Saturday, October 06, 2007

Ignore Pacific Climate Shift - Just Blame Humans

Hardly a day goes by without a new claim about a human influence on climate. In the last 18 months we've been told, not once but three times, that the air circulation across the tropical Pacific is slowing down and it's all our fault.

The problem is that the scientific papers making those claims have somehow managed to completely ignore the Great Pacific Climate Shift of 1976 despite this being well-known to climatologists. The changes caused by that climate shift can account for the altered circulation pattern. Despite what the three papers say we don't need to include any human influence.

Was the omission of the Climate Shift deliberate or accidental through ignorance? Neither is particularly palatable in such a controversial field where we expect, but don't always get, impartial and accurate science.

Of course such an omission in peer-reviewed papers doesn't reflect well on the reviewers and journals in question, but many of us are used to that bias by now. See the full analysis here (PDF)


A Challenge to the Carbon Dioxide / Global Warming Connection

One issue that seems to have been lost or avoided in the debate over the connection between atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) and global warming is the miniscule mass of CO2 that is being blamed for so many past, present and predicted natural disasters. The mass of atmospheric CO2 is extremely small when compared to the total mass of the Earth's atmosphere and even smaller when compared to the combined masses of the land and water features on the Earth's surface as well.

The directly proportional relationship that exists between the mass of any object and its heat capacity is essentially axiomatic: all other factors being the same, the larger the mass of an object, the greater its ability to capture, store, transport and release heat. Since the concentration of CO2 in the Earth's atmosphere is so small, the notion that it is causing global warming seems to ignore this basic truth.

This discussion illustrates how the connection between global warming and the tiny mass of CO2 in the Earth's atmosphere has been exaggerated. The challenge, expressed here, simply asks the proponents of CO2 induced global warming to reconcile their theories with classical scientific principles and established physical data.

See paper here


Global Warming's Trillion-Dollar Turkey

A trillion dollars doesn't buy what it used to - at least when it comes to global warming, according to a new analysis from the Environmental Protection Agency. Last July, this column reported that the latest global warming bill - the Low Carbon Economy Act of 2007, introduced by Sens. Jeff Bingaman, D-N.M. and Arlen Specter, R-Pa. - would cost taxpayers more than $1 trillion in its first 10 years and untold trillions of dollars in subsequent decades.

This week, the EPA sent its analysis of the bill's impact on climate to Bingaman and Specter. Now we can see what we'd get for our money, and we may as well just build a giant bonfire with the cash and enjoy toasting marshmallows over it.

For reference purposes, the current level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is about 380 parts per million. The EPA estimates that if no action is taken to curb CO2 emissions, the atmospheric concentration of CO2 would be 718 ppm by 2095.

If the Bingaman-Specter bill were implemented, however, the EPA estimates that CO2 levels would be 695 ppm - a whopping reduction of 23 ppm.

The EPA also estimated that if all countries - including China, India, Brazil and other developing nations - curb CO2 emissions, the atmospheric concentration of CO2 would be 491 ppm in 2095, including the above-mentioned 23 ppm reduction from the implementation of the Bingaman-Specter bill.

So it appears that no matter how you slice it, Bingaman-Specter is worth a 23 ppm-reduction in atmospheric CO2 by 2095. But what are the climatic implications of this reduction in terms of global temperature? After all, we are talking about global warming.

Although the EPA didn't pursue its analysis that far, figuring out the implications are readily doable using the assumptions and formulas of the United Nations' Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Under the no-action scenario (718-to-695 ppm), the IPCC formulas indicate that the multitrillion-dollar Bingaman-Specter bill might reduce average global temperature by 0.13 degrees Celsius. Under the maximum regulation scenario (514-to-491 ppm), Bingaman-Specter might reduce average global temperature by 0.18 degrees Celsius. Actual temperature reductions are likely to be less since these estimates rely on the IPCC's alarmist-friendly assumptions and formulas.

The question, then, becomes this: Is it really worth trillions of taxpayer dollars over 90 years to perhaps reduce global temperatures by 0.13-0.18 degrees Celsius? If you can't answer that question, consider this.

Under the no-action scenario, average global temperature might be 1.2 degrees Celsius higher in 2095 than it is today, once again using conservative IPCC assumptions and formulas. Under the maximum-regulation scenario, average global temperature might be 1.03 degrees Celsius higher than today. (For reference purposes, the estimated total increase in average global temperature for the 20th century was about 0.50 degrees Celsius.)

