Scientists Continue to Debunk "Consensus" in 2008 & 2009
Over 700 dissenting scientists (updates previous 650 report) from around the globe challenged man-made global warming claims made by the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and former Vice President Al Gore. This new 2009 255-page U.S. Senate Minority Report -- updated from 2007's groundbreaking report of over 400 scientists who voiced skepticism about the so-called global warming "consensus" -- features the skeptical voices of over 700 prominent international scientists, including many current and former UN IPCC scientists, who have now turned against the UN IPCC.
This updated report includes an additional 300 (and growing) scientists and climate researchers since the initial release in December 2007. The over 700 dissenting scientists are more than 13 times the number of UN scientists (52) who authored the media-hyped IPCC 2007 Summary for Policymakers. The chorus of skeptical scientific voices grow louder in 2008 and 2009 as a steady stream of peer-reviewed studies, analyses, real world data and inconvenient developments challenged the UN's and former Vice President Al Gore's claims that the "science is settled" and there is a "consensus."
On a range of issues, 2008 and 2009 proved to be challenging for the promoters of man-made climate fears. Promoters of anthropogenic warming fears endured the following:
Global temperatures failing to warm;
Peer-reviewed studies predicting a continued lack of warming;
a failed attempt to revive the discredited "Hockey Stick";
inconvenient developments and studies regarding rising CO2; the Sun; Clouds; Antarctica; the Arctic; Greenland's ice; Mount Kilimanjaro; Causes of Hurricanes; Extreme Storms; Extinctions; Floods; Droughts; Ocean Acidification; Polar Bears; Extreme weather deaths; Frogs; lack of atmospheric dust; Malaria; the failure of oceans to warm and rise as predicted.
In addition, the following developments further secured 2008 and 2009 as the year the "consensus" collapsed.
Russian scientists "rejected the very idea that carbon dioxide may be responsible for global warming".
An American Physical Society editor conceded that a "considerable presence" of scientific skeptics exists.
An International team of scientists countered the UN IPCC, declaring: "Nature, Not Human Activity, Rules the Climate".
India Issued a report challenging global warming fears.
International Scientists demanded the UN IPCC "be called to account and cease its deceptive practices," and a canvass of more than 51,000 Canadian scientists revealed 68% disagree that global warming science is "settled."
A Japan Geoscience Union symposium survey in 2008 "showed 90 per cent of the participants do not believe the IPCC report."
This new report issued by the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee's office of the GOP Ranking Member is the latest evidence of the growing groundswell of scientific opposition challenging significant aspects of the claims of the UN IPCC and Al Gore. Scientific meetings are now being dominated by a growing number of skeptical scientists. The prestigious International Geological Congress, dubbed the geologists' equivalent of the Olympic Games, was held in Norway in August 2008 and prominently featured the voices of scientists skeptical of man-made global warming fears.
Even the mainstream media has begun to take notice of the expanding number of scientists serving as "consensus busters." A November 25, 2008, article in Politico noted that a "growing accumulation" of science is challenging warming fears, and added that the "science behind global warming may still be too shaky to warrant cap-and-trade legislation."
Canada's National Post noted on October 20, 2008, that "the number of climate change skeptics is growing rapidly."
New York Times environmental reporter Andrew Revkin noted on March 6, 2008, "As we all know, climate science is not a numbers game (there are heaps of signed statements by folks with advanced degrees on all sides of this issue)," Revkin wrote.
In 2007, Washington Post Staff Writer Juliet Eilperin conceded the obvious, writing that climate skeptics "appear to be expanding rather than shrinking."
Skeptical scientists are gaining recognition despite what many say is a bias against them in parts of the scientific community and are facing significant funding disadvantages.
Dr. William M. Briggs, a climate statistician who serves on the American Meteorological Society's Probability and Statistics Committee, explained that his colleagues described "absolute horror stories of what happened to them when they tried getting papers published that explored non-`consensus' views." In a March 4, 2008, report Briggs described the behavior as "really outrageous and unethical... on the parts of some editors... I was shocked."
