Sunday, April 01, 2007

The Great Global Warming Swindle - an outline

The Great Global Warming Swindle is a British video production available at

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=4340135300469846467

It would be good for it to be presented in schools along side Al Gore's Inconvenient Truth. It is unlikely that this will happen.

Key points [my comments are in parentheses]:

1. The earth's climate is always changing.

2. The change that we are experiencing is well within historical norms.

3. Dissenting voices are met with intolerance and de-funding.

4. Global warming is not scientific -- it is political, ideological, moral and even religious.

5. Carbon Dioxide (Co2) has been 3x even 10x greater than it is now, without apparent effects on temperature.

6. Many people whose names are included in science reports disagree with the findings.

7. Conclusions are politically-driven.

8. Bibliographies include reviewers and non-scientists, not all of whom agree with the findings.

9. "Since no other scientists disagree you shouldn't either" is false logic.

10. Climate scientists need there to be a problem in order to get funding. "This may not be a problem" will not get you funding. Thousands of jobs now depend on global warming. It has become a government-funded, government sustained industry. [Not unlike the poverty industry.] There are now climate journalists, whose careers depend upon a sustained crisis.

11. The thrust of the proposed solution is to hinder development in the third world.

12. A media scare has become the defining idea of a generation.

13. The world in the past has been both a lot warmer and a lot colder.

14. The warming trend we are now experiencing began 200 years ago.

15. In the past, the Thames froze over. There are paintings to support this. Further back, there was a medieval warm period. Climate enabled a much different lifestyle in the medieval period -- the cathedral building era. Vineyards in England.

16. During the Holocene Maximum, temperatures were much warmer than today -- and this lasted for thousands of years. This did not wipe out the polar bears.

17. Climate change is perfectly natural.

18. Warming began well before cars and airplanes were invented.

19. After the 2nd world war, during the industrial boom, temperatures fell for four decades. Only in the 1970s did they start rising. [Critics respond that this was due to fluorocarbons being introduced into the atmosphere at that time, which caused global cooling.]

20. C02 forms only a small part of the earth's atmosphere. It is .054%, an incredibly small portion. The portion added by humans is even smaller. Only a small percentage of gases in the atmosphere are greenhouse gases. C02 is a minor component of greenhouse gas. Water vapour is by far the largest. Greenhouse gases trap heat in the troposphere. This troposphere should be hotter. Satellites and weather ballooms are used to take the temperature of the atmosphere. Actual data show that the warming that we are experiencing is likely not caused by greenhouse gases. [Critics say that the readings were off, and have been "corrected" -- it's unlikely that "off" readings that support global warming theories get scrutinized.]

21. Al Gore's presentation is based on ice core surveys. These surveys show a clear relationship between temperature and C02. "When there is more C02, the temperature gets warmer". The link is actually the wrong-way-round. Temperature changes lead C02 by 800 years -- so C02 is not driving the increase in temperature; the increase in temperature is driving the increase in C02.

22. Carbon Dioxide is a natural gas produced by all living things. It is not a pollutant.

23. Humans produce a small fraction of the C02. Volcanoes produce more Co2 than all factories put together. More is produced by animals and bacteria. Dying vegetation produces even more. The biggest source, by far, is the oceans.

24. The ocean is the major reservoir into which C02 goes. If you heat the ocean, it emits C02. If you cool it, it absorbs more C02. Oceans are so big and so deep they take hundreds of years to heat up and cool down. Their "memory" of temperature fluctuations runs into thousands of years.

25. In the past 150 years, the earth has warmed by just over 0.5 degrees celsius. Most of this occurred before 1940.

26. If C02 doesn't drive earth's climate, what does? 6.5 billion humans are tiny relative to the greatness of the sun.

27. Late 1980's Piers Corbyn began predicting weather based on sun spots.

28. 1893 - Edward Monda observed during the little ice age, very few sunspots.

29. Sunspots correlate to temperature changes on earth to a remarkable degree. Sunspots rose until 1940, fell until 1970, and now have risen again. This data has been analyzed over 400 years, and it fits.

30. The sun affects us directly through its rays, and indirectly through subatomic particles which produce clouds. When the quantity of cloud-forming cosmic rays go up, the temperature goes down, and vice-versa. Clouds and climate are very closely linked. Climate is controlled by clouds; clouds are controlled by cosmic rays, and cosmic rays are controlled by the sun [and the sun is controlled by God -- "there shall be signs in the heavens above and the earth beneath"]. The intensity of the sun's magnetic field more than doubled during the 20th cc.

31. Global warming advocates talk about the harm of coal, oil and gas, but never the benefits, nor the harm caused by their proposed solutions. Four million children die yearly from the effects of indoor smoke in third-world countries. Many adults die as well.

