From the Congressional Record, this speech was given on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives. It is worth reading and posting elsewhere.
Lieberman-Warner Debate: Congressman Rohrabacher’s Floor Speech on Global Warming
MAN-MADE GLOBAL WARMING
House of Representatives – May 14, 2008
The SPEAKER pro tempore (Mr. Space). Under the Speaker’s announced policy of January 18, 2007, the gentleman from California (Mr. Rohrabacher) is recognized for 60 minutes.
Mr. ROHRABACHER. Mr. Speaker, I preface my remarks with a personal statement that, while I am opposed to the advocates of man-made global warming theories, I am committed to a clean and healthy environment, to purifying our air, our water, and our soil; all of this for the sake of the people of this planet, including my three children, Anika, Tristan and Christian. I do this not because of some paranoid theory that humans are changing the climate of the world, but instead, I am very concerned about the health of the people of the world and, thus, committed to clean air, clean soil, and clean water.
Thus, we have, today, to take a look at the issues of global warming and pollution that confront our society because there are enormous implications to this whole discussion of what has been called “man-made global warming.”
Only 18 months ago the refrain “Case closed: Global warming is real,” was repeated as if the mantra from some religious zealots. It was pounded into the public consciousness over the airwaves, in print, and even at congressional hearings, “Case closed.” Well, this was obviously a brazen attempt to end open discussion and to silence differing views by dismissing the need for seriously contrary arguments and seriously listening to both sides of an argument. And rather than hearing both sides of the argument, this was an attempt to dismiss arguments even though the person making the arguments might have a very impressive credential or might be a very educated scientist or someone else who should be listened to.
And yes, there are dozens, if not hundreds, of prominent scientists and meteorologists, the heads of science departments at major universities, and others, who are highly critical of the man-made global warming theory. There is Dr. Richard Lindzen of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He has been adamant in his opposition, as has a Bjarne Andresen of the University of Copenhagen, Adreas Prokoph, a professor of earth sciences at the University of Ottawa, Dr. William Gray, a famous hurricane expert and former President of the American Meteorological Association, and Dr. Kevin Trenberth, the head of the Climate Analysis Section at the National Center of Atmospheric Research. All of these are respected scholars, all skeptical of the unwarranted alarmism that we are being pressured to accept.
But their views and those of so many more prominent scholars and scientists don’t matter. The debate is over. Al Gore has his Nobel Prize, and the film, “An Inconvenient Truth,” its Academy Award. So shut up and get your mind in lockstep with the politically correct prevailing wisdom, or at least what the media tells us is the prevailing wisdom. And no questions, please, the case is closed. We heard that dozens and dozens of times.
So what is this theory that now is so accepted that no more debate is needed or even tolerated? The man-made global warming theory may be presented as scientific truism, but it is not. It is a disturbing theory that the Earth began a warming cycle 150 years ago that differed greatly from all the other warming and cooling cycles in the Earth’s past. This warming cycle of 150 years ago, we keep being told, is tied directly to mankind’s use of fossil fuels, basically oil and coal, which, of course, oil and coal and these fuels, these so-called fossil fuels, have powered our industries and made modern civilization possible.
Fossil fuels, we are told, puts an ever-increasing so-called level of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, and the most prevalent of these gases, of course, being carbon dioxide, CO2. This increase in CO2 causes the warming that we are supposedly experiencing today. This man-made warming cycle, according to the theory, is rapidly approaching a tipping point when the world’s temperatures will abruptly jump and accelerate with dire and perhaps apocalyptic consequences for the entire planet.
For skeptics of this hypothesis, the consequence of accepting this theory, the consequences are far more dire than any of the consequences we’re supposed to be suffering out of a predicted rise in temperature. And by the way, that rise in temperature, of course, isn’t really happening, which we will discuss a little bit later.
If one accepts this as fact rather than theory, this idea that man-made global warming is overwhelming our planet, then one would be expected to also accept controls, regulations, taxation, international planning and enforcement, mandated lifestyle changes, lowering expectations, limiting consumer choice, as well as
personal and family sacrifices that are all going to be necessary for us to save the planet from–well, from us.
It really takes a lot to frighten people into accepting such personally restrictive mandates that would result from implementing a global warming-based agenda. People’s lives will change if we decide to implement a global warming-based agenda. Yes, people’s lives will change, but not for the better if we have to end, for example, discount airline tickets and cheap travel.
Most people who listen to the global warming advocates don’t understand that the global warming advocates believe that jet planes are some of the worst CO2 polluters, and thus they have to be restricted, according to the theory. So how many people really do want to end the cheap airline tickets that can be had over the Internet?
