The scene opens in 1988 on a steamy day in Washington D.C. at hearings hosted by former senator-turned-eco-evangelist Al Gore. The day was selected and carefully staged on the basis of hottest summer records in the city.
As Gore’s Senate colleague character Timothy Wirth later tells a PBS interviewer, “We called the weather bureau and found out what historically was the hottest day of the summer. . . . so we scheduled the hearing that day, and bingo, it was the hottest day on record in Washington, or close to it . . . we went in the night before and opened all the windows so that the air conditioning wasn’t working inside the room.”
There could be no doubt that the recent summer heat was exceptional. Only about a decade earlier, three decades of cooling had led leading scientists and news agencies to trumpet an opposite concern. (Movie screen pans to the 1975 March cover of Science News depicted Manhattan being swallowed by an approaching glacier with a bold headline announcing “The Ice Age Cometh.”)
The hearing’s foregone conclusion regarding the cause for this sudden and dramatic climate change reversal launches its star witness to instant fame. James Hansen, who then heads NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies, testifies, “Global warming has reached a level such that we can ascribe a high degree of confidence of cause and effect relationship between the [human] greenhouse effect and the observed warming.”
(Screen pans again to a June 30, 1989 Associated Press article headlined: “U.N. Official Predicts Disaster: Says Greenhouse Effect Could Wipe Some Nations Off Map.”)
But now, only about a decade later, the world and its polar bears face a new, even greater, crisis . . . a looming overheated Armageddon which the U.N. wastes no time blaming upon capitalistic excesses.
Their solution is to institute an international carbon “cap-and-trade” agreement — a Kyoto Protocol — which penalizes developed countries by forcing them to purchase CO2 emission credits from less developed countries. China and India, which emit huge and growing amounts of CO2, are given get-out-of-jail-free passes due to their developing country status.
Kyoto timing provides a dream opportunity for one particularly influential company.
During the early 1990s, Enron is diversifying its energy business to emphasize natural gas, a fuel that is facing difficult market competition with coal, a larger CO2 emitter. The company, already heavily leveraged, owns the largest natural gas pipeline that exists outside Russia . . . a colossal interstate network.
U.S. participation in Kyoto will create carbon-capping advantages which will dramatically tip the energy market playing field in Enron’s favor.
Pursuing enthusiastic help in Washington, Enron’s boss Ken Lay begins collaborating with now-Vice President Gore and his former Senate operative Timothy Wirth who is now undersecretary of state for global affairs in the Clinton-Gore administration. Together, they prepare a White House strategy to lobby Congress for Kyoto ratification.
Enron’s Kyoto lobbying efforts don’t end there. Between 1994 and 1996, the Enron Foundation finances an aggressive and successful global warming fear campaign which includes hostile attacks on scientific dissenters.
As an internal Enron memorandum states, Kyoto will “do more to promote Enron’s business than almost any other regulatory initiative outside the restructuring [of] the energy and natural gas industries in Europe and the United States.”
Flashing forward, after leaving the White House, now green hedge fund entrepreneur Gore and his partner David Blood, the former chief of Goldman Sachs Asset Management, take big stakes in the Chicago Climate Exchange. CCX is poised to make windfall profits selling CO2 trading offsets if the U.S. adopts cap-and-trade legislation.
Speaking before a 2007 Joint House Hearing of the Energy Science Committee, lobbiest Gore tells members, “As soon as carbon has a price, you’re going to see a wave [of investment] in it . . . There will be unchained investment.”
As a surprise ending to my movie finally reveals, this turns out to be the same snake oil tycoon who rakes in hundreds of $millions cashing in on man-made climate fright . . . the same greenhouse gasser who sells his Current TV cable network to Al Jazeera owned by the emir of oil-rich Qatar . . . the same hypocrite whose Nashville home annually consumes more than 20 times more electricity than the average American Household . . . and even the same sanctimonious jerk who has just released a “An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power” thriller to his earlier conveniently alarmist film.
Al’s buddy Timothy Wirth then goes on to serve as U.N. Foundation president, and later on its board. James Hansen finally retires from NASA after being arrested four times for noncompliance with police orders during green activist demonstrations. Ken Lay dies in his Aspen vacation home while facing prison following Enron’s titanic bankruptcy.
And meanwhile, satellites show no statistical global warming over nearly the past two decades.
Yeah, you’re probably right. Few would likely take such a fantastically implausible script seriously.
Larry Bell is an endowed professor of space architecture at the University of Houston where he founded the Sasakawa International Center for Space Architecture (SICSA) and the graduate program in space architecture. He is the author of “Scared Witless: Prophets and Profits of Climate Doom” (2015) and “Climate of Corruption: Politics and Power Behind the Global Warming Hoax” (2012).
By Joseph D’Aleo
Peter Lanzillo, host of Pete’s Corner on Hudson NH cable offered me and a team of scientists an opportunity to present an alternative view on the so called ‘consensus science’ that has driven policies that have devastated Europe’s economies and started our region and country on the same path.
Michael Crichton (pictured), Biology degree then MD from Harvard, taught at MIT, Cambridge (UK), did research at the Salk Institute before becoming a writer, playwright, lecturer wrote about consensus:
“Historically the claim of consensus has been the first refuge of scoundrels; it is a way to avoid debate by claiming the matter is already settled.”
