The most inconvenient truth for climate alarmists is the swelling ranks of influential scientists with dissenting opinions on global warming
Al Gore says global warming is an inconvenient truth. "Inconvenient" adds a clever twist to the name of the would-be president's popular documentary and book. But far worthier of scrutiny is the other word in the title: "Truth." Man-made global warming, says the former politician and a rising sea of climate alarmists, is not just inconvenient, it's an unequivocal, undeniable truth. In fact, the truth about global warming is so convincing that "debate in the scientific community is over."
Says who? Well, the United Nations for starters. On February 2 last year, the United Nations issued a press release highlighting its latest report, which apparently proved "changes in the atmosphere, the oceans and glaciers and ice caps now show unequivocally that the world is warming due to human activities" (emphasis mine throughout). According to Achim Steiner, executive director of the United Nations Environment Program (unep), Feb. 2, 2007, will perhaps one day be remembered as the day "where the question mark was removed behind the debate on whether climate change has anything to do with human activity on this planet."
Then in December, at the UN's circus-like climate conference in Bali, an updated version of the report, produced by the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (ipcc), was embraced by scientists and world leaders alike. Since then, the report-which is riddled with qualifying statements that corrode the report's fundamental premise (that global warming is a man-made crisis)-has been touted by the mainstream press as conclusive proof of man-made climate change. To climate activists, the case is closed on man-made global warming. But is it?
The Test of Truth
Flinging the word truth around is easy. Convicted criminals claim that the truth is they're innocent; car salesmen say the truth is they can't afford to drop the price further; a child with brownie mix smeared all over his face argues that he's telling the truth when he denies running his tongue round the mixing bowl. The real test of truth is whether or not it conforms with reality and is backed by verified, indisputable facts. For climate alarmists, the really inconvenient truth is that a burgeoning number of scientists, climate experts and even politicians around the world are discussing facts that clash with the so-called truth that the globe is warming because of human activities.
The real truth is that the theory of man-made global warming-despite being virtually canonized in the UN and the minds of a slew of politicians and celebrities, and naturally in the mainstream media-remains one of the most contentious issues in science. That contention was on full display in New York City March 2-4. Those who depend solely on the mainstream newsmedia to keep them informed might have missed the headlines about the 2008 International Conference on Climate Change, sponsored by the Heartland Institute and featuring nearly 100 speakers and 500 attendees skeptical of man-made global warming. The three-day conference occurred in the wake of reports of global cooling and the release of a blockbuster U.S. Senate minority report featuring over 400 prominent scientists disputing the theory of man-made global warming. The conference testified to one towering truth in the world of science: Debate within the scientific community over global warming is far from dead.
The high-water mark of the conference was the presentation of a report produced by the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change (nipcc) claiming nature, not human activity, was the cause of climate change. The nipcc is comprised of international scientists and was formed as a counterforce to the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
International scientists, climate experts and policymakers at the event listened to lectures and panel discussions exposing the fraud of the global warming "truth," perused studies and reports showing stark division in the scientific community over global warming, and swapped stories about how they'd been "denied tenure, shut out of scientific conferences and rejected by academic journals because no matter how scrupulous their research," their conclusions contradicted the truth espoused by the climate change pharisees (National Post, March 10). Many attendees spoke of colleagues too afraid to attend the conference for fear of losing their jobs.
The U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works outlined the staggering scale of the global warming scam in its article "Climate Skeptics Reveal `Horror Stories' of Scientific Repression" (March 6). Take funding for global warming research, for example. Over the past decade, research intended to prove the veracity of man-made global warming has been funded to the tune of $50 billion, while global warming skeptic research has received a comparatively measly $19 million. That's over 260,000 percent more funding for the alarmists!
During the conference, the Business and Media Institute (bmi), a division of the Media Research Center (America's largest and most respected watchdog group), also released its comprehensive study on how the mainstream media reports on global warming. bmi's analysis of 205 network stories between July 1 and December 31 last year exposed the mainstream media as the largest propaganda vehicle for global warming crusaders: "Global warming proponents overwhelmingly outnumbered those with dissenting opinions. On average, for every skeptic there were nearly 13 proponents featured. abc did a slightly better job with a 7-to-1 ratio, while cbs's ratio was abysmal at nearly 38-to-1. . "Of the three networks (abc, nbc and cbs), 80 percent of stories (167 out of 205) didn't mention skepticism or anyone at all who dissented from global warming. cbs did the absolute worst job. Ninety-seven percent of its stories ignored other opinions" ("Global Warming Censored"). The lesson: Transforming a lie into truth before an unwitting public is made easier by silencing dissenting opinions. Eighty percent of news stories omitted the opposing view altogether. How fair and objective is that?
