Guest essay by Lawrence Hamlin
The February 23, 2017 Petition sent to President Trump signed by Dr. Richard Lindzen and more than 300 eminent scientists, engineers and other qualified and knowledgeable experts requesting that the U.S. withdraw from the UNFCCC reflects yet another significant effort by hundreds of scientists and other experts to expose to our Government leadership and public the deeply flawed scientific foundation underlying the politics of global government driven climate alarmism.
The UNFCCC was adopted in May 1992 in New York and entered force in March 1994 with 189 UN member states having ratifying the agreement by December 2008.
Article 2 of the agreement states:
“The ultimate objective of this Convention and any related legal instruments that the Conference of the Parties may adopt is to achieve, in accordance with the relevant provisions of the Convention, stabilization of greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that would prevent dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system. Such a level should be achieved within a time frame sufficient to allow ecosystems to adopt naturally to climate change, to ensure that food production is not threatened and to enable economic development to proceed in a sustainable manner.”
The language of Article 2 clearly demonstrates that the UNFCCC was built upon a monumentally and scientifically unsupported presumption that greenhouse gas emissions would create “dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system.” The basic concepts and principles of natural climate change variation and their role in driving climate change are unmentioned and unaddressed by the UNFCCC.
Dr. Lindzen is not new in addressing and challenging the flawed scientific foundations underlying the UNFCCC process.
A July 25, 2012 Watts Up With That essay (https://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/07/25/lindzen-at-sandia-national-labs-climate-models-are-flawed/) discussed Dr. Lindzen’s comments addressed at a Sandia National Labs conference concerning the inadequacy of climate models which evolved from and are the primary tool for trying to address climate issues driven by UNFCCC.
The WUWT article noted Dr. Lindzen’s comments at the Sandia Lab conference regarding the extraordinary inadequacy and failure of of climate models to address the full scope of complexities that drive global climate by observing:
Additionally Dr. Lindzen addressed in the WUWT article the failure of climate models to provide outcomes which match real world observations by noting:
Dr. Lindzen’s long held and articulated conclusions regarding the fundamental flaws and failures of climate models have now been joined by the conclusions of Dr. Judith Curry who most recently expressed her findings in a new study also addressed in a recent WUWT article.
The February 25 Petition to President Trump requesting U.S. withdrawal from the UNFCCC states:
We urge the United States government, and others, to withdraw from the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). We support reasonable and cost-effective environmental protection. But carbon dioxide, the target of the UNFCCC is not a pollutant but a major benefit to agriculture and other life on Earth. Observations since the UNFCCC was written 25 years ago show that warming from increased atmospheric CO2 will be benign — much less than initial model predictions.
In the letter supporting his withdrawal request Dr. Lindzen notes:
“We petition the American and other governments to change course on an outdated international agreement that targets minor greenhouse gases, primarily Carbon Dioxide, CO2 for harsh regulation. Since 2009, the US and other governments have undertaken actions with respect to global climate that are not scientifically justified and that already have, and will continue to cause serious social and economic harm—with no environmental benefits. While we support effective, affordable, reasonable and direct controls on conventional environmental pollutants, carbon dioxide is not a pollutant. To the contrary, there is clear evidence that increased atmospheric carbon dioxide is environmentally helpful to food crops and other plants that nourish all life. It is plant food, not poison.”
The inadequacy and failure of climate models to provide real world simulations of global climate has in fact been fully acknowledged by the UN IPCC for decades.
The UN IPCC has been issuing climate alarmism proclamations for over two decades starting with the IPCC First Assessment Report issued in 1990.
The latest UN climate alarmism report was the IPCC Fifth Assessment Report issued in 2013 which was presented in 4 volumes comprising over 6,000 pages of material and more than 5 million words.
The primary driver of the UN IPCC AR5 reports assessments and findings is derived through the use of the latest developed version of global climate model simulations which have been significantly updated from climate model simulations used in prior UN IPCC reports through the decades.
The overwhelming challenges presented in trying to develop viable computer global climate model simulations were addressed in the UN IPCC Third Assessment issued in 2001.
Specifically in Section 188.8.131.52 (Balancing the need for finer scales and the need for ensembles) of the AR3 report the bottom line concerning the unresolvable shortcomings of global climate model simulations was articulated and clearly presented as:
“In sum, a strategy must recognize what is possible. In climate research and modeling, we should recognize that we are dealing with a coupled non-linear chaotic system, and therefore that the long term prediction of future climate states is not possible. The most we can expect to achieve is the prediction of the probability distribution of the system’s future possible states by generation of ensembles of modal solutions.”
Despite the latest global climate model updates reflected in the UN IPCC AR5 report the limitations clearly articulated in the UN IPCC AR3 report that “the long term prediction of future climate states is not possible” applies to the AR5 report assessments and findings.
This significant limitation in AR5 global climate model outputs is highlighted in UN IPCC AR5 Technical Summary in Box TS.6 where the climate model scenarios are specifically qualified as follows:
“The scenarios should be considered plausible and illustrative, and do not have probabilities attached to them. (12.3.1; Box 1.1)”
These 16 words out of more than 5 million words in the entire 4 volume report present an absolutely critical story about the huge and unresolvable uncertainties that underlie the AR5 report assessments and findings which are hidden from the public and unaddressed by climate alarmists, biased media and politicians.
The UN Paris 2015 agreement which attempts to create global regulatory mandates and commitments for nations to reduce future CO2 emissions is largely built upon the assessments and findings of the UN IPCC AR5 report. The commitments made thus far from that agreement will costs trillions of dollars to implement and produce little in actual global temperature reductions (http://www.lomborg.com/press-release-research-reveals-negligible-impact-of-paris-climate-promises).
It is absurd for global nations to commit trillions of dollars on government regulated climate actions based on uncertain climate model projections which are the products of nothing but conjecture and speculation.
The fact that those demanding such massive expenditures are so dishonest in hiding the extraordinary shortcomings of global climate model simulations demonstrates that a massive global government con game is being perpetrated by climate alarmists upon the public.
These climate models may serve useful purposes in academic and scientific studies but they are completely unsuited for purposes of regulatory driven commitments that require the expenditures of trillions of dollars of global capital which can be utilized for much greater benefit in dealing with known massive global problems including poverty, education, and health care.
The leadership and courage shown by Dr. Lindzen and Dr. Curry in their continuing efforts to bring into the light the unquestionable absurdity of basing trillion dollar climate action policy decisions on inadequate and failed climate models deserves full and serious consideration by the Trump Administration who hopefully will withdraw the U.S. from the massively obtrusive and costly UNFCCC process of climate conjecture and speculation.