Nina of 1973/74 produced record setting and very deadly outbreaks of tornadoes. Population growth and expansion outside urban areas have exposed more people to the tornadoes that once roamed through open fields. Tornado detection has improved with the addition of NEXRAD, the growth of the trained spotter networks, storm chasers armed with cellular data and imagery and the proliferation of cell phone cameras and social media. This shows up most in the weak EF0 tornado count but for storms from moderate EF1 to strong EF 3+ intensity, the trend has been flat to down despite improved detection.
Detailed Rebuttal and Authors: EF_RRT_CA - Tornadoes


Claim: Global warming is increasing the magnitude and frequency of droughts and floods.

Summary of Rebuttal

Our use of fossil fuels to power our civilization is not causing droughts or floods. NOAA found there is no evidence that floods and droughts are increasing because of climate change. The number, extend or severity of these events does increase dramatically for a brief period of years at some locations from time to time but then conditions return to more normal. This is simply the long-established constant variation of weather resulting from a confluence of natural factors.  In testimony before Congress Professor Roger Pielke, Jr. said: “It is misleading, and just plain incorrect, to claim that disasters associated with hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, or droughts have increased on climate timescales either in the United States or globally. Droughts have, for the most part, become shorter, less frequent, and cover a smaller portion of the U.S. over the last century.” “The good news is U.S. flood damage is sharply down over 70 years,” Roger Pielke Jr. said. “Remember, disasters can happen any time....”. But it is also good to understand long-term trends based on data, not hype.”
Detailed Rebuttal and Authors: EF_RRT_AC - Droughts and Floods


Claim: Global Warming has increased U.S. Wildfires.

Summary of Rebuttal

Wildfires are in the news almost every late summer and fall.  The National Interagency Fire Center has recorded the number of fires and acreage affected since 1985. This data show the number of fires trending down slightly, though the acreage burned had increased before leveling off over the last 20 years. The NWS tracks the number of days where conditions are conducive to wildfires when they issue red-flag warnings. It is little changed. 2017 was an active fire year in the U.S. but my no means a record. The U.S. had 64,610 fires, the 7th most since in 11 years and the most since 2012.  The 9,574, 533 acres burned was the 4th most in 11 years and most since 2015. The fires burned in the Northwest including Montana with a very dry summer then the action shifted south seasonally with the seasonal start of the wind events like Diablo in northern California and Santa Ana to the south. Fires spread to northern California in October with an episode of the dry Diablo wind that blows from the east and then in December as strong and persistent Santa Ana winds and dry air triggered a round of large fires in Ventura County. According to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection the 2017 California wildfire season was the most destructive one on record with a total of 8,987 fires that burned 1,241,158 acres. It included five of the 20 most destructive wildland-urban interface fires in the state’s history. When it comes to considering the number of deaths and structures destroyed, the seven-fold increase in population in California from 1930 to 2017 must be noted. Not only does this increase in population mean more people and home structures in the path of fires, but it also means more fires.  Lightning and campfires caused most historic fires; today most are the result of power lines igniting trees.  The power lines have increased proportionately with the population, so it can be reasoned that most of the damage from wild fires in California is a result of increased population not Global Warming. The increased danger is also greatly aggravated by poor government forest management choices.
Detailed Rebuttal and Authors: EF_RRT_AC - Wildfires

Claim: Global warming is causing snow to disappear.
Summary of Rebuttal

This is one claim that has been repeated for decades even as nature showed very much the opposite trend with unprecedented snows even to the big coastal cities. Every time they repeated the claim, it seems nature upped the ante more. Alarmists have eventually evolved to crediting warming with producing greater snowfall, because of increased moisture but the snow events in recent years have usually occurred in colder winters with high snow water equivalent ratios in frigid arctic air. Snowcover in the Northern Hemisphere, North America and Eurasia has been increasing since the 1960s in the fall and winter but declining in the spring. However, as NOAA advised might be the case, snowcover measurement methodology changes at the turn of this century may be responsible for part of the warm season differences.
Detailed Rebuttal and Authors: EF_RRT_CA - Snow

Claim: Global warming is resulting in rising sea levels as seen in both tide gauge and satellite technology.
Summary of Rebuttal

