I agree with Barry Brook that Ian Plimer’s approach to climate science in Heaven Earth is unscientific. He starts with his conclusion that there is no “evidential basis” that humans have caused recent warming and that the theory that humans can create global warming

is contrary to validated knowledge from solar physics, astronomy, history, archeology and geology.

He accepts any factoid that supports his conclusion and rejects any evidence that contradicts his conclusion. For example, he blindly accepts EG Beck’s CO2 graph. And remember Khilyuk and Chilingar? The guys who compared human CO2 emissions with natural C02 emissions over the entire history of the planet and concluded that human emissions didn’t matter. As I wrote earlier:

their mistake is so large and so obvious that anyone who cites them either has no clue about climate science or doesn’t care whether what they write is true or not.

Plimer doesn’t cite them once he cites them three times.

And what of evidence that contradicts his conclusion? For example, the fact that the stratosphere is cooling contradicts his theory that the sun is the cause of recent warming. What does Plimer say about this in a 500 page book with a 70 page chapter on the atmosphere? Nothing. It’s not mentioned at all.

And look at Plimer’s figure 3 that he presents to prove that CO2 doesn’t cause warming because of all the cooling in the “post-war economic boom”:

i-e1aa2fd7c048a807e77dc6592a293231-plimerfig3.png

Plimer doesn’t tell you the source of this graph, but it comes from Durkin’s Great Global Warming Swindle and omits the last 20 years of warming. Even Durkin admitted it was wrong and changed it, but it lives on in Plimer’s book.

Compare Plimer’s Swindle graph with the one from the IPCC AR4 Summary for Policymakers below. Plimer doesn’t print this but tells his readers that it “showed cooling for 100 of the last 160 years”.

i-755f68f9a2c4316f49fd5b16cfa5b506-ar4wg1spmfig3a.png

The problems with the Swindle graph were given wide publicity. It was one of seven major misrepresentations that 37 scientists asked Durkin to correct. On page 467 Plimer addresses their request claiming they did so because that deemed Swindle to present an “incorrect moral outlook”, so he was well aware of what was wrong with the Swindle graph but used it anyway.

Here are the notes I made on some of the other problems with Plimer’s book. These are nowhere near exhaustive — this is just what leapt off the page and assaulted me.

Update: See also Ian Enting’s extensive list

p11 No source given for figure 1 but is based on a graph in AR4WG1 Technical Summary. The massive drop in temperatures comes from using the temps for the first half of 2008 to represent all of 2008. It looks very different if you graph the actual 2008 temp, added in red below:

i-b3244bbff3f6ddd6b2e0241716660550-plimerfig1.png

p14 Claims IPCC has no evidence to support its conclusion of 90% certainty that at least half of recent warming is anthropogenic. Nowhere does he even admit the existence of the evidence in Chapter 9 of AR4 WG1

p19 repeats Paul Reiter’s false claims about the IPCC authors on the health effects of global warming

p21 Repeats SEPP smear of Santer

p22 Claims hockey stick is a fraud

p25 Figure 3 is infamous graph from the Great Global Warming Swindle. Graphs ends in 1987 but horizontal scale makes it look like it goes to 2000. Even Swindlers had to fix this one.

p26 Figure 4: Start point of graph is cherry picked to mislead

p87-99 claims hockey stick is a fraud and the NRC panel that vindicated it was a cover up.

p99 False claims that GISS was forced to withdraw claims about global temperature. Plimer confuses USA temperatures with the global ones.

p131 Figure 15 Dodgy sunspot temperature graph from GGWS. Ends in 1980, if continued sunspot-temp correlation goes away.

p198 claims Arctic sea ice is expanding

p198 claims drowned polar bears were actually killed by “high winds”

p198 claims polar bear numbers are increasing

p199 claims malaria is common in cold climates. No cite!

p209 Claims undersea volcanoes can have a profound effect on surface temps

p217 Claims Pinatubo eruption released “very large quantities of chloroflourocarbons, the gases that destroy the ozone layer.” Cites Brasseur and Granier who actually say the opposite:

after the eruption of Mount Pinatubo, the input of chlorine to the stratosphere was probably small.

p281 Claims alpine glaciers are not retreating. Cited source actually says that glacial retreat is not accelerating.

p286 Claims the IPCC has “no evidence” to support its statement that glaciers are retreating.

p322 Cites Morner on Maldives.

p325 Says that even if we burn all fossil fuels we won’t be able to double atmospheric CO2.

p349 the hockey stick is “infamous”

p366 Claims climate sensitivity is 0.5C. No footnote!

p367 Confused about by the fact that the Earth warms the atmosphere and asks how this means GHGs can cause warming. How does he think a blanket works?

p370 Claims 98% of GH effect is H2O. No footnote!

p371 Claims climate sensitivity is 0.5C. No footnote!

p376 Claims that if temperature measurements are rounded to the nearest degree, the average of many measurements is only accurate to the nearest degree.

p377 Claims that surfacestations.org proves that temp measurements have a warming bias

p378 Implies that surface record does not include measurements in the oceans

p381 claims molten rocks significantly warm ocean. No cite!

p382 “In fact, satellites and radiosondes show that there is no global warming.[1918]” Woohoo! at last a cite. Trouble is, it says exactly the opposite of what Plimer claims

p382 claims hockey stick is a fabrication

p388 claims no such thing as an average temp, citing Essex and McKitrick nonsense

p391 claims Hadley Centre has shown that warming stopped in 1998. Hadley says:

Anyone who thinks global warming has stopped has their head in the sand.

p391 claims IPCC ignores 2/3 of the cooling effect of evaporation citing Wentz et al, but Wentz says no such thing

p413 claims volcanoes produce more CO2 than humans. No cite! This one was in GGWS. Plimer’s a geologist. You’d think he would at least know something about volcanoes.

p420 figure 52 is Beck’s bogus CO2 graph

p421 claims only 4% of CO2 in atmosphere is from humans. No cite!

p425 claims anthropogenic CO2 produces only 0.1% of global warming. No cite!

p425 claims IPCC have exaggerated CO2 forcing 20 fold.

p437 “Chapter 5 of IPCC AR4 (Humans Responsible for Climate Change) .. is based on the opinions of just five independent scientists”. Wrong chapter number, chapter title, and it has over 50 authors.

p442 claims Lysenko parallels the global warming movement

p443 repeats Monckton’s claims about An Inconvenient Truth without mentioning that most were rejected by the court

p444 claims IPCC reports are written by just 35 scientists who are controlled by an even smaller number

p452 cites Oregon petition

p452 cites Peiser’s false claims about Oreskes

p467 claims that the 38 scientists who asked Durkin to correct the errors in GGWS did so because that deemed it to present an “incorrect moral outlook”. One of the error that they wanted Durkin to correct was the bogus graph that Plimer puts on page 25.

p474 claims hockey stick is dishonest

p477 quotes Khilyuk & Chilingar whose thesis is that humans aren’t responsible because our CO2 emissions, measured over the history of the planet, are less than that of volcanoes. Also cited on p479 and p492.

p484 claims IPCC AR4 WG1 SPM “showed cooling for 100 of the last 160 years”

p485 claims Montreal Protocol used precautionary principle to ban CFCs but we didn’t ban chlorination even though chlorine destroys ozone!!! [Not in the stratosphere it doesn't]

p486 misrepresents Revelle

p486 cites false WorldNetDaily claim that Gore buys offsets from himself

p487 cites Melanie Philips as an authority on the hockey stick, asserting it is the “most discredited study in the history of science”

p472 claims Pinatubo emitted as much CO2 as humans in a year. No cite! And obviously wrong if you glance at Mauna Loa data.

p472 termite methane emissions are 20 times potent than human CO2 emissions. No cite!

p492 false claim that DDT ban killed 40 million

Comments

  1. #1 luminous beauty
    June 2, 2009

    Ray,

    I guess I cannot deny that I’m a climate skeptic.

    You just did.

    What seems rational is very often not rational. Especially when the seeming arises from agreement from one’s a priori beliefs.

    That’s not skepticism, it is credulity.

  2. #2 Rhys Jaggar
    June 2, 2009

    I have neither yet read the book, nor have I any opinion on Professor Plimer as a scientist.

    What I can say, however, is that AGW proponents have repeatedly used ad hominem attacks on many of those who question them, which does not paint them in the light of serious scientists or politicians.

    I can say that those in the AGW camp are every bit as selective in the data they use as the skeptics they deride for such a practice (start by asking why 1961 and not 1940 is used as the start for ‘normality'; start looking at PDO/AMO indices for correlation with US temperature as they are better than seeohtwo etc etc).

    And I can say that both camps are increasingly becoming more strident in their claims and more desperate in their assertions.

    What most of us want is to stop all this bickering and just to focus on some essentials:
    1. It might be a good idea to make buildings and homes energy efficient.
    2. It might be a good idea to stop chopping down the equatorial forests.
    3. It might be a good idea to plan for an economy where oil+gas are not the dominant power supply.

    That’s what you can focus on if you believe in DOING something. You don’t need carbon dioxide arguments for that. You need business, enironmental and political ones.

    And most of us in the real world are sick and tired of those three key types of argument being rejected in favour of unsubstantiated computer-modelling-driven hyperbole.

    It’s not very hard, you know…….

  3. #3 Peter
    June 2, 2009

    If these climate modellers are so confident in their models why arent they cleaning up by trading in oil futures (a system which is many orders of magnitude less complex than the planet) instead of wasting time on the impossible task of modelling climate change?

    Models are simply representations of an internal view of how things ought to work. Generally you can test them – does this model adequately predict the behaviour of the river or whatever for the purposes of what I am about to do with the results. Unfortunately with climate (rather than weather) you cant do this as you can never get back to the data as there is no way of separating the signal from the noise. You cant test the model for predictions as there is no data to test it against (if you use a different data set than you used to build the model it is still from the same population so it isnt a valid test – and with sufficient variables and interconnections you can make any data fit!)

    So I guess it all comes down to a big fat “not proven” and that is before anyone starts making the data up to support their case – either pro or con.

  4. #4 Eli Rabett
    June 2, 2009

    You selling 30 year oil futures Pete?

    Gavin Schmidt had a good answer in Salon

    This is reinforced all the time in popular culture. And the way we teach science is that Newton said “X” and it’s correct, so learn this formula. This promotes the idea that science knows all the answers. Whereas when you look at any actual working scientist, whether it’s in climate change or medicine or building a nuclear power plant, the stock in trade of science is uncertainty; it’s not certainty.

