Better living through chemistry climate science?

The American Chemical Society decides to put themselves into the climate communications business.

From their press release:

Understanding climate science: A scientist’s responsibility to communicate with the public

NEW ORLEANS, April 8, 2013 — With global climate change and the prospect of another record-hot summer on the minds of millions of people, experts have gathered here today to encourage scientists to take a more active role in communicating the topic to the public, policy makers and others. The symposium, “Understanding Climate Science: A Scientist’s Responsibility,” is part of the 245th National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society (ACS), the world’s largest scientific society.

Speakers are highlighting a new resource that scientists can use in communicating the science of climate change. Launched late last year, the ACS Climate Science Toolkit, available at http://www.acs.org/climatescience, is a web-based tool to enhance understanding and communication of the science underpinning global climate change. The toolkit was developed for ACS’ more than 163,000 members and others. Abstracts related to the symposium are at the end of this release.

The project, more than a year in development, was one of the major initiatives that Bassam Z. Shakhashiri, Ph.D., 2012 ACS president, put forth for his year in office. Shakhashiri, the William T. Evjue Distinguished Chair for the Wisconsin Idea at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, described the toolkit as a unique resource, with a sharp focus on the scientific concepts that determine Earth’s climate.

“The ACS Climate Science Toolkit fills a need for education and equips scientists with the information and other resources necessary to develop a robust intellectual structure to communicate on this key topic,” said Shakhashiri. “Climate change affects everyone and everything on Earth, and ranks as one of the greatest global challenges of the early 21st century.”

Shakhashiri explained that the ACS is among the major scientific organizations with position statements acknowledging the reality of climate change and recommending action. The ACS policy statement mentions that people need a basic understanding of climate science in order to make informed personal decisions. And it describes climate change education for the public as “essential.” Not explicit in the statement, however, is the responsibility of individual ACS members to take active roles in this education process as both scientists and citizens.

“Scientist-citizens must use their expertise and credibility as scientists ― as the ACS Mission Statement expresses so eloquently ― ‘…for the benefit of Earth and its people,'” Shakhashiri added. “Recruiting individual scientists to take on this responsibility requires encouragement and exhortation. It also requires providing convenient access to reliable tools for doing so.”

The ACS Climate Science Toolkit discusses greenhouse gases, how the Earth’s heating mechanism works, how the vibrational energy from molecules changes into translational kinetic energy and much more. The toolkit also provides a package of “Climate Science Narratives” that can be adapted and personalized when scientists have the opportunity to speak about climate science to other audiences. Those may include students, schoolteachers, college and university faculty, industrial scientists and business leaders, civic and religious groups, professional science and educational organizations, and elected public officials at all levels and in all branches of government.

Work on the toolkit began in 2011, when Shakhashiri formed the ACS Presidential Working Group on Climate Science, a panel of distinguished scientists and science communicators chaired by physical chemist and science educator Jerry A. Bell, Ph.D. The panel worked on two tasks. One was to develop a toolkit that ACS members and others could use for self-education on climate science, to understand the fundamental chemical and physical processes that determine Earth’s climate. The second was an ongoing task of developing strategies for using the toolkit in communicating about climate change to other audiences.

The Dec. 3, 2012, edition of Chemical & Engineering News, ACS’ weekly newsmagazine, contains a Comment article at http://cenm.ag/climatescience in which Shakhashiri discusses the toolkit and its importance.

Members of the working group:

  • Bassam Z. Shakhashiri, Ph.D., William T. Evjue Distinguished Chair for the Wisconsin Idea, the University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • Jerry A. Bell, Ph.D., working group chair, the University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • Joseph S. Francisco, Ph.D., William E. Moore Distinguished Professor of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences and Chemistry, Purdue University
  • Peter Mahaffy, Ph.D., King’s University College in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, and co-director of the King’s Centre for Visualization in Science
  • Kathleen M. Schulz, Ph.D., president of Business Results Inc., Albuquerque, N.M., and a member of the ACS Board of Directors
  • Susan Solomon, Ph.D., Ellen Swallow Richards Professor of Atmospheric Chemistry and Climate Science at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • John Wiesenfeld, Ph.D., professor emeritus at Florida Atlantic University
  • Rudy M. Baum, consultant, former editor-in-chief of Chemical & Engineering News
  • Barbara J. Finlayson-Pitts, Ph.D., consultant, University of California-Irvine
  • Mario J. Molina, Ph.D., consultant, University of California-San Diego
  • Michael Woods, ACS staff liaison, assistant director, science communications, ACS Office of Public Affairs
  • Katie Cottingham, Ph.D., ACS staff liaison, senior science writer, science communications, ACS Office of Public Affairs
  • Darcy Gentleman, Ph.D., ACS staff liaison, ACS Science & the Congress Project, ACS Office of Public Affairs

An editorial on this topic appears in the current edition of Science, the journal of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, at http://www.sciencemag.org/content/340/6128/9.full.pdf.

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The American Chemical Society is a nonprofit organization chartered by the U.S. Congress. With more than 163,000 members, ACS is the world’s largest scientific society and a global leader in providing access to chemistry-related research through its multiple databases, peer-reviewed journals and scientific conferences. Its main offices are in Washington, D.C., and Columbus, Ohio.

To automatically receive news releases from the American Chemical Society, contact newsroom@acs.org.

Note to journalists: Please report that this research was presented at a meeting of the American Chemical Society. Follow us: Twitter | Facebook

Abstracts

ACS climate science toolkit

1. Jerry A. Bell1, Ph.D., American Chemical Society, 1155 16th St., Washington, DC, 20036, United States, 202-872-9734, j_bell@acs.org

Scientists have a responsibility to help non-scientists understand a science-based issue like global climate change, even if they are not in a field directly related to climate science. The good news is that a great deal of excellent material on climate science, most often associated with global climate change, is available from print and electronic resources. The bad news is that there is so much available that it is a daunting task to know where to begin to learn enough to be helpful to others. An ACS Presidential Climate Science Working Group has developed a concise, web-based Climate Science Toolkit designed to engage ACS members in learning the fundamentals of climate science so those who take on their responsibility to the public have an entry point to the depth of material available to learn more. In this presentation we will examine the principles that guided development of the Toolkit and how it might be used.

Baffled by climate change? New interactive tools demystify the science behind climate change

1. Peter Mahaffy1, Ph.D., The King’s University College, Chemistry Department, 9125 50th St, Edmonton, AB, T6B 2H3, Canada, 780-465-3500, peter.mahaffy@kingsu.ca

What’s different about the climate change we are experiencing now, relative to the many changes in earth’s climate in the past? Can’t the oceans absorb the extra CO2 that humans are putting into the atmosphere? Is it true that laughing gas contributes to climate change? And do we need to worry about a runaway greenhouse effect from methane clathrate hydrates? The challenges seem enormous – is there anything I can do that could possibly make a difference? In this talk, we introduce a comprehensive set of interactive, web-based tools that will help you answer these and many other questions, and make connections between fundamental concepts in chemistry and the science of climate change. Learn more about the materials at http://www.explainingclimatechange.com, created as a legacy of the International Year of Chemistry by the team at the King’s Centre for Visualization in Science (http://www.kcvs.ca) in partnership with IUPAC, UNESCO, RSC and ACS.

Air pollution and climate change: Integrating lessons from the past

1. Barbara J. Finlayson-Pitts1, Ph.D., University California Irvine, Department of Chemistry, 328 Rowland Hall, Irvine, CA, 92697-2025, United States, 949- 824-7670, bjfinlay@uci.edu

Air pollution and climate are very closely intertwined in many ways, including the science behind them. However, the connection between them is often not recognized, hindering the translation of what we have learned from one to the other. Examples of their interconnectedness and what we can learn from this will be discussed. In addition, a successful summer workshop for high school teachers designed to provide the fundamental chemistry behind air pollution and climate will be described.

