TCS Daily


Inconvenient Truths Indeed

By Robert C. Balling - May 24, 2006 12:00 AM

Al Gore's "An Inconvenient Truth" opens around the country this week. In the film Gore pulls together evidence from every corner of the globe to convince us that climate change is happening fast, we are to blame, and if we don't act immediately, our Earth will be all but ruined. However, as you sit through the film, consider the following inconvenient truths:

(1) Near the beginning of the film, Gore pays respects to his Harvard mentor and inspiration, Dr. Roger Revelle. Gore praises Revelle for his discovery that atmospheric CO2 levels were rising and could potentially contribute to higher temperatures at a global scale. There is no mention of Revelle's article published in the early 1990s concluding that the science is "too uncertain to justify drastic action." (S.F. Singer, C. Starr, and R. Revelle, "What to do about Greenhouse Warming: Look Before You Leap. Cosmos 1 (1993) 28-33.)

(2) Gore discusses glacial and snowpack retreats atop Mt. Kilimanjaro, implying that human induced global warming is to blame. But Gore fails to mention that the snows of Kilimanjaro have been retreating for more than 100 years, largely due to declining atmospheric moisture, not global warming. Gore does not acknowledge the two major articles on the subject published in 2004 in the International Journal of Climatology and the Journal of Geophysical Research showing that modern glacier retreat on Kilimanjaro was initiated by a reduction in precipitation at the end of the nineteenth century and not by local or global warming.

(3) Many of Gore's conclusions are based on the "Hockey Stick" that shows near constant global temperatures for 1,000 years with a sharp increase in temperature from 1900 onward. The record Gore chooses in the film completely wipes out the Medieval Warm Period of 1,000 years ago and Little Ice Age that started 500 years ago and ended just over 100 years ago. There is evidence from throughout the world that these climate episodes existed, but on Gore's Hockey Stick, they become nothing more than insignificant fluctuations (Gore even jokes at one point about the Medieval Warm period).

(4) You will certainly not be surprised to see Katrina, other hurricanes, tornadoes, flash floods, and many types of severe weather events linked by Gore to global warming. However, if one took the time to read the downloadable "Summary for Policymakers" in the latest report from the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), one would learn that "No systematic changes in the frequency of tornadoes, thunder days, or hail events are evident in the limited areas analysed" and that "Changes globally in tropical and extra-tropical storm intensity and frequency are dominated by inter-decadal and multi-decadal variations, with no significant trends evident over the 20th century."

(5) Gore claims that sea level rise could drown the Pacific islands, Florida, major cities the world over, and the 9/11 Memorial in New York City. No mention is made of the fact that sea level has been rising at a rate of 1.8 mm per year for the past 8,000 years; the IPCC notes that "No significant acceleration in the rate of sea level rise during the 20th century has been detected."

(6) Near the end of the film, we learn of ways the United States could reduce emissions of greenhouse gases back to the levels of 1970. OK. Assume the United States accomplishes this lofty goal, would we see any impact on climate? The well-known answer is no. China, India and many other countries are significantly increasing their emission levels, and global concentrations of CO2 may double this century no matter what we decide to do in the United States. Even if the Kyoto Protocol could be fully implemented to honor the opening of this movie, the globe would be spared no more than a few hundredths of a degree of warming.

Throughout the film Gore displays his passion for the global warming issue, and it is obvious that he has dedicated a substantial amount of time to learning about climate change and the greenhouse effect. This leads to an obvious question. The Kyoto Protocol was negotiated in December of 1997 giving the Clinton-Gore administration more than three years to present the Protocol to the United States Senate for ratification. Given Gore's position in the senate and his knowledge and passion for global warming, one must wonder why then Vice President Gore did not seize on what appears to have been an opportunity of a lifetime?

"An Inconvenient Truth" is billed as the scariest movie you'll ever see. It may well be, but that's in part because it is not the most accurate depiction of the state of global warming science. The enormous uncertainties surrounding the global warming issue are conveniently missing in "An Inconvenient Truth."

Dr. Robert C. Balling Jr. is a professor in the climatology program at Arizona State University, specializing in climate change and the greenhouse effect.