    Niels Bohr said, “Prediction is difficult, particularly when it’s about the future.” People demand certainty from scientists they would never demand from any other field of life. In economic policy, with the stimulus package, are we saying, “This will fix everything”? No, there are all these variables like consumer confidence, and people understand it’s a complex problem. Yet when it comes to something slightly more scientific, you often hear that unless the science is 100 percent certain, it’s not worth listening to.

    People clearly recognize the limits of scientific knowledge in medicine. One reason we use a medical analogy in the book — symptoms, diagnosis, cures — was to tap into this. We have symptoms, the doctor prods and pokes and says, “Let’s have a follow-up test,” and then comes back with, “Well, maybe you need to cut down on your cholesterol. Maybe you can take this drug. It might have side effects.” People don’t expect a doctor to predict exactly the day that they’re going to die, or even exactly what they have. Doctors have an enormous body of knowledge that allows them to treat people with beneficial effects, but there’s no guarantee. People understand that.

  5. #5 Dirk Hartog
    June 2, 2009

    Re: Ray #392,

    I think it would be true to say that every child above the age of 7, who has the benefit of an education system, would be able to tell you with great certainty that the moon is not made of cheese.

    But I suspect that very few school children have heard of EG Beck. I’d never heard of him myself before I came across this blog, and I’m much older than 7.

    It is true, anyone can appreciate the the moon isn’t made of cheese. It is also true, however, that any scientist with any competence whatsoever would be able to realize that Plimer’s statement that “there is recent visual evidence of rigid iron-rich structures below the Sun’s fluid outer zone” is also ludicrous (hint: iron melts at temperatures of below 2000K – the sun is hotter than 5800K). Similarly, any climate scientist would tell you that the Beck CO2 graph is totally, mind-numbingly, absurd.

    Yes, it does require increasing levels of scientific knowledge to appreciate the errors in these three examples. If your own knowledge isn’t up to it (which is quite understandable, no slur intended), then you should either trust the opinions of the climate scientists, or be agnostic. For Plimer to include the last two errors in his book is inexcusable. And these are just two of the most obvious errors. The entire book is full of them. That is why there hasn’t been a single respected scientist who has agreed with the book, and there have been over a dozen, all the way to Professor Kurt Lambeck, President of the Australian Academy of Science, who have come out strongly against it with specific claims against the “science”. And yet Plimer claims that no one is arguing with his science. It is hard to understand this claim.

    unless Plimer were stark, raving bonkers

  6. #6 Dano
    June 2, 2009

    Well, I guess it’s up to me then.

    I call bullsh– on Jaggar in 402.

    Best,

    D

  7. #7 Dano
    June 2, 2009

    Well, I guess it’s up to me then.

    I call bullsh– on Jaggar in 402.

    Best,

    D

  8. #8 bluegrue
    June 2, 2009

    Rhys Jaggar
    >I can say that those in the AGW camp are every bit as selective in the data they use as the skeptics they deride for such a practice (start by asking why 1961 and not 1940 is used as the start for ‘normality'; start looking at PDO/AMO indices for correlation with US temperature as they are better than seeohtwo etc etc)

    What indeed _would_ change, if we took 1940 instead of 1961 as start of ‘normality’? If you were to look at e.g. temperature anomalies, all that would happen would be an added constant to the anomalies and a few intermonthly changes which would be smaller than the line width of the plot. As we are interested in multi-decadal slopes of these plots these changes are inconsequential. What consequences were you thinking of, Rhys?

    US temperatures do correlate to PDO/AMO indices, that’s not controversial. Firstly, why do you consider this local correlation (US approx. 2% of Earth surface) to be important for global climate changes, secondly what is driving Pacific and Atlantic temperatures? Why do you neglect aerosols?

  9. #9 Eli Rabett
    June 2, 2009

    Lots of stuff from atmospheric scientists on ol EG. For example, Georg Hoffman cuts him a new one here and then does it again in German here and

  10. #10 Eli Rabett
    June 2, 2009

    Lots of stuff from atmospheric scientists on ol EG. For example, Georg Hoffman cuts him a new one here and then does it in German here and Eli gets his licks in and then links to Ralph Keeling who is in the family business as well as Haro Meijer, both atmospheric scientists

  11. #11 Gaz
    June 2, 2009

    Rhys Jaggar: “I can say that those in the AGW camp are every bit as selective in the data they use as the skeptics.”

    Oh, bull. When was the last time your a proper climate scientist using a graph covering 6 1/2 years to illustrate the relationship between CO2 and temperatures?

  12. #12 Janet Akerman
    June 2, 2009

    Rhys Jaggar @ 402

    I have neither yet read the book, nor have I any opinion on Professor Plimer as a scientist.

    I can say that those in the AGW camp are every bit as selective in the data they use as the skeptics they deride for such a practice

    That’s a special skill you have Rhys Jaggar, reading is over rated isn’t it.

  13. #13 frankis
    June 2, 2009

    I shall miss our most credulous interlocutor Ray but welcome the terrifically well-named Rhys Jaggar!

    Rhys you start well I think with

    What most of us want is to stop all this bickering and just to focus on some essentials: 1. It might be a good idea to make buildings and homes energy efficient. 2. It might be a good idea to stop chopping down the equatorial forests. 3. It might be a good idea to plan for an economy where oil+gas are not the dominant power supply.

    but you’ve accidentally omitted something, am I right? You meant to include coal as perhaps the most significant of the dirty fosil fuels that we must learn to live without – correct?

  14. #14 Chris O'Neill
    June 3, 2009

    Ray:

    There appears to be several types of ad hominem attacks.

    Meaning the ones Ray accused Tim Lambert of so far didn’t really occur.

    Perhaps we should create another type called “ad hominem occulo”, meaning ‘hidden ad hom’, or “ad hominem dissimulatus”, meaning ‘ad hom in disguise’.
    This is the way it works.

    Obviously the OED definition isn’t good enough for Ray anymore.

    I feel like delivering an ad hom criticism because my preferences and principles are so different to my opponent, but I don’t want to be accused of the ad hominem method of argument, so I look for all the errors I can find, however small they may be, then blow up one or two of them out of all proportion.
    I then try to make it appear that these mistake are so egregious and inexusable that I can call my oponent a complete idiot, or clueless, whilst simultaneously making it appear that I am merely making a logical inference.

    You still don’t get it Ray. Ad hom STARTS with calling someone a complete idiot or cluess or something else in an attempt to say their arguments are wrong, not the other way around. Another part of the OED defintion says:

    Some arguments, and answers are ad hominem, that is, they respect the thing in quæstion, not simply, BUT AS IT COMMETH FROM SUCH A MAN.

    Ray’s arguments are classic science denialism. They remind me of the argument that tries to attribute radiation forcing to the Sun. Once they are shown that this forcing is much smaller than CO2’s, they make up an imaginary mechanism that has never been measured.

    Fair enough? Shall I try to amend the Wikipedia entry on this term?

    Go ahead, make our day.

  15. #15 Ray
    June 7, 2009

    but you’ve accidentally omitted something, am I right? You meant to include coal as perhaps the most significant of the dirty fosil fuels that we must learn to live without – correct?
    Posted by: frankis | June 2, 2009 11:00 PM

    Frankis,
    The harmful combustion products of coal are mostly filtered and removed in modern coal power stations.

    Here’s a Wikipedia extract which would appear to cover most of the harmful emissions.

    Coal combustion products (CCPs) are categorized in four groups, each based on physical and chemical forms derived from coal combustion methods and emission controls:

    Fly ash is captured after coal combustion by filters (bag houses), electrostatic precipitators and other air pollution control devices. It comprises 60 percent of all coal combustion waste (labeled here as coal combustion products); is most commonly used as a high-performance substitute for portland cement or as clinker for portland cement production. Cements blended with fly ash are becoming more common. Building material applications range from grouts and masonry products to cellular concrete and roofing tiles. Many asphaltic concrete pavements contain fly ash. Geotechnical applications include soil stabilization, road base, structural fill, embankments and mine reclamation.

    Fly ash also serves as filler in wood and plastic products, paints and metal castings.

    Flue gas desulfurization (FGD) materials are produced by chemical “scrubber” emission control systems that remove sulfur and oxides from power plant flue gas streams. FGD comprises 24 percent of all coal combustion waste. Residues vary, but the most common are FGD gypsum (or “synthetic” gypsum) and spray dryer absorbents. FGD gypsum is used in almost thirty percent of the gypsum panel products manufactured in the U.S. It is also used in agricultural applications to treat undesirable soil conditions and to improve crop performance. Other FGD materials are used in mining and land reclamation activities.

    Bottom ash and boiler slag can be used as a raw feed for manufacturing portland cement clinker, as well as for skid control on icy roads. The two materials comprise 12 and 4 percent of coal combustion waste respectively. These materials are also suitable for geotechnical applications such as structural fills and land reclamation. The physical characteristics of bottom ash and boiler slag lend themselves as replacements for aggregate in flowable fill and in concrete masonry products. Boiler slag is also used for roofing granules and as blasting grit.

    The majority of CCPs are landfilled, placed in mine shafts or stored on site at coal fired power plants. About 43 percent of CCPs were recycled for “beneficial uses,” in 2008, according to the American Coal Ash Association. [1] . The chief benefit of recycling is to stabilize the environmental harmful components of the CCPs such as arsenic, beryllium, boron, cadmium, chromium, chromium VI, cobalt, lead, manganese, mercury, molybdenum,selenium, strontium, thallium, and vanadium, along with dioxins and PAH compounds.

    There’s no mention of Carbon Dioxide here. But of course, CO2 is not toxic. Plants thrive on it.

  16. #16 Ray
    June 7, 2009

    Fair enough? Shall I try to amend the Wikipedia entry on this term?

    Go ahead, make our day.
    Posted by: Chris O’Neill | June 3, 2009 1:18 AM

    Chris,

    I didn’t realise you are a Clint Eastwood fan.

    Can I suggest that you might make a good defendant lawyer. “Your honour, the defendant may have broken the intention and spirit of the law, but not the letter of the law”.

  17. #18 Ray
    June 7, 2009

    417
    Ray, you might have heard of the coal ash accident last year?
    or here
    Posted by: sod | June 7, 2009 8:29 AM

    Accidents always happen. We should examine why and try to avoid a repitition.

    Knee jerk reactions should be avoided.

  18. #19 Chris O'Neill
    June 7, 2009
    Fair enough? Shall I try to amend the Wikipedia entry on this term?

    Go ahead, make our day. Posted by: Chris O’Neill | June 3, 2009 1:18 AM

    Ray:

    Chris,
    I didn’t realise you are a Clint Eastwood fan.

    I didn’t realize you were either.

    Can I suggest that you might make a good defendant lawyer.

    Can I suggest that you might make a good defendant lawyer. “Your honour, the defendant may have broken the letter of the law, but not the intention and spirit of the law”.

