Is catastrophic global warming, like the Millennium Bug, a mistake?

Simon Carr

101911870 300x199 Is catastrophic global warming, like the Millennium Bug, a mistake? At a public meeting in the Commons, the climate scientist Professor Richard Lindzen of MIT made a number of declarations that unsettle the claim that global warming is backed by “settled science”. They’re not new, but some of them were new to me.

Over the last 150 years CO2 (or its equivalents) has doubled. This has been accompanied by a rise in temperature of seven or eight tenths of a degree centigrade.

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change attributes half this increase to human activity.

Lindzen says: “Claims that the earth has been warming, that there is a Greenhouse Effect, and that man’s activity have contributed to warming are trivially true but essentially meaningless.”

He said our natural body temperature varies by eight tenths of a degree.

He showed a Boston newspaper weather graphic for a day – it had the actual temperature against a background of the highest and lowest recorded temperature for that day. The difference was as much as 60 degrees F.

When you double CO2 there’s a two per cent change in the “radiation budget”. Yet two billion years ago, the sun was 20 to 30 per cent dimmer – and the planet’s temperature was about the same.

The Al Gore graph showing CO2 and temperature rising and falling in tandem showed that the release of CO2 from the oceans was prompted by warming, not vice versa.

He gave us a slide with a series of familiar alarms – melting ice caps, disappearing icebergs, receding glaciers, rising sea levels. It was published by the US Weather Bureau in 1922.

And one further element of the consensus: there’s been no increase in temperature for 15 years.

He concluded with an exposition of science that, frankly, I didn’t follow. However, the reliability and explanatory power of climate models was satirised convincingly. And I found myself believing – or accepting the possibility – that warming would reduce rather than increase tropical storms.

He also said that the IPCC needs “positive feedback mechanisms” to justify anything above a one degree C  increase in their predictions. But: “Observation points to small negative feedbacks.”

How to explain the procession of eminent opinion leaders – some even in our own Royal Society – who advance the tenets of catastrophic global warming? “It is science in the service of politics,” he said.

If Lindzen is right, we will never be able to calculate the trillions that have been spent on the advice of “scientists in the service of politics”.

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  • doomdelayed

    No I can’t believe that any rational human being would spend so much time copying and pasting exactly the same text, over and over again either so why do you persist in doing it, RW?

  • doomdelayed

    It seems you disagree irrationally with every post any sceptic makes so why not that too?

  • njp1

    The “Himalayan glacier debcale”, as you so eloquently put it, was a single paragraph buried so deeply in WG2 that hardly anyone (least of all the “sceptics”) had even noticed it, prior to the error being pointed out by an actual scientist, and acknowledged by the IPCC. At this point,it naturally garnered the attention of all the science denying websites. After all, if one error was found in a several thousand page report, that must mean the whole thing is worthless, right?

    I see that you have been unable to furnish me with the details I requested. That’s because none of those things are in the the IPCC reports, isn’t it?

  • njp1

    As well as not understanding science, you seem to not understand English. I have not “paraphrased” Galileo.

  • njp1

    My disagreement with the “sceptics” is precisely because they are not rational. Their rejection of science is based on ideology, rather than logic.

    Quite why you have decided to use this discussion to ramble on about Alan Turing is something of a mystery.

  • mygreenhandy

    Few genuine skeptics have ever “denied” climate change”

    Au contraire. Skeptics held the line at first (propaganda provided by “nonprofits” funded by…OIL COMPANIES circa 1998) that the world was NOT warming.

    Later, as oil companies caved to real scientists and engineers (in fear of lying lest it torpedo their careers?) who said “Facts are facts–the world is warming and has been since the Industrial Revolution,” the so-called debate(which doesn’t deserve to be debate, since facts are not debatable) shifted slightly to “What/who is causing the warming?”

    ClimateGate has been disproved after being investigated 4 times…it’s clear that skeptics took the stolen emails (for which no one has been prosecuted) completely out of context (confused lay meanings with scientific ones–possibly intentionally, possibly not) and used them to promote an agenda already based on falsehoods, disinformation and myths. Look at for more on that, if you want to work to understand the science and meaning of the supposed infamous phrase, “hide the data” skeptics keep turning over and over at night about.

    Are humans responsible for most of it? Unequivocally YES. This is the territory Lindzen has slipped off the edge from, since his “findings” have no scientific support. Debunked here:

    Finally, climate models are HIGHLY accurate. Another debunked myth that still echoes, uninformed, in the chamber of dead claims and preposterous hype. Evidence posted here:
    Try better, more in-depth research. Claims found not to be supported by facts–also called disinformation, ignorance, myths or lies–can embarrass the claimant.
    Of course, if your global warming skepticism is a religion, we can’t expect any of its adherents to rely on facts, evidence or science. You of course have the right to free speech, however devoid of fact it is. And it is.

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