Highlights of the Updated 2009 Senate Minority Report featuring over 700 international scientists dissenting from man-made climate fears:
"I am a skeptic.Global warming has become a new religion." - Nobel Prize Winner for Physics, Ivar Giaever.
"Since I am no longer affiliated with any organization nor receiving any funding, I can speak quite frankly..As a scientist I remain skeptical...The main basis of the claim that man's release of greenhouse gases is the cause of the warming is based almost entirely upon climate models. We all know the frailty of models concerning the air-surface system." - Atmospheric Scientist Dr. Joanne Simpson, the first woman in the world to 4 receive a PhD in meteorology, and formerly of NASA, who has authored more than 190 studies and has been called "among the most preeminent scientists of the last 100 years."
Warming fears are the "worst scientific scandal in the history. When people come to know what the truth is, they will feel deceived by science and scientists." - UN IPCC Japanese Scientist Dr. Kiminori Itoh, an award-winning PhD environmental physical chemist.
"The IPCC has actually become a closed circuit; it doesn't listen to others. It doesn't have open minds. I am really amazed that the Nobel Peace Prize has been given on scientifically incorrect conclusions by people who are not geologists." - Indian geologist Dr. Arun D. Ahluwalia at Punjab University and a board member of the UN-supported International Year of the Planet.
"So far, real measurements give no ground for concern about a catastrophic future warming." - Scientist Dr. Jarl R. Ahlbeck, a chemical engineer at Abo Akademi University in Finland, author of 200 scientific publications and former Greenpeace member.
"Anyone who claims that the debate is over and the conclusions are firm has a fundamentally unscientific approach to one of the most momentous issues of our time." - Solar physicist Dr. Pal Brekke, senior advisor to the Norwegian Space Centre in Oslo. Brekke has published more than 40 peer-reviewed scientific articles on the sun and solar interaction with the Earth.
"The models and forecasts of the UN IPCC "are incorrect because they only are based on mathematical models and presented results at scenarios that do not include, for example, solar activity." - Victor Manuel Velasco Herrera, a researcher at the Institute of Geophysics of the National Autonomous University of Mexico
"It is a blatant lie put forth in the media that makes it seem there is only a fringe of scientists who don't buy into anthropogenic global warming." - U.S Government Atmospheric Scientist Stanley B. Goldenberg of the Hurricane Research Division of NOAA.
"Even doubling or tripling the amount of carbon dioxide will virtually have little impact, as water vapour and water condensed on particles as clouds dominate the worldwide scene and always will." - . Geoffrey G. Duffy, a professor in the Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering of the University of Auckland, NZ.
"I am convinced that the current alarm over carbon dioxide is mistaken...Fears about man-made global warming are unwarranted and are not based on good science." - Award Winning Physicist Dr. Will Happer, Professor at the Department of Physics at Princeton University and Former Director of Energy Research at the Department of Energy, who has published over 200 scientific papers, and is a fellow of the American Physical Society, The American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the National Academy of Sciences.
"Nature's regulatory instrument is water vapor: more carbon dioxide leads to less moisture in the air, keeping the overall GHG content in accord with the necessary balance conditions." - Prominent Hungarian Physicist and environmental researcher Dr. Miklos Zagoni reversed his view of man-made warming and is now a skeptic. Zagoni was once Hungary's most outspoken supporter of the Kyoto Protocol.
"For how many years must the planet cool before we begin to understand that the planet is not warming? For how many years must cooling go on?" - Geologist Dr. David Gee the chairman of the science committee of the 2008 International Geological Congress who has authored 130 plus peer reviewed papers, and is currently at Uppsala University in Sweden.
