Pope Francis has said he wanted the encyclical (text released - here) to be read by everyone - not just Catholics - and he notes in the introduction that the document is now part of the formal teaching “magisterium” of the Catholic Church. That could be read as a warning of sorts to climate skeptics, including many Catholics in the U.S. who have suggested they simply will ignore the encyclical since the pope’s views on the environment clash with their doubts about climate change.
Sorry as a lifetime practicing Catholic, I will ignore your encyclical and support my local church but no longer the Vatican. Your Scientific Advisory Board refused to hear from our side. We sent a contingent to Rome and a letter signed by 500+ multidenominational scientists, economists explaining how the athiest UN one world government plans will seriously hurt the poor. Unlike what you suggest providing energy - fossil fuels and agricultural technology to the poor saves and enriches lives of the world’s poorest people. Don’t lecture us on topics you know nothing about. The Vatican is said to be concerned about not making a mistake like they did with Galileo but ironically by listening to the phoney consensus idea, you will ensure the church will again be on wrong side of history. The so called scientist standing besides Pope Francis this Thursday believes that the population of the earth at 7 billion is unsupportable and the loss of 6 billion would be a good thing for the planet. Pray for us all. See an example of Shellnhuber’s junk science here. See comments on the paper here. He is so bad, he would fit right in on The Weather Channel.
By Myron Ebell, CEI
A version, but perhaps not the final version, of Pope Francis’s encyclical on climate change was leaked to and published by an Italian paper today. For those who read Italian (not Latin), it’s available here This leak moved up the release of a short video by our friends at the Energy and Environment Legal Institute, which is their response. It’s two minutes long and can be watched here:
Also, Fred Smith, founder and former president of CEI, published the article pasted below on Forbes Online today.
The key points to my mind are that global warming is a moral issue and that the effects of energy rationing policies, particularly on poor people, need to be considered. That changes the moral equation. Second, if alarmists push the Pope’s moral authority, then ask them whether they also agree with the Pope on abortion, population control, gender issues, gay marriage, etc.
Fred Smith Contributor
I work to reduce regulation and expose its enormous costs.
The Pope, Poverty And Global Warming
The world waits in anticipation as Pope Francis and his advisers finalize an official Vatican statement on climate change and the environment - expected out this week. The Pope is reportedly worried about how climate change might impact the poor, and he is quite right to be concerned. But it is the environmental proposals currently being championed as solutions, however, that are the real threat. The most frequently cited policies for allegedly “dealing with climate change” - like raising prices on fossil fuels and taxing carbon dioxide emissions - would actually cause harm to energy-starved and impoverished nations around the world.
Environmental activists argue the continued use of fossil fuels will produce dramatic changes in the climate that will harm future generations. Therefore, if we succeed in capping greenhouse gases, many, especially the most vulnerable, will benefit. Opponents counter that restricting fossil fuel use will harm poor people today both by slowing economic growth and by denying them access to more efficient, dependable fuels.
Asking the poor of today to sacrifice their livelihoods and hopes in the name of reducing energy use would be a great injustice. Faster growth means more wealth and greater knowledge for future generations. Whatever challenges climate change may bring, our smarter, richer great-grandchildren will have better tools and more abundant resources to deal with them than we have today.
The Catholic Church has a history of resolving complex risk situations. For example, to ensure that saints were properly selected, the Church ensured that both sides of the case were heard. The Advocatus Dei made the case favoring that decision; the Advocatus Diablo - “Devil’s Advocate” - made the opposing case. One hopes that in addressing the morality of energy restrictions, both sides will be heard. The Vatican has heard the case for conventional environmental policies, having recently hosted a conference on this topic. Have they heard the opposing view?
Long before the theoretical effects of climate change are ever felt, the alarmist policies favored by United Nations agencies and major environmental advocacy groups would severely hobble developing countries’ economies. Replacing affordable and reliable fossil fuels with more expensive, less reliable alternative sources would increase the cost of energy around the world. That would be bad enough for low income people in developed nations. If forced on developing countries, it would be a humanitarian disaster.
The world’s poorest people already spend a disproportionate amount of their income on energy. Increasing prices would block the shift in poorer nations from “biomass” fuels like dried animal dung to much healthier alternatives like propane and natural gas.