In an article on New York's climate conference in the Washington Post, Juliet Eilperin wrote: "Sponsored by the Heartland Institute, the 2 _-day session poses a stark contrast to the near-unanimous chorus of concern expressed by top U.S. politicians and most of the scientific mainstream" (March 4).
Near-unanimous chorus of concern?
Might the perceived "near-unanimous" concern about man-made global warming be a result of the gag order imposed on thousands of scientists and hundreds of reporters from around the world espousing a dissenting opinion? Any person who watches cbs News or reads the Washington Post would be forgiven for joining the ranks of those who believe global warming is a man-made crisis. Why? Because unanimity is easy when dissenting voices are ignored.
Despite Al Gore and the UN's claim that the case is closed on global warming, there are dissenting voices. Besides the conference in New York, besides the 400 skeptical scientists that signed the U.S. Senate minority report released a few months ago, countless other studies show dissent in the scientific community over man's role in global warming. The results of a Canadian survey of 51,000 earth scientists and engineers by the Association of Professional Engineers, Geologists and Geophysicists of Alberta, released March 6, showed that 68 percent disagreed with the statement "the debate on the scientific causes of recent climate change is settled." Near-unanimous?
Sliding Standards of Credibility
Later in the Post piece, Eilperin compared the UN-sponsored ipcc report with the nipcc report, pointing out that some of the authors of the nipcc report "were not scientists." The clear implication is that the nipcc report lacks scientific credibility, which is patently untrue.
But let's address scientific credibility. According to the bmi study mentioned above, just 15 percent of global warming proponents shown on network television are scientists, while the remaining 85 percent are politicians, celebrities and ordinary men and women (whose viewpoints are often shaped by the mainstream press). Clearly, scientific credibility is not a primary concern of the global warming propaganda machine.
Eilperin concluded her piece with a series of quotes from climate alarmists taking potshots at the so-called quacks who attended the New York conference. Because the media and many politicians are now ignoring the climate skeptics, said Princeton University geosciences professor Michael Oppenheimer, "They have to get together to talk to each other, because nobody else is talking to them."
Oppenheimer's remark makes for a tidy soundbite. But in truth, that conference illustrated the rising tide of scientists proving themselves willing to come out and declare man-made global warming to be a giant fraud. The U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works reported: "In such nations as Germany, Brazil, the Netherlands, Russia, Argentina, New Zealand, Portugal and France, groups of scientists have recently spoken out to oppose and debunk man-made climate fears. . "In January 2008, environmental scientist professor Delgado Domingos of Portugal, the founder and director of the Numerical Weather Forecast group, announced publicly that he considered co2-related climate fears to be `dangerous nonsense.'
"In addition, at least one scientist publicly pondered reconsidering his view of man-made climate fears after the Senate report of 400 scientists was released in December. `It (the Senate 400 scientists report) got me thinking: I'm an environmental scientist, but I've never had time to review the "evidence" for the anthropogenic causes of global warming,' wrote environmental scientist professor Rami Zurayk of the American University in Beirut on Dec. 27, 2007. `When I said, in my opening speech for the launch of unep's (United Nations Environment Program) Global Environment Outlook-4 in Beirut: "There is now irrevocable evidence that climate change is taking place ." I was reading from a statement prepared by unep. Faith-based science it may be, but who has time to review all the evidence? I'll continue to act on the basis of anthropogenic climate change, but I really need to put some more time into this,' Zurayk wrote" (op. cit.).
Professor Zurayk's stark admission raises an interesting question: How many scientists on the man-is-the-cause-of-global-warming bandwagon are there simply because they have followed their colleagues, the UN, Al Gore, Leonardo DiCaprio, or Bono? How many have proven scientifically that global warming has been induced by man?
European Birds Refuse to Respond to Warming as Climate Alarmists Say They Should
Warming INCREASES bird populations
In a paper recently published in Global Ecology and Biogeography, Javier Seoane and Luis Carrascal of the Museo Nacional de Ciencias Naturales in Madrid, Spain, write that "global climatic change has been proposed as one of the most likely environmental processes governing population trends," stating more specifically that "it has been hypothesized that species preferring low environmental temperatures, which inhabit cooler habitats or areas, would be negatively affected by global warming as a consequence of the widely accepted increase of temperature during the last two decades," while additionally noting that "this effect is assumed to be more intense at higher latitudes and altitudes because these areas seem to be changing more rapidly."
Hence, they devised a study "to assess whether population changes agree with what could be expected under global warming (a decrease in species typical of cooler environments)," focusing on birds. Working in the Spanish portion of the Iberian Peninsula in the southwestern part of the Mediterranean Basin, the two researchers determined breeding population changes for 57 species of common passerine birds between 1996 and 2004 in areas without any apparent land-use changes.