"Gore prompted me to start delving into the science again and I quickly found myself solidly in the skeptic camp. Climate models can at best be useful for explaining climate changes after the fact." - Meteorologist Hajo Smit of Holland, who reversed his belief in man-made warming to become a skeptic, is a former member of the Dutch UN IPCC committee.
"The quantity of CO2 we produce is insignificant in terms of the natural circulation between air, water and soil... I am doing a detailed assessment of the UN IPCC reports and the Summaries for Policy Makers, identifying the way in which the Summaries have distorted the science." - South Afican Nuclear Physicist and Chemical Engineer Dr. Philip Lloyd, a UN IPCC co-coordinating lead author who has authored over 150 refereed publications.
"Many [scientists] are now searching for a way to back out quietly (from promoting warming fears), without having their professional careers ruined." - Atmospheric physicist James A. Peden, formerly of the Space Research and Coordination Center in Pittsburgh.
"All those urging action to curb global warming need to take off the blinkers and give some thought to what we should do if we are facing global cooling instead." - Geophysicist Dr. Phil Chapman, an astronautical engineer and former NASA astronaut, served as staff physicist at MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)
Much more HERE
CLIMATE CHANGE RECONSIDERED
An important event in the global warming debate occurred this week, with the release of Climate Change Reconsidered, an 880-page book produced by the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change. Climate Change Reconsidered is authored by Dr. Fred Singer and Dr. Craig Idso, with 35 additional contributors. The purpose of the book is to "present an authoritative and detailed rebuttal of the findings of the United Nations' Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), on which the Obama Administration and Democrats in Congress rely for their regulatory proposals." You can download it in its entirety at the linked site.
At the highest level, these are the conclusions of Climate Change Reconsidered:
The scholarship in this book demonstrates overwhelming scientific support for the position that the warming of the twentieth century was moderate and not unprecedented, that its impact on human health and wildlife was positive, and that carbon dioxide probably is not the driving factor behind climate change.
The authors cite thousands of peer-reviewed research papers and books that were ignored by the IPCC, plus additional scientific research that became available after the IPCC's self-imposed deadline of May 2006.
The book is replete with detailed statistical data and arguments of the sort that global warming alarmists refuse to engage in. It contains far too much data to summarize, but here are the "key findings" in Chapter 3, titled "Observations: Temperature Records."
* The IPCC claims to find evidence in temperature records that the warming of the twentieth century was "unprecedented" and more rapid than during any previous period in the past 1,300 years. But the evidence it cites, including the "hockey-stick" representation of earth's temperature record by Mann et al., has been discredited and contradicted by many independent scholars.
* A corrected temperature record shows temperatures around the world were warmer during the Medieval Warm Period of approximately 1,000 years ago than they are today, and have averaged 2-3ºF warmer than today's temperatures over the past 10,000 years.
* Evidence of a global Medieval Warm Period is extensive and irrefutable. Scientists working with a variety of independent methodologies have found it in proxy records from Africa, Antarctica, the Arctic, Asia, Europe, North America, and South America.
* The IPCC cites as evidence of modern global warming data from surface-based recording stations yielding a 1905-2005 temperature increase of 0.74ºC +/- 0.18ºC. But this temperature record is known to be positively biased by insufficient corrections for the non-greenhouse-gas-induced urban heat island (UHI) effect. It may be impossible to make proper corrections for this deficiency, as the UHI of even small towns dwarfs any concomitant augmented greenhouse effect that may be present.
* Highly accurate satellite data, adjusted for orbit drift and other factors, show a much more modest warming trend in the last two decades of the twentieth century and a dramatic decline in the warming trend in the first decade of the twenty-first century.
* The "fingerprint" or pattern of warming observed in the twentieth century differs from the pattern predicted by global climate models designed to simulate CO2-induced global warming. Evidence reported by the U.S. Climate Change Science Program (CCSP) is unequivocal: All greenhouse models show an increasing warming trend with altitude in the tropics, peaking around 10 km at roughly twice the surface value. However, the temperature data from balloons give the opposite result: no increasing warming, but rather a slight cooling with altitude.
