The Vatican gets involved in climate change

From Scripps:

Vatican Science Panel Calls Attention to the Threat of Glacial Melt

Pontifical Academy of Sciences working group of leading scientists to present report to Pope Benedict XVITibet's Kyetrak Glacier in 1921 and in 2009. Photo credits: (1921) Courtesy of Royal Geographical Society,  (2009) Courtesy of Glacier Works

Scripps Institution of Oceanography / University of California, San Diego

A panel of some of the world’s leading climate and glacier scientists co-chaired by a Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UC San Diego researcher issued a report today commissioned by the Vatican’s Pontifical Academy of Sciences citing the moral imperative before society to properly address climate change.

The co-authors of “Fate of Mountain Glaciers in the Anthropocene” list numerous examples of glacial decline around the world and the evidence linking that decline to human-caused changes in climate and air pollution. The threat to the ways of life of people dependent upon glaciers and snow packs for water supplies compels immediate action to mitigate the effects of climate change and to adapt to what changes are happening now and are projected to happen in the future.

V. Ramanathan
V. Ramanathan

“We are committed to ensuring that all inhabitants of this planet receive their daily bread, fresh air to breathe and clean water to drink as we are aware that, if we want justice and peace, we must protect the habitat that sustains us,” the authors write in a declaration prefacing the report. “The believers among us ask God to grant us this wish.”

Scripps Climate and Atmospheric Scientist Veerabhadran Ramanathan co-chaired the working group with Nobel Laureate Paul Crutzen, formerly affiliated with Scripps and Lennart Bengtsson, former head of the European weather forecasting center. The group also included Nobel Laureate Carlo Rubbia, former director general of the CERN Laboratory. Among the rest of the 24 authors are Lonnie Thompson of Ohio State University, Wilfried Haeberli from Switzerland, Georg Kaser from Austria and Anil Kulkarni from India, considered among the world’s foremost experts on glacial change. Former Scripps Director Charles Kennel and Scripps Professor of Atmospheric Chemistry Lynn Russell are also members of the working group.

“The widespread loss of snow and ice in the mountain glaciers is one of the most visible changes attributable to global climate change. The disintegration of many small glaciers in the Himalayas is most disturbing to me since this region serves as the water tower of Asia and since both the greenhouse gases and air pollutants like soot and ozone contribute to the melting,” said Ramanathan, who has been a member of the Pontifical Academy of Sciences since 2004.

Report authors met at the Vatican from April 2 to April 4, 2011 under the invitation of Chancellor Marcelo Sanchez Sorondo of the pontifical academy. The report was issued by the Vatican today and will be presented to Pope Benedict XVI.

Though scientists usually refrain from proposing action, Ramanathan said the circumstances warranted advancing suggestions from the working group. The authors recommend pursuit of three measures: immediate reduction of worldwide carbon dioxide emissions, reduction of concentrations of warming air pollutants such as soot, ozone, methane and hydroflurocarbons by up to 50 percent, and preparation to adapt to climate changes that society will not be able to mitigate.

Main Rongbuk Glacier on Mount Everest in 1921 and 2007. It experienced  average vertical glacier loss of 101 meters (331 feet) between 1921 and 2008. Photo credits: (1921) Courtesy of Royal Geographical Society,  (2007) Courtesy of Glacier Works.
Main Rongbuk Glacier on Mount Everest in 1921 and 2007. It experienced average vertical glacier loss of 101 meters (331 feet) between 1921 and 2008. Photo credits: (1921) Courtesy of Royal Geographical Society, (2007) Courtesy of Glacier Works.

The report title refers to the term coined by Crutzen to describe what is considered a new geologic epoch that began when the impacts of mankind on the planet became a major factor in environmental and climate changes.

“The recent changes observed in glacial behavior are due to a complex mix of causal factors that include greenhouse gas forcing together with large scale emissions of dark soot particles and dust in ‘brown clouds’, and the associated changes in regional atmospheric energy and moisture content, all of which result in significant warming at higher altitudes, not least in the Himalayas,” the authors write.

“Changes of mountain glaciers all around the world are rapid and impacts are expected to be detrimental, particularly in the high mountains of South America and Asia,” said Kaser, of the Institute for Meteorology and Geophysics at the University of Innsbruck. “Yet, our understanding about glacier changes in these regions is still limited and ambitious and joint efforts are required to respond to these problems. With its report, the pontifical academy contributes considerably to raising awareness.”

“Glaciers are one of our most visible evidences of global climate change,” added Thompson. “They integrate many climate variables in the Earth system. Their loss is readily apparent and they have no political agenda. Glaciers remind us of the stunning beauty of nature and in turn the urgency of doing everything in our power to protect it.”

The authors conclude: “We appeal to all nations to develop and implement, without delay, effective and fair policies to reduce the causes and impacts of climate change on communi¬ties and ecosystems, including mountain glaciers and their watersheds, aware that we all live in the same home. By acting now, in the spirit of common but differentiated responsibility, we accept our duty to one another and to the stewardship of a planet blessed with the gift of life.”

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215 thoughts on “The Vatican gets involved in climate change

  1. It always bothers the heck out of me when churches, especially the mother of all churches, the Catholic church, get involved in politics. Their commission was, is, and always will be to preach the Gospel. That’s all. And it’s the only thing that they do well. I wish they’d just stick to it. When they get involved in politics, “social justice”, or science, to name a few, it always works against them in the end.

  2. Pontifical Academy of Sciences working group 1632:
    “The idea that the Sun is central to the cosmos, and has an effect on the Earth is heretical, ridiculous, and we shall imprison the man advocating this theory for life without remission or medical attention.”

    Pontifical Academy of Sciences working group 2011:
    “The recent changes observed in glacial behavior are due to a complex mix of causal factors that include greenhouse gas forcing together with large scale emissions of dark soot particles and dust in ‘brown clouds’, and the associated changes in regional atmospheric energy and moisture content, all of which result in significant warming”

    “If anyone tries to say it’s the sun, then they should remember how we deal with people like that” they added.

  3. I’m not religious, but I’m pretty sure Jesus said something along the lines of “the birds don’t worry about where they’re next meal comes from, and neither should you. Instead place your faith in God, and He will provide”, except of coarse he put it far more eloquently.

    Following this reasoning, it seems like those of faith wouldn’t try to fix climate change, but instead have faith that God will protect those of his children He wishes to protect.

  4. “We are committed to ensuring that all inhabitants of this planet receive their daily bread, fresh air to breathe and clean water to drink “.
    No one can argue with that. That is one of the worst drawbacks of the CAGW scaremongering because too much farmland now grows crops for ethanol production.

    The next lines are a worry though. They start to call for social justice and sustainability. These are weasel words for socialist control. Social justice means a small group think they can decide better than the courts or parliament. Sustainability is the term used to put the power o decision into the hands of the same small group because they decide what is sustainable and what is not.
    Nice to see they are worried about water supplies. I would have thought the record snowfalls, that the warmists said were a weather feature of the past, would assist glaciers.
    It is noted that they have returned to the glacier scares that have been proven false in the past. Yet they admit that their knowledge is limited, which is as close as you can find to a warmist acknowledging he is guessing.
    They make the usual claim that CO2 is responsible but this time include other carbon derivatives plus ozone. In other words , they acknowledge that carbo dioxide taxes and Emissions Trading Schemes are a failure. They refuse to acknowledge the Clean Air Acts in place throughout the developed world that have had significant successes over air pollution and acid rains.
    In fact, carefully read, this is an admission that this whole scare is false,that this is coming straight out of the alarmist text book. However if the point is that we should be storing more water for irrigation and health and wellbeing of people then this will be a good document. The productivity Commission in Australia found that not storing water and thereby forcing rationing of water had a very bad effect on productivity. Not only from a maintenance of buildings and machinery but also from the high stress a lack of water causes.
    They have no proof other than computer models that are no more than tarot by 1 and 0.

  5. Glaciers are useless. What’s wrong with rivers and lakes? Stupid Pontiffs and CAGWists!

  6. As global warming is a competing religion to Christianity, with its own (global warming) hell, its own high priests, even its own indulgences, one has to ask why the Catholic church is getting in bed with the devil?

    … or perhaps it can be explained by the way the Catholic church has always converted pagans … by taken over their main icons as its own!

  7. Soot, maybe.
    CO2 – never in a million years.

    But, hey, the new religion needs Pontifical Benediction. Yay! And we all go to heaven. And the Vatican gets a royalty.

  8. The disintegration of many small glaciers in the Himalayas is most disturbing to me since this region serves as the water tower of Asia

    The melting of the glaciers will not reduce the amount of water flowing down the mountains. It will still snow in winter and melt in summer. No more can flow down the rivers than falls as precipitation in the first place.

    The only way that water flow will be reduced is if 1) precipitation declines, which is not shown, or 2) the glaciers start to grow, as that means precipitation will be trapped.

    Of all the alarmist non-issues, the idea that melting glaciers will reduce the water that flows into rivers is quite possibly the worst. If anything it is the reverse that is true.

  9. Cardinal Pell did not sign off on it from the new Aussie office in the Holy See

  10. Awesome, Catholicism and paganism rolled into one religion. For a limited time only, worship Jesus and the climate to double your chances of getting into heaven.

  11. Surely nothing more than a mish-mash of unsubstantiated assertions concerning unremarkable natural climatic variation that is in no way unprecedented. Perhaps a less charitable view – the hierarchy of one religion trying to win over the believers of another?
    But in fairness I must commend as a notable exception Australia’s own Archbishop George Pell, leader of the Catholic Church in this country. Pell maintains his sceptical viewpoint despite the apparent acquiescence of his theological brethren to “the consensus”.

  12. To ‘address climate change’ presupposes that it is caused by human activity, and it is reasonable to postulate that the more humans there are, the greater the human activity.

    So one way to reduce the human effect on climate would be to restrict the number of humans and a key step in that would be artificial contraception for those who want it.

    Over to you, hypocrites of the Vatican.

  13. I must say that I am a bit disappointed with this post.
    The lead title – “The Vatican gets involved in climate change,” suggested one thing.
    The subtitle – “Vatican Science Panel Calls Attention to the Threat of Glacial Melt,” tells the story.
    Neither Vatican nor the Church have made any pronouncements on these issues. The Pope is entitled to be advised. Agree or disagree with this particular advice doesn’t mean he won’t receive other advice.

  14. Now we have Papal Proof that CO2 causes warming. So who is doing the cooling?

  15. No more burning of incense/candles would reduce airborne particles, and allowing use of condoms to reduce unplanned demand would set examples to start with. High places like the Vatican would be ideal for siting a wind turbine, in fact the roofs of all catholic cathedrals could help contribute to clean energy.

  16. The Catholic Church… Forever stuck on the side of anti-science.

    It seems almost quant how they would jump on the bandwagon just at the time the wheels are coming off and newer science is showing the many deficits of the CO2 centric model. Right after Charles Manson and OBL. Hmm.

    They seem to have quite a bit backwards in the article. The “peace and justice” (I assume they mean the new code word for socialism, which is ‘social justice’) that they talk about is not related to water supplies. Its a result of stable government and a healthy economy, in part, but mostly it comes from annual rainfall and not glaciers.

    I just love how these people deliver ‘complete’ solutions to complex problems – signed sealed delivered and ready for governments around the world to approve. Or force on their citizens as the case may be. Ignoring that even if it were true, China would quickly fill any drop in CO2 in short order.

  17. We know that glaciers have been in retreat since the end of the Little Ice Age. What is the difference today? Is soot a more dominant factor that co2? Something else?

    “But we can say, in general, that the dominating tendency of glaciers at the present time is to retreat.”
    International Committee on Glaciers – 1904

    http://www.jstor.org/pss/30056705

    “The great number of glaciers of which we have any information are retreating; the glaciers of the Scandinavian Alps alone are entering a period of advance;….”
    International Committee on Glaciers – 1907

    http://www.jstor.org/pss/30058579

    “A general retreat is dominant in the Swiss Alps”.
    “Italian Alps.-The retreat, which has been general for some years, seems to be continuing without change”.
    International Committee on Glaciers – 1909

    http://www.jstor.org/pss/30067996

    “Most of the earth’s glaciers have been shrinking in recent decades,…..”
    American Geographical Society – 1947

    http://www.jstor.org/pss/211127

  18. Scottish Sceptic says:
    May 9, 2011 at 12:43 am As global warming is a competing religion to Christianity, with its own (global warming) hell, its own high priests, even its own indulgences, one has to ask why the Catholic church is getting in bed with the devil?
    —————————————————————————–
    Well Scottish Sceptic, they are both desperate and desperados often seek each other out for mutual support. Pathetic isn’t it!

    Douglas

  19. Why don’t we try and do something that can make a difference instead of trying to shave a trace amount from the trace gas co2?

    “Plausible estimates for the effect of soot on snow and ice albedos (1.5% in the Arctic and 3% in Northern Hemisphere land areas) yield a climate forcing of +0.3 W/m2 in the Northern Hemisphere. The “efficacy” of this forcing is ~2, i.e., for a given forcing it is twice as effective as CO2 in altering global surface air temperature.”
    Soot climate forcing via snow and ice albedos
    Hansen et al. 2003

    NASA on the Himalayas also points to soot.

    http://www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/himalayan-soot.html

    http://www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/himalayan-warming.html

  20. An omniscient God, did not see CAGW coming and make allowances for it in the orginal design and feedback mechanisms?
    An omnipotent God can’t fix CAGW?

