Andrew Bolt scores the Quote of the Millennium

This is from MTR 1377 radio today. Our regular feature, “Quote of the Week” just doesn’t work here. Neither does decade or century. No, a whole new category all by itself is reserved for this quote from the newly appointed Climate Commissioner of Australia, Tim Flannery, noted zoologist and author of the book The Weather Makers.

Here it is, brace yourself:

If we cut emissions today, global temperatures are not likely to drop for about a thousand years.

Lest you think that is an errant remark out of context, here’s the follow up from Flannery:

Just let me finish and say this. If the world as a whole cut all emissions tomorrow the average temperature of the planet is not going to drop in several hundred years, perhaps as much as a thousand years because the system is overburdened with CO2 that has to be absorbed and that only happens slowly.

Crikey! So much for the “think of the grandchildren” argument used by Dr. James Hansen.

Read the entire transcript and listen to the audio here

h/t to Lawrie Ayres and Scarlet Pumpernickel


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Chris Cox

What Flannery didn’t say was that not only would it take up to 1000 years for temperatures to start dropping, but that temperatures will continue to rise for up to 50 years even if we were to stop emitting CO2 tomorrow.
He’s certainly made Australia’s government’s job to sell a carbon dioxide tax to Australians a tougher one. Assuming of course Flannery’s words are repeated publicly and often!


Somebody answer this humble question:
What is it about the English speaking world that captures our imagination about man-made CO2 destroying the world. It isn’t happening according to script – but the play goes on in Britain, USA (less so probably because we never seem to “get it” anyway), Canada, and most acutely, Australia? Why are we so irrational.
Man-made CO2 seems to be accounting for just about nothing. No sea level rise. No increased storm activity. No unprecedented warming. No crises. No crises at all. All crises in fact, being as a result of poor political leadership.
Are we collectively mad?

spangled drongo

Ya mean if we only cut 20% it will take 5,000 years?


I am just waiting for the fox to finally eat “that” chicken little. I think he annoys me the most, but that may change tomorrow 😉

Lady Life Grows

In my country, the USA, biologists are just that stupid because science is funded by the NSF, which has declared AGW real and settled and funds AGW every chance it gets.
Who/what funds European and Aussie science?


Maybe the question is slightly misphrased. It really should be something like: What will be the effect on future temperatures if this tax is implemented? Flannery (and others) seem to think that Bolt is asking how much temperatures will fall from their current levels if Australia implements the tax.

Joshua J

“We can accurately predict the climate for the next 1000 years. If we are wrong, it’s because the effect of CAGW is worse than we imagined modeled.”
What a scam.


It should serve to show the masses just how fanatical the fanaticism has become. But probably won’t.

It is a long standing tradition in english speaking culture, going back to the Salem witch trials and beyond, where there is an inherent refusal to accept the idea that the world is capricious, random, and that nature is simply *natural* without persona. Nature, the untamed wilderness, is metaphorically a representation of the wild subconcious Id of the human psyche, what puritans saw as our Original Sin. It was the fault of man that Earth was not a Paradise, but instead was a barren wilderness that required man to labor to tame it in order to eke a living from the earth.
Any wilderness that was not tamed but was dark and bountiful with life was the den of the serpent, satan, which sought to tempt man’s baser desires to sin through pride, gluttony, sloth, lust, etc. When Earth failed to remain tamed, it was seen to be the fault of satanic influences, usually brought about by whoever seemed to be benefitting in spite of calamity. When blight, or frost, or flood, or storm destroyed crops, those who did not lose crops were seen as using witchcraft to benefit themselves at others expense.
The modern AGW movement is thus inherently influenced by these puritanical christian archetypes. Warming has to be happening because western capitalism is evil (even though it has complied with environmental regulations in the West and our environment is the cleanest it has been since the era of colonization) and the fat cats make a profit when the rest of the world is going to heck, so clearly they have to be doing evil to someone in order to earn that profit.