Obviously one of the goals will be to severely restrict the use of private automobiles. Sure. Now, we know that. The fact that the automobile has been targeted for the last 20 years certainly suggests that automobiles are on the hit list. But don’t worry, we may have to give up our automobiles, but the rich and the government officials will still have their private jets, their Suburbans, and even their limousines. But the rest of us, of course, will be relegated to public transportation. And we will have very limited travel rights unless we can, of course, afford the higher and higher prices.
Global warming predictions appear designed to strike fear into the heart of those malcontents who just won’t willingly accept the mandates in their lifestyle changes that are needed in order to save the planet. These people, of course, won’t accept things like higher food prices, which will come with an implementation of global warming mandates. And of course they certainly won’t accept less meat in their diet. That’s right, part of the manmade global warming theory and how we’re going to solve this is to wean mankind away from meat.
A 2006 report entitled “Livestock’s Long Shadow” to the United Nations mentions livestock emissions and grazing, and it places the blame for global warming squarely on the hind parts of cows. Livestock, the report claims, accounts for 18 percent of the gases that supposedly cause the global warming of our climate. Cows are greenhouse-emitting machines. Fuel for fertilizer and meat production and transportation, as well as clearing the fields for grazing, produce 9 percent of the global CO2 emissions, according to the report. And also, cows produce ammonia, causing acid rain, of course.
Now, if that’s not bad enough, all of these numbers are projected in this report to double by the year 2050. Well, not only are we then going to have to cut personal transportation, which will keep us at home, but when we stay at home, we can’t even have a bbq. And heck, they won’t even let us have a hamburger.
I would like to point out that before the introduction of cattle, millions upon millions of buffalo dominated the Great Plains of America. They were so thick you could not see where the herd started and where it ended. I can only assume that the anti-meat, manmade global warming crowd must believe that buffalo farts have more socially redeeming value than the same flatulence emitted by cattle. Yes, this is absurd, but the deeper one looks into this global warming juggernaut, the weirder this movement becomes and the more denial is evident.
Ten years ago, for example, the alarmists predicted that by now we would be clearly plagued by surging temperatures. In testimony before Congress 20 years ago, now, says James Hansen, a man who has repeatedly challenged people who simply want to make sure that his views are balanced off at NASA, but NASA’s James Hansen 20 years ago predicted CO2 would shoot up and global temperatures would shoot up by more than one-third of a degree Celsius during the 1990s.
So a rise in temperature was predicted, and it would lead to what? Rising sea levels. In the end, we’ll have rising sea levels, perhaps even cities under water, droughts and famines, and of course an increase in tropical diseases. Yes, tropical diseases. Sometimes it’s difficult for me to hear it when certain environmentalists use that as an example, considering the fact that tropical diseases, namely malaria, has killed millions of children in the Third World because the environmentalists have been successful in banning DDT. But that’s another issue.
But the point is there are serious consequences, perhaps unintended consequences to following nonsensical extremism in the arena of the environment.
So were the predictions of global heating correct? Forget “case closed.” The question needs to be answered. Were all of these predictions correct? Mr. Hansen said it would rise by a third of a degree just a little over a decade ago. And the answer is that the predictions of a decade ago have turned out to be dramatically wrong. Temperatures during that decade rose only one-third of the jump predicted by Hansen, a modest 0.11, one-third of what he had predicted.
Furthermore, numerous and powerful hurricanes that were forecast by the National Hurricane Center, for example, at NOAA and others, well, by now we haven’t seen such a trend, and by now we were led to believe there would be a drought and a melting of the ice caps would be clearly upon us. My beautiful Sierra Nevada Mountains in California were due to heat up, dry up, brown up, and burn, burn, burn. Yep, during the entire Clinton administration, we heard these predictions over and over again. During the Clinton administration, we saw scientists produce study after study predicting the horrific impact of the unstoppable onslaught of man-made global warming, which we were led to believe would be overwhelming us right now. Right now. Of course, if there was even a hint that the conclusion of their research wouldn’t back up the theory of man-made global warming, these scientists wouldn’t have seen one red cent from the Federal research pool during the Clinton administration.
In a September, 2005, article from Discovery Magazine, Dr. William Gray, now an emeritus professor of atmospheric science at Colorado State University and a former president of the American Meteorological Association, was asked if funding problems that he was experiencing and has been experiencing could be traced to his skepticism of man-made global warming. His response: “I had NOAA money for 30 years, and then when the Clinton administration came in and Gore started directing some of the environmental stuff, I was cut off. I couldn’t get any money from NOAA. They turned down 13 straight proposals from me.” This man is one of the most prominent hurricane experts in the world, cut off during the Clinton-Gore administration because he had been skeptical of global warming.
