Attempts to deal with the Gulf of Mexico oil spill are being hampered by a foolish EPA regulation and other bizarre concerns.
A naive grad student is the lead author of a controversial paper that purports to assess the credibility of scientists who hold a variety of views on climate change.
831 people will help write the next edition of the climate bible. We’re being told their names and countries of residence but not much more. How do we know if they really are the world’s top experts?
What do climate skeptics look like? Is it possible they’re smart, well-intentioned men and women who simply see the world differently?
The “screaming death spiral” scientist now admits he might have overstated the Arctic ice melt situation.
When the biographies of university-affiliated “researchers” talk about saving the world from climate change, the polling data they produce should be taken with a grain of salt.
A law professor cross-examines an “expert witness” – the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s climate bible. Although this document is supposed to be objective and even-handed, he says its authors frequently ignore, minimize & conceal scientific evidence that doesn’t fit the carbon-dioxide-is-the-culprit narrative.
The media frequently declares that thousands of scientists all agree that the planet’s slight warming in the late 20th century was due to human activity. In fact, only a few dozen people – working on one particular chapter of a much larger report – had a voice in that discussion.
Images from a 700-strong climate skeptics conference held in Chicago (June 2010).
It is frequently alleged that climate skeptics are being funded by big oil – and that their views should therefore not be trusted. In fact, green groups have received far more funding from oil interests. Really.
Journalists go on and on about “fragile” Mother Earth. But the available evidence suggests she can bounce back quickly from oil spills.
British blogger James Delingpole is feisty and irreverent. In person, he exudes a joyful love of life. I took some photos of him in Chicago, June 2010.
Sudan is a troubled, impoverished nation with a questionable human rights record. Why is a representative of that country occupying one of the most senior positions with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change? Is the fight against climate change to be led by the violent & unsavoury?
Close examination of the climate bible leaves one dumbfounded. Almost nothing we’ve been told about it seems remotely true. Almost nothing the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s chairman, Rajendra Pachauri, has said – or continues to say – about that document seems connected to reality.
According to the chairman of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the 2007 climate bible “was based on scientific studies completed before January 2006.” So how could a paper that wasn’t accepted for publication in a scientific journal until May 2008 (29 months later) be cited multiple times?
The American Library Association defines intellectual freedom as the “right of every individual to both seek and receive information from all points of view.” Eco activists who attempt to silence the voices of climate skeptics threaten intellectual freedom as well as free speech.
Images from the press conference prior to a 700-participant climate skeptics’ conference in Chicago (May 2010).
Climate bible authors referenced numerous yet-to-be published scientific papers in order to make their case. This raises troubling questions about the role of certain editors of certain scientific journals.
When the IPCC flouts its own rules outrageously – yet insists it has followed them religiously – its credibility evaporates.
If the IPCC can’t be trusted to describe its own report accurately, why should we believe anything else it says?
American professors are encouraging journalism students to suppress certain kinds of news so that the public won’t be confused by climate skepticism. This turns journalists into arbiters of truth and treats the public like children.
We’ve been told the climate bible meets the highest standards. Guess that’s why the section dealing with global warming and North American tourism uses a number taken from a snowmobile lobby group press release.
The climate bible relies on a news article that is actually an abridged press release to backup certain claims. Even worse, this news article doesn’t talk about the issues the IPCC is discussing. Not even close.
The climate bible bases its argument on a news article that’s really a press release in disguise.
The UN’s Nobel-winning, allegedly gold-standard climate bible bases factual assertions on dodgy source material like press releases.
Ten months after the official cutoff date, and well after the expert reviewers were out of the picture, climate bible authors inserted references to the Stern Review into 12 different chapters.
A historian says that while “other social movements…were frequently ridiculed or dismissed…the mass media accorded considerable respect to the environmental cause” when Earth Day was founded 40 years ago.