  19. #20 Ray
    June 9, 2009

    I don’t have any strong objection to the AGW movement to reduce CO2 emissions. They may be doing it for the wrong reason, but so what.

    Religions exert their control through vivid descriptions of heaven and hell. Misbehave and you’re likely to spend eternity in the equivalent of an American-sponsored torture cell.

    We need to develop clean and renewable energy sources for economic and health reasons.

    If the best way to to this is to create a scare about anthropogenic global warming, in order to get people motivated, then so be it.

  20. #21 Chris O'Neill
    June 9, 2009

    If the best way to to this is to create a scare about anthropogenic global warming, in order to get people motivated, then so be it.

    Disingenuous.

  21. #22 luminous beauty
    June 9, 2009

    There’s no mention of Carbon Dioxide here. But of course, CO2 is not toxic. Plants thrive on it.

    Wrap a securely air tight plastic bag around your head and neck for about 15 minutes, and then get back to us about how non-toxic CO2 is.

  22. #23 Ray
    June 9, 2009

    Wrap a securely air tight plastic bag around your head and neck for about 15 minutes, and then get back to us about how non-toxic CO2 is.
    Posted by: luminous beauty | June 9, 2009 11:29 AM

    Just goes to show how little you understand. If you wrap a plastic bag around your neck, you’ll be starved of oxygen. Nothing to do with CO2.

  23. #24 luminous beauty
    June 9, 2009

    Ray,

    Try the experiment with normal O2 partial pressure and the remainder CO2.

    Let us know how it goes.

  24. #25 Brian D
    June 9, 2009

    Ray, the “lack of air” / “drowning” / “need to breathe” feeling is induced NOT by low levels of oxygen (as anyone who travels to high altitudes can tell you). Rather, it’s caused by a buildup of CO2 in the blood, which we detect and perceive as that “low on air” feeling. At higher concentrations (1000ppm or more), toxic side effects do occur in people, with major health risks showing up at (if I recall correctly) around 5000 ppm.

    Furthermore, any 10-year-old farmboy can tell you that your “plants thrive on it” argument is missing a key point — adding more of one nutrient will only increase growth if that nutrient is the limiting factor. Those other limiting factors aren’t just the usual fertilizer nutrients you’d expect (nitrates, phosphates, and potassium), but also include water and light. Water is already being affected (for instance, any glacier-fed stream is increasingly likely to run dry), and light prevents massive poleward migrations of farmland (I don’t care how warm the Arctic gets, you aren’t going to have enough sunlight to farm as successfully there as you do in the Midwest).

    There was a spectacular video overview of this point, with citations, posted here not all that long ago. He does a better job explaining this than I do.

  25. #27 Ray
    June 9, 2009

    If the best way to to this is to create a scare about anthropogenic global warming, in order to get people motivated, then so be it.

    Disingenuous.

    Posted by: Chris O’Neill | June 9, 2009 9:48 AM

    I’m absolutely serious! You can’t get people to do the right thing because it’s sensible and reasonable. You have to scare them and frighten them.

    We’ve got people in Australia who have put themselves in the position of paying astronomical amounts for energy for their homes, just so they can look their kids in the eye when they are asked, ‘What did you do for the environment?’

    Some people just don’t realise when they spend an extra $60,000 on equiping their new homes with solar voltaic cells on the roof, that that $60,000 (plus any government subsidies) represents an embedded carbon foot print before they’ve even started using their so-called low-cost energy.

    If such people were a bit smarter with their economics, they would realise the true cost of their electricity is ridiculously expensive.

    We can all achieve the same, or better, results by simply throwing away, burning or destroying, 10% of our salary. Burn a few $100 dollar bills.

    There’s an irrationality going on here that verges on insanity.

  26. #28 Ray
    June 9, 2009

    Ray, the “lack of air” / “drowning” / “need to breathe” feeling is induced NOT by low levels of oxygen (as anyone who travels to high altitudes can tell you). Rather, it’s caused by a buildup of CO2 in the blood, which we detect and perceive as that “low on air” feeling. At higher concentrations (1000ppm or more), toxic side effects do occur in people, with major health risks showing up at (if I recall correctly) around 5000 ppm.
    Posted by: Brian D | June 9, 2009 1:00 PM

    This argument is silly. Even the most extreme, catastrophic and alarmist predictions of the AGW mob, do not predict that humans will suffer from a build-up of CO2 in the blood.

    The imbalance between oxygen, nitrogen and CO2 will be affected far more greatly by simply sleeping in a small room with the windows closed.

    You guys are scraping the bottom of the barrel.

  27. #29 Ray
    June 9, 2009

    Ray, the “lack of air” / “drowning” / “need to breathe” feeling is induced NOT by low levels of oxygen (as anyone who travels to high altitudes can tell you). Rather, it’s caused by a buildup of CO2 in the blood, which we detect and perceive as that “low on air” feeling. At higher concentrations (1000ppm or more), toxic side effects do occur in people, with major health risks showing up at (if I recall correctly) around 5000 ppm.
    Posted by: Brian D | June 9, 2009 1:00 PM

    This argument is silly. Even the most extreme, catastrophic and alarmist predictions of the AGW mob, do not predict that humans will suffer from a build-up of CO2 in the blood.

    The imbalance between oxygen, nitrogen and CO2 will be affected far more greatly by simply sleeping in a small room with the windows closed.

    You guys are scraping the bottom of the barrel.

  28. #30 luminous beauty
    June 9, 2009

    Some people just don’t realise when they spend an extra $60,000 on equiping their new homes with solar voltaic cells on the roof, that that $60,000 (plus any government subsidies) represents an embedded carbon foot print before they’ve even started using their so-called low-cost energy.

    Those who do realize this also realize that the EROEI of PV results in a net reduction of CO2 emissions.

    Then there are those forward looking people who realize that the progressive reduction of fossil fuel use gradually reduces and eliminates the embedded carbon costs of manufacture and transportation. Ovionics already manufactures all its thin film PV panels with PV generated power and other manufacturers are quickly following suit.

  29. #31 Ray
    June 9, 2009

    Ray, the “lack of air” / “drowning” / “need to breathe” feeling is induced NOT by low levels of oxygen (as anyone who travels to high altitudes can tell you). Rather, it’s caused by a buildup of CO2 in the blood, which we detect and perceive as that “low on air” feeling. At higher concentrations (1000ppm or more), toxic side effects do occur in people, with major health risks showing up at (if I recall correctly) around 5000 ppm.
    Posted by: Brian D | June 9, 2009 1:00 PM

    This argument is silly. Even the most extreme, catastrophic and alarmist predictions of the AGW mob, do not predict that humans will suffer from a build-up of CO2 in the blood.

    The imbalance between oxygen, nitrogen and CO2 will be affected far more greatly by simply sleeping in a small room with the windows closed.

    You guys are scraping the bottom of the barrel.

  30. #32 luminous beauty
    June 9, 2009

    You guys are scraping the bottom of the barrel.

    You made the assertion CO2 is not toxic. You were wrong. Man up to your mistake. Don’t be a Plimer.

  31. #33 Ray
    June 9, 2009

    Those who do realize this also realize that the EROEI of PV results in a net reduction of CO2 emissions.
    Posted by: luminous beauty | June 9, 2009 1:33 PM

    I believe you are mistaken. People who currently go to the expense and trouble of getting their electricity supply from photovoltaic panels, are actually increasing carbon emissions, in relation to their electricity consumption.

    A government subsidy creates an illusion that it’s not that expensive. However, all subsidies are paid by the taxpayer.

    I know people who have gone the PV route. They tend to suffer inconveniences because there’s not sufficient power to operate their fridge or microwave. They have to buy a gas-operated fridge, for example, and they suffer the inconvenience of not being able to have too many appliances in operation at the same time.

    They end up using far less electricity than they did before, thus raising the question if they were to use the same amount of electricity from the grid, would they and the environment not be better off.

    I have a friend who is very proud of his solar water heater. He holds his head high because he thinks he’s doing the right thing for the climate. Unfortunately, he lives alone and the cost, including installation and maintenance, of the solar heater, makes his hot water ridiculously expensive.

    If you want to do the best for the environment, use an instant hot water heater. I use such a heater. I calculated, using current electricity costs, that taking one shower a day, every day of the year, costs just $12 per person per year.

  32. #34 Ray
    June 9, 2009

    You guys are scraping the bottom of the barrel.
    You made the assertion CO2 is not toxic. You were wrong. Man up to your mistake. Don’t be a Plimer.

    Posted by: luminous beauty | June 9, 2009 1:38 PM

    As I said. You’re being silly. Everything is toxic in sufficiently large doses, including oxygen.

    If you eat too many apple seeds, like a cup-full, you will likely die.

    There’s no scenario from the AGW crowd, however exaggerated, that claims that humans will suffer from CO2 toxicity as a result of AGW.

  33. #35 luminous beauty
    June 9, 2009

    Ray,

    I know people who have gone the PV route. They tend to suffer inconveniences because there’s not sufficient power to operate their fridge or microwave.

    You know what a grid inter-tie is?

    A government subsidy creates an illusion that it’s not that expensive. However, all subsidies are paid by the taxpayer.

    You might find this ironic, perhaps not. Here in California, all our renewable ‘subsidies’ come in the form of tax credits. One might then think the resulting revenue shortfalls would be an additional burden to the average taxpayer. Here’s the ironic part. The additional primary and secondary increases in local economic activity created by manufacture, installation and maintenance of renewables increases revenues, at existing tax rates, larger than the original subsidies investment.

    The consumers receive substantial savings; and the bankers, the manufacturers, the installers, the utilities and the government all stand to gain.

    Ain’t well-regulated capitalism great?

  34. #36 luminous beauty
    June 9, 2009

    There’s no scenario from the AGW crowd, however exaggerated, that claims that humans will suffer from CO2 toxicity as a result of AGW.

    Consider that human toxicity begins at about 1000ppm.

    Consider that the likelihood of suffering toxic affects from CO2 in a stuffy room since the beginning of the Industrial Revolution has increased by {([1000 - 280] – [1000 - 385]) / (1000 – 280)} x 100 ≈ 14.6%

    Consider 2xCO2 represents 560ppm; 3xCO2 = 840ppm; 4xCO2 = 1120ppm

    Consider.

  35. #37 Mark Byrne
    June 9, 2009

    Ray:

    A government subsidy creates an illusion that it’s not that expensive. However, all subsidies are paid by the taxpayer.

    The externalities of coal creates an illusion that it’s not that expensive. However, all externalities are paid by the by everyone (disproportionately by the most vulnerable. The benefits are not shared equally (less going to the most vulnerable). Part of this perversity could be efficiently addressed by internalising the costs of damage.