In fact, Al Gore’s first act as Vice President was to insist that William Harper be fired as the Chief Scientist at the Department of Energy. Now, why was that? Well, that’s because William Harper had uttered words indicating that he was open minded to the issue of global warming. So off with his head. They didn’t want someone who was open minded. They wanted someone who was going to provide grants based on people who would verify this man-made global warming theory. Now, that was 1993 when Mr. Harper was relieved, the first year of the Clinton-Gore administration. So for over a decade, all we got was a drumbeat of one-sided research, setting the stage for the false claim that there is a scientific consensus about whether or not man-made global warming is real.
Unfortunately, for all those scientists who went along with the scheme, now, over a decade later, there is a big problem. Contrary to what all those scientists living on their Federal research grants predicted, the world hasn’t been getting warmer. In fact, for the last 7 years, there has been no warming at all, which has been verified even by, for example, Michel Jarraud of the World Meteorological Organization. He’s their Secretary General. He reluctantly admitted that global temperatures have not risen since 1998, according to a BBC article. Global snowfall is at record levels and there are fewer, not more, hurricanes.
Furthermore, there is some melting in the Arctic. We all know that there is some melting in the Arctic because we hear about it over and over again. In fact, NBC did some special on the melting of the Arctic and how bad it is and showed the pictures of penguins sitting on a diminishing piece of ice in the Arctic. Except there was a problem with that story. You see, penguins don’t live in the Arctic; they live in the Antarctic. There are no penguins in the Arctic. So NBC had it wrong. Somebody must have told them that the penguins from the Arctic were being victimized by global warming. In fact, in the Antarctic, where the penguins are, there is a buildup of ice. It is getting cooler. And in the Arctic, of course, we do recognize there has been a warming in the Arctic, likely due to ocean currents that have changed in the last few years and not due to CO2 that comes from somebody’s SUV.
After hearing about the extinction of the polar bear, which has been drummed into our heads, we now hear that–and by the way, just today the polar bear was put on an endangered species list. But are the polar bears really disappearing? We now hear from Dr. Mitchell Taylor from the Department of the Environment under the Canadian territory of Nunavut and other experts, I might add, who suggest, yes, all but one or two species of the polar bears are flourishing. Yes, of the twenty-odd species, there are perhaps one or two that are suffering and not doing well, but all the rest of the species of polar bear are expanding. In fact, we don’t have a situation with fewer polar bears; we’ve got more polar bears. Yet our government is putting the polar bear on an endangered species list, saying that if the ice cap melts, the polar bears will all be going away because their habitat has been destroyed.
Unfortunately, the debate on this case is not closed. So explaining emerging obvious differences between the reality and the theory needs to be addressed by the people who have been advocating global warming. The case is not closed. The gnomes of climate theory now have to come up with explanations for us of why it was predicted that the weather would be this way at this time and it is not. Why is it that basically we’ve had stable weather, if not a little cooler weather, for the last 8 years?
The first attempt to basically cover their tracks about this noticeable dichotomy in what they predicted and what was happening happened a few years ago, and it went very slowly but very cleverly. The words “climate change” have now replaced the words “global warming.” Get that? Every time you hear it now, half the time they are going to be using the words “climate change” where those very same people were so adamant about “global warming” only 4 or 5 years ago. So no matter what happens now, now that they’ve changed it to “climate change” rather than global warming, whatever happens to the weather pattern, whether it’s hotter or cooler, it can be presented as further verification of human-caused change. If you just had “human-caused warming,” it would have to be at least warming for them to actually have any verification of what they were trying to say. But right now by using “climate change,” they can bolster their right to be taken seriously upon recommending policies, even though no matter what direction the climate goes, it is justified by how they are labeling themselves.
I’m sorry, fellows. Do you really think the world is filled with morons? When it comes to bait and switch, used car salesmen are paragons of virtue compared to this global warming crowd. Excuse me. It’s not the “global warming” crowd now; it’s the “climate change” crowd. Of course, they don’t want any of us to own automobiles; so
what the heck. They can act like used car salesmen because there will be more jobs for them as being advocates in the climate change arena.
We just need to ask ourselves, if a salesman gives a strong pitch and claims something that is later found to be wrong, totally wrong, when does one stop trusting that salesman? Then if he starts playing word games, changing the actual words that he’s using about the same product rather than just admitting an error, isn’t it reasonable to stop trusting him?
