Political Climate
Oct 14, 2011
Recent postings at SPPI


Oct 11, 2011
Hansen: A failure to communicate. ICECAP: No! A failed science

It was simply a PR failure?! NASA Warmist James Hansen: Climate skeptics are winning the battle—due to skeptics ‘employing communications professionals’

‘Part of the problem, Hansen said, was that the climate sceptic lobby employed communications professionals, whereas ‘scientists are just barely competent at communicating with the public and don’t have the wherewithal to do it.’

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Unbelievable. Lets look at the facts:

(1) Warmists have dominated in all the popular journals by orehestrating control over the societies and editorial boards of the journals. They have the mainstream media in their camp. This is true of the magazines like Time, Newsweek, Scientific American, newspapers like the New York Times, WAPO, HUFFPO, LA Times, and on and on in this country and most of the intelligensia rags in foreign countries.  Smaller papers like the Washington Times, New York Post, the Examiners, more obscure journals, talk radio and the internet are the only places where the truth can be found.

(2) Also Hansen and the modelers have failed in every prediction - temperatures stopped rising, sea level did not accelerate but slowed and now is failing. Winters are colder and snowier not warm and snowless. I could go on. Art Horn in his Energy Tribune story in Icing the Hype below tells it well.

(3) They have no sense of history. See this excellent post by Steve Goddard where Steve takes on Hansen’s claims that the Texas Drought of 2011, the Russian heat of 2010 and the Europe heat wave of 2003 are proof he was right even though his movement failed in every other respect.

I did not mention the politicians and environmental and corporate support for the green agenda and the trillions of dollars spent pushing the warmsist position. Despite claims of big oil funding, most of the truth squad works pro-bono. 

No James, you haven’t failed because of poor communication. You have failed becaused your richly financed, pseudo-science is being seen for what it is - a failure. 



Oct 09, 2011
The phony ‘consensus’ on climate change:

SPPI Blog

The end is near…

...that is, for the myth that scientists have reached “consensus” on global warming and climate change caused by humans.

The theory (more accurately called a religion for the redistribution of wealth) has taken a number of body blows in recent times - although the climate-change lobby is still straining to impose its view on the world. For example, Time magazine issued a screed headlined “Who’s Bankrolling the Climate-Change Deniers?” The piece wonders why any doubts linger. Time says, “an overwhelming scientific consensus that says it does.”

Of course, this is the same magazine that predicted the onset of a new ice age in the early 1970s and scared the dickens out of millions. In the end, it turned out to be a myth.

That consensus exists today is just another myth, and it’s time to debunk it.

Even climate-change skeptics agree that the human race is changing the composition of the atmosphere. With more people on the planet enjoying great wealth and comfort thanks to industry, there’s a bit more carbon dioxide. That goes in the “So what?” file.

Beyond that, though, there is no consensus - not on whether C02 is warming the planet, not on how major those changes are, not on whether humanity is to blame, not on whether warmth is harmful and not on what to do about it.

Those who say otherwise and tout the alleged consensus are at best naive.

Take, for instance, former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman. At a national Republican debate he said that global-warming skeptics were denying what “98 out of 100 climate scientists” believe in.

James Taylor of the Heartland Institute quickly responded that Huntsman seemed to be referring to an online survey to which 77 people responded - a survey in which the questions were so slanted and vague as to be meaningless.

Scientists bailing out

That could be put down as one incident - except that the “consensus” trope is so widely used as a weapon to bludgeon critics into silence. The truth is that more and more scientists are rejecting the notion that such a complex debate can be closed.

Last month, for instance, a winner of the Nobel Prize in physics resigned from a major scientific group to protest its close-minded stance on climate change. In his resignation from the American Physical Society, Ivar Giaever wrote: “In the APS it is OK to discuss whether the mass of the proton changes over time and how a multi-universe behaves, but the evidence of global warming is incontrovertible?”

Others have been more blunt. Harold Lewis, emeritus professor of physics at the University of California, Santa Barbara, also resigned from the group with these words:

“It is of course, the global warming scam, with the (literally) trillions of dollars driving it, that has corrupted so many scientists, and has carried APS before it like a rogue wave. It is the greatest and most successful pseudoscientific fraud I have seen in my long life as a physicist.”

And just for argument, if numbers are the criterion, they have plenty of company. More than 400 scientists raised questions about the warming hypothesis in a 2007 report to the U.S. Senate. An update of that report in 2010 swelled that total to about 1,000 signers.

Meanwhile, more than 31,000 scientists have signed a petition denying that human activity is responsible for major climate change. The petition, now under the auspices of the Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine, asserts: “There is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of ... greenhouse gases is causing or will, in the foreseeable future, cause catastrophic heating of the Earth’s atmosphere and disruption of the Earth’s climate. Moreover, there is substantial scientific evidence that increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide produce many beneficial effects upon the natural plant and animal environments.”

If you want to play the numbers game, let’s look at one example: 52 scientists wrote a key warming tract, 2007′s IPCC Summary for Policymakers. That means they are outnumbered 600 to 1 by the signers of the Oregon Institute petition.

