'Finally, it is essential that intellectual integrity be restored to the scientific profession. Too much money has been devoted to funding global warming scientists, who have depended for their livelihood on a high level of public and political anxiety about global warming, and have hence tended to suppress the evidence against the popular hysteria. .... Enlightenment standards of scientific integrity have been subverted by government cash and media hysteria. For the sake of all our futures this must never be allowed to happen again.'
Martin Hutchinson, http://www.tbwns.com/2015/07/20/the-bears-lair-global-warming-hysteria-one-huge-ghastly-mistake/

Friday, 28 January 2011

Climate propaganda: humour and a history lesson.



Under the previous government of the UK, this skit would have been very 'close to the bone'.  Let us hope the new government will keep away from such madness.  Mind you, in Canada when they went in for mass-indoctrination about climate dynamics back in 2002, something interesting happened:

'By 2002, McIntyre was in comfortable semi-retirement in Toronto ....every home in Canada was sent a leaflet about the risks of global warming.  When McIntyre read his copy....'

The rest is history, ably documented in the book from which the above quote was taken, 'The Hockey Stick Illusion' ( http://www.amazon.co.uk/Illusion-Climategate-Corruption-Science-Independent/dp/1906768358 ).


Wednesday, 26 January 2011

Climate Scaremongering Antidote: mankind is making progress, doomsayers are low-credibility distractions


Pierre Gosselin reports on a recent article in a German publication which points out just how much progress has been made over the last century or so, and how the doomladen forecasts of such as Paul Ehrlich have been refuted time and time again.  Such facile, highly articulate but profoundly stupid, doomsayers will no doubt always be with us, but must we take them so seriously?  Perhaps the spectacle of the IPCC disappearing in the quagmire of its own making will help this along.  Anyway, back to the article which is reported on here: http://notrickszone.com/2011/01/26/german-focus-magazine-facts-show-planet-much-better-today/

Extracts below are in italics, other words are by Gosselin:

'Human prosperity

   " The world’s population has grown 6-fold since 1800, and at the same time life expectancy has doubled. Between 1955 and 2005 inflation-adjusted average personal income has tripled for the average person on the globe.”

Many of the poor indeed have gotten much richer.

Agriculture

How often do we hear about the threats of industrial agriculture devouring land to feed the exploding masses of people? Guess what? Modern agriculture protects wildlife and forests.

    "With the crop yields of 1961, farmers would have needed 32 million square km of cropland to have fed the 6 billion persons on the globe in 2000. Instead they have been able to harvest the necessary amount of crops on just 15 million acres. That means an area almost the size of South America was spared the plow. Forests and savannahs were thus saved."

All thanks to modern agricultural technology, which today continues to develop nicely. Yet, today, many greens are busily bemoaning the very agriculture that has rescued millions of sq km of forests and wildlife from primitive manaul agricultural practices. Worse, they also want us to fuel our cars with bio-diesel, which would require the extra deforestation of millions of sq km.'
The report on the article ends as follows:
The future
So what lies in the future now that we have seen that every apocalyptic warning heard earlier in history has ended up being just fly-crap in the wind? The business of apocalypse is a big industry and involves lots of money – so don’t expect the end-of-world-charlatans to go away. There’s more money in it today than ever.
Being wrong every time isn’t going to deter today’s modern charlatans. They have a whole new line-up of catastrophes in their bag of tricks: climate change, biodiversity, ocean acidification, species extinction, to name some. And, there are plenty of malcontents out there who want to hear more, more, more.
But I suspect, like the earlier scares of the past, we’ll soon be able to put those on the list of seriously endangered species as well. Here today, extinct tomorrow.'
 
Schoolteachers should not be forced to show such travesties of truth and decency as 'An Inconvenient Truth', full as it is of doomladen prophesies based on errors of various kinds, including the error of forgetting that the truth will out in the end, and that people are not so dumb as Al and those behind him suppose.  But while teachers may be required by their curricula to propagate ill-founded scares around CO2, they may also have the freedom to inform their charges of all the amazing progress we have made in modern times. Reports such as the one linked to above will help with examples, as will books such as Matt Ridley's 'The Rational Optimist'.  

Friday, 21 January 2011

Climate Scaremongering Antidote: look at the quality of the scaremongerers

IPCC Nobel Laureates Lack Scientific Credibility


' IPCC insiders say many of those who shared in the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize have weak scientific credentials. They were chosen because they are of the right gender or come from the right country.'

Here is some good quality journalism - researched, penetrating, well-expressed, and giving a real sense of an independent, thinking mind at work and looking for clarity and insight.  Refreshing.  Three cheers for Donna Laframboise!    Shocked by an article which casually described an Argentinian scientist as a 'Nobel prize winner', she put that in the right perspective (he was merely part of the IPCC which was awarded a Nobel Peace Prize, not a science one) and then she dug through the IAC report and summarised some of the comments from IPCC insiders about their coworkers, e.g.

'Many scientists are [selected] by their political position and not by their competence. (p. 373)

'The most important problem of the IPCC is the nomination and selection of authors and Bureau Members. Some experts are included or excluded because of their political allegiance rather than their academic quality. Sometimes, the “right” authors are put in key positions with generous government grants to support their IPCC work, while the “wrong” authors are sidelined to draft irrelevant chapters and sections without any support. (p. 542)

'The whole process… [is] flawed by an excessive concern for geographical balance. All decisions are political before being scientific. (p.554)

'I tried very hard to engage my [Working Group 2] bureau…only one out of six was really helpful. Two others meant well, but didn’t know the science well enough to be constructive, and the other three were simply unprepared to help in any meaningful way. (p. 587)'

This has been picked up on Bishop Hill, where there is some further discussion of the quality of scientists in the climatology area.  Haunting the Library also has it, and highlights this quote:

'…two [lead authors] on our chapter (one from a developing country and one European) never wrote a word or contributed much to discussions– nevertheless they remained credited. I felt this was unfair on those that actually wrote the text. (p. 35)'

It is not just the IPCC that gives grounds for concern.  I do get the impression that the more strident alarmist scientists are less impressive in several ways that those who are calling for a calmer approach, but that may be because I expect that to be the case.  I think there are also grounds for believing many of the leaders in the CO2 alarm movement are also not of the best that we poor mortals can find amongst us.  I stumbled upon a site the other day which captured quotes from Al Gore, mostly from over 10 years ago around the US presidential election in the year 2000.  Here it is: http://www.gargaro.com/algore.html. One of the links given is to an essay here: http://www.wnd.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=12838 which is particularly trenchant, e.g. commenting on his performance in a TV debate:

'Gore also seems to have a very shaky hold on reality. He keeps stretching it, undoing it, remaking it. His exaggerations, lies, made-up stories, suggest that he ought to be a novelist rather than a politician.

