It has to be weird – the potty peer is pushing it:

Last year’s magistral lecture to the Federation was by Professor Vaclav Klaus, then president of the Czech Republic, whose talk was entitled The manmade contribution to global warming is not a planetary emergency… This year Dr. Christopher Essex, Professor of Applied Mathematics at the University of Western Ontario and chairman of the Federation’s permanent monitoring panel on climate, gave the Federation’s closing plenary session his panel’s confirmation that “Climate change in itself is not a planetary emergency.”

Anyone vaguely up on reality will be wondering how on Earth VK or Essex ended up giving lectures on climate.

If you look back to, say, 2011 you see that things are sane – I don’t know all the folk there, but the panel has members like Mario Molina (USA); Neville Nichols (Australia); Warren Washington (USA). These are all well known folk whose views carry weight. And there’s a not-terribly-exciting statement about needing data.

Fast forward to 2012 and Essex is chair of the panel. And, err, that’s it for people on the panel. Its just Essex, all alone (so in the quote above, where Essex gave the Federation’s closing plenary session his panel’s confirmation he really wasn’t joking – it is his panel all alone-io). Suddenly the panel has no members, and no associate members, and has nothing to say. Its statements are “Being revised” – or rather, they were said to be in that state in 2012 and still are now. So Essex, having captured the panel, and either thrown everyone out (or more likely they simply wouldn’t work with him) is left with an empty toy. Perhaps the panel will try to tell us that global temperature doesn’t exist again.

Presumably it helped Essex that Zichichi is prez of the WFS. Z has the unenviable distinction of not having his wiki page edit warred over. According to that page, Bethe said of him: “excellent organizer, mediocre physicist”.


  1. #1 Russell

    Singer and his ex-presidential pay-for-play-pal Klaus have been lobbying Zichichi for decades ( four by my count ).

  2. #2 SCM

    In the 2012 meeting 3 speakers on climate issues were Monckton, Nigel Lawson and Ross McItrick. There was not a climate scientist to be seen.

  3. #3 John Mashey

    But Essex is an expert on climate, by virtue of often organziing the Nerenberg Lecture at UWO, inviting such folks as Fred SInger in 2001,
    Sallie Baliunas in 2009,
    and Viscount Monckton in 2013.

  4. #4 Dunc

    I suppose it rather depends on how you define “planetary emergency”…

  5. #5 Fragmeister

    The direct quotes Monckton gives from what Essex said reveal less an expert on climate science and more a paranoid conspiracist.

  6. #6 The Very Reverend Jebediah Hypotenuse

    John Mashey:

    Ugh. Thanks for that.
    I have degrees from UWO. I want my money back.

  7. #7 John Mashey

    By the way, “Strange Scholarship on The Wegman Report” had an early section that showed a sequence of meetings and connections that led to the WR, involving the thinktanks (CEI, GMI ) getting Essex, McKitrick and McIntyre involved.
    Myron Ebell (CEI , Cooler Heads Coalition) got McKitrick to speak in Washington on Fall 2001.

    But I always wondered how that connection happened. Why was CEI bring an obscure Canadian to Washington?

    The answer was that 2001 talk, which is an invited talk, that Essex arranges at least some of the time. The second edition of Essex and McKitrick’s Taken by Storm ~2008 added some more discussion about that talk, p.66, including:
    “Knowing Singer … was not convinced of global warming and would be presenting arguments against it, WE invited the then. -Federal environment minister…”

    So, my inference from all this is that Essex and McKitrick would have known of Singer, Essex invited him, he met them both and is always looking to recruit, along the lines of the 1998 GCSCT strategy. Voila! they started making a name for themselves In anti-science and then McIntyre hooked up with McK … And unlike Essex, he could devote full time … But Essex keeps plugging.

    Indeed, UWO grads who have opinions might want to transmit them.

  8. #8 Hank Roberts

    The Federation?
    How many starships have they got, nowadays?

  9. #9 John Mashey


    0) First, when someone unfamiliar appears, try a quick look in DeSmogBlog database, where one finds in this case Zichichi.