  36. #38 Chris O'Neill
    June 10, 2009
    If the best way to to this is to create a scare about anthropogenic global warming, in order to get people motivated, then so be it.

    Disingenuous.

    Posted by: Chris O’Neill | June 9, 2009 9:48 AM

    Ray:

    I’m absolutely serious!

    OK, serious and disingenuous. Dishonest too.

    You can’t get people to do the right thing because it’s sensible and reasonable.

    Sure, just tell them what you think is a lie. I’m sure they’ll react kindly when they find out your attitude. Thanks for letting us know the sort of world you inhabit Ray.

  37. #39 Ray
    June 10, 2009

    Sure, just tell them what you think is a lie. I’m sure they’ll react kindly when they find out your attitude. Thanks for letting us know the sort of world you inhabit Ray.
    Posted by: Chris O’Neill | June 10, 2009 12:26 AM

    I’m not telling any lies. What on earth gave you that idea?

    I’ve already stated my opinion that the case for AGW is not proven and therefore I would not be recommending that anyone who might be struggling to make a living burden themselves with more expensive electricity costs through the installation of solar voltaic panels.

    Nevertheless, development of cheap, clean and affordable renewable energy sources is a desirable thing for economic and health reasons, irrespective of any AGW that may or may not occur as a result of our current emissions.

    We should not lose sight of the fact that everyone’s economic prosperity is ultimately tied to the cost of energy.

  38. #40 Gaz
    June 10, 2009

    Ray, you say “I’ve already stated my opinion that the case for AGW is not proven..”

    OK, Ray, I’ve asked people with your point of view this question several times and never once got a straight answer.

    What, for you, would constitute “proof”.

    Can you imagine a hypothetical situation where someone produces “proof”?

    What would it look like? What *could* it look like?

    What data, analysis, evidence, or whatever, would it take to be what you’d call “proof”?

  39. #41 Chris O'Neill
    June 10, 2009
    Sure, just tell them what you think is a lie. I’m sure they’ll react kindly when they find out your attitude. Thanks for letting us know the sort of world you inhabit Ray. Posted by: Chris O’Neill | June 10, 2009 12:26 AM

    I’m not telling any lies. What on earth gave you that idea?

    So when you say:

    Religions exert their control through vivid descriptions of heaven and hell. Misbehave and you’re likely to spend eternity in the equivalent of an American-sponsored torture cell.

    If the best way to to this is to create a scare about anthropogenic global warming,

    i.e. “scare” implying dishonesty

    in order to get people motivated, then so be it

    ; you’re not implying that you think scaring people with AGW is telling people something you think is not true? Sure Ray, sure.

  40. #42 Ray
    June 10, 2009

    OK, Ray, I’ve asked people with your point of view this question several times and never once got a straight answer.

    What, for you, would constitute “proof”.

    Can you imagine a hypothetical situation where someone produces “proof”?

    What would it look like? What could it look like?
    What data, analysis, evidence, or whatever, would it take to be what you’d call “proof”?
    Posted by: Gaz | June 10, 2009 2:09 AM

    You’ve hit the nail on the head. There doesn’t appear to be any way to demonstrate empirically the extent to which anthropogenic emissions may conribute to global warming.

    The time scales are simply too great. The frequency and severity of individual events in the past, droughts, cyclones and floods etc, have varied from decade to decade, and from century to century, with and without man-made emissions.

    A trend of increasing temperatures or greater frequency of storms observed over one 10 year period, or century, may reverse over the next 10 year period, or century.

    We’re definitely running out of oil, though. The high price is an indication of that. It should be ‘full steam ahead’ to develop a practical and affordable electric car. I don’t know why we are so slow about this.

  41. #43 MAB
    June 10, 2009

    That’s right Ray,
    get on with it quickly. What are you waiting for?

  42. #44 luminous beauty
    June 10, 2009

    You’ve hit the nail on the head. There doesn’t appear to be any way to demonstrate empirically the extent to which anthropogenic emissions may conribute to global warming.

    It is an empirical fact that global surface temperatures have risen by ≈0.75C in the last century.

    It is an empirical fact that CO2 is a greenhouse gas.

    It is an empirical fact that CO2 has increased by ≈40% from human activity since ≈1750.

    No other known forcing can explain the warming.

    Not enough empirical proof?

  43. #45 t_p_hamilton
    June 10, 2009

    lb:”It is an empirical fact that global surface temperatures have risen by ≈0.75C in the last century.

    It is an empirical fact that CO2 is a greenhouse gas.

    It is an empirical fact that CO2 has increased by ≈40% from human activity since ≈1750.

    No other known forcing can explain the warming.

    Not enough empirical proof? ”

    Not to somebody who clearly does not value understanding. All the studies explain why, but that means nothing to the Rays of this world. They just repeat their opinions based on ignorance. Ray was completely UNABLE to answer what kind of evidence studies would convince him that global warming was really occurring. In essence his reply was that nothing would serve as evidence, even if it reached intolerable levels by 2100, because it “could always go back” (after all temperature always goes up and down, right?)

    Thanks you Ray for serving as such a great example of the denialist mindset. Keep posting!

  44. #46 luminous beauty
    June 10, 2009

    Journal of Personality and Social Psychology
    1999, Vol. 77, No. 6. ] 121-1134

    Unskilled and Unaware of It: How Difficulties in Recognizing One’s Own
    Incompetence Lead to Inflated Self-Assessments

    Justin Kruger and David Dunning

    Cornell University

    People tend to hold overly favorable views of their abilities in many social and intellectual domains. The
    authors suggest that this overestimation occurs, in part, because people who are unskilled in these
    domains suffer a dual burden: Not only do these people reach erroneous conclusions and make
    unfortunate choices, but their incompetence robs them of the metacognitive ability to realize it. Across 4
    studies, the authors found that participants scoring in the bottom quartile on tests of humor, grammar, and
    logic grossly overestimated their test performance and ability. Although their test scores put them in the
    12th percentile, they estimated themselves to be in the 62nd. Several analyses linked this miscalibration
    to deficits in metacognitive skill, or the capacity to distinguish accuracy from error. Paradoxically,
    improving the skills of participants, and thus increasing their metacognitive competence, helped them
    recognize the limitations of their abilities.

    Ray, and his ‘can’t see the forest for the trees’ comrades, are convinced that the imprecision/error/uncertainty of these empirical measures means they must then necessarily be inaccurate. This is the confusion.

    What makes climate denial different is that these cleopatras are being willfully ignorant. They are bound into a clique where advocacy for the views shared by the clique is the primary cognitive focus. Scientific objectivity be damned.

  45. #47 Ray
    June 10, 2009

    ..you’re not implying that you think scaring people with AGW is telling people something you think is not true? Sure Ray, sure.
    Posted by: Chris O’Neill | June 10, 2009 4:48 AM

    Chris,

    You raise an interesting point. I would say that dishonesty is not the best word here. Deception and manipulation would be more appropriate. Dishonesty would apply when you are certain that something is not true, but claim that it is true (or vice versa). For example, if one’s company is totally insolvent and one knows one should be applying for bankruptcy, but instead one continues to take money from people knowing that there’s virtually no chance of being able to deliver the goods, then that’s dishonesty.

    A good example of the type of deception and manipulation which is rife in politics, would be the build-up to the war in Iraq and the issue of ‘weapons of mass destruction’.

    It’s now clear that, before the war began, the intelligence reports on this matter were not conclusive by any means. There was considerable doubt as to whether Saddam Hussein already had, or was in the process of developing, nuclear and/or chemical and biological weapons.

    Is the suppression of intelligence reports which made such doubts explicit, or the removal of sentences and phrases in reports which refer to the doubtful nature of the evidence, being dishonest?

    It’s now clear that the Bush administration saw the possibility of the existence of ‘weapons of mass destruction’ as a good scare tactic to persuade the American public and allies that such a war could be justified.

    This was a clear case of the ‘ends justifying the means’. It’s is doubtful that the war would have got off the ground without that scare scenario created through deception and manipulation of the truth.

    It’s often said that the first casuality of war is truth.

    I see a clear analogy between the manipulation of public opinion that took place during the build-up to the Iraqi war, and the manipulation that is currently taking place with regard to AGW. But I stress that the analogy extends only to the manipulation that took place during the build-up period. I’m not, I stress not, claiming that an attempt to control climate is analgous to the actual war in Iraq, just for the benefit of those who wish to make such a ludicrous connection in a “Shorter Ray”.

    It seems to me that it is the application of the ‘scientific method’ that offers us the best chance of getting at the truth. You can’t trust any theory or prediction (especially computer modeling predictions) that can’t be tested empirically. Many of the ancient Greek philosophers, including Plato and Aristotle, thought that our vision worked on the principle of the eye emitting a beam of light in order to illuminate the object being looked at. They were not certain about this of course. I believe Aristotle expressed some doubts about the eye’s capacity to emit a beam to the distant stars.

    Unfortunately, the principles of the scientific method had not been discovered (or ennunciated, thought of) in those days. The uncertainty persisted for several centuries until a 10th century Muslim mathematician by the name Ibn al-Haitham (who was born in what is currently Iraq, incidentally) discovered through the application of experimentation that we are able to see because the eye receives reflected light, not because it emitts its own light.

    With the benefit of hindsight and even a sketchy understanding of the scientific method, it’s easy to see how those early Greek philosophers could have tested their theory that we see because our eyes shine a light in the direction of our gaze. All they had to do was enter a completely dark room (or as dark as they could make it), one by one until the room was full of people, crammed like sardines, and observe whether or not the room became even a little less dark as it filled with people.

  46. #48 MAB
    June 10, 2009

    Shorter Ray:
    I’ve got nothing to say about climate change, and no examples about deception in AGW, so itstead I’ll talk about Iraq and pretend that makes my point.

  47. #49 Gaz
    June 11, 2009

    Ray: “You can’t trust any theory or prediction (especially computer modeling predictions) that can’t be tested empirically.”

    OK, Ray, let’s say for the sake of argument that you have an hypothesis that human emissions of various greenhouse gases are causing significant warming of the Earth’s surface.

    And let’s say, for the sake of argument, that your hypothesis is in fact correct.

    However, given the complexity of the atmosphere/ocean system, your hypothesis can only be used to generate predictions in the form of the output of models calculated using computers.

    What empirical test might be appropriate to test your hypothesis?

  48. #50 Ray
    June 11, 2009

    Ray: “You can’t trust any theory or prediction (especially computer modeling predictions) that can’t be tested empirically.”

    OK, Ray, let’s say for the sake of argument that you have an hypothesis that human emissions of various greenhouse gases are causing significant warming of the Earth’s surface.
    And let’s say, for the sake of argument, that your hypothesis is in fact correct.

