Tuesday, November 13, 2007

"Manmade Global Warming Myth" Shockingly Refuted by ABC Affiliate

Post below lifted from Newsbusters

You'd better strap yourself in tightly before proceeding, for the following story and video will likely shock you more than anything you've seen in quite some time.

On Thursday, in the middle of NBC's "Green is Universal" campaign, an ABC affiliate in Tyler, Texas, broadcast a segment during one of its news programs focusing exclusively on positions skeptical of man's role in climate change. In fact, one of the meteorologists involved actually referred to this whole issue as "the manmade global warming myth."

During the piece, not only did the two anchors express a viewpoint contrary to the current media meme, but also the reporter, Molly Reuter, and the station's three meteorologists, unanimously spoke against the view held by Nobel Laureate Al Gore and his sycophant devotees (video available here)

KLTV 7 METEOROLOGIST MORGAN PALMER: Any idea can become mainstream if you just hear one side of the argument...Because of the money involved, because that folks who are writing these papers at a lot of institutions are going after grant moneys and the grant moneys in many cases are funded by folks who might have a very good intention, environmentalists, but unfortunately the papers that are being written are heavily weighed toward the manmade global warming myth.

Shocking, yes? But there's much more:

KLTV 7 METEOROLOGIST GRANT DADE: Is the Earth warming? Yes, I think it is. But is man causing that? No. It's just a simple climate cycle that the earth goes through over periods of thousands of years.

KLTV 7 METEOROLOGIST MARK SCIRTO: The late 1800's, early 1900's, we were so cold that parts of Galveston Bay froze over. In part of the first decade, in part of the 20th century it was one of the warmest ever, then we cooled off again, and then in the '50s it was the big drought.

DADE: Did you hear about the Arctic ice melting? But you don't hear that in Antarctica last winter was the most ice ever recorded on the Antarctic ice sheet. You don't hear that.

SCIRTO: Eventually, what's going to happen is ten or 20 or 30 years from now, this is all going to be gone because we will not be warming anymore.


By Bjorn Lomborg

This week, the United Nations' climate scientists will release a major report synthesising the world's best global warming research. It will be the first time we've heard from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) since its scientists won the Nobel Peace Prize with former US vice-president Al Gore.

The IPCC's Assessment Report will tell policy-makers what to expect from man-made climate change. It is the result of rigorous and painstaking labour: more than can be said for the other Nobel Prize winner. The difference between Gore's claims and IPCC research is instructive.

While Gore was creating alarm with his belief that a 20-foot-high wall of water would inundate low-lying cities, the IPCC showed us we should realistically prepare for a rise of one foot or so by the end of the century. Beyond the dramatic difference, it is also worth putting that one foot in perspective. Over the last 150 years, sea levels rose about one foot - yet, did we notice?

Most tellingly, while Gore was raising fears about the Gulf Stream halting and a new Ice Age starting, the scientists discounted the prospect entirely. The Gulf Stream takes warm water from around Mexico and pushes it toward Europe. Around 8,000 years ago, a melting lake in the region of the present-day Canadian Great Lakes broke through and a massive torrent of cold, fresh water flooded into the North Atlantic, significantly slowing the Gulf Stream for around 400 years. Gore worries that Greenland's ice shelves could melt and do the same thing again. Ice in Greenland is obviously melting. But over the next century, it'll spill 1,000 times less water into the ocean than occurred 8,000 years ago. It will have a negligible effect on the Gulf Stream.

In his movie An Inconvenient Truth, Gore claimed that scientists were discovering that the current is "surprisingly fragile". However, the IPCC scientists write in their 2007 report: "None of the current models simulates an abrupt reduction or shut-down" of the Gulf Stream. But what sort of nightmare would ensue if Gore were right? Siberia-like conditions in Europe? Actually, no. Europe would need to plunge by almost 13C to get that cold. Halting the Gulf Stream wouldn't achieve anything near that.

Gore and others have bought into a popular myth: that the Gulf Stream is the reason that western European winters are so much warmer than those of eastern North America. It is true the Gulf Stream provides a few degrees of extra heat to Europe, but it actually warms the west side of the North Atlantic almost as much. It's not the reason Europe is warmer than the US in winter; warm winds are.