'He is robotic in his loud, assertive campaign slogans, which are supposed to pass for serious argument. The monotonous repetition of the same words and phrases are supposed to leave in the minds of the audience indelible impressions that will make people vote for him.'

And this:

'I believe we saw the real Al Gore in the third debate. Eleanor Clift, unhappy over Gore's performance in the first two debates, told her colleagues on the McLaughlin Group, "Let Gore be Gore." And that's what he was in the third debate. He was sanctimonious, unctuous, overbearing, rude, monotonous, repetitive, smug, belligerent, wooden and unbelievable. He constantly broke the rules of the debate by interrupting Bush. The trouble is that no one can trust Gore's figures or assertions because the label of liar hangs over his head. And yet, many millions will vote for him.

'The dictionary defines a psychopath as "a person suffering from a mental disorder," and it defines hysteria as "a psychiatric condition variously characterized by emotional excitability, excessive anxiety, sensory and motor disturbances." If you observed Gore in the first debate, you saw a man contorting his face, reflecting emotional excitability of an extreme kind. His body language reflected excessive anxiety about his ability to win the debate. His psychopathic behavior indicates that he does suffer from a mental disorder. He is unable to adhere to the truth, to reality. His behavior suggests an obsessive personality, so determined to become President that he is willing to say anything, and perhaps do anything, that will get him there. He does not have the temperament required of a President. Because his word can never be trusted, he is disqualified from the job. '

Now is this genuine insight, or merely vicious snark from a biased commentator during a close-fought election campaign?  More research needed.

But I do note that Gore's 'An Inconvenient Truth' has been distributed to schools throughout the UK, in England by government fiat, in Scotland by an energy company.  I note further that a court in England ruled that the film was so political, that to avoid prosecution under a law against political indoctrination in schools, a list of cautions and examples of major errors had to be provided at every viewing (http://www.newparty.co.uk/articles/inaccuracies-gore.html).

One of Gore's catchphrases is 'the science is settled'.  It seems to me that the science is settled only in the sense that we know we know nothing like enough about the climate system to make useful forecasts over tens and hundreds of years ahead.  Our computer models are puny in the face of a great complexity, and serve only to provide illustrations of how crude models behave when programmed this way and that.  In my own deservedly humble opinion, the scientific case for alarm is not at all convincing.  It follows for me that the wave of political action and alarums around climate is driven by other factors, not least the personalities and inclinations of the leading players.  This is an area which I hope will receive deep and prolonged study, if only to make society more 'resilient' (to borrow a catchword).  In other words, spending some time on personalities is not a distraction, not a search for cheap jibes, but rather is one of the crucial areas for investigation.  As the IPCC sinks in its own quagmire of deceit and manipulation, we want to learn as much as we can about how and why it has been so influential for so long.  Some theories for that are given here, largely asserting that successful propagandising is the key: http://intelligentessays.blogspot.com/2008/03/anthropogenic-global-warming-propaganda.html


In the midst of this swirl of agitation, propaganda, and assertions, schools and educational leaders generally would surely be wiser if they concentrated on basic science, on observations, and on calm reason, rather than thoughtlessly going with the flow and adding to the consternation and confusion, not to mention the fear and destructiveness, by pushing such travesties as 'An Inconvenient Truth' on to the young.  The moral, and the scientific high ground has been occupied by those who see no evidence to justify acute alarm about manmade CO2 in the atmosphere.  Would that the political and educational systems moved there as well.

Note added 23 Mar 2012.  More on sociopaths/psychopaths in politics here and here.

Thursday, 20 January 2011

Climate Scaremongering Antidote: turn green-grim into Grimm-fun

The Australian Climate Madness site has created a new fairy-tale character, the Green Climate Monster:
Now children, thanks to Mr Grimm and others, have long enjoyed scary fairy tales, and these can give them skills which help them spot fairy tales a mile off.  Now General Circulation Models (GCMs) are rather expensive and elaborate devices for producing scary tales for adults.  Maybe the skills of the kids can help those scared adults get a grip of themselves: it's just a fairy tale, Mum, Dad!

Back to ACM on GCMs:

'Anyway, I'd like to introduce this little fella to you (see photo). After many minutes of painstaking research, Australian Climate Madness has decreed that all unusual or severe weather events of whatever nature, anywhere in the world, are solely the mischievous work of the Green Climate Monster (he gets bored easily). The GCM is responsible for the shrinking Arctic ice sheet, the growing Antarctic Ice sheet, advancing glaciers, retreating glaciers, heatwaves, cold spells, mountains of snow, absence of snow, droughts, floods, hurricanes, absence of hurricanes, very windy days, calm days, sunny days, cloudy days, foggy days, El Niño and his twin sister, the seasons, thunderstorms, absence of thunderstorms, excess rainfall, less rainfall, extinction of frogs, discovery of new frogs, fewer polar bears, more polar bears, everything else listed at the Warmlist, and plenty more besides.'

I could see this in a current affairs class - just keep a picture of the Monster on the wall, and stick press-cuttings all around it as the pupils bring them in every month on whatever weather, or other, event is being blamed on 'human-caused global warming', or 'climate change' as it seems to be known for short in the media.  Class discussions could serve to identify the most ludicrous of each crop.

Tuesday, 18 January 2011

Is 'Cuddly Green' a Trojan Horse for 'Nasty Fascist' in our schools?