“Let’s be clear: the work of science has nothing whatever to do with consensus. Consensus is the business of politics. In science, consensus is irrelevant. What is relevant is reproducible results. The greatest scientists in history are great precisely because they broke with the consensus. (Galileo, Newton, Einstein, etc)”
Science has been politicized. The politicization of science is the manipulation of science for political gain. It occurs when government, business, or advocacy groups use legal or economic pressure to influence the findings of scientific research or the way it is disseminated, reported or interpreted. The global warming hoax may be the biggest example of the politicization of science in the history of man. It continues in the universities, the media and the next few weeks unfortunately in the theatres.
What you may never have heard it, the UK courts required all schools that showed the first Al Gore movie, had to distribute a list of the 9 most major egregious errors. A judge ruled that the “apocalyptic vision” presented in the film was politically partisan and thus not an impartial scientific analysis of climate change. It is, he ruled, a “political film”. In the next story and cable show we will outline all the exaggerations and falsehoods in the sequel. Gore predicted in the 2007 movie, that we had 10 years to save the planet, that sea levels would rise and flood places like New York City. Sea levels have risen less than 1 inch at the Battery since 2007.
But Al uses Sandy’s storm surge in the sequel to say he was right. Much stronger hurricanes in the past have come ashore in NYC – like the category 3 storm in 1821 with similar storm surges, but back then there were no subways or tunnels to flood and the city had a population of just 155,000 compared to over 8.2 million today.
Also, the number of polar bears, a movie icon, have increased to record highest population levels.
THE WINDS OF CHANGE
Peter, I and the very capable production team at Hudson Cable have produced so far 7 shows. They can be viewed here
Part 1: CO2 the ‘Demon Gas’ showed how the demonized CO2 is a trace gas, just 0.04% of our atmosphere. We showed evidence how it has little effect on temperatures but instead is a highly beneficial gas. It is a plant fertilizer that has greatly greened the planet and increase crop yields 3 to 5 fold. CO2 combines with water, nutrients and sunlight to grow plants through photosynthesis. We pump CO2 into greenhouses. As for it being a harmful pollutant, every breath you take emits 100 times more CO2 than the air you took in.
Part II: Taking the Earths Temperatures showed the many issues in attempting to assess what is happening globally. 75% of the global stations were dropped after 1990, up to 90% of the remaining stations have missing months each year, a large percentage of the stations are now not properly sited. Oceans cover 71% of the globe and full accurate global coverage was not achieved until 2004. Dodgy models are used to adjust temperatures. Yet we claim we can assess global temperatures to hundredths of degrees.
Part III: In Weather Extremes, we (guest Michael Sununu and I) showed though after Hurricane Katrina in 2004, scientists (and Al Gore) predicted devastating storms would be a yearly certainty. Yet since 2005, we have this week surpassed a record 4300 days without a major hurricane making landfall in the U.S..
The annual number of strong tornadoes are decreasing. There is no change in flood or drought frequency. Sea level rise globally has slowed to a 4 inch/century rate while models and the movie suggested changes in meters. Polar ice is just going through normal cyclical changes.
Part IV: In the Natural and Man-made Causes of Climate Change, we show how El Nino and La Nina cause warming and cooling and how decadal ocean basin cycles lead to a tendency for one or the other to dominate and lead to decadal temperature trends. We looked at the sun, which the climate models ignore and show how solar cycles and the different solar outputs affect the climate and likely drive land and ocean temperature cycles. Volcanoes have a very strong affect but it tends to be shorter term. Man’s primary influence is through land use changes most specifically urbanization.
Part V: We looked at the energy story. Return guest Michael Sununu and I joined Peter to discuss the energy story. We showed how we here in New Hampshire and the northeast pay, along with California, the highest electricity prices in the nation because of bad policies and how the Paris Accord would devastate our nation’s economy and hurt the poor and middle class and those on fixed incomes the most.
Part VI: We had a NASA Expert on sea level, Tom Wysmuller who confirmed the slowing of sea level rise and the beneficial nature of CO2 and Part VII a college professor Dr. Larry Gould who talked about how the schools and the media are indoctrinating our young and the public to support harmful and unnecessary policies.
Although, alarmists could not attack the solid science or our rigorous statistical analyses, they argued for all to dismiss the works because they did not pass through their controlled peer review process. But our review was more rigorous and our reviewers even shared their names as well as their endorsement.
See how we followed the scientific method properly unlike most well paid researchers in science and medicine and how their peer review is failing with serious consequences here.
No doubt you’ve heard Rush Limbaugh’s occasional rants about the issue of man-made climate change. It’s a hoax, he says, complaining that the science isn’t based on actual data but on computer models. Well, I’d like to address that point. In my view, climate scientists can’t help but employ computer models because the phenomenon they’re attempting to simulate doesn’t exist in reality. In other words, these models are the scientific equivalent of digitally generated Unicorns.
Given the dire warnings we hear about overheating the Earth with greenhouse gases, we ought to step back a moment and ask, what is heat? Is it some kind of entity, like a pile of leaves on the lawn? No, heat is more like a verb than a noun; it is an action that occurs due to a temperature difference. Heat is that which heats, i.e., raises a material body’s temperature. Broadly speaking, this action is accomplished by vibration. In conductive heat transfer, quickly vibrating molecules excite slower neighbors, thus raising their temperature. By the same token, as molecules vibrate faster they emit more light and at higher frequencies, and this too – radiative heat transfer – is a means of heating something that’s radiating less vigorously.