Let's hear from the IPCC again: "Catastrophic scenarios about the beginning of an ice age... are mere speculations, and no climate model has produced such an outcome. In fact, the processes leading to an ice age are sufficiently well understood and completely different from those discussed here, that we can confidently exclude this scenario."

Gore's claims have received a lot of notice. Hopefully, the careful work of the IPCC will also receive the attention that it deserves.


Canadian doubletalk

The CBC television programme, "The Fifth Estate", describes its raison d' etre as follows:

"to challenge assumptions and question conventional wisdom, and most importantly to give voice to victims of injustice who deserve to be heard but have been silenced."

But what if The Fifth Estate itself is the perpetrator of the injustice? What if it is their own network that has ignored and mistreated those who disagree with "conventional wisdom" on an issue of national importance? Will the programme then "challenge assumptions" on which fashionable views are based? Or will they simply parrot political correctness, carefully ignoring, or denigrating the opinions of those who spend their lives studying the field?

If the past year's repeated broadcasts of The Denial Machine (aired for at least the 15th time on October 28th on CBC TV) is any indication, then the answer to these questions are obvious--when it comes to climate change, the Fifth Estate is not even remotely interested in questioning conventional wisdom or even following basic journalistic ethics. They are climate campaigners--state-funded propagandists, pure and simple. And, as is usually the case with partisan activists, the ends apparently justifies the means in their eyes, no matter how disreputable.

My (Tim Ball's) own experience with Fifth Estate staff is a case in point. We at NRSP had heard from our American friends who had already been interviewed for The Fifth Estate programme in mid-2006 that it was clearly being designed to malign scientists who dared speak out against the politically correct, but scientifically-flawed hypothesis that human emissions of carbon dioxide were causing a `climate crisis'. U.S. scientists complained to us that Fifth Estate staff were more interested in creating controversy about alleged funding sources of their work than in listening to anything they had to say about scientific research.

Recognizing the CBC show as a `hatchet job' in the making, we refused the Fifth Estate's dogged requests for interviews, e-mailing them (Tom Harris) "based on your past coverage of the issue and our feedback from people you have already interviewed, or tried to interview, we did not believe the upcoming show would cover the issue in a fair and balanced fashion." We (Tim Ball) even told the CBC via e-mail, "I have now decided not to participate in your program and ask that you not use this or any previous communications in the programme."

We also relayed the comments of our US friends to our scientist contacts in Canada and other countries who likewise refused to be interviewed by the Fifth Estate for the show. This is why none of the many Canadian and other non-American climate scientists who question the nonsensical assertions of Al Gore and David Suzuki appear in The Denial Machine - except me (Tim Ball), that is. So, how did I (Tim Ball) end up `starring' in the Fifth Estate's slick `docu-ganda' despite having totally refused to participate?

On the morning of October 5, 2006 I was setting up my Power Point slides for a breakfast presentation I was giving at a conference in Dawson Creek, B.C. when a reporter with a camera and sound man approached me. He asked if he could interview me. I asked who he represented. He replied "CBC News". I said, "You are not the Fifth Estate are you because I have declined to be interviewed by them." He said no, he was CBC News. I replied that I didn't have time for an interview as I had a seven hour drive ahead of me right after the talk as I was to present again that evening in La Crete. The reporter said he wanted to talk about funding and I asked why funding from one source was considered acceptable and agenda-less while funding from those on the other side was considered suspect (with only a few exceptions (e.g. John Oakley on AM640 radio--listen here; Suzuki's errors are outlined here) few dare question, for example, the David Suzuki Foundation (DSF) about their funding sources even though they list oil and gas companies and foreign foundations among their donors).

While I spoke with the `CBC News' reporter, I noticed the cameraman busy doing something with his equipment but since I had said no to an interview, I assumed his camera was off. The reporter then asked if they could follow me to La Crete. I said he could do what he wanted. He left the stage only to come back a few minutes later saying the crew thought it a waste to travel seven hours for a ten minute interview and could I agree to a brief interview after my talk? I consented.