* Temperature records in Greenland and other Arctic areas reveal that temperatures reached a maximum around 1930 and have decreased in recent decades. Longer-term studies depict oscillatory cooling since the Climatic Optimum of the mid-Holocene (~9000-5000 years BP), when it was perhaps 2.5º C warmer than it is now.
* The average temperature history of Antarctica provides no evidence of twentieth century warming. While the Antarctic peninsula shows recent warming, several research teams have documented a cooling trend for the interior of the continent since the 1970s.
If you want to inform yourself about the global warming debate, there is no better place to begin.
'Worse Than Fiction'
From the WSJ:
Global warming alarmists are fond of invoking the authority of experts against the skepticism of supposedly amateur detractors -- a.k.a. "deniers." So when one of those experts says that a recent report on the effects of climate change is "worse than fiction, it is a lie," the alarmists should, well, be alarmed.
The latest contretemps pits former U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan, now president of the Geneva-based Global Humanitarian Forum, against Roger Pielke, Jr., an expert in disaster trends at the University of Colorado. Mr. Annan's outfit issued a lengthy report late last month warning that climate change-induced disasters, such as droughts and floods, kill 315,000 each year and cost $125 billion, numbers it says will rise to 500,000 dead and $340 billion by 2030. Adding to the gloom, Mr. Annan predicts "mass starvation, mass migration, and mass sickness" unless countries agree to "the most ambitious international agreement ever negotiated" at a meeting this year in Copenhagen.
Even on its own terms, the numbers here are a lot less scary when put into context. Malaria kills an estimated one million people a year, while AIDS claims an estimated two million. As for the economic costs, $125 billion is slightly less than the GDP of New Zealand. Question: Are targeted campaigns using proven methods to spare the world three million AIDS and malaria deaths a year a better use of scarce resources than a multitrillion-dollar attempt to re-engineer the global economy and save, at most, a tenth that number? We'd say yes.
But the Annan report deserves even closer scrutiny as an example of the sleight of hand that so often goes with the politics of global warming. Unlike starvation, climate change does not usually kill anyone directly. Instead, the study's authors assume a four-step chain of causation, beginning with increased emissions, moving to climate-change effects, thence to physical changes like melting glaciers and desertification, and finally arriving at human effects like malnutrition and "risk of instability and armed conflicts."
This is a heroic set of assumptions, even if you agree that emissions are causing adverse changes in climate. Take the supposedly heightened risk of conflict: The authors suggest that "inter-clan fighting in Somalia" is a product of climate change. A likelier explanation is the collapse of a functioning Somali government and the rise of jihadists in the region.
Enter Mr. Pielke, who, we hasten to add, does not speak for us (nor we for him). But given the headlines the Annan report has garnered, his views deserve amplification. Writing in the Prometheus science policy blog, Mr. Pielke calls the report a "methodological embarrassment" and a "poster child for how to lie with statistics" that "does a disservice" to those who take climate change issues seriously.
Mr. Pielke's critique begins by citing a recent peer-reviewed paper by three German researchers that "it is generally difficult to obtain valid quantitative findings about the role of socioeconomics and climate change in loss increases." Reasons for this, the researchers explain, include "the stochastic [random] nature of weather extremes, a shortage of quality data, and the role of various other potential factors that act in parallel and interact."
The report does admit to a "significant margin of error," but this hardly excuses the sloppiness of its methodology. "To get around the fact that there has been no attribution of the relationship of GHG [greenhouse gas] emissions and disasters," Mr. Pielke notes, the Annan "report engages in a very strange comparison of earthquake and weather disasters in 1980 and 2005. The first question that comes to mind is, why? They are comparing phenomena with many 'moving parts' over a short time frame, and attributing 100% of the resulting difference to human-caused climate change. This boggles the mind."
