Post below recycled from The Register, an excellent British skeptical publication
The story is that the world is heating up - fast. Prominent people at NASA warn us that unless we change our carbon producing ways, civilisation as we know it will come to an end. At the same time, there are new scientific studies showing that the earth is in a 20 year long cooling period. Which view is correct? Temperature data should be simple enough to record and analyze. We all know how to read a thermometer - it is not rocket science.
Previously we looked at how US temperature data sets have been adjusted - with more recent versions of historical data sets showing a steeper rise in temperature than they used to. Here, we'll be looking at current NASA data and why their temperature maps appear hot-red, even when others are cool-blue.
To recap the earlier article, the graph below shows additional adjustments to the data set since the big "correction" in 2000.
We observe that the data has been consistently adjusted towards a bias of greater warming. The years prior to the 1970s have again been adjusted to lower temperatures, and recent years have been adjusted towards higher temperatures.
NASA's published data is largely based on data from the US Historical Climatology Network (USHCN), which derives its data from thermometer readings across the country. According to USHCN literature, the raw temperature data is adjusted to compensate for geographical movements in the weather stations, changes in the 24-hour start/end times when the readings are taken, and other factors. USHCN is directly affiliated with the Oak Ridge National Laboratories' Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center, an organisation which exists primarily to promote the idea of a link between CO2 and climate.
The map below shows what the raw unadjusted USHCN temperature trends for the US in the 20th century looked like.
20th century temperature trends - USHCN raw data (lots of blue)
Prior to any adjustments, more than half the US shows declining temperatures over the 20th century - blue and green colors - i.e. the US is cooling down. However, subsequent to the adjustments the country goes dominantly warmer (red and yellow) - as seen in the image below.
20th Century temperature trends - USHCN raw data (lots of red)
Below is a video showing the USHCN adjustments in action.
So how does NASA's data compare with other temperature sources? As we explained in our earlier article, NASA data is derived from a grid of ground-based thermometers. During the last thirty years, we also have the benefit of more sophisticated technology - satellites which can indirectly record temperatures across most of the planet. The satellite data is from Remote Sensing Systems (RSS) and the University of Alabama at Huntsville (UAH).
In 1998 (left side of the graph below) NASA and the satellite data sources RSS and UAH all agreed quite closely - within one-tenth of a degree. Ten years later - in March 2008 - NASA is reporting temperature anomalies more than 0.5 degrees warmer than UAH. The divergence between NASA and UAH has increased at a rate of 0.13 degrees per decade (red lines below.) In contrast, RSS has converged with UAH over the period and is now within 0.02 degrees (blue lines below.)
Differences between reported temperature anomalies, NASA, RSS and UAH - with UAH as the baseline.
The divergence is now quite striking. Looking closer at March 2008, NASA's data shows the month as the third warmest on record. In sharp contrast, UAH and RSS satellite data showed March as the second coldest on record in the southern hemisphere, and just barely above average for the whole planet. How could such a large discrepancy occur?
Viewing the NASA 250-mile map for March below, what immediately grabs the attention is that NASA has essentially no data (gray areas) in most of Canada, most of Africa, the Greenland ice sheet, and most of Antarctica. This begs the question, how can one calculate an accurate "global temperature" while lacking any data from large contiguous regions of three continents?
So what was NASA missing?
NASA Temperatures March, 2008 - 250-mile smoothing radius - looks hot
We can find NASA's lost continents in the UAH satellite data for March below.
UAH Satellite Temperatures March, 2008 - looks cool
Not surprisingly, the missing areas in Canada and Africa were cold. The NASA data thus becomes disproportionately weighted towards warm areas - particularly in the northern hemisphere. As can be seen in the UAH satellite map above, the warm areas actually made up a relatively small percentage of the planet. The vast majority of the earth had normal temperatures or below. Given that NASA has lost track of a number of large cold regions, it is understandable that their averages are on the high side.
Additionally, NASA reports their global temperature measurements within one one-hundredth of a degree. This is a classic mathematics error, since they have no data from 20 per cent of the earth's land area. The reported precision is much greater than the error bar - a mistake which has caused many a high school student to fail their exams.
A second important issue with NASA's presentation is that they use the time period of 1951-1980 as their choice of baseline. This was a well known cold spell, as can be seen in the 1999 version of the NASA US temperature graph below.
NASA US Temperature Map August, 1999. Note the cooling trend since 1930, and particularly between 1951 and 1980.
