Why Climate Change Doesn't Scare Me

Guest essay by Walter Starck

Be scared, the experts tell us, be very scared. Well there is certainly cause for concern, but not about those “rising” temperatures, which refuse to confirm researchers’ computer models. A far bigger worry is the corruption that has turned ‘science’ into a synonym for shameless, cynical careerism

Despite the increasingly shrill insistence by climate alarmists that we face an imminent  catastrophe, reason and evidence continue to indicate otherwise. Both the theoretical understanding of anthropogenic global warming (a.k.a. climate change) and the empirical evidence remain highly uncertain, tainted by dubious claims and manipulations.

While the basic physics of infrared heat absorption by CO2 is well established, both theoretical understanding and real world evidence strongly indicate the effect of increased CO2 in the complex dynamics of the global climate system has been greatly exaggerated. The amount of back-radiated infrared energy from the planet’s surface is limited and is not increased by more CO2 in the air above. Although a small amount of COin the air results in significant warming, this effect is quickly saturated. At pre-industrial levels of CO2 the portion of the IR spectrum in the absorption bands of CO2 was already 99.9% absorbed within a few tens of metres of the surface. Although doubling CO2 must halve the distance over which such absorption occurs, any increased heating near the surface is continuously distributed into a much larger volume of the atmosphere by wind, convection and turbulence. How close to the surface initial warming occurs has minimal effect on the total amount of heat energy being absorbed or on the temperature of the much larger volume of atmosphere into which it is being mixed.

However, concentrating the initial heating nearer to the surface must also strengthen both convection and evaporation which, in turn, increases transport of heat away from the surface to higher in the troposphere, where the increased evaporation then results in increased condensation.  In this process the latent heat of evaporation absorbed from the surface is released high in the atmosphere, where the thinner gases permit it to radiate into space.  At the same time more cloud cover and precipitation also results, acting as a further negative feedback to cool the surface.

A shadehouse is not a greenhouse

To call the warming induced by CO2 a greenhouse effect is highly misleading.  A greenhouse affects its warming by enclosing the air inside with walls and a roof.  Without a roof only very limited warming is possible before convection wafts away heated air like a hot air balloon.  A greenhouse with no roof or walls, where the warm air is free to blow away with the wind or drift into the sky is something only an academic could imagine. (Note to climate experts: a greenhouse without a roof does not work.)

A better analogy for the effect of increased atmospheric CO2 might be that presented by an absorption refrigerator – an old-fashioned gas or kerosene fridge. In such systems a heat source is used to drive an evaporative cooling cycle, much as the warm surface temperature of the planet drives convection, augmented by the evaporation/condensation cycle, to cool the lower troposphere and transport heat to greater altitudes where reduced gas density permits it to radiate away.

The so called greenhouse effect is limited. No heat is being “trapped” by a greenhouse with no walls or roof. The real world effect of more CO2 is much more like that of a shade house equipped with evaporative cooling.

Dubious evidence of anthropogenic warming

The prime physical evidence for AGW is the global temperature record.  Declaring an emergency because some researchers claim to have detected an average warming of three-quarters of a degree over the past century (amidst a highly variable and extremely noisy record spanning over 100 degrees) borders on hysteria. For a start, the amount of warming being claimed is less than the margin of uncertainty.   A similar amount of warming commonly takes place many mornings while we eat breakfast. It also occurs with a decrease in elevation of about a hundred metres, or with a decrease in latitude of about 2° (ca. 200 km). Orders of magnitude warming occur seasonally, even daily in many places. Not only is the purported amount not alarming, we have no idea how much of it is due to CO2 and how much may be attributable to measurement error, the urban heat island effect, ‘adjustments’ to the record, natural cycles or other natural causes of variability. Even more absurd is that the only global effect of increased CO2 about which we are reasonably certain is that there has been a significant and very beneficial greening of arid regions, plus an enhancement of food production.

The mild warming trend from 1978 to 1998 which prompted the global warming hysteria followed a period of cooling which excited similar alarm about a coming ice age. This warming ceased almost two decades ago and mild cooling now appears to be taking place. In recent years the rate of sea-level rise has also declined. Hurricanes and tornadoes are at record lows. Polar sea ice is increasing. Blizzards, droughts and floods are below past extremes.  Attributing every vagary of weather to anthropogenic climate change is not reasonable, not science and definitely not honest.