Yes, Al Gore and company, we have noticed that you are now saying “climate change” rather than “global warming.” I know that people tried to slip it in, but we have noticed, and there is something behind this that the American people should take note of. Why has that changed? Well, that’s because the world has not been getting warmer in these last 7 years, as they predicted it would be.
So instead of word games, what these advocates need to explain is what is happening in the real world today and why it doesn’t match what they said was going to happen based on their “case closed, man-made global warming is real.” They must realize that someone is bound to notice that last winter was unusually cold and that chilly weather seems to be the trend. It actually snowed in Denver just less than a month ago, and people have commented on the chilliness of the weather this year.
So now we see a beehive of activity going on. Those federally funded scientists are trying to save some modicum of credibility by adjusting their computers and coming up with some explanations that keep man-made global warming as a theory but explains away the current dichotomy between what they said would happen and what is actually happening. Of course, computer models were used to justify their hysteria and their hysteric warming predictions to begin with. So now the computer’s information input is readjusted and we can see all these things coming out of it.
Well, there’s a lot of questions that need to be answered and a lot of things that were told to us that obviously are not true and are not consistent with what’s been going on and what we see happening around us today.
And why is this of such concern to us? Why are we concerned that global warming as a theory has been presented and that it’s false, and why should we be so concerned that it’s being accepted? What could be the negative results of just accepting it from some people who might be very sincere, very sincere and concerned about the planet?
Well, what happens in such cases as this is that we have situations that occur and people then actually come to the point where they are focused on aspects of what’s going on in the world that will not make it better but instead have terrible consequences in and of themselves.
For example, a deadly cyclone just brought death and destruction to Burma, and it was a horrible thing. Burma is a country that is run by a vicious dictatorship, and after the cyclone went through Burma, the dictatorship wouldn’t even permit our supplies to be given to those people of Burma. Well, Al Gore is so committed to this idea of global warming, which, of course, most people call “climate change,” that when commenting on Burma, instead of talking about the monstrous nature of the Burmese regime, instead he had to say, “The trend toward more category five storms–the larger ones and the trend toward stronger and more destructive storms appears to be linked to global warming and specifically to the impact of global warming on higher ocean temperatures in the top couple of hundred feet of the ocean, which drives convection energy and moisture into these storms and makes them more powerful.”
What should Al Gore’s reaction have been? Well, what it should have been was “The Burmese regime is despicable. The Burmese people are suffering. They are dying by the hundreds of thousands. It is despicable for this dictatorship not to permit our aid in.” But instead that was ignored, and what Al Gore did focus on “This is a chance for me to explain global warming,” as the quote I just gave suggested.
Well, the Burmese cyclone hit Burma. If you take a look at what Al Gore’s words were, he is trying to say that it is because of the warming of the water. I have in front of me, which I will submit as part of the Record, a satellite image of ocean temperatures taken by NOAA on May 5 which suggests the ocean in the area of the Burmese cyclone is one of the coldest water areas on Earth.
So what the heck is Mr. Gore talking about? What is all this mumbo jumbo? Again, he is warning about global warming because he is grasping at an attempt to try to verify in some way his predictions that have been all wrong for the last 5 years.
Dr. William Gray, for example, as I mentioned, the former chairman of the American Meteorological Association, a pre-eminent hurricane expert, has noted “there is no reliable data available to indicate increased hurricane frequency or intensity in any of the globe’s seven tropical cyclone basins.” So hurricanes and cyclones are not a product of global warming. Dr. Gray, I think, has more credentials than Mr. Gore. But most convincingly, the most convincing part of this is that no matter what Al Gore says about the warming of this water, that is not what we are hearing from other sources.
I will now submit for the Record indications that actually the water temperature is not warming and is expected to cool, especially in the northern areas of the world.
So what is really important here is that we take a look and we see that the world is not warming and that those people who have been advocating this are grasping to try to find a way out of the fact that they are telling us that we need to adopt the policies that they want for our country, yet their predictions on the weather were wrong.
What is happening is, and the articles that I will submit for the Record show, is that some of the organizations that were predicting that we would be in global warming now are telling us that, yes, there will be global warming. We are not giving it up. But it is going to be 10 to 15 years from now and not in the last 10 years, as was predicted.
In fact, as I said, we actually have this article that suggests that the sea around Europe and North America will cool slightly during the next decade, and the Pacific will be about the same. And the article suggests that it will be a “10-year time-out for global warming.” This is based on studies that were conducted by organizations that only a few years ago were predicting that global warming would be so evident to us today. Well, they have to say something I guess.