Preamble
Many good and decent people are very concerned, rightly or wrongly, with 'the environment' in general and with 'climate change' in particular.  I suppose those who read this blog are mostly sceptical about climate alarmism, but I also suppose they, like me, find that most people they know are both 'good and decent' and 'alarmed about climate change attributed to humans'.
The more I study the science and the politics of climate, the less impressed I am with the leaders, and the most active and outspoken, in the scientific and in the political wings of the 'movement to alarm people about their impact on climate'.  There is a lot to be dismayed about.
One immediate impact of these people is to damage industrial economies by forcing expensive and unreliable energy burdens on to them through wind, wave, and biofuels, and neglecting or discouraging the development and improvement of more economic methods such as nuclear fission, or the burning of coal and gas.  
A more alarming, and longer-term, impact is surely to be expected from the deliberate frightening of children in schools with talk of doom and gloom, and of how humans and their industrial technologies are such a problem.
But there is also something there which can, or ought to, frighten adults - especially any who are familiar with the wars and revolutions in or near Europe in the 20th century.  Leftwing movements in the Soviet Union and in Germany in particular led to totalitarian regimes which engaged in destructiveness on a massive and heart-rending scale.  The National Socialists in Germany were particularly emphatic about going back to Nature.  
(An extended essay by John Ray is referenced here in anticipation of any reader puzzled by my conflation of fascism with socialism:  http://ray-dox.blogspot.com/2006/05/american-roots-of-fascism-american.html )

Part One: two essays from Germany 
The following passage, with a little editing, could easily be from the pen of a modern green-activist:
'We recognise that separating humanity from nature, from the whole of life, leads to humankind’s own destruction and to the death of nations. Only through a re-integration of humanity into the whole of nature can our people be made stronger. That is the fundamental point of the biological tasks of our age. Humankind alone is no longer the focus of thought, but rather life as a whole . . . This striving toward connectedness with the totality of life, with nature itself, a nature into which we are born, this is the deepest meaning and the true essence of National Socialist thought.'
These are the words of a Nazi ideologue (1), and are quoted in the study by Peter Staudenmaier entitled 

'Fascist Ecology: The "Green Wing" of the Nazi Party and its Historical Antecedents'


He ends with this warning:

'For all of these reasons, the slogan advanced by many contemporary Greens, "We are neither right nor left but up front," is historically naive and politically fatal. The necessary project of creating an emancipatory ecological politics demands an acute awareness and understanding of the legacy of classical ecofascism and its conceptual continuities with present-day environmental discourse. An 'ecological' orientation alone, outside of a critical social framework, is dangerously unstable. The record of fascist ecology shows that under the right conditions such an orientation can quickly lead to barbarism.'

(1) Ernst Lehmann, Biologischer Wille. Wege und Ziele biologischer Arbeit im neuen Reich, München, 1934, pp. 10-11. Lehmann was a professor of botany who characterised National Socialism as "politically applied biology."

A sister paper, by Janet Biehl,  is entitled

'Ecology' and the Modernization of Fascism in the German Ultra-right'

Part Two: tips for eco-fascists
 There are many links to be found that might help you (Googling 'eco-fascism' alone provides more than 300,000), but here are some aspects captured by a new blog, called 'HauntingTheLibrary', which digs out examples of what has been said or done or otherwise written about in the past, and presents it a modern context.  I frame two of its posts in the context of writing a manual for the modern eco-fascist hellbent on taking control of our lives:
 


'...In 1982 Mustafa Tolba of the United Nations Environment Program excoriated the world’s governments for failing to institute “ecologically sound management” and warned them, in an “official forecast” that if they didn’t mend their ways, “…by the turn of the century, an ecological catastrophe which will witness devastation as complete, as irreversible as any nuclear holocaust…”.  Mustafa Tolba went on to become Executive Director for UNEP.'


' The NASA scientist at the heart of the global warming fiasco seems set to stir more controversy after declaring in an op ed piece for The South China Morning Post and a personally published follow-up that American democracy is not competent to deal with global warming, and communist China now represents the world’s “best hope”. '


There are, no doubt, many more steps required to make the manual complete, but these two seem quite enough to be getting on with.  Teachers should be aware that there is no such thing as a free lunch when it comes to eco-studies, nor to any pushing of the utterly unsubstantiated alarm about human influence on climate.  And be aware that there are extremely sinister forces lurking in the wings, and perhaps also in the human psyche, that need to be watched very closely.

Note added 17 April 2014.  Here is a recent example of the cuddly wing at work in schools:  http://www.wwf.org.uk/what_we_do/working_with_schools/our_work_with_schools/

Monday, 17 January 2011

A Responsible Adult ,and Hugely Distinguished Atmospheric Scientist, Speaks On Climate

The irresponsible hysteria (what other word would do?) of a handful of climate scientists and computer modellers, amplified ten-thousand fold by the slick PR of the IPCC, has been a degrading spectacle over the past 30 years or so.  Their panic, whether it be real or pretended, has even penetrated into our schools, despite the duty of responsible adults to protect the young from such ugly, ignorant, and destructive scaremongering.

Yet there are many real scientists, real men, real women - people accustomed to thinking for themselves and seeking truth, not public acclaim, nor the safety and the luxury of the mass-bandwagon, who have been speaking out against the case for panic.  One of the most distinguished of these is Professor Lindzen of MIT.  He has just published a short piece on the GWPF website which deserves to be printed and displayed for discussion in every classroom, and in every staffroom, in the land.  Here is an extract:

'The notion of a static, unchanging climate is foreign to the history of the earth or any other planet with a fluid envelope. The fact that the developed world went into hysterics over changes in global mean temperature anomaly of a few tenths of a degree will astound future generations. Such hysteria simply represents the scientific illiteracy of much of the public, the susceptibility of the public to the substitution of repetition for truth, and the exploitation of these weaknesses by politicians, environmental promoters, and, after 20 years of media drum beating, many others as well. Climate is always changing. We have had ice ages and warmer periods when alligators were found in Spitzbergen. Ice ages have occurred in a hundred thousand year cycle for the last 700 thousand years, and there have been previous periods that appear to have been warmer than the present despite CO2 levels being lower than they are now. More recently, we have had the medieval warm period and the little ice age. During the latter, alpine glaciers advanced to the chagrin of overrun villages. Since the beginning of the 19th Century these glaciers have been retreating. Frankly, we don’t fully understand either the advance or the retreat.