If you guys only knew how hard it’s been infiltrating denier agents into the top ranks of the AGW Team in order to discredit it from the inside with inane and ludicrous comments. Well done, Tim! Let’s all hear it for our Climate Commissioner!

Lee in Charlotte

If we cease injecting soft drinks with CO2 will this help sweet Gaia? What about Pop Rocks? I love that candy.
Will it harm the environment if my eleven year old daughter makes a NaHCO3/vinegar volcano for her science project assignment?
Thanks for caring.
Your good friend in Charlotte,

I don’t watch much television, and I tell people that there is enough strange stuff going on in my brain that I am fully entertained most of the time. But that pales in comparison to what must be going on in Flannery’s mind.
I spoke at the rally of 4,000 people in Canberra on Wednesday, and got a fabulous introduction from Angry Anderson.


But, I thought the planet has already started to cool? As there has been no “statistical warming” since 1995.
In fact i believe “there has been a slight cooling trend since 2002”? Quoting from Phil Jones himself?
Maybe he should have a chat with this Flannery fellow and put him in the picture as there definately seems to be a breakdown in information on this subject, in fact while he’s at it he should have a chat with our Osborne fellow too as there really seems little point in the UK’s enthusiasm for Green taxes now also.

Louis Hissink

Answering your humble question – I learnt some years back from friends in the ALP (Australian Labor Party) that this CO2 issue had nothing to do with mitigating the earth’s temperature but is all about “compelling ” us to live more sustainably, whatever that means. In this sense there is nothing irrational about it – it is simply the means by which the progressives are implementing their goal – essentially the destruction of the capitalist west, the link being that being industrious is synonymous with CO2 emissions.
You could view it as a tax on human productivity – the more effort we make, whether personally by physical exertion or by proxy when we use machines powered by hydrocarbons, the more tax we pay. It’s not taxing the air we breathe but taxing physical effort.
But it was never about the science – the progressives have simply prostituted science for their political goal, and it’s not a recent modern thing either, for the same group did during the early 19th century in England with geology.


I just set my hair on fire with the insanity!
Let’s go balls to the wall and DOUBLE emissions, just to spite the people 2000 years off! Take that, progeny!

Andy G

The thing is, that the “world temperature” (whatever that is), has now been statistically “fudged” upward just about as far as it can be without being totally blatant (well it is pretty blatant already).
They HAVE to do this tax in Australia now, before the real facts become TOTALLY obvious to even the most ‘blind” of the warmists.


David Archibald says:
March 24, 2011 at 9:51 pm
I don’t watch much television, and I tell people that there is enough strange stuff going on in my brain that I am fully entertained most of the time. But that pales in comparison to what must be going on in Flannery’s mind.
I spoke at the rally of 4,000 people in Canberra on Wednesday, and got a fabulous introduction from Angry Anderson.
4000 people now, yesterday it was only 3000. Like those fishing stories, it just keeps getting bigger every time.
Angry Anderson thought you were his long lost twin brother.
I didn’t see you on TV David , what fancy dress outfit were you wearing?


The 3rd Reich was suposed to last a thousand years as well.

Baa Humbug

A quick correction please. It’s MTR 1377
Also, this will be timely to remind people of Bolts interview of the EU Climate Commissar Jill Duggan who was asked the same question.
Don’t know the cost, don’t know what it will achieve. don’t know when it will achieve but trust us, we can change our climate by imposing taxes on you.
How stoooopid have we become? How ignorant, how gullible, how benign have we become as a society, to allow this sort of a scam to be perpetuated on us?


Is he apply, that the current warming we had, is by something happened 1000 years ago?