This work revealed, in their words, that "one-half of the study species showed significant increasing [our italics] recent trends despite the public concern that bird populations are generally decreasing," while "only one-tenth showed a significant decrease."In discussing their findings, Seoane and Carrascal state that "the coherent pattern in population trends we found disagrees [our italics] with the proposed detrimental effect of global warming on bird populations of western Europe."
And they are not the only ones to have come to this conclusion. They note, for example, that "one-half of terrestrial passerine birds in the United Kingdom exhibited increasing recent trends in a very similar time period (1994-2004)," citing Raven et al. (2005); and they note that "there is also a marked consistency between the observed increasing trends for forest and open woodland species in the Iberian Peninsula and at more northern European latitudes in the same recent years," citing Gregory et al. (2005).
Likewise, they write that "Julliard et al. (2004a), working with 77 common bird species in France, found that species with large ecological breadth showed a tendency to increase their numbers throughout the analyzed period."In further commenting on their findings, Seoane and Carrascal say that in their study, "bird species that inhabit dense wooded habitats show striking patterns of population increase throughout time."
Noting that "this is also the case with those bird species mainly distributed across central and northern Europe that reach their southern boundary limits in the north of the Iberian Peninsula," they speculate that "these short- to medium-term population increases may be due to concomitant increases in productivity," citing the thinking of Julliard et al. (2004b) and the empirical observations of Myneni et al. (1997), Tucker et al. (2001), Zhou et al. (2001), Fang et al. (2003) and Slayback et al. (2003), whose work figures prominently in establishing the reality of the late 20th-century warming- and CO2-induced greening of the earth phenomenon, which has produced, in the words of the Spanish scientists, "an increase in plant growth or terrestrial net primary production in middle latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere since the 1980s, particularly in forest environments.
"It should be clear from these several observations that the supposedly unprecedented warmth of the last two decades has not led to what Seoane and Carrascal call "the proposed detrimental effect of global warming on bird populations of western Europe." In fact, it appears to have done just the opposite, with a little help, we might add, from one of man's and nature's very best friends: the contemporary rise in the air's CO2 content.
An open letter to the General Manager, Global Warming - Europe
Dear Sir / Madam
As a long time resident of the south east of France, notably the famous region called "Provence", I would like to make a complaint. Firstly, I am writing to the "General Manager" because I assume that there must be one. With so many "experts" in the world, someone somewhere must manage them. I assume.
I have spent the day with 2 people from the south of England who are very serious about buying a property in northern Provence. They have read most of my previously published news articles about the climate (300 days of sunshine, Provencal summer and Alpine winters), the exchange rate (which is not getting any better - I have written to Mr. Brown and Mr. Bush too and have expressed my wish for comment by return of post), and the lifestyle which, I hasten to add, seems to be the only thing that is not in jeopardy at the moment.
So, why is it, then, that my clients and I have had to endure a day of driving rain, snow and gale force winds when I would have expected 20 degrees Celsius and deep blue skies? Why is it that spring has been denied the right to break when, according to your "experts", the planet is warming at an alarming rate and that "winter in Europe is a thing of the past"? (Incidentally, would you please also respond to the managers of the 31 ski resorts in Haute-Provence - they would be delighted to hear your explanation as to why they have to open for a good month longer than ten years ago).
Now I can already imagine your response - "we promised you 300 days of sunshine, and you'll have them. Yes, we will send you the snow in the winter, a spectacular spring and the beautiful May to September summer". Would you please, however, make sure that you do it when I have promised that you would?
It's spring now. The calendar says so. if the planet really is warming up, would you please send some of that warmth down to Provence and the southern Alps, and NOW. As I'm sure you'll appreciate, one of the reasons that people look for French property in Provence is for the predictable weather. So I'm starting to look a bit silly. I look forward to your swift response - a warm spell would suffice.
Heavy snow breaking plows in Yellowstone
Yellowstone officials say heavy snow has resulted in the breakdown of two bulldozers as road crews attempt to remove snow from park roads before they open for spring. The park has since rented two machines in an attempt to clear roads from Mammoth to the West Entrance and south to Old Faithful by opening day March 2.
Yellowstone spokesman Al Nash said this winter stands out as the snowiest in recent memory. "This is the most significant winter in terms of snowfall in years," he said. "It could be the most snowfall we've seen in seven to ten years. For a change we've had a normal winter."
Though cumulative snowfall amounts park-wide weren't available, Nash said that, during the month of March alone, the park's South Entrance received 101 inches. According to Nash, the snow is so deep in some places that the bulldozer operators have to push the snow off the roadway in layers to feed it to rotary plows that then blow it off the road surface.
The south and east areas of the park typically see the most snow, especially the road between the South Entrance and West Thumb, Dunraven Pass, the Beartooth Highway and Sylvan Pass. Even during poor snow years, snowbanks along Sylvan Pass can reach 30 feet high, Nash said.
