Canadian journalist Donna Laframboise. Former National Post & Toronto Star columnist, past vice president of the Canadian Civil Liberties Association. New posts: Mondays & Wednesdays.
Are climate change ‘facts’ so hard to come by that a not-yet-finalized draft report is considered evidence?
A few days ago, the website of Al Gore’s Climate Reality Project ran the following headline: The Facts: How Climate Change is Affecting America.
Below it is a news item talking up the draft of a US government document that has attracted severe criticism. Last month my piece, Authors of ‘Extreme Misrepresentation’, drew attention to Roger Pielke Jr’s harsh assessment of this document. In his words, its authors
must have gone to some effort to mischaracterize [the science relating to climate change and natural disasters] by 180 degrees.
For my part, I pointed out that eight of the 13 most senior people responsible for writing it are linked to green activist groups. In other words, they aren’t the sort of dispassionate, beyond-reproach experts in whose judgment we can place our faith. Rather, they appear to be a collection of individuals who are predisposed to jump to alarming conclusions.
But let me repeat: this is a draft. Even the Internet URL of this 1,146-page document says it’s a “public review draft”:
One circulates a draft so that other people will read it and help you identify errors. Only when those errors are corrected and the final version of the document has been released should anyone point to it as a trustworthy source of information.
But the activists over at the Climate Reality Project have jumped the gun. There must be way too much money and far too many people on the payroll over there, because they’ve actually gone to the trouble of producing nine – count ’em – “Fact Sheets” about what this draft says. Point number one on the Alaska fact sheet reads:
Climate change is happening now, and is primarily caused by carbon pollution from fossil fuels like coal, oil, and gas. How much the climate changes in the future is up to us.
“Fact Sheets” based on a draft document that is months away from being finalized. “Fact Sheets” produced by people who believe that we puny humans – who remain incapable of predicting either earthquakes or volcanoes – actually have the power to determine how the climate behaves.
This is the process by which the Al Gore machine manufactures scientific “facts.”