Campaigning on climate science consensus may backfire, warn scholars

We don’t have a “Boy Who Cried Wolf” catergory~ctm
Public Release: 23-Jul-2017
Taylor & Francis Group
Climate change campaigns that focus on correcting public beliefs about scientific consensus are likely to backfire and undermine policy efforts, according to an expert commentary published today in Environmental Communication.
The six authors of the commentary argue campaigns which emphasize variations on messages such as, “97% of climate scientists have concluded that human-caused climate change is happening,” hold several serious drawbacks.


Firstly, the difficulties involved in statistically quantifying consensus and what is included in the climate science literature have generated intense disagreement. The messaging strategy has also promoted confusion over whether consensus extends to various impacts such as extreme weather events. Rather than ending conflict over the reality of human-caused climate change, these efforts have fueled further debate.

Secondly, the studies evaluating the impact of consensus messaging on public attitudes have been published by a relatively small group of affiliated researchers and challenged by other social scientists, resulting in an uncertain evidence-base around which to invest funding on behalf of expensive communication campaigns.

Thirdly, past scholarship suggests that acceptance of scientific consensus is not needed for the public to support solutions to environmental problems. For example, the Montreal Protocol for the protection of the ozone layer was signed in the face of the shocking discovery of the ozone hole. However, a decade earlier the US public had already started to shift from using spray cans containing ozone destroying chemicals, at a time when no scientific consensus on ozone layer protection existed.

The final point discussed highlights how narrowly focusing on scientific consensus displaces debate over the wider issues posed by climate change, which involve many different, and often conflicting, policy options.

Co-author, Reiner Grundmann, from the School of Sociology and Social Policy at University of Nottingham in the UK, commented: “The ‘97% consensus’ has become a popular slogan for climate campaigners, but the strategy is self-defeating. There is a danger of overreach in that numbers like the 97% consensus are implicitly extended to all areas of climate science, and used to close down debate over complex topics like extreme weather events. This approach also makes the implausible assumption that publics will follow the correct policy path once given the relevant scientific information, and that acceptance of scientific consensus is needed to support specific solutions.”


Disclaimer: AAAS and EurekAlert! are not responsible for the accuracy of news releases posted to EurekAlert! by contributing institutions or for the use of any information through the EurekAlert system.

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July 25, 2017 10:07 am

If you need to use the 97% meme, it indicates inability to provide sufficient data to solidify your argument.

Alan Robertson
Reply to  tomwys1
July 25, 2017 10:14 am

That’s right.
Many people with some scientific background, were first tipped off to the dishonesty of the climate fearosphere, by the 97% meme.

Ben of Houston
Reply to  Alan Robertson
July 25, 2017 1:34 pm

The idea was to put climate change on the same level as gravity, and it works with laymen, until they encounter any sort of reasonable counterpoint.
Then, they realize just how thin the argument is. I find simply explaining what the 97% agree to is more than enough to give anyone pause. They then have to ask “well, if it’s just that temperatures have risen and that humans affect the climate, why is it being presented as unanimous consensus on everything?” They then trust the consensus much less because they had been blatantly lied to.
It’s the standard cry-wolf story. By putting so much weight into an easily disproved “97%” fact, the alarmists have created the foundation for even a weak counterpoint to frame them as liars.

Reply to  tomwys1
July 25, 2017 10:45 am

Especially since I’m among the 97% that believe the climate is changing, man is putting CO2 into the atmosphere, CO2 is a GHG and GHG’s1 make the surface warmer than it would be otherwise.
But this certainly doesn’t mean that I accept the hyper-inflated sensitivity and exaggerated effects claimed by the IPCC and its self serving consensus which are based, not on science, but on the premise that the effect must be large enough to justify the existence of the IPCC.

DD More
Reply to  co2isnotevil
July 25, 2017 11:02 am

CO-evil – Review the questions used and you will not have to accept anything.
As Legates et al., 2013 pointed out, Cook et al. defined the consensus as “most warming since 1950 is anthropogenic.” Cook then relied on three different levels of “endorsement” of that consensus and excluded 67% of the abstracts reviewed because they neither endorsed nor rejected the consensus.;
Doran and Kendall Zimmerman, 2009 –
An invitation to participate in the survey was sent to 10,257 Earth scientists. The database was built from Keane and Martinez [2007], which lists all geosciences faculty at reporting academic institutions, along with researchers at state geologic surveys associated with local Universities, and researchers at U.S. federal research facilities (e.g., U.S. Geological Survey, NASA, and NOAA (U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) facilities; U.S. Department of Energy national laboratories; (and so forth). [Note only government scientists, private sector need not apply]
This brief report addresses the two primary questions of the survey

1. When compared with pre-1800s levels, do you think that mean global temperatures have generally risen, fallen, or remained relatively constant?
2. Do you think human activity is a significant contributing factor in changing mean global temperatures?

With 3146 individuals completing.
In our survey, the most specialized and knowledgeable respondents (with regard to climate change) are those who listed climate science as their area of expertise and who also have published more than 50% of their recent peer-reviewed papers on the subject of climate change (79 individuals in total). Of these specialists, 96.2% (76 of 79) answered “risen” to question 1 and 97.4% (75 of 77) answered yes to question 2.

the AMS survey Stenhouse et al., 2014.
In this survey, global warming was defined as “the premise that the world’s average temperature has been increasing over the past 150 years, may be increasing more in the future, and that the world’s climate may change as a result.” Questions –

Regardless of the cause, do you think that global warming is happening?
2a./2b How sure are you that global warming (a. is /b. is not) happening?
How sure are you? –Extremely –Very sure –Somewhat sure –Not at all sure -Don’t know –Not at all sure –Somewhat not sure – Very not sure – Extremely not sure

So answering the questions –
1) most warming since 1950 is anthropogenic?
2) When compared with pre-1800s levels, do you think that mean global temperatures have generally risen, fallen, or remained relatively constant?
3) Do you think human activity is a significant contributing factor in changing mean global temperatures?
4) Regardless of the cause, do you think that global warming is happening?
5) How sure are you that global warming (a. is /b. is not) happening?
Answers and questions use generalized words of most, think, significant, contributing and no values or significance is asked for. No where is proof or dates or amounts or data or +/- estimates required and did you see CO2 anywhere?
Do these questions really provide the answer that; stopping man-made, catastrophizing, CO2 control knob, ever increasing (global warming / climate change / disruption / weirding ) [pick 1 or more], which can only be prevented by higher taxes, more regulations and a loss of personal freedom will actually keep us all from floating down the River Styx in a handbasket?