As Christians, we are interested in truth. At present, it seems right to oppose the tsunami of man-made global warming because, like darwinian evolution, it is based on ideology, not science.

The heavens declare the glory of God.

And that's the way the Ball bounces.

7 comments:

Alexandre said...

Hi RK!
Missed me?
First of all: your going to Africa has genuinely made me think of you as a far better person than I did before. Just for the record.
You made a bunch of statements above that without some references are just as good as the following:
1- our planet shape is a cube
2- all pictures of a round Earth are a hoax. It is widely known how easy it is to forge such pictures.
3- all scientists that wisely say otherwise get no funding.
4- all dissenting scientists were silenced by the establishment, as you can easily confirm.
5- the fallacy of a round Earth is easily refuted by anyone who has ever climbed a mountain: look around, it´s flat. Look out of your airplane window: it´s flat.
6- The idea of a round Earth is a conspiracy against the Catholic Church started by Galileo. Which, by the way, confessed himself to be wrong (I know that´s not what Galileo said, but you get the idea).

Just to pick some of the claims: it´s just rubbish to say that the present temperature variation is within normal. Look at the following graphic:
http://www.ucar.edu/research/climate/warming.jsp
(I´ve posted it before, I just think you didn´t look at it. It juxtaposes the warming with and without atropogenic factors. That includes your solar spots reasoning too. And your 0.5ºC over the last 150, being most of it before 1940 – that was wild.)
of course, you can dismiss that as just a forged proof of money-seeking scientists. One can also say (even write whole books about it) that the holocaust never took place, or that man has never been to the moon, or that Australia is a hoax, since I´ve never seen it. And don´t post any pictures of Australia, because I won´t be that easily fooled.
Yes, global warming startet very timidly 200 years ago. We started using fossil fuels on the Industrial Revolution very timidly 200 years ago.
Yes, the Holocen has had a warmer period - slightly warmer, we´ll probably catch up that with soon, too. It took a few thousand years too warm up that much. We´re taking 200 years. And - regard this - half of all the warming happened over the last 40 years (http://www.cgd.ucar.edu/research/past/images/1000_yr_temp.png). I´d really like to see someone with some knowledge claiming all this is "normal". Actually, I´d be really pleased to find out all this issue was just someone´s wrong calculating.
Yes, carbon dioxide is natural. We all know we exhale it ourselves. It´s its concentration that is abnormal.
Oh, and I´m sure –and this is admittedly speculative, though it makes sense to me- if you have some global-warming-refuting theory, it would be quite easy to get funding from the American government, the oil industry and the automobile industry. And there´s plenty of money there. Don´t you think?
Have you had a look at the IPCC report?

RkBall said...

Alexandre -- yes, indeed I missed you. I've been thinking warm thoughts about you, although I suppose for the good of the planet I should stop before Al Gore tracks me down!

1. I checked your graph. The point is this. It is a model. It is not reality. It is impossible for scientists to objectively scrape off other factors and determine with any kind of objective precision the "anthropogenic" component. It's all assumptions, assumptions, assumptions.

2. Yes, temperature has been monitored for 100 years. But how much of this monitoring has been near cities, and how much of the increase in temperature is caused by the fact that cities are heat-emitting because of all the energy consumed?

BTW, I was not presenting this list as "facts". I was just summarizing the points made in the video.

You know more about this than me. Is it true that volcanoes spew out far more carbon dioxide than man-made causes?

RkBall said...

Alexandre -- I clicked on your profile to get some information on you, and... nothing! You're a masked man (or, gasp, woman!), a phantom, a person without a country wandering the ether of the internet superhighway. "Alexandre" could be a pseudonym for some well-known environmentalist. Why, you could even be - Al Gore !!!!!!!

Is that you, Al?

Alexandre said...

lol... Yes, that´s me, Alexandre Gore, or Al Gore for short... Ok, seriously, I´ll give my gmail profile more attention so that you have some more information about this phantom.

Alexandre said...

Now back to the point:

1. What exactly do you call "assumptions"? Those graphics are not something like "Ok, let´s ASSUME the Lakers will win the next season and then figure some unfolding consequences from that point on".
There are clues that help figure what was the planet´s climate in the past. Tree rings and Oxygen isotopes are two that I know of (I can into a bit more detail if you´re interested).
Of course, in Science anything can eventually be proved wrong. Isaac Newton was proved wrong by Einstein, and his theory was pretty much obvious, in retrospect. Even so, it´s quite rare that a theory is proven to be a total rubbish afterwards. Newton is not rubbish today. It´s just not exactly accurate, especially under certain circumstances.
And the fact is, that in practice you are sorrounded by examples (including the Internet we´re using) of things Science was able to figure out right.
So it´s not just an assumption: there are clues from different sources that indicate that. The many lines you see on the second graph represent these different sources. They differ from each other, but the trend is clear.
And... if look at it, you didn´t have much difficulty in believing that there was a warmer period in the Holocene some thousand years ago. Yet the evidence of the unnatural recent warming meets far more resistance.