Temperatures dropped enough during that period to trigger concern about the onset of an ice age. Newsweek magazine went so far as to mention a proposed "solution" of spreading soot (http://www.denisdutton.com/cooling_world.htm) in the Arctic to melt the polar ice caps. 1978 was the coldest winter on record in much of North America. By using a cold baseline, all recent temperatures become relatively warm - which causes the NASA maps to be covered with lots of hot red and brown colors. From looking at the NASA map above, one could easily believe that that the earth is having a meltdown. By contrast, the UAH map makes most of the earth look quite cool.
When we look at the temperature data for Alaska, the disparity is again quite striking.
The NASA temperature map for March above shows Alaska temperatures much above "normal", while the UAH map shows Alaska temperatures well below "normal". This is partially due to the fact that the 1951-1980 NASA baseline period was unusually cold in Alaska - due to the cold phase of a dominant ocean cycle, the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO), as shown below. The graph below indicates variations in Pacific temperatures, showing a cold period from 1950-1980 which exactly matches NASA's baseline period.
The Pacific Decadal Oscillation in its cold phase from 1951-1980 (the period of the NASA baseline)p>
When the PDO ocean pattern is in its cold cycle, the Pacific remains dominantly in the La Nina phase, causing cold temperatures - particularly around the Pacific basin. La Nina also causes cold northern hemisphere winter temperatures across much of the world - as measured in 2008.
We can see how dramatic an artistic makeover can be. On the left, NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center shows that "the interior of Antarctica is generally cooling". Indeed, most of the landmass is cooler, or the same as it was, with patches of warming around the periphery.
On the right, NASA's Earth Observatory warns that "Between 1981 and 2007, most of Antarctica warmed" - and the graph is correspondingly crimson. For the colourists at the Earth Observatory, a mere +0.01C is needed to colour the continent red.
One month does not make a temperature trend, and the point of this article is not to ascertain whether or not the earth is warming towards Armageddon. We are not qualified to analyze that or second-guess the experts. What is being examined is the quality and stability of the data being used by people making those claims.
For example, whatever motivations NASA had for picking the 1951-1980 baseline undoubtedly have some valid scientific basis. Yet, when the data is calibrated in lockstep with a very high-profile and public political philosophy, we should at least be willing to ask some hard questions. Dr. James Hansen at GISS is the person in charge of the NASA temperature data. He is also the world's leading advocate of the idea of catastrophic global warming, and is Al Gore's primary climate advisor. The discrepancies between NASA and other data sources can't help but make us consider Einstein's advice:
"If the facts don't fit the theory, change the facts."
Excerpt only below:
No one doubts that the environment has been heating up; the controversy it has engendered has to do less with an indubitable fact than with isolating its supposed causes. The trouble is that the "science" involved is highly debatable insofar as it has been commandeered by a political crusade whose underlying purposes are distressingly suspicious. Some of the movement's proponents, to put it bluntly, are more concerned with saving their wilting careers than saving the planet; others are building new careers at the expense of public credulity, the perks and salaries being just too good to give up. We might note that Mars is also warming at present, though it seems there are no SUVs chugging along the planet's surface or light bulbs flicking on in its kilowatt communities. And not so long ago, we might recall, we were all getting ready to freeze: in 1971, the Global Ecology network forecast the "continued rapid cooling of the earth," and in 1975 the New York Times brooded that the earth "may be headed for another ice age," and in the July 1975 issue of National Wildlife, C.C. Wallen of the World Meteorological Organization warned that "the cooling since 1940 has been large enough and consistent enough that it will not soon be reversed."
Naturally, charges of fraud, incompetence and self-interest will fly Right and Left. Those who are resisting the official vogue will be suspected of ulterior purposes, as for example Canadian geographer/climatologist Timothy F. Ball whom the Calgary Herald, in a legal defence statement (filed December 7, 2006), viewed as "a paid promoter of the agenda of the oil and gas industry." (Ball had launched a libel suit against the Herald for printing a letter by Dan Johnson, a professor of Environmental Science at the University of Lethbridge, impugning Ball's credentials-a suit he later and rather suspiciously withdrew.)