For small changes in climate associated with tenths of a degree, there is no need for any external cause. The earth is never exactly in equilibrium. The motions of the massive oceans where heat is moved between deep layers and the surface provides variability on time scales from years to centuries. Recent work (Tsonis et al, 2007), suggests that this variability is enough to account for all climate change since the 19th Century.'

Source: http://thegwpf.org/opinion-pros-a-cons/2229-richard-lindzen-a-case-against-precipitous-climate-action.html
May I presume upon my readers, and ask them to help circulate this more widely? 

Thursday, 13 January 2011

Climate Scaremongering Antidote: expose the media manipulation by pressure groups

Donna Laframboise has found a website masquerading as a source of science news when in fact it is merely a conduit for WWF press releases.

She writes:

'I recently stumbled across a website called ScienceCentric.com. It’s slick and professional-looking. If I were a high school student writing an essay I could be forgiven for thinking I had arrived at an authoritative and trustworthy source of information.
ScienceCentric.com claims to provide:
Breaking news about the latest scientific discoveries in the fields of physics, chemistry, geology and palaeontology, biology, environment, astronomy, health, and technology'
 She discovered:

'The “article” that first rang my alarm bells is dated July 2007. It begins with:
The world’s top experts have just confirmed that Arctic warming is continuing its ravages of polar bear populations. [bold added]
In the very next sentence, however, it becomes clear that these supposed top experts are actually affiliated with an activist group, the International Union of the Conservation of Nature – which was founded in 1948 “as the world’s first global environmental organization.”
Even worse, the third, fourth, and fifth sentence in the ScienceCentric “article” are all quotes from a World Wildlife Fund spokesperson. At the very bottom of the article, this line appears:
Source: WWF
Clicking that link reveals that ScienceCentric.com has been representing World Wildlife Fund blog postings and press releases as bona fide science news stories since June 2007.'

The website she discovered is apparently based in Bulgaria, and I presume it was deliberately set up as part of campaigning efforts to push the WWF line.  UK newspapers such as The Scotsman are known for essentially re-printing WWF press releases, or quoting WWF 'soundbites' without challenge (try Googling 'WWF The Scotsman' to find, amidst the clutter, many examples), and there are no doubt many other victims of WWF PR success in the media all over the world.

The WWF was taken over long ago and diverted from caring about world wildlife into campaigning against the interests of humanity, an action which of course will also harm wildlife in due course since it is the industrialised nations who have done most to preserve and protect it.   The UK Met Office is now led by the man who helped transform the WWF, a Robert Napier, and he is apparently hellbent on replicating that performance in his new post.

The Met Office is now something of a popular laughing-stock in the UK, but its ongoing contributions to fueling climate alarmism are no laughing matter.  It incidently caused a great deal of loss in the UK and elsewhere by leaning on its computers for forecasts of volcanic dust movements which grounded commerciial aviation for days at a time.  Subsequent observations taken by aircraft - real data, in other words - showed dramatically less cause for alarm, and in due course flights were resumed everywhere.  This little cameo of computer-based alarmism leading to societal loss is a micro-version of what the same mentality is achieving on a much larger scale with announcements on climate.

Let me finish by repeating an earlier quote from the post which inspired this one:

'If I were a high school student writing an essay I could be forgiven for thinking I had arrived at an authoritative and trustworthy source of information.'

It thus becomes imperative that teachers urge their pupils to clearly identify their sources of information, and to encourage them to dig a little deeper in case they find powerful vested interests, such as those of wealthy multinational corporations like the WWF.  They may still have to mouth their conclusions in order to pass exams, but they will at least not be fooled into actually believing them.

Wednesday, 12 January 2011

Another 30 years of climate scaremongering in our schools?

Many times over the past year or so it has seemed that the adoption and corruption of climate science by those intent on profiting politically and/or financially by the proliferation of scary headlines they could generate and exploit, was at last on the way out.  But how long is the half-life of this astonishing, and dismaying, phenomenon as it goes into decay?  (and how might that be measured?).

Tim Ball talks in a recent post of '30 lost years' in climate science, as it has been taken over by people who know relatively little about it:
'We now have a generation (30 years) of people teaching, researching, or running government that has little knowledge because of lack of fundamental education. Because of them, the public is[are] ill informed, don’t understand the problem, and don‘t know the questions to ask. Correcting the education process will take time because there are insufficient people with the knowledge or expertise. Correcting and widening the research functions will take longer because of removing or re-educating current personnel and a lack of qualified replacements. Even if achieved, success is unlikely.'

This is reinforced by the events such as the appointment of a Chris Mooney to the board of the American Geophysical Union(AGU).  Here he is quoted as wanting scientists to be ninjas:

'Can scientists become "Deadly Ninjas of Science Communication"?  That was proposed by Chris Mooney, author of The Republican War Against Science," and a member of the board of directors of the American Geophysical Union.  Mooney advocated this idea in a presentation at the Union's December 13-17 fall meeting in San Francisco. 


Mooney is concerned that global warming skeptics are getting the upper hand in the ongoing debate.  Mooney has an unquestioning belief that disaster will overtake the world if we don't mend our CO2-emitting ways.  Many other speakers at the meeting, like Mooney, suggested that if scientists improved their communications skills, the skeptics could be defeated.


At the same fall meeting four years ago, Al Gore spoke to ten thousand assembled scientists.  The scientists treated him like a rock star.  Why would the scientists love Al Gore?  His movie, An Inconvenient Truth, was full of scientific errors.  But this is about not biting the hand that feeds you.  When Al Gore spreads global warming hysteria, financial and political support for climate science increases.  Scientists become guests on TV shows instead of lab drones.'