Categories:

185 Comments

Gore, the EnviroFascist
Go to this site:

http://www.crichton-official.com

and look up his speech on Environmentalism as Religion. It is as accurate portrayal of Gore and his ilk as you will ever read.

Consider the source: More inconvient truths
Robert C. Balling is just earing his pay today. Balling is listed as a paid "flacktivist" of the Competitive Enterprise Institute - CEI, whose millions of dollars in funding comes primarily from Exxon.

http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=CEI

The one
All Balling's points are hashed and re-hashed in the literature. Look in Science Magazine or Nature for the overwhelmng scientific consensus. Let me just answer three of his points.

1. Revelle's article in 1993 said the greenhouse gas global warming theory was too preliminary to justify "drastic action". Well, in 1993 that was true. In the 13 years since then, the evidence has, shall we say, grown.

2. Balling knows perfectly well why Clinton never presented the Kyoto treaty to the Republican Senate, they would have rejected it. You can fault Clinton for not going to bat for Kyoto the way he did for NAFTA. Maybe Gore would have made a different call.

3. It will be easier to pressure China on greenhouse gasses once we have done something ourselves, just as it would be easier to pressure them on human rights once we close Gitmo. (wingers, bring it on).

GW deniers should fork out a dollar and read today's NYTimes Op/Ed on the subject.

No
1. The evidence has not grown, rather there has been a proliferation in modeling exercises. A model proves nothing, particularly when it is as fraudulent as MBH 98. The evidence indeed shows evidence of a slow warming trend, and even the enthusiasts at RealClimate have agreed that the most likely increase will be about 1 degree centigrade over the next century. Hardly a catastrophe.

2. Gore may well have made a different call, submitted it for ratification and been roundly defeated. But then, that's why Clinton was President and Gore unsuited for anything better than a second fiddle role. Clinton understood that you fight the battles that you can win.

3. Don't be silly. No one's going to pressure China on anything, especially something as silly as the Kyoto Protocol.

Finally, try not to distort this too much. This absurd movie is not about the facts of climate change; its about the extreme projections which have no basis in the science.

What's your point iLarynx?
Do you totally discount everything R. C. Balling says because of where he gets his funding? If so, why give any credit to Al Gore’s movie because he gets funding from George Soros and other anti-western groups and environmentalist extremists. Perhaps you should be more willing to look at all the facts rather than discount the information simply because you disagree with the funding source.

What can we expect if the U.S. implements Al Gore’s proposal? If you read his book "Earth in the Balance" you can see some of his proposals include concepts such as $10 per gallon gasoline (raise taxes to cut consumption); rationing of electricity to reduce power plant emissions; and elimination of most meat from your diet (meat animals produce methane gas). Are you willing to accept these restrictions on your lifestyle and freedoms while other countries (e.g., India and China) continue to expand their economy? If so, why?

Crichton misses a point
in his speech on environmentalism as religion. He is entirely correct that it has all the trappings and characteristics of religion, but it's more than that. This is a very old strain of belief that can be found in varying forms throughout western culture and civilization. It's expressed as an atavistic longing for a simpler society that occurred in some earlier time. You can find it as the central theme in the writings of both Cato the Elder and Younger in Republican Rome, in the fantasy literature and recreation of mediaeval life in England in the 19th century, in the idolization of primitive tribal Germany by the National Socialists, in the textile-machine smashing of the Luddites and the anti-industrialization platform of the Chartists, the plethora of revoltingly schmaltzy pastoral poetry of the Englightenment (as if somehow being an impoverished sheep herder was virtuous)... I could go on but you get the picture. In every society, there is a signficant group which dislikes the changes they see around them driven by social, economic and technological change and wants to revert to an earlier society without what they see as problems.

Confucius said it best, "The opposite of change is not stasis, but change in a different direction". The Luddites have always been with us, and because their argument is impossible to sustain, they always lose.

Yes, let's consider it
Sourcewatch is funded by Center for Media and Democracy, a leftist, environmentalist foundation.

I reckon that funding from leftist foundations is quite different than funding from corporations. No bias amongst in the noble Center for Media and Democracy is there?