“The modern AGW movement is thus inherently influenced by these puritanical christian archetypes…”
I would hasten to point out, the writer of this claim probably knows LITTLE about Christianity, and even LESS about the Puritains. The term “Puritain” comes from the desire to “purify” the Anglican Church of it’s Roman Catholic influences.
I would sum this up in the comment: “Your lack of understanding of the terms you use…does not help add to any validity in your use of the language.”
To show that one does not need to resort to such distortions, but that the Enviromental movement CAN be described as a “neo-religion”, I recommend Michael Chrition’s 2004 Speech to the Commonwealth Club of San Fransisco.


Ah, but long before then we all have to front up to explain to a very angry lady:
“I think that, within this century, the concept of the strong Gaia will actually become physically manifest.”Prof. Tim Flannery on ABC Radio, 1 Jan 2011.

Eric Anderson

jonjermey at 9:47 p.m.

Crispin in Waterloo

Someone gave me one of Flannery’s books and I found it literally unreadable.
When I start to disagree with obvious errors of fact and logic in a book I start to make notes in the margins. If it gets hopelessly wrong, I write copiously in the margins, arguments in support of alternative positions. If it reaches the point where I start yelling at the book, it is time to put it down. Flannery is so broadly uninformed about the issues he purports to lecture us about the yelling comes long before half-way.
Utter, total, senseless, unscientific rubbish, page after page of sub-astrological wisdom and prognostications. I see from the quote that things have not changed one bit with passage of time and the copious gathering of lucre. You’d think by now he could afford a computer and an internet connection.
Australia, you are truly lost.
There is room for the wise among you in Canada, however. It’s getting colder; bring mittens.

Shane Lewis

Here here GregO…!!
We have gone a bit mad (humans, collectively), or as a minimum, are often silly enough to just follow the media mantra like so many “sheeple”.
Flannery, in a single interview, has unravelled a lot of Govt/media rhetoric and admitted that man made CO2 (and its reduction) has an almost negligable affect on global warming. By implication, you would also summise that man’s addition of CO2 to earth’s atmosphere, and therefore its impact on Global Warming, is also: negligable.
Alleluiah!! and from their own “pin up” boy.
Congrats to MTR 1377 and the true believers for helping to open our eyes and focus the debate on what really is damaging this planet and humanity. i.e, overpopulation, deforrestation, incorrect land use etc etc.


I think the following syllogism applies:
All extremists are nutters.
All CAGW alarmists are extremists.
Therefore, all CAGW alarmists are nutters.
The climate nutter crown for this week should go to Romm who probably deserves the perpetual crown of climate nutterdom. Nobody tries harder. Except maybe Tamino. Perhaps there should be a collector’s edition of Climate Nutter Bookends with the busts of both these clowned prats mounted thereon.
And speaking of busts, how long can it be before the first arrests and beshackling of the more egregious climate frauds? Don’t you just know they’re all fully lawyer’d up in anticipation.

But it is even better than that, as Flannery is speaking with authority, no less than that of Susan Solomon, Chief editor of AR4 WG1 2007, who with others in PNAS 2009 said the same:
That paper’s title is “Irreversible climate change due to carbon
dioxide emissions” and in the Abstract it states firmly “This paper shows that the climate change that
takes place due to increases in carbon dioxide concentration is
largely irreversible for 1,000 years after emissions stop.”
It gets worse: “Following
cessation of emissions, removal of atmospheric carbon dioxide
decreases radiative forcing, but is largely compensated by slower
loss of heat to the ocean, so that atmospheric temperatures do not
drop significantly for at least 1,000 years. Among illustrative
irreversible impacts that should be expected if atmospheric carbon
dioxide concentrations increase from current levels near 385 parts
per million by volume (ppmv) to a peak of 450–600 ppmv over the
coming century are irreversible dry-season rainfall reductions in
several regions comparable to those of the ‘‘dust bowl’’ era and
inexorable sea level rise.”
Yet in her own AR4 she frequently states herself that rising CO2 will INCREASE evaporation and thereby raise radiative forcing as well sumultaneously increasing rainfall, not reducing it. Truly, Solomon knows not of what she speaks, and that applies to the entire apparatus of the Natianal Academies of Science of the USA, and above all its President.