Roger Pielke Jr. comments on the appointment of Mooney as follows:

'One factor might be seen in a recent action of the American Geophysical Union -- another big US science association: AGU recently appointed Chris Mooney to its Board.  I am sure that Chris is a fine fellow, but appointing an English major who has written divisively about the "Republican War on Science" to help AGU oversee "science communication" is more than a little ironic, and unlikely to attract many Republican scientists to the institution, perhaps even having the opposite effect.  To the extent that AAAS and AGU endorse the Democratic policy agenda, or just appear to do so, it reflects their role not as arbiters of knowledge claims, but rather as political actors.'

and he expresses concern over the ability of scientific institutions to withstand such strong political engagement:

'Many observers are so wrapped up in their own partisan battles that they either don't care that science is being associated with one political party or they somehow think that through such politicization they will once and for all win the partisan battles.  They won't. Political parties are far more robust than institutions of science. Institutions of science need help to survive intact partisan political battles.  The blogosphere and activist scientists and journalists offer little help.'

A far more appropriately and well-qualified appointment has just been made to the Tyndall Centre for Climate Research in the UK, where a Professor Corinne Le Quéré is to take over from Kevin Anderson.  He had no background in climatology, nor in climate science (one site describes his background thus: 'Kevin is a qualified marine engineer and has 12 years industrial experience, principally in the petrochemical industry. He is currently a non-executive director of Greenstone Carbon Management – a London based company advising leading firms and public bodies on how to manage their carbon emissions and is commissioner on the Welsh Assembly Government’s ‘Climate Change Committee’.').

Will Professor Le Quéré be any better?  She seems to have surfed on various IPCC waves to get to where she is today, and that is of course very discouraging for those of us who regard the IPCC as suspect, and not worthy of our trust:

'As UEA Chair of Climate Change Science and Policy, Corinne Le Quéré is a physicist by training, and conducts research on the interactions between climate change and the carbon cycle. She recently led a team that uncovered the weakening of the Southern Ocean CO2 sink in response to human-induced climate change. Professor Le Quéré lectures internationally, and supervises postgraduate students and researchers at UEA.

Professor Le Quéré said of her appointment: “The Tyndall Centre is a young and vibrant institute with a highly respected international reputation. I look forward to maintaining and enhancing Tyndall’s renown and exploring new avenues of research.”

Other research achievements of Professor Le Quéré include her Lead Authorship of the 3rd, 4th and 5th Assessments of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment.

She co-chairs the Global Carbon Project, established in 2001 as a non-governmental organization that fosters International research on the carbon cycle and publishes annual updates of the global emissions and sinks of carbon dioxide.

Prof Le Quéré is originally from Canada. She completed a PhD in oceanography at the University Paris VI, an MS in Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences from McGill University and a BSc. in physics from the University of Montréal. She has conducted research at Princeton University in the United States and at the Max-Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry in Germany.'



So, will it take another 30 years or more for the tertiary institutions to get over the 'Great Climate Scare'?  How does that place our primary and secondary schools?  When will teachers appear who have not been exposed since their own schooldays to alarmist propaganda from their own teachers and mentors?

I find my optimism jolted a little by Tim Ball's article.  If he is right, there is a long road ahead.  How long did the relevant scientific institutions in the former Soviet Union take to recover from the Lysenko period?    How much societal loss did it cause in the meantime?  Perhaps the excursion of climate science into political alarmism is different?  Perhaps the internet will help clear up the mess more quickly than otherwise by facilitating the exchange of deeper and clearer thinking?

Interesting times.

Note added 21 Jan 2011.  The article by Tim Ball referenced above contains some errors which have been corrected or commented on here:  http://canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/32322 .  They mostly concern comments on a  Dr Weaver, none of which have been quoted in my post above.
Note added 18 May 2011.  A new essay by Dr Ball entitled 'Corruption of Climate Science Has Created 30 Lost Years' has been posted here: http://drtimball.com/2011/corruption-of-climate-science-has-created-30-lost-years/

Tuesday, 11 January 2011

Climate Scaremongering Antidote: dry humour, perceptive cartoons

 (1) Hat-tip: Lubos Motl (http://motls.blogspot.com/2011/01/global-warming-panic-explained.html)
This little cartoon is packed with insights and would make an excellent 'conversation piece' for senior pupils:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cdxaxJNs15s&feature=player_embedded

(2) Here's another, a 'conversation between two environmentalists':

Also jam-packed with insights!  Many of us will have had conversations of this kind.

Monday, 10 January 2011

Misleading temperature graph (guess in which direction) used by UK Exam Board


'Britain’s largest exam board has been accused of “brainwashing” pupils by forcing them to use an inaccurate temperature graph that exaggerates the scale of global warming.'

 An article published in The Telegraph today asserts that the Assessments and Qualifications Alliance (AQA), the UK largest exam board is guilty of the following:

Ice core temperature reconstructions ignored.
Medieval Warm Period downplayed.
Current world average temperature exaggerated.
Most recent Ice Age ignored.
Children's extbook from 1990 used a source of temperature chart

Extract from article in the Daily Telegraph (UK) today:

'Kato Harris, head of Geography at South Hampstead High School in north London, has written to the exam board to highlight the errors.
He said: "It is demoralising and frustrating when we are trying to be accurate, rigorous teachers, imparting to our pupils the latest scientific knowledge, only for the exam board apparently to show ignorance of scientific developments in the last 15 years."
The graph published in the exam paper was titled ‘Timeline of the mean world temperatures over the last million years’, even though no such record exists.
Pupils were asked to mark with an X the “recent rapid rise in global temperatures”, as well as the coldest period.
AQA said the graph was simply meant to show “generalised trends” in global temperature and claimed that it displayed a "similar" pattern to the ice core reconstruction.
But Dr Benny Peiser, director of the Global Warming Policy Foundation and a social anthropologist at Liverpool John Moores University, said the graph contained “shocking inaccuracies”.
“I have no idea where they have got their data from, but it’s completely wrong. The graph exaggerates the case of global warming and it shows scientific illiteracy.
“I think this is highly misleading and the fact that it was included in an exam papers just shows how suspicious we should be with a lot of the information presented to students.
“There is a lot of pressure on schools and exam boards from government to educate our children in this way, but if we want to have a well educated population children need to know how science works, and they shouldn’t be brainwashed with misleading information.”'