The Reverend Badger
Reply to  co2isnotevil
July 25, 2017 11:15 am

You appear to have 4 stacked beliefs there, do you have 4 good scientific experiments which would lead to others having the same belief?

Reply to  The Reverend Badger
July 25, 2017 7:46 pm

I wouldn’t be so definitive if I didn’t have the scientific evidence to back me up.
Regarding the claimed sensitivity, I have a solid, testable, repeatable and tested hypothesis based on nothing but first principles physics that predicts a sensitivity range of between about 0.2 and 0.3 C per W/m^2 as opposed to the IPCC range of between 0.4 and 1.2 C per W/m^2. The IPCC sensitivity has never been derived or justified with the laws of physics and its primary justification comes from hyper-inflated trends tortured out of data where most of the trend is ASSUMED to arise from CO2 emissions. I also have many ways to falsify the high sensitivity claimed by the IPCC. The one described below is sufficient.
Joules are Joules and each of the incident 240 W/m^2 of total solar forcing does the same amount of work to warm the surface (work is measured in Joules). The warmed surface emits 390 W/m^2 on average or about 1.6 W/m^2 of emissions per W/m^2 of solar forcing. The last incremental W/m^2 of solar forcing then only resulted in 1.6 W/m^2 of increased surface emissions resulting in a 0.3C increase in temperature. The IPCC expects you to believe that the next W/m^2 will increase surface emissions by 4.3 W/m^2 to manifest the nominal 0.8C rise from 1 W/m^2 of forcing. Since this requires all of the accumulated W/m^2 of forcing to also result in 4.3 W/m^2 of surface emissions, the IPCC sensitivity predicts surface emissions corresponding to the boiling point of water. Clearly it’s not, thus the high sensitivity is falsified.
The ‘consensus’ tries to bamboozle you with effects of latent heat and thermals (Trenberth), but since we are trying to quantify the relationship between the surface temperature and the emissions of the planet, what effect does latent heat and thermals have on either the surface temperature or planet emissions that is not already accounted for by the measured surface temperature and planet emissions?
The also try and confuse you by saying the incremental power gain of 4.3 can be larger than the average power gain of 1.6. This is complete BS since the feedback model they claim does the amplification (Hansen, Schlesinger) assumes strict linearity which requires that the incremental gain and the average gain must be exactly the same. An example where they are not is when an amplifier clips, in which case the usual feedback analysis no longer applies.

Reply to  co2isnotevil
July 25, 2017 11:38 am

I’m among the 97% too, when answering the survey questions,
and I’m probably more of a skeptic than you.
I don’t agree that average temperature of a planet is the “climate”.
But I do agree that humans affect the average temperature data in many ways:
– Poor data collection – surface measurements, vs. satellite measurements, vs. radiosondes
– Multiple raw data adjustments with questionable explanations
– Infilling wild guess data where data are missing (majority of grids).
– Smarmy leftists bureaucrats who own the actuals and want to show continuous warming.
– 1880s thermometers that tended to read low
– Few southern hemisphere measurements before WW II
– Absurd claimed margins of errors.
– Improper surface thermometer siting
– Urban heat island effect
– Multiple changes to sea temperature measurement methodology
– Many other potential effects from humans, including CO2
I will not even concede that CO2 has any measurable effect on the climate based on simple lab experiments, when there is no evidence in average temperature data, even after multiple adjustments and infilling, that anything unusual has happened to the climate.
Tell me the slight warming in the second half of the twentieth century is from man made CO2, but
the very similar slight warming in the first half of the twentieth century was natural climate change,
and I don’t believe they had different causes simply because some leftists say,
Thirty years of fear mongering by smarmy leftists who demonstrate their lack of intelligence by spending their lives lying about how wonderful socialism is — why would anyone believe the following baloney that they tell us?
Global Warmunists claim:
(a) Natural climate change for 4.5 billion years,
(b) 1940: Natural climate change “dies”,
(c) 1940: Man made aerosols take over as “the climate controller”, 
(d) 1975: Man made aerosols “die”,
(e) 1975: Man made CO2 takes over as “the climate controller”,
(f)  2000: Man made CO2 “falls asleep”
(g) 2015 / 2016: Pacific Ocean “El Nino” takes over as “the climate controller” 
My climate blog for non-scientists

George Daddis
Reply to  co2isnotevil
July 25, 2017 3:11 pm

DD, the question I have is:
If Doran and Zimmerman eventually whittled down the 3,146 responses to 79 “pure” climate scientists (by virtue of title and publishing record), just who were the 3 geniuses who said temperatures HAVE NOT risen since pre 1880?!?
BTW, if one is to limit responses that you eventually tally to a closely defined population, would it not make sense (and the results more credible) if that population were defined BEFORE responses were in as contrasted to sending out invitations to 10,257 Earth Scientists?)
Some of us are curious; what were the response percentages for the 10k earth scientists?
Jus’ askin’.

Reply to  co2isnotevil
July 26, 2017 10:31 am

Where I live, it has cooled since 1898, when the local record high temperature was recorded.

Reply to  co2isnotevil
July 26, 2017 10:40 am

“Only” 64% of meteorologists answered “Yes” to Question 2, but more importantly, IMO, “significant” wasn’t defined, and there was no Question 3, ie “Are this warming and other effects of more CO2 beneficial or harmful?”. And just 47% of economic geologists. So, big surprise!, the more your career is based upon manmade “climate change”, the more you believe in it.
Here is Doran & Zimmerman (2009):
Results show that overall, 90% of participants answered “risen” to question1 and 82% answered yes to question 2.In general, as the level of active research and specialization in climate science increases, so does agreement with the two primary questions (Figure1). In our survey, the most specialized and knowledgeable respondents (with regard to climate change) are those who listed climate science as their area of expertise and who also have published more than 50% of their recent peer-reviewed papers on the subject of climate change (79individuals in total). Of these specialists, 96.2% (76 of 79) answered “risen” to question1 and 97.4% (75 of 77) answered yes to question2. This is in contrast to results of a recent Gallup poll (see http:// www . gallup . com/ poll/ 1615/ Environment . aspx) that suggests that only 58% of the general public would answer yes to our question2. The two areas of expertise in the survey with the smallest percentage of participants answering yes to question2 were economic geology with 47% (48 of 103) and meteorology with 64% (23 of 36).