After my presentation, I went to the back of the hall where the CBC team had two opposing chairs, the cameraman, lights and sound man set up. I sat down and they put the microphone on me, then the interviewer said, I think I should tell you that this is for The Fifth Estate, what do you want to do? I stood up, took the microphone off and said, "I'm out of here." He asked if we could discuss it and admitted that his confession as to representing the programme was done at the urging of his technicians. I replied to the reporter, "I don't talk to liars", and left. I would swear I saw a distinct "good for you" look on the camera and sound men's faces.

That, so I thought, was that. Little did I know that, without my knowledge or consent, the Fifth Estate cameraman had in fact secretly filmed my conversation with the reporter before the talk, a good portion of which appeared in the many airings of The Denial Machine. My specific request that they not use "any previous communications in the programme" had fallen on deaf ears. While this sort of things goes on among some of the less scrupulous media every day, it is a disgrace that our national broadcaster stoops so low. I am planning on registering a formal complaint with the network's Ombudsman.


Czech leader raises new doubts on climate change

Czech President Vaclav Klaus has criticised Chancellor Angela Merkel for her efforts to fight climate change, saying politicians, journalists and scientists are exploiting an unproven issue for their own advantage. In an interview to be published in WirtschaftsWoche business magazine in Germany on Monday, Klaus said many world leaders had privately congratulated him for doubting whether climate change was man-made in a Sept. 24 speech to a U.N. conference.

"The unfair and irrational debate about global warming really annoys me," said Klaus, a leading climate change sceptic. "The issue is increasingly turning into the fundamental ideological conflict of our times. The climate protection movement represents a new ideology."

Ahead of a U.N. climate panel meeting starting on Monday, Klaus compared it to the East-West conflict of the Cold War. He said he was surprised Merkel, a physicist who grew up in communist East Germany, would fall for such an idea without making a "critical examination of a controversial hypothesis". Merkel has taken a leading role in fighting climate change. "She's lived in a socialist society and she knows the dangers of ideologies that are aimed against freedom," said Klaus, whose Sept. 24 climate conference speech may also have hurt the Czech Republic's bid for a U.N. Security Council seat.

"Utopia is an excellent escape for politicians because they can busy themselves with far-away goals and don't have to worry about immediate problems," added Klaus. "Climate change is an excellent issue for that escape."

Klaus said many world leaders privately congratulated him for his sceptical remarks but he did not want to name them. "I'm not alone," he said. "I didn't get applause for my speech at the New York climate conference. But afterwards many government leaders came to me and congratulated me. They said 'that was important, someone has to say it'. Evidently you need to be brave to speak up against climate policies." ...

Klaus told the German weekly magazine he did not doubt that global warming was happening and that humans were playing a role. But he said the decisive question was how big that role is. Klaus said it is only marginal. "You can analyse the climate debate as a sociological trend. First, politicians have put climate protection on the agenda for self-interest and journalists then jumped aboard as freeloaders kicking up a storm with a headline-making issue," he said. "And then come the climate researchers who want to maximise their profit by devoting themselves to an issue where the most research funds are being allocated," he said.


Outspoken ASU prof draws ire

Arizona State University climatologist Robert Balling attended the premiere of Al Gore's global-warming documentary, An Inconvenient Truth. He served on the United Nations' climate-change panel and studies how drought and warmer temperatures will affect the West. He bikes to work and eats organic food.

But environmentalists hate him. Balling, 54, has spoken and written extensively against the widely held scientific view that the documented rise in global temperatures is the result of human activity and that serious consequences will result. Even if humans are warming the planet by causing the buildup of greenhouse gases, he says, the doomsday scenarios forecast by many climate scientists may never happen. His views have elicited outrage from environmentalists and scorn from some fellow scientists.

They've also resulted in conference invitations and research grants from industries with a stake in debunking the large body of research that supports a link between human activity and global warming.

Despite his notoriety as a hero of the skeptic crowd, Balling's research and lifestyle contain some surprising contradictions. He is in charge of climate studies at the Decision Center for a Desert City, an ambitious ASU program that looks at how drought will affect the Valley. He's a registered independent and lives a lifestyle that the hardiest environmental activist would recognize as green.

His outspoken views and the criticism they get have put ASU in an awkward position as it tries to shape itself as a leader in climate-change studies, ASU officials said.

Balling seems bemused by his reputation among activists. "Somehow I've been branded this horrible person who belongs in the depths of hell," he said. "There's just no tolerance right now."