    However, given the complexity of the atmosphere/ocean system, your hypothesis can only be used to generate predictions in the form of the output of models calculated using computers.
    What empirical test might be appropriate to test your hypothesis?
    Posted by: Gaz | June 11, 2009 12:20 AM

    I’m not aware of any emprical test that can conclusively determine the significance of the anthropogenic role in climate change. As is often the case with science, one simply has to make an assessment from all the data that is available, including historical data and data from other disciplines that are directly and indirectly related.

    The 90% certainty, often quoted from the IPCC reports, is not a scientific 90% but a subjective assessment from the data, that may be influenced by ‘God knows what’.

    It’s true that one can be certain, through empirical evidence, that CO2 is a greenhouse gas. But it’s far too simplistic to deduce that any increase in CO2 is therefore going to cause a warming with disastrous consequences.

    There are many greenhouse gases. An increase in one might result in a reduction of another. For example, water vapour is a very significant greenhouse gas.

    It seems there are highly qualified climatologist (or meteorologists) who publish their views on the internet, opposing the AGW conclusions and certainty. It would be reasonable to presume there are many more climatologist who sympathise with the skeptical viewpoint, but who would be fearful of expressing their views on the internet in case their reputation and employment prospects were adversely affected.

    One climatologist who is bold enough to express his views publicly, is Roy Spencer.

    Here are his credentials, copied from his website.

    Roy W. Spencer received his Ph.D. in meteorology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1981. Before becoming a Principal Research Scientist at the University of Alabama in Huntsville in 2001, he was a Senior Scientist for Climate Studies at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center, where he and Dr. John Christy received NASA’s Exceptional Scientific Achievement Medal for their global temperature monitoring work with satellites. Dr. Spencer’s work with NASA continues as the U.S. Science Team leader for the Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer flying on NASA’s Aqua satellite. He has provided congressional testimony several times on the subject of global warming.
    Dr. Spencer’s research has been entirely supported by U.S. government agencies: NASA, NOAA, and DOE. He has never been asked by any oil company to perform any kind of service. Not even Exxon-Mobil.

    I believe the following pdf is a ‘peer reviewed’ publication by Roy Spencer. He has a Ph.D in meteorology and works with NASA. He seems qualified to comment on climate issues and his arguments make sense to me. I certainly hope I am not subjecting him to ‘ad hominem’ attacks by my making a reference to his views on this blog.

    http://www.drroyspencer.com/Spencer-and-Braswell-08.pdf

    To get to the gist of this publication, with increases in CO2 in the atmosphere there’s a major distinction to be made between ‘negative feedback’ and ‘positive feedback’.

    The IPCC, according to Roy Spencer, ignores the possibility of negative feedback. Why, I don’t really know, but I suspect it’s all part of the manipulative process.

    You can check out his simplified explanation of this process, for the layman, at his site: http://www.drroyspencer.com/

    If I can simplify it even further, the fundamental idea in his ‘peer reviewed’ paper is that increases in CO2 can cause either warming or cooling depending on the cloud cover that indirectly results from such increases in CO2.

    The IPCC would claim that an increase in CO2 will cause a slight warming which will in turn cause a reduction in cloud cover over the planet. This represents positive feedback. The reduction in cloud production, resulting from the slight warming from CO2, lets in more sunlight and produces even more warming.

    Now that’s quite reasonable and logical, isn’t it? More heat gets in, because of the reduced cloud cover, and less heat gets out because of the increased CO2 which acts like a blanket. We’re in deep trouble.

    But let’s look at the ‘negative’ feedback scenario. What happens if the slight warming produced by anthropogenic emissions produces an increase in cloud cover. Is this not a possibility? Increases in heat produce greater evaporation of water from the sea and lakes etc.

    Where is the empirical evidence that increased evaporation will not result in increased cloud cover? Increased cloud cover will reduce the amount of heat (from the sun) reaching our precious planet. As a consequence there may actually be a slight cooling as a result of increases in CO2.

  49. #51 sod
    June 11, 2009

    Why, I don’t really know, but I suspect it’s all part of the manipulative process.

    the manipulative process by the Bush government to fake global warming?

    a very convincing theory…

  50. #52 MAB
    June 11, 2009

    Ray @450

    But it’s far too simplistic to deduce that any increase in CO2 is therefore going to cause a warming with disastrous consequences.

    Argument by false representation: Ray you ought not misrepresents the science with such fallacious argument.

  51. #53 MAB
    June 11, 2009

    Ray @ 450

    The IPCC, according to Roy Spencer, ignores the possibility of negative feedback. Why, I don’t really know, but I suspect it’s all part of the manipulative process.

    Or maybe the Spenser is not telling the whole story? Perhaps the IPCC allow for a wide margin of [negative forcing from clouds?]( http://www.greenfacts.org/en/climate-change-ar4/figtableboxes/figure-2.htm
    )

    Perhaps Spencer has not told the whole [story before?]( http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2008/05/how-to-cook-a-graph-in-three-easy-lessons/
    )

  52. #54 MAB
    June 11, 2009

    But if Spencer was dodgy (like Plimer) wouldn’t there be some brave sole [on the internet]( http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2005/08/tcs5.php
    ) prepared to expose the sophistry? Someone not afraid to speak out against the PR strategists, the billionaire fossil interest, and their [useful idiots?]( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Useful_idiot)

  53. #55 Ray
    June 11, 2009

    But if Spencer was dodgy (like Plimer) wouldn’t there be some brave sole on the internet prepared to expose the sophistry? Someone not afraid to speak out against the PR strategists, the billionaire fossil interest, and their useful idiots?
    Posted by: MAB | June 11, 2009 7:22 AM

    Yes! Me!

  54. #56 MAB
    June 11, 2009

    And you did it will Ray.

    Good job.

  55. #57 Bernard J.
    June 11, 2009

    It’s now clear that, before the war began, the intelligence reports on this matter were not conclusive by any means. There was considerable doubt as to whether Saddam Hussein already had, or was in the process of developing, nuclear and/or chemical and biological weapons. [emphasis mine]

    I call bullshit.

    I took a modicum of care to listen to reports and interviews provided by our mainstream stalwart, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, and it was easily apparent to anyone with even an average intelligence that not only “before the war began, the intelligence reports on this matter were not conclusive by any means”, it was clear then that the ‘reports’ were in fact completely bogus.

    Similarly, for any half-thinking person, there was no doubt that Saddam had none of the WMDs that were claimed to be in his possession. Scott Ritter, Andrew Wilkie and others spent much time carefully explaining where the “intelligence reports” were wrong, or misrepresented, in order to whip up support for an illegal war.

    It was for these very reasons that I joined hundreds of thousands of other ‘ordinary Australians’ in the streets of Sydney to protest our country’s involvement in a war that to this day would have been better averted, and the underlying circumstances addressed by other means.

    It’s now clear that the Bush administration saw the possibility of the existence of ‘weapons of mass destruction’ as a good scare tactic to persuade the American public and allies that such a war could be justified.

    No, it was clear to me, and to millions of others, before the war that Bush and his allies were using a scare tactic for justification of the war.

    Those who can only see this in hindsight are either slow on the uptake (and thus shouldn’t have any position of responsibility that requires critical thinking), or are denying the facts of the matter. If you couldn’t see the obvious truth before the war and don’t believe that others could, just check the transcripts for interviews and reports in the year before the invasion.

    Nice try in rewriting history Ray, but it won’t fly. The internet has too good a memory. Just as it does, and will have in the future, with the antics of climate change denialists.

  56. #58 luminous beauty
    June 11, 2009

    Ray,

    The IPCC, according to Roy Spencer, ignores the possibility of negative feedback.

    No, the IPCC ignores fairy-tales. That is what Spencer’s ‘internal forcing’ is.

    —–

    It is an empirical fact that global surface temperatures have risen by ≈0.75C in the last century.

    It is an empirical fact that CO2 is a greenhouse gas.

    It is an empirical fact that CO2 has increased by ≈40% from human activity since ≈1750.

    No other known forcing can explain the warming.

    Not enough empirical proof?

  57. #60 Ray
    June 11, 2009

    I took a modicum of care to listen to reports and interviews provided by our mainstream stalwart, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, and it was easily apparent to anyone with even an average intelligence that not only “before the war began, the intelligence reports on this matter were not conclusive by any means”, it was clear then that the ‘reports’ were in fact completely bogus.

    Similarly, for any half-thinking person, there was no doubt that Saddam had none of the WMDs that were claimed to be in his possession. Scott Ritter, Andrew Wilkie and others spent much time carefully explaining where the “intelligence reports” were wrong, or misrepresented, in order to whip up support for an illegal war.
    Posted by: Bernard J. | June 11, 2009 8:41 AM

    It was also apparent to me. I have American friends in Australia. I remember asking, what happens when America invades Iraq and they find there are no weapons of mass destruction?

    I knew there was a strong likelihood that those weapons did not exist, as most intelligent people did.

    What’s your point?

    My point is, that there was an attempt to manipulate public opinion to the effect that there actually were weapons of mass destruction.

    What percentage of the population believed that, is another matter, but it would appear that a large percentage did.

  58. #61 Ray
    June 11, 2009

    I took a modicum of care to listen to reports and interviews provided by our mainstream stalwart, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, and it was easily apparent to anyone with even an average intelligence that not only “before the war began, the intelligence reports on this matter were not conclusive by any means”, it was clear then that the ‘reports’ were in fact completely bogus.

    Similarly, for any half-thinking person, there was no doubt that Saddam had none of the WMDs that were claimed to be in his possession. Scott Ritter, Andrew Wilkie and others spent much time carefully explaining where the “intelligence reports” were wrong, or misrepresented, in order to whip up support for an illegal war.
    Posted by: Bernard J. | June 11, 2009 8:41 AM

    It was also apparent to me. I have American friends in Australia. I remember asking, what happens when America invades Iraq and they find there are no weapons of mass destruction?

    I knew there was a strong likelihood that those weapons did not exist, as most intelligent people did.

    What’s your point?

    My point is, that there was an attempt to manipulate public opinion to the effect that there actually were weapons of mass destruction.

    What percentage of the population believed that, is another matter, but it would appear that a large percentage did.

  59. #62 MAB
    June 11, 2009

    Now Ray,

    List off all those who supported Bush and his war. Then list off all those who are funding AGW denialsits and their agents. Then cross reference.

  60. #63 Ray
    June 12, 2009

    Or maybe the Spenser is not telling the whole story? Perhaps the IPCC allow for a wide margin of negative forcing from clouds?

    Perhaps Spencer has not told the whole story before?
    Posted by: MAB | June 11, 2009 7:14 AM

    Exactly! Now you’ve got it. Well done!