To understand all of this nonsense, you have to go back and look at the basic assumptions that are being used by global warming alarmists. They believe that excessive amounts of manmade CO2 are being deposited into the air which causes a greenhouse effect that warms the atmosphere. They call this the “carbon footprint.” That is what we are led to look for. We don’t want to look in Burma for this vicious dictatorship causing the death of hundreds of thousands of people because of the repression. They won’t even let our supplies in. We have to blame it on global warming causing a cyclone which hit Burma. No. I don’t think so. But carbon footprinting is now what we should look at.
The global warming analysts want us to judge everything by its carbon footprint. What that means is how much CO2 is being released because of that activity, because they believe it is CO2 that causes the planet to warm.
This concept, just like these other extrapolations that we get from computers, is wrong. It is dead wrong. A rise in CO2 comes after global temperature increases, not before. This has been observed in ice cores by prominent scientists, yet ignored by those screaming their warnings at us. That’s right. Ice cores indicate that there have been periods, many periods, of warming and cooling in the history of the world. But the warming that has happened preceded the increase in the level of CO2 in the world. That is why we have warming. That is why we can’t say that if we control CO2 that it is going to prevent the climate from warming.
Obviously, if the CO2 increase comes as a result of the warming, by changing that, the warming is still going to be with us. Well, that is getting things to the core. And I don’t mean a pun by that in terms of the ice core, but the fact is that this evidence is confirmed by ice cores.
So take note that the very argument upon which global warming is built has been proven to be false and that manmade global warming advocates will not address that issue. I have been in hearing after hearing. I have been involved with debates on this thing. When you tell them “no,” and you name several scientists, and I will be happy to do that for the Record, who are indicating that the CO2 increases come after the warming of the planet, well, that issue just isn’t addressed.
After all, the case is closed. We don’t need to discuss any of those type of details. To cite one example of experts’ findings on this, by the way, is Tom Scheffelin of the California Air Resources Board who stated on November 5, 2007, that “CO2 levels track temperature changes between 300 to 1,000 years after the temperature has changed. CO2 has no direct role in global warming; rather, it responds to biological activity, which responds to climate changes.”
The fact is that the global warming community is jumping through hoops and bending over backwards struggling to find one little glint of new information to cover their arrogant attempt to stampede humankind into draconian policies and to cut off the debate and dismiss the debate without addressing the issues. The government-financed propaganda campaign to convince us that manmade global warming has been and continues to be a major threat, this propaganda is a cacophony of gibberish presented as a scientific explanation.
Go back and look at what Mr. Gore’s words were about that cyclone. That same sort of putting together of pseudoscience wording in order to impress people is seen time and again. There are facts now evident, of course, that this can’t be ignored. And Mr. Gore’s mumbo jumbo notwithstanding, the predictions have been wrong. And the CO2 premise is wrong. The methodology that has been used has been wrong. The observations have been wrong. And the attempt to shut up those people who disagree has been wrong.
I remember Al Gore labeling me a Stalinist because when I chaired the subcommittee on Research and Science Education, I insisted that both sides be presented. There was a study on research and the environment, a subcommittee of the Science Committee. And I insisted when I was chairman of the committee that expert witnesses on both sides be present at hearings and that they address each other’s contentions. Well, to him, that is Stalinism. Well, I would suggest that the propaganda campaign of the manmade global warming alarmists has far more in common with Stalinism than does insisting that both sides of an argument be heard.
One has to really believe that he or she has a corner on the truth to make such a complaint as the one that he was making against me. He must feel really safe in saying that he knows the truth and that is in order to justify not having both sides of an argument presented at a hearing. Of course, Mr. Gore’s documentary, “An Inconvenient Truth” by its own title suggests that it should be taken as the truth. And I won’t go into the numerous debatable points and outright errors that are presented in the film. Something far worse has recently emerged concerning the fundamental veracity and truthfulness of Vice President Gore’s film.
In the film, there are numerous film segments of climate and environmental incidents to add credibility to the alleged scientific points that were being documented in the film. However, what we see is not necessarily what we are getting. The audience is being given questionable information and questionable views because what they are seeing is not necessarily a documentary view but, instead it is a special effects creation in an attempt to convince the viewers that they are watching an actual occurrence of something.
Specifically, let me note that the film portrays a huge cracking and breaking away of a large portion of the polar ice cap. I have not seen the film, but I am told the scene is awesome and somewhat overwhelming, leaving the audience feeling that they are witnessing a massive occurrence, and this massive occurrence, of course, Mr. Gore conveniently ties to human activity, the human activity he wants to regulate and of course the human activity that he will profit from if we have this carbon credit scheme instituted by the various governments of the world.