Conflicting evidence ignored

Other “evidence” claimed for climate change is equally dubious. Two recent studies, for example, have received wide news coverage. The first maintains that trade winds are driving surface heat into the ocean depths, where it cannot be measured, and this explains the lack of recent warming. The second study claims to explain the “collapse” of the West Antarctic ice sheet.  Both these studies fail the fundamental scientific requirement in their refusal to address conflicting evidence.

If the missing surface heat was indeed being driven into the deep sea this would have to appear as distinct deep water warming in the record from the global network of ocean monitoring buoys. It does not. It would also have to appear as an increased rate of sea level rise, due to the thermal expansion of the oceans which would necessarily accompany any such warming. To the contrary, the rate of sea level rise has declined in recent years.

The so called “collapse” of the West Antarctic ice sheet is likewise claimed to be caused by melting due to warming seas; however, the thirty-five year record from satellite monitoring of sea ice around Antarctica presents a clear trend of increasing ice cover with the recent extent at record highs. A better explanation for any increased glacial flow might be that the increasing snowfall, also recorded, is increasing the flow of ice as the Antarctic ice cap is already at the level to induce plastic flow. The more snow and ice that falls on the ice cap, the higher will be the pressure driving glacial flow. When glaciers retreat, climate alarmists say it is due to global warming. When they advance, alarmists re-badge it as “acceleration”, and that too is claimed to be evidence of warming.

In view of the uncertain and conflicting evidence, the claim that there is a 97% scientific consensus regarding climate change says more about the corruption of science than it does about any change in the climate.

Models are not evidence

Projections from computer models of the global climate have been presented as firm “evidence” for future warming, but models are not evidence. There are about a hundred different climate models. None has been verified, no two agree and none reproduce the actual temperature record. Moreover, the range of uncertainty in the estimates used for various inputs permit “adjustments” which can result in widely varied results. For some important inputs there is even uncertainty about whether their net effect is positive or negative. In the end the models represent nothing more than an elaborate personal guess by the modellers.  Although models may provide insights into the possible dynamics of the climate system they have no credibility for use in predicting future warming. Ironically however, they do support the claimed 97% consensus in one respect.  About 97% of the models yield exaggerated warming well above the actual temperature record and the few exceptions closer to the record are obscure models which receive no credence from climate change researchers.

Real problems ignored

Meanwhile, back in the real world, major problems with chronic deficits, ballooning debt, unaffordable health care and education, debasement of basic rights, malignant over regulation, uncontrolled immigration, an ageing population, economic stagnation and growing unemployment are all being left to fester while governments tilt at climate windmills in a desperate search for popular approval. These are all hugely more certain, pressing and addressable problems than is some highly uncertain degree of possible climate change a century or more from now.

Fantasy vs. Reality

Fossil fuel reserves are limited. Most of the low cost high quality deposits are already depleted and the rate of new discoveries is decreasing. Maintaining production increasingly depends upon non-conventional sources and advanced technologies with low production rates and high costs resulting in increasing prices for end users. At the same time technological advances are making alternatives more effective and affordable.

At present we could not feed, clothe and shelter the existing population without fossil fuels, nor could we maintain the economic health necessary to develop effective alternatives.  Trying to force wide scale adoption of premature technologies is a recipe for disaster as has been every other attempt at central planning of economies.

Both theory and practice indicate that complex interactive systems (e.g. climate, ecosystems, and economies) incorporating numerous non-linear relationships cannot be managed from top down but can effectively self-organise if permitted to do so. Despite the sometimes messy self-adjustments, free markets have repeatedly proved to be the best way we have found to do this in the economic sphere. Failing to recognise this and mindlessly repeating to attempt a centrally planned approach proposed by self-anointed “experts’ is beyond simply foolish. It requires wilful ignorance compounded by unbounded self-regard.