So pollution is now good for you?
If it reduces warming, it must be, mustn't it?
Europe is heating up much faster than climate researchers expected, and now they think they know why: air made dramatically cleaner by anti-pollution programs. With less particle pollution clouding the air, more sunlight is coming through and the continent is getting warmer.
The 1970s were a hazy time: Cars ran on sulfur-rich gasoline, power plants and heavy industry burned sulfur-rich coal. Europe lay under a blanket of fumes filled with sulphate particles. Acid rain brought the particles back to earth, ravaging the continent's forests. That was then. The situation today is considerably different. Auto emissions are low in sulfur, power plants only run with smoke filters and acid rain is no longer an issue. But the success of efforts to restore Europe's air quality have had an unintended side effect that is just now coming to light. Because the atmosphere over Europe is increasingly clean, global warming is impacting the continent more quickly than other regions of the world.
The dwindling clouds of pollution are apparently the reason that Europe is heating faster than other mid-latitude regions. Since 1980, the average surface air temperature between the Bosporus and the Bay of Biscay has risen by almost an entire degree Celsius -- twice as much as expected. The reasons for this were until recently a matter of heated dispute. Greenhouse gases could explain half that increase, at best. But now climate researchers in Germany, Switzerland and the United States, using data and computer simulations, claim that the rise in temperatures has been caused most directly by a decline in sulfate aerosols in the atmosphere.
Sulfates work like a filter on sunlight: They reflect short-wave solar radiation back into space, thereby letting less energy pass into the layer of air closest to the ground. But because the concentration of sulfur particles is declining so rapidly, this unintended cooling effect no longer works the way it once did -- and Europe is getting hotter. To Martin Wild of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich (ETH Zurich), it makes perfect sense: "We have less aerosol in the atmosphere, more radiation reaching the surface of the Earth and an exorbitant increase in temperature."
At the annual conference of the European Geosciences Union (EGU), which begins on Tuesday in Vienna, climatologists and atmospheric researchers will discuss whether the trend will continue. As the air in developing regions like India and Central Africa get ever dirtier and the light penetrating the cloud of pollution dims, Europe is rapidly getting brighter.
Together with Joel Norris, an atmospheric scientist at the Scripps Institute of Oceanography in San Diego, Wild has been calculating fluctuations in European radiation levels. In the middle of the 1980s, there appears to have been a major shift. Until then, as the air became its most sulfur-laden, radiation near the surface reached all time lows of around three watts per square meter. Beginning in 1986, when efforts to clean the air began to pay off and the atmosphere became more transparent to sunlight, radiation started to increase about 2 watts per square meter in each year over the next decade.
Wild based his work on an aerosol-tracking computer simulation developed by researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology in Hamburg. "Extensive air pollution temporarily compensated for the global warming in Europe," said Johann Feichter, leader of the institute's Aerosol, Clouds and Climate working group.
Daddy's Little Climate Crusader
A reader writes:
I woke up to NPR this morning, like I usually do (don't hold it against me), and got to hear the story of Kelley Greenman. It was almost too much to stomach. Among the highlights:
- She is part of the youth delegation of the UN, which traveled to Bali to take part in a climate change conference, and accepted a satirical award on behalf of the United States for being obstructive to the talks. " 'Why should America have to do what the rest of the world is already doing?' she asked with a sly smile. 'It's not possible; we don't have the capabilities.' "
- Her father, a lawyer in Miami, quit his law firm and took the whole family backpacking around the world. Without irony she states how people around the world are less fortunate than her, as if every family in the U.S. could take off for six months and backpack around the world.
- She states her concerns with climate change are a "social justice" issue, noting that "People in other countries are being affected by largely the actions of developed nations and largely the U.S." She seems to think that poor nations would be happier if they were poor, but the temperature were cooler. Ironically, before this radio piece, NPR played another segment with the director of the World Health Program admitting the high cost of fuel and demand for biofuel are the largest factors affecting food prices. I guess she is one of the people in favor of your food tax.
-- She organizes teach-ins to "teach" children about climate change.
-- We learn that if more people were vegetarians, it would help more than if people stopped driving a car.
I know this type of stuff goes on all the time, but it summed up so many of the points you have been making, from journalism turning to activism instead of reporting, to the absolute ignorance of some people in the green movement - particularly the falsehood that the rest of the world is curbing emissions, while the U.S. does nothing.
Keep up the good work.
I think the best quote in the NPR story is this one: " 'I remember when I was 7 and my dad showed me the front page article of the Miami Herald about climate change. And it said something about how in 75 years . . . the world was going to end. Now I'm sure the Miami Herald didn't print that, but as a 7-year-old, that's what I understood and I just remember crying about it.' "
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