Unfortunately, that view of the breakaway of the ice there in the Arctic is a total fake. It is not National Geographic footage of a huge breaking away of a portion of the ice cap. It is not firsthand, grand photographic evidence of the ice breaking. Instead, what the audience is looking at is an example of special effects. It was not the ice cap that was being looked at. It was Styrofoam. That’s right. Styrofoam.
And the real sin of all of this was not only the sin of presenting Styrofoam and trying to trick people into thinking they are watching something real, the ice breaking away, but that we haven’t heard about it. I have only seen this in one or two publications. We haven’t heard about it.
If such a trick and attempt to deceive was done by a conservative, I could tell you that that conservative would be tarred and feathered in the media. In fact, if there is anything wrong, I am sure that one or two points that I have in this speech are debatable, and I am sure that those will be looked at with a microscope. And if I am wrong, even a little bit, they will try to use that to just say “don’t listen to anything he says.” But Mr. Gore can present the breaking away of Styrofoam and present it to us as if it is really happening. And he doesn’t even apologize or comment on it when it is found out. Al Gore has no comment on this deception.
Maybe it is inconvenient for him to comment because, yes, it might hurt his credibility. And after all, the world is getting warmer in these last 7 years, which is just the opposite of what he predicted. And of course, maybe his predictions were based on a Styrofoam computer model. But we will go into that later.
Well, the first time I met President Gore was during my first term in Congress back in 1989 and 1990. Al Gore then was a United States Senator. And he marched into the Science Committee room followed by a platoon of cameras and reporters. He sat in front of the Science Committee, and he demanded that President Bush, that is George W.’s father, declare an ozone emergency. And he waved in his hand a report of evidence that an ozone hole was opening up over the Northeast United States.
A few days later, the report touted by the Senator was found to have been based on faulty data, data collected by one so-called researcher flying a single-engine Piper Cub with limited technology and not much expertise. Senator Gore was demanding emergency shutdowns of factories and manufacturing plants in the Northeast. It would have had dire consequences for the American economy and for those people who worked in those plants. But they be damned, because we are out to save the planet.
Now does anyone here see any type of a pattern here, the ozone hole that wasn’t there and then we are going to have this drastic action in order to save the planet? The scare tactics, the Chicken Little-ism and all the rest of these types of things that are trying to create hysteria, this isn’t a new tactic.
Let’s look at some of the past examples of the nonsense being portrayed as science.
Cranberries, yes, cranberries, shield your children from Ocean Spray. That’s right, the cranberry industry suffered a loss of nearly $20 million back in 1957 when it was determined that perhaps cranberries, there was something wrong with the cranberries. In fact, later on it was admitted to be just a mistake.
But the cranberry industry went to hell for 2 or 3 years. But if you are not growing cranberries, what do you care about cranberry farmers? No, you care about people. Many peoples’ lives were destroyed because over a 2- or 3-year period, cranberries were basically labeled as something that they should not have been labeled, and it was a catastrophe for them, just like perhaps those people that worked in factories that would have been closed up had we taken that ozone scare seriously.
Then there was the scare over cyclamate. Cyclamate was used in everyday items like soda, jams, ice cream. It was a sweetening element, it’s very low in calories, that industry, it was a very fine product and generated an enormous profit. In the early 1970s, the FDA banned cyclamates. I remember very well.
People spent billions of dollars building this industry. It was a great industry, but it was labeled as a cancer hazard after someone, some kind of a researcher, force-fed rats the equivalent of 350 cans of soda a day. By giving these rats the equivalent of 350 soda cans a day, 8 out of 240 got sick.
Well, even that was a faulty test, and eventually the truth prevailed and cyclamates were labeled okay, they were given an okay. That was after about 10 years. Canada, by the way, never banned cyclamates, but in order to protect us and save us, and it was a terrible situation, yes, the cyclamate industry never recovered.
The damage, however, was done. This episode has had serious consequences, because when the cyclamates were banned, that led to the introduction of what, high fructose corn syrup, so, yes, and with all of the obesity and problems that come with high fructose corn syrup. That first got its hold in the food business at a time when cyclamates were thought to be the answer, but they were banned.
So we have had examples of this over and over again, another American industry that was decimated by a rotten theory that had hazardous consequences for implementing.
The next example of fear mongering, of pseudoscience, happened in 1989. February 26, 1989, that evening thousands of Americans tuned into “60 Minutes” and heard Ed Bradley say the most potent cancer-causing agent in our food supply is a substance sprayed on apples to keep them on the trees longer and make them look better. That’s the conclusion of a number of scientific experts. And who is at risk? Children who may someday develop cancer.
