Royal Blatherfest

Ray G writes:

Donna Laframboise has a post up on the upcoming Royal Society-sponsored meeting with 2,500 attendees expected. the topic is climate change. Donna holds up the ridicule the list of attendees, singers, bureaucrats, song writers, PR professionals. The list is short on physicists, chemists, statisticians and, of course, she supports her conclusions with facts. The RS deserves the attention that your megaphone provides.

happy to help Ray

The Royal Society’s Blatherfest

A “major international conference” will begin on Monday in London. It’s being hosted by the Royal Society, the oldest science academy in the world and previously the most prestigious.

But over the past decade the Royal Society has abandoned its longstanding neutrality and become a political lobby group.

The depths to which this formerly esteemed body organization has now sunk may be seen on the website for this conference. A number of official blog posts appear there, including one written by the event’s co-chair, Mark Stafford-Smith. It declares:

our science tells us that the Earth has entered the ‘Anthropocene’, a geological era in which human impacts are now as important in driving how the planet operates as geological and astronomical forces have been in past eras. [backup link]

But this is nonsense. As I observed last August, a scientific body called the International Commission on Stratigraphy (ICS) is responsible for naming geological eras. It has made no such determination that a new one has begun.

This strange claim can be traced back to informal musings a decade ago by atmospheric chemist Paul Crutzen. He is not a geologist. He’s doesn’t belong to the ICS. He has no more authority to announce the beginning of a new geological era than I do.

more here:


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Malcolm Miller

It’s the era of the PR crowd and the infinite repetition of the Big Lie.


it’s the water….
…stop drinking the water
I vote for Stultusocene


They could save themselves a bunch of time if they’d let mostly physicists, statisticians, geostaticians, geologists, biologists, glaciologists, astrophysicists and other high-caliber people attend.
On the other hand, what fun would it be for many of these people trying to figure out what the above-mentioned professionals are saying; or what it means? Can’t have a proper party with plenty of those party-poopers pompously parading around.


The good folks at The Resilient Earth dismantled the silly notion of the Anthropocene:

Joachim Seifert

This Mr. Paul Crutzen is the inventor and proponent for launching thousands of sulfur
loaded ROCKETS each year into the atmosphere for achieving a sulfurization of the
atmosphere, because (1) sulfurization would be beneficial for the climate and (2) to
offset the missing sulfur component in emissions from coal fired power plants……
The festival is in good company……


Society of mutual admiration …
… a little bit like Mensa and the Bilderberg Group …

kbray in california

OT Good call on “Letters, I get letters”
Good judgement makes this place “the best”.

I nominate the Clownopocene Era. And unfortunately, we appear to be only several decades into it.

Am I crazy enough to believe that this conference will be the one were a significant number of Fellows of the Royal Society say enough is enough with this crap and simply resign? That the “cognitive dissonance” will be so strong that even they cannot fail to notice it?
It seems so out of kilter with the real state of the world that even learned scientists will start to realise that this is a religious festival on the End of the World.
Religious revival has three parts:
1. conviction of sin and fear of apocalypse which is the inevitable result of our sinful ways
2. a sincere need for repentance through abstention of sinful acts and commitment to the ultimate reality and his appointed messengers.
3. Absolution through apology and public confession, payment of restitution and affirmation of a changed life.
Do I really need to spell out the parallels?
I think the leadership of the Royal Society are in for a shock when they see the responses from the membership unless they dial down the rhetoric to near zero.
I hope they turn it up to 11. Then the fallout will be glorious.


So the Royal Society has moved from being a scientific institute to a populist science organisation, through psuedo-science lobby all the way to being on par with astrologers and sooth sayers.
Well done Sir Paul Nurse….

The conference will provide a platform for scientists to communicate the latest research on the state of the planet: sea level rise, ice sheet stability, food prices, financial stability.
I think I will quickly knock off a paper on how AGW is causing ice sheet instability and financial instability. I’m sure to get a guest speaker invite.