Trying to implement the climate alarmist’s half-baked theoretical solutions to imaginary problems can at best only result in economic stagnation and delay. More likely the harm would be even greater as the recognition of failure and the necessity to change course then determining what to do next would all be impeded by political resistance, uncertainty and compromises while the damage continues to intensify.

Although the danger from climate change itself appears to have been greatly exaggerated the economic impact of ill-conceived measures to control it are already real, substantial and on-going. These include significant increases in the cost of energy and food, job losses, large scale environmental degradation from wind farms and bio-fuel production as well as the diversion of hundreds of billions of dollars from other far more real and urgent needs.

Biggest threat is corruption, not carbon

Perhaps the greatest harm of all has been the damage to the integrity and credibility of science itself.  This affects not just science but also our ability to effectively govern ourselves in the increasingly complex technological world we are creating. Gross scientific malpractice has become endemic in climate science. Misleading or even false claims, cherry-picking of data, hiding or ignoring conflicting evidence, unexplained manipulations of data, refusal to permit independent examination of methods and evidence, abuse of peer review to supress adverse findings and vicious personal denigration of dissent have all become widespread practice in climate research. Worse yet, when such conduct has been exposed, the response of alarmists has not been to condemn it, but to first try to deny it, then to attempt to justify it and finally to pretend to dismiss it as trivial and of no consequence. In the most prominent examples a post script has been to announce some prestigious sounding award to the miscreants thus appearing to erase the taint of any impropriety.

The climate change bandwagon has afforded a tantalising shortcut to generous funding and expert status for any third rate academic willing to abandon the scientific ethos and many have done so. For the unwilling, any public dissent means a level of professional ostracism and personal denigration few are willing to bear.

Research is not a license for fraud

The evidence of widespread corruption in climate and other environmental science is clear and abundant. The harm done has been great and is increasing. Relevant laws against fraud, professional misconduct, misleading parliament and other offences are being blatantly violated. The research institutions involved have also routinely made false claims in press releases widely reported in the mainstream media. It is past time to begin to demand professional honesty and apply the relevant laws to academic researchers that are applied to all other activities. Terminating both current and future government funding of those found guilty of serious violations of scientific standards could be a simple effective cure to treat the malaise now infecting environmental science.  To continue to ignore it can only assure more disastrously poor decisions in the future.

The idea that we must take drastic steps now for the benefit of our great grandchildren is also emotive nonsense.  History clearly shows that the problems faced by future generations and the means to solve them are almost certain to be very different from anything we can predict. If we leave them a healthy economy and uncorrupted science, they will be equipped far better than we to decide if climate change is indeed becoming a problem and what to do about it. If we cripple our economy and debase our best tool for understanding the world we live in we will be doing our descendants no favour and they will not be thankful for our foolishness.

Originally published at Quadrant Online 6 June 2014, republished here with permission.

http://quadrant.org.au/opinion/doomed-planet/2014/06/climate-change-doesnt-scare/

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johnmarshall

Reality is a great leveler. Certainly corruption is the key to getting to the truth. Remove the corruption and the truth will emerge.

ozspeaksup

I plan to send this link to my local paper.
especially seeing as the conmen who were turfed OUT of ther govvy paid sinecures and are now sucking gullible aussies in for donations to keep dribbling sh*t placed an item in last weeks local paper.

David Walton

Thank you Walter Starck and Anthony Watts.

Scottie

Dodgy science done by dodgy scientists using dodgy data and dodgy statistical methods.
That just about covers it.

StoptheRot

Great article! The reputation of Science has been trashed by those who have have an ideological viewpoint and are prepared to manipulate basic scientific principles to promote their ideology. I view,with a growing suspicion, those scientists who herald from the life sciences as their world seems to be almost completely corrupted. The integrity of Mathematicians ( modellers excluded), Physicists and those from the Physical Sciences appear, relatively speaking, to be far more intact. I counsel hundreds of senior school students each year and it is very clear that the cleverest students are drawn to the most latter mentioned disciplines. Their driver is inquiry and discovery and is without an agenda. Those students who pursue the life sciences, generally have a reason for doing so; saving the planet, because I love animals etc. I would argue that their scope of inquiry is already blinkered, even before they commence their degrees.

cynical1

Excellent essay as usual from Mr Starck.