That one story, by the way, snowballed into a media blitz, a feeding frenzy, Meryl Streep testified before Congress, spouting off, again, pseudoscientific nonsense. Parents tossed apples out the window, schools removed applesauce from the cafeteria and, of course, replaced that with much safer nutritious substances like ice cream and pudding.
Of course, there was only one problem, the Alar didn’t cause cancer, the apples definitely didn’t and even the Alar didn’t. The study was based on bad science, and 20,000 apple growers in the United States suffered major financial harm.
Okay, so by now such alarmism has become a political tool that scares people to try to get them to do things. That’s what we are facing with global warming, excuse me, climate change.
The Three Mile Island incident is another example of this. You remember Three Mile Island, a near disaster in Pennsylvania which, basically, coupled with the movie “The China Syndrome” led to a total halt in the development of nuclear energy as a means for producing energy in the United States.
The Jane Fonda movie, “The China Syndrome,” coupled with a mishap at a nuclear power plant, that was, I might add, a mishap that no one suffered any health consequences, no one died, no one was hurt. Yet it was presented to the public as this catastrophe, and that led to a shutdown of the efforts of building any new nuclear power plants.
Ironically, of course, nuclear power is the most effective means of producing power with no carbon footprint. Again, it was a total con job on the nuclear energy industry.
What about the ozone hole over the Antarctic? We are told that it would grow and grow for decades, and it was totally out of control.
Well, Boyce Rensberger, Director of the Knight Fellowship of Massachusetts Institute of Technology says that ozone depletion is a cyclical event, expanding and contracting throughout the eons of history. Here is a scientist from MIT telling us that the current ozone depression has been simply part of a reoccurring cycle, not as a result of the use of chlorofluorocarbons, meaning your aerosol cans.
So, what we have got is a situation where at a gigantic shift of expense, of shifting away from aerosol, we have basically accomplished nothing because the ozone hole opens and closes on its own. I might add, we know now, of course, there have been many cycles of warming and cooling, and is this a natural thing? Well, if you consider the sun being natural, yes.
Instead of saying that CO2 that’s coming out of the use of fossil fuels is causing our climate to change now, as compared to all the other times it changed in the past, maybe these people should look at the sun, and maybe there are natural cycles where you have sunspots and it causes warming and cooling on the Earth.
Could that be an explanation? Well, let’s think about it. Otherwise, how do we explain the fact that on Jupiter and Mars we have cooling and warming cycles that seem to be matching some of the cycles here on Earth. Well, maybe there are some SUVs up there on Mars.
Well, the last example, one of the last examples, of course, that I have in my memory of people trying to be frightened into supporting policy with this kind of alarmism has been acid rain. The acid rain was supposed to decimate our forests, destroy our fresh water bodies and roads, our buildings and sidewalks, and, what happened? That was just an onslaught that was going on, I worked for Ronald Reagan at the time, he was just beaten without mercy for his unwillingness to take costly action aimed at thwarting acid rain. He insisted on waiting for an in-depth study to be completed.
While he waited, of course, he was vilified as if he doesn’t care about the environment, he doesn’t really care about whether or not our environment is being destroyed by acid rain which is being caused by us. Well, a 10-year study was going on, Reagan knew about it. He waited, as he well should have, and there was a study by the Nation Acid Precipitation Assessment Project and was submitted to Congress in the 1990s. It minimized the human impact on the acidity on the water and especially the rain in America’s northeast. The issue died quickly after that report, and it just went away.
After all of the intense attacks on Ronald Reagan, once that report was in, it just sort of went away. Well, one reason it went away, maybe there was another alarmist scheme to go to.
Yes, there was, one was emerging about this time, and it was on the cover of Time Magazine 30 years ago.
This was probably the most pitiful of all of these alarmist attempts. It was, three decades ago, the scientists were warning us about global cooling. We were told early that we were on the edge of another ice age.
Well, unfortunately, that one went away very quickly because the temperatures immediately didn’t do what they said it was going to do, and the temperatures actually did not go down dramatically or freeze. It did get a little bit warmer during those days. It was one of those warming cycles, it went up for a few years and it went down.
It was getting warmer, so even as those predictions of frozen gloom and doom, they just changed the words, those same people were making the predictions of frozen gloom and doom now were sort of talking about global warming gloom and doom. You guessed it, so global cooling became global warming almost overnight. Now, after global warming, climate change comes almost overnight.
So the scare tactics are nothing new. It is tied to a tried-and-true method of how to try to manipulate people to accept things they wouldn’t otherwise accept. Unfortunately, there are long-term negative consequences that will be very clear to our future generations. Of course, they are being lied to all the time.