    Time the Vatican revised their theology.

  21. By the time this is disseminated throughout the worldwide “flock”, it’ll be all over for scepticism. It’s just a pity that it won’t be accompanied by the message that people will assist in this by not chopping down and burning forests for profit and food, nor the obvious one mentioned by Rick Bradford above, definitely not by a Catholic messenger.

    You never know, though. If their recent track record on contraception against AIDS in Africa is anything to go by, they may eventually see the light on other issues.

  22. The last time the Vatican got involved with “science” they put Galileo under house arrest for opposing the earth centric universe. It took the Vatican nearly a half a millennium to admit they were wrong.

  23. Of course. The Anthropocene. Maybe the “Technozoic” Era is at hand. But wait! This is the ultimate culmination of the Inquisition. If you can’t win by cheating, lie. If lying dosn’t cut it, resort to glurge. When we are all sick of fuzzy bunnies and cute pandas, and children killing their immoral classmates, try a ziploc bag full of good old old-time religion. Fire and Brimstone. And some Prayer. That’ll do it. The dog and pony show is reaching the end of its useful life.

  24. Of course wind turbines on the roofs of the Vatican and catholic cathedrals could be tastefully designed to look like rotating crosses, so blending the traditions of the catholic church into the modern context of eco-religion and standing out as new age beacons leading us to the promised land and our salvation.

  25. Catholicism is the great Gobal Religion…it has become so by always modifying its approach in every region to tap in on indigenous or pre-existing belief systems. So Catholicism in S.America is different to that practised in Africa or Ireland.
    It doesn’t surprise me that they’ve latched onto the AGW bandwagon, they’re hoping to gain the edge in the battle for our souls.
    But ‘Never Never Never’ forget, (apologies to Ian Paisley) that it was the Vatican Scientists who toed the official line (even though they had the finest telescopes available at the time) and made Galileo recant.
    Global Warming IS already a religion, this Catholic gloss on it is just shabby PR.
    By the way I am an athiest, not a member of some other Christian sect getting a dig in at the Papists!

  26. Climate change issue offers no threat to Catholic doctrine. The priestly class is happy to sail with the wind on this, calculating lot that they are.

    Who knows, James Hansen’s mission from goddess Venus may well end up in a papal encyclical if the church concludes the size of the movement warrants it. CAGW is already an article of faith -a ‘scientific’ article of faith, that is- for many people, including pagans and atheists. The Catholic Church won’t let a herd go unshepherded.

  27. “Lawrie Ayres says:
    May 9, 2011 at 1:22 am

    Now we have Papal Proof that CO2 causes warming. So who is doing the cooling?”

    The Almighty’s clearly intervening to protect us from our sins. Praise the Gore!

  28. This is one of the weirder “we’re all gonna die” themes that are routinely trotted out by otherwise intelligent individuals. Generally what is crucial to those who get their water from high mountains is not snowpack or glacier size. It is total precipitation. Moreover, there is this truly marvelous invention called a “dam” that, like snowpack, holds back water for later release and, unlike snowpack, generates hydro-electric power in the process. And dams — unless mismanaged or overwhelmed by unusually large amounts of precipitation — offer far better control of water release thereby controlling flooding and providing more water for agriculture. There are negative aspects to dams like their affect on some commercial fisheries (e.g. Salmon). But overall, they have proved to be a good thing.

    It all sort of makes one wonder if there is such a thing as a stupid pill and why people take them.

  29. As a Catholic, I am saddened to see this.
    I see no conflict between religion and science and neither does the Church except for situations where scientists use their science for purposes which the Church believes to be morally wrong. (You can agree or not with the Church’s definition of what is morally wrong). There are scientists and others within the Church who are convinced by the warmist argument and those like me who are sceptical.
    This is no place for a theology lecture, even were I qualified to give one(!), but if there is anything that is irrelevant to the Almighty’s great scheme for mankind it is an alleged couple of degrees fluctuation in temperature which has occurred within the lifespan of two generations.
    If we are going to start introducing religion into the debate (please, no!) then the 90th psalm would be good starting point:
    “For a thousand years in thy sight are but as yesterday when it is past, and as a watch in the night”.
    To assume that mankind has the ability to upset the planet to the extent that warmists propose is arrogance indeed and I trust the Vatican — should it choose to pronounce on the subject, which I hope it won’t — will say so.

  30. I also think this shows how desperate these people are becoming.

    These socialist always run around looking for any authority that will take up their cause.

    It’s important to note that most institutions from governments, and even the recent posts here about how corrupt and rotten organizations like General Electric has become really brings home this point.

    GE is one of the largest lobbyist in Washington for anything green, and they stand to make billions in all kinds of new carbon capture equipment that can only be justified by some nasty carbon tax or regulations to raise the cost to justify buying huge amounts of expensive GE equipment for ridiculous things like carbon capture.

    The United Nations, the IPCC, so many governments etc are essentially selling out the public in the name of their socialist causes. They LOOK FOR supposed authority to sell their agenda.

    The socialist and communist revolutions of the world have always attempted to use some authority to push forward their agendas. If you look at the land reform in South Africa and especially in places like South America the socialist lefts have a tradition of attempting to use church authority to push forward their socialist agenda.

    While the church has a long tradition of teaching against socialism, in fact much of the clergy and religious institutions in South America were actually being used to push forward a political agenda of land redistribution and socialism. They even had fancy sounding names such as DEVELOPMENT AND PEACE. Fact is this type of authority has a tremendous effect on weak minded individuals that thus accept this church authority.

    Despite the church having had a long tradition and long teachings against the evils of socialism, these people were in fact pushing an agenda of redistributing land. Redistribution of land is not an act of charity, but forced theft by the state. Forced redistribution of people’s land and hard earned resources of their own labor goes against all traditions and teachings of the church.

    The idea that the church and religious institutions which are being rocked by so many scandals today are to be somehow magically immune from this socialist movement when governments and existing institutions around the world are selling out people would thus become a laughable and preposterous position for anyone of reasoned mind to take.

    In other words that Church institution is not immune to being hijacked and used to push the socialist agenda no more than those universities and governments and even corporations around the world are also doing.

    In a fact just like Arnold Schwarzenegger sticking out his neck up to support the global warming movement really hurt him as having any chance as being respected by conservatives. The same will occur to these church leaders and the result will simply be a loss of HUGE amounts of credibility being destroyed in this process.

    It would’ve been near impossible for me to tell everyone here a few years ago how that I thought Arnold Schwarzenegger was selling us out (he was popular and supposedly a republican). Now’s rather easy to tell everyone about how rotten Arnold Schwarzenegger is!

    This Vatican announcement NOW allows me to now make the same case that this institution’s authority is being hijacked and abused in the same way. In other words the current hierarchy and church leaders have ceased to be something that fights against socialism and communism around the world, but is now in fact promoting it. They are in effect have become anti-Christian.

    Super Turtle

  31. Olaf Koenders, Wizard of Oz? 12:35 am thanks, I like that sort of talk.

  32. Perhaps this is a timely reminder of the actual meaning of the word ‘pontificate’ which climate alarmists do at the drop of a hat. Kinda ironic that the religion that once burnt heretics at the stake now wants a stake in modern heresies!

  33. If Moses could hold back the Red Sea, I am sure that the Pontiff could hold back the snow & ice in all those Himalian Glaciers. Perhaps they have Moses’ staff tucked away somewhere in the vaults of the Vatican with which the Pope could perform this miracle.

  34. Interesting choice – stewardship. It was introduced into mainstream politics by the church during the feudal system to tell the serfs (slaves) to take care of their lord’s (masters) property in order to maximize it’s production using some parables in the Gospels. It’s use today has morphed from “sustained use for the owner” to “don’t drill anywhere, any time, any way, no way even if you starve the world”.

    Mostly, the folks that authored the paper have skewered the Vatican by reversing it’s theology to make their paganism part of the Church. The Church sometimes makes astounding statements with great insight. For example, their pre-DNA analysis of conception as the beginning of a unique human life. This, however, will be added to their other list of profound scientific mistakes.

    It’s very clear that humans contribute some tiny fraction to climate mostly at the micro climate. Taking action to mitigate climate effects is, in fact, important. Growing tomatoes, for example, on Everest, should be everyone’s objective. However, burning food, starving people and spreading famine, insuring the third world has no electricity for clean water, etc., etc., is evil almost beyond redemption. A truly Biblical holocaust begat by the Greenies upon mankind.

  35. I have a pdf of this paper, and Professor Zichichi is the man who, a few years ago talked some sense into the Pontifical Academy of Sciences:

    CLIMATE CHANGE AND DEVELOPMENT
    INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE
    Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace
    The Vatican, 26-27 April 2007
    METEOROLOGY AND CLIMATE:
    PROBLEMS AND EXPECTATIONS
    Antonino Zichichi
    World Federation of Scientists, Beijing, Geneva, Moscow, New York

    Not a true believer! Zichichi has called global warming models “incoherent and invalid” (Wikipedia) I hope he hasn’t completely retired, but he is in his 80′s.

    ———-

    Once upon a time, the Christian Church took over from the pagans throughout Europe. It is perhaps an indication of the pathetic state the church is in, that it rolls over and capitulates.

    [Reply] Zichichi was the president of the WFS at the time. TB-mod

  36. Reminds me of some old jokes:
    “How low can they go? Dachshunds!”
    “Lawdy, Miss Scarlett, I’se don’t know nothin’ ’bout birthin’ babies!”
    “Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition!”

  37. Someone please explain this to me:

    Planet warms. Glaciers melting… gives melt water … irrigation, drinking water etc. Good, no? Glacier melts all away… rain still falls… water still flows … irrigation, drinking water etc.

    But: planet gets colder: glacier doesn’t melt… rain or snow falling on glacier freezes and no water flows… no irrigation, no drinking water. IOW, what the heck is the point these people are trying to make? What am I missing here?

  38. Glaciers and trees prove there was a Medieval Warm Period followed by the Little Ice Age, (and evidence of an even earlier Roman Warm Period)

    from WUWT August 31, 2009

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/08/31/new-ice-core-project-in-greenland-looks-at-eemian-period/#more-10405

    crosspatch (16:44:34) :

    I began reading a paper today:

    Tree-ring crossdates for a First Millennium AD advance of Tebenkof
    David J. Barclaya, Gregory C. Wilesb and Parker E. Calkinc

    The crux of it is that while the Tebenkof glacier (Alaska) has been receding since about 1900, it has been exposing trees (discovered in 1935) from a forest the glacier had advanced through. There were apparently two major periods of advance. The oldest of the trees discovered had started their growth in the AD 220s. They all ended their growth in the 710’s and 720’s. The ice apparently didn’t remain long at the terminal location of this advance as there is no moraine established there. Trees were recolonizing the area by the AD 950s.

    A more extensive advance occurred in two phases during the LIA. The first phase advanced through forest sometime between the 1280’s and 1320’s. The more recent second phase pushed through forest in the 1640’s and 1650’s. It apparently maintained this maximum extent for about 200 years before starting its retreat. There is an absolute boundary whereby the maximum extent could not have reached as there is an 800yo tree living just beyond the terminal moraine of the second LIA advance.

    The ice then began a retreat receding some 250-350m by 1910, 300m more by 1935, 500m more by 1964, and a total of 1.6km from its LIA maximum in 1984.

    The point being that as the glacier has receded since 1900 it has exposed trees that prove the area had been forested in the past. The area being exposed now has been exposed in the not-so-distant past. Also, this first millennium advance was not limited to Northern North America. The timing also coincides with glacial advances (also dated with growth ring correlation) in the European Alps.

    What we are experiencing is not “human induced warming”, it is “recovery from the Little Ice Age” that is happening at the same time as human population expansion.

  39. The Catholic church would do well to stay out of science and instead concentrate on cleaning up the hords of freaks, perverts and pedofiles that permeate the church to its upmost levels. Perhaps that is where they could call for real social justice along with a few more alter boys. sarc off

  40. “Glacier retreat in the hot 2003 summer exposed remains from several distinct periods: from ~ 2800-2500 BC; from 2000-1750 BC; ~150 BC-250 AD; and the MWP up to the 14th/15th Century.”

    Steve McIntyre – Archaeological Finds in Retreating Swiss Glacier

    Or was that a different kind of warmth back then…
    Anyone for vineyards?

  41. Oh god no. Adding validity to the AGW religion. A return to the 17th century !

  42. @Allan M:
    “Once upon a time, the Christian Church took over from the pagans throughout Europe. It is perhaps an indication of the pathetic state the church is in, that it rolls over and capitulates.”

    The church ‘took over’ from paganism because the secular power (Emperor Constantine and successors) needed it to validate and support its shift into universal totalitarianism and made Christianity compulsory. Echoes, echoes….

  43. Richard deSousa says: (May 9, 2011 at 1:57 am)
    “The last time the Vatican got involved with “science” they put Galileo under house arrest for opposing the earth centric universe. It took the Vatican nearly a half a millennium to admit they were wrong.”