It shouldn’t need saying that heat always transfers from more to less. That is, a conductive donor cannot make the recipient’s temperature higher than its own, nor can a radiative donor make the recipient radiate more than the donor is supplying. Otherwise, this would constitute the creation of thermal energy ex nihilo, violating the law of energy conservation. This law basically states that you can never squeeze more energy out of less; you can only break even.
Being imaginary, however, a Unicorn is exempt from the conservation law, as shown by The National Center for Atmospheric Research diagram below.
Here, please note, the Earth’s surface and atmosphere together are seen to gain a total of 239 watts per square meter from the Sun (the rest is reflected) and ultimately to release that 239 to outer space. Yet here the Earth’s surface is also seen to discharge 396 watts per square meter due to a shroud of “Greenhouse Gases” constantly blasting a radiant power of 333 downward. (NASA’s version of events is much the same.)
But how can you gain 239 and lose 239 and still have 333 left over? Ask a Unicorn.
Bear in mind that the term “watts per square meter” denotes a rate of energy outlay, one Watt being equal to 1 Joule per second, which is not a pile of leaves. In this sense, wattage is akin to rates like miles per hour or gallons per minute. So if you still can’t see the Unicorn hiding in the NCAR diagram, perhaps this visual aid will help.
The National Center’s energy model depicts a similarly unfeasible rate of flow. As much radiant energy (light) continuously exits to space as continuously enters… while some kind of insulating/radiating gas layer is continuously cranking out 139% more radiant energy, the conservation law be damned.
What you might call a Proof Of Absurdity lies in the simple fact that no one has been able to put this reputed radiative mechanism to use. For consider, if less than 1% of our leaky atmosphere’s gases can generate 139% more radiant energy than the Sun provides, a far greater surplus could be generated simply by replacing an open volume of gas with sealed panels and thick insulation. Why, the resultant oven could theoretically roast a turkey with a double-A battery!
But such a radiative enhancement mechanism has not and never can be replicated. It’s physically impossible.
This is not to say, however, that scientists haven’t tried to prove that so-called “greenhouse gases” reduce radiant heat loss by — umm, radiating. On the premise that CO2 and other gases have a way of trapping heat, a team from Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory exhaustively tested the insulative impact of several infrared-absorbing gases as fillers for double-pane windows. Please read the report yourself, but I will cut to the chase: They found that infrared emission from these gases “adversely affects the window performance” and, in particular, that “the infrared radiation properties of CO2 is unnoticeable.” My emphasis.
Bottom line, although misnamed “greenhouse gases” absorb and emit thermal radiation, they cannot make the Earth’s surface radiate more energy than the Sun supplies. That the Earth’s surface temperature is higher than assumptions have led certain people to predict is attributable to their faulty assumptions, not to a few trace gases.
Rush Limbaugh is right. His instincts are sound. There’s many a fanciful Unicorn lurking inside this “settled science,” which is why its forecasts keep failing.
Biography – Alan Siddons
A former radiochemist for Yankee Atomic Electric Company and similar sites in the United States, Siddons found himself out of work at one point and in 2007 decided to learn a bit about the Greenhouse Effect so that he could speak somewhat knowledgeably if ever the subject came up in conversation. Little did he know at the time what a nightmare journey he was embarking on.
By Joseph D’Aleo, CCM, AMS Fellow
THE SCIENTIFIC METHOD
The scientific method in science is an iterative process. The scientific method starts with a theory or hypothesis. The data needed to test it and all possible factors involved are identified and gathered. The data is processed and the results rigorously tested. The data and methods are made available for independent replication. Reviewers for the proposed theory must have the requisite skills in the topic and in the proper statistical analysis of the data to judge its validity. If it passes the tests and replication efforts, a conclusion is made and the theory may be turned into a paper for publication. If it fails the tests, the hypothesis or theory must be rethought or modified.
It should noted a refutation of a previously accepted theory even one that has been published and widely accepted can follow the same route to review and publication as Albert Einstein observed:
The peer review process is failing due to political and economic pressures that have altered the scientific method to virtually ensure a politically correct or economically fruitful theory can never fail.
When the tests fail, instead of rethinking the theory or including other factors, there is an alarming tendency to modify input data to more closely fit the theory or models.
Also often, the authors and reviewers do not to have the proper understanding of all the factors involved and often the needed mathematical skills to properly evaluate the results. And even if they do, the input data and methods are generally not made available to the reviewers for replication. And in many cases, forecasts are made for many decades or even centuries into the future, so true validation is not possible, a luxury those of us who must forecast in shorter time frames (days to seasons) do not enjoy.
Also too often, the reviewers that then serve as final gatekeepers are often not only not fully capable of this kind of rigorous review, they are often biased and speed politically correct or economically beneficial work to publication while blocking or at least ‘slow walking’ work that challenges the so-called consensus science or their own often ideologically driven beliefs.