    No-one is telling the whole story. Our knowledge about ,em>anything is always partial. There’s always far more that we don’t know than what we do know.

  61. #64 Gaz
    June 12, 2009

    “There’s always far more that we don’t know than what we do know.”

    Yes, Ray, especially if Spencer is your source.

  62. #65 Ray
    June 13, 2009

    “There’s always far more that we don’t know than what we do know.”

    Yes, Ray, especially if Spencer is your source.
    Posted by: Gaz | June 12, 2009 8:42 PM

    Spencer is only one source. Our total knowledge of the forces that affect climate change, including all the climatologists who have contributed to the IPCC reports, and including all the skeptics amongst those who have and have not contributed to the IPCC reports, is not adequate, in my view.

    Climatology is a relatively new science and the subject matter is chaotic.

    What surprises me is that anyone could seriously believe that we have the political will to significantly influence the climate of our planet, even if the IPCC panel have got it right, which is doubtful.

    We’ve got no control over wars, illicit drug use, poverty, and all the really big issues that repeat themselves century after century.

    The problems and catastrophe’s of genocide and the casualities of war inflicted upon humanity during the 20th century far exceed any problems of increasing CO2.

    What sort of foolish optimism would cause people to think we’ve got even the remotest chance of getting sufficient world-wide political co-operation and agreement to actually have a worthwhile effect on global climate when we have been unable to even stop a couple of small tribes (the Palestinians and Jews)from blowing each other up, as well as two world wars, the Vietnam war, Bosnia, Iraq, Afghanistan, etc, to mention just a few.

    We can’t stop people smoking and injecting dope, and gangsters making huge profits from its supply, but we can control global climate by getting everyone to agree to reduce CO2 emissions!!!

    This idea doesn’t sound quite right to me, but I can understand why the need to exaggerate the consequences of AGW are deemed to be necessary if we are to have even the remotest chance of getting a movement off the ground to reduce CO2.

    I can understand why some scientists claim it is already too late. The damage has been done and we’ll just have to reap the consequences.

    What worries me, is that the climatologist and the people implementing climate control policies will end up in the position of Nero, “Fiddling whilst Rome burns”.

    To put it another way; “Fools rush in where angels fear to tread.”

    I’m the angel here, fuguratively.

  63. #66 MAB
    June 13, 2009

    What sort of foolish optimism would cause people to think we’ve got even the remotest chance of getting sufficient world-wide political co-operation and agreement to actually have a worthwhile effect on global climate

    Steady your self Ray, The prize is worth it. Are you going to die on your knees whining about what we cannot do? Or are you going to go down making what difference you can. The later being the only prescription that has every succeeded.

  64. #67 sod
    June 13, 2009

    What worries me, is that the climatologist and the people implementing climate control policies will end up in the position of Nero, “Fiddling whilst Rome burns”.

    an analogy that might need some additional explanation…

  65. #68 Ray
    June 13, 2009

    What worries me, is that the climatologist and the people implementing climate control policies will end up in the position of Nero, “Fiddling whilst Rome burns”.

    an analogy that might need some additional explanation…
    Posted by: sod | June 13, 2009 4:46 AM

    There are more than sufficient real and certain problems that need our attention.

    It’s certain and undeniable that resources are limited. We simply don’t have sufficient resources (either in terms of human skills or energy supplies) to tackle all current problems. There has to be some prioritisation.

    Money (ie. resources) spent on CO2 reduction is money that is not spent on developing an AIDS vaccine, not spent on reducing poverty in Africa, not spent in finding a solution to the Palestinian/Jewish problem, not spent on solving the illicit drug problem by recognising it as a medical problem rather than a criminal problem, etc, etc, etc.

  66. #69 Bernard J.
    June 14, 2009

    Ray.

    There are many political/cultural options available that could achieve the ends you list, without recourse to great expenditures of money.

    HIV/AIDS is extremely difficult to ‘cure’ the traditional way used for viruses, but it is relatively easy and cheap to avoid with appropriate education, and with the will to deliver it to people who could benefit from such education.

    Reducing poverty in Africa, whilst certainly benefiting from aid money, is also significantly a matter of politics and of economic democracy.

    The Palestinian/Jewish problem, and the ‘war’ on drugs, are both matters of political/cultural advancement, and are not simply solved by throwing money at them.

    AGW too is in part an issue of political and cultural will. Whilst it does require money to be invested in order to bring new technologies into use, the costs compare favourably with those of the Irag II war, or the global bailings out of non-viable companies/businesses, and our society has borne those without the sky falling down.

    Over the span of a generation or more in the near future, the costs of not addressing the looming issue of climate change with see all other problems facing humanity pale by comparison, and they will be costs confronted by the currently comfortable First World, as well as by the disadvantaged Third World.

  67. #70 Ray
    June 14, 2009

    Over the span of a generation or more in the near future, the costs of not addressing the looming issue of climate change with see all other problems facing humanity pale by comparison, and they will be costs confronted by the currently comfortable First World, as well as by the disadvantaged Third World.
    Posted by: Bernard J. | June 14, 2009 12:31 PM

    Bernard,

    That is the message I’m questioning.

    There’s already a wide variety of different climates on the planet, ranging from icy cold Alaska, to the tropical rainforests of Amazonia, to the arid and hot deserts of the Sahara and the Australian interior.

    As climate changes, and it always does whatever we do, some areas will inevitably gradually change for the better (from our perspective) and other areas for the worse.

    This year and last year in Australia, we’ve had a number of major floods.

    Alternating droughts and floods are a typical climate pattern in Australia that goes back thousands of years, but every time we have a major drought, flood or fire that seems more severe than most living people can remember, lots of people tend to think that these events are a result of AGW and that we’d better take climate change seriously and begin reducing our CO2 emissions, a process which unfortunately seems to inevitably result in increased energy costs for everyone. Electricity costs in Brisbane have recently risen by 15%.

    If one is living in a climate which is prone to alternating droughts and floods, I think it is sensible to build ‘flood mitigation dams’ sufficiently large to contain even larger floods than any previous floods on record, and build a network of large-diameter water pipes to take excess water from one region to another region where water is scarce.

    Of course, if you can tackle both problems, and build dams and 2 metre diameter water pipes using clean energy from windmills and solar power, then that’s fine.

    If we can’t tackle both problems simultaneously, then I think it far more sensible to tackle the real and urgent problems right now, rather than put those on hold so we can tackle a more speculative and uncertain problem, the dimensions of which we simply don’t know.

    Imagine, in 50 years’ times, when the worst flood in 50 years hits Ingham, and the waters are 2 metres high flowing through the streets, and the people complain that the government should have built a few flood mitigation dams years ago, you can tell them (if you are still alive), “Look, you guys! Be grateful that the government spent the money tackling climate change. If they hadn’t, these floods in your town might now be 3 metres deep instead of 2.” Yeah! Sure!

    AGW too is in part an issue of political and cultural will. Whilst it does require money to be invested in order to bring new technologies into use, the costs compare favourably with those of the Iraq II war, or the global bailings out of non-viable companies/businesses, and our society has borne those without the sky falling down.Posted by: Bernard J. | June 14, 2009 12:31 PM

    The Iraqi war is a war fought on borrowed money, and has significantly contributed to the current economic crisis. Economically the sky has been falling in for a while now, for many people. We are not out of the woods yet. We just seem to be weathering this downturn in Australia, so far, better than most, at least partly because we started this recession with a substantial government surplus.

  68. #71 MAB
    June 14, 2009

    Ray,

    AGW diminishes our capacity to reduce all other problems. Not only that, but AGW promotes multitude of other problems.

    Many of the problems you select as being important have a similar root to AGW- that is we have failed to count a lot of what really counts.

    As climate changes, and it always does whatever we do, some areas will inevitably gradually change for the better (from our perspective) and other areas for the worse.

    From who’s perspective Ray? Care to quantify the improvements and costs? What factors are you including and excluding?

    Given that this issue has been addressed in the IPCC WG2, I’m thinking that you are using this as an excuse to rationalise not doing anything.

    By the way, how about you get on with raising money for AIDS research, reducing poverty in Africa (where AGW will disproptionately cause more harm), or solving the Israel-Palestine violence?

  69. #72 Gaz
    June 15, 2009

    *”..lots of people tend to think that these events are a result of AGW and that we’d better take climate change seriously and begin reducing our CO2 emissions, a process which unfortunately seems to inevitably result in increased energy costs for everyone. Electricity costs in Brisbane have recently risen by 15%.”*

    So, Ray, let’s get this straight – you believe measures to reduces CO2 emissions have caused electricity prices to rise. It wouldn’t have anything to do with [this](http://www.indexmundi.com/commodities/?commodity=coal-australian&months=60) or [this](http://www.ausstats.abs.gov.au/ausstats/meisubs.nsf/0/2A78ECA080AA4C8ACA2575BB001A3D7B/$File/63450_mar%202009.pdf), would it?

  70. #73 Ray
    June 15, 2009

    So, Ray, let’s get this straight – you believe measures to reduces CO2 emissions have caused electricity prices to rise. It wouldn’t have anything to do with this or this, would it?
    Posted by: Gaz | June 15, 2009 5:01 AM

    No! The Carbon Trading Bill hasn’t been passed yet. When or if it comes into effect, there’ll be a much bigger increase than 15%.

    My contention is, any real increases in energy costs (over and above the inflation level) simply means we can do less, whatever it is we do.

  71. #74 Ray
    June 15, 2009

    AGW diminishes our capacity to reduce all other problems.
    Posted by: MAB | June 14, 2009 10:40 PM

    So will measures to combat AGW diminish our cpacity to reduce all other problems, if it results in a substantial increase in energy costs.

    If we can combat AGW, whether it’s a real problem or not, without substantially raising energy costs, I’m all in favour of doing so. There are health benefits flowing from cleaner energy, and in the long term we’ll simply run out of oil and coal, so alternative fuels have to be found eventually. I’d prefer atomic fusion, but the develoment of that that still seems a long way off.

    From who’s perspective Ray? Care to quantify the improvements and costs? What factors are you including and excluding?

    From the perspective of the people struggling to survive in a particular location, of course. You’re not suggesting that all locations on the planet will become equally less habitable as a result of climate change, are you?

    During the Medieval Warming period, the Vikings were able to inhabit the southern shores of Greenland and grow vegetables. If the climate had continued warming, instead of cooling during the Little Ice Age, they’d probably still be there, assuming they’d been able to resist invasions by others seeking their green pastures.

  72. #75 MAB
    June 15, 2009

    Ray 474

    So will measures to combat AGW diminish our cpacity to reduce all other problems, if it results in a substantial increase in energy costs.