How about looking at the actual science? By all means keep an eye on the funding and look out for bias but also keep in mind that bias needs to be proven. AGW proponent's data is constantly being debunked and refuted but the only thing that comes from mouths such as yours is that such debunkings only prove that Big Oil(!) has bought off the researchers. It matters not that their science stands up to scrutiny.

Senate resistance was 100% bipartisan
"Balling knows perfectly well why Clinton never presented the Kyoto treaty to the Republican Senate, they would have rejected it..."

Sorry, but the Senate voted on a resolution that publically declared Kyoto toast in that chamber by 100% of all voting members (97-0, I believe). The other missing three votes were either no-shows or abstentations. That's why the Clinton-Gore Administration backed off.

Point is: Every Dem who voted on that resolution voted for it, in lock-step with every Rep who voted on it. So, cut the 'Republican Senate' spin, ok?

Worthless garbage
in your post. Unable to address any of the substance in his article you resort to ad hominem.

I believe
it was 95-0 with 5 absences and no abstentions.

He has no point
except the one on top of his head. He's just another shrieking slogan-shouter.

Bully Gore
"So how is it that we don't have more scientists speaking up about this junk science? It's my belief that many scientists have been cowed not merely by money but by fear. An example: Earlier this year, Texas Rep. Joe Barton issued letters to paleoclimatologist Michael Mann and some of his co-authors seeking the details behind a taxpayer-funded analysis that claimed the 1990s were likely the warmest decade and 1998 the warmest year in the last millennium. Mr. Barton's concern was based on the fact that the IPCC had singled out Mr. Mann's work as a means to encourage policy makers to take action. And they did so before his work could be replicated and tested--a task made difficult because Mr. Mann, a key IPCC author, had refused to release the details for analysis. The scientific community's defense of Mr. Mann was, nonetheless, immediate and harsh. The president of the National Academy of Sciences--as well as the American Meteorological Society and the American Geophysical Union--formally protested, saying that Rep. Barton's singling out of a scientist's work smacked of intimidation.

All of which starkly contrasts to the silence of the scientific community when anti-alarmists were in the crosshairs of then-Sen. Al Gore. In 1992, he ran two congressional hearings during which he tried to bully dissenting scientists, including myself, into changing our views and supporting his climate alarmism. Nor did the scientific community complain when Mr. Gore, as vice president, tried to enlist Ted Koppel in a witch hunt to discredit anti-alarmist scientists--a request that Mr. Koppel deemed publicly inappropriate. And they were mum when subsequent articles and books by Ross Gelbspan libelously labeled scientists who differed with Mr. Gore as stooges of the fossil-fuel industry.

Sadly, this is only the tip of a non-melting iceberg. In Europe, Henk Tennekes was dismissed as research director of the Royal Dutch Meteorological Society after questioning the scientific underpinnings of global warming. Aksel Winn-Nielsen, former director of the U.N.'s World Meteorological Organization, was tarred by Bert Bolin, first head of the IPCC, as a tool of the coal industry for questioning climate alarmism. Respected Italian professors Alfonso Sutera and Antonio Speranza disappeared from the debate in 1991, apparently losing climate-research funding for raising questions."

http://www.opinionjournal.com/extra/?id=110008220

Why give money to the NYTs?
>"Look in Science Magazine or Nature for the overwhelmng scientific consensus."

Is this the same Science that wouldn't allow Lomborg to defend his work after publishing 11 pages hit piece on his work? Ah yes, a true scientific work that was. It is always a consensus when you refuse to give the other side a voice. Once again, no consensus exists.

>"In the 13 years since then, the evidence has, shall we say, grown."

Actually, this is true. The evidence that AGW proponents can't model, predict, prevent, or even prove its existence has been proven beyond a shadow of a doubt. It has been proven that climate change occurs, has occured in the past, and will continue into the future and that humanity's impact is minimal and uncertain.

>"Balling knows perfectly well why Clinton never presented the Kyoto treaty to the Republican Senate, they would have rejected it."

Not only highlighting how Clinton has no beliefs he will stand up for but also showing us that Republicans have a clearer mind on this issue.

>"It will be easier to pressure China on greenhouse gasses once we have done something ourselves, just as it would be easier to pressure them on human rights once we close Gitmo. (wingers, bring it on)."