As Dr. Michael Crichton wrote “Let’s be clear: the work of science has nothing whatever to do with consensus. Consensus is the business of politics. In science, consensus is irrelevant. What is relevant is reproducible results. The greatest scientists in history are great precisely because they broke with the consensus. (Galileo, Newton, Einstein, etc)”
SCIENTIFIC METHOD FAILURE IN THE CLIMATE SCIENCES
So when greenhouse climate models fail, they don’t revisit the theory but instead try and find the right data to fit that model. All data today is adjusted with models with a goal of addressing data errors, changes in location or instrumentation or changing distribution or filling in for missing data or station closures. Once you start this adjustment process, there is always the risk to adjust the find ways to mine from the data the desired results.
With the climate models there is an increasingly large divergence with balloon, satellite and surface reanalysis data sets the last 20 years. The one model that follows the temperature is a Russian model that has roughly half the greenhouse forcing and improved ocean modeling.
John Christy 2017 has shown models without greenhouse warming agreed perfectly with atmospheric (tropical) observations.
This kind of refutation should, if scientists abided by the scientific method, spark an effort to revisit the theory but that is too politically incorrect. This kind of ideologically or politically or economically driven thinking is pervasive across the sciences (atmospheric and medical).
EVIDENCE THAT TRADITIONAL PEER REVIEW IS FAILING
This story in Forbes by Henry Miller says “A number of empirical studies show that 80-90% of the claims coming from supposedly scientific studies in major journals fail to replicate”.
Another recent paper in Nature showed 70% of the papers in medical journals had studies that could not be replicated, many not even by the original authors. See also this example of one such falsified report that the author worries is a part of an epidemic of agenda-driven science by press release and falsification that has reached crisis proportions.
Other reports show an alarming number of papers having to be retracted. Springer is retracting 107 papers from one journal after discovering they had been accepted with fake peer reviews (here).
Result-oriented corruption of peer review in climate science was proven by the Climategate emails.
In the journals, there are a small set of gatekeepers that block anything that goes against the editorial biases of the journals. Conversely, these journals and their reviewers do not provide a thorough due diligence review of those that they tend to agree with ideologically. They are engaged in orthodoxy enforcement.
Indeed, Henry Miller wrote: “Another worrisome trend is the increasing publication of the results of flawed ‘advocacy research’ that is actually designed to give a false result that provides propaganda value for activists and can be cited long after the findings have been discredited.”
A prime example of this is the hideously flawed but endlessly repeated “97% of climate scientists” paper by Cook and Lewandowski. EPA’s own Inspector General found that EPA’s Endangerment Finding was never properly reviewed, yet it is the basis of all EPA GHG regulations that imposed hundreds of billions in costs on the U.S. economy.
The scientific method requires the data used be made available and the work must be capable of being replicated. This should be required of all journals (in virtually all cases, as shown above, it is not). Peer review has become pal review with gatekeepers that prevent alternate unbiased data analyses and presentation but rush new papers that support their ideology or view on the science.
Our team chose to apply the same research report procedures used in industry, which is to assemble the most qualified authors with the skills required to compile the data and rigorously perform the correct analysis. They draft a report and share the draft with a team of experts chosen for their expertise in this field to provide feedback. In our research reports, we identify the reviewers, who have lent their names to the conclusion, and provide full access to the data for others to work with and either refute or replicate, with and instructions on the analytical methods used.
Almost no journals require that and their failure and rejection numbers speak for themselves.
Wegman suggested one of the common failures in climate papers is the lack of necessary statistical expertise. For our research reports we assembled the highest qualified data experts, econometricians/statisticians and meteorologists/climatologists to draft the research project, do the rigorous statistical/econometric analyses, and then submitted their work to the best qualified scientists/econometricians for review. Attempts to discredit this report are now of course being made because it raises critically important questions about the quality and trustworthiness of the global surface temperature data sets.
The facts and statistical reasoning of this paper cannot be refuted merely by carping peer review. Instead, demonstration of a factual or mathematical error is required.
The scientific method must be reestablished. Bad science, bad medicine, bad economics lead to bad policies. Bad policies hurt good people
Late last year, I gave a talk about human progress to an audience of college students in Ottawa, Canada. I went through the usual multitude of indicators – rising life expectancy, literacy and per capita incomes; declining infant mortality, malnutrition and cancer death rates – to show that the world was becoming a much better place for an ever growing share of its population.
It seemed to me that the audience was genuinely delighted to hear some good news for a change. I had won them over to the cause of rational optimism. And then someone in the audience asked about climate change and I blew it.
While acknowledging that the available data suggests a “lukewarming” trend in global temperatures, I cautioned against excessive alarmism. Available resources, I said, should be spent on adaptation to climate change, not on preventing changes in global temperature – a task that I, along with many others, consider to be both ruinously expensive and, largely, futile. The audience was at first shocked – I reckon they considered me a rational and data-savvy academic up to that point – and then became angry and, during a breakout session, hostile. I even noticed one of the students scratching out five, the highest mark a speaker could get on an evaluation form, and replacing it with one. I suppose I should be glad he did not mark me down to zero.
My Ottawa audience was in no way exceptional. Very often, when speaking to audiences in Europe and North America about the improving state of the world, people acknowledge the positive trends, but worry that, as Matt Ridley puts it, “this happy interlude [in human history will come] to a terrible end.” Of course, apocalyptic writings are as old as humanity itself. The Bible, for example, contains the story of the Great Flood, in which God “destroyed all living things which were on the face of the ground: both man and cattle, creeping thing and bird of the air”.