But the argument can cut both ways. Thus William Gray, professor emeritus of the Atmosphere Department of Colorado State University, laments that "fellow scientists are not speaking out against something they know is wrong. But they also know that they'd never get any grants if they spoke out" (Investor's Business Daily, October 15, 2007). Gray has also shown that Al Gore's Exhibit A, hurricane intensity and frequency, plays fast and loose with the available data which imply the very opposite of his conclusions. ("There were 101 hurricanes from 1900 to 1949, in a period of cooler global temperature," Gray writes, "compared with 83 from 1957 to 2006.")
That Ball and Gore are both rather dubious characters suggests that neither side can claim total purity for all of its adherents, but this should not prevent us from trying to assess where the greater harm is done. We should also stay alert for purpose-built mendacity, as when ABC news reporter Dan Harris conducts a smear campaign against atmospheric physicist and Nobel Laureate Fred Singer, one of the world's most eminent scientists (ABC News, March 23, 2008). In seeking to rebut Singer's anti-alarmist position, Harris relies on the opinions of Singer's "fellow scientists," all unnamed (and whom Singer has offered to debate), and trots out the personal animadversions of Greenpeace eco-activist and "global warming specialist" Kert Davies who, as an Internet search reveals, appears to have no scientific qualifications.
As has been remarked more than once, the Global Warming Movement has filled the vacuum left by the flight of the Transcendent. Its high priests are Al Gore and David Suzuki, the former with a carbon footprint of Sasquatch proportions and the latter buying carbon credits-another swindle-to run his super sized tour bus. The Live Earth concerts sponsored by Gore and featuring celebrity performers whose greenhouse gas emissions rival their bombast in volume and output has provided the Rock liturgy for this quasi-religious movement. The hypocrisy of these new-age evangelists has been preserved in amber in Sinclair Lewis' Elmer Gantry. Interestingly, shortly before it was announced that Gore would be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, a UK court ruled that his global warming movie, An Inconvenient Truth, contained at least nine salient falsehoods, in particular with respect to his claim that Hurricane Katrina was caused by global warming, and that the film was little more than a form of "political indoctrination."
As we have seen, hurricane frequency is one of Gore's central arguments in prosecuting his case. He would have taken comfort in a later, supporting study sponsored by the University College of London (Nature, January 30, 2008). Unfortunately, as Steven Millroy, adjunct scholar at the Cato Institute, pointed out in an article in JunkScience.com (January 31, 2008), the researchers in question left out several important variables from their computer model, such as atmospheric humidity, sea-level pressure and long-range cycle activity, which severely damaged their thesis. The researchers themselves admitted that their analysis "does not identify whether greenhouse gas-induced warming contributed.to the increase in hurricane activity."
But the real nail in the coffin of the Gorean hypothesis comes from the hammer of the NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration), which published a study in Geophysical Research Letters (January 23, 2008) positing a recent decrease in such activity. Adding to Gore's embarrassment, the NOAA in its February report, relying on satellite data, showed that so-called "lost" ice had been restored to nearly its original levels, and a report in the London Daily Express (February 18, 2008) revealed that Antarctic levels had risen by a factor of one third.
The scientific consensus today is slowly beginning to shift away from the catastrophism of Gore, Suzuki and the United Nations IPCC's Fourth Assessment Report, to suggest that the human contribution to global warming is far less than originally assumed and that a meteorological calamity is highly unlikely. (The IPCC, which certified and entrenched the so-called "scientific consensus," is essentially a political body with an agenda of its own.) See Inhofe EPW Press Blog, Daily Tech online, and the journal Energy and Environment, whose findings are based on a survey of the ISI (Institute for Scientific Information) Web of Science database covering almost 9000 scientific publications.
Similarly, a study published in Nature (January 2, 2008), entitled "Vertical structure of recent Arctic warming," co-authored by Rune Graversen, Thorsten Mauritsen, Michael Tjernstr”m, Erland K„ll‚n and Gunilla Svenson of Stockholm University's Department of Meteorology, while not categorically ruling out human intervention in climate warming, places the emphasis elsewhere. In attempting to explain the phenomenon known as "Arctic amplification," the study cites "changes in oceanic atmospheric circulation" as one of the main drivers of observed temperature increases in the high North. In other words, periodic "atmospheric energy transport into the Arctic" from the equatorial latitudes, via currents and storms, "may be an important cause of the recent Arctic temperature amplification."