Consider it brought. I will start by saying their is no evidence of human rights violations at Gitmo. Oh, and why would we put pressure on China to not industrialize? It is a proven fact that the ecology gets better as its population attains greater wealth. The US and Europe for example.

You might want to break this one apart LG. It is alot for your liberal mind to handle.

Darn it!
I was hoping for the Republicans putting it down but it seems that the Dems had a moment of clarity.

and this proves ... what?
You honestly think that even if CEI's money came from Exxon, this proves everything they say wrong?

the evidence
As usual, LG sees what he wants to see, not what is really there.

The evidence for catestrophic AGW has grown consistently weaker over the last decade.

The evidence shows that we might see another tenth or two of a degree rise as CO2 concentrations finish doubling. That's it. No big.

The point
The point is that either Balling or the editors at James "Dow 36,000" Glassman's TCS apparently felt that Balling's affiliation with CEI, an industry front group with Exxon as prime funder, would have exposed his bias in this article and therefore, 'conveniently' left that truth out.

I can't argue for or against Balling's assertions because I haven't verified them for myself. Therefore, I haven't argued for or against anything Balling asserted. I did point out that his affiliation with CEI was not noted along with his Arizona State Univ. affiliation. Given the subject being discussed along with the nature of CEI's work and funding, the omission seems a bit suspect.

Caveat lector.

In fact
even the supporters of human generated global warming are in general agreement with the sceptics about the magnitude of the increase, overall about 1 degree C, most of which has already occurred.
http://motls.blogspot.com/2006/05/climate-sensitivity-and-editorial.html

Since you have no argument
against the substance of any of Balling's statements, you have nothing of relevance to say whatsoever.

Good bye and try not to let the door hit you on the way out.

Hmmm... found one reason...
If you able, read John Tierney's review of Algore's movie this past Tuesday. I am amazed the editors at the NYT let this slip by.

The evidence has always been there that global warming is a myth
Having worked in the environmental field for 30 years, I ran across supposed human induced global warming in the early 1990's. I have worked with models for many years in air pollution. To say that models can predict environmental impacts 100 years in the future is absurd. It copies the nuclear freeze fantasy by Sagan and others.

Global warming advocates lost any credibilty with me years ago. Environmental whacko's enjoy this scary, nonsense stuff. Academia research groups love this subject as federal funds allow them to study this issue for years and years. This fantasy land stuff is simply being used as a political tool by Gore today, as he probably wants the lime light to run for President again.

As regards fossil fuel shortages in the future, global warming is not the tactic for solving an energy crisis. The market and technology can handle this problem, but persons who waste fuel due to its low cost today will not like the answers and sacrifices (I have not seen anyone changing their driving habits since Katrina, so fuel must still be cheap). Still the market and technology strategy is better than regulating citizens under something such as Kyoto or turning to Congress for ignorant fixes.

Oil companies have provided energy to citizens at prices so cheap that people have wasted it for years. This waste cannot last forever. The spoiled consumers are going to pay the price for their selfishness and ignorance. Global warming is irrelevent for solving this problem.

Sources
OH MY GOSH! How did you find out that Sourcewatch is funded by Center for Media and Democracy!?!? It's supposed to be a secret! They keep this affiliation well-hidden. In order to learn of this clandestine affiliation, you'd have to go to their web site[1], navigate to the first page, and hunt for the very first line on the page to read the coded message: "Welcome to SourceWatch, a collaborative project of the Center for Media and Democracy"

Oh, if only TCS and Mr. Balling had the cleverness to hide his affiliation to CEI like the sneaky left.

[1] http://www.sourcewatch.org/

Relativity
Your wrong, of course. The affiliations of the author are quite relevant.

Unless you consider this witticism "relevant" to the discussion:
ColinH "except the one on top of his head. He's just another shrieking slogan-shouter."

Or if you're a right wing-nut whose definition of "irrelevant" is "anything that doesn't agree with my point of view."

I think I'll move on to a more adult-oriented discussion and leave you to your reactionary onanisms.

The affiliations of the author
are not relevant, only the ideas contained in his writing. By your refusal to discuss the content of the article and resort only to ad hominem, you are nothing but a shrieking slogan-shouter.