P.G. Sharrow

These people are so foolish that they brag about it. Their statements will mark them for what they are. [snip] pg


Andrew’s recent interviews with climate operatives who want to drive the earth, claim to see temperature variations over millenia with fractional degree precision, but are unable to say how many billions they will spend or even estimate within orders of magnitude what the result will be are perfect Saturday Night Live comedy material.
I wonder why the cold feet for the hot topic?

David L

Who wants the global temperature to drop? Everyone I know (and the news media) are constantly complaining about the cold weather. Last thing we need is a drop in temperature!!!

Richard Allcock

Umm, can someone explain to me the big deal? My interpreation of the interview transcript with Bolt suggests Flannery was answering the question of how much a 5% cut in emissions by 2020 in Australia ALONE would affect world temperatures, to which his answer is surely correct. The 5% figure is a politcally tolerable figure in Australia, but wasnt seriously going to have any effect. I dont know why anyone would be surprised at this.
Look, I’m a long-time avid reader of WUWT and no friend of the AGW folks, but seriously, this quote has been slectively used and to present it this way does us now favours…….

martin brumby

What did “Gaia” ever do for me, anyway?

David L

GregO says:
March 24, 2011 at 9:26 pm
Somebody answer this humble question:”
I’ve come to believe that there is a collective feeling of guilt for our success. We know we’re living “high on the hog” as we watch nightly news stories about thirld world countries. Now the venting of that guilt seems to be occurring by vilifying CO2 since it’s the common denominator to our economies. No other single entity is a direct result of our economic engine. And who’s venting that guilt most of all amongst us? Those that are living highest on the hog (the wealthy, movie stars, etc.).


To URKidding:
“The ABC as usual told lies about the rally, saying there were 2000 people there. I can judge crowds well based on how many fitted into my high school assembly hall (1000) and there were at least 4000.”
– Bob Vinnicombe

charles nelson

I always make a point of referring to him as Tim ‘Ghost Metropolis’ Flannery!


About a decade ago, I bought one of Flannery’s books (on Australian History, not Climate). Thankfully, a friend of mine borrowed it, and hasn’t given it back.

Neil Jones

Perhaps he should read this from Science Daily, published yesterday.
North Atlantic Oceanic Currents Play Greater Role in Absorption of Carbon Than Previously Thought”

martin brumby

Even if you are enough of an ecoloon to believe the cAGW nonsense, surely it must be absolutely clear to the meanest intelligence that we shouldn’t be spending trillions on bird choppers and other stuff that just doesn’t work.
If, despite the clear evidence that Flannery’s IQ score is smaller than his hat size, it could be shown that he is right and no “cooling” will occur for maybe a thousand years, then we’d be far better off investing in mitigation.
After all, sea defences, irrigation schemes and desalination plants can generate real jobs with tangible benefits.
I guess a project to build asylums where the poor benighted hyperthermalists could be looked after with kindness (and good air conditioning) might be a good idea, too.


Logically this means that our current warming was caused 1000 years ago and we are suffering (enjoying) it now


Richard Allcock @ 11.13
I think people are quite right to be surprised that Flannery said this. He is the CC Commissioner hired to sell the tax idea to Australians. He could not have said anything “worse” to make his job harder. The quote Anthony has given above is Flannery’s own summary in which he refers to the world cutting all emmissions ( not just the 5% for Australia). Andrew Bolt did not ask him to summarise or clarify
what he had said.

Larry Kirk

Sounds like a load of old flannery to me..

Brian of Moorabbin, AUS

Even better, Prof Tim Flannery is scheduled to be conducting the first of his “Educational Seminars” to inform the Australian public about the extent of Carbon (Dioxide)’s contribution to AGW, and how the proposed “Carbon (sic) Tax” will reduce CO2 levels globally and save us (and the ploey bears) from being frozen/burnt/droughted/hurricaned to death tonight.
I certainly hope someone in the audience asks him about whether “no descernable effect for 1000 years” is a valid reason for imposing a huge new tax on everything immediately.