 Link to the article: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/environment/climatechange/8210501/Exam-board-accused-of-brainwashing-pupils-with-inaccurate-climate-graph.html


Hat-tip: http://tomnelson.blogspot.com/

Sunday, 9 January 2011

Climate Scaremongering Antidote: Fisking fearful, false, and facile alarmism in the mass media

Viscount Monckton has done sterling work in this area over the years.  This new piece is available in pdf from the SPPI website (http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/originals/q2010_was_the_warmest_year_on_recordq.html ) and is a response to a specious article in The Australian earlier this month.  Eco-journalist-campaigners have been organising themselves to produce just this sort of stuff in response to public indifference or even hostility to their previous efforts to save the planet (e.g. http://earthjournalism.net/about-us ).  Their apparent aim is to proselytise rather than investigate; they want to win more compliance to the policies dreamt of by CO2 plotters and patsies alike rather than deepen or broaden our grasp of the issues.

Here is an extract:

'Michael Steketee, writing in The Australian in January 2011, echoed the BBC (whose journalists’ pension fund is heavily weighted towards “green” “investments”) and other climate-extremist vested interests in claiming that 2010 was the warmest year on record worldwide. Mr. Steketee’s short article makes two dozen questionable assertions, which either require heavy qualification or are downright false. His assertions will be printed in bold face: the truth will appear in Roman face.

1. BASED ON PRELIMINARY DATA TO NOVEMBER 30, SEA SURFACE TEMPERATURES AROUND AUSTRALIA WERE THE WARMEST ON RECORD LAST YEAR, AS WERE THOSE FOR THE PAST DECADE.
The record only began ten decades ago. As for sea temperatures, they are less significant for analyzing “global warming” than estimated total ocean heat content. A recent paper by Professors David Douglass and Robert Knox of Rochester University, New York, has established that – contrary to various climate-extremist assertions – there has been no net accumulation of “missing energy” in the form of heat in the oceans worldwide in the six years since ocean heat content was first reliably measured by the 3000 automated ARGO bathythermographs in 2003. This finding implies that the amount of warming we can expect from even quite a large increase in CO2 concentration is far less than the IPCC and other climate-extremist groups maintain.

2. THE WORLD METEOROLOGICAL ORGANISATION SAYS THE YEAR TO THE END OF OCTOBER WAS THE WARMEST SINCE INSTRUMENTAL CLIMATE RECORDS STARTED IN 1850 – 0.55 C° ABOVE THE 1961-90 AVERAGE OF 14 C°.
It is easy to cherry-pick periods of less than a calendar year and say they establish a new record. The cherry-picking of the first nine months of 2010 is particularly unacceptable, since that period was dominated by a substantial El Niño Southern Oscillation, a sudden alteration in the pattern of ocean currents worldwide that leads to warmer weather for several months all round the world. The last few months of the year, carefully excluded from Mr. Steketee’s statement, showed the beginnings of a La Niña event, which tends largely to reverse the effect of its preceding El Niño and make the world cooler. Indeed, the calendar year from January to December 2010, according to the reliable RSS and UAH satellite records, was not the warmest on record. Besides, what is important is how fast the world is warming. In fact, the rate of warming from 1975-2001, at 0.16 C° per decade, was the fastest rate to be sustained for more than a decade in the 160-year record, but exactly the same rate occurred from 1860-1880 and again from 1910-1940, when we could not possibly have had anything to do with it. Since late 2001 there has been virtually no “global warming” at all.'

The remaining 22 pieces of sophistry addressed are:

3. THE LAST DECADE ALSO WAS THE WARMEST ON RECORD.


4. THE WORLD IS NOT COOLER COMPARED TO 1998.


5. THE TRENDS HAPPEN TO FOLLOW CLOSELY THE PREDICTIONS OVER THE PAST 40 YEARS OF TEMPERATURE RISES RESULTING FROM INCREASED GREENHOUSE GAS EMISSIONS.


6. MOST SCIENTISTS AGREE THAT DOUBLING THE CARBON DIOXIDE IN THE ATMOSPHERE IS LIKELY TO LEAD TO WARMING OF 2-3 C°.

7. WARMING OF 2-3 C° RISKS SIGNIFICANT ENVIRONMENTAL AND ECONOMIC DAMAGE.


8. GREENHOUSE GAS CONCENTRATIONS ROSE BY 27.5% FROM 1990-2009.


9. ARCTIC SEA ICE SHRANK TO ITS THIRD-LOWEST AREA IN THE SATELLITE RECORDS, OFFSET ONLY SLIGHTLY BY GROWTH IN ANTARCTIC SEA ICE.


10. GLOBAL SNOW COVER IS FALLING, INFERENTIALLY BECAUSE OF MAN’S INFLUENCE.
I
11. GLOBAL SEA LEVELS ARE RISING, INFERENTIALLY BECAUSE OF MAN’S INFLUENCE.

12. MUNICH RE SAYS 2010 SAW THE SECOND-HIGHEST NUMBER OF NATURAL CATASTROPHES SINCE 1980, 90% OF THEM WEATHER-RELATED.


13. THE TEMPERATURE OF 46.4 C° IN MELBOURNE ONE SATURDAY IN 2010 WAS MORE THAN 3 C° ABOVE THE PREVIOUS HIGHEST FOR FEBRUARY.


14. IN MOSCOW, JULY 2010 WAS MORE THAN 2 C° ABOVE THE PREVIOUS TEMPERATURE RECORD, AND TEMPERATURE ON 29 JULY WAS 38.2 C°.


15. THE HEATWAVE AND FOREST FIRES IN CENTRAL RUSSIA KILLED AT LEAST 56,000, MAKING IT THE WORST NATURAL DISASTER IN RUSSIA’S HISTORY.