The critic gets criticized

For most of his career at ASU, Balling's work focused on climate issues such as the urban-heat-island effect, drought and desertification - many of the same themes now viewed as possible consequences of climate change. He was head of ASU's Office of Climatology for 16 years. In 1992, he wrote a book called The Heated Debate. The book assailed several aspects of mainstream climate science. Talk-show host Rush Limbaugh began quoting the book. Sales took off. An invitation to address the directors of a coal company followed. His reputation as a global-warming skeptic was made.

Balling has been booed at public appearances. A fellow climatologist publicly dismissed his widely circulated critique of An Inconvenient Truth with the observation that "some people believe the Earth is flat, too." In May, Vanity Fair magazine published a cartoon labeled "Dante's Inferno: Green Edition." Balling was in the eighth circle of hell.

The National Academy of Sciences, NASA and a host of scientific academies have endorsed the conclusion that global temperatures are rising and that warming is likely the result of greenhouse gases emitted by human activity.

"It is fair to say that it is not absolutely certain that the warming we have observed so far is largely due to human activity, but (it) is very likely. And it is virtually certain that continued rises in greenhouse gases will lead to significantly more warming," wrote Eric Steig, a professor at the University of Washington, in an e-mail.

Balling's research over the years has explored sun activity, pollution from volcanoes, the urban-heat-island effect and errors in past temperature models as possible causes of rising temperatures. His positions have modified over time. Today, he says that about half the warming recorded since 1975 can be attributed to greenhouse gases.

Research questioned

Critics have assailed Balling's ties to industries. Balling received more than $679,000 in research funding from fossil-fuel-industry organizations between 1989 and 2002, according to figures provided by ASU. He served as a scientific adviser to the Greening Earth Society, a public-relations organization founded by the Western Fuels Association to promote the benefits of global warming.

It's no secret that scientists ask for funding from sources that seem more likely to provide it, Balling said. "If I send a proposal to Exxon, I might send a proposal that (describes the research) and also says, 'Oh, by the way, based on our preliminary results, we don't see the warming that should be there,' " he said.

The source of his funding doesn't affect his results, he said. Studies have to be peer-reviewed and go through a rigorous independent vetting process before they are published. He has been widely published in scientific journals on climate topics and has received more than $7 million in grants from the National Science Foundation and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Scientists in many fields accept industry funding for their work, particularly as federal research budgets have been slashed. But critics say funding can color the outcome of research. Several studies have found that research funded by a particular industry usually yields results that reflect favorably on the industry, said Merrill Goozner, director of the Integrity in Science Project at the Center for Science in the Public Interest, a Washington, D.C.-based advocacy group. "The scientific process can be affected by the attitude of the researcher," Goozner said. [But not if they are Greenies, of course]

On the fringe

Since 2002, Balling has been director of ASU's master's degree program in geographic information systems. But his climate work has garnered the most national attention, which bothers some colleagues at ASU. "For ASU, having Balling as such a prominent figure in the climate debate has been awkward, not so much because of his positions but because we have lacked scientists of similar stature whose work supports more widely held, opposing views," Jonathan Fink, director of ASU's Global Institute of Sustainability, wrote in an e-mail. "Hence we have been viewed as somewhat of a fringe institution in the world of climate-change research."

Despite his national reputation as skeptic, Balling said he considers himself an environmentalist. If there was a competition for living green, "put the cards on the table, and I'll beat 99 percent of the faculty here," Balling said. He avoids driving and doesn't own a cellphone. He would even have liked to see Al Gore win the presidency in 2000.

Warming is happening, he said, and human activity may play a role. But he believes engineering will find ways to accommodate any environmental changes that result. In the meantime, he's not worrying about melting ice caps or rising sea levels. "In my lifetime, this global-warming issue might fade away," he said. Then, he chuckled, adding, "It's easy to say that. I don't live on an island."


Stupidity in France

But maybe it is just a charade. French corruption makes it hard to tell

Another story from last week that was difficult to get a handle on, because too much was written about it, was the so-called "Grenelle Agreement on the Environment", initiated amidst much hype by the planet's second best friend, Nicolas Sarkozy. The conference, which opened on October 24, was attended by the planet's first best friend Al Gore and by hundreds of other people of whom I know very little.