Other reports conclude that "solar variability" is the major component in climate change and will run its course regardless of human intervention. As David Douglass writes in the International Journal of Climatology of the Royal Meteorological Society (December 2007), in a peer-reviewed article co-authored with several prominent scientists, "The observed pattern of warming . . . does not show the characteristic fingerprint associated with greenhouse warming. The inescapable conclusion is that the human contribution is not significant and that observed increases in carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases make only a negligible contribution to climate warming." According to the aforementioned Fred Singer, co-author with Dennis Avery of Unstoppable Global Warming: Every 1,500 Years, who also contributed to the journal article, the effect of the terrestrial magnetic field is an equally important element. (Singer also indicates that "The ice sheets of Greenland have not melted in historic times at all, even though it was much warmer 1,000 years ago and very much warmer 5,000 years ago.") The Douglass study, which is as authoritative as it gets, concludes by rejecting "the proposition that greenhouse model simulations and trend observations can be reconciled."
The most sophisticated climate models indicate an undeniable discrepancy between surface and tropospheric temperature changes, which points to the sun as the primary agent in the long-term, fluctuating temperature curve. John Coleman, founder of the Weather Channel, patiently explains that the sun, which contains 99.8% of the mass of the solar system, in its hydrogen-fueled atomic fusion process, "consumes more mass in a second than all the fossil fuel ever burned on Earth," the terrestrial impact of which reduces the human input to global warming to a level of insignificance. Though Coleman doesn't cite actual figures, the fact is that the sun pours in excess of a million billion megawatt-hours annually on the earth. But he does quote the highly respected Australian mathematician and former carbon consultant for the Australian government, David Evans, who argues that "carbon emissions don't cause global warming." According to Evans, the IPCC models are wrong and the mathematics show that the human signature in the atmosphere is missing (KUSI News online, November 8, 2007).
Indeed, H. Sterling Burnett, a senior fellow at the nonprofit National Center for Policy Analysis, has shown that the famous "hockey stick" image used by the IPCC (also wielded by Gore) to support its conclusion about an unprecedented spike in global warming, is entirely flawed. The UN researchers "used the wrong time scale to establish the mean temperature to compare with recorded temperatures of the last century," which accounted for the sudden vertical shaft rising from the blade of the hockey stick.
Another recent NCPA study found that the ICPP violated 60 of the 127 principles governing prediction assessments and strictly followed only 17 of these forecasting principles (Washington Times, March 14, 2008). A panel of statisticians at George Mason University corroborated the NCPA results. Bjorn Lomborg's two books on the subject, The Skeptical Environmentalist and Cool It, although advancing an economic rather than purely scientific argument, are also needed correctives to current reflex thinking. For an equally refreshing perspective on these contentious issues, one might consult Daniel Botkin's Discordant Harmonies: A New Ecology for the Twenty-first Century. Botkin, whose work is predicated on separating soothsaying from science, is the former Chairman of Environmental Studies of the University of California at Santa Barbara and the current president of the Center for the Study of the Environment; his qualifications are impeccable.
The Keeling Curve, named after Charles David Keeling, a professor at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, measures the gradient levels of CO2 in the atmosphere from ice core samples. It has become the standard construct on which the Global Warming Movement relies. At the top of the graph representing the year 2002/3 we find a value of close to 380 molecules of CO2 per one million molecules of air, grossly insufficient to trigger the catastrophic effects of global warming that our climate zealots have been announcing. Scientists favourable to the thesis have had to fall back on the hypothesis of "CO2 forcing," or a chemical chain reaction producing a multiplier effect, to justify their projections.
It is precisely this theory that has come under fire and ultimately been dismissed as unconvincing by a growing number of cutting-edge scientists, mathematicians and climatologists, including those mentioned above as well as experts such as Lord Christopher Monckton who specializes in exploring scientific frauds and New Zealand climate researcher Vincent Gray who has been reviewing IPCC drafts from 1990 to the present. In addition, as Holly Fretwell, in an interview with the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review (January 19, 2008) indicates with respect to rising CO2 levels, "correlation is not causation."
Moreover, there is no reason to believe that CO2 is the causative agent in temperature change, she continues, since if we "look at the data that shows CO2 levels and temperature changes over the last 650,000 years, what we find is that temperature actually changes first and CO2 in the atmosphere follows.CO2 lags the temperature change." Her quip about forecasting is also well-taken. "Think about how well we are at predicting the weather tomorrow or next week and now try to extend that out 100 years. We really are no better at predicting long-term climate change than we are at predicting short-term climate . . . " Tim Patterson, director of the Ottawa-Carleton Geoscience Center, concurs: "C02 variations show little correlation with out planet's climate on long, medium and even short time scales." But he and his team have found "excellent correlations between the regular fluctuations of the sun and earthly climate" (Financial Post, June 20, 2007).