Climate communication from a science perspective

1. Richard C.J. Somerville1, Ph.D., Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California, San Diego, 9500 Gilman Drive, Dept. 0224, La Jolla, CA, 92093-0224, United States, 858-534-4644, rsomerville@ucsd.edu

Scientists as a group are widely admired and can often use their prestige as well as their technical knowledge to advantage in publicizing and illuminating the findings of climate science. However, most scientists are unaware of the main obstacles to effective communication, such as the distrust that arises when the scientist and the audience do not have a shared worldview and shared cultural values. Many climate scientists also fail to realize that their jargon and specialized terminology are significant barriers to communication, and that their messages require skilled translation into understandable everyday language. The people whom one is trying to reach are rarely hungry for pure scientific information, but instead want to know how climate change will affect them, and especially what can be done about it.

Communication and climate science

1. Kathleen M. Schulz1, Ph.D., Business Results, Inc., 12704 Sandia Ridge Place NE, Albuquerque, NM, 87111, United States, 505-856-9227, kschulz@comcast.net

Understanding science is vital, communicating science equally so. Scientists have a responsibility to communicate effectively.

Understanding Climate Science Change

(Rudy Baum, abstract not yet available)

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On the plus side, I have expected to find some of the junk from the “Skeptical Science” website tossed in there. Thankfully, there is none. – Anthony

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68 thoughts on “Better living through chemistry climate science?

  1. Susan Solomon’s name on the masthead is enough to make me wonder about the initiative!

  2. “Scientist-citizens must use their expertise and credibility as scientists ― as the ACS Mission Statement expresses so eloquently ― ‘…for the benefit of Earth and its people,’” Shakhashiri added. “Recruiting individual scientists to take on this responsibility requires encouragement and exhortation. It also requires providing convenient access to reliable tools for doing so.”
    and
    The toolkit also provides a package of “Climate Science Narratives” that can be adapted and personalized when scientists have the opportunity to speak about climate science to other audiences. Those may include students, schoolteachers, college and university faculty, industrial scientists and business leaders, civic and religious groups, professional science and educational organizations, and elected public officials at all levels and in all branches of government.
    ————————————————————-
    Extraordinary. They make no bones about the fact that they want their members to become evangelists and lobbyists, like Al Gore’s Climate Ambassadors or whatever he calls them.
    Terms like “recruiting” and “exhortation” have no place in science.
    Looks like ACS has been taken over by political activists of a particularly crude and partisan stripe, just like AGU.

  3. This is actually not that surprising to me. Rudy Baum, “consultant” and former C&E News editor, had a major axe to grind on this topic in the official society mouthpiece for years. I ended up severing my connection to the society after I realized that I didn’t actually have to pay them an annual fee to smugly condescend to me.
    Frankly, there’s a lot about actual chemistry that we should be trying to teach the public and chicken little climate science is already well served.

  4. ACS leadership (mostly academics) has basically been taken over by “Progressives” and has fallen for every specious argument for cAGW. Rudy Baum was the editor of C&EN and a known Obama supporter. One of his “proofs” of climate change was the decline in water level of a man made reservoir in Arizona.
    ACS routinely surveys its membership on salary but it does not dare survey them on what they think about “climate change.”

  5. I’m trying to find the chart that explains why the current temperature can be related to the CO2 concentration. Found plenty that detail rising CO2 concentration. Wonder if that bothers them?

  6. Like the oil companies, ACS member activities have had a public relations problem and perceived environmental issues. Both have decided to sell their souls to the devil in exchange for better acceptance in enviromental circles. Gee if we embrace CAGW, we can’t be all bad. Besides, a body of the size of ACS is particularly attractive to a movement under siege – they, too, will make a deal with the devil.

  7. Is this the ACS departure from science?
    It just shows that those who still believe in catastrophic warming are still well organised but are getting a bit desperate. The ACS membership should stand up and be counted. Do these people speak for the membership or not?

  8. Why do they call it “Climate Change”, when they specifically mention “the prospect of another record-hot summer” in the very first paragraph of the piece? Shouldn’t they refer to “global warming”, or “anthropogenic global warming”, or really define their terms “catastrophic anthropogenic global warming”? In science, it is best to be precise in your terminology. “Climate Change”, means precisely nothing!
    When the ACS began these unscientific shenanigans about eight years ago, I quit the society, stopped paying dues. I hope many more do likewise.