Reply to  co2isnotevil
July 26, 2017 8:46 pm

Co2isEvil writes: ?I wouldn’t be so definitive if I didn’t have the scientific evidence to back me up.
That isn’t an answer. It’s just “trust me”, I believe me, so should you.

Reply to  Bartleby
July 26, 2017 10:05 pm

And then I followed up in the same post with one of many falsification tests that I consider sufficient all by itself. Did you stop reading after the first sentence?

July 25, 2017 10:13 am

The 97% meme was soundly discredited. Why does it live on? (Other than the obvious answer that the MSM continues to support it)

Reply to  markl
July 25, 2017 10:35 am

its one the ‘climate dooms’ greatest victories that they have manged to get this frankly worthless idea accepted in the main stream and become ‘public knowledge’ , lots of unquestioning press support has certainly helped this , but sadly many who should and do know better have helped it along to keep the research cash flowing it .
The whole AGW is likely to be low mark for science , and when it goes back all of the area is going to have to live with the results when it comes to public opinion for years , which is frankly why I think some support it , they know when it goes down it will take them with it so they have no choice but to go all in .

Reply to  knr
July 25, 2017 10:50 am

…but because the news hypes everything….less people are paying attention or believing them

Reply to  knr
July 26, 2017 10:10 pm

It’s weird. The older I get, the less I care about whether I die of lung cancer, prostate cancer, or getting hit by a Muni bus crossing Market and Van Ness.
Is that wrong?

Reply to  markl
July 25, 2017 11:01 am

Well it lives on in infamy since former President Obama used the 97% meme. Unfortunately, he used it to say that Climate Change was really and dangerous. Cook made no attempt to correct it even though it was quite clear that his consensus paper made no such assertion. Or when the head of the Sierra Club used the meme to dodge just about every question during Senate testimony. It continues because no one except skeptics pull up anyone using it to support exaggerated claims.

Reply to  AussieBear
July 25, 2017 11:44 am

“You can keep your doctor!”
No I couldn’t
“You can keep your plan!”
No I couldn’t — my premiums tripled when ObamaCare kicked in for me
Who cares what Obummer used to say?
He doubled the national debt
and had only 1.5% average real GDP growth to show for it
He received the Nobel Peace Prize,
and had us at war every single day of his two terms!

Reply to  AussieBear
July 25, 2017 1:17 pm

Yeah, but he was the first mixed-race half Kenyan as the POTUS, so she* earned the Nobel Peace Award. You know, the people giving Nobel Peace Awards are racists, so that’s the reason.
*I’m sure she does support gender equality.

Reply to  markl
July 25, 2017 11:18 am

Why did the 97% meme live on? It lived on because that’s was the MSMs way of saying “We own the 97% narrative even if it is completely false it doesn’t matter, we know that repeating a lie enough times makes it the truth, resistance is futile, we are the establishment and have infinite resources and you do not, we will continue to repeat the false narrative and rub your faces in it just to show you how omnipotent we are and how small and irrelevant you are, every time we repeat 97% it grinds you down, everytime you protest nothing will happen, eventually you will give up this hopeless fight out of sheer exhaustion”.
It doesn’t work anymore because the Trump/Russia collusion nonsense awoke the public public that the MSM will shamelessly pump a false narrative for months and years.

Gunga Din
Reply to  Scott
July 25, 2017 3:19 pm

The MSM has been trying for years, decades, to tell people what opinions they should have.
I’m old enough to remember when there were only 3 channels here in the US, NBC, ABC, CBS. (PBS wasn’t founded till 1970.)
Then cable came along and spread. CNN (compared to the 3) seemed to be a breath of fresh air.
Then Desert Shield and “Baghdad Pete”. But before CNN could ramp up the type of coverage familiar to those those who remember Viet Nam coverage by the 3 (We were winning the war but you’d never know it from the coverage. The Tet Offensive was the equivalent of Germany’s offensive in “The Battle of the Bulge”. Last gasp.), Desert Storm and it was over.

July 25, 2017 10:18 am

I’m sorry, but how many years has the 97% been wielded, and it’s only now someone pipes up and states it might backfire.
A bit late to the party, methinks.

John Harmsworth
Reply to  HotScot
July 25, 2017 10:51 am

He appears to have conspicuously missed pointing out that the 97% consensus is in fact a lie! I would guess his caution is directed to his fellow Warmunists because the 97% is indefensible.

Reply to  John Harmsworth
July 25, 2017 11:21 am

Yes, the “97 percent consensus” is a bald-faced lie which can be easily proven to be so, so the alarmists probably shouldn’t use it as part of their argument.
But they will because it is one of the few things they can say that they think helps their cause. The alarmists have the “97 percent” lie, and the surface temperature chart lie, and a greenhouse gas theory, and that’s about all they have. Their arguments are based on lies and speculation.

Reply to  John Harmsworth
July 25, 2017 1:09 pm

Seriously, there’s no point in getting irritated at the 97% concoction. The only people who believe it are the alarmist zealots, and trying to reason with them, with all the evidence available to us, is futile. They just dig their heels in.
The fact is that even the global public rate climate change way down on their list of life priorities. In a UN global online poll of 16 subjects, it came 16th, behind internet access.

July 25, 2017 10:19 am

When I was young… 9 out of 10 dentists recommended I use Crest toothpaste. I use both Crest and Colgate, what ever is on sale.

Reply to  Scott Frasier
July 25, 2017 10:49 am

4 out of 5 doctors smoke Camels. Google it if you don’t believe it.