16. IN PAKISTAN, 1769 WERE KILLED IN THE COUNTRY’S WORST-EVER FLOODS.


17. THE HURRICANE SEASON IN THE NORTH ATLANTIC WAS ONE OF THE MOST SEVERE IN THE LAST CENTURY.


18. EVEN CAUTIOUS SCIENTISTS TEND TO SAY WE CAN BLAME MANMADE CLIMATE CHANGE.


19. CLIMATE CHANGE HAS CONTRIBUTED TO THE 20% DECLINE IN RAINFALL IN PARTS OF SOUTHERN AUSTRALIA OVER THE PAST 40 YEARS.


20. THERE IS STRONG EVIDENCE THAT “GLOBAL WARMING” MADE THE BUSH-FIRES AROUND MELBOURNE WORSE.


21. THERE HAS BEEN A SUCCESSION OF EXTRAORDINARY HEATWAVES, WITH BIG JUMPS IN RECORD TEMPERATURES, STARTING IN EUROPE IN 2003 AND CONTINUING ALL AROUND THE WORLD, CULMINATING IN RUSSIA LAST YEAR. MORE THAN 17 COUNTRIES BROKE THEIR MAXIMUM TEMPERATURE RECORDS IN 2010, AND “YOU REALLY HAVE TO STRAIN CREDIBILITY TO SAY IT HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH CLIMATE CHANGE.”


22. FOR 20 YEARS MORE HOT-WEATHER THAN COLD-WEATHER TEMPERATURE RECORDS HAVE BEEN SET.


23. EVEN IF GREENHOUSE-GAS EMISSIONS WERE TO STABILIZE AT LITTLE MORE THAN TODAY’S LEVELS, 2 C° OF FURTHER WARMING WILL OCCUR – FOUR TIMES THE INCREASE OVER THE PAST 30 YEARS.

24. ADAPTATION TO THE CONSEQUENCES OF “GLOBAL WARMING” WILL GET MORE DIFFICULT THE LONGER WE DELAY.


There is every chance that each and every one of these will be repeated one way or another by other 'eco-journalists' hellbent on their campaigning.  How many are already in school textbooks or other educational media? 

Hat-tip: http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/01/09/monckton-skewers-steketee/

Note added 10 Jan 2010: Steketee makes a pretty feeble reply to Monckton here:  http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/climate/mike-steketees-response-to-christopher-monckton/story-e6frg6xf-1225985171179  His arguments are mostly to the effect that the sources he quotes uncritically in his piece (e.g. WMO) are not him, yet he used them in support of his alarmism.  At best he is naively relaying misleading information, while refusing any responsibility for doing so.

Later on the 10th: Australian Climate Madness plots a middle course, and thinks Monckton over-reacted in some of the points: http://www.australianclimatemadness.com/2011/01/moncktons-own-goal/

Late on the 11th: Monckton responds to ACM.  Truly Steketee is in over his head, and ACM blundered too ('So, Simon-from-Sydney, take some trouble to get your facts right before you accuse me of scoring an own goal. You say you don’t think I should have responded to Steketee’s nonsense at all: however, it is precisely because he and his ilk have been peddling trashy, largely truth-free extremism for years that so many feeble-minded governments have bought into the climate scare. Sometimes it is necessary to hit back with the facts, even if those who got them wrong then complain - quite inappropriately - that they were "misrepresented". – Monckton of Brenchley'): http://www.australianclimatemadness.com/2011/01/lord-monckton-responds-to-acm/

Friday, 7 January 2011

Climate Scaremongering Antidote: poking fun at the CO2 Plotters

Or, 'taking the piss', as it is more vulgarly put.  There certainly is plenty of scope for it.  Here is a beauty:
Source: cartoonsbyjosh.com
Inspiration: comment posted by PB on Bishop Hill's site (http://www.bishop-hill.net/blog/2011/1/4/josh-64.html)

Now the speaker of the original line in the play (Richard III) was a bit of a conniving, scheming, nasty sort of a chap, and caused a great deal of harm.

Would the Bard have been inspired to do a play around some of the characters in the Great CO2 Plot?

Or, perhaps a Chaucer might have penned some Copenhagenury Tales?

Or can we still take a lighthearted view, despite the awful waste of spirit and resources due to the Plot, and think of it as material for a new Gilbert & Sullivan?

Climate Scaremongering Antidote: articulating a reality-based view of climate

Scaremongering using 'climate change' to win power and influence relies almost totally on the predictions of computer models widely agreed to be unfit for making predictions about climate. The articulation of a reality-based view of climate science and/or climate politics, one that puts computer models of climate in their place (and that place will be more like a toolbox than a pedestal) may help clarify the nature of computer-based climate scaremongering in our educational systems and elsewhere.  Here is one succinct shot at that which I came across recently, and which I reproduce in full with the permission of the author. He concludes that we should be more worried about the ignorance and influence of key promoters of the scaremongering:

'Should we be worried, very worried?

By Dr. Gordon Fulks
 
From near record high to near record low temperatures this November in the Pacific Northwest, from relatively warm ocean conditions and ‘dead zones’ to relatively cold ocean conditions and fabulous salmon runs off our Pacific Coast, from an unusually cold winter to an unusually hot summer in Russia, from near record low Arctic sea ice to near record high Antarctic sea ice, our climate displays wide variability. But an army of psychologists, journalists, and even scientists make sure that the warm swings they deem alarming get the greatest attention. These propagandists know that the selling of Global Warming is all about perception not reality.

If the data will not support their storyline for another UN climate conference in Cancun, Mexico, an army of data manipulators stand ready. They rework averages to show continued warming during the last decade when honest assessments show flat or slightly declining temperatures. Some can be relied upon to say that 2010 was the warmest year “ever,” when honest scientists say that the El Nino this year was very similar to 1998. Also, the recent warm period was not as warm as the previous Medieval Warm Period, something Alarmists deny ever existed.

The simple truth is that there is nothing unusual going on today, let alone anything related to human carbon dioxide emissions. Climate variations are expected on a planet with vast oceans and atmosphere that are never in complete equilibrium. Climate variations are expected with a Sun that varies slightly in total solar irradiance, varies more in x-ray and ultraviolet output, and varies substantially in magnetic irregularities which modulate galactic cosmic rays. Climate variations are also expected in a solar system with large planets like Jupiter that alter the earth’s orbit and produce the huge climate variations called Ice Ages.

But how is someone who never studied science going to figure out who is telling the truth?