David Walton

Related — ” … immediately the usual drama queens emailed that I was a know-nothing denialist.”
http://www.steynonline.com/6403/im-gonna-quash-that-mann-right-out-of-my-hair

Jim Cripwell

Unfortunately, no one who matters is paying any attention. This is merely preaching to the choir. Nothing is going to change until someone who matters has the gonads to stand up in public, and make this sort of statement. And no-one of the requisite stature in the scientific community is willing to do this at the present time.

C.M. Carmichael

If it were possible to ” remove the corruption” from climate “science” what would be left of the U.N.? Oh thats right they could return to full time Israel bashing, and atrocity overlook duties.

Tim

I look forward to a comprehensive response from those who offer an alternative viewpoint. (Government paid/subsidised mercenaries need not apply.)

nigelf

The way you remove the corruption from climate science is to remove the money…full stop.
The honest 3% will continue to study climate and we will all gain from it and the rest will move on to other, less damaging for society, sciences.

What a fantastic article, it is very rare that I read something as lengthy as this and agree with every word. I especially liked the bit about our great-grandchildren and leaving them a legacy of either dodgy science or a good economic foundation.
I would also like to ask when has science ever been about consensus. Science is absolute, just because 97% or even 100% of scientists agree on something does not make it so. After all 100% of astrologers believe in their “science”!

Why Climate Change Doesn’t Scare Me:
Because I’ve survived brutal Winters with no heat & scorching Summers with no AC, & I can run uphill faster than 3mm/yr. Also, the people claiming that I ought to panic are lazy, fat, & soft, & I honestly hope that they do “become victims of global warming”.

hunter

This is a very good essay. I would offer one edit on the title: “Why Climate Change Should Not Scare Us”

Global warming is only a problem when the poor countries become three times as rich as the usa in 2100 So the usa cannot solve the problem as 90% of the predicted warming will be caused by the now poor countries. Global warming is a future problem of the now poor countries.
Presently and for th nxt sixty years there are only benefits projected.
Therefore it’s not urgent and it’s not our problem, if there ever will be one. We musn’t have the hubris to want to rule over our graves. The future belongs to our grandchildren not to us.

cnxtim

Want to find the villeins? Follow the money….

Leonard Weinstein

The mechanism of atmospheric greenhouse effect is not as indicated by this blog. It is due to the effect of the increased IR absorption in the UPPER atmosphere, raising the average altitude of outgoing radiation to space, combined with the lapse rate of the atmosphere. The increase in CO2 would change this altitude (and thus result in heating of the surface) if no other effect were present. However, there are other effects such as feed backs from cloud variation (changing the albedo) and other effects (that result in large natural variation) that dominate the total result. The lack of increase in global surface temperature over the last 17 years, and the historical variation clearly support that natural variation totally dominates the small CO2 effect.

latecommer2014

Well done Walter

Alan Robertson

Jim Cripwell says:
June 7, 2014 at 4:08 am
“Unfortunately, no one who matters is paying any attention. This is merely preaching to the choir. Nothing is going to change until someone who matters has the gonads to stand up in public, and make this sort of statement. And no-one of the requisite stature in the scientific community is willing to do this at the present time.”
_________________________
Plenty of scientists of “requisite stature” have been raising their voices for a long time. What difference has it made? Now, one can read the commentary on just about any climate story published anywhere online and clearly see that “the people” overwhelmingly ridicule the claims of doom and gloom. What difference has it made?

Alan Robertson

Leonard Weinstein says:
June 7, 2014 at 5:56 am
“The mechanism of atmospheric greenhouse effect is not as indicated by this blog. ”
________________________
Where have you been?