Note the use of “our science…” as opposed to “the science..” in the quote above.
Does this suggest the Royal Sycophants club at least now accept that their nonsense arguments are exclusively predicated on their parochial interpretation of the science?
Or to put it more bluntly: Orwellian truth inversion

Jeff L

There is a reason geological eras are based on stratigraphy – because profound changes in flora & fauna are seen in the stratigraphic record at era boundaries. The reason the ICS isnt calling for a new “anthropocene” era is that there is no evidence for it in the stratigraphic record.
This is just one more case of the corruption of science for political gain.
Science has lost all credibility with the public & rightly so as long as these hijinx continue.
When people hear something about the latest “study” of any kind, the first thought that comes to their mind is “well, what political point of view is this trying to push?” not , “I trust this because a scientist says it”. A sad commentary on our modern society. Even sadder in that legitimate non-politicized science will not be recognized by the masses & society will receive diminished benefits from these works as a result.

Mises Scholar

[SNIP: You posted this exact same comment on another thread. It is certainly off-topic for this one. We do not look kindly on thread-bombing. -REP]

I agree that this is a mere blatherfest, but look at the list of sponsors as long as your arm: Makes you want to weep.
These people are wielding great chunks of the public purse; they’re expert at it. We sceptics, even though we’re winning the scientific argument, are not in the same league as these professional moneygrubbing windbags. They’ll spin this scam out for decades, curse their black hearts.


Note the use of “our science…” as opposed to “the science..” in the quote above.
Is this a hint that the RS at least now accept that their silly announcements on CAGW are predicated on an entirely parochial* interpretation of the science?
* read: Orwellian truth-inverted reality


I’ve heard 97% of scientists agree we’ve entered the ‘Anthropocene’. /sarc

Robert of Ottawa

Latitude says @March 24, 2012 at 4:10 pm
it’s the water….
…stop drinking the water

Yeah, drinkScotch, like wot I’m doin’ … hic ;-*


Among the speakers and panelists we have
Richard Black – Panel discussion: Innovative solutions for a planet under pressure – Moderator: Richard Black, BBC
The digital age and tipping points in social networks: opportunities for planetary stewardship
Chaired by Andrew Revkin and Richard Black
Convenors: Owen Gaffney, International Geosphere-Biosphere Programme; Andrew Revkin, New York Times and Pace University; Richard Black, BBC; Amy Luers, Skoll Global Threats Fund; Martin Rice, Earth System Science Partnership
From the Arab Spring to Occupy Wall Street the digital revolution has allowed social movements to spread like wildfire. Digital technology and our increasing global interconnectivity are powerful forces for change. This session will explore the potential of digital technology and social networks for transforming society, managing global risks and turning global citizens into planetary stewards.


“We’ll get the anthropocene declared somehow, even if we have to redefine what stratigraphy is.”
Perhaps the IPCC should be the marker for the beginning of the corruptocene.


Attendees should remain calm at all times as thinking about skeptics could bring on psychogenic hyperventilation syndrome resulting in excessive exhalation of carbon dioxide. The resulting lack of CO2 in the blood will increase the alkalinity of the blood causing the blood vessels to the brain to constrict resulting in lightheadedness and difficulty in thinking clearly. :o}


Good lord. A bunch of peacocks.


more here:
Damn right there is more here.

The Planet Under Pressure Conference started today. The home page is here:
This conference is intended to promote the idea of global governance and encourage the Rio Conference this summer to move in that direction. Go to the website and check out the sponsors, the presenters, the sessions. Government entities like NASA, CSIRO, The MET Office are sponsoring a conference that is intended to undermine the sovereignty of the governments that they are part of.
Go to the site. Click on each tab.