It gets worse. The Annan report cites Hurricane Katrina as a case study in the economic consequences of climate change. Yet there's not even remotely conclusive evidence that temperature increases have any effect on the intensity or frequency of hurricanes. The authors also claim that global warming is aggravating the El Niño effect, which has "ruined livelihoods, led to lost lives and impaired national economies." Yet new research "questions the notion that El Niños have been getting stronger because of global warming," according to Ben Giese of Texas A&M.
We could go on, except we're worried about the blood pressure of readers who are climate-change true believers. Our only question is, if the case for global warming is so open and shut, why the need for a report as disingenuous as Mr. Annan's?
Waxman-Markey Whacks Industry
The so-called Waxman-Markey bill snaking its way through the greasy halls of Congress looks likes the most expensive thing to hit the economy since the financial crisis began. Even the normally mild-mannered Wall Street Journal called it “one of the most ambitious efforts to re-engineer American social and economic behavior in decades, presenting risks and opportunities for a wide array of businesses from Silicon Valley to the coal fields of the Appalachians.”
First off, the stated objective of cutting carbon emissions by 83% by 2050 will go down in history as outrageous – akin to when Who drummer Keith Moon drove his Lincoln Continental into the pool at the Holiday Inn. I think members of Congress must be smoking the same thing Moon was.
To show you how patently ridiculous such a goal is, I turn to Questar’s CEO – a man with the unfortunate name of Keith Rattie. Questar is an oil and gas company. Rattie is an engineer. He has been in the business since the 1970s. He walks us through the basic math in a speech he made at Utah Valley University on April 2 called “Energy Myths and Realities.” Rattie uses Utah as an example:
“Utah’s carbon footprint today is about 66 million tons per year. Our population is 2.6 million. You divide those two numbers and the average Utahan today has a carbon footprint of about 25 tons per year. An 80% reduction in Utah’s carbon footprint by 2050 implies 66 million tons today to about 13 million tons per year by 2050. If Utah’s population continues to grow at 2% per year, by 2050, there will be about 6 million people living in our state. So 13 million tons divided by 6 million people equals 2.2 tons per person per year.
“Question: When was the last time Utah’s carbon footprint was as low as 2.2 tons per person? Answer: Not since Brigham Young and the Mormon pioneers first entered the Wasatch Valley and declared, ‘This is the place.’”
You can extend this math over the whole country – a growing mass of 300 million people. To meet the Waxman-Markey bill’s goals would mean we have to go back to a carbon footprint about as big as the Pilgrims’ at Plymouth Rock circa 1620.
So I think the bill is absurd. I think it is also a great blow to what is left of American industry. But who cares what I think? As the great Jeffers wrote, “Be angry at the sun for setting/ If these things anger you.” This is the way the world works. Politicians do dumb things. We have to play the ball where it is. And that means we have to figure out who wins and who loses.
Here are some thoughts along those lines…
Agriculture. Agriculture, for whatever reasons, is exempt from the new rules. So farmers don’t have to worry about those manure pools out back or the flatulent cows emitting methane all over God’s green meadows. Those big tractors? Burn up that diesel! Agriculture is a winner by virtue of not losing, like a hockey team that skates to a tie.
Steel. Big loser. U.S Steel, AK Steel and even foreign steel companies with US operations all get a big kick in the family jewels on this one. Steelmaking emits all kinds of carbon dioxide. The worst-case scenario here is that the US simply won’t be making steel at some point in the future. The plants will all go to Brazil. China is already the biggest steel producer in the world. Now we just handed the country a bunch of new business. Avoid big steel in the US.
Utilities. Mostly losers. Under the bill, utilities will have to get 12% of their electricity from renewable sources. That means they are going to spend money buying windmills and solar panels. For some of the coal utilities, this is bad news – even though they caught a break when the government made a change to let coal have carbon permits for free to start off with. Gas utilities are better off, as they emit less carbon, but since coal gets some free carbon allowances upfront, their advantage will not be as big as I made out in my letter to you a month ago. (See, the problem with writing about potential legislation is the rules change every week.)