  9. “—with a sharp focus on the scientific concepts that determine the Earth’s climate.”
    Well, I knew it wasn’t the CO2, but I thought that scientific concepts determined only the political climate—-sometimes—-although the ones doing that at the moment don’t seem to be very good science. I don’t expect much good from people that don’t think about what they are saying.
    I don’t think molecular vibration and good old PV=nRT is a SUFFICIENT explanation.

  10. Perpetrating Climate Science: A Scientist’s Culpability
    A few of the perps listed under References & Resources in the ACS Climate Science Foolkit: James Hansen, Kenneth Trenberth, RealClimate, Skeptical Science, IPCC.
    A truly pervasive hoax.

  11. “how the vibrational energy from molecules changes into translational kinetic energy”
    This one statement should help put to bed for once and for all the myth of “Backradiation heating the surface.” When CO2 absorbs a 15-micron photon the CO2 molecule vibrates. At low altitudes, before it could re-emit an IR photon several thousand of its neighboring air molecules will collide with it, and virtually every time absorb this vibration as kinetic energy. This is the real GHE, applies to water vapor the same way, and helps explain why one part in 2,500 of the atmosphere really cannot do much heating.
    Note the correct usage of the word “its.” “It’s” is a contraction of “It is,” not the possessive pronoun…

  12. I really think it’s important that we try and force these organizations to get honest about their terminology. “Climate change” is not an acceptable synonym for CAGW. No one denies that climate change is real. This carelessness in the use of terms is deliberate, it serves to muddy the waters, to reduce the hurden of proof for those who want us to take drastic, dangerous action to ward off CAGW.

  13. In the early days of the Church, it was not uncommon to seek to convert the local leadership. This would pressure those under those leaders to also convert. AGW, as a great pseudo-religion, is simply attempting the same thing. AGW cannot win in the public square in an actual debate. AGW can only win in the arena of power and faith.Corrupting organizations like ACS is one way to avoid that debate and to pressure members and those who are deceived into thinking that they can trust a particular assertion by those who claim to be scientists.

  14. It is said that in Science, lies have short legs and do not run far.
    In Politics, however, lies can run very far indeed as long as someone has an interest in propping them up.

  15. Desperate last attempts to get a seat as the AGW Fame and Gravy train departs the station on the line to oblivion.

  16. tim maguire says (April 8, 2013 at 2:37 pm): “No one denies that climate change is real.”
    ===========================================================
    I have not seen any scientific evidence of “climate change” yet. Or do you mean “global temperature”? This has nothing to do with science.
    “Climate change” notion seems to be an unscientific product of organized climatology.

  17. “Baffled by climate change?” Not really as I have seen it going on for 72 years since I was born. Following the failure of Global Warming they are switching fully to the desperate hope that people think that Climate Change is something new. Each day we look out the window and see that both the weather and its product the climate has changed just a bit, Please send them more money now!

  18. I have noted this kind of thing happening in many professional societies, and have friends who have dropped out of them for it. I can’t remember the source, but there is some quote relating to the likelihood of such organizations being coopted by those with a liberal agenda approaching unity over time. Liberals like socializing and networking. It’s what they do. It’s all they do. So, they eventually take over organizations in which a talent for schmoozing is advantageous in acquiring official positions within them.

  19. My Brother: Part time Chemistry Professor, Community college. Long time ESH/Industrial Chemist, dopped his ACS membership about 15 years ago. He realized they had gone completely “wacko enviromentalist” and that the net value was ZERO, and continuing to pay membership dues only encouraged these yo-yos.
    Recommendation: If you are an ACS member and have a “wit” of sense, drop them like a hot potato.
    Max

  20. I can tell they are having a hard time communicating to people that this dire emergency that doesn’t actually seem to be happening is so important that we must surrender all our money and power to them.
    Hey, wait, do you think maybe they just want the money and power?

  21. ****
    Alexander K says:
    April 8, 2013 at 2:03 pm
    Susan Solomon’s name on the masthead is enough to make me wonder about the initiative!
    ****
    Me too. Saved me from wasting time reading the dreck.