    They also burned Giordano Bruno (a distant relative of mine) at the stake for the same reason. On the other hand, the Pope does have a nice hat.

  44. A little premature and in the wrong direction in my humble opinion, but it does once again set the church on record as being pro-people if the Pope signs off on it, and he probably will. (Hot or cold, suffering is suffering, politics is politics, and helping people costs money.) Churches deal with people. People suffer during climate change of any sort. Popes worry about human welfare and suffering. Odds are that something will happen someday and, right now, there’s apparently still more money in AGW than not. After all, just look at all the “concerned Noble Prize Winners” who think the Sky is Falling. From here it looks opportunistic and transparent, a little like The Salvation Army ringing bells after Turkey Day. Oh well, people are only human. Right?

  45. This is an inevitable conflation of two Christian doctrines (I speak as a practising Christian). The first, with which I have no problem, is being a good steward of the resources of this planet which God has entrusted to us. So, being responsible users of energy, food and so on and ensuring that there is enough for all is laudable and something I strive to do.

    The second, with which I do take issue, is the tendency of Christians to assume personal responsibility for anything that has gone wrong or has been presumed to have gone wrong. It’s the modern equivalent of self-flagellation, whipping oneself as a means of atoning for unspecified sins, one of the Catholic church’s less praiseworthy practices, along with the Inquisition and selling indulgences. In a perverse way, many Christians feel better when they can feel guilty about something, so unquestioningly assuming personal responsiblity for “AGW/climate change/disruption” enables them to feel extra virtuous as they adopt the hair shirt of “green living”, contrasting themselves with those “sinners” who don’t. There is also a nasty tendency among some Christians who are politically on the left and therefore susceptible to “green” politics to assume that Christians with right wing views are somehow not “proper” Christians and thus those who express contrary views may be shouted down.

    The answer to soot pollution, which seems to be the major culprit for local climate change, is not to take us back to medieval standards of living but to bring the Third World up to ours, enabling them to have ample supplies of cheap, non-polluting power and get rid of their reliance on open fires and obsolete coal power stations.

  46. And this from a relegion that had its stamp, savagely & brutally, upon who was (is?) to believe what, where, & when? I know, lets try & find an old crone or even young beauty (when I’ve finished gazing at her to determine if she is wearing low-carbon underwear…………………….bliss!) who we don’t like, accuse her of being a witch, we can then tie her to a ducking stool, dunk her a few times, & if she drowns, she is innocent, but if she just plain refuses to die she is clearly guilty, we’ll tie her to a stake & burn her alive, yey! Simples, that’s real science for you! sarc off.

  47. I (protestant, Australia) thank Cardinal Pell (Catholic, Australia) for questioning such views. And how it upsets the Greens – ‘Pell is not a scientist’ – neither are the likes of our pro-CAGW fanatics Peter Garrett (rock musician), Penny Wong (lawyer) or Tim Flannery (paleontologist). The media of course give them a dream run, with rare exceptions like Andrew Bolt (agnostic, Herald Sun Melbourne).

    The two shots of Everest are interesting but were they taken at the same season? Does anybody know? From reading climbing books I recall that Everest’s snow cover increases markedly when the monsoon arrives. Anyway the difference may be due to the end of the LIA.

  48. Ah yes. The P.O.P.E commission. Pass Out People’s Earnings. For centuries, the Vatican has been at the forefront of sharing the wealth equally among all people, and would then be able to send one tithe from the original combined amount to the Vatican City. What would be the downside to that? Seems like a win/win situation. Everybody get the same little bit, and the Vatican City can spruce up. For sure they need to replace their guard uniform. There hasn’t been enough gold in the pot to update their outfit since the middle ages.

  49. ENCYCLICAL LETTER
    CARITAS IN VERITATE
    OF THE SUPREME PONTIFF
    BENEDICT XVI
    TO THE BISHOPS
    PRIESTS AND DEACONS
    MEN AND WOMEN RELIGIOUS
    THE LAY FAITHFUL
    AND ALL PEOPLE OF GOOD WILL
    ON INTEGRAL HUMAN DEVELOPMENT
    IN CHARITY AND TRUTH

    (29 June 2009)
    Excerpts:

    ‘The search for love and truth is purified and liberated by Jesus Christ from the impoverishment that our humanity brings to it, and he reveals to us in all its fullness the initiative of love and the plan for true life that God has prepared for us. In Christ, charity in truth becomes the Face of his Person, a vocation for us to love our brothers and sisters in the truth of his plan. Indeed, he himself is the Truth.

    4. ….Truth, by enabling men and women to let go of their subjective opinions and impressions, allows them to move beyond cultural and historical limitations and to come together in the assessment of the value and substance of things.

    5. …..This doctrine is a service to charity, but its locus is truth. Truth preserves and expresses charity’s power to liberate in the ever-changing events of history.

    9. The Church does not have technical solutions to offer[10] and does not claim “to interfere in any way in the politics of States.”[11] She does, however, have a mission of truth to accomplish, in every time and circumstance, for a society that is attuned to man, to his dignity, to his vocation. Without truth, it is easy to fall into an empiricist and sceptical view of life, incapable of rising to the level of praxis because of a lack of interest in grasping the values — sometimes even the meanings — with which to judge and direct it. ‘

    source: http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/benedict_xvi/encyclicals/documents/hf_ben-xvi_enc_20090629_caritas-in-veritate_en.html

  50. As a result of so very many child abuse scandals, the Roman Catholic Church is losing its members rapidly. In a desperate attempt for a comeback, they are now trying this. A wrong move at the wrong time, since Global Warming is losing its believers rapidly too, now the Earth is heading towards a new Maunder Minimum. As Professor Easterbrook has said: The cooling has already commenced. In just a few years this message will become so clear that the Church, already losing its members because of the child abuse scandals, will also lose its members because of the AGW scandal that they are now – foolishly – making a part of their own religion.

  51. Just business. Pope admit AGW and no more accusations about pedophiles in catholic church in MSM. This is the game. Just it.

  52. The Vatican prb’ly had alot to do with pontificating the “causes” & resulting sufferings from the Little Ice Age — human sin.

    Some things never change.

  53. ” citing the moral imperative before society to properly address climate change. ”

    I just don’t think Jesus would have considered it a ‘moral imperative’ to hold a gun to someone’s head to force them to emit less CO2.

  54. I see a real similarity between California’s Austrian Gov Arnold Schwarzenegger and his Germanic cousin, Pope Benedict. Their minds are so hopelessly clouded by the Green religion that they cannot think clearly. There appears to be a cultural bias at work.

  55. Umm! Some of these comments disparage without crediting a legitimate point. It is entirely reasonable to be concerned about the earth’s climate and what we might be doing to it. Just because it is the Catholic church offering an opinion does not make the comment any less the relevant. That said however leaves us with a problem, for the proclaimers rarely offer realistic solutions. In fact they never offer any answers.

    It is abundantly clear that electricity is fundamental to modern life with all that it can offer. Those of us in the developed nations who have benefited know this all too well. So the question really is. How can we get it without causing other issues that may compromise the world in which we all live? I do not feel we can just go on burning fossil fuels willy nilly without recognising that it may have unknown and unpleasant long term consequences. OK, the concern is unproven. Indeed it maybe entirely groundless! But there are unknowns here that cannot be entirely rubbished.

    Those interested in practical solutions already realise the answer is not ugly inefficient windmills or any of the other so called renewable sources apart from hydro. None of these can provide a consistently stable supply at an affordable price, something the world needs, not just Europeans or Americans.

    As it stands today there are few routes to this nirvana apart from those involving the nuclear process. Unfortunately this brings us face to face with wilful scientific ignorance and the scaremongering tactics of those who have reached positions of political and media influence. While the future of this may lie with fusion, progress has been slow, apart that is from the extracting of huge sums to equip and pay those involved in the international effort. Perhaps it is time to divert a little of this money to investigate the polywell reactor and any other fusion reactor that might show promise. If that decision means putting someone’s nose out of joint, well that’s too bad, but there is more at stake here than exaggerated human sensibilities. Integral to this redirected effort must be something that offers the promise of a much shorter return, perhaps via the creation of an international programme under the IAEA to see what the Liquid Fluoride Thorium Reactor (LFTR) has to offer the world.

    Naturally this means the political classes will have to show some leadership and backbone. Given Mr Obama’s recent discovery that he has one, perhaps he will also admit that bankrupting American industry by making electricity prohibitively expensive is nonsensical. A strategic rethink of this economic naivety might lead him to conclude that America ought to take the lead in this effort towards exploring and developing a practical LFTR, one that will offer immense hope to an energy starved world.

  56. Then: Indulgences, to buy absolution for your sins.
    Now: Carbon Credits, to buy absolutions for your sins.

    And guess which institution gets on the bandwagon now…
    Old habits never die.

  57. Hmmm…well, why not? I know when accurate, cutting edge science is mentioned the first thing I think of is the Catholic church. Galileo must be spinning in his grave fast enough that if you could hook him to a generator you could power Rome.

  58. Do you think this is what Boy George meant with the song “Church of the Poisoned Mind”?

  59. It is no surprise really. It isn’t the first time the Vatican pushed religious doctrine and the current AGW movement certainly qualifies as that.

  60. ‘Glacial melt is rapid’ they state. No it isn’t unless your time scale is hundreds of years. glaciers retreat due to failing precipitation and melting normally is the result of geothermal heat not a warming atmosphere. Precipitation failure can be the result of several factors not just climate change.

    Many alarmists have spent holidays in mountainous areas with the majestic U shaped valleys which were caused by glaciers and are now visible because the glaciers have retreated. Glaciers come and go in the natural cycles so live with it.

  61. Bob in Castlemaine @ May 9, 2011 at 1:13 says:

    “Australia’s own Archbishop George Pell, leader of the Catholic Church in this country. Pell maintains his sceptical viewpoint.”

    With that news, and the subsequent hysterical response from a gaggle of rusted on alarmists, I came close to converting to the Faith! No chance now after reading the Vatican’s baloney.

  62. son of mulder,

    Beat me to it.

    Only problem is that most windmills have 3 blades, and the new windmills need 4 blades. So when they’re not operating (which is most of the time), they have to be positioned to double as a cross. We could refer to it as the Double Cross of the Faithful. And if any of the Catholic and Gaian faithful get confused when the “cross” is spinning and what it means to them, the Vatican can issue an ecumenical encyclical series entitled “Inquisitional Minds Want to Know” to clear everything up.

    Actually, putting windmills on cathedrals would have a secondary benefit for the green faithful. Windmills are considered by many of the faithful to be the wave of the future. So when the wind doesn’t blow, and the cathedral’s lights/heat/A/C go out, the only heat and light in the cathedrals will be from votive candles that the faithful light as partial penance for their sins and as prayers for the future. The irony of that moment will be that the faithful will be simultaneously suffering penance and seeing their future by hovering around those tiny votive candles for light and warmth.

  63. I just finished redirecting my wife’s monthly Catholic Church contribution to the Anthony Watts – surfacestations.org fund.

  64. Actually loss of glaciers will reduce stream flow eventually. What is missed is that growth of glacier would reduce it right now. annual stream flow is going to be greatest if the glaciers are retreating.

    I haven’t seen anything to suggest the Church has had much to say on this at all, other than we should take care of our environment. Isn’t this just an opinion piece from some people that some clergy asked for an opinion? If you don’t like this opinion politely tell the vatican why. Some mighty smart men there but not many scientists these days.

    The entire Galileo event is very interesting. For example, Galileo insisted comets were a weather phenomena and was insulting and abusive for years to the astronomer priest who demonstrated otherwise. Then “surprise” the same insulted priest refused to testify on his behalf.

    This wrangel took place over a quarter of a century duting the counter reformation when the Church could not afford to be seen as liberal. A fascinating story, James Burke did a nice job though incomplete in the old video series “The Day the Universe Changed” Science Revises the Heavens.

  65. Wouldn’t it be more intellectually honest to compare e.g. 1970-now, than 1922-now for glacial ice loss.

    According to every climate model, all of the warming prior to 1970 was natural, and Ramanathan certainly knows this.

    It is completely intellectually bankrupt to make comparisons like these, since he is making an attribution to anthropogenic forcing that is not supported by the science.

  66. I wonder how many of the Warmists take the Catholic’s official position on Abortion to heart.

  67. Hands up, I am totally agnostic but I am reminded of a Jethro Tull song, a line of which went something like…

    “I don’t believe you, you’ve got the whole dam thing all wrong”

  68. In the UK the study of glaciers was dropped from GCSE Geography in favour of studying the slums of Rio. I never thought it would arise in RE.

  69. “Though scientists usually refrain from proposing action, Ramanathan said the circumstances warranted advancing suggestions from the working group. The authors recommend pursuit of three measures: immediate reduction of worldwide carbon dioxide emissions, reduction of concentrations of warming air pollutants such as soot, ozone, methane and hydroflurocarbons by up to 50 percent, and preparation to adapt to climate changes that society will not be able to mitigate.”

