Why is there so much preoccupation with atmospheric CO2 concentrations and reducing anthropogenic CO2 emissions when it is well documented in the peer-reviewed scientific literature that the CO2 contribution to the overall greenhouse effect is so weak that it can be easily supplanted by small changes in clouds and water vapor, or natural climate-changing constituents?


Saturday, 25 February 2012

While climate alarmists wallow in the mud of their ugly subculture, a real climate scientist speaks out in London - Prof Lindzen, undermining crass climate curricula in schools the world over.

Stated briefly, I will simply try to clarify what the debate over climate change is really about. It most certainly is not about whether climate is changing: it always is. 

It is not about whether CO2 is increasing: it clearly is. It is not about whether the increase in CO2, by itself, will lead to some warming: it should. 

The debate is simply over the matter of how much warming the increase in CO2 can lead to, and the connection of such warming to the innumerable claimed catastrophes. 

The evidence is that the increase in CO2 will lead to very little warming, and that the connection of this minimal warming (or even significant warming) to the purported catastrophes is also minimal. 

The arguments on which the catastrophic claims are made are extremely weak – and commonly acknowledged as such. 

They are sometimes overtly dishonest.

Professor Richard Lindzen introducing a lecture (pdf) he gave in Westminster on 22nd February, 2012, in response to an invitation from the Campaign to Repeal the Climate Act.  Video via Climate Realists.

Josh was there and captured insights and visual reminders in his gifted way:

Lindzen even managed to penetrate the smug assurance of someone at that home of sanctimonious superficial climate alarmism, the Independent:

Is catastrophic global warming, like the Millennium Bug, a mistake?

The educational implications of this are clear.  Here is perhaps the most distinguished scientifc meteorologist of our age.  His message is not the one our schools have been told to put out.

He is a moral and intellectual giant compared to the likes of Al Gore whose shoddy DVD was issued by the last government to all schools in England and Wales, or the likes of Peter Gleick, a vainglorious alarmist now being hoist by his own petard, or, another alarmist en route to a personal fortune, Dave Miliband, a leading member of that government whose Climate Change Act brings such shame and loss to British society.

Lindzen's core message is not new.  This is not a sudden revelation.  Leading climate scientists were saying it loud and clear to politicians 20 years ago, as the following statement, signed by Lindzen and many others, makes clear:

'February 27, 1992
WASHINGTON, D.C. - As independent scientists, researching atmospheric and climate problems, we are concerned by the agenda for UNCED, the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, being developed by environmental activist groups and certain political leaders. This so-called Earth Summit is scheduled to convene in Brazil in June 1992 and aims to impose a system of global environmental regulations, including onerous taxes on energy fuels, on the population of the United States and other industrialized nations.
Such policy initiatives derive from highly uncertain scientific theories. They are based on the unsupported assumption that catastrophic global warming follows from the burning of fossil fuels and requires immediate action. We do not agree.
A survey of U.S. atmospheric scientists, conducted in the summer of 1991, confirms that there is no consensus about the cause of the slight warming observed during the past century. A recently published research paper even suggests that sunspot variability, rather than a rise in greenhouse gases, is responsible for the global temperature increases and decreases recorded since about 1880.
Furthermore, the majority of scientific participants in the survey agreed that the theoretical climate models used to predict a future warming cannot be relied upon and are not validated by the existing climate record. Yet all predictions are based on such theoretical models.
Finally, agriculturalists generally agree that any increase in carbon dioxide levels from fossil fuel burning has beneficial effects on most crops and on world food supply.
We are disturbed that activists, anxious to stop energy and economic growth, are pushing ahead with drastic policies without taking notice of recent changes in the underlying science. We fear that the rush to impose global regulations will have catastrophic impacts on the world economy, on jobs, standards of living, and health care, with the most severe consequences falling upon developing countries and the poor.'

When it comes to cleaning the alarmist guff out of school curricula, one excuse that neither the politicians nor their tame educationalists who put those curricula together and forced them on to schools, will not have is 'we didn't know any better'.  They will also not have the excuse of 'only now has recent scientific knowledge suggested less cause for alarm'.  No, the real knowledge has never provided sufficient cause for alarm.  Never.  The alarm was and is based on speculation - hollow, flaky, insubstantial and promoted vigorously by grossly irresponsible people for a generation.

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