  22. Scientific societies are dominated by academia. Academia is dominated by a drive for funding. Perceived big dangerous problems drive big funding. Therefore scientific societies will strive to create perceived big dangerous problems. Quite logical, actually, though not very scientific.

  23. I’m sure that while they’re on their visit to New Orleans (most of them on the taxpayer’s dime), they will turn off their air conditioners, walk everywhere they go, and not eat any meat.

  24. As a chemist, I take the opportunity to communicate the science of climate change at every opportunity. I think that I can manage quite well without the use of the toolkit though.

  25. Physics Major says:
    April 8, 2013 at 2:10 pm
    I think they arrived at the party just as it’s breaking up.
    Yep, bad timing indeed. And about this communication thing…what do they think all the media and schools have been doing the last twenty years? We’ve been beat over the head constantly for years upon years and they think maybe we haven’t heard about it or thought about it?
    I know, let’s get a bigger stick to hit them over the head with, that will work!

  26. ACS cannot communicate effectively to persuade people that man-made global warming is a problem. True believers will believe, no matter what evidence and arguments are presented.
    Realists, and skeptics, will dismiss any pronouncements by ACS as merely more argument from authority.
    Nature does not recognize authority.
    What realists should be watching are the irrefutable facts of a long winter and very late spring snows and associated cold weather. As an example, Nebraska (USA) farmers would normally be planting crops by April 8. This year, though, the farmers are enduring yet another snow storm. The storm is expected to last two or three days and delay planting by two or three weeks.
    So, as a former member of ACS, I challenge the ACS: bray as loud and long as you like about the imminent perils of man-made climate change. See how much difference that makes to thousands of farmers who cannot plant their crops until the snow melts and the soil warms adequately.
    The sunspots are few, the solar cycle is at its peak, the oceans are cooling, and northern hemisphere Spring is later than usual. No amount of bleating by ACS can get around those facts. The cooling has begun.

  27. johanna says:
    April 8, 2013 at 2:05 pm
    Yes, Johanna, CAGW evangelists. Can science sink lower than misguided evangelism? Look below.
    “The toolkit also provides a package of “Climate Science Narratives” that can be adapted and personalized when scientists have the opportunity to speak about climate science to other audiences.”
    Propaganda pieces that you can integrate into your own life and then your own community. Not a word about the role of scientist as skeptic or critic. Yes, scientists can fall lower than misguided evangelism. The honest thing would be to admit that they are promoting a religion.

  28. “kim” said this over at Judith Curry’s. It should be a mantra.

    All climatology is divided into two classes, those trying to understand it and those trying to explain it. Those trying to explain it are at a lethal disadvantage, because they don’t understand it.

  29. I am awaiting the scientific societies I am a member of to play this game… just once, and they’ll kiss my membership fee good bye.

  30. They got the majority of the universities and school systems, the professional societies, the MSM and now the federal government. Once they get the energy sector turn out the lights the party is over!

  31. I dropped my membership years ago when they went political. They have nothing to do with science and are an insult to chemistry and science.

  32. Who cares? To deploy one of the standard arguments used by followers of “the Cause”, these people are not “climate scientists”, so why bother listening to them?

  33. Here are the most fundamental things that scientists must ‘educate’ themselves about:
    1. How do we measure temperature, have we measured it consistently and accurately for long enough to draw scientific conclusions which will stand the test of time?
    2. Do we understand the oscillations of ocean temperature on a global scale and have we been studying it long enough to draw scientific conclusions which will stand the test of time?
    3. Do we understand how the energy of the sun enters the energy system of the earth and its atmosphere and how such entry and exit affects our climate?
    4. Do we understand yet what ‘natural variability of climate’ means in different geographical locations?
    5. Do scientists dispassionately report the truth or communicate with one or both eyes on how to maintain or increase their funding packages?
    6. Is the funding for climate science research dispassionate or loaded with political calculations, chicaneries and prejudice?
    7. Do appropriate checks and balances exist in the climate organisations which purport to represent humanity?
    8. How easy is it for scientists of any discipline to express their considered views truthfully and dispassionately without placing threat upon their own research funding streams?
    9. If the answer to 8) is ‘almost impossible’, why do the authors of this paper think that any scientist would want to answer their call?
    10. When scientists’ careers are grossly affected by anything other than scientific rigour and analysis, why does anyone expect them to behave like scientists when speaking about highly charged political matters??
    Spouting IPCC mantras is not ‘educating themselves’, any more than squealing ‘ice age, ice age’ for no good reason is.
    Educating yourself is about assuming, until proven otherwise, that everything anyone says, no matter their reputation, power or prior track record, is inaccurate bullshit.
    It is about saying ‘if I believe in John Christy’s research, it’s because I can’t find any flaws in it. If I agree with his political submissions, it is because, after sifting the competing claims, I find his approach to be broadly in the interests of my country.’
    Or the like, naming whoever you choose to name for whatever reason you choose to name them.