    How strange. My Irony Detector did not sense a WHIFF of anything but a serious statement there. Most of us Skeptiks don’t worry so much about the science (at least those of us who aren’t climate scientists). We could live with strangers having a theorem we don’t agree with. That happens all day, every day. Our problem for the most part are the drastic and intrusive solutions that are proposed and preached ad nauseum by scientists, those who claim to be scientists, politicians and charlatans trying to empower or enrich themselves by appealing to scientists…hoo boy.

    It is just a shame that the Curia has fallen for this. You’d think with their unparalleled access to documents from the Roman era to the present that they would notice the differences between the warm Roman period, the cold dark ages, Medieval warmth, the LIA, and the present. It has to be right there in their library. They probably have farming records for various monasteries like Monte Cassino going back to the beginning.

    I hope Father doesn’t latch on to this for his next few sermons! I’d rather hear about sin and redemption and the afterlife.

  70. My first thought was when your priest takes your confession of having a larger than average carbon footprint will be the equivalent of your plumber giving you stock market advice at market tops.

  71. “Jerry from Boston said:

    So when the wind doesn’t blow, and the cathedral’s lights/heat/A/C go out, the only heat and light in the cathedrals will be from votive candles that the faithful light as partial penance for their sins and as prayers for the future.”

    No, they will sing the hymn ‘Breath on me breath of God’, the sails will turn and the votive candles will be extinguished.

  72. Too bad indulgences were so egregious that they spawned the Protestant revolution.

    Otherwise we could have combined all the “Get Out of Guilt” (GOG) mechanisms into a single global GOG Mercantile Exchange (GME).

  73. “Vatican Science Panel Calls Attention to the Threat of Glacial Melt
    Pontifical Academy of Sciences working group of leading scientists to present report to Pope Benedict XVI

    Scripps Institution of Oceanography / University of California, San Diego
    A panel of some of the world’s leading climate and glacier scientists co-chaired by a Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UC San Diego researcher issued a report today commissioned by the Vatican’s Pontifical Academy of Sciences citing the moral imperative before society to properly address climate change.”

    When I read this carefully it gives me hope because it’s not what it seems.

    This is a “report” by a group “commissioned by” the Pontifical Academy of Sciences working group of leading scientists to present report to Pope Benedict XVI.

    Hopefully the Pope will also receive the other side of the story when he carefully evaluates whether or not his input is helpful, or necessary.

    In other words, “The Church” has not yet spoken on this matter, let alone given it’s endorsement to the CAGW belief.

    There is at least one recent (1968) precedent of a Pope ignoring a “Science Panel’s” advice.

  74. Well… At least the AGW science has moved into the correct forum… RELIGION.

    Where the heck is Martin Luther, when we need him??? GK

  75. Jimbo says: May 9, 2011 at 1:48 am- “Why don’t we try and do something that can make a difference instead of trying to shave a trace amount from the trace gas co2? “Plausible estimates for the effect of soot on snow and ice albedos (1.5% in the Arctic and 3% in Northern Hemisphere land areas) yield a climate forcing of +0.3 W/m2 in the Northern Hemisphere. The “efficacy” of this forcing is ~2, i.e., for a given forcing it is twice as effective as CO2 in altering global surface air temperature.”
    Soot climate forcing via snow and ice albedos
    Hansen et al. 2003
    NASA on the Himalayas also points to soot.

    http://www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/himalayan-soot.html

    http://www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/himalayan-warming.html

    Yes, it does seem like it’s past time for the application of the 80/20 rule to the perceived problems of climate change.- I concur with your comment on lets “do something that can make a difference”. I take it the new vehicle emission testing for diesel vehicles in CA is an attempt to address soot.

    At some point in time the way we have been allocating resources- primarily towards reducing the CO2 load- will need to be evaluated in terms of the effectiveness. Do we need to spend 50% of our limited resources on adaption , or should it be a greater percentage. As Jack noted- at 12:29 am
    “However if the point is that we should be storing more water for irrigation and health and wellbeing of people then this will be a good document.” – a focus on adaption is needed.

  76. The comments here provide ample facts for the older post here: http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/04/23/upcoming-anonymous-poll-on-anonymity/

    Why do some people comment anonymously? Because they (justly) fear critique based on who they are or their affiliation. Just about NO post here comments on the merits or lack thereof in the original posts content. Instead the comments are merely a weak tirade of church bashing because of WHERE the source emanates from.

    And before I’m accused of it, no, I am not a catholic. I just deeply wish people would address the content and not the source. Sad, for a community that likes to tout their high value they supposedly place on debating the science. Please, play the ball, not the person.

  77. Philip Finck says:

    “The Catholic church would do well to stay out of science and instead concentrate on cleaning up the hords of freaks, perverts and pedofiles that permeate the church to its upmost levels.”
    ________
    This is libelous. There is no more pedophilia in the Catholic Church than in any other denomination, and were it not for drama queens seeking attention and money, and crooked lawyers seeking huge settlements, many (not all) of the accusations made against priests would never see the light of day. Protestant denominations, in general, don’t have the buckets of money that make suing them worth the effort. As because trials are public and potentially even more expensive, settling claims, even false ones, has become the Catholic Church’s quickest PR response.

    With regard to the actual subject of the article, who cares what the Church’s has to say on global warming? Do any of its subscribers actually take its press releases seriously?

    When AGW believers resort to argument from authority, as they always do, they prove themselves incapable of logical argument. Citing the alleged authority of the Church, which even many Catholics find dubious, is really scraping the bottom of the barrel.

  78. Patrick Kelly has it right – this is a report of advisors reporting to the Pope, not a pontification. As always, the Pope gets all sorts of recommendations put in front of him, including boulderdash dressed-up as faithful, wise counsel. Such documents merely flush-out the enemy, and provide the Pope with a synopsis of the misguided thinking that screams for an intelligent response. If you’ve ever actually read anything completely which BXVI has written you’d know he’s no slouch, whatever the topic.

    Good education, manners and culture remind us that he’s as entitled to his voice as anyone, but even more so considering he is the leader of one of the Western World’s largest organisations, offering more humanitarian aide worldwide than anyone. Misreporting and bias aside, if and when he eventually speaks, people would do well to listen, because he wouldn’t speak on matters of science nor politics unless he was qualified to speak and unless the mistakes that people are making directly affects the way people live out their lives.

  79. MooLoo and Ron House have made a valid point. Rain runoff is due to yearly precipitation, which doesn’t change on the average, regardless of the existence of glaciers. If glaciers are growing, runoff is less than average yearly rainfall, if glaciers are melting, runoff is more than average yearly rainfall. Relying on glaicer runoff
    is like relying on “fossil water”: It can be temporarily useful, but it can’t be relied on as
    a long term solution.

    http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2010/05/100505-fossil-water-radioactive-science-environment/

    “Brian Handwerk

    for National Geographic News

    Published May 6, 2010

    This story is part of a special series that explores the global water crisis. For more clean water news, photos, and information, visit National Geographic’s Freshwater website.

    In the world’s driest places, “fossil water” is becoming as valuable as fossil fuel, experts say.

    This ancient freshwater was created eons ago and trapped underground in huge reservoirs, or aquifers. And like oil, no one knows how much there is—but experts do know that when it’s gone, it’s gone. (See a map of the world’s freshwater in National Geographic magazine.)”

  80. Not especially new. Rome, along with all the other mainstream religions, switched from Jehovah to Gaia about 10 years ago. I don’t know of any organized Christian group that hasn’t switched. A few non-hierarchical groups haven’t done it explicitly, because they don’t take official positions on any secular matter.

    The Pentecostals who follow Hal Lindsay were pioneers, switching to Gaia even before the communists and “scientists” took up the cause.

    You’d think they would have noticed some of the stuff about the Antichrist in the Bible, but apparently not.

    Of course one of the main characteristics of the predicted Antichrist, if I understand the concept, is that all the mainstream churches will believe it without noticing the problem.

  81. In the struggle between “religion” and “science”, the Galileo parable is usually brought up, I think, inappropriately.

    The original charges against Galileo were not for teaching the Copernican theory, but for not believing in transsubstantiaton.

    A Jesuit Priest, Scheiner, independently discovered suspots around the same time as Galileo. Scheinder thought the spots were clouds above the sun, and the sun itself remained pristine and unblemished, as assumed by Aristotle.

    A second Jesuit Priest, Grassi, discovered that comets orbit the sun.

    Galileo, although very intelligent, was a boor in interpersonal relations. He accused
    Scheiner of being a thief, and accused him of stealing Galileo’s sunspot work.
    Galileo thought comets were atmospheric phenomena, and claimed that Grassi had been drunk, and hallucinated his observations.

    Being only human, Grassi and Scheiner were ticked off at Galileo, and sicked inquisition on him, stating that Galileo’s atomic theory contradicted the Catholic belief in trans-substantiation. The non-belief in trans-substantiation was the original charge against Galileo. The charge against
    the Copernican belief was an afterthough, pursued after the first charge didn’t stick-I believe they were acting much as “birther” act now. They hated Galileo, much as the birthers hate Obama, and are willing to use any accusation, no matter how implausible, to bring him down.

    Galileo didn’t courageously offer himself up as a martyr for science, instead he cravenly buckled under to the inquisition, and publicly recanted his position.

    The whole affair was brought about by Galileo behaving like
    a jackass and getting his comeuppance.

    A more realistic analogy of Galileo with CAGWers is his position on tides. Galileo thought tides were caused by the sloshing bsck and forth of water caused by earth’s rotation,
    just as CAGWers believe climate changes are caused by the amount of CO2 sloshing around in the atmosphere.

    Galileo dismissed Kepler’s belief that tides were caused by the moon, and to a lesser extent by the sun, as the speculations of a superstitious nut, We now know that the
    superstitious nut was correct.

  82. Tallbloke,

    Center of the Cosmos? Listen if, there is a single person out there who can tell me where the center of the Cosmos is in 2011 I’d love to meet them. Our Galaxy, our sun is certainly not the center of the Cosmos, but as a frame of reference, the earth just happens to be the center of the universe, based on the background radiation map and every other observable items in the Cosmos.

    Furthermore, even the Sun is not the center of our Solar system. The center of our solar system is a point about 250,000 miles off the surface of the sun at the solar system’s center of mass.

    I’ll remind you that the heliocentric universe was proposed by Copernicus, a Catholic Cleric. The big bang theory was invented by Georges Henri-LeMaitre, a Roman Catholic priest and physicist in 1929, who was mocked by Fred Hoyle until the background radiation was discovered in 1963.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Georges_Lema%C3%AEtre

    So it turns out the Church in 1632, was right.

    Now as far as global warming goes… I think they are completely wrong.

  83. Off Topic but check out the latest from GOES Project Science. Large Ocean Storm developing. Absolutely gorgeous.

  84. I do a surf forecast for NE Fla. Check it out Da Buh Report.

    http://911surfreport.com/forecast.php

    Anthony thanks for all of your efforts, especially the last several years. Had it not been for your website and contributors, I would not know what I know now. Please, until the last breathe continue to fight the good fight.

  85. I live in an area of mountain glaciers – the Canadian Rockies – and I can say from experienece that the amount of water coming from those glaciers is minor compared to the amount of water flowing down the glacially carved stream beds a few kilometers downslope. As at least one other noted, the majority of water in the glacially originated streams is from snowmelt and rain. A Canadian from Canmore rafted from the glacial headwaters of the Amazon in Peru, and on the way down saw the same thing.

    The eco-green liberals don’t get out of their armchairs enough. Glacial melt hasn’t been a significant portion of river flow for 10,000 years. (Maybe I exaggerage: 8,000 years.)

  86. Forgive me Father for I have sinned. It has been several catastrophes since my last confession.

  87. Since they didn’t state any specific position, I take it that means they’re positionless. In other words, they’re clueless when it comes to climate (except they don’t like it “changing”, which is laughable since that’s the earth’s modus operandi)–they must come up with SOMETHING to appease the masses.

    How sad. Fail again!

  88. Olaf Koenders, Wizard of Oz? says:
    May 9, 2011 at 12:35 am

    Frozen water is a bigger reservoir than rivers and lakes. Snowmelt provides water when it doesn’t rain in places like California. Without it, the rivers would naturally dry up as early as in June instead of August.

    Also, we have a controversy regarding the Sacramento Delta, an estuary. Federal judges have ruled we must decrease the salinity of Delta water to protect endangered species. This ruling is based on bogus science. The fact is, salt water historically intruded from the Pacific Ocean during the dry season well past Sacramento. A United States Geological Survey document shows a map comparing historic salinity to current salinity in the Delta during wet and dry years. Clearly salinity is lower now than it was historically. The reason is we impound water and release it during the dry season. Summertime flows are approximately twice as large today as the natural flow in the dry season. Therefore, we are perturbing the natural system by creating unnaturally lower salinity.

    Why? The problem is we are trying to use an estuary to convey fresh water to farmers and Southern California residents. This delivery system could be improved. It is comparable to air-conditioning your home with the windows open. Native species are already adapted to variable salinity in the Delta. Biodiversity is already sharply reduced due to re-engineering of Delta water-ways that began in the late 1800s.

    The science takes a back seat to politics, and politically allied judges are a big part of the problem. Meanwhile people are made to suffer needlessly.