This claim is demonstrably false.  It really hinges on this statement: “Tide gauges and satellites agree with the model projections.” The models project a rapid acceleration of sea level rise over the next 30 to 70 years.  However, while the models may project acceleration, the tide gauges clearly do not. All data from tide gauges in areas where land is not rising or sinking show instead a steady linear and unchanging sea level rate of rise from 4 up to 6 inches/century, with variations due to gravitational factors.  It is true that where the land is sinking as it is in the Tidewater area of Virginia and the Mississippi Delta region, sea levels will appear to rise faster but no changes in CO2 production would change that. The implication that measured, validated, and verified Tide Gauge data support this conclusion remains simply false.  All such references rely on “semi-empirical” information, which merges, concatenates, combines, and joins, actual tide gauge data with various models of the reference author’s choosing.  Nowhere on this planet can a tide gauge be found, that shows even half of the claimed 3.3 mm Sea level rise rate in “Tectonically Inert” coastal zones.  These are areas that lie between regions of geological uplift and subsidence.  They are essentially neutral with respect to vertical land motion, and tide gauges located therein show between 1 mm/yr (3.9 inches/century) and 1.5 mm/yr (6 inches/century rise). The great Swedish Oceanographer, Nils-Axel Morner, has commented on this extensively, and his latest papers confirm this ‘inconvenient truth. Further, alarmist claims that “Satellites agree with the model projection” are false. Satellite technology was introduced to provide more objective measurement of the sea level rise because properly adjusted tide gauge data was not fitting Alarmists’ claims.  However, the new satellite and radar altimeter data lacked the resolution to accurately measure sea levels down to the mm level. Moreover, the raw data from this technology also conflicted with Alarmists’ claims. As a result, adjustments to this data were also made - most notably a Glacial Isostatic Adjustment (GIA). GIA assumes that basically all land is rebounding from long ago glaciations and oceanic basins are deepening. The assumption is that this rebounding is masking the true sea level rise. Alarmists continue to proclaim that their models project a rapid acceleration of sea level rise over the next 30 to 70 years, when those same models have failed to even come close to accurately measuring the past 25 years.
Detailed Rebuttal and Authors: EF_RRT_CA - Sea Level

Claim:  Arctic, Antarctic and Greenland ice loss is accelerating due to global warming.
Summary of Rebuttal

Satellite and surface temperature records and sea surface temperatures show that both the East Antarctic Ice Sheet and the West Antarctic Ice Sheet are cooling, not warming and glacial ice is increasing, not melting. Satellite and surface temperature measurements of the southern polar area show no warming over the past 37 years. Growth of the Antarctic ice sheets means sea level rise is not being caused by melting of polar ice and, in fact, is slightly lowering the rate of rise. Satellite Antarctic temperature records show 0.02C/decade cooling since 1979. The Southern Ocean around Antarctica has been getting sharply colder since 2006. Antarctic sea ice is increasing, reaching all-time highs. Surface temperatures at 13 stations show the Antarctic Peninsula has been sharply cooling since 2000. The Arctic includes the Arctic Ocean, Greenland, Iceland, and part of Siberia and northern Alaska. Because of the absence of any land mass in the Arctic Ocean, most of area lacks glaciers, which require a land mass. Thus, most of the Arctic contains only floating sea ice. Greenland, Iceland, northern Alaska, and northern Siberia contain the only glaciers in the general Arctic region. Arctic temperature records show that the 1920s and 1930s were warmer than 2000. Records of historic fluctuations of Arctic sea ice go back only to the first satellite images in 1979. That happens to coincide with the end of the 1945-1977 global cold period and the maximum extent of Arctic sea ice. During the warm period from 1978 until recently, the extent of sea ice has diminished, but increased in the past several years. The Greenland ice sheet has also grown recently.
Detailed Rebuttal and Authors: EF_RRT_AC - Arctic, Antarctic, Greenland 123117

Claim: Rising atmospheric CO2 concentrations are causing ocean acidification, which is catastrophically harming marine life.
Summary of Rebuttal