  34. Well, Theo, they are starting to sound increasingly like those irritating party-plan people. This is good news, overall. Those of us who have been exposed to party-plan pushers in our immediate circle know just how off-putting that is.

  35. ” With global climate change and the prospect of another record-hot summer on the minds of millions of people…” I stopped reading right there… sorry.
    That isn’t what is on my mind… what is on my mind is the fact that it has been a long, cold, snowy winter in the Northern Hemisphere, and for many places, Spring still seems a long way off… it is April 9th, and there are Winter Storm Warnings across a big chunk of the US today…
    The trend toward a colder world is what is on my mind!

  36. Michael Moon says April 8, 2013 at 2:35 pm
    “how the vibrational energy from molecules changes into translational kinetic energy”
    This one statement should help put to bed for once and for all the myth of “Backradiation heating the surface.” When CO2 absorbs a 15-micron photon the CO2 molecule vibrates. At low altitudes, before it could re-emit an IR photon several thousand of its neighboring air molecules will collide with it, …

    Sorry, Moon; inadequate understanding on your part the way EM energy behaves. Do you think the molecule just ‘holds it in’ (the energy) and releases it at some random time later? That’s NOT the way it works, the re-rad is a CONTINUOUS process, the amount of time passing before a collision occurs with anther molecule being the RANDOM variable …
    .

  37. “With global climate change and the prospect of another record-hot summer on the minds of millions of people”
    I’m in Britain and what’s been on my mind for over a month now is “one will the Winter end!”. As far as climate is concerned I find myself thinking “The sun is high in the sky now its April. Why is it so damn cold??? Is the sun going out?”

  38. “the prospect of another record-hot summer”
    Right now, the UK will take any kind of summer it can get. Can we sue for ’emotional distress’ if the forecasts are wrong again?

  39. What crystal ball did these people use to divine there would be “another record-hot summer”? Oh yeah, even if it is a record-low summer, it will still be the fault of “Climate Change Caused By Man”. Silly me. If needed, sarc off.

  40. When I saw the headline over the article, I imagined a very conservative, scientific, logical statement to their members along the lines of, “Many people in the climate arena are saying outrageous and scientifically unsupportable things about climate change. Even some scientists are making silly arguments that grasp at straws, merely to forestall the idea of falsification of their prior work. Let’s embrace falsification and replication again. We urge our members to admit failure when we’re wrong, to admit we don’t understand when we don’t understand, to make circumspect rather than sensationalistic statements to the press and to the public, and to never fear to discuss how little we really know about this vastly complex thing we call climate.”
    But no, it’s to be alarmism, all the way down.

  41. Organizations who purport to be advancing “science” when they are in fact advancing UNscientific political dogma are guilty of defrauding their membership. They are misusing the dues paid to them to corrupt, not advance, science. Isn’t there some way to prosecute the people running these organizatkions for fraud?