I Came I Saw I Left
Reply to  Dena
July 25, 2017 11:29 am

Hey, I have a great idea. Let’s go to the doctors’ conference and hand out free packs of Camel to as many doctors we can. Then we’ll do a survey at the exit by asking them what brand of cigarette is in their pockets.

Reply to  Dena
July 25, 2017 1:11 pm

I Came I Saw I Left

Reply to  Dena
July 25, 2017 1:18 pm

I like smoked reindeer.

Reply to  Dena
July 26, 2017 6:38 am

HotScot, he’s commenting on ways to make sure that surveys produce the results that you are looking for.

I Came I Saw I Left
Reply to  Dena
July 26, 2017 10:10 am

Specifically, what Philip Morris did, or was accused of doing, to get to that 80% number.

John M. Ware
July 25, 2017 10:25 am

I still get Pepsodent for $1 a tube, and it does just fine. Same for VO5 shampoo, $1 a bottle, also just fine. I don’t need no steenkin consensus . . .

Reply to  John M. Ware
July 25, 2017 11:59 am

Pepsodent is the only regular toothpaste that doesn’t burn my tongue.
I’ve used it for decades.
I recently switched to Crest for Kids on sale for 99 cents each
its pink and tastes like bubble gum – bought about 20 of them
at a Big Lots closeout sale.
Toothpaste has a little fluoride and an abrasive.
Be aware that Pepsodent is unusually abrasive
and may not be optimum for your teeth.
It was recommended for me.
See link comparing various toothpastes.
Your teeth may care what brand you buy.
Your tongue might care too
The VO5 shampoo will have the same main ingredient as many other shampoos.
There’s a another similar ingredient in more expensive shampoos that fades dyed hair less.
But watch out for that VO5.
I had a full head of hair when I started using VO5 40 years ago.
And it caused me to lose most of it.
Proof that cheap shampoo causes hair loss.
I am thinking about suing VO5

Reply to  Richard Greene
July 25, 2017 1:15 pm

Richard Greene
I had a full head of hair before I started drinking beer. I also had a flat stomach and din’t suffer headaches in the morning.
I reckon I have a more robust claim than you 🙂

Gunga Din
Reply to  John M. Ware
July 25, 2017 3:34 pm

I haven’t seen that for years.
I still remember the commercials from when I was a kid.
“You won’t believe where the yellow went when you brush your teeth with Pepsodent!”
PS Apologize in advance to anyone this might offend. A joke.
How do we know the toothbrush was invent in West Virginia?
If it was invented anywhere else it’d be called a “teethbrush”.

Crispin in Waterloo
Reply to  Gunga Din
July 25, 2017 8:40 pm

That’s funny.

July 25, 2017 10:27 am

consensus messaging…..Obama did this at the very start of his campaign
How to manipulate people…..

July 25, 2017 10:31 am

“97% of climate scientists have concluded that human-caused climate change is happening,” hold several serious drawbacks.
one which is simply untrue if you ignore the issues with this ‘research’, and that would take some doing it did not prove this statement at all . Indeed to date there is not even a agreement on what a ‘climate scientists’ even is, its a name that has been applied to failed politicians and railway engineers by AGW proponents and many other no scientific background nor training . Would it be a good idea to what what it it before you try to find out what it thinks ?

July 25, 2017 10:33 am

Consensus pablum’s are for political and propaganda posturing,while reproducible published research drives science forward.

July 25, 2017 10:37 am

The 97% consensus should make any real scientist throw up just a bit in their mouth every time they hear it or read it.

July 25, 2017 10:47 am

51% consensus is democracy but 97% is a dictatorship.

Reply to  vukcevic
July 25, 2017 12:05 pm

97% consensus means nothing.
That’s junk science.
99% consensus is a big deal.
That’s real science.
105% consensus is even better real science
(5% could change their minds and you’d still be at 100%.)
This is real science.
Like adding together global temperature data from instruments with a +/- 1 degree C. accuracy.
The result is accuracy to about four decimal places.
Only a PhD could understand this.

Crispin in Waterloo
Reply to  Richard Greene
July 25, 2017 8:48 pm

PhD = Piled Higher and Deeper

Reply to  Richard Greene
July 26, 2017 5:09 am

Richard, you spot-on. My life has been mathematics and data. From the start of this, I have found the analysis laughable. What I learned in junior high math in the early 70’s was enough to disprove much of the global warming nonsense.

M Courtney
July 25, 2017 10:50 am

The problem with the 97% figure is that no-one knows what it is they agree to.
In short, it’s at best meaningless and at worst deceitful.
So that can backfire, yes.

Reply to  M Courtney
July 25, 2017 12:06 pm

We need a Red Team vs. Blue Team just to figure out what the
97% were agreeing on.

Reply to  Richard Greene
July 25, 2017 1:19 pm

Richard Greene
Find out who they were first, I don’t think many will admit to it.

Gunga Din
Reply to  Richard Greene
July 25, 2017 3:41 pm

We need a Red Team vs. Blue Team just to figure out what the
97% were agreeing on.

But first we need to find out if a scientist even realizes he/she is being counted as part of the “97%”.

Rich Lambert
July 25, 2017 10:51 am

Recent research shows that for 150 years scientists have be wrong about lichens. It had been thought that lichens were symbiotic organisms consisting of algae and fungi. Recently it has been found that they also contains yeast. An article is at this link . So much for scientific consensus.

John Harmsworth
Reply to  Rich Lambert
July 25, 2017 10:59 am

Don’t you mean lichens are being infected with yeast at an alarming rate due to global warming (I mean climate change)? There’s more grant money right there, see?

Reply to  Rich Lambert
July 25, 2017 12:02 pm

Yeast are single cell fungi.

Reply to  Rich Lambert
July 25, 2017 12:05 pm

Lichen has been described as a marriage between algae and fungi.
Sad to report marriage is on the rocks.

Reply to  jarthuroriginal
July 25, 2017 12:45 pm

What a curse, ‘marriage on the rocks’ that is surviving for more than two billion years.

Reply to  jarthuroriginal
July 25, 2017 1:04 pm

Must seem like an eternity !!