As the airs CO2 content rises in response to ever-increasing anthropogenic CO2 emissions, more and more carbon dioxide is expected to dissolve into the surface waters of the world’s oceans, which dissolution is projected to cause a 0.3 to 0.7 pH unit decline in the planet’s oceanic waters by the year 2300. A potential pH reduction of this magnitude has provoked concern and led to predictions that, if it occurs, marine life will be severely harmed - with some species potentially driven to extinction - as they experience negative impacts in growth, development, fertility and survival. This ocean acidification hypothesis, as it has come to be known, has gained great momentum in recent years, because it offers a second independent reason to regulate fossil fuel emissions in addition to that provided by concerns over traditional global warming. For even if the models are proven to be wrong with respect to their predictions of atmospheric warming, extreme weather, glacial melt, sea level rise, or any other attendant catastrophe, those who seek to regulate and reduce CO2 emissions have a fall-back position, claiming that no matter what happens to the climate, the nations of the Earth must reduce their greenhouse gas emissions because of projected direct negative impacts on marine organisms via ocean acidification.The ocean chemistry aspect of the ocean acidification hypothesis is rather straightforward, but it is not as solid as it is often claimed to be. For one thing, the work of a number of respected scientists suggests that the drop in oceanic pH will not be nearly as great as the IPCC and others predict. And, as with all phenomena involving living organisms, the introduction of life into the analysis greatly complicates things. When a number of interrelated biological phenomena are considered, it becomes much more difficult, if not impossible, to draw such sweeping negative conclusions about the reaction of marine organisms to ocean acidification. Quite to the contrary, when life is considered, ocean acidification is often found to be a non-problem, or even a benefit. And in this regard, numerous scientific studies have demonstrated the robustness of multiple marine plant and animal species to ocean acidification - when they are properly performed under realistic experimental conditions.
Detailed Rebuttal and Author: EF_RRT_CA - Ocean pH

Claim: Carbon pollution is a health hazard.
Summary of Rebuttal

The term “carbon pollution” is a deliberate, ambiguous, disingenuous term, designed to mislead people into thinking carbon dioxide is pollution. It is used by the environmentalists to confuse the environmental impacts of CO2 emissions with the impact of the emissions of unwanted waste products of combustion. The burning of carbon-based fuels (fossil fuels - coal, oil, natural gas - and biofuels and biomass) converts the carbon in the fuels to carbon dioxide (CO2), which is an odorless invisible gas that is plant food and it is essential to life on the planet. Because the burning of the fuel is never 100% efficient, trace amounts of pollutants including unburnt carbon are produced in the form of fine particulates (soot), hydrocarbon gases and carbon monoxide.  In addition, trace amounts of sulfur oxides, nitrogen oxides and other pollutant constituents can be produced.  In the US, all mobile and industrial stationary combustion sources must have emission control systems that remove the particulates and gaseous pollutants so that the emissions are in compliance with EPA’s emission standards.  The ambient air pollutant concentrations have been decreasing for decades and are going to keep decreasing for the foreseeable future because of existing non-GHG-related regulations.
Detailed Rebuttal and Authors: EF_RRT_AC - Health


Conclusion

The well-documented invalidation of the “three lines of evidence” upon which EPA attributes global warming to human-caused CO2 emissions breaks the causal link between such emissions and global warming. {See here and here). 

This in turn necessarily breaks the causal chain between CO2 emissions and the alleged knock-on effects of global warming, such as loss of Arctic ice, increased sea level, and increased heat waves, floods, droughts, hurricanes, tornadoes, etc. These alleged downstream effects are constantly cited to whip up alarm and create demands for ever tighter CO2 regulation. EPA explicitly relied on predicted increases in such events to justify the Endangerment Finding. But as shown above, there is no evidence to support such claims, and copious empirical evidence that refutes them. The enormous cost and essentially limitless scope of the government’s regulatory authority over GHG/CO2 emissions cannot lawfully rest upon a collection of scary stories that are conclusively disproven by readily available empirical data.The legal criteria for reconsidering the Endangerment Finding are clearly present in this case. The scientific foundation of the Endangerment Finding has been invalidated. The parade of horrible calamities that the Endangerment Finding predicts and that a vast program of regulation seeks to prevent have been comprehensively and conclusively refuted by empirical data. The Petition for Reconsideration should be granted. 

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