Hey! I was calling the Age of Now the “Technozoic” twenty years ago!! Much better name than “Anthropocene” which is merely a silly little time period like the Pleistocene, not a Huge and Significant era like the Cainozoic. Cainozoic means “New Life”…while the dashing and zippy “Technozoic” means “something akin to “Android Life”. It will have a fossil record, trust me. Cross-stratified automotive pseudomorphs, showing signs of both natural and anthropogenic compaction, not that we can tell the difference. Sound familiar? Layers of strange three-bladed giant fans, with no apparent safety guards…ontogeny recapitulates phylogeny? What, oh what, could have been the evolutionary offshoot that caused them to lose their guard after fleeing the sweaty desktop? It must have been at the nacellular level. How could a mere chemist expound on such matters? Easy! He misused the Convention of Stratigraphic Nomenclature, because he could!
This only proves that I am way ahead of my time, not that anybody really cares. Now the Rawl Sauce-atty wants to get in on the glory. Members of the Me-Me generation, spouting the me-me.
Oh never mind. A momentary lapse.


Charles Manson said it best—”Is the world getting warmer, or am I crazy?”


Perhaps the Royal Society no longer has scientists as members? When musicians run the conference, and social scientists deliver the hard science papers /sarc then the society is over.

Hot under the collar

The Royal Society
Redefining Science

Benjamin D Hillicoss

Can we call it the Mannthropocene????

Joachim Seifert

This is my favorite ….I hope someone
will catalogize them and we can use them at the next Skeptics festival
for amusement …..

Alexander K

The Royal Society has had occasional lucid moments in its long history; this is very definitely not one of them. This nonsense is similar in spirit to the long-ago attempt by the RS to delay the promised payment of substantial prize monies owed to the village carpenter and self-taught clockmaker Harrison for solving the navigational problem of establishing longitude, on the grounds that ‘Harrison was not a gentleman’.

Hot under the collar

I thought that was the real speaker and panelist list!
……on second thought it isn’t is it?

cui bono

Oh good grief.
Delegate Mike Edwards declares “This session will make the case for a new, holistic thinking paradigm”.
Wow! ‘Holistic’ and ‘paradigm’ in one sentence. This guy takes pretentiousness to new heights.
‘NASA will award an [alarmist] prize each day’. I thought NASA’s job was to explore space. It hasn’t got any money for a decent Mars probe, but can help fund all this?
And despite the ludicrous list of sponsers, and the ludicrous ticket prices (£450 + £35 ‘carbon offset’ fee) I bet UK taxpayers are getting stung for some of this self-indulgent babytalk.
Meanwhile, good eco-PR: “London’s five international airports combined serve 140 overseas destinations and most of the world’s major airlines – including nearly every major intercontinental and European scheduled carrier and including many low cost airlines such as Ryanair, EasyJet and bmi, reducing the cost of hundreds of short haul routes to continental Europe”. Yep, burn up that fossil fuel guys, and then your £35 carbon offsets can go towards killing or driving out local farmers so that carbon offset corporations can plant non-indiginous trees.


It’s more like the Obscene.

Hot under the collar

OK have checked the site and seen the list!
You can’t make this stuff up.
All this so they don’t have to email each other 🙂


I have never thought that the “Anthropocene” would be the name of the next era and I do not think it started 10 years ago. I believe that this elevates the impact and achievements of man well above what they deserve. It plays to our inmate (and undeserved) sense of self importance. It once again places man at the center of the universe. (Just as the church argued wrt Galileo 500 years ago.)
My view is that the next age will be called the “Plasticocene” and that it will be shown to have started about 40 years ago. There will be a definable change in the stratigraphic record. However, it will not have anything to do with profound changes in flora & fauna. Instead, future geologists will point to the first presence of plastics embedded into the fossil record as the starting point of this new and exciting era.

Brian H

Edit note:
“Donna holds up the to ridicule the list …”

Brian H

My nomination is Mendacicene. A thick but mushy crust of crap science will be evident to geographers millions of years hence….