2.The heat inside cities and its sorroundings is a well known effect. It´s taken into consideration. The was a video I saw once where they mentioned this... I´ll post something when I find its link, if you´re interested.

It looks like the skepticism of the layman that does not know the field and asks himself "how can they know that?". The skepticism itself is natural, and even healthy. But I´m sure if you took some time to really find out where those people drew their conclusions from, you wouldn´t dismiss it so lightly. Here´s another link I suggest:
http://www.grida.no/climate/ipcc_tar/wg1/index.htm
Look at our conversation so far: a consortium of well-known and respected American Universities (NCAR) say the warming is real and dangerous, the World Meteorological Oragnization says it´s real and dangerous (through IPCC), if you bother talk to someone you know who works with something related to climate he´ll probably say that too (and not because he expects funding from you). But a website with Marvin the Martian on it says it´s rubbish, so it´s rubbish. Or a novelist, or some isolated Russian website says it´s rubbish, so it´s rubbish. (by the way, Russia openly declared they would not sign the Kyoto Treaty because they considered Global Warming good for them, not because they denied its existance or its human origin. So a Russian website saying that is a nice candidate to be partisan, and not the other way around). You know that song of The Police that mentions "a blind man looking for a shadow of doubt"?

My father does not believe in dinosaurs. That´s a nice example of that layman´s skepticism. On his opinion the paleontologists are a group of people that secretly made that up to have a laugh at less educated people.
That´s harmless.
But in your case, (and all the people that think like you do) personal choices are made based on that, and that´s the harmful part. If you think like you do, why buy a more fuel-efficient car? Why bother setting a cleaner legal limit to car gas-emissions? Why recycling? Why preserving a forest while I don´t even like hiking? Why do I need a polar cap anyway? If you like ice go live in a fridge!
There are good answers for every one of the questions above, but you´re just dismissing them without even wanting to know.
Actually, if you agreed with the importance of issues like the above, and showed that on you blog, you could say Michael Crichton is the greatest climate scientist in the world - I wouldn´t mind.

Alexandre said...

Oh, and about the volcanoes:
I don´t know how much CO2 they spew out, I´ll try and find that out. What I do know, is that they´re important enough to influence the world´s climate. An eruption as big as Krakatoa´s had an impact (slight one, but yet present) on the whole world´s mean temperature. But just for now, let´s say it is really more than man made causes. Be careful with the conclusions you draw from it.

The greenhouse effect is there since the beginning of times. In fact, our neighbour planets have far more of it, since their atmosphere is more than 90% CO2. Life depended (and still depends) on it to exist here, otherwise we would freeze. The thing is, we are changing its intensity. CO2 has always been there, some trace methane has been there for a long time, but we´re changing it´s concentration, and that´s already bad enough.

Let´s say you eat something and it causes you a 41ºC fever. You almost die, so you complain to the guy that sold you that poisoned food, but he argues "What you´re talking about? Most of your body heat came from other natural causes, what are you complaining about those extra 5ºC for?"

RkBall said...

The assumptions have to do with what is fed into the models that project out into the future. They are filled with assumptions. It's like finding out that the burger you are eating and thought was beef is full of filler. I saw an article recently that said once you have four assumptions, you can control the outcome in anyway you like. If I run across it, I'll post it.

Even the discounting of the heat generated by cities involves estimates and assumptions. The "hard science" becomes a bit softer. Now, let's say that reasonably the amt. of temperature increase due to the development of modern cities may be in a range of .5 -1.5%. So, .5 would be an acceptable input to your model. As would 1.0, as would 1.5. Now, let's further assume that your funding depends on coming up with results that raise eyebrows, attract attention, raise media interest etc. Which figure are you going to plug into your model? The one that may cause your funding to dry up, or the one that will pretty much ensure continued funding going forward?

You have to admit it's at least a temptation.

Now imagine that there's not just one of these; in your complex climate model there are 50 variables, each of which has a range of inputs that would be considered plausible. At this point, you are in control of the outcome, by controlling the inputs.

Plus, you also control the internal algorithms that are going to be used.

Speaking of which -- how about that hockey stick graph, eh? I've heard that the program behind it has been exposed as fraudulent, that just about any figures entered into it would result in the hockey stick.

So, there are two problems: a) the assumptions you build into your input data, and b) the algorithms you use -- algor - wait a minute, Al Gore - Al Gore rhythms - are you getting this? Al Gore rhythms are responsible for all the hype about global warming!!!

Someone needs to look into all the Al Gore rhythms inside all the programs and their impact on global warming hype.

"... nothing intellectually compelling or challenging.. bald assertions coupled to superstition... woefully pathetic"