Sunday, December 14, 2008

Climate Change Politics -- A Witch's Brew from Salem to Poznan

Eminent scientist, and Salem State College professor John Hayes believes in Anthropogenic Climate Change. At a recent Salem Sound Coastwatch meeting, he delivered a presentation on "Climate Change and New England." He challenged the residents of the Massachusetts city to think of ways that Salem could reduce its greenhouse gas emissions. Hayes, in addition to his college professing duties, is a member of the Renewable Energy Task Force in Salem.

The Salem News reports:

Hayes and others in New England are studying local trends like the reduction of snow days, a longer growing season, sea level rises, temperature changes, the increase of carbon dioxide (CO2) absorption by oceans, coastal wetland damage, and more.

New England's changes may not appear obvious, threatening, or extreme. However, according to Hayes, from Boston to Portland, Maine, there's been a 5.5-inch sea-level rise in the last 70 years, and that is significant to coastal managers and urban planners.


Strongly in lock-step with the IPCC, the Northeast Climate Impacts Assessment Report, "Confronting Climate Change in the Northeast," forecasts the following possible scenarios of inaction:

  • Warm our ocean waters and thus eliminate harvestable Cod populations from being present
  • Reduce snowfall and confine New England's bustling ski industry to western Maine
  • Change the character of our forests, thus decimating the "leaf-peeping" tourist engine as well as reducing the strength of the pulpwood industry
  • Increase our seasonal temperatures and compromise apple, blueberry, and cranberry crops


And in this vein, a revealing quotation: "Often biologists and scientists express that they are tired of discussing "consensus science" — the practice of compounding research to promote theories, in this case that global warming is happening — and are instead looking for action for change that has taken place."

But shouldn't we be more prudent and careful here? Doesn't bad science make bad policy?

Meanwhile, from the U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works:

POZNAN, Poland - The UN global warming conference currently underway in Poland is about to face a serious challenge from over 650 dissenting scientists from around the globe who are criticizing the climate claims made by the UN IPCC and former Vice President Al Gore. Set for release this week, a newly updated U.S. Senate Minority Report features the dissenting voices of over 650 international scientists, many current and former UN IPCC scientists, who have now turned against the UN.

[...]

The U.S. Senate report is the latest evidence of the growing groundswell of scientific opposition rising to challenge the UN and Gore. Scientific meetings are now being dominated by a growing number of skeptical scientists.


The eminent scientific skeptics include:

  • Nobel Prize Winner for Physics, Ivar Giaever;
  • Atmospheric Scientist Dr. Joanne Simpson, the first woman in the world to receive a PhD in meteorology and formerly of NASA who has authored more than 190 studies and has been called “among the most preeminent scientists of the last 100 years;”
  • UN IPCC Japanese Scientist Dr. Kiminori Itoh, an award-winning PhD environmental physical chemist;
  • Indian geologist Dr. Arun D. Ahluwalia at Punjab University and a board member of the UN-supported International Year of the Planet;
  • Victor Manuel Velasco Herrera, a researcher at the Institute of Geophysics of the National Autonomous University of Mexico;
  • U.S Government Atmospheric Scientist Stanley B. Goldenberg of the Hurricane Research Division of NOAA;
  • Geoffrey G. Duffy, a professor in the Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering of the University of Auckland, NZ;
  • Climate statistician Dr. William M. Briggs, who specializes in the statistics of forecast evaluation, serves on the American Meteorological Society's Probability and Statistics Committee and is an Associate Editor of Monthly Weather Review;
  • Geologist Dr. David Gee the chairman of the science committee of the 2008 International Geological Congress who has authored 130 plus peer reviewed papers, and is currently at Uppsala University in Sweden;
  • Meteorologist Hajo Smit of Holland, who reversed his belief in man-made warming to become a skeptic, is a former member of the Dutch UN IPCC committee;
  • Atmospheric physicist James A. Peden, formerly of the Space Research and Coordination Center in Pittsburgh;
  • Environmental Scientist Professor Delgado Domingos of Portugal, the founder of the Numerical Weather Forecast group, has more than 150 published articles;
  • Dr. Takeda Kunihiko, vice-chancellor of the Institute of Science and Technology Research at Chubu University in Japan;
  • Award-winning Paleontologist Dr. Eduardo Tonni, of the Committee for Scientific Research in Buenos Aires and head of the Paleontology Department at the University of La Plata;


One consensus that seems to emerge among these skeptics is that a) the IPCC's mathematical models failed to account for solar activity; b) Al Gore's An Inconvenient Truth was more propaganda than science, and was laden with unsupportable projections; c) global warming and climate change activism is more about politics and resource redistribution than it is about "settled" science; and d) the fear mongering around climate change is more about raising funds than saving the planet. For the IPCC, this is a tough crowd indeed.

Could this signal a sea change in the climate debate?

1 comment:

hernadi-key said...

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European leaders clash over pledges on global warming !!!


European leaders gather in Brussels today for a crunch summit, acutely divided over how to deliver on pledges to combat global warming almost two years after declaring they would show the rest of the world how to tackle climate change.

The EU is split between the poorer east and the wealthy west. Germany says that most of their industries need not pay to pollute, Italy says it cannot afford the ambitious scheme, and Britain says that the package on the table could result in huge windfall profits for companies.

"There is a very big chasm between the various parties," said a senior European diplomat.

Prime ministers and presidents appear to be getting cold feet over key decisions that need to be taken by the weekend to enact laws that will make the climate change package binding for 27 countries....


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