If you would enjoy “learning” about the anthropocene, you must watch this video from Slow TV, featuring one of Australia’s climate science experts and researcher. Prof. Will Steffen
Prof. Will Steffen is the Executive Director of the A.N.U.Climate Change Institute at the Australian National University in Canberra. He is also an advisor to Australia’s Climate Commission.
Prof. Steffen’s name also crops up in relation to the London School of Economics with this conference “Planet under Pressure” in the UK, end March 2012.
Isn’t “anthropocene” just another frightener buzzword to scare the natives, while keeping the funding gravytrain secure ?
I forgot to add – “Heaven help Australia”.

Jimmy Haigh.

I’m disappointed that Bono won’t be there. That would have been the icing on the cake.

To give full credit to Paul Crutzen is insane. The ecologist Eugene Stoermer originally coined the term Anthropocene, in the 1980’s, and a joint paper by Crutzen and Stoermer may have made it more popular in the year 2000 (Global Change Newsletter 41), but the idea was not Crutzen’s alone.
For those who are into etymology (the study of the history of words, their origins, and how their form and meaning have changed over time), you have to travel way back for the proper credit here.
“…As early as 1873, the Italian geologist Antonio Stoppani acknowledged the increasing power and impact of humanity on the Earth’s systems and referred to the ‘anthropozoic era’.
A similar term, Homogenocene (from old Greek: homo-, same geno-, kind, kainos-, new and -cene, period) was first used by Michael Samways in his editorial article in the Journal of Insect Conservation (1999) titled, “Translocating fauna to foreign lands: here comes the Homogenocene”.
Samways used the term to define our current geological epoch, in which biodiversity is diminishing and ecosystems around the globe become more similar to one another. The term was used by John L. Curnutt in 2000 in Ecology, in a short list titled “A Guide to the Homogenocene.” Curnutt was reviewing Alien species in North America and Hawaii: impacts on natural ecosystems by George Cox.
Andrew Revkin coined the term Anthrocene in his book Global Warming: Understanding the Forecast (1992), in which he wrote, “we are entering an age that might someday be referred to as, say, the Anthrocene. After all, it is a geological age of our own making.” The word evolved into the Anthropocene, which is generally regarded as being a more suitable technical term…”
On top of all that, in the 1990s the term Anthroposphere was widely used in the Chinese science literature.
So pick one: anthropozoic era, homogenocene, anthrocene, anthropocene or anthroposphere.
Whatever. Read more here about this “new” term.


PaulH says:
March 24, 2012 at 4:24 pm
The good folks at The Resilient Earth dismantled the silly notion of the Anthropocene:
You just reminded me that R Gates would parrot the word “Anthropocene” as one of his “memes of the month”. Where did he go ? I miss the guy.
He seemed to disappear around the time of Peter Gleick’s “heroic” act. Was he disgusted, or … or …. or …. has anyone ever seen R Gates and Gleick in the same room together ??
Just asking.


Call the new age what you will, but I expect this present geological transition to be characterized by an unusual abundance of coprolite.


or … or …. or …. has anyone ever seen R Gates and Gleick in the same room together ??

I like kcom’s term: the Corruptocene☺. Pigtroghocene? Rentseekercene? Alarmocene?Idiotocracene? Grantsuckocene?

Hot under the collar

newtlove, should that have been …musicians run the conference and scientists provide the entertainment? After Mike Edwards ‘holistic thinking paradigm’ declaration I perceive there’s more science in mfo’s brilliant ‘hyperventilation’ post than this whole conference. Holistic and paradigm are the sort of words a student nurse may want to use in an essay to try to score points, or a declaration that a health care organisation provides a ‘holistic’ service leaving some patients with the impression that the care is akin to being blessed by the pope!