  42. Margaret Thatcher had a degree in chemistry – Master’s, from Oxford, received in 1947. In 1988,, she, too, had a Jones for AGW, a position she later recanted in her autobiography, Statecraft; Strategies for a Changing World, 2002, which she dedicated to Ronald Reagan.:

    The doomsters’ favourite subject today is climate change. This has a number of attractions for them. First, the science is extremely obscure so they cannot easily be proved wrong. Second, we all have ideas about the weather: traditionally, the English on first acquaintance talk of little else. Third, since clearly no plan to alter climate could be considered on anything but a global scale, it provides a marvellous excuse for worldwide, supra-national socialism. All this suggests a degree of calculation. Yet perhaps that is to miss half the point. Rather, as it was said of Hamlet that there was method in his madness, so one feels that in the case of some of the gloomier alarmists there is a large amount of madness in their method.

    IMO, more needs to be written about this otherwise “robust” intellect (she later earned a law degree) to explain her early infatuation with a cause that she later dismissed so roundly. One story is that she chose to stir up a teapot tempest to gain political advantage over the coal unions.
    Perhaps someone from the American Chemical Society can point out how Ms. Thatcher could go so far astray from her robust chemistry pedigree.
    Many of today’s papers have interesting articles struggling with the gnarly, formidable legacy of Margaret Thatcher: Among these are the NY Times and the Huffington Post. And in the Canada Free Press, Benny Peiser explores Thatcher’s treatment of the global warming chimera. (Warning.. pop-ups galore)
    http://canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/54362
    Peiser points out that Thatcher addressed the “Royal Society” on the topic of global warming in August of 1988, a few months after James Hansen’s now-notorious summertime speech to congress about man’s threat to the planet.
    I don’t know if Hansen ever gave Thatcher her due. If would be both curious and ironic if Hansen never gave credit to the world leader who first fiddled his bs into a manure ball and got it rolling in a direction which would serve both her own political interests, and the destruction of much of the private wealth she allegedly supported. Also ironic that she “outlasted” the career of its maker, who last week stepped down from his prominent position at GISS.
    What I take from all this, including the chemist’s ill-chosen comments above, is that education is what you make of it. From Thatcher’s legacy we can all learn that the efficacy of science depends very much on the personal biases of the person using it, and that Big Policy is forever going to be fraught with unintended consequences, no matter the aims.

  43. John Pickens says:
    April 8, 2013 at 2:21 pm
    …..When the ACS began these unscientific shenanigans about eight years ago, I quit the society, stopped paying dues. I hope many more do likewise.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    I did also. It does not mean I will not call them up again and let them know Political Activism is the reason I left and I am doing my darnest to educate the public about how scientists LIE and fake data.
    SCIENCE DAILY: US Scientists Significantly More Likely to Publish Fake Research, Study Finds
    FDA says CRO Cetero faked trial data, drug companies may need to redo tests
    How Many Scientists Fabricate and Falsify Research? A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Survey Data
    San Francisco Chronicle: S.F. scientist resigns after faking data “A scientist at San Francisco’s Gladstone Institutes has resigned after admitting to making up data on grant applications submitted to the National Institutes of Health….”
    FOX NEWS: One in Seven Scientists Say Colleagues Fake Data

    1/09/2013 FORBES: A Barrage Of Legal Threats Shuts Down Whistleblower Site…
    Those of us concerned about the decaying credibility of Big Science were dismayed to learn that the whistleblower site Science Fraud has been shut down due to a barrage of legal threats against its operator. With billions of dollars in federal science funding hinging on the integrity of academic researchers, and billions more in health care dollars riding on the truthfulness of pharmaceutical research claims, the industry needs more websites like this, not fewer.

    Seems ACS should be as worried about ‘the decaying credibility of Big Science’ as Forbes is instead of pursuing the course they are currently on.

  44. ACS, like AGU, suffers terribly because its headquarters are located in Washington, DC. AGU has essentially become a lobbying organization rather than a scientific organization. A year or so ago, AGU appointed the political hack Chris Mooney (an English major) to its Board of Directors. Mooney is really a joke, and to appoint such a person to the board of a scientific organization is enough for me to conclude that AGU is no longer a scientific organization. It seems that ACS is following its lead.