The US Climate Change Science Program introduces an equally sober note into the current hysteria over global warming. Its 2004-2005 report asserts that the droughts of 1998-2002 "were part of a persistent climate state that was strongly influenced by.unusually cold sea surface temperatures in the eastern tropical Pacific." It goes on to isolate other influences for observed differences in temperature readings, including a "natural weather pattern called the North Atlantic Oscillation/Northern Annular Mode." Anthropogenic forcing is only one determinant in the complex dynamic of weather patterns, one that is yet far from being properly understood. And there is still, the report makes clear, a "large uncertainty about the precise effects of aerosols on Earth's radiation balance." ....
The Lies and Myths of the "Anthropogenic Global Warming" Fear Mongers and the Dire Threat They Pose
The American people are constantly being bombarded more and more with piffle and drivel from the lunatic fringe of the "Greens" movement. Organizations with their own political, social, and economic agendas, like the IPCC and the UN General Assembly present themselves as clearing houses for "scientific information" while placing their own philosophical brand on the findings they report. The proponents of the "doom and gloom" scenario of man-made, or anthropogenic, global warming (AGW) tend to fall into easily recognizable categories:
1. Climatologists and other scientists whose livelihoods depend on the perpetuation of the theory that: a. The planet is warming up, and b. That man's activities are the primary driving force behind such a change.
2. Computer modelers who take current data and construct mathematical models which they then use to confirm their already drawn conclusions about the origin and ultimate results of global warming.
3. Members of organizations (generally, but not exclusively found on the extreme left-wing of the political spectrum) like the Greens Party, the Sierra Club, and other environmental wacko groups who believe that mankind (and especially American mankind) is basically a toxic presence which infects the planet and that the planet would be better off without him.
4. Naive, well intentioned do-gooders who lack the intellect or knowledge to penetrate the fog of jargon with which the global warming alarmists camouflage their intentions and to critically examine the weak, faux science now being presented as fact.
5. Leftists who understand global warming as the scam is, but see in it, through their cynical, Machiavellian eyes, a useful tool to further government control over the economy and the people.
6. The average citizen who lack the time, knowledge, or inclination to learn the truth about AGW and the aims of its proponents and who fall victim to the massive propaganda machine in the Leftist controlled mainstream media that tells them tales of a "grim reality" rapidly approaching which can only be prevented by taking draconian measures.IMMEDIATELY!
There have been innumerable "doom and gloom" cults throughout history, but never before have they had such a powerful propaganda weapon as the mass communications apparatus now in place.
That propaganda machine has already catapulted Albert Gore, Jr. from Clinton court jester to superstar status (with commensurate income) and has rendered him immune to cries against his hypocrisy, by excusing his massive "carbon foot print" (as well as those of other celebrity alarmists) as being an unfortunate side effect of the obligation he has to spread the gospel.
Al Gore, the man who flunked out of Divinity School, is presented as an expert in AGW. If he says it, we are to believe it without question. In fact Barbara Boxer quoted Al Gore, Jr. as one of her unimpeachable sources influencing the design of her global warming substitute amendment, a massive government takeover of the American economy.
Al Gore tells us that human generated CO2 is causing global warming and he uses charts derived from ice-core samples to prove it.he even shows us a huge blown up image of a graph of that ice-core data.nevermind that he misrepresents what those data tell us, we must believe him. Al Gore is the new messiah of the global warming movement. What a joke!
We already know, through a close examination of those same data, that increases in CO2 levels lag behind increases of global temperatures by 800 years, not precede it. They occur as a result of increased temperatures and have no causative effect whatsoever.
If, as enviro-mental wackos and their naive adherents claim, solar, gravitational, and geophysical effects contribute only a small percentage to the phenomenon of global warming and the accumulation of CO2 (caused by "evil" man) in the atmosphere is the primary causative factor, then there would be little evidence of massive climatological changes occurring on other planets, but there is.
"Long-time greens" (as at least one has presented himself to me), are so twisted in their thinking that they view mankind as (to quote from the movie Matrix) "a virus" which infects our planet. They willingly adhere to any theory which predicts the imminent destruction of mankind in a sort of convulsive purging of itself by Mother Earth which they believe is a living organism called Gaia (didn't Bluebonnet or Parkay already do an ad about that?). "It's not nice to fool Mother Nature."