I’ve been watching the trolls come and go for a while now. I have a theory. I think they are likely to be students at some particular schools, likely in particular majors, where they are ‘assigned’ to visit a “denier blog” and report on how some arguments are presented / responded. Write it up for some number of points toward their class.
Why? Because as a teacher I’d assign my students to go “buy a computer” (in that they were required to go “shopping” for a computer and report on the experience (and the correctness of the salesguy, or lack thereoff)). Teachers are often looking for ways to have a ‘field experience’ for students. That, and the semi-scripted standard talking points (as though they were on a handout as ‘ideas’).
There is also a tendency for the ‘handles’ to rotate more or less in unison, like the change of semester. Then there is the tendency to swoon a bit about holidays. (Some of the individuals seem to ramp up during holidays, so I suspect they may be the Teaching Assistants who have more free time then 😉
So maybe R. Gates finally graduated 😉
Or we’re coming up on Easter break…

William Astley

It appears some members of the Royal Society’s knowledge of climate change is limited to BBC newscasts. I would assume that those who are knowledgeable are intimidated and hence choose not to speak out.
“The problem for (William: “catastrophic”) global warming supporters is they actually need for past warming from CO2 to be higher than 0.7C. If the IPCC is correct that based on their high-feedback models we should expect to see 3C of warming per doubling of CO2, looking backwards this means we should already have seen about 1.5C of CO2-driven warming based on past CO2 increases. But no matter how uncertain our measurements, it’s clear we have seen nothing like this kind of temperature rise. Past warming has in fact been more consistent with low or even negative feedback assumptions.”
William: Perhaps the explanation of a lack of warming could be due to planet’s response to a change in forcing is negative (planetary clouds in the tropics increase thereby reflecting more sunlight off into space to resist the forcing change) as opposed to positive, amplify forcing changes.
This is the fourth published paper that supports the assertion that planet’s response to change in forcing is negative. This paper analyzes top of the atmosphere radiation changes using satellites as compared to changes in planetary temperature change. The conclusion of the paper is clouds in the tropics increase or decrease thereby reflecting more or less sunlight off into space to resist (negative feedback) planetary temperature change.
The IPCC models assume positive feedback which amplifies CO2 warming. Based on the analysis of Lindzen and Choi the warming due to a doubling of atmospheric CO2 will be roughly 0.8C as compared to the IPCC predicted 3C to 5C.
“On the Observational Determination of Climate Sensitivity and Its Implications
We estimate climate sensitivity from observations, using the deseasonalized fluctuations in sea surface temperatures (SSTs) and the concurrent fluctuations in the top-of-atmosphere (TOA) outgoing radiation from the ERBE (1985-1999) and CERES (2000-2008) satellite instruments. Distinct periods of warming and cooling in the SSTs were used to evaluate feedbacks. An earlier study (Lindzen and Choi, 2009) was subject to significant criticisms. The present paper is an expansion of the earlier paper where the various criticisms are taken into account. ….
….we show that simple regression methods used by several existing papers generally exaggerate positive feedbacks and even show positive feedbacks when actual feedbacks are negative. We argue that feedbacks are largely concentrated in the tropics, and the tropical feedbacks can be adjusted to account for their impact on the globe as a whole. Indeed, we show that including all CERES data (not just from the tropics) leads to results similar to what are obtained for the tropics alone – though with more noise.
… We again find that the outgoing radiation resulting from SST fluctuations exceeds the zerofeedback response thus implying negative feedback. In contrast to this, the calculated TOA outgoing radiation fluxes from 11 atmospheric models forced by the observed SST are less than the zerofeedback response, consistent with the positive feedbacks that characterize these models. The results imply that the models are exaggerating climate sensitivity.”
This is a succinct explanation of why the extreme AGW science is based on a incorrect science.
I see Realclimate has a comment showing this graph. It should be noted the lack of warming logically supports Lindzen and Choi’s finding.

Hot under the collar

Don’t be so cynical, you know the students aren’t up yet.

Aussie Luke Warm

What’s become of the Royal Society? I think I’m going to vomit.

Iggy Slanter

I just wanted to say how much of a gentleman you are to do what you did earlier. A class act through and through.