The Akkadian poem of Gilgamesh similarly contains a myth of angry gods flooding the Earth, while an apocalyptic deluge plays a prominent part in the Hindu Dharmasastra. And then there is Al Gore. In his 2006 film An Inconvenient Truth, Gore warns that “if Greenland broke up and melted, or if half of Greenland and half of West Antarctica broke up and melted, this is what would happen to the sea level in Florida”, before an animation shows much of the state underwater. Gore also shows animations of San Francisco, Holland, Beijing, Shanghai, Calcutta and Manhattan drowning. “But this is what would happen to Manhattan, they can measure this precisely,” Gore says as he shows much of the city underwater,
It is possible, I suppose, that our eschatological obsessions are innate. The latest research suggests that our species, Homo Sapiens Sapiens, is 300,000 years old. For most of our existence, life was, to quote Thomas Hobbes, “solitary, poor, nasty, brutish and short.” Our life expectancy was between 25 years and 30 years, and our incomes were stuck at a subsistence level for millennia. Conversely, our experience with relative abundance is, at most, two centuries old. That amounts to 0.07 per cent of our time on Earth. Is there any wonder that we are prone to be pessimistic?
That said, I wonder how many global warming enthusiasts have thought through the full implications of their (in my view overblown) fears of a looming apocalypse. If it is true that global warming threatens the very survival of life on Earth, then all other considerations must, by necessity, be secondary to preventing global warming from happening.
That includes, first and foremost, the reproductive rights of women. Some global warming fearmongers have been good enough to acknowledge as much. Bill Nye, a progressive TV personality, wondered if we should “have policies that penalise people for having extra kids.”
Then there is travel and nutrition. Is it really so difficult to imagine a future in which each of us is issued with a carbon credit at the start of each year, limiting what kind of food we eat (locally grown potatoes will be fine, but Alaskan salmon will be verboten) and how far we can travel (visiting our in-laws in Ohio once a year will be permitted, but not Paris). In fact, it is almost impossible to imagine a single aspect of human existence that would be free from government interference – all in the name of saving the environment.
These ideas might sound nutty, but they are slowly gaining ground. Just last week, a study came out estimating the environmental benefits of “having one fewer child (an average for developed countries of 58.6 tonnes CO2-equivalent (tCO2e) emission reductions per year), living car-free (2.4 tCO2e saved per year), avoiding air travel (1.6 tCO2e saved per roundtrip transatlantic flight) and eating a plant-based diet (0.8 tCO2e saved per year).”
Monday, 24 Jul 2017 10:19 AM
As accurately reported, a huge 2,240 square mile region of a floating ice shelf nearly the size of the state of Delaware recently split off of the Western Antarctic Peninsula. The new iceberg accounts for about 12 percent of the total shelf called “Larsen C.”
It should be no surprise that this event is being cited my many in the mainstream media as more clear evidence that human smokestacks and SUVs are overheating the planet and raising sea levels. Stoking this fossil-fueled fire and brimstone, they can blame President Trump for failing to jump aboard the sunbeam and windmill-powered Paris Climate Accord hybrid train to salvation.
At the risk of ruining a really good and scary campfire story, there are some important reasons for less concern and guilt.
For starters, consider that the entire West Antarctic ice sheet which has truly been experiencing modest warming contains less than 10 percent of continent’s total ice mass.
That other 90 percent has been getting colder, with no decline in polar ice extant since satellite recordings first began in 1979.
Researchers from the University of Maryland, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center and the engineering firm Sigma Space Corporation reported satellite data showing that between 2003 and 2008, the continent of Antarctica has gained ice mass.
As summarized by Jay Zwally, a NASA geologist and lead author of the study, “We’re essentially in agreement with other studies that show an increase in ice discharge in other parts of the continent,” adding that “Our main disagreement is for East Antarctica and the interior of West Antarctica; there we see an ice gain that exceeds the losses in other areas.”
Overall, the West Antarctic ice sheet has been melting at about its recent rate over thousands of years, a condition that will likely continue until either it entirely disappears or the next Ice Age intervenes to enable global warming alarmists to relax. As their domiciles and rose gardens become buried under miles of ice, those worrisome sea levels will likely drop about 400 feet again, just as they did during the last Ice Age.
Meanwhile, the latest iceberg won’t contribute to sea level rise which has been occurring without acceleration at the rate of about 7 inches per century over the past several hundreds of years, long before the Industrial Revolution. Just like a melting ice cube in a glass of water (or whatever), the level won’t change at all.
Can the calving be confidently attributed to climate change (global warming) at all? As quoted in The Wall Street Journal, Kelly Brunt, a glaciologist at the University of Maryland and the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, doesn’t believe so. She said that while the calving event was “way outside the average size,” it lacked telltale signs such as melt ponds.
Dr. Brunt went on to observe that while the collapse of an entire ice shelf could contribute more problematically to sea level rise by helping to prevent ice from the continent’s interior from creeping toward the edge and into the sea, this shouldn’t be a major concern in this instance. Since glaciers originating from a mountain range blocked by Larsen C are relatively small, the potential effects of an entire collapse would be “nothing to lose sleep over.”