MikeB

Unfortunately, no one who matters is paying any attention

Well, I hope not. Don’t people realise that the argument put forward here is weak and, in some places, wrong?
What, for example, is ‘back-radiated infrared energy from the planet’s surface’. If it is coming from the surface then it is not back-radiated in the usual sense.
“the portion of the IR spectrum in the absorption bands of CO2 was already 99.9% absorbed within a few tens of metres”. What is the source of this incorrect information? Does anyone know?
Although the effect of CO2 is one of diminishing returns it is never ‘saturated’. Adding more will always have some effect. At current concentrations this will marginal but it is wrong to suggest that there will be no effect at all. As Leonard Weinstein said, more CO2 will always raise the effective radiating height and thus produce some warming at the surface.

kadaka (KD Knoebel)

Who needs facts when sensationalism and misappropriated sentiment can serve your twisted ends?

World War II Skeletons Washed From Graves by Rising Seas
By Alex Morales 2014-06-06T23:01:00Z
Skeletons of World War II soldiers are being washed from their graves by the rising Pacific Ocean as global warming leads to inundation of islands that saw some of the fiercest fighting of the conflict.
On the day Europe commemorated the 70th anniversary of the storming of Normandy beaches in the D-Day landings, a minister from the Marshall Islands, a remote archipelago between Hawaii and the Philippines, told how the remains of 26, probably Japanese soldiers, had been recovered so far on the isle of Santo.
“There are coffins and dead people being washed away from graves; it’s that serious,” Tony de Brum, minister of foreign affairs for the Marshall Islands, said yesterday. Tides “have caused not just inundation and flooding of communities where people live but have also done severe damage in undermining regular land so that even the dead are affected.”

The tropical western Pacific is a region the UN said this week is experiencing almost four times the global average rate of sea level increase, with waters creeping up by 12 millimeters (half an inch) a year between 1993 and 2009. The global average pace is 3.2 millimeters a year.

The UN projects the global average sea level may increase 26 centimeters to 98 centimeters (10 inches to 39 inches) by the end of the century.

Rising seas have eaten away about 300 meters from the tip of the capital island of Majuro in the past 20 years, according to de Brum. (…)

Practicing their queer necromancy on the black altars of the Green Death Cult, summoning their stitched-together climate models into a perverse mockery of real life to demonstrate their worthiness to their dark masters, hoping to be showered with the vast power and wealth that ultimately is the tiniest crumbs the Lords in Shadow have brushed off their table… These vile defilers of true pure science are now decorating their bloodied vestments with the bones of the honored war dead.
Sickening.
And their words of invocation are at variance with reality:
http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/08/02/the-most-important-sea-level-graph/


So for example, the measured change in the sea level at the Majuro B (SEAFRAME) tide gauge was +5.6 mm/year 1993-2010. But after subtracting the tidal effects, it drops to 4.3 mm/year. And after removing land subsidence effects, the actual trend was estimated by the SEAFRAME folks at 3.8 mm/year.

• The early (1973-1993) and late (1993-2013) trends in Majuro were about the same.

• In short, there is no evidence for or against an acceleration in sea level rise in the three Marshall Islands records.

For real information on those impermanent transient structures known as Pacific atolls, I recommend this classic Eschenbach piece, Floating Islands.

peter

As someone has already pointed out, you are preaching to the choir. I visit WUWT daily, it is a refuge from the constant bombardment of doom and gloom I find at places like Huffington post. The only reason I visit Huff, is because I feel it is a mistake to sequester myself in one blog sphere. I need to hear opinions contrary to my own. If my beliefs are not challenged, how can I be certain I’m not just following the herd? Unfortunately, Huff is low on facts, and high on regurgitated talking points I’ve seen debunked here long ago.
Which brings me to my question. I have seen the rare conservative column and blog posted to Huffington, usually garnishing a lot of derisive comments.
Directing the Climate true believes to an article at WUWT brings an almost instant comment that WUWT is an oil-proganda machine and only a fool would follow the link, or if they did, take the information seriously.
So I have to ask, have any of the many wonderful posters investigated what is involved in posting one of these essays at Huffington. I know you won’t get any respect there, but maybe you will open the eyes of one or two people, which is likely a lot more than you will do posting only here where everyone is already in your camp.