  89. The authors conclusion is sickening. Totally unscientific appeak to humanity about armageddon. Pathetic.

  90. Well, that cinches it. CAGW is wrong.

    It’s just gonna take them another 350 to 400 years for them to realize it like they did the decision of Pope Urban VIII.

    The Catholic Church is the ultimate in bureaucratic viscosity.

  91. As a certified, life-long Tull-head, my blood quickened to see those lines, Peter H. You are quoting from the song “Wind Up” in the sublime Aqualung album of 1971:

    ….So to my old headmaster…and to anyone who cares:
    Before I’m through I’d like to say my prayers;
    I don’t believe you;
    You had the whole damn thing all wrong!

    No one beats Ian. Pardon me all as I look for my headphones, now.

  92. Looks like The ‘Union of Concerned Hypocrites’.

    If Papa-Ratzi was serious about peace, social justice, and reducing anthropogenic climate change, he would endorse of passive forms of birth control.

    But this agnostic altar boy isn’t gonna hold his breath waiting for that to happen.

  93. Scientific clarity is appropriately applied whenever and wherever scientific ignorance is promulgated.
    ——————————————————————
    A Dozen Global Warming Slogans
    Bob Carter

    http://www.quadrant.org.au/magazine/issue/2011/5/a-dozen-global-warming-slogans/page:printable

    For many years now, our media outlets have been awash with commentary about dangerous human-caused global warming. The coverage tends to move in spasms relating to events such as meetings of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) or, as at present, to government efforts to introduce penal legislation against carbon dioxide emissions in the vain belief that this will “stop global warming”.

  94. Stirling English says:
    May 9, 2011 at 6:47 am
    [comment snipped, thanks for pointing it out. ~dbs, mod.]]

  95. Whoa!!

    The Earth the center of the universe.

    http://curious.astro.cornell.edu/question.php?number=154

    Now there are those equivocators out there that say that the earth is the center of the “observable” universe, and not the actual universe. So OK, if the the actual universe is not observable then explain what brand of science you are using to suggest that the universe is something other than what is observable? Would it be the Vatican Hate variety of science?

    As it happens, the position of the Vatican that the earth is the center of the Cosmos was correct. We know that now. They didn’t know it for sure back then, they just assumed it to be so based on their world view.

    It is wrong to dispel good ideas because they don’t fall into you small tidy box of your own imagination. The reason Anthony Watts is receiving such abundant and positive review, on whole, is because he was willing to speak out against conventional wisdom.

    Accept that often, religious people, come up with some pretty good models of the the physical world. Science is tool by which we measure ideas. Ideas are not necessarily born of science, they come from everywhere.

  96. The world is full of people and organisations both religious and secular wishing to control the minutiae of life of the common man.
    All involve a bogeyman and all involve a hierarchy of drones that extort a percentage of the income of their adherents. The really clever ones extend their extortion to the sceptics by gaining control of legal administration.
    Every society throughout history has suffered in the name of ‘ISMS, and the credulity of the masses will ensure that cunning venality always wins out.

  97. Jesus said to Pontius Pilate, ” I came here to testify to the truth.” Pilate said, “And what is truth?”

    If political correctness can strike oil companies I guess it can stike the Church as well. We all know it has in the past but they were in charge back then and protecting their power and status quo. This is not necessary now.

    A sad day for us Catholics.

  98. Makes one wonder who chose this “committee” of “experts.” Surely they could have found one or two certified climate scientists who think AGW is hogwash. Clearly they did not. Smells like a setup to me. Like all AGW “science,” they started with the conclusions and worked backwards to find the justification.

  99. You can see from the two photos of Everest in 1927 and 2007 that there is less snow on Everest from the summit down. This can’t be due to melting. Everest is getting less precipitation, contributing to smaller glaciers.

    Perhaps this how the next ice age starts – the earth cools as the atmosphere becomes drier. Eventually the glaciers begin to advance, but very slowly due to low precipitation.

  100. I’m not a catholic but please remember that the Church of Rome doesn’t always get its science wrong.

    In 1582 Gregory XIII (on the very basic technology of the day) adopted the Gregorian solar and lunar calendars. The solar calendar (dropping 3 out of every 4 centennial leap years from the Julian calendar) is now adopted almost worldwide for civil purposes and is accurate to 1 day in 3,000 years. While the lunar calendar (adopting the Lillius-Clavius epact tables which were quite extraordinary for their day) is only now used for religious observance (to fix the Pascal Full Moon, Easter Sunday and the moveable feasts) it is similarly accurate – an extraordinary achievement at the time.

    Let’s hope Benedict XVI also gets the science right today.

  101. (i) The Catholic church is growing in developing countries, many in the tropics.
    (ii) The tropics, it is claimed, will be hardest hit by climate change.
    ==> They have a lot to gain from getting on board.
    – Banda

  102. Fred from Canuckistan says:
    May 9, 2011 at 5:56 am
    “It will be really serious when the first AGW Fatwa is issued.”

    Fred! Don’t write things like this. They would never figure it out on their own. A few well-aimed Green Fatwas and every Left female in London will disappear beneath black robes. Well, at least people could finally “see” that something is afoot.

  103. “We are committed to ensuring that all inhabitants of this planet receive their daily bread, fresh air to breathe and clean water to drink as we are aware that, if we want justice and peace, we must protect the habitat that sustains us,”

    So give us your money to do god’s work or you will burn in hell.

    Extortion made legal and they pay no taxes!! On the bright side, maybe if they are busy with climate, choir boys will breathe a sigh of relief.

  104. Billy Liar says:
    May 9, 2011 at 8:43 am

    What is ‘Anthropocene’?
    Is it some kind of high quality coal?

    Exactly, except it has to have formed only in the Holocene.

  105. It was only a matter of time, I suppose, before someone brought up the child abuse meme and Galileo. One track minds always go in circles, I guess.

    This story isn’t even new news, really. The Vatican has held this position for sometime. Must be a slow day. :-)

    REPLY: I look forward then to you sending a letter to Scripps, saying the exact same thing to them for posting it in the news section of their website. Please post a copy here for us to read. – Anthony

  106. Regarding Galileo, he employed Kepler’s work not the work of Copernicus. Using Kepler’s work, he explicated (and thereby invented) scientific method. Galileo’s problem was that he would not shut up. He used Kepler’s work and the newly invented telescope to predict this, that, and the other all of which contradicted the teachings of Aristotle. He predicted the phases of Venus and used to telescope to present Kepler’s system. Aristotle had been embraced fully by the factions within the Inquistion who won the argument over Galileo.

    I am aware that in the last thirty years or so some “philosopher” has published a book arguing that the Inquisition was after Galileo because of the transubstantion issue. No philosopher of science has ever given credence to this view. For those of you not in the know, philosophers of science are not on speaking terms with “philosophers.”

  107. Paul Westhaver (May 9, 2011 at 7:46 am) said, “…as a frame of reference, the earth just happens to be the center of the universe.”

    I agree with you, Paul, in a limited way, namely in that within a theological or spiritual frame of reference, especially in the Jewish and Christian traditions, it is perfectly legitimate and logically consistent to see humankind and our home as being in the centre of the universe.

    However, I’m not sure I understand the distinction between “cosmos” and “universe,” having always thought of them merely as Greek and Latin words for the same concept. I also accept, and I say this as a fairly religious chap, that the observable, physical universe does not and need not dovetail with what we think as our literal and correct understanding of scripture. Methinks that when home turfs are not respected, when theology begins to spill over into science, and vice-versa, we are concocting a stinky and very volatile “chemical” cocktail and trouble is not far behind. So, should your contention that “…the earth just happens to be the center of the universe, based on the background radiation map and every other observable items in the Cosmos,” prove to be empirically either correct or entirely false, I’d argue that it makes no difference, as it does not and should not have any effect on our theological, spiritual and ethical convictions. In this approach, consistency is crucial to the integrity of both the theological and scientific worldviews.

  108. ” The tropics, it is claimed, will be hardest hit by climate change.”

    And yet, the models predict that the greatest warming will occur at the poles. Where it will do the most good by extending the growing season. Oops, better not mention this. Where it will flood the planet when the arctic ice cap melts, as happens every year, with no change in sea level. No problem, most people will never figure that out. Ice floats on top of the ocean, so when it melts the oceans will rise to the level of the top of the ice. Folks will believe that.

    The church is busy in the tropics because that is where it is easiest to grow people to convert to the cause. It is hard to grow people in polar regions, so the investment doesn’t pay off nearly as well.

    If you want clean air and water, don’t go looking for it in the poor nations of the earth. Only the rich industrialized nations can afford such luxuries. The poor nations of the earth you will find garbage lying everywhere. In the rich industrialized nations they pay people to pick it up, or fine them if they don’t. In the poor nations they simply leave it sitting where it is. In the poor nations there is no money to pay someone to pick it up, and you cannot fine someone that cannot pay the fine. It cost money to keep them in jail and if there was money to put them in jail there would be money to pay them to pick up the garbage.

  109. Banda says:

    “The tropics, it is claimed, will be hardest hit by climate change.”

    “…it is claimed…”?? By whom?

    Prof Richard Lindzen states that “there is ample evidence” that the earth’s temperature at the equator has varied by less than 1°C over the past billion years, and that those temperatures have also not changed over the past century.

    Lindzen also says:

    “If one assumes all warming over the past century is due to anthropogenic greenhouse forcing, then the derived sensitivity of the climate to a doubling of CO2 is less than 1°C.” [my bold]

    No credible scientist claims that all warming over the past century is due to CO2, which would imply that there would otherwise be no change in temperature – a situation without precedent. Therefore, sensitivity to CO2 must be substantially below 1°C – and there is no empirical evidence showing that sensitivity to CO2 is not zero. In fact, there is no testable evidence showing that the recent rise in temperature is not simply coincidental with the rise in CO2, or with postal rates. The assumptions made in mainstream climate science would not withstand scrutiny in any of the hard sciences.

    So I would not worry about “climate change” in the tropics, any more than I worry about a rising sea level submerging Tuvalu. There is zero evidence that either is happening. There is only model-based conjecture.

  110. My interpretation of photos such as those, is that they are indicative of the impacts of mega droughts. Mega droughts tend to associate with a cold troposphere. Especially true in the case of tropical glaciers, when you consider how cold conditions in continental interiors will take the wind out of the sails of Monsoonal moisture flows.

  111. What next?: “A coin in the coffer rings a soul from carbon purgatory springs!”
    However-Instead of a Sistine Chapel , Algore gets a new Gulfsream jet..
    Things are getting a bit Galilean around here…

  112. The Catholic relief aid charity Cafod has been up to its neck in political posturing and proselytizing on behalf of the AGW cause for years.

  113. I think those of you assuming that a report made for some clergy, which is all this is, will somehow become Catholic doctrine have a very poor understanding of the church.

    The church is a mighty conservative institution in its own way. It is likely some eco-fanatics within the church are trying to move the church in a more green direction. It is EXTREMELY unlikely they will have any significan success.

    The green movement hates humanity, you are more likely to see Obama as the nominee of the Libertarian party than to see the church join up with Greenpeace.

  114. The canard that glacier melt in the Himalayas influences river level in the region was not only exposed decades ago but is, in its own clear terms, so nonsensical that anyone who would assert it can only be deranged or an idiot. The Ganges River has been sacred to the Vedic Religion for at least 4500 years. It has been constantly monitored by religious bodies from its headwaters all the way to Varanasi. The chief priests live on platforms in the river. If river level had varied with glacier melt and freeze then there exists a detailed record of this. However, there is no need to check the records. One simple physical calculation is enough. Just add up the amount of water that flows from the Himalayan glaciers and compare that volume of water to the volume of water at Varanasi. The water from glaciers is a tiny bit of the volume. This should be obvious to just about everyone. Does anyone really believe that the Mississippi coming out of Minnesota is comparable to the Mississippi at Memphis? All the additional volume comes from watersheds that are located between Mississippi and Memphis. Same for the Ganges.

    This report from the so-called “Pontifical Academy of Sciences working group of leading scientists” has been railroaded by Greenies who are presenting canards to the Pope. That Ramanathan would permit his name to be associated with this project means that he is no longer practicing science and is willing to publicly declare the fact. Shameless!

  115. Jessie quotes:

    4. ….Truth, by enabling men and women to let go of their subjective opinions and impressions, allows them to move beyond cultural and historical limitations and to come together in the assessment of the value and substance of things.

    And just how many angels can dance on the head of a pin? But be careful, you could be burnt at the stake for ‘calculating.’

  116. “Hey using Jethro Tull is my job!” (Wondering Aloud, May 9, 2011 at 9:52 am )

    I see your moniker here every now and then, Wondering, and every time I do so, it messes with my head, as I veer off into to the intro to the tune (lovely transition from C, through G and of course, into D and Am).

    Sorry for being pedantic on this, Wandering Aloud, but Ian Anderson spells it, Wond’ring Aloud! Mind you, before I got the Aqualung album, long after it was issued, I thought the title was Wandering Allowed!

  117. Well those two photos of some mountains, with a lake or a glacier, are clearly not taken from the same spot, nor are they taken with the same focal length lens, and I doubt that they are both taken on the same day of the year; whenever they were taken.