Major West Antarctic ice sheet calving is nothing new. A similar event occurred at neighboring Larsen B in 2002. From a scientific perspective this can be expected to continue for reasons none of us, not even by bicycling our pets to the vet or electric carpooling, can control.
There is strong evidence indicating that the West Antarctic ice sheet isn’t melting due to warming surface temperatures, but rather because of natural heating from below.
In 2012 some experts from the University of Aberdeen and British Antarctic Survey discovered a huge one-mile-deep rift valley about the size of the Grand Canyon located beneath the ice in the Western Antarctica. Since this previously-hidden ice-filled basin connects directly with the warmer ocean, they think it might constitute a major cause for much of the melting in this region.
It might also be worth mentioning that a chain of active volcanoes has recently been discovered under that West Antarctic ice sheet as well. While it is believed that eruptions are unlikely to penetrate through the up to more than mile-thick overlying ice, researchers conclude that they could generate enough melt water to significantly influence ice stream flow.
So what does all of this really mean? It depends upon who we ask. Al Gore and the mainstream media will continue to tell us that it means more fossil fuel regulations and wind power subsidies are urgently needed to prevent catastrophic coastal flooding. Others will say that those who spread such nonsense are already in way over their heads.
Larry Bell is an endowed professor of space architecture at the University of Houston where he founded the Sasakawa International Center for Space Architecture (SICSA) and the graduate program in space architecture. He is the author of “Scared Witless: Prophets and Profits of Climate Doom”(2015) and “Climate of Corruption: Politics and Power Behind the Global Warming Hoax” (2012).
Fifteen posts into this series — and I certainly hope that you have read all of them — perhaps there are still a few of you out there who continue to believe that this whole global average surface temperature (GAST), “hottest year ever,” “record warming” thing can’t really be completely fraudulent. I mean, these claims are put out by government bureaucrats, highly paid “experts” in their designated field of temperature measurement. It’s really complicated stuff to figure out a “global average surface temperature” from hundreds of scattered thermometers, some of which get moved, get read at different times of the day, have cities grow up around them, whatever. Somebody’s got to make the appropriate adjustments. Surely, they are trying their best to get the most accurate answer they can with a challenging task. Could it really be that they are systematically lying to the people of America and the world?
The designated field for my own career was civil litigation, and in that field lawyers regularly call upon ordinary members of the public (aka jurors) to draw the inference of whether fraud has occurred. Lawyers claiming that a defendant has committed fraud normally proceed by presenting to the jury a few glaring facts about what the defendant has done. “Here is what he said”; and “here is the truth.” The defendant then gets the chance to explain. The jurors apply their ordinary judgment and experience to the facts presented.
So, consider yourself a member of my jury. The defendants (NASA and NOAA) have been accused of arbitrarily adjusting the temperatures of the past downward in order to make fraudulent claims of “hottest year ever” for the recent years. You decide! I’ll give you a couple of data points that have come to my attention just today.
James Freeman is the guy who has taken over the Wall Street Journal’s “Best of the Web” column since James Taranto moved on to another gig at the paper earlier this year. Here is his column for yesterday. (You probably can’t get the whole thing without subscribing, but I’ll give you his critical links.) Freeman first quotes the New York Times, March 29, 1988, which in turn quotes James Hansen, then head of the part of NASA that does the GAST calculations:
One of the scientists, Dr. James E. Hansen of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s Institute for Space Studies in Manhattan, said he used the 30-year period 1950-1980, when the average global temperature was 59 degrees Fahrenheit, as a base to determine temperature variations.
So 59 deg F was the “average global temperature” for the 30-year period 1950-1980. Could that have been a typo? Here is the Times again, June 24, 1988:
Dr. Hansen, who records temperatures from readings at monitoring stations around the world, had previously reported that four of the hottest years on record occurred in the 1980’s. Compared with a 30-year base period from 1950 to 1980, when the global temperature averaged 59 degrees Fahrenheit, the temperature was one-third of a degree higher last year.
OK, definitely not a typo. Freeman also has multiple other quotes from the Times, citing both NASA and “a British group” (presumably Hadley CRU) for the same 59 deg F global average mean for the period 1950-80. So let’s then compare that figure to the official NOAA January 18, 2017 “record” global warming press release: “2016 marks three consecutive years of record warmth for the globe”:
2016 began with a bang. For eight consecutive months, January to August, the globe experienced record warm heat. With this as a catalyst, the 2016 globally averaged surface temperature ended as the highest since record keeping began in 1880. . . .
And kindly tell us, what was the global average temperature that constituted this important “record warm heat”?
The average temperature across global land and ocean surfaces in 2016 was 58.69 degrees F . . . .
OK, over to you to decide. Was the claimed “record warm heat” real, or was it an artifact of downward adjustments of earlier temperatures? If you think it might help (it won’t), here is a link to NASA’s lengthy bafflegab explanation of its adjustments. It’s way too long to copy into this post, and provides literally no useful information as to what they are doing, or why they think it’s OK.
Do you still think it might be possible that they are playing straight with you? My friend Joe D’Aleo (he’s one of the co-authors of the paper that was the subject of Part XV of this series) sent me this morning a write-up he had done about the temperature adjustments at one of the most prominent sites in the country, the one at Belvedere Castle in Central Park in Manhattan. There are lots of charts and graphs at the link for your edification. The temperature measuring site has been at the very same location near the exact middle of the park since 1920. That location is about 0.2 mi from the West edge of the park, and 0.3 mi from the East edge, so relatively speaking it is highly immune to local land use changes that affect many other stations. Yes, the City has grown some in that century, but the periphery of the park was already rather built up in 1920, and in any event the closest Central Park West park boundary is almost a quarter-mile away at the closest point.