Eric Simpson
July 25, 2017 11:00 am

Their “messaging” doesn’t work because the people know that they are liberals that are trying to pull a fast one over us.

“We have to offer up scary scenarios… each of us has to decide the right balance between being effective [dishonest] and being honest [ineffective].” -Stephen Schneider, lead IPCC author, 1989
“Unless we announce disasters no one will listen.” -Sir John Houghton, first ipcc chair


“Entire nations could be wiped off the face of the Earth by rising sea levels if the global warming trend is not reversed by the year 2000.” -Noel Brown, ex UNEP Director, 1989
“A billion people could die from global warming by 2020.” -John Holdren, 1986
“European cities will be plunged beneath rising seas as Britain is plunged into a Siberian climate by 2020.” -Paul Harris, 2004, UK Ecojournalist

For 30+ years they’ve been saying that the end of the world is nigh. The people understand now that they are little more than Crying Wolf Machines spewing out the exact same hysterical garbage year after year, decade after decade…comment image

July 25, 2017 11:01 am

The people who believe in AGW caused by CO2 are the people who are denying science. The science of thermalization and the Maxwell-Boltzmann distribution of molecule energy explain why CO2 does not now, has never had and will never have a significant effect on climate.
Failing to recognize that CO2 has no significant effect on climate is a distressing mistake but is dwarfed by the potential disasters of ignoring what is happening that actually does.

Reply to  Dan Pangburn
July 25, 2017 12:13 pm

It is possible to have a completely happy life without ever
caring about CO2 and what is happening to the climate,
which most likely have little connection, in my opinion.
Especially in the past 200 years as the climate was getting better and better
and CO2 levels were moving towards the optimum of roughy 1,000 ppm
for optimum C3 plant growth, and away from levels that stunt green plant growth.
Weather actually affects people.
But no one lives in the average temperature
… that people claim is the “climate”

Reply to  Richard Greene
July 25, 2017 1:28 pm

Richard Greene
Sorry Richard, I feel like I’m stalking you tonight, which I’m not.
I’ll repeat something I said last night to someone on here, sorry if anyone else saw it and thinks I’m a one trick pony.
But I find it astonishing that in the millions of years of the planets existence, when CO2 reaches it’s lowest point ever, in the planets existence, up rocks man, who discovers fire, then fossil fuels, then agriculture and then industrialisation, which in turn contributes to increased CO2, which greens the planet and provides food for the entire planets living beings.
Now were I a religious man, I would pronounce that a miracle. But I’m not, so I just think it’s possibly one of the most extraordinary coincidences the planet has ever seen.

Reply to  Richard Greene
July 25, 2017 1:43 pm

People tend to see cause and effect relationships, even where there is none! – Fritz Heider
or so I’m told every time I post a graph that more often than not offends someone’s consensus.

Crispin in Waterloo
Reply to  Richard Greene
July 25, 2017 8:55 pm

Without Man, nature is imperfect.

Reply to  Richard Greene
July 26, 2017 6:42 am

Without nature, man is lonely.

July 25, 2017 11:06 am

If the science is so compelling, why don’t they talk up the science?

Killer Marmot
July 25, 2017 11:17 am

The 97% consensus argument always was B.S.
Why? Because at most it says that 97% of climatologists think that man-made CO2 is affecting the climate.
Fine, but there is a vast chasm between that and saying that mankind is doomed if we don’t do something now. Maybe the warming will be relatively mild. Maybe some of the effects will be beneficial. Maybe we should spend money mitigating the effects rather than trying to prevent them.
It reminds me of people who conflate UFOs with space aliens. A UFO is something in the sky that we can’t identify. That’s it. Happens every day. To assume that it’s a space alien is unwarranted without further (really good) evidence.

Reply to  Killer Marmot
July 25, 2017 12:38 pm

As we send manned and unmanned missions to other planets
it is jumping to unreasonable conclusions to claim that
people could not live on other planets
and could not send advanced craft to our planet.
I am so sick of watching the news (Russia Russia Russia)
this year that I have started watching UFO shows instead.
Not only are there thousands of reported UFO sightings by pilots
but there are probably 10 times more pilots reluctant to report
crafts whose movements / silence do not resemble anything they have ever seen in the sky.
There is much evidence of UFO touchdowns (including imprints of landing gear)
and unidentifiable metal alloy waste products left behind
— the most fun is those mysterious complex “overnight” crop circles
that could not possibly have human origins, based on the
unexplainable changes to the plant stalks
seriously examined at the nearby University
of Michigan campus.
I highly recommend the following history channel TV episode on crop circles:
Note that most of the Ancient Alien shows are good shows on
archeology … seriously marred by hard to believe speculation
— this crop circle episode, however, was unusually good
— breathtaking photography from the air.
The wife loved it, and she generally hates UFO shows.
Of course my rare conversations and ever rarer writing about UFOs
leads to ridicule and character attacks
— the same behaviors climate change skeptics receive.

Reply to  Richard Greene
July 25, 2017 1:40 pm

Richard Greene
Jeez, now I do feel I’m stalking you.
I like the concept of UFO’s, if they are true, presumably aliens are peaceful. But my personal opinion is that there’s no reason man couldn’t be the most advanced civilisation in the Universe, and it’s only a matter of time until we are perceived, by other less developed beings, as mysterious visitors.
I mean, if alien visitation is to occur somewhere, why shouldn’t it be us that starts the ball rolling?
However, the whole concept of UFO’s visiting us could have kicked off the concept of a God, in the sky. After all, I believe our early ancestors worshipped the soil, where crops emerged from, so what kicked off the God in the sky thing?
I have no particular view on the subject, just a few questions. No ridicule from me mate, keep going.

Reply to  Richard Greene
July 25, 2017 5:33 pm

“I am so sick of watching the news (Russia Russia Russia)
this year that I have started watching UFO shows instead.”
I tune into “Forensic Files” for a break from the nattering nabobs.
Those UFO shows drive me nuts because as you describe, they are “seriously marred by hard to believe speculation”. The people on these shows assume things not in evidence, just like climate alarmists do.