    According to the the most comprehensive assessments (Stern and Garnaut, the cost of mitigation are many time lower than the costs of continued AGW.

    From the perspective of the people struggling to survive in a particular location, of course.

    Which people will be disadvantage and for how long? And which people will be advantaged and for how long?

  73. #76 Ray
    June 15, 2009

    According to the the most comprehensive assessments (Stern and Garnaut, the cost of mitigation are many time lower than the costs of continued AGW.
    Posted by: MAB | June 15, 2009 9:19 AM

    That’s more a statement of faith than of science. Combine the unpredicatibility of climate change consequences with the unpredictability of politics, human greed and religious fundamentalism, and anything can happen.

    Which people will be disadvantaged and for how long? And which people will be advantaged and for how long?
    Posted by: MAB | June 15, 2009 9:19 AM

    You can see the difficulty of answering such a question. Bad news is good news, especially when it comes to climate scaremongering.

    It’s far more effective to spread the message that the inhabitants of a particular island will have to leave their home when sea levels rise, than it is to raise the possibility that the inhabitants of a particular arid region adjoining some desert will for the first time in living memory experience decent rainfall.

    AGW skeptics would not of course even attempt to predict winners and losers.

  74. #77 Dan L.
    June 15, 2009

    >>MAB: According to the the most comprehensive assessments (Stern and Garnaut, the cost of mitigation are many time lower than the costs of continued AGW.

    >Ray: That’s more a statement of faith than of science.

    Handwaving noted.

  75. #78 Ray
    June 15, 2009

    Handwaving noted.
    Posted by: Dan L. | June 15, 2009 6:44 PM

    I’d rather an honest handwave than a pile of convoluted science that pretends to be precise.

  76. #79 MAB
    June 15, 2009

    Ray: That’s more a statement of faith than of science.

    Its the best estimate. Put this in a risk assessment.

    Ray, you are claiming specific benefits but avoiding the specifics detail. We have detailed estimates of the likely impacts on specific regions. So I ask you again, Which people will be disadvantage and for how long? And which people will be advantaged and for how long?

    Both the regions, peoples, and duration are relevant to the argument you are constructing for inaction.

  77. #80 Dan L.
    June 15, 2009

    >Ray: I’d rather an honest handwave than a pile of convoluted science that pretends to be precise.

    An honest handwave? Wow, I believe you’ve created the oxymoron of the month!

    Is there a prize?

  78. #81 Bernard J.
    June 16, 2009

    Ray.

    I am very curious to hear your answers to MAB’s questions at #475, repeated at #479.

    You see, the information/data to answer these questions are already available. Just as interesting would be to hear your responses to the questons in the context of all the species that compose the biosphere…

    You made some pretty hard statements about the benefits of AGW. Show us how you have balanced your assessment of the benefits against the negative impacts that have been recognised, or anticipated, to date.

    Oh, and Tim L, is it possible to shift this nonsense to another thread? Ray has already consumed far too much of the focus of this one as it is.

    Perhaps you could call it ‘The science is missing from Ray’s “Heaven on earth”‘…

  79. #82 Ray
    June 16, 2009

    Its the best estimate. Put this in a risk assessment.
    Ray, you are claiming specific benefits but avoiding the specifics detail. We have detailed estimates of the likely impacts on specific regions. So I ask you again, Which people will be disadvantage and for how long? And which people will be advantaged and for how long?
    Both the regions, peoples, and duration are relevant to the argument you are constructing for inaction.
    Posted by: MAB | June 15, 2009 10:22 PM

    I simply don’t believe it.

    From an Australian perspective, let me put it this way. Australia has always been prone to four types of major climatic disasters, as far back as records go. Fire, floods, droughts and cyclones. These recurring disasters have little or nothing to do with anthropogenic CO2 emissions. The fire of “Black Thursday” in 1851 raged over an area of around 5 million hectares, about 10x the area of the the latest fire this year in Victoria which got lots of people questioning whether the fire was a result of climate change.

    A century earlier (around 1770) when Captain James Cook and Joseph Banks visited Australia, they had this to say:

    “For the whole length of coast which we sailed along there was a sameness to be observed … Barren it may justly be called and in a very high degree … so barren [it] could not be supposed to yield much towards the support of man”.

    The crew was forced to replenish freshwater supplies from standing pools rather than from flowing streams. Banks recognised that Australia was a land of extremes: on a number of occasions he noted erosion that could only have resulted from dramatic floods. “[The country] was most destitute of fresh water, probably that was the reason why so few inhabitants were seen: it seemed to be subject to a severe rainy season, so at least we judged by the deep gullies which we saw had been plainly washed down from the hills of a small height”.

    Geological records, as I understand (no citation I’m afraid), indicate that Australia has been getting slowly drier and more drought-prone, on balance, for the past 20,000 years. It will probably continue to get drier. Do you think that reducing anthropogenic CO2 emissions will change this?

    The latest drought, which has probably now ended, until the next one, was sometimes alarmingly described as the worst drought in 1,000 years. If you can believe that, it means that over 1,000 years ago in Australia, when there were no significant anthropogenic CO2 emissions from industrialisation anywhere on the planet, there was an even worse drought.

    In fact, the worst drought since meteorological records were kept is still probably the Federation Drought of 1895 to 1903, although, during the past 20,000 years there have most likely been even worse droughts, perhaps far worse.

    So let’s discuss risk management. Australia is the driest continent on the planet. That’s no secret. So how have we managed our scarce water resources in the past?

    We’ve sunk bores into the Great Artesian Basin and allowed the water to flow 24 hours a day whether we need it or not.

    We’ve allowed rain water from millions of suburban roofs to flow down drains into creeks and rivers and into the sea.

    As a result of the recent drought (the worst in a thousand years, if you believe it) we’re beginning to get a bit smarter. We’re now requiring new houses to be built with a water tank installed and the water tank connected to the laundry and toilet. We’re also encouraging farmers to cap their artesian bores.

    If you have, say, 200 billion dollars to spend on climate risk management, do you spend it on ‘pie in the sky’ reductions in CO2 emissions, hoping without certainty, that the Australian climatic characteristics of alternating droughts and floods will remain the same; or do you spend that 200 billion on sound, definite, practical measures that will manage our normally fluctuating climate, with a safety margin built in to cover greater extremes than we’ve experience to date?

    I’m very much in favour of the latter approach.

    Here’s my recipe for risk management of climate change in Australia.

    (1) All houses in fire-prone areas should be cleared of trees in close proximity to the house. The house should be built from fire resistant materials. Those who insist on having trees close to the house, should build a fire-proof shelter.

    (2) All areas of the country that are periodically prone to severe flooding should have large, ‘flood-mitigation’ dams built and the entire country shoulld be connected with a system of ‘large diameter’ water pipes.

    (3) All areas affected by cyclones, or likely to be affected by cyclones if the climate changes, should be built accordingly to resist such cyclones. I’ll add that I was a resident of Darwin when the city was flattened by Cyclone Tracy. I was on holiday at the time, but I’m familiar with the scenario. A lot of the damage that occurred was not only because many suburban houses were not built sturdily enough according to the then current building code, but because many houses were substandard in accordance to the then current building code. Cyclone Tracy was not the worst cyclone in history in terms of wind speed.

    (4) Since Australia is the driest continent, water needs to be preserved for the inevitable drought periods. That involves avoiding water wastage; collecting all sources of water; reprocessing waste water; piping water from where it’s plentiful to where it’s scarce; building de-salination plants; towing ice-bergs from the Antarctic; constructing refrigeration windmills that condense water vapour from the atmosphere; etc etc.

    We can be inventive here. Trying to control our changing climate by reducing our CO2 emissions is a fool’s game.

  80. #83 Ray
    June 16, 2009

    An honest handwave? Wow, I believe you’ve created the oxymoron of the month!
    Is there a prize?
    Posted by: Dan L. | June 15, 2009 10:34 PM

    I’m afraid not. No prize for either best oxymoron or most honest reply.

  81. #84 MAB
    June 16, 2009

    Ray:

    “I simply don’t believe it.”

    Well Ray, there is no arguing with that logic.

    I note that after three requests you have declined to address the question of, for who, and for how long – people will be advantaged vs. disadvantaged by AGW.

    I suggest we leave Ray to him self. He seem to be a time waster.

  82. #85 Ray
    June 16, 2009

    I note that after three requests you have declined to address the question of, for who, and for how long – people will be advantaged vs. disadvantaged by AGW.
    I suggest we leave Ray to him self. He seem to be a time waster.
    Posted by: MAB | June 16, 2009 9:17 AM

    You seem to have failed to grasp the entire point of the skeptical argument, and that is that no-one knows the answers to the questions you are asking. Those who claim to know are guessing. Climate skeptics simply don’t believe such guesstimates. Didn’t you realise that?

    To start arguing whether the temperature in one particular part of the planet is going to rise by 0.5 degrees, or 1 degree or 2 degrees in the next 50 years or 100 years, or fall by 1 degree in another part; and then attempt to dissect what those figures would be if we had a 20% reduction in CO2 emissions, or a 25%, 30%, 50% or even 80% reduction, really is a time-wasting exercise.

    I shall not be wasting my time, however. On my rural residential property I have 2 large water tanks and am planning for another 2. I don’t waste any water at all. All black water and grey water is processed through an HSTP and sprinkled on the garden.

    My garden plants, mostly fruit trees, are covered with at least 30cm of mulch around the base to reduce evaporation from the soil. I also have bore water in addition to the local town water supply from the local dam, and my house is positioned on a slope where it will not be affected by flooding.

    Some trees are yet to be cleared from close proximity to my house, but I’m working on it.

    These are some of the practical measures that I’ve put in place to protect myself from unfavourable climatic conditions, and I’m quite at ease with this sensible and practical approach.

  83. #86 george kimball
    June 26, 2009

    Believers in GW appear not to understand that theirs is the uphill battle. To say Plimer has not disproven GW is to fail to understand that the burden of proof in science is on the claimant, not the critic. If one advances a hypothesis and supports it with a chain of reasoning, one broken link means the whole thing is unproven – back to the drawing board to fix it, if possible. With the broken link, it has no more significance than any of a million other unproven hypotheses.

  84. #87 Chris O'Neill
    June 26, 2009

    george kimball:

    If one advances a hypothesis and supports it with a chain of reasoning, one broken link means the whole thing is unproven

    So why, pray tell, does Plimer spend hundreds of pages not pointing out this one broken link when that is all he needs to do?

  85. #88 Gaz
    June 27, 2009

    We can be inventive here. Trying to control our changing climate by reducing our CO2 emissions is a fool’s game.

    Ray, I think a bit of your post got cut off – the bit where you said we could cool the climate if we all turned on our air conditioners at the same time.