Still, I’d avoid coal producers or coal utilities. They wear big targets on their backs and can’t do much about it, except spend a lot of money. Bad for shareholders. There may be some very good ideas on the picks-and-shovel angle for coal, though. For example, a number of companies will sell equipment to clean up coal. And of course, the solar and wind guys are big winners.
Oil refiners. Losers. This is an industry in which it is hard to make money most of the time as it is. Now, under the new bill, refineries are really screwed. Basically, they are on the hook for about 44% of US carbon emissions. They would be among the biggest buyers of carbon emission allowances. I think with one stroke of the pen, the US government just made the US refining industry that much smaller. Lots of these older refineries will just have to close. US imports for gasoline will rise.
I think the refinery industry already sees the writing on the wall. This is one reason why Valero, the biggest US refinery, has been quick to get into the politically favored ethanol business. It’s also expanding overseas. Avoid the refineries.
Trading desks. Winners. It figures. As if the government doesn’t help financial firms enough, it is going to hand them a nice tomato in trading carbon credits. The head of Morgan Stanley’s US emission trading desk said: “Carbon, while relatively small, is a critical piece of our commodities offering.” So some financial firms with trading desks in carbon get a nice little payday.
To sum up, this is only the beginning. At the end of the day, this obsession with carbon footprints means that Americans are going to have to pay a lot more for products that use fossil fuels. It means we are going to pay a lot more for energy. Obama and his crew can draw up whatever fantasies they want, but they can’t repeal the laws of economics, which, like forces of nature, win out every time.
JAPAN DEADLOCKED OVER EMISSIONS TARGETS
Japanese Prime Minister Taro Aso and five Cabinet ministers concerned failed to reach a consensus Friday on a national midterm emissions reduction target despite the prime minister's plan to announce it next Wednesday.
The differences emerged chiefly between the Environment Ministry's hope to set an ambitious target and the industry ministry's demand for a lower target.
"There were differences in opinion between the ministers. I candidly think that we need to make efforts to put them together," Environment Minister Tetsuo Saito told a news conference, saying that he conveyed his view that a cut of 15-25 percent by 2020 from 1990 levels would be desirable.
Economy, Trade and Industry Minister Toshihiro Nikai separately told reporters, "I asserted that it would not be appropriate to impose a tremendous figure on people by turning to an idealistic theory."
Chief Cabinet Secretary Takeo Kawamura said, "Though we have to take both views into consideration, we naturally have to think about moving in a direction which is ambitious and exercising our leadership in tackling global warming."
Kawamura told a news conference that the participants did not reach consensus over which direction Japan should take.
CHINA FIRES WARNING SHOT AT GREEN ZEALOTS
China's official news agency has accused rich countries of shirking their duty to fight climate change and seeking to divide developing countries, warning that negotiations for a new global climate pact face deep disputes.
The commentary by China's state-run Xinhua news agency on Fiday comes while negotiations in Bonn seek to foster consensus ahead of a key conference in Copenhagen in December that aims to announce a new international agreement on global warming.
It also comes shortly before the chief U.S. climate change envoy, Todd Stern, arrives in Beijing for talks. China and the United States are the world's top two emitters of the greenhouse gases from human activity that are stoking global warming, and agreement between them is vital for a new pact.
But the official commentary, and earlier remarks by a senior Chinese negotiator, showed much divides Beijing from Washington over actions to contain greenhouse gas emissions. "A small number of developed countries have been constantly seeking to shirk their responsibilities and are hoping to revise the basic principles of the negotiations," said the commentary, after noting recent remarks by U.S. officials.
"The climate change negotiations involve all the countries in the world, and there are complex clashes of interests and some conflicts are deep-seated."
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