Reply to  Richard Greene
July 26, 2017 6:44 am

There’s a world of difference between saying that there is no conclusive proof and declaring that something doesn’t exist.

Phillip Bratby
July 25, 2017 11:19 am

What is the consensus position of the 3%?

Reply to  Phillip Bratby
July 25, 2017 12:40 pm

Actually there was a vote and 3% of the scientists misplaced their ballots = 97% consensus.
If they had been more careful it would have been 100% consensus.

Roger Graves
July 25, 2017 11:20 am

“Give me a child until he is seven and he will be ours for life”, or so said Ignatius Loyola, founder of the Jesuits.
Children in our schools today are indoctrinated with the CAGW meme from the earliest age. They believe in it, not because it is a matter of logic or observable facts, but because it has become their religion; there is no room in their minds for any contrary beliefs. Attempts to tell them that perhaps their fears are overblown results in instinctive distrust and anger –
A fundamental characteristic of all religions is that they are necessarily a matter of belief. If something is self-evident, you don’t need to believe in it, it just is. Gravity is not a matter of belief, it is self-evident from the moment you get out of bed. Belief is only necessary for things that are not self-evident, and climate change is not self-evident. But the nature of the human psyche is such that once a belief has taken hold of the population at large, it is very difficult to shake it off. It is almost impossible to do so by appealing to logic or to anything factual. The only way to do it is by providing a shock to the system which shows that belief to be unnecessary or irrelevant.
Donald Trump may provide that shock. We can but hope.

The Reverend Badger
Reply to  Roger Graves
July 25, 2017 11:35 am

The appropriate reproducible experiment may well provide said shock. Without some experiments on CO2 and the atmosphere I think we could still be arguing and using computer models for a couple more decades.
Don’t scientists get excited about doing experiments anymore, especially ones where they are not entirely sure of the results ?

Stevan Reddish
Reply to  Roger Graves
July 25, 2017 12:12 pm

Roger Graves July 25, 2017 at 11:20 am
While I agree with the gist of your post, I must disagree with your conflation of belief and religion:
“A fundamental characteristic of all religions is that they are necessarily a matter of belief. If something is self-evident, you don’t need to believe in it, it just is.”
I imagine you believe that the Earth orbits the sun. Since this is not self-evident, is Sol Centrism your religion? Or do you concede that it is OK to believe in something that is not self-evident if investigation of relevant facts supports that belief?
(I am not a believer in CAGW as no investigation of relevant facts does support it.)

Phil R
Reply to  Roger Graves
July 25, 2017 12:30 pm

That quote, or variations of it, have also been attributed to Lenin. Here’s another:
“Give me four years to teach the children and the seed I have sown will never be uprooted.”
Vladimir Lenin

Reply to  Roger Graves
July 25, 2017 12:53 pm

Donald Trump is not smart enough to speak for five minutes on climate change, or any other subject besides salesmanship and public speaking, without a TelePrompTer and he’s not a good TelePrompTer reader )Obama’s greatest / only skill).
Didn’t Trump once blame global warming on China?
I think Trump is smart enough to know the predictions of doom are not believable,
but not smart enough or brave enough to effectively speak up about “climate junk science”.
I suspect we skeptics are doomed if Donald Trump tries to refute mainstream climate beliefs.
If Trump fires half the existing “blue team’ and replaces then with a permanent “red team”,
then he and Scott Pruit are smarter and braver than I have assumed.
Please don’t think I’m a Trump hater and give me a hard time:
I just finished a seven page report on his first six months for my economics newsletter, and here is my conclusion that will probably offend most of my subscribers and all of my liberal friends who got free copies:
PRESIDENT TRUMP: The Results, Not the insults
Based on the results, not the insults:
From my libertarian ‘smaller government is better’ point of view:
— President Trump had the BEST first six months of any president in my lifetime.
From a traditional conservative point of view:
— President Trump was better than President Reagan in his first six months,
and probably the best since the 1920s.
From a ‘bigger government is better’ Democrat point of view:
— President Trump was the WORST President since the 1920s!

Reply to  Richard Greene
July 25, 2017 5:55 pm

I agree with your conclusions on Trump. As a conservative, I couldn’t ask for much more than what Trump is giving us, or attempting to give us. Some people say Trump’s not a conservative, but his policies certainly are.
Trump is just what we need in the White House right now. He has his flaws, but I think his heart is in the right place, and he is an extremely effective executive who knows how to get things done. He has signed something like 40 bills into law, more than previous presidents at the same time in Office, and he has done away with 840 Obama regulations that were hampering business.
If Trump can get Obamacare repealed, that will be an enormous help for businesses and will spur employment, as will tax cuts/tax reform.
There are big possible economic stimulations coming if the Republican Congress can just get its act together and pass some of these bills.

Reply to  Richard Greene
July 25, 2017 6:14 pm

TA says: “He has signed something like 40 bills into law, more than previous presidents at the same time in Office.”
On Trump’s 150th day in office he has signed 39 bills.
Jimmy Carter signed 48, and Bill Clinton signed 41. President George H. W. Bush signed the same number as Trump, 39.

Reply to  Richard Greene
July 26, 2017 6:04 am

Trump has been in Office over 180 days. How about using that time period for your comparisons.

Reply to  Richard Greene
July 26, 2017 6:11 am

You made the claim, show me the data.

Reply to  Richard Greene
July 26, 2017 6:15 am

As of July 17th Trump has signed 42.

Reply to  Richard Greene
July 26, 2017 6:17 am

President Jimmy Carter signed 70 bills in the first six months, according to an analysis of bills signed by previous White House occupants. Bill Clinton signed 50.

Reply to  Richard Greene
July 26, 2017 6:33 am

I will admit one “record” Trump has achieved. He has lied more than 100 times, more than previous presidents at the same time in Office.

Reply to  Richard Greene
July 26, 2017 6:46 am

Saying something that the left doesn’t agree with, is not the definition of a lie.