    And if they’ll change those variables, who can trust them not to make other changes.

  118. Same goes for the Everest photos. Not the same camera position or scale. Dates of the photos please ?

  119. One of the best chapters of the Brian Fagan’s Little Ice Age dealt with glaciers -namely the Alpine glaciers of Switzerland and France. From the 14th through 18th Centuries these glaciers did affect the “way of life” for the mountain dwellers. The glaciers expanded so quickly down slope that entire farms, pasture lands, and villages were subsumed. During the summer months, when the clouds cleared, sunlight would melt large portions of the outer glacial crust; small and large lakes formed. And within a few weeks the ice dams that kept this melt water in check would burst sending millions of gallons of water downslope killing and destroying everthing in its path. The poor, destitute farmers and sheppards were desperate and pleaded to Bishop Froncois de Sales. The future Swiss saint visited a number of glaciers and performed minor excorcisms.

    The amount of destruction to humans brought on by the LIA, especially in the mountains is difficult to comprehend. What if find ironic is that the Alarmists have been successful in twisting history. When glaciers expand, they do so quite quickly. While it took 3-4 centuries to melts a significant amount of tropical and mid-latitude glaciers, in as little as 150 years a glacier can doube and even triple its size.

  120. Regarding Jessie’s quote from Pope Benedict’s encyclical (May 9, 2011 at 4:42 am), the following is an example where religion and science can and often do clash:

    “She [i.e., the Church] does, however, have a mission of truth to accomplish, in every time and circumstance, for a society that is attuned to man, to his dignity, to his vocation. Without truth, it is easy to fall into an empiricist and sceptical view of life, incapable of rising to the level of praxis because of a lack of interest in grasping the values — sometimes even the meanings — with which to judge and direct it.”

    Fine, except that the implications of that exerpt potentially lead to a lot of messy thinking and pointless arguments. In our case, we are struggling with trying to uncover what the truth regarding our physical relationship to climate may be, not the Truth, as it is understood theologically. Having no direct and detailed scriptural sources on our climate change debate, the Church will corner itself in the position of having to implicitly accept and rely on empiricism and skepticism, after having rejected them from the arena of praxis. Such stuff can give one a nasty headache.

  121. Reason number 432.22 that I don’t follow organized religion any longer. I was raised a catholic…no thanks!

  122. Vatican should tell
    there is lot of ‘global warming’ in hell
    in haven it is much colder
    Do good deeds and you’ll be here for longer.

  123. I too was raised a Catholic.

    When I was 15 I had a bit of a fall out with my priest and bishop over Adam and Eve. I felt that it was an allegorical story, they believed it was fact.

    I have been an atheist for quite a while now and I often thank Father O’Dwyre and Bishop Lamont for getting me on the right track.

  124. D Matteson says: “I just finished redirecting my wife’s monthly Catholic Church contribution to the Anthony Watts – surfacestations.org fund.”

    Clearly the Church has little claim to any scientific authority. (I assume you mean the Roman Catholic Church. There are other Catholic Churches.) Somebody said, “By their fruits you shall know them.” (no pun intended). That applies to more than the Church. It applies to Warmist output like the infamous 10-10 terrorist “No Pressure” video, and all that will follow if they are not defeated.

  125. Like Sam the Skeptic, I have a (left) foot in both camps. As soon as I saw this I thought it would be a Guardianesque pop at the Catholic church, and lo…..was it so. As a denialist, I can’t agree with their conclusions, but I presume you’ll give the same treatment to other faiths ‘pontificating’, no names etc….

  126. Good thing that Vatican is interested in doing a green act. I just hope that he or his designers will be interested in window tint products that can help stop up to 80% of all solar energy coming through windows which is very helpful in our home.

  127. I would not use the case of Galileo to criticize the Catholic Church. The Inquisition nailed Galileo. By the time of Galileo, the Inquisition was an autonomous organization within the Church that did pretty much whatever pleased it.

  128. Peter Kovachev says:
    May 9, 2011 at 9:56 am …

    Interesting comment. In the perfect world, I hold that there is no division between science and religion, since ostensibly science is to avail the truth by a set of tools and religion desires to seek the truth. They are perfectly compatible.

    I refer to OPUS MAJUS by Roger Bacon in 2 respects: 1) in its language and 2) in its characterizations of obstacles to the truth.

    1) Bacon, a Catholic Monk, was the first western scientist, who among other things introduced us to the study of optics. He did so without a lexicon with words such as “transparent” and “opaque” and “back body” and “reflective”. Instead used terms familiar to him, respectively “Graceful” and “sinful” and “evil” and “hypocritical”.

    How could he describe new ideas any differently without today’s dictionary. He had what he had as a language. He was a true genius. It is improper that we retroactively harshly criticize the learned of old with the advantage of our aggregated knowledge of now.

    2) Bacon’s 4 obstacles to truth:
    translated:[the example of weak and unreliable authority; continuance of custom, regard to the opinion of the unlearned, and concealing one's own ignorance, together with the exhibition of apparent wisdom]

    This was in the 1200′s. Amazing guy.

  129. Wondering Aloud says:
    May 9, 2011 at 10:08 am
    “I think those of you assuming that a report made for some clergy, which is all this is, will somehow become Catholic doctrine have a very poor understanding of the church.

    The church is a mighty conservative institution in its own way. It is likely some eco-fanatics within the church are trying to move the church in a more green direction. It is EXTREMELY unlikely they will have any significan success.

    The green movement hates humanity, you are more likely to see Obama as the nominee of the Libertarian party than to see the church join up with Greenpeace.”

    Any support from the Church to the eco-maniacs is bad. You are undoubtedly correct regarding the any change in Church doctrine as it is reserved for only matters basic to the teachings of Jesus and the Faith. Many, many of the “rules” of the Church are, howver, NOT doctrine and the Pope only uses the term “We” when making pronouncements on issues of doctrine, “We” being him and the Holy Spirit, in those instances. So, you are correct that we will probably not see such a pronouncement from the Church or any doctrine of the sort that would officially buy into AGW. Non-doctrine, rules, other pronouncements that do not bare witness to the “truth” can still put the Church in a poor light. Point in fact, look at some of the comments on this post.

    I would like to see the Pope point out that the Church does not take an official position on issues such as these. Many times silence from the top is as bad as agreement on an issue.

  130. Why are people so surprised that the Catholic has gotten involved?

    Wasn’t it the same during Galileo’s time where the church, academia, and government were in bed with each other? Nothing has changed.

    It does sound like the church’s stance on eugenics has changed since its part of the “climate change” movement’s core beliefs.

    I’ve said this before…if trees had arms they would squeeze the living day-lights out of all the warmists so they could recover all the carbon they’re being denied. Talk about giving “carbon sequestration” a new meaning!

  131. I know it is the consensus to bash the Catholic Church in relation to Galileo but like much of what we think we know, it is false. I am not a Catholic but like the truth. Fact check: The biggest supporters of Galileo were the clergy. His biggest opponents were other scientists/secular agencies supporting the consensus. Galileo was under house arrest because he went beyond his area of expertise and started making more theological, unsupported pronouncements. See:
    The dispute between Galileo and the Catholic Church
    It’s amazing to me how many very smart people still inaccurately portray this drama of history.

  132. I spend a lot of time and effort teaching scientific method, I find profound philosophical discussions of religion too boring to follow. However, (ha, you knew that was coming) anyone who thinks science does or even can prove or disprove religion doesn’t understand either one very well.

    Back to something more interesting though; If the Vatican ever does suggest anything on this issue beyond a general “have respect for the earth and for life” kind of statement; it is very unlikely that it will be supportive of the greens. Far more likely the Vatican is positioning itself to condemn draconian meassures that cause poverty and human suffering.

    They might suggest strategies to mitigate the supposed impact on the poor instead of wasting money on wild schemes. They might use global warming fears as a reason to help the third world modernize. I’m sure any position they take wil have the entire environmental movement screaming in fury. Those of you who feel the need to vent your anti Catholic spleen have likely got it misdirected this time.

    Social justice and sustainability mean wildly different things to the Church than they do to the environmentalists and the left in general.

  133. Obviously the answer is in their own hands. They need to go on a mass ‘prayer retreat’ for several years and God will surely respond.

  134. Paul Westhaver (May 9, 2011 at 12:36 pm) says: “In the perfect world, I hold that there is no division between science and religion, since ostensibly science is to avail the truth by a set of tools and religion desires to seek the truth. They are perfectly compatible.”

    I like that description a lot. As for the compatibility bit, a fine ideal, but quite a bit of a challenge in the temporal world of ours. The problem, of course, is that the two domains, science and faith, both see themselves as complete and independent and wholly self-sufficient systems, and so tend to step on each other toes.

    I see in my mind’s eye Mr Watts impatiently tapping his fingers, wondering (aloud?) just when he should shut this increasingly theological forum down. So, to be on topic, let me remark that many “modernish” religious scientists / scientific theologians such as Bacon and Rabbi Moshe ben Maimon (Maimonides), arrived at similar conclusions about the role and place of science during, and in the case of those two, towards the end of one of recent history’s most dramatic periods of global warming: the Medieval Optimum. The Renaissance, wrongly assumed to be an improvement on high medieval thought and culture, was a time of religious wars, plagues, famines and crazed intolerance. “Oddly” enough, most of the miseries in the Renaissance and after “coincided” with cool periods and Little Ice Ages.

  135. Dear Anthony,

    You have a wise policy on your blog not to allow religious discussion. I appreciate that and understand why this must be strictly upheld.

    I would hope that you could be more considerate of your ardent Catholic fans – me for instance – who are global warming skeptics and love your blog. Could you cut back a little on the Catholic bashing that seems to creep into your blog at a fairly constant rate?

    Please reduce comments on the 500 year old grudge against the Church in regard to Galileo. The Pope was advised by the scientists – the “concensus” – of the day who had 1,500 years of hard work behind them. This hard work and study was going to be tossed out the window and they knew it. We should not ignore the fact that these “ignorant scientists” knew, loved and studied the movements of the night sky. Although these men misinterpreted their findings, they had collected and safe-guarded the data which Galileo used in his calculations. This wasn’t all political. They wanted to hold onto what they saw as their way of life.

    The Catholic Church has come a long ways from that time of Galileo. Keep in mind that it was Monsignor Georges Henri Joseph Édouard Lemaître a Belgian Roman Catholic priest, honorary prelate, professor of physics and astronomer at the Catholic University of Leuven, who proposed what became known as the Big Bang theory of the origin of the Universe. He called this the ‘hypothesis of the primeval atom’. (I got that information from Wikipedia but in this case it is accurate)

    Sincerely,
    Helen

  136. Catholic church, pfft. They abandoned science and let the aquaducts slip into ruin so water can’t have been more important than developing peculiar sexual traditions for a couple of thousand years, but of course they pestered the world with doomsday crap for equally long so this is probably just up their ally.

  137. 1DandyTroll (May 9, 2011 at 2:56 pm) says: “Catholic church, pfft. They abandoned science and let the aquaducts slip into ruin….”

    I’m not Catholic, not by far, but I can’t help cringing over such stuff, especially the following gratuitous lines which I’d rather not re-paste. In any case, “they” did not abandon science anymore than anyone else did under similar circumstances, and the aqueducts (a by-product of another global warming phase, the Roman Optimal) were abandoned by everyone once Rome came apart, for the simple reason that the population numbers, infrastructures, specialized technologies and the Barbarian invasios made such simply unsustainable…events probably linked to global cooling. The Christian, Roman Catholic world did see a number of more modest revivals of science and ingenious technologies involving wind and water power in the warmer medieval period, between about 900 to 1250 CE.

  138. It is astonishing how quickly a band of self-proclaimed skeptics can turn into credulous true believers when the topic switches to history and their own preconceptions. Any old legend or tendentious fundy propaganda – will be swallowed wholesale, with no effort made to ascertain the historical facts.

    We find once more the hoary old chestnut about Constantine founding the Church. Or the Church spreading by [somehow or other] taking over native customs in Ireland, Russia, Kerala, et al. loc. A bit of ahistorical silliness about the origin of “feudal” serfdom (as if feudalism and manorialism were the same thing). The Inquisition was “an autonomous organization that did whatever it wanted”? Really? Which inquisition? Someone mentions the idiocy of how many angels could dance on the head of a pin? Who ever pondered this? Where is it recorded, or is it just something “everyone knows”? You could be burned at the stake for “calculating”? Really? Who was so burned? Bruno, the Hermetic mystic, is somehow dubbed a “scientist.”

    As always, Galileo is trotted out for his lonely turn across the stage. He is credited with “inventing” the scientific method, as if Grosseteste or his Arabic and Greek predecessors had never lived – let alone Paul Vallius, whose class notes Galileo copied. Or for that matter, as if Fabricius, Harriot, Scheiner, Kepler, and a host of contemporaries had vanished down the memory hole.