The chairman of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has repeatedly declared that the climate bible relies solely on peer-reviewed source material. This claim is false. Rajendra Pachauri should resign.
“Over the years, the IPCC has changed from a scientific institution that tries to be policy relevant to a political institution that pretends to be scientific” – so says Richard Tol (an economist who has participated in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change process since the early 1990s).
The British government says 99% of the sources on which the climate bible bases its arguments should be peer-reviewed. But only 70% are.
The chairman of the IPCC has said that non-peer-reviewed research is so undeserving of the IPCC’s attention it should be thrown “into the dustbin.” Yet on one page of the climate bible, only 17% of the text is backed-up by peer-reviewed research.
The climate bible is the ultimate weapon in the global warming debate. Skeptics are told the experts have spoken and that carbon dioxide is the Great Satan.
Forty citizen auditors from 12 countries examined 18,531 sources cited in the latest version of the climate bible – finding 5,587 to be not peer-reviewed. 21 of 44 chapters in the United Nations’ Nobel-winning report had so few peer-reviewed references they earned an F on our report card.
A poll was held prior to the release of our citizen audit findings. That project tallied up the number of climate bible references which involve peer-reviewed sources. (The public has long been told all references are to such material, yet we discovered 1/3 are not.)
The World Wildlife Fund raises half a billion dollars a year. What does it do with this abundance? Short answer: it behaves much like any other large corporation.
Earth Hour is a project of the World Wildlife Fund. The truckloads of free publicity this event attracts may be the primary reason the WWF is now the world’s wealthiest environmental organization.
Economist Richard Tol has written a series of blog posts regarding, among other concerns, the IPCC’s apparent use of non-peer-reviewed literature to neutralize peer-reviewed research findings.
A cartoon pays homage to Steve McIntyre, a private Canadian citizen who believes climate research findings need to be verified by independent third parties. Having led a multi-year crusade to ensure this happens, an excellent book has now been written about McIntyre’s efforts.
Within hours of calling for volunteers to help examine the references in the climate bible, I was contacted by 19 strangers on four continents. These diverse, well-educated people are now taking a close look at the climate bible for themselves.
In this blog post, I invited people to help me examine the references relied upon by the climate bible. Five weeks later, we delivered a report card in which 21 of 44 chapters of the climate bible received an ‘F’.
The chairman of the IPCC has repeatedly told the world the climate bible relies solely on peer-reviewed scientific literature. He is wrong.
Despite vigorous protests from its own expert reviewers, 42% of the documents cited in one chapter of the climate bible are grey literature rather than peer-reviewed.
The public is being told that to doubt global warming is to be anti-science and that to question behaviour reminiscent of adolescent gamers is to “attack” climate scientists for doing their job. It’s time the grown-ups in the scientific community made themselves heard.
Al Gore’s family raised tobacco for years. He boasted about his involvement with this crop on the election campaign trail, and accepted donations from big tobacco. With supreme hypocrisy he now attempts to discredit climate skeptics by connecting them rhetorically to this unpopular industry.
Science is about doubt – not certainty. Journalism is supposed to reveal – not conceal. When scientific organizations claim there’s a consensus, they step over the line into political advocacy. When media outlets trumpet said consensus they “disappear” highly-qualified, dissenting scientists.
One day entire books will be written about the mainstream media’s pathetic coverage of the climate change debate.
30 years ago Greenpeace rented creaky fishing boats. These days it purchases $22-million custom-built mega-yachts. The shoestring voices in the environmental debate now belong to skeptical bloggers.
Mowing one’s lawn is a perfectly ordinary February activity in Vancouver. So why is everyone from President Obama on down arguing that a lack of Olympic Games snow is proof of global warming?
For those of us who think science is about being open to new ideas and perspectives, Michael “hockey stick” Mann isn’t the kind of scientist we’d want our kids to grow up to be.