  45. Sorry UnderscoreJim, it happens just the way I said. In the interval between absorption and re-emittance, the CO2 molecule collides with thousands of neighboring air molecules. Instantaneous re-emittance would be a neat trick but is physically impossible. Back to school for you…

  46. Under “Greenhouse Gases”, one sentence reveals its agenda:
    “CO2 is an important greenhouse gas, and along with water vapor, keeps the Earth warm enough to support life as we know it.”
    You’d think CO2 was SO important, and water vapor a distant relative, instead of the primary greenhouse gas by a huge margin.

  47. Bill Parsons:
    At April 9, 2013 at 12:56 pm you correctly report the probably most important single fact concerning the creation of the global warming scare; viz.

    Margaret Thatcher had a degree in chemistry – Master’s, from Oxford, received in 1947.

    But you state a common misunderstanding when you write

    One story is that she chose to stir up a teapot tempest to gain political advantage over the coal unions.

    Actually, she had a much more personal reason than that for starting the scare and for promoting it as an international issue. However, her political party was willing to go along with her global warming promotion because they did want to destroy the coal unions and the scare would help that.
    In 1980, before the global warming scare existed, I conducted a study which predicted the scare would occur. An account consisting mostly of extracts from the report of that study can be read at
    http://tallbloke.wordpress.com/2012/09/12/richard-courtney-the-history-of-the-global-warming-scare/
    I hope you find the link of some interest.
    Richard

  48. Bart: The quote you may be trying to recall is John O’Sullivan’s first law, which states: “All organizations that are not explicitly conservative will, over time, become left-wing”. John O’Sullivan was an adviser to the (now) late, lamented Margaret Thatcher.

  49. Richard,
    Quite a story.
    Googling “Margaret Thatcher, coal miners strike” it’s easy to believe you’re back in the 80’s again – the grainy, bleak images of rock-throwing crowds, and the same clipped, Yorkshire accents, peoples’ faces older now, but their emotions barely reined in…
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-22068640
    As you observe in the follow-up to your report to the miners, there’s much that she did right. I have been reading much praise for the good she did, but it is good to know the whole truth. I’m glad there are some people willing to bear witness to her less-well-known motives.
    Thanks for the link.
    Bill

  50. Many chemists are skeptics of CAGW. I hope there is push-back by the ACS membership over this. I was disgusted when I first read about this in the last year. Shakhashiri has done great stuff for many years devising really cool chemistry demos as teaching aids. Sorry to see him falling for this. I agree with a previous commenter that they may have jumped on a capsizing ship.

  51. “Scientist-citizens must use their expertise and credibility as scientists ― as the ACS Mission Statement expresses so eloquently ― ‘…for the benefit of Earth and its people,’” Shakhashiri added. “Recruiting individual scientists to take on this responsibility requires encouragement and exhortation. It also requires providing convenient access to reliable tools for doing so.”
    Is it just me, or does this sound like something that would have come out of the old Soviet Union?

  52. I just returned from the meeting. They had two talking heads on screens telling us about this climate initiative.
    ACS has been making some moves that have been mystifying, and whoever is running the show in DC is really alienating the rank and file in the country. They jacked up all their journal access fees– so much so that small schools can no longer afford the prices. (Right now the access fees are about 1/3rd our library budget, if we keep them!) My member fees are now about 60% higher than they were in 2004. I just dropped over $300 for my admission rates to get into a conference, and my member badge didn’t even work. I didn’t get any materials on print– everything was online to be more convenient. That is, if the hotel they selected had working internet.
    ACS does some good stuff, but they’re really going out of their way to gouge the members. I get less and pay more. Like they’re all Democrats… wait.. I think I’m onto something…

  53. And another historically fine organization goes down the tubes….
    Clue: “Dear Warmers, if you would like to communicate more effectively, try the truth.”

  54. docattheautopsy:
    In your post at April 10, 2013 at 7:29 pm you write

    ACS has been making some moves that have been mystifying, and whoever is running the show in DC is really alienating the rank and file in the country.

    I think this paper by Richard Lindzen explains the matter.
    http://www.lavoisier.com.au/articles/climate-policy/science-and-policy/LindzenClimatescience2008.pdf
    It is a shocking read and names names. It does not mention the ACS but your description strongly suggests the ACS is another ‘fallen domino’.
    Richard

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