    There was a reason why Huxley once declared that the Church had the better case. Bellarmine had told Galileo that heliocentrism could be taught as a mathematical theory – back then astronomy was a branch of mathematics, not of physics – but not as physical fact unless he had empirical proof. He had none. In twenty years of further thought, he came up only with the tides as “sloshing” caused by the spinning earth, which was wrong. He answered the Objection of the Parallax by simply hypothesizing that the stars were much farther off than currently thought; but you can’t save one unproven hypothesis by tossing in a second unproven hypothesis. Parallax among the fixed stars was described in 1803 (and later, more definitely, by Bessel) and the second unresolved problem – the predicted eastward deflection of falling bodies – was finally measured by Gugliemini in the 1790s. Consequently, when Settele prepared his new astronomy text in 1820, he included these two results, showed them to the Holy Office, and said here’s the empirical proof Bellarmine wanted. The committee mulled it over and said, Yup, that’s it. And lifted the ban on presenting heliocentrism as physical fact.

    IOW, Galileo demanded he be taken on faith and the Church had asked for empirical proof.

    History requires every bit as much attention to facts as does global cooling/global warming/climate change/——. Instead, too many here have relied on “models” of history.
    + + +

    PS. Galileo did not use Kepler’s work (correct) elliptical model. He never even read Kepler’s book (which, admittedly, is not easy reading). Nor did he make predictions from it or from Copernicus’ (incorrect) circular model. Nothing in Copernicus predicted sunspots or Jovian moons. The phases of Venus definitely drove a stake through the heart of Ptolemy; but Aristotelian physicists had always doubted Ptolemaic astronomy and the Tychonic and Ursine models also accounted for the phases of Venus.

    Kepler’s elliptical model gets no mention in the Dialogues because Galileo was committed to circular motion and still had 20 epicycles in his Copernican model. (Nor does he mention Tychonic/Ursine model, which by then had replaced the defunct Ptolemaic model.) When Kepler wrote to Galileo asking for a telescope – (because Galileo had a rep as a lens-grinder) – Galileo simply never answered him. One suspects professional jealousy. Kepler was by far the better scientist.

    The telescopic history is nicely summarized in Toby Huff’s book Intellectual Curiosity and the Scientific Revolution.
    + + +

    As regards the topic of the original post, the Pontifical Academy is tasked with providing scientific background advice to the Vatican. (I know one member, an astronomer.) It is not controlled by the Vatican, and its membership includes all sorts. Its reports are just that, and are not church policy, let alone doctrine. Whether the top scientists in the field of glaciers are grinding their own agenda is another matter entirely, and you mustn’t suppose that the Curia is entirely naive about such matters. They got burned once before when they asked a panel of top physicists about the validity of the Copernican system and the “settled science” and “consensus of scientists” was that it was “absurd in philosophy.” Perhaps the lesson ought to have been that the Church should be less accepting of secular science.

    PPS. “Social justice” is a term coined by Luigi Taparelli D’Azeglio, SJ, back in the early 1800s. Justice is a virtue and as such applies to individuals respecting that which is due unto others. The “social” part refers to the societies which men are wont to form, some of which are more natural and intimate than others: We come together not only in cities and states, “but first and most importantly in families, neighborhoods, religious bodies, clubs (guilds) and a variety of informal organizations.” Taparelli believed that “people have the right to form different levels of association and to interact through them to fulfill needs and accomplish necessary tasks. Each of these social spheres, institutions, or consortia has its own proper identity and purpose.” Each of these societies maintains its own unity so as not to lose its identity to the larger whole, nor lose the unity of the larger whole. That means the state, for example, should not usurp the prerogatives of the family. The term has been co-opted by the novelty of insisting that collectives rather than individuals practice virtue, and so is applied to vague abstractions like “high unemployment” or “world hunger.” Consequently, the term has been used by secular forces to mean “implementing the social programs I favor and which I declare must benefit people.” This absolves the individual of the obligation to practice justice himeself and ironically opens to the door both to socialist collectivization and Nietzschean/Randian egoism.

    Indeed, he understood that a just society depends on these different forms of association each being able to do what they do best. He not only insisted on freedom for these various spheres, but especially for those closest to the ground: the associations that because people are most directly involved in them, encourage personal relationships and local responsibility.

    His vision of social justice, then, emphasized freedom and respect for human beings and the small institutions through which they pursue basic needs.

    Meanwhile, the Ecumenical Patriarch has been far more into the Green agenda; but no one seems to remember that the Orthodox Church even exists.

  139. I am sorry that my attempt at humor was taken as an attack on the catholic church. My best and favorite college professor was a Jesuit with 2 doctorates in mathematics and i am proud of my graduation from a good Jesuit university.

  140. So much for your tithes going to feed the poor.
    Move over rover, let the Warmers take over.

  141. As with anything involving the Catholic Church; I would advise patience. The AGW crowd has some strange philosophical and political bedfellows, that are not going to sit well with Rome after careful deliberation.

  142. Perhaps the Vatican has looked at the carbon taxes and thought “we want a piece of that” after all they are the Masters of Indulgences.

  143. And the moral imperative of claiming science based policies while lacking said science?

  144. It was with significant disappointment, to observe the comments directed against an individual for giving an OK to a study, relating to “observed retreat of mountain glaciers, it’s causes and consequences”.

    Considering the comments, it would seem that one wondered over to a AGW site, where vitriolic and ignorant language is common place. It is sad, that this site, one that prides itself on reason, intelligence, and science, would have comments worthy of the DeVinci Code.

    It is also unwise to judge past civilizations to harshly. As a old history professor of mine once observed, someday this civilization will also be judged, by future standards.

  145. I was raised Catholic and fought it tooth and toenail. First, I wanted a glow in the dark rosary for my first communion. And actually got one. Then, I discovered that I had to confess my sins, which at age 7, I had not idea what they were, so I made them up. At the age of 12 I was told that I would have to go through Confirmation. Which to me meant kissing some old guy’s finger and letting him slap me on the cheek. I told my grandmother that I would kick him in the balls if he so much as touched me and I was not going to kiss a finger, not even if it was Jesus’ finger. I was the only redheaded Irish girl allowed to go through Confirmation without the humilation of said finger kissing and cheek slapping.

    At the ripe old age of 20-something, I was ex-communicated. Can’t remember what bratty thing I said to the priest during donut hour, but he ex-communicated me on the spot.

  146. Easy now, Anthony, if I sent every editor a letter when they posted filler, I’d have a booked calendar for quite some time. Don’t take it personally, I just don’t see the news value in the story. Really, it could have waited until they presented it to the Pope, and then we’d have something to read about. My editorial opinion of course, but then the comments are opened for opining, right? I’m not digging on you or Scripps, but I just don’t see what value this adds to the discussion. Now, if PBXVI were to make driving a sin you had to admit at confession, that’d be something. No hard feelings Mr. Watts, it wasn’t an attack on your editorial choice, just a comment on the original story itself. No need to write Scripps and tell them what they already know. :-)

  147. Pamela Gray says:
    May 9, 2011 at 7:32 pm

    From the Catholic Encyclopedia http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/05678a.htm

    Who can excommunicate?
    Excommunication is an act of ecclesiastical jurisdiction, the rules of which it follows. Hence the general principle: whoever has jurisdiction in the forum externum, properly so called, can excommunicate, but only his own subjects. Therefore, whether excommunications be a jure (by the law) or ab homine (under form of sentence or precept), they may come from the pope alone or a general council for the entire Church; from the provincial council for an ecclesiastical province; from the bishop for his diocese; from the prelate nullius for quasi-diocesan territories; and from regular prelates for religious orders. Moreover, anyone can excommunicate who, by virtue of his office, even when delegated, has contentious jurisdiction in the forum externum; for instance, papal legates, vicars capitular, and vicars-general. But a parish priest cannot inflict this penalty nor even declare that it is incurred, i.e. he cannot do so in an official and judicial manner. The subjects of these various authorities are those who come under their jurisdiction chiefly on account of domicile or quasi-domicile in their territory; then by reason of the offence committed while on such territory; and finally by reason of personal right, as in the case of regulars.

    Pamela, your parish priest had no right of excommunication, but he DID have the right to deny communion (which too few priests actually exercise, in my opinion) – and I’ve got a real good idea just what it was you said to Father O’Kelley… I don’t agree with the Church on that issue, but Father O’Kelley doesn’t have a lot of lee-way. Even in Catholicism there are “workarounds”…

    As for the Catholic-bashing on this thread… I am reallly, really disappointed.

  148. John from New Zealand says:
    May 9, 2011 at 7:35 pm

    If the Vatican wants to go down the path of political lobbying then they better be prepared to lose their charitable tax status. Greenpeace have just lost theirs on appeal in the New Zealand courts.

    John from New Zealand,

    If you would like me to, I can crush the puny rationale for censoring opinions you don’t like. Losing your charitable tax status over political activity is an absurd farce of democracy and I am sorry to hear about your country’s first step towards autocracy. I can, however, refer you to a great quote that may help you understand why charitable organizations should be allowed to conduct political activities:

    An unconditional right to say what one pleases about public affairs is what I consider to be the minimum guarantee of the First Amendment — Justice Hugo Black in NY Times Company v. Sullivan

  149. There are too many wrong facts in that report, and the worrying thing is that Herrs Haberli and Kaser are perfectly aware of the wrong claims, yet they chose to ignore any evidence against heir unsupported thesis

    They say:
    “but the pace of retreat has been much faster since the 1980s”

    This is patently untrue. See the cyclical fluctuation of Swiss glaciers compiled by the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology here:

    http://glaciology.ethz.ch/messnetz/lengthvariation.html

    Or the variation in length for some of the bigger glaciers in the Alps during the last 3000 years:

    http://www.giub.unibe.ch/klimet/docs/climdyn_2005_Holzhauser_et_al.pdf

    or the Alps with less ice in the recent past:

    http://hol.sagepub.com/content/11/3/255.short

    etc., etc.

    I wonder what is the point of such a biased report with so much evidence against it and so readily available.

  150. You have a wise policy on your blog not to allow religious discussion. I appreciate that and understand why this must be strictly upheld.

    WUWT is a science blog. And if the Catholic church sticks its nose in scientific matters, then skeptical commenters in this blog are entitled to rub that nose on the floor.

    The Catholic church sponsors a ‘scientific’ study that embraces CAGW mantra. Why should that be above criticism? Why should people not be allowed to examine the record of Big Religion and express dissent against them here?

    I would hope that you could be more considerate of your ardent Catholic fans – me for instance – who are global warming skeptics and love your blog. Could you cut back a little on the Catholic bashing that seems to creep into your blog at a fairly constant rate?

    Well, how about CAGW skeptics, like yours truly, who also love this blog but happen to be a member of the community of Green/socialist/left/liberal/commie/government conspirators?

    Our progressive moral and political beliefs get a beating all the time here in the comments pages from right-wing nutters, sometimes even in the main post. You don’t see us whinging and whining in chorus about it.

    I am happy that in its political tone WUWT somehow manages to strike the right balance. Gods know progressive politics deserve more criticism for being the first to embrace this ‘scientific’ global warming religion.

    Anyone following suit must also be showcased for criticism, even if they are men of god, or gods themselves.

  151. Both the religion of the ideological environment movement (RIEM) and the religion of the Roman Catholic Church (RCC) have two central unresolved problems that reduce their effectiveness significantly.

    The first is the problem of permanently indoctrinating existing generations of children and sub-adults with original sin. With more open society occurring, this battle is being lost by both religions.

    The second problem (and the most difficult one) is the need to constantly postpone the parousia. In the RCC’s case Christ’s second coming has been much delayed compared to the expectation of the first and second century Christians and the delay had to be bureaucratically institutionalized . . . . greatly weakening its spiritual effectiveness for the masses. In the RIEM case the delay of catastrophic AGW occurrences is continuously occurring . . . . the masses are losing faith (and therefore their strength to argue). In either case, Roman Catholic Church and RIEM, reality is not supportive of their parousia.

    Although I am not religious, this is not per se an attack on either religion. It is just comparative analysis.

    I find the history of religion and the history of science to be the key in highlighting the two major protagonists in Western Civilization. The struggle continues.

    John

  152. The Catholic church sponsors a ‘scientific’ study that embraces CAGW mantra. Why should that be above criticism?

    Oh, that explains all the hoo-hah about Galileo, inquisitions, Constantine, indulgences, and sundry other irrelevant and (since they are based on models of history, not historical facts) inaccurate asides.

    The Church did not “sponsor” the study. The Pontifical Academy of Sciences did. The Curia is always asking for secular advice on secular matters, such as science. The problem is that a great many scientists, experts in their field, believe in the models of climate, not climatic facts.

    I find the history of religion and the history of science to be the key in highlighting the two major protagonists in Western Civilization. The struggle continues.

    Oh, no! Not that hoary old chestnut of model-based history! A hundred years after professional historians shook loose from Draper’s bit of tendentious propaganda. Oh, well. The model says this must be happening; therefore, it must be happening.

  153. sHx says:
    May 10, 2011 at 2:39 am….

    You, too, are right to complain if your beliefs are unfairly maligned in the way Catholicism has been in this thread, or any other thread on the internet.

    Helen Hawkins’ criticism is also valid in that we don’t condemn democracy because fools are elected, nor science because charlatans are funded. Likewise, a religion is not to be condemned because it’s practicioners are less than perfect at times. If there is to be a debate about religion it should be at a different venue.

    Moreover, criticisms of the Church on this topic should be limited to what the Church has said about “Climate Change”. The Vatican (Church) has said nothing about CAGW, yet.