If I pay for an inspection prior to purchasing a house and later discover the report contained significant errors, it will do the inspector no good to argue that 95 percent of what he wrote is still true. Nor will my confidence be restored when he blusters: “Hey, what’s a few typos?”
Experts have often been spectacularly wrong. Believing their predictions – rather than thinking for ourselves – isn’t smart.
21 years ago, environmental guru Bill McKibben said we’d “burn up” in “a few more decades” if we didn’t stop using fossil fuels.
Real science tells all. It doesn’t hide results that don’t conform to expectations.
When a dish is being prepared in the kitchen of a four-star restaurant, the chef’s opinion is important. But the minute the meal is set in front of a paying customer the chef’s views become irrelevant. If a customer decides the meal is less-than-acceptable a signed statement from 55 other chefs extolling the design of the kitchen changes nothing.
How did the Toronto Star manage, within a period of 66 days, to go from telling us our very survival was at stake due to global warming to arguing that, well, fighting pollution is a good idea?
Activist scientist James Hansen is entitled to his personal political views. But he should not be citing his employer in order to advance them.
Talk about bringing one’s agenda to the party. A vegetarian green entrepreneur thinks the ad is an example of advertising that “casts environmentalists…as wack-jobs.” Someone else demonstrates his Christian beliefs by calling people with whom he disagrees a long list of names.
Drug trial results are closely scrutinized. Corporate financial statements are routinely audited. Yet science academy bureaucrats – and a lot of others who should have known better – have advised us to blindly trust IPCC reports.
When newspaper clippings are cited as evidence in the climate bible, when there’s a discrepancy between what an article says and what the IPCC claims it says – neither the process nor the end result is anything like what we’ve been told.
If the climate bible includes significant mistakes, if it uses newspaper & magazine articles to make its case, if it relies on literature generated by activist organizations – then it is rather a different animal from the uber-respectable paragon of virtue so many journalists have described. Bamboozled by the PR machine that is the IPCC, they’ve passed along bad information to the public.
Two UK newspapers call for the resignation of Rajendra Pachauri, the chairman of the IPCC. A third alleges that while he urges others to reduce their carbon footprint, he himself travels to work (one mile from his home) in a chauffeur-driven car rather than walking, cycling, or driving himself in an eco-friendly vehicle.
Scientists have made all sorts of predictions that never panned out. As this 1962 Popular Mechanics issue shows, the media has been hyping these predictions for decades.
The relationship between Greenpeace and the IPCC is so close that not only are the activist group’s documents cited by the climate bible, the IPCC chairman has written a forward for a Greenpeace publication. Meanwhile, a senior Greenpeace official (whose entire career has been devoted to political activism), has served as an IPCC “scientific expert reviewer.”
NASA’s website parroted the climate bible’s inaccurate prediction regarding the melting of Himalayan glaciers. Rather than independently confirming this prediction by collecting its own evidence, the agency simply accepted the IPCC report as authoritative.
The climate bible cites numerous documents written by the World Wildlife Fund to back up its arguments. But this document is supposed to be a rigorous, wholly scientific assessment.
A few weeks before the IPCC admitted its Himalayan glacier predictions were dead wrong, Time magazine profiled the glacier expert at the center of the storm. Rather than being hard-nosed & rigorous, the magazine fell for him hook, line & sinker.
Celebrities such as Danny Glover may think natural disasters such as the Haiti earthquake of 2010 are connected to global warming. But neither they – nor we – should imagine that these opinions are meaningful.
The Ecologist magazine declared in its first editorial that humans are parasites, an infection, and a disease on planet Earth. We are “waste products” that long ago “ceased to play a useful ecological role.” Written by the “Godfather of Green,” this editorial is emphatically anti-humanitarian in its outlook. The Ecologist claims to have set “the environmental agenda since 1970.”
Certain ideas resurface again & again throughout human history. One of these is the notion that our world is on the brink of collapse. Revisiting news reports about the Y2K computer bug prior to the turn of the century provides an excellent reminder of how the media hypes all sorts of scare stories.