So what's the difference in mean global temperature between the no-action scenario and the maximum-regulation scenario?

Could it be a whopping 0.17 degrees Centigrade? Is that what global warming hysteria is all about? The Bingaman-Specter bill, then, would cost taxpayers trillions of dollars and produce virtually nothing in terms of temperature outcome. But the pain of Bingaman-Specter doesn't stop with trillions of taxpayer dollars. The heart of the Bingaman-Specter bill is a so-called cap-and-trade system in which CO2 emission limits (caps) would be decreed and certain businesses and other special interest group emitters (such as farmers and states) would be given permits to emit CO2.

Emitters that have extra permits could sell them in the open market to emitters that weren't lucky enough to get free permits and that need permits. Extra permits, as such, are essentially free money.

Proponents of the cap-and-trade scheme - generally speaking, conniving environmentalists who want to appear to be business-friendly and special interest emitters who want to feed at the taxpayer trough - portray it as a "market-based" approach to addressing global warming concerns. Not only is cap-and-trade not "market-based," highly respected economists, including former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan, Arthur Laffer and Harvard University's Greg Mankiw, say cap-and-trade will cause significant economic harm.

In a recent paper sponsored by the Free Enterprise Education Institute, a think tank with which I am affiliated, Laffer said that a cap-and-trade scheme would act as a constraint on the energy supply - much like the 1970s-era Arab oil embargoes and other energy crises. He estimates that cap-and-trade would shrink the U.S. economy by 5.2 percent and reduce family income by $10,800 by 2020.

So the Bingaman-Specter bill not only would waste taxpayer money, but it would harm economic growth and reduce family income - all without affecting global temperature in any sort of meaningful or even detectable way.

Although the EPA acknowledged, "Since the variation in cumulative global greenhouse gas emissions are small under [Bingaman-Specter], the variation in the resulting CO2 concentrations are small," this only hints at the bill's futility.

There can be little doubt as to why the EPA failed to carry through the ultimate implications of the 23 ppm impact of Bingaman-Specter. The agency would have "officially" exposed the bill and global warming alarmism as utterly absurd.


Even a freshman student can see through Gore -- see below

After watching Al Gore's "An Inconvenient Truth," I saw that Gore, despite his monotonous tone and poor use of humor, is indeed a great persuasive speaker. But that is just it - Gore employs useless rhetoric and persuasive techniques, such as showing the image of a cute, fuzzy polar bear, to convince the world of global warming's validity, rather than sticking to the facts.

Gore's efforts made him to be one of the most sought-after speakers in America and, most recently, garnered him an Oscar. Hailed as a secular saint and the Noah of our time by experts such as Katie Couric and Oprah Winfrey, Gore travels to campuses across the nation to proliferate his alarmist cries, attempting to act as a sort of John the Baptist in the wilderness.

However, outside the realm of the liberal media and Hollywood, Gore is looked at with pity and disgust by real scientists who have done extensive research on the subject of global warming. According to February 2007 issue of Philidelphia Magazine, for instance, geologist Robert Giegengack believes Gore's understanding of the world is so poor that he told his undergraduate students at the University of Pennsylvania: "Every single one of you knows more about global warming than Al Gore."

But why would Al Gore devote his life to a seemingly baseless, ridiculous science? The answer is simple - the ecology of helpless protesting has become a very lucrative business. Billions of dollars of grant money are flowing into the pockets of those on the man-made global warming bandwagon. All of the alarmism is designed to get your money and then guilt you into living your life a certain way. Aside from this, do not forget that Gore charges $100,000 at each stop on his tour across the nation.

So what is really going on in our atmosphere, and can we prevent it from happening? Climate scientists across the globe once thought, like Al Gore, that CO2 was the culprit in the story of global warming. However, recent scientific research has shown that the sun has been driving temperature changes, as we have the highest solar activity we have had in 1,000 years. In fact, according to the Danish National Space Center, the planet is experiencing a natural period of low cloud cover due to fewer cosmic rays entering the atmosphere.

Also, the Russian Academy of Sciences showed in January that, as solar radiation warms Earth, CO2 is released into the atmosphere from the world's oceans, not from SUVs and factories. Also, CO2 may not be as dangerous and threatening as we once thought. Surprisingly, in 2006, even the United Nations' records show that cow emissions are more damaging to the planet than CO2 from cars.