The fact that these consummate "neo-Malthusians" are invariably and repeatedly proven wrong by science and by the continued stubbornness of mankind in refusing to "go quietly into that good night," deters them not one whit. Apparently reality impinges but little into their world.
Global warming has already stalled for the past decade and last year was the coldest in a decade. According to the geological record, we are not even close to the warmest temperatures Earth has seen over the past few hundred-thousand years. In past interglacials, temperatures rose considerably higher than they have in the current inter-glacial.and yes we are still in the midst of an inter-glacial, so periods of warming are to be expected. If these facts elude you, try reading some works of genuine science instead of these politically motivated diatribes written by people with a social agenda.
One of the more recent observations to send a tremor of fear through the global warming alarmists, is a report that subsurface ocean temperatures, as directly measured by over 3000 robotic probes have shown no rise in global oceanic temperatures. In fact those same probes have shown a small but statistically significant decrease in subsurface oceanic temperatures. These results were so unexpected that, even now, the little Gorebots are scrambling to alter their models to account for what simply have to be anomalous data.
It is an immutable truth about Liberal dogma that, as they are proven wrong in their pet theories, the tenor of the conversation (such as there is) approaches hysteria. The level of hyperbole and the number of predictions of "doom and gloom" rise. The fevered pitch of the comments coming from those alarmists and the more and more dire predictions of our approaching demise, serve only to prove their desperation as once more one of their pet theories falls onto the ash-heap of history.
AGW is yesterday's news and over the next 10-20 years, people in these organizations will be warning us, once again, of an impending ice-age or some other dire prediction, with the requisite imminent end of civilization as we know it.
I am not a part of the "pro-carbon" lobby, I am a part of the pro-science, pro-reality lobby, a voice of sanity standing in defiance of the raging tide of alarmism emanating from the Left. I am a green's worst nightmare, a Conservative with a strong knowledge of science and the ability to know Leftist BS when I see it. I am far from being alone. Most individuals of good common sense (mostly Conservatives) see AGW for the con-game it is. The arguments, as put forward by AGW alarmist, offer neither compelling scientific nor logical reasons to react impulsively to each spate of tornadic activity reported on the evening news.
The most compelling scientific evidence and arguments rest with AGW deniers like me. It is individuals such as those I have described above who, through their blind following of false profits of doom like Rachel Carson (author of one of the deadliest lies in history, the book "Silent Spring") and Albert Gore, Jr, represent the most pressing danger to the world's population.
Rachel Carson (after Hitler, Stalin, Mao, and the 1973 Supreme Court through its ruling in Roe v. Wade) is the greatest mass murderer of the 20th century. She and her gullible little army of adherents are responsible for the deaths of millions of Africans from malaria. By demanding and achieving the a ban on the manufacture, distribution and use of DDT, one of the most innocuous chemicals ever invented by mankind, they have caused unimaginable suffering by those in developing nations.
That book and the "science" upon which it was based is one of the most horrendous (in consequences) mistakes of the faux scientists in the green movement. Her theories were flawed and the science upon which they were based was bad and, in spite of her full knowledge of this prior to the precipitous actions her work generated, she persisted in her campaign. The story of Rachel Carson and her egregious error of arrogance should be an object lesson for all who now heed the siren call of the greens in this AGW campaign, but that same arrogance, the arrogance inherent in the Left, will prevent them from paying attention.
AGW is a monstrous scam and any action taken by congress or any government will most certainly have grim unintended consequences, just as all poorly thought out and ill-conceived laws have, throughout our nation's history.
Global Warming: A Socialist Perspective
Good to see skepticism coming from the Left. Small excerpt only below:
From the science it is impossible for CO2 to heat the planet to anything like the temperatures discussed either by the IPCC (1.5-4.5oC) or the 7-8oC touted by some of the extreme environmentalists. Nor is there any basis for stating, as did a recent article in Socialist Appeal (and Marxist.com) "that the greenhouse gas effect is up 20 percent since 1990". Since the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere in 1990 was 342 ppm and it is now 383 ppm then the increase is in fact 12%. However if we talk of "the effect" then we have to deal with real world effects of CO2 as an absorbing and re-radiating greenhouse gas. The primary green house gas is water vapour that accounts for 95% of the greenhouse effect. The contribution of CO2 to the warming of the world is logarithmic in nature as shown by Figure 9. That's the science.