Dennis Wingo

Why are we so irrational.
It is the rich feeling guilty for being rich (and yes ALL of us in the west are fantastically rich compared to 99.999% of all mankind before the year 1700 and the industrial era) and this is a form of self flagellation.


Richard Allcock – read it again. Andrew asks how much Australia alone will cut, Tim refuses to answer that one and instead offers up the suggestion that if the world cut their emissions the result won’t be seen for a thousand years.
Calculations have been made that if all Australian industry stopped tomorrow, the result would be something like 0.01 degrees. I’ve not seen anyone with carbon dioxide phobia dispute those calculations.

Steve Koch

Imagine that you really believed CO2 emissions are going to be disastrous and stay disastrous for 1000 years. You see that you are losing ground politically (there are majorities in both the House and the Senate against the EPA regulating CO2) in the USA. China and India are huge producers of CO2 and adamantly refuse to constrain themselves because they don’t want to hurt their economies.
What would you do? Wouldn’t you have a backup strategy for dealing with the excessive amounts of CO2? Wouldn’t you be urgently investigating an alternative solution to this problem (eg: figuring out how to speed up the oceans’ consumption of CO2)? Would you put all your eggs in one broken, falling apart basket (reducing consumption of coal, oil, and NG) if the survival of the planet was at stake?
Obviously not, you would have a backup plan, you would attack the problem on multiple fronts. The fact that the alarmists’ sole strategy is to destroy our economies and completely rearrange our way of life tells me that global warming alarmism is more about a lefty political power trip than science.
One good indicator of how powerful the global warming alarmists are in a country is how much the country’s movers and shakers hate their own country. It is no surprise that the countries that colonized the world (or have other historical reasons for feeling guilty) are also the main proponents of global warming alarmism.

Roger Knights

Richard Allcock says:
March 24, 2011 at 11:13 pm
Umm, can someone explain to me the big deal? My interpreation of the interview transcript with Bolt suggests Flannery was answering the question of how much a 5% cut in emissions by 2020 in Australia ALONE would affect world temperatures, to which his answer is surely correct.

But here’s the contextual quote, posted by Anthony:

“Just let me finish and say this. If the world as a whole cut all emissions tomorrow the average temperature of the planet is not going to drop in several hundred years, perhaps as much as a thousand years because the system is overburdened with CO2 that has to be absorbed and that only happens slowly.”


@Richard Allcock: “Umm, can someone explain to me the big deal? My interpreation of the interview transcript with Bolt suggests Flannery was answering the question of how much a 5% cut in emissions by 2020 in Australia ALONE would affect world temperatures, to which his answer is surely correct.”
Actually Richard you should read the article. What he actually said according to Andrew Bolt was: “Later he concedes that even if the whole world slashes its emissions we won’t know what difference it will make for maybe a thousand years.”
I’ll listen to the audio when I get chance.

John Crane

Can you name me a time and place anywhere on the planet since the beginning of “civilization” that mankind, en masse, has displayed anything other than delusional psychosis? Everything that has driven the success of humankind through the last few bottle necks (fewer than 10K at one point) has been as been due to Black Swans. Our health our comfort our population explosion are due to a handful of Unique individuals who made observations and then created applications to the REAL world for the benefit of the rest of us bumbling idiots. In proportion to the information readily available to all people and the superstition that still abounds, we are as delusional about simple explanations to reality as we ever have been.


Richard Allcock try reading the transcript before you respond next time.
Flannery was referring to the whole world, not just Australia.

Al Gored

Hmmm. Let me think. Who was the last guy with a thousand year plan? I believe there was a firm consensus in Germany at that time.