Science is not what I say, just because I have a good education and long experience. It is all about honesty, logic, and evidence. The simplest solution is to look out the window. The British Met Office used its new $50 million super computer to predict a mild winter in Britain, 3.4 F warmer than last year. So far, the reality is record breaking cold, heavy snow, and paralyzing ice!

But what if the New York Times (NYT), President Obama, the National Academy of Sciences (NAS), the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (UNIPCC), Yale University, and the Oregonian all say to be worried, very worried?

Perhaps you should question their expertise. Thomas Freidman of the NYT frequently calls for action on climate change, but has no expertise and relies on a notorious propagandist. President Obama relies on scientists whom he funds to give him the answers he wants. The NAS is run to support government programs by an electrical engineer. He discovered that Global Warming is far more lucrative than electrical engineering. The UNIPCC is run by a railroad engineer who writes romance novels. Yale University promoters are really psychologists who want you to believe that they are climate experts when their real expertise is propaganda. The Oregonian relies on all the above. The interlocking relationships are highly incestuous, with vast conflicts of interest and/or little scientific expertise.

Among scientists, belief in Global Warming comes down to cold cash. Those who benefit most from government largesse (about $100 billion to date) are typically true believers, while independent scientists easily spot the scam. This creates a split based on age and experience. Young scientists like Juliane Fry of Reed College, who professed her belief in an Oregonian Op-Ed, are eager for fame, funding, and tenure, all of which are more likely if they support Global Warming. Older scientists like Richard Lindzen of MIT, perhaps the greatest meteorologist alive today, oppose climate hysteria. They built their fame on an approach now considered quaint: the Scientific Method.

Among Global Warming advocates there is occasional candor about their real goals. Christiana Figueres, the new executive secretary of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, said of the UN climate efforts: “This is the greatest societal and economic transformation that the world has ever seen.”

Global Warming is about politics not legitimate science. Ms. Figueres calls herself a “global climate change analyst.” Her formal education in climate science consists of Al Gore’s training program to promote “An Inconvenient Truth.”

That should worry everyone!


Gordon J. Fulks, Ph.D. lives in Corbett ... He holds a doctorate in physics from the University of Chicago, Laboratory for Astrophysics and Space Research.'

A similar piece has also been published on OregonLive ( http://www.oregonlive.com/opinion/index.ssf/2010/12/climate_science_the_real_reaso_1.html). I came across it on ICECAP (http://icecap.us/index.php/go/political-climate/P9/) from where a pdf version is available.

Monday, 3 January 2011

Poisoning the children's minds with climate scares: will that educational tide be on the turn in 2011?

We have seen an astonishing 40 years of scaremongering triggered by a few irresponsible scientists whose computer models became so vividly real for them that they abandoned basic adult responsibilities in their consequent public agitations.  After a brief dalliance with the possibility of the onset of the next glaciation, their efforts turned to warming, encouraged no doubt by the remarkable annual increases of CO2 recorded at Mona Loa.  They devised models to give CO2 a more important role in climate than observations and properly conducted historical reconstructions support.  The models do this by means of an hypothesised positive feedback involving water vapour, a feedback which is implausible from our knowledge of atmospheric history, and unconfirmed by recent observations, not least of air temperatures which fail to show the tropospheric 'hotspot' predicted by the models.  The 'settled science' of CO2 applies merely to its radiative properties, since the impact of these on the climate system is far from settled, with expert estimates ranging from an overall slight cooling, to a slight warming from projected increases in ambient CO2 over the next hundred years or so.  The apocalyptic stuff requires those computer models and their novel feedbacks.  Models which are mere toys in the face of the immense complexity of the system they refer to.  Models fit only to illustrate some aspects of speculations about the climate amongst relevant professionals, and not nearly good enough to warrant the widespread alarm they have been used to support.

It seems to me that adults, and in particular professionals, have a moral responsibility to avoid such scaremongering, and in particular to protect school-age children from it.  The temptations to pursue it for financial and political gain, or even for the pursuit of publicity and public attention as ends in themselves, are obvious and in part explain the enthusiastic adoption of climate scares by powerful individuals and organisations keen to grow in power and influence.  That they have dramatically succeeded in this is one of the most interesting features of the current scare, and one which is surely worthy of deep study in many disciplines if we are to have any hope of reducing our vulnerability to such exploitation.

While the media/political class chattering in and around climate will no doubt continue into the indefinite future, perhaps continuing the 20th century tradition of alternating, on an approximately 30 year cycle, between cold and hot dooms. (Certainly the recent cold weather over most of the northern temperature latitudes has seen more talk of ice ages, 'little' or otherwise.)  Or, the talk may become more nuanced, and less vulnerable to refutation, by deploying less specific threats such as 'climate change' or 'climate disruption', giving the agitators scope for pushing their 'cause' on the back of the inevitable excursions of weather events near or beyond previously recorded extremes.  Attempts have been made to make this particular spin, but their impact seems limited, presumably because of the huge prior success in promoting the warming motif.

The establishment (media, political classes, academia, governments, the EU, the UN, major NGOs and other multinational corporations) has bought wholeheartedly into climate alarm, some no doubt for genuine and honest reasons, based on trust in the pontifications of erstwhile respected bodies such as the Royal Societies of Edinburgh and London, or indeed of the once 'dull and dowdy' Met Office, now transformed with the help of a WWF activist into an important exponent of 'climatism'.  They make for a wealthy and powerful force driving and/or riding the tide of alarmist opinion about climate.  It might seem futile to resist it.

But what else can we do?  Will it self-destruct?  The case for alarm over human impacts on climate is so thin, so tenuous, that it seems doomed to collapse from its own absurdity.  The last year or so, from Climategate onwards, has seen much to encourage this view, aided and abetted by the wacky sense of humour of the weather gods who produced the Gore Effect so many times, and, now, another winter on the cold side over very extensive areas in the northern hemisphere.

Unfortunately the alarmist-virus is out and into the educational bloodstream, threatening to produce more and more demoralised and frightened children.  At the very least, we who look on appalled at its spread, can try to find and encourage antibodies wherever and whenever they appear.  To mix-in the earlier metaphor, the tide may be turned earlier in some places than in others.  Variability is, after all, all around us.