In other words increasing concentrations of CO2 have a diminishing effect on the globe's temperature. So to get to the scary numbers postulated by the IPCC, (never mind some environmentalists or Socialist Appeal), a magic multiplier effect has to be employed. Doubling of CO2 concentrations to 560 ppm will achieve a 2 Watts/sq metre increase in radiative forcing, and result in an IPCC guesstimated range of 1-2oK, compared with the maximum postulated from the science of 0.87oK. And that is the official position. What would 2 degrees rise in Greenland's temperature effect in 70 years time? The union position comes to mind - 20% of bugger all is still bugger all!
But that is not the point of the scary scenarios. For that we have to go to Dr Stephen Schneider who is a senior staff member at the National Centre for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), Boulder, Colorado. He stated that: "To capture the public imagination, we have to offer up some scary scenarios, make simplified dramatic statements and little mention of any doubts one might have. Each of us has to decide the right balance between being effective, and being honest." So much for science!!
Of course he was not always a global warmist. Before Global Warming became the politically correct scientific fashion of the 1990s, the reverse situation existed in the 1970s, where it had become a scientific article of faith that the Ice Age was about to happen. Even the US National Academy of Sciences adopted this view in 1970: "There is a finite possibility that a serious worldwide cooling could befall the Earth within the next 100 years."
Schneider wrote paper after paper describing the inevitability of the coming ice age. He once joked that since Greenhouse had hit the public arena, he had become more of a politician than a scientist!! Wouldn't it be nice if they just explained their political agenda that they have, rather than hide behind the "science".
Polar Bear shot due to 'thick pack' not 'seen for decades' & bitter cold
A polar bear that showed up in Iceland, presumably after drifting on ice flowing south from Greenland this spring, was shot and killed by a team led by police officers on the ground that it posed a threat to people. This has happened before, the last time in 1993, according to Icelandic and British news reports, which said there were records of polar bears in the country back to the year 890. There is some pretty gruesome video (warning to parents) of the polar bear's death, which Icelandic officials said was necessary because no one had the appropriate tranquilizer:
The bigger story in the bear's journey is that it may have been facilitated by the unusual abundance of pack ice between Greenland and Iceland this spring. In April, a story in The Guardian essentially predicted that this might happen. Here's how Grethin Chamberlain put it (talk about prescience):
The oceans may be warming and air temperatures rising, but in recent days Iceland has bucked the global climate trend. Thick pack ice, the like of which has not been seen for decades, stretched into the western fjords as temperatures plummeted and a bitter wind blew in from Greenland. The ice has proved a headache for fishermen, who have been unable to put to sea, but it is what comes with pack ice that has caused most concern: polar bears.
People living around the fjord of Dyrafjordur, which last week was almost filled with the ice, were keeping an eye on the sea, conscious that the bears live on the pack ice that covers much of the Arctic ocean. When chunks break off, as appears to have happened last week, the bears become stranded, drifting wherever the ice takes them.
Whatever led it there, there's plenty of bitterness in Iceland over the shooting, which many locals say was unnecessary. As for the ice, I've sent some queries to experts.
The invisible critics of global warming
By Andrew Bolt, writing from Australia
The boys from the ABC's Chaser [a satirical programme on public TV] show a map of Australia in their new show at the Athenaeum with a pink dot to indicate the whereabouts of our very last global warming sceptic. Actually, there's just a single pink dot in that entire expanse, and it's plonked right over Melbourne. Over this tower with Herald Sun on top, in fact. To be absolutely specific, it's over this very chair in which I'm now sitting, typing furiously with a mad cackle and hair all wild.
This is chuffy news, and I yesterday asked Julian and the guys to send me a copy of their Power Point presentation as soon as they're through with it. I figure it will give me terrific bragging rights in a decade, or probably much sooner, when suddenly the landscape will be crowded with experts who've sprung like instant weeds after drought-busting rains to say, ahem, they never fell for this scare either. They'd warned all along it would end in tears of laughter. But I'll expose those fair-weather pundits. I'll drag out the Chaser's map and say: Hah! Where's your pink dot?