Jim Cripwell

Alan Robertson, you write “Plenty of scientists of “requisite stature” have been raising their voices for a long time.”
Maybe so, maybe not. But it is a fact that just about ALL the learned scientific societies, led by the RS and APS completely support the dogma of CAGW. Plus just about all of academia. When Judith Curry dared to query CAGW in a minor way, in her words, she was forced to “fall on her dagger”. She claims that her career has been directly and adversely affected by her stance on CAGW. I see no signs whatsoever that scientists with the requisite public stature have presented skeptical views in public. Lord Reese, the current Astronomer Royal, and former President of the RS actually got up in public and told scientific lies about CAGW. Lennart Bengsston was effectively silenced. And so on and so forth.

“A greenhouse affects its warming by enclosing the air inside with walls….” I think your intended meaning is a greenhouse accomplishes, or brings to fruition, its warming for which the word effects, not affects, is proper.

The evidence of widespread corruption in climate and other environmental science is clear and abundant. The harm done has been great and is increasing. Relevant laws against fraud, professional misconduct, misleading parliament and other offences are being blatantly violated.

I’d say the best evidence for this is the refusal of major climate figures to engage in public debate with prominent skeptics.

M Seward

My only criticism of the article by Dr Starck is that under heading “Fantasy vs Reality” he concludes the third paragraph “It requires wilful ignorance compounded by unbounded self-regard.” This is verbose and i.m.o. should just read “It requires unfettered arrogance”. 🙂
Personally I think the ‘missing heat’ is more likely hiding in the trees and shrubs of the recent greening of the planet due to the increased CO2 concentration. Put a bunch of extra feed in front of any animal and they will gobble it up. Look at the way “climate scientists” gobble up funding. Why should plants be expected to forego enjoying what to them seems just natures bounty? At megajoules of chemical energy per kilogram of biomass ( e.g. red oak about 14.9 MJ/kG) it seems a good place to hide it and the storage mechanism does not have to be imagined out of the frustrations of some AGW believer. And, as Dr Starck touches on, then there is all that transpiration of H2O from extra plant biomass shunting LHV to the upper atmosphere at 2.23 kJ/kG.

davidgmills

Just as I detest commentary about global warming or global change on an economics blog, I equally detest economic commentary on a scientific one.

Well written. I must say, given my personality you nailed what bothers me the most about all this: “Declaring an emergency because some researchers claim to have detected an average warming of three-quarters of a degree over the past century (amidst a highly variable and extremely noisy record spanning over 100 degrees) borders on hysteria”.
I cannot, personally, stand senseless or mindless exacerbated reactions towards a problem. If, stress if, AGW was indeed an issue, the hysterical reaction we have due to laziness that results in a lack of education (c’mon, anyone can google and get a basic education in most issues!) really bugs me. Instead of looking for sensible solutions (adaptation) the reaction is mindless thus useless. It reminds me when my girls were little and saw a really minuscule spider in the yard. They would go running and screaming as if Hades was chasing them… tripping and actually hurting themselves.
I have mentored several valuable people on how to overcome it on stressing project situations but when I was young and stupid it came to physicality more often than not (no I am not proud).
So the question is still posed: Where the heck is COMMON sense? Even if the ‘science’ was correct, where are the ingenuity and common sense?
Thanks for the article

bobj62

Leonard,
Thank you for the note. Although I am disgusted by the corruption in the political/climate science world, it concerns me when this line (saturated CO2 absorption) is repeated. The physics of the effect of the absorption and retransmission of infrared by the “well-mixed, non-condensing” gases is sound and established from first principles. Concentrations of these gases increase the elevation of the TOA extinction surface for the IR spectra for these gases. This increase in altitude decreases the temperature (and the IR intensity) of these gases. This physical mechanism is source of the 4 W/m2 effect of doubling CO2. To dispute this to the warmists affirms the anti-science mantra of the CAGW crowd.
The non-uniform, condensing gas (H2O) has the largest green house effect by far. The alarmists are sold on the idea that CO2 effects cause a run-away feedback of the water vapor. Cloud cover, increased evaporation and precipitation and other negative feedbacks are dismissed. The global satellite data continues to demonstrate that the CAGW by the feedback models is wrong. Presenting and stressing this data (surface data can and is contaminated/tampered; historical data has become political) is the method to restore the science in climate study.