Rather than competing against climate skeptics on an even playing field, out in the open, so that the public can make its own decisions, global warming activists are trying to cheat. They insist theirs is the only perspective that deserves to be heard.
A decade ago, a climate scientist told the media that snow would be rare in Britain within a few years. But plenty has fallen in 9 of the last 10.
A businessman who believes in a diversity of climate opinions, and who thinks a certain amount of hysteria has been associated with global warming is declared mentally ill by a green blogger.
Al Gore has a bad habit. He tries to smear people with whom he disagrees – rather than refuting their arguments. It takes supreme chutzpah for a man with a family history of tobacco farming to use this rhetorical tactic.
30+ years ago, we were told humanity faced “global disaster” and “worldwide catastrophe” if we didn’t radically change our lifestyles. That message now gets linked to global warming, but the analysis – and the fear mongering – is much older.
Scientific investigation produces facts. But even when we have full confidence in the accuracy of these facts we must still choose how to respond to them. When activists insist there’s only one possible response they’re attempting to preempt important democratic discussions, to silence our voices, to substitute their own views for those of the community.
Smart, thoughtful people value dispassionate investigation, careful analysis & logical arguments. Eco guru McKibben seems to think we should listen to him because he cares. Because he cries.
Links to some early reactions and analysis following the release into the public domain of a collection of documents that has come to be called “climategate.”
Climate change protesters who decline to distance themselves from the capitalism-is-the-problem crowd aren’t really serious. If they were, they’d declare loudly that the merits of various political systems is a separate debate.
The media call Al Gore an “eco prophet” and the “thinking man’s thinking man.” So why did Gore repeatedly tell Slate magazine that “the most recent [climategate e-mail] is more than 10 years old” when, in fact, it was less than a month old?
Planet Earth experiences frequent volcanoes, earthquakes, electrical storms, tsunamis & tornadoes. It’s unlikely that this immense, complex system can be controlled by humans.
A book published in the 1970s argued passionately that society couldn’t afford to ignore the danger posed by global cooling. The evidence was too strong, it said – and scientists who disagreed were being irresponsible. Sound familiar?
Is climate change the most pressing problem facing humanity? When a Canadian audience was given the chance to witness a live debate, fewer people thought so afterward than prior.
Emails sent at work are not private. Climategate scientists who say they “personally feel violated” now that their e-mails have become public need to remember that their salaries are paid with taxpayer dollars.
Since the 1970s, some scientists have embraced social & political activism. The public needs to be aware, therefore, that not every pronouncement made by a “scientist” is neutral or disinterested.
Rather than working to persuade the skeptically-minded, global warming activists condemn. They name-call. They accuse. This isn’t the sort of behaviour one associates with an iron-clad case.
Roy Spencer is a bona fide climate scientist who disagrees with the dangerous global warming hypothesis. I review his book Climate Confusion – and also discuss Bill McKibben’s The End of Nature.
Dr. John O’Connor is the hero of a documentary film that alleges a connection between the Alberta tar sands and cancer. But an investigation found many of his statements to be “inaccurate” and “untruthful.”
When political ideology is taken to an extreme, when it becomes the primary driving force behind decision-making, really bad things happen to both humans and the environment. Mao’s War Against Nature is a scary book – and a cautionary tale.
Bernie Goldberg worked on news shows for 28 years at CBS television. His book has illuminating things to say about purported investigative news programs & other topics. “Scaring the hell out of people makes for good television,” he writes, “even when it makes for shallow journalism.”
Exploring a long list of highly questionable media scare stories, Goldberg reminds us that, in 1987, Oprah Winfrey told her viewers 1 in 5 American heterosexuals would be dead from AIDS within 3 years.
A 2-minute video about why it’s not OK for one party in a discussion to unilaterally declare that “the debate is over.” Full text provided.