But I'm fantasising. I know the glory isn't mine alone. The country has mysteriously turned out to be filled with sceptics already, and the real marvel is why the Chaser and its braying audience can't see them. It's as if hundreds of thousands of people, some of them prominent scientists, are made of glass and cannot be detected by an ABC-trained eye. Nor can even the noisiest of them be heard by an ABC ear - or the ear of almost anyone in the media.
Take Dennis Jensen, for instance. This federal Liberal MP, who has a PhD in physics, gave a speech in Parliament outlining the latest scientific evidence that the world stopped warming a decade ago. He had charts from the four international bodies that measure world temperature, including Britain's Hadley Centre, showing that since 1998 world temperatures have stayed flat, contradicting all official predictions. And he warned: "This data shows that the temperature has flatlined over the last 10 years. "Observation does not fit theory and yet the theory is deemed correct."
You'd think evidence that the world may no longer be heating - indeed, say some sun-studying scientists, may even start cooling - might be of interest to reporters, given our governments are spending billions to pretend to stop a warming that may not be happening, and may not be our fault. Or even bad. Yet not a single newspaper or television report mentioned Jensen's speech. He was so invisible that there's no pink dot for him on the Chaser map.
In the two days since Jensen spoke, the evidence he's right has firmed. Now the University of Alabama in Huntsville, one of those four temperature monitors, has found that the temperature of the lower troposphere has cooled more in the past 16 months than it warmed in the previous 100 years. A blip, maybe, but unexpected.
And, with satellites and weather balloons not detecting any warming of the troposphere in tropical regions, again contradicting the predictions of every global warming model, it's no wonder 31,000 scientists, including Australia's Prof Bob Carter, last month signed a petition declaring there was still no proof humans were warming the world to hell. But Carter is also so invisible that there's no pink dot for him, either.
Nor are there pink dots for the several Rudd ministers and parliamentary secretaries who, like some senior Liberal frontbenchers, admit they doubt man is heating the world to Armageddon, either. Not that these heroes deserve to be dotted, since they keep so schtum in public.
Yet why not a pink dot for, say, Michael Costa, the NSW Treasurer? Here's a man who makes news every time he opens his noisy mouth, except when he croaks "global warming is a crock". Then he can't be heard, or not so clearly that the Chaser will dot him.
In fact, the whole country has just gone dotty without the Chaser managing to notice. If we really do think man's gases are cooking the world into a stew we must, of course, stop using all this petrol, and all this cheap but very gassy coal-fired electricity. And at first both the Liberals and Labor thought we indeed wanted to do just that. That's why both went to the last election promising to bring in an emissions trading scheme, to whack up the prices of gassy things so high that we'd use something else.
Kevin Rudd's climate guru, Ross Garnaut, for instance, cheerily recommended we pay more for petrol - maybe 20 cents a litre at least - so we'd drive solar-powered shoes instead, or cars run on mung beans. But, oops. Fact is, voters now confess they're actually so mad about prices at the bowser that hang global warming: they'd rather save petrol money instead.
Shocked, the Government is now backpedalling fast, promising now not a planet-saving 20-cent-a-litre green tax (sshhh!), but a vote-saving cent-a-litre FuelWatch saving instead. And maybe even a cut in the GST on petrol. The Liberals are offering even more - a five-cents-a-litre cut in excise - and they add that they sure won't include petrol in their emissions trading scheme. Save the planet from warming? Are you crazy?
So hand the pink dots around, and I urge you all to wear them with pride. Do not be ashamed to be dotty, because global warming is a faith that even its loudest preachers seem not quite to believe. Do you think Al Gore really believes the gassy doom he predicts in An Inconvenient Truth? Then why does he use in just one of his three homes 20 times more power than the average American family uses in a year? Dot him.
Do you think golfer Greg Norman really thinks global warming is such a menace that this is why he's told staff they must fly "carbon neutral on their Qantas flights"? Then why does he offset his own air travel not by planting trees for the planet, but by asking his ex-wife to pay half his $17 million tax bill on his private jet? Dot him, too.
And do you think Virgin boss Sir Richard Branson really means it when he warns "the clock is ticking" on our warming doom? Then why did he use a private chopper this year to drop into Brisbane to chat about his latest gassy whiz - selling joyrides into space?
Come on. Who really believes this global warming faith, when it's high priests include Sir Richard Brazen? It's a creed preached by sinners to the insincere. So let the Chaser strike us all pink - such a healthy colour, after all. But first feed my ego, boys. Print me off a copy of your map
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