Increasing energy costs will slow the process of replacing backbreaking human labor with mechanical devices, as occurred over the past century in now-wealthy Western countries. The next stage of industrialization and prosperity will be blocked, as the factories and processes that the United States and Europe used to grow their economies in the 19th and 20th centuries will no longer be affordable - or possibly even allowed under international law.
The impact on individuals and families in poor countries will also be enormous. When a key economic input like fossil fuel energy artificially increases in price, virtually everything becomes more expensive. For the 1.2 billion people living on less than $1 a day, making everything they need to survive even marginally more expensive would be catastrophic.
None of this is to say that potential threats from future climate change should simply be ignored. If the world’s leaders - from heads of state to spiritual leaders like Pope Francis - want to help make the world a safer place, they should champion policies that improve society’s ability to cope with disasters, environmental and otherwise, and avoid those that hamper economic growth and innovation.
A wealthier world is a healthier world, and it’s the people at the bottom of the economic ladder who will benefit most from rising global prosperity. People of good faith have innumerable ways to help our fellow humans flourish and protect themselves from harm. Forcing them into perpetual energy poverty is not one of them. I hope Pope Francis will agree.
It’s Back. Slate reports the first hoax that opened the door to follow up ones like Acid Rain and then AGW is back in the news. The ‘fix’ never ereally worked because the problem never really existed. The Ozone hole was a natural phenomenon due to ice clouds forming at the end of the southern polar winter. It had never been seen before satellite and hasn’t changed since the world changed from CFCs to HFCs. But never mind. Now they are repeating the bad science and conclude HFCs are ‘powerful’ greenhouse gases. This from Slate.
You might remember that ozone gas - made from triplets of oxygen atoms -helps shield us from the sun’s harmful UV-B rays. Most of it is in the lower stratosphere, roughly six to 30 miles above the Earth’s surface, where it’s created naturally by the interaction of sunlight and regular oxygen. Other gases, particularly those containing chlorine or bromine, can make ozone molecules break apart. Starting in the 1970s, scientists suspected that the widespread use of industrial chemicals might be putting additional chlorine and bromine into the stratosphere. In particular, researchers worried about the chlorofluorocarbons used in fridges, air conditioners, and aerosol spray cans and the halon gases used in fire extinguishers. (Human technology also creates some ozone, but that stuff tends to stay close to the ground, where it causes a range of health issues.)
Meanwhile, fixing the hole in the ozone layer may end up worsening some other environmental problems. The hydrofluorocarbons we use in place of many CFCs don’t contribute to ozone depletion, but some of them have thousands of times the global warming potential of carbon dioxide.
Given the projected boom in usage in the developing world - thanks to a growing appetite for refrigerators and air conditioners - these chemicals may end up being a major contributor to climate change. (Researchers estimate that HFCs could be one-fifth as problematic as carbon dioxide by the year 2050.) Earlier this month, the United States, Canada, and Mexico issued a joint proposal for a “phase down” in HFCs, which can be replaced in some applications with more eco-friendly options, like carbon dioxide, ammonia, or HFCs with lower global-warming potential. In November, the signatories of the Montreal Protocol will hold their annual meeting in Egypt, so we should hear more on this topic in the next few months.
Back in 2011, this post was on Icecap.
Dr. Wil Happer of Princeton wrote “The Montreal Protocol to ban freons was the warm-up exercise for the IPCC. Many current IPCC players gained fame then by stampeding the US Congress into supporting the Montreal Protocol. They learned to use dramatized, phony scientific claims like “ozone holes over Kennebunkport” (President Bush Sr’s seaside residence in New England). The ozone crusade also had business opportunities for firms like Dupont to market proprietary “ozone-friendly” refrigerants at much better prices than the conventional (and more easily used) freons that had long-since lost patent protection and were not a cheap commodity with little profit potential” (link).
Even James Lovelock agrees. James Lovelock formulated the Gaia hypothesis, which postulates that the biosphere is a self-regulating entity with the capacity to keep our planet healthy by controlling the chemical and physical environment. He later became concerned that global warming would upset the balance and leave only the arctic as habitable. He began to move off this position in 2007 suggesting that the Earth itself is in “no danger” because it would stabilize in a new state.