This paper is another real eye-opener. You should read the whole thing (it’s only 7 pages long). The Central Park site is one for which the National Weather Service (part of NOAA) makes completely original, raw data available. D’Aleo does a comparison between that completely raw data and adjusted data for the same site from NOAA’s so-called “HCN Version 1” set, for two months each year (July and January) going for the century from 1909 to 2008. Essentially all of the temperatures for Central Park in the HCN Version 1 set are adjusted down, and dramatically so; but the adjustments are not uniform. From approximately 1950 to 1999, the downward adjustments for both months are approximately a flat 6 deg F — an astoundingly huge amount, especially given that the recently declared “record” temperature for 2016 beat the previous “record” by all of 0.07 deg C (which would be 0.126 deg F). Then, when 1999 comes, the downward adjustments start to decrease rapidly each year, until by 2008 the downward adjustment is only about 2 deg F. Result: whereas the raw data have no material upward or downward trend of any kind over the whole century under examination, the adjusted data show a dramatic upward slope in temperatures post-2000, all of which is in the adjustments rather than the raw data. D’Aleo:
[T]he adjustment [for July] was a significant one (a cooling exceeding 6 degrees from the mid 1950s to the mid 1990s.) Then inexplicably the adjustment diminished to less than 2 degrees. The result is [that] a trendless curve for the past 50 years became one with an accelerated warming in the past 20 years. It is not clear what changes in the metropolitan area occurred in the last 20 years to warrant a major adjustment to the adjustment. The park has remained the same and there has not been a population decline but a spurt in the city’s population [since 1990].
Since NOAA and NASA will not provide a remotely satisfactory explanation of what they are doing with the adjustments, various independent researchers have tried to reverse-engineer the results to figure out what assumptions are implied. One such effort was made by Steve McIntyre of the climateaudit.org website, and D’Aleo discusses that effort at the link. McIntyre gathered from correspondence with NOAA that their algorithm was making an “urbanization” adjustment based on the growing population of the urbanized area surrounding the particular site. Based on the adjusted temperatures reported at Central Park and the known population of New York City in the first half of the twentieth century, McIntyre then extrapolated to calculate the implied population of New York City for the recent years of the adjusted record. He came up with an implied population of about 17 million for 1975-95, then suddenly plunging to barely 1 million in 2005. Well, I guess that’s not how they do it! Any other guesses out there?
By the way, in case you have the idea that you might be able to dig into this and figure out what they are doing, I would point out that by the time you have completed any analysis they will undoubtedly have adjusted their data yet again and will declare your work inapplicable because that’s “not how we do it any more.” As the Wall Street Journal’s Holman Jenkins noted in November 2015:
By the count of researcher Marcia Wyatt in a widely circulated presentation, the U.S. government’s published temperature data for the years 1880 to 2010 has been tinkered with 16 times in the past three years.
I’m just wondering if you still think there’s anything honest about this.
In the 2000s, there was Bush Derangement Syndrome, but it faded after Barack Obama was elected. Then came Trump Derangement Syndrome after it turned out that it wasn’t Hillary Clinton’s turn after all. It, too, will fade after Donald Trump is either voted out of office or serves two terms.
Yet with us always and forever, it seems, is the Global Warming Derangement Syndrome.
Just as Democrats and journalists, typically Democrats with a media pipeline, have lost their minds over the Trump election and have vilified him as a sprite from Hades — often claiming things that are simply untrue and repeatedly declaring him to be mentally ill just because they disagree with his policies or found something he’s said or tweeted that violates their ever-flexible sensibilities — they’ve gone around the glacier over climate change.
It seems a day can’t go by without at least one mainstream media outlet reporting that Old Testament-esque disasters have already begun, or covering the rant of an elected official who is yammering on about how the end is near if big policy changes are immediately enacted. Consider the reaction from Trump’s announcement that he’s pulling the U.S. out of the Paris climate accord. Contact with reality was severed.
Well, actually it’s been severed for some time. It’s the media and alarmists’ distance from reality that has moved. How else to explain how the alarmists, with a supportive media, could rip Trump for backing out of a deal they said was insufficient to start with?
Yet they did, even though James Hansen, the global warming alarmist in chief, said when the Paris accord was agreed to that it was “a fraud really, a fake.”
But this is only a small portion of the derangement that has produced a rising ocean of fake news.
For years we’ve been bombarded with claims that we had only so many months or years to do something about climate change, only to have those deadlines pass without incident; that every ice shelf that has naturally broken off from a landmass or glacier that’s receded is a sign of imminent human-caused disaster; that heavy storms are indisputable evidence that man is cooking his planet with carbon dioxide emissions; that our capitalism-driven advancements are going to eventually cause famine, war, and economic and civilizational doom.
The alarmists’ screeching is incessant, their lectures grating and without restraint, their hypocrisy as fetid as the wrong side of a sewage treatment plant. And of course their fanaticism is so rigid they cannot acknowledge anything that challenges their narrative.