The carbon problem

Over the last decade, global emissions of carbon dioxide increased 28 percent. Africa’s carbon-dioxide emissions rose 30 percent, Asia’s 44 percent, and the Middle East’s 57 percent. China’s emissions more than doubled. China’s emissions in one year now total more than 2 billion tons more than what the U.S. produces. Plus, the pace if anything is accelerating. Last year China’s production of CO2 grew 10 percent, while emissions in the U.S. decreased.

Developing nations, and their billions of residents, are voting, by their actions, to reject climate-change hysteria. That’s because there are better places to spend money to achieve a better life in light of the flimsy foundation on which climate change is built.

But isn’t science on the side of the doomsayers? Not good science. The theories behind the hysteria are being shaken by new ideas and discoveries. Essential questions are still unanswered. For instance, Nobel Prize-winner Giaever is among those who have noted the difficulty in verifying any data about worldwide climate and in proving that warming would be a bad thing.

“The claim [how can you measure the average temperature of the whole earth for a whole year?] is that the temperature has changed from 288.0 to 288.8 degree Kelvin in about 150 years, which [if true] means to me is that the temperature has been amazingly stable, and both human health and happiness have definitely improved in this ‘warming’ period.”

The ocean problem

In talking to the New York Times, he brought up another inconvenient truth about the data: “There is no unusual rise in the ocean level, so where is the big problem?” What? Isn’t Antarctica about to melt, and isn’t New York going to be engulfed by the rising sea?

Um ...no. Last year, scientists involved in a key study claiming ocean levels were rising had to retract their research after finding mistakes that undermined the findings. The authors of the paper in Nature Geoscience said: “Since publication of our paper we have become aware of two mistakes which impact the detailed estimation of future sea level rise. This means that we can no longer draw firm conclusions regarding 21st century sea level rise from this study without further work.”

In other words, they don’t know. But one of the world’s leading researchers in sea-level studies says he does. And he says ocean levels are not - repeat, not - rising catastrophically. Nils-Axel Morner is chief of the paleogeophysics and geodynamics department at Sweden’s Stockholm University. He said the sea level rose by about 1 millimeter a year from about 1850 to perhaps 1940. That’s a tiny amount. But then sea levels fell. “There’s no trend, absolutely no trend,” Morner said.

What about the IPCC report on rising ocean levels? He said the IPCC team didn’t record ­- i.e., actually see - such an increase. It was a “correction factor” of a computer model. In other words, Morner said, “It is a falsification of the data set.” What about the Maldives Islands sinking into the Indian Ocean? Morner went there. Islanders confirmed there was a sinking of the sea level - in the 1970s. But it was probably caused by other factors, not the level of the ocean. That new level, moreover, “has been stable, has not changed in the last 35 years.”

Yet, what about the polar regions melting? “Antarctic is certainly not melting,” he said. “All the Antarctic records show expansion of ice.” Too often, he says, global warming theorists actually have no background in sea-level research. “So all this talk that sea level is rising, this stems from the computer modeling, not from observations,” Morner says. “The observations don’t find it!” A computer model is built with computer programming. And there’s that old acronym: “GIGO,” or Garbage In, Garbage Out.

As for the increase in carbon dioxide, human activity may be only a tiny factor. Last month, Murry Salby, chair of the climate department at Macquarie University in Australia, asserted that natural sources account for 96 percent of overall CO2 emissions. Furthermore, carbon dioxide is not the supervillain the warming crowd makes it out to be. It is essential to the environment, according to Craig Idso, chief of the Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide. He has even written a book listing 55 ways CO2 improves the environment. In extreme amounts virtually anything is a poison, but CO2 is simply not present in extreme amounts. And even if it were, there’s nothing anybody could do about it. “Everyone knows CO2 is a greenhouse gas,” Idso has said. “What very few people seem to know is that water vapor is a much more significant greenhouse gas, and so as far as I know we will not be able to control water vapor in the atmosphere as long as the wind blows over the ocean.”

That inconvenient sun

Which brings up the question: how about controlling the sun? In June, the National Solar Observatory and the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory reported three separate analyses indicating that the sun is now entering a cycle of low sunspot activity. Such periods have corresponded with global cooling - including the “Little Ice Age” from 1645 to 1715.

Moreover, a recent paper in the prestigious journal Nature reported on findings from Europe’s CERN Laboratory, the most advanced particle accelerator in the world. Scientists there have concluded that cosmic rays play a much larger role than previously thought in creating clouds on earth. Obviously, cloud cover has a huge effect on temperatures.

Which means that all warming theories have to go back to the drawing board.

Politics vs. science

There is furious debate going on these days over what to do about warming. The debate is mostly political, which would include scientists in search of government funding. Danish environmentalist Bjorn Lomborg, while asserting that the planet is warming, nevertheless argues “that many of the elaborate and expensive actions now being considered to stop global warming will cost hundreds of billions of dollars, are often based on emotional rather than strictly scientific assumptions, and may very well have little impact on the world’s temperature for hundreds of years.”

To sum up, neither scientists nor scientific theory provide a “consensus” on whether climate change is happening, what it might mean, and what to do about it. All this just underlines a central truth: Science is not a popularity contest. What counts is not how many people believe something, or whether they call themselves scientists, or whether they are able to bully critics into silence. What counts is what is true. The only honorable and useful course is for global-warming advocates to stop browbeating critics into silence while pretending that consensus exists. Instead it’s time to engage in an honest review of all the complex theory and data. Then and only then will rational progress be possible.



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