  154. “”””” David Falkner says:
    May 9, 2011 at 10:09 pm
    John from New Zealand says:
    May 9, 2011 at 7:35 pm

    If the Vatican wants to go down the path of political lobbying then they better be prepared to lose their charitable tax status. Greenpeace have just lost theirs on appeal in the New Zealand courts.

    John from New Zealand,

    If you would like me to, I can crush the puny rationale for censoring opinions you don’t like. Losing your charitable tax status over political activity is an absurd farce of democracy and I am sorry to hear about your country’s first step towards autocracy. I can, however, refer you to a great quote that may help you understand why charitable organizations should be allowed to conduct political activities:

    An unconditional right to say what one pleases about public affairs is what I consider to be the minimum guarantee of the First Amendment — Justice Hugo Black in NY Times Company v. Sullivan “””””

    Well David, that seems to be a strange position to take. Are you not yourself seeking to suppress John’s “free speech” ?

    As for the Status of Greenpeace; about which I take no position; I don’t see where anybody has interfered with their right of free speech. I’m sure that in New Zeland, they enjoy every bit as much free speech opportunity as say, in the USA, where in fact that is enshrined in the Bill of Rights.

    As near as I can tell, the people of New Zealand have simply said (with their own free speech processes, that the tax paying public of New Zealand simply doen’t want to have to foot the bill to fund the antics of Greenpeace, who still are free to speak their mind.

    I’m not going to pay for Greenpeace world cruise travelling; just as I am not going to pay for the Cousteaus to harass sharks by killing fish for them, to get dramatic footage of frenzied shark feeding to entice gullible Americans to pay for their recreational hobbies.

    I’d like somebody to pay for me to go out and have a good time in remote areas. But I don’t mind them doing it; so long as they can afford it, and they don’t mess those places up too much, with all their poking around.

  155. Ye Olde Statistician has pwned the lot of the anti-Catholic bigots in this combox. Fun to watch!

  156. George E. Smith says:
    May 10, 2011 at 10:38 am

    Well David, that seems to be a strange position to take. Are you not yourself seeking to suppress John’s “free speech” ?

    I’m afraid I don’t follow. How would I be suppressing John’s free speech here? Because I think Greenpeace should be allowed to be politically active? Tax exemptions are not payments. The taxpayers of New Zealand do not pay anything for Greenpeace activities unless they willingly contribute. The government simply does not tax them. That is not a subsidy because it is not an action, it is a lack of action.

    They are, essentially, being punished for having their political opinion as far as I can tell from what John has said. Now, if they have broken some laws or whatnot, I can’t tell. I will say that idiots who want to tax charitable organizations for the crime of having a political opinion should stay in New Zealand.

    As far as Greenpeace goes, I’m rooting for Japan.

  157. “””””Scripps Institution of Oceanography said, “A panel of some of the world’s leading climate and glacier scientists co-chaired by a Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UC San Diego researcher issued a report today commissioned by the Vatican’s Pontifical Academy of Sciences citing the moral imperative before society to properly address climate change.” “”””””

    ——-

    If Scripps’ statement is correct about the Vatican’s reason for commissioning the study, the theology supporting the Vatican’s moral stance is open for our discussion. They opened the door. : )

    Criticize the RCC and Scripps for opening the door on theology and morals, not the commenters for engaging.

    John

  158. It may come as a shock to Vatican scientists or other glacier melting alarmists, that glaciers are supposed to melt during Interglacial Warmup Periods. We are at the very end of the present 10,500 year old Interglacial, and not all glaciers are melting. In that there are glaciers that are growing should lend credence to the inevitability that we are exiting the present Interglacial and are beginning the next Ice Age.

    It matters not what the Arctic Ice Cap does in the last 6 years, or how many glaciers here or there are melting. The only thing that matters is: what is the change in the Mass Balance of the entire world inventory of ice. The answer is: there is not much change at all! So, what’s the problem?

  159. John Whitman says:
    May 10, 2011 at 2:01 pm
    “””””Scripps Institution of Oceanography said, “A panel of some of the world’s leading climate and glacier scientists co-chaired by a Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UC San Diego researcher issued a report today commissioned by the Vatican’s Pontifical Academy of Sciences citing the moral imperative before society to properly address climate change.” “”””””

    ——-

    If Scripps’ statement is correct about the Vatican’s reason for commissioning the study, the theology supporting the Vatican’s moral stance is open for our discussion. They opened the door. : )

    Criticize the RCC and Scripps for opening the door on theology and morals, not the commenters for engaging.

    ——————-

    As yet the Scripps Institution does not speak for the Church or the Pope.

  160. David Falkner

    Greenpeace & the Catholic Church are free to say what they like. A removal of Greenpeace’s charitable status is not a punishment, but a legal acknowledgement that their actions do not warrant such a status. If a change in their tax status is a result of their actions then that is something they bring upon themselves. Is there a reason why they should be allowed to continue to use charitable tax exemption if they have been judged legally ineligible by the New Zealand High Court?

    If my tax status changes as a result of something I do (or say) that is something I weigh up before I do it, & is why I employ an accountant. No need to get angry I just follow the tax laws not make or enforce them, and if Greenpeace have to follow them like me & everyone else I think that’s fair enough. Greenpeace are free to say what they like, but not under the guise of a charity when they’ve exhibited themselves for all the world to see as a political advocacy group.

  161. Boy Oh boy. Just mention the word ‘Vatican’ and out come all the anti-Catholic/anti-religious folks who seem to react to the word in the same way that Pavlov’s dogs reacted to the sound of the bells. Hey, folks, let’s not bother with facts; let’s just keep to our ill-informed prejudices. That makes life so much simpler.

    However, some people might actually be interested in a few facts. The Pontifical Academy of Sciences is NOT the Vatican. It is not even made up entirely of Catholics. This is what Wikipedia says;

    “The new members of the Academy are elected by the body of Academicians and chosen from men and women of every race and religion based on the high scientific value of their activities and their high moral profile. They are then officially appointed by the Roman Pontiff. The Academy is governed by a President, appointed from its members by the Pope, who is helped by a scientific Council and by the Chancellor. Initially made up of 80 Academicians, 70 who were appointed for life.”

    One of the current members of the PAC is Stephen Hawking. Now everybody knows that he’s a raving Catholic. (sarc)

    Of course, all this frothing at the mouth we see from so many of the comments could have been avoided if the word Vatican had not been used. I just wonder what it is that makes people who are normally (hopefully) highly respectful of keeping to the facts engage in so much sheer tripe. As a reader of this blog who respects its high scientific values I am very disappointed in the heading for this article. As for the folks who have responded in the prejudiced way that they have I would just say that it might be an idea to check facts before sounding off.

  162. polistra says:
    May 9, 2011 at 7:30 am
    Not especially new. Rome, along with all the other mainstream religions, switched from Jehovah to Gaia about 10 years ago…….
    ____________

    If by Rome you mean the Catholic Church could you please provide evidence of the switch. Apparently you’ve known about this for some time.

    Making that sort of statement, without evidence, seems a little like me saying you became a wiccan 10 years ago, ( I don’t know you). Except it’s less serious because you’re far less important than the Catholic Church.

    So, are you a wiccan?

  163. John From New Zealand says:
    May 10, 2011 at 3:51 pm

    Is there a reason why they should be allowed to continue to use charitable tax exemption if they have been judged legally ineligible by the New Zealand High Court?

    No there is not. But I don’t have the whole story, so I can’t make a judgment on Greenpeace. The assertion you made, that I take umbrage with is:

    If the Vatican wants to go down the path of political lobbying then they better be prepared to lose their charitable tax status.

    This implies that the law in New Zealand does not allow a charitable organization to lobby for political changes. That is an absurd restriction. It does depend on what New Zealand law defines as political lobbying, and if there is a limitation on the amount of lobbying (which would be totally acceptable) but I am just as happy to point out that using that as leverage to silence the opinions of charitable groups only injures the discourse of your society in New Zealand.

    Greenpeace are free to say what they like, but not under the guise of a charity when they’ve exhibited themselves for all the world to see as a political advocacy group.

    This is the part I have no problem with. My point is that you think the Vatican should lose their tax status for receiving a report from scientists accredited in their field. Also, the entire Catholic Church advocates. It is a primary purpose. Bring that suit and see if you win. That is your only reasonable course of action.

  164. David Faulkner

    If the Catholic Church (which claims to be a religious organisation in the service of God), were to promote the theory of AGW (which has nothing to do with their religion) as part of church policy, then their status is no longer purely religious. What connection is there between the Catholic faith & AGW? None. Commissioning a report doesn’t cross the line, but promotion of AGW does. If Greenpeace, which is an environmental group, can’t defend their status, the Catholic Church (or any other church for that matter) haven’t got a hope in hell.

  165. John from New Zealand

    The CC already advocates everywhere against euthanasia, abortion, same-sex marriage, the death penalty, legalization of drugs, divorce, artificial insemination, embryonic stem-cell research, birth control, and more. How does adding AGW factor into your feelings one way or another?

  166. It would have been most interesting if the report, of this commission, had formed the opposite opinion. Would the Pope been hailed as a hero (even before he read it), or would the above “complementary” comments continue?

  167. Ye Olde Statistician has pwned the lot of the anti-Catholic bigots in this combox. Fun to watch!

    Yes, son! Now, go to you room and play some Counterstrike with your friends.

  168. David Falkner

    ‘The CC already advocates everywhere against euthanasia, abortion, same-sex marriage, the death penalty, legalization of drugs, divorce, artificial insemination, embryonic stem-cell research, birth control, and more. How does adding AGW factor into your feelings one way or another?’

    Theses are issues related to their religious teachings based upon their doctrine. No mention of AGW in the bible.

  169. John From New Zealand says:
    May 11, 2011 at 12:19 am
    David Falkner

    ‘The CC already advocates everywhere against euthanasia, abortion, same-sex marriage, the death penalty, legalization of drugs, divorce, artificial insemination, embryonic stem-cell research, birth control, and more. How does adding AGW factor into your feelings one way or another?’

    Theses are issues related to their religious teachings based upon their doctrine. No mention of AGW in the bible.

    ______________
    Something being un-mentioned in the Bible does not preclude Christians from having an opinion on it. That would be silly.

    Christians are called to be goods stewards of the earth, and all of creation. If CAGW were a real threat all human beings would be morally compelled to do what they could to protect our environment, in ways that the best experts recommend. Hence the Church’s effort to find out the facts from competent authorities before asking adherents to act.

    Christians are not called to have their Church advocate for, finance, or campaign for specific political parties. I suspect this is the distinction in the case of Greenpeace in New Zealand.

  170. If the Catholic Church (which claims to be a religious organisation in the service of God), were to promote the theory of AGW (which has nothing to do with their religion) as part of church policy, then their status is no longer purely religious.

    That’s what some folks were saying when the Church preached against segregation in the US south back in the 50s.

    No mention of AGW in the bible.

    Fundies are always upset that the Church derives so much of her message through reason. It ain’t in the book! they cry. But the traditional churches (Orthodox, Roman, Coptic, Assyrian) use revelation as a starting point for reasoning about the world, not as a collection of proof-texts, geasa, and tabus.

    Further, the Church does not draw scientific conclusions, but simply accepts the scientific consensus. If that consensus is wrong, as it was in Galileo’s case and possibly in the AGW case, you cannot fault the Church for deferring to the scientists over matters of science. What matters is the moral actions informed by the science. It might be wise to wait until the Church does speak on the matter before getting your shorts in a knot because your model-based history already “proves” what “should” be happening.

  171. Ye Olde Statistician says:
    May 11, 2011 at 10:28 am

    A more elegant evisceration. Philosopher?

  172. Well, others beat me to it. But yes, that is pretty much correct. You can’t blame the CC for deferring to the scientists. You can blame the scientists for being wrong, yes, and we’ll agree there.

  173. Ok guys, fine, you win. Anthropogenic Global Warming is part of the Christian faith and the teachings of the churches, I believe you.

  174. you win. Anthropogenic Global Warming is part of the Christian faith

    No, it isn’t and no one has said it is. Don’t you get straw on your knuckles flailing away like that?

  175. Just for fun I checked how many times the Catechism of The Catholic Church mentions the following words;

    Reason 218
    Science 114
    Logic 65

    Climate 3
    Global 1
    Weather 0
    Greenhouse 0
    CO 2 0
    Denier 0
    Hockey Stick 0

    Draw your own conclusions.

  176. It’s hilarious when Ye Olde Statistician takes time to give a serious lesson in thinking to bigots. If it were a boxing match, the ref would have stopped the fight by now.

  177. I’ve seen Ye Olde Statistician work his magic in other forums, and it is invariably a wonder to behold. Perhaps someone could come up with a link-list of all combox exchanges featuring YOS, so we can enjoy more of his writings. Please?

  178. Yes, it was fun to watch the bigots’ “argument” (read, misleading attacks) being entirely demoralized.

    People who were supposed to be reasonable skeptics buying into anti-Catholic fundamentalist propaganda.

    The myth about Constantine? Really? What’s next, you will claim the the Pope is the Antichrist because his name translates to 666?

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