    1) See p.170 of PDF @ Crescendo to Climategate Cacophony (2010), which noted reference in Wegman Report to a Lindzen talk @ WFS.

    ZIchichi didn’t quite make the list of people pp.97-104, but he’s long been on my bigger list, and if he had been added to the table on p.97, we would see:

    OISM1998 (1 – wsigned)
    Manhat2008 (2, signed)
    CATO2009 (2, signed)
    HeartExp#1 (2, on list)
    Heart#Exp#3(2, on list) and he is still on Heartland Expert list.

    The CCC document has explanations and links … but hte bottom line is: Zichichi is a reliable participant.

  10. [...] 5. To top it off, a ScienceBlogs writer calls this out as a WTF moment. [...]

  11. #11 Russell

    Created at the height of the Cold War, WFS was intended as a counterweight to the Soviet thumb on the scientific scales of the sundry Federations supporting disarmament.

    Equally ironic is today’s transformation of dezinformatsia hacks like Gerasimov and Izrael into spokesmen for the Russian oiligarchy at heartland conferences and elsewhere.

  12. [...] it, Christopher Essex. 5. To top it off, a ScienceBlogs writer calls this out as a WTF moment. World Federation of Scientists (Permanent Monitoring Panel – Climatology) weirdness – St… The descent of Watts & Co into nuttery continues. Argument from Authority on Climate Change [...]

  13. #13 Russell Newsom
    North Carolina
  14. #14 Russell

    Essex ‘s oily views illustrate how, if you go far enough west in Ontario, you end up in Calgary

  15. #15 Ion A. Dowman
    New Zealand

    More than thirty years ago I made the prediction – more a prognosis – that if this planet did experience global warming, then expect colder weather. Why? For the same reason ice feels cold in your hand, or water on your skin. The ice takes energy from its surroundings (your hand) to melt, which is why it would feel much colder than, say, a steel ball at the same (0F) temperature in the other hand. Likewise water takes energy from your body to evaporate, which is why (how) it cools you down.

    Global warming means faster melting ice caps and evaporating oceans, with the consequent effect on the atmosphere, and the volatility of weather which, of course, would stretch all the way to the equator.

    So; Ice caps melt, weather becomes more volatile, the oceans themselves would become more … erm … lively.

    As for whether this is a ‘planetary emergency’ is hard to judge, since the statement has no contextual meaning. A heartless person might take the view that if life in general is likely to survive, even though the human race is doomed, then ‘planetary emergency’ is simply hyperbole.

    Or it might be a case simply of giving up. So deaf is the Establishment to all reason, then we might as well let it have its head, bring on global catastrophe the faster in order that the agony of human annihilation is by that much abbreviated.

    I mention these simply as possibilities, no more. Without further explanation I have no idea what was meant.

  16. #16 Ion A. Dowman
    New Zealand

    Very clever, very neat… I like how you did that. Making out – nothing said, of course, let the mugs infer it – the WFS as being hitherto in the main stream of scientific studies into climate as a dynamic system. This main stream has been widely warning of climate change to which humankind has added enough to push it into warmer and more volatile realms.

    This article seems to be implying – sufficiently so to make the inference very easy – that the WFS, as a ‘mainstream’ outfit – is drawing back from those claims, suggesting a ‘volte face’ by the scientific community at large.

    [No. You've misread me. I'm saying that it looks more like the WFS climate section has suffered a takeover by the septics -W]

    No. The WFS is a fringe outfit with a known history and purpose of ‘fighting against planetary emergencies’. In a ‘What’s Up With That’ blog article, the pictures of 4 leading lights of this organisation are pictured. Who are they? Two are politicians, one of whom is an economist; one is an apllied mathematician (I don’t know what field of mathematics – we would hope dynamic systems…), the fourth is the only scientist qua scientist: a nuclear physicist {of whom it has been said – ‘an excellent organiser but a mediacre physicist} – and known to be strongly Catholic. Not that I have much quarrel with that, but it does indicate something of where the dude is coming from. Not one, NOT ONE, is a climate scientist, a meteorologist or (with the possible exception of the mathematician guy) has expertise in dynamic systems.

    The credibilty of the World Federation of Scientists on the topic of climate change? Zero.