A moderate and pragmatic voice in the climate debate, Roger Pielke Jr. argues in this book, The Honest Broker, that scientists deserve this label when they present a variety of options to the public – rather than advocating a single course of action.
Nigel Lawson’s An Appeal to Reason provides an overview of the good reasons to be skeptical of the hype surrounding global warming. The world would be a more sensible place if journalists, politicians & educators spent a few hours reading its 100 pages.
The Age of Stupid is a fictional film about the future. It says current humans are too dumb & self-absorbed to pay attention to the threat of global warming. I propose a different scenario: What shall I say to my grandchildren when they ask me why I did nothing as every facet of daily life became assessed, inspected & regulated by eco bureaucrats? What shall I say when they ask me why I allowed personal liberties to slip away?
Wild-eyed, apocalyptic predictions about the future are not news.
Aerospace pioneer Burt Rutan is fully equipped to assess the charts and graphs that supposedly demonstrate global warming. His conclusion? The data is dodgy & the numbers have been manipulated.
Oil companies get fined $7,000 per bird for inadvertently harming wildlife. Yet society ignores the predictable massacre of thousands of birds by wind farms. Are we protecting wildlife – or harassing oil companies?
Burt Rutan designed SpaceShipOne, the first privately-funded craft to enter space & return. Having examined the arguments supporting the global warming hypothesis, this exceptional engineer is less than impressed.
He says the Earth’s climate has always changed & always will. He also accuses the IPCC of weighting one group of data 390 times more than another in order to transform falling temperatures into rising ones.
In this 7-minute video, comic George Carlin says some unkind things about environmentalists.
We wouldn’t convict someone of a crime without hearing their side of the story. Yet we’ve listened only to the prosecution side of the global warming argument. Full text provided.
My Cousin Vinny isn’t just a great comic film. It does a stellar job of demonstrating the danger of listening to only one point-of-view, of jumping to conclusions before all sides have been heard.
It seems not to have crossed Al Gore’s mind that some of us consider his arguments flawed, his data suspect & his rhetoric overwrought. Instead, he prefers to believe that human neo cortexes are too primitive – that we’re biologically incapable of grasping his apocalyptic message.
Leaders of the G8 have as much chance of controlling global temperature as does my rosebush. That they imagine this to be even possible reveals the bizarre nature of the global warming discussion.
Activist scientist James Hansen says the “experts agree” that meeting our current energy needs is possible via efficiency measures & carbon-free sources. But lots of experts don’t agree. Does he make a habit of pretending those with contrary opinions don’t exist?
Greenpeace thinks climate skeptics should be silent because a “scientific consensus” has established that dangerous climate change is real. Yet Greenpeace’s active opposition to genetically modified foods flies in the face of another scientific consensus – the one that says such products are safe.
Skeptical climate scientists are often accused of being motivated by financial gain. So why does Al Gore charge $175,000 to deliver a speech? If global warming is really a planetary emergency, why won’t he deliver the same talk for $50,000?
Two professors (who believe human-caused global warming is a problem) argue that the Kyoto Protocol was doomed to fail & that pushing for more policies of this sort wastes precious time.
A pragmatic analysis that reveals common ground between moderate climate activists & moderate climate skeptics.
If one were looking for reasons to dismiss global warming skepticism, these 13 pages of text provide ample fodder.
Climate change activists aren’t the only ones who resort to hysteria & hyperbole.
I believe in debate. I believe in questions. I believe anyone who wants everyone else to change their lives had better have a persuasive argument.
Billions of years before humans appeared on this planet, the climate was doing something utterly natural – it was changing.
We are all entitled to ask questions – about anything, but particularly about a topic that is rarely absent from the daily news. Yet according to a spokeswoman for the United Nations it is immoral and irresponsible to question climate change.
After a steady diet of climate hysteria, I’ve reached my limit. I consider myself a sensible person who is now speaking up & pushing back.