  86. #89 Black Eagle
    June 27, 2009

    All CO2 Deniers should be fired from jobs, put into concentration camps, with tattoes on their arms, forced to do hard labor until confessing their crimes before tribunals composed of serious comrades as who have commented so thoroughly on this website. Yes, let’s not mess around anymore. The agenda of our Glorious Leader is clear, and we must obey without questioning. Real Science does not tolerate debate or dissent. Only “Junk Science” wastes time with discussion or experiment. WE, who know more than others, must not hesitate to DO WHAT IS NECESSARY to silence our opposition! Together with all our comrades in the Skeptics Societies, we can do more dirty-tricks, more smear-attacks, more misrepresentations of these miscreants and deviants. They must be re-educated, and not allowed to spread confusion among the masses with such propaganda as in “books”, which should be banned and burned. We Know Better! Let US be heard! And THEM destroyed, utterly!

  87. #90 Black Eagle
    June 27, 2009

    OK, my last post was a bit flip, but it is well deserved. The CO2 fundamentalists are very happy so long as the debate is isolated to such nearly meaningless forums as on internet. The fact is, dissenting opinion has been largely barred and censored from mainstream news media discussions for years, and from some science journals as well. So the only avenue open to the dissenter is, going to the public directly. As a PhD in climate science myself (no, I won’t use my real name, because experience shows I only get private hate-mail from this gang of CO2 thugs) it is stunning to me how this whole thing has played out. Censorship. Dirty tricks. Smears. Alliances with the worst of the “skeptic groups” who have in some cases hammered unorthodox scientists in their pathetic magazines to the point they were fired from jobs, driven to desperation, heart attack (J. Benveniste) or even suicide (M. Gauquelin). This kind of conduct has no place in the sciences, but only the CO2 advocates have swam in the cesspool of accusatory slander. Not one has objected to Al Gore or many other journalist smears of their opposition, as being similar to “Holocaust Deniers”, nor to bad-mouth curses from other Stalinist politicians calling them “traitors” — really unhinged behavior, all from the side of the CO2 fundamentalists. It is indeed a “new religion”. I just tried to order Plimer’s book and it is not available as yet. How many have vented their spleen against the man on this webpage, but not yet read the book? Some boast about it, about not having read the book, as if that is something to be proud about, rather than ashamed of, given the critical nature of their own comments. The lessons of the persecution of Galileo have been forgotten by the arrogant mainstreamers — and I don’t compare Plimer to Galileo by any measure. But I do compare his critics with the critics of Galileo. I fear, if they had power, Plimer and all other critics of CO2 theory would be fired, at minimum, as in my first item above. Even the more scientifically developed criticisms seem steeped in an attitude of wanting to destroy the man, rather than merely to criticize his ideas, which certainly is not the same thing. Shame On You All!

  88. #91 bi -- IJI
    June 27, 2009

    Shorter Black Eagle:

    I’ve not read Plimer’s book, and I’ve not tried to read through the refutations of Plimer’s ‘arguments’, so I’ll just spew a long tirade about how we ‘skeptics’ are being persecuted.

  89. #92 Tim Lambert
    June 28, 2009

    Black Eagle, based on what you wrote, it isn’t hard to guess your name. You’re already on Inhofe’s list, so I don’t think posting here under your real name is going to get you more email than you already get.

    And pointing out the mistakes someone makes is not “persecution”.

  90. #93 Jemima
    June 28, 2009

    Jeepers creepers if that hysterical tirade from Turtle Dove (whatever) came from a genuine PhD in any of the sciences then I ….. well I think I should cry. Glad I’m on the sceptical, actual science side of the fence and you’re on the delusionals list, Turtle Dove. Get well soon!

  91. #94 bluegrue
    June 28, 2009

    I’ve had to look up your examples, Black Eagle. [Jacques Benveniste](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jacques_Benveniste) tried to prove homeopathy, [Michel Gauquelin](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michel_Gauquelin) tried to prove a scientific basis for astrology. Given that both examples are generally considered to be anti-science, do you really want to put the climate “skeptics” into that camp? If “prosecution” is as bad in climate science as you claim it to be, naming a few examples in this field ought to be easy for you. Please include enough information to uniquely identify the individual, e.g. using initials only is bad already: _Jerome_ Beneviste is working for ESA on Envisat and seems to be very much alive and kicking, but turns up when you search for J Beneviste + climate on scholar.google.com , much to my initial confusion.

  92. #95 Paul
    July 6, 2009

    Your graph above that purports to show climate change starts at 1850, which is the end of the “little ice age”, so warming is not surprising. What about showing the period of time since 1300, the end of the medieval warming period. The picture would be quite different.

  93. #96 luminous beauty
    July 6, 2009
  94. #97 hagar
    July 9, 2009

    Let’s look at another example relating to Amazonia. The 2007 IPCC reports says the following.

    Of the 23 global climate models employed by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in their 2007 report, 50–70% predict a substantial (above 20%) reduction of dry-season rainfall in eastern Amazonia under mid-range greenhouse gas emissions scenarios, 40% in central Amazonia and 20% in the west (Malhi et al. 2008).

    To put this another way (my interpretation), of the 23 global climate models employed, 30-50% predicted an insubstantial reduction of dry-season rainfall in Amazonia. How certain is that?

    Funny this should be mentioned. Hagar went on a viking raid and as usual got so lost that he found himself rowing up the amazon. when he pulled into to manaus for supplies and had time to drink a beer and read the paper, he noticed that the front page had a picture of a man pointing to the water level which was the second highest on record

    now that nasty C02 is melting the andes too he thought until he saw that most of the rainfall was in the basin….

  95. #98 Chris O'Neill
    July 9, 2009

    hagar:

    Let’s look at another example relating to Amazonia.

    What does this have to do with the lack of science in Plimer’s book or are you just a troll?

  96. #99 James Haughton
    July 9, 2009

    Black Eagle, there is only person in the whole debate who has seriously suggested that his opponents should be “fired from jobs, put into concentration camps, with tattoes on their arms, forced to do hard labor until confessing their crimes before tribunals composed of serious comrades”. In fact, he has proposed that they should all be executed. His name is [Lubos Motl](http://mises.org/Community/blogs/tokyotom/archive/2008/07/09/lubo-motl-3-this-lover-of-freedom-and-hater-of-irrationality-can-t-stand-discourse-and-fantasies-about-elimination.aspx) and he is a “skeptic” with a PhD who appears on Inhofe’s list.
    Perhaps if you dislike such proposals, you should examine the company you keep.

  97. #100 Mybrid Spalding
    July 11, 2009

    re: frankis
    > The invitation, if I may be so bold, is this: would anybody who’s so far been just quietly observing this thread like to say that they have been encouraged by now to think that Ray is on to something, and that the “skeptical” position is looking more scientific and less denialist/delusional/whatever? I wonder whether anybody thinks they’ve been swayed by following this thread towards the Plimer viewpoint or, simply, away from the IPCC position?

    Well, I’ll take a stab at it. I know nothing about climate change and do not consider myself a skeptic or promoter. I don’t consider myself a skeptic or promoter of the science associated with: the iPod, a 42″ flat panel TV, Blu Ray, a washing machine, automobile or the elevator that takes me up and down. None of these are impacted if I take the science involved for granted. I am a science consumer. I am a science user, a science appreciator. In this sense I consider myself the everyman. And if the good folks who brought me the delightful cell phone are warning about global warming, there it is.

    I will say this though. Conspiracies are fostered with the smallest group possible, and in secret. Global Warming science is the antithesis of this. There are thousands of scientists contributing openly to climate science who agree on this. It is not a conspiracy.

    There is another debate raging here state side which, to my way of thinking, further illustrates the everyman approach to science. That debate is health care.

    The health care industry, it appears to me, is taking advantage of people in precisely the same scientific “PT Barnum” fashion the anti-Global Warming people are claiming is happening with regards to global warming agenda. People “over trust” science oft times with health care and are getting, and willing, to pay for drugs and procedures that are simply not necessary and a waste of money. I remember specifically a report that came out a few years ago where upwards of 50% of all open heart surgeries at one time were unnecessary, but instead were performed because they were the most profitable surgery.

    The question is this, how can the everyman not trust science? Science underpins our very food, shelter, medicine, transportation and education. We are committed to it, there is no going back.

    In for a nickel, in for a dime. Or, in this case, in for a $1 trillion, in for $60 trillion. Those numbers are only possible with computers.

    Why was I reading this thread then? Again, compare health care to global warming. Health care science, if you will, is not single purposed. Every disease, every aliment, has its share of good and bad science and corresponding agendas. The science of health care is a complex web of MRI to viagra issues, each requiring distinct attention.

    Not so with global warming. The thing I find confounding about global warming is this: I would expect a complex topic like global warming to have the same face as Health care science. That is to say, a complex web of science topics and corresponding agendas. Whether MRI’s are over prescribed is independent scientifically of whether drugs are over prescribed. However, global warming seems to be as complex topic as health care, earth care, that incredibly has one simple agenda: reduce C02 emissions.

    Health care science: a myriad of topics with an equal set of myriad agendas.

    Global warming: a myriad of topics with one agenda.

    I realize Earth care involves more than just global warming, but pollution and resources. In that regard I’m kinda in Ray’s camp? But Ray never argues that Earth care should be focused exclusively on X vs Y because X is a higher priority (Y being global warming). Ray doesn’t argue that we should be focusing on X & Y, emphasis on X. Ray simply seems to be arguing that Y is not a problem. From where I sit, that’s just laughable considering science brings me so much joy and liberty, I’m not to disbelieve it? Even if science is wrong on this, so what? This is why, I think, people over pay for health care. They are willing to pay for the false science because a.) they are not qualified to distinguish the good from the bad and b.) science liberates us in so many house-hold chore ways some false science is just part of the human condition.

    To wit, I would expect Earth Care to mirror Health Care in complexity and agendas. Where I might be on the same side, as the global warming skeptics is that Global Warming seems to focus on one particular aspect of Earth Care financially and scientifically where I expect to see some balance as with Health Care. Why only focus on global warming when pollution takes on many forms? It does appear as if all other Environmental issues have been crowded out and shouted down.

    I come to these forums on occasions looking to find some Earth Care balance with respect to the amount of resources being asked of us to put on one issue. Neither Ray or any other global warming skeptic seems to care two cents about the environment from their postings. They just seem to be contrarians. My ears do perk up with the contrarians when it comes to cost/benefit of Earth care, i.e. we might be spending too much when are money can be spent better elsewhere. So far they have offered up neither the agenda or the science of said Earth Care agenda though. The anti-global warming skeptics just don’t seem to care about the environment from their writings and opinions.

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