Greenhouse gases, the lovechildren of increased CO2 levels, do not consistently continue to have a warming effect on Earth, contrary to popular opinion. At some point "the heat-trapping capacity of the gas and its effect get saturated, and you don't have increased heating," according to a report by Boston College geology and geophysics professor Amy Frappier.

Furthermore, the Kyoto Protocol is nothing but a socialist scheme designed to suck money out of rich countries to level the worldwide economic playing field. Additionally, the Kyoto Protocol is all cost with no gain. Wharton Econometrics Forecasting Associates estimates that Kyoto would cost an average family of four $2,700 annually, yet would only reduce the temperature by 0.06 degrees Celsius. Also, if legislation like Kyoto would pass in our country, it would represent the largest tax increase ever. According to Wharton, the Kyoto Protocol would cost the U.S. economy at least $300 billion annually, 10 times President Clinton's 1993 record tax increase, which cost $32 billion. It's no wonder the Senate unanimously voted down Gore in the late 1990s.

Also, since Gore calls for great reform, wouldn't you expect him to be an environmental leader? However, this is not the case, as Gore not only flies on a private jet to all the different cities around the nation, but he also has not converted to green energy or sacrificed consumption, as he has called the citizens of America to do. I guess you could say he is almost as hypocritical as the do-nothing Democrats in Congress.

I'm not sure which is more arrogant: to say we caused global warming or to say that we can fix it. Both positions are wrong. The notion that humans have caused global warming is sensational, and alarmists such as Gore can be equated to little kids attempting to scare each other about the end of the world. It quite possibly could be the greatest deception in the history of science, and people need to search for answers from real experts, rather than listening to Hollywood stars and political has-beens.


Some skepticism in Britain

No matter what Zac Goldsmith and David Cameron may say, there is one corner of the Conservative party that is forever sceptical about global warming. That corner gathered in a small studio above the Grand Theatre in Blackpool last night, where the Freedom Association was holding a meeting provocatively titled "Let Cooler Heads Prevail". The Freedom Association's rampant lion - or should that be lion rampant? - was on display. Delegates cooled themselves with climate-sceptic fans. They were thoroughly enjoying themselves.

"You either believe it or you don't," Roger Helmer, the eurosceptic MEP, told them. "And in my case, I don't!" Cheers. "This whole issue has got completely out of hand. It has become a new religion. You have to believe it. If you do not believe it, you are a heretic. They would like to burn us at the stake - using recycled faggots!"

Zac Goldsmith had apparently criticised him for not reading the Quality of Life report. Well, he wasn't going to! It was 500 pages long and a waste of paper!

Helmer introduced Russell Lewis, the former director-general of the Institute of Economic Affairs. That meant we could trust him, Mr Helmer explained. "My real reason for coming here tonight is to cheer you up," Lewis told delegates. "I have two messages. First, I am sceptical about the whole official theory of global warming. Second, I think if it does happen it will do us a world of good."

One by one, he exposed the myths peddled by the environmental movement. The rise in temperature over recent years was "tiny - well within the range of natural variation". Scientists were using thermometers on land rather than in the sea, and everyone knew that urban development raised temperatures. Antarctica and Greenland were only melting around the edges - in the middle, the ice was getting thicker.

The population of polar bears was "exploding" and had risen by 25% in the past decade. As for penguins, they are "very adaptable creatures, and certain penguins are flourishing in the tropical Galapagos islands." Global warming would not increase malaria: it used to be endemic in Westminster.

"It is not the planet that is in danger. It is freedom... Don't worry about global warming - it's a myth," he concluded. The audience roared.

Next up was Iain Murray of the Competitiveness Enterprise Institute in Washington, DC. Murray took a more measured view. Using the estimates in the Stern report, he explained the impact that cutting emissions would have on the GDP of developed countries and the prospects of poorer nations. "Half a century of stagnation, not just for the US ... If you still think that we need to do something about global warming," he said, "don't go down the route of emissions reduction."

Needless to say, no one in the shadow cabinet would be seen dead at a Freedom Association meeting. The official debates happen at the Climate Clinic, a series of events sponsored by companies like Ecover. Last night's was dedicated to a controversial report by a number of environmental organisations, including Greenpeace, the RSPB and Friends of the Earth, which criticised all three parties' green policies....



For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, DISSECTING LEFTISM, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL and EYE ON BRITAIN. My Home Pages are here or here or here. Email me (John Ray) here. For times when is playing up, there are mirrors of this site here and here.


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