Fexil
Gamecock

kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:
June 7, 2014 at 6:41 am
This isle of Santo is quite mysterious. Neither Yahoo! or Google Earth can find it!

Alan Robertson

Jim Cripwell says:
June 7, 2014 at 7:09 am
________________
Your points about the fury directed at any and all scientists raising their voices against the maelstrom and the concerted efforts to silence any critics of the meme are quite true. So is your point about scientific societies and the corruption found there .Thanks for pointing out the bravery of Judith Curry and the attempts to silence her and bring her in line.
Let’s not forget Lindzen, Singer, Soon, Baliunas, Pielke, Sr., Idso, Hou, von Storch, McIntyre, McKitrick, Loehle, Morner, Zhang, Goklani, Kobashi. Jankovic, Latif, de Freitas, Kotlyakov, Dyson… the list is quite long.
if the criteria is “sufficient standing”, then how is that defined and “what difference, at this point, does it make”?
My point is, despite the best efforts of the vast array of forces in support of CAGW, the word is getting out there and the populace is catching on. Will that fact make any difference? It hasn’t so far.

Alan Robertson

Oh, and let’s not forget the efforts of Anthony Watts, Willis Eschenbach, Joe Bastardi, Bob Tisdale… again, the list is quite long. Arguing that they might not be scientists or have sufficient standing is to miss the point entirely.

Good to hear another voice speaking out.
Isn’t one weak(er) point the CO2 saturation argument? I thought that had been discussed here on WUWT a while back as a not particularly strong skeptic argument.

[snip – as you know, you are a persona non-grata here, as well as many other places, for your snotty, condecending style of thread disruption. While in fairness, I allowed you to comment on the recent thread that discussed your many biases and edits related to Wikipedia, I had no intention of allowing that to become an open offer to rise from your previous ban here, and disrupt threads that are not about you or your undue influence in Wikipedia. Now run along and write something nasty on your blog about this, as has been your typical modus operandi, and please refrain from commenting on any threads that are not about you. -Anthony]

Legend

Brilliant argument.

more soylent green!

Jim Cripwell says:
June 7, 2014 at 4:08 am
Unfortunately, no one who matters is paying any attention. This is merely preaching to the choir. Nothing is going to change until someone who matters has the gonads to stand up in public, and make this sort of statement. And no-one of the requisite stature in the scientific community is willing to do this at the present time.

Public opinion polls of Americans consistently rate global warming/climate change/climate disruption at the bottom of the list of concerns. The public ain’t buying it, for various reasons.

Cold in Wisconsin

This is just such a well written article. I especially appreciate the thoughts on leaving our children a legacy of uncorrupted science. Many comments are appraising the various branches of science, but I for one will say that I have seen corruption (or incompetence) in so many areas that it is hard to maintain confidence in the practice (not the principles) of most scienctific endeavors these days. I strongly predict that at least 50% of the “facts” that I have learned in the last 30 years will be overturned in the next 50. That could be deemed as progress if it were not for the absolute confidence that we place in science.

Jim Cripwell

Alan Robertson, you write “if the criteria is “sufficient standing”, then how is that defined and “what difference, at this point, does it make”?”
To me, just about the only people who would make a difference now are the current Presidents of the Royal Society and the American Physical Society. Or others who hold similar positions. This is where the canker in science today lies. If these gentlemen (and they are both males) would put science above politics, then things would change.

TimC

climatereflections says: “Isn’t one weak(er) point the CO2 saturation argument”?
With respect, it’s a very strong point – that (ignoring feedbacks, which are probably negative overall) surface temperatures increase logarithmically with atmospheric CO2, so every unit increase in temperature requires a doubling in CO2, then another doubling and another – and so on ad infinitum.
This is the major guarantee that there is no “tipping point” in the system – the logarithmic relationship turns even exponential CO2 increases into smooth straight line increases in temperatures. And at 400 ppm there are about 11 doublings left before the atmosphere saturates at 100% CO2 – I think the fossil fuels will have long gone by then and we will be entirely on nuclear, at last …

Curious George

Not a single equation. This article could be reprinted in the Scientific American.