James Lovelock’s reaction to first reading about the leaked CRU emails in late 2009 was one of a true scientist. “I was utterly disgusted. My second thought was that it was inevitable. It was bound to happen. Science, not so very long ago, pre-1960s, was largely vocational. Back when I was young, I didn’t want to do anything else other than be a scientist. They’re not like that nowadays. They don’t give a damn. They go to these massive, mass-produced universities and churn them out. They say: “Science is a good career. You can get a job for life doing government work.” That’s no way to do science.
I have seen this happen before, of course. We should have been warned by the CFC/ozone affair because the corruption of science in that was so bad that something like 80% of the measurements being made during that time were either faked, or incompetently done.
Fudging the data in any way whatsoever is quite literally a sin against the holy ghost of science. I’m not religious, but I put it that way because I feel so strongly. It’s the one thing you do not ever do. You’ve got to have standards.”
On a March 2010 Guardian interview, Lovelock opined “The great climate science centres around the world are more than well aware how weak their science is. If you talk to them privately they’re scared stiff of the fact that they don’t really know what the clouds and the aerosols are doing...We do need skepticism about the predictions about what will happen to the climate in 50 years, or whatever. It’s almost naive, scientifically speaking, to think we can give relatively accurate predictions for future climate. There are so many unknowns that it’s wrong to do it.”
Will Happer further elaborated “The Montreal Protocol may not have been necessary to save the ozone, but it had limited economic damage. It has caused much more damage in the way it has corrupted science. It showed how quickly a scientist or activist can gain fame and fortune by purporting to save planet earth. We have the same situation with CO2 now, but CO2 is completely natural, unlike freons. Planet earth is quite happy to have lots more CO2 than current values, as the geological record clearly shows. If the jihad against CO2 succeeds, there will be enormous economic damage, and even worse consequences for human liberty at the hands of the successful jihadists.”
LIKE GLOBAL WARMING THE DATA DOESN’T SUPPORT THE THEORY
The ozone hole has not closed off after we banned CFCs. See this story in Nature about how the Consensus about the Ozone Hole and Man’s Role (with CFCs) May Be Falling Apart.
The size of the hole has hardly changed since 1990 (enlarged here).
“As the world marks 20 years since the introduction of the Montreal Protocol to protect the ozone layer, Nature has learned of experimental data that threaten to shatter established theories of ozone chemistry. If the data are right, scientists will have to rethink their understanding of how ozone holes are formed and how that relates to climate change. Markus Rex, an atmosphere scientist at the Alfred Wegener Institute of Polar and Marine Research in Potsdam, Germany, did a double-take when he saw new data for the break-down rate of a crucial molecule, dichlorine peroxide (Cl2O2). The rate of photolysis (light-activated splitting) of this molecule reported by chemists at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California1, was extremely low in the wavelengths available in the stratosphere - almost an order of magnitude lower than the currently accepted rate.
“This must have far-reaching consequences,” Rex says. “If the measurements are correct we can basically no longer say we understand how ozone holes come into being.” What effect the results have on projections of the speed or extent of ozone depletion remains unclear.
Other groups have yet to confirm the new photolysis rate, but the conundrum is already causing much debate and uncertainty in the ozone research community. “Our understanding of chloride chemistry has really been blown apart,” says John Crowley, an ozone researcher at the Max Planck Institute of Chemistry in Mainz, Germany. “Until recently everything looked like it fitted nicely,” agrees Neil Harris, an atmosphere scientist who heads the European Ozone Research Coordinating Unit at the University of Cambridge, UK. “Now suddenly it’s like a plank has been pulled out of a bridge.”
Yet like the cultists whose spacecraft didn’t arrive on the announced date, the government scientists find ways to postpone it and save their reputations (examples “Increasing greenhouse gases could delay, or even postpone indefinitely the recovery of stratospheric ozone in some regions of the Earth, a Johns Hopkins earth scientist suggests” here and “Scientists Find Antarctic Ozone Hole to Recover Later than Expected” here.
“The warmers are getting more and more like those traditional predictors of the end of the world who, when the event fails to happen on the due date, announce an error in their calculations and a new date.” Dr. John Brignell, Emeritus Engineering Professor at the University of Southampton, on Number Watch (May 1) PDF