Reply to  Roger Graves
July 25, 2017 1:50 pm

The difference is that CAGW proponents promise an apocalypse that will never happen.
When our children realise they have been duped, there will be an enormous political backlash.
This won’t end well. That dystopian future depicted in so many movies may emerge at the hands of socialism and there will be the usual, predictable, well documented, historical revolt.
I suspect Trump is the guy to jerk the world from it’s myopic belief in government wisdom. Nor was I a fan of his, but he’s taking big decisions and fulfilling big campaign promises.
And to be frank, In my opinion, any decision is better than no decision. That seems to be Trumps mantra.

Reply to  HotScot
July 25, 2017 5:57 pm

“When our children realise they have been duped, there will be an enormous political backlash.”
I believe that. People don’t like being fooled. One of these days there will be a rude awakening.

July 25, 2017 11:22 am

The Consensus does not like the constraints necessary to maintain the integrity of science. They are materially predisposed to extrapolate from isolated experiments, place their faith in circumstantial evidence, and indulge in circular reasoning, to inference with global proportions. Unfortunately, the conflation of logical domains and dreams of redistributive change have been a progressive condition in our post-enlightenment civilization.

July 25, 2017 11:27 am

97% of doctors thought that peptic ulcerss were caused by stress, until Marshall and Warren demonstrated they were wrong. The consensus backed the wrong horse, yet again.

Reply to  ralfellis
July 25, 2017 12:56 pm

If the scientific consensus was always right,
there would be no progress in science.
Everything would be settled science.
In fact the consensus is usually wrong —
ranging from slightly wrong to completely wrong.
Although it could take 100 years to know they were wrong.

The Reverend Badger
July 25, 2017 11:30 am

I think we should start using this phrase loudly and more often;
“No, that’s a lie !”

Reply to  The Reverend Badger
July 25, 2017 12:37 pm

Last couple of times the 9x% consensus was thrown at me, I responded with a loud laugh.
– ‘what’s so funny’
– ‘never heard of it, aren’t you confusing science with the results of the N. Korean elections?

Reply to  vukcevic
July 26, 2017 6:48 am

Didn’t Saddam Hussein win his last election by 99.9%

Svend Ferdinandsen
July 25, 2017 11:32 am

Climatism is a religion, why would it else be important to make peoble believe. They do not try to learn peoble anything, no they should just believe and be convinced of a theory that hardly anyone can explain.
Would it be important for the theory of gravity and planetary movements that peoble believed it?
Like in old times when all should believe in God. Those who doubted, even if they lived like all othes, could call on Gods punishment to all. I can’t understand why the god would punish all, but climatism uses the same narrative.

Reply to  Svend Ferdinandsen
July 25, 2017 1:59 pm

Svend Ferdinandsen
I don’t think it’s a religion, and if you accuse people of that, they’ll laugh in your face.
It is, however, in my belief, a political movement. Even the UN has admitted it’s the vehicle to transfer wealth from the rich to the poor.
Nor do I disagree with that ambition, except it should be done via free trade and market forces, not governmental coercion.
Left to their own devices, the former communist states of the USSR and China (nominally) will become sophisticated, civilised (by the west’s standards) trading nations. They have hardly shaken off communism in the last 30 years or so, at least give them the 100 years or so the west had to develop a peaceful, free trading environment.

July 25, 2017 11:34 am

In 1931, a book titled “100 Authors Against Einstein” was published. Included among the 100 were physicists and mathematicians. Thus at the time, the consensus was 99% against Einstein to which he replied – Why 100? If I am wrong, one would do.

July 25, 2017 11:48 am

Consensus: climate changes, CO2 is a GHG so should have some warming effect.
No consensus: how much compared to natural variability (attribution), sensitivity.
Consensus except amongst die hard CAGW believers: planet is greening, SLR is not accelerating, polar bears are thriving, Arctic summer sea ice has not and will not disappear, models overstate tropical troposphere warming by 1.7x (Santer after erroneous corrections) or 3.5x (Christy UAH), renewables don’t work without ruinous subsidies, are intermittent, and destabilize the grid.

July 25, 2017 11:56 am

There is a strong element of shaming behind the 97% meme. If you don’t agree with it and all the implied but unstated baggage attached to it, you’re stupid. Look how it’s thrown around. Rather than a gentle urging for the unconvinced, it is used as a weapon to beat opposition senseless.

July 25, 2017 11:57 am

Then there is that peer-review gambit …

Reply to  Neo
July 25, 2017 2:06 pm

I’m a sceptic, but come on. These were rouge journals that published that paper, and the object of the exercise was to expose them. They would have published anything controversial, even sceptical papers. Nor do I believe the papers were peer reviewed, although I stand to be corrected on that.

Reg Nelson
Reply to  HotScot
July 25, 2017 8:03 pm

The BEST paper was published in one of these “rouge” (pay-for-play) journals, long after the Mueller PR tour, and after the paper was rejected by all respectable, mainstream scientific journals.
Alarmists still cite this paper as proof of something (Mueller lied about being a skeptic). Pretty sad and pathetic really.

Reply to  Neo
July 26, 2017 2:01 am

My favourite reply to that is “peer-reviewed, published research shows that about 50% of peer-reviewed, published research is wrong.”

July 25, 2017 12:15 pm

All any skeptic need do is to display that graph that contains the predictions of temperatures by a large number of global warming models, along with the actual Earth temperatures. Those predictive lines are all over the place and wildly disagree with one another- this is NOT the picture of a consensus.

Tom Halla
July 25, 2017 12:33 pm

Interesting a purported sociologist quoted the 97% theme. This is either an example of sloppyness or deception, as the comments describe in depth.

Joel Snider
July 25, 2017 12:34 pm

Yeah, you say these things publically you increase the chances that someone might actually remember what you said, increases exponentially.

Joel Snider
Reply to  Joel Snider
July 25, 2017 12:35 pm

Okay – butchered the grammar on that sentence, but you get the point.

Reply to  Joel Snider
July 25, 2017 1:26 pm

That was cruel. But true, if you tell untruths publicly, people may notice.

July 25, 2017 12:35 pm

Yeah, “correcting” public beliefs. This from the people who *need* the 97% consensus.