QED

Skeptic Accepts Inconvenient Truth
The Flipping Point
by Michael Shermer (Skeptics Society founder)
American Scientific, June 2006

...My experience is symptomatic of deep problems that have long plagued the environmental movement. Activists who vandalize Hummer dealerships and destroy logging equipment are criminal ecoterrorists. Environmental groups who cry doom and gloom to keep donations flowing only hurt their credibility. As an undergraduate in the 1970s, I learned (and believed) that by the 1990s overpopulation would lead to worldwide starvation and the exhaustion of key minerals, metals and oil, predictions that failed utterly. POLITICS POLLUTED THE SCIENCE and made me an environmental skeptic.

...I attended the TED (Technology, Entertainment, Design) conference in Monterey, Calif., where FORMER VICE PRESIDENT AL GORE DELIVERED THE SINGLE FINEST SUMMATION of the evidence for Global Warming I have ever heard, based on the recent documentary film about his work in this area, An Inconvenient Truth. The striking before-and-after photographs showing the disappearance of glaciers around the world shocked me out of my doubting stance.

...Four books eventually brought me to the flipping point: Brian Fagan's "The Long Summer", Jared Diamond's "Collapse", Elizabeth Kolbert's "Field Notes from a Catastrophe", and Tim Flannery's "The Weather Makers".

...Because of the complexity of the problem, environmental skepticism was once tenable. No longer. IT IS TIME TO FLIP FROM SKPETICISM TO ACTIVISM.

http://www.sciam.com/article.cfm?chanID=sa006&
articleID=000B557A-71ED-146C-ADB783414B7F0000&colID=13

There may be a difference
between the aims and intentions of the two groups. In the case of the academics, I believe that most if not all of the academics may be geniune in their concerns on this subject. However, many of the Greens are not. Their interest is in the absolute constriction of energy supply as the means of advancing their social agenda.

As to low energy prices, it has certainly been a fools paradise when for decades gasoline has been cheaper than gatorade. I would suggest however, that it is not so much any potential shortage of oil as a resource that will compell changes but rather the increasing inability of the production system to meet total energy demand.

Evidently Shermer
lost it if he was persuaded of anything by Diamond and Flannery. Read both of those works, and they contain extensive rewriting of history, particularly in the case of Diamond that are demonstrably incorrect.

Ibsen wrote this script
The exchange in this thread would be at home in the play "An Enemy of the People" by Henrik Ibsen. There, too, the scientific evidence meets resistence from stupid people.

As you are evidently
an expert from personal experience on stupidity, I leave such conclusions on Ibsen entirely to you.

Consider the source: More inconvient truths
>Balling is listed as a paid "flacktivist"

Here we have the typical response of the modern American liberal to facts and arguements that don't agree with their PC worldview: slander.

Not one bit of reason, not one fact, not one counterexample to the facts the author provided. All we get from "iLarynx" is the sneering, elitist hate so beloved of the Left.

Andrew

Relativity
>our wrong, of course. The affiliations of the author are quite relevant.

More lies from a modern liberal. The science and the facts of the "enhanced greenhouse effect" are what matter, not the sneering lies of Al Gore and his willfully ignorant sycopants like "iLarynx".

Andrew

Skeptics Society Presents
The Environmental Wars
Skeptics Society, June 2–4, 2006

Why are we still debating climate change? How soon will we hit peak oil supply? When politics mix with science, what is being brewed? Join speakers from the left & the right, from the lab & the field, from industry & advocacy, as we air the ongoing debate about whether human activity is actually changing the climate of the planet.

From June 2–4, 2006, the Environmental Wars conference will host scientists, writers, environmentalists, and thinkers from all points along the environmental spectrum at the California Institute of Technology for questions, answers, and opinions.

The conference is hosted by the Skeptics Society, a scientific and educational organization that applies rational inquiry and journalistic research to claims made by scientists, historians, writers and politicians on a wide range of subjects. The society publishes Skeptic magazine, and hosts regular lecture series with past speakers including Richard Dawkins, Susan Blackmore, Ursula Goodenough, Jared Diamond, Bill Nye the Science Guy, and Jennifer Michael Hecht.

http://www.environmentalwars.org/

Interesting...
that you would fault someone for not citing funding when you yourself failed to do so in your initial post.