I often asked students from my district, who are here visiting in Washington, whether they believe the air in southern California is better now or worse now than when I went to high school in southern California 40 years ago. A huge percentage, maybe 80 percent of these students, believe that the air quality of 40 years ago was dramatically better than today. Of course, that’s not just a lie, that’s a big lie.
This generation has every reason to be optimistic about the future, and they are being lied to, being told that they are poisoned, and things are getting worse and worse. In fact, man-made global warming is going to devastate the whole planet any way. No, these kids now, when I tell them that, no, when I went to high school, the air pollution in southern California was much worse than it is today, they are incredulous.
What is all this lying about? Why are all these children being lied to? Why are we all being lied to?
I remember as a college student, the first Earth Day–I am quoting someone here–“I remember as a college student at the first Earth Day being told that it was a certainty that by the year 2000, the world would be starving and out of energy,” writes Dr. John Christy, a professor of atmospheric science at University of Alabama.
Dr. Christy goes on to say “Similar pronouncements today about catastrophes due to human-induced climate change sound all too familiar and all too exaggerated to me as someone who actually produces and analyzes climate information.”
So, we are told that polar bears are dying, but they aren’t. As we have known that we have all of these other predictions, we are told that the polar ice caps are melting, but now we know that the polar ice caps are melting yes, only in the Arctic, but in the Antarctic, ice is actually growing.
Hurricane Katrina, we were told would only be the first of many horrendous hurricanes to hit the United States in the next few years but, of course, no hurricane equal or close to has been on the horizon. In fact, a hurricane that was just as strong as Katrina hit the United States 100 years earlier, long before this effective “global warming.” So when you look at facts like this, an honest debate is long overdue but yet we see an attempt to shut down an honest debate.
I will submit an advertisement, the Hill newspaper from the Environmental Defense Action Fund, and it says “What’s next? The Bond-Voinovich Cigarettes Aren’t Addictive Act?” What they are saying, it’s a cute way of saying, anybody who questions global warning, it is the equivalent of saying that cigarettes aren’t addictive. Well, that’s a great way to dismiss someone’s arguments without addressing them. It says here, “Some senators,” this is in the add, “are asking you to ignore. . . an international scientific consensus.”
Well, let’s put it this way, we hear that, there is a consensus over and over again. There is no consensus. The world is not getting warmer, and I would submit a list of 400 members of the scientific community who do not agree with a man-made global warming theory and, I might add, I quoted numerous very prestigious members of the scientific community already in this speech. So what we have is alarmism at its worst, and the consequences will be very, very severe if we let these people get away with this.
Now, what we have done is we have, again, permitted people to make their case without having to defend their case. This is never more evident than in the dealings with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which is the United Nations panel.
I will submit several statements that indicate that the IPCC was wrong in its approach, in its entire methodology in trying to determine whether or not global warming, whether there is global warming and whether or not it is caused by man-made activity.
So with this said, we need to look and say, What is the negative impact of all of this lack of truthful information? What could possibly happen? If someone says well, aren’t we all against pollution? So what if someone is making a claim that global warming exists and it is caused by humankind and in reality it is just the pollution that we are both trying to get it at. Well, that just doesn’t work.
The fact is if we accept this theory of man-made global warming, we will be focusing our activities on trying to eliminate CO2 rather than eliminate toxic substances from our air. If I am concerned about my children, my three triplets, Christian, Anika and Tristan, I am concerned about their health, that is something that I think I share with every parent. Their health is not in any way threatened by CO2. CO2 is nontoxic. It is threatened by NOX and other toxin materials that come out of engines in cars and other sources. So if we only focus on CO2, we will end up focusing on the wrong target.
What we need to do is make sure that we develop clean energy sources, not because of global warming but because of the health of our children. And also, we need to be independent of foreign sources. The fact is that foreign sources of oil, because we are not developing our own oil resources as a result of the dynamics created by the global warming juggernaut that we have been experiencing, the fact is that we have not drilled for our own oil. We have not focused on real alternatives to energy like nuclear energy. The fact is that we need to make sure right now that we do our very best not to be captured by this, what I consider to be one of the greatest hoaxes that I have seen in my lifetime, but instead focus our efforts on accomplishing something that is real and positive for the people of the world and the people of the United States of America. We should be drilling for oil so that the terrorists overseas are denied the revenue when we are forced to buy oil from countries that are allied with these terrorists.
We need to make sure that we develop better engines, and make sure that those engines are not putting pollutants into the air and forget about the CO2, go to the pollutants.
Mr. Speaker, I thank you and I will submit these articles for the Record.