The purpose of the talks was to set goals for France in the general field of ecology and environment, goals which, if implemented, would no doubt cost the French taxpayer much more money than if they were just left on paper to be discussed at some future date, like 3050.

Grenelle was the culmination of three months of intense debates, conducted primarily by the Minister of Ecology, Jean-Louis Borloo and his staff along with ecologists, union leaders and businessmen, on a variety of issues. It closed on October 26 with a long list of proposals clearly designed to make groups like Greenpeace happy. The following are some of the highlights of the goals arrived at by the conference, as reported by Le Monde.

In public buildings and new housing, lower consumption of energy is to become generalized, while heating systems of existing housing and buildings is to be renovated. The State commits to completing this renovation in five years.

Plans to increase highway and airport capacity are to be halted, except for cases of "security or local interest".

Two thousand km of new railways and ship routes are to be constructed.

The consumption of motor-fuels and the CO2 emissions from airplanes is to be reduced by half by the year 2020.

Implementation in 2008 of a new "eco-tax", called "eco-pastille", where a person who purchases a gas-guzzler will be forced to pay a special tax, and a person who purchases an ecologically correct car will be rewarded (with the tax money received from the first person).

(Is this crazy or what?)

Another eco-tax on tractor-trailers on roads other than highways.

The possibility of a system of urban tolls.

An examination of the possibility of a "carbon tax", i.e. a tax based on the energy consumption of goods and services.

Banning incandescent light bulbs by 2010.

Development of renewable energies in order that they surpass 20% of the energy consumption by 2020.

A ban on the sale of pesticides or building and decorating materials that are said to contain "extremely troubling" substances.

A compulsory declaration of the presence of nanomaterials in consumer products.

A plan to regulate air quality by establishing the threshold of 15 mg/m3 of fine particles, by 2015.

A plan to triple the extent of organic farming, to attain 6% of the arable land by 2010, and the introduction of one organic meal per week in the school cafeterias.

A freeze on GMO products until a conclusion by an independent team of experts can be reached.

Creation of a green network linking natural spaces that would have legal precedence over any new plan for development.

There has been much criticism of this new plan. Gerard Pince of the Blue Revolution has an excellent critique posted at his website.

He begins with a refutation of global warming as a scientific fact, and then points to the incoherence of a government that claims it wants to increase growth only to proceed to a grandiose plan for growth reduction. He explains that France represents 0.9% of the world's population, and that it would be absurd to think that these measures would have any impact on the planet. The impact, he notes, would be the negative effects on the French economy He closes with this speculation:

In truth, I hope that Nicolas Sarkozy does not keep any of his promises. By organizing this masquerade he wanted, no doubt, to neutralize the activism of hostile groups hoping to oppose him in the upcoming municipal elections. Indeed, one of his measures envisages the naming of a greater number of ecologists to the Economic and Social Council: there is nothing like a political reward for calming down those who are most riled up. Furthermore, I presume that the guardian angels will distribute a few suitcases of banknotes to help ease the ecological relations. At bottom, in this area as in the others, the government buys social peace through widespread material and moral corruption.

It's a method that works. It works until the day when those who received nothing revolt en masse. That is the usual way a banana republic meets its end.

Note: The choice of the word "Grenelle" is interesting. Most readers are aware that in 1968 France was shaken by a major rebellion of students and workers. These were the famous events of May '68 that led to the gradual disintegration of traditional institutions. In order to appease the rebels, the government held talks at the ministry of labor, located on rue de Grenelle. The talks came to be called the Grenelle Agreement, and among other things, granted a 25% increase in the minimum wage.

"Grenelle" has come to refer to the notion of an accord in general, but it is impossible for many Frenchmen not to recall May '68 and its disastrous aftermath whenever the word is uttered.



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 blogger.com is playing up, there are mirrors of this site here and here.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Pease look at the BBC website and you will find an article called "behind the lines" it is, as you would expect a disgustingly biased report that tries to smear the skeptics as divided and unsure and stupid!
I think this is the "smoking gun" that nails the BBC AGW promoters and shows them in their true colours?
We have endured dozens of trash BBC TV propaganda films that defy belief, high on misleading innuendo and junk evidence but low on hard facts! They have a comments section if anyone would like to pass a comment?