July 25, 2017 1:11 pm

All very well and good to criticize those saving the planet for arguing from consensus, but what else can you do if none of the facts support the cause?

paul courtney
July 25, 2017 1:19 pm

“97% consensus. It’s real, it’s here, and it’s dangerous.” Consensus on what? Why, the intelligence agency conclusion that the Russians meddled in our election, of course. Please note one striking similarity- in both cases, a bit of truth is conflated with a lie. “Russians meddled” (a bit true) lets the reader infer that Russia actually made a difference (a lie) with “collusion” (another lie). In CAGW, climate change (true, it does seem to change) lets the reader infer that it’s all man caused (a lie). And the progressive activists in white smocks can count on their friends in the progressive press to never, ever to correct the inference.

Reply to  paul courtney
July 25, 2017 2:10 pm

Has the US/UK/Germany/France etc. ever interfered with a Russian election?
Will we ever know?
And if the Russians found it so easy to interfere, why wouldn’t the Chinese, Koreans, or even Cuban’s be in there like Flynn.

Paul Courtney
Reply to  HotScot
July 25, 2017 6:00 pm

Scot: Yes, as I recall Obama told US press what he wanted, was surprised Russian media missed the story, and took credit when Putin only won 95%-5% (later the opponent as killed for making it too close). If it gets any easier, maybe even americans will interfere in US elections. As in, US press reporting on dark doings of democrat party rather than leaving it to wikileaks.

July 25, 2017 1:23 pm

Who are the 3% of the published climate scientists that disagree and what papers did they publish?
I know they don’t mean any of the people they call shills and paid deniers… if it was 100 scientists the they could point out the three respected scientists that disagree…

July 25, 2017 1:23 pm

It’s sun that does it (no consensus required)

credit NASA

Peta from Cumbria - now Newark
July 25, 2017 1:42 pm

What is worrying is that its taken these ‘brain-boxes’ so long to realise what most peeps instinctively know, on 2 fronts.
1. Western (ordinary) folks, certainly UK peeps anyway, always tend to ‘back the underdog’
So, in a 2 horse race, most folks will be egging on the nag with the 3% chance of winning.
2. Also (western) folks have been relentlessly bombarded by advertising (media messages) about (typically) household products that “Clean 97 more dishes” or “Remove 97 more stains” or “Kill 97 more germs”
After these much hyped things have been tried/tested/used for a while, it becomes entirely obvious to the consumers that they have been had. Actual experience reveals that the ‘97%’ products are just the same as ‘non97%’ products yet are a stack more expensive.
IOW, they are not to be trusted and/or stink.
That the 97% meme has been pushed so hard is very revealing. Not only about the naivete of whoever created it but that of the folks who pushed it so hard.
We may not be in a new Dark Age quite yet but we are certainly going through some very Dim Times right now.

Reply to  Peta from Cumbria - now Newark
July 25, 2017 1:50 pm

3. Also (western) folks are doomed to extinction
“Study reveals 60% drop in fertility since 1970 – driven by the unhealthy Western lifestyle”

Reply to  Peta from Cumbria - now Newark
July 25, 2017 2:35 pm

Well, it’s just one of many Dim Ages, but we’re certainly in one.

July 25, 2017 1:43 pm

Proper spelling is … CON–SINS–us.
Thus, a 97% CON–SINS–us is completely valid, since the statistic is a sinful con imposed upon us.

Gunga Din
July 25, 2017 3:49 pm

We don’t have a “Boy Who Cried Wolf” catergory~ctm

Maybe you should.
It could include failed predictions/projections and the scares that demand action now to prevent future failed predictions/projections.
Call it “The Mann Who Cried Wolf”?

Gunga Din
Reply to  Gunga Din
July 25, 2017 4:24 pm

(Too bad Hansen’s last name wasn’t “Mann”.)

July 25, 2017 4:05 pm

Scientists never registered and voted on the AGW conjecture so there is no consensus. Even if there were it would be meaningless because science is not a democracy. The laws of science are not some form of legislation. Scientific theories are not validated through a voting process.
The AGW conjecture sounds plausable at first but upon closer inspection, the AGW conjecture is full of holes and based upon only partial science. The AGW conjecture is based upon the existance of a radiant greenhouse effect that has not been observed anywhere in the solar system. The radiant greenhouse effect is science fiction so hence the AGW conjecture is science fiction.

John Robertson
July 25, 2017 8:56 pm

I disagree with the Boy Who Cried Wolf,parable.
This entire swindle has been the “Emperors New Clothes”
1990’s version.
The conmen have used the very words of the original swindle ‘As in if you cannot see and feel the fabric of this beautiful lie, you are obviously unfit to hold any position of trust or authority in modern society.”.
The rerun is a very faithful reproduction.

July 25, 2017 11:51 pm

We can all agree climate changes . The deniers are the ones who think
Mother Nature is some how giving up her job after 6 billion years because a failed politician with no scientific credentials claims the earth has a fever caused by the portion of CO2 attributed to human use of fossil fuels .
Science isn’t sausage making . Consensus is sausage making .
The Climate Swindle is over …killed by it’s own overhyped lies .

July 26, 2017 6:31 am

The shocking discovery of the ozone hole, that has existed since Antarctica moved over the southern pole.

July 26, 2017 10:14 am

“resulting in an uncertain evidence-base”
Is that the social science term for “bullsh-t”?

July 26, 2017 5:30 pm

I always use the 97% consensus against the alarmist, by advising them “there is no consensus on catastrophic, dangerous or even inconvenient AGW, many 97% studies have been done and none claim this”

July 26, 2017 5:36 pm

The Anderegg(2010) papers claims 97% support the tenets of ACC outlined by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
Ask an alarmist to list the tenets, with a source, it can’t be done, they all come up with varying answers, none of which are supported with a source, some just try linking to the IPCC itself.

August 3, 2017 6:33 pm

Why bother, when not one single hard-data-based study in the peer-reviewed climate-related literature actually confirms the generally accepted link between atmospheric carbon dioxide increase and global warming? A little thought offers the far more credible model of anthropogenic thinning of the ozone shield as the principal cause of climate change, which was stabilized by the Montreal Protocol and will gradually diminish as the long-lived, catalytic chlorine we introduced into the atmosphere in CFCs eventually dissipates.

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