Such as a report issued last month that says the global average surface temperature (GAST) data that are used to frighten and force everyone to surrender to the leftist-progressive agenda “are not a valid representation of reality.”
The report says that “it is impossible to conclude from the three published GAST data sets that recent years have been the warmest ever — despite current claims of record setting warming.”
This isn’t a news release from an oil company trying to pass a public relations effort off as science. It is authentic work that has been, in the words of a Zero Hedge blogger, “peer reviewed by administrators, scientists and researchers from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (M.I.T.), and several of America’s leading universities.”
But it will be tossed into the “Ignore” baskets in the mainstream media’s newsrooms, just as these “80 graphs from 58 new (2017) papers invalidate claims of unprecedented global-scale modern warming” will also be trashed.
Because none fit the narrative. Because none will help the Democrat-media industrial complex “Dump Trump.” Because all challenge the “scientific consensus” and therefore the power and status that the alarmists have seized through their campaign of fear and intimidation. Because this is just the deranged way the political left and its media wing operate.
Dr David Whitehouse, GWPF Science Editor
Politicians are usually seen as fair game for criticism especially if they talk about the inconvenient details of climate change. If only they would stick to the simplicities and repeat the mantra that climate change is real and happening and we are entirely to blame. Woe betide any politician who delves into the detail. Usually we like our politicians to get down amongst the minutiae of government, but not when it comes to climate change.
This is what happened when the Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt discussed the global temperature hiatus of the past 20 years. In written comments to the U.S. Senate about his confirmation hearing on the 18th of January he wrote, “over the past two decades satellite data indicates there has been a leveling off of warming.”
Despite the vigorous debate about the hiatus in the peer-reviewed literature this was seen by some as such an incorrect statement that a response had to be made, and fast.
Ben Santer of the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory was quick off the mark putting together a paper for the journal Nature Scientific Reports. It looked at satellite measurements of the temperature of the atmosphere close to the ground from when such data first became available in 1979. It concluded: Satellite temperature measurements do not support the recent claim of a “leveling off of warming” over the past two decades. Tropospheric warming trends over recent 20-year periods, the authors concluded, are always significantly larger (at the 10% level or better) than model estimates of 20-year trends arising from natural internal variability.
Ben Santer on the Seth Myers Show.
The Nature Scientific Reports paper was submitted on 6th March, accepted on the 4th of April and published on the 24th May. But as that paper, with its simple message that Pruitt was wrong, was being written another paper on the same topic and also involving Santer was already in the works. It had been submitted three months before, on the 23rd of December the previous year.
It was eventually published in Nature Geoscience on 19th June having been accepted on the 22nd of May. It comes to an entirely different conclusion about the hiatus. “We find that in the last two decades of the twentieth century, differences between modelled and observed tropospheric temperature trends are broadly consistent with internal variability. Over most of the early twenty-first century, however, model tropospheric warming is substantially larger than observed; warming rate differences are generally outside the range of trends arising from internal variability…We conclude that model overestimation of tropospheric warming in the early twenty-first century is partly due to systematic deficiencies in some of the post-2000 external forcings used in the model simulations.”
In other words the climate models have failed. They did not predict and they cannot explain the hiatus. To reach this conclusion the Nature Geoscience paper analysed trends in the satellite data over 10, 12, 14, 16 and 18 years because the researchers said that they are typical record lengths used for the study of the ‘warming slowdown’ in the early 21st century. Note they did not analyse trends over 20 years directly. Thus the first Santer et al paper analysed the past 20 years and concluded there was no hiatus, while his second paper concluded there was a hiatus of up to 18 years, the maximum period that paper studied.
The authors realised the problem of the two papers seemingly conflicting results. To avoid any confusion they issued a helpful Q&A document saying the results were not contradictory but complimentary. It must be said that two methods they used are only very slightly different. On would expect them to give the same result. But that does not matter. If as the authors say the results are complimentary why was the result that disagreed with Pruitt used with no qualification or hint that a similar technique showed the opposite?
On the 22nd February Ben Santer on appeared on the Seth Meyers chat show saying these are strange and unusual times, something that with hindsight is laced with irony. He was introduced as being from the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory but stated he was talking as a private citizen about research he had done and published on behalf of the Program for Climate Model Diagnosis and Intercomparison at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.
U.S. Senator Ted Cruz on the Seth Myers Show in March 2015.
Santer aimed his sights at a statement made by U.S. Senator Ted Cruz statement made on the same show two years earlier:
“Many of the alarmists on global warming, they got a problem because the science doesn’t back them up. And in particular, satellite data demonstrates for the last 17 years, there’s been zero warming. None whatsoever. “
Santer challenged Senator Cruz in direct contradiction of his own paper he had submitted but wasn’t published yet:
“Listen to what he (Cruz) said. Satellite data. So satellite measurements of atmospheric temperature show no significant warming over the last 17 years, and we tested it. We looked at all of the satellite data in the world, from all groups, and wanted to see, was he right or not? And he was wrong. Even if you focus on a small segment of the now 38-year satellite temperature record – the last 17 years – was demonstrably wrong.”
“So the bizarre thing is, Senator Cruz is a lawyer. He’s got to look at all of the evidence when he’s trying a case, when he’s involved in a case, not just one tiny segment of the evidence.”
Oh the irony.