Jim Cripwell

more soylent green! you write “The public ain’t buying it, for various reasons.”
Agreed. My current hope is that by making his recent statement, POTUS has made CAGW an election issue. If he has, and you are right, then November 2014 could be very interesting.

james

This is just a means to and end they don’t care about the environment just gulling the masses.

Steve C

@Scottie – Not a bad summary, except you missed the “pseudo” of the front of “science”. “Dodgy” seems a bit forgiving, too – I’d say … well, Beckett wrote a play about his Last Tape … 😉

Neil Jordan

Thank you for another enlightening article. Another candle in the darkness. Coincidentally, I was researching the impact of falling sea level on increasing the frequency of dredging and came across a 1986 technical article at:
http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/CZIC-td195-e4-p56-1986/xml/CZIC-td195-e4-p56-1986.xml
The take-away quote is on Page 64:
“Carbon Dioxide”
“Ten to twenty years ago there was a voluble school of thought which maintained that the constantly increasing concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere would cause the temperature of the earth to increase with resultant melting of the solar ice caps and general disaster (the green house effect). This was based on various complex calculations and was claimed to be confirmed by the fact that a world-wide warming trend of about 0.60C took place between 1880 and 1940. However, an equally voluble group of experts contended that the increased emission of particulates would have the reverse effect and indeed because of the high reflectivity of the particulate material, the earth far from going into a green house effect was in-fact about to move into a new ice age. These scientists pointed to the fact that between 1940 and 1975 there had been a global cooling trend of 0.30C. As very little is known about long term temperature changes on the planet, and as both groups have subsequently lapsed into silence, it is considered that this matter can be safely passed over for the foreseeable future, or until some better or more soundly based evidence is available.”

Bruce Cobb

davidgmills says:
June 7, 2014 at 7:22 am
Just as I detest commentary about global warming or global change on an economics blog, I equally detest economic commentary on a scientific one.
Start your own blog then. I’m sure people will flock to it.

A
CAGW is a tautological equivocation.
CAGW causes ALL weather conditions.
I learned here that it causes “WarmColdDroughtFlood”.
Now, I learn that CAGW is also responsible for glacial “AdvanceRetreat”
That magical trace gas sure does a lot.

Gary Pearse

Start by defunding the UN and reposition it back to its original purpose – a place to meet to prevent war. It would have to be done unilaterally and before it’s too late. It has been the wisdom of US gov throughout most of its history (alarmingly less so these days, unfortunately) that big government saps the vitality of the economic engine. Why, then, have they for so long permitted the expansion and incursion of big UN government into the lives of its citizens and, moreover paid for a disproportionate share of it?
How can the economic miracle of prosperity created by the United States be improved by diluting its policies with the input of anti-American despots, soc_ial_ists, permanent welfare states and a mocking, declining and jealous EU? The US has been a beacon of hope for generations of second and third world people oppressed and impoverished under these regimes. What possible US interests could it serve to sit down with such to discuss and negotiate away the sacred cornerstones of individual freedom to do, that is the envy of the world?
We know the elitist masters’ intentions. Are we going wait until the Security Council can veto a law made in Boise, or Washington, or the General Assembly can ratify a law on energy make-up of Texas or West Virginia, or the Court in the Hague can strike down the First Amendment of the US Constitution? The country’s academic, educational, scientific, economic, cultural, political and social institutions have been widely subverted by these alien ideologies. Citizens educated under their curricula are becoming inured to the idea of foregoing personal freedom for the ‘collective’ good. Geewilikers, do something!

Chad Wozniak

One of the best brief summaries of the issues I have ever read.
I am going to refer people in Congress with who I regularly correspond to this piece. I believe that the lie of AGW can indeed be a campaign issue in the coming elections, along with all the other lies told by Obama and his satraps. I’ve already suggested to them that stopping the climate change fraud should be one of the platform principles of the Republican Party. It appears that more members of Congress are coming on board with the skeptics – Marco Rubio, for one.
The comments on Yahoo to climate change stories are 90 percent or better on the skeptic side, and the few fanatics that still respond are getting a lot of ridicule from the skeptics. This leads me to believe that it will be an effective stand for the Republicans to take.