Still, your source is funded by a left-leaning environmentalist organization. Should this not be relevant when looking into those they choose to "expose"?

Just another "do as I say not as I do" liberal.

As a public service
You may not say that background data on the source of your information is important, but it is. You believe this too. If you read an article, do you place equal value on the reliability of that article regardless of whether it was written by someone on the payroll of the NYT vs. World Net Daily vs. The Daily Worker? How about if the author was on the payroll of Greenpeace vs. CEI? It's simply a matter of caveat lector. Or, if you still assert that the affiliations of the source of your information is irrelevant, then caecus lector.

And now, as a public service:

ad hominem
adj : appealing to personal considerations (rather than to fact or reason); "ad hominem arguments"
Source: WordNet ® 2.0, © 2003 Princeton University

Noting the author's affiliations (and their conspicuous omission) is simply a statement of fact.

Calling someone a "shreiking slogan-shouter" is appealing to personal considerations (rather than to fact or reason).

Another example:
Statement of fact: "Erroneous use of the phrase 'ad hominem' may make you look foolish to others."
Ad hominem: "You are an idiot."

Talk about bias....
Let's look at two different scenarios:

1) Man-made global warming either does not exist, or provides only a trivial impact as compared to natural influences. In this case, there is no "crisis" (at least, because we can do nothing to influence the natural impacts). Thus, there is little government money to fund climatologists, and other scientists to find a cure. Scientists lose jobs (after all, how many climatologists do we really need??), must get re-educated and seek new careers.

2) Man-made global warming is ASSUMED to exist, the man-made (manipulated?) models prove it, and mankind is found to be the primary cause of negative climate changes. In this case, we have a CRISIS and the governments of the world dump hundreds of millions of dollars into additional research. Climatologists get lots of grants, and live the easy life studying the impact of man, and trying to find solutions. No new training needed. Furthermore, engineers get a huge influx of cash to find alternatives to fossil fuels, etc. Taxpayer cash flows like rain to the scientific community.

Now, tell me where the majority of climatologists, and other related scientists and engineers, want to fall? This alone is a reason to greet with skepticism any claim that "most" climatologists fall under scenario (2), and it can clearly explain why so many don't support claim (1).

Furthermore, the press LIKES disaster and crisis stories, and thus will play up scenario (2) and minimize scenario (1) in its reporting and commentaries. Is it any wonder the Gore movie is a hit?

-Bob

Reading comprehension
Wow. This is such a pathetic attempt at a straw-man argument that I think you've created a new category all to yourself: The straw-boy argument.

If you read my initial post, I faulted Balling for failing to cite his affiliation with CEI. No one expects him to print "I got $1200 from Exxon for writing this piece," but leaving out his CEI link is worth noting, I think. He seems proud of his affiliation with ASU. Why should he be embarassed of his affiliation with CEI?

And I did cite my source in my initial post. What is it about http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=CEI that you don't understand?

This is about as useful as discussing Van Gough with a fruit bat.

What scientific evidence?
Are you still trying to cliam that the output of the models is "scientific"?

If he's capable of being convinced by Gore?
Then your skeptic must have been a world class mental midget to begin with.

What I find funny
Is that in an article regarding Gore's willingness to lie about the basic science, and conceal any fact that doesn't fit into his agenda.

Rhampton tries to use Gore as a source to prove a point.

Ibsen wrote this script
"The exchange in this thread would be at home in the play "An Enemy of the People" by Henrik Ibsen. There, too, the scientific evidence meets resistence from stupid people."

No, just a sneering elistist liberal who can't argue from a basis of facts, so he engages in slander.

"LiberalGoodman", you are a willfully ignorant fool, and you prove it everytime you engage in slander instead of civil, reasoned, debate.

Well, remember..
Well, just remember, the Dems still did not know who was going to be Prez after 2000 .. so they were not yet in 'oppose anything and everything the Prez does' mode..

meaning, of course, that they were therefore rudderless - the dems have for years been about only one thing: the opposite of whatever the dreaded conservatives are for. And since the kyoto agreement was from day one clearly nothing more than a thinly veiled attempt to undermine the United States' economy, absolutely NO ONE was willing to stand up for it.

