A person who is actually a climate skeptic (and WUWT regular) applied for and was granted a training slot in Chicago this week. http://climaterealityproject.org/leadership-corps/ and has graduated as one of the 1500 people that attended the event.
For obvious reasons, I can’t reveal the person’s name, but I can reveal the communication I received last night.
The ‘mole’ writes:
I’m now a card-carrying, official Gore-bot.
(I took copious notes)
a) This was a super-liberal “kum-bay-ya” crowd as I predicted. I kept many of my opinions to myself. The event truly did have a “religious cult programming” feel to it, similar to an Amway meeting I attended years ago – carefully timed applause, audience call & response etc. Very bizarre.
b) Al Gore himself went through the entire slide show that we are supposed to use as his “Climate Leaders.” Quite honestly, there is nothing new here, EXCEPT that there is no trace of the “hockey stick” graph that was so central to “An Inconvenient Truth”!! Amazing, considering how central that was to their arguments!
c) Instead, Al lumps data together year-by-year or decade-by-decade to show an ever increasing rise in temps. He poo-pooed measurement inaccuracies, specifically mentioning UHI effects and saying that the scientists determined these were insignificant.
d) A couple graphs stood out – one showed the documented rise in temperature PRECEDES the rise in CO2 which he brushed aside as “typical variation.” The only hockey stick was one that projected atmospheric CO2 over time, jumping up drastically in coming years. I didn’t have time to write units down, but it was a big jump. It could be a realistic rise with China & India bringing new coal plants online, I’d have to check any citations.
e) Al’s presentation was heavy on his new concept of “dirty weather,” see: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/11/14/24-hours-of-reality-dirty-weather_n_2130344.html
To summarize, I didn’t see anything new or ground-breaking in this mess. Most slides were BS, typical “this is due to climate, not weather” type stuff we kick around on WUWT all the time. Hurricane Sandy, torrential rains in Pakistan etc.
a) We skeptics ain’t liked much with them folks. The “d” word (denier) was used liberally, and I queried several participants, some of who were very cool folks, about it. Al Gore and his speakers used “Denier,” “Denial Industry” and other terms I found objectionable. Lousy salesmen, you catch more flies with honey than vinegar.
b) Nothing new was presented, technically speaking. This thing was “An Inconvenient Truth” redux, with much of the controversial stuff (hockey stick & drowning polar bears) deleted. Al got our message, he doesn’t seem to want to engage folks like us.
c) Al gave some insights into his own choices for low-carbon technologies, with a focus upon photovoltaics & wind power. He doesn’t like BWR nukes and objects because of financial reasons, which I agree with (particularly post-Fukishima). He mentioned that Oak Ridge National Labs in TN is testing a variety of nuclear reactor designs which sound promising (thorium maybe?) but didn’t elaborate.
d) Stuff I’m interested in, like ocean acidification, were only briefly touched upon. Al didn’t discuss the diplomacy challenges of engaging China and India, although he did mention their growing carbon output.
Al is a polished speaker, and looked trim & in shape. Very impressive command of his speaking material. Decent speakers lined up, including some sustainability folks from private industry. I’m told the health/climate breakout session was terrible & am glad I took a pass on it.
UPDATE: Since many of the Gore followers are arriving here, I welcome you to answer this question that nobody would ask Mr. Gore this week:
If the position and science is so strong, why did Mr. Gore have to fake the results of his experiment in the Climate 101 video (which you may have seen and is still on the climate reality web page).
You can see the experiment recreated here: http://wattsupwiththat.com/climate-fail-files/gore-and-bill-nye-fail-at-doing-a-simple-co2-experiment/
For the few of you brave enough, thanks for taking the time to answer that question – Anthony