Now, of course, you have morons like Gore and his tribe of brain-dead socialist idiots who are more than willing to shout about how bad it is that we are not 'doing our part'. It's ok with them, after all, since they are uniformly either billionaires, celebrities, or unemployed drug-users, none of which would be affected much by the economic damage that would be done by such a stupid thing as kyoto.

Flipping Through Books
Michael Shermer said Gore gave a very good summation, but "Four books eventually brought me to the flipping points"

Kyoto is a SHAM.
Thee is no reduction, and no real incentiveto reduce GHG's, just a chance to spread it around.

Emissions trading
Main article: Emissions trading
Each ratifying Annex I country has agreed to limit emissions to the levels described in the protocol, but many countries have limits that are set above their current production. These "extra amounts" can be purchased by other countries on the open market. So, for instance, Russia currently easily meets its targets, and can sell off its credits for millions of dollars to countries that don't yet meet their targets, to Canada for instance. This rewards countries that meet their targets, and provides financial incentives to others to do so as soon as possible:

Countries also receive credits through various shared "clean energy" programs and "carbon dioxide sinks" in the form of forests and other systems that remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

A Washington D.C.-based NGO, in the report pdf.wri.org "Getting It Right: Emerging Markets for Storing Carbon in Forests", assumes values of $30-40/ton in the US and $70-80/ton in Europe. On 18 April 2001, The Netherlands purchased credits for 4 megatons of carbon dioxide emissions from Poland, Romania, and the Czech Republic; this was part of the ERUPT procurement procedure. These purchase agreements however contained conditions precedent, e.g. referring to the financing of the underlying projects. Since several of these conditions have not been met, the amount of purchased credits has since then decreased.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kyoto_protocol#Emissions_trading

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emissions_trading

Thanks Oil Companies
"Oil companies have provided energy to citizens at prices so cheap that people have wasted it for years. This waste cannot last forever. The spoiled consumers are going to pay the price for their selfishness and ignorance. Global warming is irrelevent for solving this problem."

And they did this out of the goodness of their hearts?

Not for you, but for me.
Having worked in the oil industry for 40 years drilling oil and gas wells, the company I worked for decided that we would single out people like Marjon to screw every chance we got. It's guys like Marjon who work somewhere but does not understand profit (probably works for the government), and has no goodness in his heart. We love to take advantage of his type. All of us oil guys our gouging guys like Marjon and getting what we can before he does it to us. Does that satisify you Marjon? If not, too bad.

Jared Diamond is hardly an advertisement for scientific rigor
His books are readable, but as to scientific rigor and logic they are a cut above Velikhovsky, and a bit shy of Margaret Meade.

Shermer's article was one more step in Sci Am's change from science magazine to. .
Scientific American used to be a science magazine, but sometime in the past few years it has become a political advocacy magazine which clothes itself in science.

You correctly quoted Shermer when he admitted that he was a gullible idiot before. "As an undergraduate in the 1970s, I learned (and believed) that by the 1990s overpopulation would lead to worldwide starvation and the exhaustion of key minerals, metals and oil, predictions that failed utterly. POLITICS POLLUTED THE SCIENCE and made me an environmental skeptic."

The question is why a science magazine would publish him as a wise guru now?

The acid test for real versus fake concern about global warming
If global warming is a real threat there is one, and only one, proven existing technology which will allow significant reduction of greenhouse gas emissions without resulting in a global holocaust.

That technology is nuclear power. All other so called alternative energy sources are mere drops in the bucket next to the 82 million barrels per day of oil and however many million tons per day of coal it takes to fuel and feed the modern world.

Anyone who purports to be concerned about greenhouse gas emissions but opposes nuclear power is either ignorant of reality or actually a luddite or worse.

Hear Hear
"It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer, or the baker, that we can expect our dinner, but from their regard to their own interest."

http://www.econlib.org/library/ENC/bios/Smith.html

Excuses for Socialism
This is one debate I don't pay any attention to at all anymore because, regardless of what the facts say about global warming, the end result will be a push for some idiotic socialist policy that will fail miserably and make environmental matters worse, rather than better.

If socialism cannot eradicate poverty, it sure as Hell cannot warm the damn planet back up.

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